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hills, and marks the path of the setting sun. It is called Mukartz Peak. According to Toda theology, over that peak must pass the souls of the Toda and his buffaloes on their way to the Paradise beyond. After death come the funerals-I say funerals for there are two, one of which, the Patcha Kêdu, follows immediately, while the more important and final, the Bara Kêdu, is postponed about a year.
Funeral Number 1 is conducted in this wise. The corpse is placed on a bier of branches and borne by four men to the funeral mund. Arrived here, a funeral pyre is constructed to burn the body. The dead man will require buffaloes to give him milk in Amnâr, and so two or three (formerly they slaughtered many more) are destined to be despatched, for that purpose, at the funeral. Round the neck of each of these ill-fated animals a little bell is hung, while the words, "Go with him," are shouted. The buffaloes are then driven near to the corpse, and a hole is dug in the turf hard by. Each of the mourners now takes up a handful of earth from this hole and flings it at the buffaloes, after which soil is flung three times on to the body with the words, "Let him go to the soil."
The corpse is now raised and its right hand lifted and made to touch the horns of the buffaloes, as though to claim possession of them. Fire is then kindled by the friction of two sticks together and the pyre ignited. Amidst the cries of the spectators, "We shall kill buffaloes for you. You are going to Amnâr. May you have milk to drink. May it be well with you," &c., the body is placed on the pyre, face downwards. Each buffalo is seized by two resolute men who interlace their arms round its neck, while others despatch it by a hasty blow with the butt-end of an axe on its crouched head. As each buffalo falls dead, the people caress its head and kiss its face, and then sit and wail bitterly. A lock of hair has been cut off the corpse, and this with the ashes of the body in a cloth is taken to the hut of the deceased to be kept carefully till the Bara Kêdu.
Funeral Number 2 is much more important and elaborate. A large concourse of people always gather together for the occasion. The Badagas, Khotas, and Kurumbas, three neighbouring hill-tribes, are present in force, and the Khotas are the musicians of the day. The funeral hut is ornamented with gold and silver coins, and often Rs. 500 or Rs. 600 (50%. or 70%.) are spent on the occasion. The proceedings commence with a dance of twenty or fifty Toda men, while the women are preparing the food for a feast, which forms the most important feature of the first day's proceedings.
On the second day the buffaloes destined to be slaughtered are all penned ready within an enclosure. The ashes of the dead, which have been carefully preserved for the occasion, are now laid in a cloth in the gateway of the cattle-pen, and a hole is dug in the front. From this, each relative of the deceased takes earth and flings it at the infuriated buffaloes, more soil being afterwards strewn on to the ashes of the departed.
Some young and active men now leap over the wall of the enclosure, and drop suddenly into the midst of the scared buffaloes. They seize the luckless animals and belabour them with sticks. The bars of the gateway being removed, the buffaloes are forced through one by one, and then hurried away to an open spot, called athari, to be killed. As each is felled, the cloth containing the ashes of the dead man is laid on the ground in such a position that the nose of the prostrate buffalo may give out life over its dead master's remains. Cries and wails are the order of the day. "Why did you leave us so soon?" "Have you gone to Amnâr?" "Are your buffaloes thriving?" "Are you suffering from fever? &c., &c. Alas! these poor souls have no ideas above the mundane.
On the following day the mantle containing the dead man's ashes is taken to the open space again, athari. Another buffalo is killed, blood being taken from an artery in its fore-leg and sprinkled on the charred remains of the dead man's skull. The mantle and its contents are then carefully burnt. The Khotas, who are not above buffalo-flesh, carry off the carcases as their share of the spoil.
(To be continued.)
Echoes from keswick.
HE Convention is over, and we are all scattering to our different parts of God's vineyard. What shall we take with us from Keswick? We were on a coach yesterday, when one of the party said, “Is there an echo in this place?" and the coachman replied, "Yes, a very good one," and taking out his horn he blew a blast; the sound went on and on, caught by the hills and handed on to their fellows. Again and again he struck a note which resounded from hill to hill, more feebly as it became more distant, but sweet and true to the last, and the
thought came into my mind, So shall it be with Keswick. We will take away the rememberance and pass on the echo.
What are the notes which have been sounded during this Convention? First of all," Entire Consecration." Though to us, as to Ezekiel, may have been granted the vision of God, and we may have yielded to the Spirit, yet further revelation may be necessary before we can, without "bitterness and heat of spirit," go anywhere or nowhere, be anything or nothing. Another note seems to follow naturally—“ Delight in the will of the Lord." Much has been said of the delight found in serving India's women, of the delightful stations, each one in turn being, if we may believe the workers, "the best in India; but the Keswick note has been to delight in His will, to be joyful in staying at home if He should wish it, and to be fearful of putting forward our own plans until we are sure that they are His. Another sweet note was, "Christ's inheritance in His people; the joy that we may give to Him, by our implicit childlike obedience, the only return we can make for all that He has suffered for us; for all the blessings which He daily showers down upon us.
No one can have been at this Convention without realising more fully the words, "I believe in the Communion of Saints." Tender allusions were made to some who during the last year had passed from the battlefield to the presence-chamber of the great King; representatives of many different regiments stood side by side in speaking of the battles of the Lord; all felt that the Church Militant and the Church Triumphant were only severed "till He come."
To those whose hearts are in the mission-field it was a deep joy to meet the "Students' Volunteer Missionary Union," a band of young people, men and women, from the colleges of the United Kingdom and America, who have dedicated their talents to the service of the King and have signed this declaration: "It is my purpose, if God permit, to become a foreign missionary." Oh, that this might be echoed from Keswick, and our Indian students from our missionary colleges might, under the inspiration of the Spirit of the Lord, sign the same declaration (omitting only the word foreign), so that East and West might be banded together in a new crusade, never to separate till the voice of the great multitude shall proclaim, "Hallelujah, for the Lord our God the Almighty reigneth." "The kingdom of the world is become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and He shall reign for ever and ever."
ANNIE J. EDgley.
OUTH INDIA and its Missions chiefly fill our Autumn Numbers; the present one, however, telling of our Mohammedan Mission in Madras, of a feast of ingathering in Chintadrepettah, and of the work generally in the Mysore, Bezwada, and Kummamett, is by no means complete. Miss E. L. Oxley, the superintendent of the C.E.Z.M.S. Hindu Mission in Madras, is at home, so many of her friends have heard from her own lips of the work to which she hopes to return' this autumn. The Misses Brandon, the superintendents of the Masulipatam Mission, are also on furlough. Miss Bassoe has written of the work she has superintended in their absence; but we hold over her letter as some excellent photographs illustrating it have arrived too late to be reproduced for September.
Miss A. M. Smith, the head of the Bangalore Mission, has kindly sent a plan of the C.E.Z.M.S. Gosha Hospital, now in course of erection; we only regret that the size of our page has made it necessary to so reduce the large drawing that the lettering is difficult to read (see p. 406); the fact that there is the promise of a veritable House of Mercy for the suffering women and girls will, however, be patent and clear. The word Gosha occurs so frequently that it may be well to explain that it has the same significance in South India as purdah, literally a curtain or veil, has in the North. Whether it qualifies a hospital, a wagon, or a woman, it tells of the seclusion of women of high caste which still prevails, even where Christian Missions are oldest.
HE scene is a South Indian prize-giving. Sparkling, expectant brown faces amid glittering jewellery, and a sprinkling of European and Eastern visitors listen as Miss E. L. Oxley, the superintendent of the Mission, tells what has been done amongst the Mohammedan girls during the year. How to fill up the surroundings so that English readers can appreciate the points she brings forward is a difficulty. Visitors to Madras from Europe, even though they may take only a superficial glance, can see the movement in South Indian ideas that underlies the possibility of Christian education amongst Islam's daughters. The Lady Commissioner of the Daily Graphic lately wrote to the Madras Times :-" During my stay in Madras, I heard regrets many and various that the education of the Mohammedan girls remained so far behind. It may, therefore, be encouraging to those who are carrying forward this work if I say that not only have I not found it done any more successfully elsewhere, but indeed it has not been so well in scheme or in result." Missionaries may deplore that "in this direction their progress is the slowest, and the outlook the least immediately hopeful," it is very certain they are not labouring in vain. We know how the iron heel of Mohammedanism has ground down women, and how such objections have been made to education as -Girls must not learn to read, or they would know too much; they must not write, or they would make mischief; they must not learn calisthenics, as that would be akin to dancing; above all, they must not learn of Christ the Saviour, for that might lead to their forsaking the faith of Islam for which, according to their creed, death is the penalty. But now even the fact that our missionaries make a point of letting it be thoroughly understood that their first object is distinctly missionary, does not deter the Mohammedans inviting Miss Oxley to open new schools.
Miss Oxley's report will be clearer if readers keep in mind that Madras is the third city of India, that it has absorbed twenty-three towns and villages, and that the chief parts are Blacktown, Triplicane, Vepery, Egmore, and Mylapore. The Lubbays, whom Miss Oxley mentions, are descendants of early immigrants from Arabia, who married Hindu wives.