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resident were repeated without effect; and the governor-general was subsequently convinced, that nothing but his determination to proceed to Lucnow with a respectable force would have prevented the subversion of the English influence in Oude, or the alternative of hostilities to preserve it.

The approach of Vizier Ali and the governor-general, from Lucnow

and Juanpore respectively, bore all the aspect of doubtful friendship. The nawaub had at one time determined to advance with a large force and a numerous train of artillery; but this measure was relinquished at the advice of the mother of the late sovereign, the Begum, or queendowager, and he in consequence announced that he should be accompanied by a very small escort. The language of his letters to Sir John Shore was civil and submissive, and such it had been to the resident, at the same time that he was secretly undermining his position. Many respectable persons were deterred from waiting on the governor-general by the fear of offending the nawaub.

Some days after his arrival at Lucnow, Sir John Shore was cautioned, through various

channels, not to put his person in the power of Vizier Ali, under the impression that assassination was intended. Information was subsequently communicated that troops to a large amount had been secretly introduced into the town, and that orders had been sent to different battalions to march in. Two actually approached from the neighbourhood; the nawaub admitted the fact, but denied that they came by his orders, and remanded one of them. These circumstances determined the governorgeneral to quit his residence in the city of Lucnow, and to occupy a garden-house of the nawaub at the distance of about five miles from his residence.

This removal had the apparent effect of alarming the nawaub, who on the following day quitted Lucnow, and encamped at a small distance from the place occupied by the governor-general. He was here attacked by a disorder which prevented his meeting Sir John Shore for a considerable interval, during which the latter had an opportunity of prosecuting inquiries, the result of which led him to say that he had never been involved in a scene of greater perplexity and profligacy.'

Almas Ali Khan was a renter of Oude-that is, farmer of the revenue of a large portion of the nawaub's country He was one of that class of persons common in oriental seraglios, and had formerly been attached to Soojah ul Dowlah’s zenanah. Hitherto the great friend and supporter of Vizier Ali, and second only to himself in the kingdom of Oude, he had been sedulously watching the progress of things, and, when the house showed symptoms of falling, he prepared to quit it, with the sagacity of that small but astute animal which has given a name to this species of desertion. He called upon the minister, and surprised him with strong complaints of the conduct of the nawaub, whom he loaded with opprobrious invectives. He spoke of him as being at once spurious and profligate, and as calculated to ruin the country by his vices and profusion. He expressed his alarm lest a knowledge of his conduct should reach the governor-general and force him into violent measures. He mentioned the entire approbation of the Begum as to his conduct, and her earnest wish, as well as his own, that Vizier Ali should be deposed, and some one of the sons of Soojah

ul Dowlah placed on the musnud. The same was successively repeated by Almas to the governor-general, both alone and in company with the commander-in-chief. He declared that the power of the Begum would be sufficient, in the presence of the English troops, to depose Vizier Ali, and promised a considerable sum in compensation of the acquiescence and aid of the British authorities.

The opinion of Almas as to the defective title of Vizier Ali was consistent with his declarations immediately subsequent to his elevation; and the joint admission of both himself and the Begum, as to his spurious origin, left them without the shadow of a pretext for objecting to the claim of Saadut Ali on the ground of right.

It was at this period that the governorgeneral deemed it necessary to prepare for the accomplishment of the event, by writing to the resident at Benares, Mr. Cherry, who, as chief judge of the Court of Appeal, was the channel of communication with the foreigners of rank at that city. As Benares was destined to be the scene of the final catastrophe, it

becomes necessary to give some account of that ancient Hindoo city.

The district in which it is situated was ceded by the subsidiary treaty of 1775 to the British power by the Nawaub of Oude, Asoph ul Dowlah, in compensation (as was alleged at the time) of the aid which he had received in reducing to subjection one of his tributary chiefs.* The city is built on the north or left bank of the Ganges, as that great river flows eastward, and presents a fine appearance when viewed from the water. The eye rests on a variety of noble buildings, some of them highly ornamented, and with terraces on their summits; while the view is improved by the numerous flights of stone steps which lead from the banks of the river to Hindoo temples, or serve the crowds of devotees in the performance of their frequent ablutions.

Mr. Macaulay has given the following graphic description of 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

* The compact in question was in reality a general treaty for furnishing a force to protect him agaiust all enemies.

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