Page:Lake Ngami.djvu/146

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.

friend's inhuman proceedings against the Damaras, Jonker told him that if he (Zwartbooi) meddled with his affairs he would pay him such a visit as would put a stop to his devotions and make him cry for quarter.

Within Zwartbooi's territory was a mountain called Tans, where horses might pasture throughout the year without being exposed to the "paarde ziekte," the cruel distemper to which these animals are subject. Almost all the northern Namaquas, Jonker among the rest, are in the habit of sending their horses here during the sickly season.

On one occasion, when Jonker was about to make a "raid" on the Damaras, he sent an express to Zwartbooi for his horses; but this chief, having been apprised of the cause for which the steeds were wanted, refused, under some pretext, to give them up, and, while parleying, the favorable opportunity was lost. It seems Jonker never forgave Zwartbooi this act of treachery, as he called it, and determined, let the risk be whatever it might, never again to put himself in another man's power.

Two days after Zwartbooi's arrival at Schmelen's Hope Mr. Galton returned. He had been successful beyond his most sanguine expectations, for Jonker had not alone formally apologized to Mr. Kolbé for his brutal behavior at Schmelen's Hope, but had expressed regret at his past conduct, and had faithfully promised, for the future, to live in peace and amity with the Damaras. Several important regulations had, moreover, been proposed by my friend and approved of by Jonker and his tribe, with a view of upholding order and justice in the land, but how far they were carried out the sequel will show.

Fresh messengers had also been dispatched to the respective Namaqua and Damara chiefs, with a request that they would attend a general meeting in order to secure to the country a lasting peace. We could not, however, induce them to do this. The late attacks were too fresh in their