LETTER xs DOMESTIC ANIMALS 117
In the greater part of this country I have not seen
a mule, with the exception of some mule foals on a high
pass near Ali-kuh. The Bakhtiaris breed mules, however,
and sell them in Isfahan in the spring, but rarely use
them for burden. They breed horses in some places,
exporting the colts and keeping the fillies. Their horses
are small and not good-looking, but are wiry and enduring,
and as surefooted as mules. In fact they will go any-
where. One check on the breeding of good horses is
that, when a man has a good foal, he is often compelled
to make a present of it to any superior who fancies it.
The horses are shod, as in Persia proper, with thin
iron plates covering nearly the whole hoof, secured by six
big-headed nails. Eeared in camps and among children,
they are perfectly gentle and scarcely require breaking.
A good Bakhtiari horse can be bought for £6 or £8.
A good mule is worth from £7 to £11. Asses are
innumerable, and are used for transporting baggage,
equally with oxen and small cows. A good donkey can
be bought for 30s.
The goats are very big and long-haired. The sheep,
which nearly always are like the goats brown or black,
and very tall, are invariably of the breed with the great
pendulous tails, which sometimes weigh nearly eight
pounds. They give a great deal of milk, and it is on
this, not on cows' milk, that the people rely for the
greater part of their food, their cheese, curds, mast,
The goat-skins are invaluable to them. They use
them for holding water and milk, and as churns for their
butter. They make all their tents, their tent carpets,
and their sacks for holding wool of goat's-hair, woven on
rude portable looms.
The female costume changed at Shahbadar. The
women now wear loose garments like nightgowns, open