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LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
PAGE RAJA or AHMETY’s TEMPLE . . . . . . . . . Frontispiece TEMPLE AT MAEIKAREIKA GHAT . . . . . . . . . . 7O RAJA or NAGPoRE’s Gnlr . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 THE MINARETS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 THE NEPALESE TEMPLE . . . . . . . . . . . . . 137 RAM GHAT. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .145 GREAT Bnnnnrs'r TOWER AT SAnNA'rH . . . . . . . . 236 Cmvnve ON THE Bunnnrsr TOWER, No. I. . . . . . . . 240
,, ,, ,, No. II. . . . . . . 241
ANCIENT BUDDHIST TEMPLE AT BAKABIYA Kunp . . . . . 283
ALIKE as to limits and as to influence, the Indian kingdoms of former times were, with few exceptions, inconsiderable ; such of them as lay conterminous were often at open feud; and their cities, or fortified towns, constituted, in fact, their only stable boundaries. It was, probably, with the dominion of the Kasis as it was with other seats of Hindu power. Deriving its origin from some city, as Pratishthana,l or Varanasi,2 it must have acquired extent and consideration by very gradual development.
At least since a hundred and twenty years before our era, Varanasi, as denoting a city, has been a name
1 Vida mfra, p. xxv., note 1.
‘3 Also called Varanasi and Varanasi, according to the Haima-koéa and the Sabdaratndvali, respectively. The latter of these vocabularies is of small authority.
A rational system of Romanized spelling would give us, instead of Benares, Banaras. The form “TIE was the work, perhaps, of the Muhammadans. It should appear that the metathesis of r and gr, in the original word, must be later than the times of F5 Hian and Hiouen Thsang. Vida infra, p. xxviii., notes 1 and 2.
In the ordinary belief of the vulgar of Benares, the name of their city is connected with Raja Banar,—-a mythical magnate, of whom mention is associated with that of the reformer Kabir, of the beginning of the fifteenth century. Asiatic Researches, Vol. XVL, p. 57“According to some of the Muhammadan accounts,” says Mr. James
familiar to Brahmanical literature.1 The word is crudely referred, by modern inventiveness, to a combination of Varana and Asi ; 2 and all the other explanations that We have of its source are equally questionable.
Prinsep, but without naming his voucher for the statement, Benares “ was governed by a Raja Banar, at the time of one of Mahmud’s invasions, or in A.D. 1017, when one of his generals penetrated to the province, and defeated the Raja.”—-Benares Illustrated, p. 9. General Cunningham states that Raja Banar is traditionally believed to have rebuilt Benares about eight hundred years ago. Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, for 1863, Supplementary Number, p. xcvi.
1 Varanasi is specified more than once in Patanjali’s Mahdbhashya. On the age of that work, see my edition of Professor Wilson’s translation of the Vishnu-Parana, Vol. II., p. 189, ad calcem.
’ So allege the Pandits of the present day; repeating, no doubt, a long-current conceit of their predecessors: see the Asiatic Researches, Vol. III., pp. 409, 410. This notion, though it has found expression in the Araish-l-malgfil and other recent Muhammadan books, is, I believe, only implied in the Puranas. It is said, for instance, in the third chapter of the Vdmana-purdpmthat Varanasi lies between the Varana and the Asi: