Imágenes de páginas
[graphic][merged small]

Eltham Palace was, undoubtedly, one of the most traced further, proceeding in the same direction. The perfect specimens of a castellated mansion ever erected remains of two iron gates, completely carbonized, in this country. Its situation, on an eminence of were found in that part of the passage under the greater elevation than any in the neighbourhood, moat, and large stalactites, formed of super-carbonate except Shooter's Hill, in some measure protected it of lime, hung down from the roof of the arch, which against any sudden attack, whilst the recent disco- sufficiently indicate the lapse of time since these very of the commencement of a series of subterra- passages were entered. The height of the passages nean passages, probably of very great extent, pre- varies materially, arising, probably, from the imperviously alluded to, evinces the care that was bestowed fect clearance of the rubbish ; in some places they in providing means for the security of the royal inha- reach nearly six feet, whilst in others they are conbitants, in case of treason or other emergency. siderably under five feet. There is a tradition, that

The existence of a series of under-ground passages, at Middle Park, through which the passages are running in the direction of Blackheath to Greenwich, believed to run, there were several under-ground had long been popularly believed ; but nothing cer- apartments, of sufficient extent to accommodate tain was known on the subject until (we believe) the sixty horses. spring of 1834, when accident led to the discovery. Our feelings and impressions whilst traversing Since that period Mr. A. B. Clayton, the architect, these narrow and gloomy vaults, leading to an unand Dr. David King, have taken an active interest in known distance, shut out from the cheerful light of the exploration of these military stratagems of the day, and perhaps not trodden by the foot of man, middle ages, and, at their own cost, have cleared for several centuries, until a short time before our about 700 feet of the passages, which were partially visit were vivid and interesting. We had before us filled with rubbish.

a realization, at all events in one instance, of the traThe writer of this article, accompanied by some ditionary stories appertaining to so many of our old friends, lately explored these passages. We descended mansions and castles, hitherto disbelieved; romantic a ladder below a trap-door, in the yard on the south and undefinable thoughts and recollections passed front of the hall, and entered a subterranean room, across our mind, and, for the moment, we ten feet by five, from whence a narrow arched pas- transported, in imagination, to THE PAST. sage, of about ten feet in length, conducted us “ to


We are disposed to assign the date of these vaults a series of passages, with decoys, stairs, and shafts, to that of the reign of Edward the Second, at the some of which are vertical, and others on an in- commencement of the fourteenth century. clined plane, which were once used for admitting air, We cannot conclude this hasty notice of an edifice and for hurling down missiles or pitch-balls," with of considerable historical interest, without expressing deadly effect in case of attack, 'according to the mode a hope that the highly laudable zeal of Messrs. of defence practised in the old time. Much skill is Clayton and King, in the investigation of one of its observable in the construction of these shafts, for they most remarkable features, will be seconded by that “verge and concentrate at points where weapons from of others. above could assail the enemy the most successfully. About 500 feet of passage have been entered and passed through, in a direction west towards Middle

LONDON. Park, and under the moat for 200 feet. The arch is


PUBLISHED IN WEEKLY NUMBERS, PRICE ONE PENNY, AND IN MONTHLY Parts broken into in the field leading from Eltham to Mot

FBICE SIXPENCE, AND tingham, but still the brick-work of the arch can be Sold by all Booksellers and Newsvepders in the Kingdom


[ocr errors]


[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]



[graphic][merged small]


brought from the Ganges. This is thrown over the THERE is no country upon earth where pilgrims and idol every morning, and then sold at a great price to the devotees of every description abound so much as in devout who can afford to purchase so costly a blessing. Hindoostan. Will this be a matter of surprise, when

The persons who make their periodical pilgrimages it is known, that the gods of the Hindoo Pantheon to the holy river, generally form processions, exhibitamount in number to three hundred and thirty | ing rather an agreeable scene to the traveller. They millions. Not a day passes in this “land of sunshine are attired in their newest garments; their baskets and of storm,” but some festival is celebrated; and are adorned with feathers from the tail of the venethe entire lives of thousands of enthusiasts are passed rated peacock, and each party has one among them in performing the revolting discipline of a devotion, of superior dignity, who proceeds under an arched which consists not only of numerous absurd and screen, ornamented internally with bells, and exterfantastic ceremonies, but frequently of the most pro- nally decorated with peacocks' plumes. "At nightfane and sanguinary rites.

fall,” says Captain Luard *, “many hundreds bivouac Of the multitude of devotees and pilgrims in India, together in the magnificent mango-groves on the some idea may be formed, when it has been ascer road-side. After sunset, in the cool of the evening, tained, that in the province of Bengal, alone, the at the ringing of a bell, they assemble in groups for number of mendicants--and mendicity is here a reli- prayers, and the noisy camp is instantly converted gious vocation-amounts to upwards of two millions. into a silent and most imposing scene of devotion.” These persons are entirely supported by alms. Thus, These pilgrimages are not confined to the poor, destisupposing each person to obtain only a shilling per tute and uninformed, to whom the excitement of week, the gross sum would amount to more than superstition is a welcome relief from the actual five millions annually, and this, too, extracted, for bereavements to which a most pernicious social the most part, from the small earnings of the labour- system so sadly dooms the vast majority of the ing classes, of which poverty is at once the distinc- | Hindoo population ; but the rich, the independent, tion and the heritage. The extent to which mendicity and the learned, likewise swell the processions of is carried, even among the Brahmins, in Bengal devotion annually made to so many revolting shrines. especially, is scarcely to be conceived ; and the airs The men represented in the print, resemble what of authority which these sturdy beggars assume, are

are called Bangy IVallahs, a superior order of porters, as arrogant as they are disgusting. Such is their distinguished from the Coolies, the lowest of that ascendency over the minds of the superstitious popu- class, by carrying their burdens upon the shoulder, lation, that they levy, as has been already shown, an while the latter always bear them upon their heads. enormous tax in this way, almost universally, and So rigidly are these distinctive customs observed in from that portion of the community which can with India, that in many cases a Bangy Wallah would difliculty procure the common necessaries of life. rather forfeit his life, than submit to the degradation

Begging holds a conspicuous place among the reli- of bearing, like the cooly, a load upon his head. gious obligations of the Hindoos; with some classes, it During their pilgrimages, the crowds, at particular forms the main feature of their spiritual discipline; places, are so great, that a year never passes without indeed, none of their sacred community can attain the sacrifice of a vast number of lives, and those who the supreme rank of spiritual distinction, except happen to be the victims upon these occasions, are through this despicable occupation. The Yogues, considered fortunate in having obtained so holy a so highly esteemed for their sanctity, are, univer- martyrdom. Although the Ganges is every where sally, mendicants; and so complete is their in-sacred, yet there are particular spots especially fluence over the vulgar, that these latter esteem it devoted to pilgrimages, and such are holy above all an enviable privilege to be permitted to administer to / others. Hurdwar or Haridwar, as it is more properly the necessities of those holy men. It is considered a designated, is the most venerated place in the estipositive degradation for a devotee of any repute to mation of all pious Hindoos. It is situated on the submit to the drudgery of an honest trade. Thus it west side of the Ganges, where it issues into the happens, that these sacred persons are the most plains of Hindoostan, from the northern hills. Haridindolent, arrogant, and too often the most sensual war signifies the Gate of God, the word Hari being wretches alive. It is impossible to help feeling that an appellative applied to each of the three persons in the mendicant fraternities, belonging to a branch of the Hindoo triad, although more usually to Vishnu. the Christian church, must have derived their origin

in At some of these annual assemblies the crowd is from these Eastern idolaters. The coincidence is too prodigious. In 1796, it was said to amount to strong to be accidental. The begging friars may upwards of two millions and a half, although the certainly claim the sanction of heathen, though they place does not probably contain a thousand houses ; cannot of apostolic antiquity.

but the great majority of visiters sleep in the open During the cold season, pilgrimages from all parts, air, under the shelter of trees, or under rude tents, especially of Upper India, are performed to the during the continuance of the concourse. At the Ganges. The roads on the banks of the river, at this festival in 1814, several hundred persons were period, are crowded with devotees, proceeding in large crushed to death, owing to their impetuosity in groups to the holy stream. They are usually well a struggle for priority in taking the sacred bath. dressed, carrying on their shoulders a thick bamboo, The street leading to the river was so narrow, and from which, at either end, is suspended a frame, the rush so tremendous, that many were suffocated, generally of coarse ratan-work, containing a spherical and others trampled to death by the pressure of the wicker-basket, covered, and filled with provisions and crowd. Since this awful catastrophe, the passage, iu other necessaries for the journey. Upon their return, which the principal mischief took place, has been globular jars of earthenware are placed within these enlarged by command of the British government, in baskets, and the sacred water of the Ganges is carried order to facilitate the access to the river. An addiin them, frequently to the distance of many hundred tional flight of steps has been also built, so as to miles, for the services of their temples. There is a obviate all likelihood of a similar accident. It created pagoda on the island of Ramisseram, scarcely above a great sensation at the time, among the superstitious a degree from the southern extremity of the Indian

In his Series of Views in India, to which beautiful work we are peninsula, in which no water is used but what is again indebted for our frontispiece.

[ocr errors]

devotees, who were unable to account for ́so severe a

COMPARISON OF MEN WITH ANIMALS. visitation : while some of the more fanatic among Of all the species of animals which exist on the them looked upon it as an involuntary holocaust on surface of the earth, man alone exhibits an excessive the part of the sufferers, preordained by Siva himself, disparity in his attainments at remote periods of his and likely to render him the more propitious towards history." In animals, each individual attains the those who had survived this wholesale destruction. complete use of all its faculties; and this, even During these annual meetings, the most deadly con- though successive generations of the tribe be sepatests frequently take place between the votaries of rated from each other by a long lapse of time. With Vishnu and Siva, and so sanguinary have these reli- many animals, nothing in the shape of instruction is gious conflicts occasionally been, that, as I was needed. The insect-tribes at once proceed in the assured by a Brahmin of Bengal, upwards of eight course that nature has designed for them. No thousand persons were destroyed upon one occasion, sooner does the egg burst, than the larva sets itself somewhere I think about the latter end of the last about the business of its existence; it swims expertly century, within the short space of three days.

through the water, and seeks out its appropriate Benares *, or Casi the Splendid, is the next sacred food. Led by an unerring instinct, it approaches the spot. This celebrated city, is said, in the Brahminical surface of the pool, or climbs the stalk of some traditions, to have been built of gold, but in conse- aquatic plant, and ere the spectator has time to mark quence of the sins of the people, it became stone, and the change, it launches off into an untried element, latterly, owing to their increasing wickedness, it has and is undistinguished amid the thousands that have become clay. No earthquake is ever felt within its had the long experience of an hour. Some again holy limits, and in consequence of its peculiar posi- wake to life in the tough bark, and eat their tion, it escaped destruction during a partial over vermicular way through the sap-wood; till when the whelming of the world. With such a high character metamorphosis draws near, they suck the outerfor sanctity, it is no wonder that Benares is a rind, cut it with their mandibles, elevate their elytra, favourite place of resort for devout worshippers, and unfold from beneath their delicate wings, and use half-crazed enthusiasts. The whole face of the city with the utmost ease their newly-acquired powers which lines the bank of the river, is one continued and senses. series of ghauts, for the accommodation of Pilgrims. Ascending (as it is termed) the scale of existence,

Allahabad is another sacred place. “Here, when we find the elements of tuition begin to appear. The a pilgrim arrives," says Hamilton," he first sits birds, for the most part, educate their young; they down on the brink of the river, and has his head and lead them by short flights to seek their food, and only body shaved, so that each hair may fall into the abandon them after their powers are fully developed. water, the sacred writings promising him one million The same remark holds good of many of the of years' residence in heaven for every hair thus quadrupeds. In all cases, however, the powers deposited. After shaving, he bathes, and the same arrived at are nearly the same, with each individual day, or the next, performs the obsequies of his of a species. But when we reach the top of the scale, deceased ancestors."

how different! The young of the human species -The most celebrated place for pilgrimages in India, receives not merely that tuition which is common to is the Temple of Jagganath, in the Province of all mammalia, but also a distinct kind of education, Orissa, of which a detailed account was given in which conveys the fruits of the experience of all the the first Volume of the Saturday Magazine. It is preceding generations. Man lives to add to that difficult to ascertain the number of victims yearly experience, and though his physical powers reach to sacrificed under the wheels of the ponderous car their full developement, the entire man knows nothing which bears the Idol of Jagganath, but they are some of maturity. Powers of which our ancestors were years said to exceed two thousand, though this is ignorant, are now wielded by us, while we, in our not, I believe, common. Numbers of pilgrims perish turn, are opening the way for other and more tranon the road to this sanguinary shrine, and their scendent powers to be employed by our descendants. bodies generally remain unburied. “On a plain by The burrowing bee still uses the same instrument the river,” says Buchanan, near the pilgrims' cara to pierce the downright shaft, and to cluster round vansera at this place, there are more than a hundred it the beautifully smoothed cells. Still she selects skulls. The dogs, jackals, and vultures seem to live the hard-beaten soil, whence the wind may sweep the on human prey." Nothing can exceed the disgusting dust that otherwise would betray her labours. The Saturnalia here witnessed during the procession of sand-spider still uses the same cement to form the the sacred car. It is truly horrible to behold those walls of her retreat, and to weave her branchy net. But immolations of which Southey has given so just a man is found at one time burying himself in the picture in his immortal poem, The Curse of Kehama. ground, at another tearing the rocks asunder to rear A thousand pilgrims strain

magnificent palaces. Here he draws his sustenance Arm, shoulder, breast, and thigh, with might and main, from the ocean, there he cultivates the ground; here To drag that sacred wain,

he clothes himself in the skin of the wild beast, And scarce can draw along the enormous load. Prone fall the frantic votaries in its road,

there he wears the delicate web, and prides himself And calling on the God,

in the splendour of his apparel. With man there is Their self-devoted bodies there they lay

no permanence; every thing is changing, and each To pave his chariot-way.

season adds to his powers and comfort. He seems On Jagganath they call

to possess an endless variety of appetites, that are The ponderons car rolls on and crushes all.

only called into action as opportunity offers for their Through blood and bones it ploughs its dreadful path, Groans rise unheard; the dying cry,

gratification ; there lurks within him an immense And death and agony

ariety of powers, of which only a few are called into Are 'trodden under foot by that mad throng,

active use by any individual. Who follow close and thrust the deadly wheels along. Among animals the history of an individual is

The places visited by pilgrims in India, are almost almost the history of the race; but the story of the innumerable ; but those which I have mentioned are life of man is ever changing; and the mode of living among the most celebrated.'

Man is J. H. C. of one nation appears incredible to another. * See Saturday Magazine, Vol. V., p. 194,

possessed of a highly muscular and pliable form,


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

capable of enduring long and vigorous exertion ; the tenderness of his limbs prohibits the direct employment of his powers. The animals are invariably supplied with instruments fit for the various operations they have to perform. The bee has the proboscis to reach the nectary; the burrowing animals have claws for digging the earth, and the beasts of prey for tearing their food. But man works by tools. The capability of employing inanimate matter, of making it, at it were, a part of himself, is peculiar to man; only faint traces of that power are to be perceived among the animal tribes. In man it is completely developed ; for, on reflection, we at once perceive that almost every operation which we perform, is done by the assistance of tools of one kind or another.

[Edinburgh Philosophical Journal.]


The water of Egypt, (says the Abbé Mascrier,) is so delicious, that one would not wish the heat should be less, nor to be delivered from the sensation of thirst. The Turks find it so exquisitely charming that they excite themselves to drink of it by eating salt. It is a common saying among them, that if Mohammed had drunk of it, he would have begged God not to have died, that he might always have done it. When the Egyptians undertake the pilgrimage of Mecca, or go out of their country on any other account, they speak of nothing but the pleasure they shall find at their return, in drinking the Nile water. There is nothing to be compared to this satisfaction ; it surpasses in their esteem that of seeing their relations again, and their families. All those who have tasted this water, allow that they never met with the like in any other place. When a person drinks of it for the first time, it seems difficult to believe that it is not a water prepared by art. It has something in it so inexpressibly agreeable and pleasing to the taste, that it deserves that rank among waters ibat Champagne has among wines. But its most valuable quality is that it is exceedingly salutary: It never incommodes, let it be drunk in what quantity it may; this is so true that it is no uncommon thing to see some persons drink three buckets of it in a day, without inconvenience!

It is right to observe that the water of the Nile is that which is alone intended in these high encomiums. Wellwater in Egypt is detestable and unwholesome. Fountains are so rare that they are a kind of prodigy in that country. Rain-water it would be vain to attempt preserving, as scarcely any falls in Egypt

How iarly forcible and expressive are the words of Moses to Pharaoh. “ The Egyptians shall lothe to drink of the water of the river.” That water in which they so much delighted, -that which they preferred to all other water in the world, and to which they had been so long accustomed, should become so hateful, that they would turn away from it in disdain, and instead of it drink well. water, which, in their country, is, of all other kinds of water, the most detestable !

0. N. [Harmer's Observations.]


I ENVY not the man who drawg
His bliss from Popular Applause,
E'en when I see such Fortune shed
Her gaudiest honours on his head.
And why? She's but a treach'rous thing,
Ready to spread her recreant wing,
And steal the peace she cannot bring.

“ What, then," you cry, “is man to close
His ears against the praise of those
Whose welfare (in the gen'ral weal)
Thrives by his efforts; and to steel
His heart against a grateful cheer ?"
No! But I'll make my meaning clear.

'Tis one thing for a being form'd
For worthy fame, by glory warm'd,
Encouraged in his course, to feel
The joy that springs from prosp'rons zeal,
And to peruse, with meek surprise,
He values, though he will not court,
The treasure of a good report ;
He spurns not, with a brow austere,
The meed bestowed on toils severe,
But further looks, and cannot live
In the false air mere honours give.

'Tis one thing, seeing round us rise
Flow'rs that make earth a paradise,
And which the humble in their sphere
Who little think it, yet may rear :
For a good name, wherever found,
Is sweet as flow'rs from fertile ground.

But 'tis another to depend
On ev'ry breath caprice may lend;
And never feeling high enough,
Look down with thanks on fools who puff
Such posture augurs shame and ill,
'Tis a foul medium, and must kill.
So have I seen an empty ball
Go bounding up--and in its fall,
Catch kicks and buffets from a crew
Of hooting boys who still pursue.

Now to the heroes of my lay :
It chanced, one bright but windy day,
A working BEE, by toil oppress'd
Hard by a thistle stopp'd to rest;
And there in all its silken pride
A restless ThistLE-DOWN espied
On tiptoe, as the breeze came on,
To catch the current and be gone !
Stretched were its arms, like finest thread,
Yet, ere it vanish'd over head,
“ One moment,” cried the Bee, “attend;
And take the counsel of a friend.
In this design, whate'er you do,
Just think what you are trusting to.
The smile may soon become a frown !
The gale that lifts will cart you down!
Then mark me, vain one, thou'lt repine
The more because the fault was thine.

“The good ship vent'ring on the main,
Has means to bring her home again,
But without anchor, ballast, heln,
Must not the winds and waves o'erwhelm ?
The bird, when angry storms prevail,
Can poise his weight against the gale;
And e'en the kite, a childish thing,
Has got a tail, and lengthened string ;
But thou, endowed like none of these,
Wilt rise and perish with the breeze !"

And so it was ;-for borne away,
In attitudes that seemed to say,
How glorious ! Am I not as one
At least first-cousin to the Sun ?
Wild ThistLE-DOWN got out of sight
But the wind hurld him from his height.
Spoil'd, drench'd, and draggled, down he reold,
Where slimy pools defiled the field,
And there he stuck, and will remain
A lesson for the towering brain,
Till future seasons shall be found
To bring another instance round.


THERE is this advantage in the pursuit of science, that it tends to generate liberality of sentiment, and destroy those prejudices which divide nations far more effectually than any barrier of nature. Science is of no country, and its followers, wherever born, constitute a wide and diffusive community, and are linked together by ties of brotherhood and interest, which political hostility cannot sever.--T. H.

As surely as God is good, so surely there is no such thing as necessary evil. For by the religious mind, sickness, and pain, and death, are not to be accounted evils. Moral evils are of your own making; and undoubtedly, the greater part of them may be prevented. Deformities of mind, as of body, will sometimes occur. Some voluntary cast-aways there will always be, whom no fostering kindness and no parental care can preserve from self-destruction; but if any are lost for want of care and culture, there is a sin of omission in the society to which they belong:SOUTHEY.

« AnteriorContinuar »