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although now a degraded race, are wholly undeserving of this contemptuous mode of reference. Bishop Heber and Sir John Malcolm speak of them in very different terms; and the former says, that thieves and savages as they are,' he found that the officers he conversed with thought them, on the whole, a better ' race than their Rajpoot conquerors.'* A gradual descent led down to Kotah, on the eastern bank of the Chumbul. The appearance of this place is very imposing, and impresses the mind with a more lively notion of wealth and activity, than most cities in India. It has acquired some celebrity in the annals of British India, in connexion with the extraordinary man who so long, under the title of Regent, exercised the virtual powers of sovereignty over this Rajpoot state, and who is styled by Col. Tod the Nestor of Rajwarra. Zalim Sing was the first chief who accepted the proffered alliance of the British Government at the commencement of the Pindarry war in 1817; and he remained faithful to his engagements. His portrait, as drawn by our Author, exhibits him as a consummate politician and all-accomplished despot, who would have shed lustre on the throne of Baber and Aurungzebe.
Every act evinced his deep skill in the knowledge of the human mind, and of the elements by which he was surrounded. He could circumvent the crafty Mahratta, calm or quell the arrogant Rajpoot, and extort the applause even of the Briton, who is little prone to allow inerit in an Asiatic. He was a depository of the prejudices and the pride of his countrymen, both in religious and social life: yet, enigmatical as it must appear, he frequently violated them, though the infraction was so gradual as to be imperceptible except to the few who watched the slow progress of his plans. To such, he appeared a compound of the most contradictory elements; lavish and parsimonious, oppressive and protecting ; with one hand bestowing diamond aigrettes, with the other taking the tithe of the anchorite's wallet ; one day, sequestrating estates, and driving into exile the ancient chiefs of the land; the next, receiving with open arms some expatriated noble, and supporting him in dignity and affluence, till the receding tide of human affairs rendered such support no longer requisite.
• Aware of the danger of relaxing, “ to have done”, even when eighty-five winters had passed over his head, was never in his thoughts. He knew that a Rajpoot's throne should be the back of his steed; and when blindness overtook him, and he could no longer lead the chase on horseback, he was carried in his litter to his grand hunts, which consisted sometimes of several thousand armed men. Besides dissipating the ennui of his vassals, he obtained many other objects by an amusement so analogous to their character: in the unmasked joyous
* See Heber's Journal, Vol. II. 4to, p. 71. Ecl. Rev. 2d Series, Vol. XXIX. p. 312. Col. Tod states, that the Rajpoot himself will eat, and all classes will drink water at the hands of the Bheels.
ness of the sport, he heard the unreserved opinions of his companions, and gained their affection by thus administering to the favourite pastime of the Rajpoot, whose life is otherwise monotonous. When in the forest, he would sit down, surrounded by thousands, to regale on the game of the day. Camels followed his train, laden with flour, sugar, spices, and huge cauldrons for the use of his sylvan cuisine; and amidst the hilarity of the moment, he would go through the varied routine of government, attend to foreign and commercial policy, the details of his farms or his army, the reports of his police; nay, in the very heat of the operations, shot flying in all directions, the ancient Regent might be discovered, like our immortal Alfred or St. Louis of the Franks, administering justice under the shade of some spreading peepul-tree; while the day so passed would be closed with religious rites, and the recital of a mythological epic: he found time for all, never appeared hurried, nor could he be taken by surprise. When he could no longer see to sign his own name, he had an autograph facsimile engraved, which was placed in the special care of a confidential officer, to apply when commanded. Even this loss of one sense was with him compensated by another; for, long after he was stone-blind, it would have been vain to attempt to impose upon him in the choice of shawls or clothes of any kind, whose fabrics and prices he could determine by the touch ; and it is even asserted that he could in like manner distinguish colours.
If, as has been truly remarked, “ that man deserves well of his country, who makes a blade of grass grow where none grew before”, what merit is due to him who made the choicest of nature's products fourish where grass could not grow; who covered the bare rock around his capital with soil, and cultivated the exotics of Arabia, Ceylon, and the western Archipelago; who translated from the Indian Apennines (the mountains of Malabar) the coco-nut and palmyra ; and thus refuted the assertion that these trees could not flourish remote from the influence of a marine atmosphere? In his gardens were to be found the apples and quinces of Cabul, pomegranates from the famed stock of Kagla ca bagh in the desert, oranges of every kind, scions of Agra and Sylhet, the amba of Mazagon, and the chumpa-kéla, or golden plantain of the Dekhan, besides the indigenous productions of Rajpootana. Some of the wells for irrigating these gardens cost in blasting the rock thirty thousand rupees each: he hinted to his friends that they could not do better than follow his example, and a hint always sufficed. He would have obtained a prize from any horticultural society for his improvement of the wild bér (jujube), which by grafting he increased to the size of a small apple. In chemical science he had gained notoriety; his uttrs, or essential oils of roses, jessamine, kétki, and keurá, were far superior to any that could be purchased. There was no occasion to repair to the valley of Cashmere to witness the fabrication of its shawls; for the looms and the wool of that fairy region were transferred to Kotah, and the Cashmerian weaver plied the shuttle under Zalim's own eye. But, as in the case of his lead. mines, he found that this branch of industry did not return even sixteen anas and a half for the rupee, the minimum profit at which he fixed his remuneration; so that, after satisfying his curiosity, he abandoned the manufacture. His forges for swords and fire-arms had a high reputation, and his matchlocks rival those of Boondi, both in excellence and elaborate workmanship.' pp. 586—589.
Col. Tod was detained six months at Kotah by the embarrassing duties of his mission; and during the last four, he had to maintain 'a continued struggle against cholera and fever. He had experienced every vicissitude of temperature in every part of India ; but never, he says, did he feel any thing to be compared with the heat of the dog-days at Kotah.
• It was shortly after we had shifted the camp from the low paddy fields to the embankment of the Kishore sagur (lake), immediately east of the city, that the sky became of that transparent blue which dazzles the eye to look at. Throughout the day and night, there was not a zephyr even to stir a leaf, but the repose and stillness of death. The thermometer was 1049 in the tent, and the agitation of the punka produced only a more suffocating air, from which I have fled, with a sensation bordering on madness, to the gardens at the base of the embankment of the lake. But the shade even of the tamarind or cool plaintain was still less supportable. The feathered tribe, with their beaks opened, their wings flapping or hanging listlessly down, and panting for breath, like ourselves, sought in vain a cool retreat. The horses stood with heads drooping before their untasted provender. Amidst this universal stagnation of life, the only sound which broke upon the horrid stillness, was the note of the cuckoo : it was the first time I had ever heard it in India ; and its cheerful sound, together with the associations it awakened, produced a delightful relief from torments which could not long be endured. We invariably remarked, that the bird opened his note at the period of the greatest heat, about two o'clock in the day, and continued, during intervals, for about an hour, when he changed his quarters, and quitted us. I afterwards became more familiar with this bird ; and every day in the hot weather at Oodipoor, when I resided in one of the villas in the valley, I not only heard, but. frequently saw it.' pp. 663, 4.
The scene of the Author's encampment at Kotah, was at the north-eastern angle of the lake, having in front a fairy islet, adorned with a light · Saracenico pavilion. Gardens fringed the base of the embankment, which is bordered with lofty trees; and over the parapets of the gigantic circumvallation peep the spires and domes of temples and mosques, while some glimpses are caught of the high land beyond the Chumbul. There was also open to them, the range of Madhú Sing's magnificent gardens, many acres in extent, abounding in exotic flowers and fruit, with vast parterres of roses. “But what, exclaims our Author, 'were all these luxuries, conjoined with cholera morbus, and tup
tezarra (tertian fever), and every other fever ?' The delight and enjoyment which these scenes, and the courtesy and homage of the gallant Rajpoots were adapted to inspire, were dearly pur
chased with a perpetuity of ill health. Scarcely any place, Col. Tod says, can be more unhealthy than Kotah during the monsoon.
. With the rise of the Chumbul, whose waters filtrate through the fissures of the rock, the wells are filled with mineral poison and the essence of decomposed vegetation. All those in the low ground at our first encampment, were overflowed from this cause; and the surface of each was covered with an oily pellicle of metallic lustre, whose colours were prismatic, varying, with position or reflection, from shades of a pigeon's breast to every tint of blue blended with gold. It is the same at Oodipoor during the periodical rains, and with similar results, intermittent and tertian fevers, from which not a man, European or native, escaped. They are very obstinate, and, though not often fatal, difficult to extirpate, yielding only to calomel, which perhaps generates a train of evils. pp. 665, 6.
That terrific scourge, the spasmodic cholera, is known in India under the emphatic name of the death (murri). It appears to have visited India repeatedly at distant intervals. A frightful record of its ravages in the year 1661, has been preserved in the native annals of Mewar; and Orme describes it as raging in the Deccan in 1684. "They had likewise a visitation of it in the ' memory of individuals now living. The following note seems to claim transcription.
• Regarding the nature of this disease, whether endemic, epidemic, or contagious, and its cure, we are as ignorant now as on the first day of our experience. There have been hundreds of conflicting opinions and hypotheses, but none satisfactory. In India, nine medical men out of ten, as well as those not professional, deny its being contagious. At Oodi poor, the Rana's only son, hermetically sealed in the palace against contact, was the first seized with the disorder ; a pretty strong proof that it was from atmospheric communication. He was also the last man in his father's dominions likely, from predisposition, to be attacked, being one of the most athletic and prudent of his subjects. I saw him through the disorder. We were afraid to administer remedies to the last heir of Bappa Rawul; but I hinted to Amurji, who was both bard and doctor, that strong doses of musk (12 grains each) might be beneficial. These he had, and I prevented his having cold water to drink, and also checking the insensible perspiration by throwing off the bed-clothes. Nothing but his robust frame and youth made him resist this tremendous assailant.' p. 68, note.
I have had many patients dying about me,' the Author adds in a subsequent note (p. 689); but no man ever dreamed of
contagion. This is not the place to discuss this question ; but the experience of one who had such ample means of forming a correct and unbiassed judgement in the matter, must be allowed to have great weight. On the other hand, although this disease
is clearly transmitted by atmospheric communication, and there is no proof of its being ever communicated by contact with the diseased, it may be spread by a localized infection, and may thus assume the semblance of contagion by becoming in fact, in a sense, endemic in confined spots, where the atmospheric poison has formed a combination with some stagnant moisture or impurity. On its first appearance in our Indian armies, it was for some time fatal only to the intemperate, the ill-fed, or the ill-clothed; but ' we soon discovered,' says the Author, 'that Murri was no ' respecter of persons, and that the prince and the peasant, the * European and the native, the robust and the weak, the well-fed ' and the abstinent were alike subject to her influence. In the states under the ‘Political Agent's' control, it assailed in two instances the palace. The Oodipoor prince, as has been mentioned, recovered, but the Boondi Rao's time was come. The expedient adopted by this Rajpoot prince to keep Murri out of his capital, and the old Regent's mode of expelling her from Kotah, are about on a parallel with the expedients that have been had recourse to as a security against the cholera very near home-in Ireland. Old Zalim Sing • having assembled the Brahmins, astrologers, and those versed in incantations, a grand rite was got up, sacrifice made, and a solemn decree of desvalto (banishment) was pronounced against Murri. Accordingly, an equipage was prepared for her, decorated with funeral emblems, painted black, and drawn by a double team of black oxen; bags of grain, also black, were put into the vehicle, that the lady might not go forth without food, and driven by a man in sable vestments, followed by the yells of the populace. 'Murri was deported across the Chumbul, with the commands of the priests that she should never set foot again in Kotah. No sooner did my deceased friend” (the Boondi Rao) "hear of her expulsion from that capital, and being placed en chemin for Boondí, than the wise men of this city were called on to provide means to keep her from entering therein. Accordingly, all the water of the Ganges at hand was in requisition ; an earthen vessel was placed over the southern portal, from which the sacred water was continually dripping, and against which no evil could prevail. Whether my friend's supply of the holy water failed, or Murri disregarded such opposition, she reached his palace.' pp. 688, 9.
Such instances of the proneness of the heathen to ascribe to imaginary beings the mysterious visitations of disease or other calamity, may enable us to understand the import and force of such declarations as these in the prophetic Scriptures :" I am Jehovah, and there is none else: I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace and create evil.”—“ Shall there be any evil in a city, and Jehovah hath not inflicted it?"... “ I have smitten you with blasting and mildew ... I have sent