The bloody and gorgeous history of India has never yet been written and will not be written for some time.
There has never been, in fact, a single India any more than there has ever been a single Europe.
Countless peoples and cultures have fought here for their lives. New conquerors raged interminably out of the north
and west, exterminated nations and cities, and themselves vanished into the boiling pool of this humanity.
Few of their stories were written down, and when they were the next conquerors destroyed the record.
Diggers in the west and north and east are today discovering under the ground the glories of totally forgotten
civilizations that rivals Egypt and Sumeria 3,000 years ago. Above ground, some more recent magnificences remain.
Two are shown on this page, one from the east and one from the north country of the Rajputs.
There are thousands more, all different from one another. They are as often the work of slave peoples as of
conquerors. All have a quality of strangeness, sometimes morbid but always incomprehensible to the West.
of the dry Indian plain is done by a camel tamping in a circle, revolving a gear wheel (background) which in turn revolves bucket wheel
(left). By building a vast network of canals and damns, British ended famines in India, raised total of irrigated land from 4,500,000
acres in 1879 to 32,000,000 today. Rich Indians who want to be honored now bequeath a well to their village.
is one of the first crucial signs of civilization.
It first appeared in western India before 3000 B.C.
This carved stone wheel of the Brahman sun god's chariot on the Black Pagoda was built at Kanarak in Orissa 700 years ago, when a Moslem conqueror
from Persia had overrun all the Indian plain.
Nearby is the famous temple of Jaganath, or Juggernaut, at Puri.
The 120-ft. tower of Kanarak has been called "the most richly ornamental building in the whole world."
It is covered with antic human figures, horses, elephants and lions.
got this imposing monument near Delhi in the north-central plain of the fighting Hindu Rajputs.
The two perforated walled circles are to mark the rise and decline of the stars.
The photograph is taken from an immense sundial whose upright is 56 ft. high.
All this was built by the great mathematician and astronomer, Maharaja Jai Singh of Jaipur, in about 1725.
These Rajput Hindu princes were so afraid of their Moslem overlords that they covered their most
glorious wall carvings with stucco, to avoid shaming Moslem art.
in Delhi is Maya Mani Chatterji, who goes through the artificial hand-posturing of the dance of the cowherds' daughters (Gopis) to
seduce Lord Krishna, one of the Hindu gods. Maya has danced in London. This is very civilized, upper-class Indian dancing.
is Rukmini Devi, 33, who is trying to revive the South India dance of Bharata-Natya, which had become déclassé because temple prostitutes
used to dance it. Dance represents very spiritual emotions of the gods. She thinks Bharata-Natya will revive India.
of the old invading armies were supposedly the ancestors of these Lombani women. They are laboring women who carry head loads of dirt in road
construction, but they always wear these bone, ivory and shell bangles. They are the gypsies of India.
with eyes like a wood mouse carries firewood in the northern valley of Kashmir.
As in most of India, this child began to work hard as soon as she could toddle.
The next big event in her life will be to be married off in another few years.
Note deodars in the background.
reads on the campus of the Sacred Heart Convent at Lahore in the central Punjab.
She is upper-class and wears a native Indian sari.
In all India, there are 31 arts colleges for women, eight training colleges and one medical college.
But co-education is common.
AN INDIAN ARMY
fought and lost at Singapore. The bearded Sikhs shown here were among the approximately 50,000 Indian troops who participated in that campaign.
Among the toughest fighters from India, they worship a sacred book and hold to five kakkars: uncut hair, short drawers, iron bangle, wooden
comb and short sword. Every man carries the proud surname Singh, meaning lion. But Hindus are a minority in the Indian Army, its great backlog of
fighting men being composed of Moslems from the Punjab and the Northwest Frontier Province.
in Bombay, barely out of range of Jap Army bombers, induce this Indian girl to leap into a blanket held by fellow wardens, male and female.
Probably no country has been caught so short by the threat of war as India, which had felt that any possible war cloud could only blow up from
the west, whence all India's invasions have come. Instead, it now finds Japan pounding on the eastern gates of Burma.
The aroused community spirit of the Indians has so far taken such forms as that above, which somehow suggests an Indian fakir's rope trick.