a. GOUR, s. H. gaur, gauri gae, (but not in the dictionaries), [Platts gives gaur, Skt. gaura, ‘white, yellowish, reddish, pale red’]. The great wild ox, Gavaeus Gaurus, Jerd.; [Bos gaurus, Blanford (Mammalia), 484 seq.], the same as the Bison (q.v.). [The classical account of the animal will be found in Forsyth, Highlands of Central India, ed. 1889, pp. 109 seqq.]

1806.—“They erect strong fences, but the buffaloes generally break them down.…They are far larger than common buffaloes. There is an account of a similar kind called the Gore; one distinction between it and the buffalo is the length of the hoof.”—Elphinstone, in Life, i. 156.

b. GOUR, s. Properly Can. gaud, gaur, gauda. The head man of a village in the Canarese-speaking country; either as corresponding to patel, or to the Zemindar of Bengal. [See F. Buchanan, Mysore, i. 268; Rice, Mysore, i. 579.] c. 1800.—“Every Tehsildary is farmed out in villages to the Gours or head- men.”—In Munro’s Life, iii. 92.

c. GOUR, n.p. Gaur, the name of a medieval capital of Bengal, which lay immediately south of the modern civil station of Malda, and the traces of which, with occasional Mahommedan buildings, extend over an immense area, chiefly covered with jungle.’ The name is a form of the ancient Gauda, meaning, it is believed, ‘the country of sugar,’ a name applied to a large part of Bengal, and specifically to the portion where those remains lie. It was the residence of a Hindu dynasty, the Senas, at the time of the early Mahommedan invasions, and was popularly known as Lakhnaoti; but the reigning king had transferred his seat to Nadiya (70 m. above Calcutta) before the actual conquest of Bengal in the last years of the 12th century. Gaur was afterwards the residence of several Mussulman dynasties. [See Ravenshaw, Gaur, its Ruins and Inscriptions, 1878.]

1536.—“But Xercansor [ Shir Khan Sur, afterwards King of Hindustan as Shir Shah] after his success advanced along the river till he came before the city of Gouro to besiege it, and ordered a lodgment to be made in front of certain verandahs of the King’s Palace which looked upon the river; and as he was making his trenches certain Rumis who were resident in the city, desiring that the King should prize them highly (d’elles fizesse cabedal) as he did the Portuguese, offered their service to the King to go and prevent the enemy’s lodgment, saying that he should also send the Portuguese with them.”—Correa, iii. 720.

[1552.—“Caor.” See under BURRAM-POOTER.]

1553.—“The chief city of the Kingdom (of Bengala) is called Gouro. It is situated on the banks of the Ganges, and is said to be 3 of our leagues in length, and to contain 200,000 inhabitants. On the one side it has the river for its defence, and on the landward faces a wall of great height…the streets are so thronged with the concourse and traffic of people…that they cannot force their way past…a great part of the houses of this city are stately and well-wrought buildings.”—Barros, IV. ix. cap. 1.

1586.—“From Patanaw I went to Tanda which is in the land of the Gouren. It hath in times past been a kingdom, but is now subdued by Zelabdin Echebar…”—R. Fitch, in Hakluyt, ii. 389.

1683.—“I went to see ye famous Ruins of a great Citty and Pallace called [of] GOWRE…we spent 3½ hours in seeing ye ruines especially of the Pallace which has been…in my judgment considerably bigger and more beautifull than the Grand Seignor’s Seraglio at Constantinople or any other Pallace that I have seen in Europe.”—Hedges, Diary, May 16; [Hak. Soc. i. 88].

GOVERNOR’S STRAITS, n.p. This was the name applied by the Portuguese (Estreito do Gobernador) to the Straits of Singapore, i.e. the straits south of that island (or New Strait). The reason of the name is given in our first quotation. The Governor in question was the Spaniard Dom Joao da Silva.

1615.—“The Governor sailed from Manilha in March of this year with 10 galleons and 2 galleys.…Arriving at the Straits of Sincapur, * * * * and passing by a new strait which since has taken the name of Estreito do Governador, there his galleon grounded on the reef at the point of the strait, and was a little grazed by the top of it.”—Bocarro, 428.

1727.—“Between the small Carimon and Tanjong-bellong on the Continent, is the entrance of the Streights of Sincapure before mentioned, and also into the Streights of Governadore, the largest and easiest Passage into the China Seas.”—A. Hamilton, ii. 122.

1780.—“Directions for sailing

  By PanEris using Melati.

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