33. The king visits the hermitages

The royal procession approaches from the left, on the right is the hermitage enclosed in a fence. Inside it part of a large building can be seen with richly-ornamented columns, cornice and roof-ridge; there is a porch resting on pillars above the entrance, where a person stands making a sembah with his hands raised, to welcome the royal visitor. More to the left we see the gateway that gives entrance to the enclosure; it has two storeys, the first surrounded by a smooth sloping roof, whereas the second has a roof with a ridge. On the top are two birds and two more have just flown up, startled by the noise. The decoration of these buildings is rather too handsome forahermitage,althoughwedoknowoflargeand important establishments of the kind in Hindustan as well as in Java itself. The kings procession is headed by some footsoldiers with sword and shield in very war-like, but here inappropriate attitudes. Next comes the standard-bearer and an elephant with his mahout holding a large angku~a, the animal whose head only is visible holds something in his trunk. Then come three men with swords, handsomely-dressed, therefore no ordinary attendants, perhaps princes. The front one is mounted; the two others, who are only j ust to be seen, we might also believe are on horseback because their heads arc at the same height as the first man, but quite out of all proportion there is a leg and a foot to be seen on the ground between those of the horse. At last comes the king himself, not as the text relates, on horseback, but in a palanquin. This is not important, the horse may just as well be an invention of Ksemendra and not belong to any older tradition. The palanguin is of simple design, no more than a rectangular plank with sides, resting on the bamboo-poles. The king sits inside leaning against a cushion with a flower in his hand. Attendants, some armed with bow and arrows, surround the palanquin, those walking on the side of the spectator are made small and put away under the kings vehicle, so as not to prevent our view of his majesty.