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Page:Provincial geographies of India (Volume 1).djvu/355

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CITIES

Agra and Lahore were the two capitals of the Empire. Lahore lay on the route to Kabul and Kashmir, and it was essential both to the power and to the pleasures of the Emperors that it should be strongly held and united to Delhi and Agra by a Royal or Bddshdhi Road. The City and the Suburbs in the reign of Shahjahan probably covered three or four times the area occupied by the town in the days of Sikh rule. All round the city are evidences of its former greatness in ruined walls and domes.

The Civil Station.— The Anarkali gardens and the buildings near them mark the site of the first Civil Station. John Lawrence's house, now owned by the Raja of Punch, is beyond the Chauburji on the Multan Road. The Civil Lines have stretched far to the south-east in the direction of the Cantonment, which till lately took its name from the tomb of Mian Mir, Jahangir's spiritual master. The soil is poor and arid. Formerly the roads were lined with dusty tamarisks. But of late better trees have been planted, and the Mall is now quite a fine thoroughfare. The Lawrence Hall Gardens and the grounds of Government House show what can be done to produce beauty out of a bad soil when there is no lack of water. There is little to praise in the architecture or statuary of modern Lahore. The marble canopy over Queen Victoria's statue is however a good piece of work. Of the two cathedrals the Roman Catholic is the better building. The Montgomery Hall with the smaller Lawrence Hall attached, a fine structure in a good position in the public gardens, is the centre of European social life in Lahore. Government House is close by, on the opposite side of the Mall. Its core, now a unique and beautiful dining-room with domed roof and modern oriental decoration, is the tomb of Muhammad Kasim Khan, a cousin of Akbar. Jamadar Khushal Singh, a well-known man in Ranjit Singh's reign, built a house round the tomb. After annexation, Henry