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Page 503. The Meeting.

The Bharat-Miláp or meeting with Bharat, is the closing scene of the dramatic representation of Ráma's great victory and triumphant return which takes place annually in October in many of the cities of Northern India. The Rám-Lalá or Play of Ráma, as the great drama is called, is performed in the open air and lasts with one day's break through fifteen successive days. At Benares there are three nearly simultaneous performances, one provided by H. H. the Maharajah of Benares near his palace at Ramnaggur, one by H. H. the Maharajah of Vizianagram near the Missionary settlement at Sigra and at other places in the city, and one by the leading gentry of the city at Chowká Ghát near the College. The scene especially on the great day when the brothers meet is most interesting: the procession of elephants with their gorgeous howdahs of silver and gold and their magnificently dressed riders with priceless jewels sparkling in their turbans, the enthusiasm of the thousands of spectators who fill the streets and squares, the balconies and the housetops, the flowers that are rained down upon the advancing car, the wild music, the shouting and the joy, make an impression that is not easily forgotten.

Still on his head, well trained in lore
Of duty, Ráma's shoes he bore.

Ráma's shoes are here regarded as the emblems of royalty or possession. We may compare the Hebrew "Over Edom will I cast forth my shoe." A curiously similar passage occurs in LYSCHANDER'S Chronicon Greenlandiæ Rhythmicon:

"Han sendte til Irland sin skiden skoe,
Og böd den Konge. Som der monne boe,
Han skulde dem hæderlig bære
Pan Juuledag i sin kongelig Pragt,
Og kjende han havde sit Rige og Magt
Af Norges og Quernes Herre."

He sent to Ireland his dirty shoes,
And commanded the king who lived there
To wear them with honour
On Christmas Day in his royal state,
And to own that he had his kingdom and power
From the Lord of Norway and the Isles.
Notes & Queries, March 30, 1872.