Annals of Rural Bengal

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Smith, Elder and Company, 1871 - Bengal (India) - 475 pages


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Page 120 - May the water-shedding Spirits bear thee upwards, cooling thee with their swift motion through the air, and sprinkling thee with dew.' ' Bear him, carry him ; let him, with all his faculties complete, go to the world of the righteous. Crossing the dark valley which spreadeth boundless around him, let the unborn soul ascend to heaven. Wash the feet of him who is stained with sin ; let him go upwards with cleansed feet. Crossing the gloom, gazing with wonder in many directions, let the unborn soul...
Page 263 - ... an account of its possessors or rulers, the order of their succession, the revolutions in their families, and their connections, the peculiar customs and privileges which they or their people have established and enjoyed ; and, in short, every transaction which can serve to trace their origin and progress or has produced any material changes in their affairs of the Province.
Page 418 - The scene of misery that intervened, and still continues, shocks humanity too much to bear description. Certain it is, that in several parts the living have fed on the dead...
Page 28 - Still fresh in memory's eye the scene I view, The shrivelled limbs, sunk eyes, and lifeless hue ; Still hear the mother's shrieks and infant's moans, Cries of despair and agonizing moans.
Page 381 - Notwithstanding the loss of at least one-third of the inhabitants of the province, and the consequent decrease of the cultivation, the net collections of the year 1771 exceeded even those of 1768. ... It was naturally to be expected that the diminution of the revenue should have kept an equal pace with the other consequences of so great a calamity. That it did not was owing to its being violently kept up to its former standard.
Page 382 - The nazims exacted what they could from the zemindars and great farmers of the revenue, whom they left at liberty to plunder all below, reserving to themselves the prerogative of plundering them in their turn when they were supposed — to have enriched themselves with the spoils of the country.
Page 293 - The coinage," says Sir W. Hunter, in his most able Annals of Rural Bengal, ' the refuse of twenty different dynasties and petty potentates, had been clipped, drilled, filed, scooped out, sweated, counterfeited, and changed from its original value by every process of debasement devised by Hindu ingenuity during a space of four hundred years. The smallest coin could not change hands without an elaborate calculation as to the amount to be deducted from its nominal value. This calculation, it need hardly...
Page 26 - All through the stifling summer of 1770 the people went on dying. The husbandmen sold their cattle ; they sold their implements of agriculture ; they devoured their seed grain ; they sold their sons and daughters, till at length no buyer of children could be found ; they ate the leaves of the trees and the grass of the field ; and in June 1770 the Resident at the Durbar affirmed that the living were feeding on the dead.
Page 382 - It had also the additional Evil attending it, in common with every other Variation from the regular Practice, that it afforded an opportunity to the Farmers and Shicdars to levy other Contributions on the People under color of it, and even to encrease this to whatever magnitude they pleased, since they were in course the Judges of the Loss sustained, and of the Proportion which the Inhabitants were to pay to replace it.
Page 65 - So great was the damage done by these depredations, 199 that "the company offered a reward for each tiger's head, sufficient to maintain a peasant's family in comfort for three months ; an item of expenditure it deemed so necessary, that, when under extraordinary pressure it had to suspend all payments, the tiger-money and diet allowance for prisoners were the sole exceptions to the rule.

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