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tombs he reverences. How neat and carefully swept the pavement! When night throws over them her sable mantle, numerous lights still display the silk which covers, and the rich carving which canopies them; the bodies of the departed are here carefully cherished, for their Koran is but a perversion of our Scriptures, and although it does not teach them of Christ's Incarnation, it teaches them its result of which idolaters know nothing) and that is, the sanctification of matter as well as spirit. Their care moreover for the departed, the beauty and cheerfulness of the place point out their belief in a resurrection. The entrances. and floors of the mausoleums are all of white marble, and the rest of highly polished chunam; they are old but kept in excellent repair. The domed architecture is of the style which at once from its similitude calls to mind the turbaned brow, and leads the memory back to the ages of Moorish zeal and conquest. In the same quadrangle is an extensive mosque, suggest. ing that men should pass from thoughts of mortality to prayer.. The builders too added no epitaphs, and it is pleasant to find the honour of the treasured dead at least not disgraced by falsehood.

The other inhabitants of Surat, peculiar to this side of India, are the Parsis, who are too well known to require description. For the last hundred years they have been divided into two sects,—the Rusmi, which embraces the majority, and the Kudimi. Strange to say, the origin of their dispute is the same as one which for long caused a difference between the Eastern and Western Churches of Christendom-a question about the computation of time; the one beginning the year a month earlier than the other! It is highly amusing to find writer on visiting Guzerat comparing them, on account of their frugality and business habits, to Quakers. The drab-coloured gentry would feel sadly scandalized if they were to know that they have been likened to the wealthy race who drive the gayest equipages, and are the most particular in their dress, of any people in Bombay,

There are about twenty Armenians with their Priest. We know not how to account for the large proportion of women amongst them, but such there is, and when a report of the population of Surat was sent to England in 1824, the case was precisely the same, although in all other instances the numbers of males and females were about equal.* The occupation of these once active people is almost gone. No greater testimony could have been given to their industry, honesty and ability than the circumstance, that they were employed by our factories to carry on their trade in the interior, the Company admitting that they could


* The report is given in Martin's British Colopies.

conduct it better than their own agents.

In their altered position they still retain the respectability and love of order for which they are generally so distinguished.

Not so the Portuguese. There is a sad falling of. They had formerly two Churches, one only of which is now used, but the other still exists. The oldest was built in 1624, and it is very remarkable that it was endowed with a monthly income of a hundred and twenty-six rupees paid by the Nawab, according to a sunnud of the Emperor.* There is now no pecuniary payment for its support, but there is still connected with it certain landed property

Efforts have been long made by Protestant Missionaries for the conversion of the natives, and for thirty years a mission has been established. There is a good mission house and a neat chapel. English and vernacular schools have been opened, but Parsi, Mohammedan and Hindu are as the deaf adder which refuseth to hear the voice of the charmer. The London Mission have prudently resigned the field to Irish Presbyterians, and have transplanted their missionaries to a more favourable soil. There is also a school established by Government at considerable expense, which is well conducted and numerously attended. As all religious instruction is excluded from its routine, it draws, as might be expected, heathen boys from the Church and Mission institutions, where some knowledge of the Gospel is imparted.

We cannot conclude without again drawing the reader's attention to the number, presented by the history of Surat, of the varieties and distinctions which exist amongst the human race. Here, we find the willing slaves of Mussulman despots, the republicans of Holland, the subjects of France and England's mixed monarchies all thrown together; here, too, was every shade of colour which distinguishes the human countenance, and here were multiplied forms of religion and superstition. Christians, who professed allegiance to the Pope of Rome, the Patriarch of Constantinople and the Catholicus of Armenia ; Christians who disowned all allegiance and were called Independents ; followers of the Anglican Communion, the Synod of Dort, the Westminster confession; Súni, Shía, and Boser disciples of the Prophet; heathenism in all its degrees, from the worship of "the eye of day," to the adoration of a monkey-god, or a daub of red paint-all were here. Where else shall we find such variety ? A history of Surat would be a most important chapter in a universal history of mankind.

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ART. IV.-1. The Government Gazette and Acts of the Le

gislative Council of India. 2. The Acts of the Legislative Council of India with a Glossary;

an Analytical Abstract prefixed to each Act, and Copious Index, by William Theobald, Esq. Barrister at Law and Advocate of the Supreme Court. Calcutta, 1844.

We resume the Legislative Acts of the Council of India, for the purpose of continuing our review of them from the year 1840, at which period we stopped in our last notice of them. From judicious readers we anticipate no reproach, on account of the dulness of the task we have undertaken: to them, it will be justified, as it is to ourselves, by the consideration, that, tolerably performed, it cannot but be an useful one; as towards the public at large it may be compared to that of the traveller who is about to explore distant and little known regions : he may neither extend the bounds nor enrich the field of knowledge or science; but the chance of making discovery is worth the enterprize : it secures to him the tolerant and kindly feeling of the stay-at-homes; and on his return, the discerning listen with patience to the record of his observations and travels. It is fortunate for us after this comparison, that the very first Act we have to notice, (Act 1 of 1841) is grotesque and novel by side of its companions; or perhaps what strikes us as novel, is really an antiquated fashion. It has a simply affirmative and didactic preamble; which is numbered as its first clause or section : and the second is like unto it, in that it contains no command or law, but merely a statement of a definition. How it got into the Act book in this form we are at a loss to imagine. It relates to Puttidari estates, so far as the land revenue is concerned in them; and as our readers are probably prepared to hear, its title and nomenclature are obscure, and its provisions difficult of comprehension. The fact of passing such an Act, is, however, sufficient proof to our mind of the propriety of accomplishing its objects, if at all, by legislation; we therefore feel called upon to notice, as constitutionally or politically remarkable, two of its provisions. The Act places certain powers of " duress" in the hands of the Collectors; and then ties up their hands by a provision, that the said powers “shall be employed by the Collectors under such limitation and control as Government, or other superior revenue authorities shall see fit to prescribe or enforce.” And the Act ends by empowering the Governor-General in Council to extend it, to any district " to which with reference to the



nature of the tenures prevalent therein its extension may be expedient, and the order of government shall be sufficient authority for such extension.Clauses such as these, we regard virtually as renunciations of the legislative function; or a transference of them to the executive department. We do not affirm that the executive is not as competent for the purpose as the legislative branch of Government; but we point them out as characteristic of our legislative system. The constitutional idea or theory of the charter has been in no respect carried out to its just consequences.

The second Act of 1841 is for Bombay, and is an Act for regulating. Turning over a few leaves more, we come to another Act (Act 4) for Bombay, for regulating ; and still a little further on, another Act for Bombay, for better regulating. This repetition, within two or three pages of one another, of the same title, will suggest to our readers all that we should wish to say in an expanded criticism ; in a multitude of regulations there may be many good ones; but the regulating spirit is not apt at selection. It rarely applies itself to proper objects; always meddles with too many particulars; and according to all experience, is an evil, and characteristic mostly of towns rather than states, and is the besetting sin of petty Governments. As it respects Bombay, the Legislative Council is the mere echo or registrar of the Local Government; for we will not ascribe to the GovernorGeneral in Council either the praise or the blame of caring for or understanding, these petty regulations.

Several Acts of this year illustrate the utility of a general Legislative Council for all the Presidencies. We refer to some new institutions and some new laws, which might perhaps have been established without a change of system, but certainly they would have been confined to Bengal, the special care of the Governor General and Council under the old arrangements. Act V. of 1841 is “an Act for the greater uniformity of process upon trials for state offences, and the amendment of such process in certain cases ;" and it is universal, for all the Presidencies. We have much pleasure in bringing forward this Act, as indicative of the increased confidence of government in its ordinary powers for the suppression of extraordinary offences. State offences, however, we may observe, are not, and cannot be, of the same importance in India as in many other countries. They neither indicate, as mostly in England, social disorganization and discontent extensively diffused among the working classes ; nor severe military pressure, as in Russia, Poland, and other such countries. Within what are called the regulation provinces, treason, rebellion and the like, are less

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formidable in their effects than thuggee and dacoity. The provisions of the Act before us are very simple. First, it gives to the ordinary Criminal Courts competence "to try charges of treason, rebellion or other crimes against the state; reserving, however, to the Presidency Governments, authority to issue a special commission to one or more judges for the trial of these offences. But the special commissions are to proceed in the same manner as the ordinary tribunals; and are to have all the powers of the latter ; except that their sentence, whether of acquittal or punishment, shall in every instance be reported with their proceedings to the Highest Court of the E. I. Co. for Criminal matters, in the Presidency, previous to carrying the same into execution. And these “highest courts, on the receipt of any trials referred to them, are to proceed thereupon according to the rules in force with respect to other trials referred to them; except--and we beg particular attention to the exception--that they are in every instance to report their sentence to the executive Government of the Presidency for the time being; and are to wait for the period of three calendar months before they direct their sentence to be carried into execution. A general restriction, such as this, delaying the execution of the sentence of the law, and casting doubt and uncertainty upon the proceedings in all cases, cannot be defensible. The general rule ought to be, to carry the sentence of the law immediately into execution, leaving the government to interfere on its own responsibility, when that course might appear desirable. This is another instance, of powers of interference reserved for the executive authorities, which are entirely at variance with all regular and civilized distinctions as to the Province of judicial tribunals.

The next Act (No. 6) is of the same class of general Acts; it is, “ An Act for a more uniform and an improved process for taking the examination of absent witnesses. First, it repeals all existing regulations and parts of regulations on this subject, in all the presidencies; and then supplies the place of the repealed, with, substantially, the same rules as prevail on this subject in the English system. In this Act, the anomalous position, so often the subject of animadversion, held by the Supreme Court, is again forced upon our attention. Commissions may be issued by any court to any other court except in the Presidency towns where they may only be issued to Courts of Requests ;-thus studiously are the Supreme Courts left in their original state of isolation.

The Act of parliament known in England by the name of the Interpleader Act, was this year adopted by the Legislative

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