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grossly misrepresented, not only by the English public in general, but by a great proportion of those also, who, though they have been in India, have taken their views of its population, manners, and productions from Calcutta, or at most from Bengal. I had always heard, and fully believed till I came to India, that it was a grievous crime, in the opinion of the Brahmins, to eat the flesh or shed the blood of any living creature whatever. I have now myself seen Brahmins of the highest caste cut off the heads of goats as a sacrifice to Doorga; and I know, from the testimony of Brahmins, as well as from other sources, that not only hecatombs of animals are often offered in this manner as a most meritorious act, (a Raja, about twenty-five years back, offered sixty thousand in one fortnight,) but that any person, Brahmins not excepted, eats readily of the flesh of whatever has been offered up to one of their divinities, while among almost all the other castes, mutton, pork, venison, fish, any thing but beef and fowls, are consumed as readily as in Europe. Again, I had heard all my life of the gentle and timid Hindoos, patient under injuries, servile to their superiors, &c. Now, this is doubtless, to a certain extent, true of the Bengalese, (who, by the way, are never reckoned among the nations of Hindostan, by those who speak the language of that country,) and there are a great many people in Calcutta who maintain that all the natives of India are alike. But even in Bengal, gentle as the exterior manners of the people are, there are large districts close to Calcutta, where the work of carding, burning, ravishing, murder, and robbery, goes on as systematically, and in nearly the same manner, as in the worst part of Ireland ; and on entering Hindostan, properly so called, which in the estimation of the natives reaches from the Rajmahal hills to Agra, and from the mountains of Kemaoon to Bundelcund, I was struck and surprised to find a people equal in stature and strength to the average of European nations, despising rice and rice-eaters, feeding on wheat and barley bread, exhibiting in their appearance, conversation, and habits of life, a grave, proud, and, decidedly, a martial character, accustomed universally to the use of arms and athletic exercises from their cradles, and preferring, very greatly, military service to any other means of livelihood. Another instance of this want of information, which at the time of my arrival excited much talk in Bengal, was the assertion made in Parliament, I forget by whom, that “ there was little or no sugar cultivated in India, and that the sugar mostly used there came from Sumatra and Java.” Now this even the cockneys of Calcutta must have known to be wrong, and I can answer for myself, that in the whole range of my journey, from Dacca to Delhi, and thence through the greater part of Rajpootana and Malwah, the raising of sugar is as usual a part of husbandry, as turnips or potatoes in England ; and that they prepare it in every form, except the loaf, which is usually met with in Europe.'
Of the state of the Schools, and of Education in general, he speaks rather favourably; and is very desirous that, without any direct attempt at conversion, the youth should be generally exposed to the horizing influence of the New Testament morality, by the
ion of that holy book, as a
lesson book in the schools; a matter to which he states positively that the natives, and even their Brahminical pastors, have no sort of objection. Talking of a female school, lately established at Calcutta, under the charge of a very pious and discreet lady, he observes, that 'Rbadacant Deb, one of the wealth• iest natives in Calcutta, and regarded as the most austere 6 and orthodox of the worshippers of the Ganges, bade, some
time since, her pupils go on and prosper; and added, that “ if hos they practised the Sermon on the Mount as well as they re6 66 peated it, he would choose all the handmaids for his daugh65 ters, and his wives, from the English school.”.
He is far less satisfied with the administration of Justice, especially in the local or district courts, called Adawlut, which the costliness and intricacy of the proceedings, and the needless introduction of the Persian language, have made sources of great practical oppression, and objects of general execration throughout the country. At the Bombay Presidency, Mr Elphinstone has discarded the Persian, and appointed every thing to be done in the ordinary language of the place.
And here we are afraid we must take leave of this most instructive and delightful publication; which we confidently recommend to our readers, not only as more likely to amuse them than any book of travels with which we are acquainted, but as calculated to enlighten their understandings, and to touch their hearts with a purer flame than they generally catch from most professed works of philosophy or devotion. It sets before us, in every page, the most engaging example of devotion to God and good-will to man; and, touching every object with the light of a clear judgment and a pure heart, exhibits the rare spectacle of a work written by a priest upon religious creeds and establishments, without a shade of intolerance, and bringing under review the characters of a vast multitude of eminent individuals, without one trait either of sarcasm or adulation.
Of the other work, the title of which we have been led to prefix from the connexion of the subject, we have left ourselves room to say little, and, in truth, have but little to say. It is a very clever and instructive pamphlet, in support of the justice and policy of allowing an absolutely free trade to India, together with an unlimited right to settle and to hold land in that country. It is written in the tone of an advocate no doubt, with some acrimony perhaps, and perhaps with some exaggeration; but with singular spirit, clearness, and brevity; and rested throughout on such an imposing array of facts, as must be a little startling to those to whom they are opposed, and invaluable to all