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we have been describing, is placed after it in the volume. The province of Sinde is bounded by Kutch Gundawa and Shikarpoor on the north, by the ocean to the south; an extensive desert on the east separates it from the provinces of Agimere, Marwar, &c. and on the west the Brahooick mountains terminate the plain, as by a gigantic wall; through the midst of it flows the celebrated Indus. The resemblance,' says Pottinger,) which this country bears to Egypt, is so great as to strike the observer with surprise ; a level plain, with a noble river fertilizing each bank to a certain distance, when the face of the country becomes on one side a sandy desert, and on the other a pile of barren mountains, that are quite as inhospitable both as to soil and climate.' Sinde, as well as Beloochistan, is, as we have observed, a nominal province of Kaubul, and rated at the fixed annual tribute of twelve lacks of rupees, no part of which, however, has of late years been paid. At the time of the mission, the government of the province was vested in three brothers, who had assumed the title of Ameers, or rulers, of Sinde; and since then, on the death of the eldest in 1812, his son took the lowest seat in the triumvirate, while the other two brothers each ascended a step. They have considerably extended their territory to the northward, and were attempting to carry their arms into Kutch Booje on the south-eastern frontier, but were prevented by the British government of India, which will account for the ill humour they showed to the mission of Mr.Smith fromBombay in 1809. Both Captain Christie and Mr. Pottinger accompanied this mission. On their arrival off Kurachee the governor made some demur in permitting the ships to enter the harbour until he should have seen the Ameers. Mr. Smith complained that in their correspondence some improper assumptions had taken place as to the relative titles and rank of the Governor General of India and the Ameer; on which the Sinde governor expressed his regret, and assured them it had arisen entirely from his ignorance of the Persian language ; but that he had not the least objection to put out the eyes of the writer or put him to death, whichever the envoy should like best. When landed they were refused entrance into the fort; a body of troops were marched down, and all their motions were closely watched. In short, they were kept several days as prisoners at large, and a guard every night placed over them. At length, however, after a direct communication from the envoy to the Ameers, they were allowed to set out for Hyderabad.
Kurachee is the principal Bunder, or sea port, of Sinde. The fortifications are mean, being built of mud mixed with straw, and a long creeping weed that grows in the neighbouring marshes; the houses within the walls, by actual enumeration in 1813, amount to 8250; the inhabitants to 13,000, mostly Hindoos engaged in commerce. The surrounding country is a perfect plain, which, in the beginning of June, was entirely parched, without a vestige of vegetation.
They reached Tatta in five marches. This place, thought to be the Pattala of Alexander, and once the capital of Sinde, is now in a state of desolation; and the whole country between it and the sea port of Kurachee, a mere desert; it was, however, intersected by a number of river beds, from fifty to five hundred yards in width, which, though then perfectly dry, were represented as being navigable in the rainy season : they were all branches of the Indus. Three miles short of Tatta is the hill called Mukeelee, covered with tombs, the only remaining evidence of the ancient opulence of that city. Each had its area enclosed within a high wall. The Mauso. leum was about 85 feet square, with a cupola 70 feet high, partly hid by two balconies or verandahs, the fronts of which were supported by pillars; both the building and enclosing wall were of yellow freestone, and inside, beneath the centre of the dome, was a mound of black stone, on which were inscribed the names of those who had been interred there; the most modern that could be deciphered was dated more than a century and a half before. Chapters of the Koran were exquisitely engraven on the stone door-frames.
From the summit of the hill, Tatta has the appearance of an immense city; but on approaching it the delusion ceases, and nothing is observed but dilapidated walls and mosques, and long streets of uninhabited and ruinous houses. The removal of the court to Hyderabad was the occasion of the depopulated state of Tatta, full two-thirds of which is actually uninhabited. It is still, however, a considerable place, being, by Mr. Pottinger's computation, six miles in circumference, exclusive of the ruins; which, however, would not seem to accord with a population of only twenty thousand souls. When Nadir Shah visited Tatta on his return from Delhi, it was said to contain 40,000 weavers of calico and loonjees, with artisans of every other description to the number of 20,000, exclusive of bankers, money-changers, shopkeepers, and sellers of grain, who were estimated at 60,000. What it once was, and what the natural resources of this part of Sinde were, may be collected from a curious anecdote told of the successful robber Nadir Shah. On arriving at this city, he ordered Meer Noor Mohummud, the governor of the province, into his presence; he came in the usual style of eastern humiliation, with his turban round his neck, a wisp of hay in his mouth, and his feet covered; while in the act of prostration, Nadir asked him if he had a well full of gold ; the Meer replied, “ Yes; two.' Nadir then asked him if he possessed the Lal, a celebrated ruby belonging to the Ameers of Sinde ; the reply was, 'Yes; two.' Nadir then threw up his handkerchief, and asked the Meer what he saw on looking at it; he replied, nothing but troops and arms— Then,” said Nadir,
produce your gold and your rubies.' The Meer called for a basket which was filled with grain and flour, and a skin of ghee or clarified butter, and placing one on his right hand, and the other on his left, he said to the Shah, I am a cultivator of the soil, and these are my gold and rubies, in which I shall not fail you :and he kept his word, having fed the whole army and followers of Nadir Shah, exceeding 500,000 people, for sixteen days.
More diplomatic difficulties on points of etiquette occurred on their arrival at Hyderabad, but after a week's negociation, it was arranged that on the introduction the envoy should sit on a chair, and that the three Ameers should stand up on his appearance, and remain in that position till he had advanced to his seat : the Ameers, however, seemed to have made up what they might have lost in dignity, by letting loose the court rabble, who rushed in and trod upon the scabbards of the swords and skirts of the coats of the envoy's suite. The three Ameers were covered with jewels; and the mattress they sat upon, and the pillows that supported them, were richly embroidered with gold and silver flowers, and sparkled with emeralds and rubies. The three brothers were all dressed alike, and their turbans were from two to two and a half feet in diameter: some of these turbans contain not less than 80 yards of
Hyderabad is situated on an island formed by two branches of the Indus. It is a fortress whose walls are of brick, from fifteen to thirty feet high, flanked by mud towers at intervals of three or four hundred paces; the place is defended by about seventy pieces of cannon, mostly small and bad. The pettah, or suburbs, lie to the northward of the fortress, consist of about 2500 houses, and a population of 10,000 souls ; about the same number reside in the fort. They are mostly artisans, employed chiefly in the manufacture of matchlocks, swords, spears, &c. which they execute remarkably well ; but the Ameers and great officers wear swords and daggers made of the finest steel, which they draw from Persia and Asia Minor by agents sent for that purpose.
Mr. Pottinger may be allowed to be a little out of humour with the Sindeans, who were certainly very much disposed to treat the East India Company's envoy rather cavalierly, and we ought on that account to make some little allowance for the dark colouring which he has given to their character:- Avaricious, full of deceit, cruel, ungrateful, and strangers to veracity.' He admits indeed, in extenuation of their vices, that the present generation has grown up under a government whose extortion, ignorance, and ty.
ranny, are possibly unequalled. We need not seek for other causes ; even that moral turpitude' which Mr. Pottinger pronounces to pervade, in a greater or less degree, the population and society of every nation in Asia,' is to be ascribed to the political situation and circumstances under which they are placed, and not to any radical defect or inherent principle in their nature, different from the rest of mankind. The physical qualities of the Sindeans are personal bravery, abstinence, capability of great exertion, unqualified submission, and obedience to their superiors. They are represented as a handsome race of men, taller than Asiatics in general, with good features, and well formed limbs. The women are celebrated for their beauty; and Mr. Pottinger says that among the numerous sets of dancing girls that exhibited before them, he does not recollect to have seen one who was not distinguished for loveliness of face, or symmetry of figure.?
The Ameers are as rapacious as they are ignorant, and oppress the people in every possible way, levying heavy taxes on every article of produce, both while on the land and in the market. The sum thus squeezed from the people is said to amount to sixty-one lac of rupees, (about 767,5001. sterling.) They are supposed to be able to bring into the field an army of about 36,000 irregular cavalry, armed with matchlocks, lances, and shields, and trained to act as horse or foot soldiers ; these men are raised from the contingents of petty chiefs, amounting to more than forty, who hold their lands on condition of military service, the common tenure throughout most countries of the Eastern world--but we must dismiss Lieutenant Pottinger's volume.-As containing a descriptive detail of a country very little known, we consider it as a valuable contribution to Asiatic geography; it brings us acquainted with a rude and barbarous people, whose manners have probably undergone very little change from the earliest ages. The style of the author, and his manner of treating his subject, are of an inferior cast to those of Mr. Elphinstone, and nothing is added to the science of natural history in any of its departments--but we must not expect too much from a subaltern in the Indian army, which he entered probably at a very early period of life. There is far more information contained in the volume than the circumstances under which it was collected would warrant us to expect.
ART. IV. Euripidis Alcestis.
Ad fidem Manuscriptorum ac veterum editionum emendavit et annotationibus instrucit Jacobus Henricus Monk, A. M. Collegii SS. Trinitatis Socius, et Græcarum Literarum apud Cantabrigienses Professor Regius. Accedit Georgii Buchanani versio metrica. Cantabrigie. 1816.
OF the three celebrated tragedians of antiquity Euripides was cer
tainly the poet of common life. He did not like the great father of the drama, transport his audience amidst a race of demigods, whose thoughts and language, as well as stature, were superhuman. He did not like his immediate predecessor and rival, elevate his characters into that consistentand sustained majesty which renders them more calculated to command our respect than to excite our pity; but he took his personages from the common mythological stockof his country, and arrayed them in the manners, the language, and the circumstances of his own time. He took human life as he found it, and gave a faithful picture of it with all its lights and shades.' In its principal features he knew that it had been much the same in the time of Admetus or Jason as in his own. Its accidentals were indeed altered; its conveniences and embellishments were changed; but the passions and general habits of mankind remained; tyrants, and lovers, and madmen acted not very differently then from what they had done a thousand years before ; what was a natural incident in his time would have been likely to happen under similar circumstances in the heroic age; and therefore he gave himself no pains to arrange such a combination of events, as should be more consistent with the dignity of his fabulous heroes than with the ordinary course of nature; nor did he scruple upon occasion to make his characters discourse like so many honest Athenians of the 80th Olympiad, rather than in the elevated tone which the sons and grandsons of Jupiter might be supposed to have used.* Euripides knew that a man, who was exiled from his country and deprived of the means of subsistence, must have recourse tothe bountyof others; a situation not very heroical indeed, but quite consistent with the ordinary course of things ; and therefore he did not hesitate to introduce Telephus upon the stage, with a wallet, begging his bread from door to door; for which violation of dramatic propriety and decorum he is censured by Aristophanes. Nurses are often foolish and talkative old women; accordingly the nurse of Phædra proses
* Κάλλως εικός τους ημιθ.ους τούς ρήμασι μείζοσι χήσαι.
As far as the mere phraseology is concerned, Aristotle considers that Euripides is to be commended for adopting in some instances the common language of the people. Κλίπτεται δ' εύ, εάν τις έκ τής ευθυιας διαλέκτου αλογον συντιθη» όπου Ευριπιδες ποιοί, και υπέδειξε opātuso Rhetor, iji. 1.