tuque /tūk/ n Canadian English, var. toque [19th c. Canadian French, from the French toque, from the Basque tauka] 1 A close-fitting knitted cap, often with a long tapering end or tassel or pompom. 2 fig Something quintessentially Canadian.
souq /sūk/ n from the Arabic سوق var. souk 1 An open-air marketplace. 2 fig A central meeting place for the circulation of news and ideas.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Taj Mahal

If the traveller considers himself a pilgrim in Agra then he is assured of joining one of the grandest pilgrimages he’s ever known, for no sooner does he enter the city beneath the government’s propitious welcome sign, beckoning him to the splendor within, than he is joined by a throng of thousands, maybe tens of thousands or—as they say—many lakhs of fellow pilgrims surging inward to the great monument of the world.

And as he enters the mighty gates, and as he lifts his eyes to behold that which is so awesome, the traveller knows he will remember this moment for his mind’s eternity, because it has been for him thus prescribed: Every eye before his to behold the awe of the monument has fallen shut in humility; every description writ before his to express the wonder that is the monument has been ill-formed; every stone kicked aside on the traveller’s road to the monument has done it more honour than words or pictures ever can.

All that stands before the traveller is etched upon his mind and will not leave him. In lines and in shadows, in tones and in textures, in memories and in glimmering white marble, the great monument says everything the traveller must know. The monument defines itself by what it reveals to each traveller. This is the heart of its awe.

{Taj Mahal Photo Gallery}

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