Page:A Wayfarer in China.djvu/230

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174
A WAYFARER IN CHINA

for so far inland. In numbers, of course, the missionaries lead, and besides the Roman Catholic mission there are representatives of English, American, and Canadian churches, all working together to give to this out-of-the-way corner of the empire the best of Christian and Western civilization. Their latest and most interesting undertaking is a university on Western lines, the outcome of the combined effort of the Friends', Baptist, and Methodist societies of Chengtu. The economy and efficiency secured by coöperation must be of even less value than the force of such a lesson in Christian harmony to the keen-witted Chinese. Indeed, all over China one is impressed by the wisdom as well as the devotion of most of the mission work. And however it may be in the eastern seaports, where I did not spend much time, inland there seems to be the best of feeling between the different elements of the European community, official, missionary, and merchant. Perhaps because they are a mere handful in an alien people they are forced to see each other's good points, and realize that neither side is hopelessly bad nor impossibly good.

There is quite a large Tartar population in Chengtu, and the Manchu quarter is one of the most picturesque parts of the city, with the charm of a dilapidated village set in untidy gardens and groves of fine trees. Loafing in the streets and doorways are tall, well-built men and women, but they had a rather