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purchase a permission to return, by immediately adopting the faith of the conquerors. The offer was accepted, and several hundred Moors received the sign of the cross. But this only served to plunge them in deeper misery. No sooner had they adopted the name of Christians, than they were subjected to all the laws and enactments of the strictest ecclesiastical polity. They committed numerous offences against the rule to which they were thus exposed ; some from obstinacy, others from ignorance. But they were now bound to the church, and their offences, regarded as treason, were punished as such.
• The Inquisition spread wide the doors of its subterranean dungeons to receive them, and they now every where occupied the place of the unfortunate Jews. Dreadful was the rage with which the bands that had escaped to the mountains beheld this beartless persecution of their brethren. Secure amid the inaccessible rocks, in which they found shelter from the cruelty of the conqueror, they were now urged irresistibly forward to try their strength with so execrable an enemy. In vain, however, did these brave men shed their blood. Successive princes watched and laboured for their destruction.
Their doom was written in the gloomiest vaults of the Inquisition, and in the sanctuary of royalty; and a doom thus pre-determined was not to be rescinded on any appeal. Hundreds after hundreds perished, either openly by the sword, or at the bidding of the inquisition. They had fought for a time, with the heroism of their fathers, but no impression was to be made on the serried ranks of the Castilian cohorts. Those who survived, retreated to their mountains, their souls still breathing vengeance, and their hands eagerly clenching their scymitars which yet remained,--the only sign of their early greatness and valour.
· Years gave them strength, and renewed the spirit which had prompted them to such mighty deeds in their brighter and palmier days. Once more they descended the mountains, and the sound of their tread was like the rushing of a torrent newly replenished by the waters of the hills. But neither Charles the Fifth, nor his son Philip; was of a character to leave them unresisted. The provinces through which the Moors had to carry their operations were summoned to arms; and, in a brief period, even the remnant of the Moorish race was no longer to be seen.
• Thus closed, in the two-fold darkness of a religious and political doom, the eventful career of this high-spirited and remarkable people. Distinguished above all of Eastern or even European descent, by their deep religious devotion, their brilliant valour, their unrivalled ingenuity, and their renown in arts and learning--the influence they exercised on the mind of Europe, roused her from the torpor and barbarism of ages, to an energy, a spirit and glory of enterprise, which we attribute too little to its primary source. But the poet still bewails their fall, because in the days of their prosperity they were great and heroic; the philosopher contemplates it as the result of necessary causes ; the Christian, better and more truly, as one of the acts in the mighty scheme of a divine, mysterious Providence.' pp. 271--273..
The Oriental Annual is occupied, this year, with descriptions of scenes in Bengal. Last year, our readers may recollect, the
scene was laid in Madras; and the next volume is to be devoted to Bombay, and of course Elephanta. In the present, we start from Hurdwar, ascend the hill country to Serinagur, and are favoured with a sight of the Yak of Tibet and the Ghoorkar of Nepaul; and thence descend to Delhi, Agra, Lucknow, Benares, Calcutta. Mr. Caunter has produced a very light and agreeable volume, rich in varied interest. We are not in a temper for criticism, or we might remark upon the happy facility with which he disposes of the much controverted question relative to the comparative antiquity, of Brahminism and Buddhism, affirming that the latter creed can be deduced from Brahminism by logical
sequence!' We might also point out some slight blunders which he has committed ; but few of his readers will care either about Sakia Muni or any of the four Buddhas. We find it difficult to detach an extract ; but the following may serve as specimens of the miscellaneous contents.
Before we quitted this temple, a circumstance occurred which strikingly displayed the selfish and equivocal casuistry of the mercenary Hindoo. 'I happened to take a fancy to one of the little brazen gods, which was placed upon a sort of altar in the most sacred part of the edifice. It was a very clumsy cast in brass; but one which I had never before seen, and was therefore anxious to possess. Knowing that these deities had been occasionally sold by the Brahmins from their very altars, I proposed to purchase this, and made for it what I imagined a very liberal offer. The obsequious priest, bowing his head, placed his hand upon his breast with the most ludicrous humility, and said that he could not sell, since that would be a desecration of the holy sanctuary of which he was an unworthy minister, and that he could not give, because he was too poor to replace the treasure of which the temple would be thus deprived; but, he continued, “suppose Sahib take, what can a poor Brahmin do?" Upon this hint I acted; and, without the slightest opposition from the good-tempered priest, took possession of the image. The holy man did not even offer a rebuke; but, on the contrary, extended his open palm towards ine; into which I dropped a pagoda that I had previously held between my finger and thumb; and upon which he closed his hand with a courteous smile, bowing with the profoundest reverence the moment his flesh felt the delectable pressure of the gold.' pp. 97, 98.
It is generally supposed that the Cobra di Capello, exhibited by the Indian jugglers, is rendered harmless by having its fangs extracted, before they venture to try their skill in charming them. Mr. Caunter says this is altogether a mistake.
• The dexterity of the jugglers in managing these dangerous reptiles is truly extraordinary. They easily excite them to the most desperate rage, and by a certain circular motion of the arms appease them as readily; then, without the least hesitation, they will take them in their hands, coil them round their necks, and put their fingers to their mouths, even while their jaws are furnished with the deadliest venom, and the slighest puncture from their fangs would produce not only certain but almost instant death.
• The power which the people exercise over this species of the venomous snake, remains no longer a mystery when its habits are known. It is a remarkable peculiarity in the Cobra di Capello, and, I believe, in most poisonous reptiles of this class, that they have an extreme reluctance to put into operation the deadly powers with which they are endowed. The Cobra scarcely ever bites unless excited by actual injury or extreme provocation; and even then, before it darts upon
its aggressor, it always gives him timely notice of his danger not to be mistaken. It dilates the crest upon its neck, which is a large flexible membrane having on the upper surface two black circular spots, like a pair of spectacles, waves its head to and fro with a gentle undulatory motion, the eye sparkling with intense lustre, and commences a hiss so loud as to be heard at a considerable distance ; so that the juggler always has warning when it is perilous to approach his captive. The snake never bites while the hood is closed; and so long as this is not erected, it may be approached and handled with impunity. Even when the hood is spread, while the creature continues silent there is no danger. Its fearful hiss is at once the signal of aggression and of peril.
Though the Cobra is so deadly when under excitement, it is nevertheless astonishing to see how readily it is appeased even in the highest state of exasperation, and this merely by the droning music with which its exhibitors seem to charm it. It
to be fascinated by the discordant sounds that issue from their
and tomtoms. "I confess, for time after
arrival in India, I laboured under the general delusion that the fangs of these reptiles were always drawn out by the persons who carried them about, and had often fearlessly ventured within their spring with a feeling of entire security: I, however, took especial care never to approach a captive snake, after I discovered that it still retained its powers of destruction, The jugglers who gain a precarious subsistence by showing these creatures, will bring them in from the jungles by the neck, and an instance of their being bitten is scarcely heard of. They themselves appear not to have the slightest apprehension of danger ; for it is not often that the snake, though so rudely seized, manifests any symptoms of irritation.'
The 'Drawing Room Scrap Book’ is certainly one of the most elegant and attractive of the Annuals. It contains something of every thing—picturesque, architectural, continental, oriental, portraits, grave and gay-a most singular but amusing medley of prints and subjects, to which the versatile and facile pen of L. E. L. supplies a running illustration. The following interesting communication, obtained, probably, through the same medium, appears both in the Scrap Book and in Mr. Caunter's volume.
• Kasiprasad Ghosh is of high Braminical extraction, and of independent fortune. . .
At the age of fourteen he was sent to the AngloIndian College, where he made rapid progress. He soon shewed a marked predilection for our literature. Indeed, he himself says, “I
· have composed many songs in Bengalee, but the greater portion of my writing is in English, and, indeed, have always found it easiest to express my sentiments in that language." An essay that he wrote at a very early period, on Mr. Mills's History of India, attracted much attention; and since then, he has published a volume of poems called “ The Shair," the Indian word for Minstrel. English readers must bear in mind the prejudices which a Bramin had to surmount in order to appreciate the acquirements of this highly gifted stranger. At Calcutta, Kasiprasad Ghosh is universally beloved and admired : and we cannot but think that a vast field lies before him. The following little
poem will give an idea of his fervid imagination and Oriental style.
• THE BOATMAN'S SONG TO GANGA.
So Ganga, we bid thee a cheerful adieu !' A Portrait of Dr. Olinthus Gregory serves as an occasion for the introduction of some touching lines alluding to the melancholy death of Mr. Boswell Gregory, the Doctor's eldest son, who was recently drowned in the Thames, through the upsetting of the boat which was conveying him ashore.
Many circumstances conspired to render this event peculiarly afflictive and distressing. Mr. Gregory was in the flower of life, a young man of most amiable manners and high promise, and had recently obtained an appoinment in the East India House,
which he had just held long enough to afford proof of his steadiness and ability. He had been absent on an excursion through Switzerland, and had not seen his mother since his return. The meeting was fondly anticipated on both sides :-it was to be postponed till mother and son meet in the better home of the spirits of the just. Happy the parents who sorrow not as those who have not this hope. The indications of piety afforded by this estimable young man were such, we have been informed, as to supply a mournful source of satisfaction. Here are the stanzas.
• Is there a spot where Pity's foot,
Although unsandalled, fears to tread,
Where tears, and only tears are shed ?
Where Hope was yet a recent guest,
Or come, and only speak of rest.
And bade me only fancy there
A Parent's long and last despair ;
Which closed above the youthful head,
Which waits the time-appointed dead.
Begirt with all familiar thought,
So much from present promise wrought ;
Anxious from love's excess alone,
More precious to us than our own :
From out a still and darkened room,
Written so newly on the tomb.
; So much of love he left behind,
So much of life had died with him.
• Ah, pity for the long beloved,
Ah, pity for the early dead ;
Ere life a light or leaf had shed.