Mr. Maynard to Mr. Evarts.
Constantinople, November 20, 1878. (Received December 23.)
Sir: A notable event, albeit little noted, Las just occurred—the coming and going of the Japanese corvette the Seiki, built, fitted, and armed in Japan, and officered and manned by natives of that country. She came about three weeks ago and left yesterday. A paragraph in one of the evening papers illustrates the interest taken in her. She was admired as a beautiful model of naval architecture, equipped and provided with all the matchless taste and finish peculiar to the handiwork of that strange people.
Our naval officers exchanged courtesies with the officers of the Seiki, and some of them found acquaintances made some years ago at the Naval Academy.
This unfamiliar flag has visited the chief maritime countries of Europe, and is now returning to the East. The cruise, I understand, is purely nautical and professional in its intention, with no objects either political or commercial.
The commander with his officers was received by His Imperial Majesty the Sultan, and was decorated by him with one of the imperial orders.
I well remember the Japanese embassy to our country hardly twenty years ago. The difference observable between that diplomatic body and this corps of navigators would, in the ordinary progress of human affairs, imply the lapse of centuries rather than of decades.
I have, &c.,