BAYADÈRE, s. A Hindu dancing-girl. The word is especially used by French writers, from whom it has been sometimes borrowed as if it were a genuine Indian word, particularly characteristic of the persons in question. The word is in fact only a Gallicized form of the Portuguese bailadeira, from bailar, to dance. Some 50 to 60 years ago there was a famous ballet called Le dieu et la bayadère, and under this title Punch made one of the most famous hits of his early days by presenting a cartoon of Lord Ellenborough as the Bayadère dancing before the idol of Somnath; [also see DANCING-GIRL].

1513.—“There also came to the ground many dancing women (molheres bailadeiras) with their instruments of music, who make their living by that business, and these danced and sang all the time of the banquet…”—Correa, ii. 364.

1526.—“XLVII. The dancers and danceresses (bayladores e bayladeiras) who come to perform at a village shall first go and perform at the house of the principal man of the village” (Gancar, see GAUM).—Foral de usos costumes dos Gancares e Lavradores de esta Itha de Goa, in Arch. Port. Or., fascic. 5, 132.

1598.—“The heathenish whore called Balliadera, who is a dancer.”—Linschoten, 74; [Hak. Soc. i. 264].

1599.—“In hâc icone primum proponitur Inda Balliadera, id est saltatrix, quae in publicis ludis aliisque solennitatibus saltando spectaculum exhibet.”—De Bry, Text to pl. xii. in vol. ii. (also see p. 90, and vol. vii. 26), etc.

[c. 1676.—“All the Baladines of Gombroon were present to dance in their own manner according to custom.”—Tavernier, ed. Ball, ii. 335.]

1782.—“Surate est renommé par ses Bayadères, dont le véritable nom est Dérédassi: celui de Bayadères que nous leur donnons, vient du mot Balladeiras, qui signifie en Portugais Danseuses.”—Sonnerat, i. 7.

1794.—“The name of Balliadere, we never heard applied to the dancing girls; or saw but in Raynal, and ‘War in Asia, by an Officer of Colonel Baillie’s Detachment;’ it is a corrupt Portuguese word.”—Moor’s Narrative of Little’s Detachment, 356.

1825.—“This was the first specimen I had seen of the southern Bayadère, who differ considerably from the nâch girls of northern India, being all in the service of different temples, for which they are purchased young.”—Heber, ii. 180.

c. 1836.—“On one occasion a rumour reached London that a great success had been achieved in Paris by the performance of a set of Hindoo dancers, called Les Bayadères, who were supposed to be priestesses of a certain sect, and the London theatrical managers were at once on the qui vive to secure the new attraction…My father had concluded the arrangement with the Bayadères before his brother managers arrived in Paris. Shortly afterwards, the Hindoo priestesses appeared at the Adelphi. They were utterly uninteresting, wholly unattractive. My father lost £2000 by the speculation; and in the family they were known as the ‘Buy-em-dears’ ever after.”—Edmund Yates, Recollections, i. 29, 30 (1884).

BAYPARREE, BEOPARRY, s. H. bepärï, and byopärï (from Skt. vyäpärin); a trader, and especially a petty trader or dealer.

A friend long engaged in business in Calcutta (Mr J. F. Ogilvy, of Gillanders & Co.) communicates a letter from an intelligent Bengalee gentleman, illustrating the course of trade in country produce before it reaches the hands of the European shipper:

1878.—“…the enhanced rates…do not practically benefit the producer in a marked, or even in a corresponding degree; for the lion’s share goes into the pockets of certain intermediate classes, who are the growth of the above system of business.

“Following the course of trade as it flows into Calcutta, we find that between the cultivators and the exporter these are: 1st. The Bepparree, or petty trader; 2nd. The Aurut- dar;1 and 3rd. The Mahajun, interested in the Calcutta trade. As soon as the crops are cut, Bepparree appears upon the scene; he visits village after village, and goes from homestead to homestead, buying there, or at the village marts, from the ryots; he then takes his purchases to the Aurut-dar, who is stationed at a centre of trade, and to whom he is perhaps under advances, and from the Aurut-dar the Calcutta Mahajun obtains his supplies…for eventual despatch to the capital. There is also a fourth class of dealers called Phoreas, who buy from the Mahajun and sell to the European exporter. Thus, between the cultivator and the shipper there are so many middlemen, whose participation in the trade involves a multiplication of profits, which goes a great way towards enhancing the price of commodities before they reach the shipper’s hands.”—Letter from Baboo Nobokissin Ghose. [Similar details for Northern India will be found in Hoey, Mon. Trade and Manufactures of Lucknow, 59 seqq.]

BAZAAR, s. H. &c. From P. bäzär, a permanent market or street of shops. The word has spread westward into Arabic, Turkish, and, in special senses, into European languages, and eastward into India, where

  By PanEris using Melati.

Previous chapter Back Home Email this Search Discuss Bookmark Next chapter/page
Copyright: All texts on Bibliomania are © Ltd, and may not be reproduced in any form without our written permission.
See our FAQ for more details.