Bernier, François, Travels in the Mogul Empire A.D. 1656-1668

(Westminster, Eng. :  Constable,  1891.)



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sophical studies in the afternoon than avoid devoting
the morning to his weighty duties as Secretary of State
for Foreign Affairs and Grand Master of the Horse.
Astronomy, geography, and anatomy are his favourite
pursuits, and he reads with avidity the works of Gassendy
and Descartes.^ I shall commence my journey this very
night, after having finally arranged all my affairs, and
supplied myself with much the same necessaries as if I
were a cavalry officer of rank. As my pay is one hundred
and fifty crowns per month, I am expected to keep two
good Turkoman horses, and I also take with me a power¬
ful Persian camel and driver, a groom for my horses, a
cook and a servant to go before my horse with a flagon
of water in his hand, according to the custom of the
country. I am also provided with every useful article,
such as a tent of moderate size, a carpet, a portable
bed ^ made of four very strong but light canes, a pillow,
a couple of coverlets, one of which, twice doubled, serves
for a mattress, a sonfraf' or round leathern table-cloth
used at meals, some few napkins of dyed cloth, three
small bags with culinary utensils which are all placed
in a large bag, and this bag is again carried in a
very capacious and strong double sack or net made of
leathern thongs. This double sack likewise contains the
provisions, linen, and wearing apparel, both of master and
servants. I have taken care to lay in a stock of excellent
rice for five or six days' consumption, of sweet biscuits
flavoured with anise, of limes and sugar. Nor have I
forgotten a linen bag with its small iron hook for the
purpose of suspending and draining days, or curds;
nothing being considered so refreshing in this country as

! See p. 324.

2 In the original, lit cl. sangles, a camp-bed with ordinary webbing or
tape {newar in Hindostanee), in common use at the present day, most
useful for travelling in Kashmir.

^ Sufra, sometimes made of cotton chintz. Leather ones, of the
sambhur deer-skins are still made in the Gorakhpur district of North¬
ern India,

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