Bass drums were booming, snare drums were rattling, above them sounded the shrill notes of the bugles. There was the rumble of big-wheeled wagons, now and then an elephant trumpeted or a lion gave a hungry roar. Gay banners fluttered, glistening spears flashed with points of light, gaily attired women and men sat on the backs of swaying, ugly camels, or galloped on mettlesome steeds. And looking at it all was a vast throng of eager-eyed men, women and children. It was the opening performance of the circus.