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the Arabs, satisfied with the display of valour which they had already made, capitulated on the condition of being allowed to march out with their baggage and private property. As none of these transactions could be brought home to Appa Saheb, he was not made responsible for them. On the surrender of Nagpore he was liberated, and received notice of the terms on which he would be allowed to retain his seat on the guddee. These consisted in his being placed entirely on the same footing with the nizam; having his military force subjected to the control of the company, and even his ministers appointed by them. The rajah expressed his dissatisfaction only by offering to retire altogether on a liberal pension; but this was not considered admissible. He forthwith began to intrigue, with the view of shaking off this hated dependence. Troops were levied, the governors of fortresses and the mountain-chiefs were instructed to muster their forces, and give every possible annoyance to the English; finally, a secret correspondence was discovered with Bajee Rao, who, being invited to join his army to the standard of the peishwa, had actually taken steps for that purpose. Mr. Jenkins hereupon deemed it indispensable to call upon Appa to resume his place within the residency; and this not being complied with, a party was sent who effected his arrest, fortunately without having recourse to violence. It is less difficult, however, to seize Indian chiefs than to keep them; the rajah being mildly treated, and access procured to him by several of his adherents, a plan was arranged for his escape in the disguise of a sepoy. He went off at two in the morning, and the discovery was not made till daylight; so that, relays of horses having been provided, all pursuit was vain. As the Pindaree war, however, was now terminated, and Bajee Rao reduced to the last extremity, he was unable to do more than excite desultory hostilities in the mountainous districts. The English were thus able, on their own terms, to place on the guddee Bajee Rao, a grandson of Raghojee Bhonslay, while the administration was placed entirely under their own control. Since the termination of the Pindaree contest no important event or acquisition has distinguished the history of Bri'ish power in Hindostan. The only war undertaken on CAPTURE OF BHTJRTPORE. 207
a great scale was the arduous but finally successful one with the Birman empire, by which the company gained a considerable territory along the Bay of Bengal. There occurred, however, one hostile movement, the narrative of which must not be omitted. After the death of the Rajah of Bhurtpore in 1825, his legitimate heir, Bulwunt Singh, being dethroned by Doorjun Sal, his cousin, applied for aid to Sir David Ochterlony, then resident at Delhi. That officer embraced the prince's cause; but his conduct in doing so was disavowed by the governor-general, Lord Amherst, who showed a disposition to proceed upon the old principle of non-interference. Further information, however, induced him to change this intention, and Lord Combermere was ordered to march upon the city and expel the usurper. This able commander accordingly, with 25,000 men and an ample train of artillery, proceeded to attack that celebrated fortress. The siege was begun on the 23d December; but it was soon found that cannon-shot could not penetrate mud-walls sixty feet thick, and that it would be necessary to employ mining operations. By means of these a breach was effected on the 17th January, 1826; the assault was given next morning, and after a gallant defence of two hours, in which many veterans who had triumphantly fought in the former siege took an active part, the place was carried; Doorjun was made prisoner; and there remained no longer in Hindostan a fortress that had successfully defied the British arms. While this conflict lasted a general ferment was observable among the surrounding principalities; and Bishop Heber doubts not, that had the attack failed, the whole country westward of the Jumna would have risen in arms, at least so far as to resume the predatory system of warfare. This triumph, however, checked the disposition to revolt, and completely confirmed the supremacy of Britain over the whole of India.
CHAPTER VI. Hindoo History and Mythology. General Aspect of the Hindoo People—Absence of authentic History— Historical Poems Indian Chronology—Series of Dynasties—Mythology—Ideas of the Divine Nature—Bramah—Vishnu—His Avatars or Transformations—Siva—Doorga—Kalee—Minor Deities—Worship of Rivers—Of the Brute Creation—A Future State—Transmigration of Souls—Ancient Temples—Elephanta—Kenneri—Carli—Ellora—Mababatlpoor— Pagoda at Tanjore—Temples in Rajpootana—Modern Structures—Religious Rites—Mendicity—Pilgrimages—Penances— Self-immolation—Idol Cars—Suttee—Infanticide—Hindoo Sects— Vishnuvites—Sivites—Boodhists—Seiks—Native Christians—Jews.
Having thus traced the varying fortunes of India, till nearly the whole of that vast empire was subjected to British control, we shall now attempt to delineate its social and political condition, both as respects its own numerous population, and the military and civil arrangements by means of which the conquerors hold it in subjection. In this survey, the most conspicuous object is that native race, celebrated from all antiquity, who still form a vast majority of its inhabitants. The Hindoos, in the wide extent of territory over which they are spread, present many varied aspects; yet a striking similarity of religion, of language diversified only by dialects, of manners and institutions, and even in some degree of external form, proclaim them to be throughout the same people. Amid great blemishes, too, they have undeniably, with the exception of the European nations, or those sprung from Europe, attained a degree of civilization, and made a progress in the arts, beyond any other people. Of orientals, the Chinese alone can enter into competition with them; yet though the polity and institutions of that people claim, in some respects, even a pre-eminence, they do not, on the whole, exhibit a character so intellectual and interesting. It would have been desirable to introduce a sketch of the history of the Hindoos prior to that of their Mohammedan
conquerors and rulers. But there exist no materials suited to the accomplishment of such a purpose. Amid the voluminous writings of the Hindoos, we find the most lamentable deficiency of historical records. Previous to the establishment of Moslem dominion, these appear only through the .vail of a mythology at once poetical and extravagant. The theology, history, poetry, literature, and social condition of this remarkable people are all so closely interwoven, as to make it impossible satisfactorily to consider any one, unless in connexion with all the rest. The Hindoos, it must be admitted, possess ancient works, which are generally believed to present somewhat of an historical character. Such are a great part of the Puranas, and the singular compositions termed the Mahabarat and the Ramayana. Yet these are religious poems, exhibiting the actions of gods, not of men, and leading the reader through a maze of wonder and mystery. The deities and heroes whose exploits they celebrate appear indeed to have been ancient monarchs who held sway over India; but the details are so palpably fabulous, and at the same time so childishly absurd, as to be unfit for any of the objects of genuine history. They convey no idea of the character of the actors, the manners of the age, or the train of human events. The system of Indian chronology, though it bears a character equally extravagant, has yet, from its apparent research and imposing aspect, excited much attention among the sages of Europe. The reader will learn from Professor Wallace's treatise in the third volume, their measurement of time by astronomical epochs, manwantaras, days of Brama, and years of the gods. It is enough to remark in this place, that the Maha Yug, or great divine age, through which mankind are now passing, consists of four human ages, the last and worst of which is at present revolving. These ages, of unequal and continually decreasing length, are the
Satya Yug, which lasted 1,788,000 years.
Trela Yug 1,296,000
Dwapar Yug 864,000
Cali Yug, which ia to last 432,000
Of the dark era in which we live, only about five thousand years have yet elapsed. Of the satya yug, the golden age of innocence, there remains only a dim and pleasing tradition; the great flood, said to have arrived at its close, having 210
■wept away almost all its memorials. But the Indian annals, such as they are, extend over the entire series of the treta and dwapar yugs, and consequently comprehend a period considerably exceeding two millions of years. This chronology has been embraced with eager credulity by a number of learned men in Europe, who have proclaimed that all the nations of the West are only of yesterday, when compared with the boundless ages through which the Hindoo records extend. There is, however, one circumstance which breaks at once the spell of this imaginary duration. Although India possesses nothing which can approach to the character of history, many of her princes and great men preserve lists of kings, which, from their coincidence, though found in different and distant quarters, appear to be substantially correct. These extend through the whole of the three ages; but instead of that almost endless roll of names which ought to have been supplied during two millions of years, we find, by Mr. Bentley's list, in the treta only sixty-six, and in the dwapar forty-seven kings; consequently, the potentates of the first period must have had an average reign of 19,636; those of the second of 18,383 years. It is maintained, indeed, on the faith of tradition, that Yadhisthur, the great hero, held sway during upwards of twenty-seven thousand years. But if we assign to the Indian monarchs the average of human life, we shall reduce these ages to an extent perfectly consistent with European history and the Mosaic records. Mr. Bentley considers seventeen years as the mean length of a reign in a long series of princes. Even should we, with Colonel Tod, allow from twenty to twenty-two years, the Indian dynasties will not pass the limits of our established chronology. Although we find thus transmitted from an early period lists of Hindoo kings which may be considered tolerably authentic, the details, as already observed, are either too meager or too extravagant to be of any value as materials for history. A few very general outlines can alone be traced. Two races of monarchs are recorded as claiming descent respectively from Surya and Indu, the sun and the moon. The former established their metropolis at Ayodhia, the modern Oude, still a large city, and described as then of immense extent. The lunar branch had several succet