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"The Sultan is described as beheading the Raja with his own hand, at the request of the latter to save him from the personal degradation of confinement. The Hindu memoirs assert that Ali Adil Shah was forced into war by the other Mohammedan princes, but Ferishta makes him the author of the confederacy."—Wilson's Int. vol. i. p. cli.
"In the Ramaraja Chavitra the Hindu Prince terms the Sultan his son, and reminds him how often in infancy he had sat upon his knees. In complying with his request and striking off his head, Ali Adil Shah is represented as performing no more than filial duty."—Wilson, p. clii.
The well-known illustrations of Zadig's sagacity, so popularly referred to in Arabian proverbs—" If asked, hast thou seen the camel pass? say no :"—has an Indian and more probable origin.
"In the reign of Alakendra Raja, king of Ataka Puri, it happened that four persons of respectability were travelling on the high road, when they met with a merchant who had lost one of his camels. Entering into conversation with him, one of the travellers inquired if the camel was not lame in one of its legs; another asked if it was not blind of the right eye; the third asked if the tail was not unusually short; and the fourth demanded if it was not subject to the cholic. They were answered in the affirmative by the merchant, who was satisfied they must have seen the animal, and eagerly demanded where they had met it. They replied they had seen traces of the camel, but not the camel itself: which, being inconsistent with the minute acquaintance they seemed to possess, the merchant accused them of being thieves and having stolen his beast, and immediately applied to the Raja for redress. The Raja on hearing the merchant's story was equally impressed with the belief that the travellers must know what had become of the camel, and sending for them, he threatened them with his extreme displeasure if they did not confess the truth. How could they know, he demanded, the camel was lame or blind, that the tail was long or short, or that it was subject to any malady, unless they had it in their possession. On which they severally explained the reasons that had induced them to express their belief of these particulars.
"The first observed, I noticed in the foot-marks of the animal that one was deficient, and I concluded accordingly that he was lame in one of his legs. The second said, I noticed the leaves of the trees on the lefthand side of the road had been snapped or torn off, whilst those on the right were untouched; whence I concluded the animal was blind in his right eye. The third remarked, I saw a number of drops of blood on the road, which I conjectured had flowed from the bites of gnats and flies; and thence supposed the camel's tail was shorter than usual, in consequence of which he could not brush the insects away. The fourth said, I observed that whilst the fore-feet of the camel were planted firmly in the ground, the hind-ones appeared to have scarcely touched it. I guessed they were contracted by pain in the belly of the animal. The king when he heard their explanations was much struck by the sagacity of the parties, and giving the merchant a sum of money to console him for the loss of the camel, he made these four persons his principal ministers."-- Wilson, 220,
Mr. Taylor has committed the fault of inserting much that was
familiar to us: but we do not remember to have met with the following tale of Siva, given by Mr. Wilson, before.
"Surasani, the widow of a man of the hunter tribe who was a devout worshipper of Siva, made, after her husband's decease, the Jangam priests the chief objects of her devotion, entertaining them in her house to the great scandal of her neighbours. The Bramins of the Agraharam complained to the Raja that the widow was accustomed to eat intoxicating drugs, smear her body with ashes, wasli tbe feet of the Jangamas, and treat them, the Bramins, with contumely and abuse. Tbe Raja, being much incensed, proceeded with the Bramins to the house of Surasani, but sought for her and her usual guests in vain, not a soul was to be found. After his departure a Chandala fowler, of black complexion, robust make, and dwarfish stature, having a flat nose and curly bair, smeared with holy ashes, carrying a rosary of Rudraksha beads, and wearing a linga round his neck, passed by the residences of the Bramins making a great noise and pretending to sell fruit, abusing the Bramins, and reverencing the Jangamas. On arriving at the door of Surasani, sbe welcomed him to her abode, washed his feet, gave him food and an apartment to repose in. As the neighbours now thought they had caught her in the fact, having watched the man into the house, they beset the dwelling and brought stakes and ropes to secure him. Surasani, hearing the clamour, said:—' What would you: the disciples of Siva come to the houses of his followers: in the dwelling of the worshippers of Maheswara, Maheswara abides: where the Lingam is reverenced, there is the Lingam:—why do you reproach the worshippers of the destroyer of the sacrifice? why do you insult, and not follow the example? I tell you that he that is (in) my house you cannot discover: the lord of the world is in my house, you cannot see him: the Supreme God is in my apartment—how should sinners such as you behold him? how can you gaze upon the three-eyed god?'
"Saying so she opened the door. The Bramins rushed in, and sought in every place for the Jangama, but could not find him; and they were much astonished and ashamed, being satisfied that the supposed Chandala must have been Siva himself."—IVilson, vol. i. p. 286.
Of the sage Agastya, who first enlightened the southern Kingdoms, we must give some slight particulars.
"In a collection of a hundred verses attributed to the Muni Agastya, upon the means of obtaining divine wisdom, he is made to give a curious account of himself, as appears from the following translations of the passages by a Tamul Bramin in Col. M'Kenzie's employ.
"In verses 10 to 15, Agastya asserts that the Ramayana and Mahabharat are not true records, but were invented by Vyasa, to enable the votaries of Siva to gain a subsistence.
"In the 74th and following verses we have a modification of the Pausanic story of his birth; Agastya is made to say:
"'Hearken—I declare that 1 obtained the eminent name of Agastya, because I was formerly a Sudra; my preceptor was a Bramin who resided to the south of Mahameru.
"' Before receiving his instructions, I purified my animal frame of all imperfections by abstract devotion. I forsook the world, and lived in caves and rocks, when my holy preceptor appeared and said: "Come 1 admit you as my disciple." I assented, and followed him. He lighted a sacrificial fire, and placed it in ajar, into which he commanded me to leap. I did so, and was consumed, and was born again, and issued from the jar, which was then changed into the form of a woman.
"' Verily that jar was a form of Maheswara; and the Bramin of Mahadeva, who were ray parents. They brought me up and trained me in all learning, and finally Siva conferred upon me immortality.'"— Wihon, vol. i. pp. 228, 229.
We give also a short anecdote from Mr. Taylor.
"In A. D. 1371, circumstances singularly illustrative of the times occurred. A horse-dealer brought some poor animals to Mahomed for sale, and on being asked how he dared to affront a Sultan with the offer of such horses, he replied, that he had prepared very superior ones, which had been intercepted by Nag-deo, at Vellumputtam, accompanied with expressions of contempt for the Sultan. This was quite enough as an incitement to Mahomed, and war against the contemptuous Nag-deo was forthwith resolved on; but the sultan-geographer did not precisely know where Vellumputtam was situated. He set out with an army to find it; but made some halts and delays, from ceremonial and other causes, and seems to have needed the spur of a witticism. Inquiring of a Mahomedam religious, what was the distance to Vellumputtam, he was answered that it was so far off, and that he might reach it within a certain very disproportionate length of time, if he only made as much speed as he had been lately doing. This repartee was quite to the point with the petulant Shah: he instantly determined on leaving the heavy body of his army behind, and selecting a light, and but slender, body of cavalry, advanced by forced marches through the very heart of the Telingana country, in which Vellumputtam was situated. Some Afghans, in disguise, were sent forward to hold the guards of Vellumputtam in parley: and, while thus engaged, the cavalry of Mahomed, with himself at their head, galloped up to the gates: the guards were sabred by the Afghans before they could give the alarm; and the place was taken by a coup-de-main. Nag-deo paid the forfeit of his life for his haughtiness and security; and the town became a scene of plunder and devastation.— Taylor, vol. ii. pp. 128, 129.
We suspect, that not even our missionary's zeal will induce him to imitate the following process of conversion, which he has passed over, in the hopelessness of rivalling, we presume; and we are therefore indebted for it to Mr. Wilson in some notices of the Jains.
"In order to convert them, Ekanta Ramaya, one of Basava's disciples, cut off his own head in their presence, and then marched five days in solemn procession through and round the city; and, on the fifth day, replaced his bead upon his shoulders. The Jain Pagadas were thereupon, it is said, destroyed by the Jangamas. It does not appear, however, that the king was made a convert, or that he approved of the principles and conduct of his minister."—Wilson, vol. ii. p. 9.
MISCELLANEOUS LITERARY NOTICES.
A Commission has been appointed by the French government to consider the subject of the systematic piracy of French works in foreign countries, consisting of Villemain as president, Arago, Victor Hugo, Letronne, Rossi, Lenormand, Thenard, Dubois Dumont, A. Didot, Gosselin, Hachette, Royer Collard, and Cave\ This commission has presented its report to the minister of the interior, to the following effect:—
"The commission formed agreeably to your order of October last to examine the question relative to the foreign contrefafon, or the production of spurious editions, of French works, has collected facts and documents, and, after long discussion, has adopted several resolutions which it submits to the attention of the government. Even before its labours were closed, the commission was enabled to judge of the salutary effect produced by the mere knowledge that it was so engaged. A numerous committee of English writers has met with a similar intention, and drawn up a petition to the American Congress for the purpose of obtaining a reciprocal guarantee of literary property in the two countries. The abuse of spurious editions, which is injurious to the interests of English authors in America, is still more actively employed in Europe to the prejudice of French writers. Circumstances have concurred to render this system of plunder as easy as it is lucrative. Establishments for producing spurious editions have been formed beyond the frontier. The low price at which they can afford to sell these editions, in consequence of their having to pay merely the expense of paper and print, has enabled them to supply all the markets of Europe; and the laws of transit allow these Belgian editions to traverse the French territory on their way to those markets. The books of the Customs prove the increase of this trade. Though spurious or foreign editions are prohibited, still they cannot be prevented from entering the country, owing to the law which allows the return of books printed in France and formerly exported."
After enumerating the injurious results of this successful contraband traffic to authors, booksellers, and literature in general, the report thus proceeds:— "Some of the members of this commission were of opinion, that the pirating of scientific and literary works being, even as between nation and nation, an immoral act and a fraudulent traffic, it should no longer be tolerated among us, and that we ought immediately to take upon ourselves, by an absolute prohibition, the defence of foreign interests and the honour of a noble example, even at the risk of not meeting with a like return. France would thus do for foreign copyright what she did in regard to the droit d'aubaine—abolish the injustice in her own territory without securing equal advantages to her own people in foreign countries: in fact, such a measure in France could only apply to English literature. [We shall presently see that German literature also has reason to complain of the piracies of the French.] The majority of the commission was therefore adverse to this useless generosity, choosing rather to offer reciprocity, and to make it a condition of our protection that the same protection should be afforded to us. The commission is consequently of opinion that it should be enacted, either in addition to the projected law on literary property, or by a special disposition, that all works, foreign or French, originally published abroad, should not be allowed to be reprinted during the life of the author, or for a term fixed by law, without his consent or that of the person to whom he has ceded his rights.
"In proposing this measure, the commission is aware that it would be dis
advantageous to France if the reciprocity were confined to that alone : for it is not in printing spurious editions of French works, but in buying them, that the English bookselling trade injures the French. To prohibit the re-publication of modern English books in France would be doing injury to many persons settled in France, and giving a great advantage to English literary property, for which the French would derive no compensation from a similar law enacted in England. The very unequal price of printing and its materials in the two countries explains the difference. The English 'cannot gain by issuing spurious editions, but they gain by purchasing them of the Belgians. It is therefore from the English Customs that compensation must be sought. It would be advisable to stipulate for a law or an order that none but the genuine French editions of modern French works shall be admitted into England. This would of itself deprive the Belgian plunderers of their principal market; and the English publishers would find compensation not only in the prohibition to reprint English works in France without the consent of the author, but in the closing of the French ports against American editions of English works. By a like negociation and administrative measures, a useful protection to French literary interests is to be procured in the states of North Germany, where French books are so much in request. These states might grant reciprocity in this respect, especially as many German authors have suffered from reprints of their works in our great frontier towns."
The remainder of the report relates to internal regulations and the law of transit: we shall therefore proceed to submit to our readers a few facts connected with this subject derived from other sources.
Dr. K. O. Spazier, who resides in Paris, has communicated to a German journal a very interesting paper on the causes of the decline of the book-trade at Paris, in which is the following passage relative to the injurious effects of the system of literary piracy practised at Brussels. "Never," says he, "was this system of literary plunder carried on so systematically, with such address and such impudence, as at Brussels for about the last fifteen years. Where were ever periodical works pirated and offered for subscription, though the pirates cannot be sure that the next following number of the work will appear! Thus they reprint at Brussels the Revue de Paris, the Revue Britannique, and to such a length do these people carry their idleness, even the Paris Voleur itself, which is merely a. selection of the best articles from the French journals, in order to spare themselves the trouble of selecting and the expense of procuring the original journals. All the houses of Brussels keep a number of agents in Paris, who are incessantly watching the booksellers' shops and the printing offices to get hold of any important work, and who often bribe pressmen, compositors, correctors of the press, and the very authors, in order to enable their employers at Brussels to make instant arrangements for reprinting it. Nay, it is frequently the case, that the Paris booksellers themselves promote the views of these men; and the scandalous procedure relative to Lamartine's Voyage de VOrient, which, as the proof-sheets were purloined from the printers, appeared at Brussels before the original was published in Paris, is well known from the lawsuit which followed.
"All the attempts to counteract" this system have failed. According to the Belgian laws, every work printed abroad is public property. On the other hand, if a Paris bookseller were to print at Brussels, he would be amenable to the French laws, which lay the enormous duty of 100 per cent, on the importation of every French work printed beyond the frontiers— a tax imposed by Napoleon, in favour of the French trade at a time when Belgium was a province of France, and the system of piracy subsequently established, could not have been thought of."
A pamphlet on the necessity for affording protection to literary property, from the pen of A.F. Didot, has just appeared, in which he tells us that in 1827, ten of the principal bookselling firms in Paris joined in forming an es