Imatges de pÓgina
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alone could have perpetrated them. from such causes that the eastern historians have painted the road to the Imperial thrones of India, as lying through vast seas of blood. Yet with all these cruel obstacles in the road to power, we have seen the descendants of Timur, when once firmly seated upon the throne, administering equal justice, punishing oppression, encouraging commerce, fostering industry, and patronising all the finer arts of peace.

But after the invasion of Nadir Shah, and the great divisions of the empire, which immediately succeeded, few traces of those com paratively excellent governments are to be found. The city of Ahmedabad presents the same sad picture of ruin and desolation which is to be found in the once famed cities of Agra, of Delhi, and of Lahore; but as these are the immediate seats of government, and where all the splendid courts of the Moguls were usually held, the ruins, which are there found, must doubtless be more grand, superb, and magnificent.

I would fain have visited those celebrated

sessions to admit of a hope on that head; and f must remain content with having seen, and explored one that is but little inferior, and which, with this exception, displays more of the remains of Mogul splendour and magnificence than is to be found in any other part of Hin dostan *.

* It is, perhaps, necessary for me to state, that this visit was made to Ahmedabad so late in the last century as the year 17810

i

TO THE SECOND VOLUME

OF

THE WANDERER.

As I am now arrived at the close of the Second Volume of the Wanderer, it will be necessary for me to mention a few particulars respecting the progress of the work, before my readers take their final leave of that which is already written, and which has now been laid before the public.

It was my intention to have published fouror five volumes of this work, successively; but I have been induced to defer the pub. lication of the remaining volumes until those already presented to the world, shall have received a favourable sanction from that public, before whom I now stand waiting their decision. If this, my literary offspring, shall receive a smiling welcome, and a portion of that candour, which has ever characterized

shall enable its faults to be considered as those of the head, and not of the heart, I will go forward in the undertaking I have now begun, and continue the career of the Wanderer, through the various pages of succeeding volumes, until the infirmities of old age shall render its death inevitable; but if on the contrary, my claims to the approba tion of that public, which alone can uphold any work, shall be deemed nugatory, or unjust, the growth of this ill-favoured child shall be impeded, and instantly cut off by the speedy hand of the executioner.

The rapid manner in which these volumes were written, and the irregular mode in which they have been printed, has produced many faults, which I am ashamed to own, but which cannot now be recalled or amended.

The typographical errors are indeed proportionately few in number, and not of such material consequence to the welfare of the work, as some hasty and improper sentiments, or expressions, which I have too heedlessly admitted in the rapid progress of my writings. To enumerate those which I principally allude to, in this place, would be equally tedious as

unnecessary; but of this let me assure my readers, that should it be the fate of these volumes to undergo succeeding editions, I will diligently labour to expunge all that can be deemed obnoxious to refinement, to taste, and above all, to virtue. Believing my principles to be founded in truth alone, I am not conscious of having insulted the purity of true religion, or of having infringed on the laws of good morality. But, nevertheless, to those who cannot look beyond the contracted limits of generally received forms (and those are not few), I may appear to have gone far astray from the narrow path of rectitude, both as to my principles, and the mode of expressing them. Be that as it may, I again assure my readers, that in whatever I may seem to have erred, I have best of intentions in view.

nought save the To discourage

vice by exhibiting her native deformity; to render virtue more alluringly attractive by shewing, in some degree, the hidden beauties of her heavenly charms, and the eternal excellence of her inherent qualities; to aid (according to my ability) in dispelling the

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