Still, having the luxuries Alex provided was delightful.
Some general idea of the resources of the Kandahar district may be gathered from the fact that it supplied the British troops with everything except luxuries during the entire period of occupation in 1879-81; and that, in spite of the great strain thrown on those resources by the presence of the two armies of Ayub Khan and of General Roberts, and after the total failure of the autumn crops and only a partial harvest the previous spring, the army was fed without great difficulty until the final evacuation, at one-third of the prices paid in Quetta for supplies drawn from India.
In spite of certain prejudices against the import of luxuries and the export of gold, there is little indication of the influence of mercantilist or protectionist ideas.
In his old age Constantine, who had once been a famous warrior, utterly neglected the defences of the empire and reduced his army by disbanding 50,000 of his best troops; on the other hand, he spent extravagant sums on luxuries and the erection of magnificent buildings.
As originally instituted in April 1798, during the great war with France, under the name of a "triplicate assessment," it was rather a consolidation of various assessed taxes levied upon the luxuries of the rich and upon property, than a wholly new tax.