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tribe of the kshetriyus, the adherents of the lunar race, until
Purusramu, a great solar prince, arose and extinguished the
warriors. They are said to have recovered their strength,
and chased king Sagur up into the Himalayu. Sagur was
evidently the sea-king of the Bay of Bengal, who engaged
largely in maritime expeditions, and extended his power, and
with it probably his religion, to the islands of the eastern
archipelago, in one of which, Bali, he is Btill worshipped as
the god of the ocean.

The Hindoo writers assign fifty'Seven reigns to

the period between Ikswakoo and Ramu, the

great hero and ornament of the solar race, whose deeds have

been immortalized in the great epic of Valmeeki. He was



I.] KRISHNU. 7

married at an early age to Seeta, the daughter of the king
of Mithila, another branch of the solar line, whose capital lay
within a hundred miles of Oude. He passed many years with
her in religious retirement in the forest till she was carried off
by Ravunu, the king of Ceylon. Karnu assembled a large
army, and having in his progress secured the assistance of the
king of the monkeys, marched southward through the great
forest of Dunduku, which terminated on the banks of the
Cavery. That forest is described as the abode of holy sages
and devotees, and of apes and bears. Crossing the Cavery,
Kamu entered on Junustan, or the abode of men the con-
tinental territory of Ravunu. The expedition was crowned
with success, and Ramu recovered his wife ; but having in-
advertently caused the death of his brother, he cast himself
into a river, and as the Hindoo writers affirm, was reunited to
the deity. The expedition of Ramu was the most chivalrous
exploit of that age, more especially when we consider the
very limited resources of the kingdom of Oude, with two in-
dependent sovereigns one at Mithila, and the other at
Benares, within a hundred and fifty miles of his capital. He
is, perhaps, the earliest of deified heroes, as his age is
generally fixed at 1,200 years before our era, though on
calculations by no means satisfactory.
The The next great event in the heroic age of India

Muhabharut. was tlle g^^ war? ce i e b rat ed in another Hindoo
epic, the Muhabharut. The main object of this poem is to
commemorate the exploits of Krishnu, another deified hero,
who took a prominent part in the contest between the Pandoos
and the Kooroos, two branches of the lunar line, for the
possession of Hustinapore, situated in the neighbourhood of
Delhi. Yoodistheer, the chief of the Pandoos, was resolved,
it is said, to celebrate the sacrifice of the horse, which implied
the possession of supreme dominion. The Kooroos burned
with indignation at this arrogant assumption ; and their chief,
unable to prevent it, had recourse to artifice. He engaged
Yoodistheer in deep play, and led him on to stake his wife and



8 BATTLE OF KOOROO-KSHETRU. [CHAP.

his kingdom, both of which were lost at one throw of the
dice, and he was obliged to go into exile for twelve years.
Krishnu, a scion of the royal family at Muttra, on the Ganges,
had already signalized himself in a conflict with the king of
Mugudu, in south Behar, and now, in conjunction with
Buluram, accompanied Yoodistheer and his four brothers in
their exile. The heroes wandered through the various provinces
of India, performing notable feats of valour, and leaving some
memorial of then: romantic adventures in every direction. At
the close of the period of exile Yoodistheer returned with his
companions to the banks of the Jumna, and demanded the
restoration of his kingdom. His opponent, Dooryudhun, re-
fused his claim, and declared that he should not have as much
land as could be covered by the point of a needle. There
remained, therefore, no alternative but to decide the question
by an appeal to arms.

The Battle of I n this great battle fought on the plain, where,
Kooroo-kshetru. fa a f ter t j mej ^ e i ast decisive battle between the
Hindoos and the Mahomedans took place, all the tribes in
northern India were ranged on one side or the other. Chiefs
from Culinga, the sea-coast of Orissa, and even the Yuvuns
the name generally given to the residents beyond the Indus
are said to have taken a share in it. It lasted eighteen days,
and the carnage on both sides was prodigious. Dooryudhun
was at length slain, and victory declared for the Pandoos ;
but when Yoodistheer beheld the field covered with the
bodies of friends and foes, all descended from a common
ancestor, he became disgusted with the world and determined
to withdraw from it. He entered Hustinapore and performed
the funeral obsequies of his rival ; after which he placed the
grandson of his brother Urjoon on the throne, and retired
to Dwarka, in Guzerat, in company with Krishnu, who had
founded a kingdom there. That hero was soon after slain
"at the fountain of the lotus," by one of the wild foresters
of the tribe of the Bheels. Yoodistheer proceeded through
Sinde towards the north, and is supposed to have perished in



l. THE RAMATUN AND MUHABHARUT. 9

the snowy range. According to the popular notion, he
ascended to heaven, which was by no means incredible, as
the paradise of more than one of the Hindoo deities is placed
on the inaccessible peaks of the Himalaya.
influence of These two events, the expedition of Ramu, and
these two the battle of Kooroo-kshetru, are the most impor-
tant in the annals of the lunar and tne solar race.
The genius of poetry has fixed the admiration of a hundred
generations on them, and supplied a rich mine of images from
age to age. The author of the Kamayun was Valmeeki, whom
the gratitude of his fellow countrymen has crowned with
the wreath of immortality, by ranking him among those who
never die. He is supposed to have flourished in the second
century before our era. The same period has also been
assigned to the composer of the Muhabharut. Indeed, from
the terms in which he describes the Yuvun Usoor, the
demon or giant who engaged in combat with Krishnu, it
has been conjectured that the poem must have been written
after the invasion of Alexander the Great. The author
was Vyasu, who has been confounded, through ignorance
or flattery, with the great man who collected the Vedus,
which is chronologically impossible. It is, moreover said, that
a Vyasu appears in every age, though it is certain that no
second Vyasu has since appeared among the poets of India.
Krishnu was deified after his death. His adventures, and
more particularly his flirtations with the milkmaidSj have ren-
dered him the most popular of gods among an amorous people ;
but the sects founded on the worship of Ramu, Krishnu, and
other deities, are among the more modern innovations of
Hindooism. Buluram, the brother of Krishnu, is said to
have founded a kingdom, of which Palibothra, the capital,
became the wonder of India, though even the site of it is
now matter of conjecture.

The Takshut The annals of Hindostan for several centuries
invasion. a ft er fo e asgume( j period of the great war, are
involved hi impenetrable obscurity, but it would appear that



10 EXPEDITION OF DARIUS. [dlAP.

about six centuries before our era, a new swarm from the
teeming hive of Scythia poured across the Indus upon the
plains of India. Another swarm, is supposed to have moved
down at the same time on the north of Europe, and settled in
Scandinavia, the cradle of the English nation. This simul-
taneous emigration to the east and to the west, may assist in
explaining that similarity of manners and customs which has
been discovered on many points between the Scandinavians
and the natives of India. These invaders were denominated
the Takshuk, or serpent race, because the serpent was said to
be their national emblem. Under their chief, Suhesnag, they
probably overran the northern provinces of Hindostan, and
became gradually incorporated with the tribes which had
preceded them. They flourished for ten generations, and
appear to have professed the Boodhist creed. Of this
dynasty was Nundu, or Muhanundu, who was seated on the
throne when Alexander the Great appeared on the banks of
the Sutlege, and was denominated by the Grecian historians,
the king of the Prasii, or of the east.

me expedition The first expedition to India from the west of
which we have anything like an authentic record,
is that of Darius, the king of Persia, who ascended the throne
of Cyrus, in the year 518 before our era, and extended his
conquests from the sea of Greece to the confines of India.
His admiral, Scylax, was then directed to construct a flotilla
on the higher Indus, and proceed down that stream to the
ocean. The report which he ' made of the wealth and mag-
nifiVvace of the country through which he passed, determined
Darius to attempt the conquest of it. He crossed the Indus
with a large army, and succeeded in annexing the countries
bordering on that river to his great empire. The precise
extent of his conquest cannot be determined, but there is
every reason to conclude that his Indian province must have
been of no inconsiderable magnitude, since it was esteemed
more valuable than any other satrapy, and is said to have
furnished one-third the revenues of the Persian empire. This



I.] BOODIIISM. 11

tribute, moieover, is said to have been paid in gold, while
that from the other divisions west of the Indus was delivered
in silver.

Religion of It was about the period of the Persian invasion,

, that Goutumu gave a fixed character to the insti-
stutions of Boodhism. It has been supposed that all the fifty-
six tribes of the lunar race professed that creed, and Goutumu
was reckoned the seventh Boodh. He was born at Kupilu,
but the seat of the religion was planted at Gya, in the
kingdom of Mugudu, or Behar, which the Chinese and Indo-
Chinese nations consider the most sacred spot in the world.
The Boodhists rejected the whole of the brahminical system
of gods and goddesses, repudiated the doctrine of caste, and
adhered exclusively to the spiritual worship of the Vedus.
The priesthood amongst them was not hereditary, but formed
a distinct community, recruited from the secular ranks, bound
to observe a vow of celibacy, and to renounce the pleasures
of sense. The hereditary priesthood of the brahmins, on the
contrary, admitted no accessions from the lay classes, and
considered marriage as indispensable as investiture with the
thread, in the hope of giving birth to a son who should perform
the funeral rites of his father, and secure him a seat in
paradise. The death of Goutumu, is fixed by the general
concurrence of authorities, in the year 550 before our era.
spread of The religion of Boodh made prodigious progress

Boodhism. after ttie (jga^ of Goutumu, while the creed of the
brahmins was confined to the small kingdom of Cunouj. Two
centuries later, in the reign of Asoca, Boodhism was triumphant
through Hindostan. His edicts are still to be seen inscribed
on the celebrated column at Delhi, on a similar column in
Guzerat, and on a third in Cuttack, as well as in numerous
caves and rocks. Boodhism was introduced into Ceylon about
the end of the third century before our era. Shortly after, it
spread through Tibet and Tartary, and was carried into China
about the year 65. In Hindostan the brahmins exhibited the
most rancorous hostility to their powerful rivals ; and we



12 ALEXANDER THE GREAT. [CHAP.

learn from the report of a Chinese pilgrim to the shrine at
Gya, in the fifth century, that the strength of Boodhism had
materially declined. But it appears subsequently to have re-
covered some of its pristine vigour, and was not finally
expelled from India till the tenth century ; though we have
the assurance that it was the prevailing creed at Benares a
centuiy later, and was predominant in Guzerat as late as the
twelfth century. At the present time its votaries throughout
Asia are more numerous than those of any other religion.
Alexander the The empire of Persia was broken up by Alexander
Great. ^he Great, the Grecian king of Macedon, and the

greatest military genius of antiquity. After the defeat and death
of Darius, the last Persian monarch of his dynasty, the troops
of Alexander were engaged for three years in the most arduous
military enterprises, and suffered incredible hardships in their
winter campaigns, amidst mountains covered with snow. As
a recompense for these toils their commander held out to them
the spoils of India ; and, having subjugated Cabul, arrived on
the banks of the Indus, in the year 331 before our era, at the
age of thirty. Hindostan was ill-prepared to resist the legions
of this mighty conqueror. It was split up into a number of
independent states, oftener at war than at peace with each
other; and a Greek historian affirms that there were no
fewer than a hundred and eighteen different kingdoms in the
north. Alexander, after having sent envoys to demand the
submission of the princes in the Punjab, crossed the Indus, like
all previous invaders, at Attok, and entered India with 120,000
troops. Of the principal chiefs of the country, Abissares,
whose territory lay in the mountainous region, probably of
Cashmere, cent his brother with rich presents to conciliate the
invader. Taxiles, who ruled the country between the Indus
and the Hydaspes, or Jelum, entertained him with great hos-
pitality at his capital, Taxila, where Alexander left his
invalids. But Porus, whose dominions stretched eastward in
the direction of Hustinapore, or Delhi, resolved to offer the
most determined resistance to the progress of Alexander, and



I.] CONQUEST OF THE PUNJAB. 13

assembled his whole force on the banks of the Jelum. The
river, swelled by the periodical rams, and at the tune a mile
broad, rolled impetuously between the two camps. Porus
planted a long line of elephants on the margin of the stream,
and presented an impenetrable line of defence to his opponent.
But Alexander discovered an island in the river, about ten
miles above the camp, and took advantage of a dark and tem-
pestuous night to cross over to it with 11,000 men, who were
landed on the opposite bank before dawn. The main body of
the Grecian army was in the meantime drawn up as usual, facing
the Indian camp, and Porus was thus led to believe that the
iroops who had crossed consisted only of a small brigade.
But he was speedily undeceived by the rout of the force
which he had sent to meet it, and the death of his son who
was in command, and being now certain that it was Alexander
himself who had crossed the river, prepared to encounter him
with 4,000 horse and 30,000 foot, all of the kshetriyu tribe ;
warriors by birth and profession. Alexander's small army was
composed of veterans, strangers to defeat, and, under such
a leader, invincible. The field was obstinately contested,
but nothing could withstand the charge of Alexander's
cavalry. Porus continued to maintain the conflict long after
the great body of his troops had deserted him, but was at
length persuaded to yield Alexander, who always honoured
valour in an enemy, received him with distinguished courtesy;
and not only restored his kingdom, but made considerable
additions to it. Porus did not abuse this confidence, but re-
mained ever after faithful to his generous victor,
progress and After tne defeat of Porus, Alexander crossed the
mum of Chenab and the Ravee, and came in contact with
a body of Cathaians, probably Tartar immigrants,
who maintained an obstinate struggle, which is said to have
terminated only after the slaughter of 16,000, and the cap-
tivity of 70,000 of their number. On reaching the banks of
the Sutlege Alexander heard of the great Gangetic kingdom
of Mugudu, the king of which, it was reported, could bring



14 PROJECTS AND DEATH OF ALEXANDER. [CHAP.

30,000 cavalry, and 600,000 foot, and 9,000 elephants into the
field. He determined to march down and plant his standard
on the battlements of its magnificent capital, Palibothra, which
was nine miles in length ; and his troops received orders to
prepare for crossing the river. But they were worn out with
the fatigue and wounds of eight campaigns ; their spirits had
moreover been depressed by the deluge of rain to which they
had been exposed during the monsoon, and they refused to
accompany him any farther. He employed menace and flattery
by turns, but nothing could shake their resolution, and he was
reluctantly obliged to make the Sutlege the limit of his ex-
pedition, and return to the Indus, where he caused a large
flotilla to be constructed, and sailed down the stream with all
the pomp of a conqueror.

The views of Alexander were gigantic and
projects and beneficial beyond those of every other ruler
in ancient times. He had erected the port of
Alexandria on the Mediterranean shore of Egypt, and at the
end of twenty-two centuries it still continues to attest the
grandeur of his plans. He now resolved to establish a com-
mercial intercourse between the coast of India, the rivers of
Persia and the Red Sea. For this object he built a city and
harbour at the estuary of the Indus, and fitted out a large
fleet, which he entrusted to his admiral, Nearchus, with orders
to proceed to the mouth of the Euphrates. The voyage, though
tedious, proved successful, and was justly considered one of
the greatest naval achievements of the age. In the midst of
these great projects Alexander caught a jungle fever in the
marshes of Babylon, and died two years after his return from
India, at the early age of thirty-two. He was fully bent on
returning to it; and there can be little doubt that if he
had succeeded in crossing the Sutlege he would have made a
complete conquest of the country, and given it the benefit of
European civilization. His name does not appear in any
Hindoo work a proof of the lamentable imperfection of the
records which have come down to us; but his fame was widely



I.] NTJNDTJ CHUNBRA-GOOITA. 15

diffused through India by the Mahomedan conquerors, among
whom he was esteemed a magnificent hero. It was carried
far and wide on the ocean with the stream of their conquests;
and the distant islander of Java and Sumatra may be found
singing the deeds of the mighty " Iscander."
Nundu, At the period of Alexander's invasion, Nundu,

Chundra-goopta. a prince of the Takshuk race, was seated on tho
Mugudu throne at Palibothra. He was assasinated by his
prime minister, and is said to have been succeeded by eight
sons in succession. Their illegitimate brother, Chundra-goopta,
the offspring of a barber's wife, was expelled from the kingdom,
and wandered for some years through the various provinces
of Hindostan. He was at length placed upon the throne
through the efforts of the minister, Chanikya, who put all tho
members of the royal family to death, and afterwards endea-
voured to atone for the crime by penances so severe, that
after the lapse of 2,000 years, the " remorse of Chanikya," is
still the popular emblem of penitence. Chundra-goopta was
a prince of extraordinary energy and talent, and, though a
soodra, is stated in the hyperbolical language of the Poorans to
have " brought the whole earth under one umbrella." The
empire of Alexander the Great was, on his death, divided
among his generals, of whom Seleucus, one of the ablest and
most enterprising, obtained the province of Babylon, which
comprised all the territory up to the Indus which had been
subjugated by his master. Having determined to carry out
his ambitious views on the east, he crossed the Indus with a
powerful army, and was opposed by Chundra-goopta and the
whole strength of the Mugudu empire. According to the Greek
historians, Seleucus was completely victorious, which it is
difficult to reconcile with the fact that in the treaty he made
with the Indian prince, he resigned all the territory which had
been acquired east of the Indus for an annual subsidy of fifty
elephants, and likewise bestowed his daughter in marriage on
him. Megasthenes was at the same time appointed his repre-
sentative at the court of Palibothra, and it is from his reports



16 THE MUGUDU KINGDOM. [CH\P.

that the Greek writers chiefly derived their knowledge of
India.

TheMugudu After a reign of twenty-four years, Chundra-
kingdom. goopta was succeeded by his son, Mitra-goopta,
with whom Seleucus renewed the treaty. The great kingdom
of Mugudu maintained its pre-eminence in the valley of the
Ganges, under a succession of royal families who appear to
have been either soodras or boodhists, for a period of eight
centuries from the year 350 before our era to 450 after it.
Under their government the country is said to have attained
the highest prosperity. A royal road extended from Pali-
bothra to the Indus, with a small column at every stage.
Another road stretched across the country to Broach, at that
time the great emporium of commerce on the western
coast. They encouraged learning with great munificence,
and it is recorded that they endeavoured to diffuse it among
the common people by the cultivation of the vernacular
tongues ; and this, as it would seem, at the period when the
Sanscrit had reached the summit of perfection in the two
epics of the Muhabharut and the Ramaj^un. They appear also
to have given every encouragement to trade, both domestic
and foreign. While the silent Indus, as at present, exhibited
no sign of commercial activity, the Ganges was covered with
sails, and the produce of its various provinces was brought
down to the sea-coast and conveyed across the ocean to the
east and the west. The kingdom of Mugudu embraced what
is designated in history the three Culingas ; that is, the
northern section of the Coromandel coast ; the sea face of
Bengal from Balasore to Chittagong, then the abode of men
and not of tigers, and the coast of Arracan. Its subjects
were thus stimulated to engage in maritime enterprise, and the
Mugudu fleet crossed the bay of Bengal to the island of Java,
and introduced the Hindoo religion to its inhabitants either in
the current of conquest or of commerce. The native histo-
rians of that island fix the year 75 before our era as the time
when they received Hindooism from India. Many mag/iifi-



I-] HIXDOOISM IN THE EASTERN ISLANDS. 17

cent monuments attest the diffusion of this religion, besides
the fact that the language of literature and devotion in
Java is a form of the Sanscrit. In the fourth century a
Chinese pilgrim recorded that the island was peopled by
Hindoos ; that in its ports he found vessels manned by
Hindoo sailors which had sailed from the mouth of the
Ganges to Ceylon, and from thence to Java, and were pre-
paring to proceed on to China. A Hindoo government existed
in Java till within the last 400 years, when it was subverted
by the Mahomedans. Hindooism still continues to flourish in
the neighbouring island of Bali, where the fourfold division of
caste still survives, and widows are said still to ascend the
funeral pile. Yet so signal has been the mutation of habits
and opinions among the Hindoos of India, that any Hindoo
who might visit the country to which his ancestors carried
the institutes of his religion, and in which they exist in
greater integrity than in India itself, would not be permitted
to remain within the pale of the caste.
____-_. The Hindoo annalists affirm that about twc

The Ugnikools.

centuries before our era, the brahmins " regene-
rated the Ugnikools," literally the fiery generation, to fight
their battles with the boodhists. The real origin of this race
is lost in hopeless obscurity, and we have only a poetical
version of their appearance, which may serve as an example
of the mode in which historical facts have been bequeathed
to posterity, and of the difficulty of separating them from
allegory. Ignorance and infidelity, we are told, had spread
over the land ; the sacred books were trampled under foot,
and mankind had no refuge from the monstrous brood of
boodhists. At the summit of Mount Aboo dwelt the holy
sages who had carried their complaints to the sea of curds,
on which the father of creation was floating on the back of a
hydra. He commanded them to return to Mount Aboo, and
recreate the race of the kshetriyas whom Purusramu, an
incarnation of the deity, had exterminated. They returned
accordingly with the four chief divinities, and a multitude of





18 EXPULSION OF THE BOODHISTS. [CHAP.

secondary gods. The fountain of fire was purified with water
brought from the sacred stream of the Ganges. After the
performance of expiatory rites, each of the four gods formed
an image and cast it into the fountain, and there sprung up
the four men who became the founders of Rajpoot greatness.



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