To NOOR MAHOMMED KHÂN and MAHOMMED GHYÂS; dated from BANGALORE, 5th WÂSAAEY. (14th September.)

WE have, of late, repeatedly heard, that Râo Râsta having sent for you, you declined waiting upon him, on account of a dispute that had arisen respecting a woman belonging to some Musulman; returning for answer to his message, “that if they would let the woman in “question go,* you would attend him.” This account has occasioned us the utmost surprise and astonishment. This is a domestic disturbance among the inhabitants of their own country. Where was the necessity of your interfering in this matter, or of your refusing to wait upon Râo Râsta when he sent for you? thereby throwing our affairs into confu­sion. It seems to us, that old age* must have produced this deviation* [or change] in your conduct [character or disposition], and rendered you thus unmindful of your lives and honor. It would have been most consonant to the state of the times, and to the regard you owed to our interests, if, considering their dissensions as beneficial to Islâm, you had [secretly] encouraged [or excited] the Musulmans [in their proceedings], while you [apparently] looked on as [unconcerned] spectators, instead of interposing with such an extraordinary recommen­dation* as you did; and which was, indeed, altogether, unworthy of your understandings.* When the Nazarenes seized upon hundreds of Musulman women, where was the zeal for the support [or honour] of Islamism, which you are now so desirous of manifesting there?

For the future, it will be proper that you should never take any share in their domestic concerns, but attend [exclusively] to whatever may promote the success of our affairs. Let the fire of discord, therefore, be again kindled amongst them, to the end that they may, in this manner, waste [their strength upon] each other.


If I understand the foregoing letter rightly (of which, however, I must confess myself to have some doubts) the Sultan’s meaning was, that both his own personal interests, and those of Islâmism, would have been better promoted, by a continuance of the feuds and animosities which seem to have arisen between the Musulman and Hindoo inhabitants of Poonah, in consequence, apparently, of some female intrigue, than by the interposition of the envoys; which, if it succeeded, would have the effect of terminating the disputes in question. Instead of this, he would have had his agents secretly foment and encourage them, and therefore concludes his dispatch, by broadly desiring them “to rekindle the fire “of discord,” in order that his enemies may be consumed therein: that is to say, to measure back the false steps they had taken, and let the quarrel which had sprung up take its natural course. At the same time, he seems to have thought, that the interference of the envoys, besides being impolitic, was indecorous and presumptuous, as encroaching on the rights of an independent state. “It is a “domestic difference, (says he) concerning only the inhabitants of their own “country.”

It is uncertain to what particular transaction the Sultan alludes, in the passage mentioning the Nazarenes, or English. The violence, however, here imputed to them, is mentioned on other occasions, as well as the present.