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Title: Among the Head-Hunters of Formosa
Author: McGovern, Janet B. Montgomery
Language: English
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*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "Among the Head-Hunters of Formosa" ***

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(_See page 149._)]



  _Diplomée in Anthropology, University of Oxford_


  R. R. MARETT, M.A., D.Sc.





  _First published in 1922_

  (_All rights reserved_)


  W. M. M.


 “No human thought is so primitive as to have lost bearing on our own
 thought, or so ancient as to have broken connection with our own life.”

    E. B. TYLOR, _Primitive Culture_.


To treat her as a goddess has always been accounted a sure way of
winning a lady’s favour. To the cynic, therefore, it might seem that
Mrs. McGovern was bound to speak well of her head-hunting friends of
the Formosan hills, seeing that they welcomed her with a respect that
bordered on veneration. But of other head-hunters, hailing, say, from
Borneo or from Assam, anthropologists have reported no less well, and
that though the investigators were accorded no divine honours. The
key to a just estimate of savage morality is knowledge of all the
conditions. A custom that considered in itself is decidedly revolting
may, on further acquaintance with the state of culture as a whole, turn
out to be, if not praiseworthy, at least a drawback incidental to a
normal phase of the ruder life of mankind.

The “grizzled warrior,” we are told, who made oblation to our
authoress, bore on his chin the honourable mark of the man-slayer. To
her Chinese coolie that formidable badge would have been enough to
proclaim the wearer _seban_--the kind of wicked animal that defends
itself when attacked. Thus, if it merely served to warn an invading
alien to keep his distance, this crude advertisement of a head-hunting
habit would be justified, from the standpoint of the survival of
the hard-pressed aborigines. Even had a threat of cannibalism been
thrown in, its protective value could hardly be denied; for, much as
men object to be killed, they commonly deem it worse to be killed
and eaten. Though reputed to be man-eaters, however, the savages of
Formosa are not so in fact. Indeed, the boot is on the other foot. I
remember Mr. Shinji Ishii telling us at a meeting of the Folk-lore
Society that, despite their claim to a higher form of civilization,
the Chinese of the adjoining districts will occasionally partake of
a head-hunter, chopped up small and disguised in soup: the principle
implied in the precaution being, I dare say, sound enough, namely, that
of inoculation, though doubtless the application is unfortunate.

Meanwhile, head-hunting has for these wild-folk a function and
significance that are not to be understood so long as we consider it
as a thing apart. The same canon of interpretation holds good of any
other outstanding feature of the social life. Customs are the organic
parts of a body of custom. To use a technical expression, they are
but so many elements composing a single “culture-complex.” Modern
research is greatly concerned with the tracing out of resemblances
due to the spread of one or another system of associated customs. The
method is to try to work back to some ethnic centre of diffusion;
where the characteristic elements of the system, whatever might have
been their remoter derivation, have been thoroughly fused together,
in the course of a long process of adaptation to a given environment.
Thereupon it becomes possible to follow up the propagation of influence
as it radiates from this centre in various directions outwards. Now
it may well be that the tradition rarely, or never, is imparted in
its entirety. Selection, or sheer accident, will cause not a little
to be left behind. On the other hand, the chances are all against one
custom setting forth by itself. Customs tend to emigrate in groups.
Thus head-hunting, and a certain mode of tattooing, and the institution
of the skull-shelf, and the requirement that a would-be husband must
display a head as token of his prowess, are on the face of them
associated customs, and such as are suited to have been travelling
companions. Hence it is for the ethnologist to see whether he cannot
refer the whole assortment to some intrusive culture of Indonesian or
other origin.

Yet lest one good method should corrupt the science, we should not
forget that there is another side to the study of culture; though from
this side likewise there is equal need to examine customs, not apart,
but in their organic connexion with each other. Whencesoever derived,
the customs of a people have an ascertainable worth here and now for
those who live by them. The first business, I should even venture to
say, of any anthropologist, be his sphere the study or the field, is
to seek to appreciate a given culture as the expression of a scheme
of values. Every culture represents a set of means whereby it is
sought to realize a mode of life. Unconsciously for the most part,
yet none the less actually, every human society pursues an ideal. To
grasp this ideal is to possess the clue to the whole cultural process
as a spiritual and vital movement. The social inheritance is subject
to a constant revaluation, bringing readaptation in its train. There
is a selective activity at work, and to apprehend its secret springs
one must keep asking all the time, what does this people want, and
want most? unconscious though it may largely be, the want is there.
Correspondingly, since it is a question of getting into touch with a
latent process, the anthropologist must employ a method which I can
only describe as one of divination. He must somehow enter into the
soul of a people. Introjection, or in plainer language sympathy, is
the master-key. Objective methods so-called are all very well; but
if, as sometimes happens, they lead one to forget that anthropology
is ultimately the science of the inner man, then they but batter at a
closed door.

A sure criterion, then, by which to appraise any account of a savage
people consists in the measure of the sympathy shown. A summary sketch
that has this saving quality will be found more illuminating than
many volumes of statistics. Literally or otherwise, the student of
wild-folk must have undergone initiation at their hands. Having become
as one of themselves, he is qualified to act as their spokesman,
putting into such words as we can understand the felt needs and
aspirations of a less self-conscious type of humanity. Here, for
instance, Mrs. McGovern, though writing for the general public, and
reserving a full digest of her material for another work, has sought
to present an insider’s version of the aboriginal life of Formosa. She
was willing to become an initiate, and did in fact become so, almost
overshooting the mark, as it were, through translation to a super-human
plane. So throughout she tries to do justice to the native point of
view. She says enough to make us feel that, despite certain notions
more or less offensive to our conscience, the ideal of the Formosan
tribesman is in important respects quite admirable. He is on the whole
a good man according to his lights. Allowance being made for his
handicap, he is playing the game of life as well as he can.

Having thus dealt briefly with principles of interpretation I perhaps
ought to stop short, since an anthropologist as such has nothing
to do with the bearing of his science on questions of political
administration. Mrs. McGovern, however, has a good deal to say about
the means whereby it is proposed to convert head-hunters into peaceable
and useful citizens. Without going into the facts, upon which I am
incompetent to throw any fresh light, I might venture to make some
observations of a general nature that depend on a principle already
mentioned. This principle was, that to understand a people is to
envisage its ideal. The practical corollary, I suggest, is that, to
preserve a people, one must preserve its ideal so far as to leave its
vital and vitalizing elements intact. In other words, in purging that
ideal, as may be done and ought to be done when it is sought to lift
a backward people out of savagery, great care should be taken not to
wreck their whole scheme of values, to cause all that has hitherto
made life worth living for them to seem cheap and futile. Given
sympathetic insight into their dream of the good life--one that is,
probably, not unlike ours in its main essentials--it ought to prove
feasible to curtail noxious practices by substituting better ways of
satisfying the same needs. Contact with civilization is apt to produce
among savages a paralysis of the will to live. More die of depression
than of disease or drink. They lose their interest in existence. Their
spirit is broken. When the policy is to preserve them, the mere man of
science can lend a hand by pointing out what indeed every experienced
administrator knows by the time he has bought his experience at other
people’s expense. Given, then, the insider’s point of view, a sense
of what the savage people itself wants and is trying for, and given
also patience in abundance, civilization may effectively undertake to
fulfil, instead of destroying.

      R. R. MARETT.


_Among the Head-hunters of Formosa_ contains the substance of
observations made during a two-years’ stay in Formosa--from September
1916 to September 1918. The book is written for the general reader,
rather than for the specialist in anthropology or ethnology. Hence
many details--especially those concerning minor differences in manners
and customs among the various aboriginal tribes--have been omitted;
for these, while perhaps of interest to the specialist, would prove
wearying to the layman.

Inadequate as the treatment of the subject may seem to the
anthropologist, I venture to hope that such information as the book
contains may stimulate interest, and perhaps encourage further
investigation, before it is too late, into the tribal customs and
habits of a little-known, and rapidly disappearing, people.

A writer--signing himself “P. M.”--discussing the aborigines of
Formosa, in the _China Review_ (vol. ii) for 1873, says: “Decay and
death are always sad sights to contemplate, and when decay and death
are those of a nation or race, the feeling is stimulated to acuteness.”

If this feeling in connection with the aborigines was aroused in
a European resident in Formosa in 1873, how much more strongly
is this the case to-day--nearly half a century later--when the
aboriginal population has dwindled from approximately one-sixth of
the population of the island (an estimate given by Keane in his
remarks on Formosa, in _Man Past and Present_) to about 3 per cent.
of the entire population--a decline of 15 per cent. in less than
fifty years. Under the present system of “benevolent assimilation” on
the part of the Japanese Government the aboriginal population seems
declining at an even more rapid rate than it did under Chinese rule,
which ended in 1895. Hence if the mistake which was made in the case
of the Tasmanians--that of allowing them to die out before definite
or detailed information regarding their beliefs and customs was
gained--is to be avoided in the case of the Formosan aborigines, all
anthropological data available, both social and physical, should be
gained without further delay. Up to this time apparently but little
has been done in the way of scientific study of these people, in spite
of the fact that, as Keane points out, Formosa “presents a curious
ethnical and linguistic connecting link between the continental and
oceanic populations of Asia.”

Dr. W. Campbell, writing in _Hastings’ Encyclopædia of Religion and
Ethics_ (vol. vi) remarks: “The first thing to notice in making any
statement about the savages of Formosa is the extreme paucity of
information which is available.” If anything which I--the first white
woman to go among certain of the tribal groups of these savages--am
able to say will make less this “extreme paucity of information,” then
I shall feel that the time spent in writing this book has not been

I must add that I am deeply indebted to Dr. Marett, of Oxford, who most
kindly read the greater part of the book in manuscript form; and again
in proof.


  Salzburg, Austria.
    _March 1922._


Among other valuable suggestions, Dr. Marett has called my attention
to the fact that the word “caribou” (sometimes spelt carabao) is used
in this book to describe an animal other than the American reindeer.
It is quite true that no dictionary would define “caribou” as meaning
the hideous, almost hairless, beast of the bovine species used in
certain parts of Indonesia for ploughing the rice-paddies, and whose
favourite recreation--when not harnessed to the plough--is to lie,
or to stand, buried to its neck in muddy water; yet this beast is so
called both in the Philippines and in Formosa; that is, by English and
Americans resident in these islands. By the Japanese the animal is
called _sui-gyu_; by the Chinese _shui-niu_ (as nearly as the sound can
be imitated in English spelling); the characters being the same in both
languages, but the pronunciation different.

In connection with the pronunciation and the English spelling of
Chinese and Japanese words, the spelling is of course phonetic. This
applies to the names of places, as well as to other words. As regards
Formosan place names, the difficulty of adequate transliteration is
aggravated by the fact that the Chinese-Formosans and the Japanese,
while using the same written characters, pronounce the names quite
differently. In spelling the names of places, I have followed that
system usually adopted in English books. There can, however, be no
hard and fast rules for Sino-Japanese spelling; therefore the Japanese
gentleman to whom I am indebted for the map who has spelled Keelung
with a single “e,” is quite “within his rights” from the point of view
of transliteration.

      J. B. M. M.


  PREFACE                                                       pp. 9-14

  INTRODUCTION                                                 pp. 15-18





  Scepticism regarding the Existence of a Matriarchate--Glimpse of
  Formosa from a Steamer’s Deck in passing--Hearsay in Japan concerning
  the Island Colony--Opportunity of going to Formosa as a Government
  Official                                                     pp. 27-35



  The Voyage from Kobe to Keelung--The History of Formosa as recounted by
  a Chinese-Formosan--A Visit to a Chinese-Formosan Home--The Scenery of
  Formosa--Experience with Japanese Officialdom in Formosa     pp. 36-68



  A New Year Visit to the East Coast Tribes--Received by the Taiyal as a
  Reincarnation of one of the seventeenth-century Dutch “Fathers.”
                                                               pp. 69-85



  Hakkas and other Chinese-Formosans, Japanese, Aborigines     pp. 86-92





  Physical Appearance pointing to Indoneso-Malay Origin--Linguistic
  Evidence and Evidence of Handicraft--Tribal Divisions of the
  Aborigines--Moot Question as to the Existence of a Pigmy People in the
  Interior of the Island                                      pp. 95-108



  Head-hunting and associated Customs--“Mother-right” and Age-grade
  Systems--Property Rights--Sex Relations                    pp. 109-129



  Deities of the Ami and Beliefs of this Tribe regarding Heaven and
  Hell--Beliefs and Ceremonials of the other Tribes of the South--Descent
  from Bamboo; Carved Representations of Glorified Ancestors and of
  Serpents; Moon Worship; Sacred Tree, Orchid, and Grass--The Kindling of
  the Sacred Fire by the Bunun and Taiyal Tribes--Beliefs and Ceremonials
  of the Taiyal--Rain Dances; Bird Omens; Ottofu; Princess and Dog
  Ancestors--Yami Celebrations in Honour of the Sea-god      pp. 130-151



  The Point of View of the Aborigines regarding Sex--Courtship preceding
  Marriage--Consultation of the Bird Omen and of Bamboo Strips as to the
  Auspicious Day for the Wedding--The Wedding Ceremony--Mingling by the
  Priestess of Drops of Blood taken from the Legs of Bride and Groom;
  Ritual Drinking from a Skull--Honeymoon Trips and the setting-up of
  House-keeping--Length of Marriage Unions                   pp. 152-162



  Belief that Illness is due to Evil Ottofu--Ministrations of the
  Priestess--A Seventeenth-century Dutch Record of the Treatment of
  the Dying by the Formosan Aborigines--The “Dead Houses” of the
  Taiyal--Burial of the Dead by the Ami, Bunun, and Paiwan Tribes beneath
  the Hearth-stone of the Home--“Green” and “Dry” Funerals   pp. 163-172



  Various Types of Dwelling-houses peculiar to the Different
  Tribes--Ingenious Suspension-bridges and Communal Granaries
  common to all the Tribes--Weapons and the Methods of their
  Ornamentation--Weaving and Basket-making--Peculiar Indonesian Form of
  Loom--Pottery-making--Agricultural Implements and Fish-traps--Musical
  Instruments: Nose-flute; Musical Bow; Bamboo Jews’-harp--Personal
  Adornment                                                  pp. 173-185



  Cutting away of the Lobes of the Ears and knocking out of the
  Teeth--Significance of the Different Designs of Tattoo-marking among
  the Taiyal--Tattooing among the Paiwan                     pp. 186-192



  Ami Wheeled Vehicle resembling Models found in early Cyprian
  Tombs--Boat-building and the Art of Navigation on the Decline.
                                                             pp. 193-197



  “Decadent” or “Primitive”--A Dream of White Saviours from the West
                                                             pp. 198-199



  To “wonder furiously”--Better Government, or Worse?--Comparison of
  Standards--A Conversation with Aborigine Friends--The Question of
  Money--Tabus                                               pp. 200-215

  INDEX                                                      pp. 217-220


    IN HONOUR OF THE SEA-GOD                            _Frontispiece_

                                                           FACING PACE

  ANTHROPOLOGICAL MAP OF FORMOSA                                    27

    TAIHOKU                                                         36


    CITY OF TAIHOKU                                                 52

  AUTHOR IN RICKSHA IN THE CITY OF TAIHOKU                          66

  USUAL FORM OF _TORO_ (PUSH-CAR)                                   66

    TAKEN                                                           70



  MEN OF THE BUNUN TRIBE                                            98


    PART PIGMY                                                     102

  WOMAN OF YAMI TRIBE OF BOTEL TOBAGO                              102

    OF HAVING A STRAIN OF PIGMY BLOOD                              108


  TAIYAL TRIBESPEOPLE                                              114

  SKULL-SHELF IN A TAIYAL VILLAGE                                  114

    PAIWAN CHIEF                                                   120

  FAMILY OF THE AMI TRIBE                                          134

    MONUMENT                                                       134


  TAIYAL WARRIOR IN CEREMONIAL BLANKET                             172

  PAIWAN VILLAGE OF SLATE                                          176


  A TAIYAL WOMAN AT HER LOOM                                       184

  WOMAN OF AMI TRIBE MAKING POTTERY                                184




Scale 1:2,000,000. Heights in feet]



Scepticism regarding the Existence of a Matriarchate--Glimpse of
Formosa from a Steamer’s Deck in passing--Hearsay in Japan concerning
the Island Colony--Opportunity of going to Formosa as a Government

As to the actual existence of matriarchates I had always been
sceptical. Matrilineal tribes, and those matrilocal--that was a
different matter. The existence of these among certain primitive
peoples had long been substantiated. But that the name should descend
in the line of the mother, or that the newly married couple should
take up its residence in the tribe or phratry of the bride, has not
of necessity meant that the woman held the reins of power. Quite
the reverse in many cases, as actual contact with peoples among
whom matrilineal and matrilocal customs existed has proved to every
practical observer.[1]

Those lecturers in the “Woman’s Cause” who boasted of the “great
matriarchates of old” I thought weakened, rather than strengthened,
the cause they would advocate by attempting to bring to its aid
evidence builded on the sands. The great “matriarchates of antiquity”
I was inclined to class with the “Golden Age” of the Theosophists, as
representing a state of affairs not only “too good to be true,” but
one in which the wish was--to paraphrase--father to the belief. And
as to prehistoric matriarchates, representing a highly evolved state
of civilization--in anything like the present-day significance of
that word--I am still sceptical; as sceptical as I am of a Golden Age
preceding the day of _Pithecanthropus_ and his kind.

But a land which is, as regards its aboriginal inhabitants--now
confined to a few tribes, and those fast diminishing, in its more
mountainous and inaccessible portions--sufficiently matripotestal
to justify its being called a matriarchate, I have found. And this,
as is often the case with a quest of any sort, rather by accident.
Residence among the American Indians of New Mexico, of Arizona, and of
Nevada, and a slight knowledge of the natives of certain of the Pacific
Islands--particularly those of Hawaii and of the Philippines--had
led me to give up the idea of finding a genuine matriarchate even
among primitive peoples. Too often I had found that where those who
had “passed by” had spoken of a “matriarchal state” as existing,
investigation had proved one that was only matrilineal or matrilocal.

It was in Formosa that I found these matriarchal people; Formosa, that
little-known island in the typhoon-infested South China Sea, so well
called by its early Portuguese discoverers--as its name implies--“the
beautiful.” Indeed, it was the beauty of Formosa that first attracted
me. I shall never forget the first glimpse that I caught of the island
as I passed it, going by steamer from Manila[2] to Nagasaki. There
it lay, in the light of the tropical sunrise, glowing and shimmering
like a great emerald, with an apparent vividness of green that I had
never seen before, even in the tropics. During the greater part of the
day it remained in sight, apparently floating slowly past--an emerald
on a turquoise bed. For on that day there was no typhoon or threat
of typhoon, and on such a day the China Sea can, with its wonderful
blueness and calm, make amends for the many other days on which, like
the raging dragon that the Chinese peasants believe it veritably to be,
of murky green, spitting white foam, deck-high, it threatens--and often
brings--death and destruction to those who venture upon it. Nor was
the emerald island a jewel in the rough. The Chinese call it Taiwan, a
name which means, in the characters of their language, Terrace Beach,
[Illustration].[3] This name the Japanese--the present masters of the
Island--have adopted; and it is not an inappropriate one. Nor do the
terraces refer to those small, low-lying ones of the rice-paddies which
for some centuries Chinese coolies have cultivated on the fertile east
coast of the island; but rather to those bolder mountain terraces,
carved by the hand of Nature, and covered with that wild verdure which
only tropical rains, followed by tropical sunshine, can produce.[4]
These terraces--gleaming brilliant green, and seeming to refract the
sunlight of that April day, as we sailed across the Tropic of Cancer,
which cuts Formosa through the middle--were curiously like the facets
of a great emerald, polished and carefully cut.

The glimpse which I caught that day of the shining island with its
vivid colouring, and seemingly wondrously carved surface, remained with
me as a pleasant memory during the several years that I spent in Japan.

Although Formosa is now a Japanese colony--has been since 1895--one
is able to get curiously little definite information in Japan
regarding the island. From the Japanese themselves one hears only
of the marvellous energy and skill of the Japanese in exploiting the
resources of the island--sugar, camphor, tea--and the manufacture of
opium, a Government monopoly. From the English, Scottish, and Canadian
missionaries stationed in Formosa, who sometimes spend their summers in
Japan, one hears more of the exploiting, on the part of the Japanese,
of the Chinese population of Formosa--a fact which later I found to be
cruelly true.

Now and then, while I was in Japan, I heard vague rumours of
head-hunting aboriginal tribes in the mountains of Formosa, but
regarding these I could gain little exact information. The Japanese,
when questioned about the aborigines, were either curiously
uncommunicative, or else launched at once into panegyrics concerning
the nobility of the Japanese authorities in Formosa in allowing dirty,
head-hunting savages to live, especially as some of these dirty
head-hunters had dared to rebel against the Japanese Government of the
island. Of the manners and customs of the aborigines, however, the
Japanese seemed wholly ignorant. Nor were the missionaries from Formosa
much better informed, as far as the aborigines were concerned. Their
mission work, they said, was confined to the Chinese population of the
island, with now and then tactful attempts at the conversion of the
Japanese. But as for the aboriginal tribes--yes, they believed there
were such people in the mountains; one of their number, when going
from one Chinese village to another in the interior of the island, had
seen a queen or “heathen priestess” of the aborigines carried on the
shoulders of her followers. More they did not know--yes, probably it
was true that these savages cut off people’s heads whenever they had a
chance. They were heathen--what could one expect?...

While failing to get much accurate information regarding the aborigines
of Formosa, I managed, on the other hand, to get a good deal of
misinformation. One book in particular, I remember, written obviously
by one who had never been there, gave the impression that the whole
island was inhabited by savages, with a “small sprinkling at the ports
of Japanese, Chinese, English, and Filipinos.”

The most trustworthy information concerning Formosa--as I later
learned, after I myself had been to the island--was that obtained
through the columns of the _Japan Chronicle_, an English newspaper
published in Kobe. This information was in connection, particularly,
with “reprisal-measures” of extraordinary severity taken by the
Japanese Government of Formosa against certain of the aboriginal
tribes, some members of which had risen in revolt against the Japanese
gendarmerie (_Aiyu-sen_) placed in authority over them. This curiously
cruel strain in the Japanese character was at that time difficult for
me to believe[5] (I had not then been in Korea, or in any of the other
Japanese dependencies). But what was said of the Formosan aborigines
aroused my interest to such an extent that I was anxious to study them
at first-hand.

Circumstances, however, prevented my going to Formosa for some time.
A “foreigner”--American or European--anywhere in the Japanese Empire
is always more or less under surveillance; in the colonies--Formosa
and Korea--more rather than less. Any attempt to go to Formosa to
carry out independent investigation of the aborigines would, I knew,
have been politely thwarted by the Japanese authorities. A “personally
conducted tour” could, finances permitting, have easily been arranged.
I would have been most politely received by the Japanese officials of
the island, and escorted by them to those places which they wished me
to see, and introduced to those people whom they wished me to meet.
Such had been the experience of several “foreigners” who had gone
to visit the island and “study its people.” To live for any length
of time in Formosa one must satisfy the Japanese authorities that
definite business demands one’s presence there. At that time I had no
“definite business which demanded my presence” in Formosa. Nor had
a “bradyaga”[6] like myself the capital to start a business in tea
or sugar, which would have given a credible excuse for living in the
island. Besides, a _woman_ tea-exporter!--the Japanese authorities
would scarcely have been satisfied.

My desire to learn at first-hand something of the aborigines of Formosa
remained, therefore, more or less an inchoate inclination on my part,
and I turned my attention to other things. Then, curiously enough, as
coincidences always seem curious when they affect ourselves, a few
months later, when I was in Kyoto, studying Mahayana Buddhism,[7] came
an offer from a Japanese official to go to Formosa as a teacher of
English in the Japanese Government School in Taihoku, the capital of
the island.[8]

I had taught English in Japan--both in Tokyo and Kagoshima[9]--and
I knew that however Japanese people in different parts of the
empire might vary in other respects, on one point, at least, they
were singularly alike; that is, in their incapacity for the ready
assimilation of a European tongue. This in rather curious contrast to
their ability for imitation in other respects. No; teaching English
to Japanese was no sinecure. But it opened for me the way to go to
Formosa; it gave me an “excuse for being,” as far as existence on that
island was concerned. Consequently I accepted the offer to teach in
the school which had been built for the sons of Japanese officials
in Formosa,[10] and in September 1916 I sailed from Kobe, Japan, for
Keelung, the northernmost port of Formosa.


[1] It is but fair to add, however, that among tribes with whom the
matrilocal custom exists, the position of the woman is apt to be better
than among those that are patrilocal. This particularly as far as the
treatment of the wife is concerned. The husband is regarded always more
or less as a visitor--an “auslander”--among his wife’s people; one
over whom the influence of his father-in-law and brothers-in-law has
a chastening effect. In matrilocal tribes the real power lies usually
in the hands of the father and the elder brother of the wife, who have
absolute authority over her and over her children.

[2] Formosa is only 225 miles (approximately) north of Cape Engano, the
northernmost point of the Philippine Islands, of which Manila is the

[3] Some Chinese scholars maintain that Terrace Bay (i.e. a bay
surrounded by terraces) is a more accurate translation than Terrace

[4] There is some difference of opinion as to the origin of the name.
Shinji Ishii, the Japanese writer, suggests that the Chinese name,
Taiwan, is a corruption of _Paiwan_, the name of one of the aboriginal
tribes of the island. In this connection it must be remembered that the
Japanese, generally speaking, are prone to deny to the Chinese capacity
for poetic conception, or appreciation of beauty. I, however, who have
lived among the Chinese, and know their genuine appreciation of the
beautiful in nature, and their habit of fixing the poetic concept of a
moment by crystallizing it in a word or phrase, think “Terrace Beach”
or “Terrace Bay” the more probable meaning of _Taiwan_.

[5] I had gone to Japan under the glamour of the writings of Lafcadio

[6] Vagabond--or wanderer--as nearly as that expressive Russian word
“бродяга” can be translated into English.

[7] To be exact, I was, when in Kyoto, devoting my attention chiefly
to the study of _Shin-shu_ (not to be confounded with Shinto)--one of
the many sects into which Mahayana Buddhism is now divided, the sect
associated with the two great Hongwanji temples of Kyoto--and comparing
these teachings with those of _Zen-shu_, another sect of Mahayana
Buddhism, which I had previously studied in a Zen monastery in Kamakura.

[8] As a teacher in this school I ranked as a “two-button” official
(_sōninkan_) of the Japanese Government, and thus technically
entitled to wear two buttons on the sleeve of my coat, and to carry
a short sword with a white handle. The Director of the school, the
Head Master and the heads of one or two departments and the other
“foreign” teachers were also “two-button” officials. The majority
of the teachers were “one-button” officials (_hanninkan_), entitled
to wear only one button on the sleeve of their coats and to carry a
black-handled sword. The “two-button” officials were “invited”--i.e.
practically commanded--to attend official government banquets and
similar functions, and to meet visiting princes and other notables from
the “mother-country.” The “one-button” officials escaped these honours.

[9] The picturesque and interesting--because still untouristized--city
in the extreme south of Japan, situated under the shadow of Sakurajima,
the still active volcano, which early in 1914--the year that I was in
Kagoshima--destroyed a portion of the city, and killed several hundred
of its inhabitants.

[10] A school for the daughters of Japanese officials has also been
established in Taihoku; but it is an interesting commentary upon the
position of women in Japan, even at the present time, that while
several “foreign” (English and American) teachers are engaged for the
boys’ school, no “foreign” teacher is employed for the girls’ school.
That would be “too expensive for a girls’ school,” the Japanese say.
Also, while the curriculum of the two schools is--with the exception of
English--practically the same, yet the boys’ school is called a Middle
School (Chu Gakkō), because the boys are expected to go later to a
Higher School, for the completion of their education; while the girls’
school is called a Higher School (Kōtō Gakkō) because the education of
girls is supposed to be completed with the completion of the course in
this school.



The Voyage from Kobe to Keelung--The History of Formosa as recounted by
a Chinese-Formosan--A Visit to a Chinese-Formosan Home--The Scenery of
Formosa--Experience with Japanese Officialdom in Formosa.

Formosa lies about a thousand miles south of Kobe--six hundred and
sixty miles, it is estimated, south of Kagoshima, the southernmost
point of Japan proper--and the voyage of four days down through
the Tung Hai (Eastern China Sea) was a warm one, the latter part
especially. Before Keelung was reached, the wraps that had been
comfortable when leaving Japan were discarded in favour of the
thinnest clothing that could be unpacked from bags or steamer-trunk.
Two Scottish missionaries, returning to their work among the
Chinese-Formosan in the southern part of the island, were the
only other foreigners[11] (white people) on board. The other
passengers--certainly of first and second class--were, with one
exception, Japanese; chiefly Japanese officials, who, with their
families, were going to take up their duties in the island colony of
the empire; or to resume these duties after a summer vacation spent
in Japan. The one exception was--as exceptions usually are--the most
interesting person on board. This was a Chinese-Formosan; one who,
in the days before the Japanese possession, had belonged to one of
the “old” families of the island--as people all over the world are
accustomed to reckon age in connection with “family” (_au fond_,
how curiously alike are we all--Oriental and Occidental--in the
little snobbishnesses that make up the sum of human pride--and human


_Formerly surrounding the city of Taihoku, the capital of Formosa._]

At any rate, in the days when “old” families in Formosa meant also
wealthy families, this Chinese-Formosan, then young, had been
sent to Hongkong, to be educated in an English college there.
Consequently it was in excellent English that he told me something
both of the early history of Formosa, as this had been recorded in
old Chinese manuscripts, and also something of the traditions of
the Chinese peasantry regarding the origin of the island. This--the
origin--was connected, as are almost all things else in China, in the
minds of the people, with the dragon. It seems that, according to
popular legend--which the early Chinese geographers repeated in all
seriousness--the particular dragon which was responsible for the origin
of Formosa was one of more than usual ferocity. The home of this
prince among dragons was Woo-hoo-mun (Five Tiger Gate), which lies
at the entrance of Foochow, a town on the South China coast. One day
his dragonship, being in a frolicsome mood, went for a day’s sport in
the depths of the ocean. In his play he brought up from the ocean-bed
sufficient earth to mould into a semblance of himself; Keelung
being the head; the long, narrow peninsula, ending in Cape Garanbi,
the southernmost point of the island, being the tail; the great
mountain-range running from north to south--of which Mt. Sylvia and
Mt. Morrison[12] are the two highest peaks--representing the bristling
spines on the back of the dragon.

Thus according to tradition was created the island of Formosa, or
Taiwan, which is in area about half the size of Scotland, but is in
shape long and narrow, being about 265 miles long[13] and--at its
widest point--about 80 miles wide. It is separated from China by the
Formosa Channel, sometimes called Fokien Strait, which is at the widest
about 245 miles, but at the narrowest only 62 miles; the dragon seeming
to prefer to build this memorial of himself almost within sight of his
permanent abiding-place. Indeed the Chinese-Formosan fishermen declare
that on a clear day the coast-line of China may be discerned from
the west coast of Formosa. But this I, myself, have never seen--the
curve of the earth, alone, would, I think, prevent its being actually
seen--and I am inclined to think that the fishermen mistake the outline
of the Pescadores, small islands lying between China and Formosa, but
nearer the latter, for China proper. That is, if their imagination
does not play them false altogether, and build for them out of the
clouds on the horizon a semblance of the coast-line of the home of
their ancestors--something sacred to every Chinese, whatever the
conditions of starvation or servitude which drove his ancestors from
the motherland.

Something of the early historical, or pseudo-historical, records of
Formosa my Chinese-Formosan fellow-voyager on the Osaka Shosen Kaisha
steamer also told me. It seems that the first mention in Chinese
records of the island is in the _Sui-Shu_--the history of the Sui
Dynasty, which lasted from A.D. 581 to 618, according to Occidental
reckoning. At that time Chinese historians and also geographers
believed Formosa to be one of the Lu-chu ([Illustration]) group;
that long chain of tiny islands which dot the sea from the south of
Japan to the north of Formosa, like stepping-stones, or--as they more
strongly reminded me when I first saw them--like the stones which
Hop-o’-my-Thumb dropped from his pocket when he and his brothers were
carried away into the forest, that they might find their way back home.

According to early Chinese historians the aboriginal inhabitants of
Formosa up to about the sixth century A.D. were a gentle and peaceable
people, making no objection to Chinese settlements on the coast of the
island. Then in about the second half of the sixth century--as nearly
as Oriental and Occidental systems of reckoning time can be correlated
(the beginning of the Sui dynasty) there swept up from “somewhere in
the south” bands of fierce marauders who conquered the west coast of
the island and drove the surviving aboriginal inhabitants into the
central mountains. A little later--in about the seventh century--the
Chinese historian, Ma Tuan-hiu, says a Chinese expedition went to
Formosa, with the intention of forcing the new inhabitants to pay
tribute to China. This, however, these “new inhabitants”--of Malay
origin presumably--refused to do. Consequently great numbers were
killed by the Chinese, who also burned many native villages, and used
the blood of the slain inhabitants for caulking their boats. To one
who knows the peculiar reverence with which blood is regarded by all
primitive peoples, and the many ceremonies, religious and social,
in which the use of blood makes the ceremony sacred, it is easily
comprehensible that the caulking of Chinese boats with the blood of
their kinsmen caused greater consternation among the Formosan savages
than the mere slaughter of a greater number of their people would have

In spite, however, of the ruthless measures taken by the Chinese in
their efforts to extort tribute, the “wild men of the South” held
their ground, and the Chinese were at last obliged to leave the island
without tribute, and without having exacted the promise of it. This,
according to Chinese records, was an unprecedented occurrence when sons
of the Flowery Kingdom were dealing with barbarians.

For several centuries Chinese records seem to have made little or no
mention of Formosa; then in the twelfth century occurred an event even
more extraordinary, as far as the relations between China and Formosa
were concerned. This was the appearance in the sea-coast villages of
Fokien Province, China, of a band of several hundred Formosans. These
men came, it is said, for the purpose of pillaging iron from the homes
and shops of the Chinese. This metal they valued above anything else
in the world,[14] because they had learned that it could be made into
spear-heads and arrow-heads, also into knives, more serviceable than
those made of flint. They were not able, apparently, to smelt the crude
ore, but they understood the building of forges, and were skilful in
“beating ploughshares into swords”--to paraphrase. Locks, bolts, nails,
from the houses of the Chinese villagers, were grist to the mill of
these Formosans, as was anything else made of iron on which they could
lay their hands. It is said that before they could be driven away they
had secured a large store of iron, in various forms, much of which they
succeeded in carrying off in their boats. This is the only occasion on
record on which the Formosan “barbarians” ventured to cross the channel
which separates their island from China; or at least the only one on
which they succeeded in doing so.

It was not until the Yuan dynasty (in the early part of the fourteenth
century), during a war between China and Japan, that a Chinese
expedition proved that Formosa did not belong to the Lu-chu group; this
with tragic consequences to an eminent Chinese scholar of the day. The
history of the Yuan dynasty records that “a literate of Fokien Province
advised attacking Japan through the Lu-chu Islands.” This literate,
believing Formosa to be one of the Lu-chu group, begged the Chinese
admiral, Yangtsian, to set sail first for that island. It seems that it
had been the intention of Admiral Yangtsian to sail from North China
directly to Japan, but, with that respect for reputed scholarship
characteristic of the Chinese, the admiral listened to the advice of
the literate; the latter being promoted to naval rank, and asked to
join the expedition as adviser.

This expedition proved that the principal island of the Lu-chu group
lay many _li_ to the north of Formosa. China was the gainer in
geographical knowledge; but the admiral lost the advantage which he
probably would have gained had he sailed from North China, and his
adviser, the literate, lost his head--not figuratively, but literally.
Even after this expedition, however, Formosa was still called “Little

It was not until the time of the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) that the
island seems to have been called Taiwan. In Chinese records of this
period the name “Taiwan,” as applied to the island, appears for
the first time. Indeed, for some reason, Chinese authorities seem
to consider that the “authentic history” of the island begins from
the time of the Ming dynasty. The event which in Chinese chronicles
dates the beginning of this “authentic history” was the visit--an
unintentional one--in about 1430, of the eunuch, Wan San-ho, an officer
of the Chinese Court. Wan San-ho had been on a visit to Siam, and
was on his way back to China, when the boat on which he was sailing
was struck by a typhoon and blown so far out of its course that the
captain was obliged to take refuge in the nearest port, which happened
to be on the south-west coast of Formosa, near the present town of
Tainan.[15] It is recorded that Wan San-ho remained for some time on
the island, and when he eventually returned to China took back with
him herbs and plants of high medicinal value. It is said that the
Chinese still use in their pharmacopœia herbs grown from the seeds of
those brought from Formosa by Wan San-ho in the fifteenth century. For
the accuracy of this statement I, of course, cannot vouch; nor could my
Chinese-Formosan friend who first told me the story of Wan San-ho. He,
however, evidently believed it to be true.

It was also during the Ming dynasty that the first association of the
Japanese with Formosa is recorded. This was about the close of what is
known in Japanese history as the Ashikaga dynasty, which lasted from
1336 to 1443. At this time the Japanese Empire was torn by internal
conflict, and was the scene of constant strife between contending
political parties, the followers of the Great Daimyos. During this
period of disorder Japanese pirates, under the banner of _Hachiman_
(the Japanese God of War), plundered the villages on the coast of China
and established headquarters, first on the Pescadores--the small group
of islands off the west coast of Formosa--and later at the port that is
now known as Keelung, on Formosa proper.

This seems to have been a harvest-time for Japanese pirates.
Unrestrained by authority at home, and finding no enemy stronger than
themselves on the sea, they made raids not only on the towns of the
China Coast, but made successful plundering expeditions even as far
south as Siam. The booty from these raids, it seems, was first brought
to Keelung, then sent to Japan, where it was sold at a high profit.
Those were days in which bold buccaneers waxed fat.

Nor were the Japanese pirates allowed to reap the harvest alone. At
the same time that these men had headquarters at Keelung, in the north
of Formosa, Chinese pirates had established headquarters near Tainan,
in the southern part of the island. If the records report truly, the
intercourse between the Chinese and Japanese pirates does not seem to
have been unfriendly, even while their respective nations were at war
with each other--outlaws presumably being absolved from the obligations
of patriotism. This state of affairs lasted for over a hundred years.
During the sixteenth century Formosa, which was then known to the
Japanese as “Takasago,” seems to have become a sort of “clearing-house”
between China and Japan--a link between nations the “respectable”
portions of whose populations were estranged. In the early part of that
century the Chinese pirates were united under the leadership of Gan
Shi-sai, grandfather of the famous Koksinga, shrines to whose memory
recently erected by the Japanese--because it has been learned that his
mother was a Japanese--one sees everywhere in Formosa at the present

The sixteenth century was a rather noteworthy one in the history of
Formosa. It was during this century that the Hakkas--the outcaste class
of China--fled to Formosa to escape persecution in the mother-country.
And more important, at least from the European point of view, it was
in the sixteenth century that Europeans first learned--as far as
there is any record--of the existence of the island. It is sometimes
said that the Portuguese had a fort in Keelung about 1590. Of this
there seems to be no definite proof. Not only was this the opinion of
the Chinese-Formosan who first gave me in outline the history of the
island, but later investigation on my own part failed to find proof, or
even trustworthy evidence, of the existence of such a fort. However,
there can be little doubt that the Portuguese navigators, sailing down
the west coast of the island, gave to it the name by which it is known
to-day to Europeans--“Ilha Formosa” (Beautiful Island).[17] The Dutch
navigator Linschotten, in the employ of the Portuguese, so recorded it
in his chart in the latter part of the sixteenth century.

It was early in the next century that the Dutch, as a nation, first
came into touch with Formosa. In 1604 the Dutch admiral, Van Narwijk,
sailed for Macao, in the south of China; but a typhoon--that frequent
occurrence in the China Sea--drove him to the Pescadores. While there
he gained a knowledge of the near-by large island of Formosa, which
knowledge, it is said, was responsible for the later--temporary--Dutch
dominance of the island. Another typhoon, however, resulting in another
wreck, brought about the actual first landing of Dutchmen on Formosa
proper. This was in 1620, when a Dutch merchant ship was wrecked near
the present town of Tainan.

At that time a Japanese colony was, with the permission of China,
established at this point. The Dutch captain, after having first
been refused by the Japanese land on which to build a depôt for his
goods--or that portion which he had saved from the wreck--at last
persuaded the men from Dai Nippon to allow him to build a depôt “if
this could be built on ground no larger than that which could be
covered with an ox-hide.” The “heaven-descended”[18] thought the
_Ketto-jin_ (hairy barbarian) mad. They naturally were not familiar
with the European classics. The Dutch captain apparently was, since he
repeated the famous manœuvre--said to have been responsible for the
founding of Carthage[19]--of cutting the ox-hide into very thin strips.
With the raw hide rope thus made he succeeded in encircling a piece of
ground amply large for the building of a goods depôt.

The Chinese-Formosan, in relating this story, was so convulsed with
laughter that, in spite of his excellent English, it was at first
difficult to understand him. It seemed that what especially excited
his risibility was the idea--to him ludicrous--that a man of any other
nationality should be able to outwit a Japanese in a “sharp deal.”
He declared the story “too good to be true,” but in the accounts of
the early history of Formosa which I have read since hearing the
Chinese-Formosan recount the story, there seems evidence for its verity.

At the time, however, when this incident is supposed to have
occurred--the early part of the seventeenth century--the Chinese were
really the masters both of the Pescadores and of Formosa proper. It
was they who, in 1622, gave the Dutch permission to establish a fort
on one of the Pescadore islands. This was done under the command of
Admiral Cornelius Reyersz, who wished to have a stronghold from which
he could sally forth to attack the Portuguese at Macao. The next year
an agreement was reached between Holland and China by which the Dutch
were to remove from the Pescadores to Formosa. In 1624 the Dutch built
Fort Zelandia, the ruins of which are still to be seen at Anping, the
harbour-town near Tainan.

The building of Fort Zelandia marked the beginning of Dutch dominance
in Formosa, a period which, though lasting less than forty years, is
one that has never been forgotten by the aboriginal inhabitants of the
island, as I found later, when I went among them. During this time,
however, the Dutch were not left in undisturbed control of the island.
Another European nation cast covetous eyes upon the “Ilha Formosa.”
Spain organised an expedition under the command of Don Antonio de
Careño de Valdez, which in 1626 set forth from Manila, then a Spanish
possession, and sailed north to the “Beautiful Island.” The Spaniards
succeeded in establishing a colony at Keelung, which they called
Santissima Trinidad, and afterwards built a fort--San Domingo--at the
other northern port of the island, called by the Chinese and Japanese

For some years it seems there was a struggle between the Dutch and
Spanish for the domination of the island. Then in 1641 the greater
part of the Spanish troops in Formosa were recalled to Manila, in
order to take part in an expedition against the Moors[20] in Mindanao,
the southernmost island of the Philippine group. This gave the
Dutch an opportunity of which they were not slow to take advantage.
They renewed their attacks upon the Spanish garrison, now greatly
weakened. The following year--1642--this surrendered, and the last
Spaniard--including the priests and the Dominican Friars, who had come
over with Don Careño de Valdez--left the island.

The Dutch were now left for a time undisputed masters of Formosa. They
built forts on the ruins of those evacuated by the Spanish at Tamsui
and Keelung. The old Dutch fort at Tamsui is still standing, and is in
a good state of preservation. It has walls eight feet thick, and is
used to-day as the British Consulate of the island.[21]

For about twenty years after the Spanish surrender in Formosa, Dutch
prosperity in the island was at its height. It is said that during this
time there were nearly three hundred villages under Dutch jurisdiction,
divided for convenience of administration into seven provinces. The
population of these villages, while recorded as being “native,”
evidently consisted of Chinese-Formosans. Finding that agriculture
was not progressing among these people, the Dutch minister, Gravius,
is said to have sent to the East Indies for “water-buffaloes,” the
so-called caribou, and when these arrived he distributed them among the
Chinese population of the island. “Water-buffaloes”--descendants of
those imported by the seventeenth-century Dutch--are used to-day by the
Chinese-Formosans for ploughing their rice-paddies (see illustration).


_This is said to be a descendant of those introduced by the Dutch in
the seventeenth century._]


Besides the Chinese population of Formosa under Dutch administration,
the aboriginal tribes in the mountains also acknowledged Dutch
supremacy, as they had never acknowledged Chinese, and as, more
recently, they have never been reconciled to Japanese. Later, when I
myself went among the aborigines, I received interesting confirmation
of the account given me by the Chinese-Formosan on the boat, as the
reason, apparently, that I was able to get into as close touch with
them as I did was because they regarded me as the reincarnation of one
of the seventeenth-century Dutch, whose rule over them, three hundred
years ago, has become a sacred tradition.

This tradition among the aborigines confirms the records made by
Father Candidius, and other Dutch missionaries of the period; although
the records, naturally, go more fully and accurately into detail. If
record and tradition are to be relied upon, the Dutch rule of Formosa
was marked by unusual benevolence, sagacity, and sympathy with the
aboriginal people; tradition in this instance carrying more weight
than record, as the former is that of the subject people. Apparently
the Dutch administrators allowed the natives much liberty regarding
their own form of government; there was no interference in the choice
of headmen or chieftains on the part of the various tribes; nor was
there interference in the administration of tribal justice by these
headmen. The chief of each of the most important tribes was invested
with a silver-headed staff, bearing the Dutch commander’s coat of
arms. This was supposed to be used as an insignia of authority. Thus
only indirectly, and in a manner appealing to the vanity of the savage
chieftains, was recognition of the over-lordship of the Dutch enforced.
As also indirect was the influence exerted over the chiefs, by a great
feast given once a year by the Dutch governor, to which it is said the
chieftain of every aboriginal tribe was invited, and where matters both
inter-tribal and intra-tribal were discussed. At the conclusion of this
feast presents were distributed, and the chieftains sent home with the
blessing of the Dutch governor.[22]

This time of peace and prosperity for the aboriginal tribes--the
memory of which has remained among them as that of a Golden Age--was
brought to an abrupt end in 1661, through the invasion of Formosa by
the Chinese pirate Koksinga, before referred to, and his followers, who
seem to have poured in hordes into the island. The Dutch made a brave
resistance; but, in all, they numbered only a little over two thousand,
and were unable to hold their own against the vastly greater number of
Chinese, who came over from the mainland in the train of Koksinga. The
latter is said to have owned three hundred boats, in which he brought
his followers from China.

In 1662 Governor Cogett, the Dutch commander, surrendered to Koksinga.
Then the Dutch who remained alive, both those who had composed the
garrison and also the settlers with their families--the latter said to
have numbered about six hundred--left the island as speedily as was
possible, most of them sailing for the near-by Dutch East Indies.

From that time until 1895--the close of the Sino-Japanese War--when
Formosa passed into the hands of the Japanese, the Chinese were lords
of the island. Of this period of Chinese dominance--over two hundred
years--I learned little from the Chinese-Formosan on the boat. He
passed on to the recounting of the sufferings of his own people--the
Chinese on the island--under Japanese rule, and the injustice to
which they had been subjected for twenty years. Of this he was still
speaking when the little steamer, rounding the rocky islet, the last
of the Lu-chu group, which lies--or rather, rears upward--as a sort
of natural fortification in front of the chief harbour of the island,
puffed noisily into Keelung bay. My Chinese friend, on bidding me
good-bye, said he hoped that while I was in Formosa I would come to his
home and meet his wives--one of whom, especially, was very intelligent
and spoke a little English.

“Bradyaga”[23] though I am, and accustomed to meeting all sorts and
conditions of--wives of men, I must, I think, for a moment have looked
startled. It was the man’s English accent and his English point of view
regarding many matters that made his casual reference to his plural
household seem incongruous. He must have noticed this (indeed it was
his remark that revealed my own _naïveté_ to myself; I thought I had
my features under better control), for he smiled and said: “I know in
Europe and in America it is different; certain things are done _sub
rosa_--and denied. It is a question which is better. But come to my
home and see for yourself how our system works.”

Later I met the wives of my Chinese-Formosan friend. There were three
of them--the intelligent one, the pretty one, and the eldest and
most honoured one, who was the mother of the eldest son and heir. At
least the last was called the “Great Wife” and the “Honourable One”
by the others; but there was no trace of shame or of dishonour in the
position of any of the women. All seemed very proud, very happy, and
curiously affectionate toward each other and--greater test of a woman’s
affection--even toward each others’ children. Nor do I think that they
were “showing off” for my benefit; it was said by all who knew them
that this was their habitual attitude. Other lands, other manners--and
morals, perhaps.

As I went away from that interview with the several Mrs.----,
I startled my ricksha-man--who thought I was giving him some
incomprehensible order--by humming, to the tune of a chant I had
learned from an aboriginal tribe in the mountains (for this was after I
had been in Formosa for several months), some words written, I think,
by Kipling:

    “There are nine-and-sixty ways of constructing tribal lays,
    And every single one of them is right.”

Then I met a missionary acquaintance. So preoccupied was I with
thoughts suggested by the visit I had just paid that I almost passed
the missionary without speaking. Turning back, I apologized both for
my seeming discourtesy in not speaking, and also for the barbaric
chant, to the tune--if tune it could be called--of which I was humming
Kipling’s words.

“A visit I have just made suggested the words, I suppose,” I explained,
laughing, “or brought them up from some depth of the subconscious; I
was rather fond of quoting them once.” Then I told the missionary of
the visit from which I was returning.

“Disgusting heathen!” she exclaimed. “Besides, what have ‘different
ways of constructing tribal lays’ to do with heathen immorality?” She
frowned and looked puzzled. Then added more gently, as if explaining
to a child: “‘Lays,’ you know, means poetry, and ‘constructing tribal
lays’ just means writing poetry; nothing whatever to do with the
heathen and their horrible ways.”

When we parted she adjured me to be more careful about wearing my
sun-helmet, assuring me that it was necessary in that climate. “If one
does not,” she explained, “something might happen to one--to one’s
head, you know,” she added significantly, “and it would be a dreadful
thing in a heathen country....”

To go back for a moment to the day of my landing:

As my first glimpse of Formosa from a passing steamer, a few years
before, had fascinated me, so did my first glimpse of the island
after I had landed. Not the Formosa of Keelung quay with its hordes
of starving, skin-and-bone dogs--several of them dragging about
on three legs or with paralysed hindquarters--nosing for food
among the refuse,[24] or its crowd of screaming, guttural-voiced
ricksha-coolies and vegetable-and-fish pedlars; or the arrogant
Japanese officials--all in military uniform, with swords strapped at
their sides[25]--bullying the Chinese-Formosans. But the Formosa of the
country through which I passed in going from Keelung to Taihoku; the
Formosa of scenery surpassing that of Japan proper, both in natural
beauty and in the picturesqueness of the tiny peasant-villages, each
village protected from tornadoes by a clump of marvellously tall
bamboos, whose feathery tops of delicate green seemed to cut into the
deep blue of the tropical sky; each house protected from evil spirits
by cryptic signs--said to be quotations from Confucius--written, or
painted, in black on red paper,[26] and pasted above and at both sides
of each doorway. Every village was further protected by a temple of
brilliant and varied colouring, on the roof of which wonderfully
moulded dragons writhed or reared. The inhabitants of these villages
were, of course, Chinese-Formosans. Very picturesque were these too,
in their bright blue smocks and black trousers; men and women dressed
so much alike that at a little distance they were indistinguishable.
Only on nearer view was it clear that those who wore tinsel ornaments
in their hair and walked as if on stilts were women. When these hobbled
still nearer the cause of their queer stilted walk was obvious. Their
feet were “bound,” i.e. deformed and distorted, pathetically--and to
Western eyes abhorrently--out of shape.

Up to this time I had always supposed that only among the “upper
classes” in China were the feet of the women bound; those of the
class who could afford to go always in ricksha or sedan-chair. But
all the women of the Chinese-Formosans--except those of the despised
Hakkas--bind their feet; rather, have them bound in infancy. A woman
with unbound feet is regarded as a sort of pariah, and her chances of a
“good marriage”--that goal of every Chinese woman--are almost nil.[27]

These peasant and coolie-women hobbled nearer to see the train as it
stopped at the little stations between Keelung and Taihoku, especially
when it was reported that there was a white woman aboard. Many of them
could not walk without the aid of a stick or without resting one hand
on the shoulder of a small boy, thus maintaining their balance. “Lily
feet” were obviously a handicap in the carrying of such burdens as most
of these women had on their backs. In some cases the bundles consisted
of babies strapped Indian-papoose fashion to the shoulders of the
mothers--a custom common to both Chinese and Japanese women; in other
cases, of heavy bundles of food or of faggots. Unattractive as were the
figures of the women--the entire leg being undeveloped, as the result
of the cramping of the feet from infancy--their faces were generally
attractive; sweet, with a wistful, rather pathetic expression. Only
the lips and teeth of the older women were often hideously disfigured
from the habit of beetle-nut chewing. The women out of doors who were
not burden-bearing were kneeling at the side of the streams and canals,
used for irrigating the rice-paddies, busily engaged in washing the
family linen--very much in public--or pounding it between stones. As
these washerwomen--and they seemed legion, for the Chinese devote as
much time to the washing of their clothing as the Japanese do to that
of their bodies--knelt, I saw the soles of their feet. In the case of
some of the poorer and more ill-dressed women, the splashing water had
displaced the rags with which their feet were bound, and the “shoes”
which were supposed to cover them. The feet themselves--those members
which every lily-footed woman most carefully conceals--were exposed.
The sight was not a pleasant one.

I turned to watch the men, most of whom were working in the
rice-paddies. Some of them were ploughing--with much the same
sort of plough as those supposed to have been used by the ancient
Egyptians. To these ploughs were harnessed great “water-buffaloes.”
Here was picturesqueness unmarred by a suggestion of pain, even of
pain proudly borne, as in the case of the women. The greyness of
the “water-buffaloes” made a pleasing contrast to the vivid green
of the rice-paddies and to the blue smocks and high-peaked, yellow,
dried-bamboo-leaf helmets of the men. There are few things more
pleasing to the eye than a carefully terraced Chinese rice-paddy
in full verdure, with its graceful slopes and intricate curves of
shimmering green. If one approaches too near, the olfactory sense is
unpleasantly assailed. But on this first day in Formosa I was not too
near. I saw only the beauty--beauty of unusual richness and variety;
for, as a background to the rice-paddies, and peasant villages and
multi-coloured temples, beetled the great mountain crags, all glowing
in the brilliance of tropical September sunshine.

So beautiful was the scenery of the island that after I was settled in
Taihoku I made frequent excursions through the country, scraping what
acquaintance I could--by means of sign language and the few words of
Chinese-Formosan dialect that I had learned from my servants--with the
peasants, and taking “snapshots” of their houses and temples, and of
their children. Attractive as are all Oriental children, these little
ones seemed particularly so; perhaps because of the quaintness of
Chinese children’s costume, certainly as this is still worn in Formosa.

On one of these excursions into the country I passed through Keelung.
My kodak was in my hand, but the idea of taking a picture in Keelung
never occurred to me. In the first place, I knew that the taking
of photographs of any sort in this port was one of the many things
“strongly forbidden” by Japanese officialdom. In the second place,
Keelung is a squalid and dirty town, with none of the picturesqueness
of the open country or of the tiny peasant-villages. There was no
temptation to photograph its ugliness, or the flaunting evidences of
its vice--vice of the mean, sordid type of Oriental, sailor-haunted
port-towns. I was hurrying through this hideous town as quickly as
possible, in order to reach a stretch of open country, which I knew
lay beyond, and which commanded a beautiful view of the sea and of
fantastically rearing rocky islets, when I felt my arm roughly grasped.
Turning around, I beheld a Japanese policeman. Clanking his sword as he
spoke, he demanded my name and address; also he peremptorily demanded
to know what I meant by coming to take photographs in the great
colonial port-town of his Imperial Majesty, and asked if I did not know
that this made me guilty of the unspeakably abominable crime of lack
of respect for his August Majesty. I explained that I was not taking
pictures in Keelung, had not done so, and had no intention of so doing;
that there was nothing there worth photographing.

“But the fortifications,” he began; “you may be looking----” Then he
stopped, apparently rather abashed.

“What fortifications?” I asked. “I did not know that there were any.
Where are they?”

“Oh no, of course,” he answered, with confusion rather curious in a
Japanese policeman. “Of course there are not any now. Only there might
be some, one day, and----” Suddenly his brow cleared, as if under the
inspiration of an idea that would elucidate matters. “Anybody might
be a German--a German spy, you know, looking for a site to build some
fortifications perhaps.”

Although this was during the Great War, I knew that in Formosa
the fear on the part of the Japanese Government of a “German spy”
was practically nil. Also the Japanese policeman was sufficiently
intelligent to be able to distinguish one to whom English was the
mother-tongue (I was speaking with my secretary as I walked) from
a German, even though the latter were speaking English.[28] But in
those days of war-hysteria when many English-speaking people became
excitedly sympathetic at the suggestion of German spies and their
machinations----. Yes, it was a clever move on the part of the
policeman. But it aroused my curiosity.

Afterwards I made several trips to Keelung, but without my camera. And
once, quite by accident, I learned how strongly fortified that port is
at the present time, and with what ingenuity the fortifications are
concealed. But that forms no part of the present narrative....

The fact that I had taken a “photographic apparatus” to Keelung was
recorded against me in the police records of Taihoku, and brought
several calls of an inquisitorial nature from the police.

To inquisitorial calls from the police and from other Japanese
officials, however, I became accustomed during my residence in Formosa.
My object in going there was to devote my leisure time--that not
engaged in teaching--to the study of the aboriginal tribes of the
island. There were reports--reports confirmed and denied--of a pigmy
race among the aborigines. These reports still further stimulated
my interest. I knew there were really pigmies--the Aetas--in the
Philippines. Were there, or were there not, such people in the
mountains of Formosa? I determined to find out.

My teaching duties occupied only four days a week. The other three
days of each week, besides all the days of the rather frequent
vacations, were supposedly my own, to employ as I felt inclined. It
was supposed apparently by both school officials and police officials
(the duties of the two seem curiously interlinked in the Japanese
Empire) that inclination would lead me to devote this leisure to
attending tea-parties at the houses of the missionaries in the city and
to distributing pocket Testaments among the young men of the school.
My predecessor (who had resigned the school-post in order to take up
avowed missionary work) had, it seemed, so devoted her leisure, and
to the mind of Japanese officialdom it was incomprehensible that what
one _seiyō-jin_ woman had done all others should not, as a matter
of course, wish to do. When it was learned that my inclination lay
in another direction--that of tramping the island, especially the
mountains, and getting into as close touch as possible with the
aborigines--I received several calls from horrified officials. The
Director of Schools was especially insistent (he said he was requested
to be so by the Chief of the Police Department) in wishing to know why
I was not satisfied with ricksha-rides about the city. This after I
had made him understand that I was not a missionary and that I was not
particularly interested in either pink teas or Testament distribution.
“Why you want to walk?” he demanded. “Japanese ladies never walk; only
coolie-women walk.”

I explained that obviously I was not a Japanese, also that I was not
at all certain that I was a lady, and that if the distinction between
coolie-woman and lady lay in the fact that the one walked and the
other did not, I much preferred being classed in the former category.

He scratched his head rather violently--a Japanese habit when puzzled
or annoyed. Suddenly the light of a great idea seemed to dawn upon him.
“Ah,” he exclaimed exultantly, the recollection of some missionary
speech or sermon evidently being made to serve the occasion, “but
they will say you are immoral, and Christian ladies do not like to be
thought immoral.”

This struck me as being amusing--for several reasons.

“Yes,” I said, “and who is likely to think me immoral?”

“Oh, everybody,” he answered impressively. “And they will publish it in
the papers--all the Japanese papers in the city, and in the island,”
he emphasized, “that you are immoral. And, anyhow, you must do in Rome
as the Romans do,” he added triumphantly, evidently thinking he had
convicted me out of the mouth of one of the sages of my own Western
world. Ever afterwards this: “Do in Rome as the Romans do” was a
favourite phrase of his when he tried to insist upon my regulating my
life in every detail upon the model of that of a Japanese woman.


[Illustration: USUAL FORM OF _TORO_ (PUSH-CAR).

(_Author has vacated seat by the side of Japanese policeman, in order
to take “snapshot.”_)]

I am afraid I did not conceal my amusement on this occasion as well
as I should have done. Japanese officials take themselves, and like
to be taken, very seriously. I did not wish the Director to know
that I saw through his ruse--and that of certain other of the Japanese
officials--a ruse directed towards keeping me from coming into personal
contact with the aborigines of the island and with the more intelligent
Chinese-Formosans, except when under the immediate surveillance of the

The Director said that it would be “all right” if he accompanied me
on my excursions into the mountains. Now the Director happened to be
a married man; his wife happened to be a Japanese lady who “of course
did not walk.” I tried to explain that if he really thought there
was danger of a scandal, the companionship of a married man on these
excursions, one whose wife was left at home, would not tend to lessen
this danger.

“I am afraid I must continue to go my wicked way without the protection
of your companionship,” I said; “and if ‘they’--whoever ‘they’ may
be--annoy you with questions as to the object of my excursions into the
mountains, or if they are inquisitive as to whether I go there for the
purpose of a romance, legitimate or otherwise, tell them that I am one
of those who like to ‘eat of all the fruit of the trees of the garden
of the world----’”

“Huh?” roared the Director. Both hands were at his head now.

“Tell them ‘Yes’ to anything they ask about me,” I said, “if that
will set their minds at rest and prevent their annoying you with
impertinent questions, as you say they annoy you.”

“I’ll tell them you are immoral, that’s what I’ll tell them; if
you don’t just go about where you can ride in rickshas, like other
ladies,” wrathily exclaimed the Director, attempting to rise and make
a dignified exit. Unfortunately, however, the Director happened to be
fat, and happened not to be accustomed to sitting in a chair.[29] Also
his sword had become entangled in the wicker-work arm of the chair, so
that, when he rose, the chair rose with him. This slightly spoiled the
effect of the dignified exit. It may have been due to the fact that it
was necessary to extricate him from the chair, that, before leaving, he
became sufficiently mollified to concede: “If you want exercise more
than other ladies, you may play tennis-ball on the school-grounds.”


[11] Why the Japanese should restrict the term “foreigner”
(_seiyō-jin_, or _ijin-san_, or _ketto-jin_, the last meaning literally
“hairy barbarian”) to men and women of the white race, I do not know.
A member of any other Asiatic race--liked or loathed--is not called a

[12] Mt. Morrison--called by the Japanese Niitaka-Yama--is the highest
mountain in the Japanese Empire, exceeding by nearly a thousand feet
the world-famous Mt. Fuji, in Japan proper.

[13] That is, “as the crow flies.” In actually traversing the island,
however, from northern to southern extremity, it is necessary, by the
shortest route, to travel at least 350 miles.

[14] It is said that at this time the Formosans valued iron so highly
that when throwing a spear tipped with this metal, they always pulled
it back, by means of a raw-hide line, about 100 feet long, one end of
which was held in the hand, the other attached to the spear-haft.

[15] Probably the harbour of Anping.

[16] The recent change of view-point on the part of the Japanese
regarding Koksinga throws an interesting side-light on the psychology
of that race. Previous to 1895 the name of Koksinga was in Japan held
up to universal execration. He had been a “villainous Chinese pirate;
one who had behaved in Taiwan with the usual cruelty of his race”
(i.e. the Chinese). Since 1895 when the Japanese came into control of
Formosa, and, in turn, dispossessed the Chinese, it has been discovered
“in old Japanese records” that Koksinga had a Japanese mother.
Therefore he was Japanese--and a hero. Temples have recently been
erected in honour of this “Japanese hero” by the Japanese, in several
places in Formosa. To one who knows how strictly patrilineal the
Japanese are--how little relationship through the line of the mother is
usually considered--“_c’est à rire_”!

[17] The name Formosa, as applied to the island, seems to have first
become generally known in Europe through the book, _Historical and
Geographical Description of Formosa_, by the so-called impostor,
Psalmanazar, published in London in 1704. How much credence can be
given to the statements of Psalmanazar remains still an open question.

[18] The Japanese, of even the more educated classes--teachers and
others--will say in all seriousness that their ancestors “came from
heaven.” The ancestors of all other races they consider to have
been earth-born. On this assumption they base their conception of
the superiority of the Japanese race to all other races. There is
a mountain in the southern part of Japan, near Kagoshima, to which
the Japanese point as the actual spot on which their first ancestors
alighted when they descended from heaven.

[19] Aus Brockhaus, _Konversationslexikon_: “Dido oder Elissa, die
sagenhafte Gründerin von Karthago, war eine Tochter des tyrischen
Königs Mutto und die Gemahlin von dessen Bruder Sicharbas (bei Virgil
Sichäus) einem Priester des Melkart. Ihr Bruder tötete ihren Gemahl,
worauf Dido mit dessen Schätzen, begleitet von vielen Tyriern, entfloh,
um einen neuen Wohnsitz zu suchen. Sie landete in Afrika, unweit der
schon bestehenden phönizischen Pflanzstadt Ityke (Utika) und baute auf
dem den Eingeborenen abgekauften Boden eine Burg Byrsa (das Fell). Die
Bedeutung dieses Wortes wurde durch die Sage so erklärt: Dido habe so
viel Land gekauft, wie mit einer Rindshaut belegt werden könne, dann
aber listig die Haut in dünne Streifen geschnitten und damit einen
weiten Raum umgrenzt. An die Burg schloss sich hierauf die Stadt
Karthago an. Hier ward Dido nach ihrem Tode, den sie sich selbst auf
dem Scheiterhaufen gab, um dem Begehren des Nachbarkönigs Hiarbas
(Jarbas) nach ihrer Hand zu entgehen, göttlich verehrt, wie denn ihre
mythische Gestalt offenbar derjenigen der grossen weiblichen Gottheit
der Semiten entspricht, welche auch den Namen Dido führte. Virgil
lässt, wie es schon Nävius getan, den Äneas zur Dido kommen und giebt
dessen Untreue als die Ursache ihres Todes an.”

Aus Weber, _Weltgeschichte_: “Die Sage von der Ochsenhaut bei Gründung
der Stadt (Karthago) ist bezeichnend für den Charakter der Phönizier,
deren List und Verschlagenheit schon im Altertum berühmt war.”

Nach Gustav Schwab, _Die Schönsten Sagen des klassischen Altertums_,
“War es eine Stierhaut (was dem Namen Byrsa entspricht).”

[20] The Moors captured the southern island of the Philippine Island
group--Mindanao--and converted the natives to Mohammedanism. Their
hybrid descendants now living on Mindanao are still called “Moros.”

[21] During the days of the Chinese over-lordship of the island there
were several British consulates in Formosa; one in Takao, the southern
port of the island, and one in Anping, the harbour on the west coast,
as well as the one in Keelung. Since Formosa has been a part of the
Japanese Empire, however, British trade with the island has steadily
declined. No encouragement--in fact, every discouragement--is given
it by the present masters of the island; hence there are no longer
consulates at either Takao or Anping, and the great houses formerly
occupied by the consuls, which were centres of both social and business
activity in the British colonies at Takao and Anping, respectively, are
now falling into decay, occupied only by bats, snakes, and homeless
Chinese-Formosan beggars.

[22] The records speak only of male chieftains being invited to these
feasts. It is possible that those tribal groups which have now--and
probably had then--women chiefs sent male proxies to the feasts of the
Dutch governors, as the latter would treat only with men.

[23] See footnote, p. 33.

[24] Curiously enough, this pack of starving dogs constituted my
first impression of life in Formosa, teeming though the island is
with richness of vegetable and animal life, and with all that makes
for easy and comfortable living for both man and beast. At first the
starvation and evident misery of these dogs puzzled me. I did not then
fully understand--as later I was forced to do--the callousness and
indifference of the great majority of both Chinese and Japanese to the
sufferings of animals.

[25] All the Japanese in Formosa in Civil Service, including the
teachers, wear military uniform and carry swords.

[26] All “writing” in Chinese characters is really painting, being done
with a soft brush dipped in Indian ink.

[27] During my residence in Formosa, my Chinese-Formosan house-boy came
to me, begging that _Asa_--the “sun,” or “shining lord”--in this case
“female lord” (lady does not quite express the significance) of the
household--would lend him 70 yen, with which to buy a “lily-footed”
bride. His father had said it was time for him to marry, and with
40 yen--the amount of his savings--he could buy only a “big-footed”
wife, something which would make him the laughing-stock of all his

[28] In Japan the police are drawn from the educated upper-class--the
old _Samurai_.

[29] The Japanese when at home always sit, or rather kneel, on
_Zabuton_ (kneeling-cushions, or mats) on the floor.



A New Year Visit to the East Coast Tribes--Received by the Taiyal as a
Reincarnation of one of the seventeenth-century Dutch “Fathers.”

In spite of the objections of the Director, and the suspicions of the
police and of the hydra-headed ‘they,’ I did not, while in Formosa,
confine either my interests or my exercise to ricksha-riding[30] or to

My chief interest lay with the mountain tribes--the aborigines; my
chief exercise consisted in what my Japanese friends called “prowling”
among these tribes. Sometimes accompanied by another English teacher
and a servant, sometimes by my son or secretary, sometimes quite alone,
I went up into the mountains; going as far as I could by “trolly”
(or _toro_, as the Japanese call it[31])--a push-car, propelled by
Chinese-Formosan coolies, on rails laid by the Japanese--rather, under
their instructions--into the mountains, for the purpose of bringing
camphor-wood and crude camphor down to the great camphor-refining
factory in Taihoku. From the terminus of the _toro_ line I “prowled.”

For permission to go into the mountains--and permission for almost
every movement on the part of a “foreigner” is necessary in the
Japanese Empire, in Formosa even more than in Japan proper--I am
indebted to Mr. Hosui and to Mr. Marui, the two most courteous Japanese
officials whom I met in Formosa. I wish here to express my gratitude to

The tribe that I first studied, and of which I saw perhaps more than of
any other during my residence in Formosa, was the great Taiyal tribe
of the north--reputed to be the most bloodthirsty on the island, and
whose territory now covers almost as much as that of all the other
tribes together.[33] From Taiyal territory I sometimes “prowled”
over into that of the Saisett and Bunun tribes. This was perhaps not
strictly according to official permission; I was told that it was “too
dangerous.” But the spice of danger--perhaps also the “forbidden-fruit”
element--made these walks the more interesting; and I still have my
head on my shoulders.



The southern tribes I approached by water from the east coast; my
first visit to them being during the first Christmas--rather, New
Year[34]--vacation that I spent on the island. Of this visit I retain a
somewhat vivid recollection, for two reasons. One because of the great
cliffs of the east coast, a glimpse of which I caught in passing; the
other because of the novel mode of debarkation, necessitated by stormy
weather, at Pinan,[35] a port in Ami territory, just north of that
occupied by the Paiwan and Piyuma tribes.

I embarked at Keelung, on one of the small coasting steamers, sailing
around the east coast to Takao,[36] the southernmost port of the
island. It was just south of Giran[37] that we passed the great cliffs,
said to be the highest in the world. For about twenty-five miles these
giant cliffs rise perpendicularly from the sea to a height of about
6,000 feet. This towering wall of granite--for such the rock seemed to
be--is one of the most imposing sights that in my wanderings about the
world I have seen.

The weather was grey and drizzling when we left Keelung, but it was
just after we had left Karenko,[38] the first port south of the great
cliffs--the second day out--that the storm broke. Those who have
weathered a storm in a small boat know what this means. In all the
guide-books, and other books dealing with Formosa, that I have seen,
it is said that the sea-route, up and down the coast of the island,
“can be safely followed only during six months of the year,” i.e. the
spring and summer months. “Safely” is probably, like other words, a
matter of individual definition. Personally I should be inclined to
substitute the word “comfortably” for “safely,” judging from my own
experience, both on this trip and on a subsequent one. That is, as
far as the actual voyage is concerned, if one be content to remain on
board the steamer from Keelung to Takao, where there is a good harbour.
With the exception of one or two who disembarked at Karenko, the other
passengers--all Japanese, naturally--seemed glad enough to do this. I,
however, had not come on this trip for the sake of the sea-voyage, or
with the object of reaching Takao--now a Japanese town, the southern
terminus of the railway which starts from Keelung in the north--and
which I could much more easily have reached by rail had I wished to
visit it. Takao, like all the other large towns of the island, is
on the western side of the great mountain range,[39] contains no
aborigines, and, especially to one who has lived for some years in
Japan, is of no especial interest.

The purpose of my trip was to study the aborigines of the east coast
and those who lived in the narrow south-eastern peninsula of the
island. It had not been possible for me to obtain police permission
to cross--or to attempt to cross--the great mountain range; therefore
I knew that my only hope of studying the eastern and south-eastern
aboriginal tribes lay in landing at Pinan. The captain tried to
dissuade me. He said that no man among his passengers would think
of landing; much less should a woman attempt it. Would I not wait
until another trip when the weather was calmer, or when I had a
companion--one of my own race (on this occasion I happened to be quite
alone and the only “foreigner” on board). He really did not like to
take the responsibility.... But I assured him that he would be absolved
of all responsibility “if anything happened” to me--a euphemism that
he several times used, in his rather good, Scotch-accented English (he
had been about the world among seafaring men). Also that my Government
would not hold his Government responsible if “anything happened.” My
blood would be on my own head.

The captain at last rather lost patience. He told me of some
_sensible_ missionaries--he stressed the adjective (he seemed to
think I was a senseless one; apparently he could not conceive of any
white woman wanting to go among “heathen” except for the purpose of
“converting” them)--who in similar stormy weather had sailed around
the island three times before they had dared to attempt a landing at
a Chinese-Formosan village on the coast. I explained that the length
of my vacation would not make such a proceeding possible in my case,
and that rather than go on to Takao, I preferred to go ashore--or
to attempt to do so--in one of the canoes in which some men of the
Ami tribe had put out from shore, and in which they were evidently
endeavouring to reach the ship. I was told it was their custom to
do this, whenever a Japanese ship approached, in order to barter

The captain said rather grimly that would be my “only chance on this
trip,” as, with the exception of a few articles which he would give the
savages, if they succeeded in reaching the ship when it came to anchor,
he would not attempt to discharge the cargo he had for Pinan, but would
defer that until the return voyage from Takao....

The Ami canoes succeeded in reaching the ship, and I succeeded in
persuading the captain to have a ladder lowered for me to descend.
This, however, only after further argument, for the captain declared
he had believed I was only “bluffing” (where he had learned this
delightfully expressive word I do not know), when I had said that I
was willing to trust myself to the Ami and to one of their canoes.
He said, however, that these coast Ami were _sek-huan_--“half-tame,”
he explained, when interpreting the expression--and that as far as
my life was concerned, this would probably not be in danger, if I
succeeded in reaching the shore; that is, so long as I did not venture
into the interior. On this point I would make no promise, and the
captain did not press the matter. He was probably glad to be rid of
a passenger whom he evidently regarded as a missionary of less than
average missionary intelligence. To do him justice, however, when the
canoes were tossing on the waves at the side of the ship, he called
down to one of the savages, who was evidently the chief, or leader,
of those who had ventured out, a few words in mixed Japanese and Ami
dialect. This he assured me was an order to look well after my life
and comfort. The fact that I understood enough Japanese to know that
the captain referred to me as the “mad one,” did not detract from my
appreciation of his order.

I clung to the ladder until the crest of a wave brought the little
canoe sufficiently high for me to drop into the arms of the chief, who
deposited me, also the small bag I had with me--which one of the crew
of the steamer had thrown down to him--in the bottom of the boat. Then
shouting an order to the men in the several other canoes, the chief and
the one other man in the same canoe with him--and me--began to paddle
for shore. The order that the chief shouted was evidently to the effect
that the men in the other boats were to wait and get certain things
from the steamer, for on looking back, when the canoe in which I was
rose on the crest of a wave, I could see bundles being lowered from
the ship’s side into the canoes. What these contained I do not know,
and soon it became impossible to watch, for the waves rose higher; the
salt water was in my eyes, and was pouring constantly over my head and
face. I was drenched to the skin, in spite of the supposedly waterproof
coat that I wore. The chief’s assistant had given up paddling and was
vigorously bailing the boat with a large gourd, or calabash. The chief
alone paddled.

I had been in the boats of other Pacific islanders; these had been much
more skilfully managed. I soon realized that in seamanship the Formosan
aborigines could not compare with the Hawaians, the Filipinos, or with
most of the peoples of the South Seas; perhaps for one reason, because
their canoes carry no outrigger. Or is this effect, rather than cause?
Is it because of their lack of seamanship at the present time that they
venture into the waves in outriggerless canoes?

At any rate, whatever they lack in skill in the navigation of
sea-craft, the Ami at least are not lacking in personal bravery,
or in a sense of responsibility. When the canoe was swamped by the
waves--as, soon after leaving the ship, I realized must inevitably be
the case--the chief motioned me to get on his back, and when I had
done so, began to swim for shore. He did this quite coolly, almost as
if it were a matter of course, although he had never before seen a
white woman; apparently regarding the whole affair from the Oriental,
“it is ordered,” point of view. The other man in the boat seemed for a
moment to be more at a loss, but at an order from the chief he dropped
the now useless paddle, which for some reason (or none) he still held,
and rescued my little travelling-bag, first taking the handle between
his teeth, then, in spite of the waves, managing in a rather dexterous
fashion--by means of the strip of homespun hemp-cloth which he had been
wearing as a loin-cloth--to lash it to his shoulders, swimming with
legs and one arm as he did so.

Thus from the water--literally--I reached the territory of the east
coast tribes and southern tribes of the island. What I learned of
their manners and customs I shall write in its proper place.[40] But I
want here to record my appreciation of the courage and also the cool,
matter-of-course calmness of the Ami chief, whose presence of mind
undoubtedly saved my life on this occasion, as my own awkward attempts
at swimming would never have carried me through those waves. So rough
were they that it was with difficulty I was able even to cling to the
back of the chief. Had the water been colder I should probably not have
been able to do so. But at that latitude--a little south of the Tropic
of Cancer--sea-water, even in January, is never numbingly cold.

Rather different was my experience on the occasion of another winter
vacation during my stay in Formosa. That vacation I spent in the
mountains, as I wished to visit certain sub-tribes of the Taiyal
that I had not seen. Because of the altitude, it was--certainly by
contrast with the plain below--bitterly cold. There had been flurries
of snow during the day. I had with me, as guide and luggage-bearer, a
Chinese-Formosan coolie, an elderly man, who was supposed to be well
acquainted with the mountain trails--to have tramped them since his
youth, when as a charcoal-burner he had ventured into the mountains
for fuel. Thus had he recommended himself to me. However, perhaps
because of the snowy greyness of the day, he managed to lose his way.
I had--fortunately--a pocket compass with me. In such Chinese-Formosan
dialect as I had acquired--inadequate enough--I attempted to explain
the meaning of the pointing needle. My guide declared he understood,
and said that in order to regain the trail we must go in a certain
direction. Going in this way, it was necessary to cross a stream, which
usually was little more than a shallow brook. Because of the winter
rains,[41] however, this had become so swollen that it was almost a
torrent, and when we reached it we found, instead of a shallow stream
that could easily have been waded, or crossed over on stepping-stones,
a great body of water, dashing over fallen trees, and swirling around
boulders which normally lay far beyond its banks.

My guide, accustomed, as are all Chinese coolies--both in Formosa and
on the mainland--to carrying burdens on his back, volunteered thus
to carry me, declaring he could easily do so. I acquiesced; and thus
“pick-a-back” fashion we started. The guide was a tall man, and, though
the water came well up on his thighs, he felt his way carefully with
a stout staff that he carried, and all seemed going well, in spite of
the fact that it was growing dark, when, without warning, the man gave
a startled, guttural cry--in the unexpected fashion of the usually
phlegmatic Chinese when really frightened--shook me from his shoulders,
and, stooping until his whole body was submerged in the water, shuffled
rapidly to a boulder behind which he crouched. Dropped thus suddenly
almost to my waist into very cold water, which was running with a swift
current, I was nearly swept off my feet. I managed, however, to make my
way to a boulder, near the one behind which my guide was cowering. As I
drew myself up out of the water on to the boulder, I angrily demanded
of him the reason of his extraordinary behaviour.

“Light of Heaven,” the man replied, in a low voice, between chattering
teeth, “be not angry. It is a _seban_--a head-cutter--there.” With a
motion of his head he indicated a figure that I had not seen, standing
at the edge of the water.

“I was wary,” my guide continued, “I heard a movement in the bushes.
I looked up--I saw. Now our heads must surely go. As it was with our
fathers----” The man continued to murmur, growing more incoherent in
his terror, and evidently more than half benumbed with the cold, as I
found myself also becoming.

I decided that possible decapitation was preferable to
freezing--especially as the agreeable stage of pleasant dreams, which
is said to accompany actual death from cold, had not been reached;
only that of extreme discomfort. The small weapon that I usually
carried with me on these mountain trips was in my hand-bag, which,
with my other impedimenta, was on the bank that we had left. My guide
had promised to return for these things after carrying me across the
water. However, there are times when it is better to flee from evils
that one knows.... I hailed the _seban_, and, although he spoke a
variety of Taiyal dialect a little different from that of which I knew
a few words, he evidently understood the situation. Indeed, under the
circumstances, words were scarcely necessary for such understanding.
The man’s grin of comprehension pleased me. It was so human--so
_Aryanly_ human--that it was refreshing after the mask-like stolidity
of both Chinese and Japanese to which for some time I had been
accustomed; for these two peoples, however differing in other respects,
are on this point at one. They equally regard it as a mark of the
lowest breeding to allow any expression of emotion--of genuine feeling,
of whatever kind--to be reflected in their features. Even the coolies,
imitating their masters, have, as far as possible, adopted the code of
the latter on this point. All wear a mask that is seldom, or never,
dropped. The _seban_, however, are not trained in Confucian ethics;
hence the play of joy and sorrow, of amusement and of other emotions,
on their more mobile features.

The expression of that particular _seban_, at the moment, was one of
mixed amusement and sympathy. I am afraid that he rather enjoyed the
plight of the cowering Chinaman. For generations the Chinese-Formosans
and the aborigines of the island have been hereditary foes. However,
I made him understand that my guide--or the one who was supposed to
act in that capacity--was not to be molested. The _seban_ nodded in
comprehension. Then by signs he made me understand that he would--if
I so chose--carry me in safety to his side of the water, which he had
seen I was trying to reach. My clothing was drenched, I was chilled to
the bone, my fingers I found too numb to move. I realized that my hold
on the boulder could not last much longer. The Chinese I knew could
not be depended upon in the proximity of the _seban_. Indeed, the poor
wretch (the Chinese) I feared could scarcely manage to get himself out
of the water, so completely had he been unnerved by the unexpected
appearance of the _seban_--one belonging, it seemed, to a sub-tribe
which he had especial reason to fear. For me it was a choice between
trusting myself unaided to the torrent--and, in my benumbed condition,
I knew I should soon be swept off my feet--and accepting the offer of
the friendly _seban_. Naturally I chose the latter alternative.

When I signalled the _seban_ my acceptance of his offer, he again
grinned, took his knife from his loin-cloth and, holding it out of
reach of the water, stepped into the stream, which swirled about
his loins. I was glad enough to slip from my precarious hold on the
boulder to the shoulders of the _seban_, who, true to his word--as in
my dealings with the aborigines I found them always to be with those
who have not betrayed them--carried me safely to the shore. Then
still holding me on his shoulders, for I was too benumbed with cold
and fatigue to walk, he strode on to a fire a little distance away,
around which a number of his people were gathered. I learned later that
these were members of a village community higher up in the mountains,
whose bamboo huts had been destroyed by recent torrential rains. The
homeless people were camping temporarily near the foot of a great
tree, in the branches of which the spirits of their ancestors were
supposed to dwell; also the spirits of the Great White Fathers of Long
Ago--obviously the seventeenth-century Dutch--to whom the priestesses
of the demolished village had been offering constant prayers. My
appearance among them was hailed as an answer to their prayers, which
accounted for the fact, as I also later learned, that when I was
carried into camp--a very benumbed and bedraggled goddess--both men and
women fell on their faces, and some of the children fled shrieking in

I have since wondered whether perhaps these two chance occurrences--one
a storm at sea, the other a torrential rainfall in the mountains, which
by accident brought me among two divisions of the aborigines, one those
of the east coast, the other those of the northern mountains, in the
fashion that I have described--had not something to do with the very
friendly relations which existed between these “Naturvölker” and me.
Certainly the rôle of the sea-born (or river-born) goddess was not one
that I was anxious to play, or that I had in mind, on either occasion.
But a few chance words of some of the people--after I had learned a
little of their language--led me to believe that the fact that I had
“come to them out of the water” contributed to the esteem in which I
was held; made certain in their minds the conviction that I was the
spirit of one of the beloved white rulers of old, returned from the
elements. (Why a spirit should choose this particularly uncomfortable
method of approach--or of return--was not quite clear.) That I had
come among a matripotestal people probably accounted for the fact that
none of the aborigines seemed to think it strange that the spirit of
one of the Great White Fathers should choose to reappear in the body
of a woman. That such a spirit had returned seemed to be the general
supposition among the northern tribes. Among those of the south there
were some who held, apparently, that a Goddess of the Sea (or “from out
of the sea”) had come to them--one to whom semi-annual offerings were
customarily made.

When I realized the reason for the regard in which I was held by these
people a sense of the ludicrous overcame me. School-day struggles with
Virgil--buried in some region of the subconscious--were recalled; these
even more strongly when one day I overheard a discussion among some
of the tribespeople regarding my walk. I neither hobbled as did the
Chinese-Formosan women, nor did I walk with the toed-in, short steps
of the Japanese women (a few of the coast aborigines had seen Japanese

“Feet strangely covered, stone-defying. With no burden on her back,
freely, with long steps, she walks, as must the females of the gods
from whom we spring.”

“_Et vera incessu patuit dea_,” etc. Curiously similar the idea,
though the words in which this time it was voiced were those of this
strange Malay dialect.... The childhood of the world! Still in odd
comers it exists, and can, with seeking, be found.


[30] Rickshas--small man-drawn carriages--(see illustration) could be
pulled only about the city and its immediate environs, and it was not
city or suburban life in which I was interested.

[31] See illustrations.

[32] It is due to the efforts of Mr. Hosui and Mr. Marui that the skull
of a recently decapitated member of the Taiyal tribe has been presented
to the Museum of Oxford University.

[33] See map.

[34] Quite naturally, Christmas means nothing to the Japanese. Most of
those who have not been missionized do not even know on what day this
_seiyō-jin matsuri_ (foreign festival) falls; those who live in country
districts have not even heard of it. Their celebration of the winter
solstice is at the New Year, which is the great festival time of the
year. At this season interesting ceremonies are observed, and quaint
and picturesque games played by old and young alike.

[35] See map.

[36] See map.

[37] See map.

[38] See map.

[39] See map.

[40] See Part II of this book.

[41] Winter is the rainy season in northern Formosa; summer the rainy
season in the southern part of the island.



Hakkas and other Chinese-Formosans, Japanese, Aborigines.

As regards this particular odd corner of the world, naturally, in
my peregrinations about the island, I picked up a certain amount of
information. Among other things, I learned that those who make up the
vast majority of the population of the island at the present time,
and who are known as “Formosans”--this not only among themselves, but
who also are so called (i.e. _Taiwan-jin_, “men of Formosa”) by their
Japanese conquerors, and by Europeans resident in the island--are
Chinese; that is, descendants of the immigrants from the mainland of
China. Of these, between 80,000 and 90,000 are Hakkas, originally
from the Kwantung Province of China--a people rather despised by the
other Chinese.[42] The remaining nearly 3,000,000 “Formosans” are
descendants of Chinese from the Fukien Province of the mainland, and
most of them speak the Amoy dialect of Chinese, though a few speak the
dialect of Foochow.

The Japanese, who since the treaty of Shimonoseki (1895) have been
masters of the island, number between 120,000 and 125,000, and are
constantly increasing in population. All official positions, and those
of authority of any sort, are in the hands of the Japanese as is now
all the wealth of the island.

The aboriginal population it is naturally more difficult to estimate.
But the number of the aborigines at the present time cannot, in
reality, exceed 105,000. Personally I doubt if a carefully taken
census would reveal that number.[43] Certainly the aboriginal
population is steadily diminishing, and all tribes are being driven
constantly farther up into the mountains; or, in the case of certain
tribes--such as the Ami and Paiwan--are being more rigidly confined to
the precipitous, barren east coast. The whole of the island--including
the marvellously fertile great plains on the west side of the central
mountain range--was naturally once in the hands of the aborigines.
But during the Chinese dominion of the island, from the conquest of
Koksinga (1662) to the close of the Sino-Japanese War (1895), the
aboriginal population was--if all reports and all records, including
those of the Chinese themselves, speak truly--treated with systematic
cruelty and with ruthless greed and rapacity. Sometimes by wholesale
slaughter, sometimes by fraud and cunning, the Chinese gradually
pushed the aborigines back into the central mountain range, or, as the
Japanese to-day are doing, confined them to the sterile, ill-watered
east coast, and thus gained for themselves possession of the whole of
the broad, level, western sea-board; and even of those valleys between
the mountains where rice and tea could be made to grow. Chicanery was
often cheaper than gunpowder. An aborigine would fancy a gun or a red
blanket. A Chinaman would supply him with the commodity desired and
would take in exchange, or more frequently “as security,” fertile
fields. Naturally--to one who knows the habits of the aborigines--the
“security” was seldom redeemed, and the Chinaman became the owner of
the land.

If an effort were really made by an exceptionally industrious or
far-seeing aborigine to redeem his land, some method was usually found
by the Chinaman to thwart this effort. The land remained in Chinese

Since 1895 all the land of agricultural value in the island has passed
from the hands of the Chinese-Formosans into those of their Japanese
conquerors; this usually by force and extortion, the Chinese having
suffered at the hands of the Japanese, much as they had forced the
aborigines to suffer at their hands during the preceding two hundred

The well-being, or the reverse, of the aborigines has been little
affected by the change of masters. On this point I should be
contradicted by the Japanese, who would point out that they have
introduced the eating, and--as far as this is possible in the
mountains--the cultivation, of rice, instead of millet, among the
aborigines. Also they would lay stress upon the fact that they have
established among the aborigines schools for the “teaching of Japanese
language, Japanese customs, and Japanese manners.” Apart, however, from
wondering just how the displacement of millet by rice, as a staple
of diet, and compulsory training in Japanese language and customs
and Japanese “good manners” will be of benefit to the aborigine (the
eating of white rice will probably give him berri-berri--as it has
given this disease to so many of the Japanese--from which up to this
time he has been spared by the eating of millet), one notes that the
Japanese in their reports--official and otherwise--of the efforts
of their Government in the direction of the “civilization of the
aboriginal tribes” fail to remark upon the fact that, because of their
establishment of camphor “factories”[45] (see illustration) throughout
the mountains, they are encroaching further upon the territory of the
aborigines than ever the Chinese did. Also they fail to remark upon
the fact that bombs are dropped from aeroplanes upon villages of the
aborigines, in order to impress the latter with the omnipotence of the
Japanese Government, and with that of its Divine Emperor.[46]


_The work is done by Chinese-Formosan coolies under the supervision of
Japanese officials. The manufacture of camphor, like that of opium, is
a Japanese Government monopoly._]

As a matter of fact, the only people ever dominant in Formosa who
seem to have treated the aborigines with either kindness or equity
were the Dutch during their thirty-seven years’ over-lordship in the
seventeenth century. The story of this period of just and kindly rule
in their island has been handed down among the aborigines from parent
to child and still remains a tradition among them--one of a Golden
Age long past; just how long of course they have no idea, but in the
time of “many grandfathers back.” There is a tradition that the
Dutch even taught the aborigines to read, and also to write their own
dialect--this in the “sign-marks of the gods” (Roman script). Old
documents written by their ancestors are said to have existed among
them even a generation ago. These are reported to have been confiscated
by the Japanese, as part of a systematic and far-reaching attempt to
eradicate the memory of any culture other than Japanese. Whether or not
this story of the confiscation of old documents be true I do not know,
but certainly during my two years’ residence in Formosa I was not able
to find a single document of this sort among the aborigines.

Only the memory of past culture given by “fair gods who came over the
sea in white-winged boats”--or, as some of the tribes have it, “came up
out of the sea”--remains.

It seems that there exists among some of the tribes a belief that
a reincarnation of a former “Great White Chief”--presumably Father
Candidius, a Dutch priest, who devoted his life to the care, spiritual
and temporal, of the aboriginal people--will return and help them throw
off the yoke of their Chinese and Japanese conquerors.[47] Hence the
welcome which a fair-haired, blue-eyed person receives from them, and
the reverence with which he--or she--is treated: their appreciation
of such a one being in rather marked contrast with the point of view
of both Chinese and Japanese, who speak of a fair-haired--or even
brown-haired--blue-eyed man or woman as a “red-haired, green-eyed


[42] One of the distinguishing characteristics of the Hakkas is that
the women never “bind” their feet; whereas the feet of all the other
Chinese-Formosan women are “bound,” i.e. crippled and distorted. This
“sin of omission” on the part of the Hakkas seems to have something to
do with the contempt in which they are held by the other Chinese, both
in Formosa and on the mainland.

[43] The _Encyclopædia Britannica_, 11th edition, gives the aboriginal
population of Formosa as 104,334. This is probably a fairly correct
estimate, although the Japanese claim that 120,000 is more nearly
correct, they wishing to give the impression that the aboriginal
population is increasing, rather than diminishing.

[44] During my residence in Formosa I personally saw instances of
the most hideous cruelty on the part of the Japanese toward the
Chinese-Formosans, and of barbaric torture, officially inflicted, as
punishment for the most trivial offences (as later--in the spring of
1919--I saw the same thing in the other Japanese colony, Korea, on the
part of the Japanese toward the gentle Koreans). But this is an aspect
of Japanese colonization with which in this book I shall not deal.

[45] The camphor “factories” established in the mountains--such as the
one illustrated--for the extraction of crude camphor from the camphor
wood are naturally of a primitive kind. The crude camphor is brought
down to Taihoku to be refined.

[46] This actually happened during my residence in Formosa, the
Japanese boasting of the cleverness of the expedient, and ridiculing
the aborigines for believing--as they did--that the aeroplane was a
huge bird, and the bomb its poisonous excrement.

[47] In connection with the care, especially the medical treatment,
which Father Candidius gave to the native people, naturally many
stories of miracles have grown up.





Physical Appearance pointing to Indoneso-Malay Origin--Linguistic
Evidence and Evidence of Handicraft--Tribal Divisions of the
Aborigines--Moot Question as to the Existence of a Pigmy People in the
Interior of the Island.

While the aborigines are divided into a number of tribes, and are
also grouped--by the Chinese--according to the “greenness” or
“ripeness” of their barbarity, yet they may, collectively speaking, be
regarded as belonging to the Indoneso-Malay stock, many tribes being
strikingly similar in appearance to certain tribes in the Philippine
Islands. Hamay, writing under the head of “Les Races Malaïques” in
_L’Anthropologie_ for 1896, says that the aborigines of Formosa
recalled to him the Igorotes of Northern Luzon (Philippines) as well as
the Malays of Singapore.

Regarding the Malays of Singapore, I cannot speak from personal
observation, as I have not been in Singapore; but as I spent six
months in the Philippines, shortly before going to Formosa,[48] I
am able to confirm Hamay’s statement as to the resemblance between
Filipinos and Formosan aborigines. As regards the tribe of Igorotes,
this resemblance extends also, to a certain degree, to social customs
and religious beliefs. Considering physical resemblance alone,
however, I should say that this is more striking between the Formosan
aborigines and the Tagalogs of Luzon than between the former and
the Igorotes--that is, where the Tagalogs are unmixed with Spanish
blood. The resemblance between the Tagalogs and the Taiyal[49] tribe
of northern Formosa is particularly striking as regards physical
characteristics. The resemblance, however, ends here. The Tagalogs,
as the result of Spanish influence, are so-called “Christians”; the
Taiyal are not. The latter (Taiyal of Formosa) are a singularly
chaste, honest, and fair-dealing people; the former (Tagalogs) are

At least one Formosan tribe--the Ami, of the east coast--has a
tradition that its forbears came “in boats across a great sea from an
island somewhere in the south.” To this tradition I shall have occasion
to refer again.

In connection with the racial affinities of the Formosan aborigines it
is only fair to state that Arnold Schetelig says he “found to his great
surprise that Polynesian and Maori skulls in the London College of
Surgeons presented striking analogies with those collected by himself
in Formosa.”

One can only surmise that the reason for the “great surprise” felt
by Schetelig upon noting the resemblance between Polynesian and
Formosan skulls was because he had previously stressed the fact of the
linguistic similarity between modern Malay and the dialect spoken by
the Formosan aborigines, and had gone on to point out the “remarkable
harmony between speech and physical characteristics.” However, as,
since the time that Schetelig wrote, kinship of race between Indonesian
and Polynesian--or, at least, strong evidence pointing in the direction
of a common origin--has been established, there need, at the present
time, be no occasion for surprise; since Polynesian and Malay, or
“Proto-Malay,” peoples doubtless sprang from a common stock, having its
fountain-head in Indonesia.

Evidence which points strongly to an Indonesian origin of the
aborigines of Formosa exists in certain of their articles of
handicraft, notably the peculiar Indonesian form of loom, the
nose-flute, and the musical bow. (To these I shall refer at greater
length under the head of ARTS AND CRAFTS.) Also the custom of certain
tribes--notably the Yami, of Botel Tobago--of building their houses on
piles.[50] This in a climate, and under conditions, where there is no
material need for such construction. When asked the reason for this,
one gets the reply customary to any question that one may be foolish
enough to ask as to the “reason why” of any custom whatsoever, viz.
“Thus have our fathers done.”

To my mind, however, the strongest evidence showing Proto-Malay,
rather than Chinese, Melanesian, or other affinity, is supplied by the
language--considering the dialects collectively--of the aborigines.

[Illustration: MEN OF THE BUNUN TRIBE.

_Japanese policemen in background._]


I am aware that the evidence of linguistic affinity as in any way
indicating that of race is rather disregarded by many anthropologists,
on the ground that contact--commercial or otherwise--between peoples
often affects linguistic interchange, or results in the introduction
of words from the language of one people into that of another. With
this I strongly agree, as regards different races living on the same
continent (the different races of Africa being a case in point);
or even as regards people living on neighbouring islands. With the
Formosan aborigines, however, there has been no contact within historic
times between themselves and other branches of the Malay or Indonesian
race. They themselves are not a seafaring folk, and the people who have
invaded their island--certainly since about the sixth century A.D.,
when Chinese records first speak of it, during the Sui Dynasty--have
been successive waves of the Chinese themselves, the Dutch, the
Spanish, possibly the Portuguese, and the Japanese. In spite of this
fact, the language to which the Formosan dialects show closest affinity
is Malay proper, that spoken on the Malay Peninsula, although there
is some resemblance to that spoken in Java, judging from Malayan and
Javanese words given in books, such as Wallace’s _Malay Archipelago_.

It has been estimated that about one-sixth of the words of the various
Formosan dialects, i.e. those spoken by the different tribes, have
a direct affinity with the Malayan language--that spoken by the
Malays proper. With so large a proportion of words bearing a close
resemblance, and taking into account the centuries-long isolation of
the Formosan tribes--as regards contact with other Malay or Indonesian
peoples--there can be little reasonable doubt that the languages have
sprung from a common stock, as probably the races have done.

Regarding the tribal divisions of the aborigines, I shall mention
the nine tribes into which they are now usually grouped--in the
spelling of the names following the Japanese, rather than the Chinese,
pronunciation, viz.: Taiyal, Saisett, Bunun, Tsuou, Tsarisen, Paiwan,
Piyuma, Ami, and Yami. This is as nearly as the Japanese--or, for that
matter the English--can imitate the pronunciation of the respective
names by which these tribes-people call themselves. Each name seems
merely to mean “Man” in the dialect of the tribe using it, except Ami
(sometimes pronounced by themselves “Kami”), which means “Men of the
North.” This is the tribe which has the tradition of having originally
come from “somewhere in the south, across a great water.”

Mr. Ishii--the Japanese writer and lecturer on Formosa--mentions
only seven tribes of aborigines, omitting the Tsarisen and Piyuma.
This is according to the present Japanese system of grouping. They
(the Japanese) say that it is because of “linguistic affinity,” i.e.
because the dialects spoken by the Piyuma and Tsarisen resemble the
tongue spoken by the Paiwan, that they group these tribes together.
Perhaps! Certainly it is a fact that the tribes omitted from Japanese
enumeration are rapidly disappearing; and their conquerors scarcely
like to call attention to that fact. At any rate, Mr. Ishii is honest
enough to admit that “the Piyuma possess a peculiar social organization
and should be treated as separate from the Paiwan.” The Saisett is
another tribe that is rapidly disappearing. Soon there will be only six
tribes left to enumerate--that is, very soon. Soon, as history goes,
there probably will be none.

The ethnological--or rather, ethnographical--map included in this book
indicates the various areas in which the different tribes live, or
over which they roam. However, the “Aiyu-sen” (military guard line) of
the Japanese is gradually, but steadily, being drawn closer about the
territory supposed to belong to the aborigines; and well within this
territory--even in the mountain range, in which the aborigines were
left undisturbed during the Chinese rule of the island--the Japanese
Government has now established stations for cutting down camphor
trees, and at some points machinery for extracting crude camphor, to
be refined later in the great factory in Taihoku. The work at the
“camphor stations” or “factories” in “savage territory” is done by
Chinese-Formosan coolies under the direction of Japanese overseers. It
is through this territory that the trolly (or _toro_) lines--referred
to in Part I, page 69--have been constructed, over which the
man-propelled cars are pushed up the steep mountain-sides.

As the tribes now exist, I should consider the Taiyal, of the north,
the largest, both in population and also as regards the territory
over which its members roam.[51] Next to the Taiyal, the Ami, of the
east coast, is the largest tribe, both in population and in extent
of territory; next, the Paiwan, of the south. On this point--that of
the relative size of population of the aboriginal tribes--I should be
inclined to agree with the Bureau of Aboriginal Affairs (Japanese),
of Formosa, rather than with Mr. Ishii, who considers the Paiwan the
largest of the aboriginal tribes as regards population.

The Japanese usually speak of the “Savages of the North” and the
“Savages of the South”; those “of the North” being the Taiyal--or
“tattooed tribe,” so called because of the rather remarkable way in
which the faces of these people are tattooed, of which I shall speak
more in detail under another heading--together with the few remaining
members of the Saisett tribe. In speaking of the Taiyal tribe, the
“Report of the Control of the Aborigines in Formosa,” issued by the
Japanese Government, says: “Their district [that of the Taiyal]
comprises an area of about 500 square _ri_ (2,977 square miles), with a
population of about 30,000; _but on account of the advancement of the
guard-line in recent years, their district is gradually becoming less_”
(italics my own).

This statement as to the district of the Taiyal “gradually becoming
less” (something which is acclaimed as being to the credit of the
Japanese Government) might with equal truth be made regarding the
territory of the other aboriginal tribes, those who are grouped
together by the Japanese under the general term “Savages of the South,”
about all of whom the cordon is gradually being drawn tighter.

The Taiyal is not only the largest and most powerful aboriginal tribe
on the island, but it is also--perhaps for this reason--the boldest and
least submissive. Most of the adult men of this tribe have upon their
faces the tattoo-mark signifying that they have at least one human head
to their credit. The other head-hunting tribes of the island are the
Bunun and the Paiwan.


(_See page 107._)]


(_The tiny island just south of Formosa proper._) _Note the difference
of type, as compared with the more northern tribes._]

In considering the divisions of the Formosan aborigines, it would be
well for present-day investigators to guard against the error into
which some European writers on the subject, in the early numbers
of the _China Review_ (1873-4), seem to have fallen--that is, the
error of regarding the Chinese terms of _Pepo-huan_ ([Illustration])
_Sek-huan_ ([Illustration]), and _Chin-huan_ ([Illustration]), as
signifying ethnic or tribal divisions. In reality, these terms--in the
Amoy dialect of Chinese--mean, taking the words in the order given
above, respectively: “Barbarian of the Plain,” “Ripe Barbarian” (i.e.
semi-civilized), and “Green Barbarian” (i.e. wild, or altogether
savage). These terms were applied by the Chinese indiscriminately
to the various tribes, irrespective of difference of dialect or of
physical characteristics.

Regarding the latter point--physical characteristics: while, broadly
speaking, all the aborigines of Formosa conform to the general “Malay
type,” yet one who has been much among the different tribes can
distinguish without much difficulty--quite apart from difference in
tattoo-marking--between the tall, rather prognathous Taiyal of the
north; the more mongoloid type of the Ami and Paiwan on the east coast;
the handsomer, aquiline-nose type--approximating to that of certain
tribes of the American Indians--of the central mountain-range Bunun;
and the ever-smiling, gentler, darker Yami,[52] of Botel Tobago
(Japanese “Koto Sho”), the tiny island just south of Formosa proper
(see illustrations showing types of the different tribes).

To return for a moment to the Chinese system of classification--one
based on various degrees of culture (from the Chinese point of
view) existing among the aborigines: The _Pepo-huan_ are about
as non-existent in Formosa to-day as are the ancient Britons in
present-day England. They--the _Pepo-huan_--formerly lived in the
eastern plains, and the few who have not been exterminated have been
amalgamated with the Chinese-Formosan population. The indefinite term
of _Sek-huan_ is sometimes applied to those members of the Ami and
Paiwan tribes who have come most closely into contact with the Chinese.
Under the term _Chin-huan_ are included all the other tribes of the

Both Keane (in _Man Past and Present_) and T. L. Bullock, formerly
British Consul in Takao[53] (in _China Review_, 1873), speak of a
portion of the _Sek-huan_ as being of light colour, compared with the
other aborigines, as having remarkably long and prominent teeth, large,
coarse mouth, prognathous jaw, and as having a weak constitution.
Both writers suspect a strain of Dutch blood in these people--though
just why weakness of constitution should be associated with Dutch
descent I do not know. Apparently weakness of constitution has led
to non-survival in a country, and under conditions, where the law of
“survival of the fittest” holds rigidly true. Certainly I could find
no trace of these people--taken as a group--either in the mountains
or on the east coast. Half a century makes a great difference in
an aboriginal people, especially when contending against stronger,
conquering races.

The only extant people among the aborigines who can truthfully
be described as having a “fair complexion”--as far as I could
discover--are a subdivision, or local group, of the Taiyal, called
Taruko. The Taruko group live within a restricted territory in the
north-eastern part of the island, just behind the famous high cliffs.
Not only are the Taruko of lighter colour than the other aborigines,
but they have more regular and more clearly cut features. Ishii states
that “they [the Taruko] are believed to be the oldest inhabitants of
the island.” Of this I, personally, could find no confirmation, though
Mr. Ishii may have good grounds for making the statement. At any rate,
there is a tradition, both among themselves and among the neighbouring
Taiyal, that the Taruko originally lived on the western side of the
great mountains, and within the past few generations have migrated
to their present habitat. If this be the case it is possible that
they may have a strain of Dutch blood. Certainly they are famous for
their intrepid bravery and unbroken spirit. They came under Japanese
domination only in 1914; it is said they were never under that of the
Chinese. These people hold a myth as to their origin, differing from
that held by the other aborigines. Of this I shall speak under the head

Before leaving the subject of the ethnology of the aborigines,
reference must be made to the moot question as to whether or not
there exists in Formosa a pigmy people similar to the Aetas of the
Philippines. Regarding this most interesting point, I can only say
that I was never able to discover a race of pigmies--a tribe or group,
however small. But I did find, while in the territory of the Taiyal,
isolated instances of individuals with apparently a pigmy strain. This
particularly in the case of certain women--three or four. I do not
refer, of course, only to the difference in size between these women
and the Taiyal women--or the women of any of the other tribes; but to
certain characteristics of physique in which they radically differ. For
one thing, the shape of the head is distinctly different, that of these
very small women being more negroid than Malay, and curiously infantile
even for the negroid type of skull--i.e. with disproportionately
bulging forehead. Also the whole shape of the body is more that of a
child than is the case with most adult women, either among Formosan
aborigines or others. The opposition between the great toe and the
other toes is more marked than with the other aborigines. And--perhaps
most significant feature of all--the hair of these women is distinctly
“crinkly,” whereas that of the other aborigines of the main island, as
of all Malay peoples, is absolutely straight--a fact of which the small
women are evidently ashamed.[54]

The colour of these pigmy women--if such they may be called--is,
however, not as dark as that of the Philippine Aetas or the Andamanese
Islanders. On the contrary, it is rather lighter than that of the
surrounding tribes-people.

Unfortunately, I did not take measurements of these small women--in
fact, I had no instruments for accurately doing this--but I do not
think their height can be over four feet two or three inches. An
interesting point in connection with them is that the other aborigines
among whom they live regard these women as being “different.” They
themselves--those whom I saw--were taciturn and seemed averse to
expressing themselves. Also curious, in a tribe where few divorces
occur and seemingly little marital infelicity, all these tiny
women whom I personally knew were divorced or separated from their
husbands--Taiyal men; “mutual incompatibility” apparently being the

What the true explanation is of the existence of these “pigmean” women,
differing in colour, in features, and in physique from those of the
surrounding tribe, I do not know. It is possible of course that the
few whom I saw were merely anomalies--dwarf individuals of the tribe
in the midst of whom they lived. But this would scarcely account for
the difference in colour, still less for that in the character of
the hair, even if it did for the more infantile type of cranium and
of general physique. It must be remembered that these individuals
referred to live in a zone through which the Tropic of Cancer runs;
consequently they may be exemplifications of the theory sometimes put
forward that every race living in the tropics has its duplicate pigmy
race. Or it may be--and to me this seems more probable--that these few
very small and dissimilar women living among the Taiyal represent the
remainder of a pigmy people, now almost extinct, of whom all the men
have been killed, and of whom but a few of the women still survive.
And as these few (certainly those with whom I came into contact) seem
childless, it is obvious that within the very near future there will
be no representatives remaining--that is, if this last explanation
which I have suggested be the true one. This is one of the many points
in connection with Formosan ethnology which would well repay further

It may be added that the speech of the women referred to--when they can
be induced to speak at all--seems more filled with guttural “clicks”
than is that of the full-blooded Taiyal men and women.


_This woman is suspected of having a strain of pigmy blood. Note
difference of features, and difference in the shape of head and face._]



[48] See Part I, p. 29.

[49] The Taiyal tribe is the same as that which Swinhoe, who spent
a few days among them in 1857, calls the Tylolok (see _Hastings’
Encyclopædia of Religion and Ethics_, vol. vi. p. 85).

[50] Stakes driven into the ground, extending upward to a height of six
feet, or more (see illustration of Yami house).

[51] See Part I, p. 70.

[52] The colour of the skin, the shape of the features, and the
occasionally curly hair of certain members of the Yami suggest that the
people of this tiny island--Botel Tobago--have in them an admixture
of Papuan blood, which modifies the predominant Malay strain. This
admixture is also suggested by certain features of their arts and

[53] During the days of the Chinese government of Formosa when there
was a British consulate at Takao.

[54] See illustrations from snapshots taken by the author, showing how
these very small women keep their heads covered--bound with cloths--as
much as possible, in order to conceal their hair.



Head-hunting and associated Customs--“Mother-right” and Age-grade
Systems--Property Rights--Sex Relations.

The social organization of the Formosan aborigines presents many points
of interest, but the four which most forcibly impress the visitor or
student of aboriginal customs, and which, taken together, constitute a
somewhat unique system, are the following:

  (_a_) _Head-hunting_ and the point of view of the tribes-people
          regarding this custom.

  (_b_) “_Mother-right_” more fully developed than is usual, even
          among primitive people, at the present time.

  (_c_) The _Communal System_--that of holding property in
          common--which exists among several of the tribes.

  (_d_) The _Chastity_ and _Strict Monogamy_ customary among these
          “Naturvölker”; habits which strikingly impress one who goes
          among them after having spent some time in China or Japan,
          or in the Chinese and Japanese towns and villages in the
          “civilized” part of the island.

One, or more, of these customs naturally exists among primitive peoples
in various parts of the world; it is the combination of these, welded
into a well-defined social organization, that makes the latter unique.

That “head-hunting” should be included under the head of “social
organization” may seem perhaps a contradiction in terms--head-hunting
not being exactly a social custom. I think, however, that anyone
who has lived among a head-hunting tribe will realize how closely
this custom is interwoven with the fabric of their whole social
organization. It regulates the social and political standing of the men
of the tribe; it is directly connected with marriage--no head, no wife;
and is reflected in the games, the songs, and the dances of the people.
Moreover head-hunting is regulated by a code as rigid as the code of
“an officer and a gentleman” in so-called civilized society--and is
rather less frequently broken.

Deniker, in speaking of the Dyaks of Borneo (see _The Races of Man_,
p. 251), aptly remarks: “A number of acts regarded as culpable by the
codes of all civilized states are yet tolerated, and even extolled,
in certain particular circumstances; such as the taking of life, for
example, in legitimate defence, in a duel, during war, or as a capital
punishment. Thus, in recalling examples of this kind, we shall be
less severe on a Dyak who cuts off a man’s head solely that he may
carry this trophy to his bride; for if he did otherwise he would be
repulsed by all.” The same charity for which Deniker pleads in judgment
of the Dyak may well be extended to the Formosan aborigine, who never
thus seeks private vengeance, whatever his provocation, on one of his
fellow-tribesmen,[55] private disputes being always laid before the
chief--male or female--of the tribe or before the chief-priestess, or
a convocation of the elderly women of the tribal group. Also when a
Formosan has voluntarily given his word to refrain from head-hunting,
it is said--and my personal observation would tend to confirm
this--that he never breaks it.[56]

The tribes among whom head-hunting still exists are the Taiyal, the
Bunun, and the Paiwan, though among the Bunun and the Paiwan to a
lesser extent at the present time than among the Taiyal. Among all
the other Chin-huan tribes it existed within the memory of the older
generation still living.

Among the Taiyal tribe--the great tribe of the northern part of the
island--one can tell at a glance who has “a head to his credit,” by
the presence, or absence, of the tattoo-mark on the chin. Occasionally
one sees the insignia of the successful head-hunter tattooed on the
chin of young boys. This indicates that these boys are the sons of
famous head-hunters and that their hands have been laid upon heads
decapitated by their fathers; or that they have carried these heads
in net-bags upon their backs. This, by tribal code, entitles them to
the successful head-hunter’s tattoo-mark. Incidentally, it must be
understood that while the Taiyal are--largely because of their peculiar
form of tattooing--usually regarded as a single tribe, they do not so
regard themselves, but are composed of a number of sub-groups (it is
said twenty-six), who regard themselves as separate units; and who
consequently go on head-hunting expeditions against each other.

When a boy attains maturity he is supposed to celebrate this by going
on his first head-hunting expedition.[57] Usually several boys of about
the same age go together on their first expedition, accompanied by
older and more experienced warriors of the same group, or sub-tribe.
Before going on such an expedition an omen is always consulted--usually
a bird-omen, of which I shall speak more fully under the head of
Religion--and it depends upon the favourable or unfavourable indication
of the omen as to whether the expedition is undertaken forthwith or is
postponed. The Taiyal consider it more auspicious to set forth on such
an expedition with an odd number of men. They seem to think the chances
will be greater of securing a head, which will count as a man, and
thus make up the “lucky even number” with which they hope to return to
the village.

During the absence of the warriors on one of these expeditions, the
women of the group will abstain from weaving, or even from handling
the material--a sort of coarse native hemp--which customarily they
weave into clothing. Except for the studious tending of the fires in
their respective huts--for if these were allowed to go out, it would
be considered a most evil omen--they do little until they hear in the
distance the cries which herald the return of the warriors. Then,
depending upon whether the cries denote victory or defeat, the women
prepare either for a festival or for a time of lamentation.

If the warriors have been successful--that is, if they have returned
with one or more heads of slain enemies--a great feast is prepared,
and partaken of by the men and women together. In this respect
Formosan feasts differ from the victorious warrior-feasts of many
other primitive communities, at which only the men are the revellers.
This difference also distinguishes the dance that follows the feast,
in which both men and women participate, the Formosan aborigines
forming an exception to the rule laid down by Deniker that Malay men
do not dance. As in feasting and dancing, so do the women also take
part in the drinking of wine--made by themselves from millet--and in
the smoking of tobacco. Among the Taiyal, as among most of the other
tribes, both men and women smoke bamboo pipes--more of the size and
shape of those smoked by Europeans than are the tiny pipes smoked by
the Chinese and Japanese. These are, however, for some reason which
they could not, or would not, explain, often held upside-down while
being smoked, the tobacco being very tightly “jammed” into the bowl to
prevent its falling out.

Among the coast Ami, only the men smoke pipes, the bowls of which are
often decorated with bits of metal--bartered from the Chinese--in
imitation of the features of a human face. The women of this tribe
smoke huge cigars.

How tobacco was introduced into Formosa, where now it grows practically
wild--the leaves being gathered by the women--is a mystery. Probably,
however, it was first brought to the island by the Dutch; and, once
having been planted in a soil favouring its growth, it continued to
flourish and to spread, in spite of what in Europe and in America
would be called lack of cultivation. Now smoking is universal among
all the tribes of the main island of Formosa. Among the Yami alone--of
Botel Tobago--it is, up to the present time, unknown; as is also,
apparently, the drinking of any intoxicating liquor. Another thing that
differentiates these gentle people from their neighbours of the main
island, just to the north of them, is the fact that none of them are



To return for a moment to the present chief head-hunting tribe, the
Taiyal. At the time of feasting and dancing in celebration of a
victory, the head of the victim is placed on the “skull-shelf” of
the village--being often the last addition to a pile of others--and
food and millet-wine are placed in front of it, food being sometimes
inserted into its mouth. The chief (often a woman), or high-priestess,
of the village offers to the last-decapitated head an invitation to the
following effect: “O warrior, you are welcome to our village and to our
feast! Eat and drink, and ask your brothers to come and join you, and
to eat and drink with us also.”

This invocation is supposed to have a magical effect in bringing about
other victories, and thus adding more heads to the skull-shelf (see

The knives with which the heads of enemies have been cut off are held
in great reverence by all the tribes. Among one tribe--the Paiwan--it
is believed that the spirits of ancestors dwell in certain knives,
which have been in the possession of the tribe for several generations.

Among the Paiwan, and also the Bunun, the successful warrior is
denoted, not as among the Taiyal by certain tattoo-marking, but by
the wearing of a certain kind of cap which is made by the women of
the tribe. The Paiwan, whose domain formerly extended all the way to
Cape Garanbi, had--and have still in certain quarters--the reputation
of being cannibals, as well as head-hunters. A statement to this
effect is made in the _Encyclopædia Britannica_ (see article under
the head of “Formosa”). This, however, I believe to be a mistake; as
did also George Taylor, for many years light-house keeper at South
Cape (Garanbi), under the Chinese regime; one who probably knew the
aborigines more intimately than any white man since the time of the
Dutch occupation. The superficial observer, seeing a pile of skulls
in a native village--often several skulls over, or at the side of,
the doorway of a chief’s house[58]--is apt hastily to assume that
the villagers must necessarily be cannibals. But, while head-hunters
certainly, I do not believe that the Formosan aborigines are, or ever
have been, cannibals.

Among the Paiwan a tradition exists that in “days of old,” when their
territory extended to the sea-coast, “great boats” often came near
their coast, from which men landed; and that these men were in the
habit of capturing and carrying away numbers of the Paiwan people.
Whether these “great boats” were Chinese junks or Spanish ships from
the Philippines, I do not know. At any rate, among the Paiwan, the
killing of strangers--except those with fair hair and blue eyes (which
would indicate that the kidnapping invaders of the past were not
Dutch)--is alleged to be an act of self-defence, to prevent their
being carried away, “as their fathers were.” On what foundation of
truth--if any--this tradition is built, I do not know.

In this connection also the Paiwan claim that once, in those olden
days, when strangers were landing from one of the large ships, they
themselves (the Paiwan) took refuge in a “secret place among the
hills,” but they were betrayed by the crowing of a cock, which revealed
their hiding-place to the strangers, who killed many of them and
carried others away by force to their ship. This they give as their
reason for never eating chicken.

But as a neighbouring tribe, the Ami, also never eat chicken, and
assign for their abstention an entirely different reason--viz. that
“souls of good and gentle people dwell in chickens”--it is not
possible to give too great credence to Paiwan tradition, or to their
own explanation of their custom; this being one of the many instances
where various “reasons” are given by a primitive people in attempted
explanation of a long-established custom.

In passing, it may be mentioned that it is only among the coast tribes,
such as Paiwan, Piyuma, and Ami, that the raising of chickens, for the
sake of their eggs, has been introduced--apparently by the Chinese.

Among the Paiwan, as among the other aboriginal tribes, including the
Taiyal of the north, there exists the custom of two great festivals
during the year, one at seed-time, the other at harvest-time. During
these twice-yearly festivals there is much feasting, much dancing, and,
unfortunately, much drinking of millet wine. That which distinguishes
the Paiwan festivities, however, from those of the other tribes is
that once every five years on these festive days the Paiwan play a
game called Mavayaiya. This game consists of a contest between several
warriors, each trying to impale on a bamboo lance a bundle--now made of
bark--which is tossed into the air, the one who catches it on the point
of his lance being considered the victor. Tradition among them asserts
that in olden days it was a human head--that of a slain enemy--which
was thus tossed about, a mere bundle of bark being considered a poor
substitute. But Japanese laws against head-hunting are strict, for
Japanese themselves have suffered from these expeditions--punitive
usually--and knives, even sacred ones, are no match against modern
rifles, or against bombs thrown from aeroplanes.

Similarly with the neighbouring tribe--now a small one--that of the
Piyuma. On a festival day, held annually, a monkey--one of those with
which the woods of Formosa are filled--is tied before the bachelor
dormitory, and killed by the young men with arrows. After it is killed
the village chief throws a little native wine three times towards the
sky, and three times on the ground, near the body of the dead monkey.
Singing, dancing, and feasting follow. The old people of the Piyuma
tribe explain that in the “good days of old,” when their tribe was a
large and powerful one, a prisoner, captured from some other tribe, was
always sacrificed on these festal occasions, but now they--like the
Paiwan, with their Mavayaiya--have to be satisfied with an inferior
substitute. It seems that one of the reasons why a monkey is considered
so particularly inferior a substitute for a man is that the former can
at its death bear no message to the spirits of the ancestors of those
who slay it. In the good old days every arrow that was shot into the
body of the man bore with it a message to the spirit of the ancestor
of the man who shot the arrow. Apparently it was regarded as an
obligation, one that could not be evaded, on the part of the victim, to
deliver this message--rather these many messages--immediately upon his
arrival in the spirit-world.

Even among the Paiwan head-hunting is on the decline, being much less
practised by this tribe to-day than among the Taiyal. Many of the
honours which were formerly paid to the successful Paiwan head-hunter
are now paid to the successful hunter of game, and the latter is now
even wearing the cap of distinction at one time reserved exclusively
for the former.

In game hunting the aborigines use either the old guns, obtained from
the Chinese by barter, long ago, or--in the cases where these guns
have been confiscated by the Japanese on the ground of their owners
being “dangerous savages”--they have returned to the use of bows and
arrows such as were used by their ancestors before guns were introduced
among them. The bow is simple, usually made of wood of the catalpa
tree, the bow-string being made of the tough “China grass,” which grows
on the island. The arrow is made of bamboo, the arrow-head now being
of iron, this being pounded out from any piece of scrap-iron which the
tribes-people can obtain by barter.

An interesting feature of Formosan archery is that the arrows are not
feathered, as Japanese arrows are; also that in shooting the arrow,
this is always placed on the left side of the bow, whereas it is placed
on the right side by both Chinese and Japanese.

So much for the rather unpleasant subject of head-hunting, and those
customs which are associated with, or have sprung from, it.


Turning now to the subject of the general political and social
organization of the tribes, taken collectively, perhaps the most
striking feature may be summed up in the remark of the Japanese
policeman who escorted me on one of my first trips among the Taiyal:
“Their head-man is a woman”--which rather “Irish” remark holds true
not only as regards the Taiyal, but as regards other tribes as well.
One often sees the queen, or woman-chief, of a tribal group borne on
the shoulders of her subjects, as she goes about the village, so that
her sacred feet may not touch the ground. So closely, however, are
“Church and State” bound together--that is, so frequently are queen and
chief-priestess one--that descriptions of certain customs connected
with the “woman head-man” must be postponed until later, when these
will be dealt with under the respective heads of RELIGION and MARRIAGE.

Among the Paiwan--also the small neighbouring tribe of the
Piyuma--chieftainship seems to be hereditary, usually descending from
mother to daughter, although over some groups male chiefs rule; this
apparently being usual when the old queen has died without leaving a
daughter. Such instances are not infrequent among a people with whom
small families are usual. In this connection, reference may be made
to a statement which has been somewhat widely disseminated regarding
the children of the aboriginal women of Formosa. It has been said that
these women never allow their children to live until they themselves
are thirty-seven years of age.[59] This curious statement was made
by one of the old Dutch chroniclers of the seventeenth century, and
has been repeated, doubtless in good faith--on the strength of the
Dutch records--by more modern writers. Of this custom, however, I saw
no trace in any of the tribes during my residence among them. On the
contrary, I saw many young mothers--of various tribes--nursing and
tending their babies with greatest devotion. It is true that with them,
as with many primitive peoples, twins are considered “unlucky,” and
the weaker of the pair is usually killed at birth. Also, illegitimate
children are not allowed to live, Formosan standards--those of the
aborigines--being curiously rigorous on the latter point. Except in
these instances, I saw nothing that would suggest infanticide among
any of the tribes, and heard nothing of it. Both men and women seem
particularly devoted to their offspring. But, due apparently to the
present hard conditions of life among the aborigines, families are
small and comparatively few of the children born grow to maturity.

To revert for a moment to the customs of the Paiwan and Piyuma tribes.
A rather strict age-grade, or system of rank regulated according to
age, seems to exist among them. The older the man or woman, the more is
he, or she, held in reverence.

These tribes--and also the Tsuou, Yami, and Ami tribes--have the
“bachelor-house”[60] system. That is, when a young man reaches the
age of fifteen or sixteen, he is obliged to leave the home of his
parents, and sleep in the bachelor-house until he is married. This
bachelor-house serves as a sort of combination dormitory, military
barracks, and club house. So strictly is the age-grade system observed
among the Piyuma that there are two club-houses: one for boys from
twelve to fifteen years of age; the other for young men over fifteen.
In both bachelor-houses--that of the boys and that of the young
men--the strictest discipline prevails. A certain number of youths are
assigned the duty of keeping the fire supplied with wood (if the fire
were allowed to go out it would be considered an omen of disaster to
the tribe); others that of bringing water--which is usually carried in
great bamboo tubes, borne on the shoulders. Other duties are equably
apportioned. Each age-grade is supposed to obey without question the
orders of those of superior age.

The reasons assigned for having the young men live apart in
bachelor-houses are as various as are the reasons assigned for the
other customs previously referred to. The two explanations most
frequently given are: (_a_) that living apart makes the young men more
courageous and intrepid, especially as the bachelor-houses are usually
decorated with skulls of slain enemies of the tribe, or tribal group;
and (_b_) that it makes for chastity, and also for conserving the
delicacy of mind of the young women and children; that is, that the
latter may be surrounded only by staid, elderly people, and thus hear
no conversation unfitted for their ears.

These bachelor-houses are usually, though not invariably, built on
“piles” similar to Indonesian buildings, often ten feet above ground.
Entrance to these houses is by means of bamboo poles, up which the
young men must climb.

One of the customs of the young bachelors among the Paiwan tribe
recalls a custom of the Hawaians and other Polynesians--that is, on
festal occasions they wear about their necks long garlands of flowers.

Among the Ami a more complicated age-grade system prevails. In some
groups of this tribe there are ten age-grades; in others, twelve. Men
and women of the same age are accorded equal privileges, greatest
deference always being paid to the oldest. In some respects, the Ami
may be considered the most democratic of the tribes, seniority of each
in turn--rather than hereditary rank--conferring power and prestige.

With the Taiyal, each sub-group has its own chief, or “chieftainess.”
With this people, however, the office seems to be more elective
than hereditary, the choice usually falling upon a priestess whose
ministrations have been especially successful either in driving away
the rain-devil (to be spoken of more fully under the head of RELIGION)
or in interpreting omens which have led to successful head-hunting

The granaries, in which the year’s harvest of millet is stored, are
also under the charge of women, who deal out daily supplies of millet
to the women of the different families comprising the tribal group. It
seems tabu for men, certainly of the Taiyal tribe, to approach very
near these millet store-houses.

To just what cause the women of the Formosan aborigines owe their
ascendancy it would be difficult to say. As a people the aborigines
have reached the stage of “hoe-culture”--a stage which Deniker and some
other anthropologists sharply differentiate from “true agriculture”
(i.e. with the plough), and which usually precedes the pastoral stage,
whereas “true agriculture” follows it. Certainly this precedence of
order of culture is true of the Formosans (the aborigines). They
have no flocks or herds, no beasts of draught or of burden; they are
strictly in the “hunting stage” of civilization as regards the men;
yet the women scratch the ground with a short-handled primitive hoe,
and thus raise millet and sweet potatoes, besides digging away the
rankest of the weeds from about the roots of the tobacco plants.
Whether being concerned with the raising and storing of the staples of
life--millet and sweet potatoes--and with the gathering and curing of
the tobacco-leaves and the making of wine--life’s luxuries--has given
women the ascendancy which they undoubtedly possess is a question.
Personally I should be inclined to think it had (on the principle that
he who holds the purse-strings--or the equivalent--holds the power).
But Lowie, the American anthropologist, with some force of argument,
warns of the danger of too hastily assuming that an agricultural
stage (“hoe-culture” or other) of civilization necessarily implies
“matri-potestas,” pointing out the fact that among the Andaman
Islanders, who are in the most primitive “hunting stage,” women hold
a far higher position than among the present agricultural peoples of
India and of many other parts of the world.[61]

It may be that the “equal rights” (or superior rights) position of the
aboriginal women of Formosa is due to causes partly racial, for in
Guam, an island of the Marianne, or Ladrone, group also inhabited by a
people evidently of Indonesian extraction, the same state of affairs
seems to exist as regards the relation of the sexes. In Formosa this
certainly is not due to contact with a superior race, for among both
Chinese and Japanese--as is generally known--the woman is regarded as
being distinctly inferior to him who is with these races very literally
“lord and master.”

To whatever cause may be ascribed the dominance of the aboriginal
Formosan woman in both political and religious life--closely
interwoven as these are--the result seems to make for the happiness
of all concerned, within the tribal group. Disputes within the group
are of infrequent occurrence. When these do occur, they are almost
always settled either by the queen, or chief-priestess alone, or by a
“palaver” or meeting of remonstrance on the part of all the elderly
women of the group. Theft within the group seems unknown among any
of the tribes; this also applies to those who are accepted as guests
of the tribal group. Guests are regarded by them as friends, and the
fidelity in friendship of these “Naturvölker” is touching; as is also
their point of view regarding the sacredness of a promise. This is
especially true of the Taiyal and the other mountain tribes who have
come but little into contact with either Chinese or Japanese.

Regarding property rights among the Chin-huan (primitive or “green”
savages): all the members of each tribal group hold in common both
hunting-grounds and the grounds used for the cultivation of millet,
sweet potatoes, and tobacco--and more recently rice, since this has
been introduced by the Japanese. No dispute in connection with communal
property ever seems to arise. It is understood that each man who is
physically able will take part in the hunting, and thus contribute
his share toward keeping the group supplied with meat. Equally it
is understood that every woman not ill or aged will take part in
the cultivation, harvesting, and storing of food-stuffs. Millet and
sweet potatoes are kept in common store-houses, and--as explained in
another connection--these are given out by women who have charge of the
store-houses to the woman-head of each family, as she may have need
of them. The scheme of “from each according to his ability, to each
according to his need” seems to work successfully and without friction
among these people.

The only commodity, apparently, which among them is used as currency
is salt; and this has been recently introduced by the Japanese. Among
those who have never come into contact with the Japanese--that is,
those in the inaccessible mountain regions--it is said still to be

As regards the system of counting in vogue among them, in connection
with barter and otherwise, the _Chin-huan_--excluding those of the
Ami and Paiwan tribes, who live on or near the coast, and who have
been for some time in contact with the Chinese and Japanese--still
count by “hands”: that is, one hand equals five; two hands, ten, etc.
Or, occasionally, by a “man”; the latter, one learns in time, being
equivalent to twenty, that is, the number of fingers and toes, taken
together, belonging to each man.

A striking feature of the social organization of the aborigines is
their strict monogamy and their marital fidelity for the duration
of the marriage.[63] This custom is in marked contrast with that of
many other primitive races--Africans, Australians, Mongols, American
Indians: also with that of other Malay and Oceanic peoples, and most
of all with that of the Chinese and Japanese. One of the latter, a
government official in Formosa, with whom I was thrown into contact
in connection with my expeditions into savage territory, pitied the
_seban_ (savages) for not having a social organization sufficiently
highly developed to have room within it for a _geisha_ system (that of
professional singing and dancing girls) and that of a _yoshiwara_, the
latter term being too well known in connection with Japanese cities to
make explanation or definition necessary.

Among the “green savages”--those who have not come into close touch
with the Chinese and Japanese--adultery is punished with death, an
unfaithful husband suffering the same punishment as an unfaithful wife;
and prostitution is unknown.


[55] That is, of the same tribal group, which constitutes a social unit.

[56] This, of course, does not apply to a forced oath, extorted through

[57] This constitutes part of the puberty initiation ceremonies.

[58] See illustration of Paiwan skull-shelf, at the side of doorway of

[59] See _Formosa under the Dutch_, by Campbell.

[60] See illustration of bachelor-house facing page 97.

[61] See _Primitive Society_, by Robert H. Lowie, Ph.D., Assistant
Curator in Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History.

[62] Some groups of the Taiyal use pounded ginger-root, instead of
salt, for flavouring their food.

[63] This duration varies among the different tribes, as will be
explained in the chapter dealing with MARRIAGE CUSTOMS.



Deities of the Ami and Beliefs of this Tribe regarding Heaven and
Hell--Beliefs and Ceremonials of the other Tribes of the South--Descent
from Bamboo; Carved Representations of Glorified Ancestors and of
Serpents; Moon Worship; Sacred Tree, Orchid, and Grass--The Kindling of
the Sacred Fire by the Bunun and Taiyal Tribes--Beliefs and Ceremonials
of the Taiyal--Rain Dances; Bird Omens; _Ottofu_; Princess and Dog
Ancestors--Yami Celebrations in Honour of the Sea-god.

All those who have come personally into contact with a primitive
Malay people will, I think, agree that belief in the “All Father”
idea (such as certain anthropologists suggest is “natural to the
child-mind of primitive man”) does not hold true of this particular
branch of primitive man. Certainly as far as the Formosan aborigines
are concerned, there seems no trace of anything of the sort, except
possibly among the Ami, of the east coast; and such hazy idea of
a Supreme Being as they may perhaps be considered to hold seems
probably derived from teachings of the Dutch missionaries given to
their ancestors. When questioned at all closely as to their religious
belief, they speak of several deities. These are usually in pairs--male
and female--as for example Kakring and Kalapiat. These deities seem
concerned with the thunderstorms which are frequent on the east coast;
these storms being due, according to Ami belief, to the quarrels
between the god, Kakring, and his wife, Kalapiat; Kakring causing the
thunder by stamping and by throwing about the pots (the latter being
the most prized possession of every Ami house-wife), and Kalapiat
bringing about lightning by completely disrobing herself in her
anger--this being a method of showing displeasure frequently adopted by
Ami women. Earthquakes--frequent in Formosa--are supposed to be caused
by a spirit in the shape of a great pig scratching himself against a
pole, which extends from earth to heaven. Sun, moon, and stars were
created by Dgagha and Bartsing--god and goddess, respectively. The
earth the Ami believe to be flat; the sun goes under it at night, the
moon and stars under it during the day.

The Ami seem more democratic in religion, as well as in politics, than
the mountain tribes; that is, the theocracy of the priestesses seems
less strong. Priestesses, however, exist among them, and in time of
illness or danger they are asked to intercede with the various deities.
Intercession takes the form of a sort of chanting prayer, growing
louder and wilder as it continues, accompanied by the throwing into the
air of small coloured pebbles (now sometimes glass beads bartered from
Chinese and Japanese), together with small pieces of the flesh of wild
pig--this apparently as an offering to the deities.

When a tribal group among the Ami is in serious distress or danger,
or faced by the necessity of a decision of importance, the elders of
the group[64]--or village, if only one village is affected--usually
repair to a cave, or to a place near a high cliff--wherever an echo
may be heard--accompanied by several priestesses. The latter dance and
chant themselves into a state of frenzy, until they fall exhausted in
a swoon, real or simulated. When they return to consciousness, which
is sometimes not until next day, they say that the spirits which “sang
back” at them from cliff or cave during the chanting have told them
what measures the people must take in order to meet the emergency in
question. This can be communicated only to the elders; and only the
elders are allowed to watch this especially sacred dance. For any of
the younger people to do so would be considered a heinous sin.

The red stones, or beads, used by the priestesses in their incantations
are also sometimes used by the older warriors and huntsmen. An old
hunter, just before starting into the mountains in search of game, will
put a red pebble into a freshly opened betel-nut, lay this in the palm
of his hand and wave it before his face, palm upward, toward the sky.
This is supposed to bring him good luck in the chase. The same ceremony
is said to have been performed in the olden days, just before starting
on a head-hunting expedition.

The ideas of the Ami regarding heaven and hell also suggest that these
may be the vestiges of missionary teachings once given by the Dutch
(the present-day missionaries in Formosa confine their attention to
the Chinese-Formosans as before explained). Good men and women, the
Ami believe, go to “heaven,” and bad ones to “hell.” Heaven they
believe to be situated “somewhere in the north”; hell “somewhere in the
south.” One wonders if this belief as regards direction represents a
tribal recollection of their former home--perhaps of a massacre, which
caused the emigration of those remaining; perhaps of hunger, thirst,
and terror on the voyage between the “land to the south” and Formosa.
At any rate, their tradition is that their ancestors drifted to the
coast, which is now their home, in a “long boat.” The very spot of
their debarkation is pointed out--a place near Pinan.[65] Once a year
a commemoration festival is held at this spot, when food and drink
are offered to the spirits of their ancestors. Their own ancestors of
course have gone to heaven, where they themselves will go after death;
equally of course the people of the other tribes, especially those with
whom they happen to be at enmity, will go to hell (savage and civilized
psychology being on some points strangely alike). The Ami say, however,
that hell cannot be any worse than the earth; otherwise spirits would
not remain there.

With the Piyuma--the small east coast tribe living just south of the
Ami--the most sacred spot is a bamboo-grove a few miles inland called
by themselves “Arapani.” Here, according to Piyuma tradition, was
planted the staff of a god, which grew into a bamboo. From different
joints of this bamboo sprang the first man and the first woman,
ancestors of the Piyuma people. Markings on a stone near Arapani
are said to be footprints of this first couple. Hence this stone is
considered most sacred.

The tradition of being descended from ancestors sprung from a bamboo
is held by other tribes than the Piyuma; in fact, it is held by
practically all the Formosan tribes; also by the Tagalog tribe of the
Philippines. A similar tradition is referred to in the Japanese tale of
Taketori-Monogatari--now, I believe, translated into English.[66]

[Illustration: FAMILY OF THE AMI TRIBE.]


The Paiwan--the tribe south of the Piyuma--and indeed the southernmost
of the main island--is the only aboriginal tribe that has anything
approaching what missionaries would call “idols”--that is, carved
representations of deity. Before the house of the chief of every
tribal group among the Paiwan stands an upright block of slate on
which is carved a figure supposed to be human, this figure often being
surrounded by markings representing serpents.[67] Both human and
serpentine figures are carved in the slate by means of sharpened flint,
or other stone harder than slate. As the Paiwan also build their houses
of slate (by a method to be spoken of more in detail under the head of
ARTS AND CRAFTS), representations of human heads and snakes are carved
always on the lintel over the doorway of the chief; and often on that
over the doorways of successful warriors and huntsmen.[68]

Some anthropologists might see in this frequent representation of the
snake evidence of snake totemism on the part of the Paiwan. I do not,
however, think this is the case. The Paiwan venerate the snake as being
the most dangerous of living creatures (in the tropical jungles of
Formosa there are naturally many deadly species); but this veneration
is more in the nature of theriolatry than totemism. They seem to think
that by having constantly before their eyes representations of this the
most dreaded of all the creatures of the jungle, they will, through a
sort of sympathetic magic, be inspired with the bravery, as they regard
it--if not the wisdom--of the serpent.

As for the figure in human semblance carved on the slate tablet, or
monument, in front of the chief’s house, I am inclined to think this
represents rather a glorified ancestor--in the sense in which the
Japanese often use the word “Kami” ([Illustration])--rather than
“god” in the Western sense of that word. Certainly the Paiwan--like
the other aboriginal tribes--pay greater reverence to the spirits of
ancestors than to any deity. Besides the ancestral spirits believed to
inhabit the ancient swords or knives, previously referred to,[69] there
are other spirits whose dwelling-place they believe to be the forest
or jungle. All these are worshipped twice a year, at millet planting
time and at harvest, when food and drink are offered to the spirits
of the dead, at the same time that feasting and drinking are going on
among the living; and once every five years at the time of the harvest
festival occurs the great celebration, when there is played the game of
_Mavay aiya_,[70] already described.

Adjoining the territory of the Paiwan, on the north-west,[71] is
that of the Tsarisen. Among the latter there is a tradition that
their ancestors came down from the moon, bringing with them twelve
jars of baked clay, or earthenware. At the home of the chief of the
principal tribal group of this now small people are kept two or three
old baked-clay pots, or jars, believed by the tribes-people to be of
lunar origin--a remnant of the original twelve brought down by their
ancestors. These of course are never used, but are regarded by them as
being most sacred, only the chief and the priestesses being allowed to
touch, or even to go near, them. By the side of the old jars is kept a
large, circular white stone, also carefully cherished, believed to be
in some way connected with the moon; but whether it was brought from
the moon, or whether its appearance suggests the full moon, is not

It is before these treasures that the priestesses dance, and also
before them that at the semi-annual festivals they place offerings
of millet and millet wine, also sometimes of fruit and other food,
chanting as they do so. This chanting is supposed to invoke the spirits
of the moon-ancestors, who come down during the ceremony and bestow
blessings upon the tribe. In other groups within the Tsarisen tribe,
where there are no sacred jars or stones, the priestesses arrange the
food-offerings in little piles close together, forming a circle: this
to simulate the full moon. To step within the charmed circle would be
sacrilege unspeakable; an offence so serious that only the death of the
offender, the tribes-people say, would remove from the tribe the blight
that otherwise would fall upon it. It is not on record that any member
of the tribe has ever had the temerity to attempt this; and no member
of any other tribe is allowed to come near the sacred spot.

North of the Tsarisen are the Tsuou and Bunun tribes; the former a very
small tribe, numbering now less than two thousand, the latter numbering
about fifteen thousand, roughly speaking.

The religious belief--or rather religious ceremonial, for with
primitive people ritual apparently counts for more than dogma--of the
Tsuou is closely bound up with what is sometimes called “tree-worship.”
That is, within, or very near, each village there is a certain tree
which is regarded as holy; and once a year--at harvest-time--millet
wine is sprinkled near the roots of the tree, and singing, dancing, and
feasting carried on under its branches. I do not consider, however,
that this constitutes true tree-worship, nor do I think that the
Tsuou have a “tree-cult.” Rather, their ceremonial is connected with
ancestor-worship, for they seem to think that the spirits of their
ancestors dwell in the sacred trees, and it is to these spirits that
wine is offered at harvest time, and invocations made.

The Tsuou also regard a certain orchid which grows in that part of
the island as being of peculiar sanctity. They transplant it from the
forest where it grows to the ground at the root of the sacred tree
of each village. During the dry season the priestesses water it, and
always they tend it with scrupulous care. This custom also is obviously
connected with the reverence in which the tribes-people hold their
ancestors, for the latter, they believe, wore this orchid when they
went to battle with neighbouring tribes, and through its magic efficacy
achieved victory. The Tsuou seem to think that in some way this orchid
will eventually restore--or be instrumental in restoring--the former
dominance and prosperity of their tribe.

The Bunun, unlike their neighbours, the Tsuou, regard a certain kind
of tall grass, which grows in the mountainous region in which they
live, as being of even greater sanctity than trees. Twice a year--at
seed-time and at harvest-time--great bundles of this green grass are
brought into the houses, millet wine is sprinkled before the doorway
of each house, and invocations to ancestors are sung and danced in the
open, between the houses of each village.

Among the Bunun, as also among all the tribal groups of the great
Taiyal “nation,”[72] there exists the peculiar custom of starting a
“new fire” at the time of the sowing and harvest festivals. This “new
fire” is ceremonially kindled. At other times, should the fire go out
(though this is considered a thing of evil omen), or should hunters,
away from home, wish to start a fire, flint-and-steel percussion is
used--this method apparently having been learned from the Dutch of the
seventeenth century, or possibly from the Chinese. On the ceremonial
days of the year, however--the days when offerings are made to
ancestors--fire must be kindled by a method in use in the “days of the

Among the Bunun this takes the form of the “fire-drill”--the twirling
of a pointed stick of hard wood of some sort in a depression made in a
stick of softer wood, until the friction heats the flakes of soft wood,
thus “eaten away,” to a point where flame can be produced by placing
against this hot wood-dust bits of very dry grass or leaves, and
blowing upon it. In order thus to produce fire, the chief of the tribal
group--among the Bunun usually a man--shuts himself up alone in his
hut, which for the time being it is tabu for his subjects to approach,
twirling the fire-drill and blowing upon the wood-dust and tinder,
until the sacred fire is “born.” From the flame thus kindled is lighted
first his own domestic fire; then those of all the other members of
the village or group, who, after the actual kindling of the flame, are
invited into the hut of the chief.

The Taiyal method of lighting the sacred fire is a little different
from that employed by the Bunun. Among the Taiyal the duty of producing
the ceremonial “new fire” devolves upon the priestesses. These
“vestals of the flame,” however, are not virgins. Only middle-aged
and elderly women are priestesses; and all those whom I saw--or of
whom I heard when among the Taiyal--were widows, and usually the
mothers of children. What becomes of the Taiyal spinsters one wonders;
there seem to be none. Yet they are a strictly monogamous people; and
considering how frequently the men of this tribe lose their heads--in
a very literal sense--a disproportion of women, consequently a
number of unmarried ones, might be expected. But this does not seem
to be the case, judging both from my own observation and also from
the reply to questions put to the Japanese _Aiyu_ (military police)
stationed at various points among the Taiyal. It may be that those
anthropologists[73] are right who hold that the so-called hardships
of savage life--frequent insufficiency of food, necessity of hard
physical toil on the part of the women, and similar conditions--result
in a greater number of male infants being born than is the case under
conditions of civilization.[74] (A not impossible hypothesis: since
many stock-breeders hold that the relative leanness or fatness of
cattle has a decided effect upon the sex of the offspring--“lean
years,” i.e. those of scarcity of food, more males; “fat years,” those
of plenty, more females. This fact--if it be a fact--may also be the
basis of the popular idea that shortly after wars a greater number of
males among the _genus homo_ are born than at other times.)

However, to return to our muttons--that of sacred fire, as produced
by the Taiyal. On the ceremonial day when the “new fire” is to be
kindled, the chief priestess of each group carefully unsheathes
her “fire machine” from the wrapping of bamboo leaves in which it
is kept swathed during the greater part of the year. This “fire
machine” consists of two pieces of bamboo. One piece, used as a saw,
is sharpened on one edge to a knife-like keenness; the other edge is
left blunt. This blunt edge is held in the hand of the officiating
priestess. In a shallow groove cut in the other piece of bamboo the
priestess inserts the sharp edge of the short, wedge-shaped, bamboo
saw. To and fro she draws it, chanting as she does so. Usually she
is seated in the open, before the door of her hut, her congregation
of apparently awestruck subjects being seated in a semicircle, at a
respectful distance from her. Gradually the bamboo saw “eats” down
through the other piece of bamboo across which it is being drawn. The
sawdust resulting is as hot as that which is produced by means of the
fire stick, or “drill,” already described, and by applying to this
dust tinder--very dry grass, usually--and by blowing upon it, flame is
produced. When the tinder actually lights, the priestess gives a cry of
exultation, which is echoed by the waiting people; then feasting and
dancing begin.

This kindling of the sacred fire by the Taiyal priestesses occurs at
the time of the celebrations in honour of the spirits of the ancestors
of this tribe. These celebrations take place on the night of the
full moon at seed-time and at harvest-time. The day before “full-moon
night,” on these semi-annual occasions, the people hang balls of
boiled millet, usually wrapped in banana leaves, from the branches of
trees, in or near their respective villages. These are to feed the
ancestral spirits, which are supposed to descend through the air that
night, from the high mountain on which they usually reside, into the
trees at the moment of the kindling of the ceremonial fire. This fire
lights the spirits on their way to the trees, from which the food is
suspended--though moonlight also, it would seem, is necessary, since
these “spirit-feeding” celebrations among the Taiyal occur always at
full-moon time.

In this connection I was much touched on one harvest-time occasion,
when among the Taiyal, at being presented--by a grizzled warrior,
tattooed with the successful head-hunter’s mark--with a mass of boiled
millet carefully wrapped in a large banana leaf. This, he explained,
was because he regarded me as a reincarnation of one of the Dutch
“spiritual protectors” of his ancestors.

Reverence for ancestors constitutes almost the whole of Taiyal
religion. None of the people of this tribe--or “nation”--seem to hold
a belief in creators of the universe, such as is held by the Ami. The
only deity--other than deified ancestors--whom the Taiyal apparently
take into account is the rain-god, or rather, rain-devil. He, however,
is a being very much to be taken into account in a country like that
in which the Taiyal live--the mountainous part of the island--where
torrential downpours of such violence sometimes occur during the rainy
season that the bamboo and grass huts of the people are washed away.
The Taiyal are not a people who cringe for mercy at the feet of deity
or devil, any more than at those of Chinese or Japanese. Therefore,
instead of prayers and offerings to propitiate the wrath or evil temper
of the rain-devil, who is supposed to be responsible for the downpour,
the chief priestess and assistant priestesses of the tribal group
that is being inundated gather together, with long knives in their
hands--these of the sort that are used by the men in head-hunting--and
begin to dance and gesticulate. The dancing becomes wilder and more
frenzied as it goes on, the gesticulations with the knives--thrusting
and slashing at imaginary figures--more violent; the priestesses cry
or chant in a threatening manner, while the people, both men and
women, standing about, howl and wail. Often the priestesses foam at
the mouth in their excitement, their eyes look as if they would start
from their heads, and this knife-dance usually ends with their falling
exhausted in a swoon, throwing their knives from them as they fall. At
this climax the people shout with joy, declaring that the rain-devil
has been cut to pieces; or, sometimes, that because he has been cut
with the knives of the priestesses, he has fled away and been drowned
in one of the ponds that he has been responsible for creating--being
thus destroyed in the “pit which he had digged for himself.” Whenever
the rain ceases--as in course of time it inevitably must--this is
attributed to the warfare which the priestesses have waged against the

After having witnessed the almost maniacal madness of some of these
sacred dances and ceremonies of exorcism on the part of aboriginal
Formosan priestesses, one comes to the conclusion that the so-called
“arctic madness,” of which some anthropologists speak (in connection
with dances and other religious rites of _shamans_ and medicine-men
of the North) is not peculiar to Hyperborean peoples, but is
characteristic of all Mongol and Malay races, when under stress of
religious fervour or other strong excitement. The same habit of almost
hypnotic imitation, one of another, when under stress of terror or
excitement that is said, by those who have been among them, to be
common to sub-arctic peoples, also characterizes the Malay aborigines
of Formosa, this being perhaps particularly noticeable among the Taiyal

All groups of the Taiyal hold sacred the small bird to which reference
has already been made in connection with head-hunting customs--whose
cry is regarded as an omen of good or evil, according to the note,
and followed accordingly. The flight of this bird is also noted
when starting on either a hunting expedition or on one of warfare
(head-hunting). The warriors or hunters will stop on the spot at which
the bird is seen to alight, and there lie in wait for either enemy or
game, according to the nature of the expedition. This bird cannot,
I think, in spite of the reverence in which it is held, be regarded
as the totem of the Taiyal people. Rather, the tribes-people seem to
regard it as the spokesman of some ancestor--one who was in his day a
famous warrior, and who thus, through the medium of the bird, continues
to guide his descendants, and all members of the tribal group to which
during his lifetime he had belonged. Sometimes it is the spirit of a
priestess which is supposed thus to continue to guide and guard her

The Taiyal word for spirit, or ghost--often used in the sense in which
the Christian would use guardian angel--is _Ottofu_. This seems to
correspond with the _Atua_ of the Polynesians. Sometimes, however,
it seems to be used much as _Mana_ is used by other Oceanic peoples.
Unless one understands really thoroughly the language of a primitive
people (and I do not pretend so to understand Taiyal) it is difficult
always to trace the association of ideas; but apparently, in this
connection, the association is that when a man is guided minutely by
the spirit of some powerful ancestor, he himself becomes imbued with
more than human power and wisdom and strength.

The heart and the pupil of the eye seem closely associated by the
Taiyal with the spirit of each individual and are sometimes spoken of,
separately and together, as _Ottofu_. The spirit of oneself is thought
to separate itself from one’s body during sleep; also it is liable to
jump out suddenly if one sneezes, and in this case perhaps be lost
permanently; hence a sneeze is considered to portend bad luck.

As regards life after death, the Taiyal believe that only the good
spirits go to the “high mountain,” to which reference has been made.
This local Mount Olympus seems to be situated on one of the high peaks
of the great central mountain range of the island. In order to reach
it--or to attempt to reach it--each spirit, after death, must pass over
a narrow bridge spanning a deep chasm. The men who have been successful
as warriors and as huntsmen pass over in safety; also the women who
have been skilful at weaving. Men who have been unsuccessful in war or
in the chase, and women who have lacked skill at the loom, or have been
idle, fall from the bridge down into the dirty water that lies at the
bottom of the chasm.

Most of the Taiyal tribal groups believe--as do the majority of the
other tribes of the island--that their ancestors sprang from the
bamboo. But one of the Taiyal sub-groups--the Taruko, the “High-cliffs
people,” to whom I have already referred as being of lighter colour
and more regular feature than most of the Taiyal tribes-people--have
a curious legend as to their origin. They believe that they are the
descendants of a princess who was married to a dog “somewhere over the
mountains.” A similar legend is said to be current among some tribes in
Java and Sumatra, which is not surprising; nor is it surprising that
the same belief should be held by many of the Lu-chu Islanders--these
being obviously kindred peoples. But an interesting point is that the
same folk-tale is said to exist among certain tribes in Siberia.

The few remaining members of the Saisett tribe have adopted most of the
practices, religious and otherwise, of their powerful neighbours, the
Taiyal; so these need not be considered separately.

So much, then, for the religious beliefs and observances of the
aborigines of the main island.

The Yami--the tribe living on the tiny thirty-mile-in-circumference
island of Botel Tobago (or “Koto Sho,” as the Japanese call it), about
thirty-five miles south of Formosa proper--differ somewhat in religion,
as in other matters, from their neighbours of the large island. The
Yami also observe a semi-annual religious festival; but in their case
the celebration is in honour of the “Sea God,” offerings of fruit,
of food, and of flowers being cast into the sea on these occasions.
No offering of wine is made, as is the case with the other tribes at
their religious festivals, for the reason that the Yami seem to know
nothing of either the making or the drinking of wine--one of the few
primitive peoples of whom this is true. They have a tradition that
their ancestors “came up out of the sea”; hence their worship of the
“Sea God”--a reminiscence probably of the fact that their ancestors
came across the sea from some other island, possibly from one of the
Philippine group, judging from the resemblance of the Yami, generally
speaking, to a Philippine tribe--that of Batan island.[76]

At the time of their celebrations in honour of the “Sea God” the Yami
wear wonderful hats, or helmets, made of silver coins, beaten thin.
These coins they obtain from the Japanese, in exchange for the products
of their own marvellously fertile little island, when the Japanese
boats stop at Botel Tobago, which they now do once a month. The beaten
coins are pierced and strung together on grass fibres--or on wires,
when these can be obtained from the Japanese. The stiff bands thus made
are built up into enormous pyramid-shaped head-pieces, worn by both men
and women.[77] These constitute the chief article of dress, the Yami
being less skilled in weaving than the aborigines of the main island,
although the women wear garlands of flowers and of shells.

As the spring festival in honour of the “Sea God” comes at the time
of the vernal equinox, coinciding approximately with the Christian
Easter, the great silver helmets of the Yami can but remind one of the
Easter hats of more civilized lands. And now that the fact is generally
accepted by students of comparative religion and folk-lore that
“Easter” is a pre-Christian festival--common to many lands and races,
only, at the present time in the Western world, given an Anno Domini
interpretation, as is the case with Christmas and the other festivals
of the Church--it is perhaps justifiable to wonder whether the custom
of donning gala attire at Easter may not have a very ancient origin, as
many centuries pre-Christian as the festival itself in celebration of
the awakening of the earth to renewed life.

With the Yami--the Botel Tobago folk--the New Year is reckoned from the
great spring festival. Most of the tribes on the main island of Formosa
count the New Year as beginning at the time of the harvest festival in
the autumn.

Before leaving the subject of RELIGION as this is counted among the
aborigines, it may be mentioned that the seventeenth-century Dutch
writers--Father Candidius and others--speak of numerous temples--“one
to every sixteen houses”--as existing among the aborigines. They do
not mention which tribe, or tribes, had these temples, but the context
would seem to imply the Paiwan, or perhaps the Ami. While these temples
doubtless existed at the time that the Dutch Fathers wrote, they no
longer do so. The nearest approach to a temple is the house of chief
or priestess, especially among the Paiwan, where such carvings as have
been described are found. These carved tablets perhaps represent a
system of temples and temple-worship which once existed.


[64] A tribal group, or unit, usually consists of several villages near
together, under the same rulership, and having the same organization
and regulations.

[65] See map.

[66] Sometimes called the Story of Kaguya-Hime.

[67] See illustration.

[68] See illustration, p. 116.

[69] See p. 115.

[70] See p. 118.

[71] See map.

[72] The word “nation” is here used in the sense that it is commonly
used in connection with the tribal groupings of the American Indians.

[73] See _Totemism and Exogamy_ (vol. i), by Sir James Frazer.

[74] Even under “conditions of civilization,” however, eugenists
hold that more male infants than female are born, but fewer reach
maturity. Among primitive peoples the disproportion seems greater;
that is, except among those tribes where the women are deliberately
fattened--supposedly to enhance their beauty--as is the case with
certain of the African tribes; or except among those where polygamy
exists, which Frazer suggests may tend to increase the proportion of
females (see _Totemism and Exogamy_, vol. i.).

[75] This attitude of reverencing the priestesses as rain-destroyers
is in curious contrast with that of certain African tribes (e.g.
the Dinkas and Shilluks, according to Dr. Seligman), with whom the
king--who is also chief priest--is called “rain-maker”; this difference
of point of view of course being due to difference of climatic

[76] The resemblance of certain members of the Yami tribe to the
Papuans--such as those of the Solomon Islands--has already been noted
(p. 103).

[77] See frontispiece.



The Point of View of the Aborigines regarding Sex--Courtship preceding
Marriage--Consultation of the Bird Omen and of Bamboo Strips as to the
Auspicious Day for the Wedding--The Wedding Ceremony--Mingling by the
Priestess of Drops of Blood taken from the Legs of Bride and Groom;
Ritual Drinking from a Skull--Honeymoon Trips and the setting-up of
House-keeping--Length of Marriage Unions.

Turning from the subject of religious observances to that of marriage
customs, one finds the same close association between the two in
Formosa as in other lands. Indeed, the association is more close
than in countries like England and America, or present-day Russia;
since among the aborigines of Formosa there exists no registry office
or other place where a civil marriage can be performed. In Formosa
marriage means always a religious ceremony, one demanding the presence
of the most powerful priestess of the local group. In some cases,
several priestesses take part in the ceremony. This is especially true
of certain of the groups among the Taiyal tribe, or nation.

Among those tribes, including the Taiyal, that have come least
into touch with alien culture--Chinese, Japanese, or European--the
religious side of the marriage ceremony seems to consist largely in
purificatory rites--rites which tend to neutralize, as it were, the
difference between the sexes. Sex is, to the aborigines of Formosa--as
to many primitive peoples,--a thing of mystery, and one fraught with
danger--danger not only to the man and woman chiefly concerned, but
also to the tribal group, or whole tribe. The welfare or “ill-fare”
of the tribal unit is a consideration which seems always taken into
account, even in connection with matters which people at a different
stage of evolution would regard as being purely personal and private;
these primitive folk being in some respects practical socialists, in
spite of the fact that they are under the domination of a theocracy.

Before going on to speak in detail of the marriage ceremony, it may be
well to say a few words in regard to the courtship which precedes it.

To one who has never been in the Orient, it may seem a matter of course
that courtship should precede marriage. This, however, is very far
from being the case in most Oriental countries, as all know who have
been “east of Suez.” Certainly both in China and Japan, marriages are
arranged entirely by the parents of the young people, often with the
aid of a professional “go-between,” the bride and bridegroom-to-be
sometimes not even knowing each other. The idea that a young woman
should express any preference on her own part as to the choice of a
husband would be considered most indelicate.

This, then, makes it the more surprising that a people not only
geographically so near to China and Japan, but one that is evidently so
closely akin racially to the Japanese--a fact that is now recognized
by practically all scientific Japanese ethnologists--should observe
customs of courtship which resemble those prevailing in the Western
world, rather than those characteristic of the Orient. Nor is this
true of one or two tribes only. It is true of all the tribes of the
_Chin-huan_ (“green savages”), and even also of those sections of the
Ami, Piyuma, and Paiwan tribes that live directly on the east coast,
and that have, through contact with the Chinese, become in other
respects partly Sinicized. Their own customs of courtship and marriage,
however, have remained up to this time intact.

“When a young man’s fancy”--not lightly, but seriously, always, in the
case of the aborigine--“turns to thoughts of love,” he begins to pay
court to the maiden of his choice by going each evening about sunset to
her home. Instead, however, of calling, Occidental fashion, upon the
young lady or upon her parents, he contents himself with--not exactly
sitting upon her doorstep, since she, in the first place, has no
doorstep, and since he, in the second place, being a Malay, never sits,
as we of the West think of that attitude; but, rather, with squatting
in front of the door-way of her hut and beginning to play upon a bamboo
musical instrument which somewhat resembles a jews’-harp, and which
is played in much the same way. The sound produced is, to the Western
ear, more like a wail or lament than like a love-song. However, in
Formosa it is--as far as the aborigines are concerned--the practically
universal method of serenading one’s lady-love, and is apparently
enjoyed both by the serenading warrior and by the young lady. The lover
often keeps up the performance for hours at a time, and returns the
next evening, and for many succeeding evenings, to repeat it. All this
time he makes no attempt to pay any other form of address to the young
lady, or to ingratiate himself with her parents. Finally, after some
weeks of this nightly serenading, he leaves the bamboo jews’-harp one
evening at the lady’s door. When he returns next evening if he finds
it still lying there, he knows that his suit has been rejected; and as
in Formosa a woman’s “No” apparently _means_ “No,” the swain makes no
further attempts to renew the courtship, as far as that particular lady
is concerned. At least, this has been the case as far as my observation
has extended; and apparently to attempt to do otherwise would be one
of the things that is “not done” in the best Formosan society; the
etiquette of primitive peoples being--as is well known by those who
have been among them--curiously rigid on many points.

On the other hand, if the swain finds that the harp which he left
has been taken into the house of the young lady, he regards it as
an indication that his suit has been successful, and that he will be
acceptable as a husband to the maiden of his choice. He thereupon
enters the hut, where he is welcomed by the young lady as her formally
betrothed, and by her parents as a future son-in-law.

With the Tsuou tribe, it is customary for the lover to leave an
ornamental hair-pin, called _susu_, carved from deer-horn, in front of
the door of his beloved, either in place of the musical instrument or
together with it. The young braves of the Paiwan tribe leave food and
water, as well as the jews’-harp, before the young lady’s door.

Among the Ami--or at least among certain tribal groups of this
people--the devotion of the lover takes a utilitarian turn. On the
night that he begins the musical serenade he brings with him four
bundles of fuel--wood cut into sticks of convenient length for burning
under the cooking-pots. A number of these sticks--such as would form a
good armful for a woman--are bound together into a bundle, and wrapped
about with wild vine. The four bundles the serenader deposits at his
inamorata’s door. The second night he brings another bundle, which--on
departing after the serenade--he adds to those left the night before.
The third night he brings still another; and so on, until a pile
of twenty bundles (never either more or less) stand as a monument
testifying to his affection for the lady of his choice. On the night
that the twentieth bundle is added to the pile, the jews’-harp is also
left. This is the night that decides his fate. Next day he returns to
find whether the monument is still standing, or whether the lady, by
using it as firewood, has seen fit to reward his devotion. The wood
of which these bundles are made is always from a tree of a certain
kind.[78] Two or three of these trees--young saplings--are planted,
or transplanted, with certain ceremonies, by every boy of the tribal
groups among whom this fuel-offering custom exists, when he is about
ten years old.

In all cases, and among all the tribes, the acceptance on the part of
the lady of the offerings of the love-lorn swain means acceptance of
himself as a husband.

“What would happen,” I asked several members--men and women--of the
Taiyal tribe, “if an engagement were broken? Would the young lady
return the presents?”

“Break an engagement?” They all looked puzzled. “That would mean
breaking a promise that had been made, would it not? But that is not
the custom.” The voice of the priestess, who was the spokeswoman of the
group, was shocked.

“It is a thing not unheard of in some parts of the world,” I explained.

“I speak not of savages,”[79] the old woman disdainfully replied.

Almost immediately after the acceptance of the suitor a priestess is
consulted, and she, in turn, consults the bird-omen--for in Formosa
to-day it is considered quite as true as it was in Greece, in the days
of Hesiod, that--

    “Lucky and bless’d is he who, knowing all these things,
    Toils in the fields, blameless before the Immortals,
    Knowing in birds and not over-stepping tabus.”[80]

Whether or not in Hesiodic Greece birds were supposed to be mouthpieces
of ancestors, I do not know; but certainly this is the case in
present-day Formosa. The ancestors of bride and groom are supposed to
indicate through the cries of birds of a certain species--the same
species that is consulted on head-hunting expeditions--the auspicious
day for the wedding.

Sometimes, in order to “make assurance doubly sure,” or to decide a
moot point in regard to the exact day, should there be any difference
of opinion among the priestesses as to the interpretation of the
bird-omen, strips of bamboo, some uncoloured, some blackened with soot,
are thrown by the priestesses into the air. Upon the way in which these
fall--the relative numbers of blacks and whites, and also, apparently,
upon the pattern that is supposed to be formed by these strips as they
fall to the ground--the final decision as to the day is made.

At the wedding ceremony, bride and groom in their best regalia--this
on the groom’s part including the successful warrior’s cap and long
knife--squat in the centre of a circle formed by relatives and friends.
Among most of the tribes the bride and groom are back to back. A
priestess, or more frequently several priestesses, dance, swaying and
chanting, about the young couple, cutting the air with their knives, to
drive away evil spirits, which would otherwise attack a newly married
couple. Before the knife-dance ends the chief priestess usually makes
a slight cut in one of the legs of both bride and bridegroom, presses
out a few drops of blood from each and mingles this blood on her
knife. This also seems to be done with the idea of neutralizing evil
influences that would otherwise attend the consummation of a marriage.

Feasting and drinking follow the ceremony proper--or at least that part
of the ceremony just described. The concluding portion of the ceremony
consists in the drinking by bride and groom together from a skull.
This skull is preferably one which has been taken from an enemy by the
bridegroom himself, and among the Taiyal this is usually the case even
to-day. The Bunun and Paiwan often content themselves with drinking
from skulls taken by the father, or grandfather, of the groom; while
the other tribes, especially the Ami and Piyuma, have so far departed
from the ways of their fathers that a monkey’s skull, or occasionally a
deer’s skull, is now often substituted--for which effeminacy they are
held in great contempt by the Taiyal.

The newly married couple, among most of the aboriginal tribes of
Formosa, do not live with the parents of either bride or groom, their
custom in this respect also being more in accord with that of the
Occident than with that of most parts of the Orient.

After marriage they “set up housekeeping” for themselves, in a bamboo
or stone hut, according to the tribe.[81] As a matter of fact, among
the Taiyal, the newly married couple seem often to retire into the
forest or jungle for several days after the marriage ceremony,[82] and
only upon their return from this sylvan honeymoon does the bridegroom
build the hut, while the bride has her face tattooed by the priestesses
with the insignia of matronhood--a design which extends from lip to
ear, and which will be described at greater length under the head of
TATTOOING. The Taiyal women, alone, have their faces tattooed at
puberty and at marriage. Among the other tribes the state of matronhood
seems to be designated by the wearing of a turban, or head-cloth.

The Piyuma tribe presents the only exception to the rule that after
marriage young people are expected to set up house-keeping on their own
account. In this tribe, which is matrilocal, as well as matripotestal,
the bridegroom transfers himself and all his belongings to the home of
the bride, and is thenceforth known as a member of her family.[83]

Among none of the tribes did I find evidence of exogamy--in the usually
accepted sense of that word. The regulations restricting the marriage
of near relatives are, however, rigid. Marriage of first cousins is
forbidden; or rather it is “frowned upon,” as regards the marriage
of cousins on either side of the family. But among the Ami, Piyuma,
Tsarisen, and Paiwan tribes marriage with the first cousin on the
mother’s side is absolutely forbidden. Among the other tribes it is
marriage with the first cousin on the father’s side that is strictly
tabu. Nor does it ever seem to occur to the young people even to
attempt to defy these tribal tabus.

Regarding the permanency of marriage-unions. Among the “Savages of the
North”--the Taiyal and Saisett--the separation of husband and wife
is almost unknown, with the exception of those few unions, already
referred to, where the woman is apparently of mixed pigmy blood. With
the tribes of the South, however, separation is more frequent, based
apparently--in many cases certainly--on “mutual incompatibility.” In
such cases the separation is usually a peaceful one, both husband and
wife frequently remarrying. It is among the Ami that the frequency of
separation and remarriage reaches its height, marriages in this tribe
often not lasting more than two years; that is, among young people. A
marriage that occurs between people of thirty-five years or over (in
which case, naturally, according to the custom of this tribe, both have
been married before) is usually a lasting one.

The children of temporary unions, such as have been described, go
sometimes with one parent, sometimes with the other. The arrangement
seems always an amicable one, the grandparents of the children often
deciding the matter. Priestesses are also usually consulted on this
point, as on others that affect either individual or tribal welfare.


[78] _Melia japonica._

[79] Or “the low-born,” her words might also be translated.

[80] Hesiod, _Works and Days_, verse 825 (as translated by Miss E. J.

[81] The different methods of house-building will be dealt with under

[82] Among a few groups living in the eastern section of the territory
inhabited by the Taiyal, there is a special “bride-house,” i.e. a hut
erected on piles, some twenty feet above ground. In this “bride-house”
every newly married couple of the tribal group must spend the first
five days and nights after marriage. The house is exorcised by the
priestesses before the entrance of the bridal pair.

[83] The newly married couple among the Paiwan--the tribe adjoining
the Piyuma--live for a short time only with the parents of the bride,
before building a home of their own. According to tradition, this tribe
was once altogether matrilocal, as the Piyuma still are. Among certain
groups of the Ami also, the newly married couple live for a time with
the parents of the bride.



Belief that Illness is due to Evil _Ottofu_--Ministrations of the
Priestess--A Seventeenth-century Dutch Record of the Treatment of
the Dying by the Formosan Aborigines--The “Dead Houses” of the
Taiyal--Burial of the Dead by the Ami, Bunun, and Paiwan Tribes beneath
the Hearth-stone of the Home--“Green” and “Dry” Funerals.

As on occasions of rejoicing--marriage, harvest-festivals,
celebration of successful war or hunting expeditions--so in times of
sorrow--illness or death--are the ministrations of the priestesses
in demand. Illness--except that which is the direct result of
wounds received in foray or battle--is regarded as being due to the
machinations of the malevolently inclined, living or dead. That is, it
may be a living enemy whose evil and powerful _Ottofu_ causes pain and
illness; or it may be the _Ottofu_ of the ghost of some dead enemy.
Serious illness is more usually attributed to the latter, since the
_Ottofu_ of a ghost is considered to have more power than that of any
living person.

Naturally the element of terror enters into such a conception; also
that of helplessness, since against an enemy already dead there can
be no reprisal. The advantage is all on the side of the dead man--an
auto-suggestion which tends, of course, to aggravate the illness of the

In any case of illness a priestess is summoned. The usual mode of
procedure on the part of this lady is first to wave a banana-leaf
over the patient, chanting as she does so. This is evidently to
brush away--or frighten away--any evilly inclined _Ottofu_ that may
be hovering about. Then, squatting by the side of the sufferer, she
begins to suck at that spot on his--or her--body where the patient
complains of greatest pain, and to breathe upon it; now and then she
stops sucking, and rocks herself to and fro, as she balances on her
heels, chanting in time to the rocking motion. If it be suspected
that the _Ottofu_ of a living enemy has caused the illness, the
priestess will throw into the air her strips of black and white (i.e.
natural-coloured) bamboo, and upon the pattern formed by these, as they
fall, will depend her decision as to who is responsible for the illness
of the patient. The guilty person will thereupon be hunted down by
relatives of the ill man or woman,[84] and a blood-feud will result,
for illness or suffering caused by the living can be cured only by the
death of the one responsible.

Should the priestess decide, however, that it is the _Ottofu_ of a
ghost which has caused the trouble, then only “prayer and fasting” can
avail--or can be tried, the prayer taking the form of chanting, which
often becomes wild and hysterical, the priestess sometimes rising
to her feet and dancing as she chants. Apparently the point of the
chanting is to invoke the ghosts of the ill man’s ancestors, and to
beseech these to overcome the ghost of his enemy. If, by chance, the
patient survives the sucking and chanting, and recovers, his recovery
is of course attributed to the intercession of the priestess.

Among many of the sub-tribes--or tribal groups--of the Taiyal,
especially those living in the eastern part of the Taiyal territory,
the officiating priestess, in cases of serious illness, attempts to
learn the decision of the ghost-ancestors, as to whether they will
restore the patient to health, or whether they consider it time for
him to join themselves. This she does by grasping tightly between her
knees a bamboo tube which projects in front; on this tube she balances
a stone with a hole pierced through it--an object which is considered
sacred. Above this sacred object she waves her hands. If the stone
remains balanced on the bamboo, it is thought the patient will recover.
If it drops to the ground, it is believed that the ancestors have
determined to call the ill man to themselves.

In any case, if death is seen to be inevitable, relatives and friends
of the dying man gather about his bedside and “wail his spirit across
the bridge.”[85]

The Dutch writers of the seventeenth century state that among certain
of the aborigines of Formosa (which tribe is not specified) it was
the custom to take the very ill man out of his hut, bind a rope of
vegetable fibre or twisted vines about his body, and by means of this
rope suspend him to the bent-down spring-branch of a tree, then release
the branch, which release would have the effect of throwing the dying
man violently to the ground, thus “breaking his neck and all his
limbs.” The aborigines told the Dutch that they did this in order to
shorten the suffering of the dying. But the Dutch missionary Fathers,
who claimed to have witnessed this peculiar act of barbarity, seemed
to think the real motive which actuated those responsible was to save
themselves the trouble of tending the ill and dying.

To whatever extent this custom may have prevailed in the days of the
Dutch occupation of the island, it is, I think, no longer observed,
either among the Taiyal nation of the North or among any of the various
tribes of the South. Whether or not the giving up of this practice
among those tribes where it formerly existed was due to the influence
of the Dutch missionaries, I do not know. If so, it seems never to have
been resumed. Among the tribes of both the North and the South, at the
present time, the ill and dying are tended by priestesses and wailed
over by members of the family--and, if a person of prominence, by other
members of the village or community as well--until the breath has left
the body.

After death there is a difference among the tribes as to the
disposition of the body. With the Taiyal--also the Saisett, the smaller
tribe of the North which seems to have borrowed Taiyal customs--the
dead man or woman is simply left in the house which was his, or her,
abode during life. In the case of a man, the weapons which he used
during life, also pipe and tobacco, are left with the body; in the case
of a woman, agricultural implements--hoe or digging-stick--and tobacco
are left. The loom which she used, for some reason, is not left. This
distinction--between agricultural implements and loom--apparently is
made because the former is regarded as belonging exclusively to the
individual woman, while the latter is used communally by a number of
women of the village. At least such is the explanation given; but one
cannot help wondering to what extent considerations of a practical
nature enter into the distinction made, since a digging-stick or hoe,
such as is used by Taiyal women, can be made in much less than a day,
while it requires many days of labour to make a loom.

With the bodies of both men and women a little food and wine are
left--a share in the funeral feast, which is partaken of by every
adult member of the village, including the nearest relations of the
deceased, whose appetites do not seem to be affected by their loss.

In all the “dead-houses” that I have seen the roof has been broken
in. This I am told is done by the funeral party at the time that they
abandon the house; but whether by thus covering the corpse with the
broken-in roof--bamboo and grass--the intention is to save the body
from desecration by dogs or other animals, or whether it is to prevent
the spirit of the dead man from quitting the house in which his body
has been left, is an open question. Certainly the living seem to stand
much in dread of the _Ottofu_ of the recently deceased. This was
impressed upon me more than once when I attempted to go near one or
another of these abandoned houses of the dead. I was gently drawn back
and made to understand that I was running very grave danger.

As the Taiyal houses are built only of bamboo and of a sort of coarse
grass which grows in the mountains, the erection of a new house for the
family of the deceased is not a serious undertaking; more especially
as all the men of the village assist at the building of the new house,
which is always erected at a respectful distance from the one that has
been given over to the dead. The new house is often erected in a single

It may be that the difference in the style of houses--consequently in
the amount of time and labour involved in their construction--accounts
for the difference in burial customs between the Taiyal, on the one
hand, and certain of the southern tribes, notably the Paiwan and a
portion of the Ami and Bunun, on the other. Those of the Ami who live
immediately on the coast, in the vicinity of Chinese villages, have
adopted the Chinese custom of inhumation of the dead outside the house;
but those who live inland from the coast follow what was evidently
their original custom, as it is still that of the Paiwan and the
eastern Bunun; namely, the burial of the dead, in a crouching position,
underneath the hearth-stone of the family home. Gruesome as the custom
may seem to Western minds--and unhygienic--it is accepted as a matter
of course by the tribes among whom it exists, and the idea of its
exciting horror in the mind of anyone else seems to them incredible and
absurd. The houses of the people who practise this peculiar form of
inhumation are substantially built of slate (the mode of construction
to be described in greater detail under a subsequent heading); one or
more slabs of slate being used as a hearth, on which a fire is kept
always burning--or, during the dry season, smouldering.

When the death occurs of any member of the family, the body is bound
with strands of coarse grass in a stooping, or crouching, posture. Then
after the usual funeral ceremonies, both of wailing and of feasting,
are concluded, the ashes are scraped from the hearth--care being
taken, however, that the coals are kept “alive,” for should these be
extinguished, or grow cold, it would be considered an omen of evil, and
would also “displease the _Ottofu_” of the dead--and the hearth-stones
are removed. A deep hole is dug in the place from which the stones have
been moved. This is usually lined with grass before the body is lowered
into it. The personal belongings of the deceased are also placed in the
grave, which is then filled in, the hearth-stone replaced, and the fire
rekindled. Then the life of the surviving members of the household goes
on as before.

After several members of the household have died, naturally the
space occupied by the graves extends beyond that covered by the
hearth-stones, but always the graves are grouped as closely as possible
beneath the hearth. Whether originally this was done that the heat of
the fire might the more quickly decompose the bodies I do not know.
At the present time the only reason given for this custom is the
stereotyped one, “Thus have our fathers always done”--an answer which
makes one wonder, in connection with many customs, at what point in
evolution man ceased to be satisfied with this reason for doing, or
leaving undone, the things which make up the routine of his life.

The funeral customs of the western Bunun--or of certain communities
among them--are reminiscent of the customs, described by the Dutch
Fathers, as having been in vogue among the aborigines in their day.
Among these people--the western Bunun--the dead receive both a “green”
and a “dry” funeral. After death the body is slowly dried for nine
days before a fire in the house in which the deceased died, funeral
festivities being continued by the living during this time. This
process is said partially to mummify, or desiccate, the body (I have
not myself been present at such a funeral). At the end of the ninth
day, the body is wrapped in cloths and placed on a platform in the
open, similar to that on which the dead of the American Indians of the
western plains are placed. This platform is also draped about with
native cloth. At the end of three years, the bones are removed from the
platform and buried beneath the house which the man had occupied during
his lifetime. This second, or “dry,” funeral is, like the first, or
“green” one, made an occasion for drinking and feasting--an essential
part of every ceremony, whether of rejoicing or of sorrow. After the
“dry” funeral, the widow, or widower, of the deceased is considered
free to contract another alliance, should he, or she, feel so inclined.
To remarry before the “dry” funeral, three years after the death of
the deceased, would be contrary to tribal custom; therefore one of the
things that is never done.

Among none of the tribes of the Formosans did I see any evidence of the
wearing of the bones of the deceased as an indication of mourning--as
is the case in certain parts of Indonesia. Nor is there anything
approaching “suttee,” or the sacrifice, in any form, of the widow at
the death of her husband. This, however, would scarcely be expected in
a country where women “hold the upper hand,” as is apparently the case
in Formosa.




[84] I have never heard that a woman was supposed to be responsible for
illness. Just what would happen in such a case--if a living woman were
suspected--I do not know.

[85] The bridge referred to on p. 147.



Various Types of Dwelling-houses Peculiar to the Different
Tribes--Ingenious Suspension-bridges and Communal Granaries
Common to all the Tribes--Weapons and the Methods of their
Ornamentation--Weaving and Basket-making--Peculiar Indonesian Form of
Loom--Pottery-making--Agricultural Implements and Fish-traps--Musical
Instruments: Nose-flute; Musical Bow; Bamboo Jews’-harp--Personal

To deal adequately with this subject would require a volume in itself.
In this book I shall speak only of those forms of arts and crafts which
are either peculiar to the Formosans or which seem to show their racial
affinity to other peoples.

First, as regards their dwelling-houses. The mode of construction of
these varies among the different tribes, and has already been referred
to in the preceding chapter, in connection with funeral rites. The
houses of the Taiyal--simple bamboo and grass shelters, having only a
doorway, but no windows[86]--call for little in the way of detailed
description. These huts are mere sleeping-places, the beds being
bamboo benches, built against the sides of the wall, at about two feet
elevation from the ground. Only in rainy weather is either cooking or
weaving done inside the house. The interior of the hut is in almost
total darkness, the doorway being both narrow and low; so low that even
a woman has to stoop in order to enter it. The smaller tribes whose
territory adjoins that of the Taiyal also build huts after the fashion
of their more powerful neighbours.

The Ami folk, certainly those living on, or near, the coast, substitute
roughly hewn planks or small saplings for bamboo. This may, perhaps, be
due to Chinese influence.

The houses of the Bunun and Paiwan are much more substantial, and are
constructed on an altogether different principle, these houses being
of the “pit-dwelling” type. With these tribes it is to _dig_ a house,
rather than to _build_ one, since a larger portion of the structure
is below ground than above it. A space about ten feet by twelve is
cleared of trees and jungle growth, and a pit is dug. This pit is
usually between four and five feet deep. The sides of the pit are lined
with slabs of slate, quarried by the tribesmen. These slate walls are
carried up about three feet above the surface of the earth, thus giving
a wall-height to the house of about seven feet. For the roof bamboo
poles are first laid across from wall to wall, then on top of these are
placed other slabs of slate, giving the house a substantial, but rather
cave-like, appearance.[87] The effect upon a stranger entering a Paiwan
village is to make him wonder, first whether he has been transported
into a land of gnomes, and secondly--and more seriously--whether or not
the gnome-tradition may have arisen from a subterranean-dwelling people
similar to the present-day Paiwan.

In all probability the slate pit-dwellings were originally constructed
as places of refuge from the warlike, predatory tribes of the North;
and judging from the number of enemy skulls in Paiwan villages,
these slate refuges were effective. Curiously enough, however,
the “bachelor-houses,” in which the young unmarried men live, are
built of wood, on high piles, or stakes. The mode of entry to these
bachelor-houses has already been described.[88] The young men are
supposed to have at least one of their number constantly on guard, in
order to detect the possible approach of an enemy. In such an event a
warning is given, when the women and children retreat within the slate
houses. The married men also repair to their houses, but only long
enough to collect their arms; when, having done so, they sally forth to
join the bachelors in an attack upon the enemy. Only, as a last resort,
when hard pressed by the enemy, do the men--in such an emergency,
bachelors as well as married men--retreat within the slate huts and,
firing through doors and windows, attempt to keep the enemy at bay.
Among the Paiwan the house of a chief has usually three windows, and
the house of a commoner always one, sometimes two; consequently this
mode of “aggressive defence” is often successful.

Among the peace-loving Yami--the inhabitants of the tiny island of
Botel Tobago--slate houses are not found. Family houses, as well as the
“long-houses” of the bachelors, are of the “pile-dwelling” variety.


_The houses are of the pit-dwelling variety; a larger portion of each
house is below ground._]

However the dwelling-houses of the different tribes may vary, the
millet granaries of all the tribes seem built after an identical
pattern. There is in each village of every tribe a communal granary--a
hut, built sometimes of wood, sometimes of bamboo, but always supported
on pillars, some five or six feet above the ground. Near the top
of each of the four pillars is a round piece of wood (among the
Paiwan slate is sometimes substituted for wood) supposed to prevent
rats and mice “and such small deer” from entering the granary.[89]
This _rokko_, as the Taiyal call the “rat-preventer” (to translate
literally), is found in the granaries and store-houses of many of
the Oceanic peoples--both in the Lu-chu Islands and in certain parts
of Melanesia; a coincidence which is not surprising. It is, however,
rather surprising to find the same device used among the Ainu of
Hokkaido and Saghalien. This fact tends rather to upset one’s theory
that the culture of the Formosan aborigines is of purely Indonesian
origin--unless perhaps one accepts the hypothesis that in this instance
the Ainu have borrowed a custom from their southern neighbours; or
again, unless it be a case of “independent origin,” a discussion of the
pros and cons regarding which theory cannot be attempted here.

Far more remarkable than the dwelling-houses or granaries of the
Formosan aborigines are the long suspension-bridges, which with
marvellous skill they construct of bamboo, held together only with
deer-hide thongs, or occasionally with tendrils of a curiously tough
vine growing in the mountains, and throw across the deep chasms and
ravines which abound in the interior of the island, especially in the
mountainous section inhabited by the Taiyal, Bunun, and Paiwan tribes.
These bridges are now imitated by the Japanese, as regards shape and
construction. Only the material is different, galvanized iron and wire
being substituted for bamboo and thongs. Ingenious bamboo fences are
also constructed by the Taiyal, surrounding their village communities.

The weapons of the men, bow and arrows and knives, have been referred
to before. Both knives and arrow-heads were formerly made of flint,
but for many years iron has been used[90]; this being obtained by
barter, until recently from the Chinese and now usually from the
Japanese. The few old stone knives still remaining among them are
regarded as sacred, and are used by the priestesses in warding off
evil _Ottofu_ at marriage ceremonies and on occasions of illness--as
has been described in preceding chapters. The knives are not of the
wavy “kris” variety used by some of the Malay peoples, but have one
curve, the cutting edge being on the convex side of this curve. The
scabbard of this knife consists of a single piece of wood hollowed
out to fit the blade. Across the hollowed-out portion are fastened
twisted thongs of deer-skin or strips of bamboo, or--when these can
be obtained--strips of tin, which hold the knife in place when it is
sheathed. Old tomato-cans and milk-tins are now eagerly sought for
this purpose, and much in the way of game and millet will be offered
for them. The scabbard of a chieftain or of an honoured and successful
warrior is decorated with coloured pebbles set into the wood; or, in
the case of the Ami, who live near the sea-shore, with bits of shell or
of mother-of-pearl. The handle of the knife is bound around with wire,
when this can be obtained. Wire is considered highly ornamental, and is
greatly prized, and eagerly bargained for. It is used for ornamenting
pipes as well as knives, and is also bound about the arms, and worn as
bracelets by both women and men; besides being worn as ear-rings by the
men--twisted into huge rings, and thrust through holes in the lobes of
the ears.

The intimately personal tool of each woman is her millet-hoe, which
has already been described.[91] But the pride of the woman of each
household is the loom belonging to that household. The construction
of this loom can be better understood by looking at the accompanying
illustration of a Taiyal woman at her loom than by detailed
description. Broadly speaking, the loom is of the Indonesian type, but
the trough-like arrangement--the hollowed-out log, around which the
warp is wrapped--seems to have been evolved in Formosa alone; I do
not know of its occurring elsewhere in Indonesia, or in Melanesia or

The textile that is woven on this loom is made from a sort of native
hemp, which grows in the mountains. The only colouring matter
obtainable for dyeing the hemp is the juice of a tuber also indigenous
to the mountains. This tuber somewhat resembles a very large and rather
corrugated potato. The dye obtained from this tuber is of chocolate
colour. It is the custom to weave the textile in stripes, uncoloured
and dyed strands alternating. The effect is not displeasing, and the
material is very strong, lasting for years, and withstanding almost
any strain.[92] None of the tribes, however, are satisfied with the
subdued shade which their native dye gives; and most of them have for
years obtained, through barter, cheap Chinese blankets of brilliant
crimson, which they carefully ravel, and with the yarn thus obtained
they add fanciful designs in the weaving of their cloth. Much ingenuity
is displayed in these designs, which often express a sense of the
genuinely artistic, as well as the merely fantastic.[93]

Besides the cloth that is woven on looms, the women also make net-bags,
by means of a bamboo shuttle and mesh-gauge, not unlike those used
by American Indian women of the western plains--only the shuttle and
mesh-gauge of the latter are made of wood instead of bamboo. These bags
are of two sizes, the larger for carrying millet and other provisions,
the smaller just large enough to hold a human head. It is often upon
bags of this latter kind that the greatest amount of time and of
ingenuity is expended. Every warrior has one of these bags. Next to his
knife, it is his most treasured possession, one which he always takes
with him when going upon a head-hunting expedition. If successful, the
head of his enemy is brought back in it.


A woman who is not a good weaver or maker of bags is held in contempt
by the other women, as well as by the men; and as previously
stated--in the chapter dealing with RELIGION--it is believed that
such a woman after death will not be able to cross the bridge which
leads to the land of happiness--that occupied by her more skilful
sisters and by successful head-hunters. This feeling seems especially
strong among the Taiyal people.

In basketry and in the making of caps--a cap in Formosa being only a
sort of inverted basket with a visor--the women are as skilful as in
the weaving of cloth. This applies to all the tribes. Among the Paiwan,
the cap of the successful warrior--and now sometimes of the successful
huntsman--is decorated in front, just above the visor, with a sort of
rosette of wild boar’s tusks. This is a symbol of honour as significant
among the Paiwan as is the tattoo-mark on the chin of the successful
warrior among the Taiyal.

While both in the weaving of cloth and of baskets--including
basket-caps--the various tribes stand much on a level, there is great
difference in skill as regards the making of pottery. In this art the
Ami stand pre-eminent among the tribes on the main island.[94] Their
pots, however, are crude as compared with those of some of the peoples
of the South Pacific. The Ami do not use the coiling process in the
making of pottery, nor do they use a potter’s wheel. Their pots are
first fashioned roughly by hand; then, while the clay is still soft, a
round stone, held in the left hand, is inserted into the interior of
the pot. Around this the pot is twirled with the right hand; rather,
with a small paddle-like stick held in the right hand. This may perhaps
be called an approximation to the potter’s wheel. At any rate, the
finishing touches are given with the paddle-shaped stick, which is used
for smoothing and making symmetrical the exterior and interior of the
vessel. The pot is then dried in the sun, and afterwards baked in a
fire usually made of straw, i.e. dried mountain grass of a particular

The Yami of Botel Tobago are skilful pottery-makers, their pots
recalling in appearance those of the Papuans; but the other tribes
are crude and clumsy in their attempts at the making of pots. These
are roughly fashioned by hand, and, as they constantly break, are
apparently not sufficiently baked before being used. Consequently for
carrying water most of the tribes now use tubes of the great bamboo
that grows in Formosa. For cooking they use baskets coated inside and
out with clay, as a substitute for pots.

There is reason to believe that the skilful making of pottery was once
an art more widely spread among the different tribes than is the case
at present. Among many of the tribes there is a tradition that their
ancestors were mighty in the making of “vessels moulded from earth.”
The Tsarisen not only have this tradition, in common with the other
tribes, but also they have kept among them for many generations--just
how long there is no means of ascertaining--a few pots more skilfully
made than this tribe is capable of making at the present time. These,
they assert, were made by their ancestors, who, in turn, were taught by
the _Ottofu_ of their own ancestors. These pots are regarded as being
most sacred, and are kept in front of the house of the chief of the
principal tribal unit. So sacred are these particular pots that only
the chief, or members of his immediate family, and the chief priestess
of that tribal unit, are allowed to touch them. It is _parisha_ (tabu)
for anyone else to touch or even to come within a “body’s length” of
the sacred vessels. In Formosa--except among the Ami and the Yami
tribes--as in Polynesia, skilful pottery-making seems to be an art that
is rapidly dying out.

Implements connected with the harvesting and preparation of millet--a
short curved knife for cutting, formerly made of flint, now usually
of iron, a winnowing-fan of basket-work, and mortar and pestle of
wood--are not dissimilar to those used by other Malay peoples; nor are
they unlike those used by the Chinese and Japanese in the harvesting
and winnowing of rice. The aborigines, however, except those who have
come directly under Chinese and Japanese dominance, look with contempt
upon rice-eaters as being unclean--much as the latter regard eaters
of beef and potatoes. All tribes among the aborigines seem to regard
millet as a sacred food, the use of which was revealed to their
ancestors by “further away God-ancestors.”

The agricultural implements of the east coast Ami show greater skill of
manufacture than those of the other tribes, this perhaps being due to
contact with the Chinese.

The Ami living on, or near, the coast also make--and successfully
use--an ingenious fish-trap of bamboo having on the interior sharp
spikes or thorns, pointing inward. These act as barbs, and prevent the
fish which have entered the basket-like trap from leaving it.


(_See page 179._)]


Mention has already been made of the bamboo jews’-harp, an instrument
which seems common to all the tribes. Besides this, the Taiyal and
Tsuou tribes have two other musical instruments, the nose-flute and the
musical bow. It is possible that these may be used by other tribes,
but I think not commonly so; certainly I have not found them elsewhere
than among the Taiyal and Tsuou. And with these tribes the nose-flute
is used only by the men; it seems semi-sacred in character, as it is
played only on festive occasions, usually when celebrating a victory
over another tribe or tribal unit. Not even a priestess will play
upon a nose-flute; to do so would be “bad form.” Playing upon this
instrument is the exclusive prerogative of the sterner sex--as much so
as is the decapitation of enemies, with the celebration of which it
seems closely connected.

The musical bow also is usually played by men, although priestesses
occasionally use it as an accompaniment to their chanting during
ceremonials connected with harvest festivals, and on similar occasions.

In the way of personal adornment, women of all the tribes wear, in
addition to the wire bracelets which have previously been referred to,
necklaces made of small rectangular bits of bone, carefully polished
and strung together on sinews. These bits of bone are usually cut from
the femur of the tiny Formosan deer, with which the mountains abound.
The Yami women also wear necklaces made of seeds, and sometimes of

The most conspicuous adornments of the women, however, are the tubes of
bamboo inserted through holes cut in the lobes of the ears; brightly
coloured yarn--when this can be obtained; when not, dried grass--being
thrust into the bamboo, forming a sort of rosette at each end of the
ear-tube. This is considered highly ornamental by the tribes-people;
the larger the bamboo that the lobe of the ears will support without
being torn through, the more is its owner admired.


[86] See illustration.

[87] See illustration.

[88] See p. 124.

[89] Rats and mice are a greater curse on Botel Tobago than on the main
island of Formosa, as on the former there are not--or certainly were
not, up to a very short time ago--either dogs or cats. An opportunity
for a twentieth-century Dick Whittington suggests itself, although the
reward of the modern Dick Whittington would probably consist of flowers
and sweet potatoes--possibly of boiled millet, wrapped in banana-leaves.

[90] See Part I, p. 41.

[91] See p. 125.

[92] See illustration of author in the dress of a woman of the Taiyal

[93] Cloth thus ornamented with crimson yarn is reserved for the making
of coats and blankets for successful warriors and hunters.

[94] See illustration of Ami woman making pottery.

[95] See illustration.



Cutting away of the Lobes of the Ears and knocking out of the
Teeth--Significance of the Different Designs of Tattoo-Marking among
the Taiyal--Tattooing among the Paiwan.

One form of mutilation--that of perforating the lobes of the ears--was
referred to in the last chapter. “Perforating,” however, inadequately
describes the cutting away of the major portion of the ear-lobe,
leaving only a thin circle of flesh through which is thrust the bamboo
ear-plug. As previously described, the bamboo tube is, in the case
of women, decorated by having strands of yarn, or of dried grass,
threaded through it; this being twisted to form a rosette at either
end of the bamboo. Men also wear the bamboo ear-plug, but I have never
seen the ear-plug of a man decorated with rosettes.[96] Masculine
vanity, as regards the ear, seems to take a different form--that of
having rings of wire twisted through the hole in the lobe, between
the bamboo ear-plug and the rim of flesh beneath it, so that these
“ear-rings” hang from the ear, sometimes jingling as the wearer walks,
if he be fortunate enough to secure enough wire to make several rings
for each ear. This added weight of the rings of wire depending from
the lobe of the ear, which has already been cut to a thin strip--to
allow the passage through it of the bamboo plug--sometimes causes the
flesh to tear through. The man to whom such an accident happens meets
with little sympathy; he is regarded as a weakling, and treated with
consequent scorn.

The most painful form of mutilation, however, common among all the
tribes except the Ami, is the knocking out of the two upper lateral
incisor teeth. This constitutes a sort of puberty ceremony, being
performed upon both boys and girls when they reach the age of thirteen
or fourteen. Among the Taiyal, the teeth--instead of being knocked out
with wooden blocks, as is common among the other tribes--are often
extracted with twisted China grass, or with a strand from a loom of
one of the women of the tribe. This ceremony is usually performed
by a priestess, though among some of the tribal units the honour
of performing the dental ceremony is conferred upon a valiant and
successful warrior. The reason given for extracting the teeth of youths
and maidens is that, as these are now no longer children, they must
cease to resemble monkeys and dogs, which have not the wisdom to remove
their teeth. As, however, the same custom exists among practically
all primitive peoples, the explanation given is a dubious one, and is
obviously “thought up” for the sake of satisfying the curiosity of the
white man, or woman, who is foolish enough to want to know the “reason
why” of customs that all sensible and well-brought-up people follow as
a matter of course.

Tattooing is a form of mutilation that is followed by the two large
tribes of Taiyal and Paiwan; the small tribe of Saisett imitating the
system in vogue among the Taiyal; the Tsarisen and Piyuma imitating
that of the Paiwan. The Taiyal system is the most distinctive, and
seems to have the greatest significance as indicating the status of the
individual in the tribe. The tattooing of the Taiyal is on the face.
When a child--whether boy or girl--reaches the age of about five, it
has tattooed on its forehead a series of horizontal lines, each line
being about half an inch in length. These lines are repeated, one above
another, from a point between the eyebrows to one just below the roots
of the hair; the design when finished giving the impression of a finely
striped rectangle about half an inch in width and two and a half inches
in height. Usually several children are tattooed at the same time, and
the occasion is made one of feasting and dancing. The children are by
this ceremony formally accepted as members of the tribe, entitled to
its rights and privileges, and also expected to bear some share of its
duties and responsibilities. It is usually at this time that a boy
is made to lay his hand upon the head of an enemy decapitated by his
father--a custom to which reference has previously been made.

A Japanese lecturer in a paper read before the China Society in London
in 1916--and afterwards published--said, in speaking of the Taiyal:
“When a boy attains the age of five or six he tattoos on his forehead a
series of three blocks of horizontal lines,” etc. “A girl also tattoos
her forehead at the same age.”

It was probably the English of the lecturer in question that was at
fault, not his knowledge of the subject. As a matter of fact, no
child tattoos itself. It is always an adult--usually a priestess--who
tattoos the child. The latter reclines upon the ground; the tattooer
stands behind the child and strikes its forehead with a tattooing
implement. This is a piece of bamboo--occasionally wood--with a number
of thorns (from six to ten) fastened at one end, somewhat resembling
a miniature toothbrush.[97] Often a block of wood is held in the
tattooer’s other hand, and with this the tattooing implement is struck
after it has been laid upon the forehead; this ensures a stronger
blow, and one more accurately placed. It seems necessary that blood
be drawn; this is wiped away, and into each puncture a sort of native
lamp-black--obtained by burning oily nuts--is rubbed; the effect is to
produce lines in the design described above.

The same method is employed by the priestess in tattooing the bride--a
custom to which reference was made in the chapter dealing with MARRIAGE
CUSTOMS. In this case, however, the tattooing is done upon the cheeks,
and in a design quite different from that which is made upon the
forehead of the child. The design that indicates matronhood is one that
practically covers both cheeks, extending from the mouth (the upper
line a little above it; the lower one a little below it, to be exact)
to the ear on each side. The design tattooed upon the bride is not
rectilinear, as was that tattooed upon her forehead in childhood, but
consists of upward-curving lines, between every three or four of which
is a row of marks resembling chevrons. That is, this is the design most
usually seen. In some cases, however--and this is seen more frequently
in the case of women prominent in the tribal unit, therefore is perhaps
an insignia of rank or of honour--the design begins with three parallel
curving lines, a little space, then another line; immediately below
which are two rows of chevrons. The lower row of chevrons rests, as it
were, upon another line; again a little space, then four more parallel
lines, the whole design, when completed, being one of great elaboration.

As the bride is tattooed after the fashion described, so must the
bridegroom also be tattooed. But in his case the tattooing must be
done before marriage; this in order to show that he is a successful
warrior, and therefore entitled to enter upon the married state. This
insignia of honour and of dignity befitting a Benedict consists of
tattoo-marks on the chin--a series of straight lines, a little longer
than those pricked into the forehead in childhood. By these presents
know all men that the chin-tattooed young brave has at least one head
to his credit--though in these degenerate days it may be only a head
decapitated by his father on which his young hands have been placed.
In such a case, however, it is with humiliation and with apologetic
explanations that confession is made of the fact that the valour was by

Among the Paiwan the successful warriors are tattooed on the shoulders,
the chest, or the arms; sometimes on all these parts of the body; but
less significance seems attached by them to tattoo-marking than is the
case among the Taiyal. Social custom seems to allow the Paiwan greater
latitude in the choice of design, which seems to be regarded more as
of purely ornamental character. It is, however, possible that further
research will show as definite a system regarding tattoo-marking and
its significance to exist among the Paiwan as among the Taiyal.

Paiwan women are not tattooed on their bodies as the men of the tribe
are, or on their faces as are Taiyal women; but only on the backs
of their hands--little series of lines that approximate sometimes
squares, sometimes circles. The women of the Lu-chu islands have a
similar custom. Whether or not there has been any contact between the
two peoples would be an interesting subject for investigation.

The custom of circumcision does not seem to exist among any of the
Formosan tribes, either as a rite of puberty or of infancy. Nor did
I see any evidence while among them of finger mutilation, such as
exists among certain peoples in Africa; and also, I believe, among some
Australian tribes. Neither do young men pass through the extremely
painful initiation rites that are demanded of the young “braves” of
certain North American Indian tribes--notably the Sioux--such as
hanging suspended from a rod which is passed through the flesh of the
shoulders, walking over live coals, or the like. The most painful rite
to which either the young man or the young woman is subjected is that
of having the teeth extracted. This is usually borne with stoical
fortitude, and afterwards the youth or maiden will proudly boast of
the fact that the tongue can be seen through the teeth, and will lose
no opportunity of broadly smiling to demonstrate the truth of the


[96] The ear-plugs worn by men of the Paiwan tribe are perhaps even
larger than those worn by the men of other tribes. For this reason the
Chinese-Formosans call the Paiwan _Tao-he-lan_ (“Big Ears”).

[97] Needles obtained by barter from the Japanese are now sometimes
substituted for thorns.



Ami Wheeled Vehicle Resembling Models found in Early Cyprian
Tombs--Boat-building and the Art of Navigation on the Decline.

This subject might be dismissed with a word--so little is any method
of transport less primitive than that of human shoulders developed
among the aboriginal tribes--were it not for two facts which raise
interesting questions. One of these has to do with land transport; the
other with transport by water.

Regarding the former, the only tribe that uses any sort of wheeled
vehicle, or that knows anything of a beast of draught, is the Ami. The
vehicle of this tribe is a primitive two-wheeled cart, the interesting
point about it being that the solid wheels are fixed to the axle, the
latter revolving with each revolution of the wheels. In fact, the
construction of the cart causes it to resemble an enormous harrow
rather than any vehicle usually associated with transport. The Ami
tribes-people, however, are inordinately proud of this invention, which
they say was introduced among them by the “White Fathers” (evidently
the Dutch) of the “glorious long ago.” This cart is drawn by a
“water-buffalo,” a descendant of those said to have been brought to
Formosa by the Dutch.[98]

The question of interest in connection with this vehicle is whether or
not the Dutch of the seventeenth century used carts of so primitive a
type as that now in use among the Ami. Is it not more probable that
when the carts introduced by the Dutch fell into decay, the Ami, in
their attempts at imitation of the original model, unconsciously
reproduced a form of vehicle used by man at the “dawn of history?”[99]

Needless to say, the Ami cart produces a painful creaking, and a sound
that can be compared only to a series of _groans_ when it is drawn over
the rough roads of the east coast. This, however, apparently adds to
its attractiveness in the eyes of its owners.

Whether or not the present-day cart represents the degeneration of a
more highly evolved type of vehicle once known to the Ami would be
difficult to assert with positiveness. As regards water transport,
however, it is almost certain that degeneration has taken place among
the Ami, as among the other Formosan tribes, both in the craft of
boat-building and in the understanding of navigation. Tribal traditions
among all the aborigines point to the fact that their ancestors were
skilful navigators and that they understood the construction of boats
capable of making long voyages. But the rafts used for fishing at the
present time by those tribes living on the east coast could not be
used for making even a short sea voyage. Nor could the plank canoes
also used for fishing which a few tribal units of the Ami, living
near Pinan, build--in obvious, though crude, imitation of the Chinese
fishing-junk--be used for navigation.

Of all the aboriginal tribes, the most skilful boat-builders are the
Yami, of Botel Tobago. Their boats, like their pottery, resemble
more those of the Papuans of the Solomon Islands than they do those
of the other Formosan tribes--this both in mode of construction and
in ornamentation. These boats are not dug-outs, but are built from
tree-trunks, smoothed and trimmed with adzes, lashed together--through
holes bored near the seams--with withes of rattan. Prow and stern
are rounded in graceful curves. The boats present a picturesque and
attractive appearance, but cannot be used for making long voyages.

That the tribes living in the interior of the island should have lost
the art of navigation is not surprising, as on the east side of the
mountain range--within which section the present “savage territory”
lies--there are no navigable rivers, and in the mountains is only one
lake, the beautiful _Jitsugetsutan_ (“Sun and Moon Lake”), so-called by
the Japanese.[100] On this lake those members of the Taiyal and Tsuou
tribes who live near it paddle in their dug-out canoes. These dug-outs,
however, are of the most primitive type, with open ends, obviously
unfitted for seafaring. Even a storm on the lake sends the canoes
hurriedly paddling to shore. But the Ami and the Yami, and also the
Paiwan and Piyuma, have not the excuse that applies to the tribes of
the interior. Before these tribes lies the open sea, over which their
ancestors navigated. That they should have lost the art of building and
of navigating seaworthy craft is strange; as strange as is the fact
that many of the tribes have lost the art of successful pottery-making,
which according to tradition--and also judging from the few ancient
specimens preserved among the Tsarisen--their ancestors seem to have

Whether the losing of these arts implies that the tribes since they
have been in Formosa have not had material as suitable for making
either seaworthy boats or uncrumbling pottery as they had in the land
whence they came, or whether it implies that they are an “ageing”
people, a people who have lost their “grip on life,” and have no longer
either inventive ability or mechanical skill, is a question which I
shall not attempt to answer. It is one which presents an interesting
field for speculation and also for further investigation.


[98] See Part I, p. 52.

[99] “In the early Cyprian tombs clay models of chariots have been
found; these are modelled with solid wheels; sometimes spokes are
painted on the clay; other models are almost certainly intended to
represent vehicles with block wheels....

“Prof. Tylor figures an ox-waggon carved on the Antonine column. It
appears to have solid wheels, and the square end of the axle proves
that it and its drum wheels turned round together.... Tylor also says
that ancient Roman farm-carts were made with wheels built up of several
pieces of wood nailed together.” (Haddon, _Study of Man_.)

[100] Called by the missionaries “Lake Candidius,” after Father
Candidius, the Dutch missionary explorer, of the seventeenth century,
who discovered it.



“Decadent” or “Primitive”--A Dream of White Saviours from the West.

Whether the Formosan aborigines are a “decadent” people, in the sense
suggested in the last chapter, or whether they are “primitive,” in
the sense that they are at the beginning of what would be a long
racial life--a life with possibilities of intellectual and social
evolution--were they given opportunities for the unhampered development
of that life, is a question that will probably never be answered. No
race, whatever its virility or potentiality for development, can long
survive the military despotism of a conquering people; especially when
that conquering people is consistently ruthless in the methods it
adopts for crushing out the racial individualities of the peoples whom
it conquers.

It seems probable that under the dominance of the Japanese the
aborigines of Formosa will in a few decades, or, at the longest, in a
century or two, have ceased to exist as a people. Unless, indeed, their
dream of being rescued from the rule of both Chinese and Japanese by
“White Saviours from the West” ever come true; and of this there seems
no prospect at the present time. Nor has the white man--if one face
the matter honestly--always proved a “saviour” to the aboriginal races
with whom he has come into contact. As Bertrand Russell has recently
intelligently remarked (_Manchester Guardian Weekly_, Friday, December
2, 1921) apropos of Japan’s policy in China: “Japan has merely been
copying Christian morals.”[101]

The faith of the aboriginal Formosans, however, both in the power
and the goodness of the white man--and white woman--is touching
in the extreme. This does not happen to be due to the efforts of
present-day missionaries, since the efforts of the latter are, as
has been previously stated, confined to attempts at Christianizing
Chinese-Formosans (those who are usually known as “Formosans”). The
reverence among the aborigines for the white race is the result of the
Dutch occupation of three hundred years ago--a tradition which has been
handed down from generation to generation.


[101] It is possible, however, that if Mr. Russell had been in
Korea in March 1919, and had seen the hideous cruelty practised at
that time--cruelty which took the form of peculiarly ingenious and
diabolical modes of torture on the part of Japanese officialdom
towards unarmed Koreans, women and children as well as men--he might
have modified his statement to the extent of saying that present-day
Japan is copying Christian morals of the age of the Inquisition. That
Japan is not a “Christian country” has no bearing on the question,
since Buddhism, quite as much as Christianity, enjoins forbearance and
gentleness, and stresses--as its key-note--“harmlessness.” But the
teachings of Gautama, like those of Christ, have little effect upon
“the direction taken by the criminal tendencies,” as Mr. Russell puts
it, of the nominal followers of these teachings--in Orient or Occident.



To “wonder furiously”--Better Government, or Worse?--Comparison of
Standards--A Conversation with Aborigine Friends--The Question of

Looking back over what I learned, during the two years that I was in
Formosa, of the manners and customs--collectively speaking--of the
aboriginal tribes, and of the outlook on life of these _Naturvölker_, I
am given to “think furiously” along lines other than anthropological;
that is, along those that are sociological as well. Rather, perhaps, to
“wonder furiously.”

If it be true, as Dr. Tylor--in _Primitive Culture_--points out, that
“no human thought is so primitive as to have lost bearing on our own
thought, or so ancient as to have broken connection with our own life,”
it opens up an interesting field for speculation. For one thing, as
to what would have been the line of social evolution of the so-called
superior races had they, like the _seban_, continued to regard the
cutting off of an enemy head as meritorious rather than otherwise. (Yet
what is war between “civilized” races, except head-hunting on a grand
scale; only with accompanying mangling and gassing and other horrors
of which the island _seban_[102] knows nothing?) And if, also like
the _seban_, prostitution had remained unknown, and the breaking of a
promise been regarded as so heinous a crime that only the death of the
one guilty of so foul a thing could save his family and relatives and
all who came into contact with him from being contaminated by his own

What then? One wonders. What sort of civilization would have been
evolved, had culture progressed--as in Europe, for example, in the
matter of learning, of arts, and of sciences--yet had the standards of
right and wrong remained as they are with the primitive folk among whom
I spent two years, and if the fundamental conception of government had
remained the same--that of a matriarchal theocracy, which is yet, in a
sense, communistic.

Were they, too, matriarchal--the “tattooed and woaded, winter-clad
in skins” European forefathers of ours? It is a dangerous thing to
assume a unilineal line of evolution. Because there are evidences of
mother-right[103] having been dominant in certain parts of the world,
or with certain peoples--and of this mother-right still existing in
a few isolated instances--it would be rashly unwise to assume, as a
few writers and speakers have done, that the female of the species
was once the dominant half of the _genus homo_. However, assuming for
the sake of argument--or of phantasy--that matriarchal government was
once universal, until the male learned that in the matter of governing
the power of brute force equalled, in efficacious results, that of
summoning spirits from the vasty deep on the part of priestess and
sibyl, or of ruling the tribe through aruspicy and the cries of birds;
or until he learned, perhaps, that brute force could even make his own
those priestly offices which had been the prerogative of that sex once
solely associated with the Mystic Force (by virtue of that medium still
regarded by primitive folk as sacred and mysterious).[104]

Suppose, I say--and I underscore _suppose_--we assume this
mother-right--matri-potestal as well as matrilineal and
matri-local--once to have existed in Europe in as full force as it
still does in a few islands of the South Pacific; and, again, suppose
the male had never learned, or never chosen to apply, the force of
muscular suasion, what sort of Midsummer’s Night Dream of a world
should we have had? Would it have been an Eden--with Adam kept very
much in his place--a sort of Golden Age, such as many equal-suffrage
advocates assert would be the outcome of matriarchal rule; or would it
have resulted in “confusion worse confounded” (in this year of grace,
1922, is such a state possible to conceive?), such as Weininger[105]
and his school would assert could be the only result of woman-rule?
Or would this school concede that there could be such a thing as a
woman-ruled State? Would it not hold, rather, that such an attempt
could end only in anarchy?

Yet the realm which the women-chiefs and priestesses of Formosa
govern is the reverse of anarchic. Laws there are as the laws of the
Medes and Persians; or as those are supposed to have been. Every
act of daily life, personal as well as communal, is regulated by
law, and any infringement of this law is met with dire penalty.
This--incidentally--holds true with all primitive peoples,
patriarchal as well as matriarchal. Those who fancy that a “return
to nature”--meaning to primitive conditions--would give licence
either for lawlessness or for the indulgence without restraint in
individual preference, social or political, reckon without knowledge
of conditions actually existing in primitive society. One shudders to
think what would have been Rousseau’s fate had he really “returned
to nature”--i.e. lived among the _Naturvölker_--and broken tabu of
marriage or parenthood. For those who hold in contempt established
convention, or life regulated by law, primitive society is not the

But to return to the question of gynarchic rule: All the women of
this particular island--or of that particular part of it still
under aboriginal control and hence matriarchal--are not Sapphos or
Katherines--are not even the primitive prototypes of these illustrious
ladies--any more than they are simpering _Doras_,[106] neurotics, or
nymphomaniacs. As George Eliot made one of her characters, in speaking
of her own sex, remark, “The Lord made ‘em fools to match the men,” so
one is inclined to ask, after having seen the practical working of a
gynocracy, if women were made also good and bad--in the comprehensive
inclusiveness of those words--wise and foolish, to match the so-called
sterner sex; the sex which seems, however, in reality neither sterner
nor more bloodthirsty than the so-called gentler one; any more than
it seems a greater lover of abstract justice, which, according to one
English writer, “no woman understands.”[107]

Which train of wondering brings us back to the original wonder with
which this chapter started: If our European forefathers had ever, in
the dim “once-upon-a-time” of long ago, the same standards of right and
wrong as the present-day _seban_ of Formosa; if they, too, were once
matri-potestal--what would have been the line of evolution that Europe
would have followed had this state of affairs continued, only gradually
evolving, through letters and arts, from savagery to so-called
civilization? Should we have been better governed or worse?

Or--another wonder intervenes. Would letters and arts have ever
developed under a matriarchy? Probably yes. Perhaps even to a greater
extent than has been the case during the long centuries of patriarchal
rule that have followed the possible once-upon-a-time primitive
matriarchates of antiquity. For even recognizing that the creative
faculty--artistic and inventive--is the heritage of man rather than
of woman, has it not, within historic times, in civilized countries,
been ever under queen rulership that letters and art have flourished?
Perhaps an unrecognized, sublimated form of sex-instinct--or so a
certain school of psycho-analysts would argue--that has spurred
masculine creative genius to its highest point; as it spurred,
apparently, the venturous spirit of the great explorers, certainly of
the Elizabethan age; and as, in a later age in England, it spurred
those who dreamed of world conquest in the name of the “Great Good
Queen.” Has personal idolatry rendered to a king ever equalled
that rendered to a queen, whether by soldier or poet, artist or
farm-labourer? The sex instinct here, as in other fields, has played
its part, and in this particular field usually for good rather than
for evil. Perhaps no more Sapphos would have arisen under the rule
of women than of men; but it seems not improbable that more men poets
might have arisen, worthily and lustily to sing the praises of queens.

And the governing--worse governed or better under theocratic queens
than under kings or under mobs? Not worse, I think. Executive ability
seems woman’s in surprising degree where she has had the opportunity
to exercise it; often where the exercise of it has been unrecognized,
because attributed to the male--her man--who stood before the world, or
who sat upon the throne.

As executive and ruler in miniature--executive in the household and
ruler over the children, since house, in any form, has existed or
maternal responsibility, however elementary, been recognized--executive
ability seems to have been developed in women; just as through
child-bearing and rearing--or psycho-physical potentiality for
this--intellectual creative faculty has, with the normal woman,
remained dormant.

So much for wondering over possible might-have-beens in connection with
matriarchal government, if this system in some supposititious long-ago
ever existed in Europe.

As for the general standards of right and wrong--standards as they
exist among the aborigines of Formosa, compared with standards which
exist to-day in Europe: Would it be more agreeable to be in danger
of losing one’s head, if one went for a sunset stroll and ventured
too near enemy territory--provided oneself were not the first to
secure the enemy head--yet to know that a word once given, by friend
or enemy, would never be broken; that no lock would be needed to
guard one’s possessions; that life-insurance had not to be taken into
consideration, because, in case of one’s untimely demise, one’s wife
and children would, as a matter of course, be given equal provender
with the other members of the community; that not only was no special
plea for mercy needed for “fatherless children and widows,” but
that, as a matter of fact, these usually fared somewhat better than
other members of the community, because the widow generally became
a priestess, and as such wielded greater power and influence in the
community than a mere wife could do?

Also to know that fire-insurance might equally be left out of the
reckoning, as in case one’s house were destroyed by fire, all one’s
neighbours could be relied upon to build one a new house.

Would it be more agreeable to know that battle, murder, and sudden
death were ever-present possibilities, if one happened to be a man and
a warrior (and to be one meant being the other), yet to know that while
life lasted it would ever be a merry one; that if by chance old age
or illness overtook one, one would be cared for, not as a matter of
charity, but again--as in the case of widows and orphans--as a matter
of course; or to cower before what old age and illness and out-of-work
days mean for the poverty-stricken in present-day civilization?

To live knowing that death sudden, yet swift and comparatively
painless, might one day be one’s portion--or the portion of one’s
husband--yet ever to be certain, while one lived, of a home as good as
that of any member of the people to whom one belonged; of clothing and
fuel and food in abundance; or to live as the poor in the great cities
of Christian civilization live, and to die as they die; to cry not only
for bread where there is no bread, but for work where there is no work;
in decrepit old age and illness to be cared for by the community, if at
all, as a matter of contemptuous pity,--which were preferable?

I tried once to explain something of economic conditions in the white
man’s world, and in that of modern Japan, to one of my Formosan
aborigine friends. The idea that one should receive more than another,
unless that other had by misconduct forfeited his share, was as
difficult for my friend to understand as it was that a man could not
work who wanted to work, or that there should not be food enough for
all. That it was held to be a matter of shame to be helped by the
community when one was too old or too ill to work was incomprehensible;
as incomprehensible as was the question of prostitution. “But women who
live so, how can they have strong sons and daughters?” he asked. “And
how can they make good priestesses to the people?” an old priestess
who was standing by asked. “Such women destroy faith,” she added, “not
build it up for the guidance of men.”

I thought of the Inari temples--those devoted to the worship of the
Fox-god--and of the votaries of these temples, in Japan. I thought of
the stories of the temples of Babylon, of Egypt, of certain of those
in ancient Greece--all these had represented mighty civilizations; the
votaries of the Fox-god temples belong to a nation that is to-day one
of the great world-powers; while the old Formosan woman was only a
savage. How could she know anything of the refinements of civilization,
or of what civilization demands?

But those ancient civilizations, I reflected--they were “heathen”; even
present-day Japan is “heathen.” As a member of a race that is supposed
to uphold Christian civilization and to convert heathen peoples to its
tenets, there was momentary unction in this thought. Then, as the old
man and old woman stood looking up at me, with inquiring, wrinkled
faces, awaiting an answer to questions that would solve the problem
that was puzzling them, there flashed across my mind the memory of
a Christian temple, in a great Christian capital, which it was the
fashion of the more fashionable stratum of the painted ladies of the
city to attend, and where----

But no, they were not priestesses; only devotees who exchanged glances
with the male devotees, and who after the services spoke with the
latter, doubtless for the “upbuilding of their faith.”

And as for the question of the old man; how could women who lived so
have strong sons and daughters? I thought of all the painted women of
all the great cities of the world--those flaunting their silks and
furs and jewels under the electric glare of the great thoroughfares,
inviting with smiles and glances; and those others, shivering,
wrapping their rags about them in dark corners, croaking, cackling,
and clutching desperately, hoping to earn, in an ancient profession of
civilization, enough to buy food and drink sufficient to keep life a
little longer in unclean, diseased bodies. These women had no children;
but I thought of their male companions; some their victims; some who
had victimized and had started certain of the painted ones in their
profession; some merely the boon companions of an hour. And I thought
of hospitals I had visited; of operations that I had witnessed on
the wives of the men who had “settled down after sowing a few wild
oats”--years of agony in one life as a vicarious atonement for perhaps
one night of wine and laughter and song in the life of another. And I
thought of children I had seen, and of grandchildren.... It made it a
little difficult to explain clearly, to the old man and the old woman,
the benefits of a system inextricably interwoven with civilization,
ancient and modern; and the reason why this system lent a delicate
zest to the art of civilized living. And part of my wonder to-day is:
Supposing, _supposing_, this art--this profession--had never been
introduced into society----?

Almost as difficult to answer as was the question of the reason why of
money-taking in exchange for love were other questions put to me by
aboriginal friends in connection with money. Why money at all? What
were the benefits of this “recognized medium of exchange,” and of the
great banking systems, which are part of the economic fabric of every
civilization of the world. I gave a few coins to some men and women of
the Yami tribe; they began to beat them out into thin plates to add to
their helmets. I gave some to the Ami people; they drilled holes in
them and fastened them, as ornamental buttons, to their blankets. Those
that I gave to the Paiwan they inserted in holes in their ears--all
except one young warrior who set his _ni-ju-sen_[108] piece among the
boars’ tusks that ornamented his cap. The Taiyal priestess to whom I
gave a _go-ju-sen_[109] piece regarded it with reverence, and carefully
wrapped it in a banana-leaf. A short time afterwards I saw her,
sitting by the bedside of a patient, balancing the _go-ju-sen_ on a
bamboo-rod, gripped between her knees; the small stone generally used
on such occasions--mentioned in the chapter ILLNESS AND DEATH--having
been replaced by the shining silver coin.

The Taiyal seemed to think that some particularly powerful _Ottofu_
was connected with silver coins. Perhaps the “White Fathers,” and
also the Chinese and Japanese, used these shining pieces to draw
down the _Ottofu_ of long-departed ancestors; hence had they waxed
mighty. That such _Ottofu_ pieces might be used as media of exchange
between different tribes, when these were not actively at war with
each other--this was comprehensible; but that such should be needed,
or conceivably ever used, between members of the same tribe or
nation--this was not comprehensible. “Surely man does not kill meat for
himself alone, when his brothers, too, are hungry; nor does a woman
grow millet for her own children alone, when the children of other
women are crying for food.”

Nor could I ever quite make my savage friends realize the blessings
of civilization in the matters of the economic system, any more than
of the social. They could only comprehend that among the enlightened
ones of the world it was somehow tabu for one man to have as many
shining pieces as another, or as much meat and drink, as good a house
to shelter him from the wind, or as much fuel to make fire in the rainy
season, as another, that somehow the shining _Ottofu_ pieces brought
these blessings. But just why was it tabu for one man to have more than
another? They were much puzzled, until at last one Taiyal man suggested
that no doubt the White God-descended Ones knew, in their wisdom, which
of their brothers were most worthy, most noble and holy; and to the
most holy was awarded the largest share of the _Ottofu_ pieces.

And still I am wondering what if the speculations of my savage friends
had been correct--what sort of a Europe should I be living in to-day?
How would it contrast with the Europe that is?

When my friends learned of the tabu connected with the shining pieces,
they wished to hear more of the tabus of the Great Ones. Were these the
same as their own: tabus that surrounded young men and maidens, which
prevented the latter from hearing an indelicate word or seeing a coarse
gesture, that prevented the marriage of too near relations, that----

“Yes, yes,” I hurried to assent, “among the better classes all these
tabus are observed.”

“But,” my interlocutors interrupted, “what is meant by classes, and,
if there is more than one class among the same people, why should the
young girls of one class be protected more than those of another?”

Again their intelligence failed to grasp my attempts at a logical
explanation. But a priestess pressed for further knowledge on the
subject of the white man’s--and especially the white woman’s--tabus.
Was it tabu for a husband to be either brutal to his wife---- “Yes,
among the better----” I began. But the priestess hurried on: “or
indelicate in his attentions to her; was she, his wife--as regards
marital relations--to be tabu to him altogether before the birth of her
children, and for some time afterwards? Was a disloyal husband himself
so tabu that, even in the tribes where he was not beheaded or stoned
to death, no self-respecting member of the community--either man or
woman--would speak to him or supply him with food; so that he had to
flee to the woods and live as an outcast?”

I tried to explain that it was difficult to know; one could not be
sure, for there were some points on which neither men nor women always
told the exact truth.

“But not to tell the truth!” my friends cried in chorus. “Surely the
curses of their ancestors are on those who do not speak the truth!”

And I thought, or tried to think, of a civilization--white or
yellow--in which men and women spoke always the truth, with nothing
added, nothing suppressed; where “yea” meant always _yea_, and “nay,”
_nay_; where the realization that anything more “cometh of evil” was
put into practice; consequently the anything more left unsaid. And
still I am trying to think what civilization under these conditions
would mean. Civilization--I am wondering.

Since my sojourn among the men and women who live in the mountains of
Formosa that word--civilization--has had a new meaning; been a new
source of wonder to me.


[102] In this connection I speak of the aborigines of this particular
island--Formosa. Among many of the Melanesian aborigines of other
islands of the South Pacific--as among many tribes of equatorial
Africa, and certain tribes of American Indians--every form of torture
is applied to the vanquished enemy before death releases him from

[103] See _Das Mutterrecht_, by J. J. Bachofen.

[104] On this subject see _Les Formes Élémentaires de la Vie
Religieuse_, by E. Durkheim.

[105] See _Sex and Character_, by Otto Weininger.

[106] The _Dora_ of Dickens’s _David Copperfield_.

[107] See _The Female of the Species_, by Kipling.

[108] A Japanese silver coin, equivalent to about a sixpence in value.

[109] A Japanese coin, equivalent to about a shilling in value.


    characteristics, 95 et seq., 105
    future of, 198 et seq.
    population, 87, 88
    social organisation of, 109 et seq., 125-126
  Aetas, 64, 106
  Agricultural implements, 183, 184
  Ainu of Hokkaido, 177
      Saghalien, 177
  _Aiyu-sen_, 100
  American Indians, 103
  Ami tribe, the, 75, 87, 99, 101, 103, 104
    arts and crafts of, 174, 181, 182
    characteristics of, 76, 211
    customs of, 74, 114, 117, 122, 124, 128, 169, 187
    marriage of, 154-156, 160-162
    religion, 131-133, 151
    traditions of, 96
    transport, 193-195
  Amoy dialect, 87, 103
  Andaman islanders, 107, 126
  Anping, 43, 49, 51
  Arapani, 134
  Archery, 120
  Arizona, 28
  Arts and crafts, 173 et seq.
  Ashikaga dynasty, 44

  “Bachelor-house” system, 122, 123
  Bartsing, 131
  Basketry, 181
  Berri berri, 89
  Botel Tobago, 97, 104, 114, 148, 149, 150, 176, 182
  “Bradyaga,” 55
  British trade, 51
  Bunun tribe, the, 70
    arts and crafts of, 99, 174, 177
    characteristics of, 102, 103
    customs of, 111, 169, 170 et seq.
    marriage, 159
  Bunun religion, 137, 139, 140
  Bureau of Aboriginal Affairs, 101

  Camphor, 31, 70
    factories, 70, 90
    wood, 69
  Candidius, Father, 52, 91, 150, 196
  Caps, 181
  Chastity, 109
  Children, 121, 122
  China, 31, 37, 38, 39, 43, 44, 46, 49, 89
  China grass, 120, 187
  _China Review_, the, 103, 104
  China Sea, 29
    classification of tribes, 104
    coolies, 79
    customs, 169
    dominance of Formosan, 49, 54 et seq.
    expedition to Formosa, 42
    influence in Formosa, 174
    pirates, 45
    population, 86, 87
    records of Formosa, 37 et seq.
    treatment of Aborigines, 88
    under Japanese rule, 54
  Chinese-Formosans, 37, 38, 51, 52, 58 et seq., 69, 88, 101
    dialect, 78
    villages, 74
  _Chin-Huan_, 103, 104, 111, 127, 128, 154
  Circumcision, 192
  Clothing, 113
  Cogett, Governor, 54
  Communal system, 109
  Confucian ethics, 81
  Confucius, sayings of, 58

  Dancing, 113
  “Dead houses,” 168
  Death, 163 et seq.
  Deniker’s _The Races of Man_, 110
  de Valdez, Don Antonio de Careño, 50
  Dgagha, 131
  Divorce, 107
  Dominican Friars, 51
  Dutch, the:
    dominance of, 47 et seq., 90
    education, 91
    exit from Formosa, 54
    first landing of, 47
    influences of, 52, 53, 104, 194, 199
    missionaries, 52, 53, 166
    records, 166
  Dutch East Indies, 54
  Dwelling-houses, 173
  Dyaks of Borneo, 110, 111
  Dyes, 179

  Ear-rings, 178, 186, 187
  Evil omens, 113
  Exogamy, 141, 161

  Filipinos, 95
  Fokien Province, 41, 42, 87
  Foochow, 38
    dialect, 87
  Fort Zelandia, 49, 50

  Game hunting, 119
  Gan Shi-sai, 45
  Garanbi, Cape, 38, 116
  _Geisha_ system, 129
  Giran, 71
  _Go-ju-sen_, 211
  Granaries, 124
  Gravius (Dutch Minister), 52
  Great Daimyos, 44
  Guam, 126
  Gynarchic rule, 204

  _Hachiman_, 44
  Hakkas, 46, 59, 86
  Hamay, 95
  Hawaii, 28
  Head-hunting, 109 et seq.
  “Hoe-culture,” 125
  Holland, 49
  Hong-Kong, 37
  Houi, Mr., 70

  Igorotes, 95, 96
  Illness, customs in, 163 et seq.
  Implements, 183, 184
  Inari temples, 209
  Indonesian origins, 97
  Indoneso-Malay stock, 95
  Iron, 41, 42
  Ishii, Mr., 100, 101, 105

  _Japanese Chronicle_, the, 32
  Japanese classification of tribes, 102 et seq.
    domination of Taruko, 106
    education, 35, 89
    first associations with Formosa, 44, 47
    laws, 118
    officialdom, 36, 58, 62 et seq.
    pirates, 44, 45
    population in Formosa, 87
    tradition, 134
    treatment of Chinese, 89
    treatment of foreigners, 33
    treatment of Formosans, 31, 32, 58, 89, 100, 198
  _Jitsugetsutan_, 196

  Kagoshima, 35, 36
  Kakring, 130 et seq.
  Kalapiat, 130 et seq.
  Karenko, 71, 72
  Keelung, 35, 44, 45, 50, 51, 55, 57, 58, 59, 62, 63, 64, 71, 72
  Kipling, 56
  Kobe, 32
  Koksinga, 45, 54, 88
  Korea, 33, 199
  Kwantung, Province of, 86
  Kyoto, 34

  Ladrone Islands, 126
  Linguistic affinity of tribes, 98
  Linschotten, 46
  Little Lu-chu, 43
  Looms, 179
  Lowie, 125
  Lu-chu Islands, 39, 42, 43, 176, 192
  Luzon (Philippines), 95, 96

  Macao, 49
  Mahayana Buddhism, 34
  Malay language, 99
  Malay origins, 40
  Manila, 29
  Maori skulls, 96
  Marianne Islands, 126
  Marin, Mr., 70
  Marital fidelity, 128
  Marriage, 110, 128, 152 et seq., 190, 191
  Masculine vanity, 186
  Matriarchate, 27, 28
    government by, 201 et seq.
  Matrilineal tribes, 27, 28
  Matrilocal tribes, 27, 28
  Ma Tuan-hui, 40
  _Mavayaiya_, 118, 136
  Melanesia, 176
  Millet, 183
    granaries, 176
    hoe, 179
    wine, 118
  Mindanao, 50
  Ming dynasty, 43, 44
  Missionaries, 31, 36, 65, 73
  Monkeys, 118
  Monogamy, 109, 128
  Moors, the, 50
  Mother-of-pearl, 178
  Mother-right, 109
  Mt. Morrison, 38
  Mt. Sylvia, 38
  Musical instruments, 184
  Mutilation, 86 et seq.

  Nagasaki, 29
  Nevada, 28
  New Mexico, 28
  _Ni-ju-sen_, 211

  Ornaments, 185
  _Ottofu_, 163-165, 168, 183, 212
  Ox-hide, 47, 48
  Paiwan tribe, the, 87, 99, 100, 101
    arts and crafts, 174, 175, 177, 196
    characteristics of, 103, 211
    chieftainship of, 121
    contact with the Chinese, 104
    head-hunting, 102, 111, 119
    marriage, 154, 159
    religion, 134-136, 151
    trading, 128
    traditions, 116
  Papuans, 195
  Patrilocal tribes, 27
  _Pepo-huan_, 103, 104
  Pescadores, 39, 44, 47, 49
  Philippine Islands, 28, 50, 64, 95, 106
  Pigmy people, 106
    women, 107, 108
  Pinan, 71, 73, 74, 133
  _Pithecanthropus_, 28
  Piyuma tribe, the, 99, 100
    arts and crafts, 196
    chieftainship, 121
    customs, 117, 118, 122, 188
    marriage, 154, 160, 161
    religion, 134
  Polynesian skulls, 96
  Portuguese, the, 46, 94
  Pottery, 181 et seq.

  Religion, 130 et seq.
  Reyersz, Admiral Cornelius, 49
  Rice-paddies, 30, 52, 60, 61
  Russell, Bertrand, 199

  Saisett tribe, the, 70, 99, 100, 102
    marriage, 162
    religion, 148
    tattooing, 188
  Sakurajuma, 35
  Salt, 128
  _Samurai_, 63
  San Domingo, 50
  Schetelig, Arnold, 96
  _Seban_, 80, 81, 82, 200, 201
  _Sek-huan_, 74, 103, 104
  Sex, 153 et seq.
  Shimonoseki, treaty of, 87
  _Shin-shu_, 34
  Siam, 43
  Sino-Japanese War, 54, 88
  Smoking, 113
  Solomon Islands, 195
  South China Sea, 29
  Spain, 50, 51
  Sugar, 31
  Sui dynasty, 39, 98
  Sun and Moon Lake, 196
  Suspension-bridges, 177

  Tabu, 161, 183
  Tagalog tribe, 96, 134
  Taihoku, 34, 35, 58, 59, 61, 64, 70
  Tainan, 43, 45, 47, 49
  Taiwan, 29, 43
  Taiyal tribe, the:
    arts and crafts, 173, 184
    characteristics of, 96, 103, 105, 106, 127, 211
    customs, 114, 125, 165, 168, 169, 187
    head-hunting, 111, 112, 115
    marriage, 152, 157, 159, 160
    religion, 139 et seq., 181, 212
    social organization, 120, 124
    tattooing, 160, 161, 188, 191
    transport, 196
  Takao, 51, 71, 72, 74, 104
  Takasago, 45
  Taketon-Monogabari, 134
  Tamsui, 50, 51
  Taruko group, 105
  Tattooing, 111, 112, 188 et seq.
  Taylor, George, 116
  Tea, 31
  Teeth, 187
  Terrace beach, 29, 30
  Theriolatry, 135
  Tobacco, 114
  Totems, 135, 141, 146
  Transport, 193 et seq.
  Tribes, classification of, 103-104
  Tropic of Cancer, 30
  Tsarisen tribe, the, 99, 100
    marriage, 161
    religion, 136, 137
  Tsuou tribe, the, 99
    arts and crafts, 184
    customs, 122, 188
    marriage, 156
    religion, 137-138
    transport, 196
  Tuber-juice, 179
  Tung-Hai, 36
  “Two-Button” officials, 34
  Tyler, Dr., 200

  Van Marwijk, Admiral, 47

  Wallace’s _Malay Archipelago_, 99
  Wan San-ho, 43, 44
  Weapons, 120, 177, 178
  Weaving, 179, 180
  Weininger, Otto, 203
  Wire, 178

  Yami tribe, the, 99
    arts and crafts, 176, 182, 185, 195
    characteristics, 103, 211
    customs, 97, 172, 114
    religion, 148-150
  Yangtsein, Admiral, 42
  _Yoshiwara_, 129
  Yuan dynasty, 42

  _Zen-shu_, 34

_Printed in Great Britain by Hazell, Watson & Viney, Ld., London and



Most people nowadays are collectors in a small way of Autographs,
China, Furniture, Prints, Miniatures, or Silver, and would take up
these fascinating hobbies more extensively, and collect with profit, if
they had a knowledge of the subject.

It is to the beginner and would-be collector that Unwin’s “Chats”
Series of practical handbooks especially appeal. They are the
recognized standard guides to collecting, each volume being the work of
an expert on the subject dealt with.

Each volume is profusely illustrated with carefully-chosen specimens of
the various styles and periods.

Full Indices, Bibliographies, and Lists of Sale Prices at Public
Auctions are included in the volumes.

 “As this is the age of collectors, so it is the age of books for their
 guidance. Mr. Unwin’s series of books for collectors now includes
 twenty-one volumes, and if bargains are missed it is certainly not the
 fault of the various writers.”

      _The Nation._


is the keynote of the series. The phenomenal prices realized at auction
sales are obtained by those who have collected wisely. Prices are
still rising, and those who have the knowledge are buying for future
rises. Ask always for and see that you get UNWIN’S “Chats” Series--the
standard popular handbooks on collecting.

W.C. 2


=Chats on English China.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN. Illustrated with
reproductions of 156 marks and 89 specimens of china.

      Cloth, 15s. net.      Fourth Edition.

This is the standard work on the subject. The volume will enable the
possessors of old china to determine the factories at which their ware
was produced.

 “It gives in a few chapters just what the beginner wants to know about
 the principal varieties of English ware. We can warmly commend the
 book to the china collector.”

      _Pall Mall Gazette._

 “So simply yet so thoroughly written, that it is a sage guide to the
 veriest tyro in china collecting.”


=Chats on Old Furniture.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With a coloured
frontispiece and 104 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 12s. 6d. net.     Fourth Edition.      Eleventh Impression.

 “The hints to collectors are the best and clearest we have seen; so
 that altogether this is a model book of its kind.”


 “A fully illustrated practical guide for collectors.”

      _The Times._

 “Mr. Hayden has worked at his subject on systematic lines, and has
 made his book what it purports to be--a practical guide for the

      _The Saturday Review._

=Chats on Old Prints.= How to Collect and Identify. By ARTHUR HAYDEN.
With a coloured frontispiece and 72 full-page plates.

      Cloth, 15s. net.      Sixth Impression.

Every branch of the subject is carefully and explicitly handled in
this book, and valuable information as to technical processes and
identification of prints is given.

 “If there is a better book of its kind on print collecting we have not
 yet come across it.”

      _Daily Graphic._

 “A very useful handbook for beginners, intended to help any reader of
 artistic tastes, but very moderate means, to collect to good purpose.”

      _The Times._

=Chats on Costume.= By G. WOOLLISCROFT RHEAD, R.E. With a coloured
frontispiece and 117 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Second Impression.

A practical guide to historic dress. “Clothes” is a subject that has
been neglected by collectors, and this book will be a useful guide to
those who desire to repair that neglect by forming a collection.

 “A book that is at once the work of an authority on the subject of
 costumes, and one that helps to enlarge our range of selection.”

      _Pall Mall Gazette._

=Chats on Old Miniatures.= By J. J. FOSTER, F.S.A. With a coloured
frontispiece and 116 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.

This book presents in a concise and popular form a variety of valuable
information on the collection and preservation of miniatures, on the
leading English and French artists, and on the specimens exhibited in
public galleries.

 “Mr. Foster is truly a guide, philosopher and friend. He tells us
 not only how to judge and how to buy miniatures, but how to take
 proper care of them.... The splendid photographs by which the book is
 enriched adds in a great measure to its attractiveness and utility.”

      _Aberdeen Free Press._

=Chats on Old Lace and Needlework.= By MRS. LOWES. With a frontispiece
and 74 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Third Impression.

Written by an expert and enthusiast in these most interesting branches
of art. The low price at which the work is issued is exceptional in
dealing with these subjects, and it is remarkable in view of the
technical knowledge displayed and the many photographic illustrations
which practically interleave the book.

 “In commendable, clear and concise style Mrs. Lowes explains the
 technical features distinguishing each example, making the book the
 utmost value in identifying samples of old lace.”

      _Weldon’s Ladies’ Jour._

=Chats on Oriental China.= By J. F. BLACKER. With a coloured
frontispiece and 70 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Fourth Impression.

Will be of the utmost service to collectors and to all who may have
old Chinese and Japanese porcelain in their possession. It deals with
oriental china from the various standpoints of history, technique,
age, marks and values, and is richly illustrated with admirable

 “A treatise that is so informing and comprehensive that it commands
 the prompt recognisation of all who value the choice productions of
 the oriental artists.... The illustrations are numerous and invaluable
 to the attainment of expert knowledge, and the result is a handbook
 that is as indispensable as it is unique.”

      _Pall Mall Gazette._

=Chats on English Earthenware.= A companion volume to “Chats on
English China.” By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With a coloured frontispiece, 150
Illustrations and tables of over 200 illustrated marks.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Third Impression.

 “To the ever-increasing number of collectors who are taking an
 interest in old English pottery ... will be found one of the most
 delightful, as it is a practical work on a fascinating subject.”

      _Hearth and Home._

 “Here we have a handbook, written by a well-known authority, which
 gives in the concisest possible form all the information that the
 beginner in earthenware collecting is likely to need. Moreover,
 it contains one or two features that are not usually found in the
 multifarious ‘guides’ that are produced to-day.”


=Chats on Autographs.= By A. M. BROADLEY. With 130 Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.

 “Being an expert collector, Mr. Broadley not only discourses on the
 kinds of autograph he owns, but gives some excellent cautionary advice
 and a valuable ‘caveat emptor’ chapter for the benefit of other

      _Westminster Gazette._

 “It is assuredly the best work of the kind yet given to the public;
 and supplies the intending collector with the various sources of
 information necessary to his equipment.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

=Chats on Old Pewter.= By H. J. L. J. MASSÉ, M.A. With 52 half-tone and
numerous other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Second Impression.

 “It is a remarkably thorough and well-arranged guide to the subject,
 supplied with useful illustrations and with lists of pewterers and of
 their marks so complete as to make it a very complete and satisfactory
 book of reference.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

 “Before setting out to collect old pewter it would be as well to read
 Mr. Massé’s book, which is exhaustive in its information and its lists
 of pewterers, analytical index, and historical and technical chapters.”


=Chats on Postage Stamps.= By FRED J. MELVILLE. With 57 half-tone and
17 line Illustrations.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Second Impression.

 “The whole book, with its numerous illustrations of excellent quality,
 is a _vade mecum_ for stamp collectors, even though their efforts
 may be but modest; we congratulate Mr. Melville on a remarkably good
 guide, which makes fascinating reading.”


 “There is no doubt that Mr. Melville’s book fills a void. There is
 nothing exactly like it. Agreeably written in a popular style and
 adequately illustrated, it is certainly one of the best guides to
 philatelic knowledge that have yet been published.”


=Chats on Old Jewellery and Trinkets.= By MACIVER PERCIVAL. With nearly
300 Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.

 “The book is very thorough, dealing as it does with classic, antique
 and modern ornaments; with gold, silver, steel and pinchbeck; with the
 precious stones, the commoner stones and imitation.”


 “‘Chats on Old Jewellery and Trinkets’ is a book which will enable
 every woman to turn over her jewel-case with a fresh interest and
 a new intelligence; a practical guide for the humble but anxious
 collector.... A good glossary of technicalities and many excellent
 illustrations complete a valuable contribution to collector’s lore.”

      _Illustrated London News._

=Chats on Cottage and Farmhouse Furniture.= A companion volume
to “Chats on Old Furniture.” By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With a coloured
frontispiece and 75 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 15s. net.      Third Impression.

 “One gets very much for one’s money in this book. Seventy-three
 full-page illustrations in half-tone embellish a letterpress which is
 replete with wise description and valuable hints.”

      _Vanity Fair._

 “Mr. Hayden’s book is a guide to all sorts of desirable and simple
 furniture, from Stuart to Georgian, and it is a delight to read as
 well as a sure help to selection.”

  _Pall Mall Gazette._

 “Mr. Hayden writes lucidly and is careful and accurate in his
 statements; while the advice he gives to collectors is both sound and

      _Westminster Gazette._

=Chats on Old Coins.= By FRED W. BURGESS. With a coloured frontispiece
and 258 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Second Impression.

 “A most useful and instructive book ... will prove a boon to the
 intending collector of old coins and tokens, and full of interest to
 every collector. As was to be expected of any volume of this series,
 the illustrations are numerous and good, and greatly assist the reader
 to grasp the essentials of the author’s descriptions.”


 “The author has not only produced ‘a practical guide for the
 collector’ but a handy book of reference for all. The volume is
 wonderfully cheap.”

      _Notes and Queries._

=Chats on Old Copper and Brass.= By FRED W. BURGESS. With a coloured
frontispiece and 86 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.

 “Mr. F. W. Burgess is an expert on old copper and bronze, and in
 his book there is little information lacking which the most ardent
 collector might want.”

      _The Observer._

 “Italian bronzes, African charms, Chinese and Japanese enamels, bells,
 mortars, Indian idols, dials, candlesticks, and snuff boxes, all come
 in for their share of attention, and the reader who has mastered Mr.
 Burgess’s pages can face his rival in the auction-room or the dealer
 in his shop with little fear of suffering by the transaction.”

      _The Nation._

=Chats on Household Curios.= By FRED W. BURGESS. With 94 Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.

 “Mr. Burgess gives much information about such attractive antiques
 as old glass and enamels, old leather work, old clocks and watches,
 old pipes, old seals, musical instruments, and even old samplers and
 children’s toys. The book is, in short, an excellent and comprehensive
 guide for what one may call the general collector, that is, the
 collector who does not confine himself to one class of antique, but
 buys whatever he comes across in the curio line, provided that it is
 interesting and at moderate price.”

      _Aberdeen Free Press._

=Chats on Japanese Prints.= By ARTHUR DAVISON FICKE. With a coloured
frontispiece and 56 Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.      Third Impression.

 “Mr. Ficke writes with the knowledge of the expert, and his history
 of Japanese printing from very early times and his criticism of the
 artists’ work are wonderfully interesting.”


 “This is one of the most delightful and notable members of an
 attractive series.... A beginner who shall have mastered and made
 thoroughly his own the beauty of line and the various subtlety and
 boldness of linear composition displayed in these sixty and odd
 photographs will have no mean foundation for further study.”

      _Notes and Queries._

=Chats on Old Clocks.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With a frontispiece and 80
Illustrations. 2nd Ed.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.

 “A practical handbook dealing with the examples of old clocks likely
 to come under the observation of the collector. Charmingly written and


 “One specially useful feature of the work is the prominence Mr. Hayden
 has given to the makers of clocks, dealing not only with those of
 London, but also those of the leading provincial towns. The lists
 he gives of the latter are highly valuable, as they are not to be
 found in any similar book. The volume is, as usual with this series,
 profusely illustrated, and may be recommended as a highly interesting
 and useful general guide to collectors of clocks.”

      _The Connoisseur._

=Chats on Old Silver.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With a frontispiece, 99
full-page Illustrations, and illustrated table of marks.

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.      Third Impression.

 “Mr. Hayden’s ‘Chats on Old Silver’ deals very thoroughly with
 a popular branch of collecting. There are a hundred full-page
 illustrations together with illustrated tables and charts, and the
 student of this book can wander round the old curiosity shops of these
 islands with a valuable equipment of knowledge.... Altogether we have
 here a well-written summary of everything that one could wish to know
 about this branch of collecting.”

      _The Sphere._

 “The information it gives will be of exceptional value at this time,
 when so many families will be forced to part with their treasures--and
 old silver is among the most precious possessions of the present day.”

      _Morning Post._

=Chats on Military Curios.= By STANLEY C. JOHNSON, M.A., D.Sc. With a
coloured frontispiece and 79 other Illustrations.

      Cloth, 6s. net.

 “Mr. Johnson in this book describes many of the articles a collector
 should be on the look out for, giving short but informative notes on
 medals, helmet and cap badges, tunic buttons, armour, weapons of all
 kinds, medallions, autographs, original documents relating to Army
 work, military pictures and prints, newspaper cuttings, obsolete
 uniforms, crests, stamps, postmarks, memorial brasses, money and
 curios made by prisoners of war, while there is also an excellent
 biography on the subject. The author has, indeed, presented the reader
 with a capital working handbook, which should prove a friendly and
 reliable guide when he goes collecting.”


=Chats on Royal Copenhagen Porcelain.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With a
frontispiece, 56 full-page Illustrations and illustrated tables of

      Cloth, 10s. 6d. net.

 “This very beautiful and very valuable book will be eagerly welcomed
 by lovers of porcelain.... Mr. Hayden describes with great skill and
 preciseness all the quality and beauty of technique in which this
 porcelain excels; he loves it and understands it, and the examples
 he has chosen as illustrations are a valuable supplement to his


=Chats on Old Sheffield Plate.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN. With frontispiece and
58 full-page Illustrations, together with makers’ marks.

      Cloth, 21s. net.

Old plated ware has, by reason of its artistic excellence and its
technique, deservedly won favour with collectors. The art of making
plated ware, which originated at Sheffield (hence the name “Sheffield
plate”), was continued at Birmingham and London, where a considerable
amount of “old Sheffield plate” was made, in the manner of its first
inventors, by welding sheets of silver upon copper. The manufacture
lasted roughly a hundred years. Its best period was from 1776 (American
Declaration of Independence) to 1830 (Accession of William IV). The
author shows reasons why this old Sheffield plate should be collected,
and the volume is illustrated with many examples giving various
styles and the development of the art, together with makers’ marks.
Candlesticks and candelabra, tea-caddies, sugar-baskets, salt-cellars,
tea-pots, coffee-pots, salvers, spoons, and many other articles shown
and described in the volume indicate the exquisite craftsmanship of
the best period. The work stands as a companion volume to the author’s
“Chats on Old Silver,” the standard practical guide to old English
silver collecting.

=Bye Paths in Curio Collecting.= By ARTHUR HAYDEN, Author of “Chats on
Old Silver,” etc. With a frontispiece and 72 full-page Illustrations.

      Cloth, 21s. net.      Second Impression.

 “Every collector knows the name of Mr. Arthur Hayden, and knows him
 for a wise counsellor. Upon old furniture, old china, old pottery, and
 old prints there is no more knowing judge in the country; and in his
 latest volume he supplies a notable need, in the shape of a vade-mecum
 exploring some of the nondescript and little traversed bye-paths of
 the collector. There was never a time when the amateur of the antique
 stood more in need of a competent guide.... The man who wishes to
 avoid the pitfalls of the fraudulent will find much salutary advice in
 Mr. Hayden’s gossipy pages. There are chests, for example, a fruitful
 field for reproduction. Mr. Hayden gives photographs of many exquisite
 examples. There is a marriage coffer of the sixteenth century,
 decorated with carved figures of Cupid and Hymen, a fine Gothic chest
 of the fifteenth century, with rich foliated decorations; and a superb
 livery cupboard from Haddon Hall. From Flanders come steel coffers,
 with a lock of four bolts, the heavy sides strongly braized together.
 Then there are snuffers, with and without trays, tinder-boxes, snuff
 graters, and metal tobacco stoppers. The most fascinating designs are
 shown, with squirrels, dogs, and quaint human figures at the summit.
 Fans and playing-cards provide another attractive section.

    Chicken-skin, delicate, white,
    Painted by Carlo van Loo.
 The fan has always been an object of the collector’s passion, because
 of the grace of the article and its beauty as a display. Mr. Hayden
 shows a particularly beautiful one, with designs after Fragonard, the
 sticks of ivory with jewelled studs. Then there are watch-stands, a
 little baroque in design, and table-bells, some of them shaped as
 female figures with spreading skirts, old toys and picture-books, and,
 of course, cradles, of which every English farm-house once boasted its
 local variety. Altogether the book abounds in inviting pictures and
 curious information, and is certain of a large, appreciative public.”

      _Daily Telegraph._

=The Fan Book:= Including Special Chapters on European Fans of the
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. By MACIVER PERCIVAL, author of
“Chats on Old Jewellery and Trinkets.” Fully Illustrated.

      Demy 8vo, cloth, 21s. net.




  Crown 8vo. Cloth, 4/6 net.      Fortieth Impression.
  Also a Pocket edition.      Fcap. 8vo, cloth, 4/6 net.

 “Of the Canadian disciples of Kipling, by far the best is R. W.
 Service. His ‘Songs of a Sourdough’ have run through many editions.
 Much of his verse has a touch of real originality, conveying as it
 does a just impression of the something evil and askew in the strange,
 uncouth wilderness of the High North.”

      _The Times._

 “Mr. Service has got nearer to the heart of the old-time place miner
 than any other verse-maker in all the length and height of the
 Dominion.... He certainly sees the Northern Wilderness through the
 eyes of the man into whose soul it is entered.”

      _Morning Post._


  Crown 8vo. Cloth, 4/6 net.      Sixth Impression.
  Also a Pocket edition.      Fcap. 8vo, cloth, 4/6 net.

 “It is the great merit of Mr. Service’s verses that they are literally
 alive with the stress and joy and agony and hardship that make up life
 out in the battle zone. He has never written better than in this book,
 and that is saying a great deal.”


 “Mr. Service has painted for us the unutterable tragedy of the war,
 the horror, the waste, and the suffering, but side by side with that
 he has set the heroism, the endurance, the unfailing cheerfulness and
 the unquenchable laughter.”

      _Scots Pictorial._


  Crown 8vo. Cloth, 4/6 net.      Fourteenth Impression.
  Also a Pocket edition.      Fcap. 8vo, Cloth, 4/6 net.

 “It is to men like Mr. Service that we must look for really original
 verse nowadays; to the men on the frontiers of the world. ‘Ballads of
 a Cheechako’ is magnificent.”

      _Oxford Magazine._

 “All are interesting, arresting, and worth reading in their own
 setting for their own sakes. They are full of life and fire and
 muscularity, like the strenuous and devil-may-care fight of a life
 they describe.”



  Crown 8vo. Cloth, 4/6 net.      Fifteenth Impression.
  Also a Pocket edition.      Fcap. 8vo, Cloth, 4/6 net.

 “There is real rollicking fun in some of the rhymed stories, and
 some sound philosophy in the shorter serious poems which shows that
 Mr. Service is as many steps above the ordinary lesser poets in his
 thought as he is in his accomplishments.”


 “Mr. Robert Service is, we suppose, one of the most popular
 verse-writers in the world. His swinging measures, his robust ballads
 of the outposts, his joy of living have fairly caught the ear of his



  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Second Impression.

The poems are striking pen-pictures of life as it is lived by those
men of the English-speaking races whose lot is cast in the sun-bathed
countries of Latin-America. Mr. Atkin’s verses will reach the hearts
of all who feel the call of the wanderlust, and, having shared their
pleasures and hardships, his poems will vividly recall to “old-timers”
bygone memories of days spent in the Land of the Coconut Tree.


  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Third Impression.

Composed on the familiar metre of “Hiawatha,” “The Song of Tiadatha”
(Tired Arthur), an extravaganza written in the highest spirits,
nevertheless is an epic of the war. It typifies what innumerable
soldiers have seen and done and the manner in which they took it.

 “This song of Tiadatha is nothing less than a little English epic of
 the war.”

      _The Morning Post._

 “Every Army officer and ex-officer will hail Tiadatha as a brother.
 ‘The Song of Tiadatha’ is one of the happiest skits born of the war.”

      _Evening Standard._

SONGS OUT OF EXILE: Being Verses of African Sunshine and Shadow and
Black Man’s Twilight. By CULLEN GOULDSBURY.

  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Fourth Impression.

 “The ‘Rhodesian Rhymes’ won for their author the journalistic title of
 ‘The Kipling of South Africa,’ and indeed his work is full of crisp
 vigour, fire and colour. It is brutal in parts; but its brutality is
 strong and realistic. Mr. Gouldsbury has spent many years in Rhodesia,
 and its life, black and white, is thoroughly familiar to him.... Mr.
 Gouldsbury is undoubtedly a writer to be reckoned with. His verse is
 informed by knowledge of wild life in open places and a measure of
 genuine feeling which make it real poetry.”--_Standard._


  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Third Impression.

 “Mr. Cullen Gouldsbury’s collections of his verses are always welcome,
 and the last, ‘From the Outposts’ is as good as its predecessor. No
 one has quite Mr. Gouldsbury’s experience and gift.”


 “It has been well said that Mr. Gouldsbury has done for the white man
 in Africa what Adam Lindsay Gordon in a measure accomplished for the
 Commonwealth and Kipling triumphantly for the British race, and he
 certainly is good to read.”


THE HELL-GATE OF SOISSONS and other Poems. (“The Song of the Guns.”) By

  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Fifth Impression.

 “A singular gift for expressing in verse the facts, the heroism, even
 the humours of war; and in some cases voices its ideals with real

      _The Times._

 “Mr. Kaufman has undoubtedly given us a book worthy of the great hour
 that has brought it forth. He is a poet with a martial spirit and a
 deep, manly voice.”

      _Daily Mail._


  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Second Impression.

 “Mr. E. C. Adams (Adamu) is a singer of Nigeria, and it can safely
 be said he has few, if any, rivals. There is something in these
 illustrations of Nigerian life akin to the style of Kipling and
 Service. The heart of the wanderer and adventurer is revealed, and in
 particular that spirit of longing which comes to all ... who have gone
 out to the far-lands of the world.”

      _Dundee Advertiser._


  Cloth, 4/6 net.

In America Mr. Guest is an extraordinarily popular writer of verses,
though this is his first introduction in book form to the British
public. He brims over with sound sense and tonic cheeriness. He
is keenly sensible of the humour of domestic life, but is deeply
sympathetic with the associations which combine in the word “Home.”
Hence he is read by women with amusement and pleasure. During the war
his poem, “Said the Workman to the Soldier,” circulated by the hundred
thousand. Like Béranger and all successful poets, he is essentially
lyrical; that is to say, there is tune and swing in all his verses.



      Cloth, 5/- net.

 “We have no hesitation in placing the name of Richard Middleton beside
 the names of all that galaxy of poets that made the later Victorian
 era the most brilliant in poetry that England had known since the

      _Westminster Review._


      Cloth, 5/- net.

 “Their beauty is undeniable and often of extraordinary delicacy for
 Middleton had a mastery of craftmanship such as is usually given to
 men of a far wider imaginative experience.”

      _Poetry Review._

 “Among the ‘Poems and Songs’ of Richard Middleton are to be found some
 of the finest of contemporary lyrics.”

      _Country Life._




      Cloth, 4/6 net.

 “Mr. Kaufman’s work possesses in a high degree the qualities of
 sincerity and truth, and it therefore never fails to move the
 reader.... This volume, in short, is the work of a genuine poet and

      _Aberdeen Free Press._

 “A versifier of great virility and power.”

      _Review of Reviews._


POEMS. By W. B. YEATS. Second edition. Large Crown 8vo, Cloth, 10/6 net.

      Ninth Impression.

 “Love songs, faery themes, moods of meditation, scenes of legendary
 wonder ... is it possible that they should become so infinitely
 thrilling, touching, haunting in their fresh treatment, as though they
 had never been, or poets had never turned to them? In this poet’s
 hands they do so become. Mr. Yeats has given us a new thrill of
 delight, a new experience of beauty.”

      _Daily Chronicle._



      Paper cover, 2/- net.


      Paper cover, 1/6 net.


      Cloth, 4/6 net.

 “Before the war Mr. Stead was known to Canadians as ‘The Poet of the
 Prairies.’ He must now be ranked as a ‘Poet of the Empire.’ ... There
 is a strength, a beauty, a restrained passion in his war verses which
 prove his ability to penetrate into the heart of things such as very
 few of our war poets have exhibited.”--_Daily Express._


      Cloth, 4/- net.

 “Among the younger poets Mr. Seymour is distinguished by his delicacy
 of technique. ‘Swords and Flutes’ is a book of grave and tender beauty
 expressed in lucent thought and jewelled words. ‘The Ambush’ is a
 lyric of mastery and fascination, alike in conception and rhythm,
 which should be included in any representative anthology of Georgian

      _Daily Express._



Literal Reproductions of the Old Text. With Photogravure Frontispieces.
Thin Paper edition. School Edition, Boards, 3/-net; Cloth, 5/-net;
Leather, 7/6 net each volume.

 Marlowe. THE BEST PLAYS OF CHRISTOPHER MARLOWE. Edited, with Critical
   Memoir and Notes, by Havelock Ellis; and containing a General
   Introduction to the Series by John Addington Symonds.

 Otway. THE BEST PLAYS OF THOMAS OTWAY. Introduction and Notes by the
   Hon. Roden Noel.

 Ford. THE BEST PLAYS OF JOHN FORD. Edited by Havelock Ellis.

 Massinger. THE BEST PLAYS OF PHILLIP MASSINGER. With Critical and
   Biographical Essay and Notes by Arthur Symons.

 Heywood (T.). THE BEST PLAYS OF THOMAS HEYWOOD. Edited by A. W.
   Verity. With Introduction by J. A. Symonds.

   Introduction and Notes, by W. C. Ward.

 NERO AND OTHER PLAYS. Edited by H. P. Horne, Arthur Symons, A. W.
   Verity and H. Ellis.

   Notes by J. St. Loe Strachey. 2 vols.


   Introduction and Notes by John Addington Symonds.

   Introduction by Algernon Charles Swinburne. 2 vols.

 Shirley. THE BEST PLAYS OF JAMES SHIRLEY. With Introduction by Edmund

 Dekker. THE BEST PLAYS OF THOMAS DEKKER. Notes by Ernest Rhys.

   Introduction and Notes, by G. A. Aitken.

 Jonson. THE BEST PLAYS OF BEN JONSON. Edited, with Introduction and
   Notes, by Brinsley Nicholson and C. H. Herford. 2 vols.

 Chapman. THE BEST PLAYS OF GEORGE CHAPMAN. Edited by William Lyon

   Introduction and Notes, by A. E. H. Swain.

 Shadwell. THE BEST PLAYS OF THOMAS SHADWELL. Edited by George

 Dryden. THE BEST PLAYS OF JOHN DRYDEN. Edited by George Saintsbury. 2

 Farquhar. THE BEST PLAYS OF GEORGE FARQUHAR. Edited, and with an
   Introduction, by William Archer.

 Greene. THE COMPLETE PLAYS OF ROBERT GREENE. Edited, with Introduction
   and Notes, by Thomas H. Dickinson.



When in 1906 Mr. Fisher Unwin commissioned the late Major Martin
Hume to prepare a series of volumes by experts on the South American
Republics, but little interest had been taken in the country as a
possible field for commercial development. The chief reasons for this
were ignorance as to the trade conditions and the varied resources
of the country, and the general unrest and instability of most of
the governments. With the coming of the South American Series of
handbooks the financial world began to realize the importance of the
country, and, with more settled conditions, began in earnest to develop
the remarkable natural resources which awaited outside enterprise.
Undoubtedly the most informative books on the various Republics are
those included in THE SOUTH AMERICAN SERIES, each of which is the work
of a recognized authority on his subject.

 “The output of books upon Latin America has in recent years been very
 large, a proof doubtless of the increasing interest that is felt
 in the subject. Of these the ‘South American Series’ is the most

      _The Times._

 “When the ‘South American Series’ is completed, those who take
 interest in Latin-American affairs will have an invaluable
 encyclopædia at their disposal.”

      _Westminster Gazette._

 “Mr. Unwin’s ‘South American Series’ of books are of special interest
 and value to the capitalist and trader.”--_Chamber of Commerce

Full particulars of the volumes in the “South American Series,” also of
other interesting books on South America, will be found in the pages


1 =Chile.= By G. F. SCOTT ELLIOTT, M.A., F.R.G.S. With an Introduction
by MARTIN HUME, a Map and 39 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 21/- net.      Sixth Impression.

 “An exhaustive, interesting account, not only of the turbulent history
 of this country, but of the present conditions and seeming prospects.”

      _Westminster Gazette._

2 =Peru.= By C. REGINALD ENOCK, F.R.G.S. With an Introduction by MARTIN
HUME, a Map and 64 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 18/- net.      Fifth Impression.

 “An important work.... The writer possesses a quick eye and a keen
 intelligence; is many-sided in his interests, and on certain subjects
 speaks as an expert. The volume deals fully with the development of
 the country.”

      _The Times._

3 =Mexico.= By C. REGINALD ENOCK, F.R.G.S. With an Introduction by
MARTIN HUME, a Map and 64 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Fifth Impression.

 “The book is most comprehensive; the history, politics, topography,
 industries, resources and possibilities being most ably discussed.”

      _The Financial News._

4 =Argentina.= By W. A. HIRST. With an Introduction by MARTIN HUME, a
Map and 64 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/-net.      Fifth Impression.

 “The best and most comprehensive of recent works on the greatest and
 most progressive of the Republics of South America.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

5 =Brazil.= By PIERRE DENIS. Translated, and with an Historical Chapter
by BERNARD MIALL. With a Supplementary Chapter by DAWSON A. VINDIN, a
Map and 36 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Fourth Impression.

 “Altogether the book is full of information, which shows the author to
 have made a most careful study of the country.”--_Westminster Gazette._

6 =Uruguay.= By W. H. KOEBEL. With a Map and 55 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/-net.      Third Impression.

 “Mr. Koebel has given us an expert’s diagnosis of the present
 condition of Uruguay. Glossing over nothing, exaggerating nothing, he
 has prepared a document of the deepest interest.”

      _Evening Standard._

7 =Guiana.= British, French and Dutch. By JAMES RODWAY. With a Map and
32 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Second Impression.

 “Mr. Rodway’s work is a storehouse of information, historical,
 economical and sociological.”

      _The Times._

8 =Venezuela.= By LEONARD V. DALTON, F.G.S., F.R.G.S. With a Map and 45

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Third Impression.

 “An exhaustive and valuable survey of its geography, geology, history,
 botany, zoology and anthropology, and of its commercial possibilities
 in the near future.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

9 =Latin America:= Its Rise and Progress. By F. GARCIA-CALDERON. With a
Preface by RAYMOND POINCARÉ, President of the French Republic. With a
Map and 34 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/-net.      Sixth Impression.

President Poincaré, in a striking preface to this book, says: “Here is
a book that should be read and digested by every one interested in the
future of the Latin genius.”

10 =Colombia=. By PHANOR JAMES EDER, A.B., LL.B. With 2 Maps and 40

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Fifth Impression.

 “Mr. Eder’s valuable work should do much to encourage investment,
 travel and trade in one of the least-known and most promising of the
 countries of the New World.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

11 =Ecuador.= By C. REGINALD ENOCK, F.R.G.S. With 2 Maps and 37

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Second Impression.

 “Mr. Enock’s very thorough and exhaustive volume should help British
 investors to take their part in promoting its development. He has
 studied and described the country in all its aspects.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

12 =Bolivia.= By PAUL WALLE. With 4 Maps and 59 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 18/- net.      Second Impression.

Bolivia is a veritable El Dorado, requiring only capital and enterprise
to become one of the wealthiest States of America. This volume is the
result of a careful investigation made on behalf of the French Ministry
of Commerce.

13 =Paraguay.= By W. H. KOEBEL. With a Map and 32 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Second Impression.

 “Gives a great deal of serious and useful information about the
 possibilities of the country for the emigrant, the investor and
 the tourist, concurrently with a vivid and literary account of its


14 =Central America=: Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Honduras,
Panama and Salvador. By W. H. KOEBEL. With a Map and 25 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 15/- net.      Second Impression.

 “We strongly recommend this volume, not only to merchants looking
 ahead for new openings for trade, but also to all who wish for an
 accurate and interesting account of an almost unknown world.”

      _Saturday Review._


=Spanish America:= Its Romance, Reality and Future. By C. R. ENOCK,
Author of “The Andes and the Amazon,” “Peru,” “Mexico,” “Ecuador.”
Illustrated and with a Map. 2 vols.

      Cloth, 30/- net the set.

Starting with the various States of Central America, Mr. Enock then
describes ancient and modern Mexico, then takes the reader successively
along the Pacific Coast, the Cordillera of the Andes, enters the land
of the Spanish Main, conducts the reader along the Amazon Valley, gives
a special chapter to Brazil and another to the River Plate and Pampas.
Thus all the States of Central and South America are covered. The work
is topographical, descriptive and historical; it describes the people
and the cities, the flora and fauna, the varied resources of South
America, its trade, railways, its characteristics generally.

=South America:= An Industrial and Commercial Field. By W. H. KOEBEL.

  Cloth, 18/- net.      Second Impression.

 “The book considers such questions as South American commerce,
 British interests in the various Republics, international relations
 and trade, communications, the tendency of enterprise, industries,
 etc. Two chapters devoted to the needs of the continent will be of
 especial interest to manufacturers and merchants, giving as they do
 valuable hints as to the various goods required, while the chapter on
 merchandise and commercial travellers affords some sound and practical

      _Chamber of Commerce Journal._

=Vagabonding down the Andes.= By HARRY A. FRANCK, author of “A Vagabond
Journey Round the World,” etc. With a Map and 176 Illustrations.

  Cloth, 25/- net.      Second Impression.

 “The book is a brilliant record of adventurous travel among strange
 scenes and with even more strange companions, and vividly illustrates,
 by its graphic text and its admirable photographs, the real conditions
 of life in the backwood regions of South America.”

      _Manchester Guardian._

 “Mr. Franck is to be congratulated on having produced a readable and
 even fascinating book. His journey lay over countries in which an
 increasing interest is being felt. Practically speaking, he may be
 said to have started from Panama, wandered through Colombia, spending
 some time at Bogota, and then going on to Ecuador, of which Quito is
 the centre. Next he traversed the fascinating country of the Incas,
 from the borders of which he entered Bolivia, going right across that
 country till he approached Brazil. He passed through Paraguay, cut
 through a corner of the Argentine to Uruguay, and so to the River
 Plata and the now well-known town of Buenos Ayres.”

      _Country Life._

=In the Wilds of South America:= Six Years of Exploration in Colombia,
Venezuela, British Guiana, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, Paraguay and
Brazil. By LEO E. MILLER, of the American Museum of Natural History.
With 48 Full-page Illustrations and with Maps. Cloth, 21/-net.

This volume represents a series of almost continuous explorations
hardly ever paralleled in the huge areas traversed. The author is a
distinguished field naturalist--one of those who accompanied Colonel
Roosevelt on his famous South American expedition--and his first object
in his wanderings over 150,000 miles of territory was the observation
of wild life; but hardly second was that of exploration. The result is
a wonderfully informative, impressive and often thrilling narrative
in which savage peoples and all but unknown animals largely figure,
which forms an infinitely readable book and one of rare value for
geographers, naturalists and other scientific men.

=The Putumayo: The Devil’s Paradise.= Travels in the Peruvian Amazon
Region and an Account of the Atrocities committed upon the Indians
therein. By E. W. HARDENBURG, C.E. Edited and with an Introduction by
C. REGINALD ENOCK, F.R.G.S. With a Map and 16 Illustrations.

  Demy 8vo, Cloth, 10/6 net.      Second Impression.

 “The author gives us one of the most terrible pages in the history of

      _Daily Chronicle._

=Tramping through Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras.= By HARRY A. FRANCK.
With a Map and 88 Illustrations.

      Cloth, 7/6 net.

 “Mr. Harry Franck is a renowned vagabond with a gift for vivid
 description.... His record is well illustrated and he tells his story
 in an attractive manner, his descriptions of scenery being so well
 done that one feels almost inclined to risk one’s life in a wild race
 dwelling in a land of lurid beauty.”

      _Liverpool Mercury._

 “Mr. Franck has combined with an enthralling and amusing personal
 narrative a very vivid and searching picture, topographical and
 social, of a region of much political and economic interest.”

      _Glasgow Herald._

=Mexico= (STORY OF THE NATIONS). By SUSAN HALE. With Maps and 47 Illus.

  Cloth, 7/6 net.      Third Impression.

 “This is an attractive book. There is a fascination about Mexico which
 is all but irresistible.... The authoress writes with considerable
 descriptive power, and all through the stirring narrative never
 permits us to lose sight of natural surroundings.”

      _Dublin Review._

=Things as they are in Panama.= By HARRY A. FRANCK. With 50

      Cloth, 7/6 net.

 “Mr. Franck writes from personal knowledge, fortified by the aptitude
 of a practical and shrewd observer with a sense of humour, and the
 result is a word-picture of unusual vividness.”


 “A sparkling narrative which leaves one wondering again why the
 general reader favours modern fiction so much when it is possible to
 get such vivacious yarns as this about strange men and their ways in a
 romantic corner of the tropics.”

      _Daily Mail._

=The Spell of the Tropics.= POEMS. By RANDOLPH H. ATKIN.

  Cloth, 4/6 net.      Second Impression.

The author has travelled extensively in Central and South America,
and has strongly felt the spell of those tropic lands, with all their
splendour and romance, and yet about which so little is known. The
poems are striking pen-pictures of life as it is lived by those men
of the English-speaking races whose lot is cast in the sun-bathed
countries of Latin-America. Mr. Atkin’s verses will reach the hearts
of all who feel the call of the wanderlust, and, having shared their
pleasures and hardships, his poems will vividly recall to “old-timers”
bygone memories of days spent in the land of the Coconut Tree.

=Baedeker Guide to the United States.= With Excursions to Mexico, Cuba,
Porto Rico and Alaska. With 33 Maps and 48 Plans.

  Fourth Edition, 1909.      Cloth, 20/- net.

_IMPORTANT._ Travellers to the Republics of South America will find
cloth, pocket size.

  Price 4/- net each.

Ask for Wessely’s Edition, published by Mr. T. Fisher Unwin.



Each volume of “The Story of the Nations” Series is the work of a
recognized scholar, chosen for his knowledge of the subject and ability
to present history in an attractive form, for the student and the
general reader. The Illustrations and Maps are an attractive feature of
the volume, which are strongly bound for constant use.

  _67 Volumes._      _Cloth, 7s. 6d. net each._

 “It is many years since Messrs. T. Fisher Unwin commenced the
 publication of a series of volumes now entitled ‘The Story of the
 Nations.’ Each volume is written by an acknowledged authority on the
 country with which it deals. The series has enjoyed great popularity,
 and not an uncommon experience being the necessity for a second,
 third, and even fourth impression of particular volumes.”


 “Probably no publisher has issued a more informative and valuable
 series of works than those included in ‘The Story of the Nations.’”


 “The series is likely to be found indispensable in every school

      _Pall Mall Gazette._

 “An admirable series.”


 “Such a universal history as the series will present us with in its
 completion will be a possession such as no country but our own can
 boast of. Its success on the whole has been very remarkable.”

      _Daily Chronicle._

 “There is perhaps no surer sign of the increased interest that is
 now being taken in historical matters than the favourable reception
 which we believe both here and in America is being accorded to the
 various volumes of ‘The Story of the Nations’ as they issue in quick
 succession from the press. More than one volume has reached its third
 edition in England alone.... Each volume is written by one of the
 foremost English authorities on the subject with which it deals....
 It is almost impossible to over-estimate the value of the series
 of carefully prepared volumes, such as are the majority of those
 comprising this library.... The illustrations make one of the most
 attractive features of the series.”






By EMILE CAMMAERTS. With Maps and Illustrations. Large Crown 8vo.
Cloth, 12/6 net.

A complete history of the Belgian nation from its origins to its
present situation has not yet been published in this country. Up
till now Belgian history has only been treated as a side issue in
works concerned with the Belgian art, Belgian literature or social
conditions. Besides, there has been some doubt with regard to the
date at which such a history ought to begin, and a good many writers
have limited themselves to the modern history of Belgium because they
did not see in olden times sufficient evidence of Belgian unity.
According to the modern school of Belgian historians, however, this
unity, founded on common traditions and common interests, has asserted
itself again and again through the various periods of history in spite
of invasion, foreign domination and the various trials experienced
by the country. The history of the Belgian nation appears to the
modern mind as a slow development of one nationality constituted by
two races speaking two different languages but bound together by
geographical, economic and cultural conditions. In view of the recent
proof Belgium has given of her patriotism during the world-war, this
impartial enquiry into her origins may prove interesting to British
readers. Every opportunity has been taken to insist on the frequent
relationships between the Belgian provinces and Great Britain from
the early middle ages to the present time, and to show the way in
which both countries were affected by them. Written by one of the most
distinguished Belgian writers, who has made a specialty of his subject,
this work will be one of the most brilliant and informing contributions
in “The Story of the Nations.”


1 =Rome:= From the Earliest Times to the End of the Republic. By ARTHUR
GILMAN, M.A. Third Edition.

      With 43 Illustrations and Maps.

2 =The Jews:= In Ancient, Mediæval and Modern Times. By Professor JAMES
K. HOSMER. Eighth Impression.

      With 37 Illustrations and Maps.

3 =Germany.= By S. BARING-GOULD, M.A. Seventh Impression.

      With 108 Illustrations and Maps.

4 =Carthage: or the Empire of Africa.= By Professor ALFRED J. CHURCH,
M.A. With the Collaboration of Arthur Gilman, M.A.

  Ninth Impression.      With 43 Illustrations and Maps.

5 =Alexander’s Empire.= By JOHN PENTLAND MAHAFFY, D.D. With the
Collaboration of Arthur Gilman, M.A.

  Eighth Impression.      With 43 Illustrations and Maps.

6 =The Moors in Spain.= By STANLEY LANE-POOLE. With the Collaboration
of Arthur Gilman, M.A.

  Eighth Edition.      With 29 Illustrations and Maps.

7 =Ancient Egypt.= By Professor GEORGE RAWLINSON, M.A. Tenth Edition.

  Eleventh Impression.      With 50 Illustrations and Maps.

8 =Hungary.= In Ancient, Mediæval and Modern Times. By Professor
ARMINIUS VAMBÉRY. With Collaboration of Louis Heilpin.

  Seventh Edition.      With 47 Illustrations and Maps.

9 =The Saracens:= From the Earliest Times to the Fall of Bagdad. By

  Fourth Edition.      With 57 Illustrations and Maps.

10 =Ireland.= By the Hon. EMILY LAWLESS. Revised and brought up to date
by J. O’Toole. With some additions by Mrs. Arthur Bronson.

  Eighth Impression.      With 58 Illustrations and Maps.

11 =Chaldea=: From the Earliest Times to the Rise of Assyria. By

  Seventh Impression.      With 80 Illustrations and Maps.

12 =The Goths=: From the Earliest Times to the End of the Gothic
Dominion in Spain. By HENRY BRADLEY.

  Fifth Edition.      With 35 Illustrations and Maps.

13 =Assyria=: From the Rise of the Empire to the Fall of Nineveh.
(Continued from “Chaldea.”) By ZÉNAÏDE A. RAGOZIN.

  Seventh Impression.      With 81 Illustrations and Maps.

14 =Turkey.= By STANLEY LANE-POOLE, assisted by C. J. W. Gibb and
Arthur Gilman.

  New Edition.      With a new Chapter on recent events (1908).
  With 43 Illustrations and Maps.

15 =Holland.= By Professor J. E. THOROLD ROGERS.

  Fifth Edition.      With 57 Illustrations and Maps.

16 =Mediæval France:= From the Reign of Huguar Capet to the beginning
of the 16th Century. By GUSTAVE MASSON, B.A.

  Sixth Edition.      With 48 Illustrations and Maps.

17 =Persia.= By S. G. W. BENJAMIN.

  Fourth Edition.      With 56 Illustrations and Maps.

18 =Phœnicia.= By Professor GEORGE RAWLINSON, M.A.

  Third Edition.      With 47 Illustrations and Maps.

19 =Media, Babylon, and Persia=: From the Fall of Nineveh to the

  Fourth Edition.      With 17 Illustrations and Maps.

20 =The Hansa Towns.= By HELEN ZIMMERN.

  Third Edition.      With 51 Illustrations and Maps.

21 =Early Britain.= By Professor ALFRED J. CHURCH, M.A.

  Sixth Impression.      With 57 Illustrations and Maps.

22 =The Barbary Corsairs.= By STANLEY LANE-POOLE. With additions by J.

  Fourth Edition.      With 39 Illustrations and Maps.

23 =Russia.= By W. R. MORFILL, M.A.

  Fourth Edition.      With 60 Illustrations and Maps.

24 =The Jews under Roman Rule.= By W. D. MORRISON.

  Second Impression.      With 61 Illustrations and Maps.

25 =Scotland:= From the Earliest Times to the Present Day. By JOHN

  Fifth Impression.      With 60 Illustrations and Maps.

26 =Switzerland.= By LINA HUG and R. STEAD.

  Third Impression.      With over 54 Illustrations, Maps, etc.

27 =Mexico.= By SUSAN HALE.

  Third Impression.      With 47 Illustrations and Maps.

28 =Portugal.= By H. MORSE STEPHENS, M.A. New Edition. With a new
Chapter by Major M. HUME and 5 new Illustrations.

  Third Impression.      With 44 Illustrations and Maps.

29 =The Normans.= Told chiefly in Relation to their Conquest of

  Third Impression.      With 35 Illustrations and Maps.

30 =The Byzantine Empire.= By C. W. C. OMAN, M.A.

  Third Edition.      With 44 Illustrations and Maps.

31 =Sicily:= Phœnician, Greek, and Roman. By Professor E. A. FREEMAN.

  Third Edition.      With 45 Illustrations.

32 =The Tuscan Republics= (Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca) =with Genoa.=

      With 40 Illustrations and Maps.

33 =Poland.= By W. R. MORFILL.

  Third Impression.      With 50 Illustrations and Maps.

34 =Parthia.= By Professor GEORGE RAWLINSON.

  Third Impression.      With 48 Illustrations and Maps.

35 =The Australian Commonwealth.= (New South Wales, Tasmania, Western
Australia, South Australia, Victoria, Queensland, New Zealand.) By

  Fifth Impression.      With 36 Illustrations and Maps.

36 =Spain.= Being a Summary of Spanish History from the Moorish
Conquest to the Fall of Granada (A.D. 711-1492). By HENRY EDWARD WATTS.

  Third Edition.      With 36 Illustrations and Maps.

37 =Japan.= By DAVID MURRAY, Ph.D., LL.D. With a new Chapter by JOSEPH

      35 Illustrations and Maps.

38 =South Africa.= (The Cape Colony, Natal, Orange Free State, South
African Republic, Rhodesia, and all other Territories south of the
Zambesi.) By Dr. GEORGE MCCALL THEAL, D.Litt., LL.D. Revised and
brought up to date.

  Eleventh Impression.      With 39 Illustrations and Maps.

39 =Venice.= By ALETHEA WIEL.

  Fifth Impression.      With 61 Illustrations and a Map.

40 =The Crusades:= The Story of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. By T.

  Third Impression.      With 58 Illustrations and 3 Maps.

41 =Vedic India:= As embodied principally in the Rig-Veda. By ZÉNAÏDE

  Third Edition.      With 36 Illustrations and Maps.

42 =The West Indies and the Spanish Main.= By JAMES RODWAY, F.L.S.

  Third Impression.      With 48 Illustrations and Maps.

43 =Bohemia:= From the Earliest Times to the Fall of National
Independence in 1620; with a Short Summary of later Events. By C.

  Second Impression.      With 41 Illustrations and Maps.

44 =The Balkans= (Rumania, Bulgaria, Servia and Montenegro). By W.
MILLER, M.A. New Edition. With a new Chapter containing their History
from 1296 to 1908.

      With 39 Illustrations and Maps.

45 =Canada.= By Sir JOHN BOURINOT, C.M.G. With 63 Illustrations and
Maps. Second Edition. With a new Map and revisions, and a supplementary

      Third Impression.

46 =British India.= By R. W. FRAZER, LL.D.

  Eighth Impression.      With 30 Illustrations and Maps.

47 =Modern France, 1789-1895.= By ANDRÉ LEBON. With 26 Illustrations
and a Chronological Chart of the Literary, Artistic, and Scientific
Movement in Contemporary France.

      Fourth Impression.

48 =The Franks.= From their Origin as a Confederacy to the
Establishment of the Kingdom of France and the German Empire. By LEWIS

  Second Edition.      With 40 Illustrations and Maps.

49 =Austria.= By SIDNEY WHITMAN. With the Collaboration of J. R.

  Third Edition.      With 35 Illustrations and a Map.

50 =Modern England before the Reform Bill.= By JUSTIN MCCARTHY.

      With 31 Illustrations.

51 =China.= By Professor R. K. DOUGLAS. Fourth Edition. With a new
Preface. 51 Illustrations and a Map. Revised and brought up to date by

52 =Modern England under Queen Victoria=: From the Reform Bill to the

  Second Edition.      With 46 Illustrations.

53 =Modern Spain, 1878-1898.= By MARTIN A. S. HUME.

  Second Impression.      With 37 Illustrations and a Map.

54 =Modern Italy, 1748-1898.= By PROFESSOR PIETRO ORSI.

      With over 40 Illustrations and Maps.

55 =Norway=: From the Earliest Times. By Professor HJALMAR H. BOYESEN.
With a Chapter by C. F. KEARY.

      With 77 Illustrations and Maps.

56 =Wales.= By OWEN EDWARDS.

  With 47 Illustrations and 7 Maps.      Fifth Impression.

57 =Mediæval Rome:= From Hildebrand to Clement VIII, 1073-1535. By

      With 35 Illustrations.

58 =The Papal Monarchy:= From Gregory the Great to Boniface VIII. By
WILLIAM BARRY, D.D. Second Impression.

      With 61 Illustrations and Maps.

59 =Mediæval India under Mohammedan Rule.= By STANLEY LANE-POOLE.

  With 59 Illustrations.      Twelfth Impression.

60 =Parliamentary England:= The Evolution of the Cabinet System,
1660-1832. By EDWARD JENKS.

      With 47 Illustrations.

61 =Buddhist India.= By T. W. RHYS DAVIDS.

  Fourth Impression.      With 57 Illustrations and Maps.

62 =Mediæval England, 1066-1350.= By MARY BATESON.

      With 93 Illustrations.

63 =The Coming of Parliament.= (England, 1350-1660.) By L. CECIL JANE.

      With 51 Illustrations and a Map.

64 =The Story of Greece:= From the Earliest Times to A.D. 14. By E. S.

      With 2 Maps and about 70 Illustrations.

65 =The Story of the Roman Empire.= (29 B.C. to A.D. 476.) By H. STUART

      Third Impression.      With a Map and 52 Illustrations.

66 =Sweden and Denmark.= With Chapters on Finland and Iceland. By JON

      With Maps and 40 Illustrations.

67 =Belgium.= By EMILE CAMMAERTS.

      12s. 6d.


  T. FISHER UNWIN Ltd., 1 Adelphi
  Terrace, London,      W.C.2
  And of all Booksellers throughout the World

       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber’s Notes

Inconsistencies in hyphenation have been retained. Original
capitalization and spelling has been retained except in the cases of
the following apparent typographical errors:


Page 95, “Filippinos” changed to “Filipinos.” (resemblance between
Filipinos and)

Page 140, “prietesses” changed to “priestesses.” (elderly women are

Page 253, under Russia heading, “Mapz” changed to “Maps.” (With 60
Illustrations and Maps.)

Page 46, “outcaste” changed to “outcast.” (the outcast class of China)

*** End of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "Among the Head-Hunters of Formosa" ***

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