320 PRIVATE LETTERS OF SIR JAMES BROOKE, K.C.B.
If any person meets with wrong, they are to state it to the governor, or the datus, that a proper inquiry may take place, and the affair be settled ; but if they insist upon settling it themselves, without the consent of the other party, they will be in fault and punished.
These laws and customs will be enforced on all occasions.
This was the commencement of a simple code of laws, written in the year 1842. Before these laws were promulgated, I, on reflection, resolved not to impose them, as they might, in portion, be unjust or inapplicable, through my ignorance of the native customs, and calculated to tie me down in particular cases, which they might not meet. For these reasons, I followed, in preference, the plan of doing justice to the best of my ability in each particular case, adhering, as nearly as possible, to the native law or custom. In this way, we shall gain precedents, which themselves will form the basis of law.
The barbarous custom of cutting off a man's hand is still a law, but, of course, never enforced, whipping being substituted.
END OF VOL. I.
PRINTED BY W. CLOWES AND SONS, STAMFORD STREET AND -CHARING CROSS.PRINTED BY W. CLOWES AND SONS, STAMFORD STREET AND -CHARING CROSS.