Vizier Ali Khan; Or, The Massacre of Benares: a Chapter in British Indian History ...

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Spottiswoode & Company, 1871 - 98 pages

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Page 10 - Benares, a city which in wealth, population, dignity and sanctity, was among the foremost of Asia. It was commonly believed that half a million of human beings was crowded into that labyrinth of lofty alleys, rich with shrines, and minarets, and balconies, and carved oriels, to which the sacred apes clung by hundreds. The traveller could scarcely make his way through the press of holy mendicants, and not less holy bulls.
Page 12 - ... metropolis. Commerce had as many pilgrims as religion. All along the shores of the venerable stream lay great fleets of vessels laden with rich merchandise. From the looms of Benares went forth the most delicate silks that adorned the balls of St. James's and of the Petit Trianon; and in the bazaars the muslins of Bengal and the sabres of Oude were mingled with the jewels of Golconda and the shawls of Cashmere.
Page 11 - ... and minarets and balconies and carved oriels, to which the sacred apes clung by hundreds. The traveller could scarcely make his way through the press of holy mendicants and not less holy bulls. The broad and stately flights of steps which descended from these swarming haunts to the bathing-places along the Ganges were worn every day by the footsteps of an innumerable multitude of worshippers. The schools and temples drew crowds of pious Hindoos from every province where the Brahmiuical faith...
Page 33 - ... which he had upstairs, and of the narrow staircase leading to the roof, which he considered defensible with such a weapon. The pike was one of those used by running footmen in India. It was of iron, plated with silver, in rings, to give a firmer grasp, rather more than six feet in length, and had a long triangular blade of more than twenty inches, with sharp edges. Finding, when on the terrace, that the lowness of the parapet wall exposed them all to view, and that they were fired at by the insurgents...
Page 84 - English, on condition that his life should be spared, and that he should not be bound by fetters.
Page 33 - Davis was directed, with her two female servants and the children, to sit down near the centre of the terrace, while Mr Davis took his station on one knee at the trap-door of the stair, waiting for the expected attack. The perpendicular height of the stair was considerable, winding round a central stem. It was of a peculiar construction, supported by four wooden posts, open on all sides, and so narrow as to allow only a single armed man to ascend at a time. It opened at once to the terrace, exactly...
Page 41 - Graham, a, young civilian, on their way to the attack on the judge and magistrate's house, and cut him. to pieces ; while Mr Hill, a European, who had a shop in the city, was also put to death. Some of the English made the best of their way to the camp, and others, especially those with families, concealed themselves as they could, and must probably have been discovered, and massacred, if the attention of the insurgents had not been occupied by Mr. Davis's defence. One large party retired into a...
Page 95 - Imperial family) and the contempt into which it has fallen of late years, the powerful have been weakened, and the weak become powerful; worthless unbelievers and ambitious villains have started up from every corner, boldly conquered all these countries, and established themselves here: as the poet observes, 'When the lions leave the plain the jackals become bold'.
Page 93 - I examined the staircase that leads to the top of the house, and which he defended with a spear for upwards of an hour and a half, till the troops came to his relief. It is of...
Page 87 - ... afforded more prospect of advancement, he left the army, and obtained the appointment of collector of Burdwan ; and while in this situation he married Henrietta, daughter of Mr. Boileau, of Dublin, whose ancestor — of the ancient family of the Barons de Castelnau, in Languedoc— had left his native country at the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and settled in Ireland. He had not been long at Burdwan before he was removed to Benares, to act in the position of judge and chief magistrate over...

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