Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 2.djvu/350

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chant. He had shown, too, that the African, with all his faults, was open to the influence of reason, truth, and kindness, that he was capable of improvement, and often eager for it: while all that he wrote of such chiefs as Sechele and Sebituane had corroborated the opinion of every unprejudiced observer that the country could produce men of a far higher stamp than was generally believed.

And now he might have rested. Most men would; but not Livingstone. Feeling more than ever, after his experience on the Zambési, the enormous evils of the slave-trade which prevails along its banks; feeling, too, that the best corrective was to go with commerce and civilization as the handmaids of religion, he endeavored, by public speeches at most of our principal places, to increase the interest in the country his return had excited. At Manchester and Liverpool a strong feeling was aroused among the mercantile and cotton-manufacturing communities; and on the side of religion the universities embraced his cause. Perhaps he never created a deeper impression than at Cambridge, where he concluded a telling speech in the Senate-House, before the leading members of the university, in these words: "I know that, in a few years, I shall be cut off in that country which is now open. Do not let it be shut again!—I go back to Africa to try to make open a path for commerce and Christianity; do you carry out the work which I have begun. I leave it with you!"

There was no resisting such an appeal. It went abroad, and Englishmen were stirred. And they were stirred to a depth that impelled them to come forward, as they heard the man and felt what he was. The Government, under Lord Palmerston, made a liberal grant of money, and furnished him besides with a small steamer to aid him in his further researches. To give him influence with the Portuguese, he was appointed H. B. M. consul at Quelimane. An expedition was formed, composed of picked men, who, as well as assisting Livingstone in the direct objects of his undertaking, were to examine and report on scientific matters. This object, as concisely stated in Livingstone's second book, was "to explore the Zambési, its mouths and tributaries, with a view to their being used as highways for commerce and Christianity to pass into the vast interior of Africa." The expedition left England in H. M. S. Pearl, on March 10, 1858; and in the following May the little steamer Ma-Robert—Mrs. Livingstone's Makololo name—was put together and launched in the Kongone mouth of the Zambési.

But, while this was all doing, the universities did not forget Dr. Livingstone's legacy. Oxford, in addition to the Glasgow M. D., recently conferred, had given him the honorary degree of D.C.L.; but she showed much more how she appreciated his merits by uniting with the other universities to promote the religious objects he had in view. His first work in the Ma-Robert was to ascend the Shiré, and discover a beautiful region along its banks to the eastward, which he strongly