Simpkin, Marshall, Hamilton, Kent and Co., Ltd,
Text on page 121
my strange dancing journey through those unwholesome, dark, narrow, tortuous alleys, which last year, with the bright sunshine and without political preoccupations, seemed so picturesque. I passed close by temples which once were famous, now reduced to barracks and in part destroyed by infamous vandalism. It went to my heart. Is all then crumbling in China ? If they destroy the temples what will remain of the old culture ?
a Save what you can! a I implored, addressing the young Government Secretary, Frank Lee, who received me in a miserable, cold room, a room which was once the Yamen of the Viceroy.
Frank Lee has studied in America and his clothes are cut in the pure American style; he smokes a pipe and, naturally, speaks English, but with a strong Yankee accent. Nothing of the Chinee in him, save the colour.
a We shall save all. We have given orders to the soldiers to respect the temples,a replied Frank Lee tranquilly.
This affirmation seemed so energetic, though in no way corresponding to facts, that I thought it best not to add anything further. a And the condition of Canton ? a I asked instead.
a Excellent. For more than a month there have been no revolts in the city. Our Government is still provisional, because we were the first to break away from the empire, but we have given full adhesion to the Republic.
a Canton, for its old hatred for the Manchus, or rather, not so much for the race as the dynasty; was more than ready for a change of regime, and the formation of the Republic was not a surprise to anyone here.a