A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 07 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 785 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 07.
general in chief of the army.  In the great battle against the four Mahometan kings all the three brothers were present, but the first and the last were never heard of more, neither dead nor alive.  Temi rajah alone escaped from the battle, with the loss of one eye.  On the news of this great defeat coming to the city of Bijanagur, the wives and children of the three tyrants fled with the imprisoned king, and the four Mahometan kings entered the city in great triumph, where they remained for six months, searching everywhere for money and valuable effects that had been hidden.  After this they departed, being unable to retain possession of so extensive a dominion at such a distance from their own territory[135].

[Footnote 135:  The reason in the text for evacuating the kingdom of Narsinga, or Bijanagur, is very unsatisfactory, as it in fact bordered on their dominions.  More probably they could not agree on the partition, each being afraid of the others acquiring an ascendancy, and they satisfied themselves with the enormous spoils of the capital.  This event has been before mentioned from De Faria.—­E.]

After the retreat of the four kings, Temi rajah returned to Bijanagur, which he repeopled, and sent word to the merchants of Goa to bring all the horses to him that they had for sale, promising good prices; and it was on this occasion that the two merchants went up with their horses, whom I accompanied.  This tyrant also issued a proclamation, that if any merchant happened to have any of the horses which were taken in the late battle, even although they happened to have the Bijanagur mark upon them, that he would pay for them their full values, and give safe conduct for all who had such to come to his capital.  When by this means he had procured a great number of horses, he put off the merchants with fair promises, till he saw that no more horses were likely to come, and he then ordered the merchants to depart without giving them any thing for the horses.  I remained in Bijanagur seven months, though I might have concluded my whole business in one; but it was necessary for me to remain until the ways were cleared of thieves and robbers, who ranged up and down in whole troops.

While I rested there I saw many strange and barbarous deeds done among these Gentiles.  When any noble man or woman dies, the dead body is burned.  If a married man die, his widow must burn herself alive for the love of her husband, and along with his body; but she may have the respite of a month, or even of two or three, if she will.  When the appointed day arrives on which she is to be burnt, she goeth out from her house very early in the morning, either on horseback or on an elephant, or on a stage carried by eight men, apparelled like a bride, and is carried in triumph all round the city, having her hair hanging down about her shoulders, garnished with jewels and flowers, according to her circumstances, and seemingly as joyful as a bride in Venice going to her nuptials. 

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