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missionaries were often much discouraged by receiving to all they urged, only that monotonous answer, Nisam,' that is, 'most certain,' and finding that it meant but little more than the unmeaning sounds of a parrot or an infant; and, to draw a distant but obvious parallel that may confirm Heber's argument, England, Scotland, and Wales became Protestant countries more easily than Ireland, because the men who propagated in those lands the reformed doctrines were their fellow-countrymen, and spoke home to their direct sympathies; Ireland, on the other hand, has never become entirely Protestant, because in the first instance the purer religion was inculcated by English teachers, to whose precepts and manners all the nationality of the Irish was opposed.
Bishop Heber's account of the native idols, in the journal before alluded to, is much too graphic to be omitted.
He says, 'Most of the Hindu idols are of clay, and very much resemble, in composition, colouring, and execution, though of course not in form, the more paltry kind of images which are carried about in England for sale by the Lago di Como people. At certain times of the year, a great number of these are, in fact, hawked about Calcutta in the same manner, on men's heads. This is before they have been consecrated, which takes place on their being solemnly washed in the Ganges by a Brahmin pundit. Till this happens, they possess no sacred character, and are frequently given as toys to children, and used as ornaments to rooms; which, when hallowed, they could not be without giving great offence to every Hindu who saw them so employed,
I thought it remarkable that, though most of the male deities are represented of a deep brown colour, the females are usually no less red and white than our porcelain beauties as exhibited in England. But it is evident, from the expressions of most of the Indians themselves, from the style of their amatory poetry, and other circumstances, that they consider fairness as a part of beauty and a proof of noble blood. “They do not like to be called black, and though the Abyssinians, who are sometimes met with in the country, are very little darker than they them. selves, they fill their jest-books full of taunts on the charcoal complexion of the “ Hubshee.”.
The bishop's first attendance on the Durbar, or native levee of Lord Amherst, the Governor-general, is also described in the journal.
*I found,' says he, on my arrival, that the levee had begun, and that Lord Amherst had already walked down one side of the room where the persons of most rank, and who were to receive “Khelâts," or honorary dresses, were stationed. I therefore missed this ceremony, but joined him and walked round those to whom he had not yet spoken, comprising some persons of considerable rank and wealth, and some learned men, travellers from different eastern countries, who each in turn addressed his compliments, petitions, or complaints to the Governor. There were several whom we thus passed who spoke English, not only fluently but gracefully. Among these were Baboo Ramchunder Roy, and his four brothers, all fine tall stout young men, the eldest of whom is about to build one of Mr. Shakespear's ropebridges over the Caramassa.'
The rope-bridges, mentioned here by the Bishop, were constructed on the principle of a ship's standing rigging; and were somewhat on the same theory as chain bridges; though, in two important principles, differing from those constructions.
The rope-bridges in India have no abutments, and can be taken to pieces, and moved on camels and elephants from any one point to another. The materials employed in their construction are simple cordage, iron, and bamboos.
The centre portion is constructed slightly raised in the middle; the whole resting on flat timbers, and strong enough to stand any test..
Farther on in the journal, Dr. Heber again mentions them, and gives the following account of one over a torrent near Benares. The Bishop's journal says:
During last year's inundation, when, if ever, the cordage might have been expected to suffer from the rain, and when a vast crowd of neighbouring villagers took refuge on it, as the only safe place in the neighbourhood, it was almost the only object that continued to hold itself above the water.'
To continue his account of the Durbar, before proceeding to narrate his visitation through his diocese:
• After Lord Amherst had completed the circle, he stood on the lower steps of the throne, and the visitors advanced, one by one, to take leave.
*First came a young Rajah of the Rajapootana district, who had received that day the investiture of his father's territories, in a splendid brocade, khelât, and turban; he was a little shy pale-looking
boy of twelve years old. Lord Amherst, in addition to these splendid robes, placed a large diamond aigrette in his turban, and tied a string of valuable pearls round his neck, then gave him a small bottle of attar of roses, and a lump of pawa, or betel, wrapped up in a plaintain leaf.
Next came forward the “ vakeel” or envoy of the Maharajah Scindeah; also a boy, self-possessed and dandy-looking. His khelât and presents were a little less splendid than those of his precursor.
* Then followed Oude, Nagpoor, Nepaul, each followed by their vakeels; and each in turn was honoured by similar, but less splendid, marks of attention.
“The next was a Persian Khân--a fine militarylooking man, rather corpulent, and of a complexion not differing from that of a Turk, or other southern European--with a magnificent black beard, and a very pleasing and animated address.
On the whole, it was a striking and interesting sight, though less magnificent than I had expected; and less so, I think, than the levee of a European monarch.
The sameness of the greater part of the dresses (white muslin) was not sufficiently relieved by the splendour of the few khelats; and even these, which were of gold and silver brocade, were eclipsed by the scarlet and blue uniforms, gold lace and feathers of the English.'
Such were Heber's first impressions of native magnificence.
He looked on outward show with the dispassionate judgement of one who saw beneath it all the ignorance
prejudice, and degraded state of the natives, and the fatal mode of government pursued by the English rulers.
How he must have contrasted the scene, with his far different mode of life at Hodnet, or his boyhood at school.
In the April of this year, 1824, Heber entered his forty-second year, and in the following June started on his first visitation to the Upper Provinces. He determined to let nothing deter him from a rigid investigation of the diocese, and would willingly have travelled quite unattended except by his chaplains and interpreter. This, however, was considered unsuitable to his position; as that of the bishop was very properly considered one of the four highest posts in India. His course was to be conducted chiefly by water, in a simple Bengalee bark.
The decks of these rude but fast sailing little boats, are made entirely of bamboo; and a kind of cottage or cabin, chiefly made of cane and straws, forms the sleeping-room, kitchen, and dining-room for the whole party who travel by them.
The boatmen guide the bark from an upper deck, that is raised six or seven feet above the roof of the cabin, which would not otherwise be strong enough to sustain their weight. Their oars are merely long bamboos, with circular ends. Insuch a rough dangerous-looking conveyance did Heber begin his long and arduous travels.
He went first to Benares, which he describes as more entirely oriental than any place he had hitherto visited. Here he appointed more missionaries, and was pleased to find from the information given him by