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Title: Annals and Antiquities of Rajasthan, v. 2 of 3 - or the Central and Western Rajput States of India
Author: Tod, James
Language: English
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                          Transcriber’s Note:

This version of the text cannot represent certain typographical effects.
Italics are delimited with the ‘_’ character as _italic_.

The text is annotated with numerous footnotes, which were numbered
sequentially on each page. On occasion, a footnote itself is annotated
by a note, using an asterisk as the reference. This distinction is
followed here. Those ‘notes on notes’ are given alphabetic sequence (A,
B., etc.), and are positioned directly following the main note.

Since there are over 1500 notes in this volume, they have been gathered
at each chapter’s end, and resequenced for each chapter, using a dot
notation for chapter and page (e.g. 10.4.2).

The notes are a combination of those of the author, and of the editor of
this edition. The latter are enclosed in square brackets.

Finally, the pagination of the original edition, published in the
1820’s, was preserved by Crooke for ease of reference by including those
page numbers in the text, also enclosed in square brackets.

Crooke’s plan for the renovation of the Tod’s original text, including a
discussion of the transliteration of Hindi words, is given in detail in
the Preface. It should be noted that the use of the macron to guide
pronunciation is very unevenly followed, and there was no intent here to
regularize it.

There are a number of references to a map, sometimes referred to as
appearing in Volume I. In this edition, the map appears at the end of
Volume III.

Minor errors, attributable to the printer, have been corrected. Given
the history of the text, it was thought best to leave all orthography as

Please see the transcriber’s note at the end of this text for details
regarding the handling of any textual issues encountered during its

                         ANNALS AND ANTIQUITIES
                              OF RAJASTHAN


  (By permission of Lt.-Col. C. D. Blunt-Mackenzie, R.A.)

                         ANNALS AND ANTIQUITIES

                         RAJPUT STATES OF INDIA


                         LIEUT.-COL. JAMES TOD



                         WILLIAM CROOKE, C.I.E.

                    HON. D.SC. OXON., B.A., F.R.A.I.


                            IN THREE VOLUMES

                                VOL. II

                            HUMPHREY MILFORD
                        OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

                      TORONTO   MELBOURNE   BOMBAY



                          BOOK IV—_continued_

                            ANNALS OF MEWAR

                              CHAPTER 19

  Influence of the hierarchy in Rajputana—Emulation of its
    princes in grants to the priesthood—Analogy between the
    customs of the Hindus, in this respect, and those of the
    ancient people—Superstition of the lower orders—Secret
    influence of the Brahmans on the higher classes—Their
    frauds—Ecclesiastical dues from the land, etc.—The Saivas
    of Rajasthan—The worship and shrine of Eklinga—The
    Jains—Their numbers and extensive power—The temple of
    Nathdwara, and worship of Kanhaiya—The privilege of
    Sanctuary—Predominance of the doctrines of Kanhaiya
    beneficial to Rajput society                                  589

                              CHAPTER 20

  The origin of Kanhaiya or Krishna—Sources of a plurality of
    gods among the Hindus—Allegories respecting Krishna
    elucidated—Songs of Jayadeva celebrating the loves of
    Kanhaiya—The Rasmandal, a mystic dance—Govardhana—Krishna
    anciently worshipped in caves—His conquest of the ‘Black
    serpent’ allegorical of the contests between the Buddhists
    and Vaishnavas—Analogies between the legends of Krishna
    and Western mythology—Festivals of Krishna—Pilgrimage to
    Nathdwara—The seven gods of that temple—Its Pontiff           621

  APPENDIX                                                        644

                              CHAPTER 21

  Importance of mythological history—Aboriginal tribes of
    India—The Rajputs are conquerors—Solar year of the
    Hindus—Opened at the winter solstice—The Vasant, or spring
    festival—Birth of the Sun—Common origin assumed of the
    Rajputs and Getic tribe of Scandinavia—Surya, the sun-god
    of all nations, Thor, Syrus, Sol—Sun-worship—The Aheria,
    or spring-hunt, described—Boar-feast—Phalgun festival—The
    Rajput Saturnalia—Games on horseback—Rites to the
    Manes—Festival of Sitala as guardian of children—Rana’s
    birthday—Phuladola, the Rajput Floralia—Festival of
    Gauri—Compared with the Diana of Egypt—The Isis or Ertha
    of the Suevi—And the Phrygian Cybele—Anniversary of
    Rama—Fête of Kamdeva or Cupid—Little Ganggor—Inundation of
    the capital—Festival of Rambha or Venus—Rajput and Druidic
    rites—Their analogy—Serpent worship—Rakhi, or Festival of
    the bracelet                                                  650

                              CHAPTER 22

  Festivals continued—Adoration of the sword: its Scythic
    origin—The Dasahra, or military festival: its Scythic
    origin—Torans or triumphal arcs—Ganesa of the Rajputs and
    Janus of the Romans—Worship of arms: of the magic brand of
    Mewar, compared with the enchanted sword, Tyrfing, of the
    Edda—Birth of Kumara, the Rajput Mars, compared with the
    Roman divinity—Birth of Ganga: her analogy to
    Pallas—Adoration of the moon—Worship of Lakshmi, or
    Fortune; of Yama, or Pluto—Diwali, or festival of lamps,
    in Arabia, in China, in Egypt, and in India—Annakuta and
    Jaljatra—Festivals sacred to the Ceres and Neptune of the
    Hindus—Festival of the autumnal equinox—Reflections on the
    universal worship of the elements, Fire, Light,
    Water—Festival sacred to Mithras or Vishnu, as the sun—The
    Phallus: its etymology—Rajput doctrine of the
    Triad—Symbols Vishnu, as the sun-god: his messenger
    Garuda, the eagle: his charioteer Aruna, or the dawn—Sons
    of Aruna—Fable analogous to that of Icarus—Rites of Vishnu
    on the vernal equinox and summer solstice—Dolayatra, or
    festival of the ark, compared with the ark of Osiris, and
    Argonautic expedition of the Greeks—Etymology of
    Argonaut—Ethiopia the Lanka of the Hindus—Their sea-king,
    Sagara—Rama, or Ramesa, chief of the Cushite races of
    India—Ramesa of the Rajputs and Rameses of Egypt
    compared—Reflections                                          679

                              CHAPTER 23

  The nicer shades of character difficult to catch—Morals more
    obvious and less changeable than manners—Dissimilarity of
    manners in the various races of Rajasthan—Rajputs have
    deteriorated in manners as they declined in power—Regard
    and deference paid to women in Rajasthan—Seclusion of the
    Females no mark of their degradation—High spirit of the
    Rajput princesses—Their unbounded devotion to their
    husbands—Examples from the chronicles and bardic
    histories—Anecdotes in more recent times—Their
    magnanimity—Delicacy—Courage and presence of mind—Anecdote
    of Sadhu of Pugal and Karamdevi, daughter of the Mohil
    chief—The seclusion of the females increases their
    influence—Historical evidences of its extent                  707

                              CHAPTER 24

  Origin of female immolation—The sacrifice of Sati, the wife
    of Iswara—The motive to it considered—Infanticide—Its
    causes among the Rajputs, the Rajkumars, and the
    Jarejas—The rite of Johar—Female captives in war
    enslaved—Summary of the Rajput character—Their familiar
    habits—The use of opium—Hunting—The use of weapons—Jethis,
    or wrestlers—Armouries—Music—Feats of dexterity—Maharaja
    Sheodan Singh—Literary qualifications of the
    princes—Household economy—Furniture—Dress, etc.               737

                          PERSONAL NARRATIVE

                              CHAPTER 25

  Valley of Udaipur—Departure for Marwar—Encamp on the heights
    of Tus—Resume the march—Distant view of
    Udaipur—Deopur—Zalim Singh—Reach Pallana—Ram Singh
    Mehta—Manikchand—Ex-raja of Narsinghgarh—False policy
    pursued by the British Government in 1817-18—Departure
    from Pallana—Aspect and geological character of the
    country—Nathdwara ridge—Arrival at the city of
    Nathdwara—Visit from the Mukhya of the temple—Departure
    for the village of Usarwas—Benighted—Elephant in a
    bog—Usarwas—A Sannyasi—March to Samecha—The Shera
    Nala—Locusts—Coolness of the air—Samecha—March to Kelwara,
    the capital—Elephant’s pool—Murcha—Kherli—Maharaja Daulat
    Singh—Kumbhalmer—Its architecture, remains, and
    history—March to the ‘Region of Death,’ or Marwar—The
    difficult nature of the country—A party of native
    horsemen—Bivouac in the glen                                  760

                              CHAPTER 26

  The Mers or Meras: their history and manners—The Barwatia of
    Gokulgarh—Forms of outlawry—Ajit Singh, the chief of
    Ghanerao—Plains of Marwar—Chief of Rupnagarh—Anecdote
    respecting Desuri—Contrast between the Sesodias of Mewar
    and the Rathors of Marwar—Traditional history of the
    Rajputs—Ghanerao—Kishandas, the Rana’s envoy—Local
    discrimination between Mewar and Marwar—Ancient feuds—The
    _aonla_ and the _bawal_—Aspect of Marwar—Nadol—Superiority
    of the Chauhan race—Guga of Bhatinda—Lakha of Ajmer: his
    ancient fortress at Nadol—Jain relic there—The Hindu
    ancient arch or vault—Inscriptions—Antiquities at
    Nadol—Indara—Its villages—Pali, a commercial mart—Articles
    of commerce—The bards and genealogists the chief
    carriers—The ‘Hill of Virtue’—Khankhani—Affray between two
    caravans—Barbarous self-sacrifices of the
    Bhats—Jhalamand—March to Jodhpur—Reception _en route_ by
    the Chiefs of Pokaran and Nimaj—Biography of these
    nobles—Sacrifice of Surthan of Nimaj—Encamp at the
    capital—Negotiation for the ceremonies of reception at the
    Court of Jodhpur                                              789

                              CHAPTER 27

  Jodhpur: town and castle—Reception by the Raja—Person and
    character of Raja Man Singh—Visits to the Raja—Events in
    his history—Death of Raja Bhim—Deonath, the high-priest of
    Marwar—His assassination—The acts which succeeded
    it—Intrigues against the Raja—Dhonkal Singh, a pretender
    to the _gaddi_—Real or affected derangement of the
    Raja—Associates his son in the government—Recalled to the
    direction of affairs—His deep and artful policy—Visit to
    Mandor, the ancient capital—Cenotaphs of the
    Rathors—Cyclopean architecture of Mandor—Nail-headed
    characters—The walls—Remains of the palace—Toran, or
    triumphal arch—Than of Thana Pir—Glen of
    Panchkunda—Statues carved from the rock—Gardens at
    Mandor—An ascetic—Entertainment at the palace—The Raja
    visits the envoy—Departure from Jodhpur                       820

                              CHAPTER 28

  Nandla—Bisalpur—Remains of the ancient city—Pachkalia, or
    Bichkalia—Inscription—Pipar—Inscription confirming the
    ancient chronicles of Mewar—Geological details—Legend of
    Lake Sampu—Lakha Phulani—Madreo—Bharunda—Badan Singh—His
    chivalrous fate—Altar to Partap—Indawar—Jat
    cultivators—Stratification of Indawar—Merta—Memory of
    Aurangzeb—Dhonkal Singh—Jaimall, the hero of the
    Rathors—Tributes to his bravery—Description of the city
    and plain of Merta—Cenotaphs—Raja Ajit—His assassination
    by his sons—The consequences of this deed the seeds of the
    Civil Wars of Marwar—Family of Ajit—Curious fact in the
    law of adoption amongst the Rathors—Ram Singh—His
    discourtesy towards his chiefs—Civil War—Defection of the
    Jarejas from Ram Singh—Battle between Ram Singh and Bakhta
    Singh—Defeat of the former, and the extirpation of the
    clan of the Mertias—The Mertia vassal of Mihtri—The field
    of battle described—Ram Singh invites the Mahrattas into
    his territory—Bakhta Singh becomes Raja of Marwar—His
    murder by the Prince of Jaipur—His son, Bijai Singh,
    succeeds—Jai Apa Sindhia and Ram Singh invade Marwar—They
    are opposed by Bijai Singh, who is defeated—He flies to
    Nagor, where he is invested—He cuts through the enemy’s
    camp—Solicits succour at Bikaner and Jaipur—Treachery of
    the Raja of Jaipur—Defeated by the chieftain of
    Rian—Assassination of Apa Sindhia                             850

                              CHAPTER 29

  Mahadaji Sindhia succeeds Jai Apa—Union of the Rathors and
    Kachhwahas, joined by Ismail Beg and Hamdani, against the
    Mahrattas—Battle of Tonga—Sindhia defeated—Ajmer retaken,
    and tributary engagement annulled—Mahadaji Sindhia
    recruits his army, with the aid of De Boigne—The Rajputs
    meet him on the frontier of Jaipur—Jealousies of the
    allies—The Kachhwahas alienated by a scurrilous
    stanza—Battle of Patan—Effects of the Jaipureans’
    treachery, in the defeat of the Rathors—Stanza of the
    Kachhwaha bard—Suggestion of Bijai Singh: his chiefs
    reject it, and the prince prepares for war—Treason of the
    Rathor chief of Kishangarh—The Mahrattas invade
    Marwar—Resolution of the chiefs of Awa and Asop to conquer
    or perish—Rathors encamp on the plains of Merta—Golden
    opportunity lost of destroying the Mahratta army—Fatal
    compliance of the chiefs with the orders of the civil
    minister—Rout of the camp—Heroism of the Rathor clans:
    their destruction—Treachery of the Singwi faction—The
    chief minister takes poison—Reflections on the Rajput
    character, with reference to the protective alliance of
    the British Government—Resumption of journey—Jarau—Cross
    the field of battle—Siyakot, or Mirage, compared with the
    Sarrab of Scripture—Desert of Sogdiana—Hissar—At
    sea—Description of Jarau—Cenotaph of Harakarna
    Das—Alniawas—Rian—The Mountain Mers—Their descent upon
    Rian—Slay its chief—Govindgarh—Chase of a hyaena—Lake of
    Pushkar: geological details—Description of the lake—Its
    legend—Ajaipal, the founder of Ajmer—Bisaldeva, the
    Chauhan king of Ajmer—Places of devotion on the
    ‘Serpent-rock’—Ajmer—View of Daru-l-Khair—Geological
    details—City of Ajmer—Its rising prosperity                   875

                              CHAPTER 30

  Ajmer—Ancient Jain Temple—Its architecture
    analysed—Resemblances between it and the Gothic and
    Saracenic—Fortress of Ajmer—Its lakes—Source of the Luni
    River—Relics of the Chauhan kings—Quit Ajmer—Bhinai: its
    castle—Deolia—Dabla—Banera—Raja Bhim—Sketch of his
    family—His estate—Visit to the castle—Bhilwara—Visit of
    the merchants—Prosperity of the town—Mandal—Its lake—Arja,
    Pur—Mines of Dariba—Canton of the Purawats—Antiquity of
    Pur—The Babas, or infants of Mewar—Rasmi—Reception by the
    peasantry of Mewar—The Suhaila and Kalas—Trout of the
    Banas River—Merta—Visit to the source of the Berach—The
    Udai Sagar—Enter the valley—Appearance of the capital—Site
    of the ancient Ahar—Cenotaphs of the Rana’s
    ancestry—Traditions regarding Ahar—Destroyed by volcanic
    eruption—Remains of antiquity—Oilman’s
    Caravanserai—Oilman’s Bridge—Meeting with the Rana—Return
    to Udaipur                                                    896

  APPENDIX                                                        914

                                BOOK V

                           ANNALS OF MARWAR

                               CHAPTER 1

  The various etymons of Marwar—Authorities for its early
    history—Yati genealogical roll—The Rathor race, who
    inhabit it, descended from the Yavan kings of
    Parlipur—Second roll—Nain Pal—His date—Conquers
    Kanauj—Utility of Rajput genealogies—The Surya Prakas, or
    poetic chronicle of the bard Karnidhan—The Raj Rupak
    Akhyat, or chronicle of Ajit Singh’s minority and
    reign—The Bijai Vilas—The Khyat, a biographical
    treatise—Other sources—The Yavanas and Aswas, or
    Indo-Scythic tribes—The thirteen Rathor families, bearing
    the epithet Kamdhuj—Raja Jaichand, king of Kanauj—The
    extent and splendour of that State before the Muhammadan
    conquest of India—His immense array—Title of
    Mandalika—Divine honours paid to him—Rite of Swayamvara
    undertaken by Jaichand—Its failure and consequences—State
    of India at that period—The four great Hindu
    king of Ghor, invades India—Overcomes the Chauhan king of
    Delhi—Attacks Kanauj—Destruction of that monarchy after
    seven centuries’ duration—Death of Jaichand—Date of this
    event                                                         929

                               CHAPTER 2

  Emigration of Siahji and Setram, grandsons of Jaichand—Their
    arrival in the Western Desert—Sketch of the tribes
    inhabiting the desert to the Indus at that epoch—Siahji
    offers his services to the chief of Kulumad—They are
    accepted—He attacks Lakha Phulani, the famed freebooter of
    Phulra, who is defeated—Setram killed—Siahji marries the
    Solanki’s daughter—Proceeds by Anhilwara on his route to
    Dwarka—Again encounters Lakha Phulani, whom he slays in
    single combat—Massacres the Dabhis of Mewa, and the Gohils
    of Kherdhar—Siahji establishes himself in ‘the land of
    Kher’—The Brahman community of Pali invoke the aid of
    Siahji against the mountaineers—Offer him
    lands—Accepted—Birth of a son—Siahji massacres the
    Brahmans, and usurps their lands—Death of Siahji—Leaves
    three sons—The elder, Asvathama, succeeds—The second,
    Soning, obtains Idar—Ajmall, the third, conquers
    Okhamandala, originates the Vadhel tribe of that
    region—Asvathama leaves eight sons, heads of clans—Duhar
    succeeds—Attempts to recover Kanauj—Failure—Attempts
    Mandor—Slain—Leaves seven sons—Raepal succeeds—Revenges
    his father’s death—His thirteen sons—Their issue spread
    over Maru—Rao Kanhal succeeds—Rao Jalhan—Rao Chhada—Rao
    Thida—Carry on wars with the Bhattis and other
    tribes—Conquest of Bhinmal—Rao Salkha—Rao Biramdeo, killed
    in battle with the Johyas—Clans, their issue—Rao
    Chonda—Conquers Mandor from the Parihar—Assaults and
    obtains Nagor from the Imperialists—Captures Nadol,
    capital of Godwar—Marries the Princess of Mandor—Fourteen
    sons and one daughter, who married Lakha Rana of
    Mewar—Result of this marriage—Feud between Aranyakanwal,
    fourth son of Chonda, and the Bhatti chieftain of
    Pugal—Chonda slain at Nagor—Rao Ranmall succeeds—Resides
    at Chitor—Conquers Ajmer for the Rana—Equalizes the
    weights and measures of Marwar, which he divides into
    departments—Rao Ranmall slain—Leaves twenty-four sons,
    whose issue constitute the present frerage of Marwar—Table
    of clans                                                      940

                               CHAPTER 3

  Accession of Rao Jodha—Transfers the seat of government from
    Mandor to the new capital Jodhpur—The cause—The
    Vanaprastha, or Druids of India—Their penances—The
    fourteen sons of Jodha—New settlements of Satalmer, Merta,
    Bikaner—Jodha dies—Anecdotes regarding him—His personal
    appearance—Rapid increase of the Rathor race—Names of
    tribes displaced thereby—Accession of Rao Suja—First
    conflict of the Rathors with the Imperialists—Rape of the
    Rathor virgins at Pipar—Gallantry of Suja—His
    death—Issue—Succeeded by his grandson Rao Ganga—His uncle
    Saga contests the throne—Obtains the aid of the Lodi
    Pathans—Civil War—Saga slain—Babur’s invasion of
    India—Rana Sanga generalissimo of the Rajputs—Rao Ganga
    sends his contingent under his grandson Raemall—Slain at
    Bayana—Death of Ganga—Accession of Rao Maldeo—Becomes the
    first amongst the princes of Rajputana—Reconquers Nagor
    and Ajmer from the Lodis, Jalor and Siwana from the
    Sandhals—Reduces the rebellious allodial vassals—Conquest
    from Jaisalmer—The Maldots—Takes Pokaran—Dismantles
    Satalmer—His numerous public works—Cantons belonging to
    Marwar enumerated—Maldeo resumes several of the great
    estates—Makes a scale of rank hereditary in the line of
    Jodha—Period favourable to Maldeo’s consolidation of his
    power—His inhospitality to the Emperor Humayun—Sher Shah
    invades Marwar—Maldeo meets him—Danger of the Imperial
    army—Saved by stratagem from destruction—Rathor army
    retreats—Devotion of the two chief clans—Their
    destruction—Akbar invades Marwar—Takes Merta and
    Nagor—Confers them on Rae Singh of Bikaner—Maldeo sends
    his second son to Akbar’s court—Refused to pay homage in
    person—The emperor gives the farman of Jodhpur to Rae
    Singh—Rao Maldeo besieged by Akbar—Defends Jodhpur—Sends
    his son Udai Singh to Akbar—His reception—Receives the
    title of Raja—Chandarsen maintains Rathor
    independence—Retires to Siwana—Besieged, and slain—His
    sons—Maldeo witnesses the subjection of his kingdom—His
    death—His twelve sons                                         947

                               CHAPTER 4

  Altered conditions of the Princes of Marwar—Installation of
    Raja Udai Singh—Not acknowledged by the most powerful
    clans until the death of Chandarsen—Historical
    retrospect—The three chief epochs of Marwar history, from
    the conquest to its dependence on the empire—Order of
    succession changed, with change of capital, in Mewar,
    Amber, and Marwar—Branches to which the succession is
    confined—Dangers of mistaking these—Examples—Jodha
    regulates the fiefs—The eight great nobles of Marwar—These
    regulations maintained by Maldeo, who added to the
    secondary fiefs—Fiefs perpetuated in the elder
    branches—The brothers and sons of Jodha—Various
    descriptions of fiefs—Antiquity of the Rajput feudal
    system—Akbar maintains it—Paternity of the Rajput
    sovereigns not a fiction, as in Europe—The lowest Rajput
    claims kindred with the sovereign—The name Udai Singh
    fatal to Rajputana—Bestows his sister Jodh Bai on
    Akbar—Advantages to the Rathors of this marriage—Numerous
    progeny of Udai Singh—Establishes the fiefs of Govindgarh
    and Pisangan—Kishangarh and Ratlam—Remarkable death of
    Raja Udai Singh—Anecdotes—Issue of Udai Singh—Table of
    descent                                                       960

                               CHAPTER 5

  Accession of Raja Sur—His military talents obtain him
    honours—Reduces Rao Surthan of Sirohi—Commands against the
    King of Gujarat—Battle of Dhanduka gained by the
    Raja—Wealth and honours acquired—Gifts to the
    bards—Commanded against Amra Balecha—Battle of the
    Rewa—Slays the Chauhan—Fresh honours—Raja Sur and his son
    Gaj Singh attend the court of Jahangir—The heir of Marwar
    invested with the sword by the Emperor’s own
    hands—Escalade of Jalor—Raja Gaj attends Prince Khurram
    against the Rana of Mewar—Death of Raja Sur—Maledictory
    pillar erected on the Nerbudda—The Rathor chiefs’
    dissatisfaction at their long detention from their native
    land—Raja Sur embellishes Jodhpur—His issue—Accession of
    Raja Gaj—Invested with the Raj of Burhanpur—Made Viceroy
    of the Deccan—The compliment paid to his contingent—His
    various actions—Receives the title of Dalthaman, or
    ‘barrier of the host’—Causes of Rajput influence on the
    Imperial succession—The Sultans Parvez and Khurram, sons
    of Rajput Princesses—Intrigues of the Queens to secure the
    succession to their immediate offspring—Prince Khurram
    plots against his brother—Endeavours to gain Raja Gaj, but
    fails—The Prince causes the chief adviser of Raja Gaj to
    be assassinated—Raja Gaj quits the royal army—Prince
    Khurram assassinates his brother Parvez—Proceeds to depose
    his father Jahangir, who appeals to the fidelity of the
    Rajput Princes—They rally round the throne, and encounter
    the rebel army near Benares—The Emperor slights the Rathor
    Prince, which proves nearly fatal to his cause—The rebels
    defeated—Flight of Prince Khurram—Raja Gaj slain on the
    Gujarat frontier—His second son, Raja Jaswant,
    succeeds—Reasons for occasional departure from the rules
    of primogeniture amongst the Rajputs—Amra, the elder,
    excluded the succession—Sentence of banishment pronounced
    against him—Ceremony of Desvata, or ‘exile,’
    described—Amra repairs to the Mogul court—Honours
    conferred upon him—His tragical death                         969

                               CHAPTER 6

  Raja Jaswant mounts the _gaddi_ of Marwar—His mother a
    princess of Mewar—He is a patron of science—His first
    service in Gondwana—Prince Dara appointed regent of the
    empire by his father, Shah Jahan—Appoints Jaswant viceroy
    in Malwa—Rebellion of Aurangzeb, who aspires to the
    crown—Jaswant appointed generalissimo of the army sent to
    oppose him—Battle of Fatehabad, a drawn battle—Jaswant
    retreats—Heroism of Rao Ratna of Ratlam—Aurangzeb proceeds
    towards Agra—Battle of Jajau—Rajputs overpowered—Shah
    Jahan deposed—Aurangzeb, now emperor, pardons Jaswant, and
    summons him to the presence—Commands him to join the army
    formed against Shuja—Battle of Kajwa—Conduct of
    Jaswant—Betrays Aurangzeb and plunders his camp—Forms a
    junction with Dara—This prince’s inactivity—Aurangzeb
    invades Marwar—Detaches Jaswant from Dara—Appointed
    viceroy of Gujarat—Sent to serve in the Deccan—Enters into
    Sivaji’s designs—Plans the death of Shaista Khan, the
    king’s lieutenant—Obtains this office—Superseded by the
    prince of Amber—Reappointed to the army of the
    Deccan—Stimulates Prince Muazzam to rebellion—Superseded
    by Dalir Khan—Jaswant tries to cut him off—Removed from
    the Deccan to Gujarat—Outwitted by the king—Ordered
    against the rebellious Afghans of Kabul—Jaswant leaves his
    son, Prithi Singh, in charge of Jodhpur—Prithi Singh
    commanded to court by Aurangzeb, who gives him a poisoned
    robe—His death—Character—The tidings reach Jaswant at
    Kabul, and cause his death—Character of Jaswant—Anecdotes
    illustrative of Rathor character—Nahar Khan—His exploits
    with the tiger, and against Surthan of Sirohi                 979

                               CHAPTER 7

  The pregnant queen of Jaswant prevented from becoming
    Sati—Seven concubines and one Rani burn with him—The
    Chandravati Rani mounts the pyre at Mandor—General grief
    for the loss of Jaswant—Posthumous birth of Ajit—Jaswant’s
    family and contingent return from Kabul to
    Marwar—Intercepted by Aurangzeb, who demands the surrender
    of the infant Ajit—The chiefs destroy the females and
    defend themselves—Preservation of the infant prince—The
    Indhas take Mandor—Expelled—Aurangzeb invades Marwar,
    takes and plunders Jodhpur, and sacks all the large
    towns—Destroys the Hindu temples, and commands the
    conversion of the Rathor race—Impolicy of the
    measure—Establishes the Jizya, or tax on infidels—The
    Rathors and Sesodias unite against the king—Events of the
    war from the Chronicle—The Mertia clan oppose the entire
    royal army, but are cut to pieces—The combined Rajputs
    fight the Imperialists at Nadol—Bhim, the son of the Rana,
    slain—Prince Akbar disapproves the war against the
    Rajputs—Makes overtures—Coalition—The Rajputs declare
    Akbar emperor—Treachery and death of Tahawwur Khan—Akbar
    escapes, and claims protection from the Rajputs—Durga
    conducts Prince Akbar to the Deccan—Soning, brother of
    Durga, leads the Rathors—Conflict at Jodhpur—Affair at
    Sojat—The cholera morbus appears—Aurangzeb offers
    peace—The conditions accepted by Soning—Soning’s
    death—Aurangzeb annuls the treaty—Prince Azam left to
    carry on the war—Muslim garrisons throughout Marwar—The
    Rathors take post in the Aravalli hills—Numerous
    encounters—Affairs of
    Sojat—Charai—Jaitaran—Renpur—Pali—Immense sacrifice of
    lives—The Bhattis join the Rathors—The Mertia chief
    assassinated during a truce—Further encounters—Siwana
    assaulted—The Muslim garrison put to the sword—Nur Ali
    abducts the Asani damsels—Is pursued and killed—Muslim
    garrison of Sambhar destroyed—Jalor capitulates to the
    Rajputs                                                       990

                               CHAPTER 8

  The clans petition to see the young Raja—Durjan Sal of Kotah
    joins the Rathor cause—They proceed to Abu—Are introduced
    to Ajit, who is conveyed to Awa, and makes a tour to all
    the chieftainships—Consternation of Aurangzeb—He sets up a
    pretender to Jodhpur—The Rathors and Haras drive the
    Imperialists from Marwar—They carry the war abroad—Storm
    of Pur Mandal—The Hara prince slain—Durgadas returns from
    the Deccan—Defeats Safi Khan, governor of Ajmer, who is
    disgraced by the king—Safi Khan attempts to circumvent
    Ajit by negotiation—His failure and disgrace—Rebellion in
    Mewar—The Rathors support the Rana—Aurangzeb negotiates
    for the daughter of Prince Akbar left in Marwar—Ajit again
    driven for refuge into the hills—Affair at Bijapur—Success
    of the Rathors—Aurangzeb’s apprehension for his
    granddaughter—The Rana sends the coco-nut to Ajit, who
    proceeds to Udaipur, and marries the Rana’s
    niece—Negotiations for peace renewed—Terminate—The
    surrender of the princess—Jodhpur restored—Magnanimity of
    Durgadas—Ajit takes possession—Ajit again driven from his
    capital—Afflictions of the Hindu race—A son born to Ajit,
    named Abhai Singh—His horoscope—Battle of Dunara—The
    viceroy of Lahore passes through Marwar to Gujarat—Death
    of Aurangzeb—Diffuses joy—Ajit attacks
    Jodhpur—Capitulation—Dispersion and massacre of the king’s
    troops—Ajit resumes his dominions—Azam, with the title of
    Bahadur Shah, mounts the throne—Battle of Agra—The king
    prepares to invade Marwar—Arrives at Ajmer—Proceeds to
    Bhavi Bilara—Sends an embassy to Ajit, who repairs to the
    imperial camp—Reception—Treacherous conduct of the
    emperor—Jodhpur surprised—Ajit forced to accompany the
    emperor to the Deccan—Discontent of the Rajas—They abandon
    the king, and join Rana Amra at Udaipur—Triple
    alliance—Ajit appears before Jodhpur, which capitulates on
    honourable terms—Ajit undertakes to replace Raja Jai Singh
    on the _gaddi_ of Amber—Battle of Sambhar, Ajit
    victorious—Amber abandoned to Jai Singh—Ajit attacks
    Bikaner—Redeems Nagor—The Rajas threatened by the
    king—Again unite—The king repairs to Ajmer—The Rajas join
    him—Receive farmans for their dominions—Ajit makes a
    pilgrimage to Kurukshetra—Reflections on the thirty years’
    war waged by the Rathors against the empire for
    independence—Eulogium on Durgadas                            1007

                               CHAPTER 9

  Ajit commanded to reduce Nahan and the rebels of the Siwalik
    mountains—The emperor dies—Civil wars—Ajit nominated
    viceroy of Gujarat—Ajit commanded to send his son to
    court—Daring attack on the chief of Nagor, who is
    slain—Retaliated—The king’s army invades Marwar—Jodhpur
    invested—Terms—Abhai Singh sent to court—Ajit proceeds to
    Delhi—Coalesces with the Sayyid ministry of the king—Gives
    a daughter in marriage to the emperor—Returns to
    Jodhpur—Repeal of the Jizya—Ajit proceeds to his
    viceroyalty of Gujarat—Settles the province—Worships at
    Dwarka—Returns to Jodhpur—The Sayyids summon him to
    court—The splendour of his train—Leagues with the
    Sayyids—The emperor visits Ajit—Portents—Husain Ali
    arrives from the Deccan—Consternation of the opponents of
    the Sayyids and Ajit—Ajit blockades the palace with his
    Rathors—The emperor put to death—Successors—Muhammad
    Shah—He marches against Amber—Its Raja claims sanctuary
    with Ajit—Obtains the grant of Ahmadabad—Returns to
    Jodhpur—Ajit unites his daughter to the prince of
    Amber—The Sayyids assassinated—Ajit warned of his
    danger—Seizes on Ajmer—Slays the governor—Destroys the
    mosques, and re-establishes the Hindu rites—Ajit declares
    his independence—Coins in his own name—Establishes weights
    and measures, and his own courts of justice—Fixes the
    gradations of rank amongst his chiefs—The Imperialists
    invade Marwar—Abhai Singh heads thirty thousand Rathors to
    oppose them—The king’s forces decline battle—The Rathors
    ravage the Imperial provinces—Abhai Singh obtains the
    surname of Dhonkal, or exterminator—Returns to
    Jodhpur—Battle of Sambhar—Ajit gives sanctuary to Churaman
    Jat, founder of Bharatpur—The emperor puts himself at the
    head of all his forces to avenge the defeat of
    Sambhar—Ajmer invested—Its defence—Ajit agrees to
    surrender Ajmer—Abhai Singh proceeds to the Imperial
    camp—His reception—His arrogant bearing—Murder of Ajit by
    his son—Infidelity of the bard—Blank leaf of the Raj
    Rupaka, indicative of this event—Extract from that
    chronicle—Funereal rites—Six queens and fifty-eight
    concubines determine to become Satis—Expostulations of the
    Nazir, bards, and purohits—They fail—Procession—Rite
    concluded—Reflections on Ajit’s life and history             1020

                              CHAPTER 10

  The parricidal murder of Ajit, the cause of the destruction
    of Marwar—The parricide, Abhai Singh, invested as Raja by
    the emperor’s own hand—He returns from court to
    Jodhpur—His reception—He distributes gifts to the bards
    and priests—The bards of Rajputana—Karna, the poetic
    historian of Marwar—Studies requisite to form a
    Bardai—Abhai Singh reduces Nagor—Bestows it in appanage
    upon his brother Bakhta—Reduces the turbulent
    allodialists—Commanded to court—Makes a tour of his
    domain—Seized by the small-pox—Reaches the court—Rebellion
    of the viceroy of Gujarat, and of Prince Jangali in the
    Deccan—Picture of the Mogul court at this time—The _bira_
    of foreign service against the rebels described—Refused by
    the assembled nobles—Accepted by the Rathor prince—He
    visits Ajmer, which he garrisons—Meeting at Pushkar with
    the Raja of Amber—Plan the destruction of the empire—At
    Merta is joined by his brother Bakhta Singh—Reaches
    Jodhpur—The Kher, or feudal levies of Marwar,
    assemble—Consecration of the guns—The Minas carry off the
    cattle of the train—Rajput contingents enumerated—Abhai
    reduces the Mina strongholds in Sirohi—The Sirohi prince
    submits, and gives a daughter in marriage as a
    peace-offering—The Sirohi contingent joins Abhai
    Singh—Proceeds against Ahmadabad—Summons the viceroy to
    surrender—Rajput council of war—Bakhta claims to lead the
    van—The Rathor prince sprinkles his chiefs with saffron
    water—Sarbuland’s plan of defence—His guns manned by
    Europeans—His bodyguard of European musketeers—The
    storm—Victory gained by the Rajputs—Surrender of
    Sarbuland—He is sent prisoner to the emperor—Abhai Singh
    governs Gujarat—Rajput contingents enumerated—Conclusion
    of the chronicles, the Raj Rupaka and Surya Prakas—Abhai
    Singh returns to Jodhpur—The spoils conveyed from Gujarat    1035

                              CHAPTER 11

  Mutual jealousies of the brothers—Abhai Singh dreads the
    military fame of Bakhta—His policy—Prompted by the bard
    Karna, who deserts Jodhpur for Nagor—Scheme laid by Bakhta
    to thwart his brother—Attack on Bikaner by Abhai
    Singh—Singular conduct of his chiefs, who afford supplies
    to the besieged—Bakhta’s scheme to embroil the Amber
    prince with his brother—His overture and advice to attack
    Jodhpur in the absence of his brother—Jai Singh of
    Amber—His reception of this advice, which is discussed and
    rejected in a full council of the nobles of Amber—The
    envoy of Bakhta obtains an audience of the prince of
    Amber—Attains his object—His insulting letter to Raja
    Abhai Singh—The latter’s laconic reply—Jai Singh calls out
    the Kher, or feudal army of Amber—Obtains foreign
    allies—One hundred thousand men muster under the walls of
    his capital—March to the Marwar frontier—Abhai Singh
    raises the siege of Bikaner—Bakhta’s strange
    conduct—Swears his vassals—Marches with his personal
    retainers only to combat the host of Amber—Battle of
    Gangwana—Desperate onset of Bakhta Singh—Destruction of
    his band—With sixty men charges the Amber prince, who
    avoids him—Eulogy of Bakhta by the Amber bards—Karna the
    bard prevents a third charge—Bakhta’s distress at the loss
    of his men—The Rana mediates a peace—Bakhta loses his
    tutelary divinity—Restored by the Amber prince—Death of
    Abhai Singh—Anecdotes illustrating his character             1047

                              CHAPTER 12

  Ram Singh succeeds—His impetuosity of temper—His uncle,
    Bakhta Singh, absents himself from the rite of
    inauguration—Sends his nurse as proxy—Construed by Ram
    Singh as an insult—He resents it, and resumes the fief of
    Jalor—Confidant of Ram Singh—The latter insults the chief
    of the Champawats, who withdraws from the court—His
    interview with the chief bard—Joins Bakhta Singh—The chief
    bard gives his suffrage to Bakhta—Civil war—Battle of
    Merta—Ram Singh defeated—Bakhta Singh assumes the
    sovereignty—The Bagri chieftain girds him with the
    sword—Fidelity of the Purohit to the ex-prince, Ram
    Singh—He proceeds to the Deccan to obtain aid of the
    Mahrattas—Poetical correspondence between Raja Bakhta and
    the Purohit—Qualities, mental and personal, of Bakhta—The
    Mahrattas threaten Marwar—All the clans unite round
    Bakhta—He advances to give battle—Refused by the
    Mahrattas—He takes post at the pass of Ajmer—Poisoned by
    the queen of Amber—Bakhta’s character—Reflections on the
    Rajput character—Contrasted with that of the European
    nobles in the dark ages—Judgment of the bards on
    crimes—Improvised stanza on the princes of Jodhpur and
    Amber—Anathema of the Sati, wife of Ajit—Its
    fulfilment—Opinions of the Rajput on such inspirations       1054

                              CHAPTER 13

  Accession of Bijai Singh—Receives at Merta the homage of his
    chiefs—Proceeds to the capital—The ex-prince Ram Singh
    forms a treaty with the Mahrattas and the
    Kachhwahas—Junction of the confederates—Bijai Singh
    assembles the clans on the plains of Merta—Summoned to
    surrender the _gaddi_—His reply—Battle—Bijai Singh
    defeated—Destruction of the Rathor Cuirassiers—Ruse de
    guerre—Bijai Singh left alone—His flight—Eulogies of the
    bard—Fortresses surrender to Ram Singh—Assassination of
    the Mahratta commander—Compensation for the murder—Ajmer
    surrendered—Tribute or Chauth established—Mahrattas
    abandon the cause of Ram Singh—Couplet commemorative of
    this event—Cenotaph to Jai Apa—Ram Singh dies—His
    character—Anarchy reigns in Marwar—The Rathor
    oligarchy—Laws of adoption in the case of Pokaran
    fief—Insolence of its chief to his prince, who entertains
    mercenaries—This innovation accelerates the decay of
    feudal principles—The Raja plans the diminution of the
    aristocracy—The nobles confederate—Gordhan Khichi—His
    advice to the prince—Humiliating treaty between the Raja
    and his vassals—Mercenaries disbanded—Death of the
    prince’s Guru or priest—His prophetic words—Kiryakarma or
    funeral rites, made the expedient to entrap the chiefs,
    who are condemned to death—Intrepid conduct of Devi Singh
    of Pokaran—His last words—Reflections on their defective
    system of government—Sacrifice of the law of
    primogeniture—Its consequences—Sabhal Singh arms to avenge
    his father’s death—Is slain—Power of the nobles
    checked—They are led against the robbers of the
    desert—Umarkot seized from Sind—Godwar taken from
    Mewar—Marwar and Jaipur unite against the Mahrattas, who
    are defeated at Tonga—De Boigne’s first appearance—Ajmer
    recovered by the Rathors—Battles of Patan and Merta—Ajmer
    surrenders—Suicide of the governor—Bijai Singh’s concubine
    adopts Man Singh—Her insolence alienates the nobles, who
    plan the deposal of the Raja—Murder of the concubine—Bijai
    Singh dies                                                   1060

                              CHAPTER 14

  Raja Bhim seizes upon the _gaddi_—Discomfiture of his
    competitor, Zalim Singh—Bhim destroys all the other
    claimants to succession, excepting Man Singh—Blockaded in
    Jalor—Sallies from the garrison for supplies—Prince Man
    heads one of them—Incurs the risk of capture—Is preserved
    by the Ahor chief; Raja Bhim offends his nobles—They
    abandon Marwar—The fief of Nimaj attacked—Jalor reduced to
    the point of surrender—Sudden and critical death of Raja
    Bhim—Its probable cause—The Vaidyas, or ‘cunning-men,’ who
    surround the prince—Accession of Raja Man—Rebellion of
    Sawai Singh of Pokaran—Conspiracy of Chopasni—Declaration
    of the pregnancy of a queen of Raja Bhim—Convention with
    Raja Man—Posthumous births—Their evil consequences in
    Rajwara—A child born—Sent off by stealth to Pokaran, and
    its birth kept a secret—Named Dhonkal—Raja Man evinces
    indiscreet partialities—Alienates the Champawats—Birth of
    the posthumous son of Raja Bhim promulgated—The chiefs
    call on Raja Man to fulfil the terms of the convention—The
    mother disclaims the child—The Pokaran chief sends the
    infant Dhonkal to the sanctuary of Abhai Singh of
    Khetri—Sawai opens his underplot—Embroils Raja Man with
    the courts of Amber and Mewar—He carries the pretender
    Dhonkal to Jaipur—Acknowledged and proclaimed as Raja of
    Marwar—The majority of the chiefs support the
    pretender—The Bikaner prince espouses his cause—Armies
    called in the field—Baseness of Holkar, who deserts Raja
    Man—The armies approach—Raja Man’s chiefs abandon him—He
    attempts suicide—Is persuaded to fly—He gains
    Jodhpur—Prepares for defence—Becomes suspicious of all his
    kin—Refuses them the honour of defending the castle—They
    join the allies, who invest Jodhpur—The city taken and
    plundered—Distress of the besiegers—Amir Khan’s conduct
    causes a division—His flight from Marwar—Pursued by the
    Jaipur commander—Battle—Jaipur force destroyed, and the
    city invested—Dismay of the Raja—Breaks up the siege of
    Jodhpur—Pays £200,000 for a safe passage to Jaipur—The
    spoils of Jodhpur intercepted by the Rathors, and wrested
    from the Kachhwahas—Amir Khan formally accepts service
    with Raja Man, and repairs to Jodhpur with the four Rathor
    chiefs                                                       1077

                              CHAPTER 15

  Amir Khan’s reception at Jodhpur—Engages to extirpate
    Sawai’s faction—Interchanges turbans with the Raja—The
    Khan repairs to Nagor—Interview with Sawai—Swears to
    support the Pretender—Massacre of the Rajput
    chiefs—Pretender flies—The Khan plunders Nagor—Receives
    £100,000 from Raja Man—Jaipur overrun—Bikaner
    attacked—Amir Khan obtains the ascendancy in
    Marwar—Garrisons Nagor with his Pathans—Partitions lands
    amongst his chiefs—Commands the salt lakes of Nawa and
    Sambhar—The minister Induraj and high priest Deonath
    assassinated—Raja Man’s reason affected—His
    seclusion—Abdication in favour of his son Chhattar
    Singh—He falls the victim of illicit pursuits—Madness of
    Raja Man increased—Its causes—Suspicions of the Raja
    having sacrificed Induraj—The oligarchy, headed by Salim
    Singh of Pokaran, son of Sawai, assumes the charge of the
    government—Epoch of British universal supremacy—Treaty
    with Marwar framed during the regency of Chhattar
    Singh—The oligarchy, on his death, offer the _gaddi_ of
    Marwar to the house of Idar—Rejected—Reasons—Raja Man
    entreated to resume the reins of power—Evidence that his
    madness was feigned—The Raja dissatisfied with certain
    stipulations of the treaty—A British officer sent to
    Jodhpur—Akhai Chand chief of the civil
    administration—Salim Singh of Pokaran chief
    minister—Opposition led by Fateh Raj—British troops
    offered to be placed at the Raja’s disposal—Offer
    rejected—Reasons—British Agent returns to Ajmer—Permanent
    Agent appointed to the court of Raja Man—Arrives at
    Jodhpur—Condition of the capital—Interview’s with the
    Raja—Objects to be attained described—Agent leaves
    Jodhpur—General sequestrations of the fiefs—Raja Man
    apparently relapses into his old apathy—His deep
    dissimulation—Circumvents and seizes the faction—Their
    wealth sequestrated—Their ignominious death—Immense
    resources derived from sequestrations—Raja Man’s thirst
    for blood—Fails to entrap the chiefs—The Nimaj chief
    attacked—His gallant defence—Slain—The Pokaran chief
    escapes—Fateh Raj becomes minister—Raja Man’s speech to
    him—Nimaj attacked—Surrender—Raja Man’s infamous violation
    of his pledge—Noble conduct of the mercenary
    commander—Voluntary exile of the whole aristocracy of
    Marwar—Received by the neighbouring princes—Man’s gross
    ingratitude to Anar Singh—The exiled chiefs apply to the
    British Government, which refuses to mediate—Raja Man
    loses the opportunity of fixing the constitution of
    Marwar—Reflections                                           1089

                              CHAPTER 16

  Extent and population of Marwar—Classification of
    inhabitants—Jats—Rajputs, sacerdotal, commercial, and
    servile tribes—Soil—Agricultural products—Natural
    productions—Salt lakes—Marble and limestone quarries—Tin,
    lead, and iron mines—Alum—Manufactures—Commercial
    marts—Transit trade—Pali, the emporium of Western
    India—Mercantile classes—Khadataras and Oswals—Kitars, or
    caravans—Imports and exports enumerated—Charans, the
    guardians of the caravans—Commercial decline—Causes—Opium
    monopoly—Fairs of Mundwa and Balotra—Administration of
    justice—Punishments—Raja Bijai Singh’s clemency to
    prisoners, who are maintained by private charity—Gaol
    deliveries on eclipses, births, and accession of
    princes—Sagun, or ordeals: fire, water, burning
    oil—Panchayats—Fiscal revenues and regulations—Batai, or
    corn-rent—Shahnahs and Kanwaris—Taxes—Anga, or capitation
    tax—Ghaswali, or pasturage—Kewari, or door tax; how
    originated—Sair, or imposts; their amount—Dhanis, or
    collectors—Revenues from the salt-lakes—Tandas, or
    caravans engaged in this trade—Aggregate revenues—Military
    resources—Mercenaries—Feudal quotas—Schedule of
    feoffs—Qualification of a cavalier                           1104

                                BOOK VI

                           ANNALS OF BIKANER

                               CHAPTER 1

  Origin of the State of Bikaner—Bika, the founder—Condition
    of the aboriginal Jats or Getes—The number and extensive
    diffusion of this Scythic race, still a majority of the
    peasantry in Western Rajputana, and perhaps in Northern
    India—Their pursuits pastoral, their government
    patriarchal, their religion of a mixed kind—List of the
    Jat cantons of Bikaner at the irruption of Bika—Causes of
    the success of Bika—Voluntary surrender of the supremacy
    of the Jat elders to Bika—Conditions—Characteristic of the
    Getic people throughout India—Proofs—Invasion of the
    Johyas by Bika and his Jat subjects—Account of the
    Johyas—Conquered by Bika—He wrests Bagor from the Bhattis,
    and founds Bikaner, the capital, A.D. 1489—His uncle
    Kandhal makes conquests to the north—Death of Bika—His son
    Nunkaran succeeds—Makes conquests from the Bhattis—His son
    Jeth succeeds—Enlarges the power of Bikaner—Rae Singh
    succeeds—The Jats of Bikaner lose their liberties—The
    State rises to importance—Rae Singh’s connexion with
    Akbar—His honours and power—The Johyas revolt and are
    exterminated—Traditions of Alexander the Great amongst the
    ruins of the Johyas—Examined—The Punia Jats vanquished by
    Ram Singh the Raja’s brother—Their subjection
    imperfect—Rae Singh’s daughter weds Prince Salim,
    afterwards Jahangir—Rae Singh succeeded by his son
    Karan—The three eldest sons of Karan fall in the imperial
    service—Anup Singh, the youngest, succeeds—Quells a
    rebellion in Kabul—His death uncertain—Sarup Singh
    succeeds—He is killed—Shujawan Singh, Zorawar Singh, Gaj
    Singh, and Raj Singh succeed—The latter poisoned by his
    brother by another mother, who usurps the throne, though
    opposed by the chiefs—He murders the rightful heir, his
    nephew—Civil war—Muster-roll of the chiefs—The usurper
    attacks Jodhpur—Present state of Bikaner—Account of
    Bidavati                                                     1123

                               CHAPTER 2

  Actual condition and capabilities of Bikaner—Causes of its
    Brahmans—Charans—Malis and Nais—Chuhras and
    Thoris—Rajputs—Face of the country—Grain and vegetable
    productions—Implements of husbandry—Water—Salt lakes—Local
    physiography—Mineral productions—Unctuous clay—Animal
    productions—Commerce and manufactures—Fairs—Government and
    revenues—The fisc—Dhuan, or hearth-tax—Anga, or
    capitation-tax—Sair, or imposts—Paseti, or
    plough-tax—Malba, or ancient land-tax—Extraordinary and
    irregular resources—Feudal levies—Household troops           1145

                               CHAPTER 3

  Bhatner, its origin and denomination—Historical celebrity of
    the Jats of Bhatner—Emigration of Bersi—Succeeded by
    Bhairon—Embraces Islamism—Rao Dalich—Husain Khan, Husain
    Mahmud, Imam Mahmud, and Bahadur Khan—Zabita Khan, the
    present ruler—Condition of the country—Changes in its
    physical aspect—Ruins of ancient buildings—Promising scene
    for archaeological inquiries—Zoological and botanical
    curiosities—List of the ancient towns—Relics of the
    arrow-head character found in the desert                     1163

                               BOOK VII

                          ANNALS OF JAISALMER

                               CHAPTER 1

  Jaisalmer—The derivation of its name—The Rajputs of
    Jaisalmer called Bhattis, are of the Yadu race—Descended
    from Bharat, king of Bharatavarsha, or
    Indo-Scythia—Restricted bounds of India of modern
    invention—The ancient Hindus a naval people—First seats of
    the Yadus in India, Prayaga, Mathura, and Dwarka—Their
    international wars—Hari, king of Mathura and Dwarka,
    leader of the Yadus—Dispersion of his family—His
    great-grandsons Nabha and Khira—Nabha driven from Dwarka,
    becomes prince of Marusthali, conjectured to be the Maru,
    or Merv, of Iran—Jareja and Judbhan, the sons of Khira—The
    former founds the Sindsamma dynasty, and Judbhan becomes
    prince of Bahra in the Panjab—Prithibahu succeeds to Nabha
    in Maru—His son Bahu—His posterity—Raja Gaj founds
    Gajni—Attacked by the kings of Syria and Khorasan, who are
    repulsed—Raja Gaj attacks Kashmir—His marriage—Second
    invasion from Khorasan—The Syrian king conjectured to be
    Antiochus—Oracle predicts the loss of Gajni—Gaj
    slain—Gajni taken—Prince Salbahan arrives in the
    Panjab—Founds the city of Salbahana, S. 72—Conquers the
    Panjab—Marries the daughter of Jaipal Tuar of
    Delhi—Reconquers Gajni—Is succeeded by Baland—His numerous
    offspring—Their conquests—Conjecture regarding the Jadon
    tribe of Yusufzai, that the Afghans are Yadus, not
    Yahudis, or Jews—Baland resides at Salbahana—Assigns Gajni
    to his grandson Chakito, who becomes a convert to Islam
    and king of Khorasan—The Chakito Mongols descended from
    him—Baland dies—His son Bhatti succeeds—Changes the
    patronymic of Yadu, or Jadon, to Bhatti—Succeeded by
    Mangal Rao—His brother Masur Rao and sons cross the Gara
    and take possession of the Lakhi jungle—Degradation of the
    sons of Mangal Rao—They lose their rank as Rajputs—Their
    offspring styled Aboharias and Jats—Tribe of Tak—The
    capital of Taxiles discovered—Mangal Rao arrives in the
    Indian desert—Its tribes—His son, Majam Rao, marries a
    princess of Umarkot—His son Kehar—Alliance with the Deora
    of Jalor—The foundation of Tanot laid—Kehar succeeds—Tanot
    attacked by the Baraha tribe—Tanot completed, S. 787—Peace
    with the Barahas—Reflections                                 1169

                               CHAPTER 2

  Rao Kehar, contemporary of the Caliph Al Walid—His offspring
    become heads of tribes—Kehar, the first who extended his
    conquests to the plains—He is slain—Tano succeeds—He
    assails the Barahas and Langahas—Tanot invested by the
    prince of Multan, who is defeated—Rao Tano espouses the
    daughter of the Buta chief—His progeny—Tano finds a
    concealed treasure—Erects the castle of Bijnot—Tano
    dies—Succeeded by Bijai Rae—He assails the Baraha tribe,
    who conspire with the Langahas to attack the Bhatti
    prince—Treacherous massacre of Bijai Rae and his
    kindred—Deoraj saved by a Brahman—Tanot taken—Inhabitants
    put to the sword—Deoraj joins his mother in Butaban—Erects
    Derawar, which is assailed by the Buta chief, who is
    circumvented and put to death by Deoraj—The Bhatti prince
    is visited by a Jogi, whose disciple he becomes—Title
    changed from Rao to Rawal—Deoraj massacres the Langahas,
    who acknowledge his supremacy—Account of the Langaha
    tribe—Deoraj conquers Lodorva, capital of the Lodra
    Rajputs—Avenges an insult of the prince of Dhar—Singular
    trait of patriotic devotion—Assaults Dhar—Returns to
    Lodorva—Excavates lakes in Khadal—Assassinated—Succeeded
    by Rawal Mund, who revenges his father’s death—His son
    Bachera espouses the daughter of Balabhsen, of Patan
    Anhilwara—Contemporaries of Mahmud of Ghazni—Captures a
    caravan of horses—The Pahu Bhattis conquer Pugal from the
    Johyas—Dusaj, son of Bachera, attacks the Khichis—Proceeds
    with his three brothers to the land of Kher, where they
    espouse the Guhilot chief’s daughters—Important
    synchronisms—Bachera dies—Dusaj succeeds—Attacked by the
    Sodha prince Hamir, in whose reign the Ghaggar ceased to
    flow through the desert—Traditional couplet—Sons of
    Dusaj—The youngest, Lanja Bijairae, marries the daughter
    of Siddhraj Solanki, king of Anhilwara—The other sons of
    Dusaj, Jaisal, and Bijairae—Bhojdeo, son of Lanja
    Bijairae, becomes lord of Lodorva on the death of
    Dusaj—Jaisal conspires against his nephew Bhojdeo—Solicits
    aid from the Sultan of Ghor, whom he joins at Aror—Swears
    allegiance to the Sultan—Obtains his aid to dispossess
    Bhojdeo—Lodorva attacked and plundered—Bhojdeo
    slain—Jaisal becomes Rawal of the Bhattis—Abandons Lodorva
    as too exposed—Discovers a site for a new
    capital—Prophetic inscription on the Brahmsarkund, or
    fountain—Founds Jaisalmer—Jaisal dies, and is succeeded by
    Salbahan II.                                                 1190

                               CHAPTER 3

  Preliminary observations—The early history of the Bhattis
    not devoid of interest—Traces of their ancient manners and
    religion—The chronicle resumed—Jaisal survives the change
    of capital twelve years—The heir of Kailan
    banished—Salbahan, his younger brother,
    succeeds—Expedition against the Kathi—Their supposed
    origin—Application from the Yadu prince of Badarinath for
    a prince to fill the vacant _gaddi_—During Salbahan’s
    absence his son Bijal usurps the _gaddi_—Salbahan retires
    to Khadal, and falls in battle against the Baloch—Bijal
    commits suicide—Kailan recalled and placed on the
    _gaddi_—His issue form clans—Khizr Khan Baloch again
    invades Khadal—Kailan attacks him, and avenges his
    father’s death—Death of Kailan—Succeeded by Chachak Deo—He
    expels the Chana Rajputs—Defeats the Sodhas of Umarkot—The
    Rathors lately arrived in the desert become
    troublesome—Important synchronisms—Death of Chachak—He is
    succeeded by his grandson Karan, to the prejudice of the
    elder, Jethsi, who leaves Jaisalmer—Redresses the wrongs
    of a Baraha Rajput—Karan dies—Succeeded by Lakhansen—His
    imbecile character—Replaced by his son Punpal, who is
    dethroned and banished—His grandson, Raningdeo,
    establishes himself at Marot and Pugal—On the deposal of
    Punpal, Jethsi is recalled and placed on the _gaddi_—He
    affords a refuge to the Parihar prince of Mandor, when
    attacked by Alau-d-din—The sons of Jethsi carry off the
    imperial tribute of Tatta and Multan—The king determines
    to invade Jaisalmer—Jethsi and his sons prepare for the
    storm—Jaisalmer invested—First assault repulsed—The
    Bhattis keep an army in the field—Rawal Jethsi dies—The
    siege continues—Singular friendship between his son Ratan
    and one of the besieging generals—Mulraj succeeds—General
    assault—Again defeated—Garrison reduced to great
    extremity—Council of war—Determination to perform the
    _sakha_—Generous conduct of the Muhammadan friend of Ratan
    to his sons—Final assault—Rawal Mulraj and Ratan and their
    chief kin fall in battle—Jaisalmer taken, dismantled, and
    abandoned                                                    1206

                               CHAPTER 4

  The Rathors of Mewa settle amidst the ruins of
    Jaisalmer—Driven out by the Bhatti chieftain Dudu, who is
    elected Rawal—He carries off the stud of Firoz Shah—Second
    storm and _sakha_ of Jaisalmer—Dudu slain—Moghul invasion
    of India—The Bhatti princes obtain their liberty—Rawal
    Gharsi re-establishes Jaisalmer—Kehar, son of
    Deoraj—Disclosure of his destiny by a prodigy—Is adopted
    by the wife of Rawal Gharsi, who is assassinated by the
    tribe of Jaisar—Kehar proclaimed—Bimaladevi becomes
    sati—The succession entailed on the sons of
    Hamir—Matrimonial overture to Jetha from Mewar—Engagement
    broken off—The brothers slain—Penitential act of Rao
    Raning—Offspring of Kehar—Soma the elder departs with his
    _basai_ and settles at Girab—Sons of Rao Raning become
    Muslims to avenge their father’s death—Consequent
    forfeiture of their inheritance—They mix with the Aboharia
    Bhattis—Kailan, the third son of Kehar, settles in the
    forfeited lands—Drives the Dahyas from Khadal—Kailan
    erects the fortress of Kara on the Bias or Gara—Assailed
    by the Johyas and Langahas under Amir Khan Korai, who is
    defeated—Subdues the Chahils and Mohils—Extends his
    authority to the Panjnad—Rao Kailan marries into the Samma
    family—Account of the Samma race—He seizes on the Samma
    dominions—Makes the river Indus his boundary—Kailan
    dies—Succeeded by Chachak—Makes Marot his
    headquarters—League headed by the chief of Multan against
    Chachak, who invades that territory, and returns with a
    rich booty to Marot—A second victory—Leaves a garrison in
    the Panjab—Defeats Maipal, chief of the Dhundis—Asini-, or
    Aswini-Kot—Its supposed position—Anecdote—Feud with
    Satalmer—Its consequences—Alliance with Haibat Khan—Rao
    Chachak invades Pilibanga—The Khokhars or Ghakkars
    described—The Langahas drive his garrison from
    Dhuniapur—Rao Chachak falls sick—Challenges the prince of
    Multan—Reaches Dhuniapur—Rites preparatory to the
    combat—Worship of the sword—Chachak is slain with all his
    bands—Kumbha, hitherto insane, avenges his father’s
    feud—Birsal re-establishes Dhuniapur—Repairs to
    Kahror—Assailed by the Langahas and Baloch—Defeats
    them—Chronicle of Jaisalmer resumed—Rawal Bersi meets Rao
    Birsal on his return from his expedition in the
    Panjab—Conquest of Multan by Babur—Probable conversion of
    the Bhattis of the Panjab—Rawal Bersi, Jeth, Nunkaran,
    Bhim, Manohardas, and Sabal Singh, six generations           1215

                               CHAPTER 5

  Jaisalmer becomes a fief of the empire—Changes in the
    succession—Sabal Singh serves with the Bhatti
    contingent—His services obtain him the _gaddi_ of
    Jaisalmer—Boundaries of Jaisalmer at the period of Babur’s
    invasion—Sabal succeeded by his son, Amra Singh, who leads
    the _tika-daur_ into the Baloch territory—Crowned on the
    field of victory—Demands a relief from his subjects to
    portion his daughter—Puts a chief to death who
    refuses—Revolt of the Chana Rajputs—The Bhatti chiefs
    retaliate the inroads of the Rathors of Bikaner—Origin of
    frontier-feuds—Bhattis gain a victory—The princes of
    Jaisalmer and Bikaner are involved in the feuds of their
    vassals—Raja Anup Singh calls on all his chiefs to revenge
    the disgrace—Invasion of Jaisalmer—The invaders
    defeated—The Rawal recovers Pugal—Makes Barmer
    tributary—Amra dies—Succeeded by Jaswant—The chronicle
    closes—Decline of Jaisalmer—Pugal—Barmer—Phalodi wrested
    from her by the Rathors—Importance of these transactions
    to the British Government—Khadal to the Gara seized by the
    Daudputras—Akhai Singh succeeds—His uncle, Tej Singh,
    usurps the government—The usurper assassinated during the
    ceremony of Las—Akhai Singh recovers the _gaddi_—Reigns
    forty years—Bahawal Khan seizes on Khadal—Rawal
    Mulraj—Sarup Singh Mehta made minister—His hatred of the
    Bhatti nobles—Conspiracy against him by the heir-apparent,
    Rae Singh—Deposal and confinement of the Rawal—The prince
    proclaimed—Refuses to occupy the _gaddi_—Mulraj
    emancipated by a Rajputni—Resumption of the _gaddi_—The
    prince Rae Singh receives the black khilat of
    banishment—Retires to Jodhpur—Outlawry of the Bhatti
    nobles—Their lands sequestrated and castles
    destroyed—After twelve years restored to their lands—Rae
    Singh decapitates a merchant—Returns to Jaisalmer—Sent to
    the fortress of Dewa—Salim Singh becomes minister—His
    character—Falls into the hands of his enemies, but is
    saved by the magnanimity of Zorawar Singh—Plans his
    destruction, through his own brother’s wife—Zorawar is
    poisoned—The Mehta then assassinates her and her
    husband—Fires the castle of Dewa—Rae Singh burnt to
    death—Murder of his sons—The minister proclaims Gaj
    Singh—Younger sons of Mulraj fly to Bikaner—The longest
    reigns in the Rajput annals are during ministerial
    usurpation—Retrospective view of the Bhatti
    history—Reflections                                          1225

                               CHAPTER 6

  Rawal Mulraj enters into treaty with the English—The Raja
    dies—His grandson, Gaj Singh, proclaimed—He becomes a mere
    puppet in the minister’s hands—Third article of the
    treaty—Inequality of the alliance—Its importance to
    Jaisalmer—Consequences to be apprehended by the British
    Government—Dangers attending the enlarging the circle of
    our political connexions—Importance of Jaisalmer in the
    event of Russian invasion—British occupation of the valley
    of the Indus considered—Salim Singh’s administration
    resumed—His rapacity and tyranny increase—Wishes his
    office to be hereditary—Report of the British Agent to his
    Government—Paliwals self-exiled—Bankers’ families kept as
    hostages—Revenues arising from confiscation—Wealth of the
    minister—Border feud detailed to exemplify the
    interference of the paramount power—The Maldots of
    Baru—Their history—Nearly exterminated by the Rathors of
    Bikaner—Stimulated by the minister Salim Singh—Cause of
    this treachery—He calls for British
    interference—Granted—Result—Rawal Gaj Singh arrives at
    Udaipur—Marries the Rana’s daughter—Influence of this lady   1235

                               CHAPTER 7

  Geographical position of Jaisalmer—Its superficial area—List
    of its chief towns—Population—Jaisalmer chiefly
    desert—Magra, a rocky ridge, traced from Cutch—Sars, or
    or caravans—Articles of trade—Revenues—Land and transit
    taxes—Dani, or Collector—Amount of land-tax exacted from
    the cultivator—Dhuan, or hearth-tax—Thali, or tax on
    food—Dand, or forced contribution—Citizens refuse to
    pay—Enormous wealth accumulated by the minister by
    moral estimation—Personal appearance and dress—Their
    predilection for opium and tobacco—Paliwals, their
    history—Numbers, wealth, employment—Curious rite or
    worship—Pali coins—Pokharna
    Brahmans—Title—Numbers—Singular typical worship—Race of
    Jat—Castle of Jaisalmer                                      1244


 Portrait of Colonel James Tod                            _Frontispiece_

                                                            TO FACE PAGE

 Kanhaiya and Rādha                                                  630

 Columns of Temples at Chandrāvati                                   670

 Portraits of a Rājputni, a Rājput, a Gūsāīn, etc.                   708

 Valley of Udaipur                                                   760

 Citadel of the Hill Fortress of Kūmbhalmer                          776

 Jain Temple in the Fortress of Kūmbhalmer                           780

 Ruins in Kūmbhalmer                                                 782

 Koli and Bhīl; Chāran or Bard                                       788

 Jāt Peasant of Mārwār. Rājput Foot Soldier of Mārwār                812

 Town and Fort of Jodhpur                                            820

 Rock Sculptures at Mandor; Chāmunda, Kankāli                        842

 Rock Sculptures at Mandor; Mallināth, Nāthji                        844

 Rock Sculptures at Mandor; Rāmdeo Rāthor, Pābuji, etc.              846

 Rock Sculptures at Mandor; Gūga the Chauhān, Harbuji                848

 Rock Sculptures at Mandor; Mehaji Mangalia                          850

 Paiks of Mārwār                                                     860

 Durga Dās; Mahārāja Sher Singh of Rian                              866

 The Sacred Lake of Pushkar in Mārwār                                892

 Ancient Jain Temple at Ajmer                                        896

 Fortress and Town of Ajmer                                          900

 Castle of Bhinai                                                    904

 Source of the Berach River, and Hunting Seat of the                 910

 Bridge of Nūrābād                                                   914

 The late Mahārāja Sir Sumer Singh, of Jodhpur (_b._                 928
 1901; _d._ 1918), and his brother, the present Mahārāja
 Ummed Singh (_b._ 1903)

 Horoscope of Rāja Abhai Singh                               _Page 1019_

                         ANNALS AND ANTIQUITIES
                              OF RAJASTHAN

                          BOOK IV—_Continued_
                          AND CUSTOMS OF MEWĀR

                               CHAPTER 19

=Influence of the Priesthood.=—In all ages the ascendancy of the
hierarchy is observable; it is a tribute paid to religion through her
organs. Could the lavish endowments and extensive immunities of the
various religious establishments in Rajasthan be assumed as criteria of
the morality of the inhabitants, we should be authorized to assign them
a high station in the scale of excellence. But they more frequently
prove the reverse of their position; especially the territorial
endowments, often the fruits of a death-bed repentance,[4.19.1] which,
prompted by superstition or fear, compounds for past crimes by
posthumous profusion, although vanity not rarely lends her powerful aid.
There is scarcely a State in Rajputana in which one-fifth of the soil is
not assigned for the support of the temples, their ministers, the
secular Brahmans, bards, and [508] genealogists. But the evil was not
always so extensive; the abuse is of modern growth.

=Weighing of Princes against Gold.=—An anecdote related of the Rajas of
Marwar and Amber, always rivals in war, love, and folly, will illustrate
the motives of these dismemberments. During the annual pilgrimage to the
sacred lake of Pushkar, it is the custom for these lords of the earth to
weigh their persons against all that is rare, in gold, gems, and
precious cloths; which are afterwards distributed to the
priests.[4.19.2] The Amber chief had the advantage of a full treasury
and a fertile soil, to which his rival could oppose a more extended sway
over a braver race; but his country was proverbially poor, and at
Pushkar, the weight of the purse ranks above the deeds of the sword. As
these princes were suspended in the scale, the Amber Raja, who was
balanced against the more costly material, indirectly taunted his
brother-in-law on the poverty of his offerings, who would gladly, like
the Roman, have made up the deficiency with his sword. But the Marwar
prince had a minister of tact, at whose suggestion he challenged his
rival (of Amber) to equal him in the magnitude of his gift to the
Brahmans. On the gage being accepted, the Rathor exclaimed, “Perpetual
charity (_sasan_)[4.19.3] of all the lands held by the Brahmans in
Marwar!” His unreflecting rival had commenced the redemption of his
pledge, when his minister stopped the half-uttered vow, which would have
impoverished the family for ever; for there were ten Brahmans in Amber
who followed secular employments, cultivating or holding lands in
usufruct, to one in Marwar. Had these lords of the earth been left to
their misguided vanity, the fisc of each state would have been seriously

=Grants to Brāhmans and Devotees.=—The Brahmans, Sannyasis, and Gosains
are not behind those professional flatterers, the Bards; and many a
princely name would have been forgotten but for the record of the gift
of land. In Mewar, the lands in _sasan_, or religious grants, amount in
value to one-fifth of the revenue of the State, and the greater
proportion of these has arisen out of the prodigal mismanagement of the
last century. The dilapidated state of the country, on the general
pacification in A.D. 1818, afforded a noble opportunity to redeem in
part these alienations, without the penalty of denunciation attached to
the resumer of sacred charities. But death, famine, and exile, which had
left but few of the grantees in a capacity to return and reoccupy the
lands, in vain coalesced to restore the fisc of Mewar. The Rana dreaded
a “sixty thousand [509] years’ residence in hell,” and some of the
finest land of his country is doomed to remain unproductive. In this
predicament is the township of Menal,[4.19.4] with 50,000 bighas (16,000
acres), which with the exception of a nook where some few have
established themselves, claiming to be descendants of the original
holders, are condemned to sterility, owing to the agricultural
proprietors and the rent-receiving Brahmans being dead; and apathy
united to superstition admits their claims without inquiry.

The antiquary, who has dipped into the records of the dark period in
European church history, can have ocular illustration in Rajasthan of
traditions which may in Europe appear questionable. The vision of the
Bishop of Orleans,[4.19.5] who saw Charles Martel in the depths of hell,
undergoing the tortures of the damned, for having stripped the churches
of their possessions, “thereby rendering himself guilty of the sins of
all those who had endowed them,” would receive implicit credence from
every Hindu, whose ecclesiastical economy might both yield and derive
illustration from a comparison, not only with that of Europe, but with
the more ancient Egyptian and Jewish systems, whose endowments, as
explained by Moses and Ezekiel, bear a strong analogy to his own. The
disposition of landed property in Egypt, as amongst the ancient Hindus,
was immemorially vested in the cultivator; and it was only through
Joseph’s ministry in the famine that “the land became Pharaoh’s, as the
Egyptians sold every man his field.”[4.19.6] And the coincidence is
manifest even in the tax imposed on them as occupants of their
inheritance, being one-fifth of the crops to the king, while the maximum
rate among the Hindus is a sixth.[4.19.7] The Hindus also, in
visitations such as that which occasioned the dispossession of the ryots
of Egypt, can mortgage or sell their patrimony (_bapota_). Joseph did
not attempt to infringe the privileges of the sacred order when the
whole of Egypt became crown-land, “except the lands of the priests,
which became not Pharaoh’s”; and these priests, according to Diodorus,
held for themselves and the sacrifices no less than one-third of the
lands of Egypt. But we learn from [510] Herodotus, that Sesostris, who
ruled after Joseph’s ministry, restored the lands to the people,
reserving the customary tax or tribute.[4.19.8]

The prelates of the middle ages of Europe were often completely feudal
nobles, swearing fealty and paying homage as did the lay lords.[4.19.9]
In Rajasthan, the sacerdotal caste not bound to the altar may hold lands
and perform the duties of vassalage:[4.19.10] but of late years, when
land has been assigned to religious establishments, no reservation has
been made of fiscal rights, territorial or commercial. This is, however,
an innovation; since, formerly, princes never granted, along with
territorial assignments, the prerogative of dispensing justice, of
levying transit duties, or exemption from personal service of the feudal
tenant who held on the land thus assigned. Well may Rajput heirs exclaim
with the grandson of Clovis, “our exchequer is impoverished, and our
riches are transferred to the clergy.”[4.19.11] But Chilperic had the
courage to recall the grants of his predecessors, which, however, the
pious Gontram re-established. Many Gontrams could be found, though but
few Chilperics, in Rajasthan: we have, indeed, one in Jograj,[4.19.12]
the Rana’s ancestor, almost a contemporary of the Merovingian king, who
not only resumed all the lands of the Brahmans, but put many of them to
death, and expelled the rest his dominions.[4.19.13]

It may be doubted whether vanity and shame are not sufficient in
themselves to prevent a resumption of the lands of the Mangtas or
mendicants, as they style all those ‘who extend the palm,’ without the
dreaded penalty, which operates very slightly on the sub-vassal or
cultivator, who, having no superfluity, defies their anathemas when they
attempt to wrest from him, by virtue of the crown-grant, any of his
long-established rights. By these, the threat of impure transmigration
is despised; and the Brahman may spill his blood on the threshold of his
dwelling or in the field in dispute, which will be relinquished by the
owner but with his life. The Pat Rani, or chief queen, on the death of
Prince Amra, the heir-apparent, in 1818, bestowed a grant of fifteen
bighas of land, in one of the central districts, on a Brahman who had
assisted in the funeral rites of her son. With grant in hand [511], he
hastened to the Jat proprietor, and desired him to make over to him the
patch of land. The latter coolly replied that he would give him all the
prince had a right to, namely the tax. The Brahman threatened to spill
his own blood if he did not obey the command, and gave himself a gash in
a limb; but the Jat was inflexible, and declared that he would not
surrender his patrimony (_bapota_) even if he slew himself.[4.19.14] In
short, the

ryot of Mewar would reply, even to his sovereign, if he demanded his
field, in the very words of Naboth to Ahab, king of Israel, when he
demanded the vineyard contiguous to the palace: “The Lord forbid it me
that I should give the inheritance of my fathers unto thee.”

=Tithes, Temples.=—But the tithes, and other small and legally
established rights of the hierarchy, are still religiously maintained.
The village temple and the village priest are always objects of
veneration to the industrious husbandman, on whom superstition acts more
powerfully than on the bold marauding Rajput, who does not hesitate to
demand salvamenta (_rakhwali_) from the lands of Kanhaiya or Eklinga.
But the poor ryot of the nineteenth century of Vikrama has the same
fears as the peasants of Charlemagne, who were made to believe that the
ears of corn found empty had been devoured by infernal spirits, reported
to have said they owed their feast to the non-payment of

=Political Influence of Brāhmans.=—The political influence of the
Brahmans is frequently exemplified in cases alike prejudicial to the
interests of society and the personal welfare of the sovereign. The
latter is often surrounded by lay-Brahmans as confidential servants, in
the capacities of butler, keeper of the wardrobe, or seneschal,[4.19.16]
besides the Guru or domestic chaplain, who to the duty of ghostly
comforter sometimes joins that of [512] astrologer and physician, in
which case God help the prince![4.19.17] These Gurus and Purohits,
having the education of the children, acquire immense influence, and are
not backward in improving “the greatness thrust upon them.” They are all
continually importuning their prince for grants of land for themselves
and the shrines they are attached to; and every chief, as well as every
influential domestic, takes advantage of ephemeral favour to increase
the endowments of his tutelary divinity. The Peshwas of Satara are the
most striking out of numerous examples.

In the dark ages of Europe the monks are said to have prostituted their
knowledge of writing to the forging of charters in their own favour: a
practice not easily detected in the days of ignorance.[4.19.18] The
Brahmans, in like manner, do not scruple to employ this method of
augmenting the wealth of their shrines; and superstition and indolence
combine to support the deception There is not a doubt that the grand
charter of Nathdwara was a forgery, in which the prince’s butler was
bribed to aid; and report alleges that the Rana secretly favoured an
artifice which regard to opinion prevented him from overtly
promulgating. Although the copper-plate had been buried under ground,
and came out disguised with a coating of verdigris, there were marks
which proved the date of its execution to be false. I have seen charters
which, it has been gravely asserted, were granted by Rama upwards of
three thousand years ago! Such is the origin assigned to one found in a
well at the ancient Brahmpuri, in the valley of the capital. If there be
sceptics as to its validity, they are silent ones; and this copper-plate
of the brazen age [513] is worth gold to the proprietor.[4.19.19] A
census[4.19.20] of the three central districts of Mewar discovered that
more than twenty thousand acres of these fertile lands, irrigated by the
Berach and Banas rivers, were distributed in isolated portions, of which
the mendicant castes had the chief share, and which proved fertile
sources of dispute to the husbandman and the officers of the revenue.
From the mass of title-deeds of every description by which these lands
were held, one deserves to be selected, on account of its being
pretended to have been written and bestowed on the incumbent’s ancestor
by the deity upwards of three centuries ago, and which has been
maintained as a _bona-fide_ grant of Krishna[4.19.21] ever since. By
such credulity and apathy are the Rajput States influenced: yet let the
reader check any rising feeling of contempt for Hindu legislation, and
cast a retrospective glance at the page of European church history,
where he will observe in the time of the most potent of our monarchs
that the clergy possessed one-half of the soil:[4.19.22] and the
chronicles of France will show him Charlemagne on his death-bed,
bequeathing two-thirds of his domains to the church, deeming the
remaining third sufficient for the ambition of four sons. The same dread
of futurity, and the hope to expiate the sins of a life, at its close,
by gifts to the organs of religion, is the motive for these unwise
alienations, whether in Europe or in Asia. Some of these establishments,
and particularly that at Nathdwara, made a proper use of their revenues
in keeping up the Sada-Brat, or perpetual charity, though it is chiefly
distributed to religious pilgrims: but among the many complaints made of
the misapplication of the funds, the diminution of this hospitable right
is one; while, at other shrines, the avarice of the priests is
observable in the coarseness of the food dressed for sacrifice and

=Tithes levied by Brāhmans.=—Besides the crown-grants to the greater
establishments, the Brahmans received petty tithes from the
agriculturist, and a small duty from the trader, as _mapa_ or metage,
throughout every township, corresponding with the scale of the
village-chapel. An inscription found by the author at the town of
Palod,[4.19.23] and dated nearly seven centuries back, affords a good
specimen of the claims of the village [514] priesthood. The following
are among the items. The _serana_, or a _ser_, in every _maund_, being
the fortieth part of the grain of the _unalu_, or summer-harvest; the
_karpa_, or a bundle from every sheaf of the autumnal crops, whether
_makai_ (Indian corn), _bajra_ or _juar_ (maize) [millet], or the other
grains peculiar to that season.[4.19.24]

They also derive a tithe from the oil-mill and sugar-mill, and receive a
_kansa_ or platter of food on all rejoicings, as births, marriages,
etc., with _charai_, or the right of pasturage on the village common;
and where they have become possessed of landed property they have
_halma_, or unpaid labour in man and beasts, and implements, for its
culture: an exaction well known in Europe as one of the detested
_corvées_ of the feudal system of France,[4.19.25] the abolition of
which was the sole boon the English husbandman obtained by the charter
of Runymede. Both the chieftain and the priest exact _halma_ in
Rajasthan; but in that country it is mitigated, and abuse is prevented,
by a sentiment unknown to the feudal despot of the middle ages of
Europe, and which, though difficult to define, acts imperceptibly,
having its source in accordance of belief, patriarchal manners, and
clannish attachments.

=Privileges of Saivas and Jains.=—I shall now briefly consider the
privileges of the Saivas and Jains—the orthodox and heterodox sects of
Mewar; and then proceed to those of Vishnu, whose worship is the most
prevalent in these countries, and which I am inclined to regard as of
more recent origin.

=Worship of Siva.=—Mahadeva, or Iswara, is the tutelary divinity of the
Rajputs in Mewar; and from the early annals of the dynasty appears to
have been, with his consort Isani, the sole object of Guhilot adoration.
Iswara is adored under the epithet of Eklinga,[4.19.26] and is either
worshipped in his monolithic symbol, or as Iswara Chaumukhi, the
quadriform divinity, represented by a bust with four faces. The sacred
bull, Nandi, has his altar attached to all the shrines of Iswara, as was
that of Mneves or Apis to those of the Egyptian Osiris. Nandi has
occasionally his separate shrines, and there is one in the valley of
Udaipur which has the reputation of being oracular as regards the
seasons. The bull was the steed of Iswara, and [515] carried him in
battle; he is often represented upon it, with his consort Isani, at full
speed. I will not stop to inquire whether the Grecian fable of the rape
of Europa[4.19.27] by the tauriform Jupiter may not be derived, with
much more of their mythology, from the Hindu pantheon; whether that
pantheon was originally erected on the Indus, or the Ganges, or the more
central scene of early civilization, the banks of the Oxus. The bull was
offered to Mithras by the Persian, and opposed as it now appears to
Hindu faith, he formerly bled on the altars of the Sun-god, on which not
only the Baldan,[4.19.28] ‘offering of the bull,’ was made, but human
sacrifices.[4.19.29] We do not learn that the Egyptian priesthood
presented the kindred of Apis to Osiris, but as they were not prohibited
from eating beef, they may have done so.

=The Temple of Eklinga.=—The shrine of Eklinga is situated in a defile
about six [twelve] miles north of Udaipur. The hills towering around it
on all sides are of the primitive formation, and their scarped summits
are clustered with honeycombs.[4.19.30] There are abundant small springs
of water, which keep verdant numerous shrubs, the flowers of which are
acceptable to the deity; especially the _kaner_ or oleander, which grows
in great luxuriance on the Aravalli. Groves of bamboo and mango were
formerly common, according to tradition; but although it is deemed
sacrilege to thin the groves of Bal,[4.19.31] the bamboo has been nearly
destroyed: there are, however, still many trees sacred to the deity
scattered around. It would be difficult to convey a just [516] idea of a
temple so complicated in its details. It is of the form commonly styled
pagoda, and, like all the ancient temples of Siva, its _sikhara_, or
pinnacle, is pyramidal. The various orders of Hindu sacred architecture
are distinguished by the form of the _sikhara_, which is the portion
springing from and surmounting the perpendicular walls of the body of
the temple. The _sikhara_ of those of Siva is invariably pyramidal, and
its sides vary with the base, whether square or oblong. The apex is
crowned with an ornamental figure, as a sphinx, an urn, a ball, or a
lion, which is called the _kalas_. When the _sikhara_ is but the frustum
of a pyramid, it is often surmounted by a row of lions, as at Bijolia.
The fane of Eklinga is of white marble and of ample dimensions. Under an
open-vaulted temple supported by columns, and fronting the four-faced
divinity, is the brazen bull Nandi, of the natural size; it is cast, and
of excellent proportions. The figure is perfect, except where the shot
or hammer of an infidel invader has penetrated its hollow flank in
search of treasure. Within the quadrangle are miniature shrines,
containing some of the minor divinities.[4.19.32] The high-priest of
Eklinga, like all his order, is doomed to celibacy, and the office is
continued by adopted disciples. Of such spiritual descents they
calculate sixty-four since the Sage Harita, whose benediction obtained
for the Guhilot Rajput the sovereignty of Chitor, when driven from
Saurashtra by the Parthians.

The priests of Eklinga are termed Gosain or Goswami, which signifies
‘control over the senses’! The distinguishing mark of the faith of Siva
is the crescent on the forehead:[4.19.33] the hair is braided and forms
a tiara round the head, and with its folds a chaplet of the lotus-seed
is often entwined. They smear the body with ashes, and use garments dyed
of an orange hue. They bury their dead in a sitting [517] posture, and
erect tumuli over them, which are generally conical in form.[4.19.34] It
is not uncommon for priestesses to officiate in the temple of Siva.
There is a numerous class of Gosains who have adopted celibacy, and who
yet follow secular employments both in commerce and arms. The mercantile
Gosains[4.19.35] are amongst the richest individuals in India, and there
are several at Udaipur who enjoy high favour, and who were found very
useful when the Mahrattas demanded a war-contribution, as their
privileged character did not prevent their being offered and taken as
hostages for its payment. The Gosains who profess arms, partake of the
character of the knights of St. John of Jerusalem. They live in
monasteries scattered over the country, possess lands, and beg, or serve
for pay when called upon. As defensive soldiers, they are good. Siva,
their patron, is the god of war, and like him they make great use of
intoxicating herbs, and even of spirituous liquors. In Mewar they can
always muster many hundreds of the Kanphara[4.19.36] Jogi, or ‘split-ear
ascetics,’ so called from the habit of piercing the ear and placing
therein a ring of the conch-shell, which is their battle-trumpet. Both
Brahmans and Rajputs, and even =Gujars=, can belong to this order, a
particular account of whose internal discipline and economy could not
fail to be interesting. The poet Chand gives an animated description of
the body-guard of the King of Kanauj, which was composed of these
monastic warriors.

=Priestly Functions of the Mewār Rānas.=—The Ranas of Mewar, as the
diwans, or vicegerents of Siva, when they visit the temple supersede the
high priest in his duties, and perform the ceremonies, which the
reigning prince does with peculiar correctness and grace.[4.19.37]

=Privileges of Jains.=—The shrine of Eklinga is endowed with twenty-four
large villages from the fisc, besides parcels of land from the
chieftains; but the privileges of the tutelary divinity have been waning
since Kanhaiya fixed his residence amongst them; and as the priests of
Apollo complained that the god was driven from the sacred mount [518]
Govardhana, in Vraj, by the influence of those of Jupiter[4.19.38] with
Shah Jahan, the latter may now lament that the day of retribution has
arrived, when propitiation to the Preserver is deemed more important
than to the Destroyer. This may arise from the personal character of the
high priests, who, from their vicinity to the court, can scarcely avoid
mingling in its intrigues, and thence lose in character: even the Ranis
do not hesitate to take mortgages on the estates of Bholanath.[4.19.39]
We shall not further enlarge on the immunities to Eklinga, or the forms
in which they are conveyed, as these will be fully discussed in the
account of the shrine of Krishna; but proceed to notice the privileges
of the heterodox Jains—the Vidyavan[4.19.40] or Magi of Rajasthan. The
numbers and power of these sectarians are little known to Europeans, who
take it for granted that they are few and dispersed. To prove the extent
of their religious and political power, it will suffice to remark that
the pontiff of the Khadatara-gachchha,[4.19.41] one of the many branches
of this faith, has 11,000 clerical disciples scattered over India; that
a single community, the Osi or Oswal,[4.19.42] numbers 100,000 families;
and that more than half [519] of the mercantile wealth of India passes
through the hands of the Jain laity. Rajasthan and Saurashtra are the
cradles of the Buddhist or Jain faith, and three out of their five
sacred mounts, namely, Abu, Palitana,[4.19.43] and Girnar, are in these
countries. The officers of the State and revenue are chiefly of the Jain
laity, as are the majority of the bankers, from Lahore to the ocean. The
chief magistrate and assessors of justice, in Udaipur and most of the
towns of Rajasthan, are of this sect; and as their voluntary duties are
confined to civil cases, they are as competent in these as they are the
reverse in criminal cases, from their tenets forbidding the shedding of
blood. To this leading feature in their religion they owe their
political debasement: for Kumarpal, the last king of Anhilwara of the
Jain faith, would not march his armies in the rains, from the
unavoidable sacrifice of animal life that must have ensued. The strict
Jain does not even maintain a lamp during that season, lest it should
attract moths to their destruction.

=Absence of Intolerance.=—The period of sectarian intolerance is now
past; and as far as my observation goes, the ministers of Vishnu, Siva,
and Buddha view each other without malignity; which feeling never
appears to have influenced the laity of either sect, who are
indiscriminately respectful to the ministers of all religions, whatever
be their tenets. It is sufficient that their office is one of sanctity,
and that they are ministers of the Divinity, who, they say, excludes the
homage of none, in whatever tongue or whatever manner he is sought; and
with this spirit of entire toleration, the devout missionary, or Mulla,
would in no country meet more security or hospitable courtesy than among
the Rajputs. They must, however, adopt the toleration they would find
practised towards themselves, and not exclude, as some of them do, the
races of Surya and Chandra from divine mercy, who, with less arrogance,
and more reliance on the compassionate nature of the Creator, say, he
has established a variety of paths by which the good may attain

Mewar has, from the most remote period, afforded a refuge to the
followers of the Jain faith, which was the religion of Valabhi, the
first capital of the Rana’s ancestors, and many monuments attest the
support this family has granted to its [520] professors in all the
vicissitudes of their fortunes. One of the best preserved monumental
remains in India is a column most elaborately sculptured, full seventy
feet in height, dedicated to Parsvanath, in Chitor.[4.19.44] The noblest
remains of sacred architecture, not in Mewar only, but throughout
Western India, are Buddhist or Jain:[4.19.45] and the many ancient
cities where this religion was fostered, have inscriptions which evince
their prosperity in these countries, with whose history their own is
interwoven. In fine, the necrological records of the Jains bear witness
to their having occupied a distinguished place in Rajput society; and
the privileges they still enjoy, prove that they are not overlooked. It
is not my intention to say more on the past or present history of these
sectarians, than may be necessary to show the footing on which their
establishments are placed; to which end little is required beyond copies
of a few simple warrants and ordinances in their favour.[4.19.46]
Hereafter I may endeavour to add something to the knowledge already
possessed of these deists of Rajasthan, whose singular communities
contain mines of knowledge hitherto inaccessible to Europeans. The
libraries of Jaisalmer in the desert, of Anhilwara, the cradle of their
faith, of Cambay, and other places of minor importance, consist of
thousands of volumes. These are under the control, not of the priests
alone, but of communities of the most wealthy and respectable amongst
the laity, and are preserved in the crypts of their temples, which
precaution ensured their preservation, as well as that of the statues of
their deified teachers, when the temples themselves were destroyed by
the Muhammadan invaders, who paid more deference to the images of Buddha
than those of Siva or Vishnu. The preservation of the former may be
owing to the natural formation of their statues; for while many of
Adinath, of Nemi, and of Parsva have escaped the hammer, there is
scarcely an Apollo or a Venus, of any antiquity, entire, from Lahore to
Rameswaram. The two arms of these theists sufficed for their protection;
while the statues of the polytheists have met with no mercy.

=Grant of Rāna Rāj Singh.=—No. V.[4.19.47] is the translation of a grant
by the celebrated Rana Raj Singh, the gallant and successful opponent of
Aurangzeb in many a battle. It is at once of a general and special
nature, containing a confirmation of the old privileges of the sect, and
a mark of favour to a priest of some distinction, called Mana. It is
well known [521] that the first law of the Jains, like that of the
ancient Athenian lawgiver Triptolemus, is, “Thou shalt not kill,” a
precept applicable to every sentient thing. The first clause of this
edict, in conformity thereto, prohibits all innovation upon this
cherished principle; while the second declares that even the life which
is forfeited to the laws is immortal (_amara_) if the victim but passes
near their abodes. The third article defines the extent of _saran_, or
sanctuary, the dearest privilege of the races of these regions. The
fourth article sanctions the tithes, both on agricultural and commercial
produce; and makes no distinction between the Jain priests and those of
Siva and Vishnu in this source of income, which will be more fully
detailed in the account of Nathdwara. The fifth article is the
particular gift to the priest; and the whole closes with the usual
anathema against such as may infringe the ordinance.

=The Jain Retreat.=—The edicts Nos. VI. and VII.,[4.19.48] engraved on
pillars of stone in the towns of Rasmi and Bakrol, further illustrate
the scrupulous observances of the Rana’s house towards the Jains; where,
in compliance with their peculiar doctrine, the oil-mill and the
potter’s wheel suspend their revolutions for the four months in the year
when insects most abound.[4.19.49] Many others of a similar character
could be furnished, but these remarks may be concluded with an instance
of the influence of the Jains on Rajput society, which passed
immediately under the Author’s eye. In the midst of a sacrifice to the
god of war, when the victims were rapidly falling by the scimitar, a
request preferred by one of them for the life of a goat or a buffalo on
the point of immolation, met instant compliance, and the animal, become
_amara_ or immortal, with a garland thrown round his neck, was led off
in triumph from the blood-stained spot.

=Nāthdwāra.=—This is the most celebrated of the fanes of the Hindu
Apollo. Its etymology is ‘the portal (_dwara_) of the god’ (_nath_), of
the same import as his more ancient shrine of Dwarka[4.19.50] at the
‘world’s end.’ Nathdwara is twenty-two [thirty] miles N.N.E. of Udaipur,
on the right bank of the Banas. Although the principal resort of the
followers of Vishnu, it has nothing very remarkable in its structure or
situation. It owes its celebrity entirely to the image of Krishna, said
to [522] be the same that has been worshipped at Mathura ever since his
deification, between eleven and twelve hundred years before
Christ.[4.19.51] As containing the representative of the mildest of the
gods of Hind, Nathdwara is one of the most frequented places of
pilgrimage, though it must want that attraction to the classical Hindu
which the caves of Gaya, the shores of the distant Dwarka, or the
pastoral Vraj,[4.19.52] the place of the nativity of Krishna, present to
his imagination; for though the groves of Vindra,[4.19.53] in which
Kanhaiya disported with the Gopis, no longer resound to the echoes of
his flute; though the waters of the Yamuna[4.19.54] are daily polluted
with the blood of the sacred kine, still it is the holy land of the
pilgrim, the sacred Jordan of his fancy, on whose banks he may sit and
weep, as did the banished Israelite of old, the glories of Mathura, his

It was in the reign of Aurangzeb that the pastoral divinity was exiled
from Vraj, that classic soil which, during a period of two thousand
eight hundred years, had been the sanctuary of his worshippers. He had
been compelled to occasional flights during the visitations of Mahmud
and the first dynasties of Afghan invaders; though the more tolerant of
the Mogul kings not only reinstated him, but were suspected of dividing
their faith between Kanhaiya and the prophet. Akbar was an enthusiast in
the mystic poetry of Jayadeva, which paints in glowing colours the loves
of Kanhaiya and Radha, in which lovely personification the refined Hindu
abjures all sensual interpretation, asserting its character of pure
spiritual love.[4.19.55]

=The Mughals and Krishna Worship.=—Jahangir, by birth half a Rajput, was
equally indulgent to the worship of Kanhaiya: but Shah Jahan, also the
son of a Rajput princess, inclined to the [523] doctrines of Siva, in
which he was initiated by Siddhrup the Sannyasi. Sectarian animosity is
more virulent than faiths totally dissimilar. Here we see Hindu
depressing Hindu: the followers of Siva oppressing those of Kanhaiya;
the priests of Jupiter driving the pastoral Apollo from the Parnassus of
Vraj. At the intercession, however, of a princess of Udaipur, he was
replaced on his altar, where he remained till Aurangzeb became emperor
of the Moguls. In such detestation did the Hindus hold this intolerant
king, that in like manner as they supposed the beneficent Akbar to be
the devout Mukund in a former birth, so they make the tyrant’s body
enclose the soul of Kalyavana the foe of Krishna, ere his apotheosis,
from whom he fled to Dwarka, and thence acquired the name of

=The Image of Krishna removed to Mewār. Founding of Nāthdwāra.=—When
Aurangzeb proscribed Kanhaiya, and rendered his shrines impure
throughout Vraj, Rana Raj Singh “offered the heads of one hundred
thousand Rajputs for his service,” and the god was conducted by the
route of Kotah and Rampura to Mewar. An omen decided the spot of his
future residence. As he journeyed to gain the capital of the Sesodias
the chariot-wheel sunk deep into the earth and defied extrication; upon
which the Saguni (augur) interpreted the pleasure of the god, that he
desired to dwell there. This circumstance occurred at an inconsiderable
village called Siarh, in the fief of Delwara, one of the sixteen nobles
of Mewar. Rejoiced at this decided manifestation of favour, the chief
hastened to make a perpetual gift of the village and its lands, which
was speedily confirmed by the patent of the Rana.[4.19.57] Nathji (_the_
god) was removed from his car, and in due time a temple was erected for
his reception, when the hamlet of Siarh became the town of Nathdwara,
which now contains many thousand inhabitants of all denominations, who,
reposing under the especial protection of the god, are exempt from every
mortal tribunal. The site is not uninteresting, nor devoid of the means
of defence. To the east it is shut in by a cluster of hills, and to the
westward flows the Banas, which nearly bathes the extreme points of the
hills. Within these bounds is the sanctuary (_saran_) of Kanhaiya, where
the criminal is free from pursuit; nor dare the rod of justice appear on
the mount, or the foot of the pursuer pass the stream; neither within it
can blood be spilt, for the pastoral Kanhaiya delights not in offerings
of this kind [524].[4.19.58] The territory contains within its precincts
abundant space for the town, the temple, and the establishments of the
priests, as well as for the numerous resident worshippers, and the
constant influx of votaries from the most distant regions,

                From Samarcand, by Oxus, Temir’s throne,
                Down to the golden Chersonese,

who find abundant shelter from the noontide blaze in the groves of
tamarind, pipal, and semal,[4.19.59] where they listen to the mystic
hymns of Jayadeva. Here those whom ambition has cloyed, superstition
unsettled, satiety disgusted, commerce ruined, or crime disquieted, may
be found as ascetic attendants on the mildest of the gods of India.
Determined upon renouncing the world, they first renounce the ties that
bind them to it, whether family, friends, or fortune, and placing their
wealth at the disposal of the deity, stipulate only for a portion of the
food dressed for him, and to be permitted to prostrate themselves before
him till their allotted time is expired. Here no blood-stained sacrifice
scares the timid devotee; no austerities terrify, or tedious ceremonies
fatigue him; he is taught to cherish the hope that he has only to ask
for mercy in order to obtain it; and to believe that the compassionate
deity who guarded the lapwing’s nest[4.19.60] in the midst of myriads of
combatants, who gave beatitude to the courtesan[4.19.61] who as the wall
crushed her pronounced the name of ‘Rama,’ will not withhold it from him
who has quitted the world and its allurements that he may live only in
his presence, be fed by the food prepared for himself, and yield up his
last sigh invoking the name of Hari. There [525] have been two hundred
individuals at a time, many of whom, stipulating merely for food,
raiment, and funeral rites, have abandoned all to pass their days in
devotion at the shrine: men of every condition, Rajput merchant, and
mechanic; and where sincerity of devotion is the sole expiation, and
gifts outweigh penance, they must feel the road smooth to the haven of

=Benefactions to Nāthdwāra.=—The dead stock of Krishna’s shrine is
augmented chiefly by those who hold life “unstable as the dew-drop on
the lotus”; and who are happy to barter “the wealth of Ormuz and of Ind”
for the intercessional prayers of the high priest, and his passport to
Haripur, the heaven of Hari. From the banks of the Indus to the mouths
of the Ganges, from the coasts of the Peninsula to the shores of the Red
Sea, the gifts of gratitude or of fear are lavishly poured in; and
though the unsettled aspect of the last half-century curtailed the
transmission of the more bulky but least valuable benefactions, it less
affected the bills of exchange from the successful sons of commerce, or
the legacies of the dead. The safe arrival of a galleon from Sofala or
Arabia produced as much to the shrine as to the insurance office, for
Kanhaiya is the Saint Nicholas of the Hindu navigator, as was Apollo to
the Grecian and Celtic sailors, who purchased the charmed arrows of the
god to calm the troubled sea.[4.19.62] A storm accordingly yields in
proportion to its violence, or to the nerve of the owner of the vessel.
The appearance of a long-denied heir might deprive him of half his
patrimony, and force him to lament his parent’s distrust in natural
causes; while the accidental mistake of touching forbidden food on
particular fasts requires expiation, not by flagellation or seclusion,
but by the penance of the purse.

There is no donation too great or too trifling for the acceptance of
Krishna, from the baronial estate to a patch of meadowland; from the
gemmed coronet to adorn his image, to the widow’s mite; nor, as before
observed, is there a principality [526] in India which does not diminish
its fisc to add to his revenues. What effect the milder rites of the
shepherd-god have produced on the adorers of Siva we know not, but
assuredly Eklinga, the tutelary divinity of Mewar, has to complain of
being defrauded of half his dues since Kanhaiya transferred his abode
from the Yamuna to the Banas; for the revenues assigned to Kanhaiya, who
under the epithet of ‘Yellow mantle’[4.19.63] has a distinguished niche
in the domestic chapel of the Rana, far exceed those of the Avenger. The
grants or patents of Hindupati,[4.19.64] defining the privileges and
immunities of the shrine, are curious documents.[4.19.65]

=Rights of Sanctuary.=—The extension of the sanctuary beyond the
vicinage of the shrine became a subject of much animadversion; and in
delegating judicial authority over the whole of the villages in the
grant to the priests, the Rana committed the temporal welfare of his
subjects to a class of men not apt to be lenient in the collection of
their dues, which not unfrequently led to bloodshed. In alienating the
other royalties, especially the transit duties, he was censured even by
the zealots. Yet, however important such concessions, they were of
subordinate value to the rights of sanctuary, which were extended to the
whole of the towns in the grant, thereby multiplying the places of
refuge for crime, already too numerous.

=Violation of Sanctuary.=—In all ages and countries the rights of
sanctuary have been admitted, and however they may be abused, their
institution sprung from humane motives. To check the impulse of revenge
and to shelter the weak from oppression are noble objects, and the
surest test of a nation’s independence is the extent to which they are
carried. From the remotest times _saran_ has been the most valued
privilege of the Rajputs, the lowest of whom deems his house a refuge
against the most powerful. But we merely propose to discuss the
sanctuary of holy places, and more immediately that of the shrine of
Kanhaiya. When Moses, after the Exodus, made a division of the lands of
Canaan amongst the Israelites, and appointed “six cities to be the
refuge of him who had slain unwittingly, from the avenger of
blood,”[4.19.66] the intention was not to afford facilities for eluding
justice, but to check the hasty impulse of revenge; for the slayer was
only to be protected “until he stood before the congregation for
judgment, or until the death of the high-priest” [527], which event
appears to have been considered as the termination of revenge.[4.19.67]
The infraction of political sanctuary (_saran torna_) often gives rise
to the most inveterate feuds; and its abuse by the priests is highly
prejudicial to society. Moses appointed but six cities of refuge to the
whole Levite tribe; but the Rana has assigned more to one shrine than
the entire possessions of that branch of the Israelites who had but
forty-two cities, while Kanhaiya has forty-six.[4.19.68] The motive of
sanctuary in Rajasthan may have been originally the same as that of the
divine legislator; but the privilege has been abused, and the most
notorious criminals deem the temple their best safeguard. Yet some
princes have been found hardy enough to violate, though indirectly, the
sacred _saran_. Zalim Singh of Kotah, a zealot in all the observances of
religion, had the boldness to draw the line when selfish priestcraft
interfered with his police; and though he would not demand the culprit,
or sacrilegiously drag him from the altar, he has forced him thence by
prohibiting the admission of food, and threatening to build up the door
of the temple. It was thus the Greeks evaded the laws, and compelled the
criminal’s surrender by kindling fires around the sanctuary.[4.19.69]
The towns of Kanhaiya did not often abuse their privilege; but the
Author once had to interpose, where a priest of Eklinga gave asylum to a
felon who had committed murder within the bounds of his domain of
Pahona. As this town, of eight thousand rupees annual revenue belonging
to the fisc, had been gained by a forged charter, the Author was glad to
seize on the occasion to recommend its resumption, though he thereby
incurred the penalty for seizing church land, namely “sixty thousand
years in hell.” The unusual occurrence created a sensation, but it was
so indisputably just that not a voice was raised in opposition.

=Endowments of Nāthdwāra.=—Let us revert to the endowments of Nathdwara.
Herodotus[4.19.70] furnishes a powerful instance of the estimation in
which sacred offerings were held by the nations of antiquity. He
observes that these were transmitted from the remotest nations of
Scythia to Delos in Greece; a range far less extensive than the
offerings to the [528] Dewal of Apollo in Mewar. The spices of the isles
of the Indian archipelago; the balmy spoils of Araby the blest; the nard
or frankincense of Tartary; the raisins and pistachios of Persia; every
variety of saccharine preparation, from the shakkarkhand (sugar-candy)
of the celestial empire, with which the god sweetens his evening repast,
to the more common sort which enters into the _peras_ of Mathura, the
food of his infancy;[4.19.71] the shawls of Kashmir, the silks of
Bengal, the scarfs of Benares, the brocades of Gujarat,

                             ... the flower and choice
                 Of many provinces from bound to bound,

all contribute to enrich the shrine of Nathdwara. But it is with the
votaries of the maritime provinces of India that he has most reason to
be satisfied; in the commercial cities of Surat, Cambay, Muskat-mandavi,
etc., etc., where the Mukhyas, or comptrollers deputed by the high
priest, reside, to collect the benefactions, and transmit them as
occasion requires. A deputy resides on the part of the high priest at
Multan, who invests the distant worshippers with the initiative cordon
and necklace. Even from Samarkand the pilgrims repair with their
offerings; and a sum, seldom less than ten thousand rupees, is annually
transmitted by the votaries from the Arabian ports of Muscat, Mocha, and
Jiddah; which contribution is probably augmented not only by the
votaries who dwell at the mouths of the Volga[4.19.72] [529], but by the
Samoyede[4.19.73] of Siberia. There is not a petty retailer professing
the Vishnu creed who does not carry a tithe of his trade to the stores:
and thus caravans of thirty and forty cars, double-yoked, pass twice or
thrice annually by the upper road to Nathdwara. These pious bounties are
not allowed to moulder in the _bhandars_: the apparel is distributed
with a liberal hand as the gift of the deity to those who evince their
devotion; and the edibles enter daily into the various food prepared at
the shrine.

=Food offered to Deities.=—It has been remarked by the celebrated
Goguet[4.19.74] that the custom of offering food to the object of divine
homage had its origin in a principle of gratitude, the repast being
deemed hallowed by presenting the first portion to him who gave it,
since the devotee was unable to conceive aught more acceptable than that
whereby life is sustained. From the earliest period such offerings have
been tendered; and in the burnt-offering (_hom_) of Abel, of the
firstling of the flock, and the first portion of the repast presented by
the Rajput to Annadeva[4.19.75] ‘the nourisher,’ the motive is the same.
But the _parsad_ (such is the denomination of the food sacred to
Kanhaiya) is deemed unlucky, if not unholy; a prejudice arising from the
heterogeneous sources whence it is supplied—often from bequests of the
dead. The Mukhyas [530] of the temple accordingly carry the sacred food
to wheresoever the votaries dwell, which proves an irresistible stimulus
to backward zeal, and produces an ample return. At the same time are
transmitted, as from the god, dresses of honour corresponding in
material and value with the rank of the receiver: a diadem, or fillet of
satin and gold, embroidered; a _dagla_, or quilted coat of gold or
silver brocade for the cold weather; a scarf of blue and gold; or if to
one who prizes the gift less for its intrinsic worth than as a mark of
special favour, a fragment of the garland worn on some festival by the
god; or a simple necklace, by which he is inaugurated amongst the

=Lands dedicated to the Shrine.=—It has been mentioned that the lands of
Mewar appropriated to the shrine are equal in value to a baronial
appanage, and, as before observed, there is not a principality in India
which does not assign a portion of its domain or revenue to this object.
The Hara princes of Kotah and Bundi are almost exclusive worshippers of
Kanhaiya, and the regent Zalim Singh is devoted to the maintenance of
the dignity of the establishment. Everything at Kotah appertains to
Kanhaiya. The prince has but the usufruct of the palace, for which
£12,000 are annually transmitted to the shrine. The grand lake east of
the town, with all its finny tenants, is under his especial
protection;[4.19.77] and the extensive suburb adjoining, with its rents,
lands, and transit duties, all belong to the god. Zalim Singh moreover
transmits to the high priest the most valuable shawls, broadcloths, and
horses; and throughout the long period of predatory warfare he
maintained two Nishans,[4.19.78] of a hundred firelocks each, for the
protection of the temple. His favourite son also, a child of love, is
called Gordhandas, the ‘slave of Gordhan,’ one of the many titles of
Kanhaiya. The prince of Marwar went mad from the murder of the high
priest of Jalandhara, the epithet given to Kanhaiya in that State; and
the Raja of Sheopur,[4.19.79] the last of the Gaurs, lost his
sovereignty by abandoning the worship of Har for that of Hari. The
‘slave’ of Radha[4.19.80] (such was the name of this prince) almost
lived in the temple, and used to dance before the statue. Had he upheld
the rights of him who wields [531] the trident, the tutelary deity of
his capital, Sivapur, instead of the unwarlike divinity whose
unpropitious title of Ranchhor should never be borne by the martial
Rajput, his fall would have been more dignified, though it could not
have been retarded when the overwhelming torrent of the Mahrattas under
Sindhia swept Rajwara.[4.19.81]

=Grants to the High Priest.=—A distinction is made between the grants to
the temple and those for the personal use of the pontiff, who at least
affects never to apply any portion of the former to his own use, and he
can scarcely have occasion to do so; but when from the stores of Apollo
could be purchased the spices of the isles, the fruits of Persia, and
the brocades of Gujarat, we may indulge our scepticism in questioning
this forbearance: but the abuse has been rectified, and traffic banished
from the temple. The personal grant (Appendix, No. XI.) to the high
priest ought alone to have sufficed for his household expenditure, being
twenty thousand rupees per annum, equal to £10,000 in Europe. But the
ten thousand towns of Mewar, from each of which he levied a crown, now
exist only in the old rent-roll, and the heralds of Apollo would in vain
attempt to collect their tribute from two thousand villages.

The Appendix, No. XII., being a grant of privileges to a minor shrine of
Kanhaiya, in his character of Muralidhar or ‘flute-player,’ contains
much information on the minutiae of benefactions, and will afford a good
idea of the nature of these revenues.

=Effects of Krishna-worship on the Rājputs.=—The predominance of the
mild doctrines of Kanhaiya over the dark rites of Siva, is doubtless
beneficial to Rajput society. Were the prevention of female immolation
the sole good resulting from their prevalence, that alone would
conciliate our partiality; a real worshipper of Vishnu should forbid his
wife following him to the pyre, as did recently the Bundi prince. In
fact, their tenderness to animal life is carried to nearly as great an
excess as with the Jains, who shed no blood. Celibacy is not imposed
upon the priests of Kanhaiya, as upon those of Siva: on the contrary,
they are enjoined to marry, and the priestly office is hereditary by
descent. Their wives do not burn, but are committed, like themselves, to
the earth. They inculcate tenderness towards all beings; though whether
this feeling influences the mass, must depend on the soil which receives
the seed, for the outward ceremonies of religion cost far less effort
than the practice or essentials. I have often [532] smiled at the
incessant aspirations of the Macchiavelli of Rajasthan, Zalim Singh,
who, while he ejaculated the name of the god as he told his beads, was
inwardly absorbed by mundane affairs; and when one word would have
prevented a civil war, and saved his reputation from the stain of
disloyalty to his prince, he was, to use his own words, “at fourscore
years and upwards, laying the foundation for another century of life.”
And thus it is with the prince of Marwar, who esteems the life of a man
or a goat of equal value when prompted by revenge to take it. Hope may
silence the reproaches of conscience, and gifts and ceremonies may be
deemed atonement for a deviation from the first principle of their
religion—a benevolence which should comprehend every animated thing. But
fortunately the princely worshippers of Kanhaiya are few in number: it
is to the sons of commerce we must look for the effects of these
doctrines; and it is my pride and duty to declare that I have known men
of both sects, Vaishnava and Jain, whose integrity was spotless, and
whose philanthropy was unbounded.


Footnote 4.19.1:

  Manu commands, “Should the king be near his end through some incurable
  disease, he must bestow on the priests all his riches accumulated from
  legal fines: and having duly committed his kingdom to his son, let him
  seek death in battle, or, if there be no war, by abstaining from food”
  (_Laws_, ix. 323). The annals of all the Rajput States afford
  instances of obedience to this text of their divine legislator. [The
  injunction to seek death by starvation is an addition by the
  commentator, and is not included in the original text.]

Footnote 4.19.2:

  [The practice of a devotee weighing himself against gold was common in
  ancient Hindu times, was known as _tulāpurushadāna_, and is still
  performed by the Mahārāja of Travancore (Thurston, _Tribes and Castes
  of S. India_, vii. 202 ff.; _BG_, i. Part ii. 415; Forbes, _Rāsmāla_,
  84). Akbar used to have himself weighed against precious substances
  twice a year, on his solar and lunar birthdays, the articles being
  given to Brāhmans, and Jahāngīr followed the same custom (_Āīn_, i.
  266 ff.; Elliot-Dowson v. 307, 453; _Memoirs of Jahāngīr_, trans.
  Rogers-Beveridge, 78, 81, 111, 183).]

Footnote 4.19.3:

  [Sāsan, a grant by charter of rent-free lands, made in favour of
  Brāhmans and devotees. For the formula used in such grants see
  Barnett, _Antiquities of India_, 129.]

Footnote 4.19.4:

  [Menāl, Mahānāl, ‘the great chasm,’ in the Begun Estate, E. Mewār.]

Footnote 4.19.5:

  “Saint Eucher, évêque d’Orléans, eut une vision qui étonna les
  princes. Il faut que je rapporte à ce sujet la lettre que les évêques,
  assemblés à Reims, écrivent à Louis-le-Germanique, qui étoit entré
  dans les terres de Charles le Chauve, parce qu’elle est très-propre à
  nous faire voir quel étoit, dans ces temps-là, l’état des choses, et
  la situation des esprits. Ils disent que ‘Saint Eucher ayant été ravi
  dans le ciel, il vit Charles Martel tourmenté dans l’enfer inférieur
  par l’ordre des saints qui doivent assister avec Jésus-Christ au
  jugement dernier; qu’il avoit été condamné à cette peine avant le
  temps pour avoir dépouillé les églises de leurs biens, et s’être par
  là rendu coupable des péchés de tous ceux qui les avoient dotées’”
  (Montesquieu, _L’Esprit des Lois_, livre xxxi. chap. xi. p. 460).

Footnote 4.19.6:

  Genesis xlvii. 20-26.

Footnote 4.19.7:

  Manu, _Laws_, vii. 130.

Footnote 4.19.8:

  _Origin of Laws and Government_, vol. i. p. 54, and vol. ii. p. 13.
  [Herodotus ii. 109.]

Footnote 4.19.9:

  Hallam, _Middle Ages_, vol. ii. p. 212.

Footnote 4.19.10:

  “A Brahman unable to subsist by his duties just mentioned
  (sacerdotal), may live by the duty of a soldier” (Manu x. 81).

Footnote 4.19.11:


Footnote 4.19.12:

  [One of the legendary Rānas, twenty-fifth on the list, to whom no date
  can be assigned.]

Footnote 4.19.13:

  “Le clergé recevoit tant, qu’il faut que, dans les trois races, on lui
  ait donné plusieurs fois tous les biens du royaume. Mais si les rois,
  la noblesse, et le peuple, trouvèrent le moyen de leur donner tous
  leurs biens, ils ne trouvèrent pas moins celui de les leur ôter”
  (Montesquieu, _L’Esprit des Lois_, livre xxxi. chap. x.).

Footnote 4.19.14:

  These worshippers of God and Mammon, when threats fail, have recourse
  to maiming, and even destroying, themselves, to gain their object. In
  1820, one of the confidential servants of the Rana demanded payment of
  the petty tax called _gugri_, of one rupee on each house, from some
  Brahmans who dwelt in the village, and which had always been received
  from them. They refused payment, and on being pressed, four of them
  stabbed themselves mortally. Their bodies were placed upon biers, and
  funeral rites withheld till punishment should be inflicted on the
  priest-killer. But for once superstition was disregarded, and the
  rights of the Brahmans in this community were resumed. See Appendix to
  this Part, No. I [p. 644].

Footnote 4.19.15:

  “Mais le bas peuple n’est guère capable d’abandonner ses intérêts par
  des exemples. Le synode de Francfort lui présenta un motif plus
  pressant pour payer les dîmes. On y fit un capitulaire dans lequel il
  est dit que, dans la dernière famine, on avoit trouvé les épis de blé
  vides, qu’ils avoient été dévorés par les démons, et qu’on avoit
  entendu leurs voix qui reprochoient de n’avoir pas payé la dîme: et,
  en conséquence, il fut ordonné à tous ceux qui tenoient les biens
  ecclésiastiques de payer la dîme, et, en conséquence encore, on
  l’ordonna à tous” (_L’Esprit des Lois_, livre xxxi. chap. xii.).

Footnote 4.19.16:

  These lay Brahmans are not wanting in energy or courage; the sword is
  as familiar to them as the _mala_ (chaplet). The grandfather of
  Ramnath, the present worthy seneschal of the Rana, was governor of the
  turbulent district of Jahazpur, which has never been so well ruled
  since. He left a curious piece of advice to his successors,
  inculcating vigorous measures. “With two thousand men you may eat
  _khichri_; with one thousand _dalbhat_; with five hundred _juti_ (the
  _shoe_)” _Khichri_ is a savoury mess of pulse, rice, butter, and
  spices; _dalbhat_ is simple rice and pulse; _the shoe_ is indelible

Footnote 4.19.17:

  Manu, in his rules on government, commands the king to impart his
  momentous counsel and entrust all transactions to a learned and
  distinguished Brahman (_Laws_, vii. 58). There is no being more
  aristocratic in his ideas than the secular Brahman or priest, who
  deems the bare name a passport to respect. The Kulin Brahman of Bengal
  piques himself upon this title of nobility granted by the last Hindu
  king of Kanauj (whence they migrated to Bengal), and in virtue of
  which his alliance in matrimony is courted. But although Manu has
  imposed obligations towards the Brahman little short of adoration,
  these are limited to the “learned in the Vedas”: he classes the
  unlearned Brahman with “an elephant made of wood, or an antelope of
  leather”; nullities, save in name. And he adds further, that “as
  liberality to a fool is useless, so is a Brahman useless if he read
  not the holy texts”: comparing the person who gives to such an one, to
  a husbandman “who, sowing seed in a barren soil, reaps no gain”; so
  the Brahman “obtains no reward in heaven.” These sentiments are
  repeated in numerous texts, holding out the most powerful inducements
  to the sacerdotal class to cultivate their minds, since their power
  consists solely in their wisdom. For such, there are no privileges too
  extensive, no homage too great. “A king, even though dying with want,
  must not receive any tax from a Brahman learned in the Vedas.” His
  person is sacred. “Never shall the king slay a Brahman, though
  convicted of all possible crimes,” is a premium at least to unbounded
  insolence, and unfits them for members of society, more especially for
  soldiers; banishment, with person and property untouched, is the
  declared punishment for even the most heinous crimes. “A Brahman may
  seize without hesitation, if he be distressed for a subsistence, the
  goods of his Sudra slave.” But the following text is the climax: “What
  prince could gain wealth by oppressing these [Brahmans], who, if
  angry, could frame other worlds, and regents of worlds, and could give
  birth to new gods and mortals?” (Manu, _Laws_, ii. iii. vii. viii.

Footnote 4.19.18:

  Hallam’s _Middle Ages_, vol. i. p. 204.

Footnote 4.19.19:

  These forgeries of charters cannot be considered as invalidating the
  arguments drawn from them, as we may rest assured nothing is
  introduced foreign to custom, in the items of the deeds.

Footnote 4.19.20:

  Suggested by the Author, and executed under his superintendence, who
  waded through all these documents, and translated upwards of a hundred
  of the most curious.

Footnote 4.19.21:

  See the Appendix to this Part, No. II [p. 644].

Footnote 4.19.22:


Footnote 4.19.23:

  See Appendix to this Part, No. III [p. 645].

Footnote 4.19.24:

  Each bundle consists of a specified number of ears, which are roasted
  and eaten in the unripe state with a little salt. [A _ser_ or _seer_ =
  2·057 lbs. avoirdupois.]

Footnote 4.19.25:

  _Dict. de l’Ancien Régime_, p. 131, art. “Corvée.”

Footnote 4.19.26:

  That is, with _one_ (_ek_) _lingam_ or phallus—the symbol of worship
  being a single cylindrical or conical stone. There are others, termed
  _Sahaslinga_ and _Kotiswara_, with a thousand or a million of phallic
  representatives, all minutely carved on the monolithic emblem, having
  then much resemblance to the symbol of Bacchus, whose orgies, both in
  Egypt and Greece, are the counterpart of those of the Hindu Baghis,
  thus called from being clad in a tiger’s or leopard’s hide: Bacchus
  had the panther’s for his covering. There is a very ancient temple to
  Kotiswara at the _embouchure_ of the eastern arm of the Indus; and
  here are many to Sahaslinga in the peninsula of Saurashtra. [Bacchus
  has no connexion with a Hindu tiger-god.]

Footnote 4.19.27:

  It might have appeared fanciful, some time ago, to have given a
  Sanskrit derivation to a Greek proper name: but Europa might be
  derived from _Surupa_, ‘of the beautiful face’—the initial syllable
  _su_ and _eu_ having the same signification in both languages, namely,
  _good_—_Rupa_ is ‘countenance.’ [Europa is probably Assyrian _ereb_,
  _irib_, ‘land of the rising sun’ (_EB_, ix. 907). Another explanation
  is that it is a cult title, meaning ‘goddess of the flourishing
  willow-withies’ (A. B. Cook, _Zeus_, 531).]

Footnote 4.19.28:

  In this sacrifice four altars are erected, for offering the flesh to
  the four gods, Lakshmi-Narayana, Umamaheswar, Brahma, and Ananta. The
  nine planets, and Prithu, or the earth, with her ten guardian-deities,
  are worshipped. Five _Vilwa_, five _Khadira_, five _Palasha_, and five
  _Udumbara_ posts are to be erected, and a bull tied to each post.
  Clarified butter is burnt on the altar, and pieces of the flesh of the
  slaughtered animals placed thereon. This sacrifice was very common
  (Ward, _On the Religion of the Hindus_, vol. ii. p. 263). [Balidāna,
  ‘an offering to the gods.’]

Footnote 4.19.29:

  First a covered altar is to be prepared; sixteen posts are then to be
  erected of various woods; a golden image of a man, and an iron one of
  a goat, with golden images of Vishnu and Lakshmi, a silver one of
  Siva, with a golden bull, and a silver one of Garuda ‘the eagle,’ are
  placed upon the altar. Animals, as goats, sheep, etc., are tied to the
  posts, and to one of them, of the wood of the _mimosa_, is to be tied
  the human victim. Fire is to be kindled by means of a burning glass.
  The sacrificing priest, _hota_, strews the grass called _dub_ or
  immortal, round the sacred fire. Then follows the burnt sacrifice to
  the ten guardian deities of the earth—to the nine planets, and to the
  Hindu Triad, to each of whom clarified butter is poured on the sacred
  fire one thousand times. Another burnt-sacrifice, to the sixty-four
  inferior gods, follows, which is succeeded by the sacrifice and
  offering of all the other animals tied to the posts. The human
  sacrifice concludes, the sacrificing priest offering pieces of the
  flesh of the victim to each god as he circumambulates the altar
  (_ibid_, 260).

Footnote 4.19.30:

  This is to be taken in its literal sense; the economy of the bee being
  displayed in the formation of extensive colonies which inhabit large
  masses of black comb adhering to the summits of the rocks. According
  to the legends of these tracts, they were called in as auxiliaries on
  Muhammadan invasions, and are said to have thrown the enemy more than
  once into confusion. [Stories of idols protected from desecration by
  swarms of hornets are common (_BG_, viii. 401; Sleeman, _Rambles_,

Footnote 4.19.31:

  See Appendix to this Part, No. IV [p. 645].

Footnote 4.19.32:

  In June 1806 I was present at a meeting between the Rana and Sindhia
  at the shrine of Eklinga. The rapacious Mahratta had just forced the
  passes to the Rana’s capital, which was the commencement of a series
  of aggressions involving one of the most tragical events in the
  history of Mewar—the immolation of the Princess Krishna and the
  subsequent ruin of the country. I was then an _attaché_ of the British
  embassy to the Mahratta prince, who carried the ambassador to the
  meeting to increase his consequence. In March 1818 I again visited the
  shrine, on my way to Udaipur, but under very different
  circumstances—to announce the deliverance of the family from
  oppression, and to labour for its prosperity. While standing without
  the sanctuary, looking at the quadriform divinity, and musing on the
  changes of the intervening twelve years, my meditations were broken by
  an old Rajput chieftain, who, saluting me, invited me to enter and
  adore Baba Adam, ‘Father Adam,’ as he termed the phallic emblem. I
  excused myself on account of my boots, which I said I could not
  remove, and that with them I would not cross the threshold: a reply
  which pleased them, and preceded me to the Rana’s court.

Footnote 4.19.33:

  Siva is represented with three eyes: hence his title of Trinetra and
  Trilochan, the Triophthalmic Jupiter of the Greeks. From the fire of
  the central eye of Siva is to proceed Pralaya, or the final
  destruction of the universe: this eye placed vertically, resembling
  the flame of a taper, is a distinguishing mark on the foreheads of his

Footnote 4.19.34:

  I have seen a cemetery of these, each of very small dimensions, which
  may be described as so many concentric rings of earth, diminishing to
  the apex, crowned with a cylindrical stone pillar. One of the
  disciples of Siva was performing rites to the manes, strewing leaves
  of an evergreen [probably bel, _Aegle marmelos_] and sprinkling water
  over the graves.

Footnote 4.19.35:

  For a description of these, vide _Transactions of the Royal Asiatic
  Society_, vol. i. p. 217.

Footnote 4.19.36:

  [The more usual form is Kanphata, with the same meaning.]

Footnote 4.19.37:

  The copy of the _Siva Purana_ which I presented to the Royal Asiatic
  Society was obtained for me by the Rana from the temple of Eklinga.

Footnote 4.19.38:

  Jiva-pitri, the ‘Father of Life,’ would be a very proper epithet for
  Mahadeva, the creative ‘power,’ whose Olympus is Kailas. [Jīva-pitri
  means ‘a child whose father is alive.’ Jupiter=Skt. Dyaus-pitā.]

Footnote 4.19.39:

  Bholanath, or the ‘Simple God,’ is one of the epithets of Siva, whose
  want of reflection is so great that he would give away his own
  divinity if asked.

Footnote 4.19.40:

  Vidyavan, the ‘Man of Secrets or Knowledge,’ is the term used by way
  of reproach to the Jains, having the import of _magician_. Their
  opponents believe them to be possessed of supernatural skill; and it
  is recorded of the celebrated Amara, author of the _Kosa_ or
  dictionary called after him, that he raculously’ “made the full moon
  appear on Amavas”—the ides of the month, when the planet is invisible.

Footnote 4.19.41:

  Khadatara signifies ‘true’ [?], an epithet of distinction which was
  bestowed by that great supporter of the Buddhists or Jains,
  Siddharaj, king of Anhilwara Patan, on one of the branches
  (_gachchha_), in a grand religious disputation (_badha_) at that
  capital in the eleventh century. The celebrated Hemacharya was head
  of the _Khadatara-gachchha_; and his spiritual descendant honoured
  Udaipur with his presence in his visit to his dioceses in the desert
  in 1821. My own Yati tutor was a disciple of Hemacharya, and his
  _pattravali_, or pedigree, registered his descent by spiritual
  successions from him. [For the Jain gachchhas see Bühler, _The
  Indian Sect of the Jainas_, 77 ff. As usual, the author confounds
  Jains with Buddhists.] This pontiff was a man of extensive learning
  and of estimable character. He was versed in all the ancient
  inscriptions, to which no key now exists, and deciphered one for me
  which had been long unintelligible. His travelling library was of
  considerable extent, though chiefly composed of works relating to
  the ceremonies of his religion: it was in the charge of two of his
  disciples remarkable for talent, and who, like himself, were
  perfectly acquainted with all these ancient characters. The pontiff
  kindly permitted my Yati to bring for my inspection some of the
  letters of invitation written by his flocks in the desert. These
  were rolls, some of them several feet in length, containing pictured
  delineations of their wishes. One from Bikaner represented that
  city, in one division of which was the school or college of the
  Jains, where the Yatis were all portrayed at their various studies.
  In another part, a procession of them was quitting the southern gate
  of the city, the head of which was in the act of delivering a scroll
  to a messenger, while the pontiff was seen with his cortège
  advancing in the distance. To show the respect in which these high
  priests of the Jains are held, the princes of Rajputana invariably
  advance outside the walls of their capital to receive and conduct
  them to it—a mark of respect paid only to princes. On the occasion
  of the high priest of the _Khadataras_ passing through Udaipur, as
  above alluded to, the Rana received him with every distinction.

Footnote 4.19.42:

  So called from the town of Osi or Osian, in Marwar [about 30 miles N.
  of Jodhpur city].

Footnote 4.19.43:

  Palitana, or ‘the abode of the Pali’ [?], is the name of the town at
  the foot of the sacred mount Satrunjaya (signifying ‘victorious over
  the foe’), on which the Jain temples are sacred to Buddhiswara, or the
  ‘Lord of the Buddhists’ [?]. I have little doubt that the name of
  Palitana is derived from the pastoral (_pali_) Scythic invaders
  bringing the Buddhist faith in their train—a faith which appears to me
  not indigenous to India [?]. Palestine, which, with the whole of Syria
  and Egypt, was ruled by the Hyksos or Shepherd kings, who for a season
  expelled the old Coptic race, may have had a similar import to the
  _Palitana_ founded by the Indo-Scythic Pali. The Author visited all
  these sacred mounts. [The Author describes Pālitāna in _WI_, 274 ff.;
  see also _BG_, viii. 603 f. All this confusion between Buddhists and
  Jains and the suggested derivation, in which the Author unfortunately
  relied on Wilford (_Asiatic Researches_, iii. 72 ff., viii. 321), are
  out of date.]

Footnote 4.19.44:

  [The Kīrtti-Stambha, erected by a merchant named Jīja in the twelfth
  century A.D., and dedicated to Ādināth, the first Jain Tīrthakara
  (Fergusson, _Hist. Indian Architecture_, ii. 57 ff.; Erskine ii. A.

Footnote 4.19.45:

  [Buddhism and Jainism are again confused. For Buddhist remains in
  Rājputāna see _IGI_, xxi. 103.]

Footnote 4.19.46:

  See Appendix to this Part [p. 645].

Footnote 4.19.47:

  See Appendix to this part [p. 645].

Footnote 4.19.48:

  See Appendix to this article [p. 646].

Footnote 4.19.49:

  [This is the Pachusan, the four months of Jain retreat, the Vassa or
  Vassavāsa of the Buddhists. It was held in the rainy season, during
  which travelling was forbidden, in order to avoid injury to the insect
  life which abounds at this time (_BG_, ix. Part i. 113 f.; Kern,
  _Manual of Indian Buddhism_, 80 f.).]

Footnote 4.19.50:

  Dwarka is at the point called Jagat Khunt, of the Saurashtra
  peninsula. _Ka_ is the mark of the genitive case [?]: _Dwarkanath_
  would be the ‘gate of the god’ [‘Lord of Dvārakā’].

Footnote 4.19.51:

  Fifty-seven descents are given, both in their sacred and profane
  genealogies, from Krishna to the princes supposed to have been
  contemporary with Vikramaditya. The Yadu Bhatti or Shama Bhatti (the
  Ahsham Bhatti of Abu-l Fazl) [_Āīn_, ii. 339], draw their pedigree
  from Krishna or Yadunath, as do the Jarejas of Cutch.

Footnote 4.19.52:

  With Mathura as a centre and a radius of eighty miles, describe a
  circle: all within it is Vraj, which was the seat of whatever was
  refined in Hinduism, and whose language, the Vraj-bhasha, was the
  purest dialect of India. Vraj is tantamount to the land of the
  Suraseni, derived from Sursen, the ancestor of Krishna, whose capital,
  Surpuri, is about fifty miles south of Mathura on the Yamuna (Jumna).
  The remains of this city (Surpuri) the Author had the pleasure of
  discovering. The province of the Surseni, or Suraseni, is defined by
  Manu [_Laws_, ii. 19, vii. 193, who calls them Surasenakas], and
  particularly mentioned by the historians of Alexander.

Footnote 4.19.53:

  Vindravana, or the ‘forests of Vindra,’ in which were placed many
  temples sacred to Kanhaiya, is on the Yamuna, a few miles above
  Mathura. A pilgrimage to this temple is indispensable to the true
  votary of Krishna.

Footnote 4.19.54:

  This river is called the Kal Yamuna, or black Yamuna, and Kalidah or
  the ‘black pool,’ from Kanhaiya having destroyed the hydra Kaliya
  which infested it. Jayadeva calls the Yamuna ‘the blue daughter of the

Footnote 4.19.55:

  [The popular worship of Krishna and Rādha is decidedly erotic.] It
  affords an example of the Hindu doctrine of the Metempsychosis, as
  well as of the regard which Akbar’s toleration had obtained him, to
  mention, that they held his body to be animated by the soul of a
  celebrated Hindu gymnosophist: in support of which they say he (Akbar)
  went to his accustomed spot of penance (_tapasya_) at the confluence
  of the Yamuna and Ganges, and excavated the implements, namely, the
  tongs, gourd, and deer-skin, of his anchorite existence. [For the tale
  of Akbar and the Brāhman Mukunda see _Asiatic Researches_, ix. 158.]

Footnote 4.19.56:

  _Ran_, the ‘field of battle,’ _chhor_, from _chhorna_, ‘to abandon.’
  Hence Ranchhor, one of the titles under which Krishna is worshipped at
  Dwarka, is most unpropitious to the martial Rajput. Kalyavana, the foe
  from whom he fled, and who is figured as a serpent, is doubtless the
  Tak, the ancient foe of the Yadus, who slew Janamejaya, emperor of the
  Pandus. [Kālyavana has been identified with Gonanda I. of Kashmīr, but
  was more probably one of the Bactrian chiefs of the Panjāb (Growse,
  _Mathura_, 3rd ed. 56).]

Footnote 4.19.57:

  See Appendix to this Part, No. VIII [p. 647].

Footnote 4.19.58:

  [The right of sanctuary was maintained until quite recent times
  (Erskine ii. A. 120).]

Footnote 4.19.59:

  The cotton tree, _Bombax malabaracum_, which grows to an immense

Footnote 4.19.60:

  Whoever has unhooded the falcon at a lapwing, or even scared one from
  her nest, need not be told of its peculiarly distressing scream, as if
  appealing to sympathy. The allusion here is to the lapwing scared from
  her nest, as the rival armies of the Kurus and Pandus joined in
  battle, when the compassionate Krishna, taking from an elephant’s neck
  a war-bell (_viraghanta_), covered the nest, in order to protect it.
  When the majority of the feudal nobles of Marwar became self-exiled,
  to avoid the almost demoniac fury of their sovereign, since his
  alliance with the British Government, Anar Singh, the chief of Ahor, a
  fine specimen of the Rathor Rajput, brave, intelligent, and amiable,
  was one day lamenting, that while all India was enjoying tranquillity
  under the shield of Britain, they alone were suffering from the
  caprice of a tyrant; concluding a powerful appeal to my personal
  interposition with the foregoing allegory, and observing on the beauty
  of the office of mediator: “You are all-powerful,” added he, “and we
  may be of little account in the grand scale of affairs; but Krishna
  condescended to protect even the lapwing’s egg in the midst of
  battle.” This brave man knew my anxiety to make their peace with their
  sovereign, and being acquainted with the allegory, I replied with some
  fervour, in the same strain, “Would to God, Thakur Sahib, I had the
  _viraghanta_ to protect you.” The effect was instantaneous, and the
  eye of this manly chieftain, who had often fearlessly encountered the
  foe in battle, filled with tears as, holding out his hand, he said,
  “At least you listen to our griefs, and speak the language of
  friendship. Say but the word, and you may command the services of
  twenty thousand Rathors.” There is, indeed, no human being more
  susceptible of excitement, and, under it, of being led to any
  desperate purpose, whether for good or for evil, than the Rajput.

Footnote 4.19.61:

  Chand, the bard, gives this instance of the compassionate nature of
  Krishna, taken, as well as the former, from the _Mahabharata_. [On
  Krishna worship see J. Kennedy, _JRAS_, October 1907, p. 960 ff.]

Footnote 4.19.62:

   Near the town of Avranches, on the coast of Normandy, is a rock
  called Mont St. Michel, in ancient times sacred to the Galli or Celtic
  Apollo, or Belenus; a name which the author from whom we quote
  observes, “certainly came from the East, and proves that the littoral
  provinces of Gaul were visited by the Phoenicians.”—“A college of
  Druidical priestesses was established there, who sold to seafaring men
  certain arrows endowed with the peculiar virtue of allaying storms, if
  shot into the waves by a young mariner. Upon the vessel arriving safe,
  the young archer was sent by the crew to offer thanks and rewards to
  the priestesses. His presents were accepted in the most graceful
  manner; and at his departure the fair priestesses, who had received
  his embraces, presented to him a number of shells, which afterwards he
  never failed to use in adorning his person” (_Tour through France_).

  When the early Christian warrior consecrated this mount to his
  protector St. Michel, its name was changed from _Mons Jovis_ (being
  dedicated to Jupiter) to _Tumba_, supposed from _tumulus_, a mound;
  but as the Saxons and Celts placed pillars on all these mounts,
  dedicated to the Sun-god Belenus, Bal, or Apollo, it is not unlikely
  that _Tumba_ is from the Sanskrit _thambha_, or _sthambha_, ‘a pillar’

Footnote 4.19.63:


Footnote 4.19.64:

  _Hindupati_, vulgo _Hindupat_, ‘chief of the Hindu race,’ is a title
  justly appertaining to the Ranas of Mewar. It has, however, been
  assumed by chieftains scarcely superior to some of his vassals, though
  with some degree of pretension by Sivaji, who, had he been spared,
  might have worked the redemption of his nation, and of the Rana’s
  house, from which he sprung.

Footnote 4.19.65:

  See Appendix to this paper, Nos. IX. and X. [p. 647].

Footnote 4.19.66:

  Numbers, chap. xxxv. 11, 12.

Footnote 4.19.67:

  Numbers, chap. xxxv. 25, and Joshua, chap. xx. 6. There was an ancient
  law of Athens analogous to the Mosaic, by which he who committed
  ‘_chance-medley_’ should fly the country for a year, during which his
  relatives made satisfaction to the relatives of the deceased. The
  Greeks had _asyla_ for every description of criminals, which could not
  be violated without infamy. Gibbon [ed. W. Smith, iv. 377 f.] gives a
  memorable instance of disregard to the sanctuary of St. Julian in
  Auvergne, by the soldiers of the Frank king Theodoric, who divided the
  spoils of the altar, and made the priests captives: an impiety not
  only unsanctioned by the son of Clovis, but punished by the death of
  the offenders, the restoration of the plunder, and the extension of
  the right of sanctuary five miles around the sepulchre of the holy

Footnote 4.19.68:

  [The chief sanctuaries in Rājputāna are: Nāgor; Barli, a few miles
  distant; Chaupāsni; Udaimandir and Mahmandir, close to Jodhpur. The
  system is a serious obstacle to the detection of crime (General
  Hervey, _Some Records of Crime_, i. 122 f., ii. 327 ff.).]

Footnote 4.19.69:

  [Smith, _Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities_, 3rd ed. i. 235.]

Footnote 4.19.70:

  [iv. 33; L. R. Farnell, _Cults of the Greek States_, iv. 101 ff.]

Footnote 4.19.71:

  [_Perā_, a sweetmeat made of cream, sugar and spices, for which
  Mathura is famous.]

Footnote 4.19.72:

  Pallas gives an admirable and evidently faithful account of the
  worship of Krishna and other Hindu divinities in the city of
  Astrakhan, where a Hindu mercantile colony is established. They are
  termed Multani, from the place whence they migrated—Multan, near the
  Indus. This class of merchants of the Hindu faith is disseminated over
  all the countries, from the Indus to the Caspian: and it would have
  been interesting had the professor given us any account of their
  period of settlement on the western shore of the Caspian Sea. In
  costume and feature, as represented in the plate given by that author,
  they have nothing to denote their origin; though their divinities
  might be seated on any altar on the Ganges. The Multanis of Indeskoi
  Dvor, or ‘Indian court,’ at Astrakhan, have erected a pantheon, in
  which Krishna, the god of all Vaishnava merchants, is seated in front
  of Jagannath, Rama, and his brothers, who stand in the background;
  while Siva and his consort Ashtabhuja ‘the eight-armed,’ form an
  intermediate line, in which is also placed a statue which Pallas
  denominates Murali; but Pallas mistook the flute (_murali_) of the
  divine Krishna for a rod. The principal figure we shall describe in
  his own words. “In the middle was placed a small idol with a very high
  bonnet, called Gupaledshi. At its right there was a large black stone,
  and on the left two smaller ones of the same colour, brought from the
  Ganges, and regarded by the Hindus as sacred. These fossils were of
  the species called Sankara, and appeared to be an impression of a
  bivalve muscle.” Minute as is the description, our judgment is further
  aided by the plate. Gupaledshi is evidently Gopalji, the pastoral
  deity of Vraj (from _gao_, a cow, and _pala_, a herdsman). The
  head-dress worn by him and all the others is precisely that still worn
  by Krishna, in the sacred dance at Mathura: and so minute is the
  delineation that even the _pera_ or sugar-ball is represented,
  although the professor appears to have been ignorant of its use, as he
  does not name it. He has likewise omitted to notice the representation
  of the sacred mount of Govardhana, which separates him from the Hindu
  Jove and the turreted Cybele (Durga), his consort. The black stones
  are the Salagramas, worshipped by all Vaishnavas. In the names of
  ‘Nhandigana and Gori,’ though the first is called a lion saddled, and
  the other a male divinity, we easily recognise Nandi, the
  bull-attendant (_Gana_) of Siva and his consort Gauri. Were all
  travellers to describe what they see with the same accuracy as Pallas,
  they would confer important obligations on society, and might defy
  criticism. It is with heartfelt satisfaction I have to record, from
  the authority of a gentleman who has dwelt amongst the Hindkis of
  Astrakhan, that distance from their ancient abodes has not
  deteriorated their character for uprightness. Mr. Mitchell, from whose
  knowledge of Oriental languages the Royal Asiatic Society will some
  day derive benefit, says that the reputation of these Hindu colonists,
  of whom there are about five hundred families, stands very high, and
  that they bear a preference over all the merchants of other nations
  settled in this great commercial city.

Footnote 4.19.73:

  Other travellers besides Pallas have described Hinduism as existing in
  the remote parts of the Russian empire, and if nominal resemblances
  may be admitted, we would instance the strong analogy between the
  _Samoyedes_ and _Tchoudes_ of Siberia and Finland and the Syama Yadus
  and Joudes of India [?]. The languages of the two former races are
  said to have a strong affinity, and are classed as Hindu-Germanic by
  M. Klaproth, on whose learned work, _Asia Polyglotta_, M. Rémusat has
  given the world an interesting _critique_, in his _Mélanges
  Asiatiques_ (tome i. p. 267), in which he traces these tribes to
  Central Asia; thus approaching the land of the Getae or Yuti. Now the
  Yutis and Yadus have much in their early history to warrant the
  assertion of more than nominal analogy. The annals of the Yadus of
  Jaisalmer state that long anterior to Vikrama they held dominion from
  Ghazni to Samarkand: that they established themselves in those regions
  after the Mahabharata, or great war; and were again impelled, on the
  rise of Islamism, within the Indus. As Yadus of the race of Sham or
  Syam (a title of Krishna), they would be Sama-Yadus; in like manner as
  the _Bhatti_ tribe are called _Shama-bhatti_, the Ahsham Bhatti of
  Abu-l Fazl. The race of _Joude_ was existing near the Indus in the
  Emperor Babur’s time, who describes them as occupying the mountainous
  range in the first Duab, the very spot mentioned in the annals of the
  Yadus as their place of halt, on quitting India twelve centuries
  before Christ, and thence called Jadu or Yadu-ka-dang, the ‘hills of
  Jadu or Yadu.’ The peopling of all these regions, from the Indus to
  remote Tartary, is attributed to the race of Ayu or Indu, both
  signifying the moon, of which are the Haihayas, Aswas (_Asi_), Yadus,
  etc., who spread a common language over all Western Asia. Amongst the
  few words of Hindu-Germanic origin which M. Rémusat gives to prove
  affinity between the Finnish and Samoyede languages is “_Miel_, _Mod_,
  dans le dialecte Caucasien, et _Méd_, en Slave,” and which, as well as
  _mead_, the drink of the Scandinavian warrior, is from the Sanskrit
  _Madhu_, a bee [honey]. Hence intoxicating beverage is termed
  _Madhva_, which supplies another epithet for Krishna, _Madhu_ or
  _Madhava_. [These speculations possess no value.]

Footnote 4.19.74:

  _Origin of Laws and Government._

Footnote 4.19.75:

  Literally ‘the giver of food.’

Footnote 4.19.76:

  _Kanhaiya ka kantha bāndhna_, ‘to bind on [the neck] the chaplet of
  Kanhaiya,’ is the initiatory step.

Footnote 4.19.77:

  I had one day thrown my net into this lake, which abounded with a
  variety of fish, when my pastime was interrupted by a message from the
  regent, Zalim Singh: “Tell Captain Tod that Kotah and all around it
  are at his disposal; but these fish belong to Kanhaiya.” I, of course,
  immediately desisted, and the fish were returned to the safeguard of
  the deity. [The killing of fish at certain lakes and streams is
  forbidden on account of their harmlessness (_ahimsā_), and thus
  naturally associated with the cult of a gentle deity like Krishna, and
  because they are believed to contain the spirits of the dead (Stein,
  _Rājatarangini_, i. 185; Crooke, _Things Indian_, 221 ff.).]

Footnote 4.19.78:

  A Nishan, or standard, is synonymous with a company.

Footnote 4.19.79:

  Sheopur or Sivapur, the city of Sheo or Siva, the god of war, whose
  battle-shout is _Har_; and hence one of Vishnu’s epithets, as Hari is
  that of Krishna or Kanhaiya.

Footnote 4.19.80:

  Radha was the name of the chief of the Gopis or nymphs of Vraj, and
  the beloved of Kanhaiya.

Footnote 4.19.81:

  In October 1807 I rambled through all these countries, then scarcely
  known by name to us. At that time Sheopur was independent, and its
  prince treated me with the greatest hospitality. In 1809 I witnessed
  its fall, when following with the embassy in the train of the Mahratta
  leader. [It is now included in the Gwalior State (_IGI_, xxii. 271


                               CHAPTER 20

=Krishna.=—Hari, Krishna, familiarly Kanhaiya,[4.20.1] was of the
celebrated tribe of Yadu, the founder of the fifty-six tribes[4.20.2]
who obtained the universal sovereignty of India, and descended from
Yayati, the third son[4.20.3] of Swayambhuva Manu,[4.20.4] or ‘The Man,
Lord of the earth,’ whose daughter Ila[4.20.5] (_Terra_) was espoused by
Budha (Mercury), son of Chandra[4.20.6] (the Moon), whence the Yadus are
styled Chandravansi, or ‘children of the moon.’ Budha was therefore
worshipped as the great [533] ancestor (_Pitrideva_) of the lunar race;
and previous to the apotheosis of Krishna, was adored by all the Yadu
race. The principal shrine of Budha was at Dwarka, where he still
receives adoration as Budha Trivikrama.[4.20.7] Kanhaiya lived towards
the conclusion of the brazen age, calculated to have been about 1100 to
1200 years before Christ.[4.20.8] He was born to the inheritance of
Vraj, the country of the Suraseni, comprehending the territory round
Mathura for a space of eighty miles, of which he was unjustly deprived
in his infancy by his relative Kansa. From its vicinity to Delhi we may
infer either that there was no lord paramount amongst the Yadus of this
period, or that Krishna’s family held as vassals of Hastinapur, then,
with Indraprastha or Delhi, the chief seat of Yadu power. There were two
princes named Surasen amongst the immediate predecessors of Krishna:
one, his grandfather, the other eight generations anterior. Which of
these was the founder of Suryapur on the Yamuna, the capital of the
Yadus,[4.20.9] we know not, but we may assume that the first gave his
name to the region around Mathura, described by Arrian as the country of
the Suraseni. Alexander was in India probably about eight centuries
after the deification of Krishna, and it is satisfactory to find that
the inquiries he instituted into the genealogy of the dynasty then
ruling on the [534] Yamuna correspond very closely with those of the
Yadus of this distant period; and combined with what Arrian says of the
origin of the Pandus, it appears indisputable that the descendants of
this powerful branch of the Yadus ruled on the Yamuna when the
Macedonian erected the altars of Greece on the Indus. That the personage
whose epithets of Krishna-Syam designate his colour as ‘the Black
Prince,’ was in fact a distinguished chief of the Yadus, there is not a
shadow of doubt; nor that, after his death, they placed him among the
gods as an incarnation of Vishnu or the Sun; and from this period we may
induce the Hindu notion of their Trinity. Arrian[4.20.10] enumerates the
names of Boudyas (Βουδύας) and Kradeuas (Κραδεύας) amongst the early
ancestors of the tribe then in power, which would alone convince us that
Alexander had access to the genealogies of the Puranas; for we can have
little hesitation in affirming these to be Budha and Kroshti, ancestors
of Krishna; and that “Mathora and Cleisobora, the chief cities of the
Suraseni,” are the Mathura and Suryapur occupied by the descendants of
Sursen.[4.20.11] Had Arrian afforded as many hints for discussing the
analogy between the Hindu and Grecian Apollos as he has for the Hercules
of Thebes and India, we might have come to a conclusion that the three
chief divinities[4.20.12] of Egypt, Greece, and India had their altars
first erected on the Indus, Ganges, and Jumna.

=Sun and Moon Worship.=—The earliest objects of adoration in these
regions were the sun and moon, whose names designated the two grand
races, Surya and Chandra of Indu. Budha, son of Indu, married Ila, a
grandchild of Surya, from which union sprung the Indu race. They deified
their ancestor Budha, who continued to be the chief object of adoration
until Krishna: hence the worship of Balnath[4.20.13] and Budha[4.20.14]
were coeval. That the Nomadic tribes of Arabia, as well as those of
Tartary and India, adored the same objects, we learn from the earliest
writers; and Job, the probable contemporary of Hasti, the founder of the
first capital of the Yadus on the Ganges, boasts in the midst of his
griefs that he had always remained uncorrupted by the Sabaeism which
surrounded him. “If I beheld the sun when it shined, or the moon walking
in brightness, and my mouth had kissed my hand, this also were an
iniquity to be punished by the judge, for I should have denied the [535]
God that is above.”[4.20.15] That there were many Hindus who, professing
a pure monotheism like Job, never kissed the hand either to Surya or his
herald Budha, we may easily credit from the sublimity of the notions of
the ‘One God,’ expressed both by the ancients and moderns, by poets and
by princes, of both races;[4.20.16] but more especially by the sons of
Budha, who for ages bowed not before graven images, and deemed it
impious to raise a temple to

              The Spirit in whose honour shrines are weak.

Hence the Jains, the chief sect of the Buddhists,[4.20.17] so called
from adoring the spirit (Jina), were untinctured with idolatry until the
apotheosis of Krishna,[4.20.18] whose mysteries superseded the simpler
worship of Budha. Neminath (the deified Nemi) was the pontiff of Budha,
and not only the contemporary of Krishna, but a Yadu, and his near
relation; and both had epithets denoting their complexion; for Arishta,
the surname of Nemi, has the same import as Syam and Krishna, ‘the
black,’ though the latter is of a less Ethiopic hue than Nemi.[4.20.19]
It was anterior to this schism amongst the sons of Budha that the
creative power was degraded under sensual forms, when the pillar rose to
Bal or Surya in Syria and on the Ganges: and the serpent, “subtlest
beast of all the field,” worshipped as the emblem of wisdom (Budha), was
conjoined with the symbol of the creative power, as at the shrine of
Eklinga, where the brazen serpent is wreathed round the lingam.[4.20.20]
Budha’s descendants, the Indus, preserved the Ophite sign of their race,
when Krishna’s followers adopted the eagle as his symbol. These, with
the adorers of Surya, form the three idolatrous classes of India, not
confined to its modern [536] restricted definition, but that of
antiquity, when Industhan or Indu-Scythia extended from the Ganges to
the Caspian. In support of the position that the existing polytheism was
unknown on the rise of Vaishnavism, we may state, that in none of the
ancient genealogies do the names of such deities appear as proper names
in society, a practice now common; and it is even recorded that the
rites of magic, the worship of the host of heaven, and of idols, were
introduced from Kashmir, between the periods of Krishna and Vikrama. The
powers of nature were personified, and each quality, mental and
physical, had its emblem, which the Brahmans taught the ignorant to
adopt as realities, till the pantheon become so crowded that life would
be too short to acquire even the nomenclature of their ‘thirty-three
millions of gods.’[4.20.21] No object was too high or too base, from the
glorious Orb to the Rampi, or paring-knife of the shoemaker. In
illustration of the increase of polytheism, I shall describe the seven
forms under which Krishna is worshipped, whose statues are established
in the various capitals of Rajasthan, and are occasionally brought
together at the festival of Annakuta at Nathdwara.

The international wars of the Suryas and the Yadu races, as described in
the Ramayana and Mahabharata, are lost between allegory and literal
interpretation. The Suryas, or Saivas, were depressed; and the Indus,
who counted ‘fifty-six’ grand tribes, under the appellations of Takshak,
‘serpent,’ Aswa, ‘horse,’ Sasa, ‘hare,’ etc., etc., had paramount sway.
Krishna’s schism produced a new type, that of the eagle, and the wars of
the schismatics were depicted under their respective emblems, the eagle
and serpent, of which latter were the Kauravas and Takshaks,[4.20.22]
the political adversaries of the Pandus, the relatives of Krishna. The
[537] allegory of Krishna’s eagle pursuing the serpent Budha, and
recovering the books of science and religion with which he fled, is an
historical fact disguised: namely, that of Krishna incorporating the
doctrines of Budha with his own after the expulsion of the sect from
India. Dare we further attempt to lift the veil from this mystery, and
trace from the seat of redemption of lost science its original
source?[4.20.23] The Gulf of Cutch, the point where the serpent
attempted to escape, has been from time immemorial to the present day
the entrepôt for the commerce of Sofala, the Red Sea, Egypt, and Arabia.
There Budha Trivikrama, or Mercury, has been and is yet invoked by the
Indian mariners, especially the pirates of Dwarka. Did Budha or Mercury
come from, or escape to the Nile? Is he the Hermes of Egypt to whom the
‘four books of science,’ like the four Vedas[4.20.24] of the Hindus,
were sacred? The statues of Nemi,[4.20.25] the representative of Budha,
exactly resemble in feature the bust of young Memnon.[4.20.26]

I have already observed that Krishna, before his own deification,
worshipped his great ancestor Budha; and his temple at Dwarka rose over
the ancient shrine of the latter, which yet stands. In an inscription
from the cave of Gaya their characters are conjoined: “Hari who is
Budha.” According to Western mythology, Apollo and Mercury exchanged
symbols, the caduceus for the lyre; so likewise in India their
characters intermingle: and even the Saiva propitiates Hari as the
mediator and disposer of the ‘divine spark’ (_jyoti_) to its reunion
with the ‘parent-flame’:—thus, like Mercury, he may be said to be the
conveyer of the souls of the dead. Accordingly in funeral lamentation
his name only is invoked, and _Hari-bol! Hari-bol!_ is emphatically
pronounced by those conveying the corpse to its final abode. The _vahan_
(_qu._ the Saxon _van_?) or celestial car of Krishna, in which the souls
(_ansa_) of the just are conveyed to Suryamandal, the ‘mansion of the
sun,’ is painted like himself, blue (indicative of space, or as
Ouranos), with the eagle’s head; and here he partakes of the Mercury of
the [538] Greeks, and of Oulios, the preserver or saviour, one of the
titles of Apollo at Delos.[4.20.27]

=The Forms of Krishna.=—The Tatar nations, who are all of Indu race,
like the Rajputs and German tribes, adored the moon as a male divinity,
and to his son, Budha, they assign the same character of mediator. The
serpent is alike the symbol of the Budha of the Hindus, the Hermes of
the Egyptians, and the Mercury of Greece: and the allegory of the
dragon’s teeth, the origin of letters, brought by Cadmus from Egypt, is
a version of the Hindu fable of Kanhaiya (Apollo) wresting the Vedas
(secrets) from Budha or wisdom (Hermes), under his sign, the serpent or
dragon. We might still further elucidate the resemblance, and by an
analysis of the titles and attributes of the Hindu Apollo, prove that
from the Yamuna may have been supplied the various incarnations of this
divinity, which peopled the pantheons of Egypt, Greece, and Rome. As
Nomios, who attended the herds of Admetus, we have Nonita,[4.20.28] the
infantine appellation of Kanhaiya, when he pastured the kine of Kesava
in the woods of Vindra, whence the ceremony of the sons of princes
assuming the crook, and on particular days tending the flocks.[4.20.29]
As Muralidhara, or the ‘flute-holder,’ Kanhaiya is the god of music; and
in giving him the shepherd’s reed instead of the _vina_ or lyre, we may
conjecture that the simple bamboo (_bans_) which formed the first flute
(_bansli_) was in use before the _chahtara_,[4.20.30] the Grecian
cithara,[4.20.31] the first invented lyre of Apollo. Thus from the
six-wired instrument of the Hindus we have the Greek cithara, the
English cithern, and the Spanish guitar of modern [539] days. The
Greeks, following the Egyptians, had but six notes, with their lettered
symbols; and it was reserved for the Italians to add a seventh. Guido
Aretine, a monk in the thirteenth century, has the credit of this. I,
however, believe the Hindus numbered theirs from the heavenly bodies—the
Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn,—hence they had the
regular octave, with its semi-tones: and as, in the pruriency of their
fancy, they converted the ascending and descending notes into _grahas_,
or planetary bodies, so they may have added them to the harmonious
numbers, and produced the _nauragini_, their _nine_ modes of
music.[4.20.32] Could we affirm that the hymns composed and set to music
by Jayadeva, nearly three thousand years ago,[4.20.33] and still chanted
in honour of the Apollo of Vraj, had been handed down with the
sentiments of these mystic compositions (and Sir W. Jones sanctions the
idea), we should say, from their simplicity, that the musicians of that
age had only the diatonic scale; but we have every reason to believe,
from the very elaborate character of their written music, which is
painful and discordant to the ear from its minuteness of subdivision,
that they had also the chromatic scale, said to have been invented by
Timotheus in the time of Alexander, who might have carried it from the
banks of the Indus.

=The Rāsmandal Dance.=—In the mystic dance, the _Rasmandal_, yet
imitated on the annual festival sacred to the sun-god Hari, he is
represented with a radiant crown in a dancing attitude, playing on the
flute to the nymphs encircling him, each holding a musical instrument.

         In song and dance about the sacred hill;
         Mystical dance, which yonder starry sphere
         Of planets and of fixed in all her wheels
         Resembles nearest; mazes intricate,
         Eccentric, intervolved, yet regular
         Then most, when most irregular they seem;
         And in their motions harmony divine
         So smooths her charming tones that God’s own ear
         Listens delighted.
                       MILTON, _Paradise Lost_, Book v. 619-27.

These nymphs are also called the _nauragini_, from _raga_, a mode of
song over which each presides, and _naurasa_, or ‘nine passions,’
excited by the powers [540] of harmony. May we not in this trace the
origin of Apollo and the sacred nine? In the manner described above, the
_rasmandal_ is typical of the zodiacal phenomena; and in each sign a
musical nymph is sculptured in alto-relievo, in the vaulted temples
dedicated to the god,[4.20.34] or in secular edifices by way of
ornament, as in the triumphal column of Chitor. On the festival of the
Janam,[4.20.35] or ‘birth-day,’ there is a scenic representation of
Kanhaiya and the Gopis: when are rehearsed in the mellifluous accents of
the Ionic land of Vraj, the songs of Jayadeva, as addressed by Kanhaiya
to Radha and her companions. A specimen of these, as translated by that
elegant scholar, Sir W. Jones, may not be considered inappropriate here.

=The Songs of Jayadeva.=—I have had occasion to remark
elsewhere,[4.20.36] that the Rajput bards, like the heroic Scalds of the
north, lose no opportunity of lauding themselves; of which Jayadeva, the
bard of the Yadus, has set an eminent example in the opening of ‘the
songs of Govinda.’

“If thy soul be delighted with the remembrance of Hari, or sensible to
the raptures of love, listen to the voice of Jayadeva, whose notes are
both sweet and brilliant.”


  _To face page 630._

The poet opens the first interview of Krishna and Radha with an animated
description of a night in the rainy season, in which Hari is represented
as a wanderer, and Radha, daughter of the shepherd Nanda, is sent to
offer him shelter in their cot.[4.20.37] Nanda thus speaks to Radha:
“The firmament is obscured by clouds; the woodlands are black with
Tamala trees; that youth who roves in the forest will be fearful in the
gloom of night; go, my daughter, bring the wanderer to my rustic
mansion. Such was the command of Nanda the herdsman, and hence arose the
love of Radha and Madhava.”[4.20.38]

The poet proceeds to apostrophize Hari, which the Hindu bard terms
_rupaka_, or ‘personal description’:

“Oh thou who reclinest on the bosom of Kamala, whose ears flame with
gems, and whose locks are embellished with sylvan flowers; thou, from
whom the [541] day-star derived his effulgence, who slewest the
venom-breathing Kaliya, who beamedst like a sun on the tribe of Yadu,
that flourished like a lotus; thou, who sittest on the plumage of
Garuda, who sippest nectar from the radiant lips of Padma, as the
fluttering chakora drinks the moonbeams; be victorious, O Hari.”

Jayadeva then introduces Hari in the society of the pastoral nymphs of
Vraj, whom he groups with admirable skill, expressing the passion by
which each is animated towards the youthful prince with great warmth and
elegance of diction. But Radha, indignant that he should divide with
them the affection she deemed exclusively her own, flies his presence.
Hari, repentant and alarmed, now searches the forest for his beloved,
giving vent at each step to impassioned grief. “Woe is me! she feels a
sense of injured honour, and has departed in wrath. How will she conduct
herself? How will she express her pain in so long a separation? What is
wealth to me? What are numerous attendants? What the pleasures of the
world? How can I invite thee to return? Grant me but a sight of thee,
oh! lovely Radha, for my passion torments me. O God of love! mistake me
not for Siva. Wound me not again. I love already but too passionately;
yet have I lost my beloved. Brace not thy bow, thou conqueror of the
world! My heart is already pierced by arrows from Radha’s eyes, black
and keen as those of the antelope.”

Radha relents and sends a damsel in quest of Hari, whom she finds in a
solitary arbour on the banks of the Yamuna. She describes her mistress
as animated by the same despair which controls him:

“Her face is like a water-lily veiled in the dew of tears, and her eyes
are as moons eclipsed. She draws thy picture and worships it, and at the
close of every sentence exclaims, ‘O Madhava, at thy feet am I fallen!’
Then she figures thee standing before her: she sighs, she smiles, she
mourns, she weeps. Her abode, the forest—herself through thy absence is
become a timid roe, and love is the tiger who springs on her, like Yama,
the genius of death. So emaciated is her beautiful body, that even the
light garland which waves o’er her bosom is a load. The palm of her hand
supports her aching temple, motionless as the crescent rising at eve.
Thus, O divine healer, by the nectar of thy love [542] must Radha be
restored to health; and if thou refusest, thy heart must be harder than
the thunder-stone.”[4.20.39]

The damsel returns to Radha and reports the condition of Hari, mourning
her absence: “Even the hum of the bee distracts him. Misery sits fixed
in his heart, and every returning night adds anguish to anguish.” She
then recommends Radha to seek him. “Delay not, O loveliest of women;
follow the lord of thy heart. Having bound his locks with forest
flowers, he hastens to yon arbour, where a soft gale breathes over the
banks of Yamuna, and there pronouncing thy name, he modulates his divine
reed. Leave behind thee, O friend, the ring which tinkles on thy
delicate ankle when thou sportest in the dance. Cast over thee thy azure
mantle and run to the shady bower.”

But Radha, too weak to move, is thus reported to Hari by the same fair
mediator: “She looks eagerly on all sides in hope of thy approach: she
advances a few steps and falls languid to the ground. She weaves
bracelets of fresh leaves, and looking at herself in sport, exclaims,
behold the vanquisher of Madhu! Then she repeats the name of Hari, and
catching at a dark blue cloud,[4.20.40] strives to embrace it, saying,
‘It is my beloved who approaches.’”

Midnight arrives, but neither Hari nor the damsel returns, when she
gives herself up to the frenzy of despair, exclaiming: “The perfidy of
my friend rends my heart. Bring disease and death, O gale of Malaya!
receive me in thy azure wave, O sister of Yama,[4.20.41] that the ardour
of my heart may be allayed.”

The repentant Hari at length returns, and in speech well calculated to
win forgiveness, thus pleads his pardon:

“Oh! grant me a draught of honey from the lotus of thy mouth: or if thou
art inexorable, grant me death from the arrows of thine eyes; make thy
arms my chains: thou art my ornament; thou art the pearl in the ocean of
my mortal birth! Thine eyes, which nature formed like blue water-lilies,
are become through thy resentment like petals of the crimson lotus! Thy
silence affects me; oh! speak with the voice of music, and let thy sweet
accents allay my ardour” [543].

“Radha with timid joy, darting her eyes on Govinda while she musically
sounded the rings of her ankles and the bells of her zone,[4.20.42]
entered the mystic bower of her beloved. His heart was agitated by her
sight, as the waves of the deep are affected by the lunar orb.[4.20.43]
From his graceful waist flowed a pale yellow robe,[4.20.44] which
resembled the golden dust of the water-lily scattered over its blue
petals.[4.20.45] His locks interwoven with blossoms, were like a cloud
variegated by the moonbeam. Tears of transport gushed in a stream from
the full eyes of Radha, and their watery glances beamed on her best
beloved. Even shame, which had before taken its abode in their dark
pupils, was itself ashamed,[4.20.46] and departed when the fawn-eyed
Radha gazed on the bright face of Krishna.”

The poet proceeds to describe Apollo’s bower on the sable Yamuna, as
‘Love’s recess’; and sanctifies it as

                                ... The ground
          Where early Love his Psyche’s zone unbound.[4.20.47]

In the morning the blue god aids in Radha’s simple toilet. He stains her
eye with antimony “which would make the blackest bee envious,” places “a
circle of musk on her forehead,” and intertwines “a chaplet of flowers
and peacock’s feathers in her dark tresses,” replacing “the zone of
golden bells.” The bard concludes as he commenced, with an eulogium on
the inspirations of his muse, which it is evident were set to music.
“Whatever is delightful in the modes of music, whatever is graceful in
the fine strains of poetry, whatever is exquisite in the sweet art of
love, let the happy and wise learn from the songs of Jayadeva.”

=The Rāsmandal Dance.=—This mystic dance, the _rasmandal_, appears
analogous to the Pyrrhic dance, or the fire-dance of the Egyptians. The
movements of those who personate the deity and his fair companions are
full [544] of grace, and the dialogue is replete with harmony.[4.20.48]
The Chaubes[4.20.49] of Mathura and Vindravana have considerable
reputation as vocalists; and the effect of the modulated and deep tones
of the adult blending with the clear treble of the juvenile performers,
while the time is marked by the cymbal or the soothing monotony of the
tabor, accompanied occasionally by the _murali_ or flute, is very

=Govardhana.=—We have a Parnassus in Govardhana, from which sacred hill
the god derives one of his principal epithets, Gordhan or Gordhannath,
‘God of the mount of wealth.’[4.20.50] Here he first gave proofs of
miraculous power, and a cave in this hill was the first shrine, on his
apotheosis, whence his miracles and oracles were made known to the
Yadus. From this cave (_gupha_) is derived another of his
titles—Guphnath, ‘Lord of the cave,’ distinct from his epithet Gopinath,
‘Lord of the Gopis,’[4.20.51] or pastoral nymphs. On the annual festival
held at Govardhana, the sacred mount is purified with copious oblations
of milk, for which all the cows of the district are in requisition.

=Cave Worship of Krishna.=—The worship of Krishna in ancient days, like
that of Apollo amongst the Greeks, was chiefly celebrated in caves, of
which there were many scattered over India. The most remarkable were
those of Govardhana in Vraj; Gaya in Bihar; Gopnath on the shores of
Saurashtra; and Jalandhara[4.20.52] on the Indus. In these dark and
mysterious retreats superstition had her full influence over the
votaries who sought the commands and deprecated the wrath of the deity:
but, as the Mukhya told the author, “the age of oracles and miracles is
past”; and the new wheel, which was miraculously furnished each
revolving year to supply the place of that which first indicated his
desire to abide at Nathdwara, is no longer forthcoming. The old one,
which was the signal of his wish, is, however, preserved as a relic, and
greatly reverenced. The statue now worshipped at Nathdwara, as the
representative of ‘the god of the mount’ [545], is said to be the
identical image raised in the cave of Govardhana, and brought thence by
the high priest Balba.[4.20.53]

=Krishna a Dragon-Slayer.=—As the destroyer of Kaliyanag, ‘the black
serpent,’ which infested the waters of the Yamuna, Kanhaiya has the
character of the Pythic Apollo. He is represented dragging the monster
from the ‘black stream,’ and bruising him with his foot. He had,
however, many battles with his hydra-foe ere he vanquished him, and he
was once driven by Kalayavana from Vraj to Dwarka, whence his title of
Ranchhor. Here we have the old allegory of the schismatic wars of the
Buddhists and Vaishnavas.

=Parallels to Krishna in other Mythologies.=—Diodorus informs us that
_Kan_ was one of the titles of the Egyptian Apollo as the sun; and
this is the common contraction for Kanhaiya, whose colour is a dark
cerulean blue (_nila_): and hence his name Nilanath, who, like the
Apollo of the Nile, is depicted with the human form and eagle-head,
with a lotus in his hand. S and H are permutable letters in the
Bhakha, and Syam or Sham, the god of the Yamuna, may be the _Ham_ or
Hammon of Egypt. Hari accompanied Rama to Lanka, as did the Egyptian
Apollo, Rameses-Sesostris, on his expedition to India: both were
attended in their expedition by an army of Satyrs, or tribes bearing
the names of different animals: and as we have the Aswas, the
Takshaks, and the Sasas of the Yadu tribes, typified under the horse,
the serpent, and the hare, so the races of Surya, of which Rama was
the head, may have been designated Riksh and Hanuman, or bears and
monkeys. The distance of the Nile from the Indian shore forms no
objection; the sail spread for Ceylon could waft the vessel to the Red
Sea, which the fleets of Tyre, of Solomon, and Hiram covered about
this very time. That the Hindus navigated the ocean from the earliest
ages, the traces of their religion in the isles of the Indian
archipelago sufficiently attest; but on this subject we have already
said enough.

The coincidence between the most common epithets of the Apollos of
Greece and India, as applied to the sun, are peculiarly striking. Hari,
as Bhannath, ‘the lord of beams,’ is Phoebus, and his heaven is Haripur
(Heliopolis), or ‘city of Hari.’[4.20.54] Helios (Ἥλιος) was a title of
Apollo, whence the Greeks had their Elysium, the Haripur or Bhanthan
(the abode of the sun), the highest of the [546] heavens or abodes of
bliss of the martial Rajput. Hence the eagle (the emblem of Hari as the
sun)[4.20.55] was adopted by the western warrior as the symbol of

The Di Majores of the Rajput are the same in number and title as amongst
the Greeks and Romans, being the deities who figuratively preside over
the planetary system. Their grades of bliss are therefore in unison with
the eccentricity of orbit of the planet named. On this account Chandra
or Indu, the moon, being a mere satellite of Ila, the earth, though
probably originating the name of the Indu race, is inferior in the scale
of blissful abodes to that of his son Budha or Mercury, whose heliacal
appearance gave him importance even with the sons of Vaivasvata, the
sun. From the poetic seers of the martial races we learn that there are
two distinct places of reward; the one essentially spiritual, the other
of a material nature. The bard inculcates that the warrior who falls in
battle in the fulfilment of his duty, “who abandons life through the
wave of steel,” will know no “second birth,” but that the unconfined
spark (_jyotis_) will reunite to the parent orb. The doctrine of
transmigration through a variety of hideous forms may be considered as a
series of purgatories.

The Greeks and Celts worshipped Apollo under the title of
Carneios,[4.20.56] which “selon le scholiaste de Théocrite” is derived
from Carnos, “qui ne prophétisoit que des malheurs aux Héraclides lors
de leur incursion dans le Péloponnèse. Un d’eux appelé _Hippotés, le tua
d’un coup de flèche_.” Now one of the titles of the Hindu Apollo is
Karna, ‘the radiant’; from _karna_, ‘a ray’: and when he led the remains
of the Harikulas in company with Baldeva (the god of strength), and
Yudhishthira, after the great international war, into the Peloponnesus
of Saurashtra, they were attacked by the aboriginal Bhils, one of whom
slew the divine Karna with an arrow. The Bhils claim to be of Hayavansa,
or the race of Haya, whose chief seat was at Maheswar on the Nerbudda:
the assassin of Karna would consequently be Hayaputra, or descendant of
Haya[4.20.57] [547].

The most celebrated of the monuments commonly termed Druidic, scattered
throughout Europe, is at Carnac in Brittany, on which coast the Celtic
Apollo had his shrines, and was propitiated under the title of Karneios,
and this monument may be considered at once sacred to the manes of the
warriors and the sun-god Karneios. Thus the Roman Saturnalia, the
_carnivale_, has a better etymology in the festival to Karneios, as the
sun, than in the ‘adieu to flesh’ during the fast. The character of this
festival is entirely oriental, and accompanied with the licentiousness
which belonged to the celebration of the powers of nature. Even now,
although Christianity has banished the grosser forms, it partakes more
of a Pagan than a Christian ceremony.

=The Annakūta Festival.=—Of the festivals of Krishna the Annakuta is the
most remarkable;[4.20.58] when the seven statues were brought from the
different capitals of Rajasthan, and mountains (_kuta_) of food (_anna_)
piled up for their repast, at a given signal are levelled by the myriads
of votaries assembled from all parts. About eighty years ago, on a
memorable assemblage at the Annakuta, before warfare had devastated
Rajasthan, and circumscribed the means of the faithful disciples of
Hari, amongst the multitude of Vaishnavas of every region were almost
all the Rajput princes; Rana Arsi of Mewar, Raja Bijai Singh of Marwar,
Raja Gaj Singh of Bikaner, and Bahadur Singh of Kishangarh. Rana Arsi
presented to the god a _tora_, or massive golden anklet-chain set with
emeralds: Bijai Singh a diamond necklace worth twenty-five thousand
rupees: the other princes according to their means. They were followed
by an old woman of Surat, with infirm step and shaking head, who
deposited four coppers in the hand of the high-priest, which were
received with a gracious smile, not vouchsafed to the lords of the
earth. “The Rand is in luck,” whispered the chief of Kishangarh to the
Rana. Soon afterwards the statue of Hari was brought forth, when the
same old woman placed at its feet a bill of exchange for seventy
thousand rupees. The mighty were humbled, and the smile of the Gosain
was explained. Such gifts, and to a yet greater amount, are, or were, by
no means uncommon from the sons of commerce, who are only known to
belong to the flock from the distinguishing necklace of the

=Interruption of Worship.=—The predatory system which reduced these
countries to a state of the most degraded anarchy, greatly diminished
the number of pilgrimages to Nathdwara [548]; and the gods of Vraj had
sufficient prescience to know that they could guard neither their
priests nor followers from the Pathan and Mahratta, to whom the crown of
the god, or the _nathna_ (nose-jewel) of Radha, would be alike
acceptable: nor would they have scrupled to retain both the deities and
priests as hostages for such imposition as they might deem within their
means. Accordingly, of late years, there had been no congress of the
gods of Vraj, who remained fixtures on their altars till the halcyon
days of A.D. 1818 permitted their liberation.[4.20.60]

=Seven Forms of Krishna.=—The seven statues of Kanhaiya were brought
together by the high-priest Balba, who established the festival of the
Annakuta. They remained in the same sanctuary until the time of
Girdhari, the grandson of Balba, who having seven sons, gave to each a
rupa or statue, and whose descendants continue in the office of priest.
The names and present abodes of the gods are as follows:

Nathji, the god, or Gordhannath, god of the mount Nathdwara.

     1. Nonita                                Nathdwara.
     2. Mathuranath                           Kotah.
     3. Dwarkanath                            Kankroli.[4.20.61]
     4. Gokulnath, or Gokulchandrama          Jaipur.
     5. Yadunath                              Surat.
     6. Vitthalnath[4.20.62]                  Kotah.
     7. Madan Mohana                          Jaipur.

Nathji is not enumerated amongst the forms; he stands supreme.

Nonita, or Nonanda, the juvenile Kanhaiya, has his altar separate,
though close to Nathji. He is also styled Balamukund, ‘the blessed
child,’[4.20.63] and is depicted as an infant with _pera_[4.20.64] or
comfit-ball in his hand. This image, which was one of the penates of a
former age, and which, since the destruction of the shrines of [549]
Krishna by the Islamites, had lain in the Yamuna, attached itself to the
sacerdotal zone (Janeo) of the high-priest Balba, while he was
performing his ablutions, who, carrying it home, placed it in a niche of
the temple and worshipped it: and Nonanda yet receives the peculiar
homage of the high-priest and his family as their household divinity. Of
the second image, Mathuranath, there is no particular mention: it was at
one time at Khamnor in Mewar, but is now at Kotah.

Balkrishna, the third son, had Dwarkanath, which statue, now at Kankroli
in Mewar, is asserted to be the identical image that received the
adoration of Raja Amaraka, a prince of the solar race who lived in the
Satya Yuga, or silver age. The ‘god of the mount’ revealed himself in a
dream to his high-priest, and told him of the domicile of this his
representative at Kanauj. Thither Balba repaired, and having obtained it
from the Brahman, appointed Damodardas Khatri to officiate at his altar.

The fourth statue, that of Gokulnath, or Gokul Chandrama (_i.e._ the
_moon_ of Gokul), had an equally mysterious origin, having been
discovered in a deep ravine on the banks of the river; Balba assigned it
to his brother-in-law. Gokul is an island on the Jumna,[4.20.65] a few
miles below Mathura, and celebrated in the early history of the pastoral
divinity. The residence of this image at Jaipur does not deprive the
little island of its honours as a place of pilgrimage; for the ‘god of
Gokul’ has an altar on the original site, and his rites are performed by
an aged priestess, who disowns the jurisdiction of the high-priest of
Nathdwara, both in the spiritual and temporal concerns of her shrine;
and who, to the no small scandal of all who are interested in Apollo,
appealed from the fiat of the high-priest to the British court of
justice. The royal grants of the Mogul emperors were produced, which
proved the right to lie in the high-priest, though a long period of
almost undisturbed authority had created a feeling of independent
control in the family of the priestess, which they desired might
continue. A compromise ensued, when the Author was instrumental in
restoring harmony to the shrines of Apollo.

The fifth, Yadunath, is the deified ancestor of the whole Yadu race.
This image, now at Surat, formerly adorned the shrine of Mahaban near
Mathura which was destroyed by Mahmud [550].

The sixth, Vitthalnath, or Pandurang,[4.20.66] was found in the Ganges
at Benares, Samvat 1572 (A.D. 1516), from which we may judge of their
habit of multiplying divinities.

The seventh, Madan Mohana, ‘he who intoxicates with desire,’ the
seductive lover of Radha and the Gopis, has his rites performed by a
female. The present priestess of Mohana is the mother of Damodara, the
supreme head of all who adore the Apollo of Vraj.

=The Pontiff of Nāthdwāra.=—I am not aware of the precise period of
Balba Acharya, who thus collected the seven images of Krishna now in
Rajasthan; but he must have lived about the time of the last of the Lodi
kings, at the period of the conquest of India by the Moguls (A.D. 1526).
The present pontiff, Damodara, as before said, is his lineal descendant;
and whether in addressing him verbally or by letter he is styled
Maharaja or ‘great prince.’[4.20.67]

As the supreme head of the Vishnu sect his person is held to be Ansa, or
‘a portion of the divinity’; and it is maintained that so late as the
father of the present incumbent, the god manifested himself and
conversed with the high-priest. The present pontiff is now about thirty
years of age. He is of a benign aspect, with much dignity of demeanour:
courteous, yet exacting the homage due to his high calling: meek, as
becomes the priest of Govinda, but with the finished manners of one
accustomed to the first society. His features are finely moulded, and
his complexion good. He is about the middle size, though as he rises to
no mortal, I could not exactly judge of his height. When I saw him he
had one only daughter, to whom he is much attached. He has but one wife,
nor does Krishna allow polygamy to his priest. In times of danger, like
some of his prototypes in the dark ages of Europe, he poised the lance,
and found it more effective than spiritual anathemas, against those who
would first adore the god, and then plunder him. Such were the Mahratta
chiefs, Jaswant Rao Holkar and Bapu Sindhia. Damodara accordingly made
the [551] tour of his extensive diocese at the head of four hundred
horse, two standards of foot, and two field-pieces. He rode the finest
mares in the country; laid aside his pontificals for the quilted
_dagla_, and was summoned to matins by the kettle-drum instead of the
bell and cymbal. In this he only imitated Kanhaiya, who often mixed in
the ranks of battle, and “dyed his saffron robe in the red-stained
field.” Had Damodara been captured on one of these occasions by any
marauding Pathan, and incarcerated, as he assuredly would have been, for
ransom, the marauder might have replied to the Rana, as did the
Plantagenet king to the Pope, when the surrender of the captive
church-militant bishop was demanded, “Is this thy son Joseph’s coat?”
But, notwithstanding this display of martial principle, which covered
with a helmet the shaven crown, his conduct and character are amiable
and unexceptionable, and he furnishes a striking contrast to the late
head of the Vishnu establishments in Marwar, who commenced with the care
of his master’s conscience, and ended with that of the State; meek and
unassuming till he added temporal[4.20.68] to spiritual power, which
developed unlimited pride, with all the qualities that too often wait on
“a little brief authority,” and to the display of which he fell a
victim. Damodara,[4.20.69] similarly circumstanced, might have evinced
the same failings, and have met the same end; but though endeavours were
made to give him political influence at the Rana’s court, yet, partly
from his own good sense, and partly through the dissuasion of the Nestor
of Kotah (Zalim Singh), he was not entrained in the vortex of its
intrigues, which must have involved the sacrifice of wealth and the
proper dignity of his station [552].


Footnote 4.20.1:

  [Derived, through the Prākrit, from Krishna.]

Footnote 4.20.2:

  _Chhappan kula Yadava._

Footnote 4.20.3:

  _Qu._ Japhet? [?].

Footnote 4.20.4:

  Also called _Vaivaswata Manu_—‘the man, son of the sun.’

Footnote 4.20.5:

  Ila, the earth—the Saxon _Ertha_. The Germans chiefly worshipped
  Tuisco or Teutates and Ertha, who are the Budha or Ila of the Rajputs

Footnote 4.20.6:

  A male divinity with the Rajputs, the Tatars, and ancient Germans.

Footnote 4.20.7:

  ‘Triple Energy’ [‘he who strides over the three worlds’], the Hermes
  Triplex of the Egyptians. [There is no cult of Budha at Dwārka.]

Footnote 4.20.8:

  I shall here subjoin an extract of the rise and progress of
  Vaishnavism as written at my desire by the Mukhya of the temple:

  “Twenty-five years of the Dwapar (the brazen age) were yet unexpired,
  when the incarnation (_avatar_) of Sri Krishna took place. Of these,
  eleven were passed at Gokul,[4.20.8.A] and fourteen at Mathura. There
  he used to manifest himself personally, especially at Govardhan. But
  when the Kaliyug (the iron age) commenced, he retired to Dwarka, an
  island separated by the ocean from Bharatkand,[4.20.8.B] where he
  passed a hundred years before he went to heaven. In Samvat 937 (A.D.
  881) God decreed that the Hindu faith should be overturned, and that
  the Turushka[4.20.8.C] should rule. Then the _jizya_, or capitation
  tax, was inflicted on the head of the Hindu. Their faith also suffered
  much from the Jains and the various infidel (_asura_) sects which
  abounded. The Jains were so hostile, that Brahma manifested himself in
  the shape of Sankaracharya who destroyed them and their religion at
  Benares. In Gujarat, by their magic, they made the moon appear at
  Amavas.[4.20.8.D] Sankara foretold to its prince, Siddhraj,[4.20.8.E]
  the flood then approaching, who escaped in a boat and fled to Toda, on
  which occasion all the Vidyas[4.20.8.F] (magicians) in that country
  perished.” [For a more correct version of Krishna’s legend see Growse,
  _Mathura_, 3rd ed.; for Vaishnavism, R. G. Bhandarkar, “Vaisnavism,
  Saivism and Minor Religious Systems,” in _Grundriss Indo-Arischen
  Philologie und Altertumskunde_, 1913.

Footnote 4.20.8.A:

  A small town in the Jumna, below Mathura. Hence one of Krishna’s
  titles is Gokulnath, ‘Lord of Gokul.’

Footnote 4.20.8.B:

  The channel which separates the island of Dwarka from the mainland is
  filled up, except in spring tides. I passed it when it was dry.

Footnote 4.20.8.C:

  We possess no record of the invasion of India in A.D. 881, by the
  Turki tribes, half a century after Mamun’s expedition from Zabulistan
  against Chitor, in the reign of Rawal Khuman [?].

Footnote 4.20.8.D:

  The ides of the month, when the moon is obscured.

Footnote 4.20.8.E:

  He ruled Samvat 1151 (A.D. 1095) to S. 1201 (A.D. 1145).

Footnote 4.20.8.F:

  Still used as a term of reproach to the Jains and Buddhists, in which,
  and other points, as _Ari_ (the foe, qu. _Aria_?), they bear a strong
  resemblance to the followers of the Arian Zardusht, or Zoroaster.
  Amongst other peculiarities, the ancient Persian fire-worshipper, like
  the present Jain, placed a bandage over the mouth while worshipping.

Footnote 4.20.9:

  For an account of the discovery of the remains of this ancient city,
  see _Transactions of the Royal Asiatic Society_, vol. i. p. 314.

Footnote 4.20.10:

  [Arrian, _Indika_, viii.]

Footnote 4.20.11:

  [Growse (_Mathura_, 279) suggests that Cleisobora is Krishnapura,
  ‘Krishna’s city.’]

Footnote 4.20.12:

  Hercules, Mercury, and Apollo; _Balaram_, _Budha_, and _Kanhaiya_.

Footnote 4.20.13:

  The ‘God Bal,’ the Vivifier, the Sun [?].

Footnote 4.20.14:

  Budha signifies ‘wisdom.’

Footnote 4.20.15:

  Job chap. xxxi. 26, 27, 28.

Footnote 4.20.16:

  Chand, the bard, after having separately invoked the three persons of
  the Hindu triad, says that he who believes them distinct, “hell will
  be his portion.”

Footnote 4.20.17:

  [The Jains were not a Buddhist sect.]

Footnote 4.20.18:

  A very curious cause was assigned by an eminent Jain priest for the
  innovation of enshrining and worshipping the forms of the twenty-four
  pontiffs: namely, that the worship of Kanhaiya, before and after the
  apotheosis, became quite a rage amongst the women, who crowded his
  shrines, drawing after them all the youth of the Jains; and that, in
  consequence, they made a statue of Neminath to counteract a fervour
  that threatened the existence of their faith. It is seldom we are
  furnished with such rational reasons for religious changes.

Footnote 4.20.19:

  [Neminātha was the twenty-second Jain Tīrthakara or deified saint.
  Arishta means ‘unhurt, perfect.’]

Footnote 4.20.20:

  It was the serpent (Budha) who ravished Ila, daughter of Ikshwaku, the
  son of Manu, whence the distinctive epithet of his descendants in the
  East, _Manus_, or men, the very tradition on an ancient sculptured
  column in the south of India, which evidently points to the primeval
  mystery. In Portici there is an exact _lingam_ entwined with a brazen
  serpent, brought from the temple of Isis at Pompeii: and many of the
  same kind, in mosaic, decorate the floors of the dwelling-houses. But
  the most singular coincidence is in the wreaths of _lingams_ and the
  _yoni_ over the door of the minor temple of Isis at Pompeii; while on
  another front is painted the rape of Venus by Mercury (Budha and Ila).
  The Lunar race, according to the Puranas, are the issue of the rape of
  Ila by Budha. _Aphah_ is a serpent in Hebrew. _Ahi_ and _Sarpa_ are
  two of its many appellations in Sanskrit. [These speculations are now

Footnote 4.20.21:

  _Taintīs kror devata._

Footnote 4.20.22:

  The Mahabharata records constant wars from ancient times amongst the
  children of Surya (the sun), and the Tak or Takshak (serpent races).
  The horse of the sun, liberated preparatory to sacrifice, by the
  father of Rama, was seized by the Takshak Ananta; and Janamejaya, king
  of Delhi, grandson of Pandu, was killed by one of the same race. In
  both instances the Takshak is literally rendered the _snake_. The
  successor of Janamejaya carried war into the seats of this Tak or
  serpent race, and is said to have sacrificed 20,000 of them in
  revenge; but although it is specifically stated that he subsequently
  compelled them to sign tributary engagements (_paenama_), the Brahmans
  have nevertheless distorted a plain historical fact by a literal and
  puerile interpretation. The Paraitakai (_Mountain-Tak_) of Alexander
  were doubtless of this race, as was his ally Taxiles, which
  appellation was titular, as he was called Omphis till his father’s
  death. It is even probable that this name is the Greek Ὄφις, in which
  they recognized the tribe of the Tak or Snake. Taxiles may be
  compounded of is, ‘lord or chief,’ _sila_, ‘rock or mountain,’ and
  Tak, ‘lord of the mountain Tak,’ whose capital was in the range west
  of the Indus. We are indebted to the Emperor Babur for the exact
  position of the capital of this celebrated race, which he passed in
  his route of conquest. We have, however, an intermediate notice of it
  between Alexander and Babur, in the early history of the Yadu Bhatti,
  who came in conflict with the Taks on their expulsion from Zabulistan
  and settlement in the Panjab. [The Paraitakai or Paraitakenai have no
  connexion with Tāk or Takshak, the first part of the name perhaps
  representing Skt. _parvata_, ‘a mountain,’ or _pahār_ in the modern
  dialect. They lived in the hill country between the rivers Oxus and
  Jaxartes (McCrindle, _Alexander_, 57). Omphis represents the Āmbhi,
  king of Taxila, a name supposed to mean ‘rock of the Tāk tribe’
  (_ibid._ 413; Smith, _EHI_, 60), or, more probably, ‘city of cut

Footnote 4.20.23:

  The Buddhists appeared in this peninsula and the adjacent continent
  was the cradle of Buddhism, and here are three of the ‘five’ sacred
  mounts of their faith, _i.e._ Girnar, Satrunjaya and Abu. The Author
  purposes giving, hereafter, an account of his journey through these
  classic regions. [He refers to Jains; Buddhism arose in Bihār.]

Footnote 4.20.24:

  The Buddhists and Jains are stigmatized as _Vidyavan_, which,
  signifying ‘possessed of science,’ is interpreted ‘magician.’

Footnote 4.20.25:

  He is called Arishta-Nemi, ‘the black Nemi,’ from his complexion.

Footnote 4.20.26:

  [The connexion of Hindu with Egyptian beliefs is no longer admitted.]

Footnote 4.20.27:

  The Sun-god (Kan, according to Diodorus) is the Minos of the
  Egyptians. The hieroglyphics at Turin represent him with the head of
  an ibis, or eagle, with an altar before him, on which a shade places
  his offerings, namely, a goose, cakes of bread, and flowers of the
  lotus, and awaits in humble attitude his doom. In Sanskrit the same
  word means _soul_, _goose_, and _swan_ [?], and the Hindu poet is
  always punning upon it; though it might be deemed a levity to
  represent the immaterial portion under so unclassical an emblem. The
  lotus flowers are alike sacred to the Kan of the Egyptians as to
  Kanhaiya the mediator of the Hindus, and both are painted blue and
  bird-headed. The claims of Kanhaiya (contracted Kan) as the sun
  divinity of the Hindus will be abundantly illustrated in the account
  of the festivals. [The above theories are obsolete.]

Footnote 4.20.28:

  I do not mean to derive any aid from the resemblance of names, which
  is here merely accidental. [Nonīta probably = _Navanīta_, ‘fresh
  butter,’ a dairy god (Macdonell-Keith, _Vedic Index_, i. 437).]

Footnote 4.20.29:

  When I heard the octogenarian ruler of Kotah ask his grandson,
  “Bapalal, have you been tending the cows to-day?” my surprise was
  converted into pleasure on the origin of the custom being thus
  classically explained.

Footnote 4.20.30:

  From _chha_, ‘six,’ and _tar_, ‘a string or wire.’

Footnote 4.20.31:

  Strabo says the Greeks consider music as originating from Thrace and
  Asia, of which countries were Orpheus, Musaeus, etc.; and that others
  “who regard all Asia, as far as India, as a country sacred to Dionysus
  (Bacchus), attribute to that country the invention of nearly all the
  science of music. We perceive them sometimes describing the cithara of
  the Asiatic, and sometimes applying to flutes the epithet of Phrygian.
  The names of certain instruments, such as the _nabla_, and others
  likewise, are taken from barbarous tongues.” This _nabla_ of Strabo is
  possibly the _tabla_, the small tabor of India. If Strabo took his
  orthography from the Persian or Arabic, a single point would
  constitute the difference between the _N_ (ن) and the _T_ (ﺕ). [The
  Arabic _tabl_, _tabla_, has no connexion with Greek νάβλα, Hebrew

Footnote 4.20.32:

  An account of the state of musical science amongst the Hindus of early
  ages, and a comparison between it and that of Europe, is yet a
  desideratum in Oriental literature. From what we already know of the
  science, it appears to have attained a theoretical precision yet
  unknown to Europe, and that at a period when even Greece was little
  removed from barbarism. The inspirations of the bards of the first
  ages were all set to music; and the children of the most powerful
  potentates sang the episodes of the great epics of Valmiki and Vyasa.
  There is a distinguished member of the Royal Asiatic Society, and
  perhaps the only one, who could fill up this hiatus; and we may hope
  that the leisure and inclination of the Right Honourable Sir Gore
  Ousely will tempt him to enlighten us on this most interesting point.

Footnote 4.20.33:

  [The lyrical drama of Jayadeva, _Gītagovinda_, dates from the twelfth
  century A.D. (Macdonell, _Hist. Sanskrit Literature_, 344 f.).]

Footnote 4.20.34:

  I have often been struck with a characteristic analogy in the
  sculptures of the most ancient Saxon cathedrals in England and on the
  Continent, to Kanhaiya and the Gopis. Both may be intended to
  represent divine harmony. Did the Asi and Jits of Scandinavia, the
  ancestors of the Saxons, bring them from Asia?

Footnote 4.20.35:

  [The Janamashtami, Krishna’s birthday, is celebrated on the 8th dark
  half of Sāwan (July-August).]

Footnote 4.20.36:

  _Trans. Royal Asiatic Society_, vol. i. p. 146.

Footnote 4.20.37:

  [Rādha was daughter of Vrishabhānu.]

Footnote 4.20.38:

  _Madho_ in the dialect of Vraj.

Footnote 4.20.39:

  We meet with various little philosophical phenomena used as similes in
  this rhapsody of Jayadeva. These aërolites, mentioned by a poet the
  contemporary of David and Solomon, are but recently known to the
  European philosopher. [But one was worshipped at Rome in B.C. 204.]

Footnote 4.20.40:

  This is, in allusion to the colour of Krishna, a dark blue.

Footnote 4.20.41:

  The Indian Pluto; she is addressing the Yamuna.

Footnote 4.20.42:

  Thus the ancient statues do not present merely the sculptor’s fancy in
  the zone of bells with which they are ornamented.

Footnote 4.20.43:

  This is a favourite metaphor with the bards of India, to describe the
  alternations of the exciting causes of love; and it is yet more
  important as showing that Jayadeva was the philosopher as well as the
  poet of nature, in making the action of the moon upon the tides the
  basis of this beautiful simile.

Footnote 4.20.44:

  This yellow robe or mantle furnishes another title of the Sun-god,
  namely, _Pitambara_, typical of the resplendence which precedes his
  rising and setting.

Footnote 4.20.45:

  It will be again necessary to call to mind the colour of Krishna, to
  appreciate this elegant metaphor.

Footnote 4.20.46:

  This idea is quite new.

Footnote 4.20.47:

  _Childe Harold_, Canto iii.

Footnote 4.20.48:

  The anniversary of the birth of Kanhaiya is celebrated with splendour
  at Sindhia’s court, where the author frequently witnessed it, during a
  ten years’ residence.

Footnote 4.20.49:

  The priests of Kanhaiya, probably so called from the _chob_ or club
  with which, on the annual festival, they assault the castle of Kansa,
  the tyrant usurper of Krishna’s birthright, who, like Herod, ordered
  the slaughter of all the youth of Vraj, that Krishna might not escape.
  These _Chaubēs_ are most likely the _Sobii_ of Alexander, who occupied
  the chief towns of the Panjab, and who, according to Arrian,
  worshipped Hercules (Hari-kul-es, chief of the race of Hari), and were
  armed with clubs. The mimic assault of Kansa’s castle by some hundreds
  of these robust church militants, with their long clubs covered with
  iron rings, is well worth seeing. [The Chaubē Brāhmans of Mathura do
  not take their name from _Chob_, ‘a club,’ but from Skt.
  _Chaturvedin_, ‘learned in the four Vedas.’ By the Sobii the Author
  means the Sibi or Sivaya, inhabiting a district between the Hydaspes
  and the Indus (McCrindle, _Alexander_, 366). They have no possible
  connexion with the Mathura Chaubēs.]

Footnote 4.20.50:

  [Govardhana means ‘nourisher of cattle.’]

Footnote 4.20.51:

  [The title Guphanātha is not recorded.]

Footnote 4.20.52:

  Jalandhara on the Indus is described by the Emperor Babur as a very
  singular spot, having numerous caves. The deity of the caves of
  Jalandhara is the tutelary deity of the Prince of Marwar. [When the
  body of Daksha was cut up, the breast fell at Jālandhar; the Daitya
  king, Jālandhara, was crushed by Siva under the Jawālamukhi hill
  (_Āīn_, ii. 314 f.).]

Footnote 4.20.53:

  [Cave worship does not seem to be specially connected with the cult of
  Krishna. The mention of the cave at Govardhan seems to refer to the
  legend of Krishna protecting the people of Braj from a storm sent by
  Indra, by holding the hill over them (Growse, _op. cit._ 60). The Gaya
  caves are Buddhistic, and have no connexion with Krishna (_IGI_, xii.
  198 f.). Guphanāth does not seem to be a Krishna title, and the cave
  of Gopnāth in Kāthiāwar is said to derive its name from Gopsinghji, a
  Gohil prince, who reigned in the sixteenth century (_BG_, viii. 445).]

Footnote 4.20.54:

  “In Hebrew _heres_ signifies the sun, but in Arabic the meaning of the
  radical word is to guard, preserve; and of _haris_, guardian,
  preserver” (Volney’s _Ruins of Empires_, p. 316). [Needless to say,
  Elysium (Ἠλύσιον πεδίον) has no connexion with Ἥλιος, the sun.]

Footnote 4.20.55:

  The heaven of Vishnu, Vaikuntha, is entirely of gold, and 80,000 miles
  in circumference. Its edifices, pillars, and ornaments are composed of
  precious stones. The crystal waters of the Ganges form a river in
  Vaikuntha, where are lakes filled with blue, red, and white
  water-lilies, each of a hundred and even a thousand petals. On a
  throne glorious as the meridian sun resting on water-lilies, is
  Vishnu, with Lakshmi or Sri, the goddess of abundance (the Ceres of
  the Egyptians and Greeks), on his right hand, surrounded by spirits
  who constantly celebrate the praise of Vishnu and Lakshmi, who are
  served by his votaries, and to whom the eagle (_garuda_) is
  door-keeper (Extract from the Mahabharata—See Ward on the _History and
  Religion of the Hindus_, vol. ii. p. 14).

Footnote 4.20.56:

  [Apollo Κάρνειος was probably ‘the horned god,’ connected with κέρας,
  ‘a horn,’ as a deity of herdsmen (Farnell, _Cults of the Greek
  States_, iv. 131).]

Footnote 4.20.57:

  Supposing these coincidences in the fabulous history of the ancient
  nations of Greece and Asia to be merely fortuitous, they must excite
  interest; but conjoined with various others in the history of the
  Herikulas of India and the Heraclidae of Greece, I cannot resist the
  idea that they were connected [?].

Footnote 4.20.58:

  [The Annakūta festival, held on the first day of the light half of
  Kārttik (Oct.-Nov.). This was the old name of the hill which Krishna
  held aloft to protect his people (Growse, _op. cit._ 300).]

Footnote 4.20.59:

  Gibbon records a similar offering of 200,000 sesterces to the Roman
  church, by a stranger, in the reign of Decius [ed. W. Smith, ii. 199].

Footnote 4.20.60:

  I enjoyed no small degree of favour with the supreme pontiff of the
  shrine of Apollo and all his votaries, for effecting a meeting of the
  seven statues of Vishnu in 1820. In contriving this I had not only to
  reconcile ancient animosities between the priests of the different
  shrines, in order to obtain a free passport for the gods, but to
  pledge myself to the princes in whose capitals they were established,
  for their safe return: for they dreaded lest bribery might entice the
  priests to fix them elsewhere, which would have involved their loss of
  sanctity, dignity, and prosperity. It cost me no little trouble, and
  still more anxiety, to keep the assembled multitudes at peace with
  each other, for they are as outrageous as any sectarians in contesting
  the supreme power and worth of their respective forms (_rupa_). Yet
  they all separated, not only without violence, but without even any
  attempt at robbery, so common on such occasions.

Footnote 4.20.61:

  [Kānkroli, 36 miles N.E. of Udaipur city: the image is said to have
  been brought from Mathura A.D. 1669 (Erskine ii. A. 113).]

Footnote 4.20.62:

  [The form of Vishnu worshipped at Pāndharpur in Sholapur District. The
  name is probably a local corruption of Vishnupati, ‘Lord Vishnu,’
  through the forms Bistu or Bittu (_IA_, iv. 361).]

Footnote 4.20.63:

  [Said to mean ‘the child, giver of liberation.’]

Footnote 4.20.64:

  The _pera_ of Mathura can only be made from the waters of the Yamuna,
  from whence it is still conveyed to Nonanda at Nathdwara, and with
  curds forms his evening repast.

Footnote 4.20.65:

  [Gokul is not an island, but a suburb of Mahāban in Mathura District.]

Footnote 4.20.66:

  [Pāndurang is said to mean ‘white-coloured’; but others believe it to
  be the Sanskritized form of Pandaraga, that is, ‘belonging to
  Pandargē,’ the old name of Pāndharpur (_BG_, xx. 423).]

Footnote 4.20.67:

  Gosain is a title more applicable to the _célibataire_ worshippers of
  Hara than of Hari—of Jupiter than of Apollo. It is alleged that the
  Emperor Akbar first bestowed this epithet on the high-priest of
  Krishna, whose rites attracted his regard. They were previously called
  Dikshit, ‘one who performs sacrifice,’ a name given to a very numerous
  class of Brahmans. The _Gotrācharya_, or genealogical creed of the
  high-priest, is as follows: “_Tailang Brahman_, _Bharadwaja
  gotra_,[4.20.67.A] _Gurukula_,[4.20.67.B] _Taittari sakha_; _i.e._
  Brahman of Telingana, of the tribe of Bharadwaja, of the race of Guru,
  of the branch Taittari.”

Footnote 4.20.67.A:

  Bhāradwaja was a celebrated founder of a sect in the early ages.

Footnote 4.20.67.B:

  Guru is an epithet applied to Vrishapati, ‘Lord of the bull,’ the
  Indian Jupiter, who is called the Guru, preceptor or guardian of the
  gods. [Brihaspati, ‘Lord of prayer,’ the regent of the planet Jupiter,
  is confused with Vrishapati. ‘Lord of the bull,’ an epithet of Siva.]

Footnote 4.20.68:

  The high-priest of Jalandharnath used to appear at the head of a
  cavalcade far more numerous than any feudal lord of Marwar. A sketch
  of this personage will appear elsewhere. These Brahmans were not a jot
  behind the ecclesiastical lords of the Middle Ages, who are thus
  characterized: “Les seigneurs ecclésiatiques, malgré l’humilité
  chrétienne, ne se sont pas montrés moins orgueilleux que les nobles
  laïcs. Le doyen du chapitre de Notre Dame du Port, à Clermont, pour
  montrer sa grande noblesse, officiait avec toute la pompe féodale.
  Étant à l’autel, il avait l’oiseau sur la perche gauche, et on portait
  devant lui la hallebarde; on la lui portait aussi de la même manière
  pendant qu’on chantait l’évangile, et aux processions il avait
  lui-même l’oiseau sur le poing, et il marchait à la tête de ses
  serviteurs, menant ses chiens de chasse” (_Dict. de l’Anc. Régime_, p.

Footnote 4.20.69:

  The first letter I received on reaching England after my long
  residence in India was from this priest, filled with anxious
  expressions for my health, and speedy return to protect the lands and
  sacred kine of Apollo.



                                 No. I

_Grant of the Rathor Rani, the Queen-Mother of Udaipur, on the death of
her Son, the Heir-Apparent, Prince Amra._

Siddh Sri Bari[a4.20.1] Rathorji to the Patels and inhabitants of
Girwa.[a4.20.2] The four bighas of land, belonging to the Jat Roga, have
been assigned to the Brahman Kishna on the Anta Samya (final epoch) of
Lalji.[a4.20.3] Let him possess the rents thereof.[a4.20.4] The dues for
wood and forage (_khar lakar_) contributions (_barar_) are renounced by
the State in favour of the Brahmans.

Samvat 1875, Amavas 15th of Asoj, A.D. 1819.


                                 No. II

_Grant held by a Brahman of Birkhera._

“A Brahman’s orphan was compelled by hunger to seek sustenance in
driving an oil-mill; instead of oil the receptacle was filled with
blood. The frightened oilman demanded of the child who he was; ‘A
Brahman’s orphan,’ was the reply. Alarmed at the enormity of his guilt
in thus employing the son of a priest, he covered the palm of his hand
with earth, in which he sowed the tulasi seed,[4.20a.5] and went on a
pilgrimage to Dwarka. He demanded the presence (_darsana_) of the god;
the priests pointed to the ocean, when he plunged in, and had an
interview with Dwarkanath, who presented him with a written order on the
Rana for forty-five bighas of land. He returned and threw the writing
before the Rana, on the steps of the temple of Jagannath. The Rana read
the writing of the god, placed it on his head, and immediately made out
the grant. This is three hundred and fifty years ago, as recorded by an
inscription on stone, and his descendant, Kosala, yet enjoys it.”

                           (A true Translation.)             J. TOD.

                                No. III

The Palod inscription is unfortunately mislaid; but in searching for it,
another was discovered from Aner, four miles south-west of the ancient
Morwan, where there is a temple to the four-armed divinity
(Chaturbhuja), endowed in Samvat 1570, by Rana Jagat Singh [553]. On one
of the pillars of the temple is inscribed a voluntary gift made in
Samvat 1845, and signed by the village Panch, of the first-fruits of the
harvest, namely, two sers and a half (five pounds weight) from each
_khal_[4.20a.6] of the spring, and the same of the autumnal harvests.

                                 No. IV

Sri Amra Sing (II.) etc., etc.

Whereas the shrine of Sri Pratap-Iswara (the God of Fortune) has been
erected in the meadows of Rasmi, all the groves and trees are sacred to
him; whoever cuts down any of them is an offender to the State, and
shall pay a fine of three hundred rupees, and the _ass_[4.20a.7] shall
be the portion of the officers of government who suffer it.

Pus. 14, Samvat 1712 (A.D. 1656).

                                 No. V

Maharana Sri Raj Singh, commanding.

To the Nobles, Ministers, Patels,[4.20a.8] Patwaris,[4.20a.8] of the ten
    thousand [villages] of Mewar (_das sahas Mewar-ra_), according to
    your stations—read!

1. From remote times, the temples and dwellings of the Jains have been
authorized; let none therefore within their boundaries carry animals to
slaughter—this is their ancient privilege.

2. Whatever life, whether man or animal, passes their abode for the
purpose of being killed, is saved (_amara_).[4.20a.9]

3. Traitors to the State, robbers, felons escaped confinement, who may
fly for sanctuary (_saran_) to the dwellings (_upasra_)[4.20a.10] of the
Yatis,[4.20a.11] shall not there be seized by the servants of the court.

4. The _kunchi_[4.20a.12] (handful) at harvest, the _mutthi_ (handful)
of _kirana_, the charity lands (_dholi_), grounds, and houses,
established by them in the various towns, shall be maintained.

5. This ordinance is issued in consequence of the representation of the
Rikh[4.20a.13] Mana, to whom is granted fifteen bighas of
_adhan_[4.20a.14] land, and twenty-five of _maleti_.[4.20a.14] The same
quantity of each kind in each of the districts of Nimach and
Nimbahera.—Total in three districts, forty-five bighas of _adhan_, and
seventy-five of _mal_[4.20a.15] [554].

On seeing this ordinance, let the land be measured and assigned, and let
none molest the Yatis, but foster their privileges. Cursed be he who
infringes them—the cow to the Hindu—the hog and corpse to the Musalman.

                             (By command.)
    Samvat 1749, Magh sudi 5th, A.D. 1693.     SAH DYAL (Minister).

                                 No. VI

Maharaja Chhattar Singh (one of the Rana’s sons), commanding.

In the town of Rasmi, whoever slays sheep, buffaloes, goats, or other
living thing, is a criminal to the State; his house, cattle, and effects
shall be forfeited, and himself expelled the village.

                             (By command).
   Pus Sudi 14, Samvat 1705, A.D. 1649.      The Pancholi DAMAKA DAS.

                                No. VII

Maharana Jai Singh to the inhabitants of Bakrol; printers, potters,
oilmen, etc., etc., commanding.

From the 11th Asarh (June) to the full moon of Asoj (September), none
shall drain the waters of the lake; no oil-mill shall work, or earthen
vessel be made, during these the four rainy months.[4.20a.16]

                                No. VIII

Maharana Sri Jagat Singh II., commanding.

The village of Siarh in the hills, of one thousand rupees yearly rent,
having been chosen by Nathji (_the_ god) for his residence, and given up
by Rana Raghude,[4.20a.17] I have confirmed it. The Gosain[4.20a.18] and
his heirs shall enjoy it for ever.

Samvat 1793, A.D. 1737.

                                 No. IX

Siddh Sri Maharaja Dhiraj, Maharana Sri Bhim Singhji, commanding.

The undermentioned towns and villages were presented to Sriji[4.20a.19]
by copper-plate. The revenues (_hasil_), [4.20a.20] contributions
(_barar_), taxes, dues (_lagat-be-lagat_), trees, shrubs, foundations
and boundaries (_nim-sim_), shall all belong to Sriji. If of my seed,
none will ever dispute this [555].

The ancient copper-plate being lost, I have thus renewed it.

Here follows a list of thirty-four entire towns and villages, many from
the fisc, or confirmations of the grants of the chiefs, besides various
parcels of arable land, from twenty to one hundred and fifty bighas, in
forty-six more villages, from chiefs of every class, and patches of
meadowland (_bira_) in twenty more.

                                 No. X

Sri Maharana Bhima Singhji, commanding.

To the towns of Sriji, or to the [personal] lands of the
Gosainji,[4.20a.21] no molestation shall be offered. No warrants or
exactions shall be issued or levied upon them. All complaints, suits, or
matters, in which justice is required, originating in Nathdwara, shall
be settled there; none shall interfere therein, and the decisions of the
Gosainji I shall invariably confirm. The town and transit
duties[4.20a.22] (of Nathdwara and villages pertaining thereto), the
assay (_parkhai_)[4.20a.22] fees from the public markets, duties on
precious metals (_kasoti_),[4.a.22] all brokerage (_dalali_), and dues
collected at the four gates; all contributions and taxes of whatever
kind, are presented as an offering to Sriji; let the income thereof be
placed in Sriji’s coffers.

All the products of foreign countries imported by the
Vaishnavas,[4.20a.23] whether domestic or foreign, and intended for
consumption at Nathdwara,[4.20a.24] shall be exempt from duties. The
right of sanctuary (_saran_) of Sriji, both in the town and in all his
other villages,[4.20a.25] will be maintained: the Almighty will take
cognisance of any innovation. Wherefore, let all chiefs, farmers of
duties, beware of molesting the goods of Nathji (_the_ god), and
wherever such may halt, let guards be provided for their security, and
let each chief convey them through his bounds in safety. If of my blood,
or if my servants, this warrant will be obeyed for ever and for ever.
Whoever resumes this grant will be a caterpillar in hell during 60,000

By command—through the chief butler (_Paneri_) Eklingdas: written by
Surat Singh, son of Nathji Pancholi, Magh sudi 1st, Samvat 1865; A.D.

                                 No. XI

Personal grant to the high-priest, Damodarji Maharaj. 6000 Swasti Sri,
from the abode at Udaipur, Maharana Sri Bhim Singhji, commanding [556].

To all the chieftains, landholders, managers of the crown and
_deorhi_[4.20a.26] lands, to all Patels, etc., etc., etc. As an offering
to the Sri Gosainji two rupees have been granted in every village
throughout Mewar, one in each harvest—let no opposition be made thereto.
If of my kin or issue, none will revoke this—the _an_ (oath of
allegiance) be upon his head. By command, through Parihara Mayaram,
Samvat 1860, Jeth sudi 5th Mangalwar; A.D. 1804.

At one side of the patent, in the Rana’s own hand, “An offering to Sri
Girdhariji[4.20a.27] Maharaj—If of my issue none will disobey—who dares,
may the Almighty punish!”

                                No. XII

Maharana Bhim Singh, commanding.

To the Mandir (_minster_) of Sri Murali Manohar (_flute delighting_),
situated on the dam of the lake at Mandalgarh, the following grant has
been made, with all the dues, income, and privileges, viz.:

1. The hamlet called Kotwalkhera, with all thereto appertaining.

2. Three rupees’ worth of saffron monthly from the transit duty

3. From the police-office of Mandalgarh:

          Three tunics (_baga_) for the idol on each festival, viz.
          Ashtami, Jaljatra, and Vasant Panchami.[4.20a.29]

          Five rupees’ worth of oil[4.20a.30] on the Jaljatra, and two
          and a half in the full moon of Karttik [Oct.-Nov.].

4. Both gardens under the dam of the lake, with all the fruits and
flowers thereof.

5. The _Inch_[4.20a.31] on all the vegetables appertaining to the

6. _Kunchi_ and _dalali_, or the handful at harvest, and all brokerage.

7. The income arising from the sale of the estates is to be applied to
the repairs of the temple and dam.

Margsir [Nov.-Dec.] Sudi 1, Samvat 1866; A.D. 1810 [557].


Footnote a4.20.1:

  The great Rathor queen. There were two of this tribe; she was the

Footnote a4.20.2:

  [The tract in the centre of the State, including Udaipur city.]

Footnote a4.20.3:

  An endearing epithet, applied to children, from _larla_, beloved.

Footnote a4.20.4:

  It is customary to call these grants to religious orders ‘grants of
  land,’ although they entitle only the rents thereof; for there is no
  seizin of the land itself, as numerous inscriptions testify, and
  which, as well as the present, prove the proprietary right to be in
  the cultivator only. The _tamba-pattra_,[a4.20.4.A] or copper-plate
  patent (by which such grants are probably designated) of
  Yasodharman,[a4.20.4.B] the Pramara prince of Ujjain, seven hundred
  years ago, is good evidence that the rents only are granted; he
  commands the crown tenants of the two villages assigned to the temple
  “to pay all dues as they arise—money-rent—first share of produce,” not
  a word of seizing of the soil. See _Transactions of the Royal Asiatic
  Society_, vol. i. p. 223.

Footnote a4.20.4.A:

  To distinguish them from grants of land to feudal tenants, which
  patents (_patta_) are manuscript.

Footnote a4.20.4.B:

  [He defeated Mihiragula, leader of the White Huns, about A.D. 528
  (Smith, _EHI_, 318).]

Footnote 4.20a.5:

  [The sacred basil plant, _Ocymum sanctum_.]

Footnote 4.20a.6:

  A _khal_ is one of the heaps after the corn is thrashed out, about
  _five maunds_ [400 lbs.].

Footnote 4.20a.7:

  The _gadha-ghal_ is a punishment unknown in any but the Hindu code;
  the hieroglyphic import appears on the pillar, and must be seen to be

Footnote 4.20a.8:

  Revenue officers.

Footnote 4.20a.9:

  Literally ‘immortal,’ from _mara_, ‘death,’ and the privative prefix.

Footnote 4.20a.10:

  Schools or colleges of the Yatis.

Footnote 4.20a.11:

  Priests of the Jains.

Footnote 4.20a.12:

  _Kunchi_ and _mutthi_ are both a ‘handful’; the first is applied to
  grain in the stalk at harvest time; the other to such edibles in
  merchandise as sugar, raisins, etc., collectively termed _kirana_.

Footnote 4.20a.13:

  _Rikh_[_rishi_] is an ancient title applied to the highest class of
  priests; _Rikh-Rikhsha-Rikhiswara_, applied to royalty in old times.

Footnote 4.20a.14:

  _Adhan_ is the richest land, lying under the protection of the town
  walls; _mal_ or _maleti_ land is land not irrigated from wells.

Footnote 4.20a.15:

  In all a hundred and twenty bighas, or about forty acres.

Footnote 4.20a.16:

  [For the annual Jain retreat see p. 606, above.]

Footnote 4.20a.17:

  The chief of Delwara.

Footnote 4.20a.18:

  There are other grants later than this, which prove that all grants
  were renewed in every new reign. This grant also proves that no chief
  has the power to alienate without his sovereign’s sanction.

Footnote 4.20a.19:

  Epithet indicative of the greatness of the deity.

Footnote 4.20a.20:

  Here is another proof that the sovereign can only alienate the
  revenues (_hasil_); and though everything upon and about the grant,
  yet _not the soil_. The _nim-sim_ is almost as powerful an expression
  as the old grant to the Rawdons—

                          “From earth to heaven,
                          From heaven to hell,
                          For thee and thine
                          Therein to dwell.”

Footnote 4.20a.21:

  The high-priest.

Footnote 4.20a.22:

  All these are royalties, and the Rana was much blamed, even by his
  Vaishnava ministers, for sacrificing them even to Kanhaiya.

Footnote 4.20a.23:

  Followers of Vishnu, Krishna, or Kanhaiya, chiefly mercantile.

Footnote 4.20a.24:

  Many merchants, by the connivance of the conductors of the caravans of
  Nathji’s goods, contrived to smuggle their goods to Nathdwara, and to
  the disgrace of the high-priest or his underlings, this traffic was
  sold for their personal advantage. It was a delicate thing to search
  these caravans, or to prevent the loss to the State from the evasion
  of the duties. The Rana durst not interfere lest he might incur the
  penalty of his own anathemas. The Author’s influence with the
  high-priest put a stop to this.

Footnote 4.20a.25:

  This extent of sanctuary is an innovation of the present Rana’s, with
  many others equally unwise.

Footnote 4.20a.26:

  Lands for the queens or others of the immediate household.

Footnote 4.20a.27:

  Father of the present high-priest, Damodarji.

Footnote 4.20a.28:

  [Office, properly ‘a platform.’]

Footnote 4.20a.29:

  [Festivals of Krishna’s birthday, the water festival, the spring

Footnote 4.20a.30:

  Amongst the items of the Chartulary of Dunfermline is the tithe of the
  oil of the Greenland whale fisheries.

Footnote 4.20a.31:

  A handful of every basket of vegetables sold in the public markets.


                               CHAPTER 21

=The Importance of Mythology.=—It has been observed by that
philosophical traveller, Dr. Clarke, that, “by a proper attention to the
vestiges of ancient superstition, we are sometimes enabled to refer a
whole people to their original ancestors, with as much, if not more
certainty, than by observations made upon their language; because the
superstition is engrafted upon the stock, but the language is liable to
change.”[4.21.1] Impressed with the justness, as well as the originality
of the remark, I shall adopt it as my guide in the observations I
propose to make on the religious festivals and superstitions of Mewar.
However important may be the study of military, civil, and political
history, the science is incomplete without mythological history; and he
is little imbued with the spirit of philosophy who can perceive in the
fables of antiquity nothing but the extravagance of a fervid
imagination. Did no other consequence result from the study of mythology
than the fact that, in all ages and countries, man has desecrated his
reason, and voluntarily reduced himself below the level of the brutes
that perish, it must provoke inquiry into the cause of this degradation.
Such an investigation would develop, not only the source of history, the
handmaid of the arts and sciences, but the origin and application of the
latter, in a theogony typical of the seasons, their changes, and
products. Thus mythology may be considered the parent of all history.

=The Aboriginal Tribes.=—With regard, however, to the rude tribes who
still inhabit the mountains and fastnesses of India, and who may be
regarded as the aborigines of that country, the converse of this
doctrine is more probable. Not their language only, but [558] their
superstitions, differ from those of the Rajputs: though, from a desire
to rise above their natural condition, they have engrafted upon their
own the most popular mythologies of their civilized conquerors, who from
the north gradually spread themselves over the continent and peninsula,
even to the remote isles of the Indian Ocean. Of the primitive
inhabitants we may enumerate the Minas, the Meras, the Gonds, the Bhils,
the Sahariyas, the Savaras, the Abhiras, the Gujars, and those who
inhabit the forests of the Nerbudda, the Son, the Mahanadi, the
mountains of Sarguja, and the lesser Nagpur; many of whom are still but
little removed from savage life, and whose dialects are as various as
their manners. These are content to be called the ‘sons of the
earth,’[4.21.2] or ‘children of the forest,’[4.21.3] while their
conquerors, the Rajputs, arrogate celestial descent.[4.21.4] How soon
after the flood the Suryas, or sun-worshippers, entered India Proper,
must ever remain uncertain.[4.21.5] It is sufficient that they were
anterior in date to the Indus, or races tracing their descent from the
moon (_Ind_); as the migration of the latter from the central lands of
Indo-Scythia was antecedent to that of the Agnikulas, or
fire-worshippers, of the Snake race, claiming Takshak as their original
progenitor. The Suryas,[4.21.6] who migrated both to the East and West,
as population became redundant in these fertile regions, may be
considered the Celtic, as the Indu-Getae may be accounted the Gothic,
races of India.[4.21.7] To attempt to discriminate these different
races, and mark the shades which once separated them, after a system of
priestcraft has amalgamated the mass, and identified their
superstitions, would be fruitless; but the observer of ancient customs
may, with the imperfect guidance of peculiar rites, discover things, and
even names, totally incongruous with the Brahmanical system, and which
could never have originated within the Indus or Atak,—the Rubicon of
Gangetic antiquaries, who fear to look beyond that stream for the origin
of tribes. A residence amongst the Rajputs would lead to a disregard of
such boundaries, either to the moral or physical man, as the annals of
Mewar abundantly testify.

=Comparative Study of Festivals.=—Sir Wm. Jones remarks, “If the
festivals of the old Greeks, Persians, Romans [559], Egyptians, and
Goths could be arranged with exactness in the same form with the Indian,
there would be found a striking resemblance among them; and an attentive
comparison of them all might throw great light on the religion, and
perhaps on the history, of the primitive world.”

=Analogies to Rājput Customs in Northern Europe.=—In treating of the
festivals and superstitions of the Rajputs, wherever there may appear to
be a fair ground for supposing an analogy with those of other nations of
antiquity, I shall not hesitate to pursue it. The proper names of many
of the martial Rajputs would alone point out the necessity of seeking
for a solution of them out of the explored paths; and where Sanskrit
derivation cannot be assigned, as it happens in many instances, we are
not, therefore, warranted in the hasty conclusion that the names must
have been adopted since the conquests of Mahmud or Shihabu-d-din, events
of comparatively modern date. Let us at once admit the hypothesis of
Pinkerton,—the establishment of an original Indu-Getic or Indo-Scythic
empire, “extending from the Caspian to the Ganges”; or if this
conjecture be too extensive or too vague, let us fix the centre of this
Madhya-Bhumi in the fertile region of Sogdiana;[4.21.8] and from the
lights which modern history affords on the many migrations from this
nursery of mankind, even since the time of Muhammad, let us form an
opinion of those which have not been recorded, or have been conveyed by
the Hindus only in imperfect allegory; and with the aid of ancient
customs, obsolete words, and proper names, trace them to Indo-Scythic
colonies grafted on the parent stock. The Puranas themselves bear
testimony to the incorporation of Scythic tribes with the Hindus, and to
the continual irruptions of the Saka, the Pahlavas, the Yavanas,[4.21.9]
the Turushkas, names conspicuous amongst the races of Central Asia, and
recorded in the pages of the earliest Western historians. Even so early
as the period of Rama, when furious international wars were carried on
between the military and sacerdotal classes for supremacy, we have the
names of these tribes recorded as auxiliaries [560] to the priesthood;
who, while admitting them to fight under the banners of Siva, would not
scruple to stamp them with the seal of Hinduism. In this manner, beyond
a doubt, at a much later period than the events in the Ramayana, these
tribes from the North either forced themselves among, or were
incorporated with, ‘the races of the sun.’ When, therefore, we meet with
rites in Rajputana and in ancient Scandinavia, such as were practised
amongst the Getic nations on the Oxus, why should we hesitate to assign
the origin of both to this region of earliest civilization? When we see
the ancient Asii, and the Iutae, or Jutes, taking omens from the white
steed of Thor, shut up in the temple at Upsala; and in like manner, the
Rajput of past days offering the same animal in sacrifice to the sun,
and his modern descendant taking the omen from his neigh, why are we to
refuse our assent to the common origin of the superstition practised by
the Getae of the Oxus? Again, when we find the ‘homage to the sword’
performed by all the Getic races of antiquity in Dacia, on the Baltic,
as well as by the modern Rajput, shall we draw no conclusion from this
testimony of the father of history, who declares that such rites were
practised on the Jaxartes in the very dawn of knowledge?[4.21.10]
Moreover, why hesitate to give Eastern etymologies for Eastern rites,
though found on the Baltic? The antiquary of the North (Mallet) may thus
be assisted to the etymon of ‘Tir-sing,’ the enchanted sword of
Angantýr, in _tir_, ‘water,’ and _singh_, ‘a lion’; _i.e._ in water or
spirit like a lion; for even _pani_, the common epithet for water, is
applied metaphorically to ‘spirit.’[4.21.11]

It would be less difficult to find Sanskrit derivations for many of the
proper names in the Edda, than to give a Sanskrit analysis of many
common amongst the Rajputs, which we must trace to an Indo-Scythic
root:[4.21.12] such as Eyvorsél, Udila, Attitai, Pujun, Hamira,[4.21.13]
and numerous other proper names of warriors. Of tribes: the Kathi,
Rajpali, Mohila, Sariaspah, Aswaria (_qu._ Assyrian?), Banaphar, Kamari,
Silara, Dahima, etc. Of mountains: Drinodhar, Arbuda, Aravalli,
Aravindha (the root _ara_, or mountain, being Scythic, and the expletive
adjunct Sanskrit), ‘the hill of Budha,’ ‘of strength,’ ‘of limit.’ To
all such as cannot be [561] resolved into the cognate language of India,
what origin can we assign but Scythic?[4.21.14]

=Festivals in Mewār. Naurātri Festival.=—In a memoir prepared for me by
a well-informed public officer in the Rana’s court, on the chief
festivals celebrated in Mewar, he commenced with those following the
autumnal equinox, in the month Asoj or Aswini, opening with the
Nauratri, sacred to the god of war. Their fasts are in general regulated
by the moon; although the most remarkable are solar, especially those of
the equinoxes and solstices, and the Sankrantis, or days on which the
sun enters a new sign. The Hindu solar year anciently commenced on the
winter solstice, in the month Pausha, and was emphatically called ‘the
morning of the gods’; also Sivaratri, or night of Siva, analogous, as
has been before remarked, to the ‘mother night,’ which ushered in the
new year of the Scandinavian Asi, and other nations of Asiatic origin
dwelling in the north.

=The Repose of Vishnu.=—They term the summer solstice in the month of
Asarh, ‘the night of the gods,’ because Vishnu (as the sun) reposes
during the four rainy months on his serpent couch. The lunar year of 360
days was more ancient than the solar, and commenced with the month of
Asoj or Aswini: “the moon being at the full when that name was imposed
on the first lunar station of the Hindu ecliptic.”[4.21.15]

According to another authority, the festivals commenced on Amavas, or
the Ides of Chait, near which the vernal equinox falls, the opening of
the modern solar year; when, in like manner as at the commencement of
the lunar year in Asoj, they [562] dedicate the first nine days of Chait
(also called Nauratri) to Iswara and his consort Isani.

Having thus specified both modes of reckoning for the opening of the
solar and lunar years, I shall not commence the abstract of the
festivals of Mewar with either, but follow the more ancient division of
time, when the year closed with the winter solstice in the month of Pus,
consequently opening the new year with Magh. By this arrangement, we
shall commence with the spring festivals, and let the days dedicated to
mirth and gaiety follow each other; preferring the natural to the
astrological year, which will enable us to preserve the analogy with the
northern nations of Europe, who also reckoned from the winter solstice.
The Hindu divides the year into six seasons, each of two months; namely,
Vasanta, Grishma, Varsha, Sarad, Sisira, Sita; or spring, summer, rainy,
sultry, dewy, and cold.

It is not, however, my intention to detail all the fasts and festivals
which the Rajput of Mewar holds in common with the Hindu nation, but
chiefly those restricted to that State, or such as are celebrated with
local peculiarity, or striking analogies to those of Egypt, Greece, or
Scandinavia. The goddess who presides over mirth and idleness preferred
holding her court amidst the ruins of Udaipur to searching elsewhere for
a dwelling. This determination to be happy amidst calamity, individual
and national, has made the court proverbial in Rajwara, in the adage,
‘_sat bara, aur nau teohara_,’ _i.e._ nine holidays out of seven days.
Although many of these festivals are common to India, and their
maintenance is enjoined by religion, yet not only the prolongation and
repetition of some, but the entire institution of others, as well as the
peculiar splendour of their solemnization, originate with the prince;
proving how much individual example may influence the manners of a

=Spring Festival, Vasant Panchami.=—By the arrangement we have adopted,
the lovely Vasanti, goddess of the spring, will usher in the festivals
of Mewar. In 1819 her rites were celebrated in the kalends of January,
and even then, on the verge of the tropic, her birth was premature.

The opening of the spring being on the 5th of the month Magha, is thence
called the Vasant panchami, which in 1819 fell on the 30th of January;
consequently the first of Pus (the antecedent month), the beginning of
the old Hindu [563] year, or ‘the morning of the gods,’ fell on the 25th
of December. The Vasant continues forty days after the panchami, or
initiative fifth, during which the utmost license prevails in action and
in speech; the lower classes regale even to intoxication on every kind
of stimulating confection and spirituous beverage, and the most
respectable individuals, who would at other times be shocked to utter an
indelicate allusion, roam about with the groups of bacchanals, reciting
stanzas of the warmest description in praise of the powers of nature, as
did the conscript fathers of Rome during the Saturnalia. In this season,
when the barriers of rank are thrown down, and the spirit of democracy
is let loose, though never abused, even the wild Bhil, or savage Mer,
will leave his forest or mountain shade to mingle in the revelries of
the capital; and decorating his ebon hair or tattered turban with a
garland of jessamine, will join the clamorous parties which perambulate
the streets of the capital. These orgies are, however, reserved for the
conclusion of the forty days sacred to the goddess of nature.

=Bhān Saptami Festival.=—Two days following the initiative fifth is the
Bhan saptami or ‘seventh [day] of the sun,’ also called ‘the birth of
the sun,’ with various other metaphorical denominations.[4.21.16] On
this day there is a grand procession of the Rana, his chiefs and
vassals, to the Chaugan, where the sun is worshipped. At the Jaipur
court, whose princes claim descent from Kusa, the second son of Rama,
the Bhan saptami is peculiarly sacred. The chariot of the sun, drawn by
eight horses, is taken from the temple dedicated to that orb, and moved
in procession: a ceremony otherwise never observed but on the
inauguration of a new prince.

=Sun Worship.=—In the mythology of the Rajputs, of which we have a
better idea from their heroic poetry than from the legends of the
Brahmans, the sun-god is the deity they are most anxious to propitiate;
and in his honour they fearlessly expend their blood in battle, from the
hope of being received into his mansion. Their highest heaven is
accordingly the Bhanuthan or Bhanuloka, the ‘region of the sun’: and
like the Indu-Scythic Getae, the Rajput warrior of the early ages
sacrificed the horse in his honour,[4.21.17] and dedicated to him the
first day of the week, namely, Adityawar, contracted to Itwar, also
called Thawara[4.21.18] [564].

The more we attend to the warlike mythology of the north, the more
apparent is its analogy with that of the Rajputs, and the stronger
ground is there for assuming that both races inherited their creed from
the common land of the Yuti of the Jaxartes. What is a more proper
etymon for Scandinavian, the abode of the warriors who destroyed the
Roman power, than Skanda, the Mars or Kumara of the Rajputs? perhaps the
origin of the Cimbri, derived by Mallet from koempfer, ‘to fight.’

Thor, in the eleventh fable of the Edda, is denominated
Asa-Thor,[4.21.19] the ‘lord Thor,’ called the Celtic Mars by the
Romans. The chariot of Thor is ignobly yoked compared with the car of
Surya; but in the substitution of the he-goats for the seven-headed
horse Saptasva we have but the change of an adjunct depending on clime,
when the Yuti migrated from the plains of Scythia, of which the horse is
a native, to Yutland, of whose mountains the goat was an inhabitant
prior to any of the race of Asi. The northern warrior makes the palace
of the sun-god Thor the most splendid of the celestial abodes, “in which
are five hundred and forty halls”: vying with the Suryamandala, the
supreme heaven of the Rajput. Whence such notions of the Aswa races of
the Ganges, and the Asi of Scandinavia, but from the Scythic Saka, who
adored the solar divinity under the name of ‘Gaeto-Syrus,’[4.21.20] the
Surya of the Sachha Rajput; and as, according to the commentator on the
Edda, “the ancient people of the north pronounced the _th_ as the
English now do _ss_,” the sun-god _Thor_ becomes _Sor_, and is
identified still more with Surya whose worship no doubt gave the name to
that extensive portion of Asia called Συρία, as it did to the small
peninsula of the Sauras, still peopled by tribes of Scythic origin. The
Sol of the Romans has probably the same Celto-Etrurian origin; with
those tribes the sun was the great object of adoration, and their grand
festival, the winter solstice, was called Yule, Hiul, Houl, “which even
at this day signifies the Sun, in the language of Bas-Bretagne and
Cornwall.”[4.21.21] On the conversion of the descendants of these
Scythic Yeuts, who, according to [565] Herodotus, sacrificed the horse
(_Hi_) to the sun (_El_), the name of the Pagan jubilee of the solstice
was transferred to the day of Christ’s nativity, which is thus still
held in remembrance by their descendants of the north.[4.21.22]

=Sun Worship at Udaipur.=—At Udaipur the sun has universal precedence;
his portal (_Suryapol_) is the chief entrance to the city; his name
gives dignity to the chief apartment or hall (_Suryamahall_) of the
palace; and from the balcony of the sun (_Suryagokhra_) the descendant
of Rama shows himself in the dark monsoon as the sun’s representative. A
huge painted sun of gypsum in high relief, with gilded rays, adorns the
hall of audience, and in front of it is the throne. As already
mentioned, the sacred standard bears his image,[4.21.23] as does that
Scythic part of the regalia called the _changi_, a disc of black felt or
ostrich feathers, with a plate of gold to represent the sun in its
centre, borne upon a pole. The royal parasol is termed _kirania_, in
allusion to its shape, like a ray (_kiran_) of the orb. The last day but
one of the month of Magha is called Sivaratri (night of Siva), and is
held peculiarly sacred by the Rana, who is styled the Regent of Siva. It
is a rigid fast, and the night is passed in vigils, and rites to the
phallic representative of Siva.

=The Spring Hunt.=—The merry month of Phalgun is ushered in with the
Aheria, or spring-hunt.[4.21.24] The preceding day the Rana distributes
to all his chiefs and servants either a dress of green, or some portion
thereof, in which all appear habited on the morrow, whenever the
astrologer has fixed the hour for sallying forth to slay the boar to
Gauri, the Ceres of the Rajputs: the Aheria is therefore called the
Mahurat ka shikar, or the chase fixed astrologically. As their success
on this occasion is ominous of future good, no means are neglected to
secure it, either by scouts previously discovering the lair, or the
desperate efforts of the hunters to slay the boar when roused. With the
sovereign and his sons all the chiefs sally forth, each on his best
steed, and all animated by the desire to surpass each other in acts of
prowess and dexterity. It is very rare that in some one of the passes or
recesses of the valley the hog is not found; the spot is then surrounded
by the [566] hunters, whose vociferations soon start the
_dukkara_,[4.21.25] and frequently a drove of hogs. Then each cavalier
impels his steed, and with lance or sword, regardless of rock, ravine,
or tree, presses on the bristly foe, whose knowledge of the country is
of no avail when thus circumvented, and the ground soon reeks with gore,
in which not unfrequently is mixed that of horse or rider. On the last
occasion there occurred fewer casualties than usual; though the
Chondawat Hamira, whom we nicknamed the ‘Red Riever,’ had his leg
broken, and the second son of Sheodan Singh, a near relation of the
Rana, had his neighbour’s lance driven through his arm. The young chief
of Salumbar was amongst the distinguished of this day’s sport. It would
appal even an English fox-hunter to see the Rajputs driving their steeds
at full speed, bounding like the antelope over every barrier—the thick
jungle covert, or rocky steep bare of soil or vegetation,—with their
lances balanced in the air, or leaning on the saddle-bow slashing at the

The royal kitchen moves out on this occasion, and in some chosen spot
the repast is prepared, of which all partake, for the hog is the
favourite food of the Rajput, as it was of the heroes of Scandinavia.
Nor is the _munawwar piyala_, or invitation cup, forgotten; and having
feasted, and thrice slain their bristly antagonist, they return to the
capital, where fame had already spread their exploits—the deeds done by
the _barchhi_ (lance) of Padma,[4.21.26] or the _khanda_ (sword) blow of
Hamira,[4.21.27] which lopped the head of the foe of Gauri. Even this
martial amusement, the Aheria, has a religious origin. The boar is the
enemy of Gauri of the Rajputs; it was so held of Isis by the Egyptians,
of Ceres by the Greeks, of Freya by the north-man, whose favourite food
was the hog: and of such importance was it deemed by the Franks, that
the second chapter of the Salic law is entirely penal with regard to the
stealers of swine. The heroes of the Edda, even in Valhalla, feed on the
fat of the wild boar Saehrimner, while “the illustrious father of armies
fattens his wolves Geri and Freki, and takes no other nourishment
himself than the interrupted quaffing of wine”: quite the picture of
Har, the Rajput god of war, and his sons the Bhairavas, Krodha, and
Kala, metaphorically called the ‘sons of slaughter.’ We need hardly
repeat that the cup of the Scandinavian god of war, like that of the
Rajputs, is the human skull (_khopra_) [567].[4.21.28]

=The Phāg or Holi Festival.=—As Phalgun advances, the bacchanalian mirth
increases; groups are continually patrolling the streets, throwing a
crimson powder at each other, or ejecting a solution of it from
syringes, so that the garments and visages of all are one mass of
crimson. On the 8th, emphatically called the Phag, the Rana joins the
queens and their attendants in the palace, when all restraint is removed
and mirth is unlimited. But the most brilliant sight is the playing of
the Holi on horseback, on the terrace in front of the palace. Each chief
who chooses to join has a plentiful supply of missiles, formed of thin
plates of mica or talc, enclosing this crimson powder, called _abira_,
which with the most graceful and dextrous horsemanship they dart at each
other, pursuing, caprioling, and jesting. This part of it much resembles
the Saturnalia of Rome of this day, when similar missiles are scattered
at the Carnivâle. The last day or Punon ends the Holi, when the Nakkaras
from the Tripolia summon all the chiefs with their retinues to attend
their prince, and accompany him in procession to the Chaugan, their
Champ de Mars. In the centre of this is a long _sala_ or hall, the
ascent to which is by a flight of steps: the roof is supported by square
columns without any walls, so that the court is entirely open. Here,
surrounded by his chiefs, the Rana passes an hour, listening to the
songs in praise of Holika, while a scurrilous _kavya_ or couplet from
some wag in the crowd reminds him, that exalted rank is no protection
against the license of the spring Saturnalia; though ‘the Diwan of
Eklinga’ has not to reproach himself with a failure of obedience to the
rites of the goddess, having fulfilled the command ‘to multiply,’ more
than any individual in his kingdom.[4.21.29] While the Rana and his
chiefs are thus amused above, the buffoons and itinerant groups mix with
the cavalcade, throw powder in their eyes, or deluge their garments with
the crimson solution. To resent it would only expose the sensitive party
to be laughed at, and draw upon him a host of these bacchanals: so that
no alternative exists between keeping entirely aloof or mixing in the
fray [568].[4.21.30]

On the last day, the Rana feasts his chiefs, and the camp breaks up
with the distribution of _khanda nariyal_, or swords and coco-nuts, to
the chiefs and all “whom the king delighteth to honour.” These
_khandas_ are but ‘of lath,’ in shape like the Andrea Ferrara, or long
cut-and-thrust, the favourite weapon of the Rajput. They are painted
in various ways, like Harlequin’s sword, and meant as a burlesque, in
unison with the character of the day, when war is banished, and the
multiplication,[4.21.31] not the destruction, of man is the behest of
the goddess who rules the spring. At nightfall, the forty days
conclude with ‘the burning of the Holi,’ when they light large fires,
into which various substances, as well as the crimson _abira_, are
thrown, and around which groups of children are dancing and screaming
in the streets like so many infernals. Until three hours after sunrise
of the new month of Chait, these orgies are continued with increased
vigour, when the natives bathe, change their garments, worship, and
return to the rank of sober citizens; and princes and chiefs receive
gifts from their domestics.[4.21.32]

=Chait.=—The first of this month is the Samvatsara (vulg. Chamchari), or
anniversary of the death of the Rana’s father, to whose memory solemn
rites are performed both in the palace and at Ara, the royal cemetery,
metaphorically termed Mahasati, or place of ‘great faith.’ Thither the
Rana repairs, and offers oblations to the _manes_ of his father; and
after purifying in the Gangabheva, a rivulet which flows through the
middle of ‘the abode of silence,’ he returns to the palace.

On the 3rd, the whole of the royal insignia proceeds to Bedla, the
residence of the Chauhan chief (one of the Sixteen), within the valley
of the capital, in order to convey the Rao to court. The Rana advances
to the Ganesa Deori[4.21.33] to receive him; when, after salutation, the
sovereign and his chief return to the great hall of assembly, hand in
hand, but that of the Chauhan above or upon his sovereign’s. In this
ceremony we have another singular memorial of the glorious days of
Mewar, when almost every chieftain established by deeds of devotion a
right to the eternal gratitude of their princes; the decay of whose
[569] power but serves to hallow such reminiscences. It is in these
little acts of courteous condescension, deviations from the formal
routine of reception, that we recognize the traces of Rajput history;
for inquiry into these customs will reveal the incident which gave birth
to each, and curiosity will be amply repaid, in a lesson at once of
political and moral import. For my own part, I never heard the
kettledrum of my friend Raj Kalyan strike at the sacred barrier, the
Tripolia, without recalling the glorious memory of his ancestor at the
Thermopylae of Mewar;[4.21.34] nor looked on the autograph lance, the
symbol of the Chondawats, without recognizing the fidelity of the
founder of the clan;[4.21.35] nor observed the honours paid to the
Chauhans of Bedla and Kotharia, without the silent tribute of applause
to the manes of their sires.

=Sītala’s Festival.=—Chait badi sat, or ‘7th of [the dark fortnight]
Chait,’ is in honour of the goddess Sitala, the protectress of children:
all the matrons of the city proceed with their offerings to the shrine
of the goddess, placed upon the very pinnacle of an isolated hill in the
valley. In every point of view, this divinity is the twin-sister of the
Mater Montana,[4.21.36] the guardian of infants amongst the Romans, the
Grecian or Phrygian Cybele.

=Birthday of the Rana.=—This is also the Rana’s birthday,[4.21.37] on
which occasion all classes flock with gifts and good wishes that “the
king may live for ever”; but it is in the penetralia of the Rawala,
where the profane eye enters not, that the greatest festivities of this
day are kept.

=New Year’s Day. The Festival of Flowers.=—Chait Sudi 1st (15th of the
month) is the opening of the luni-solar year of Vikramaditya.
Ceremonies, which more especially appertain to the Nauratri of Asoj, are
performed on this day; and the sword is worshipped in the palace. But
such rites are subordinate to those of the fair divinity, who still
rules over this the smiling portion of the year. Vasanti has ripened
into the fragrant Flora, and all the fair of the capital, as well as the
other sex, repair to the gardens and groves, where parties assemble,
regale, and swing, adorned with chaplets of roses, jessamine, or
oleander, when the Naulakha gardens may vie with the Tivoli of Paris.
They return in the evening to the city.

=The Festival of Flowers.=—The Rajput Floralia ushers in the rites of
the beneficent Gauri, which continue nine days, the number sacred to the
creative [570] power. These vie with the Cerealia of Rome, or the more
ancient rites of the goddess of the Nile: I shall therefore devote some
space to a particular account of them.[4.21.38]

=Ganggor Festival.=—Among the many remarkable festivals of Rajasthan,
kept with peculiar brilliancy at Udaipur, is that in honour of Gauri, or
Isani, the goddess of abundance, the Isis of Egypt, the Ceres of Greece.
Like the Rajput Saturnalia, which it follows, it belongs to the vernal
equinox, when nature in these regions proximate to the tropic is in the
full expanse of her charms, and the matronly Gauri casts her golden
mantle over the beauties of the verdant Vasanti.[4.21.39] Then the
fruits exhibit their promise to the eye; the koil fills the ear with
melody; the air is impregnated with aroma, and the crimson poppy
contrasts with the spikes of golden grain, to form a wreath for the
beneficent Gauri.

Gauri is one of the names of Isa or Parvati, wife of the greatest of the
gods, Mahadeva or Iswara, who is conjoined with her in these rites,
which almost exclusively appertain to the women. The meaning of Gauri is
‘yellow,’ emblematic of the ripened harvest, when the votaries of the
goddess adore her effigies, which are those of a matron painted the
colour of ripe corn; and though her image is represented with only two
hands, in one of which she holds the lotos, which the Egyptians regarded
as emblematic of reproduction, yet not unfrequently they equip her with
the warlike conch, the discus, and the club, to denote that the goddess,
whose gifts sustain life, is likewise accessary to the loss of it:
uniting, as Gauri and Kali, the characters of life and death, like the
Isis and Cybele of the Egyptians. But here she is only seen as
Annapurna, the benefactress of mankind. The rites commence when the sun
enters Aries (the opening of the Hindu year), by a deputation to a spot
beyond the city, “to bring earth for the image of Gauri.”[4.21.40] When
this is formed, a smaller one of Iswara is made, and they are placed
together; a small trench is then excavated, in which barley is sown; the
ground is irrigated and artificial heat supplied till the grain
germinates, when the females join hands and dance round it, invoking the
blessings of Gauri on their husbands.[4.21.41] The young corn is then
taken up, distributed, and presented by the females to the men, who wear
it in their turbans. Every wealthy family has its image, or at least
every purwa or subdivision of the city. These and other [571] rites
known only to the initiated having been performed for several days
within doors, they decorate the images, and prepare to carry them in
procession to the lake. During these days of preparation, nothing is
talked of but Gauri’s departure from the palace; whether she will be as
sumptuously apparelled as in the year gone by; whether an additional
boat will be launched on the occasion; though not a few forget the
goddess altogether in the recollection of the gazelle eyes
(_mrig-nayani_) and serpentine locks (_nagini-zulf_)[4.21.42] of the
beauteous handmaids who are selected to attend her. At length the hour
arrives, the martial nakkaras give the signal “to the cannonier
without,” and speculation is at rest when the guns on the summit of the
castle of Eklinggarh announce that Gauri has commenced her excursion to
the lake.

=The Bathing of the Goddess.=—The cavalcade assembles on the magnificent
terrace, and the Rana, surrounded by his nobles, leads the way to the
boats, of a form as primitive as that which conveyed the Argonauts to
Colchis. The scenery is admirably adapted for these fêtes, the ascent
being gradual from the margin of the lake, which here forms a fine bay,
and gently rising to the crest of the ridge on which the palace and
dwellings of the chiefs are built. Every turret and balcony is crowded
with spectators, from the palace to the water’s edge; and the ample
flight of marble steps which intervene from the Tripolia, or triple
portal, to the boats, is a dense mass of females in variegated robes,
whose scarfs but half conceal their ebon tresses adorned with the rose
and the jessamine. A more imposing or more exhilarating sight cannot be
imagined than the entire population of a city thus assembled for the
purpose of rejoicing; the countenance of every individual, from the
prince to the peasant, dressed in smiles. Carry the eye to heaven, and
it rests on ‘a sky without a cloud’: below is a magnificent lake, the
even surface of the deep blue waters broken only by palaces of marble,
whose arched piazzas are seen through the foliage of orange groves,
plantain, and tamarind; while the vision is bounded by noble mountains,
their peaks towering over each other, and composing an immense
amphitheatre. Here the deformity of vice intrudes not; no object is
degraded by inebriation: no tumultuous disorder or deafening clamour,
but all await patiently, with eyes directed to the Tripolia, the
appearance of Gauri. At length the procession is seen winding down the
steep, and in the midst [572], borne on a _pat_,[4.21.43] or throne,
gorgeously arrayed in yellow robes, and blazing with ‘barbaric pearl and
gold,’ the goddess appears; on either side the two beauties wave the
silver _chamara_ over her head, while the more favoured damsels act as
harbingers, preceding her with wands of silver: the whole chanting
hymns. On her approach, the Rana, his chiefs and ministers rise and
remain standing till the goddess is seated on her throne close to the
water’s edge, when all bow, and the prince and court take their seats in
the boats. The females then form a circle around the goddess, unite
hands, and with a measured step and various graceful inclinations of the
body, keeping time by beating the palms at particular cadences, move
round the image singing hymns, some in honour of the goddess of
abundance, others on love and chivalry; and embodying little episodes of
national achievements, occasionally sprinkled with _double entendre_,
which excites a smile and significant nod from the chiefs, and an
inclination of the head of the fair choristers. The festival being
entirely female, not a single male mixed in the immense groups, and even
Iswara himself, the husband of Gauri, attracts no attention, as appears
from his ascetic or mendicant form begging his dole from the bounteous
and universal mother. It is taken for granted that the goddess is
occupied in bathing all the time she remains, and ancient tradition says
death was the penalty of any male intruding on these solemnities; but
the present prince deems them so fitted for amusement, that he has even
instituted a second Ganggor. Some hours are thus consumed, while easy
and good-humoured conversation is carried on. At length, the ablutions
over, the goddess is taken up, and conveyed to the palace with the same
forms and state. The Rana and his chiefs then unmoor their boats, and
are rowed round the margin of the lake, to visit in succession the other
images of the goddess, around which female groups are chanting and
worshipping, as already described, with which ceremonies the evening
closes, when the whole terminates with a grand display of fireworks, the
finale of each of the three days dedicated to Gauri.

Considerable resemblance is to be discerned between this festival of
Gauri and that in honour of the Egyptian Diana[4.21.44] at Bubastis, and
Isis at Busiris, within the [573] Delta of the Nile, of which Herodotus
says: “They who celebrate those of Diana embark in vessels; the women
strike their tabors, the men their flutes; the rest of both sexes clap
their hands, and join in chorus. Whatever city they approach, the
vessels are brought on shore; the women use ungracious language, dance,
and indelicately throw about their garments.”[4.21.45] Wherever the
rites of Isis prevailed, we find the boat introduced as an essential
emblem in her worship, whether in the heart of Rajasthan, on the banks
of the Nile, or in the woods of Germany. Bryant[4.21.46] furnishes an
interesting account from Diodorus and Curtius, illustrated by drawings
from Pocock, from the temple of Luxor, near Carnac, in the Thebaid, of
‘the ship of Isis,’ carrying an ark; and from a male figure therein,
this learned person thinks it bears a mysterious allusion to the deluge.
I am inclined to deem the personage in the ark Osiris, husband of Isis,
the type of the sun arrived in the sign of Aries (of which the ram’s
heads ornamenting both the prow and stem of the vessel are typical), the
harbinger of the annual fertilizing inundation of the Nile: evincing
identity of origin as an equinoctial festival with that of Gauri (Isis)
of the Indu-Scythic races of Rajasthan.

The German Suevi adored Isis, and also introduced a ship in her worship,
for which Tacitus[4.21.47] is at a loss to account, and with his usual
candour says he has no materials whence to investigate the origin of a
worship denoting the foreign origin of the tribe. This Isis of the Suevi
was evidently a form of Ertha, the chief divinity of all the Saxon
races, who, with her consort Teutates or Hesus[4.21.48] (Mercury), were
the chief deities of both the Celtic and early Gothic races: the [574]
Budha and Ila of the Rajputs; in short, the earth,[4.21.49] the prolific
mother, the Isis of Egypt, the Ceres of Greece, the Annapurna (giver of
food) of the Rajputs. On some ancient temples dedicated to this Hindu
Ceres we have sculptured on the frieze and pedestal of the columns the
emblem of abundance, termed the _kamakumbha_, or vessel of desire, a
vase of elegant form, from which branches of the palm are gracefully
pendent. Herodotus says that similar water-vessels, filled with wheat
and barley, were carried in the festival of Isis; and all who have
attended to Egyptian antiquities are aware that the god Canopus is
depicted under the form of a water-jar, or Nilometer, whose covering
bears the head of Osiris.

=The Agastya Festival.=—To render the analogy perfect between the
vessels emblematic of the Isis of the Nile and the Ganges, there is a
festival sacred to the sage Agastya, who presides over the star Canopus,
when the sun enters Virgo (_Kanya_). The _kamakumbha_ is then
personified under the epithet _kumbhayoni_, and the votary is instructed
to pour water into a sea-shell, in which having placed white flowers and
unground rice, turning his face to the south, he offers it with this
incantation: “Hail, Kumbhayoni, born in the sight of Mitra and Varuna
(the sun and water divinities), bright as the blossom of the _kusa_
(grass), who sprung from Agni (fire) and the Maruts.” By the prefix of
Ganga (the river) to Gauri, we see that the Ganggor festival is
essentially sacred to a river-goddess, affording additional proof of the
common origin of the rites of the Isis of Egypt and India.

The Egyptians, according to Plutarch, considered the Nile as flowing
from Osiris, in like manner as the Hindu poet describes the fair Ganga
flowing from the head of Iswara, which Sir W. Jones thus classically
paints in his hymn to Ganga:

 Above the reach of mortal ken,
 On blest Coilasa’s top, where every stem
 Glowed with a vegetable gem,
 Mahesa stood, the dread and joy of men;
 While Parvati, to gain a boon,
 Fixed on his locks a beamy moon,
 And hid his frontal eye in jocund play,
 With reluctant sweet delay;
 All nature straight was locked in dim eclipse,
 Till Brahmins pure, with hallowed lips
 And warbled prayers, restored the day,
 When Ganga from his brow, with heavenly fingers prest,
 Sprang radiant, and descending, graced the caverns of the west [575].


  _To face page 670._

=The Goddess Ganga.=—Ganga, the river-goddess, like the Nile, is the
type of fertility, and like that celebrated stream, has her source
amidst the eternal glaciers of Chandragiri or Somagiri (the mountains of
the moon); the higher peaks of the gigantic Himalaya, where Parvati is
represented as ornamenting the tiara of Iswara “with a beamy moon.” In
this metaphor, and in his title of Somanatha (lord of the moon), we
again have evidence of Iswara, or Siva, after representing the sun,
having the satellite moon as his ornament.[4.21.50] His Olympus,
Kailasa, is studded with that majestic pine, the cedar; thence he is
called Kedarnath, ‘lord of the cedar-trees.’[4.21.51] The mysteries of
Osiris and those of Eleusis[4.21.52] were of the same character,
commemorative of the first germ of civilization, the culture of the
earth, under a variety of names, Ertha, Isis, Diana, Ceres, Ila. It is a
curious fact that in the terra-cotta images of Isis, frequently
excavated about her temple at Paestum,[4.21.53] she holds in her right
hand an exact representation of the Hindu lingam and yoni combined; and
on the Indian expedition to Egypt, our Hindu soldiers deemed themselves
amongst the altars of their own god Iswara (Osiris), from the abundance
of his emblematic representatives.

=The Aghori Ascetics.=—In the festival of Ganggor, as before mentioned,
Iswara yields to his consort Gauri, and occupies an unimportant position
near her at the water’s edge, meanly clad, smoking intoxicating herbs,
and, whether by accident or design, holding the stalk of an onion in
full blossom as a mace or club—a plant regarded by some of the Egyptians
with veneration, and held by the Hindus generally in detestation: and
why they should on such an occasion thus degrade Iswara, I know not.
Onion-juice is reluctantly taken when prescribed medicinally, as a
powerful stimulant, by those who would reject spirituous liquors; and
there are classes, as the Aghori, that worship Iswara in his most
degraded form, who will not only devour raw flesh, but that of man; and
to whom it is a matter of perfect indifference whether the victim was
slaughtered or died a natural death. For the honour of humanity, such
monsters are few in number; but that they practise [576] these deeds I
can testify, from a personal visit to their haunts, where I saw the cave
of one of these Troglodyte monsters, in which by his own command he was
inhumed; and which will remain closed, until curiosity and incredulity
greater than mine may disturb the bones of the Aghori of Abu.

The ὠμοφαγία, or eating raw flesh with the blood, was a part of the
secret mysteries of Osiris, in commemoration of the happy change in the
condition of mankind from savage to civilized life, and intended to
deter by disgust the return thereto.[4.21.54]

The Buddhists pursued this idea to excess; and in honour of Adiswara,
the First, who from his abode of Meru taught them the arts of
agriculture, they altogether abandoned that type of savage life, the
eating of the flesh of animals,[4.21.55] and confined themselves to the
fruits of the earth. With these sectarian anti-idolaters, who are almost
all of Rajput descent, the beneficent Lakshmi, Sri, or Gauri, is an
object of sincere devotion.

=Affinities of Hindu to other Mythologies.=—But we must close this
digression; for such is the affinity between the mythology of India,
Greece, and Egypt, that a bare recapitulation of the numerous surnames
of the Hindu goddess of abundance would lead us beyond reasonable
limits; all are forms of Parvati or Durga Mata, the Mater Montana of
Greece and Rome, an epithet of Cybele or Vesta (according to Diodorus),
as the guardian goddess of children, one of the characters of the Rajput
‘Mother of the Mount,’ whose shrine crowns many a pinnacle in Mewar; and
who, with the prolific Gauri, is amongst the amiable forms of the
universal mother, whose functions are more varied and extensive than her
sisters of Egypt and of Greece. Like the Ephesian Diana, Durga wears the
crescent on her head. She is also ‘the turreted Cybele,’ the guardian
goddess of all places of strength (_durga_),[4.21.56] and like her she
is drawn or carried by the lion. As Mata Janavi, ‘the Mother of Births,’
she is Juno Lucina: as Padma, ‘whose throne is the lotos,’ she is the
fair Isis of the Nile: as Tripura,[4.21.57] ‘governing the three
worlds,’ and Atmadevi, ‘the Goddess of Souls,’ she is the Hecate
Triformis of the Greeks. In short, her power is manifested under every
form from the birth, and all the [577] intermediate stages until death;
whether Janavi, Gauri, or the terrific Kali, the Proserpine or
Kalligeneia of the West.

Whoever desires to witness one of the most imposing and pleasing of
Hindu festivals, let him repair to Udaipur, and behold the rites of the
lotus-queen Padma, the Gauri of Rajasthan.

Chait (Sudi) 8th, which, being after the Ides, is the 23rd of the month,
is sacred to Devi, the goddess of every tribe; she is called
Asokashtami, and being the ninth night (_nauratri_) from the opening of
their Floralia, they perform the _homa_, or sacrifice of fire. On this
day a grand procession takes place to the Chaugan, and every Rajput
worships his tutelary divinity.

=The Birth of Rāma.=—Chait (Sudi) 9th is the anniversary of Rama, the
grand beacon of the solar race, kept with great rejoicings at Udaipur.
Horses and elephants are worshipped, and all the implements of war. A
procession takes place to the Chaugan, and the succeeding day, called
the Dasahra or tenth, is celebrated in Asoj.

=The Festival of Kamadeva.=—The last days of spring are dedicated to
Kamadeva, the god of love. The scorching winds of the hot season are
already beginning to blow, when Flora droops her head, and “the god of
love turns anchorite”; yet the rose continues to blossom, and affords
the most fragrant chaplets for the Rajputnis, amidst all the heats of
summer. Of this the queen of flowers, the jessamine (_chameli_), white
and yellow, the mogra,[4.21.58] the champaka, that flourish in extreme
heat, the ladies form garlands, which they twine in their dark hair,
weave into bracelets, or wear as pendent collars. There is no city in
the East where the adorations of the sex to Kamadeva are more fervent
than in ‘the city of the rising sun’ (Udayapura). On the 13th and 14th
of Chait they sing hymns handed down by the sacred bards:

“Hail, god of the flowery bow:[4.21.59] hail, warrior with a fish on thy
banner! hail, powerful divinity, who causeth the firmness of the sage to
forsake him!”

“Glory to Madana, to Kama,[4.21.60] the god of gods; to Him by whom
Brahma [578], Vishnu, Siva, and Indra are filled with emotions of
rapture!”—_Bhavishya Purana._[4.21.61]

=Festivals in the month Baisākh: April-May.=—There is but one festival
in this month of any note, when the grand procession denominated the
‘Nakkara ki aswari’ (from the equestrians being summoned, as already
described, by the grand kettledrums from the Tripolia), takes place; and
this is against the canons of the Hindu church, being instituted by the
present Rana in S. 1847, a memorable year in the calendar. It was in
this year, on the 2nd of Baisakh, that he commanded a repetition of the
rites of Gauri, by the name of the Little Ganggor; but this act of
impiety was marked by a sudden rise of the waters of the Pichola, the
bursting of the huge embankment, and the inundation of the lake’s banks,
to the destruction of one-third of the capital: life, property,
mansions, trees, all were swept away in the tremendous rush of water,
whose ravages are still marked by the site of streets and bazaars now
converted into gardens or places of recreation, containing thousands of
acres within the walls, subdivided by hedges of the cactus, the natural
fence of Mewar, which alike thrives in the valley or covers the most
barren spots of her highest hills. But although the superstitious look
grave, and add that a son was also taken from him on this very day, yet
the Rana persists in maintaining the fête he established; the barge is
manned, he and his chiefs circumnavigate the Pichola, regale on ma’ajun,
and terrify Varuna (the water-god) with the pyrotechnic exhibitions.

Although the court calendar of Udaipur notices only those festivals on
which State processions occur, yet there are many minor fêtes, which are
neither unimportant nor uninteresting. We shall enumerate a few, alike
in Baisakh, Jeth, and Asarh, which are blank as to the Nakkara Aswari.

=Savitrivrata Festival.=—On the 29th Baisakh there is a fast common to
India peculiar to the women, who perform certain rites under the sacred
fig-tree (the _vata_ or _pipal_), to preserve them from widowhood; and
hence the name of the fast Savitri-vrata.[4.21.62]

=Festivals in the month Jeth: May-June.=—On the 2nd of Jeth, when the
sun is in the zenith, the Rajput ladies commemorate the birth of the
sea-born goddess Rambha, the queen of the naiads or Apsaras,[4.21.63]
whose birth, like that of Venus, was from the froth of the waters; and
[579] hence the Rajput bards designate all the fair messengers of heaven
by the name of Apsaras, who summon the ‘chosen’ from the field of
battle, and convey him to the ‘mansion of the sun.’[4.21.64]

=The Aranya-Shashthi Festival.=—On the 6th of Jeth the ladies have
another festival called the Aranya Shashthi, because on this day those
desirous of offspring walk in the woods (_aranya_) to gather and eat
certain herbs. Sir W. Jones has remarked the analogy between this and
the Druidic ceremony of gathering the mistletoe (also on the Shashthi,
or 6th day of the moon), as a preservative against sterility.

=Festivals in the month Āsārh: June-July.=—Asarh, the initiative month
of the periodical rains, has no particular festivity at Udaipur, though
in other parts of India the Rathayatra, or procession of the car of
Vishnu or Jagannatha (lord of the universe) is well known: this is on
the 2nd and the 11th, ‘the night of the gods,’ when Vishnu (the sun)
reposes four months.

=Festivals in the month Sāwan: July-August.=—Sawan, classically Sravana.
There are two important festivals, with processions, in this month.

=The Tij.=—The third, emphatically called ‘the Tij’ (third), is sacred
to the mountain goddess Parvati, being the day on which, after long
austerities, she was reunited to Siva: she accordingly declared it holy,
and proclaimed that whoever invoked her on that day should possess
whatever was desired. The Tij is accordingly reverenced by the women,
and the husbandman of Rajasthan, who deems it a most favourable day to
take possession of land, or to reinhabit a deserted dwelling. When on
the expulsion of the predatory powers from the devoted lands of Mewar,
proclamations were disseminated far and wide, recalling the expatriated
inhabitants, they showed their love of country by obedience to the
summons. Collecting their goods and chattels, they congregated from all
parts, but assembled at a common rendezvous to make their entry to the
_bapota_, ‘land of their sires,’ on the Tij of Sawan. On this fortunate
occasion, a band of three hundred men, women, and children, with colours
flying, drums beating, the females taking precedence with brass vessels
of water on their heads, and chanting the _suhaila_ (song of joy),
entered the town of Kapasan, to revisit their desolate dwellings [580],
and return thanks on their long-abandoned altars to Parvati[4.21.65] for
a happiness they had never contemplated.

Red garments are worn by all classes on this day, and at Jaipur clothes
of this colour are presented by the Raja to all the chiefs. At that
court the Tij is kept with more honour than at Udaipur. An image of
Parvati on the Tij, richly attired, is borne on a throne by women
chanting hymns, attended by the prince and his nobles. On this day,
fathers present red garments and stuffs to their daughters.

=The Nāgpanchami Festival: Serpent Worship.=—The 5th is the Nagpanchami,
or day set apart for the propitiation of the chief of the reptile race,
the Naga or serpent. Few subjects have more occupied the notice of the
learned world than the mysteries of Ophite worship, which are to be
traced wherever there existed a remnant of civilization, or indeed of
humanity; among the savages of the savannahs[4.21.66] of America, and
the magi of Fars, with whom it was the type of evil,—their
Ahrimanes.[4.21.67] The Nagas, or serpent-genii of the Rajputs, have a
semi-human structure, precisely as Diodorus describes the snake-mother
of the Scythae, in whose country originated this serpent-worship,
engrafted on the tenets of Zardusht, of the Puranas of the priesthood of
Egypt, and on the fables of early Greece.[4.21.68] Dupuis, Volney, and
other expounders of the mystery, have given an astronomical solution to
what they deem a varied ramification of an ancient fable, of which that
of Greece, ‘the dragon guarding the fruits of Hesperides,’ may be
considered the most elegant version. Had these learned men seen those
ancient sculptures in India, which represent ‘the fall,’ they might have
changed their opinion. The traditions of the Jains or Buddhists
(originating in the land of the Takshaks,[4.21.69] or Turkistan) assert
the creation of the human species in pairs, called _jugal_, who fed off
the ever-fructifying _kalpa-vriksha_, which possesses all the characters
of the Tree of Life, like it bearing

                   Ambrosial fruit of vegetable gold;

which was termed _amrita_, and rendered them immortal. A drawing,
brought by [581] Colonel Coombs, from a sculptured column in a cave
temple in the south of India, represents the first pair at the foot of
this ambrosial tree, and a serpent entwined among the heavily laden
boughs, presenting to them some of the fruit from his mouth. The tempter
appears to be at that part of his discourse, when

                       ... his words, replete with guile,
               Into her heart too easy entrance won:
               Fixed on the fruit she gazed.

This is a curious subject to be engraved on an ancient pagan temple; if
Jain or Buddhist, the interest would be considerably enhanced. On this
festival, at Udaipur, as well as throughout India, they strew particular
plants about the threshold, to prevent the entrance of reptiles.

=The Rākhi Festival.=—This festival, which is held on the last day of
Sawan, was instituted in honour of the good genii, when Durvasas the
sage instructed Salono (the genius or nymph presiding over the month of
Sawan) to bind on _rakhis_, or bracelets, as charms to avert evil. The
ministers of religion and females alone are privileged to bestow these
charmed wrist-bands. The ladies of Rajasthan, either by their handmaids
or the family priests, send a bracelet as the token of their esteem to
such as they adopt as brothers, who return gifts in acknowledgement of
the honour. The claims thus acquired by the fair are far stronger than
those of consanguinity: for illustration of which I may refer to an
incident already related in the annals of this house.[4.21.70] Sisters
also present their brothers with clothes on this day, who make an
offering of gold in return.[4.21.71]

This day is hailed by the Brahmans as indemnifying them for their
expenditure of silk and spangles, with which they decorate the wrists of
all who are likely to make a proper return.

=Festivals in the month Bhādon: August-September.=—On the 3rd there is a
grand procession to the Chaugan; and the 8th, or Ashtami, is the birth
of Krishna, which will be described at large in an account of Nathdwara.
There are several holidays in this month, when the periodical [582]
rains are in full descent; but that on the last but one (Sudi 14, or
29th) is the most remarkable.

=Ancestor Worship.=—On this day[4.21.72] commences the worship of the
ancestorial manes (the Pitrideva, or _father-gods_) of the Rajputs,
which continues for fifteen days. The Rana goes to the cemetery at Ara,
and performs at the cenotaph of each of his forefathers the rites
enjoined, consisting of ablutions, prayers, and the hanging of garlands
of flowers, and leaves sacred to the dead, on their monuments. Every
chieftain does the same amongst the altars of the ‘great ancients’
(_bara burha_); or, if absent from their estates, they accompany their
sovereign to Ara.


Footnote 4.21.1:

  _Travels in Scandinavia_, vol. i. p. 33.

Footnote 4.21.2:


Footnote 4.21.3:


Footnote 4.21.4:

  Suryas and Induputras.

Footnote 4.21.5:

  [For the Vedic cult of Sūrya see Macdonell, “Vedic Mythology,”
  _Grundriss der Indo-Arischen Philologie und Altertumskunde_, 1897, p.
  30 ff.]

Footnote 4.21.6:

  The Sauromatae or Sarmatians of early Europe, as well as the Syrians,
  were most probably colonies of the same Suryavansi who simultaneously
  peopled the shores of the Caspian and Mediterranean, and the banks of
  the Indus and Ganges. Many of the tribes described by Strabo as
  dwelling around the Caspian are enumerated amongst the thirty-six
  royal races of India. One of these, the Sakasenae, supposed to be the
  ancestors of our own Saxon race, settled themselves on the Araxes in
  Armenia, adjoining Albania. [There are no grounds for these

Footnote 4.21.7:

  [There are no grounds for this classification.]

Footnote 4.21.8:

  Long after the overthrow of the Greek kingdom of Bactria by the Yuti
  or Getes [Sakas] this region was popular and flourishing. In the year
  120 before Christ, De Guignes says: “Dans ce pays on trouvait
  d’excellens grains, du vin de vigne, plus de cent villes, tant grandes
  que petites. Il est aussi fait mention du Tahia situé au midi du
  Gihon, et où il y a de grandes villes murées. Le général chinois y vit
  des toiles de l’Inde et autres marchandises, etc., etc.” (_Hist. Gén.
  des Huns_, vol. i. p. 51).

Footnote 4.21.9:

  Yavan or Javan is a celebrated link of the Indu (_lunar_) genealogical
  chain; nor need we go to Ionia for it, though the Ionians may be a
  colony descended from Javan, the ninth from Yayati, who was the third
  son of Ayu, the ancestor of the Hindu as well as of the Tatar
  Induvansi. [Yavana is the general term for a foreigner, especially the
  non-Hindu tribes of the N.W. Frontier, and those beyond them.] The
  Asuras, who are so often described as invaders of India, and which
  word has ordinarily a mere irreligious acceptation, I firmly believe
  to mean the Assyrians. [This theory was adopted by J. Fergusson, _Cave
  Temples of India_, 34.]

Footnote 4.21.10:

  [Such analogies of custom do not prove ethnical identity.]

Footnote 4.21.11:

  [The theory breaks down, because the name of the sword of Argantýr was
  Tyrfing, or better Tyrfingr, the derivation of which word, as Mr. H.
  M. Chadwick kindly informs me, according to Vigfússon’s _Icelandic
  Dictionary_, is from _tyrfi_, a resinous fir-tree used for kindling a
  fire, because the sword flamed like resinous wood.]

Footnote 4.21.12:

  See Turner’s _History of Anglo-Saxons_ for Indo-Scythic words.

Footnote 4.21.13:

  There were no less than four distinguished leaders of this name
  amongst the vassals of the last Rajput emperor of Delhi; and one of
  them, who turned traitor to his sovereign and joined Shihabu-d-din,
  was actually a Scythian, and of the Gakkhar race, which maintained
  their ancient habits of polyandry even in Babur’s time. The Haoli Rao
  Hamira was lord of Kangra and the Gakkhars of Pamir.

Footnote 4.21.14:

  Turner, when discussing the history of the Sakai, or Sakaseni, of the
  Caspian, whom he justly supposes to be the Saxons of the Baltic, takes
  occasion to introduce some words of Scythic origin (preserved by
  ancient writers), to almost every one of which, without straining
  etymology, we may give a Sanskrit origin. [There is no ground for
  ascribing a Scythic origin to the proper names in the text.]

                         Scythic.               Sanskrit or Bhakha.

 Exampaios    sacred ways                    _Agham_ is the sacred
                                               book; _pai_ and _pada_,
                                               a foot; _pantha_, a

 Arimu        one                            _Ad_ is _the first_;
                                               whence _Adima_, or man.

 Spou         an eye.

 Oior         a man.

 Pata         to kill                        _Badh_, to kill.

 Tahiti       the chief deity is Vesta       Tap is heat or flame; the
                                               type of Vesta.

 Papaios           ”     ”                   Jupiter  Baba, or Bapa,
                                               the universal father.
                                               The Hindu Jiva-pitri, or
                                               _Father_ of Life [?].

 Oitosuros         ”     ”   Apollo          Aitiswara, or Sun-God,
                                               applicable to Vishnu,
                                               who has every attribute
                                               of Apollo; from _ait_,
                                               contraction of _aditya_,
                                               the sun.

 Artimpasa,        ”     ”   Venus           Apsaras because born from
 or Aripasa                                    the froth or essence,
                                               ‘_sara_,’ of the waters,
                                               ‘_ap_’ [‘going in the

 Thamimasadus      ”     ”   Neptune         Thoenatha; or _God of the

 Apia         wife of Papaios, or Earth      Amba, Ama, Uma, is the
                                               _universal mother_; wife
                                               of ‘Baba Adam,’ as they
                                               term the universal

  See Turner’s _History of the Anglo-Saxons_, vol. i. p. 35. [Many of
  the identifications are obsolete.]

Footnote 4.21.15:

  Sir W. Jones, “On the Lunar Year of the Hindus,” _Asiatic Researches_,
  vol. iii. p. 257.

Footnote 4.21.16:

  Bhaskara saptami, in honour of the sun, as a form of Vishnu (Varaha
  Purana) Makari, from the sun entering the constellation _Makara_
  (Pisces), the first of the solar Magha (see _Asiatic Researches_, vol.
  iii. p. 273).

Footnote 4.21.17:

   See Vol. I. p. 91.

Footnote 4.21.18:

  This word appears to have the same import as Thor, the sun-god and war
  divinity of the Scandinavians. [? _Thāwar_, Saturday; Skt. _sthāvara_,

Footnote 4.21.19:

  Odin is also called _As_ or ‘lord’; the Gauls also called him Oes or
  Es, and with a Latin termination Hesus, whom Lucan calls Esus; Edda,
  vol. ii. pp. 45-6. The celebrated translator of these invaluable
  remnants of ancient superstitions, by which alone light can be thrown
  on the origin of nations, observes that Es or Oes is the name for God
  with all the Celtic races. So it was with the Tuscans, doubtless from
  the Sanskrit, or rather from a more provincial tongue, the common
  contraction of Iswara, the Egyptian Osiris, the Persian Syr, the
  sun-god. [These words have, of course, no connexion. Syria perhaps
  derives its name from the Suri, a north-Euphratian tribe
  (_Encyclopaedia Biblica_, iv. 4845).]

Footnote 4.21.20:

  Which Mallet, from Hesychius, interprets ‘good star.’ [The name
  Goetosyrus or Octosyrus (Herodotus iv. 59) is so uncertain in form
  that it is useless to propose etymologies for it (E. H. Minns,
  _Scythians and Greeks_, 86). Rawlinson (_Herodotus_, 3rd ed. ii. 93)
  compares Greek αἴθος, Skt. _sūrya_, in the sense ‘bright, burning

Footnote 4.21.21:

  Mallet’s _Northern Antiquities_, vol. ii. p. 42.

Footnote 4.21.22:

  [Much of this is from Sir W. Jones, Wilford and Paterson (_Asiatic
  Researches_, i. 253, iii. 141, viii. 48). Herodotus (i. 216) ascribes
  the custom of Sun sacrifice to the Massagetae.]

Footnote 4.21.23:

  [The Mughal emperors followed the same practice (Manucci i. 98).]

Footnote 4.21.24:

  In his delight for this diversion, the Rajput evinces his Scythic
  propensity. The grand hunts of the last Chauhan emperor often led him
  into warfare, for Prithiraj was a poacher of the first magnitude, and
  one of his battles with the Tatars was while engaged in field sports
  on the Ravi. The heir of Jenghiz Khan was chief huntsman, the highest
  office of the State amongst the Scythic Tatars; as Ajanbahu, alike
  celebrated in either field of war and sport, was chief huntsman to the
  Chauhan emperor of Delhi, whose bard enters minutely into the subject,
  describing all the variety of dogs of chase.

Footnote 4.21.25:

  A hog in Hindi; in Persian _khuk_, nearly our _hog_ [?].

Footnote 4.21.26:

  Chief of Salumbar.

Footnote 4.21.27:

  Chief of Hamirgarh.

Footnote 4.21.28:

  [On the slaughter of the boar representing a corn-spirit see Sir J.
  Frazer, _The Golden Bough_, 3rd ed. Part v. vol. i. 298 ff.; Robertson
  Smith, _Religion of the Semites_, 2nd ed. 290 f.]

Footnote 4.21.29:

  He has been the father of more than one hundred children, legitimate
  and illegitimate, though very few are living.

Footnote 4.21.30:

  That this can be done without any loss of dignity by the _Sahib log_
  (a name European gentlemen have assumed) is well known to those who
  may have partaken of the hospitalities of that honourable man, and
  brave and zealous officer, Colonel James Skinner, C.B., at Hansi. That
  his example is worthy of imitation in the mode of commanding, is best
  evinced by the implicit and cheerful obedience his men pay to his
  instructions when removed from his personal control. He has passed
  through the ordeal of nearly thirty years of unremitted service, and
  from the glorious days of Delhi and Laswari under Lake, to the last
  siege of Bharatpur, James Skinner has been second to none. In
  obtaining for this gallant and modest officer the order of the Bath,
  Lord Combermere must have been applauded by every person who knows the
  worth of him who bears it, which includes the whole army of Bengal.
  [James Skinner, 1778-1841. See Compton, _Military Adventurers_, 389
  ff.; Buckland, _Dict. Indian Biography_, s.v.]

Footnote 4.21.31:

  Evinced in the presentation of the _sriphala_, the fruit of _Sri_,
  which is the coco-nut, emblematic of fruitfulness.

Footnote 4.21.32:

  Another point of resemblance to the Roman Saturnalia.

Footnote 4.21.33:

  A hall so called in honour of Ganesa, or Janus, whose effigies adorn
  the entrance. [Janus probably = Dianus: Ganesa, ‘lord of the troops of
  inferior deities’ (_gana_).]

Footnote 4.21.34:

  See p. 394.

Footnote 4.21.35:

  See p. 324.

Footnote 4.21.36:

  [See Hastings, _Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics_, viii. 868 f.]

Footnote 4.21.37:

  It fell on the 18th March 1819.

Footnote 4.21.38:

  [For festivals in honour of Gauri see _IA_, xxxv. (1906) 61.]

Footnote 4.21.39:

  Personification of spring.

Footnote 4.21.40:

  Here we have Gauri as the type of the earth.

Footnote 4.21.41:

  [The Gardens of Adonis, for which see Sir J. Frazer, _Adonis_,
  _Attis_, _Osiris_, 3rd ed. i. 236 ff.]

Footnote 4.21.42:

  Here the Hindu mixes Persian with his Sanskrit, and produces the
  mongrel dialect Hindi.

Footnote 4.21.43:

  Takht, Pat, Persian and Sanskrit, alike meaning _board_.

Footnote 4.21.44:

  The Ephesian Diana is the twin sister of Gauri, and can have a
  Sanskrit derivation in Devianna, ‘the goddess of food,’ contracted
  Deanna, though commonly Anna-de or Anna-devi, and Annapurna, ‘filling
  with food,’ or the nourisher, the name applied by ‘the mother of
  mankind,’ when she places the repast before the messenger of heaven:

                 “Heavenly Stranger, please to taste
           These bounties, which our Nourisher, from whom
           All perfect good, unmeasured out, descends,
           To us for food and for delight, hath caused
           The earth to yield.”
                              _Paradise Lost_, Bk. v. 397-401.

  [Diana is the feminine form of Dianus, Janus.]

Footnote 4.21.45:

  ii. 59-64.

Footnote 4.21.46:

  _Analysis of Ancient Mythology_, p. 312.

Footnote 4.21.47:

  [_Germania_, ix.]

Footnote 4.21.48:

  Hesus is probably derived from Iswara, or Isa, _the_ god. Toth was the
  Egyptian, and Teutates the Scandinavian, Mercury. I have elsewhere
  attempted to trace the origin of the Suevi, Su, or Yeuts of Yeutland
  (Jutland), to Yute, Getae, or Jat, of Central Asia, who carried thence
  the religion of Buddha into India as well as to the Baltic. There is
  little doubt that the races called Jotner, Jaeter, Jotuns, Jacts, and
  Yeuts, who followed the Asi into Scandinavia, migrated from the
  Jaxartes, the land of the great Getae (Massagetae); the leader was
  supposed to be endued with supernatural powers, like the Buddhist,
  called Vidiavan, or magician, whose haunts adjoined Aria, the cradle
  of the Magi. They are designated Aripunta [?], under the sign of a
  serpent, the type of Budha; or Ahriman, ‘the foe of man.’ [Much of
  this crude speculation is taken from Wilford (_Asiatic Researches_,
  iii. 133).]

Footnote 4.21.49:

  The German Ertha, to show her kindred to the Ila of the Rajputs, had
  her car drawn by a cow, under which form the Hindus typify the earth

Footnote 4.21.50:

  Let it be borne in mind that Indu, Chandra, Soma, are all epithets for
  ‘the moon,’ or as _he_ is classically styled (in an inscription of the
  famous Kumarpal, which I discovered in Chitor), Nisanath, the ruler of
  darkness (Nisa).

Footnote 4.21.51:

  [Kedārnāth has, of course, no connexion with the _cedar_ tree. The
  origin of the name ‘Lord of Kedār’ is unknown; probably Kedār was an
  old cult title of Siva.]

Footnote 4.21.52:

  I have before remarked that a Sanskrit etymology might be given to
  this word in Ila and Isa, _i.e._ ‘the goddess of the earth’ [?] [p.
  636, note].

Footnote 4.21.53:

  I was informed at Naples that four thousand of these were dug out of
  one spot, and I obtained while at Paestum many fragments and heads of
  this goddess.

Footnote 4.21.54:

  Prichard’s _Researches into the Physical History of Man_, p. 369. [For
  a full discussion of ὠμοφαγία see Miss J. E. Harrison, _Prolegomena to
  the Study of Greek Religion_, 483 ff.]

Footnote 4.21.55:

  The Buddhists of Tartary make no scruple of eating flesh.

Footnote 4.21.56:

  _Durga_, ‘a fort’; as Suvarnadurg, ‘the golden castle,’ etc., etc.

Footnote 4.21.57:

  Literally _Tripoli_, ‘the three cities,’ _pura_, _polis_.

Footnote 4.21.58:

  [The double jasmin (_Michelia champaka_).]

Footnote 4.21.59:

  Cupid’s bow is formed of a garland of flowers.

Footnote 4.21.60:

  Madana, he who intoxicates with desire (_kama_), both epithets of the
  god of love. The festivals on the 13th and 14th are called Madana
  trayodasi (the tenth) and Chaturdasi (fourteenth).

Footnote 4.21.61:

  _Asiatic Researches_, vol. iii. p. 278.

Footnote 4.21.62:

  [Savitri-vrata means ‘the vow to Savitri,’ and has no connexion with
  the _vata_ or banyan-tree. But the tree is worshipped in connexion
  with it on 15th light or dark fortnight of the month Jeth (_Census
  Report, Baroda_, 1901, i. 127).]

Footnote 4.21.63:

  _Ap_, ‘water,’ and _sara_, ‘froth or essence.’ [The word means ‘going
  in the waters, or between the waters of the clouds.’]

Footnote 4.21.64:

  The Romans held the calends of June (generally Jeth) sacred to the
  goddess Carna, significant of the sun. Carneus was the sun-god of the
  Celts, and a name of Apollo at Sparta, and other Grecian cities. The
  Karneia was a festival in honour of Apollo.

Footnote 4.21.65:

  The story of the vigils of Parvati, preparatory to her being reunited
  to her lord, consequent to her sacrifice as _Sati_, is the counterpart
  of the Grecian fable of Cybele, her passion for, and marriage with,
  the youth Atys or _Papas_, the _Baba_, or universal father, of the

Footnote 4.21.66:

  How did a word of Persian growth come to signify ‘the boundless brake’
  of the new world?

Footnote 4.21.67:

  _Ari_, ‘a foe’; _manus_, ‘man.’ [Angro Mainyush, ‘destructive

Footnote 4.21.68:

  [There is no reason to believe that snake-worship was not
  independently practised in India.]

Footnote 4.21.69:

  This is the snake-race of India, the foes of the Pandus.

Footnote 4.21.70:

  See p. 364.

Footnote 4.21.71:

  I returned from three to five pieces of gold for the _rakhis_ sent by
  my adopted sisters; from one of whom, the sister of the Rana, I
  annually received this pledge by one of her handmaids; three of them I
  have yet in my possession, though I never saw the donor, who is now no
  more. I had, likewise, some presented through the family priest, from
  the Bundi queen-mother, with whom I have conversed for hours, though
  she was invisible to me; and from the ladies of rank of the
  chieftains’ families, but one of whom I ever beheld, though they often
  called upon me for the performance of brotherly offices in consequence
  of such tie. There is a delicacy in this custom, with which the bond
  uniting the cavaliers of Europe to the service of the fair, in the
  days of chivalry, will not compare.

Footnote 4.21.72:

  Sacred to Vishnu, with the title of _Ananta_, or
  infinite—_Bhavishyottara_. (See _Asiatic Researches_, vol. iii. p.
  291.) Here Vishnu appears as ‘lord of the manes.’


                               CHAPTER 22

=Khadga Sthapana, Sword Worship.=—The festival in which this imposing
rite occurs is the Nauratri,[4.22.1] sacred to the god of war,
commencing on the first of the month Asoj. It is essentially martial,
and confined to the Rajput, who on the departure of the monsoon finds
himself at liberty to indulge his passion whether for rapine or revenge,
both which in these tropical regions are necessarily suspended during
the rains. Arguing from the order of the passions, we may presume that
the first objects of emblematic worship were connected with war [583],
and we accordingly find the highest reverence paid to arms by every
nation of antiquity. The Scythic warrior of Central Asia, the intrepid
Gete, admitted no meaner representative of the god of battle than his
own scimitar.[4.22.2] He worshipped it, he swore by it; it was buried
with him, in order that he might appear before the martial divinity in
the other world as became his worshipper on earth: for the Gete of
Transoxiana, from the earliest ages, not only believed in the soul’s
immortality, and in the doctrine of rewards and punishments hereafter,
but, according to the father of history, he was a monotheist; of which
fact he has left a memorable proof in the punishment of the celebrated
Anacharsis, who, on his return from a visit to Thales and his brother
philosophers of Greece, attempted to introduce into the land of the Saka
(Sakatai) the corrupted polytheism of Athens.

If we look westward from this the central land of earliest civilization,
to Dacia, Thrace, Pannonia, the seats of the Thyssagetae or western
Getae, we find the same form of adoration addressed to the emblem of
Mars, as mentioned by Xenophon in his memorable retreat, and practised
by Alaric and his Goths, centuries afterwards, in the Acropolis of
Athens. If we transport ourselves to the shores of Scandinavia, amongst
the Cimbri and Getae of Jutland, to the Ultima Thule, wherever the name
of Gete prevails, we shall find the same adoration paid by the Getic
warrior to his sword.

The Frisian Frank also of Gothic race, adhered to this worship, and
transmitted it with the other rites of the Getic warrior of the
Jaxartes; such as the adoration of the steed, sacred to the sun, the
great god of the Massagetae, as well as of the Rajput, who sacrificed it
at the annual feast, or with his arms and wife burnt it on his funeral
pile. Even the kings of the ‘second race’ kept up the religion of their
Scythic sires from the Jaxartes, and the bones of the war-horse of
Chilperic were exhumed with those of the monarch. These rites, as well
as those long-cherished chivalrous notions, for which the Salian Franks
have ever been conspicuous [584], had their birth in Central Asia; for
though contact with the more polished Arab softened the harsh character
of the western warrior, his thirst for glory, the romantic charm which
fed his passion, and his desire to please the fair, he inherited from
his ancestors on the shores of the Baltic, which were colonized from the
Oxus. Whether Charlemagne addressed his sword as Joyeuse,[4.22.3] or the
Scandinavian hero Angantýr as the enchanted blade Tyrfing (Hialmar’s
bane), each came from one common origin, the people which invented the
custom of Khadga Sthapana, or ‘adoration of the sword.’ But neither the
falchion ‘made by the dwarfs for Suafurlama,’ nor the redoubled sword of
Bayard with which he dubbed the first Francis,—not even the enchanted
brand of Ariosto’s hero, can for a moment compare with the double-edged
khanda (scimitar) annually worshipped by the chivalry of Mewar. Before I
descant on this monstrous blade, I shall give an abstract of the
ceremonies on each of the nine days sacred to the god of war.

=The Dasahra Festival.=—On the 1st of Asoj, after fasting, ablution, and
prayer on the part of the prince and his household, the double-edged
khanda is removed from the hall of arms (_ayudhsala_), and having
received the homage (_puja_) of the court, it is carried in procession
to the Kishanpol (gate of Kishan), where it is delivered to the Raj
Jogi,[4.22.4] the Mahants, and band of Jogis assembled in front of the
temple of Devi ‘_the_ goddess,’ adjoining the portal of Kishan.[4.22.5]
By these, the monastic militant adorers of Hara, the god of battle, the
brand emblematic of the divinity is placed[4.22.6] on the altar before
the image of his divine consort. At three in the afternoon the nakkaras,
or grand kettle-drums, proclaim from the Tripolia[4.22.7] the signal for
the assemblage of the chiefs with their retainers; and the Rana and his
cavalcade proceed direct to the stables, when a buffalo is sacrificed in
honour of the war-horse. Thence the procession moves to the temple of
Devi, where the Raja Krishan (_Godi_) has proceeded. Upon this, the Rana
seats himself close to the Raj Jogi, presents two pieces of [585] silver
and a coco-nut, performs homage to the sword (_khadga_), and returns to
the palace.

Asoj 2nd. In similar state he proceeds to the Chaugan, their Champ de
Mars, where a buffalo is sacrificed; and on the same day another buffalo
victim is felled by the nervous arm of a Rajput, near the Toranpol, or
triumphal gate. In the evening the Rana goes to the temple of Amba Mata,
the universal mother, when several goats and buffaloes bleed to the

The 3rd. Procession to the Chaugan, when another buffalo is offered; and
in the afternoon five buffaloes and two rams are sacrificed to Harsiddh

On the 4th, as on every one of the nine days, the first visit is to the
Champ de Mars: the day opens with the slaughter of a buffalo. The Rana
proceeds to the temple of Devi, when he worships the sword, and the
standard of the Raj Jogi, to whom, as the high-priest of Siva, the god
of war, he pays homage, and makes offering of sugar, and a garland of
roses. A buffalo having been previously fixed to a stake near the
temple, the Rana sacrifices him with his own hand, by piercing him from
his travelling throne (raised on men’s shoulders and surrounded by his
vassals) with an arrow. In the days of his strength, he seldom failed
almost to bury the feather in the flank of the victim; but on the last
occasion his enfeebled arm made him exclaim with Prithiraj, when,
captive and blind, he was brought forth to amuse the Tartar despot, “I
draw not the bow as in the days of yore.”

On the 5th, after the usual sacrifice at the Chaugan, and an elephant
fight, the procession marches to the temple of Asapurna (Hope); a
buffalo and a ram are offered to the goddess adored by all the Rajputs,
and the tutelary divinity of the Chauhans. On this day the lives of some
victims are spared at the intercession of the Nagar-Seth, or
chief-magistrate,[4.22.9] and those of his faith, the Jains.

On the 6th, the Rana visits the Chaugan, but makes no sacrifice. In the
afternoon, prayers and victims to Devi; and in the evening the Rana
visits Bhikharinath, the chief of the Kanphara Jogis, or split-ear

The 7th. After the daily routine at the Chaugan, and sacrifices to Devi
(the goddess of destruction), the chief equerry is commanded to adorn
the steeds with their new caparisons, and lead them to be bathed in the
lake. At night, the sacred fire (_hom_) is kindled, and a buffalo and a
ram are sacrificed to Devi; the Jogis [586] are called up and feasted on
boiled rice and sweetmeats. On the conclusion of this day, the Rana and
his chieftains visit the hermitage of Sukharia Baba, an anchorite of the
Jogi sect.

8th. There is the _homa_, or fire-sacrifice in the palace. In the
afternoon, the prince, with a select cavalcade, proceeds to the village
of Samina, beyond the city walls, and visits a celebrated

9th. There is no morning procession. The horses from the royal stables,
as well as those of the chieftains, are taken to the lake, and bathed by
their grooms, and on returning from purification they are caparisoned in
their new housings, led forth, and receive the homage of their riders,
and the Rana bestows a largess on the master of the horse, the
equerries, and grooms. At three in the afternoon, the nakkaras having
thrice sounded, the whole State insignia, under a select band, proceed
to Mount Matachal, and bring home the sword. When its arrival in the
court of the palace is announced, the Rana advances and receives it with
due homage from the hands of the Raj Jogi, who is presented with a
khilat; while the Mahant, who has performed all the austerities during
the nine days, has his _patra_[4.22.11] filled with gold and silver
coin. The whole of the Jogis are regaled, and presents are made to their
chiefs. The elephants and horses again receive homage, and the sword,
the shield, and spear are worshipped within the palace. At three in the
morning the prince takes repose.

The 10th, or Dasahra,[4.22.12] is a festival universally known in India,
and respected by all classes, although entirely military, being
commemorative of the day on which the deified Rama commenced his
expedition to Lanka for the redemption of Sita;[4.22.13] the ‘tenth of
Asoj’ is consequently deemed by the Rajput a fortunate day for warlike
enterprise. The day commences with a visit from the [587] prince or
chieftain to his spiritual guide. Tents and carpets are prepared at the
Chaugan or Matachal mount, where the artillery is sent; and in the
afternoon the Rana, his chiefs, and their retainers repair to the field
of Mars, worship the _khejra_ tree,[4.22.14] liberate the _nilkanth_ or
jay (sacred to Rama), and return amidst a discharge of guns.

11th. In the morning, the Rana, with all the State insignia, the
kettledrums sounding in the rear, proceeds towards the Matachal mount,
and takes the muster of his troops, amidst discharges of cannon,
tilting, and display of horsemanship. The spectacle is imposing even in
the decline of this house. The hilarity of the party, the diversified
costume, the various forms, colours, and decorations of the turbans, in
which some have the heron plume, or sprigs from some shrub sacred to the
god of war; the clusters of lances, shining matchlocks, and black
bucklers, the scarlet housings of the steeds, and waving pennons, recall
forcibly the glorious days of the devoted Sanga, or the immortal Partap,
who on such occasions collected round the black _changi_ and crimson
banner of Mewar a band of sixteen thousand of his own kin and clan,
whose lives were their lord’s and their country’s. The shops and bazaars
are ornamented with festoons of flowers and branches of trees, while the
costliest cloths and brocades are extended on screens, to do honour to
their prince; the _toran_ (or triumphal arch) is placed before the tent,
on a column of which he places one hand as he alights, and before
entering makes several circumambulations. All present offer their
_nazars_ to the prince, the artillery fires, and the bards raise ‘the
song of praise,’ celebrating the glories of the past; the fame of Samra,
who fell with thirteen thousand of his kin on the Ghaggar; of Arsi and
his twelve brave sons, who gave themselves as victims for the salvation
of Chitor; of Kumbha, Lakha, Sanga, Partap, Amra, Raj, all descended of
the blood of Rama, whose exploits, three thousand five hundred years
before, they are met to celebrate. The situation of Matachal is well
calculated for such a spectacle, as indeed is the whole ground from the
palace through the Delhi portal to the mount, on which is erected one of
the several castles commanding the approaches to the city. The fort is
dedicated to Mata, though it would not long remain stable (_achal_)
before a battery of thirty-six pounders. The guns are drawn up about the
termination of the slope of the natural glacis; the Rana and his court
remain on horseback [588] half up the ascent; and while every chief or
vassal is at liberty to leave his ranks, and “witch the world with noble
horsemanship,” there is nothing tumultuous, nothing offensive in their

The steeds purchased since the last festival are named, and as the
cavalcade returns, their grooms repeat the appellations of each as the
word is passed by the master of the horse; as Baj Raj, ‘the royal
steed’; Hayamor, ‘the chief of horses’; Manika, ‘the gem’; Bajra, ‘the
thunderbolt,’ etc., etc. On returning to the palace, gifts are presented
by the Rana to his chiefs. The Chauhan chief of Kotharia claims the
apparel which his prince wears on this day, in token of the fidelity of
his ancestor to the minor, Udai Singh, in Akbar’s wars. To others, a
fillet or _balaband_ for the turban is presented; but all such
compliments are regulated by precedent or immediate merit.

=The Toran Arch.=—Thus terminates the Nauratri festival sacred to the
god of war, which in every point of view is analogous to the autumnal
festival of the Scythic warlike nations, when these princes took the
muster of their armies, and performed the same rites to the great
celestial luminary.[4.22.15] I have presented to the antiquarian reader
these details, because it is in minute particulars that analogous
customs are detected. Thus the temporary _toran_, or triumphal arch,
erected in front of the tent at Mount Mataehala would scarcely claim the
least notice, but that we discover even in this emblem the origin of the
triumphal arches of antiquity, with many other rites which may be traced
to the Indo-Scythic races of Asia. The _toran_ in its original form
consisted of two columns and an architrave, constituting the number
three, sacred to Hara, the god of war. In the progress of the arts the
architrave gave way to the Hindu arch, which consisted of two or more
ribs without the keystone, the apex being the perpendicular junction of
the archivaults; nor is the arc of the _toran_ semicircular, or any
segment of a circle, but with that graceful curvature which stamps with
originality one of the arches of the Normans, who may have brought it
from their ancient seats on the Oxus, whence it may also have been [589]
carried within the Indus. The cromlech, or trilithic altar in the centre
of all those monuments called Druidic, is most probably a _toran_,
sacred to the Sun-god Belenus, like Har, or Balsiva, the god of battle,
to whom as soon as a temple is raised the _toran_ is erected, and many
of these are exquisitely beautiful.

=Gates.=—An interesting essay might be written on portes and _torans_,
their names and attributes, and the genii presiding as their guardians.
Amongst all the nations of antiquity, the portal has had its peculiar
veneration: to pass it was a privilege regarded as a mark of honour. The
Jew Haman, in the true Oriental style, took post at the king’s gate as
an inexpugnable position. The most pompous court in Europe takes its
title from its _porte_, where, as at Udaipur, all alight. The Tripolia,
or triple portal, the entry to the magnificent terrace in front of the
Rana’s palace, consists, like the Roman arcs of triumph, of three
arches, still preserving the numeral sacred to the god of battle, one of
whose titles is Tripura, which may be rendered Tripoli, or lord of the
three places of abode, or cities, but applied in its extensive sense to
the three worlds, heaven, earth, and hell. From the Sanskrit _Pola_ we
have the Greek πύλη, _a gate_, or pass; and in the guardian or _Polia_,
the πυλωρός or porter; while to this _langue mère_ our own language is
indebted, not only for its portes and porters, but its doors
(_dwara_).[4.22.16] Pylos signified also a pass; so in Sanskrit these
natural barriers are called _Palas_, and hence the poetical epithet
applied to the aboriginal mountain tribes of Rajasthan, namely, Palipati
and Palindra, ‘lords of the pass.’[4.22.17]

=Ganesa.=—One of the most important of the Roman divinities was Janus,
whence Januae, or portals, of which he was the guardian.[4.22.18] A
resemblance between the Ganesa of the Hindu pantheon and the Roman Janus
has been pointed out by Sir W. Jones, but his analogy extended little
beyond nominal similarity. The fable of the birth of Ganesa furnishes us
with the origin of the worship of Janus, and as it has never been given,
I shall transcribe it from the bard Chand. Ganesa is the chief of the
genii[4.22.19] attendant on the god of war, and was expressly formed by
Uma, the Hindu Juno, to guard the entrance of her caverned retreat in
the [590] Caucasus, where she took refuge from the tyranny of the lord
of Kailasa (Olympus), whose throne is fixed amidst eternal snows on the
summit of this peak of the gigantic Caucasus (_Koh-khasa_).[4.22.20]

“Strife arose between Mahadeo and the faithful Parvati: she fled to the
mountains and took refuge in a cave. A crystal fountain tempted her to
bathe, but shame was awakened; she dreaded being seen. Rubbing her
frame, she made an image of man; with her nail she sprinkled it with the
water of life, and placed it as guardian at the entrance of the cave.”
Engrossed with the recollection of Parvati,[4.22.21] Siva went to
Karttikeya[4.22.22] for tidings of his mother, and together they
searched each valley and recess, and at length reached the spot where a
figure was placed at the entrance of a cavern. As the chief of the gods
prepared to explore this retreat, he was stopped by the Polia. In a rage
he struck off his head with his discus (_chakra_), and in the gloom
discovered the object of his search. Surprised and dismayed, she
demanded how he obtained ingress: “Was there no guardian at the
entrance?” The furious Siva replied that he had cut off his head. On
hearing this, the mountain-goddess was enraged, and weeping, exclaimed,
“You have destroyed my child.” The god, determined to recall him to
life, decollated a young elephant, replaced the head he had cut off, and
naming him Ganesa, decreed that in every resolve his name should be the
first invoked.

                  _Invocation of the Bard to Ganesa._

  “Oh, Ganesa! thou art a mighty lord; thy single tusk[4.22.23] is
  beautiful, and demands the tribute of praise from the Indra of
  song.[4.22.24] Thou art the chief of the human race; the destroyer of
  unclean spirits; the remover of fevers, whether daily or tertian. Thy
  bard sounds thy praise; let my work be accomplished!”

Thus Ganesa is the chief of the Di minores of the Hindu pantheon, as the
etymology of the word indicates,[4.22.25] and like Janus, was entrusted
with the gates of heaven [591]; while of his right to preside over peace
and war, the fable related affords abundant testimony. Ganesa is the
first invoked and propitiated[4.22.26] on every undertaking, whether
warlike or pacific. The warrior implores his counsel; the banker indites
his name at the commencement of every letter; the architect places his
image in the foundation of every edifice; and the figure of Ganesa is
either sculptured or painted at the door of every house as a protection
against evil. Our Hindu Janus is represented as four-armed, and holding
the disk (_chakra_), the war-shell, the club, and the lotos. Ganesa is
not, however, _bifrons_, like the Roman guardian of portals. In every
transaction he is _adi_, or the first, though the Hindu does not, like
the Roman, open the year with his name. I shall conclude with remarking
that one of the portes of every Hindu city is named the Ganesa Pol, as
well as some conspicuous entrance to the palace: thus Udaipur has its
Ganesa dwara, who also gives a name to the hall, the Ganesa deori; and
his shrine will be found on the ascent of every sacred mount, as at Abu,
where it is placed close to a fountain on the abrupt face about twelve
hundred feet from the base. There is likewise a hill sacred to him in
Mewar called Ganesa Gir, tantamount to the Mons Janiculum of the eternal
city. The companion of this divinity is a rat, who indirectly receives a
portion of homage, and with full as much right as the bird emblematic of

We have abandoned the temple of the warlike divinity (Devi), the sword
of Mars, and the triumphal _toran_, to invoke Ganesa. It will have been
remarked that the Rana aids himself to dismount by placing his hand on
one of the columns of the _toran_, an act which is pregnant with a
martial allusion, as are indeed the entire ceremonials of the “worship
of the sword.”

=Analogies to Western Customs. Oaths by the Sword.=—It might be deemed
folly to trace the rites and superstitions of so remote an age and
nation to Central Asia; but when we find the superstitions of the
Indo-Scythic Getae prevailing within the Indus, in Dacia, and on the
shores of the Baltic, we may assume their common origin; for although
the worship of arms has prevailed among all warlike tribes, there is a
peculiar respect paid to the sword amongst the Getic races. The Greeks
and Romans paid devotion to their arms, and swore by them. The Greeks
brought their habits from ancient Thrace, where the custom existed of
presenting as the greatest gift that peculiar kind of sword called
_acinaces_,[4.22.28] which we dare not derive from the Indo-Scythic or
Sanskrit _asi_, a [592] sword. When Xenophon,[4.22.29] on his retreat,
reached the court of Seuthes, he agreed to attach his corps to the
service of the Thracian. His officers on introduction, in the true
Oriental style, presented their _nazars_, or gifts of homage, excepting
Xenophon, who, deeming himself too exalted to make the common offering,
presented his sword, probably only to be touched in recognition of his
services being accepted. The most powerful oath of the Rajput, next to
his sovereign’s throne (_gaddi ka an_), is by his arms, _ya silah ka
an_, ‘by this weapon!’ as, suiting the action to the word, he puts his
hand on his dagger, never absent from his girdle. _Dhal, tarwar, ka an_,
‘by my sword and shield!’ The shield is deemed the only fit vessel or
salver on which to present gifts; and accordingly at a Rajput court,
shawls, brocades, scarfs, and jewels are always spread before the guest
on bucklers.[4.22.30]

In the Runic “incantation of Hervor,” daughter of Angantýr, at the tomb
of her father, she invokes the dead to deliver the enchanted brand
Tyrfing, or “Hjalmr’s bane,” which, according to Getic custom, was
buried in his tomb; she adjures him and his brothers “by all their arms,
their shields, etc.” It is depicted with great force, and, translated,
would deeply interest a Rajput, who might deem it the spell by which the
_Khanda_ of Hamira, which he annually worships, was obtained.


_Hervor_—“Awake, Angantýr! Hervor, the only daughter of thee and Suafu,
doth awaken thee. Give me out of the tomb the tempered sword which the
dwarfs made for Suafurlama.

“Can none of Eyvors’[4.22.31] sons speak with me out of the habitations
of the dead? Hervardur,[4.22.31] Hurvardur?”[4.22.31]

The tomb at length opens, the inside of which appears on fire, and a
reply is sung within:

_Angantýr_—“Daughter Hervor, full of spells to raise the dead, why dost
thou call so? I was not buried either by father or friends; two who
lived after me got Tyrfing, one of whom is now in possession thereof

_Hervor_—“The dead shall never enjoy rest unless Angantýr deliver me
Tyrfing, that cleaveth shields, and killed Hjalmr.”[4.22.32]

_Angantýr_—“Young maid, thou art of manlike courage, who dost rove by
night to tombs, with spear engraven with magic spells,[4.22.33] with
helm and coat of mail, before the door of our hall.”

_Hervor_—“It is not good for thee to hide it.”

_Angantýr_—“The death of Hjalmr[4.22.34] lies under my shoulders; it is
all wrapt up in fire: I know no maid that dares to take this sword in

_Hervor_—“I shall take in hand the sharp sword, if I may obtain it. I do
not think that fire will burn which plays about the site of deceased

_Angantýr_—“Take and keep Hjalmr’s bane: touch but the edges of it,
there is poison in them both;[4.22.36] it is a most cruel devourer of

=The Magic Sword of Mewār.=—Tradition has hallowed the two-edged sword
(_khanda_) of Mewar, by investing it with an origin as mysterious as
“the bane of Hjalmr.” It is supposed to be the enchanted weapon
fabricated by Viswakarma,[4.22.38] with which the Hindu Proserpine
girded the founder of the race, and led him forth to the conquest of
Chitor.[4.22.39] It remained the great heirloom of her princes till the
sack of Chitor by the Tatar Ala, when Rana Arsi and eleven of his brave
sons devoted themselves at the command of the guardian goddess of their
race, and their capital falling into the hands of the invader, the last
scion of Bappa became a fugitive amidst the mountains of the west. It
was then the Tatar inducted the Sonigira Maldeo [594], as his
lieutenant, into the capital of the Guhilots. The most celebrated of the
poetic chronicles of Mewar gives an elaborate description of the
subterranean palace in Chitor, in one of whose entrances the dreadful
sacrifice was perpetuated to save the honour of Padmini and the fair of
Chitor from the brutalized Tatars.[4.22.40] The curiosity of Maldeo was
more powerful than his superstition, and he determined to explore these
hidden abodes, though reputed to be guarded by the serpent genii
attendant on Nagnaicha, the ancient divinity of its Takshak
founders.[4.22.41] Whether it was through the identical caverned
passage, and over the ashes of those martyred Kaminis,[4.22.42] that he
made good his way into those rock-bound abodes, the legend says not; but

             In darkness, and with dangers compassed round,
             And solitude,

the intrepid Maldeo paused not until he had penetrated to the very
bounds of the abyss, where in a recess he beheld the snaky sorceress and
her sister crew seated round a cauldron, in which the materials of their
incantation were solving before a fire that served to illume this abode
of horror. As he paused, the reverberation of his footsteps caused the
infernal crew to look athwart the palpable obscure of their abode, and
beholding the audacious mortal, they demanded his intent. The valiant
Sonigira replied that he did not come as a spy,

                 With purpose to explore or to disturb
                 The secrets of their realm,

but in search of the enchanted brand of the founder of the Guhilots.
Soon they made proof of Maldeo’s hardihood. Uncovering the cauldron, he
beheld a sight most appalling: amidst divers fragments of animals was
the arm of an infant. A dish of this horrid repast was placed before
him, and a silent signal made for him to eat. He obeyed, and returned
the empty platter: it was proof sufficient of his worth to wear the
enchanted blade, which, drawn forth from its secret abode, was put into
the hand of Maldeo, who bowing, retired with the trophy [595].

Rana Hamira recovered this heirloom of his house, and with it the throne
of Chitor, by his marriage with the daughter of the Sonigira, as related
in the annals.[4.22.43] Another version says it was Hamira himself who
obtained the enchanted sword, by his incantations to Charani Devi, or
the goddess of the bards, whom he worshipped.

=The Birth of Kumāra.=—We shall conclude this account of the military
festival of Mewar with the birth of Kumara, the god of war, taken from
the most celebrated of their mythological poems, the Ramayana, probably
the most ancient book in the world.[4.22.44] “Mena, daughter of Meru,
became the spouse of Himavat, from whose union sprung the beauteous
Ganga, and her sister Uma. Ganga was sought in marriage by all the
celestials; while Uma, after a long life of austerity, was espoused by
Rudra.”[4.22.45] But neither sister was fortunate enough to have
offspring, until Ganga became pregnant by Hutasana (regent of fire), and
“Kumara, resplendent as the sun, illustrious as the moon, was produced
from the side of Ganga.” The gods, with Indra at their head, carried him
to the Krittikas[4.22.46] to be nursed, and he became their joint care.
“As he resembled the fire in brightness, he received the name of Skanda,
when the immortals, with Agni (fire) at their head, anointed him as
general of the armies of the gods.”[4.22.47]—“Thus (the bard Valmiki
speaks), oh! Rama, have I related the story of the production of Kumar.”

This is a very curious relic of ancient mythology, in which we may trace
the most material circumstances of the birth of the Roman divinity of
war. Kumara (Mars) was the son of Jahnavi (Juno), and born, like the
Romans, without sexual intercourse, but by the agency of Vulcan (regent
of fire). Kumara has the peacock (sacred to Juno likewise) as his
companion; and as the Grecian goddess is feigned to have her car drawn
by peacocks, so Kumara (the evil-striker)[4.22.48] has a peacock for his
steed [596]. Ganga, ‘the river goddess,’ has some of the attributes of
Pallas, being like the Athenian maid (Ganga never married) born from the
head of Jove. The bard of the silver age makes her fall from a glacier
of Kailasa (Olympus) on the head of the father of the gods, and remain
many years within the folds of his tiara (_jata_), until at length being
liberated, she was precipitated into the plains of Aryavarta. It was in
this escape that she burst her rocky barrier (the Himalaya), and on the
birth of Kumara exposed those veins of gold called _jambunadi_, in
colour like the jambu fruit, probably alluding to the veins of gold
discovered in the rocks of the Ganges in those distant ages.

=The Winter Season.=—The last day of the month Asoj ushers in the Hindu
winter (_sarad rit_). On this day, nothing but white vestments and
silver (_chandi_) ornaments are worn, in honour of the moon (Chandra),
who gives his[4.22.49] name to the

                         Pale and common drudge
                         ’Tween man and man.

This year there was an entire intercalary month: such are called
_Laund_. There is a procession of all the chiefs to the Chaugan; and on
their return, a full court is held in the great hall, which breaks up
with ‘obeisance to the lamp’ (_jot ka mujra_), whose light each
reverences; when the candles are lit at home, every Rajput, from the
prince to the owner of a “skin (_charsa_) of land,” seated on a white
linen cloth, should worship his tutelary divinity, and feed the priests
with sugar and milk.

=Karttika.=—This month is peculiarly sacred to Lakshmi, the goddess of
wealth, the Juno Moneta of the Romans. The 13th is called the Dhanteras,
or thirteenth [day] of wealth, when gold and silver coin are worshipped,
as the representatives of the goddess, by her votaries of all classes,
but especially by the mercantile [597]. On the 14th, all anoint with
oil, and make libations thereof to Yama, the judge of departed spirits.
Worship (_puja_) is performed to the lamp, which represents the god of
hell, and is thence called Yamadiwa, ‘the lamp of Pluto’; and on this
day partial illumination takes place throughout the city.

=The Diwāli, or Festival of Lamps.=—On the Amavas, or Ides of Karttik,
is one of the most brilliant fètes of Rajasthan, called the Diwali, when
every city, village, and encampment exhibits a blaze of splendour. The
potters’ wheels revolve for weeks before solely in the manufacture of
lamps (_diwa_), and from the palace to the peasant’s hut every one
supplies himself with them, in proportion to his means, and arranges
them according to his fancy. Stuffs, pieces of gold, and sweetmeats are
carried in trays and consecrated at the temple of Lakshmi, the goddess
of wealth, to whom the day is consecrated. The Rana on this occasion
honours his prime minister with his presence to dinner; and this chief
officer of the State, who is always of the mercantile caste, pours oil
into a terra-cotta lamp, which his sovereign holds; the same libation of
oil is permitted by each of the near relations of the minister. On this
day, it is incumbent upon every votary of Lakshmi to try the chance of
the dice, and from their success in the Diwali, the prince, the chief,
the merchant, and the artisan foretell the state of their coffers for
the ensuing year.

Lakshmi, though on this festival depicted under the type of riches, is
evidently the beneficent Annapurna in another garb, for the agricultural
community place a corn-measure filled with grain and adorned with
flowers as her representative; or, if they adorn her effigies, they are
those of Padma, the water-nymph, with a lotos in one hand, and the
_pasa_ (or fillet for the head) in the other. As Lakshmi was produced at
“the Churning of the Ocean,” and hence called one of the “fourteen
gems,” she is confounded with Rambha, chief of the Apsaras, the Venus of
the Hindus. Though both were created from the froth (_sara_) of the
waters (_ap_),[4.22.50] they are as distinct as the representations of
riches and beauty can be. Lakshmi became the wife of Vishnu, or
Kanhaiya, and is placed at the feet of his marine couch when he is
floating on the chaotic waters. As his consort, she merges into the
character of Sarasvati, the goddess of eloquence, and here we have the
combination of Minerva and Apollo. As of Minerva, the owl [598] is the
attendant of Lakshmi;[4.22.51] and when we reflect that the Egyptians,
who furnished the Grecian pantheon, held these solemn festivals, also
called “the feast of lamps,” in honour of Minerva at Sais, we may deduce
the origin of this grand Oriental festival from that common
mother-country in Central Asia, whence the Diwali radiated to remote
China, the Nile, the Ganges, and the shores of the Tigris; for the
Shab-i-barat of Islam is but “the feast of lamps” of the Rajputs. In all
these there is a mixture of the attributes of Ceres and Proserpine, of
Plutus and Pluto. Lakshmi partakes of the attributes of both the first,
while Kuvera,[4.22.52] who is conjoined with her, is Plutus: as Yama is
Pluto, the infernal judge. The consecrated lamps and the libations of
oil are all dedicated to him; and “torches and flaming brands are
likewise kindled and consecrated, to burn the bodies of kinsmen who may
be dead in battle in a foreign land, and light them through the shades
of death to the mansion of Yama.”[4.22.53]

=Festival of Yama.=—To the infernal god Yama, who is “the son of the
sun,” the second day following the Amavas, or Ides of Karttika, is also
sacred; it is called the Bhratri dvitiya, or ‘the brothers’ second,’
because the river-goddess Yamuna on this day entertained her brother
(_bhratri_) Yama, and is therefore consecrated to fraternal affection.
At the hour of curfew (_godhuli_),[4.22.54] when the cattle return from
the fields, the cow is worshipped, the herd having been previously
tended. From this ceremony no rank is exempted on the preceding day,
dedicated to Krishna: prince and peasant all become pastoral attendants
on the cow, as the form of Prithivi,[4.22.55] or the earth.

=The Annakūta Festival.=—The 1st (Sudi), or 16th of Karttika, is the
grand festival of Annakuta, sacred to the Hindu Ceres, which will be
described with its solemnities at Nathdwara. There is a State
procession, horse-races, and elephant-fights at the Chaugan; the evening
closes with a display of fireworks.

=The Jaljātra Festival.=—The 14th (Sudi), or 29th, is another solemn
festival in honour of Vishnu. It is called the Jaljatra, from being
performed on the water (_jal_). The Rana, chiefs, ministers, and
citizens go in procession to the lake, and adore the “spirit of the
waters,” on which floating lights are placed, and the whole surface is
illuminated by a grand display of pyrotechny. On this day “Vishnu rises
from his slumber of four [599] months”;[4.22.56] a figurative expression
to denote the sun’s emerging from the cloudy months of the periodical

=The Makara Sankrānti Festival.=—The next day (the Punim, or last day of
Karttika), being the Makara sankranti, or autumnal equinox, when the sun
enters the zodiacal sign Makara,[4.22.57] or Pisces, the Rana and chiefs
proceed in state to the Chaugan, and play at ball on horseback. The
entire last half of the month Karttika, from Amavas (the Ides) to the
Punim, is sacred to Vishnu; who is declared by the Puranas to represent
the sun, and whose worship, that of water, and the floating-lights
placed thereon—all objects emblematic of fecundity—carry us back to the
point whence we started—the adoration of the powers of nature: clearly
proving all mythology to be universally founded on an astronomical

=Mitra Saptami, Bhāskara Saptami Festivals.=—In the remaining months of
Aghan, or Margsir, and Pus, there are no festivals in which a state
procession takes place, though in each there are marked days, kept not
only by the Rajputs, but generally by the Hindu nation; especially that
on the 7th of Aghan, which is called Mitra Saptami, or 7th of Mithras,
and like the Bhaskara Saptami or the 7th of Magha, is sacred to the sun
as a form of Vishnu. On this seventh day occurred the descent of the
river-goddess (Ganga) from the foot of Vishnu; or the genius of
fertilization, typified under the form of the river-goddess, proceeding
from the sun, the vivifying principle, and impended over the head of
Iswara, the divinity presiding over generation, in imitation of which
his votary pours libations of water (if possible from the sacred river
Ganga) over his emblem, the lingam or phallus: a comparison which is
made by the bard Chand in an invocation to this god, for the sake of
contrasting his own inferiority “to the mighty bards of old.”

“The head of Is[4.22.58] is in the skies; on his crown falls the
ever-flowing stream (Ganga); but on his statue below, does not his
votary pour the fluid from his _patra_?”

=Phallicism.=—No satisfactory etymology has ever been assigned for the
phallic emblem of generation, adored by Egyptian, Greek, Roman, and even
by the Christian, which may be from the same primeval language that
formed the Sanskrit.

Phalisa is the ‘fructifier,’ from _phala_, ‘fruit,’ and _Isa_, ‘the
god.’[4.22.59] Thus the type of Osiris can have a definite
interpretation, still wanting to the lingam of Iswara [600]. Both
deities presided over the streams which fertilized the countries in
which they received divine honours: Osiris over the Nile, from ‘the
mountains of the moon,’ in Ethiopia,[4.22.60] Iswara over the
Indus[4.22.61] (also called the Nil), and the Ganges from Chandragiri,
‘the mountains of the moon,’ on a peak of whose glaciers he has his

=Siva and the Sun.=—Siva occasionally assumes the attributes of the
sun-god; they especially appertain to Vishnu, who alone is styled
“immortal, the one, creator, and uncreated”; and in whom centre all the
qualities (_gunan_), which have peopled the Hindu pantheon with their
ideal representatives. The bard Chand, who has embodied the theological
tenets of the Rajputs in his prefatory invocation to every divinity who
can aid his intent, apostrophizes Ganesa, and summons the goddess of
eloquence (Sarasvati) “to make his tongue her abode”; deprecates the
destroying power, “him whom wrath inhabits,” lest he should be cut off
ere his book was finished; and lauding distinctly each member of the
triad (_trimurti_), he finishes by declaring them one, and that “whoever
believes them separate, hell will be his portion.” Of this One the sun
is the great visible type, adored under a variety of names, as Surya,
Mitra, Bhaskar, Vivasvat, Vishnu, Karna, or Kana, likewise an Egyptian
epithet for the sun.[4.22.62]

The emblem of Vishnu is Garuda, or the eagle,[4.22.63] and the Sun-god
both of the Egyptians and Hindus is typified with the bird’s head. Aruna
(the dawn), brother of Garuda, is classically styled the charioteer of
Vishnu, whose two sons, Sampati and Jatayu, attempting in imitation of
their father to reach the sun, the wings of the former were burnt and he
fell to the earth: of this the Greeks may have made their fable of

=Festivals in Honour of Vishnu.=—In the chief zodiacal phenomena,
observation will discover that Vishnu is still the object of worship.
The Phuladola,[4.22.65] or Floralia, in the vernal equinox, is so called
from the image of Vishnu being carried in a _dola_, or ark, covered with
garlands of flowers (_phula_). Again, in the month of Asarh, the
commencement of [601] the periodical rains, which date from the summer
solstice, the image of Vishnu is carried on a car, and brought forth on
the first appearance of the moon, the 11th of which being the solstice,
is called “the night of the gods.” Then Vishnu reposes on his
serpent-couch until the cessation of the flood on the 11th of Bhadon,
when “he turns on his side.”[4.22.66]

The 4th is also dedicated to Vishnu under his infantine appellation Hari
(Ἥλιος), because when a child “he hid himself in the moon.” We must not
derogate from Sir W. Jones the merit of drawing attention to the analogy
between these Hindu festivals on the equinoxes, and the Egyptian, called
the entrance of Osiris into the moon, and his confinement in an ark. But
that distinguished writer merely gives the hint, which the learned
Bryant aids us to pursue, by bringing modern travellers to corroborate
the ancient authorities: the drawings of Pocock from the sun temple of
Luxor to illustrate Plutarch, Curtius, and Diodorus. Bryant comes to the
same conclusion with regard to Osiris enclosed in the ark, which we
adopt regarding Vishnu’s repose during the four months of inundation,
the period of fertilization. I have already, in the rites of Annapurna,
the Isis of the Egyptians, noticed the crescent form of the ark of
Osiris, as well as the ram’s-head ornaments indicative of the vernal
equinox, which the Egyptians called Phamenoth, being the birthday of
Osiris, or the sun; the Phag, or Phalgun month of the Hindus; the
Phagesia of the Greeks, sacred to Dionysus.[4.22.67]

=The Argonauts.=—The expedition of Argonauts in search of the golden
fleece is a version of the arkite worship of Osiris, the Dolayatra of
the Hindus: and Sanskrit etymology, applied to the vessel of the
Argonauts, will give the sun (_argha_) god’s (_natha_) entrance into the
sign of the Ram. The Tauric and Hydra foes, with which Jason had to
contend before he obtained the fleece of Aries, are the symbols of the
sun-god, both of the Ganges and the Nile; and this fable, which has
occupied almost every pen of antiquity, is clearly astronomical, as the
names alone of the Arghanath, sons of Apollo, Mars, Mercury, Sol, Arcus
or Argus,[4.22.68] Jupiter, Bacchus, etc., sufficiently testify, whose
voyage is entirely celestial.

=Egyptian Influence on Hindu Mythology.=—If it be destined that any
portion of the veil which covers these ancient mysteries [602],
connecting those of the Ganges with the Nile, shall be removed, it will
be from the interpretation of the expedition of Rama, hitherto deemed
almost as allegorical as that of the Arghanaths. I shall at once assume
an opinion I have long entertained, that the western coast of the Red
Sea was the Lanka of the memorable exploit in the history of the Hindus.
If Alexander from the mouths of the Indus ventured to navigate those
seas with his frail fleet of barks constructed in the Panjab, what might
we not expect from the resources of the King of Kosala, the descendant
of Sagara, emphatically called the sea-king, whose “60,000 sons” were so
many mariners, and who has left his name as a memorial of his marine
power at the island (_Sagar_) at the embouchure of the main arm of the
Ganges, and to the ocean itself, also called Sagara? If the embarkation
of Ramesa and his heroes for the redemption of Sita had been from the
Gulph of Cutch, the grand emporium from the earliest ages, the voyage of
Rama would have been but the prototype of that of the Macedonians; but
local tradition has sanctified Rameswaram, the southern part of the
peninsula, as the rendezvous of his armament. The currents in the
Straits of Manar, curiosity, or a wish to obtain auxiliaries from this
insular kingdom, may have prompted the visit to Ceylon; and hence the
vestiges there found of this event. But even from this “utmost isle,
Taprobane,” the voyage across the Erythrean Sea is only twenty-five
degrees of longitude, which with a flowing sail they would run down in
ten or twelve days. The only difficulty which occurs is in the
synchronical existence of Rama and the Pharaoh[4.22.69] of Moses, which
would tend to the opposite of my hypothesis, and show that India
received her Phallic rites, her architecture, and symbolic mythology
from the Nile, instead of planting them there.

“Est-ce l’Inde, la Phénicie, l’Éthiopie, la Chaldée, ou l’Égypte,
qui a vu naître ce culte? ou bien le type en a-t-il été fourni aux
habitans de ces contrées, par une nation plus ancienne encore?” asks
an ingenious but anonymous French author, on the origin of the
Phallic worship.[4.22.70] Ramesa, chief of the Suryas, or sun-born
race, was king of the city designated from his mother, Kausalya, of
which Ayodhya was the capital. His sons were Lava and Kusa, who
originated the races we may term the Lavites and Kushites, or
Kushwas of India.[4.22.71] Was then Kausalya [603] the mother of
Ramesa, a native of Aethiopia,[4.22.72] or Kusadwipa, ‘the land of
Cush’? Rama and Krishna are both painted blue (_nila_), holding the
lotus, emblematic of the Nile. Their names are often identified.
Ram-Krishna, the bird-headed divinity, is painted as the messenger
of each, and the historians of both were contemporaries. That both
were real princes there is no doubt, though Krishna assumed to be an
incarnation of Vishnu, as Rama was of the sun. Of Rama’s family was
Trisankha,[4.22.73] mother of the great apostle of Buddha, whose
symbol was the serpent; and the followers of Buddha assert that
Krishna and this apostle, whose statues are facsimiles of those of
Memnon, were cousins. Were the Hermetic creed and Phallic rites
therefore received from the Ethiopic Cush? Could emblematic relics
be discovered in the caves of the Troglodytes, who inhabited the
range of mountains on the Cushite shore of the Arabian straits, akin
to those of Ellora and Elephanta,[4.22.74] whose style discloses
physical, mythological, as well as architectural affinity to the
Egyptian, the question would at once be set at rest.

I have derived the Phallus from Phalisa, the chief fruit. The Greeks,
who either borrowed it from the Egyptians or had it from the same
source, typified the Fructifier by a pineapple, the form of which
resembles the Sitaphala,[4.22.75] or fruit of Sita, whose rape by Ravana
carried Rama from the Ganges over many countries ere he recovered
her.[4.22.76] In like manner Gauri, the Rajput Ceres, is typified under
the coco-nut, or sriphala,[4.22.77] the chief of fruit, or fruit sacred
to Sri, or Isa (Isis), whose other elegant emblem of abundance, the
kamakumbha, is drawn with branches of the palmyra,[4.22.78] or
coco-tree, gracefully pendent from the vase (_kumbha_).

The Sriphala[4.22.79] is accordingly presented to all the votaries of
Iswara and Isa on the conclusion of the spring-festival of Phalguna, the
Phagesia of the Greeks, the [604] Phamenoth of the Egyptian, and the
Saturnalia of antiquity; a rejoicing at the renovation of the powers of
nature; the empire of heat over cold—of light over darkness.[4.22.80]

The analogy between the goddess of the spring Saturnalia, Phalguni, and
the Phagesia of the Greeks, will excite surprise; the word is not
derived from (φαγεῖν) eating, with the Rajput votaries of Holika, as
with those of the Dionysia of the Greeks; but from _phalguni_,
compounded of _guna_, ‘quality, virtue, or characteristic,’ and _phala_,
‘fruit’; in short, the fructifier. From φαλλός,[4.22.81] to which there
is no definite meaning, the Egyptian had the festival Phallica, the
Holika of the Hindus. _Phula_ and _phala_, flower and fruit, are the
roots of all, Floralia and Phalaria, the Phallus of Osiris, the Thyrsus
of Bacchus, or Lingam of Iswara, symbolized by the _Sriphala_, or
_Ananas_, the ‘food of the gods,’[4.22.82] or the Sitaphala of the Helen
of Ayodhya.

From the existence of this worship in Congo at this day, the author
already quoted asks if it may not have originated in Ethiopia, “qui,
comme le témoignent plusieurs écrivains de l’antiquité, a fourni ses
dieux à l’Égypte.“ On the first of the five complementary days called
”ἠπαγόμεναι ἡμέραι” preceding New Year’s Day, the Egyptians celebrated
the birth of the sun-god Osiris, in a similar manner as the Hindus do
their solstitial festival, “the morning of the gods,” the Hiul of
Scandinavia; on which occasion, “on promenait en procession une figure
d’Osiris, dont le Phallus était triple”; a number, he adds, expressing
“la pluralité indéfinie.” The number three is sacred to Iswara, chief of
the Trimurti or Triad, whose statue adorns the junction (_sangam_) of
all triple streams; hence called Triveni, who is [605] Trinetra, or
‘three-eyed,’ and Tridanta, or ‘god of the trident’; Triloka, ‘god of
the triple abode, heaven, earth, and hell’; Tripura, of the triple city,
to whom the Tripoli or triple gates are sacred, and of which he has made
Ganesa the Janitor, or guardian. The grotesque figure placed by the
Hindus during the Saturnalia in the highways, and called Nathurama (the
god Rama), is the counterpart of the figure described by Plutarch as
representing Osiris, “ce soleil printanier,” in the Egyptian Saturnalia
or Phamenoth. Even Ramisa and Ravana may, like Osiris and Typhon, be
merely the ideal representatives of light and darkness; and the chaste
Sita, spouse of the Surya prince, the astronomical Virgo, only a
zodiacal sign.[4.22.83]

=Wide Extension of Hindu Mythology.=—That a system of Hinduism pervaded
the whole Babylonian and Assyrian empires, Scripture furnishes abundant
proofs, in the mention of the various types of the sun-god Balnath,
whose pillar adorned “every mount” and “every grove”; and to whose other
representative, the brazen calf (_nandi_), the 15th of each month
(_amavas_)[4.22.84] was especially sacred. It was not confined to these
celebrated regions of the East, but was disseminated throughout the
earth; because from the Aral to the Baltic, colonies were planted from
that central region,[4.22.85] the cradle of the Suryas and the Indus,
whose branches (_sakha_),[4.22.86] the Yavan, the Aswa, and the Meda,
were the progenitors of the Ionians, the Assyrians, and the
Medes;[4.22.87] while in later times, from the same teeming region, the
Galati and Getae,[4.22.88] the Kelts and Goths, carried modifications of
the system to the shores of Armorica and the Baltic, the cliffs of
Caledonia, and the remote isles of the German Ocean. The monumental
circles sacred to the sun-god Belenus at once existing in that central
region,[4.22.89] in India,[4.22.90] and throughout Europe, is
conclusive. The apotheosis of the patriarch Noah, whom the Hindu styles
Manu-Vaivaswata, ‘_the_ man, son of the sun,’ may have originated the
Dolayatra of the Hindus, the ark of Osiris [606], the ship of Isis
amongst the Suevi, in memory of “the forty days” noticed in the
traditions of every nation of the earth.

The time may be approaching when this worship in the East, like the
Egyptian, shall be only matter of tradition; although this is not likely
to be effected by such summary means as were adopted by Cambyses, who
slew the sacred Apis and whipped his priests, while their Greek and
Roman conquerors adopted and embellished the Pantheon of the
Nile.[4.22.91] But when Christianity reared her severe yet simple form,
the divinities of the Nile, the Pantheon of Rome, and the Acropolis of
Athens, could not abide her awful majesty. The temples of the
Alexandrian Serapis were levelled by Theophilus,[4.22.92] while that of
Osiris at Memphis became a church of Christ. “Muni de ses pouvoirs, et
escorté d’une foule de moines, il mit en fuite les prêtres, brisa les
idoles, démolit les temples, ou y établit des monastères.”[4.22.93] The
period for thus subverting idolatry is passed: the religion of Christ is
not of the sword, but one enjoining peace and goodwill on earth. But as
from him “to whom much is given,” much will be required, the good and
benevolent of the Hindu nations may have ulterior advantages over those
Pharisees who would make a monopoly even of the virtues; who “see the
mote in their neighbour’s eye, but cannot discern the beam in their
own.” While, therefore, we strive to impart a purer taste and better
faith, let us not imagine that the minds of those we would reform are
the seats of impurity, because, in accordance with an idolatry coeval
with the flood, they continue to worship mysteries opposed to our own
modes of thinking [607].


Footnote 4.22.1:

  Nauratri may be interpreted the nine days’ festival, or the ‘new
  night’ [?].

Footnote 4.22.2:

  “It was natural enough,” says Gibbon, “that the Scythians should adore
  with peculiar devotion the god of war; but as they were incapable of
  forming either an abstract idea, or a corporeal representation, they
  worshipped their tutelar deity under the symbol of an iron cimeter. If
  the rites of Scythia were practised on this solemn occasion,[4.22.2.A]
  a lofty altar, or rather pile of faggots, three hundred yards in
  length and in breadth, was raised in a spacious plain; and the sword
  of Mars was placed erect on the summit of this rustic altar, which was
  annually consecrated by the blood of sheep, horses, and of the
  hundredth captive” (Gibbon’s _Roman Empire_, ed. W. Smith, iv. 194

Footnote 4.22.2.A:

  Attila dictating the terms of peace with the envoys of Constantinople,
  at the city of Margus, in Upper Moesia.

Footnote 4.22.3:

  St. Palaye, _Memoirs of Ancient Chivalry_, p. 305.

Footnote 4.22.4:

  Raj Jogi is the chief of the ascetic warriors; the Mahants are
  commanders [the term being usually applied to the abbot of a
  monastery]. More will be said of this singular society when we discuss
  the religious institutions of Mewar.

Footnote 4.22.5:

  The god Krishna is called Kishan in the dialects.

Footnote 4.22.6:

  This is the _sthapana_ of the sword, literally its inauguration or
  induction, for the purposes of adoration.

Footnote 4.22.7:

  Tripolia, or triple portal.

Footnote 4.22.8:

  [The chief centres of worship of Harsiddh Māta are Gāndhari and
  Ujjain. It is said that her image stood on the sea-shore, and that she
  used to swallow all the vessels that passed by (R. E. Enthoven,
  _Folklore Notes Gujarāt_, 5; _BG_, ix. Part i. 226).]

Footnote 4.22.9:

  [Formerly an important personage, but his authority has now much
  decreased (_BG_, ix. Part i. 96).]

Footnote 4.22.10:

  On this day sons visit and pay adoration to their fathers. The diet is
  chiefly of vegetables and fruits. Brahmans with their unmarried
  daughters are feasted, and receive garments called _chunri_ from their
  chiefs. [This is a kind of cloth dyed by partly tying it in knots,
  which escape the action of the dye.]

Footnote 4.22.11:

  The Jogi’s _patra_ is not so revolting as that of their divinity Hara
  (the god of war), which is the human _cranium_; this is a hollow

Footnote 4.22.12:

  From _das_, the numeral _ten_; _the_ tenth. [It means ‘the feast that
  removes ten sins.’]

Footnote 4.22.13:

  In this ancient story we are made acquainted with the distant maritime
  wars which the princes of India carried on. Even supposing Ravana’s
  abode to be the insular Ceylon, he must have been a very powerful
  prince to equip an armament sufficiently numerous to carry off from
  the remote kingdom of Kosala the wife of the great king of the Suryas.
  It is most improbable that a petty king of Ceylon could wage equal war
  with a potentate who held the chief dominion of India; whose father,
  Dasaratha, drove his victorious car (_ratha_) over every region
  (_desa_), and whose intercourse with the countries beyond the
  Brahmaputra is distinctly to be traced in the Ramayana. [Dasaratha has
  no connexion with _desa_: the name means ‘he who possesses ten
  (_dasa_) chariots (_ratha_).’]

Footnote 4.22.14:

  [_Prosopis spicigera._]

Footnote 4.22.15:

  “A la première lune de chaque année, tous ces officiers, grands et
  petits, tenoient une assemblée générale à la cour du Tanjou, et y
  faisoient un sacrifice solennel: à la cinquième lune, ils
  s’assembloient à Lumtching, où ils sacrifioient au ciel, à la terre,
  aux esprits, et aux ancêtres. Il se tenoit encore une grande assemblée
  à Tai-lin dans l’automne, parce qu’alors les chevaux étoient plus
  gras, et on y faisoit en même-tems le dénombrement des hommes et des
  troupeaux; mais tous les jours le Tanjou sortoit de son camp, le matin
  pour adorer le soleil, et le soir la lune. Sa tente étoit placée à
  gauche, comme le côté le plus honorable chez ces peuples, et regardoit
  le couchant” (_Avant J.-C. 209; L’Histoire Générale des Huns_, vol. i.
  p. 24).

Footnote 4.22.16:

  [There is no Skt. word _pola_, ‘gate’; the Hindi _pol_, _paul_ is Skt.
  _pura dvāra_, ‘city entrance.’]

Footnote 4.22.17:

  [The words _pol_ and _pāl_ are not connected.]

Footnote 4.22.18:

  Hence may be found a good etymology of _janizary_, the guardian of the
  _serai_, a title left by the lords of Eastern Rome for the Porte.
  [Turkish _yeni-tsheri_, ‘new soldiery.’]

Footnote 4.22.19:

  In Sanskrit _gana_ (pronounced as _gun_), the _jinn_ of the Persians,
  transmuted to _genii_; here is another instance in point of the
  alternation of the initial, and softened by being transplanted from
  Indo-Scythia to Persia, as _Ganes_ was _Janus_ at Rome. [_Gana_ and
  _Jinn_, _Ganesa_ and _Janus_, have no connexion.

Footnote 4.22.20:

  The _Casius Mons_ of Ptolemy. [The derivation of the word Caucasus is

Footnote 4.22.21:

  Parvati, ‘the mountain goddess,’ was called Sati, or ‘the faithful,’
  in her former birth. She became the mother of Jahnavi, the river
  (_Ganga_) goddess.

Footnote 4.22.22:

  Karttikeya, the son of Siva and Parvati, the Jupiter and Juno of the
  Hindu theogony, has the leading of the armies of the gods, delegated
  by his father; and his mother has presented to him her peacock, which
  is the steed of this warlike divinity. He is called Karttikeya from
  being nursed by six females called Krittika, who inhabit six of the
  seven stars composing the constellation of the Wain, or Ursa Major.
  Thus the Hindu Mars, born of Jupiter and Juno, and nursed by Ursa
  Major, is, like all other theogonies, an astronomical allegory. There
  is another legend of the birth of Mars, which I shall give in the

Footnote 4.22.23:

  This elephant-headed divinity has but one tusk.

Footnote 4.22.24:

  The bard thus modestly designates himself.

Footnote 4.22.25:

  Chief (_isa_) of the gana (_genii_) or attendants on Siva.

Footnote 4.22.26:

  So he was at Rome, and his statue held the keys of heaven in his right
  hand, and, like Ganesa, a rod (the _ankus_) in his left.

Footnote 4.22.27:

  [The rat is the emblem of Ganesa probably because, like Apollo
  Smintheus, he protects the crops from vermin (Frazer, _The Golden
  Bough_, 3rd ed. Part v. vol. ii. 282 f.).]

Footnote 4.22.28:

  [Persian _āhanak_, ‘a sword of steel.’]

Footnote 4.22.29:

  [_Anabasis_, vii. 2.]

Footnote 4.22.30:

  The Gothic invaders of Italy inaugurated their monarch by placing him
  upon a shield, and elevating him on their shoulders in the midst of
  his army.

Footnote 4.22.31:

  All these proper names might have Oriental etymologies assigned to
  them; Eyvor-sail is the name of a celebrated Rajput hero of the Bhatti
  tribe, who were driven at an early period from the very heart of
  Scythia, and are of Yadu race.

Footnote 4.22.32:

  This word can have a Sanskrit derivation from _haya_, ‘a horse’;
  _marna_, ‘to strike or kill’; _Hjalmr_, ‘the horse-slayer.’ [These
  theories are of no value.]

Footnote 4.22.33:

  The custom of engraving incantations on weapons is also from the East,
  and thence adopted by the Muhammadan, as well as the use of
  phylacteries. The name of the goddess guarding the tribe is often
  inscribed, and I have had an entire copy of the Bhagavadgita taken
  from the turban of a Rajput killed in action: in like manner the
  Muhammadans place therein the Koran.

Footnote 4.22.34:

  The metaphorical name of the sword Tyrfing.

Footnote 4.22.35:

  I have already mentioned these fires (see p. 89), which the
  northern nations believed to issue from the tombs of their heroes, and
  which seemed to guard their ashes; them they called Hauga Elldr, or
  ‘the sepulchral fires,’ and they were supposed more especially to
  surround tombs which contained hidden treasures. These supernatural
  fires are termed Shihaba by the Rajputs. When the intrepid
  Scandinavian maiden observes that she is not afraid of the flame
  burning her, she is bolder than one of the boldest Rajputs, for
  Sri-kishan, who was shocked at the bare idea of going near these
  sepulchral lights, was one of the three non-commissioned officers who
  afterwards led thirty-two firelocks to the attack and defeat of 1500

Footnote 4.22.36:

  Like the Rajput Khanda, Tyrfing was double-edged; the poison of these
  edges is a truly Oriental idea.

Footnote 4.22.37:

  This poem is from the Hervarer Saga, an ancient Icelandic history. See
  Edda, vol. ii. p. 192.

Footnote 4.22.38:

  The Vulcan of the Hindus.

Footnote 4.22.39:

  For an account of the initiation to arms of Bappa, the founder of the
  Guhilots, see p. 264 [Vol. I.].

Footnote 4.22.40:

  See p. 311 [Vol. I.].

Footnote 4.22.41:

  The Mori prince, from whom Bappa took Chitor, was of the Tak or
  Takshak race [?], of whom Nagnaicha or Nagini Mata was the mother,
  represented as half woman and half serpent; the sister of the mother
  of the Scythic race, according to their legends; so that the deeper we
  dive into these traditions, the stronger reason we shall find to
  assign a Scythic origin to all these tribes. As Bappa, the founder of
  the Guhilots, retired into Scythia and left his heirs to rule in
  India, I shall find fault with no antiquary who will throw overboard
  all the connexion between Kanaksen, the founder of the Valabhi empire,
  and Sumitra, the last of Rama’s line. Many rites of the Rama’s house
  are decidedly Scythic.

Footnote 4.22.42:

  [Lovely maidens.]

Footnote 4.22.43:

  See p. 317 [Vol. I.].

Footnote 4.22.44:

  [“The kernel of the Rāmāyana was composed before 500 B.C., while the
  more recent portions was probably not added till the second century
  B.C., and later” (Macdonell, _Hist. Sanskrit Literature_, 309).]

Footnote 4.22.45:

  One of the names of the divinity of war, whose images are covered with
  vermilion in imitation of blood. (_Qy._ the German _roodur_,
  ‘red’)[596]. [Rudra, ‘the roarer,’ originally “god of storms.”]

Footnote 4.22.46:

  The Pleiades.

Footnote 4.22.47:

  The festival of the birth of this son of Ganga, or Jahnavi, is on the
  10th of Jeth. Sir W. Jones gives the following couplet from the
  Sancha: “On the 10th of Jyaishtha, on the bright half of the month, on
  the day of Mangala,[4.22.47.A] son of the earth, when the moon was in
  Hasta, this daughter of Jahnu brought from the rocks, and ploughed
  over the land inhabited by mortals.”

Footnote 4.22.47.A:

  Mangala is one of the names (and perhaps one of the oldest) of the
  Hindu Mars (Kumara), to whom the Wodens-dag of the Northmen, the Mardi
  of the French, the Dies Martis of the Romans, are alike sacred.
  Mangala also means ‘happy,’ the reverse of the origin of Mongol, said
  to mean ‘sad’ [‘brave’]. The juxtaposition of the Rajput and
  Scandinavian days of the week will show that they have the same


             Rajput               Scandinavian and Saxon.
             Suryavar             Sun-day.
             Som, or Induvar      Moon-day.
             Budhvar              Tuis-day.
             Mangalvar            Wodens-day.
             Brihaspativar[a]     Thors-day.
             Sukravar[b]          Frey-day.
             Sani, or  } -var     Satur-day[c]
             Sanichara }


  (_a_) Brihaspati, ‘he who rides on the bull’; the steed of the Rajput
  god of war [probably ‘lord of prayer,’ or ‘of increase,’ confounded in
  the original note with Vrishapati, ‘Lord of the bull,’ a title of

  (_b_) Sukra is a Cyclop, regent of the planet Venus.]

  (_c_) [See Max Müller, _Selected Essays_, 1881, ii. 460 ff.]]

Footnote 4.22.48:

  [Kumāra probably means ‘easily dying.’]

Footnote 4.22.49:

  It will be recollected that the moon with the Rajputs as with the
  Scandinavians is a male divinity. The Tatars, who also consider him a
  male divinity, pay him especial adoration in this autumnal month.

Footnote 4.22.50:

  [Apsaras means ‘going in the waters, or in the waters of the clouds.’]

Footnote 4.22.51:

  [The owl is a bird of ill omen, and does not seem to be associated
  with Lakshmi except in Bengal.]

Footnote 4.22.52:

  The Hindu god of riches.

Footnote 4.22.53:

  Yamala is the great god of the Finlanders (Clarke).

Footnote 4.22.54:

  From _go_, ‘a cow’ [_dhūli_, ‘the dust raised by them as they return
  to the stall’].F

Footnote 4.22.55:

  See anecdote in Chap. 21, which elucidates this practice of princes
  becoming herdsmen.

Footnote 4.22.56:

  Matsya Purana. [Vishnu is generally said to wake on the Deothān, 11th
  light half of Kārttik.]

Footnote 4.22.57:

  [Makara, a kind of shark or sea-monster, marks the 10th sign of the
  Zodiac, Capricorn.]

Footnote 4.22.58:

  Iswara, Isa, or as pronounced, Is.

Footnote 4.22.59:

  [Monier-Williams in his _Sanskrit Dict._ records no such form as
  _phalīsa_. φαλλός = Lat. _palus_, English _pole_, _pale_. The Author
  follows Wilford (_Asiatic Researches_, iii. 135 f.).]

Footnote 4.22.60:

  ‘The land of the sun’ (_aditya_). [This is impossible. The true
  derivation is unknown; to the Greeks the word meant ‘swarthy-faced.’]

Footnote 4.22.61:

  Ferishta calls the Indus the Nilab, or ‘blue waters’; it is also
  called Abusin, the ‘father of streams.’

Footnote 4.22.62:

  According to Diodorus Siculus. [Rudra-Siva has a benign side to his
  character, and may be associated with the Sun (R. G. Bhandarkar,
  _Vaisnavism, Saivism and Minor Religious Systems_, 105). But the
  Author, in his constant references to “Bāl”-Siva, has pressed this
  conception to an excessive length.]

Footnote 4.22.63:

  The vulture and crane, which soar high in the heavens, are also called
  _garuda_, and vulgarly _gidh_. The ibis is of the crane or heron kind.

Footnote 4.22.64:

  Phaeton was the son of Cephalus and Aurora. The former answers to the
  Hindu bird-headed messenger of the sun. Aruna is the Aurora of the
  Greeks, who with more taste have given the dawn a female character.

Footnote 4.22.65:

  Also called Dolayatra.

Footnote 4.22.66:

  Bhagavat and Matsya Puranas. See Sir W. Jones on the lunar year of the
  Hindus, _Asiatic Researches_, vol. iii. p. 286.

Footnote 4.22.67:

  [Mr. F. Ll. Griffith tells me that this comes from a French
  translation of Plutarch, _De Iside et Osiride_, cap. xii. (birth of
  Osiris on the first of the epagomenal days). This entry of Osiris into
  the moon seems to mean his conception rather than his birth. Φαμενώθ
  is the name of the seventh month, about 25th February.]

Footnote 4.22.68:

  _Arka_, ‘the sun,’ in Sanskrit. [This is due to Wilford (_Asiatic
  Researches_, iii. 134) and is, of course, impossible.]

Footnote 4.22.69:

  Pha-ra is but a title, ‘the king.’ [Egyptian Pro, ‘the great house.’]

Footnote 4.22.70:

  _Des divinités génératives: ou du culte du Phallus chez les anciens et
  les modernes_ (Paris).

Footnote 4.22.71:

  Of the former race the Ranas of Mewar, of the latter the princes of
  Narwar and Amber, are the representatives.

Footnote 4.22.72:

  Aethiopia, ‘the country of the sun’; from _Ait_, contraction of
  Aditya. Aegypt may have the same etymology, _Aitia_ [see p. 699

Footnote 4.22.73:

  [The Author may refer to Pārsvanātha, 23rd Jain Tīrthakara, whose
  symbol was his serpent; but his mother was Vāmadevi. Trisala was
  mother of the 24th Tīrthakara, Mahāvira or Vardhamāna, but his
  cognizance was a lion.]

Footnote 4.22.74:

  It is absurd to talk of these being modern; decipher the characters
  thereon, and then pronounce their antiquity. [Ellora, 5th to 9th or
  10th centuries A.D.; Elephanta, 8th to 10th (_IGI_, xii. 22, 4).]

Footnote 4.22.75:

  Vulg. _Sharifa_.

Footnote 4.22.76:

  Rama subjected her to the fiery ordeal, to discover whether her virtue
  had suffered while thus forcibly separated.

Footnote 4.22.77:

  Vulg. _Nariyal_.

Footnote 4.22.78:

  Palmyra is Sanskrit corrupted, and affords the etymology of Solomon’s
  city of the desert, Tadmor. The ﺙ p, by the retrenchment of a single
  diacritical point, becomes ت t; and the ل (_l_) and د (_d_) being
  permutable, Pal becomes Tad, or Tal—the Palmyra, which is the Mor, or
  chief of trees; hence Tadmor, from its date-trees [?].

Footnote 4.22.79:

  The Jayaphala, ‘the fruit of victory,’ is the nutmeg; or, as a native
  of Java, Javuphala, ‘fruit of Java,’ is most probably derived from
  Jayadiva, ‘the victorious isle.’ [The nutmeg is Jātiphala: Java is
  _yavadwīpa_, ‘island of barley.’]

Footnote 4.22.80:

  The Kamari of the Saura tribes, or sun-worshippers of Saurashtra,
  claims descent from the bird-god of Vishnu (who aided Rama[4.22.80.A]
  to the discovery of Sita), and the Makara[4.22.80.B] or crocodile, and
  date the monstrous conception from that event, and their original
  abode from Sankodra Bet, or island of Sankodra. Whether to the
  Dioscorides at the entrance of the Arabian Gulf this name was given,
  evidently corrupted from Sankhadwara to Socotra, we shall not stop to
  inquire. Like the isle in the entrance of the Gulf of Cutch, it is the
  _dwara_ or portal to the Sinus Arabicus, and the pearl-shell
  (_sankha_) there abounds. This tribe deduce their origin from Rama’s
  expedition, and allege that their Icthyiopic mother landed them where
  they still reside. Wild as is this fable, it adds support to this
  hypothesis. [The Sanskrit name of Bet Island (“Bate” in the text) is
  Sankhuddhāra, from the conch fishery. Socotra is Dwīpa Sukhadāra,
  ‘island of pleasure’ (not Sakhādāra, as in _EB_, xxv. 355) (Yule,
  _Marco Polo_, 1st ed. ii. 342).]

Footnote 4.22.80.A:

  Rama and Vishnu interchange characters.

Footnote 4.22.80.B:

  It is curious that the designation of the tribe Kamar is a
  transposition of Makar, for the final letter of each is mute.

Footnote 4.22.81:

  See Lempriere, arts. _Phagesia_ and _Phallica_. “L’Abbé Mignot pense
  que le _Phallus_ est originaire de l’Assyrie et de la Chaldée, et que
  c’est de ce pays que l’usage de consacrer ce symbole de la génération
  a passé en Égypte. Il croit, d’après le savant Le Clerc, que le nom de
  ce symbole est phénicien: qu’il dérive de _Phalou_ qui, dans cette
  langue, signifie une _chose secrète_ et _cachée_, et du verbe _phala_,
  qui veut dire _être tenu secret_.”[4.22.81.A]

Footnote 4.22.81.A:

  _Des divinités génératives._

Footnote 4.22.82:

  _Anna_, ‘food,’ and _asa_ or _isa_, ‘the god.’ [Ananas comes from
  Brazilian _Nana_ or _Nanas_ (Yule, _Hobson-Jobson_, 2nd ed. 25).]

Footnote 4.22.83:

  [It is unnecessary to discuss these theories, which are based on
  incorrect assumptions and obsolete etymologies.]

Footnote 4.22.84:

  The Hindus divide the month into two portions called _pakh_ or
  fortnights. The first is termed _badi_, reckoning from the 1st to the
  15th, which day of partition is called _amavas_, answering to the Ides
  of the Romans, and held by the Hindus as it was by the Jews in great
  sanctity. The last division is termed _sudi_, and they recommence with
  the initial numeral, thence to the 30th or completion, called _punim_;
  thus instead of the 16th, 17th, etc., of the month, they say _Sudi
  ekam_ (1st), _Sudi duj_ (3rd).

Footnote 4.22.85:

  Sogdiana and Transoxiana.

Footnote 4.22.86:

  Hence the word Saka [?].

Footnote 4.22.87:

  See Genealogical Table No. 2 for these names. The sons of the three
  Midas, pronounced Mede, founded kingdoms at the precise point of time,
  according to calculation from the number of kings, that Assyria was

Footnote 4.22.88:

  The former were more pastoral, and hence the origin of their name,
  corrupted to Keltoi. The Getae or Jats pursued the hunter’s
  occupation, living more by the chase, though these occupations are
  generally conjoined in the early stages of civilization.

Footnote 4.22.89:

  Rubruquis and other travellers.

Footnote 4.22.90:

  Colonel Mackenzie’s invaluable and gigantic collection.

Footnote 4.22.91:

  Isis and Osiris, Serapis and Canopus, Apis and Ibis, adopted by the
  Romans, whose temples and images, yet preserved, will allow full scope
  to the Hindu antiquary for analysis of both systems. The temple of
  Serapis at Pozzuoli is quite Hindu in its ground plan.

Footnote 4.22.92:

  In the reign of Theodosius.

Footnote 4.22.93:

  _Du Culte_, etc., etc., p. 47.


                               CHAPTER 23

=The Character of the Rājput. Influence of Custom.=—The manners of a
nation constitute the most interesting portion of its history, but a
thorough knowledge of them must be the fruit of long and attentive
observation: an axiom which applies to a people even less inaccessible
than the Rajputs. The importance and necessity of such an illustration
of the Rajput character, in a work like the present, call for and
sanction the attempt, however inadequate the means. Of what value to
mankind would be the interminable narrative of battles, were their moral
causes and results passed by unheeded? Although both the Persian and
Hindu annalists not unfrequently unite the characters of moralist and
historian, it is in a manner unsuitable to the subject, according to the
more refined taste of Europe. In the poetic annals of the Rajput, we see
him check his war-chariot, and when he should be levelling his javelin,
commence a discourse upon ethics; or when the battle is over, the Nestor
or Ulysses of the host converts his tent into a lyceum, and delivers
lectures on morals or manners. But the reflections which should follow,
and form the corollary to each action, are never given; and even if they
were, though we might comprehend the moral movements of a nation, we
should still be unable to catch the minute shades of character that
complete the picture of domestic life, and which are to be collected
from those familiar sentiments uttered in social intercourse, when the
mind unbends and nature throws aside the trammels of education and of
ceremony. Such a picture would represent the manners, which are
continually undergoing modifications, in contradistinction to the morals
of society; the latter, having a fixed creed for their basis, are
definite and unchangeable. The _chal_ of the Rajput, like the _mores_ of
the Romans, or _costumi_ of modern Italy, is significant alike of mental
and external habit. In the moral point of view it is the path chalked
out for him by the sages of antiquity [608]; in the personal, it is that
which custom has rendered immutable. _Kaisi buri chal men chalta_, ‘in
what a bad path does he march!’ says the moralist: _Bap, Dada ki chal
chhori_, ‘he abandons the usages of his ancestors,’ says the stickler
for custom, in Rajasthan.[4.23.1]

=Rājput Morals.=—The grand features of morality are few, and nearly the
same in every nation not positively barbarous. The principles contained
in the Decalogue form the basis of every code—of Manu and of Muhammad,
as well as of Moses. These are grand landmarks of the truth of divine
history; and are confirmed by the less important traits of personal
customs and religious rites, which nations the most remote from each
other continue to hold in common. The Koran we know to have been founded
on the Mosaic law; the Sastra of Manu, unconsciously, approaches still
more to the Jewish Scriptures in spirit and intention; and from its
pages might be formed a manual of moral instruction, which, if followed
by the disciples of the framer, might put more favoured societies to the

=Variety of Customs due to Environment.=—As it has been observed in a
former part of this work, the same religion governing all must tend to
produce a certain degree of mental uniformity. The shades of moral
distinction which separate these races are almost imperceptible: while
you cannot pass any grand natural barrier without having the
dissimilarity of customs and manners forced upon your observation.
Whoever passes from upland Mewar, the country of the Sesodias, into the
sandy flats of Marwar, the abode of the Rathors, would feel the force of
this remark. Innovations proceeding from external causes, such as
conquest by irreligious foes, and the birth of new sects and schisms,
operate important changes in manners and customs. We can only pretend,
however, to describe facts which are obvious, and those which history
discloses, whence some notions may be formed of the prevailing traits of
character in the Rajput; his ideas of virtue and vice, the social
intercourse and familiar courtesies of Rajasthan, and their recreations,
public and private.

“The manners of a people,” says the celebrated Goguet, “always bear a
proportion to the progress they have made in the arts and sciences.” If
by this test we trace the analogy between past and existing manners
amongst the Rajputs, we must conclude at once that they have undergone a
decided deterioration. Where can we look for sages like those whose
systems of philosophy were the [609] prototypes of those of Greece: to
whose works Plato, Thales, and Pythagoras were disciples? Where shall we
find the astronomers, whose knowledge of the planetary system yet
excites wonder in Europe, as well as the architects and sculptors, whose
works claim our admiration, and the musicians, “who could make the mind
oscillate from joy to sorrow, from tears to smiles, with the change of
modes and varied intonation.”[4.23.2] The manners of those days must
have corresponded with this advanced stage of refinement, as they must
have suffered from its decline: yet the homage paid by Asiatics to
precedent has preserved many relics of ancient customs, which have
survived the causes that produced them.


  Returned from Batlang in the Jumna.

[Illustration: DARAB KHAN, MEWATTI.]

[Illustration: BUDDUN SING, RAHTORE.]

[Illustration: SUDRAM GOSAEN.]


=Treatment of Women by the Rājputs.=—It is universally admitted that
there is no better criterion of the refinement of a nation than the
condition Of the fair sex therein. As it is elegantly expressed by Comte
Ségur, “Leur sort est une boussole sûre pour le premier regard d’un
étranger qui arrive dans un pays inconnu.”[4.23.3] Unfortunately, the
habitual seclusion of the higher classes of females in the East
contracts the sphere of observation in regard to their influence on
society; but, to borrow again from our ingenious author, “les hommes
font les lois, les femmes font les mœurs”; and their incarceration in
Rajasthan by no means lessens the application of the adage to that
country. Like the magnetic power, however latent, their attraction is
not the less certain. “C’est aux hommes à faire des grandes choses,
c’est aux femmes à les inspirer,” is a maxim to which every Rajput
cavalier would subscribe, with whom the age of chivalry is not fled,
though ages of oppression have passed over him. He knows there is no
retreat into which the report of a gallant action will not penetrate,
and set fair hearts in motion to be the object of his search. The bards,
those chroniclers of fame, like the Jongleurs of old, have everywhere
access, to the palace as to the hamlet; and a brilliant exploit travels
with all the rapidity of a comet, and clothed with the splendid
decorations of poetry, from the Indian desert to the valley of the
Jumna. If we cannot paint the Rajput dame as invested with all the
privileges which Ségur assigns to the first woman, “compagne de l’homme
et son égale, vivant par lui, pour lui, associée à son bonheur, à ses
plaisirs, à la puissance qu’il exerçait sur ce vaste univers,” she is
far removed from the condition which demands commiseration [610].

=The Seclusion of Women.=—Like the ancient German or Scandinavian, the
Rajput consults her in every transaction; from her ordinary actions he
draws the omen of success, and he appends to her name the epithet of
_devi_, or ‘godlike.’ The superficial observer, who applies his own
standard to the customs of all nations, laments with an affected
philanthropy the degraded condition of the Hindu female, in which
sentiment he would find her little disposed to join. He particularly
laments her want of liberty, and calls her seclusion imprisonment.
Although I cordially unite with Ségur, who is at issue with his
compatriot Montesquieu on this part of discipline, yet from the
knowledge I do possess of the freedom, the respect, the happiness, which
Rajput women enjoy, I am by no means inclined to deplore their state as
one of captivity. The author of the _Spirit of Laws_, with the views of
a closet philosopher, deems seclusion necessary from the irresistible
influence of climate on the passions; while the chivalrous Ségur, with
more knowledge of human nature, draws the very opposite conclusion,
asserting all restraints to be injurious to morals. Of one thing we are
certain, seclusion of females could only originate in a moderately
advanced stage of civilization. Amongst hunters, pastors, and
cultivators, the women were required to aid in all external pursuits, as
well as internal economy. The Jews secluded not their women, and the
well, where they assembled to draw water, was the place where marriages
were contracted, as with the lower classes in Rajputana. The inundations
of the Nile, each house of whose fertile valleys was isolated, is said
to have created habits of secluding women with the Egyptians; and this
argument might apply to the vast valleys of the Indus and Ganges first
inhabited, and which might have diffused example with the spread of
population. Assuredly, if India was colonized from the cradle of
nations, Central Asia, they did not thence bring these notions within
the Indus; for the Scythian women went to the opposite extreme, and were
polyandrists.[4.23.4] The desire of eradicating those impure habits,
described by Herodotus, that the slipper at the tent-door should no
longer be a sign, may have originated the opposite extreme in a life of
entire seclusion. Both polygamy and polyandry originated in a mistaken
view of the animal economy, and of the first great command to people the
earth: the one was general amongst all the nations [611] of antiquity;
the other rare, though to be found in Scythia, India, and even amongst
the Natchez, in the new world; but never with the Rajput, with whom
monogamy existed during the patriarchal ages of India, as amongst the
Egyptians.[4.23.5] Of all the nations of the world who have habituated
the female to a restricted intercourse with society, whether Grecian,
Roman, Egyptian, or Chinese, the Rajput has given least cause to provoke
the sentiment of pity; for if deference and respect be proofs of
civilization, Rajputana must be considered as redundant in evidence of
it. The uxoriousness of the Rajput might be appealed to as indicative of
the decay of national morals; “chez les barbares (says Ségur) les femmes
ne sont rien: les mœurs de ces peuples s’adoucissent-t’-elles, on
compte les femmes pour quelque chose: enfin, se corrompent-elles, les
femmes sont tout”; and whether from this decay, or the more probable and
amiable cause of seeking, in their society, consolation for the loss of
power and independence, the women are nearly everything with the Rajput.

It is scarcely fair to quote Manu as an authority for the proper
treatment of the fair sex, since many of his dicta by no means tend to
elevate their condition. In his lengthened catalogue of things pure and
impure he says, however, “The mouth of a woman is constantly
pure,”[4.23.6] and he ranks it with the running waters and the sunbeam;
he suggests that their names should be “agreeable, soft, clear,
captivating the fancy, auspicious, ending in long vowels, resembling
words of benediction.”[4.23.7]

“Where females are honoured” (says Manu), “there the deities are
pleased; but where dishonoured, there all religious rites become
useless”: and he declares, “that in whatever house a woman not duly
honoured pronounces an imprecation, that house, with all that belongs to
it, shall utterly perish.”[4.23.8] “Strike not, even with a blossom, a
wife guilty of a hundred faults,”[4.23.9] says another sage: a sentiment
so delicate, that Reginald de Born, the prince of troubadours, never
uttered any more refined.

However exalted the respect of the Rajput for the fair, he nevertheless
holds that

                       Nothing lovelier can be found
             In woman, than to study household good [612].

=The Chief of Sādri and his Wife.=—In the most tempestuous period of the
history of Mewar, when the Ranas broke asunder the bonds which united
them to the other chiefs of Rajasthan, and bestowed their daughters on
the foreign nobles incorporated with the higher class of their own kin,
the chief of Sadri, so often mentioned, had obtained a princess to wife.
There was a hazard to domestic happiness in such unequal alliance, which
the lord of Sadri soon experienced. To the courteous request,
“Ranawatji, fill me a cup of water,” he received a contemptuous refusal,
with the remark, that “The daughter of a hundred kings would not become
cup-bearer to the chieftain of Sadri.”—“Very well,” replied the plain
soldier, “you may return to your father’s house, if you can be of no use
in mine.” A messenger was instantly sent to the court, and the message,
with every aggravation, was made known; and she followed on the heels of
her messenger. A summons soon arrived for the Sadri chief to attend his
sovereign at the capital. He obeyed; and arrived in time to give his
explanation just as the Rana was proceeding to hold a full court. As
usual, the Sadri chief was placed on his sovereign’s right hand, and
when the court broke up, the heir-apparent of Mewar, at a preconcerted
sign, stood at the edge of the carpet, performing the menial office of
holding the slippers of the chief. Shocked at such a mark of extreme
respect, he stammered forth some words of homage, his unworthiness,
etc.; to which the Rana replied, “As my son-in-law, no distinction too
great can be conferred: take home your wife, she will never again refuse
you a cup of water” [613].[4.23.10]

Could authority deemed divine ensure obedience to what is considered a
virtue in all ages and countries, the conjugal duties of the Rajputs are
comprehended in the following simple text: “Let mutual fidelity continue
to death; this, in few words, may be considered as the supreme law
between husband and wife.”[4.23.11]

=Devotion of Rājput Women.=—That this law governed the Rajputs in past
ages, as well as the present, in as great a degree as in other stages of
society and other countries, we cannot doubt. Nor will the annals of any
nation afford more numerous or more sublime instances of female
devotion, than those of the Rajputs; and such would never have been
recorded, were not the incentive likely to be revered and followed. How
easy would it be to cite examples for every passion which can actuate
the human mind! Do we desire to see a model of unbounded devotion,
resignation, and love, let us take the picture of Sita, as painted by
the Milton of their silver age, than which nothing more beautiful or
sentimental may be culled even from Paradise Lost. Rama was about to
abandon his faithful wife for the purpose of becoming a Vana-prastha or
hermit, when she thus pours out her ardent desire to partake of his

       A woman’s bliss is found, not in the smile
       Of father, mother, friend, nor in herself:
       Her husband is her only portion here,
       Her heaven hereafter. If thou indeed
       Depart this day into the forest drear,
       I will precede, and smooth the thorny way.

                               A gay recluse
       On thee attending, happy shall I feel
       Within the honey-scented grove to roam,
       For thou e’en here canst nourish and protect;
       And therefore other friend I cannot need.
       To-day most surely with thee will I go,
       And thus resolved, I must not be deny’d.
       Roots and wild fruit shall be my constant food;
       Nor will I near thee add unto thy cares,
       Nor lag behind, nor forest-food refuse,
       But fearless traverse every hill and dale.

       Thus could I sweetly pass a thousand years;
       But without thee e’en heaven would lose its charms [614].

       Pleased to embrace thy feet, I will reside
       In the rough forest as my father’s house.
       Void of all other wish, supremely thine,
       Permit me this request—I will not grieve,
       I will not burden thee—refuse me not.
       But shouldst thou, Raghuvu, this prayer deny
       Know, I resolve on death.

 _Vide_ Ward, _On the History, Literature, and Mythology of the Hindus_,
 ed. 1815, ii. p. 308 ff. [Cp. Manu, vi. 2 ff.]

The publication of Mr. Wilson’s specimens of the Hindu drama has put the
English public in possession of very striking features of ancient Hindu
manners, amongst which conjugal fidelity and affection stand eminently
conspicuous. The Uttara Rama Charitra, the Vikrama and Urvasi, and the
Mudra Rakshasa, contain many instances in point. In the latter piece
occurs an example, in comparatively humble life, of the strong affection
of a Hindu wife. Chandana Das, like Antonio in the _Merchant of Venice_,
is doomed to die, to save his friend. His wife follows him to the scene
of execution, with their only child, and the succeeding dialogue ensues:

     _Chand._   Withdraw, my love, and lead our boy along.

     _Wife._    Forgive me, husband,—to another world

                Thy steps are bound, and not to foreign realms,

                Whence in due time thou homeward wilt return;

                No common farewell our leave-taking now

                Admits, nor must the partner of thy fate

                Leave thee to trace thy solitary way.

     _Chand._   What dost thou mean?

     _Wife._    To follow thee in death.

     _Chand._   Think not of this—our boy’s yet tender years

                Demand affectionate and guardian care.

     _Wife._    I leave him to our household gods, nor fear

                They will desert his youth:—come, my dear boy,

                And bid thy sire a long and last farewell.

=The Tale of Dewaldai.=—The annals of no nation on earth record a more
ennobling or more magnanimous instance of female loyalty than that
exemplified by Dewaldai, mother of the Bannaphar brothers, which will at
once illustrate the manners of the Rajput fair, and their estimation and
influence in society.

The last Hindu emperor of Delhi, the chivalrous Prithiraj of the Chauhan
race, had abducted the daughter of the prince of Sameta. Some of the
wounded who had covered his retreat were assailed and put to death by
Parmal, the Chandel prince of Mahoba.[4.23.12] In order to avenge this
insult, the emperor had no sooner conveyed his bride to Delhi than he
invaded the territory of the Chandel, whose troops were cut to pieces at
Sirswa,[4.23.13] the advanced post of his kingdom. While [615] pursuing
his success, the Chandel called a council, and by the advice of his
queen Malandevi demanded a truce of his adversary, on the plea of the
absence of his chieftains Alha and Udala. The brother of the bard of
Mahoba was the envoy, who found the Chauhan ready to cross the Pahuj. He
presented his gifts, and adjured him, “as a true Rajput, not to take
them at such disadvantage.” The gifts were accepted, and the Chauhan
pledged himself, “albeit his warriors were eager for the fight,” to
grant the truce demanded; and having dismissed the herald, he inquired
of his own bard, the prophetic Chand, the cause of the disaffection
which led to the banishment of the Bannaphar; to which he thus replies:
“Jasraj was the leader of the armies of Mahoba when his sovereign was
defeated and put to flight by the wild race of Gonds; Jasraj repulsed
the foe, captured Garha their capital, and laid his head at his
sovereign’s feet. Parmal returning with victory to Mahoba, in gratitude
for his service, embraced the sons of Jasraj, and placed them in his
honours and lands, while Malandevi the queen made no distinction between
them and her son.” The fief of the young Bannaphar[4.23.14] chieftains
was at the celebrated fortress Kalanjar, where their sovereign happening
to see a fine mare belonging to Alha, desired to possess her, and being
refused, so far forgot past services as to compel them to abandon the
country. On retiring they fired the estates of the Parihara chief who
had instigated their disgrace. With their mother and families they
repaired to Kanauj, whose monarch received them with open arms,
assigning lands for their maintenance. Having thus premised the cause of
banishment, Chand conducts us to Kanauj, at the moment when Jagnakh the
bard was addressing the exiles on the dangers of Mahoba.

=War with Prithirāj.=—“The Chauhan is encamped on the plains of Mahoba;
Narsingh and Birsingh have fallen, Sirswa is given to the flames, and
the kingdom of Parmal laid waste by the Chauhan. For one month a truce
has been obtained: while to you I am sent for aid in his griefs. Listen,
O sons of Bannaphar; sad have been the days of Malandevi since you left
Mahoba! Oft she looks towards Kanauj; and while she recalls you to mind,
tears gush from her eyes and she exclaims, ‘The fame of the Chandel is
departing’; but when gone, O sons of Jasraj, great will be your
self-accusing sorrow: yet, think of Mahoba.”

“Destruction to Mahoba! Annihilation to the Chandel who, without fault
[616], expelled us our home: in whose service fell our father, by whom
his kingdom was extended. Send the slanderous Parihara—let him lead your
armies against the heroes of Delhi. Our heads were the pillars of
Mahoba; by us were the Gonds expelled, and their strongholds Deogarh and
Chandbari added to his sway. We maintained the field against the Jadon,
sacked Hindaun,[4.23.15] and planted his standard on the plains of
Katehr.[4.23.16] It was I (continued Alha) who stopped the sword of the
conquering Kachhwaha[4.23.17]—The amirs of the Sultan fled before us.—At
Gaya we were victorious, and added Rewa[4.23.18] to his kingdom.
Antarved[4.23.19] I gave to the flames, and levelled to the ground the
towns of Mewat.[4.23.20] From ten princes did Jasraj bring spoil to
Mahoba. This have we done; and the reward is exile from our home! Seven
times have I received wounds in his service, and since my father’s death
gained forty battles; and from seven has Udala conveyed the record of
victory[4.23.21] to Parmal. Thrice my death seemed inevitable. The
honour of his house I have upheld—yet exile is my reward!”

The bard replies—“The father of Parmal left him when a child to the care
of Jasraj. Your father was in lieu of his own; the son should not
abandon him when misfortune makes him call on you. The Rajput who
abandons his sovereign in distress will be plunged into hell. Then place
on your head the loyalty of your father. Can you desire to remain at
Kanauj while he is in trouble, who expended thousands in rejoicings for
your birth? Malandevi (the queen), who loves you as her own, presses
your return. She bids me demand of Dewaldai fulfilment of the
oft-repeated vow, that your life and Mahoba, when endangered, were
inseparable. The breaker of vows, despised on earth, will be plunged
into hell, there to remain while sun and moon endure.”

Dewaldai heard the message of the queen. “Let us fly to Mahoba,” she
[617] exclaimed. Alha was silent, while Udala said aloud, “May evil
spirits seize upon Mahoba!—Can we forget the day when, in distress, he
drove us forth?—Return to Mahoba—let it stand or fall, it is the same to
me; Kanauj is henceforth my home.”

“Would that the gods had made me barren,” said Dewaldai, “that I had
never borne sons who thus abandon the paths of the Rajput, and refuse to
succour their prince in danger!” Her heart bursting with grief, and her
eyes raised to heaven, she continued: “Was it for this, O universal
lord, thou mad’st me feel a mother’s pangs for these destroyers of
Bannaphar’s fame? Unworthy offspring! the heart of the true Rajput
dances with joy at the mere name of strife—but ye, degenerate, cannot be
the sons of Jasraj—some carl must have stolen to my embrace, and from
such ye must be sprung.” The young chiefs arose, their faces withered in
sadness. “When we perish in defence of Mahoba, and covered with wounds,
perform deeds that will leave a deathless name; when our heads roll in
the field—when we embrace the valiant in fight, and treading in the
footsteps of the brave, make resplendent the blood of both lines, even
in the presence of the heroes of the Chauhan, then will our mother

The envoy having, by this loyal appeal of Dewaldai, attained the object
of his mission, the brothers repair to the monarch of Kanauj,[4.23.22]
in order to ask permission to return to Mahoba; this is granted, and
they are dismissed with magnificent gifts, in which the bardic herald
participated;[4.23.23] and the parting valediction was “preserve the
faith of the Rajputs.” The omens during the march were of the worst
kind: as Jagnakh expounded them, Alha with a smile replied, “O bard,
though thou canst dive into the dark recesses of futurity, to the brave
all omens are happy,[4.23.24] even though our heroes shall fall, and the
fame of the Chandel must depart; thus in secret does my soul assure me.”
The saras[4.23.25] was alone on the right—the eagle as he flew dropped
his prey—the chakwa[4.23.26] “separated from his mate—drops fell from
the eyes of the warlike steed—the siyal[4.23.27] sent forth sounds of
lamentation; spots were seen on the disc of the sun” [618]. The
countenance of Lakhan fell;[4.23.28] these portents filled his soul with
dismay: but Alha said, “though these omens bode death, yet death to the
valiant, to the pure in faith, is an object of desire not of sorrow. The
path of the Rajput is beset with difficulties, rugged, and filled with
thorns; but he regards it not, so it but conducts to battle.”—“To carry
joy to Parmala alone occupied their thoughts: the steeds bounded over
the plain like the swift-footed deer.” The brothers, ere they reached
Mahoba, halted to put on the saffron robe, the sign of “no quarter” with
the Rajput warrior. The intelligence of their approach filled the
Chandela prince with joy, who advanced to embrace his defenders, and
conduct them to Mahoba; while the queen Malandevi came to greet
Dewaldai, who with the herald bard paid homage, and returned with the
queen to the city. Rich gifts were presented, gems resplendent with
light. The queen sent for Alha, and extending her hands over his head,
bestowed the _asis_[4.23.29] (blessing) as kneeling he swore his head
was with Mahoba, and then waved a vessel filled with pearls over his
head, which were distributed to his followers.[4.23.30]

The bardic herald was rewarded with four villages. We are then
introduced to the Chauhan camp and council, where Chand the bard is
expatiating on the return of the Bannaphars with the succours of Kanauj.
He recommends his sovereign to send a herald to the Chandel to announce
the expiration of the truce, and requiring him to meet him in the field,
or abandon Mahoba. According to the bard’s advice, a dispatch was
transmitted to Parmal, in which the cause of war was recapitulated—the
murder of the wounded; and stating that, according to Rajput faith, he
had granted seven days beyond the time demanded, “and although so many
days had passed since succour had arrived from Kanauj, the lion-horn had
not yet sounded (_singhnad_)”: adding, “if he abandon all desire of
combat, let him proclaim his vassalage to Delhi, and abandon Mahoba.”

Parmal received the hostile message in despair; but calling his warriors
around him, he replied to the herald of the Chauhan, that “on the day of
the sun, the first of the month, he would join him in strife” [619].

“On the day sacred to Sukra (Friday), Prithiraj sounded the shell, while
the drums thrice struck proclaimed the truce concluded.[4.23.31] The
standard was brought forth, around which the warriors gathered; the cup
circulated, the prospect of battle filled their souls with joy. They
anointed their bodies with fragrant oils, while the celestial Apsaras
with ambrosial oils and heavenly perfumes anointed their silver forms,
tinged their eyelids, and prepared for the reception of heroes.[4.23.32]
The sound of the war-shell reached Kailas; the abstraction of Iswara was
at an end—joy seized his soul at the prospect of completing his chaplet
of skulls (_mundamala_). The Yoginis danced with joy, their faces
sparkled with delight, as they seized their vessels to drink the blood
of the slain. The devourers of flesh, the Palankashas, sung songs of
triumph at the game of battle between the Chauhan and Chandel.”

In another measure, the bard proceeds to contrast the occupations of his
heroes and the celestials preparatory to the combat, which descriptions
are termed _rupaka_. “The heroes gird on their armour, while the
heavenly fair deck their persons. They place on their heads the helm
crowned with the war-bell (_viragantha_), these adjust the corset; they
draw the girths of the war-steed, the fair of the world of bliss bind
the anklet of bells; nets of steel defend the turban’s fold, they braid
their hair with golden flowers and gems; the warrior polishes his
falchion—the fair tints the eyelid with _anjan_;[4.23.33] the hero
points his dagger, the fair paints a heart on her forehead; he braces on
his ample buckler—she places the resplendent orb in her ear; he binds
his arms with a gauntlet of brass—she stains her hands with the henna.
The hero decorates his hand with the tiger-claw[4.23.34]—the Apsaras
ornaments with rings and golden bracelets; the warrior shakes the
ponderous lance—the heavenly fair the garland of love[4.23.35] to
decorate those who fall in the fight; she binds on a necklace of pearls,
he a _mala_ of the tulasi.[4.23.36] The warrior strings his bow—the fair
assume their killing [620] glances. Once more the heroes look to their
girths, while the celestial fair prepare their cars.”

After the bard has finished his _rupaka_, he exclaims, “Thus says Chand,
the lord of verse; with my own eyes have I seen what I describe.” It is
important to remark, that the national faith of the Rajput never
questions the prophetic power of their chief bard, whom they call
Trikala, or cognoscent of the past, the present, and the future—a
character which the bard has enjoyed in all ages and climes; but Chand
was the last whom they admitted to possess supernatural vision.

We must now return to Mahoba, where a grand council had assembled at a
final deliberation; at which, shaded by screens, the mother of the
Bannaphars, and the queen Malandevi, were present. The latter thus opens
the debate: “O mother of Alha, how may we succeed against the lord of
the world?[4.23.37] If defeated, lost is Mahoba; if we pay tribute, we
are loaded with shame.” Dewaldai recommends hearing _seriatim_ the
opinions of the chieftains, when Alha thus speaks: “Listen, O mother, to
your son; he alone is of pure lineage who, placing loyalty on his head,
abandons all thoughts of self, and lays down his life for his prince; my
thoughts are only for Parmal. If she lives she will show herself a
woman, or emanation of Parvati.[4.23.38] The warriors of Sambhar shall
be cut in pieces. I will so illustrate the blood of my fathers, that my
fame shall last for ever. My son Indal, O prince! I bequeath to you, and
the fame of Dewaldai is in your keeping.”

The queen thus replies: “The warriors of the Chauhan are fierce as they
are numerous; pay tribute, and save Mahoba.” The soul of Udala inflamed,
and turning to the queen, “Why thought you not thus when you slew the
defenceless? but then I was unheard. Whence now your wisdom? thrice I
beseeched you to pardon. Nevertheless, Mahoba is safe while life remains
in me, and in your cause, O Parmal! we shall espouse celestial brides.”

“Well have you spoken, my son,” said Dewaldai, “nothing now remains but
to make thy parent’s milk resplendent by thy deeds. The call of the
peasant driven [621] from his home meets the ear, and while we
deliberate, our villages are given to the flames.” But Parmal replied:
“Saturn[4.23.39] rules the day, to-morrow we shall meet the foe.” With
indignation Alha turned to the king: “He who can look tamely on while
the smoke ascends from his ruined towns, his fields laid waste, can be
no Rajput—he who succumbs to fear when his country is invaded, his body
will be plunged into the hell of hells, his soul a wanderer in the world
of spirits for sixty thousand years; but the warrior who performs his
duty will be received into the mansion of the sun, and his deeds will
last for ever.”

But cowardice and cruelty always accompany each other, nor could all the
speeches of the brothers “screw his courage to the sticking place.”
Parmal went to his queen, and gave fresh vent to his lamentation. She
upbraided his unmanly spirit, and bid him head his troops and go forth
to the fight. The heroes embraced their wives for the last time, and
with the dawn performed their pious rites. The Bannaphar offered
oblations to the nine planets, and having adored the image of his
tutelary god, he again put the chain round his neck;[4.23.40] then
calling his son Indal, and Udala his brother, he once more poured forth
his vows to the universal mother “that he would illustrate the name of
Jasraj, and evince the pure blood derived from Dewaldai, whene’er he met
the foe.”—“Nobly have you resolved,” said Udala, “and shall not my
_kirwan_[4.23.41] also dazzle the eyes of Sambhar’s lord? shall he not
retire from before me?”—“Farewell, my children,” said Dewaldai, “be true
to your salt, and should you lose your heads for your prince, doubt not
you will obtain the celestial crown.” Having ceased, the wives of both
exclaimed, “What virtuous wife survives her lord? for thus says
Gauriji,[4.23.42] ‘the woman, who survives her husband who falls in the
field of battle, will never obtain bliss, but wander a discontented
ghost in the region of unhallowed spirits.’”

This is sufficient to exhibit the supreme influence of women, not only
on, but also in society.

The extract is taken from the Bardic historian, when Hindu customs were
pure, and the Chauhan was paramount sovereign of India. It is worth
while to compare it with another written six centuries after the
conquest by the Muhammadans; although six dynasties—namely, Ghazni,
Ghor, Khilji [622], Sayyid, Lodi, and Mogul, numbering more than thirty
kings, had intervened, yet the same uncontrollable spirit was in full
force, unchangeable even in misfortune. Both Hindu and Persian
historians expatiate with delight on the anecdote; but we prefer the
narrative of the ingenuous Bernier, under whose eye the incident

=Jaswant Singh and his Wife.=—In the civil war for empire amongst the
sons of Shah Jahan, when Aurangzeb opened his career by the deposal of
his father and the murder of his brothers, the Rajputs, faithful to the
emperor, determined to oppose him. Under the intrepid Rathor Jaswant
Singh, thirty thousand Rajputs, chiefly of that clan, advanced to the
Nerbudda, and with a magnanimity amounting to imprudence, they permitted
the junction of Murad with Aurangzeb, who, under cover of artillery
served by Frenchmen, crossed the river almost unopposed. Next morning
the action commenced, which continued throughout the day. The Rajputs
behaved with their usual bravery; but were surrounded on all sides, and
by sunset left ten thousand dead on the field.[4.23.43] The Maharaja
retreated to his own country, but his wife, a daughter of the Rana of
Udaipur, “disdained (says Ferishta) to receive her lord, and shut the
gates of the castle.”

Bernier, who was present, says, “I cannot forbear to relate the fierce
reception which the daughter of the Rana gave to her husband Jeswunt
Singh [Jessom Seingue], after his defeat and flight. When she heard he
was nigh, and had understood what had passed in the battle; that he had
fought with all possible courage; that he had but four or five hundred
men left; and at last, no longer able to resist the enemy, had been
forced to retreat; instead of sending some one to condole him in his
misfortunes, she commanded in a dry mood to shut the gates of the
castle, and not to let this infamous man enter; that he was not her
husband; that the son-in-law of the great Rana could not have so mean a
soul; that he was to remember, that being grafted into so illustrious a
house, he was to imitate its virtue; in a word, he was to vanquish, or
to die. A moment after, she was of another humour; she commands a pile
of wood to be laid, that she might burn herself; that they abused her;
that her husband must needs be dead; that it could not be otherwise. And
a little while after, she was seen to change countenance, to [623] fall
into a passion, and break into a thousand reproaches against him. In
short, she remained thus transported eight or nine days, without being
able to resolve to see her husband, till at last her mother coming,
brought her in time to herself, composed by assuring her that as soon as
the Raja had but refreshed himself he would raise another army to fight
Aurangzeb, and repair his honour. By which story one may see,” says
Bernier, “a pattern of the courage of the women in that country”; and he
adds this philosophical corollary on this and the custom of satis, which
he had witnessed: “There is nothing which opinion, prepossession,
custom, hope, and the point of honour, may not make men do or

=The Tale of Sanjogta.=—The romantic history of the Chauhan emperor of
Delhi abounds in sketches of female character; and in the story of his
carrying off Sanjogta, the princess of Kanauj, we have not only the
individual portrait of the Helen of her country, but in it a faithful
picture of the sex. We see her, from the moment when, rejecting the
assembled princes, she threw the “garland of marriage” round the neck of
her hero, the Chauhan, abandon herself to all the influences of
passion—mix in a combat of five days’ continuance against her father’s
array, witness his overthrow, and the carnage of both armies, and
subsequently, by her seductive charms, lulling her lover into a neglect
of every princely duty. Yet when the foes of his glory and power invade
India, we see the enchantress at once start from her trance of pleasure,
and exchanging the softer for the sterner passions, in accents not less
strong because mingled with deep affection, she conjures him, while
arming him for the battle, to die for his fame, declaring that she will
join him in “the mansions of the sun.” Though it is difficult to
extract, in passages sufficiently condensed, what may convey a just idea
of this heroine, we shall attempt it in the bard’s own language,
rendered into prose. He announces the tidings of invasion by the medium
of a dream, which the Chauhan thus relates:

“‘This night, while in the arms of sleep, a fair, beautiful as Rambha,
rudely seized my arm; then she assailed you, and while you were
struggling, a mighty elephant,[4.23.45] infuriated, and hideous as a
demon, bore down upon me. Sleep fled—nor Rambha nor demon remained—but
my heart was panting, and [624] my quivering lips muttering _Har!
Har!_[4.23.46] What is decreed the gods only know.’

“Sanjogta replied, ‘Victory and fame to my lord! O, sun of the Chauhans,
in glory, or in pleasure, who has tasted so deeply as you? To die is the
destiny not only of man but of the gods: all desire to throw off the old
garment; but to die well is to live for ever. Think not of self, but of
immortality; let your sword divide your foe, and I will be your
_ardhanga_[4.23.47] hereafter.’

“The king sought the bard, who expounded the dream, and the Guru wrote
an incantation, which he placed in his turban. A thousand brass vessels
of fresh milk were poured in libations to the sun and moon. Ten
buffaloes were sacrificed to the supporters of the globe, and gifts were
made to all. But will offerings of blood or libations of milk arrest
what is decreed? If by these man could undo what is ordained, would Nala
or the Pandus have suffered as they did?”

While the warriors assemble in council to consult on the best mode of
opposing the Sultan of Ghazni, the king leaves them to deliberate, in
order to advise with Sanjogta. Her reply is curious:

“Who asks woman for advice? The world deems their understanding shallow;
even when truths issue from their lips, none listen thereto. Yet what is
the world without woman? We have the forms of Sakti[4.23.48] with the
fire of Siva; we are at once thieves and sanctuaries; we are vessels of
virtue and of vice—of knowledge and of ignorance. The man of wisdom, the
astrologer, can from the books calculate the motion and course of the
planets; but in the book of woman he is ignorant: and this is not a
saying of to-day, it ever has been so: our book has not been mastered,
therefore, to hide their ignorance, they say, in woman there is no
wisdom! Yet woman shares your joys and your sorrows. Even when you
depart from the mansion of the sun, we part not. Hunger and thirst we
cheerfully partake with you; we are as the lakes, of which you are the
swans; what are when absent from our bosoms?”

The army having assembled, and all being prepared to march against the
Islamite, in the last great battle which subjugated India, the fair
Sanjogta armed her lord for the encounter. In vain she sought the rings
of his corslet; her eyes were [625] fixed on the face of the Chauhan, as
those of the famished wretch who finds a piece of gold. The sound of the
drum reached the ear of the Chauhan; it was as a death-knell on that of
Sanjogta: and as he left her to head Delhi’s heroes, she vowed that
henceforward water only should sustain her. “I shall see him again in
the region of Surya, but never more in Yoginipur.”[4.23.49] Her
prediction was fulfilled: her lord was routed, made captive and slain;
and, faithful to her vow, she mounted the funeral pyre.

=The Queen of Ganor.=—Were we called upon to give a pendant for
Lucretia, it would be found in the queen of Ganor.[4.23.50] After having
defended five fortresses against the foe, she retreated to her last
stronghold on the Nerbudda, and had scarcely left the bark, when the
assailants arrived in pursuit. The disheartened defenders were few in
number, and the fortress was soon in possession of the foe, the founder
of the family now ruling in Bhopal. The beauty of the queen of Ganor was
an allurement only secondary to his desire for her country, and he
invited her to reign over it and him. Denial would have been useless,
and would have subjected her to instant coercion, for the Khan awaited
her reply in the hall below; she therefore sent a message of assent,
with a complimentary reflection on his gallant conduct and determination
of pursuit; adding, that he merited her hand for his bravery, and might
prepare for the nuptials, which should be celebrated on the terrace of
the palace. She demanded two hours for unmolested preparation, that she
might appear in appropriate attire, and with the distinction her own and
his rank demanded.

Ceremonials, on a scale of magnificence equal to the shortness of the
time, were going on. The song of joy had already stifled the discordant
voice of war, and at length the Khan was summoned to the terrace. Robed
in the marriage garb presented to him by the queen, with a necklace and
aigrette of superb jewels from the coffers of Ganor, he hastened to obey
the mandate, and found that fame had not done justice to her charms. He
was desired to be seated, and in conversation full of rapture on his
side, hours were as minutes while he gazed on the beauty of the queen.
But presently his countenance fell—he complained of heat; punkas and
water were brought, but they availed him not, and he began to tear the
bridal garments from his frame, when the queen thus addressed him [626]:
“Know, Khan, that your last hour is come; our wedding and our death
shall be sealed together. The vestments which cover you are poisoned;
you had left me no other expedient to escape pollution.” While all were
horror-struck by this declaration, she sprung from the battlements into
the flood beneath. The Khan died in extreme torture, and was buried on
the road to Bhopal; and, strange to say, a visit to his grave has the
reputation of curing the tertian of that country.[4.23.51]

=Rāja Jai Singh and his Wife.=—We may give another anecdote illustrative
of this extreme delicacy of sentiment, but without so tragical a
conclusion. The celebrated Raja Jai Singh of Amber had espoused a
princess of Haraoti, whose manners and garb, accordant with the
simplicity of that provincial capital, subjected her to the badinage of
the more refined court of Amber, whose ladies had added the imperial
costume to their own native dress. One day being alone with the prince,
he began playfully to contrast the sweeping jupe of Kotah with the more
scanty robe of the belles of his own capital; and taking up a pair of
scissors, said he would reduce it to an equality with the latter.
Offended at such levity, she seized his sword, and assuming a
threatening attitude, said, “that in the house to which she had the
honour to belong, they were not habituated to jests of this nature; that
mutual respect was the guardian, not only of happiness but of virtue”;
and she assured him, that if he ever again so insulted her, he would
find that the daughter of Kotah could use a sword more effectively than
the prince of Amber the scissors; adding, that she would prevent any
future scion of her house from being subjected to similar disrespect, by
declaring such intermarriages _talak_, or forbidden, which interdict I
believe yet exists.[4.23.52]

=A Courageous Rājput Woman.=—I will append an anecdote related by the
celebrated Zalim Singh, characteristic of the presence of mind,
prowess, and physical strength of the Rajput women. To attend and aid
in the minutiae of husbandry is by no means uncommon with them, as to
dress and carry the meals of their husbands to the fields is a general
practice. In the jungle which skirts the knolls of Pachpahar, a huge
bear assaulted a Rajputni as she was carrying her husband’s dinner. As
he approached with an air of gallantry upon his hind-legs, doubting
whether the food or herself [627] were the intended prey, she
retreated behind a large tree, round the trunk of which Bruin, still
in his erect attitude, tried all his powers of circumvention to seize
her. At length, half exhausted, she boldly grasped his paws, and with
so vigorous a hold that he roared with pain, while in vain, with his
short neck, did he endeavour to reach the powerful hand which fixed
him. While she was in this dilemma, a Pardesi (a foreign soldier of
the State) happened to be passing to the garrison of Gagraun, and she
called out to him in a voice of such unconcern to come and release her
for a time, that he complied without hesitation. She had not retired,
however, above a dozen yards ere he called loudly for her return,
being scarcely able to hold his new friend; but laughingly
recommending perseverance, she hastened on, and soon returned with her
husband, who laid the monster prostrate with his matchlock, and
rescued the Pardesi from his unpleasing predicament.[4.23.53]

Such anecdotes might be multiplied _ad infinitum_; but I will conclude
with one displaying the romantic chivalry of the Rajput, and the
influence of the fair in the formation of character; it is taken from
the annals of Jaisalmer, the most remote of the States of Rajasthan, and
situated in the heart of the desert, of which it is an oasis.

=The Wedding of Sādhu.=—Raningdeo was lord of Pugal, a fief of
Jaisalmer; his heir, named Sadhu, was the terror of the desert, carrying
his raids even to the valley of the Indus, and on the east to Nagor.
Returning from a foray, with a train of captured camels and horses, he
passed by Aurint, where dwelt Manik Rao, the chief of the Mohils, whose
rule extended over 1440 villages. Being invited to partake of the
hospitality of the Mohil, the heir of Pugal attracted the favourable
regards of the old chieftain’s daughter:

              She loved him for the dangers he had passed;

for he had the fame of being the first riever of the desert. Although
betrothed to the heir of the Rathor of Mandor, she signified her wish to
renounce the throne to be the bride of the chieftain of Pugal; and in
spite of the dangers he provoked, and contrary to the Mohil chief’s
advice, Sadhu, as a gallant Rajput, dared not reject the overture, and
he promised “to accept the coco,”[4.23.54] if sent in form to Pugal
[628]. In due time it came, and the nuptials were solemnized at Aurint.
The dower was splendid; gems of high price, vessels of gold and silver,
a golden bull, and a train of thirteen _dewadharis_,[4.23.55] or damsels
of wisdom and penetration.

Arankanwal, the slighted heir of Mandor, determined on revenge, and with
four thousand Rathors planted himself in the path of Sadhu’s return,
aided by the Sankhla Mehraj, whose son Sadhu had slain. Though entreated
to add four thousand Mohils to his escort, Sadhu deemed his own gallant
band of seven hundred Bhattis sufficient to convey his bride to his
desert abode, and with difficulty accepted fifty, led by Meghraj, the
brother of the bride.

The rivals encountered at Chondan, where Sadhu had halted to repose; but
the brave Rathor scorned the advantage of numbers, and a series of
single combats ensued, with all the forms of chivalry. The first who
entered the lists was Jaitanga, of the Pahu clan, and of the kin of
Sadhu. The enemy came upon him by surprise while reposing on the ground,
his saddle-cloth for his couch, and the bridle of his steed twisted
round his arm; he was soon recognized by the Sankhla, who had often
encountered his prowess, on which he expatiated to Arankanwal, who sent
an attendant to awake him; but the gallant Panch Kalyan (for such was
the name of his steed) had already performed this service, and they
found him upbraiding white-legs[4.23.56] for treading upon him. Like a
true Rajput, “_toujours prêt_,” he received the hostile message, and
sent the envoy back with his compliments, and a request for some _amal_
or opium, as he had lost his own supply. With all courtesy this was
sent, and prepared by the domestics of his antagonist; after taking
which he lay down to enjoy the customary siesta. As soon as he awoke, he
prepared for the combat, girt on his armour, and having reminded Panch
Kalyan of the fields he had won, and telling him to bear him well that
day, he mounted and advanced. The son of Chonda admiring his sang-froid,
and the address with which he guided his steed, commanded Jodha Chauhan,
the leader of his party, to encounter the Pahu. “Their two-edged swords
soon clashed in combat”; but the gigantic Chauhan fell beneath the
Bhatti, who, warmed with the fight, plunged amidst his foes,
encountering all he deemed worthy of his assault.

The fray thus begun, single combats and actions of equal parties
followed, the [629] rivals looking on. At length Sadhu mounted: twice he
charged the Rathor ranks, carrying death on his lance; each time he
returned for the applause of his bride, who beheld the battle from her
car. Six hundred of his foes had fallen, and nearly half his own
warriors. He bade her a last adieu, while she exhorted him to the fight,
saying, “she would witness his deeds, and if he fell, would follow him
even in death.” Now he singled out his rival Arankanwal,[4.23.57] who
was alike eager to end the strife, and blot out his disgrace in his
blood. They met: some seconds were lost in a courteous contention, each
yielding to his rival the first blow, at length dealt out by Sadhu on
the neck of the disappointed Rathor. It was returned with the rapidity
of lightning, and the daughter of the Mohil saw the steel descend on the
head of her lover. Both fell prostrate to the earth: but Sadhu’s soul
had sped; the Rathor had only swooned. With the fall of the leaders the
battle ceased; and the fair cause of strife, Karamdevi, at once a
virgin, a wife, and a widow, prepared to follow her affianced. Calling
for a sword, with one arm she dissevered the other, desiring it might be
conveyed to the father of her lord—“tell him such was his daughter.” The
other she commanded to be struck off, and given, with her marriage
jewels thereon, to the bard of the Mohils. The pile was prepared on the
field of battle; and taking her lord in her embrace, she gave herself up
to the devouring flames. The dissevered limbs were disposed of as
commanded; the old Rao of Pugal caused the one to be burnt, and a tank
was excavated on the spot, which is still called after the heroine, “the
lake of Karamdevi.”

This encounter took place in S. 1462, A.D. 1406. The brunt of the battle
fell on the Sankhlas, and only twenty-five out of three hundred and
fifty left the field with their leader, Mehraj, himself severely
wounded. The rejected lover had four brothers dangerously hurt; and in
six months the wounds of Arankanwal opened afresh: he died, and the
rites to the manes of these rivals in love, the _chhamasa_[4.23.58] of
Sadhu, and the _duadasa_[4.23.59] of Arankanwal, were celebrated on the
same day.

Without pausing to trace the moral springs of that devotion which
influenced the Mohila maiden, we shall relate the sequel to the story
(though out of place)[4.23.60] in illustration of the prosecution of
feuds throughout Rajasthan. The fathers [630] now took up the quarrel of
their sons; and as it was by the prowess of the Sankhla vassal of Mandor
that the band of Sadhu was discomfited, the old Rao, Raningdeo, drew
together the lances of Pugal, and carried destruction into the fief of
Mehraj. The Sankhlas yield in valour to none of the brave races who
inhabit the “region of death”; and Mehraj was the father of Harbuji
Sankhla, the Palladin of Marudes, whose exploits are yet the theme of
the erratic bards of Rajasthan. Whether he was unprepared for the
assault, or overcome by numbers, three hundred of his kin and clan
moistened the sand-hills of the Luni with their blood. Raningdeo,
flushed with revenge and laden with spoil, had reached his own frontier,
when he was overtaken by Chonda of Mandor, alike eager to avenge the
loss of his son Arankanwal, and this destructive inroad on his vassal. A
desperate conflict ensued, in which the Rao of Pugal was slain; and the
Rathor returned in triumph to Mandor.

Unequal to cope with the princes of Mandor, the two remaining sons of
Raningdeo, Tana and Mera, resolved to abandon their faith, in order to
preserve the point of honour, and “to take up their father’s
feud.”[4.23.61] At this period the king, Khizr Khan,[4.23.62] was at
Multan; to him they went, and by offers of service and an open apostacy,
obtained a force to march against Chonda, who had recently added Nagor
to his growing dominions. While the brothers were thus negotiating, they
were joined by Kilan, the third son of their common sovereign, the Rawal
of Jaisalmer, who advised the use of _chal_, which with the Rajput means
indifferently stratagem or treachery, so that it facilitates revenge.
With the ostensible motive of ending their feuds, and restoring
tranquillity to their borderers, whose sole occupation was watching,
burning, and devastating, Kilan offered a daughter in marriage to
Chonda, and went so far as to say, that if he suspected aught unfair, he
would, though contrary to custom and his own dignity, send the Bhatti
princess to Nagor. This course being deemed the wisest, Chonda
acquiesced in his desire “to extinguish the feud (_wair bujhana_).”

=Nāgor taken by Stratagem.=—Fifty covered chariots were prepared as the
nuptial cortège, but which, instead of the bride and her handmaids,
contained the bravest men of Pugal.[4.23.63] These were preceded by a
train of horses led by Rajputs, of whom seven hundred also attended the
camels laden with baggage, provisions, and gifts, while a small armed
[631] retinue brought up the rear. The king’s troops, amounting to one
thousand horse, remained at a cautious distance behind. Chonda left
Nagor to meet the cavalcade and his bride, and had reached the chariots
ere his suspicions were excited. Observing, however, some matters which
little savoured of festivity, the Rathor commenced his retreat. Upon
this the chiefs rushed from their chariots and camels, and the royal
auxiliaries advancing, Chonda was assailed and fell at the gate of
Nagor; and friend and foe entering the city together, a scene of general
plunder commenced.

Once more the feud was balanced; a son and a father had fallen on each
side, and the petty Rao of Pugal had bravely maintained the _wair_
against the princes of Mandor. The point of honour had been carried to
the utmost bound by both parties, and an opportunity of reconciliation
was at hand, which prevented the shadow of disgrace either to him who
made or him who accepted the overture. The Rathors dreaded the loss of
the recent acquisition, Nagor, and proposed to the Bhattis to seal their
pacification with the blood of their common foe. United, they fell on
the spoil-encumbered Tatars, whom they slew to a man.[4.23.64] Their
father’s feud thus revenged, the sons of Raningdeo (who, as apostates
from their faith, could no longer hold Pugal in fief, which was retained
by Kilan, who had aided their revenge) retired amongst the Aboharia
Bhattis, and their descendants are now styled Momin Musalman Bhatti.

From such anecdotes it will be obvious wherein consists the point of
honour with the Rajputs; and it is not improbable that the very cause
which has induced an opinion that females can have no influence on the
lords of the creation, namely, their seclusion, operates powerfully in
the contrary way.

=Influence of Women on Rājput Society.=—In spite of this seclusion, the
knowledge of their accomplishments and of their personal perfections,
radiates wherever the itinerant bard can travel. Though invisible
themselves, they can see; and accident often favours public report, and
brings the object of renown within the sphere of personal observation:
as in the case of Sadhu and the Mohila maiden. Placed behind screens,
they see the youths of all countries, and there are occasions when
permanent impressions are made, during tournaments and other martial
exercises. Here we have just seen that the passion of the [632] daughter
of the Mohil was fostered at the risk of the destruction not only of her
father’s house, but also that of her lover; and as the fourteen hundred
and forty towns, which owned the sway of the former, were not long after
absorbed into the accumulating territory of Mandor, this insult may have
been the cause of the extirpation of the Mohils, as it was of the
Bhattis of Pugal.

The influence of women on Rajput society is marked in every page of
Hindu history, from the most remote periods. What led to the wars of
Rama? the rape of Sita. What rendered deadly the feuds of the Yadus? the
insult to Draupadi. What made prince Nala an exile from Narwar? his love
for Damayanti. What made Raja Bhartari abandon the throne of Avanti? the
loss of Pingali. What subjected the Hindu to the dominion of the
Islamite? the rape of the princess of Kanauj. In fine, the cause which
overturned kingdoms, commuted the sceptre to the pilgrim’s staff, and
formed the groundwork of all their grand epics, is woman. In ancient,
and even in modern times, she had more than a negative in the choice of
a husband, and this choice fell on the gallant and the gay. The fair
Draupadi was the prize of the best archer, and the Pandu Bhima
established his fame, and bore her from all the suitors of Kampila. The
princess of Kanauj, when led through ranks of the princes of Hind, each
hoping to be the object of her choice, threw the marriage-garland
(_barmala_) over the neck of the effigy of the Chauhan, which her father
in derision had placed as porter at the gate. Here was incense to fame
and incentive to gallantry![4.23.65]

In the same manner, as related in another part of this work, did the
princess of Kishangarh invite Rana Raj Singh to bear her from the
impending union with the emperor of the Moguls; and abundant other
instances could be adduced of the free agency of these invisibles.

It were superfluous to reason on the effects of traditional histories,
such as these, on the minds and manners of the females of Rajasthan.
They form the amusement of their lives, and the grand topic in all their
conversaziones; they read them with the Purohit, and they have them sung
by the itinerant bard or Dholi minstrel [633], who disseminates them
wherever the Rajput name extends. The Rajput mother claims her full
share in the glory of her son, who imbibes at the maternal fount his
first rudiments of chivalry; and the importance of this parental
instruction cannot be better illustrated than in the ever-recurring
simile, “make thy mother’s milk resplendent”; the full force of which we
have in the powerful, though overstrained expression of the Bundi
queen’s joy on the announcement of the heroic death of her son: “the
long-dried fountain at which he fed, jetted forth as she listened to the
tale of his death, and the marble pavement, on which it fell, rent
asunder.” Equally futile would it be to reason on the intensity of
sentiment thus implanted in the infant Rajput, of whom we may say
without metaphor, the shield is his cradle, and daggers his playthings;
and with whom the first commandment is, “avenge thy father’s feud”; on
which they can heap text upon text, from the days of the great Pandu
moralist Vyasa to the not less influential bard of their nation, the
Trikala Chand.


Footnote 4.23.1:

  [“The custom handed down in regular succession since time immemorial
  among the four chief castes and the mixed races of that country, is
  called the conduct of virtuous men” (Manu, _Laws_, ii. 18).]

Footnote 4.23.2:

  So says Valmiki, the author of the oldest epic in existence, the
  Ramayana [see p. 693 above].

Footnote 4.23.3:

  _Les Femmes, leur condition et leur influence dans l’ordre social_,
  vol. i. p. 10.

Footnote 4.23.4:

  So are some of the Hindu races in the mountainous districts about the
  Himalaya, and in other parts of India. This curious trait in ancient
  manners is deserving of investigation: it might throw some light on
  the early history of the world. [“Each man has but one wife, yet all
  the women are held in common: for this is a custom of the Massagetae,
  and not of the Scythians, as the Greeks wrongly say” (Herodotus i.
  216). For polyandry in India see Risley, _The People of India_, 2nd
  ed. 206 ff.]

Footnote 4.23.5:

  [Polygamy does to some extent prevail (_Census Report, Rājputāna_,
  1911, i. 157 f.)]

Footnote 4.23.6:

  _Laws_, v. 130.

Footnote 4.23.7:

  _Ibid._ ii. 33.

Footnote 4.23.8:

  _Digest of Hindu Law_, Colebrooke, vol. ii. p. 209 [Manu iii. 55-8].

Footnote 4.23.9:

  Of all the religions which have diversified mankind, whatever man
  might select, woman should choose the Christian. This alone gives her
  just rank in the scale of creation, whether arising from the demotic
  principle which pervades our faith, or the dignity conferred on the
  sex in being chosen to be the mother of the Saviour of man. In turning
  over the pages of Manu we find many mortifying texts, which I am
  inclined to regard as interpolations; as the following, so opposed to
  the beautiful sentiment above quoted: “A wife, a son, a servant, a
  pupil, and a younger brother, may be corrected when they commit faults
  with a rope, or the small thong of a cane” [viii. 299]. Such texts
  might lead us to adopt Ségur’s conclusions, that ever since the days
  of the patriarchs women were only brilliant slaves—victims, who
  exhibited, in the wreaths and floral coronets which bedecked them, the
  sacrifices to which they were destined. In the patriarchal ages their
  occupations were to season the viands, and bake the bread, and weave
  cloth for the tents: their recreations limited to respire the fresh
  evening air under the shade of a fig tree, and sing canticles to the
  Almighty. Such a fate, indeed, must appear to a Parisian dame, who
  passes her time between the Feydeau and Tivoli, and whose daily
  promenade is through the Champs Élysées, worse than death: yet there
  is no positive hardships in these employments, and it was but the fair
  division of labour in the primitive ages, and that which characterizes
  the Rajputni of the present day.

Footnote 4.23.10:

  Manu lays down some plain and wholesome rules for the domestic conduct
  of the wife; above all, he recommends her to “preserve a cheerful
  temper,” and “frugality in domestic expenses” [_Laws_, v. 150]. Some
  of his texts savour, however, more of the anchorite than of a person
  conversant with mankind; and when he commands the husband to be
  reverenced as a god by the virtuous wife, even though enamoured of
  another woman, it may be justly doubted if ever he found obedience
  thereto; or the scarcely less difficult ordinance, “for a whole year
  let a husband bear with his wife who treats him with aversion,” after
  which probation he is permitted to separate [ix. 77]. It is very
  likely the Rajputs are more in the habit of quoting the first of these
  texts than of hearing the last: for although they have a choice at
  home, they are not ashamed to be the avowed admirers of the Aspasias
  and Phrynes of the capital; from the same cause which attracted
  Socrates and made Pericles a slave and which will continue until the
  united charms of the dance and the song are sanctioned to be practised
  by the _légitimes_ within.

Footnote 4.23.11:

  Manu ix. 101.

Footnote 4.23.12:

  Parmāl or Paramardi Chandel (A.D. 1165-1203). He was defeated by
  Prithirāj Chauhān in 1182.]

Footnote 4.23.13:

  On the Pahuj, and now belonging to the Bundela prince of Datia. The
  author has been over this field of battle.

Footnote 4.23.14:

  [On the Bannāphar sept, from which sprang the heroes Alha and Udal,
  see Crooke, _Tribes and Castes North-West Provinces_, i. 137 ff.;
  their bravery forms the subject of numerous ballads (_ASR_, ii. 455

Footnote 4.23.15:

  Hindaun was a town dependent on Bayana, the capital of the Jadons,
  whose descendants still occupy Karauli and Sri Mathura.

Footnote 4.23.16:

  [The modern Rohilkhand Division.]

Footnote 4.23.17:

  Rao Pajun of Amber, one of the great vassals of the Chauhan, and
  ancestor of the present Raja of Jaipur.

Footnote 4.23.18:

  In the original, “the land of the Baghel to that of the Chandel.” Rewa
  is capital of [or leading State in] Baghelkhand, founded by the
  Baghela Rajputs, a branch of the Solanki kings of Anhilwara.

Footnote 4.23.19:

  Antarved, the Duab, or Mesopotamia of the Jumna and Ganges.

Footnote 4.23.20:

  A district S.W. of Delhi, notorious for the lawless habits of its
  inhabitants: a very ancient Hindu race, but the greater part forced
  proselytes to the faith of Islam. In the time of Prithiraj the chief
  of Mewat was one of his vassals.

Footnote 4.23.21:

  _Jayapattra_, or ‘bulletin of victory.’

Footnote 4.23.22:

  Jaichand was then king of this city, only second to Delhi. He was
  attacked in 1193 (A.D.) by Shihabu-d-din, after his conquest of the
  Chauhan, driven from his kingdom, and found a watery grave in the
  Ganges. [The battle was fought at Chandāwar in the Etāwa District,
  A.D. 1194 (Smith, _EHI_, 385).]

Footnote 4.23.23:

  Jagnakh had two villages conferred upon him, besides an elephant and a

Footnote 4.23.24:

  [Compare _Iliad_, xii. 237 ff.]

Footnote 4.23.25:

  The phenicopteros. [The great crane, _Grus antigone_.]

Footnote 4.23.26:

  A large red duck, the emblem of fidelity with the Rajputs. [The
  Brahmani duck, _Anas casarca_.]

Footnote 4.23.27:

  The jackal.

Footnote 4.23.28:

  Commander of the succours of Kanauj.

Footnote 4.23.29:

  _Asis_ is a form of benediction only bestowed by females and priests:
  it is performed by clasping both hands over the person’s head, and
  waving a piece of silver or other valuable over him, which is bestowed
  in charity [the object being to disperse evil influence].

Footnote 4.23.30:

  This is a very ancient ceremony, and is called _Nicharavali_ [or
  _ārti_. The Author has frequently had a large salver filled with
  silver coin waved over his head, which was handed for distribution
  amongst his attendants. It is most appropriate from the fair, from
  whom also he has had this performed by their proxies, the family
  priest or female attendants.

Footnote 4.23.31:

  The sankh, or war-shell, is thrice sounded, and the nakkaras strike
  thrice, when the army is to march; but should it after such
  proclamation remain on its ground, a scape-goat is slain in front of
  the imperial tent.

Footnote 4.23.32:

  This picture recalls the remembrance of Hacon and the heroes of the
  north; with the Valkyries or choosers of the slain; the celestial
  maids of war of Scandinavia.

Footnote 4.23.33:


Footnote 4.23.34:

  Baghnakh or Naharnakh. [This weapon is best known by its use by Sivaji
  when he slew Afzu-l Khān in 1659 at Pratāpgarh (Grant Duff, _Hist.
  Mahrattas_, 78). Four specimens in the Indian Museum are described,
  with an illustration, by Hon. W. Egerton (_Illustrated Handbook of
  Indian Arms_, 115).]

Footnote 4.23.35:


Footnote 4.23.36:

  _Mala_, a necklace. The _tulasi_ [the plant _Olymum sanctum_] or
  _rudraksha_ [the nuts of _Elaeocarpus ganitrus_, the former worn by
  Vaishnavas, the latter by Saivas] had the same estimation amongst the
  Hindus that the mistletoe had amongst the ancient Britons, and was
  always worn in battle as a charm.

Footnote 4.23.37:


Footnote 4.23.38:

  A Rajput never names his wife. Here it is evidently optional to the
  widow to live or die, though Alha shows his wish for her society
  above. See chapter on Satis, which will follow.

Footnote 4.23.39:


Footnote 4.23.40:

  It was a _jantar_ or phylactery of Hanuman the monkey deity; probably
  a magical stanza, with his image.

Footnote 4.23.41:

  A crooked scimitar.

Footnote 4.23.42:

  One of the names of Mena or Parvati. This passage will illustrate the
  subject of Satis in a future chapter.

Footnote 4.23.43:

  “’Tis a pleasure (says Bernier) to see them with the fume of opium in
  their heads, embrace each other when the battle is to begin, and give
  their mutual farewells, as men resolved to die.” [Ed. 1914, p. 40. The
  battle of Dharmāt was fought on the banks of the river Sipra (_IGI_,
  xxi. 14 f.) on 15th April, 1658. Manucci was not present, but gives an
  account derived from Aurangzeb’s artillery officers of the battle at
  Dharmātpur, about 14 miles from Ujjain (i. 259 f., and see Jadunath
  Sarkar, _Life of Aurangzeb_, ii. 1 ff.). The latter (ii. 20 f.) speaks
  highly of the valour of Jaswant Singh, but Khāfi Khan (Elliot-Dowson
  vii. 219) says that he acted in a cowardly way. The account quoted by
  the author is not in the original work of Ferishta, but in Dow’s
  continuation (ed. 1812, iii. 206 f).].

Footnote 4.23.44:

  Bernier’s _History of the Late Revolution of the Empire of the Mogul_,
  fol. p. 13, ed. 1684 [ed. 1914, p. 40 f., where a somewhat different
  version is given].

Footnote 4.23.45:

  It is deemed unlucky to see this emblem of Ganesa in sleep.

Footnote 4.23.46:

  The battle-shout of the Rajput. [Hara, a title of Siva.]

Footnote 4.23.47:

  ‘Half-body,’ which we may render, in common phraseology, ‘other half.’

Footnote 4.23.48:

  [The impersonation of the female energy.]

Footnote 4.23.49:

  Delhi [“the city of the witch or sorceress”].

Footnote 4.23.50:

  [The “Ganore” of the text possibly represents the town of Ganora in
  the Bānswāra State. There is another place of the same name in

Footnote 4.23.51:

  [Several of our best authorities—Sir Lauder Brunton, Sir G. Birdwood,
  Professors A. Keith and A. Doran of the Royal College of Surgeons—have
  kindly investigated the question of death by poisoned robes, of which
  various instances are reported in this work. The general result is
  that it is doubtful if any known poison could be used in this way. Sir
  Lauder Brunton remarks that a paste of the seeds of _Abrus
  precatorius_ is used for killing animals. Dr. N. Chevers (_Manual of
  Medical Jurisprudence in India_, p. 299) writes: “Any one who has
  noticed how freely a robust person in India perspires through a thin
  garment can understand that, if a cloth were thoroughly impregnated
  with the cantharidine of that very powerful vesicant, the _Telini_,
  the result would be as dangerous as an extensive burn.” For _telini_
  (_Mylabris punctum_), used as a substitute for _Cantharis
  vesicatoria_, see Sir G. Watt (_Dict. Economic Products of India_, v.
  309). Manucci (i. 149) says that Akbar placed such poisons in charge
  of a special officer. The stock classical case is that of Herakles
  killed by an ointment made from the blood of Nessus. An old writer, W.
  Ramesey (_Of Poisons_ (1660), p. 14 f.) speaks of poisoning done in
  this way: but he regards some of “these and the like storeyes to be
  merely Fabulous ... and rather to be attributed to the Subtilty,
  Craft, and Malice of the Devill” (12 series, _Notes and Queries_, i.
  (1916) p. 417).]

Footnote 4.23.52:

  The physician (unless he unite with his office that of ghostly
  comforter) has to feel the pulse of his patient with a curtain between
  them, through a rent, in which the arm is extended. [See the amusing
  account by Fryer (_New Account of E. India and Persia_, Hakluyt
  Society, ed. i. 326 f.).]

Footnote 4.23.53:

  [This is a stock story (Risley, _The People of India_, 2nd ed. 179 f.;
  Rose, _Glossary_, ii. 220; cf. Herodotus v. 12).]

Footnote 4.23.54:


Footnote 4.23.55:

  Literally ‘lamp-holders’; such is the term applied to these handmaids;
  who invariably form a part of the _daeja_ or ‘dower.’ [The custom of
  sending handmaids with the bride, the girls often becoming concubines
  of the bridegroom, is common (Russell, _Tribes and Castes Central
  Provinces_, i. 63, ii. 77). In Gujarāt they are known as Goli or
  Vadhāran, and are sometimes married to the Khawās, or male slaves of
  the harem (_BG_, ix. Part i. 147, 235).]

Footnote 4.23.56:

  Panch Kalyan is generally, if not always, a chestnut, having four
  white legs, with a white nose and list or star.

Footnote 4.23.57:

  _Arankanwal_, ‘the lotos of the desert,’ from _aranya_ (Sanskrit), ‘a
  waste,’ and _kamala_ (pronounced _kanwal_), ‘a lotos’: classically it
  should be written _aranykamala_; I write it as pronounced.

Footnote 4.23.58:

  The rites to the manes on the completion of the ‘sixth month.’

Footnote 4.23.59:

  The rites to the manes on the ‘twelfth day.’

Footnote 4.23.60:

  The greater portion of these anecdotes, the foundation of national
  character, will appear in the respective annals.

Footnote 4.23.61:

  _Bap ra wair lena._

Footnote 4.23.62:

  [Khizr Khān, of the Sayyid dynasty of Delhi, was left in charge by
  Timūr, and died A.D. 1421.]

Footnote 4.23.63:

  [For this legend see Vol. I. p. 308 above.]

Footnote 4.23.64:

  Khizr Khan succeeded to the throne of Delhi in A.D. 1414 [or rather,
  was left in charge of Delhi by Timūr, and died A.D. 1421], and
  according to the Jaisalmer annals the commencement of these feuds was
  in A.D. 1406.

Footnote 4.23.65:

  The Samnite custom, so lauded by Montesquieu as the reward of youthful
  virtue, was akin in sentiment to the Rajput, except that the fair
  Rajputni made herself the sole judge of merit in her choice. It was
  more calculated for republican than aristocratic society: “On
  assembloit tous les jeunes gens, et on les jugeoit; celui qui était
  déclaré le meilleur de tout prenoit pour sa femme la fille qu’il
  vouloit: l’amour, la beauté, la chastité, la vertu, la naissance, les
  richesses même, tout cela était, pour ainsi dire, la dot de la vertu.”
  It would be difficult, adds Montesquieu, to imagine a more noble
  recompense, or one less expensive to a petty State, or more
  influential on the conduct of both sexes (_L’Esprit des Lois_, chap.
  xvi. livre vii.).


                               CHAPTER 24

=The Immolation of Women.=—We now proceed to consider another trait of
Rajput character, exemplified in the practice of female immolation, and
to inquire whether religion, custom, or affection has most share in such
sacrifice. To arrive at the origin of this rite, we must trace it to the
recesses of mythology, where we shall discover the precedent in the
example of Sati, who to avenge an insult to Iswara, in her own father’s
omission to ask her lord to an entertainment, consumed herself in the
presence of the assembled gods. With this act of fealty (_sati_) the
name of Daksha’s daughter has been identified; and her regeneration and
reunion to her husband, as the mountain-nymph Mena, or Parvati, furnish
the incentive to similar [634] acts. In the history of these celestial
beings, the Rajputni has a memorable lesson before her, that no domestic
differences can afford exemption from this proof of faith: for Jupiter
and Juno were not more eminent examples of connubial discord than Mena
and Siva, who was not only alike unfaithful, but more cruel, driving
Mena from his Olympus (Kailas), and forcing her to seek refuge in the
murky caverns of Caucasus. Female immolation, therefore, originated with
the sun-worshipping Saivas, and was common to all those nations who
adored this the most splendid object of the visible creation. Witness
the Scythic Gete or Jat warrior of the Jaxartes, who devoted his wife,
horse, arms, and slaves, to the flames; the “giant Gete” of Scandinavia,
who forgot not on the shores of the Baltic his Transoxianian habits; and
the Frisian Frank and Saxon descended from him, who ages after omitted
only the female. Could we assign the primary cause of a custom so
opposed to the first law of nature with the same certainty that we can
prove its high antiquity, we might be enabled to devise some means for
its abolition. The chief characteristic of Satiism is its expiating
quality: for by this act of faith, the Sati not only makes atonement for
the sins of her husband, and secures the remission of her own, but has
the joyful assurance of reunion to the object whose beatitude she
procures. Having once imbibed this doctrine, its fulfilment is
powerfully aided by that heroism of character inherent to the Rajputni;
though we see that the stimulant of religion requires no aid even in the
timid female of Bengal, who, relying on the promise of regeneration,
lays her head on the pyre with the most philosophical composure.

Nothing short of the abrogation of the doctrines which pronounce such
sacrifices exculpatory can be effectual in preventing them; but this
would be to overturn the fundamental article of their creed, the notion
of metempsychosis. Further research may disclose means more attainable,
and the sacred Shastras are at once the surest and the safest. Whoever
has examined these is aware of the conflict of authorities for and
against cremation; but a proper application of them (and they are the
highest who give it not their sanction) has, I believe, never been
resorted to. Vyasa, the chronicler of the Yadus, a race whose manners
were decidedly Scythic, is the great advocate for female sacrifice: he
(in the Mahabharata) pronounces the expiation perfect. But Manu
inculcates no such doctrine [635]; and although the state of widowhood
he recommends might be deemed onerous by the fair sex of the west, it
would be considered little hardship in the east. “Let her emaciate her
body, by living voluntarily on pure flowers, roots, and fruit; but let
her not, when her lord is deceased, even pronounce the name of another
man.” Again he says, “A virtuous wife ascends to heaven, if, after the
decease of her lord, she devote herself to pious austerity; but a widow,
who slights her deceased husband by marrying again, brings disgrace on
herself here below, and shall be excluded from the seat of her

These and many other texts, enjoining purity of life and manners to the
widow, are to be found in this first authority, but none demanding such
a cruel pledge of affection. Abstinence from the common pursuits of
life, and entire self-denial, are rewarded by “high renown in this
world, and in the next the abode of her husband”; and procure for her
the title of “_sadhwi_, or the virtuous.” These are deemed sufficient
pledges of affection by the first of sages.[4.24.2] So much has been
written on this subject that we shall not pursue it further in this
place; but proceed to consider a still more inhuman practice,

Although custom sanctions, and religion rewards, a Sati, the victim to
marital selfishness, yet, to the honour of humanity, neither
traditionary adage nor religious text can be quoted in support of a
practice so revolting as infanticide. Man alone, of the whole animal
creation, is equal to the task of destroying his offspring [636]: for
instinct preserves what reason destroys. The wife is the sacrifice to
his egotism, and the progeny of her own sex to his pride; and if the
unconscious infant should escape the influence of the latter, she is
only reserved to become the victim of the former at the period when life
is most desirous of extension. If the female reasoned on her destiny,
its hardships are sufficient to stifle all sense of joy, and produce
indifference to life. When a female is born, no anxious inquiries await
the mother—no greetings welcome the newcomer, who appears an intruder on
the scene, which often closes in the hour of its birth. But the very
silence with which a female birth is accompanied forcibly expresses
sorrow; and we dare not say that many compunctious visitings do not
obtrude themselves on those who, in accordance with custom and imagined
necessity, are thus compelled to violate the sentiments of nature.
Families may exult in the Satis which their cenotaphs portray,[4.24.3]
but none ever heard a Rajput boast of the destruction of his infant

=The Origin of Infanticide.=—What are the causes, we may ask,
sufficiently powerful to induce the suppression of a feeling which every
sentient being has in common for its offspring? To suppose the Rajput
devoid of this sentiment would argue his deficiency in the ordinary
attributes of humanity: often is he heard to exclaim, “Accursed the day
when a woman child was born to me!” The same motive which studded Europe
with convents, in which youth and beauty were immured until liberated by
death, first prompted the Rajput to infanticide: and, however revolting
the policy, it is perhaps kindness compared to incarceration. There can
be no doubt that monastic seclusion, practised by the Frisians in
France, the Langobardi in Italy, and the Visigoths in Spain, was brought
from Central Asia, the cradle of the Goths.[4.24.4] It is, in fact, a
modification of the same feeling which characterizes the Rajput and the
ancient German warrior—the dread of dishonour to the fair: the former
raises the poniard to the breast of his wife rather than witness her
captivity, and he gives the opiate to the infant, whom, if he cannot
portion and marry to her equal, he dare not see degraded [637].

=Infanticide.=—Although religion nowhere authorizes this barbarity, the
laws which regulate marriage amongst the Rajputs powerfully promote
infanticide. Not only is intermarriage prohibited between families of
the same clan (_khanp_), but between those of the same tribe (_got_);
and though centuries may have intervened since their separation, and
branches thus transplanted may have lost their original patronymic, they
can never be regrafted on the original stem: for instance, though eight
centuries have separated the two grand subdivisions of the Guhilots, and
the younger, the Sesodia, has superseded the elder, the Aharya, each
ruling distinct States, a marriage between any of the branches would be
deemed incestuous: the Sesodia is yet brother to the Aharya, and regards
every female of the race as his sister. Every tribe has therefore to
look abroad, to a race distinct from its own, for suitors for the
females. Foreign war, international feuds, or other calamities affect
tribes the most remote from each other; nor can war or famine thin the
clans of Marwar, without diminishing the female population of Amber:
thus both suffer in a twofold degree. Many virtuous and humane princes
have endeavoured to check or mitigate an evil, in the eradication of
which every parental feeling would co-operate. Sumptuary edicts alone
can control it; and the Rajputs were never sufficiently enamoured of
despotism to permit it to rule within their private dwellings. The plan
proposed, and in some degree followed by the great Jai Singh of Amber,
might with caution be pursued, and with great probability of success. He
submitted to the prince of every Rajput State a decree, which was laid
before a convocation of their respective vassals, in which he regulated
the _daeja_ or dower, and other marriage expenditure, with reference to
the property of the vassal, limiting it to one year’s income of the
estate. This plan was, however, frustrated by the vanity of the
Chondawat of Salumbar, who expended on the marriage of his daughter a
sum even greater than his sovereign could have afforded; and to have his
name blazoned by the bards and genealogists, he sacrificed the
beneficent views of one of the wisest of the Rajput race. Until vanity
suffers itself to be controlled, and the aristocratic Rajput submit to
republican simplicity,[4.24.5] the evils arising from nuptial profusion
will not cease. Unfortunately, those who could check it find their
interest in stimulating it, namely, the whole class of Mangtas [638]
(mendicants), bards, minstrels, jugglers, Brahmans who assemble on these
occasions, and pour forth their epithalamiums in praise of the virtue of
liberality. The Bardais are the grand recorders of fame, and the volume
of precedent is always recurred to, in citing the liberality of former
chiefs; while the dread of their satire (_visarva_, literally
‘poison’)[4.24.6] shuts the eyes of the chiefs to consequences, and they
are only anxious to maintain the reputation of their ancestors, though
fraught with future ruin. “The Dahima emptied his coffers” (says Chand,
the pole-star of the Rajputs) “on the marriage of his daughter with
Prithiraj; but he filled them with the praises of mankind.” The same
bard retails every article of these _daejas_ or ‘dowers,’ which thus
become precedents for future ages; and the “_lakh pasarna_,”[4.24.7]
then established for the chief bardai, has become a model to posterity.
Even now the Rana of Udaipur, in his season of poverty, at the recent
marriage of his daughters bestowed “the gift of a lakh” on the chief
bard; though the articles of gold, horses, clothes, etc., were included
in the estimate, and at an undue valuation, which rendered the gift not
quite so precious as in the days of the Chauhan. Were bonds taken from
all the feudal chiefs, and a penal clause inserted, of forfeiture of
their fief by all who exceeded a fixed nuptial expenditure, the axe
would be laid to the root, the evil would be checked, and the heart of
many a mother (and we may add father) be gladdened, by preserving at
once the point of honour and their child. When ignorance declaims
against the gratuitous love of murder amongst these brave men, our
contempt is excited equally by its short-sighted conclusions, and the
affected philanthropy which overlooks all remedy but the “_sic volo_.”
Sir John Shore,[4.24.8] when acting on the suggestions of the benevolent
Duncan for the suppression of this practice amongst the Rajkumars,
judged more wisely as a politician, and more charitably in his estimate
of human motives. “A prohibition,” says he, “enforced by the
denunciation of the severest temporal penalties, would have had little
efficacy in abolishing a custom which existed in opposition to the
feelings of humanity and natural affection”; but “the sanction of that
religion which the Rajkumars professed was appealed to in aid of the
ordinances of civil authority; and an engagement binding themselves to
desist from the barbarous practice was prepared, and circulated for
signature amongst the Rajkumars.” It may well be doubted how far this
influence could extend, when the root of the evil [639] remained
untouched, though not unseen, as the philanthropic Duncan pointed out in
the confession of the Rajkumars: “all unequivocally admitted it, but all
did not fully acknowledge its atrocity; and the only reason they
assigned for the inhuman practice was the great expense of procuring
suitable matches for their daughters, if they allowed them to grow up.”
The Rajkumar is one of the Chauhan sakha, chief of the Agnikulas, and in
proportion to its high and well-deserved pretensions on the score of
honour, it has more infanticides than any other of the “thirty-six royal
races.” Amongst those of this race out of the pale of feudalism, and
subjected to powers not Rajput, the practice is fourfold greater, from
the increased pressure of the cause which gave it birth, and the
difficulty of establishing their daughters in wedlock. Raja Jai Singh’s
enactment went far to remedy this. Conjoin his plan with Mr. Duncan’s,
provide dowers, and infanticide will cease. It is only by removing the
cause that the consequences can be averted.[4.24.9]

As to the almost universality of this practice amongst the Jarejas, the
leading cause, which will also operate to its continuance, has been
entirely overlooked. The Jarejas were Rajputs, a subdivision of the
Yadus; but by intermarriage with the Muhammadans, to whose faith they
became proselytes, they lost their caste. Political causes have
disunited them from the Muhammadans, and they desire again to be
considered as pure Rajputs; but having been contaminated, no Rajput will
intermarry with them. The owner of a hyde of land, whether Sesodia,
Rathor, or Chauhan, would scorn the hand of a Jareja princess. Can the
“_sic volo_” be applied to men who think in this fashion?

=Johar.=—Having thus pointed out the causes of the sacrifice of widows
and of infants, I shall touch on the yet more awful rite of Johar, when
a whole tribe may become extinct, of which several instances have been
recorded in the annals of Mewar. To the fair of other lands the fate of
the Rajputni must appear one of appalling hardship. In each stage of
life death is ready to claim her; by the poppy at its dawn, by the
flames in riper years; while the safety of the interval depending on the
uncertainty of war, at no period is her existence worth a twelve-month’s
purchase. The loss of a battle, or the capture of a city, is a signal to
avoid captivity and its horrors, which to the Rajputni are worse than
death. To the doctrines of Christianity Europe owes the boon of
protection to the helpless and the fair, who are [640] comparatively
safe amidst the vicissitudes of war; to which security the chivalry of
the Middle Ages doubtless contributed. But it is singular that a nation
so refined, so scrupulous in its ideas with regard to females, as the
Rajput, should not have entered into some national compact to abandon
such proof of success as the bondage[4.24.10] of the sex. We can enter
into the feeling, and applaud the deed, which ensured the preservation
of their honour by the fatal johar, when the foe was the brutalized
Tatar. But the practice was common in the international wars of the
Rajputs; and I possess numerous inscriptions (on stone and on brass)
which record as the first token of victory the captive wives of the
foeman. When “the mother of Sisera looked out of the window, and cried
through the lattice, Why tarry the wheels of his chariot—have they not
sped? have they not divided the prey; to every man a damsel or
two?”[4.24.11] we have a perfect picture of the Rajput mother expecting
her son from the foray.

The Jewish law with regard to female captives was perfectly analogous to
that of Manu; both declare them “lawful prize,” and both Moses and Manu
establish rules sanctioning the marriage of such captives with the
captors. “When a girl is made captive by her lover, after a victory over
her kinsman,” marriage “is permitted by law.”[4.24.12] That forcible
marriage in the Hindu law termed Rakshasa, namely, “the seizure of a
maiden by force from her house while she weeps and calls for assistance,
after her kinsman and friends have been slain in battle,”[4.24.13] is
the counterpart of the ordinance regarding the usage of a captive in the
Pentateuch,[4.24.14] excepting the “shaving of the head,” which is the
sign of complete slavery with the Hindu.[4.24.15] When Hector,
anticipating his fall, predicts the fate which awaits Andromache, he
draws a forcible picture of the misery of the Rajput; but the latter,
instead of a lachrymose and enervating harangue as he prepared for the
battle with the same chance of defeat, would have spared her the pain of
plying the “Argive loom” by her death. To prevent such degradation, the
brave [641] Rajput has recourse to the johar, or immolation of every
female of the family: nor can we doubt that, educated as are the females
of that country, they gladly embrace such a refuge from pollution. Who
would not be a Rajput in such a case? The very term widow (_rand_) is
used in common parlance as one of reproach.[4.24.16]

Manu commands that whoever accosts a woman shall do so by the title of
“sister,”[4.24.17] and that “way must be made for her, even as for the
aged, for a priest, a prince, or a bridegroom”; and in the admirable
text on the laws of hospitality, he ordains that “pregnant women,
brides, and damsels shall have food before all the other
guests”[4.24.18]; which, with various other texts, appears to indicate a
time when women were less than now objects of restraint; a custom
attributable to the paramount dominion of the Muhammadans, from whose
rigid system the Hindus have borrowed. But so many conflicting texts are
to be found in the pages of Manu, that we may pronounce the compilation
never to have been the work of the same legislator: from whose dicta we
may select with equal facility texts tending to degrade as to exalt the
sex. For the following he would meet with many plaudits: “Let women be
constantly supplied with ornaments at festivals and jubilees, for if the
wife be not elegantly attired, she will not exhilarate her husband. A
wife gaily adorned, the whole house is embellished.”[4.24.19] In the
following text he pays an unequivocal compliment to her power: “A female
is able to draw from the right path in this life, not a fool only, but
even a sage, and can lead him in subjection to desire or to wrath.” With
this acknowledgment from the very fountain of authority, we have some
ground for asserting that _les femmes font les mœurs_, even in
Rajputana; and that though immured and invisible, their influence on
society is not less certain than if they moved in the glare of open day.

=Position of Rājput Women.=—Most erroneous ideas have been formed of the
Hindu female from the pictures drawn by those who never left the banks
of the Ganges. They are represented [642] as degraded beings, and that
not one in many thousands can even read. I would ask such travellers
whether they know the name of Rajput, for there are few of the lowest
chieftains whose daughters are not instructed both to read and write;
though the customs of the country requiring much form in epistolary
writing, only the signature is made to letters. But of their intellect,
and knowledge of mankind, whoever has had to converse with a Rajputni
guardian of her son’s rights, must draw a very different
conclusion.[4.24.20] Though excluded by the Salic law of India from
governing, they are declared to be fit regents during minority; and the
history of India is filled with anecdotes of able and valiant females in
this capacity.[4.24.21]

=Rājput Character.=—The more prominent traits of character will be found
disseminated throughout the annals; we shall therefore omit the
customary summaries of nationalities, those fanciful debtor and creditor
accounts, with their balanced amount, favourable or unfavourable
according to the disposition of the observer; and from the anecdotes
through these pages leave the reader to form his own judgement of the
Rajput. High courage, patriotism, loyalty, honour, hospitality, and
simplicity are qualities which must at once be conceded to them; and if
we cannot vindicate them from charges to which human nature in every
clime is obnoxious; if we are compelled to admit the deterioration of
moral dignity, from the continual inroads of, and their consequent
collision with, rapacious conquerors; we must yet admire the quantum of
virtue which even oppression and bad example have failed to banish. The
meaner vices of deceit and falsehood, which the delineators of national
character attach to the Asiatic without distinction, I deny to be
universal with the Rajputs, though some tribes may have been obliged
from position to use these shields of the weak against continuous
oppression. Every court in Rajasthan has [643] its characteristic
epithet; and there is none held more contemptible than the affix of
_jhutha darbar_, ‘the lying court,’ applied to Jaipur; while the most
comprehensive measure of praise is the simple epithet of
_sachha_,[4.24.22] ‘the truth-teller.’ Again, there are many shades
between deceit and dissimulation: the one springs from natural
depravity; the other may be assumed, as with the Rajput, in
self-defence. But their laws, the mode of administering them, and the
operation of external causes, must be attentively considered before we
can form a just conclusion of the springs which regulate the character
of a people. We must examine the opinions of the competent of past days,
when political independence yet remained to the Rajputs, and not found
our judgment of a nation upon a superficial knowledge of individuals. To
this end I shall avail myself of the succinct but philosophical remarks
of Abu-l-fazl, the wise minister of the wise Akbar, which are equally
applicable to mankind at large, as to the particular people we are
treating of. “If,” he says, speaking of the Hindus, “a diligent
investigator were to examine the temper and disposition of the people of
each tribe, he would find every individual differing in some respect or
other. Some among them are virtuous in the highest degree, and others
carry vice to the greatest excess. They are renowned for wisdom,
disinterested friendship, obedience to their superiors, and many other
virtues: but, at the same time, there are among them men whose hearts
are obdurate and void of shame, turbulent spirits, who for the merest
trifle will commit the greatest outrages.”[4.24.23]

Again: “The Hindus are religious, affable, courteous to strangers,
cheerful, enamoured of knowledge, lovers of justice, able in business,
grateful, admirers of truth, and of unbounded fidelity in all their
dealings. Their character shines brightest in adversity. Their soldiers
(the Rajputs) know not what it is to fly from the field of battle; but
when the success of the combat becomes doubtful, they dismount from
their horses, and throw away their lives in payment of the debt of

I shall conclude this chapter with a sketch of their familiar habits,
and a few of their indoor and outdoor recreations.

=Introduction of Melons, Grapes, Tobacco, Opium: the Use of Opium.=—To
Babur, the founder of the Mogul dynasty, India is indebted for the
introduction [644] of its melons and grapes; and to his grandson
Jahangir for tobacco.[4.24.25] For the introduction of opium we have no
date, and it is not even mentioned in the poems of Chand.[4.24.26] This
pernicious plant has robbed the Rajput of half his virtues; and while it
obscures these, it heightens his vices, giving to his natural bravery a
character of insane ferocity, and to the countenance, which would
otherwise beam with intelligence, an air of imbecility. Like all
stimulants, its effects are magical for a time; but the reaction is not
less certain: and the faded form or amorphous bulk too often attest the
debilitating influence of a drug which alike debases mind and body. In
the more ancient epics we find no mention of the poppy-juice as now
used, though the Rajput has at all times been accustomed to his _madhava
ra piyala_, or ‘intoxicating cup.’ The essence,[4.24.27] whether of
grain, of roots, or of flowers, still welcomes the guest, but is
secondary to the opiate. _Amal lar khana_, ‘to eat opium together,’ is
the most inviolable pledge; and an agreement ratified by this ceremony
is stronger than any adjuration. If a Rajput pays a visit, the first
question is, _amal khaya_? ‘have you had your opiate?’—_amal khao_,
‘take your opiate.’ On a birthday, when all the chiefs convene to
congratulate their brother on another ‘knot to his years,’ the large cup
is brought forth, a lump of opiate put therein, upon which water is
poured, and by the aid of a stick a solution is made, to which each
helps his neighbour, not with a glass, but with the hollow of his hand
held to his mouth. To judge by the wry faces on this occasion, none can
like it, and to get rid of the nauseous taste, comfit-balls are handed
round. It is curious to observe the animation it inspires; a Rajput is
fit for nothing without his _amal_, and I have often dismissed their men
of business to refresh their intellects by a dose, for when its effects
are dissipating they become mere logs [645].[4.24.28] Opium to the
Rajput is more necessary than food, and a suggestion to the Rana to tax
it highly was most unpopular. From the rising generation the author
exacted promises that they would resist initiation in this vice, and
many grew up in happy ignorance of the taste of opium. He will be the
greatest friend to Rajasthan who perseveres in eradicating the evil. The
valley of Udaipur is a poppy garden, of every hue and variety, whence
the Hindu Sri may obtain a coronet more variegated than ever adorned the
Isis of the Nile.

=Pledge by eating Opium.=—A pledge once given by the Rajput, whether
ratified by the “eating opium together,” “an exchange of turbans,” or
the more simple act of “giving the right hand,” is maintained inviolable
under all circumstances.

=Hunting and other Sports.=—Their grand hunts have been described. The
Rajput is fond of his dog and his gun. The former aids him in pulling
down the boar or hare, and with the stalking-horse he will toil for
hours after the deer. The greater chieftains have their _ramnas_ or
preserves, where poaching would be summarily punished, and where the
slaughter of all kinds of beasts, elk, hog, hyena, tiger, boar, deer,
wild-dog, wolf, or hare, is indiscriminate. Riding in the ring with the
lance in tournaments, without the spike, the point being guarded;
defence of the sword against the lance, with every variety of “noble
horsemanship,” such as would render the most expert in Europe an easy
prey to the active Rajput, are some of the chief exercises. Firing at a
mark with a matchlock, in which they attain remarkable accuracy of aim;
and in some parts of the country throwing a dart or javelin from
horseback, are favourite amusements. The practice of the bow is likewise
a main source of pastime, and in the manner there adopted it requires
both dexterity and strength[4.24.29] [646]. The Rajput is not satisfied
if he cannot bury his arrow either in the earthern target, or in the
buffalo, to the feather. The use of the bow is hallowed; Arjuna’s bow in
the “great war,” and that of the Chauhan king, Prithiraj, with which the
former gained Draupadi and the latter the fair Sanjogta, are
immortalized like that of Ulysses. In these martial exercises the
youthful Rajput is early initiated, and that the sight of blood may be
familiar, he is instructed, before he has strength to wield a sword, to
practise with his boy’s scimitar on the heads of lambs and kids. His
first successful essay on the animals ‘_ferae naturae_’ is a source of
congratulation to his whole family.[4.24.30] In this manner the spirit
of chivalry is continually fed, for everything around him speaks of arms
and strife. His very amusements are warlike; and the dance and the song,
the burthen of which is the record of his successful gallantry, so far
from enervating, serve as fresh incitements to his courage.

=Wrestling.=—The exhibition of the Jethis, or wrestlers,[4.24.31] is
another mode of killing time. It is a state concern for every prince or
chief to entertain a certain number of these champions of the glove.
Challenges are sent by the most celebrated from one court to another;
and the event of the _akhara_, as the arena is termed, is looked to with
great anxiety.

=Armouries.=—No prince or chief is without his _silah-khana_, or
armoury, where he passes hours in viewing and arranging his arms. Every
favourite weapon, whether sword, matchlock, spear, dagger, or bow, has a
distinctive epithet. The keeper of the armoury is one of the most
confidential officers about the person of the prince. These arms are
beautiful and costly. The _sirohi_,[4.24.32] or slightly curved blade,
is formed like that of Damascus, and is the greatest favourite of all
the variety of sabres throughout Rajputana. The long cut-and-thrust,
like the Andrea Ferrara, is not uncommon; nor the _khanda_, or
double-edged sword. The matchlocks both of Lahore and the country are
often highly finished and inlaid with mother-of-pearl and gold: those of
Bundi are the best. The shield of the rhinoceros-hide offers the best
resistance, and is often ornamented with animals, beautifully painted,
and enamelled in gold and silver. The bow is of buffalo-horn, and the
arrows of reed, and barbed in a variety of fashions, as the crescent,
the trident, the snake’s tongue, and other fanciful forms.

=Sheodān Singh. Music.=—The Maharaja Sheodan Singh (whose family are
heirs presumptive to the throne) was one of my constant visitors; and
the title of ‘adopted brother,’ which he conferred upon me, allowed him
to make his visits unreasonably long. The Maharaja had many excellent
qualities. He was the best shot in Mewar; he was well read in the
classic literature of his nation; deeply versed in the secrets of the
chronicles, not only of Mewar but of all Rajwara; conversant with all
the mysteries of the bard, and could improvise on every occasion. He was
a proficient in musical science [647], and could discourse most fluently
on the whole theory of Sangita, which comprehends vocal and instrumental
harmony. He could explain each of the _ragas_, or musical modes, which
issued from the five mouths of Siva and his consort Mena, together with
the almost endless variations of the _ragas_, to each of which are
allotted six consorts or _raginis_. He had attached to his suite the
first vocalists of Mewar, and occasionally favoured me by letting them
sing at my house. The chief cantatrice had a superb voice, a contralto
of great extent, and bore the familiar appellation of ‘Catalani.’ Her
execution of all the _basant_ or ‘spring-songs,’ and the _megh_ or
‘cloud-songs’ of the monsoon, which are full of melody, was perfect. But
she had a rival in a singer from Ujjain, and we made a point of having
them together, that emulation might excite to excellence. The chieftain
of Salumbar, the chief of the Saktawats, and others, frequently joined
these parties, as well as the Maharaja: for all are partial to the dance
and the song, during which conversation flows unrestrained. Saadatu-lla,
whose execution on the guitar would have secured applause even at the
Philharmonic, commanded mute attention when he played a _tan_ or
symphony, or when, taking any of the simple _tappas_ of Ujjain as a
theme, he wandered through a succession of voluntaries. In summer these
little parties were held on the terrace or the house-top, where carpets
were spread under an awning, while the cool breezes of the lake gave
life after the exhaustion of a day passed under 96° of Fahrenheit. The
subjects of their songs are various, love, glory, satire, etc. I was
invited to similar assemblies by many of the chiefs; though none were so
intellectual as those of the Maharaja. On birthdays or other festivals
the chief Bardai often appears, or the bard of any other tribe who may
happen to be present. Then all is mute attention, broken only by the
emphatic “_wah, wah!_” the measured nod of the head, or fierce curl of
the moustache, in token of approbation or the reverse.[4.24.33]

The Maharaja’s talents for amplification were undoubted, and by more
than one of his friends this failing was attributed to his long
residence at the court of Jaipur, whose cognomen will not have been
forgotten. He had one day been amusing us with feats of his youth, his
swimming from island to island, and [648] bestriding the alligators for
an excursion.[4.24.34] Like Tell, he had placed a mark on his son’s head
and hit it successfully. He could kill an eagle on the wing, and divide
a ball on the edge of a knife, the knife itself unseen. While running on
in this manner, my features betraying some incredulity, he insisted on
redeeming his word. A day was accordingly appointed, and though
labouring under an ague, he came with his favourite matchlocks. The more
dangerous experiment was desisted from, and he commenced by dividing the
ball on the knife. This he placed perpendicularly in the centre of an
earthen vessel filled with water; and taking his station at about twenty
paces, perforated the centre of the vessel, and allowed you to take up
the fragments of the ball; having previously permitted you to load the
piece, and examine the vessel, which he did not once approach himself.
Another exhibition was striking an orange from a pole without
perforating it. Again, he gave the option of loading to a bystander, and
retreating a dozen paces, he knocked an orange off untouched by the
ball, which, according to a preliminary proviso, could not be found: the
orange was not even discoloured by the powder. He was an adept also at
chess[4.24.35] and chaupar, and could carry on a conversation by
stringing flowers in a peculiar manner. If he plumed himself upon his
pretensions, his vanity was always veiled under a demeanour full of
courtesy and grace; and Maharaja Sheodan Singh would be esteemed a
well-bred and well-informed man at the most polished court of Europe.

Every chief has his band, vocal and instrumental; but Sindhia, some
years since, carried away the most celebrated vocalists of Udaipur. The
Rajputs are all partial to music. The tappa is the favourite measure.
Its chief character is plaintive simplicity; and it is analogous to the
Scotch, or perhaps still more to the Norman.[4.24.36]

The Rana, who is a great patron of the art, has a small band of
musicians, whose only instrument is the _shahna_, or hautboy. They
played their national [649] tappas with great taste and feeling; and
these strains, wafted from the lofty terrace of the palace in the
silence of the night, produced a sensation of delight not unmixed with
pain, which its peculiarly melancholy character excites. The Rana has
also a few flute or flageolet players, who discourse most eloquent
music. Indeed, we may enumerate this among the principal amusements of
the Rajputs; and although it would be deemed indecorous to be a
performer, the science forms a part of education.[4.24.37]

Who that has marched in the stillness of night through the mountainous
regions of Central India, and heard the warder sound the _turai_ from
his turreted abode, perched like an eyrie on the mountain-top, can ever
forget its graduated intensity of sound, or the emphatic _ham! ham!_
“all’s well,” which follows the lengthened blast of the cornet
reverberating in every recess.[4.24.38]

=Bagpipes.=—A species of bagpipe, so common to all the Celtic races of
Europe, is not unknown to the Rajputs. It is called the
_mashak_,[4.24.39] but is only the rudiment of that instrument whose
peculiar influence on the physical, through the moral agency of man, is
described by our own master-bard. They have likewise the double
flageolet; but in the same ratio of perfection to that of Europe as the
_mashak_ to the heart-stirring pipe of the north. As to their lutes,
guitars, and all the varieties of tintinnabulants (as Dr. Johnson would
call them), it would fatigue without interesting the reader to enumerate

=Literature among the Rajputs. Observatories.=—We now come to the
literary attainments of the lords of Rajasthan, of whom there is none
without sufficient clerkship to read his grant or agreement for
_rakhwali_ or blackmail; and none either so ignorant, or so proud, as
the boasted ancestral wisdom of England, whose barons could not even
sign their names to the great charter of their liberties. The Rana of
Udaipur has unlimited command of [650] his pen, and his letters are
admirable; but we may say of him nearly what was remarked of Charles the
Second—“he never wrote a foolish thing, and seldom did a wise one.” The
familiar epistolary correspondence of the princes and nobles of
Rajasthan would exhibit abundant testimony of their powers of mind: they
are sprinkled with classical allusions, and evince that knowledge of
mankind which constant collision in society must produce. A collection
of these letters, which exist in the archives of every principality,
would prove that the princes of this country are upon a par with the
rest of mankind, not only in natural understanding, but, taking their
opportunities into account, even in its cultivation. The prince who in
Europe could quote Hesiod and Homer with the freedom that the Rana does
on all occasions Vyasa and Valmiki, would be accounted a prodigy; and
there is not a divine who could make application of the ordinances of
Moses with more facility than the Rana of those of their great lawgiver
Manu. When they talk of the wisdom of their ancestors, it is not a mere
figure of speech. The instruction of their princes is laid down in rules
held sacred, and must have been far more onerous than any system of
European university education, for scarcely a branch of human knowledge
is omitted. But the cultivation of the mind, and the arts of polished
life, must always flourish in the ratio of a nation’s prosperity, and
from the decline of the one, we may date the deterioration of the other
with the Rajput. The astronomer has now no patron to look to for reward;
there is no Jai Singh to erect such stupendous observatories as he built
at Delhi, Benares, Ujjain, and at his own capital;[4.24.40] to construct
globes and armillary spheres, of which, according to their own and our
system, the Kotah prince has two, each three feet in diameter. The same
prince (Jai Singh) collated De la Hire’s tables with those of Ulugh Beg,
and presented the result to the last emperor of Delhi, worthy the name
of the Great Mogul. To these tables he gave the name of _Zij Muhammad
Shahi_. It was Jai Singh who, as already mentioned, sought to establish
sumptuary laws throughout the nation, to regulate marriages, and thereby
prevent infanticide; and who left his name to the capital he founded,
the first in Rajasthan.

But we cannot march over fifty miles of country without observing traces
of the genius, talent, and wealth of past days: though—whether the more
abstruse sciences, or the lighter arts which embellish life—all are now
fast disappearing [651]. Whether in the tranquillity secured to them by
the destruction of their predatory foes, these arts and sciences may
revive, and the nation regain its elevated tone, is a problem which time
alone can solve.

=Household Furniture.=—In their household economy, their furniture and
decorations, they remain unchanged during the lapse of a thousand years.
No chairs, no couches adorn their sitting apartments, though the painted
and gilded ceiling may be supported by columns of serpentine, and the
walls one mass of mirrors, marble, or china;—nothing but a soft carpet,
hidden by a white cloth, on which the guests seat themselves according
to rank. In fine, the quaint description of the chaplain to the first
embassy which England sent to India, more than two hundred years ago,
applies now, as it probably will two hundred years hence. “And now for
the furniture the greatest men have in them [their houses], it is _curta
supellex_, very little, they (the rooms) being not beautified with
hangings, nor with anything besides to line their walls; for they have
no chairs, stools, couches, tables, beds enclosed with canopies, or
curtains, in any of their rooms. And the truth is, that if they had
them, the extreme heat would forbid the use of many of them; all their
bravery is upon their floors, on which they spread most excellent

=Dress.=—It were useless to expatiate on dress, either male or female,
the fashion varying in each province and tribe, though the texture and
materials are everywhere the same: cotton in summer, and quilted chintz
or broadcloth in winter. The ladies have only three articles of
_parure_; the _ghaghra_, or ‘petticoat’; the _kanchuli_, ‘or corset’;
and the _dopatta_, or ‘scarf,’ which is occasionally thrown over [652]
the head as a veil. Ornaments are without number. For the men, trousers
of every shape and calibre, a tunic girded with a ceinture, and a scarf,
form the wardrobe of every Rajput. The turban is the most important part
of the dress, and is the unerring mark of the tribe; the form and
fashion are various, and its decorations differ according to time and
circumstances. The _balaband_, or ‘silken fillet,’ was once valued as
the mark of the sovereign’s favour, and was tantamount to the courtly
“orders” of Europe. The colour of the turban and tunic varies with the
season; and the changes are rung upon crimson, saffron, and purple,
though white is by far the most common. Their shoes are mere slippers,
and sandals are worn by the common classes. Boots are yet used in
hunting or war, made of chamois leather, of which material the warrior
often has a doublet, being more commodious, and less oppressive, than
armour. The dagger or poniard is inseparable from the girdle.

=Cookery, Medicine.=—The culinary art will be discussed elsewhere,
together with the medical, which is very low, and usurped by empyrics,
who waste alike the purse and health of the ignorant by the sale of
aphrodisiacs, which are sought after with great avidity. Gums, metals,
minerals, all are compounded, and for one preparation, while the author
was at Udaipur, 7000 rupees (nearly £1000) were expended by the

=Superstitions.=—Their superstitions, incantations, charms, and
phylacteries against danger, mental or bodily, will appear more
appropriately where the subject is incidently introduced [653].


  _To face page 760._


Footnote 4.24.1:

  Manu, _Laws_, v. 157, 160, 161.

Footnote 4.24.2:

  Were all Manu’s maxims on this head collected, and with other good
  authorities, printed, circulated, and supported by Hindu missionaries,
  who might be brought to advocate the abolition of Satiism, some good
  might be effected. Let every text tending to the respectability of
  widowhood be made prominent, and degrade the opponents by enumerating
  the weak points they abound in. Instance the polyandry which prevailed
  among the Pandus, whose high priest Vyasa was an illegitimate branch;
  though above all would be the efficacy of the abolition of polygamy,
  which in the lower classes leaves women destitute, and in the higher
  condemns them to mortification and neglect. Whatever result such a
  course might produce, there can be no danger in the experiment. Such
  sacrifices must operate powerfully on manners; and, barbarous as is
  the custom, yet while it springs from the same principle, it ought to
  improve the condition of women, from the fear that harsh treatment of
  them might defeat the atonement hereafter. Let the advocate for the
  abolition of this practice by the hand of power read attentively Mr.
  Colebrooke’s essay, “On the Duties of a Faithful Hindu Widow,” in the
  fourth volume of the _Asiatic Researches_ [_Essays on the Religion and
  Philosophy of the Hindus_, ed. 1858, p. 70 ff.], to correct the notion
  that there is no adequate religious ordinance for the horrid
  sacrifice. Mr. C. observes (p. 220): “Though an alternative be
  allowed, the Hindu legislators have shown themselves disposed to
  encourage widows to burn themselves with their husband’s corpse.” In
  this paper he will find too many authorities deemed sacred for its
  support; but it is only by knowing the full extent of the prejudices
  and carefully collecting the conflicting authorities, that we can
  provide the means to overcome it. Jahangir legislated for the
  abolition of this practice by successive ordinances. At first he
  commanded that no woman, being mother of a family, should under any
  circumstances be permitted, however willing, to immolate herself; and
  subsequently the prohibition was made entire when the slightest
  compulsion was required, “whatever the assurances of the people might
  be.” The royal commentator records no reaction. We might imitate
  Jahangir, and adopting the partially prohibitive ordinance, forbid the
  sacrifice where there was a family to rear. [The early texts on the
  subject of Sati have been collected by H. H. Wilson, _Essays and
  Lectures chiefly on the Religion of the Hindus_, 1881, ii. 270 ff.
  Also see Max Müller, _Selected Essays on Language, Mythology, and
  Religion_, 1881, i. 332 ff.

Footnote 4.24.3:

  [On Sati shrines and records of their deaths at Bikaner see General G.
  Hervey, _Some Records of Crime_, i. 209 f., 238 ff.]

Footnote 4.24.4:

  The Ghakkars, a Scythic race inhabiting the banks of the Indus, at an
  early period of history were given to infanticide. “It was a custom
  among them,” says Ferishta, “as soon as a female child was born, to
  carry her to the market-place and there proclaim aloud, holding the
  child in one hand and a knife in the other, that any person who wanted
  a wife might now take her; otherwise she was immediately put to death.
  By this means they had more men than women, which occasioned the
  custom of several husbands to one wife. When this wife was visited by
  one of her husbands, she set up a mark at the door, which being
  observed by any of the others who might be coming on the same errand,
  he immediately withdrew till the signal was taken away.”

  [This quotation from Ferishta is taken from Dow (2nd ed. i. 138 f.).
  Compare Briggs’ trans., i. 183 f. This account is denied by the
  present members of the tribe (Rose, _Glossary_, ii. 275). Much that is
  said about them refers to the Khokhar tribe (Elliot-Dowson v. 166,

Footnote 4.24.5:

  Could they be induced to adopt the custom of the ancient Marsellois,
  infanticide might cease: “Marseille fut la plus sage des républiques
  de son temps: les dots ne pourraient passer cents écus en argent, et
  cinq en habits, dit Strabon” (_De l’Esprit des Lois_, chap. xv. liv.
  v. 21).

Footnote 4.24.6:

  [Dr. L. P. Tesitori writes that the true form of this word is _visar_,
  ‘satire,’ which has no connexion with _vis_, ‘poison.’]

Footnote 4.24.7:

  [This term and the custom of extravagant gifts at marriages still
  prevail. _Pasārna_ means ‘to scatter, display’ (Russell, _Tribes and
  Castes Central Provinces_, ii. 256).]

Footnote 4.24.8:

  [_Asiatic Researches_, iv. 353 f.; _Calcutta Review_, i. 377.]

Footnote 4.24.9:

  [For recent measures proposed for reduction of marriage expenses, see
  Risley, _The People of India_, 2nd ed. 195 ff.]

Footnote 4.24.10:

  _Banda_ is ‘a bondsman’ in Persian; _Bandi_, ‘a female slave’ in
  Hindi. [These words have no connexion with “bondage.”]

Footnote 4.24.11:

  Judges v. 28-30.

Footnote 4.24.12:

  Manu, _Laws_, iii. 26.

Footnote 4.24.13:

  Manu, _Laws_, iii. 33.

Footnote 4.24.14:

  “When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the Lord thy
  God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them
  captive, and seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a
  desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife; then thou
  shalt bring her home to thine house, and she shall shave her head, and
  pare her nails; and she shall put the raiment of her captivity from
  off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and
  her mother a full month: and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and
  be her husband, and she shall be thy wife” (Deut. xxi. 10, 11, 12,

Footnote 4.24.15:

  [On head-shaving as a mark of slavery see _Jātaka_, Cambridge trans.,
  v. 125; Anantha Krishna Iyer, _Tribes and Castes of Cochin_, ii. 337;
  _BG_, ix. Part i. 232.]

Footnote 4.24.16:

  I remember in my subaltern days, and wanderings through countries then
  little known, one of my Rajput soldiers at the well, impatient for
  water, asked a woman for the rope and bucket by the uncivil term of
  _rand_: “_Main Rajputni che_,” ‘I am a Rajputni,’ she replied in the
  Hara dialect, to which tribe she belonged, “_aur Rajput ki ma cho_,”
  ‘and the mother of Rajputs.’ At the indignant reply the hands of the
  brave Kalyan were folded, and he asked her forgiveness by the
  endearing and respectful epithet of “mother.” It was soon granted, and
  filling his brass vessel, she dismissed him with the epithet of “son,”
  and a gentle reproof. Kalyan was himself a Rajput, and a bolder lives
  not, if he still exists; this was in 1807, and in 1817 he gained his
  sergeant’s knot, as one of the thirty-two firelocks of my guard, who
  led the attack, and defeated a camp of fifteen hundred Pindaris.

Footnote 4.24.17:

  _Laws_, ii. 129.

Footnote 4.24.18:

  _Ibid._ iii. 114.

Footnote 4.24.19:

  _Ibid._ iii. 57, 60, 61, 62, 63.

Footnote 4.24.20:

  I have conversed for hours with the Bundi queen-mother on the affairs
  of her government and welfare of her infant son, to whom I was left
  guardian by his dying father. She had adopted me as her brother; but
  the conversation was always in the presence of a third person in her
  confidence, and a curtain separated us. Her sentiments showed
  invariably a correct and extensive knowledge, which was equally
  apparent in her letters, of which I had many. I could give many
  similar instances.

Footnote 4.24.21:

  Ferishta in his history [ii. 217 ff.] gives an animated picture of
  Durgavati, queen of Garha, defending the rights of her infant son
  against Akbar’s ambition. Like another Boadicea, she headed her army,
  and fought a desperate battle with Asaf Khan, in which she was wounded
  and defeated; but scorning flight, or to survive the loss of
  independence, she, like the antique Roman in such a predicament, slew
  herself on the field of battle. [For Durgāvati see Badaoni, trans. W.
  H. Lowe, ii. 65; Elliot-Dowson v. 169, 288, vi. 118 ff.; Sleeman,
  _Rambles_, 190 f.

  Whoever desires to judge of the comparative fidelity of the
  translations of this writer, by Dow [ii. 224 ff.] and Briggs, cannot
  do better than refer to this very passage. The former has clothed it
  in all the trappings of Ossianic decoration: the latter gives “a plain
  unvarnished tale,” which ought to be the aim of every translator.

Footnote 4.24.22:

  _Sachha_ is very comprehensive; in common parlance it is the opposite
  of ‘untrue’; but it means ‘loyal, upright, just.’

Footnote 4.24.23:

  [_Āīn_, iii. 114.]

Footnote 4.24.24:

  [_Ibid._ iii. 8.]

Footnote 4.24.25:

  The autobiography of both these noble Tatar princes are singular
  compositions, and may be given as standards of Eastern intellectual
  acquirement. They minutely note the progress of refinement and luxury.
  [The sweet melon was probably introduced from Persia, but some
  varieties of the plant seem to be indigenous. India, however, has a
  strong claim to ancient cultivation of the vine. Doubtless to the
  Portuguese may be assigned the credit of having conveyed both the
  tobacco plant and the knowledge of its properties to India and China
  (Watt, _Econ. Dict._ ii. 626, 628, vi. Part iv. 263, v. 361; _Id.
  Comm. Prod._ 437 f., 796, 1112; Yule, _Hobson-Jobson_, 2nd ed. 924

Footnote 4.24.26:

  [If the Greeks discovered opium, the Arabs were chiefly concerned in
  disseminating in the East the knowledge of the plant and its uses
  (Watt, _Econ. Dict._ vi. Part i. 24 ff.; _Comm. Prod._ 846).]

Footnote 4.24.27:

  _‘Araq_, ‘essence’; whence _arrack_ and _rack_.

Footnote 4.24.28:

  Even in the midst of conversation, the eye closes and the head nods as
  the exciting cause is dissipating, and the countenance assumes a
  perfect vacuity of expression. Many a chief has taken his siesta in
  his chair while on a visit to me: an especial failing of my good
  friend Raj Kalyan of Sadri, the descendant of the brave Shama, who won
  “the right hand” of the prince at Haldighat. The lofty turban worn by
  the Raj, which distinguishes this tribe (the Jhala), was often on the
  point of tumbling into my lap, as he unconsciously nodded. When it is
  inconvenient to dissolve the opium, the chief carries it in his
  pocket, and presents it, as we would a pinch of snuff in Europe. In my
  subaltern days the chieftain of Senthal, in Jaipur, on paying me a
  visit, presented me with a piece of opium, which I took and laid on
  the table. Observing that I did not eat it, he said he should like to
  try the _Farangi ka amal_, ‘the opiate of the Franks.’ I sent him a
  bottle of powerful Schiedam, and to his inquiry as to the quantity of
  the dose, I told him he might take from an eighth to the half, as he
  desired exhilaration or oblivion. We were to have hunted the next
  morning; but having no sign of my friend, I was obliged to march
  without ascertaining the effect of the barter of _aphim_ for the
  waters of Friesland; though I have no doubt that he found them quite
  Lethean. [The Rājputs ascribed a divine power to opium owing to the
  mental exhilaration caused by the drug: hence the taking of it with a
  chief was a form of solemn communion, and a renewal of the pledge of
  loyalty (Russell, _Tribes and Castes, Central Provinces_, i. 170, iii.
  164, iv. 425). For opium drinking among Rājputs see Malcolm, _Memoir,
  Central India_, 2nd ed. ii. 146 f.; Forbes, _Rāsmāla_, 557).]

Footnote 4.24.29:

  [The use of the bow has now disappeared except among forest tribes.
  For its use in Mogul times see Irvine, _Army of the Indian Moghuls_,
  91 ff.]

Footnote 4.24.30:

  The author has now before him a letter written by the queen-mother of
  Bundi desiring his rejoicings on Lalji, ‘the beloved’s,’ _coup
  d’essai_ on a deer, which he had followed most pertinaciously to the
  death. On this occasion a court was held, and all the chiefs presented
  offerings and congratulations.

Footnote 4.24.31:

  [For the Jethi wrestlers in S. India see Thurston, _Tribes and
  Castes_, ii. 456 ff.]

Footnote 4.24.32:

  [It takes its name from the town where they were made. The blade is
  slightly curved, one specimen being rather narrower and lighter than
  the ordinary sword (_talwār_), (Egerton, _Handbook of Indian Arms_,
  1880, p. 105; Irvine, _Army of the Indian Moghuls_, 76 f.).]

Footnote 4.24.33:

  Poetic impromptus pass on these occasions unrestricted by the fear of
  the critic, though the long yawn now and then should have given the
  hint to my friend the Maharaja that his verses wanted Attic. But he
  had certainly talent, and he did not conceal his light, which shone
  the stronger from the darkness that surrounded him: for poverty is not
  the school of genius, and the trade of the schoolmaster has ever been
  the least lucrative in a capital where rapine has ruled.

Footnote 4.24.34:

  There are two of these alligators quite familiar to the inhabitants of
  Udaipur, who come when called “from the vasty deep” for food; and I
  have often exasperated them by throwing an inflated bladder, which the
  monsters greedily received, only to dive away in angry disappointment.
  It was on these that my friend affirmed he had ventured.

Footnote 4.24.35:

  _Chaturanga_, so called from imitating the formation of an army. The
  ‘four’ (_chatur_) ‘bodied’ (_anga_) array; or elephants, chariots,
  horse, and foot. His chief antagonist at chess was a blind man of the
  city. [_Chaupar_ is played with oblong dice on a board with two
  transverse bars in the form of a cross, like _chausar_ and _pachīsī_.]

Footnote 4.24.36:

  The _tappa_ belongs to the very extremity of India, being indigenous
  as far as the Indus and the countries watered by its arms; and though
  the peculiar measure is common in Rajasthan, the prefix of _panjabi_
  shows its origin. I have listened at Caen to the viola or hurdy-gurdy,
  till I could have fancied myself in Mewar.

Footnote 4.24.37:

  Chand remarks of his hero, the Chauhan, that he was “master of the
  art,” both vocal and instrumental. Whether profane music was ever
  common may be doubted; but sacred music was a part of early education
  with the sons of kings. Rama and his brothers were celebrated for the
  harmonious execution of episodes from the grand epic, the Ramayana.
  The sacred canticles of Jayadeva were set to music, and apparently by
  himself, and are yet sung by the Chaubes. The inhabitants of the
  various monastic establishments chant their addresses to the deity;
  and I have listened with delight to the modulated cadences of the
  hermits, singing the praises of Pataliswara from their pinnacled abode
  of Abu. It would be injustice to touch incidentally on the merits of
  the minstrel Dholi, who sings the warlike compositions of the sacred
  Bardai of Rajasthan.

Footnote 4.24.38:

  The _turai_ is the sole instrument of the many of the trumpet kind
  which is not dissonant. The Kotah prince has the largest band,
  perhaps, in these countries; instruments of all kinds—stringed, wind,
  and percussion. But as it is formed by rule, in which the sacred and
  shrill conch-shell takes precedence, it must be allowed that it is
  anything but harmonious.

Footnote 4.24.39:

  [_Mashak_ is the name of the leather water-bag. One of the late Rājas
  of Jind in the Panjāb had a bagpipe band, the musicians wearing kilts
  and pink leggings to make them look like their Highland originals. The
  Yanādis, a forest tribe in Madras, play the bagpipe (Thurston, _Tribes
  and Castes_, vii. 431).]

Footnote 4.24.40:

  [For these observatories see A. ff. Garrett, Pandit Chandradhar
  Guleri, _The Jaipur Observatory and its Builder_, Allahabad, 1902;
  Fanshawe, _Delhi Past and Present_, 247 f.; M. A. Sherring, _The
  Sacred City of the Hindus_, 131 ff.; _Asiatic Researches_, v. 177 ff.]

Footnote 4.24.41:

  [E. Terry, _A Voyage to East India_, ed. 1777, p. 185.] Those who wish
  for an opinion “of the most excellent moralities which are to be
  observed amongst the people of these nations” cannot do better than
  read the 14th section of the observant, intelligent, and tolerant
  chaplain, who is more just, at least on one point, than the modern
  missionary, who denies to the Hindu filial affection. “And here I
  shall insert another most needful particular to my present purpose
  which deserves a most high commendation to be given unto that people
  in general, how poor and mean soever they be; and that is, the great
  exemplary care they manifest in their piety to their parents, that
  notwithstanding they serve for very little, but five shillings a moon
  for their whole livelihood and subsistence, yet if their parents be in
  want, they will impart, at the least, half of that little towards
  their necessities, choosing rather to want themselves than that their
  parents should suffer need.” It is in fact one of the first precepts
  of their religion. The Chaplain thus concludes his chapter “On the
  Moralities of the Hindu” [232 f.]: “O! what a sad thing is it for
  Christians to come short of Indians, even in moralities; come short of
  those, who themselves believe to come short of heaven!” The Chaplain
  closes his interesting and instructive work with the subject of
  Conversion, which is as remote from accomplishment at this day as it
  was at that distant period. “Well known it is that the Jesuits there,
  who, like the Pharisees that would ‘compass sea and land to make one
  proselyte’ (Matt. xxiii. 15), have sent into Christendom many large
  reports of their great conversions of infidels in East India. But all
  these boastings are but reports; the truth is, that they have there
  spilt the precious water of Baptism upon some few faces, working upon
  the necessity of some poor men, who for want of means, which they give
  them, are contented to wear crucifixes; but for want of knowledge in
  the doctrine of Christianity are only in name Christians.”[4.24.41.A]

Footnote 4.24.41.A:

  _A Voyage to East India_, 427.



                               CHAPTER 25

=Leaving Udaipur.=—_October 11, 1819._—Two years had nearly sped since
we entered the valley of Udaipur, the most diversified and most romantic
spot on the continent of India. In all this time none of us had
penetrated beyond the rocky barrier which formed the limit of our
horizon, affording the vision a sweep of six miles radius. Each hill and
dale, tower and tree, had become familiar to us; every altar, cenotaph,
and shrine had furnished its legend, till tradition was exhausted. The
ruins were explored, their inscriptions deciphered, each fantastic
pinnacle had a name, and the most remarkable chieftains and servants of
the court had epithets assigned to them, expressive of some quality or
characteristic. We had our ‘Red Reaver,’ our ‘Roderic Dhu,’ and a
‘Falstaff,’ at the court; our ‘Catalani,’ our ‘Vestris,’ in the song or
the ballet. We had our palace in the city, our cutter on the lake, our
villa in the woods, our fairy-islands in the waters; streams to angle
in, deer to [654] shoot, much, in short, to please the eye and gratify
the taste:—yet did ennui intrude, and all panted to escape from the
“happy valley,” to see what was in the world beyond the mountains. In
all these twenty moons, the gigantic portals of Debari, which guard the
entrance of the Girwa,[4.25.1] had not once creaked on their hinges for
our egress; and though from incessant occupation I had wherewithal to
lessen the _taedium vitae_, my companions not having such resources, it
was in vain that, like the sage Imlac, I urged them not to feel dull in
this “blissful captivity”: the scenery had become hideous, and I verily
believe had there been any pinion-maker in the capital of the Sesodias,
they would have essayed a flight, though it might have terminated in the
lake. Never did Rasselas sigh more for escape. At length the day
arrived, and although the change was to be from all that constitutes the
enchantments of vision, from wood and water, dale and mountain, verdure
and foliage, to the sterile plains of the sandy desert of Marwar, it was
sufficient that it was change. Our party was composed of Captain Waugh,
Lieutenant Carey, and Dr. Duncan, with the whole of the escort,
consisting of two companies of foot and sixty of Skinner’s Horse, all
alike delighted to quit the valley where each had suffered more or less
from the prevalent fevers of the monsoon, during which the valley is
peculiarly unhealthy, especially to foreigners, when the wells and
reservoirs overflow from the springs which break in, impregnated with
putrid vegetation and mineral poisons, covering the surface with a
bluish oily fluid. The art of filtrating water to free it from
impurities is unknown to the Rajputs, and with some shame I record that
we did not make them wiser, though they are not strangers to the more
simple process, adopted throughout the desert, of using potash and alum;
the former to neutralize the salt and render the water more fit for
culinary purposes; the latter to throw down the impurities held
suspended. They also use an alkaline nut in washing, which by simply
steeping emits a froth which is a good substitute for soap.[4.25.2]

On the 12th October, at five A.M., our trumpet sounded to horse, and we
were not slow in obeying the summons; the “yellow boys” with their old
native commandant looking even more cheerful than usual as we joined
them. Skinner’s Horse[4.25.3] wear a jamah or tunic of yellow
broadcloth, with scarlet turbans and cincture. Who [655] does not know
that James Skinner’s men are the most orderly in the Company’s service,
and that in every other qualification constituting the efficient
soldier, they are second to none? On another signal which reverberated
from the palace, where the drums announced that the descendant of Surya
was no sluggard, we moved on through the yet silent capital towards the
gate of the sun, where we found drawn up the quotas of Bhindar, Delwara,
Amet, and Bansi, sent as an honorary guard by the Rana, to escort us to
the frontiers. As they would have been an incumbrance to me and an
inconvenience to the country, from their laxity of discipline, after
chatting with their leader, during a sociable ride, I dismissed them at
the pass, with my respects to the Rana and their several chieftains. We
reached the camp before eight o’clock, the distance being only thirteen
miles. The spot chosen (and where I afterwards built a residence) was a
rising ground between the villages of Merta and Tus, sprinkled with
trees, and for a space of four miles clear of the belt of forest which
fringes the granite barriers of the valley. It commanded an entire view
of the plains in the direction of Chitor, still covered, excepting a
patch of cultivation here and there, with jungle. The tiger-mount, its
preserves of game, and the mouldering hunting-seats of the Rana and his
chieftains, were three miles to the north; to the south, a mile distant,
we had the Berach River, abounding in trout; and the noble lake whence
it issues, called after its founder the Udai Sagar, was not more than
three to the west. For several reasons it was deemed advisable to choose
a spot out of the valley; the health of the party, though not an
unimportant, was not a principal motive for choosing such a distance
from the court. The wretchedness in which we found it rendered a certain
degree of interference requisite, and it was necessary that they should
shake this off, in order to preserve their independence. It was dreaded
lest the aid requested by the Rana, from the peculiar circumstances on
our first going amongst them, might be construed as a precedent for the
intrusion of advice on after occasions. The distance between the court
and the agent of the British Government was calculated to diminish this
impression, and obliged them also to trust to their own resources, after
the machine was once set in motion. On the heights of Tus our tents were
pitched, the escort paraded, and St. George’s flag displayed. Here
camels, almost wild, were fitted for the first time with the
pack-saddle, lamenting in discordant gutturals the [656] hardship of
their fate, though luckily ignorant of the difference between grazing
whither they listed in the happy valley, and carrying a load in “the
region of death,” where they would only find the thorny mimosa or
prickly _phog_[4.25.4] to satisfy their hunger.

=Pallāna.=—_October 13._—There being no greater trial of patience than
the preparations for a march after a long halt, we left the camp at
daybreak amidst the most discordant yells from the throats of a hundred
camels, which drowned every attempt to be heard, while the elephants
squeaked their delight in that peculiar treble which they emit when
happy. There was one little fellow enjoying himself free from all
restraints of curbs or pack-saddles, and inserting his proboscis into
the sepoy’s baggage, whence he would extract a bag of flour, and move
off, pursued by the owner; which was sure to produce shouts of mirth to
add to the discord. This little representative of Ganesa was only eight
years old, and not more than twelve hands high. He was a most agreeable
pet, though the proofs he gave of his wisdom in trusting himself amidst
the men when cooking their dinners, were sometimes disagreeable to them,
but infinitely amusing to those who watched his actions. The rains
having broken up unusually late, we found the boggy ground, on which we
had to march, totally unable to bear the pressure of loaded cattle; even
the ridges, which just showed their crests of quartz above the surface,
were not safe. Our route was over a fine plain well wooded and watered,
soil excellent, and studded with numerous large villages; yet all
presenting uniformly the effects of warfare and rapine. The landscape,
rendered the more interesting by our long incarceration in the valley,
was abstractedly pleasing. On our left lay the mountains enclosing the
capital, on one of whose elevated peaks are the ruins of Ratakot,
overlooking all around; while to the east the eye might in vain seek for
a boundary. We passed Deopur, once a township of some consequence, and
forming part of the domain of the Bhanej,[4.25.5] Zalim Singh, the heir
of Marwar, whose history, if it could be given here, would redeem the
nobles of Rajputana from the charge of being of uncultivated intellect.
In listening to [657] his biography, both time and place were unheeded;
the narrator, my own venerable Guru,[4.25.6] had imbibed much of his
varied knowledge from this accomplished chieftain, to whom arms and
letters were alike familiar. He was the son of Raja Bijai Singh and a
princess of Mewar: but domestic quarrels made it necessary to abandon
the paternal for the maternal mansion, and a domain was assigned by the
Rana, which put him on a footing with his own children. Without
neglecting any of the martial amusements and exercises of the Rajput, he
gave up all those hours, generally devoted to idleness, to the
cultivation of letters. He was versed in philosophical theology,
astronomy, and the history of his country; and in every branch of poesy,
from the sacred canticles of Jayadeva to the couplets of the modern
bard, he was an adept. He composed and improvised with facility, and his
residence was the rendezvous for every bard of fame. That my respected
tutor did not overrate his acquirements, I had the best proof in his
own, for all which (and he rated them at an immeasurable distance
compared with the subject of his eulogy) he held himself indebted to the
heir of Marwar, who was at length slain in asserting his right to the
throne in the desert.

=Rām Singh and the Rāja of Narsinghgarh. The Oswāl Mahājans.=—After a
four hours’ march, picking our way amidst swamps and treacherous bogs,
we reached the advanced tents at Pallana. Like Deopur, it presented the
spectacle of a ruin, a corner of which held all its inhabitants; the
remains of temples and private edifices showed what it had once been.
Both towns formerly belonged to the fisc of the Rana, who, with his
usual improvidence, on the death of his nephew included them in the
grant to the temple of Kanhaiya. I found at my tents the minister’s
right hand, Ram Singh Mehta; Manikchand, the Diwan or factotum of the
chieftain of Bhindar; and the ex-Raja of Narsinghgarh, now an exile at
Udaipur.[4.25.7] The first was a fine specimen of the non-militant class
of these countries, and although he had seldom passed the boundaries of
Mewar, no country could produce a better specimen of a courteous
gentleman: his figure tall, deportment easy, features regular and
handsome, complexion fair, with a fine slightly-curled beard and
mustachios jet black. Ram Singh, without being conceited, is aware that
nature has been indulgent to him, and without any foppery he pays great
attention to externals. He is always elegantly attired, and varies with
good taste the colours of his turban and ceinture, though his loose
tunics are always white; the aroma of the _itr_ is the only mark of the
dandy about him: and this forms no criterion [658], as our red coats
attest, which receive a sprinkling at every visit. With his dagger and
pendent tassel, and the _balaband_ or purple cordon (the Rana’s gift)
round his turban, behold the servant “whom the king delighteth to
honour.” As he has to support himself by paying court to the Rana’s
sister, the queens, and other fair influentials behind the curtain, his
personal _attraits_ are no slight auxiliaries. He is of the Jain faith,
and of the tribe of Osi, which now reckons one hundred thousand
families, all of Rajput origin, and descendants of the Agnikula stock.
They proselytized in remote antiquity, and settling at the town of Osi
in Marwar, retain this designation, or the still more common one of
Oswal. It was from the Pramara and Solanki branches of the Agnikula race
that these assumed the doctrines of Buddha or Jaina: not however from
the ranks of the Brahmans, but, as I firmly believe, from that faith,
whatever it was, which these Scythic or Takshak tribes brought from
beyond the Indus. In like manner we found the Chauhan (also an Agnikula)
regenerated by the Brahmans on Mount Abu; while the fourth tribe, the
Parihara (ancient sovereigns of Kashmir), have left traces in the
monuments of their capital, Mandor, that they espoused the then
prevailing faith of Rajasthan, namely, that of Buddha.[4.25.8]

=Mānikchand.=—Manikchand, also of the Jain faith, but of a different
tribe (the Sambhari), was in all the reverse of Ram Singh. He was tall,
thin, rather bent, and of swarthy complexion, and his tongue and his
beads were in perpetual motion. He had mixed in all the intrigues of the
last quarter of a century, and, setting Zalim Singh of Kotah aside, had
more influenced events than any individual now alive. He was the organ
of the Saktawats, and the steward and counsellor of the head of this
clan, the Bhindar chief; and being accordingly the irreconcilable foe of
the Chondawats, had employed all the resources of his talents and his
credit to effect their humiliation. To this end, he has leagued with
Sindis, Pathans, and Mahrattas, and would not have scrupled to coalesce
with his Satanic Majesty, could he thereby have advanced their revenge:
in pursuance of which he has been detained in confinement as a hostage,
put to torture from inability to furnish the funds he would
unhesitatingly promise for aid, and all the while sure of death if he
fell into the hands of his political antagonists. His talent and general
information made him always a welcome guest: which was wormwood to the
Chondawats, who laid claim to a monopoly of patriotism, and stigmatized
the Saktawats as the destroyers [659] of Mewar, though in truth both
were equally blind to her interests in their contests for supremacy. He
was now beyond fifty, and appeared much older; but was cheerful,
good-humoured, and conversant in all the varied occurrences of the
times. He at length completely established himself in the Rana’s good
graces, who gave his elder son a confidential employment. Had he lived,
he would have been conspicuous, for he had all the talent of his father,
with the personal adjuncts possessed by Ram Singh; but being sensitive
and proud, he swallowed poison, in consequence it was said of the
severity of an undeserved rebuke from his father, and died generally
regretted. I may here relate the end of poor Manika. It was on the
ground we had just quitted that he visited me for the last time, on my
return from the journey just commenced. He had obtained the contract for
the whole transit duties of the State, at the rate of 250,000 rupees per
annum. Whether from the corruption of his numerous deputy collectors,
his own cupidity, or negligence, he professed his inability to fulfil
the contract by nearly a sixth of the amount, though from his talents
and promises, a perfect establishment of this important department,
which had been taken from others on his account, was expected. It was
difficult to judge charitably of his assertions, without giving occasion
to his enemies to put a wrong construction on the motives. He pitched
his tent near me, and requested an interview. He looked very
disconsolate, and remarked, that he had seven several times left his
tent, and as often turned back, the bird of omen having each time passed
him on the adverse side; but that at length he had determined to
disregard it, as having forfeited confidence, he was indifferent to the
future. He admitted the profligacy of his inferiors, whom he had not
sufficiently superintended, and took his leave, promising by assiduity
to redeem his engagements, though his past character for intrigue made
his asseverations doubtful. Again failing to make good his promises, or,
as was surmised, having applied the funds to his own estate, he took
_saran_ with the Raja of Shahpura; where, mortified in all probability
by the reflection of the exultation of his rivals over his disgrace, and
having lost the confidence of his own chief when he obtained that of the
Rana, he had recourse to the usual expedient of these countries when
“perplexed in the extreme,”—took poison and died.

=The Rāja of Narsinghgarh.=—The last of the trio of visitors on this
occasion, the Raja of Narsinghgarh, is now, as before stated, in exile.
He is of the tribe of Umat, one of thirty-six divisions [660] of the
Pramaras,[4.25.9] settled during fifteen generations in Central India,
and giving the name of Umatwara to the petty sovereignty of which
Narsinghgarh is the capital. Placed in the very heart of the predatory
hordes, the Pindaris and Mahrattas occupied almost every village that
owned their sway, and compelled him to the degradation of living under
Holkar’s orange standard, which waved over the battlements of his abode.
To one or other of the great Mahratta leaders, Sindhia and Holkar, all
the petty princes were made tributary dependents, and Umatwara had early
acknowledged Holkar, paying the annual sum of eighty thousand rupees:
but this vassalage did not secure the Raja from the ravages of the other
spoliators, nor from the rapacity of the myrmidons of his immediate lord
paramount. In 1817, when these countries, for the first time in many
centuries, tasted the blessings of peace, Umatwara was, like Mewar, a
mass of ruins, its fertile lands being overgrown with the thorny
_mimosa_ or the useful _kesula_. The Raja partook of the demoralization
around him; he sought refuge in opium and arak from his miseries, and
was totally unfitted to aid in the work of redemption when happier days
shone upon them. His son Chain Singh contrived to escape these snares,
and was found in every respect competent to cooperate in the work of
renovation, and through the intervention of the British agent (Major
Henley), an arrangement was effected by which the Raja retired on a
stipend and the son carried on the duties of government in his

It was unfortunate for these ancient races, that on the fortunate
occasion presented in 1817-18, when both Sindhia and Holkar aimed at the
overthrow of our power (the one treacherously cloaking his views, the
other disclosing them in the field), our policy did not readily grasp
it, to rescue all these States from ruin and dependence. Unfortunately,
their peculiar history was little known, or it would have been easily
perceived that they presented the exact materials we required between us
and the entire occupation of the country. But there was then a strong
notion afloat of a species of balance of power, and it was imagined that
these demoralized and often humiliated Mahrattas were the fittest
materials to throw into the scale—against I know not what, except
ourselves: for assuredly the day of our reverses will be a jubilee to
them, and will level every spear that they can bring against our
existence. They would merit contempt if they acted [661] otherwise. Can
they cease to remember that the orange flag which waved in triumph from
the Sutlej to the Kistna has been replaced by the cross of St. George?
But the snake which flutters in tortuous folds thereon, fitting crest
for the wily Mahratta, is only scathed, and may yet call forth the lance
of the red cross knight to give the coup de grace.[4.25.11] Let it then
be remembered that, both as regards good policy and justice, we owe to
these States—independence.

To what does our interference with Umatwara tend, but to realize the
tribute of Holkar; to fix a millstone round their necks, which,
notwithstanding the comparative happiness they enjoy, will keep them
always repining, and to secure which will make our interference eternal.
Had a due advantage been taken of the hostilities in 1817, it might have
obviated these evils by sending the predatory sovereign of half a
century’s duration to a more restricted sphere. It may be said that it
is easy to devise plans years after the events which immediately called
for them: these not only were mine at the time, but were suggested to
the proper authorities; and I am still disposed to think my views

After chatting some time with the two chiefs described, and presenting
them with _itr_ and _pan_,[4.25.12] they took leave.

=Nāthdwāra.=—_October 14._—Marched at daybreak, and found the route
almost impracticable for camels, from the swampy nature of the soil. The
country is much broken with irregular low ridges of micaceous schist, in
the shape of a chine or hog’s back, the crest of which has throughout
all its length a vein of quartz piercing the slate, and resembling a
back-bone; the direction of these veins is uniformly N.N.E., and the
inclination about 75° to the east. Crossed the Nathdwara ridge, about
four hundred feet in height, and, like the hills encircling the valley,
composed of a brown granite intersected with protruding veins of quartz,
incumbent on blue compact slate. The ascent was a mile and a half east
of the town, and on the summit, which is table-land, there are two small
lakes, whence water-courses conduct streams on each side of the road to
supply the temple and the town. There are noble trees planted on either
side of these rivulets, forming a delightful shade. As we passed through
the town to our encampment on the [662] opposite side of the Banas
River, the inhabitants crowded the streets, shouting their grateful
acknowledgments to the power which had redeemed the sacred precincts of
Kanhaiya from the scenes of turpitude amidst which they had grown up.
They were all looking forward with much pleasure to the approaching
festival of Annakuta.

_October 15._—Halted to allow the baggage to join, which, partly from
the swamps and partly from the intractable temper of the cattle, we have
not seen since we parted company at Merta. Received a visit from the
Mukhya of the temple, accompanied by a pilgrim in the person of a rich
banker of Surat. A splendid quilted cloak of gold brocade, a blue scarf
with a deep border of gold, and an embroidered band for the head, were
brought to me as the gift of the god through his high-priest, in
testimony of my zeal. I was also honoured with a tray of the sacred
food, which consisted of all the dried fruits, spices, and aromatics of
the East. In the evening I had a portion of the afternoon repast,
consisting of a preparation of milk; but the days of simplicity are
gone, and the Apollo of Vraj has his curds adulterated with rose-water
and amber. Perhaps, with the exception of Lodi, where is fabricated the
far-famed Parmesan, whose pastures maintain forty thousand kine, there
is no other place known which possesses more than the city of the Hindu
Apollo, though but a tenth of that of Lodi. But from the four thousand
cows, the expenditure of milk and butter for the votaries of Kanhaiya
may be judged. I was entertained with the opinions of the old banker on
the miraculous and oracular power of the god of Nathdwara. He had just
been permitted to prostrate himself before the car which conveyed the
deity from the Yamuna, and held forth on the impiety of the age, in
withholding the transmission of the miraculous wheels from heaven, which
in former days came once in six months. The most devout alone are
permitted to worship the chariot of Kanhaiya. The garments which
decorate his representative are changed several times a day, to imitate
the different stages of his existence, from the youthful Bala to the
conqueror of Kansa; or, as the Surat devotee said in broken English,
“Oh, sir, he be much great god; he first of all; and he change from de
balak, or child, to de fierce chief, with de bow and arrow a hees
hands”; while the old Mukhya, whose office it is to perambulate the
whole continent of India as one of the couriers of Kanhaiya, lifted up
his eyes as he ejaculated, “Sri Krishna! Sri Krishna!” I gave him a
paper [663] addressed to all officers of the British Government who
might pass through the lands of the church, recommending the protection
of the peacocks and pipal trees, and to forbear polluting the precincts
of the god with the blood of animals. To avoid offending against their
prejudices in this particular, I crossed the river, and killed our fowls
within our own sanctuary, and afterwards concealed the murder by burying
the feathers.

=Sagacity of Elephants. Usarwās.=—_October 16._—There is nothing so
painful as sitting down inactive when the mind is bent upon an object.
Our escort was yet labouring in the swamps, and as we could not be worse
off than we were, we deemed it better to advance, and accordingly
decamped in the afternoon, sending on a tent to Usarwas; but though the
distance was only eight miles we were benighted, and had the comfort to
find old Fateh, “the victorious,” floundering with his load in a bog,
out of which he was picking his way in a desperate rage. It is generally
the driver’s fault when such an accident occurs: for if there be but a
foot’s breadth of sound footing, so sensible is the animal, that he is
sure to avoid danger if left to his own discretion and the free use of
his proboscis, with which he thumps the ground as he cautiously proceeds
step by step, giving signals to his keeper of the safety or the reverse
of advancing, as clearly as if he spoke. Fateh’s signals had been
disregarded, and he was accordingly in a great passion at finding
himself abused, and kept from his cakes and butter, of which he had
always thirty pounds’ weight at sunset. The sagacity of the elephant is
well known, and was in no instance better displayed than in the
predicament above described. I have seen the huge monster in a position
which to him must have been appalling; but, with an instinctive reliance
on others, he awaited in tolerable patience the arrival of materials for
his extrication, in the shape of fascines and logs of wood, which being
thrown to him, he placed deliberately in front, and making a stout
resistance with head, teeth, and foot, pressing the wood, he brought up
one leg after the other in a most methodical and pioneer-like manner,
till he delivered himself from his miry prison. Fateh did not require
such aid; but, aware that the fault was not his, he soon indignantly
shook the load off his back, and left them to get it out in any manner
they chose.

=Wolves.=—Waited to aid in reloading, and it being already dusk, pushed
on with my dog Belle, who, observing a couple of animals, darted off
into the jungles, and led me after her as fast as the devious paths in
such a savage scene would permit. But I [664] soon saw her scampering
down the height, the game, in the shape of two huge wolves, close at her
heels, and delighted to find rescue at hand. I have no doubt their
retreat from my favourite greyhound was a mere _ruse de guerre_ to lead
her beyond supporting distance, and they had nearly effected their
object: they went off in a very sulky and leisurely manner. In my
subaltern days, when with the subsidiary force in Gohad, I remember
scouring the tremendous ravines near the Antri Pass to get a spear at a
wolf, my companion (Lieut. now Lieut.-Col. T. D. Smith) and myself were
soon surrounded by many scores of these hungry animals, who prowled
about our camp all night, having carried off a child the night before.
As we charged in one direction, they gave way; but kept upon our
quarters without the least fear, and seemingly enjoyed the fun. I do not
recollect whether it excited any other feeling than mirth. They showed
no symptom of ferocity, or desire to make a meal of us; or a retreat
from these ravines, with their superior topographical knowledge, would
doubtless have been difficult.

=The Banās River. The Fairy Gift Legend.=—We passed the Banas River,
just escaping from the rock-bound barriers, our path almost in contact
with the water to the left. The stream was clear as crystal, and of
great depth; the banks low and verdant, and fringed with wood. It was a
lovely, lonely spot, and well deserved to be consecrated by legendary
tale. In ancient times, ere these valleys were trod by the infidel
Tatar, coco-nuts were here presented to the genius of the river, whose
arm appeared above the waters to receive them; but ever since some
unhallowed hand threw a stone in lieu of a coco-nut, the arm has been
withdrawn.[4.25.13] Few in fact lived, either to supply or keep alive
the traditions which lend a charm to a journey through these wild
scenes, though full of bogs and wolves. We reached our journey’s end
very late, and though no tents were up, we had the consolation to spy
the cook in a snug corner with a leg of mutton before some blazing logs,
round which he had placed the wall of a tent to check the force of the
mountain air. We all congregated round the cook’s fire, and were
infinitely happier in the prospect before us, and with the heavens for
our canopy, than with all our accustomed conveniences and fare. Every
one this day had taken his own road, and each had his adventure to
relate. Our repast was delicious; nor did any favourable account reach
us of tents or other luxuries to mar our enjoyments, till midnight, when
the fly of the doctor’s tent arrived, of which we availed ourselves as a
protection against the heavy dews of [665] the night; and though our
bivouac was in a ploughed field, and we were surrounded by wild beasts
in a silent waste, they proved no drawbacks to the enjoyment of repose.

Halted the 17th, to collect the dislocated baggage; for although such
scenes, seasoned with romance, might do very well for _us_, our
followers were ignorant of the name of Ann Radcliffe or other
conjurers; and though admirers of tradition, like myself, preferred it
after dinner. Usarwas is a valuable village, but now thinly inhabited.
It was recently given by the Rana, with his accustomed want of
reflection, to a Charan bard, literally for an old song. But even this
folly was surpassed on his bestowing the township of Sesoda,[4.25.14]
in the valley in advance, the place from which his tribe takes its
appellation, on another of the fraternity, named Kishna, his master
bard, who has the art to make his royal patron believe that
opportunity alone is wanting to render his name as famed as that of
the illustrious Sanga, or the immortal Partap. I received and returned
the visit of an ascetic Sannyasi, whose hermitage was perched upon a
cliff not far from our tents. Like most of his brethren, he was
intelligent, and had a considerable store of local and foreign legends
at command. He was dressed in a loose orange-coloured anga or tunic,
with a turban of the same material, in which was twisted a necklace of
the lotus-kernel;[4.25.15] he had another in his hand, with which he
repeated the name of the deity at intervals. He expressed his own
surprise and the sentiments of the inhabitants at the tranquillity
they enjoyed, without any tumultuary cause being discoverable; and
said that we must be something more than human. This superstitious
feeling for a while was felt as well by the prince and the turbulent
chief, as by the anchorite of Usarwas.

=Samecha.=—_October 18._—Marched at daybreak to Samecha, distance twelve
miles. Again found our advanced elephant and breakfast-tent in a swamp:
halted to extricate him from his difficulties. The road from Nathdwara
is but a footpath, over or skirting a succession of low broken ridges,
covered with prickly shrubs, as the Khair, the Karil, and
Babul.[4.25.16] At the village of Gaon Gura, midway in the morning’s
journey, we entered the alpine valley called the Shera Nala. The village
of Gura is placed in the opening or break in the range through which the
river flows, whose serpentine meanderings indicate the only road up this
majestic valley. On the banks, or in its bed, which we frequently
crossed, lay [666] the remainder of this day’s march. The valley varies
in breadth, but is seldom less than half a mile, the hills rising boldly
from their base; some with a fine and even surface covered with mango
trees, others lifting their splintered pinnacles into the clouds. Nature
has been lavish of her beauties to this romantic region. The _gular_ or
wild fig, the _sitaphal_ or custard-apple, the peach or _aru badam_
(almond-peach),[4.25.17] are indigenous and abundant; the banks of the
stream are shaded by the withy, while the large trees, the useful mango
and picturesque tamarind, the sacred pipal and bar, are abundantly
scattered with many others, throughout. Nor has nature in vain appealed
to human industry and ingenuity to second her intents.

=Terrace Cultivation.=—From the margin of the stream on each side to the
mountain’s base they have constructed a series of terraces rising over
each other, whence by simple and ingenious methods they raise the waters
to irrigate the rich crops of sugar-cane, cotton, and rice, which they
cultivate upon them. Here we have a proof that ingenuity is the same,
when prompted by necessity, in the Jura or the Aravalli. Wherever soil
could be found, or time decomposed these primitive rocks, a barrier was
raised. When discovered, should it be in a hollow below, or on the
summit of a crag, it is alike greedily seized on: even there water is
found, and if you leave the path below and ascend a hundred feet above
the terraces, you will discover pools or reservoirs dammed in with
massive trees, which serve to irrigate such insulated spots, or serve as
nurseries to the young rice-plants. Not unfrequently, their labour is
entirely destroyed, and the dykes swept away by the periodical
inundations; for we observed the high-water mark in the trees
considerably up the acclivity. The rice crop was abundant, and the
_juar_ [millet] or maize was thriving, but scanty; the standard autumnal
crop which preceded it, the _makai_, or ‘Indian corn,’ had been entirely
devoured by the locust. The sugar-cane, by far the most valuable product
of this curious region, was very fine but sparingly cultivated, from the
dread of this insect, which for the last three years had ravaged the
valley. There are two species of locusts, which come in clouds,
darkening the air, from the desert: the _pharka_ and the _tiri_ are
their names;[4.25.18] the first is the great enemy of our incipient
prosperity. I observed a colony some time ago proceeding eastward with a
rustling, rushing sound, like a distant torrent, or the wind in a forest
at the fall of the leaf. We have thus to struggle against natural and
artificial obstacles to the rising energies of the country; and dread of
the _pharkas_ deters speculators [667] from renting this fertile tract,
which almost entirely belongs to the fisc. Its natural fertility cannot
be better demonstrated than in recording the success of an experiment,
which produced five crops, from the same piece of ground, within
thirteen months. It must, however, be understood that two of these are
species of millet, which are cut in six weeks from the time of sowing. A
patch of ground, for which the cultivator pays six rupees rent, will
produce sugar-cane six hundred rupees in value: but the labour and
expense of cultivation are heavy, and cupidity too often deprives the
husbandman of the greater share of the fruits, ninety rupees having been
taken in arbitrary taxes, besides his original rent.

The air of this elevated region gave vigour to the limbs, and appetite
to the disordered stomach. There was an exhilarating _fraîcheur_, which
made us quite frantic; the transition being from 96° of Fahrenheit to
English summer heat. We breakfasted in a verdant spot under the shade of
a noble fig-tree fanned by the cool breezes from the mountains.

=Samecha Town. Rājpūt Bhūmias.=—Samecha consists of three separate
hamlets, each of about one hundred houses. It is situated at the base of
a mountain distinctively termed Rana Pag, from a well-known path, by
which the Ranas secured their retreat to the upland wilds when hard
pushed by the Moguls. It also leads direct to the capital of the
district, avoiding the circuitous route we were pursuing. Samecha is
occupied by the Kumbhawats, descendants of Rana Kumbha, who came in a
body with their elders at their head to visit me, bringing the famed
_kakri_[4.25.19] of the valley (often three feet in length), curds, and
a kid as gifts. I rose to receive these Rajaputras, the Bhumias or
yeomen of the valley; and though undistinguishable in dress from the
commonest cultivator, I did homage to their descent. Indeed, they did
not require the auxiliaries of dress, their appearance being so striking
as to draw forth the spontaneous exclamation from my friends, “what
noble-looking fellows!” Their tall and robust figures, sharp aquiline
features, and flowing beards, with a native dignity of demeanour (though
excepting their chiefs, who wore turbans and scarfs, they were in their
usual labouring dresses, immense loose breeches and turbans), compelled
respect and admiration. Formerly they gave one hundred matchlocks for
garrison duty at Kumbhalmer; but the Mahrattas have pillaged and
impoverished them. These are the real allodial tenants of the land,
performing personal local service, and paying an annual quit-rent. I
conciliated their good opinion by [668] talking of the deeds of old
days, the recollection of which a Rajput never outlives. The assembly
under the fig-tree was truly picturesque, and would have furnished a
good subject for Gerard Dow. Our baggage joined us at Samecha; but many
of our camels were already worn out by labouring through swamps, for
which they are by nature incapacitated.

_October 19._—Marched to Kelwara, the capital of this mountainous
region, and the abode of the Ranas when driven from Chitor and the
plains of the Banas; on which occasion these valleys received and
maintained a great portion of the population of Mewar. There is not a
rock or a stream that has not some legend attached to it, connected with
these times. The valley presents the same features as already described.
Passed a cleft in the mountain on the left, through which a stream
rushes, called the “elephant’s pool”; a short cut may be made by the
foot passenger to Kelwara, but it is too intricate for any unaccustomed
to these wilds to venture. We could not ascertain the origin of the
“elephant’s pool,” but it is most likely connected with ancient warfare.
Passed the village of Murcha, held by a Rathor chieftain. On the margin
of a small lake adjoining the village, a small and very neat sacrificial
altar attracted my regard; and not satisfied with the reply that it was
_sati ka makan_, ‘the place of faith,’ I sent to request the attendance
of the village seer. It proved to be that of the ancestor of the
occupant: a proof of devotion to her husband, who had fallen in the wars
waged by Aurangzeb against this country; when, with a relic of her lord,
she mounted the pyre. He is sculptured on horseback, with lance at rest,
to denote that it is no churl to whom the record is devoted.


  _To face page 776._

Near the “elephant’s pool,” and at the village of Kherli, two roads
diverge: one, by the Bargula _nal_ or pass, conducts direct to
Nathdwara; the other, leading to Rincher, and the celebrated shrine of
the four-armed god,[4.25.20] famed as a place of pilgrimage. The range
on our left terminating abruptly, we turned by Uladar to Kelwara, and
encamped in a mango-grove, on a tableland half a mile north of the town.
Here the valley enlarges, presenting a wild, picturesque, and rugged
appearance. The barometer indicated about a thousand feet of elevation
above the level of Udaipur, which is about two thousand above the sea:
yet we were scarcely above the base of the alpine cliffs which towered
around us on all sides. It was the point of divergence for the waters,
which, from the numerous fountains in [669] these uplands, descended
each declivity, to refresh the arid plains of Marwar to the west, and to
swell the lakes of Mewar to the east. Previous to the damming of the
stream which forms that little ocean, the Kankroli lake, it is asserted
that the supply to the west was very scanty, nearly all flowing
eastward, or through the valley; but since the formation of the lake,
and consequent saturation of the intermediate region, the streams are
ever flowing to the west. The spot where I encamped was at least five
hundred feet lower than Aret pol, the first of the fortified barriers
leading to Kumbhalmer, whose citadel rose more than seven hundred feet
above the _terre-pleine_ of its outworks beneath.

=Kūmbhalmer Fort. Mahārāja Daulat Singh.=—The Maharaja Daulat Singh, a
near relative of the Rana, and governor of Kumbhalmer, attended by a
numerous suite, the crimson standard, trumpets, kettledrums, seneschal,
and bard, advanced several miles to meet and conduct me to the castle.
According to etiquette, we both dismounted and embraced, and afterwards
rode together conversing on the affairs of the province, and the
generally altered condition of the country. Daulat Singh, being of the
immediate kin of his sovereign, is one of the Babas or infants of Mewar,
enumerated in the tribe called Ranawat, with the title of Maharaja.
Setting aside the family of Sheodan Singh, he is the next in succession
to the reigning family. He is one of the few over whom the general
demoralization has had no power, and remains a simple-minded
straightforward honest man; blunt, unassuming, and courteous. His rank
and character particularly qualify him for the post he holds on this
western frontier, which is the key to Marwar. It was in February 1818
that I obtained possession of this place (Kumbhalmer), by negotiating
the arrears of the garrison. Gold is the cheapest, surest, and most
expeditious of all generals in the East, amongst such mercenaries as we
had to deal with, who change masters with the same facility as they
would their turban. In twenty-four hours we were put in possession of
the fort, and as we had not above one-third of the stipulated sum in
ready cash, they without hesitation took a bill of exchange, written on
the drum-head, on the mercantile town of Pali in Marwar: in such
estimation is British faith held, even by the most lawless tribes of
India! Next morning we saw them winding down the western declivity,
while we quietly took our breakfast in an old ruined temple. During this
agreeable employment, we were joined by Major Macleod, of the artillery,
sent by General Donkin to report on the facilities of reducing the place
by siege, and [670] his opinion being, that a gun could not be placed in
position in less than six weeks, the grilling spared the European force
in such a region was well worth the £4000 of arrears. My own escort and
party remained in possession for a week, until the Rana sent his
garrison. During these eight days our time was amply occupied in
sketching and deciphering the monumental records of this singularly
diversified spot. It would be vain to attempt describing the intricacies
of approach to this far-famed abode, whose exterior is delineated by the
pencil. A massive wall, with numerous towers and pierced battlements,
having a strong resemblance to the Etruscan, encloses a space of some
miles extent below, while the pinnacle or _sikhara_ rises, like the
crown of the Hindu Cybele, tier above tier of battlements, to the
summit, which is crowned with the Badal Mahall, or ‘cloud-palace’ of the
Ranas. Thence the eye ranges over the sandy deserts and the chaotic mass
of mountains, which are on all sides covered with the cactus, which
luxuriates amidst the rocks of the Aravalli. Besides the Aret[4.25.21]
pol, or barrier thrown across the first narrow ascent, about one mile
from Kelwara, there is a second called the Halla[4.25.22] pol,
intermediate to the Hanuman[4.25.23] pol, the exterior gate of the
fortress, between which and the summit there are three more, viz. the
gate of victory, the sanguinary gate, and that of Rama, besides the
last, or Chaugan[4.25.24] pol. The barometer stood, at half-past seven
A.M., 26° 65´; thermometer 58° Fahr. at the Aret pol: and on the summit
at nine, while the thermometer rose to 75°, the barometer had only
descended 15´, and stood at 26° 50´,[4.25.25] though we had ascended
full six hundred feet.

=A Jain Temple.=—Admitting the last range as our guide, the peak of
Kumbhalmer will be 3353[4.25.26] feet above the level of the ocean.
Hence I laid down the positions of many towns far in the desert. Here
were subjects to occupy the pencil at least for a month; but we had only
time for one of the most interesting views, the Jain temple before the
reader, and a sketch of the fortress itself, both finished on the spot.
The design of this temple is truly classic. It consists only of the
sanctuary, which has a vaulted dome and colonnaded portico all round.
The architecture is undoubtedly Jain, which is as distinct in character
from the Brahmanical as their religion. There is a chasteness and
simplicity in this specimen of monotheistic worship, affording a wide
contrast to the elaborately sculptured shrines of the Saivas, and [671]
other polytheists of India. The extreme want of decoration best attests
its antiquity, entitling us to attribute it to that period when Samprati
Raja, of the family of Chandragupta, was paramount sovereign over all
these regions (two hundred years before Christ);[4.25.27] to whom
tradition ascribes the most ancient monuments of this faith, yet
existing in Rajasthan and Saurashtra. The proportions and forms of the
columns are especially distinct from the other temples, being slight and
tapering instead of massive, the general characteristic of Hindu
architecture; while the projecting cornices, which would absolutely
deform shafts less slight, are peculiarly indicative of the Takshak
architect.[4.25.28] Samprati was the fourth prince in descent from
Chandragupta, of the Jain faith, and the ally of Seleucus, the Grecian
sovereign of Bactriana. The fragments of Megasthenes, ambassador from
Seleucus, record that this alliance was most intimate; that the daughter
of the Rajput king was married to Seleucus, who, in return for elephants
and other gifts, sent a body of Greek soldiers to serve Chandragupta. It
is curious to contemplate the possibility, nay the probability, that the
Jain temple now before the reader may have been designed by Grecian
artists, or that the taste of the artists among the Rajputs may have
been modelled after the Grecian. This was our temple of Theseus in
Mewar. A massive monolithic emblem of black marble of the Hindu
Pitrideva had been improperly introduced into the shrine of the
worshippers of the “spirit alone.” Being erected on the rock, and
chiselled from the syenite on which it stands, it may bid defiance to
time. There was another sacred structure in its vicinity, likewise Jain,
but of a distinct character; indeed, offering a perfect contrast to that
described. It was three stories in height; each tier was decorated with
numerous massive low columns, resting on a sculptured panelled parapet,
and sustaining the roof of each story, which, being very low, admitted
but a broken light to break the pervading gloom. I should imagine that
the sacred architects of the East had studied effect equally with the
preservers of learning and the arts in the dark period of Europe, when
those monuments, which must ever be her pride, arose on the ruins of
paganism. How far the Saxon or Scandinavian pagan contributed to the
general design of such structures may be doubted; but that their
decorations, especially the grotesque, have a powerful resemblance to
the most ancient Hindu-Scythic, there is no question, as I shall
hereafter more particularly point out [672].


  In the Fortress of Kūmbhalmer.
  _To face page 780._

Who, that has a spark of imagination, but has felt the indescribable
emotion which the gloom and silence of a Gothic cathedral excites? The
very extent provokes a comparison humiliating to the pigmy spectator,
and this is immeasurably increased when the site is the mountain
pinnacle, where man and his works fade into nothing in contemplating the
magnificent expanse of nature. The Hindu priest did not raise the temple
for heterogeneous multitudes: he calculated that the mind would be more
highly excited when left to its solitary devotions, amidst the silence
of these cloistered columns, undisturbed save by the monotony of the
passing bell, while the surrounding gloom is broken only by the flare of
the censer as the incense mounts above the altar.

=Temple of Māma Devi.=—It would present no distinct picture to the eye
were I to describe each individual edifice within the scope of vision,
either upwards towards the citadel, or below. Looking down from the Jain
temple towards the pass, till the contracting gorge is lost in distance,
the gradually diminishing space is filled with masses of ruin. I will
only notice two of the most interesting. The first is dedicated to Mama
Devi, ‘the mother of the gods,’ whose shrine is on the brow of the
mountain overlooking the pass. The goddess is placed in the midst of her
numerous family, including the greater and lesser divinities. They are
all of the purest marble, each about three feet in height, and tolerably
executed, though evidently since the decline of the art, of which very
few good specimens exist executed within the last seven centuries. The
temple is very simple and primitive, consisting but of a long hall,
around which the gods are ranged, without either niche or altar.

The most interesting portion of this temple is its court, formed by a
substantial wall enclosing a tolerable area. The interior of this wall
had been entirely covered with immense tables of black marble, on which
was inscribed the history of their gods, and, what was of infinitely
greater importance, that of the mortal princes who had erected the
tablets in their honour. But what a sight for the antiquary! Not one of
the many tables was entire; the fragments were strewed about, or placed
in position to receive the flesh-pots of the sons of Ishmael, the
mercenary Rohilla Afghan [673].[4.25.29]

=Memorial of Prithirāj and Tāra Bāi.=—On quitting the temple of Mama
Devi, my attention was attracted by a simple monumental shrine on the
opposite side of the valley, and almost in the gorge of the pass. It was
most happily situated, being quite isolated, overlooking the road
leading to Marwar, and consisted of a simple dome of very moderate
dimensions, supported by columns, without any intervening object to
obstruct the view of the little monumental altar arising out of the
centre of the platform. It was the Sybilline temple of Tivoli in
miniature. To it, over rock and ruin, I descended. Here repose the ashes
of the Troubadour of Mewar, the gallant Prithiraj and his heroine wife,
Tara Bai, whose lives and exploits fill many a page of the legendary
romances of Mewar.


  _To face page 782._

This fair ‘star’ (_tara_) was the daughter of Rao Surthan, the chieftain
of Badnor. He was of the Solanki tribe, the lineal descendant of the
famed Balhara kings of Anhilwara. Thence expelled by the arms of Ala in
the thirteenth century, they migrated to Central India, and obtained
possession of Tonk-Toda and its lands on the Banas, which from remote
times had been occupied (perhaps founded) by the Taks, and hence bore
the name of Taksilanagar, familiarly Takatpur and Toda.[4.25.30] Surthan
had been deprived of Toda by Lila the Afghan, and now occupied Badnor at
the foot of the Aravalli, within the bounds of Mewar. Stimulated by the
reverses of her family, and by the incentives of its ancient glory, Tara
Bai, scorning the habiliments and occupations of her sex, learned to
guide the war-horse, and throw with unerring aim the arrow from his
back, even while at speed. Armed with the bow and quiver, and mounted on
a fiery Kathiawar, she joined the cavalcade in their unsuccessful
attempts to wrest Toda from the Afghan. Jaimall, the third son of Rana
Raemall, in person made proposals for her hand. “Redeem Toda,” said the
star of Badnor, “and my hand is thine.” He assented to the terms: but
evincing a rude determination to be possessed of the prize ere he had
earned it, he was slain by the indignant father. Prithiraj, the brother
of the deceased, was then in exile in Marwar; he had just signalized his
valour, and ensured his father’s forgiveness, the redemption of
Godwar,[4.25.31] and the [674] catastrophe at Badnor determined him to
accept the gage thrown down to Jaimall. Fame and the bard had carried
the renown of Prithiraj far beyond the bounds of Mewar; the name alone
was attractive to the fair, and when thereto he who bore it added all
the chivalrous ardour of his prototype, the Chauhan, Tara Bai, with the
sanction of her father, consented to be his, on the simple asseveration
that “he would restore to them Toda, or he was no true Rajput.” The
anniversary of the martyrdom of the sons of Ali was the season chosen
for the exploit.[4.25.32] Prithiraj formed a select band of five hundred
cavaliers, and accompanied by his bride, the fair Tara, who insisted on
partaking his glory and his danger, he reached Toda at the moment the
_ta’aziya_ or bier containing the martyr-brothers was placed in the
centre of the _chauk_ or ‘square.’ The prince, Tara Bai, and the
faithful Sengar chief, the inseparable companion of Prithiraj, left
their cavalcade and joined the procession as it passed under the balcony
of the palace in which the Afghan was putting on his dress preparatory
to descending. Just as he had asked who were the strange horsemen that
had joined the throng, the lance of Prithiraj and an arrow from the bow
of his Amazonian bride stretched him on the floor. Before the crowd
recovered from the panic, the three had reached the gate of the town,
where their exit was obstructed by an elephant. Tara Bai with her
scimitar divided his trunk, and the animal flying, they joined their
cavalcade, which was close at hand.

The Afghans were encountered, and could not stand the attack. Those who
did not fly were cut to pieces; and the gallant Prithiraj inducted the
father of his bride into his inheritance. A brother of the Afghans, in
his attempt to recover it, lost his life. The Nawab Mallu Khan then
holding Ajmer determined to oppose the Sesodia prince in person; who,
resolved upon being the assailant, advanced to Ajmer, encountered his
foe in the camp at daybreak, and after great slaughter entered Garh
Bitli, the citadel, with the fugitives. “By these acts,” says the
chronicle, “his fame increased in Rajwara: one thousand Rajputs,
animated by the same love of glory and devotion, gathered round the
_nakkaras_ of Prithiraj. Their swords shone in the heavens, and were
dreaded on the earth; but they aided the defenceless.”

Another story is recorded and confirmed by Muhammadan writers as to the
result, though they are ignorant of the impulse which prompted the act.
Prithiraj on some [675] occasion found the Rana conversing familiarly
with an ahadi[4.25.33] of the Malwa king, and feeling offended at the
condescension, expressed himself with warmth. The Rana ironically
replied: “You are a mighty seizer of kings; but for me, I desire to
retain my land.” Prithiraj abruptly retired, collected his band, made
for Nimach, where he soon gathered five thousand horse, and reaching
Dipalpur, plundered it, and slew the governor. The king on hearing of
the irruption left Mandu at the head of what troops he could collect;
but the Rajput prince, in lieu of retreating, rapidly advanced and
attacked the camp while refreshing after the march. Singling out the
royal tent, occupied by eunuchs and females, the king was made captive,
and placed on an express camel beside the prince, who warned the
pursuers to follow peaceably, or he would put his majesty to death;
adding that he intended him no harm, but that after having made him
“touch his father’s feet,” he should restore him to liberty. Having
carried him direct to Chitor and to his father’s presence, he turned to
him saying, “Send for your friend the ahadi, and ask him who this is?”
The Malwa king was detained a month within the walls of Chitor, and
having paid his ransom in horses, was set at liberty with every
demonstration of honour.[4.25.34] Prithiraj returned to Kumbhalmer, his
residence, and passed his life in exploits like these from the age of
fourteen to twenty-three, the admiration of the country and the theme of
the bard.

It could not be expected that long life would be the lot of one who thus
courted distinction, though it was closed neither by shot nor sabre, but
by poison, when on the eve of prosecuting his unnatural feud against his
brother Sanga, the place of whose retreat was made known by his marriage
with the daughter of the chieftain of Srinagar, who had dared to give
him protection in defiance of his threats.

At the same time he received a letter from his sister, written in great
grief, complaining of the barbarous treatment of her lord, the Sirohi
prince, from whose tyranny she begged to be delivered and to be restored
to the paternal roof; since whenever he had indulged too freely in the
‘essence of the flower,’ or in opium, he used to place her under the
bedstead, and leave her to sleep on the floor. Prithiraj instantly
departed, reached Sirohi at midnight, scaled the palace, and interrupted
the repose of Pabhu Rao by placing his poniard at his throat. His wife,
notwithstanding his cruelty, complied with his humiliating appeal for
mercy, and begged his life, which was granted on condition of his
standing as a suppliant with his wife’s [676] shoes on his head, and
touching her feet, the lowest mark of degradation. He obeyed, was
forgiven, and embraced by Prithiraj, who became his guest during five
days. Pabhu Rao was celebrated for a confection, of which he presented
some to his brother at parting. He partook of it as he came in sight of
Kumbhalmer; but on reaching the shrine of Mama Devi was unable to
proceed. Here he sent a message to the fair Tara to come and bid him
farewell; but so subtle was the poison, that death had overtaken him ere
she descended from the citadel. Her resolution was soon formed; the pyre
was erected, and with the mortal remains of the chivalrous Prithiraj in
her embrace, she sought “the regions of the sun.” Such the end of the
Sesodia prince, and the star of Badnor. From such instances we must form
our opinion of the manners of these people. But for the poisoned
confection of the chief of Sirohi, Prithiraj would have had the glory of
opposing himself to Babur, instead of his heroic brother and successor,
Sanga.[4.25.35] Whether, from his superior ardour of temperament, and
the love of military glory which attracted similarly constituted minds
to his fortunes, he would have been more successful than his brother, it
is futile to conjecture.

=The Frontier of Mārwār.=—_October 20._—Halted till noon, that the men
might dress their dinners, and prepare for the descent into “the region
of death,” or Marwar. The pass by which we had to gain it was
represented as terrific; but as both horse and elephant, with the aid of
the hatchet, will pick their way wherever man can go, we determined to
persevere. Struck the camp at noon, when the baggage filed off, halting
ourselves till three; the escort and advanced tents, and part of the
cuisine being ordered to clear the pass, while we designed to spend the
night midway, in a spot forming the natural boundary of Mewar and
Marwar, reported to be sufficiently capacious. Rumour had not magnified
the difficulties of the descent, which we found strewed with our
baggage, arresting all progress for a full hour. For nearly a mile there
was but just breadth sufficient to admit the passage of a loaded
elephant, the descent being at an angle of 55° with the horizon, and
streams on either side rushing with a deafening roar over their rugged
beds. As we gained a firmer footing at the base of this first descent,
we found that the gallant Manika, the gift of my friend the Bundi
prince, had missed his footing and rolled down the steep, breaking the
cantle of the saddle; a little farther appeared the cook, hanging in
dismay over the scattered implements of his art, his camel remonstrating
against the [677] replacing of his _kajavas_ or panniers. For another
mile it became more gentle, when we passed under a tower of Kumbhalmer,
erected on a scarped projection of the rock, full five hundred feet
above us. The scenery was magnificent; the mountains rising on each side
in every variety of form, and their summits, as they caught a ray of the
departing sun, reflecting on our sombre path a momentary gleam from the
masses of rose-coloured quartz which crested them. Noble forest trees
covered every face of the hills and the bottom of the glen, through
which, along the margin of the serpentine torrent which we repeatedly
crossed, lay our path. Notwithstanding all our mishaps, partly from the
novelty and grandeur of the scene, and partly from the invigorating
coolness of the air, our mirth became wild and clamorous: a week before
I was oppressed with a thousand ills; and now I trudged the rugged path,
leaping the masses of granite which had rolled into the torrent.

There was one spot where the waters formed a pool or _dah_. Little Carey
determined to trust to his pony to carry him across, but deviating to
the left, just as I was leaping from a projecting ledge, to my horror,
horse and rider disappeared. The shock was momentary, and a good ducking
the only result, which in the end was the luckiest thing that could have
befallen him. On reaching the Hathidarra, or ‘barrier of the elephant’
(a very appropriate designation for a mass of rock serving as a rampart
to shut up the pass), where we had intended to remain the night, we
found no spot capacious enough even for a single tent. Orders
accordingly passed to the rear for the baggage to collect there, and
wait the return of day to continue the march. The shades of night were
fast descending, and we proceeded almost in utter darkness towards the
banks of the stream, the roar of whose waters was our guide, and not a
little perplexed by the tumultuous rush which issued from every glen, to
join that we were seeking. Towards the termination of the descent the
path became wider, and the voice of the waters of a deeper and hoarser
tone, as they glided to gain the plains of Marwar. The vault of heaven,
in which there was not a cloud, appeared as an arch to the perpendicular
cliffs surrounding us on all sides, and the stars beamed with peculiar
brilliancy from the confined space through which we viewed them. As we
advanced in perfect silence, fancy busily at work on what might befall
our straggling retinue from the ferocious tiger or plundering
mountaineer, a gleam of light suddenly flashed upon us on emerging from
the brushwood, and disclosed a party of dismounted cavaliers seated
round their night-fires under some magnificent fig-trees [678].[4.5.36]

=Meeting with the Mers.=—Halted, and called a council of war to
determine our course: we had gained the spot our guides had assigned as
the only fitting one for bivouac before we reached the plains beyond the
mountains; it afforded shade from the dews, and plenty of water. The
_munitions de bouche_ having gone on was a good argument that we should
follow; but darkness and five miles more of intricate forest, through a
path from which the slightest deviation, right or left, might lead us
into the jaws of a tiger, or the toils of the equally savage Mer,
decided us to halt. We now took another look at the group
above-mentioned. Though the excitement of the morning was pretty well
chilled by cold and hunger (poor sharpeners of the imagination), it was
impossible to contemplate the scene before us without a feeling of the
highest interest. From twenty-five to thirty tall figures, armed at all
points, were sitting or reposing in groups round their watch-fires,
conversing and passing the pipe from hand to hand, while their long
black locks, and motley-fashioned turbans, told that they belonged to
Marudesa. A rude altar, raised in honour of some “gentle blood” shed by
the murky mountaineer, served as a place of rest for the chief of the
party, distinguished by the gold band in his turban, and his deer-skin
doublet. I gave the usual salutation of “Rama, Rama,” to the chief and
his party, and inquired after the health of their chieftain of Ghanerao,
to whose courtesy I found I owed this mark of attention. This was the
boundary between the two States of Marwar and Mewar, since the district
of Godwar was lost by the latter about fifty years ago. The spot has
been the scene of many a conflict, and a closer approach disclosed
several other altars raised in honour of the slain; each represented a
cavalier mounted on his war-steed, with his lance poised, denoting that
in such attitude he fell in defending the pass, or redeeming the cattle
from the plundering mountain Mer. A square tablet placed on each
contained the date on which he gained “the mansions of the sun.”
Midnight being past, and bringing no hope of our appetites growing by
what they might feed upon, Dr. Duncan and Captain Waugh took the _jhul_,
or broadcloth-housing, from the elephant, and rolling themselves in it,
followed the example of the chieftain and reposed upon the ashes of the
brave, on an altar adjoining the one he occupied. I soon left them in
happy forgetfulness of tigers, Meras, hunger, and all the fatigues of
the day, and joined the group to listen to the tale with which they
enlivened the midnight hour. This I can repeat, but it would have
required the pencil of a master to paint the scene. It was a subject for
Salvator Rosa; though I should [679] have been perfectly satisfied with
one of Captain Waugh’s delineations, had he been disposed at that moment
to exert the pictorial art. Several of my friends had encountered the
mountaineer on this very spot; and these humble cenotaphs, covering the
ashes of their kin, recalled events not likely to be repeated in these
halcyon days, when the names of Bhil and Mer cease to be the synonyms of
plunderer. As there may be no place more appropriate for a sketch of the
mountaineers, the reader may transport himself to the glen of
Kumbhalmer, and listen to the history of one of the aboriginal tribes of
Rajasthan [680].

[Illustration: KOLI AND BHIL.]

[Illustration: CHĀRAN OR BARD.]

                     (The Foresters of Rājputana.)
                          _To face page 788._


Footnote 4.25.1:

  The amphitheatre, or circle. [The valley of Udaipur.]

Footnote 4.25.2:

  _Sabun_, in the lingua franca of India, signifies ‘soap.’ [The
  soap-nut tree (_sapindus mukorossi_), the fruit of which is used for
  washing clothes and the hair (Watt, _Comm. Prod._ 979).]

Footnote 4.25.3:

  [Raised by James Skinner (1778-1841), known as “The Yellow Boys,” in
  1823; 1st Irregular Cavalry (Skinner’s Horse), 1840; 1st Bengal
  Cavalry, 1861 (F. G. Cardew, _Sketch of the Services of the Bengal
  Native Army to the Year 1895_).]

Footnote 4.25.4:

  [_Calligonum polygonoides_, a shrub on which camels live for the
  greater part of the year.]

Footnote 4.25.5:

  _Bhanej_, or ‘nephew,’ a title of courtesy enjoyed by every chieftain
  who marries a daughter or immediate kinswoman of the Rana’s house.
  [When Bhīm Singh succeeded in 1793, his first act was to drive his
  uncle, Zālim Singh, the son of a Mewār princess, from Jodhpur. He took
  refuge in Udaipur, and passed the rest of his days in literary
  pursuits. He was a man of charm and ability, a gallant soldier, no
  mean poet. He died in the prime of life in British Merwāra in 1799
  (Erskine iii. A. 70).]

Footnote 4.25.6:

  My guide or instructor, Yati Gyanchandra, a priest of the Jain sect,
  who had been with me ten years. To him I owe much, for he entered into
  all my antiquarian pursuits with zeal.

Footnote 4.25.7:

  [A chiefship in Central India under the Bhopāl Agency. In 1819 Subhāg
  Singh becoming imbecile was replaced by his son Chain Singh, after
  whose death in 1824 he was restored (_IGI_, xviii. 353).]

Footnote 4.25.8:

  [As usual, Jainism and Buddhism are confounded.]

Footnote 4.25.9:

  One of the four Agnikulas. [The Umats were not a distinguished tribe
  until Achal Singh, Dīwān of Narsinghgarh, married his son to a near
  relation of the Mahārāna of Udaipur, and since this alliance many of
  the principal Mālwa families eat with the Rājas of Umatwāra (Malcolm,
  _Memoir of Central India_, 2nd ed. ii. 130 f.). For a full and
  slightly different account see _IGI_, xviii. 382 ff.]

Footnote 4.25.10:

  [Chain Singh quarrelled with the Political Agent, attacked the British
  forces at Sehore, and was killed in the battle in 1824 (_IGI_, xviii.

Footnote 4.25.11:

  Sindhia’s flag is a snake _argent_ on an _orange_ field.

Footnote 4.25.12:

  _Pān_, ‘the leaf’; _parna_ and _pattra_, the Sanskrit for ‘a leaf’;
  and hence _panna_, ‘a leaf or sheet of paper’; and _patra_, ‘a plate
  of metal or sacrificial cup,’ because these vessels were first made of
  leaves. I was amused with the coincidence between the Sanskrit and
  Tuscan _panna_. That lovely subject by Raphael, the “Madonna
  impannata,” in the Pitti Palace at Florence, is so called from the
  subdued light admitted through the window, the panes of which are of
  paper. [The words have no connexion.]

Footnote 4.25.13:

  [A variant of the well-known Fairy Gift legend (Crooke, _Popular
  Religion and Folklore of N. India_, 2nd ed. i. 287 ff.).]

Footnote 4.25.14:

  [The home of the Rāna branch of Guhilots, who take the name of Sesodia
  from it, while Chitor was the capital of the Rāwal branch of the
  ruling house (Erskine ii. A. 15).]

Footnote 4.25.15:

  [Lotus nuts are used for necklaces, but Sannyāsis usually wear those
  of the _rudrāksha_ (_Elaeocarpus ganitrus_) (Watt, _Econ. Dict._ v.
  345; _Comm. Prod._ 511).]

Footnote 4.25.16:

  [_Acacia catechu_, _Capparis aphylla_, _Acacia arabica_.]

Footnote 4.25.17:

  [_Ficus glomerata_, _Annona squamosa_, _Prunus persica_.]

Footnote 4.25.18:

  [Our knowledge of Indian locusts is still imperfect, the best-known
  varieties being the Bombay and the North-West (Watt, _Econ. Dict._ vi.
  Part i. 154 f.; _Comm. Prod._ 686).]

Footnote 4.25.19:

  [A kind of cucumber, _Cucumis utilissimus_ (Watt, _Comm. Prod._ 439).]

Footnote 4.25.20:

  [Chaturbhuja Vishnu.]

Footnote 4.25.21:

  [‘The Barrier.’]

Footnote 4.25.22:

  [‘The Onset.’]

Footnote 4.25.23:

  [‘That of the monkey god,’ a common guardian of forts.]

Footnote 4.25.24:

  [Chaugān, ‘the Parade Ground.’]

Footnote 4.25.25:

  At four o’clock P.M., same position, thermometer 81°; barometer, 26°

Footnote 4.25.26:

  [3658 feet.]

Footnote 4.25.27:

  [Samprati was grandson of Asoka, and he is credited with the erection
  of many Jain buildings (Smith, _EHI_, 192 f.; _BG_, i. Part i. 15).
  From the picture of the temple given by the author, and from an
  inscription of the reign of Rāna Sangrām Singh (A.D. 1508-27), it
  could not have been more than three centuries old when he saw it
  (_IA_, ii. 205). There are two temples, one consisting of a square
  sanctuary with a vaulted dome, and surrounded by a colonnade of
  elegant pillars: the second is of peculiar design, having three
  stories, each tier being decorated with massive low columns (Erskine
  ii. A. 116).]

Footnote 4.25.28:

  See note, p. 37, above.

Footnote 4.25.29:

  These people assert their Coptic origin: being driven from Egypt by
  one of the Pharaohs, they wandered eastwards till they arrived under
  that peak of the mountains west of the Indus called Sulaiman-i-koh, or
  ‘Hill of Solomon,’ where they halted. Others draw their descent from
  the lost tribes. They are a very marked race, and as unsettled as
  their forefathers, serving everywhere. They are fine gallant men, and,
  when managed by such officers as Skinner, make excellent and orderly
  soldiers; but they evince great contempt for the eaters of swine, who
  are their abomination. [The Rohillas, ‘Highlanders,’ are a Pathān
  tribe which occupied Rohilkhand after the death of Aurangzeb, A.D.
  1707 (Crooke, _Tribes and Castes N.W.P. and Oudh_, iv. 165 f.).]

Footnote 4.25.30:

  From the ruins of its temples, remnants of Takshak architecture, the
  amateur might speedily fill a portfolio. This tract abounds with
  romantic scenery: Rajmahall on the Banas, Gokaran, and many others.
  Herbert calls Chitor the abode of Taxiles, the ally of Alexander. The
  Taks were all of the race of Puru, so that Porus is a generic, not a
  proper name. This Taksilanagar has been a large city. We owe thanks to
  the Emperor Babur, who has given us the position of the city of
  Taxiles, where Alexander left it, west of the Indus. [The Tāk tribe
  had no connexion with Chitor.]

Footnote 4.25.31:

  See p. 344 [Vol. I.].

Footnote 4.25.32:

  [The Muharram festival.]

Footnote 4.25.33:

  [Ahadi, ‘single, alone,’ like our warrant-officer, a gentleman trooper
  in the Mughal service, so called because they offered their services
  singly, and did not attach themselves to any chief (_Āīn_, i. 20,
  note; Irvine, _Army of the Indian Moghuls_, 43).]

Footnote 4.25.34:

  [This is the Rājput story which lacks confirmation from Muhammadan
  sources. The captive may have been Ghiyāsū-d-dīn of Mālwa, or Muzaffar
  Shāh of Gujarāt; but it is probably fiction invented by the Mewār
  bards (Erskine ii. A. 18).]

Footnote 4.25.35:

  See Annals, p. 353.

Footnote 4.5.36:

  The bar or banyan tree, _Ficus Indica_.


                               CHAPTER 26

=The Mer Tribe.=—The Mer or Mera is the mountaineer of Rajputana, and
the country he inhabits is styled Merwara, or ‘the region of hills.’ The
epithet is therefore merely local, for the Mer is but a branch of the
Mina or Maina, one of the aborigines of India. He is also called Merot
and Merawat; but these terminations only more correctly define his
character of mountaineer.[4.26.1] Merwara is that portion of the
Aravalli chain between Kumbhalmer and Ajmer, a space of about ninety
miles in length, and varying in breadth from six to twenty. The general
character of this magnificent rampart, in the natural and physical
geography of Rajputana, is now sufficiently familiar. It rises from
three to four thousand feet above the level of the sea, and abounds with
a variety of natural productions. In short, I know no portion of the
globe which would yield to the scientific traveller more abundant
materials for observation than the alpine Aravalli. The architectural
antiquary might fill his portfolio, and natural history would receive
additions to her page in every department, and especially in botany and
zoology.[4.26.2] I [681] should know no higher gratification than to be
of a scientific party to anatomize completely this important portion of
India. I would commence on the Gujarat, and finish on the Shaikhawat
frontier. The party should consist of a skilful surveyor, to lay down on
a large scale a topographical chart of the mountains; several gentlemen
thoroughly versed in natural history; able architectural and landscape
draughtsmen, and the antiquary to transcribe ancient inscriptions, as
well as to depict the various races. The “Aravalli delineated,” by the
hand of science, would form a most instructive and delightful work.

A minute account of the Mer, his habits and his history, would be no
unimportant feature: but as this must be deferred, I will, in the
meanwhile, furnish some details to supply the void.

The Mers are a branch of the Chitas, an important division of the
Minas.[4.26.3] I shall elsewhere enter at large into the history of this
race, which consists of as many branches as their conquerors, the
Rajputs. All these wild races have the vanity to mingle their pedigree
with that of their conquerors, though in doing so they stigmatize
themselves. The Chita-Minas accordingly claim descent from a grandson of
the last Chauhan emperor of Delhi. Anhul and Anup were the sons of
Lakha, the nephew of the Chauhan king. The coco-nut was sent from
Jaisalmer, offering princesses of that house in marriage: but an
investigation into their maternal ancestry disclosed that they were the
issue of a Mina concubine: and their birth being thus revealed, they
became exiles from Ajmer, and associates with their maternal relatives.

Anhul espoused the daughter of a Mina chieftain, by whom he had Chita,
whose descendants enjoy almost a monopoly of power in Merwara. The sons
of Chita, who occupied the northern frontier near Ajmer, became
Muhammadans about fifteen generations ago, when Duda, the sixteenth from
the founder of the race, was created Dawad Khan by the Hakim of Ajmer;
and as Hathun was his residence, the “Khan of Hathun” signified the
chief of the Merots. Chang, Jhak, and Rajosi are the principal towns
adjoining Hathun. Anup also took a Mina wife, by whom he had Barar,
whose descendants have continued true [682] to their original tenets.
Their chief places are Barar, Berawara, Mandila, etc. Though the progeny
of these Minas may have been improved by the infusion of Rajput blood,
they were always notorious for their lawless habits, and for the
importance attached to them so far back as the period of Bisaldeo, the
celebrated prince of Ajmer, whom the bard Chand states to have reduced
them to submission, making them “carry water in the streets of Ajmer.”
Like all mountaineers, they of course broke out whenever the hands of
power were feeble. In the battle between the Chauhans of Ajmer and the
Parihars of Mandor, a body of four thousand Mer bowmen served Nahar Rao,
and defended the pass of the Aravalli against Prithiraj in this his
first essay in arms. Chand thus describes them:[4.26.4] “Where hill
joins hill, the Mer and Mina thronged. The Mandor chief commanded that
the pass should be defended—four thousand heard and obeyed, each in form
as the angel of death—men who never move without the omen, whose arrow
never flies in vain—with frames like India’s bolt—faithful to their
word, preservers of the land and the honour[4.26.5] of Mandor; whose
fortresses have to this day remained unconquered—who bring the spoils of
the plains to their dwellings. Of these in the dark recesses of the
mountains four thousand lay concealed, their crescent-formed arrows
beside them. Like the envenomed serpent, they wait in silence the
advance of the foe.

=Prithirāj attacks the Mers.=—“Tidings reached the Chauhan that the
manly Mina, with bow in hand, stood in the mountain’s gorge. Who would
be bold enough to force it? his rage was like the hungry lion’s when he
views his prey. He called the brave Kana, and bade him observe those
wretches as he commanded him to clear the pass. Bowing he departed, firm
as the rock on which he trod. He advanced, but the mountaineer (Mer) was
immovable as Sumeru. Their arrows, carrying death, fly like Indra’s
bolts—they obscure the sun. Warriors fall from their steeds, resounding
in their armour as a tree torn up by the blast. Kana quits the steed;
hand to hand he encounters the foe; the feathery shafts, as they strike
fire, appear like birds escaping from the flames. The lance flies
through the breast, appearing at the back [683], like a fish escaping
through the meshes of a net. The evil spirits dance in the mire of
blood. The hero of the mountain[4.26.6] encountered Kana, and his blow
made him reel; but like lightning it was returned, and the mountaineer
fell: the crash was as the shaking of Sumeru. At this moment Nahar
arrived, roaring like a tiger for his prey: he called aloud to revenge
their chief, his brother,[4.26.7] and fresh vigour was infused into
their souls. On the fall of the mountain-chief, the Chauhan commanded
the ‘hymn of triumph’[4.26.8] to be sounded; it startled the
mountaineer, but only to nerve his soul afresh. In person the Chauhan
sought his foe. The son of Somesa is a bridegroom. His streaming
standards flutter like the first falls of rain in Asarh, and as he steps
on the bounds which separate Mandor from Ajmer, ‘Victory! victory!’ is
proclaimed. Still the battle rages. Elephants roar, horses neigh, terror
stalks everywhere. The aids of Girnar[4.26.9] and of Sind now appeared
for Mandor, bearing banners of every colour, varied as the flowers of
the spring. Both arrays were clad in mail; their eyes and their
finger-nails alone were exposed; each invoked his tutelary protector as
he wielded the _dodhara_.[4.26.10] Prithiraj was refulgent as Indra; the
Parihar’s brightness was as the morning star; each was clad in armour of
proof, immovable as gods in mortal form. The sword of the Chauhan
descended on the steed of the Parihar; but as he fell, Nahar sprung
erect, and they again darted on each other, their warriors forming a
fortress around the persons of their lords. Then advanced the standards
of the Pramar, like a black rolling cloud, while the lightnings flashed
from his sword. Mohana, the brother of Mandor, received him; they first
examined each other—then joining in the strife, the helm of the Pramar
was cleft in twain. Now advanced Chawand, the Dahima; he grasped his
iron lance,[4.26.11]—it pierced the Parihar, and the head appeared like
a serpent looking through the door in his back. The flame (_jyot_)
united with the fire from which it sprung, while the body fell on its
parent earth. By his devotion the sins of his life were forgiven. Nobly
did the tiger (Nahar) of Mandor meet the lion of the world. He called
aloud, ‘Hold your ground as did Bal Raja of old.’ Again the battle
rages—Durga gluts herself with blood [684]—the air resounds with the
clash of arms and the rattling of banners—the Aswar[4.26.12] rains on
the foe—Khetrpal[4.26.13] sports in the field of blood—Mahadeva fills
his necklace—the eagle gluts itself on the slain—the mien of the
warriors expands as does the lotos at the sunbeam—the war-song
resounds—with a branch of the tulasi on the helm, adorned in the saffron
robe, the warriors on either side salute each other.” The bard here
exclaims, “But why should I enlarge on this encounter?”—but as this
digression is merely for breathing time, we shall not follow him, the
object being to introduce the mountain Mer, whom we now see _hors de

=Character of the Mers.=—Admitting the exaggeration of the poet, the Mer
appears to have been in the twelfth century what he is in the
nineteenth, a bold, licentious marauder. He maintained himself
throughout the whole of the Mogul domination, alternately succumbing and
depredating; and since the Mahrattas crippled these countries, the Mer
had regained all his consequence, and was rapidly encroaching upon his
Rajput suzerain. But when in 1821 their excesses made it imperative to
reduce their holds and fastnesses, they made no stand against the three
battalions of sepoys sent against them, and the whole tract was
compelled to obedience; not, however, till many of the descendants of
Chita and Barar had suffered both in person and property.[4.26.14] The
facility with which we reduced to entire subjection this extensive
association of plunderers, for centuries the terror of these countries,
occasioned no little astonishment to our allies. The resistance was
indeed contemptible, and afforded a good argument against the prowess of
those who had tolerated the existence of a gang at once so mischievous
and weak. But this was leaping to a conclusion without looking beneath
the surface, or to the moral and political revolution which enervated
the arms of Mer and Mahratta, Pindari and Pathan. All rose to power from
the common occupation of plunderers, aided by the national jealousies of
the Rajputs. If the chieftains of Mewar leagued to assault the
mountaineers, they found refuge and support in Marwar; and as their
fortresses at all times presented a sanctuary, their Rawats or leaders
obtained consequence amongst all parties by granting it. Every Mer
community, accordingly, had a perfect understanding with the chieftain
whose lands were contiguous to their own, and who enjoyed rights granted
by the Rana over these nominal subjects. These rights were all of a
feudal nature, as _rakhwali_ or ‘blackmail’ [685], and those petty
proofs of subordination, entitled in the feudal law of Europe “petit
serjanterie.” The token might be a colt, a hawk, or a bullock, and a
_nazarana_, or pecuniary acknowledgement, perhaps only of half-a-crown
on the chieftain’s birthday, or on the Rajput Saturnalia, the Holi. But
all these petty causes for assimilation between the Rajput and the
lawless Mer were overlooked, as well as the more powerful one which
rendered his arms of no avail. Every door was hermetically sealed
against him; wherever he looked he saw a foe—the magical change
bewildered him; and when their Khan and his adherents were assailed
while in fancied security, and cut off in a midnight attack, his
self-confidence was annihilated—he saw a red-coat in every glen, and
called aloud for mercy.

=The Merwāra Battalion.=—A corps of these mountaineers, commanded by
English officers, has since been formed, and I have no doubt may become
useful.[4.26.15] Notwithstanding their lawless habits, they did not
neglect agriculture and embanking, as described in the valley of Shera
Nala, and a district has been formed in Merwara which in time may yield
a lakh of rupees annually to the state.

=Marriage Customs.=—Some of their customs are so curious, and so
different from those of their lowland neighbours, that we may mention a
few. Leaving their superstitions as regards omens and auguries, the most
singular part of their habits, till we give a detailed sketch of the
Minas hereafter, I will notice the peculiarity of their notions towards
females. The Mer, following the customary law handed down from his rude
ancestry, and existing long before the written law of Manu, has no
objection to a widow as a wife. This contract is termed _nata_, and his
civilized master levies a fine or fee of a rupee and a quarter for the
licence, termed _kagli_. On such marriage the bridegroom must omit in
the _maur_, or nuptial coronet, the graceful palmyra leaf, and
substitute a small branch of the sacred pipal wreathed in his turban.
Many of the forms are according to the common Hindu ritual. The
_sat-phera_, or seven perambulations round the jars filled with grain,
piled over each other—the _ganth-jora_, or uniting the garments—and the
_hathleva_, or junction of hands of bride and bridegroom, are followed
by the Mers. Even the northern clans, who are converts to Islam, return
to their ancient habits on this occasion, and have a Brahman priest to
officiate. I discovered, on inquiring into the habits of the Mers, that
they are not the only race which did not refuse to wed a widow, and that
both Brahmans and Rajputs have from ancient times been accustomed not to
consider it derogatory [686].[4.26.16] Of the former, the sacerdotal
class, the Nagda[4.26.17] Brahmans, established at this town long before
the Guhilots obtained power in Mewar. Of the Rajputs, they are all of
the most ancient tribes, now the allodial vassals or Bhumias of
Rajputana, as the Chinana, Kharwar, Uten, Daya, names better known in
the mystic page of the chronicle than now, though occasionally met with
in the valleys of the Aravalli. But this practice, so little known,
gives rise to an opinion, that many of the scrupulous habits regarding
women are the inventions of the priests of more modern days. The
facilities for separation are equally simple. If tempers do not
assimilate, or other causes prompt them to part, the husband tears a
shred from his turban, which he gives to his wife, and with this simple
bill of divorce, placing two jars filled with water on her head, she
takes whatever path she pleases, and the first man who chooses to ease
her of her load becomes her future lord. This mode of divorce is
practised not only amongst all the Minas, but by Jats, Gujars, Ahirs,
Malis, and other Sudra tribes. _Jehar le aur nikali_, ‘took the jar and
went forth,’ is a common saying amongst the mountaineers of Merwara.

=Oaths, Food, Omens.=—Their invocations and imprecations are peculiar.
The Chita or northern Mer, since he became acquainted with the name of
the prophet, swears by ‘Allah,’ or by his first proselyte ancestor,
‘Duda Dawad Khan,’ or the still more ancient head of the races, ‘_Chita,
Barar ka an_‘. The southern Mers also use the latter oath: “By my
allegiance to Chita and Barar”; and they likewise swear by the sun,
‘_Suraj ka Sagun_,’ and ‘_Nath ka Sagun_’; or their ascetic priest,
called the Nath. The Muhammadan Mer will not now eat hog; the southron
refuses nothing, though he respects the cow from the prejudices of those
around him, and to please the Nath or Jogi, his spiritual guide. The
partridge and the _maloli_,[4.26.18] or wag-tail, are the chief birds of
omen with him, and the former ‘clamouring’ on the left, when he
commences a foray, is a certain presage of success. To conclude;
colonies of the Mers or Meras will be found as far north as the Chambal,
and even in the peninsula of Saurashtra. Merwara is now in subjection to
the Rana of Mewar, who has erected small forts amidst the most
influential communities to overawe them. The whole tract has been
assessed; the chiefs of the districts being brought to the Rana’s
presence presented _nazarana_, swore fidelity, and received according to
their rank gold bracelets or turbans. It was an era in the annals of
Mewar to see the accumulated arms of Merwara piled upon the [687]
terrace of the palace at the capital; but these measures were subsequent
to our sojourn in the glen of Kumbhalmer, from which we have yet to
issue to gain Marwar.

=The Chief of Gokulgarh.=—_October 21._—All hailed the return of
daylight with reverence. Captain Waugh and the Doctor uncoiled from the
elephant’s _jhul_, and I issued from my palki, which had proved a
welcome retreat against the chills of the night air. By thirst and
hunger our appetite for the picturesque was considerably abated, and the
contemplation of the spot where we had bivouaced in that philosophical
spirit of silence, which all have experienced who have made a long march
before breakfast, lost much of its romantic interest. Nevertheless,
could I have consulted merely my own wishes, I would have allowed my
friends and escort to follow the canteen, and have pursued an intricate
path which branched off to the right, to have had the chance of an
interview with the outlaw of Gokulgarh.

This petty chieftain, who enjoyed the distinctive epithet of outlaw
(_barwatia_), was of the Sonigira clan (a branch of the Chauhans), who
for centuries were the lords of Jalor. He was a vassal of Marwar, now
sovereign of Jalor, and being expelled for his turbulence by his prince,
he had taken post in the old ruined castle of Gokulgarh, on a cliff of
the Aravalli, and had become the terror of the country. By his knowledge
of the intricacies of the mountains, he eluded pursuit; and his misdeeds
being not only connived at, but his spoils participated by the chief of
Deogarh, in whose fief was his haunt, he was under no apprehension of
surprise. Inability either to seize the Barwatia, or drive him from his
retreat, formed a legitimate excuse for the resumption of Gokulgarh, and
the dues of ‘blackmail’ he derived from its twelve dependent villages.
The last act of the Sonigira was most flagrant; he intercepted in the
plains of Godwar a marriage procession, and made captives the bridegroom
and bride, whom he conveyed to Gokulgarh, where they long languished for
want of ransom. A party was formed to lie in wait for him; but he
escaped the snare, and his retreat was found empty. Such was the state
of society in these districts. The form of outlawry is singular in this
country, where the penal laws are satisfied with banishment, even in
cases of treason, instead of the sanguinary law of civilization. The
criminal against whom the sentence of exile is pronounced being called
into his prince’s presence, is clad in black vestments, and placed upon
a black steed, his arms and shield all of the same sombre hue of
mourning and [688] disgrace; he is then left to gain the frontier by
himself. This custom is very ancient: the Pandu brothers were
‘Barwatias’[4.26.19] from the Jumna three thousand years ago. The
Jaisalmer annals relate the solemnity as practised towards one of their
own princes; and the author, in the domestic dissensions of Kotah,
received a letter from the prince, wherein he demands either that his
rights should be conceded, or that the government would bestow the
“black garment,” and leave him to his fate.

=The Chief of Ghānērāo.=—Conversing on these and similar subjects with
my Marwari friends, we threaded our way for five miles through the
jungles of the pass, which we had nearly cleared, when we encountered
the chieftain of Ghanerao at the head of his retinue, who of his own
accord, and from a feeling of respect to his ancient sovereign the Rana,
advanced thus far to do me honour. I felt the compliment infinitely the
more, as it displayed that spirit of loyalty peculiar to the Rajput,
though the step was dangerous with his jealous sovereign, and ultimately
was prejudicial to him. After dismounting and embracing, we continued to
ride to the tents, conversing on the past history of the province, of
his prince, and the Rana, after whom he affectionately inquired. Ajit
Singh is a noble-looking man, about thirty years of age, tall, fair, and
sat his horse like a brave Rathor cavalier. Ghanerao is the chief town
of Godwar, with the exception of the commercial Pali, and the
garrison-post Desuri. From this important district the Rana could
command four thousand Rathors holding lands on the tenure of service, of
whom the Ghanerao chief, then one of the sixteen nobles of Mewar, was
the head. Notwithstanding the course of events had transferred the
province, and consequently his services, from the Rana of Udaipur to the
Raja of Jodhpur, so difficult is it to eradicate old feelings of loyalty
and attachment, that the present Thakur preferred having the sword of
investiture bound on him by his ancient and yet nominal suzerain, rather
than by his actual sovereign. For this undisguised mark of feeling,
Ghanerao was denuded of its walls, which were levelled to the ground; a
perpetual memento of disgrace and an incentive to vengeance: and
whenever the day arrives that the Rana’s herald may salute him with the
old motto, “Remember Kumbhalmer,” he will not be deaf to the call. To
defend this post was the peculiar duty of his house, and often have his
ancestors bled in maintaining it against the Mogul. Even now [689], such
is the inveteracy with which the Rajput clings to his honours, that
whenever the Ghanerao chief, or any of his near kin, attend the Rana’s
court, he is saluted at the porte, or at the champ de Mars, by a silver
mace-bearer from the Rana, with the ancient war-cry, “Remember
Kumbhalmer,” and he still receives on all occasions of rejoicing a
khilat from that prince. He has to boast of being of the Rana’s blood,
and is by courtesy called “the nephew of Mewar.” The Thakur politely
invited me to visit him; but I was aware that compliance would have
involved him in difficulties with his jealous prince, and made excuses
of fatigue, and the necessity of marching next morning, the motives of
which he could not misunderstand.

Our march this morning was but short, and the last two miles were in the
plains of Marwar, with merely an occasional rock. Carey joined us,
congratulating himself on the ducking which had secured him better fare
than we had enjoyed in the pass of Kumbhalmer, and which fastened both
on Waugh and myself violent colds. The atmospheric change was most
trying: emerging from the cold breezes of the mountains to 96° of
Fahrenheit, the effect was most injurious: it was 58° in the morning of
our descent into the glen. Alas! for my surviving barometer! Mahesh, my
amanuensis, who had been entrusted with it, joined us next day, and told
me the quicksilver had contrived to escape; so I lost the opportunity of
comparing the level of the desert with the plains of Marwar.

=The Chief of Rūpnagar.=—_October 27._—Halted to collect the scattered
baggage, and to give the men rest; the day was nearly over before the
whole came up, each party bringing lamentable reports of the disastrous
descent. I received a visit from the chief of Rupnagar, who, like the
Thakur of Ghanerao, owes a divided allegiance to the courts on each side
the mountains. His castle, which gives him rank as one of the most
conspicuous of the second grade of the Rana’s nobles, was visible from
the camp, being placed on the western face of the mountains, and
commanding a difficult passage across them. From thence he looks down
upon Desuri and his ancient patrimony, now transferred with Godwar to
the Rathor prince; and often has he measured his lance with the present
occupants to retain his ancient _bhum_, the right derived from the
cultivating proprietor of the soil. The chief of Rupnagar is of the
Solanki race, a lineal descendant of the sovereigns of Nahrwala, and the
inheritor [690] of the war-shell of the celebrated monarch
Siddhraj,[4.26.20] one of the most powerful who ever sat on an eastern
throne, and who occupied that of Anhilwara from A.D. 1094, during half a
century, celebrated as a patron of literature and the arts. When in the
thirteenth century this State was destroyed, the branches found refuge,
as already described, in Mewar; for the ancestor of Rupnagar was brother
to the father of “the star of Badnor,” and was invested with the estate
and lands of Desuri by the same gallant prince who obtained her hand by
the recovery of her father’s estates. The anecdote is worthy of
relation, as showing that the Rajput will stop at nothing “to obtain
land.” The intestine feuds amongst Rana Raemall’s sons, and his constant
warfare with the kings of Delhi and Malwa, made his authority very
uncertain in Godwar. The Mina and Mer possessed themselves of lands in
the plains, and were supported by the Madrecha descendant of the once
independent Chauhan sovereigns of Nadol, the ancient capital of this
region. Sand, the Madrecha, had obtained possession of Desuri, the
garrison town. To expel him, the prince had recourse to Sada, the
Solanki, whose son was married to the daughter of the Madrecha. The
bribe for the reward of this treachery was to be the grant in perpetuity
of Desuri and its lands. Sada’s son readily entered into the scheme; and
to afford facilities for its execution he went with his wife to reside
at Desuri. It was long before an opportunity offered; but at length the
marriage of the young Madrecha to the daughter of Sagra the Balecha was
communicated to the Solanki by his son; who told his father “to watch
the smoke ascending from the tower of Desuri,” as the signal for the
attempt to get possession. Anxiously did Sand watch from his castle of
Sodhgarh the preconcerted sign, and when the volume of black smoke
ascended, he rushed down from the Aravalli at the head of his retainers.
The mother-in-law of the young Solanki sent to know why he should make a
smoke as if he were burning a corpse, when her son must be returning
with his bride. Soon she heard the clash of arms; the Solankis had
entered and fired the town, and the bridal party appeared before success
was attained. Spears and swords were plied. “’Ware the bull!” (_sand_),
said the Madrecha, as he encountered his foe. “My name is the lion
(_singh_) who will [691] devour the bull,” replied the Solanki. The
contest was fierce, but the Madrechas were slain, and in the morn
Prithiraj was put in possession of Desuri. He drew out a grant upon the
spot, inserting in it a curse against any of Sesodia blood who might
break the bond which had restored the Rathor authority in Godwar.
Although seventeen generations have passed since this event, the feud
has continued between the descendants of the lion of Sodhgarh and the
bull of Desuri, though the object of dissension is alienated from both.

=The Chief of Ghānērāo. The Rājputs of Mewār and Mārwār compared.=—I
could well have dispensed with visits this day, the thermometer being
96°; I was besides devoured with inflammatory cold; but there was no
declining another polite visit of the chieftain of Ghanerao. His retinue
afforded a good opportunity of contrasting the Sesodia Rajput of fertile
Mewar with the Rathors of Marwar, and which on the whole would have been
favourable to the latter, if we confined our view to those of the valley
of Udaipur, or the mountainous region of its southern limit, where
climate and situation are decidedly unfavourable. There the Rajput may
be said not only to deteriorate in muscular form and strength, but in
that fairness of complexion which distinguishes him from the lower
orders of Hindus. But the danger of generalizing on such matters will be
apparent when it is known that there is a cause continually operating to
check and diminish the deteriorating principle arising from the climate
and situation (or, as the Rajput would say, from the _hawa pani_, ‘air
and water’) of these unhealthy tracts; namely, the continual influx of
the purest blood from every region in Rajputana: and the stream which
would become corrupt if only flowing from the commingling of the
Chondawats of Salumbar and the Jhalas of Gogunda (both mountainous
districts), is refreshed by that of the Rathors of Godwar, the Chauhans
of Haraoti, or the Bhatti of the desert. I speak from conviction, the
chieftains above mentioned affording proofs of the evil resulting from
such repeated intermarriages; for, to use their own adage, “a raven will
produce a raven.” But though the personal appearance of the chieftain of
Gogunda might exclude him from the table of the sixteen barons of Mewar,
his son by a Rathor mother may be exhibited as a redeeming specimen of
the Jhalas, and one in every way favourable of the Rajput of Mewar. On
such occasion, also, as a formal visit, both chieftain and retainers
appear under every advantage of dress and decoration; for even the form
of the turban may improve the contour of the face, though [692] the
Mertias of Ghanerao have nothing so decidedly peculiar in this way as
those of other clans.

After some discourse on the history of past days, with which, like every
respectable Rajput, I found him perfectly conversant, the Ghanerao chief
took his leave with some courteous and friendly expressions. It is after
such a conversation that the mind disposed to reflection will do justice
to the intelligence of these people: I do not say this with reference to
the baron of Ghanerao, but taking them generally. If by history we mean
the relation of events in succession, with an account of the leading
incidents connecting them, then are all the Rajputs versed in this
science; for nothing is more common than to hear them detail their
immediate ancestry or that of their prince for many generations, with
the events which have marked their societies. It is immaterial whether
he derives this knowledge from the chronicle, the chronicler, or both:
it not only rescues him from the charge of ignorance, but suggests a
comparison between him and those who constitute themselves judges of
nationalities by no means unfavourable to the Rajput.

=Godwār.=—_October 28._—Marched at daybreak. The Thakur sent a
confidential vassal to accompany me through his domain. We could now
look around us, as we receded from the Alpine Aravalli, with nothing to
obstruct the vision, over the fertile plains of Godwar. We passed near
Ghanerao, whose isolated portals, without tower or curtain to connect
them, have a most humiliating appearance. It is to Raja Bhim, some
twenty years ago, that their chieftains owe this degradation, in order
to lessen their ability to recover the province for its ancient master
the Rana. It was indeed one of the gems of his crown, as it is the only
dazzling one in that of Marwar. While we marched over its rich and
beautiful plains, well watered, well wooded, and abounding in fine
towns, I entered into conversation with the Rana’s envoy, who joined me
on the march. Kishandas has already been mentioned as one of the few men
of integrity and wisdom who had been spared to be useful to his country.
He was a mine of ancient lore, and his years, his situation, and his
character gave force to his sentiments of determined independence. He
was as quick as touchwood, which propensity occasionally created a wordy
war between me and my friend, who knew my respect for him. “Restore us
Godwar,” was his abrupt salutation as he joined me on the march: to
which, being a little vexed, as the point could not be agitated by our
government, I said in reply, “Why did you [693] let them take it?—where
has the Sesodia sword slept this half century?” Adding, “God Almighty
never intended that the region on this side the mountains should belong
to Mewar;—nature’s own hand has placed the limit between you.” The old
envoy’s blood was roused as he exclaimed, “Even on this principle Godwar
is ours, for nature has marked our limit by stronger features than
mountains. Observe, as you advance, and you will find to the further
limit of the province every shrub and flower common to Mewar; pass that
limit but a few yards, and they are lost:

                          “Ānwal, ānwal Mewār:
                          Bāwal, bāwal Mārwār.

“Wherever the anwal puts forth its yellow blossoms, the land is of right
ours; we want nothing more. Let them enjoy their stunted babuls, their
karil, and the ak; but give us back our sacred pipal, and the anwal of
the border.”[4.26.21] In truth, the transition is beyond credence
marked: cross but a shallow brook, and you leave all that is magnificent
in vegetation; the pipal, bar, and that species of the mimosa resembling
the cypress, peculiar to Godwar, are exchanged for the prickly shrubs,
as the wild caper, jawas, and many others, more useful than ornamental,
on which the camel browses.[4.26.22] The argument was, however, more
ingenious than just, and the old envoy was here substituting the effect
for the cause; but he shall explain in his own words why Flora should be
permitted to mark the line of demarcation instead of the rock-enthroned
(_Durga_) Cybele. The legend now repeated is historical, and the leading
incidents of it have already been touched upon;[4.26.23] I shall
therefore condense the Pancholi’s description into a summary analysis of
the cause why the couplet of the bard should be deemed “confirmation
strong” of the bounds of kingdoms. These traditionary couplets, handed
down from generation to generation, are the most powerful evidence of
the past, and they are accordingly employed to illustrate the Khyats, or
annals, of Rajputana. When, towards the conclusion of the fourteenth
century, the founder of the Chondawats repaid the meditated treachery of
Ranmall of Mandor by his death, he took possession of that capital and
the entire country of the Rathors (then but of small extent), which he
held for several years. The heir of Mandor became a fugitive, concealing
himself in the fastnesses of the Aravalli, with little hope that [694]
his name (Jodha) would become a patronymic, and that he would be
honoured as the second founder of his country: that Mandor itself should
be lost in Jodhpur. The recollection of the feud was almost extinct; the
young Rana of Chitor had passed the years of Rajput minority, and Jodha
continued a fugitive in the wilds of Bhandak-parao, with but a few horse
in his train, indebted to the resources of some independents of the
desert for the means of subsistence. He was discovered in this retreat
by a Charan or bard, who, without aspiring to prophetic powers, revealed
to him that the intercession of the queen-mother of Chitor had
determined the Rana to restore him to Mandor. Whether the sister of
Jodha, to give éclat to the restoration, wished it to have the
appearance of a conquest, or whether Jodha, impatient for possession,
took advantage of circumstances to make his entrance one of triumph, and
thereby redeem the disgrace of a long and humiliating exile, it is
difficult to decide; for while the annals of Mewar make the restoration
an act of grace, those of Marwar give it all the colours of a triumph.
Were the point worthy of discussion, we should say both accounts were
correct. The Rana had transmitted the recall of Chonda from Mandor, but
concealed from him the motive, and while Jodha even held in his
possession the Rana’s letter of restoration, a concatenation of
circumstances, in which “the omen” was predominant, occurred to make him
anticipate his induction by a measure more consonant to the Rajput, a
brilliant _coup de main_. Jodha had left his retreat in the Run[4.26.34]
to make known to Harbuji Sankhla, Pabuji, and other rievers of the
desert, the changes which the bard had communicated. While he was there,
intelligence was brought that Chonda, in obedience to his sovereign’s
command, had proceeded to Chitor. That same night “the bird of omen
perched on Jodha’s lance, and the star which irradiated his birth shone
bright upon it.” The bard of Mandor revealed the secret of heaven to
Jodha, and the heroes in his train: “Ere that star descends in the west,
your pennon will wave on the battlements of Mandor.” Unless, however,
this “vision of glory” was merely mental, Jodha’s star must have been
visible in daylight; for they could never have marched from the banks of
the Luni, where the Sankhla resided, to Mandor, between its rising and
setting. The elder son of Chonda had accompanied his father, and they
had proceeded two coss in their [695] journey, when a sudden blaze
appeared in Mandor: Chonda pursued his route, while his son Manja
returned to Mandor. Jodha was already in possession; his _an_ had been
proclaimed, and the two other sons of Chonda had fallen in its defence.
Manja, who fled, was overtaken and slain on the border. These tidings
reached Chonda at the pass of the Aravalli; he instantly returned to
Mandor, where he was met by Jodha, who showed him the letters of
surrender for Mandor, and a command that he should fix with him the
future boundary of each State. Chonda thought that there was no surer
line of demarcation than that chalked out by the hand of nature; and he
accordingly fixed that wherever the “yellow blossom” was found, the land
should belong to his sovereign, and the bard was not slow in
perpetuating the decree. Such is the origin of

                          Ānwal, ānwal Mewār:
                          Bāwal, bāwal Mārwār.

The brave and loyal founder of the Chondawats, who thus sacrificed his
revenge to his sovereign’s commands, had his feelings in some degree
propitiated by this arrangement, which secured the entire province of
Godwar to his prince: his son Manja fell, as he touched the region of
the anwalas, and this cession may have been in ‘_mundkati_,’ the
compromise of the price of blood. By such traditional legends, not less
true than strange, and to which the rock sculptures taken from Mandor
bear evidence, even to the heroes who aided Jodha in his enterprise, the
anwal of the Rajputs has been immortalized, like the humble broom of the
French, whose planta-genesta has distinguished the loftiest name in
chivalry, the proudest race emblazoned on the page of heraldry.

Notwithstanding the crops had been gathered, this tract contrasted
favourably with Mewar, although amidst a comparative prosperity we could
observe the traces of rapine; and numerous stories were rehearsed of the
miseries inflicted on the people by the rapacious followers of Amir
Khan. We crossed numerous small streams flowing from the Aravalli, all
proceeding to join the “Salt River,” or Luni. The villages were large
and more populous; yet was there a dulness, a want of that hilarity
which pervaded the peasantry of Mewar, in spite of their misfortunes.
The Rajputs partook of the feeling, the cause of which a little better
acquaintance with their headquarters soon revealed. Mewar had passed
through the period [696] of reaction, which in Marwar was about to
display itself, and was left unfortunately to its own control, or with
only the impulse of a long suppressed feeling of revenge in the bosom of
its prince, and the wiles of a miscreant minister, who wished to keep
him in durance, and the country in degradation.

=Nādol.=—It creates a refreshing sensation to find the camp pitched in a
cool and shaded spot; and at Nadol[4.26.35] we had this satisfaction.
Here again there was no time for recreation, for there was abundant,
nay, overwhelming matter both for the pen and the pencil; but my readers
must be satisfied with the imperfect delineations of the first. Nadol is
still a place of some consequence, though, but for its temples, we
should not have supposed it to have been the capital of a province. With
its neighbour, Narlai, five miles to the westward, it was the abode of a
branch of the Chauhans of Ajmer, established at a very early period.
From Nadol sprung the Deoras of Sirohi, and the Sonigiras of Jalor. The
former still maintain their ground, in spite of all attempts of the
Rathors; but the Sonigira, who was immortalized by his struggle against
the second Ala, is blotted from the list of independent States; and this
valuable domain, consisting of three hundred and sixty towns, is now
incorporated with Jodhpur.

There is no spot in Rajputana that does not contain some record of the
illustrious Chauhan; and though every race has had its career of glory,
the sublimity of which, the annals of the Sesodias before the reader
sufficiently attest, yet with all my partiality for those with whom I
long resided, and with whose history I am best acquainted, my sense of
justice compels me to assign the palm of martial intrepidity to the
Chauhan over all the “royal races” of India. Even the bards, to whatever
family they belong, appear to articulate the very name as if imbued with
some peculiar energy, and dwell on its terminating nasal with peculiar
complacency. Although they had always ranked high in the list of
chivalry, yet the seal of the order was stamped on all who have the name
of Chauhan, since the days of Prithiraj, the model of every Rajput, and
who had a long line of fame to maintain. Of the many names familiar to
the bard is Guga of Bhatinda, who with forty-seven sons “drank of the
stream of the sword” on the banks of the Sutlej, in opposing
Mahmud.[4.26.36] This conqueror proceeded through the desert to the
attack of Ajmer, the chief abode of this race, where his arms were
disgraced, the invader wounded, and forced to relinquish his enterprise
[697]. In his route to Nahrwala and Somnath he passed Nadol,[4.26.37]
whose prince hesitated not to measure his sword even with Mahmud. I was
fortunate enough to obtain an inscription regarding this prince, the
celebrated Lakha, said to be the founder of this branch from Ajmer, of
which it was a fief—its date S. 1039 (A.D. 983).[4.26.38] The fortress
attributed to Lakha is on the declivity of a low ridge to the westward
of the town, with square towers of ancient form, and built of a very
curious conglomerate of granite and gneiss, of which the rock on which
it stands is composed. There was a second inscription, dated S. 1024
(A.D. 968), which made him the contemporary of the Rana’s ancestor,
Sakti Kumar of Aitpur, a city also destroyed, more probably by the
father of Mahmud. The Chauhan bards speak in very lofty terms of Rao
Lakha, who “collected transit dues from the further gate of Anhilwara,
and levied tribute from the prince of Chitor.”

=Remains at Nādol.=—It is impossible to do full justice to the
architectural remains, which are well worthy of the pencil. Here
everything shows that the Jain faith was once predominant, and that
their arts, like their religion, were of a character quite distinct from
those of Siva. The temple of Mahavira, the last of their twenty-four
apostles, is a very fine piece of architecture. Its vaulted roof is a
perfect model of the most ancient style of dome in the East; probably
invented anterior to the Roman. The principle is no doubt the same as
the first substitute of the arch, and is that which marked the genius of
Caesar in his bridge over the Rhone, and which appears over every
mountain torrent of the ancient Helvetii, from whom he may have borrowed
it.[4.26.39] The principle is that of a horizontal instead of a
radiating pressure. At Nadol the stones are placed by a gradual
projection one over the other, the apex being closed by a circular
key-stone. The angles of all these projections being rounded off, the
spectator looking up can only describe the vault as a series of
gradually diminishing amulets or rings converging to the apex. The
effect is very pleasing, though it furnishes a strong argument that the
Hindus first became acquainted with the perfect arch through their
conquerors. The _toran_, in front of the altar of Mahavira, is
exquisitely sculptured, as well as several statues of marble, discovered
about one hundred and fifty years ago in the bed of the river, when it
changed its course. It is not unlikely that they were buried during
Mahmud’s invasion. But [698] the most singular structure of Nadol is a
reservoir, called the _chana ki baoli_, from the cost of it being paid
by the return of a single grain of pulse (_chana_). The excavation is
immense; the descent is by a flight of grey granite steps, and the sides
are built up from the same materials by piling blocks upon blocks of
enormous magnitude, without the least cement.

=Inscriptions and Coins.=—My acquisitions here were considerable.
Besides copies of inscriptions made by my Sanskrit scribes, I obtained
two originals on brass. Of one of these, dated S. 1218, the memorial of
Alandeva, I append a translation,[4.26.40] which may be considered
curious as a formula of endowment of the Jains. I likewise procured
several isolated MS. leaves of very great value, relative to the
thirty-six royal races, to the ancient geography of India, and to the
founding of ancient cities; also a catalogue of longevity of plants and
animals, and an extract from a work concerning the descendants of
Srenika and Samprati, the potent princes of the Jain faith between
Mahavira and Vikrama. However meagre these fragments may be, I have
incorporated their contents into my mosaic. I also made valuable
additions to my collection of medals, for I obtained coins of Mahmud,
Balban, and Ala, surnamed Khuni, or ‘the sanguinary’; and another of a
conqueror equally meriting that title, Nadir Shah. But these were of
little consequence compared with what one of my envoys brought from
Narlai—a small bag full of curious hieroglyphical (if I may so use the
term) medals of the Chauhan princes.[4.26.41] One side represents a
warrior on horseback, compounded out of a character to which I have
applied the above term; on some there was a bull; while others,
retaining the original reverse, have on the obverse the titles of the
first Islamite conquerors, in the same manner as the currency of France
bears the effigies of Louis XVI. and the emblems of the Republic.
Whoever will pay a visit to Nadol will find his labour amply rewarded; I
had only leisure to glean a few of these relics, which yet formed a rich
harvest. Narlai, Bali, Desuri, Sadri, all ancient seats of the Jains,
will yield medals, MSS., and rare specimens of the architectural art.
From Abu to Mandor, the antiquary might fill many portfolios, and
collect matter for volumes of the ancient history of this people, for
this is the cradle of their faith. That I was enabled to obtain so much
during a rapid march through the country arose partly from previous
[699] knowledge, partly from the extent of my means, for I had flying
detachments to the right and left of my route, consisting of intelligent
natives of each city, accompanied by pandits for deciphering, and others
for collecting whatever was the object of research; who, at the close of
each day, brought me the fruits of their inquiries. When any remarkable
discovery was made, I followed it up in person, or by sending those in
whom I could confide. This is not mentioned from a spirit of egotism,
but to incite others to the pursuit by showing the rewards which await
such research.

=Indara.=—_October 29._—Camp at Indara, eleven miles. This small town,
placed on the north bank of one of the nameless feeders of the ‘salt
river,’ is the boundary of Godwar; here the reign of the yellow anwal
terminates, and here commences Marusthali, or ‘the region of death.’ The
transition is great. We can look back upon fertility, and forward on
aridity, which does not, however, imply sterility: for that cunning
artist, nature, compensates the want of verdure and foliage to the
inhabitants of the desert by many spontaneous bounties. An entire race
of cucurbitaceous plants is the eleemosynary equivalent for the mango
and exotics of the central lands of Rajputana; while indigenous poverty
sends forth her commercial sons from Osi, Pali, and Pokaran, to bring
wealth from the Ganges and the Kistna, to the Luni, or to the still more
remote oasis, Jaisalmer. From Indara everything assumed a new character:
the sand, of which we had before scarcely a sprinkling, became
occasionally heavy; the shallow beds of the numerous streams were white
with saline incrustations; and the vegetable creation had been gradually
diminishing, from the giant race of the sacred fig-tree with leaf “broad
as Amazonian targe,” to the dwarfish shrubs of the desert. At once the
satiric stanza of the bard of a more favoured region was brought to my
mind, and as I repeated it to my old friend the Rana’s envoy, he enjoyed
the confession, and afresh urged his wish that nature should decide the
question of their boundaries:

                       _Āk ra jhonpra,
                       Phog ra vār,
                       Bājra ri roti,
                       Motham hari dāl,
                   Dekho ho Raja, teri Marwar._

                       ‘Huts of the āk,
                       Barriers of thorns,
                       Bread of maize,
                       Lentils of the vetch,
                   Behold Raja, your Marwar!’ [700].

=Construction of Villages.=—The villages are of a construction totally
distinct from anything we have seen, and more approaching the wigwam of
the western world. Every commune is surrounded with a circumvallation of
thorns, _kanta ka kot_, and the stacks of _bhus_, or ‘chaff,’ which are
placed at intervals, give it the appearance of a respectable
fortification. These _bhus_ stacks are erected to provide provender for
the cattle in scanty rainy seasons, when the parched earth denies grass,
or full crops of maize. They are erected to the height of twenty or
thirty feet, coated with a cement of earth and cow-dung, and with a
sprinkling of thorns, to prevent the fowls of the air from reposing in
them. In this manner, with a little fresh coating, they will exist ten
years, being only resorted to on emergencies, when the kine may be said
to devour the village walls. Their appearance is a great relief to the
monotony of the march through the desert; which, however, cannot
strictly be said to commence till you cross the Luni.

=Pāli.=—_October 30._—A long march of twenty-one miles, in which there
was little to record, brought us to Pali, the great commercial mart of
western Rajwara. Like everything else in these regions it bore the marks
of rapine; and as in the civil wars of this State its possession was of
great importance to either party, the fortifications were razed at the
desire of the inhabitants, who did not admire the noise of war within
their gates. From the same feeling, when it was proposed to gird the
sister mart, Bhilwara, with walls, the opposition to it was universal.
The remnants of the walls lend it an air of desolation.[4.26.42] The
town is overrated at ten thousand houses. As an emporium its reputation
is of ancient date: and, politically, it is connected with the
establishment of the reigning family in these regions. A community of
Brahmans then held Pali in grant from the princes of Mandor: whence
comes a numerous class, termed Paliwal, who follow mercantile pursuits.
It was in S. 1212 (A.D. 1156) that Siahji, the founder of the Rathor
dynasty and son to the emperor of Kanauj, passed Pali on his return from
a pilgrimage from Dwarka to the Ganges. The Brahmans sent a deputation
to relieve them from two great enemies to their repose, namely, the
Minas of the Aravalli, and the lions, which had become very numerous.
Siahji relieved them from both; but the opportunity “to acquire land”
was too good to be lost, and on the festival of the Holi he put the
leading Brahmans to death, and took possession of Pali.

=The Commerce of Pāli.=—Commerce, in these regions, is the basis of
liberty: even despotism is [701] compelled to leave it unrestrained.
Pali, like Bhilwara, Jhalrapatan, Rani, and other marts, enjoys the
right of electing its own magistrates, both for its municipal
regulations, and the arbitration of all matters connected with
commercial pursuits. It was commerce which freed Europe from the bondage
of feudality; and the towns above cited only require the same happy
geographical position, to play the part of the Hanse towns of Europe.
Like Bhilwara, Pali has its own currency, which, amidst universal
deterioration, it has retained undebased. From remote times, Pali has
been the connecting link between the sea-coast and northern India.
Commercial houses established at Muskat-Mandavi, Surat, and Navanagar
transmit the products of Persia, Arabia, Africa, and Europe, receiving
those of India and Thibet. To enumerate all the articles, it would be
necessary to name the various products of each: from the coast,
elephants’ teeth, rhinoceros’ hides, copper, tin, pewter, dates dried
and moist,[4.26.43] of which there is an immense consumption in these
regions; gum-arabic, borax, coco-nuts, broad-cloths, striped silks,
called _patang_; various dyes, particularly the _kermes_ or crimson;
drugs, especially the oxides of arsenic and quicksilver; spices,
sandal-wood, camphor, tea, _momiai_ or mummy,[4.26.44] which is much
sought after in medicine, and green glass (_kanch_). From Bahawalpur,
soda (_sajji_),[4.26.45] the dyes called _al_[4.26.46] and
_majith_,[4.26.47] matchlocks, dried fruits, asafoetida, Multan
chintzes, and wood for household furniture. From Kotah and Malwa, opium
and chintzes. From Jaipur, various cloths and sugars. From Bhuj, swords
and horses.

[Illustration: JĀT PEASANT OF MĀRWĀR.]


                                                     _To face page 812._

The exports of home production are the two staple articles of salt and
woollens; to which we may add coarse cotton cloths, and paper made in
the town of Pali. The _lois_, or blankets, are disseminated throughout
India, and may be had at from four to sixty rupees per pair; scarfs and
turbans are made of the same material, but not for exportation. But salt
is the chief article of export, and the duties arising therefrom equal
half the land revenue of the country. Of the _agars_, or ‘salt lakes,’
Pachbhadra, Phalodi, and Didwana are the principal, the first being
several miles in circuit [702].

The commercial duties of Pali yielded 75,000 rupees annually, a large
sum in a poor country like Marwar.

=Chāran and Bhāt Carriers.=—The Charans and Bhats, or bards and
genealogists, are the chief carriers of these regions: their sacred
character overawes the lawless Rajput chief; and even the savage Koli
and Bhil, and the plundering Sahariya of the desert, dread the anathema
of these singular races, who conduct the caravans through the wildest
and most desolate regions. The traveller avails himself of such convoy
who desires to proceed to the coast by Jalor, Bhinmal, Sanchor, and
Radhanpur, whence he may pursue his route to Surat, or Muskat-Mandavi.

=Pungiri Temple.=—To the east of Pali about ten miles, there is an
isolated hill, called Pungiri, ‘the hill of virtue,’ which is crowned
with a small temple, said to have been conveyed by a Buddhist magician
from Palitana in Saurashtra. Wherever this ancient and numerous sect
exists, magical skill is always asserted. Here we found our old friend,
Gough, who had been rambling to the south-west amongst Sahariya,
Khosas,[4.26.48] and all the wild beings of these uncivilized tracts, in
search of new breeds of horses. Halted to enjoy his society.

Kairla, 30th.

Rohat, 31st.

=Khānkāni.=—_November 1._—Khankani, on the north bank of the Luni. There
was nothing to arrest attention between Pali and the Luni: all is flat
and lonely in the thirty miles which intervene. Our halts were at
Kairla, which has two small salt lakes, whence its name; in fact, this
superabundant product, _khar_, or salt, gives its name to streams and
towns. Both Kairla and Rohat, the intermediate places of halt, are
feudal estates, and both chiefs had been involved in the recent civil
dissensions: Rohat was under the ban.

=Bhāt Customs. Coercion by Threat of Human Sacrifice.=—Here I had an
exemplification of the vulgar adage, “two of a trade,” etc. Pema Naik,
the leader of one of the largest _tandas_, or caravans, which frequent
the desert for salt, had left his convoy, and with his brethren came
to exhibit his wounds and fractures received in a fray with the
leaders of another caravan. Both were Bhats; Pema was the head of the
Bamania Bhats, so called from the place of their abode, and he counted
forty thousand beasts of burthen under his control. Shama had no
distinctive epithet: he had no home separate from [703] his _tanda_.
His little State when not in motion was on the highways; hence those
who dwell entirely with their cattle are styled _upapanti_, ‘on the
road.’ Shama had taken advantage of the greater portion of Pema’s
caravan being detached to revenge an ancient feud; and had shown
himself quite an adept in club-law, as the broken heads of his
opponents disclosed. To reconcile them was impossible; and as the case
was to be decided, not by the scales of abstract justice but by
calculating which contributed most in duties, Pema by this summary
process, more than from sympathy to his wounded honour, gained a
victory by the exclusion of his rival. As before observed, these
classes take advantage of their sacred character amongst the Rajputs
to become the general carriers of the country: but the advantage which
might result to the State from the respect paid to them is neutralized
by their avarice and constant evasion of the payment of all
established duties. A memorable example of this kind occurred during
the reign of Amra the First with the ancestor of this same Pema. The
Rana would not submit to the insolent demands of the Bhats, when they
had recourse to one of the most sanguinary sacrifices ever
recorded—the threat alone of which is generally sufficient to extort
acquiescence and concession. But the firmness of Amra has been
recorded: and he braved them. Collecting the elder portion of their
community, men, women, and youths of both sexes, they made a sacrifice
to the number of eighty souls with their daggers in the court of the
palace. The blood of the victims was on the Rana’s head.[4.26.49] It
was a species of excommunication, which would have unsettled a weaker
reason; for the Rajput might repose after the murder of a Brahman, but
that of the prophetic Vates would rise against him here and hereafter.
For once they encountered a mind too strong to be shaken; Amra
banished the whole fraternity of Bamania Bhats from his dominions, and
the town of Bamani reverted to the fisc. The edict remained
uncancelled until these days, when amongst the industrious of all
classes whom the proclamations[4.26.50] brought once more to Mewar,
came Pema and his brethren. Although tradition had preserved the
causes of their exile, it had made no alteration in their sentiments
and opinions, and the dagger was always at hand, to be sheathed in
their own flesh whenever provocation called it from the girdle. Pema
beset the Rana in all his rides, demanding a reduction [704] or rather
abolition of duties for his _tanda_; and at length he took up a
position on the terrace fronting the ‘balcony of the sun,’ threatening
a _chandni_,[4.26.51] for such is the term applied to this suicidal
revenge. The Rana, who had not the nerve of his ancestor, sent to me
to beseech my interference: with his messenger, one from me returned
to invite the Bhats to a settlement. They came, as fine, robust,
intrepid a set as I ever saw. We soon came to issue: I urged that
duties must be paid by all who chose to frequent the passes of Mewar,
and that they would get nothing by their present silly mode of
endeavouring to obtain remission; that if they would give a written
agreement to abide by the scale of duties laid down, they should
receive exemption for five hundred out of the forty thousand bullocks
of their _tanda_, and be reinducted into Bamani; if not, there were
daggers (showing them some on the table), and they might begin as soon
as they pleased. I added that, in addition to Rana Amra’s penalty of
banishment, I would recommend confiscation of their entire caravan.
Pema was no fool: he accepted Bamani, and the _muafi_ for five
hundred, and that day received his gold bracelets and clothes of
investiture for Bamani from the Rana.

=Jhālamand.=—_November 2._—Jhalamand, ten miles. Although within one
march of Jodhpur, we were obliged to make an intermediate halt, in order
to arrange the ceremonials of reception; a grave matter with all the
magnates of the East, who regulate all such affairs by slavish precedent
and ancestral wisdom. On such a novel occasion as the reception of an
English envoy at this desert court, they were a good deal puzzled how to
act. They could very well comprehend how an ambassador direct from
majesty should be received, and were not unfamiliar with the formula to
be observed towards a viceregal legation. But the present case was an
anomaly: the Governor of all India, of course, could appear only as the
first servant of a commercial body, which, with whatever privileges
invested, never could be made to rank with royalty or its immediate
emanation. Accordingly, this always proved a clog to our diplomatic
missions, until the diffusion of our power from the Indus to the ocean
set speculation at rest on the formalities of reception of the Company’s
ambassadors. On the other hand, the eternal rotation of military
adventurers enjoying ephemeral power, such as the commanders of the
myrmidons of Sindhia and Holkar, compelled all the Rajput princes to
forgo much of their dignity; and men like Amir Khan, Jean Baptiste, or
Bapu Sindhia, who but a [705] short time ago would have deemed
themselves honoured with a seat in the ante-chamber, claimed equality of
reception with princes. Each made it a subject for boasting, how far he
had honoured himself by the humiliation of the descendant of the emperor
of Kanauj, or the scion of Rama. At the same time, as the world is
always deceived by externals, it was difficult to concede a reception
less distinguished than that granted to the leader of a Mahratta horde;
and here their darling precedent was available. To what distance did the
Raja send the _istikbal_ to meet Amir Khan? what was the rank of the
chieftains so deputed? and to what point did the “offspring of the sun”
condescend to advance in person to receive this “lord of the period”?
All these, and many similar questions, were propounded through the
Wakil, who had long been with me, to his sovereign, to whose presence he
proceeded in order that they might be adjusted, while I halted at
Jhalamand, only five miles from the capital. However individually we may
despise these matters, we have no option, as public servants, but to
demand the full measure of honour for those we represent. As the present
would also regulate future receptions, I was compelled to urge that the
Raja would best consult his own dignity by attending to that of the
government I represented, and distinctly signified that it could never
be tolerated that he should descend to the very foot of his castle to
honour Amir Khan, and await the English envoy almost on the threshold of
his palace. It ended, as such matters generally do in those countries,
by a compromise: it was stipulated that the Raja should receive the
mission in his _palki_ or litter, at the central barrier of
descent.[4.26.52] These preliminaries being arranged, we left Jhalamand
in the afternoon, that we might not derange the habits of slumber of
those who were to conduct us to the capital. About half-way we were met
by the great feudatory chieftains of Pokaran and Nimaj, then lords of
the ascendant, and the joint advisers of their sovereign. We dismounted,
embraced, complimented each other in the customary phraseology; then
remounted, and rode together until we reached the tents, where, after I
had requested them to be the bearers of my homage to their sovereign, we
mutually saluted and parted.

=The Chief of Pokaran.=—Salim Singh[4.26.53] was the name of the lord of
Pokaran, the most wealthy and the [706] most powerful of all the
baronies of Marwar. His castle and estate (wrested from Jaisalmer) are
in the very heart of the desert; the former is strong both by position
and art. It is a family which has often shaken the foundation of the
throne of Marwar. During four generations have its bold and turbulent
chiefs made the most resolute of these monarchs tremble. Deo Singh, the
great grandfather of the present chief, used to sleep in the hall of the
royal palace, with five hundred of his Champawats, of which clan he is
the chief. “The throne of Marwar is within the sheath of my dagger,” was
the boast, as elsewhere mentioned, of this haughty noble to his
sovereign. His son, Sabal Singh, followed his father’s steps, and even
dethroned the great Bijai Singh: a cannon-shot relieved the prince from
this terror of his reign. Sawai Singh, his son and successor, acted the
same part towards Raja Bhim, and was involved in the civil wars which
commenced in 1806, when he set up the pretender, Dhonkal Singh. The
catastrophe of Nagor, in which Amir Khan acted the assassin of the
Champawat and all his associates, relieved Raja Man from the evil genius
of his house; and the honours this prince heaped on the son of the
Champawat, in giving him the first office in the State, were but a trap
to ensnare him. From this he escaped, or his life and the honours of
Pokaran would have been lost together. Such is a rapid sketch of the
family of the chief who was deputed to meet me. He was about thirty-five
years of age; his appearance, though not prepossessing, was dignified
and commanding. In person he was tall, but more powerful than athletic;
his features were good, but his complexion was darker than in general
amongst the chieftains of Marwar.

=The Chief of Nīmāj.=—His companion, and associate in the councils of
his prince, was in every point of personal appearance the reverse of
this portrait. Surthan Singh was chief of the Udawats, a clan which can
muster four thousand swords, all residing on the land skirting the
Aravalli; and of which his residence Nimaj,[4.26.54] Raepur, and
Chandawal are the principal fiefs. Surthan was a fine specimen of the
Rajput; his figure tall and graceful; his complexion fair; his
deportment manly and mild; in short, he was a thorough gentleman in
appearance, understanding, and manners.

It would be impossible to relate here all the causes which involved him
in the catastrophe from which his coadjutor escaped. It was the
misfortune of Surthan to have been associated with Salim Singh; but his
past services to his prince amply counterbalanced this party bias. It
was he who prevented his sovereign from [707] sheathing a dagger in his
heart on the disgraceful day at Parbatsar; and he was one of the four
chieftains of all Marwar who adhered to his fortunes when beset by the
united force of Rajputana. He was also one of the same four who redeemed
the spoils of their country from the hands of the multitudinous array
which assaulted Jodhpur in 1806, and whose fate carried mourning into
every house of Rajasthan.[4.26.55] The death of Surthan Singh was a
prodigal sacrifice, and caused a sensation of universal sorrow, in which
I unfeignedly participated. His gallant bearing was the theme of
universal admiration; nor can I give a better or a juster idea of the
chivalrous Rajput than by inserting a literal translation of the letter
conveying the account of his death, about eight months after my visit to

                              “Jodhpur, 2d Asarh, or 28th June 1820.

“On the last day of Jeth (the 26th June), an hour before daybreak, the
Raja sent the Aligols,[4.26.56] and all the quotas of the chiefs, to the
number of eight thousand men, to attack Surthan Singh. They blockaded
his dwelling in the city, upon which for three watches they kept up a
constant fire of great guns and small arms. Surthan, with his brother
Sur Singh, and his kindred and clan, after a gallant defence, at length
sallied forth, attacked the foreigners sword in hand, and drove them
back. But who can oppose their prince with success? The odds were too
great, and both brothers fell nobly. Nagoji and forty of the bravest of
the clan fell with the Thakur brothers, and forty were severely wounded.
Eighty, who remained, made good their retreat with their arms to
Nimaj.[4.26.57] Of the Raja’s troops, forty were killed on the spot, and
one hundred were wounded. Twenty of the townsfolk suffered in the fray.

“The Pokaran chief, hearing of this, saddled; but the Maharaja sent
Sheonath Singh of Kuchaman, the chief of Bhadrajan, and others, to give
him confidence, and induce him to stay; but he is most anxious to get
away. My nephew and fifteen of my followers were slain on this occasion.
The Nimaj chief fell as became a Rathor. The world exclaims ‘applause,’
and both Hindu and Turk say he met [708] his death nobly. Sheonath
Singh, Bakhtawar Singh, Rup Singh, and Anar Singh,[4.26.58] performed
the funeral rites.”

Such is the Rajput, when the point of honour is at stake! Not a man of
his clan would have surrendered while their chief lived to claim their
lives; and those who retreated only preserved them for the support of
the young lord of the Udawats [709]!


Footnote 4.26.1:

  _Meru_ is ‘a [fabulous] mountain’ in Sanskrit; Merawat and Merot, ‘of
  or belonging to the mountain.’ I have before remarked that the name of
  the Albanian mountaineer, Mainote, has the same signification. I know
  not the etymology of _Mina_, of which the Mer is a branch. [Needless
  to say, whatever the meaning of the title Mer may be, it has no
  connexion with Mt. Meru. The traditions of the Mers point to Mīna
  ancestry. For the Mīna tribe see Rose, _Glossary_, iii. 102 ff.;
  Watson, _Rajputāna Gazetteer_, i. A. 29 ff.]

Footnote 4.26.2:

  I had hoped to have embodied these subjects with, and thereby greatly
  to have increased the interest, of my work; but just as Lord Hastings
  had granted my request, that an individual eminently qualified for
  those pursuits should join me, a Higher Power deemed it fit to deny
  what had been long near my heart.

  The individual, John Tod, was a cousin of my own, and possessed an
  intellect of the highest order. He was only twenty-two years of age
  when he died, and had only been six months in India. He was an
  excellent classical scholar, well versed in modern languages and every
  branch of natural history. His manners, deportment, and appearance
  were all in unison with these talents. Had it pleased the Almighty to
  have spared him, this work would have been more worthy of the public
  notice. [An officer named Tod was murdered at Nāhar Magra, near
  Udaipur, in May 1804 (Malcolm, _Memoir Central India_, 2nd ed. i.

Footnote 4.26.3:

  [The Mers are supposed to be a foreign tribe, like the Gurjaras and
  Mālavas, which passed into Kāthiāwār through the Panjāb, Sind, and N.
  Gujarāt (_BG_, i. Part i. 136 ff.; Elliot-Dowson i. 519 ff.).]

Footnote 4.26.4:

  I cannot discover by what part of the range the invasion of Mandor was
  attempted; it might have been the pass we are now in, for it is
  evident it was not from the frontier of Ajmer.

Footnote 4.26.5:

  _Laj_ is properly ‘shame,’ which word is always used in lieu of
  honour: _laj rakho_, ‘preserve my shame,’ _i.e._ my honour from shame.

Footnote 4.26.6:

  Parbat Vira.

Footnote 4.26.7:

  The Parihar prince bestowed this epithet merely in compliment.

Footnote 4.26.8:

  _Sindhu Raga._

Footnote 4.26.9:

  [The sacred Jain mountain in Kāthiāwār.]

Footnote 4.26.10:

  With two (_do_) edges (_dhara_).

Footnote 4.26.11:

  _Sang_ is the iron lance, either wholly of iron, or having plates for
  about ten feet; these weapons are much used in combats from camels in
  the Desert.

Footnote 4.26.12:

  ‘Sword’—_Aswar_ in the dialect.

Footnote 4.26.13:

  [The field guardian deity.]

Footnote 4.26.14:

  [For an account of the Mer rebellion in 1820 and its suppression see
  Watson, _Rājputāna Gazetteer_, i. A. 14.]

Footnote 4.26.15:

  [The 44th Merwāra Infantry, formerly known as the Merwāra Battalion,
  formed in 1822, did good service in the Mutiny of 1857, and in the
  Afghān campaign of 1878 (Watson, _Gazetteer_, i. A. 119 ff.; Cardew,
  _Sketch of the Services of the Bengal Native Army_, 338 ff.)].

Footnote 4.26.16:

  [No class of Brāhmans or Rājputs, claiming respectability, now permits
  widow marriage.]

Footnote 4.26.17:

  [Nāgda, near the shrine of Eklingji, one of the most ancient places in

Footnote 4.26.18:

  [Elsewhere known as Khanjarīt or Khanjan, a well-known bird of omen.]

Footnote 4.26.19:

  This term is a compound of _bāhar_ and _watan_, literally ‘ex patria.’

Footnote 4.26.20:

  He ruled from A.D. 1094 to 1143.

Footnote 4.26.21:

  [_Ānwal_, _āonla_, _Phyllanthus emblica_; _bāwal_, _babūl_, _Acacia
  arabica_; _karīl_, _Capparis aphylla_; _āk_, _Calotropis gigantea_;
  _pīpal_, _Ficus religiosa_.]

Footnote 4.26.22:

  [_Bar_, _Ficus bengalensis_; _jawās_, _Hedysarum alhagi_.]

Footnote 4.26.23:

  See p. 325.

Footnote 4.26.34:

  An alp, or spot in these mountainous regions, where springs, pasture,
  and other natural conveniences exist.

Footnote 4.26.35:

  [About seventy miles south-south-west of Jodhpur city.]

Footnote 4.26.36:

  [Bhatinda, now Govindgarh, in the Patiāla State (_IGI_, xii. 343). The
  author’s accounts of Gūga or Gugga are contradictory (see Index,
  _s.v._). For this famous saga see Temple, _Legends of the Panjāb_, i.
  121 ff., iii. 261 ff. The cult of the hero has passed as far south as
  Gujarāt, his festival being held on 9th dark half of Bhādon
  (Aug.-Sept.), known as Gūga navami (_BG_, ix. Part i. 524 f.).]

Footnote 4.26.37:

  Ferishta, or his copyist, by a false arrangement of the points, has
  lost Nadole in Buzule, using the ب for the ن and the ذ for the د. [It
  was Kutbu-d-dīn who, on his way to Gujarāt, passed the forts of “Tilli
  and Buzule” (Dow, ed. 1812, i. 147). Briggs (Ferishta i. 196) writes
  “Baly and Nadole.” In the _Tāju-l-Ma-āsir_ of Hasan Nizāmi the names
  are given as “Pāli and Nandūl” (Elliot-Dowson ii. 229). This
  illustrates the difficulty of tracing place names in the Muhammadan

Footnote 4.26.38:

  [Towards the end of the tenth century, Lākhan or Lakshman Singh, a
  younger brother of Wākpatirāj, the Chauhān Rāja of Sāmbhar, settled at
  Nādol, and his descendants ruled the territory till their defeat by
  Kutbu-d-dīn Ibak in 1206-10 (Erskine iii. A. 181 f.).]

Footnote 4.26.39:

  [The temple of Mahāvīra contains three inscriptions, dated A.D. 1609,
  recording its construction from charitable funds. Garrett disputes the
  author’s reference to Caesar, as the buildings are not superior to
  many others in Rājputāna (_ASR_, xxiii. (1887) 93).]

Footnote 4.26.40:

  See Appendix, No. VII.]

Footnote 4.26.41:

  These will appear more appropriately in a disquisition on Hindu medals
  found by me in India, in the _Transactions of the Royal Asiatic
  Society_. [The well-known “Bull and Horseman” type (_IGI_, ii. 142

Footnote 4.26.42:

  [All traces of those walls have disappeared, but in Jūna or ‘Old’ Pāli
  there are some fine temples (_ASR_, xxiii. (1887) 86 ff.).]

Footnote 4.26.43:

  The _kharak_ and _pind khajūr_. [_Kharak_ is the stage when the date
  becomes red or yellow, according to variety; _pind_, when it is quite
  ripe (Watt, _Econ. Dict._ vi. Part i. 205).]

Footnote 4.26.44:

  _Mom_ in the language of Egypt signifies ‘wax,’ says some ancient
  authority: so it is the usual name of that article in Persian. _Mummy_
  is probably thence derived. I remember playing a trick on old Silu,
  our _khabardar_ [spy] at Sindhia’s camp, who had been solicited to
  obtain a piece of _momiai_ for a chieftain’s wife. As we are supposed
  to possess everything valuable in the healing art, he would take no
  refusal; so I substituted a piece of indiarubber. [For the virtues of
  _momiāi_ see Crooke, _Popular Religion and Folklore of N. India_, ii.
  176 ff.]

Footnote 4.26.45:

  [Barilla, Watt, _Econ. Prod._ 112 f.]

Footnote 4.26.46:

  [_Morinda citrifolia_, _ibid._ 783 f.]

Footnote 4.26.47:

  [Madder, _Rubia cordifolia_, _ibid._ 926 f.]

Footnote 4.26.48:

  [The Khosa is a Baloch tribe, many of them found in Sind, where, it is
  said, they were given lands by the Emperor Humāyūn (_Census Report,
  Baluchistan_, 1901, i. 95 f.).]

Footnote 4.26.49:

  [Numerous instances of this custom among Bhāts will be found in _BG_,
  ix. Part i. 209 ff.]

Footnote 4.26.50:

  See Vol. I. p. 561.

Footnote 4.26.51:

  [Platts (_Hindustāni Dict._, _s.v._) gives _chāndni_, ‘moonlight’;
  _chāndni mār-jāna_, ‘to be moonstruck, paralysed by a stroke of the
  moon’; _chāndni karan_, ‘the practice of Brāhmans and others wounding
  themselves in order to extort the payment of a debt.’ Here the threat
  is fear of the ghost of the man who took his life. Sir G. Grierson
  notes that in Gujarāti and Marāthi _chāndi karan_ means ‘to reduce to
  white ashes,’ hence ‘to ruin or destroy completely.’ Here _chāndi_,
  usually meaning ‘silver,’ means ‘anything white,’ and hence ‘white
  ashes.’ This, he suggests, seems to be a more probable explanation
  than ‘moonstruck.’]

Footnote 4.26.52:

  Mr. Wilder, the superintendent of Ajmer, was deputed by General Sir D.
  Ochterlony, in December 1818, to the court of Jodhpur, and was very
  courteously received by the Raja.

Footnote 4.26.53:

  The sibilant is the _Shibboleth_ of the Rajput of Western India, and
  will always detect him. The ‘lion’ (_singh_) of Pokaran is degraded
  into ‘asafoetida’ (_hing_); as _Halim Hing_. [Pokaran, 85 miles N.W.
  of Jodhpur city, held by the premier noble of the Champāwat clan of

Footnote 4.26.54:

  [Nīmāj, about 60 miles E.S.E. of Jodhpur city, fief of a noble of the
  Udāwat Rāthors.]

Footnote 4.26.55:

  See Vol. I. p. 539 for the murder of the princess of Udaipur, one
  of its results.

Footnote 4.26.56:

  The mercenary Rohilla battalions, who are like the Walloons and
  independent companies which formed the first regular armies of Europe.
  [‘Alīgol, ‘noble troop’ (Yule, _Hobson-Jobson_, 2nd ed. 15).]

Footnote 4.26.57:

  Which they afterwards nobly defended during many months.

Footnote 4.26.58:

  The last, a brave and excellent man, was the writer of this letter.
  He, who had sacrificed all to save his prince, and, as he told me
  himself, supported him, when proscribed by his predecessor, by the
  sale of all his property, even to his wife’s jewels, yet became an
  exile, to save his life from an overwhelming proscription. To the
  anomalous state of our alliances with these States is to be ascribed
  many of these mischiefs.



  (From the south-east.)
  _To face page 820._

                               CHAPTER 27

=City and Fort of Jodhpur.=—The sand, since we crossed the Luni, had
become gradually heavier, and was quite fatiguing as we approached the
capital of “the region of death”; but the Marwaris and the camels
appeared to move through it as briskly as our men would on the plains of
the Ganges. The view before the reader will give a more correct idea of
the ‘city of Jodha’ than the most laboured description. The fort is
erected on a mole projecting from a low range of hills, so as to be
almost isolated, while, being higher than the surrounding objects, it is
not commanded. This table-ridge (mountain we can scarcely term it, since
its most elevated portion is not more than three hundred feet in height)
is a curious feature in these regions of uninterrupted aridity. It is
about twenty-five miles in length, and, as far as I could determine from
a bird’s-eye view and from report, between two and three in breadth, the
capital being placed on the highest part at the southern extremity, and
may be said to be detached from it. The northern point, which is the
highest, and on which the palace is built, is less than three hundred
feet. Everywhere it is scarped, but especially at this point, against
which the batteries of the League[4.27.1] were directed in 1806, at
least a hundred and twenty feet of perpendicular height. Strong walls
and numerous round and square towers encircle the crest of the hill,
encompassing a space of great extent, as may be judged from the
dimensions of the base, said to be four miles in circuit. Seven barriers
are thrown across the circuitous ascent, each having immense portals and
their separate guards. There are two small lakes under the walls: the
Rani Talab, or ‘Queen’s Lake,’ to the east; and the Gulab Sagar, or
‘Rose-water Sea,’ to the south, from [710] which the garrison draws up
water in buckets. There is also inside a _kund_, or reservoir, about
ninety feet in depth, excavated from the rock, which can be filled from
these tanks; and there are likewise wells within, but the water is
brackish. Within are many splendid edifices, and the Raja’s residence is
a succession of palaces, each prince since the founder having left
memorials of his architectural taste. The city to the eastward of the
citadel is encompassed by a strong wall, three coss, or nearly six
miles, in extent, on which a hundred and one bastions or towers are
distributed; on the rampart are mounted several _rahkalas_[4.27.2] or
swivels. There are seven gates to the capital, each bearing the name of
the city to which it leads. The streets are very regular, and adorned
with many handsome edifices of freestone, of which the ridge is
composed. The number of families some years ago was stated to be 20,000,
probably 80,000 souls, an estimate far too great for the present
day.[4.27.3] The Gulab Sagar is the favourite lounge of the inhabitants,
who recreate amongst its gardens; and, strange to say, the most
incomparable pomegranates (_anar_) are produced in it, far superior even
to those of Kabul, which they resemble in the peculiarity of being

‘without grain’: rather a misnomer for a fruit, the characteristic of
which is its granulations; but this is in contradistinction to those of
India, which are all grain and little pulp. The _anars_ of the
Kagli-ka-bagh, or ‘Ravens’ Garden,’ are sent to the most remote parts as
presents. Their beautiful ruby tint affords an abundant resource for
metaphor to the Rajput bard, who describes it as “sparkling in the
ambrosial cup.”[4.27.4]

=Reception by the Rāja.=—On the 4th the Raja received us with due form,
advancing beyond the second gate of descent; when, after salutations and
greetings, he returned according to etiquette. Giving him time to make
his arrangements, we advanced slowly through lines of his clansmen to
the upper area, where a display of grandeur met our view for which we
were totally unprepared, and far eclipsing the simple and unostentatious
state of the Rana. Here everything was imitative of the imperial court
of Delhi, where the Rathor, long pre-eminent, had “the right hand of the
king of the world.” Lines of gold and silver mace-bearers deafened us
with the titles of “Raj-Raj-Iswara!” ‘the king, the lord of kings!’ into
whose presence, through mazes of intricate courts filled with his
chivalry, all hushed into that mysterious silence which is invariably
observed on such occasions, we were at length ushered [711].

=Rāja Mān Singh.=—The King of Maru arose from his throne, and advanced a
few paces, when he again courteously received the envoy and suite, who
were here introduced. The hall of reception was of great extent: from
its numerous square columns it is styled Sahas stambha, ‘the
thousand-columned hall.’ They were more massive than elegant; and being
placed in parallel rows, at not more than twelve feet from each other,
they gave an air of cumbrous, if not clumsy grandeur to an immense
apartment, the ceiling of which was very low. About the centre, in a
niche or recess, the royal _gaddi_ or ‘cushion’ was placed, over which
was raised a richly embroidered canopy, supported by silver-gilt
columns. On the Rana’s right hand were placed those whom the king
honoured, the chieftains of Pokaran and Nimaj, who would have been less
at their ease had they known that all the distinctions they then enjoyed
were meshes to ensnare them. Several other chieftains and civil
officers, whose names would but little interest the reader, were placed
around. The wakil, Bishan Ram, was seated near me, almost in front of
the Raja. The conversation was desultory and entirely complimentary;
affording, however, abundant opportunity to the Raja to display his
proficiency in that mixed language, the Hindustani, which he spoke with
great fluency and much greater purity than those who resided about the
court at Delhi. In person the Raja is above the common height,
possessing considerable dignity of manner, though accompanied by the
stiffness of habitual restraint. His demeanour was commanding and
altogether princely; but there was an entire absence of that natural
majesty and grace which distinguished the prince of Udaipur, who won
without exertion our spontaneous homage. The features of Raja Man are
good: his eye is full of intelligence; and though the ensemble of his
countenance almost denotes benevolence, yet there is ever and anon a
doubtful expression, which, with a peculiarly formed forehead, gave a
momentary cast of malignity to it. This might have been owing to that
deep dissimulation, which had carried him through a trial of several
years’ captivity, during which he acted the maniac and the religious
enthusiast, until the assumed became in some measure his natural

The biography of Man Singh would afford a remarkable picture of human
patience, fortitude, and constancy, never surpassed in any age or
country. But in this school of adversity he also took lessons of
cruelty: he learned therein to master or rather disguise his passions;
and though he showed not the ferocity of the tiger, he acquired [712]
the still more dangerous attribute of that animal—its cunning. At that
very time, not long after he had emerged from his seclusion, while his
features were modelled into an expression of complaisant self-content,
indicative of a disdain of human greatness, he was weaving his web of
destruction for numberless victims who were basking in the sunshine of
his favour. The fate of one of them has been already related.[4.27.5]

=Descent of the Rāthors.=—The Rathor, like many other dynasties not
confined to the East, claims celestial descent. Of their Bhat, we may
say what Gibbon does of the Belgic genealogist who traced the
illustrious house of Este from Romulus, that “he riots in all the lust
of fiction, and spins from his own bowels a lineage of some thousand
years.” We are certain that there were sovereigns of Kanauj in the fifth
century, and it is very probable that they ruled there prior to the era
of Christianity. But this is accounted nothing by these lovers of
antiquity, who never stop short of Swayambhuva,[4.27.6] and the ark, in
which the antediluvian records of the Rathors may have been preserved
with those of the De Courcys. But we will not revert to those “happy
times, when a genealogical tree would strike its root into any soil, and
the luxuriant plant could flourish and fructify without a seed of
truth.” Then the ambition of the Rathor for a solar pedigree could be
gratified without difficulty.

But it requires neither Bhat nor bard to illustrate its nobility: a
series of splendid deeds which time cannot obliterate has emblazoned the
Rathor name on the historical tablet. Where all these races have gained
a place in the temple of fame, it is almost invidious to select; but
truth compels me to place the Rathor with the Chauhan, on the very
pinnacle. The names of Chonda and Jodha are sufficient to connect
Siahji, the founder, a scion of Kanauj, with his descendant, Raja
Man:[4.27.7] the rest

              Were long to tell; how many battles fought;
              How many kings destroyed, and kingdoms won.

Let us, therefore, put forth our palm to receive the itr from his august
hand, and the pan, acknowledged by a profound salaam, and bringing the
right hand to my cocked hat, which etiquette requires we should “apply
to the proper use:—’tis for the head,” even in the presence. At all the
native courts the head is covered, and the _en bas_ left bare. It would
be sadly indecorous to walk in soiled boots over their [713] delicate
carpets, covered with white linen, the general seat. The slippers are
left at the door, and it is neither inconvenient nor degrading to sit in
your socks. The Raja presented me with an elephant and horse
caparisoned, an aigrette, necklace, brocades, and shawls, with a portion
according to rank to the gentlemen who accompanied me.

On the 6th I paid the Raja another visit, to discuss the affairs of his
government. From a protracted conversation of several hours, at which
only a single confidential personal attendant of the prince was present,
I received the most convincing proofs of his intelligence, and minute
knowledge of the past history, not of his own country alone, but of
India in general. He was remarkably well read; and at this and other
visits he afforded me much instruction. He had copies made for me of the
chief histories of his family, which are now deposited in the library of
the Royal Asiatic Society. He entered deeply into the events of his
personal history, and recounted many of the expedients he was obliged to
have recourse to in order to save his life, when, in consequence of the
murder of his Guru (not only his spiritual but his temporal guide,
counsellor, and friend), he relinquished the reins of power, and
acquiesced in their assumption by his son. The whole transaction is
still involved in mystery, which the Raja alone can unravel. We must
enter so far into the State secrets of the court as to disclose the
motive for such an act as the destruction of the brave Surthan, and
introduce to the reader another high priest of the Rajputs as a pendant
for the oracle of the Apollo of Nathdwara.

The parricidal murder of Raja Ajit has been the destruction of Marwar,
and even “unto the third and fourth generation” Providence would seem to
have visited the act with its vengeance. The crown, which in a few years
more would have been transmitted by nature’s law, was torn from the brow
of this brave prince, who has redeemed his lost inheritance from
Aurangzeb, by the unhallowed arm of his eldest son Abhai Singh;
instigated thereto by an imperial bribe of the viceroyalty of Gujarat.
His brother, Bakhta Singh, was made almost independent in Nagor by the
concession of Abhai and the sanad and titles of his sovereign; and the
contests between their issue have moistened the sands of Marwar with the
richest blood of her children. Such is the bane of feudal dominion—the
parent of the noblest deeds and the deepest crimes.

=Deonāthji, the High Priest.=—Raja Man, accordingly, came to the throne
with all the advantages and [714] disadvantages of such a state of
things; and he was actually defending his existence in Jalor against his
cousin and sovereign, when an unexpected event released him from his
perils, and placed him on the throne. Bhim Singh had destroyed almost
every branch of the blood-royal, which might have served as a nucleus
for those intestine wars which desolated the country, and young Man, the
sole intervening obstacle to the full accomplishment of his wishes, was
reduced to the last extremity, and on the eve of surrendering himself
and Jalor to this merciless tyrant, when he was relieved from his
perilous situation. He attributed his escape to the intercession of the
high priest of Marwar, the spiritual leader of the Rathors. This
hierarch bore the title of divinity, or Nathji: his praenomen of Deo or
Deva was almost a repetition of his title; and both together, Deonath,
cannot be better rendered than by ‘Lord God.’ Whether the intercession
of this exalted personage was purely of a moral nature, as asserted, or
whether Raja Bhim was removed from this vain world to the heaven of
Indra by means less miraculous than prayer is a question on which
various opinions are entertained; but all agree that nothing could have
been better timed for young Man, the sole victim required to fill up the
measure of Bhim’s sanguinary policy. When suicide was the sole
alternative to avoid surrender to the fangs of this Herod of the Desert,
the high priest, assuming the mantle of prophecy, pronounced that no
capitulation was inscribed in the book of fate—whose page revealed
brighter days for young Man. Such prophets are dangerous about the
persons of princes, who seldom fail to find the means to prevent their
oracles from being demented. A dose of poison, it is said, was deemed a
necessary adjunct to render efficacious the prayers of the pontiff; and
they conjointly extricated the young prince from a fate which was deemed
inevitable, and placed him on the regal cushion of Marwar. The gratitude
of Raja Man had no limits—no honours, no grants were sufficient to mark
his sense of obligation. The royal mantle was hallowed by the tread of
this sainted being; and the throne itself was exalted when Deonath
condescended to share it with his master, who, while this proud priest
muttered forth his mysterious benedictions, with folded hands stood
before him to receive the consecrated garland. Lands in every district
were conferred upon the Nath, until his estates, or rather those of the
church of which he was the head, far exceeded in extent those of the
proudest nobles of the land, his income [715] amounting to a tenth of
the revenues of the State. During the few years he held the keys of his
master’s conscience, which were conveniently employed to unlock the
treasury, he erected no less than eighty-four mandirs, or places of
worship, with monasteries adjoining them, for his well-fed lazy chelas
or disciples, who lived at free quarters on the labour of the
industrious. Deonath was a striking example of the identity of human
nature, under whatever garb and in whatever clime; whether under the
cowl or the coronet, in the cold clime of Europe, or in the deserts of
India. This Wolsey of Marudes exercised his hourly-increasing power to
the disgust and alienation of all but his infatuated prince. He leagued
with the nominal minister, Induraj, and together they governed the
prince and country. Such characters, when exceeding the sphere of their
duties, expose religion to contempt. The degradation which the haughty
grandees of Marwar experienced made murder in their eyes a venial
offence, provoked as they were by the humiliations they underwent
through the influence of this arrogant priest, whose character may be
given in the language of Gibbon, merely substituting Deonath of Marwar
for Paul of Samosata: “His ecclesiastical jurisdiction was venal and
rapacious; he extorted frequent contributions from the most opulent of
the faithful, and converted to his own use a considerable part of the
public revenue. His council chamber and his throne, the splendour with
which he appeared in public, the suppliant crowd who solicited his
attention, and the perpetual hurry of business in which he was involved,
were circumstances much better suited to the state of a civil magistrate
than to the humility of a primitive bishop.”[4.27.8] But his “full-blown
pride” at length burst under him. Sequestrations from the estates of the
chief barons of Maru became frequent in order to swell his rent-roll for
the support of his establishments; his retinue on ordinary occasions
surpassed that of any chieftain, and not unfrequently he was attended by
the whole insignia of the State—the prince attending on such ceremonies.
On these occasions the proud Rajput felt that he folded his hands, not
to his sovereign, but to his sovereign’s sovereign; to a vindictive and
vainglorious priest, who, amidst the mummeries and artifices of
religious rites, gratified an inordinate vanity, while he mortified
their pride and diminished their revenues. The hatred of such men is
soon followed by their vengeance; and though they would not dye their
own daggers in his blood, they soon found agents in a race who know not
mercy, the myrmidons of [716] that villain Amir Khan, under whose steel,
and within the precincts of the palace, Deonath fell a victim. It has
been surmised that Raja Man was privy to the murder; that if he did not
command or even sanction it, he used no means to prevent it. There are
but two in this life who can reveal this mystery—the Raja, and the
_bourreau en chéf_ of Rajasthan, the aforesaid Amir Khan.

The murder of the high priest was but a prolongation of the drama, in
which we have already represented the treacherous destruction of the
chieftain of Pokaran and his kindred; and the immolation of Krishna
Kunwari, the Helen of Rajasthan. The attack on the gallant Surthan, who
conducted us from Jhalamand to the capital, sprung from the seed which
was planted so many years back; nor was he the last sacrifice: victim
after victim followed in quick succession until the Caligula of the
Desert, who could “smile and stab,” had either slain or exiled all the
first chieftains of his State. It would be a tedious tale to unravel all
these intrigues; yet some of them must be told, in order to account for
the ferocity of this man, now a subordinate ally of the British
Government in the East.

=Accession of Rāja Mān Singh.=—It was in A.D. 1804[4.27.9] that Raja Man
exchanged the defence of Jalor for the throne of Jodhpur. His
predecessor, Raja Bhim, left a widow pregnant; she concealed the
circumstance, and when delivered, contrived to convey the child in a
basket to Sawai Singh of Pokaran. During two years he kept the secret:
he at length convened the Marwar chieftains, with whose concurrence he
communicated it to Raja Man, demanding the cession of Nagor and its
dependencies as a domain for this infant, named Dhonkal Singh, the
heir-apparent of Marwar. The Raja promised compliance if the mother
confirmed the truth of the statement. Whether her personal fears
overcame her maternal affection, or the whole was an imposture of
Pokaran, she disclaimed the child. The chiefs, though not satisfied,
were compelled to appear contented with the result of this appeal; and
for some years the matter seemed at rest. But this calm was only the
presage of a storm, which shook to its base the political edifice of
Marwar, and let loose upon her cities a torrent of predatory foes; it
dethroned her prince, and, what the planner could not have contemplated,
involved his own destruction. The effects of this treachery have for
ever destroyed all confidence between the chief and the entire feudal
interest. The Pokaran chief, after failing to establish the [717] claims
of Dhonkal Singh as pretender to the throne, sent him for safety to the
Shaikhawat chief of Khetri,[4.27.10] one of the independent nobles of
the Jaipur family. Here he left him till an opportunity again arrived to
bring him upon the scene, which was afforded by the contest between the
princes of Marwar and Jaipur for the hand of the Rana’s daughter. This
rivalry, the effects of which are already related, and which brought
into conflict all the northern powers of India, was, in fact, only the
under-plot of the deep-laid policy of Sawai. When once the gauntlet was
thrown down for the hand of this fair lady, the Pokaran chief stepped in
with the pretended son of Raja Bhim, whose cause, from the unpopularity
of Raja Man, soon brought to his standard almost all the feudality of
Marwar. The measures which followed, and the catastrophe, the death of
Krishna Kunwari, have already been related.[4.27.11] The assassination
of the chief of Pokaran was simultaneous with these events; and it was
shortly after that the murder of the pontiff Deonath took place.

=Insanity of Rāja Mān Singh.=—After being relieved from all external
foes by his own strength of mind, and the aid of a few friends whom no
reverse could estrange from him, Raja Man either fell, or affected to
fall, into a state of mental despondency bordering on insanity.
Suspicious of every one, he would only eat from the hands of his wife,
who prepared his food herself; he became sullen and morose; he neglected
public business; and finally withdrew entirely from the world. The
attempt to rouse him from this real or pretended stupor was fruitless;
he did nothing but lament the death of Deonath, and pour forth prayers
to the deity. In this state, he was easily induced to associate his son
in the government, and he bestowed upon him with his own hand the _tika_
of command. Chhattar Singh was the name of the prince, who was still in
his minority; thoughtless, and of dissolute habits, he soon gave himself
up to the guidance of a junta of the chiefs, who proclaimed Akhai Chand,
of the mercantile caste, the chief civil minister of the State.

=British Control of Mārwār. Restoration and Policy of Rāja Mān
Singh.=—Such was the condition of Marwar from A.D. 1809 to 1817. At this
period the progress of events made the English arbiters of the destinies
of Rajasthan. The regent of Marwar sent an ambassador to treat; but
before the treaties were ratified and exchanged the young regent was
dead. Various causes were assigned [718] for his death: by some his
dissolute habits, occasioning premature decay; by others, with more
probability, the dagger of an indignant Rajput, the honour of whose
daughter he had clandestinely attempted. Upon this event, and the change
of political circumstances, the chiefs had no alternative but to turn to
the secluded prince. If but one half is true that I have heard, and from
authority of high credit, the occupations of the years which the Raja
passed between the murder of the priest and the death of his son might
be deemed an atonement for the deepest crimes. When messengers announced
the fate of his son, and that State necessity recalled him to the helm
of affairs, he appeared unable to comprehend them. He had so long acted
the maniac that he had nearly become one: his beard was never touched,
and his hair, clotted and foul, gave him an expression of idiocy; yet
throughout these long years he was resolutely tenacious of life. The
party who governed the son and the State had their own menials to wait
upon him, and many were the attempts to poison him by their means; in
avoiding which his simulated madness was so perfect that they deemed he
had “a charmed life.” But he had one faithful servant, who throughout
this dreadful trial never forsook him, and who carried him food in his
turban to replace that which was suspected. When by degrees he was led
to understand the emergency, and the necessity of leaving his prison, he
persevered in his apparent indifference to everything earthly, until he
gathered information and the means for a terrible reaction. The treaty
with the English put the ball at his foot: he very soon perceived that
he might command a force to put down disorder—such was even volunteered;
but with admirable penetration he trusted to the impression of this
knowledge amongst his chiefs, as a sufficient auxiliary. By
disseminating it, he paralysed that spirit which maintained rights in
the soil of Marwar nearly concurrent with those of the sovereign. No
higher compliment could be paid to British ascendancy than the
sentiments of Raja Man and his nobles; and no better illustration is on
record of the opinion of our power than that its name alone served the
Raja’s purpose in subjugating men, who, scarcely knowing fear, yet
reposing partly on our justice, though mainly on the utter hopelessness
of resisting us, were deprived of all moral courage.

In refusing the aid of a mere physical force, the Raja availed himself
of another weapon; for by this artifice he threw the chiefs off their
guard, who confided in his [719] assumed desire to forget the past.
Intrigues for power and patronage seemed to strengthen this confidence;
and Salim Singh of Pokaran, the military Maire du palais or Bhanjgarh,
and Akhai Chand, retained as civil prime minister, were opposed by
Jodhraj Singwi, who headed the aspirants to supplant them. The Raja
complained of their interested squabbles, but neither party dreamed that
they were fostered by him to cloak his deep-laid schemes. Akhai Chand
had been minister throughout the son’s administration; the political and
pecuniary transactions of the State were known chiefly to him; to cut
him off would have been poor revenge, and Raja Man was determined not
only to extract from him all the knowledge of State matters transacted
during his seclusion, but to make himself master of his coffers, and
neither would have been attained by simple murder. Akhai Chand was not
blind to the dangers of his position; he dreaded the _appui_ his
sovereign derived from the English, and laboured to inspire the Raja
with distrust of their motives. It suited his master’s views to flatter
this opinion; and the minister and his adherents were lulled into a
fatal security.

=Maladministration of Rāja Mān Singh.=—Such were the schemes concocting
when I visited this court, which were revealed by succeeding events. At
this time the Raja appeared in a state of mental depression, involved in
difficulties, cautious, fearful of a false step, and surrounded by the
satellites of the miscreant Akhai Chand, who, if he could no longer
incarcerate his person, endeavoured to seal up the mind of his prince
from all communication with those who might stimulate him to exertion.
But all his arts only served to entangle him in the web then weaving for
his life. The Raja first made him the means of destroying the most
powerful of his chieftains, Surthan being the primary sacrifice to his
sanguinary proscription; many others followed, until the best of the
feudal chieftains sought refuge from his fury in exile, and found the
saran (sanctuary) they sought in the surrounding States, the majority in
Mewar. The day of vengeance at length arrived, and the minister and his
partisans were transferred from their position at the helm of the State
to a dungeon. Deceived with hopes of life, and compelled by the
application of some summary methods of torture, Akhai Chand gave in a
schedule of forty lakhs of property, of which the Raja realized a large
portion, and then dismissed him to the other world. Nagoji, the
kiladar,[4.27.12] and Mulji Dandal, both favourites and advisers of the
Raja’s [720] late son, returned on the strength of a general amnesty,
and forgot they had been traitors. The wealth which prodigality had
heaped upon them, consisting of many of the crown jewels, being
recovered, their worldly accounts were settled by a cup of poison, and
their bodies thrown over the battlements. Success, and the taste of
blood, whetted rather than appeased the appetite of Raja Man. He was
well seconded by the new minister, Fateh Raj, the deadly opponent of
Akhai Chand, and all the clan of Champawats, whom he deemed the authors
of the murder of his brother Induraj, slain at the same time with
Deonath. Each day announced a numerous list of victims, either devoted
to death, or imprisoned and stripped of their wealth. The enormous sum
of a crore of rupees has been stated as the amount of the confiscations.

All these atrocities occurred within six months after my visit to this
court, and about eighteen from the time it was received into protective
alliance with the British Government. The anomalous condition of all our
connexions with the Rajput States has already been described: and if
illustration of those remarks be required, it is here in awful
characters. We had tied up our own hands: “internal interference” had
been renounced, and the sequestration of every merchant’s property, who
was connected with the Mehta faction, and the exile of the nobles, had
no limit but the will of a bloodthirsty and vindictive tyrant. The
objects of his persecution made known everywhere the unparalleled
hardships of their case, and asserted that nothing but respect for the
British Government prevented their doing themselves justice. In no part
of the past history of this State could such proscription of the
majority of the kin and clan of the prince have taken place. The dread
of our intervention, as an umpire favourable to their chief, deprived
them of hope; they knew that if we were exasperated there was no saran
to protect them. They had been more than twelve months in this
afflicting condition when I left the country; nor have I heard that
anything has been done to relieve them, or to adjust these intestine
broils. It is abandoning them to that spirit of revenge which is a
powerful ingredient in their nature, and held to be justifiable by any
means when no other hope is left them. In all human probability, Raja
Man will end his days by the same expedient which secured him from the
fury of his predecessor.[4.27.13]

=Interview with Rāja Mān Singh.=—Having lifted the mantle which veiled
the future, my reader must forget all that [721] has been said to the
disadvantage of Raja Man, and see only the dignified, the courteous, and
the well-instructed gentleman and prince. I cannot think that the Raja
had coolly formed to himself the plan of the sanguinary measures he
subsequently pursued, and which it would require a much more extended
narrative to describe. We discoursed freely on past history, in which he
was well read, as also in Persian, and his own native dialects. He
presented me with no less than six metrical chronicles of his house; of
two, each containing seven thousand stanzas, I made a rough translation.
In return, I had transcribed and sent to him Ferishta’s great _History
of the Mahomedan Power in India_, and _Khulasatu-t-tawarikh_,[4.27.14] a
valuable epitome of the history of Hindustan. I little imagined that I
should then have to exhibit him otherwise than his demeanour and
instructive discourse made him appear to me. In our graver conversation
I was amused with a discourse on the rules of government, and
instructions for the guidance of ambassadors, which my better
acquaintance with Chand discovered to be derived from that writer. He
carried me, accompanied by a single domestic, to various apartments in
the palace, whence he directed my view across the vast plains of the
desert, whose monarch I envied not. The low hills in the vicinity alone
broke the continuity of this arid region, in which a few isolated nim
trees were thinly scattered, to remind one of the absence of all that is
grand in vegetation. After a visit of several hours, I descended to my
tent, and found my friends, Captain Waugh and Major Gough, just returned
from a successful chase of an antelope, which, with the aid of some
Rohilla greyhounds, they had run down. I attributed their success to the
heavy sands, on which I have witnessed many pulled down by dogs of
little speed; but the secret was revealed on this animal being sent to
the _cuisinier_. On depriving him of his hide, between it and the flesh
the whole carcase was covered with a large, inert, amorphous white
maggot. The flesh was buried in the sands, and no venison appeared again
on my table while in India.[4.27.15]

=Mandor. Rāthor Cenotaphs.=—_November 8._—I set out early this morning
to ramble amidst the ruins of the ancient capital, Mandor, an important
link in the chain of archaeological research, before the _panchranga_,
or ‘five-coloured banner’ of Maru was prostrated to the crescent.
Attended by an escort provided by the Raja, I left the perambulator
behind; but as the journey occupied an hour and a quarter, and at a very
slow pace, the distance must be under five miles. I proceeded through
the Sojat gate, to [722] gain the road leading to Nagor; shortly after
which I passed the Maha Mandir, or ‘Grand Minster,’ the funds for the
erection of which were provided by Raja Man on his escape from ruin at
Jalor. I skirted the range, gradually decreasing in height for three
miles, in a N.N.E. direction. We then altered our course to N.N.W., and
entered the gorge of the mountains which envelop all that is hallowed of
the relics of the princes of this house. The pass is narrow; the cliffs
are almost perpendicular, in which are numerous caves, the abodes of
ascetics. The remains of fortifications thrown across, to bar the
entrance of the foe to the ancient capital of the Pariharas, are still
visible: a small stream of pure and sweet water issues from this
opening, and had a watercourse under an archway. After proceeding a
little farther, the interval widened, and passing through the village,
which does not exceed two hundred houses, our attention was attracted by
a line of lofty temples, rising in graduated succession. These proud
monuments proved to be the cenotaphs of the Rathors, erected on the
spots where the funeral pyre consumed the crowned heads of Maru, who
seldom burnt alone, but were accompanied by all that made life agreeable
or poisoned its enjoyment. The small brook already mentioned flows past
the southern extremity of the chief line of monuments, which extend from
south to north. At the former point stands that of Rao Maldeo, the
gallant opponent of Sher Shah, the brave usurper of the throne of the
Moguls. The farther point terminates with that of Maharaja Ajit Singh;
while the princes in regular succession, namely, Sur Singh, Udai Singh,
Gaj Singh, and Jaswant Singh, fill up the interval.

These dumb recorders of a nation’s history attest the epochs of Marwar’s
glory, which commenced with Maldeo, and ended with the sons of Ajit. The
temple-monument of Maldeo, which yet throws into shade the still more
simple shrines of Chonda, and Jodha, contrasted with the magnificent
mausoleum of Raja Ajit, reads us a lesson on the advancement of
luxurious pomp in this desert State. The progression is uniform, both in
magnitude and elegance, from Maldeo’s who opposed on equal terms the
Afghan king (whose memorable words, “I had nearly lost the throne of
India for a handful of barley,”[4.27.16] mark at once the gallantry and
the poverty of those whom he encountered), to the last great prince
Ajit. Even that of Raja Gaj is plain, compared to his successor’s. These
monuments are all erected of a very close-grained freestone, of a dark
brown or red [723] tint, with sufficient hardness to allow the sculptor
to indulge his fancy. The style of architecture, or rather the
composition, is mixed, partaking both of the Saivite and the Buddhist;
but the details are decidedly Jain, more especially the columns, which
are of the same model as those in Kumbhalmer. I speak more especially of
those of Rajas Jaswant and Ajit, drawings of which, on a large scale,
executed by the Raja’s chief architect, I brought to Europe; but which
it would be too expensive to have engraved. They are raised on immense
terraces, faced with large blocks of well-polished freestone. That of
Jaswant is somewhat ponderous and massive; but Ajit’s rises with great
elegance and perfect symmetry of proportion.

On ascending the terrace you enter through a lofty vaulted porch
supported by handsome columns to the sanctum, which is a pyramidal
temple, four stories in height, in the Saivite style, crowned by the
_sikhar_ and _kalas_, elsewhere described. The sculptural ornaments are
worthy of admiration, both for their design and effect; and the numerous
columns on the basement, and different stages of ascent, give an air of
so much majesty that one might deem these monuments more fitting
sepulture for the Egyptian Cheops than a shrine—over what? not even the
ashes of the desert king, which were consigned in an urn to the bosom of
the Ganges. If the foundations of these necrological monuments have been
equally attended to with the superstructure, they bid fair to convey to
remote posterity the recollection of as conspicuous a knot of princely
characters as ever followed each other in the annals of any age or
country. Let us place them in juxtaposition with the worthies of Mewar
and the illustrious scions of Timur, and challenge the thrones of Europe
to exhibit such a contemporaneous display of warriors, statesmen, or

        Mewar.               Marwar.           Delhi.

    Rana Sanga         Rao Maldeo              Babur and Sher Shah.
    │          │       Rao Sur Singh           Humayun.
    Rana Partap        Raja Udai Singh         Akbar.

    Rana Amra I.    ┐  Raja Gaj Singh       ┌  Jahangir and
    Rana Karan      ┘                       └  Shah Jahan.

    Rana Raj           Raja Jaswant Singh      Aurangzeb.
                                            ┌  All the competitors
    Rana Jai Singh  ┐  Raja Ajit Singh      ┤  for the throne after
    Rana Amra II.   ┘                       └  Farrukhsiyar [724].

From Maldeo to Udai _le gros_ the first _Raja_ (hitherto _Raos_) of
Marwar, and the friend of Akbar, to Jaswant, the implacable foe of
Aurangzeb, and Ajit, who redeemed his country from oppression, all were
valiant men and patriotic princes.

“Where were the lions’ cubs,” I asked of my conductor, “the brave sons
of Ajit, who erected this monument to his manes, and who added provinces
to his dominions?” He pointed to two sheds, where the _kriya
karma_[4.27.17] was performed; there was

                        No funeral urn
                        To mark their obsequies:

but these lowly sheds told, in more forcible, more emphatic language,
the cause of this abrupt transition from grandeur to humility than pen
ever wrote; and furnished the moral epilogue to the eventful drama of
the lives of these kings of the desert. Abhai Singh’s parricidal hand
bereft his father of life; yet though his career was one splendid tissue
of success and honour, leaving his dominions more than doubled, the
contentions of his issue with that of his brother Bakhta Singh, alike
accessory, it is said, to the crime, have entailed endless misery upon
Marwar, and left them not the power, if they had the inclination, to
house his ashes. In the same line with the parricide and his brave
brother is the humble monument of the great Bijai Singh, whose life till
towards its close was a continued tide of action. I could not avoid an
exclamation of surprise: “Shame to the country,” I said, “that has
neglected to enshrine the ashes of a name equal to the proudest!” His
three sons, amongst them Zalim Singh, with the sketch of whom this
narrative opened, have their shrines close to his; and but a few yards
removed are those of Raja Bhim, and his elder brother Guman (who died in
his minority), the father of the reigning prince, Raja Man. The last,
which closed the line, pertained to Chhattar Singh, who, in all
probability, was saved by death from the murder of his parent. I passed
it in disgust, asking who had been so foolish as to entomb his ashes
better than those of some of the worthies of his race? I found that it
was the act of maternal fondness.

=Ancestor Worship. Sati.=—The Amavas (the Ides) and the Sankrantis (when
the sun enters a new sign of the Zodiac) of every month are sacred to
the Pitrideva, on which days it is incumbent on the reigning prince to
“give water” to his ancestors. But the ignorance of my conductor
deprived me of much information which I anticipated [725]; and had I not
been pretty well read in the chronicles of the Rathors, I should have
little enjoyed this visit to a “nation’s dust.” They related one fact,
which was sufficient to inspire horror. No less than sixty-four females
accompanied the shade of Ajit to the mansion of the sun. But this is
twenty short of the number who became Satis when Raja Budh Singh of
Bundi was drowned! The monuments of this noble family of the Haras are
far more explicit than those of the Rathors, for every such Sati is
sculptured on a small altar in the centre of the cenotaph: which speaks
in distinct language the all-powerful motive, vanity, the principal
incentive to these tremendous sacrifices. Budh Singh was a contemporary
of Ajit, and one of the most intrepid generals of Aurangzeb; the period
elapsed is about one hundred and twenty years. Mark the difference! When
his descendant, my valued friend, the Rao Raja Bishan Singh, died in
1821, his last commands were that none should give such a proof of their
affection. He made me guardian of his infant heir;—in a few days I was
at Bundi, and his commands were religiously obeyed.

In this account are enumerated the monumental relics below the fort.
Upon the mountain, and beyond the walls of the fortress of Mandor, are
the _dewals_ of Rao Ranmall, Rao Ganga, and Chonda, who conquered Mandor
from the Parihars. Within a hundred yards of this trio of worthies of
this house is a spot set apart for the queens who die natural deaths.
But this is anticipating; let me in form conduct my readers step by step
from the cemetery of the Rathors to the Cyclopean city of the Parihars.

Whoever has seen Cortona, Volterra, or others of the ancient Tuscan
cities can form a correct idea of the walls of Mandor, which are
precisely of the same ponderous character. It is singular that the
ancient races of India, as well as of Europe (and whose name of Pali is
the synonym of Galati or Keltoi) should, in equal ignorance of the
mechanical arts, have piled up these stupendous monuments, which might
well induce their posterity to imagine “there were giants in those
days.” This western region, in which I include nearly all Rajputana and
Saurashtra, has been the peculiar abode of these “pastor kings,” who
have left their names, their monuments, their religion and sacred
character as the best records of their supremacy. The Rajpali, or ‘Royal
Pastors,’ are enumerated as one of the thirty-six royal races of ancient
days: the city of Palitana, ‘the abode of the Pali,’ in Saurashtra
(built [726] at the foot of Mount Satrunjaya, sacred to Buddha), and
Pali in Godwar, are at once evidences of their political consequence and
the religion they brought with them; while the different nail-headed
characters are claimed by their descendants, the sectarian Jains of the
present day.[4.27.18] There is scarcely an ancient city in Rajputana
whence I have not obtained copies of inscriptions from columns and
rocks, or medals, gold, silver, and copper, bearing this antique
character. All are memorials of these races, likewise termed Takshak,
the Scythic conquerors of India, ancestors of many of the Rajputs, whose
history the antiquary will one day become better acquainted with. The
Parihara, it will be recollected, is one of the four Agnikulas: races
who obtained a footing in India posterior to the Suryas and Indus. I
omitted, however, to mention, in the sketch of the Pariharas, that they
claim Kashmir as the country whence they migrated into India: the period
is not assigned, but it was when the schismatic wars between the
Saivites and Buddhists were carrying on; and it would appear that the
former found proselytes and supporters in many of these Agnikulas. But
of the numerical extent of the followers of this faith we have this
powerful evidence, namely, that three-fourths of the mercantile classes
of these regions are the descendants of the martial conquerors of India,
and that seven out of the ten and a half niyats or tribes, with their
innumerable branches, still profess the Jain faith, which, beyond
controversy, was for ages paramount in this country.

=The Walls of Mandor.=—Let us now ascend the paved causeway to this
gigantic ruin, and leave the description of the serpentine Nagda, which
I threaded to its source in the glen of Panchkunda, till our return.
Half-way up the ascent is a noble _baoli_, or ‘reservoir,’ excavated
from the solid rock, with a facing of cut stone and a noble flight of
steps: on which, however, two enormous _gulars_[4.27.19] or wild
fig-trees have taken root, and threaten it with premature destruction.
This memorial bears the name of Nahar Rao, the last of the
Parihars.[4.27.20] As I looked up to the stupendous walls,

         Where time hath leant his hand, but broke his scythe,

I felt the full force of the sentiment of our heart-stricken Byron:

                                       there is a power
             And magic in the ruined battlement,
             For which the palace of the present hour
         Must yield its pomp, and wait till ages are its dower.

Ages have rolled away since these were raised, and ages will yet roll
on, and find [727] them immovable, unchanged. The immense blocks are
piled upon, and closely fitted to, each other without any cement, the
characteristic of all the Etruscan cities termed Cyclopean. We might
indeed smuggle a section of Mandor into the pages of Micali,[4.27.21]
amongst those of Todi or Volterra, without fear of detection. The walls,
following the direction of the crest of the ridge, are irregular; and
having been constructed long before artillery was thought of, the
Parihar or Pali engineer was satisfied with placing the palace on the
most commanding eminence, about the centre of the fortress. The bastions
or towers are singularly massive, and like all the most antique, their
form is square. Having both fever and ague upon me, I was incapable of
tracing the direction of the walls, so as to form any correct judgement
of the space they enclose; but satisfied with gaining the summit, I
surveyed the ruin from the site of the palace of the Parihars. The
remains, though scanty, are yet visible; but the materials have been
used in the construction of the new capital Jodhpur, and in the
cenotaphs described. A small range of the domestic temples of the
palace, and some of the apartments, are yet distinctly to be traced; the
sculptured ornaments of their portals prove them to have been the work
of a Takshak or Buddhist architect. Symbolical figures are frequently
seen carved on the large blocks of the walls, though probably intended
merely as guides to the mason. These were chiefly Buddhist or Jain: as
the quatre-feuille, the cross; though the mystic triangle, and triangle
within a triangle ✡[4.27.22] (a sign of the Saivites, only, I believe),
was also to be seen. The chief memorials of the Parihara are a gateway
and magnificent Toran, or triumphal arch, placed towards the south-east
angle of the castle. It is one mass of sculpture; but the pencil was
wanting, and I had not leisure even to bring away a rude resemblance of
this memento of some victory of the ancient lords of Mandor.

=Thāna Pir.=—A little distance to the northward of my position is the
Than or ‘station’ of a Muhammadan saint, a disciple of the celebrated
Khwaja Kutab, whose shrine at Ajmer is celebrated. This of Thana
Pir,[4.27.23] as they call him, was a place of great resort to the
unsanctified Kafirs, the mercenary Sindis and Afghans, who long prowled
about these regions in quest of [728] prey, or plunder, or both. Nearly
in the same direction, beyond the walls, are the cenotaphs of the early
Rathors and the Satis already mentioned; but tradition’s voice is mute
as to the spot which contains the ashes of the Parihars. To the east and
north-east, nature has formed at once a barrier to this antique castle,
and a place of recreation for its inhabitants; a lengthened chasm in the
whole face, appearing like a dark line, were it not for the superb
foliage of gular, mango, and the sacred bar and pipal, which rise above
the cleft, planted about the fountain and perpendicular cliffs of the
Nagda, and which must have proved a luxurious retreat to the princes of
Mandor from the reverberation of the sun’s rays on the rock-built
palace; for there is but a scanty brushwood scattered over the surface,
which is otherwise destitute of all vegetation.

Let us now descend by the same causeway to the glen of Panchkunda, where
there is much to gratify both the lover of the picturesque and the
architectural antiquary. At the foot of the causeway, terminated by a
reservoir of good water, are two gateways, one conducting to the gardens
and their palaces erected by the Rathors; the other, to the statues of
the Paladins of the desert. Leaving both for a moment, I pursued the
‘serpentine’ rivulet to its fountain, where

              Couched among fallen columns, in the shade
              Of ruined walls that had survived the names
              Of those who reared them,

I reposed in meditative indolence, overwhelmed with the recollections
such scenes inspire. In a recess or cave is a rude altar sanctified by
the name of Nahar Rao, the famed king of Mandor, who met in equal combat
the chivalrous Chauhan in the pass of the Aravalli.[4.27.24] A Nai, or
barber, performs worship to the manes of this illustrious Rajput, in
whose praise Chand is most eloquent. Whence the choice of a barber as a
priest I know not; but as he has the universal care of the material
portion of the Rajput, being always chosen as the cook, so there may be
reasons for his having had an interest in the immaterial part in olden
days, the tradition of which may have been lost. There is a piece of
sculpture containing nine figures, said to represent Ravana, who came
from “th’utmost isle Taprobane,”[4.27.25] to marry the daughter of the
sovereign of Mandor. There was a lengthened legend to account for the
name of Nagda, or, ‘serpentine,’ being applied to the [729] rivulet, but
it is too long to relate. We must therefore quit the fountain, where the
gallant Prithiraj and his fair bride, the cause of strife between the
Chauhans and Pariharas, may have reposed, and visit the most remarkable
relic within the precincts of this singular place.


  CHĀMUNDA.                  KANKĀLI.
  Rock Sculptures at Mandor.
  _To face page 842._

=Images of Heroes.=—A short distance from the foot of the causeway, an
archway opens into an enclosed court or area, in the retired part of
which, and touching the mountain, is an extensive saloon; the roof is
supported by a triple row of columns, of that light form peculiar to the
Jains. Here are displayed, in all “the pomp and circumstance of war,”
the statues of the knights-errant of the desert, armed cap-à-pie,
bestriding steeds whose names are deathless as their riders’, all in the
costume of the times in which they lived. They are cut out of the rock,
but entirely detached from it, and larger than life. Though more
conspicuous for strength than symmetry, the grim visages of these
worthies, apparently frowning defiance, each attended by his pandu or
squire, have a singularly pleasing effect. Each chieftain is armed with
lance, sword, and buckler, with quiver and arrows, and poniard in his
girdle. All are painted; but whether in the colours they were attached
to, or according to the fancy of the architect, I know not. Before,
however, entering this saloon, we pass a huge statue of Ganesa, placed
as the guardian of the portal, having on each side the two Bhairavas,
sons of the god of war. Then appears the statue of Chamunda (the goddess
of destruction), and that of the terrific mother, Kankali, treading on
the black demon Bhainsasur, in whose flank her tiger-courser has buried
his bloodthirsty tongue: in each of her eight arms she holds a weapon of
destruction. The black Bhairon (son of Time), with a sable flag, bearing
argent a horse courant, marshals the way through the field of blood to
his mother. Between her and the heroes whose lives passed “in devotion
to the sword,” is a statue of the Nathji, or ‘spiritual guide’ of the
Rathors: in one hand he holds his _mala_ or ‘chaplet’; in the other his
_chhari_ or ‘patriarchal rod,’ for the guidance of his flock.
Mallinath[4.27.26] heads the procession, mounted on a white charger,
with a lance over his shoulder, to which is attached a flag; his quiver
resting on his horse’s right flank, and his mistress, Padmavati, with a
platter of food welcoming him from the raid, and who accompanied him
when slain to Suryaloka, or ‘the mansion of the sun.’

Then follows Pabuji,[4.27.27] mounted on his famous charger ‘Black
Caesar’ (Kesar [730] Kali), whose exploits are the theme of the
itinerant bard and showman, who annually goes his round, exhibiting in
pictorial delineations, while he recites in rhyme, the deeds of this
warrior to the gossiping villagers of the desert.

Next comes Ramdeo[4.27.28] Rathor, a name famed in Marudesa, and in
whose honour altars are raised in every Rajput village in the country.

Then we have the brave Harbuji Sankhla,[4.27.29] to whom Jodha was
indebted for protection in his exile, and for the redemption of Mandor
when seized by the Rana of Chitor.

Guga,[4.27.30] the Chauhan, who with his forty-seven sons fell defending
the passage of the Sutlej on Mahmud’s invasion. Mehaji Mangalia brings
up the rear, a famous chieftain of the Guhilot race. It would be tedious
to relate any of the exploits of these worthies.

=Taintīs Kula Devata Ra Thān.=—Another saloon, of similar architecture
and still greater dimensions, adjoins that just described; it is termed
Taintis kula[4.27.31] devata ra than, or ‘abode of the (tutelary)
divinities of the thirty-three races’: in short, the Pantheon of the
Rajputs. The statues are of gypsum, or stone covered with that
substance; they are of large proportions. First, is the creator, Brahma;
then Surya, ‘the sun-god,’ with his seven-headed steed; then the
monkey-faced deity, Hanuman; Rama, and his beloved Sita; Kanhaiya, in
the woods of Vraj, surrounded by the Gopis; and a most grave figure of
Mahadeva, with a bull in his hand. These six, with the goddesses of life
and death, and of wisdom, constitute the eight chief divinities of the
Hindus; whose qualities and attributes, personified, form an assemblage
for which St. Peter’s and the Vatican to boot would be a confined


  MALLINĀTH.                 NĀTHJI.
  Rock Sculptures at Mandor.
  _To face page 844._

=Palace and Gardens.=—I now retired to the palace and gardens built by
Raja Ajit; of which, however superb, it is impossible for the pen to
give a definite idea. Suites of colonnaded halls, covered with sculpture
of easy and even graceful execution, some with screens of lattice-work
to secure the ladies from the public gaze, are on the lower range; while
staircases lead to smaller apartments intended for repose. The gardens,
though not extensive, as may be supposed, being confined within the
adamantine walls reared by the hand of Nature, must be delightfully cool
even in summer. Fountains, reservoirs, and water-courses, are everywhere
interspersed; and though [731] the thermometer in the open air was
86°,[4.27.32] the cold within doors (if this be not a solecism,
considering that there were no doors) was excessive. Some attention was
paid to its culture; besides many indigenous shrubs, it boasted of some
exotics. There was the golden champa,[4.27.33] whose aroma is
overpowering, and if laid upon the pillow will produce headache; the
pomegranate, at once “rich in flower and fruit”; the apple of Sita, or
Sitaphala, which, from similitude of taste, we call the custard-apple; a
delicious species of the plantain, whose broad, verdant, glossy leaf
alone inspires the mind with the sensation of coolness; the
mogra;[4.27.34] the chameli, or jessamine; and the queen of flowers, the
barahmasha,[4.27.35] literally the ‘twelve-month,’ because it flowers
throughout the year. It is a delightful spot, and I felt a peculiar
interest in it. Let the reader imagine the picture of a solitary
Englishman scribbling amidst the ruins of Mandor: in front a group of
venerable mango-trees; a little further an enormous isolated tamarind,
“planted by the hand of a juggler in the time of Nahar Rao, the last of
the Pariharas, before whom he exhibited this proof of legerdemain,” and,
as the legend goes, from whose branches the juggler met his
death:[4.27.36] amidst its boughs the long-armed tribe, the allies of
Rama, were skipping and chattering unmolested; while beneath, two Rathor
Rajputs were stretched in sleep, their horses dozing beside them,
standing as sedately as the statue of ‘Black Caesar’: a grenadier Sepoy
of my escort parading by a camp-basket, containing the provender of the
morning, completes the calm and quiet scene.

=An Atīt Hermit.=—On the summit of the rock, across the narrow valley,
several _guphas_, or caves, the abode of the hermit Atit,[4.27.37] were
in sight. How the brains of these ascetics can stand the heat and
confined air is a wonder, though, if they possessed any portion of that
which is supposed to be necessary to the guidance of the machine, they
would scarcely occupy such a position, nor consequently, the world’s
attention. _Mais tout est vanité_, a cause which has produced ten times
the number of saints that piety has, and ten times of ten these
troglodyte philosophers. Having walked out on the terrace or house-top
of the palace, to catch a sunbeam and scare away an ague which tormented
me, I discovered one of these animals coiled up on a heap of bat’s dung
[732], in a corner of an apartment of the palace. He was dreadfully
emaciated, and but for the rolling of a pair of eyes in a visage covered
with hair, there was nothing which betokened animation, much less
humanity. There was none but the bat to dispute his reign, or “the
spider which weaves its web in this palace of the Caesars.” I had no
inclination to disturb the process of ratiocination, or to ask to which
sect of philosophers belonged this Diogenes of Mandor, who might, if he
had utterance, have desired me to walk downstairs, and not intercept the
sunbeam for whose warmth we were competitors. The day was now nearly
departed, and it was time for me to return to my friends in camp. I
finished the evening by another visit to the knights of the desert; and
inscribing my name on the foot of ‘Black Caesar,’ bade adieu to the
ancient Mandor.


  Rock Sculptures at Mandor.
  _To face page 846._

_November 13._—The Raja having invited us to a dinner at the palace, we
sallied forth, belted and padded, to partake of Rajput hospitality. He
had made a request which will appear somewhat strange—that we would send
our cuisine, as the fare of the desert might prove unpalatable; but this
I had often seen done at Sindhia’s camp, when joints of mutton, fowls,
and fricassees would diversify the provender of the Mahratta. I
intimated that we had no apprehension that we should not do justice to
the gastronomy of Jodhpur; however, we sent our tables, and some claret
to drink long life to the king of Marudes. Having paid our respects to
our host, he dismissed us with the complimentary wish that appetite
might wait upon us, and, preceded by a host of gold and silver sticks,
we were ushered into a hall, where we found the table literally covered
with curries, pillaus, and ragouts of every kind, in which was not
forgotten the _haria mung Mandor ra_, the ‘green pulse of Mandor,’ the
favourite dish, next to _rabri_ or maize-porridge, of the simple Rathor.
Here, however, we saw displayed the dishes of both the Hindu and
Musulman, and nearly all were served in silver. The curries were
excellent, especially those of the vegetable tribes made of the pulses,
the kakris or cucumbers, and of a miniature melon not larger than an
egg, which grows spontaneously in these regions, and is transported by
kasids, or runners, as presents, for many hundreds of miles around. The
hall was an entire new building, and scarcely finished; it is erected on
the northern projection of the rock, where the escarpment is most
abrupt, and looks down upon the site of the batteries of the league of
1806. It is called the Man mahall [733], and, like the hall of audience,
its flat roof is supported by numerous massive hewn columns. The view
from it to the east is extensive, and we were told that the pinnacle of
Kumbhalmer, though eighty miles distant, has been seen, in those clear
days of the monsoon when the atmosphere is purified, after heavy
showers, from the sand which is held suspended. Great care was taken
that our meal should be uninterrupted, and that we should not be the
lions to an hour’s amusement of the court. There was but one trivial
occurrence to interrupt the decorum and attention of all present, and
that was so slight that we only knew it after the entertainment was
over. One of the menials of the court, either from ignorance or design,
was inclined to evince contumely or bad breeding. It will be considered
perhaps a singular circumstance that the Hindu should place before a
European the vessels from which he himself eats: but a little fire
purifies any metallic vessels from all such contamination; and on this
point the high-blooded Rajput is less scrupulous than the bigoted
Muhammadan, whom I have seen throw on the ground with contempt a cup
from which his officer had drunk water on a march. But of earthenware
there can be no purification. Now there was a handsome china bowl, for
which some old dowager fancier of such articles would have almost become
a supplicant, which having been filled with curds to the Sudra Farangis
could no longer be used by the prince, and it was brought by this
menial, perhaps with those words, to my native butler. Kali Khan, or, as
we familiarly called him, ‘the black lord,’ was of a temper not to be
trifled with; and as the domestic held it in his hand, saying, “Take it,
it is no longer of any use to us,” he gave it a tap with his hand which
sent it over the battlements, and coolly resuming his work, observed,
“That is the way in which all useless things should be served”; a hint
which, if reported to Raja Man, he seems to have acted on: for not many
months after, the minister, Akhai Chand, who dreaded lest European
influence should release his master from his faction and thraldom, was
treated by him in the same manner as the china bowl by Kali Khan.

=The Rāja visits the Author.=—_November 16._[4.27.38]—This day had been
fixed for the Raja’s visits to the envoy. In order to display his
grandeur, he sent his own suite of tents, which were erected near mine
[734]. They were very extensive, modelled in every way after those of
the Emperors of Delhi, and lined throughout with the royal colour,
crimson: but this is an innovation, as will appear from the formulas yet
preserved of his despatches, “from the foot of the throne, Jodhpur.” The
tent, in fact, was a palace in miniature, the whole surrounded by walls
of cloth, to keep at a distance the profane vulgar. The _gaddi_, or
royal cushion and canopy, was placed in the central apartment. At three,
all was noise and bustle in the castle and town; nakkaras were
reverberating, trumpets sounding the alarm, that the King of Maru was
about to visit the Farangi Wakil. As soon as the flags and pennant were
observed winding down ‘the hill of strife’ (Jodhagir), I mounted, and
with the gentlemen of my suite proceeded through the town to meet the
Raja. Having complimented him _en route_, we returned and received him
at the tents. The escort drawn up at the entrance of the tent presented
arms, the officers saluting; a mark of attention which gratified him, as
did the soldier-like appearance of the men. Hitherto, what he had seen
of regulars belonging to the native powers was not calculated to give
him a favourable impression of foot-soldiers, who are little esteemed by
the equestrian order of Rajputana. His visit continued about an hour,
when the shields were brought in, with jewels, brocades, shawls, and
other finery, in all nineteen trays, being two less than I presented to
the Rana of Udaipur. I likewise presented him with some arms of English
manufacture, a telescope, and smaller things much valued by the Rajputs.
After the final ceremony of perfumes, and itr-pan (which are admirable
hints when you wish to get rid of a tiresome guest, though not so in
this instance), the exterior wall was removed, and showed the
caparisoned elephant and horses, which were part of the khilat. At the
door of the tent we made our salaam, when the Raja gave me his hand,
which, by the by, was his first salutation on receiving me. It is an
ancient Rajput custom, and their bards continually allude to extending
the right hand—“dextra extenta.”


  Rock Sculptures at Mandor.
  _To face page 848._

=Taking Leave of the Rāja.=—_November 17._[4.27.39]—I went to take leave
of the Raja: I had a long and interesting conversation on this our last
interview. I left him in the full expectation that his energy of
character would surmount the difficulties by which he was surrounded,
though not without a struggle, and condign punishment to some of the
miscreants, the misleaders of his son, the assassins of his minister and
high priest, and consequently the authors of his humiliating and
protracted incarceration [735]. Whether the first gratification of
vengeance provoked his appetite, or whether the torrent of his rage,
once impelled into motion, became too impetuous to be checked, so that
his reason was actually disturbed by the sufferings he had undergone, it
is certain he grew a demoniac; nor could any one, who had conversed with
the bland, the gentlemanly, I might say gentle, Raja Man, have imagined
that he concealed under this exterior a heart so malignant as his
subsequent acts evinced. But the day of retribution must arrive; the men
who wrote that dignified remonstrance, which is given in another
place,[4.27.40] will not tamely bear their wrongs, and as they dare not
levy war against their prince, who reposes under British protection, the
dagger will doubtless find a way to reach him even in “the
thousand-columned hall” of Jodhpur.

Besides the usual gifts at parting, which are matter of etiquette, and
remain untouched by the individual, I accepted as a personal token of
his favour, a sword, dagger, and buckler, which had belonged to one of
his illustrious ancestors. The weight of the sword, which had often been
“the angel of death,” would convince any one that it must have been a
nervous arm which carried it through a day. With mutual good wishes, and
a request for a literary correspondence, which was commenced but soon
closed, I bade adieu to Raja Man and the capital of Marwar [736].


Footnote 4.27.1:

  [Of Jagat Singh of Jaipur and Amīr Khān.]

Footnote 4.27.2:

  [_Rahkala_ is properly the carriage on which a field-piece is mounted:
  then, a swivel-gun (Irvine, _Army of the Indian Moghuls_, 140).]

Footnote 4.27.3:

  [The population of the city in 1911 was 79,756.]

Footnote 4.27.4:

  _Amrit ra piyala._

Footnote 4.27.5:

  See p. 820.

Footnote 4.27.6:

  [‘The self-existent.’]

Footnote 4.27.7:

  [The Rāthor dynasty of Kanauj is a myth (Smith, _EHI_, 385, note 1).]

Footnote 4.27.8:

  [_Decline and Fall_, ed. W. Smith, ii. 262.]

Footnote 4.27.9:

  The date of his accession is the 5th of the month Margsir, S. 1860
  [A.D. 1803].

Footnote 4.27.10:

  [About 80 miles N. of Jaipur city.]

Footnote 4.27.11:

  Vol. I. page 535.

Footnote 4.27.12:

  Commandant of the fortress [_qil’adār_].

Footnote 4.27.13:

  [In 1839, in consequence of the misgovernment of Mān Singh, a force
  was sent by the British Government and Jodhpur was occupied. He
  entered into a treaty securing a cessation of his tyrannical acts. He
  died on September 5, 1843.]

Footnote 4.27.14:

  [An abstract of the _Khulāsatu-t-tawārīkh_ of Subhān Rāe is given in
  Elliot-Dowson viii. 5 ff.]

Footnote 4.27.15:

  [Professor E. B. Poulton kindly sends a note from Colonel J. W.
  Yerbury, who writes: “Although no record exists of the occurrence of
  Hypoderma in Hindustan, I think there is no doubt that the maggots are
  the larvae of either _H. diaua_ or _H. acteon_. They have been found
  in antelopes—_Antelope saiga_—and _dorcas_ brought to Italy from the

Footnote 4.27.16:

  [Sher Shāh, after his victory over Rāja Māldeo in A.D. 1544, said that
  “for a handful of millet (_juār_) he had almost lost the empire of
  India” (Ferishta ii. 123; Manucci i. 117). The author quotes this
  saying twice later on.]

Footnote 4.27.17:

  [Funeral rite.]

Footnote 4.27.18:

  [There is no evidence that the name Pālitāna is connected with a Pāli

Footnote 4.27.19:

  [_Ficus glomerata._]

Footnote 4.27.20:

  [Near the cave an inscription of Kakka Parihār, probably tenth century
  A.D., has recently been found (Erskine iii. A. 196).]

Footnote 4.27.21:

  _L’Italie avant la domination des Romains._

Footnote 4.27.22:

  Amongst ancient coins and medals, excavated from the ruins of Ujjain
  and other ancient cities, I possess a perfect series with all the
  symbolic emblems of the twenty-four Jain apostles. The compound
  equilateral triangle is amongst them: perhaps there were masons in
  those days amongst the Pali. It is hardly necessary to state that this
  Trinitarian symbol (the double triangle) occurs on our (so-called)
  Gothic edifices, _e.g._ the beautiful abbey gate of Bury St. Edmunds,
  Suffolk, erected about A.D. 1377. [See Count Goblet D’Alviella, _The
  Migration of Symbols_, 185 ff.]

Footnote 4.27.23:

  [Erskine (iii. A. 197) calls him Tanna Pīr; the shrine was built in
  the time of Mahārāja Mān Singh, and is held in high estimation.]

Footnote 4.27.24:

  See p. 793.

Footnote 4.27.25:

  _Tapu Ravana_, ‘the isle of Ravana,’ wherever that may be. [Taprobane
  represents the river Tāmraparni, ‘the copper-coloured leaf’ (_IGI_,
  xxiii. 215).]

Footnote 4.27.26:

  [Eldest son of Rāo Salkha, one of the early traditional ancestors of
  the Jodhpur chiefs, after whom the Mallāni district is named.]

Footnote 4.27.27:

  [A Rāthor chief, who first brought the camel into use, and was noted
  for protecting cows.]

Footnote 4.27.28:

  [A Tonwar or Tuar Rājput, of the family of Anangpāl of Delhi, now
  worshipped under the name of Rāmsāh Pīr.]

Footnote 4.27.29:

  [A Panwār Rājput, of Bengti, near Phalodi, where his cart is still

Footnote 4.27.30:

  [Gūgaji or Guggaji, already mentioned (p. 807 above), said to have
  been killed in battle with Fīroz Shāh of Delhi, at the end of the
  thirteenth century A.D.]

Footnote 4.27.31:

  I imagine the word _kula_, or ‘race,’ of which, as often remarked,
  there are not thirty-three but thirty-six, has given rise to the
  assertion respecting the thirty-three crore or millions of gods of
  Hindustan [more probably only an indefinite number].

Footnote 4.27.32:

  Thermometer 55°, 72°, 86°, 80° at daybreak, ten, two, and at sunset;
  on the 3rd November, the day of our arrival, the variations were 50°,
  72°, 80°, and 75° at those hours.

Footnote 4.27.33:

  [_Michelia champaka._]

Footnote 4.27.34:

  [The double jasmine, _Jasminum zambak_.]

Footnote 4.27.35:

  [Sir D. Prain, who has kindly investigated this flower, identifies it
  with a species of _Bauhinia_. He remarks that “_B. acuminata_, which
  differs from _B. purpurea_ and _B. variegata_, both in being a smaller
  plant and in beginning to flower when _B. variegata_ does, goes on
  flowering all through the rains, and still continues to flower when
  _B. purpurea_ is in blossom. It does not flower all the year round in
  Bengal, and I doubt if it does so in Rājputāna, though Balfour in his
  _Cyclopaedia_ suggests that it does so. My idea is that the term
  _bārah-māsha_ in Upper India should not be taken too literally, and
  that it is only a figurative way of saying that the particular
  _Bauhinia_ is in flower alongside of both the others when flowering
  seasons are separated by half the year.”]

Footnote 4.27.36:

  See the Autobiography of Jahangir, translated by that able Oriental
  scholar, Major Price [p. 96 f.], for the astonishing feats these
  jugglers perform in creating not only the tree but the fruit.

Footnote 4.27.37:

  [The Atīt is a mendicant follower of Siva, and the term is usually
  equivalent to Sannyāsi.]

Footnote 4.27.38:

  Thermometer 59°, 82°, 85°, 79°.

Footnote 4.27.39:

  Thermometer 59°, 73°, 89°, 82°; at six, ten, two, and sunset.

Footnote 4.27.40:

  See Vol. I. p. 228.


                               CHAPTER 28

=Nāndla.=—_November 19._—We broke ground for Nandla, distant six miles.
The first two miles from the capital was through deep sand; for the
remainder of the journey the red sandstone protruded, which gives some
relief to the footing of the traveller. About half-way we passed a small
sheet of water, called after the mother of the pretender, Dhonkal Singh,
the Shaikhawat Talao. This lady has constructed a dharmsala, or ‘hall
for travellers,’ on its bank, where she has erected a statue of Hanuman,
and a pillar to commemorate her own good works. Not a shrub of any
magnitude occurs, for even the stunted khair[4.28.1] is rare in this
plain of sand; which does not, however, appear unfavourable to the
moth,[4.28.2] a vetch on which they feed the cattle. Near the village we
crossed the Jogini, the same stream which we passed between Jhalamand
and the capital, and which, joined by the Nagda from Mandor, falls into
the Luni. The only supply of water for Nandla is procured from two wells
dug on the margin of the stream. The water is abundant, and only four
feet from the surface, but brackish. There are a hundred and twenty-five
houses in Nandla, which is in the fief of the chieftain of Ahor. A few
cenotaphs are on the banks of a tank, now dry. I went to look at them,
but they contained names “unknown to fame.”

=Bīsalpur.=—Bisalpur, the next place, is distant six estimated coss of
the country, and [737] thirteen miles one furlong by the perambulator:
heavy sand the whole way. Nevertheless we saw traces of the last
autumnal crop of bajra and juar, two species of millet, which form the
chief food of the people of the desert; and the vetch was still in
heaps. Bisalpur is situated on a rising ground; the houses are uniform
in height and regularly built, and coated with a compost of mud and
chaff, so that its appearance is picturesque. It is protected by a
circumvallation of thorns, the _kanta-ka-kot_ and the stacks of chaff,
as described at Indara. They are pleasing to the eye, as is everything
in such a place which shows the hand of industry. There was an ancient
city here in former days, which was engulfed by an earthquake, though
part of a gateway and the fragment of a wall still mark its site. No
inscriptions were observed. The water is obtained from a lake.


  Rock Sculptures at Mandor.
  _To face page 850._

=Pachkalia, Bīchkalia.=—_November 21._—Pachkalia, or Bichkalia, five
coss (11 miles 5 furlongs): crossed and encamped on the Jojri. The soil
improving, of a brown sandy texture. Wheat and barley of excellent
quality are grown on the banks of the river. It was a relief to meet
once more a babul or a nim tree; even our Godwar cypress reared its head
on the margin of the Jojri. Although now only containing a hundred
houses, this was once a place of some importance. I found a defaced
inscription, in which “the son of Sonang, S. 1224,” was still legible;
but the mercenary Pathans have ruined the harvest of the antiquary. The
village is a grant in fee to a Bhatti chieftain. Water is obtained from
wells excavated on the margin of the river.

=Pīpār.=—_November 22._—Pipar, four coss (8 miles 2 furlongs). Pursued
the course of the river, the most extended arm of the Luni, coming from
the hills near Parbatsar, on the frontiers of Jaipur. Its course is
marked by the trees already mentioned. The soil, a mixture of black
earth and sand, is termed _dhamani_. Pipar is a town of 1500 houses,
one-third of which are inhabited by the Oswals of the Jain faith, the
chief merchants of all their country. There are also about two hundred
families of Mahesris, or merchants of the Saiva caste. Pipar carries on
a considerable traffic, and has a chintz manufactory, which employs
thirty families. It is in the grant of the feudal chief of Nimaj, whose
death has been already related. A cenotaph, dedicated to one of his
ancestors, has been half destroyed by the Goths of India. Pipar is
celebrated in the traditions of the desert as one of the cities [738]
founded by Gandharvasen, the Pramara monarch of Avanti, prior to the
Christian era.[4.28.3] The only inscription I discovered was in a temple
of the sea-goddess Lakshmi. It bore the names of Bijai Singh and
Delanji, Rajputs of the Guhilot race, with the ancient title of Rawal.
It was a happy confirmation of the most ancient chronicle of Mewar,
which divides the Guhilots into twenty-four _sakha_ or branches, of
which one is called ‘Piparia,’ doubtless from their having conquered
this tract from the Takshak Pramara.

There is an abundance of wells, from sixty to eighty feet in depth. Of
one recently excavated, I obtained the following details of the strata,
which may be gratifying to the geologist. The first twenty feet are
composed entirely of that kind of earth called _dhamani_, chiefly
decomposed sandstone with a mixture of black earth, in which occurs a
stratum of bluish clay mixed with particles of quartz: this earth is
called _morar_ in Marwar, and _morand_ in Jaipur. It was then necessary
to cut through a rock of red granite[4.28.4] for thirty feet; then
several feet of an almost milk-white steatite, succeeded by stalactitic
concretions of sandstone and quartz.

=Legend of the Sāmpu Lake.=—Good water is also obtained from a lake
called the Sampu, which is connected with the tradition of the
foundation of Pipar. A Brahman of the Pali tribe, whose name was Pipa,
was in the habit of carrying milk to a deity of the Serpent (Takshak)
race, whose retreat was on the banks of this lake, and who deposited two
pieces of gold in return for the Paliwal’s offering. Being compelled to
go to Nagor, he gave instructions to his son to perform his charitable
office; but the youth, deeming it a good opportunity to become master of
the treasure, took a stick with him, and when the serpent issued forth
for his accustomed fare, he struck him violently; but the snake being
“scotched, not killed,” retreated to his hole. The young Brahman related
his adventure to his mother; when the good woman, dreading the vengeance
of the serpentine deity, prepared a servant and bullock to convey her
son to his father at Nagor. But what was her horror in the morning, when
she went to call the youth, to find, instead of him, the huge serpent
coiled up in his bed! Pipa, on his return, was inconsolable; but
stifling his revenge, he propitiated the serpent with copious libations
of milk. The scaly monster was conciliated, and revealed the stores he
guarded to Pipa, commanding him to raise a monument which would transmit
a knowledge of the event to future ages [739]. Hence Pipar arose from
Pipa the Pali, and the name of the lake Sampu, from his benefactor the
‘serpent’ (sampa). All these allegorical tales regard the Takshak races,
the followers of the religion of Buddha or Jaina, and their feuds with
the Brahmanical sects. It is evident that Pipa the Pali worshipped both;
and the very name induces a belief that the whole Paliwal caste are
converts from Buddhism.[4.28.5]

=Lākha Phulāni.=—There is a kund or fountain, called after Lakha
Phulani, who ruled in ancient times at Phulra, in the farther corner of
the desert, but carried his arms even to the ocean. Wherever I have
travelled, tradition is loud in praise of Phulani, from the source of
the Luni to its embouchure in the Delta of the Indus.[4.28.6]

=Mādreo.=—_November 23._—Madreo, five coss (10 miles 2 furlongs). Roads
good; soil as yesterday, but the country very desolate; only stunted
shrubs since we removed from the margin of the river. This is a
moderate-sized village, with a tank of good water.

=Bharūnda.=—_November 24._—Bharunda, four coss, or eight miles. The face
of the country now changes materially; our route was over a low
undulating ridge of sandstone, in which the stunted shrubs of this
region find a bed. At one time the elevation was sufficiently great to
allow the chasm through which the road passed to be dignified with the
name of the Ghasuria Pass, in which a party of the Raja’s men is posted
for defence, and the levy of transit duties. Bharunda is in the fief of
Gopal Singh, the chief of Kuchaman, one of the most conspicuous of the
Mertia clan. It consists of one hundred and fifty houses; the
cultivators are Jats, as are those of all the preceding villages.

I paid a visit to the humble cenotaphs of Bharunda; one of them bore the
name of Badan Singh, a sub-vassal of Kuchaman, who was slain in the
heroic charge against De Boigne’s brigades, in the patriot field of
Merta. His name claims the admiration of all who esteem loyalty and
patriotism, the inherent virtues of the chivalrous Rajput. Raja Bijai
Singh had resumed Bharunda, when the Thakur [740] retired to the
adjacent court of Jaipur, where he was well received according to the
hospitable customs of the Rajput, and had risen to favour at the period
when the Mahrattas invaded his _bapota_, ‘the land of his fathers.’
Resentment was instantly sacrificed at the altar of patriotism; he put
himself at the head of one hundred and fifty horse, and flew to his
sovereign’s and his country’s defence. Unhappily, the whole Mahratta
army interposed between him and his countrymen. To cut their way through
all impediments was the instant resolve of Badan and his brave
companions. They fell sword in hand upon a multitude; and, with the
exception of a few, who forced their way (amongst whom was the chief
whose monument is referred to), they were cut to pieces. Badan Singh
lived to reach his ancient estate, which was restored to his family in
token of his sovereign’s gratitude for the gallant deed. It is valued at
seven thousand rupees annual rent, and has attached to it, as a
condition, the service of defending this post. There was another small
altar erected to the manes of Partap, who was killed in the defence of
this pass against the army of Aurangzeb.

=Indāwar.=—_November 25._—Indawar, five coss (10 miles 2 furlongs). This
place consists of two hundred houses; the cultivators are Jats. I have
said little of these proprietors of the soil, a sturdy, independent,
industrious race, who “venerate the plough,” and care little about the
votaries of Mars or their concerns, so that they do not impose excessive
taxes on them. They are a stout, well-built, though rather murky race.
The village is assigned to the ex-prince of Sind, who derives his sole
support from the liberality of the princes of Marwar. He is of the tribe
called Kalhora,[4.28.7] and claims descent from the Abbassides of
Persia. His family has been supplanted by the Talpuris, a branch of the
Numris (the foxes) of Baluchistan, who now style themselves Afghans, but
who are in fact one of the most numerous of the Getae or Jat colonies
from Central Asia. But let us not wander from our subject.

I will beg the reader to descend seventy or eighty feet with me to view
the stratification of Indawar. First, three feet of good soil; five feet
of red sandy earth, mixed with particles of quartz; six feet of an
unctuous indurated clay;[4.28.8] [741]—then follows a sand-rock, through
which it was necessary to penetrate about sixty feet; this was succeeded
by twenty feet of almost loose sand, with particles of pure quartz
embedded; nodules and stalactitic concretions of sandstone, quartz, and
mica, agglutinated together by a calcareous cement. The interior of the
well throughout this last stratum is faced with masonry: the whole depth
is more than sixty-five cubits, or forty yards. At this depth a spring
of excellent water broke in upon the excavators, which supplies Indawar.

=Merta.=—_November 26._—Merta, four coss (9 miles 1 furlong). The whole
march was one extended plain; the Aravalli towering about twenty-five
miles to our right. To the west a wide waste, consisting of plains
gently undulating, and covered with grass and underwood. Natural
sterility is not the cause of this desert aspect, for the soil is rich;
but the water is far beneath the surface, and they cannot depend upon
the heavens. Juar, moth, and sesamum were cultivated to a considerable
extent in the immediate vicinity of the villages, but the product had
this season been scanty. The appearance of the town is imposing, its
site being on a rising ground. The spires of the mosque which was
erected on the ruins of a Hindu temple by the tyrant Aurangzeb overtop
the more ponderous and unaspiring mandirs which surround it.
Notwithstanding, this monarch was the object of universal execration to
the whole Hindu race, more especially to the Rathors (whose sovereign,
the brave Jaswant, together with his elder son, he put to death by
poison, and kept Ajit twenty long years from his birthright, besides
deluging their fields with the richest blood of his nobles); still, such
is Hindu toleration, that a marble is placed, inscribed both in Hindi
and Persian, to protect the mosque from violence. This mark of
liberality proceeded from the pretender Dhonkal Singh, as if with a view
of catching golden opinions from the demoralized Pathans, by whose aid
he hoped to regain his rights. But how was he deceived! His advances
were met by the foul assassination, at one fell swoop, of all his party,
by the chief of these mercenaries, Amir Khan.

Merta was founded by Rao Duda of Mandor, whose son, the celebrated
Maldeo, erected the castle, which he called Malkot.[4.28.9] Merta, with
its three hundred and sixty townships, became the appanage of his son
Jaimall, and gave its name of Mertia to the bravest of the brave clans
of the Rathors. Jaimall [742] was destined to immortalize his name
beyond the limits of Maru. Distrusted by his father, and likely to be
deserving of suspicion, from the very ruse to which Sher Shah
acknowledged he owed his safety, he was banished from Marwar. He was
hospitably received by the Rana, who assigned to the heir of Mandor the
rich district of Badnor, equalling his own in extent, and far richer in
soil than the plains he had abandoned. How he testified his gratitude
for this reception, nobler pens than mine have related. The great Akbar
claimed the honour of having with his own hand sealed his fate: he
immortalized the matchlock with which he effected it, and which was also
the theme of Jahangir’s praise, who raised a statue in honour of this
defender of Chitor and the rights of its infant prince.[4.28.10]
Abu-l-fazl, Herbert, the chaplain to Sir T. Roe, Bernier, all honoured
the name of Jaimall; and the chivalrous Lord Hastings, than whom none
was better able to appreciate Rajput valour, manifested his respect by
his desire to conciliate his descendant, the present brave baron of

The town of Merta covers a large space of ground, and is enclosed with a
strong wall and bastions, composed of earth to the westward, but of
freestone to the east. All, however, are in a state of decay, as well as
the town itself, which is said to contain twenty thousand houses. Like
most Hindu towns, there is a mixture of magnificence and poverty; a
straw or mud hut adjoins a superb house of freestone, which “shames the
meanness” of its neighbour. The castle is about a gun-shot to the
south-west of the town, and encloses an area of a mile and a half. Some
small sheets of water are on the eastern and western faces. There are
plenty of wells about the town, but the water has an unpleasant taste,
from filtering through a stiff clay. There are but two strata before
water is found, which is about twenty-five feet from the surface: the
first a black mould, succeeded by the clay, incumbent on a loose sand,
filled with quartzose pebbles of all hues, and those stalactitic
concretions which mark, throughout the entire line from Jodhpur to
Ajmer, the stratum in which the springs find a current. There are many
small lakes around the town, as the Dudasar, or ‘lake (_sar_) of Duda’;
the Bejpa, the Durani, the Dangolia, etc.

=The Battlefield.=—The plain of Merta is one continuous sepulchre,
covered with altars to the manes of the warriors who, either in the
civil wars which have distracted this State [743], or in the more
patriotic strife with the southron Goths, have drenched it with their
blood. It is impossible to pass over this memorable field without a
reference to these acts; but they would be unintelligible without going
to the very root of dissension, which not only introduced the Mahratta
to decide the intestine broils of the Rajput States, but has entailed a
perpetuity of discord on that of Marwar. I have already succinctly
related the parricidal murder of Raja Ajit, which arose out of the
politics of the imperial court, when the Sayyids of Barha[4.28.12]—the
Warwicks of the East—deposed the Emperor Farrukhsiyar, and set up a
puppet of their own. With his daughter (whose marriage with the emperor
originated, as already recorded, the first grant of land to the
East-India Company), he retired to his dominions, leaving his son Abhai
Singh at court, and refusing his sanction to the nefarious schemes of
the Sayyids. They threatened destruction to Marwar, declaring to the son
of Ajit that the only mode of averting its ruin was his own elevation,
and his subservience to their views, which object could only be obtained
by his father’s deposal and death. Even the reasoning resorted to, as
well as the dire purpose of the miscreants, is preserved, and may serve
as an illustration of Rajput feeling. When Abhai Singh refused or
hesitated, he was asked, “_Ma bap ka sakha, ya zamin ka sakha?_” which,
though difficult to render with accuracy, may be translated: “Are you a
branch (_sakha_) of the land or of your parents?” As before said, land
is all in all to the Rajput; it is preferred to everything: Abhai’s
reply may therefore be inferred. Immediate installation was to be the
reward of his revenging the Sayyids. That nature could produce from the
same stock two such monsters as the brothers who effected the deed, is,
perhaps, hardly conceivable, and would, probably, not be credited, were
not the fact proved beyond doubt. I should desire, for the honour of the
Rajput race, whose advocate and apologist I candidly avow myself, to
suppress the atrocious record: but truth is dearer even than Rajput
character. Of the twelve sons of Ajit, Abhai Singh and Bakhta Singh were
the two elder; both were by the same mother, a princess of Bundi. To
Bakhta Singh, who was with his father, the eldest brother wrote,
promising him the independent sovereignty of Nagor (where they then
were), with its five hundred and fifty-five townships, as the price of
murdering their common sire. Not only was the wretch unstartled by the
proposition, but he executed the deed with his own hands, under
circumstances of unparalleled atrocity. His [744] mother always dreaded
the temperament and disposition of Bakhta, who was bold, haughty,
impetuous, with a perpetual thirst for action; and she cautioned her
husband never to admit him into his presence after dusk, or when
unattended. But the Raja, whose physical strength was equal to his
bravery, ridiculed her fears, observing, “Is he not my child? Besides, a
slap on the face from me would annihilate the stripling.” Upon receiving
the note from his brother, Bakhta, after taking leave of his father,
concealed himself in a chamber adjoining that where his parents reposed.
When all was still the murderer stole to the bed in which lay the
authors of his existence, and from a pallet, on which were placed the
arms of Ajit, he seized his sword, and coolly proceeded to exhaust those
veins which contained the same blood that flowed in his own. In order
that nothing might be wanting to complete the deed of horror, the mother
was awakened by the blood of her lord moistening her bosom. Her cries
awoke the faithful Rajputs who lay in the adjacent apartments, and who,
bursting into the chamber, discovered their prince and father dead:
“Treason had done its worst.” The assassin fled to the roof of the
palace, barring the gates behind him, which resisted all attempts to
force them until morning, when he threw into the court below the letter
of his brother, exclaiming, “This put the Maharaja to death, not I.”
Abhai Singh was now their sovereign; and it is the actual occupant of
the throne whom the Rajput deems entitled to his devotion. Eighty-four
Satis took place on this dire occasion, the parent of these unnatural
regicidal and parricidal sons leading the funeral procession. So much
was Ajit beloved, that even men devoted themselves on his pyre. Such was
the tragical end of the great Ajit, lamented by his chiefs, and
consecrated by the bard, in stanzas in honour of him and in execration
of the assassins; which afford proof of the virtuous independence of the
poetic chronicler of Rajasthan.

                 _Bakhta, Bakhta, bāhira,
                 Kyūn māryo Ajmāl[4.28.13]
                 Hindwāni ro sevro
                 Turkāni ka sāl?_

                 “Oh Bakhta, in evil hour
                 Why slew you Ajmāl,
                 The pillar of the Hindu,
                 The lance of the Turk?” [745][4.28.14]

=The Sons of Ajīt Singh.=—Bakhta Singh obtained Nagor; and Abhai Singh
was rewarded with the viceroyalty of Gujarat, which gift he repaid by
aiding in its partition, and annexing the rich districts of Bhinmal,
Sanchor, and others, to Marwar; on which occasion he added Jalor to the
domain of his brother Bakhta, or, as the bard styles him, _bad-bakhta_,
‘the unfortunate.’ This additional reward of parricide has been the
cause of all the civil wars of Marwar.

We may slightly notice the other sons of Ajit, whose issue affected the
political society of Rajputana. Of these,

Devi Singh was given for adoption to Maha Singh, head of the Champawat
clan, he having no heirs. Devi Singh then held Bhinmal, but which he
could not retain against the Koli tribes around him, and Pokaran was
given in exchange. Sabal Singh, Sawai Singh, and Salim Singh (whose
escape from the fate of the chieftain of Nimaj has been noticed) are the
lineal issue of this adoption.

Anand Singh, another son of Ajit, was in like manner adopted into the
independent State of Idar, and his issue are heirs-presumptive to the
throne of Marwar.

=Effects of Adoption.=—From these races we derive the knowledge of a
curious fact, namely, that the issue of the younger brother maintains a
claim, though adopted into a foreign and independent State; while all
such claims are totally extinguished by adoption into a home clan. Under
no circumstances could the issue of Devi Singh sit on the _gaddi_ of
Marwar; when adopted into the Champawat clan, he surrendered all claims
derived from his birth, which were merged into his vassal rank. Still
the recollection must give weight and influence; and it is evident from
the boast of the haughty Devi Singh, when his head was on the block,
that there is danger in these adoptions.

Abhai Singh died, leaving a memorial of his prowess in the splendid
additions he made to his territories from the tottering empire of Delhi.
He was succeeded by his son Ram Singh, on whose accession his uncle
Bakhta sent his aged foster-mother, an important personage in Rajwara,
with the _tika_ and gifts, and other symbols of congratulation. Ram
Singh, who had all the impetuosity of his race, received the
lady-ambassador with no friendly terms, asking her if his uncle had no
better messenger to salute his new sovereign. He refused the gifts, and
commanded her to tell his uncle to surrender Jalor. The offended dame
[746] extenuated nothing of the insolence of the message. The reply was,
however, courteous, implying that both Jalor and Nagor were at his
disposal. The same sarcastic spirit soon precipitated matters between
them in the following manner.

Kusal Singh of Awa, the premier noble of Marwar, and of all the clans of
Champawat, more brave than courtly, was short in stature, sturdy,
boorish, and blunt; he became the object of his young sovereign’s
derision, who used to style him the _gurji gandhak_, or ‘turnspit dog,’
and who had once the audacity to say, “Come, gurji”; when he received
the laconic reproof: “Yes; the gurji that dare bite the lion.”


  _To face page 860._

Brooding over this merited retort, he was guilty of another sarcasm,
which closed the breach against all reconciliation. Seated one day in
the garden of Mandor, he asked the same chief the name of a tree. “The
champa,” was the reply, “and the pride of the garden, as I am of your
Rajputs.” “Cut it down instantly,” said the prince; “root it out;
nothing which bears the name of champa shall exist in Marwar.”

Kaniram of Asop, the chief of the next most powerful clan, the Kumpawat,
was alike the object of this prince’s ridicule. His countenance, which
was not “cast in nature’s finest mould,” became a butt for his wit, and
he would familiarly say to him, ‘_ao budha bandar_,’ “Come along, old
monkey.” Boiling with rage, the chief observed, “When the monkey begins
to dance, you will have some mirth.” Leaving the court, with his brother
chieftain of Awa, they collected their retainers and families, and
marched to Nagor. Bakhta Singh was absent, but being advised by his
locum tenens of his visitors, and of their quarrel with his nephew, he
lost no time in joining them. It is said he expostulated with them, and
offered himself as mediator; but they swore never again to look in the
face of Ram Singh as their sovereign. They offered to place Bakhta Singh
on the _gaddi_ of Jodha; and threatened, if he refused, to abandon
Marwar. He played the part of our Richard for a short time; but the
habitual arrogance of his nephew soon brought matters to a crisis. As
soon as he heard that the two leaders of all his vassals were received
by his uncle, he addressed him, demanding the instant surrender of
Jalor. Again he had the courtly reply: “He dare not contend against his
sovereign; and if he came to visit him, he would meet him with a vessel
of water.”[4.28.15] War, a [747] horrid civil war, was now decided on;
the challenge was given and accepted, and the plains of Merta were fixed
upon to determine this mortal strife, in which brother was to meet
brother, and all the ties of kin were to be severed by the sword. The
Mertia clans, the bravest, as they are the most loyal and devoted, of
all the brave clans of Maru, united to a man under the sovereign’s
standard; the chiefs of Rian, Budsa, Mihtri, Kholar, Bhorawar, Kuchaman,
Alniawas, Jusari, Bokri, Bharunda, Irwa, Chandarun, collected around
them every vassal who could wield a brand. Most of the clans of Jodha,
attracted by the name of _swamidharma_, ‘fidelity to their lord,’ united
themselves to the Mertias; though a few, as Ladnun, Nimbi, were on the
adverse side; but the principal leaders, as Khairwa, Govindgarh, and
Bhadrajun, were faithful to their salt. Of the services of others, Ram
Singh’s insolence deprived him. Few remained neuter. But these
defections were nothing to the loss of a body of five thousand Jareja
auxiliaries, whom his connexion with a daughter of the prince of Bhuj
brought to his aid. When the tents were moved outside the capital, an
incident occurred which, while it illustrates the singular character of
the Rajput, may be regarded as the real cause of the loss of sovereignty
to Ram Singh. An inauspicious raven had perched upon the _kanat_, or
wall of the tent in which was the Jareja queen, who, skilled in the art
of the _suguni_[4.28.16] (augur), determined to avert it. Like all
Rajputnis, who can use firearms on occasion, she seized a matchlock at
hand, and, ere he “thrice croaked,” she shot him dead. The impetuous
Raja, enraged at this instance of audacity and disrespect, without
inquiry ordered the culprit to be dragged before him; nor was his anger
assuaged when the name of the Rani was given. He reviled her in the
grossest terms: “Tell the Rani,” he said, “to depart my dominions, and
to return from whence she came.” She entreated and conjured him, by a
regard to his own safety, to revoke the decree; but all in vain; and
with difficulty could she obtain a short interview, but without
effecting any change in her obdurate lord. Her last words were, “With my
exile from your presence, you will lose the crown of Marwar.” She
marched that instant, carrying with her the five thousand auxiliaries
whose presence must have ensured his victory.

The Udawat clans, led by their chiefs of Nimaj, Raepur, and Raus, with
all [748] the Karansots under the Thakur of Khinwasar, united their
retainers with the Champawats and Kumpawats under the banners of Bakhta

=Battle between Bakhta Singh and Rāja Rām Singh, A.D. 1752.=—Ram Singh’s
array fell far short of his rival’s since the defection of the Jarejas;
yet, trusting to the name of sovereign as “a tower of strength,” he
boldly marched to the encounter, and when he reached the hostile field
encamped near the Ajmer gate of Merta. His rival was not long behind,
and marshalled his clans within three miles of the northern portal,
called the gate of Nagor. The spot he chose had a sacred character, and
was called Mataji ka Than, where there was a shrine of the Hindu Hecate,
with a fountain said to have been constructed by the Pandavas.

Bakhta Singh commenced the battle. Leaving his camp standing, he
advanced against his nephew and sovereign, whom he saluted with a
general discharge of his artillery. A vigorous cannonade was continued
on both sides throughout the day, without a single man seeking a closer
encounter. It is no wonder they paused ere the sword was literally
drawn. Here was no foreign foe to attack; brother met brother, friend
encountered friend, and the blood which flowed in the veins of all the
combatants was derived from one common fountain. The reluctance
proceeded from the στοργή, the innate principle of natural affection.
Evening advanced amidst peals of cannon, when an incident, which could
only occur in an army of Rajputs, stopped the combat. On the banks of
the Bejpa lake, the scene of strife, there is a monastery of Dadupanti
ascetics, built by Raja Sur Singh. It was nearly midway between the
rival armies, and the shot fell so thick amidst these recluses that they
fled in a body, leaving only the old patriarch. Baba (father) Kishandeo
disdained to follow his disciples, and to the repeated remonstrances
from either party to withdraw, he replied, that if it was his fate to
die by a shot he could not avert it; if not, the balls were innoxious:
but although he feared not for himself, yet his gardens and monastery
were not “charmed,” and he commanded them to fight no longer on that
ground. The approach of night, and the sacred character of the old abbot
Dadupanti, conspired to make both parties obey his commands, and they
withdrew to their respective encampments.

The dawn found the armies in battle-array, each animated with a deadly
determination. It was Raja Ram’s turn to open this day’s combat, and he
led the van against his uncle. Burning with the recollection of the
indignities he had [749] suffered, the chief of Awa, determined to show
that “the cur could bite,” led his Champawats to the charge against his
sovereign. Incited by loyalty and devotion “to the gaddi of Marwar,”
reckless who was its occupant, the brave Mertias met his onset steel in
hand. The ties of kin were forgotten, or if remembered, the sense of the
unnatural strife added a kind of frenzy to their valour, and confirmed
their resolution to conquer or die. Here the Mertia, fighting under the
eye of this valiant though intemperate prince, had to maintain his
ancient fame, as “the first sword of Maru.” There his antagonist, the
Champawat, jealous of this reputation, had the like incentive, besides
the obligation to revenge the insults offered to his chief. The conflict
was awful: the chieftains of each valiant clan met hand to hand,
singling out each other by name. Sher Singh, chief of all the Mertias,
was the first who sealed his devotion by his death. His place was soon
filled by his brother, burning for vengeance. Again he cheered on his
Mertias to avenge the death of their lord, as he propelled his steed
against the chief of the Champawats. They were the sons of two sisters
of the Jaipur house, and had hitherto lived in amity and brotherly love,
now exchanged for deadly hate. They encountered, when the “cur” bit the
dust, and was borne from the field. The loss of their leaders only
inflamed the vassals on both sides, and it was long before either
yielded a foot of ground. But numbers, and the repeated charges of
Bakhta Singh who led wherever his nephew could be found, at length
prevailed; though not until the extinction of the clan of Mertia, who,
despising all odds, fought unto the death. Besides their head of Rian,
there fell the sub-vassals of Irwa, Sewara, Jusari, and Mithri, with his
three gallant sons, and almost all their retainers.

=The Death of the Mīthri Chief.=—There is nothing more chivalrous in the
days of Edward and Cressy than the death of the heir of Mithri, who,
with his father and brothers, sealed his fealty with his blood on this
fatal field. He had long engaged the hand of a daughter of a chief of
the Narukas, and was occupied with the marriage rites, when tidings
reached him of the approach of the rebels to Merta. The knot had just
been tied, their hands had been joined—but he was a Mertia—he unlocked
his hand from that of the fair Naruki, to court the Apsaras in the field
of battle. In the bridal vestments, with the nuptial coronet (_maur_)
encircling his forehead, he took his station with his clan in the second
day’s fight, and “obtained a bride in Indra’s [750] abode.”[4.28.17] The
bards of Maru dwell with delight on the romantic glory of the youthful
heir of Mithri, as they repeat in their Doric verse,

                      Kānān moti bulbula
                      Gal sonē ki māla
                      Assi kos khariya āya
                      Kunwar Mīthriwala.[4.28.18]

The paraphernalia here enumerated are very foreign to the cavalier of
the west: “with pearls shining in his ears, and a golden chaplet round
his neck, a space of eighty coss came the heir of Mithri.”

The virgin bride followed her lord from Jaipur, but instead of being met
with the tabor and lute, and other signs of festivity, wail and
lamentation awaited her within the lands of Mithri, where tidings came
of the calamity which at once deprived this branch of the Mertias of all
its supporters. Her part was soon taken; she commanded the pyre to be
erected; and with the turban and _tora_[4.28.19] which adorned her lord
on this fatal day, she followed his shade to the mansions of the sun. I
sought out the cenotaph of this son of honour in the blood-stained
field; but the only _couronne immortelle_ I could wreathe on the sandy
plain was supplied by the Bardai, whose song is full of martial fire as
he recounts the gallantry of Kunwar Mithriwala.

The Mertias, and their compeers on the side of the prince, made sad
havoc amongst their opponents; and they still maintain that it was owing
to the artillery alone that they were defeated. Their brave and loyal
leader, Sher Singh of Rian, had fruitlessly endeavoured to recall his
brother-in-law from the path of treason, but ineffectually; he spoke
with sarcasm of his means to supplant Ram Singh by his uncle. The reply
of the old baron of Awa is characteristic: “At least I will turn the
land upside down”; to which Sher Singh rejoined, angrily, he would do
his best to prevent him. Thus they parted; nor did they meet again till
in arms at Merta.

In surveying this field of slaughter, the eye discerns no _point
d’appui_, no village or key of position, to be the object of a struggle:
nothing to obstruct the doubly-gorged falconet, which has no terrors for
the uncontrollable valour of the Rathor; it perceives but a level plain,
extended to the horizon, and now covered with the memorials of this
day’s strife. Here appears the colonnaded mausoleum, with its airy
cupola; there the humble altar, with its simple record of the name,
clan, and _sakha_ of him whose ashes repose beneath, with the date of
the event [751], inscribed in rude characters. Of these monumental
records I had copies made of about a score; they furnish fresh evidence
of the singular character of the Rajput.

Ram Singh retired within the walls of the city, which he barricaded; but
it being too extensive to afford the chance of defence against the
enemy, he formed the fatal resolution of calling to his aid the
Mahrattas, who were then rising into notice. At midnight he fled to the
south; and at Ujjain found the Mahratta leader, Jai Apa Sindhia, with
whom he concerted measures for the invasion of his country. Meantime his
uncle being master of the field, repaired, without loss of time, to the
capital, where he was formally enthroned; and his _an_ was proclaimed
throughout Marwar. As skilful as he was resolute, he determined to meet
on his frontier the threatened invasion, and accordingly advanced to
Ajmer, in order to interpose between the Mahrattas and Jaipur, whose
prince, Isari Singh,[4.28.20] was father-in-law to his rival. He wrote
him a laconic epistle, requiring him either instantly to unite with him
in attacking the Mahrattas, or declare himself his foe. The Jaipur
prince had many powerful reasons for not supporting Raja Bakhta, but he
at the same time dreaded his enmity. In this extremity, he had recourse
to an expedient too common in cases of difficulty. Concerting with his
wife, a princess of Idar (then ruled by one of the sons of Ajit), the
best mode of extrication from his difficulties, he required her aid to
revenge the foul murder of Ajit, and to recover his son’s right. “In
either case,” said he, “the sword must decide, for he leaves me no
alternative: against him I have no hopes of success; and if I march to
the aid of an assassin and usurper, I lose the good opinion of mankind.”
In short, he made it appear that she alone could rescue him from his
perils. It was therefore resolved to punish one crime by the commission
of another. Isari Singh signified his assent; and to lull all suspicion,
the Rathorni was to visit her uncle in his camp on the joint frontier of
the three States of Mewar, Marwar, and Amber. A poisoned robe was the
medium of revenge. Raja Bakhta, soon after the arrival of his niece, was
declared in a fever; the physician was summoned: but the man of secrets,
the Vaidya, declared he was beyond the reach of medicine, and bade him
prepare for other scenes. The intrepid Rathor, yet undismayed, received
the tidings even with a jest: “What, Suja,” said he, “no cure? Why do
you take my lands and eat their produce, if you cannot combat my
maladies? What is your art good for?” The Vaidya excavated a [752] small
trench in the tent, which he filled with water; throwing into it some
ingredient, the water became gelid. “This,” said he, “can be effected by
human skill; but your case is beyond it: haste, perform the offices
which religion demands.” With perfect composure he ordered the chiefs to
assemble in his tent; and having recommended to their protection, and
received their promise of defending the rights of his son, he summoned
the ministers of religion into his presence. The last gifts to the
church, and these her organs, were prepared; but with all his firmness,
the anathema of the Satis, as they ascended the funeral pyre on which
his hand had stretched his father, came into his mind; and as he
repeated the ejaculation, “May your corpse be consumed in foreign land!”
he remembered he was then on the border. The images which crossed his
mental vision it is vain to surmise: he expired as he uttered these
words; and over his remains, which were burnt on the spot, a cenotaph
was erected, and is still called Bura Dewal, the ‘Shrine of Evil.’


  _To face page 866._

But for that foul stain, Raja Bakhta would have been one of the first
princes of his race. It never gave birth to a bolder; and his wisdom was
equal to his valour. Before the commission of that act, he was adored by
his Rajputs. He was chiefly instrumental in the conquests made from
Gujarat; and afterwards, in conjunction with his brother, in defeating
the imperial viceroy, Sarbuland.[4.28.21] His elevation could not be
called a usurpation, since Ram Singh was totally incapacitated, through
his ungovernable passions, for sovereign sway; and the brave barons of
Marwar, “all sons of the same father with their prince,” have always
exercised the right of election, when physical incapacity rendered such
a measure requisite. It is a right which their own customary laws, as
well as the rules of justice, have rendered sacred. According to this
principle, nearly all the feudality of Maru willingly recognized, and
swore to maintain, the claims of his successor, Bijai Singh. The Rajas
of Bikaner and Kishangarh, both independent branches of this house, gave
in their assent. Bijai Singh was accordingly proclaimed and installed at
Marot, and forthwith conducted to Merta.

The ex-prince, Ram Singh, accompanied Jai Apa to the siege of Kotah, and
subsequently through Mewar, levying contributions as they passed to
Ajmer. Here a dispute occurred between the brave Rathor and Sindhia,
whose rapacious spirit for plunder received a severe reproof:
nevertheless they crossed the frontier [753], and entered Marwar. Bijai
Singh, with all the hereditary valour of his race, marched to meet the
invaders, at the head of nearly all the chivalry of Maru, amounting to
200,000 men.

=Battle of Merta, about A.D. 1756.=—The first day both armies
encountered, they limited their hostility to a severe cannonade and
partial actions, the inhabitants of Merta supplying the combatants with
food, in which service many were killed; even the recluse Dadupantis ran
the risk in this patriotic struggle, and several of the old patriarch’s
disciples suffered. The second day passed in the same manner, with many
desperate charges of cavalry, in which the Mahrattas invariably
suffered, especially from a select body of 5000 select horse, all cased
in armour, which nothing could withstand. The superior numerical
strength of Ram Singh and his allies compelled Bijai Singh not to
neglect the means of retreat. Throughout the first and second days’
combat, the cattle of the train had been kept yoked; on the third, they
had carried them to a small rivulet in the rear to water. It was at the
precise moment of time when the legion of cuirassiers were returning
from a charge which had broken to pieces the Mahratta line, as they
approached their friends, the word ‘_daga_’ spread like wildfire; they
were mistaken for Ram Singh’s adherents, and a murderous shower of grape
opened upon the flower of their own army, who were torn to pieces ere
the fatal error was discovered. But such was the impression which this
band of heroes had just made on the Mahrattas, that they feared to take
advantage of this disaster. A feeling of horror pervaded the army of
Bijai Singh, as the choice of their chivalry conveyed the slain and the
wounded to the camp. A council of war was summoned, and the aid of
superstition came to cool that valour which the Mahrattas, in spite of
their numbers, could never subdue. The Raja was young—only twenty years
of age; and being prudent as well as brave, he allowed experience to
guide him. The Raja of Bikaner, of the same kin and clan, took the lead,
and advised a retreat. In the accident related, he saw the hand of
Providence, which had sent it to serve as a signal to desist. The Raja
had a great stake to lose, and doubtless deemed it wise to preserve his
auxiliaries for the defence of his own dominions. It was a case which
required the energy of Bakhta: but the wavering opinion of the council
soon spread throughout the camp, and was not unobserved by the enemy;
nor was it till Bikaner marched off with his aid, towards the close of
the day, that any advantage was taken of it [754]. Then Ram Singh at the
head of a body of Rajputs and Mahrattas poured down upon them, and
‘_sauve qui peut_’ became the order of the day. To gain Merta was the
main object of the discomfited and panic-struck Rathors; but many chiefs
with their vassals marched direct for their estates. The guns were
abandoned to their fate, and became the first proud trophy the Mahrattas
gained over the dreaded Rajputs. The Raja of Kishangarh, also a Rathor,
followed the example of his brother prince of Bikaner, and carried off
his bands. Thus deserted by his dispirited and now dispersed barons, the
young prince had no alternative but flight, and at midnight he took the
route of Nagor. In the darkness he mistook the road, or was misled into
that of Rain, whose chieftain was the companion of his flight. Calling
him by name, Lal Singh, he desired him to regain the right path; but the
orders of a sovereign at the head of a victorious army, and those of a
fugitive prince, are occasionally received, even amongst Rajputs, with
some shades of distinction. The chief begged permission, as he was near
home, to visit his family and bring them with him. Too dignified to
reply, the young prince remained silent and the Thakur of Rain[4.28.22]
loitered in the rear. The Raja reached Kajwana, with only five of his
cuirassiers (_silahposh_) as an escort. Here he could not halt with
safety; but as he left the opposite barrier, his horse dropped down
dead. He mounted another belonging to one of his attendants, and gained
Deswal, three miles farther. Here the steeds, which had been labouring
throughout the day under the weight of heavy armour, in addition to the
usual burden of their riders, were too jaded to proceed; and Nagor was
still sixteen miles distant. Leaving his worn-out escort, and concealing
his rank, he bargained with a Jat to convey him before break of day to
the gate of Nagor for the sum of five rupees. The peasant, after
stipulating that the coin should be bijaishahis,[4.28.23] ‘the new
currency,’ which still remains the standard, the common car of husbandry
was brought forth, on which the king of Maru ascended, and was drawn by
a pair of Nagori oxen. The royal fugitive was but little satisfied with
their exertions, though their pace was good, and kept continually urging
them, with the customary cry of “_hank! hank!_“ The honest Jat,
conscious that his cattle did their best, at length lost all temper.
Repeating the sounds ”_hank! hank!_” “Who are you,” asked he, “that are
hurrying on at this rate? It were more becoming [755] that such a sturdy
carl should be in the field with Bijai Singh at Merta, than posting in
this manner to Nagor. One would suppose you had the southrons
(_dakkhinis_) at your heels. Therefore be quiet, for not a jot faster
shall I drive.” Morning broke, and Nagor was yet two miles distant: the
Jat, turning round to view more attentively his impatient traveller, was
overwhelmed with consternation when he recognized his prince. He leaped
from the vehicle, horror-struck that he should have been sitting ‘on the
same level’ with his sovereign, and absolutely refused to sin any longer
against etiquette. “I pardon the occasion,” said the prince mildly;
“obey.” The Jat resumed his seat, nor ceased exclaiming _hank! hank!_
until he reached the gate of Nagor. Here the prince alighted, paid his
price of conveyance, and dismissed the Jat of Deswal, with a promise of
further recompense hereafter. On that day the enemy invested Nagor, but
not before Bijai Singh had dispatched the chief of Harsor to defend the
capital, and issued his proclamations to summon the ban of Marwar.

=Resistance of Bijai Singh.=—During six months he defended himself
gallantly in Nagor, against which the desultory Mahrattas, little
accustomed to the operations of a siege, made no impression, while they
suffered from the sallies of their alert antagonist. Encouraged by their
inactivity, the young prince, imbued with all the native valour of his
race, and impelled by that decisive energy of mind which characterized
his father, determined upon a step which has immortalized his memory. He
resolved to cut his way through the enemy, and solicit succours in
person. He had a dromedary corps five hundred strong. Placing on these a
devoted band of one thousand Rajputs, in the dead of night he passed the
Mahratta lines unobserved, and made direct for Bikaner. Twenty-four
hours sufficed to seat him on the same _gaddi_ with its prince, and to
reveal to him the melancholy fact, that here he had no hopes of succour.
Denied by a branch of his own house, he resorted to a daring experiment
upon the supporter of his antagonist. The next morning he was on his
way, at the head of his dromedary escort, to the capital of the
Kachhwahas, Jaipur. The “ships of the desert” soon conveyed him to that
city. He halted under the walls, and sent a messenger to say that in
person he had come to solicit his assistance.

Isari Singh, the son and successor of the great Sawai Jai Singh, had
neither the talents of his father, nor even the firmness which was the
common inheritance [756] of his race. He dreaded the rival Rathor; and
the pusillanimity which made him become the assassin of the father,
prompted him to a breach of the sacred laws of hospitality (which, with
courage, is a virtue almost inseparable from a Rajput soul), and make a
captive of the son. But the base design was defeated by an instance of
devotion and resolution, which will serve to relieve the Rajput
character from the dark shades which the faithful historian is sometimes
forced to throw into the picture. Civil war is the parent of every
crime, and severs all ties, moral and political; nor must it be expected
that Rajputana should furnish the exception to a rule, which applies to
all mankind in similar circumstances. The civil wars of England and
France, during the conflicts of the White and Red Roses, and those of
the League, will disclose scenes which would suffice to dye with the
deepest hues an entire dynasty of the Rajputs. Let such deeds as the
following be placed on the virtuous side of the account, and the crimes
on the opposite side be ascribed to the peculiarities of their

=Devotion of the Mertias.=—The devoted sacrifice of Sher Singh, the
chief of the Mertia clan, has already been recorded. When victory
declared against the side he espoused, the victorious Bakhta Singh
resumed the estates of Rian from his line, and conferred them on a
younger branch of the family. Jawan Singh was the name of the
individual, and he was now with the chosen band of the son of his
benefactor, soliciting succour from the king of the Kachhwahas. He had
married the daughter of the chief of Achrol, one of the great vassals of
Jaipur, who was deep in the confidence of his sovereign, to whom he
imparted his design to seize the person of his guest and suppliant at
the interview he had granted. Aware that such a scheme could not be
effected without bloodshed, the Achrol chieftain, desirous to save his
son-in-law from danger, under an oath of secrecy revealed the plot, in
order that he might secure himself. The Jaipur prince came to the
‘Travellers’ hall’ (_dharmsala_), where the Rathor had alighted; they
embraced with cordiality, and seated themselves on the same _gaddi_
together. While compliments were yet passing, the faithful Mertia, who,
true to his pledge, had not even hinted to his master the danger that
threatened him, placed himself immediately behind the Jaipur prince,
sitting, as if accidentally, on the flowing skirt of his robe. The Raja,
turning round to the leader of “the first of the swords of Maru,”
remarked “Why, Thakur, have you taken a seat in the background to-day?”
“The day requires it, Maharaja” [757], was the laconic reply: for the
post of the Mertias was the sovereign’s right hand. Turning to his
prince, he said, “Arise, depart, or your life or liberty is endangered.”
Bijai Singh arose, and his treacherous host made an attempt to follow,
but felt his design impeded by the position the loyal chief had taken on
his garment, whose drawn dagger was already pointed to his heart, where
he threatened to sheathe it if any hindrance was offered to the safe
departure of his sovereign, to whom he coolly said, as the prince left
the astonished assembly, “Send me word when you are mounted.” The brave
Bijai Singh showed himself worthy of his servant, and soon sent to say,
“He now only waited for him”: a message, the import of which was not
understood by the treacherous Kachhwaha. The leader of the Mertias
sheathed his dagger—arose—and coming in front of the Raja, made him a
respectful obeisance. The Jaipur prince could not resist the impulse
which such devotion was calculated to produce; he arose, returned the
salutation, and giving vent to his feelings, observed aloud to his
chiefs, “Behold a picture of fidelity! It is in vain to hope for success
against such men as these.”

=Bijai Singh returns to Nāgor.=—Foiled in all his endeavours, Bijai
Singh had no resource but to regain Nagor, which he effected with the
same celerity as he quitted it. Six months more passed away in the
attempt to reduce Nagor; but though the siege was fruitless, not so were
the efforts of his rival Ram Singh in other quarters, to whom almost all
the country had submitted: Marot, Parbatsar, Pali, Sojat had received
his flag; and besides the capital and the town he held in person, Jalor,
Siwana, and Phalodi were the only places which had not been reduced. In
this extremity, Bijai Singh listened to an offer to relieve him from
these multiplied difficulties, which, in its consequences, alienated for
ever the brightest gem in the crown of Marwar.

=The Assassination of Jai Āpa Sindhia, A.D. 1759.=—A Rajput and an
Afghan, both foot-soldiers on a small monthly pay, offered, if their
families were provided for, to sacrifice themselves for his safety by
the assassination of the Mahratta commander. Assuming the garb of
camp-settlers, they approached the headquarters, feigning a violent
quarrel. The simple Mahratta chief was performing his ablutions at the
door of his tent, and as they approached they became more vociferous,
and throwing a bundle of statements of account on the ground, begged he
would decide between them. In this manner they came nearer and nearer,
and as he listened to their story, one plunged his dagger in his side,
exclaiming, “This for Nagor!” and “This for Jodhpur!” said his companion
[758], as he repeated the mortal blow. The alarm was given; the Afghan
was slain; but the Rajput called out “Thief!” and mingling with the
throng, escaped by a drain into the town of Nagor.[4.28.24] Though the
crime was rewarded, the Rathor refused to see the criminal. The siege
continued, but in spite of every precaution, reinforcements both of men
and provisions continued to be supplied. It ill suited the restless
Mahratta to waste his time in these desert regions, which could be
employed so much more profitably on richer lands: a compromise ensued,
in which the cause of Ram Singh was abandoned, on stipulating for a
fixed triennial tribute, and the surrender of the important fortress and
district of Ajmer in full sovereignty to the Mahratta, in _mundkati_, or
compensation for the blood of Jai Apa. The monsoon was then approaching;
they broke up, and took possession of this important conquest, which,
placed in the very heart of these regions, may be called the key of

The cross of St. George now waves over the battlements of
Ajmer,[4.28.25] planted, if there is any truth in political
declarations, not for the purpose of conquest, or to swell the revenues
of British India, but to guard the liberties and the laws of these
ancient principalities from rapine and disorder. It is to be hoped that
this banner will never be otherwise employed, and that it may never be
execrated by the brave Rajput.

The deserted Ram Singh continued to assert his rights with the same
obstinacy by which he lost them; and for which he staked his life in no
less than eighteen encounters against his uncle and cousin. At length,
on the death of Isari Singh of Jaipur, having lost his main support, he
accepted the Marwar share of the Salt Lake of Sambhar, and Jaipur
relinquishing the other half, he resided there until his death [759].


Footnote 4.28.1:

  [_Acacia catechu._]

Footnote 4.28.2:

  [The aconite-leaved kidney-bean, _Phaseolus aconitifolius_.]

Footnote 4.28.3:

  [See p. 913, below.]

Footnote 4.28.4:

  Specimens of all these I brought home.

Footnote 4.28.5:

  [This seems to be merely an instance of serpent-worship.]

Footnote 4.28.6:

  The traditional stanzas are invaluable for obtaining a knowledge both
  of ancient history and geography:

                         “Kasyapgarh, Surajpura,
                         Basakgarh, Tako,
                         Udhanigarh, Jagrupura,
                         Jo Phulgarh, i Lakho.”

  In this stanza we have the names of six ancient cities in the desert,
  which belonged to Lakha, the Tako, Tak, or Takshak, _i.e._ of the race
  figuratively called the ‘serpent.’ [Many tales are told of Lākha
  Phulāni, who by one account was a Rāo of Cutch, slain fighting in
  Kāthiāwār (_BG_, v. 133, viii. 111 note). Others identify him with
  Lakha, son of Phulada, who defeated the Chaulukya king, Mūlarāja, in
  the eleventh century (_ibid._ i. Part i. 160). By another account, he
  was father-in-law of the great Siddharāja (Tod, _WI_, 179). He is
  mentioned twice later on. He was probably a powerful king of the
  desert, round whom many legends have collected.]

Footnote 4.28.7:

  [The Kalhoras, closely allied to the Dāūdputras, rose to power in the
  Lower Indus valley at the end of the seventeenth century A.D. They
  trace their origin to Abbās, uncle of the Prophet. They were expelled
  by Fateh Ali of Tālpur, and the last of the Kalhoras fled to Jodhpur,
  where his descendants now hold distinguished rank (_IGI_, xxii. 397

Footnote 4.28.8:

  Mr. Stokes, of the Royal Asiatic Society, pronounces it to be a

Footnote 4.28.9:

  Rao Duda had three sons, besides Maldeo; namely: First, Raemall;
  second, Birsingh, who founded Amjera in Malwa, still held by his
  descendants; third, Ratan Singh, father of Mira Bai, the celebrated
  wife of Kumbha Rana.

Footnote 4.28.10:

  [See Vol. I. p. 382, above.]

Footnote 4.28.11:

  See Vol. I. p. 567.

Footnote 4.28.12:

  [See Vol. I. p. 467, above.]

Footnote 4.28.13:

  The bards give adjuncts to names in order to suit their rhymes: Ajit
  is the ‘invincible’; Ajmāl, a contraction of Ajayamāl, ‘wealth

Footnote 4.28.14:

  [Major Luard’s Pandit gives the word in the third line as _sihara_ or
  _sihra_, the veil worn by the bridegroom to avert the Evil Eye.]

Footnote 4.28.15:

  This reply refers to a custom analogous to the Scythic investiture, by
  offering “water and soil.” [The Kols and other forest tribes deliver a
  handful of soil to a purchaser of a piece of land (Macpherson,
  _Memorials of Service_, 64).]

Footnote 4.28.16:

  _Sugun pherna_ means to avert the omen of evil.

Footnote 4.28.17:

  [The authority quoted by Compton (_Military Adventurers_, 61) speaks
  of the “serd kopperah wallas” (_zard kaprawāla_, ‘those wearing yellow
  wedding garments’), as the forlorn hope in the battle.]

Footnote 4.28.18:

  [Major Luard’s Pandit reads in the first line _bhalbhala_, ‘a lustre,’
  and in the third _kharoho_, ‘rode hard.’]

Footnote 4.28.19:

  [A neck ornament.]

Footnote 4.28.20:

  [Isari Singh, Mahārāja of Jaipur, A.D. 1742-60.]

Footnote 4.28.21:

  [Nawāb Mubārizu-l-mulk, Governor of Gujarāt under Muhammad Shāh, from
  which office he was removed because he consented to pay blackmail
  (_chauth_) to the Marāthas. He refused to give up his post, and fell
  into disgrace. He was afterwards Governor of Allāhābād, and died A.D.
  1745 (Beale, _Dict. Oriental Biog._ _s.v._; _BG_, i. Part i. 304

Footnote 4.28.22:

  Or _Rahin_ in the map, on the road to Jahil from Merta.

Footnote 4.28.23:

  [Coins made in the reign of Bijai Singh (A.D. 1753-93), (Webb,
  _Currencies of the Hindu States of Rājputāna_, 40).]

Footnote 4.28.24:

  [According to Grant Duff (_Hist. Mahrattas_, 310), Bijai Singh,
  following the infamous example of his father in regard to Pīlaji
  Gāēkwār, engaged two persons who, on the promise of a rent-free estate
  (_jāgīr_), went to Jai Āpa as accredited envoys, and assassinated him.
  Hari Charan Dās (Elliot-Dowson viii. 210) says that the Rājput leader
  warned Jai Āpa to leave Mārwār. Jai Āpa abused him, and the Rājput
  killed him by a blow with his dagger. Three of the Rājput party were
  killed, and three, in spite of their wounds, escaped.]

Footnote 4.28.25:

  [Surrendered to the British by Daulat Rāo Sindhia by treaty of June
  25, 1818, and occupied by the Agent, Mr. Wilder, on July 28 of the
  same year.]


                               CHAPTER 29

=Mahādaji Sindhia, A.D. 1759-94. Battle of Lālsot, A.D. 1787.=—Mahadaji
Sindhia succeeded to the command of the horde led by his relation, Jai
Apa. He had the genius to discover that his southron horse would never
compete with the Rajputs, and he set about improving that arm to which
the Mahrattas finally owed success. This sagacious chief soon perceived
that the political position of the great States of Rajasthan was most
favourable to his views of establishing his power in this quarter. They
were not only at variance with each other, but, as it has already
appeared, were individually distracted with civil dissensions. The
interference of the Rana of Udaipur had obtained for his nephew, Madho
Singh, the _gaddi_ of Jaipur; but this advantage was gained only through
the introduction of the Mahrattas, and the establishment of a tribute,
as in Marwar. This brave people felt the irksomeness of their chains,
and wished to shake them off. Madho Singh’s reign was short; he was
succeeded by Partap, who determined to free himself from this badge of
dependence.[4.29.1] Accordingly, when Mahadaji Sindhia invaded his
country, at the head of a powerful army, he called on the Rathors for
aid. The cause was their own; and they jointly determined to redeem what
had been lost. As the bard of the Rathors observes, they [760] forgot
all their just grounds of offence[4.29.2] against the Jaipur court, and
sent the flower of their chivalry under the chieftain of Rian, whose
fidelity has been so recently recorded. At Tonga (the battle is also
termed that of Lalsot), the rival armies encountered. The celebrated
Mogul chiefs, Ismail Beg and Hamdani, added their forces to those of the
combined Rajputs, and gained an entire victory, in which the Rathors had
their full share of glory. The noble chief of Rian formed his Rathor
horse into a dense mass, with which he charged and overwhelmed the
flower of Sindhia’s army, composed of the regulars under the celebrated
De Boigne.[4.29.3] Sindhia was driven from the field, and retired to
Mathura; for years he did not recover the severity of this day. The
Rathors sent a force under the Dhaibhai, which redeemed Ajmer, and
annulled their tributary engagement.

=Battle of Pātan, June 20, 1790.=—The genius of General Comte de Boigne
ably seconded the energetic Sindhia. A regular force was equipped, far
superior to any hitherto known, and was led into Rajputana to redeem the
disgrace of Tonga. The warlike Rathors determined not to await the
attack within their own limits, but marched their whole force to the
northern frontier of Jaipur, and formed a junction with the Kachhwahas
at the town of Patan (_Tuarvati_).[4.29.4] The words of the war-song,
which the inspiring bards repeated as they advanced, are still current
in Marwar; but an unlucky stanza, which a juvenile Charan had composed
after the battle of Tonga, had completely alienated the Kachhwahas from
their supporters, to whom they could not but acknowledge their

                   _Ūdhalti Amber né rākhi Rāthorān._

         “The Rathors guarded the petticoats of Amber.”[4.29.5]

This stanza was retained in recollection at the battle of Patan; and if
universal [761] affirmation may be received as proof, it was the cause
of its loss, and with it that of Rajput independence. National pride was
humbled: a private agreement was entered into between the Mahrattas and
Jaipurians, whereby the latter, on condition of keeping aloof during the
fight, were to have their country secured from devastation. As usual,
the Rathors charged up to the muzzles of De Boigne’s cannon, sweeping
all before them: but receiving no support, they were torn piecemeal by
showers of grape and compelled to abandon the field. Then, it is
recorded, the brave Rathor showed the difference between fighting on
_parbhum_, or ‘foreign land,’ and on his own native soil. Even the
women, it is averred, plundered them of their horses on this disastrous
day; so heart-broken had the traitorous conduct of their allies rendered
them. The Jaipurians paid dearly for their revenge, and for the couplet
which recorded it:

                       _Ghoro, joro, pagri,
                       Mūcham Khag Mārwār,
                       Pānch rakam mel līdha
                       Pātan men Rāthor.[4.29.6]_


                     “Horse, shoes, turban,
                     Mustachio, sword [of] Marwar,
                     Five things surrendered were
                     At Patan by the Rathor.”

Both these “ribald strains” are still the taunt of either race: by such
base agencies are thrones overturned, and heroism rendered abortive!

When the fatal result of the battle of Patan was communicated to Raja
Bijai Singh, he called a council of all his nobles, at which the
independent branches of his family, the Rajas of Bikaner, Kishangarh,
and Rupnagarh, assisted, for the cause was a common one. The Raja gave
it as his own opinion, that it was better to fulfil the terms of the
former treaty, on the murder of Jai Apa, acknowledge the cancelled
tribute, and restore Ajmer, which they had recovered by a _coup de
main_. His valorous chieftains opposed the degrading suggestion, and
unanimously recommended that they should again try the chances of war
ere they signed their humiliation. Their resolution swayed the prince,
who issued his summons to every Rathor in his dominions to assemble
under their Raja’s banner, once more planted on the ensanguined plains
of Merta. A fine army was embodied; not a Rathor who could wield a sword
but brought it for service in the cause of his country; and full thirty
thousand men assembled on the 10th September 1790, determined to efface
the recollections of Patan [762].

=Battle of Merta, September 1790 A.D.=—There was one miscreant of Rathor
race, who aided on this occasion to rivet his country’s chains, and his
name shall be held up to execration—Bahadur Singh, the chief of
Kishangarh. This traitor to his suzerain and race held, jointly with his
brother of Rupnagarh, a domain of two hundred and ten townships: not a
fief emanating from Marwar, but all by grant from the kings; still they
received the _tika_, and acknowledged the supremacy of the head of
Jodhpur. The brothers had quarrelled; Bahadur despoiled his brother of
his share, and being deaf to all offers of mediation, Bijai Singh
marched and re-inducted the oppressed chief into his capital, Rupnagarh.
The fatal day of Patan occurred immediately after; and Bahadur, burning
with revenge, repaired to De Boigne, and conducted him against his
native land. Rupnagarh, it may be supposed, was his first object, and it
will afford a good proof of the efficiency of the artillery of De
Boigne, that he reduced it in twenty-four hours. Thence he proceeded to
Ajmer, which he invested: and here the proposal was made by the Raja for
its surrender, and for the fulfilment of the former treaty. Mahadaji in
person remained at Ajmer, while his army, led by Lakwa, Jiwa-dada,
Sudasheo Bhao, and other Mahratta leaders of horse, with the brigades of
De Boigne and eighty pieces of cannon, advanced against the Rathors. The
Mahrattas, preceding by one day’s march the regulars under De Boigne,
encamped at Natria. The Rathor army was drawn out on the plains of
Merta, one flank resting on the village of Dangiwas. Five miles
separated the Rathors from the Mahrattas; De Boigne was yet in the rear,
his guns being deep sunk in the sandy bed of the Luni. Here a golden
opportunity was lost, which could never be regained, of deciding ‘horse
to horse’ the claims of supremacy; but the evil genius of the Rathor
again intervened: and as he was the victim at Patan to the jealousy of
the Kachhwaha, so here he became the martyr to a meaner cause, the
household jealousies of the civil ministers of his prince. It is
customary in all the Rajput States, when the sovereign does not command
in person, to send one of the civil ministers as his representative. Him
the feudal chiefs will obey, but not one of their own body, at least
without some hazard of dissension. Khub Chand Singwi, the first
minister, was present with the Raja at the capital: Gangaram Bhandari
and Bhimraj Singwi were with the army. Eager to efface the disgrace of
Patan, the two great Rathor leaders, Sheo Singh of Awa, and Mahidas of
Asop, who had sworn to free their country or die in the [763] attempt,
demanded a general movement against the Mahrattas. This gallant
impatience was seconded by all the other nobles, as well as by a
successful attack on the foragers of the enemy, in which the Mahrattas
lost all their cattle. But it was in vain they urged the raging ardour
of their clans, the policy of taking advantage of it, and the absence of
De Boigne, owing to whose admirable corps and well-appointed park the
day at Patan was lost; Bhimraj silenced their clamour for the combat by
producing a paper from the minister Khub Chand commanding them on their
allegiance not to engage until the junction of Ismail Beg, already at
Nagor. They fatally yielded obedience. De Boigne extricated his guns
from the sands of Alniawas, and joined the main body. That night the
Bikaner contingent, perceiving the state of things, and desirous to
husband their resources to defend their own altars, withdrew. About an
hour before day-break, De Boigne led his brigade to the attack, and
completely surprised the unguarded Rajputs.[4.29.7] They were awoke by
showers of grape-shot, which soon broke their position: all was
confusion; the resistance was feeble. It was the camp of the irregular
infantry and guns which broke, and endeavoured to gain Merta; and the
civil commanders took to flight. The alarm reached the more distant
quarters of the brothers-in-arms, the chiefs of Awa and Asop. The latter
was famed for the immense quantity of opium he consumed; and with
difficulty could his companion awake him, with the appalling tidings,
“The camp has fled, and we are left alone!” “Well, brother, let us to
horse.” Soon the gallant band of both was ready, and twenty-two chiefs
of note drank opium together for the last time. They were joined by the
leaders of other clans; and first and foremost the brave Mertias of
Rian, of Alniawas, Irwa, Chanod, Govindgarh; in all four thousand
Rathors. When mounted and formed in one dense mass, the Awa chieftain
shortly addressed them: “Where can we fly, brothers? But can there be a
Rathor who has ties stronger than shame (_laj_)? If any one exist who
prefers his wife and children to honour, let him retire.” Deep silence
was the only reply to this heroic appeal; and as the hand of each
warrior was raised to his forehead, the Awa chief gave the word
“Forward!” They soon came up with De Boigne’s brigade, well posted, and
defended by eighty pieces of cannon. “Remember Patan!” was the cry, as,
regardless of showers of grape, this heroic band charged up to the
cannon’s mouth, driving everything before them, cutting [764] down the
line which defended the guns, and passing on to assault the Mahrattas,
who were flying in all directions to avoid their impetuous valour. Had
there been a reserve at this moment, the day of Merta would have
surpassed that of Tonga. But here the skill of De Boigne, and the
discipline of his troops, were an overmatch for valour unsustained by
discipline and discretion. The Rathor band had no infantry to secure
their victory; the guns were wheeled round, the line was re-formed, and
ready to receive them on their return. Fresh showers of shot and grape
met their thinned ranks; scarcely one of the four thousand left the
field. The chiefs of Asop, Irwa, Chanod, Govindgarh, Alniawas, Morira,
and others of lesser note, were among the slain; and upon the heaps of
wounded, surrounded by his gallant clan, lay the chief of Awa, pierced
with seven-and-twenty wounds. He had lain insensible twenty-four hours,
when an old servant, during the night, searched for and found him on the
field. A heavy shower had fallen, which increased the miseries of the
wounded. Blind and faint, the Thakur was dragged out from the bodies of
the slain. A little opiate revived him; and they were carrying him off,
when they were encountered by Lakwa’s harkaras in search of chiefs of
note; the wounded Thakur was conveyed to the headquarters at Merta.
Lakwa sent a surgeon to sew up his wounds; but he disdained the
courtesy, and refused all aid, until the meanest of his wounded vassals
was attended to. This brave man, when sufficiently recovered, refused
all solicitation from his sympathizing foes that the usual rejoicing
might be permitted, and that he would shave and perform the ablutions
after sickness, till he could see his sovereign. The Raja advanced from
his capital to meet him, and lavished encomiums on his conduct. He now
took the bath, preparatory to putting on the honorary dress; but in
bathing his wounds opened afresh, and he expired.

Bhimraj Singwi received at Nagor, whither he had fled, a letter of
accusation from his sovereign, on which he swallowed poison; but
although he was indirectly the cause of the defeat, by his supineness,
and subsequent disgraceful flight, it was the minister at the capital
whose treason prevented the destruction of the Mahrattas: Khub Chand was
jealous of Bhimraj; he dreaded being supplanted by him if he returned
from Merta crowned with success; and he therefore penned the dispatch
which paralysed their energies, enjoining them to await the junction of
Ismail Beg [765].

Thus, owing to a scurrilous couplet of a bard, and to the jealousy of a
contemptible court-faction, did the valiant Rathors lose their
independence—if it can be called lost—since each of these brave men
still deems himself a host, when “his hour should come” to play the
hero. Their spirit is not one jot diminished since the days of Tonga and

=British Policy towards the Rajputs.=—By a careful investigation of the
circumstances which placed those brave races in their present political
position, the paramount protecting power may be enabled to appreciate
them, either as allies or as foes; and it will demonstrate more
effectually than mere opinions, from whatever source, how admirably
qualified they are, if divested of control, to harmonize, in a very
important respect, with the British system of government in the East. We
have nothing to dread from them, individually or collectively; and we
may engage their very hearts’ blood in our cause against whatever foes
may threaten us, foreign or domestic, if we only exert our interference
when mediation will be of advantage to them, without offence to [766]
their prejudices. Nor is there any difficulty in the task; all honour
the peacemaker, and they would court even arbitration if once assured
that we had no ulterior views. But our strides have been rapid from
Calcutta to Rajputana, and it were well if they credit what the old
Nestor of India (Zalim Singh of Kotah) would not, who, in reply to all
my asseverations that we wished for no more territory, said, “I believe
you think so; but the time will come when there will be but one
_sikka_[4.29.9] throughout India. You stepped in, Maharaj, at a lucky
time, the _phut_[4.29.10] was ripe and ready to be eaten, and you had
only to take it bit by bit. It was not your power, so much as our
disunion, which made you sovereigns, and will keep you so.” His
reasoning is not unworthy of attention, though I trust his prophecy may
never be fulfilled.

=Jharāu.=—_November 28._—Camp at Jharau, five coss (11 miles). On
leaving Merta, we passed over the ground sacred to “the four thousand,”
whose heroic deeds, demonstrating at once the Rajput’s love of freedom
and his claim to it, we have just related. We this day altered our
course from the N.N.E., which would have carried us, had we pursued it,
to the Imperial city, for a direction to the southward of east, in order
to cross our own Aravalli and gain Ajmer. The road was excellent, the
soil very fair; but though there were symptoms of cultivation near the
villages, the wastes were frightfully predominant; yet they are not void
of vegetation: there is no want of herbage or stunted shrubs. The
Aravalli towered majestically in the distant horizon, fading from our
view towards the south-east, and intercepted by rising grounds.

=The Mirage.=—We had a magnificent mirage this morning: nor do I ever
recollect observing this singularly grand phenomenon on a more extensive
scale, or with greater variety of form. The morning was desperately
cold; the thermometer, as I mounted my horse, a little after sunrise,
stood at 32°, the freezing-point, with a sharp biting wind from the
north-east. The ground was blanched with frost, and the water-skins, or
_bihishtis mashaks_, were covered with ice at the mouth. The slender
shrubs, especially the milky _ak_, were completely burnt up; and as the
weather had been hitherto mild, the transition was severely felt, by
things animate and inanimate [767].

It is only in the cold season that the mirage is visible; the sojourners
of Maru call it the _siya-kot_, or ‘castles in the air.’[4.29.11] In the
deep desert to the westward, the herdsmen and travellers through these
regions style it _chitram_, ‘the picture’; while about the plains of the
Chambal and Jumna they term it _disasul_, ‘the omen of the quarter.’
This optical deception has been noticed from the remotest times. The
prophet Isaiah alludes to it when he says, “and the parched ground shall
become a pool”;[4.29.12] which the critic has justly rendered, “and the
_shārāb_h[4.29.13] shall become real water.” Quintus Curtius, describing
the mirage in the Sogdian desert, says that “for the space of four
hundred furlongs not a drop of water is to be found, and the sun’s heat,
being very vehement in summer, kindles such a fire in the sands, that
everything is burnt up. There also arises such an exhalation, that the
plains wear the appearance of a vast and deep sea”; which is an exact
description of the _chitram_ of the Indian desert. But the _shārābh_ and
_chitram_, the true mirage of Isaiah, differ from that illusion called
the _siya-kot_; and though the traveller will hasten to it, in order to
obtain a night’s lodging, I do not think he would expect to slake his
thirst there.

When we witnessed this phenomenon at first, the eye was attracted by a
lofty opaque wall of lurid smoke, which seemed to be bounded by, or to
rise from, the very verge of the horizon. By slow degrees the dense mass
became more transparent, and assumed a reflecting or refracting power:
shrubs were magnified into trees; the dwarf _khair_ appeared ten times
larger than the gigantic _amli_ of the forest. A ray of light suddenly
broke the line of continuity of this yet smoky barrier; and, as if
touched by the enchanter’s wand, castles, towers, and trees were seen in
an aggregated cluster, partly obscured by magnificent foliage. Every
accession of light produced a change in the _chitram_, which from the
dense wall that it first exhibited had now faded into a thin transparent
film, broken into a thousand masses, each mass being a huge lens; until
at length the [768] too vivid power of the sun dissolved the vision:
castles, towers, and foliage melted, like the enchantment of Prospero,
into “thin air.”

I had long imagined that the nature of the soil had some effect in
producing this illusory phenomenon; especially as the _chitram_ of the
desert is seen chiefly on those extensive plains productive of the
_sajji_, or alkaline plant, whence by incineration the natives produce
soda,[4.29.14] and whose base is now known to be metallic. But I have
since observed it on every kind of soil. That these lands, covered with
saline incrustations, tend to increase the effect of the illusion, may
be concluded.[4.29.15] But the difference between the _sarāb_ or
_chitram_, and the _siya-kot_ or _disasul_ is, that the latter is never
visible but in the cold season, when the gross vapours cannot rise; and
that the rarefaction, which gives existence to the other, destroys this,
whenever the sun has attained 20° of elevation. A high wind is alike
adverse to the phenomenon, and it will mostly be observed that it covets
shelter, and its general appearance is a long line which is sure to be
sustained by some height, such as a grove or village, as if it required
support. The first time I observed it was in the Jaipur country; none of
the party had ever witnessed it in the British provinces. It appeared
like an immense walled town with bastions, nor could we give credit to
our guides, when they talked of the _siya-kot_, and assured us that the
objects were merely “castles in the air.” I have since seen, though but
once, this panoramic scene in motion, and nothing can be imagined more

It was at Kotah, just as the sun rose, whilst walking on the terraced
roof of the garden-house, my residence. As I looked towards the low
range which bounds the sight to the south-east, the hills appeared in
motion, sweeping with an undulating or rotatory movement along the
horizon. Trees and buildings were magnified, and all seemed a kind of
enchantment. Some minutes elapsed before I could account for this
wonder; until I determined that it must be the masses of a floating
mirage, which had attained its most attenuated form, and being carried
by a gentle current of air past the tops and sides of the hills, while
it was itself imperceptible, made them appear in motion.

But although this was novel and pleasing, it wanted the splendour of the
scene of this morning, which I never saw equalled but once. This
occurred at Hissar, where I went to visit a beloved friend—gone, alas!
to a better world [769],—whose ardent and honourable mind urged me to
the task I have undertaken. It was on the terrace of James Lumsdaine’s
house, built amidst the ruins of the castle of Firoz, in the centre of
one extended waste, where the lion was the sole inhabitant, that I saw
the most perfect specimen of this phenomenon: it was really sublime. Let
the reader fancy himself in the midst of a desert plain, with nothing to
impede the wide scope of vision, his horizon bounded by a lofty black
wall encompassing him on all sides. Let him watch the first sunbeam
break upon this barrier, and at once, as by a touch of magic, shiver it
into a thousand fantastic forms, leaving a splintered pinnacle in one
place, a tower in another, an arch in a third; these in turn undergoing
more than kaleidoscopic changes, until the “fairy fabric” vanishes. Here
it was emphatically called Harchand Raja ki puri, or ‘the city of Raja
Harchand,’ a celebrated prince of the brazen age of India.[4.29.16] The
power of reflection shown by this phenomenon cannot be better described
than by stating that it brought the very ancient Agroha,[4.29.17] which
is thirteen miles distant, with its fort and bastions, close to my view.

The difference then between the mirage and the _siya-kot_ is, that the
former exhibits a horizontal, the latter a columnar or vertical
stratification; and in the latter case, likewise, a contrast to the
other, its maximum of translucency is the last stage of its existence.
In this stage, it is only an eye accustomed to the phenomenon that can
perceive it at all. I have passed over the plains of Meerut with a
friend who had been thirty years in India, and he did not observe a
_siya-kot_ then before our eyes: in fact so complete was the illusion,
that we only saw the town and fort considerably nearer. Monge gives a
philosophical account of this phenomenon in Napoleon’s campaign in
Egypt; and Dr. Clarke perfectly describes it in his journey to Rosetta,
when “domes, turrets, and groves were seen reflected on the glowing
surface of the plain, which appeared like a vast lake extending itself
between the city and travellers.” It is on reviewing this account that a
critic has corrected the erroneous translation of the Septuagint; and
further dilated upon it in a review of Lichtenstein’s travels in
Southern Africa,[4.29.18] who exactly describes our _siya-kot_, of the
magnifying and reflecting powers of which he gives a [770] singular
instance. Indeed, whoever notices, while at sea, the atmospheric
phenomena of these southern latitudes, will be struck by the deformity
of objects as they pass through this medium: what the sailors term a
fog-bank is the first stage of our _siya-kot_. I observed it on my
voyage home; but more especially in the passage out. About six o’clock
on a dark evening, while we were dancing on the waste, I perceived a
ship bearing down with full sail upon us so distinctly, that I gave the
alarm, in expectation of a collision; so far as I recollect, the helm
was instantly up, and in a second no ship was to be seen. The laugh was
against me—I had seen the “flying Dutchman,”[4.29.19] according to the
opinion of the experienced officer on deck; and I believed it was really
a vision of the mind: but I now feel convinced it was either the
reflection of our own ship in a passing cloud of this vapour, or a more
distant object therein refracted. But enough of this subject: I will
only add, whoever has a desire to see one of the grandest phenomena in
nature, let him repair to the plains of Merta or Hissar, and watch
before the sun rises the fairy palace of Harchand, infinitely grander
and more imposing than a sunrise upon the alpine Helvetia, which alone
may compete with the _chitram_ of the desert.

=Cenotaph of a Thākur.=—Jharau is a thriving village appertaining to a
sub-vassal of the Mertia chief of Rian. There was a small sheet of water
within a musket-shot to the left of the village, on whose margin,
peeping through a few nims and the evergreen jhal,[4.29.20] was erected
an elegant, though small _chhatri_, or cenotaph, of an ancestor of the
possessor. The Thakur is sculptured on his charger, armed at all points;
and close beside him, with folded hands, upon the same stone, his
faithful partner, who accompanied the warrior to Indra’s abode. It bore
the following epitaph: “On the 2d Margsir, S. 1689 (A.D. 1633), Maharaja
Jaswant Singh attacked the enemy’s (Aurangzeb’s) army, in which battle
Thakur Harankarna Das, of the Mertia clan, was slain. To him was erected
this shrine, in the month of Margsir, S. 1697.”

Water from wells is about thirty-five cubits from the surface; the
strata as follows: four cubits of mixed sand and black earth; five of
kankar, or calcareous concretions; twenty of stiff clay and sand; six of
indurated clay, with particles of quartz and mica [771].

=Alniawās.=—_November 29._—Alniawas, five coss. Half-way, passed the
town of Rian, so often mentioned as the abode of the chief of the Mertia
clan. It is large and populous, and surrounded by a well-constructed
wall of the calcareous concrete already described, here called _morar_,
and which resists the action of the monsoon. The works have a most
judicious slope. The Thakur’s name is Badan Singh, one of the eight
great barons of Maru. The town still bears the name of _Sher Singh ka
Rian_, who so gallantly defended to the death the rights of his young
sovereign Ram Singh against his uncle. A beautiful landscape is seen
from the high ground on which the town stands, in the direction of the
mountains; the intermediate space being filled with large villages,
relieved by foliage, so unusual in these regions. Here I had a proof of
the audacity of the mountaineers of the Aravalli, in an inscription on a
cenotaph, which I copied: “On Monday the 3d Magh, S. 1835 (A.D. 1779),
Thakur Bhopal Singh fell at the foot of his walls, defending them
against the Mers, having first, with his own hand, in order to save her
honour, put his wife to death.”[4.29.21] Such were the Mers half a
century ago, and they had been increasing in boldness ever since. There
was scarcely a family on either side the range, whose estates lay at its
foot, whose cenotaphs do not bear similar inscriptions, recording the
desperate raids of these mountaineers; and it may be asserted that one
of the greatest benefits we conferred on Rajputana was the conversion of
this numerous banditti, occupying some hundred towns, into peaceful,
tax-paying subjects. We can say, with the great Chauhan king,
Bisiladeva, whose monument still stands in Firoz’s palace at Delhi, that
we made them “carry water in the streets of Ajmer”; and, still more,
deposit their arms on the Rana’s terrace at Udaipur. We have, moreover,
metamorphosed a corps of them from breakers, into keepers, of the public

Between Rian and Alniawas we crossed a stream, to which the name of the
Luni[4.29.22] is also given, as well as to that we passed subsequently.
It was here that De Boigne’s guns are said to have stuck fast.

The soundings of the wells at Rian and Alniawas presented the same
results as [772] at Jharau, with the important exception that the
substratum was steatite, which was so universal in the first part of my
journey from Jodhpur.

Alniawas is also a fief of a Mertia vassal. It is a considerable town,
populous, and apparently in easy circumstances. Here again I observed a
trait of devotion, recorded on an altar “to the memory of Suni Mall,”
who fell when his clan was exterminated in the charge against the rival
Champawats, at Merta, in the civil wars.

=Govindgarh.=—_November 30._—Govindgarh, distance three coss, or six
miles. The roads generally good, though sometimes heavy; the soil of a
lighter texture than yesterday. The castle and town of Govinda belong to
a feudatory of the Jodha clan; its founder, Govind, was grandson to Udai
_le gros_; or, as Akbar dubbed him, the “Mota Raja,” from his great
bulk. Of this clan is the chief of Khairwa, having sixteen townships in
his fief: Banai, and Masuda, with its “fifty-two townships,” both now in
Ajmer; having for their present suzerain the “Sarkar Company Bahadur”;
though in lapses they will still go to Jodhpur, to be made “belted
knights.” These places are beyond the range; but Pisangan, with its
twelve villages; Bijathal, and other fiefs west of it, also in Ajmer,
might at all events be restored to their ancient princes, which would be
considered as a great boon. There would be local prepossessions to
contend with, on the part of the British officers in charge of the
district; but such objections must give way to views of general good.

=Fox-hunting: Hyaenas.=—This was another desperately cold morning; being
unprovided with a great-coat, I turned the _dagla_, or ‘quilted brocade
tunic,’ sent me by the high priest of Kanhaiya, to account. We had some
capital runs this morning with the foxes of Maru, which are beautiful
little animals, and larger than those of the provinces. I had a
desperate chase after a hyaena on the banks of the Luni, and had fully
the speed of him; but his topographical knowledge was too much for me,
and he at length led me through a little forest of reeds or rushes, with
which the banks of the river are covered for a great depth. Just as I
was about giving him a spear, in spite of these obstacles, we came upon
a blind nullah or ‘dry rivulet,’ concealed by the reeds; and Bajraj (the
royal steed) was thrown out, with a wrench in the shoulder, in the
attempt to clear it: the _jhirak_ laughed at us.

We crossed a stream half a mile west of Govindgarh, called the Sagarmati
[773], which, with another, the Sarasvati, joining it, issues from the
Pushkar lake. The Sagarmati is also called the Luni; its bed is full of
micaceous quartzose rock. The banks are low, and little above the level
of the country. Though water is found at a depth of twelve cubits from
the surface, the wells are all excavated to the depth of forty, as a
precautionary measure against dry seasons. The stratification here
was—one cubit sand; three of sand and soil mixed; fifteen to twenty of
yellow clayish sand; four of morar, and fifteen of steatite and
calcareous concretions, with loose sand, mixed with particles of quartz.

=Pushkar Lake.=—_December 1._—Lake of Pushkar, four coss: the
thermometer stood at the freezing-point this morning:—heavy sands the
whole way. Crossed the Sarasvati near Nand; its banks were covered
with bulrushes, at least ten feet in height—many vehicles were lading
with them for the interior, to be used for the purposes of
thatching—elephants make a feast among them. We again crossed the
Sarasvati, at the entrance of the valley of Pushkar, which comes from
Old (_burha_) Pushkar, four miles east of the present lake, which was
excavated by the last of the Pariharas of Mandor. The sand drifted
from the plains by the currents of air has formed a complete bar at
the mouth of the valley, which is about one mile in breadth;
occasionally the _tibas_, or sand-hills, are of considerable
elevation. The summits of the mountains to the left were sparkling
with a deep rose-coloured quartz, amidst which, on the peak of Nand,
arose a shrine to ‘the Mother.’ The hills preserve the same character:
bold pinnacles, abrupt sides, and surface thinly covered. The
stratification inclines to the west; the dip of the strata is about
twenty degrees. There is, however, a considerable difference in the
colour of the mountains: those on the left have a rose tint; those on
the right are of greyish granite, with masses of white quartz about
their summits.

Pushkar is the most sacred lake in India; that of Mansarovar in Tibet
may alone compete with it in this respect. It is placed in the centre of
the valley, which here becomes wider, and affords abundant space for the
numerous shrines and cenotaphs with which the hopes and fears of the
virtuous and the wicked amongst the magnates of India have studded its
margin. It is surrounded by sand-hills of considerable magnitude,
excepting on the east, where a swamp extends to the very base of the
mountains. The form of the lake may be called an irregular ellipse.
Around its margin, except towards the marshy outlet, is a display of
[774] varied architecture. Every Hindu family of rank has its niche
here, for the purposes of devotional pursuits when they could abstract
themselves from mundane affairs. The most conspicuous are those erected
by Raja Man of Jaipur, Ahalya Bai, the Holkar queen, Jawahir Mall of
Bharatpur, and Bijai Singh of Marwar. The cenotaphs are also numerous.
The ashes of Jai Apa, who was assassinated at Nagor, are superbly
covered; as are those of his brother Santaji, who was killed during the
siege of that place.

=The Brahma Temple.=—By far the most conspicuous edifice is the shrine
of the creator Brahma, erected, about four years ago, by a private
individual, if we may so designate Gokul Parik, the minister of Sindhia;
it cost the sum of 130,000 rupees (about £15,000), though all the
materials were at hand, and labour could be had for almost nothing. This
is the sole tabernacle dedicated to the ONE GOD which I ever saw or have
heard of in India.[4.29.23] The statue is quadrifrons; and what struck
me as not a little curious was that the _sikhar_, or pinnacle of the
temple, is surmounted by a cross. Tradition was here again at work.
Before creation began, Brahma assembled all the celestials on this very
spot, and performed the _Yajna_; around the hallowed spot walls were
raised, and sentinels placed to guard it from the intrusion of the evil
spirits. In testimony of the fact, the natives point out the four
isolated mountains, placed towards the cardinal points, beyond the lake,
on which, they assert, rested the _kanats_, or cloth-walls of inclosure.
That to the south is called Ratnagir, or ‘the hill of gems,’ on the
summit of which is the shrine of Savitri. That to the north is Nilagir,
or ‘the blue mountain.’ East, and guarding the valley, is the
Kuchhaturgir; and to the west, Sonachaura, or ‘the golden.’ Nandi, the
bull-steed of Mahadeva, was placed at the mouth of the valley, to keep
away the spirits of the desert; while Kanhaiya himself performed this
office to the north. The sacred fire was kindled: but Savitri, the wife
of Brahma, was nowhere to be found, and as without a female the rites
could not proceed, a young Gujari took the place of Savitri; who, on her
return, was so enraged at the indignity, that she retired to the
mountain of gems, where she disappeared. On this spot a fountain gushed
up, still called by her name; close to which is her shrine, not the
least attractive in the precincts of Pushkar. During these rites,
Mahadeva, or, as he is called, Bholanath, represented always in a state
of stupefaction from the use of intoxicating [775] herbs, omitted to put
out the sacred fire, which spread, and was likely to involve the world
in combustion; when Brahma extinguished it with the sand, and hence the
_tibas_ of the valley. Such is the origin of the sanctity of Pushkar. In
after ages, one of the sovereigns of Mandor, in the eagerness of the
chase, was led to the spot, and washing his hands in the fountain, was
cured of some disorder. That he might know the place again, he tore his
turban into shreds, and suspended the fragments to the trees, to serve
him as guides to the spot—there he made the excavation. The Brahmans
pretend to have a copper-plate grant from the Parihara prince of the
lands about Pushkar; but I was able to obtain only a Persian translation
of it, which I was heretical enough to disbelieve. I had many grants
brought me, written by various princes and chiefs, making provision for
the prayers of these recluses at their shrines.


  _To face page 892._

The name of Bisaladeva, the famed Chauhan king of Ajmer, is the most
conspicuous here; and they still point out the residence of his great
ancestor, Ajaipal, on the Nagpahar, or ‘serpent-rock,’ directly south of
the lake, where the remains of the fortress of the Pali or Shepherd-king
are yet visible. Ajaipal was, as his name implies, a goatherd, whose
piety, in supplying one of the saints of Pushkar with daily libations of
goats’ milk, procured him a territory. Satisfied, however, with the
scene of his early days, he commenced his castle on the serpent-mount;
but his evil genius knocking down in the night what he erected in the
day, he sought out another site on the opposite side of the range: hence
arose the far-famed Ajamer.[4.29.24] Manika Rae is the most conspicuous
connecting link of the Chauhan Pali kings, from the goatherd founder to
the famed Bisaladeva.[4.29.25] Manika was slain in the first century of
the Hijra, when “the arms of Walid conquered to the Ganges”; and
Bisaladeva headed a confederacy of the Hindu kings, and chased the
descendants of Mahmud from Hindustan, the origin of the recording column
at Delhi. Bisaladeva, it appears from inscriptions, was the contemporary
of Rawal Tejsi, the monarch of Chitor, and grandfather of the Ulysses of
Rajasthan, the brave Samarsi, who fell with 13,000 of his kindred in aid
of the last Chauhan Prithiraj, who, according to the genealogies of this
race, is the fourth in descent from Bisaladeva. If this is not
sufficient proof of the era of this king, be it known that Udayaditya,
the prince of the Pramaras (the period of [776] whose death, or A.D.
1096, has now become a datum),[4.29.26] is enumerated amongst the
sovereigns who serve under the banners of the Chauhan of Ajmer.

=Bhartrihari.=—The ‘serpent-rock’ is also famed as being one of the
places where the wandering Bhartrihari, prince of Ujjain, lived for
years in penitential devotion; and the slab which served as a seat to
this royal saint has become one of the objects of veneration. If all the
places assigned to this brother of Vikrama were really visited by him,
he must have been one of the greatest tourists of antiquity, and must
have lived to an antediluvian old age. Witness his castle at Sehwan, on
the Indus; his cave at Alwar; his _thans_ at Abu, and at Benares. We
must, in fact, give credit to the couplet of the bards, “the world is
the Pramara’s.” There are many beautiful spots about the serpent-mount,
which, as it abounds in springs, has from the earliest times been the
resort of the Hindu sages, whose caves and hermitages are yet pointed
out, now embellished with gardens and fountains. One of the latter
issuing from a fissure in the rock is sacred to the Muni Agastya, who
performed the very credible exploit of drinking up the ocean.

St. George’s banner waved on a sand-hill in front of the cross on
Brahma’s temple, from which my camp was separated by the lake; but
though there was no defect of legendary lore to amuse us, we longed to
quit “the region of death,” and hie back to our own lakes, our cutter,
and our gardens.

=Ajmer.=—_December 2._—Ajmer, three coss. Proceeded up the valley, where
lofty barriers on either side, covered with the milky thor
(_cactus_),[4.29.27] and the “yellow anwla of the border,” showed they
were but the prolongation of our own Aravalli. Granite appeared of every
hue, but of a stratification so irregular as to bid defiance to the
geologist. The higher we ascended the valley, the loftier became the
sand-hills, which appeared to aspire to the altitude of their granitic
neighbours. A small rill poured down the valley; there came also a cold
blast from the north, which made our fingers tingle. Suddenly we changed
our direction from north to east, and ascending the mountain, surveyed
through a gap in the range the far-famed Daru-I-Khair. The view which
thus suddenly burst upon us was magnificent. A noble plain, with trees,
and the expansive lake of Bisaladeva, lay at our feet, while ‘the
fortress of the goatherd’ crowned the crest of a majestic isolated hill.
The point of descent affords a fine field for the mineralogist; on [777]
each side, high over the pass, rise peaks of reddish granite, which are
discovered half-way down the descent to be reposing on a blue micaceous
slate, whose inclination is westward, at an angle of about 25° with the
horizon. The formation is the same to the southward, but the slate there
is more compact, and freer from mica and quartz. I picked up a fragment
of black marble; its crystals were large and brilliant.

Passed through the city of Ajmer, which, though long a regal abode, does
not display that magnificence we might have expected, and, like all
other towns of India, exhibits poverty and ease in juxtaposition. It was
gratifying to find that the finest part was rising, under the auspices
of the British Government and the superintendent of the province, Mr.
Wilder. The main street, when finished, will well answer the purpose
intended—a place of traffic for the sons of commerce of Rajasthan, who,
in a body, did me the honour of a visit: they were contented and happy
at the protection they enjoyed in their commercial pursuits. With the
prosperity of Bhilwara, that of Ajmer is materially connected; and
having no interests which can clash, each town views the welfare of the
other as its own: a sentiment which we do not fail to encourage.

Breakfasted with Mr. Wilder,[4.29.28] and consulted how we could best
promote our favourite objects—the prosperity of Ajmer and Bhilwara


Footnote 4.29.1:

  [Mādho Singh, A.D. 1760-78: Prithi Singh II. was succeeded within a
  year by Partāp Singh, 1778-1803.]

Footnote 4.29.2:

                           _Pat rakhi Partāp ki
                           No koti ka nāth.
                           Gunha agla bagasnē
                           Abē pakriyo hāth._

  “The lord of the nine castles preserved the honour of Partāp. He
  forgave former offences, and again took him by the hand.” [In the
  third line Major Luard’s Pandit reads _bakhas di_, ‘forgave.’]

Footnote 4.29.3:

  “A la gauche la cavalerie rhatore, au nombre de dix mille hommes,
  fondit sur les bataillons de M. de Boigne malgré le feu des batteries
  placées en avant de la ligne. Les pièces bien servies opéraient avec
  succès; mais les Rhatores, avec le courage opiniâtre qui les
  caractérise, s’acharnaient à poursuivre l’action, et venaient tuer les
  artilleurs jusques sur leurs pièces. Alors, les bataillons
  s’avancèrent, et les Rhatores, qui avaient perdu beaucoup de monde,
  commencèrent à s’ébranler. M. de Boigne, les voyant se retirer en
  désordre, réclama l’aide du centre; mais les prières et les menaces
  furent également inutiles: les vingt-cinq bataillons mogols, restés
  inactifs pendant toute la journée, et simples spectateurs du combat,
  demeurèrent encore immobiles dans ce moment décisif. Les deux armées
  se retirèrent après cette action sanglante, qui n’eut aucun résultat.”

Footnote 4.29.4:

  [There is some doubt about the exact date. Grant Duff (_Hist.
  Mahrattas_, 497) fixes it on June 20, 1790. See Erskine’s note (iii.
  A. 68), which is followed in the margin. For the battle see Compton,
  _Military Adventurers_, 51 ff.]

Footnote 4.29.5:

  [The translation in the text seems to be wrong. The best authorities
  translate: “But for the Rāthors Amber would have run away.”]

Footnote 4.29.6:

  [In this version the first and third lines do not scan. According to
  Dr. Tessitori, a better text runs:

                          _Ghoro, joro, pāgri,
                          Mūcham tāni maror,
                          Yān pānchām gun agli,
                          Rājpūti Rāthor._

Footnote 4.29.7:

  [See the graphic account in Keene, _Fall of the Mogul Empire_, 205 f.]

Footnote 4.29.8:

  Three years ago I passed two delightful days with the conqueror of the
  Rajputs, in his native vale of Chambéry. It was against the _croix
  blanche_ of Savoy, not the _orange flag_ of the Southron, that four
  thousand Rajputs fell martyrs to liberty; and although I wish the
  Comte long life, I may regret he had lived to bring his talents and
  his courage to their subjugation. He did them ample justice, and when
  I talked of the field of Merta, the remembrance of past days flitted
  before him, as he said “all appeared as a dream.” Distinguished by his
  prince, beloved by a numerous and amiable family, and honoured by his
  fellow-citizens, the years of the veteran, now numbering more than
  fourscore, glide in agreeable tranquillity in his native city, which,
  with oriental magnificence, he is beautifying by an entire new street
  and a handsome dwelling for himself. By a singular coincidence, just
  as I am writing this portion of my narrative I am put in possession of
  a _Mémoire_ of his life, lately published, written under the eye of
  his son, the Comte Charles de Boigne. From this I extract his account
  of the battle of Merta. It is not to be supposed that he could then
  have been acquainted with the secret intrigues which were arrayed in
  favour of the “white cross” on this fatal day.

  “Les forces des Rajepoutes se composaient de trente mille cavaliers,
  de vingt mille hommes d’infanterie régulière, et de vingt-cinq pièces
  de canon. Les Marhattes avaient une cavalerie égale en nombre à celle
  de l’ennemi, mais leur infanterie se bornait aux bataillons de M. de
  Boigne, soutenus, il est vrai, par quatre-vingts pièces d’artillerie.
  Le général examina la position de l’ennemi, il étudia le terrain et
  arrêta son plan de bataille.

  “Le dix, avant le jour, la brigade reçut l’ordre de marcher en avant,
  et elle surprit les Rajepoutes pendant qu’ils faisoient leurs
  ablutions du matin. Les premiers bataillons, avec cinquante pièces de
  canon tirant à mitraille, enfoncèrent les lignes de l’ennemi et
  enlevèrent ses positions. Rohan, qui commandait l’aile droite, à la
  vue de ce premier avantage, sans avoir reçu aucun ordre, eut
  l’imprudence de s’avancer hors de la ligne du combat, à la tête de
  trois bataillons. La cavalerie Rathore profitant de cette faute,
  fondit à l’instant sur lui et faillit lui couper sa retraite sur le
  gros de l’armée, qu’il ne parvint à rejoindre qu’avec les plus grandes
  difficultés. Toute la cavalerie ennemie se mit alors en mouvement, et
  se jetant avec impétuosité sur la brigade, l’attaqua sur tous les
  côtés à la fois. Elle eût été infailliblement exterminée sans la
  présence d’esprit de son chef. M. de Boigne, s’étant aperçu de
  l’erreur commise par son aile droite et prévoyant les suites qu’elle
  pouvait entraîner, avait disposé sur-le-champ son infanterie en carré
  vide (hollow square); et par cette disposition, présentant partout un
  front à l’ennemi, elle opposa une résistance invincible aux charges
  furieuses des Rathores, qui furent enfin forcés de lâcher prise.
  Aussitôt l’infanterie reprit ses positions, et s’avançant avec son
  artillerie, elle fit une attaque générale sur toute la ligne des
  Rajepoutes. Déjà sur les neuf heures, l’ennemi était complètement
  battu; une heure après, les Marhattes prirent possession de son camp
  avec tous ses canons et bagages; et pour couronner cette journée, à
  trois heures après midi la ville de Mirtah fut prise d’assaut”
  (_Mémoire sur la carrière militaire et politique de M. le Général
  Comte De Boigne_, _Chambéry_, 1829).

Footnote 4.29.9:

  [‘Seal,’ ‘coinage.’]

Footnote 4.29.10:

  _Phūt_ is a species of pumpkin, or melon, which bursts and flies into
  pieces when ripe. [_Cucumis mormodica_, Watt, _Comm. Prod._ 438 f.] It
  also means _disunion_; and Zalim Singh, who always spoke in parables,
  compared the States of India to this fruit.

Footnote 4.29.11:

  Literally, ‘the cold-weather castles.’

Footnote 4.29.12:

  Isaiah xxxv. 7.

Footnote 4.29.13:

  _Sahra_ is ‘desert’; Arabic _sarāb_, Hebrew _shārābh_, ‘the water of
  the desert,’ a term which the inhabitants of the Arabian and Persian
  deserts apply to this optical phenomenon. The 18th verse, chap. xli.
  of Isaiah is closer to the critic’s version: “I will make the
  wilderness (_sahra_) a pool of water.“ Doubtless the translators of
  Holy Writ, ignorant that this phenomenon was called _shārābh_, ‘water
  of the waste,’ deemed it a tautological error; for translated
  literally, “and the water of the desert shall become real water,”
  would be nonsense: they therefore lopped off the _āb_, water, and read
  _sahra_ instead of _shārābh_, whereby the whole force and beauty of
  the prophecy is not merely diminished, but lost. [The Author is
  mistaken, the words _shārābh_ and _sahra_ having no connexion. See
  _Encyclopaedia Biblica_, i. 1077. The mirage in Sanskrit is called
  _mrigatrish_, ‘deer’s thirst.’ Another name is _Gandharvapura_, ‘city
  of the heavenly choristers.’]

Footnote 4.29.14:

  Properly a carbonate of soda [barilla, Watt, _Econ. Prod._ 112 f.].

Footnote 4.29.15:

  [Mirage is due to variations in the refractive index of the
  atmosphere, caused by sporadic variations of temperature (_EB_, 11th
  ed. xviii. 573).]

Footnote 4.29.16:

  [For the tale of the sufferings of the righteous Harischandra see J.
  Muir, _Original Sanskrit Texts_, i. 88 ff.; Dowson, _Classical Dict._
  _s.v._ For the mirage city compare “The City of Brass” (Burton,
  _Arabian Nights_, iii. 295).]

Footnote 4.29.17:

  This is in the ancient province of Hariana, and the cradle of the
  Agarwal race, now mercantile, and all followers of Hari or Vishnu. It
  might have been the capital of Aggrames, whose immense army threatened
  Alexander; with Agra it may divide the honour, or both may have been
  founded by this prince, who was also a Porus, being of Puru’s race.
  [For Xandrames or Aggrames see Smith, _EHI_, 40; McCrindle,
  _Alexander_, 409. His capital is supposed to have been Pātaliputra,
  the modern Patna.]

Footnote 4.29.18:

  See _Edinburgh Review_, vol. xxi. pp. 66 and 138.

Footnote 4.29.19:

  This phenomenon is not uncommon; and the superstitious sailor believes
  it to be the spectre of a Dutch pirate, doomed, as a warning and
  punishment, to migrate about these seas.

Footnote 4.29.20:

  [_Jhāl_, _Salvadora persica._]

Footnote 4.29.21:

  A second inscription recorded a similar end of Sewa, the Baori, who
  fell in another inroad of the Mers, in S. 1831.

Footnote 4.29.22:

  I must deprecate criticism in respect to many of my geographical
  details. I find I have omitted this branch; but my health totally
  incapacitated me from reconstructing my map, which has been composed
  by the engraver from my disjointed materials. It is well known to all
  practical surveyors and geographers that none can do this properly but
  their author, who knows the precise value of each portion. [It is the
  main stream of the Lūni river.]

Footnote 4.29.23:

  [At least three other temples of Brahma are known: at Khed Brahma in
  Mahikāntha (_BG_, v. 437 f.); Cebrolu and Māla in S. India (Oppert,
  _Original Inhabitants of Bharatavarsa_, 288 ff.). The Author mentions
  one at Chitor (Vol. I. p. 322).]

Footnote 4.29.24:

  [“The name probably suggested the myth [that he was a goatherd,
  Ajapāla = ‘goatherd’], and it is more reasonable to suppose that the
  appellation was given to him when, at the close of his life, he became
  a hermit, and ended his days at the gorge in the hills about ten miles
  from Ajmer, which is still venerated as the shrine of Ajaipāl. It has
  been shown, however, by more recent research that Aja or Ajāya
  flourished about A.D. 1000, and that the foundation of Ajmer must be
  attributed to this period” (Watson, _Gazetteer_, i. A. 9).]

Footnote 4.29.25:

  Classically, Visaladeva. [Cunningham remarks that the date of Manik
  Rāē is fixed by a memorial verse in Sambat 741 or 747, but of what era
  is uncertain. Tod adopts the Vikrama era, and fixes his date twenty
  years before the invasion of Muhammad bin Kāsim, A.D. 712. He seems to
  have reigned in the beginning of the ninth century (_ASR_, ii. 253).
  Visaladeva lived in the middle of the twelfth century (Smith, _EHI_,
  386). Tej Singh is mentioned in inscriptions A.D. 1260-67 (Erskine ii.
  B. 10).]

Footnote 4.29.26:

  See _Transactions of the Royal Asiatic Society_, vol. i. p. 223.

Footnote 4.29.27:

  [_Euphorbia neriifolia._]

Footnote 4.29.28:

  [Mr. Wilder was in charge of Ajmer, 1818-24.]


                               CHAPTER 30

=Ajmer.=—Ajmer has been too long the haunt of Moguls and Pathans, the
Goths and Vandals of Rajasthan, to afford much scope to the researches
of the antiquary. Whatever time had spared of the hallowed relics of
old, bigotry has destroyed, or raised to herself altars of materials,
whose sculptured fragments serve now as disjointed memorials of two
distinct and distant eras: that of the independent Hindu, and that of
the conquering Muhammadan, whose idgahs and mosques, mausoleums and
country-seats, constructed from the wrecks of aboriginal art, are fast
mouldering to decay. The associations they call forth afford the only
motive to wish their preservation; except one “relic of nobler days and
noblest arts,” which, though impressed with this double character, every
spectator must desire to rescue from the sweeping sentence—the edifice
before the reader, a visit to which excited these reflections. Let us
rather bless than execrate the hand, though it be that of a Turk, which
has spared, from whatever motive, one of the most perfect, as well as
the most ancient, monuments of Hindu architecture. It is built on the
western declivity of the fortress, and called Arhai din ka jhonpra, or,
‘the shed of two and a half days,’ from its having occupied (as
tradition tells) its magical builders only this short period. The skill
of the Pali or Takshak architect, the three sacred mounts of these
countries abundantly attest: nor had he occasion for any mysterious
arts, besides those of masonry, to accomplish them. In discussing the
cosmogony of the Hindus, we have had occasion to convert their years
into days; here we must reverse the method, and understand (as in [779]
interpreting the sacred prophecies of Scripture) their days as meaning
years. Had it, indeed, been of more humble pretensions, we might have
supposed the monotheistic Jain had borrowed from the Athenian legislator
Cecrops, who ordained that no tomb should consist of more work than ten
men could finish in three days; to which Demetrius, the Phalerian,
sanctioned the addition of a little vessel to contain the ghost’s


  _To face page 896._

=Arhāi din ka jhonpra Mosque.=—The temple is surrounded by a superb
screen of Saracenic architecture, having the main front and gateway to
the north. From its simplicity, as well as its appearance of antiquity,
I am inclined to assign the screen to the first dynasty, the Ghorian
sultans, who evidently made use of native architects. The entrance arch
is of that wavy kind, characteristic of what is termed the Saracenic,
whether the term be applied to the Alhambra of Spain, or the mosques of
Delhi; and I am disposed, on close examination, to pronounce it
Hindu.[4.30.2] The entire façade of this noble entrance, which I regret
I cannot have engraved, is covered with Arabic inscriptions. But, unless
my eyes much deceived me, the small frieze over the apex of the arch
contained an inscription in Sanskrit,[4.30.3] with which Arabic has been
commingled, both being unintelligible. The remains of a minaret still
maintain their position on the right flank of the gate, with a door and
steps leading to it for the muazzin to call the faithful to prayers. A
line of smaller arches of similar form composes the front of the screen.
The design is chaste and beautiful, and the material, which is a compact
limestone of a yellow colour, admitting almost of as high a polish as
the _jaune antique_, gave abundant scope to the sculptor. After
confessing and admiring the taste of the Vandal architect, we passed
under the arch to examine the more noble production of the Hindu. Its
plan is simple, and consonant with all the more ancient temples of the
Jains. It is an extensive saloon, the ceiling supported by a quadruple
range of columns, those of the centre being surmounted by a range of
vaulted coverings; while the lateral portion, which is flat, is divided
into compartments of the most elaborate sculpture. But the columns are
most worthy of attention; they are unique in design, and with the
exception of the cave-temples, probably amongst the oldest now existing
in India. On examining them, ideas entirely novel, even in Hindu [780]
art, are developed. Like all these portions of Hindu architecture, their
ornaments are very complex, and the observer will not fail to be struck
with their dissimilarity; it was evidently a rule in the art to make the
ornaments of every part unlike the other, and which I have seen carried
to great extent. There may be forty columns but no two are alike. The
ornaments of the base are peculiar, both as to form and execution; the
lozenges, with the rich tracery surmounting them, might be transferred,
not inappropriately, to the Gothic cathedrals of Europe. The projections
from various parts of the shaft (which on a small scale may be compared
to the corresponding projections of the columns in the Duomo at Milan),
with the small niches still containing the statues, though occasionally
mutilated, of the Pontiffs of the Jains, give them a character which
strengthens the comparison, and which would be yet more apparent if we
could afford to engrave the details.[4.30.4] The elegant Kamakumbha, the
emblem of the Hindu Ceres, with its pendent palmyra-branches, is here
lost, as are many emblematical ornaments, curious in design and elegant
in their execution. Here and there occurs a richly carved corbeille,
which still further sustains the analogy between the two systems of
architecture; and the capitals are at once strong and delicate. The
central vault, which is the largest, is constructed after the same
fashion as that described at Nadol; but the concentric annulets, which
in that are plain, in this are one blaze of ornaments, which with the
whole of the ceiling is too elaborate and complicated for description.
Under the most retired of the compartments, and nearly about the centre,
is raised the mimbar, or pulpit, whence the Mulla enunciates the dogma
of Muhammad, “there is but one God”: and for which he dispossessed the
Jain, whose creed was like his own, the unity of the Godhead. But this
is in unison with the feeling which dictated the external metamorphosis.
The whole is of the same materials as already described, from the
quarries of the Aravalli close at hand, which are rich in every mineral
as well as metallic production:—

       I ask’d of _Time_ for whom _those_ temples rose,
       That prostrate by his hand in silence lie;
       His lips disdain’d the myst’ry to disclose,
       And borne on swifter wing, he hurried by!
       The broken columns _whose_? I ask’d of _Fame_:
       (Her kindling breath gives life to works sublime;)
       With downcast looks of mingled grief and shame,
       She heaved the uncertain sigh, and follow’d _Time_ [781].
       Wrapt in amazement o’er the mouldering pile,
       I saw _Oblivion_ pass with giant stride;
       And while his visage wore _Pride’s_ scornful smile,
       Haply _thou know’st_, then tell me, _whose_ I cried,
       _Whose_ these vast domes that ev’n in ruin shine?
       I _reck not whose_, he said: they _now are mine_.

Shall we abandon them to cold ‘oblivion’; or restore them to a name
already mentioned, Samprati, or Swampriti, the Shah Jahan[4.30.5] of a
period two centuries before the Christian era, and to whom the shrine in
Kumbhalmer is ascribed? Of one thing there is no doubt, which is, that
both are Jain, and of the most ancient models: and thus advertised, the
antiquary will be able to discriminate between the architectural systems
of the Saivas and the Jains, which are as distinct as their religions.

Having alluded to the analogy between the details in the columns and
those in our Gothic buildings (as they are called), and surmised that
the Saracenic arch is of Hindu origin; I may further, with this temple
and screen before us, speculate on the possibility of its having
furnished some hints to the architects of Europe. It is well known that
the Saracenic arch has crept into many of those structures called
Gothic, erected in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, when a more
florid style succeeded to the severity of the Saxon or Romans; but I
believe it has been doubted whence the Saracens obtained their model;
certainly it was neither from Egypt nor Persia. The early caliphs of
Baghdad, who were as enlightened as they were powerful, kept alive the
light of science when Europe was in darkness; and the most accomplished
noble who accompanied our Cœur de Lion, though “brave as his sword,”
was a clown compared to the infidel Saladin, in mind as well as manners.
The influence of these polished foes on European society it would be
superfluous to descant upon. The lieutenants of these caliphs, who
penetrated from the Delta of the Indus to the Ganges from four to five
centuries prior to this event, when Walid’s arms triumphed
simultaneously on the Indus and the Ebro, produced no trifling results
to the arts. This very spot, Ajmer, according to traditional couplets
and the poetic legends of its ancient princes, the Chauhans, was visited
by the first hostile force which Islam sent across the Indus, and to
which Manika Rae fell a sacrifice. What ideas might not this Jain temple
have afforded to [782] “the Light of Ali,” for Roshan Ali is the name
preserved of him who, “in ships landing at Anjar,” marched through the
very heart of India, and took Garh Bitli, the citadel of Ajmer, by
assault. The period is one of total darkness in the history of India,
save for the scattered and flickering rays which emanate from the
chronicles of the Chauhans and Guhilots. But let us leave the temple,
and slightly describe the castle of Manika Rae, on whose battlements an
infidel’s arrow of Roshan’s army reached the heir of the Chauhan; since
which Lot, for such was his name, has been adopted amongst the lares and
penates of this celebrated race. This was the first Rajput blood which
the arms of conversion shed, and the impression must have been strong to
be thus handed down to posterity.

The mind, after all, retires dissatisfied: with me it might be from
association. Even the gateway, however elegant, is unsuitable to the
genius of the place. Separately considered, they are each magnificent;
together, it is as if a modern sculptor were (like our actors of the
last age) to adorn the head of Cato with a peruke. I left this precious
relic, with a malediction upon all the spoilers of art—whether the Thane
who pillaged Minerva’s portico at Athens, or the Turk who dilapidated
the Jain temple at Ajmer.[4.30.6]


  _To face page 900._

=Ajmer Fort.=—The reader will see as much of this far-famed fortress as
I did: for there was nothing to induce me to climb the steep, where the
only temple visible was a modern-looking whitewashed mosque, lifting its
dazzling minarets over the dingy antique towers of the Chauhan: “he who
seven times captured the sultan, and seven times released him.” The hill
rises majestically from its base to the height of about eight hundred
feet; its crest encircled by the ancient wall and towers raised by

      There was a day when they were young and proud,
      Banners on high, and battles passed below;
      But they who fought are in a bloody shroud,
      And those which waved are shredless dust ere now,
      And the bleak battlements shall bear no future blow;[4.30.7]

unless the Cossack should follow the track of Roshan Ali or Mahmud, and
try to tear the British flag from the _kunguras_ of Ajmer. On the north
side a party of the superintendent’s were unlocking the latent treasures
in the bowels of the mountain. The vein is of lead; a sulphuret, or
galena [783].[4.30.8]

=The Bīsal Tālāb.=—I have already mentioned the lake, called after the
excavator, the Bisal Talab. It is about eight miles in circumference,
and besides the beauty it adds to the vale of Ajmer, it has a source of
interest in being the fountain of the Luni, which pursues its silent
course until it unites with the eastern arm of the Delta of the Indus:
the point of outlet is at the northern angle of the Daulat Bagh, ‘the
gardens of wealth,’ built by Jahangir for his residence when he
undertook to conquer the Rajputs. The water is not unwholesome, and
there are three outlets at this fountainhead for the escape of the water
fitting its periodical altitudes. The stream at its parent source is
thence called the Sagarmati. It takes a sweep northward by Bhaonta and
Pisangan, and close to where we crossed it, at Govindgarh, it is joined
by the Sarasvati from Pushkar; when the united waters (at whose
_sangam_, or confluence, there is a small temple to the manes) are
called the Luni.

The gardens erected on the embankment of the lake must have been a
pleasant abode for “the king of the world,” while his lieutenants were
carrying on the war against the Rana: but the imperial residence of
marble, in which he received the submissions of that prince, through his
grandson, and the first ambassador sent by England to the Mogul, are now
going fast to decay. The walks on which his majesty last paraded, in the
state-coach sent by our James the First, are now overgrown with shrubs.

The stratification of the rock, at the point of outlet, would interest
the geologist, especially an extensive vein of mica, adjoining another
of almost transparent quartz.

=Anasāgar Lake.=—Eastward of this lake about a mile is another named the
Anasagar, after the grandson of Bisaldeo, who has left the reputation of
great liberality, and a contrast with Visala. The vestiges of an island
are yet seen in the lake, and upon its margin; but the materials have
been carried away by the Goths. There are two small buildings on the
adjacent heights, called “the annulets of Khwaja Kutb,” and some other

Such are the wonders in the environs of Daru-l-Khair, “celebrated in the
history of the Moguls, as well as of the Hindus.” But my search for
inscriptions to corroborate the legends of the Chauhans proved
fruitless. I was, however, fortunate enough to add to my numismatic
treasures some of the currency of these ancient kings, which give
interest to a series of the same description, all appertaining [784] to
the Buddhists or Jains. The inscription occupying one side is in a most
antique character, the knowledge of which is still a desideratum: the
reverse bears the effigies of a horse, the object of worship to the
Indo-Scythic Rajput.[4.30.9] It is not improbable that the Agnikula
Chauhan may have brought these letters with him from higher Asia.
Researches in these countries for such monuments may yet discover how
far this conjecture is correct. At Pushkar I also found some very
ancient coins. Had the antiquary travelled these regions prior to the
reign of Aurangzeb he would have had a noble field to explore: many
coins were destroyed by this bigot, but many were buried underground,
which time or accident may disclose. He was the great foe of Rajput
fame; and well might the bard, in the words of the Cambrian minstrel,

                    Ruin seize thee, ruthless king.

They did repay his cruelties by the destruction of his race. In one
short century from this tyrant, who grasped each shore of the peninsula,
the Mogul power was extinct; while the oppressed Rajputs are again on
the ascendant. But the illiterate and mercenary Afghan, “the descendant
of the lost tribes of Israel,”[4.30.10] if we credit their traditions,
may share the iniquity with Aurangzeb: for they fulfilled literally a
duty which their supposed forefathers pertinaciously refused, and made
war against every graven image. Had they even spared us a few of the
monsters, the joint conceptions of the poet and the sculptor, I might
have presented some specimens of griffins (_gras_)[4.30.11] and demons
almost of a classical taste: but the love of mischief was too strong
even to let these escape: the shoe was applied to the prominent features
of everything which represented animation.

By a medium of several meridian observations, I made the latitude of
Ajmer 26° 19´ north; its longitude, by time and measurement from my
fixed meridian, Udaipur, 74° 40´, nearly the position assigned to it by
the father of Indian geography, the justly celebrated Rennell.[4.30.12]

=Return March to Udaipur.=—_December 5._—At daybreak we left the towers
of Manika Rae, enveloped in mist, and turned our horses’ heads to the
southward, on our return to Udaipur. While at Ajmer, I received accounts
of the death of the prince of Kotah, and did intend to proceed direct to
that capital, by Shahpura and Bundi; but my presence was desired by the
Rana to repair the dilapidations which only two months’ absence had
[785] occasioned in the political fabric which I had helped to
reconstruct. Other interesting objects intervened: one, a visit to the
new castle of Bhimgarh, erecting in Merwara to overawe the Mers; the
other to compose the feuds which raged between the sectarian merchants
of the new mart, Bhilwara, and which threatened to destroy all my
labour. We made two marches to Bhinai, in which there was nothing to
record. Bhinai is the residence of a Rathor chieftain, whose position is
rather peculiar. Being placed within the district of Ajmer, and paying
an annual quit-rent to the British, he may consider the Company as his
sovereign; but although this position precludes all political
subordination to the chief of the race, the tie would be felt and
acknowledged, on a lapse, in the anxiety for the usual _tika_ of
recognition to his successor, from the Raja of Marwar. I argue on
knowledge of character and customs; though it is possible this
individual case might be against me.

The castle of Bhinai is a picturesque object in these level plains; it
is covered with the cactus, or prickly pear, so abundant on the east
side of the Aravalli. This was anciently the residence of a branch of
the Parihara princes of Mandor, when held as a fief of the Chauhans of
Ajmer; and from it originated a numerous mixed class, called the
Parihara Minas, a mixture of Rajput and aboriginal blood.

=Deolia.=—_December 6._—Deolia, near the northern bank of the Khari, the
present boundary of Ajmer and Mewar. From Ajmer to Deolia the direction
of the road is S.S.E., and the distance forty miles. This important
district in the political geography of Rajputana, which, with the posts
of Nimach and Mhow, is the connecting link between the British dominions
on the Jumna and in the Deccan, was obtained by cession from Sindhia in
1818. A glance at the map is sufficient to show its importance in our
existing connexion with Rajputana. The greatest breadth of the district
is between the Aravalli west and the Banas east, and measures about
eight miles. The greatest length is between the city of Ajmer and Jhak,
a post in Merwara, measuring about forty miles. The narrowest portion is
that where we now are, Deolia, whence the Kishangarh frontier can be
seen over a neck of land of about twelve miles in extent. Within these
bounds a great portion of the land is held by feudal chieftains paying a
quit-rent, which I believe is fixed. I had to settle a frontier dispute
at Deolia, regarding the right of cultivating in the bed of the Khari,
which produces very good melons. The soil of Ajmer cannot [786] be
called rich, and is better adapted for the lighter than the richer
grains. Marks of war and rapine were visible throughout.


  _To face page 904._

=Dābla.=—_December 7._—This town was a sub-fee of Banera; but the
vassal, a Rathor, had learned habits of insubordination during Mahratta
influence, which he could not or would not throw aside. In these he was
further encouraged by his connexion by marriage with the old ruler of
Kotah, who had exemplified his hostility to the Dabla vassal’s liege
lord by besieging his castle of Banera. Having so long disobeyed him,
his Rajput blood refused to change with the times; and though he
condescended, at the head of his twenty retainers, to perform homage on
stated days, and take his allotted position in the Banera darbar, he
refused to pay the quit-rent, to which numerous deeds proved his
suzerain had a right. Months passed away in ineffectual remonstrances;
it was even proposed that he should hold the inferior dependencies free
of quit-rent, but pay those of Dabla. All being in vain, the demand was
increased to the complete surrender of Dabla; which elicited a truly
Rajput reply: “His head and Dabla were together.” This obstinacy could
not be tolerated; and he was told that though one would suffice, if
longer withheld both might be required. Like a brave Rathor, he had
defended it for months against a large Mahratta force, and hence Dabla
was vauntingly called “the little Bharatpur.” Too late he saw his error,
but there was no receding; and though he at length offered a nazarana,
through the mediation of the Kotah wakil, of 20,000 rupees, to obtain
the Rana’s investiture, it was refused and a surrender was insisted on.
Being an important frontier-post, it was retained by the Rana, and
compensation was made to Banera. Every interest was made for him through
the Nestor of Kotah, but in vain; his obstinacy offered an example too
pernicious to admit of the least retrocession, and Dabla was forthwith
incorporated with the appanage of the heir-apparent, Jawan Singh.

Almost the whole of this, the Badnor division, of 360 townships, is
occupied by Rathors, the descendants of those who accompanied Jaimall to
Mewar: the proportion of feudal to fiscal land therein is as three to
one. It is a rich and fertile tract, and it is to be hoped will maintain
in ease and independence the brave men who inhabit it, and who have a
long time been the sport of rapine.

I received a visit from the chief vassal of the Badnor chief, then at
the capital; and as I found it impossible to visit Merwara, I
subsequently deputed Captain [787] Waugh who was hospitably received and
entertained at Badnor. He hunted, and played the Holi with the old
baron, who shows at all times the frankness of his race: but it being
the period of the Saturnalia, he was especially unreserved; though he
was the greatest stickler for etiquette amongst my many friends, and was
always expatiating on the necessity of attending to the gradations of

=Banera.=—_December 8._—The castle of Banera is one of the most imposing
feudal edifices of Mewar, and its lord one of the greatest of its
chieftains. He not only bears the title of Raja, but has all the
state-insignia attached thereto. His name happens to be the same as that
of his sovereign—his being Raja Bhim, the prince’s Rana Bhim,—to whom he
is nearly related, and but for blind chance might have been lord of all
the Sesodias. It may be recollected that the chivalrous antagonist of
Aurangzeb, the heroic Rana Raj, had two sons, twins, if we may so term
sons simultaneously born, though by different mothers. The incident
which decided the preference of Jai Singh to Bhim has been
related;[4.30.13] the circumstance of the latter’s abandoning his
country to court fortune under the Imperial standard—his leading his
Rajput contingent amongst the mountains of Kandahar—and his death by
dislocation of the spine, through urging his horse at speed amongst the
boughs of a tree. The present incumbent of Banera is the descendant of
that Raja Bhim, who was succeeded in the honours of his family by his
son Suraj, killed whilst heading his contingent at the storm of Bijapur.
The infant son of Suraj had four districts assigned to him, all taken
from his suzerain, the Rana. In such esteem did the emperor hold the
family, that the son of Suraj was baptized Sultan. He was succeeded by
Sardar Singh, who, on the breaking up of the empire, came under the
allegiance of his rightful sovereign the Rana. Rae Singh and Hamir Singh
complete the chain to my friend Raja Bhim, who did me the honour to
advance two miles from Banera to welcome and conduct me to his castle.
Here I had a good opportunity of observing the feudal state and manners
of these chiefs within their own domains during a visit of three hours
at Banera. I was, moreover, much attached to Raja Bhim, who was a
perfectly well-bred and courteous gentleman, and who was quite
unreserved with me. From his propinquity to the reigning family, and
from his honours and insignia being the gift of the king’s, he had been
an object of jealousy to the court, which tended much to retard the
restoration [788] of his authority over his sub-vassals of Banera; the
chief of Dabla is one instance of this. I found little difficulty in
banishing the discord between him and his sovereign, who chiefly
complained of the Banera kettle-drums beating, not only as he entered
the city, but as far as the Porte—the sacred Tripolia; and the use of
Chamar[4.30.14] in his presence. It was arranged that these emblems of
honour, emanating from the great foes of Mewar, should never be obtruded
on the eye or ear of the Rana; though within his own domain the Banera
chieftain might do as he pleased. This was just; and Raja Bhim had too
much good sense not to conciliate his “brother and cousin,” Rana Bhim,
by such a concession, which otherwise might have been insisted upon. The
estate of Banera is in value 80,000 rupees of annual rent, one-half of
which is in subinfeudations, his vassals being chiefly Rathors. The only
service performed by Raja Bhim is the contributing a quota for the
commercial mart of Bhilwara, with the usual marks of subordination,
personal duty and homage to the Rana. His estate is much impoverished
from its lying in the very track of the freebooters; but the soil is
excellent, and time will bring hands to cultivate it, if we exercise a
long and patient indulgence.

The ‘velvet cushion’ was spread in a balcony projecting from the main
hall of Banera; here the Raja’s vassals were mustered, and he placed me
by his side on the _gaddi_. There was not a point of his rural or
domestic economy upon which he did not descant, and ask my advice, as
his “adopted brother.” I was also made umpire between him and my old
friend the baron of Badnor, regarding a marriage settlement, the
granddaughter of the latter being married to the heir of Banera. I had,
besides, to wade through old grants and deeds to settle the claims
between the Raja and several of his sub-vassals; a long course of
disorder having separated them so much from each other as to obliterate
their respective rights. All these arbitrations were made without
reference to my official situation, but were forced upon me merely by
the claims of friendship; but it was a matter of exultation to be
enabled to make use of my influence for the adjustment of such disputes,
and for restoring individual as well as general prosperity. My friend
prepared his gifts at parting; I went through the forms of receiving,
but waived accepting them: which may be done without any offence to
delicacy. I have been highly gratified to read the kind reception he
gave to the respected Bishop Heber, in his tour through Mewar. I wonder,
however, that this discerning and elegant-minded man did not [789]
notice the peculiar circumstance of the Raja’s teeth being fixed in with
gold wire, which produces rather an unpleasant articulation.[4.30.15]

Banera adjoins the estates of the Rathors, and is no great distance from
those of the Sangawats and Jagawats, which lie at the base of the
Aravalli. All require a long period of toleration and unmolested
tranquillity to emerge from their impoverished condition. My friend
accompanied me to my tents, when I presented to him a pair of pistols,
and a telescope with which he might view his neighbours on the
mountains: we parted with mutual satisfaction, and I believe, mutual

=Bhīlwāra.=—_December 9._—I encamped about half-a-mile from _our_ good
town of Bhilwara, which was making rapid strides to prosperity,
notwithstanding drawbacks from sectarian feuds; with which, however, I
was so dissatisfied, that I refused every request to visit the town
until such causes of retardation were removed. I received a deputation
from both parties at my tents, and read them a lecture for their
benefit, in which I lamented the privation of the pleasure of witnessing
their unalloyed prosperity. Although I reconciled them to each other, I
would not confide in their promises until months of improvement should
elapse. They abided by their promise, and I fulfilled mine when the
death of the Bundi prince afforded an opportunity, _en route_ to that
capital, to visit them. My reception was far too flattering to describe,
even if this were the proper place. The sentiments they entertained for
me had suffered no diminution when Bishop Heber visited the town. But
his informant (one of the merchants), when he said it ought to have been
called Tod-ganj, meant that it was so intended, and actually received
this appellation: but it was changed, at my request, and on pain of
withdrawing my entire support from it. The Rana, who used to call it
himself in conversation “_Tod Sahib ki basti_,” would have been
gratified; but it would have been wrong to avail myself of his
partiality. In all I was enabled to do, from my friendship, not from my
official character, I always feared the dangers to his independence from
such precedent for interference.[4.30.16]

=Māndalgarh.=—_December 10._—I deviated from the direct course
_homewards_ (to Udaipur) to visit this beautiful spot, formerly the head
of a flourishing district; but all was dilapidated. The first revenue
derived from Mandal was expended on the repairs of the dam of its lake,
which irrigates a great extent of rice-land. The Goths had felled [790]
most of the fine trees which had ornamented its dam and margin; and
several garden-houses, as well as that on the island in the lake, were
in ruins. Not many years ago a column of victory, said to have been
raised by Bisaladeva of Ajmer, in consequence of a victory over the
Guhilots, graced this little isle. Mandal is now rising from its ruins,
and one of the exiles was so fortunate as to find a vessel containing
several pieces of gold and ornaments, in excavating the ruins of his
ancient abode, though not buried by him. It involved the question of
manorial rights, of which the Rana waived the enforcement, though he
asserted them. To-day I passed between Pansal and Arja, the former still
held by a Saktawat, the latter now united to the fisc. I have already
related the feud between the Saktawats and the Purawats in the struggle
for Arja, which is one of the most compact castles in Mewar, with a
domain of 52,000 bighas, or 12,000 acres, attached to it, rendering it
well worth a contest; but the Saktawat had no right there, say the
Purawats; and in fact it is in the very heart of their lands.

=Pur.=—_December 11._—This is one of the oldest towns of Mewar, and if
we credit tradition, anterior in date to Vikrama. We crossed the
Kotasari to and from Mandal, passing by the tin and copper mines of
Dariba, and the Purawat estate of Pitawas. Pur means, _par eminence_,
‘the city,’ and anciently the title was admissible; even now it is one
of the chief fiscal towns. It is in the very heart of the canton,
inhabited by the Babas, or ‘infants’ of Mewar, embracing a circle of
about twenty-five miles diameter. The broken chain of mountains, having
Banera on the northern point and Gurla to the south, passes transversely
through this domain, leaving the estate of Bagor, the residence of
Sheodan Singh, west, and extending to the S.E. to Mangrop, across the
Berach. The policy which dictated the establishment of an isolated
portion of the blood-royal of Mewar in the very centre of the country
was wise; for the Babas rarely or ever mix with the politics of the
feudatory chieftains, home or foreign. They are accordingly entrusted
with the command of all garrisons, and head the feudal quotas as the
representative of their sovereign. They have a particular seat at court,
the Baba ka Ol being distinct from the chieftains’, and in front. Though
they inhabit the lands about Pur, it is not from these they derive their
name, but as descendants from Puru, one of the twenty-five sons of Rana
Udai Singh, that blot in the scutcheon of Mewar [791].

=Garnets.=—About a mile east of Pur there is an isolated hill of blue
slate, in which I found garnets embedded. I have no doubt persevering
adventurers would be rewarded; but though I tried them with the hammer,
I obtained none of any value. They are also to be obtained on the
southern frontier of Kishangarh and Ajmer, about Sarwar. I received the
visits of the ‘infants’ of Gurla and Gadarmala, both most respectable
men, and enjoying good estates, with strong castles, which I passed the
next day.

=Rāsmi, on the Banās River.=—_December 12._—We had a long march through
the most fertile lands of Mewar, all belonging to the Rana’s personal
domain. The progress towards prosperity is great; of which Rasmi, the
head of a tappa or subdivision of a district, affords evidence, as well
as every village. On our way we were continually met by peasants with
songs of joy, and our entrance into each village was one of triumph. The
Patels and other rustic officers, surrounded by the ryots, came out of
the villages; while the females collected in groups, with brass vessels
filled with water gracefully resting on their heads, stood at the
entrance, their scarfs half covering their faces, chaunting the
_suhela_; a very ancient custom of the Hindu cultivator on receiving the
superior, and tantamount to an acknowledgment of supremacy. Whether
vanity was flattered, or whether a better sentiment was awakened, on
receiving such tokens of gratitude, it is not for me to determine: the
sight was pleasing, and the custom was general while I travelled in
Mewar. The females bearing the _kalas_ on their heads, were everywhere
met with. These were chiefly the wives and daughters of the cultivators,
though not unfrequently those of the Rajput sub-vassals. The former were
seldom very fair, though they had generally fine eyes and good persons.
We met many fragments of antiquity at Rasmi. Captain Waugh and the
doctor were gratified with angling in the Banas for trout; but as the
fish would not rise to the fly, I set the net, and obtained several
dozens: the largest measured seventeen inches, and weighed seventy
rupees, or nearly two pounds.


  _To face page 910._

=Merta.=—_December 16._—After an absence of two months we terminated our
circuitous journey, and encamped on the ground whence we started, all
rejoiced at the prospect of again entering “the happy valley.” We made
four marches across the _duab_, watered by the Berach and Banas rivers;
the land naturally rich, and formerly boasting some large towns, but as
yet only disclosing the germs of [792] prosperity. There is not a more
fertile tract in India than this, which would alone defray the expenses
of the court if its resources were properly husbanded. But years must
first roll on, and the peasant must meet with encouragement, and a
reduction of taxation to the lowest rate; and the lord-paramount must
alike be indulgent in the exaction of his tribute. Our camels were the
greatest sufferers in the march through the desert, and one-half were
rendered useless. I received a deputation conveying the Rana’s
congratulation on my return ‘home,’ with a letter full of friendship and
importunities to see me; but the register of the heavens—an oracle
consulted by the Rajput as faithfully as Moore’s Almanack by the British
yeoman—showed an unlucky aspect, and I must needs halt at Merta, or in
the valley, until the signs were more favourable to a re-entry into
Udaipur. Here we amused ourselves in chalking out the site of our
projected residence on the heights of Tus, and in fishing at the source
of the Berach. Of this scene I present the reader with a view; and if he
allows his imagination to ascend the dam which confines the waters of
the lake, he may view the Udaisagar, with its islets; and directing his
eye across its expanse, he may gain a bird’s-eye view of the palace of
the Kaisar of the Sesodias. The dam thrown across a gorge of the
mountains is of enormous magnitude and strength, as is necessary,
indeed, to shut in a volume of water twelve miles in circumference. At
its base, the point of outlet, is a small hunting-seat of the Rana’s,
going to decay for want of funds to repair it, like all those on the
Tiger Mount and in the valley. Nor is there any hope that the revenues,
burthened as they are with the payment of a clear fourth in tribute, can
supply the means of preventing further dilapidation.

_December 19._—Tired of two days’ idleness, we passed through the
portals of Debari on our way to Ar, to which place the Rana signified
his intention of advancing in person, to receive and conduct me ‘home’:
an honour as unlooked-for and unsolicited as it was gratifying. Udaipur
presents a most imposing appearance when approached from the east. The
palace of the Rana, and that of the heir-apparent, the great temple, and
the houses of the nobles, with their turrets and cupolas rising in airy
elegance, afford a pleasing contrast with the heavy wall and pierced
battlements of the city beneath. This wall is more extensive than solid.
To remedy this want of strength, a chain of fortresses has [793] been
constructed, about gunshot from it, commanding every road leading
thereto, which adds greatly to the effect of the landscape. These
castellated heights contain places of recreation, one of which belongs
to Salumbar; but all wear the same aspect of decay.

=Ahār.=—Ar, or Ahar,[4.30.17] near which we encamped, is sacred to the
manes of the princes of Udaipur, and contains the cenotaphs of all her
kings since the valley became their residence; but as they do not
disdain association, either in life or death, with their vassals, Ar
presents the appearance of a thickly crowded cemetery, in which the
mausoleums of the Ranas stand pre-eminent in “the place of great
faith.”[4.30.18] The renowned Amra Singh’s is the most conspicuous; but
the cenotaphs of all the princes, down to the father of Rana Bhim, are
very elegant, and exactly what such structures ought to be; namely,
vaulted roofs, supported by handsome columns raised on lofty terraces,
the architraves of enormous single blocks, all of white marble, from the
quarries of Kankroli. There are some smaller tombs of a singularly
elaborate character, and of an antiquity which decides the claims of Ar
to be considered as the remains of a very ancient city. The ground is
strewed with the wrecks of monuments and old temples, which have been
used in erecting the sepulchres of the Ranas. The great city was the
residence of their ancestors, and is said to have been founded by
Asaditya upon the site of the still more ancient capital of
Tambavatinagari, where dwelt the Tuar ancestors of Vikramaditya, before
he obtained Avinti, or Ujjain. From Tambavatinagari its name was changed
to Anandpur, ‘the happy city,’ and at length to Ahar, which gave the
patronymic to the Guhilot race, namely, Aharya. The vestiges of immense
mounds still remain to the eastward, called the Dhul-kot, or ‘fort,’
destroyed by ‘ashes’ (_dhul_) of a volcanic eruption. Whether the lakes
of the valley owe their origin to the same cause which is said to have
destroyed the ancient Ahar, a more skilful geologist must determine. The
chief road from the city is cut through this mound; and as I had
observed fragments of sculpture and pottery on the excavated sides, I
commenced a regular opening of the mound in search of medals, and
obtained a few with the effigies of an animal, which I fancied to be a
lion, but others the _gadha_, or ass, attributed to Gandharvasen, the
brother of Vikrama, who placed this impress on his coins, the reason of
which is given in a long legend.[4.30.19] My impious intentions were
soon checked by some designing knaves about the Rana, and I would not
offend [794] superstition. But the most superficial observer will
pronounce Ar to have been an ancient and extensive city, the walls which
enclose this sepulchral abode being evidently built with the sculptured
fragments of temples. Some shrines, chiefly Jain, are still standing,
though in the last stage of dilapidation, and they have been erected
from the ruins of shrines still older, as appears from the motley
decorations, where statues and images are inserted with their heads
reversed, and Mahavira and Mahadeva come into actual contact: all are in
white marble. Two inscriptions were obtained; one very long and
complete, in the nail-headed character of the Jains; but their
interpretation is yet a desideratum. A topographical map of this curious
valley would prove interesting, and for this I have sufficient
materials. The Teli-ki-Sarai would not be omitted in such a map, as
adding another to the many instances I have met with, among this
industrious class, to benefit their fellow-citizens. The ‘Oilman’s
Caravanserai’ is not conspicuous for magnitude; but it is remarkable,
not merely for its utility, but even for its elegance of design. It is
equi-distant from each of the lakes. The Teli-ka-Pul, or ‘Oilman’s
Bridge,’ at Nurabad, is, however, a magnificent memorial of the trade,
and deserves preservation; and as I shall not be able now to describe
the region (Gwalior) where it stands, across the Asan, I will substitute
it for the Sarai, of which I have no memorial.[4.30.20] These Telis
(oilmen) perambulate the country with skins of oil on a bullock, and
from hard-earned pence erect the structures which bear their name. India
owes much to individual munificence.

The planets were adverse to my happy conjunction with the Sun of the
Hindus: and it was determined that I should pass another day amongst the
tombs of Ahar; but I invoked upon my own devoted head all the evil
consequences, as in this case I was the only person who was threatened.
To render this opposition to the decree less noxious, it was agreed that
I should make my _entrée_ by the southern, not by the eastern porte,
that of the sun. The Rana came, attended by his son, his chiefs, his
ministers, and, in fact, all the capital in his train. The most hearty
welcomes were lavished upon us all. “_Rama! Rama! Tod Sahib!_” (the
Hindu greeting) resounded from a thousand throats, while I addressed
each chief by name. It was not a meeting of formality, but of
well-cemented friendship. My companions, Captain Waugh and Dr. Duncan,
were busy interchanging smiles and cordial greetings, when the Rana,
requesting our presence at the palace next day [795], bade us adieu. He
took the direct road to his palace, while we, to avoid evil spirits,
made a detour by the southern portal, to gain our residence, the garden
of Rampiyari.


  _To face page 914._


Footnote 4.30.1:

  See Archbishop Potter’s _Archaeologia_, vol. i. p. 192. [Cicero, _De
  Legibus_, ii. 25, 26; Grote, _Hist. of Greece_, ed. 1869, xii. 184.]

Footnote 4.30.2:

  [Fergusson (_Hist. Indian Arch._ ii. 210 f.) says it was begun in A.D.
  1200, and completed during the reign of Iyaltimish (1211-36). The
  temple may have been originally Jain, but it had been altered by

Footnote 4.30.3:

  [Cunningham searched in vain for the Sanskrit inscription. “I am
  inclined to believe that Tod may have mistaken some of the square
  Cufic writing for ancient Sanskrit. It is, indeed, possible that the
  square Cufic inscription which records the building of the mosque in
  A.H. 596 (A.D. 1200) may once have occupied the position described by
  Tod over the apex of the central arch” (_ASR_, ii. 262 f.).]

Footnote 4.30.4:

  [“It is certain that they are not Jain pillars, as I found many
  four-armed figures sculptured on them, besides a single figure of the
  skeleton goddess, Kāli” (_ibid._ 259).]

Footnote 4.30.5:

  Both epithets imply ‘Lord of the Universe,’ [?] and of which the name
  of Prithiraj, that of the last Chauhan emperor, is another version.

Footnote 4.30.6:

  Chance obtained me the drawing of this temple; I wish it had also
  given me the name of its author to grace the page.

Footnote 4.30.7:

  _Childe Harold_, Canto iii. [47].

Footnote 4.30.8:

  [The Tāragarh hill is rich in lead, and iron and copper mines have
  been worked, but did not pay expenses. The lead is purer than European
  pig lead, but lack of fuel and cheap transport have driven it from the
  market. (Watson i. A. 60 f.)]

Footnote 4.30.9:

  [Probably the “Bull and Horseman” type, see p. 809, above. The
  inscription is in Hindi characters.]

Footnote 4.30.10:

  They claim Ishmael as their common ancestor.

Footnote 4.30.11:

  [The _grāsda_ or _sārdūla_, a figure of a horned lion or panther
  (Fergusson-Burgess, _Cave Temples of India_, 439).]

Footnote 4.30.12:

  [He was nearly right—Ajmer, 26° 27´ N. lat., 74° 37´ E. long.;
  Udaipur, 24° 35´ N. lat., 73° 42´ E. long.]

Footnote 4.30.13:

  See Vol. I. p. 456.

Footnote 4.30.14:

  [The yak tail, one of the insignia of royalty.]

Footnote 4.30.15:

  [Bishop Heber writes: “He was an elderly man, and had lost many teeth,
  which made it very difficult for me to understand him” (_Narrative of
  a Journey_, ed. 1861, ii. 55).]

Footnote 4.30.16:

  See Vol. I. p. 562.

Footnote 4.30.17:

  [See p. 924.]

Footnote 4.30.18:

  [The Mahāsati.]

Footnote 4.30.19:

  [These rude Indo-Sassanian coins, also known as Tātariya dirhams, are
  popularly called Gadhiya paisa, or “ass copper money,” because the
  worn-down representation of a fire temple was believed to be the head
  of an ass (Cunningham, _Ancient Geography_, 313; Elliot-Dowson i. 3,
  note; _BG_, i. Part i. 469, note). Gandharvasen, as a punishment for
  offending Indra, was condemned to assume the form of an ass during the
  day: he consorted with a princess, and their offspring was
  Vikramāditya (_Asiatic Researches_, vi. 35 f.; W. Ward, _The Hindoos_,
  2nd ed. i. 22).]

Footnote 4.30.20:

  [Nūrābād is on the old road from Agra to Gwalior, 63 miles S. of the
  former, and 15 miles N. of the latter. “There is a fair sketch of the
  bridge in Tod’s ‘Rajasthan,’ which, however, scarcely does justice to
  it, as it is deficient in those architectural details which form the
  most pleasing part of the structure” (_ASR_, ii. 397).]




   _Translations of Inscriptions, chiefly in the Nail-headed character
 of the Takshak Races and Jains, fixing eras in Rajput history._[4.30a.1]

                                 No. I

Memorial of a Gete or Jit prince of the fifth century, discovered 1820,
    in a temple at Kunswa, near the Chumbul river, south of Kotah.

May the Jit’ha be thy protector! What does this Jit’h resemble? which is
the vessel of conveyance across the waters of life, which is partly
white, partly red? Again, what does it resemble, where the
hissing-angered serpents dwell? What may this Jit’ha be compared to,
from whose root the roaring flood descends? Such is the Jit’ha; by it
may thou be preserved (1).

The fame of RAJA JIT I now shall tell, by whose valour the lands of
SALPOORA (2) are preserved. The fortunes of Raja Jit are as flames of
fire devouring his foe. The mighty warrior JIT SALINDRA (2) is beautiful
in person, and from the strength of his arm esteemed the first amongst
the tribes of the mighty; make resplendent, as does the moon the earth,
the dominions of SALPOORI. The whole world praises the JIT prince, who
enlarges the renown of his race, sitting in the midst of haughty
warriors, like the lotos in the waters, the moon of the sons of men. The
foreheads of the princes of the earth worship the toe of his foot. Beams
of light irradiate his countenance, issuing from the gems of his arms of
strength. Radiant is his array; his riches abundant; his mind generous
and profound as the ocean. Such is he of SARYA (3) race, a tribe
renowned amongst the tribes of the mighty, whose princes were ever foes
to treachery, to whom the earth surrendered her fruits, and who added
the lands of their foes to their own. By sacrifice, the mind of this
lord of men has been purified; fair are his territories, and fair is the
FORTRESS OF TAK’HYA (4). The string of whose bow is dreaded, whose wrath
is the reaper of the field of combat; but to his dependents he is as the
pearl on the neck; who makes no account of the battle, though streams of
blood run through the field. As does the silver lotos bend its head
before the fierce rays of the sun, so does his foe stoop to him, while
the cowards abandon the field [796].

From this lord of men (_Narpati_) SALINDRA sprung DEVANGLI, whose deeds
are known even at _this remote period_.

From him was born SUMBOOKA, and from him DEGALI, who married two wives
of YADU race (5), and by one a son named VIRA NARINDRA, pure as a flower
from the fountain.

Amidst groves of _amba_, on whose clustering blossoms hang myriads of
bees, that the wearied traveller might repose, was this edifice erected.
May it, and the fame of its founder, continue while ocean rolls, or
while the moon, the sun, and hills endure. Samvat 597.—On the extremity
of MALWA, this minster (MINDRA) was erected, on the banks of the river

Whoever will commit this writing to memory, his sins will be
obliterated. Carved by the sculptor SEVANARYA, son of DWARASIVA, and
composed by BUTENA, chief of the bards.

_Note 1._—In the prologue to this valuable relic, which superficially
viewed would appear a string of puerilities, we have conveyed in mystic
allegory the mythological origin of the Jit or Gete race. From the
members of the chief of the gods ISWARA or Mahadeva, _the god of
battle_, many races claim birth: the warrior from his arms; the Charun
from his spine; the prophetic Bhat (_Vates_) from his tongue; and the
Gete or Jit derive theirs from his tiara, which, formed of his own hair,
is called _Jit’ha_. In this tiara, serpents, emblematic of TIME (kal)
and DESTRUCTION, are wreathed; also implicative that the _Jits_, who are
of _Takshac_, or the serpent race, are thereby protected. The “roaring
flood” which descends from this _Jit’ha_ is the river goddess, Ganga,
daughter of Mena, wife of Iswara. The mixed colour of his hair, which is
partly white, partly of reddish (_panduranga_) hue, arises from his
character of ARD’HNARI, or Hermaphroditus. All these characteristics of
the god of war must have been brought by the Scythic Gete from the
Jaxartes, where they worshipped him as the Sun (_Balnat’h_) and as
XAMOLSCIS (_Yama_, vulg. _Jama_) the infernal divinity.

The 12th chapter of the Edda, in describing BALDER the second son of
Odin, particularly dwells on the beauty of his hair, whence “the
_whitest of all vegetables is called the eyebrow of Balder, on the
columns of whose temples there are verses engraved, capable of recalling
the dead to life_.”

How perfectly in unison is all this of the Jits of Jutland and the Jits
of Rajast’han. In each case the hair is the chief object of admiration;
of Balnath as Balder, and the magical effect of the Runes is not more
powerful than that attached by the chief of the Scalds of our Gete
prince at the end of this inscription, fresh evidences in support of my
hypothesis, that many of the Rajpoot races and Scandinavians have a
common origin—that origin, Central Asia.

_Note 2._—Salpoora is the name of the capital of this Jit prince, and
his epithet of Sal-indra is merely titular, as the Indra, or lord of
Sal-poori, ‘the city of Sal,’ which the fortunate discovery of an
inscription raised by Komarpal, king of Anhulwarra (_Nehrwalla_ of
D’Anville), dated S. 1207, has enabled me to place “at the base of the
Sewaluk Mountains.” In order to elucidate this point, and to give the
full value to this record of the Jit princes of the Punjab, I append
(No. V.) a translation of the Nehrwalla conqueror’s inscription, which
will prove beyond a doubt that these JIT princes of SALPOORI in the
_Punjab_ were the leaders of that very colony of the Yuti from the
Jaxartes, who in the fifth century, as recorded by De Guignes, crossed
the Indus and possessed themselves of the Punjab; and strange to say,
have again risen to power, for the Sikhs (_disciples_) of Nanuk are
almost all of Jit origin.

_Note 3._—Here this Jit is called of SARYA SAC’HA, _branch_ or
_ramification_ of the _Saryas_: a very ancient race which is noticed by
the genealogists synonymously with the SARIASPA, one of the thirty-six
royal races, and very probably the same as the SARWYA of the Komarpal
Charitra, with the distinguished epithet “the flower of the martial
races” (_Sarwya c’shatrya tyn Sar_).

_Note 4._—“The fortress of Takshac.” Whether this TAKSHACNAGARI, or
castle of the Tâk, is the [797] stronghold of SALPOORI, or the name
given to a conquest in the environs of the place, whence this
inscription, we can only surmise, and refer the reader to what has been
said of Takitpoora. As I have repeatedly said, the Tâks and Jits are one

_Note 5._—As the Jits intermarried with the Yadus at this early period,
it is evident they had forced their way amongst the thirty-six royal
races, though they have again lost this rank. No Rajpoot would give a
daughter to a Jit, or take one from them to wife.

_Note 6._—Salichandra is the sixth in descent from the first-named
prince, JIT SALINDRA, allowing twenty-two years to each descent = 132—S.
597, date of ins. = S. 465-56 = A.D. 409; the period of the colonization
of the Punjab by the Getes, Yuti, or Jits, from the Jaxartes.[4.30a.2]


Footnote 4.30a.1:

  [The Inscriptions quoted in this appendix have been reprinted as they
  stand in the original text: partly, because it would have been
  necessary to discard the Author’s versions, and to replace them by the
  translations of recent scholars; partly, as an example of the Author’s
  methods of translation and annotation. With the help of Mr. Vincent A.
  Smith and Pandit Gaurishankar Ojha of the Rājputāna Museum, Ajmer,
  references have been added to modern translations of the

Footnote 4.30a.2:

  [This Inscription is on a stone built into a wall of a temple of
  Mahādeva, at Kanaswa, near Kotah. The Author’s “Jit prince” of Sālpur
  is due to a misunderstanding, and in all probability owes its origin
  to the words _Sambhor-jjatā_, ‘the matted hair of Sambhu,’ a title of
  Siva, in line 2 of the Inscription. The Inscription begins with verses
  in honour of Siva as Sambhu and Sthānu, and glorifies the Maurya race,
  and a king of that race named Dhavala. Dhavala had as his friend a
  prince of the Brāhman caste, named Sankuha, whose wife, Degini, bore
  to him the prince Sivagana, who built a temple to Siva, and endowed it
  with the revenues of two villages. The date is A.D. 738-9 (_IA_, xix.
  55 ff.).]


                                 No. II

Translation of an inscription in the Nail-headed character relative to
    the Jit race, discovered at Ram Chundrapoora, six miles east of
    Boondee, in digging a well. It was thence conveyed, and deposited by
    me in the Museum of the Royal Asiatic Society.

To my foe, salutation! This foe of the race of JIT, CATHIDA (1), how
shall I describe, who is resplendent by the favour of the round bosom of
ROODRANI (2), and whose ancestor, the warrior TUKHYA (3), formed the
garland on the neck of Mahadeva. Better than this foe on the earth’s
surface, there is none; therefore to him I offer salutation. The
sparkling gems on the coronets of kings irradiate the nail of his foot.

Of the race of BOTENA (4) RAJA T’HOT was born; his fame expanded through
the universe.

Pure in mind, strong in arm, and beloved by mankind, such was CHANDRASEN
(5). How shall he be described, who broke the strength of his foe, on
whom when his sword swims in fight, he appears like a magician. With his
subjects he interchanged the merchandise of liberality, of which he
reaped the fruits. From him whose history is fair, was born KRITIKA, the
deeds of whose arm were buds of renown, forming a necklace of praise in
the eyes of mankind. His queen was dear to him as his own existence—how
can she be described? As the flame is inseparable from the fire, so was
she from her lord—she was the light issuing from the sun—her name
GOON-NEWASA (6), and her actions corresponded with her name. By her he
had two sons, like gems set in bracelets, born to please mankind. The
eldest was named SOOKUNDA, the younger DERUKA. Their fortunes consumed
their foes: but their dependents enjoyed happiness. As the flowers of
Calp-vricsha are beloved by the gods, so are these brothers by their
subjects, granting their requests, and increasing the glory of the race,
whence they sprung.—[A useless descriptive stanza left out (7).]

DERUKA had a son, KUHLA, and his was DHUNIKA, whose deeds ascended
high—who could fathom the intentions of mankind—whose mind was deep as
the ocean—whose ever-hungry faulchion expelled from their mountains and
forests the MEENA tribes, leaving them no refuge in the three wolds,
levelling their retreats to the ground. His quiver was filled with
crescent-formed arrows—his sword the climber (_vela_) (8), of which
pearls are the fruit. With his younger brother Dewaka he reverences gods
and Brahmins—and with his own wealth perfumed a sacrifice to the sun

For the much-beloved’s (his wife) pleasure this was undertaken. Now the
river of ease, life and death, is crossed over, for this abode will
devour the body of the foe, into which the west wind wafts the fragrant
perfume from the sandal-covered bosom of Lacshmi (9); while from
innumerable lotos the gale from the east comes laden with aroma, the hum
of the bees as they hang clustering on the flowers of the _padhul_ is
pleasing to the ear.

So long as Soomeru stands on its base of golden sands, so long may this
dwelling endure. So long as the wind blows on the _koonjeris_ (10),
supporters of the globe, while the firmament endures, or while Lacshmi
(11) causes the palm to be extended, so long may his praise and this
edifice be stable. KUHLA (12) formed this abode of virtue, and east
thereof a temple to Iswara. By ACHIL, son of the mighty prince
YASOOVERMA (13), has its renown been composed in various forms of

_Note 1._—_Qu._ if this Jit is from (_da_, the mark of the genitive
case) Cathay? the land of the _Cat’hae_ foes of Alexander, and probably
of the Cathi of the Saurashtra peninsula, alike Scythic as the Jit, and
probably the same race originally?

_Note 2._—Roodrani, an epithet of the martial spouse of Harar-Siva, the
god of war, whom the Jit in the preceding inscription invokes.

_Note 3._—Here we have another proof of the Jit being of Takshac race;
this at the same time has a mythological reference to the serpent
(_takhya_), which forms the garland of the warlike divinities.

_Note 4._—Of this race I have no other notice, unless it should mean the
race (_cula_) was from _Butan_.

_Note 5._—Chandrasen is celebrated in the history of the Pramaras as the
founder of several cities, from two of which, _Chandrabhaga_, at the
foot of the central plateau of India, in Northern Malwa, and
CHANDRAVATI, the ruins of which I discovered at the foot of the Aravulli
near Aboo, I possess several valuable memoria, which will, ere long,
confirm the opinions I have given of the _Takshac_ architect.

_Note 6._—The habitation of virtues.

_Note 7._—This shows these foresters always had the same character.

_Note 8._—Vela is the climber or ivy, sacred to Mahadeva.

_Note 9._—Lacshmi, the _apsara_ or sea-nymph, is feigned residing
amongst the waters of the lotos-covered lake. In the hot weather the
Rajpoot ladies dip their corsets into an infusion of sandal-wood, hence
the metaphor.

_Note 10._—Koonjiris are the elephants who support the eight corners of
the globe.

_Note 11._—Lacshmi is also dame Fortune, or the goddess of riches,
whence this image.

_Note 12._—Kuhl is the fifth in descent from the _opponent_ of the Jit.

_Note 13._—Without this name this inscription would have been but of
half its value. Fortunately various inscriptions on stone and copper,
procured by me from Oojein, settled the era of the death of this prince
in S. 1191, which will alike answer for Achil, his son, who was most
likely one of the chieftains of KUHLA, who appears to have been of the
elder branch of the Pramaras, the foe of the Jit invaders [799].

                                No. III

Inscription in the Nail-headed character of the Mori Princes of
    Cheetore, taken from a column on the banks of the lake Mansurwur,
    near that city.

By the lord of waters may thou be protected! What is there which
resembles the ocean? on whose margin the red buds of honey-yielding
trees are eclipsed by swarms of bees, whose beauty expands with the
junction of numerous streams. What is like the ocean, inhaling the
perfume of the Paryata (1), who was compelled to yield as tribute, wine,
wealth, and ambrosia (2)? Such is the ocean!—may he protect thee.

Of a mighty gift, this is the memorial. This lake enslaves the minds of
beholders, over whose expanse the varied feathered tribe skim with
delight, and whose banks are studded with every kind of tree. Falling
from the lofty-peaked mountain, enhancing the beauty of the scene, the
torrent rushes to the lake. The mighty sea-serpent (3), o’erspent with
toil in the churning of the ocean, repaired to this lake for repose.

On this earth’s surface was Maheswara (4), a mighty prince, during whose
sway the name of foe was never heard; whose fortune was known to the
eight quarters (5); on whose arm victory reclined for support. He was
the light of the land. The praises of the race of TWAST’HA (6) were
determined by Brahma’s own mouth.

Fair, filled with pride, sporting amidst the shoals of the lotos, is the
swan fed by his hand, from whose countenance issue rays of glory: such
was RAJA BHEEM (7), a skilful swimmer in the ocean of battle, even to
where the Ganges pours in her flood (8) did he go, whose abode is
_Avanti_ (9). With faces resplendent as the moon, on whose lips yet
marked with the wound of their husband’s teeth, the captive wives of his
foes, even in their hearts does Raja Bheem dwell. By his arm he removed
the apprehensions of his enemies; he considered them as errors to be
expunged. He appeared as if created of fire. He could instruct even the
navigator (10) of the ocean.

From him was descended RAJA BHOJ (11). How shall he be described; he,
who in the field of battle divided with his sword the elephant’s head,
the pearl from whose brain (12) now adorns his breast; who devours his
foe as does RAHOO (13) the sun or moon, who to the verge of space
erected edifices in token of victory?

From him was a son whose name was MAUN, who was surcharged with good
qualities, and with whom fortune took up her abode. One day he met an
aged man: his appearance made him reflect that his frame was as a
shadow, evanescent; that the spirit which did inhabit it was like the
seed of the scented _Kadama_ (14); that the riches of royalty were
brittle as a blade of grass; and that man was like a lamp exposed in the
light of day. Thus ruminating, for the sake of his race who had gone
before him, and for the sake of good works, he made this lake, whose
waters are expansive and depth unfathomable. When I look on this
ocean-like lake, I ask myself, if it may not be this which is destined
to cause the final doom (15).

The warriors and chiefs of RAJA MAUN (16) are men of skill and
valour—pure in their lives and faithful. RAJA MAUN is a heap of
virtues—the chief who enjoys his favour may court all the gifts of
fortune. When the head is inclined on his lotos foot, the grain of sand
which adheres becomes an ornament thereto. Such is the lake, shaded with
trees, frequented by birds, which the man of fortune, SRIMAN RAJA MAUN,
with great labour formed. By the name of its lord (_Maun_), that of the
lake (_surwur_) is known to the world. By him versed in the _alankara_,
PUSHHA, the son of NAGA BHUT, these stanzas have been framed. _Seventy
had elapsed beyond seven hundred years_ (_Samvatisir_), when the lord of
men, the KING OF MALWA (17) formed this lake. By SEVADIT, grandson of
KHETRI KARUG, were these lines cut [800].

_Note 1._—The Paryata is also called the Har-singar, or ‘_ornament of
the neck_,’ its flowers being made into collars and bracelets. Its aroma
is very delicate, and the blossom dies in a few hours.

_Note 2._—_Imrita_, the food of the immortals, obtained at the churning
of the ocean. The contest for this amongst the gods and demons is well
known. _Vrishpati_, or Sookra, regent of the planet Venus, on this
occasion lost an eye; and hence this Polyphemus has left the nickname of
_Sookracharya_ to all who have but one eye.

_Note 3._—His name _Matolae_.

_Note 4._—A celebrated name in the genealogies of the TAKSHAC _Pramara_,
of which the _Mori_ is a conspicuous _Sac’ha_ or branch. He was the
founder of the city of _Maheswar_, on the southern bank of the
Nehrbudda, which commands the ford leading from _Awinti_ and _Dhar_ (the
chief cities of the Mori Pramaras) to the Dekhan.

_Note 5._—The ancient Hindu divided his planisphere into eight quarters,
on which he placed the Koonjerries or elephants, for its support.

_Note 6._—TWASTHA, or Takshac, is the celebrated _Nagvansa_ of
antiquity. All are _Agniculas_. Cheetore, if erected by the Takshac
artist, has a right to the appellation Herbert has so singularly
assigned it, namely, _Tacsila_, built by the Tâk; it would be the
_Tâk-sillā-nagar_, the ‘stone fort of the Takshac,’ alluded to in No. 1.

_Note 7._—Raja Bheem, the lord of _Avanti_ or Oojein, the king of Malwa,
is especially celebrated in the Jain annals. A son of his led a numerous
colony into Marwar, and founded many cities between the Looni river and
the Aravulli mountains. _All became proselytes to the Jain faith_, and
their descendants, who are amongst the wealthiest and most numerous of
these mercantile sectarians, are proud of their Rajpoot descent; and it
tells when they are called to responsible offices, when they handle the
sword as well as the pen.

_Note 8._—_Ganga-Sagur_, or the Island at the mouth of the Ganges, is
specified by name as the limit of Bheem’s conquests. His memoria may yet
exist even there.

_Note 9._—_Avanti-Nat’h_, Lord of Avanti or Oojein.

_Note 10._—_Paryataca_, a navigator.

_Note 11._—Raja BHOJ. There is no more celebrated name than this in the
annals and literature of the Rajpoots; but there were three princes of
the Pramara race who bore it. The period of the last Raja Bhoj, father
of Udyadit, is now fixed, by various inscriptions discovered by me, A.D.
1035, and the dates of the two others I had from a leaf of a very
ancient Jain MS., obtained at the temple of Nadole, namely, S. 631 and
721, or A.D. 575 and 665. Abulfazil gives the period of the first Bhoj
as S. 545; but, as we find that valuable MS. of the period of the last
BHOJ confirmed by the date of this inscription of his son MAUN, namely,
S. 770, we may put perfect confidence in it, and now consider the
periods of the three, namely, S. 631, 721, and 1091—A.D. 567, 665, and
1035—as fixed points in Rajpoot chronology.

_Note 12._—In the head of that class of elephants called Bhadra, the
Hindoo says, there is always a large pearl.

_Note 13._—The monster Rahoo of the Rajpoot, who swallows the sun and
moon, _causing eclipses_, is _Fenris_, the wolf of the Scandinavians.
The _Asi_ carried the same ideas West, which they taught within the

_Note 14._—Kadama is a very delicate flower, that decays almost

_Note 15._—_Maha-pralaya!_

_Note 16._—The MS. annals of the Rana’s family state that their founder,
Bappa, conquered Cheetore from MAUN MORI. This inscription is therefore
invaluable as establishing the era of the conquest of [801] Cheetore by
the Gehlotes, and which was immediately following the first irruption of
the arms of Islam, as rendered in the annals of Mewar.

_Note 17._—As RAJA MAUN is called _King of Malwa_, it is evident that
Cheetore had superseded both Dhar and Awinti as the seat of power. A
palace of _Maun Mori_ is still shown as one of the antiquities in


Footnote 4.30a.3:

  [For this Inscription see _ASR_, Progress Report West Circle, 1903-4
  p. 56.]



                                 No. IV

Inscription in the Devanagari character, discovered in January 1822 in
    Puttun Somnat’h, on the coast of the Saurashtra peninsula, fixing
    the era of the sovereigns of BALABHI, the ‘_Balhara kings of

Adoration to the Lord of all, to _the light of the universe_(1).
Adoration to the form indescribable; Him! at whose feet all kneel.

In the year of Mohummud 662, and in that of Vicrama 1320, and that of
Srimad Balabhi 945, and the Siva-Singa Samvat 151, Sunday, the 13th
(_badi_) of the month Asar (2).

The chiefs of Anhulpoor Patun obeyed by numerous princes (here a string
of titles), Bhataric Srimad Arjuna Deva (3), of Chauluc race, his
minister Sri Maldeva, with all the officers of government, together with
_Hormuz of Belacool_, of the government of _Ameer Rookn-oo-Din_, and of
_Khwaja Ibrahim_ of _Hormuz_, son of the Admiral (_Nakhoda_)
_Noor-oo-Din Feeroz_, together with the CHAURA chieftains Palookdeva,
Ranik Sri Someswadeva, Ramdeva, Bheemsing, and all the Chauras and other
tribes of rank being assembled (4);

NANSI RAJA, of the Chaura race, inhabiting _Deo Puttun_ (5), assembling
all the merchants, established ordinances for the repairs and the
support of the temples, in order that flowers, oil, and water should be
regularly supplied to _Rutna-iswara_ (6), _Choul-iswara_ (7), and the
shrine of _Pulinda Devi_ (8), and the rest, and for the purpose of
erecting a wall round the temple of Somnat’h, with a gateway to the
north. Keelndeo, son of Modula, and Loonsi, son of Johan, both of the
Chaura race, together with the two merchants, Balji and Kurna, bestowed
the weekly profits of the market for this purpose. While sun and moon
endure, let it not be resumed. Feeroz is commanded to see this order
obeyed, and that the customary offerings on festivals are continued, and
that all surplus offerings and gifts be placed in the treasury for the
purposes afore-named. The Chaura chiefs present, and the Admiral
Noor-oo-Din, are commanded to see these orders executed on all classes.
Heaven will be the lot of the obedient; hell to the breaker of this


_Note 1._—The invocation, which was long, has been omitted by me. But
this is sufficient to show that BAL-NAT’H, the deity worshipped in
PUTTUN SOMNAT’H, ‘the city of the lord of the Moon,’ was the sun-god
_Bal_. Hence the title of the dynasties which ruled this region,
BAL-CA-RAE, ‘the princes of Bal,’ and hence the capital BALICAPOOR, ‘the
city of the sun,’ familiarly written _Balabhi_, whose ruins, as well as
this inscription, rewarded a long journey. The Rana’s ancestors, the
_Suryas_, or ‘sun-worshippers,’ gave their name to the peninsula
Saurashtra, or Syria, and the dynasties of CHAURA, and CHAULUC, or
SOLANKI, who succeeded them on their expulsion by the Parthians,
retained the title of BALICARAES, corrupted by Renaudot’s Arabian
travellers into BALHARA [802].

_Note 2._—The importance of the discovery of these _new eras_ has
already been descanted on in the annals. S. 1320-945, the date of this
inscription = 375 of Vicrama for the first of the Balabhi era; and
1320-151 gives S. 1169 for the establishment of the _Sevasinga_
era—established by the Gohils of the island of Deo, of whom I have
another memorial, dated 927 Balabhi Samvat. The Gohils, Chauras, and
Gehlotes are all of one stock.

_Note 3._—Arjuna-Deva, _Chaluc_, was prince of Anhulpoor or Anhulwarra,
founded by Vanraj Chaura in S. 802—henceforth the capital of the
Balica-raes after the destruction of Balabhi.

_Note 4._—This evinces that Anhulwarra was still the emporium of
commerce which the travellers of Renaudot and Edrisi describe.

_Note 5._—From this it is evident that the Islandic Deo was a dependent
fief of Anhulwarra.]

_Note 6._—The great temple of Somnath.

_Note 7._—The tutelary divinity of the Chauluc race.

_Note 8._—The goddess of the Bhil tribes.


                                 No. V

Inscription from the ruins of Aitpoor.[4.30a.6]

In Samvatsir 1034, the 16th of the month Bysak, was erected this
dwelling[4.30a.7] of Nanukswami.

From Anundpoor came he of Brahmin[4.30a.8] race (may he flourish), Muhee
Deva Sri Goha Dit, from whom became famous on the earth the Gohil tribe:

2. Bhoj.

3. Mahindra.

4. Naga.

5. Syeela.

6. Aprajit.

7. Mahindra, no equal as a warrior did then exist on the earth’s

8. Kalbhoj was resplendent as the sun.[4.30a.9]

9. Khoman, an unequalled warrior; from him

10. Bhirtrpad, the Tiluk of the three worlds; and from whom was

11. Singji; whose Ranee Maha Lakmee, of the warlike race of Rashtra
(Rahtore), and from her was born:

12. Sri Ullut. To him who subdued the earth and became its lord, was
born Haria Devi: her praise was known in Hurspoora; and from her was
born a mighty warrior in whose arm victory reposed; the Khetri of the
field of battle, who broke the confederacy of his foes, and from the
tree of whose fortune riches were the fruit: an altar of learning; from
him was

13. Nirvahana. By the daughter of Sri Jaijah, of Chauhana race, was born

14. Salvahana.

Such were their (the princes whose names are given) fortunes which I
have related. From him was born [803],

15. Secti Koomar. How can he be described?—He who conquered and made his
own the three qualifications (_sacti_);[4.30a.10] whose fortunes
equalled those of Bhirtrpad. In the abode of wealth Sri Aitpoor, which
he had made his dwelling, surrounded by a crowd of princes; the
_kulpdroom_ to his people; whose foot-soldiers are many; with vaults of
treasure—whose fortunes have ascended to heaven—whose city derives its
beauty from the intercourse of merchants; and in which there is but one
single evil, the killing darts from the bright eyes of beauty, carrying
destruction to the vassals of the prince.[4.30a.11]


Footnote 4.30a.4:

  [See _IA_, xi. 242 f.]

Footnote 4.30a.6:

  [This name is wrongly transliterated. It is Ātapura, now Ād, Āhad or
  Āhar, 2 miles E. of Udaipur (_IA_, xxxix., 1910, p. 186 ff.).]

Footnote 4.30a.7:


Footnote 4.30a.8:

  Vipra cula.

Footnote 4.30a.9:


Footnote 4.30a.10:

                        1.         ┐

                        2.         │ Three
                        Ootchha.     Sactis.

                        3. Muntri. ┘

Footnote 4.30a.11:

  [Erskine, who obtained a correct copy of this Inscription from Pandit
  Gaurishankar H. Ojha, writes: “In his translation Tod left out several
  names, namely, Mattat, Khumān II., Mahāyak, Khumān III., and Bhartari
  Bhat II.; but with the help of a copy recently discovered at Māndal in
  the house of a descendant of the Pandit whom Tod employed, it has been
  possible to supply the omissions, and it may be added that these names
  are confirmed by other inscriptions” (ii. A. 14). Erskine gives a
  corrected list of the Chiefs of Mewār in ii. B. 8 ff.]


                                 No. VI

 Inscription of Kumar Pal Solanki, in the Mindra of Brimha, in Cheetore,
            recording his conquest of Salpoori, in the Punjab.

To him who takes delight in the abode of waters; from whose braided
locks ambrosial drops continually descend; even this Mahadeva, may he
protect thee!

He of Chaulac tribe, having innumerable gems of ancestry, flowing from a
sea of splendour, was Moolraj, sovereign of the earth.

What did he resemble, whose renown was bright as a fair sparkling gem,
diffusing happiness and ease to the sons of the earth? Many mighty
princes there were of his line; but none before had made the great

Generations after him, in the lapse of many years, was Sid Raj, a name
known to the world; whose frame was encased in the riches of victory,
and whose deeds were sounded over the curtain of the earth; and who, by
the fire of his own frame and fortune, heaped up unconsumable wealth.

After him was Kumar Pal Deo. What was he like, who by the strength of
his invincible mind crushed all his foes; whose commands the other
sovereigns of the earth placed on their fore-heads; who compelled the
lord of Sacambhari to bow at his feet: who in person carried his arms to
Sewaluk, making the mountain lords to bow before him, even in the city
of Salpoori?

On the mountain Chutterkote ... ar, the lord of men, in sport placed
this [writing] amidst the abode of the gods: even on its pinnacle did he
place it. Why? That it might be beyond the reach of the hands of fools!

As Nissa-Nath, the lord who rules the night, looking on the faces of the
fair Kamunis below, feels envious of their fairness, and ashamed of the
dark spots on his own countenance, even so does Chutterkote blush at
seeing this (Prasishta) on her pinnacle.

_Samvat_ 1207 (month and day broken off) [804].[4.30a.12]


Footnote 4.30a.12:

  [See _Epigraphia Indica_, ii. 422 ff.]



                                No. VII

         Inscriptions on copper-plates found at Nadole relative
                         to the Chohan princes.

The treasury of knowledge of the Almighty (JINA) cuts the knots and
intentions of mankind. Pride, conceit, desire, anger, avarice. It is a
partition to the three[4.30a.13] worlds. Such is MAHAVIRA:[4.30a.14] may
he grant thee happiness!

In ancient times the exalted race of Chohan had sovereignty to the
bounds of ocean; and in NADOLE swayed Lacshman, Raja. He had a son named
LOHIA; and his BULRAJ, his VIGRAHA PAL; from him sprung MAHINDRA DEVA;
his son was SRI ANHULA, the chief amongst the princes of his time, whose
fortunes were known to all. His son was SRI BAL PRESAD; but having no
issue, his younger brother, JAITR RAJ, succeeded. His son was PRITHWI
PAL, endued with strength and fiery qualities; but he having no issue,
was succeeded by his younger brother JUL; he by his brother MAUN RAJA,
the abode of fortune. His son was ALANDEVA.[4.30a.15] When he mounted
the throne, he reflected this world was a fable: that this frame,
composed of unclean elements, of flesh, blood, and dust, was brought to
existence in pain. Versed in the books of faith, he reflected on the
evanescence of youth, resembling the scintillation of the
fire-fly;[4.30a.16] that riches were as the dew-drop on the lotos-leaf,
for a moment resembling the pearl, but soon to disappear. Thus
meditating, he commanded his servants, and sent them forth to his
chieftains, to desire them to bestow happiness on others, and to walk in
the paths of faith.

In Samvat 1218, in the month of Sawun the 29th,[4.30a.17] performing the
sacrifice to fire, and pouring forth libations to the dispeller of
darkness, he bathed the image of the omniscient, the lord of things
which move and are immovable, Sudasiva, with the _panchamrit_[4.30a.18]
and made the gifts of gold, grain, and clothes to his spiritual teacher,
preceptor, and the Brahmins to their hearts’ desire. Taking _til_ in his
hand, with rings on his finger of the _cusa_ (grass), holding water and
rice in the palm of his hand, he made a gift of five _moodras_ monthly
in perpetuity to the _Sandera Gatcha_[4.30a.19] for saffron,
sandal-wood, and ghee for the service of the temple of MAHAVIRA in the
white market (_mandra_) of the town. Hence this copper-plate. This
charity which I have bestowed will continue as long as the SANDERA
GATCHA exist to receive, and my issue to grant it.

To whoever may rule hereafter I touch their hands, that it may be
perpetual. Whoever bestows charity will live sixty thousand years in
heaven; whoever resumes it, the like in hell!

Of Pragvavansa,[4.30a.20] his name Dhurnidhur, his son Kurmchund being
minister, and the _sastri_ Munorut Ram, with his sons Visala and
Sridhara, by writing this inscription made his name resplendent. By SRI
ALAN’S own hand was this copper-plate bestowed. Samvat 1218

TREATY between the Honourable the English East-India Company and
    Maharana Bheem Sing, Rana of Oudeepoor, concluded by Mr. Charles
    Theophilus Metcalfe on the part of the Honourable Company, in virtue
    of full powers granted by his Excellency the Most Noble the Marquis
    of Hastings, K.G., Governor-General, and by Thakoor Ajeet Sing on
    the part of the Maharana, in virtue of full powers conferred by the
    Maharana aforesaid.

_First Article._—There shall be perpetual friendship, alliance, and
unity of interests between the two states, from generation to
generation, and the friends and enemies of one shall be the friends and
enemies of both.

_Second Article._—The British Government engages to protect the
principality and territory of Oudeepoor.

_Third Article._—The Maharana of Oudeepoor will always act in
subordinate co-operation with the British Government, and acknowledge
its supremacy, and will not have any connection with other chiefs or

_Fourth Article._—The Maharana of Oudeepoor will not enter into any
negotiation with any chief or state without the knowledge and sanction
of the British Government; but his usual amicable correspondence with
friends and relations shall continue.

_Fifth Article._—The Maharana of Oudeepoor will not commit aggressions
upon any one; and if by accident a dispute arise with any one, it shall
be submitted to the arbitration and award of the British Government.

_Sixth Article._—One-fourth of the revenue of the actual territory of
Oudeepoor shall be paid annually to the British Government as tribute
for five years; and after that term three-eighths in perpetuity. The
Maharana will not have connection with any other power on account of
tribute, and if any one advance claims of that nature, the British
Government engages to reply to them.

_Seventh Article._—Whereas the Maharana represents that portions of the
dominions of Oudeepoor have fallen, by improper means, into the
possession of others, and solicits the restitution of those places: the
British Government from a want of accurate information is not able to
enter into any positive engagement on this subject; but will always keep
in view the renovation of the prosperity of the state of Oudeepoor, and
after ascertaining the nature of each case, will use its best exertions
for the accomplishment of the object, on every occasion on which it may
be proper to do so. Whatever places may thus be restored to the state of
Oudeepoor by the aid of the British Government, three-eighths of their
revenues shall be paid in perpetuity to the British Government.

_Eighth Article._—The troops of the state of Oudeepoor shall be
furnished according to its means, at the requisition of the British

_Ninth Article._—The Maharana of Oudeepoor shall always be absolute
ruler of his own country, and the British jurisdiction shall not be
introduced into that principality.

_Tenth Article._—The present treaty of ten articles having been
concluded at Dihlee, and signed and sealed by Mr. Charles Theophilus
Metcalfe and Thakoor Ajeet Sing Buhadoor [806], the ratifications of the
same, by his Excellency the Most Noble the Governor-General, and
Maharana Bheem Sing, shall be mutually delivered within a month from
this date.

Done at Dihlee, this thirteenth day of January, A.D. 1818.

                                   (_Signed_) C. T. METCALFE (L.S.).
                                        THAKOOR AJEET SING (L.S.)


  _To face page 928._


Footnote 4.30a.13:

  Tribhawun-loca; or Patala, Mirtha, Swerga.

Footnote 4.30a.14:

  _Mahavira_, to whom the temple was thus endowed by the Chohan prince,
  follower of Siva, was the last of the twenty-four Jinas, or apostles
  of the Jains.

Footnote 4.30a.15:

  The prince being the twelfth from Lacshman, allowing twenty-two years
  to a reign, 264-1218; date of inscription, S. 954, or A.D. 898, the
  period of Lacshman.

Footnote 4.30a.16:


Footnote 4.30a.17:

  _Sudi choudus._

Footnote 4.30a.18:

  Milk, curds, clarified butter, honey, butter, and sugar.

Footnote 4.30a.19:

  One of eighty-four divisions of Jain tribes.

Footnote 4.30a.20:

  Poorval, a branch of the Oswal race of Jain laity.

Footnote 4.30a.21:

  [See _Epigraphia Indica_ ii. 422 ff.]


                                 BOOK V
                            ANNALS OF MĀRWĀR

                               CHAPTER 1

=Etymology of Mārwār.=—Marwar is a corruption of Maruwar, classically
Marusthali or Marusthan, ‘the region of death.’ It is also called
Marudesa, whence the unintelligible Mardes of the early Muhammadan
writers. The bards frequently style it Mordhar, which is synonymous with
Marudesa, or, when it suits their rhyme, simply Maru. Though now
restricted to the country subject to the Rathor race, its ancient and
appropriate application comprehended the entire ‘desert,’ from the
Sutlej to the ocean.

=The Rāthors.=—A concise genealogical sketch of the Rathor rulers of
Marwar has already been given;[5.1.1] we shall therefore briefly pass
over those times “when a genealogical tree would strike root in any
soil”; when the ambition of the Rathors, whose branches (_sakha_) spread
rapidly over ‘the region of death,’ was easily gratified with a solar
[2] pedigree. As it is desirable, however, to record their own opinions
regarding their origin, we shall make extracts from the chronicles
(hereafter enumerated), instead of fusing the whole into one mass, as in
the Annals of Mewar. The reader will occasionally be presented with
simple translations of whatever is most interesting in the Rathor

=Authorities.=—Let us begin with a statement of the author’s
authorities; first, a genealogical roll of the Rathors, furnished by a
Yati, or Jain priest, from the temple of Narlai.[5.1.2] This roll is
about fifty feet in length, commencing, as usual, with a theogony,
followed by the production of the ‘first Rathor from the spine (_rahat_)
of Indra,’[5.1.3] the nominal father being ‘Yavanaswa, prince of
Parlipur.’ Of the topography of Parlipur, the Rathors have no other
notion than that it was in the north; but in the declared race of their
progenitor, a Yavan prince, of the Aswa or Asi tribe,[5.1.4] we have a
proof of the Scythic origin of this Rajput family.

The chronicle proceeds with the foundation of Kanyakubja,[5.1.5] or
Kanauj, and the origin of Kama-dhwaja[5.1.6] (_vulgo_ Kamdhuj), the
titular appellation of its princes, and concludes with the thirteen
great Sakha, or ramifications of the Rathors, and their Gotracharya, or
genealogical creed.[5.1.7]

Another roll, of considerable antiquity, commences in the fabulous age,
with a long string of names, without facts; its sole value consists in
the esteem in which the tribe holds it. We may omit all that precedes
Nain Pal, who, in the year S. 526 (A.D. 470[5.1.8]), conquered Kanauj,
slaying its monarch Ajaipal; from which period the race was termed
Kanaujia Rathor. The genealogy proceeds to Jaichand, the last monarch of
Kanauj; relates the emigration of his nephew Siahji, or Sivaji, and his
establishment in the desert (Maruwar), with a handful of his brethren (a
wreck of the mighty kingdom of Kanauj); and terminates with the death of
Raja Jaswant Singh in S. 1735 (A.D. 1679), describing every branch and
scion, until we see them spreading over Maru [3].

Genealogy ceases to be an uninteresting pursuit when it enables us to
mark the progress of animal vegetation, from the germ to the complete
development of the tree, until the land is overshadowed with its
branches; and bare as is the chronicle to the moralist or historian, it
exhibits to the observer of the powers of the animal economy, data which
the annals of no other people on earth can furnish. In A.D. 1193 we see
the throne of Jaichand overturned; his nephew, with a handful of
retainers, taking service with a petty chieftain in the Indian desert.
In less than four centuries we find the descendants of these exiles of
the Ganges occupying nearly the whole of the desert; having founded
three capitals, studded the land with the castles of its feudality, and
bringing into the field fifty thousand men, _ek bap ka beta_, ‘the sons
of one father,’ to combat the emperor of Delhi. What a contrast does
their unnoticed growth present to that of the Islamite conquerors of
Kanauj, of whom five dynasties passed away in ignorance of the renovated
existence of the Rathor, until the ambition of Sher Shah brought him
into contact with the descendants of Siahji, whose valour caused him to
exclaim “he had nearly lost the crown of India for a handful of barley,”
in allusion to the poverty of their land![5.1.9]

What a sensation does it not excite when we know that a sentiment of
kindred pervades every individual of this immense affiliated body, who
can point out, in the great tree, the branch of his origin, whilst not
one is too remote from the main stem to forget its pristine connexion
with it! The moral sympathies created by such a system pass unheeded by
the chronicler, who must deem it futile to describe what all sensibly
feel, and which renders his page, albeit little more than a string of
names, one of paramount interest to the ‘sons of Siahji.’

The third authority is the Suraj Prakas (Surya Prakasa), composed by the
bard Karnidhan, during the reign and by command of Raja Abhai Singh.
This poetic history, comprised in 7500 stanzas, was copied from the
original manuscript, and sent to me by Raja Man, in the year
1820.[5.1.10] As usual, the Kavya (bard) commences with the origin of
all things, tracing the Rathors from the creation down to Sumitra; from
whence is a blank until he recommences with the name of Kamdhuj, which
appears to have been the title assumed by Nain Pal, on his conquest of
Kanauj. Although Karnidhan must have taken his facts from the [4] royal
records, they correspond very well with the roll from Narlai. The bard
is, however, in a great hurry to bring the founder of the Rathors into
Marwar, and slurs over the defeat and death of Jaichand. Nor does he
dwell long on his descendants, though he enumerates them all, and points
out the leading events until he reaches the reign of Jaswant Singh,
grandfather of Abhai Singh, who “commanded the bard to write the Suraj

The next authority is the Raj Rupak Akhyat, or ‘the royal relations.’
This work commences with a short account of the Suryavansa, from their
cradle at Ajodhya; then takes up Siahji’s migration, and in the same
strain as the preceding work, rapidly passes over all events until the
death of Raja Jaswant; but it becomes a perfect chronicle of events
during the minority of his successor Ajit, his eventful reign, and that
of Abhai Singh, to the conclusion of the war against Sarbuland Khan,
viceroy of Gujarat. Throwing aside the meagre historical introduction,
it is professedly a chronicle of the events from S. 1735 (A.D. 1679) to
S. 1787 (A.D. 1734), the period to which the Suraj Prakas is brought

A portion of the Bijai Vilas, a poem of 100,000 couplets, also fell into
my hands: it chiefly relates to the reign of the prince whose name it
bears, Bijai Singh, the son of Bakhta Singh. It details the civil wars
waged by Bijai Singh and his cousin Ram Singh (son of Abhai Singh), and
the consequent introduction of the Mahrattas into Marwar.

From a biographical work named simply Khyat, or ‘Story,’ I obtained that
portion which relates to the lives of Raja Udai Singh, the friend of
Akbar; his son Raja Gaj, and grandson Jaswant Singh. These sketches
exhibit in true colours the character of the Rathors.

Besides these, I caused to be drawn up by an intelligent man, who had
passed his life in office at Jodhpur, a memoir of transactions from the
death of Ajit Singh, in A.D. 1629, down to the treaty with the English
Government in A.D. 1818. The ancestors of the narrator had filled
offices of trust in the State, and he was a living chronicle both of the
past and present.

From these sources, from conversations with the reigning sovereign, his
nobles, his ambassadors, and subjects, materials were collected for this
sketch of the Rathors—barren, indeed, of events at first, but redundant
of them as we advance.

A genealogical table of the Rathors is added, showing the grand offsets,
whose [5] descendants constitute the feudal frèrage of the present day.
A glance at this table will show the claims of each house; and in its
present distracted condition, owing to civil broils, will enable the
paramount power to mediate, when necessary, with impartiality, in the
conflicting claims of the prince and his feudatories.

=Rāthor Origins.=—We shall not attempt to solve the question, whether
the Rathors are, or are not, Ravi-vansa, ‘Children of the Sun’; nor
shall we dispute either the birth or etymon of the first Rathor (from
the _rahat_ or spine of Indra), or search in the north for the kingdom
of the nominal father; but be content to conclude that this celestial
interference in the household concerns of the Parlipur prince was
invented to cover some disgrace. The name of Yavana, with the adjunct
Aswa or Asi, clearly indicates the Indo-Scythic ‘barbarian’ from beyond
the Indus. In the genealogy of the Lunar races descended of Budha and
Ila (Mercury and the Earth—see Table I. Vol. I.), the five sons of
Bajaswa are made to people the countries on and beyond the Indus; and in
the scanty records of Alexander’s invasion mention is made of many
races, as the Assasenae and Assakenoi, still dwelling in these regions.

This period was fruitful in change to the old-established dynasties of
the Hindu continent, when numerous races of barbarians, namely, Huns,
Parthians, and Getae, had fixed colonies on her western and northern

“In S. 526 (A.D. 470) Nain Pal obtained Kanauj, from which period the
Rathors assumed the title of Kamdhuj. His son was Padarath,[5.1.12] his
Punja, from whom sprung the thirteen great families, bearing the
patronymic Kamdhuj, namely:

“1st. Dharma Bambo: his descendants styled Danesra Kamdhuj.

“2nd. Banuda, who fought the Afghans at Kangra, and founded Abhaipur:
hence the Abhaipura Kamdhuj.

“3rd. Virachandra, who married the daughter of Hamira Chauhan, of
Anhilpur Patan; he had fourteen sons, who emigrated to the Deccan: his
descendants called Kapolia Kamdhuj.

“4th. Amrabijai, who married the daughter of the Pramara prince of
Koragarh[5.1.13] on the Ganges;—slew 16,000 Pramaras, and took
possession of Kora, whence the Kora Kamdhuj[5.1.14] [6].

“5th. Sujan Binod: his descendants Jarkhera Kamdhuj.

“6th. Padma, who conquered Orissa, and also Bogilana,[5.1.15] from Raja
Tejman Yadu.

“7th. Aihar, who took Bengal from the Yadus: hence Aihara Kamdhuj.

“8th. Bardeo; his elder brother offered him in appanage Benares, and
eighty-four townships; but he preferred founding a city, which he called
Parakhpur:[5.1.16] his descendants Parakh Kamdhuj.

“9th. Ugraprabhu, who made a pilgrimage to the shrine of Hinglaj
Chandel,[5.1.17] who, pleased with the severity of his penance, caused a
sword to ascend from the fountain, with which he conquered the southern
countries touching the ocean:[5.1.18] his descendants Chandela Kamdhuj.

“10th. Muktaman, who conquered possessions in the north from Bhan Tuar:
his descendants Bira Kamdhuj.

“11th. Bharat, at the age of sixty-one, conquered Kanaksar, under the
northern hills, from Rudrasen of the Bargujar tribe: his descendants
styled Bhariau Kamdhuj.

“12th. Alankal founded Khairoda; fought the Asuras (Muslims) on the
banks of the Attock: his descendants Kherodia Kamdhuj.

“13th. Chand obtained Tarapur in the north. He married a daughter of the
Chauhan of Tahera,[5.1.19] a city well known to the world: with her he
came to Benares.

“And thus the race of Surya multiplied.

“Bambo,[5.1.20] or Dharma-Bambo, sovereign of Kanauj, had a son,
Ajaichand.[5.1.21] For twenty-one generations they bore the titles of
Rao; afterwards that of Raja. Udaichand, Narpati, Kanaksen, Sahassal,
Meghsen, Birabhadra, Deosen, Bimalsen, Dansen, Mukund, Budha, Rajsen,
Tirpal, Sripunja, Bijaichand,[5.1.22] his son Jaichand, who became the
Naik of Kanauj, with the surname Dal Pangla.”

=Jaichand.=—Nothing is related of the actions of these princes, from the
conquest of Kanauj [7] by Nain Pal, in A.D. 470, and the establishment
of his thirteen grandsons in divers countries, until we reach Jaichand,
in whose person (A.D. 1193) terminated the Rathor sovereignty on the
Ganges; and we have only twenty-one names to fill up the space of seven
centuries, although the testimony on which it is given[5.1.23] asserts
there were twenty-one princes bearing the title of Rao prior to the
assumption of that of Raja. But the important information is omitted as
to who was the first to assume this title. There are names in the Yati’s
roll that are not in the Suraj Prakas, which we have followed; and one
of these, Rangatdhwaj, is said to have overcome Jasraj Tuar, king of
Delhi, for whose period we have correct data: yet we cannot incorporate
the names in the Yati’s roll with that just given without vitiating
each; and as we have no facts, it is useless to perplex ourselves with a
barren genealogy. But we can assert that it must have been a splendid
dynasty, and that their actions, from the conqueror Nain Pal to the last
prince, Jaichand, were well deserving of commemoration. That they were
commemorated in written records there cannot be a doubt; for the trade
of the bardic chroniclers in India has flourished in all ages.

=The City of Kanauj.=—Although we have abundant authority to assert the
grandeur of the kingdom of Kanauj[5.1.24] at the period of its
extinction, both from the bard Chand and the concurrent testimony of
Muhammadan authors, yet are we astonished at the description of the
capital, attested not only by the annals of the Rathors, but by those of
their antagonists, the Chauhans.

The circumvallation of Kanauj covered a space of more than thirty miles;
and its numerous forces obtained for its prince the epithet of ‘Dal
Pangla,’ meaning that the mighty host (_Dal_) was lame or had a halt in
its movements owing to its numbers, of which Chand observes that in the
march “the van had reached their ground ere the rear had moved off.” The
Suraj Prakas gives the amount of this army, which in numbers might
compete with the most potent which, in ancient or modern times, was ever
sent into the field. “Eighty thousand men in armour; thirty thousand
horse covered with _pakhar_, or quilted mail; three hundred thousand
Paiks or infantry; and of bow-men and battle-axes two hundred thousand;
besides a cloud of elephants bearing warriors” [8].

This immense army was to oppose the Yavana beyond the Indus; for, as the
chronicle says, “The king of Gor and Irak crossed the Attock. There Jai
Singh met the conflict, when the Nilab changed its name to
Surkhab.[5.1.25] There was the Ethiopic (_Habshi_) king, and the skilful
Frank learned in all arts,[5.1.26] overcome by the lord of Kanauj.”

The chronicles of the Chauhans, the sworn foe of the Rathors, repeat the
greatness of the monarch of Kanauj, and give him the title of
“Mandalika.”[5.1.27] They affirm that he overcame the king of the
north,[5.1.28] making eight tributary kings prisoners; that he twice
defeated Siddhraj, king of Anhilwara, and extended his dominions south
of the Nerbudda, and that at length, in the fulness of his pride, he had
divine honours paid him in the rite Swayamvara.[5.1.29] This
distinction, which involves the most august ceremony, and is held as a
virtual assumption of universal supremacy, had in all ages been attended
with disaster. In the rite of Swayamvara every office, down to the
scullion of the Rasora, or banquet-hall, must be performed by royal
personages; nor had it been attempted by any of the dynasties which
ruled India since the Pandu: not even Vikrama, though he introduced his
own era, had the audacity to attempt what the Rathor determined to
execute. All India was agitated by the accounts of the magnificence of
the preparations, and circular invitations were despatched to every
prince, inviting him to assist at the pompous ceremony, which was to
conclude with the nuptials of the raja’s only daughter, who, according
to the customs of those days, would select her future lord from the
assembled chivalry of India. The Chauhan bard describes the revelry and
magnificence of the scene: the splendour of the Yajnasala, or ‘hall of
sacrifice,’ surpassing all powers of description; in which were
assembled all the princes of India, “save the lord of the Chauhans, and
Samara of Mewar,” who, scorning this assumption of supremacy, Jaichand
made their effigies in gold, assigning to them the most servile posts;
that of the king of the Chauhans being Poliya, or ‘porter of the hall.’
Prithiraj, whose life was one succession of feats of arms and gallantry,
had a double motive for action—love and revenge. He determined to enjoy
both, or perish in the attempt; “to spoil the sacrifice and bear away
the fair of Kanauj from its halls, though beset [9] by all the heroes of
Hind.” The details of this exploit form the most spirited of the
sixty-nine books of the bard. The Chauhan executed his purpose, and,
with the élite of the warriors of Delhi, bore off the princess in open
day from Kanauj. A desperate running-fight of five days took place. To
use the words of the bard, “he preserved his prize; he gained immortal
renown, but he lost the sinews of Delhi.” So did Jaichand those of
Kanauj; and each, who had singly repelled all attacks of the kings, fell
in turn a prey to the Ghori Sultan,[5.1.30] who skilfully availed
himself of these international feuds, to make a permanent conquest of

=The Great States of North India.=—We may here briefly describe the
state of Hindustan at this epoch, and for centuries previous to the
invasions of Mahmud.

There were four great kingdoms, namely—

 1. Delhi, under the Tuars and Chauhans.
 2. Kanauj, under the Rathors.
 3. Mewar, under the Guhilots.
 4. Anhilwara, under the Chauras and Solankis.

To one or other of these States the numerous petty princes of India
paid homage and feudal service. The boundary between Delhi and Kanauj
was the Kalinadi, or ‘black stream’; the Kalindi of the Greek
geographers.[5.1.31] Delhi claimed supremacy over all the countries
westward to the Indus, embracing the lands watered by its arms, from
the foot of the Himalaya,—the desert—to the Aravalli chain. The
Chauhan king, successor to the Tuars, enumerated one hundred and eight
great vassals, many of whom were subordinate princes.

The power of Kanauj extended north to the foot of the Snowy mountains;
eastward to Kasi (Benares); and across the Chambal to the lands of the
Chandel (now Bundelkhand); on the south its possessions came in contact
with Mewar.

Mewar, or Madhyawar, the ‘central region,’[5.1.32] was bounded to the
north by the Aravalli, to the south by the Pramaras of Dhar (dependent
on Kanauj), and westward by Anhilwara, which State was bounded by the
ocean to the south, the Indus on the west, and the desert to the north.

There are records of great wars amongst all these princes. The Chauhans
and Guhilots, whose dominions were contiguous, were generally allies,
and the Rathors and Tuars (predecessors of the Chauhans), who were only
divided by the Kalinadi, often dyed it with their blood. Yet this
warfare was never of an [10] exterminating kind; a marriage quenched a
feud, and they remained friends until some new cause of strife arose.

If, at the period preceding Mahmud, the traveller had journeyed through
the courts of Europe, and taken the line of route, in subsequent ages
pursued by Timur, by Byzantium, through Ghazni (adorned with the spoils
of India), to Delhi, Kanauj, and Anhilwara, how superior in all that
constitutes civilization would the Rajput princes have appeared to
him!—in arts immeasurably so; in arms by no means inferior. At that
epoch, in the west, as in the east, every State was governed on feudal
principles. Happily for Europe, the democratical principle gained
admittance, and imparted a new character to her institutions; while the
third estate of India, indeed of Asia, remained permanently excluded
from all share in the government which was supported by its labour,
every pursuit but that of arms being deemed ignoble. To this cause, and
the endless wars which feudality engendered, Rajput nationality fell a
victim when attacked by the means at command of the despotic kings of
the north.

=The Invasion of Shihābu-d-dīn.=—Shihabu-d-din, king of Ghor, taking
advantage of these dissensions, invaded India. He first encountered
Prithiraj, the Chauhan king of Delhi, the outwork and bulwark of India,
which fell. Shihabu-d-din then attacked Jaichand, who was weakened by
the previous struggle. Kanauj put forth all her strength, but in vain;
and her monarch was the last son of “the Yavana of Parlipur” who ruled
on the banks of the Ganges. He met a death congenial to the Hindu, being
drowned in the sacred stream in attempting to escape.[5.1.33]

This event happened in S. 1249 (A.D. 1193), from which period the
overgrown, gorgeous Kanauj ceased to be a Hindu city, when the
“thirty-six races” of vassal princes, from the Himalaya to the Vindhya,
who served under the banners of Bardai Sena,[5.1.34] retired to their
patrimonial estates. But though the Rathor name ceased to exist on the
shores of the Ganges, destiny decreed that a scion should be preserved,
to produce in a less favoured land a long line of kings; that in
thirty-one generations his descendant, Raja Man, “Raj, Rajeswara,” ‘the
king, the lord of kings,’ should be as vainglorious of the sceptre of
Maru as either Jaichand when he commanded divine honours, or his still
more remote ancestor Nain Pal fourteen [11] centuries before, when he
erected his throne in Kanauj. The Rathor may well boast of his pedigree,
when he can trace it through a period of 1360 years, in lineal descent
from male to male; and contented with this, may leave to the mystic page
of the bard, or the interpolated pages of the Puranas, the period
preceding Nain Pal.


Footnote 5.1.1:

  See Vol. I. p. 105.

Footnote 5.1.2:

  An ancient town in Marwar [about 80 miles S.E. of Jodhpur city].

Footnote 5.1.3:

  [A folk etymology, the name being derived from Rāshtrakūta, which may
  mean the chief, as opposed to the rank and file of the Ratta dynasty;
  but it has also been connected with Reddi, a Dravidian caste in S.
  India (_BG_, i. Part i. 119, Part ii. 22 note, 178, 383 ff.).]

Footnote 5.1.4:

  One of the four tribes which overturned the Greek kingdom of Bactria.
  The ancient Hindu cosmographers claim the Aswa as a grand branch of
  their early family, and doubtless the Indo-Scythic people, from the
  Oxus to the Ganges, were one race.

Footnote 5.1.5:

  From _kubja_ (the spine) of the virgin (_kanya_) [referring to the
  legend of the hundred daughters of Kusanābha rendered crooked by

Footnote 5.1.6:

  Kama-dhwaja, ‘the banner of Cupid.’

Footnote 5.1.7:

  Gotama Gotra, Mardwandani Sakha, Sukracharya Guru, Garapatya Agni,
  Pankhani Devi.

Footnote 5.1.8:

  It is a singular fact, that there is no available date beyond the
  fourth century for any of the great Rajput families, all of whom are
  brought from the north. This was the period of one of the grand
  irruptions of the Getic races from Central Asia, who established
  kingdoms in the Panjab and on the Indus. Pal or Pali, the universal
  adjunct to every proper name, indicates the pastoral race of these
  invaders [?]. [The reason why the Rājput genealogies do not go back to
  an early date is that many of them were recruited from Gurjara and
  other foreign tribes. The tale of the origin of the Rāthors from
  Kanauj is a myth, as the dynasty of that place belonged to the
  Gahadvāla or Gaharwār clan. The object of the story was to affiliate
  the tribe to the heroic Jaichand (Smith, _EHI_, 385).]

Footnote 5.1.9:

  [See p. 835.]

Footnote 5.1.10:

  This manuscript is deposited in the library of the Royal Asiatic

Footnote 5.1.11:

  Cosmas. Annals of Mewār. Getae or Jat Inscription, Appendix, Vol. I.

Footnote 5.1.12:

  Called Bharat in the Yati’s roll; an error of one or other of the
  authorities in transcribing from the more ancient records.

Footnote 5.1.13:

  [In the Fatehpur District (_IGI_, xv. 398).]

Footnote 5.1.14:

  An inscription given in the _Transactions of the Royal Asiatic
  Society_ (vol. ix. p. 440), found at Kora, relates to a branch of the
  Kanauj family.

Footnote 5.1.15:

  [? Bāglān in Nāsik District, Bombay (_IGI_, vi. 190).]

Footnote 5.1.16:

  _Qu._ Parkar, towards the Indus?

Footnote 5.1.17:

  On the coast of Mekran.

Footnote 5.1.18:

  If we can credit these legends, we see the Rathor Rajputs spreading
  over all India. I give these bare facts _verbatim_, as some traces may
  yet remain of the races in those countries. [These are pure legends,
  see Smith, _EHI_, 377 ff.]

Footnote 5.1.19:

  [Bahra] a city often mentioned by Ferishta [i. Introd. lxxii.] in the
  early times of the Muhammadans.

Footnote 5.1.20:

  Naīn Pal must have preceded Dharma-Bambo by five or six generations.

Footnote 5.1.21:

  Called Abhaichand, in the Suraj Prakas.

Footnote 5.1.22:

  Also styled Bijaipal; classically Vijayapala, ‘Fosterer of Victory.’

Footnote 5.1.23:

  The Suraj Prakas.

Footnote 5.1.24:

  See Inscriptions of Jaichand, Vijayachand, and Kora, in the 9th and
  14th vols. of the _Asiatic Researches_.

Footnote 5.1.25:

  The Nilab, or ‘blue water,’ the Indus, changed its name to the
  ‘Redstream’ (Surkhab), or ‘ensanguined.’

Footnote 5.1.26:

  It is singular that Chand likewise mentions the Frank as being in the
  army of Shihabu-d-din, in the conquest of his sovereign Prithiraj. If
  this be true, it must have been a desultory or fugitive band of

Footnote 5.1.27:

  [Ruler of a district (_mandal_).]

Footnote 5.1.28:

  They thus style the kings west of the Indus.

Footnote 5.1.29:

  [The “Seonair” of the text seems to represent _swayamvara_, the rite
  of selection of her husband by a maiden.]

Footnote 5.1.30:

  [Shihābu-d-dīn, A.D. 1175-1206.]

Footnote 5.1.31:

  [The Kālindi River, the name of which was corrupted into Kālinadi,
  rises in the Muzaffarnagar District, and joins the Ganges near Kanauj,
  310 miles from its source (_IGI_, xiv. 309).]

Footnote 5.1.32:

  [The word Mewār represents the original Medapāta, “land of the Med
  tribe.” The bulk of the army of Chashtana, the Western Satrap, appears
  to have consisted of Mevas or Medas, from whose settlement in Central
  Rājputāna the province seems to have received its present name, Mewāda
  (_BG_, i. Part i. 33).]

Footnote 5.1.33:

  [His corpse was recognized by his false teeth, “a circumstance which
  throws some light on the state of manners” (Elphinstone 365).]

Footnote 5.1.34:

  Another title of the monarch of Kanauj, “the bard of the host,” from
  which we are led to understand he was as well versed in the poetic art
  as his rival, the Chauhan prince of Delhi.


                               CHAPTER 2

=Migration of the Rāthors into Rājputāna.=—In S. 1268 (A.D. 1212),
eighteen years subsequent to the overthrow of Kanauj, Siahji and Setram,
grandsons of its last monarch, abandoned the land of their birth, and
with two hundred retainers, the wreck of their vassalage, journeyed
westward to the desert, with the intent, according to some of the
chronicles, of making a pilgrimage to the shrine of Dwarka;[5.2.1] but
according to others, and with more probability, to carve their fortunes
in fresh fields, unscathed by the luxuries in which they had been tried,
and proud in their poverty and sole heritage, the glory of Kanauj [12].

=The Tribes of Rājputāna.=—Let us rapidly sketch the geography of the
tribes over whom it was destined these emigrants of the Ganges should
obtain the mastery, from the Jumna to the Indus, and the Gara River to
the Aravalli hills. First, on the east, the Kachhwahas, under Malesi,
whose father, Rao Pajun, was killed in the war of Kanauj. Ajmer,
Sambhar, and the best lands of the Chauhans fell rapidly to the
Islamite—though the strongholds of the Aravalli yet sheltered some, and
Nadol continued for a century more to be governed by a descendant of
Bisaldeo. Mansi, Rana of the Indha[5.2.2] tribe, a branch of the
Parihars, still held Mandor, and the various Bhumias around paid him a
feudal subjection as the first chief of the desert. Northward, about
Nagor, lived the community of the Mohils (a name now extinct), whose
chief place was Aurint, on which depended 1440 villages. The whole of
the tracts now occupied by Bikaner to Bhatner were partitioned into
petty republics of Getae or Jats, whose history will hereafter be
related. Thence to the Gara River, the Johyas, Dahyas, Kathis, Langahas,
and other tribes whose names are now obliterated, partly by the sword,
partly by conversion to Islamism. The Bhattis had for centuries been
established within the bounds they still inhabit, and little expected
that this handful of Rathors was destined to contract them. The Sodha
princes adjoined the Bhattis south, and the Jarejas occupied the valley
of the Indus and Cutch. The Solankis intervened between them and the
Pramaras of Abu and Chandravati, which completed the chain by junction
with Nadol. Various chieftains of the more ancient races, leading a life
of fearless independence, acknowledging an occasional submission to
their more powerful neighbours, were scattered throughout this space;
such as the Dabhis of Idar and Mewa; the Gohils of Kherdhar; the Deoras
of Sanchor; and Sonigiras of Jalor; the Mohils of Aurint; the Sankhlas
of Sandli, etc.; all of whom have either had their birthright seized by
the Rathor, or the few who have survived and yet retain them are
enrolled amongst their allodial vassals.

=The Exploits of Siāhji.=—The first exploit of Siahji was at Kulumad
(twenty miles west of the city of Bikaner, not then in existence), the
residence of a chieftain of the Solanki tribe. He received the royal
emigrants with kindness, and the latter repaid it by the offer of their
services to combat his enemy, the Jareja chieftain of Phulra, well known
in all the annals of the period, from the Sutlej to the ocean, as Lakha
Phulani, the most celebrated riever of Maru, whose castle of Phulra
stood amidst the almost inaccessible [13] sandhills of the desert. By
this timely succour the Solanki gained a victory over Lakha, but with
the loss of Setram and several of his band. In gratitude for this
service, the Solanki bestowed upon Siahji his sister in marriage, with
an ample dower; and he continued his route by Anhilwara Patan, where he
was hospitably entertained by its prince, to the shrine of Dwarka. It
was the good fortune of Siahji again to encounter Lakha, whose wandering
habits had brought him on a foray into the territory of Anhilwara.
Besides the love of glory and the ambition of maintaining the reputation
of his race, he had the stimulus of revenge, and that of a brother’s
blood. He was successful, though he lost a nephew, slaying Lakha in
single combat, which magnified his fame in all these regions, of which
Phulani was the scourge.

Flushed with success, we hear nothing of the completion of Siahji’s
pilgrimage; but obedient to the axiom of the Rajput, “get land,” we find
him on the banks of the Luni, exterminating, at a feast, the Dabhis of
Mewa,[5.2.3] and soon after the Gohils of Kherdhar,[5.2.4] whose chief,
Maheshdas, fell by the sword of the grandson of Jaichand. Here, in the
“land of Kher,” amidst the sandhills of the Luni (the salt-river of the
desert), from which the Gohils were expelled, Siahji planted the
standard of the Rathors.

At this period a community of Brahmans held the city and extensive lands
about Pali, from which they were termed Paliwal;[5.2.5] and being
greatly harassed by the incursions of the mountaineers, the Mers and
Minas, they called in the aid of Siahji’s band, which readily undertook
and executed the task of rescuing the Brahmans from their depredations.
Aware that they would be renewed, they offered Siahji lands to settle
amongst them, which were readily accepted; and here he had a son by the
Solankani, to whom he gave the name of Asvatthama. With her, it is
recorded, the suggestion originated to make himself lord of Pali; and it
affords another example of the disregard of the early Rajputs for the
sacred order, that on the Holi, or Saturnalia, he found an opportunity
to “obtain land,” putting to death the heads of this community, and
adding the district to his conquests [14]. Siahji outlived his treachery
only twelve months, leaving his acquisitions as a nucleus for further
additions to his children. He had three sons, Asvatthama, Soning, and

=Asvatthāma.=—One of the chronicles asserts that it was Asvatthama, the
successor of Siahji, who conquered “the land of Kher” from the Gohils.
By the same species of treachery by which his father attained Pali, he
lent his aid to establish his brother Soning in Idar. This small
principality, on the frontiers of Gujarat, then appertained, as did
Mewa, to the Dabhi race; and it was during the _matam_, or period of
mourning for one of its princes, that the young Rathor chose to obtain a
new settlement. His descendants are distinguished as the
Hathundia[5.2.6] Rathors. The third brother, Aja, carried his forays as
far as the extremity of the Saurashtra peninsula, where he decapitated
Bikamsi, the Chawara chieftain of Okhamandala,[5.2.7] and established
himself. From this act his branch became known as the ‘Vadhel’;[5.2.8]
and the Vadhels are still in considerable number in that furthest track
of ancient Hinduism called the “World’s End.”

Asvatthama died, leaving eight sons, who became the heads of clans,
namely, Duhar, Jopsi, Khampsao, Bhopsu, Dhandhal, Jethmall, Bandar, and
Uhar; of which, four, Duhar, Dhandhal, Jethmall, and Uhar, are yet

=Duhar or Dhūhada.=—Duhar succeeded Asvatthama. He made an unsuccessful
effort to recover Kanauj; and then attempted to wrest Mandor from the
Parihars, but “watered their lands with his blood.” He left seven sons,
namely, Raepal, Kiratpal, Behar, Pital, Jugel, Dalu, and Begar.

=Rāēpāl, Chhada, Thīda, Salkha, Biramdeo, Chonda.=—Raepal succeeded, and
revenged the death of his father, slaying the Parihar of Mandor, of
which he even obtained temporary possession. He had a progeny of
thirteen sons, who rapidly spread their issue over these regions. He was
succeeded by his son Kanhal [or Kānpāl], whose successor was his son
Jalhan; he was succeeded by his son Chhada, whose successor was his son
Thida. All these carried on a desperate warfare with, and made conquests
from, their neighbours. Chhada and Thida are mentioned as very
troublesome neighbours in the annals of the Bhattis of Jaisalmer, who
were compelled to carry the war against them into the “land of Kher.”
Rao Thida took the rich district of Bhinmal from the Sonigira, and made
other additions to his territory from the Deoras and Balechas [15]. He
was succeeded by Salakh or Salkha. His issue, the Salkhawats, now
Bhumias, are yet numerous both in Mewa and Rardara. Salkha was succeeded
by his son Biramdeo, who attacked the Johyas of the north, and fell in
battle. His descendants, styled Biramot and Bijawat, from another son
Bija, are numerous at Setru, Siwana, and Dechu. Biramdeo was succeeded
by his son Chonda, an important name in the annals of the Rathors.
Hitherto they had attracted notice by their valour and their raids,
whenever there was a prospect of success; but they had so multiplied in
eleven generations that they now essayed a higher flight. Collecting all
the branches bearing the name of Rathor, Chonda assaulted Mandor, slew
the Parihar prince, and planted the banners of Kanauj on the ancient
capital of Maru.

So fluctuating are the fortunes of the daring Rajput, ever courting
distinction and coveting _bhum_, ‘land,’ that but a short time before
this success, Chonda had been expelled from all the lands acquired by
his ancestors, and was indebted to the hospitality of a bard of the
Charan tribe, at Kalu; and they yet circulate the _kabit_, or quatrain,
made by him when, in the days of his greatness, he came and was refused
admittance to “the lord of Mandor”; he took post under the balcony, and
improvized a stanza, reminding him of the Charan of Kalu: “_Chonda nahīn
āwē chit, Khichar Kalu tanna? Bhup bhaya bhay-bhit, Mandawar ra mālya?_”
“Does not Chonda remember the porridge of Kalu, now that the lord of the
land looks so terrific from his balcony of Mandawar?” Once established
in Mandor, he ventured to assault the imperial garrison of Nagor. Here
he was also successful. Thence he carried his arms south, and placed his
garrison in Nadol, the capital of the province of Godwar. He married a
daughter of the Parihar prince,[5.2.9] who had the satisfaction to see
his grandson succeed to the throne of Mandor. Chonda was blessed with a
progeny of fourteen sons, growing up to manhood around him. Their names
were Ranmall,[5.2.10] Satta, Randhir, Aranyakanwal,[5.2.11] Punja, Bhim,
Kana, Ajo, Ramdeo, Bija, Sahasmall, Bagh, Lumba, Seoraj.

Chonda had also one daughter named Hansa, married to Lakha Rana of Mewar
[16], whose son was the celebrated Kumbha. It was this marriage which
caused that interference in the affairs of Mewar, which had such fatal
results to both States.[5.2.12]

The feud between his fourth son, Aranyakanwal, and the Bhatti prince of
Pugal, being deemed singularly illustrative of the Rajput character, has
been extracted from the annals of Jaisalmer, in another part of this
work.[5.2.13] The Rathor chronicler does not enter into details, but
merely states the result, as ultimately involving the death of
Chonda—simply that “he was slain at Nagor with one thousand Rajputs”;
and it is to the chronicles of Jaisalmer we are indebted for our
knowledge of the manner. Chonda acceded in S. 1438 (A.D. 1382), and was
slain in S. 1465 [A.D. 1408-9].

=Ranmall killed A.D. 1444.=—Ranmall succeeded. His mother was of the
Gohil tribe. In stature he was almost gigantic, and was the most
athletic of all the athletes of his nation. With the death of Chonda,
Nagor was again lost to the Rathors. Rana Lakha presented Ranmall with
the township of Darla and forty villages upon his sister’s marriage,
when he almost resided at Chitor, and was considered by the Rana as the
first of his chiefs. With the forces of Mewar added to his own, under
pretence of conveying a daughter to the viceroy of Ajmer, he introduced
his adherents into that renowned fortress, the ancient capital of the
Chauhans, putting the garrison to the sword, and thus restored it to
Mewar. Khemsi Pancholi, the adviser of this measure, was rewarded with a
grant of the township of Kata, then lately captured from the
Kaimkhanis.[5.2.14] Ranmall went on a pilgrimage to Gaya, and paid the
tax exacted for all the pilgrims then assembled.

The bard seldom intrudes the relation of civil affairs into his page,
and when he does, it is incidentally. It would be folly to suppose that
the princes of Maru had no legislative recorders; but with these the
poet had no bond of union. He, however, condescends to inform us of an
important measure of Rao Ranmall, namely, that he equalized the weights
and measures throughout his dominions, which he divided as at present.
The last act of Ranmall, in treacherously attempting to usurp the throne
of the infant Rana of Mewar, was deservedly punished, and he was slain
by the faithful Chonda, as related in the annals of that State.[5.2.15]
This feud originated the line of demarcation of the two States,[5.2.16]
and which remained [17] unaltered until recent times, when Marwar at
length touched the Aravalli. Rao Ranmall left twenty-four sons, whose
issue, and that of his eldest son, Jodha, form the great vassalage of
Marwar. For this reason, however barren is a mere catalogue of names, it
is of the utmost value to those who desire to see the growth of the
frèrage of such a community.[5.2.17]

        Names.                 Clans.          Chieftainships or Fiefs.
 1. Jodha (succeeded)   Jodha.
 2. Kandal            ┌ Kandalot, conquered  ┐
                      └ lands in             │ Bikaner.
                                             │ Awa, Kata, Palri,
 3. Champa              Champawat            ├ Harsola, Rohat,
                                             │ Jawala, Satlana,
                                             ┘ Singari.
                      ┐                      ┌ Asop, Kantalia,
 4. Akhairaj          │ Kumpawat             │ Chandawal, Siryari,
 had seven sons:      ├                      ┤ Kharla, Harsor, Balu,
 1st Kumpa            │                      │ Bajoria, Surpura,
                      ┘                      └ Dewaria.
 5. Mandla              Mandlot                Sarunda.
 6. Patta               Pattawat             ┌ Kurnichari, Bara, and
                                             └ Desnokh.[5.2.18]
 7. Lakha               Lakhawat                            ——
 8. Bala                Balawat                Dunara.
 9. Jethmall            Jethmallot             Palasni.
 10. Karna              Karnot                 Lunawas.
 11. Rupa               Rupawat                Chutila.
 12. Nathu              Nathawat               Bikaner.
 13. Dungra             Dungrot              ┐
 14. Sanda              Sandawat             │
 15. Manda              Mandot               │
 16. Biru               Birot                │
 17. Jagmall            Jagmallot            │ Estates not mentioned;
 18. Hampa [18]         Hampawat             ├ their descendants have
 19. Sakta              Saktawat             │ become dependent on the
 20. Karimchand         —-—-                 │ greater clanships.
 21. Arival             Arivalot             │
 22. Ketsi              Ketsiot              │
 23. Satrasal           Satrasalot           │
 24. Tejmall            Tejmallot            ┘


Footnote 5.2.1:

  [The date of Siha or Siāhji, the traditional founder of the Mārwār
  dynasty, was until recently uncertain. An inscription on a memorial
  stone gives the date as Vikrama Sambat 1330, A.D. 1387, and for his
  grandson, Dhūhada V.S. 1336, A.D. 1393. He is called the eldest son of
  Asvatthāma mentioned in the text (_IA_, xi. 301). The tradition is
  vitiated by the fact that this was not the first appearance of Rāthors
  in Rājputāna. An inscription at Bījapur states that five of this clan
  ruled at Hathūndi (Hastikūndi) in the tenth century (Erskine iii. A.
  54; _IGI_, vi. 247 f.).]

Footnote 5.2.2:

  [The Indhas occupy the W. tract of Mārwār; will not eat the flesh of
  the boar; believe that no member of the clan can be struck by
  lightning, owing to the prediction of Khākhaji, one of their
  ancestors; no epidemic ever breaks out in their territory as it is
  under the protection of their goddess, Chāwanda Māta (_Census Report,
  Mārwār, 1891_, ii. 31).]

Footnote 5.2.3:

  The Dabhi was one of the thirty-six royal races; and this is almost
  the last mention of their holding independent possessions. See Vol. I.
  p. 138, and the map for the position of Mewa at the bend of the
  Luni. [Kher is now a ruined village near Jasol, about 60 miles S.W. of
  Jodhpur city, on the left bank of the Lūni.]

Footnote 5.2.4:

  In my last journey through these regions, I visited the chief of the
  Gohils at Bhavnagar, in the Gulf of Cambay. I transcribed their
  defective annals, which trace their migration from ‘Kherdhar,’ but in
  absolute ignorance where it is! See Vol. I. p. 137.

Footnote 5.2.5:

  [Pāli, 45 miles S.S.E. of Jodhpur city. The Pāliwāls have some
  remarkable customs; they do not observe the Rākhi festival because of
  a tradition that on the day the town was sacked by Shihābu-d-dīn, the
  sacred cords of the men slain and the bangles of those women who
  immolated themselves weighed respectively 9 and 84 maunds. Compare the
  story of Chitor (Vol. I. p. 383) (_Census Report, Mārwār_, 1891,
  ii. 79).]

Footnote 5.2.6:

  [Who take their name from their capital, Hathūndi, now ruined, near
  Bījapur in S.E. Mārwār.]

Footnote 5.2.7:

  On the western coast of the Saurashtra peninsula. [The Okhamandal
  legend calls the Rāthor leaders Virāval and Bījal, who overcame the
  Chāwaras, and abandoning the name Rāthor, called themselves Vādhel,
  ‘slayers’ (_BG_, v. 590 f.).]

Footnote 5.2.8:

  From _badh_, _vadh_, ‘to slay.’

Footnote 5.2.9:

  He was of the Indha branch of the Parihars, and his daughter is called
  the Indhavatni.

Footnote 5.2.10:

  The descendants of those numbering 1, 2, 4, 7 still exist.

Footnote 5.2.11:

  This is the prince mentioned in the extraordinary feud related (p.
  731) from the annals of Jaisalmer. Incidentally, we have frequent
  synchronisms in the annals of these States, which, however slight, are
  of high import.

Footnote 5.2.12:

  See Vol. I. p. 323.

Footnote 5.2.13:

  See p. 730.

Footnote 5.2.14:

  [The Kāim or Qāimkhānis were originally Chauhāns, converted to Islām
  in the time of Fīroz Shāh. They are said to derive their name from the
  first famous convert. It is a rule with them not to use wooden planks
  in their doorways (_Census Report, Mārwār, 1891_, ii. 37 f.; Rose,
  _Glossary_, iii. 257).]

Footnote 5.2.15:

  See Vol. I. p. 327.

Footnote 5.2.16:

  See Vol. I. p. 328.

Footnote 5.2.17:

  It is only by the possession of such knowledge that we can exercise
  with justice our right of universal arbitration.

Footnote 5.2.18:

  Brave soldiers, but, safe in the deep sands, they refuse to serve
  except on emergencies.


                               CHAPTER 3

=Jodha, A.D. 1444-88. The Foundation of Jodhpur.=—Jodha was born at
Danla, the appanage of his father in Mewar, in the month Baisakh, S.
1484. In 1511 he obtained Sojat, and in the month Jeth, 1515 (A.D. 1459)
laid the foundation of Jodhpur, to which he transferred the seat of
government from Mandor. With the superstitious Rajput, as with the
ancient Roman [19], every event being decided by the omen or the augur,
it would be contrary to rule if so important an occasion as the change
of capital, and that of an infant State, were not marked by some
propitious prestige, that would justify the abandonment of a city won by
the sword, and which had been for ages the capital of Maru. The
intervention, in this instance, was of a simple nature; neither the
flight of birds, the lion’s lair, or celestial manifestation; but the
ordinance of an anchorite, whose abode, apart from mankind, was a cleft
of the mountains of Bakharchiriya. But the behests of such ascetics are
secondary only to those of the divinity, whose organs they are deemed.
Like the Druids of the Celts, the Vanaprastha Jogi,[5.3.1] from the
glades of the forest (_vana_) or recess in the rocks (_gupha_), issue
their oracles to those whom chance or design may conduct to their
solitary dwellings. It is not surprising that the mandates of such
beings prove compulsory on the superstitious Rajput: we do not mean
those squalid ascetics, who wander about India, and are objects
disgusting to the eye; but the genuine Jogi, he who, as the term
imports, mortifies the flesh, till the wants of humanity are restricted
merely to what suffices to unite matter with spirit; who has studied and
comprehended the mystic works, and pored over the systems of philosophy,
until the full influence of Maya (illusion) has perhaps unsettled his
understanding; or whom the rules of his sect have condemned to penance
and solitude; a penance so severe, that we remain astonished at the
perversity of reason which can submit to it.[5.3.2] To these, the Druids
of India, the prince and the chieftain would resort for instruction.
They requested neither lands nor gold: to them “the boasted wealth of
Bokhara” was as a particle of dust. Such was the ascetic who recommended
Jodha to erect his castle on ‘the Hill of Strife’ (Jodhagir), hitherto
known as Bakharchiriya, or ‘the bird’s nest,’ a projecting elevation of
the same range on which Mandor was placed, and about four miles south of
it. Doubtless its inaccessible position seconded the recommendation of
the hermit, for its scarped summit renders it almost impregnable [20],
while its superior elevation permits the sons of Jodha to command, from
the windows of their palace, a range of vision almost comprehending the
limits of their sway. In clear weather they can view the summits of
their southern barrier, the gigantic Aravalli; but in every other
direction it fades away in the boundless expanse of sandy plains.
Neither the founder, nor his monitor, the ascetic, however, were
engineers, and they laid the foundation of this stronghold without
considering what an indispensable adjunct to successful defence was good
water; but to prevent any slur on the memory of Jodha, they throw the
blame of this defect on the hermit. Jodha’s engineer, in tracing the
line of circumvallation, found it necessary to include the spot chosen
as his hermitage, and his remonstrance for undisturbed possession was
treated with neglect; whether by the prince as well as the chief
architect, the legend says not. The incensed Jogi pronounced an
imprecation, that the new castle should possess only brackish water, and
all the efforts made by succeeding princes to obtain a better quality,
by blasting the rock, have failed. The memory of the Jogi is sanctified,
though his anger compelled them to construct an apparatus, whereby water
for the supply of the garrison is elevated from a small lake at the foot
of the rock, which, being entirely commanded from the walls, an
assailant would find difficult to cut off. This was the third grand
event in the fortunes of the Rathors, from the settlement of

Such was the abundant progeny of these princes, that the limits of their
conquests soon became too contracted. The issue of the three last
princes, namely, the fourteen sons of Chonda, the twenty-four of
Ranmall, and fourteen of Jodha, had already apportioned amongst them the
best lands of the country, and it became necessary to conquer “fresh
fields in which to sow the Rathor seed.”

Jodha had fourteen sons, namely—

     Names of Chiefs.   Clans.          Fiefs or             Remarks.

  1. Santal, or       ┐ ——           Satalmer        ┌ Three coss from
     Satal            ┘                              └ Pokaran.
  2. Suja (Suraj)       ——           ——                Succeeded Jodha.
  3. Gama [21]          ——           ——                No issue.
                                                     ┌ Duda took Sambhar
                                                     │ from the
                                                     │ Chauhans. He
                                                     │ had one son,
  4. Duda [Dhuhada]     Mertia       Merta           ┤ Biram, whose
                                                     │ two sons Jaimall
                                                     │ and Jagmall
                                                     │ founded the
                                                     │ clans Jaimallot
                                                     └ and Jagmallot.
  5. Birsingh           Birsinghgot  Nolai             In Malwa.
  6. Bika               Bikayat      Bikaner           Independent State.
  7. Baharmall          Baharmallot  Bai Bhilara       ——
  8. Sheoraj            Sheorajot    Dunara            On the Luni.
  9. Karamsi            Karamsot     Khinwasar         ——
 10. Raemall            Raemallot    ——                ——
 11. Savantsi           Savantsiot   Dawara            ——
 12. Bida               Bidawat      Bidavati          In Nagor district.
 13. Banhar             ——           ——              ┐ Clans and fiefs not
 14. Nimba              ——           ——              ┘ mentioned.

=Sāntal, Sātal, 1488-91.=—The eldest son, Santal, born of a female of
Bundi, established himself in the north-west corner, on the lands of the
Bhattis, and built a fort, which he called Satalmer, about five miles
from Pokaran.[5.3.4] He was killed in action by a Khan of the Sahariyas
(the Saracens of the Indian desert), whom he also slew. His ashes were
burnt at Kasma, and an altar was raised over them, where seven of his
wives became satis.

The fourth son, Duda [or Dhūhada], established himself on the plains of
Merta, and his clan, the Mertia, is numerous, and has always sustained
the reputation of being the “first swords” of Maru. His daughter was the
celebrated Mira Bai, wife of Rana Kumbha,[5.3.5] and he was the
grandsire of the heroic Jaimall, who defended Chitor against Akbar, and
whose descendant, Jeth Singh of Badnor, is still one of the sixteen
chief vassals of the Udaipur court.

The sixth son, Bika, followed the path already trod by his uncle Kandal,
with whom he united, and conquered the tracts possessed by the six Jat
communities. He erected a city, which he called after himself, Bikaner,
or Bīkaner.

=Death of Rāo Jodha, A.D. 1488.=—Jodha outlived the foundation of his
new capital thirty years, and beheld his [22] sons and grandsons rapidly
peopling and subjugating the regions of Maru. In S. 1545, aged
sixty-one, he departed this life, and his ashes were housed with those
of his fathers, in the ancestral abode of Mandor. This prince, the
second founder of his race in these regions, was mainly indebted to the
adversities of early life for the prosperity his later years enjoyed;
they led him to the discovery of worth in the more ancient, but
neglected, allodial proprietors displaced by his ancestors, and driven
into the least accessible regions of the desert. It was by their aid he
was enabled to redeem Mandor, when expelled by the Guhilots, and he
nobly preserved the remembrance thereof in the day of his prosperity.
The warriors whose forms are sculptured from the living rock at Mandor
owe the perpetuity of their fame to the gratitude of Jodha; through them
he not only recovered, but enlarged his dominions.[5.3.6] In less than
three centuries after their migration from Kanauj, the Rathors, the
issue of Siahji, spread over a surface of four degrees of longitude and
the same extent of latitude, or nearly 80,000 miles square, and they
amount at this day, in spite of the havoc occasioned, by perpetual wars
and famine, to 500,000 souls.[5.3.7] While we thus contemplate the
renovation of the Rathor race, from a single scion of that magnificent
tree, whose branches once overshadowed the plains of Ganga, let us
withdraw from oblivion some of the many noble names they displaced,
which now live only in the poet’s page. Well may the Rajput repeat the
ever-recurring simile, “All is unstable; life is like the scintillation
of the fire-fly; house and land will depart, but a good name will last
for ever!” What a list of noble tribes could we enumerate now erased
from independent existence by the successes of ‘the children of Siva’
(_Siva-putra_)![5.3.8] Pariharas, Indhas, Sankhlas, Chauhans, Gohils,
Dabhis, Sandhals, Mohils, Sonigiras, Kathis, Jats, Huls, etc., and the
few who still exist only as retainers of the Rathor.

=Sūja or Surajmall, A.D. 1491-1516.=—Suja[5.3.9] (Surajmall) succeeded,
and occupied the _gaddi_ of Jodha during twenty-seven years, and had at
least the merit of adding to the stock of Siahji.

=The Rape of the Virgins.=—The contentions for empire, during the
vacillating dynasty of the Lodi kings of Delhi, preserved the sterile
lands of Maru from their cupidity; and a second dynasty, the Shershahi,
intervened ere “the sons of Jodha” were summoned to measure swords with
the Imperialists. But in S. 1572 (A.D. 1516), a desultory [23] band of
Pathans made an incursion during the fair of the Tij,[5.3.10] held at
the town of Pipar, and carried off one hundred and forty of the maidens
of Maru. The tidings of the rape of the virgin Rajputnis were conveyed
to Suja, who put himself at the head of such vassals as were in
attendance, and pursued, overtook, and redeemed them, with the loss of
his own life, but not without a full measure of vengeance against the
“northern barbarian.” The subject is one chosen by the itinerant
minstrel of Maru, who, at the fair of the Tij, still sings the rape of
the one hundred and forty virgins of Pipar, and their rescue by their
cavalier prince at the price of his own blood.

Suja had five sons, namely: 1. Bhaga, who died in non-age: his son Ganga
succeeded to the throne. 2. Uda, who had eleven sons: they formed the
clan Udawat, whose chief fiefs are Nimaj, Jaitaran, Gundoj, Baratia,
Raepur, etc., besides places in Mewar. 3. Saga, from whom descended the
clan Sagawat; located at Barwa. 4. Prayag, who originated the Prayaggot
clan. 5. Biramdeo, whose son, Naru, receives divine honours as the Putra
of Maru, and whose statue is worshipped at Sojat. His descendants are
styled Narawat Jodha, of whom a branch is established at Pachpahar, in

=Rāo Ganga, A.D. 1516-32.=—Ganga, grandson of Suja, succeeded his
grandfather in S. 1572 (A.D. 1516); but his uncle, Saga, determined to
contest his right to the _gaddi_, invited the aid of Daulat Khan Lodi,
who had recently expelled the Rathors from Nagor. With this auxiliary a
civil strife commenced, and the sons of Jodha were marshalled against
each other. Ganga, confiding in the rectitude of his cause, and
reckoning upon the support of the best swords of Maru, spurned the offer
of compromise made by the Pathan, of a partition of its lands between
the claimants, and gave battle, in which his uncle Saga was slain, and
his auxiliary, Daulat Khan, ignominiously defeated.

=Rāthors join Mewār against Bābur, A.D. 1527.=—Twelve years after the
accession of Ganga, the sons of Jodha were called on to unite their
forces to Mewar to oppose the invasion of the Moguls from Turkistan.
Sanga Rana, who had resumed the station of his ancestors amongst the
princes of Hind, led the war, and the king of Maru deemed it no
degradation to acknowledge his supremacy, and send his quotas to fight
under the standard of Mewar, whose chronicles do more justice to the
Rathors than those of their own bards. This, which was the last
confederation made by the Rajputs for national independence [24], was
defeated, as already related, in the fatal field of Bayana, where, had
treachery not aided the intrepid Babur, the Rathor sword would have had
its full share in rescuing the nation from the Muhammadan yoke. It is
sufficient to state that a Rathor was in the battle, to know that he
would bear its brunt; and although we are ignorant of the actual
position of the Rana, we may assume that their post was in the van. The
young prince Raemall (grandson of Ganga), with the Mertia chieftains
Kharto and Ratna, and many others of note, fell against the Chagatai on
this eventful day.

Ganga died[5.3.11] four years after this event, and was succeeded by

=Rāo Māldeo, A.D. 1532-62, or 1568-69.=—Maldeo in S. 1588 (A.D.
1532),[5.3.12] a name as distinguished as any of the noble princes in
the chronicles of Maru. The position of Marwar at this period was
eminently excellent for the increase and consolidation of its resources.
The emperor Babur found no temptation in her sterile lands to divert him
from the rich plains of the Ganges, where he had abundant occupation;
and the districts and strongholds on the emperor’s frontier of Maru,
still held by the officers of the preceding dynasty, were rapidly
acquired by Maldeo, who planted his garrisons in the very heart of
Dhundhar. The death of Sanga Rana, and the misfortunes of the house of
Mewar, cursed with a succession of minor princes, and at once beset by
the Moguls from the north, and the kings of Gujarat, left Maldeo to the
uncontrolled exercise of his power, which, like a true Rajput, he
employed against friend and foe, and became beyond a doubt the first
prince of Rajwara, or, in fact, as styled by the Muhammadan historian
Ferishta, “the most potent prince in Hindustan.”[5.3.13]

The year of Maldeo’s installation he redeemed the two most important
possessions of his house, Nagor and Ajmer. In S. 1596 he captured Jalor,
Siwana, and Bhadrajan from the Sandhals; and two years later
dispossessed the sons of Bika of supreme power in Bikaner. Mewa, and the
tracts on the Luni, the earliest possessions of his house, which had
thrown off all dependence, he once more subjugated, and compelled the
ancient allodial tenantry to hold of him in chief, and serve with their
quotas. He engaged in war with the Bhattis, and conquered Bikampur,
where a branch of his family remained, and are now incorporated with the
Jaisalmer State, and, under the name of Maldots,[5.3.14] have the credit
of being the most daring robbers of the desert. He even established
branches of [25] his family in Mewar and Dhundhar, took, and fortified
Chatsu, not twenty miles south of the capital of the Kachhwahas. He
captured and restored Sirohi from the Deoras, from which house was his
mother. But Maldeo not only acquired, but determined to retain, his
conquests, and erected numerous fortifications throughout the country.
He enclosed the city of Jodhpur with a strong wall, besides erecting a
palace, and adding other works to the fortress. The circumvallations of
Merta and its fort, which he called Malkot, cost him £24,000. He
dismantled Satalmer, and with the materials fortified Pokaran, which he
took from the Bhattis, transplanting the entire population, which
comprehended the richest merchants of Rajasthan. He erected forts at
Bhadrajan, on the hill of Bhimlod, near Siwana, at Gundoj, at Rian,
Pipar, and Dunara. He made the Kundalkot at Siwana, and greatly added to
that of Phalodi, first made by Hamira Nirawat. He also erected that
bastion in Garh Bitli (the citadel of Ajmer) called the Kotburj, and
showed his skill in hydraulics by the construction of a wheel to bring
water into the fort. The chronicler adds, that “by the wealth of
Sambhar,” meaning the resources of this salt lake, he was enabled to
accomplish these works, and furnishes a list of the possessions of
Jodhpur at this period, which we cannot exclude: Sojat, Sambhar, Merta,
Khata, Badnor, Ladnun, Raepur, Bhadrajan, Nagor, Siwana, Lohagarh,
Jaikalgarh, Bikaner, Bhinmal, Pokaran, Barmer, Kasoli, Riwaso, Jajawar,
Jalor, Baoli, Malar, Nadol, Phalodi, Sanchor, Didwana, Chatsu, Lawen,
Malarna, Deora, Fatehpur, Amarsar, Khawar, Baniapur, Tonk, Toda, Ajmer,
Jahazpur, and Pramar-ka-Udaipur (in Shaikhavati); in all thirty-eight
districts, several of which, as Jalor, Ajmer, Tonk, Toda, and Badnor,
comprehended each three hundred and sixty townships, and there were none
which did not number eighty. But of those enumerated in Dhundhar, as
Chatsu, Lawen, Tonk, Toda, and Jahazpur in Mewar, the possession was but
transient; and although Badnor, and its three hundred and sixty
townships, were peopled by Rathors, they were the descendants of the
Mertias under Jaimall, who became one of the great vassals of Mewar, and
would, in its defence, at all times draw their swords against the land
which gave them birth.[5.3.15] This branch of the house of Jodha had for
some time been too powerful [26] for subjects, and Merta was resumed. To
this act Mewar was indebted for the services of this heroic chief. At
the same time the growing power of others of the great vassalage of
Marwar was checked by resumptions, when J