By Henri-Charles Puech
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Additional resources for Storia delle religioni. Cina e Giappone
Here lurked the proud ancestral servants, some ofthem ancestral by-blows. But here too, opening along one side ofthe courtyard, was the dynastic shrine, and above it lay the Durbar Hall with 46 THE STATE A~D ITS RULER the sacred bed by which a lamp always burned. Here too was the ancient armoury. The place had the quality known as 'numinous' : it carried one away from the bleak light into another of the Indias, and on the few occasions we slept there I had a feeling of liberation and of initiation.
Was the Agent to the Governor-General who lived in the Residency at Indore. G. was the Political Secretary, living at Delhi or Simla according to the weather. Over him was the Viceroy. Over him the King-Emperor. Dewas and King-Emperor! In Dewas it often seemed that they might have much in common. Could one but short-circuit, all might yet be well. Viewed through the still cooler eyes of the present Republic oflndia, the twin states h~ve entirely disappeared. They are merged in Madhya Bharat, whose capital is Gwalior in hot weather and Indore in cold.
Intelligent though they are over intrigues, Indians too can get confused and identify hopes with facts. One is reduced- as are they - to siding with the people one likes, and I liked Bai Saheba. She lived in ramshackle quarters at the entrance to the city. The departed Maharani was seldom mentioned. She lived, I believe, at Kolhapur or in Bombay. We were, however, aware ofher family's interest in us. Occasionally a stranger would join our circle: sometimes he was a dignified courtier, sometimes a buffoon, like the Subahdar of my first visit.