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quills are made into uniform lengths of three
feet and a half, and three layers of the bark,
or quill, inside each other. The greatest
vigilance of the superintendent and his native
assistants, is needed in this stage of the
process ; for much of the value of the spice
depends upon the proper division into qualities,
and, not less, upon the rejection of all very
coarse pieces ; for it is to the interest of the
peelers who are paid by the weight that as
much as possible of the thick be placed in the
quills ; but the master's interest requiires that
as little as possible should be so hidden. The
experiment was once made of paying the
" Chalias " by the day, with a view of securing
better work, but so little was there done in
twelve hours, that it would have been ruinous
to have continued the system. An active
" Chalia," assisted by his wife and child, will
prepare one hundred pounds of spice in a
month, which will produce him one pound
seventeen and sixpence, or seven pounds for
the season, if of four months. Upon this they
will idle away the rest of the year, though in
some few cases other trifling occupations are

The bark having a natural tendency to
curl up, requires but little rolling; and, when
made up on the second day, the pipes are
laid out singly upon cords stretched across
the upper part of the building. There they
remain for two days, when they undergo a
little more rolling up, or " handling," and
are placed on stands outside, exposed to the
action of the hot air, but carefully
sheltered by cocoa-nut leaves from the rays of
the sun.

Three or four days of this open-air drying will
generally suffice. The pipes are then piled up on
light stands of wood for a week or two, when
they are weighed and paid for. Each party of
"Chalias " keep their cuttings separate; and a
good deal of emulation often arises amongst
them as to who shall turn out the greatest
quantity of the finest kind called " first
sort. "

In the peeling-house which I inspected, the
utmost order and decorum prevailed; not a
word was allowed to be spoken by the work-
people. The various headmen, clad in long
white robes, and with high combs in their
hair, passed on from one peeler to another in
silence, pointing with the finger to any defective
work. The only drawback to the agreable
features of the scene, was an old, gaunt
Malay, with musket on shoulder, who paced
the length of the building in grim dignity, to
enforce order, if necessary, and to prevent
pilfering. Still, altogether it was a pleasing
sight; and I could not but contrast the well-
ordered, business-like mode of work pursued
here, with the uproar and confusion I
witnessed the following day in a peeling-house
on a native property, where all appeared to
be masters.

The after-processes of assortment, packing,
and baking, are carried on in the Colombo
establishments; as is also the distillation of
the essential oil of cinnamon from the cuttings
and rejected pieces of bark.


ONE day in the beginning of the year 1803,
Mr. Salt, whose name has since become so
celebrated amongst the discoverers of Egyptian
antiquities, observed before one of the public
rooms of Edinburgh, a great crowd assembled.
For almost every one there exists a
mysterious attraction in the sight of a
number of people, and Mr. Salt, no wiser than
his neighbours, pushed his way, when the
doors were opened into the room. There, on
a sort of stage, he saw a tall and powerfully-
built young man, performing various
gymnastic exercises, and feats of strength. While
this Hercules in tinsel was lifting enormous
weights and jumping from a table over the
heads of twelve men, a pretty, delicate-looking
young woman, was arranging some hydraulic
machines and musical glasses with which the
entertainment was to terminate. As the price
of admission was nominal, she occasionally
also handed round a small wooden bowl, in
order to collect gratuities from the spectators.

Very few of those who where enjoying the
exhibition gave anything; and when the
young woman approached her husband,
and showed him the few coins she had
received, he hastened; to terminate his
performance. Mr. Salt pitied the poor fellow,
and as the young woman was passing, said
to her,

"You forgot to present your bowl for my
contribution.— Here it is."

He slipped a silver coin into her hand.
Both she and her husband thanked him
warmly; the latter in broken English, and
with an Italian accent.

Mr. Salt, who had but just returned from
Rome, replied in Italian; and, perceiving in
the stranger's manner of expressing himself
a degree of refinement not to be expected
from a mountebank, asked him whence he
came, and what was his history?

"Six months ago, sir," replied the man, " if
any one had told me that I should be reduced
to earn my bread by exhibiting my strength
in public, I should have felt greatly inclined to
knock him down. I came to England for
the purpose of making known some hydraulic
machines of my invention; but the spirit
of routine, and the love of ignorance, closed
every avenue against me. Previously, before
losing all my hopes of success, I married
this young girl. Had I been alone in the
world, I verily believe that the bitter destruction
of my expectations would have rendered
me careless of supporting life; but how could
I leave her in miseiy?"

"But why not try to display your really
extraordinary strength and dexterity under

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