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tantly and slowly than in Europe, and where there is very little pleasure in activity of any kind for its own sake. It is absurd to suppose that the immense task of Indian government can be accomplished by the handful of Englishmen there, without the greatest strain upon their individual energies. Not only have they to do all the ordinary work of a European Governmentthey have also themselves to fill the greater number of judicial, revenue, and educational appointments, to construct public works, to direct the police, to accomplish great part of the work of governing which, in this country, is performed by hundreds of thousands of county gentlemen and city magnates; and, over and above all that, it is expected that they shall save the Indian people from the consequences of famine, and be able to show every year that they have elevated that people in the scale of humanity. The supervision of all this arduous labour-the performance of a certain share of its details-the sitting in judgment on numerous appeal cases of the most various and complicated kind-the management of our relationships with great native States both within and without the Indian peninsula the settlement of important questions of the most difficult kind-and by far the greater share of the immense responsibility of governing an alien empire of nearly two hundred millions of people,-all this, and much more, falls upon the Supreme Government, whether it be located at Calcutta or at Simla; and to compel it to remain nearly all the year in the unhealthy delta of the Ganges, would be to burden it with a good deal more than the straw which breaks the camel's back.

It is obvious at Simla that the Supreme Government has selected for its summer residence about the best


place to be found among the outer Himálaya. duties of the Government of India will not allow that Government to bury itself in the interior of the great mountains, where much more healthy spots are to be found, or to select any place of residence far distant from railway communication. As it is, the Viceroy,

with his staff, and all the members of Council, and the secretaries to Government, could be at Ambála, on the great railway-line, in about twelve hours after leaving Simla, or even less on a push; and fifty hours by rail would take them to Calcutta, or sixty hours to Bombay. They are in close proximity to the Panjáb, and have the railway from Ambála to Lahore and Múltan, with steamers from the latter place down the Indus to its mouth or to Kotri, from whence there is a short line of railway to the port of Karáchi. Delhi, Agra, and all the great cities of the north-west are within easy reach. They are in much closer proximity to any cities and districts likely to be dangerous than they would be at Calcutta, and are also much nearer to the places which give rise to difficult questions of policy. In old times it was different; but now, with the rail and telegraph going over the land, it is of little importance in which of a hundred places the Indian Government may be situated; but it is of great importance that its members should not be unnecessarily exposed to the depressing and destroying influence of the Indian hot season and rains. It only remains to remove the headquarters of Government from Calcutta to some more central position, such as Agra or Allahabad; and I fancy only financial considerations stand in the way of that being done, for it would involve the erection of a number of new Government buildings.

Society everywhere in India labours under very great disadvantages, and varies very much according to the character of its ever-changing leaders. Sir Emerson Tennent has observed that it is "unhappily the tendency of small sections of society to decompose when separated from the great vital mass, as pools stagnate and putrefy when cut off from the invigorating flow of the sea ;" and he adds that the process is variable, so that a colonial society which is repulsive to-day may be attractive to-morrow, or a contrary change may take place with one or two departures or new arrivals. The same holds good in India; and though Indian society can boast of some superiority to colonial (a superiority which is amusingly asserted on board mailsteamers), it has very great defects of its own, and in certain circumstances degenerates into the intolerable. One tendency of life in India is to create an immense amount of conceit, and to make men assume airs of superiority, not because of any superiority of mind or character, or on account of great services rendered to the State, but simply because long residence in the country, or in some particular district of it, has given them high appointments, or the advantage as regards local knowledge. Then, though military society has many good points, "discipline must be observed;" and it was in perfect good faith, and expressing his own opinion as well as that which he believed to be generally entertained, that an old Indian remarked to me, "We don't think much of any one's opinions here until he is a lieutenant-colonel at least." Of course in all countries opinions are often measured by the position of the spokesman; but in Europe that is not so much the case as in India, and in our happier climes

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it is easy to shun the society of snobs, whether social or intellectual, without becoming a social pariah. This social tendency is not corrected, but developed rather than otherwise, by a close bureaucracy such as the Indian Civil Service-and there is no other element in the community sufficiently strong to correct it; while it is almost justified by the extraordinary effect India has in rapidly producing intense conceit and insufferable presumption among Europeans of a low order of mind and character, whatever classes of the community they may belong to. Nothing struck me more in that country than the contrast between its elevating and even ennobling effects on those Europeans whose minds were above a certain level, and its exactly contrary effects on almost all those who were below that level. What, then, Indian society has specially to struggle against are two apparently opposite tendencies,—a slavish respect for mere position, and for exceptional power and knowledge in particular directions; and, on the other hand, excessive individual conceit and presumption. But these evil tendencies (which, curiously enough, belong also to the Indian native character) are not opposed in any such way as to counteract each other. On the contrary, they are apt to foster and inflame each other; because the old Indian justly sees that he has opposed to him an immense deal of ignorant presumption which ought to be severely repressed, while the democrat and the griffin instinctively feel that they are oppressed by an amount of tyrannical old-fogyism which would not be allowed to exist in any other country. A great deal of harm arises, also, from the scarcity of those little agreeable details of life which make the time pass pleasantly in

this country. Here we trouble ourselves little about our neighbours; but in India if a man is not friendly with his neighbour, or even if he does not know him, he is apt to begin hating him. The more acute English travellers see a little of this state of matters; but everything is made as pleasant as possible to travellers in India with good introductions; and it is necessary to reside for some time in the country in order to see these defects, and to understand what an absolute nonentity a man is in himself, and how entirely his importance, his accomplishments, his character, his value, and his very raison d'être, depend on the appointment which he holds. I do not at all wonder at that old sergeant in a very out-of-the-way place in the jungle, who, on being asked what he did there, answered, with some surprise, "Why, sir, I fills the sitivation." In Anglo-India you not only fill the situation, it is the situation that fills you, and makes you what you are, and without which you would immediately collapse.

These observations are necessary to explain the great superiority of Simla society, when I knew it, over the society to be found in nearly all other places in India. That superiority would not be accounted for merely by the number of high officers collected there whom a process of selection had brought to the front. In a community such as that of India, the two strong evil tendencies which I have just noticed as specially existing there, are most effectually kept in check when the highest appointments are held by men of high intellect and good disposition, using the latter phrase so as to exclude alike the pharisee and the prodigal. Whenever the leaders of society are essentially commonplace men,

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