He received formal leave of absence in January 1908, when he received the title of president of the board of customs. Both the Chinese and the British governments from time to time conferred honours upon Sir Robert Hart.
One of these myths is the famous story of Ishtar's descent to Irkalla or Aralu, as the lower world was called, and her reception by her sister who presides over it; the other is the story of Nergal's offence against Ereshkigal, his banishment to the kingdom controlled by the goddess and the reconciliation between Nergal and Ereshkigal through the latter's offer to have Nergal share the honours of the rule over Irkalla.
Refusing all honours and recompense, he prepared to return to Italy upon receiving news of the incipient revolutionary movement.
In India, too, a dead person treated with funeral honours becomes a guardian spirit - if neglected, a tormenting demon.