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in the system of oppression, that I was advised to a speedy departure, lest I should fall under an inspection. Though much fatigued by an harrassing journey, and the sale of my horse, with other necessary concerns, was to be adjusted, such was the ascendency of my fears, that on the 16th of the month, I was ready to proceed. IN laying before you these scattered pieces of intelligence, I must not forget to notice, that the courtezans and female dancers of the Punjab and Kashmire, or rather a mixed breed of both these countries, are beautiful women, and are held in great estimation through all the northern parts of India: the merchants established at Jumbo, often become so fondly attached to a dancing girl, that, neglećting their occupation, they have been known to dissipate, at her will, the whole of their property; and I have seen some of them reduced to a subsistence on charity; for these girls, in the manner of their profession, are profuse and rapacious. My Kashmirian host, who continued to oppress me with kindness, had a brother living in the same house, who was so much afflićted with the rheumatism, that he could not stir out of his room. Possessing much useful information, with a pleasant sociable temper, I was glad to be admitted to his conversation, which equally amused me, and contributed to a knowledge of this quarter of India. He gave me also some directions for my conduct in Kashmire, which were delivered with an air of candour, and so
apparently apparently void of design, that I should have been ridiculously sceptical in not giving them credit. The day before I left Jumbo, he called me into his room, and in very affectionate language, said, “My friend, you are now about visiting a country, whose inha“bitants are of a charaćter different from any you have hitherto “ seen, and it behoves you to be wary and diligent, for they are “ a subtle and keen people. You must particularly be on your “ guard against my brother, who is now in that country, and “ will probably endeavour to borrow some of your money. Stea“ dily withstand his solicitations, nor lend him a rupee; for if you “ do, the money is lost. Make your disbursements only on the “ delivery of the goods, and, however urgent he is, do not make “ any advance.” He displayed, I thought, a fingular trait of honesty in giving an advice wholly divested of a tendency to promote the interests of his family, at the expence of fair dealing. Thou G if the districts of Buddoo and Chinanah * do not at this day form immediate appendages of Jumbo, they are so intimately dependent on its policy, that to avoid prolixity, I will throw their limits into one description. This united territory is bounded on the north by the river Chinaun, which divides it from Kishtewer; on the east by independent Hindoo distrićts; on the south by Bissouly; and on the west by the Punjab. It
calculation of the Jumbo revenue, as the larger moiety is produced by import and export duties, which are now in a fluêtuating state, and have been diminishing fince the accession of the present chief; but the current information of the country, states. the ordinary receipt at five lacks of rupees, exclusive of the produce of Buddoo and Chinanah. I am, Dear Sir,
THE frequent introdućtion of the Sicques to your notice, will have naturally excited a defire to examine the history of this new and extraordinary people, who within a period of twenty years, have conquered a tract of country, extending in certain direétions from the Ganges to the Indus. My knowledge of the subjećt does not permit me to deduce, on substantial authority, their history from the period in which Nanock their first institutor and law-giver lived, or mark with an order of dates the progress which this people have made, and the varying gradations. of their power, until their attainment of their present state of national importance. You who are apprized of the futility of the documents which compose the general texture of Eastern record,” who have witnessed the irresistible tendency of an Asiatic mind to fiction, and the produce of its dućtile fancy, will grant me an indulgent scope, and will, I trust, believe, that though the body of the history be not complete, such parts only will be noticed, as are either founded on received tradition, or on those legends which have the least exceptionable claims to credit. o UNDER shelter of this preliminary, I will proceed to inform you that Nanock,” the founder of the Sicque nation, was born in the year of the Christian aera, 1469, during the reign of Sultan Beloul, at the village of Tulwundy, f about fixty miles to the westward of Lahore. Nanock appears to have possessed qualities happily adapted to effect the institution of a new system of religion.
* Neither the genius of the people nor the form of their government is favourable to the growth of History, which is rarely seen to flourish on despotic ground, she ačtions of Asiatic princes are usually recorded by their own scribes; and we know that a large portion of the annals of India was manufactured under imperial inspection. It is, therefore, scarcely within the verge of probability, that ... witter, attracted by so powerful an influence, would dared to have thrown the piercing light of History on.
th: the reigning monarch, or even to have examined with freedom the ačtions of his ancestors, who have, for more than two hundred years, maintained an unbroken succession of the Empire of Hindostan. Oriental speech, pregnant with figure, and capable of expressing the wildest flights of fancy, dislains the limits of History. It is better fitted to modulate poetic strains, and describe the wide region of romance; where it can roam without restraint, and happily without the power of committing extensive injuries. . * He was of the Chittery or second cast of Hindoos, and according to a secret belief of the Sicques, a species of secondary incarnation of the Supreme Deity. + A Patan king of Dehli, who reigned previous to Baber's conquest of Hindostan. † This village is now known by the name of Rhaypour. The terms given by the Sicques to their places of worship, are Sunghut, Durnsallah, and Dairah, words fignifying, in the Hinduee, an assembly of the people, a charitable or pious foundation, and a house. This last appellation seems to be applied in an eminent sense, as “ the “house.” The Sicques, in commemoration of the place of Nanock's birth, have erected an edifice at Tulwundy, where a grand festival is annually celebrated.