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forcing back a crowd, and then a faint no enemy appeared in front; when, no shout would follow, whose accents sooner bad the leading files reached might mean triumph or defiance. the opening of La Dauphine, than the
I was already beginning to weary of artillery opened with grape and round expectancy, when I perceived, from shot. The distance could scarcely the movement on the house-tops and have exceeded forty yards, and the the church tower, that something was withering fire tore through the dense going forward within the view of those ranks, forming deep lanes of death! stationed there. I had not to look Smoke soon enveloped the masses, and long for the cause, for suddenly the it was only at intervals I could catch harsh sharp beat of a drum was heard, sight of the moving body, which still and immediately after the head of a moved up! There was something column wheeled from one of the side indsecribably dreadful in seeing the streets into the Rue St. Honore. They steady march of men to inevitable de were grenadiers of the National Guard, struction; and even their slow pace (for and a fine body of men they seemed, such was it of necessity, from the numas they marched proudly forward, till bers of dead and dying that enthey came to a halt before the steps of cumbered their path) increased the St. Roch. Handkerchiefs were waved borror of the spectacle. A deadly in salutation to them from windows musketry poured down from the and housetops; and cheering fol tower of St. Roch upon the gunners. lowed them as they went. A single The whole fire from housetops and figure at the entrance of “ La Dau windows was directed at them; but, phine," stood observing them with his fast as they fell, others took their glass; he was an artillery officer, and places, and the roll of the artillery took a long and leisurely survey of the never slackened nor ceased for an in. troops, and then directed his eyes stant. The shot rattled like hail on towards the crowded roofs, which he the walls of the houses, or crashed swept hastily with his telescope. This through them with clattering destrucdone, he sauntered carelessly back and tion. Wild and demoniac yells, deathdisappeared.
shouts, and cries of triumph, mingled The grenadiers were soon followed with the terrible uproar. * Above all, by the line, and now, as far as my bowever, roared the dread artillery, eye could carry, I beheld vast masses in one unbroken thunder. At last of soldiery who filled the street in its the column seemed to waver - the entire breadth. Up to this all was leading files fell back-a moment's hepreparation. Not a sight, or sound, sitation ensued - a fresh discharge of or gesture indicated actual conflict, grape, at less than pistol range, tore and the whole might have meant a through them; and now the word was mere demonstration on either side, given to retire. Shouts and cries when suddenly there burst forth a poured from the housetops and paracrash like the most terrific thunder. It pets. Were they of encouragement or made the very street tremble, and the derision ?- who can tell ? The street houses seemed to shake as the air vi. now presented the horrid spectacle of brated around them; a long volley of indiscriminate carnage-the guns were musketry succeeded, and then there wheeled forward as the troops rearose a din of artillery, shouts, and tired, cavalry charging on the broken small arms, that made up the infernal masses while the guns were reloading. chaos. This came from the quarter of the cavalcade of death rode past at a the river, and in that direction every walk, the gunners firing steadily on, eye was turned. I hurried to the back till the word was given to cease. The of the house in the hope of being able smoke cleared lazily away at last, and to see something, but the windows now no living thing was seen to stir in only looked into a court surrounded by front: the long line of the Rue St. tall buildings. Ere I returned to my Honore presented nothing but the boplace the conflict had already begun. dies of the dead. The housetops and The troops of the National Guard ad parapets, too, were speedily deserted; vanced, firing by sections, and evi. for the houses were now forced by the dently bent on forcing their passage infantry of the line, who, at every mo. up the street; and their firing seemed ment, appeared at the windows, and as if meant in declaration of their inten- waved their shakos in token of victory. tions rather than aggressively, since As I looked, a crash recalled my at“THE STORY OF MAIRWARA," AND "THE LABOURS OF COLONEL HALL."
tention behind me; and now the door of the bureau was in ruins, and four soldiers, with their bayonets at the charge, dashed forward. On seeing me alone and unarmed, they only laughed, and passed on to the upper story.
“Are you in charge here ?" asked a young corporal of me.
“I belong to the bureau,” said I, in reply.
“ Place your books and papers un
der lock and key, then," said he, "and make your way to head quarters."
" Where ?"
“At the Tuilleries. There goes the Commander-in-Chief,” added he, mechanically saluting, as a staff of officers rode by beneath.
- Who is that pale man in front, with the long hair ?" asked I.
“General Bonaparte," was the answer, “and few can handle artillery like him.”
Ix the “History of British India," we occasionally meet with passages which, while varying from its epic tone, com mend themselves to our judgment as not less deserving of admiration than the spirit-stirring triumphs of that bril. liant narrative. Amongst the most en gaging of such episodes is the “ Sketch of Mairwara." It tells of a wild and warlike race, famed for the ferocity of their forays-a nation of Rob Roys and Robin Hoods or something worse, partly Mussulmans, partly Hindoos, but so much laxer in their observances than either of these persuasions, as to be disavowed by both. Their mountain fastnesses were for ages the Adullam caves of the neighbouring lowlands, and, accordingly, their community grew up, recruited from the worst cha racters of the cities of the plain. Thus circumstanced, they became an or. ganised robber-state, and continued for centuries, idle, independent, and unsubdued, plagued at frequent in tervals by pestilence, or peeled by famine, until the year 1821, when they came into contact with our arms, and were reduced to subjection. Soon afterwards their districts were confided by the East India Company, with little either of interference or of aid, to the management of an officer, whose appointment affords a fresh instance of the marked discretion with which such selections are usually made, and who, in the perfect accomplishment of a task of signal difficulty, es
tablished his claim to be rated amongst the ablest officials of that well-served government. This was Colonel Henry Hall, C.B., at that time a captain acting with the army in Malwa and Rajpootana, under Sir David Ochterlony, and whose services and gallantry had attracted the notice, and elicited the commendations of his distinguished commander. Through the exertions of Colonel Hall, the robber system was put down, a native battalion was formed, roads were made, the passes were opened, traffic was encouraged, and a regular government was, for the first time, established throughout Mairwara. The Mairs - for so are these people named-were won over to abandon their demoralising habits, and by their own acts, in their own councils, to abolish their pernicious usages. Slavery was prohibited ; infanticide, which it bad been found so difficult to check elsewhere, was completely put an end to, and their peculiar and most barbarous of all savage customs, that of selling their mothers and wives, was wholly given up. A form of trial by jury was introduced, a jail was erected, and maintained without cost to the Company, and a system for the administration of justice was established, which was inexpensive, and so efficacious that, since the year 1824, the punishment of death has been in no instance inflicted, and but three persons have been transported. To secure a supply of water —the great want of these districts
• " Sketch of Mairwara." By Lieut.-Col. C. J. Dixon, Bengal Artillery, 4to. Smith, Elder, and Co. London : 1850.
and to husband it for the purposes of tions, render the book too high-priced irrigation, the people were encouraged for extended circulation. The main to sink wells, and taught to construct object of the Directors--the instructank-embankments. Agriculture was tion of their own officers, may in this improved, much waste jungle-land was manner be best attained ; but, besides brought into cultivation, new villages instructing, it is good to encourage were built, and, in fine, through the officers, a maxim which no public body labours of Colonel Hall, unreinittingly can be more ready to assent to, than pursued with quiet devotion for the Court of Directors. We, there. thirteen years, this people, once so wild, fore, with all respect to them, submit were reclaimed to fixed habits of in that they may do more justice both to dustry and order, and are now living the individuals whose names are so hoin security and comfort, defraying the nourably connected with Mairwara, charges of their own establishments, and to themselves, by the simple step and yielding, willingly, a remunerating of having this cumbrous “ Sketch" tribute to their benefactors and pro. denuded of its quarto honours, disentectors, the Supreme Government. cumbered of work-details and exThis is the sketch of a “ Sketch," the pensive attributes, and reduced to the crême de la crême of the “ Sketch of compass of a railway volume. Thus Mairwara,” made to bespeak the in. may the labours of Colonel Hall meet, terest of our readers. As, however, in the earnest applause of the public, we apprehend that their attention will the reward which will be at once most not be very readily accorded to a far. grateful to him, and most stimulating off district, with an unknown heathen to others; thus, too, may the millions name, and that, possibly, our glowing know that, besides gathering those picture of these happy valleys may have laurels of which we are all so justly less the appearance of reality than of proud, extending our commerce, af. romance, we think it well to add that fording occupation, and amassing the “ Sketch of Mairwara” comes be. wealth, the East India Company, far fore us with unusual vouchers, as well from meriting the taunt of being infor the substantial accuracy and unex- different to the internal condition of aggerated truth of its averments, as the country, is actively employed in for the importance of the labours which improving it, and has been, for a length it records. The work was prepared of time, unostentatiously engaged in by Colonel Dixon, the successor of the silent ministry of doing good. Colonel Hall, in pursuance of an order Mairwara forms a portion of that of the Court of Directors of the East mountain chain known by the name of India Company, and printed at their the Arabala Hills, and running N.N.E. expense, “chiefly," as the minute con- from Goozerat, to within a few miles veying their order states, “ for the pur of Delhi. It is bounded on the north pose of being circulated among all by Ajmeer, separates Mey war on the public officers who may have an op- east from Marwar on the west, and to portunity of rendering similar services the south has the hill possessions of in other quarters." The better to Meywar. The territory is about a secure the full effect of so good an ex. hundred miles in length, with a breadth ample, it was ordered that the book of from twenty-five to thirty :should contain scientific plans, sections, and drawings of the most ma
" There are no rivers in this tract, and as terial works executed, founded on the rain descending from the hills made its actual survey and measurement, with. way to the plains with the force of a mounout which their nature could hardly tain torrent, agriculture was extremely prebe understood, the difficulties encoun carious, since the crops only received advantered appreciated, or sufficient infor tage from the rain while falling. It will be mation given to enable others to con shown, in due course, the arrangements that struct like works in similar localities.
have been made to obviate the want of water The drawings of the specimens selected
for purposes of cultivation, by damming up
the mountain streams, whereby the calamiare accordingly given, with minute
ties arising from drought have been redetails of the mode of construction,
duced to a minimum point. The soil, comrates of work, mode in which used, and
posed of the debris of the hills, mixed with all other circumstances. These details,
decayed vegetation, is extremely fertile ; the however, embarrass the narrative, and return from a beegab of wheat or barley with the plans, drawings, and illustra- being from ten to twelve mounds, while in
Marwar, and Meywar, immediately below the hills, the produce only ranges from six to eight mounds. The arrangements adopted in the hills, of diking up the fields with walls of dry stone, whereby moisture is retained, and the decayed vegetation washed down from the hills arrested, conduce much to the fertility of the soil. The portion of the country now most productive, was, before the subjugation of the Mairs, a dense jungle, infested with wild beasts, and scarcely ever traversed by man, save along the foot-paths, which served as roads communicating between the few villages dispersed through the hills. At the time the army penetrated the tract, no single village was inhabited in wbat is now denominated Purgunah Bhaelaw, now consisting of twentyfive villages, only two of which had retained their inhabitants."-p. 2.
together to the southward of the Arabala range. The reduction of the hill-tribes permanently open these lines of intercourse, thereby materially conducing to the interests of the adjoining state. Colonel Hall opened a road passing through the cantonment of Beawr, for cattle, over the Arabala range, in 1826. On the formation of the town of Nya Nuggur, in 1836, this pass was made practicable for wheeled carriages. It is now undergoing considerable improvement, and, with other plans, being carried out, the communication between Marwar and Meywar has been so much facilitated, that the ronte by Nya Nuggur has now become the great line of intercourse between the northern portion of Marwar to Malwa and the Deccan. The arrangements for protecting trade and travellers through the Mairwara hills are so good, that a robbery is a matter of very rare occurrence. When such cases happen, the onus of satisfying the injured parties rests with the village where the injury has been committed. Various other intermediate passes have been opened, and are frequented by all sections of the community without fear or apprehension. The heretofore much-dreaded Mair hills offer convenient routes of intercourse between the two great principalities of Meywar and Marwar, through their whole length; and life and property are much more secure, from the responsibility which devolves on the people, than while traversing any of the states of Rajwara."-pp. 3-4.
The Mairwara territory now under our control. belongs in unequal por. tions to the East India Company, to Meywar, and to Marwar. On the subjugation of the Mairs, the villages which had paid allegiance to these states were given up to them; but some of them proving too refractory, were subsequently made over to our management. The district, as at present constituted, consists of nine pur gunahs, or divisions : of these, four belong to our Government and form, properly, part of the British territory of Ajmeer. They embrace one hundred and forty-three villages, and sixty-three hamlets, of which only eighteen were inhabited when the country first fell into the hands of Colonel Hall. Meywar owns three divisions, comprising se. venty-six villages and thirteen hamlets. Their land is fertile, and has been much improved by the provision made for irri. gation. Marwar has but two divisions, with twenty-one villages and four ham. lets. These are mostly placed in mountain fastnesses, and have but little avail. able land. One of the early objects of Colonel Hall was the making of roads.
Whatever we know of the history of these mountaineers, was collected by Colonel Hall, from a comparison of such records as they possess with the depositions of their chiefs. The Mairs were no clerks, but though unacquainted with reading or writing, it was their usage to employ itinerant historians, who marked down the main events of their career. Through these sources, their origin has been traced to the twelfth century; and it appears, that as they grew in numbers, they became troublesome to the states around them, and were in consequence the objects of some very formidable expeditions ; all of which, however, had the one result of being unsuccessful. This, their courage, their martial character, and the difficulties of their mountain fastnesses, render quite credible. From the year 1754 to 1800, repeated movements were made against them by princes of the Singh family. In 1807, Baleh Rao, a Mahratta, led a force of 60,000 men against them; but their whole population rose in arms, and attacking this numerous army, compelled it to retire. In 1810, and
" Formerly there was no carriage-road from Aboo to the southward, to Khurwah in Ajmeer, northwards across the hills. Over the passes of Dewair, Chapulean, Peeplee, Mundawur, and Kot-Kuran, a traffic on camels and bullocks could only pass under the protection of large military escorts. Commerce was, in consequence, subjected to much expense and interruption. The commounication from Goozerat, or Marwar to Meywar, if not effected over these ghattas, was extremely circuitous, being carried on either through Ajmeer to the north, or al
ported to have been wounded ; bat no serious attack was made upon them, and the necessary local information having been gained, the party returned to Nusseerabad.”- p. 19.
again in 1818, they were assailed by other powers, who experienced the like fortune of defeat, and thus a long series of successes increased their con. fidence both in themselves and in the impregnability of their position.
In 1818, the city of Ajmeer, some twenty-five miles north of the frontier of Mairwara, was occupied by the British forces, who soon became aware that they were in the neighbourhood of marauders, whose audacity made it unsafe for any one to go beyond the eity walls after sunset. They were called, as we were told, Mairs, and lived by levying blackmail on the cultivators and chiefs around. It was at that period that we first heard of their ex. istence. A young officer, on his own entreaty, obtained leave to go amongst these mountaineers and sketch their unknown hills. This was Captain, now Colonel Hall, who was thus the first European who trod their virgin soil, and whose name in the hereafter, was to be for ever associated with the his. tory of their race.
An agreement was entered into with these Mairs, by which they bound themselves to abstain from plundering. This they observed only as long as they could not help it, and it became necessary to use compulsion. The hazardous task of gaining a knowledge of the features of the country and other information before attacking it, was undertaken by Captain Hall.
In this passage there is a small mistake. The escort was merely for Colonel Hall while reconnoitring, but wishing to see and learn more than he could, while so attended, he left the escort, and entered Shamgurb, the chief town of the Mairs, accompanied only by an officer of engineers. Their escape was providential, the Mairs being well aware that we were contemplating an attack upon them, and having, at the moment, actually sent an agent to in. spect and report upon the British force. The account which their mes. senger gave on his return, does not do much credit to their intelligence department:
“The first thing (says Colonel Dixon) which he saw was a number of Sepoys undressed, bathing and eating; and observing so many of them with the Juneo, or Brahminical thread, across their bodies, he conceived the idea that the regiments were composed chiefly of Brahmins, seeing that in Rajpootana the distinction is almost entirely confined to that caste; and held them in light esteem accordingly. He next saw them in the evening, dressed in their red coats, and drilling on their respective parades: the exhibition seems to bave fairly puzzled him, and on returning to his friends he reported that the British regiments were composed of Brahmins and women.”
" With a view. (says Colonel Dixon) to gaining the knowledge of the features of the country. so necessary for the successful conduct of military operations, a party of four officers, accompanied by a strong escort, of a company of infantry, a troop of cavalry, and a number of Hurkaras proceeded from Nusseerabad, via Loolooa to Shamgurh, in Mairwara. Of this party was Colonel (then Captain) Hall, of the Quartermaster-General's department, who afterwards was entrusted with the charge of the district, and who commenced the then apparently hopeless task of improving the morals of the Mairs. There was also an officer of engi. neers, and the party was accompanied by Devee Singh, the Thakoor of Mussooda. Having proceeded thus far without molestation, they attempted to penetrate by the Jak Gbatta to Dilwara, but the Mairs collected in force and occupied the pass in front of them, and they were obliged to alter their route, and passed vid Soorajpoora to Khurwah, where they halted for the night. Some considerable robberies were committed during the night, and å chuprassie was re
The Mairs had, before long, an opportunity of improving their acquaintance with these Brahmins and women, In 1819, a Sepoy force, with some light guns, mounted on elephants, was brought against them, and a simulta. neous attack was made on two of their strongholds, Loolooa and Jak. The plan, which was framed by Colonel Hall, was perfectly successful, and the Mairs were again allowed to enter into an agreement binding themselves to good conduct for the future; this, however, they did not much regard, and in another year they were in open arms against us. It had by this time become manifest that all attempts to advance the prosperity of our possessions in Rajpootana would be una. vailing, until the Mairs were reduced to order; and it was accordingly resolved on_first, to subdue, and then, if possible, to keep them quiet. Their subjection was attended with more of