Imágenes de páginas

enough to transact their business nese Governor), give the signal for without the assistance of any inter- closing the gates of both places, and preter. Their pronunciation, how- for every one to retire home. The ever, is often unintelligible ; still they whole of the police and military mahave an advantage over the Russian nagement is under the superintendence merchants, who never learn the Chi- of this last-mentioned officer, with a nese.

variety of inferior officers under him. Next to the governor's house (who The establishment of the commercial has always a guard of from fifty to one déput at Kiakhta has answered its hundred horsemen in his yard), are two purpose completely, whilst that of magnificent temples; one of which is

T'souroukhaitou has almost entirely consecrated to the Mongol hero, Ge- failed, owing to the badness of its sur Khan, who lived about the second situation, and the difficulty of actress or third century of our era, and is on both sides. Indeed, the Chinese considered as the tutelary saint of the merely continue the commerce there present Mantchou dynasty. A board

for the purpose of conforming to the upon the altar bears an inscription to treaty. There were never more than the following purport : “ To the great six caravans sent to Pekin from 1727 and sublime reigning emperor Thai to 1755, when the government gave Tsing, ten thousand, ten thousand up the privilege to its subjects, togeyears.” There are several idols in ther with that of the trade of Kiakhta, this temple, but it is only visited by since which, the latter has singularly the Chinese. There is another splendid prospered, and rendered the former temple, dedicated to the god, to whom entirely useless. Nevertheless, that the famous Hindoo prayer Om ma commerce is not so prosperous as is nyde is addressed. The emperors generally thought; for the value of being of the Buddha religion, keep all the goods exchanged there, takea patriarchs of this religion at Pekin, together, seldom exceeds one million and Ji ho in Mongolia. It is also the sterling a year, and sometimes does faith of the principal Mantchou faminot amount to more than one quarter lies, and of all the public functionaries of a million. The exportation of peltry at the Ourga and Kiakhta. The Foe has considerably decreased, since the religion, which is that of the majority English and Americans have imported of the Chinese, is only a sect of the Bud- so much of this article into Canton. dhists, and whose followers, although In order to make up for this deficiency honouring the spirit of the Dalai- in the annual balance, large quantities Lama as a divine emanation, do not of coarse broad-cloth are sent there, consider him as the head of their which used to be formerly bought church. South of this temple are two in Silesia, but which are now partij varnished columns, before the gover- manufactured in Russia itself. nor's house, which on solemn occasions : After the first treaty, in 1639, a are ornamented with standards, and, column was raised on the east side of at night, with flaming torches. Many the mouth of the great Gerbitsi, and Mongols and Mantchoux of rank come the left of the Amur, at a distance here to purchase goods, as they can of 2250 ly (about 857 geog. miles) thus get them cheaper. There are from the Mandchou town of Tsitsigar, also many Bokharians in this place for and 1611 ly (about 614 geog. miles

) the sale of the rhubarb, of which they from Sakhaliyan oula b'koutor. Upon bave the monopoly. There is a free this column, the whole of the treats

, communication between the Russians consisting of seven articles, was izand Chinese during the day-time: but scribed in the Russian, Latin, Chinese, as soon as night approaches, the drum Mandchoux, and Mongol languages ; at Kiakhta, and a fire-ball launched and it is still in existence. from the yard of the Dzargotchi (Chi

Y. 2


ENTERTAINMENT FOR TRAVELLERS IN INDIA. The bungalows which have long been determination to enforce an implicit oberected by the Government of Madras servance of the established regulations, with the charitable view of affording tem- and the other party stoutly maintaining a porary shelter to the weary traveller, ex spirit of resistance to this obdurate astend from that Presidency to the frontier sumption of authority. The latter, bowof the Nizam's territories; where one first ever, invariably takes the precaution to see meets with serais, commonly known by that every thing is first provided according the more familiar appellation of choultries, to his wishes and necessities before he beto which I shall presently advert: they gins to proceed to such unpleasant exconsist of two roorns, a hall, and a veran tremes. dah on three sides only, with suitable out Marching from Datchapilly, and prooffices attached, and a well sunk for the ceeding in a somewhat northerly direction, supply of water. The scite selected for after going over a distance of about eight the ercction of these bungalows, is gene. miles, the progress of the traveller is rally in the neighbourhood of a tope of suddenly intercepted by the Kistna river, trees, at a short distance from the village, whose banks are exceedingly high and and commands a delightful and extensive steep in the dry season, when the water is prospect of the surrounding country. The remarkably low, though it is not fordable first objects that, on alighting, attract a in any one place without boats, which stranger's attention, are some peons be- here are made of baskets covered with longing to the collector of the district, thick black, seasoned leather, and of a stationed there for the purpose of waiting circular form. These ferries being of a on gentlemen travellers, with strict in. large size, are capable of transporting not junctions to attend to their requisitions; only luggage of every kind, but also and they are sometimes accompanied by palanquins with their complement of the Cutwal or Puttail of the village, who bearers, and even carriages with their catpresents a written document, exhibiting a tle. Owing

the peculiarity of their nerick of the provisions obtainable there, construction, they do not admit of being and bearing the signature of the collector paddled in a strait-forward course, but

go in confirmation of the fairness of the with a whirling motion which not a little prices laid down. According to this state retards their progress, and is always very ment the necessary supplies are furnished; disagrecable. On the opposite banks of but when the account comes to be ad. the Kistna, whose current, from the face justed, which is always done in the dusk of the surrounding country intersected of the evening, few persons consider them with lofty mountains on every side, joined selves bound scrupulously to abide by the to the natural declivity and steepness of regulations, under the plea that the charges its banks, runs smoothly throughout the

A begari is paid at the year, stands the village of Warrapilly, rate of one dub, or double pice, for every marking the boundary of the Nizam's mile; and when it is taken into considera- dominions. I once passed close to the tion that an individual travelling bas sel Kistna, in the worst period of the mondom occasion for less than eight, ten, soon, when the rains poured down in or twelve coolies, often more, while the torrents, filling up every creek and nullength of each stage not unfrequently lah, and swelling the Kistna almost to exceeds fourteen miles, it will be readily overflowing, while the wind roared with a admitted that the rigorous observancy of fury approaching to a storm, and yet I do the above regulations would naturally bear not remember that this beautiful river was hard upon peregrinators, especially upon agitated in any extraordinary degree. such as, owing to their circumstances in At Warrapilly the traveller for the first life, are not overflushed with silver. On time meets with a choultry, with which occasions of this kind, it is not to be the extensive possessions of the Soubah of wondered at that a wordy altercation should the Dekhan abound. These edifices exhibreak out; the Cutwal shewing a positive bit no proud specimens of architectural

are enormous.

in after ages.

elegance suited to European taste, as they an able minister and a shrewd politician, are of the simplest and most ordinary con- combined with the possession of unlimited struction, and built after the Mahomedan power, exalted rank, and eminent station, style. Their extreme length is from two all the milder and more cherished quali. to three hundred feei, and they are half ties of a generous and charitable dispothat space in breadth. These serais con- sition, a tender and confiding heart, bene, sist of a vast number of little roomz volent feelings, ' and great integrity of adjoining one another, barely sufficient principle. A few years, therefore, prior for the accommodation of a single person.

to his demise, desirous of leaving to an The mosque stands facing the east, and admiring posterity the most durable was originally appropriated to religious monument of his munificence, as during purposes, though now all think them- his life bis uprightness of conduct in the selves privileged to invade its quiet and impartial administration of justice and sanctity. The centre of these choultries universal benevolence of character, which is an open space, overgrown with grass his very name significantly denoted, had and shrubs, probably consigned for the shed a bright lustre on his reputation, and use of cattle, and in some of them suito diffused an unfading radiance around his able apartments are appropriated for the earthly career, he felt anxious of perpetuatexclusive convenience of native females. ing his fame by an act that would not only The lofty minarets of the mosques may exalt his renown among his contemporahe distinctly seen at the distance of two ries while the vital spark continued to or three miles, and more if the country animate his corporeal frame, bui, at the happen to be blessed with an open pros same time, serve to immortalize his name pect; and at the time when these erec

Accordingly, imparting, tions were originally finished, a faqueer his designs to his brother courtiers, or had been attached to each, not only for those satellites which are ever to be found the purpose of guarding the mosques crowding round the favourite of fortune, from profanation, but also of keeping the emitting a feeble splendour for a tranbuildings clean and in proper order. sient hour, and then withdrawing their This description of service was usually diminished rays before the brighter effulrewarded by the voluntary contribution of gence of a rising sun, like the ignited Mahomedan pilgrims, who only were insect that, attracted by the brilliancy of a suffered to enter these sacred edifices in glowing taper, heedlessly flutters round order to perform their morning and even its lambent flame, and is then annihilated ing devotions ; but now hardly a traveller for ever; he set about carrying his laudarrives but he is sure to take possession of able scheme into immediate execution. It the very mosque itself, the walls of which

was necessary for him only to issue his are most shamefully disfigured with scraps mandates to be peremptorily obeyed. of writing both in prose and verse in all Proper architects having been, therefore, languages; perhaps, left as lasting memo- provided, and the requisite funds raised, rials of the gratitude of those who find they were soon dispersed over the whole shelter in them from the fatigues of pere- of the Nizam's country with the strictest grination, the scorching beams of a verti- orders to proceed with the work instanter, cal sun, or the peltings of a furious storm. Large massy slabs cut out of the adjacent

It may not be irrelevant to mention rocks were transported at an immense exhere, that the serais or choultries in ques. pense to the different scites wbere the tion, were originally founded by Meer edifices I have above alluded to were to Allum, late Minister to his Highness the be respectively erected in the manner present Nizam of Hydrabad, from his described, no other material being em. own private means. These buildings are ployed on the occasion, except chunang not composed of common brick and mor for the internal and external coating of tar, like the bungalows erected under the the choultries, which must have been com, auspices of the Madras Government, but pleted at vast labour and expense, and of materials as different in quality as the after the lapse of several years; no doubt edifices themselves are different in style presenting at the commencement a grand and construction. Meer Allum, who had and magnificent appearance, contrasted the envied reputation of being considered with the desolate state of the country,

around. The spires of some of the being no vent for the egress of smoke; mosques are of beautiful carved work, while the interior of the mosques exhibit whilst the gateways of a few, being rather frigbtful marks of ravages committed by lofty and roomy, afford additional accom the rude hands of heedless travellers, who, modation to travellers.

The rooms are as a return for the kindly shelter they had extremely small and confined, having no received, have wantonly destroyed every wicket to prevent intrusion, and very vestige of the little elegance which these much incrusted with a black soot, in con stately structures ever possessed, by idly sequence of native pilgrims being allowed indulging in that reprehensible propensity to dress their victuals in them, and there che cacoethes scribendi. -[Cal. Journ.


AUTO-BIOGRAPHY OF A LEARNED NATIVE. The following piece of auto-biography tises, chiefly taken from Encyclopædias, of a learned native, now resident in in which he is engaged, will be productive Calcutta, was drawn up by the sub- of benefit to the Persian and Arabic ject of it, Moulavee Abdoor Ruheem, literati.-[Oriental Magazine. at the request' of several gentlemen, who were anxious to know something “ However unworthy of attention the of the steps by which he arrived at se events of my unimportant life may be veral singularities of opinion, both phy- considered, yet, in compliance with the sical and theological, that distinguish him desire expressed by high and eminent from his countrymen. The names of many talent, I proceed to give the following ac. of the books which he mentions having perused are omitted, as it is not easy to “I was born at Gorakpur, about the give any account of them. They are in year of the Hijra 1200. My father was a general highly metaphysical, as are also weaver, and designed ine for the same his doctrines. He is now engaged in business, but had me nevertheless intranslating into Arabic and Persian, a structed, whilst a child, in the elements considerable number of European ele- of the Persian language. He was dismentary treatises on Algebra, arithmetic, appointed by an accident which befell me and mathematics; and is, doubtless, con wben about ten years of age; by a fall tributing very considerably to the better from a horse, I dislocated my left arnı, instruction of his countrymen in these and lost for ever the free use of it. Being sciences. He is a philosopher, and, like thus disqualified for mechanical occupamost other philosophers, has a system of tion, and confined for a time by indisposi-, his own. In the translations on which he tion, I was induced to addict myself is employed, lie sometimes runs away from wholly to study; and between the ages of the subject more immediately before him, ten and fifteen, I read with avidity a great to prove his favourite doctrine that the number of Persian works, such as the Sun is God. He will not, therefore, Bostan and Gulistan, the epistolary works allow that there are more suns than one in of Herkern, Khalifa, and Yar Mohamthe universe, as he denies a plurality of med, the Vakial Alemgiri, the Sekender Gods; and consequently considers all the Nama, the Dewans of Hilali, Ghani, fixed stars as revolving around our lumi: Asefi, and other poets : at fifteen I comnary. He rejects, without ceremony, the menced the study of Arabic, and soon compound forces of rectilinear motion and mastered the elementary treatises. In the gravitation, which we imagine combine to course of a year, I perused the Mizan, the keep the planets in their orbits; and al. Munshaib, and Tesrif. I also learned to though mathematician enough to admit, write the Suls character. that the elliptical motion would be the « Whilst I was studying the Mishah, result of both, he will not grant the pre my father took me with him on a visit to mises, which he regards as unproved. his Pir, or spiritual guide, who lived at Although amply endued with the vagaries Tanda, on the banks of the Gaggra. of a theorist, there is no doubt, that the The Pir was a man of learning, and gave translations of geometrical and other trea. lessons to a number of disciples. My.

love of letters rendered me very willing displayed for superstition of every kind, to be enrolled amongst his scholars, and by the eloquent writers who rehearsed their to benefit by his instructions. I accord- praises. Oppressed with doubt, and usingly remained with him, and studied willing to communicate my feelings to any under him three years. Our life was not of my friends, my chief pleasure was in one of plenty or ease. The Pir had no solitary rambles amongst the tombs of the means of supporting himself and his illustrious and eminent, with which the pupils, but those derived from the bounty ruined suburbs of Dehli are abundantly of his followers; and this was often in- strewed. Whilst thus agitated between sufficient to procure us a meal. He was the reliques of those forms of faith, in moreover, a man of a violent and irascible which I had been reared, but had not character; so that, notwithstanding my abandoned, and those new and crade com uniform diligence and obedience, I found ceptions which I had scarcely yet ez. it impossible to remain with him longer braced, I was little better than one beside than the period above-mentioned. I then himself. In this state of mind, these quitted him, and went to seek my fortune lines in the Tohfet-ul-Irakein often reat Lucknow. Whilst living with my curred to me:-- I am struck with wonder master, I read the Kafia, the Shereh at all that exists, until the revolution or Mulla, the Isagoji and Commentary, and time, and the end of all things, shall other works.

establish the chapter of the Koran, or the “ When at Lucknow, I placed myself volumes of the Zend.' under the tuition of other masters, and in “ At last, in the year 1823, I acconthe space of a year perused the Maibeddi. panied Mr. Fraser, one of the gentlemen I also practised composition, and wrote attending upon Mr. Elphinstone, on his Persian verses ; in which employment, embassy tu Caubul. I wrote a journal of and the pleasures of Lucknow, I lost my the route to Peshawer; but it was afterelish for grave and serious studies. As wards lost. On the road also I perused one consequence of my altered sentiments, many books, both Persian and Arabic, I detached myself from the communion of which belonged to Mr. Fraser, such as the the Sunis, to which I had hitherto be Haiet al Haiwan, Tarikh Hukma, Kham. longed.

seh Nizami, and the Dewaos of Amwi “ At the expiration of a year, I ac and Masaoud. At Multan and Peshe companied a teacher of note on his journey wer, I met with many works which I ** to Dehli, and on the road studied the delighted to find, as the Tebaiat chapter of Shereh Akaida Nesfi. I resided at Dehli the Shefa, and the Mahahir Masbrekiya three years, and read the Mir Zahedeh Imam, which contains the substance of the Jelali, the Sedreb, the Shemsi Bazgheh, Shefa, as well as other curious matters &c. I also studied the elements of physic I returned to Dehli in about a year; and under Hakim Sherif Khan. Many of shortly afterwards taking lease of Mr. these books I was at the pains of transcrib. Fraser, I repaired to Calcutta. I took up ing. I gave, as well as received instruc

my abode at Rasapagla, and was well tion, and usually devoted my days to pleased to be established in a place where teaching and copying, and my nights to lawful authority prevailed, and every mo study, I now began to compose, in a was at liberty to enjoy his own opinions style, that would bear a comparision with without molestation, I fell, howere, the writings of former days.

into evil company, and lost much of what “ Towards the close of my residence at I had laboured to acquire by study, in Dehli, I began to meditate upon the re idleness and dissipation. The slight religious dissensions of mankind, and the liques of superstition which yet lurked in attempts of the different sects, to vilify my heart, were now completely eradithe tenets of their opponents, and veil the cated; for in all situations of life, I had defects of their own systems of belief. preserved the same anxiety to ascertain the By this train of thinking, my own bi true nature of God and of futurity, ani goted persuasions were entirely destroyed, was far from being able to meet with any and my attention was attracted by the solution of my doubts, either from mes histories of the bounty and equity of the or books. Some of the foriner, of great ancient princes of Iran, and the contempt repute, replied to my queries, that it was

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »