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Spence의 부산, 원산, 영흥만 조사 보고서

제1차 조약 체결 과정

  • 발신자T.F. Wade
  • 수신자G.L.G. Granville
  • 발송일1881년 2월 18일(음)
  • 수신일1881년 4월 16일(음)
  • 출전FO 17/857; FO 881/4595; AADM pp. 83-100
Sir T. Wade to Earl Granville. ―(Received April 16)

(No. 5 Confidential)
Peking, February 18, 1881

My Lord,

I SHOULD have reported to-day in extenso my proceedings with reference to the Corean question which were summarized in my telegram No. 10 of the 9th instant, but I received yesterday some information which I wish to lay before your Lordship with the rest.
Meanwhile, I inclose copy of a Memorandum of the visit of the “Vettor Pisani” to that country, prepared by Mr. Spence; who, at the request of Signor di Luca, the Minister Resident of Italy, was allowed by Mr. Clement Allen, then Acting Consul at Shanghae, to accompany the Duke of Genoa.
I was under the impression, until within the last few days, that Mr. Spence’s interesting paper had been forwarded by Mr. Allen directly to your Lordship.

I have, &c.

Inclosure in No. 38

Report by Mr. Spence of his Visit to Corea with His Royal Highness the Duke of Genoa.

[Map not received.]

HAVING received an invitation in July to accompany His Royal Highness the Duke of Genoa to Corea, I proceeded, with the sanction of Her Majesty’s Consul, to Japan, to join the Prince’s ship, the “Vettor Pisani,” at Kobe. I joined the vessel on the 26th July, and received a most cordial and hospitable welcome both from the Prince and his suite.
Before our arrival on the shores of Corea, the Prince informed me that he had no special powers from the Italian Government to enter into negotiations on any specific subject with the Corean authorities. His object, he said, in visiting Corea was mainly one of curiosity to see what was possible to be seen of a country and a people so secluded, and to make an attempt to enter into friendly relations with such of the Corean authorities along the coast as he might meet with.
The Prince asked me if I had any ideas as to the best way he could attain these objects, and I told him that, as far as I could judge from recent events and from the experience of the foreign officials who had attempted to approach the Corean authorities through the Japanese Consuls there, his best plan would be to go to ports where there were no Japanese. This opinion, I knew, coincided with M. de Luca’s, and before leaving Shanghae I had had an interview with Captain. Fourmier, of the “Lynx,” who informed me that his experiences in Corea led him to believe the same. Indeed, Captain Fourmier said that the Japanese authorities were in league with the Coreans to frustrate every attempt on the part of Representatives or I officers of European nations to enter into relations with Corean officials. I also informed the Prince that it was a very natural thing that the Japanese should be anxious to keep a monopoly of such foreign trade as they could coax into existence in Corea, and should, with that view, adopt the extreme measure of assisting the Coreans to remain in the most. complete isolation. This view is, of course, no novel one, and I found that the Prince, who had heard it from other sources, was inclined to believe it. However, he said he was anxious to find out for himself whether it was true or not, and though he did not expect to be able to communicate with the Corean authorities through the Japanese Consuls, he hoped to be able to form some idea whether the influence they possessed would be used for or against Europeans.
I had furnished myself before leaving with the books on Corea written by E. Oppert and the Rev. John Ross. These worthless publications gave us but a meagre idea of the country we were about to visit; but I am happy to say that by the kindness of Mr. Aston, our Consul at Kobé, I was supplied with several much more useful books, notably the “Histoire de l’Eglise dans la Corée,” by far the best book on the country I have seen, and vol. iv of Siebold’s “Japan.” He also gave me several Corean books., written in Chinese by Coreans, to show me. how far, if at all, their Chinese differed from the language now current in China, and the maps of Corea published by the Japanese Government. All these proved of the greatest interest and use.
We left Simonoseki on the 28th July, and sailed across the Corean Channel in a single night, passing the Island of Tsushima on our way, and cast anchor next day at the south-east corner of the peninsula in Chosen Harbour, where is situated the most southerly of the two Corean ports open to the Japanese, Fusan.
The harbour of Fusan, or Chosen, is well known. Its surroundings are fully and accurately described on p. 68 of vol. iv of the “China Sea Directory” of 1873. It affords a magnificent anchorage for many more ships than are likely to frequent the port, and it is open all the winter. I have little to add to the description given in the pUblication{publication} mentioned. All the sides of the harbour, except the south, are studded with villages, containing a resident population of 10,000 or 12,000, engaged in fishing. At certain times of the year there is an enormous influx to these fishing-towns of people from the interior, to catch and cure the ribbon-fish, which visit the harbour in shoals. The southern shore of the harbour is formed by Deer Island, a densely-wooded pe'§:k some 1,500 feet high. It is a Government reservation, where the Government stud of diminutive ponies is turned out to graze. At the time of our visit there were several hundreds of these “horses” roaming about the lower slopes of Deer Island, and, with the exception of their keepers, it is uninhabited. It abounds with pheasants, hog-deer, wild pig, and even tigers, as I myself can testify.
The country round the harbour is all within the jurisdiction of the Prefect of Tung Tsaifoo, or, as it is called by, the Coreans and Japanese, Toraifoo. The walled city of Torai is situated a few miles inland, and is the seat of the Local Government. It is with this official, dignified by the name of Governor, that Commodore Schufeldt, on behalf of the United States, and Captain Fourmier, on behalf of the French Minister at Peking, tried to enter into official relations. Both these officers availed themselves of the services of the Japanese Consul at Fusan to convey their letters to the Prefect; but, in both cases, the Prefect not only refused to receive or open them, but did so in a rude and offensive-manner.
Immediately on anchoring in the harbour CounJ; Candiani, the Prince’s First Aide-de-camp. and myself, went on shore to the Japanese Settlement to visit the Consul, and to present him with the letters with which the Prince was furnished by the Foreign Minister at Tokio. After a short interview we took him off to the ship to call on the Prince. In the course of conversation he warned us not to land anywhere except on Deer Island, lest we should have our heads broken with stones; and, with regard to communicating with the local authority at Torai, he offered to forward a letter, but he gave it as his opinion that the Prefect would decline to receive it.
The Prince, however, in spite of this warning, directed Count Candiani next day to write a despatch to the Prefect, and to send it under flying seal through the Japanese Consul, with a note to him asking him to read and forward it. Both note and despatch were duly translated into Chinese by myself, and sent to the Consul on the 1st August. The following was the substance of the note:-

“Fusan Po, August 1, 1880

“Count Candiani presents his compliments to the Japanese Consul, and begs to hand him herewith a letter to the Prefect of Torai, under flying seal. He begs the Consul to forward it, as an inclosure, in a cover addressed by himself to the Prefect.
“Count Candiani is well aware of the indisposition of the Corean authorities to enter into communication with the officials of foreign nations not in Treaty relations with Corea, but he hopes that, in the present case, the Prefect will not be so ungracious as to refuse to receive a simple letter of thanks.
“Count Candiani would be glad if the Consul would state in his covering letter that the ‘Vettor Pisani’ has come to Corea simply to express the thanks of the Italian people for the kind treatment by Coreans’ of a shipwrecked Italian sailor.
“The Count takes this opportunity of thanking the Consul for his good offices, and the Consul may rest assured that His Royal Highness the Duke of Genoa will bring the services of the Consul to the notice of his Government.”
The despatch inclosed in the foregoing note ran as follows. It sufficiently indicates the main purpose of the Prince’s visit: —

“To Shen, Prefect of Torai, &c.

“Fusan Po, August 1, 1880


“Two years ago an Italian merchant-ship, named the ‘Bianca Portica,’ was wrecked on the coast of Quelpart, and the whole of the crew were drowned with the exception of one sailor, Santolo.
“This sailor received the greatest kindness at the hands of the population, and, subsequently, the Corean authorities took charge of him, gave him food and clothes, and kept him until he was able to get back to his country.
“This instance of the humane treatment of Italian sailors having come to the notice of our Government, it has excited a feeling of gratitude, and as the Italian ship ‘Vettor Pisani,’ under my command, is at present on the Japan Station, I have been commissionpri by the Government to come here to thank the Corean Government and people for their kindness. I am charged, at the same time, to reimburse you for all the expenses which may have been incurred by either officials or people in saving Santolo's life.
“In view of the good relations which ought to subsist between our respective countries, it would be a great pity if the ‘Vettor Pisani’ had to leave Fusan and return home without accomplishing the present mission of courtesy to the Corean Government. It is in order to accomplish the orders I have received that I have now the honour to address this despatch to you, and I beg you to communicate its contents to your Government.

“I have, &c.
(Signed)  “CANDIANI”

While the Prince was waiting for the Prefect’s answer, I employed the intervening days in conversing with the Corean merchants in the Japanese Settlement, in visiting the different Japanese shops to find. out{find out} the classes and qualities of goods most readily saleable, and in trying to get such information regarding the government and trade of the Settlement as would be either useful or interesting. Conversation with the Coreans was conducted by the slow but not unsatisfactory method of written Chinese characters, and I found the Coreans in the south much more reticent and suspicious than in the north. The Japanese Consul also furnished me with the statistics I asked for.
The Settlement of Fusan has been inhabited by Japanese ever since the Treaty of 1615 between Japan and Corea with which Fidejoshi concluded his victorious campaigns. It was garrisoned by the Japanese Princes of Tsushima for two centuries with 300 or 400 soldiers, but,-far what purpose, it is hard to say. The garrison was kept under the most severe restrictions by the Corean Government, similar to those imposed by the Japanese themselves on the Dutch at Decima.
From the sea the Settlement has the appearance of an ordinary Japanese town, the houses being of wood and of the usual Japanese type. It is pleasantly situated in a magnificent grove of fir-trees of fabulous age and enormous size. Immediately on the port being opened the Japanese population rose to 700, and it has gone on increasing until there are, to-day, over 2,300 residents.
Every inducement is held out by the Japanese authorities to encourage settlers to come to Corea. The land on which the Settlement is built is leased by the Corean Government to the Japanese for a nominal rent of 50 dollars per annum. On application by any Japanese wishing to settle in Fusan, a lot of land is assigned and made over to him by the Consul, free of all charge and expense whatever; whether of initial price or annual rent. On this lot he is at liberty to build, and he may sell or mortgage his land to any other Japanese subject, provided the consent of the Consul is obtained. The Municipal Government of the Settlement is entirely in the hands of the Consul, but in matters where he desires to have the opinion and support of the public he takes no steps until he has consulted the leading merchants. The police, draining, and lighting are all attended to after the manner of European Settlements in Japan; there is a Chamber of Commerce, a public hospital with duly qualified surgeons, and, I believe, a large Japanese Buddhist temple.
Fusan is, as yet, a free port. There is neither an import nor an export Tariff. The Corean authorities have stationed a small custom-house at the jetty where goods are landed, but its functions are confined to preventing the importation of articles which are, in Corea, a Government monopoly, or articles whose importation has been forbidden by Treaty. A Tariff is at the present time in process of negotiation, and as soon as the amount of duty is agreed upon it will beput in force.
In the year 1879 the imports were of the value of 560,000 yen. They consisted of English cotton goods, Japanese copper, foreign dyes, and Japanese silk goods and notions. I visited nearly all the shops in the Settlement, and carefully examined the cotton goods which were exposed for sale. I was surprised to ‘find that they consisted entirely of ordinary English grey and white shirtings of 7 lbs. to 8 lbs. per piece. It is notorious in China that Corea is one of the principal markets for American shirtings, and for the heavy and more expensive cotton cloths imported into Shanghae. In the Settlement of Fusan, however, I could not find a single piece of heavy cotton cloth, either English or American. All the goods were light weight, had come from Shanghae, and bore the names and marks of Birley, Brand, Reiss, Holliday, Thorne, and other well-known importing houses. The present consumption of piece-goods is from 5,000 to 7,000 pieces, a-month, and is increasing.
The exports in 1879 amounted to 670,000 yen. They consisted of rice, furs, gold-dust, dried fish, seaweed, and medicines. There is no restriction at present to the export of grain.
The volume of the trade of the port is increasing, and for the half-year ended the 30th June last it amounted to 760,000 yen. It is very surprising that so small a trade can support 2,300 residents. In other ways, however, than legitimate commerce the Japanese try to make money in Fusan, for I saw more than one large tea-house where Japanese girls were entertaining crowds of Coreans with tea, music, singing, &c.
The currency of the port is Corean cash, which are more valuable and better made than Chinese. It is, however, only suitable for small transactions, and, in order to make the smallest purchases, a Corean visitor to the Settlement has to have two or three servants to carry the few strings of cash he means to spend. The few transactions of any magnitude which take place are done by means of barter-so many pieces of cloth for so many bags of rice. A short time ago the Corean Government suddenly interdicted the export of rice, and the consequence was that the Japanese merchants lost heavily through the inability of their Corean customers to complete their contracts, and the whole trade of the port was, deranged until the prohibition was removed.
The Settlement swarms ‘with Coreans during the day, who come in from the towns and villages in the neighbourhood. They are ordered by law to leave every night, but many of them do not do so, and some are engaged by and live permanently with the Japanese as domestic servants. Every Corean merchant intent on buying is accompanied apparently by half-a-dozen friends, who advise him regarding the transaction he is about to make, and by his servants, who carry a load of the international currency. The transactions, as a rule, are trifling in amount, and preceded by an interminable conversation, which, in many cases, leads to nothing.Accusations of cheating are freely bandied about on both sides, and it is only after much strong language and rigorous measurement that a piece of cloth is sold.
There is communication by steamer twice a-month with Japan. The trade besides gives employment to about a dozen Japanese schooners of foreign type, which ply between Fusan, Simonoseki, Nagasaki, and Osaka.
The Japanese Consul is in official communication with the Prefect of Toraifoo, with whom he corresponds on a footing of equality.
The Japanese in Corea live under their own laws, administered by their Consuls. Attached to the Consulate at Fusan is a Court, a gaol, a staff of police, and the usual official machinery for the arrest, trial, and punishment of offenders. In deciding mixed cases, as between Coreans and Japanese, in theory a most wise course is pursued. When a Corean brings a case against a Japanese, the Consul tries the case by Japanese law; and, pari ratione, when a Japanese brings a case against a Corean, the Prefect of Torai tries the case by Corean law. It has taken us many years of experience in China to find out that the only practical and logical solution of the difficulty of mixed cases is for the forum and the lex fori to be that of the defendant; but Japan ‘and Corea have blundered upon it at the very outset of their Treaty intercourse.
In practice, however, any supposed offence by a Corean in the Settlement is summarily dealt with by the first policeman who catches him, or by any Japanese who cares to assume the task of beating the offender. I regret to say that the Japanese treat the Coreans who come to the Settlement merely as visitors out of curiosity very badly. They buffet and kick them as they would beasts, and it seemed marvellous to me how these strong, stalwart men put up with the vile treatment they received from the Japanese pigmies. I have no doubt that it is for this reason that stones are thrown by the Coreans at foreigners When they try to approach any of the villages which fringe the shore of the harbour of Fusan, and that the timidity and submissiveness which we found elsewhere in Corea were said to be wanting here.
I was not sanguine that the Prefect of Torai would reply to Count Candiani’s despatch, but I thought that as the Japanese Consul knew that Italy was not a great commercial Power in the East, and one far from aggressive, he might in this case make an exception. I therefore did not tell the Consul that I was an Englishman. Unfortunately, our pilot, who was asked on the evening of the 2nd August to conduct the Consul from the ship to the shore, was indiscreet enough to tell him that the British Consul from Shanghae was on board the “Vettor Pisani,” and to indulge in some silly threats as to what would happen if the Prefect did not reply to Count Candiani’s letter. This of course made the prospect of any answer hopeless, and after such a misadventure I was not surprised to find that next day Count Candiani received the following letter from the Japanese Consul:-
“The Consul had the honour to receive two days ago from Count Candiani a letter inclosing, under flying seal, a despatch for the Prefect of Toraifoo, and requesting the Consul to send it on to its destination, and to explain to the Prefect that it was merely a letter of thanks to the Corean Government for rescuing and saving a shipwrecked Italian seaman.
“On receipt of Count Candiani’s instructions the Consul sent on the despatch at once to the Prefect, and explained its purport carefully to him. To-day the Consul has received the Prefect’s reply. It is to the effect that no Corean law empowers him to receive Count Candiani’s despatch.
“The Consul has done everything in his power to assist Count Candiani. He is mortified at this untoward result, and his regret is infinite. He has now the h9nour{honour} to inclose a copy of the Prefect’s reply, which he begs to place before Count Candiani. He begs that Count Candiani will, out of his great bounty, forgive him.”
The Prefect’s reply to the Consul’s letter covering Count Candiani’s despatch ran thus: —
Shên, Prefect of Toraifoo, &c., makes a communication in reply to the Consul. The Prefect has had the honour to receive, and has read, the Consul’s letter; and for the Consul’s careful consideration of the subject he is exceedingly obliged.
“Whenever men meet with hardships or accidents, to save and succour them is the ordinary instinct of the whole human race. When the Italian ship was lost two years ago on Quelpart, it was by the aid of Heaven that one man was saved; and in helping and relieving him the local officials and people were but acting on ordinary natural instinct.
“The despatch forwarded to the Prefect by a specially-commissioned Italian vessel expresses the most generous sentiments, and the gratitude of the Prefect is inexpressible. But in the Prefect’s country correspondence by letter with foreign countries has never been sanctioned by custom or law. He cannot, therefore, in the present instance, receive the despatch which has arrived, and must send it back.
“The Prefect deeply regrets to have to take this step, for how could it be his wish to be ungrateful for sentiments so noble? The Consul must make allowance for what the Prefect has said, and offer to the Italian ship consolation for the trouble they have taken in coming so far, by explaining to them the customary rule, which he cannpt{cannot} overstep. Will the Consul explain to them, on the Prefect’s behalf; his apparent forgetfulness of all they have done, so that his conduct may not appear to them to be unnatural? This the Prefect earnestly begs the Consul to do.
“A respectful reply, addressed on the 28th day of the 6th moon to the Consul for Japan at :Wusan.”
A short note to the Consul was subsequently received on the same day from the Prefect, politely declining an invitation which Count Candiani had sent him, through the Chnsul{Consul}, to visit the “Vettor Pisani.”
On the occasion of my first visit to the Japanese Consul I was shown a photograph of the Prefect of Torai, and as it was the first time I had seen a likeness of a Corean official, I observed it closely. While we were waiting for the Prefect’s reply, I was in the Japanese Settlement on the 2nd August during the greater part of the day. To my surprise, I met an old Corean gentleman dressed in official clothes, but accompanied by only two followers, who appeared to me singularly like the Prefect of Torai. I got into conversation with some Coreans in a neighbouring shop, and they informed me that it was the Prefect, and that he had been spending the day with the Japanese Consul. This was strange news to get on the day the Japanese Consul was professing to be waiting for the Prefect’s answer, at the very time when the Consul was regretting to me that Torai was so far off, and so much time wasted in sending letters to the Prefect. That it was the Prefect himself there was no doubt, because the Japanese themselves confirmed the story which I got from the Coreans. And in the evening, when the Prince and myself were landing to go to a Corean dinner which was given in honour of the Prince by the Consul, we were watched by the Prefect again, and followed by him, with, apparently intense curiosity, up to the gates of the Consulate. The old gentleman’s curiosity had got the better of his discretion. Nothing, however, was said to the Japanese Consul which would have led him to believe that we knew that his distant correspondent had been closeted with him all day.
I have alluded to this incident because it shows distinctly that the answers which the Prefect made to the Consul á propos of Count Candiani’s despatch were written by the Prefect and the Consul together. It affords the strongest presumption also that the policy pursued by the Corean local authority at Fusan vis-a-vis the European officials who visit the port from time to time is not only approved by the Japanese Government, but, as Captain Fourmier surmised, in carrying it out the Coreans have the active co-operation and assistance of the Japanese Consul.
Our visit to Fusan, therefore, was to a certain extent satisfactory in that it was made abundantly evident that no communication whatever with Corean officials is possible at the ports open to Japanese. So far the Prince’s future course was simplified.
Before leaving Fusan Count Candiani addressed the following letter to the Japanese Chnsul{Consul}: —

“‘Vettor Pisani,’ Fusan, Corea, August 6, 1880.


“I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter yesterday on the subject of my despatch to the Prefect of Toraifoo. I regret that he is precluded by Corean law from accepting it; but although the result is not such as I expected, it is not the less my duty to thank you for your good offices.
“The letter which I had the honour to address the Prefect of Toraifoo was one of ,thanks and of pure courtesy, such as is customary under similar circumstances between friendly nations. Although I am pleased that the Prefect has become acquainted with what I wish to tell him, I do not conceal from you, however, that I was surprised to learn, from the answer which the Prefect sent to you, that he regretted he could not transmit the contents of my despatch to his Government, because the two nations were not in relations, and because he was forbidden to treat with foreigners in writing by the laws of Corea and the orders of his superiors.
“It appears, then, that Corean laws contain, upon this point, a lacuna which they will be obliged, sooner or later, to fill up. Although in this case of the loss by shipwreck of an Italian vessel everything passed off to the complete satisfaction of our Government, it is possible that this may not always be the case. More than one shipwreck has happened on the Coreancoast where the poor sailors received very different kind of treatment, and our Government has no guarantee of’ any kind that in future the laws of humanity will be observed in case of shipwreck by the people or minor officials of Corea. If such a thing were again to happen, or some similar case of bad treatment proved, we should be compelled to take some other measures than the peaceful correspondence which we have, in the present instance, attempted with the Prefect of Toraifoo. And, besides, the exclusiveness of Corea is also prejudicial to herself. For so long as it exists it is difficult for us to punish any Italian sailor who may be charged with a delict within Corean territory.
“For a very long time Italy has in no wise been an aggressive nation, and has not tried to enrich herself at the expense of other countries. Her commerce even is very limited, and the Corean Government would have nothing to fear if they were to put themselves is relations with Italy.
“Moreover, the two great countries whose boundaries are conterminous with Corea have not lately been on good terms with each other, and if a feud breaks out between them Corea is perfectly certain to suffer. In such a case it would be of the greatest advantage for Corea to be in relations with foreign countries.
“On these various grounds it is much to be deplored that Italy and Corea have not yet arranged to be on friendly terms with each other.
“I shall, in the course of time, inform the Italian Government of the reply of the Prefect of Toraifoo, for such decision as it may see fit to make.
“I shall, at the same time, make known to the Italian Ministers at Tokio and Peking that the Prefect was unwilling to transmit to his superiors the thanks which formed the object of my despatch to him. In the meantime, I hold the Prefect of Toraifoo responsible for everything which may happen, and I shall find some other channel than him to communicate to the Corean Government at Seoul the contents of the correspondence which has passed.
“As you are in official and amicable relations with the Prefect. I have the honour, to request that you will be so kind as to forward to him a copy of this despatch.

(Signed) “CANDIANI

In the course of the day the Japanese Consul replied courteously that he would have much pleasure in forwarding to the Prefect a copy of Count Candiani’s letter. There was no means of finding out whether a copy was really sent to the Prefect or not, nor did the Prince stay to inquire. It will be observed that throughout the official correspondence, here as elsewhere, neither the Prince’s name nor rank appears, a precaution obviously necessary, and one to which. M. de Luca had drawn my attention before leaving Shanghae.
During the last two days of our stay at Fusan communication with the shore was difficult, owing to a succession of northerly gales, so we were unable to test the readiness of the Corean inhabitants to break the heads of casual foreign visitors with stones. On this account, and as the limit of profitable correspondence with the officials had been reached, the Prince gave orders to weigh anchor on the afternoon of the 6th August, and sail along the eastern coast of Corea.
During our stay at Fusan I found the Coreans perfectly willing to converse with me in a friendly manner, and to give me the information I desired. Every man carries a roll of paper with him and a pen and ink, and is ready to converse when invited to do so. I do not give here the conversations I had with them, because those which I had subsequently in the north were much more interesting, and because at Fusan I only saw the Coreans under the artificial conditions of Japanese Settlement life.
We sailed from Fusan along the eastern coast of Cor~a{Corea} as far as Yung Hing Bay. The physical configuration of the country in its g~neral{general} outlines resembles Italy. It is traversed from north to, south by, an axial mnge{range} of mountains which runs close to, and is parallel with, the east coast. The Corean rivers which flow into the Pacific are quite small, the main rivers rising to the west of the axial range and flo~in~{flowing} westward to the China Sea. The high east-coast line, which varies in height trom 4,000 to 6,000 feet, with peaks rising to 8,000 feet, is visible from a long distance at sea. On approaching the coast the country is seen to have a wild but attractive appearance. The mountains, which, with their outlying spurs, extend close to the shore, rise in tiers, range behind range, and are clothed from top to bottom in dense, impenetrable. jungle and forest. Some of the ranges are narsh and serrated; others, again, are more soft and rounded j but on all there is the same undergrowth of creepers, roses, dwarf oaks, and stunted conifers on the lower slopes, graduating into wild jungle and forest towards the summits. The narrow, deep Valleys are cultivated and thickly populated, but the mountains are given over to wild beasts. Tigers abound everywhere, and traps to catch them may be seen within a hundred yards of the sea. One is not surprised to learn that they are the plague of the country, for the jungle and forests which cover the hills make it a perfect home for them. Corea is a paradise for sportsmen, and I am sure that an energetic hunter of tigers would be welcomed everywhere as a public benefactor. In the Japanese port of Gensan, which we subsequently visited, tigers have even entered the Settlement at night; and excellent skins may be bought fora few dollars.
On the 8th August we anchored in the northern section of Yung Hing Bay, called by the Russians Port Lazareff. This is one of the points which the Russians are supposed to have designs upon, as a basis of operations against China. It is one of the finest harbours in the world, perfectly land-locked, with waters as unruffled as a lake, and with a practically infinite space of good holding-ground in from 8 to 9 fathoms of water. Though fringed with ice round the shores, the harbour is open in winter. We anchored some 5 miles from the northern end of the bay, at which end two rivers run into it. An extraordinary account of the larger of these, from French sources, is given in the “China Sea Directory,” vol. iv, which, however true at the time of the survey, is quite incorrect now. The French Admiral who surveyed it says that he found 10 feet of water on the bar, that he sailed 5 miles up the channel through a smiling and cultivated plain, and that, so far as he could judge from the information he procured, and the configuration of the country, the river led to the capital, and was navigable a long distance. The trend of the mountain-ranges is at right angles to the apparent course of the stream, and to reach the capital the river would have to cross a series of high mountains, and to flow south, instead of north-west, as it does. Of this, however, when we first arrived we knew nothing, and when we came to an anchor we knew no more about the country, the officials, and the people than if we had come to the moon.
The shores of this bay are a series of lovely inlets and coves, with the forest and jungle-dad hills dropping, in a sheet of green, on the border of white sand which marks the sea-shore. Here and there were meadows and valleys covered with rice-fields and villages.
The district was a populous one, at least on the low lands. On whatever part of the shore we landed we were soon surrounded by crowds of inquisitive people. Our first duty was to disarm their suspicions of us by conversing with them, and inviting them to visit the ship. The medium of communication was Chinese characters traced with the finger, or a piece of stick, on the sea-shore. I was surprised and delighted with a discovery which I made as soon as I landed. Every person in this part of Corea can write Chinese with the greatest facility. Peasants, fishermen, and boys, who are in China quite uneducated, could all write and read Chinese. All were most anxious to converse with us. The news of our invitations to visit the ship spread like wild-fire, and, on the day after our arrival, we were surrounded by Corean junks filled with eaget and excited visitors. Notes poured in upon us containing all sorts of requests, so the Prince directed the ship to be thrown open to all and sundry, and we were at once boarded by a swarm of Coreans, who invaded every corner of the ship. On shore men and boys would scuffle for the privilege of talking to me, and the questions put and answered were watched, read, and criticized with deep interest by a crowd of bystanders.
Next day we had many more visitors of a higher class, merchants and scholars from the neighbouring towns, and as soon as confidence was fairly established, I began, by request of the Prince, a series of formal interviews with them on board ship, with a view to getting some information regarding the Local Government.
I found it difficult to get them to talk about official matters, for various reasons. They were much more anxious to get than to give information, and often answered one question by asking another; and I believe they were really afraid to give information about their officials. I give at length here one conversation, to show the difficulty we experienced at first in finding out anything about the district we were in. It must be remembered, too, that these interviews were a great tax on my own patience; the Coreans crowded round me in a hot cabin; their odour and filth were alike unspeakably nasty; the most irrelevant questions were constantly asked me, and I had to submit to my hair and limbs being pulled and pinched to see if they were real. I eliminate from the conversation all misunderstandings, questions about particular characters, and most of the irrelevant qllestions, such as “Why do you throwaway glass bottles?” &c.
Spence. How far is it to the city of Yung Hing?-Corean. Several hundred li (really about fifty).
S. Are there any officials there? -C. Yes.
S. What are their names? -C. How should I know? I live here.
S. In what jurisdiction is this place? -C. In that of the Prefect of Yung Hing.
S. Are there any smaller officials under him? -C. Yes, everywhere.
S. Who are the nearest of these? -C. I find it hard to remember.
S. If the people hereabout make disturbances, to whom would they be responsible?-
C. We never make disturbances.
S. If you made disturbances-? -C. (interrupting). A complaint would be first made to the district officer, and he would report. it to the Prefect.
S. What is the name of the district officer here? -C. They are changed every
month. I don’t know.
S. We went to send a letter about a shipwreck (details given) to the Prefect; can we do so? -C. This is a matter for the Quelpart officials to deal with.
S. Oh, no. We want it to go to the capital through the Prefect here. -C. Well, do as you like.
S. Do you know anybody who would take our letter; we would pay him well? -C. When foreign ships come here, it is the duty of the district officers to report to the Prefect, and then the Prefect sends mim{men} to make inquiries. His men will be here ina few days. I must be going. (Exit)
S. (To another) What is the name of this place? -C. The West Lake of Yung Hing.
S. Are there any officials about here? -C. No.
S. How far is it to Yung Hing? -C. 120 Ii.
S. Li Chi-ch~ng is the Prefect, is he not? -C. Yes.
S. How long will it take to send a letter to him? -C. Three or four days.
S. Shall we send our letter through the district officers, or by a messenger? C. There are no district officers, and you will never be able to get a messenger.
S. We will pay one well. -C. It is perfectly impossible for any sum.
And so forth.
We found the Coreans ready enough to talk about everything except their Government, and they were all unwilling either to take a letter or hire a messenger to go to Yung Hing. Two or three days were spent in fruitless attempts to hire or bribe a man to take a letter to the Prefect, and in making excursions about the shores of the harbour, where we were always well received by the people. We devoted one whole day to the exploration of the embouchure of the river, in the steam-launch and the ship’s boats. We found, however, that there were only 3 feet of water on the bar, and, as Corean junks were grounded quite close to us, it is evident we had not lost our way nor mistaken the channel. It was high water, too, and we had full advantage of such small tide (2 feet) as there is. There was a small town on the alluvial delta formed by the river, called the Yung Hing Saltpits, where the sole industry was salt-making; and though we were unarmed we passed through considerable crowds of Coreans without the slightest molestation. At one time the Prince and I were on the top of a small hill with quite 200 Coreans round us, but we were treated with great courtesy by all, only we had to put up with a somewhat distressing curiosity to examine us. In all my conversations with the Coreans during our excursions and walks, the Prince took the liveliest interest, and he invariably over-rated what appeared to him to be my great talent in being able to communicate with the natives by signs traced on the hand or on the sand. Talking to them was to myself very pleasurable, because every person, young and old, could read, and in addressing one I addressed often a hundred. Their intelligence and intense eagerness to talk with me’ were everywhere remarkable.
Hempen clothes are universally worn by the labouring classes, and the thread is spun much finer than would be possible with European hemp. I tried to get some specimens of the fibre, but I was unsuccessful. It must be the same, I think, as the “China flax” which grows in the neighbourhood of Newchwang, and, as the importation of that fibre into England has long been desired by our flax-spinners, and is only restricted on account of its high price, attention will probably be drawn to the Corean hemp whenever the country is opened. Unfortunately I did not know the specific Chinese name for the flax of Chihli and Shing King. The better classes wear white cotton clothes, and many of them boast of an overall made of foreign cotton cloth, the gloss and finish of which they much admire. For that they prefer a heavy “honest” cloth, such as American sheeting. Of silk culture there was none in the country which we saw. They spin, however, the cocoons of the wild ailanthus, and I procured hanks of their silk (which to my inexperienced eye seemed closely to resemble Shantung silk) and several sheets of eggs, for Count Candiani, who is much interested in sericulture. Of ornamental art work, such as porcelain, bronze, &c., they have none. We saw some worthless pearls, and some silver work for feminine trappings and official insignia. The ceramic art is quite rudimentary, and they attach an excessive value to the commonest Japanese ware.
The meagre information I have given here is hardly noteworthy on its intrinsic merits, but it affords indisputable evidence of the peaceful and satisfactory relations
we had established with the people.
The first person who volunteered to help us to communicate with the authorities was a literary man from the capital. I had begun to despair of inducing anybody to convey a letter to the Corean officials, when, one morning, the following note was handed on board:—“My name is An Keui-shun; I come from the capital; I am a poor man, and I should like to see your ship. Please let me come on board.” We welcomed him on board, and I had the following conversation with him: —
Spence. How far is it from here to the capital? -Corean. 50 Ii by water to Gensan
then 550 li overland.
S. Are you a merchant? -C. I am 44 years old, an unsuccessful scholar at the examinations, and of a poor family. I want to go home, but I have no money. Where do you come from?
S. We are from Italy in the great West.-C. Have you the doctrines of the sacred Confucius there?
S. We have our own sacred man, Jesus. He is the foundation of truth in our country. We have come here to thank the Corean Government for (details as usual). Do you think we should send our letter to the Yung Hing Prefect or send it direct to Seoul? -C. Send it to the Prefect. He will send it on to his superiors.
S. Unfortunately, we can’t find anybody to take our letter. -C. Yesterday the people of this place reported your arrival to the Prefect.
S. We are uncertain whether he will send anyone to see us. -C. They will probably be here in a few days.
S. We cannot wait so long. Can’t you think of any plan by which we could send our letter; we will recompense you handsomely? -C. Give your letter to some of the people of this locality.
S. It is not very far; there is no necessity to employ people because they belong to this locality. -C. Nobody can go without money.
S. If anybody will go, we will give them as much as they want. If you yourself will take it, we will assist” you to get home. -C. Ask some of the local people outside.
S. If you take it to the capital for us, we will assist you with money. -C. If I took your letter to the capital, the king would cut off my head. Send it to the Prefect of Yung Hing, and there will be no trouble.
S. Can you find a man for us to take it? -C. I will bring one to-day or to-morrow. I have a friend outside who would like to come on board the ship to have a look at it. (Friend introduced) Give your letter to this mall, he will take it.
S. Our letter is not yet ready. Bring your friend to-morrow morning to get it. -C. Certainly.
S. Don’t forget. -C. We shall be here to-morrow morning. How could a scholar from the capital speak treacherous words?
He departed with a dollar, as earnest of what was to follow; but he did not appear next morning. He came on the evening of the third day, but by that time we had seen the Prefect ourselves, and had no use for him. I am inclined to think he was a spy.
The same afternoon an official junk came alongside, and the following note was handed on board:-
“In obedience to the commands of the local officials to inspect your vessel, we have come to have a look at her. May we come on board?”
We requested the four principal men to come on board, and of these the two highest in rank to come into the ,Prince’s cabin{the Prince’s cabin}. They told us that they had been sent by the Prefect of YUng Hing{Yung Hing}; that one was a military officer, the other a clerk of police. We informed them of the object of the visit of the “Vettor Pisani” to Corea, and, upon hearing it, they begged us not to be in a hurry, as the Prefect himself would come to visit the ship in a few days. They could assign no probable date to his visit, however, and the Prince attached but little importance to their statement. They also said that if we wished to send any letter, they would be happy to convey it to the Prefect; and ‘they promised faithfully to return next day to fetch it.
They did return next day, and as I had not finished the translation of it in Chinese, I requested them to wait until it was ready. When it was sealed they took the letter, looked at it rather suspiciously, and asked for the steam-launch to tow them to the shore. This they could not have, as steam was not up; and then, without a word of excuse, they laid it down, and said they could not take it.
Candiani. The steam-launch is not ready, and you cannot have her. - Officials. Then there is no help for it. When are you going away?
C. To-morrow. to Gensan. In two months we shall return here for the answer to our letter from your Government. (This discomposed them, and they handed back the letter.) - O. We are forbidden by our Government to receive letters from foreign countries. There is no help for it.
C. This is a simple letter of thanks, and has no other object whatever. Please receive it, and to-morrow we shall go away. Why did you promise to take it yesterday? - O. Yesterday we were in a great hurry, and although we promised as we were leaving the ship, we found the law to be such as we have said when we got home.
C. You told us distinctly you would take it, and when you came on board to-day you asked for it. Why have you just now changed your minds? - O. If we take your letter we shall be breaking our laws. We really cannot.
C. Why did you not say so yesterday? Do you refuse now because the launch is not ready? We will get up steam at once. - O. The Prefect will be here himself to-morrow. You can give it to him then.
C. What did you come back to the ship for, if it was not to fetch our letter? - O. It was to have a better look at the ship. We did not return to fetch your letter. The Prefect will be here himself to-morrow; why, therefore, do you want to compel us to break the laws?
C. When you came on board you asked if the letter was ready. Why do you thus recklessly eat your words? - O. The fact is that a small boat has followed us from the Prefect’s, and we have just heard by it that he is coming to-morrow.
C. Well, if you do not take our letter, we will take it ,ourselves, with soldiers. - O. You say you are going to send soldiers. IS it to take your letter, or on account of your wrath at what we have said?
C. We are not angry; we only want to send the letter. - O. We made a report to the Prefect of what you told us yesterday, and he has instructed us in reply to, say that he will come to your ship to-day or to-morrow. Why do you want to give us your letter and bring us into mischief?
C. You appear determined not to take it. If, to-morrow, the Prefect does not come, I will certainly send soldiers to Yung Hing. - O. You don’t believe us when we tell you that the Prefect is coming. There is no doubt about it. He is certain to come.
C. In a word, what I have to say is this: if he does not come to-morrow, or send somebody, we will send our letter to him by the hands of our sailors. - O. Very good.
C. We came here with the best intentions ... If anything happens, the responsibility is yours. - O. How can anything happen? If it did, why should we shirk the responsibility of it?
With this these untruthful officials departed with the usual presents of empty bottles. The threat of sending soldiers was, of course, an idle one, as no one even dreamt of carrying it out. However, in the evening I told the people on shore to keep in their houses, as our soldiers were probably going to Yung Hing to-morrow, and I have little doubt that this was reported at once to the Prefect.
Next morning dawned, and no Prefect was visible. As the day wore on the Prince and Count Candiani began to fear that they would have to leave the Corea without having an interview with a Corean official. However, in the afternoon two large junks appeared with the Prefect, the whole of his staff and retinue. He was an old and feeble-looking man, and he came seated in his sedan-chair, which had been lowered into the hold of the junk. He was carried up the gangway by two youths, who held him as he walked along the deck, one under each arm. This gave him the appearance of being dragged, but whether this was a mere affectation of weakness suggested by his ideas of diplomacy, or the actual feebleness of age, I could not say. His staff consisted of three secretaries; a number of confidential advisers, who hedged him round in the cabin to prevent him replying to any question by his own unaided intelligence; one military officer, with half-a-dozen soldiers armed with rusty swords; with a miscellaneous crowd of musicians and hangerson, similar to the tag-rag retinue of Chinese Mandarins.
The staff poured into the Prince’s quarters; some sat on the floor, others stood on the chairs, and all gathered round the officials at the table. The Prince himself was present, speaking in the person of Count Candiani; the Prefect sat opposite, with his advisers behind him, and his secretaries at his feet; and I myself sat next him, with my teacher as scribe. The Coreans were regaled with wines of all kinds, fruits, &c., and, as all Coreans do, they ate and drank everything that was offered to them, and as much more as they could steal.
The Prefect was a courteous and amiable old gentleman. He did his best to keep his staff from begging and pilfering, but it was quite impossible to stop them. The Corean officials and men of the better class are not nearly so well bred as either the Japanese or Chinese. When they deigl! to salute at all they do it in a clumsy manner. They cultivate a grave and staid manner, and seem rather ashamed of any other graces than those comprised in a stolid and apathetic demeanour.
The scene in the Prince’s room, when the interview was going on, was a singular one. A silent conversation, conducted in pen and ink; the silence only broken by the whispered mutterings of the advisers and secretaries as they objected to this, or suggested that; a hot cabin crowded with high-flavoured Coreans intent on eating and drinking; the secretaries in a little ring on the floor preparing questions and answers, or making copies of those already put-all these were elements in a very striking picture. After a number of unimportant and desultory questions, the following conversation took place:-
Candiani. We are going to fire a salute of three guns in your honour; please tell your people not to be afraid. - Prefect. Do not take the trouble to do that.
C. It is a customary ceremony on board our ship. - P. I was not aware of it.
C. May I ask your name, and what office you hold in your country? - P. My name is Li Chi-cheng. I am an official of the Board of Transmission, and Prefect of Yung Hing-foo.
C. This ship is from Italy, in Europe. Some two years ago an Italian merchantvessel was wrecked on the coast of the Island of Quelpart; the whole of her crew were drowned with the exception of one man, whose life was saved, and who was assisted by the people and officials of Quelpart. They gave him clothes to wear and food to eat, so that he was enabled to get back to Italy. For this our Government is deeply grateful, and has therefore commissioned my vessel to come here to thank the Corean officials and people for their kindness. - P. Whenever foreigners are thrown upon our shores by the waves, or are drowned on our coasts, to succour and pity them is a duty prescribed by Corean law. Why is there any special necessity for thanks in this case? Besides, I am not the local authority of Quelpart. Why must you needs come to this place?
C. This ship is a very large one, and there is no safe anchorage for her on the coast of Quelpart; we have on this account come here. - P. In what year and month did you leave Italy, and what countries did you pass on your way here?
C. We left in May last year. We went to Japan, and while we were anchored there we received instructions from our Government to come to Corea on this mission of thanks. - P. May I ask your name, and your rank in the service of your country?
C. Candiani, Capitaine de Fregate. - P. I should like to know the names and rank of the officers under you.
C. There are twelve altogether: Millelire, Lamberti, Bianco, and Acton, Lieutenants, and eight others of lower rank. Having been entrusted with this mission by our Government, I have prepared a despatch conveying the thanks of our country, which I now beg you to receive, to read, and to send on to the Government at Seoul. - P. It is a law of Corea that no local official can address the Court directly, no matter how important the matter may be. The local officials have first to address the Ying Men (Governor of the province) for such decision as he may think fit to come to.
C. Then I beg you to send on this despatch to the Governor, so that it may go up to the capital by the regular official channel. -Po In all matters of importance it is my duty to make a Report to the Governor, and, on this account, lcan{I can} take no step of my own responsibility. Whenever foreign ships come here I have to make inquiries, and having ascertained the purportof{purport of} their visit, I am compelled by law to report to the Governor. Our present conversation I shall have to send On to him.
At this juncture one of the Prefect’s three secretaries seized the sheets of conversation which were already filled up, but Captain Candiani would not allow him to take them. He informed them that they were at liberty to make copies, which they at once proceeded to do, and my Chinese boy was told off to watch them that they did not alter any of the characters.
Candiani. - This is a most excellent law, and my intention in writing you this despatch is that you may thoroughly understand what we have come for. I hope you will peruse it, and send it on. - Prefect. It is a law of our country that its high officials are forbidden to receive any communications from foreign countries unless they have received permission from the King to do so; and as regards the local officials, like myself, á: fortiori we dare not act unauthorizedly.
C. We have come here because we have been ordered to do so. If you do not receive this despatch, I see no way of accomplishing my mission. It is a despatch addressed by me to yourself, and to no other official. -’-Po But why should you particularly address me in such a matter? That I cannot understand.
C. Because you are the Corean official ,nearest{official nearest} the coast. We are anxious that the Governor should, through you, become aware of the good intention of our visit. - P. Well, all I have to say is this: action can only be taken in a matter of this kind with the consent of the Royal Government. There is no Corean law which authorizes me to receive your despatch. I must wait for instructions from the Governor; no other course is open to me.
C. Well you are at liberty to receive or to decline my despatch at your pleasure. Still I must ask you to read it once, so that you may know exactly, and be enabled to report to the Governor, the purport of my visit. I shall then have acquitted myself of the responsibility of my mission.
The following despatch was then handed to the Prefect:-

“To the Prefect of Yung Hing.
“‘Vettor Pisani,’ Yung Hing Bay, Corea, August 14, 1880.


“Two years ago the Italian merchant-ship’ Bianca Portica’ was wrecked on the coast of the Island of Quelpart, and the whole of her crew were lost with the exception of one sailor, F. Santoro. This sailor met with every attention at the hands of the inhabitants, and subsequently the Corean officials gave him clothes and food, and made arrangements for his being sent home to Italy. These facts having come to the knowledge of the Italian Government, they ordered the ‘Vettor Pisani’ to come here. I am very happy that it is now in my power to convey the thanks due to the Corean officials and Government for their conduct in the unfortunate accident I have alluded to. In fulfilling’ this agreeable duty I beg, at the same time, to reimburse all the expenses which may have been incurred in saving the life of the said sailor. In such a matter I am aware that it would be a more direct course to address the officials of Quelpart~ but as there is no good anchorage in that island for a large ship such as this, we have been obliged to come here. I hope, then, that you will have the kindness to convey to the Government of Seoul the thanks which they deserve. I am also well aware that, up to the present time, the Government of Corea have shown a desire to have no relations with foreign countries, and for that reason I cannot address them directly, so I address them through you.
‘We have been here several days, and, in consequence of these Corean laws which interdict all communication with foreigners, we have found it impossible to lay in the provisions which the ship is in need of. The country people who dwell along the shore of our anchorage have told us that by the laws of Corea, we were prohibited from going ashore to procure either fresh water or the shell-fish, which, in every part of the world, are recognized as belonging to the ocean. As we have come here on a mission of thanks, we are desirous to observe your laws strictly; but, at the same time, we feel compelled to make some observations regarding these prohibitions which we beg you to transmit to your superior officers.
“Every person who travels by sea is liable to shipwreck, or is often obliged, by the force of circumstances, to seek shelter in the port most convenient to repair the ship, or to lay in provisions for her crew. This is a fact recognized by every nation of the world, and the right to relief which ships and sailors have is considered to be theirs by the laws of humanity,
“It would be a most vexatious thing if an Italian ship were to put in here in distress in order to repair, or to buy provisions, and found that she could obtain nothing. It is probable that in such a case the crew, constrained by necessity, would employ force to procure the things they were in want of, and would pay no attention to your Corean laws; for,so long as no relations exist between Corea and Italy, so long will it be exceedingly difficult for the Corean authorities to obtain justice in cases where Italian subjects may have broken Corean laws; and, indeed, it is possible they might go unpunished, because they can easily leave your coasts in their ships.
“It would be much more convenient, then, if a Convention dealing with this matter were at once established between Representatives of your country and mine, for it is impossible that the existing state of things can long continue.
“Italy has the strongest desire to be always on good terms with Corea, and a Treaty between the two countries could not be but of the greatest use to you, for your prolonged isolation has had the effect of placing you at this moment in a position I of great inferiority in material resources as compared with other nations. At this moment the two great nations whose territories are contiguous to yours are on the point of going to war, and it will be difficult for Corea to escape the consequences which, sooner or later, such a struggle must entail upon her. Such would not be the case if Corea were a Power recognized by the leading nations of Europe, for they would in that case be interested in the protection of the independence of your country.
“I hope, then that you will bring these consideration to the notice of your Government. In less than two months, in all probability, we shall return here, or proceed to Fusan, in order to know what the intentions of your Government are, so that I may inform the Italian Government to enable them to come to some decision in the matter.

I have, &c.
(Signed)  “CANDIANI

This despatch was read most carefully by the Prefect, and, subsequently, by many of his staff. Some of these, indeed, had spent the time of the interview in reading it surreptitiously. I took good care that they found no difficulty in obtaining stolen peeps at it whilst it was lying on the table. The conversation was then resumed.
Candiani. This despatch is rather a long one; if you would like a copy of it I shall be happy to furnish you with one. What do you say?
The Prefect nodded assent, and the despatch was handed to the three secretaries to be copied.
Prefect. When do you intend to leave the port?
C. Whenever this mission of ours is accomplished we shall leave Corea. If you want a copy of our despatch your people i need not take the trouble to copy it. I will remove the seal from the original, and you can take that.
I had purposely placed the ship’s seal on an outside slip of paper, which I now detached with some show of reverence and burnt. Count Candiani then. handed the despatch to the Prefect, which he received most courteously.
C. I beg that you will report the purport of our mission to the Governor of the province. We will come back in two months to ascertain what his views are. - P. How many men have you under you in this ship?
C. Over 250. You see that our intention in coming here is a good one. China and Russia seem to be. about to go to war, and, if they do, such a war may do great damage to Corea. Corea’s abstention from all intercourse with foreign nations is a danger to her. ~P. What do you mean by danger?
C. The Russian seaports are closed with ice during the winter, and it is possible that the exigencies of war may compel Russia to occupy one of your seaports in order to garrison troops, to accumulate provisions, and to be a convenient basis for warlike operations against China. This is the danger I speak of. - P. I will report your despatch and the whole of this conversation to the Governor.
C. Very good. Tell him that Italy has long desired to be at peace with all the world, and she is especially anxious to be the friend of Corea. Call his attention to the portion of my despatch referring to the difficulties existing between your neighbours, which is the most important part of it, and tell him that if Corea would only make a Treaty with Italy, it would be of the greatest advantage to her. - P. I will. The day is getting late, and I must be going.
C. I am exceedingly, obliged to you for having taken the trouble to come so far, with your honourable years too, to visit our ship. - P. I came here to ascertain the purport of your visit. I was compelled to do so by our laws. Why do you thank me?
C. We have packed up a few cakes and some bottles of wine, our Italian wine, for you, as a slight mark of our appreciation of your visit. - P. Although you honour me with this mark of your kindness, I must tell you that I cannot take them, for I am forbidden by Corean laws to take any gifts without permission.
C. Wine and cakes are of no value. There will be no harm in accepting them from us. You can give them away to your people. - P. For my reception on board I am exceedingly obliged. I am now going. You are too good, really.
The Prefect and his advisers were men of considerable intelligence, as the foregoing conversation will show. In answering or asking the more important questions he invariably consulted his advisers, who closely encircled him throughout the interview. Count Candiani had the same advantage in that he could similarly consult the Prince before requesting me to translate anything. This of course made the interview a lengthy one. As against that a conversation so conducted, and by such a medium, has more permanent interest than one merely viva voce, for, as each party carries away copies of it, it at once becomes a written record, with all the importance attaching to it as such. The copies of the conversation which were made by the secretaries sitting on the floor, sheet by sheet, were compared by myself with the original before the Prefect departed. The original sheets I retained for the Prince.
During the interview, and at its close, the numerous staff which crowded the room regaled themselves with wines, sweetmeats, and cigars. Not one of them showed the respect for Corean laws that was professed by the Prefect, or the same reluctance to take a souvenir of the visit in the shape of an empty bottle or a biscuittin. They wrangled for the possession of the most worthless articles, and many of them slipped up their sleeves the tumblers and glasses they had been drinking out of.
The Prefect and his staff at last left the ship. As before, he was dragged along the deck by his two youths, and literally bundled down the gangway into his sedanchair in the junk. The noisy and hilarious staff poured after him, laden with the trumpery trophies of their visit, with which they had been presented or which they had stolen, all in the highest good spirits. Then came the soldiers and attendants, who had spent the time in wandering about the ship. They were similarly laden with gifts of biscuit, &c., by the sailors, who were much amused at their praiseworthy attempts to devour everything given them, even soap. The Prince gave orders for the steam-launch to tow the Prefect’s two junks to the point where he wished to land. They departed in the midst of much din, for amongst the tatterdemalion followers was a numerous and noisy band of music, which blew and banged in the lustiest and most imposing manner. The spectacle of the two junks, crowded with picturesque retainers, as they were towed away in a chorus of shouting, laughter, Corean drums and trumpets, and, finally, the booming of our big guns, was one of the most diverting and impressive I have ever seen.
The interview lasted nearly four hours, and was, in some respects, an unpleasant and trying ordeal. The filth of even the official class is extreme, and, as an example of what is almost too disgusting to write about, I saw one of the secretaries performing, for the hair of his colleague, the same good offices that one monkey may be observed doing for another in the Zoological Gardens. I had to answer also side questions, which were stuffed into my pockets and hands, whilst the interview was going on, by the Prefect’s too curious followers. However, for such slight trouble and responsibility as the interview entailed on Count Candiani and myself, we were amply rewarded when the Prince kindly told us, after reading the translations I made of the conversation, that one of his main objects in visiting Corea had been most satisfactorily attained.
The Prince had all along taken great pleasure in our intercourse with the Coreans, and watched, with keen interest, every attempt made by myself to communicate with them. The whole of the formal conversations (i.e., in pen and ink) I had with them I translated for his information. To the hundreds of Coreans, rich and poor, who flocked from all parts of the Prefecture to see the foreign ship, he extended a cordial welcome and a generous hospitality, and I have little doubt that the visit of the “Vettor Pisani” to this part of Corea will be pleasantly remembered for many a day by the inhabitants with whom we came in contact.
We paid a final visit to the villages along the shore on the evening of the 15th August, and found that they were well aware of the visit of the Prefect. I was more than ever embarrassed with the number of people who wished to talk with me, and if I stopped anywhere for a minute, the sand all round me was at once covered with characters. We took a cordial farewell of those with whom we had been most intimate.
From first to last we had been on excellent terms with the villagers. They did not sell us any supplies, partly because they had little or nothing to sell, and partly because we had no Corean cash. They said that if they were found by the authorities with a foreign coin in their possession they would be heavily punished, and run some risk of losing their heads. Even Chinese sycee is of little use; it can be easily distinguished from Corean, and the possession of it may entail the most unpleasant consequences.
We had only one unpleasantness with the people. As the incident shows graphically two important traits in the national character, I make no excuse for referring to it. The shores of Yung Hing Bay have many large oyster-beds, and soon after our arrival one or two boats’ crews were sent to gather a supply for the ship’s use. The sailors took the readiest method of gathering these oysters; they took off their clothes, and enjoyed the luxury of a bathe at the same time as they gathered shell-fish. In the course of our evening walk, we were told by the Headmen of the villages that the capture of oysters was forbidden by the Government, and, on inquiry, I could get no reasonable explanation of this mystery. We sent for more oysters next day, which were procured by our sailors in the same manner, and several Coreans entreated them to desist, but they paid no attention. A posse of men came from some of the neighbouring villages, and beat the Coreans who had failed to make our men desist, and, naturally enough, the people who were beaten felt sore about our conduct. The following note from one of them was sent to me:-
“Your intercourse with us during the past few days has shown us that you know what decency is. How comes it that to-day you have forgotten the rules of propriety? Your sailors have taken off all their clothes, both from the upper. and lower parts of their bodies, and gone into the sea. stark naked to get oysters. Why are you so indecent? The capture of shell-fish on the beach is prohibited by our country’s laws. I told your people'this, but they would not hear me; and because they would not hear my people have been. beaten. If your sailors are coming for oysters again, please come and arrange matters.”
The letter was anonymous; but to prevent any danger of disturbance I went on shore to try and elucidate the mystery. I was at a loss to understand why the Government had interdicted oyster-fishing, for the shores were strewn with empty shells. On shore I saw no one, so I wrote the character “clam” on the beach in monster strokes, and in ten minutes fifty people were looking at it. Finally, the writer of the oyster-letter appeared.
Spence. Did you write that letter to me? - Corean. Yes.
S. What do you mean by saying that the Government does not allow the capture of oysters? - C. (after a long pause). Because it is against the law.
S. But what is the reason for the law? - C. (Another pause) Men and women were made to live together in harmony. Harmony cannot exist without courtesy; and courtesy is impossible if men go about without any clothes on. It is a bad custom.
S. What harm is there? - C. If your men go about naked it is impossible for our women to leave the house, and for the past,two days they have had to keep in doors.
S. Then, if I tell our sailors to keep their trousers on, may they take oysters? - C. Certainly; and you will find the best ones by that fir-tree clump, half-a-mile to the west. So the matter was arranged. The incident shows how ready the Coreans are to use the stereotyped phrases “Forbidden by the King,” “Against the law,” &c., to answer inconvenient questions. This , indeed, may be seen in all the conversations I have given already. It also shows what a modest people they are. It was hateful to them to see naked men, and distasteful to write about such a thing even. The poorest classes at work in the fields are always decently clad, and the women never show even their faces to strangers. I must Qnce{once} more refer to the extraordinary familiarity of all classes, the poorest, and the youngest of the poor, with the Chinese written characters. Misunderstandings wer,e{were}, of course, not infrequent, but one character was quickly substituted for another, until the sentence became intelligible. Any person of modest attainments in Chinese, who has a facility in reproducing on the shoJCtest notice the characters he knows, can communicate with any Corean pleasantly and intelligently.
We left our anchorage on the 15th August, and steamed to the southern end of the bay, where, about 12 miles distant from our late position, is situated the lately-opened port of Gensan, the second of the three ports open to the Japanese by Treaty. The third port has not yet been agreed to, as the Japanese wish it to be on the west coast, and in proximity to Seoul. To this the Coreans object. Gensan has only been open four months, and, as yet, there is no trade. The only communication with Japan is one steamer every two months. There are at present 300 settlers, but of these nearly one-third are soldiers or policemen. The houses in the Settlement are being built in the Japanese adaptation of European style which is common in the modern parts of Tokio. The bay ,at this part, is so exposed that the harbour is virtually an open roadstead, and the site of the Settlement does not appear to me to have been wisely selected, either for an anchorage, or as possessed of the best communications with the interior. I understand, however, that the Coreans would not consent to give a site at the Yung Hing end of the bay. A Consul-General is stationed at Gensan, and he is in official correspondence with the Prefect of Te YUan. He has a large staff of student interpreters, who are studying the Corean language. Communication between the new port and the capital is bad: a mere foot-path over high ranges of hills.
At this port, again, I regret to say I have to bear witness to the brutal manner in which the Japanese settlers treat the Coreans. I do not think that the worst class of European rowdies would ever behave so badly to harmless and inoffensive Asiatics as one finds the Japanese in Corea behaving to the Coreans. For example, I saw one Japanese take a pailful of dirty water and throw it into the face of a grave, dignified, and well-dressed Corean, for no other reason than that he was gazing with some interest at the new houses, and probably to make the bystanding Japanese laugh, which they did, heartily. I have little doubt that in a year or two it will be as difficult for foreigners to land in the neighbourhood of Gensan as it is reported to be now in the vicinity of Fusan. I told the Consul-General what I thought of the conduct of his nationals, but he seemed to” think that all Coreans were bad, and that a promiscuous kick could not fail to fall upon a Corean who richly deserved it. He gave the Prince the usual caution about the danger of walking outside the Settlement limits, unless for a short distance with an escort. The Prince himself had some experience of Coreans by this time, and had no fear of the unpleasant consequences of country walks. Accompanied by his Aides-de-camp and myself, he spent three days very pleasantly, shooting, fishing, and roaming about the hills and coasts near Gensan. We were molested by nobody. The demeanour of the inhabitants was the same here as we had found it elsewhere. Fine men physically, much finer than the Chinese or Japanese, they have an upright, bold manner, and the timidity they exhibit at strange sights and sounds is the timidity of ignorance, not of a craven spirit. For the rest, they are exceedingly inquisitive, and filthy in their persons.
We left Corea on the 19th August, and I quitted the “Vettor Pisani” at Tsuruga Bay on the 22nd. I had been twenty-six days on board, and they were days of unvarying kindness from the Prince, his immediate staff, the officers, and everybody on board. It would not be fitting, in an official paper, to repeat even a tithe of the pleasant things that were said to me in grateful recognition of my services before leaving. The Prince, however, told me that he had attained both the ends which he proposed to himself in visiting Corea; and he was good enough to appreciate, in a far too flattering measure, the little I had been able to do for him, by insisting that it was to myself alone that the success and the pleasure of his expedition was due.
The Prince was anxious that I should see something of Japan before returning to China, but as I had heard by telegraph, with extreme pleasure, of my appointment to Chefoo, I took a hurried leave of His Royal Highness, and crossed over to Kobé in fourteen hours, to catch the steamer for Shanghae. I returned on the 1st September.
I attach to this Report a map of Corea, showing the Prince’s route, and copies, in Chinese, of the despatches and conversations I have referred to.

Shanghae, September 9, 1880.

T. Wade , Earl Granville , Spence , Signor di Luca , Clement Allen , Allen , THOMAS FRANCIS WADE , Fourmier , Fourmier , E. Oppert , John Ross , Aston , Siebold , Schufeldt , Fourmier , Candiani , Candiani , Candiani , Candiani , Candiani , Santolo , Fidejoshi , Candiani , Candiani , Candiani , Shên , Candiani , Fourmier , CANDIANI , M. de Luca , Candiani , An Keui-shun , Candiani , Candiani , Candiani , Li Chi-cheng , Candiani , Millelire , Lamberti , Bianco , Acton , Candiani , F. Santoro , CANDIANI , Candiani , Candiani , Candiani , WM. DONALD SPENCE
Peking , Shanghae , Kobe , Shanghae , Kobé , Simonoseki , the Island of Tsushima , Fusan , Fusan , Deer Island , Deer Island , Toraifoo , Torai , Fusan , Tokio , Deer Island , Torai , Quelpart , Fusan , Decima , Fusan , Fusan , Shanghae , Shanghae , Fusan , Fusan , Simonoseki , Nagasaki , Osaka , Fusan , Shanghae , Quelpart , Wusan , Fusan , Fusan , Fusan , Tokio , Peking , Shanghae , Fusan , Fusan , Fusan , Fusan , Yung Hing Bay , Gensan , Yung Hing Bay , Port Lazareff , Yung Hing , Yung Hing , Yung Hing , Yung Hing , Yung Hing , Newchwang , Gensan , Seoul , Gensan , Yung Hing , Yung Hing , Yung Hing-foo , the Island of Quelpart , Seoul , Yung Hing Bay , the Island of Quelpart , Yung Hing Bay , Gensan , Gensan , Tokio , Yung Hing , Gensan , Gensan , Fusan , Gensan , Tsuruga Bay , Chefoo , Kobé , Shanghae , Shanghae
Histoire de l’Eglise dans la Corée
the Treaty of 1615 between Japan and Corea

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