Page:Picturesque Nepal.djvu/193

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.

destroy my enemies." The bodies of the slain were heaped up together, without reference to rank, and nearly filled the quadrangle surrounding the Kot. But many years have elapsed sinee these days of gloom, and it is a different scene that is being enacted on this same site to-day, although still a bloody and barbaric one. For it is the custom with the Nepalis to devote the ninth day of the Durga Puja to the worship of the armaments of war, and this is performed by sacrificing to the goddess an enormous number of buffaloes. Every regimental officer is expected to present a victim (the higher officers giving two or three) as an offering to the colours of his own corps, so that at some of the army headquarters, notably at the Kot, these animals are slaughtered by the thousand.

From out of the crowded street we enter a narrow passage, and, passing through a doorway, a wild scene greets the eye. The sacrificial portion of the ceremony is nearly over, but what remains is a curious combination of a battlefield and a shambles. The participants in the festival are grouped around the