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are not crowded together as they are in Switzerland. Both

eye and mind are apt to be wearied among the Himálaya by the unbroken repetition of similar scenes during continuous and arduous travel, extending over days and weeks together; and one sorely misses Goethe's Ekschen, or the beautiful little corners of nature which satisfy the eye and mind alike. The picture is not sufficiently filled up in its detail, and the continuous repetition of the vast outlines is apt to become oppressive. The very immensity of the Himalaya prevents us from often beholding at a glance, as among the Alps, the wonderful contrast of green meadows, darker pines, green splintered glaciers, dark precipitous cliffs, blue distant hills, white slopes of snow and glittering icy summits. There are points in the Sutlej valley and in Kashmír where something like this is presented, and in a more overpowering manner than anywhere in Europe ; but months of difficult travel separate these two regions, and their beauty cannot be said to characterise the Himálaya generally. But what, even in Switzerland, would be great mountains, are here dwarfed into insignificant hills; and it requires some time for the eye to understand the immense Himalayan heights and depths. Some great rock, or the foot of some precipice, which is pointed out as our camping-place for the night, looks at first as if it were only a few hundred feet off, but after hours of arduous ascent, it seems almost as far off as ever.

The human element of the Western mountains is greatly wanting in those of the East; for though here and there a monastery like Kí, or a village like Dankar, may stand out picturesquely on the top of a hill, yet, for the most part, the dingy-coloured, flat-roofed Him

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álayan hamlets are not easily distinguishable from the rocks amid which they stand. The scattered chalets and sen huts of Switzerland are wholly wanting; and the European traveller misses the sometimes bright and comely faces of the peasantry of the Alps. I need scarcely say, also, that the more wonderful scenes of the Abode of Snow are far from being easily accessible, even when we are in the heart of the great mountains. And it can hardly be said that the cloudland of the Himalaya is so varied and gorgeous as that of the mountains of Europe, though the sky is of a deeper, more sword-like blue, and the heavens are much more brilliant at night.

But when all these admissions in favour of Switzerland are made, the Himalaya still remain unsurpassed, and even unapproached, as regards all the wilder and grander features of mountain scenery. There is nothing in the Alps which can afford even a faint idea of the savage desolation and appalling sublimity of many of the Himalayan scenes. Nowhere, also, bave the

. faces of the mountains been so scarred and riven by the nightly action of frost, and the mid-day floods from melting snow. In almost every valley we see places where whole peaks or sides of great mountains have very recently come shattering down; and the thoughtful traveller must feel that no power or knowledge he possesses can secure him against such a catastrophe, or prevent his bones being buried, so that there would be little likelihood of their release until the solid earth dissolves. And, though rare, there are sudden passages from these scenes of grandeur and savage desolation to almost tropical luxuriance, and more than tropical beauty, of organic nature. Such changes are startling

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and delightful, as in the passage from Dras into the upper Sind valley of Kashmír; while there is nothing finer in the world of vegetation than the great cedars, pines, and sycamores of many of the lower valleys.

It is needless to look in the Himalaya for a population so energetic and interesting as the Swiss, the Vaudois, or the Tyrolese; and these mountains have no women whose attractions at all approach those of the Italian side of the Alps from Lugano eastward, or of the valleys of the Engadine and the Tyrol. The Tibetan population is hardly abundant enough, or of sufficiently strong morale, for heroic or chivalric efforts, such as have been made by the ancient Greeks, the Swiss, the Waldenses, the Scotch Highlanders, and the mountaineers of some other parts of Europe and even of Asia. There are traditions enough among the Himálaya, but they usually relate either to the founding of monasteries, the destruction of invaders, like Zorawar Singh, whose forces had been previously dispersed by the troops of Lassa; or the death of travelling-parties in snowstorms, and from the avalanches of snow or rock. Nowhere, unless in the vast cloudy forms of Hindú mythology, do we meet with traditions of heroes or sages of whom it can be said, that

“Their spirits wrapt the dusky mountain ;

Their memory sparkled o'er the fountain ;
The meanest rill, the mightiest river,
Rolled mingling with their fame for ever.”

How easily Kashmír, with a European population, might have guarded its passes and preserved its independence! but it has scarcely ever made any attempt to do so; and the people of Tibet have not shown much more heroism, though they have had abundant

experience of fighting. The introduction of Búdhism into this elevated country was no doubt accomplished only by means of much self-sacrifice on the part of its early missionaries; but the shadowy forms of that age are most indistinctly seen, and have little attraction for the modern European. There is much of interest, however, in Lamaism and in the very peculiar customs of the Tibetan race; and I found it impossible to move among these people, especially in the more primitive parts of the country, without contracting a great liking for them, and admiration for their honesty, their patience, and their placidity of temper, in circumstances which must be trying for these virtues.

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CHAPTER XXIX.

THE HIMÁLAYA.

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EXTREME LENGTH OF HIMÁLAYA-"THE STONY GIRDLE OF THE EARTH

-"THE ROOF OF THE WORLD -MEANING OF 66 THE ABODE OF
SNOW "-LATIN, GREEK, AND SLAV COGNATES-ABODE OF THE
GODS-GERMAN HIMMEL-MILTON'S IMAUS-PLACE IN HINDÚ
MYTHOLOGY-PERSONIFIED AS SIVA-LINE OF PERPETUAL SNOW
IN HIMÁLAYA, ANDES, AND ALPS-DRYNESS OF ATMOSPHERE
EFFECT OF SOLAR RAYS-TEMPERATURE OF DAY AND NIGHT-
ALTITUDE AND LONGEVITY.

The Alps extend only for about 600 miles, counting their extreme length from Hungary to the Mediterranean, and their lateral extent is very narrow; but the Himálaya proper are at least 1500 miles in length. They are a great deal more if we add to them the Hindú Kúsh, which really constitute only a continua

a tion of the range ; and their breadth is so great that at some points it is more than half the entire length of the Alps. If, as Royle remarks, we consider the Hindú Kúsh to be a continuation, not so much of the Kuenlung, as of the Himálaya, then these latter extend from the equator (by their branches into the Malaya Peninsula) to 45 degrees of north latitude, and over 73 degrees of longitude. That is a gigantic space of the earth's surface, and affords a splendid base for the

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