ON THE MOVE ONCE MORE.
silence was unbroken. One remarked a total absence of the drumming, shouting, dancing, and general turmoil that characterize most religious rites in India, rendering them an unmitigated nuisance, for they necessitate police supervision and sanitary precautions on an extensive scale. On these occasions the sexes were separated, the men and women marching on different sides of the road, both going and returning.
Their code of morality was said to be of a not very exalted order; but, I blush to own it, this has become much a matter of opiniona
a And two in fifty scarce agree On what is pure morality.a
Anyhow, they can in all probability compare very favourably in this respect with any other Oriental nation, and, for the matter of that, with many a European one.
Their detractors, or rather the preachers of the disinterested process of civilization, have made capital out of their practice of parting with their daughters for a pecuniary consideration ; but this came into vogue only when the European arrived on the scene and offered prices for the girls that to their simple fathers appeared fabulous.
Nor, in their opinion, did the transaction cast the slightest slur on the young ladyas character, since she was always at liberty to return home and resume her old place in the family, if such were the desire of the principal parties concerned. Moreover, Anglo-Indians areaI apologize, wereaunfortunately among those who, in some encounters at all events, could not afford to throw stones ; it used to be emphatically impressed upon young ladies that a civilian was worth so much,
E 2E 2