TWENTY-TWO miles north-west of Kotâ lies Bundi, the capital of the Rajput state of the same name. It is said to have been founded in 1341 by Rao Deva, a Hârâ Râjput, who took the Bandu valley from the aboriginal Minas who possessed it, ruthlessly slaughtering its rude inhabitants. It is picturesquely situated in a small valley or basin nearly surrounded by rocky hills, and has a fine hill-fort. The hill of the fort is about two miles long and one in breadth, with very pretty valleys on its north and south sides, each with its small stream, across which bands are thrown to form two artificial lakes, between which the town is situated. The northern one is about a mile and a half long, and at the upper end of it are the Mahâsalîs or cenotaphs of the Royal family of Bundi.

The principal bazaar is a very picturesque street, and leads directly to the palace gate. The view embraces a part of this street and a portion of the palace, but the latter is better seen from other points, whence it appears lying higher up on the hill. The whole building, says Tod, "is an aggregate of palaces, each having the name of its founder; and yet the whole so well harmonizes, and the character of the architecture is so uniform, that its breaks or fantasies appear only to arise from the peculiarity of the position, and serve to diversify its beauties. The Chattrmehal, or that built by Râja Chattra Sâl (1652—165S), is the most extensive and most modern addition. It has two noble halls, supported by double ranges of columns of serpentine." Mr. Fergusson characterises it as "a fine specimen of an Indian palace, and though it aims at no architectural display, and is merely an aggregation of different buildings grouped together, without the smallest attempt at regularity or effect, it produces a far more pleasing combination of forms than usually arises from more studied designs; and when seen at a little distance, lying on the side of a hill rising from its lakes, and crowned by the hill-fort, it is as pleasing a piece of architectural scenery as I have seen anywhere, even in India, where such effects are common.”1

  • 1. Consult Tod's Annals, vol. ii. pp. 460—504, 692—699 (Madras ed. vol. ii. pp. 424—465, 634—641) ; Fergusson's Pict. Illust. p. 53; Jour. Asiat. Soc. Beng. vol. ii. (1833), p. 400 ; Broughton's Letters from a Maratta Camp, p. 165 ; Duff’s Hist. of Marathas, vol. iii. pp. 267, 311; Sutherland’s Sketches of the Relations between the British and the Native States (2nd ed. Calcutta, 1837), pp. 87—97; Capt. Burton's Narr. of the Boondee Principality; Asiat. Resear. vol. vi. p. 66 ; Briggs' Ferishta, vol. ii. p. 233; &c.