" the opinion of Dickens's judge that 'what the soldier said was not evidence' "
This is a quote from The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens, originally published in 20 monthly parts from April 1836-November 1837. The picture shows the original cover of the book.
" as a hyena loped past "
A hyena is a carnivorous animal found in parts of Africa and Asia. They are hunters and scavengers, with digestive systems specially adapated to enable them to eat every part of their prey, including the bones. They have a laughter-like call which has given them the nickname 'laughing hyenas'.
" like Mercutio's it was enough "
Mercutio appears in Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. Mercutio is a lively, witty character who is a friend of Romeo's. "Like Mercutio's it was enough" refers to the fatal stab wound Mercutio received from Juliet's cousin Tybalt.
" the veiled Tuaregs of the Sahara "
The Tuareg are a nomadic Berber group of the Sahara. The men traditionally wear the veil, though the women do not. The veil usually covers the face apart from the eyes and nose - covering the face in this way is believed to ward off evil spirits.
" the reign of Krishna Deva Raya "
Krishna Deva Raya was Emperor of the Vijayanagara Empire. During his rule he was responsible for several great military successes. His reign is also regarded as the Golden Age of Telugu literature. He was considered to be a powerful and just ruler who cared about the welfare of his people.