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Through Town and Jungle (Fourteen Thousand Miles A Wheel Among The Temples and People of The Indian Plain)

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Item Code: NAL987
Author: William Hunter Workman and Fanny Bullock Workman
Publisher: Primus Books, Delhi
Language: English
Edition: 2013
ISBN: 9789380607696
Pages: 402 (Throughout B/W Illustrations)
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details 9.5 inch X 6.5 inch
Weight 840 gm
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Fully insured
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Shipped to 153 countries
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Book Description

A couple of years ago the National Archives of India launched a ‘Reprint Series’. The intent was to make high quality published books accessible to the present-day readers. Many of the original editions of those books are to be found in our collection at the National Archives of India.

I am delighted Through Town and Jungle: Fourteen Thousand Miles A Wheel Among the Temples and People of the Indian Plain by William Hunter Workman and Fanny Bullock Workman. I trust this Will generate greater interest in reprinting classics published under the Raj.



Scattered over the broad expanse of the Indian peninsula from Cape Comorin to the Himalayas and beyond are ruins of architecture and art, which show that, at a time when the greater part of Europe was slumbering in the darkness of barbarism, civilizations existed in India, that produced remarkable monuments expressive of Eastern habits of thought and embodying features never attained in the West, which to-day excite the admiration of all who study them.

Since these structures were built the genius which created them has died out, the civilizations have faded, and building art has fallen to a low level. The centres of population have changed, whole peoples have disappeared, and where the former builders lived by the million many of the works of their hands stands to-day in the midst of lonely and not easily accessible jungles.

Without including the art of Burma, which is quite different from that of India, there are six styles of architecture in India, each distinct in itself though possessing more or less affinity to the others, each the outcome of religious thought and traditions viz.-Buddhist, Indo-Aryan, Jain, Dravidian, Chalukyan, and Mohammedan. The remains now existing embrace structural temples, cave temples cut in rock hills and in huge boulders, sculptures on rock, figures of animals, towers, palaces mosques, and tombs.

Our object in visiting India was chiefly to study these remains. To see even a tithe of the comparatively few now left required extensive travel of a primitive kind and the endurance of much hardship.

We set out to make the necessary journey on cycles so far as the existence of roads would permit, and in the execution of our purpose we cycled with some interruptions, where roads failed, from near the southern extremity of India northward far into Kashmir, and from Cuttack on the eastern coast over Calcutta across the whole breath of India to Somnath Patan on the Arabian Sea, besides leaving the main lines at many points to travel in the interior. This journey occupied three cold weathers, and in the course of it we cycled above fourteen thousand miles as measured by cyclometer, besides covering thousand more by rail, steamboat, tonga, tum-tum, bullock-cart, palki, and on foot, visiting nearly all parts of the Peninsula.

With a several weeks’ tour in Burma we also cycled extensively Ceylon, and from Batavia through the island of Java to Soerabaya at its eastern extremity, visiting the remarkable temples at Boro Boedor, Brambannan, the Dieng Plateau, Singasari and other places, and spent ten days at the great temples at Angkor in Siam, all off which show a strong Indian influence and are considered to be largely the work of Indian artisans.

During a second visit to India of two years’ duration we were able to verify our first impressions. We were present at the great Durbar at Delhi, where was a display of Oriental magnificence, the like of which has not been seen in India for a time, could now be seen nowhere else, and may be seen again.

In the summer of 1903, while we were absent on our expedition Srinagar hotel were destroyed in the great flood which swept over the Kashmir Valley, and destroyed in the great flood which swept over the Kashmir Valley, and among them many hundred photographs and negatives of Indian scenes, from which this book was to have been illustrated. To partially replace these three months of the winter of 1903-1904 were devoted to revisiting as many temple centres as possible but the number that could be reached was comparatively small, and lost negatives of many types and objects of interest mentioned in the following pages could not be replaced. Quite a number of photographs more or less damaged have however been used.

In the course of our Indian wandering we found many things of interest, besides architectural remains, in the country itself and manners and customs of the people, some of which we attempt to describe in this narrative.

Careless readers are apt to distort the meaning of and to make unwarrantable deductions from the statements of authors and to ascribe to the latter conclusions which their writings do not justify. Authors may mention facts, which are patent to all, without making themselves responsible for any opinions as to their bearing or the conditions which underlie them. Facts speaks for themselves, and may be taken as straws to show which way the wind blows, but we would say here, that any conclusions, except such as we ourselves state, based on straws we may drop, are made on the responsibility, of those making them and not on ours.

While it is impossible for any one with his eyes open to travel extensively in a country like India teeming with millions of different races and religious without meeting with conditions that might in his opinion be improved, yet one must also be impressed with the magnitude f the task, which the Government of India had has on its hands, and of the immense difficulty in the face of human limitations of correcting abuses, which have their origin in and religious customs and prejudices, that cannot lightly be interfered with.

Hence realising that on traveler, unless he has lived a long time in a country and had special opportunities of studying its institutions, is in a position to understand fully the problems that confront its Government, much less to criticise the administration of its affairs, we leave all questions of politics to those better equipped in such matters.

It is, however, a well-known fact that an alert traveler sees more of a country in certain ways than its inhabitants. His impression are more vivid, he notices much that familiarity and habit cause them to overlook, and from the point of view of a disinterested party he can see the true bearing of events, in regard to which their judgment may be biased.

The difficulties of travel, the study of nature, architecture and sculpture, the manners and customs of the people, and the conditions of existence, gave us enough to do furnished more material than can be crowded into one volume.

A cycle tour in India id quite a different things form what it is in the countries of Europe, in Algeria, or even in Ceylon and Java. In all of these countries what may night in something that passes under the name of an inn or hotel, where one’s most pressing necessities are provided for. At least a bed, be it ever so poor, with a mattress and coverings, towels, and food, are to be had.

In India hotels, many of which are exceedingly uncomfortable places to stop at, are found only in the larger cities, which are comparatively few in number and scattered over a wide area. The cyclist has to find shelter on the greater part of hi in dak bungalows, the only places accessible to the public that represent an inn, which are by no means always to be found in localities convenient to him, or in inspection or engineer bungalows built at certain places for the use of Government officials when on duty, which can only be occupied by permission of the Executive Engineer or some other office of the district, who usually lives too far away from the bungalow to admit of the required permission being readily obtained.

The bungalows are generally, through not always, provided with bedsteads or charpoys consisting of a wooden frame held together by an interlacing or broad cotton tape, tables, chairs and a heterogeneous, often exceedingly small amount of china. This lat we have more than once seen reduced to two or three pieces. Mattresses, pillows, and linen, are rarely found.

Failing to meet with a bungalow the cyclist may occasionally find a refuge in the waiting-room of a small railway station, containing two wooden chairs and a wooden bench, or he may be obliged occupy the porch of some native building. On rare occasions a missionary or planter may take pity on him and lodge him, which hospitality he regards as a godsend and duly appreciates.




  Introduction IX
Chapter I The Hotel at Tuticorin 1
  Madura a South Indian Tourist Mecca  
  An Interview with a Native Missionary  
  Difficulty of Finding Lodgings and Food on the Highways-Crossing Rivers  
  Returns expected by Natives for Services Rendered-Colour the Keynote of Dravidian India  
  Our Travelling Com  
  panions the Birds and Animals…  
Chapter II The Dravidian Race and the Style of its Temples 15
  The Dak Bungalow at Chidambaran  
  Some Beautiful Shrines  
  A Visit to an Idol and a Temple Procession  
  Indian Methods of Irrigation  
  Mahabalipur and the manifold attractions of its Temples  
  Sculptures and Scenery  
Chapter III En Route from Madras to Ootacamund 38
  How We were made comfortable at Ranipat  
  The Temple at Vellore  
  Christianised Indians  
  Railway Station Waiting-rooms  
  Crossing a River in a Lotus-leaf Boat  
  Curious Figures on the Roadside  
  The Long Ascent to the Blue Hills  
  Ootacamund the Mountain Paradise of the South  
  The Aboriginal Todas, their Habits and Customs…  
Chapter IV From the Rhododendron-clad Hills to the Mysore Jungle 63
  Our Madrasi Bearer  
  The Dak-tree  
  Indian Hotels and Cookery  
  The Chamundi Bull  
  The Chalu- kyan Temple at Somnathpur  
  The Babu in Government employ  
  Relation of the Chicken to the Bungalow dietary  
  Sravana Belgola  
  The Gomatasvara  
Chapter V The Temples at Belur and Hulabid 85
  Disappearance of Temples  
  Trees and Vegetation as Temple Destroyers  
  Narrow Ideas of Europeans regarding Indian Temple Architecture  
  Temples at Nagalpur, Harranhalli and Kora-vangula  
  More about our Christian Servant  
  Features of the Mysore Plateau  
  The beautiful Gopuras at Tadpatri  
  An Experience with and Observations on Thirst  
Chapter VI Charms of the Chadarghat Hotel-Hyderabad Deccan a Centre for Indian Types 121
  Enlightened Native Gentlemen and a Glimpse behind the Purdah of their fair unenlightened Wives  
  More splendid but neglected Chalukyan Art at Hammancondah  
  The Torans at Warangal  
  Our Record Cycle Run in India  
  Hospitality of Palmar Missionaries, their School  
  Palm and Banyan  
  Unbridged Rivers and Sandy Nullahs  
  Torrid Bellary  
  Hampi Capital of Ancient Vijayanagar  
Chapter VII Early Jain Architecture at Gadag and Lakkundi 139
  Reception at Lakkundi  
  Mohammedan Bijapur  
  In Plague-infected Districts  
  Thorny Roads deadly to Cycle Tyres  
  Self-sealing Air Tubes  
Chapter VIII Buddhist Cave Temples at Bhaja and Karli 146
  The Dak Bungalows at Pachora and Ferdapur  
  What the Ajanta Caves tell of Buddhist Art  
  Remarkable Mural Frescoes  
  Buddhist, Brahman, and Jain Caves at Ellora  
  The Ksilasa  
Chapter IX The Sanchi Tope-The "New Man" in India 172
  Roadside Trees  
  Gwalior the Splendid  
  Legend of its Origin  
  Painted Palace of Man Singh  
  Temple of Padmanatha  
  Rock-cut Statues of Jain Prophets  
  The Taj Mahal….  
Chapter X Fatehpur-Sikri 189
  Temple of Gobind Deva at Bindrabun and its Monkeys  
  Deeg and its double corniced Palace  
  The Hodal Bungalow and the Municipal Officer  
  Old Delhi  
  The Grand Trunk Road  
  The Golden Temple at Amritzar  
  The Ekka…  
Chapter XI Pioneer Cycle Run from Darjeeling to Calcutta 204
  Opinions and Advice of disin-terested Persons  
  -Descent to Siliguri  
  Tiffin under a Banyan facing Everest and Kanchenjanga  
  Country, Birds, and Animals South of Bhagalpur  
  The Bungalow at Noneghat  
  A curious Sunrise Refraction  
  A Cremation…  
Chapter XII Orissa, the Land of Rivers 211
  Midnapore, Jelasore, Soro-Jajpur and its Hindu Gods  
  On to Cuttack  
  Palm-bordered Pilgrim Route to Puri  
  Jagannath and his Temple  
  In Palkis by Night to Konarak  
  The Black Pagoda….  
Chapter XIII Approach to the Temple City of Bhuvaneswara 233
  Visiting the Saivite Shrines  
  Indo-Aryan Temples  
  The Great Temple  
  Temple of Mukteswara  
  Floral and Animal Sculpture  
  Buddhist Caves at Udayagiri and Kbandagiri….  
Chapter XIV From Calcutta Westward on the Grand Trunk Road 247
  through the Bengal Coal Region  
  Buddh-Gaya, the Birthplace of Buddhism  
  The Temple-Asoka Rail  
  Causeway over River Sonne  
  The All-knowing Man at the Dehri Bungalow  
  The hospitable Sasseram Resident  
  The Tope of Sarnath  
  The Holy Man  
  Mahoba the First Chandel Capital  
  The Kakra Temple  
  The Mahoba Club….  
Chapter XV To Khajuraha via Chhatarpur 264
  Guests of the State  
  The First Meal  
  Lavish Hospitality  
  Indo-Aryan Art  
  Splendid and Elaborate Hindu and Jain Temples  
  The Ghantai, Mahadeo, and Parswanatha  
  Second Visit to Khajuraha….  
Chapter XVI Mediaeval Palaces 280
  Jeypore a modern Rajput City  
  Deficient Accommodation for Visitors at Ajmere  
  In the Bikanir Desert  
  A Night ill an open Choultri at Sojate  
  Cenotaphs of Rajputana  
  The Rajputs…  
Chapter XVII Deoli 294
  Dawn on the Road to Bundi  
  A picturesque City, attractive Streets, Monuments and Temples  
  A Palace of Tangled Walls and Winding Passages  
  Chitor a Dead City, once the important Capital of the Children of the Sun  
  Its Romantic History  
  How Women as well as Men died for the Glory of Chitor  
  The final Fall of the City…  
Chapter XVIII Oodeypore 312
  Royal Palace  
  Peshola Lake  
  The Island Palaces  
  A Royal Pro-cession  
  Elephant Riding  
  Udaipur in Bhopal  
  Legend of building of the Temple  
  The Temple  
  Temple of Ambarnath  
  Mandu the Old Ghori Capital  
  The Patan Dome  
  Interesting Remains on Island of Mandata….  
Chapter XIX Famine, Scenery and People in the Bhil Country 330
  Story of its Founding  
  Ahmedabad the City of Dust-Its Unique Indo  
  Mohammedan Architecture  
  Vicissitudes under many Rulers…  
Chapter XX Katyawar 348
  A Parched and Famine-stricken Land  
  Palia Stones  
  Girnar Temple  
  Hill of the Jains  
  Old Buddhist Caves ill the Uparcot  
  Palitana and the Sacred Hill of Sutrunjya  
  Siege by Mahmud of Ghazni  
  Temple and other Remnants of former Splendour…  
Chapter XXI Hoti 364
  Mardan and other Centres of Grseco  
  Buddhist Art  
  Kashmir Smats  
  Visit to the Khan of Shiwa in Yusafsai  
  Gandbara Sculptures…  
  Index… 377


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