At Last, Descending Lower And
Lower, She Disappeared Completely.
And suddenly, almost without interval between darkness and light,
the red-hot globe, emerging on the opposite side from under the
cape, leant his golden chin on the lower rocks of the island and
seemed to stop for a while, as if examining us.
Then, with one
powerful effort, the torch of day rose high over the sea and
gloriously proceeded on its path, including in one mighty fiery
embrace the blue waters of the bay, the shore and the islands with
their rocks and cocoanut forests. His golden rays fell upon a
crowd of Parsees, his rightful worshippers, who stood on shore
raising their arms towards the mighty "Eye of Ormuzd." The sight
was so impressive that everyone on deck became silent for a moment,
even a red-nosed old sailor, who was busy quite close to us over
the cable, stopped working, and, clearing his throat, nodded at the sun.
Moving slowly and cautiously along the charming but
treacherous bay, we had plenty of time to admire the picture
around us. On the right was a group of islands with Gharipuri or
Elephanta, with its ancient temple, at their head. Gharipuri
translated means "the town of caves" according to the Orientalists,
and "the town of purification" according to the native Sanskrit
scholars. This temple, cut out by an unknown hand in the very
heart of a rock resembling porphyry, is a true apple of discord
amongst the archaeologists, of whom none can as yet fix, even
approximately, its antiquity.
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