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Title: Myths & Legends of our New Possessions & Protectorate
Author: Skinner, Charles M. (Charles Montgomery), 1852-1907
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                            Myths & Legends
                                 Of Our
                            New Possessions
                             & Protectorate

                                   By
                           Charles M. Skinner

                         Philadelphia & London
                        J. B. Lippincott Company
                                  1900



                             THIS  BOOK  IS
                             AFFECTIONATELY
                             DEDICATED   TO
                             CORNELIA  OTIS
                             SKINNER,   OUR
                             NEW POSSESSION



TABLE OF CONTENTS


        In the Caribbean                               PAGE

            The Mysterious Islands                       23
            The Buccaneers                               33
            The Boat of Phantom Children                 46
            Early Porto Rico                             48
            The Deluge                                   55
            How Spaniards were Found to be Mortal        56
            Ponce                                        58
            Water Caves                                  61
            How a Dutchman Helped the Spaniards          65
            The Ghost of San Geronimo                    67
            Police Activity in Humacao                   71
            The Church in Porto Rico                     74
            The Mermaids                                 78
            The Aborigines                               83
            The Caribs                                   88
            Secret Enemies in the Hills                  92
            Sacred Shrines                               98
            Tobacco                                     103
            The Two Skeletons of Columbus               106
            Obeah Witches                               108
            The Matanzas Obeah Woman                    113
            How Havana Got its Market                   121
            The Justice of Tacon                        127
            The Cited                                   133
            The Virgin's Diamond                        141
            A Spanish Holofernes                        144
            The Courteous Battle                        150
            Why King Congo was Late                     153
            The Chase of Taito Perico                   156
            The Voice in the Inn                        163


        In the Pacific

            Finding of the Islands                      177
            Ancient Faiths of Hawaii                    178
            The Giant Gods                              188
            The First Fire                              189
            The Little People                           190
            The Hawaiian Iliad                          194
            The Hawaiian Orpheus and Eurydice           201
            The Rebellion of Kamiole                    206
            The Japanese Sword                          212
            Lo-Lale's Lament                            217
            The Resurrections of Kaha                   220
            Hawaiian Ghosts                             224
            The Three Wives of Laa                      225
            The Misdoing of Kamapua                     226
            Pele's Hair                                 233
            The Prayer to Pele                          234
            Lohiau and the Volcano Princess             237
            A Visit of Pele                             239
            The Great Famine                            243
            Kiha's Trumpet                              248
            How Moikeha Gained a Wife                   252
            The Sailing of Paao                         254
            The Wronged Wife                            256
            The Magic Spear                             259
            Hawaiian Witches                            262
            The Cannibals                               267
            The Various Graves of Kaulii                270
            The Kingship of Umi                         273
            Keaulumoku's Prophecy                       276
            The Tragedy of Spouting Cave                277
            The Grave of Pupehe                         283
            The Lady of the Twilight                    285
            The Ladrones                                286
            Old Beliefs of the Filipinos                290
            Animal Myths                                300
            Later Religious Myths and Miracles          304
            Bankiva, the Philippine Pied Piper          315
            The Crab Tried to Eat the Moon              317
            The Conversion of Amambar                   319
            The Bedevilled Galleon                      322
            Two Runaways from Manila                    329
            The Christianizing of Wong                  333
            The Devil's Bridge                          335
            The Great Earthquake                        339
            Suppressing Magic in Manila                 345
            Faith that Killed                           348
            The Widow Velarde's Husband                 351
            The Grateful Bandits                        352



ILLUSTRATIONS


    Gate of the Walled City of Manila          _Frontispiece_
    A Cuban Residence                               Page 146
    Down the Valley came Pouring a Flood of Lava    Page 232
    Avenue of Palms, Hawaii                         Page 262



IN THE CARIBBEAN


The Mysterious Islands


Somewhere--anywhere--in the Atlantic, islands drifted like those
tissues of root and sedge that break from the edges of northern
lakes and are sent to and fro by the gales: floating islands. The
little rafts bearing that name are thick enough to nourish trees,
and a man or a deer may walk on them without breaking through. Far
different were those wandering Edens of the sea, for they had
mountains, volcanoes, cities, and gardens; men of might and women
lovelier than the dawn lived there in brotherly and sisterly esteem;
birds as bright as flowers, and with throats like flutes, peopled
the groves, where luscious fruit hung ready for the gathering, and
the very skies above these places of enchantment were more serene
and deep than those of the storm-swept continents. Where the surges
creamed against the coral beaches and cliffs of jasper and marble,
the mer-people arose to view and called to the land men in song,
while the fish in the shallows were like wisps of rainbow.

It was the habit of these lands never to be where the seeker could
readily find them. Some legends pertaining to them appear to do
with places no farther from the homes of the simple, if imaginative,
tellers than the Azores, Canaries, and Cape Verdes; but others indicate
a former knowledge of our own America, and a few may relate to that
score or so of rocks lying between New England and the Latin shores;
bare, dangerous domes and ledges where sea fowl nest, and where a
crumbling skeleton tells of a sailor who outlived a wreck to endure
a more dreadful death from cold and thirst and hunger. Some of these
tales reach back to the Greek myths: survivals of the oldest histories,
or possibly connected America with the old world through voyages
made by men whose very nations are dead and long forgotten; for the
savages and ogres that inhabited these elusive islands may be European
concepts of our Indians. But in the earlier Christian era all was
mystery on those plains of water that stretched beyond the sunset. It
was believed that as one sailed toward our continent the day faded,
and that if the mariner kept on he would be lost in hopeless gloom.

Perhaps the most ancient story in the world tells of the sinking of
Atlantis. When the Egyptian priest told it to Solon it was already
venerable beyond estimate; yet he recounted the work and pleasures
of the Atlantans, who were a multitude, who drank from hot and cold
springs, who had mines of silver and gold, pastures for elephants,
and plants that yielded a sweet savor; who prayed in temples of white,
red and black stone, sheathed in shining metals; whose sculptors made
vast statues, one, representing Poseidon driving winged horses, being
so large that the head of the god nearly touched the temple roof;
who had gardens, canals, sea walls, and pleasant walks; who had ten
thousand chariots in their capital alone; the port of twelve hundred
ships. They were a folk of peace and kindness, but as they increased
in wealth and comfort they forgot the laws of heaven; so in a day
and a night this continent went down, burying its millions and its
treasures beneath the waters. A few of the inhabitants escaped to
Europe in their ships; a few, also, to America. It has been claimed
that Atlantis may still be traced in an elevation of the ocean floor
about seven hundred miles wide and a thousand miles long, its greatest
length from northeast to southwest, and the Azores at its eastern
edge--mountain tops not quite submerged. As some believe, it was from
this cataclysm that has sprung the world-wide legend of a deluge.

From some of the enchanted lands, perhaps near the American shore,
Merlin went to England, piled the monoliths of Stonehenge on Salisbury
moor, and after gaining respect and fear as a magician and prophet,
sailed back across the waste. The Joyous Island of Lancelot; the island
where King Arthur wrestled and bested the Half Man; Avalon, the Isle
of the Blest, where Arthur lived in the castle of the sea-born fairy,
Morgan le Fee, were probably near the British or Irish coasts.

Many days' sail from Europe was the Island of Youth. A daring Irish
lad reached it, borne by a horse as white as the foam, that never
sank. He paused on the way to slay a giant who held a princess in his
enchantment, and reached, at length, a land where birds were so many
that the trees shook with the burden of them, and the air rang with
their song. There, with his wife and a merry band of youths and maids,
he spent a hundred years--one long joy of killing; for from dawn till
dark the deer met death at his hand, bleeding from the stroke of dart
and knife. A floating spear was found near the shore one day, rusted
and scarred with battle, and as he grasped it memories of old wars
returned to him, so that he was sick with longing to go home and hurl
the cutting metal through the ribs of his enemies and see the good
red flood burst from their hearts. He remounted his white steed and
reached Ireland, careless of the happiness he had left: for those who
deserted the island might never return. He reached his home to find
men grown too small and mean to fight him, which probably means that
he had waxed so great as to make them seem like dwarfs. Appalled at
this change, dismayed at the loss of all chance for battle, he sank
to the earth. His age came suddenly upon him, and he died.

In one of the great Irish monasteries lived St. Brandan, of the holy
brotherhood that tilled the soil, taught the permitted sciences,
copied and illumined the works of the early Christians, fed four
hundred beggars daily, though living on bread, roots, and nuts
themselves, lodging and studying in unwarmed cells of stone. Once in
seven years the people saw from shore the island of Hy-Brasail. The
monks tried to stop its wanderings by prayer and by fiery arrows,
yet without avail. Kirwan claimed to have landed on it, and he
brought back strange money that he said was used by its people. So
late as 1850 Brasail Rock remained on the British Admiralty chart,
to show how hard tradition dies. The appearance of this phantom land
made Brandan long to explore the realm of mystery wherefrom it had
emerged. He hoped to find even the Promised Island of the Saints,
when at last he was able to leave the convent where he had endured so
many hardships and embarked on Mernoc's ship; blessed region where
fruit was borne on every tree, flowers on every bush; region strewn
with precious stones and full of perfume that clung to one's garments
for weeks, like an odor of sanctity.

Seventeen priests set sail in the coracle, or boat of basket work
covered with leather. They had no fear, for they were holy men, and
in those days Christians were immune from peril. Not long before a
company of nuns had been blown across the sea and back again, seated
on a cloak that rode the waves like a ship. After forty days Brandan's
company found a group of islands peopled by courteous natives. Next
they disembarked on what they thought to be a rock to cook a dinner,
but it was no rock; it was a whale, that, feeling the sting of flame
through his thick hide, rushed off for two miles, carrying their fire
on his back. They hastily re-entered their boat before the monster
had gained much headway and ere long reached the Paradise of Birds,
where they enjoyed the music made by thousands of little creatures
with their wings--a music like fiddling. After this came visits to a
den of griffins; to a land of grapes such as the Norsemen told about;
to a mountain country aflame with the forges of one-eyed people, or
cyclops. Twice, on Easter Sunday, they put lambs to death, and so,
being blessed for the sacrifice, were allowed to reach the Island of
Saints, where an angel bade them take all the precious stones they
wished, as they had been created for holy people, but to attempt no
exploration beyond that point. No men appeared; still, in order to
leave the impress of their calling, St. Malo, one of the company,
dug up a giant who had died several years before, preached to him and
baptized him. These reformatory services revived the giant a little,
though he was pretty far gone, and he died again as soon as the priest
stopped preaching. St. Brandan went back to Clonfert, where three
thousand monks joined him in good works, and mendicants swarmed from
all over the land to benefit by their labor. He often told the people
and the brethren of the wonders he had seen in lands Columbus was to
rediscover nine hundred years later, and he dwelt with marvelling on
the mercy of God as shown to Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Christ,
who was encountered in the northern seas, lying naked on an iceberg in
silent delight. St. Brandan recognized him by portraits he had seen and
hailed him. Judas then told his story; he was roasting in hell when
the Lord remembered that once in Joppa this disciple had thrown his
cloak over the shoulders of a leper who was agonized by a wind that
blew sharp sand into his sores. An angel was sent to tell the doomed
one that for this mercy he would be allowed, for one hour in every
year, to breathe the wholesome air of the upper world, and stretch his
scorched body on the ice. Moved by this tenderness toward the most
despised of men, St. Brandan bowed and prayed, just as Judas, with
despair in his upturned face, slipped down again to the deeps of fire.

Some men of Ross, Ireland, had killed their king, despite his
successful wars against his rival monarchs, some of whose kingdoms were
as large as a township. For this offense the heir to the throne, or his
advisers, decreed that sixty couples should be set adrift on the ocean,
to meet what fate they might. A guard was put along the shore to keep
them from landing again, and an easterly gale blew them quickly out of
sight of their relatives and friends. For years none dared to seek for
them. Conall Ua Corra, of Connaught, had prayed in vain to the Lord for
children, so in anger he prayed to the devil, and three boys were born
to his wife. The neighbors jeered at them as the fiend's offspring,
and harassed them and made them bitter. They said, one to the other,
"If we are really sons of Satan we will justify these taunts," and
collecting all the vicious boys of their village they robbed farmers,
ruined churches, killed men who resisted plunder, and were about to
murder their father when they were warned in a vision of the eternal
punishment they would endure in blazing sulphur pits if they did not
repent. Their father had long regretted his hasty prayer to the evil
one, and had tried to regain the good-will of heaven by industry,
and by giving freely of his substance to the sick and pauperized. By
advice of St. Finnen, to whom they confessed, the boys repaired the
churches they had injured and mourned the victims of their brutality;
yet, as the people doubted their conversion, they resolved to leave
the country and go to some land where they would not be constantly
exposed to the danger of breaking their good resolves by reproaches
and attacks. Where to go? It was suggested by some designing neighbor
that if they were to search for the one hundred and twenty exiles they
would be doing a service to heaven and the world. This suggestion was
promptly acted on. In a frail coracle they swept the sea, discovering
strange lands, in one of which the half-forgotten people of Ross were
found, living so contentedly that few of them cared to go back. The
most exciting incidents of the voyage were the three meetings with
the Island of Satan's Hand, a lone rock in icy waters, where fogs
always brooded. At the will of a malignant demon it changed its place
from time to time, and it was the hand of this monster, a vast, rude
shape looming out of the mist, which endangered all the ships that
passed, for it struck at them,--as it did at the coracle of these
three voyagers,--injuring hulls, tearing sails, or knocking the crews
overboard, when it did not send them to the bottom. If the blow fell
short it made the sea boil and sent billows rolling for a mile. Some
of the shore folk said it was icebergs that the shipmen saw; but
icebergs never sailed so far from the pole, they answered. Despite
its wandering habit, the map-makers eventually agreed on a site for
this rock of the smiting hand, calling it Satanaxio. It can be seen
on charts of the eighteenth century.

A thousand years before Columbus it was reported that tropic islands
had been discovered and ruled by Archbishop Oppas, of Spain, who
was fain to leave his country because he had betrayed his king to
the Moors. He found a race friendly and gentle, sharing with one
another whatever was given to them, as not knowing selfishness. This
prelate burned his ships, that his people might not return, laid off
the largest island into seven bishoprics, and, impressing the natives
into his service, built churches and convents, for there were women in
his company whom he placed in nunneries. This island, which figures
on early maps as Antillia and as Behaim, was known also as the Land
of the Seven Cities, from its seven bishoprics. When Coronado heard
of the pueblos of Arizona and New Mexico, he may have confounded
them with the towns of Oppas, and to this day the seven cities of
Cibola are a legend of our desert. Harold's Norsemen were told by
the wild Skraelings of Maine of a pale-faced people farther south,
who walked in processions, carrying white banners and chanting.

Near Florida was the island of Bimini, with its fountain of youth. Juan
and Luis Ponce de Leon sought it vainly among the Bahamas, then
crossed to Florida and kept up the search among the pine barrens,
the moss-bearded cypresses, the snaky swamps, and alligator infested
rivers. The Indians, strong, active, healthy with their simple,
outdoor life, their ignorance of wine and European diseases, seemed
so favored that the Spaniards believed they must have bathed in the
magic fountain and drank its waters. Green Cove Spring, near Magnolia,
is the one where Luis bathed, hoping that he had found at last the
restorative fountain; but an angry Indian shot a poisoned arrow through
his body, and neither prayers nor water stayed long the little life
that was in him. So the spring is in the unfound Bimini, after all.



The Buccaneers


How the free traders in the West Indies became smugglers, how by easy
stages they passed from the profession of illicit dealing to piracy,
are matters that concern history rather than legend. Their name of
buccaneers comes from buccan, an Indian word signifying a smoke-house,
in which beef and other meats were dried; as one of the earliest
enterprises of the rovers was the stealing of Spanish cattle in San
Domingo, and the drying of their flesh in the native buccans for use
at sea.

A general hatred or jealousy of Spain, that was shared by the English,
Dutch, and French, led to the first privateering expeditions. Indeed,
throughout the seventeenth century the pirates operated principally
against Spain, and were tolerated because of the injury they did to
her ships, her people, her property, and her trade. Having finally
ruined her commerce, they sacked her colonies, and, the lust for blood
and treasure having been roused to a sort of madness, they cast off
patriotic allegiances and became mere robbers and outlaws. The history
of the successes of L'Ollonois, Morgan, Davis, and the rest, is an
exciting though painful one, inasmuch as all sense of right and mercy
seems to have been crushed in the breasts of these men by their brutal
business. For a handful of dollars they were ready to wreck a city,
reduce even its ruins to ashes, slaughter women and babes, and cut
the throats of the aged. They were as harsh and treacherous toward one
another as they were toward peaceable men, and for acts of rebellion
against a leader they were killed off-hand, while it was customary,
also, to butcher a sailor whenever a chest of treasure was buried,
and place his body on or in the chest, that his ghost might guard it
and terrify intruders. Yet the ultimate influence of the buccaneers
was for good, inasmuch as they wrested a part of the rich Antilles from
the cruel and ignorant Spaniard and gave it to more enlightened powers.

When the freebooting days were at their height there was no harbor
of safety between Rio and Halifax; but there was, in every town the
rascals visited, an element that profited by their robberies: the
keepers of inns, brothels, and gaming-houses, and, lastly, the royal
governors. These bloody-fingered varlets would sack a church, get
tipsy on the communion wine, and demand the blessing of the priests on
the next enterprise of the same kind they had in contemplation. With
the chalices, candlesticks, and altar furnishings, they would go
to the nearest city, where they were sure of finding this friendly
element, and riot away the last piece of metal in their pockets; or,
if pipes of wine were among the prizes, any island would serve for
a long debauch. Devil's Island, the place of Dreyfus's captivity,
was a popular rendezvous, though it is so named not because of these
gatherings, but because of a particularly unmanageable prisoner who
was once confined there.

The governors of some of the West Indies were as keen on the scent
of the sea-robbers as the latter were in the chase of merchant-men,
and they were unable to see a good many sad goings-on when a few
pieces-of-eight were held before their eyes. Gaming was no disgrace
in those times, nor was hard drinking, nor coarse speech, and even
piracy had a sort of sanction when the victims were people of a nation
with whom the buccaneers were at war. Many tales of gamesters' luck
are told, but a couple will suffice. Vent-en-Panne, a Frenchman,
had received five hundred crowns as his share of a robbery, and on
the first night ashore, at Kingston, Jamaica, he staked and lost
it all, with three hundred more that a reckless comrade had lent to
him. Though penniless, he was not discouraged. He became a wine-drawer
and pipe-lighter in the tavern, and with a few pennies received for
tips he bet on the cards again. This time he won, and his fortune
mounted to twelve thousand crowns. With this amount in hand he felt
he could be virtuous, so he took ship for home, intending to settle
in Paris and fulfil the ambition of every honest Frenchman,--to own
a furnished room, fish in the Seine, and hear the bands play. He got
only as far as Barbadoes, for at that island a rich Jew came aboard,
persuaded him to play for a small amount, and lost everything to
Vent-en-Panne,--money, houses, sugar, and slaves. The fever was on
them both, however, and so soon as the Jew could borrow a little his
luck also turned, and Vent-en-Panne was stripped of every sou,--even
the clothes he wore. Paris became an iridescent dream, and the gambler
found his way to the Tortugas, where he doubtless shipped with Morgan,
Teach, or some other of the scourges of the Spanish main.

Two rovers are credited with beating the governor of Jamaica at another
game, after they had lost to him a matter of ten thousand crowns,--the
earnings of several weeks faithfully devoted to privateering. In
order to continue the game (to their complete beggary), the fellows
had borrowed from acquaintances in Kingston, who, seeing no way to get
their money back, decided to have them imprisoned for debt. Hearing of
this plan, the elder of the precious pair reported to the governor that
he had a negro whom he would like to sell, cheap, in order to pay his
debts and start in a mechanic trade, such as he had followed in years
gone by. The governor bade him have the fellow brought in, and finding
him to be a sturdy, intelligent man, with a skin as black as the ten
of clubs, he bought him and set him at work. Next day the negro had
disappeared. Notice and offers of reward were sent to all parts of the
island, but nothing came of it. The two ex-pirates followed a peaceful
and thriving trade of making keys, possibly for burglars, and in a few
years had saved enough to enable them to return to England. Before
sailing they called on the ex governor, who had drank and gambled
himself into poverty, and emptied a fistful of gold before him.

"That's for the nigger, with interest," said one.

"The nigger? What, the one that ran away?" asked the governor.

"Oh, he didn't run far. Here he is." And the speaker clapped his
companion on the shoulder. "He had only to curl his hair with a hot
iron and rub charcoal on his chops to deceive a governor."

The tickled old fellow drank their health and wished them a safe
journey, out of Jamaica.

While luck seemed to bide with the rovers, it was not always smooth
sailing on the Spanish seas. Now and then the buccaneers attacked
an innocent looking ship that waited until they had come within
musket-reach, when it ran up the Spanish standard, opened a dozen
ports, and let fly at them with hot-shot and a hail of bullets. Now
and again a mutiny would occur, and the victorious either forced the
defeated to walk the plank or marooned them on some desolate sand
key to perish of thirst and sunstroke.

Blackbeard's men once found a fishing-vessel drifting off the Burmudas
and eagerly boarded her to look for treasure. In a minute they tumbled
out of the cabin and scrambled into the sea like the swine possessed
of devils. The vessel had but one living man on board, and he had not
many hours of life before him, while corpses strewn about the floor
were spotted with small-pox. Half of the pirate crew were slain by
the pestilence.

When Roberts was cruising off Surinam a supposed war-ship bore down on
him in a fog. He pelted her with all his guns, but she kept her way
unheeding. The fog then breaking showed that it was not a frigate,
but a sloop, which had been magnified by the mist, and he quickly
grappled her and sent his men to see what manner of ship she was. Ten
or twelve Spaniards lying about the deck with their throats cut proved
that some other buccaneer had been before him. As the men were about
to leave their floating charnel-house to hold her way whither the
gales might send her, a furious swearing in Spanish caused them to
shiver and look back. Were the dead speaking? Had some crazed sailor
escaped, and was he gibbering from the roundtop? No: it was a parrot
in the rigging, and he was saying all he knew.

Montbar, having discovered a company of Spanish on one of the Windward
Islands, went ashore with guns, knives, and axes, and destroyed them
all, except one. This man told how he and his fellows had been put
ashore. They were the crew of a slaver, and were on their way from
Africa to Cuba with a cargo of slaves, when the ship began to leak
badly. The carpenter, accompanied by several of the more intelligent
of the blacks, made a careful inspection of the hold, yet could find
no leak; so the constant inflow, that kept all hands at the pumps,
was at length declared to be the devil's work. The slaves wailed and
wrung their hands, the captain swore and prayed, the crew toiled to
exhaustion. When it seemed as if the ship could not float for another
day the island appeared ahead, and quickly loading arms, provisions,
and water into the boats, the Spaniards abandoned ship and left the
negroes to their fate. Great was their surprise and dismay when the
slaves ran, cheering, over the deck, hoisted all sail, and squared away
for the eastward, the vessel rising higher in the water as her former
crew sat watching her. These blacks, who were confined in the hold,
had got possession of knives with which they cut through the outer
planking, causing the ship to leak alarmingly. They had also fitted
plugs to these leaks, and packed them with oakum, so that when the
carpenter made his rounds no water came in. As soon as he returned
to the deck the holes were opened again, for it was known that the
Antilles were near, and the scheme to frighten their captors to land
was successful. These facts the crew learned from the negro cook,
who had accompanied them to shore.

The devil, who was supposed in this case to have been the enemy instead
of the ally of the slavers, often mixed in the affairs of a class
that must have filled him with admiration. Some of the pirates are
reported to have placed themselves entirely in the hands of the foe of
the human race, swearing on strange objects to give their souls to him,
and formally burying a Bible on shore as a token that they were through
forever with religion and mercy. Yet they were a superstitious lot,
fearful of signs and portents, and do not, therefore, appear to have
been trusting subjects of His Satanic Majesty. They always had an ear
and a coin for a fortune-teller, and early in the eighteenth century
there were negroes and Indians in the West Indies and the tropic
Americas who openly practised that trade and art of witchcraft for
which their white brethren in Salem had been hanged. Their principal
customers were pirates and buccaneers, who went to them for a forecast
of fortune, and also bought charms that would create fair winds for
themselves and typhoons for their enemies. These witches kept open
ears in their heads, and information carelessly dropped by the outlaws
they sold for an aftermath of gain to the Spaniards, who found truth
in so many of the prophesies that they respected the soothsayers and
fully believed that the English were the chosen of the fiend.

Among the most trusted of the witches was a withered Indian woman
of Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas. She was close upon her fifth
score of years before she departed this life, but the rumor that she
had lived in New Providence since the flood was not denied, for it
made her the more regarded. Her best commodity was strings. For a
large price she would sell a string in which she had tied several
knots, each one of which represented the particular wind that the
captain might wish to prosper him on his way. Captain Condent was a
blaspheming corsair from the wicked town of New York, who had left
that port as quartermaster on a merchant-man and next morning had
appeared with a battery of pistols and had calmly taken the ship out
of the hands of her officers. This fellow had bought a string from
the witch that carried him to the Cape Verdes and back to America,
but when he had cut off all the knots, except two or three, he feared
that he might run out of winds altogether; so he put upon certain
servants of the Lord the task for which he had paid the servant of the
devil. He had with him two or three Spanish monks whom he had stolen
in the Cape Verdes, though what he wanted of them neither he nor they
could have guessed. They were having a most unhappy time of it. Now
and then the scallawag sailors would force them upon all fours, and
sitting astride their backs would compel them to creep about the deck,
pretending to be horses, while Condent whipped them smartly with the
rope's end. Thinking to save his precious twine, he ordered these
monks to pray for favoring winds, and he kept them on their marrow
bones petitioning from daylight until sunset. Often they would fall
exhausted and voiceless. At last, believing that the wind peddler
of Nassau had more power over the elements than a shipload of monks,
he threw the wretched friars overboard, and, as luck would have it,
the wind he wanted came whistling along a few minutes after.

He came to the end of his string at Zanzibar, where he was caught
in a tremendous storm, and was in hourly peril of destruction. His
masts had cracked, his sails had split, his water barrels had gone
by the board. It was time to hold the witch to her bargain. He swung
the cord about his head three times, called the woman's name, and
although eight thousand miles of sea and continent lay between them,
she heard the call. The string was pulled through his fingers so
smartly that it made them burn, and was whisked out of sight in the
wind and the spray. Within an hour the gale abated. Next day Condent
attempted to make his way by dead reckoning, but whenever he went
wrong a bird flew in his face, and a ship crowded with skeletons
approached him in the mist. He presently gained the Isle of Bourbon,
or Reunion, where his stealings enabled him to cut such a figure in
society that he married into the family of the governor and died in
an odor of--well, maybe it was sanctity. At all events, he died.

It was a witch also that had foretold the march of the buccaneers
across Panama isthmus, and her warning was considered of such
importance that the Spanish troops and merchants were notified, though
they made but a feeble resistance when the foray actually occurred.

One of the Spanish slavers bound for our coasts was overhauled by the
English pirate Lewis. She was a fast sailer and had nearly escaped
when Lewis ripped a handful of hair from his head, flung it to the
wind, and shouted, "Ho, Satan, keep that till I come." Instantly
the wind rose to a gale. In a few minutes the Spaniard was in the
hands of the pirates, and the slaves, being only an encumbrance,
were tossed overboard to the sharks, as one might fling away a damaged
cargo. One of the black men was a dwarf, gnarly, wrinkled, misshapen,
with eyes that blazed like a cat's in the dark. No sooner had this
man been pushed over the side than he uttered an ear-splitting yell,
and seemed to bound back to the deck. It was a cat, however, not a
human being, that was seen to rush into the cabin, and it looked into
Lewis's face with the same shining, menacing eyes that he had seen
in the dwarf. A negro boy who had been spared to act as a servant for
the captain having unconsciously roused his anger, Lewis rushed upon
him with his sword, cut him through the heart and beat his corpse,
the cat sitting by and squealing with glee at the sight. When a mate
struck at the animal in a tort of disgust and fear, the creature leaped
at him and almost blinded him with its claws. From that time the cat
became Lewis's familiar; was before him at the table, on his pillow
when he slept, on his shoulder when he gave orders. The crew agreed
that it could be none other than the devil himself. On Lewis's last
night alive, while he was quite drunk, the cat seemed to be whispering
into his ear. He arose and staggered away, saying, "The devil says
I shall be killed to-night." An hour later his ship was boarded by
French pirates, and Lewis was despatched. After scratching the faces
of nearly all the enemy, the cat ran up the mainmast, throwing off
sparks and screeching, scrambled to the end of the topsail-yard,
and leaped off into the night.

Morgan, the English sea robber, had captured a number of Spanish
prisoners in Panama, among them a woman of beauty and distinction, who
had been left without other protection than that of a faithless servant
during her husband's absence in Peru. The dignity and refinement of
his prisoner made a certain impression on Morgan. After he had put to
sea a cabin was reserved for her, she was treated with respect by the
crew, but a guard kept her in sight always. The gross nature of the
pirate disclosed itself in a few days, when, fresh from a debauch and
reeking with the odors of rum, he forced her cabin door and attempted
to embrace her. She sprang back with a cry of loathing, and grasping a
dagger swore that if he ever intruded himself in her presence again she
would drive the weapon into her own heart, since she could never hope
to reach his by any means, violent or gentle. In a fit of anger, the
pirate ordered his sailors to cast her into the hold among the slaves
and hostages, there to endure fever, crowding, hunger, and thirst.

A week or two later these lean, half-dead wretches were kicked out of
their dark and stifling dungeon to be sold to some planters. A woman
among them asked for a few words with Morgan. Haggard, tear-stained,
ragged, neglected as she was, the captain did not at first recognize
her as the one whom he had insulted by his show of love. When he did
recall her name and state he asked indifferently what she wanted. She
told him that an injustice had been done; that she had at first told
him it was in her power to buy her liberty, believing it to be so; but
her hope was destroyed, and she was so ill and wasted that she would
be useless as a slave. As she was going on board of the ship she had
whispered to a couple of Spanish priests telling them where her money
was concealed, and asking them to pay her ransom with it. They also
were under guard, but they persuaded one of the buccaneer officers to
go with them, recovered the money, bought their own freedom with it,
and ran away. Hearing this, Morgan sent the woman back to Panama,
succeeded in capturing the priests, and sold them into slavery.

It is said of Morgan that he had a fire ship, which he would tow
as close as possible to the fleets of his enemies, both to draw
their fire and kindle a more disastrous one. What appeared to be
its crew were logs of wood, placed upright between the bulwarks,
each log surmounted by a hat. As to fire, it is recorded that Teach,
or Blackbeard, now and then shut himself into his cabin and burned
sulphur to prove to his crew that he was a devil. He used to tie his
whiskers with red ribbons into pigtails that he tucked over his ears,
and he looked the part. Yet he was less of a monster than L'Olonnais,
who so hated Spaniards that he would not only slaughter his prisoners,
but would bite their hearts like a savage beast after he had cut them
out. Beside Blackbeard there was a Redbeard and a Bluebeard. All three
of these gentlemen had castles in St. Thomas, and that of Bluebeard
had a room in which it is alleged that he killed his wives after the
fashion of his Eastern relative.



The Boat of Phantom Children


Sir Francis Drake, destroyer of many of the "invincible" ships of
Spain, came to America with Sir John Hawkins, to subdue the Spanish
colonies with the heaviest fleet he ever commanded. Though wrangles
between the commanders made this expedition a comparative failure,
still wherever the head of a don was seen, a cracking blow was struck
at it. War was a crueller business then than it is to-day, in spite
of our high explosives, our armored ships, our mighty guns, and our
nimble tactics, and things were done that no captain would dare in
these times; at least, no captain with a fear of the world's rebuke,
or that of his own conscience. Just before Christmas, 1594, Drake
was scourging the coast of Colombia, burning houses, and shipping
and despoiling the towns. The people of one village near Rio de la
Hache, having been warned of his coming, buried their little property,
closed their houses, put fifty of their children on a fishing smack,
while they hurriedly provisioned some boats to carry all the people to
a distant cape, where they would remain in hiding until after Drake
had destroyed their homes and passed on. The fisherman who owned the
smack set sail too soon; he was separated from the others in a gale,
and Drake, who then appeared, ran between him and the shore, and with
a couple of shots drove him farther into the wild sea. The smack never
returned. After the English had passed, the people watched for it,
and, truly, on the next day, a boat was seen beating against the gale
and trying to make the pier. As it came nearer, the parents saw their
children holding out their arms and laughing. Then the outlines of the
hull and sail grew dim, the children's forms drooped as if weary; and
in another moment the vision had passed. Long was the grief and loud
were the curses on the English. When Drake learned that he had fired
on a harmless fishing vessel and driven a company of little ones away
from land to be sunk in a tempest, he was filled with compunction and
misgiving. The same vision that the parents had seen crossed the path
of his own ships. Before every storm the boat of phantoms appeared,
and when he sailed for Escudo and Porto Bello it followed him. Wearied
with many wars, ill with tropical fever, repentant for this useless
killing, he sank into a depression from which nothing could rouse him,
and in January he died on his ship, at Nombre de Dios. His remains were
consigned to a sailor's grave--the wide ocean--and as the ship moved
on her way, the crew, looking back to the place where the body had gone
down, saw the phantom smack rise from the deep, rush like a wind-blown
wrack across the spot, and melt into the air as it neared the shore.



Early Porto Rico


Though Columbus made his first landing in Porto Rico at Naguabo,
where the Caribs afterward destroyed a Spanish settlement, he gave its
present name to the island when he put in Aguada for water. Charmed
with the beauty of the bay, the opulence of vegetation, the hope
of wealth in the river sands, he christened it "the rich port,"
and extending this, applied to the whole island the name of San Juan
Bautista de Puerto Rico--St. John the Baptist of the Rich Port. The
natives knew their island as Boriquen. Later came Ponce de Leon,
who founded Caparra, now Pueblo Viejo, across the bay from San Juan,
to which spot he shifted a little later and built the white house
that may still be seen. San Juan is the oldest city of white origin
in the Western world, except Santo Domingo, albeit Santiago de Cuba
and Baracoa claim to be contemporary. The body of Ponce is buried in
San Juan, in the church of Santo Domingo.

When this fair island was claimed by Spain, it had a population of
over half a million, but Ponce at once set about the extinction of
the native element. The populace was simple, affectionate, confiding,
and in showing friendship for the invaders it invited and obtained
slavery. It has been ingeniously advanced that the Spaniards disliked
the natives because of the cleanliness of the latter. On account
of the heat they wore no clothing, to absorb dirt and perspiration,
and bathed at least once every day. In those times white people were
frugal in the use of water, Spain being more pronounced against it than
almost any other nation. Listen to one of the Spanish writers, though
he is talking, not of our Indians, but of the Moors: "Water seems more
needed by these infidels than bread, for they wash every day, as their
damnable religion directs them to, and they use it in baths, and in a
thousand other idle fashions, of which Spaniards and other Christians
can make little account." We know that a Spanish queen refrained,
not only from washing, but from changing her clothes for a whole
year. The Porto Ricans were naked, but unaware of their nakedness,
therefore they were moderately virtuous; at least, more virtuous than
their conquerors. Had they been treated with justice and mercy they
would have remained friendly to the white men, and would have been
of great service to them in the development of the island. As early
as 1512, Africans were shipped to the island to take the places, at
enforced labor, of the Indians who had been destroyed. A religion was
forced down the throats of the natives that they did not understand,
especially as the friars preached it; and being unable at once to grasp
the meaning or appreciate the value of discourses on the spiritual
nature, the trinity, vicarious atonement, transubstantiation, and the
intercession of saints, the soldiers, always within call, followed
their custom when the congregations proved intractable: killed them.

It is said that the Spaniards acquired such ease in the slaying of
Indians that they would crack a man's head merely to see if it would
split easily or if their swords were keeping their edge, and that they
varied their more direct and merciful slaughters by roasting one of
the despised infidels occasionally. Slavery in damp mines, fevers in
swamps, unaccustomed work, strain, anxiety, grief, insufficient food,
lack of liberty, separation from friends and families, killed more
than the sword. It was the same in all the conquered lands. In Hayti
a million people were oppressed out of existence or slain outright
in fifteen years, and but sixty-five thousand were left. In less
than a century that island had not a single native. So in Porto
Rico: not a man is to be found there to-day who is a pure-blooded
aborigine. Even their relics and monuments, their traditions and
history, were obliterated by their conquerors--the race that destroyed
the libraries of the Moors and the picture records of the Aztecs. Few
even of their burial places are known, although the Cave of the Dead,
near Caguana, was so named because of the Indian skeletons found in it.

Some of the tools and implements of stone found on the island are
so strange that one cannot even guess their purpose. Of the heavy
stone collars that have been preserved, a priest holds that they
were placed about the necks of the dead, that the devil might not
lift them out of their graves, but this sounds like an invention of
the church, for there is no proof that a belief in the devil existed
among these people. They had a god, as well as minor spirits, and sang
hymns to them; they had some crafts and arts, for they made canoes,
huts, chairs, nets, hammocks, pottery, weapons, and implements,
and, although the fierce Caribs vexed them now and again, they were
accounted as the gentlest and most advanced of the native people in the
Antilles. Speaking of the hammock, that is one of their devices that
the world has generally adopted, and the name is one of the few Indian
words that have survived the Spanish oppressions, though there are many
geographic titles. Other familiar survivals are the words hurricane,
canoe, tobacco, potato, banana, and a few other botanical names.

It is probable that these Boriqueños were allied in speech and custom,
as well as in blood, to their neighbors the Haytiens, of whom saith
Peter Martyr, "The land among these people is common as sun and
water. 'Mine' and 'thine,' the seeds of all mischief, have no place
among them. They are content with so little that in this large country
they have more than plenty. They live in a golden world without toil,
in open gardens, not intrenched, defended, or divided. They deal truly
with one another, without laws, judges, or books. He that will hurt
another is an evil man, and while they take no pleasure in superfluity,
they take means to increase the roots that are their food--diet so
simple that their health is assured." Still, it is known that in their
defence against the marauding Caribs the Porto Ricans were courageous,
and had become adept with arrow and club, and it was believed by some
of the first explorers that they ate their captives.

The aborigines of Porto Rico probably differed little, if at all, from
the Haytiens in their faith in an all-powerful, deathless god, who
had a mother but no father, who lived in the sky and was represented
on earth by zemes or messengers. Every chief had his zemi, carved
in stone or wood, as a tutelary genius, to whom he addressed his
prayers and who had a temple of his own. Zemes directed the wind,
waves, rains, rivers, floods, and crops, gave success or failure in
the hunt, and gave visions to or spoke with priests who had worked
themselves into a rhapsodic state by the use of a drug (it may have
been tobacco), in order to receive the message, which often concerned
the health of a person or of a whole village. The Spaniards regarded
these manitous as images of the devil, and in order to keep them the
natives hid the little effigies from the friars and the troops. In
the festivals of these gods there were dances, music, and an offering
of flower-decorated cakes.

Hayti was the first created, the sun and moon came from the cave near
Cape Haytien known as _la voute a Minguet_, through a round hole in
the roof. Men came from another cave, the big ones through a large
door, the little men from a smaller one. They were without women for
a long time, because the latter lived in trees and were slippery;
but some men with rough hands finally pulled four of them down from
the branches, and the world was peopled. At first, the men dared to
leave their cave only at night, for the sun was so strong it turned
them to stone, though one man who was caught at his fishing by the
sun became a bird that still sings at night, lamenting his fate. When
a chief was dying in pain he was mercifully strangled,--though the
common people were allowed to linger to their end,--and his deeds were
rehearsed in ballads sung to the drum. There was a belief in ghosts,
albeit they could not be seen in the light, unless in a lonely place,
nor by many persons. When they did mingle with the people it was
easy to distinguish them from the living, as they had no navel. What
became of the wicked after death we do not know, but the good went
to a happy place where they met those whom they loved, and lived
among women, flowers, and fruits. During the day the departed souls
hid among the mountains, but peopled the fairest valleys at night,
and in order that they should not suffer from hunger the living were
careful to leave fruit on the trees.

From these quaint and simple faiths the people were roused by the
professors of a more enlightened one, who made their teaching useless,
however, if not odious, to the brown people by their practises. It was
an old belief, at least among the Haytiens, that a race of strangers,
with bodies clad, would cross the sea and would reduce the people
to servitude. This prophecy may have made them the more unwilling
to yield to the Spaniards, in respect of religious faith, despite
the signs and wonders that were shown to them. When chief Guarionex
raided a Spanish chapel and destroyed the sacred images within,
the shattered statues were buried in a garden, and the turnips and
radishes planted there came up in the form of the cross. But even
this did not convince the savages, whom it became necessary to burn,
in order to smooth the way to reform.



The Deluge


Like many unschooled peoples, the Antillean tribes had their legend of
a time when the earth was covered by a flood. The island of St. Thomas
was one of the first to rise out of the sea. The Haytiens said that
the deluge did not subside and that the present islands are the
summits of mountains that formerly towered to a great height above
the plains. Far back in the days when people lived more simply, and
white men, with their abominable contrivings for work, had not even
been invented, a _cacique_ or chief of their island killed his son,
who had tried to harm him, albeit when the lad was dead a natural
affection prompted the father to clean his bones and conceal them
in a gourd. Some time afterwards the _cacique_ and his wife opened
this vegetable tomb, to look on the mortal relics of their child,
when a number of fish jumped out. Believing that he now had in the
gourd a magic receptacle, from which he could take food at any time,
the chief placed it on his roof, where mischief-makers might not reach
it. While absent on a hunting-trip his four surviving sons took down
the gourd to see what peculiar properties it had, and why it had been
thus set apart. In passing it from one to the other it fell and was
broken into little pieces. Instantly a vast quantity of water gushed
from it, increasing in volume every instant. The water arose so that it
reached their knees, and they had to climb the hills. Whales, sharks,
porpoises, dolphins, and smaller creatures came swimming forth, and
the flow of the water never ceased until the whole world was flooded,
as we see it now, for the ocean came from that gourd.



How Spaniards were Found to be Mortal


The first Spaniards to reach the American islands were everywhere
greeted as heavenly visitors, and the natives would not have been
astonished had the caravels spread their sails--their wings, as they
first were called--and flown into the clouds, carrying Columbus and his
wrangling, jealous, sensual, gold-greedy company with him. Afterward
they would have been more astonished than sorry. When the white men
discovered this simple faith among the savages they encouraged it,
for it induced the Indians to give up their wives, daughters, houses,
weapons, and, above all else, their gold, to the strangers. The little
bells and beads they gave in return were treasured because of their
celestial origin and adored as fervently as the bones of saints are
adored in some of the European churches. Everywhere and always the
demand was for gold, and in the belief that the supply was going to
last forever, Spain began to ruin herself with more industry than
she had ever shown in peaceful callings. Her wars, her splendors,
her vanities, her neglect of education and morality, bore their fruit
when she pulled her flag down from the staff on Havana's Moro, and
gave up her claims to the last foot of land in the Western world.

Ponce de Leon permitted the fiction that the Spaniards were
angels--save the mark!--for it smoothed his progress in stripping
the Porto Ricans of their poor little possessions, taking their lands
for settlement, foraging over the island, forcing his religion upon
them, and compelling them to serve him as miners, carriers, farmers,
fishermen, and laborers. Many died because it was thought to be cheaper
to work them to death and get fresh ones than to feed them. After a
time the Indians began to have doubts, and when the friars enlarged
on the glories of heaven, and described it as the abode of Spaniards,
more of them than Hatuey were anxious to be allowed to go to the
other place. They did not at first dare to attack the intruders,
for what could men avail against gods, and of what use were spears
and clubs against their thunderous arms and smashing missiles?

As the aggressions increased and became less and less endurable,
Chief Agueynaba resolved, out of the soreness of his heart, to test
this reputed immortality of his guests. A messenger, one Salzedo, was
to be sent away from San Juan on some official errand, with a little
company of natives as freighters and servants. This was Agueynaba's
chance. He ordered his men to slip Salzedo into a river and hold him
under water for a time. If he was an immortal this would not hurt
him, and if he died, why--they would try very hard to bear up under
the loss. While crossing the river--the spot is still shown--the
men who bore Salzedo on their shoulders pitched him off and detained
him beneath the surface for a couple of hours; then, fearing that he
might be still alive and vicious, they put him on a bank and howled
apologies to his remains for three days. By that time there was no
longer a doubt about his deadness. Reports of this discovery traversed
the island with the speed of a South American mail service, so that
within a week people even forty miles away had heard about it. Thus
encouraged to resistance by the discovery that white men were mortal,
the populace fell upon their persecutors and troubled them, although
after one defeat the Spaniards rallied and drove the Indians back to
the mines.



Ponce


When Ponce de Leon visited and conquered Porto Rico he heard of the
elixir of life. It may not have been among the springs of that island,
but the natives had a faith in it and some of them referred it to the
Bahamas. Their possible reason for this was to persuade the white men
to go there and look for it, for they were not popular in Porto Rico,
and this was the more to be regretted in Ponce's case, because he was
far from popular at home. At the court of Ferdinand and Isabella was
a page who was handsome, spirited, and saucy. One of the daughters of
the royal pair, wearied with the forms and ceremonies of her state,
which, in the most punctilious court in Europe, were especially
trying, found means to converse with this well-appearing, quick-witted
scamp. A tattling courtier, recalling a _faux pas_ of the last queen,
and desiring no more scandals, reported that the princess had been
seen to smile on the youngster. No guilt was proven upon him, but
handsome pages were ill-chosen company for young women of blue blood.

Ponce de Leon was the page, and he was sent to the New World
to discover something to the advantage of his own modesty, and
incidentally to accumulate for shipment anything that might be useful
to the Spanish treasury. He landed in Boriquen, as Porto Rico was
then called, and began a general subjugation and slaughter of the
natives. Some were slain in battle, but thousands were carried away
and made to work in mines and on distant plantations, as slaves, until
their health was destroyed, and they, too, were no longer an obstacle
to Spanish control, though the lack of their hands was a hindrance to
Spanish enterprise. Ponce took his share of the gold and treasure he
had forced these unfortunates to supply, and went back to Spain with
it. Sea air had spoiled his complexion, fighting had roughened his
manners, slave-driving had made his voice coarse. Possibly, also,
his princess had recovered from her disappointment. Maybe she had
been married off to some nobody of Portugal, or France, or Austria,
for state reasons, and had entered on the usual loveless life of
royalty. Or she may have beguiled her maidenly solitude by drinking
much wine of Oporto, Madeira, and Xeres with her dinner, thereby
acquiring that amplitude of girth, that ruddiness of countenance, and
that polish of nose, which add so little to romance. At all events,
we hear nothing more of the affair.

In the course of years Ponce took to himself the gout, rheumatism,
dyspepsia, and a few such matters, and he scolded his dresser more than
usual because his clothes did not fit at the waist as they had done,
once. He parted his hair with a towel, and it was grizzled where
it curled about his neck and temples. Then he recalled the tales
the Boriqueños had told of the bright waters that gushed from the
earth amid banks of flowers,--waters so sweet that who drank would
drink again, and with every draught would throw off years and pain
until at last he was a youth once more,--a youth with hot blood,
sparkling eyes, lithe muscles; a youth who saw the world full of
beauty and adventure. Ah, to be once more as he was when the princess
beamed on him; to throw away his cares, his ails, his conscience,
his regrets; to sing and dance, to ruffle it with other cavaliers,
to dice, to drink, to feast, to win the smiles of ladies! It was a
joy worth trying to attain.

He sailed once more, an older, sober man. He discovered Florida,
bathed in its springs, drank from its flower-edged streams, but to no
avail. Bimini, the place of the living waters, evaded him. Boriquen,
renamed Porto Rico, could offer no more. But, though his living
presence passed, the first building on the island--the White House,
near San Juan--remains, and he left his name in the town that was
first among the Antillean cities to raise the flag of a republic
that should wave over the continent he had helped to discover and
colonize:--the city of Ponce.



Water Caves


As in most of the Spanish American countries, so in Porto Rico, ghosts
are common,--so common that in some towns the people hardly turn to
look at them; and if on a wild night in the hurricane season they hear
them gibbering at their doors, they patter an _ave_ or throw a piece of
harness at the disturbance, and sleep again. Ponce, for instance, has
a number of these spooks, such as the man who searches for his hidden
money, and the child with a snowy face that knocks on the panes, then
stares fixedly in, with corpse eyes, at the windows. Best known among
these supernatural citizens are two lovers who "spoon" on dark nights,
and are faintly outlined on the landscape as figures of quivering,
smoky blue. Their favorite haunt is their death-place, eight miles
from Ponce, in a hollow among limestone hills, now environed by a
coffee plantation. Here are found three basins--results of erosion,
most likely--that are described as natural bath-tubs. The middle and
largest of these pools is partly filled with silt, probably occluding
the entrance to a cavern which formerly opened into it, a fathom or
so below the water-surface. This cave was the hiding-place of a native
woman whose father had discovered her love for one of Ponce de Leon's
soldiers. He forbade her to have anything to do with the enemies of
his country, enlarged on their rapacity, cruelty, and treachery,
and tried to create in her a sense of shame that she should have
chosen a Spaniard, instead of a Boriqueno chief, for a lover. There
were no locksmiths in the Antilles for love to laugh at, but there
were spears and knives to fear, and the young couple, who seemed to
be inspired by genuine affection, met at this lonely spot to do their
courting. On the least suspicion of a hostile approach, the maid could
slip into the water, enter the cave, and wait for an hour or a day,
until the intruder had retired. However it happened nobody could
tell,--or would,--but the Spaniard was found drowned one morning in
that pool. He may have been found waiting there, by the angry parent,
thrown in, on general principles, and held to the bottom by his steel
arms and armor; or he may have been trying to find the cave in which
his charmer had secreted herself, and while so engaged may have bumped
his head against the rocky wall and stunned himself, or he may have
been a poor swimmer and lost his wits and his wind. At all events,
drowned he was, and the dusky virgin who loved him, seeing his form
at the bottom of the water, sang her sorrow chant, dived in, and,
holding to his body, perished wilfully at his side. Their love endures,
and that is why their luminous shadows sit at the brink of the pool,
with locked arms and meeting lips, to the disgust of voting women
and confirmed bachelors.

This legend, with variants, is found in many parts of the world. There
are two or three instances of it in the Hawaiian islands, and a
tradition pertaining to Hayti is worth quoting here, as it refers to
the same period and illustrates the same enmity between the white and
native races. Near the city of San Domingo is, or was, a "water cave,"
so named because the entrance to it was several feet below the lake
whose shore it undermines. When the young half-breed, Diaz, returned
from Spain to his native island of Hispaniola in 1520, his mother,
Zameaca, queen of the Ozamas, had disappeared, possibly killed outright
by the Spaniards, or more slowly killed by enslavement at the mines in
vainly trying to satisfy the rapacity of the white race for gold. Diaz,
though partly of Spanish blood, was allied in his sympathies to the
Indians. Hence, they planned to make him ruler. Their conspiracy was
quelled for the time being, with such brutality that those natives
who escaped death hated their tyrants with a deeper hatred than
ever, and fixed them the more strongly in their resolution to be
avenged. The leading chiefs and warriors of the Ozamas took refuge
in the water cave, spying on their enemies and going about to make
converts among the islanders at night. It was not long before the
watchful Spaniards discovered that mischief was afoot, and there
were reasons for believing that the chiefs had their hiding place not
many miles from town. By following various suspects into the country,
and noticing the time and way of their return, they became convinced
that the leaders of the rebellion were somewhere near the lake.

A young woman, a slave in the family of the Spanish governor, was
so often absent on mysterious errands that the authorities at last
fixed on her as the one most likely to betray her countrymen. She was
won to their purpose through her vanity. Her mistress had a comb of
elaborate and curious workmanship, and to have one like it was the
principal object in her existence. The governor told her that she
should have this priceless treasure itself if she would tell him
where the chiefs were meeting. To this act of treachery she finally
agreed on condition that her lover, who was one of the chiefs, should
be pardoned. That evening she carried bread and fruit to the lake,
and sitting on the bank sang loudly for some minutes. The Spanish
soldiers, who were watching from the shrubbery, were astonished to
see a man rise like a seal from the water, swim to the shore, take
the parcel from the girl's hands, exchange a few words with her,
and disappear again beneath the surface. The song was a signal for
one of the men to come out and receive the food, and it was heard
through a crevice in the cave roof. Next day the girl sang again,
and the whole company left the cave. They had no sooner gained the
shore than the Spaniards sprang from the shrubbery and surrounded
them. As they were led away to death, one of the chiefs levelled
his finger at the girl and said, "I am going to a land of peace. You
will never find the way to it." Her lover cast her off with bitter
reproaches. Then, as the murderous volley pealed across the fields,
and the rebellion was ended, her heart broke. She still sits at the
lakeside in the evening, weeping over her comb.



How a Dutchman Helped the Spaniards


Had any Dutchman been charged with intending a kindness to the dons
when his country was smarting under the Spanish scourge he would
have offered the life of some distant relative to disprove the
accusation. Without a guess that he could be injuring his own land
and enriching that of his enemy, an innocent magistrate of Amsterdam
did that for which he would afterward have submitted to the abuse of
his friends, and if sackcloth and ashes had been in vogue he would
have worn them. It all came about through his wish to be pleasant
to a Frenchman, the same being Louis XIV. He sent to this monarch a
curiosity in the form of a young coffee-tree, thinking, no doubt, that
a warm corner could be found for it in the Jardin des Plantes among
the orchids and cacti, and little recking that Louis had a Spanish
father-in-law. At that time Holland enjoyed, in her colonies, almost
a monopoly of the coffee trade of the world, but that one little tree
broke her monopoly, just as one little leak in her dikes led to the
eating away of miles of earthen wall and an in-rush and devastation
of the sea.

For Louis was more clever than some other kings, almost clever enough
to have been in trade, or else he had smart advisers. He had slips
cut from the coffee tree, and ere many moons had passed a promising
dozen of young plants were ready for shipment to Martinique, the
new French colony in the Antilles. A botanist was sent in charge of
them, it being the purpose of Louis to turn the island into a coffee
plantation and be free of obligation to Holland. The voyage was long,
because of head winds and storms, and the precious plants were in
peril. Long before the American shores were reached the water supply
had run low, and there was much suffering; yet the loyal botanist gave
up half of his daily allowance in order that his coffee-trees should
live. Salt water would have killed them, and in those days ships had
no distilling apparatus. Martinique was reached in safety, however,
the little trees struck their roots into congenial soil, and thus the
seeds, such as first yielded their aroma to a surprised and gratified
Abyssinian chief more than a thousand years before, now spring from
the strong earth of the Western world. Whether Spaniards stole some
of these trees, or bought them, or whether they got away by accident,
certes, they reached Porto Rico, and so became a source of pleasure
and profit to people whom the Dutchman did not have in mind when he
made his little gift to King Louis. It is believed that all the coffee
raised in Batavia for the Dutch also grew from a handful of seeds
that had been sent from Arabia to Java. And, oh, that ever the time
should have come when France had to buy coffee from her own plant in
Porto Rico, and send to that same island for logwood to make claret
with,--the kind she sells to New York for bohemian tables d'hote!



The Ghost of San Geronimo


The castle of San Geronimo, San Juan de Porto Rico, was founded
a century ago. It occupies a rocky point at the east end of San
Juan Island, and year by year had been strengthened until, when the
American ships appeared in the offing, it was thought important enough
to garrison. Six guns were emplaced, two other gun mounts were found by
our troops when they entered, and a hole was discovered extending from
a dungeon fifteen feet toward the breastworks. This had been freshly
dug, and, it is believed, was devised for the storage of explosives,
that the citadel might be blown up when the boys in blue entered to
take possession. That the fort was abandoned without resorting to
this revengeful and unmilitary act may be due to the ghost. He would
naturally be in evidence at such a time, and would do what he could
to thwart the schemes of his enemies. For he gave his body to the
worms fifty years or more ago. In the flesh he was a revolutionist,
and had been dreaming vain things about liberty for his beloved
island. It is not recorded that he ever harmed any one, or that
his little insurrection attained the dignity of anything more than
a rumor and an official chill, but the Spaniards caught him, threw
him into the dark prison of this castle, and after he had undergone
hunger, thirst, and illness, they went through their usual forms
of trial and condemned him to death. This among the civilized would
have meant that he would be sent to the gallows or the garrote; but
this victim was alleged to have accomplices, and quite likely he was
suspected of having a small fund; for the first thing to do when you
overthrow a government, or want to, is to pass the hat. To secure the
names of his fellow-conspirators, but more especially their money,
the revolutionist was therefore consigned to the torture chamber,
where the rack, the thumb-screw, the hot irons, the whip, and other
survivals of the Inquisition were applied. When the officers had
extorted what they wanted, or had made sure there was nothing to
extort, the poor, white wreck of a human being was delivered by the
judges to an executioner, and a merciful death was inflicted.

Shortly after this occurrence the officers of the San Geronimo garrison
began to request transfers, and the social set that had been formed in
and near the castle was broken up. Gradually the troops thinned away,
and although the works were kept in moderate repair and occasionally
enlarged, the regular force was finally withdrawn, and even the
solitary keepers who were left in charge died unaccountably. This
was because the ghost of the tortured one pervaded its damp rooms
and breathed blights and curses on the occupants. Its appearance was
always heralded by a clatter of hoofs on the stone bridge leading
into the court. The on-rush of spectre horses is variously explained,
some believing that the dead man is leading an assault on the fort,
others wondering if it may not be a conscience-smitten governor
hurrying to rescue or reprieve his victim, and arriving too late,--a
theory quite generally rejected on the ground that there never was
that kind of a Spanish governor.

An American officer, who took up his home in San Geronimo after the
occupation, was disturbed for three successive nights by the ghost,
and on learning the tradition of the place he investigated the palace
and brought to light the torture chamber with its rows of hooks and
rings and chains about the walls. The piercing of its roof, so that
the sun came in and the ghosts and malaria went out, the removal of
the grim relics of mediævalism, the cleaning and whitewashing of the
apartments, have probably induced the spectre to take up his quarters
elsewhere, for his old haunts are hardly recognizable, and he can have
no grudge against the soldiers of a republic who carried out his plans
with a perfection and promptness of which he could not have dreamed.

The climate of the West Indies has ever been favorable to the
preservation of spirits, and this haunted castle of San Juan has
counterparts in the island, and in other islands, and the ghosts are
not always victims of the Spaniards, either. The appearance of spectres
in the New World was almost contemporary with Columbus. Indeed,
one of the most startling of supernatural appearances occurred in
the town he founded,--the town of Isabella, Hayti, the first white
man's city in America. It was created by the great navigator on his
second voyage, but it remained for only a few years on the map. The
dons whom he brought with him refused to work, even when the colony
was starving, and reported him in Spain as a tyrant for asking them
to put up their own shelters, cook their own food, and grind their
own flour. They would not even work in the mines where gold could
be seen in the river sands, because they had expected to pick up
the metal in lumps, or force it from the natives in such quantities
that each adventurer might return with a bushel. Hardship, illness,
short commons, the need of occasional labor, the heart-breaks over the
gold failure, the retaliations of the natives for the cruelties and
injustices of the invaders, led to the rapid decline of the city of
Isabella. Its foundations may still be visible; at least they were a
few years ago; but it is peopled only by ghosts. Some years after it
had been deserted, two Spaniards, who had been hunting in that part
of the island, entered its ruined streets. They had heard from the
Indians of strange, booming voices that echoed among its dead houses,
but had dismissed this tale as invention or fancy. The sun was low
and mists were gathering. As the hunters turned a corner they were
astonished to see a company of cavaliers drawn up in double rank, as
if for parade, sword on hip, plumed hats aslant, big booted, leather
jacketed, grim, and silent. The two men asked whence they had come. The
cavaliers spoke no word, but all together lifting their hats in salute,
lifted their heads off with them, then melted into air. They were
the dead of the fated town. The two spectators fainted with horror,
and did not recover their peace of mind in many days.



Police Activity in Humacao


For three centuries a Spanish convict station was kept in Porto
Rico. The unpleasant and undesirable found, not a welcome here,
but a more congenial company than in the home land. Life was easier
because one needed less food and clothes, and they were furnished
by the authorities, anyway. What with the convicts and discontented
slaves, it is a wonder that any sort of comfort or safety existed on
the island, and especially that so much of pleasant social life was
to be found in the cities. Those who knew Porto Rico in those days,
however, say that class distinctions were not sharply marked; that
the master was kind to the slave, and the slave felt as if he were a
member of his master's family, rather than a dependent; that the two
were often seen at the cockpit sitting elbow to elbow, kneeling side
by side in the same church, greeting the same friends or cracking
the heads of the same enemies before the church doors at Epiphany,
and in the humbler homes sitting at the same table.

In those simple times the robber gangs were a great vexation. Killing
was something to grow used to, and a disagreement over cards was
liable to result in having one's head snipped off by a machete; but to
be robbed of one's machete, or of one's jug of rum, or of one's only
trousers, was a sad affliction, and soldiers and police were as active
as Spanish functionaries could persuade themselves to be, in running
down--or walking down--these outlaws. It is said that the detectives
were especially amusing. They would go about in such obvious disguises,
with misfit wigs, window-glass spectacles, and the costumes of priests
or notaries, that a robber could barely keep his countenance when he
met them in the street. The thief always escaped, either through the
incompetence of the officers, or by sharing his profits with them.

But there was one fellow who made such trouble that the police
began to chafe beneath the public criticism. To impugn their honor
did not hurt them much, though they ruffled a good deal under it,
but to threaten them with reduction of pay or removal was a serious
matter; so the chief of the San Juan constabulary bestirred himself,
after a particularly daring robbery had occurred in his bailiwick,
the rogue making off with six thousand dollars' worth of jewelry. He
got safely away from town and was traced to Humacao, where his
footprints were found leading to the door of a small, tumble-down,
deserted house, and none of these prints could be seen with toes
pointing away from it. The chief dismissed his men and prepared to
conduct a siege. He had a dagger, a machete, two pistols, and a gun,
with a box of ammunition. Thus equipped he went to the front door,
gave it a sounding whack with the flat of his machete, and bawled,
"Open, in the name of the law!"

There was no response, so he struck his weapon impatiently against
the panels two or three times and called on the bandit to emerge
and give himself up. Again there was no reply. A bolder move was
necessary. He pushed open the window, crouching down outside, that he
might not become a target for the fellow, who was probably lurking
in the dark interior, and after calling on him for a third time to
appear and go to jail, he thrust his firearms in and began to blaze
in all directions over the floor.

After emptying the pistols and gun he shouted, "If you don't come
out I'll blow you to the bad place, for I have one hundred and fifty
cartridges here, and I can surely shoot you."

All this time the robber had been lying on the floor, just below
the window, very flat and very still. As the chief did not show
himself to take aim, but reached up from his kneeling position and
fired at random, the bold, bad man in-doors began to feel a return
of confidence. He waited until a second fusillade was over, when
he slipped softly through the back door, went around to the front,
waited until a third volley had been fired, when he pounced on the
chief from behind, and in a trice had a stout rope around him. In
a few seconds more he had the astonished and indignant functionary
tied securely to one of the posts of the veranda. Then, calmly taking
possession of the weapons, he lifted his hat, wished the officer a
very good day and a pleasant siesta, and sauntered off to some other
town where the police were still less active.



The Church in Porto Rico


If the Spanish colonies have been immoral, it must be granted that they
have been religious. This fact has made them easier to govern, for the
words of the priests and friars have been accepted as divinely inspired
at times when, as a matter of fact, they have been inspired only by the
governor or the garrison colonel. The church in the colonies is nothing
like the modern and American institution that we know. It is a survival
from the Middle Ages. Yet it has shown shrewdness in Porto Rico,
Cuba, and the Philippines, its prosperity proving that the Spaniard
can be a thrifty mortal whether he wears a monkish cowl or a military
uniform. Much money has been demanded by the church, but much of it has
been honestly spent in the beautifying of altars and the dressing of
the statues. Our Lady of the Remedies, in the Church of La Providencia,
San Juan, for example, wears a cloak worth fifteen hundred dollars,
and is emblazoned with twenty thousand dollars' worth of jewels; but
then, she is the patron of the island. The priests have been quick to
see an advantage in benefits or disasters and have often impressed
the natives by lessons drawn from natural phenomena. Thus, in 1867,
a conspiracy for the overthrow of Spanish rule had been organized,
and violence was hourly expected: but on the eve of an uprising the
island was shaken by an earthquake. The priests made the most of
this, assuring the natives that it was a warning from heaven never
to interfere with Spaniards; so the insurrectos stealthily laid down
their arms and stole away to their various substitutes for employment,
leaving their Lexington unfought.

In one way this willingness to keep out of fights has been a
bad thing for the island, because insurrection became a matter
of business with some of the natives. They used it as a mode of
blackmail. These insurrectos would throw a wealthy planter into a
state of alarm by pretending to hold meetings on his premises. He knew
that if the authorities got wind of this it might go hard with him,
for if he were suspected of being a member of a lodge of the White
Saber or the Red Hand, it could mean imprisonment, perhaps death;
so he paid the revolution something to move on and occur on some
other man's land. By levying thus on fear and policy a few members
of an alleged junta managed to live quite comfortably without work,
and it is whispered that the padres of certain villages received
their share of the reluctant tributes.

Porto Rico has been the place of abode of some noted fathers of
the church, including two martyrs who were canonized by Pius IX. as
saints: Charles Spinola and Jerome de Angelis. They left Portugal
for Goa in 1596, but having been blown far out of their course,
they put in at this island to repair their ship, and there for two
months they preached with success. On their return to Lisbon they
were captured by English pirates, who treated them kindly, however,
and set them safely down in London. They reached Portugal eventually,
and ended their work in Japan, where the people killed them. These and
other saints receive the prayers of the people on stated occasions,
for in Porto Rico the saints have not only their special days, but
their special crops, and guard them from special injuries. Thus, the
farmer prays to St. James, it is said, when he asks for deliverance
from tobacco-worms, while he must address St. Martial if he wants to
free his field from ants.

Of the holy hermits who have resided on the island, several have
dwelt in the caves where Caribs or Arawaks buried their dead, but
the best-known shrine is that of Hormigueros. The Church of Our Lady
of Monserrate, which crowns a hill and is a conspicuous landmark,
is said to have been copied from the chapel of a Benedictine
monastery in Barcelona, which is famous in Spain for its statue of
the Virgin, carved by St. Luke and carried to Barcelona in the year
50 by St. Peter. The Monserrate church was founded in 1640 by a poor
farmer. He had been ploughing over the hill-top, though weak with
fever, and before he could finish his work he fell to the ground
exhausted. After he had partly recovered, and had gone back to the
plough, he turned a tile up from the earth, on which was engraved a
portrait of the Virgin, and no sooner had he taken this object into his
hands than his pain, his fever, his lassitude disappeared. Convinced
that the relic was sacred, he carried it to his priest, and on that
very day he gave the land he had ploughed for a votive church. It
has become the best known sanctuary in Porto Rico, for the large
painting of the Virgin, copied from the smaller portrait on the tile,
is just as potent as the original in curing diseases. In the last
half-century a hundred miracles have been performed, and the silver
and golden arms, legs, ears, eyes, fingers, feet, livers, and hearts
that have been given to the church, in thanks and testimony, amount
in value to sixty thousand dollars; for a patient who has been cured
or helped is expected to send a little model, in precious metal, of
the part of him that needed mending. At intervals these offerings are
melted up for the altar service and decorations, and few churches in
America have such resplendent candlesticks, chalices, draperies and
vestments. The altar is of silver plates, and the gold cross upon
it weighs thirteen pounds. Pilgrims to Hormigueros go from all parts
of the West Indies. They are lodged, free of charge, in an old house
behind the church, each cripple or invalid receiving a bed and chair,
but no food. The pilgrims must supply their own sustenance. On entering
the church, in procession, they are sprinkled with water from the
Jordan, and then kneel before the cross, where the cures are worked.



The Mermaids


In dime museums and county fairs one may still find among the
"attractions" a mermaid, dried and stuffed, consisting of the upper
half of a monkey artlessly joined to the lower half or two-thirds of
a codfish, the monkey's head usually adorned with a handful of oakum
or horse-hair. When this kind of thing was first exhibited by the
lamented P. T. Barnum, it is just possible that some bumpkin really
believed it to be a mermaid, but the invention has become so common
of late that it is found in the curio-shops of every town, and as
an eye-catching device is often put into show-cases by some merchant
who deals in anything rather than mermaids. Trite and ridiculous as
this patchwork appears, it symbolizes a belief of full three thousand
years. Men have always been prone to fill with imaginations what they
have never sounded with their senses, and it is to this tendency we
owe poetry and the arts. The sea was a mystery, and is so still. It
was easy to people its twilight depths with forms of grace and beauty
and power, for surely the denizens taken from it were strange enough
to warrant strange beliefs.

And so the old faith in men and women who lived beneath the water
was passed down from generation to generation, and from race to race,
changing but little from age to age. Ulysses stopped the ears of his
crew with wax that they should not hear the sirens luring them toward
the rocks as his ship sailed by, and knowing the magic of their song
had himself bound to the mast, so, hearing the ravishing music, he
might not escape if he would. In a later day we hear of the Lorelei
singing on her rock, striking chords on her golden harp, and, as the
raptured fisherman steered close, with eyes filled by her beauty and
ears by her music, he had a moment's consciousness of a skull leering
at him and harsh laughter clattering in echoes along the shore; then
his boat struck and filled, and the dark flood curtained off the
sky. Wagner has made familiar the legend of the Rhine daughters,
singing impossibly under the river as they swim about the reef
of gold,--the treasure stolen by the gnome, Alberich, who in that
act brought envy, strife, greed, and injustice into the world, and
accomplished the destruction of the gods themselves. The wild tales
of Britain and Brittany, of thefts and revenges by the sea-creatures,
are among the oldest of their myths, and when we cross to our side
of the sea, the ocean people are close in our wake and they follow
us through the fresh waters and far out in the Pacific.

Among the Antilles, as in the South Seas, the tritons blow their
conchs and shake their shaggy heads, while the daughters of the deep
gather, at certain seasons, on the water, or about some favorite
rock, and sing. Always, in Eastern versions of the myth, there is
music, save in the case of Melusina, who became a half fish only
on Saturdays, when her husband was supposed not to be watching,
and this music follows the myth around the world. Among the vague
traditions of certain Alaskan Indians is one of an immigration from
Asia, under lead of "a creature resembling a man, with long, green
hair and beard, whose lower part was a fish; or, rather, each leg a
fish." He charmed them so with his singing that they followed him,
unconsciously, and reached America. We find in Canada the tale of a
dusky Undine, a soulless water sprite, who, through love of a mortal,
became human. Some of the beings of the sea were of more than human
power and authority,--gods, in fact; barbarian Neptunes. Such was
the Pacific god, Rau Raku, who, being entangled in a fishing-net, was
lugged to the surface, sputtering tremendously. Yet he had no grudge
against the fisherman. That trembling unfortunate was too small for
his revenge. He would devastate the whole earth to which he had been
thus unceremoniously dragged, and, bidding his captor take himself
away while he made trouble, he deluged the globe until all upon it
had perished, except the fish, the fisherman, and a few land animals
that the sole human survivor had taken to a lofty island with him.

The mermaid of story was a damsel fair to view, until she had risen
from the waves so as to show her fish-like ending. It was her habit
to sit on sunny beaches, comb her golden hair with a golden comb, and
sing delightfully, though her wilder sisters would perch on juts of
rock on lonely islands and scream in frightening ways when a gale was
coming. When the sea-maidens went ashore they sometimes met sailors
and fishermen, and if they liked these strangers a frank avowal of
love was made; for it is always leap year in the ocean. It was a most
uncomfortable position for a mortal to be placed in, especially one
who had a wife waiting for him at home, because if their addresses
were rejected the mermaids were liable to throw stones, and always
with fatal results; or they would brew mists, and set loose awful
storms; yet, if the man who inspired this affection was not coy, and
yielded to one of these slippery denizens, she dragged him under the
sea forthwith, unless he could persuade her to compromise on a cave or
a lonely rock as a home, for it is reputed that mortals have formally
wedded them and raised amphibious families. On the Isle of Man they
tell of one caught in a net, who was woman to the waist and fish as
to the rest of her. As she sulked in captivity, refusing to eat or
speak,--perhaps they forgot to offer raw fish for her supper,--it
was decided to let her escape; and as she wriggled over the beach she
was heard to tell her people (in Manx?), as they arose to greet her,
that the earth-men did nothing wonderful except to throw away water
in which they had boiled eggs!

The home of the mermaids was at the bottom of the deep. A diver, who
said he had reached it, reported a region of clear water, lighted
from below by great, white stones and pyramids of crystal. These
haunts contained bowers of coral, gardens of bright sea weeds and
mosses, tables and chairs of amber, floors of iridescent shell and
pearls, gems strewn about the jasper grottoes,--diamonds, rubies,
topazes,--and the sea people had combs and ornaments of gold. Columbus
was disappointed in the mermaids that he saw in the Caribbean. They
were not, to his eyes, so handsome as the romancers had alleged,
nor were their voices sweet. The doubters claim that he was asleep
when the mermaids appeared, and that he saw nothing but the sea cow,
or manatee, which is neither tuneful nor pretty.



The Aborigines


In following the southern coast of Cuba, Columbus supposed he
was working toward India. He died ignorant of the fact that he had
discovered a new world, and he gave up the exploration of this island
when almost in sight of open water at its western end. Of the first
inhabitants of Cuba (called by some Macaca, and by others Caboi,
"land of the dead," for the people killed their prisoners), little is
known, for they were exterminated as a distinct race, and their few
relics were disregarded as worthless or destroyed as idolatrous. It
is believed, however, that they had some knowledge of the arts;
they worked gold into ornaments, and copper and stone into tools
and weapons, and they wore helmets of feathers, like those of the
Hawaiian chiefs. Near Bayamo have been found farming tools, painted
pottery, and little statuettes supposed to represent gods. Their
houses were hardly more than shelters, frames of bamboo or light
boughs, though they were prettily environed by walks and flowers,
and their clothing--sometimes of fur, oftener of leaves and coarse
cloth--was of the scantiest. Heavy dresses in a tropic country,
or in a temperate country in tropic weather, are manifestly absurd.

As on the other Antilles, the people of Cuba were brown, broad,
straight-haired, flat-faced, and decorated with slashes and
tattooing. They were singularly mild, honest, and trusting. They were
frightened by the Spanish ships, believing them to be great birds
that had come down from the sky, bringing the white adventurers in
their brave array; but when Columbus had sent a few beads and hawks'
bells to them, they expressed their confidence and delight in a hundred
ways, swam and rowed about his caravel offering fish and fruit, not in
trade, but as gifts, and when a crowd of hungry sailors ashore invited
themselves to a feast that had been prepared for a religious ceremony
the Indians made no objection, because they could prepare one like it
by another night's work. Food, indeed, was free to whoso needed it,
like air and water, and no stranger needed to go hungry. While the
Spaniards did little to invite their confidence, were insolent to
most other people and even to one another, the Indians set an example
of charity in conduct and in faith. The dons were intolerant of all
religions except their own, whereas the Cubans were quick to realize
that the performance of the mass was of some sacred significance,
and they preserved a reverent attitude throughout a ceremony whose
details they did not understand. When missionary work had fairly
begun it is said that some Spaniards drove Indians into the water,
forcibly baptized them, then cut their throats that they might not
repent their acceptance of the true faith. In their own belief there
appeared to be a purgatory and a paradise, but no hell or devil;
and, as beliefs reveal the character of the people who hold them, it
speaks well for the Cubans that the grewsome images invoked by certain
mediæval theologians had never been created in their more generous
imaginations. When a soul left the body it had two journeys before it:
one to a dismal place, where the cruel and unjust awaited; the other
to a fair land, like the best of earth, where all was pleasant and
peaceful; for, in spite of the warlike undertakings made necessary
by irruptions of the fierce Caribs, these people held to peace as
the highest good.

Of these Indians hardly a dozen are remembered by their names, but the
chief Hatuey was revered among them for his courage and his military
skill. He had fled from Hayti to Cuba in a vain hope of escaping his
white enemy, and counselled the natives to throw all their gold into
the sea, that the Spanish might not linger on their coasts. He might
have been the one who ordered gold to be melted and poured down the
throats of his prisoners, that for one and the last time they might
have enough. The Spaniards caught him and burned him to death at
Baracoa. As he stood on the logs in chains, just before the flames
were applied, the friars pressed about him and earnestly advised him
to become a Christian, that he might not be required to roast in hell,
which would be worse than the torture he was about to endure, and which
would last forever. If only he would be baptized he could go direct
to heaven. "The white man's heaven?" he asked. "Yes." "Are there any
Spaniards in that heaven?" "Oh, yes, many." "Then light the fire."

Columbus was the more convinced that he had reached Asia because
the name of one Cuban province, Mangon, he assumed to be Mangi, a
rich district of China. That its people had tails, like monkeys, was
nothing against this theory; that footprints of alligators should be
the tracks of griffins, which had the bodies of lions and the wings
and heads of eagles, was quite in order; but most convincing of all
was the discovery by an archer, who had entered a wood in search of
game, of thirty men with pale faces, armed with clubs and lances,
and habited in white gowns, like friars. The man fled in fear. When
his comrades returned with him to find this white company, not a
human being appeared to them, and, except for the chatter of birds
and the clicking of land-crabs as they scuttled over the stones,
the place was still. The coast Indians were understood to say
that among the mountains dwelt a chief whom they called a saint,
who wore a flowing robe of white and never spoke aloud, ordering
his subjects by signs. This was surely Prester John, the shadowy
king of a shadowy kingdom, of whom much was said and written a few
centuries ago. He was declared by one author to rule a part of India
and was reputed to be a Nestorian priest who had made himself king
of the Naymans. Other travellers placed him in China, Persia, and
Timbuctoo. In a battle with the infidel Tartars Prester John mounted
a number of bronze men on horseback, each figure belching clouds of
smoke from a fire of punk within, and lashed the horses against the
enemy, filling them with such terror, and so veiling in smoke the
dash of his flesh and blood cavalry, that his victory was easy. So,
it was a great satisfaction to Columbus to think that he had reached
the confines of a Christian kingdom.

While working through the thousand little islands off the southern
coast of Cuba, that he called the Queen's Gardens, Columbus found
added reason for believing that this was the Asiatic shore, and he
hoped shortly to reach Cipango, or Japan, where pearls and precious
stones abounded, and where the king abode in a palace covered with
plates of gold more than an inch thick. The attempts of the Mongols to
overrun the Asian islands were defeated, because the Cipangalese were
invulnerable, having placed between the skin and the flesh of their
right arms a little stone that made them safe against swords, arrows,
clubs, and slings. The people of Cuba fell too easy a prey to Spanish
blades--of both sorts--to allow a belief like this to last long.

That Columbus thought he was approaching the earthly paradise, the
mountain-guarded Eden where our first parents lived, when he neared
these lovely shores, inhaled the fragrance of fruits and flowers,
heard the cries of birds and saw the flash of bright waters, is
probable. That paradise he sought. The serpent of oppression and wrong
has left it, and as America comes into her own, that paradise shall be.



The Caribs


Had it not been for the Caribs the Antilleans would have led a placid
existence. Those warlike and predacious Indians would not keep the
peace, nor would they allow other people to do so. Though they had
their capital in Guadaloupe, they extended their military enterprises
in every direction, and Cuba, Porto Rico, Hayti, Jamaica, and the
lesser islands suffered from their assaults. They were trained to
fight from childhood, and attained to great proficiency in arms. Being
active voyagers, they had some knowledge of astronomy. When operating
in the waters of a hostile country it was their custom to mask their
boats with palm leaves, for in this guise they stole upon the enemy the
easier. Like the red men of our plains, they painted their faces, and,
indeed, they retained many of the practices common to our tribes. In
their traditions they came from the North, like other strong races,
their old home being among the Alleghanies, and they conquered their
way from Florida to Brazil. Their tribe, they say, grew up from stones
that their remote ancestors had sowed in the soil. They buried their
dead in a sitting posture that they might be ready to leap up when
the spirit came for them, and they faced the sunrise that they might
see the day of resurrection the quicker.

In their mythology the first men came down from heaven on clouds to
purify the world and make it as clean as the moon; but, while they were
looking about at this untidy planet, the clouds floated back and they
were left in a sorry plight, for they had brought no provisions with
them. Their hunger having sharpened so as to become unbearable, they
scraped up clay and baked it to make it less tough and more eatable,
and were grieved when it came out of the fire as hard as stone. Then
the birds and beasts had pity on them, and led them to the groves and
fields where they could find fruit, nuts, maize, and yams. One tree
was of such size that they chopped it with stone axes for ten months
before it fell, and they ate all of it. Beneath its roots, in a cave,
lived the Water Mother, who, possibly because she was angered by the
destruction of the tree, released a flood that would have covered the
earth had not a rock fallen into the throat of the cavern and stopped
the flow. This rock had life and speech. It warned the new race that
when its founders should grow old they were to expect a deluge. Until
that appeared they should find in the atone their best adviser and
protector, and if they would pray to it, giving a deaf ear to the
wood-devils, it would cure them of illness, gray hair, and age. After a
time came the monkey out of the woods, beguiling and wheedling, while
at every chance, with a monkey's love of mischief, he worked at the
stone, trying to dislodge it from the mouth of the cave. At last he
succeeded, and out poured the flood. An old woman ran to a palm that
touched the sky with its vast leaves, and climbed with feverish haste,
but fright and fatigue brought her to a stop when half-way up, and
she hardened to stone, thus blocking the way to all behind her, who,
when they touched her, became stone likewise. Some scrambled down,
splashed through the rising waters, and reached another palm tree,
which they climbed to its top, and so saved their lives.

As the waters were subsiding, Amalwaka came sailing across the ocean
from the east, ascended the Orinoco, carved the figures found near
the head of that river, without leaving his canoe, smoothed the rugged
hills and invented the tides, so that men might go from place to place
on the current, but, being unable to make the Orinoco flow up stream,
he sailed away again into the arch of the rising sun, guided at night
by the constant star and by the tapir and Serikoai,--which is another
story, told by the Arawaks, to this effect: The bride of Serikoai
was seduced by the tapir god, who had first aroused her curiosity and
interest by his attentions, and had finally won her love by promising
to put off his swinish shape and reveal himself as a finer being than
her husband. If only she would follow him to the edge of the earth,
where the sky comes down, she would see that he was a god. The poor
husband was crippled by the wife, that he might not follow, for she
chopped off his leg as he descended an avocado pear-tree, in which
he had been gathering fruit for her. He nearly bled to death, but a
wandering spirit revived him and called his mother, who healed the
wound with gums and helped to make a wooden leg, on which he stumped
over the earth in search of his runaway wife. It is known that the
aborigines performed trepanning with skill, but this is probably the
earliest appearance in an American legend of a wooden leg. Though
he found no foot-prints, it was easy to trace the couple, because
avocados were springing up from seeds that the woman spat out as she
journeyed on. At the edge of the earth he caught the tapir and killed
him; yet the creature's shadow arose from the body and kept on its
flight with the wife. Straightforth she leaped into the blue vast,
and there she hangs, only we call her the Pleiades. The brute is the
Hyades. He glares and winks with his red eye: Aldebaran. The husband
is Orion, who follows the others through the sky.

The Caribs were a handsome people, and one tradition narrates the
madness that afflicted a governor of Antigua, because of his jealousy
of a native chief. In 1640 this dusky Paris stole the English woman and
her child, and carried them to Dominica. The governor pursued. Arrived
where Roseau now stands, he learned that a captive woman and her child
had been landed there, and had been taken to some stronghold in the
forest. Drops of blood, pricked out by cactus thorns on the march,
formed a trail which he was able to follow, and believing that they
betokened murder, he killed all the Caribs he encountered. His wife
and boy were safe, however, except for their bleeding feet, and he
found them in the otherwise deserted cabin of the chief and took
them back to Antigua. The affair preyed on his mind. He began to
doubt his wife, thinking she had accompanied the savage willingly,
and his jealousy so increased that his friends had to secrete her,
to save her from his wrath. He probably recovered his senses in time.

The Spaniards chased the Caribs out of several of the islands. That
of Grenada terminates on the north in a tall cliff called Le Morne
des Sauteurs, over which the white men compelled the flying Indians
to leap to their death. Not one Carib was left alive on this island.



Secret Enemies in the Hills


The brutalities of the Spaniards who first occupied the West Indies
would seem incredible if so many of them had not continued to our
own day. It is estimated that half of the natives of Porto Rico were
killed, and within sixty or seventy years after the seizure of Cuba
its populace of three hundred thousand had been destroyed or removed
by war, murder, slavery, hunting with blood-hounds, imported vices
and diseases, flight and forced emigration. These natives are said to
have been a peaceful and happy race, practised in the simpler arts,
observing the moralities better than their oppressors, holding a faith
in one god--a god of goodness, not of hate--and in the immortality of
the soul, and abstaining from useless forms and ceremonies. They held
that when the soul had left the body it went into the woods and hills
or abode in caves, and took its food and drink as in the flesh. When a
man calls out in a solitary place among the mountains and an answering
voice comes back, it is not an echo, but a wandering soul that speaks.

Even the relics of these folk--the Cubans or Siboneyes--have
vanished, save in the instance of the temple remains near Cobre, and
an occasional caney or mound of the dead, a truncated cone of earth
and broken stones. Some fossil skeletons found in caves, and of an
alleged age of fifty thousand years, denote an ancient race of large,
strong people. There are other skeletons of Siboneyes, Chinese, and
negroes in the caves,--victims of herding, slavery, fever, cruelty,
and suicide. There is little doubt that of the aboriginal stock not
a man remains. Yet there are stories of strange people who were
seen by hunters and explorers among the mountains, or who peered
out of the jungle at the villagers and planters and were gone again,
without track or sound,--people with swarthy faces, sinewy forms, long
black hair, decorations of coral shells and feathers, and bracelets,
armlets, and anklets of gold. Almost from the first, the conduct of
the Spaniard toward his enemies and dependents was such as to earn
for him a permanent hate; so, when his cruelty had been practised, and
the futility of opposing arms against his heavy weapons and his coat
of steel had been proved, it was natural that those who escaped him
should keep as far from reach as possible, and it is idle to suppose
that he traversed the seven hundred and thirty miles of Cuba's length,
whipping every forest and climbing every mountain, for no more than
the pleasure of killing. Negro slavery was introduced into the New
World before its existence had been known in Spain for a century, and
although the black men have usually been tractable, the severities of
their masters led to many revolts and to the organization of bands for
retaliation. These bands often degenerated, and during this century
the Spanish Antilles have been troubled by companies of beggars and
outlaws, mostly blacks and half-breeds, who have robbed and murdered
in the dark, run off stock from the farms, burned houses and shops,
and because of their secret and cowardly methods have been feared as
much as the Spaniards were hated.

The Nañigos originally formed a secret order of negroes, banded for
protection against unkind slave-owners and overseers, but feeling
their power, and being swayed by passion and superstition, they
constituted, after a time, a body correspondent to the voodoos,
or wizards, of our Gulf States. With hideous incantations, with mad
dances, with obscene songs, with the slaughter of animals, with oaths
on an altar and crucifix, they invoked illness, ruin, and death on
their enemies. In time they gained accessions to their fraternity
from Spanish residents,--thieves, vagrants, deserters from the army,
the half-witted and wrong-hearted outcasts from the towns,--and the
fantastic ceremonies of the jungle came to mean something more to the
purpose of mischief, for the newer Nañigos had more skill and courage
than the slaves, and were familiar with more sins. To enter this
order it was required of the candidate that he steal a cock, kill it,
and drink the warm blood. A darker tale is that they were required to
drink human blood. In Havana this part of the initiation was performed
on the Campo Marti. The man's right nostril was pierced, and a skull
and crossbones branded on his chest. It was then expected of him
that within fifteen days he would kill an official or a policeman,
a white, black, or yellow marble, drawn by chance from a globe,
deciding whether he was to slay a white man, negro, or mulatto. When
he had, by this crime, attained to full membership, a little shield
was given to him which he might wear beneath his coat, and which was
decorated with the device of a skull and bones. For every murder he
committed a red stitch was put in at the edge of the skull. Once
a month, in the dark of the moon, the Nañigos paraded the streets
of the towns, their naked forms painted fantastically, their faces
ghastly with flour, tramping and leaping to the thud of drums and
clash of cymbals, yelling defiance to the military, brandishing knives
and firing pistols. It was a kind of thing that in an American city
could have happened for one consecutive time, but no more. In Havana
the Spaniards were terrorized. The police refused to make arrests,
lest they should fall victims to the outlaws. One judge who refused
to liberate an assassin was slain in his own house by his servant.

As a partial revenge on the Cubans for wishing liberty the Spanish
captains-general have at times pardoned some hundreds of these rascals
and set them free to prey on the people; while, in retaliation, the
insurgents adopted some of the methods of the Nañigos and carried on
a guerilla warfare that neither troops nor trochas could abate. Many
are these more or less bold spirits of the hills who are celebrated in
inland stories: aborigines, Frenchmen, Creoles, mulattoes, who have
gathered bands of reckless fellows about them from time to time and
raided the Spaniard, flouting him in his strongholds, pillaging from
his farms, striking him, hip and thigh, and making off to the woods
before he knew how or by whom he had been struck. Sometimes even the
name of the guerilla has been forgotten, but the tradition remains of a
predecessor of Lopez, Gomez, and Garcia, who aided the English before
Havana in 1762. In that year Lord Albemarle took the town with two
hundred ships and fourteen thousand soldiers, beating a Spanish army
of almost double that size, though it was covered by heavy walls and
well provided with artillery. It took two months to reduce the city.

During one of the land operations the red-coats lost themselves in a
dense wood, and were in considerable peril from bodies of Spaniards
who were almost within speaking distance. To advance or to retreat
was an equal risk. As the column was halted, pending a debate and a
reconnoissance, there was a rustle in a clump of bushes beside which
the colonel was standing; then, as every sword was drawn and a row
of muskets held ready, a tall man bounded into the space, laid his
finger on his lip to enforce silence, and, beckoning all to follow,
crept on stealthily through the chaparral. He was a man advanced in
years, a long white beard flowed over his chest, yet he was lithe and
quick, and his look and manner were those of one who lives in the
open and in frequent danger. He spoke not a word, but after a time
drew himself erect and pointed before him. He had led the English
to the rear of one of the Spanish batteries. The colonel, who had at
first regarded him with doubt, as a lunatic or a false guide, ordered
his men to attack, and after a short fight he returned to his lines
with prisoners and trophies of victory. He sought in all directions
for the old man, to thank him, but the jungle had swallowed him,
and he was never seen again.



Sacred Shrines


Cuba has many shrines containing evidences of divine blessing,
and some of these are of wide renown. When the image of our Lady
of Charity was found in Nipe Bay it was delivered to the priests of
Cobre, the centre of the copper-mining industry, and they erected a
church above it. The statue is fifteen inches high, and is seemingly
carved from gold. A splendid shrine has been made as a setting, and
for years it has been the object of pilgrimages during the Lady's
festival in September. Those who ask for special favors, such as
the cure of lameness and blindness, ascend the long flight of steps
before the statue on their knees. The figure was found in 1627 by
two Indians and a Creole boy who were crossing the bay at dawn in
a search for salt. It appeared to them as a white body rising from
the water, but as they approached it revealed itself as the image
of the Virgin, the holy child on her left arm, a golden cross in
her right hand. The board on which it stood was inscribed, "I am the
Virgin of Charity." After it had been shown in the fold at Verajagua
and venerated by the multitude it was placed in a chapel, a number
of priests leading the march with a pomp and joy of banners, while
bells and guns signalized its progress. The Virgin was dissatisfied,
however, with the lack of splendor in her shrine and with the site
on which the chapel had been placed. She told her displeasure to a
girl named Apolonia, while she burned pale lights on a hill above
the mines, to mark the place on which she wished her church to be
erected. Her request was heeded so soon as the needed funds could be
collected. It was generally believed that the statue was given by
Ojeda to a native chief who, afraid of the enmity of his people as
a result of accepting a gift from a treacherous and hated race, or,
more reasonably, afraid that the Spaniards would kill him for the
sake of the gold that adorned it, set it afloat in the bay. A thief
despoiled it of thirty thousand dollars' worth of jewels after the
American occupation.

This ambulatory practice of sacred images is not uncommon, and a
similar instance is recorded in Costa Rica, where in 1643 the state
had been thrown into a panic by the devil, who lives in the volcano
of Turrialba, when he is at home, and who generally was at home in
those days, for he seized upon every wayfarer who ventured on the
peak. General joy was therefore felt at the discovery of a Madonna
by a peasant woman at Cartago. She carried it to her hut, but it was
dissatisfied and ran away--twice--three times. The village priest
then took it and put it under lock and key in his house. Again it
ran away. It was carried to church in procession, and it ran away
again. Then the priest laid a heavy assessment on his flock for silk
and gold and emeralds with which to deck the image, and this concession
having been made to a feminine fondness for appearance, the statue has
remained patiently on its pedestal ever since. One of the treasures
of the Church of Mercy, Havana, is a painting of the cross, with a
woman seated on one arm of it, holding a child. Spanish soldiers and
proud-looking Indians are gathered about the emblem. The origin of the
picture is involved in doubt, but it was installed in recognition of an
appearance vouchsafed by the Virgin to Columbus at Cerro de la Vega,
in presence of the Indians. The natives, alarmed at this vision in
the air, and associating it--justly, as it fell out--with calamity,
discharged their arrows at it, and were still more frightened when
their darts passed through the apparition without causing a flow of
blood. This onslaught put the Spaniards into an instant rage, and,
encouraged by the Virgin's smiles, they fell upon the heathen with
sword and musketoon and stamped them out of existence.

Some of these supernatural appearances had so occult a purpose that it
has never been fathomed. At Daiquiri, for example, where the American
troops landed in the late war, a native reported to the wondering
community that while walking through the wood he met a tall, shaggy
stranger, who looked as though he might have been one of the fisherman
disciples, and who pointed to the earth with an imperious gesture. So
soon as the Cuban had looked down the tall man melted into air. On
the ground was the print of the face of Christ. A stone was placed
on the spot to mark the miracle.

When the fiery Ojeda set out on his several voyages of discovery and
adventure,--and no man ever had more excitement and tribulation,--he
carried in his knapsack a small painting of the Virgin, the work
of a Fleming of some artistic consequence. During his halts in
the jungle it was his custom to affix this picture to a tree, say
his prayers before it, receive spiritual assurance of protection,
then, grasping sword and buckler, to undertake the slaughter of the
natives with fresh alacrity and cheer. So confident was he in his
heavenly guard that he exposed himself recklessly in fight, and the
Indians were fain to believe him deathless, until one of their arrows
pierced his leg. If this injured his confidence it did not stint
his courage. He ordered his surgeon to burn the leg with hot irons,
threatening to hang him if he refused, for he fancied that the arrow
was poisoned. When wrecked on the south coast of Cuba with seventy
varlets, who had no concern for exploration and much for booty,
he struck out bravely for the east end of the island, floundering
through marshes and breaking his way through tangles of vegetation,
the company living for several days on a few pounds of raw roots,
moldy cassava, and cheese, and at last breaking down in despair. In
thirty days they had crossed ninety miles of morass, and were too
feeble to go farther. Ojeda set up his picture for the last time and
besought the thirty-five cut-throats who survived to pray to it also,
assuring the Virgin that if she would only guide them through their
peril this time he would make a chapel for her in the first village
he might reach.

In answer to this prayer a path was disclosed that led them to dry
ground, and they soon arrived at the hamlet of Cuebas, where the
natives received them with every kindness, and went to the marsh
to rescue such of the party as had been abandoned but were still
alive. These rascals afterward reached Jamaica, where some were hanged
for their various murders and sea-robberies, while others re-enlisted
in various freebooting enterprises. Ojeda kept his promise. He
explained to the chief at Cuebas the principal points in the Christian
faith, built a little oratory in the village, and placed the picture
above the altar, with orders that the Indians should always treat it
with reverence. Though they did not comprehend the relation of the
painting to the white man's religion, they saw from the demeanor of
Ojeda and his friends that it was a thing of value and might avert
hoodos. Therefore it was attired and cared for with as much assiduity
as if it had been consigned to a Spanish cathedral, and although
the Indians had not been Christianized, they decorated the oratory,
overhung its walls with sacrifices, while at stated intervals they sang
and danced before it. When Father Las Casas tried to get this picture
away from them, afterward, it was hidden in the forest until he had
passed on. Ojeda reformed, killed several of his associates who had
attempted his life, turned monk, and was buried under the door-stone
of his monastery, that the populace might trample on his pride.



Tobacco


Tobacco suggests Cuba, or Cuba more than suggests tobacco. Havana
cigars are the synonym for excellence, and it was on this island that
the native American was first seen with a cigar in his mouth. It
was not much like the cigars of our day, for it consisted of loose
leaves folded in a corn-husk, as a cigarette is wrapped in paper. It
amazed the Spaniards as much to see these dusky citizens eating fire
and breathing smoke as it astonished the Filipinos when the Spaniards,
having learned the trick, and having landed on their islands, proceeded
to swallow flame and utter smoke in the same fashion,--a proceeding
which convinced the people of the Philippines that the strangers were
gods. The white adventurers never found the palace of Cubanacan, whose
gates were gold and whose robes were stiff with gems, but they found
the soothing and mischievous plant that was eventually to create more
wealth for them than the spoil of half a dozen such palaces. The Cuban
word for this plant was cohiba. The word tobago, which we have turned
into tobacco, was applied to a curious pipe used by the Antilleans,
which had a double or Y-shaped stem for inserting into the nostrils,
the single stem being held over a heap of burning leaf. The island
of Tobago was so named because its explorers thought its outline to
resemble that of the pipe.

In one form or another the use of the weed was prevalent throughout
the Americas. Montezuma had his pipe after dinner, and rinsed his
mouth with perfume. For medicinal purposes snuff was taken through
a tube of bamboo, and tobacco leaves were chewed. The practice of
chewing also obtained to a slight extent among the natives as a
stay against hunger, and they are said to have indulged it in long
and exhaustive marches against an enemy. They would chew in battle,
because in a fight at close range they tried to squirt the juice
into the eyes of their foemen and blind them. The herb was taken
internally as a tea for medicinal reasons, was used as a plaster,
and was valued as a charm. Francisco Fernandez took it to Europe;
Drake and Raleigh introduced it in England, and though its use was
regarded as a sin, to be checked not merely by royal "counterblasts"
and by edicts like that of William the Testy, but by laws prescribing
torture, exile, whipping, and even death, it was not long in reaching
the uttermost parts of the earth.

Men of all races and conditions incline to the tradition of the
Susquehannas, that the plant was the gift of a benevolent spirit. In
their account this manitou had descended to eat meat, which they had
offered to her in a time of famine. As she was about to go back to
the skies she thanked them for their kindness, and bade them return
to the spot in thirteen months. They did so, and found maize growing
where her right hand had rested, beans at her left, and tobacco where
she had been seated.

The Indians of Guiana say that tobacco was given by a sea-goddess to a
man who was begging the gods to do something for him,--he didn't know
exactly what; he would merely like to have somebody do something for
him on general principles. As a divine gift, therefore, it was used
in certain of the rites of the Indians, and the man who wished to go
into a trance and see visions would starve for a couple of days, then
drink tobacco water. He generally saw the visions,--if he lived. In
some islands the priests inhaled the smoke of a burning powder and
thereupon fell into a stupor or a frenzy in which they talked with
the dead. Was this the smoke of tobacco, plus a little abandon, a
little falsehood, a little enthusiasm? Its enemies in King James's
time would have said that the smokers deserved not merely to talk
with the dead, but to join them.



The Two Skeletons of Columbus


Following the return of the vanquished army of Spain to its home
country was another solemn voyage, undertaken for the transfer of the
bones of Christopher Columbus from the world he had discovered to the
land that grudgingly, cautiously permitted him to discover it. Spain
claimed all the benefits that arose from his knowledge, his bravery,
his skill, his energy, and his enthusiasm, and rewarded his years
of service with dismissal from office and confinement in chains as
a prisoner, but now it repented, and wished to house his unwitting
relics in state. Once before these bones had crossed the sea. After
the death of the great navigator, in Valladolid, Spain, in 1506,
his body remained in that city for seven years. Then it was taken
to Seville and placed in Las Cuevas monastery with that of his son,
Diego. In 1536 both bodies were exhumed and sent to Santo Domingo,
or Hispaniola, an island that Columbus appeared to hold in a warmer
liking than either of the equally picturesque, fertile, and friendly
islands of Cuba, Porto Rico, or Jamaica. In the quaint old cathedral
of Santo Domingo, built in 1514, the bodies of the great admiral,
his son, and also his grandson, Louis, first Duke of Veragua, rested
for more than a century without disturbance.

On the appearance of the English fleet, however, in 1655, the
archbishop was so fearful of a raid on the church and the theft of
the bodies that he ordered them to be hidden in the earth. During
the years in which they remained so covered the exact burial-place of
the admiral may have been forgotten, or, it may be, as several people
allege, that the San Dominicans tricked the Spaniards when, in 1795,
the latter gave their island to France and carried with them to Havana
the supposed skeleton of Columbus. Bones of somebody they certainly
did take, but it is no uncommon belief in the Antilles that the monks
of Santo Domingo had hidden the precious ones and sent to the monks
of Havana the bones of the son, Diego, albeit a monument was erected
to the memory and virtues of the great Columbus in Havana cathedral.

In 1878 the old church in Santo Domingo was undergoing repair when
the workmen came upon a leaden box containing the undoubted remains
of the first Duke of Veragua. Breaking through the wall of the vault
they found themselves in a larger one, and here was a box two feet
long, enclosing a skull, bones, dust, jewelry, and a silver plate
bearing the words "C. Colon," and on the end of the box, according to
some witnesses, the letters "C. C. A.," meaning Christopher Columbus,
Admiral (the English initials being the same as for the name and title
in Spanish). A more circumstantial account places the time of this
rediscovery in 1867, and says that a musket-ball was the only object
found in the little coffin, while the silver plate on the lid was thus
inscribed, "Una pt. de los restos del Primar Alm. to Du Christobal
Colon." The Santo Dominicans claim their right to the relics on the
ground that in his life the Spanish misused the discoverer, though
his grief was not deep enough to justify the ancient rumor of his
electing to be buried with the chains in which he was carried back to
Spain. Meantime Seville is to build a monument, and Santo Domingo is
putting up another, each city claiming to have his only real skeleton.



Obeah Witches


From the earliest days of Spanish occupancy the Antilles have been the
haunt of strange creatures. Mermen have sung in their waters, witches
and wizards have perplexed their villages, spirits and fiends have
dwelt among their woods. Everybody fears the jumbie, or evil spirit
that walks the night; and the duppy, the rolling calf, the ghost of
the murdered one; all pray that they may never meet the diablesse,
the beautiful negress with glittering eyes, who passes silently through
fields where people are at work, and smiling on any one of them compels
him to follow her,--where? He never returns. Anansi (grotesquely
disguised sometimes as Aunt Nancy) is a hairy old man with claws,
who outwits the lesser creatures, as Br'er Rabbit does. To him and
his familiars are attributed all manner of queer tales, one of which,
from Jamaica, may be quoted as an illustration:

Sarah Winyan, an orphan of ten, lived with her aunt, while her two
brothers kept house by themselves a mile or two away. This aunt was
an Obeah witch, the duppy, or devil ghost, that was her familiar,
appearing as a great black dog that she called Tiger. Sarah stood
between this old woman and a little property, and after finding that
the child endured her abuse with more or less equanimity and was
not likely to die, she told her that she was too poor to support
her any longer, and she must go. Sarah sat on a stone before the
house, wondering how she could make a living, and all the time sang
mournfully. A racket as of some heavy creature plunging about in the
bushes aroused her with a start and she scrambled into a tree. It was
Tiger who had been making the disturbance. He told her to descend at
once. If she would go with him peacefully, and would be his servant,
all would be well, but if she refused he would gnaw the tree down and
tear her into a thousand pieces. He showed his double row of teeth,
like daggers, whereupon Sarah immediately descended. As she walked
beside him to his lair she sang low, in the hope of being heard
and rescued. It was well that she did so, for her brothers, who were
hunting in the wood, recognized her voice and softly followed. Peering
in at the cave where Tiger made his home, they saw him sleeping
soundly with his head in Sarah's lap. Cautiously, slowly, she drew
away, leaving a block of wood for his head to rest upon, and crept
out of the cavern. Then the boys entered, and with their guns blew
the head of the beast into bits, cut his body into four parts, buried
them at the north, south, east and west edges of the wood; then killed
the wicked aunt. And since that day dogs have been subject to men.

The evil eye is not uncommon in the Antilles. It blights the lives of
children, and it is one of the worst of fates to be "overlooked" by an
Obeah man possessing it. Higes, or witches, too, are seen, who take off
their skins, and in that state of extra-nudity go about looking for
children, whose blood they suck, like vampires. Lockjaw is caused by
this loss of blood. There is a three-footed horse, also, that gallops
about the country roads when it has come freshly out of hell and is
looking for victims it can eat. If it halts before a house, that stop
means death to somebody within, and the peculiar sound made by its
three hoofs tells what has passed. It is not well to look, because
the creature has an eye in the centre of its forehead that flashes
fire. One who meets it is so fascinated by this blazing eye that he
cannot look away. He stares and stares; presently paralysis creeps over
him, and in a little while he falls dead. Sometimes a creature is seen
riding on this horse,--a man with a blue face, like that of a corpse,
and with that face turned toward the tail. Related, in tradition,
to the horse was the king-snake of Carib myth, a frightful creature
that wore a brilliant stone in its head, which it usually concealed
with a lid, like that of the eye, but which it would uncover when it
went to a river to drink, or played about the hills. Whoever looked
on this dazzling stone would lose his sight on the instant.

The Obeah man has an hereditary power that comes to him in advanced
age, and that, when at its strongest, enables him to send an evil
spirit into any object he pleases. Not only do the people believe in
him, but he has the fullest faith in himself. When he boils a witch
broth of scorpions' blood, toads' heads, snake bellies, spider poison,
and certain herbs picked by moonlight (an actual mixture used by
Obeah witches),--boils it over a fire of dead men's bones, between
midnight and dawn,--he has no more doubt of its power to harm than
the physician doubts the power of his quinine and antipyrin for good.

A Cuban planter who suspected one of his older slaves of being an Obeah
man determined to punish him if he were found guilty, and to suppress
the diabolism attending the midnight meetings. Watching his chance,
he followed his slaves into the wood, peeped through the crevices of
the deserted hut which they had entered to perform their fantastic
rites, saw their mad dance, when, stripped and decorated with beads,
shells, and feathers, they leaped about with torches in their hands;
then saw his suspected slave enter through a back door, his black skin
painted to represent a skeleton. The old man held up a fat toad, which,
he said, was his familiar, and the company began to worship it with
grotesque and obscene ceremonies. Though he felt a thrill of disgust
and even a dim sense of fear at the spectacle, the planter broke in at
the door and confronted the Obeah man. Had he ordered the old fellow
to do any given task about his house or grounds in the daytime, that
order would have been obeyed. What was the planter's astonishment,
therefore, when the slave calmly disregarded his command to return
to quarters, and bade his master leave the place at once and cease
to disturb the meeting, or prepare for a great misfortune. Enraged,
and fearing lest this defiance might encourage the other slaves
to mutiny, the master shot the old man dead. A few days later the
planter's wife died while seated at the table. A week after his
daughter died, a seeming victim of poison. All the latent superstition
in his nature having been aroused, he sought out another Obeah man,
to beg that he would intercede with the powers of darkness, but the
wizard was stern. He told him that the slave he had killed was the
most powerful master of spirits in the country, and that nothing
could stay the revenges of fate. When the planter reached his home
he found a letter there announcing the death of his only son in Paris.



The Matanzas Obeah Woman


On a hillock near Matanzas, with a ragged wood behind it, stood for
many years an unkempt cottage. In our land we should hardly dignify it
by such a name. We would call it, rather, a hovel. Some rotting timbers
of it may still be left, for the black people who live thereabout
keep away, especially at night, believing that the hillock is a resort
of spirits. Yet not many of them remember the incident that put this
unpleasant fame upon it, for--that was back in the slavery days. The
brutal O'Donnell was governor-general then. He found Cuba in its usual
state of sullen tranquillity, and no chance seemed to offer by which he
could make a name for himself, so he magnified every village wrangle
into an insurrection. It looked well in his reports when he set forth
the skill and ease with which he had suppressed the uprisings, and,
as he did not scruple to take life in punishment for slight offences,
nor to retaliate on a community for the misconduct of a single member
of it, he almost created the revolution that he described to his home
government. The merest murmur, the merest shadow was enough to take
him to the scene of an alleged outbreak, and he would cause slaves
to be whipped until they were ready to confess anything.

A black boy in Matanzas, arrested on suspicion of inciting
to rebellion, was condemned to seven hundred blows with the
lash. At the end of the flogging, being still alive, he was shot, at
O'Donnell's order. He would confess nothing, because he had nothing to
confess. This boy had been brought up in a well-to-do Spanish family,
and was the play-mate, the friend, of the son of that family, rather
than his slave. The white boy begged for the life of his associate,
the family implored mercy, and asked for at least a trial, but the
governor-general would not listen to them, and after the shooting
the white boy became insane with shock and grief. Thus much of the
legend is declared to be fact.

It was the mother of the black boy who lived in this cabin outside of
the town. She had also been a slave until the Spanish family, giving
up its plantation, moved into the city, sold the younger and stronger
of their human properties, and set free the elderly and rheumatic,
taking with them only a couple of servants and the boy, who went with
his mother's consent, for she knew he would be cared for, and she
could see him often, the relation between slave and owner, being more
commonly affectionate than otherwise. At its best, slavery is morally
benumbing to the enslaved, destructive of the finer feelings, and
when the old woman learned of her son's death,--and such a death--she
did not go mad, as his playfellow had done. She lamented loudly, she
said many prayers, she accepted condolences with seeming gratitude,
but the tears had ceased to flow ere many weeks, and she was seen to
smile when her old mistress, whose affliction was indeed the heavier,
had called on her in her cabin, no doubt feeling as much in need of
her servant's sympathy as the servant felt of the creature comforts
she took to her.

Yet deep in Maumee Niña's nature a change had taken place. She did not
know it herself for many months. Her loss had not affected her conduct
or appearance greatly, yet her heart had hardened under it and she
began to look upon the world with a different eye. She cared less for
her friends, and went to church less often,--a suspicious circumstance,
for when a negro failed to go to mass, and kept away from confession,
it was surely because he had something mischievous to confess. The
rumor got about that Maumee Niña had become an Obeah woman,--a voodoo
worker, a witch. It is not unlikely that the accusation inspired her
to live down to it. Not only were witches held in respect and fear,
but she might be able, through evil arts, to plague the race that
had worked her husband to death in the mines, and now had killed her
only son. She kept still more at home, brooding, planning, yielding
farther and farther to the evil suggestions that her repute as a
voodoo priestess offered to her, yet keeping one place in her heart
even warmer than before,--the place filled by her daughter, Juanita.

This girl of fifteen or sixteen was not black, like her mother. She
was a handsome mulatto. In a country where relations are so easily
established without marriage, and where marriage is so difficult and
has so little force, the fatherhood of many children is in doubt. If
Juanita knew her father's name she was not known to him. It mattered
little. The old woman intended to bring her up as a lady,--that is,
to qualify her for a place as waiting-maid in the house of some
good family; so she made many sacrifices on her account, clothing
her vividly, requiring less work of her than she should have done,
and even, it was said, paying money to have reading taught to her,
and that was an accomplishment, indeed.

Considering the pains and self-denials that the rearing of this child
incurred, it was a trifle inconsistent that Maumee Niña should have
opposed the friendly advances of gallants from the town. She was not
of a class that is wont to consider the etiquette of such attentions,
nor would she have refused to give her daughter in marriage to any
Cuban. It was that her feeling toward the Spaniards was deepening
into hate, and it rejoiced her to learn that a revolution was really
intended. By her native shrewdness she was able to do something for her
people's cause. Whenever a young negro went to her to have his fortune
told,--and from this art she began to realize a steady income,--she
managed to hint at his future greatness as a military leader, his
gains in the loot of Spanish camps, his prowess in bush-fighting when
hostilities should really have begun.

In this way she really incited a number of the ambitious, the
quarrelsome, and the greedy to enlist in the schemes for Cuba's
liberation. Nañigo meetings were held in and near her house; there
were wild dances and uncanny ceremonies, sacrificing of animals in
the moonlight, baptisms of blood, weird chants and responses, and
crime increased in the town. All this being reported to the military
the guard lines were extended and a squadron was posted at a house
not over a mile from Maumee Niña's, with Lieutenant Fernandez in
command. Fernandez was a dashing fellow, with swarthy countenance,
moustachios that bristled upward, close-trimmed hair and beard, a
laughing, pleasure-loving eye, and he wore a trig uniform that set
off his compact shape to advantage. Old Niña heard, though it was not
true, probably, that he had carried out the order of O'Donnell for the
shooting of her boy. Naturally he was the last man she could wish to
see, and she made no secret of her dislike when, on returning to her
home from a visit to Matanzas, she found this young officer seated
on a chair before her door, twirling his moustache and gayly chatting
with her daughter. She instantly ordered the girl to go indoors, and
bade the lieutenant pack off about his business. Being an easy-going
fellow, with no dislike for the people among whom the fortunes of his
calling had cast him, and with a strong fondness for pretty maids,
the young man deprecated the anger of the woman, but finding, after
some persiflage, that it was of small use to try to make friends with
her, he marched away toward his quarters, trolling a lively air and
drumming with his fingers on his sword-hilt. On the next evening he
was at Maumee Niña's again, and before the very nose of that indignant
dame chaffed her daughter, whom he also chucked under the chin; and he
gazed long and searchingly at a couple of low-browed, shifty-looking
blacks who were talking with the old woman when he entered.

"Who are these fellows?" he demanded.

"What right have you, señor lieutenant, to question me about my guests,
in my own house?" replied Niña. "It is enough that they were invited,
and you were not."

The lieutenant glanced sharply at Juanita. She looked at the shabby
fellows for an instant, smiled contemptuously, and gave her head a
saucy fling. The officer's good-nature was restored in a moment. "Give
me a calabash of water from that spring of yours, your grace, and
I'll take myself off," said he. "But, mind, there are to be no more
dances here,--no more voodoo practice."

Old Niña left the room grumbling to herself, while Fernandez talked
with Juanita, quite disregarding the sour and silent pair of black
men. As he glanced through a crack in the timbers of the house he saw
the old woman raise a gourd of water, wave her hand above it three
times, mutter, and shake her head. Then she drew from her pocket a tiny
object and dropped it in the water, stirring it around and around,
as if to dissolve it. There was a quiet smile on the lieutenant's
face as he received the calabash from the old woman's hand.

"In the old days, señora," he said, "it was the way to sweeten the
drink of a cavalier by getting the fairest lady of the house to sip
from it before he drank. Señora Juanita, you will take a little from
this shell, and I will then drink to your eyes."

Juanita had taken the calabash and had lifted it to her mouth, when
Niña sprang forward and struck it to the floor. The lieutenant looked
steadily into the face of the old woman. Her eyes, at first expressing
fear, then anger, dropped under his gaze. "I thought so," he said,
calmly, and left the house without a backward look or another word.

Late that night a subaltern, who had called on Fernandez to carry
a report to headquarters, set off alone in the direction of the
city. When half a mile on his way a man suddenly confronted him
and asked him for a light. He promptly offered his cigar. Puffing
fiercely the stranger created a glow, and in the shadow behind it he
eagerly scanned the face of the soldier. He then returned the stump,
saying, "Pass on, sir. You are not he I seek. Your cigar has saved
your life." There was a click, as of a knife thrust into its sheath,
and the stranger was gone.

Fernandez heard of this and drew an inference, but it did not deter
him from another visit to the Obeah woman's house next evening. The
old woman was away. Juanita was there alone. Truly, the girl was fair,
her eye was merry, she had white teeth and a tempting lip; moreover,
she appeared by no means indifferent to the young officer. In ten
minutes they were talking pleasantly, confidently, and Fernandez held
the maiden's hand.

The hours went by without any one there to take account of them. It
was a fair and quiet night, except for the queer and persistent
call of some insects that seemed always to be drawing nearer to the
house. Faint now came the sound of the clock in Matanzas striking
twelve. As if it were a signal to the dead, shadows appeared about
the house of the Obeah woman, creeping, nodding, motioning, moving
toward the door. One stood close beside it and struck it twice, loudly,
with a metal implement that rang sharply; then it waited. Steps were
heard inside,--the steps of a man in military boots: Fernandez. There
was a swish of steel, too, like a sword whipped out of its scabbard,
but almost at the instant when this was heard the door was opened. A
blow, a faint cry, a fall, a hurry of steps in the grass; then a
light. Fernandez held it. A long, agonized scream quavered through
the darkness, and Maumee Niña, with blood on her hands, fell prone
on the body of her daughter, her Juanita, lying there on the earth
with a knife in her heart.



How Havana Got its Market


Among the Spanish governors of Cuba, some of whom managed by strict
economy to save a million dollars out of a salary of forty thousand
dollars,--men of Weyler's stamp,--it is pleasant to know of one or
two who really had the good of the island at heart. Such was the
honest Blanco, and such was Tacon, to whom Havana owes much of its
beauty and architectural character. He did what he could to abolish
brigandage, which under preceding administrations had become common. He
organized a force of night watchmen; he dealt with offenders according
to their deserts, and if at times he was too severe it was because he
believed that a lesson in the impartiality of justice was needed by
certain favored classes. He had a Latin's love of the sensational
and spectacular, though in conduct, rather than in appearance,
and in these days some of his acts would be set down to a love of
self-advertising. As they had their effect, those who profited by
increased safety could afford to be incurious of reasons. He startled
the populace on the very day he landed. Cuba had been overrun with
bandits, some masquerading as insurgents, while others prowled through
the towns cutting throats in the shadow of the church. Cries of "Stop
thief!" and "Murder!" were common at midday. More than one hundred
people had been stabbed to death before the Chapel of Our Lord of the
Good Death. Police and soldiery were terrorized, and no man cheerfully
went through the side streets after dark. Startling depravity was
instanced. Jose Ibarra, a mulatto, had killed seventeen people before
he was hanged at the age of seventeen. It was supposed that Tacon
would arrive with a flourish of trumpets and would try to impress
the public. The Spanish army was represented at the landing-place by
generals and colonels bedizened with bullion and buttons; there were
troops with silken flags and glittering sabres and bayonets; there was
a copious exhibit of bunting; society was there in carriages, with
liveried footmen and outriders; foreign diplomats were in uniform,
as if to meet royalty, and the clergy had a place of honor. The boat
touched the pier. A small man in civilian dress walked smartly to the
land. He had a riding-whip in his hand,--symbol of his rule: for this
was Tacon, and within a month he was to whip crime into its dens and
make the capital of Cuba safe. His first order carried consternation
to the advocates of fuss and feathers. It was to dismiss the parade,
remove the decorations, send the police to their posts, and declare
Havana in a state of siege. This was startling, but it gratified
and assured those who had long begged for an honest and watchful
government, and had continued not to get it. Crime recognized and
feared this master. "In a little while," says a Cuban, "you could
have gone about the streets at any hour of the night with diamonds
in your open hands and nobody would have touched you, not even the
Spanish Robert Macaire or Robin Hood, who is remembered bitterly in
Andalusia,--Diego Corrientes." Merchants going to and from the bank
with money had formerly been compelled to hire soldiers as guards,
and when they complained of violence the magistrates had said, "Go to
bed at seven, as we do, and you'll have no trouble." Thieves bought
their liberty from jailers. Tacon arrested the jailers in that case.

It does not take long to erect a reputation when it has a basis of
desert. An odd modern instance is told in the case of an American
newspaper reporter, John C. Klein, who, after ten years of absence,
was canonized by the Samoans, among whom he had lived for some years,
as a hero in battle, a slayer of Germans, and a wizard who closed
his own wounds by magic. The gods approved him, and the people in
their trouble prayed for the return of Talaini o le Meleke (Klein,
the American) to rescue them. And with Tacon it took hardly longer to
become a sort of national hero. The qualities he showed in reforming,
building, extending, and protecting Havana were so unusual that the
people willingly credited others to him he may not have possessed. He
has become legendary already.

Tacon, after gathering in two thousand of the riff-raff and putting
them at work on roads, piers, and prisons, applied himself with
special energy to the suppression of Marti, the most daring, yet the
slyest and most cautious of all the robbers in the country. He and
his band thought no more of splitting the weasand of a soldier than
tossing off a glass of brandy, and the people were more than half
his friends, because he joined smuggling to his other industries,
and was therefore able to provide them with many necessities, such
as wine and bandanas, at a price much lower than they commanded in
the shops. Yet the secret agents, the constabulary, and the troops
began to make it perilous for these law-breakers, and General Tacon
was hopeful of their speedy capture. On a certain morning he looked
up abstractedly from some letters he was writing on the case of
Marti and was astonished to see a burly but well-dressed stranger
standing before his desk. "How in the devil did you get in here, sir,
unannounced?" he asked, in some irritation.

"I come on secret business," replied the other, in a lower tone.

"Ha! About ----"

"Exactly. About Marti."

"Speak, then. You will not be overheard. What do you know?"

"First, your Excellency, let us understand the situation. There is
a large reward for this man, is there not?"

"There is. Capture him and the money is yours. Ah, I see! You wish
to turn state's evidence. So much the better. You shall be protected."

"But suppose I had been associated with the worst of these men? Suppose
I had committed crimes? Suppose I had been a leader?"

"Even in that case you shall be protected."

"Give me your word, as an officer and a gentleman, that, no matter
what my offences have been, I shall have an official pardon when I
put you on the track of the outlaws."

"You must earn the pardon. If you know the haunts of the smugglers
we shall expect you to pilot us to every one of them."

"I will do it. I am tired of an evil life, tired of hiding, tired of
fear, tired of hate. I wish to come back and live among men."

"Well spoken. And Marti?"

"I shall be pardoned, absolutely, when I bring him here?"

"Absolutely. When may we expect him?"

"Now."

"Where?"

"Here."

"What! To-day? This Marti ----"

"You are looking at him."

Tacon started, and his glance fell on a couple of pistols that
lay on the desk before him. He always kept them there, primed and
loaded. Marti smiled, drew from beneath his coat two larger ones,
handsomely mounted with silver, and placed them on the desk. "I am
through with them," said he.

Tacon looked at him almost with admiration. "You begin well,"
he admitted, "and you shall have your pardon. But until you have
fulfilled your promise and helped us to break up these bands of
smugglers and--ah----"

"Oh, speak out: Thieves! That is right."

"Well, thieves,--we must keep you under guard."

"I am satisfied; only, let us get to work as soon as possible, and
have the business over."

"We will start to-morrow."

Marti was placed in a large room in a hotel under watch of the
constabulary, but free to order any comfort or luxury he could pay
for. On the very next morning he set out with a posse of soldiers and
visited all the resorts of his former associates in the vicinity. The
fellows had evidently suspected something, for they had made off. Their
haunts being thus disclosed, however, much of their plunder was
afterward recovered, and Marti's surrender having left them without
a leader, they retreated to distant provinces, and safety and peace
were restored to the island.

If Marti had any misgivings as to the certainty of his pardon after
this exploit, he did not show them. He returned to General Tacon's
office as cool and self-possessed as if he were running a boat-load
of spirits under the noses of the customs officers.

"You have been true to your part of the agreement," said the general,
"and I will be to mine. Here is your pardon, signed and sealed, and
this is my order on the treasury for the reward for your arrest. Sly
dog!"

"I accept the pardon with gratitude, your Excellency, but I do not need
the money. My country is poor. Let her keep it. I am rich. Never mind
how I became so. Yet, if I may claim a reward, give me a monopoly of
the fisheries on this coast. Havana will not suffer if your generosity
takes this form."

And it did not. He got the fisheries, but he spent his profits freely,
and one of the first of his benefactions was the construction of
a market that had no superior in beauty and fitness elsewhere in
the world.



The Justice of Tacon


When the parades were over, or church was out, or it was near time for
the play, one always found a dozen officers and gallants sauntering
down the Calle de Comercio, bound for the same place: the tobacco shop
of Miralda Estalez. In 1835 Miralda was known all over the town as
"the pretty cigar girl," and it was quite the thing for young sprigs
of family to lounge against her counter, tell her how charming she
was, make her light their cigarettes and sometimes take the first
puff from their cigars. All this she took with jesting good-nature,
chaffing all of her customers, commiserating with them in mocking tones
on their fractured hearts, and lamenting the poverty that confined
their purchases to the cheaper brands of her wares. She knew how far
to allow a compliment to go. If it became too free the smile faded
from her lip, her black eyes flashed, and an angry rose mounted into
the clear olive of her cheek.

If there was one young man who, more than any other, caused these
angry symptoms to appear it was the Count Almonte. His attentions had
become annoying. She had told him that his flattery was distasteful;
that her betrothed was Pedro Mantanez, the boatman, and that they were
waiting to be married only until their savings had reached a certain
figure. After one of these dismissals of more than usual frankness,
the count went to his apartments in town, arrayed himself in his
uniform of honorary lieutenant of the guards, asked the commandant to
let him have an escort of half a dozen men, as he expected trouble
at his country-place at Cerito, and within an hour or two appeared
before Miralda's little shop. He entered this time with an easy,
confident air and an evil smile. "You must come with me, my beauty,"
he said, trying to chuck her under the chin.

"Leave my place at once, señor. I have nothing more to say to you."

"Oh, but I have much to say to you; and to begin with, I have a
warrant for your arrest."

"Arrest!"

"For theft,--the theft of a heart,--my heart."

"Your jokes are always in such wretched taste. Your heart! You never
had one."

"Then my duty becomes all the easier. You see this paper? It is an
order for your arrest. Will you go quietly, or do you prefer to go
under guard of a whole company."

Astonished, confused, afraid, yet hoping that one of those wretched
pleasantries known as practical jokes would be the upshot of this
seeming outrage, the girl locked her door, allowed the count to assist
her into the carriage that was in waiting, and was rapidly driven,
not to the jail, not to the forts, not to the police office, but out
of town--to Cerito. He assisted her to alight, urged her hastily in at
the door of a handsome residence, where she was received by a couple
of servants, and escorted to a large, comfortably furnished apartment,
with windows barred after the fashion usual in Spanish houses.

"This, my pretty one, is your home for the future," explained the
count, dropping easily upon a divan and lighting a cigar.

"What place is this?"

"It is my house. Ah, but it shall be yours, if only you are kind. It
is for you to say how long you will be a prisoner."

"But the arrest--the order----"

"Ha! ha! Mere sham. I was bound to have you in one way, if I could
not get you in another. All's fair in love and war. You made war. I
made love."

There was an explosion of wrath, of scorn, of hate; there were tears,
cries, prayers, threats, promises. Count Almonte merely laughed,
and left the young woman to weep herself into a state of resignation
or exhaustion.

Mantanez, the boatman, learned before long that the shop was closed,
and naturally fearing that Miralda had been taken ill, he hurried
around to make inquiry. What he heard was disquieting enough, but he
could not, would not believe it, until he had gone to Cerito to see
for himself. In the gown of a monk he gained access to the grounds,
and walked slowly by, singing the verse of a song that Miralda liked,
meanwhile scanning the windows closely. His heart gave a leap, and then
sank miserably low, for his love appeared behind the bars of an upper
window. She stretched her hands to him appealingly, told him in a few
half-whispered words the story of her abduction, implored him to hurry
back to town, put the case before General Tacon and demand justice.

Mantanez did so. The tale was so unusual that the general made him
swear to the truth of it on his knees before the crucifix. Then he
sent for the count and ordered him to bring the girl with him. In
two hours they were at the palace. The general looked searchingly at
Almonte. "It is a strange charge that has been brought against you,
count," said he, "that of stealing a woman in open day, taking her
to your house and keeping her under lock and key."

"The young woman has been well treated, general."

"You arrested her?"

"Yes."

"In our uniform?"

"It was the only way. I loved her."

"You still love her?"

"To distraction."

"Humph! We shall see. Orderly, send a priest to me, and tell him to
come prepared to perform a marriage ceremony."

Tacon was sphinx-like, and busied himself with his papers. The count
was puzzled, yet smiling, and disposed to be incredulous. The girl
and her lover wore looks of doubt and fear. The priest arrived.

"Father," said Tacon, "you will make the Count Almonte and Miralda
Estalez man and wife."

"Impossible!" exclaimed the count.

"You have just said that you loved her."

"But, your Excellency, you seem to forget that she is but a girl of
the people. I have to remind you that I am of the Spanish nobility;
that my ancestors--"

"Tush, tush! What have your ancestors to do here? You have ruined
the girl, and you shall make amends, here and now."

Miralda clasped her hands in a passion of entreaty, and her betrothed,
the boatman, sank upon a bench, overcome with despair.

"I am sorry for you," continued Tacon, "but there is no other
way. Proceed with the ceremony."

Knowing Tacon to be inflexible, and with a wholesome dread of
punishment in case of refusal, the young rake finally expressed his
willingness to yield to the command, and with a freckled trooper
for bridesmaid, and another for groomsman, the marriage rites were
said. While the priest was speaking Tacon had written a note which he
gave to an orderly, instructing him to deliver it to the captain of
the guard. After the nobleman, flushed and trembling with anger, and
the half-fainting girl had been pronounced man and wife, the boatman
meanwhile abandoning himself to a frenzy of tears, Tacon said to the
count, "Your wife will remain here for the present. It is my order
that you return to your country-house alone. You will depart at once."

With blazing eye, widened nostril, and hard-set jaw, Count Almonte
left the room without any recognition of his bride, without the
usual acknowledgment of the governor-general's presence. Tacon bade
the young woman be seated, and told Mantanez also to remain, as he
wished to speak with them after a time. Ten minutes passed. Some
guns were heard at a distance. In ten minutes more an officer hastily
entered the room. Tacon looked up from his writing. "Report, captain,"
he commanded.

"I have to inform your Excellency that your orders have been
obeyed. The Count Almonte lies dead with nine bullets in his body."

The general arose, took the hand of the young woman and placed it in
that of the boatman. "Countess," he said, "you are the widow of a rich
man. You are sole heir to the estate of the late Count Almonte. As
to you, sir, I presume you have no objection to wedding a lady so
well provided with this world's goods. Adieu, Madame Countess, and
may your second marriage be happier than your first."



The Cited


Did Alonzo Morelos begrudge liberty or happiness to Felipe
Guayos? Surely the life of a Havanese artisan could have mattered
little to a prosperous lawyer. Politics may have set the big man's
enmity against the little one, or it may possibly have been that more
advanced form of politics that is called patriotism. It was a good
time for a man to refrain from airing his opinions, unless they were
orthodox, for the revolution of 1829 had just been declared. If Guayos
was a party to this rising he was an indifferent and inactive one,
or else he kept his counsel wondrous well. His acquaintances testified
that he was industrious,--that is, he practised what in Havana passed
for industry,--was fond of his wife, cared little for cock-fighting
or the bull-ring, was of placid demeanor, and was altogether the sort
of man who could be relied on _not_ to attend secret meetings or lose
valued sleep by drilling in hot barns or chigger-infested clearings
in the woods. Yet it was on Morelos's oath that this obscure citizen
was arrested.

The tongues clacked up and down the by-ways: What was the rich
man's interest in the poor one? the professional man's in the
mechanic? the man of society in the man unknown? Then it was true,
eh? that the mulatto (for Guayos was a "yellow man") had spoken
to the lawyer familiarly in the street in presence of ladies and
officers? Maybe. The laundress at the second house down the street had
said so, but, fie! it was only on a matter of business. Tut! Business
was no excuse, considering that Don Alonzo was of Spanish parentage,
while the other had been nothing but a Cuban for two centuries. To
forget this breach or try to bridge it, to presume on the tolerance of
an occasional employer, unless one were a slave or a servant and used
to indulgence--that was not to be forgiven. A rumor that travelled
more quietly was that Morelos himself was a revolutionary and had
caused this arrest as a blind, or in order to silence a tongue that
might speak damage. A third rumor, that went in a whisper, and so went
farther than the others, said that the yellow man had a pretty wife,
and that the lawyer had been seen to call at the little house in the
master's absence. This tale seemed to be doubted, for the wife of the
butcher gave it as her opinion that the Señora Guayos was too rusty
of complexion to be pleasing, and the Señor Morelos was so faultless
in his appearance and his taste; the club steward's unmarried sister
declared the señora's manners to be rustic and her voice loud; the
woman in the carpenter's family would lend no ear to such a scandal
because the subject of it was dumpy, shapeless, and dressed absurdly,
even for the wife of a stonemason. Howbeit, the little woman was now in
grief, for her husband lay in jail awaiting trial on the gravest charge
that could be brought against a Cuban,--the charge of treason. In
that day, as on many sad days that were to follow, to be charged with
disaffection toward the crown was virtually to be sentenced to death.

Cuban law was at least as tardy and involved as any, but on the day
when they tried Guayos it was strangely brisk. The stifling, unclean
court-room was crowded, but of all the company none seemed to feel so
little concern in the proceedings as the accused man himself. Through
an open window he saw a couple of palms swinging softly against the sky
in the warm wind. The trees appeared to pacify, to fascinate him. They
were his realities, and the goggling throng, the judge, the officers,
were visions. Often when his name was spoken by a witness or examiner
he would look around with a start, then fall into his dreams again. His
case was traversed without waste of words. Evidence was adduced to
prove that he had once owned a gun, had attended a certain meeting,
had carried letters to such and such persons, had spoken equivocal
phrases, had been seen to lift his nose in passing certain men, had
admitted a suspect to his house at night. He was declared guilty. The
celerity in reaching this verdict led his friends to believe that it
had been agreed upon in advance.

During the last hour of the trial Guayos had aroused from his revery,
had turned from the window, and had fixed his eyes steadily on Morelos,
who was seated among the lawyers in the centre of the room. Morelos
returned the gaze calmly for a time; then he frowned and turned the
pages of a law-book. After a little he moistened his lips with his
tongue, took a studied attitude of listlessness, and showed signs of
weariness and boredom. He did not look at the prisoner again until
the verdict had been given.

When the chief judge put the usual question as to whether the convicted
man had anything to say why death-sentence should not be passed upon
him, Guayos arose, his face pale but fixed in a stony calm. Looking
at neither judge nor audience, but straight at his accuser, with eyes
that were no longer the eyes that had dreamed upon the palms, so great
and black they were and searching, he said, in a clear, tense voice,
"I go to my death. It is useless to speak, for you have condemned
me. But I cite you, Don Alonzo Morelos, to appear beside me at the bar
of God, one year from my death-day, and testify how I came to my end."

There was a moment of silence; then moans and murmurs in the crowd. The
lawyer was white, as with wrath. The judges gestured to the officers
and left the bench. The court was cleared. As he was led away,
Guayos looked once more at the palms, and half smiled as a breath of
freshened air came in at the window. Palms! Where had he been told of
them? What did they mean? Had they not somewhere, in some far land,
been waved in victory when One innocent was about to suffer? Were
not palms awarded in another world to the meek and the honest who
had been despitefully used in this?

Last to leave the room was Morelos. He had remained, seated at a
table, biting a pen, fingering some papers, gazing abstractedly at
the vacant bench. The whoop of a barefooted, black-faced urchin in
the corridor roused him. With a scowl and a shrug he slowly resumed
his hat and went to his home by a roundabout way.

Priests called daily at the prison. Guayos made no appeal, asked for
no delay. The loyalists were clamoring for an example that should
stay the revolution. In a week the condemned man was hanged. An
odd thing happened at the execution: the rope had slipped a little,
and the knot, working toward the front, had left an impress there
after the body was cut down, as of two crossed fingers. The friends
of Guayos held this to be a sign of grace.

Now, if there were any in the world to pray for the peace of a human
soul, it was not the soul of Guayos that asked it. He had affirmed his
innocence to the end, had been shrived, had gone to the gallows with
a dauntless tread, and there were palm branches on his coffin. But
the lawyer? In a month after the trial white hairs appeared among
his locks, hitherto as black as coal. He grew gray and dry in his
complexion, his shoulders began to stoop, his eyes lost their clearness
and boldness, his mouth was no longer firm. Often he wore a harried,
hunted look. Yet they said he was growing softer in his humor, that
he oftener went to church, that he gave more for charity than other
men of his means, and that if the widow Guayos did not know from whom
the five hundred pesetas came that a messenger left at her home one
night the neighbors pretended to. Don Morelos became an object of a
wider interest than he knew. Even the boys in the street would point
as he passed, with head bent and hands clasped behind his back, and
whisper, "There goes El Citado" (the cited), and among the commoners
he was known as well by that name as by the one his parents had given
to him. But he appeared less and less in public. He began to neglect
his practice; he resigned from his club; he avoided the company of
his former associates, taking his walks at night alone, even though
the sky was moonless, storms were threatening, and the cut-throat crew
were abroad that made life at some hours and in some quarters of the
city not of a pin's fee in value. His housekeeper told a neighbor
that on some nights he paced the floor till dawn, and that now and
again he would mutter to himself and appear to strike something. Was
he smiting his own heart?

Before long it was rumored, likewise, that the grave of Guayos was
haunted, or worse, for a black figure had been seen, on some of the
darkest nights, squatted or kneeling before his tomb. It was remarkable
that this revolutionist should have had a burial-place of his own,
when all his relatives and a majority of the people in his station
were interred in rented graves, and their bones thrown into the common
ditch if the rent were not paid at the end of the second year. Certain
old women affirmed that this watching, waiting figure in the dark had
horns and green eyes, like a cat's, while other people said that it
was merely the form of a man, taller, thinner, more bent than Guayos;
therefore not his ghost. But what man?

The anniversary of the hanging had come. The small hours of the
morning were tolling, heavily, slowly, over the roofs of the sleeping
city. Sleeping? There was one who had no rest that night. An upper
window of the house of Morelos looked out upon a court in which two
palm trees grew. They had been tall and flourishing. One might see
them from the court-room. But for a year they had been shedding their
leaflets and turning sere. Tonight their yellow stems had clashed and
whispered until the wind was down, leaving the night sullen, brooding,
thick, starless, with dashes of rain and a raw chill on the ground that
brought out all the malefic odors of the pavement. The window on the
side toward the court was closed and curtained. The one overlooking
the street was slightly open, and if the night-bird prowling toward
the den he called his home had looked up, or had listened, he would
have seen the glimmer of a candle and heard the eager scratching of
a pen and rustling of papers. For an hour in the first half of the
night Morelos had been walking about his chamber. At about three in
the morning the housekeeper, whose room was at the opposite end of a
corridor from her master's, found herself sitting upright in bed. She
did not know why. Nobody had called to her. Listening intently, as if
she knew that somebody was about to speak, she distinguished a faint
sound of crumpling paper. A chair was moved hastily, and there was a
cry in a strained voice, "No, no! My God!" Then the house shook. She
bolted her door and prayed. In the morning twilight Don Alonzo Morelos
lay very still on the floor of his chamber, with a mark on his throat
like that made by the pressure of two crossed fingers.

The citation had been obeyed!



The Virgin's Diamond


Miguel Jose was a loving and dutiful son, but he could help the old
folks only a little. He had a heartache every time a letter came
from Leon, for he knew it held a request for money, and a private's
pay, which at best is small, is frequently nothing in a Spanish
regiment. Young Miguel had been on service in Havana for a couple of
years, and his parents had been growing steadily poorer. He could
hardly buy cigarettes. First it was a pig that was wanted at home;
then a better roof on the cottage; then a contribution for a new
altar in the village church; finally it was illness, and his mother
needed medicines and delicacies. How could he get money? The paymaster
had received none in months, he said, and even the officers were in
debt. His fellow-soldiers? No; they were as poorly off as he,--so he
could not borrow. He could not steal in the streets, for his uniform
would betray him. He was not allowed to accept work from civilians,
for that was against the army regulations. After dress-parade one
evening he went to a lonely place behind the barracks and cried. Then,
having leave of absence, he went to one of the churches and knelt for
a long time before the Virgin's shrine, imploring her, with moans and
tears, to give him some means of relieving his mother's distress. She
was a mother. She would understand. She would pity the sufferings
of others. There was no answer. He left the dark and empty building
tired and disheartened.

Next evening he returned, and for an hour and more he begged the
Virgin to bestow some material mercy on his mother. Looking up he was
startled, though delighted, to see that the statue of Mary was rolling
its glass eyes upon him, and tears stood in them. He bent to the floor,
overcome by his emotions. Then a light step sounded over the stones,
and, behold! the Virgin had left her pedestal and was regarding him
with kindness and pity in her face. Slowly she extended her hand. He
gazed with new astonishment, for this was the right hand, bearing
the famous diamond which had been placed upon it some years before
by a pious resident of Havana. It could not be that she intended
this treasure for him! Yes, she smiled and nodded assuringly. With
trembling fingers he withdrew the jewel, kissed the outreached hand,
stammered his thanks, and, hardly waiting till she had remounted her
pedestal, ran from the church.

There was in the city at that time one Señor Hyman Izaaks, whose
business--which a cruel law required him to follow in secret--was the
relief of pecuniary embarrassments, on security, and our soldier went
straightway to the office of that philanthropist, arriving breathless
but happy. Señor Izaaks advanced a larger sum on the diamond than
Jose had dared to hope for. He wrote a hasty letter, enclosing the
banknotes, and mailed it to his parents on that very night.

Next morning the sacristan of the church, who was making his
rounds and placing fresh candles on the altar, received a shock. The
Virgin's diamond was gone! The priests, the bishop, the governor, the
general, the police were notified, and there was a mighty coil. What
sacrilegious wretch had done this thing? Miguel had been seen to enter
the church on the previous night; therefore suspicion attached to
him. He was arrested and charged with the crime. To the astonishment
of all, he made no secret of it, though he protested against the word
"theft." He was proud to have been the recipient of kindness from
heaven, and he related, frankly and circumstantially, how he had
appealed to the Virgin, for what good purpose, how she had answered,
how Señor Izaaks had taken the stone and given him money for it. A
military court was ordered to try him, but it was puzzled to know
what to do with him. If the fellow were a common thief he deserved
more than prison: he merited the gallows and a quicklime burial,
for he had added sacrilege to robbery. But if he were a thief, why
did he confess so freely, and even glory in his sin? Then, too, if
it were the wish of the Virgin that he should receive this gift, by
what right did any civic or military body interfere, for would it not
be blasphemy to doubt or deny the designs of Providence? Was not the
accused soldier under the acknowledged protection of the Virgin? Would
she not visit with indignation, if she did not vigorously punish,
the attempt to set aside her benefits?

Truly, here was a pickle! The confession of the accused man had
enabled the police to secure the diamond,--which they did without any
formalities of payment to Señor Izaaks, to his unbounded grief,--and
the ring being restored to the finger of the statue, and the money
being on its way across the sea, and the soldier being entitled to
some part of it as back-pay, the court-martial at length resolved to
release Miguel Jose from arrest. It did so with the historic finding of
"Not guilty, but don't do it again."



A Spanish Holofernes


While it has been the fate of women in the Spanish islands to suffer
even more than their husbands and brothers from severity and injustice,
instances are not lacking in which they have shown an equal spirit
with the men. In the insurrections a few of them openly took the
field, and the Maid of Las Tunas is remembered,--a Cuban Joan of Arc,
who rode at the head of the rebel troops, battled as stoutly as the
veterans, and was of special service as scout and spy. Three times
she fell into the hands of the Spaniards. Twice she coaxed her way
to freedom. The third time the governor gave her to a crowd of brutal
soldiers, who afterward burned her alive.

Quite another sort of woman was Niña Diaz, whom Weyler intended to
compliment when he said she was the only loyal Cuban, and who is hated
by all other Cubans as a fiend. Her love for a Spanish captain was
cleverly played upon by Weyler, who induced her to become his spy. She
begged contributions for the insurgents. Of course, those who gave
were in sympathy with the insurrection, so that all she had to do was
to place her list of subscribers in the hands of Weyler, who promptly
shot or imprisoned them, or herded them among the reconcentrados to
die of starvation. When the Cubans caught her she said that she had
a father and a brother in their ranks,--which was true,--and was on
her way to them. Where could they be found? They told her and set
her free, and in the morning the Spanish troops were on the march to
their hiding-place.

It is pleasanter to read of Spanish women serving their own cause
than of Cuban women who betrayed their country, and the Spanish dames
have often shown as much grit and pride as the dons. Pauline Macias
is alleged to have led the soldiers back to their guns in San Juan
de Puerto Rico after they had run from Sampson's shells. She seized
a sword from an officer, beat the runaways with it, roused them by
pleas and commands, and kept them at their work until their pieces
were disabled or the ammunition had given out.

In the tradition of an earlier and slighter war the heroine is a
woman of still different type. Isabella, wife of the Doctor Diaz, was
often called "the queen" in Bayamo, not merely because of her name,
but because of her piety, her charities, her beauty, and her dignified
bearing. She was young, well reared, distinguished, and her home was a
centre for the best society of the town. Among those who felt free to
call without invitation were several of the officers of the garrison,
most of them models in deportment and dress, and of sufficient breeding
to refrain from allusion to politics; for the Diazes, though Spanish
by only one remove, were avowedly Cuban in their sympathies, and the
revolution was fast coming to a focus. It was understood, however,
that Doctor Diaz would remain a non-combatant, for the duty he owed
to suffering humanity was higher than the duty his friends tried to
persuade him he owed to his country. Hence, the physician and his
wife would be under the white flag, it was supposed, and if remarks
were made as to their share in the approaching hostilities, it was
always with a frank and laughing admission on their part and a jest
on that of the accusers.

Among all the men in the garrison but one was actually disliked by
the young practitioner and his wife. Captain Ramon Gonzales had been
quartered upon them once for a week in an emergency, and his removal
to another household had been asked for. It was not that he lacked
manners or was obviously disrespectful, but his compliments to the
lady of the house were something too frequent, his regard of her too
admiring, his air toward the doctor that of the soldier and superior,
rather than the friend. Señora Diaz never saw him alone, never invited
him to call. He disappeared one afternoon, and it was understood that
he had received a summons to return to Havana.

The rising came at last. Fires glimmered on the hills, bodies of men
assembled in the woods, the drumming and brawling of troops were heard
in hitherto quiet villages, and prayers for the success of the Cuban
arms were offered in a hundred churches. But not all the women were
content to pray. They were helping to arm their husbands, brothers,
sweethearts, sons; they worked together in assembling supplies,
hospital stores, clothing, and even in casting bullets.

One or two nights after the first blow had been struck there came
a loud summons at the door of Doctor Diaz. Thinking it a call for
his services, he stepped into the dark street, when he was seized,
handcuffed, placed between two lines of soldiers, and marched away
to prison. The despairing cry of his wife, as she peered from the
open door and saw this arrest, was the only farewell. He never heard
her voice again. He was shot a few days later as an enemy to Spain,
the specific charge against him being that of "aiding and sheltering"
a rebel, the said rebel being a feeble-minded youth, a "moon-struck,"
to whom, as a matter of charity, he had given occasional work in
weeding his garden. On the night after Doctor Diaz's arrest his
wife was requested by a messenger to go quickly to a small house
on the edge of the town to meet one who might secure his release,
but wished to consult with her as to the means. Hastily wrapping a
mantilla about her, she followed the messenger to the street; then,
as acting under sudden impulse, left him waiting for a moment, while
she returned to bolt a door. In that moment, unseen by the messenger,
she slipped a sheathed stiletto into the bosom of her dress.

The house was a ramshackle cottage, with a damp and moldy air pervading
it within and without. The negro messenger opened the door without
knocking, held it open while she passed in, then abruptly closed it
and turned a key on the outside. The woman was trapped. In a minute
voices were heard in the street; that of the messenger, and one that
she knew better,--and worse,--the voice of Captain Gonzales.

The situation flashed upon her. Her husband had been falsely
charged. She had been lured to this place, and would leave it dead or
dishonored. The walls of the cabin swam before her, and she had nearly
fallen when the sound of the key in the lock aroused her. A fierce
chill shook her frame. She held to a table for support. A tumult of
thought possessed her, but as the door swung open it quieted to a
single idea: hardly a thought: a purpose.

In the light of the single candle that stood on the table she saw
Captain Gonzales enter. He had been at the wine. His eyes were heavy,
his cheeks a dusky red, his mouth was more sensual, his jaw more
cruel than ever. He stepped inside and locked the door. "Your pardon,
señora, for these strong measures," he said, in a thick tone. "I
am a victim of love and hate. Your hus--another--has hated me. Your
husband is--is--likely to be absent for some time. You will require
a protector. I have the honor to offer myself. I throw myself at the
feet of the loveliest lady in Cuba. I tell her of the love that for
the past year has turned my life to torture. I will be her companion,
her adorer, only--ha! You smile! It is not possible you care for
me? It is joy too great. Señora! Isabella! Can it be?"

"And you never suspected it before?"

The face was white, the lips twitched, but the smile remained. The
woman cast down her eyes--what star-bright eyes they were!--then
slowly opened her arms. With a roaring laugh Gonzales strode across
the room. The laugh changed to a gurgling cry as he placed his hands
upon her waist. His hand went to his sword, but fumbled; his knees
shook; then he fell backward at full length, with his heart's blood
pulsating from a dagger-wound. The wife of Doctor Diaz picked up the
key that had fallen from his fingers, unlocked the door, and returned
to her home alone.



The Courteous Battle


In the bay where more than three and a half centuries later the Spanish
fleet was to be destroyed the don once fought the enemy with different
result. It was in 1538, in the harbor of Santiago de Cuba, that the
battle occurred,--Santiago of sad memory, with its shambles, where
insurgents were shot by platoons; with its landings, where slaves were
unloaded at night and marched thence to the plantations, like mules and
cattle; with its Morro, connected by wells and traps with caves in the
rock beneath, where bodies of men mysteriously done to death slipped
away on the tide. A French privateer had appeared before the town,
demanding ransom or surrender. Luckily for Santiago, a Spanish caravel
had arrived a few days before, under command of Captain Diego Perez,
and this gallant sailor offered to go out and defend the town. His
ship was attacked as soon as it came within range of the enemy's guns,
and, turning so as to deliver an effective fire, he gave as good as
he got. All that day the people of the town heard the pounding of
the brass pieces and saw the smudge of powder against the blue to
the south, yet at the fall of evening little damage had been done:
the ships lay too far apart, and the aim on both sides was ridiculous.

Each commander had seen enough of his adversary to respect him,
however, and moved by a common impulse they raised white flags,
declared for a cessation of hostilities through the night, and every
night, so long as they should continue to oppose one another. Then
followed an exchange of fruit and wine, of which both crews were in
need, and, confident in the honor of their enemies, all hands slept
as tired men usually sleep. Said the Spanish captain to the French
commander in the morning, "Artillery is a cowardly and abominable
invention. It is desired to hurt a foe while those who serve it run
no risk. How say you if we put the tompions back into our cannon and
fight, as chivalric men should ever fight, with sword and pike?"

To this the Frenchman gave willing consent, and, the ships ranging
near, the battle reopened, after prayers and breakfast, to some
purpose. With cries of "Santo Iago!" the Spanish tried to board the
pirate ship, but could not secure a footing. Blows were exchanged
throughout the day, save when one ship or the other drew off, that
the wounded might have attention, and the dying prayers, for much
blood was shed and several lost their lives. At the end of the day
both commanders declared their admiration for the skill and courage
of their opponents, and again gave presents of fruit and wine as they
stopped work until the morrow. Perez sent ashore that night to tell
the people of Santiago that fighting was an exhausting business,
and to some extent a risky one, and would they kindly send a few
able-bodied fellows to replace the dead and disabled on his ship?

The response to this call was so meagre that he began to mistrust
his countrymen, and he asked if, in case he lost his ship, the town
would reimburse him, considering that he was risking his all in
their defence. After much debate the townsmen replied, through their
officials, that they were not in a position to make good his loss,
but they trusted that such a calamity would not be possible; that he
would maintain a stout heart and fight on to prove the superiority
of Spanish valor to French craft; that the blessed Santo Iago would
watch over him and his gallant crew; that their best wishes were
with him, and that his kindness would never, never be forgotten. A
trifle disheartened, Captain Perez nevertheless resumed the fight
on the next day, and again on the fourth day, and after the usual
exchange of courtesies at evening, he told the privateer on the fifth
day that he would encounter with him as usual. The persistence of the
Spaniard in thus holding out against seeming odds--for the Frenchman
had the larger crew--set the privateer to thinking, and a sudden
fear arose within him that Spanish reinforcements were on their
way, and that Perez was merely fighting for time until they should
arrive. This fear grew until it became belief, though a baseless one,
and, hoisting sail as quietly as possible, he stole out of Santiago
Bay on the fourth night after hostilities had opened. As thanks are
cheap, Perez received a good many of them.



Why King Congo was Late


As in all the Spanish Americas, there were churchly feasts and
celebrations in Cuba whose origin has been forgot. Why did the
slaves serenade their masters on New Year morning, jingling huge
tambourines, and in the villages how came it to be thought that the
cause of righteousness was advanced by parades and music on saints'
days? Hatred of the Jews was an inheritance rather than an experience,
and for lack of Jews to prove it upon there was an annual display
of wrath at Judas, who was represented by a grotesque effigy made
up of straw, old clothes, and a mask. In the cities this figure was
merely called The Jew, and after being carried through the streets
with revilings, on the day after Good Friday, it was hanged in some
conspicuous place and there stoned and shot by the crowd.

In Santiago there used to be a queer celebration on the 6th of
January, "the day of the kings," or "All Kings' day," meaning the
kings who journeyed to Bethlehem to worship the new-born Christ. In
time this function lost its dignity and became a sport, a gasconade,
in which the slaves attired themselves extravagantly and paraded about,
begging, blowing horns, beating drums, and bandying jokes with the
spectators. In the days of King Congo the procession had some claim
to show and importance, if only because he was at the head of it,
for he had, in ways known only to himself, come into possession of
the chapeau of a captain-general, a lieutenant's coat, one epaulette,
a pair of blue breeches, and a belt; hence, attired in all these
grandeurs at once, and mounted on a mule, he looked every inch the king
he said he was. For, albeit, he had been a slave, he claimed an African
king as his father, and as that parent was dead, for aught he could
certify to the contrary, the title, if not the crown and emoluments,
descended to him; leastwise, nobody on this side of the sea could
dispute it; and he bore it with conscious dignity. His family name,
if he had one, has been lost, and it is as King Congo that he was
known. That his royalty was genuine the other negroes never doubted,
and to parade on the day of the kings without a real king of their
own color to marshal the procession was not to be thought of.

El Rey Congo was aware of his power and of the impression he made on
the humbler residents of Santiago. Every now and then he heightened his
superiority to common clay by appearing in public in a starched collar,
looking over the top of it with an assumption of pride and ease, as
of one born to such luxury, but in reality chafing his neck against
its ragged edges and longing to be in the fields, where he would not
need to be spectacular. One year the day of the kings dawned without a
cloud, and Santiago was in a holiday humor. Everybody who had work to
do postponed it till to-morrow, as if All Kings' Day were like every
other day; for the procession that year was to be extra large and
fine. King Congo was to ride with spurs, though barefooted, and was
to have a military guard of four men. The band had been increased,
especially in the drum department, and the ladies, who would have
figured in the king's court if he had had a court, were turbaned
in new bandanas of red and yellow. The clergy and officers of the
garrison had promised to review the parade, and the cooper, down by
the custom-house, suggested that he'd better put a few hoops around
King Congo to keep his swelling heart from cracking his ribs.

A long trumpet-call from the square announced the hour for assembly,
and all eyes turned toward the street through which the king had been
used to make his entry. He did not come. Tardiness is a privilege
of kings. It proves them superior to the obligations laid upon the
vulgar herd. Beside, what is an hour in a mañana country? But as
the hour went by and the king kept refraining from his arrival, some
presuming subjects went to look him up, and after much inquiry and
pedestrian exercise they found the sovereign in jail. His Majesty
explained that he had been arrested for debt a few days before,
and that because of a shortage in the paltry coin of a white man's
state--a wretched matter of $4.15--he was doomed to remain behind
the bars, perhaps forever. The messengers ran back to the square,
made an excited appeal to the populace, scratched the required sum
together in penny subscriptions, paid the innkeeper every centavo
that the king owed him, woke up the sheriff and the magistrate,
and before noon King Congo was a free man, in the same old uniform,
riding the same old mule, and stiffly bowing to the admiring populace
as he passed. The parade was a great success. So was the scheme
conceived that morning by el Rey Congo; for, every year thereafter,
three or four days before the festival of the adoration, he laid in
supplies of rum and cigars, with even a new hat or a second-hand
medal, and after getting the goods safely bestowed in his cabin,
defied his creditors to collect their pay. The shopkeepers winked at
this device, and regularly sent him to jail, for they knew that on the
6th of January their royal customer would pay, though by proxy. And
that is more than you can say of some kings. Isn't it?



The Chase of Taito Perico


In 1779 the Bishop of Havana took into his household as servants,
and into the cathedral as altar-boys, three harum-scarum Indians, then
said to have come from Florida, now believed to have been of Mexican
origin, though there were not wanting citizens who solemnly declared
that the trio had come from a warmer place than any on the surface of
this planet. The object in the bishop's mind was to Christianize the
scapegraces and turn them loose among their own people, that they, too,
might be made to see the light. The poor old clergyman little knew with
whom he had to deal. When the astonishment of the youngsters at the
glories of Havana had subsided, and even a regiment with a band could
parade without their company, the Indian in them asserted itself once
more, and they grieved the bishop by playing hookey, shirking mass,
running off to the mountains on hunting trips, and once, when he went
out in his night-cap to inquire the cause of a rumpus in his yard,
they tripped him up and circled around and around, whooping like
demons while he was trying to regain his feet and apply his cane.

At last they upset, not the clergy but the laws. Their offence was
not grave, being rather a result of high spirits than of malice, but
it brought the constabulary upon them and they were carried to the
arsenal to work out the term of their imprisonment at loading ships
and other heavy, uncongenial labor. Not many days had passed here
before a chance offered for their escape, and they seized upon it,
vanishing under the noses of the guard--at least, that was the way
the guard reported it--like shadows before the sun. In fact, from
that hour they were looked upon as a bit uncanny. The three lads
found a hiding-place in the Falaco vegas, among a vagrom populace
of brigands, runaway slaves, and wreckers, and there for several
weeks they supported themselves by hunting, fishing, gambling, even
working a little when sore pressed. Better if they had been left
alone to live out their lives there. If useless, they at least were
harmless. But, no; the majesty of the law again asserted itself. They
were caught by a company of soldiers and marched back to Havana. Their
protector and friend, the bishop, was dead. Again they were laden with
chains and returned to the arsenal to work out some months of penal
servitude. Their natures seemed to change in a day. To them Spaniards
and Cubans now stood for tyranny and injustice. They did not understand
their imprisonment as a correction: it was an act of oppression, and
how were they to know that it would not last for the remainder of their
lives? Every waking moment from the time of their second arrest they
gave to plots for liberty and vengeance. The escape came presently. It
seemed as if walls and bars were not made that could restrain them.

Two days after this last escape the country-side was stirred with
horror, for just before dawn a hamlet near Guanes was burned, and
when the neighbors, attracted by the flame and smoke seen above the
tree-tops, arrived on the ground they found the gashed bodies of the
inhabitants lying about on the gore-sodden earth. The quickness, the
secrecy of the act were terrifying. All sorts of fantastic reports
were spread about the province, especially after the massacre and
the burning had been repeated in a second village--and a third--and
a fourth. The vega was in a panic. The people went from place to
place only in armed bands. The Vuelta Abajo was completely cowed, and
sentries patrolled every settlement. It was reported that the murders
had been committed by three giants who cut down men, horses, and cattle
as they stalked across the country, and whose weapons were charmed,
so that they always struck a vital spot, no matter how carelessly
they were aimed. The three monsters were of vast strength and horrible
countenance; they climbed tall cliffs as cats climb fences, and leaped
chasms fifty feet across as other men skip over gutters.

A cave near Cape San Antonio that the aborigines had chambered for
tombs was their reputed hiding-place, where they also worshipped
their master, Satan, with fantastic ceremonies, and sacrificed in his
honor the best of the cattle, sheep, and horses they captured on their
raids. And the utter helplessness of the Spanish authorities gave a
certain color to these rumors, for the giants snapped their fingers
at their pursuers and went on killing, looting, burning, running off
stock, always appearing in unexpected places and disappearing like
mists at sunrise. Thus, two and a half years went by, and the offer of
five thousand dollars each for the heads of the devil-brigands had come
to nothing. Finally the Havana authorities were prayed and pestered
into a spell of activity. They organized a troop of one hundred and
fifty men and sixty dogs, put twenty officers at the head, and sent
along four chaplains to pray the evil charms away. The three savages
were cornered on a mountain, where two of them were killed after they
had inflicted many hurts on their pursuers. The heads of these two
were lopped, forwarded to the capital, and every one supposed that
the reign of terror was at an end.

But, as if the strength of the slain ones had passed into his arm,
the third man, Taito Perico, who had escaped during the fight, became
a greater scourge than ever. He was fury incarnate, and so sudden
were his visitations, so quick and deadly his work, so complete
his disappearances, that more than ever it was believed he was a
fiend. He resumed the work of slaughter in the Vuelta Arriba. He
had a horse now, carried a huge lance, and killed or wounded almost
every one he met,--but not all. There was in this black heart a core
of sympathy. Once he stole a little child and kept her with him for
some time, lavishing on her the affection of a barbarian big brother,
and so endearing him to her that when she was rescued from his jungle
haunt, while he was absent hunting, she wept for the kind Taito Perico,
even in her parents' arms. Then he stole a boy of eight years and
kept him for some months, allowing him at the end of that time to
return unharmed to his parents.

It was in one of these abductions that he worked his own undoing. Near
St. John of the Remedies lived the pretty Anita de Pareira, daughter
of a frugal and worthy couple and fiancée of a prosperous planter of
the district. The time for the wedding having been set, the father
and mother were in their little garden discussing ways and means,
and Anita was indoors trimming the gown in which she was to walk to
the altar. Her head was full of pretty fancies, and she hummed softly
to herself as she plied her needle or gazed into the distance, smiling
at the pictures created by her own fancy. She was rudely awakened from
these pleasing reveries. The door was burst in by a tremendous blow
with a fist and there stood glaring upon her a Caliban with mighty
neck and shoulders, great goggling eyes, a hooked nose, a bush of
coarse hair erect upon his head, and a stout lance in his hand. As
this creature advanced into the room with extended arms she swooned
and did not regain her senses until she had been carried for a mile
or more from her home. She found herself lying across the back of a
horse that was galloping furiously toward the hills with the savage
in the saddle behind her.

The father and mother ran into the road tossing their hands in despair;
a dozen belated rescuers hurried to them, each arrival adding his
screams to the hubbub; then each advising the rest what should be done,
and nobody doing anything. The young planter, Anita's betrothed, was
quickly on the ground, and he alone was resolute and cool. He gathered
the bolder men about him, saw that they were supplied with proper arms
and mounts, and with encouraging words to those who were left behind,
he rode away on the outlaw's trail. Over pastures, through ravines,
across rivers, under forest arches dim as twilight, they hurried on,
a pack of hounds yapping in advance, a broken branch, a trampled bush,
a hoof-print in the margin of a stream also giving proof that they were
on the right path; a herder, who had seen the ruffian pass, likewise
testifying to the fact, and giving his service to the company; and
so they came to a clearing, where they found the marauder's abandoned
and exhausted horse.

Putting their own horses under guard of negroes, twenty of the men
pressed on afoot through tangled vines and thorny bushes, still led
by the dogs, until they brought up at the bottom of a tall cliff,
and here the hounds seemed to be at fault, for they ran around and
around a tree, looking up into it and whining. The herder swung himself
into the branches and scrambled almost to the top. "Nobody here," he
called. Then, when he had partly descended, they heard him utter an
exclamation of surprise. He crept to the end of a long branch and swung
lightly to a shelf on the face of the crag. "Footsteps!" he exclaimed,
in a low, strained voice, and pointed to a thin turf that covered the
jut of rock. The dogs were right. Taito Perico had climbed the tree and
scaled the cliff. The dogs were hoisted by means of a lariat, the men
gained the shelf, and clambering along in single file they presently
reached the summit. A furious barking led them on; then those in the
rear heard a shout. The savage was seen, half a mile away, crossing
an opening at a run and striking at the dogs that leaped and yelped
around him. Leaving his companions to follow the Indian, the lover
devoted himself to the search for Anita, and presently found her at
the foot of a tree, bound, gagged, but safe and thankful.

For several days and nights the chase went on and on with
reinforcements, and the Indian was at last overtaken on the mountain
that, in memory of the event, bears the name of Loma del Indio,
where he was slain, to the great relief of the whole island. Even
in death his aspect was so terrific that the people along the way
were set a-shaking and a-praying as his body was carried on to Puerto
Principe. Though he could do harm no longer, the post-mortem punishment
inflicted on him gave general satisfaction; for the corpse was first
hanged, then dragged at a horse's heels, then chopped apart and buried
in several places, and the head, in a cage, was exposed on a pole in
Tanima. And if three men like Taito Perico could terrorize all Cuba,
a hundred of such would have freed it.



The Voice in the Inn


"No trifling, señor. Speak up plainly and say what you heard." The
prosecuting attorney gave a nervous twitch at his pointed beard,
a habit peculiar to him, and leaned a little toward the witness. The
elder judge blinked drowsily, straightened in his chair, then turned
and looked at the crucifix on the wall, for when the sun touched the
bloody figure on the cross it was time for lunch. It was still in
shadow. He sighed. His associates of the tribunal were duly attent.

"I'm afraid you will not believe me," objected the witness.

"Never mind your fears. Come, now: You were passing the deserted inn
on the Minas road, you say, when you heard a voice. The voice of one
of the brigands?"

"I hardly think so, señor."

"How? You charge this defendant here ----"

"With attempted robbery. Yes, señor attorney. But it was not his
voice that spoke. I think worse mischief has been done near the inn."

"Worse mischief?"

"Truly. For when this thief heard the words he let his pistol fall
and dropped the bridle of my mule. By the moon I could see his face
glisten with sweat, and it looked white."

"He was afraid, eh? He was a coward? This poor cheat of a creature
could not even be a brigand?"

"Afraid! Any one would be. As for myself, I gave my mule a cut and he
was off at a lope, with this fellow coming after as fast as his legs
could carry him, until he ran plump into the arms of the civil guard."

"Yes, yes. You have told all that. But this voice. You heard it
plainly?"

"Why, yes, although it sounded as if it came from a distance, or from
under a building, or--or--out of a tomb. I couldn't--I couldn't help
thinking it sounded like a man beneath a floor."

The attorney twisted his beard again impatiently, coughed, then tightly
folded his arms. He was silent for a little. Then, as if surprising
himself out of a revery, he commanded, "Well, well. Go on."

"This voice, señor," resumed the witness, leaning forward and speaking
mysteriously, "it was so hollow and low, and spoke the words so long,
like a creature dying and in pain, and it gave me a chill."

"Are you never to tell us what it said?"

"It moaned, 'For the sake of the Virgin, of Her Blessed Son, of the
Holy Saint Peter, of the Good God, pray for me. Pray for a sinner. Beg
the good fathers at Nuevitas to say a mass for the soul of Enrique
Carillo.' Then there was a sort of groan----"

"My God!" It was the prosecutor who had gasped the words.

"Yes, just like that. Ah! Pardon, señor. I did not see. You are ill."

For the lawyer's face had become of a deathly pallor, his head had
sunk forward, his lips trembled, his hands shook as they clutched
the edge of the table behind him. The idlers in the back of the room
were awake in a moment. The sun touched the figure of Christ, splashed
with blood in the fashion of the official crucifix, and it seemed to
look down on the scene below as in torture. The prisoner's counsel
sprang forward, placed a chair for his opponent and helped him to be
seated. An officer brought a glass of water, which the lawyer drank
eagerly, then sat as in a daze for an instant, shuddered, passed his
hands over his face, and said, "I ask the indulgence of the court. I
have lost my sleep for the last few nights. I--I----"

The senior judge had half-risen, his wig awry, his hands gripping
the arms of the chair. "Clear the court! It is the fever!" he cried.

There was a stampede of the unoccupied in the back of the room. The
others in the court reached for their hats and drew away, leaving the
prosecutor alone. He smiled faintly. "No, your Honor," he said. "It
is over now. It was a touch of faintness; nothing more."

"With the consent of counsel I will adjourn the case."

The face of the prosecutor hardened; he set his jaw doggedly, he
regained his feet with a sort of spring. The judges slipped back
deeper into their seats; the elder wiped his brow and puffed.

"We will go on," said the attorney, in a calmer voice. "The testimony
is practically exhausted. I have to confess that I have been somewhat
disappointed in the witnesses, but I submit the case on the evidence
without argument."

It was plain that the people's representative was not at his best
that morning. The trial was hurried on, the lawyer for the defence
insisting principally that, as the complainant had fled from the
scene of the attempted robbery without looking back, he could not
possibly swear that the man in the prisoner's dock was the one who
had held his bridle. Was it not at least probable that the accused
had told the truth when he said he had been roused by the outcry of
the man on mule-back and had run down the road to see what the matter
was? Moreover, as no loss had been suffered, was it not a slender
ground for prosecution? The old judge looked back at the crucifix. The
illumination was passing. The knees were already in shadow. He was
an hour late for his lunch. He whispered with the other judges for
a moment, then smote the desk before him. "No evidence. The prisoner
is discharged. Adjourn the court," he exclaimed. And for once in the
history of Puerto Principe the law had been prompt. The accused, who
had been stolid and dull throughout the trial, now smiled cunningly to
himself, and saying no word to any one, but with a sidelong look at the
lawyers, left the building without loss of time, and after investing
a few coppers in bad brandy at the least inviting groggery in town,
disappeared down the road leading toward Minas. There were several
anxious inquiries at the house of Prosecutor Ramirez that evening,
but he was in his usual health. There was no occasion for alarm as
to the fever.

Two nights after this a couple of planters were stopped near the old
inn by a man of rough appearance, whose face was masked, and were
forced at the pistol's point to give up their watches and money. A
few nights later a man left town with money to discharge a bill. He
never reached his destination. In each case the criminals left no
trace. The environs of Puerto Principe were growing in ill-repute.

The prosecutor was leaving home on an evening when rain seemed
threatening. This was probably his reason for wearing a cloak,--a
protection seldom needed, except at night and in bad weather. It
was against his usual habit that he had drawn his cloak high about
his shoulders, so that his face was half-concealed, and this made it
the more difficult for one who was following to know if he were, or
were not, the man he sought. Convinced, after a little, that he was,
he hurried forward and placed his hand on his arm. The lawyer started
and uttered an exclamation. "Are you not Don Pablo Ramirez?" asked
the unknown.

The prosecutor looked long and searchingly at the frank-faced stranger,
then answered, shortly, "I am he."

"I thought so. Allow me: I am Captain Alfonso Garcia Estufa, of
the Engineer Corps. I come from Havana with authority from the
governor-general to confer with you about the brigands in this
province."

"Ah, indeed! You are welcome, señor captain. I was about to make a
business call on a tenant in this street. May I ask if you will make my
house your own till I return? I shall be absent but a few moments. I
will go back with you and open the door. Enter, if you please. The
sherry is on the sideboard. Cigars you will find on the table. Call my
servant, if you require anything." Then, hurrying out once more, the
lawyer almost ran upon his errand. In a quarter of an hour he returned
and the two began their discussion over a decanter of choice Madeira.

"It still seems to me," said the young officer, after the talk had
been going on for some minutes, "that the bold policy is the better,
though we may need secrecy in certain cases, for these devils of
brigands smell powder a mile away. On my life, they do. I've dealt
with them in Pinar del Rio, and they tell me they are more slippery
and far-seeing, or far-smelling, in this province. They must have
confederates here in town."

"Confederates? Preposterous, señor! Why do you think that?"

"Oh, I've been investigating a little. Either the brigands here
are clever, or some man who is more clever has them in hand, and
knows enough not to mix with them,--some man who can persuade them,
or terrorize them, or shield them. Have you no conceit as to who in
this city is fitted for a chieftainship like that?"

"I? None."

"I had hoped you knew your fellow-citizens well enough to advise me
whom to watch. No? Then, at least, tell me where it would be best to
place my men."

"The trails toward Sibanicu."

"Trails? Sibanicu? Why, there's no travel in that quarter. The
robberies have happened between here and Minas."

"Exactly. So many have happened that the brigands must abandon it
henceforth. They know they are watched, and I'll warrant your coming
here, and the object of it, are already common talk among them."

"Humph!"

"People who are bound for the coast are beginning to go around already,
so as to avoid the Minas road. If our scamps are as clever as you
think, they will not be long in following."

"There is something in that, and I thank you for the hint. We will
meet again shortly. Meanwhile, pray study the situation."

"You are not going?"

"I cannot stop with you, señor, greatly as I should be pleased to do
so, for I have agreed to meet my lieutenants at the other end of the
town. Good-night."

"Good-night, then, if you will not stay. Tell me early what success
you have in the chase of our good citizens of Puerto Principe."

The captain left the house with a light and jaunty step, yet he looked
about him thoughtfully. He had not gone far when the night stillness
was broken by the crack of a fire-arm not ten paces away. A bullet cut
his hat. He turned quickly. Nobody was in sight. The air was thick
with mist, and nobody was stirring. "Scoundrel!" cried the officer,
shaking his fist at the darkness. "You shall pay dear for that--you
and your people. Do you hear?"

There was no answer. He walked on at a faster pace.

Before the sun was up next morning the captain and his men had
withdrawn from Puerto Principe. Few in the town knew that he had been
there. None knew whither he had gone.

It was nine o'clock on the night following the interview. A fitful
wind stirred the trees that densely shadowed the Minas road. From
a chink in the walls of a dilapidated house that stood back from
the highway a light shone faintly, but except for the sough of the
leaves and the whirring and lisping that betoken the wakefulness of
insect life there was no sound. None? What was that? Down the road,
from Nuevitas way, came a blowing and stamping of horses laboring
through mud. The crack of light still shone, and nothing moved along
the wayside. As the horses came nearer a lantern could be seen hanging
from the sheep-neck of the older one, and two voices could be heard in
talk,--such village gossip as farmers might exchange when the way was
tiresome. The horses plodded on till they were abreast of the house,
when there was a whistle; the crack of light widened, suddenly there
was a rush of feet, a torch was brandished, and brown hands fell upon
the bridles.

One of the riders cried out, flung up his arms, and begged for
mercy. They might take his master's money, if they would, but for
the sake of St. Isaac, St. Matthew, and St. John, let them spare
his life. The other horseman, tall, spare, wrapped in a cloak,
swung down from his saddle in a business-like way, addressed a
remark in a low tone to the brigands, took the lantern from the
neck of his neighbor's nag,--it was a fine, mettled black he rode
himself,--turned up the flap of his hat a little, only a little,
not enough to reveal his face, and proceeded to rifle the pockets
and saddle-bags of his amazed companion. The lantern and the torch
shone on six or eight as hang-dog faces as would be met in a day's
journey, and among them was one closely resembling the prisoner who
had been discharged on a trial two or three weeks before for lack of
evidence. The victim of this robbery having given up all he seemed
to possess was told to ride straight into town without word or halt,
else he would be shot, and a fierce stroke being given with the whip,
his horse was off at such a gallop that he had much ado to keep his
seat. The thieves heaped the saddle-bags and parcels into the middle
of the road and bent near, while the man in the cloak opened them and
examined their contents in the flickering light. A gust of wind made
the torch flare and put the lantern out. The cloaked man muttered an
oath, and had partly risen to his feet, when there came a sound that
caused him to stagger and hold his hands to his head as if in mortal
terror. It was a wailing voice, and it pleaded, "For the sake of the
Virgin, of Her Blessed Son, of the Holy Saint Peter, of the Good God,
pray for me. Pray for a sinner. Beg the good fathers at Nuevitas to
say a mass for the soul of Enrique Carillo."

The cloaked man groaned. The others crouched, shuddering, and their
eyes in the red torch-flame were the eyes of goblins. In another
moment a shock ran through the group, for another voice, clear and
stern, commanded, "As you value your lives, don't stir. Men, do not
fire unless I tell you."

A light flashed up, then another, and the bandits discovered themselves
in the centre of a ring formed by twenty men, with the young captain
in command. Resistance would have been foolish, flight impossible; yet,
as the captain stepped toward the brigand leader, the man in the cloak
attempted the foolish and impossible; he fired his pistol full at the
captain's head, flung the weapon after the bullet, missing his aim each
time, then started to run, upsetting one of the soldiers as he did so.

"Fire!" cried the captain.

Two musket-shots came upon the word. The tall man tumbled headlong. "It
is one the less to hang," exclaimed the officer, as he snatched a torch
from the hand of one of his men. He bent over the prostrate form:
the robber had been killed instantly. He withdrew the cloak from
the face and looked long without speaking. Finally he said, "I was
a better ghost than I supposed. These brigands will have to elect a
new leader, and Puerto Principe must have a new prosecuting attorney."

In the deserted inn, under the kitchen floor, were found the remains
of Enrique Carillo and several other victims of the robbers. And
it is said that on All Souls' eve their ghosts block the road and
beg all who pass to pray for them and to pay for a few masses. Most
importunate of all is the ghost of Pablo Ramirez.



IN THE PACIFIC


Finding of the Islands


One of the oldest legends of the Hawaiians relates to the finding
of their islands by Hawaiiloa, a great chief and great-grandson
of Kinilauamano, whose twelve sons became the founders of twelve
tribes. Guided by the Pleiades he sailed westward from America, or
northward from some other group,--doubtless the latter,--and so came
to these pleasant lands, to the largest of which he gave his own name,
while the lesser ones commemorate his children. In another tradition
the islands of Oahu and Molokai were the illegitimate children of two
of his descendants, who were wedded, but jealous of one another and
faithless. Still another folk-tale runs to the effect that an enormous
bird, at least as large as the American thunder-bird or the roc of
Arabia, paused in its flight across the sea and laid an egg which
floated on the water. The warmth of the ocean and the ardor of the sun
hatched the egg, and from it came the islands, which grew, in time,
to their present size, and ever increased in beauty. Some years after
they were found by a man and a woman who had voyaged from Kahiki in
a canoe, and liking the scenery and climate, they went ashore on the
eastern side of Hawaii, and remained there to become the progenitors
of the present race. It suggests the ark legend that this pair had in
their canoe two dogs, two swine, and two fowls, from which animals had
come all that were found running wild there a hundred years ago. The
people can never be thankful enough that these visitors differed from
Nuu in their lack of regard for the snakes, scorpions, centipedes,
tarantulas, and mosquitoes that are so common to tropic lands, for,
having neglected to import these afflictions, the islands got on
without them until recently. Mosquitoes were taken to Hawaii on an
American ship. The hogs and dogs are descendants of animals that
escaped from the wreck of the Spanish galleon Santo Iago in 1527.



Ancient Faiths of Hawaii


Hawaiians claim descent from the Cushites of Arabia, and in their
folk-lore they have the same agreement with the Jewish myths which
we find so strangely in other tribes that seem to have no relation
to one another. Like the Israelites, they believed in a first pair
that forfeited paradise by sinning, and were put out of it. Like
the Israelites, they built temples and places of worship. Like the
Israelites, they practised circumcision. Their priests and chiefs
were kin of the gods, and well may they have seemed so if it is true
that the kings of the islands were men whose height was nine feet,
and who flourished spears ten yards long. Even Kamehameha, who died
in 1819, and who was politically the greatest of these rulers, as he
established one government over all of the islands, is said to have
been a giant in strength.

Without compasses, guided only by sun and stars, the people made long
voyages in their canoes--vessels of a length of a hundred feet--and did
battle with other races, fighting with spears, slings, clubs, axes,
and knives, but not with bows or armor. Doubtless they exaggerate
their numbers and their heroism, and in the last great battle, by
which Kamehameha became ruler of the group, it may be that there
were not quite the sixteen thousand men he claimed to have when he
forced the troops of Oahu over the cliff of Nuuanu. The language of
Hawaii resembles the tongues spoken in the southern archipelagoes,
thereby bearing out the legend of early migrations. As, in the East,
we hear tales that seem to hark back to the lost Atlantis, so among
the Pacific tribes are faint beliefs in a continent in the greater
ocean that sank thousands of years ago, and of coral islands built on
its ruins that crumbled or were shaken down in their turn, albeit they
served their purpose as stepping-stones between the surviving groups.

The Columbus of Hawaii was Nanaula, a Polynesian chief, who reached
them in the sixth century, either blown upon them by gales or actuated
in a long search by love of adventure. He carried dogs, swine,
fowls, and seeds of food-plants, and for several centuries the people
increased, lived in comfort, and enjoyed the blessings of peace. Four
hundred years later a large emigration occurred from Samoa and the
Society group to these islands, and the new-comers proved to be the
stronger. Each island had its chief or chiefs until this century,
but their families had intermarried until a veritable aristocracy had
been set up, with a college of heraldry, if you please, that recorded
the ancestry brags of the Four Hundred. Captain Cook chanced on evil
days when his turn came to discover the islands again, for although
the people at first thought him to be the god Lono, they were so busy
hating each other that they had not time to extend as many courtesies
to him as they might have granted at some other period. When they
killed him he had incurred their wrath by his overbearing manner, his
contempt for their customs, and by trying to make prisoner of a chief
who was innocently pulling one of the ship's boats apart to get the
nails out. Juan Gaetano, a Spanish captain, sailing from Mexico to the
Spice Islands in 1555, is said to have discovered Hawaii, but he said
little about it. There are traditions of other white visitors likewise.

While Christian missionaries claimed to have worked the moral
regeneration of the islands, the Martin Luther of the group anticipated
them by half a year. Liholiho--that was his name--publicly kicked
the idols, burned the temples, ate from the dishes of women, and
defied the taboo. So soon as the natives discovered that the sea
did not rise nor the sky fall, they rejoiced exceeding, and when one
of the priests gathered an army and mutinied against the new order,
they vehemently suppressed him. Yet the gods whom this soldier-priest
defended are said to lament his fall in battle, and the south wind,
stirring the shrubbery about his grave, is often heard to sob. The
first missionaries were Yankees. They made some converts, acquired
real estate, their example and teaching in political and industrial
matters were profitably heeded, and peace and prosperity returned to
the islands. Catholic missionaries were forbidden by the government
to land until 1839, when they were put ashore under the guns of a
French man-of-war, and have remained in safety ever since.

The religious faith that white men drove from Hawaii, or think they
did, is based on the customary moral precepts, while the theogeny
comprehends a trinity, composed of Kane, who plans and who lives in
the east; Ku, who builds, and Lono, who directs. These three gods in
one, who had existed from the beginning, created light; next they
built the three heavens; they then made the earth, sun, moon, and
stars. The angels were spat from their mouths, and after the fruitless
or experimental creation of Welahilana and Owe, the chief god, Kane,
with his saliva, mixed with red earth, made the first man, Kumuhonua,
and from his rib took the first woman, Keolakuhonua. These parents of
the race were put into a beautiful garden, divided by three rivers that
had their source in a lake of living water, which would bring the dead
to life when sprinkled over them, and which was filled with fish that
fire could not destroy. This living water was found again, ages after,
by Kamapikai, who led some of the Hawaiians back to it that they might
bathe, and they emerged young, strong, and handsome; but from their
third voyage to the lake they never returned. In the garden stood
a bread-fruit tree and an apple tree, both taboo. Whether Kanaloa,
the rebellious angel, persuaded the first pair to pluck the forbidden
fruit, or whether he wrought their downfall in some other fashion,
we do not know; but he was angry because they refused to worship him,
and because the man whom he had created could neither rise nor speak;
so, in the form of a lizard, he went into the garden and beguiled the
pair. Kane sent a large white bird and drove them out. Of the three
sons of the parents of the race the elder slew the second, and in
the thirteenth generation came the deluge, from which Nuu was saved,
for at the command of Kane he built an ark, took refuge in it with his
family, and, with pairs of every species of bird, beast, and reptile,
was released by the gods after the water had gone down, and found
that his ark was resting on the top of Mauna Loa. The rainbow was the
stair by which Kane descended to him, and it was left in the sky as a
token of forgiveness. As the history proceeds we recognize the story
of Abraham, and of Joseph and his brethren, and the likeness to the
Bible narrative ceases after an account of the long wanderings and
troubles of the people in their search for the land set apart for
them by Kane,--a search in which they were led by two brothers.

It was only in the eleventh century that the priesthood became a power,
exalted itself above the kings, prescribed senseless ceremonials and
forms of worship, invented so many gods that they often forgot the
names of them, and devised the prohibition, or taboo, the meaning
of that word being "Obey or die." Among these gods none are more
curious than the stones of Kaloa beach, Ninole, Hawaii. The natives,
who believed that they had sex, and propagated, chose male specimens
for their household deities. In order to make sure whether or not they
were really gods, the stones were blessed in a temple, wrapped in a
dress, and taken to see a game of skill or strength. If the owner of
the god won he gave to the piece of stone the credit for his victory
and established it in his house; but if he lost, the stone was thrown
aside. If the believer wanted to make sure of finding a god he would
take a beach pebble of each sex, wrap the two in cloth, and put them
away for a time. When they were brought back to the light a smaller
pebble, the result of their union, was found with them. This grew,
like an animal, until it was of a size to be blessed by the priests and
formally declared to be a god. The original pebbles are of black trap,
compact lava, and white coral. Beside the gods there were spirits that
could be called from the grave by wizards, although this power rested
only with the strongest and most righteous of the class. The soul of a
living creature might also leave his body and exhibit itself to one at
a distance, as Margrave projected his luminous apparition in Bulwer's
"Strange Story."

It was the gods of the second rank, however, that seemed most busy
for good or mischief in human affairs: such gods as Pele, the spirit
of the volcanoes, with her five brothers and eight sisters who lived
in the flaming caverns of Kilauea; or as Kalaipahoa, poison-goddess
of Molokai, and her two sisters, who put a bane on the trees so deadly
that they rivalled the fabled Upas of Java, and birds fell lifeless as
they attempted to fly above them (a volcanic sulphur vent was probably
the origin of this tale); or, as Kuahana, who slew men for sport;
or, as Pohakaa, who rolled rocks down the mountains to scare and hurt
travellers; or, as the shark and lizard gods that lashed the sea into
storms and wrecked canoes. War gods of wood were carried in battle,
among them the fierce-looking image of Kalaipahoa, born in the van of
the army of Kamehameha, and made at a cost of many lives from one of
the trees poisoned by that goddess. Its fragments were divided among
his people after the king's death. Apropos of this figure, a gamester
had lost everything except a pig, which he did not dare to stake,
as it had been claimed for a sacrifice by a priest with a porkly
appetite. At the command of a deity, however, who appeared in his
dreams, he disregarded the taboo and wagered the pig next day. Being
successful in his play, he in thankfulness offered half of his gains
to the deity. This god appeared on a second night and told him that if
the king would make an idol of a certain wood growing near she would
breathe power into it, and would make the gambler her priest. So the
king ordered a tree to be cut. As the chips flew into the faces of
the choppers they fell dead. Others, covering their bodies with cloth
and their faces with leaves, managed to hew off a piece as large as
a child's body, and from this the statue was carved with daggers,
held at arm's-length; and Kalaipahoa means Dagger-cut. Another god
of the great king was Kaili, which was of wood with a head-dress of
yellow feathers. This image uttered yells of encouragement that could
be heard above the din of conflict.

Statues of the gods were kept in walled enclosures, sometimes four
or five acres in extent, within which stood the temples and altars of
sacrifice, and there the people read the fates, as did the Greek and
Roman soothsayers, in the shapes of clouds and the forms and colors of
entrails of birds or of pigs killed on the altars. Human sacrifices
were offered on important occasions, but always of men,--never of
women or children. If no criminals or prisoners were available,
the first gardener or fisherman was captured, knocked on the head,
and his body left to decay on the altar. Oil and holy water were
used to anoint the altar and sacred objects, and when a temple was
newly finished its altar was piled with the dead. There is a striking
universality among people in the brutal stage of development in this
practice of pacifying their deities by murder. When a king or high
priest offered a sacrifice of a foeman the butcher gouged the left eye
from the body and gave it to his superior, who pretended to eat it. If
a victim succeeded in escaping to a temple of refuge he was safe,
even though he had killed a king or slapped the chops of a wooden god.

All over the islands are natural monuments associated with instances
that prove the faith of the people in gods, fiends, spirits, and
heroes. At Mana Beach the "barking" or whistling of the sands under
the tread is held to be the wailing of buried Hawaiians, complaining
that they are disturbed. Here, too, dwells the ghost of the giant
Kamalimaloa, rising through the earth with spear and helmet at certain
seasons and seeking two beautiful girls who scorned him in life, and
whom he is doomed never to meet in death. Holes and caves that abound
in the lava--old craters, bubbles, and steam-vents--also have their
stories. On Kauai they show a series called Pele's Jumps, because when
the fire-goddess was driven from that island by the water-gods she
made three long steps in the soft crust before undertaking the final
leap that landed her on the slope of Kilauea. Each of these pits would
hold a hotel. Another chasm was made by pulling a monster turtle out
of his lair, while he slept, with the intent of eating him. This pit
is thousands of cubic yards in extent, and the turtle may be seen on
a neighboring mountain, turned to stone by the curses of the chief
from whom he tried to sneak away when he noticed that preparations
for cooking were forward. Near the famous Hanapepe Falls is the cave
of Makaopihi, variously regarded as a chief, a devil, and a god, who
took refuge here from his enemies, but every now and then showed his
contempt for them by going down the long slope that is still called
his slide,--a recreation that to an ordinary mortal would mean death.

It is curious, if not significant, that in the language of Tahiti,
which is related to that of these islands, Maui appears, not as a
place, but as a sun god who destroyed his enemies with a jaw-bone,
while the word hawaii means hell. Strange, indeed, that one of the
most heavenly corners of the earth should have taken on a name like
that. The volcanoes may have terrified the early comers to such a
degree that it seemed the only fitting one if they chanced to arrive
in the time of an eruption.



The Giant Gods


Gods and demi-gods as vast as their mountains are celebrated in the
traditionary chants of the Hawaiians. While the largest island in the
group seems to have been their favorite residence, it was the easiest
thing imaginable to move, since they had only to step on board of
their enchanted canoes and make a wish and they were at once wafted
to any port they desired. A few of them did not need any canoes:
they were of such height they could step from island to island,
and could wade through the deepest oceans without submerging their
heads. Kana would often straddle from Kauai to Oahu, like a colossus
of Rhodes, and when a king of Kahiki, who was keeper of the sun,
undertook to deprive the people of it, because of some slight, Kana
waded across the sea and forced that king to behave himself instanter;
then, having seen the light properly placed in the sky, he spread
his breech-clout over a few acres of volcano to dry, and took a nap
on a mile or so of lava bed. This deity had the power of compressing
himself into a small space, and likewise of pulling himself out to
any desired length, like an accordion, so that there was not water
in the eight seas deep enough to drown him.

And Maui, the demi-god, was even more tremendous in his bulk. Whales
were his playthings, and sharks were minnows beside him. He had to
swim in water that reached only to his waist, because there was no
deeper, and even then his head was circled by clouds. He had a wife
of an immensity comparable to his own. Once, while busily beating
out a piece of bark-cloth, the sun sank low before she had finished
her task. Like the excellent housewife that she was, she did not wish
the day to end on work unfinished, so, at her request, Maui reached
out into the west, seized the sun, without burning his fingers much,
pulled it back to noon and held it there for two or three hours while
the making of the cloth proceeded. Then it resumed its journey through
the heavens, and has kept excellent time ever since.



The First Fire


The demi-god Maui lived near Mauna Kea, and in roaming over that
mountain he often felt the chill that is in high places. It set him
wondering why the volcano gods had never given to men the secret
of fire, that so warmed and comforted one at night. To take it from
the craters was dangerous. One was liable to be stifled by sulphur,
blinded by dust, scalded by steam, and destroyed by lava, for the crust
was continually breaking and falling. The mud-hens, or bald coots,
had the secret, however, and when he came upon their little fires
in the woods, Maui hid among the trees and watched. Despite his vast
bulk, he was not observed, or was more probably mistaken for a hill,
for presently the mud-hens assembled in a glade, before his eyes, and
made a fire by rubbing dry sticks together. They cooked fish and roots
over the fire, and the savor of the banquet was so appetizing that
Maui could not resist the temptation: he reached out and confiscated
the dinner, and the mud-hens flew off crying.

His attempt to catch the hens and learn from them how to make fire
did not succeed until he had rolled himself in bark-cloth; for, so
disguised, and after patient waiting, he captured the mother hen. She
tried to deceive him, for she did not want the secret to leave her
family. She told him to rub taro stalks on the line of their spirals,
the twist being put there for that purpose. He tried it without effect,
and gave the old hen's neck a twist to make her tell the truth. She
finally showed him how to make sparks with old, dry chips, and he
let her go, but not until he had rubbed her head until it was raw,
to punish her delay and falsehoods. And to this day the head of this
bird is bare of feathers.



The Little People


Hawaiians believe in "little people" that live in deep woods and peep
and snicker at travellers who pass. This belief is thought to go back
to the earliest times, and to hint at the smallness of the original
Hawaiians, for one may take with a grain of salt these tales of the
giant size of their kings and fighters. The first "little people" were
grandchildren of Nuu, or Noah, and the big people who came after were
Samoans. While anybody may hear these fairies running and laughing,
only a native can see them. They are usually kind and helpful, and
it is their law that any work they undertake must be finished before
sunrise; for they dislike to be watched, and scuttle off to the woods
at dawn.

Pi, a Kauai farmer, wanted a ditch to carry water from the Waimea River
for the refreshment of his land near Kikiloa, and, having marked the
route, he ordered the menehune, as they call the little people, to do
the work. It would have been polite to ask rather than to command;
still, they did what was required of them, each oaf lugging a stone
to the river for the dam, which may be seen to this day. The hum and
bustle of the work were heard all night, and so pleased was the farmer,
when morning came and the ditch was built, that he set a feast for the
menehune on the next night, and it was gone at daybreak. There were
no tramps in Hawaii, so the menehune must have eaten it. Conceiving
that he had acquired what our ward statesmen call a "pull" with
these helpers, he planned an elaborate fish-pond and put them at
work again. He had staked off such an immense area that the little
people could not possibly finish it by morning. As light streaked
the east and the cocks crew they scampered away to the mountains,
dripping with sweat and angered at the man who had so abused their
willingness. And they could never be induced to work for him again.

Although of supernatural power themselves, the little people are
religious, and have built several houses to the gods. On the face of
the mountain wall, two thousand feet high, back of the leper settlement
at Molokai, is a ledge that can be reached neither from above nor
below, and on it stands a temple of their construction. In Pepeeko,
Hilo, the natives labored for a month in quarrying and dressing stone,
but when it was ready the elves built their temple in a night. So at
Kohala they formed a chain twelve miles long between the quarry and
the site, and, passing the blocks from hand to hand, finished the
great enclosure before sunrise.

Yet these fairies had a taste for mischief, and could be as active
in it as so many boys. When a child on Maui, Laka was so loved by
his father that he would travel many miles to buy a toy for him, and
hearing of a strange new plaything in Hawaii, the father sailed to
that island to get it. He never returned, for the natives killed him
and hid his skeleton in a cave. When Laka had come to man's estate he
began preparations for a voyage to that island, that he might either
find his father or know his fate, for of his death he did not learn
until long after. In these preparations he was oddly thwarted. Every
time he hewed down a tree for a canoe it was gone in the morning. Out
of patience, he resolved to catch the thieves. In order to make their
task especially hard, he dug a hole into which the tree fell, when he
had chopped it, so that his enemies would have to lift it out before
they could carry it away. Then, in the shadow, he waited. At midnight
a small humming and giggling were heard in the bushes and a company
of menehune stole out into the shine of the moon. They began to tug
at the fallen tree. Laka sprang upon them and captured two, the others
running away with shrill screams. Laka threatened to kill his prisoners
for the trouble they had made, but he did not really intend to hurt
them. Their tears and cries and the rapid beating of their hearts,
that he could feel as he held them under his arms, stirred his pity,
and he agreed to let them go if they would promise to assemble their
tribe, drag the tree to his canoe shed on the shore and fashion it
into a boat. This they promised so eagerly that he put them back on
the earth and laughed as they scampered into the thicket. True to
their promise, they dragged the tree to the ocean that very night,
and carved and hollowed it into the finest vessel to be seen on the
island; so, friendly relations being thus established, Laka set a
feast for them, which they ate in thankfulness and never troubled
him more. Whether he succeeded in the search for the parental bones,
or left his own to whiten on the same soil, is not recorded, but you
can see for yourself the hollow he dug for the tree, and his canoe
shed was standing after white men reached the group.



The Hawaiian Iliad


Kaupepee, who might have governed Molokai in the twelfth century, had
he not chosen war as his vocation, was a believer in home rule. He
did not like the immigrants who were swarming northward from Tahiti
and Samoa. Though they resembled his own race, to be sure, and
spoke a language he could understand, he regarded them as greedy
and revolutionary, and they worshipped strange gods and sometimes
misused the people among whom they had cast their fortunes. So
Kaupepee resigned his kingship to his brother, and became a fighter,
a devastator. With some hundreds of hardy men at arms and the finest
ships of the time, hewn from Oregon pines and Canada spruces that
had drifted to the islands, he bitterly harassed the other kingdoms,
dashing ashore at the principal towns in buccaneer fashion, laying
violent hands on their stores, capturing their handsomest women,
breaking the taboo in their temples, killing a dozen of their men,
then flying to his canoes again, hoisting his red sails, and putting
off before the astonished people knew exactly what had happened.

This prince had fortified himself in quite a modern fashion at Haupu,
in his native kingdom. From the land side the tract was reached
only by a narrow dike which he had walled across with lava blocks,
a tunnel beneath this obstruction affording the only exit toward the
mountains. On the ocean front he had also built his forts of stone,
although the sea boiled five hundred feet below and the plateau ended
in an almost sheer precipice. Deep ravines on either side of the
stronghold bent around it to the rocky neck, thus making the place
almost an island. In these ravines were narrow paths by which his
people descended to their boats, secreted on the dark and winding
waters or hoisted on the rocks. This was the Troy of the Pacific;
Kaupepee was the Paris, and here he brought his Helen, who was Hina,
the most beautiful woman of her day, and the wife of a chief in
Hawaii. Kaupepee, encouraged by his oracles, inflamed by reports of
the woman's charm, had been lurking along the coast for some time,
watching for his opportunity. It came when Hina ventured into the
sea to bathe on a moonlight evening. Kaupepee, dashing from his
concealment, intercepted her escape, shouted to his men who were
in waiting behind a wooded point, and while the woman's friends and
attendants fled shrieking to the shore, he lifted her into his canoe,
paddled away to his double barge a half mile out, placed his lovely
captive in a shelter on board, and began the return voyage. The drum
could be heard in the village rousing the people, and lights twinkled
among the trees, showing that a pursuit was intended. In vain. The
dusky Menelaus may have put to sea, but he never appeared in view of
the flying ships. During the two days occupied in the run to Molokai
the prisoner refused food, and begged to be put to death. She was
assured that no harm was intended to her. On arriving at the fort of
her captor she was surprised by the appearance of women who had been
stolen from her villages before, and who were now to be her maids; nor
could she restrain an exclamation of pleasure when she was ushered into
what for the next eighteen years was to be her home. It was hung and
carpeted with decorated mats; its wooden frame was brightly painted,
festooned with flowers, and friezed with shells; couches of sea-grass
were overspread with cloth beaten from palm fibre; heavy curtains hung
at the doors; ranged on shelves were ornaments and carved calabashes,
while there was a profuse array of feathered cloaks and other modish
millinery and raiment.

All, from Kaupepee to the humblest soldier, had paid the respect to
her that was the due of a queen. She was told that she could enjoy
a certain amount of liberty, and if she suffered from her slight
captivity she was asked what might be thought of her new lord whose
heart she had absolutely in her keeping, and who was therefore less
free than she. This pretty speech and the really kind treatment she
had received, together with a hearty and needed meal of fruit, fish,
potatoes, and poi, caused her to look on her situation with less of
despair. She belonged to a simple race, whose moral code was different
from ours; she was more luxuriously surrounded than she had ever been
before; Kaupepee was bold and handsome; he was, moreover, strangely
gentle in her presence, thoughtful of her comfort, and--well, she
fell out of love with her old husband and in love with the new.

Matters were not so very dull while the war lord was away on his
forays. A considerable populace had been drawn to Haupu, and there
were dances and feasts, games, excursions, trials at arms, races, and
swimming matches, in which Hina shared when it pleased her. Reservoirs
for water, storehouses for food, and parks of ammunition were also to
be established, for none could tell when the fort might be attacked. A
long time passed before it was besieged. That time might never have
come had not Hina left at home two sons with long memories. For
years, as they approached manhood, they devoted themselves to rousing
the people of all the islands and preparing a navy that should be
invincible. Kaupepee kept himself informed of these measures, and now
and again discouraged them by swooping on their shipyards, destroying
their craft, and running off with a priest or two for a sacrifice. This
kind of thing merely hastened his punishment, and in time ten thousand
soldiers in two thousand boats were sighted from the battlements
of Haupu. A land force was sent to attack the stronghold from the
hills. Kaupepee's brother could not prevent this. He was allowed to
remain neutral. He foresaw the inevitable. When he implored the chief
to give up Hina, save himself and his warriors, and agree to a future
peace, Kaupepee would not listen. He had a thousand men, well armed,
and his enemies had an almost life-long hate to gratify. "If my day
has come," he said, "let it be as the gods will. When the battle is
over, look for me on the walls. I shall be there among the dead." The
king went away with bowed head, for he knew he should never see the
defender of Molokai again.

Early in the morning the fleet put out from its harborage, where
the gods had been invoked and the priests had declared the omens
kindly. The mother of Hina stood in the prow of one of the first
canoes, her white hair blowing about her head in snaky folds,
her black eyes glittering. A fire burned before her on an altar of
stone, and on this she threw oils and gums that yielded a fragrant
smoke. As the walls of Haupu came in sight, bristling with spears,
she began a battle-song, which her warriors took up, crew by crew,
until the mighty chant echoed from the crags and every heart thrilled
with the hope of conflict. As the boats advanced almost within reach
of the slings from the citadel, the land army was seen advancing
over the mountains far in the distance. Haupu would be beleaguered
shortly. Kaupepee gathered his people around him, told of the odds
against them, and confessed that the end might be defeat, adding that
if there was one whose heart failed him the gates were open and he
could leave, freely, with the good-will of all who stayed.

Not a man moved. With one cry of "Close the gates!" they declared
for death, if so be that the gods were against them. The chief smiled
and prepared for the defence. Some cried that the shore was crowded
with enemies. Kaupepee replied, in Spartan phrase, "Our spears will
be the less likely to miss." A messenger arrived offering terms if
Hina were given up. The answer was, "She is here. Come and take her."

The land force had been making a demonstration against the narrow
bridge of rock that led to the fortress, and had succeeded so well,
according to a prearranged plan, that almost the entire garrison had
crossed the plateau to that side, when shouts of triumph arose from
the ravines. The enemy had entered them and was smashing the boats
of Kaupepee to fragments. That cry of defiance was mis-timed. In a
few moments a thunderous roar was heard that echoed through the abyss
and paralyzed the hands of those who were attacking the gates. The men
who had run to the walls, on hearing the shouts below, had let loose,
into the depths, a deadly avalanche of earth, rocks, and timber. When
the dust of it had drifted out, scores, hundreds, of dead and dying
were seen half-buried in the fallen mass. Armed with spears, knives,
and axes, a little company sprang over the parapet, and, running down
the narrow trail to the bottom, despatched the survivors,--all save a
few who swam to the reserve boats, and six who were carried up to the
fort for sacrifice. One majestic chief, who had led this attack from
the sea, avoided knives and missiles and drew away in safety with the
other few who escaped. He was one of the sons of Hina. "He is brave;
I am glad he remains unharmed," said Kaupepee.

For several days the siege went on, the men within the defences taking
heart from this first success, that had cost the enemy two thousand
men. The sea approach was abandoned, and now that Kaupepee's boats were
destroyed or injured, so that he could not get away, the assailants
concentrated their efforts on the landward side. They had devised a
movable wall of wood, heavily braced, like that used by the Romans and
Assyrians in their military operations. Foot by foot they gained the
isthmus and slowly crossed it, those immediately behind this defence
being protected from the slings and javelins of the garrison,--that
reached those at a greater distance, however. On a rainy night they
pushed this wall against the gates, found the entrance to the tunnel,
and at dawn were ready for the final assault. It began with a downpour
of spears and stones, before which it was impossible to stand. Then
the heavy slab that masked the inner door to the tunnel was lifted,
and in another minute five thousand men were pouring over the walls
and through the passage. Not one man attempted flight. Contesting
every inch of ground and fighting hand to hand, the men of Molokai
retired before the invaders. There was an incessant din of weapons
and voices. At last, the garrison--the fifty who were left of it--and
their chief were crowded to the temple in the centre of the plain. One
of the besieging party scrambled to the roof and set it afire with a
torch. The fated fifty rushed forth only to hurl themselves against the
hedge of weapons about them. Kaupepee was transfixed by a spear. With
his last strength he aimed his javelin at the breast of a tall young
chief who suddenly appeared before him,--aimed, but did not throw;
for he recognized in the face of the man before him the features
of the woman he loved,--Hina. The javelin fell at his side and he
tumbled upon the earth, never to rise again. Every man in Haupu was
killed, and its walls were levelled: Hina was found in her cottage,
and although she bewailed the death of her lover, she rejoiced in
her restoration to her mother and her sons.



The Hawaiian Orpheus and Eurydice


Upon the slopes of Hualalai, just under the clouds and among the
fragrant sandal-woods, lived Hana and her son, Hiku. They made their
living by beating bark into cloth, which the woman took to the coast to
swap for implements, for sea food, for sharp shells for scraping the
bark, and she always went alone, leaving Hiku on the mountain to talk
to the animals, to paint pictures on the cloth, and to play on curious
instruments he had made from gourds, reeds, and fibre, for he could
play music that made the birds stop in their flight to listen. The
mother loved the son so much that she wished to keep him by her so
long as she lived, and that was why she never let him go with her to
the shore. She believed that if he visited the towns and tasted the
joys of surf-riding, shared in the games of the athletes, and drank
the beer they brewed down there, and especially if he saw the pretty
girls, he would never go back to his mountain home. And though Hiku
wondered what life was among the people on the shore, he was obedient
and not ill content until he had passed his eighteenth birthday.

As he sat one evening with eyes fixed on the far-off sea, sparkling
under the moon, the wind brought the hoarse call of the surf and a
faint sound of hula drums, and a sudden impulse came upon him to see
the world for himself. He called to his mother that he was going down
the mountain. She tried with tears and prayers and warnings to stay
him, but his resolution was taken, and off he went, saying that he
would be back again some day. Though he was as green as grass and
untaught in the practices of the settlements, Hiku was a fellow of
parts. He was not long in making a place for himself in society, and
his first proceeding was to tumble head over heels in love. His flame
was Kawelu. She received him graciously, flung wreaths of flower petals
about his neck in the pretty fashion of her people when he called,
as he did every day from sunrise until dark; and when he could row a
canoe and had learned how to swim and to coast over the breakers in
her company, he had gained paradise.

The day came, however, when these pleasures palled upon him, when he
wondered if his mother had kept on sorrowing, when he had a longing
to see his old home, to breathe the pure, cool air of the hills. He
was an impulsive fellow, so he kissed Kawelu and told her that he
must go away for a while; that she could not go with him, because his
mother would probably dislike her. He had not walked a mile before
he discovered that Kawelu was following secretly. He increased his
speed, yet still she followed, and presently this persistence on her
part began to anger him. The one thing he had taken from home was a
magic staff that would speak when questions were put to it, and the
youth now asked what could be done to turn the girl homeward. It told
him to order vines to spring so thickly behind him that she could not
break through, and they so sprang at his command. He could no longer
see Kawelu when he looked back, though he heard her voice calling
softly, reproachfully, and when he reached home, to the joy of his
mother, he knew that the girl must have given up the pursuit, as she
really had; for, discouraged by the steepness of the mountain and
the ever-increasing tangle of vegetation, she returned to her village.

This seeming indifference on the part of the young mountaineer was
more than she could bear. She lost interest in sports and work, fell
into a lovesickness, and though her father, the chief, sacrificed
many black pigs on her behalf, it was of no use,--she died of a
broken heart. They wrapped her body in the finest cloth, beaten by
the widow and her son, and placed it, with many lamentations, in a
burial cave hard by. Such was the dismal news that Hana took to her
son after she had been to the settlement to sell a batch of fabric,
and it filled Hiku with consternation, for he had intended to go back
for the girl as soon as he could reconcile his mother to the idea of
a daughter-in-law. He realized what a fool and a brute he had been,
and it was of little use for him to tear out his hair and roll upon
the ground in the way he did. He left his work and wandered among the
lava fields, muttering to himself, gesturing wildly, and beating his
breast. Finally it occurred to him to ask his staff how he could
amend for his wrong-doing, and was told there was but one way:
to rescue the girl from the place of the dead, in the pit of Milu,
on the other side of the island.

He lost no time in obeying this oracle, and on arriving at the wild and
lonely spot he made a swing of morning-glory vine, which here grows
very long, and let himself down, having first smeared himself with
rancid grease to make the shades believe he was dead. Thousands of
spirits were chasing butterflies and lizards in the twilight gloom of
the place or lying under trees. He despaired of being able to discover
the spirit of Kawelu. But she had seen him; she hurried to him; she
clasped him in a fond embrace; for she had forgiven his wrong conduct,
and now she was asking him, sympathetically, how he had died. He evaded
an answer, but bestowed on her a thousand endearments, the while he
was slowly working his way up the vine, in which he affected to be
merely swinging; then, just as she began to show alarm at having been
taken so far from her new home, he clapped a cocoanut shell over her
head and had her safe, a prisoner.

With the soul enclosed in the shell, he tramped back to her home,
living on wild fruits and yams on the way, and on poi that was offered
to him by strangers whom he met. The chief received him and his news
joyfully, but he did not know how to restore a soul to a body until
his oldest priest took the case in hand. Kawelu's corpse was taken
from the tomb, its shiny wrappings were removed and incantations were
performed about it. Then the priest raised a toe-nail, took the soul
from the shell and pressed it under the nail, working it upward with
both hands. It passed the ankle and knee with difficulty, but was
finally pushed into place in the heart. Kawelu gasped, opened her
eyes, sat up, embraced Hiku, and the people cried that their princess
was alive again. There was a great pounding of drums, much singing,
dancing, and feasting; every one wore wreaths, and Hiku was praised
without stint for his love and daring. The lovers were married, never
to part again. Kawelu remembered nothing of what had happened to her
after she was turned back by the vines on the mountain, and did not
know that her soul had been among the dead. And though he might have
taken a dozen wives when he succeeded his father-in-law as chief,
Hiku loved Kawelu so well that he never thought of taking even a
second helpmate. He brought his mother from her solitary hut on the
mountain, and she and the bride became very fond of one another. So
all the days of Hiku and Kawelu thereafter were days of happiness.



The Rebellion of Kamiole


In the year 1170, or thereabout, Kanipahu was king of Hawaii. He
was of Samoan origin, grandson of the builder of that temple whose
ruins are still to be seen at Puepa in walls over eight hundred feet
around, twenty-six feet high, and eight feet thick at the top. It is
recorded that the stone for this construction was passed from hand
to hand by a line of men reaching all the way to Niuli, a matter of
nine miles. Despite the improvements in building and other arts that
had come in with the Samoans, the Normans of this Pacific Britain;
despite the centralizing of power that enabled them to break down the
oppressions of petty lords; despite the satisfaction of the common
people, the aristocracy was restive, and sought constantly for excuses
to rouse their subjects against the new domination. Wikookoo, head
of King Kanipahu's army, having eloped with the sister of Kamiole,
a disaffected chief, the latter burst in upon the king's privacy soon
after with a demand for vengeance. He had met the woman near the king's
house and had struck her dead, as he supposed, that she might not be
"degraded" by bearing children to a plebeian immigrant.

The king was a just and patient man, and kept his temper, in spite
of the visitor's harshness, not only to Wikookoo but to all his
people. Though he could have ordered him to be slain, he yielded
to his general's demand for permission to fight a duel. The pair
faced each other at fifty feet, hurled two spears without effect,
then closed with javelins. Wikookoo was hurt, and deeming that honor
was satisfied the king ordered the fight to cease. Kamiole gave no
heed to his words. He had a tiger's thirst for blood. Like a flash he
leaped upon the fallen man and pounded the weapon into his heart. This
rebellion against the king and the savagery of the killing caused an
outcry of rage and horror. The murderer's chance was desperate. "Face
down!" commanded the king. This was the command to put the offender
to death. A dozen sprang to execute the order. Kamiole tugged the
javelin out of his foeman's body and hurled it at the king. It wounded
a young man, who had flung himself in front of his liege, and in the
confusion of the moment Kamiole escaped, running like a deer through
a shower of stones and darts, gaining his boat and sailing away for
his native state of Kau.

Blown with pride in his exploit, the rebel set about the raising of an
army to drive the new people from the island. It needed only a leader,
like him, to urge disaffection into revolt, and not many weeks after
nearly all Hawaii was on the march against the king. Deserted by
thousands of his followers, and being a man of peace, albeit having
no lack of courage, the king withdrew to the island of Molokai and
became a simple farmer among a strange people. He was nearly seven
feet in height,--a common stature among men of the first families
in that day,--and the neighbors marked him; but he stooped his
shoulders and worked hard; so, ere long, his appearance was not
accounted strange. Kamiole was now the first man in Hawaii. He was
not a reformer. Consumed with pride, arrogant, brutal, brooking no
opposition, he made enemies day by day. Only because the people had
had enough of war did they endure in silence, and hope for an illness
or an accident to remove the now hateful tyrant.

Unknown to Kamiole, the sister he had struck down survived his
assault, and bore a daughter to the late Wikookoo, a pretty maid,
who, in good time, married the son of the exiled king, a quiet,
dreamy youth, who lived apart from his fellows in the interior of
Hawaii, finding his company and his employ in the woods and on the
vast mountain slopes. Eighteen years had passed when this prince was
rudely waked from his idyllic life. An old priest, who alone knew the
hiding-places of the king and his son, had tried to rouse the former
to reassert his rule. The king welcomed him and wished success to
the movement for the overthrow of Kamiole, but he refused command
of his old army,--refused to return to Hawaii. "I am old," said he,
"and so bent that I can no longer look over the heads of my people,
as becomes a king. I am no longer served with dainties; in the noon
heat no servant fans me or brings water; I live in a hut and fare
on coarse food; but, old friend, I eat with an appetite, I sleep
like a tired and honest man; I have forgotten ceremony and care,
and I am happy. Not to be king of all these islands, and the islands
of our fathers likewise, would I return. See how blue the sky is,
how fresh the trees and grass! What music in the roll of the ocean
and in the birds' songs! What sweetness in the flowers!"

Wondering at this change in his former master, the priest dropped
his hands in a gesture of despair. "Then our cause is lost," said he.

"Not so," answered the king. "Go to my son. Tell him his father wishes
him to reign. Untried as he is, he has my strength; he is resolute,
he is wise, he loves justice. He will head your men of war."

The prince was found to be a willing leader. The arrogance of Kamiole,
the decreasing liberties of the people, the thought that the dictator
had attempted the lives of his father and his wife's parents, stirred
in him resolves of vengeance. The fickle masses that eighteen years
before had overturned his dynasty now gathered under his standard, and
battle was offered at Anehomaloo. Kamiole had the fewer men, but the
better position, being defended in front by a stone wall five feet high
that stretched across the plain, and at the back by a gorge too deep
and steep, as he imagined, for an enemy to cross. The fight was fierce
and long, and thousands fell on both sides. The prince was cautious,
however, for he was waiting the result of a secret move: an assault on
the rear of his foe by a large body of spearmen who were making a long
detour to prevent detection of this manoeuvre. Presently he saw the
stir and shimmer of arms on the hill beyond the chasm, and ordering
a general charge on Kamiole, kept him so occupied for a quarter of
an hour that the advance from the hill was not observed until the
detachment had descended the ravine, clambered up again, and was now
rushing upon the doomed army. Penned between two forces, Kamiole's
men were beaten to the earth, and the battle ended in a massacre.

When the successful movement was made across the ravine the prince
was astonished to see at the head of his troops in the distance
a stranger,--a tall, weathered, sinewy man with a mass of white
beard and hair that flowed over his chest and shoulders,--who hewed
a passage through the battling legion with a club that few men could
have lifted. After the fight this stranger stood long before the fallen
Kamiole and looked into his fading eyes. As the prince hastened to
the dying tyrant, his princess followed with a calabash of water;
for in those times women accompanied their husbands and brothers to
the field, waiting at a little distance to dress their wounds and
supply food and drink. His stature had enabled her to keep him in
sight, and she was now about to offer the drink to him, when Kamiole,
though he had never before seen his niece, appeared to recognize her
voice, and faintly exclaimed, "Iola!"

"My mother's name!" cried the princess, in surprise. "Then you must be
her brother." Dropping on her knees at his side, she gave the water
to Kamiole. The dying man extended his hands toward her and drew a
deep breath,--his last.

The prince, who had been smiling at this unusual mercy to an enemy,
now looked up and caught the eye of the stranger fixed intently upon
him. "By whose arm did Kamiole fall?" he asked.

"By mine," replied the white-haired man.

"Are you a god?" asked the prince, a sense of awe creeping over him
as he noted the strength and dignity of this form.

"I am Kanipahu,--your father."

And among the heaped dead the two embraced. Having seen his son
enthroned and peace restored, the old king refused all offers and
persuasions, and went back to Molokai to end his days in peace as a
simple farmer. The prince, whose name was Kalapana, and who was the
ancestor of the great Kamehameha, reigned tranquilly and died lamented.



The Japanese Sword


More than two centuries before Columbus reached America on its Atlantic
side a Japanese junk visited the western shore. The tradition is too
vague to specify whether the navigators attempted a landing or not,
but as their boat was small and could not have been provisioned for a
voyage of thousands of miles, it is probable that they took on fresh
supplies of food and water before they put about and started on the
homeward journey. They never saw Japan again, for their vessel went
to wreck on Maui, whose king personally rescued five of them,--three
men and two women. This was the second appearance in the Hawaiian
islands of "white people with shining eyes." When the captain of the
junk reached the shore he still carried the keen sword of steel he had
girded on in the expectation of an attack from savages. There was no
attack. He and his mates were received with kindness, and provided with
houses, although they shocked the multitude by their ignorance of the
taboo, the men and women eating from the same dishes. It was explained
that their gods were poor, half-enlightened creatures, and that it was
as well to let them alone until they should learn truth and manners.

In time these castaways took Mauians to husband and wife, the
captain's sister marrying the king himself, but the captain was held in
superstitious reverence because of his sword. The natives had daggers,
knives, axes, adzes, hammers, and spears of stone, bone, shark teeth,
and fire-hardened wood, but metals were unknown to them, and this long,
glittering blade, that cut a javelin stem as the javelin would crack
a rib, was a daily wonder. It was the common belief on that island
that whoever wielded the weapon would win a victory, though his
enemies should be thousands in number. This belief was comforting,
but it did not last, for Kalaunui, king of Hawaii, undertook in the
year 1260 the subjugation of the whole group, and although his force
was defeated with great slaughter on Kauai, he had subdued Maui,
Oahu, and Molokai, for the time being, with his fleet of two thousand
well-manned, well-armed canoes.

In the great fight on Maui the Japanese warrior fought to the last,
but was struck down by a Hawaiian captain, one Kaulu, who buried the
precious sword on the spot where he had taken it, and recovered it
by starlight. Knowing that the king would demand it if it were seen,
he gave it in charge of his mother Waahia, a seer of such renown and
verity that she accompanied the army at the request of its leaders. The
old woman concealed the blade in the hollow of a rock. Unhappily for
her cause, she had not foreseen the result of this campaign, for the
expedition met its Waterloo on the shores of Kauai, hundreds of the
men being drowned or slain by slings and javelins before a landing
could be made. King Kalaunui was made prisoner, the kings of Maui,
Oahu, and Molokai, whom he had taken with him as hostages for the
surrender of their islands when he should return, were released, and
a remnant of the invading force, under lead of Kaulu, returned. The
queen was filled with wrath at the failure of this expedition, and
rebuked Kaulu for treachery and cowardice,--Kaulu, who had stood by
his lord to the moment of his capture, and who had wrested the magic
sword from its owner.

Burning under this charge, he sought his mother and asked what
he should do to disprove it. She replied that he should not only
be cleared by the king himself, but he should marry the king's
daughter. The queen began at once to negotiate for the release of her
husband. That monarch was confined in a hut, surrounded by a stone
wall and strongly guarded, but was, nevertheless, treated with the
respect and distinction worthy of the Napoleon that he was. A fleet
of canoes with many spears was offered in exchange; but, with the
spoils of battle still in their possession, the victors only smiled
at this. Next came an offer of twenty feather cloaks, with stone axes,
ivory, and whalebone; but this, too, was rejected. A third proposition
by the queen was that the ruler of Kauai should wed her daughter and
agree to a perpetual peace. This came to nothing. Several attempts
were made to renew the war, but they fell flat, for the experience had
been too bitter and the people refused. Three years thus passed,--a
time sufficient to convince the queen of her political weakness. She
had almost resigned hope when old Waahia sought an audience at court,
and said, when she had received permission to break the taboo and speak
before the councillors, that she, and she alone, could rescue the king,
but she would not undertake this unless the chiefs would promise to
grant her request, whatever it might be, on their lord's return.

This pledge they gave with the understanding that it was not to affect
life or sovereignty or possessions, and the seer left for Kauai, with
but a single oarsman, in the morning. She arrived while the new-year
festivities were in progress, and everybody was in good-humor. There
were music, dancing, chanting of poems and traditions, feasting, and
much swigging of spirits, not to speak of indulgences that would have
shocked civilization. Unannounced, a weird-like, commanding figure,
Waahia sought the presence of the court. She had come, she said, to
make a final offer for the release of the royal prisoner: the offer
of a sword that flashed like fire, that was harder than stone, that
broke spears like reeds, that gave to its owner supreme fortune and
supreme command. The fame of the bright knife had gone abroad ere this,
and an offer had at last been made that carried persuasion with it. The
liberty of the king was promised when it should be brought. But first
she wished the prisoner's assurance that on his return he would give
his daughter in marriage to her son, since the young people loved
each other, and the marriage would also remove the disgrace that the
queen had angrily tried to fix upon Kaulu.

This was agreed to, and a few days later the old woman reappeared at
the palace with the splendid weapon,--one that would still be splendid,
for such blades are not made nowadays,--and with general rejoicing
at the possession of this wonder, the chiefs liberated Kalaunui, and
he returned to Hawaii, cured of ambition for leadership and military
glory. His daughter was married to Kaulu, captain of the royal guard,
and kings were their descendants. For many years the glittering prize
remained with the ruling house of Kauai, but its virtue had fled when
the invincible Kamehameha undertook the conquest of the islands and
their union under a single king, for he succeeded in that enterprise,
as Kalaunui had not.



Lo-Lale's Lament


Lo-Lale, a prince of Oahu in the fifteenth century, took no joy in
the sea after the girl had been drowned in it who was betrothed to
him. Retiring inland, he led a quiet, thoughtful life, to the regret
of those who had looked to see him show some fitness in leadership,
for as youth verged toward middle age he was repeatedly besought
to marry, that his princely line might be continued. Tired of these
importunities, and possibly not averse to the lightening of his spirit,
he consented that a wife should be sought for him, and appointed his
handsome, dashing cousin, Kalamakua, as his agent in the choice. The
cousin sailed at once for Maui, where rumor said a young woman of
rare beauty was living at the court, whose hand had been sought by
a dozen chiefs. On arriving near the shore of the king's domain
the messenger and his rowers were startled by the uprising from
the waves of a laughing, handsome face, and behold! the woman who
introduced herself in this unusual fashion was the one they sought:
Kelea, the king's sister. She had been surf-riding on her board, and
in the delight of swimming had ventured farther from shore than usual.

The captain of the canoe helped this dusky Venus to rise completely
from the sea, and as she did not wish to return at once, he put his
boat at her service for the exhilarating and risky sport of coasting
the breakers; but putting far out to meet a wave of uncommon size,
they were struck by a squall and blown so far that they found it
easier to put in for shelter near the home of Lo-Lale than to return
to Maui. The storm, the spray, the chilling gusts, compelled Kelea
to sit close in the shelter of Kalamakua's sturdy form. He levied on
the scant draperies of his crew for cloth to keep her warm, and all
the men dined scantily that she might be fed. It is not strange that
a friendship was born on that voyage between the two people who had
been so oddly introduced. Lo-Lale had never heard of John Alden and
Myles Standish, principally, no doubt, because they had not been
born, but it must be allowed in his behalf, or in hers, that he
had never seen the damsel whom he was courting thus by proxy. When
he did behold her he was vastly pleased, and as he appeared in all
the paraphernalia of his rank and instituted in her honor a series
of feasts and entertainments unparalleled in Oahu, the consent of
Kelea to a speedy marriage was obtained, a courteous notice to that
effect being sent to her relatives, who had mourned for her as lost
in the storm. He built a temple and adorned it with a statue as a
thank-offering for having blown so fair a bride to his domain. No
prettier compliment could be paid to a wife, even by a white man.

For a time Kelea was content. Lo-Lale was a kind husband, and he was
constantly studying to advance her happiness, but he was meditative and
silent; he loved the woody solitudes, while she was fond of company,
babble, sport, and especially of swimming and surf-riding. Presently
it was noticed that she laughed less. She did not welcome Lo-Lale
when he returned from his walks or his communings with Nature on
the hills. The voice of the sea was calling her,--and the voice
of Kalamakua. A separation had to come. It was without any spoken
bitterness. The husband wished her well, bestowed on her some parting
gifts, and sent her to the shore in a palanquin borne by four men and
attended by a guard of three hundred, as became her station. Kalamakua
was waiting on the beach,--Kalamakua, handsome, reckless, ardent. She
never returned to Maui. Though Lo-Lale resumed his old, still way
and kept his dignity and countenance before his people, his lament,
that has been preserved by the treasurers of island traditions for
more than four centuries, discovers a pang in his heart deeper than he
could or would have voiced when he parted from his wife. The English
version is by King Kalakaua:


    "Farewell, my partner on the lowland plains,
    On the waters of Pohakeo, above Kanehoa,
    On the dark mountain spur of Mauna-una!
    O, Lihue, she is gone!
    Sniff the sweet scent of the grass,
    The sweet scent of the wild vines
    That are twisted by Waikoloa,
    By the winds of Waiopua,
    My flower!
    As if a mote were in my eye.
    The pupil of my eye is troubled.
    Dimness covers my eyes. Woe is me!"



The Resurrections of Kaha


Kaha was granddaughter of the Wind and the Rain, whose home is still
among the vapory darks that settle in the valley of Manoa, back of
Honolulu, her remote ancestors being the mountain Akaaka and the
Cape Nalehuaakaaka. She was of such beauty that light played about
her when she bathed, a rosy light such as the setting sun paints on
eastern clouds, and an amber glow hovered above the roof that sheltered
her. From infancy she had been betrothed to Kauhi, a young chief whom
every one supposed to be worthy of her, because his parentage was high,
and he could name more grandfathers than he had toes and fingers. He
did not deserve this esteem, for he was not only cruel and jealous,
but spoiled, petulant, and thick-headed. His qualities were exhibited
on his very first meeting with his promised bride, for neither had
seen the other until reaching marriageable age. Two braggarts, who
were so ill formed and ugly that their boasts of winning ladies'
favor would have been taken by any one else for lies, declared,
in Kauhi's hearing, that they were lovers of Kaha, and they wore
wreaths of flowers which they said she had hung over their shoulders.

Setting his teeth with a vengeful scowl and wrenching a stout
branch from a tree, the prince strode over to the house of his
bride-to-be. She received him modestly and pleasantly, and her beauty
struck him into such an amazement that he could not at first find words
to express the charge he wished to make. At last, by turning his back,
he managed to speak his base and foolish thought. She, thinking this
a jest, at first made light of it, but when he faced her once more,
frowning this time, like a thunder-cloud, and brandishing the cudgel
above his head, she was filled with fear and could hardly keep her
feet. She denied the charge. She begged that he would tell the names
of her accusers that she might prove her innocence.

"You are fair to see and to hear, but you are as fickle as your
parents. I will have no such woman for a wife," shouted the chief,
lashing himself into a rage. She extended her arms appealingly. He
struck her on the temple, and she fell dead. He had gone but a mile or
so when her voice was heard in song behind him, and the fall of her
steps on the path. To his astonishment, she now appeared bearing no
mark of injury, save that the rough way had cut her feet, and again
she besought him to say on whose charge he had so foully wronged
her in his thought, and why he wished to kill her. His answer was
another blow, more savage than the first, and this time there was no
doubt that he left her dead. Yet, before he had gone another mile,
her lamenting song was heard; she came to him, and he struck her down
again. Five times this monster laid the defenceless girl a corpse,
and the last time he scraped a hole under the tough roots of a tree,
crowded her body into it, covered it with earth, and went on to
Waikiki without further interruption.

The owl-god had been Kaha's friend. After each stroke he had flown
to her, rubbed his head against the bruised and broken temple, and
restored her to life. To drag her from under the tangled roots was
beyond his strength, and he flapped away into the depths of the wood,
filled with sadness that such beauty had been lost to the world. But
it was not lost. The girl's spirit could not rest under the false
accusal that had caused her death. All bloody and disfigured, her
ghost presented itself before Mahana, a young warrior of the nearest
town, with whom she had in life exchanged a kind though casual word
or two, and understanding, through his own deep but unspoken love,
the reason for this visitation, he hurried after the phantom as it
drifted back to the tree. The disturbed earth and the splashes of
blood explained enough. He set to work vigorously, exhumed the body
while it was still warm, and holding it close to his breast, with
eyes fixed on the hurt but lovely face, he carried it to his home.

Once more the gods befriended her and restored Kaha to life. For many
days she was ill and weak, and throughout those days it was Mahana's
delight to serve her, to talk with her, to sit at her side, and hold
her hand. This life of love and tenderness was a new and delightful
one; yet she sorrowfully declared that she must become the wife of
Kauhi, because her parents had so intended. The lover was not content
with this. He made a visit to Kauhi, and in the course of their talk
he mentioned, as the merest matter of fact, the visit of the famous
beauty to his home. Kauhi pooh-poohed this. He was sure of the girl's
death. Mahana adroitly kept the conversation on this theme until Kauhi
lost his temper, confessed that he had killed Kaha for faithlessness,
and swore that the woman whom Mahana sheltered was a spirit or an
impostor. He would wager his life that it was so. The lover took the
wager. It was agreed that the loser should be roasted alive. A number
of chiefs, priests, and elderly men were assembled, and the girl was
brought into their presence. It was no spirit that bent the grass and
fixed on the quailing ruffian that look of soft reproach. No impostor
could boast such beauty. Kauhi tried to exonerate his conduct by
repeating the falsehoods of the two men who claimed to have received
her favors. They were dragged before the assembly, confronted by the
innocent Kaha, made confession, and were ordered to the ovens, where
Kauhi also went to his death, vaunting to the last. The lands and
fish-ponds of this chief, who had no owl-god to resurrect his ashes,
were, with general acclaim, awarded to Mahana, and as chief he ruled
happily for many years with the fair Kaha for his wife.



Hawaiian Ghosts


Hawaii has its "haunts" and "spooks," just as do some countries that
do not believe in such things. One of the spectres troubles a steep
slope near Lihue, Kauai. An obese and lazy chief ordered one of his
retainers to carry him to the top of the slope on his shoulders. It
was a toilsome climb, the day was hot, hence it is no wonder that
just before he gained the summit the man staggered, fell, and sent
his dignified and indignant lord sprawling on the rocks. This was a
fatal misstep, for the chief ran the poor fellow through with his
spear. And the ghost possibly laments because it did not drop its
burden sooner and with more emphasis.

Another place that the natives avoid is the Sugar Loaf on Wailua
River, Kauai. Hungry robbers broke a taboo and ate some bananas that
had been consecrated to a local god, Kamalau. Missing the fruit,
the deity turned himself into the rock known as the Sugar Loaf, which
is sixty feet high, that he might watch his plantation without being
identified. The thieves noticed the rock, however, could not recall
that it had been there on the day before, and suspecting something kept
away. The sister of the god, believing him to be lost, leaped into
the river and became a stone herself. And so, having rid themselves
of the flesh, these two are free to wander in the spirit.

Another deity that is occasionally seen is Kamehameha's large war god,
from his temple in Hawaii, that even in his lifetime would leave its
pedestal and thrash among the trees like a lost comet.

At Honuapo, Hawaii, is the rock Kaverohea, jutting into the sea, where
at night a murdered wife calls to her jealous husband, assuring him
of her love and innocence. The voice is oftenest heard when a great
disaster is at hand: war, storm, earthquake, the death of a chief,
or a season of famine.



The Three Wives of Laa


Laa, a young man of distinguished family, who had gone to Raiatea
in his boyhood, returned a number of years after to visit his
foster-father, Moikeha, then chief of Kauai. The boats that were sent
for him were painted yellow, the royal color, and Laa was invested in a
feather robe that had cost a hundred people a year of labor, and caused
the killing of at least ten thousand birds, since the mamo had but one
yellow feather under each wing. Hawaiian millinery was, therefore, as
cruel a business as it became in America several centuries later. When
this favorite scion landed his path was strewn with flowers, and the
feasts in his honor lasted for a month. He had agreed to go back to
Raiatea, for he had been accepted there as heir-apparent, yet it
was thought a pity that his line should cease in his native land;
and while he felt that for state reasons he must take a Raiatea
woman for his queen,--for the people there would never consent to
his carrying home a Hawaiian to help rule over them,--he cheerfully
consented to take a temporary wife during his stay in Kauai. His house
and grounds were, therefore, decorated, the nobility was assembled,
musicians and poets and dancers were engaged, and a great feast was
ordered, when a hitch arose over the choice of a bride. Each of the
three leading priests had a marriageable daughter of beauty and proud
descent. How were their claims to be settled? Easily enough, as it fell
out. Laa married all three on the same day, and before his departure
for Raiatea each wife on the same day presented a son to him. From
these three sons sprang the governing families of Oahu and Kauai.



The Misdoing of Kamapua


When a child was born to Olopana, a lord of Oahu, in the twelfth
century, he conceived a dislike to it, and freely alleged that his
brother was its father. Such as dared to speak ill of dignitaries, and
there were gossips in those days, as in all other, chuckled, at safe
distance, that if Olopana's suspicions were correct, the boy should
have somewhat of his--er--uncle's good looks and pleasant manner,
whereas he was hairy, ill-favored, and, as his nature disclosed itself
with increasing years, violent, thievish, treacherous; in short, he was
Olopana at his worst. Every day added to the bad feeling between the
boy and his father, for when he had grown old enough to appreciate
the position to which he had been born, the youngster repaid the
hate of his parent, and strove to deserve it. Vain the attempt of
the mother to make peace between them and direct her offspring into
paths of rectitude. In contempt, the chief put the name of Kamapua,
or hog-child, on the boy, and in some of the older myths he actually
figures as a half-monster with a body like that of a man, but with
the head of a boar.

Kamapua gathered the reckless and incorrigible boys of the neighborhood
about him, and the band became a terror by night, for in the dark they
broke the taboo and heads as well, stripped trees of their fruit,
stole swine and fowls, staved in the bottoms of canoes, cut trees,
and in order to look as bad as he felt, the leader cropped his hair
and his beard (when one came to him) to the shortness of an inch,
tattooed the upper half of his body in black, and wore a hog-skin
over his shoulders with bristles outward. On attaining his majority he
left his parents, taking with him some of his reprobates, and set up
in life as a brigand, making his home in lonely defiles of the hills,
and subsisting almost entirely by pillage. Several attempts were made
to catch him, and a local legend at Hauula has it that when close
pressed by an angry crowd he turned himself into a monstrous hog,
made a bridge of himself across a narrow chasm, so that his companions
could run over on his back, scrambled on after them, and so escaped.

The neighbors endured these goings-on until Kamapua had added murder
to his other crimes, when they resolved that he was no longer a
subject for public patience. An army was sent against him, most of his
associates were killed, he was caught, and was taken before his father
for judgment. Olopana sternly ordered that he be given as a sacrifice
to the gods. His mother was in despair at this, for though he was a
most unworthy fellow, a nuisance, a danger, still, he was her son, and
she loved him better than her life. She bribed the priests, whose duty
it was to slay him, and they, having smeared him with chicken-blood,
laid him on the altar. The eye that was gouged from the body of
a victim, and offered to the chief who made the sacrifice, was in
this case the eye of a pig. Olopana did not even pretend to eat this
relic, as he should have done, to follow custom, but flung it aside
and gazed with satisfaction at the gory features of the man who was
shamming death. He had turned to leave the temple when Kamapua leaped
from the altar, picked up the bone dagger with which a feint had been
made of cutting out his eye and stabbed his father repeatedly in the
back. At the sight of a corpse butchering their chief the people fled
in panic, the priests, awe-struck at the result of their corruption,
hid themselves, and the murderer, so soon as he was sure that Olopana
was dead, hurried away, assembled the forty surviving members of his
band, leaped into his canoe, and left Oahu forever.

He landed at Kauai, on the cliff of Kipukai, and remembering a well
of sweet water on its side, he sought for it, up and down, and back
and forth, for he had a raging thirst. Two spirits of the place,
knowing him to be evil, had concealed the spring under a mass of
shrubbery that he might not pollute it; but he found it, and as he
drank he saw their figures reflected in the surface, despite their
concealment in the shadow, and heard their laughter at his greed and
his uncouthness. That angered him. He sprang up, chased them through
the wood, caught them, and with a swing of his great arms hurled them
to the hill across the valley, where they became stone and art seen
to this day. So ill did he behave in Kauai, assailing innocent people
and destroying their taro patches, that they determined to despatch
him, and in order to have him under their advantage it was resolved
to fence him in near Hanalei. The wall of mountain now existing there
is the fence. Just before it was finished the prince in charge of the
work sat to rest in a gap which admits the present road. He heard a
harsh laugh, and looking up saw Kamapua sitting on the top of Hoary
Head. A running fight ensued, in which the outlaw escaped across the
mountain, and the prince, hurling his spear, but missing his mark,
sent the weapon through the crest of the peak, making the remarkable
window that is one of the sights of the island. And now, when a cloud
rests on this mountain, the people say that Kamapua is sitting there.

Some years before this Pele and her brothers had migrated from the
far southern islands and had made their home in Hawaii, close to the
crater of Kilauea,--so close that they were believed to be under
the special protection of the gods; and from that belief no doubt
grew the later faith that Pele and her family were gods themselves;
that they lived in the cones thrust up from the floor of Kilauea by
gas and steam while it was in a viscid state; that the music of their
dances came up in thunder gusts, and that they swam the white surges
of lava in the hell-pit.

Having heard of the beauty of this woman, Kamapua resolved to abduct
her, and after a visit, in which the usual courtesies and hospitalities
were observed, but which he paid in order to estimate the strength of
her following, he attacked the outlying huts of the village in the
night and killed their occupants, intending to follow this assault
by surrounding Pele's house and forcing the surrender of all within:
but hearing the outcry in the distance and divining its meaning, she
and her brothers hastily gathered weapons and provisions and fled to
a cave in the hills three miles away. There was a sufficient spring
in this place, and the entrance was defended by heavy blocks. The
fugitives could have endured a siege of a week with little likelihood
of loss. In the morning a dog, following their scent, led Kamapua
to this stronghold. An attack costing several lives on his side, and
making no effect on those entrenched within, convinced him that it was
useless to expect success from this method, so he piled fuel against
the entrance and set it afire, hoping to suffocate the defenders
to unconsciousness, when he would force his way to the interior and
rescue Pele. Here again he failed, for a strong draft blowing from
the cave carried the smoke into his own face. Then he ordered a hole
to be cut in the cavern roof, for this appeared to be not more than
fifteen or twenty feet thick, and being friable was easily worked by
the stone drills and axes of his men. The workers plied their tools
industriously, while Kamapua shouted threats and defiance through
the chinks in the wall before the cavern door.

His taunts were vain. While the sinking of the shaft was in progress,
a strange new power was coming upon Pele. The gods of the earth and
air had seen this assault and had resolved to take her part. The sky
became overcast with brown, unwholesome-looking clouds, the ground
grew hot and parched, vegetation drooped and withered, birds flew
seaward with cries of distress, and a waiting stillness fell upon
the world. Kamapua had cut away ten feet of rock, when the voice of
Pele was heard in long, shrill laughter, dying in far recesses of the
mountain, as if she were flying through passages of immense length. The
hills began to shake; vast roarings were beard; a choking fume of
sulphur filled the air, dust rolled upward, making a darkness like
the night; then, with a crash like the bursting of a world, the top
of Kilauea was blown toward the heavens in an upward shower of rock;
a fierce glow colored the ash-clouds that volleyed from the crater,
and down the valley came pouring a flood of lava, a river of white
fire, crested with the flame of burning forests, as with foam.

Kamapua and his bandits fled, but again he heard the laughter, this
time from the crater, which Pele had reached from within, and was now
mounting, free, vaulting through the clouds, revelling in the heat and
blaze and din, and hurling rocks and thunderbolts at the intruder. At
the ocean's edge the lava was still close at his heels. Its heat
blistered his skin. He had no time to reach his boats. With his spear
he struck a mighty blow on the ground and cracked the mountain to its
base, so that the ocean flowed in, and a fearful fight of fire and sea
began. Steam shot for miles into the air, with vast geysers leaping
through it, and the hiss and screech and bellow were appalling. The
crater filled with water, so that Pele and her brothers had to drink
it dry, lest the fires should be quenched. When they had done this
they resumed the attack on Kamapua, emptying the mountain of its
ash and molten rock, and hurling tons of stone after the wretch,
who was now straining every muscle to force his boat far enough to
sea to insure his safety. He did not retaliate this time, but was
glad to make his escape; for Pele had come to her godhood at last.



Pele's Hair


Fiercest, though loveliest, of all the gods is Pele, she whose home
is in Kilauea, greatest of the world's volcanoes. When this mountain
lights the heavens, when lava pours from its miles of throat, when
stone bombs are hurled at the stars, when its ash-clouds darken the sun
and moon, when there are thunders beneath the earth, and the houses
shake, then does this spirit of the peak, in robes of fire, ride the
hot blast and shriek in the joy of destruction,--a valkyrie of the
war of nature. Kanakas try to keep on the good side of this torrid
divinity by secret gifts, either of white chickens or of red ohelo
berries, and an old man once put into a guide's hand the bones of a
child that he might throw them down the inner crater,--Halemaumau,
the House of Eternal Burning, whose ruddy lava cones are homes of
the goddess and her family. The dogs sacrificed to Pele, when human
victims were scant, were nursed at the breasts of slaves, and the
priests and virgins received as their portion, after the killing,
the heart and liver. Next to her eyes, of piercing brightness,
the most striking thing in the aspect of this deity is her wealth
of hair, silky, shining red in the glow, and shaken from her head
in a cloud-like spread as of flame. When the eruption is at an end
and a sullen peace follows the outbreak, tufts _of_ this hair are
found in hollows for miles around. Birds gather it for their nests,
and unfearing visitors collect it for cabinets and museums.

Science tells us that Pele's hair is a molten glass; threads of
pumice: a stony froth. When a mighty blast occurs, or when steam
escapes through the boiling mass, particles of pumice shred off in
the upward flight, or are wire-drawn by winds that rage over the
earth. These viscid threads cool quickly in that chill altitude,
and float down again. They can be artificially made by passing
jets of steam through the slag of iron furnaces while it is in a
melted state, the product, which resembles raw cotton, being used,
in place of asbestos, for the packing of boilers, steam-pipes, and
the like. To such base uses might the goddess' shining locks be put,
if she tore them out in large enough handfuls during the carnival of
fire and earthquake; but they are not found in quantities to justify
this search by commercial-minded persons, and conservative Kanakas
might be alarmed by thought of revenges which Pele would visit on
them should they misuse her hair as the foreign heathen do.



The Prayer to Pele


Although Pele is the most terrible of deities, she can be kind. If a
village makes sacrifices to her she is liable at any hour to continue
to keep the peace. Otherwise, she loses her temper and pours out floods
of lava or showers of ashes on the neglectful people, or dries their
springs and wastes their farms. Sacrifices of unhappy beings were made
to her whenever the volcano spirits began to growl, the victims being
bound and thrown into the crater of the threatening mountain. Princess
Kapiolani was probably the first native to protest against these
sacrifices, and in 1824, after her conversion to Christianity,
she gave an instructive exhibition by defying the taboo of Kilauea,
eating the berries growing on the sides of the peak, in defiance of
the priestly order, and throwing rocks contemptuously into the pit.

Pele is the Venus of the islands, and is of wondrous beauty when she
takes a human form, as she does, now and again, when she falls in
love with some Mars or Adonis of the native race, or when she intends
to engage in coasting down the slippery mountain sides,--a sport of
which she is fond. As always with distinguished company, you must
let your competitor win, if you fancy that it is Pele in disguise who
is your rival in a toboggan contest; for a chief of Puna having once
suffered himself to distance her, she revengefully emptied a sea of
lava from the nearest crater and forced him to fly the region. Many
tales of her amours survive. Kamehameha the Great was among her most
favored lovers. It was to help him to a victory that she suffocated
a part of the army of his enemy with steam and sulphur fumes.

It fared less happily with the debonnair Prince Kaululaau when he
attempted force in his wooing. He found Pele watching the surf-riders
at Keauhou, and was ravished by her loveliness. Her skirt glittered
with crystal, her mantle was colored like a rainbow, bracelets of
shell circled her wrists and ankles, her hair was held in a wreath of
flowers. His admiration was not returned. She was contemptuous toward
him,--one could almost say cold, but Pele was seldom that, for when
the young chief approached, the earth about her was blistering hot
and he was compelled to dance. With his magic spear he dissipated her
power for a little and lowered the temperature she had inflamed the
very earth withal. So soon, however, as she had regained her freedom,
and had passed beyond the influence of this spear, she undertook
to avenge herself by opening the gates of the mountain and letting
loose a deluge of lava. Again with his spear-point Kaululaau drew
lines on the ground, beyond which the deadly torrent could not pass,
and through the hot air, amid the rain of ashes and the belching of
sulphurous steam, he regained his canoe and escaped.

Only so far back as 1882 this goddess was petitioned by one of the
faithful, and with effect. Mauna Loa was in eruption. A river of lava
twenty-five miles long was creeping down the slope and was threatening
the town of Hilo. The people raised walls and breaks of stone to
deflect this stream; they dug pits across its course to check it,
but without avail. The vast flow of melted rock kept on, lighting
the skies, charring vegetation at a distance, and filling the air
with an intolerable heat. Princess Ruth, a descendant of Kamehameha,
was appealed to. She hated the white race, and would have seen with
little emotion the destruction of all the European and American
intruders in Hilo; but it was her own people who were most in danger,
so she answered, "I will save the Hilo fish-ponds. Pele will hear a
Kamehameha." A steamer was obtained for her, and with many attendants
she sailed from Honolulu to the threatened point. Climbing the slope
behind the village, she built an altar close to the advancing lava,
cast offerings upon the glowing mass, and solemnly prayed for the
salvation of Hilo. That night the lava ceased to flow. It still forms
a shining bulwark about the menaced town. The princess sailed back
to Honolulu, and the faithful asked the Christians why the pagan
divinity alone had answered the many prayers.



Lohiau and the Volcano Princess


With gods, as with men, who would speed his affairs must keep them in
his own hands. Pele, the volcano goddess, fell in love with Lohiau,
a Kauaian prince, and in human guise remained with him so long that
her sisters were afraid the Kilauea fires would go out. The prince
took an illness, and appeared to die, ere the honeymoon was over,
so, wrapped in cloth of bark, he was put under guard to lie in
state. When Pele had gone back alone to her mountain home a longing
came upon her to feel the young man's arms about her once more and
hear the words of love he had such a pretty talent for telling. But,
instead of going herself, she sent her sister Hiika to rescue his
soul and bring it to her. This was a mistake, for the sister was not
a serious creature. Stopping to brave the devils and giant lizards of
the woods, turning the boards of surf-riders to stone for a prank,
and scaring a fisherman by causing him to pull a human head out of
the sea, the sister next found a half-released spirit hovering near
a dying chief. She tied it in a corner of her skirt and slapped the
skirt against a rock, so the chief finished his dying promptly. In
Kauai, at last, her search was rewarded. She saw the ghost of Lohiau
beckoning from a cave, in which it had been imprisoned by demons, who
fled, hissing, on her approach. She broke the bars of moonbeam that
confined it, tied it in her skirt, carried it to its body, restored
the prince to life, then led him to Hawaii and with him scaled the
mountain where Pele was waiting in great dudgeon. For Hiika had been
gone so long on this journey that a wrong construction had been put on
her delay. Lohiau and Hiika had, indeed, learned to esteem each other,
but they had not violated the trust imposed in them by the goddess.

Pele was madly jealous, however. She turned the prince to stone
on the crater brink,--the poor fellow was growing used to dying
now,--and, dismayed by this act of cruelty, Hiika descended through
the five spheres to the dark underworld where the spirits lived. She
hoped that the young man's ghost would follow her, for pity in his
sufferings had fast increased to love. As the spirit did not come,
she returned to the surface of the earth and went on a voyage of
search in a boat that a god had lent to her,--a boat of cowrie shell,
which in overland travel would shrink so that it could be carried in
the hand; then, at the word, would swell to a stately barge of pearl
with ivory masts and sails as white as the snow on the mountain. This
vessel moved with the speed of the wind in any direction the occupant
indicated by pointing the finger. The prince's wandering spirit was
found in Kauai, its old home; was taken by a messenger to the stone
image on the crater, and put back into the body, and the prince lived
again. Pele was by this time in a soft and repentant humor. She
asked forgiveness of Lohiau and bade him love and wed her sister,
who was good, and had earned his love. This Lohiau did, whereupon
Pele restored to life several of Hiika's friends whom, also, in her
first anger, she had turned to statues of lava.



A Visit of Pele


While a great storm was raging over Hawaii a boy was born to a woman
chief in the camp of King Alapai. At once the soothsayers proclaimed
him as the man of prophecy who should conquer the eight islands and end
their strifes. It seemed as if for once--or oftener--the kahunas were
wrong, for the babe disappeared that very night. There were rumors of
foul play; rumors that Alapai had killed him, that he might not stand
in the way of his own progeny, for this barbarian Macbeth would have no
Banquo to intercept his line or wrest the crown from him. It was five
years before the fate of the child was known. He was not dead: Naole,
a chief, had kidnapped him that the prophecy might come to pass. When
the king heard of this he commanded that the boy be placed at court,
where he might learn manners and the laws, and be kept under the eyes
of the great; but, doubting his master's motive, Naole did not send
the child; he sent another of the same age, who was to cut no figure
in the history of the islands, not being the favored of the gods.

The real prince was kept in so secluded a place and the secret of
his parentage so well preserved--it was prophecy that he should be
fathered of three kings--that he had reached the age of twenty before
Naole deemed it safe to let him mingle with the multitude. He then
made it known that the young man was Kamehameha. By this time King
Alapai was dead, or helpless with age; but the prince, albeit liberal
and just, was rough, strong, dictatorial, a natural military leader,
and he did not lack enemies. Worst among these was his uncle, Pepehi,
an elderly chief, who had read omens in the entrails of sacrifice
warning him to be discreet and guarded in his life or it would be
taken from him by one related to him, and of greater power. He could
not brook the thought of Kamehameha's ascendency, for he was a man
used to deference, a man of weight and dignity, while this new-found
prince was a boor. He therefore made himself unpleasant by criticisms
and carpings, by false interpretations of signs, by implications
against his nephew, and finding that the young man did not retaliate,
he resolved to have his life.

Pretending anger with Kamehameha because he would not study for the
priesthood and succeed to his honors, the soothsayer dinned a tirade
into his ears in the temple ground, hoping to receive a blow, that
he might stab, in return, for he wished the killing to appear as if
done in self-defence. Stung by his insolence, Kamehameha did knock
him down: a good, stout blow, well won. So soon as he had recovered
his wits and got upon his feet the priest plucked out his long bone
knife and made a stroke, but the priestess of the temple, her eyes
blazing with anger at this trespass, caught his wrist and cried, "Down
to your knees! Ask pardon of your future king and mercy of the gods."

At that instant came a rush of wings and a blaze of light filling
the temple space. All fell to the earth, for they had recognized the
tall form before them with the coronet of vari-colored sparks bound
on the golden hair that swept around it like a cloud of glory, and
the robe of tissue that was like flame of silver whiteness. It was
the volcano goddess.

"Peace!" she commanded. "This boy is in the charge of Pele. Let
no hand be lifted against him. No knife, no art, no poison, and no
spell shall shorten his life. He will be your greatest king: your
best. He will put an end to these wretched wars between your families,
and prepare for the day when a pale race will come to these lands,
making them a step in their conquering march around the world. As for
you, Pepehi, speak another word against those I love, lift a hand
against them, and I turn you to a cinder. Aloha!" She had vanished
like flame. Kamehameha, on this revelation of his destiny, sprang to
his feet. His breath was quick and strong, a smile was on his lips,
and he looked into the distance with lifted face and flashing eye, as
if a glorious vision had arisen there. A touch on his foot brought him
to himself. Pepehi was grovelling before him, baring his breast and
offering to Kamehameha the poisoned dagger he had but a few moments
before aimed at the young king's heart. Lifting him from the ground,
Kamehameha comforted the priest with a few words and sent him homeward
with bowed head and dragging step.



The Great Famine


Hua, the licentious king of Maui,--who kept a hundred hula dancers,
was drunk for days together on awa, and spared no wife or daughter
of a friend or subject if she took his fancy,--had been chafing
under the restraints imposed or attempted by his high priest, a
blameless man whose age and long service should have gained even a
king's consideration. It was approaching a new-year feast (the end
of December), toward the close of the twelfth century, and Hua had
made such levies on his people for useless wars and wasteful orgies
that the old man was moved to protest. Hua paid no attention to him,
but loudly ordered his hunters to go to the mountains and bring him
some water-birds for his table.

"Those birds can be found only by the sea," ventured the priest.

"You countermand my orders, do you?" roared the monarch.

"I gave no order," protested the venerable man.

"Hark you," insisted the king. "My men are going to the mountain. If
they find the birds there--and they will--you shall be slain as a
rebel and a false prophet."

Seeing that his master desired his death, the priest bowed and made no
answer. He went to his sons, who were studying for the priesthood,
prevailed on them to fly to Mount Haleakala, and probably hoped
to follow them, but being slow and lame with years, the hunters had
returned before he could escape. They bore their prey, the water-birds,
and said they had found them inland. Knowing this to be a lie, told
by the king's command, the priest said, "These birds came from the
sea. You can smell it upon them. Look." And he cut open two or three
of their bodies. "Here are little fish and bits of seaweed they have
eaten within the hour."

Enraged at the discovery of his paltry subterfuge, the king caught up
a spear and thrust it into the old man's heart. Though everything is
permitted to a king, the people could not repress a groan of horror,
and one by one they stole away from the spot, fearful of what might
follow this sacrilege. Well might they fear. The body of the priest
had barely reached the wooden cross that marked the temple-ground
as sacred when its bearers dropped it upon the earth and fled, for
a sudden fever smote the ground; hot, stifling winds began to blow;
the images of the gods wailed and moaned; the sky was red and dripped
blood, and the altar that was to have received the body sank through
the rock, leaving a hole from which gushed steam and dust. At that hour
every well, brook, and spring in the island went dry, save a rill in
a cave back of Hana that the gods devoted to the daughter-in-law of
the murdered priest and to the old woman who attended her, while a
nightly dew fell thereafter about the sons of the dead man, providing
drink to them and encouraging a growth of fruit and taro sufficient
for their needs.

In a day or two the people were desperate. Their crops were withering,
the forests shedding their leaves. Some men killed their neighbors
and drank their blood; others drank from the ocean and their increased
thirst drove them mad; a few took poison; several offered themselves as
sacrifices and were forthwith killed on the altars; but in vain. Prayer
and offering were unheeded. The wickedness of the people in submitting
to a king like Hua had brought its punishment. Frightened, repentant,
maybe, Hua himself fled to Hawaii, and his retainers scattered
themselves in Molokai, Oahu, and Kauai. They could not escape the
curse. Like the Wandering Jew, they carried disaster with them. Blight,
drouth, thirst, and famine appeared wherever they set foot, and though
the wicked king kept himself alive for three and a half years, he
succumbed to hunger and thirst at last, and in Kohala his withered
frame ceased to be animate. To this day "the rattle of Hua's bones
in the sun" afford a simile in common speech. And the wrath of the
gods was heavy, so that the people died by thousands.

Hua being dead, the survivors looked anxiously for a return of rain and
of life to the islands, and many turned to Naula, of Oahu, imploring
him to intercede with the gods in their behalf. This priest was of
great age, and was reverenced and feared. He could command the spirits
of the living, as well as the spirits of the dead, and talk with them,
far from the place where their bodies lay in trance. He had descended
into hell, had risen to paradise, and had brought back from the region
of the blessed a calabash of the water of life. The animals knew
and obeyed him so well that when he journeyed to Kauai and his canoe
capsized, a whale swallowed him and vomited him forth on the beach at
the very spot where he had intended to land, while at another time two
sharks towed his vessel against a head wind with such speed that the
sea fowl could hardly keep him in sight. Clearing his eye by a fast
and prayer, he climbed to the topmost height of the Waianae Mountains
and closely scanned the horizon. The earth was as brick, and the sky as
brass, and the sea as silver, save in one quarter: a tiny blur on the
universal glare could be seen, he fancied, over Maui. He would wait,
in order to be sure. Yes, in the morning the vapor was still there.

"The sons of the murdered priest are in Maui. I will go to them,"
he said, and descending to the shore he entered his canoe alone, with
neither oar nor sail, yet in the dawn he was at Maui, and the cloud
was now plainly seen waving about the great peak of Hanaula. From their
eyrie on the mountain the two young men had seen the approach of Naula,
for his boat shone in the dark with a moon-like radiance. They knew
that it bore some message for them, and when the old man arrived at
Makena landing they were there to meet him. His white beard swept
the earth as he bowed, and they bent low while waiting for him to
speak. "You are the sons of the most worthy priest who was slain by
Hua," he said. "That evil man has expiated his crime, and his bones
lie unburied in the light. The people suffer and die. The punishment
for Hua's crime has been severe and long. Let us join our prayers to
the gods that they may turn to mercy. I am Naula."

The elder of the sons replied, "Great priest, we will gladly pray
with you for our people, but first tell me of my wife. Is she alive?"

The old man wrapped his head in his cloak and put against his forehead
an amulet of stone. After some moments of silence he flung off the
covering and spoke, "She lives, and is well. The gods have cared for
her in the valley back of Hana."

This announcement carried joy to the heart of the questioner, and he
began at once the erection of an altar, the aged priest sprinkling
it with blessed water and placing beside it the phallic symbol of the
trinity. The invocation was over, but no living creature appeared in
the desert to serve as a sacrifice. A rustling was heard among the
dead bushes and the snout of a black hog was thrust out. Before it
could escape they had seized the creature, with a cry of joy, lifted
it to the altar, stabbed it again and again, and its blood flowed
over the stones. Then all bent about it and prayed with fervor. As
they prayed their shadows grew fainter, and the hot wind lulled. A
low rumble was heard in the south. They looked up. The heavens were
darkening. The rain was coming. "Praise the gods, who are merciful
and who receive our sacrifice!" the priests cried. And with that
immolation the days of suffering were over.



Kiha's Trumpet


Waipio, in Hawaii, is claimed by people who live thereabout to be
the loveliest valley on the island. It was a low and marshy stretch
until a great fish that lived there begged the god Kane to give him
sweeter water and more of it. Kane therefore tumbled rocks across the
stream, so as to dam it into wide pools, and also opened new springs
at the source. The marks of his great hands are still seen on the
stone. In this valley, now so peaceful and so rich in charm, lived
Kiha, king of Hawaii, in the earlier years of the fifteenth century,
a great and dreaded monarch. Of all his possessions he valued none more
highly than his war-trumpet, a large shell adorned with the teeth of
chiefs who had been killed in war. The roar of this instrument could
be heard for ten miles, for it was a magic shell, and when blown in
battle it reproduced the cries of victory and shrieks of the dying;
when blown to summon the people it was like the gale in the forest,
and when it called a sea-god to listen to a prayer it was like surges
thundering against the cliffs.

That day was long remembered when the horn was stolen. It had been
taken from its wrapping and its box, and a hideous mask of stone had
been found in its place. Search availed nothing, and the only comfort
that the priests could offer was a promise of restoration by a being
without cloak or hands, when a cocoa palm, to be planted by the king
at the next full moon, should bear fruit. The tree was planted, but
seven years passed before the nuts appeared. These were eaten by the
king, and on that very night a strange man was arrested on a charge
of thieving and taken before the king for sentence. All through the
questioning a dog with one white eye and a green one kept close beside
the prisoner, appearing to understand every word that was spoken. The
intelligence of this animal was so remarkable as to divert all thought
of punishment for the time, and when the robber had given instances of
the creature's more than human cleverness, Kiha realized suddenly that
this was the agency whereby the magic horn was to be restored to him.

If the dog could find and restore that shell the captive should not
merely be set free, but should be fed at the royal table for the rest
of his life. On hearing this promise, the dog, who had been watching
the king so fixedly out of his green eye as to make his Majesty
uncomfortable, sprang up with a joyous bark, and capered about with
every token of enthusiasm for the task that was to be put upon him.

At the time when the trumpet disappeared from Kiha's house a band of
mountebanks and thieves disappeared from Hawaii. They had camped in
the woods above Waipio, and had been stealing pigs, fowls, fruit, and
taro from the farmers, and had occasionally visited the settlements
to show their skill in juggling and hanky-panky, hoping to earn as a
reward some drinks of the native beer, and perhaps a weapon or a strip
of cloth. It was the chief of this band who had stolen the trumpet. He
had learned its history,--how the god Lono had blown it on the top of
Mauna Kea until trees were uprooted in the blast that came from it,
until the fires kindled in the crater below and threw a red light
against the stars, until the earth shook and the sea heaved like a
monster sighing. It had the voice of a god from that hour, and other
gods obeyed it. The band fled to Oahu with the prize and there led a
graceless life until the populace drove them out, and they returned
to Hawaii.

The arrival of these suspicious characters had been reported to
the king, and he suggested that the dog seek the shell in their
camp at the head of the valley. No sooner was the suggestion made
than the animal rushed away in that direction with the speed of the
wind. Some hours passed, and the night was wearing on wearily, when
a tremendous burst of sound issued from the hills, echoing far and
wide. The king leaped to his feet, the men of his village roused and
grasped their spears, for this was the call to arms,--the first time
they had heard it in seven years. But who was blowing it? Nearer and
nearer came the sky-shaking peal, and presently the dog, bearing the
magic shell in his mouth, ran in, sank at his master's feet, gasped,
shook, stiffened. He was dead from exhaustion.

His master, overcome with grief for the loss of his little friend,
was liberated at once; then, confident that the returned thieves had
had the trumpet in their possession, the king led his forces against
them without waiting for the sun to rise, and slew nearly all. From
one or two survivors of the band he learned that their captain had
offended them by his arrogance and selfishness until they were forced
to reduce him to their own state by silencing the instrument whereby
he called to the gods and gained their help. During one of his drunken
sprees they carried the shell to a wizard, who put a secret taboo
mark on its lip, and when the pirate blew it, on regaining his wits,
it made only a low, dull moaning. Try as he would, he could never
restore it. It was chiefly to propitiate the gods and give its notes
back to the trumpet that he had returned to Hawaii.

When the dog seized the shell, as it lay on the earth near the
sleeping chief, he bit off the edge that had been marked by the
wizard and instantly its voice came back. The wind blown into it
long before by the robber chief was now liberated in quantities in
those tremendous blasts that had roused the king and his people and
appalled the robbers. In this respect it resembled the post-horn of
Baron Munchausen's story, which, on being hung before a fire, allowed
the notes that had been played into it (but not heard) to thaw out
and entertain the company. And if the story of the shell is doubted,
one has only to look at it in the Honolulu Museum to be convinced.



How Moikeha Gained a Wife


Puna, lord of Kauai, was a well-beloved and merciful man. Though he
would not brook insolence, he was always ready to pardon a fisherman
or servant who, in ignorance of his personality, broke the taboo
by stepping on his shadow. His love for Hooipo, his daughter, was
so strong that he delayed her marriage until the gallants began to
complain, and the girl herself became uneasy, lest her charms should
expand to a maturity that might hurt her matrimonial chances. As she
had no preference, however, she agreed that her father might name the
happy man. He, loth to incur the enmity of any at his court, resolved
to offer her as a prize, and the fairest contest seemed in his mind to
be a run to Kaula and back, each contestant to be allowed to use sail
and carry four oarsmen, and the winner of the race to marry Hooipo.

A couple of days before the race was undertaken there arrived at Kauai
a sturdy mariner, one Moikeha, who had just returned from a voyage
to Raiatea, two thousand five hundred miles to the southward. Long
trips of this sort were not unusual among the adventurous islanders,
and there is a tradition that one of them brought to Hawaii two
white men who became priests, and on a later exploration secured
four "foreigners of large stature, bright, staring, roguish eyes, and
reddish faces," who may have been American Indians. Moikeha became the
guest of Puna. He had not been long in the daughter's company before
Hooipo regretted the arrangement for a race, for she had found a man
whom she could love. It was too late to argue with the candidates;
there could be no hope of peace if the princess were withdrawn as
an object of competition and thrown at the head of this stranger. By
general consent he was allowed to take part in the race, provided he
could cite an honorable parentage. This he did, for he was the son of
a former chief in Oahu, and he rattled off the names of his ancestors
for sixteen generations, ending the catalogue in this fashion,
"Maweke and Niolaukea, husband and wife; Mulilealii and Wehelani,
husband and wife; Moikeha and Hooipo, husband and wife." This little
joke, his assumption that the girl was already his, made everybody
laugh and put the company in good humor.

At the word of command a score or more of lusty fellows pushed their
boats through the surf, hoisted sail, and pointed their prows for
Kaula, fifty miles away. Moikeha alone showed no haste. He bade a
cheerful farewell to his host and the pretty daughter, marked with
delight her serious look as he took his leave, then, with a single
attendant and the smallest boat in the fleet, he set off across the
blue water. Directly that her sail was up the little craft sprang
through the sea as if blown by a hurricane, while the other boats slid
over the glassy waves under the push of oars. "It is the fish-god,
Apukohai, who drags his canoe," declared the rowers, as he passed. In
twenty-four hours he was at the side of Kooipo with the whale-tooth,
proof of his voyage, that was delivered to him at Kaula by a servant
who had been sent there with it in advance. He was easily the victor,
the other contestants arriving from one to three days later. No
objection being offered, the couple were married with rejoicings, and
on the death of Puna the husband became chief, and married off eight
or ten youngsters of his own. Not for a long time was it known that in
the race for a wife his lone but potent companion was Laamaomao, the
wind-god, who, loosing favorable breezes from his magic calabash, that
blew whither he listed, carried him swiftly past all other competitors.



The Sailing of Paao


Paao, who afterward became a high priest in Hawaii, migrated thither
in the eleventh century from Samoa, after a quarrel with his brother,
Lonopele. Both of these men were wizards, and were persons of riches
and influence. It came about that Lonopele had missed a quantity of
his choicest fruit, which was conveyed away at night, and although
he could see visions and tell fortunes for others, he could not
reveal for his own satisfaction so simple a matter as the source of
these disappearances. In a foolish rage he accused his nephew, the
son of Paao. Paao was indignant, but, with even greater foolishness,
he killed his son, in order to open the boy's stomach and prove that
there was no fruit in it. This act so rankled in his mind that he
decided to leave the country and forget it, and to that end he built
several strong canoes and stored them well with food and water.

Before sailing, Paao revenged himself for his own folly by killing
a son of Lonopele. The latter discovered the murder too late to
retaliate with weapons, so he summoned the powers of magic to his
aid. He sent a hurricane in chase of the receding boats, but a great
fish pushed them on, despite the wind, which was against them, while
another friendly monster of the sea swam around and around the little
fleet, breaking the force of the waves. Lonopele then sent a colossal
bird to vomit over the canoes and sink them, but mats were put up in
tent-form as protections, and this project also failed.

Paao landed in Hawaii with about forty followers, one of whom was a
powerful prophet. As the canoes were setting off, several would-be
wizards begged to be taken to the new land. Paao called to them to
leap into the sea, if they trusted their own powers, and he would take
them on board. All who jumped were killed by striking on rocks or
by drowning,--all but the real prophet, who did not leave the shore
till the boats were a mile or so away from land. Paao answered his
thunderous hail by an equally thunderous refusal to return, as to go
back after starting was bad luck, but added, "There is room for you, if
you will fly to us." Putting all his strength into his arms and legs,
the prophet swam through the air and reached the boats without injury.

The real Paao is said to have been a Spanish priest who was cast away
on the islands by the wreck of the galleon Santo Iago in 1527. The
ship was bound from Acapulco to Manila with shrines and images. The
priest grafted Christian practices on the native religion, abolished
sacrifice, and begat a line of chiefs.



The Wronged Wife


In 1530, or thereabout, a Spanish ship from Molucca was driven
across the Pacific and flung, in a dismantled condition, on the Keei
Reefs, Hawaii. Only the captain and his sister were rescued. Until
it was discovered that these strangers required food and sleep, like
themselves, the natives worshipped them as gods. They were hardly less
welcome when it was found that they were human, and they married among
the islanders. The woman's grandchild, Kaikilani, was reputed to be the
most beautiful woman ever born in Hawaii. Kaikilani became the wife
of the heir-apparent, who cared so little for government, however,
that the young woman was made chief. Her marriage to this easy-going,
ambitionless, though generous prince had been a failure. As it was a
state marriage, she cared little for him. His stalwart brother, Lono,
was the object of her love and admiration. When the people resolved
that Lono should be king, Kaikilani was divorced and given to him as
queen, for her first husband prized her happiness above his own. Lono
built a yacht worthy of this Cleopatra, a double canoe eighty feet
long and seven wide, floored and enclosed for twenty feet amidships,
so that the queen had an apartment which was luxuriously furnished
with couches, cloths, festoons of flowers, shells, and feathers,
and containing a sacred image and many charms against evil. The twin
vessels were striped with black and yellow, figures of big birds with
men's heads were at the prow, and on calm days, when the sails hung
idly, forty oarsmen pulled the royal barge at a gallant rate.

During a long honeymoon tour the bridal party landed on Molokai, to
await the passing of heavy weather, and the young couple were playing
draughts to beguile the time, when a dark and sudden cloud fell upon
their happiness. One of the servants of the queen was a girl named
Kaikinani, who had a lover, and while the king was studying his next
move he heard a man's voice call, as he thought, "Come, Kaikilani,
your lover is waiting." The man was calling Kaikinani. He abruptly
asked his wife who had dared to address the queen in that easy fashion,
and taking her own surprise and confusion for a token of guilt, he
struck her with the checker-board, rushed away to the beach, ordered
his private canoe to be launched, and seizing one of the paddles,
he rowed with his twenty attendants until he was exhausted. That
night he gained the shores of Oahu.

When Kaikilani had come out of a delirium of nine days, and understood
the nature of the mistake that had separated her from her husband, she
hastily equipped her barge and began a search for him,--a search that
lasted for months. Lono, ensconced at the court of Oahu, was trying
to stifle his regrets; he would not reveal his name; he refused all
companionship with women; he worked at play most earnestly, hunting,
rowing, swimming, surf-riding, racing, leaping, casting the spear,
halting at nothing that involved peril or that would tire him at
night to a forgetful sleep. His stay was drawing to an end. He was
to sail for Hawaii in a day or two, for rebellions were threatening
in his absence, and his departure was none too early, for certain
of the gallants were jealous of his success in sports and of the
unrewarded admiration that the fair sex gave to him. One of these men
taunted him with being a nameless chief. Lono, scowling down on him,
answered that he would tear the skin from his living body if he ever
caught him beyond his king's protection, and producing a big calabash
filled with rebels' bones, he chanted the names of those he had slain.

He was interrupted by a soft voice, outside of the enclosure,
chanting his name-song. Who could have learned his name? The court
had risen. "Yes," he said, "the singer is true. I am Lono, and she
whom I hear is my wife. The gods be praised."

Leaping the wall, he found, as he had hoped, Kaikilani, smiling through
her tears. He held her in a long embrace. Next day they returned to
their native island, where they reigned to an old and happy age.



The Magic Spear


Kaululaau, prince of Maui, had misbehaved so grossly, painting the
sacred pigs, imitating the death-bird's call before the doors of
nervous people, opening the gates of fish-ponds, tippling awa, and
consorting with hula dancers, that his father, believing him to be
incorrigible, shipped him off to Lanai in disgust. Knowing that island
to be infested with gnomes, dragons, and monsters, the lad would fain
have turned the usual new leaf, but he had promised reform so many
times and failed that his father was deaf to his pleadings. Just
before he embarked the old high priest called him aside--he always
had a soft spot in his heart for this scape-grace--and entrusted to
him an ivory spear which had been dipped in the river of the dead and
left on an altar by Lono, the third person of the trinity. With that,
which was both weapon and talisman, the possessor need fear nothing.

Kaululaau had been but a little while in his new home when he was
compelled to put his gift to use. There were malignant beings on
Lanai who hurt people, hogs, fowls; blighted cocoanuts, bananas,
and taro patches, and were a common sorrow to the inhabitants. Worst
among these tormentors was the gnome Mooaleo, who, in the guise of
a big mole, burrowed under houses and caused them to settle, with a
thump. The prince caught this fellow within a circle he had drawn on
the earth, for the witchery of the spear was so strong that the effect
of drawing that line was felt to the centre of the globe. Burrow as
he would,--and he did burrow until he reached fire,--Mooaleo could
not escape from it. The magic barrier confined him like iron. He
came to the air at last and begged to be released, promising to
leave the island forever, if he might gain his liberty. Kaululaau
rubbed out twenty or thirty yards of the enchanted line, whereupon
the creature rushed madly through the gap and dived into the sea,
never again emerging in the sight of men.

For a year the prince kept up his war against the demons and slew
or banished every one of them. For this the men rewarded him with
praise and gifts and service, the women with love, the children with
trust. He was glad he had been exiled. Of course, so soon as his
father heard of his changed life and his courage in knight-errantry he
repented his hardness of spirit and sent messengers to bid Kaululaau
return. This was an unwelcome summons, and while he dared not refuse,
he took his own time in getting home again, his alleged reason for
delay being that he wished to see the world and further instruct
himself; his real reason being a love of praise and adventure. He
stirred up strife in Hawaii; visited, without harm, the wind-god's
home on Molokai and Kalipahoa's poison grove, and on Oahu found
another chance to win the people's favor. A bird so huge that its
head weighed near two hundred pounds had been depredating among the
villages, tearing children from their mothers and killing domestic
animals, yet always defended by the priests, who, having confused it
with a strange species of owl, considered it as sacred. The rover did
not ask permission to slay it. Nobody knew him, or guessed why he
was going among the hills. He came upon the bird in the mountains,
when its beak was dripping with human blood, and at a mile distance
hurled the spear, which flew through the air, as if self-directed, and
pierced the creature through and through. For this he was arrested and
consigned to the sacrificial altar; but when he abandoned his disguise,
appeared in the feather cloak and helmet of a chief, and made known
that he was Kaululaau, the trembling, stammering priest owned that
he was mistaken in supposing the bird to be taboo. Its huge head was
produced; its eyes rolled, its jaws clashed, and with a scream an
evil human spirit that had lived in its body flew into the air. The
ne'er-do-weel had a royal reception when he returned. Finding that
his old friend, the high priest, was dead, he fulfilled a promise by
secretly burying the magic spear-point in his grave.



Hawaiian Witches


To the native Hawaiian, who shuns work, dresses only for decorative
purposes, and is willing to subsist on fruits that grow without
teasing, life is not so simple as we should suppose, to look at
him. Nature abhors a vacuum, even in a man's head, and when the man
cares to put nothing in his noddle that will increase his understanding
and resource, his ancestry will have planted something there which
is sure to swell and grow until it may dominate his conduct and his
fate. And if you open the head of an average barbarian you will find
a flourishing crop of superstition fungi inside. So surely as he is
a barbarian he will believe in witches. If he contents himself with
imagining wizards and spooks, he may find recreation enough in the
dark, but when he accuses other people of practising against him,
and gets them hanged or roasted, his imagination has become too
frisky to be at large. Death for the practice of witchcraft is no
longer possible, however, unless it results from private revenge.

To this day fear and ignorance paint gnomes and elves in the palm
groves and among the wild Java uplands of the mid-Pacific, and Honolulu
itself is not free from the lingering and traditionary kahuna. This is
the wizard, or medicine man, or voodoo worker, who does by prayer and
spell what his employers would do with a club if it were not for the
awkward institution of the law. When a Kanaka has endured an injury
he hires a kahuna to pray his enemy to death. This imposes on the
victim the necessity of hiring a kahuna to pray down the other one,
or of running away, if he cannot afford the expense. The wizard calls
on his intended victim and tells him what is about to happen, and
you would naturally suppose that the visitee would take the visitor
by the collar and the "bosom of his pants" and persuade him away from
the premises, even if he did not go out and exercise upon him in the
yard. In fact, record has been made of explosive exits of these wizards
from Americans' houses when they made their usual courtesy call before
praying the resident out of existence, and 'tis said that they bore
marks of Lynn-made shoe-soles on their seats of honor for a week after.

But your Kanaka fears his medicine man and receives the news of doom
politely. The kahuna tells him that his conduct has displeased some god
or goddess and that he must die. Every kahuna claims what statesmen
call a "pull" with his deities that enables him to have his prayers
answered, while opposition kahunas are snubbed. After a couple of
days the kahuna drops around to see how his victim is getting on,
and generally he finds him in low spirits, with a meagre appetite,
because this process is as reliable as its opposite, which is called
faith-cure. If a man can sufficiently persuade himself that nothing
ails him, he is almost sure to recover from an illness that he hasn't
got; and, by the same token, if he makes himself believe that he is
going to have indigestion, or a fall on the ice, or must die, he
unnerves himself and makes it easy for the expected to happen. If
he runs away and hides, the kahuna's prayers do not work as well,
and if he has been to school and reads the papers, they do not work
at all. Indeed, the islanders have given up white people as tough
subjects, so seasoned in whisky and a wrong religion that curses are
wasted on them as water is wasted on ducks and Kentucky colonels. The
goddess Pele has resigned the foreigner in discouragement.

Well, on this second visit the victim remembers all his misfortunes of
the past two days, his stomach ache, his thirst, his stubbed toe, his
failure to collect eight cents that a neighbor owes him, his nightmare
after a supper of poi,--not mince-pie: just poi,--his discovery of a
bottle too late to know what was in it, and his wife's demand for a
new dress. All these miseries he ascribes to the left-handed prayers
of which he is the subject, and he offers to temporize. As in other
parts of the world, silver is a strong dissuader. If he has hired a
kahuna himself to neutralize his enemy's bad prayers with good ones,
the two voodoo workers will retire and consult as to a settlement,
each preserving a dignity and courtesy worthy of his high profession,
for, although the Roman soothsayers could not keep from snickering
when they met one another in the street, these kahunas really believe
in themselves, for they have prayed too many people out of the world
not to do so.

If an apology and a couple of dollars fail to soften the enemy,
or if the kahunas believe they can raise the stake to three dollars
by toiling a while longer, a prayer duel follows and the best man
wins. Kahuna number one delivers a veritable anathema, bestowing on
his subject more aches and illnesses and deformities and difficulties
than Pius IX. conferred on Victor Emmanuel, while number two sweats
with the haste and force of his invocations for the continued or
increased health and fortune of his client. If he can afford them,
the victim may hire two kahunas and have them pray around the house
until the opposition is silenced or the malevolent employer's money
gives out. When one of the two prays for his patron, in such a case
the other may pray against the enemy who began the trouble, so that,
instead of doing a deadly injury, the instigator of the disturbance
may discover, to his alarm, that he is in more danger than his foe,
and some morning he may find himself dead.

King David Kalakaua made a law against praying folks into their graves,
but the kahunas, to a man, cried, "Why, this will kill business! If
you don't abolish that law we will pray you to death in two days." And
King David took the law away, quick. In order to make a prayer for
death effectual the kahuna must possess himself of some object closely
associated with the person he intends to kill. Finger-nails, hair,
and teeth are especially desired, but if they cannot be had, a few
drops of saliva will do. The kings were always so careful of their
precious selves that nail-parings and hair-croppings were burned to
keep them from falling into the hands of ghoulish kahunas, and they
were always attended by a spittoon-bearer, who was a chief of high
rank, and whose duty it was to see that none of the royal spittle
was accessible to wizards or suspicious strangers. The spittoon was
emptied into the sea at a distance from land secretly and in the
middle of the night. What a lecture Charles Dickens would have read
to the Americans out of this circumstance!

The last death attributed to the kahunas was that of Princess Kaiulani
in the spring of 1899. Though this young woman was enlightened, had
travelled and studied in Europe and America, and presumably disbelieved
in the superstitions of her ancestors, it is whispered that the rumor
of kahuna influence against her shortened her days by many. The people
believed so, at any rate, though they were perplexed by the failure of
the little red fish to run into the harbor just before she breathed
her last, as it was believed that they always made their appearance
prior to a death in the royal family. The rumbling and hissing and
the sounding of a heavy major chord in the depths of Kilauea that
followed the funeral of Kaiulani were directly attributed to her death.



The Cannibals


Despite the denials of Hawaiians that their ancestors ever ate the
flesh of men, it is admitted that a large company of cannibals, strong,
dark, tattooed, and speaking a strange language, were storm-blown
to Kauai in the seventeenth century. It is guessed that they were
Papuans. The daughter of Kokoa, their chief, a beautiful girl of
eighteen or so, with braided hair that almost touched the ground,
and strings of pearls at her neck and ankles, found an admirer and a
husband in an island chief who tried to instruct her in the taboo,
for he had seen with horror and apprehension that the new-comers
allowed their women to eat bananas, cocoanuts, and certain fish, and
even to take them from the dishes used by the men. The bride promised
to reform and live on poi, but she had not been bred to this sort of
victual, and had never been reproved by the gods for eating other,
so it was almost inevitable that she should backslide in her virtuous
intention, and when she so far defied public opinion, and thunders,
and earthquakes as to eat a banana in view of the priests, the public
arose as one man and demanded punishment. The chief begged that he
might be allowed to send her back to her father, but the high priest
told him that the gods had been flouted beyond endurance, and would
be satisfied only with her death. The beautiful and hapless woman was
therefore torn from the arms of her afflicted husband, strangled, and
thrown into the sea,--a warning to all the sex against forbidden fruit.

Then trouble began. Women's appetites might be restrained, but not
those of men,--especially the appetite for blood. Kokoa revenged
himself for his daughter's murder by killing a relative of her
husband and serving him hot to an eager, because long abstemious,
congregation. The taste of Hawaiian chops and shoulders revived a greed
for this sort of meat, and they preyed openly on the populace of Kauai
until those who remained arose as several men and drove them out of
the island. The cannibals fled in haste to Oahu, taking possession
of the plateau of Halemanu, which was high, reachable by only one
or two paths, and those of steepness, difficulty, and under constant
guard, and here they established themselves as a sort of Doone band,
literally living upon the people in the country below. They had their
temple,--oh, yes, indeed, they could pray as long and as loud as any
one,--and a creditable piece of masonry it was, with its walls two
hundred feet by sixty, and seven yards high. Near it was an oven
where five human bodies could be roasted at a time, and a carving
stone six feet long, lightly hollowed, where the hungry were served,
Kokoa claiming the hearts and livers as a chief's right.

It did not take long for the Oahuans to become bashful about visiting
the neighborhood of Halemanu, and the man-eaters then took to eating
one another. One big, savage fellow, named Lotu, began to kill off
his wife's relatives. This roused one of her brothers to revenge. He
strengthened himself in exercises of all kinds until his muscles were
like steel, and encountered with Lotu on the edge of the precipice
near the principal path. They fought hand-to-hand until both were
covered with blood, then, finding that he was about to be forced
over the brink, Lotu clasped his brother-in-law and enemy about the
neck and both went to their death together. The wife and sister of
the two combatants either fainted at the verge and fell or wilfully
cast herself from the same cliff. It is not recorded whether these
victims of an unruly passion were interred in earth or conveniently
disposed of otherwise, but the affair created such a gloom in the
neighborhood that the cannibal colony moved away to parts unknown,
to the vast relief of the community in the more peaceful districts.



The Various Graves of Kaulii


When the Hawaiians were discovered by Captain Cook, in 1779, they had
not been visited by white men, so far as any native then living could
remember. At all events, they had acquired only a fair assortment
of vices and not many diseases. Human sacrifice and the worship
of phallic emblems and effigies of their gods and dead kings were
common. The king expected everybody to fall prostrate before him
when he appeared and pretend to go to sleep,--to be of as little
account as possible. And the people were pliant and willing under
their restraints. They allowed that the king was absolute master. Yet
they were contented usually and not ill looking; lithe and graceful,
too, and gay, fond of sports and swimming, lovers of music, dancing,
flowers, and color, friendly in disposition, and good-natured. Except
in shedding a few of their beliefs with the taking on of more clothes,
they have not changed greatly. As to cannibalism, white men have
become too numerous and too tough for eating, anyway, and they feel
safe in any native company of Pacific Islanders in these times.

Hawaiians claim that they never were cannibals, and that if they ate
such of Captain Cook as they did not return to his second in command it
was because they were absent-minded or mistook him for pork. They had
ceased to believe him a god, for he had displayed infirmities of temper
and consideration that led to his death. A tradition of theirs may
account for a once general belief in their man-eating propensities. It
dates back to the chieftaincy of Kaulii, in Oahu. The people were
careful in the sepulture of their chiefs, fearing that enemies might
find the remains and commit indignities on the senseless relics,
or that the bones might be used for spear-points and fish-hooks,
such implements having magic power when they were whittled from the
shins of kings. To prevent such a possibility, so soon as the spirit
tenant had gone the wise men took charge of the body and prepared it
for the grave. This they did by first cutting off the flesh, which,
being transitory and corruptible, they said was not worthy to be kept,
so was therefore burned; then cleaning the skeleton, soaking it in
oil, and painting it red with turmeric. This melancholy, if gaudy,
object was tied in a parcel and buried in some cave or cranny where
no foeman would be likely to find it. Sometimes the bodies were sunk
at sea, with rocks tied at the feet, and the hearts of Hawaiian kings
were often flung into the molten lava of Kilauea.

Kaulii was chief in Oahu in the seventeenth century. Most of his
ninety years he had faithfully devoted to killing other chiefs and
the people of other islands, wherefore he knew that many would try to
find his bones and break them. Just before his death he enjoined his
councillors to place his skeleton in some receptacle whence it could
not easily be taken. After his death his head councillor took it into
the mountains and was gone for several days. When he returned he sent
an invitation to every one whom his messengers could reach to share
in a feast in memory of the dead chief. Free lunch was just as great
an incentive in that century as it will be in the next. They came,
those faithful people, afoot and in boats, and camped in thousands
near the kitchen. After the games had been dutifully performed--for
funerals were seasons of cheer in those times--the dinner was served
to the assembly. There were boiled dogs, roots, fruits, fish, sour
beer, and poi.

When the last calabash had been emptied and the company had taken
a long breath, an elder in the party asked the councillor if he had
obeyed his master's command and buried the skeleton where it would
be safe from the vendetta that pursues an enemy to the grave. The
councillor made an embracing gesture above the multitude. "Here,"
he cried, "are the graves of Kaulii. His bones can never be disturbed
again."

The people looked about the grass and under their dishes, and, seeing
nothing, asked to be enlightened. Then the councillor explained that
he had not only cleaned the bones of his dead lord, but had dried and
pounded them to a fine meal, had stirred them into the mass of poi
which these warriors and statesmen had enveloped, so that every man
who had shared in that feast was a grave. And they agreed that he was
a faithful and sagacious servant, and passed a resolution to keep his
memory a bright green for several years after he was dead. They say
that was the only time they ate a man, and they did not know it then.



The Kingship of Umi


When King Liloa died he left his younger son, Hakau, to rule Hawaii
in his place, but an older and natural son, Umi, whose mother had
been a farm-worker among the hills, he appointed as guardian of the
temples and their sacred statues. Umi had not learned of his royal
parentage until he had grown to be a fine stout fellow. He had lived
a lonely though adventurous life, and his kingly origin was shown in
the fact that he could never be induced to work or do anything useful,
unless it might be hunting and fishing. Impulses were his guides. He
was in nowise disturbed when he learned that Liloa was his father. On
the contrary, he took on a new dignity, donned the feather cloak and
helmet of a prince, walked, in a couple of days, to the king's house,
passed the guards without a word, carelessly striking down their
threatening spears with his own; then, gaining the king's presence
unannounced, he plumped himself into the old gentleman's lap. For
one of low descent to venture on a liberty like this was death, and
for a moment Liloa was mightily offended. He sprang up, spilling the
prince upon the earth; then, recognizing on the young man's breast an
ivory necklace clasp that had been his love-token to the girl on the
mountain farm years before, and admiring the courage of the youngster,
he kissed him and welcomed him to his family.

The old king died soon after, his skeleton being duly hidden in
the sea, and Hakau, who from the first had been jealous of his
half-brother, now began a series of slights and rebukes which hardly
justified rebellion, yet were so irritating that after enduring them
for a little, Umi retired to the hills and resumed his old, lonely,
wandering life. Not for long, however. Hakau developed into a tyrant,
narrow-minded, selfish, suspicious, cruel. One by one his followers
left him; treasons were rumored in his own household; his very priests
connived against him. At last, reports came to him of a resort to
arms,--of a company advancing from the other side of Hawaii, led by
Umi and Maukaleoleo, the latter a giant eleven feet high, who wore
a thicket of hair that fell to his shoulders, bore a spear thirty
feet long, and inspired terror by his very aspect, albeit in times
of peace he was one of the gentlest of men. When this giant was a
child the god Kanaloa had given him a golden fish, bidding him eat
it and be strong. He had done so, and on that very night began his
wonderful growth, his strength so increasing that presently he could
hurl rocks no two other men could lift.

Troubled by reports of the uprising, the king consulted the oracles in
a temple he had promised to endow, but never had,--his principal gift
(to be)--consisting of a figure of the war god Akuapaao. This had long
before been taken to Hawaii by a prophet whose canoe had been drawn
to its landing-place by the shark god and the god of the winds. In
darkness he entered the inner chamber of the temple. An unknown voice,
speaking from the holy of holies, bade him send his people to the woods
next day for plumage of birds, with which to decorate the statue, when
he should get it, and thereby atone for the neglect and contempt of the
gods that had done so much to bring him into disfavor with the people.

Clever priests! They were already in league with Umi, and this was
but a ruse to dissipate the king's forces. The oracle was obeyed;
the people were sent out to collect the feathers of bright-hued
birds, grumbling that they should be made to labor because of the
laxity and impiety of their ruler; and while they hunted, Umi, almost
within hearing, was praying before the very statue Hakau had sent
his messengers to fetch. He had imposed a strict taboo on his two
thousand warriors for half a day, the taboo in this instance imposing
silence, fasting, and retirement, the forsaking of all industries,
the extinction of all fires and lights, the muzzling of pigs and
dogs, and quieting of fowls by putting them under calabashes. As
Umi advanced toward the statue to decorate it with wreaths a beam
of light fell through a rent in the temple roof and crowned him and
the god. It was a promise. Fires on the mountain tops that night
assembled all the insurgent forces, who were awaiting these signals,
and a few hours later Umi sat on the throne of his father, and the
hated tyrant Hakau was offered to his neglected gods: a sacrifice.



Keaulumoku's Prophecy


Keaulumoku died in 1784. He was a poet, dreamer, prophet, and preserver
of the legends of his people. For more than three-score years he had
roamed about Hawaii, esteemed for his virtues and his wisdom by those
who knew him, tolerated as harmless by those who did not. He wandered
about the vast and desolate lava fields and talked with spirits
there. He learned rhythm and music from the swing of the waves. The
"little people" in the wood were his servants when he needed help. In
his closing years he occupied a cabin alone near Kauhola. Though not
churlish, he cared little for human society,--it seemed so small to
him after daily contemplation of the ocean and mountain majesties and
the nightly vision of the stars; but he was alive to its interests,
and when the future opened to him he was always willing to read it
for comfort or warning.

It was reported in the villages at last that he would look on the faces
of his people but once more, and they were asked to assemble at his
hut on the next evening, when he would chant his last prophecy. Before
sunset they gathered about his cabin a thousand or more, waiting
quietly or talking in whispers, and presently the mat which hung
in the entrance was drawn aside, disclosing the shrunken form and
frosted hair of the venerable prophet. He began his chant in the
quavering voice of age, but as he sang he gained strength, and his
tones were plainly heard by all in the assemblage. He foretold the
union of the islands under Kamehameha, the death of monarchy, the ruin
of the temples, the oncoming of the white race, the disappearance of
the Hawaiian people from the earth. Then blessing the company with
uplifted hands, Keaulumoku sank back lifeless. He was buried with
solemn rites in a temple, and, under the inspiration of his prophecy,
Kamehameha began his work of conquest. In eleven years the islands
were one nation. The rest of the prophecy is coming true.



The Tragedy of Spouting Cave


Many caves pierce the igneous rock of the Hawaiian group, some
with entrances below the ocean level, and discovered only by
accident. Famous among them is the spouting cave of Lanai. Old
myths make this a haunt of the lizard god, but the shark god,
thinking this venture below the water an intrusion on his territory,
threatened to block the entrance with rocks, so the lizard god swam
over to Molokai and made his home in the cave near Kaulapana, where
the people built temples to him. An attempt of a daring explorer to
light the cave of Lanai with fire hid in a closed calabash was also
resented, the vessel being dashed out of the hand of the adventurer
by some formless creature of the dark, who also plucked stones from
the cave roof and hurled at him until he retreated.

To this island, at the end of the eighteenth century, came King
Kamehameha to rest after his war and enjoy the fish dinners for which
the island was famous. One of his captains was Kaili, a courageous
and susceptible Hawaiian, who celebrated the outing by falling
head-over-heels in love. Kaala, "the perfumed flower of Lanai,"
returned his vows, and would have taken him for a husband, without
ceremony or delay, save for the stern parent, who is a frequent figure
in such romances. This parent, Oponui, had a reason for his hate of
Kaili, the two having encountered in the last great battle. Kaili
had probably forgotten his opponent, but Oponui bitterly remembered
him, for his best friend had been struck down by the spear of the
young captain. Another cause for opposing this marriage was that
Kaala had been bespoken by a great, hairy, tattooed savage known as
"the bone-breaker." It occurred to Oponui that a good way to be
rid of the cavalier would be to let him settle his claim with the
famous wrestler. He chuckled as he thought of the outcome, for the
bone-breaker had never been beaten. The challenge having been made
and accepted, the king and his staff agreed to watch the contest. It
was brief, brutal, and decisive. Though the big wrestler had the more
strength, Kaili had the more skill and quickness. He dodged every rush
of his burly opponent, tripped him, broke both his arms by jumping on
them when he was down, and when the disabled but vengeful fighter,
with dangling hands, made a bull-like charge with lowered head, the
captain sprang aside, caught him by the hair, strained him suddenly
backward across his knee, and flung him to the earth, dying with a
broken spine. Kaili had won his bride.

The girl's father was not at the end of his resources, however. He
appeared in a day or two panting, as with a long run, and begged Kaala
to fly at once to her mother in the valley, as she was mortally ill
and wished to see her daughter before she died. The girl kissed her
lover, promising to return soon, and was hurried away by Oponui toward
the Spouting Cave. Arrived there, she looked up and down the shore,
but saw none other than her father, who was smiling into her face
with a look of craft and cruelty that turned her sick at heart. In a
broken voice she asked his purpose. Was her mother dead? Had he killed
her? Oponui seized her arms with the gripe of a giant. "The man you
love is my foe," he shouted. "I shall kill him, if I can. If not, he
shall never see you again. When he has left Lanai, either for Hawaii
or for the land of souls, I will bring you back to the sun. Come!"

Now, the water pushing through the entrance to this cavern becomes
a whirlpool; then, as it belches forth in a refluent wave, it is
hurled into a white column. Watching until the water began to whirl
and suck, Oponui sprang from the rocks, dragging his daughter with
him. She struggled for a moment, believing that his intention was to
drown her. There was a rush and a roar; then, buffeted, breathless,
she arose on the tide, and in a few seconds felt a beach beneath
her feet. Oponui dragged her out of reach of the wave, and as soon
as her eyes grew accustomed to the dimness she found herself to be
in a large, chill cavern. Crabs were clattering over the stones, and
rays and eels could be seen writhing shadowy, in pools. The brawling
of the ocean came smothered, faint, but portentous, and in the green
light that mounted through the submerged door the grotto seemed a
place of dreams,--a dank nightmare.

"Here you stay until I come," commanded Oponui. "Make no attempt to
escape, for so surely as you do, you will be cut to pieces on the
rocks, and the sharks await outside." Then, diving into the receding
water, he disappeared, and she was left alone.

Kaili awaited with impatience the return of his betrothed. He chided
himself that he had allowed her father to persuade him against
following her to the cabin of her mother. Then doubt began to perplex
him; then suspicion. A bird croaked significantly as it flew above
his head. He could not longer endure inaction. Kaala's footprints were
still traceable in the sand. He would go as far as they might lead. He
set off at a round pace, stopping now and then to assure himself,
and presently stood perplexed near the Spouting Cave, for there they
ceased. As he was looking about for some clew that might set him right
once more, a faint movement behind him caused him to turn, and he saw
a figure slinking along from rock to rock, bending low, as if seeking
to be concealed: Oponui! Why should he be alone? Why should he hide
like that? Why was he trying to escape? The truth flashed upon him. He
remembered the man's face in battle, remembered their vain though
savage interchange of spears. Oponui had taken Kaala from him. Had
he killed her? He sprang toward the creeping figure with a shout,
"Where is my wife?"

There was a short struggle; then Oponui, wriggling from his grasp,
set off at a surprising pace toward a temple of refuge, with Kaili
close at his heels. The chase was vain. Oponui reached the gate,
rushed through, and fell on the earth exhausted. Two priests ran
forward and offered their taboo staffs against the entrance of his
pursuer. The gods could not be braved by breaking the taboo. With
a taunt and a curse at his enemy, the captain returned to the shore
where the footprints had disappeared. His heart-beats stifled him. His
head was whirling. As he stood looking down into the boiling waters it
seemed to his wandering fancy as if the girl had risen toward him in
the spout from the cave. Hardly knowing what he did, he spoke her name
and leaped from the rock to clasp her pale form. He was drawn under,
and in a few seconds was flung violently upon the beach in the cave.

Kaili's leap had been seen by his king, who, with a guide, had gone
to seek him, and on learning of this grotto the king and the guide
plunged after. They found the lover seated on the pebbles in the green
twilight, with Kaala's head upon his lap, his arms about her. She was
dying, but a smile of content was on her face. He tried to restore
her, to rouse her to an effort to live. It was of no avail. With a
whispered word of love she closed her eyes and ceased to breathe.

King Kamehameha advanced, his rude face softened with pity. "Come,
Kaili," he said. "The poor child was happy in her last hour. This
cave is her proper burial-place."

"I cannot leave her, O king, for without her I cannot live." Before his
purpose could be divined, Kaili had seized a rock and brought it down
on his own head with crushing force. He swayed for a moment and fell
dead beside the body of his bride. The king had the corpses wrapped
in cloth, but left them there, and the few who have ventured through
the whirlpool have seen in the cave the skeletons of the lovers.

The lament of Ua has been preserved. She was a girl whose secret love
for the captain had impelled her to follow him, and who had seen his
plunge into the leaping water. It runs in this fashion:


    "Dead is Kaili, the young chief of Hawaii,
    The chief of few years and many battles.
    His limbs were strong and his heart was gentle.
    His face was like the sun. He was without fear.
    Dead is the slayer of the Bone-Breaker;
    Dead the chief who crushed the bones of Mailou;
    Dead the lover of Kaala and the loved of Ua.
    For his love he plunged into the deep water.
    For his love he gave his life. Who is like Kaili?
    Kaala is hid and I am lonely.
    Kaili is dead, and the black cloth is over my heart.
    Now let the gods take the life of Ua!"



The Grave of Pupehe


Just off the southwest shore of Lanai is a block of lava eighty or
ninety feet high, vertical or overhanging on every side, absolutely
without foothold. Yet at its top one may see from the neighboring
shore a grave with a low wall built about it. This is the resting-place
of Pupehe, the wife of one to whom was given the name of Misty Eyes,
because the woman's eyes so dazzled his own. These two loved so well
that they were all in all to one another. They chose to live apart
from their people, roaming the woods, climbing the hills, surf-riding,
fishing, berrying as the whim took them.

Lest some chief should look on her face and envy him, Misty Eyes hid
his companion in a little hut among the trees, as secret and secure as
a bird's nest, and sometimes they would go together to a cave, opening
from the sea, opposite Pupehe's Rock, to catch and cook a sea-turtle.

The season of storms was at hand, but as the day had broken fair,
Pupehe went to the cave to prepare a meal, while her husband took
the calabashes to fill at a spring up the valley. A mist had come
up from nowhere when he turned to go back; the wind was rising to
a gale, the sea was whitening. His heart went into his throat, for
he recalled how the breakers thundered in at the cave and swept the
strip of beach inside. Flinging down the calabashes, he ran with
all his speed. Immense waves were sweeping the cavern from end to
end. Their thunder deafened him. Out of an acre of seething white
a brown arm lifted. He leaped in, seized Pupehe, and succeeded in
gaining the shore, but to no avail. She was dead. After the storm had
passed he paddled to the lonely rock; was raised, with his burden,
by a pitying god, and on the summit, where none might stand even
beside the grave of her whom in life he had guarded so jealously,
he buried the cold form. When the last stone had been placed on the
wall, Misty Eyes sang a dirge for his wife and leaped into the sea.



The Lady of the Twilight


In Koolauloa, Oahu, is a natural well, of unknown depth and thirty
yards in diameter, that is believed to be connected with the
ocean. Bodies drowned in this crater are said to have been found
afterward floating in the sea. This pond, known as Waiapuka, hides
the entrance to a cave that can be reached only by diving, and in
that cave was concealed during her infancy Laieikawai, Lady of the
Twilight. Her father, enraged that his wife always presented female
children to him, swore he would kill all such offspring until a male
issue should appear, and Laieikawai was therefore kept out of his
sight and in retirement until she had grown to womanhood. Her beauty
attracted even the gods, and chiefs from many islands travelled far to
see her face when she had been taken from the cavern by her grandmother
and bestowed more fittingly in a house thatched with parrot feathers
and guarded by the lizard god. Her bed was bird-wings, the birds were
her companions, she wore a robe tinted like a rainbow, and wherever
she went a fragment of rainbow hung over her and might be seen afar.

Laieikawai married a sun prince, and the same rainbow served as a
ladder to take her to his new home in the moon, his place in the sun
being too hot and glaring for endurance. This was a fickle prince, for
having seen another pretty face on earth, he descended, and it was a
year ere he appeared in the moon again. The young wife meanwhile had
gone to the bowl of knowledge, a wooden vessel enclosed in wicker,
decorated with feathers and with birds carved in wood along the
rim. Looking in and uttering the command, "Laukapalili!" a vision of
her recreant husband appeared. The father and mother of the prince were
joint witnesses with the wife of his faithlessness. As the picture
vanished the air grew dark; faint, grisly shapes arose, and wailing
voices sounded, "Heaven has fallen!" Standing on the rainbow bridge,
the father, mother, and wife cast off their love for the prince, and
condemned him to be a wandering ghost, living on butterflies. Then,
having tired of heaven, the Lady of the Twilight returned to earth.



The Ladrones


The taking of Guam during the war with Spain was one of the comedies
of that disagreement. When its rickety fort was fired upon by one of
our ships, the Spanish governor hastened down to the shore to greet
the American officers, and apologized because he was out of powder
and could not reply to what he supposed was a salute. Off in that
corner of the world he had not heard of any war.

With the cession of this largest of the Ladrone islands we fall heir to
some race problems as baffling as those presented by our Indians. The
natives of this group belong to the Tarapons, and the traditions
of these people say that they came in part from the east and partly
from the west. It has been thought that they have a slight mixture of
Mongolian blood, and this is not unlikely, for Chinese and Japanese
junks have at various times been blown over sea to farther shores than
these. History for this group begins with Magellan, who named it for
the ladrones or thieves, who annexed his belongings when he arrived
on the first voyage that had ever been made around the world. That
they had crafts and arts is proved by their weapons, canoes, cloth,
and armor, and they have left here some remarkable stone columns,
more than twice the height of a man, with hemispheres of rock on their
tops, flat sides uppermost, and six feet wide. In Tinian, Kusaie,
and also in Ponape, in the Carolines, there are ruins, including,
in the latter island, a court three hundred feet long with walls ten
yards high, some of the monoliths being twenty-five feet long and
eight feet thick. On Tongataboo are larger rocks, forty feet high,
which were quarried elsewhere and shipped to that coral island. On
Easter Island are platforms a hundred yards long, ten wide and ten
high, with great statues all cut from stone. None of these remains,
nor the picture-writing found near the statues, throw light on the
history, purpose, or personality of their builders. Every family has
its little circle of shells and stones which is a shrine where the
gods are worshipped, and most of the gods are spirits of the great
and wise who died long ago. Offerings to these took the form of food
and of anointing for their altars, but human sacrifices were no doubt
demanded at times, when the priests had been specially venturesome
in asking favors. When a man died his soul sprang out, went below
the earth, and found felicity in the west. This belief resembles
the Indian faith in the happy hunting-ground, and incidentally it
points the course of empire. The spirit could return once in a while,
and ghostly visitations were sorely dreaded. The institution of the
taboo was and is connected with the native religions of the Pacific
islands. We have adopted the word and use it in its true meaning
of forbidden. If an article were dedicated to a god, or used in his
worship, or had been touched by him, or claimed by a chief or a priest,
no commoner dared lay finger on it, for it was as sacred as the ark of
the covenant. Some canny planters kept boys out of their orchards and
palm groves by offering the fruit to certain gods until it was ripe,
for a sign of taboo kept out all marauders till the crop was ready for
gathering, when the owner changed his mind and claimed it himself. To
break a taboo was not only to incur the wrath of the priests, but of
the gods to whom the gift was offered, and who would surely reward
the blasphemer for his sin by illness, accident, loss, or death.

As soon as the Spaniards had occupied the Ladrones--afterward named the
Marianas, in honor of Maria Anna, queen of Philip IV. of Spain--they
proceeded to slaughter the natives. In seventy years they had slain
with sword, rack, toil, grief, and new diseases about fifty thousand
people, reducing the populace to eighteen hundred. Of this aboriginal
race, the Chamorros, nearly all have perished. In their original
estate these were the most advanced of the Pacific islanders; they
had more arts, more refinement, more kindliness, and more morality
than the others. Under an age of oppression and abuse they naturally
deteriorated, and have cared little to advantage themselves by the
few schools and chapels that the Spaniards established in Guam and
thereabout. It may be that the Chamorros shared with the people
of the Carolines in the suffering caused by the great irruption of
savages from the south under Icho-Kalakal. These warriors, in their
wooden navies, destroyed the great tombs and temples because they
had been raised to other gods than their own, slew the defenders of
the temples, and broke up the old civilization, passing from island
to island, and continuing their waste and murder. It was a raid of
Goths and Vandals, and the effect of it was lasting. In Ponape it is
said that the great structures they overthrew are haunted, and people
thereabout will not eat a certain fresh-water fish of a blue color,
because the king, Chauteleur, flying before Icho-Kalakal, fell into
Chapalap River and was changed by the gods into one of these fish.



Old Beliefs of the Filipinos


Respecting their myths the Filipinos differ in little from other human
families whose civilization is incomplete. They had in former times
the same tendency to create gods and spirits for particular hills,
woods, seas, and lakes, to endow the brutes with human qualities,
to symbolize in the deeds of men and animals the phenomena of the
heavens. Even now the Monteses tell of a tree that folds its limbs
around the trunk of another and hugs it to death, the tree thus
killed rotting and leaving a tube of tightly laced branches in which
are creatures that bleed through the bark at a sword-thrust or an
ax-cut. These creatures are mischievously alleged to be Spaniards. The
Tagalogs believe in Tic-Balan, an evil spirit who inhabits fig-trees,
but is kept off by wearing a certain herb, and in a female spirit
of the woods, Azuan, who is kept away from the house in times of
domestic anxiety by the husband, who mounts to the roof and keeps up
a disturbance for some hours.

In their feasts and ceremonies the natives have hymns and prayers
to the rain-spirit, the sea, the star-god, the good birds, and the
winds. Little has been done toward the preservation of their myths,
for the Spaniards, during their centuries of control, suppressed
learning, except as it pertained to religious studies, and tolerated
but scant liberty of opinion. The friars, against whom the people
nursed so strong a hate, stood for all that was harsh, narrow,
tyrannical, and unprogressive. In order to gain money and maintain
their political ascendency they engaged in commerce, became owners
of real estate and buildings, including saloons and dance-houses,
debased their churchly functions, discouraged attempts at progress,
practically forbade the printing of secular books and papers, making
illiteracy, with its attendant vice, poverty, and superstition,
universal; and when Dr. Jose Rizal urged his reforms in the church and
civil service, he was shot, though not as a blasphemer, but because
his secret order, the Katipunan, with its Masonic ritual and blood
initiation, was thought to be dangerous to the public peace.

The change from this mediæval condition to that of the nineteenth
century, with its impatience of title, caste, form, and ceremony,
its trust in equal right, its insistence on freedom of belief,
came suddenly. In shaking off their ancient political and religious
bonds the Filipinos may lose some of the quaint and poetic records of
their ancient faiths; for the first progress of a nation after a long
sleep is a material one, and art, literature, all the more delicate
expressions of national taste, history, and tendency, have to bide
their day until the fortunes of the nation are assured. In this period
of reconstruction let us hope that those fables and dreams will not
be forgotten which tell, more truly than dates and names and records,
the ancient state of the people, and afford us a means of estimating
the impetus and direction of their advance.

The influence of Christian teaching is plain in some of the songs,
plays, and stories of the natives, especially in the plays, for in them
the hero is often a Christian prince who defeats a strong and wicked
Mohammedan ruler, and releases an injured maiden. Change the names and
the play becomes a modern English melodrama. In several of the islands,
however, the impress of Spanish occupancy is slight, and customs are
still in force that have existed for hundreds of years. On Mindanao
are still to be found the politic devil-worshippers, who, instead of
seeking to ingratiate themselves with benevolent deities, whose favor
is already assured, try to gain the goodwill of the fiends. Their
rites are practised in caves in which will be found ugly figures of
wood and an altar on which animals are sacrificed. The flesh of these
animals is eaten by the devils, according to the priests, and by the
priests, according to the white men. The evil spirits who appear in
the half-darkness of these caves, leaping and screaming, goading the
company to frenzy, are priests in disguise and in demoniac possession.

Tagbanuas tear a house down when a death occurs in it, bury the
corpse in the woods, and mark the grave by dishes and pots used by
the deceased in life. These implements are broken. Among our American
Indians the outfits supplied to a dead man are in sound condition,
as it is supposed he will need them on his journey to the happy
hunting-grounds, while the Chinese put rice and chicken in sound
vessels on the graves of their brethren, believing they will need
refreshment when they start on the long journey to the land of the
shades. Tramps know where the Chinese are accustomed to bury their
dead in American cities. When food is placed before an Otaheite corpse
it is not for the dead, but for the gods, and is intended to secure
their good offices for the departed. While a Tagbanua corpse is above
ground it is liable to be eaten by a vampire called the balbal that
lives on Mindanao, has the form of a man with wings and great claws,
tears open the thatch of houses and consumes bodies by means of a
long tongue, which it thrusts through the opening in the roof. These
Tagbanuas do not believe in a heaven in the skies, because, they say,
you could not get up there. When a man dies he enters a cave that
leads into the depths of the earth, and after travelling for a long
time he arrives in the chamber where Taliakood sits,--a giant who
employs his leisure in stirring a fire that licks two tree trunks
without destroying them. The giant asks the new-comer if he has been
good or bad in the world overhead, but the dead man makes no reply. He
has a witness who has lived with him and knows his actions, and it is
the function and duty of this witness to state the case. This little
creature is a louse. On being asked what would happen if a native
were to die without one of these attendants, the people protest that
no such thing ever happens. So the louse, having neither to gain nor
lose, reports the conduct of his commissary and associate, and if
the man has been bad, Taliakood throws him into the fire, where he
is burned to ashes, and so an end of him. If he has been good, the
giant speeds him on his way to a happy hunting-ground, where he can
kill animals by thousands, and where the earth also yields fruits and
vegetables in plenty. Here he finds a house, without having the trouble
to build one, and a wife is also provided for him,--the deceased wife
of some neighbor usually, although he can have his own wife if she is
considerate enough to die when he does. Down here everybody is well
off, though the rich, having had much pleasure in the world, have
less of it than the poor. After a term of years the Tagbanua dies
again and goes at once to a heaven in a deeper cave without danger
from fire. Seven times he dies, each time going deeper and becoming
happier, and probably gains Nirvana in the end. Occasionally a good
spirit returns as a dove, and a bad one comes as a goat; indeed,
a few of the bad ones are doomed to wander over the earth forever.

A common belief is that the soul is absent from the body in sleep,
and if death occurs then the soul is lost. "May you die sleeping"
is one of the most dreadful of curses.

Among the Mangyan mountaineers it is customary to desert a person
who is about to die. They return after his death, carry the corpse to
the forest, build a fence about it, and roof it with a thatch. These
people seem to have no word for god, spirit, or future life; they do
not worship either visible or unseen things, and are the most moral
of the Filipinos. The lowlanders also desert their dying, and after
death close all paths to the house, leave the skeleton of the defunct
to be picked clean by ants, and change their names for luck.

When an islander in the Calamianes province dies his friends ask
the corpse where it would like to be buried, naming several places,
and lifting the body after each question. When the body seems to
rise lightly the dead man has said, "Yes." It may then be buried, or
placed in a tree in the desired locality, with such of its belongings
as the family can spare, and the mourners watch around a fire that
night until all the logs are consumed. The dead man walks about in
the ashes, leaving his footprints, and sometimes shows himself to
his relatives. Singing and feasting follow for several nights, and
the house of the dead is then abandoned.

The holes in the marble cliffs of San Francisco Strait formerly
contained the coffined dead of the tattooed Pintados, who sacrificed
slaves at the funeral that they might attend their relatives in the
next world. Fear of the spirits of these rocks was but partially
overcome when a Spanish priest smashed the coffins and tumbled the
bodies into the sea, for the strait is still haunted and the burial
rocks are good places to keep away from after dark.

Among the Moslem Moros it is a sure passport to heaven to kill a
Christian, and when one remembers how the people have been robbed,
tortured, and oppressed by nominal Christians, this item of faith
is not surprising. The more Christians he kills the greater will
be his reward. He bathes in a sacred spring, shaves his eye-brows,
dresses in white, takes an oath before a pandita or native priest to
die killing infidels; then, with the ugly creese, or wave-edged knife,
he runs madly through the street, killing, right and left, until some
considerate person shoots him. In the rage for blood he has been known
to push himself farther against a sword or bayonet that had already
entered his vitals in order to stab the man who had stopped him. When
they hear of his death the relatives of the fanatic have a celebration,
and declare that in the fall of the night they see him ride by on
a white horse, bound for the home of the good, where no Christians
ever go to vex the angels. These people are often fatalists. They
will drink water known to be poisoned with typhoid germs, and when
epidemics come they declare them to be the will of God, and refuse
to take the slightest measure against infection. They believe that
when a strange black dog runs by cholera follows on his heels.

Yet, like our Indians, the better Tagbanuas and Calamianes try to
heal the sick through the aid of drugs and charms and incantations,
and they have their medicine man or papalyan. There is in the forest a
strange little fellow, known as the man of the wood, who has the power
of giving to these doctors the art of healing. He rushes out upon one
who walks alone, seeking power, and brandishes a spear, finally aiming
it at the breast of the candidate, and advancing his foot as if to
throw it. If the candidate runs he is unworthy, but if he stands his
ground the little man of the wood drops his spear and gives a pearl to
him. This pearl is never shown to anybody. It is looked at secretly at
a patient's bedside, and if clear the physician will prescribe, but if
it is dark, or has taken on a stony aspect, he resigns the case. The
"drugs" are similar to those used by the Chinese, consisting in part
of powdered teeth and bones and other animal preparations. Charms are
in common use as a protection not only from disease but from murder
and misfortune, and in the fighting between the Americans and the
natives about Manila many poor, half-naked creatures, armed with bows
and arrows, had ventured fearlessly into the zone of fire, believing
themselves to be safe because they wore an anting-anting at the
neck. This object, like an Indian's "good medicine," is anything,--a
little book, a bright pebble, a church relic, a medal, an old bullet,
a coin, a piece of cloth, a pack of cards. It is the faith that goes
with it, not the object itself, that counts. Even Aguinaldo has
been invested by his followers with superhuman power. Just before
he resorted to arms against the Americans the natives knew that the
time for rebellion had come, for a woman in Biacnabato gave birth
to a child dressed in a general's uniform, and above Tondo a woman's
figure crowned with snakes was painted in fire upon the night-sky.

In details of their faiths the tribes differ, but there is a prevalent
belief in a principle of good that the Moros call Tuhan. The sun,
moon, and stars are the light that shines from him,--he is everywhere,
all-seeing, all-powerful; he has given fleeting souls to brutes
and eternal souls to men. The soul enters a child's body at birth,
through the soft space in the top of the head, and leaves through the
skull at death. Their first men were giants, and Eve was fifty feet
high, but as men's minds grew their bodies became of less account,
and they will shrink and shrink until, at the world's end, they will
be only three feet high, but will consist mostly of brains. Comparing
a brawny savage with an anæmic scholar, one fancies there is reason
in this forecast. The Tagbanuas have no Adam and Eve. Those of them
who live beside the ocean say they are the children of Bulalacao,
a falling star that descended to the shore and became a beautiful
woman. The gods of these people are like men, but are stronger,
living in caves, eating an ambrosia-like boiled rice that has the
power of moving. Their gods sometimes steal their children.

Old Testament traditions are commonly accepted by the Moros, who
believe in No (Noah), Adam, Mosa (Moses), Ibrahim (Abraham), Sulaiman
(Solomon), Daud (David), and Yakub (Jacob); but creation myths are
locally modified, and some tales of recent emergence of islands out
of the sea are probably true. In all volcanic districts mountains may
be shaken down and hills cast up in a day. Siquijor formerly bore the
name of the Isle of Fire, for the natives say that in the days of their
grandfathers a cloud brooded on the sea for a week, uttering thunders
and hisses and flashing forth bolts of fire. When the cloud lifted,
Siquijor stood there. The geology of the island supports the tradition.

The future is differently conceived by different sects and families,
some panditas teaching that the soul, having come from God, will
return to him at death; others that it will sleep in the earth or
the air until the world has ended, when all will be swept on a wind
to a mount of judgment, where saints and angels will weigh them,
and souls heavy with sin will fall into hell; others that there is
no hell of fire, because there is not coal enough to keep it going,
but that every man is punished until his soul is purified, when it
rises to heaven, glowing with light and color; others that men are
punished according to their sins; liars and gossips with sore mouths
and tired jaws; gluttons with lame stomachs; jealous, cruel, tricky
people with aching hearts; abusive and thievish ones with pains in
their hands; others that one finds hell enough on earth in fear,
illness, disappointment, misunderstanding and Spaniards, to atone
for all the mischief he is liable to make.



Animal Myths


In the fables of the Filipinos the animals often speak together
in a common language. The dove, however, is the only one that
comprehends human speech, and it is a creature of uncommon shrewdness
and intelligence, like the hare in the Indian myths and Br'er Rabbit
in the stories of our Southern negroes. Once the dove was a child. In
shame and anger that its mother should refuse to give it some rice she
was pounding for panapig (a sort of cake), it ran out of the cabin,
took two leaves of a nipa, shaped wings from them, which it fastened to
its shoulders, and fluttered into the boughs of a neighboring tree,
changing, in its flight, from a child to a dove. It still calls
for panapig.

Darwin is read backward by the natives, for they say that the monkey
was a man, long, long ago, and might have been one still but for his
mañana habit, so general in the Spanish colonies. He had a partner
whom he greatly vexed by his idleness, and once, when this partner
was planting rice, he glanced up and saw the monkey squatted on the
earth, with his face between his hands, watching the labors of the
industrious member of the firm,--for nothing makes loafing sweeter
than to see somebody else work. Enraged, the busy one caught up a
cudgel and flung it at the monkey, who was thereupon seized with a
sudden but futile activity, and started to run away. The club struck
him in the rear so mightily that it entered his spinal column and
stayed there, becoming his tail.

In the Moro tradition of the flood--a tradition almost world-wide--Noah
and his family got into a box when the forty days of rain began,
and one pair of each kind of bird and beast followed them. All of the
human race except Noah, his wife and children, were either drowned or
changed. Those men who ran to the mountains when they saw the flood
rising became monkeys; those who flung themselves into the sea became
fish; the Chinese turned into hornbills; a woman who was eating seaweed
and kept on eating after the waves broke over her became a dugong.

In Mindanao, Basilan, and Sulu the pig is held in suspicion and its
flesh is not eaten. The reason for this aversion is that the first
pigs were grandchildren of the great Mahomet himself, and their
conversion to these lowly quadrupeds fell out in this way: When Jesus
(Isa) called on Mahomet, the latter, jealous of his reputed power,
bade him guess what was in the next room. Christ said that he did
not wish to do so. Mahomet then commanded him to prove his ability
to see through walls, and added that if he made a mistake he would
kill him. Thereupon Christ answered, "There are two animals in that
chamber that are like no other in the world."

"Wrong!" cried the Prophet, plucking out his sword. "They are my
grandchildren. You have spoken false, and you must lose your head."

"Look and see," insisted Christ, and Mahomet flung open the chamber
door, whereupon two hogs rushed out. It should be added that while
the divinity of Christ is denied in some of the Oriental religions,
he figures in many of them as a great and good man, gifted with
supernatural power. Moros charge as one reason for killing Christians
that followers of Christ disgrace and belie mankind in teaching that
men could kill their own god.

On Mindoro the timarau, a small buffalo that lives in the jungle,
has given rise to rumors of a fierce and destructive creature that
carries a single horn on his head. It is a wild and hard fighter, but
it has two horns, and is not likely to injure any save those who are
seeking to injure it. A creature with an armed head has lingered down
from the day of Marco Polo, because in the stock of yarns assembled by
that redoubtable tourist the unicorn figured. This was the rhinoceros,
which is found so near the Philippines as Sumatra. The gnu of Africa
is another possible ancestor of this creature, a belief in which
goes back to the time of Aristotle; but the horse-like animal with
a narwhal's horn that frisks on the British arms never existed.

And, speaking of horses, it is strange that centaurs should figure
in the mythology of a country like Luzon; but a mile from the church
at Mariveles is a hot spring beside which lived a creature that
was half-horse and half-man. As in ancient Greece, there is little
doubt that a belief in this being came from the wonder excited by
the first horsemen.

Sea-eagles in the East are large and powerful, and are believed to
have long memories. According to report, a man living near Jala Jala
once stole a nest of their young and carried it to his house. It was
a year from that time before any retaliation was attempted. The birds
then appeared above his premises, swooped down on his wife, clawed
her face and beat her with their wings until she was half-dead; then
picked up her babe and carried it away before the eyes of the helpless
parents. Next year they came again, and another infant, a few months
old, was stolen. The man tracked them to their nest, which had been
built high on a cliff that no one had ever scaled before. Nerved by
grief and anger, he climbed it. In the nest were the skeletons of
his children. As he clung to the rock, hanging over a dizzy space
and looking on these sad relics, the father bird came swooping from
the sky and began to strike at him with claws and wings. In the face
of such an assault the man could not descend in safety. Death was
sure. He could only hope to kill his enemy, too. As the bird drew
near he leaped from the rock, caught the eagle about the neck, and
the two plunged down to death together.

An animal god especially to be feared is Calapnitan, king of the
bats. He is so powerful and capable of mischief that in exploring a
cave where bats are likely to have congregated the natives will speak
in the most respectful terms of this deity, for he would be sure to
hear them if they spoke flippantly of him, and might swoop from the
cave roof and whip their eyes out with his leathern wings or tear them
with his claws. Hence they bow their heads and speak with reverence
of the Lord Calapnitan's cave, the Lord Calapnitan's stalactite,
even recognizing his temporary ownership of their clothing, arms,
lights, and so on, and alluding to their own jackets as the Lord
Calapnitan's. By carefully refraining in this manner from giving
offence the Filipinos have succeeded in keeping their skins entire
while guiding white travellers through the caverns in their islands.



Later Religious Myths and Miracles


Among stories that date no farther back than the Spanish conquest we
find the usual tales of sacred springs, of visions, and of blessed
objects. The Church of the Holy Infant, in the city of Cebu, contains
an image of the Christ child, about fifteen inches in height, carved
in ebony, preserved in much state and loaded with a profusion of
ornament. The priests tell you that it was made in heaven, thrown
to the earth, and found in 1565 by a soldier who recovered from
an illness when he touched it. It was taken to the convent in Cebu,
where the clergy emplaced it with great ceremony, and where on the 20th
of January in every year it is dressed in a field marshal's regalia,
receives a field marshal's salute, and is worshipped by thousands of
pilgrims from all parts of the archipelago. So many women wrought
themselves into an insane frenzy during these January feasts that
their sacred dances, which were once a part of the ceremonies, had
to be stopped. When the town was burned this statue saved itself from
the flames, as did the bamboo cross near the church, which is said to
be the same that was erected by the monk, Martin de Rada, on the day
when the Spanish landed, more than three centuries ago. Matter-of-fact
historians allow that the figure of the child may have been left
there by Magellan. It worked miracles of a surprising character for
years after his death, and the first settlement in Cebu was called
The City of the Most Holy Name of Jesus in its honor. The customary
discrepancies between the piety and the practice of the conquerors
existed in the Philippines, as in the Antilles. They slew the natives
until the survivors threw up their hands and professed the right
religion; then they shot twenty-four thousand Chinese who had settled
in and about Cebu, thus reducing themselves to a wretched state, for
these Spaniards had depended on the Chinese as their servants, cooks,
farmers, laborers, shoemakers, and tailors. It is worthy of note that
other missionaries had shown activity, but with less result, for their
methods had been more conciliatory. The Mahometanism that had been
introduced by Moslem preachers from Arabia got no farther than Sulu,
and the Confucianism imported by Chinamen seems to have obtained no
permanent hold. Through all changes the Holy Child remained uninjured,
and he continues his good work to this day.

When the Sulu pirates had fallen upon a year of such bad business that
they reaped a profit of barely fifty per cent, on their investment
in ships and weapons, there was great discontent among them. Prizes
were few and defeats occasional. Looking back on their highest hill,
as they sailed away, and fearing that when they returned it might be
with but half a cargo of gold and rum and Christians, so many of them
wept for the misery of this thought that to this day the height is
known as Buat Timantangis, or Mount of Tears. In one dull season,
when the pirates were almost mutinous because of their continued
ill-fortune, it occurred to one of the captains that an image to
which the Christians prayed so earnestly and with such good effect
might do as much for him as for some other natives. In his barbarian
mind there was no absurdity in trying to persuade a gentle Virgin or
a pure-minded Saint to deliver into his hands the goods and persons
of those who knelt before their effigies. A sacred image was "good
medicine" for Spaniards and Tagalogs, and should, therefore, be
good medicine for Mahometans. Thus, he bethought him of the statue
now known as the Virgin of Antipolo, that came from Spain by way
of Mexico in charge of early missionaries. To think was to act. He
raided the village where it had been enshrined and attempted to carry
it off; but the statue had warned the faithful of its peril, and the
marauders were met and driven off by a powerful force. The Virgin of
Antipolo became one of the most influential of all the guardians of
the islands, and to this day is especially besought by mothers who
ask for her intercession on behalf of their sickly children. Holy
water taken from her shrine will cure the sufferer, and the mother
then performs a public penance in thankfulness. Before the American
arrival, with its sudden imposition of new ideas on an old society,
it was no uncommon thing to see on Good Friday a company of the
richest women in Manila, poorly attired and with bare feet, dragging
through the streets a heavy cross thirty feet in length. This was in
fulfilment of vows they had made at the shrine of Antipolo.

This Virgin of Antipolo is likewise known as Our Lady of Good Voyage
and Peace. She arrived from Mexico in a state galleon in 1626. On
the voyage she calmed a storm so quickly that the priests proclaimed
her special sanctity, and ordered her to be received in Manila with
salutes of bells and guns. While the Jesuits were building a church
for her she would often descend from her temporary altar and stand
in an antipolo tree (Astocarpus incisa). People cut pieces from this
tree for charms against disease and misfortune, until Father Salazar
ordered that the trunk should be its pedestal. In an early rebellion
the Chinese insurgents threw the statue into the fire. Flames were
all about it, yet not a hair, not a thread of lace was singed, and
the body of brass was unmarked by smoke. Angered at this defiance
of their power, a Chinaman stabbed it in the face, and, curiously,
the wound remains to this day in protest against the savagery that
incited it. When for a second time the Virgin passed unscathed through
a conflagration the Spanish infantry bore her on their shoulders about
the streets, shouting in the joy of her protection. A galleon having
been endangered by rocks and bars in Manila Bay, the captain borrowed
this statue, prayed that it would secure the safety of his ship, and,
to the wonder of all, his vessel rode proudly up to the city gates, for
the Virgin had ordered that the rocks should sink deeper beneath the
sea. Twice afterward she did a like service to captains who borrowed
the figure as a safeguard on the long voyage to Mexico and back,
for each time she suppressed great storms. At the time of the assault
on Manila by the Dutch she assisted in the defeat of the strangers,
though St. Mark was associated with her in the victory. He had told
the governor in a dream that success should attend the Spanish arms
if his people would carry the Virgin into the fight. This was done,
and the Dutch lost three ships with their cargoes. She was finally
domiciled in the town of Antipolo, which, beside being famous as a
shrine, has been one of the most noted resorts for brigands in the
Philippines. The village of four thousand people subsists largely on
the money spent by pilgrims to her church.

Every family in the Christian communities has a little statue
of the Virgin or of a patron saint, to which prayers are
addressed. Occasionally as much as a thousand dollars will be paid
for one of these images, for some have more power than others. When
Tondo caught fire and was reduced to ashes, the houses of mat and
bamboo burning like paper, one thing alone survived the flames:
a wooden statue of Mary. This token of a special watch upon the
figure immediately raised its importance, and it was attired in the
dress and ornaments of gold in which it may now be seen. Not all the
domestic saints are brilliantly dressed or originally expensive. One
Filipino family worshipped a portrait of Garibaldi that adorned the
cover of a raisin box, while a native elsewhere was found on his
knees before a picture from an American comic paper that represented
President Cleveland attired as a monk and wearing a tin halo. Both
of these pictures had been placed on altars, and candles were burned
before them.

Another statue of great power is in the church at Majajay. It was sent
there from Spain in charge of the friars, and is especially besought
by invalids, for it is a general belief that whosoever will reach the
church with breath enough remaining in him to recite certain prayers
before this image shall have fresh lease of life; yea, though he were
at his last gasp.

Some of the attacks made on the friars in the Philippines have been
construed into attacks on the Church, but this is wrong. For the good
of the Church, no less than of the people, it is desired to purge the
islands of these ancient offenders. They have used religion as a cloak
for evil, have encouraged, in private, vices they preached against
in public, have availed themselves of famines and other distresses
to force money from the poor, and have fathered as many half-castes
as the Spanish soldiers have. As to their offspring, Filipino wives
have quieted jealous husbands by assuring them that the appearance of a
European complexion in a hitherto brown family was a special favor from
St. Peter,--a miracle ordered by the keeper of heaven as a reward for
piety and good works. Hence, one hears much of St. Peter's children
in the Philippines. Some of the white inhabitants have nevertheless
been conspicuous for virtue. Miguel Lopez de Legaspi, for example,
the first ruler of the islands, was so good that for years after his
death his body, now in the St. Augustine Monastery, Manila, underwent
no decay or change, but was like that of a man in sleep.

Alitagtag, north of Bauan, became in 1595 a resort of ghosts and
devils that congregated about a spring near the village, so that
the people were afraid to go there for water. A native headman took
wood from a deserted house, made a cross of it, and set it up near
the spring to spell away the fiends. As the people still feared,
a woman of courage ventured near the place to find that a stream of
cold, pure water was flowing from one of the arms of the cross. To
further assure the people that the evil spirits had been mastered the
cross arose from the earth and stalked about the fields, surrounded by
bright lights. Thereupon the clergy ordered that it should be adored,
and from that time it became an object of worship, healing diseases,
dispelling plagues, and killing locusts. When the priests at Bauan
announced that they intended to move the cross to Lake Bombon, the
priest of Taal, being jealous of his brothers in the other town,
hired some natives to steal it and take it to his house. No sooner
had the men assembled for this purpose than sheets of green fire fell
about the cross, defending it from their approach, and in a frenzy of
contrition they ran back, solemnly vowing that they would never make
a similar attempt again. The cross was, therefore, taken to Bauan,
where it did service for the people by terrorizing a band of pirates
and by stopping an eruption of the Taal volcano in 1611. This peak
of Taal had been a resort of devils from time immemorial, and it had
been a frequent duty of the Church to pray them into silence. In the
year just named Father Albuquerque headed a procession that ascended
the mountain for this purpose. Near the summit he paused and lifted
the cup containing the blood of Christ. Dreadful noises were heard,
like the laughter of ten thousand fiends, in vaults below. Then,
with a groan and crash, the earth split and two craters appeared,
one filled with boiling sulphur, the other with green water. The
cross was sent for. It was brought by four hundred natives. When it
was put into the priest's hands he lifted it toward the sky and all
united in prayer. During this petition, while every head was bent and
all eyes were shut, the craters softly closed and Taal was as it had
been before. Yet the demons still linger about the mountain. Not many
years ago an Englishman tunnelled the peak for sulphur. The fiends
of the volcano shook the roof down on his head and he perished. In
May it has been a custom to hold a feast in honor of this cross,
if the natives furnish the necessary candles and raise ten dollars
for the officiating priest.

Bangi, in Ilocos Norte, had a shrine in which was the image of a child
with a lamb. Herbs pressed against it would cure all diseases. For
years a dispute was carried on between clerical factions as to whether
it represented St. John the Baptist or Christ. Bishop Miguel Garcia,
having undressed it and examined it thoroughly, decided it to be a
Chinese idol. Thereupon it was broken and burned as a thing unholy.

Our Lady of Casaysay, in Batangas, is so esteemed that ships salute her
in passing. She was found by a fisherman in his net. He took her to
a cave, not knowing what to make of his strange find, and intending
to keep her there probably as a treasure not to be shared by his
neighbors. She astonished and disappointed him by proclaiming herself
with flashing lights of beautiful color and with loud music. As these
demonstrations frightened the peaceable rustics, the Virgin left her
cave, visited a native woman, spoke kindly to her, and was thereupon
provided with a shrine, where she might be adored with proper ceremony.

The statue of St. Joaquin at Gusi is remarkable because every year
it runs away and spends two weeks with its wooden wife, the figure
of St. Ann, at Molo.

Manila once had a saint that wagged its head approvingly at certain
points in the sermon. This conduct drove so many women into hysterics,
and crowded the church so dangerously with people who went to see
the miracle, that the archbishop discountenanced its action, and
ordered that it should be quiet thereafter. Quiet was easily secured
by cutting the string attached to the saint's neck. The padre was
accustomed to pull this during his discourse whenever he wished his
congregation to believe that the saints approved his eloquence or
endorsed his doctrine.

Holy water from the Conception district of Panay saves life, and San
Pascual Bailon cures barrenness. A Manila milkman who was punished
for selling watered milk expressed surprise at the complaints of his
customers, because no wrong had been committed, inasmuch as he had
used nothing but holy water, which was far superior to milk. Water
from the prison well at Iloilo was held at so high a value that the
prison-keeper made a fortune from it, as it was given out that Christ
and the Virgin had been seen bathing in the well. Our Lady of the Holy
Waters presides over the hot springs below Maquiling Mountain, an old
crater. Another popular place of pilgrimage is the shrine at Tagbauang,
near Iloilo, where illnesses are cured at a high mass in January.

One of the last recorded appearances of the Virgin was in 1884, when
a band of robbers in Tayabas killed a plantation manager, wounded
several laborers, and ransacked the house of the owner. While in one
of the bedrooms tying clothes, jewelry, and other loot into parcels
for removal, the Virgin appeared, and standing in the door looked
with severity and distress on the bandits. They immediately left
their plunder and ran pell-mell from the building. Some of these
robbers were arrested, but the Virgin had compassion on them for
leaving the proceeds of their raid, so none was garroted or even
sentenced. Some go so far as to say that the Virgin had nothing to do
with their escape from punishment, alleging that the officers of the
law had conspired with them, and that the Spanish courts were even
worse than those of a land that shall be nameless in respect of their
slowness and the facilities they offered for adjournments, retrials,
and appeals on grounds that if presented in any other cause than that
of a breaker of the law would be laughed to scorn. Filipino bandits
often wear medals of the Virgin and saints to protect them from harm,
and some are made bold by confidence in their protection. It is a
belief of theirs that they will never be punished for any crime they
may commit in Easter week, for the rather obscure reason that Christ
pardoned the thief on the cross on Good Friday.

A curious chapel on a bluff near Pasig, overlooking the river of that
name, has the form of a pagoda. It was built as a thank-offering by
a Chinaman who, having been endangered by a crocodile, and having
called on men and joss without receiving an answer, prayed volubly
to the Christians' God as he swam toward the shore, and promised to
erect a chapel in return for his life. His prayer was answered, for
the crocodile was turned to stone, and may now be seen in the bed of
the stream, while the grateful Mongol kept his word, and also joined
the church.



Bankiva, the Philippine Pied Piper


Of nearly six hundred species of birds in the Philippines the
jungle fowl, or bankiva, is best known, and is both killed and
domesticated. Unlike the dove, it does not understand human speech,
but it has a power over our kind that is exercised by no other
animal. Once a year the spirits grant to it this power of charming,
in order that both spirits and birds may be revenged on men, their
constant enemies. When that day comes the Luzon mother tremblingly
gathers her little ones about her and warns them not to leave their
door, for young ears heed the strange, sweet music of the fowl's voice,
which grown people cannot hear. On that day the bird sings with a
new note, and the flock of bankivas choose the largest, handsomest
of their number to lead the march of children. On the edge of the
village he gives his song, and every toddler runs delightedly to see
what causes the music. Babes respond with soft, cooing notes, and will
go on hands and knees if they can. They find the bankivas gathered in
a little ring, spreading their tails and wings, dancing and singing
in harmony, the head bird setting the air. When the children have
gathered, they, too, begin to dance and sing, following the birds
as they go deeper and deeper into the wood. Night falls, and with a
harsh cry the bankivas fly away in all directions. The children are
as if awakened from a sleep. They do not know where they are, and
cannot tell which way to turn. Jungles and swamps are about them,
man-eating crocodiles are watching from the water, poisonous and
strangling snakes are gliding about the brush, the pythons that loop
themselves from overhanging limbs are sometimes thrice the length of
a man. Dread and danger are on every hand. And at home the mothers
sit crying. Sometimes, though rarely, a man or woman totters back
to a village bearing marks of great age, and is sure that he or she
left there only the night before. These wanderers do not know where
they have been. They remember only that the bankiva sang sweetly, and
they followed it, as the children of Hamelin followed the pied piper.



The Crab Tried to Eat the Moon


Among the fantastic stories told of snakes, water-buffalo, birds,
and sharks are several that have obvious meaning. The crab figures in
certain of these tales as the cause of the tides. He was an enormous
creature and lived in a great hole in the bottom of a distant sea,
whence he crawled twice a day, the water pouring into the hollow then,
and leaving low water on the coast. When he settled back again the
water was forced out and the tide was high. The relation of tides to
the moon may have introduced this creature in another aspect as the
moon's enemy and cause of her eclipse, for it is related that one
evening a Filipino princess walking on a beach saw with astonishment
an island that had never been visible on the sea before. Her emotion
was that of alarm when she saw the island approach the shore, and
she hid in the shrubbery to watch. Presently she could make out,
despite the failing light, that it was no island, but a crab larger
than a hundred buffalo. Its goggling eyes were dreadful to see, its
mouth was opening fiercely, its claws working as if eager to clutch
its prey. The moon arose at the full, making a track of light across
the heaving waters, and the crab, facing east, prepared to spring and
drag it to its den beneath the ocean. Half a mile away the people
of the princess were holding a feast with songs and dances. Would
they hear a signal? She placed her conch-shell horn at her lips and
blew with all her strength. The monster still gnashed and grasped
in expectancy at the sea's edge, and a breeze brought through the
wood a faint sound of drums. Her people had not heard. Again she
blew. This time the woods were still. Her people were listening. A
third blast followed, and in a few minutes the warriors swarmed upon
the beach with knives, swords, and lances. While the princess was
explaining to them the moon's peril the crab made a leap into the air
and darkened its face, causing an eclipse, but failing to get a hold
it dropped back to the beach again, where the people fell upon it,
the princess leading the attack with the war-call of her tribe. As
the crab turned to see what had befallen, the princess slashed off
his great left claw. With the other it crushed a soldier, but again
her cresse fell and the right claw fell likewise. Then a hundred men
rushed upon the creature, prodding their spears into joints of his
legs and the dividing line between his back plate and belly. Others
fell under his great bulk or were gnashed by his iron teeth, but in
the end his shell was broken and the moon was safe. And often when
the gentle pirate of the Sulus scoured the sea he uttered a prayer
before an image of the princess for a bright night and an easy victim,
for had it not been for her the crab would have swallowed the moon,
and the sea would have been as dark as some kinds of a conscience.



The Conversion of Amambar


While roving over the waters that covered the earth the sun god
saw the nymph Ursula sporting in the waves, and was smitten with a
quick and mighty fondness. He nearly consumed himself in the ardor
of his affection. She, however, was as cold and pure as the sea. As
she swung drowsily on the billows she was like a picture painted in
foam on their blue-green depth, and in breathing her bosom rose and
fell like the waves themselves. As she saw the god descending she
was filled with alarm, but as he took her into his strong embrace
and placed his cheek to hers a new life and warmth came to her, and
in their marriage the spirits of the air and water rejoiced. A son
was born to them,--so beautiful a boy that the sun god made a land
for him, stocked it with living creatures, adorned it with greenery
and flowers, and gave it to the human race as an inheritance of joy
forever. This land he called Cebu, and no land was more lovely. Lupa
was the child, and from him came all the kings of Cebu, among them
Amambar, the first chief of the island of whom we have definite
record. In the day of his rule the group had long been peopled,
and the use of tools and weapons had become known. One occasionally
finds to-day the stone arrows and axes they called "lightning teeth,"
and with which they worked such harm to one another in their many wars.

It was an evening of March, 1521, a calm and pleasant evening,
with the perfume of flowers mixed with the tonic tang of the ocean,
birds flying and monkeys chattering in the wood, and a gentle surf
whispering upon the beach. Amambar was walking on the shore alone. He
had gone there to watch the gambols of the mermaids, when a great
light whitened against the sunset. It came from a cross that had
been planted just out of reach of the sea. He put his hands before
his eyes that it might not dazzle him. Then, as the moon arose, he
peered beneath his hands, out over the restless water, and there,
against the golden globe that was lifting over the edge of the world,
could be seen a flock of monster birds with gray wings, and dark
men walking on their backs as they lightly rode the billows, the men
sparkling and glinting as they moved, for they were arrayed in metal
and bore long knives and lances that flashed like stars. Other of
the company wore black robes and sang in unknown words, their voices
mixing in a music never heard by Amambar before. A sparkling white
cloud drooped slowly from the sky. A diamond vapor played about the
cross. Out of the cloud came a melodious voice saying, "Look up,
O chief!" And looking at the cross again, he saw, extended there,
a bleeding figure with a compassionate face that gazed down upon him
and declared, "I am Jesus Christ, son of the only God. Those whom you
see in the ships are my people, who have come to these islands to rule
you for your good." Amambar fell prone on the sand and prayed for a
long time, not daring to open his eyes. When he regained courage and
arose the cloud was gone; the ships had sailed away. He was alone.

The commander of the ships was Magellan. It was one of his monks who
had placed the cross on shore. Landing in Cebu later, he converted two
thousand of the natives in a day by destroying the statue of Vishnu and
putting that of the child Jesus in its place, though he still yielded
to savage opinion in so far as he consented to confirm his friendship
with the king by a heathen ceremony, each opening a vein in his arm
and drinking the blood of the other. As usual, the appearance and ways
of the Europeans smote the natives with wonder. They described the
strangers as enormous men with long noses, who dressed in fine robes,
ate stones (ship-bread), drank fire from sticks (pipes), and breathed
out the smoke, commanded thunder and lightning from metal tubes,
and were gods. Engaging in a wrangle between two tribes, Magellan was
lured into a marsh at Mactan, and there, while watching a battle to
see how great the Filipinos could be in war, he was slain with bamboo
lances sharpened and hardened in fire. Amambar's Christianity did
not endure, for he so wearied of the oppression and rapacity of the
strangers that when a successor to Magellan appeared he invited him
to a banquet and slew him at his meat. But the cross and the statue
of Christ worked miracles among the faithful for many generations.



The Bedevilled Galleon


    "Sing hey, sing ho! The wind doth blow,
    And I'll meet my love in the morning,"

Sang the lookout, as he paced the forecastle of the galleon Rose of
May, and peered about for signs of land against the dawn. Not that
he expected to meet his love in the morning, nor for many mornings,
but he had been up in his off-watch and was getting drowsy, so that he
sang to keep himself awake. His was one of the first among the English
ships to follow in Magellan's track. The Philippines, or the Manillas,
as they were called, had been almost reached, and it was expected
that Mindanao would be sighted at break of day off the starboard bow.

"Hello, forward!" bawled the man at the helm.

"Ay, ay!" sang the lookout.

"What d'ye make o' yonder light?"

"Light? What d'ye mean, man?" And the lookout rubbed his eyes, scanned
the water close and far, and wondered if his sight was going out.

"In the sky, o' course, ye bumble-brain."

"Now, by the mass, you costard, you gave me a twist of the inwards
with your lame joke."

"'Tis no joke. Will you answer?"

"Why, then, 'tis the daylight, in course, and you aiming for it that
steady as to drive the nose of us straight agin the sun, give he
comes up where he threats to. And he'll be here straightway, for in
these waters he comes up as he were popped outen a cohorn."

"The day! Heaven forefend! I'm holding her to the north."

"You're holding due east. Aha! Look yonder, where the cloud is
lifting. Land ho!"

"Where away?" cried a mate, roused out of a forbidden doze by this
talk, and blundering up to the roof of the after-castle.

"Port bow, sir."

"Port bow! The fiend take us! You block! You jolterhead! Where are
you fetching us?"

"I'm holding her due to the north, sir, as you bade me," faltered
the steersman. "Look for yourself, if it please you, for 'tis light
enough to read the card without the binnacle lamp. We're sailing east
by the sky and north by the needle. The ship's bedevilled!"

"Hold your peace, or you'll have the crew in a fright. Head her around
eight points to port, and keep her west by the card."

"Lights in, sir? The sun is up," called the lookout.

"Yes." And the mate added in a lower tone, "'Tis the first time ever
the sun came up in the north."

"What's all this gabble?" grumbled the captain, thrusting his red and
whiskered face out of the cabin. "Can't a man have his rest when you
keep the watch, Master Roaker?"

"Pray, captain, come and look at the compass. Do you see the lay o'
the needle? We're sailing west to hold north, or else the sun has
missed stays over night and come up in the north himself."

"Hi, hi! That's parlous odd. Keep her as you have her, and have out
Bill, the carpenter, to see if there's any iron overside. Nay, let
her off a little more, for that's a hard-looking piece of shore out
yonder, for all of the palms and green stuff."

The watch was changed presently, the captain preferring to take the
biscuit and spirits that were his breakfast on the deck. He went to
the compass every minute or so, looked curiously at the draw of the
sails and studied the water alongside. The carpenter had reported
all sound, with no iron out of place to deflect the needle. There
was a grave look on the faces of the officers, and the men talked
low together as they watched them.

"Strange-looking hill out yonder," remarked a mate. "Not a tree on it,
nor any green thing. 'Tis black and shining enough for the devil's
grave-stone."

"Have done with your gossip of devils," snorted the other mate. "You're
as evil a man for a ship's company as a whistler. You'll be calling
ill luck on us to name the fiend so often."

"Looks like shoal water forward, sir," called the new lookout.

"Right! Head her away to port yet farther. Look you, fellow, have
you no inkling of your business? You'll have us all ashore. Mary,
mother! Give me the helm!" With sweat bursting from his brow the
captain caught the tiller and put it hard over. The ship shook a bit,
swerved, yet made side-wise toward the green patch on the sea. The
land was looming large now.

"'Tis not in the rudder to keep her off, sir," called a mate who had
gone forward. "'Tis the leeway she is making."

"There's a scant breeze."

"Ay, but there must be a fearsome current."

"I see no sign of it. This water is smooth as any pond."

"But you see for yourself, she's gaining on the shore. Look, now,
how we're passing that patch o' water-weed."

"I think hell is under us. Have up the clerk and put him at prayers,
and you fellows take in sail--each rag of it--that if we strike we
may go easy. Call all hands. See that the boats are clear. She minds
her helm no more than a straw. God help us!"

The galleon was at the edge of the shoal spot now, and all held their
breath, expecting to hear the grinding of the keel on a bank; but,
no, she floated in safety.

"Sound!" commanded the captain. "There may be anchorage."

"Four fathom," called the sailor at the lead after he had made
his cast.

"Stand by to let go. We'll tie up here till the tide turns or the
spell's worked out. Alive--alive, there! Get that anchor overboard."

"It be wedged agin the bulwark, captain, and needs another pair o'
hands."

"Forward all! Why, you lump, the flukes are clear. What ails you? Lift
all. There!"

With an united heave the sailors raised the barbed iron and cast it
over the side. The faces of all dripped and went white, and their
knees bent then, for the anchor flew from their hands and struck
the sea quite twenty feet away,--in deep water, for the shoal was
passed,--and the chain paid out like rope as the iron sank, yet not
straight down. It rattled off toward the shore.

"We've had krakens and mermaids and all variety of horrid beasts,"
said one old tar, with his jaw a-shaking, "and now the foul fiend
has that anchor, and is pulling us ashore with it."

The chain had run out to its length, but the anchor had found no
bottom. A cracking and grinding of the links could be heard, as if a
tug of war were going on between two giants that had this chain between
them. Bits of rust powdered off, and the strain was tearing splinters
from the timbers. A loud snap,--the chain had parted. Down went the
anchor, but again not straight,--off toward the land, and one free
link of the chain shot as if from a gun straight toward the shore,
whizzing with ever-increasing speed until it was out of sight. The
men looked at one another in amaze.

"Get up the stores," shouted the captain, "and be ready all to quit
the ship." He added to his mates, "A half hour's the longest we can
hope for. The Rose of May will be on the black cliff by that. Is the
clerk praying? Good! We may get away in the boats, but we'll end our
days here in the Manillas. Alack, my Betsy! I'll never look into her
eyes again."

"She's down a little by the head, an't please you," cried a sailor,
running aft.

"Ease her a little, then. Toss over some of the dunnage."

"Lor'! Lor'! Spare us all this day!" yelled a sailor a minute later.

"What is it?"

"I tried to put my knife on the rail here, while I gripped the line I
was to cut, when it tugged at my hand like a live thing. In a fright
I let go, and away it flew toward the shore. Oh, we've reached the
Devil's country. Why ever did I leave England?"

"How of the compass?"

"It points steady to that rock."

"Master captain! Master captain!" shouted the steward, running upon
deck. "The fiend is in the after-castle, for the pans and the knives
and a blunderbuss and two cutlasses that were loose have leaped
against the forward panelling and stick there as if rivets were
through them. 'Tis wizard's work. Let us pray, all."

A sudden commotion was seen among the sailors at that moment. The
cannon balls had rolled forward to the break of the forecastle, and
the two guns themselves--the ship's armament against the pirates of
China and Sulu--were straining at their stays.

"Heave over the shot. It'll lighten her," ordered the captain.

The crew obeyed, but after the first of the balls had been lifted
over the bulwarks, they had scarce the strength to cast out the rest,
for amazement overcame them on seeing the shot plucked from the man's
hands and blown through the air as if sent from its gun toward the
rock. The ship was leaping through the water, though the breeze
was from the land. One after another the men fell on their knees
and prayed loudly, the captain last of all. Suddenly he looked up,
with a wondering flash in his eyes. He sprang to his feet, plucked
an iron belaying-pin from its ledge, held it up, felt it pull, let
go, and saw it whirl away like a leaf in a cyclone. He looked at the
compass; the needle pointed straight toward the black and glistening
cliff now lowering not more than half a mile ahead.

"It's the guns," he shrieked. "Up with you. Cut away the
lashings. Stave down the bulwarks. Let them go."

In the panic there was no stopping to argue or to question. The guns
were freed, and they, too, went hurtling through the air, striking
the rock with a clang. The captain leaped to the helm and put it hard
a-starboard. The ship's pace slackened, she curved gracefully around,
and headed from the threatening coast. "Shake out all sail, lads,
for we're free at last, by God's good grace."

Though trembling and confused, the sailors managed to hoist sail,
and on a gentle wind from the east they left that coast never more to
venture near it. The captain's face lost its knots and seams, by slow
degrees the color of it returned,--a color painted upon it, especially
about the nose, by many winds, much sunshine, and uncounted bottles
of strong waters. He wiped his brow and drew a big breath. "It comes
to me, now," he said. "We've not been bewitched. That hill beyond,
that's robbed us of our guns and anchor, is a magnet,--the biggest
in the world."

In an earthquake, several years later, the magnet-mountain disappeared.



Two Runaways from Manila


The name Corregidor, which stands for mayor, albeit the translation
is corrector, is applied to the gateway to Manila. Thus named it was
a place to inspire a wholesome fear in the breasts of dignitaries,
for on at least two occasions proud and refractory bishops were sent
there in exile to endure a season of correction and repentance. It
was thought to be a desert. In the seventeenth century the treasure
galleon arriving at Manila, after a voyage of months from Mexico,
brought a family from that country. One of the daughters of this house
of Velez was a girl with a bit of human nature in her composition,
for Maria was prone to flirting, and had no affection for sermons. In
order to repress her high spirits and love of mischief, she was sent
by her father to the convent of Santa Clara, which had been founded
in 1621 (a few years before this incident). The parent even hoped
that she might qualify as a nun.

It was not the right convent, for Fray Sanchez, one of the fathers,
who said the offices in the chapel, was a Franciscan friar, young,
handsome, and not an ascetic. The novice was always prompt when he
said mass, and often when her pretty head should have been bowed in
prayer she was peeping over the edge of her breviary, following the
graceful motions of the brother as he shone in full canonicals in the
candle-light, and thrilling at the sound of his rich, low voice. The
priest several times caught the glance of those eyes, so black,
so liquid, saw the long fringe of lashes fall across them, saw the
face bend behind the prayer-book in a vain endeavor to hide a flush,
realized what a pretty face it was, and went to his cell with a vague
aching at his heart. He sought Maria among the pupils to give spiritual
advice, or she sought him to ask it,--it little matters,--and so the
first full moon looked into a corner of the convent garden and saw,
despite the swaying shadow of vines and palms, that the friar was
making confession to the nun,--a confession of love. The face that
had peered above the prayer-book was lifted to his, a white arm stole
about his neck: it was the answering confession. The priest strained
her to his breast and half stifled her with kisses.

These raptures were interrupted by the retiring bell, and they hastily
returned to the convent by separate ways. It was the last night they
expected to spend beneath that roof, for a galleon was to sail for
Mexico in a day or two, and they had agreed to elope. Dressed in
worldly garb, which she concealed under the robe and cowl of a monk,
Maria slipped through the garden gate next day, met her lover, ran to
the shore, where a boat had been tied, crossed with him to Camaya,
the ship being promised there for a fag end of cargo, and prayed
for a quick departure from the Philippines. In vain. They fell into
the hands of unfriendly natives, who, having learned to distrust the
Spanish, were always ready to wreak small injuries on them when the
chance afforded. These natives attempted to separate the pair and
drag the girl to their huts. The friar attacked them with spirit,
but the brown men were too many for him, and in the melee both he
and Maria were wounded.

A boat was seen approaching. The assailants fled, leaving the friar,
bleeding and weak, but kneeling beside his mistress, whose white
skin was splashed and striped with red, and whose liquid eyes stared
vacantly at the sky. As the boat touched the shore the corregidor
leaped from it, and the friar now confronted a new peril. His flight
had been discovered, the town-crier had bawled it through the streets,
commanding the people to refuse shelter to the guilty pair under
heavy penalty, and, to enforce their return, the mayor had brought
with him twelve soldiers of the garrison. The loaded arquebuses of
the men were not needed. Feeble, sore in body and spirit, repentant,
the monk surrendered, Maria was lifted into the boat, and the company
returned to Manila.

There it was decided that the monk should be sent to an inland mission,
that in the lifting of souls to a finer faith the stain of human
love that had fallen upon his own soul might be wiped away. As to
the girl, her good looks and gay disposition had proved the undoing
of one devotee. She was to have no chance to enslave another; so she
was sent back to Mexico, forced to enter a cloistered nunnery, and
so ended her life in loneliness and sanctity. The incident has left
its impress on the names about the harbor, Corregidor being so called
for the officer who pursued and arrested the runaways, Camaya being
rechristened Mariveles,--which, you see, is Maria Velez,--while two
rocks beyond the Boca Grande are named for the friar and his would-be
bride,--Fraile and Monja: monk and nun.



The Christianizing of Wong


In the city of Cebu the Chinese, who made an early settlement,
accepted the prevalent religion in order to keep peace with the
authorities. In fact, it was a choice between going to church and
going back to China. Incidentally to their evangelization a number
of them were cast into prison, their shops and houses were rifled,
and laws were enacted denying rights and privileges to all Mongols
who refused Christian baptism. Among the refractory citizens was a
Chinese trader named Wong. So far as anybody could see, he led as
moral a life as a Chinaman can endure comfortably; he was good to his
family, good to himself, he was sober, he would overreach a Spaniard
when he could, but when he had given his word he kept it; he burned
incense before joss, he read the analects of Kung Foo Too and Mang
Tse, and worshipped his ancestors; he never stole or used any kind of
profanity that moral Spaniards could understand. For all this he was
nagged and worried constantly, and could hardly take a walk without
being pursued by friars who requested alms for their charities in so
pointed a manner that he contributed with celerity, if with an inward
lack of willingness. If he had been an every-day Chinaman he would
have been killed, or prisoned, or exiled, or deported, but he had an
excellent trade, and, in spite of his enforced outlays for masses and
missionaries, was growing richer all the time. The customs officers
thrived on the duties that he paid, and waxed exceeding fat.

One elderly priest in Cebu had a genuine concern for the welfare
of this prosperous but benighted soul. He called at his shop, he
barred his way in the street, he argued, he cited, he appealed,
but to no effect. Wong answered that, although a heathen, he was
doing a better business than any one else; so what was the use of
changing gods? And with a heart-deep sigh he requested the clergyman
to change the subject. Seeing, at last, that all customary methods
of conversion were doomed to failure, the friar betook himself
to the shrine of St. Nicholas, and asked him to do something that
should turn this poor soul to the faith. St. Nicholas praised his
petitioner's zeal, and promised to work a miracle. The friar possessed
his soul in patience, and the conversion came that very week. Wong was
assailed in his office by five robbers, armed with knives and daubed
with blood, to show that they intended neither to give nor ask for
quarter. He had sold many goods that day, and they had come for his
money. Wong reached for the sword that always hung within his grasp,
but to his dismay it was gone. St. Nicholas or the friar had hidden
it. He glanced rapidly about the room, but saw nothing that he could
oppose to the knives of the desperadoes, and even if he had, they were
five to one, so his escape from a cruel death seemed impossible. Just
then the robbers were struck into a stupor, for on the wall behind
the merchant a light was shining, and soft music floated through
the room. The partition opened, and St. Nicholas stepped within the
apartment. Turning to the Chinaman the visitant said, "Believe in the
true faith, Wong, and your life shall be saved. Believe otherwise,
and you shall die." Wong changed his faith in one second, and said
so. The saint waved his hand toward the ruffians and they dropped to
the floor in a faint, whereupon Wong, plucking the knife from the
hand of the nearest, carefully but expeditiously and joyfully cut
the throats of all five, called in his neighbors and persuaded them
to join the church with him. They did this almost immediately, and
the most popular saint among the Chinese of Cebu is still St. Nicholas.



The Devil's Bridge


You may say what you please, but it is certain that the Evil One
never appeared in the Philippines until after the Spanish had taken
possession of the islands. At least, this applies to Luzon. And,
strange to tell, he has not been seen there since the Spanish
left. Some will have it that he was smitten into a despairing
bashfulness during Weyler's administration, and that when the governor
went home with a couple of million dollars in his valise--the savings
from his salary--the Devil went home likewise, awe-struck. His Satanic
Majesty's last recorded exploit occurred in the view of three men,
of whom one may still be alive to vouch for it. They were farmers
of Wild Laguna, a few miles above Manila, and on one memorable day
were cutting wood in the ravine near by,--a deep gulch through which
babbles a stone-choked stream. This glen has precipitous sides, but is
so thickly overhung with green that it is almost like a verdant cave.

While they were resting--and the Filipino's ability to rest is one of
his striking qualities--they were startled by the hurried advance of
something, or somebody, on the bank. There was a swish and crash of
undergrowth, a hobbling stamp, and something that sounded like the
smiting of leaves with a club. At first the farmers thought that a
water buffalo had run away from some plantation and was angry because
he could not descend the craggy sides and reach the water. Then came
a volley of expletives in an unknown tongue, and in a voice so deep
and harsh that the hair of the three heads bristled, and three pairs
of eyes goggled with fright. The farmer who was good crossed himself;
the one who was bad turned white and tried to remember how prayers
were said; the one who was betwixt-and-between clung to the stone on
which he was seated and held his breath; for a tall, lank personage,
with overhanging brows, slanting eyes, long chin and nose, and
wrathful aspect, was striding to and fro on the edge of the ravine,
looking at the opposite bank as if trying to decide whether or not
he could leap that distance. He was scowling, gnashing his teeth,
and brandishing his arms. Any Spaniard might have done as much,
and brandished a sword besides; but the terrible thing about this
gentleman was the great length of tail, with a dart at its tip, that
he was flourishing among the bushes, for only one being, on the earth
or under it, was known to have a toil like that.

As if to leave no doubt, the stranger, in stamping on the ground,
lifted his leg so high that the watchers could see that it ended,
not in a foot, but a hoof. It was Satan himself! The farmers did
not dare to tremble, but each shrank within himself as far as he
could and thought upon his sins, the worst of the trio with the least
compunction, because he was not conscious of any immorality in robbing
Spaniards. As he tramped back and forth, the devil now and then looked
up into the branches, as if guessing the height of the trees. Presently
he stopped before the tallest, levelled his finger at it, and cried
with a stentorian voice a command in words that belong to none of the
forty or fifty languages and dialects of the islands. Then the souls of
the spectators fell, like chilling currents, and their hearts swelled
like balloons and arose into their throats, and there was no joy in
them; for the great tree bent slowly down and swung itself entirely
across the chasm. Its reach was great, and Satan skipped along the
trunk as spryly as a cat on a fence, his arms and tail held out for
balance and twitching nervously. Half-way over he spied the three
spectators and stopped. Their circulation stopped also. He grinned
from ear to ear, showing two rows of tusk-like teeth, shook his fist
playfully, and shouted a laugh so loud, so awful, that they believed
their last moment had come. But it had not. Their hair turned white,
to be sure, and they took on fifty years' growth of wrinkles; but the
Devil was after bigger game. He scampered over the arching trunk,
disappeared on the farther side, and hurried off at a run toward
Manila, where a certain rich lawyer was rumored to be dying. From
later whisperings it appears that His Majesty was not late.

The strange part of the incident is that, although the tree was thus
ill-used to serve the Devil's convenience, and is marked along its
bark by his cloven feet, it was not blasted, but to this hour is
green and flourishing. The Devil's Bridge, as everybody calls it,
is an arboreal wonder, curving lightly and gracefully over the chasm,
its branches resting on the bank opposite to its root, some of them
growing upside down, but all as green and healthy as those of any
tree that the Devil spared when he was looking for a way to cross
the ravine. Had he waded the stream he not only would have wet his
feet, which would have been unpleasant, but would have touched water
that had once been blessed, and that would have been torture. The bad
farmer did not survive this spectacle by many years, though it is not
related that he reformed. The fair-to-middling one lasted for a while
longer. The good one may yet be in the land of the living, unless he
enlisted under Aguinaldo, which is not likely, because old men cannot
run fast enough to be effective members of the Filipino army.



The Great Earthquake


After months of fighting, Li Ma Hong, the Chinese pirate, and his six
thousand followers had been beaten out of Philippine waters. Manila
was celebrating the victory on this last night of November, 1645. The
church bells had been clanging and chiming, the windows had been
lighted, flags and pennants had streamed from the house-tops, sounds
of music and cries of rejoicing were heard, a thousand fairy lamps
starred the darkness and quivered in the Pasig. The flag of Spain had
been carried through the streets in solemn procession, the cathedral
altar had smoked with incense, the friars had chanted the "Te Deum,"
but now all was gayety and music and perfume. A ball was among the
festivities, and military and civic officers, pranked in the lace
and bullion so dear to the Latins, were going through the narrow
ways with their ladies on their arms. Taking no part in the joyous
hurly-burly, two men walked apart, near the cathedral, in talk. One
was a father in the church; the other, secretary and major-domo of the
governor. The calling of the one, the age and dignity of the other,
to say nothing of an old wound that gave a hitch and drag to his step,
forbade their mingling with the throng.

The secretary spoke: "No, father, I hardly agree with your view. That
heaven has been on our side I admit, since we have conquered the
infidels, seized their treasure, and strewn their corpses on our
shores. But that the blessed St. Francis interposes in our behalf,
I doubt."

"This is dangerous doctrine,--a reflection on our order. We have
prayed daily for the success of the Spanish arms, and although we
addressed the Virgin and all the saints, the statue of St. Francis
is the only one that moved while we were at prayer----"

"With your eyes on the ground?"

"The sacristan saw it. Furthermore, let me tell you that the figure
of the saint owned by the worthy Indian, Alonzo Cuyapit, at his house
in Dilao, was stirred to tears last night."

"Tears! For victory?"

"I fear, for some reason worthy of tears."

"And your imaginations have nothing to do with all this? Men who are
wasted with vigils and fasting"--here the secretary chuckled and made
as if he would nudge the churchman in his ample paunch--"are prone
to see what common men cannot. Though I protest that when I eat much
cheese before retiring I have visions, too. But not always holy ones."

The priest answered with gravity, "A life of devotion does clear the
vision. It opens the gates of heaven. I fear, señor, that too many in
this doubting age are affected like you,--that a study of philosophy
and ungodly sciences has harmed your respect for the saints and
the church."

"By no means, father. All I maintain is that the figure of St. Francis
was not seen in the thick of the battle, as some of the friars
allege. Good sooth! What do they know of battle? Our victories were
won by stout Spanish arms and good Toledo steel. All praise to Heaven
that we had the power."

The priest shook his head and sighed. Then he looked curiously into
the sky. The stars were shining, save in the south, where lightning
flickered in a bank of cloud, and there was no threat of storm. Yet
in the air was a curious stagnation that had fallen within the hour
and brooded over the city like a palpable thing. It was hot and close
and lifeless; stale smells from the streets reeked into the nostrils,
and from the Pasig came a heavy, sickish odor of river vegetation.

"Sometimes it fills me with a fear that Heaven has a punishment in
store for us," said the priest, stopping in his walk and looking
meditatively into the distance, where the lightning now played more
brightly. "We have grown worldly. We have thought less of serving God
by our wars than of increasing our power and importance in the eyes
of the nations. We have grown proud. We are in danger of losing our
piety. Pray that the wrath do not fall."

"With all my heart,--especially to-night. Your blessing, father. And
sound sleep."

It was the last time that these friends were to walk together. It was
the last time in many a day when Manila would be in gala. At midnight
the greasy calm that lay on the sea was broken by a breeze which
ruffled the water and made a pleasant stir in the trees ashore. It
eased the sultriness of the night and brought rest to many who had been
tossing on their beds, excited doubtless by the shows and dissipations
of the last few hours. Presently the sleepers were roused again, for
the wind was rising steadily; the trees were writhing and wringing
their branches in what was surely going to be a gale. The lightning
was near. A growl of thunder could be heard. The clock boomed the hour
of two. Out of an intense dark leaped a bolt of green fire, and the
air was filled with baying and cannonade. Almost at the moment the
earth began to rock. The city awoke. The rocking increased. Roofs
began to fall, walls to bulge, masonry to split and sway.

"The earthquake! The earthquake!" screamed a thousand voices, and
with cries and lamenting the people hurried into the streets and
fell on their knees or their faces, unable to stand on the waving,
trembling ground. It was an hour of terror. All lights were blown
out by the storm or extinguished in the fall of houses, save one or
two of baleful meaning that flickered above roofs which had caught
fire. The sea could be heard advancing toward the land with tremendous
roaring, driving up the channel of the Pasig and overspreading its
banks on either side, while far below, and most dreadful of all,
the fall could be heard of pieces of the earth's crust into pits
of fire and the vast rumble and groan of a world. Houses crumbled,
people were pressed to death and maimed in the blackness, streets
cracked asunder, trees were uprooted, chaos was come again.

In the morning the survivors looked upon a scene of ruin worse than
any wrought by the pirates. The sanctity of the cathedral had not saved
it. Of its imposing walls hardly anything remained. A heap of masonry
marked its place. Every public building was destroyed. Wretches hurt
to the death were pinned under fallen stones and timbers, and many,
willing enough to relieve them, were too dazed and agonized by their
own pains and misfortunes to pull their wits together. Spain had
enjoyed her triumphs. Now her calamities had begun.

On the night before the catastrophe, Alonzo Cuyapit, a rich Indian
of Dilao, a suburb of the city, and his friend, the chaplain of the
San Francisco Convent, were at prayers together before a statue of
St. Francis, that was the Indian's dearest pride. He had shrined it
fittingly in his home, with flowers and candles about it, and adored
it daily. The statue was of life-size, the work of an adept carver;
was brilliantly painted and gemmed, and had about the neck a rosary
from which hung a cross of polished gold. So many miracles of healing
had been performed by this figure that its renown had gone through
all Luzon.

While Cuyapit and the chaplain were on their knees a tremor shook
the floor. Slight earthquakes of this kind were not unusual. Though
the walls of the house rattled, the statue remained fixed and
still. Another jar was felt in the ground, and raising their hands
to the saint, the petitioners begged him fervently to intercede
against a dangerous shock. Presently they lifted their eyes, and were
struck dumb with amazement, for the statue had unclasped its hands,
the one pointing toward Manila, as if in warning; the other holding
the golden cross toward heaven, as if in an appeal for mercy. A
halo, so bright as to dazzle the beholders, played about the head,
the lips moved, and from the upturned eyes tears trickled down the
cheeks. Cuyapit and the priest arose and tried to stanch these tears,
but the cloth they used was soon as wet as if they had just taken it
from the river. Then the statue raised its arms high over its head,
as in a last appeal for mercy to the world, while the tears gushed
in such a stream that they made a continuous fall to the floor. A
look of horror wrung the face, as if the prayer had been refused;
and, extending its hands in benediction, the saint toppled from his
pedestal and was broken into fragments.

When these occurrences had been told by Cuyapit in the Church of San
Francisco, under an oath before the Virgin, the pieces were carried
in reverential procession to Manila, and the miracle of San Francisco
of the Tears is accepted there as history.



Suppressing Magic in Manila


Crowds of all kinds are easily swayed, but it is said that nowhere
is it so easy to rouse a panic or a revolution as in Manila. Several
times during the earlier months of the American occupation vague
fears spread through the city, people ran to their homes or locked
themselves in their shops in terror, lights were put out, armed guards
were posted; then, after a few hours, everybody asked everybody else
what the matter had been, and nobody knew.

In 1820 a strange scene was enacted in the Philippine capital. People
assembled in groups at evening and whispered mysteriously. Gowned
friars moved from group to group, but whether encouraging or
expostulating it was impossible for one to say, unless he understood
Spanish or Tagalog. The captain of an American ship that was taking
on its load of hemp reported to a neighbor captain, who sailed
under the cross of St. George, that there had been a violation of
the government order against the importing of Protestant Bibles and
pocket-pistols,--two things taboo in the country at that time. This,
however, may have been the Yankee captain's joke. As the night deepened
torches were seen flitting hither and thither, the crowds thickened,
the whispers and hushed talk increased by degrees to a widespread,
menacing growl, then arose to a roar. Now drums were heard in
the barracks, and the light, quick tread of marching feet could be
distinguished through the babble of voices. The mob was slowly wedging
itself into one of the streets before an inn, and just at the doors
of that hostelry the noise was loudest and most threatening.

Presently came a crash. The building had been entered. Instantly
there were shouts and cries, and the throng seemed fairly to boil
with anger. In the light of candles that shone through windows
the faces lifted toward the tavern were drawn and wolfish. Shots
were heard. The mob was shaken, as a wood is shaken by a gale, but
there was no retreat. There could be none. The people were packed too
densely. Now a glint of bayonets was seen at one end of the street, and
some sharp orders rang out. This was more effective. The throng began
to thin away at the farther end, and those nearest to the soldiers
attempted to break through the line, loudly declaring that they were
merely spectators, and did not know what had happened. But in another
moment everybody knew. Two dark shapes were passed out at the inn door,
and were, in some fashion, pushed along over the heads of the multitude
to its freer edge. These shapes had recently been men. With ropes about
their necks they were dragged at a run through the streets. More houses
were attacked. Other forms were found lying on the earth, pulseless,
bloody, after the mob had passed. The military was, seemingly, unable
to head it off or give effective chase. Flames now lighted various
quarters of the city, and shots were frequently heard. It was a night
of terror. History speaks of it as a night of rioting. Many declare
that it was a St. Bartholomew massacre, on a smaller scale, and that
the Protestants who were killed that night were put to death at the
instigation of the friars. Tradition relates that when the sun arose
the people, numbering thousands, marched in triumph through the city,
following a dozen of their number who bore in their hands the phials in
which two French naturalists, recently landed in Luzon, had preserved
a number of snakes and insects for their scientific collection.

There was the mischief,--in those jars and bottles. Nobody would put
a serpent or a scorpion into alcohol except for some grim purpose,
and that purpose could be nothing other than black magic. Hence the
raid on the inn; hence the killing of the naturalists and of other
people suspected of complicity or sympathy with forbidden arts;
hence the state of education of Luzon.



Faith that Killed


Back in the 30's an emigrant of some account arrived in Manila. He was
a young doctor of medicine who had just won his sheepskin in Salamanca,
and had been persuaded that there was small hope of a living for
him in a province where the people were too poor to be ill and too
lazy to die. The Philippines had been suggested as a promising field
for his practice, and realizing that he needed practice he made the
long journey around Good Hope and reached the Luzon capital nearly
penniless, but full of gratitude and expectancy. Having secured
lodgings, to which he at once affixed his shingle, he sallied forth to
see the town and its people, and one of the first of its inhabitants
to claim his attention, though she claimed it unwittingly, was a
girl of the lower class who was walking along the street with an
easy, elastic step, and in seeming health, yet who was evidently
suffering from a hemorrhage, for at every few paces she paused and
spat blood. Her bearing and expression were in odd contrast with her
peril, for she seemed indifferent to the danger.

Prompted by compassion as well as by a professional interest,
the physician followed the invalid, expecting at every moment to
see her fall or hear her beg for help, his wonder at the stoicism
and endurance of the Filipino growing constantly. When she reached
her home, an humble house in a poor quarter of the city, he begged
immediate audience with her parents, who were, unfortunately,
acquainted with the Spanish tongue, and told them it was his duty to
warn them that the girl had not twenty-four hours to live; that she
was afflicted with a mortal illness; that a priest should be called
at once. The girl's cheeks were ruddy, she was in good spirits, and
the old people were inclined to resent the warning as a joke, being an
exceeding poor one. The visitor explained that he was a medical man,
that he was actuated by the most charitable of motives, that he would
do everything in his power to delay the fatal ending of the disease,
but that restoration to health was impossible.

When this dreadful news was broken to the girl she had a violent fit
of weeping, then hysterics, then a long fainting spell, and sank into a
decline so swift that the parents were in despair. Neighbors flocked in
to offer condolences and comforts; a priest received the young woman's
confession and performed the last rites; the doctor plied his patient
with drugs, fomentations, and stimulants; father, mother, and friends
groaned, prayed, and tore their hair. All the time the poor creature
sank steadily, the color left her face, her breath grew labored,
and as night fell the doctor's warning was fulfilled,--she was dead.

In a single day the fame of this wonderful physician spread through
all the city, and people flocked to his lodging with money and
diseases. He was dazzled at the prospect of riches. After three or
four years of this kind of thing, if the tax man did not hear too
much of his success, he could return to Spain and live in comfortable
retirement. Alas! for human hopes, he returned sooner than he had
intended. A few days after the death of his first patient somebody
asked how he forecast her fate so exactly.

"It was easy enough,--she spat blood," he answered.

"Are you sure it was blood?"

"Certainly. It was red."

"Ah, señor, every one spits red in Manila."

"Bah!"

"Oh, it is true! Everybody chews the buyo leaf, which is like the
betel of India, that you have heard of, just as everybody smokes in
Luzon. The juice of the buyo is red."

Then the doctor realized that he had killed his patient by making
her believe she was doomed to die, and with the earnings of his brief
career in the Philippines he bought a passage back to Spain in the same
ship that had carried him to the East. So, if you hear that a person
is ill, but if your informant winks and says that he is spitting red,
you may believe that the invalid will be out after a good sleep and
a little bromide.



The Widow Velarde's Husband


Enchanted Lake, near Los Baños, on the Pasig, fills an ancient crater
and is an object of natural interest. Its enchantment, so far as is
generally known, consists in the visits of Widow Velarde's husband to
its shores, and his occasional moonlight excursions over its waters
in a boat that has the same pale green shine as himself. This Velarde
was a fisherman and being somewhat of a gallant he had roused the
mortal jealousy of his wife. In revenge for his supposed slights she
engaged two of his friends to confer on her the joys of widowhood,
which they agreed to do for a consideration. The amount promised was
six dollars, but the preliminary negotiations appear to have been
hasty, for when these worthies had earned the money, having held the
unfortunate Velarde under the water until he ceased to bubble, the
thrifty woman wanted them to accept three dollars apiece. They held
stoutly for six dollars apiece. The widow would not pay it. There
was a long and undignified wrangle,--disputes over funeral bills
are often warranted, but are seldom seemly,--and it ended in the
angry departure of the fishermen, without even their three dollars,
to lodge a complaint against the Widow Velarde for cheating.

Now, would you suppose that two men, having just murdered a
fellow-creature, would go to a magistrate to complain about the
payment? These Filipinos did it. They went to a judge at Los Baños and
tried to get an order for the woman's arrest. The judge, fancying this
must be a kind of joke peculiar to Luzon, said he would think over the
matter, and he resumed his slumbers. In a day or two he learned that
the men had really killed their companion, and had fallen out with the
widow on the matter of terms. They meanwhile had learned that their
act was contrary to white man's law and had escaped, though it is said
they were afterward caught and put to death. Perhaps it is the disquiet
caused by the reflection that he was worth no more than six dollars
that leads the extinguished husband to vex the scene of his demise.



The Grateful Bandits


Monsieur de la Gironiere, a French planter and trader, who visited the
Philippines a lifetime ago, or more, told stories of the islands and
their people that are taken in these days with a lump of salt. Among
these narrations is one pertaining to the bandits who in the first
years of the nineteenth century were numerous and troublesome
on several of the islands, and who were alternately harassed and
befriended by the officials,--chased when they had money and well
treated when they had parted with most of it to cool the sweating palms
of authority. Gironiere was visiting the cascades of Yang Yang when
he found himself surrounded by brigands who were chattering volubly
and pointing to his horses. They did not at first offer violence, but
presently he understood that soldiers were in chase of them, and they
were considering whether it would not be wise to kill the horses, lest
the troop, on its arrival, should seize them to aid in the pursuit.

Gironiere could not afford horses often. He eagerly assured the
thieves that he would not give his nags to the military; that he
would, on the contrary, depart by the road over which he had come,
in order to avoid meeting the soldiers, and this promise he made on
the honor of a gentleman. The leader of the brigands saluted, and
the Frenchman drove away, as he had agreed, the thieves watching him
until he was out of sight. For months after this incident he had no
trouble with the natives. His household goods, his garden products,
his poultry were spared. Some years later, when he had definitely
cast his fortunes with the Spaniards, he accepted a commission as
captain of the horse guards at Laguna, and it then became his duty
to trouble the very robbers who once had spared him. Their fighting
was usually open, and, as the marksmanship on both sides was the
very worst, it was seldom that anybody was hurt. Truces were made,
as in honorable war, and the leaders corresponded with one another
as to terms of battle or surrender. One unofficial document received
by Gironiere cautioned him to look out for himself, as there was one
in the bandit ranks who was ungrateful. "Beware of Pedro Tumbaga," it
said. "He has ordered us to take you by surprise in your house. This
warning is in payment for your kindness at the cascades. You kept
your word. We are ready to fight you now, as you would fight us;
but we don't strike in the back. Tumbaga will shoot you from hiding."

Gironiere was a crafty person, likewise a cautious one. He knew where
to send an answer to this epistle, and he sent it: "You are brave men,
and I thank you. I do not fear Tumbaga, for he is a coward. How can
you keep among you a man who would shoot another in the back?" Just
look at that for slyness! And the message had the effect he desired
and expected. Some brave bandit got behind a tree a couple of weeks
afterward and shot a bullet through Tumbaga. Thus was the power of
the brigands weakened, the safety of Gironiere assured, and good
feeling re-established between the law and its habitual breakers.



                            THE END



By Charles M. Skinner


Myths and Legends of Our Own Land Illustrated. Two volumes in a
box. 12mo. Buckram, $3.00; half calf or half morocco, $6.00

Myths and Legends Beyond Our Borders Illustrated. 12mo. Buckram,
$1.50; half calf or half morocco, $3.00

Myths and Legends of Our New Possessions and
Protectorate. Illustrated. 12mo. Buckram, $1.50; half calf or half
morocco, $3.00

_Myths and Legends Beyond Our Borders and Myths and Legends of Our
New Possessions and Protectorate._ Two volumes in a box. Buckram,
$3.00; half calf or half morocco, $6.00


With Feet to the Earth

_New Edition, Enlarged_

Illustrated. 12mo. Cloth, ornamental, $1.50

Do-Nothing Days

Illustrated. 12mo. Cloth, ornamental, $1.50

Flowers in the Pave

Illustrated. 12mo. Cloth, ornamental, $1.50





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