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they do, his produce mnst have been 725 miles ; an enormity
«qual to his measure of the Indus.

In regard to the rivers of this province, I cannot pronounce

^'^ Straboy p. 717. There is an error m dred and twenty-five mtlefl. According to

the reading»1>ttt it seenu to indicate four thou- d'Anville's method, he must have read nine

sand four hundred or four thousand three hun- thousand stadia, equal to five hundred and

>dred stadia. siKty-two miles> in reality.

^" He inakes the whole gulph eleven hun- •*• Lib. vi. c. 25.

3 G

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any thing certain on their course inland, I trust to every tra-^
Veller for the stream he passes in his route, but there are great
difficulties in giving them the course found in their works, and
-which they most usually derive from the information of the na-
tives. The nature of the country will naturally produce tem-
porary torrents from every valley between the mountains ; but
how these are afterwards combined, and under what name they
reach the sea, must be dubious, till travelling shall be more safes-
and frequent than it is at present. Of the Darabin and Nabon
rivers we know nothing but their mouths. The Sitakus seem»
well arranged by d'Anville, as the stream that comes from
Giouar, and collects all the torrents in the district; but the
Kierazin is subject to all the difficulties which have been already

The Boshavir or Busheer river of Tlievenot is elucidated with
great attention in his route, but it falls into the sea just to the
north of Busheer, as d'Anville gives it : it is by Thevenot's ac-
count no ordinary stream. The Ab-Chirin of d'Anville, which
he brings in at the Guenowa of our charts, is not, as far as I
can judge, correct ; it seems to be the stream of Delem, the
Bri^ana of Arrian. Of the A'rosis more hereafter. Almost all
these streams Arrian calls Winter **' Torrents ; and, so far as
they all rise from the range of mountains inland, such they are :.
but the rains fall in this range, as far as can be collected from
the variety of materials before me, in April, May, and the early
part of June ; there is little rain in the Kermesir, or hot country
next the sea, and some years none at all. These circumstances^
seem to give a common characteristic to all these rivers, and tcK

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jqualify them with the name of Winter Torrents, though their
rise is in spring, and consequently Nearchus, who was upon
the coast in February before the rise -commences, speaks agreeably
to the nature of the country, when he mentions some of them as
too low and shallow to float even a Greek vessel in that season.
Nearchus has preserved likewise most admirably the general
features of tlie province, which he divides '** into three parts ;
that division which lies along the side of the gulph, he says, is
sandy, parched, and sterile"*, bearing little else but palm-trees,
which corresponds exactly with the Kermesu''**, and the ac-
counts of all our modern travellers ; but as you advance to th©
north or north-east, and pass the range of mountains, you find
a country enjoying an excellent temperature of air and pleasant
seasons, ^vhere the herbage is abundant, and the meadows well
watered, where the vine flourishes, and every kind of fruit tree
except the olive. Here the kings and nobles have tlieir parks '*'
and gardens ; the streams are pure and limpid, issuing into lakes
which are stored with aquatic *** fowls, of all the different species.
Tlie pasture is excellent for horses and domestic cattle, while
the woods supply an ample variety both for the support of mao
end for the chace. Such is the picture *'• set before us, and such

^'* The same division k made bj Strabo and bendgiaoy is one of the four Eastern paradiaea.

Dionysias Pcricg. D'AnviUe, p. 176.

^" Strabo» p. yij. **' This minute circumstance, noticed bf

3'« This tract is noticed by Pliny, lib. vi. Anian, is mentioned also by Le finiyn.
c. 29. Hard, under the name of. Syrtibolus, *'* Even in the present decline, the country
which HardouinexplainSiUfTKyarenosus locus, is so beautiful, that Francklin, after passing
and 0u>Xo^ gleba. See note 97. I have re« the last ascent, and obtaining a view of this
tained Kermesir, which it the orthography of part of the province, bursts out into a vein of
Niebuhr ; but Mr. Jones writes it Ghermcseer, poetry, the effect of his sudden transition from
which I conclude is more correspondent to the parched level of Kcrmesir, and the rude-
Oriental authority. ness of the mountains^

^7 Sheib Bewan, rivulet Bewan, near Nou-

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ever was this cotintry while it was under the protection of a re^^
gular government. The lakes alluded to are doubtless the Lake
Baktegian and a smaller one near Shiraz ; and the streams
which terminate in these, and never find their way to the sea;
are as evidently the pure and brilfiant waters he describes with
the same luxuriant fancy as a poet of Shiraz *** might have painted
them at the hgppiest period of the empire. But how is this
picture now reversed ! War and tyranny have spread desolation
all around : It is not the destruction of Pers6polis **' we lament
over in surveying the ruins of Ghelminar, or Estakar, while we
accuse either the ebriety or insolence of a conqueror ; it is not
the tomb of Cyrus at Pasagardaj plundered and overthrown by
an avarice natmral to soldiers in the hour of victory, or natives
in despair; but it is the fate of a province we deplore, which
once furnished the bravest troops of Asia, which abounded in
every gift that agriculture and industry could produce, which
rose above the barbarism of the East, and was celebrated for its
poets, its philosophers, its beauteous *** race of women, its men,
as comely in their persons, as polite ^' and elegant in their man-
ners ; its merchants *^, whp trafficked to the extremities of the
East ; and its superior culture of the vine ^, the only excellence

^ Shiniz it famous for the best Persiaa

*" AmaOy p. 131, says, that Alexander
burnt it in revenge for the burning of the
Greek temples r but it is hardly a better cause
for turning incendiary than the suggestion of a
courtesan. Strabo says nothing of Thais, but
accords with Arrian, p. 730.

The story of Thais persuading Alexander to
bum PersepoUs is from Clitarchus« Athenseus.
Lib. xiii. c. v. £d. Schweig.

*" The exquisite beauty of Persians, both
mea and women, 19 noticed by Herbert,

p. 135, and by Ebn Haukal, p. 115'.

•** At the present hour I cannot find that,
in comparison with other Asiatics, the Persians
have declined from this pre-eminence, except
that they are accused of fraud and dissimula-
tion : two vices, the natural produce of
despotism, and polite manners in a state of de-^

*'♦ The two goldsmiths of Timour wert
natives of Shiraz. Arabsia, .tom. iif. p. 873.

''' Shiraz wine is still in as high estimation
throughout the East as it appears in the poetry
of Sadi. I once tasted it, and thought it rt<»

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F £ R S I Sr 4^5

xvhich despotism has not annihilated. A^ the present nioment,
the villages have ceased, and there are np travellers in the high-
ways. Tlie capital is in the possession of a Kurd '**, a robber
both by birth and profession ; and of the distraction consequent
upon the death of Nadir Shah there seems to be no end.

There is still a third division of Persis towards the north, com-
prehending the mountainous country, which is wild, rugged, and
inhabited by barbarous tribes, where the air is cold, and the
summits covered with snow ^\ The barbarians are the ancient
Uxii, or modem Asciacs ; and the range called Louristan di-
vides Persis from the ancient Media* Ispahan, the modern
capital of the empire, is just to the north of this chain, and not
in Persis. These mountains extend equally on the north o£
Susiana^, and send down those streams which pass through
that province either into the Tigris or the Gulph of Persia ;
while the more eastern part ftimishes the torrents which water
Persis, and all sink into lakes, or are exhausted by derivations-
for the purposes of agriculture. One of the largest of these
streams, called Bend-Emir '*% or the Noble River, falls into the
lake Backtegian (the Dirje Nemch,*or brackish sea), twelve
leagues from Pers^polis, and four or five from Shiraz. It is the
Koros or Cyms ^Kuros] of the ancients ^, written Kar by Ebn

semblcd Maddra» bit with 9 higber fiavonir. tyraany of his successow made him regretted.

It 18 said to have the quality of keeping its **' KvfTun xal Ma^l Xirfixoi. Strabo> p. 729.

qualities in hot climates like that wine. EAi/juumm ntd Tla^purtuuwol, P. 732.

^^ Kerim Khaor ia Niebuhr's time, in the *^ Strabo has sometimes confounded Susi«

year one thousand seve» hundred and sixty- ana with Persis, a»p. 727; but he distinguishes^

five. Francklin describes Kerim Khan as a p* 728.

benefactor to Persia, and in- a better light '*» The Araxes of Strabo, p. 729 ; but he

thaa Niebuhr ; but Francklin was at Shiraz errs strangely about the course of it. See

in the year one thousand seven hundred and d'Anvillc*s Memoir.

cighty-Kven, after the deathof Kerim, and the ^ Strabo, p. 729.

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Haukal^ And Cqer-ab [the river Ker or Kur] by Al Edrissi*
AiTian, in his third book, has unfortunately confounded Perse^
polis "' with Pasagardae ^^* ; but the former was the residence of
the Persian monarchs, and the latter apparently tlieip place of
burial. It is near sixty miles distant from Pers6polis, in the
tract called Koilfe-Persis [Persis between the mountains] by
Strabo, which ought to produce other torrents and another"'
lake *** for their reception, by the nature of the country ; and
such we find there are in the account of tliis province by Ebn
HaukaL This town is supposed still to exist under the name of
Phasa, or Phasa-gerd, which Golius interprets the city of the
north-east, because it is cooled by the refreshing gales from that
quarter, which is ijnplied in Phasa.


To delineate the province ^nd rivers of Susiana is a task of
no "* ordinary difficulty ; for though we have ample materials,
both historical and geographical, they are all either ancient or
oriental : no modern or European traveller has ventured to ex-
plore this dangerous tract, and the actual state of the interior is *

^' The archives, and a great part of the Koureh of Shapour, and a third also in the

treasure, were kept at Persepohs. Strabo^ same distmt. Ebn Haukal, p. ^.
p. 730 ; and so it appears, from Alexander's ^** There is something like this in d'Aa-

haete to reach it before the treasury should be viUe'j maps, Atie premiere partie, &c. Strabo

pkndered, or conveyed away. An*, lib. iii* mentions an Agraditus, or Agradites, here,

*** The error is natural, for Parsa-gardae is which was changed into Gyms, p. 729. This

Perac-polis, literally translated. The Pera6- is noted by d* Anvilk, and refuted*
polis fixed at Estakar is determined by Alex- ^^' See the wild geognqphy of Ammianus

ander's march. Marcellinus respecting this province. Lib. xxiii.

^ The lake Backtegian is in the Koureh or 456.
district of Istakbar ; there is another in th^


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ss little known as the centre of Ambia, This creates difficulties
which the following discussion is unable to remove, but ouf
knowledge of the coast has been much enlaiiged since the pub-
lication of Mr. d'Anville's^ Memoir ; and if for this reason I am
enabled to correct his mistakes, and to explain intricacies for
which he had no clue, I shall be thought less adventurous in
combating Cellarius and Salmasius, who have enveloped ther
question in erudition, and ne]^ected modem authcmty alto*

The fact is, however, that the ancient geographer* cannot be
understood or reconciled, without reference ta the actual state
of the country ; for they have applied different namea to the
same rivers, and the same name to different rivers ; and the same
writer has varied his appellations as often as he has copied dif-
ferent authorities. Of thi» I shaft produce proof in regard to
Arrian himself; and though I lAight have reduced what is ne-
cessary for elucidating the passage of Nearchus into a less conr^
pass, I trust that the length of the following discussion will be
acceptable to such as think the reconciliation of classical geo-
graphy ah object of importance.

After the whole business was completed, I wa^ informed by
Major Rennell that he had been long engaged in disentangling:
the same intricacies, and treading the same ground ; a cause of
no small apprehension to me, if bis conclusions should appear
upon publication to differ from mine ; of no small gratification,
if they should be found to coincide. I shall at least have a gene-
rous ad\^rsaiy to encounter ; and as I have no predilection for
any system, I can, upon better information, retract as freely as^
I have asserted. Truth, alone ought to be the object of research j

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and those, who are not so fortunate as to attain it, ought to
subscribe ^^ to those who do.

Susiana is sometimes regarded as a district of Persis, and
sometimes enumerated as a distinct province. . We can hardly
trace a time in which it had an independent sovereign of its own,
unless it be in the my Uiology of the Greeks *" ; and nature seems
to have connected it with Persis, by a variety of local circum-
stances, as much as by vicinity. It is separated on the north
from Media by a range of mountains which extend also into
Persis, of which the general appellation is Louristan ; possessed
in all ages by independent tribes, which were confined within
their own limits, w^hen the government was strong ; and, when
it was weak, returned with increased avidity to a life of rapine.
So far as can be collected from the transactions of Alexander,
the Uxii ^ and Paratak^ni were upon the southern face of these
mountains ; the Coss^i and Elymaitae **• on the north ; the Uxii
lie on the left, between Susa and the A'rosis ; the Paratak^ni,
on a part where the mountains have a much greater breadth, on
the north of Persis. This range, where it rises on the west, ap-
proaches, but does not touch ^, the. Tigris. In this interval,

^ I subscribe to the sentiment •£ the mo- is the temple of Jupiter Belus in Elymaif,

diest and ingenuous Niebuhr : which Antiochus the Great is said to have

n A'y a point de description de voyage sans plundered^ and where he lost his life. A

defauty n'y aucun Toyageur exempt de tout temple of Bel or Baal it might be, but Jupiter

pr^uge^ ainsi le parti le plus sage c^est de is the addition of the Greeks. The supersti-

ne pas d^fendre ses opinions avec opiniatret& tion of BaaU or the worship of the Sun» was

Niebuhr, tom. i. p. 85. Arabic edit. Am- prevalent in all these countries ; and Baal-bec

sterd. ^ literally Heli6poliS| or rather the temple of

^ In their accounts^ Memnon, son of Baal.
Hthonus^ was the founder of Susa. *^ Otter, earning down from Bagdat» marks

^ Uxii, jticiact. PanUaccni, Bacdari* them at a distance, where they first begin to

Kosssdy Kissii, Cosset. Shew themielf es between Amara andJKhonia,

^ Elymifitsc, the Elam of Scripture. It

A. •

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Mr. d'Anville brings down the Gunedhi, which is the Gjndes
of Her6dotus so much huraihated by Cyrus, and which he con-
ducts into the Tigris just above its junction with the Euphrates
at Khorna. The rivers or canals of Susiana are connected with
this stream, and in this sense it foims the boundary of the pro-
vince on the Tigris ; but as soon as the mountains rise, they run
in one uninterrupted chain, covering not only Susiana and Per-
fiis, but extending much farther towards the east. This chain
sends down all the numerous streams which water the fertile
plains below ; and there is an assertion common to Strabo, Al-
Edrissi, Ebn Haukal, and Cheref-eddin, that all these rivers
join the Eul^us, and communicate, by means of canals, with the
Tigris. The account of these canals is confirmed by every
Oriental authority we possess ; and the policy of the government
in all ages, while there was a government, appears to have paid
as much attention to this object, and to agriculture, as Egypt
itself. The fact admits of proof under the later dynasties, and
the journal of Nearchus will furnish some evidence of its anti-
quity. It is not unreasonable to suppose, that this communica-
tion was extended- to the A'rosis aJso^ and by that stream to
Persis ; and if this were true, the intercourse between Persis and
Mesopotamia, by an inland course, was complete.


The Arosis, which is the Oro^tis of Strabo, Phny, and Pto-
lemy, and which Cell^rius **' supposes to be properly the Arois,

^ CeHarius ia undoubtedly accurate, for Dioddrus calk it Arazes in a paasage, not un-
^rstood by Salmasius, p. 11 84.


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Ares ^, or Araxis ^, is the boundary between Persis and Susi-
ana ; its modern names are almost as numerous. TAb^, or the
river, is the title it takes by way of pre-eminence among the
Persians, for it is the largest river ^ of the province, a. circum^
stance pecuUarly noticed by Nearchus. It rises between* the
borders of Pars and Spahaun, according to Ebn Haukal, and
flows down to Aijan^ [Argoun or ArrhegianJ, whence it is
called Ab-Argoun ; and as it approaches the sea, Nehr Tab ; the
name it takes in our modem charts i^ Endian '^, from a town
upon its banks, a few miles distant from the sea.

This river is formed from a variety of sources, which spring
out of the mountains of Louristan ; and as the chain is of
greater breadth in that part of its range, the river seems to be
Targe in proportion. Alexander and Timour, in their march
from Susa to Persis, both inclined to the mountains, in order to
attack the Uxii, or Asciacs, who lie in that direction ; and they
both passed the sources of this stream, at a considerable dis-
tance ^ from the sea. In the march of Timour, there are seve^
ral sources on the west of this river, which the commentatoi
upon Gheref-eddin carries into the Eul^us ^. Alexander ^ and

«♦* VTho shall gi^ us the etymolo^ of
mere I Bruce found a Skclti, and an Anron,
or Avon, in Abyssinia. Aar is a mcr in
Fraace> Amo in Italy, What language shall
be found that shall furnish names common to
Abyssinia, Media, Italy, France, England,
and Scotland I I have an obscure reason for
thinking that Ar, or Aar, usually denotes

*^ Araxis is a Dame common to a variety
ef rivere in different provinces of the East.
The Armenian Aras, which falls into the
CyrM, and so into theOnpitn Sea, is the most
#dcbrated. This is the foracm inSgnatus Araxis .

^^ laoi U Toy i|« «orroy e^CoAXwy is the t»^

pression of Arrian, not very accurate.

^ Arjan or Argan is one merileh^ or thirty
miles from the sea. Ebn Haukal, p. 105.

^ Nicbuhr writes it Hindian.

'*^ Timour at Kerdistan, 70 miles from the
mouth, according to d'Anvilk. See Cheref^
eddin, vol. ii. p. 185.

^ Chcref-eddin calls the river of Susa^

**» After tile defeat of Ariobarzanes.

See Q. Curt. lib. v. 5. Tota r.octe cunt
equitibus itineris tanto spatio fatigatis« «L
Anubem prima luce pervenit..

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Timour both proceeded towards this river, to attack a forti'dss
in the mountains, on tl^e northern frontier of Persis, and. which
is supposed to be Calaa-sefid '^ by Cheref-eddin : but they are
different posts ^^\ And while Alexander marched through the
mountains on the north, he detached Parmenio, with the gross
of the army, by the ordinary *** road to Persis. This is the road
which continues to this day, if there be any road, which Al-
Edrissi describes as cutting the A'rosis at Ragian, »about thirty
miles from its moutli, and where, he says, there is a bridge
called Baccar, at a bow-shot's ^ distance from the town. He
gives a variety of routes through Persis, all verging to this point;
and, from the size of the stream, here probably was the first
place where it would admit of a bridge.

The mountains which give birth to the A^rosis do not approach
the sea, nearer than the neighbourhood of Rhegian ; but seem
to leave a low country on the coast, corresponding with the
Kermesir i?n the gulph- This must have always left Susiana
open to the Persians, and have been the means of keeping it in
dependence, as was its constant state; but on the north the
jange sweeps round till it unites with that chain which forms the
i)ack ground of the Kermesir, and this chain, according to
d'Anville, no river passes. Tlie. sources, therefore, which
Alexander and Timour found in their march to the East, all

^ Kalaa-sefeedy WUte Cattle, is at present Ariobarsaoes, at his fortress was previous to

the remains of a prodigious fortress on the top passing the river A'rosis.
joi a mountain, which has been kvelled and cut ^'' Diod6rus Curtius and Arrian all make

^own for that purpose* It is a place men- the fort defended by Ariobarzanes to lie on

tioned in the earhest Persian ptems, and the the west side of the river.
Iskander Naumeh, or history of Alesumder, '^'.Kom tiN c^iic»|iTof rit U Uigrot^ ft^uamr,

^relates most heroic actions performed by Alex- Arr. lib. iii. p. 130.
andcr at the capture of it. Mr. H. Jones. But «« Nub. Geog. p. 126.
JCaka-sefid cannot be the fortress defended by ^


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contribute to form, not the A'rosis, but the Bend-Emir, or Noble
River, which passes on in the vicinity of Shiraz and Persepolis
till it is lost in the lake Baghteghian, or exhausted in adorning
and fertilising the beautiful cour\try of Koil6-Persis "*. We have
now the A'rosis distinct, according to d'Anville, and I have
found nothing in ancient or modem history to contradict his
system ; nor do I think that any future discovery will invalidate
it, farther than perhaps to find a different issue for some of his
minuter sources. This A'rosis is the ea$tem boundary of Su-
siana, where Nearchus is now anchored ; and deferring the in-
termediate streams for the present, I shall proceed to consider
the Euphrates and the Tigris united in the Schat-el-Arab, which
forms the western limit..



The Euphrates *** and the Tigris both preseiTe to tliis day,,
among the natives, the same appellation assigned to them by
Moses ^^* in the book of Genesis, for he styles the one Hu-

«* Ccele-Penw, like Coel^-Syriai Persis be-
tween the mountains.

«»W» QdiXet<r<roctf xotKurca Tk o /uiw 'Ew^pam? <I>OPA.

Joaephus, lib. i. c. i» Antiq.

The Euphrates andthe Tigres fall into the
sea of E'rythras: the Euphrates is called
Phora, which signifies, by one derivation,
Dispersion, and by another^ a Flower; but
the Tigres is named Diglath, an appellation
which indicates sharf ^nd- narrow*

Phora, however, in some MSS. is written

Phorath like Diglath, and is in reality the
modem name Phorath, PhSirat, Forat, F'rati
It has two derivations from the Hebrew, *^.£}
°^ !nD» P^^*" o*" Pharatz, to jr/rW, which
indicates {crxtiaca^v or) dispirsiortf or HTD*
Pharah* to produce Jruit or fiowen^ (ayfio^).

Diglath is deqved, in this form, from 7^p',
Khalal, to go Jivift (ofti /ait« rtvormo;). This is
a coarse etymology, for o?u is not swift (but
jjjti/'), and we have nothing to represent /ait*
ownrro^. Perhaps Josephus and his <x)untr}ip.
men were as bad etymologists as the Greeks.

^^^ Gen. ii. 14. Pherat is used frequently
in Scripture with the pronoun, as JTIfl J^^^J^.

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S us IS, OR SUSIANA. . 4^*

Pherdt, or Pherdt, and the other Hid-DekheP", two names
which are still preserved in the country with no greater variatioa
than Ph rat and Deghel ^^\ or Dejel. These two rivers, hke the
Ganges and Burrhampooter, rise at no great distance from each
other in Armenia ; and, after separating ta embrace the great
tract called Mesopotamia, unite again, hke those two streams,
at Gorno or Khorna„ about an hundred and thirty miles distant
from the Gulph of Persia. D'Anville has §traiigely curtailed "•'
this distance ; for in his map of Asia he makes it less than se-
vcnty miles, and in his two latter maps has extended it to some-

Online LibraryWilliam VincentThe commerce and navigation of the ancients in the Indian Ocean → online text (page 36 of 49)