A Hand-book of Benares

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Travancore Government Press, 1901 - 85 pages

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Page 13 - The painted streets alive with hum of noon, The traders cross-legged 'mid their spice and grain, The buyers with their money in the cloth, The war of words to cheapen this or that, The shout to clear the road, the huge stone wheels, The strong slow oxen and their rustling loads, The singing bearers with the palanquins, The broad-necked hamals sweating in the sun, The housewives bearing water from the well With balanced chatties, and athwart their hips The black-eyed babes; the fly-swarmed sweetmeat...
Page 13 - Of asp and nag, or charm the hooded death To angry dance with drone of beaded gourd; There a long line of drums and horns, which went, With steeds gay painted and silk canopies, To bring the young bride home; and here a wife Stealing with cakes and garlands to the god To pray her husband's safe return from trade, Or beg a boy next birth...
Page 38 - ... called the Burning Ghat, leading down from the streets above to the bed of the river Ganges, the Dom supplies five logs of wood, which he lays in order upon the ground, the rest of the wood being given by the family of the deceased. When the pile is ready for burning, a handful of lighted straw is brought by the Dom, and is talien from him and applied by one of the chief members of the family to the wood.
Page 38 - Dom, and is taken from him and applied by one of the chief members of the family to the wood. The Dom is the only person who can furnish the light for the purpose ; and if from any circumstance the services of one cannot be obtained, great delay and inconvenience are apt to arise. The Dom exacts his fee for three things, namely first for the five logs, secondly, for the bunch of straw, and, thirdly, for the light.
Page 38 - When the pile is ready for burning, a handful of lighted fire is brought by the Dom, and applied by one of the chief members of the family to the wood. The Dom is the only person who can furnish the light for this purpose ; and if, from any circumstance, the services of one cannot be obtained, great delay and inconvenience are apt to occur. The Dom exacts his fee for three things, namely, first, for the five logs, secondly, for the bunch of straw, and thirdly, for the light.
Page 9 - ... 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 56 - Godward] for the human victim ; with which the 'Dark goddess of the azure flood, Whose robes are wet with infant tears, Skull-chaplet wearer, whom the blood Of man delights three thousand years...
Page 65 - I., p. 15. country. The lower part of the tower, to a height of 43 feet, is built entirely of stone from one of the Chunar quarries, and with the exception of the upper five courses, the whole of this part of the building is a solid mass of stone, and each stone, even in the very heart of the mass, is secured to its neighbours by iron cramps. The upper part of the tower...
Page 13 - The black-eyed babes ; the fly-swarmed sweetmeat shop, The weaver at his loom, the cotton bow Twanging, the mill-stones grinding meal, the dogs Prowling for orts. . . , . Here a throng Gathered to watch some chattering snake-tamer Wind round his wrist the living jewellery Of asp and nag, or charm the hooded death To angry dance to drone of beaded gourd...

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