Skip to main content

Full text of "Researches in Assyria, Babylonia, and Chaldæa; forming part of the labors of the Euphrates expedition"

See other formats


This is a digital copy of a book that was preserved for generations on library shelves before it was carefully scanned by Google as part of a project 

to make the world's books discoverable online. 

It has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one that was never subject 

to copyright or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 

are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often difficult to discover. 

Marks, notations and other maiginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 

publisher to a library and finally to you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud to partner with libraries to digitize public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order to keep providing tliis resource, we liave taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial parties, including placing technical restrictions on automated querying. 
We also ask that you: 

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request that you use these files for 
personal, non-commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain fivm automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort to Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attributionTht GoogXt "watermark" you see on each file is essential for in forming people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 
countries. Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liabili^ can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through the full text of this book on the web 

at |http: //books .google .com/I 












]:ksj;A': '■!]!■, 

iSSYK-A, JiABVi:,0\iA, \S>i : il ■ 

THE Eiii'imAvi.s ::.\i i:i 

^VILIJAM AINSW'.-'liri! I ■; I, 


rHEHi tiMilT Of Till: ui-.tBP '• 

UliN V-'. I'AllliKU, W!-,IST blii .■■ 












&C. &0* &c> 


# ft 

.... . .»• , • . 



< . ••' 





The general Physical Features of Taurus, and of the Plains of 
Mesopotamia and Syria .... 




Structure ...... 


Climate ..... 


Vegetation ...*., 



Structure ..... 


Physical Characters .... 


Climate ..... 


Vegetation ..... 


Zoology ..... 


Birds ...... 




Reptiles ..... 


Insects ...... 


Natural History of the River Euphrates 


Rock Formations of the River Euphrates, from Taurus to 

the Alluvial Districts of Babylonia . . .49 

Researches on the latest Deposits by Transport (commonly 
called Diluvium) ; and on the Physical Evidences of the 
Noachian Deluge, contained in the Basin of the Euphrates, 
and in the Plains of Babylonia ; . . .93 

Description and Progress of the Alluvial Districts of Babylonia, 
ChaldaBa, and Susiana. 
Part I. — Physical Geography and Geology . .108 

Part II. — Historical . . . . . 148 

Rivers of Susiana . . . . . .196 

Researches on the Geology of the Head of the Persian Gulf . 217 



Structure of that part of the Persian Apennines designated as 
the " Ladders," or the kXi/luzkc; of Diodorus Siculus 

Geology of Southern Kurdistan .... 

Rock Formations of the Territory of Musul, of 'Urfah, and of 
North Kurdistan 

Formations of the Territory of Musul 
Territory of 'Urfah (Osrhoene) 
Geology of Northern Kurdistan 

Rock Formations of Taurus .... 

Territories of Ain-Tab, Kills, and Antioch 


Territory of Antioch (Antaklyah) 

Casiotis, and Territories of Ladikiyeh and Upper Orontes 

Jawur Dagh, and Akma Dagh (Amanus and Rhosus) 

Gilician Taurus ...... 

Glossary of some of the less defined Geological Terms . 










Plain of Babylonia 

Hall of Chosrocs 

The Mound of Babel, from the Biyer • 
The Kasr, a fragment of the Palace of SeminUnis 
Jebel Akr£, or Mount Casius .... 
Sections of Taurus ..•••• 
Ideal Section of Euphrates .... 
— — ^-^— the Persian Apennines 
■■■ Southern Kurdistan • 
a part of Northern Kurdistto 

Vignette in Title-page. 


At end 
' of the 


The present work, containing a very small portion of the 
scientific labours of the Euphrates Expedition, owes its 
existence to tlie approaching departure of the Author on 
a new exploratory journey to the East. It was judged 
advisable on many accounts that he should see it through 
the press, although other portions of the same labours not 
being yet completed; the disadvantages were entailed of 
his not having so accurate, or so general a map of the 
country, as if the materials of the Expedition had been 
already laid down. It may also be expected to cause 
some sacrifices in consistency, between the opinions of 
the different parties engaged in the same great work ; but 
this is, perhaps, the less to be regretted, as the points in 
historical geography are mostly theoretical ; while those 
embodied in the survey under Colonel Chesney, will be 
all of a positive character. 

The objects which the Author proposed to himself 
(after an introductory sketch of the physical features and 
natural history of the included districts,) were, first, the 
description of the formations of the river Euphrates ; in 
which it will be found that the deposits above the chalk, 
hitherto generally supposed to be confined to basins or 
circumscribed localities, assume in these countries an 
extent of geographical developement which gives to them 

b 2 


the same geological importance that belongs to any of the 
other rock formations of the crust of the globe: the 
division of the gypsum deposit into two great portions, 
characterized by a different association of beds, and sepa- 
rated by a great deposit of marine limestones: and 
lastly, the geological relations of the bitumen and 
naphtha springs in Babylonia, he hopes will also prove of 

The second object has been to describe the indices of 
the Deluge of Scripture, which are found to exist in the 
land supposed to have been tenanted by Noah and his 
descendants, and to have been the seat of the Tower of 
Babel. The Author was fiiUy aware here, both of the 
magnitude and the delicacy of the inquiry which he had 
entered upon, but approaching it, as he did, with a firm 
belief that there is nought in the physical world but will 
lend, if correctly understood, its evidence in testimony of 
the Holy Writ; he had not a momentary apprehension, 
but by adhering, to the best of his power, to the limits 
of a severe induction ; the physical phenomena would be 
found not only to correspond with, but also to illustrate, 
the truths of the Sacred Records. 

It is, indeed, the duty of every student of natural 
laws to vindicate the evidences of Scripture ; as it is, of 
those who make the moral world the field of their in- 
quiry. And if the results of the investigation of the 
Diluvian vestiges in Shinar, corrobomte what some geo- 
logists have before opined, from researches carried on in 
other countries, that the latest formation by transport 


(not belonging to causes at present in operation,) is not, in 
the country of the Deluge itself, as it is not in other 
countries, the index of that catastrophe ; there is notliing 
in the opinion previously entertained of the connexion of 
the two, nor in that now suggested by these Babylonian 
researches, but which equally give force to the same great 
facts contained in the sacred history of the earth. 
Geology has hitherto suffered much more from the un- 
philosophical zeal of, it is to be regretted, an often factious 
opposition, than it has done, although so seductive to 

theory, from the speculative boldness of its own fol- 
lowers ; and the Author is hence desirous of allaying at 
the outset the fears of the most scrupulous. 

The third object has been the investigation of the pro- 
gress of the alluvia of Babylonia, Chaldsea, and Susiana, an 
investigation which is replete with the deepest interest both 
to history and to science. The most ancient records in the 
history of man are here brought directly in contact with 
the more modem periods of geology. The foundations 
of kingdoms and the progress of nations are traced in 
accordance with the changes which took place in the 
physical aspect of the country; and the succession of 
monuments of past times, is so associated with indices of 
changes in the soil itself; that science loses its rugged- 
ness in wandering in almost untrodden districts over 
which, religion, tradition and history, have long shed a 
halo of glory. 

The chief novelties contained in this part of the 
inquiry, are the positioning of Rehoboth, of Calah, of 


Besen, of the Pylse of Xenophon, of Sitace, of Accad, and 
of Opis, — ^the division of Babylon into towns with distinct 
appellations,— -the position of the Wall of Media, and of 
the different canals of Babylonia ; the unravelling of the 
various questions connected with the old course of the 
Euphrates, the various level and different mouths of 
Euphrates, Tigris, and Eulseus, and the extent of the 
Pallacopas ; the situation of the lakes of Chaldaea and that 
of Susiana ; and the positioning, in these latter districts, 
of Erech, of Urchoe, of Teredon, of Ampe, and Aginis. 

The other objects of the work are of a more purely 
scientific nature; and it is to hoped will be found to 
comprise, as fitr as the topographical distribution of rock 
formations is concerned, the description of a large extent 
of new country, which the extraordinary advantages of 
the Euphrates Expedition, and the encouragement given 
to research by the commanding officer, in instituting 
subsequently to the breaking up of that Expedition an 
exploratory excursion into Kurdistan and in Taurus, have 
been the means of first gaining over to science. 

It was, it may also be mentioned here, the same 
anxiety to promote discovery, and the judicious disposal 
of the time of the officers of the Expedition, that led to 
the exploration of the country south of Antioch, and the 
Amanus to the north, — which induced Colonel Chesney 
to join in a laborious journey through the Cilician Taurus 
to Mar'ash, which brought about the examination of the 
districts of *Urfah and HarILn, and secured a first investi- 
gation of the mountains of Farsistl^n. 


The Author is, however, too deeply sensible of the 
want that there exists, from the absence of sufficiently 
detailed and close examination, more especially of the 
organic remains, of a correct determination of many of 
these deposits. Over so wide an extent of country, the 
labours which he presents to the public, can only be 
looked upon in the light of scientific pioneering, which is 
all that they deserve, and all that they lay claim to. 

The section of Taurus is chiefly interesting, from the 
approximate knowledge, which structure, outline, and 
elevation best affi3rd, of the various groups of which that 
country of mountains is composed, and which presents a 
variety of hilly ranges and of rock formations, that have 
hitherto been too much generalized into a common whole, 
or even still more rudely so, into one or two parallel and 
linear chains. It will, however, require a prolonged 
research before this system can be reduced to order. 
The geognostic character of the primary rocks varies fre- 
quently ; the periods of elevation are also different, and 
the history of the deposition and the tilting up of the 
modemse dimentary deposits, is almost unknown. 

The structure of the Durdun Dagh, as compared with 
the Amanus, assists in this kind of topographical know- 
ledge of Asia Minor, more particularly as connected with 
the course and distribution of its mountain-chains. 

The country to the south of Antioch presents us with 
the interesting feature of a tertiary basin broken up, or 
indeed, almost comminuted into small fragments, by 
igneous rocks. 


The principal interest of the Section of the Persian 
Apennines is centered in the dynamical evidences of a 
gradual elevation of rocky strata upon linear and Circular 
axes, denoting, according to Mr. Hopkins, the uniform 
elevation of elongated or circular areas ; and the ranges 
of hills so originating, are at the limit of the alpine dis- 
tricts, only interrupted by occasional transverse cracks or 
fissures, constituting mountain passes ; while in the centre 
the same unequal disturbances have given origin to the 
irregular outline of a mountain chain. This subject is 
here interestingly illustrated, but the principle obtains in 
precisely the same manner in Taurus, and has lately 
received an extensive generalization, as applied to the 
Andes, by Mr. Darwin. 

The ranges which constitute the Persian Apennines 
present remarkable distinctness in the anticlinal lines, 
and that uniformity in physical features, — range after 
range, plain after plain, — ^rising one above the other, 
which gained to them the antique title of KX^/Aa^e?, and 
leave them still among the more interesting districts, in 
point of phenomena of structure, which exist on the 
surface of the earth. 

It is well worthy of remark, also, that the chemico-ther- 
mal actions which give birth to fountains of petroleum and 
naphtha ; exhibit themselves at the extreme lateral limits 
of the area of elevations in the Persian Apennines, exactly 
as the fountains of Hit are geologically situated with 
regard to Taurus ; occurring at nearly the extreme point 
of the termination of a series of rock formations which 


become more and more modern from the mountains to 
the alluvial deposits. 

Southern Kurdistan has not fewer objects of high 
interest ; the low but continuous Hamerun rising out of 
the great plains, the outlying fountains of naphtha and 
petroleum, and the peculiar phenomena of burning 
flames near Kerkuk, are subjects such as the geologist 
does not meet with at every step, to exercise his inge- 
nuity upon ; and which, from that very circumstance, 
more particularly demanded a careful investigation. 

In the interior, the parallel ranges of hills belonging 
to the same district, present similar general features in 
arrangement and structure as the mountains of Farsistan ; 
thus establishing their connexion with the same great 
system, which the Author has designated as that of the 
Persian Apennines. 

The carbonaceous measures of the same districts 
formed a particular subject of inquiry. It was part of 
the injunctions given to the Author to search for evi- 
dences of coal or of mineral combustibles, and he was 
thus led into the heart of a mountain district previously 
unvisited by Europeans. 

Geologists will suppose at once, from the nature of the 
formations which occupy these great extents of country, 
that little is to be expected, by analogy, from the coal 
measures of Western Asia, as Russegger (" Athenaeum," 
No. 549,) has also remarked of Egypt. But analogy 
must be received here with caution ; for as the gypseous 
and other deposits of the supra-cretaceous formations 


exceed so much in developement, anything that the same 
formations present us with, in European countries : so we 
may expect equal promises from any well-established 
lignite deposit occurring where there is greater continuity 
of beds, than in Europe, or in the deposit at present 
wrought in the countries, now under consideration, in the 
neighbourhood of Bairut. 

In Northern Kurdistan, the disturbed state of the 
Kurdish tribes confined the Author's investigations to the 
western border of the mountain districts ; but it is to be 
hoped that the central portions will be explored in the 
ensuing Expedition. 

The Barometrical admeasurements were made under 
different circumstances. In Casius and Amanus, com- 
parative observations were made at the base and at the 
summit or acclivities of hills, and the observations so made 
were compared with contemporaneous observations made 
at the mouth of the Orontes ; but in Taurus and Kurdis- 
tan the possession of a single instrument gave to the 
observations chiefly a comparative value among them- 
selves, and which, corrected for temperature and latitude 
as well as for the deficiencies of the instrument, still 
gave results which may be considered only as very good 
approximations. Some remarkable examples of this 
occurred ; for example, at 'Osmanjik, at the level of the 
Kizil Irmfik, the barometer indicated for that river an 
elevation of 918 feet ; after carrying the instrument over 
a rocky and hilly country, the river was again approached 
at Hiji Hamzah at a distance of 21 miles^ and it gave an 


indication of an elevation of 916 feet. So close a result 
to what must have been the inclination of the river, must, 
however, be looked upon as partly accidental ; for in a 
far more extensive series of bi-horal observations, made 
on the river Euphrates during the descent of Her 
Majesty's steamer, although the rise of the barometer 
was constant from Bir to the Persian Gulf, still the 
regularity of that rise, not only from accidental causes 
and changes in wind and weather, but also from the 
extent of the horary oscillations of the instrument in- 
creasing towards the equator, often baffled (in the small 
number of local observations) all attempts to obtain even 
the means of correction. Results, in which all the alti- 
tudes (however promising in a comparative point of view) 
can be expected to coincide with the truth, must be 
founded upon a prolonged series of observations ; and if 
such discrepancies were met with in latitudes where the 
iiTegular oscillations are almost null, as on the river 
Euphrates — ^where at least eight observations a day were 
made — ^how many errors must have crept into the results, 
as indicated by a barometer carried in variable weather, 
and under many adverse circumstances, across Kurdistan 
and Taurus ! 

It is very much to be regretted that, the barometer 
having been detained at Basrah for the necessary coi^- 
rections in the pendulum experiments, the section of the 
Persian Apennines is founded upon merely estimated 
elevations, and, owing to a similar omission, a section of 
the Durdun Dagh has not been introduced into the work. 


It is scarcely deserving of mention, that the Author 
has been once subjected to no sparing criticism for the 
adoption of scientific names, which are not in common 
use in this country. Although anxious not to introduce 
continental terms that are not imperiously demanded, he 
abides by his original determination, of endeavouring to 
unite the good of one school with that of another. The 
progress of European, as well as of British, geology, is 
no longer so much in its infancy, that we may tremble 
at using words familiar to the educated of every country. 
An able French geologist says upon this subject, "II 
n'y a plus que les Anglais, on I'ecole de Londres qui 
s'ecartent souvent du langage classique;" and what is 
equally true and just, " Comme on juge I'^ducation d'un 
individu, par son parler, de meme on peut-etre tent^ de 
prendre le style du g^ologue comme thermometre de son 
savoir." (Boue, « Voy. Geologue," t. i. p. 419.) 

It remains now to acknowledge the numerous obli- 
gations under which the Author has been put in collect- 
ing his materials; the greatest amount of which are due 
to the gallant officer to whom this work is inscribed, and 
who always placed all the papers, maps, &c., belonging 
to the Expedition, at his disposal, besides assisting him 
with whatever was available from his former journeys in 
the same countries. To Colonel Taylor, of the Baghdad 
Residency, the Author is indebted for the use of a MS. 
translation of Abu-el-Fedah, and for the positioning of 
several antique sites in Babylonia and Chaldsea. To 
Dr, Ross, also of the Residency, the Author is obliged 


for the first details of his exploration of the ^Athlm or 
Physcus, of the Dijailah, or old bed of Tigris, and the Sid 
Chali, or Wall of Nimrud, and for many points observed 
during a journey made by the same gentleman and Mn 
Baillie Fraser, in the marshes of Lemlun and the plains 
of Chaldaea. 

The Wall of Nimrud was subsequently seen, and 
bearings taken by the Expedition, which also ascended 
the river Tigris, to beyond Dokalah. The systems of the 
Nahr-wan, explored on Tigris, was also visited, near the 
'Athim, by the Author, with Mr. Rassam, on his tour in 
Kurdistan. The old, as well as the existing, beds of 
canals in Babylonia were explored during excursions 
made from Felujah to Baghdad, from Baghdad to Aker 
Kuf and to Babylon. The lower parts of Euphrates, 
Tigris, and Karun, are derived from the labours of the 
Expedition. A small party explored Ka'ban, and reached 
Bund-i-Kil, another from Basrah visited Zobeir and its 
environs; and another the Zaragiyah to the east. The 
coast at Bunah Deri was approached in a country boat, 
and Ghorein and Kharij were visited in the schooner 
attached to the Hon. East India Company's Residency 
at Abu Shehr. 

The Author is indebted to the Rev. R. Sheepshanks, 
of Trinity College, Cambridge, for the calculation of the 
observations made by the lamented astronomer of the 
Expedition, Lieut. Murphy, R.E., more particularly the 
positioning of Basrah, Felujah, Hillah, Suk-el-Shuyuk, 
and Kumah. Lieut. Cleaveland's observations furnished 


the positiong of Hawaz, Ismaeli, Mo'ammerfih, Kut- 
'amarah, and Baghdad ; and to Mr. J. Arrowsmith he is 
indebted for reducing these to form, and for the map 
which accompanies the memoir. 

The Rev. Mr. Renouard revised the greater part of 
the Oriental names, and, where this is not the case, the 
system followed by that gentleman has been adopted as 
nearly as possible ; but notwithstanding every attention 
to this, some inconsistencies have escaped correction, 
which, it is to be hoped, will be dealt with mercifully. 
The vowels have their Italian sounds, the consonants the 
English, and the same letters (with a few exceptions) 
mark the correspondent letters in the Eastern characters. 
The long syllables are accented. It was necessary to 
adopt some uniform system, and one of higher authority 
than that used by the Royal Geographical Society could 
not have been found. 

Mr* A. A. Staunton, of the Expedition, and now of 
the Royal Artillery, politely furnished the drawing of the 
plain of Babylonia, which forms the frontispiece to the 
volume, and gives a good idea of the uniformity of these 
level tracts, to which interest is here added by the 
Euphrates river, with its groves of date-trees, the mounds 
of the Kasr and Amram to the left, and the lightning- 
struck Birs Nimrud in the distance, by many identified 
with the Tower of Babel, Mid illustrating the effect of 
these antique mounds, as seen over the plain on the 
horizon's verge. Her Majesty's steamer, named after the 
river which she first (after the melancholy loss of her 


consort) navigated, is there, — suggesting strange notions 
of the triumph of British art and of British perseverance, 
in thus approaching, in a manner that ought to have 
deserved more from a nation's pride; the nursery of 
mankind, and the cradle of human knowledge. 

The Author is indebted to the same pencil for the 
sketch of the Hall of Chosroes (Tak K^srah), which is 
on the title-page, — ^the only remnant, besides mounds of 
ruins, of the antique Ctesiphon ; in jealousy, by the side 
of Seleucia, and, not improbably, at or upon, the remains 
of the Chalne of earlier nations. 

The Kasr, a fragment of the palace of Semiramis, 
with its supposed remaining offspring of the Hanging 
Gardens, taken from the top of the ruins, amid which the 
figures in the foreground stand ; and the mound of Babel, 
as viewed from the river, with its Kufahs or asphaltic 
coracles, dating from a most remote antiquity ; are from 
the same quarter. 

Jebel Akra, or Mount Casius, taken at a distance 
of upwards of 30 miles, and from beyond the lake of 
Antioch, with some disrupted volcanic rocks, above a 
powerful spring which constitutes the "Gul Bashf," or 
" Head of the Lake," is from the portfolio of Lieut. 
Cockburn, R.A., another of the much regretted losses oi 
the Expedition. 


■vial DiBlricts 



The general Physical Features op Taurus, and op 
THE Plains op Mesopotamia and Syria. 

Assyria or Aturia, in the days of one of the fathers of 
geography, Strabo, comprised all those Asiatic coun- 
tries, south of Taurus, which were not included in Ariana 
(Persia), Arabia Proper, and Palestine. 

Assyria, including Taurus, is distinguished by its 
structure, its configuration, and its natural productions, 
into three zones, or districts. By structure, into a district 
of plutonic and metamorphic rocks; a district of sedi- 
mentary formations, and a district of alluvial deposits. 
By configuration, into a district of mountains, a district 
of stony or sandy plains, and a district of low watery 
plains. By natural productions, into a country of forests 
and fruit-trees, of olives, wine, corn, and pasturage, or of 
barren rocks; a country of mulberry, cotton, maize, 
sesame, tobacco, or of hardy labiate and composite 
plants, or barren clay, sand, pebbly or rocky plains ; and 
into a country of date-trees, rice and pasturage, or a land 
of saline plants, liquorice, reeds, sedges and rushes. 

The First District comprises the countiy of moun- 
tains and hills commonly called Taurus, and which is 




composed of many different chains. Strabo (lib. xvii., 
p. 520,) described Taurus as beginning to rise from Pam- 
phylia, and in advancing to the east, to send off two 
branches ; on one side, Amanus (Jawur Dagh), and on 
the other, Anti-Taurus (Agha Dagh). 

That part of Taurus which is above the plain of 
Tarsus and Adanah, commonly known as the Ramadan 
Oghlu mountains, is continued by the Durdun Dagh to 
the Jawur Dagh or Amanus ; but the direction of the 
two chains is different, as is also their structure and their 
geognostic relations. 

The southerly prolongation of Amanus is Rhossus 
(Jebel Akma), which terminates in the Jebel Kasserik, 
above Ras Khanzir, and Jebel Musah (Mons Pieria) above 

Taurus stretching east of Commagena (district of 
Ain Tab), separates Sophena (Kharput Dawassi), which is 
contained between Taurus and Anti-Taurus, (Strabo, 
lib. xi., p. 521,) from Osroene (district of Urfah), and 
then divides itself into three portions. The most nor- 
therly and highest are the Niphates (Asi Kur), in Acili- 
cene. The central chain comprises the Azarah Dagh and 
mountain country around the mines (Ma'den Gomush, or 
Kapan, and Ma'den Kapur). The more southerly is the 
antique Masius, and includes the Karadjia Daghli, the 
Jebel Tur*, and Baarem hills, extending to the Jezirah. 
To the south of these are the Babel and Sinjar ranges of 
hills, united by the isolated hill of Kuka, to the hills of 
Abdel Hassiz. 

* Tur is a true Syriac and Chaldaic word. It was the name given 
to the whole of that country of mountains, and which, as modified by 
the Romans, became Taurus. The word, significatiye of mountain, is 



Taurus consists of a central nucleus of granite, 
gneiss, and mica shist, associated with limestones and 
diorites (Ma'den Gomush), and diallage rocks (Dumbu- 
Dagh) ; of lateral formations of diallage rocks, serpen- 
tines, actynolite rock, steashists and slate clays, and of 
outlying sandstones and limestones. 

The Baarem hills are entirely composed of feldspatho- 
pyroxenic rocks (dolerites and basalts), and the Jebel Tur, 
of limestones with nummulites, limestones with pectin- 
ides and ostracea, and the chalk formation. 

Taurus, at Arganah and Ma'den Kapur, is composed 
of diallage and actynolite rock, with serpentines, steashists, 
red and black slate clays, with fossils ; and superimposed, 
alternating or outlying limestones and sandstones. 

Taurus at Azarah Dagh and Dawah Boini, which forms 

now only preserved in a small district, the inhabitants of which are 
Chaldeans, called Turai. The word has been confounded with ^^v 

Turk and Turkomen^ where the initial letter is different, as in J^ 
Tdur. The Arabs call Mount Sinai t^ Tur. The Persians have also 

^U tdr, a ridge of mountains. 

In connexion with the eastern progress of Celtic nations, there is 
much probability that Tiir has been propagated among western nations 
in a variety of modifications, which may be traced in Turan in Cau- 
casus ; Tauric Chersonesus ; the Sarmatian Tauri ; Thurgau ; Thurin- 
gian Forest; Die Tauren, the Higher Alps; Tyrol; Tours and Tou- 
raine, France ; Mam Tor in Derbyshire ; and the Tor or Tur in "Wales, 
a heap or pile. It is the same in the philosophy of the various deno- 
minations of well-known ruminants of various countries derived from 
the Taurine or Bisontine groups, as Thur, Tur, Toor, Deer, Stier and 
Steer, in the northern dialects of Europe, names for the Urus of 

B 2 


the watershed of Tigris and Euphrates, and is imme- 
diately above the sources of the first river, is formed of 
diallage rock, serpentines, steashists, and limestones. 

Taurus, in the Gul Dagh, near Arab-kir, and at 
Ayelf, near Divrigi, consists of feldspatho-pyroxenic 
rocks, alternating with or superimposed upon chalk. 

The Kara Bel mountains are composed of diallage 
rock and serpentines, with steashists and sandstones. 

The Chamlu Bel consist of mica shist, actynolite and 
diallage rock, steashists, and limestone. 

The Kushanli Dagh, of mica shist, serpentines, and 

The Aklo Dagh, north of Tokat, is a country of 
mica shist, succeeded at Amasiyah by indurated chalk. 

The elevation of the crest of Taurus, or the summit- 
level, viewed as the mean between the height of the cul- 
minating points and that of the cols, ports, or passes, is at 
Ma'den Gomush, 5053 feet, at Dawah Boini 4453 feet, 
at Khutel (limestone and basalt,) 3379 feet, at the Gul 
Dagh 4808 feet; Ayeli mountain 5650 feet; Seliski 
(gypsum formation) 4250 feet; the crest of the Kara 
Bel attains an elevation of 5790 feet ; that of the Chamlii 
Bel 5260 feet, and the Akl6 Dagh 2900 feet. 

Between these mountain-chains are valleys or plains 
variously characterised. Between Masius and Ma'den 
Kapur is the plain of Diyar-Bekr, at an elevation of 2500 
feet, composed of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, above which 
rises the bold range of Kara Daghli, having a similar 
geognostic structure. 

Ridges of indurated chalk separate this plain from 
the mountain district of Arganah and Ma'den Kapur. 

Between the latter and the Dawah Boini is the culti- 


vated valley of Alendah, and the upland lake called G6rjik 
G61i, at an elevation of 4453 feet. 

Beyond the Dawah Boini is a fertile valley, with tri- 
butary to the Murad Su, at an elevation of 3260 feet, 
and bounded to the west and north-west by limestone 
rocks, on the summit of a knoll, amidst which, at an 
elevation of 5032 feet, is Kharput, the Roman Carcathio- 
certa. Beyond is a plain of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, 
terminated by the chalk-hills of Khutel (3379 feet.) 

Between Ma'den Gomush or Kapan, and the Gul 
Dagh, is an upland of chalk and feldspatho-pyroxenic 
rocks (2280 feet.) Arab Kir is in a narrow valley (3530 
feet). Beyond the Ayeli, (a country of feldspatho- 
pyroxenic rocks and chalk,) is the narrow valley of Be- 
rastik (4295 feet,) while the wide and fertile plain of 
Divrigi is only 3116 feet. 

From the Kara Bel mountains to Suaz is an undu- 
lating country of sandstones, marls, and gypsum ; at 
Kotni 4050 feet, at Suaz, 3894. Beyond Suaz or Sivas 
is an upland of fresh-water limestone, out of which rises 
the isolated cone of Yuldus Dagh. The valley of Karim 
(3328 feet) leads the way to the Chamlu Bel (5260), 
beyond which is the cultivated plain of Baulus (3338), 
bounded by the Kushanli Dagh to the north, at the foot 
of which is the deep valley of the Kisil Irmak, and the 
town of T6kat, at an elevation of only 1577 feet. 

The mica shist country rises again in the Akl6 Dagh 
to 2900 feet, and upwards, and sinks at Amasiyah (valley 
of Kisil Irmak) to 1048 feet. 

The structure of the Asi Kur, or Niphates, which are 
probably the highest chain of Taurus, rising above the 
line of perpetual snow (10,000 feet ?) remains yet unde- 


The Cilician Taurus, or mountains above Tarsus, pre- 
sent us with a rock composed essentially of limestone, 
but containing mica as an essential constituent, (the cipo- 
lin of Alex. Brongniart,) of indurated or compact hard 
granular chalk, and a variety of tertiary deposits. The 
flanks of the Ramadan Oghlu, between the pass called 
Kule Boghaz and the district of Sis, are composed of 
tertiary sandstones. At Sis, limestones and slate clay are 
succeeded, near Kara Sis, by serpentines and steashists. 

On the plain are isolated rocks of indurated chalk, 
with castles (Sis, Anazarba, Tum, Shah Maran, etc.) 

The Durdun Dagh is composed of towering and 
pointed mountains of mica shist, quartz rock, and quartz 
shist, with outlying formations of clayslate, steashist, 
chlorite slate, hornblende rock, and hornblende shist, 
limestones, and sandstones. 

The Agha Dagh above Mar'ash consists of diallage 
rocks and serpentines, capped by chalk and sandstone. 

The subalpine country between Taurus and the plains 
of Syria is composed of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, which 
occur in the valley of Aksii, and in other places between 
Mar'ash and Ain-Tab ; also at Ufa Jaklay, and in the 
valley of Bekir Karasu, ultimately crossing Euphrates 
between Rum-Kal'ah and Someisat. The same formar 
tions are also largely developed at Killfs. The re- 
mainder of the country is occupied by indurated or soft 
chalk and sandstones. 

The subalpine country between Taurus and the plains 
of Mesopotamia presents us with the same features. 
Feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, rising in cones between 
Someisat and Urfah; forming black and stony deserts 
north-east of Urfah ; constituting hilly ranges at Kara^ia 
Daghli; forming plains s^t Diyar-Bekr, and {(t Jeisirah, 


low hills at Seri\J9 and ultimately sweeping round to 
Euphrates south of Bir ; the remainder of the country 
being for the most part occupied by chalk formations. 

Amanus and Bhossus are composed of diallage rooks 
and serpentines, associated in the north with diorites and 
quartz rock, and having upon the flanks chalk and sand-* 
stones, and feldspatho-pyroxenio rocks (valley of Karasu 
and of Afrin). 

Jebel Musah is of similar geognostic structure, and is 
separated, like Bhossus (Jebel Akma), from Casius (Jebel 
el Akra) by the valley of the Orontes, amidst which, how- 
ever, towers the rocky hill of St. Simon, effecting a near 
junction of the several ranges of hills. St. Simon, the 
hills of Antioch, and Casius, are similarly composed of 
diallage rock, supporting conide limestones, siliceous 
limestones, gypsum, and other tertiary rocks ; but in the 
valley of the Orontes, at Swediyah, are pliocene deposits, 
tilted up by the same plutonic formations. 


The climate of Taurus presents us with cold winters*, 
with much snow, and hot smnmers. In some of the 
valleys the natives themselves complained of excessive 
summer heats; more particularly at Amasiyah and 
Kapan. Diyar-Bekr, which is on an upland, is also said 
to be very hot. 

The influence of warm days and cold frosty nights in 
spring is to forward vegetation, and yet preserve the 
snow. In crossing the Mar'ash hills (February 26, 1886,) 
the snow was from two to three feet deep, and so hard 

• At Ain-Tab, January 15, 1836^ the thermometer^ at seven o'clock 
in the morning, in a sheltered situation, fell to 5^ Fi^., or 27° below 
fireeaang point. 


as to bear a horse, yet in occasional bare spots, crocuses 
were in flower, and arachnides running about. At the 
same time of the year, in sheltered valleys. Daphne, 
Euphorbise, and bright and various coloured anemones, 
were in full bloom. In March, the almond-tree, pear, 
medlar, and laburnum, are in blossom in the valleys. In 
May 1837, roses blooming at Amasiyah (1048 feet) were 
an object of surprise to people living at a day's journey 
firom that spot. 


The most remarkable feature in the vegetation of 
Taurus is the abundance of trees, shrubs, and plants, in 
the northern, and their comparative absence in the 
southern, districts. 

The Masius is woody in parts; such, for example, 
are a few districts in the Baarem, and in the Jebel Tur, 
near Nisibin, from whence, it has been supposed, Trajan 
drew the wood for the construction of his fleet. In the 
valleys of the hilly country north of Mardln, there is 
also some, but not much, wood. Around Arganah and 
Ma'den there is none. The Kirtchti and Gul Dagh hills 
are equally barren. From the summit of Ayeli, pine and 
fir forests are first visible in the distance, and they ulti- 
mately cover the Kara Bel and the Chamlti Bel, as the 
latter name would indicate. 

Amanus, Rhossus, and Casius are, however, well 
wooded, and it is the same with regard to the Ramadan 
Oghlu and the Dtirdun Dagh. 

The forest trees are, for the most part, Pinus pinea 
(Kule Boghaz, Chamlu, and Kara Bel), Pinaster Halep- 
ensis (Amanus, Durdun Dagh), Quercus cerris, pedun- 
ata and sessiflora, Gastanea vesca, Omus Europsea, O. 


rotundifolia, Alnus cordifolia, Corylus cotuma, Cicer 
moDspessuIanum, Quercus ilex, suber, segilops, conifera, 
infectoria, Acer pseudo-platanus, Fraxinus parvifolia, F. 

On the flanks of forests or isolated, are, Ceratonia 
siliqua, Cercis siliquastrum, Mespilus pyracantha, Prunus 
laurocerasus. By the banks of streams, Tamarix gallica, 
Nerium oleander, Platanus orientalis (frequent at springs), 
Alnus cordifolia ; and in shrubberies and low woodland, 
Cupressus sempervivens, Juniperus Phoenicia, J, macro- 
carpa, Myrtus communis, Pistacia terebinthus. Genista 
scoparia, G. tinctoria. Viburnum minus. Arbutus unedo. 
Ilex aquifolium, Ostrya vulgaris. Daphne Pontica, D. 
sericea, Buxus sempervivens, spiny Eleagnus, Bryonia 
Cretica, Dianthus arboreus. Clematis orientalis, C. vitaJba, 
Cistus incanus, Jasminum fruticans, Lonicera periclyme- 
nium, Bhamnus alatemus, R. paliurus, Poterium spinosum. 
The Phillyreae {P. latifolia and P. angmtifolia) only show 
themselves on the north side of Taurus, and the Rhodo- 
dendrons (jB. Ponticuniy and H. maximum) first appear 
beyond the Chamlu Bel. The Heaths are rare; Erica 
arborea flourishes near Sis, and E. scoparia in the vale 
of Antioch, etc. 

Among the useful and cultivated plants of Taurus 
may be noted the vine, the fig-tree, almond-tree, the 
olive, wheat, Triticum spelta, Hordeum hexastichon, H. 
distichon. Gall-nuts are gathered chiefly from Q. infec- 
toria, Q. segilops, and Q. conifera. Pears, apples, apri- 
cots, are abundant. The roots of Astragalus christianus 
and Crambe orientalis are eaten. The Rhus cotumus is 
used for tanning skins red, the Rhamnus catharticus and 
Valantia articulata for yellow, 


To have rendered this physical sketch of the various 
regions of Taurus more complete, it would have been 
necessary to introduce a notice of its animals, both wild 
and domestic, and also of its various inhabitants ; but the 
facts that I have hitherto obtained upon those subjects 
are so scanty compared with so vast a field of inquiry, 
that I willingly postpone it to a future time, hoping to 
be more satisfactory in these general indications, when 
applied to the plains. 

The Second District includes all the territory which 
extends from 37° North latitude to 34°, and comprises the 
plains of Syria, of Mesopotamia, and of the country east 
of Tigris extending to the Kurdish mountains. 


The whole of this country consists of cretaceous and 
supra-cretaceous deposits, here and there interrupted by 
plutonic rocks of the feldspatho-pyroxenic family. 

The chalk is indurated, compact, granular, or saccha- 
roidal, at the foot of Taurus, as far as the parallel of 
Rum'kalah on Euphrates to Urfah in the west and 
Mardin, in the east of Mesopotamia, to the hills of 
Rabba Ormuz and Baziyan, east of Tigris, and to Kills 
and Ain-Tab in Syria. It is succeeded by soft white 
chalk with flints, and upper yellow fissile chalk, which 
extends along Euphrates to the parallel of Balis, where 
marles and gypsum are superimposed by flint breccia and 
siliceous sandstone. I do not know the exact western 
boundary, but indurated limestones, belonging to the 
supra-cretaceous series, and associated with feldspatho- 
pyroxejaic rocks at Jisr Sogheir, and at Mar'a^b, form 


the whole of the hills coursing by Annanas as far as to 
Kal'at el Mudik. 

To the east, the hills of Rabba Ormiiz, which limit 
the plains, are formed of indurated supra-cretaceous lime- 
stones. It is the same with the Maklub and Ain el 
Safira hills near the Zab river, with the hills at Bomaspan, 
and with the Khalkhalan, bounding the district of Ko'i 
Sanjak, and continued to the south by the Baziyan and 
the forest-clad Kara Dagh. 

In the southern part of the Persian Apennines, the 
Zagros and Avroman chain (diallage and serpentines) are 
succeeded by the Azmir or Jioz^h hills, of which the 
culminating point is the Pir Omar Giidrun. The valley 
of Suleimaniyeh (2278 feet) separates the Azmir Dagh 
from the Dagh Masaragh (supra-cretaceous limestones)^ 
and this again is separated by the valley of Aley (2490 
feet) from the Baziyan. Beyond this is a country of red 
sandstones, with conglomerates, attaining an elevation of 
2246 feet at Khan 'Ishr, and flanked near Kerkuk, by 
the Karachuk Dagh, which leave the Tigris at the 
parallel of Erbil, and passing by Altun Kupri and Kerkuk, 
join the Kufri hills at Dakuk or Taok. Their structure 
presents fresh-water limestones, gypsum, calcareous 
gypsum, and sands and sandstones, with bitumen, naph- 
tha, sulphur, and salt deposits; and they contain the 
burning fountains of Abii Geger or Kerkuk Baba, at an 
elevation of 543 feet. 

The Taok and Kufri hills are succeeded by the 
Zengabad range of red sands and sandstones, capped 
with limestone breccia, and this by the Hamerun hills, 
uniformly from Tigris to the Karun at Hawaz, composed 
of red saliferous and gypsiferous sands, and sandstones. 


On Tigris, the limestones of Rabba Onnuz are suc- 
ceeded by red sands and sandstones, which occupy the 
plains, to near Musul, where they are succeeded by cal- 
careous gypsum and gypsum, and cerithia and fresh- 
water limestones, with sulphur (Musul), and bitumen 
and sulphur (Hamam All), and at Uslan and Selami 
marles and coarse gypsum, superimposed on a coarse pec- 
tinide limestone. 

At Kara Chtik, the prolongation on Tigris of the 
Kara Chuk Dagh are, limestones, sandstones, and gypsum, 
and at the prolongation of the Hameriin, red sand and 
sandstones ; beyond which is a pebbly, clayey, or sandy 

On Euphrates, at Abd Bara and Ja'ber (25 miles), 
gypsum and marls supersede the chalk of Balis. At 
Surieh and Thapsacus (33 miles), these are succeeded by 
fresh-water limestones; and on the right bank, below 
Rakkah and opposite to the forest of 'Aran (24 miles), 
gypsums regain their original developement. 

At the Bushlr hills, at Zenobia or Z^lebi (79 miles), 
the marles and gypsum are covered by breccia and sele- 
nitic sands, upon which are superimposed feldspatho- 
pyroxenic rocks. These hills extend to Palmyra, and 
give origin to those contrasted configurations which 
furnish springs, and afforded a site for a city in the 

At Rahabah, or Rehoboth (101 miles), the marles 
and gypsum are covered by sands, marles, breccia, fossi- 
liferous marles, and brecciated limestone. 44 miles 
below, at Salaylah, the same limestone, superimposed 
upon numerous beds of gypsum and marles, forms a dry 
and stony wilderness. * 


At Irzah (59 miles), polypiferous clays and bituminous 
marles are associated with the gjpsum formation, and at 
'Anah (70 miles), compact pectinide and cerithia lime- 
stones separate this great formation of gypsum and marles 
from a superior one, which extends from Haddisa to 
Mesjid Sandablyah, a distance of nearly 150 miles. In 
this great extent, it is associated with sandstones and 
ironstones, chloritous and green marles, feroxidated or 
red marles, bituminous marles, and saliferous clay. At 
Hit it is associated with yellow magnesian limestone, and 
furnishes the celebrated fountains of bitumen and naphtha; 
and is finally succeeded beyond the Mesjid Sandabiyah on 
the one hand, and the Pylse of Xenophon on the other, 
by the low land of pebbles, clay, and soil which constitute 
the third region. 

Physical Characters. 

The character of the plains in the second zone, varies 
with the altitude and latitude ; as well as with the quality 
of the soil, and the presence or absence of moisture. 

The upland of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks which 
extends from Jezirah to Tel Sakhan near Nisibln, and 
which has a mean elevation of 1550 feet, is a stony wil- 
derness, amidst which there is little or no cultivation, and 
where nevertheless numerous flocks of sheep and cattle 
obtain a scanty support during a large portion of the 
year. Villages tenanted chiefly by Kurds, but some by 
Chaldseans, are not infrequent. Wolves are numerous. 

The great plains of northern Syria, averaging a mean 
elevation of 1300 feet, as determined by Mr. Thomson's 
line of levels, the plains of northern Mesopotamia, from 
Uriah to Bakkah, and from Nisibin to El Hathr, and the 


Chaldean plain east of Nineveh, that of Erbil and of 
Altun Kupri, present pretty nearly shnilar characters, a 
nearly uniform level, with a soil possessing good agricul- 
tural qualities, but barren from want of irrigation. 

The exceptions to the general rules are where the 
plains are intersected by hills, or ranges of hills, as in the 
Maklub and Ain el Safra on the Chaldean plain, the 
Kara Chuk Dagh on that of Erbil and Ain el Safra. 
The hills round Musul, the Hamerim at El Hathr, the 
Babel mountains south of Jezirah, the Sinjar hills inha- 
bited by tribes of robber Kurds, the Abdel Hassiz, the 
residence of the Millis Turkomen, the hills of Seruj, and 
those north of Aleppo. The hills of Kara Bambtich, and 
the Bushir range in Palmyrene. 

The other differences are the comparative fertility of 
some places, which, exposed to temporary inundations, at 
the head of rivers or rivulets, on the banks of the same, 
or artificially irrigated, are by these advantages of posi- 
tion, the permanent abode of agricultural tribes, and the 
seat of cultivation and prosperity, or the repair of the 
nomadic Arab and Turkoman, where at certain seasons, 
he leads his flock, sometimes from very distant spots. It 
is no uncommon thing for the Shamar Arab tribe to 
pitch their tents in winter in the plains of Seleucia, and 
in summer to overrun the fertile district of El Hathr. 

Examples of these fertile localities are abundant. 
Such, in north Syria, are the plains watered by the 
Koweik or Chains, by the Sajur and the Kesrin, and 
east of Aleppo by the Ain el Z^h^b. 

Such, in Mesopotamia, are the plains of UrKh and 
Harran, watered by numerous streams. The plain of 
Seruj is hill enclosed, and watered and inundated like 


Harran, by various rivulets, designated as the lUus el Ain 
el Arab, and contains, over an area of twenty square 
miles, upwards of forty large villages, which are aban- 
doned during a part of the year. With the true Ras el 
Ain, the Ressaina of the Romans, I am not acquainted, 
but it is from all reports, a similarly fertile spot, as are 
many situations in the yet unexplored Sinjar. The rich 
lands of Nisibin are at the head of the Khabur, and in 
the district of El Hathr, the waters of the same river 
were led by an artificial canal into the Tigris. This was 
at the time and posterior to when riches and power 
brought against the Atrenians the armed bands of Trajan 
and of Severus. The plains of the east of Tigris are 
watered by the Kliozar, the Zab, the river of Altun 
Kupri, and many others ; Erbil, at an elevation of 742 
feet, is supplied by artificial channels brought from a 
rivulet, which flows to the south-east of the town. 


The climate of these plains is characterized by great 
dryness, combined with very great variations in the tem- 
perature of the air*. From the Mediterranean to the 
Tigris, there is an increase of cold in the same paral- 
lels, from west to east; or as De Humboldt would 
express it, the curves of isocheminic lines bend to the 
south in the east, and to the north in the west. This is 
not the case, however, in the plains east of Tigris, which, 
sheltered by the Kurdish mountains, have a more tempe- 
rate winter. The influence of Taurus, clad for so many 
months with snow, is considerable in reducing the winter 

* In snininer, in the month of August^ the thermometer of Fahr- 
enheit ¥ras observed as high as 115'' in the shade^ and in winter as 
low as 12®. 


temperature, and on the plains of North Syria, and of 
Mesopotamia, from the want of protecting hills, causes 
the vegetation to be in reality less southern than that of 
Sicily and of Andalusia. At the same time, the long 
extent of littoral mountains, Amanus, Casius, and Leba- 
non, add to these unfavourable circumstances by impeding 
the passage of mild air from the Mediterranean. Not- 
withstanding these circumstances, the direct heat of the 
sxm, increased by radiation and equality of level, is almost 
without a moderating influence, for evaporation is nearly 
null, and hence where the winter temperature is so low, 
the summer heats are intense. It is on this account that 
there are few annual and tender plants, while the woody 
and tough stems of vivaceous species resist better to such 
opposite influences. 


In the steppes of Russia and Tartary, vegetation is 
characterized by Robinia frutescens, Hedysarum grandi- 
flonim, Astragalus Austriacus, A. sulcatus, Oxytropis cau- 
data, O. pilosa; several species of Artemesia, Prunus 
cerasus, and P. nana. In the plains of Bokhara, the 
genera Astragalus and Robinia predominate ; after these, 
Tamarix, and the family of Boraginese, which furnishes 
Anchusa, Myosotis, Onosma, Echium, and Lithospermum ; 
and that of Cruciferae, which furnishes species of Hesperis, 
Cheiranthus, Sinapis, Arabis and Raphanus. 

In both, liliaceous and bulbous plants occur in spots 
favourable to their propagation. They belong chiefly to 
the genera Hypoxis, Iris, Tulipa, Anthericum, Allium, 
Omithogalum, Asphodelus, &c. 

Isolated among these are species of Sedum, Semper- 
\ivum, and Euphorbise, while over the sand, the Calligonum 


of Pallas, like the Gallenia of Africa, throws its rampant 

Under similar circumstances of atmospheric vicissi- 
tudes, and with similar characters of soil, analogous forms 
of vegetation are scattered over large geographical tracts, 
or are repeated at great distances from one another. The 
reeds, sedges, and rushes of our own climates have their 
generic representatives in the marshes of Babylonia, of 
India, and Guyana ; and still more closely allied, is the 
vegetation of the plains of Assyria with that of Bokhara 
and Russia. 

The Astragalus austriacus, and A. sulcatus of the 
steps, and the Astragalus christianus and A. dumetorum 
of Asia Minor, are represented by the Astragalus traga- 
cantha and A. poterium, the Oxytropis caudata and 
pilosa by O. uncata, and the Robinia frutescens by the 
Mimosa agrestis, among the most general and frequent 
plants of the plains. 

For two months in the year, namely, October and 
November, vegetation is at a stand still, every thing is 
burnt up, and no new forms appear ; but after this period, 
the Nile clouds from the Lebanon in Syria, and reverses 
in the mountain temperatures to the north and the east 
over Mesopotamia and Adiabene, bring down moderate 
but refreshing rain. The brown and fallow colour of the 
soil changes, Graminse begin to spread and increase, and 
notwithstanding the subsequent frost and storm, some 
CompositsB bud, but do not flower. But the succession of 
vegetation is kept up by those families which have suc- 
culent roots, nodes, or bulbs, which preserve moisture so 
as to ensure life even amidst the most arid soil. Sleep- 
ing during the summer heats, they awake to activity with 



the first rains, and some send forth prematurely their 
leaves, or even their buds, in October, Among these are 
a Colchicum, a Tulipa, a Crocus, an Ixia, and an Arum. 
They are soon, however, enveloped in snow, or blasted by 
the vdntry winds; tiU early in spring, when the same 
precocious plants make their appearance with all that 
vivid beauty of colour and variety of forms which have 
lent to the poet and the painter, their not always 
fabulous pictures of the East 

The species which constitute the flora of spring, 
belong mostly to the families Amarylloideae, Asphodelese, 
Liliaceae, MelanthacesB, and an Orchida. 

The plants of summer are particularly distinguished 
by woolly, thorny, prickly, and aculeated species. Among 
these the Compositse are most numerous in individuals 
and species. The most frequent genera are Cnicus, Car- 
duus, Centaurea and Calcitrapa, which cover whole plains. 

Papilionaceae are also frequent, although their small 
forms render them less striking. But the Labiatse furnish 
the true atomatic plants of the plains ; the most numerous 
species belong to the genera Stachys, Th3mius, Sideritis, 
Satureja and Origanum. The absence of trees on these 
plains is a phenomenon difficult to account for, but origi- 
nates possibly in an only occasional supply of moisture, 
and the great similarity of condition of such extensive 
tracts of land by which, had one form been propagated,^ its 
diffiision would have been so great as to make a continu- 
ous forest of Northern Mesopotamia and Syria. Hence 
on these great plains, there are but succulent and herba- 
ceous biennials, or an ephemeral vegetation. A Pyrus 
grows in fallow. One species of Salix, and one of Rubus, 
Sumac {Ehus coriaria) grew on the banks of Euphrates. 


The most common plants on cultivated lands were 
Glycyrrhiza glabra and G. echinata, Mimosa agrestis, 
Euphorbia pyrrhus ? 

The Platanus orientalis, near springs and tombs, 
attains an enormous size. One at Bir measured thirty- 
six feet in circumference; and one at Daphne, near 
Antioch, measured forty-two feet in girth, and was pro- 
bably upwards of a thousand years old. 

The useful plants which occur in this zone, either cul- 
tivated or not, are still very numerous. Among the 
grains are wheat {Houta)^ barley {Shaeir)^ addes {Erviim 
lens)^ YiumiRQ^ {Cicer arietanu7n\ tul {Vicia f(iba\ ]\\h^n 
{Lathy rus sativtis), kishna ( Vicia nissdiana), maash (PAa- 
seohis mawimus)^ dura {Holchtis s(yt'ghum)y fusa {Medicago 
sativa). The Arabs also eat Holchus bicolor. 

The quantity of pot-herbs now cultivated where Euro- 
pean plants have been much introduced, is considerable, 
but as more or less characteristic, I may notice, jibbes 
{Ctunimis citruUtis), bat^ch {Cucumis melo\ baydinjam {Sold- 
num melengena)^ bamiyah {HiMscm esctdenttis)^ kurrah, 
kusa 'sifr, and squash, species of cucurbito, &c. 

Among the fruits are, zeitun (Oka Europea), fistuk 
(Pistada o^mnarum\ tut {Moras alAa\ tut shamy {Mwnis 
niger)^ roman (Punica granatum)^ tin {Ficus cmica), kirraz 
{Pnmus cerams\ mish ixi\^{Pruims arwew/am), Amygdalus 
persica; azaz, hough, kulb al tair, three varieties of plums ; 
tuffa {Pyrus malm\ nijaz {P. communis), sfirgle {Pyrus 
cydonia), kirrasi {Corrms mas), luz {Amygdalm communis), 
juz {Jvglans regia), binduk {Coryhis aveUana), anab {Bham- 
nus ziziphus), abu furwa {Fagus castanea), sinnuber {Pinus 
€embra)f nuts, etc. 

Among cultivated plants, Nicotiana tabacum {tuttun), 

c 2 


simsim {Sesamum orientale)^ khurwa {Ricinus communis)^ 
kimbis {Cannabis sativa)^ hulby {Trigonella fcenum grce^ 
cum), kurtim {Carthamm tinctorius), kutn {Gossypium 

Among the useful vegetables furnished by the fields 
are, kibbar (Caparis spinosa), al sarral tur {Borago qfficina^ 
lis), hubeisi (Malva rotundifolia), hornaid {Runted? acetosa), 
rishad el moi {Sysimbrium nasturtium), kimmai {Lycoper^ 
do7i tuberosum), zabre {Satureja hortensis), hurdle {Sinapis 
orientalis), shik akul {Tordylium syriacum), siis {Glycyr^ 
rhiza glabra), hillcun (Asparagus officinale). The leaves of 
the Aru7n colocasio (kolcas), are used as paper. On the 
Chaldaean plain, east of Musul, a species of scorzonera 
abounds, and affords a plentiful nutriment. Gum traga- 
canth is obtained from several species of Astragalus, in 
Persia according to Olivier from A. verus, but at Aleppo 
it is obtained from A. tragacantha, A. alopecuroides, A. 
guttatus, A. poterium, and apparently from other species, 
for twelve are met with in the neighbourhood. Henna 
is obtained from the Lawsonia inermis. 

On the Euphrates, the Arabs eat leaves of several 
species of Lactuca, Sonchus, and Cardui, and the roots of 
Cepa allium, a Scilla, and an Ixia, also the bulb of a crocus, 
which is as sweet as an almond. The Expedition often 
used a species of wild atriplex as a vegetable ; it eats like 


The zoology both of Taurus and of the plains, 
although known in its leading features, is quite unex- 
plored in some of its most interesting departments, 
more particularly in those peculiar forms of Rodentia 


which are most characteristic of the animalization of the 

The monkey, whose country begins about 38'' N. lat., 
is unknown in Assyria and Babylonia ; but it is not cer- 
tain if it is not an extinct animal, for an able Hebrew 
scholar has stated to me, that the doleful creatures which 
are prophetically announced as tenanting fallen Babylon, 
ought to be read as monkeys or baboons. 

The bat tribe are numerous. The genera Rhinolophus 
and Nycterix have their representatives. In the " Castle 
of Stars," on Euphrates, the Rhinolophus was particularly 
abundant., and fed on two species of Tenebrio, T. moli- 
tor and T. obscurus, and a Dermestes like our vulpinus. 

Among the Insectivora were only found, Erinaceus 
auritis of Pallas, and Sorex pusillus. 

The Carnivora form, it may be said, on some accounts, 
the most important family in these countries. The lion 
is met with in the lower part of Euphrates and Tigris. 
The foot-prints were first observed at the Khabur, but 
Lieutenant Lynch, I. N., met with one as far north as 
Balis. A lion from the banks of Tigris, in the possession 
of Colonel Taylor, resident at Baghdad, had not the fur of 
the Isabella yellow colour attributed to the Arabian and 
Persian species, but was as brown as the Bombay lion. 

A maneless variety of the hunting tiger, and distin- 
guished by some natural historians firom the Felis jubata 
by the title of F. venatica, the Faahd of the Arabs, is not 
uncommon in the lower districts of Tigris and Euphrates. 
A specimen, exhibiting all the docility of the Persian 
Yuse, also existed at Baghdad, and notwithstanding the 
want of retractile claws, climbed trees with facility. But 
the most conmion of the cat tribe was the Felis chaus of 


Guldens tad, figured in Jardine's " Naturalist's Library," 
(Maramifene, vol. ii.,) and which the author has ap- 
proached, when hunting, to within a few paces. He has 
also seen near Mar ash a larger animal of the same family, 
which may have been the Felis pardus, said to inhabit 
Amanus and Lebanon. It is called nimer by the moun- 
taineers. The Felis pardina of Oken and Temminck 
inhabits Amanus and Taurus. On Tchokur Ovah, near 
Missisah, Colonel Chesney, Mr. Staunton, and the 
author met, in hunting, in one day, eight individuals of 
this species. 

The lynx, (wushak) inhabits the woody districts. The 
striped hyaena is a most common animal in all kinds of 
countries, sheltering itself behind either a wall or a shrub. 
A white variety was also observed. The wolf (dib or tlb), 
is most frequent in Taurus. It is replaced in the plains 
by the Tartarian wolf, and both are rare in the south. 
The black wolf (Cams lycaon)^ was seen on the banks 
of Sajur. The jackal {Canis aureus), so frequent" an 
animal in the East, appears to present some differences in 
Syria, on Euphrates, and in Persia, which have not yet 
been well determined. Foxes (taaleb) are common. 
On Euphrates, the species was always Canis corsac, but 
in Taurus, it was our common Canis vulpes. 

Bears are not uncommon in Taurus and in the Per- 
sian Apennines. In Kurdistan, a black bear is called 
Manga Mai*. Another species is called Gam^sh. At 
Musul, a brown bear called Duba, is also brought from 
the mountains. The black-eared lynx (Kara Kulak) is 
also an inhabitant of the same hills ; and a village in 
Amanus, between Kara Kapu and Missisah, is named after 
the same animal. The Herpestes ichneumon of Olivier is 


an interesting quadruped of the same family. The pole^ 
cat abounds near Aleppo. It is called eben aarse. 

Cats, ktith, or kutta, are of three kinds, the common 
domestic cat, a mixed breed, and the Persian cat (kutta 
Ajemy). The dogs are the bazaar, or town dog, Tur- 
koman dog, with long ears and long soft hair, and shep- 
herd's dog. There are also crosses of dog and wolf, and 
dog and fox. 

The ratel, the sable, and the genet, are met with in 
Taurus and other mountain districts. The otter (Lutra 
vulgaris f) occurs on Euphrates, Tigris, Karun, &c. 

The order of Bodentia presents us with the common 
beaver {Castor fiber)^ found by the Expedition in Eu- 
phrates and Khabur. Spermophilus citillus, Arctomys 
marmotta, Cricetus vulgaris, and the great and common 
donnice, are tenants of the mountain forests. 

Different jerboas inhabit the plains; the most common 
are, Dipus gerboa, D. jaculus, D. sagitta, and D. pygmaeus, 
besides other undetermined species. The Aspalax typhlus 
{Georychus typMm)^ the mole of the ancients, abounds 
more especially in the plains of Kurdistan. There is a 
mustela, perhaps M. Sarmatica, on the plains, and several 
species in Taurus, and Mustela martes in Chamlii Bel 
ami Kara Bel mountains. 

The forest of 'Aran, on Euphrates, furnished the 
author with a new species of Gerbillus, diflfering from the 
G. tamaricinus of Pallas, in being with tail seventeen 
inches in length. 

The common rat of the country appears to be the 
Mus decumanus. Mice are numerous and various. The 
mouse observed at Bir was an undescribed species. 

Squirrels are abundant in the woods, the species 


not determined. Porcupines, called kimfud, are also fre- 
quent. There are two hares, the Turkoman hare, which 
haunts the plains, and the hare of the desert, with long 
hair and ears. Rabbits (arneb) are rare. 

The order of Pachydermata is represented by the 
wild boar, common in every spot at all adapted for its 
existence ; and by the wild horse of Mesopotamia, sup- 
posed to be the Equus khur, or Eq. hemionus, but the 
Expedition could not obtain a skin or specimen. 

The chief domesticated horses are of two breeds; 
the Arab, finely limbed, slender, hardy, and fleet; and 
the Turkoman, of a larger size, and stronger make. 

The asses are of a common breed, but larger than in 
Britain ; an improved breed, tall, delicately limbed, swift 
and easy in pace ; and lastly, the Damascus ass, with very 
long body, long ears, smooth skin, and dark colour. 

At the head of Ruminantia is the camels, of which 
the first in point of importance and utility is the Arabian 
camel {Camelus d/romedariiis\ with one hunch, and palo 
fiiwn-coloured brown fur. The second is the Bactrian or 
Persian camel {Camelus BactTianus\ with two hunches, 
and plentiful hair on the upper part of the neck. The 
common Turkoman camel is a mule, the produce of the 
Arab and Bactrian camels, and found to be of great 
utility. It is larger, stouter, and more hairy than the 
others. Its common load is about four hundred pounds 
on each side, but there are some capable of carrying a 
much greater weight. It is less tractable, and less 
capable of enduring heat, than the Arab camel. 

There are two varieties of the Arab camel. 1st, the 
dromedary; the highest breed, slight make, cleanly 
limbed, hunch smaller, ambles with great agility^ used 


for war and expresses, and anything requiring haste or 

The common Arab camel is of light dun colour, 
seldom carries more than two hundred and fifty pounds 
on each side, and is content to browze along on thistles 
and prickly shrubs, and can bear the want of water to 
the greatest extent. 

Among the Cervidae, the fallow-deer {Ce^^vm dama\ is 
common in some parts of Taurus, more especially in the 
Kara Bel and Chamlu Bel. It is said that the stag 
{Cervus eh/phus)^ occurs in the same districts. The roe- 
buck {Cervm capreolm\ is not uncommon. Of antelopes 
there are several species; one, of the mountains, back and 
neck of a dark-brown colour, bounds with surprising 
agility. The limbs of the Ghazal {Antilope dorcas)^ the 
antelope of the plains, are not so cleanly turned, it is of 
a lighter colour, is not so active, but is very fleet, and 
gregarious. They are so tame as often to feed in flocks 
with sheep. On Tigris, near Kut Aamarah, A. subgut- 
terosa replaces A. dorcas. 

There are many varieties of goats. The goat of Syria 
has long brown hair, short black horns, bent downwards, 
and pendulous ears. The goat of Taurus, commonly 
called Angora goat, is generally white, with buff-coloured 
ears and yellow horns, hair fine and curled. The Kur- 
distan goat has long black hair, curled and silky, horns 
bent downwards, pendulous, black ears tipped with 
brown, as are also sometimes the legs. Among the wild 
species of this tribe, the Capra ibex, and I believe, from 
some horns seen at a forester's, the Capra Caucasicus, 
inhabit Taurus. 

The sheep are of two kinds ; the common Tartarian 


sheep, with enormous pendulous tail, weighing generally 
fifteen pounds, but sometimes much more ; the second is 
the Bedowin sheep (runnam), in which the tail is only 
somewhat larger and thicker than in our domestic breeds. 
The Ovis Ammon was observed at Azaz. 

The Bovidae present us with forms belonging to the 
Bubaline, the Bisontine, and the Taurine groups. The 
first is represented by the common buffalo {Bos buhalm\ 
most cared for by Turkomen and by the Arabs on Eu- 
phrates; the second by the bull and cow with hunch, 
also frequent on Euphrates ; and the third by the com- 
mon bull (al taur) and cow (al bukr), of which there 
are two varieties : the first of a large size, with a thin 
belly and long slender legs, the second smaller, and with 
short hams. 


The ei^tensive subject of the ornithology of the plains 
can only be treated of cursorily ; that of the northern 
parts of the plain associates itself with the ornithology of 
Taurus, and that of the southern portion is remarkably 
scanty. The type also in the northern parts is European, 
but the European birds of passage do not remain long, 
and the summer birds of passage take their departure in 

Species of the order Accipitres are particularly abun- 
dant. The Vultur percnopterus is common in almost all 
towns, where it lives in the shambles or the burial ground. 
The Vultur fiilvus was shot by Dr. Heifer at Bfr. Falco 
pssifragus is not uncommon. F. milvus sweeps across 
the plains. F. tinnunculus and F. gentilis (shahin) are 
brought up for the chase. 


Owls are frequent both in Taurus and in the chalk 
cliffs of Euphrates ; the species were, Strix bubo (bumi), 
S. flammea, S. passerina, S. uratensis. The crows were 
Cervus corax, C. corone (zagr), C. cornix, C. mpnedula, 

The green birds that dwell 
In radiant fields of asphodel. 

Garrulus pica came in October, Oriolus gracola de- 
parted same month. Besides these European species, 
there were some that were peculiar but undetermined. 
Coracias garrula (shikrak), and a Stumus (ztirzur), more 
brilliant than ours. 

Among the Insectivorous birds were Turdus musicus 
(dudge), T. morula (shahrfir), and three other European 
species, besides T. rufus, T. saxatilis, and T. roseus 
(smurmfir), the celebrated locust-bird of Pliny. Cinclus 
aquaticus, and one species of Edolius. 

There were few opportunities of studying the inte- 
resting group of Motacilla and Silvia. The Bulbul of 
Syria is our nightingale, but that of Persia is a Turdus. 
The Becafico is called Asfur el Tin, or fig sparrow. The 
Regulus is here a bird of passage ; Troglodytes Europaeus 
(Jlstis), and two species of Taxicola, are met with. 

Among the Granivorous birds, the genus Alauda 
furnished many species, among which A. arvensis (duUan) 
was the most rare, and A. cristata (kembr) the most com- 
mon. There were also A. alpestris, A. calendra (calan- 
dra), and A. Tartarica; Parus major and P. ater; Em- 
beriza hortulana (Ortulan) E. citrinella. The common 
sparrow follows even tents. Fringilla furnishes four or 
fiv6 species, among which Sukakia, the goldfinch. 

The Zygodactylous birds afford Cuculus c^norus 
(humam) ; the Scansorise are rare, except in the woods. 


The Yunx torquilla, and two species of Picus, constitute 
almost all. The Upupa epops (shibubuk), is common 
every where. 

Among the Alcyones, Merops apiaster (wurwar), and 
M. cajruio cephalus, whose holes in the earth are dug after 
by jackals. Of three species of Alcedo, none are Euro- 
pean. The Chelidones furnish two species of Hirundo, 
and the Cai)rimulgus Europaeus. The Coiumbse furnish 
about fourteen species, among which are C. risona (sit el 
rum) and C. testaceo incamata of Forskahl. 

Among the game birds are, one species of Lagopus, 
shot by Colonel Chesney near Bir. The most common 
on Euphrates and Tigris was Perdix Francolinus; on 
plains, Pterocles arenarius, in flocks of millions ; on rocks 
in plains, Perdix petrosa ; in Taurus, Perdix cinerea, P. 
rufa, P. graeca, also the black partridge. I have shot the 
Syrrhaptes Pallasii as far south as Kut Aamarah on Tigris. 
The quail is not common. In the woods are Phasianus 
Colchicus (djage), and another called dik busrauwy. 

The Cursores are forms peculiarly of the desert ; the 
most remarkable bird of this group, the Struthio camelus 
(naamey), is now rare in western Asia. Not so with the 
Great Bustard {Otis tarda)^ which is still very common. 
The bustards of Arabia and of Southern Mesopotamia 
are, however, suspected to be different birds from those 
of the first zone. 

The order of Grallatores affords many species of Gha- 
radrius, among which are several with spines to the wings, 
Tringa, Squatarola, and others ; four species of Scolopax, 
seven species of Ardea, two species of Ballus. Fulica 
porphyris was common on Euphrates, as was also Machares 


Among the Palmipedes are, Pelecanus onocrotalus, 
about ten Anseres, including Kara buttik {Anas nigra), 
Abu malak {A. clypeata\ Butt burri {A. boschas)^ and A. 
Sirsaeir of Forskahl. Mergus merganser, Colymbus auri- 
tus; on Euphrates, were two species of Lams, one of 
Procellarius, and a cormorant. 


Among the more remarkable fish are, the Aleppo eel 
(simmak Inglfz), described by Gronovius, {'^ Zoophylacitim, 
No. 402, Lugd. Bat. 1781,") by Dr. Solander and Sir 
E. Home, called Ophidium masbacambelus, two Siluri 
(babiige), Cobitis barbatula (kebudy), Barbus vulgaris 
(kirsin), the most common fish of Upper Euphrates and 
of the pond of Djami Ibrahim at Urfah ; Cyprinus cepha- 
lus (burak), several binnies, one at Aleppo, one of For- 
skahl, and the kellori of the natives, Muraena anguilla 
(simmak keiat), lake of Antioch; two species of carp, 
and one Cobitis, from the same. The celebrated black 
fish (Simmak el Aswad) is a Macropteronotus. Trout 
are common in Taurus. 


Reptiles are numerous in this zone. There occur two 
species of Testudo on the plains, one of which resembles 
T. graeca ; two species of Emys were found in Euphrates, 
and two of Trionyx, one in Euphrates and one in Orontes. 
Among ruins were three different species of Gecko, and 
the common chameleon in woody and sheltered districts. 
The Amphibia of the plain vary in their characters, ac- 
cording to the means of subsistence to which they are 



reduced ; they are chiefly Iguanidee and Lacertinidse, with 
not unfrequent Ophidia. Wherever rock, clay, or sand 
has the slightest tendency to vegetation, there insects 
prosper, and lizards make their appearance. The funda- 
mental forms assumed on the plains are large bodies and 
big heads, with a skin lubricated and defended from the 
burning sun by a natural exudation, The narrow, smooth, 
and long forms of lizards, do not prosper on sterile and 
arid spots, Agama, of the same species, reappear at 
intervals over large tracts of country, and they furnish on 
these plains nourishment to various Mammiferae and birds. 
It appears also that the numerous large non-venomous 
serpents which frequent these plains are fed by these 
insectivorous lizards. Vipers {Coluber) confine them- 
selves more to small Rodentia. 

On the more fertile and productive banks of Eu- 
phrates large species of Ameiva are common, and are 
even met with in the adjacent plains and among ruins, as 
at Rakkah*; and it is not certain if one of the tribe of 
Crocodilidse does not occur in Upper Euphrates. The 
Batrachia, which fiimish seven species in the rivulets of 
the upper districts, are unknown in the plains and on 
Lower Euphrates and Tigris. 


The Entomology of these extensive districts presents 
many features of great interest, but which yet demand 

* "Lacerti Arabics cubitales," says Pliny, lib. viii. 60; upon 
which Cuvier remarks^ the monitor is known to surpass that length. 
A specimen, captured at Balis, was, with the tail, two feet six inches 
in length. 


much investigation. Dr. HeMer made a considerable 
collection, more particularly on Euphrates, which will 
probably present entomologists with Eome new forms. 

The most characteristic during tht dry months are, 
Truxales, Locustae, and Acridium ; some itriped Lepido-* 
pterse, chiefly of the genus Maniola, also still lutter about. 
Four kinds of Pimelise occur on the most arid spots, two 
species are most common. After the rains, D?. Heifer 
obtained two hundred Coleoptera, among which many 
genera, supposed to be exclusively proper to the tem- 
perate and northern parts of Europe, or which have o^ly 
some representatives in a southern region, occur herb 
Such are the Brachyletrous beetles, of which seven hun- 
dred species belong to Britain, and of which forty species 
were found, and five species of Pselaphon, of which the 
type was considered Swedish. The Rev. Dr. Hope had 
questioned if there was a true Carabus on these plains ; 
Dr. Heifer considered as such Carabus Hemprishei, one 
of the most common insects of the plains. Melasomse 
and PimeliaresB are very numerous. The Gurculionides 
furnished sixty species ; Coccinellae were in abundance ; 
CrysomeUin* rare; the Lamemcomes also furnished a 
bad harvest. Aphodiee were particularly common, at 
certain seasons in flights like locusts. The types of 
Vri^ .re the Heterome™, amongst the«, KmelaS^ 


The remarkable features in descending Euphrates 
from the higher plains is the absence of all perennial 
shrubs on the hills. The chalk cliffs are covered with 
species of Sinapis and Brassica ; Accipitres, numerous in 
species in different places, are not so in the same locar 


lities. The Anas Nubics, a bird common on Euphrates, 
migrates from Dongoli and Nubia in spring. The vege- 
tation of spring wjvj found to be generally a few days in 
advance, on the eastern bank of the river, of that on tho 

The hilU of Kara Bambuch furnished an Amygdalua, 
and on t\Q highest part a scanty Prunus, also an Astra- 
galus, aid tho Mimosa agrestis. Tho meadows afforded 
Gramiiea;, Adonis, chamomile, Chrysanthemum, Erys- 
miu^j and other Tetradynamous species. Truffles are 
d»g up at the foot of hills five inches in depth. 

On the plains of Balis, the circumscription of a pecu- 
liar vegetation to different spots was remarkable ; some 
tracts were covered with Cochlearia, others with chamo- 
mile, some with pansies, and others with Anthoxanthum 
odoratum. Twenty-three now plants, first met at Balis, 
followed 140 miles down the river. The tamarisk began 
at Balis. 

Jungle, to the south of Balis, was formed of a species 
of poplar (Gharab of the Arabs), with lanceolate leaves, 
and which has been mistaken for a willow. A Lygeum 
and a Rubus, a Clematis and two Asparagina, with the 
tamarisk, wore the only other plants. In these jungles, 
far away from the habitations of men, sparrows build their 
nests in dense congregations. The Merops apiaster builds 
near, or in roads ; the earth being trod upon is harder, 
and less easily turned up by their enemies the jackals ; 
for the same reason they build on the vertical banks of 

South of Rakkah, in the forest of 'Aran, the mul- 
berry {Moras alha) first appears. At Zenobia, Umbellifera; 
begin to predominate. 'Anah is the most southern point 


of olive-trees, and the most northern for the date, with 
the exception of isolated trees, which are met with in the 
shelter of the bay of Iskenderun, At Jubbah and Ha- 
dfsah, the Graculus and turtle-doves nestle on groves of 
the same tree. 

The desert of Xenophon, extending from the Khabur 
or Araxes to Rehoboth, is still what it was in the Greek 
general's day, " fiill of wormwood ; and if any other kind 
of plants grow there, they have for the most part an 
aromatic smell." 

The tomentose and spiny plants were in part dis- 
missed on the alluvial plains of the third zone, and give 
way to crassulated and succulent genera ; but the phy- 
sical features of this interesting country, including Baby- 
lonia, Chaldsea, and Susiana, will be described hereafter. 

Rock Formations of the Basin of Euphrates, from 

I - 

Taurus to the alluvial Districts of Babylonu. 

Foot of Taurus. — ^The sedimentary deposits, which 
repose upon the plutonic and metamorphic rocks of 
Taurus, are, to the south, limestones, which belong to the 
cretaceous series, and present, in the neighbourhood of 
the mountaig-ehain, a compact subcrystalline limestone, 
of a mostly uniform hard texture, sometimes saccha- 
roidal, but, generally speaking, compact or granular. 
The characteristic fossils belonged to Terebratulse, Ostreae, 
Ananchytep, and Crinoidea. 

Formations along the course of Euphrates. — ^The course 




of Euphrates, is pretty nearly from the north-east to 
south-west, as far as to Rum-Kal'ah, where the river takes 
a direction to the east of south. From Somlesat south- 
ward, the rocks consist of soft cretaceous and marly beds, 
with a local formation of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks; 
but in a straight line from Taurus to Rum-Kal'ah, the 
succession of formations is as follows. 

Formaiions from Taurus to Rum^Kdtah. — Subcrystal- 
line limestone, compact, uniform, or slightly granular and 
splintery, in thin strata, the upper beds fossiliferous, having 
a high angle of inclination, much curved and contorted, 
and dipping in various directions, but most generally to 
the south-east. 

Granvlar Chalk. — ^This formation occupies the greater 
part of the country between the territory of Ain-Tab and 
Mar'ash, and is accompanied by feldspatho-pyroxenic 
rocks. In the present line it occupies the range of hills 
which divides the valley of the Sinjar, at foot of Taurus, 
from that of Karasu Bekir. 

Plutonic Rocks of Bekir Karasu. — ^The valley of the 
Bekir Karasu is about thirty-six miles long by seven 
broad, and is shut up at its western extremity by feld- 
spatho-pyroxenic rocks, and the same rocks form a narrow 
band at the foot of the northern range of hills, the limits 
of which are very easily defined. 

Mineralogical CA^rocf^^.— Mineralogically speaking, 
the rocks consisted of dolerites, or a rock of hornblende 
and augite, with occasional crystals of olivine; and of 


compact, uniform, petrosiliceous, or gray basalt and 
basanite, or basalt with crystals of augite. 

Metamorphic Rocks. — ^The plutonic rocks at the head 
of the valley are separated from the chalk by altered 
rocks, consisting of calcareous spilites, red spilites, and 
earthy basalt (wackite), coloured blue with the phosphate 
of iron. 

Aspect of the VaUey of Bekir Kardsu. — ^The valley of 
Bekir is occupied by alluvia ; it is for the most part cul- 
tivated, and contains numerous villages, being remarkably 
well peopled. The river soon leaves the valley, in which 
the retreat of the waters has left several Tells or conical 
hills, one of which is castellated (Altun Dash, the castle 
of the golden rock), and enters into the rocky country to 
the south, flowing between low mural precipices until it 
joins the Euphrates, at a point where the latter river is 
also hemmed in, on both sides, by lofty walls of rock. 

Foliated Chalk. — ^The next country of hills to the 
south, and at the north foot of which courses the Bekfr 
Karasu, consists of subcrystalline highly granular and 
foliated limestone, with abundant organic remains, chiefly 
ostracites. The foliated structure communicates a re- 
markable appearance to this limestone, and its beds 
every where present a curved and waved stratification, 
having a general southerly dip at a high angle of incli- 

Character of the Country. — ^The country occupied by 
this formation is extremely desolate; it is for a great part 

D 2 


covered with forests of deciduous oaks on the western 
side of the Euphrates, but is quite bare on the east. The 
culminating point to the west of the Euphrates is marked 
by the remains of a Roman arch, visible both from the 
river and from the line of the present section. 

Friable Chalk. — ^The foliated limestone is observed, in 
the deep sections afforded by the Euphrates (which flows 
in a bed three hundred feet below the level of the country 
around), to repose upon friable chalk, sometimes marly 
and laminar, containing hydrated flints, but more gene- 
rally uniform, with horizontal layers of dark-brown flints 
{Sika; pyromarqtce). 

Relation of the grantdar and compact Chalk with the 
friable soft Chalk. — At Rum-Kal'ah, where the river is 
joined by a small tributary, the lower chalk occupies the 
surface soil in strata nearly horizontal, but the upper beds 
are always more indurated and compact than the lower. 
The castle is built upon a promontory of friable chalk, 
which is below the hard rock, and hence cut into steep 
precipices, surrounded by the tributary river, and at the 
same time cut through, in its southerly connexion with 
the main rock. 

Character of Cownt/ry at Somiesdt.'^^lii arriving at the 
same point from Somiesat, we find a difference in the 
physical features of the soil and in the general character 
of the cretaceous formations. The Euphrates at Somie- 
sat runs through a valley from eight to ten miles in 
width, consisting of plains of slightly different altitudes, 
left at successive periods by the river as it has deepened 


its course, — a common phenomenon of configuration 
along the river's course. 

Contrasted Configurations. — ^The plains are for the 
most part cultivated, well provided with villages, and are 
surrounded to the west by ranges of rounded hills follow- 
ing a direction pretty nearly parallel to that of the river. 
The direction of the river is from north-east to south-west: 
to the north and east is a long table-land and rounded 
hills ; to the south-east, the hills are deeply intersected 
by ravines which cut the uplands into table-lands or flat 
summits, rounded hills, and some few conical points. 
The acclivities are always remarkable for their regularity, 
and the outline is generally soft and rounded. 

Chalk Formations. — ^The formations consist entirely of 
chalk, varying in its appearance from buff-yellow and 
fissile, to white, friable, aYid light-blue marly. This forma- 
tion is covered with a breccia of transported pebbles of 
diallage rocks, hornblende rocks, and quartzes. 

Non-^anstence of a great Bend of the River at Somiesdt 
— Mela and Pliny having spoken of the combat which 
took place between Euphrates and Taurus at Elegia, an 
error (transmitted in modern times by D'Anville), has 
propagated itself among geographers and historians, of 
the occurrence of a great elbow or bend in the river at 
Somiesat (the Zeugma of Commagena of Strabo) ; Mr. 
Beke, in his " Origines Biblicse," has gone so far as to 
trace the extent of journey easterly of the fathers of the 
human race to this curvature, to which point they fol- 
lowed the course of the Euphrates ; and in the plains of 


Somiesat, and at the foot of Taurus, was, in his idea, the 
first home of our forefathers, and the land of Shinar. 
The fact is, that the river does not curve to the east of 
south until it has reached Rum-Kal'ah. 

Character of the Country which opposes Euphrates. — 
The opposition offered to the progress of a river by a 
chain of mountains, and those loftier elevations of the 
surface of the earth which strike the eye of the casual 
observer, is not greater than that which is presented by 
the prolonged developement of an uniformly massive and 
hard rock, rising, however, little above the level of the 
river's bed. It is through formations of this character 
that the Euphrates has to force its way not only at 
Somiesat, but in a continuous line, extending to the 
south of Rum-Kal'ah. And its passage through these 
rocky portals to the country of the south, is accompanied 
by much that is picturesque in scenery, and instructive 
in science. 

Compact Chalk. — ^The indurated chalk first sliows it- 
self in the neighbourhood of the plutonic rocks, at a place 
called Jemjeme; the contortions and flexures in the rock, 
which forms high cliffs above the river, are very remark- 
able. The whole system rises more than 1200 feet above 
the bed of the latter. It consists of friable, bufl-coloured 
marles and chalks, which on the south support hard lime- 
stones, dipping at a high angle of inclination to the 
south. The river curves from N. 80 W. to N. 25 E. 

Minerahgical Characters. — ^To the south of this up- 
land, the plutonic rocks show themselves in the form of 


shistose dolerites, with abundant garnets, and some augite 
and titaniferous iron. There is some basalt, but very few 
spilites and altered rocks. 

Devehpements. — ^This great band of plutonic rocks is 
almost continuous in a circular developement from Kara- 
mania by Commagena to the Karadjia Daghli, beyond 
Urfah, and to Jezirah by the foot of Masius. 

Ostracite Sandstone, — ^About a mile and a half to the 
south-west of Idlebazar, (where is a ferry on the river,) 
ostracite sandstone and old breccia show themselves 
superimposed upon the chalk series, and occupying only 
a small extent of territory. The whole space occupied 
by the sandstone on the banks of the river is not more 
than three hundred yards. 

Grottoes and Ledges in the Precipices of Euphrates.--^ 
The cliffs below Nar-Sis, formerly an Armenian place 
of importance, are dotted, with excavated grottoes, not 
sepulchral, but probably the retreat of persecuted Chris- 
tians in early times. Hyanha is a remarkable village, 
built on successive ledges of rock, artificially wrought on 
the side of a mural precipice, between four and five hun- 
dred feet high ; and the road is carried up by successive 
ledges to reach the plain of Dibbin, where Armenians 
cultivate vineyards, which aflTord a tolerable wine. 

Subsidences. — Subsidences are not uncommon along 
the river side ; they often give rise to secondary valleys 
higher than the bed of the Euphrates ; a good example 


of one occurs opposite to Rum-Karah, which presents 
the accompanying peculiarities of disposition. 

Here should be the Apamea of Isidore of Charax, but 
not the slightest vestiges of it are observable. 

CharcLcter of Euphrates bdow Rum^Kdtah. — ^At Kaffre- 
beg, two miles below Rum-Kal'ah, the valley of the river 
Euphrates begins to widen, although the territory con- 
tinues rocky, and presents pretty nearly the same charac- 
ters to the plain north of Tel Balkis, which resembles in 
its appearance, and the disposition of its alluvia, that of 
Somiesat. Tel Balkis is of chalk, and being a remark- 
able point in the general outline, was once the seat of a 
Grecian or Roman temple. The name would assign to it 
a worship of still more ancient times. 

From Balkis to Blr, the river is bounded on the one 
side by a low plain, on the other by cliffs of white chalk, 
about 150 feet in height, and capped by a deposit of 
pebbles and soil, and in one spot of transported huge 
masses of limestone ; the probable origin of which is 
given in the report upon the latest deposits by transport 
of the basin of the Euphrates. 

Chdk Formations of Blr. — ^The town of Blr is built 
upon a similar chalk formation, only that it is now distin- 
guishable into two portions, the lower of whidi consists 


of white and pure chalk in thick beds, and contains flints, 
as in the rock on which the castle of Bir is built. 

The upper beds, which are often separated from the 
lower by light blue and argillo-calcareous beds, as in the 
cliffs to the north and south of Port William, are fissile 
and of a yellowish colour, varying from buff to straw 
yellow. These beds, which form cliffs of from two to 
three hundred feet in height to the south of Bir, are for 
the most part non-fossiliferous, and do not contain flints. 
They at the same time are characterized by consider- 
able deposits of iron in nodules or layers irregularly dis- 
seminated, or in beds contemporaneous with the lime- 
stone strata. This iron is an hydrate of the peroxide, 
with some manganese {Limonite ofBeudanty hematite)^ and 
it is met with crystallized in cubical or rectangular 
crystals, these being sometimes further covered on the 
surface with small octahedral shining crystals. 

It occurs, however, most commonly as a pseudo- 
morphous product, chiefly in the botryoidal form bor- 
rowed from various polypiferous structures. It also 
occurred as a mammellonated product, having a fibrous 

The ferriferous beds of the upper chalk are remark- 
able for containing in one spot near a ziareU or tomb, one 
mile and a half south of Port William, certain varieties 
of sulphate of alum, where there is a cave of artificial 
construction. These aluminous substances do not con- 
tain potash or soda, and consequently do not belong to 
the alkaline sulphates of alum {Alumite)^ but to the pure 
sulphates (Katherite), of which there occur several varie- 
ties, the ferriferous katherite {Alum de Plume), and fibrous 
katherite in two varieties, the scaly and the radiated. 


Stratification.^^The chalk formation, in regard to its 
stratification, is generally nearly horizontal in this neigh- 
bourhood. When the inclination of the beds becomes 
decided, the general dip is to the south-west, at an angle 
of from five to fifteen degrees. 

Contrasted Configurations. — ^The contrasted configura- 
tions give a certain degree of interest to the surrounding 
scenery, consisting chiefly of table-lands, round summits, 
cones, and deep and narrow valleys. 

Theory of different Forms. — ^The circumstances under 
which this variety in configuration is given birth to, are 
the occurrence, at a little distance to the east, of the 
indurated chalk formation capping the yellow and white 
friable varieties. In the valley of the river Euphrates, 
these beds, when abruptly cut through by the waters, 
form table-lands and plateaux, and when the upper or 
indurated beds are wanting, cones and round summits or 
domes. Cones where the action of the waters has been 
great, round summits when more gentle. This is repre- 
sented in the accompanying outline. 

r-rrri \m 

It is evident that the current must have been more 
powerful in the vicinity of its circumscription by the 
precipitous termination of the table-land, than more in 
the centre of the stream. It is the same with regard to 
the succession of contrasted configurations at Somiesat 


and other points lower down the river. Tlie table-land 
of Mesopotamia extends hence to the plain of Seruj, 
where it is interrupted by plutonic rocks. 

SuproH^eiaceous Rocks. — ^The members of the supra- 
cretaceous series only show themselves in one spot in the 
neighbourfiood of Port William. This is on the summit 
of the hills which border the right bank of the river 
Kersfn in a south-westerly direction from Bir. The 
deposits here are a flinty conglomerate, cemented by a 
calcareous paste and a coarse limestone rock ; but they 
do not attain any great thickness except at the @ajur, 
where they form the basis of formations immediately 
superimposed on the chalk, and lying between it and 
other limestone rocks of the tertiary epoch. 

Headlands of Chalk. — ^The character of the successive 
headlands, consisting of chalk precipices, surmounted by 
a formation of flint breccia, as they occur to the south of 
Bfr, is attempted to be given in the above cut of the 
headland of the Ziaret, with a valley immediately beyond. 
Three miles further south, and on the east side, the plu- 
tonic formations make their appearance on the summit 
of the hills, the extreme south-westerly point of the 
Sertij effusion. 

The Whirlpool of Gurluk. — At the village of Gurluk, 
" that which sounds like thunder," Kiari of the Arabs, a 


low promontory of hard rock advances from the right 
bank into the river, throwing an impediment in the way 
of the current, and causing the waters to return upon 
themselves, they sweep up from beneath the cavemed 
mass, forming several whirlpools, which, from their great 
rapidity, are dangerous to the navigation of small boats. 

ClwJk Formations and Plutonic Rocks at Zehereh.^^On 
the eastern bank, in the same parallel, and in the vicinity 
of the village of Zehereh and of Tell Adrah, are, to the 
north, ranges of table-lands of indurated chalk capped by 
basalts ; behind Zehereh, rounded hills of friable chalk, 
and to the south, table-summits of indurated chalk capping 
friable chalk. From Tell Adrfih, which is a small but cha- 
racteristic mound upon the last table-hills, to the head- 
land at Moghar, is a succession of cliffs composed of 
indurated limestone and limestone breccia, alternating 
with friable chalk. The explanation already given of the 
origin of contrasted configurations in the chalk forma- 
tions applies itself, it will be seen, forcibly to the present 

Formations at Sarisdt, or Ceciliana. — From Gurluk to 
the Sajur the country on the right bank is low, and only 
succeeded in the distance by undulating hills of tame out- 
line. Beyond the Sajur, the cliffs of Sarisat advance in 
a bold headland into the river. They consist of friable 
chalk, wrought into extensive caverns or dwelling-places, 
with subterranean communications, in one part, capped 
by indurated chalk, mostly in waved and contorted stra- 
tification. There is a Greek inscription at this headland, 
and a pleasing recess, where a small stream fell over a 


natural circus of rock, near which, and upon the hill side, 
are the ruins of the antique Ceciliana. 

Formations at Nesjm Kal^ahj (The Castle of the Stars.) 
—Alternations of indurated and of friable chalk con- 
tinue to give their character to the country as far as to 
Nesjm Kal'ah, eighteen miles and a half below the Sajur, 
a noble castellated building, on a mound of white chalk, 
surrounded by cliffs of the same rock, mostly indurated. 
The latter soon begins to lose its developement. The 
country becomes less abrupt and more imiform in aspect. 
The valley of the Euphrates widens, and in the re-enter- 
ing angles of the rock-formations, plains of alluvium 
begin to be deposited. These features, however, are 
entirely changed by the hills of Kara Bamhuch^ which 
cross the river about eighteen miles below Neym 

FormoMons of Kara jBambuch.— These hills, of a 
rounded and flat tame outline, rise at least 1200 feet 
above the bed of the river, and consist entirely of indu- 
rated chalk or limestone, alternating with friable chalk. 
Their appearance is rather more interesting when the 
river forces its way through them, giving birth to fine 
mural precipices, and causing local subsidences, by which 
the strata are observed, at the entrance of the pass, to dip 
in the two opposite directions at the opposed sides of the 
river. The first small and rugged rock on the right bank 
presents the remains of a causeway or bridge. The site 
of Kara Bambuch, which was probably connected with 
the metropolitan Bambuch, Mambege or Hierapolis, situ- 
ated in the middle of a great plain, sixteen miles to the 


east, is upon two separate bills' summits, divided by a deep 
ravine, witb sepulcbral grots and caves. 

Organic Remains. — ^Tbe lower white cbalk on tbe east 
side abounds in Echinodermata, Zoophjrtes, and small 
Ostraeites. The nidus of the Zoophytes are sometimes 
filled with Limonite. There are no flints. 

Rhmbic Cleavage. — In the cliffs on the same side, on 
approaching the pass, the whole mass of the rock is divided 
by rhombic cleavage into thin masses about an inch thick. 
This is one of those cases where structural changes have 
occurred since the period of the first deposition and con- 
solidation of the rock. In 1835, in a small work descrip- 
tive of the same appearances as observed upon a magni- 
ficent scale at Ballybunian, on the coast of Ireland, I 
attempted to point out the sub-crystalline character of 
this mode of cleavage. Since that period, a discussion 
has originated between two eminent geologists. Professor 
Sedgwick (" Geol. Trans.," 2d series, vol. iii., p. 3,) and 
Dr. Boase, (" Phil. Mag.," 3d series. No. xlii.,) upon the 
same point; whether the change undergone since the 
deposition is structural or not. There cannot, as fer as 
my opinion goes, be the slightest doubt that it is not. 
The researches of Dr. Clarke, and more lately of Sir 
David Brewster, upon the crystallization of snow and ice, 
have tended to show, as was anticipated from the exami- 
nation of certain crystalline hailstones, that the primitive 
form of solid water is the rhomboedron. Ice forms a 
continuous surface, like certain clay-slates, argillolites, 
and calcareous rocks, which are capable of assuming the 
rhombic form. That this is not a stnicture superin- 


duced, but only an original structure developed by cleav- 
age, is proved in calcareous rocks by the primitive form 
of calc-spar being a rhomboedron. Ice, in the same 
manner, fractures with a rhombic cleavage, the hum- 
mocks of ice in the Arctic Regions present rhombic 
planes, — ^yet who would think of considering this as a 
superinduced structure? 

Vall^ ofEuphrateSy south of Kara Bamhuch.^^o the 
south of Kara Bambuch, the valley of the Euphrates 
begins to widen, the banks are occupied by extensive 
alluvial plains, which feed the flocks of the errant Arabs ; 
while low hills of transported pebbles, with huge frag- 
ments of limestone superimposed, diversify the level. 
About fifteen miles from the pass, hills composed of 
alternating indurated and friable beds, advance to the 
river side from the east, where they attain an elevation 
of about 800 feet. On the opposite, or western side, is 
a lofty, isolated hill, of similar characters, and capped by 
a stratum of indurated chalk, called Sheik Harudi, from 
a tomb on its sunmiit. 

Source of Daradax. — On the left bank, the country 
lowers gradually towards the great plains opposite to 
Balis, occupied by the populous Arabs of the Beni 
Feckahal tribe. On the right bank is the low country, 
supposed to contain the sources of the Daradax, which 
is only interrupted fifteen miles lower down by the abrupt 
cliffs which dominate over the ancient BaKs. 

Formations near Bdlis.^^The cliffs, when they ap- 
proach the water^s edge three miles north of Balis, are 143 


feet in perpendicular height, of which the upper twenty 
are occupied by flint breccia and siliceous sandstone^ 
beneath which is a bed three feet thick, of pseudo-colum* 
nar chalk, of a deep-red tint, dark-red veins, white chalk 
two feet two inches, brown marles and chalk three feet, 
fifty-five feet of bare precipice of chalk, and sixty feet of 
rubbly acclivity. 

CJliffs a mile north of J?a/w.— About a mile north of 
Balis, the breccia is no longer so prominent in the sec- 
tions. The upper portion of the cliffs is occupied by a 
deep formation of uniform white chalk, somewhat fissured 
vertically, but every where in nearly horizontal stratifica^- 
tion. At the foot of this portion of the precipice are 
cretaceous marles, alternating with brown laminar marles 
and cretaceous beds, and below these again, the usual 
chalk formation. 

Hills around jBdlis. — Lastly, in the environs of Balis 
are low hills, which present in their upper parts the 
same brown laminar marles and cretaceous marles, and 
which contain crystalline and laminar gypsum, or selenite, 
in thin beds of from two to six inches in depth, and 
granular gypsum several feet in thickness. 

Headland south of BdHs.'-^The same formations ad- 
vance in low clifis as far as a headland about seven miles 
south of Balis ; to the west there is only an alluvial plain, 
succeeded by a low undulating country. 

First appearance of Gypsum^ — ^This first appearance, 
where the formations are upon so large a soale^ of a ten* 


dency to the existence of a new order of circumstances, 
by which the lime is made to enter into new chemical 
relations, is of a very remarkable character: the same 
formation which we shall soon find assuming an almost 
prodigious developement, is here thrown into a most 
circumscribed compass; it also, at its first occurrence, 
although accompanied by its usually associated marles, 
presents no traces of lacustrine or of fresh-water shells, 
although in its subsequent developement we shall find 
the same order of phenomena attendant upon the forma- 
tion, as have been observed in other countries. 

HdwL — Plains of alluvium, such as now occupy a 
great portion of the valley of the river Euphrates to the 
south of Balis, are designated by the natives as hawi. 
It is not until we arrive at the hills of Abu Bara, re- 
nowned for the battle plain of Siff in beyond, that we meet 
with ranges of marles capped with gypsum. On the east 
bank, a little further on, a mound of similar structure, on 
which Ja'ber's castellated ruins are nestled, stands in ad- 
vance of hills of the same formation. 

Formations of Abu Bard and of Ja'ber CasUe. — ^The 
range of Abu Bara, marked by towers and other ruins, is 
flat, and presents at its summits strata of gypsum, for the 
most part horizontal, but which at the south-eastern 
extremity dip at a high angle of inclination to S. 80 E., 
but I am inclined to look upon this as a local subsidence. 
The formations on the left bank present similar irregu- 
larities ; the castle stands upon a basis of solid gypsum, 
which itself reposes upon alternating marles and gypsum. 
The marles now present abundant Cyclades and other 



fresh-water shells. In the rear of the castle many irre- 
gularities of stratification present themselves. 

Minendogical Characters. — ^The mineralogical charac- 
ters of the gypsum in its solid beds are dirty-white, 
coarse-granular, and even saccharoidal, as at Ja'ber. At 
Abu Bara it is granular, coarse-grained gray, and small- 
grained gray, ash-gray, white, and very friable and sandy ; 
and decomposes in rough uneven cliffs, exhibiting a 
peculiarly weathered appearance. 

Mineral Contents. — ^The mineral contents are, a variety 
of menelite or hydrated flints in nodules, separate, and 
not conjoined as in the menelites of Montmartre ; arrow- 
headed gypsum ; laminated gypsum, sometimes in beds ; 
and siliceous gypsum, brown colour, scratched with the 
knife, semi-conchoidal and splintery fracture, lustre 
shining in one direction, dull, cerous in the other, in 
veins or beds six inches deep in the granular gypsum. 

Maries. — The marles were straw-yellow, buff-yellow, 
salmon-yellow, and cream-coloured. There also occurred 
a deposit of cretaceous or marley conglomerate, con- 
taining angular masses of chalk in a paste of cretaceous 

HiUy Ranges south of Ja'ber. — ^To the south of Ja'ber, 
a level range of marles, capped by gypsum, about two 
miles long and 300 feet high, extends on the right bank 
of the river N. 60 E. to S. 60 W. At the northern 
end, the gypsum is about 20 to 25 feet in thickness, and 
reposes upon buff and salmon-coloured cretaceous marles 


150 feet deep ; soon the gypsum attains a thickness of 
upwards of 40 feet^ till at the next southerly headland 
it occupies the whole depth of the clifl^ forming rounded 
hills about 80 feet high, of peculiar aspect, and a very 
cribbly and weather-worn appearance. 

In the same district, on the lefb bank, the forma- 
tions of a similar character retreat to a greater distance 
from the river. The hills, scarcely 100 feet in height, 
are composed, to the north, of mural precipices of gyp- 
sum, reposing upon yellow marles, but the gypsum begins 
to occupy the whole cliffs as these approach the river 
bank about four miles to the south of Ja'ber, when they 
are much cavern-wrought and picturesque, with subter- 
ranean passages and overhanging foliage. 

Strati/lcation.^^The strata in both ranges are nearly 
horizontal at first, and subsequently obtain a gentle in- 
clination, where the increased developement of the gyp- 
sum beds brings the latter, in a distance of about four 
miles, from an elevation of 100 feet above the soil to the 
level of the river. 

Character of country between Jabber and Thapsacus.-^ 
From the termination of these hills to Al Hamam 
(Thapsacus), the interior country is occupied by low hills 
and undulating ground, of breccia of crystalline rocks, and 
coarse sandstone ; and the banks of the river by a jungle 
of tamarisk, poplar, and briers. The hilly mounds of Aff 
Dien are composed of the same breccia ; Sura, " Flavia^ 
firma Sura^^ is upon a plain of the same character. From 
the latter town, a low range of hills leads to the river- 
Bide, at the foot of which is an ancient causeway, These 

E 2 


hills consist of marles and cretaceous conglomerates, with 
white saccharoidal gypsum; superimposed, are breccia, 
with huge masses of crystalline transparent dihedral 

Hadjdr Rasas. — ^A plain or hawi, about three miles 
in extent, and tilled by the Weldah Arabs, separates 
this last group from another, which is also composed of 
cretaceous marles, with abundant cyclades and cretaceous 
conglomerates, with occasional flints and beds of snow- 
white saccharoidal gjrpsum. The cretaceous conglome- 
rates are of a hard and coarse nature, and advance in 
huge masses into the torrent^ whose force they have long 
resisted. An isolated mass of this kind, of no great 
dimensions, rises out of the water — a rather uncommon 
sight in the Euphrates — about 500 yards from the shore, 
and is known by the name of the Hadjar Rasas, or Dash 
i Surieh. 

Btmy ofSopkena. — To the south from hence, a long 
headland of precipitous clifis, about 200 feet high, con- 
sisting of marles and gypsum, stretches to the east at a 
distance of from two to three miles from the river, and 
th^A curves round to south-east and souths forming a low 
range of hiUss in whidi gypsum predominates over tlie 
marks, and wfaidi are de^hr intersected by ravines and 
pteeipieesw Tliis range stretches in a south^lT duteclioii 
beyond the supposed site of Stqphena. 

Pinm if JRaktai.— To the nmth firwi ThapsMos is a 
eoiitiiHMMS and level jhin, only divevsiSed br tte miaft 
«r a C96lfe (An^X Ip^ wpam tlie rad tmd bgr &e 


followers of Cyrus to Calah, by those of Alexander to 
Nicephorium, and by those of Trajan to Callinicus, names 
by which, at those times, the Callinicum of the ecclesi- 
astical notices and the Bakkah of Harun al Baschf d were 

Forest of ^Ardn. — ^The river Euphrates bends to S. 85 
W. at this point, and flows through plains bounded to 
the west by the hills of Sophena, and to the east, beyond 
the course of the river of Belicha, the banks are occu- 
pied by the forest of 'Aran, consisting entirely of tamarisk, 
poplar, and white mulberry, and which extends to the 
confines of the horizon. 

Developement of the Gypsum. — From Balis to Bakkah 
is a distance of 70 miles, of which 60 are occupied by 
the gypsum formation, and no alteration in geognostic 
characters are met with till the river passes through the 
prolongation of the Jebel Bushir at Zenobia, a further 
distance, by the river, of 91 miles. 

Character of the Country from Rakkah to Zenobia. 
— ^Throughout this extent of country there is little 
variety of contrasted configurations. The banks of the 
river are occupied by an eternal jungle of tamarisk ; the 
river winds very much. The gypsum and marles form 
low hills, and a slightly undulating territory at various 
distances from two to eight miles from the river, the 
intervening space being occupied by alluvium, more par- 
ticularly on the right bank pastured by the Sebkal Arabs. 
On the lefb bank, arid plains, covered with aromatic 
fllinibB and sturdy composite plants, advance more fre- 


quently to the river-side. These plains are tenanted by 
the Afadel Arabs. At the same time the rock formations 
also approach the river-banks in a few places. The first 
of these is to the north of Mohaila, where they form cliffs 
about 100 feet high, and 300 yards from the river, of 
alternating marles and gypsum. At Mohaila, the same 
formations are only about 300 yards from the river, and 
a little beyond, the rocks come to the water's edge, con- 
stituting the precipice and whirlpool of Rauwolf. 

Nature of Soil and Vegetation. — In the notes of Phy- 
sical Geography, which I have made of the river in this 
course of 91 miles, there are two hawi, four forests or 
groves of poplar, two sandy points, five tracts of graminae 
or pasture, with villages, twelve marshy districts, chiefly 
about Abu Said, twelve cultivated spots, four quarters of 
low jungle, eight tracts of Artemisia, and twenty-seven 
of Tamarix. 

Scenery of the Bmhir HiUs. — ^The hills of Bushir, 
where the Euphrates enters the range, are neither lofty 
nor striking in their form, nor covered with wood, yet 
it is difficult to imagine what relief they afford to the 
eye, wearied vnth monotony of scenery and similarity of 
objects ; but when entering into the land-locked pass, the 
river gradually expands its silver bosom, and displays the 
alabaster walls and noble edifices of Zenobia, stretching 
from the hill. side down to the water's edge, the banks 
fringed with groves of poplar and mulberry, and the 
turrets and broken arches of ultra-Euphratic Zenobia 
occupying the summit of the hills to the left, beauties 
begin to crowd upou (h^ spectator^ i^}4 }^^ ^^ longer 


wonders that the Palmyrean queen should have made 
this a favourite residence. 

Geognostic strticture of Bushir Hills. — ^The formations 
at Zenobia consist of marles and gypsum, covered by an 
overlying formation of plutonic rocks and of crystalline 
breccia. The plutonic rocks are basalts and basanites, or 
basalts of a bright dark-coloured basis, with disseminated 
augite. These rocks are spathose in their structure, and 
in some localities present regular polyhedral divisions; 
they are accompanied by spilites, or the same rock with 
disseminated nodules of calc spar and amygdaloidal 
cviUe.. These f.nna«on, do not .tfin . g^t thiok- 
ness, seldom more than from five to ten or twelve feet. 

Breccia and Selenitic Sandstone. — ^The plutonic rocks 
are superimposed upon breccia and selenitic sandstone; 
the breccia consists of pebbles of quartz, jasper, serpen- 
tine, diallage, heliotropes, and other rocks ; the sandstone 
was the same as the indurated sand of the river-bed, an 
argillo-siliceous sand, with abundant scales of diallage, 
and cemented by sulphates and carbonates of lime. It 
contained regular concretions, like fiilgorites, and some 
recent coleopterous insects, but no shells. The most 
curious circumstance was the alternation of thin selenitic 
sandstone, in a more crystalline form, with the plutonic 
rocks near the ultra-Euphratic Zenobia. It not only 
divided the formation of basanites into two portions, but 
occurred in filtrated vertical veins. 

Maries. — ^Beneath these beds were marles, green, gray, 
and coloured by the oxi4es of iron. They \^er^ fdldbl^ 


imbibed moisture freely, seldom laminar, and contained 
few fossils. They alternated in their upper part with 
the crystalline breccia. 

Gypmm. — ^The gypsum, which at first alternates with 
the marles, soon assumes a predominating developement. 
It occurs snow-white and saccharoidal, also small grained, 
granular. It is also met with in the same districts, trans- 
parent, laminar, in thin beds, and in small masses variously 
arranged, like brick tiles. 

Theoretical Deductions, — It is obvious that the chief 
inferences to be deduced from the important fact of the 
superposition of the plutonic rocks on the crystalline 
breccia, the alternation of the selenitic sandstone with the 
basanites, and the breccia and sandstone with the marles 
of the gypsum formation, affect the history of the latest 
formations by transport belonging to the basin of the 
Euphrates ; and I have, in consequence, although I repeat 
the description of the leading peculiarities here, given 
the deductions where they would have the advantage of 
being studied consecutively with the other phenomena 
presented by the same formations, and thus rest upon 
sure and unquestionable principles. 

Character of Country smth of Zenobia. — ^To the south 
of Zenobia, tracts of clayey alluvium are covered with 
grasses and jasmin shrub ; groves of poplar adorn the 
river banks. The clays sometimes rise in precipices 40 
feet high, superimposed upon crystalline breccia. They 
are observed to contain fragments of gypsum ; the strata 
for the most part are nearly horizontal ; the dip southerly. 


and the greatest angle of inclination observed 15°. There 
occurs an intennittent spring at this point. The plutonic 
rocks crop out further to the south, about eight mites 
nortli of Deir; they are chiefly iron-shot basalts and 
basanites, and scarcely cause any undulation in the soil. 
Between this and Deir are cliffs of gypsum, bounded by a 
clayey district, which forms the sunburnt and arid country 
around the " Monastery." The first date trees make 
their appearance here, but the barrenness and uniformity 
of vegetation is as great as the simplicity of the soil. 

Character of Country between Deir and the Khahur. 
— ^The distance from Zenobia, or Zelebl of the Arabs, 
to Deir, by the river, is 50 miles, the distance from Deir 
to the Khabur is 30 miles; the country a nearly uni- 
form and level plain. The tenacious clay formation does 
not allow the water to percolate, and gives origin to 
extensive marshes ; the remainder is occupied by tamarisk 
or pasture. There are several Arab forts or villages, and 
some cultivation. Breccia and sandstone are seen in one 
place. At the termination of this country, and at the 
mouth of the Khabur, is Cercusium, now called Ker- 
kislyah, and Abu Serai. 

Xenophon^s description of Country south of Araxes. — 
To the east, beyond the Khabur, or Araxes, the country 
is, as previously mentioned, as it was in the days of 
Xenophon, full of wormwood. Wild asses, or horses, are 
still met with. Ostriches are rare, as also are roe-deer. 
Bustards abundant. The formations consist of trans- 
ported pebbles, and the country is all but even as the 
sea. Zaita of Ammianus Marcellinus is still Zeit, an 


olive grove. Beyond is the modern town of Maiardln, in 
a plain of clay, but irrigated and cultivated ; and three 
miles to the east, cli£& of mountain rock, about 100 feet 
high, domineer over the Assyrian Rehoboth. The mo- 
dern castle of Bahabah is built upon a cliff-environed 
knoll, and defended as much by art as by nature. 

Formations at Rahabdh. — ^The lower beds at Rahabah 
consist of gjrpsum and marles, above which are coarse 
sands and sandstones, upon which again are superimposed 
cretaceous marles, often coated with bitumen. 

Above this group is a breccia of crystalline rocks, 
then compact gray laminar sandstones, and again the 
usual breccia. Then a formation of selenitic sandstone, 
gypsum and sand sometimes agglutinated, at others 
rudely crystalline. Above this, a rock of less indurated 
and compact texture, and more pebbly, also containing 
masses of white chalk and clay in septaria, also numerous 
bones, among which I obtained the head of a jerboa, in 
every respect similar to those of an existing species 
{Dipus gerboa)y numerous bones of birds, and of larger 
quadrupeds, which appeared to be those of domestic ani- 
mals, but from the comminuted state of the fragments, 
this is mere conjecture. There is not, however, in 
Western Asia, a formation more worthy of exploration 
than this. I am not certain if fragments of pottery 
which I obtained from it had not got imbedded by acci- 
dent in the superficial soil. But there is a promise of 
great reward to a carefuUy-conducted examination, which 
the want of time alone prevented me giving to so inte- 
resting a formation. Lastly, the ossiferous breccia is 
covered by a deposit, in thin beds, of a very hard flesh- 


coloured limestone breccia, with pebbles of quartz, and 
a few diallages and serpentines, and frequent fragments 
of bones. The castle of Rahabah is built of this ossi- 
ferous limestone breccia, which occupies the surface soil 
of all that portion of the wilderness (and a wide and lone 
expanse it is) which is to the west, and above the valley 
of the Euphrates in these parallels. 

Character of Country between Mdiadin and Saldhiyah. 
— In the interval of country between Ma'iadin and 
Salahlyah, the valley of the Euphrates is occupied by 
districts of tamarisk, marshes, low level plains, some 
cultivated tracts and villages, with occasional mounds, 
and Arab forts and ziarets, (Chibli, Sheik Arret, el 
Ashareti). Low hills of uniform outline occupy the 
horizon to the east, hilly ranges rather more lofty and 
distinct, bound the plains to the west. The former con- 
sist, for the most part, of transported deposits, the latter 
of rock formations. These approach the river bank in 
two or three places ; at El Ashar they form cliffs of creta- 
ceous marles and red clays, and below these the rocks, 
consisting of gypsum and marles, capped by red clay and 
ossiferous limestone breccia, advance in a bold headland 
into the river bed. This is the Carteron mountain and 
precipice of a former navigator. 

Formations at SaldMyah, — ^At Salahiyah, where are 
undescribed and extensive ruins, cliffs 200 feet high 
domineer over the river, on whose very verge, a massive 
castellated building towers with almost the stability of 
rock. The formations at the base of the cliffs are con- 
stituted of the usual gypsum and marles. There are no 


less than twenty-four beds of the foiiner, from two to 
four feet thick, alternating with marles; some of the 
latter were divided by veins of laminar transparent gyp- 
sum, which may be easily obtained here for optical pur- 
poses, or to be used as glass. ^ Superimposed upon these 
formations, is the red ossiferous limestone breccia, but 
here developed to many feet in thickness. It gives 
origin to a very level and uniform plain, stony, and ex- 
ceedingly destitute of vegetation. It stretches to the 
extreme verge of the horizon, and it would be difficult 
to imagine the cheerless desolation of such a scene. 

Character of Countiy between Saldhiyah and Irzah. — 
Immediately beyond Salahiyah, the banks of the river 
are occupied by the customary low plains, in part inun- 
dated. Opposite to Salahiyah is a country of tamarisk, 
with pastures beyond, and the tents of Jebul Arabs, 
and the same character of country, alternating tracts of 
tamarisk. Low plains of inundation, only diversified by 
the occasional mud ramparts of an Arab fort, and clay 
mounds with ziarets, extend as far as the town of Irzah, 
the Corsoti of Xenophon, or a distance of 59 miles. The 
ruins stand upon cliffs upwards of 150 feet high, on the 
east bank. The river, after approaching the cliffs, makes 
a great westerly bend, at the same time that a branch 
goes along the foot of the cliffs. This is the river Masca 
of the Greek historian, and the great bend, by keeping 
the ruin constantly in sight, is the cause of the astounding 
statements of Balbi and Rauwolf regarding the time 
occupied in navigating round the ruins of Irzah, and 
which would give a very inaccurate notion of their ex- 
tent, which is, in fact, very insignificant. 


Fo^^mations at Irzah. — ^The formations at Irzah consist 
chiefly of a variety of gypsums and marly beds, sometimes 
bituminous. A great clay formation, with polypiferous 
structures, and the ossiferous limestone breccia, is here 
covered by a gypsum formation, which occupies the sur- 
face soil on the plain where stood the antique colony of 
Jews. This is the first appearance of a maritime forma- 
tion intercalated in the gypseous series, since it, at its 
commencement, was developed coeval with the geogra- 
phical termination of the chalk formation ; a distance of 
144 miles, the character of the fossils in the gypseous 
marles continues the same. 

Superposition. — ^The succession of formations is, white 
saccharoidal gypsum at top, red limestone breccia, gyp- 
sum, marles, clays with polypifers, marles with cyclades 
and melania, marles with bitumen, gypsum. The beds 
average from 15 to 25 feet in thickness ; but this, as well 
as the order of succession, varies much with the inclina- 
tion of the beds, which is also variable. 

Character oftJie Country fram Irzah to ^Andh, — From 
Irzah to 'Anah is a distance, by river, of seventy miles, 
and in this interval, an undulating country of small 
rounded hills and transverse valleys, exhibit all the evi- 
dences of a country of denudation. The gypsum and 
marles show themselves in a variety of places, but in 
general covered with breccia, and causing very little dif- 
ference to the usual configuration of the soil. Near El 
Kayim, the gypsum is wanting, and cretaceous marles, at 
first superposed by breccia, are soon observed to alternate 
with it in nearly horizontal beds; The whole extent of 


these deposits seldom rise more than 40 feet above the 
level of the river. In one spot only on the left bank, 
the marles and gypsum, upwards of 80 feet deep, are 
observed to alternate vdth red clay and marles in con- 
torted strata. 

Character of Country at Rawah and 'Andh. — On ap- 
proaching 'Anah, the character of the country changes, 
bare rocky hills shut in the river on both sides, and 
stretch across the bed, giving origin to the rapids of 
Karablah, and forming an island, picturesque from its 
oriental buildings and acquired verdure; they then ad- 
vance in a bluff promontory on the left bank beyond the 
small town of Bawah. Turning the promontory, 'Anah, 
enclosed amid groves of date trees and pomegranates, 
shows itself stretching in a long line between the river 
bank and low cliffs of white rock, — a fringe of soil upwards 
of three miles in length, and not above 300 yards in 
depth. Eight different islands divide the river like a con- 
tinuous strip of land, clothed with a luxuriant vegetation, 
and ornamented with the ruins of a castle, which has 
had an adventurous history. On the left bank, the bills 
are barren and bleak, and continue to domineer with an 
altitude of firom 600 to 800 feet» as far as the site of old 
Anatha, about two miles below the modem town. 

On the brow of the hiUs between Rawah and 'Anab, 
is £1 Guman Castle^ and a little beyond, the tomb of £1 
Karin. On the hills above 'Anah, the remains of the 
castles of Abdhallah and Zahon, and on the left bank, 
nearly opposite to the Jews' quarter, and north of aoeieiit 
Amtha, is the castle <tf 


Formations at 'Andh. — ^The formations at 'Anah con- 
sist superiorly of coarse limestone and limestone marles, 
with abundant bivalve shells, all of marine origin. 

Below, a hard compact limestone, abounding in poly- 
piferous lithophites, radiating and branched species. 

Beneath this, a formation of limestone more particu- 
larly abounding in large cones and abundant cerithise. 

These limestones were superimposed upon red taJcose 
marles, with cream-coloured streaks, becoming more cre- 
taceous towards the limits superiorly and inferiorly. This 
deposit attained a thickness of 20 feet. 

Beneath this was a formation of limestone, with ceri- 
thise, generally dolomitic, or like the marles, containing 
magnesite, having a cerous lustre, even, but conchoidal 
fracture, and very sharp edges ; and the lowest formation 
met with was a cerithia limestone, cellular and cavernous, 
with a hard splintery fracture. 

Superposition and Distribution. — ^The relations of su- 
perposition in these formations are not evident in any 
one locality, but are deduced by the customary investi- 
gation of dip and direction. The hard cavernous lime- 
stone is seen to best advantage opposite to Bawah ; the 
cretaceous marles in quarries west of 'Anah. In the 
plains, and at the summit of the round hills scattered 
over these, two and three miles south-west of the town, 
the coarse limestone with abundant bivalves must be 
sought for ; the cerithia limestone lies over the cretaceous 
marles, and the conide and polypiferous limestone occupy 
the whole depth of the cliffs immediately behind the 
straggUng edifices of this interesting spot. In the rear 


of old 'Anah, or Anatha of Ammianus, a highly fossilife- 
rous limestone is met with. 

Character of Counb^y between ^Andh and Hadlsah. — ^To 
the south of 'Anah contrasted configurations become 
more common in a country hitherto remarkable for uni- 
formity of aspect, and the soil is enlivened by ranges of 
hills, expanded valleys, and fine alluvial plains, while the 
river boasts its numerous islands, its copses of wood, and 
flourishing, although unprotected, villages. 

Ranges of Hills, — On the left bank the Jebel Abu 
stretches in uniform summits above cultivated plains and 
villages, when the country to the west is occupied by 
the low hills designated as the Jebel Tel Antah, followed 
by the Jebel Kaifel Rusajah and the Jebel Bajan. To the 
oast the hills of Rechanah are followed by an interval of 
low, cultivated, and fertile country, to the districts of the 
Lagadah hills and the Mohera, with expansive plains and 
tamarisk woods stretching down and occupying the banks 
of the river, which are sheltered by lofty cliffs (Dagh 
Faazet) on the opposite or right side. 

Beyond the Mohera, are the Julebah and Hablb 
Nadjar mountains, backed by the desert of the Nasariya, 
a degenerate Sinjar race of robbers, who are only separated 
by the Brelimmah mountain from the fertile plain of 
Hadisah. To the west the country is occupied by the 
Isk Hambar, the Us Joya, and the, mountains of Susah. 
The distance from 'Anah to Hadisah, by the river, is 66 
miles, but on foot, without a guide, I reduced it to 50 
miles. Although the term mountain is used in these 


designations in accordance with their Arabic acceptation, 
none of these hills attain an elevation of upwards of 500 
feet above the bed of the river. 

Contrasted Configuratimis. — ^These are not groups of 
hills with distinct acclivities, and great intervening longi- 
tudinal valleys, but almost always fmgments of the in- 
terior high country, cut off by the action of ordinary or 
extraordinary powers of denudation, into distinct ranges ; 
sometimes with precipitous acclivities and abrupt termi- 
nations ; where, being connected with a particular portion 
of the river, and having villages and cultivated land 
at their feet (for on the summits there is no cultivation 
whatsoever), they obtain a different designation ; often- 
times, as in the Moherah hills, a great number of circum- 
scribed valleys, like inlets or indentures in the uplands, 
become so complex in their relations as to constitute real 
hilly groups; in others, as the Lakadahr hills, a long 
range is sent off to the south-west, bordered to the west 
by the river Euphrates, while another branch goes to the 
south-east under another name, to join the Moherah range, 
leaving a great plain deeply intersected by tributary 
rivulets to the south, or in the angle contained between 
the two. In a geological point of view, they are every- 
where hills and valleys of denudation, and in no case 
mountains of elevation, or valleys of subsidence: as a 
further proof of which, the formations present every- 
where a nearly horizontal stratification, and the beds, 
which aflTord sections and precipices in the valleys, or 
wherever there is solution of continuity, are continuous 
in the uplands above, the highest rock or deposit of the 



hilly districts forming the surface soil of the territorial 
and highland plains beyond. 

Formations of the HiUy District. — ^The formations that 
are met with in this district, arranged according to the 
constant order of succession, are, Sandstone and iron- 
stone, breccia and gravel, chloritous or green marles, per- 
feroxidated or red marles, gypsum, proto-feroxidated or 
yellow marles, bituminous or black coarse marles, rude 
bituminous rock, limestone, saliferous clays. 

Order of Superposition. — ^The different members of 
this series are nowhere developed altogether, they may 
therefore be the representatives of one another, or varieties 
produced by local causes, in the same formation. The 
order of succession in the Moherah is gypsum, ironstone, 
shale, marles, and saliferous clays, from above down- 
wards. In the same range ironstone, marles, and sali- 
ferous clays. In the Julibah hills, rude bituminous rock, 
marles, saliferous clays, and gypsum, upon bituminous 
rock, clay, rubble, and marles, more frequently sand- 
stone, gravel, marles, gypsum, bituminous rock, and sali- 
ferous clays. 

Influence of Structv/re on jPbrm.— -These different fea- 
tures in the constitution of the hilly ranges, affect ma- 
terially the contrasted configuration ; the sandstone caps 
the gravel in rounded hills with steep summits; the 
gravel forms simply rounded hills ; the ironstone, inter- 
rupted or rocky summits ; the gjrpsum, table-lands ; marles, 
low cliffs, with a level outline. 



AUemations of Members of the same Series. — ^The sand- 
stone alternates with the gravel ; the breccia and sand- 
stone alternate with the gypsum ; tlie bituminous beds 
with all three ; the ironstone is always superposed, but 
as, mineralogically speaking, it is only a character given 
to the sandstones, which also belongs in the same series 
to the marles ; it may be considered in the same light as 
the bituminous products, viz., as newly-developed mem- 
bers, in a superior portion of a known series. The 
already inferior position of the saliferous clay ; also, only 
recently developed as a superior member of the same 
series ; would, at the same time, lead to a strong infe- 
rence that the gypsum, which is superior to it, belongs 
to a more recent formation of that mineral mass, than 
has as yet been met with ; and thus its occurrence among 
these new ferruginous and bituminous formations must 
be looked upon like the propagation of a social plant out 
of its own territory — a vagabond among new forms — a 
kind of emigration of the gypseous formations amid rocks 
of a more recent date. 

Theory of the Origin of Gypsum. — Considerations of 
this kind force themselves upon the mind still more 
strongly, when we contemplate the position and the geo- 
logical history of the bituminous products of these districts. 
The order of circumstances attendant upon the secondary 
developement of gypsum, has always been supposed to be 
actions of an igneous, if not an actual volcanic, nature. 
The prodigious horizontal developement of this formation 
in these countries appears at first almost to shake the 
foundation of such an hypothesis. The first bituminous 
products, however, in the same district, manifest them- 

F 2 



selves at the junction of the plutonic rocks and the 
gypsum ; they there present characters of antiquity, by 
which they approximate more to certain lignite coals, 
than to the fluid or indurated bitumen of existing foun- 
tains; the second line at which they again appear is 
where thermal actions, certainly not of a simply chemical 
nature, are in full play, accompanied by the developement 
of products as sulphuretted hydrogen, one of the ingre- 
dients of which is necessary for the production of gypsum. 
These actions are going on at once at nearly the geogra- 
phical and geological limits of the formations, and where 
the only remnants of former actions, if such should pos- 
sibly exist, could be sought for ; and the faith in an old 
yet philosophical theory returns with more than pristine 

Charadei* of the Country between Hadisah and Jnhbah. 
— ^The village of Hadisah is upon an island, as is that of 
Jubbah, but there is also a portion of the latter upon the 
riglit bank of the river. The distance from the one to 
the other is 20 miles, and the intervening country is 
occupied in part by cultivated plains, and by hilly ranges 
of calcareous rocks and gypsum, among which the Sinji 
mountains to the west, and the El Kurraf to the east, 
distinguish themselves. A well-cultivated and extended 
low district on the left bank, is designated as the Wadey 

Character* of the Country from Jvhbah to Hit — From 
Jubbah to Hit is a further distance of 28 miles, through- 
out which the country preserves pretty nearly the same 
characters ; but the hilly ranges become lower, are less 


frequent, at a greater distance apart, have less abrupt 
slopes, and are consequently verging off to an undulating 
country. The Abul 'Us mountains to the east present us 
with sandstone and gravel, chloritous and ferruginous 
marles, gypsum, calcareous rock, and saliferous clays. 
The Jaal district of hills to the west present merely 
marles and gypsum, and it is the same with the She'ik 
Bufah hills to the east, with occasionally intervening, and 
sometimes superimposed, transported deposits of breccia 
and gravel. The Altah Sail country is the last low 
gypseous district that occurs to the north of Hit. 

Antiquity of the Fountains of Hit — Hit, the ancient 
Is, has been celebrated from all antiquity for its never- 
failing fountains of bitumen, and they furnished the im- 
perishable mortar of the Babylonian structures. They 
were visited by Alexander, by Trajan, and by Julian. 
They now only cover the Geiser (or Gopher) boats of the 
Euphrates, and the asphaltic coracles of the Tigris. There 
is, however, yet considerable trade in salt obtained by 
the evaporation of the waters. 

Position of Fountains, — ^The fountains are several in 
number, but at some distance from one another ; two of 
the largest occur about a mile in the rear of the country, 
between which, and the springs, the soil is converted into 
rude salt-pans or reservoirs, constructed with little care, 
to allow the waters to evaporate : a prodigious quantity 
of fine salt is nevertheless obtained by this simple pro- 

Formations in which they occwr.— The formations in 


which these springs make their appearance, are argilla- 
ceous limestones, often magnesiferous, with a sub-con- 
choidal fracture, a dull lustre, cerous or waxy when 
magnesiferous, imbibing moisture with rapidity, and con- 
taining Hallite or earthy aluminite. Upon this formation 
a rudely-crystalline gypseous deposit is superimposed in 
all the country around, but not in the immediate vicinity 
of the fountains. I could not detect any organic 

Mineral Accompaniments. — The mineral substances 
which occurred in the neighbourhood of the fountains, 
chiefly imbedded in the rocks ; were limonites or brown 
hematites, bituminous shales, and sulphur crystalline, 
greenish, shining, and earthy-yellow, puWerescent. 

Natural Historical Properties. — ^The temperature of 
No. 1 was 88° Fahr., of No. 2, 98". Ta«te, bitter-sweet. 
Water, clear transparent. Odour, ammoniacal sulphureous. 
Evolving gases in abundance, and emitting bitumen as a 
floating product; the estimation of the natives was 
many gallons per hour. Saline matters coated the sides 
of the fountain. 

The red Byssus thermalis {Embeida thermalisf) occu- 
pied parts of the bottom and stones at the exit of the 
waters, which were also sometimes coated with sulphur. 

Antiquity of Natural Historical Properties. — ^These 
natural historical properties appear to have remained un- 
changed for a great period of time. The historian Xiphi- 
linus (vol. ii., p. 117) describes it as a lake of sulphur, 
and Dion Cassius (vol. ii., p. 86) relates that the 


exhalation from the springs is so strong, that no animal 
nor bird could breathe it without dying. 

Qualitative Analysis. — ^The chemical properties of the 
water examined according to the principles of Berzelius, 
and afterwards of Gustavus Rose, were extremely simple. 
The first evidences obtained were of the existence of 
an acid, and of hydro-sulphuric- acid or sulphuretted 
hydrogen in excess ; which circumstance established, ex- 
cluded a whole body of substances from being in a state 
of solution, more particularly feroxides and the oxides of 
most metals, and the ferro-cyanates of potassium ; and a 
suspended nut-gall corroborated the first of these j&cts. 
The solution being neutralized by the addition of carbo- 
nate of ammonia to excess, an hydro-sulphuret of am- 
monia was obtained, without being accompanied by any 
precipitate, and alumina and some other products were 
thus excluded. Subsequently, the presence of chloride 
of sodium, and of the sulphates of sodium, of calcium, 
and of magnesium, were ascertained by the usual proce- 
dure in qualitative analysis. I regretted not to have it 
in my power to test for iodine and bromine. 

Theory of Chemical Actions and Geological Origin. — 
It might, from the nature of the circumstances above 
detailed, be considered by some, that the elevated tempe- 
rature of the waters was owing to the continuity of che- 
mical actions, by which new affinities were brought into 
play: the waters loading themselves with certain salts, 
while the sulphur of the sulphate of lime, united in part 
with the excess of hydrogen in compounds of carbon and 
hydrogen, probably existing in the form of naphtha, and 


evolving them in the form of bitumen, from an excess of 
carbon ; while the remainder passes off as a gaseous sul- 
phuretted hydrogen. I cannot but consider it much more 
consonant with the duration and constancy of so interest- 
ing a natural phenomenon, to suppose that the waters still 
retain the temperature of the inferior earth, or still more 
likely, of rock strata, where even superficial refrigeration 
has not yet arrived at an equality with the ambient air, 
being in this case, a remnant of the same action which gave 
birth to the gypseous formation. The circumstances by 
which a large developement of sulphureous gases from 
below would give origin to the decomposition of carbonate 
of lime to form a sulphate, would also act upon the solid 
or liquid form of carbon and hydrogen; sulphuretted 
hydrogen would be given off from an excess of hydrogen, 
and contained in solution in the water, would render it 
capable of dissolving carbonates of lime. Sulphur would 
be deposited on contact with the air, and the product of 
carbon and hydrogen, rendered solid by an excess of car- 
bon, would remain in the form of bitumen or petroleum. 
It is obvious that in the chemical affinities brought into 
action under either circumstance, the changes are more 
numerous than I have here ventured to detail ; my object 
being simply to give distinct conceptions of the nature of 
the phenomena in question, and not to pretend to grasp 
at a perfect and minute explanation of all the circum- 
stances attendant upon that phenomenon ; and which, by 
multiplying words, might only appear what Locke (Sect, 
xxix.) calls an artifice of learned vanity to cover a defect 
in an hypothesis or our understandings. 

Synonyrm of HiU — ^Hit has been designated as Is, 


Izzanesopolis, Ozogardana, in Ammianus ; and Zaragardia, 
in Zosimus ; also Eiopolis. It is probably the site of the 
Cavamanda of Xenophon, but this is one of the few cases 
in which distances are not given by that historian, and it 
is indeed only spoken of retrospectively. It is celebrated 
in modern times among the Persians, Turks, and Arabs. 
The Turks, to distinguish bitumen from naphtha, call it 
Kardk Sakiz (black mastic), the Arabs Geiser. 

It has been long admitted that by translating kopher, 
as has been done in the Septuagint version of the Bible, 
asphaltum, and in the Vulgate version, bitumen, that the 
ark was protected by mineral pitch ; and the circumstance 
is of interest from the assistance which it lends as a cor- 
roborative testimony, towards determining the country of 
the Noachian deluge. 

Extent of tlie Rock Fo^^matiom, — ^The rock formations 
which terminate in the west at the hills of Mesftd San- 
dabiyahy and to the east at the hilly district north of Felu- 
jah, and which include the Pylae of Xenophon, cannot 
be considered as extending above 60 miles in a direct 
line, or 87 by the windings of the river. Every- 
thing characteristic of solidity and durability has disap- 
peared. The plains are wide, the hills low, and the rock 
formations coarse, non-crystalline, and friable. To the 
east, the Meridj Sudb hills exhibit nothing but the 
straw-yellow limestones, and they are succeeded by sand- 
hills in steps called Lagobah; a little beyond, sections are 
afforded, which furnish green marles, gypsum, rudely 
laminar indurated marles, gypsum and marles in beds of 
a few feet in thickness. Gravel and mud repose upon 
these deposits. To the west is already an extended 


conntry of level pasture and fertile plains, backed by hills 
of marles and gypsum ; at the foot of which occur springs 
of naphtha ; and ultimately by low cliffs of clay, forming 
afterwards a low level and continuous territory. The 
alluvium is about six miles in extent to the west, and ten 
miles to the east. The alluvia to the east are interrupted 
by a low continuous upland, exhibiting rock gypsum at 
the summit, and finally terminating at the plains to the 
south. To the west, the alluvia are bounded by a low 
level upland, which ultimately curving round, bears the 
minaret of Mesjld Sandabiyah forward upon the Eu- 
phrates, constituting a remarkable point, which is visible 
from a great distance, from the uniformity of the country 
in almost every direction. 

General Results. — The principal object of contempla- 
tion in the structure, deposition, and developement of the 
rocks, of the basin of the river Euphrates, are the extent 
of the cretaceous and supra-cretaceous deposits, indiffe- 
rently called tertiary formations, superior order, clysmian 
rocks, and supra-cretaceous group. These formations 
occupy a space in a straight line of six degrees and a half 
of latitude, and among them the cretaceous and gypseous 
deposits assume by far the most extensive developement. 

The second fact is, the intercalation at the limits of 
the chalk formations ; of marles and gypsum, although 
not yet provided with lacustrine shells, in the cretaceous 
deposits. In this case, the intervening plastic clays and 
cerithia-limestone appear to be totally wanting, and gyp- 
seous deposits to have taken their place, a fact also illus- 
trative of the passage of the cretaceous into the supra- 
cretaceous formations. 


The developement of a great band of polypiferous 
and shelly limestone at 'Anah, between the gypsum of 
Jaber and that of the Moherah hills near Hit, would 
appear to assign a difference of age between the two, and 
a greatei* antiquity to the former, which is corroborated 
by other circumstances. 

The most striking peculiarities in the inferior gypsum, 
are the eruption of plutonic formations ; which eruption 
has evidently occurred at a period posterior to the eleva- 
tion of the Taurian chain, as the plutonic formations are 
superimposed upon the last deposit by transport, which 
contains pebbles from those regions. 

The next peculiarity of interest is the uplifting, sub- 
sequent to this, or coeval with the eruption of the igneous 
rocks, of limestone-breccia and gravel containing the 
bones of existing tribes of animals ; and consequently 
beneath the sea previous to that cataclysm. 

The tendency to a new order of things first manifests 
itself in the developement of a polypiferous marine clay, 
in the gypseous formations of Irzah. The latter deposit 
loses its pre-eminence, and is ultimately succeeded to the 
south by a formation of marine marles and limestones. 

But in the hilly districts, to the south of 'Anah, we 
observe a recurrence to the old order of things in the 
tendency to the production of sulphate of lime, but with 
new and different associations, ironstones and sandstones, 
but more particularly bituminous formations soon destined 
to feed fountains dating from a remote historical anti- 
quity, although so recent among the formations of the 

It is singular in contemplating this vast developement 
of tertiary or supra-cretaceous formations, to think that 


SO late as in 1827, we find geologists, (Leonhard, " Man. 
of Geol.," cap. 103 and 104,) then first admitting that 
these deposits can no longer be considered as a local 
foimation, but must take their place in the general series 
of the formations of the earth's crust, and in the " Geo- 
logical Manual" of Mr. Delabeche, published in 1832, 
the deposition of gypsum is accounted for by the springs 
of the districts in which that mineral rock occurs, be- 
coming loaded with sulphate of calcium. It is quite 
evident that such a theory is not adapted either to the 
nature of the present country, or still less to the area, 
exceeding eight hundred square miles, that is occupied by 
this formation in that part of Asia which neighbours the 
lower Euphrates. 


Researches on the latest Deposits by Transport 
(commonly called Diluvium) ; and on the Physi- 
cal Evidences of the Noachian Deluge, contained 
in the Basin of the Euphrates, and in the Plains 
OP Babylonia. 

General Character's of t/ie Formation. — ^There occurs 
throughout the course of the Euphrates, from Someisat 
to Fehijah, not continuous, but re-appearing at intervals, 
and occupying more or less extensive spaces, a forma- 
tion of transported gravel, pebbles, and rock ; which, by 
its position, its extent, its developement, and general 
associations, manifests itself as the latest deposit by trans- 
port which occurs in the territories through which the 
Euphrates flows, and which does not belong to actions at 
present in operation. 

Mineralogical Characters. — In the upper part of the 
river, this formation consists of pebbles of crystalline 
rocks ; comprising serpentine, serpentine and albite, dial- 
lage rock, diorites, jade, basalts, and abundant quartzes 
and jaspers. In the central districts, the pebbles consist 
almost entirely of flints, and in the lower portions of the 
river, and at the head of the alluvial plains of Babylonia, 
they are also flints, with small fragments of gjrpsum. 

Whence derived. — ^The characters of this deposit as it 
occurs in its upper portions, would indicate a formation 
which must have derived its origin from the chain of the 
Taunis, to which chain, and the outlying formations con- 


upwards of fifteen feet square, is excavated, and has an 
entrance into tlie interior, like the monolithic temples of 
Egypt and Hindostan. Not far to the north of this, and 
on the right bank, there is a low formation of masses of 
similarly indurated limestone, (the country around being 
composed of chalk, with interposed beds of limestone,) 
superimposed on crystalline breccia, and running upwards 
of a mile in a line as straight as a wall ; and which gives 
a first and strong impression of being artificially con- 

Changes in Mi7ieralogical Characters, — At Balis, the 
breccia consists of pebbles of flint in a calcareous, but 
more frequently, a siliceous cement. The pebbles are 
often of a considerable size, and the nodular portions of 
botryoidal alcyonic masses, being converted into so many 
separate spheroids, they do not appear, as usual, as if thoy 
were formed upon organic products, which is probably 
owing to a modification in the original form. They arc 
often hydrated, and are then brown and gray externally, 
sometimes striped. Where this breccia commences, 
about three miles to the north of Balis, it is a real silice- 
ous grit, becoming, at times, a slaty sandstone ; and at 
other places, beds of grit, alternate with beds of conglo- 
merate. It occupies the summit of the high cliffs which 
occur on the right bank of the river at this place, and 
spreads over the wilderness, forming the surface-soil 
of the level tracts from hence by the Ain el Zeheb to 
the neighbourhood of Aleppo. 

Whence derived. — Hitherto the superior formations by 
transport have been derived from the Taurian chain; 


but they now, in their propagation southward, present a 
predominance of substances which result from the dis- 
ruption of the chalk, and subsequently of the supra- 
cretaceous formations. 

Mineralogical Characters. — Opposite to the ancient 
Roman town of Sura, the breccia presents a predomi- 
nance of quartz pebbles, jaspers of various hues, and some 
rocks of the silico-magnesiferous series, becoming inland 
a sandstone often cavernous, and presenting cliffs of the 
same, alternating with breccia. 

Large Masses of Gypsum. — ^At El Haman (the adopted 
Thapsacus of the Expedition), on the right bank, a forma- 
tion of breccia of similar nature contains huge masses of 
crystalline transparent gypsum, consisting of di-hedral 
crystals irregularly disposed, the masses, often six feet 
in diameter, were inferiorly smooth and convex; supe- 
riorly concave and rudely crystalline. This breccia 
reposes upon fresh-water marles and gypsum. 

Basalts superposed to the Formation of Transport.-^ 
A very long tract of level country is interrupted in the 
descent of the river, at the site of the city of Zenobia, 
by a range of hills forming the continuation of the Jebel 
Bushlr, and which are composed of gypsum and marles, 
breccia and sandstone, and superimposed basalts. 

The lower beds of this formation alternated with the 
upper beds of the marles of the gypsum deposit. 

Evidence of recent Changes. — ^There is, in these cir- 



cumstances, the distinct evidence of the production, on 
the surface of the Arabian plain, of a great formation of 
Plutonic rocks, extending from Palmyrene, to which they 
give fertility by breaking up the continuity in the level 
of the soil, hence bringing water, to beyond the Euphrates 
at Zenobia ; and which are superior to the last change 
that has taken place in the configuration of the soil to 
the north of the Bushir hills, and which extends between 
them and Taurus. 

Whether accompanied by a Catach/sm.-r—The manner 
in which these rocks were produced or given birth to, will 
be considered by many geologists as being still a theore- 
tical question; but the question as to whether or not 
their appearance on the surface of the Arabian plain was 
attended not only by a change in aspect and configuration 
of the soil, but also by a cataclysm more or less partial, 
more or less general, according to the circumscribed 
nature, or the universality, of the formation; will be 
answered by the further detail of the geological monu- 
ments of this phenomenon ; while the question whether 
the elevation of the land, produced by the same cataclysm, 
did not extend in a particular direction, will also be 
answered by the simple investigation of the nature of the 
next transported deposits in succession. 

Breccia has no superposed Deposits to the North. — It 
has already been observed, that to the north of the Bushfr 
hills, the breccia on which the rocks of the feldspatho- 
pyroxenic series are there deposited, have no formations 
superimposed upon them, excepting such as are traceable 
to the action of local causes. 


Has superposed Formations to the South. — But to the 
south of the Bushir hills, and in the neighbourhood of 
Dejr, there occurs an extensive clay formation, often 
argillo-calcareous, and sometimes coloured with fer-oxides; 
which is new in its characters, and communicates to the 
soil a degree of aridity and barrenness that surpasses 
anything presented by the higher Euphrates. 

Ossiferom Breccia of Rahahdh. — ^At Rahabah (Reho- 
both), the clay formation is red-coloured argillo-calcareous^ 
with argillaceous septaria, and contains the bones of 
quadrupeds and birds, among which I obtained the head 
of a jerboa, identicaj, in its dentition, with lone of the 
present species inhabiting the plains of Arabia. This 
formation is covered by a bed of hard limestone breccia, 
of a red colour, and somewhat similar aspect, but more 
compact than the ossiferous breccia of Gibraltar. 

Selenitic Sandstone of Rahabah, — These two beds 
repose upon the crystalline breccia, which here presents 
the usual characters, but alternates with selenitic sand- 
stone, or sands impregnated with sulphate of lime, and 
rendered solid and subcrystalline. Below the selenitic 
sandstone, is an ordinary grit sandstone and pebbly deposit; 
and beneath these, cretaceous marles, with some bitumen; 
coarse sands, and sandstones ; marles, and gypsum. 

Proofs of Foi^mation hy Transport — We have here 
then, by the superposition of the red ossiferous breccia 
upon the breccia of siliceous and silico-magnesiferous 
rocks, decided evidence of the existence of waters, in the 

G 2 


lands south of the Bushir hills, posteriorly to the deposi- 
tion of the last-mentioned breccia. From its occurrence 
to the south of these hills, and not to the north, it would 
appear that the elevating influence upon the land was 
communicated chiefly in a southerly direction; and from 
the contained pebbles, and peculiar organic remains, it 
would appear that that elevation was attended by a 
catyclysm, somewhat like a flood, or the sudden retiring 
of waters. 

Ossiferous Breccia independent of Tauric Breccia. — 
That this catyclysm was posterior to, and not contempo- 
raneous with, the flood which bore the fragments of the 
Taurus to the remote extremities of Irak Arabia; is 
demonstrated by the circumstance of the basalts being 
superimposed upon these transported deposits, and by 
the similar superposition of a transported rock of dif- 
ferent characters and of different origin, upon the Tauric 
breccia in its furthermost propagation. 

Period of the Building ofRehoboth. — In the remote, but 
yet interesting relation which we may venture to make 
between the certainties of Scripture, and tlie uncertain 
indications of natural phenomena ; it may be observed, 
that Rehoboth was built, according to the authorized 
version of the Bible, by Asshur ; but, according to the 
marginal reading, by Nimrod, who went out of the land 
of Shinar into that of Asshur, and builded Nineveh 
(Musul), the city Rehoboth (Rahabah), and Calah (Cala- 
nicum, Rakkah;) and between Nineveh and Rehoboth, 
Resen ; (the Larissa of Xenophon, the modern Nimrud.) 
The proximate determination of these four sites, by 


limiting the country of Asshur, are of equal interest to 
geology, and to historical geography. Hence, confining 
ourselves at present to Rahabah, it was only after this 
secondary (speaking geologically) catastrophe, as indicated 
in the succession of formations, that Rehoboth had its 

Nori'Contemporaneity of Tauric Breccia and Deluge. — It 
is presumable, then, from the facts detailed above, that the 
formation by transport, extending nearly from the sources 
of the Euphrates to its mouth, was not produced by the 
Noachian deluge; because there are evidences of the 
existence of a cataclysm, subsequent to that which gave 
origin to said formation. Further, there is proof in the 
positioning of the land of Asshur, that such a secondary 
cataclysm has also not occurred at a period subsequent to 
the Noachian deluge, or after the building of Rehoboth ; 
while, on the contrary, physically, there is every reason 
to suppose that this cataclysm, characterised by its 
ossiferous breccia, was, like that which is characterised by 
Taurian pebbles, anterior to the Deluge of Scripture ; nor 
is it likely, that had so important an event happened 
between the period of the journeying of the sons of the 
patriarch, or of the building of Babel, and the inhabiting 
the land of Asshur ; it would have been omitted in the 
sacred records. 

Red Limestone Breccia. — ^At Salahlyah, the soil is 
occupied by a foniiation of red limestone breccia, which 
is exceedingly hard and compact. This formation extends 
far and wide over the terrestrial expanse, which is in con- 
sequence everywhere but a naked ^nd stony soil, level as 


an alluvial plain, and silent in its boundless solitudes, as 
a desert of moving sand. 

Tamic Breccia awarding. — ^The Tauric breccia is here 
awanting, and the limestone conglomerate reposes upon 
fresh-water marles, with veins of crystalline and lamellar 
gypsum, themselves superimposed on compact cretaceous 
marles and contemporaneous beds of saccharoidal gypsum. 

Transported masses of Gypsum. — ^The ruins of the 
Israelite city of Irzah are perched upon a ridge of cliffs, 
which interrupt the continuity of the plain between Sala- 
hiyah and El Kayim. Here the ossiferous breccia again 
manifests itself near the summit of the cliff, but it is in 
part covered by a deposit of masses of crystalline gypsum 
cropping out on the surface-soil like a figured floor or 

At El Kayim, the Tauric breccia, 20 feet in depth, is 
observed reposing on fresh-water marles; and between 
El Kayim and 'Anah, low cliffs of marles are covered by 
H thin deposit of red clay. 

Broum Sandstone and Ironstone. — A very hilly country, 
which extends from 'Anah to Hadisah, and the features 
of which are described in the Report upon the Basin of 
the Euphrates; presents us with a sandstone of new 
characters, and with a formation of rubbly ironstone rock, 
capping the more extended deposits of gypsum and 
marles, which first began to alternate with clays, con- 
taining marine polypiferous lithophytes, at Irzah ; wliich 
clays now assume a maximum developement, and become 
highly saliferous : while various bituminous products 


begin to show themselves amid the same variable and 
nmnerous beds. 

Alternations of these Rocks. — At the same time, the 
Tauric breccia shows itself upon the steep summits of 
the generality of hills, having sandstone or ironstone 
superimposed; beneath are chloritous marles, gypsum, 
coarse rock, deeply impregnated with bitumen, marles 
and gypsum, saliferous clays. The sandstone alternates 
with the breccia or gravel, and the same with the iron- 
stone, and ^both again are found alternating with the 
upper marles of the gypsum. The coarse bituminous 
rock is found sometimes associated with the ironstone, 
more frequently in the gypsum, more or less proximately 
to the saliferous clays. 

Geological Relations. — It is obvious, from the position 
and alternations of these brown sandstones and dark- 
coloured ironstones, that their relation to the deposits of 
transport, is the same as that of the ossiferous breccia and 
clays with septaria of the upper country; and that conse- 
quently their origin is connected with questions of topo- 
graphical geology which it would be out of place to discuss 

Last Deposits by Transport — No deposit by transport 
occupies the surface-soil around the bituminous fountains of 
Hit; but at a very short distance to the south, a formation 
of clay and gravel, with fragments of gypsum, reposes 
upon, and alternates with, chloritous and fer-oxidated 
marles of the gypsum formation. This is the last of the 


deposits by transport that is met with in that portion of 
the basin of the Euphrates which presents a rocky soil. 

Amount of Time. — In the connexion which remains 
to be established between the Scriptural records of the 
Noachian deluge, and the physical evidences of that 
catastrophe ; it is necessary to remark, that although the 
period at which the fathers of nations arrived in the 
land of Shinar, is nowhere expressly mentioned in Scrip- 
ture ; still it is generally admitted that this occurrence 
took place at no great distance of time after the Flood. 
According to all the versions of the Scriptures, the death 
of the patriarch Noah happened in the 350th year after 
the Deluge. Now, whether or not the building of the 
Tower of Babel — the immediate cause of the dispersion 
— commenced during Noah's lifetime or not ; still we are 
certain that it had proceeded to its ultimate extent in the 
lifetime of Peleg (Gen. x. 25), whose birth, if we follow 
the Samaritan and Septuagint versions, occurred in the 
401 st year after the Deluge. If, on the contrary, we 
follow the chronology of the Hebrew text, the distance 
of time between the Flood and the dispersion is still less. 

Ea^tent of Alluvium. — It is to be regretted that, in the 
most careful manner in which abstracts can be made on 
questions in history, they always entail more diffuseness 
than questions of science ; but having premised the above 
facts, it remains to point out that if the site of Babylon 
is admitted to be that of the Tower of Babel, a theory for 
which there is no direct proof, but very strong presump- 
tive, as well as circumstantial, evidence ; then as the site 
is separated by a wide extent of deposits of a different 


nature from the latest deposits of transport which belong 
to the basin of the Euphrates ; it is evident that it is im- 
possible to reconcile the supposition of these latest de- 
posits by transport being identical with the Noachian 
deluge, and of the deposits which intervene between 
them and the soil of the Tower of Babel, having been 
deposited in the short interval of time between the 
Deluge and the dispersion of mankind. 

Incompatibility of Amount of Time. — For, as there 
occurs, at a rough calculation (and the boundaries of the 
alluvium and of the latest deposits by transport are not 
traceable to within a mile,) a distance equal to, at the 
least, 70 miles, between the limits of the latter and the 
plain of Babylon ; then, if we grant the utmost latitude 
of time, or 400 years, as having elapsed between the 
period of the Deluge and that of the erection of the 
tower, there would have been an increase of land, ave- 
raging 298 yards per annum, — a quantity by far sur- 
])assing the calculations of those who have computed the 
advance of the alluvium of the basin of the Euphrates 
and the Tigris at their highest estimate (Beke, " Origines 
Biblic^," and " Phil. Mag.," vol. vi.. No. 36), and, besides, 
inconsistent altogether with the rate of progress of the 
alluvium of that basin at the present day, and which, 
under all the favourable circumstances of an united delta, 
does not, as will be shown in treating upon the alluvia, 
exceed 30 yards per annum. 

Characters of the Euphratic Alluvium. — ^Already, from 
the neighbourhood of Zenobia, the valley of the Eu- 
phrates is here and there occupied by clays, remarkable 


for containing an excess of chloi-ide of sodium, or marine 
salt, which effloresces by solution and evaporation. This 
deposit gradually increases in extent till it occupies plains 
often of 10 to 12 miles deep along the borders of the 
river ; at length, at Mesjid Sandabiyah, it extends itself 
on both sides of the horizon, to the exclusion of all other 
formations, as far as the eye can reach. 

Isolated Mounds, — ^The only exception to this, is the 
occasional occurrence of isolated and circumscribed ele- 
vations of land, which rise scarcely more than 20 feet 
above the level of the plains in which they occur, like 
islands in a lake or sea, and to which appellation they 
were, probably, strictly entitled at one period of their 
existence. These mounds are found to consist of trans- 
ported material, chiefly flint, pebbles, and fragments of 
gypsum, and to underlie the alluvium which has not been 
deposited in sufficient quantities to cover them, whether 
their summit was or was not above the level of the 
waters. They are remarkable as being spots which most 
frequently furnish a little brackish water in the desert, 
and hence become the site of caravanserais, as Khan 
Iskendiriah on the Babylonian plain, which is an example 
of this formation. 

Hecapittdation. — It has then, to a certain extent, been 
demonstrated, by a reference to Scriptural authority and 
to physical evidences, that the latest deposits by transport 
do not owe their existence to the Noachian deluge ; and 
it appears that, between the period of the cataclysm which 
accompanied these last deposits and the erection of the 
Tower of Babel, there has been a period of time sufficient 


to allow of the deposition of a superimposed alluvium of 
considerable extent. 

Ante-Noachian Alluvia, — The alluviuni of the Eu- 
phrates divides itself, then, distinctly into that which was 
ante-Babylonian (being also ante-Noachian) and that 
which is post-Babylonian; and the comparatively large 
extent of ante-Babylonian alluvium contains whatever 
matters the great cataclysm, which occurred when " all 
the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the 
windows of heaven were opened," deposited upon the 
surface of the earth. Mr. Beke (op. cit.) has, from a 
novel interpretation of the Hebraic, strengthened by 
illustrations from Scriptural authority, read fountains of 
the great deep as clouds; whether this version is the 
correct one or not, the physical evidences traceable, of 
this great event, have been sought for and detailed in the 
present report. 


Description and Progress of the Alluvial Districts 
OF Babylonia, CnALDiEA, and Susiana. 

Part I. 

Geography of the Alluvial Districts. — ^Tbe alluvia of the 
plains of Babylonia, Chaldaea, and Susiana, to which may 
be added Sitacene and Mesene; include all the river, 
lake, and newer marine deposits, at the head of the 
Persian Gulf. They are comprehended in entity under 
the ancient geographical divisions, while, under the 
modern, they occupy portions of Arabia, Irak Arabia, 
Jezirah, Turkish Arabia, Khusistan, and the country of 
the Ka'b Sheik or Ka'ban. 

EMent of Alluvia. — These deposits occupy an extent 
of about 32,400 square geographic miles, and the rivers 
from which they are derived, with the exception of that 
portion of the ante-Babylonian alluvium which may have 
been in part deposited by the Noachian deluge, are the 
Euphrates and its tributaries, the Tigris and its tribu- 
taries, the Kerah or Karasu, the Kardn and its tribu- 
taries, the Jerahi, and the Indiyan. 

EMent of River Basins. — The extent of the hydrogra- 
phical basin of the Euphrates, notwithstanding the great 
length of the river, cannot, on account of the narrowness 


of the band of territory from which its few tributaries 
flow, or which is covered by the residue of its floods, 
more particularly in the southerly or lower portion, be 
estimated at more than 108,000 geographic square miles. 
The basin of the Tigris may be considered as enclosing 
an area of 36,000 geographic miles. The united systems 
of the Shat el Hud and Kerah occupy a territory equal to 
18,000 miles. The basin of the Karun may be estimated 
at 16,400 geographic miles, and that of the Jerahi and 
Indiyan at 10,800 square miles, and thus the Euphrates, 
Tigris, and Susianic systems constitute altogether a vast 
hydrographical basin of 189,200 geographic square miles, 
containing within itself a central deposit of 32,400 miles 
of alluvia, almost entirely brought down by the waters of 
these various rivers, and which have been accumulating 
from periods long antecedent to all historical records. 

Nature of Country through which the Rivers flow. — ^AU 
these rivers present the peculiarity of flowing, for a great 
part of their course, through supra-cretaceous formations 
of a very friable nature, easily disintegrated by the action 
of the elements, and still more so by that of running 
waters when swollen by flood, and carrying down pebbles. 

Comparative Inclination of Rivers. — ^The bed of Eu- 
phrates at Bir, a distance of 1197 miles by water, from 
the Persian Gulf; is, according to the results obtained by 
the carefully-executed levelling of Mr. Thomson, of the 
Expedition, 628 feet 4 inches above the level of the 
Mediterranean. The average inclination would appear, 
from this, to be 6*354 in. a mile ; but this is much in- 
fluenced by the occurrence of rapids, as at 'Anah, and 


probably by the difference of level between the Persian 
Gulf and the Mediterranean, which cannot be supposed 
to be less than that of the Red Sea and the Mediter- 
ranean, or about 30 feet. 

The river Tigris, which has its sources at a proximate 
elevation of 5050 feet, and is at Musul, by barometrical 
observation, about 353 feet above the level of the Persian 
Gulf; has a moderate current below Baghdad, but passes 
over several ledges of rock in its course from Musul to 
that cityj forming rapids of greater or less importance. 
It is the same with regard to the Karun, which, tolerably 
swift in the mountain districts, and with rapids at Hawaz, 
is a remarkably slow river on the alluvial plain. 

Force of Current. — ^The rapidity of the stream of 
Euphrates varies in different places ; in the depressions 
of the alluvial plain it is often not a mile an hour, but 
over the dry ground, as at Kal'at Gerah, it runs nearly 
three miles an hour ; at Hillah, where the stream is con- 
fined, it flowed four knots through the bridge ; the Upper 
Euphrates averages from three to four miles. The current 
of Tigris, notwithstanding its hereditary fame for swift- 
ness, is in the alluvial plain often less than a mile an 
hour, and averages one mile and a half throughout ; at 
Musul, during the time of the flood, it averaged not 
more than four miles. The current of the Karun, in the 
alluvial plain and as far as Bund-i-Kil, averaged one mile 
and a half an hour. 

Quantity of Mud brought doum.^-^The period at which 
the waters of Euphrates are most loaded with mud, are 
in the first floods of January ; the gradual melting of the 


snows in early summer, which preserve the high level of 
the waters, do not at the same time contribute much 
sedimentary matter. From numerous experiments made 
at Bir in December and January, 1836, I found the maxi- 
mum of sediment mechanically suspended in the waters 
to be equal to ^th part of the bulk of fluid, or every 
cubic inch of water contained Ath part of its bulk of 
suspended matters ; and from similar experiments, insti- 
tuted in the month of October of the same year, at the 
issue of the waters from the Lemlum marshes, I only 
obtained a maximum of ^hrth. part of a cubic inch of 
water (mean temp. 74°). The sediments of the river 
Euphrates, which are not deposited in the upper part of 
the river's course, are finally deposited in the Lemlum 
marshes. In navigating the river in May, 1836, the water 
flowing into the marshes was coloured deeply by mud, 
but left the marshes in a state of comparative purity, and 
this is equally remarkably, the case in the Chaldean 
marshes below Omu el BSk, " the Mother of Musquitoes." 
The maximum afforded by the river Tigris was also, 
on the occasion of a sudden rise on January 8th, 1837 
(mean temp. 49°), found to be equal to rJirth part of a 
cubic inch, or by weight 2*6 grains in 240 grains of fluid. 
Hence in the river at Baghdad, which averages 200 yards 
in width, and four feet in depth, the current flowing at the 
time five inches an hour, the quantity of mud borne past 
in that time amounts to about 7150 pounds. The mud 
of Tigris is not carried into marshes as in the river Eu- 
phrates, but in great part deposited in banks, shoals, and 
islands, which, from their frequent occurrence in the lower 
part of the bed of the river, communicate to it a very 
different character from the river Euphrates, which, in 


its lowermost reaches, is almost unifonnly deep. The 
river Tigris probably contributes, from the same circum- 
stances, more alluvial matters to the Delta of the Persic 
Gulf than the river Euphrates. 

Physical Geography of t/ie Alluvial Districts. — It is 
unnecessary here to recapitulate the numerous tributaries 
of the rivers Euphrates and Tigris in the higher regions, 
but upon the actual physical geography of the alluvial 
districts, it will be necessary to enter a little into detail, 
as the ancient condition of the territory, and consequently 
the progress of changes still in action, can only be ascer- 
tained by determining, as nearly as possible, the relation 
of their past and present condition, which involves us in 
questions of descriptive and historical geography. It is 
in order to avoid the confusion which would be entailed 
by treating all these subjects at once, that I have divided 
the present memoir into two parts, reserving the first 
solely for physical descriptions, and the second for those 
considerations which have, for the most part, an artificial 
or historical origin. It has, at the same time, been my 
endeavour to keep the oearing of these two orders of 
considerations with one another constantly in view, and, 
I hope, as clearly as could be done without having recourse 
to unnecessary detail and repetitions. 

Circumscription of tlie Alluvia, — ^In the line of the 
river Euphrates the limits of the alluvia are met with, to 
the north in low hills and undulating land of tertiary 
rock formations, which advance to the banks of Euphrates 
at Mesjid Sandabiyah, cross the river about eight miles 
above Felujah or Aiibar, and at the Pylge of Xenophon 


rise in low hills above the plain of Babylonia, and towards 
Tigris are lost in the plains traversed by the Median wall. 

Limits to the West — ^The westerly prolongation of the 
alluvial formations is circumscribed by a line of rock and 
sand, which stretches beyond the Rumiyah or Bahr Nesjed 
(whither tradition carried the sea in ancient time), a very 
little to the west of the Shat el 'Utchan, and the Samowat 
branch of Euphrates. The Pallacopas of Alexander was, 
according to Arrian, in part hewn in solid rock. Springs 
of clear water flow from the rock districts west of Samo- 
wat. Hills of maritime sands and of transported pebbles 
flank the great plain occupied by the Muntifik Arabs in 
the neighbourhood of Orchoe and of Kusrah, and lastly 
the marine formations underlie moving sands at Ghorein, 
near the ancient Gerrha, and at Zobeir, near the site of 
old Basrah. 

Limits to the East. — ^The same formation is everywhere 
limited to the east by the low range of Persian subapen- 
nines, designated as the Hamerun hills, composed of 
tertiary sandstones, with salt, gypsum, and limestones, 
and which stretch, with few interruptions, along the plain 
at the foot of the Persian Apennines, or loftier ranges of 
Kurdistan, Susistan, and Baktiyari, from the Persian Gulf 
to Tigris, which they cross a little to the south of the 
parallel of Erbil, and ultimately mingle themselves with 
the undulating country of tertiary rock formations be- 
longing to the district of El 'Hathr, the antique Atra. 

It is natural to suppose that the extent inland of the 
alluvia of the Kerah, Karun, Jerah and the Indiyan should 
give to those territories in the province of Khusistan a 



greater developement eastward than occurs in the basin 
of Tigris ; but the confines of the alluvia are in reality 
circumscribed. On the Kerah, above Hawlsah ; and at 
Hawaz, on the Karun ; the supra-cretaceous rocks rise 
above the level of the modem fluviatile or lacustrine 
alluvia ; and so closely are the deposits circumscribed by 
the prolongation southward of the Persic subapennines, 
that, not far from the mouth of the Indiyan, the Zeitun, 
or olive-tree hills (as that portion is designated), advance 
into the bay of Deri Bunah by the rocky islets of Bunah 
and Akiyarin, and ultimately supersede the recent de- 
posits to the very shore, at Shat el Sheik and Bund i 

Physical Features of the Persian Svbapennines. — 
The hilly ranges variously denominated Hameriin, Ham- 
rine, and Hamerin, according as the Arabic or Persian 
orthography has been used, and which I have designated 
as the Persian Subappenines, fonn, for the most part, 
long and continuous low ranges of hills, which course 
from the north-west to south-east, with some deviation in 
the angle of direction, or strike of the rocks, as to the 
north of the little Zab, where the westerly range stretch- 
ing about 20° more to the west of north than the easterly 
one, the two ranges, thus separated, leave between them 
the plain of Erbil. 

They are also sometimes not portions of a continuous 
range, but local elevations upon lines of greater or less 
extent. The thinness of the beds, the great regularity of 
the stratification, the friability of the rock, and the infre- 
quency of vegetation, give to these ranges the character 
of walls on the desert. In some places, there is a total 


solution in continuity, as in the plain of Hawisah, whoNi 
no rocks rise up above the level of the surrounding bws 
fece ; but in these cases, it not unfrequently happens that 
the formations may be traced by the alternating seams of 
different nature and various colours which are observed 
upon the naked ground. 

Geological Characters. — At Deli 'Abbas, at the Bund 
upon the 'Athfm or Physcus, and alotxg the rocky 
boundaries of the great plain east of Baghdad, the hilly 
ranges, always distinct, form narrow bands, parallel to 
one another, and rising to an altitude of about 500 feet. 
The strata dip almost constantly to the east a little north, 
presenting abrupt acclivities to the west, sloping more 
gently to the east. The same direction of dip and of 
strata is observed at Hawaz, but where the rocks cross 
the river Tigris at Shirgat, and effect an union with the 
tertiary formations of Mesopotamia, there is much irre- 
gularity of stratification. 

At 'Uslan on Tigris, the formations consist of coarse 
limestone, underlying yellow and red marles, and caver- 
nous gypsum, which are again sometimes covered by red 
and gray sandstones. At Shirgat, the sandstones predo- 
minate to the exclusion of the calcareous deposits, and 
the gypsum is reduced to thin beds. , At the Physcus, 
blueish sandstone, with cream-coloured veins, is succeeded 
by coarse red sandstone and sandstone conglomerate, with 
occasional thin veins of gypsum and brown earth-coloured 
beds ; these formations are covered by a non-contempora- 
neous pebbly deposit, which occupies the summits of the 
highest hills, always reposing horizontally upon rocks 

H 2 


inclined at various angles. At Hawaz, the rocks are 
sandstones of various colours, non-fossiliferous, alternating 
with red clays, which contain thin seams of gypsum. 

Physical Characters of ilie Babylonian Alluvia. — ^The 
physical characters of the alluvia of Babylonia are best 
studied in their progress from the north to the south, or 
from the hills to the embouchure of the rivers. Thus, 
in the alternating low and high territory at the foot of 
Pylae of Xenophon, and along the course of the Median 
wall towards. Opis, the plains have a slight but well- 
defined southerly inclination, with local sinkings above 
Felujah, near Aker Kuf, and at Sitace. The territory 
undulates in the central districts, and then lowers into 
mere marshes and lakes. 

In the most northerly portion, the soil is pebbly, the 
pebbles consisting almost solely of variously-coloured 
flints, and occasional small fragments of gypsum. This 
is succeeded by a continuous formation of clayey soil, in 
part humus, in part argillaceous and argillo-calcareous, 
but covered with mould, dust, or sands, or the more tena- 
cious clay of frequent inundations. It is rare that the 
pebbly deposits show themselves to the south of a line 
drawn across from Felujah to Aker Kuf; but small cir- 
cumscribed deposits by transport are occasionally met with, 
islanded amidst these vast tracts of alluvium, as at Khan 
Iskundiria, and in other spots, the geological relations of 
which have been pointed out in that portion of the work 
which treats upon the diluvium of these countries. 

Ante and Post Babylonian Alluvia. — In the portion 
here noticed, in discussing the connexion of the physical 


characters of the soil with the Scriptural records of the 
Noachian Deluge, I have distinguished, for the sake of ac- 
curacy, the alluvia of Babylonia into those which are ante- 
rior to the congregation of the first post-diluvian families 
on the banks of the Euphrates, and those which have 
been deposited at a period subsequent to that earliest of 
migrations. It is evident that the first of these divisions 
comprises all the deposits which are north of the recog- 
nised site of Babel, or Babylon, extending in a straight 
line a distance of 70 miles, and which distance suggested 
the great improbability of such a vast deposit having had 
its origin between the period of the Deluge and that of 
the building of the Tower, or during a space of less than 
500 years, and obliged me to admit that the Ante-Baby- 
lonian alluvia were, in part, the physical monuments of 
the Deluge of Scripture, if not also ante-Noachian 

Moving Sand-hills. — In one spot near Bushiyah, and 
about ten miles beyond the south-east quarter of ancient 
Babylon, a curious phenomenon presents itself, which is 
also met with upon a larger scale at a spot denominated 
El Aiyat (j^T), a miracle, or lyad (jU), large heap of 
sand, and Wilayat {h}^ Beni Ismael, dominions of the 
sons of Ismael, between the 'Athim or Physcus and Tigris, 
and also south of El Hathr. It consists of a number of 
hills of sand, occurring upon a level plain, which are con- 
stantly shifting their place and number, and yet always 
remain in the same general locality. They appear to owe 
their existence to the presence of springs, which moisten 
the sand, and cause its accumulation, allowing, at the 
same time, the prevalent winds to alter the form apd 


number of the hills, while their bases have a fixed point 
of attraction* They are objects of superstition to the 
Arabs, who often look upon them as the sepulchral pall 
of brethren fallen in battle, as in the " dominion of the 
sons of Ismael." 

Geographical Botantf. — ^The woolly and spiny plants 
of the plains and rocky tracts of Arabia and Mesopo- 
tamia are in the alluvial plains dismissed, to make way for 
succulent species. The genera Crassula, Salicomia, Sal- 
Sola, and Tragia, with certain Mesembryanthema and 
Asterd, cover with their representatives the plains of Baby- 
lonia, and spread themselves wherever the alluvial soil, 
impregnated with nitre or marine salt, occupies, as it so 
Constantly does, the great level tracts of Babylonia, 
Chaldaea, and Busiana. 

Efflorescences of Nitre and of Sea-salt — It is of im- 
portance to distinguish between the efflorescences of 
nitrate of potassium, and of chloride or hydro-chlorate of 
Sodium, both of which are common on these plains, for 
the one is most probably derived chiefly from the decom- 
position of vegetable matters, and consequently peculiarly 
characteristic of humus, or of alluvium of fluviatile or 
lacustrine origin, while the other is no less strongly indi- 
cative of depositions from the sea or bays, unless when 
they aire local deposits produced by springs or otherwise, 
as id so often the case with formations of salmarite, or 
i^oick-salt in the supra-cretaceous rocks. 

The efflorescences of nitre, which are also frequently 
dfccompanied with other salts, more particularly natron 
(carbonate of soda,) and the isulphate of soda, were most 


abundant in December ; although there had been no rain, 
still the dews were increased in quantity, and many tracts 
in the lower Tigris became almost snow-white. Is a low 
temperature favourable to the crystallization of nitrate of 
potassium, or is the phenomenon connected with the 
increased amount of de\vs ? Evaporation is certainly not 
increased, nor are the relations of radiated and ambient 
caloric much more opposed than in summer. 

A curious exudation of moisture, generally accompa- 
nied with saline efflorescences, which become visible 
when that moisture is evaporated by the sun, is frequently 
to be observed after long-continued dry weather upon the 
alluvial plains. It appears towards the evening, and 
causes the surface-soil to rise up as in bubbles ; these dry 
again, and break up in crackling fragments. Marine salt, 
which absorbs moisture freely, renders plains, which, as in 
Ka'ban, are covered with it, moist in the morning, but 
dry in the day time. 

Annual Inundations and Canals. — ^The modem accu- 
mulations of soil in Babylonia, from annual inundations, 
is still very great. The canals which, in the present day, 
carry water from one river to the other at certain seasons 
of the year, are, to the north, the Isa, which originates 
from Euphrates to the north of Felujah, and inundates, 
for six months, the whole country around Aker Ktif and 
Sitace, and leaving marshes which are perpetual in the 
same districts, part of its waters are carried off by a 
canal dug by Dawad Pasha, and bearing his name ; other 
canals of irrigation are drawn from the same source, as 
the 'SgSyer Elkher and the Tiber Elkher. The Isa is 
known to the DilaTm Arabs by the name of Abu Oheraib. 


The Dawadbiyah canal empties itself into Tigris three miles 
south of Baghdad. The Nahr Zimberaniyah is another 
canal, about four miles north of Seleucia, which, in the 
period of flood, inundates the whole country to the west 
of that site, and bears to the Tigris a body of water 
averaging three feet in depth, and twenty in width. The 
Muhawll and the Nil canals, are the only other canals 
containing water that I am acquainted with in Babylonia 
Proper, unless under that head was introduced the de- 
scription of the various smaller canals of irrigation which 
water the country of Mussaibah, celebrated for its to- 
bacco called Hassanl, and those still in existence in the 
neighbourhood of Hillah, and which overflow the lands 
west of the Birs Nimrud. 

The quantity of recent mud deposited even at the 
mouth of the Dawadhiyah canal is considerable, and the 
bricks of Seleucia are found often in strata by the river- 
side, covered by four feet of alluvium. In general, the 
alluvium that is brought down by canals and rivulets, and 
deposited at their mouths, is a fine clay. It is easily dis- 
tinguishable from older alluvia by its dividing during the 
summer heat into polyhedral masses, which are the more 
regular as the substance of the clay is finer. 

Changes effected by Art — ^The great extent of the 
plain of Babylonia is everywhere altered by artifical 
works ; mounds rise upon the otherwise uniform level ; 
walls, and mud ramparts, and dykes intersect each other ; 
elevated masses of friable soil and pottery are succeeded 
by low plains, inundated during great part of the year ; 
and the antique beds of canals are visible in every direc- 
tion. There is still some cultivatiou p,nd some irrigation. 


Flocks pasture in meadows of the coarse grasses (sedges 
and Cyperacese) — the Arabs' dusky encampments are met 
with here and there — but except on Euphrates' banks, 
there are few remains of the date-groves, the vineyards, 
and the gardens, which adorned the same land, in the days 
of Artaxerxes ; and still less of the population and labour, 
which must have made a garden of such a soil, in the 
times of Nebuchadnezzar. 

Boundaries of Bahylonia. — ^The plain of Babylonia, 
strictly so called, extends from Pylae on Euphrates, to the 
district of Accad or Sitacene, on Tigris ; and is bounded 
on the south by the marshes of Lemlum. These pre- 
sent on their eastern side, and near to Tigris, some dry 
land tenanted by the Zobeid Arabs, and occupied by the 
Babylonian mounds of Uffrin, Nimalah, Jerrah Supli, 
'Ithahr, and Mizisithah, which formed the link between 
the territories of the north and the south, — the Babylonia 
and Chaldsea of the Roman ages. 

Physical Charactei's of the Marshes of Lemlum. — ^The 
soil of the marshes of Lemlum consists, for the most part, 
of a soft alluvial clay and mud, containing only river and 
lacustrine shells. The greater part of the basin is, how- 
ever, occupied by water or by vegetation, in which the 
preponderance of Cyperacese and Typhacea;, and of large 
Gramineaj, announce, as in the temperate zone, the aquatic 
character of the country, and a comparatively cold and 
humid climate. The shallow sheets of water which are 
dispersed amidst this marsh of reed and rush, like the 
tarns of Scotland, the meres of England, and the mares 
of France, are generally invaded by a host of Alismacese, 


Nymphaceae, and Ranunculacese. These marshes feed 
large floQks of buffaloes, and the mud that is not covered 
by vegetation, or which is dried by the summer heat, 
becomes, during the season, clothed with luxuriant crops 
of rice. The wild and robber inhabitants of these dis- 
tricts, celebrated for their fine forms ; appear, like wading 
birds, to have, from constant living in mud and water, 
long and graceful limbs. They belong to the tribe of 
Kheza'il, are Shiites, and descendants of a Persian race. 
They live in reed huts, temporarily erected on isolated 
dry spots, like islets in a wilderness of waters ; but these 
are very frequently flooded, and it is no uncommon thing 
to see the children swing in cradles attached to the roof, 
while the waters are flowing through the arched cottage, 
in an uninterrupted stream. 

Geographical Ea^tent. — ^These marshes extend in lati- 
tude from above the town of Lemlum to Kalat el Gerah 
(Gerah) in the parallel of Samowat, a distance of about 
40 miles; and their longitudinal extent is probably almost 
equal to their length, being only limited on the west by 
the slightly undulating lands above the Samowat branch 
of the Euphrates, and stretching to the east to the coun- 
try of the Chalda;o-Babylonian mounds of Zibllyah, Seleini, 
and Jayithah. 

Various origin of Alluvia. — In traversing great tracts 
of alluvial country, where everything presents almost 
the same aspect, — uniformity of level, continuity of plain, 
similarity of vegetation, and identity of living forms, — 
the eye fatigues itself with seeking for distinctions and dif- 
ferences which are scarcely supposed to exist, because they 


are not apparent by contrasted confignration, — a varied 
outline, the succession of kills and Tallerss or the relief of 
the most gentle undulation are not to be obsenred ; and 
a rigid perseverance alone discoTers, that among these 
tracts of' so much similaritv of character, there i& in 
reality, often the greatest difference in nature and origin. 

Plains of Chaldiea. — ^There is veiy little indication of 
change on quitting the Lemlum, — a gradual elcTation of 
the soil, so gentle as to be scarcely perceptible, but 
affording a territory which is the seat of cultiration, 
during the dry months, — leads to plains of wide extent, 
which dominate by only a few feet over the marshes ; and 
which are by position and history, and in the *'*' ruinous 
perfection" of their monumental remains, identified with 
the territory of Chaldsea. 

Geological Features of the Soil. — ^A closer inspection 
of the territory of Chaldaea shows that at the northern 
end, or immediately beyond the marshes, the soil presents 
many peculiarities ; it is a strong tenacious clay, of a 
deep-blue colour, argillo-calcareous, and very uniform in 
its characters ; it further abounds with shells, and these 
belong to a very few genera, which are almost entirely 

Organic Remains. — ^These mollusks belonged cliiefly to 
the Trochoidal and Buccinoidal tribes of the Pectini- 
branch and aquatic-lunged Gasteropods ; also to the trilies 
of Mytilaceae and Cardiacese among the Testaceous 

The most abundant shells in the lower argillaceous 


beds were a well-defined species of Venus, and a Cyrena, 
associated with certain turretted univalves, and a Mytel- 
lacea with a fine pearly lustre internally, and apparently 
closely allied to the sub-genus Mytiloidea of M. Bron- 
gniart (Cuv. " Oss. Foss.," t. ii. p. iii. f. 4.) (Cuv. " R^gne 
Animal," t. 3, p. 1 86.) 

The upper and more sandy beds were characterized 
by the Trochoidal and Buccinoidal forms of turretted 
univalves, apparently a littoral formation, and the species 
bore a perfect identity to what are met with in the pre- 
sent day on the shores of the Persian Gulf. The shells 
of this formation, which it is to be regretted have not 
reached home, were collected in part at the head of the 
Chaldsean territory near Gerah, and in part at El Kadder 
in the parallel of Irak. 

Eminences of Drift Sand. — The sandy deposits belong- 
ing to the Chaldajan marine formation rise in the neigh- 
bourhood of Gerah, at Abu el Fir, O'mu el Mushab^t, 
and at the castle of Bashi Agha, only lately destroyed by 
Sheik Adjil, (brother to Isa, chief of the Muntefik 
Arabs,) and lastly at Grayim Inlet, in gentle undulations 
which may be mistaken in these level plains for Assyrian 
mounds or heaps resulting from accumulated ruins. They 
are, however, distinguished from these, by the total 
absence of bricks or pottery, which are uniformly met 
with in the neighbourhood of Chaldsean or Babylonian 
cities or monuments. 

Geographical Botany. — ^The vegetation of these tracts 
is characterized by the usual saline plants, the river banks 
being fringed by shrubberies of Tamarisk and Acacia, and 


occasional groves of a poplar (Gharab), with lanceolate and 
cordate leaves on separate parts of the same branch, and 
which has hence been mistaken for a willow. The weeping 
willow {Salia? Bahyhnica) is not met with in Babylonia. 
The common tamarisk of the country, the Athleh or A tie 
of Sonnini, is the Tamarix Orientalis of Forskahl (" Flora 
Egyptiaca-Arabica," p. 206.) The solitary tree " of 
a species altogether strange to this country" (Heeren, 
*' Asiatic Nations," vol. ii., p. 158,) and which Rich calls 
Lignum Vitse, found growing upon the ruins of the Kasr 
at Babylon, and which has been supposed to be a last 
remnant or offspring of the sloping or hanging gardens, that 
appeared to Quintus Curtius like a forest ; is also a tama- 
risk, but it diflFers from the athleh in its size, being a tree, 
in having scaly branches and long slender petioles, which 
are less burdened with leaves, both of which may have 
been produced by a scanty supply of water and great age. 
A tamarisk exactly resembling the Babylonian tree is, 
however, frequently observed overshadowing the wells of 
Farsistan, and is common in the country of the queen, for 
whose solace the Hanging Gardens are said to have been 

Assyrian Mounds. — No monuments in Babylonia and 
Chaldsea appear to be more valid regarding the antiquity 
and Assyrian origin of sites, than the lofty artificial 
mounds, of which the present degenerate hordes of the 
tent and the spear narrate so many fabulous tales ; but 
which almost everywhere present themselves where there 
are also other strong grounds of presumption of an 
Assyrian or Chaldseo-Babylonian origin. Thus at Irkah 
or Irak, at Wasit, Tel 'Siphr, Seleini, Jayithah, Zibliyah, 


and Secheriyah in Chaldaja ; at Teredon, and at Urchoe 
on the Pallacopas ; at the Birs Nimrud, the Mujallbah El 
Heunar, and Shi Shubar in Babylonia ; and at Aker Kuf in 
Sitacene; these colossal piles are found domineering over 
the dreary waste, to the uniformity of which they oflFer a 
striking contrast ; being visible at great distances, and 
although thrown by the shrdb or mirage into strange and 
contorted shapes, yet they always appear, when seen upon 
the verge of the horizon, as if possessing colossal dimen- 
sions, and produce an effect, in point of grandeur and 
magnificence, which cannot be imagined in any other 

The absence of these mounds is an equally strong 
objection to the determination of sites as Assyrian or 
Chaldaeo-Babylonian, more particularly where the other 
sources of identification do not rest upon grounds of an 
unexceptionable character. Such, for example, are the 
scholastic dreams of St. Jerome, and the positioning, by 
Abu el Faraj, of Erech, Accad, and Chalne, at Urfah, 
Nisibln, and Mardin. Upon less data than that of the 
relation of the Sinjar of the Romans, and the Shinar of 
Scriptures, noticed but not advocated by the sagacious 
Niebuhr, and corrected by D'Auville ("Comp. Anc. 
G^og.," p. 433,) Mr. Beke (" Origines Biblica)," p. m,) 
has identified the land of Shinai* with the Kharput 
Dawassi, misled by a bad interpretation, and unaided by a 
single monumental or traditionary evidence. 

Chaldcean Mounds, — High and extensive mounds, mo- 
numents of a laborious and an aspiring people of former 
times, present themselves on the eastern and western 
banks of Euphrates on various parts of the great plain of 


Chaldfisa. About 80 miles from the head of the plain a 
deep channel of artificial construction, called by the 
natives Gray i no, takes its departure from the river Eu*. 
phrates, bearing its waters to several distinct mounds, 
amidst which one towers in superior magnitude and height. 
The site itself preserves the name of Irkah, Senkerah, 
and Irak, and is also called A say i yah ^Hhe place of 

The gigantic mound designated as the Mogeiyer, or 
place built of bitumen, rises upwards of 200 feet above 
the level plain which bounds the horizon to the west of 
the Euphrates, accompanied by other mounds of less 
dimensions, and less precipitous acclivities, but over which 
are everywhere strewed the remains of bricks cemented 
by bitumen, and of antique pottery and constructions. 
The appearance of the Mogeiyer surpasses in boldness the 
ruins of Birs Nimrud. It is situated a little north of the 
parallel of Kut, the residence of the Sheik of the Mun- 
tif ik Arabs, and in the plain about 12 miles west of the 
river Euphrates upon the ancient bed of the Pallacopas. 

The other larger mounds of Chaldea are Tell 'Siphr, 
Atlah, Tell Medineh, Jerra Suplf, Ithahr, Mizisithah, 
Jayithah, Abu Ghurut, Waslt, and a great number of 
others of less importance. 

Hyd/rography of ChoMcea. — ^The rivers and canals of 
Chaldaea, which contain water in the present day, are the 
Shat Bazul, close by the old bed of the Hatiil, the nume- 
rous canals of irrigation near Gerab, designated as the 
Mejilah, the Jemilah, the Antar, the Jamfdah, and others; 
a similar system opposite to Samowat, including the 
Bushinaker, the Dub, and the Bunder, and the extended 


line of the Shatrah canal, having numerous offsets to 
Euphrates, and uniting with the Shat el Hie, near its 

Shdt el Hie. — ^The river of Hie, which traverses the 
plain of Chaldaea from Tigris to Euphrates, takes its de- 
parture from the former river at Kut Aamarah, at a 
distance of 241 miles from Kurnah. It courses at first 
through extensive marshes to Kut Hie, beyond which 
are the mounds or Nushayet Wasit; at this point 
the river divides itself into two branches, the most 
northerly of which, the Bu Ji Heirat, follows a circuitous 
course by the old fort of Tesaini to Teli Tendhiyah, 
where it unites with the other branch, which, from not 
being navigable, is designated as the Shat ul Amah, or 
the Wanderer, flowing past the modern Wasit or Wasit 
el Hie. The united streams form the Sub Bil, which, 
after sending off the canal of Bu Dukau, and another 
to Shatrah, divides at the tombs of Hamzah into two 
branches, the most northerly of which is called Argaf, and 
is the only one navigable, having its outlet into Euphrates, 
14 miles north of Kut, and upwards of 90 miles by Eu- 
phrates from Kurnah. 

Inundations of Suk el Sliuynklu — While the dry land 
on the banks of the Euphrates stretches beyond the Shat 
el Hie, protected by the date plantations, the rampart- 
enclosed reed liuts, and the more stable habitations of the 
Muntifik Arabs, from Kut by Suk el Shuyukh to Omu 
el Bak, the " Mother of Musquitoes." The inland coun- 
try to the east, and to the west in the parallel of the 
" Sheik's Market-town," becomes already occupied by an 


almost perpetual inundatioiiy and at Omu el Bak, the 
waters spread from the banks of the river in every di- 
rection, like a great lake ; extending to the extreme verge 
of the horizon, and only here and there interrupted by 
groves of date-trees^ and occasional huts islanded in the 
desert of waters. On the ascent of Her Majesty's 
steamer " Euphrates " in the latter end of October, and 
the descent of the same vessel in the beginning of No- 
vember, 1836, the extent of this great inundation had 
undergone very little diminution from what it had been 
in the month of June, nearly at the period of the great 

Reed Marshes ofChaldcpa. — ^To the south of these great 
inundations, and to the point of union of Tigris and 
Euphrates ; the land is occupied by perpetual waters, and 
hence covered with an aquatic vegetation, which derives 
its chief, if not its sole, characters, from a species of 
agrostis ; which, like the canebrake (arundinaria) of North 
America, has the port and aspect of the true reed {arundo) 
of the North of Europe. These tracts present hence, in 
every direction, great uniformity of feature ; a boundless 
growth of plants of the same aspect ; only here and there, 
interrupted by lakes and ponds, or intersected by artificial 

Hydrographical Features. — ^The waters of these reed 
marshes are derived chiefly from the river Tigris, towards 
the banks of which is some higher land, although still 
marshy, and which contains the rice-grounds of the Mun- 
tifik Arabs, and also those of Kumah. The Brashiyah, 
the Yuwar, and the Bu Bariyah system, consisting of three 



canals flowing into a common channel, may be considered 
as the most northerly of these. Tlie remainder are below 
the point to which spring-tides extend in Tigris, and 
comprise the Akushl, the Dervishes' canal, the Shirah, 
the Dakower, the Demahah, the Buchal, and a great 
many more less important. 

These marshes empty themselves by almost as many 
outlets as there are inlets ; among these few have names ; 
and between the Shat Hamam and Kumah, are 15 
different channels which pour their waters into Eu- 

The Jesayir of the Beni Lam Arabs. The Samdrgah 
and Samidah, — ^There are two other marshes, of a little 
less extent, but of importance in considering the ancient 
geography and the progress of the alluvia in these terri- 
tories, which remain to be described. The first are on 
the left or eastern bank of Tigris, and occupy all that 
country which extends from the Kerah, or Hawisah river, 
northwards to the Shat el Hud. This district is called 
the Jesayir, or islands (plural of Jezirah), by its inhabit- 
ants, who belong to the Arab tribe of Beni Lam. The 
waters are derived in part from Tigris by the canals called 
Shat el Hud, Nahrawan, and Deraheim, but in much 
greater proportion from two derivatives of the Kerah, 
the Nahr Josem, which flows from above Hawisah, and 
the Bu Jamus, three miles below that town ; both flow 
into the marshy ground extending between them and the 
Shat el Htid, the Nahrawan, and the Deraheim. These 
marshes are called Samargah ; part of the waters flow, 
however, to the southward, and cover the land, which 
advances as a promontory between Tigris and Kerah. 


The latter mardhes are called Samldali, and have^ as out- 
lets, the Jehayit, the Hamyan^ and other canals. 

Ab(i-el-Fidah mentions thatj when the dams of the Bfi 
Jamfis and of the Nahr Josem break down, the Kerfih is 
left almost dry. All these marshes are traversed, and 
even navigated, by boats through channels of various 
dimensions. As terms in physical geography are most 
abundant in countries characterized by peculiarities in 
contrasted configurations ; so the Arabs are as rich in 
names for their picturesque marshes, as the Norwegian is 
for his variously- formed mountains. Thus, a river flowing 
in a narrow channel through reeds is called Jahiyah, 
while one which spreads out, and has islands or clumps 
of reeds in the bed, is called Buijhfih or Buij. 

Heed Marshes of the Nahr Saleh. The Jesayir of the 
MUntifik -4rai*.— This is the next marshy tract, and 
occupies the right or southern bank of the river Euphrates, 
from below Omti el B£k to near Basrah, and extends 
from that river to the ancient Pallacopas. The marshes 
are fed by a number of canals and derivatives (mostly 
artificial) from Euphrates, few of which are distinguished 
by names; among them, however, are the celebrated 
Nahr Saleh, the Nahr Antfo, the Nahr Sautah, and 
Nahr Sebiyah. 

District between the Hawisah and the Kar&n. — ^The dis- 
tricts, which we are now led to, are such as extend to 
the south from the point of junction of Euphrates and 
Tigris to the embouchure of the united rivers, or the 
Shat el Arab, into the Persian Gulf. The tract of land 
which is comprised between the Sufib or Hawisah branch 

I 2 


of the Kerah, and which occupies the left or eastern bank 
of the river, as far as to the Mo'ammerah mouth of the 
Karun, is characterized by a fringe of date-trees on the 
river side, a band of reed and rush marshes, some pastur- 
age, and still less cultivation ; and beyond, a level and 
uniform plain, sprinkled with occasional tamarisk, Ononis, 
Acacia, and saline plants ; but, for the most part, bare 
and naked ; and inundated during nearly one half of the 

The whole line of this district is traversed near to and 
parallel with Euphrates by the large and deep canal 
called Zeragiyah, which is derived from the Suab giving 
off a number of small canals to Euphrates in its course, 
and mingling its waters above Basrah with the Shat 
Shitiyaban and the Nahr Hassain. 

Territories dependant upon Basrah. — ^The territories 
upon the Shat el Arab, to the north and south of the 
city of Basrah, are designated, according to their geogra- 
phical position in relation to that commercial mart, the 
Shemai and the Junub. 

The Shemdly or North. — ^The Shemai, like the opposite 
bank of Euphrates, is also, for the most part, fringed on 
the river side with date-trees. This district is pierced by 
many canals, among which are the Nahr Omar and Deir ; 
it also contains some villages, as Bobat Dan and Shireh; 
also the ruins of De'ir, celebrated for its tower of colossal 
dimensions, now fallen, and of Ableh, of still greater an- 
tiquity. The band of vegetation is very narrow in this 
district, often confined by ranges of sand hills to a few 
hundred yards ; beyond this verdant band, an inundation 


of from six to eight months veils the earth from sight, 
which, during the remainder of the year, is a level plain, 
without a moss or lichen to feed the piping sand-grouse 

According to Abu-el-Fidah the canal of Maagal, in the 
district of Shemal, joins the Nahr el Aballah (Obolah), 
which is 11 miles below it, at Nimiah, near Basrah. 

The Junuby or South. — ^The district of the Junub, or 
south, presents similar characters, for the most part a 
fringe of date-trees, and inundation at one season, and a 
naked plain at the other. This district has many villages 
and canals dispersed along the date groves, or on the 
river banks. The canal of Ashar flows past the fort of 
Nimiah to the city of Basrah, and twice a day, with the 
flowing tide, waters the gardens of that unhealthy spot. 
The canal of Nimiah contains the ruins of Turkish ships 
of war. Sarraji is a mere creek. There are many vil- 
lages scattered along the date groves, or on the river 
banks between Basrah and the sea. 

The Dauasivy or " Wate^* Conntry^^ — ^The extensive 
level tracts from the Junub to the confluence of the river 
and the sea are, the Jezirat Khader of Thevenot, the 
Dauasir, or Water Country, of Niebuhr, and the Choa- 
bedeh of Sir W. Jones. It is interiorly the same barren 
and desert country of mud* and sands, bounded by the 
pebbly deposits of the Pallacopas, and inundated during 
nine months of the year. The banks of the river are 
lined with woods of the gracefrd date, and at times afford 
a rich pasturage for buf&loes. Villages are numerous, 
but the population rather scanty. 


Geographical Botany. — The extreme limits of the 
alluvial soil, the points where land is first gained from 
water, at the mouth of the Shat el Arab, and on the 
littoral expansions alike of the Ka'ban and the Dauasir, 
the soil is clothed with an uniform vegetation. A solitary 
plant, uniformly propagated over these great tracts, acts 
as umpire between the liquid and the solid world, and 
first reclaims new territories to the latter. It is a species 
of Mariscus, approaching very closely to the M. elatus of 
the East Indies, of which it is perhaps but a variety, but 
differing from it in the marked elongation of the spikelets. 
It may be designated as follows : 

Genus Mariscus. Species elongatus. Umbel compound ; 
spike cylindrical; spikelets elongated, numerous, spreading; 
bractes longer than the spikelets ; from nine to eighteen 
rows of flowers in each spikelet. 

The sheath at the base of the leaves is shut up, 
and the average length of the culm or stem is about 
two feet. It flowers in May at a mean temperature 
of 84°, but under great atmospherical vicissitudes, and 
a range sometimes of 24° between the temperature of 
night and that of day. It presents a rich green carpet 
and a fine verdure, in the flowering season, relieved 
by the glistening aspect of the spikelets, which are never- 
theless sombre in their colour, like the other species of 
the same family. 

The roots of this plant are fibrous, and take a firm 
hold of the soil ; by this means, in their propagation, they 
give solidity to whole masses of alluvium, and thus assist 
in repelling the invasion of the waters at spring-tides, 
during storms, and in periods of inundation ; there is no 
combat here, as when the Arundo arenarla or the Carex 


of similar specific name, are endeavouring to climb above 
the perpetually-accumulating sands ; where the Mariscus 
has once spread itself, the land may be said to be almost 
irrecoverably gained. The importance of this plant in 
physical geography will be thus at once felt in all its 


Daie-i/ree Ctdtivation. — ^These tracts of mariscus, which, 
named after their vegetation, Humboldt would call 
Cyperitae; are interrupted on the west banks of Euphrates, 
at the village of Fueh, about 15 miles from the em- 
bouchure of the river, by plantations of young date-trees 
and the foundations of the latest village that has ap- 
proached the sea. A short distance more to the north, 
and on the east side, the inhabitants of Mashannak or 
Bukshir are also engaged in a similar manner in reclaim- 
ing the new grounds to cultivation, or at least to arbori- 
culture ; for the plantation and growth of the date-tree, 
can scarcely be looked upon in the same light as tilling 
the ground — corresponding with the character of the 
country over which its stately form first dominates — it 
partakes of the primitive simplicity of the earliest condi- 
tions of man, as a social being. 

Ichthyology. — ^The mud-banks on the Shat el Arab, 
which are left bare by the ebbing tide, and are immedi- 
ately below the Cyperacese ; are the abode of a species of 
Gobius, which by burrowing the ground, prepare it for 
the reception of plants ; and thus ever perform their part 
in the ultimately great effects which are produced by an 
allwise Providence, from apparently small causes. This 
species, like other Acanthopterygoid fish to which the 


labyrinthiform gills give the property of living out of the 
water, delight in basking in the most powerful sun of 
summer, lying in myriads upon the banks, and moving 
with great agility on the approach of birds. The prin- 
cipal powers of locomotion, are derived from a pecu- 
liarity in the arrangement of the operculum, by which 
three of its portions are united to form an osseous plate 
superadded to the thoracic fin ; and from the reunion of 
the same fin into a hollow disk, it thus becomes a gas- 
teropod organ, or a foot placed beneath the stomach. 

Marine Shells. — ^To the north of Fueh is an extensive 
plain inundated like the rest of the Dauasir during a great 
portion of the year, and composed of soil almost entirely 
of marine origin, and furnishing abundant recent marine 
shells. The vegetation on this tract consists of saline and 
crassulated plants. Cyperaceae also become more abun- 
dant in species, but Mariscus elongatus still predominates. 
In the date forests, the Glycyrrhiza glabra, forms the 
most frequent vegetation. 

Physical Characters of the Kdhdn and Dorakstdn. — 
The tract of alluvium contained between the Karun and 
the Jerahyi and that river and the sea, extending to the 
Bahamshir, is called in its northern part Ka'ban, and in 
its southern Dorakstan, or Dorghestan, — the Margastana 
of Arrian. The whole district is a nearly uniform plain, 
for the most part inundated during one-half of the year; 
for the rest ; brown, even, desert and dead, vrithout a moss 
or blade of grass to enliven its uniformity, and scarcely 
a living thing excepting now and then a stray herd of 
gazelles, or a skulking hysena, to be seen. Some parts 


of the plain are, however, covered with a scanty vegetation 
of dispersed Salsola and Salicomia, with some Ononis ; but 
where the inundation extends to nearly nine months in 
the year, and along the coast in every direction ; the sur- 
fauce is covered with a continuous growth of Cyperacese 
(Mariscus elongates a Luzvla and Cyperus crniglrnneratm^ 
and lastly, where the inundation continues throughout the 
year, or where the rivers or canals lose themselves in the 
plains constituting perpetual marshes, there is a deep 
growth of reeds, rushes, sedge grasses, and gramineae, 
amidst which the buffalo herd, delights to wander. In the 
Dorghestan, and at the mouth of the Bahamshir, there is 
a greater variety of soil and aspect, more particularly 
derived from the great plains of salt, which in some places 
cover the soil like a field of snow. Sometimes the earth 
is a compact argillo-calcareous cement, with a few plants 
of Salsoloe ; in other places the soil is divided into irre- 
gular polyhedral and imperfect circular figures, and then 
again broken into a loose soil, full of saline particles. 

In the plains of salt, the incrustation lies from a depth 
of one-fourth of an inch to an inch ; in the interior the 
incrustation is quite continuous and unbroken, but on the 
verge of the plain there are bubbles of thin soil elevated 
by the evolution of gaseous matters which sometimes 
break through the saline crust. 

Burning the Vegetation. — It is a common practice, dur- 
ing the few months that the districts of Cyperaceae are dry, 
to fire the desiccated and earth-brown vegetation ; when, if 
there is the slightest breeze, the flames spread with fearful 
rapidity. On these occasions, numerous birds of prey, 
kites, vultures, and large gray crows, are seen hovering in 


the air, and sweeping through the dense piles of smoke 
which curl above the region of devastation like clouds ; in 
the train of which they are ever and anon seen to alight, 
where an abundant destruction of animal life, attends the 
progress of the fire. Small quadrupeds, such as the 
jerboa and shrew-mice, hurried out of their holes, fall 
victims to the kites and falcons ; while an abundant 
harvest of half-broiled snakes and lizards, await the vul- 
tures and the crows. 

Catises of Infertility. — ^Although there is no vegetation 
upon those tracts which are only inundated during six or 
seven months of the year, or upon others that are covered 
with water during a longer period, as between Basrah and 
Zobei'r ; or even where the period of time is less, as be- 
tween Moham'rah and Hawlsah ; this appears to be more 
connected with the chemical nature of the soil, than with 
the climate. When irrigated, the same soil at Dorak, 
produces abundant crops of rice ; and what is now barren 
plain at Hawaz, was formerly the seat of large sugar- 
cane plantations ; the cultivation of which extends from 
35** to 40° on each side of the equator. A proof that the 
desert (a term which I use as expressive of deserted^ and 
not as incapable of productiveness,) character of the soil, is 
connected, most probably, with its saline nature, as well 
as with a want of irrigation ; is the abundant vegetation of 
those spots in the alluvial districts, which are overflowed 
by fresh-water tributaries. In the same way we observe 
the bed of the ancient Karun, composed of a band of 
fluviatile soil about 200 yards in width, is covered with 
the Cynodon linearis and other grasses ; while beyond the 
bed are a few tamarisk shrubs overrun with termites, and 


then some saline plants, succeeded by a lifeless plain. 
The ancient bed of the Shawur, presents also a paucity 
of graminous plants, which appear like the agreeable ver- 
dure of a greensward when compared with the plains 

Modes of Deposition of AUuvia. -^T)iq difficulties 
which present themselves to too extensive generalities 
upon the graduated depositions of alluvia are often of 
an almost insuperable character. In the Shat el Arab it 
is a very common thing to observe the river actively at 
work carrying away ancient alluvia from some change in 
its course, of which the causes are sometimes difficultly 
appreciable ; but which are generally connected with the 
balance which is always throwing itself in the scale, be- 
tween the general and the detailed course of a river. 
The geographical direction of its bed, influencing its 
return from old sinuosities when carried too far in one 
direction, causes a constant change of action from the 
salient angles of one side to that of the other, yet always 
terminating in favour of one more than another, from 
causes that are connected with the configuration of the 
land, as in the gentle slope upwards towards a mountain- 
chain in the Tigris, or with geological changes, as in 
the Shat el Arab, where the alluvia brought down by the 
Kerah and the Karun are perpetually assisting in throw- 
ing th^ bed of the river to the westward. 

But in the river Tigris these changes are to be seen 
in full operation upon alluvia of the most recent origin, 
frequently of the last flooded season, cutting them down 
in sandy cliffs, which having little tenacity, are perpetually 
giving way, and hurried down to other places ; while the 

i 140 


river itself repelled by the mountains which it approached 
too closely on leaving the walls of Seleucia, (where it has 
twice changed its course, now wooing Ctesiphon, now the 
city of the Greeks ;) its constant tendency remains the 
same of flowing to the westward. 

How insignificant are the calculations which can be 
made on the quantity of adventitious matter suspended in a 
river, to effect changes so numerous and so frequent ; and 
how little dependance can be placed in results that are 
derived from these, when the phenomena of deposition 
become so complicated in different parts of the river, and 
throughout different seasons of the year ; if we did not 
judge by the general rather than by the particular or 
merely local effects produced. 

Variom circumstances of Origin of Alluvia. — It is 
obvious that, in order to form even au approximative 
opinion upon the amount of time which the alluvial for- 
mations of Babylonia, Chaldoea, and Susiana, have occu- 
pied in their deposition ; all the various circumstances of 
their origin, must be taken into account. 

The first and most important of which, is to obtain as 
many data, historically established, as possible ; such as the 
changes which have occurred subsequently to the erection 
of towns, castles, or buildings ; the digging of canals ; 
the march of conquerors; and the solitary path of tra- 

The second are the geological features of the soil 
which enters into the composition of so vast a basin, and 
which must cause a great difference in the changes which 
are locally undergone by the bed of the river, and the 
quantity of detritus which is carried away from one place 


only to be deposited in another, or borne onwards towards 
the delta of the united rivers which form that basin. 

Thirdly, the physical character of the soil, the con- 
trasted configuration, or superficial structure of the land, 
and the extent of vegetation which influences so much in 
retarding both the disintegration of rocks, the action of 
running waters, and the modifications efiected by art. 

Fourthly, the quantity of mud discharged by the same 
river in various parts of their course, and at different 
seasons of the year. 

Fifthly, the nature of the waters which receive these 

alluvial deposits. The rise and fall of the tide at the 

head of the Persian Gulf, is as much as nine or ten feet 

in spring-tides. There is, besides, a constant current 

which sets across the head of the gulf from east to west ; 

the accumulations at the mouth of the rivers hence meet 

with a check, and a portion of the alluvium is carried to 

the westward and southward, and dispersed over the 

bottom of the Gulf; that such is actually the case, is 

shown by the chart of the Gulf lately constructed by the 

officers employed in the survey by the Honourable the 

East India Company, from which it appears that whilst 

along the north-eastern or Persian side of the Gulf, the 

depth, in great part, exceeds 40 fathoms, along the 

whole of the Arabian or north-western side, it varies from 

16 fathoms to shallows which are unnavigable, and 

which, to all appearances, will soon rise altogether above 

the level of the sea. 

General Eqtiality of Levd in the AUnvial Districts. — 
It is not, as Mr. Carter (" Phil. Mag.," vol. vii.. No. xxxix., 
p. 199,) advances, because that part of the basin of the 


Euphrates which lies below Felujah, comprising the Ba- 
bylonian and Chaldeean alluvia, is geologically modern, 
and was a part of the desert, that that district preserves a 
nearly uniform level. Sandy deserts have, according to 
this gentleman, been all once covered by the ocean; 
but although the sea has left abundant evidence by the 
organic remains which it has left behind it, of its waters 
having dwelt, far higher up the river, than Feldjah, still, 
in the acceptation which Mr. C. gives to sandy deserts, 
there are none such neighbouring the Euphrates, except 
perhaps at the ancient mouth of the Pallacopas ; but in 
the Babylonian and Chaldaean alluvial districts, there are 
no actual sand deposits, nor are there in Arabia, upon the 
Euphrates, or in Mesopotamia; any other sandy deserts 
but what result from the decomposition of rocks contain- 
ing silica or other substances, capable, under the circum- 
stances in which they are found, of a hot sun, and the 
absence of moisture and of vegetation, of a minute 
division of their particles. 

The surface of the desert tracts of Arabia and of 
Mesopotamia, which are not alluvial, is very far from 
being level ; but from the absence of any considerable hills 
or mountains; in many parts, the minor irregularities 
become overlooked ; the undulating and unequal rocky 
ground is described, as it appears, in a comprehensive 
and undetailed survey, as a vast continuous plain ; and the 
awakened imagination pictures a sea of sand, as level as 
a lawn or terrace. 

But supposing these irregularities continued over the 
basis of the districts of the alluvial deposits, to have been, 
in reality, but inconsiderable, as they appear to have been ; 
the degree of level which will be attained by a formation 


slowly deposited as a sediment in waters covering those 
irregularities, v^iU be exsctiy m the quantity and depth 
of that deposit exceeds the height of those irregularities. 
Before a basin can be brought to a level with its rim, it 
must be filled with alluvium, which will naturally be de- 
posited in the cavity before it will gain upon the heights. 
Under these circumstances, all the concavities would go 
on filling till they reached the level of the banks, when 
the same operation continuing, mud would be deposited 
on the latter, and a level plain thus formed; and it 
appears that this has been so much the case, with regard 
to the formations which now occupy the ancient prolonga- 
tion of the Persian Gulf; that a remarkable level has been 
the result ; one produced, however, from the circumstance 
of the deposition of the alluvium in oceanic waters, rather 
than from those waters occupying the surface of a desert. 
At the same time, the level has been modified in two 

1st. By the existence of hills or mounds, being deposits 
of transported detritus, to the level of which, the alluvia 
did not rise as at Khan Iskenderia. 

2dly. By the formation of inland cavities, produced by 
the accumulation in lines, of alluvia deposited in a tidal 
sea ; and the consequent formation of lagunee, of lakes, 
then marshes, and last of all, of concavities, which are 
only the abode of waters at the time of the annual 

Difference of Level between Euphrates and Tigris. — 
From the circumstances of this contrasted configuration 
of the soil, along the fringe of the pre-existing formations, 
and the post-Babylonian alluvium ; the undulating figure 


of the surface of diluvial gravels refined into diluvial 
mud, and shaded off by centuries of alluvia, deposited 
before the period when man began, with waste and pigmy 
efforts, to erect the feeble semblance of mountains, on the 
plain ; a various level of alluvium had been established in 
the interfluviatile space; by which, in one part, the waters 
of the Euphrates find a higher level than the Tigris, into 
which they flow at the high season; while at another 
place, the Tigris sends its waters to the Euphrates, 
and restores the flood by which it had been previously 
enriched, from the " Great River." 

It is necessary, to understand the circumstances under 
which such hydrographical phenomena could take place ; 
to remark, in the first place, that the longer course, the 
more abundant waters, and the geognostic nature of the 
soil through which the Euphrates flows, cause it to be 
loaded with a predominance of alluvium over its territo- 
rial sister, the Tigris. 

Further, although the tributaries to the Euphrates 
from the Arabian Desert are few and insignificant, the 
hydrographical domination of that river over that coun- 
try is extensive, and supposing, on the retiring of the 
waters of the Deluge, the configuration to have been 
pretty nearly what it is now, the quantity of space from 
which the retreating flood would have made its exit by 
the valley of the Euphrates extending from the Anti- 
Lebanon to the Sinjar, is altogether disproportionate to 
anything that is presented by the territorial relations of 
the Tigris, confined by the high lands of Mesopotamia on 
one side, and the long chain of Kurdistan on the other. 

Further, the southerly extension of the supi*a-creta- 
ceous rock-formations which occupy the districts of 


Arabia and of Mesopotamia to the north of the allu- 
via, is greater upon the Euphrates than the Tigris ; and 
the detritus of the latter, or the transported matters of 
the Scriptural Flood, have had a greater inlet to fill, than 
those of the Euphrates ; and hence accumulating at the 
embouchure of the rivers beyond the hilly country, they 
have given a superiority of elevation to the bed of the 
Euphrates, at the line of the commencement of the diluvial 
deposits; which, from an accurate levelling by theodo- 
lite, performed by Corporal Greenhill of the Engineers, 
(a careful observer, and practised in the use of that instru- 
ment,) amounts to about five feet. 

The action of a tidal sea would cause the accumulation 
of silt in a bar, which at the period of the first gain of land 
in the ante-Babylonian era, and in the interfluviatile terri- 
tories above the site of Babel, would be in advance of the 
then embouchure of the rivers ; as is the case with the 
actual bar of the present day ; and would have given origin 
to the high land and sandy downs, in that country, to 
which the Chaldaeans more particularly repaired, on the 
downfall of the Chaldseo-Babylonian dynasty ; while the 
same bar leaving behind it a depression of greater or less 
extent, the saline waters would, with the further accumu- 
lation of land, and the progress of evaporation, become 
brackish and then fresh ; although, owing to the peculiar 
circumstances in which that depression remained in regard 
to the river Euphrates, never dry ; and hence, what in the 
earliest historical times, constituted the Paludes Babyloniae, 
exist in the present day as the marshes of Lemlum. 

But Tigris, repelled by the approach of the supra- 
cretaceous formations of the hills of Ham^run, began, 
by the operation of the same causes, to throw her 



alluvia upon her left bank, while the river itself had a 
constant tendency to the right, leading ultimately to the 
union of the rivers below the territory of Chaldsea ; which 
junction, in ancient times, took place in the valley now 
occupied by the Shat el Hie, although not in the same 
bed, and along which valley, the waters still flow from 
the Tigris into the Euphrates. 

It is probable that the united rivers emptied them- 
selves into the Gulf at this period by several distinct 
mouths, of which the first or greatest was at Teredon, 
the Ostium Tigris Occidentale of Ptolemy, and the mouth 
of the Euphrates, according to Nearchus ; the second was 
the Pasitigris of Pliny, probably the Shat-el-Arab, and the 
Ostium Tigris Orientale of the Alexandrian geographer. 

The bar which was now given origin to, in the progress 
of the alluvia, included the territory of Old Basrah, or 
Zobeir ; of Apamea, or Kumah ; and of Su^b, or Ampe ; 
and the Chaldaean lake which took its origin at the same 
period, is, in the present day, represented by the reed- 
marshes of Suk-el-Shuyukh, by the Jesayir of the Mtinti- 
fik, and the Samarkah and Samidah of the Beni Lam, 

The time was now arrived when the alluvia of Eu* 
phrates and Tigris became united with those of the 
Kerah and the Karun, and new and more complicated 
relations were established ; in which, however, we always 
observe, whether studied in detail or on a larger scale ; the 
same causes in action, and similar efiects produced. 
These periods approach, however, more intimately within 
historical times, and their discussion will, therefore, be 
better deferred till forced upon us by the progress of the 


It is the absence of all philosophical inquiry into the 
condition of the two great rivers of the Eastern world, 
that has so long caused clouds to hang around a subject 
equally interesting in a scientific and an historical point 
of view, and bound to us, indeed, by ties and associations 
of an almost sacred character. Throughout the writings 
of ancient as well as of modem geographers, there is an 
obscurity which nothing could tend so far to remove as 
actual survey, but that only when combined with the 
application to ordinary observation, of those means which 
the progfesA of knowledge, and the ordei^ ftiid method of 
science, llfttn plttced at our disposal. 

K 2 


The Aliuvia of Ohald^a and Babylonia. 

Part II. 

Nature of History. — All history is traditionary, docu- 
mentary, or monumental. The most ancient historical 
evidences of the antique geography of the plaina of Baby- 
lonia, Chaldeea, and Susiana, are almost solely monumen- 
tal. At the same time, the earliest pages of written 
history have preserved some records of those who stood 
among the first dominant nations of the earth. Tradition 
alone has not preserved a home in countries swept by 
successive conquerors, aliens to the land ; and which, from 
the days of the Dispersion to the rise of the Khalifat, 
have been the seat of a changing religion, and an ever- 
varying language 


Lingual or Oral Monuments. — Under the head of 
monumental records, are included not only all fabrications 
and works of art, but also the preservation of antique 
names or denominations, which are not only traditions, but 
also the lingual or oral monuments of a country, handed 
down almost without a people's volition ; and by the mere 
force of pristine integrity, and general acceptation. It is 
evident, that the degree of credit which is to be given to 
evidences of this description, must be regulated by cir- 
cumstances ; but to neglect them altogether, as Mr. Beke 
has done in the " Origines Biblicae," is to close our eyes 
to what constitute remarkable and valuable resources in 
the primeval history of mankind. 

Nature of present Inquiry. — It is evident, that, in a dis- 
cussion which has solely in contemplation the comparison 
of the ancient with the present condition of the alluvial 
districts of Babylonia, Chaldsea, and Susiana; that it is quite 
unnecessary to enter into the detail of the vast mass of 
material which is furnished to us by the Scriptural records, 
as well as by profane history, upon the geography of these 
countries ; but rather to confine ourselves to those details 
which aifect immediately the object in question; and which, 
while they illustrate the subject of discussion, being appli- 
cable to these countries alone, and meeting in them with 
their only explanation ; must, at the same time, bear with a 
twofold power of evidence, upon the more remote question 
of the chorography of the land of the first nations of men ; 
and thus the space and the time, is saved, which it would 
be necessary to spend in the examination of those few 
first questions ; to throw doubts upon which, in the pre- 
sent day, and that upon grounds of a mere hypotbetici4 


nature, is to impede, in the most direct manner possible, 
the progress of human knowledge. 

Difference in the Chronology of Geology^ and that of 
Historical Events. — The monuments of these altered con- 
ditions in the geography of the same countries, is strictly 
contained in the configuration of the soil and the physical 
indices of changes, both of which belong to geology ; but 
while that science determines the succession of deposits, 
and consequently the relative period of their origin : the 
chronology of the formations, or the actual time occupied 
in their deposition, can only be determined by a reference 
to historical records, which may be of every kind that 
have been accepted in the illustration of tiie history of 
nations. In this consists the difference between geo- 
logical and historical chronology : the one regards mere 
succession, the other preserves the dates of those suc- 

Lands of Chaldcea, of Shinar^ and of Ashur or Assyria. 
— ^The positioning of the land of Chaldaea, of Shinar, and 
of Ashur or Assyria, upon which rose the Babylonian, 
the Chaldseo-Babylonian, and the Assyrian monarchies, 
is an essential preliminary to the inquiries which we at 
present propose to ourselves. 

Land of ChoMcea. — It may be satisfactorily collected 
from the amplitude of the Sacred text, that the heads of 
the renovated race of mankind, conducted by the waters 
of the Euphrates, came to the land of Shinar, or Senaar, 
towards the west, according to the Vulgate version of the 
BiUe ; towards the east, according to Genesiufii, followed 


by Heeren ; and according to the tradition of Berosus, 
by a circuitous route ; further, that the members of the 
human race brought with them knowledge of all kinds ; 
and lastly, that the dispersion took place from the banks 
of the Euphrates, — ^according to Sir William Jones and 
Sir William Ousely, not westward only, nor eastward, 
as it might, with equal reason, be asserted, but in all 

This brief but strictly comprehensive account of the 
earliest migrations of the post-diluvian races, has been read 
by some as having reference to " the whole earth," and 
that all the inhabitants journeyed towards " the plain," in 
the land of Shinar. Others have considered, on the con- 
trary, the narrative only to refer to a portion of the then 
existing people of the earth, but that the most powerful, 
and those who were more immediately under the eye of 
God. I prefer the last mode of viewing the subject, on 
several grounds, among which is more particularly, a 
natural belief, from other portions of Scripture, from the 
history of the various emigrations of mankind, and from the 
strong natural inferences which are to be drawn from the 
position of the parties ; that all the children of Noah did 
not descend along the course of the rivers, but that some 
remained in the country of the preservation of the ark. 

After the divine institution of a visible covenant be- 
tween the Creator and the protected of God, the history 
of Noah is succeeded by that of the sons of Ham, each 
destined to be the head of a great race : Cush of Baby- 
lonia, Mitzraim of Egypt, and Canaan of the future 
Palestine : and Cush, who is identical with the Bel of the 
Babylonians, begat Nimrod, the beginning of whose king- 
dom was the territory held from his father, but who went 


forth and built four great cities, and laid the foundation 
of a new empire. 

But the children of Shem left in part their names, 
and their memory is connected with, the country of the 
north. Thus Haran died before his father Terah, in 
the land of his nativity, in Ur of the Chaldees ; a name 
which most Oriental scholars now agree in looking upon 
as belonging rather to a district or country, than to a 
city; while the names of Haran and of Seruj are still 
attached in the present day in the same country to the 
ruins of Haran, the Charrhse of the Romans; and to 
Seruj, on the plain. 

Ur of the Chaldees, — ^The city of Ur, which was in Ur 
of the Chaldees, and the seat of the nativity of Abraham 
and of the death of Haran, is, to the present day, de- 
nominated by the Syrians Urhoi, by the Arabs corrupted 
into 'Urfah or 'Orfah. It is at the foot of the mountains 
of Osroene, and at the head of the same great and fertile 
plain, which contains the seats of the patriarchs of the 
family of Shem ; Haran, and Seruj. Tradition has con- 
secrated 'Urfah as the birth-place of the father of Isaac, 
and the Birket el Ibrahim el Khalil is still supposed to 
contain the descendants of the fish loved by the Prophet. 
'Urfah is also celebrated as the residence ofvAkbar, com- 
monly called Agbarus, by Herodotus Avyapo^y who is said 
to have written a letter to our Saviour. 

Ur was not only " Ur of the Chaldees," (Gen. xi. 28, 
Aben Ezra in Gen., Bochart, lib. i., Phaleg, x., and Hugo 
Grotius in Gen.) but is more particularly described as in 
the land of the Chaldseans (Josephus, lib. i. ; Antiq. vii.), 
and by Eusebius as " Ur oppidum regni Chaldseorum," 


that is, of the kingdom founded by Chesed ; the same 
author also says, " In urbe Camarina, seu Urie, quae 
Graeeis dicta Chaldaeopolis." Oriental historians conduct 
the patriarch Abraham, in his migration to the land of 
Canaan, from Harari to Berza, or Beroe, the modern 
Aleppo ; and 'Ahmed Ibn Yusuf, and Abu Mohammed 
Mustafah, identify Ur with Roha, the modern 'Urfah. 
From the records of the Holy Writ we gather (Gen. xi. 
31) that Terah and Abraham, with others of the family, 
went out of Ur to go into the land of Canaan, and they 
came into Haran, and dwelt there. It is evident, that, 
had the Ur of the Chaldees been identical with the Ur 
of Babylonian Chaldsea, the Orchoe of Ptolemy and Pliny; 
that the way of the patriarchs did not lie through Haran 
in Mesopotamia; but even the direction of the journey is 
preserved in the amplitude of the Sacred text, for we 
are expressly informed (Gen. xii. 9), that the patriarch 
"journeyed, going on still towards the south." 

Ur, in the progress of corruption, became Urhoi, Roha, 
'Orfah or 'Urfah, and, with change of masters, Chaldaeo- 
polis, Antiochea, Callirhoe, and Edessa. Mr. Buckingham 
has apparently mistaken what Benjamin of Tudela says 
of Dakia, or Rakkah, as belonging to 'Urfah, and hence 
he makes Haran two days' journey from that city, from 
which it is in reality visible at almost all times, and a 
ride of only eight hours, or about 20 miles, in direct 

ChaldtEans. — It has been averred that the nation of the 
Chaldaeans had their origin and name from Chased, son of 
Nahor. (Gen. xxii. 22 ; Cellarius, lib. iii. c. xvi.) Hiero- 
nymus, in " Questions on Genesis," c. xxii,, says the sam^ 


thing: "Chased, son of Nahor, from whom Chasdim, 
afterwards called Chaldaii." It appears, however, that 
Chased only united the scattered tribes of a pre-existing 
race, or else, by founding a dynasty, created a nation for the 
land of Ur, which existed in the first years of Abraham, 
and was only emphatically distinguished by the Hebrews 
as " Ur in the land of the Chaldees," subsequently to the 
times both of Abraham and of Chased. 

A question, which had not been decided upon by the 
ancients, ^has only lately been revived among historio- 
graphers. Herodotus has only noticed the Chaldseans 
(Clio, 181) as a tribe of priests ; Diodorus (lib. i. 28) as 
a separate caste under Belus, an Egyptian priest ; while 
the book of Daniel ever refers to them as astrologers, 
magicians, and soothsayers ; but there can be little doubt, 
as laid down by Gesenius in Isaiah (xxiii. 13), that it 
was the name of a distinct nation, if not, as Heeren 
(" Man. of Ancient History," p. 28) has advocated, the 
name of the Northern nomades in general. Strabo, who 
had treated of them as philosophers (xvi. 739), knew them 
also as a nation, " Est et Chaldceorum natio ;" and Cicero 
(de Deo Divinitate, lib. i. c. i.), " Chaldaei non ex artis 
sed ex gentes vocabulo nominati." 

In this connexion with Babylonia, the Chaldaeans are 
to be regarded as a conquering nation, as well as a learned 
people ; they introduced a correct method of reckoning 
time, and began their reign with Nabonassar, 747 B. c. It 
is during the brilliant period of the Chaldaeo-Babylonian 
empire, which extended until 538 B.C., when the great city 
was, in accordance with the prophecy of Daniel, sacked and 
destroyed ; that the inspired writings of the Hebrews and 
the profane narratives of Herodotus and Diodorus, unite 


in always regarding these interluders, merely as the wise 
men of Babylonia. 

ChaMcBO-Bahylonian Empire. — From this period, how- 
ever, Babylonia became the land of the Chaldaeans, the 
same as that to which the children of Judah were carried 
away into captivity (Jer. xxiv. 5,) and which contained 
Babylon (Jer. l. i.; Ezekiel xii. 13); was the seat of the 
king of Babylon (Jer. xxv. 12) ; and contained the house 
of the god of Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel i. 1, 2.) 

The profane historians lend their testimony to the 
same effect. (Diod. Sic. lib. ii. cap. xi. xii. ; Ptolemy, lib. 
V. cap. XX. ; Strabo, lib. xvi. ; Josephus, lib. i. cap. v. ; 
Eusebius, lib. ix. cap. xv. ; and Pliny, lib. v. cap. xii.) 
Cellarius, the valuable recorder of the opinions of an- 
tiquity in geography, asserts the same identity. 

There is another scriptural reference to this proud 
period in the history of the Chaldees, when learned men 
filled the streets and the temples of Nineveh and Babel : 
— " Behold the land of the Chaldeans ; this people was 
not, till the Assyrian founded it for them that dwell in the 
wilderness : they set up the towers thereof, they raised 
up the palaces thereof; and he brought it to ruin." — 
(Isaiah xxiii. 13.) 

Chcddcea Proper. — But on the overthrow of the 
Chaldaeo-Babylonian dynasty, when Nebuchadnezzar had 
founded the city of Teredon upon the borders of the sea 
of Persia, and at a time when the Chaldaeans exulted in 
their ships (Isaiah xLiii. 14,) the same people appear to 
have founded, on the confines of Arabia, and not far from 
the sea, a great city which was called after their father-land, 


Ur, and which subsequently became the Orchoe of the 
Greeks, and Urchoe or Orchoe of the Latins. To this coun- 
try they retired in the period of oppression, and it was called 
after them Chaldaea, although many who were attached to 
the peaceful arts still dwelt in Bursif, or Borsippa, which 
was a quarter in the city of Babylon ; and hence Strabo 
(xvi.739) notices the Orchenian and Borsippean Chaldseans. 

This was now the Chaldaea of Ptolemy, which was that 
part of Babylonia which tended towards Arabia Deserta, 
and still more specifically defined by Strabo, to be that 
part of Babylonia which tended towards Arabia and the 
Persian Gulf; and it is this new country of the Chal- 
deans, combined with the territory of Babylonian Erech 
(Irak), that most modern geographers have satisfied them- 
selves with considering not only as Chaldsea Proper, but as 
Chaldaea solely. 

The cities which belonged to this new district, besides 
Orchoe and Teredon, were, according to Cellarius ; Chu- 
duca, Bethana, Biramba, and Thelme. 

Land of Shinar or Senaar. — Independently of the 
great and fundamental fact, as conveyed to us by the tes- 
timony of the Holy Writ, that it was in the land of 
Shinar that the children of Noah congregated in their 
first emigration after the Deluge ; the same evidence which 
has been adduced to establish the identity of the Chaldaea 
of Scriptures and of Babylonia ; satisfies us with regard to 
that of Shinar, and of the land of the Captivity. Profane 
historians have almost universally agreed to the identity ; 
Hieronymus speaks of Senaar as a plain of Babylonia ; and 
Cellarius (lib. ii. 722) regards the same identity as result- 
ing from the evidence of all antiquity. 


The most ancient record (Gen. xi. 1 — 7) that refers to 
Babylon, represents them as a nation possessing fixed 
abodes and political institutions. Every one is familiar 
with the accounts which the Mosaic narrative gives us of 
the first empire founded by Nimrod, and of the celebrated 
building of which Jehovah prevented the completion. 
These traditions are among the foundation-stones of our 
religious belief. The comparison of them with the Baby- 
lonian mythology of Berosus satisfies us with regard to 
their truth ; and, to use the words of Heeren, " there is, 
perhaps, nowhere else to be found a narrative so venerable 
for its antiquity, or so important in the history of civili- 
zation : in which we have at once preserved the traces of 
primeval international commerce, the first political asso- 
ciations, and the first erection of secure and permanent 
dwellings." — ("Asiatic Nations," vol. ii. p. 146.) 

Tower of Bahel (see Vignette). — ^The idea entertained 
by the first of the nations of men, of preventing their 
being scattered abroad upon the face of the earth (Gen. 
xi. 4,) by building ^ lofty tower which should reach to 
the high heavens ; is applicable, in the most remarkable 
manner, to the wide and level plains of Babylonia, where 
scarcely one object exists difierent to another to guide the 
stranger in his journeying, and which in those days, as in 
the present, were a sea of land, and the compass unknown. 
The eifect of these high places, characteristic almost 
everywhere of some Babylonian or Chaldsean site, remaias 
as striking as ever. 

Chaldasan beacons, over the drear sand 
Seen faintly from thick-towered Babylon 
Against the sun-set. 


or rising from the horizon's verge like giant pillars, de- 
ceiving the weary traveller in their distance, and con- 
torted by a lake of light (Shrab) into a hundred fantastic 
forms ; yet still faithfully guiding him, to one point in his 
destination. Such is the pile of Aker-Kuf, such the me- 
morable Birs, and the still more colossal mounds of 
Urchoe, of Teredon, and of Irak. 

How limited is the criticism of man, when he supposes 
the Deity to have regarded with jealousy these impotent 
attempts, although so fair in our eyes, to rival the moun- 
tains which He has reared upon the earth's surface ! It 
was evidently not the building, but the object, which was 
not agreeable in the eyes of the Almighty; and hence the 
families of future nations were hurried, by a new dispen- 
sation, to their several destinations. 

Identity of Shinar and of Babylonia. — ^The positioning 
of the land of Shinar, is of the highest importance towards 
determining the geography of the Basin of the Euphrates 
and the Tigris at the period of the post-diluvian emigration. 
The identity of this territory with that.of Babylonia is made 
evident at the outset of such an inquiry, and the identity of 
the Babel of Nimrod with the Babylon of the Captivity and 
the Babylon of Herodotus and of Diodorus, is not only 
forced upon us as resulting from this first step in the inves- 
tigation ; but in every subsequent one which we take, the 
more we enter into detail, the more it will be found that, in 
the positioning of the various cities of the land of Shinar, 
the configuration of ancient Babylonia, and the historical 
events which belong to these countries, at a period subse- 
quent to the existence of traditionary and documentary 
records ; this identification becomes further strengthened, 


till it may be said to possess all the certainty which can be 
desirable for an inquiry referring to times of such a remote 
antiquity. The physical characters of the country,-— the 
ineifable impress of the hand of nature, — every existing 
monument, and all traditionary and valid records which 
have been saved from the scythe of time, unite in deter- 
mining the position of the land of Shinar and of Babylonia 
on the alluvial plains of the Euphrates and the Tigris. 

Notwithstanding the force of this cumulative evi- 
dence, there have been no want of dissentients from 
opinions almost generally received. The identity of 
Shinar and Senaar with the Sinjar of modern times, has 
been advanced upon the unphilosophical and distant 
analogy of name. Benjamin of Tudela calls the whole of 
Mesopotamia by the name of Senaar, and even the judi- 
cious Niebuhr has remarked upon, but not advocated, the 
relation of Sinjar with the Senaar of the Bible. St* 
Jerome, according to Cellarius (p. 441, 448), speaks of 
Arach or Erech as identical with Edessa, and Accad with 
Nisibin ; and by a still more remote approximation, Abu- 
el- Faraj, educated in the monasteries of the Masius, iden- 
tified Erech, Accad, and Chalne, with 'Urfah, Nisibin, and 
Mardin. Independently of the objections against such 
an identification which exists in the correct positioning 
of Senaar, the country of Sinjar does not correspond at all 
with the physical description of the land of Senaar as con-* 
tained in the Holy Writ, and which describes it as a 
plain. Sinjar is a rocky, hilly, and stony district, — a 
country of uplifted tertiary formations, and of pseudo- 
volcanic rocks, and its name is indicative of a country 
" oppressed with stones like teeth," and amidst this wild 
district there are no monuments^ nor are there any tradi« 


tions preserved, which in any way assist in the determi- 
nation of the sites of the great cities of the kingdom of 

A modern writer, Mr. Beke, in his " Origines Biblicae, 
(1834, p. 66,) has argued that Noah and his family, jour- 
neying from the east, descended the valley of the Eu- 
phrates from the mountains of Ararat to the point where 
that river turns nearly at right angles to the southward, 
and passes through the chain of Taurus, and that the spot 
to which they were thus brought, which is the very 
centre of a mountain district, may be " considered to be 
that plain in the land of Shinar which became the first 
fixed residence of the progenitors of the human race." 

Land of Asliur, or Assyria. — ^The importance, in the 
next place, of determining the position of the land of 
Ashur, is to distinguish it, with the land of the Chaldees, 
and the Chaldaea of subsequent times, from that of Shinar. 
If the Chaldaeans can be shown to have inhabited three 
different territories, the Ur of the Chaldaeans, the Chaldseo- 
Babylonian kingdom, and Chaldaea Proper ; in the same 
manner the land of Ashur can be identified with Assyria 
and Aturia, and thus it is at the same time evident, that 
the plain of Shinar was not in the mountains of Sophena, 
the hills of Sinjar, or the more level country of Osroene, 
in Mygdonia or Corduene, or any of the adjacent districts. 

It has been a matter of discussion, concerning the 
true reading of the Biblical text, whether we should under- 
stand in Gen. x. 11, that Nimrod went out of the land 
of Shinar into Ashur, or that Ashur, the son of Shem, 
V. 22, went forth from that land and builded the cities of 
Nineveh, of Rehoboth, of Calah, and of Resen. I prefer 


the former version, because Ashur is not mentioned in 
Holy Writ, except in connexion with Shem; who not 
improbably, although not necessarily, remained in the 
land of the Cbaldees, when Ashur became the founder 
of that country of which Ninus or Nimrod was subse- 
quently the conqueror or consolidator, and perhaps the 
earliest monarch. Thus, Hieronymus says, " Apud 
Assyrios, Ninum sui nominis condidit urbem." 

Be this as it may, it appears indubitable that Assyria 
owes its name to Ashur, and was also called Aturia, by the 
transmutation, according to Dion Cassius (xviii. 26), of the 
s into t by the barbarians. Benjamin of Tudela corroborates 
the fact that the great Nineveh was called " the great 
Asur." Hyde, p. 41, says that Assyria was first named 
from Ashur, and Abu-el-Fedah notices Nineveh as the 
capital of the domain of Atur. 

Under the common appellation of Assyrian monarchy, 
the Greeks continued to designate the ruling nations 
about the Euphrates and the Tigris, to the times of 
Cyrus. With the Jews, on the contrary, it always 
signifies a distinct nation of conquerors, and the founders 
of an empire. (Heeren, " Man." p. 25.) The Aturia of 
the Romans, was, however, only a province of ancient 
Assyria. According to Strabo, Aturia was separated from 
the territory of Arbeles (Erbil) by the river Lycus (Zab). 
In Musul, " the city of destination," (a name which, at 
the period of the Mohammedan conquest, was transferred 
from Eski Musul to the Cbaldsean town of Atur,) each 
Christian church still takes pride in its old MS. Bible, 
written in the language, or rather dialects, of the Syro- 
Chaldseans; and which, in their title-pages, uniformly 
declare the year and time when, under Divine Providence, 


that copy of the Holy Scriptures, was undertaken or com- 
pleted, in the city of Atur. 

Bahyhmia. — ^That part of the territory of Babylonia 
which is comprised between Pylse of Xenophon and 
Paludes Babyloniae, now marshes of Lemlum ; appears to 
have remained, physically speaking, nearly in the same 
condition since the deluge of Noah, up to the present 
time. It was the spot to which the early descendants of 
the patriarch attached themselves; and its history involves 
the fall of empires, and the destruction of cities ; and not 
a few changes have ensued in the features of the soil, by 
the new circumstances which originated from these; in 
the direction and number of its canals ; and the efforts 
that were made to regulate and constrain the floodings of 
the Euphrates. 

Canals of Babylonia. — ^The antiquity of the canals of 
Babylonia, dates from the most remote periods of the 
Chaldseo-Babylonian monarchy. The ancient kings of 
Assyria, and of Babylonia, understood the value of canals 
as well as the Egyptians, Indians, Chinese, or the modem 
commercial states of Europe; and the great empire of 
Babylonia rose upon the alluvial plain of Western Asia, 
amid a system of irrigation and draining which spread 
like a net- work over the land. The Babylonian district, 
says Herodotus (Clio, cxciii.) like Egypt, is intersected by 
a number of canals, which facilitated the intercourse of 
peace and commerce, and which, in the language of 
Gibbon, armed the despair of the Assjnrians with the 
means of opposing a sudden deluge to the progress of an 
invading army. 


Ndhr Isd. — The first and most northerly ot these 
canals was the Nahr Isa, derived from Euphrates, at a 
place called Dehmah, opposite to Kufah, and near Anbar. 
On reaching Muhawll, many smaller streams were given 
from it. In the time of Abii-el-Fedah, it lost itself in 
Tigris, in the heart of Western Baghdad. This canal is 
the same as the Barax or Baia Malcha of Ammianus 
Marcellinus. It got its modern name from Isa Ibn 
Abdullah Ibn Abbas, an uncle of Mansur. Anbar was 
the Macepracta of Julian. 

Ndhr Sarsdr. — ^The Nahr Sarsar or Serser, had its 
sources below the Isa, and flowed into the Tigris above 
Madayn. This corresponds to the present Zimberaniyah. 
Al Edrissi notices it, " unam pergit ad Tsarsar." This is 
the city of which Abu-el- F^dah says there was one on each 
of the canals. Ammianus notices a canal between Mace- 
practa (Anbar) and Perisabor, on the Nahr Malikah. 
Hence this is the same as the Sarsar. He calls it 
Maogamalcha, and mentions a city of th^ same name : 
Lindenbrogius writes it, Maiogamalcha. 

Ndhr Malikah. — ^The canal most generally known by 
the name of Nahr Malikah, the Flumen Regium, and 
Royal Canal, of authors, dates from the most remote 
periods of Babylonian antiquity. The fact that it is 
attributed by common tradition to Nimrod, and is by 
Tabari, in Chap. " de Morte Sarae," described as the work 
of Cush, king of Babel ; attest that its origin is coeval with 
the earliest period of the Babylonian monarchy. Aby- 
denus attributes it, however, to Nebuchadnezzar. Poly- 
bius, lib. V. cap. 21, calls it fiaaiXc/crj Bmpa^^ the royal 

L 2 


ditch ; Ptolemy dignifies it as ^aaiXeio^ irojaiio^y the royal 
river. Isidore of Charax calls it Narmaka; Zosimus, 
lib. iii. c. xxiv., Narmalakes; Abydenus, apud Euseb. 
Proep. ix. c. xli., writes Armalakes ; Pliny, lib. vi. c. xxvi., 
Armalchar ; Scaliger calls it Harmacales and Aracanas ; 
but its real name, says the admirable Cellarius, ii. 741, is 

Ammianus notices it at Perisabor, beyond the Mace- 
practa. It is theNahrMalikahof Abu-el-Fedah,the second 
canal from the sea, the third in Babylonia. It is also the 
third of the four canals of Xenophon ; which, however, 
the Greek general makes only one farsang distant from 
one another, while Abu-el-F^^dah gives two. Rennell 
had already remarked upon the improbability of four 
such great bodies of water being extracted from either 
river within so short a distance as that given by the 
historian of the Anabasis. Ptolemy says, " Sub Apa- 
meam, miscitur Regium Fluvius, cum Tigri," which would 
make it the same as the Euphrates, unless Apamea was 
here Seleucia, which is the more probable, as Pliny has 
recorded the same fact, when he says that Seleucia was 
built '' in confluente Euphrates, fossa perducte, atque 
Tigris." The Perisabor of Ammianus was in a similar 
manner, '* ubi funditur Euphraten et trajecto Nalir 
Malca amno." There is no doubt, from these various 
testimonies, that up to a period of no very remote anti- 
quity, the river Euphrates was drained by the Royal 
River on the one hand, and, as we shall subsequently see, 
by the Kufah Canal on the other side; while the natural 
continuation of the river, designated as the Nahr Sares, 
and Narraga, or Fetid River, flowing by Susa, was lost 
in the Babylonian marshes. The outlet of the Royal 


River was at Seleucia ; that of the Kufah, at the Pallaco- 
pas ; flowing by Orchoe into the sea at Teredon. Abu-el- 
Fedah says, that the Nahr Mallkah flows into the Tigris, 
below Madayn. The Royal Canal at this period was, on 
the authority of Herodotus, of sufficient breadth and 
depth to be navigable for merchant vessels. It is not 
surprising that some theological writers have considered 
it as the ancient bed of Euphrates. 

Kuthah Canal. — ^The fourth of the canals of Xenophon 
and of Abu-el-Fedah, was the Kuthah or Kiilbah ; which, 
according to the latter of these authors, was derived from 
Euphrates, two farsangs below the Nahr Malikah, and 
watered the territory of Irak. 'Ahmed Ibn Yusuf also 
speaks of the canal on the road to Kuthah. It is the same 
as the Kawa of Rennell. 

Dr. Hyde, in his able work, " Historia Religionis 
Veterum Persarum," first obtained from antiquity the 
evidence of the former existence in Babylonia of a city, 
by name of Cush or Kutha. The seat of the territory of 
Cush was in Babylonia, from whence his posterity were 
translated into neighbouring Arabia, and thus the land, 
which was afterwards designated after Yarab, the son of 
Jocktan, was primarily called the land of Cush, afterwards 
that of Havilah, and ultimately Arabia (2 Chron. xxi. 16). 
" The Arabians, who lived near the Cushites;" in the Vul- 
gate, " the Ethiopians." 

The great city, which bore the name of the patriarch, 
was by the Hebrews called Kuth or Cutha. Abu Muham- 
med, in his " Universal History," also calls it li^ Kutha, 
and it was situated near Babel, in the province of Irak. 
The text of the Talmud, in Bava Vathra, 91. 1, says, 


that Abraham was imprisoned three years in Kutha. 
Cuth is mentioned in connexion with Babel in the Holy 
Writ : " And the men of Babylon made Succoth Benoth, 
and the men of Cuth made Nergal," (2 Kings xviii. 30,) 
and these were the idolaters who went out from among 
the Samaritans. According to Saphioddin, in his Lexi- 
con ; Kutha exists in two places in Irak ; one of which 
was Kutha al Taric, the other Kutha Robah, in which is 
the sepulchre of Abraham. Hyde says, " Kutha al Taric 
is the same as Kutha via?, while Kutha is Robah, Kutha 
coUiculorum seu tumulorum." It is the Kutha Rabba 
of Kissos ul Ambia (Art. " Kush and Nimrod,") and the 
Mesjid Ibrahim el Khalil of the present day, neighbour- 
ing the Birs Nimrud. 

In the time of Abu-el-Fedah, Kuthah, on the canal of 
the same name, was approached by a bridge, and was 
a Mohammedan city ornamented with mosques. The 
ruins appear in the present day to be represented by the 
mounds of Towibah, often considered as the north quarter 
of ancient Babylon. 

Canals of the City of Babylon, — In the time of Abu- 
el-Fedah, when the Nahr Malikah no longer carried off a 
main part of the waters of the Euphrates ; the Orientalist 
describes the river as dividing after passing the Nahr 
Kulbah by six farsangs, into two streams, but previous to 
this it parted with more canals, which belonged to the 
city of Babylon proper. 

Quarters of the City. — Like other great cities in the 
East, — as Ctesiphon and Seleucia became Coche and Al 
Madayn ; Opis became ApoUonia and Babelin, and Nine- 


veh was Ninus, Mespila and Atur, — so the great Babel was, 
in the lapse of time, known by different names, and ulti- 
mately subdivided into various parts. The materials are 
scarcely suflicient for a thorough understanding of the 
progress of these changes, the scattered records of history 
only afford an occasional glimpse at when such a new 
state of things were in existence, and an acquaintance 
with the great revolutions which had affected all orders 
of men in these countries, serves to diminish the other- 
wise total obscurity in which we should be left with 
regard to the cause and progress of these metropolitan 

El Bits. — ^The first quarter that appears to have been 
separated from the mother city, if indeed it was not 
originally distinct, was that on the west side of the river, 
and which contains the Birs Nimrud. The word Birs, 
as applied to this mound or ruin, cannot be satisfactorily 
explained in Arabic as a derivative of that language ; and 
it would appear that all attempts to deduce it from the 
Hebrew or Chaldaic tongues have failed, as they are 
founded on a change of the radical letters. The Kamus 
gives Birs as the name of a town or district between 
Hillah and Kiifah. In the Chaldaic, Sidra Rablia of the 
Sabbajans, it is mentioned under the name of Bursif, 
whence the Borsippa of Strabo, and other old writers, 
directly proceeds. Strabo describes the city as being 15 
miles below Babylon, and a famous manufacturing town. 
Josephus in " Apion." Op. p. 1045, relates that Nabon- 
nedus, flying from Cyrus, shut himself up in the town of 
Borsippa, which Heeren (" Asiat. Nat.," vol. ii., p. 202,) 
reads, was imprisoned there by Cyrus. Ptolemy notices 


the town under the name of Barsita. Cellarius considers 
the Hipparenum of Pliny as Borsippa. 

Like all the quarters of Babylon, Borsippa, or Burslf, 
had its canal. Marudi, in his " Universal History," 
notices it under the name of Nahr al Birs. It was from 
Birs, or Bursif, that the produce of the Birssean looms, 
the cloth of Birs, derived its name. The almost only 
remnant of Borsippa, probably the temple of a national 
worship performed in high places ; one of which belonged 
to each Babylonian city, and to each of the quarters of 
Babylon itself; still preserves its ancient name, Birs, to 
which a superstitious tradition has coupled that of Nim- 
rud ; as Resen and Larissa are now lost in the reverence 
given to the founder of the early homes of the Assyrians. 
This Birs Nimrud has been generally looked upon as the 
remnant of the great pile of Babel, but from what has 
been detailed, it will appear much more probably to have 
belonged to the city of Birs, Burslf, and Borsippa ; which 
was perhaps one of the quarters of the Babylon of 

Babel. — The distinction between Kutah, probably 
the north quarter of the Babylon of Herodotus, and the 
original Babel, has been alluded to. Marudi, in his 
" Universal History," mentions Babil, the capital of Afe- 
radun, and one of the climates of the earth ; so named 
from the name proper to one of its towns. This town is 
situated on both banks of one of the canals derived from 
the Frat in the province of Irak, one hour's journey from 
the city called Jisr Babil, and the canal of Al Birs. 

The quarter of Babel itself appears, to have, at one 
period, changed its name, and to have received that of Nil. 
The mounds of Babel and the Mujalibah are nearly sur- 


rounded by two canals, which bear that name in the pre- 
sent day. Abu-el-F^dah describes the main stream of 
the Frat as flowing to the city of Nil, and giving off the 
canal of Nil, after which it is called Ndhr Sirat. D'An* 
ville also notices a town called Nilus, without having a 
definite idea of its position. 

The square superficies of the mound of Babel is 
49,000 feet ; its elevation at the south-east corner, 64 
feet. To the south of it is the Mujalibah, having a square 
superficies of 120,000 feet, and a height of only 28 ; 
beyond them again, the Amram Ibn Ali, having an area 
of 104,000 feet, and an elevation of 23. The Mujalibah 
has been read as if it were Mukallib, from Kllba, " the 
overturned, or overthrown," whereas a much nearer affinity 
exists to Mujalibah, plural of Jallb, a slave or captive, 
" the House of the Captives," and not improbably the resi- 
dence of the Israelites who remained in Babylon. This 
version is favoured by the name of Harut and Marut, 
given to the mound by the natives, from a tradition, 
that near the foot of the ruin there is an invisible pit, 
where D'Herbelot relates that the rebellious people are 
hung with their heels upwards until the day of judgment. 

The Kasr, or palace, is a mound of about 700 yards in 
length and breadth. Its moulded bricks ornamented 
with inscriptions, and its glazed and coloured tiles, added 
to the sculptures that have been found there, speak of its 
importance, and have led to iti being generally looked 
upon as the eastern, and the largest of the palaces of the 
Babylonian monarchs, renowned for its sloping gardens. 

Between the Kasr and the Amram, there is every 
probability the river Euphrates once flowed, where the 



subaquatic tunnel of Semiramis may have also existed, 
and where quays lined the banks, at the time Alexander 
was carried over during his last illness. Heeren has, 
almost alone, endeavoured to identify the western palace 
of Diodorus, with existing mounds on the west side of the 
actual bed of the Euphrates. 

The Amram Ibn All, ao called from a son of AH, has 
been more generally, and with probably a greater degree 
of plausibility, identified with the western palace. It is 
surmounted by ridges or mounds of ramparts, which were 
the defence of this large space, and of all the establish- 
ments which it contained. 

In the same manner, the MujaKbah, the Kasr, and 
the Amram, were all enclosed by two lines of defence 
which formed a triangle, of which one solid angle was at 
Mujalibah, the other beyond the Amram, and the third 
to the east. 


Al Heimdr. — ^The foui'th quarter of Babel is marked 
in its central space by the mound of Al' Heimar or 
Hamir, an isolated eminence having a superficies of 
16,000 feet, and an elevation of 44, with a ruin on the 
summit 8 feet high. Of the history of this quarter I 
know nothing; its modern name is derivable from the 

Arabic root j^** Hamara, " to be or become red," denoting 
the red mass or ruin on the summit. Alhambra, one of 
the four wards of Granada, was also so called from the 
red colour of the materials of its buildings. 

Kufah Canal. — ^The Euphrates, on the authority of 
Abu-el-Fedah, after passing the Nahr Kulbah by six 
farsangs, and giving off the Nil, was divided into two 
streams, the southernmost of which passed into Kufah, and 
going beyond it, was lost in the marshes of the Rumiyah. 
This was in the time of Abu-el-Fedah ; for at a period 
anterior to that, it flowed by Ur or Orchoe ; being joined 
in the parallel of Diwanlyeh by the Pallacopas of Alex- 
ander ; and ultimately emptied itself into the sea, in the 
neighbourhood of Teredon. " Quartam denique ad Kufam 
juxta Pallacopas," says Al Edrissi ; and the same author, 
p. 204, says, " Euphrates in universam ditionem Kufa 
residuum ejus aquis in lacus influentibus." 

Ndhr Saves, — Abu-el-Fedah describes the prolonga- 
tion of the larger branch of the river Euphrates, as taking 
beyond the Kasr Ibn Hobeirah the name of Nahr 
Sarah, or Sares. The name of Nahr Sares {Naapaaprj^ 
of Ptolemy,) meaning fetid river, appears to have been 
given to that portion of Euphrates, which lay below -the 


Royal Canal, at a time when that derivative carried away 
a great part of the waters of the " Great River." The 
remainder, flowing sluggishly onwards by Babel and Sura, 
to lose itself in the marshes of Babylon, became, from its 
stagnant characters, impure and fetid, and was hence so 
designated. Pliny calls it Narraga. *' Flumen Foetidum 
(says Hyde) quod ad Paludes ducat per Babeleen/' " Aliud 
etiam ad Sura," says Al Edrissi, ^'Judaei autem mul- 
tarum frequentiam et synagogas laudant in quibus sunt 
Sura et Pombeditha." Cel. vi. xvi. Salomo Van Tilius 
places Pombeditha on the canal called Saocorae ; hence 
the same as the Nalir Soora or Sura. According to the 
Peutingerian tables, Volocesias was 18 Roman miles from 
Babylon, and on the Naarsares ; hence it must have been 
at or near the division mentioned above. Vologesias 
was a city much noticed by Tacitus, and also in the times 
of Nero and Vespasian ; Pliny calls it Vologescerta ; Ste- 
phanus writes it Bologesias; Ammianus, Vologessia. 
Between Vologesias and Barsita, according to Cellarius, 
was Duraba, another Babylonian city ; and nearer to the 
desert, Idacara. 

Other Canals, — To complete this detail, it only remains 
to notice some canals of more modern date, of which the 
most northerly was that of the Rehoboth of Scripture, 
upon the authority of Al Edrissi ; upon the same authority, 
and that of most oriental geographers, the canal Al 
Kadder, called by Al Edrissi, Alcator. The Kerbelah canal, 
called by Ockley (" Hist, of Saracens," vol. ii. p. 222) the 
Kerbelai river. Kerbelah, in Abdul Khurrlm's time, 
was a very populous town. The Persians having retreated 
to the tomb of their prophet, from the exactions of Nadir 


Shah, the Kerb^lah canal was opened by Hassan, Pasha 
of Baghdad, at an expense of 20,000/., and trade revived* 
(Vincent, p. 511.) Lastly, the Nesjeff canal, constructed 
by Nadir Shah. Nesjeff is, according to Abdul Khurrim, 
16 farsangs from Kerbelah, and 1 farsang from Kufah. 
The mosque where All received his death-wound was here, 
and Meshid Ali rose upon the spot ; hence its modern 
name. Nesjeff was, further, the ancient Hira^ which was 
the first place beyond the limits of Arabia, occupied by 
the Moslem, under the Abu Bin Khalifat. 

Median Wall. — The Median wall, extended across the 
northern portion of the plain of Babylonia ; but as the 
latest deposits by transport occupy a much more northerly 
prolongation in the valley of the river Tigris, than they 
do in that of Euphrates ; and this wall, — ^the Chali or Sid 
Nimrud of the Arabs, — follows pretty nearly the line of 
the most northerly extent of the alluvia ; so its course is 
nearly from south-west to north-east; starting from the 
Macepracta of Julian, and stretching, upon the authority 
Strabo, as far as Opis; near which it was first met with by 
Dr. Ross. It was, according to Xenophon, 58 miles in 
length. According to the same author, the Ten Thousand 
were on their fourth day's march from Pylse, or at a 
direct distance of 43.5 miles, at a trench* which extended 
12 par., or 34.8 miles, upwards to the wall of Media. 
The Pylae I have determined approximately to have been 
situated at the termination of the hilly country at the 
head of the alluvial plain, 8 miles north of Felujah. 
The Median wall being, from the statement of the same 
historian, at a distance of 34.8 miles from the Greeks, or 
8.7 less than that of the Pylse, it is thus brought to the 


site of Anbar, the capital of the Mondar Arab djniasty, 
and the Macepracta of Julian. 

Opis. — Passing from below the Median wall through 
an alluvial or diluvial soil of little tenacity, the Tigris has, 
in modern times, changed its course. The great canals 
derived from that river, in the flourishing times of the 
Khalifat, were the Nahrwan to the east, and the Dijel, to 
the west, both described by Abu-el-Fedah, as having 
dependant upon them, a considerable district of towns, 
villages, and cultivated lands, no longer in existence ; but 
the ruins of Harbah, of Shirat el 'Apt, of Wuzun, and a 
host of others, upon the Dijel; attest its former im- 
portance. Between it and Tigris is the ancient bed of 
the river, now designated as the Shut'ite. At the point 
where the Physcus would, in its prolongation to the 
ancient Tigris, have poured itself into that river, are 
ruins called Baballn (the second Babel), and which most 
probably belonged to Opis, for we know, from the autho- 
rity of Xenophon, that Opis was situated at the confluence 
of the river Physcus with Tigris. There are also exten- 
sive ruins observable at the present junction of the 
'Athim with Tigris, but that these are not the relics of 
Opis, is proved by the fact, that the ruins of Akbarah, a 
flourishing city in the time of the Khalifat, and known 
by name, and by tradition, to be upon the bed of the old 
Tigris ; and yet upon the authority of the Labat and of 
Abu-el-Fedah, they were in their time, upon the actual 
bed of the river. Unless the river ^has twice changed its 
course, it is only in modem times that it has recoiled to 
the east, and Opis and Akbarah were upon the same 


Sitace. — ^The Greeks, after marching 69.6 miles from 
Cunaxa to the Median wall, turned off 23.2 miles to 
Sitace, in order to gain the bridge on Tigris. The town 
itself is described as being 15 stades, or 1 mile 813 yards, 
from the river, and 58 miles from Opis. The ruins in a 
position thus fixed, are very extensive ; they consist of 
mounds, embankments, and canals, and commencing from 
Sheriat el Beitha, or " the place where you go down to 
the water," above Kathm^n, they extend northwards for 
some miles, and westward almost to the colossal tower of 
Aker-Kuf, from which they are, however, separated 
during a great part of the year, by inundations from the 
Euphrates. There cannot, therefore, be many reasonable 
doubts thrown upon the position of Sitace, whatever may 
have been the extent of Sitacene. 

Sitacene. — It is more difficult, notwithstanding the 
devious testimony of Pliny, to fix the extent of the latter 
country, than that of Mesene. We cannot, however, but 
admit the territory subject to Sitace to have comprised, if 
not the total, at least the centre of the district, and was 
not improbably contained within the Median wall on the 
one hand, and the Isa canal on the other. Cellarius and 
Bochart cite the Psittake of Stephanus, with little more 
information than that it is on Tigris. 

Accad. — It is in the territory of Sitacene, that the 
remarkable pile of buildings called Aker-Kuf, is still met 
with. It is 125 feet in height, and the brick-work is about 
400 feet in circumference. The bricks vary constantly in 
size, which has caused every traveller to give a different 
account of their dimensions. This monument of ancient 


times was considered by Niebuhr as an artificial moun- 
tain, on which a Persian king sought for cool air. Taver- 
nier viewed it as a beacon, and a modern traveller pro- 
claims it the residence of a powerful monarch. Its 
structure of sun-burnt bricks and layers of reeds, announce 
it, however, to be a Babylonian relic, not improbably one 
of the temples of a worship performed on high places, 
which were common to all Babylonian towns. The 
embankments of canals and of reservoirs, and the remnants 
of brickwork and pottery, occupy the surface of the plain 
all around, while the name bears a close affinity to that of 
the Accad of Scriptures. President de Brosses sought for 
the position of Chalne in Ctesiphon, a site of much proba- 
bility. Babel and Erech are known, and Accad ought, 
by the force of circumstances, to be in the same neigh- 
bourhood. Its appellation varies. Thus, in the text of 
the Talmud, it is called Aggada ; and even its age might 
be determined. Maimonides in Jud. Chaz. Tract. Madee, 
fol. 25, as quoted by Hyde, says, " Abraham xl. annos 
natus ; cognovit creatorem suum," and immediately adds, 
" Extat Aggada tres annos natus." It is important to 
remark, that the Aker-Kuf of the Arabs is designated as 
the Aker-i-Nimrud and Aker-i-Babil by the Turks. 

Paludes BahyUmicB. — The first great depression met 
with in going to the south is now occupied by the Lemlum 
marshes, and although in the time of Abu-el-Fedah, the 
river Euphrates still lost itself in these marshes, yet we 
have the authority of Diodorus and of Arrian, that even in 
the time of Alexander it was a country of marshes, and 
not a lake, and generally designated as the Paludes Baby- 
ionise. One of the latest useful works in which the 


Macedonian hero was engaged previous to his death, was 
in constructing a canal at a distance of 76 miles to the 
south of Babylon ; for the express purpose, as stated by his 
historians, of preventing the waters being drained from 
the marshes in the low season, and at the same time of 
guarding against too great an oveiflow during the floods. 
After founding the city of Alexandria upon this new 
branch of the Pallacopas, (which was in part opened through 
solid rock,) the emperor resolved upon sailing in the 
Paludes ; upon which occasion many of the galleys lost 
their way, and during a gust of wind the imperial tiara 
was carried away, the fillet being blown upon one of those 
antique monuments, which were said at that time to 
abound even in these aquatic districts. 

Territory between Babylonia and ChaldcBa. — ^The east- 
erly extent of the valley of the Lemltim marshes, leaves 
a narrow band of soil between the marshes and Tigris, 
which is everywhere covered, like the plains of Babylonia 
and of Chaldsea ; with the monuments of antique industry 
and enterprise. Thus the words of Arrian ("Exp. Alex." 
cxxii.) receive confirmation from existing mounds and 
ruins. This territory, inhabited by the Zobeid Arabs, 
contains the great mounds of Mizislthah, 'Ithahr, Uffiin, 
Jerrah Supli, Nimalah, and many others of minor import- 
ance, situated between the more massive, lofty, and 
extended system of ruins which belong to Zibliyah in the 
north, and to Jayithah Tel 'Siphr, and Irak, or Erech, on 
the south. On some of these monumental mounds, Messrs. 
Frazer and Ross found glazed earthen cofiins, still more 
corroborative of the descriptions of Arrian, who says the 
monuments or tombs of the kings of Assyria are said to 



be placed among these marshes. As in the present day 
the reed tombs, of a sheik, or holy man, are often to be 
seen islanded amidst a wilderness of water and of aquatic 

Territory of ChcMcea. — Jayithah and Tel 'Slphr 
(the hill of copper) lead the way, into the territory of 
Chaldsea proper ; while on the western confines is Gerah, 
now Kal'at Jerah ; recorded in the history of Abraham. 
To the west of 'Siphr, and having communication with the 
river Euphrates by the canal now called Grayhlm, are the 
great mounds of Erech, indifferently called Irak, Irka, 
and Senkerah, by the nomade Arabs ; and sometimes El 
Asayiah, " the place of pebbles." This interesting ruin, 
identified by Colonel Taylor with the Erech of Scriptures, 
was passed on the east by Messrs. Frazer and Ross, and 
by the Euphrates Expedition on the west ; but, surrounded 
by almost perpetual marshes and inundations, was visited 
by neither of the parties on the spot. 

Territory of Cybaie. — To the south, the territory of 
Chaldsea has been observed in the physical descriptions to 
gradually lower ; and this valley, now occupied by the 
Shlit el Hie, was formerly the bed of the river Tigris, 
which, crossing the country above Filaf it, a Parthian sepul- 
chre of remote antiquity ; is still marked out by the natives 
as Dejailahj the old Tigris, as far as to the ruins of Nu- 
shayit, or Waslt, about four miles to the south-east of 
Hie, and the seat of the ancient Cybate. The termination 
of the Nahr Wan, which left Tigris near Samarah, into 
Euphrates, after coursing by Baghdad and Kfit Aamarah, 
is in the same valley. 


Ancient Difference of Level. — ^The principal considera- 
tion which presents itself here, of the relative level of 
Euphrates and Tigris, has been discussed in treating of 
the actual physical aspect of the soil ; and there can be no 
doubt, from what has been detailed of the Nahr Malikah ; 
notwithstanding the evidence of Xenophon to the contrary, 
and the existence of this ancient bed of the Tigris ; that 
the circumstances of configuration and disposition which 
occur now, also obtained in ancient times. The superior 
level of the river Euphrates at its issue into the alluvial 
plain, allows it to pour its watei-s into Tigris ; while losing 
that superiority in the marshes of Lemlum; the river 
Tigris more than returns its previous charge, beyond the 
next delta deposit. Hence came the Ostium Tigris 
Orientale of Ptolemy, the Pasitigris of Pliny ; Nearchus 
considering the Ostium Occidentale of the same geogra- 
pher as the then mouth of the river Euphrates. 

JRoad of Semiramis. — ^Beyond the mounds of Sertit 
and Filaf it, upon the river Tigris ; and below Kut Aama- 
rah, and not at Mumillah, the site given by Mignan ; the 
Expedition met with the ruins of a bridge, which was most 
probably on the line of the great road, which ranks among 
the apocryphal labours of Semiramis ; and which Alexander 
followed in proceeding from Babylon to Susa. At Teib 
it is a causeway of considerable length, at Serut it crossed 
the river Tigris by a bridge of masonry, and it probably 
ascended by Zibliyah to terminate at or near Tel Hei'mar. 

Tei^ritort/ of Urchoe.-^A little north of the parallel, of 
the antique mouth, of the river Tigris ; we have observed 
the gigantic mounds, designated as the Mfigeiyer, first 

M 2 


observed by Pietro Delia Valle in 1625, and determined by 
Rennell to be identical with the Urchoe of the Greeks. 
It was the Ur of the Chaldseo-Babylonians, the Urchoe of 
Ptolemy, and placed by Arrian, Salmasius, and Cellarius, 
near the Pallacopas. From what has been previously 
proved from historical references, of. the river Euphrates 
being drained on the one hand by the Nahr Malikah, 
and on the other by the Pallacopas, it will be understood 
why Pliny said, " Euphraten praeclusere Orchoeni nee nisi 
Pasitigri defertur in mare." The Euphrates was carried 
off by the Kufah canal to the west, also by the Pallacopas 
of Alexander, and by the canal which previous to that had 
been kept open by the Persian satraps, at great expense 
and labour. Flowing by Ur or Orchoe, it was still ques- 
tionable if it emptied itself into the sea at Teredon alone, 
or united with the canal called Jarrl Zaid ; till Colonel 
Chesney, on his last passage across the desert, met with 
the bed of a canal several miles west of Zobeir, and which 
evidently flowed past Jebel Sinam, and which has been 
identified with the antique Teredon. Certain it also is, that 
the present bed of the river Euphrates was then the Fetid 
River, losing itself in the Paludes Babyloniae, and which, 
joining the river Tigris in the territory of Cybate, became 
the Ostium Tigris Orientale of Ptolemy, while the Palla- 
copas, thus filled with the waters. of Euphrates, was by 
Nearchus, by Strabo, by Arrian, and by Pliny, looked 
upon as the real bed of that river. 

As late as in 1784, Suleiman, Pasha of Baghdad, threw 
a bank across the river Euphrates at Diwanlyah ; with an 
intention of throwing the river into the old channel of the 
Pallacopas, in order to attack the Khezail Arabs ; but the 
effort appears to have had no important result. 


The Nahr Saleh, or Jarri Zaid, continued navigable as 
late as the beginning of the Mohammedan era, as Zobeir, 
or old Basrah, was still inhabited, when Ayfshah fell before 
the victorious All. 

Chdldcean Lake. — The second great depression which 
occurs after the territory of Chaldaea Proper, we have 
observed to be, in the present day, the seat of an almost 
perpetual inundation ; and, there is every reason to believe, 
was known to antiquity, as the Chaldsean lake. Pliny 
(lib. vi. c. 27), says, " Vicus ad Chaldaicum lacum vocatur 
Aphle ;" and at another place, " Tigris inter Seleuciam 
et Ctesiphontem, vectus in Lacus Chaldaicos, refundit. 
Eosque Ixx. M. pass, amplitudine implet." Pliny places 
Aphl^ at the end of the lake. Herodotus places his Amp^ 
at the mouth of the Tigris ; hence the locality of the 
embouchure of the Tigris, and of the termination of the 
Chaldsean lake, must be sought for in the west, in the 
district of the Muntiflk Arabs. Ibn Haukal has, notwith- 
standing, an Ableh, which he places opposite to the mouth 
of the Kerah. 

Progress of Alluvia. — Certain it is, that the sites of 
Amp^ or Aphle, and of Apamea, rose upon the new and 
less defined lands which separated the lake of Chaldaea 
from that of Susiana in the east, while, on the littoral 
confines of the ocean, Nebuchadnezzar had founded 
Teredon, subsequently Diridotis, and which was succeeded 
by Zobeir ; as Alexander afterwards called an Arabian 
colony by his name, which was afterwards Tospasinus, 
Spasinus Charax, Charax, Haffar, and now Mo'ammerah ; 
while in still more recent times the sites of 'Abadan and 


Al Shasiyabat have led the way to the actual condition of 
the mouths of these great rivers. 

Territory of Mesene. — ^The new lands contained be- 
tween the lake of Chaldaea and that of Susiana, constituted 
a portion of the Mesene of antiquity. Strabo (xvi. 739) 
places Mesene south of Chaldaea, and between Babylon 
and the Persian Gulf. Pliny gives a similar description. 
Dion Cassius calls it Mesene of Tigris (Ixviii. 28). 

But it appears also, that all the territories to the east 
that lay between the Susian lake and the Persian Gulf, 
were comprised in this denomination. Thus in the narra- 
tive of Xiphilinus we learn, that " after Trajan had taken 
Ctesiphon, he determined to navigate the Red Sea, that is, 

the Gulf of Persia There is an island there formed 

by the Tigris, called Messana, under the government "of 
Athambilus; this Trajan reduced without difficulty, but 
was himself brought into great hazard from the season of 
the year, the violence of the stream, and the inundation 
of the tide. The inhabitants of the fortress of Tospasinus 
relieved him, however, by their friendly reception of him 
into the place. This fortress is in the territory of 

It only remains, then, to know the site of Tospasinus, 
to be acquainted so far with the extent seawards of 
Mesene ; and Pliny has spoken definitely upon this sub- 
ject : " Charax habitatur in coUe manufacto inter conflu- 
entes, dextra Tigris laeva Eulseus." (lib. vi. c. 27). Vincent 
has already shown, that the Sinus Mesanius of Ptolemy 
was undoubtedly the channel which led from the mouth 
of the river at Teredon, by the island of Mucan to the 
ancient Gerrha, It was in consequence of his being mis- 


led by the position of this gulf, that D'Anville placed 
Mesene on the west side of the Shat el Arab, considering 
it as Dauaslr of Niebuhr, while he puts the fort of Spasinus, 
which is expressly described as being in Mesene, to the 
east of the Shat el Arab. Pliny speaks of " Circa Apa- 
meam Mesenes oppidum ;" and in another place of the 
Tigris, " Seleuciam petit Mesenem perfundens." Cella- 
rius, on the authority of Josephus and of Stephanus, has 
no hesitation in fixing Mesene at the mouth of the Tigris, 
and Ammianus Marcellinus (lib. xxiv. p. 399) evidently 
considers Mesene as a tract neighbouring the sea. From 
all these authorities we ascertain, that the Mesene of 
antiquity comprised all those marshy and half-islanded 
tracts which were at that period comprised between Tigris 
and the sea, below the Chaldsean lake ; including the 
territories of Apamea, or Kumah, of Hawisah, and of 
Spasinus Charax, or of Mo'ammerah. This latter district, 
extending between the Shat el Arab and the Bahamshir, 
is in the present day called Musah, or Mahersi, corre- 
sponding with the bay of Mahruin, which is the same as 
the Sinus Pelodes and Steloas of Ptolemy and of Marcian. 
The Orientals read Musah for Moses, and the name of 
the prophet was too current in the East, that we should 
be surprised at finding it here. Ptolemy's Moseus is the 
Bahamshfr which Vincent mistook for the Karun. 
Cellarius said, " Moseus intervenit Tigrim et Eulaeum" 
(lib. iii. p. 19.) 

Spasinus Charax. — Vincent read STraa-cvov Xayfia, 
Spasinus being " in colle manu facta." Pliny (lib. vi. c. 
27); but Cellarius, vol. ii., 448, reads to Toa-irao'tvov. 
D'Anville calls it, " una bande de terra isolea par un 


canal," which appears to correspond precisely with what 
it must have Jbeen in that time. It appears from Pliny, 
(lib. vi. c. 27,) " Prius fuit a littore stadius 10 et mari- 
timum etiam ipsa inde portum habuit, juba vero prodente 
1 mill. pass, hunc abesse a littore cxx. mil. legati arabum 
nostrique negotiatores qui inde venere affirmant." There 
is nothing in the physical configuration and geological 
relation of Charax which would militate against the first 
statement made in the preceding, of its having been, in 
the time of Alexander, only 1693 yards, or scarcely a 
mile, from the sea. On the contrary, the statement 
coincides with every other circumstance which has been 
brought to illustrate the former condition of Delta of 
Susiana. Nearchus must have sailed near it in crossing 
to Diridotis. It was in fact the then Delta of the rivers 
Tigris and Karnn. If in Juba's time it was already 50 
Roman miles from the sea, it had already attained its 
greatest distance, for it is not at the present day more 
than 47 English miles. With regard to his statement, 
that in his own day it was 120 miles from the sea, it is 
impossible not to feel, that it would be exorbitant to 
demand that a writer who has recorded so many errors 
and superstitions in natuml history, should always be 
correct in his geography. 

^Ahaddn and Al Shasiyahat. — ^The progressive emer- 
gence of the territory of Mesene, now Mahersf, is con- 
tained in a note of Marcian's, who says, " near this part 
(Spasini Charax) of Susiana, lies an island called Appha- 
dana, which some attribute to Arabia." This already 
shows an emergence to have taken place between the 
time of Alexander and of Marcian. The connexion of 


tliis island with the main land can be traced. Al Edrissi 
says (p. 121), " 'Abadan is a small fort, situated near the 
sea, and on the western bank of Tigris, in a part where 
that river particularly spreads itself over the land." The 
only error here is, that it ought to be eastern bank ; 
'Abadan still exists, but on the eastern bank of the Shat 
el Arab. The same author says, " six miles below 
'Abadan lies Al Shaslyabat, which signifies a stage raised 
upon piles in the sea, where there is a watch kept, and 
those who are appointed for that service repair to the 
stage in boats." Al Shaslyabat is now at a distance from 
the sea ; but that distance, amounting to several miles, 
has not been well determined. 

Voyage of Nearchus — One of the most valuable 
records of ancient time, by which we can form an idea of 
the former condition of the Delta of Euphrates, and of 
Susiana, is undoubtedly the narrative left to us by Arrian 
of the voyage of Nearchus. This record contains a testi- 
mony of a change in the configuration of the soil, and of 
the hydrographical relations of the great rivers of Chalda^a 
and Susiana; as irrefragable as that contained in the 
physical indices of the soil itself. 

Standard of Measurement — The greatest difficulty 
which occurs in the way of a correct interpretation of the 
Macedonian navigator, is that which exists in determining 
the value of the stadium used in the narrative, more 
especially as transmitted to us by Arrian. Two able 
commentators, Dr. Vincent and D'Anville, have used the 
small Aristotelian stade, Rennell has adopted the Greek 
Itinerary stadium, and Dr. Falconer the Greek Olympic. 



From many various comparisons made between the actual 
distance of known positions, and the distance as recorded 
by Nearchus, I have been led to adopt the same as 
Mjgor Rennell. 

Navigation of the Delta. — ^The first point which will 
occupy our attention is the navigation from the Arosis, 
uniformly recognised as the Oroatis and Indiyan, across 
the Delta of Susiana to Teredon or Diridotis. The 
following table will express the distances, according to 
the various standards of measurement : — 

i \ 

Stades. 1 Olympic. Itinerary. 


From Arosis to Kataderbis 
From Kata. to Night Station 
From Station to Diridotis 












Margastaiia. — Nearchus sailed from the Arosis, and 
after a passage of 500 stades, the fleet came to an anchor 
at the mouth of a lake rather than an harbour, where 
there was an abundance of fish. The place was called 
Kataderbis, and an island which lay at its mouth 

The actual distance from the mouth of the Indiyan 
River to tlie island of Bunah, according to the survey of 
Lieuts. Brucks and Haines, is 22 miles, so that all 
the values given above to the stadium, will carry the 
navigator beyond the island, which at present exists 
at the mouth of the bay of Deri Bunah, and which has 
been generally looked upon as the Margastana of Near- 


chus ; while, if we take either the Olympic or Itinerary 
value, we shall bring the navigator upon the land now 
occupied by the country of the Ka'b Arabs, and desig- 
nated as Dorakstan, to which Margastan bears a remote 
resemblance. Dorakstan is still annually flooded, and is 
navigated over in boats during a great part of the year. 

Stake Bay^ Sinus Pelodes^ Sinzcs Steloas, — On quitting 
Kataderbis, they sailed, as soon as it was light, and 
forming a line, by single ships, each followed in order, 
without deviating to the right or left, through a channel 
marked out with stakes, in the same manner as the 
passage between Leukas and Acamania in Greece. 
Through this passage Nearchus conducted his fleet 600 
stadia, and then came to an anchor, without being able 
to approach the shore. 

That portion of the Gulf which extends between the 
Khor Musah and the Bahamshir, is at the present day 
occupied by the great bank called the Meidan Alah ; but 
there is no further reason for assuming that Nearchus 
navigated across the Meidan Alah to the mouth of the 
river Euphrates, than that in the present day he would 
have to follow such a course. There is no channel, nor 
could there ever have been one marked out by stakes on 
the Meidan Alah. Further, the distance from Dor^stan 
to the Shat el Arab, or even from Bunah Derf, is so 
small, that 600 stadia, in every standard, would have 
brought the boats into deep water, which was not the 
case ; wherefore the fleet must have taken a diagonal or 
north-west course across the country, which now forms 
part of Dorakstan and Mahersl, and which we have 
previously recognised as the stake bay of Marcian, the 


mud bay of Ptolemy, and the bay marked out by stakes 
of Nearchus. This district is now occupied by the 
marshes and inlet, at the mouth of the Kanin el 'Amah, 
and the embouchure of the Bahamshir. 

Tei'edon or Diridotis. — From this anchorage, the 
fleet weighed in the night, after allowing a short respite 
from fatigue; but they had no longer a shoal to cross, 
they sailed in deep water all night and the following day, 
till past noon, when they finished their course at Diri- 
dotis, a village at the mouth of the Euphrates. The 
distance accomplished was 900 stadia. 

The distance of the Babylonian mound, called Jebel 
Sinam, which rises over the plain of the Zobeir Arabs, 
from the Charax Spasinus, may be valued at up- 
wards of 30 miles, which leaves a distance of 56 miles 
for the navigation across Mesene to Dorakstan, a distance 
which in a straight line would carry the fleet to the bay 
of Bunah Deri ; and the excess must therefore be sought 
for in the sinuosities of the then existing coasts, if Diri- 
dotis existed at the point it is placed by some; viz., at the 
mouth of the Khor Abdullah, the excess would be still 
greater by any standard that is adopted. 

It so happens that there are two other numerical 
statements for ascertaining the position of Diridotis. We 
learn from Strabo (lib. xvi. p. 766), that " Gerrha was 
2400 stadia (230*^) along the coast from the mouth of the 
Euphrates, and 200 stades in the interior." The i-uins of 
this city are now approximatively known to lie near El 
Katif, on the Persian Gulf, a distance of about 180 miles 
from the Khor Abdullah, or supposed ancient mouth of 
Euphrates or Pallacopas ; and whicji >voyld still leave a 


surplus of 50 miles, pointing to the necessity of seeking 
for the position of Teredon, considerably to the north of 
the present embouchure of Euphrates, or of the Khor 
Abdullah, and at or near the site of the Jebel Sinam. 

Secondly, the Macedonian navigator reckoned it 3300 
stadia from the mouth of the river Euphrates to Babylon. 
The distance of Zobeir from Babylon may be estimated 
at 310 miles, and that of the mound to which we would 
attach the Babylonian ruin of Teredon, about 10 miles 
further. The distance given by Nearchus, calculated 
upon the Olympic stade, would give 375 miles, or nearly 
the distance of the Khor Abdullah; upon the Itinerary, 
320, the distance of Jebel Sinam ; and by the small 
Aristotelian, 207 miles, or less than that distance. It is 
very evident then, from the same standard that has been 
used before, that the approximation effected between the 
estimated actual distance, and that given by Nearchus, 
is as close as could be expected, and lends its corrobora- 
tive testimony, with the position of Gerrha, for determining 
the Jebel Sinam to be at or upon the ancient site of 
Teredon or Diridotis. 

The learned Dr. Vincent has preserved a valuable 
fragment of history from Abydenus, ScaL Emend. Temp- 
Frag, p. 13, and Eusebius apud Grotium lib. iii. c. 16, 
which relates that Teredon was founded by Nebuchad- 
nezzar, as a fortress against the Arabs, and Heeren sup- 
poses that it afterwards became a Phoenician colony The 

relation of Diridotis with Hid Dekel or Dudath ^XJLd& 
of Moses, so variously corrupted Diglidoth, Diglito (Pliny), 
Diglath (Josephus), the Oriental Dejela, from whence the 
Greeks made Deger and Teger, and the Romans Tigris, is 
important; as the interchange of forms in Diridotis or 


Diglidotis, and Teredon or Tenedon, is constant, and 
accords with the genius of the languages in which they 
were first adopted. 

Tavemier had first the boldness to distinguish the 
modern Zobei'r as the site of the Chaldseo-Babylonian 
Teredon : this he evidently obtained from the Sabseans, 
as he gives no reason for his statement. The identity 
established between the same site and the Tschabde or 
Tschwabde of Niebuhr, and of Tschabde with 'Abadan, is 
incorrect. The site of the Tschabde of Niebuhr is now 
occupied by the village of Fueh, where 1 sought in vain 
for ancient ruins. Vincent says in the text (vol. i. p. 
437), that the channel which passes by Zobelr is the 
Euphrates of Strabo and Arrian ; and in notes to p. 436 
he confounds it as the continuation of the Ob61eh of Abu- 
el-Fedah, or the canal of New Basrah. Vincent also 
supposed Jebel Sinam to be at Zobeir ; it is three hours 
from it. D'Anville identified the same Babylonian mound 
with Orchoe. The natives preserve the tradition of the 
first and most ancient Basrah being at Jebel Sinam ; the 
second (to which Ayishah was taken prisoner), near the 
present Zobeir (and the site of which, attested by existing 
monuments, was ingeniously determined by Niebuhr by 
a reference to the Mohammedan saints buried there) ; 
and lastly, the present Basrah founded by Omar. 

Dr. Vincent and D'Anville consider the small Aristo- 
telian stade as that used by Nearchus, and yet place 
Teredon at the head of the present Kh6r Abdullah, or 
about 400 miles from Babylon, instead of the 207 which 
would result from calculations founded on that stade. 
Mr. Beke, taking the 207, has, on the other hand, been 
led to suppose, that there has been, since the days of 


Nearchus (b.c. 325), an actual increase of land, which, in 
a straight line, may be taken as about three-fourths of the 
measurements along the course of the river, or of 113 
miles, during a period of 2160 years/ 

As it is, in great part, a question of the value of the 
stadium, the statement of Pliny, which is acknowledgedly 
founded upon that of Nearchus, as well as that of Onesi- 
critus, — " Eufraten navigari Babylonem e Persico Mari 
ccccxi M. pass.," — ^might be advanced as a corroborative 
proof of the standard used on the present occasion ; and 
which (411 Roman miles being equal to about 388 
English) would give an excess of the maximum equal to 
the excess of the Olympic stade over that of Xenophon 
and Strabo. If the distance given is calculated upon the 
Olympic stadium of 600 feet of Dr. Falconer, the result 
would be 375 miles. If the quantities of 604 used by 
D'Anville, 606 by Bishop Horsley, or 625 of others, are 
taken, the excess will be still greater. The value given 
by Jomard to the Olympic stade, founded upon the 
measurement of the Pyramids, as astronomical monuments, 
is of only 598 feet ; and it would require the maximum of 
these results, to bring the site of Teredon as low as the 
Khor Abdullah*. It cannot be objected too strongly to 
the reconciliation of apparent discrepancies in the works 
of ancient writers by varying the standard of measure- 
ment, a case that can never be permitted, but in esta- 
blishing correctly at the outset the value of the standard 
used by each different author ; no pains or trouble ought 
to be spared ; and such investigations have been one of 

* The distance of Basrah to Babylon, by the windings of the river, 
which Pliny's statement, if not founded upon that of Nearchus, would 
appear to include, is equal to 348 miles. 


the prominent causes of the progress given to historical 
geography in modern times. 

Lake ofSusiana. — " While Nearchus lay at anchor, 
according to his historian, at the mouth of the Euphrates, 
intelligence was received that Alexander was on his march 
to Susa ; he determined, therefore, to return back, and 
then, by pursuing his course up the Pasitigris, to join 

him in the neighbourhood of the capital." 

" Wherefore, passing along the coast, and keeping the 
country of Susa on their left hand, they passed through 
the lake by which the Tigris empties itself." 

We have here a distinct Pasitigris from that of Pliny, 
and which can only be one of the rivers flowing from the 
neighbourhood of Susa. From the relation in which the 
Karun stands in regard to Jebel Si nam, or Teredon, 
it is evident that, to reach that river, they must, as is 
related, retrace their steps, which, however, they only did 
for a short distance, soon crossing a lake, which they 
passed through, keeping Susiana on their left hand. This 
can only apply itself to a sheet of water contained be- 
tween the district of Apamea and that of Charax, or 

There are other authorities for the existence of this 
lake besides Nearchus. Polycletus asserts that the 
Eulaeus, the Choaspes, and the Tigris, empty themselves into 
a lake. In the same manner Strabo (lib. xv. p. 729), says 
that all the interval between the coast of Arabia at Diri- 
dotis, and the extreme of the coast of Susiana, is occupied 
by a lake which receives the Tigris; and lastly, Pliny 
speaks (lib. vi. c. 23), of the " Lacus quem faciunt Eulaeus 
et Tigris juxta Characem." Nothing can be more satis- 


factory; and we have observed in the physical descrip- 
tions, that this territory is still the seat of annual inun- 

Hawdzy or Aginis. — ^The distance from the lake to 
the mouth of the river itself, according to Nearchus, was 
600 stades ; the river itself here evidently means that 
which the navigator was designing to sail, and not Tigris, 
last alluded to ; if so, the distance given of 600 stades 
will carry the navigator across the country nearly to the 
site of Hawaz. " And at the riven'' says the narrator, 
" is Aginis, a village of Susiana, which is 500 stadia, or 
48 miles, from Susa, which corresponds with the position 
of Hawaz. Subsequently we find, that when Alexander 
was at Susa, the fleet was also there ; although the his- 
torians have not preserved any account of the journey. 
Hence it may be deduced, that there existed at that time 
a communication between the river of Sus and that of 
the Pasitigris or Kariin. 

Dr. Vincent, from a reading furnished to him by 
Schneider, in which it is rendered, " they passed in their 
course a lake," instead of "they passed through the 
lake," as it is given by Rooke and others, concludes that 
Nearchus has described the lake without going into it, 
and that he retraced his passage across the shoals, return- 
ing by the Lusbah river into the Pasitigris, which he 
thus identifies with the Jerahf. 

The points established by these topographical refe- 
rences, compared with the physical indices of the soil, 
have assisted me in determining, so far, the outline of the 
Sea of Oman, or Gulf of Persia, at the earliest times of 
authentic history, as to trace it from the territory of 



Ghorein, by Jebel Sinam or Teredon, Zobeir, Spasinus 
Charax, and the Vallum Pasini, in an undefined line 
across Dorakstan or Ka'ban, to the Arosis or Indiyan. 
The same relations have furnished evidence of the former 
existence of a lake, formed by the junction of the Tigris 
and the Choaspes or Euleeus, and extending from the 
neighbourhood of Diridotis to that of Aginis (Hawaz), 
and bounded to the north by the territory of Ampe, 
Aphl^, and Apamea, and to the south by that of Mesene 
and Charax. 

Progress of Alluvia. — The distance of Charax from 
the sea in Alexander's time, as recorded by Pliny, gives a 
rate of progress for the Susianic Delta of about 30 yards 
per annum. The positioning of Teredon ^at Jebel Sinam 
would give a rate of progress which would not much 
exceed that average, for the shore trended thence rather 
to the west of south ; and the intervening space of the 
Dauasir and the Mahersl were almost coevally taken from 
the domain of the waters, by the changes which took 
place in the hydrographical relations of the different 

If the same ratio of the riate of progress of the alluvia 
since the days of Alexander, be applied in a retrospective 
manner to the progress of the alluvia in times anterior to 
that, we should find that at earliest post-diluvian periods, 
or about 4200 years ago, these alluvia ought to have ex^ 
tended to within about 70 miles of the sea. 

Now, it has been seen by previous historical re- 
searches, that the foundation of Teredon dates from an 
early period of the Chaldaeo-Babylonian empire, and that 
Ampe, noticed by Herodotus, was also a site in nearly 


the same parallel of the most remote antiquity ; and con- 
necting these facts with what is known of the comparative 
geography of Mesene, the outline of coast obtained by 
this retrograde process corresponds, as nearly as can be 
obtained, with what would be deduced from historical 

It has been further shown, by physical, and historical, 
inquiries united ; that Chaldsea, which contained the city 
of Erech, coeval with Babel; the Gerah of Abraham, and 
the antique Ur or Orchoe, was evidently not a country 
of post-Babylonian alluvia; and hence all circumstances 
unite in lending their testimony to the same great facts 
of the antique existence of the alluvia of Babylonia, while 
the rate of the progress of the same alluvia, approxima- 
tively obtained, is further illustrated by the more modem 
rate of advance, since the building of 'Abadan and Al 

N 2 


Rivers op Susiana. 

The rivers which may be considered as forming the 
Hydrographical Basin of Khusistan are, the Kerah, the 
Ab-i-Zal, the Karun, the Jerahi, and the Indiyan. 

The Kefi'dh. — ^The Kerah, Ki^rki, Kerkhah, and Karasu, 
is said by Sir John Macdonald Kinneir to originate from the 
province of Ardilan in Irak Ajemi. The various tributa- 
ries unite on the plains of Khawah and Alister, a little 
below Khurrimabad, to form the Kerah which flows by 
H6r-Kub, to the parallel of Sus, past which it passes one 
day's journey to the west, receiving there the Ab-i-Zal, 
which flows immediately by the site of Sus. The river 
then flows onwards towards Hawisah, parting three miles 
above that town with a canal called the Nahr Josah. The 
main channel is then called the Hawisah, till it loses 
a second stream, called the Abu Jamti, which also flows, 
like the Nahr Josah, into the marshes called Samidah 
and Samarkah, which lie between the Kerah and the 
Tigris, and are inhabited by the Beni Lam Arabs. The 
main channel, after losing the Abu Jamu, is designated 
as the Saheb or Suab, to its embouchure into the Shat el 
Arab, only a few miles below the junction of Euphrates 
and Tigris. 

The Ab'i'Zdl. — ^The existence of a tributary to the 
Kerali flowing past the ruins of Susa, was made known to 
us by the natives on the Karun, but it is to Major Raw- 
linson that we are indebted for the information that this 
tributary is the Ab-i-Zal of Orientalists. 


The Shapur, — The Shapur, or Shawur, as it is pro- 
nounced by the Arabs, was first made known to us by a 
native of Felahiyah, or Dorak, as flowing near Sus, and 
being in part lost in marshes, while the remainder found 
its way into the Ab-i-Diz. From information subsequently 
obtained at Hawaz, we learnt that this river emptied itself 
formerly into the Karun. At Bund-i-Kil we also learnt 
that it had an outlet into the river Diz, and the same 
thing was delineated for us in chalk, by an intelligent pilot 
who accompanied the steamer Euphrates on her journey up 
the Karun to Hawaz. The fact of the existence of this 
river was derived from too great a variety of sources to 
admit of any doubt, although the misbehaviour of the 
Arabs at Bund-i-Kil prevented our personal exploration of 
its course. This difficulty did not exist at Hawaz, where 
we were successful in tracing its bed into the Karun 
immediately below the last ledge of rocks. Colonel 
Chesney also met with several streams of water between 
the canal of Shuster and the Ab-i-Diz, flowing to the 

It would appear, from information derived from the 
natives, that while the tomb of Daniel, and part of the 
ruins of Susa, are to the east of the Ab-i-Zal, the 
other portions are to the west of it. There is a passage 
in Daniel (viii. 16), which has an obvious reference 
to this circumstance, when the prophet says, " between 
the Ulai," which is rendered in the Vulgate, " between 
the banks," a thing impossible. Strabo (lib. xv. p. 729) 
also says, ^* the rivers which pass by Susa," a passage which 
Gosselin explains as having reference to the Khoaspes and 
Eulseus as different streams. 


The Ab-i-Diz. — ^The Ab-i-Diz, or river of Dfz, is said 
to have its source on the western side of the Persian 
Apennines, from whence the united tributaries flow by 
Dizful, where is a bridge of 32 arches, (or 350 yards, 
Chesney,) constructed by Shapur Zulectaf, who also built 
those of Shuster and of Bhajian, and empties itself into 
the Kerah west of Susa. 

The jBTon^w.— -The Kariin has its sources in the Bakh- 
tiyari mountains. After receiving several tributaries, it 
flows to the west of Shuster, giving off, previously to its 
arrival there, two canals to the west, which apparently go 
to form the Shawur or Shapur river, which Ibn Haukal 
crossed at Jund-i-Shapur, one day's journey west, and 
probably lost by irrigation at certain seasons, for Colonel 
Chesney met in the same neighbourhood with streams of 
small dimensions. To the east are given off four canals, 
which unite to form the Ab-i-Shuster, the Ab-i-Gurgur, 
Shatite, or Mushikran, for they appear to be the same. 

Twenty miles below Shuster the Karun receives back 
the'waters of the canal, which is, in fact, now the real bed 
of the river, and also the waters of the river of Hassman- 
niyah, which flows ten miles to the south of Shuster. The 
junction takes place at Bund-i-Kil, the Benhoiidel of the 
Arabs, which Hammer erroneously considered as the Deir- 
i«Hazikil, the convent of Ezekiel of Baku, which tradition 
places at Shushan. 

From Bund-i-Kil the united waters flow in nearly a 
straight line to south 10'' west, by the town of Wais, 
where the river begins to assume a tortuous direction 
onwards to Hawaz. At this place the bed of the river is 
crossed by seven ledges of sandstone rock, over which 


the water falls, Laving a depth of scarcely more than 18 
inches at extreme low water, but having from three to 
four feet during the season of flood. The rocks dip at an 
angle of 22° to the north, and cross the river in a direction 
from N. 85 W. to S. 85 E. Below the last ridg^e is an 
islet, and opposite to it a river bay, beyond which was the 
ancient bed of the Shawur. A blind or dam, constructed 
of stones cemented by mortar, crossed the river in a 
diagonal direction a little above. Several channels are cut 
through a ledge of rock, about 20 feet high, which allowed 
tlie obstructed waters to flow into a canal, which was 
joined by another passing the city under a bridge of two 
arches, the remains of which are still extant. The course 
of the canal, as continued after irrigating the soil, is 
traceable as far as to Ghuraibah on the Jer^hf . 

Fourteen miles below Hawaz, by the river, but scarcely 
eight by land, the Karun receives, in the season of high 
waters, a contribution from the Hawisah or Kerah river, 
by a canal called the Nahr el Maktuah, or " cut river." 

At the untenanted village of Sablah, or Samalyah, is 
an ancient bed of the river called Kartin el 'Amah*, the 
blind or filled up, Karun. It now only contains the waters 
of high tide and of flood. About a mile and a half from 
the actual Karun it receives the waters of the Ka'ban 
canal, which are supplied by the Dorak branch of the 
Jerahi. This canal, although very narrow, is navigated 
by boats. 

The Karun flows onwards by Kisbar, amid villages 
and date groves, fourteen miles ; to where it divides into 
two channels, one of which flows past Mo'ammerfih and 

* Mr. Benouard queries Amdh, the wanderer. 


old Ilaffar fort, into the Sliat el Arab. This channel is 
little more than a mile in length ; the other constitutes 
the Bahamshir, a channel extending to the Gulf, and 
partaking of the characters of a river, and of an inlet of 
the sea. 

The JerdhL — The Jerahi originates from several 
rivers, which flow from the Bakhtiyari mountains. The 
united streams flow past Ghura'ibah in the longitude of 
Hawaz, into the territory of the Sheikh of Ka'b. Here 
the waters begin to be drained by numerous canals, which 
take their departure from the right bank, while the main 
.river flows onwards to Asayl, within about eight miles 
of Dorak, or Felahiyah, and where the waters flowing 
from the east sweep round to the south-east. From this 
convexity six various canals take their departure: the 
most southerly loses itself in rice-grounds and marshes. 
The next unites with two other canals, after their waters 
have been much diminished by irrigation, to form the 
canal of Dorak. The others lose themselves in the 
marshes of the same place, called Hor Dorak. The sixth, 
or most northerly, divides into two branches, forming 
seven canals in all. On these various canals are many 
villages surrounded by date-trees, the inhabitants culti- 
vating rice and grain, and pasturing cattle. The Jerahi, 
in its continuation, loses itself in marshes, from which 
part of the waters are said to reunite, to form the Lusbah 
river, which empties itself into the Gulf. 

The Dorak canal flowing past Felahfyah, sends off* a 
canal of irrigation at about a mile from the town, while 
the main channel, after losing itself partly in marshes, 
continues its course as previously mentioned, into the 


Karun el 'Amah, by which it empties itself into the 

Questions in Comparative Geography, — Few inquiries 
in historical geography have presented greater diversity 
in their results, than those which affect the reconciliation 
of what is known to the moderns, with what has been 
handed down to us by the ancients, concerning the rivers 
of Susiana. The identity of Stis and Susa has been 
supported by Rennell, Ousely, Gosselin, Barbie de Bocage, 
Kinneir, and Hoeck, while the identity of Shuster ahd 
Susal has had for advocates D'Herbelot, D'Anville, Vin- 
cent, and Mannert ; and still more lately, we have had 
the excellent memoir of Mr. Von Hammer, upon the same 
subject, and a notice in the Journal of the Royal Geo- 
graphical Society, by Mr. Long, founded upon the 
researches of Colonel Chesney. 

Tlie question is one of high interest, for not only 
does it involve the site of one of the most celebrated 
cities of antiquity, but it forms an integral part of the 
study of the progress of the alluvia in those districts, and 
of the changes which have taken place in the configura- 
tion of the land since the earliest periods of recorded 

Teredon. — The Babylonian mound of Jebel Sinam, 
near Zobeir, has been adopted as the site of the Teredon 
of Nebuchadnezzar, and the Diridotis of Nearchus, from 
the fact that the Nahr Saleh, or canal of ZobeYr, which 
communicated with the Khor Abdullah, could never have 
contained the body of the waters of the Euphrates ; from 
the fact that Colonel Chesney met with the bed of the 


PallacopaSy pursuing the route where it might be ex- 
pected, from Urchoe towards Jebel Sinam; from the 
recorded distances of Teredon from Babylon and Gerrha, 
and from the local tradition of the Jebel Sinam being an 
older port than Zobe'ir, or old Basrah, which was anterior 
to the modem Basrah. 

Lake of Susiana. — From Zobeir to the river Kerah, 
and eastwards by Mo'ammerah, for a considerable distance 
inland, the country north of the Karun, as well as that 
to the south of it, is the seat of extensive and prolonged 
inundations. This country was probably formerly occu- 
pied by the lake by which Nearchus proceeded from 
Diridotis, when, according to his historian, " passing 
along the coast, and keeping the country of Susa on their 
left hand, they passed throjigh the lake by which the 
Tigris empties itself." There are other authorities for 
the existence of this lake besides Nearchus. Polycletus 
asserts, that the Euteus, the Khoaspes, and the Tigris, 
emi)ty themselves into a lake. In the same manner 
Btrabo (lib. xv., p. 729,) says, that all the interval between 
the coast of Arabia at Diridotis, and the extreme of the 
coast of Susiana, is occupied by a lake or marsh {Xifivrj) 
which receives the Tigris. And, lastly, Pliny speaks 
(lib. vi., c. 23,) of the " Lacus quem faciunt Eulseus et 
Tigris juxta Characem." This lake of Susiana must 
not be confounded with the Chaldaean lake, which was to 
the north of it. 

Aginis. — ^The distance, from the lake to the mouth 
of the river itself, according to Nearchus, was 600 stades : 
" the river itself," here evidently means that which the 


navigator was designing to sail up, and not the Tigris, 
although the last alluded to in the text. If so, the 
distance given of 600 stades, using the Greek Itinerary, 
as adopted by Major Rennell, will carry the navigator 
across the country to the site of Hawaz. And at the 
river, says the narrator, is Aginis, " a village of Susians," 
,which is 500 stadia, or 48 miles from Susa, corresponding 
with what may be supposed to be the actual distance of 
Hawaz from Sus. Subsequently we find that when 
Alexander was at Susa,. the fleet was also there, although 
the historians have not preserved any account of the 
journey. It is also recorded, that at Aginis there were 
falls or impediments on the river, — impediments which, 
in the present day, are both natural and artificial. 

Junction of Kerdh and Karun — Having admitted 
these preliminaries, I shall advert in a few words to the 
Kerah. According to the Djihan Numa, this river 
flowed into the Karun previous to the latter joining the 
Shat el Arab*. Gosselin says the same thing in his notes 
to the Paris edition of Strabo (1819); and the Euphrates 
Expedition found a communication still existing, during 
the season of flood, between the two rivers. It is evident, 
then, that we have here a means of explaining the 
descent made by Alexander of the Eulseus to the sea 
direct, although the present line of junction is only a 
modern condition of the river, which originated subse- 
quently to the existence of a lake, and into which, on the 
authority of Polycletus and others, the Khoaspes or Kerah 
poured its waters. 

* Arab is properly 'Arab, but is too common to admit of a new 


G^jules. — Otter (vol. ii., p. 5L) first noticed that Hor- 
Kub* was oa the Gyndes. Ibn Haukal makes the town 
one merhilah or caravan day's joomey firom Sus, and a 
similar distance beyond is Teib. If Hor-Kub is on the 
Kerah, which is one day's journey Irom Siis, it is a proof 
that it is the Ab-4-ZaJ, and not the Kerah, which flows 
past that city, although Kinneir does not mention such. Os 
river ; but Colonel Chesney, by his ascent of the Shuster 
river, established the ikct that the western branch at 
Bund-i-Kil is not the river flowing firom SuSy or the 
AI>4-ZaI, as c^enerallv desismated, and which, like D'An- 
ville and Rennell, he supposed to empty itself into the 

It is well known that Herodotus (Clio^ lib. i., 89^) 
relates that Cyrus, in leading his army against Labynetnsy 
son of Nitocrisf, lost one of the consecrated horses in the 
Gyndes or Kerah, which he was accordingly led to reduce 
by a number of canals firom exasperation, according to 
the historian ; but, as Larcher has remarkeil, it might 
have been firom prudence — exasperation does not endure 
a whole summer. Rennell, who considers the Kerah 
as the BLhoaspesy is necessitates! to convert the 
Diyalah into the Gyndes^ a system of which Vincent has 
already pointed out the difficulties; for if Cyrus came 
firom Ecbatana, it was not necessary to cross the Diyalah, 
and if firom Susa, it was also out of the way. Others 

* Hdr, marshes; Khor, cm Mtst or pasmge of the sea. 

t Labynetus is identified hj Larcher with Xebuchadiiezzar, a name 
supposed by Hardoninns (Chron. Teteria Testamenti), to be common, 
to the kings of the Chaldaeo-Babylonian monarchy, like Pharaoh to 
the Egyptians, and Syennesis to the Syrians. A better authority^ 
Heezen, identifies him with. Nabonodins, the Chalderan BeLshaasar. 


have sought for the Gyndes in the Merideli, which they 
have made a tributary to the Kerah, whereas it is a fluent 
into the Diyalah, the true position of which may be seen 
in the late work of Mr. Rich, on Nineveh and the Tigris. 
Voltaire (Art. Babel, " Encyclopedie,") is witty at the 
expense of the whole transaction: " What should we say," 
he inquires, " of JSIezerai, had he related that Charle- 
magne had divided the Rhine into 360 canals?" The 
orientals, in the same language of exaggeration as Seneca 
(de Ira, lib. iii. cxxi.) has used towards Cyrus, assert that 
the Jesayir is pierced by 300 canals. 

Identity of Khodspes and Eidceus. — ^The identity of 
the Khoaspes and the Eulseus is demonstrated by the 
positioning of Susa, which the Scriptures place on the 
Ulai ; Arrian and Pliny on the Eulaeus ; and Herodotus, 
Strabo, and Quintus Curtius, on the Khoaspes. The con- 
nexion of the Khoaspes and the Eulaeus with the Ab-i- 
Zal must depend upon the identity of Sus and Susa, or 
Shushan, and a more general evidence of an accumulated 
geographical and hydrographical detail. 

Position of Sicsa. — ^The principal arguments for the 
identity of Sus and Susa have been derived from the 
similarity of name; the existence of extensive and charac- 
teristic ruins, while Shuster has none ; the legend of the 
prophet Daniel, whose tomb is at Sus ; and the necessity 
of adopting a site that is upon a river which comes from 
Media; to which has been objected, in favour of the 
identity of Susa and Shuster, that the name of Shuster 
approaches as near to Shushan as that of Sus does. In- 
dependently of the little value of such an argument, it 


has been neglected to mention that Shuster is the dimi- 
nutive of Sus or Shus, having at an early period of its 
history been designated as the Small Sus, to which city 
it ultimately succeeded, and outstripped in population 
and in power. Vincent lays much stress upon the supe- 
rior antiquity given by Oriental writers to . Shuster, but 
it is always their custom to honour existing capitals, 
which they do without always preserving that regard for 
truth which is so essential in history. In the present 
case, to say that Shuster was founded by Hushenk imme- 
diately after the flood, possesses the same historical value 
as the statement made by Strabo, of the building of Susa 
by Tithonus, son of Memnon. The argument, which is 
founded upon the closer analogy of the name of the 
province Susiana with Shushan, is as valueless as the ana- 
logy of its modem name with the Kissei, Kussei, and 
Kossei of the Greeks, for Sus or Shus was as much in 
Susiana as Shuster, and more closely connected with the 
province of Susiana than the Kossei are with Khusistan ; 
for the ancients considered only- the tribes to the west of 
the Pasitigris as the Kussii or Susians, and those to the 
east as Uxii or Uxians. The statement of Ibn Haukal, 
that there is not in all Khusistan any mountain or sand 
(if the translation is correctly given), except at Shiister, 
Jund-i-Shapur, and Aidej, is extremely erroneous; for 
where there is not rock, as at Hawaz, Hawisah, Bam, 
Hormuz, &c., there is almost generally sand ; at all events, 
no argument can be founded on such slender data. The 
learned Dr. Vincent, who comments upbn Nearchus, 
thinks that, as far as regards the legendary tradition of 
the prophet Daniel's tomb, little more respect is due to 
it than to the legends of the Church of Rome. Von 


Hammer has lately advanced upon this subject what he 
considered as a triumphant argument, a passage from 
'Ahmed of Sus, which states, that formerly the tomb of 
Daniel was at Shuster, and that it was on the occasion of 
a great famine, which desolated Sus, that it was removed 
there. This may be compared for authenticity with the 
monkish legend of the transposition of the domicile of 
the Virgin Mary from Jerusalem to Ravenna; and if 
Oriental writers were of any avail, when legends are con- 
cerned, the assertion made in the Djihan Numa, that the 
tomb has existed at Sus since the days of Nebuchad- 
nezzar, might be advanced as contradictory evidence. 
The argument, that the Kerah cannot be the Susa river 
because it empties itself into the Shat el Arab, only 
applies itself to the present condition of that river. Von 
Hammer acknowledges that this was his chief reason for 
subscribing to that view which supports the identity of 
Susa and Shuster. 

Identity of EvJkEUS and Ab-i-Zdl. — ^In comparing the 
Ab-i-Zal with the Khoaspes and the Eulseus, it is well to 
mention that Herodotus, on the authority of Aristagoras, 
says that the Khoaspes must be crossed to arrive at Susa, 
and that Quintus Curtius (lib. i. p. 323) says, in the same 
manner, that Alexander passed the Eulaeus on his road 
to Susa. This is important, for although Strabo only 
says (lib. xv. p. 728), that Susa lies inland upon the 
Khoaspes, it is evident, from the above, that it was on 
the eastern side of the river, which it is of the Kerah, 
and in part of the Ab-i-Zal, to the present day. 

It is related by Herodotus, Strabo, and Quintus 
Curtius, of the Kiioaspes, and the same thing is told by 


the Scriptures of the* Ulai, and by Arrian and Pliny of 
the Euheus, that the waters of these rivers are so pure 
and salutary, that the kings of Persia would drink no 

There Sasa, by Choaspes' amber stream. 
The drink of none but kings. 

Upon which Jortin critically remarks that it is not proved, 
that none but kings drank it ; and another commentator 
discusses the subject at length, adducing fifteen autho- 
rities against the poet. Such captiousness about an ex- 
pression, which is perhaps only a licence, has more of 
vanity or of love of detraction in it, than of literary hu- 
manity. Milton, however, meets with support in Aga- 
thocles, who avers that there is in Persia a river called 
" Golden," that it consists of 70 streams, that none drink 
of it except the king and his eldest son, and that if any 
person does, death is the punishment. What I was 
anxious however to show was, that the fame of the purity 
and excellence of the waters of the Karun is also pro- 
verbial among Turks, Arabs, and Persians, to the present 
day, and that as the Ab-i-Zal flowed into it, the identity, 
so far as regards this silk-wove argument, is unimpeach- 
able. Von Hammer has also recorded the virtues of the 
Shuster river, as derived from an Oriental MS., but an 
incorrect deduction is drawn from it of the identity of 
that river with the Khoaspes. 

Identity of EvIUbils and Pasitigris, — ^The union of the 
Euloeus and the Pasitigris is proved from a number of 
circumstances, but an important question presents itself, 
— by which of the two names was the resulting river 
designated? Von Hammer understands Arrian as im- 


plying that the Eulseus flowed into the Pasitigris, and 
that Alexander descended the former on his way to meet 
Nearchus, when the latter ascended the Pasitigris with 
his fleet; but I have been unable to get satisfactory 
evidence of this reading. Ptolemy puts the question out 
of all doubt, for his Eulseus, emptying itself into the sea 
between the Mosseus (Bahamshlr) and the Arosis or 
Indiyan, is the same as the Karun el 'x4mah. The his- 
torians of Alexander also make the Macedonian hero 
descend the Eulseus to the sea. The junction was, how- 
ever, effected by the lake of Susiana, and it is from this 
circumstance that Alexander is made to descend to the 
sea by the Eulseus, while Nearchus is made to ascend 
from the same by the Pasitigris. Of similar nature is 
the acceptation given by Strabo of the latter name, which, 
according to him, would mean "the union of all the 

Identity of Ah-i-Zdl and Ab-i-Diz. — ^The Ab-i-Diz, or 
river of Diz, has been identified with the Ab-i-Zal by 
Sheriff Iddin, who places Dizful on the river of that 
name. The Ab-i-Zal was regarded by Ibn Haukal (p. 74), 
T)y Abu-el-Fedah (Otter, ii. p. 55), and Petit de la Croix 
(" Hist, de Timur," t. ii. p. 168), as the river of Susiana, 
which received all the others, and most of the Oriental 
geographers regard it in the same light ; so that, while 
the Greeks esteemed the Khoaspes as the chief river of 
Susiana ; in the middle ages, the Ab-i-Zal usurped that 
pre-eminence, which, in the present day, is given to the 
Karun, not from superiority of size, but because it flows 
near the capital of the province. In a country of moral, 
as well as of physical, vicissitudes ; Susa on the Ab-i-Zal, 



Hawaz on the Pasitigris, and Shuster on the Kardn, 
have been successively the metropolitan cities. 

Identity of the Karun with the Kopratds. — ^That the 
Karun is identical with the Kopratas we have abundant 
proof from Strabo, who says, after the Khoaspes comes 
the Kopratas and the Pasitigris ; and there is a valuable 
passage in Arrian, which says that the Kopratas joins the 
Pasitigris before the confluence with the Eulaeus. 

The Pasitigris was also the second river *east in 
Alexander's journey against the Uxii; the Shawur and 
Shiitite, or Ab-i-Shuster, not existing in those days. 

According to Diodorus Siculus (lib. xix. c. 11), Eu- 
menes marched with his army in one day from Susa to 
the Pasitigris, which the same historian often negligently 
calls Tigris, and which he describes as emptying itself 
into the sea. The time occupied in this journey is in 
itself an unexceptionable proof that Susa was not at 
Shuster, for if so, the Pasitigris, being the second river 
in succession, must be sought for in the Jerahi, or the 
Indiyan, the former and the nearest being three days' 
journey ofi*. Alexander took four days, but Timur, who 
was more rapid in his military movements, was only three 
days. Ibn Haukal makes it three days' journey. 

When Antigonus left Susa, in pursuit of Eumenes, 
his army was. forced to march by night, and it encamped 
near the river (Ab-i-Zal), before sun-rise. From thence 
he came to the Kopratas (Karun), said to join the Pasi- 
tigris. Eumenes, having intelligence by his scouts of 
the enemies' designs, passed over the bridge of Pasitigris 
with 4000 foot and 1300 horse, and found about 3000 
foot and 300 horse of Antigonus' army, which had passed 


the Kopratas. These he suddenly set upon and routed. 
Antigonus, thus forced to retreat, and finding it im- 
possible to pass the river, marched back to the city of 
Badacaj situated on the river Ulai. This fragment of a 
campaign would be quite inexplicable on the supposition 
of the identity of Susa and Shtjster, of the Eulaeus and 
the Karun, and the Jerahi and the Pasitigris. 

The Persian geographer Sheriff Iddin relates, that 
Shapur threw a bund, or dam, called Shahdurvan, across 
the Karun, above Shtister, from whence four canals took 
their departure to the east, called Tchar Dank, or four 
ditches, and two to the west. The construction of the 
Shutite, or Ab-i-Korkur, which appears to have resulted 
from the junction of the four easterly canals is attributed 
by Otter (t. ii. p. 55), to Azad-ud-Dulet, and, as before 
said, it is not impossible that the two westerly formed 
the Shawur or Shapilr, crossed by Ibn Haukal at J6nd-i- 
Shapur. An identity might be established between the 
Shutite and Mushlkran of the Djihan Numa, which 
mentions it as the canal which goes from Shuster to 
Asker Mukrem. Shuster, according to Colonel Chesney, 
is upon the Mushlkran, while upon the eastern branch of 
the Karun, and ten miles east of Shuster, is the town of 
Hassmaniyah. Ibn Haukal says, that one may go from 
Asker Mukrem to Hawaz, a distance of eight para- 
sangas, by a river, on which, at the former place, is a 
great bridge. The appellation is here given to the 
Kar^n, which appears to have had a bridge, from very 
remote periods, immediately below the junction of the 
Shutite with the Karun, where ruins are still trace- 
able. Sheriff Iddin, in his relation of the expedition 
of Timur (t- ii, lib. iii. c. 22,) makes the Tatar conqueror 

o 2 


commence liis expedition from Khurrun'abad in March 
1403 or 1393, there being an error of ten years in the 
chronology of bis historian ; and in eleven days, he reached 
the bridge of Dizful, on the Ab-i-Zal. He crossed the 
Ab-i-Zal, on the 16th of March; the Tchar Dank or 
Shawur, on the 18th, when he commenced the siege of 
Shuster, which employed him till the 19th of April, on 
which day he passed the Du Dank, on his march to 
Persis. The other rivers which Timur passed, before he 
reached the Tab, are the Khoru-Khan-Kendi, the northern 
tributary to the Jerahi, on the 22d ; on the 23d the river 
of Ram Ormuz ; and the river Fei on the 24th. The 
town of Dfz is placed on the Ab-i-Zal, and there is only 
one difficulty in this record, the Tchar Dank and the 
Du Dank, have changed place with the position given to 
them in the Djihan Numa. 

Ibn Haukal has contributed a valuable fragment of 
geography in an Itinerary from Rhajiyan to Teib. 

Merhfleli, or camePs 
day journey. 

To Bazar on the river Fe'i 1 

Ram Ormuz on the Jerahf 2 

Shuster, on the Ab-i-Korkur 3 

Jund-i-Shapur, on the Shawur 1 

Sua on the Ab-i-Zal 1 

Hor Kub, on the Kerah 1 

Teib 1 

Identity of the Pasitigris with the Karun and Kerdh 
miited. — ^The Karun, considered as the gerent of most of 
the rivers of Susiana, in accordance with the feelings of 
the present day, as well as the records of history, yields 
precedence only to the Euphrates and the Tigris, for the 


rich territories which its waters fertilize ; and its extended 
navigability and numerous intercommunications, give to 
it a real importance, which is only detracted from, by the 
fierce cupidity of the robber dwellers on its banks. The 
policy of the general government, when one has been in 
existence, and of local chieftains, from the most remote 
times, has always been directed towards the same object, 
that of canal irrigation, and inter-communication, and 
these efforts have at times rendered the province a 
miniature Egypt. But how different the perfection 
attained in the flourishing days of Azad-ud-Dulet, when 
the Kerah communicated with the Karun, the Karun 
with the Jerahi, and the Jerahl with the Karun el 'Amah, 
to the misdirected efforts of petty Sheiks, erecting bunds 
across the Karun, as at Sablah, and across the Bahamshir, 
to fertilize the antique Mesene. One exception exists 
to this in the labours of the Sheik Suleiman of Dorak. 
By his exertions the Jerahi is rendered to the industrious 
Arabs of Ka'ban, entirely tributary to the purposes of 
agriculture and pasturage. 

The name of the Dijel-i-Shuster, the Tigris of 
Shuster, offers a corroborative testimony of the identity 
of the Karun with the Pasitigris of Arrian ; yet Von 
Hammer, who admits this as an irrefragable proof of that 
identity, still views the Shuster river as the Khoaspes, 
and the Jerahi as the Pasitigris. But it is in the marches 
of Alexander, and the campaigns of Eumenes and Anti- 
gonus, that we find the testimonies overflow with unex- 
ceptionable inferences. 

Strabo reads Pasitigris, from its being the union of all 
the rivers ; Pliny, whose Pasitigris is the river resulting 
from the union of Tigris and Euphrates, iw far as the 


tide ascended, admits the same etjrmology; Vincent 
thinks that the appellation may be derived from Pasa or 
Phasa, signifying eastern or north-eastern ; and Falconer 
(Notes to Strabo) reads Parsitigris, or Persian Tigris. 

The Pasitigris, according to Arrian, (" Hist. Indica," 
xl.,) and " Anabasis," iii. 17, separated the Uxii from 
the Susians or Kissei. That the town, and now village 
of Hawaz, may have been in the remote days of the 
conquests of the son of Philip, also a village under the 
name of Aginis, there is all the probability of a nearly 
conclusive evidence. Strabo's account of a place of 
commerce, on the Sudan lake, from whence goods were 
transported by land 800 stadia, or 50 miles, to Sus, 
agrees also in a most remarkable manner with the identi- 
fication as derived from Nearchus. The distances are 
correct ; and at the present Hawaz there are rocks which 
prevented goods being taken up the river. These 
remnants, are in the present day part artificial and part 
natural ; but it is probable that the tovs Karopa/cTa^ airi- 
TiySe? ycfievov^ could scarcely mean purposely constructed, 
although Mr. Long has read it as such. Arrian also uses 
the same expression. 

Both Rennell and Vincent have confounded Hawaz 
on the Karun with Hawisah on the Kerah. They are 
both Arabic forms of the same root, Huz, " people," or 
" bodies of men," whence Hawaz, and its diminutive 
Hawisah, which means a small collection of people. 
Sir Harford Jones says, " Ahouaz Ahwaz, or Havisa, more 
noticed by Oriental writers than Shuster." The bund 
across the river was called Hindus; Azad-ud-Dulet, built 
a noble mosque, the ruins of which are simply indicated by 
a mound. Kinneir supposes also the existence of a palace 


of Artabanes. Mignan, who was one of the few Europeans 
who have visited the Karun, mistook the rocks and hills 
of Hawaz for mounds of ruin^. It was under the earlier 
Khalifs of the house of Abbas, that it obtained its highest 
prosperity, until it revolted under Ali Ibn Muhammed, 
surnamed Prince of the Zangiz. From this moment the 
power and prosperity of the city fell, and the place gradu- 
ally sank to its present degradation. The country around 
was celebrated for its sugar plantations. 

Sablah, or Zabla, is a deserted fort and village, inha- 
bited when the waters of the Karfin flowed by their old 
bed. Sheik Suleiman constructed a bund across the river, 
to turn the waters into their old channel, and fertilize 
Dorakstan, but the attempt failed. It was the interval 
between Sablah and the Bahamshir, which was formerly 
called the Haffar canal, and not the Mo'ammerah channel, 
for the Djihan Numa expressly says that this channel, 
which now drains the Karun, was four parasangas (12 
miles) in length. 

To resume, then, the tendency of the evidence collected 
in the foregoing pages, and compared with data historically 
obtained, is to make it appear that, that evidence is in 
favour of the identity of the river of Hor-Kub, with 
Gyndes of Herodotus ; of the Ab-i-Zal, and the river of 
Diz, with Khoaspes and Eulaeus ; both the H6r-Kub and 

* Among innumerable quotations to this effect that might be made, 
I select the following. " Let me not be supposed to exaggerate, when 
I assert, that these piles of ruin, irregular, craggy, and in mani/ places 
inaccessible^ rival in appearance the Baktiyari." — p. 308. " I could 
not find any person who had been to the end of these ruins; according 
to the inhabitants, their extent would occupy a journey of two months." 
—p. 303. 


the Ab-i-Zal flowing into Eulaeus, and Eulseus into a 
lake which emptied itself into the sea by Pasitigris. 

Of the farther identity of Sus and Susa, or Shushan ; 
of that of the Kariin with the Kopratas ; of the Shiitite or 
Mushikran with the Ab-i-Shuster ; the last uniting with 
the river of Hassmaniyah at Bund-i-Kil, to fonn the Karun, 
or Pasitigris, which formerly also received the waters of 
the Shawur, and beyond the lake, those of Eulseus. 

It is not to be omitted, however, that Major Raw- 
linson, who has personally surveyed the country for a con- 
siderable extent, and from whom much is to be expected 
on the comparative and descriptive geography of these 
interesting districts, considers the westerly tributary at 
Bund-i-Kll, to be the river of Dlz, which corresponds also 
with the information obtained by the Expedition when 
at Bund-i-Kil. The question is certainly very far from 
satisfactorily settled yet, and this chapter remains the 
most theoretical in the work. 


Researches on the Geology of the Head of the 

Persian Gulf. 

The researches instituted into the nature of the forma- 
tions at the northern extremity, or head of the Persian 
Gulf, were made with a view to establish the circumscrip- 
tion of the alluvial Basin of the Euphrates, the Tigris, 
and the Karun, or the Delta of Susiana, or of Khuslstan. 

This inquiry presented the double interest of furnishing 
new materials in that branch of geology, which more 
particularly concerns the study of recent formations, and 
also of illustrating some questions of importance in 
historical geography. 

The examination afforded everywhere a great uniformity 
of characters, both in what regarded the nature and origin 
of the formations, their structure and composition, and 
also the fossils which they contained imbedded in them. 

The utmost variety presented, were sandstone conglo- 
merates, sandstones, calcareous sandstones, sands, shelly 
beds, and beds of aggregated polypiferous lithophytes. 
Of these, the calcareous sandstones were by far the most 

All these deposits belong to the Pliocene group of the 
supra-cretaceous rocks, and all contain fossils which for the 
most part are met with at the present day in the waters 
of the neighbouring Gulf, and yet these deposits are found 
to present among themselves evidences of distinct periods 
of elevation. 

The sandstone conglomerates are alone non-fossiliferous 
They occur in thin slaty beds, on the western side of the 


island of Kharij, reposing sometimes on shelly sands, 
unconformable to the older calcareous sandstone, and 
comparable to the breccias with pottery (Ceramic forma- 
tions) of the coast of Karamania, or the shelly deposits 
raised by earthquakes on the coast of Chili, and described 
by Dr. Meyen, and by Mr. Darwin. 

Another formation, of greater interest, which is met 
with on the western coast of Kharij, and which is also 
unconformable to the older Pliocene rocks of the island, 
consists of three kinds of deposits : — 

C ^p/H*r Iie<h, — Calcareous conglomerates, with congeries of shells. 

MuWc Bed^, — Compact calcareous sandstone, very shelly. 

Lower Beth. — Lithopliy tic or coral rock. An uniform aggregate of 
polypiferous lithophytes belonging to the family of Madre- 
pores, and including the genera Caryophillae, Madrepora, 
Astrea, and Meandriua. 

If this arrangement is compared wth the natural 
historical features of the adjacent shore and sea, we 
obtain the following results : — 

SiiORK. Mantime Sanihy with shells and fragments of lithophytes, 

chiefly ground down and rounded by attrition. 
Maritime Sands included in the lino of flood and of spring 
tides. Some shells, lithophytes ground down into 
powder, and cementing to form a calcareous sandstone. 

AVateh. Shallow ir<rttr.— Numerous shells and Echini. Some 

Crustaceie, numerous Ascidiap, and a few ActinifiB. 
Water of ftvm three to four Fathoms^ covered with a 
uniform growth of lithophjiiic Polypi in their various 
structures, the genera the same as above. 

In the collections made for the Expedition, the iden- 
tity of genera and species, more particularly in the con- 
chiforous MoUusks, and lithophytic Polypi, has been iilus^ 


trated by collecting, wherever possible, the living repre- 
sentatives of the fossil species. Such a collection at once 
establishes the very recent character of this formation, 
while the circumstances which are essential to the pro- 
duction of another and similar formation, are found to be 
in actual existence in the same locality, should the same 
unknown but appreciable forces of elevation, direct them- 
selves upon the same point. 

The natives of the island preserve the memory of rents 
and dislocations effected in their rocky territory by 
earthquakes, but have no knowledge nor tradition of any 
portion of the coast having been elevated by a similar 

Of a somewhat similar character, though formed, in 
fact, by the mere agency of high tides and storms, and 
afterwards covered by sand floods, are extensive beds of 
pearl oysters {Margarita^ Leach ; Pintadines, Lam. ; Avi- 
cula^ Cuv. ; Mytilus margaritifentSy Lin.) in sands on the 
eastern shore. The pearl fishery of Kharij at one time 
rivalled that of Bahrein. 

There occur in every part of the coast examples of 
marine formations that are in actual progress. Among 
the most striking of these is a strip of lowland due west of 
GhoreYn, about two miles in width. The sands consist of 
particles of transparent quartz and comminuted shells, 
which dissolving, cause a constant aggregation to be going 
on, and hence there is no sand flood. It is curious to 
remark how, owing to peculiar circumstances, shells of 
one species are observed grouped together in particular 
localities : large Cones and Strombi are the most common. 
There are no Madrepores. Another example is the island 


of Korgo, where sands almost entirely composed of com- 
minuted shells and Madrepores are daily agglutinating 
with the other zoological products of the coast. 

The other formations of the island of Kharij consist 
of hard calcareous sandstones, intercalated sand, and soft 
friable calcareous sandstones, which divide the island into 
three terraces, of which the western averages about 300 
feet in elevation above the level of the sea, and the lowest 
and easterly terrace about 60 feet. 

The upper and hard beds are everywhere nearly hori- 
zontal, but repose upon beds of similar rock, dipping 
often in opposite directions at a high angle of inclination. 
There are here evidences again, in the Pliocene forma- 
tions, of different periods of elevation — evidences which 
are also corroborated by the existence of caves, as are 
observed in the rock formations of Malta, hollowed out 
by the action of waves, and occurring in tiers, which must 
have been successively elevated above the water, or left 
at separate times by the latter, and that in a more or less 
sudden manner.. 

Although the term Pliocene is used here, it is only 
relatively to the more modem lithophytic rocks; the 
evidences to be deduced from the relative proportion of 
living and extinct species, cannot be established vnthout a 
careful examination of the fossils, compared with the best 
collections ; but almost all the species appear to be recent. 

The upper and harder beds, more particularly abound 
in Echinodermata, Zoophytes, and shells. The sandy beds 
contain sometimes a vast congeries of Balani, Ostracites, 
and Pectenidae, as perfect as if taken out of the sea. The 
softer rock abounds in a great variety of shells, among 


which, the most common on the coast at the present day 
(certain Trochi, Cypraea Arabica, a Strombus, and an 
Area), are also most common in their fossil condition. 

The characters which belong to this Kharij deposit 
have been described with the more minuteness, as they 
appertain also, with a little variety in the local grouping 
of fossil remains, to all the formations which occupy the 
low coasts of the Persian Gulf on its eastern and western 

Nothing can be more uniform or uninteresting than 
the low sandy coast around the harbour of Ghore'in ; it 
is a desert, void of vegetation and animal life ; and, upon 
examination, is found to present the same calcareous 
sandstones, sands, and coarse coral conglomerates. To 
the south of the harbour, these naked tracts do not rise 
above 200 feet above the level of the sea, and are gene- 
rally lower; but in the west they give origin to a slightly- 
undulating country. 

The Pallacopas passes through a sandy country in 
its northern part, but, at its lower portion, and near the 
site of Zobeir or ancient Basrah ; the sands are found 
to repose upon this modern marine formation, which is 
there very compact and fine-grained. This is the present 
south-western limit of the Basin of the Euphrates. 

The islands of Fellchi and 'Ohar are not of alluvial 
origin, but consist of low beds of coarse marine deposits. 
The islands seen by Archias would appear not to have 
been these, but alluvial deposits, which now form part of 
the mainland. Heeren advocates the identity of Bubiyan 
with the Icarus of Alexander (" Asiatic Nations," vol. ii. 
p. 229); there is, however, a total disproportion of dis- 
tance in the 120 stadia given, which is increased by 


bringing the present Kharij into the category. There 
appears, also, little probability that there was ever popu- 
lation or cultivation sufficient to have rendered any of 
the islands off Ghorein the prominent seat of a worship, 
which the Macedonians transmitted to us by their own 
mythological nomenclature. 

That part of Farslstan which occupies the coast near 
the head of the Persian Gulf, and is distinguished as the 
Dushistan, is, for the most part, low; and composed, with 
some exceptions, of marine deposits of similar characters. 
On this great territorial tract of so much uniformity in 
contrasted configuration and physical aspect, these de- 
posits form capes, head-lands, and peninsulas, which were 
often formerly islands, as Abu-Shehr (Bushire), Ru-el- 
Shehr, Bang, &c. ; interior tracts, slightly undulating; 
and even low ranges of hilly ground. The exceptions 
are, when the sea has deposited more modern alluvia, 
covered during one season of the year with water, and 
during the other with saline efflorescences, and generally 
cementing islands of Pliocene origin, to a mainland of no 
greater antiquity. 

The peninsula of Abu-Sh^hr, the Mesambria of Arrian, 
was formerly an island, bounded by cliffs of little ele- 
vation, to the east and to the west. At Ruhflah, at the 
south-west extremity, there are sandstones abounding in 
shells; at Ru-el-Shehr, the Portuguese Bushire, hard 
calcareous sandstones, with beautiful Echini, and sands 
which disintegrate with rapidity. At Abii-Shehr are two 
beds, of little elevation, of fossiliferous calcareous sand- 
stone. The rest of the peninsula, which is about 15 
miles in length, resembles Kharij in its geological cha- 


The water furnished by these marine formations is 
rarely good ; there is one spring near Ru-el-Shehr loaded 
with hydrosulphurio acid, which, if not resulting from the 
decomposition of marine organic products, may tend to 
establish some affinity in the causes of recent elevations 
with those which belong to the Miocene formations of 
central Fars, and other districts in the east, which are 
characterised by deposits of marine salt {Salmarite) and 
sulphur, and by decompositions probably closely related, 
as evidenced in the production of extensive deposits of 
sulphate of lime, and the sudden diffiising over the sur- 
face of the Persian Gulf, after storms or earthquakes, of 
naphtha or bituminous products. . 

The marine formations of the Dushistan propagate 
themselves as far as the banks of the Indiyan (Arosis, 
Oroates, Araxis, or Tab river,) on the coast line ; and by 
Hawaz into the province of Khusistan (Susiana) to the 
north ; and to the west, as far as the islands of Deri and 
Akiyarin, or Btinah Deri (Dera of Ptolemy?). The cir- 
cumstance of these islands not being alluvial, which I 
ascertained in a journey made in a native boat along these 
coasts, is of much interest, inasmuch as the evidences of 
geology go to prove the durable character of that part of 
the coast, putting a fragment of historical geography 
beyond a doubt, in which all that extends to the west- 
ward is more or less involved in obscurity. The recent 
marine formations (in geognostic chronology) which bound 
the Delta of Susiana to the east, repose upon the supra- 
cretaceous rocks of the Persian Apennines, the Luristan 
and Baktiyari ranges, and the mountains of Farslstan. 


Structure of that Part of the Peeisian Apennines 


The province of Farsistan, which formerly constituted 
the whole of Persia Proper, has, from time immemorial, 
from the distinctness of its contrasted configurations, been 
divided into high and low country. The Climax megale 
and Syrtibale of Pliny, are preserved in the present day 
in the distinctive designations of Sirhad and Gurmisir, or 
hot and cold climate, although the latter is more gene- 
rally known as the Dushistan*, or stony district. The 
passes by which central Fars is approached " from the 
plain," were by Diodorus denominated, after the historians 
of Alexander, K\cfia/c€^y or ladders ; according to Malte- 
Brun, because they were cut in steps, but in fact, because 
they consist of a series of defiles, and of terraces or plains, 
each elevated above the other f. 

* The u is pronounced like a in ask, 

f The opinion has been embraced by many writers, that the Kotul- 
i-Sukrab, near Kal'at Sif in, one of the longest and most difficult passes 
in Persia, corresponded to the Ladders of Diodorus, but Sir John Mac- 
donald Kinneir, in his " Geographical Memoir," identified it with more 
critical correctness, with the straits, called Persian, by Arrian. The 
circumstances in their description, which decide upon the locality 
given in the text, are the passage of a plain to reach the Ladders ; 
the occurrence of many passes to constitute ladders ; the fruitful cha- 
racter of the country, corresponding so well with the former condition 
of Shapur, Kaserun, and Abdui, particularly noticed by Ibn Haukal, 
and in the Djihan-Numa ; and the circumstances attendant upon the 
choice of a passage as detailed by Diodorus ; this being the only road 
in the district in which it occurs. 


In proceeding eastward from the Dushistan, to the 
ancient city of Persepolis, by Shiraz ; there are seven dis- 
tinct plains to be reached by as many, more or less abrupt 
and difficult, passes or defiles. 

Of these plains, two, viz, that of Kaserun and that of 
?Vbduf, are subsidences upon linear axes, and the two 
lateral chains of hills have each separately an opposed 
dip, the anticlinal lines of which are parallel to the line 
of the axis of the intervening valleys or plains, — more 
correctly plains, as they have no valley path or thalweg^ 
or any central stream or rivulet. One plain, that of Dush 
'Arjun, is a subsidence upon a central axis, and contains 
a lake ; the plain of Khaist is an elevated table-land or 
plateau ; the plains of Kumarij and Shiraz are of a com- 
pound nature, and that of Merdusht is continuous with 
the great central levels of Kerman. 

The defiles or passes* are sometimes artificial roads, 
carried up the more or less perpendicular face of a rock, 
as in the Kotul-i-Kumarij and the pass called the 
D6chter ; at times they are roads carried over the mini- 
mum of crest of a hilly ol* mountain range by a summit 
level, as in the Kotul-i-Pir-a-Zun ; and at others they are 
lines of division between rocks of a different nature, as at 
the Dalaki pass and the Tenk-i-Turkan. The Kotul-i- 
Mullu is a gradual ascent by a river-side, till the road is 
carried up a precipitous rock to gain the plain of Khaist. 
The Tenk-i-Allah-i-Akbar is a line of separation between 
two hills. 

* The defiles are called, in Persian, Tenk or Tenki, and Pul, as in 
TTvXai, and Kotul, Kothul, or Cothul. See also Baron de Merciat's 
Analysis of Yon Hammer s Memoir on Persia, in the " Recueil de la 
Societe de Geographie de Paris," vol. ii. 



The mountain rocks that are met with in this district 
consist of sandstones, limestones, gypsum, clays, marles, 
and saliferous deposits {Salmarite)y which all in their zoo- 
logical characters appertain to the Palseotherian epoch, 
and in their geognostic position are superior to the chalk 

Immediately on leaving the Dushistan by the pass of 
Dalaki, a formation of coarse rubbly limestone, contain- 
ing beds of Ostracites, of the genera Ostrea, Perna, and 
Avicula; of Chamaceae, and other testaceous Acalepha, 
which have for the most part generic representatives in 
the existing waters of the Gulf of Persia ; has superim- 
posed upon it a formation of brown slaty sandstone, 
apparently non-fossiliferous. Above this again in the 
hills to the north are straw and buff-yellow, compact, 
uniform, limestones; blue, green, and red marles; and 
gypsum, in thin beds. The strata are very flexuous and 
contorted, but the general dip ranges from N. 40° W. to 

In the valley of the Shapur the brown sandstones are 
succeeded, on the northern banks of the river, by red 
sandstones, red sandstone conglomerates, and red clays, 
generally saliferous, which rise in cliffs upwards of 600 
feet above the river-bed. The pass of Kotul-i-Mull<i, 
figured in that admirable work, Frazer's " Persia," is in 
red sandstone and conglomerate. 

The plain of Khaist, at the top of this ascent, has a 
soil composed of lacustrine and fluviatile clays, for the 
most part cultivated, or covered with planjts of the genera 
Glycyrrhiza and Ononis. 

Low hills of gravel lead from the latter plain into 
another country of rocks and defiles. The Shapur river 


18 found flowing between high precipices of sandstone, 
limestone, and blue and earth-coloured clays and marles. 
The last are frequently trarersed by thin veins of fibrous 
gypsum. The clays are strongly impregnated with saline 
matters, which, dissolved in numerous streamlets, coat 
the rock with efHorescences, sometimes pure and white, 
but more frequently discoloured by the presence of iron 
in different states of oxidation, and other adventitious 
matters. The Kotul-i-Kumarij, which leads from this 
district to the plain of the same name, is carried up the 
precipitous fiwe of a rock about 600 feet in elevation 
above the foot of the pass. The rocks consist of lime- 
Mones, marles, clays, and gypsum, which have an inclina- 
tion from the horizon of upwards of 60°, and hence rise 
almost vertically to near the summit of the pass, where 
they curve suddenly round to an horizontal stratification. 
A small hilly district of limestone, gypsum, and limestone 
breccia, occurs between the summit of the pass and the 

The plain of Kum^ij is about eight miles in length, 
and five and six in width ; it is surrounded by rocks of 
different characters ; to the north, the prolongation of the 
high limestone ridge whicn borders the plain of K^sertin^ 
descends a short distance, when the beds rise again^ to 
form lofty precipices which front the south-west. In a 
southern direction the valley terminates by a ridge of 
limestone breccia, which dips beneath the limestone^ 
gypsum, and saliferous clays, that occupy the whole of 
the western portion of the valley. 

A nearly circular hollow, about 200 feet in depth, 
occurs in the hills inmiediately above the village of 
Kumarij, at the bottom of which is a fine depodt of rock 

P 2 


salt {Sdbna/nte)^ upwards of 40 feet in thickness, remark- 
ably pure, in homogenous, vitreous masses, which cleave 
with facility into cubes {Salmare compact(hcliv(Me9 Beu- 
dant). It is generally transparent, but rarely coloured red 
or gray ; it also contains small quantities of crystalline sul- 
phur. It effloresces in stringy fibres, and the excavations 
are replete with pendulous stalactites and cauliflower 
excrescences. The beds dip to S. 10** E. at an angle of 
17°. They are associated with a brown argillaceous clay, 
which contains marine salt and bituminous matters. 

The Tenk-i-Turkan, or Turks' Pass, leads from the 
plain of Kumarij to that of Kaserun ; it is less precipitous, 
but equally rocky with the former ones. It is not of 
great extent, nor is its elevation or descent considerable^ 
It is most interesting, as occupying the line of division 
between two different rocks, limestone to the south, and 
gypsum to the north. 

It is to bo remarked, that the gypsum of the tertiary 
or supra-crotaceous formations of Fars differs entirely in 
its mineralogical characters from that of the same group 
near Paris ; it is homogeneous, crystalline, and transparent. 

The valley of Kaserun is about 30 miles in length, 
and seven in breadth, but its southern boundary must be 
arbitrary. It is shut up on both sides by high ridges of 
limestone, which dip inwardly on both sides at almost 
right angles towards the centre, and then, sweeping round * 
at the summit, dip externally in an opposite direction. 
There occurs, at the southern extremity, a solution in the 
continuity of this arrangement, by which the strata dip- 
ping outwards are separated by a deep rent from those 
which dip inwards, leaving thus an intermediate space 
between them. 


The northern part of the valley is occupied by low 
hills of gypsum, a continuation of the Kumarij formation ; 
and the Shaptir river, issuing from the easterly limestone 
ridge, after flowing past the mountain-environed and 
antique capital of the Sassanian dynasty, sweeps along 
this portion of the plain ; according to Persian historians, 
once the seat of culture and of pleasure gardens ; but now 
converted into bog, or occupied by plantations of rice. 

The rocky pass, in which the Shapur bas reliefs are 
sculptured, is about 30 yards in width at its narrowest 
parts, and consists of limestone strata, which dips with an 
inclination of from 32' to 38° to the N. 15" W.* 

The same rocks then curve round to the north and to 
the south in a semicircular manner, so as to encircle a 
deep vale about two miles in diameter, with mural pre- 
cipices averaging from 400 to 600 feet in height, and 
reposing upon a steep slope, which descends double that 
distance into the valley below. 

The celebrated cave of Shapur, which contains, with 
the exception of the mutilated remains at Tak-i-Bostan, 
the only specimen of statuary sculpture in Persia (Frazefs 
" Persia," p. 204 ; Balbi, « Abrege de Geographic," p. 
678), is nearly in the centre of the northern semicircle ; 
the outer entrance is about 30 feet above the base of the 
mural precipices, following in its ascent and descent the 

* Morier says the yalley is scarcely 30 yards across ; Colonel John- 
son makes it 200 ; " truth undoubtedly lies between," says Fraser (p. 
201). The intervention of a riyer impedes a correct measurement. I 
obtained my data by a base of 200 yards — a rough method at the 
most ; but crossed the river a little below, to copy the sculptures on 
the right bank, which have not yet been described. Probably Colonel 
Johnson meant feet. 


»lof>6 of the beds, which here, as on every side, dip away 
from the middle of the valley as from a central axis. 
This cavern^ which I succeeded in exploring to its most 
remote ramifications, is 464 paces in extent, and replete 
with stalactites and stalagmites, assuming the usual 
variety of bright and l>eauteous forms which render such 
caves so attractive and remarkable*. 

At the s^iuth-eastem extremity of the valley of Kase- 
r(jii, the ridge of rocks lowers considerably, and termi- 
nates in an abrupt rock, from the side of which flows a 
subterranean streamf , which there is strong presumptive 
evidence, as well as local tradition, for believing to be 
the exit of the waters of the plain of Dush 'Arjiin. These 
waters also empty themselves into a lake at the southern 
extremity of the plain. 

A little beyond this, the Kotul-i-D6chter, or Girls' 
Pass, (of which a drawing is given in Sir W. Ouseley's 
travels,) is carried up the per[)endicular face of a rock of 
compact limestone, of a buff and straw-yellow colour, 
about 600 feet in height ; and a road leads over the hills 
to the plain of Abdui, remarkable for its fine forests of 
oak, which cover the plain and clothe the slopes of the 
mountains. The physical circumstances in which this 
plain is placed are similar to that of Kaserun, with the 

* Colonel Johnson deprived hirngelf of a magnificent sight by not 
puvhing ki« explorationii a little farther. Mr. Morier does not appear 
to have been iutereHted in the inquiry ; yet the fame of the cave has 
pot been greater for its colossal sculpture than it has for its unfathom- 
able recesses. Fraser and Balbi have alluded to these as first given by 
air W, Ouseley, after Bheik Zarkub. 

t At this point are some painted soulpturesi, i^xemnKtmg the Prince 
Timiir (lately a visitor in London), with attendants^ a lion, &Ck. 


ezoeption that, to the south, the opposite ridges with an 
opposed stratifieation, instead of continuing their parallel- 
ism, are prolonged in a curved line, and ultimately meet 

It is evident that a disposition of this kind throws 
difficulties in the way of determining the direction of the 
line of elevation which has prevailed in mountain chains, 
and may also be said to be more or less incongruous with 
a constancy of positional developement as affected by the 
geognostic age, and the attendant phenomena of elevation 
belonging to these formations; but there is, in fact, 
nothing that at all suggests difficulties to understand how 
elevationst, which will always take place in the line of the 
least resistance when formed upon a linear axis, and 
follow the direction of the upheaving force, may also be 
modified by altered circumstances of resistance into a 
more or less curved developement. In such a disposition, 
we only perceive a transition from a linear to a curved 
system of elevations, and which may be carried in ai| 
extreme ease to a developement upon a central axis, or 
into circular and annular systems more or less continuous^ 
or broken up into segments of a circle, still all co^orelated 
by position and by stratification. 

It is thus with regard to the relation of the D^shtis- 
tan, with the K\b/jia/c€<^ of Fars. In the primary deve- 
lopement of the mountain^and, there are ridges of moun- 
tains and hills of the most distinct physical eharaeters, 
propagated along an easaly^determined axis of elevation, 
as at Kasertin ; these are succeeded at Abdui by a new 
disposition, in which the operation of powers of resistance 
equal to those of elevation, or of a diminution in the 
effioieney o# the latter, a?e observable in the tendesey to 


a curved developement, which, as might be thus theoreti- 
cally anticipated, is but the preliminary of the same action 
circumscribed almost to a point, or to a central axis, in 
the plain of Dush 'Arjiin. 

There are two passes over the mountains, from the 
plain of Abdui to that of Dush 'Arjun. The southerly one, 
called the Kotul-i-Pir-a-Zun, or the Old Woman's Pass, 
is a road simply carried over the lower part of the crest 
of the range, being upwards of eight miles in length, and 
leading directly into the plain. The northerly pass is 
above the village of Abdui, and is carried in part through 
a fissure in the rocks, and after surmounting the ridge, 
leads to the south along a narrow rugged valley, about 
eight miles in length, and flanked by high and precipitous 
rocks of lithophytic limestone, reposing upon coloured 
marles, clays, and thin limestone beds. 

This central limestone district is not wanting in fossils. 
They are MoUusks in the generality of beds, but Zoophytes 
predominate in others. The most characteristic of the 
former are Ostracites, Cardiaceae, and Buccanoidese, more 
particularly gigantic specimens of Pemae and Cones ; at 
Shapur, Cerithise occur, with Turrulites, Belemnites, and 
Ammonites. Ammonites are also met with above Dalakl. 
The yellow limestones of the D6chter furnished most 
Pectens and Arcse. It will be impossible to determine 
the exact age of the supra-cretaceous rock of Fars, without 
an accurate comparison of the species with the collections 
of an efficient cabinet ; but from everything that I have 
observed, I should be strongly inclined to consider them 
as belonging to the Miocene epoch. There is, however, 
a chance of error in this deduction, inasmuch as, although 
the species assimilate uniformly more with the existing 


species of the neighbouring seas, both in the Lithbphytes 
and the MoUusks, than they do in the Eocene foimations 
of Europe, this is probably what might be anticipated 
where the change of climate has not been so great, and 
where the genera of the European Eocene epochs continue 
to propagate themselves to the Pliocene and to actual 

The plain of Dush 'Arjun contains a small lake, which 
is supplied by a subterranean river flowing from the rock 
by many abundant springs, but the lake has no perceptible 

This plain is succeeded by a country of low hills, 
composed almost entirely of limestones, marlei^, and 
gypsum, until a more lofty range supervenes to the plain 
of Shiraz, which is composed of sandstones and red sali- 
ferous clays, alternating with limestones. Several rivulets 
with saline water intersect this country, and a fine stream 
of water that is not saline, flows past the Khan-i-Zenund. 

The plain of Shiraz is chiefly formed of silt and mud, 
deposited by waters of inundation, purposely brought over 
the land for the cultivation of rice, gourds, cucumbers, 
and other vegetables. I, in consequence, was not enabled 
to detect either lacustrine or marine shells. 

The pass of, Tenk-i-AUah-i-Akbar, from the pious 
exclamation of countrymen on first seeing Shiraz at this 
point ; is at its conMnencement entirely composed of lime- 
stone, from which flows the streamlet of Buknabad ; but 
this is succeeded, a few miles ftirther to the east, by 
sandstones, which are again, in the progress forward, super- 
imposed by limestones ; — ^the same compact rock of coarse 
limestone, and containing the same shells as that which 
constitutes the ranges of naked barren luUs which here 


and there diversify the plain of Merdusht, — ^which also form 
the high and isolated mounts, with castellated remains; of 
Istakur, Sheik 'Usteh, and Shemkari ; by Persian writers 
called the Seh Gumbedan, or Three Domes. In the 
Royal Mountain at Persepolis*, the same rock is more 
homogeneous, and uniformly compact. It is also dark- 
coloured, from the presence of carbon ; and being capable 
of assuming a good polish, becomes the Persepolitan 
marble. At the Nak-i-Rustam it is again granular and 
gray, but often compact. 

The banks of the Cyrusf , a name still preserved in Kur- 
'Ab, and those of the Bund-Emir, consist of alluvia depo- 
sited during the floods of these waters. The only vegetation 
the latter can boast of, in the Persepolitan districts, are, 
certain saline plants (Salicornia and Salsola), much Gly- 
cyrrhiza, and an occasional tamarix shrub t; but the 
greater part of the plain, when not cultivated, is covered 
either with Glycyrrhiza or with saline plants, denoting a 
marine origin to the soil, which was only probably from 

* Heeren and Von Hoek confounded the Double Mountain of 
Ctesias with the Royal Mountain of Diodonis. Von Hammer called 
attention to this fact from an investigation of the Oriental geographers. 

t Strabo (xv. pu 160) says the name of Cyrus was altered from the 
original one of Agiodates, by Cyrus himself. Agrodates is not Persic 
nor Pehlvic. The Agrodates of Strabo is, however, the Bund-Emir, of 
which Kur *Ab is a tributary. Bund-Emir is a modem name, indica- 
tive of a bund or dam, by which the waters are arrested about ten miles 
to the south of Persepolis, and which the author visited in company 
with Colonel Shee. 

J " Le Bend-emir renomme pay ses rivages verdoyaus et ombrages." 
(Malte-Brun, p. 230.) "There's a bower of roses by Bend-emir's 
stream." (Lalla Rookh.) A French geographer, probably better acquainted 
with the Gazels of Haf iz than the Memoir of Kinneir, speaks of 
^ Shiraa sur le Rocknabad." 


want of time not corroborated by the discovery of recent 
marine shells. 

This point, referring the formations of the upper part 
of the plain, whose lowest axis is still occupied by the 
salt lake of Baktegan, to the recent existence of the sea 
in that neighbourhood, may serve to illustrate some 
important points in the ancient history of these remarkable 

It is well known that Passargadse (Strabo), Pasargada 
(Ptolemy and Solinus), but by Q. Curtius in one place 
(v. vi. 16), denominated Persagadum urbs^ and in another 
(x. 1. 22), Persagadse, and the tomb of Cyrus ; have 
been identified by Sir Robert Ker Porter and Mr. Mo- 
rier with the Mesjid^S-Madreh Suleiyman on the plains 
of Murghab; but a difficulty still remains, and which 
the critical acumem of Heeren, Ritter, and Von Hammer 
has not dispelled. If, as it would appear, Pasargada 
and Persepolis were not the same place, what was 
the name of the latter previous to its Greek baptism ? 
certainly not Istakur, nor Tacht-i-Jamshid. In nomen- 
clature, Pasargada, Persarum Castra, according to Pliny 
and Stephanus, is synonymous with Persepolis ; the city 
of the tribe which founded the Kayanian dynasty. 
Again, if the two places were identical, yet distinct, as 
regards city and palace, or city and ecclesiastical structures ; 
where is the gulf, — " quo Pasargadas septimo die navi- 
gatur," by the Sitiogagus of Pliny, the Agrodates of 
Strabo ? This is the point to which the geological structure 
of the Merdusht has reference. 

The distances of places mentioned are, according to an 
Itinerary published in Sir John Macdonald Kinueir's 
" Geographical Memoir on Persia." 





-Shehr, or Bushire, 

to Alkhanji - 

. 12 




- 12 

Khaist - 



. 11 



Dush 'Arjun 

. 18 



Baghi Shirgah - 

- 24 




. 14 



181 miles. 

The synonymes of some of the places mentioned in 
in this chapter are as follows : — 

Dalaki, — Dolaki of Morier. 

Khaist, — ^Khist of Eraser; Keucht, Dupre ; Hicht, Von Hammer. 

Shapur, — Mehaver of Dupre. 

Borazjun, — Booruzzoon, Col. Johnson; Baradjoon, Dupre; Bo- 

rasdjan, Von Hammer. 
Dush-i- Arjun, or Dush-* Arjun, — Desht-e- Argun, Morier ; Desht- 

i-Erjen and Dustarozoon, Johnson ; Dill Stardgin, Dupre ; 

Desh-i-Arzhen, Sir W. Ouseley. 
Khan-i-Zenund, — Khoune-Zinioune, Dupre; Khone Zungun, 

Johnson ; Khone Zenioun, Morier; Khan-i-Zenian, Ouseley. 


Geology of Southern Kxjbdistan. 

Hamerun HiUs. — ^The western outliers of the hills, at 
Dell Abbas, consisting of red friable sandstones, with 
pebbles of quartz, dip SO"* to the south-west. All the 
remaining ridges of the same hills, dip to the south-east. 
The general direction of the beds, and that of the chain 
of hills itself, is from S. E. to N. W. The second ridge, 
in going from west to east, is a gray or blueish sandstone, 
containing red nodules of a silico-magnesian substance, 
bearing the same relation to these beds, that the cream- 
coloured silico-magnesian nodules and veins do to the 
new red sandstone in England. Beyond are some beds of 
sand. The third ridge is composed of red sandstones, with 
occasional thin veins of gypsum, and brown earth-coloured 
argillaceous beds. The fourth ridge culminates over all 
the others, and is capped by a deposit of pebbles, which 
alternate with the upper sandstone beds, and have a con- 
temporaneous dip. This pebbly deposit becomes more 
abundant on the eastern acclivities, beyond which they 
are strewn over part of the plain of Kara Tepeh. The 
whole of these beds are non-fossiliferons. The greatest 
elevation is 600 feet above the plain. 

Plain of Kara Tepeh. — ^The plain of Kara Tepeh is 
wide and level. It is for the most part covered with 
Graminese and Artemisia ; occasionally cultivated ; some- 
times gravelly. 

Kara Tepeh Hills — ^The Kara Tepeh hills are com- 
posed of sandstones, and red earth, everywhere covered 


with limestone gravel. They do not rise more than 300 
feet above the plain. The direction of the range is from 
S. E. to N. W. To the west, the ridges of sandstone are 
more developed. 

Vdley of the Ndhr^dn.—^Yhe valley of the Naht-ran 
is for the most part covered with grass or flowering plants, 
in some parts gravelly. The Nahr-ran, a tributary of thfe 
Diyallah^ flows through the centre. 

Zen^Kabdd HiUs.-^THe Kiara Tepeh hills are separated 
by the valley of Kiyor-derk from the Zeu'-Kabad hills ; 
these do not rise more than 300 feet above the plain, 
and are composed of coarse sandstone^ and sandstone con^- 
glomerates, with a slight dip to the east, and eterywhere 
capped with limestone graveL 

Kifrt HiU8.-*-^ThQ valley or plain of Kifri, not above a 
mile in width, separates the Zen-^Kabad from the Kifri hills, 
which front the valley, with nearly perpendicular clifls, 
rising upwards of 300 feet above the plain. 

This chain is composed of alternating powerful beds 
of gypsum, and red sandstones and clays. The gypsum 
is transparent, crystalline, laminar, or snow-white and 

About eight milts to the north-west, a fresh-water 
limestone makes its appearance^ hard, sonorous, with 
frequent vesicular cavities of a grayish-yellow colour, and 
with softer beds containing Cyclades. This rock soon 
supersedes the gypsum, and is at first accompanied by 
coarse brown sandstones and saliferons sands, but ulti- 
tamt^y occut)ies nearly the whole of the cliffs. The dip 


of the strata is generally to the norths a little east» but 
local variations occur. 

The Kifri hills course, in a remarkably straight line, 
in a direction N. 70 W. to S. 70 E., for 15 miles, when 
they curve round to N. 25 W. There is break in the 
chain behind Kifiri', through which the road to SuleimlL- 
niyah passes. Another is four miles to the N. W., through 
which passes a winter torrent, called Kuri Chai'. Twelve 
miles from Kifri a road is carried over the hills to springs 
of naphtha. Lastly, at Tfiz-Khurma-tu, the river *Athim 
passes through a fissure in the rocks. 

AH Ddgh. — ^A monument erected on the crest of the 
hills to commemorate a tradition of Alf having tied his 
horse to that spot, has given its name to the range to the 
east of Tuz-Khurma-tu. Below this monument, and on 
the summit of a knoll, overhanging the river, are also the 
ruins of a castellated building ; and immediately opposite 
to this, on the south side of the river, are wells, from 
whence naphtha and petroleum are obtained. 

A section on the right bank afforded : 1st, Low hills 
of limestone gravel, alternating with, or capped by, coarse 
sands and marles, with beds of variously-coloured red and 
ochre-brown ; yellow, and pink, by feroxides, and hydrated 
feroxides. Dip 14° N. E. 

2nd]y, Another ridge of coarse sandstones and marles ; 
Cyclade limestone; granular and fibrous gypsum; and 
argillaceous shales, sometimes nodular, and blue or black 
when carbonaceous, or red and brown with feroxides. 
Dip 26' N. E. 

These beds, from which the naphtha springs issue, were 
abundant in various mineral products, among which were : 


Ea/rihy Lignites^ black and brown, not fibrous, in thin 
seams, in saliferous marles and gypseous marles ; Selenite^ 
in lenticular masses, of a darkish tint ; Salmarite (chloride 
of sodium), in efflorescence, and coarsely granular ; Celes-- 
tine (sulphate of strontian), in radiated balls; Stdphur, 
small crystallized fragments in Celestine ; Katheritey pure 
aluminous earth, non-alkaline, white, in efflorescences ; 
earthy ( Websterite) ; Malachite^ pulverulent ; Feroaddes^ 
red (peroxide), brown (protoxide), yellow (hydrate of the 
protoxide), ochre (hydrate of the peroxide) ; Phosphorite^ 
(earthy blue phosphate of iron). 

3rdly, A ridge with castellated ruins. Gypsum, 
opake, granular, and fibrous, in a bed from 10 to 12 feet 
in thickness. Cream-coloured marles, red saliferous sands 
and clay, and pebbly deposit, from three to four feet. 
Gypsum from 12 to 14 feet, succeeded by a powerful bed, 
about 30 feet, of cream-coloured marles. Dip 19° N. E. 

Beyond these hills is a country of tertiary red sand- 
stones, cropping out of the soil in parallel ridges, and 
alternating with red sand and coarse brown or blueish 

The general direction of the beds in All Dagh, or 
Jebel Ali, and of the parallel ranges of sandstone beyond, 
is from S. 60 E. to N. 60 W. That of the hills them- 
selves is N. 25 W. 

The naphtha well is 15 feet deep, and filled 1 feet 
with water, holding various saline substances in solution, 
but amidst which, chloride of sodium is so abundant, 
that the water is evaporated during the summer months 
in shallow pans, and the residue used, without refining, as 
culinary salt. Sulphuretted hydrogen, or hydrosulphuric 
acid, is evolved in considerable quantities. About 80 


pints of naphtha and petroleum may, it is said, be skimmed 
off the surfece in 24 hours, and the produce of the salt 
is valued annually at 20,000 piastres. The well is cleaned 
once a year. 

Owing to the difference existing in the direction of 
the Alf Dagh, and that of the beds, which enter into its. 
composition, about two miles beyond Tuz Khurma-tu, 
red sandstones, alternating with gypsum, occupy the 
cliffs, which previously consisted of Cyclade limestone, 
marles and gypsum. 

The hills gradually diminish in height, and are ulti- 
mately lost in the plain, about 10 miles beyond Tuz 

The Kard-chuk-Ddgh^y form tolerably lofty hills, on 
Tigris, south of the Zab ; from thence they course by 
Altun Kupri to Kerkuk, and are continued to Taok. 
They consist throughout of Cyclade limestones, gypsum, 
marles, saliferous sands, and sandstone, having a general 
dip from 5° to 30° to the eastward. The general direc- 
tion is from S. 70 E. to N. 70 W. 

Two ranges of low hills course to the east of Kerkuk, 
in a direction N. 70 W. The fir«t rises scarcely 200 feet 
above the plain, the second about 500. They are sepa- 
rated by a rocky plain, about four miles in width. The 
westerly range consists of Cyclade limestone and gypsum, 
the plain of red and brown sandstone, and red saliferous 
sands ; the upper range of the same sands, and sandstones 
with gypsum. 

* The u here is pronounced by the peasants as our o. Rich spells it 
Kara Chuk. 



The Cyclade limestone varies much in its mineralo- 
gical characters ; at times a mere calcareous marie ; it 
passes from a friable Jimestone to a compact, hard, sono- 
rous rock ; which again becomes cellular, hemi-crystalline, 
and concretionary; not unlike an ancient travertino, 
where masses of slowly-deposited calcareous spar have 
aggregated in little crystalline centres, leaving cavities 
between, while the globular portions have a radiated 
crystalline structure. 

This is the character of the limestone deposit at the 
Abu G^ger of the Arabs, the Korkuk Baba of the Turks, 
both meaning the father of boiling, a place remarkable 
for the exhibition of flames, which appear to have been 
in existence jfrom the most remote periods, as they are 
noticed by Strabo. 

Flames of Abii Geger^ or Korkuk Bahd. — ^The lime- 
stone at this point has entirely superseded the marles and 
gypsum, and the fires occur in this formation in a little 
central depression upon the summit of the ridge. The 
strata do not preserve the general dip, but incline more 
or less from the same point as a common centre, leaving 
no distinct anticlinal line. 

The spot whence the flames issue has a dull, dusky, 
and cinereous aspect in broad daylight, and the flames are 
only visible upon near approach. The evolution of sul- 
phureous acid was so distinct, that many natives could 
not bear it for many seconds. The thermometer held in 
the evolved gases rose to 220°. Wherever a spear was 
thrust into the ground, a new flame burst forth, nor was 
it the pale, waving, lambent flame of carburetted hydrogen, 
nor the unsustained light of hydrosulphuric acid in com« 


bu£ftion, but a fierce and ardent fire, like that whiQb 
would be produced by the mingled burning of sulpbuTi 
coal, or bitumen. 

The examination of the mineral substances scatter^ 
around, furnished little yariety ; but the indications were 
of a highly speculative character. They consisted almost 
entirely of altered and calcined limestones; of coke from 
bitumen, that has undergone semi-combustion ; of sulphur» 
pulverulent and crystalline; and of coarse bituminous 

The rarer minerals were sulphate of iron, pulverulent 
phosphates of the same metal, and pulverulent red cinnabar. 

A few facts are proved by this investigation. 1st, 
That the phenomenon of the Abu Geger is not allied to, 
or connected with, the great volcanic phenomena which 
act through fissures or rents, or through open canals of 
communication ; from the deep or central portions of th9 
earth's crust, to the circumference. 2ndly, That it there- 
fore belongs to some peculiar and local chemical action. 
Srdly, That from the nature of the mineral substances, 
occurring in and around the site of the phenomenon^ 
various bituminous products, sulphur and moisture, are 
concerned in its production ; and lastly, it does not depend 
for its existence, to having been accidentally set fire to^ 
for the combustion is subterranean ; and, open the soil to 
any direction within the compass of the same actions, 
flames will follow. 

The phenomenon is closely allied to the combustion 
of bituminous shales, and carburetted alum slates, as on 
the coast of the county of Kerry (" History of Kerry, 1752"). 
At Charmouth in Dorsetshire, at Aubin on the Aveyron^ 
and DutivieUe in Prussia ; and as in these casesi the agents 

Q 2 


recognised as producing the phenomenon came under 
actual cognizance, (Humboldt, " Personal Narrative," vol. 
vi., p. 106.; " Caves of Ballybunian," p. 16,) so in the 
one at present under consideration ; many of the products 
are simple and compound combustibles, which, as they 
are observed in situ in neighbouring localities, leave no 
doubt as to the origin of the flames. The peculiar features 
in the present case are, the extent of the phenomenon, 
its exceeding duration, and that it is continued during the 
most arid weather, according to report. 

Not far from the Abu G^ger are several wells, from 
which petroleum is obtained in large quantities. The 
wells were seven in number, although constantly varying ; 
for, dig where they will, the same mineral oil oozes out, 
over an area of about 300 square yards. 

The formations consist of coarse bituminous beds 
below, intercalated with Cyclade limestone, accompanied 
in the upper surface by marly sands,* containing granular 
sulphur. The wells are dug to a depth of from 12 to 15 
feet, occupying, in fact, the same position, which it may 
be supposed is the level of the focus of igneous action in 
the Abu G^ger. The petroleum oozes out from the sides, 
and from eight to ten gallons are collected from each pit 
per day. The thermometer indicated in these wells 71** 
Fahrenheit, which is above the mean annual temperature. 
White naphtha is called by the Arabs naphtha 'Abiat ; 
black naphtha, or petroleum, Kara naphtha. 

The first ridge east of Kerkuk is low ; direction N. 70 
W. : consists of gypsum and calcareous gypsum, and 
sandstone, dipping north somewhat east. The second of 
these rocks, which I first saw developed at this plac^ 
bec(»nes an important formation in these countries, more 


especially at Musul, from its application to architectural 
purposes, being almost as easily worked, and much more 
durable than gypsum. It is largely quarried at this place, 
for slabs, pavement-stones, tomb-stones, &c., and is 
generally designated as Musul marble. 

The second ridge consists of brown and blueish- 
coloured sandstones, sometimes micaceous, alternating 
with red sands, and rising in low successive ridges, only a 
few feet above the soil ; some of these sandstones are 
fissile, and other beds slaty, and are quarried for building 
stones. This country extends over a space of about four 

The third district is a country of red sands, reposing 
on red and brown sandstones, divided into separate 
rounded hills, or cut by the waters into a system of small 
valleys, of the customary simple relations, where their 
formation depends upon denudation solely. Towards the 
upper part of the district, limestone gravel begins to show 
itself upon the top of the highest hills. 

The fourth district rises out of the sandstone country, 
and consists of bolder and loftier, but rounded hills, 
of limestone conglomerate, not cemented, but loose, and 
the acclivities of the hills are covered with greensward, in 
the centre of which is Khan 'Ishr. 

Beyond, to the Baziyan hills, is a country of red sands 
and sandstones, which, towards the centre, dip to the 
S. 40 W., and after to the N. 40 E., which latter dip to 
the hills. The sandstones were often conglomerates, 
sometimes blueish, with white quartz. 

Baziyan Mountains. — ^To the north of Derbeud-i- 
Bazlyan, or the Pass of Baziyan, the direction of the hills 


is to the west of Dorth about 20^ They are called the 
Khalkhalan, and bound the plain of Koi Sanjak* to the 

To the south of the Derbend, the ridge is continued 
in a straight line S. 20** E., and crossed by the Der- 
bend- i-Basterrah, beyond which the ridge continues in 
the same line, assumes the name of Kara Dagh, and 
becomes well wooded. Kara Dagh increases in height as 
it goes south. It is crossed by a third pass, called Sejh- 
irmeh, or Ladders. The Zengheneh comes out west from 
the Kara Dagh, below the pass of Basterrah, but, turning 
south, becomes as lofty as the Kara Dagh, to which it 
forms a parallel ridge. 

The Baziyan rises as a bold and rocky mass, about 400 
feet above the plain. The strata consist of hard compact 
limestone, containing species of Tra^helipoda, more parti- 
cularly Conus, Voluta, Pyrula, Fusus, and Cerithium; 
and of Conchifera ; Pectenides, Ostracea, and Cardiacea. 
From the preponderance of the genera Cerithium, Conus, 
and Pecten, although specimens were with difficulty 
obtained, it is probable that this limestone was the repre- 
sentative of the Calcaire grossier of Paris ; at all events 
that it is a tertiary formation. 

The beds dip on the west to the S. 40° W. On the 
east, the hills are cut off abruptly, in some places in a 
rude escarpment, but in others the beds have an opposed 
dip, and become afterwards curved and contorted. 

The parallel of the Derbend-i-Bazlyan is the line of 
watershed, between the waters flowing into the 'Athim 
and Diyalah rivers, and the Altun Kupri river; and the 

• Rich spells the Koi of Mr. Renouard, Keuy ; it is more generally 
Written Coit, or Coit. 


opening through the chain which forms the Derbend is a 
break, or solution in continuity, occurring at the point 
where the chain would have been exposed to the greatest 
tension, and which forms the culminating point of the 
base of the range. 

The valley of Tabbespi is separated from that of Aleh 
by another range of limestone, of similar character, which 
presents bold acclivities to the east, with some caverns. 
Beyond this is the Mazaragh Dagh, bounded by the plain 
of Derghezin, or of Suleimaniyah, to the west. 

Mazaragh Ddgh. — ^This chain is composed of tertiary 
limestones, presenting the same fossils, and the same 
mineralogical characters, as that of Baziyan, only on the 
eastern side of the hills, they become argillaceous, some- 
what bituminous and non-fossiliferous. The Mazaragh 
Dagh to the north becomes the mountain of Se'rt, broke 
through by the river of Altun Kupri, or Little Zab, and 
continued above Kalka Simmak towards Koi Sanjak, 
under the denomination of Kashkar. 

Derghezin Plain. — The plain of SuleYmaniyeh is 
covered with humus, greensward, or pebbles ; where rock 
can be detected, however, it is an argillaceous limestone, 
or, as near the town of Suleimaniyeh, a sandstone, remark- 
able for its tendency to a rhombic cleavage. 

Azmir Dagh. — The hills immediately west of Sulei- 
maniyeh are called Azmir D&gh, or Jiozeh hills. The 
culminating point is to the north, and is called Pir Omar 
Gudrtin, a hill remarkable fbr its height, and for its rudely 
pointed or conical form. The formations consist of liidu- 


rated limestones, apparently chalk. Fossils are very rare, 
bnt impressions of Ammonites are common, and Belem- 
nites not infrequent. I also obtained some Terebratulae, 
and large Ostracea. 

Shdhrazur Plain. — The plain of Shahrazur, Sheri- 
bazar, or Surojik, is between Azmir Dagh and the 
Avroman hills, which latter also bound the district of 
Suleimaniyeh and Shahrazur, to the south. 

Awomdn Mountains and Zagros. — ^The Avroman moun- 
tains are remarkable for their altitude, and their bold 
rocky and conical forms, and are, during a large portion 
of the year, capped with snow. They are composed of 
rocks of diallage, serpentine and eupotide, with some 
actynolitic and homblendic formations. The serpen- 
tines stretch down into the plain of Shahrazur, which is 
hence uneven and broken up, presenting many varieties 
of metamorphic rocks, but much disintegrated, or covered 
with wood. 

To the south, the Avroman and Zagros of the ancients 
appear to be the same ; but to the north, the plain or 
valley of Shamiyan, having a direction of from N. 10 W. 
to S. 30 E., separates the western from an eastern chain, 
which preserves its altitude and alpine characters, to the 
sources of the little Zab, where it is called Kandil. 

At the same time, at the head of the Sheribazar 
country, a group of mountains called Sersir, advances 
from the Avroman to the Azmir range, consisting of 
serpentine rocks, which tilt up, and bear upon their 
summits or acclivities indurated chalk formations. 


District of Altun Kupri River. — In proceeding north- 
ward from Sule'imaniyeh, the Mazaragh Dagh, becoming 
the Abdheram Dagh, exhibits at its base a formation of 
carburetted marles, accompanied by thin seams of iron- 
stone, which soon attain a considerable developement, 
and occupy the head of the valley beyond the Pir Omar 
Gudrun, which forms the line of watershed parallel to the 

The Se'rt mountain succeeds to the Abdheram Dagh, 
and is composed of limestones, beneath which are red 
sandstones and jasper rock, reposing upon the carbona- 
ceous marles, dipping 15** to the west. The latter forma- 
tions occupy the whole of the base of the mountain, and 
the plain between it and the Kamshukah hills, which 
form the continuation of the Pir Omar Gudrun, and con- 
sist of limestone, dipping at a very slight angle of incli- 
nation to the west, and hence towering almost perpendi- 
cularly above the plain. 

Kamshukah, — ^The carbonaceous measures consist, 
near Kamshukah, of blue and blueish-green marles, brown 
sandstones, often rhomboidal, with impressions of mono- 
cotyledonous plants ; of marles, ironstone, and sandstone, 
and of carburretted marles and ironstones, with veins of 
carbonate of lime. The dip is variable, but generally 
westerly, at a slight angle of inclination. 

In the valley of the Altun Kupri river was a conglo- 
merate of serpentine, diallage, and hornblende rocks, 
with pebbles of quartz, Lydian stone, jasper, limestones, 
and others. 

The mountain of Kamshukah loses its rugged gran- 
deur, as it approaches the Altun Kupri river, and is 


prolonged to the north-west by a low undulating ridge of 
maries. Beyond the village of Kal'at Khan, it again 
becomes a lofty and bold mountain, which throws out ridges 
that advance across, and ultimately shut up the valley. 

The valley of Kal'at (par eminence^ J^ and Kal'at Khan) 
is occupied by ironstones, bituminous maries, with 
powerful veins of calcareous spar, and green-coloured and 
ferruginous maries. 

The hills are formed of indurated limestones, which, 
to the north-east, tower up in needles and fantastic forms. 

Kdshkdr Hills. — In the Kashkar, beds of coarse 
sandstones, maries, and red sands, alternate on the east 
side, twice between the base and the summit of the 
range, where a calcareous freestone forms vertical clifis. 
The red sands are sometimes calcareous, forming maries ; 
at others, siliceous and aggregated, as a coarse red 

On the western acclivity of the Kashkar, the sand- 
stones predominate, and are covered, in a second and 
lower ridge, by cretaceous maries, which again alternate 
with a remarkable brecciated rock ; and a little beyond, 
this contain beds of snow-white granular gypsum, 12 to 
20 feet in thickness. 

Kdi Sanjdk. — ^This leads the way to an expansive 
country of red sands and sandstones, containing occa- 
sionally beds of gypsum, and which extends to the west 
as far as the Khalkhalan, the north-westerly prolongation 
of the Baziyan. 

*** A florry village, where is now a Tell, but no cattle. 



On this plain, the brown sandstones are often seen to 
decompose in spheroids, which are very much flattened 
in their smaller diameters, and are often of yast size. 

Little Zdb River. — In our latest maps of Western 
Asia, the little Zab is made to join the Tahiti of Kinneir 
(Tayiat) at Koi Sanjak, while another tributary flows into 
the same river at Altun Kuprf. This system is erroneous. 
The Tayiat is the only river, strictly so speaking. All 
the rest are mere rivulets, and the rivulet of Koi Sanjak 
flows into the Tayiat at Altun Kupri. Throughout its 
course, the Tayiat is called after the inhabited places it 
flows past ; as Tayiat ChaY, Seruk Chai, Koi' Chai, and 
Altun Chai. 

Hamdm Mfik. — ^The rude mountain of Hamllm Mfik 
bounds Koi Sanjak to the north. It is composed, on its 
southern acclivities, from below upwards, of limestones, 
red sandstones, conglomerate, red sands, red sandstone, 
and limestones in powerful beds, dipping at an angle of 
from 20 to 30*" to the south-east. 

On the summit of the mountain is a formation of 
coarse brown sandstone, or grit, containing abundant 
Ostracites, and some marine bivalves, also serpulites in 
cylindrical bundles, which, when fractured, presented the 
interior cavities of the serpulse, lined with small pyra- 
midal crystals of quartz. In the same rock, there occurred 
flattened masses, like a congeries of fronds of Algae, covered 
with the tubes of a Spio. 

On the northern side of the range, and beneath the 
Ostracite sandstone, was an extended formation of car- 


bonaceous marles, in which, after a patient research, I 
for the first time detected a shell, wliich belonged to a 
fresh-water genus, namely, Cyrena. 

To the north of Hamam Muk, the country consists of 
sandstones and limestones, forming two parallel ridges of 
hills, which course from S. E. to N. W., and generally 
display at their base carbonaceous marles, while the inter- 
vening valley is occupied by ridges and hills of cretaceous 

The author's journey through Kurdistan extended to 
the pass of Bomaspan, in the parallel of Erbil, by which 
he left the mountain-country, to descend upon the plain ; 
and at this parallel, as in that of Baziyan, and at Al'kosh, 
the outliers are formed of red saliferous sands, gypsiferous 
red sandstones, and coarse brown sandstones, with occa- 
sional local assemblages of hills of circumscribed deposits 
of pebbly conglomerates. 

General Features, — The most remarkable feature in 
the rocks of Kurdistan is the invariable compactness and 
hard texture of the limestone rocks, but this only obtains 
in the mountain districts ; for as the indurated limestone 
of Rum-Kal'ah, on Euphrates, becomes a soft chalk, with 
many fossils, so the limestone of the westerly ranges of 
the Persian Apennines becomes, on the plain of Musul, 
soft, pliable, and redolent with the shells of Trachelo- 
podous MoUusca, and Monomyairous and Dimyairous 

Connewion with European Rocks. — In effecting an 
approximation between the rocks of Kurdistan and the 


supra-cretaceous formations of Europe, we shall find a 
few points presenting very remarkable analogies, where 
there is so much geographical remoteness. 

Swiss Lignites. — ^Thus, for example, we have in Kur- 
distan two distinct carbonaceous and bituminous forma- 
tions; one associated with sandstones, slate-clays, and 
ironstones, and intercalated between the chalk and the 
cretaceous limestones; and another aflfording earthly 
lignites, petroleum, and naphtha, and associated with 
fresh-water limestones, marles, and gypsum. The first 
appears to be represented by the Terrain mamo charbon- 
neua? of Alex. Brongniart, the geological position of 
which is between the Clastic Thallasic, or plastic clay ; 
and the Tritonian Thallasic, or limestone, with shells of 
TrachelopodousMoUuscaf^Ca/eazV^^ro^^e^, London clay). 
The second appears, equally distinctly, to be a formation 
analogous to, although by no means identical with, the 
Swiss lignites of the Palseotherian group of rocks. This 
lignite, according to Mr. Voltz, is associated with gypsum 
in the Sundgau ; and the piciform, or pitchlike lignite of 
Heeren, in the Tyrol, which is still more closely analogous, 
is associated with marles, and bituminous limestone, 
containing Cyclades, Lymnae, Planorbes, &c. 

It is a rather curious fact, however, that the minerals 
of the Soissonnois lignite, which belongs to the Tritonian 
group, but which alternates with the Palaeotherian forma- 
tions, (Weissenau, near Mayence,) and which are, 
according to Brongniart, succin, gypsum, Websterite ; 
earthy-brown phosphorite, celestine, hyaline quartz, and 
pyrites ; are almost all met with in the formations of Tuz 
Khurma-tu, and which belong to the Paleeotherian group. 

254 OEOL06Y OF 

Cydade Limestone. — ^The Cyclade limestone is gene- 
rally known on the Continent, as the Lymnic limestone ; 
but on Euphrates, and in Kurdistan, where it occupies 
tracts of country, which are as continents compared with 
the lake-like extent of the same formation in Europe. 
The almost only prevalent and general shells belong to 
the genus Cyclas. 

Tttbvlar Cavities. — ^The multitude of tubular and 
cylindrical cavities, always sinuous, which abound in this 
limestone in Europe, as well as in the East, appeared to 
AL Brongniart to indicate the passing of gas through a 
soft and viscous mass. It is curious that this structure 
should be particularly remarkable near the Abu Geger, 
and would appear to give to the phenomena of local 
chemical actions producing flames, an antiquity as great 
as to the deposition of the Cyclade limestones. Bron- 
gniart, however, had circumscribed this peculiarity in 
structure too much, when he supposed it to belong only 
to truly lacustrine Palseotherian formations, and not to 
those in which bivalve fresh-water shells are met with. 

Protean Sandstones. — ^The sands and sandstones of the 
Hamerfin, the Zenkabad, and the plains west of the ranges 
of Palseotherian and Tritonian rocks, appear to belong to 
the Protean group. There is here a great want of fossil 
remains, but they were not to be found. The sandstone 
of the Protean group is often, in Europe, red and yellow, 
or ferruginous, as at Meudon, near Paris. The Swiss 
Knau&r contains calcareous nodules, as do the Hamerun. 
Near Vevay, the same formation contains selenitic 
gypsum, as is the case at Deli Abblusi and Hawaz* The 


beds are often argillaceous, as in the eastern Pyrenees, 
or, as in the Macigno molasse, are composed of sand, lime, 
a little argil, and mica; and the same is the case in 
the formations east of Kerkuk; but, as in the sub- 
apennine hills, the Tritonian rocks, from the absence of 
the fresh-water PaJaeotherian formations, confound them- 
selves with the superior Protean rocks; so it appears, 
that in Kurdistan, the lower Protean formations alternate 
with, or anticipate, the Palseotherian group. 



Formations of the Territory of Musul. 

Chaldcean Plains. — ^The plains covered with the villages, 
and, for the most part, cultivated by Chaldaean Christians, 
to the east of Musul, are chiefly composed of red sands 
and gravel, which, when not cultivated, are covered with 
Graminse, spiny Compositae, and Leguminosae, or scented 
Labiatae (Artemisia, Thymus, Origanum, &c.) 

Pebbly Deposit — ^There occurs on the banks of the 
Zab, and for one to two miles on the plains on both 
sides, a deposit of rolled pebbles of limestone, diallage 
rock, serpentine, hornblende rock, quartzes, jaspers, and 
Lydian stone. This formation, so extensive, and at an 
elevation in places of 200 feet above the present bed 
of the river, appears at first scarcely to be of fluviatile 
origin ; other circumstances, however, point out this to 
be the case. Thus the pebbly formation on the banks 
of the Khazir, the sources of which lie much to the west 
of the central group of the Kurdistan mountains, and 
arise, indeed, chiefly from the Maklub and Ain-el-Safrah 
hills, are composed of limestone, and their associated 
flinty slates, only. It is the same with regard to the con- 
glomerates on which repose the walls of Nineveh, which 
contain, like the pebbly deposit of Tigris, only one pebble 
of diallage or hornblende rock, to one thousand of lime- 


stone. Now, had the local pebbly deposits of the Chal-< 
dsean plain owed their origin to any general catastrophe, 
a conglomerate of similar characters would have occurred 
in each various position. 

The conglomerate on which the walls of Nimrud (the 
Larissa of Xenophon, and noticed by the Greek general 
as having the plinths of the wall of stone,) are built, is 
like that of the Zab, which, from the elevation it occurs 
at, may not improbably have owed its origin to the 
breaking-down of a dyke, or of some natural resistance 
in the KurdistUn mountains. 

Mustd Marble. — ^To the west of Musul the country 
is occupied by rocky formations, which rise in a gently- 
undulating territory out of the plain of Mesopotamia. 
The formations in the immediate vicinity of Musul con- 
sist of solid beds of massive, compact, and granular cal- 
careous gypsum, in horizontal strata, and non-fossiliferous. 
This is the rock which is so extensively quarried as Musul 
marble. The colour is blueish-white, but sometimes 
snow-white, and sometimes blueish-gray. The gypsum 
is not separated by fissures, like that of Paris, and is less 
slaty than that of Kerkuk. 

Cerithia Limestone. — Superimposed upon the gypsum 
is a thin formation of coarse friable limestone, abounding 
in shells, among which the genera Cerithium, Murex, 
Fusus, Pleurotoma, Pecten, Pectunculus, Cardium, Venus^ 
Cytherea, Lucina, and Tellina, have their representatives. 
This is the most shelly limestone I have met with in the 
East ; it is the common building-stone of Musul. The 
walls of Nineveh (the Mespila of Xenophon, 17 miles 



from Nimrud, which is the same as Besen, and Larissa,) 
and of Yarum Jah (castle near Mespila, where the Greeks 
halted,) were by the general and historian said to have 
been constructed, as far as regards the plinths, of a stone 
full of shells. Leunclavius having opined that these 
shells might have been sculptured on the walls, a deal 
of learned trifling has been wasted upon this subject. 

Maries. — Above the fossiliferous limestone is a bed, 
nine inches in thickness, of non-fossiliferous argillaceous 
marles, highly dendritic, and resembling the shiste hap- 
pante of Montmartre. Above this is a coarse mass of 
green-coloured marles. 

Sulphur Springs. — On the banks of Tigris, and at the 
foot of the cliffs of Mar Gabriel, belonging to the same 
formation as described above, are several thermal springs, 
giving off hydrosulphuric acid, and depositing sulphur in 
abundance. They are six in number, of which three are 
large and copious. The united streams form a rivulet, 
the waters of which are milk-white from the quantity of 
precipitated sulphur. According to Saussure, 100 cubic 
inches of water can absorb 253 cubic inches of hydrosul- 
phuric acid gas. In this case, the superabundant gas is 
constantly given off from the water ; the decomposition 
of the gas by the oxygen of the air, combining with 
the hydrogen, causes the precipitation and deposition of 
sulphur, which extends to many hundred yards beyond 
the springs. 

The temperature of No. 1, was 77°; No. 2, 77.5*; 
No. 3, 77.5"; No. 4, 78' Fahr. in the soU; air, in the 
shade, 57^ The temperature iu the well of DiLmlamagfli 


in Nineveh (Thisbe's well of Mr. Kich) presents, from 
Mr. Rich's observations, compared with my own, a pretty 
constant temperature, of 66°, which corresponds closely 
to what the mean of the summer heats and winter 
extremes might be supposed to be, and gives to those 
springs an excess of 11* over the mean annual tempera* 
ture. They are much resorted to for cutaneous diseases, 
and considered as warm springs, although in summer 
time their temperature is often inferior to that of the 
ambient air. A red byssus was common in some of the 

Seramum HiUs. — ^The gypsum formation extends in a 
direction of south 10° west, across the plain of Mungfi- 
bah, south of Musul, and forms an undulating territory, 
crowned by the church of Al Ghelani, or of the Antelopes, 
and beyond which rise the low hills which reveal the 
monastery of St. Elias, and Sei*amum, a country palace 
of the Pasha of Musul. 

The section of these hills at the river-side exhibits» 
superiorly, the limestone or crag similar to that near 
Musul, but here attaining a great thickness, whereas at 
Musul it is only from nine inches to a foot deep ; here it 
occurs in beds of from three to ten feet, and is exten- 
sively quarried. Beneath are powerfal beds of gypsum, 
which again repose upon marles of very variable cha- 
racter, being chiefly argillo-bituminous, but also sablonous 
and ferruginous; springs depositing sulphur, bitumen, 
and carburet of iron, in small quantities, occur at the base 
of the cliffs. 

Sulphur ilfme^.—- Eight miles from Musul are the 

R 2 


sulphur mines; deposits of that mineral, wrought by 
galleries worked in open day in the face of cliffs. The 
rocks consist of crag, or marly and friable fossiliferous 
limestone, of coarse gypsum, and of hemi-crystalline and 
nodular marles, containing a bed of granular and hemr- 
crystalline sulphur, about seven feet in thickness. 

The stratification is very indistinct, superiorly curved 
by faults and fissures, but in the mines the rock dips 5^" 
to the south-west. 

The sulphur is compact, fine, granular, and hemi- 
crystalline ; or blueish-gray with calc spar intermixed. It 
occurs also crystallized in rhombic octahedrons, of a 
beautiful citrine or of a rich olive-green colour. There 
also occurs sulphate of strontian, in acicular prisms, and 
in terminal rhombic prisms. 

Hamdm AIL — ^To the south, the gypsum predomi- 
nates, but is accompanied by the inferior bitumino-argil- 
laceous marles, from which apparently issue the fountains 
evolving petroleum and hydrosulphuric acid, at Hamam 

' Usldn Hills. — Nearly opposite to the sulphur mines, 
and between Nineveh and Nimrud, at a place called 
*Uslan, rocky formations are denuded from the Chaldaean 
plain. They consist of coarse limestones, dipping from 
5"* to 10** to the south-west, and support marles and coarse 
cavernous gypsum ; and further to the east these beds 
are covered by red sandstones and sands. In no cases 
are these gypsums so coai*seIy granular and friable as at 
Montmartre near Paris, or at Abu Bara on Euphrates. 


Territory of 'Urfah (Osrhoene). 

City of ' Urfdh. — ^The city of 'Urfah, so interesting in 
an historical point of view, is not less so from its geo- 
logical relations, being built at the point where the hilly 
and rocky regions terminate, at the rich and fertile plains 
of Haran in Mesopotamia ; and in the hills themselves, 
the thirsty but not ungrateful chalk soil, is succeeded by 
black and barren rocks of plutonic origin. 

Plains of Pliitanic Mocks. — ^The feldspatho-pyroxenic 
rocks, consisting of basalts, dolerites, and s})ilites, with 
some vesicular and cineritious rocks, form to the east and 
north-east an extended country of stony masses with 
rocky ravines, but so distributed, that when looked upon 
on a large scale, they appear to form almost a continuous 
upland, but in reality they constitute a rocky and diffi- 
cultly-accessible country. 

Cones of Pseudo- Volcanoes. — In the chalk plain to 
the north, about 10 to 15 miles from 'Uriah, the same 
formations rise in several distinct cones, having an alti- 
tude of from 500 to 800 feet above the surrounding 
country, out of which they arise in almost total geological 
and geographical isolation : with these are also associated 
some flat-summited hills of the same formation. 

Hillj/ ranges of Volcanic Mocks. — ^The rocks of the 
feldspatho-pyroxenic series again make their appearance 
on approaching Seruj, and form low ranges of undulating 
hills, stretching nearly north and south, and extending 


in a south-westerly direction to near the banks of the 
river Euphrates. 

Clialk Formatio7i. — With these exceptions, the whole 
of the country extending between Euphrates and 'Urfah, 
from Bir to the south, and Someisat to the north, in- 
cluding the Nimrud chain of hills, is composed of the 
upper and lower chalk formation. 

Banks of Euphrates. — ^Along Euphrates to the east, a 
few miles north of Bir, the soft white chalk is succeeded 
by a formation of indurated chalk or compact limestone, 
which reposes upon soft chalk, and rises on a table-land 
about 800 to 1000 feet above the bed of the river. This 
table-land extends, with some, but not extensive, inter- 
ruptions, by Rumkal'ah to Narsfs. 


Narsis and Eidlehazdr. — Five miles north of Narsfs, a 
breccia deposit covers the chalk formation, and at Eidle- 
bazar, a mile beyond this, the feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks 
form a band of about a mile in width, slaty in their struc- 
ture, and abounding in garnets and titaniferous iron. To 
the north, the soft and hard chalk beds alternate in strata 
of a few feet in thickness, rising at high angles of in- 
clination in hills about 600 feet above the bed of the 

Someisat — From this point to Someisat, low and 
regular hills of soft and fissile chalk, formed chiefly by 
denudation, occupy the banks of the river to the west, 
with occasional low alluvial plains to the east. The hills 
are I'ounder, and the acclivities preisent a remarkably 


uniform slope near the river; while in the interior, conical 
and round summits are ultimately succeeded by flat 
summits, which only form successive parts originating 
by denudation from a plateau or table-land, such as in 
this case extends to the east at an altitude of about 500 
feet above the river from Someisat to within nearly 12 
miles of 'Urfah. The beds are, however, in some places 
slaty and argillaceous, and in others deeper and more 
uniform, compact. The former alternate also with fos- 
siliferous beds, which are more rare in the softer chalk. 

^Urfdh and Hardn, — Proceeding from Someisat to 
'Urfah, the country loses its simple undulatory character, 
being broken up by volcanic ridges and cones, after 
which there are deep valleys, producing olives, grapes, 
and cotton, divided by long parallel ranges of hills, com- 
posed of chalk, capped by basalts, until, to the east, the 
basalts predominate, and occupy the whole surface-soil 
of the upland, as far as to the plains of Mesopotamia ; to 
the south, the .valleys open to receive the city of 'Urfah; 
while to the east, the chalk formation becomes in the 
hills of Nimrud once more a compact limestone form- 
ation, at the foot of which extends the rich plain of 
Haran, composed of ancient alluvia, so fertile, and, 
although well cavered with villages, yet so inadequately 
populated, that the fellahs cultivate the same piece of 
ground often only once in three years. The season for 
harvest is, however, short, and the locust much dreaded. 


Geology of Northern Kuriustan. 

Rdbah Ormuz Hills. — ^Tlie hills of Al Kosli and Rabah 
Ormuz are composed of indurated limestone, of similar 
minemlogical characters, and zoological and geological 
relations, as the Baziyan range ; and they outlie the ranges 
of Northern, as the Baziyan do those of Southern, 

The general direction of the chain is fi*om south-east 
to north-west The summits are rounded, and the accli- 
vities gentle to the south, and precipitous to the north ; 
the only exception to this is in a break in the hills, where 
the monastery of Rabah Onnuz is built, and which renders 
that spot remarkable from a distance on the Chaldaean 
plain. The strata are exceedingly flexuous and contorted 
on the acclivities, although more horizontal at the summit. 
The chain does not rise upwards of 500 feet above the 

At the foot of the Rabah Ormuz hills, are red sand- 
stones in low parallel ranges, having a similar direction 
as the chain, and dipping to the south-west. These sand- 
stones came across the plain to Tigris, at Bashak, 29 miles 
north of Musul. 

At Bahdinan*, 37 miles from Musul, the chain of 
Rabah Ormuz lowers to the level of the soil, and is sepa- 
rated by the plain of Kirei-pa, about six miles in width, 
from the Jebel 'Abiat (Arabic), or Chia-spi (Kurd), both 

* *' Men of good faith," the name of a tribe of Yezidi Kurds, who 
have many propitiator}' monuments, erected to the evil spirit, in this 


signifyiDg white hills, and which at this point is formed 
of very curved and contorted beds of limestone. 

Dvleib Hills. — Opposite to the Rabah Omiiiz hills, 
and as a prolongation of these, from which they are sepa- 
rated by the bed of the Rubah Tak, are the hills of Duleib, 
formed of sandstones and of limestone conglomerate, with 
a sablo-ferruginous cement, dipping at a very high angle 
of inclination to the south-west, and supporting red sands 
and sandstones, which extend southward to the banks of 

Chid-spi Hills. — The pass of Turk Shah, which leads 
from the plains to Zakho, through the Chia-spi, furnishes 
a good section of that chain. The rocks on the southern 
side of the hills dip to the south, on the northern to the 
north. The succession of strata is, to the south, from 
below upwards, limestones, marles, limestone conglome- 
rate, a breccia of siliceous pebbles and limestone pebbles ; 
limestones, and finally sandstone rocks, which occupy the 
base of the hills, and stretch into the plains below. 

On the north side is the same succession of rocks, 
only that the siliceous breccia is much more extensively 
developed, and the sandstones which succeed at the foot 
of the Chia-spi form a distinct range of hills, covered with 
M'ood, and dip to the north, till near Zakho, where they 
are succeeded by hills 200 feet high, composed of 
powerful beds of sandstone conglomerate, with pebbles of 
various characters 

Zakho. — Zakh6 is built on a similar conglomerate, and 
is islanded by the] Kh^bur ; and the bridge called Jisr 


Delf-8u, or mad river bridge, is carried over the river upon 
the same conglomerate. The rivulet of Zakh6 itself flo^vs 
through the pass, coming from the Chia-spi, over succes- 
sive ledges of rock, till it is received in a small channel, 
scarcely three feet in width, from which it precipitates 
itself over a fall, upwards of thirty feet in height. 

The Khabur and the Hazil rivers both bring down 
rocks of serpentine and diallage from the central nucleus 
of the Kurdish mountains. 

To the north-west, the Chia-spi terminates in a ridge 
of nearly horizontal sandstone, which advances to Tigris, 
and reappears on the western side of the river. 

Jebel Jvdi. — ^The plain of Zakho, north of Chia-spi, is 
bounded by the Jebel Judf, which consists of two lofty 
ranges, the northern of which advances upon Tigris, north 
of Jezirah. As the Chia-spi, to the south-east, amalga- 
mate themselves with the Rabah Ormtiz hills, so the Jebel 
Judi, approaching the Chia-spi, block up the valley of the 
Khabur, and enclose the country of the Nestorian Chris- 
tians, which, with the Jebel Judi themselves, remains yet 
to be explored. 

At the western foot of Jebel Judi, where the hills 
approach Tigris, sandstones, and limestone conglomerate 
with coarse marles, come down to the water's edge, and 
are, on the western side, capped (at an altitude of 698 
feet above Jezirah) by feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, chiefly 
basalts and augite rock. 


Rock Formations of Taurus. 

Plain of Jezirah. — Jezirah on Tigris* appears, by 
barometrical admeasurement, to be 842 feet above the 
level of the Persian Gulf, and the plain above averages 
a mean elevation of 1540 feet, or 698 feet above Jezirah. 

The acclivities of the hills are occupied by sandstones 
and conglomerates, up to within about a hundred feet of 
the summit, when a formation of feldspatho-pyroxenic rock 
exhibits itself in stony masses, and with an approach to a 
spathose structure. 

These feldspatho-pjrroxenic rocks occupy the whole 
extent of the plain hence to Tel Sachin, a distance of 39 
miles, and consist of basalts, basanites (basalts with regu- 
larly-disseminated augite), titaniferous basalt, and dolerites. 

The Baarem Hills. — ^The plain is bounded to the north 
by the Baarem hills, of whicTi the culminating point rises 
about 800 feet above the plain. These hills are formed 
of the same series of rocks, admitting probably of much 
diversity; but the author had not an opportunity of 
exploring them. 

Beyond the parallel of Tel Sakhan, the feldspatho- 
pyroxenic rocks disappear, and give place, in the hilly 
range, to compact limestones, on an advancing knoll of 
which stands the castle of Hallilah, a predatory chieftain 
of Kurds; while the plain lowers, and is occupied by a 
fertile limestone soil, for the most part cultivated, and 
covered with vegetable humus of considerable depth in 
the neighbourhood of Nisibin. 

* Also called Jezirah Ibn 'Omar, or Jezirah 'Omaniyeh, '^The 
Island of the Sons of Omar." 


The Baareni, or mountains of Masius, advance in a 
westerly direction to the parallel of Nisibin ; they then 
cur\'e to the northward by Dara, to Mardin, when they 
turn again to the westward, and bound a very level and 
low plain (having an average elevation of 1300 feet), to 
the north. These hills consist of granular and indurated 
limestone, in curved and contorted beds, and dipping in 
various directions, but for the most part to the south and 
south-west ; to the north-east they border the country of 
Tebel Tur, yet unexplored. 

Sinjdr Hills. — ^To the south the plain is bounded, first 
by the Babel hills, low rounded hills, apparently of tertiary 
sandstones, which appear to form the Mesopotamian 
continuation of the Chia-spi, or Jebel 'Abiat, in Kurdistan. 
Further westward and a little to the south, are the hijls of 
Sinjar, which appear to have somewhat similar geognostic 
relations ; and lastly, these are united by the isolated hill 
of Kuka to the range of Abdel Hassiz, advancing a little 
to the noith-west, and tenanted by the Millis Turkoman 
tribe. These districts are yet unexplored. 

Ddrd. — At Dara (an interesting ruin of ancient times), 
the limestones are fossiliferous, and presented numerous 
shells, belonging more particularly to the genera Ostrea, 
Conus, and Pecten, but also Fusus, Pleurotoma, Venus, 
Cytherea and Cardium. 

Mdrdm. — At Mardin the same sandstone is capped, 
for about a hundred feet, with a straw-yellow, friable lime- 
stone, abounding in Nummulites, and which also occupies 
the summit of Kal'at Marah, and the Deir-i-Yacub* hills, 

* Monastery of St. Jaine^. 


in the same neighbourliood. In the valley of the Deir-i- 
Saffran, or the Yellow Monastery, the residence of Abu- 
el-Faraj, three miles east of Mardin, all the limestones 
present, however, nearly the same deep-yellow tint, but 
it is only on the hills above, that a predominance of 
peculiar forms of Cephalopodous Mollusca are met with. 

To the north of Mardin, the next range of hills dis- 
plays carbonaceous marles at the foot of the hills ; and 
below, the Dara and the Nummulitic limestone. 

Crossing this range, the upper formation of chalk is 
met with, immediately beyond the carbonaceous measures. 
It presents a friable laminar rock, of a buff-yellow colour, 
and is remarkably redolent with botryoidal haematites. 
These haematites are frequently hollow, when the cavities 
are filled with calcareous spar ; they are in some places so 
abundant as to form beds. 

At Khan Kajurin (25 miles), the yellow fissile and 
upper chalk comes in contact with white cretaceous and 
lower chalk, and contains flints and Echinides, and which 
occupies the country to the north, as far as to within a 
few miles of Khan Aghpur. The country of the lower 
chalk presents less lofty hills, and the acclivities are more 
gentle, and the valleys more open, than in the country of 
the upper chalk series. 

Plateau of Diydr-Bekr. — Beyond Aghpur, and the 
artificial mound and village of Tospen Tepeh, a table-land 
of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks extends 12 miles to the 
north, to Diyar-Bekr*; and 16 miles beyond this, to 
Sherbet Khan. The plateau has a mean elevation of 

* The tents of Bekr. 


1000 feet, and undulates very little, being for the most 
part an uniform flat, cut up to the east by Tigris ; some- 
what irregular near Diyar-Bekr, intersected by two or 
three tributaries (Charokl-su, &c.) to Tigris, and rising in 
the west, in the lofty hills of Kara-dji& Dagh, which 
appear to present a nearly similar constitution. 

The rocks on the plain exhibit the same mineralogical 
characters as the table-land of Jezirah ; basalts, basalts 
with disseminated augite, basalts with titaniferous iron, 
dolerites, and some spilites, or rocks with nodular cavities 
of calcareous spar. 

To the south of Charoki-su, the basalts exhibit some low 
facades, which present an irregular and imperfect columnar 
structure. These rocks appear to abound also in Iserine 
(titaniate of iron and uranium), as the mud and sands on 
the banks of Tigris are almost covered with this black 
magnetic iron-sand. 

Limestone Ranges south of Argandh.'-^Two miles 
beyond Sherbet Khan, the doleritie rocks are succeeded 
by compact granular limestones, which rise in low hills, 
forming at this point three distinct ranges; the two 
southerly ranges following a direction of from S. E. to 
N. W., while the northerly range sweeps round to join 
with the second range. The limestones present few shells, 
chiefly Cones and Ostracites, and some impressions of 
Pectenides. They also abound in large veins of calcareous 
spar, and have generally an anticlinal line, the strata 
being much contorted. 

District of Argandh. The town of Arganah stands 
upon a bluff mountain, almost isolated from the sur- 


rounding country, having steep acclivities, and capped by 
a still more precipitous rock. Behind it, or N. 3* W., is 
another mount of similar forms, called Ali Dagh. That 
of Arganah is called Kal'at Dagh, and both attain an 
elevation of nearly 3500 feet. The town being, by ba- 
rometrical measurement, 3074, and the chapel of Dul 
Kapha! is nearly 400 feet above it. 

The valley between Kal'at Dagh and the first ridge of 
limestone to the south, is occupied by brecciated and 
quartzose sandstones, alternating with marles, and above 
this formation are marles, which are yellow and cream- 
coloured on the acclivity of Kal'at Dagh, but become 
carbonaceous on the Ali Dagh. On both hills, the 
marles are covered by a limestone, containing Ostracea, 
Cones, and Nummulites. 

Fi'om Kal'at Dagh, a low range of hills, consisting of 
red-coloured marles and limestones, stretches east. 

District of Carbonaceom Maries and Sandstones. — ^To 
the north of Arganah, as far as to the banks of Tigris, the 
country is occupied by sandstones, marles, and limestones, 
disrupted and altered by dikes of diallage rock. The 
sandstones are earthy, friable, often rhomboidal, and in 
their beds dipping mostly to the south ; they contained 
beds that were highly carbonaceous, and others that were 

Between Ali Dagh and Tigris, there are four dykes 
of diallage rock, the first three not above 20 feet in 
width, the fourth upwards of 300 feet. These dykes 
course from west to east. Throughout, they have broken 
up the beds of the surrounding rocks, and altered their 
character where in contact. The sandstones are converted 


into jaspers, which were of three kinds, one very beautiful, 
red and green ; the second, a porcelain jasper ; the third, 
fissile and ferruginous. The carbonaceous beds were 
converted into a stone coal, with a vitreous fracture, dark 
shining surface, but non-bituminous; these deposits of 
carbonaceous measures, in contact with diallage rocks, are 
so frequent in this district, more especially to the north 
of Tigris, that they lend to it one of its peculiar features, 
often occurring high up, on the steep acclivities of hills, 
or in deep ravines, which are here very frequent, and from 
their jet and glossy blackness, visible and remarkable at 
great distances. The ferruginous sandstones are converted 
into iron-gray or red rock, and the limestones are also 
metamorphic. Beyond the fourth diallage dyke, capped 
with tilted-up carbonaceous beds, is a formation of shistose 
argillaceous limestone, and of flagstones, forming a small 
group of hills, which extend to Tigris. 

Beyond Tigris, a mountain country is composed of 
powerful dykes of diallage rock and euphotides, some- 
times altered in their characters. The diallage rocks are 
also often crumbly or ferruginous, generally compact and 

Traversed, disrupted, and tilted up, or overthrown by 
these dykes, are powerful beds of altered limestones, of 
jaspers, and sandstones, and of anthracitous measures ; one 
of these diallage dykes, coursing nearly from west to east, 
occupies the summit of the first hill north of Tigris, and 
extends about 200 feet down the acclivity; another 
occupies a nearly equal extent of the central part of the 
hill, leaving between them about six hundred feet of lime- 
stones, sandstones, and carbonaceous measures. There is 
little diversity in these formations, till near Ma'den Kapur. 


McHden Kapur^ or Copper Mines. — ^The mountains 
around the copper mines may be estimated to have a gene- 
ral elevation of from 4000 to 4500 feet ; Ma'den being, 
by barometrical measurement, 3408 feet, and Tigris flows 
about 800 feet below. These mountains are, Mihrab, 
west of Ma'den ; Magharat, " the hill of caves," east of 
Ma'den, containing the principal mines; Puleah Dagh, 
north ; Koras Dagh, N. E. ; Ziaret, or Musah Dagh, N. E. 

Arganah Dagh (Kal'at Dagh) bears, from summit of 
Mihrab, S. 40 E., and Kara-djia Dagh due south. 

From Kal'at Dagh, the snow-clad summits of Dagh 
Bosmali bore west ; Koras Dagh, N. 8 W. ; Sakus Dagh, 
N. 35 E. ; Hossein Dagh, N. E. ; Ziaret Dagh, or Musah 
Dagh (Mount of Moses), N. 55 E. 

Mi7ieralogic{d Details. — Mineralogically, the rocks at 
Ma'den Kapur consist of. Primarily, A rock of actynolite 
and quartz, fissile and veined. Secondly, A rock of 
actynolitic hornblende, (blackish-green, from external 
characters, apparently a mixture of tremolite or calcareo- 
magnesian hornblende, with calcareo-aluminous do.), with 
cerous quartz, or quartz with a waxy lustre. This rock is 
compact and uniform, like basalt, fine-grained, distinct, or 
large-grained and crystalline, like some diorites. It is also 
frequently a spilite, and contains nodules of calc spar, of 
quartz, or barytes. Thirdly, Diallage rock ; an aggregate 
of crystals of diallage; Serpentine, uniform, compact; 
Ophiolites, diallage and serpentines, and diallage and 
steashist or talc shist, intimately mixed ; and Euphotides, 
a basis of serpentine steashist or talc shist, with regularly- 
disseminated crystals of diallage. 



The presence of silicate of magnesia gives a character 
to all these mountain rocks. The hornblende is tremolitic, 
the quartz is cerous, the diallage asbestoid ; and these are 
associated with rocks having a basis of silicate of alumina, 
but in which the rival silicate is always more or less deve- 
loped. The most frequent and abundant of these is an 
argillaceous or slaty and sandy steashist, or talc shist, 
which varies in its colours according to the predominance 
of iron, of carbon, or of silicate of magnesia, or their 
absence. The most abundant are the Feroxidated varieties, 
chiefly brick-red, like the red rock of Killamey ; some- 
times ochre-red. Next in frequency are the carbonaceous 
beds, black, and more steatitic ; and after these come 
green varieties, and brown, when argillaceous, or gray, 
with paillettes of mica, and spilitic, or amygdaloidal, with 
nodules of chlorite (silicate of iron) of barytes, or calc 
spar. Veins of barytes, quartz, and calc spar, are also 
not uncommon, in the various forms of argillaceous and 
sandy steashists. 

These rocks appear all to be metamorphic ; the miners 
frequently meet with fossils, and on the Mihrab are beds 
containing abundant Cardiacea and Pectenides. They are 
also associated with sandstones and limestones. 

Geological Details. In the topographical details of the 
distribution of these rocks, the Zlforet, or Miisah Dagh, is 
found to be composed superiorly of limestone strata, which 
inferiorly alternate with red and black steashists, dipping 
to the north at an angle of from 30° to 45^ 

The hill of IVIagharat is composed of red and black 
steashists, with veins of quartz, barytes, steatite, and 


asbestos*; beds of limestone, sandstone, and of copper 
pyritesf , which latter dip at an angle of from 80"* to 40** 
and upwards to the south lO"* east. 

These formations are disrupted, and broken up by 
dikes of actjuolite rock, diallage rock, and euphotides. 

In the mountains east of Ma'den, four miles, the 
silico-magnesian rocks are accompanied, superiorly, by an 
indurated argillaceous limestone, containing abundant 
bivalve and univalve shells, more particularly Cytherea 
and Venus, and some Cones and Cerithia, and below by 
sandstones, containing large Ostracea and Pectenides. 

The mountain of Mihrab is composed, on the accli- 
vities, of red and black steashists, which contain several 
beds of compact copper pyrites, dipping N. 20° W., at an 
angle of 32" : one of these beds is 40 feet thick. Above 
these are spilites and ironshot rocks, near the summit, 
beds of limestone coursing N. 80° E., succeeded by stea- 
shists, chlorite slate, and shelly brecciated rocks. The 
summit is composed of limestone rock, which stretches 

* Asbestos is common in these rocks. It occurs in several forms : 
first, tremoliticorcalcareo-magnesian; secondly, act3n[iolitio or calcareo- 
ferruginous ; thirdly, diallagic. The first occurs in long fibres, flexible 
and elastic, unctuous to the touch, with a silky or pearly lustre, and 
white or greenish colour, and melts into a white glass. The second is 
ligniform, of a brown colour, opaque, sectile, friable, easily disinte- 
grated, and often feroxidated. The third occurs in masses or fibres 
more or less distinct, and of various shades of green^ not flexible, and 
giving a grayish-black glass in the blow-pipe. 

t There are upwards of fourteen different galleries carried into the 
rock, to work these beds of copper-ore, and the annual produce was 
said to be 160,000 maunds, or 2,250,000 lbs., upon which there is a 
further loss in the refining furnaces of from 25 to 35 per cent.; 1721 
maunds of raw m^tal yield at Ma'den 154 maunds of metal« 

s 2 


fiir down the southern acclivity, where it reposes upon 
carbonaceous steashists and highly ferruginous diallage 
rocks. The limestones contain few shells, but Cones and 
impressions of Pectens are easily procured. 

Azdrdh Ddgh, and Lake of Go)jik Groli. — ^These de- 
tails will serve to give a tolerable idea of the general 
geognostic relations of this part of Taurus, and which is 
composed of mountains variously grouped, which open 
beyond Kh^n Ojak (family inn), 10 miles north-west of 
Ma'den; into the plain of Alendah, cultivated, and covered 
with alluvial soil. Almost the last of these mountains in 
this direction is the Azarah Dagh, which rises upwards of 
1000 feet above the lake called Gorjik G61i, which is, by 
barometer, 3546 feet above the level of the sea. 

The Dawah Boini Mountains. — Beyond the lake of 
Gorjik Golf, a range of hills, called the Dawah BoYni, 
courses from south-west to north-west, and separates the 
former country from the district of Kharput. The crest 
of this range attains, by barometrical measurement, an 
altitude of 4246 feet, or about 700 feet above the lake. 
The geological structure of this chain is precisely similar 
to that of Taurus around Ma'den Kapur. The waters 
which flow from the western acclivities of the Dawah 
Bo'inl are the last north-easterly tributaries of the Diyar- 
Bekr branch of Tigris, and the waters which flow from 
the eastern acclivities of the same chain fall into the 
Murad Su, a branch of Euphrates. 

The District of Kharput. — ^The Kharput Dawassf, or 
district of Kharput, the Carcathiocerta of the Romans, 


succeeds to the Dawah Boinf, by a fine, large, and culti- 
vated plain, extending south by west, and is bounded 
to the north-east by the hills of Kosh, composed of lime- 
stone rocks, which, near the Murad Su, are bold and 
precipitous, rising about 600 feet above the plain, which 
is itself 2553 feet above the level of the sea. To the 
south, the Kosh hills diminish in height, and descend 
almost into the plain, leaving a low undulating country, 
by which another and more circumscribed plain is ap- 
proached, which extends itself, cultivated and populously 
inhabited, before a bold and almost isolated rock, bearing 
the town and castle of Kharput upon its sunmiit, at an 
altitude of 4125 feet, and about 1200 feet above the 
plain. The rock of Kharput consists of homblendic 
rocks, steashists, and steatitic quartz rock, supporting 
nearly horizontal strata of limestone. 

Plain of Kulwensh. — ^The plain of Kulwensh is ap- 
proached by a low undulating country of limestones and 
sandstones, reposing upon serpentine and diallage rocks, 
but the greater part of the plain is occupied by dolerites 
and spilites, which stretch from hence to the north-west- 
ward, and rise up to the north of Kharput into a plateau 
about 600 feet above the plain. 

A small river, coursing from south-west to north-east, 
runs through the middle of the plain, which is 13 miles 
in width, and is bounded by the hills of Khutel, composed 
of limestones, dipping at a gentle angle to the south-east, 
and reposing upon serpentines ; the general direction of 
the chain being north-east and south-west. 

HiUs of Khutel.— The hills of Khutel exhibit to the 


north, saccliRroidal and granular limestones, reposing on 
ferruginous and decomposed serpentines and diallage rock, 
which are succeeded by a district of diorites (consisting 
of white lamellar feldspar and black hornblende), which, 
highly crystalline in parts, becomes in others much more 
intimately aggregated and mixed, so as to become almost 
a basaltic rock. The formation, which is of very little 
extent (about a quarter of a mile), alters the limestones 
into a spotted friable rock, and itself decomposes into a 
sandy product*. 

Hills of Kapdn Mdden. — ^Immediately beyond this, a 
range of high hills, rising nearly a thousand feet above 
the plain, course in a direction of from south-west to 
north-east. On the south side they are composed of 
white saccharoidal or granular limestone, dipping at a 
very high angle of inclination to the south-east. This 
limestone reposes upon a formation of blue, compact, or 
granular, but slaty, limestone, which has a contempo- 
raneous dip. 

The two limestone formations repose upon mica shist 
(mica slate), which appears in the valley about a mile to 
the south of the town of Kebban, and, tilted up by gra- 
nitic rocks, rises to near the summit of the hills to the 
south-west, separating there also the superincumbent 
limestone from the granitic rocks which occupy the 
acclivities of the hills below. The most productive me- 
tallic veins that are wrought in this district, occur at or 
near the point of junction of the mica shist and the lime- 
stones, and the veins, which pursue devious directions, 

* Tbia rock contaiiis disseminated gold. 


are carried through both formations, and sometimes 
wrought in extensive natural caverns, from which they 
branch off in various directions. 

McHdm Gomush^ or Silver Mines (Kapan Ma'den).— 
The granitic rock upon which the town of Kebbfin 
(attached to the mines) is built, extends downwards to 
the banks of Euphrates, and northward rises in mountain 
masses beyond the river. Near Kebban, more particu- 
larly to the south, the formations are very various. The 
fiindamental rock is a highly-crystalline aggregate of 
quartz, feldspar, and mica, but in other places there occur 
a crystalline aggregate of large crystals of white feldspar 
(albite), upon which is superimposed an ordinary gneiss 
rock, capped by chlorite shist, through which the feld- 
spathic rock protrudes in dikes, or in unconformable and 
non-contemporaneous beds. The mica shists are also 
accompanied in localities by carbonaceous and ferruginous 
talc shists, and by chlorite schist. 

Minerdogicd Details. — ^The first metalliferous product 
that is met with, is a mineral of a homy texture, mas- 
sive, often botryoidal, and disseminated through the 
limestone. It appears to be a corneous silver (chlorure 
of silver), with an admixture of iron or ];ead> and occurs 
in dark-coloured irregular masses, like a formation of the 
same kind which overlays mines of native silver in Peru. 

Between the mica and chlorite slate and the lime- 
stones are numerous veins of argentiferous galena, a 
metallic sulphuret, containing lead, silver in small propor- 
tions, antimony and iron; and of a sulphuret of antimony 
and silver, commonly called red silver, often pulverulent 


and earthy, but sometimes compact, with an iron metallic 
lustre, of a reddish-brown and yellowish colour. 

The veins of galena and those of the antimonial poly- 
sulphuret are never in juxta-position, or commingled, but 
succeed or alternate with one another. The direction of 
the veins is also devious, both in themselves and with 
regard to one another. The preponderating course is 
from north-east to south-west, or parallel to the direction 
of the mountain rock, but the veins also traverse the 
beds at various angles. The antimonial polysulphuret is 
most often conformable, and occurs frequently in exten- 
sive deposits, probably bellies of veins. No pipe veins 
were observed. Both minerals become unproductive in 
contact with limestone, and hence the present mines 
appear to be nearly exhausted. 

The metallic minerals are accompanied by no constant 
veinstones, but by some minerals. Among these are 
steatitic clays and carbonaceous shists, which render the 
working of the mines exceedingly dangerous; for, as the 
roof is seldom propped up, and when so, in a careless 
and inefficient manner ; this soft material yields to the 
superincumbent weight, and has entailed the loss of 
many lives. The next are white steatitic clays (porce- 
lain clay), sulphate of lime, lamellar, in beds and veins, 
and highly crystalline in large drusic cavities also, 
diffused as a veinstone; Sulphate of copper in acicular 
crystals, fibrous, and amorphous, and in efflorescences; 
Arseniates of lead and of silver, white Carbonate of lead, 
and Fluate of lime, the white variety. 

The antimonial polysulphuret abounds in this district, 
and to the south of Kebbau, is met with on every hill 
at the point of junction of the crystalline rocks and the 



limestones. It is very unproductive, and yet is wrought 
both to open day, and by galleries, one of which, at a low 
level, has been carried to a depth of nearly a thousand 
yards. This is the only mine that is troubled with 

Produce. — ^The mines are now said to yield 13,000 
maunds, or 195,000 lbs. of lead ; and 400 okas, or 1 OOOlbs. 
of silver, annually ; 130 maunds, or 1950 lbs. of galena, 
now yield only six to seven lbs. of silver. The same 
quantity formerly gave as much as 20 to 24 lbs. 

District of Kirtchu. — ^The first hills north of Kapan 
Ma'den,.are composed of granite at the base, with super- 
imposed gneiss and chlorite shist. And on the northern 
acclivities, limestones, at first compact, granular, after- 
wards slaty. 

This first range is succeeded by the cultivated plain 
of Modali, beyond which the limestones are interrupted 
by basaltic dikes, in contact with which the limestones 
are compact and hard, but become fissile at a short 

Stretching up to Kirtchii, at an elevation of 2284 
feet, are nothing but chalk formations, — the same forma- 
tion having become soft, cretaceous, and containing flints, 
large Pectenides, and some Echinides. 

The valley is much intersected by deep ravines and 
water-courses, and to the north-west is bounded by hills, 
composed of alternating chalk and feldspatho-pyroxenie 
rocks, the chalk not much altered in its characters. A 
little to the north of this, the doleritic and spilitic rocks 
predominate, and occupy the summit of a table-land 


Stretching to near Gtil Dagh. A similar connexion of 
sedimentary and Plutonic rocks shows itself on the 
eastern side of the valley. 

Gul Ddgh. — ^The chalk formation becomes an indu« 
rated limestone north of Klrtchu; but a deep valley 
separates these hills from the Giil D^h* a high, almost 
conical, mountain, whose summit rises much above the 
surrounding country, and is composed of felspatho-pyro- 
xenic rocks, basalt and augite rock, with spilites and 
chalk at the base, often much altered* 

District of Arab Ke or Arab Kir. (Catch Arab.) — 
The town of Arab Kir is situate in a narrow valley, 
almost a ravine, at the eastern foot of Gul D%h, and is 
also backed by high mountains. These hills consisted at 
their base of mica shist, sometimes anthraoitous ; and 
above this a powerful mass (booft) of chalk, alternating 
with feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, but in the next range 
north-east, compact and indurated limestones rise in 
rugged and precipitous boldness, and stretch over a large 
extent of country. 

Hills North of Arab Kir. — ^The summit-level of these 
hills attained an elevation, by barometer, of 4808 feet, 
and the rocks are composed of indurated chalk, altered 
rocks, and rocks of the feldspatho-pyroxenic series. The 
strata, often nearly vertical, present various striking 
alternations, with some picturesque detail of rocky 

* Lake mountain. 


Mountain of AyelL — ^The last hills are separated from 
a lofky hill called Ayeli, by a tributary to Euphrates, 
beyond which the rocks rise gradually for a distance of 
from five to six miles towards the mountain ; and consist 
of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, compact, uniform (basalt), 
earthy and fragmentary (trap), and distinct crystalline, 
(dolerites,) accompanied by red earth and spilites. The 
beds of trap are very regularly superimposed in nearly 
horizontal stratification, and vary from three to ten 
feet in thickness, — sometimes they are in juxta-position, 
at others separated by thin beds of red earth, and nearer 
to the acclivities of Ayeli they terminate with chalk, and 
the same formation in various degrees of alteration. The 
mountain itself, however, is composed entirely of the 
Plutonic rock, and rises up in two distinct summits, the 
south-western round ; the north-eastern, with a remark* 
able isolated rock, on its top. 

The decomposition of the rocky strata below, produces 
often a curious effect. The angles of the cliff terminate 
in rude pinnacles of hard rock, isolated by the decompo- 
sition of the softer and more friable beds; and these 
pinnacles diminish in frequency towards the upper part 
of the cliffs, where sometimes one or two alone, are left, 
in ruinous isolation. 

Valley ofBemstik. — ^The Plutonic rocks stretch beyond 
the northern foot of 'Aieli several miles, to the valley of 
Berastik, where they are underlaid by buff and straw- 
yellow and fissile chalk, with blueish beds, from the 
presence of small quantities of bitumen, and also with 
ferruginous beds. 


Mountains North of Berastik. — ^The yellow fissile chalk, 
probably belonging to the upper chalk formations of the 
valley of Berastik, is again covered to the north by 
feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, presenting more compact and 
uniform characters than in 'Aieli, and rising to a consi- 
derable height; the summit level of the hills beyond 
Berastik being 4295 feet. To the north, the upper chalk 
formation shows itself again, and the district is separated 
by the valley of Karsi, with a mountain torrent, from a 
lower range of hills, with a very tame outline, which 
borders the plain of Divrigi to the south. 

Territory of DivrigL — ^These hills are composed of the 
same fissile straw-coloured chalk, but occasionally traversed 
by dikes of basaltic rock, one of which contained a large 
vein of mesotype, apparently that variety designated as 

The chalk dipped to the S. E. on the southern side of 
the hills, and north-west on the northern ; and, at the 
east end of the plain of Divrigi, exhibited itself again, as 
a compact, hard, and granular rock, as in the castle hill. 

The river which flows through the plain of Divrigi, is 
called Ekmah Chai. It is a mere rivulet, and flows into a 
larger tributary of Euphrates, which comes from the north, 
(forcing its way through the Dumbu Dagh mountains, 
which bound the plain to the north,) and passes amidst 
perpendicular cliffs behind the castle hill. 

The mountain N. E. of the castle hill is called Castigan, 
and beyond it is the Goli Dagh, or Lake Mount. The 
mountain beyond the castle hill, which separates the 
Divrigi river from the Ekmali Chai, is called Erumbat 
Dagh. Beyond, to the south, rise the snow-clad hills. 


called Yamah Dagh. All these mountains appear to be 
composed of indurated limestones, with occasional Plutonic 

The valley of the Ekmah Chai, and the soil of the 
plain of Divrigi, are remarkable for containing boulders 
of native iron, some of which were three feet long, and 
one foot and a half in thickness. 

The Dumhu Ddgh Mountains. — ^The south-eastern 
acclivities of Dumbu Dagh are composed of coarse ferru- 
ginous limestones, irregularly stratified, and intersected, 
and broken up, by protruding masses of diallage rock and 
serpentines ; but having a general dip to the S. E. 

The limestone is succeeded by serpentines and stea- 
shists, which contain abundance of disseminated nodules 
of oligiste or specular iron. The steashists are sometimes 
carbonaceous. These formations occupied the crest and 
summit of the chain, as far as to the north-western accli- 
vities, where compact serpentines, containing white talc, 
asbestos and steatite, are succeeded byfine-grained granular 
granite, of a light pink colour. 

The granites form at least two separate mountains to 
the north-west, coursing from S. E. to N. W,, with circular 
precipices, so common in granite countries ; fronting the 
north, on the banks of the Divrigi river, the granite became 
syenitic, from the absence of mica, and the presence, and 
gradual preponderance, of hornblende*. 

Beyond the bridge by which the Divrigi river is 
crossed, are some rocky hills of red ferruginous limestone, 

* This granite abounds in interesting minerals, more particularly 
topaz, beryl, schorl, and disseminated gold. 


alternating with carbonaceous steashists, and ophiolite 
rocks, both dipping to the west. The ophiolites here 
also occurred, as masses intercalated in the limestone. 
These formations shut up the river in a ravine, which 
expands beyond, to receive the village of Seliski. 

The hills to the north-east of Seliski consist of 
carbonaceous and talcose steashists, with dikes of dial- 
lage and of actynolite rock, and compact beds of dark- 
green and light-green serpentine, regularly alternating ; 
associated with these were a breccia of sandstone, with 
nodules of jasper and serpentine, red rock, and pink and 
gray limestones. Specular iron was not infrequent in 
these rocks, and a very spare vein (one-eighth of an inch) 
was met with of sulphuret of silver, in a curious mineral 
of pisolitic chalcedony. 

Gypseous Fomiatimi. — ^To the north-west of Seliski, 
the limestones and ophiolite rocks are succeeded by 
powerful beds of gypsum*, which rise into a lofty hill- 
district, and ultimately alternate with coarse brown sand-* 
stones and sandstone conglomerate. These two rocks, the 
gypsum always predominating, occupy the country to 
the valley of Sinjan, and beyond that to Yarbassan, a 
distance of thirteen miles. Siliski is elevated, by baro- 
meter, 3352 feet ; the crest of the gypsum hills rises to 

* The mineralogical characters of this gypsum were, to the soutb, a 
compact, uniformly granular rock, of a snow-white colour. In places 
it is a congeries of crystals, irregularly aggregated ; and to the north, 
a friable coarse-grained gypsum, of a light-brown colour, and easily 
disintegrated. Rivulets meet with little obstruction from this rock, 
and often course in subterranean channels, passing beneath rooky 
precipices, and reappearing at short distanoes. 


426O9 and the culminatiDg point of the same formation 
does not attain an elevation exceeding 800 more. Yar- 
bassan on the acclivity of the Kara Bel mountains, has an 
elevation of 4219 feet. 

Kard-Bel Mountains. — ^The Kara-Bel mountains are 
among the first of the woody chains north of Taurus. The 
crest attains an elevation of 5790 feet» and the culminating 
ridges rise from 800 to ] 000 feet above that. The range 
is composed of serpentines and carbonaceous steashist, with 
dikes of euphotides and ophiolites ; and outlying forma- 
tions to the south, of sandstones, argillaceous, slaty, and 
shining, near the magnesian rocks ; slaty and rhombic in 
the plains, as at Yarbassan. To the north, are gypsum, 
marles, and sandstones. 

District of KotnL'^-^ThiB is, territorially speaking, an 
extensive district, formed of level plains, covered with 
greensward, or cultivated, and traversed by low ranges of 
gypsum, sands, and marles, with occasional sandstones and 
conglomerates, as near Suaz (Sivas). These hills are 
remarkably uniform in outline, scarcely rising 400 feet 
above the plain, and have a tame continuous outline, 
with slightly precipitous fronts facing the north to N. E. 
and N. W. The sands are sometimes saliferous, and near 
Siv£s, contain rock salt*. 

District ofSudzy or Sivas^^Snaz is built upon a rock 

* This district appears to correspond in its geological characters with 
that around the salt lakes of Kodj-hissar, and through which Mr. W. 
J. Hamilton traced several volcanic ermptions to have occurred, in 
modem times, more especially at the foot of Hassan D^gh. 


of travertine, which is still observed forming in a ravine 
among gypseous and limestone hills to the north. A few 
miles from Suaz are rocky masses of gypsum, indistinctly 
stratified, and calcareous marles, and limestones, very 
cavernous; and succeeded by fresh-water limestones, 
with Cyclades and Paludinse, in horizontal strata, which 
give origin to a level table-land, about five miles in width 
and fifteen in length ; and cut at its confines into deep 
ravines by water-courses. A culminating mountain point, 
of some altitude, called Yttldus Ddgh, or Mount of StarSf 
rose out of the plain to the north-west. Its structure 
was not determined. 

Chamlu Bd (Mountains of Fir.) — The crest of these 
mountains, which, as their name indicates, are covered with 
pine forests, attains an altitude of 5260 feet, and the culmi- 
nating point, scarcely rises above 500 to 1000 feet higher. 
The chain is composed of o])hiolites, serpentines, steashists, 
often carbonaceous, traversed by dikes of actynolite rock, 
often decomposed, and then friable and ferruginous. On 
the southern acclivities are limestones and sandstones ; 
and on the northern side these form massive rocky ranges, 
through one of which a rivulet finds its way by a magni- 
ficent rocky arch. 

Beyond the Chamlu Bel is the cultivated plain of 
Baulus, which separates the last-mentioned chain from 
the Kushanli Dagh, which may, however, be looked upon 
as a portion of the same system. 

Kushanli Ddgh. — Kushanli Dagh, like the Chamlu 
Bel, is covered with wood, and the crest scarcely rises 
800 feet above the plain of Baulus, which is 3338 feet 


above the sea. The northern acclivity of the same range, 
however, descends abruptly into the valley of the Kisil 
Irmak at Tokat, where it flows at an elevation of about 
1400 feet; Tokfit being 1577 feet. The Kushanlf Dagh 
is composed of mica shists, serpentine, green talc shist, 
and limestones, that are compact, granular, and slaty 
dendritic. A rocky knoll at the foot of these hills, and 
upon which the castle of T6kat (the Eudoxiaria or Euto- 
chia of the Romo-Cappadocian territory,) is built, consist 
of a base of mica slates, upon which repose indurated and 
non-fossiliferous limestones. Gariyas KaPehsi, a ruin of 
more modem times, is built on a knoll of limestone in the 
ravine which leads from the Kushanll Dagh down to thecity. 

Territory of Gatd% or Aklo Dagh. — ^This is an exten- 
sive district, composed entirely of mica shists, and covered 
with wood. It lies north of T6kat, and was visited on 
account of the report of a mine having been discovered 
there, which turned out, after penetrating 15 miles into 
the forests, to be merely a formation of decomposed mica, 
with a glistening metallic lustre. The mica shist also 
contained common garnets and cubical pyrites. The 
mean elevation of this country averaged 4000 feet above 
the sea. Between the village of Serpin in this country, 
and the valley of Turkhal, a high conical mountain ex- 
hibits clayslate in its structure, and afterwards roofing- 
slate becomes frequent, and is succeeded by a country of 
limestones, which extends to Turkhal, the old castle of 
which (Sebastopolis) stands upon a knoll of limestone, 
superimposed on mica shist, which does not, like that of 
Tokat, shut up a valley, but towers out of the centre of 
the plain, through which flow the waters of the Kisil Irm^k. 



Turkhdl* Hills.— The hills of Turkhal, attaining an 
inconsiderable elevation, are composed of tertiary sand- 
stones and limestones, reposing upon mica shists. They 
are succeeded by an extensive plain, beyond which rise 
up the hills that lead to Amasiyah. These hills have on 
their southern side a similar geognostic structure, lime- 
stones, with pectens and cones, and coarse friable sand- 
stones reposing upon mica shists. 

District of Amasiyah. — ^The Yeshll Irmak, or Green 
River f , forces its way through the hills by a narrow pass, 
in which stands the town of Amasiyah, and above which 
the limestone rocks tower in precipices nearly a thousand 
feet in height. When any stratification is visible, there 
is a slight dip about 30° to the west and north-west. The 
mica shist shows itself at one or two points. The rock 
with the castle and tombs, is called Jebel Jiyamik ; that 
opposite, Ferahad Dagh. The limestone hills which 
separate the valley of Amasiyah from the plain of Merzi- 
fun, are less indurated and granular, and the hills are of 
a very inconsiderable height. 

Merzifun Hills. — ^The range of hills which bound the 
plain of Merzifun to the north, are immediately behind 
Merzifun, about 10 miles from the southern hills, and 

* Turkhal, or Turhfl, (Terhal, Otter, ii. 333,) also called Keshan 
Elarehsi ; Jehan Numa, p. 623, was the ancient Karehsi. 

t The Kisil Irmak, the antique Halys, appears to owe its name to 
the red colour given to its waters by the earth which in another form 
(a silico-magnesite,) became the Bol of Sinope, or Armenian red. From 
the absence of colour the Amasiyah river was designated as the green 


rise scarcely 800 feet above the plain. They course from 
east to west, and are composed of alternating strata of 
chalk and of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks. A more lofty 
range to the west presents mica shists and limestones, 
with mines of argentiferous galena, which are said to 
produce 3501bs. of silver annually. 

Menzil ^Ashiki. — ^This name, meaning Inn Lovers' 
Stage, belongs to a post and guard-house, at a pass 
through the same hills. The rocks consist of limestone, 
tilted up by and reposing upon mica shists, which form 
the axis of the Merzifun hills. In proceeding through 
this pass, the limestone begins to predominate; and gives 
origin to some fine alpine scenery. 

^Osmdnjik. — Beyond the pass, another range of hills 
is traversed, which exhibits chalk and altered rocks in 
contact with feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks and trachytes. 
This was the only spot in which that rock had hitherto 
been observed. Beyond are some low undulating hills 
of yellow fissile chalk, carbonaceous marles, sandstones, 
and clays, stretching down into the cultivated plain of 
'Osmanjik, or Little 'Osman, out of which rise two or three 
isolated rocks, composed of sandstones reposing upon 
trachytic rocks, one of which is pierced with sepulchral 
grots ; a second bears the ruins of a castle, and two or 
three obelisk-like masses, towering above surrounding 
houses, are made the homes of birds, protected by a wise 

T 2 


Territories op Ain-Tab, Kilis, and Antioch. 

General Features. — ^The hilly district of AYn-Tab (the 
Roman Commagena) is a country of denudation, com- 
posed of low rounded hills, with deep transverse valleys. 
The formations consist almost everywhere of the upper 
chalk formation associated at spots or broken up by feld- 
spatho-pyroxenic rocks. 

Nizib Hills. — ^The Nizib hills, north-west of Bir, and 
celebrated for their olive-groves, are composed of fissile 
yellow chalk, often dipping in an opposite direction ; for 
example, in the ravines west of Tel Balkis to the north- 
west; in the valley of the Kersin to the south-east. 

VaU^ of Kersin. — ^The chalk formation in the valley 
of the Kersin, where it flows through the hills, becomes 
argillaceous, and forms round clayey hills, sometimes, as 
at Ras-hild, capped by a chalk conglomerate. 

Kdfer Ddgh.— On the Kaier Dalgh, or Hills of Unbe- 
lievers ; a formation of limestone superior to the chalk, 
first shows itself upon the summits of the hills, which, 
being of a harder nature than the underlying fissile chalk, 
it causes to terminate often in abrupt cliffs. This lime- 
stone contains Cones, Ostracites, and Pectens. 

Ain-Tdh. — ^The rocks around Ai'n-Tab consist entirely 
of the chalk series, and here the upper beds, reposing 
upon the yellow chalk, are white, cretaceous, but slaty and 
fissile. There were some large caverns in this formation, 


the roofs of which were covered with large Crinoidea. 
The rock is also deeply fissured, and the clefts are some- 
times filled with flint and argillaceous iron ore, 

Kardk Weyu ^To the west of Ain-Tab the rocks of 

the feldspatho-pyroxenic series show themselves, first at 
Karak Weyu, and consist of calcareous spilites, trap, and 
basalts, occupying low rounded hills or isolated knolls, and 
stretching nearly due north and south. The valleys of 
the fissile chalk, now mostly indurated, extend at nearly 
right angles ; the valleys become narrower, the acclivities 
steeper. At Kavis the basaltic and metamorphic rocks 
make their appearance again, and keep reappearing at 
intervals, till they finally predominate over the chalk 
formation several miles to the west of Kilis, where they 
are superimposed upon and alternate with the chalk 
formation, and rise in cliffs of from two to three hundred 
feet above the plain below. 

KUis. — ^The hills of Kilis consist of trap and basalts 
superiorly. These decompose often in round masses, or 
are sometimes spathose in their structure, having a ten- 
dency to columnar arrangement. 

Beneath this is a formation of chalk, slightly altered 
in characters, and dipping with the feldspatho-pyroxenic 
rocks to the north. 

Below the chalk are trap rocks, calcareous spilites, 
and thermantides, passing again into chalk, of a greenish- 
yellow colour, and argillo-calcareous nature, generally 
compact and hard, and forming an excellent building 
stone, used in the erection of barracks by the architects 
of Ibrahim Pasha. 


At the foot of the hills of Kilfs, and to the south and 
south-west, the plains are occupied by an extensive form- 
ation of calcareous spilites, which vary somewhat in their 
characters, as they neighbour or distance the hills. 

Red rocks, presenting fractures with vitreous sur^Eices 
of oxidated iron, also abound in nodules of calcareous 
spar, distributed however in various quantities, and differ- 
ing very much in size, from a pea to a hen's egg. 

In the spilites of the plains, the calcareous nodules 
are imiformly disseminated, and preserve nearly the same 
magnitude throughout. 

If the chalk and accompanying Plutonic rocks had 
dipped to the south, the chalk formation might have been 
expected to prolong itself also in that direction, but this 
is not the case, and beyond the calcareous spilites, the 
territorial surface is occupied by limestones superior to 
the chalk. 

Plains of Northern Syria. — ^The upper chalk formation 
of Bir extends westward as far as the Sajur river ; here 
it is succeeded by a formation of limestone conglomerate, 
dipping westward, and separating from the chalk an upper 
formation of coarse calcareous limestone, particularly 
characterized by a predominance of shells belonging to 
the genera Conus and Voluta, and also containing species 
of Ostrea, Cardium, Cytherea, Lucina, Cerithium, Fusus, 
and Pyrula. 

This formation occupies the whole extent of the plain 
of North Syria, for the most part cultivated, and ave- 
raging, according to the geodesic levelling of Mr. Thom- 
son, a mean elevation of 1300 feet. 



T&iritory of Azdz. — ^To the west of the plain of the 
Chalus, and immediately beyond Azaz (the Arsace of 
the Itinerary), the Conide limestone rises in bluff cliffs, 
stretching from north to south, about 500 feet above 
the plain, while to the south they extend in an indurated 

This ridge, in its northern prolongation, is called the 
Lelin-Dagh, extending in a south-westerly direction by 
Sheik Barakat, as far as to the district of Armanas, and 
sending off to the west the Anguli Dagh, which ulti- 
tnately flanks the valley of Orontes to the east. 

These limestones are much broken up and altered, in 
the valleys to the westward (at Basul and north of Ghin- 
darls), by feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, and their accom- 
panying spilite formations. 

The valley of the 'Afrin, which flows past Basul and 
Ghindaris at an elevation of 500 feet and less, is se- 
parated from the valley of the Kara-su by a range of 
chalk hills, of uniform outline, and which contain at their 
foot local formations of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, as at 
Al Hamam, in the plains to the westward, and at Murad 

Al Hamdm (Thermal Waters). — ^The basalt of Al 
Hamam* has a basis of blueish-grey colour, dull lustre, 

* Al Hamam is so called from its thermal springs, which are of 
recent origin, and, according to a local report, obtained by an European 
medical officer in Ibrahim Pasha's service, and who had been employed 
by the Pasha in the construction of a suitable bathing-house, had ap- 


and contains crystals of augite. That of Gul BashI, or 
Murad Pasha, has a similar basis, and contains bottle- 
green olivine, transparent chrysolite, and light greenish- 
brown garnets. Sometimes they are dark-coloured and 
ironshot, sometimes earthy (trap) and vesicular, ap- 
proaching almost to common cinereous lava. 

Territory of the Upper ^Afrtn^-^-To the west of Kilfs 
are trap conglomerates and calcareous spilites, breaking 
through a formation of indurated limestones, dipping 
generally to the south-east. About six miles from Kilis 
the limestone is succeeded by Ostracite sandstone, which 
occurs in thin beds. An argillo-siliceous rock, of friable 
structure and coarse texture. This formation also dips 
to the south-east at an angle of about 7"". 

The sandstone enters into the composition of a double 
range of low rounded hills, which extend to the banks of 
the 'Afrin. 

Beyond the 'Afrfn the chalk makes its appearance, 
rising into a hilly but not barren country, and as it ap- 
proaches the vale of the 'Afrfn, is cut into deep ravines 
and valleys. The dip is very various, but the most 
general inclination is to the south-east. 

In crossing over this sub-alpine country, which is, for 
the most part, covered with wood, more particularly gall- 

peared during different earthquakes. The spring which was pointed 
out as having occurred at the latest shook, exhibited a temperature of 
99.5°, and contained ConfervaB, frogs, and tortoises; another, which 
had appeared at an antecedent date, was 98.7°, evolving much hydro- 
sulphuric acid ; a third presented a temperature of 98°, and a fourth 
77^ emitting no gaseous matters. The elevation of these springs 
above the level of the Mediterranean is about 400 feet. 


bearing oak-trees, and between the villages of Karkin 
and Kursisli, the chalk varies much in its characters, 
becoming frequently argillaceous, with a slaty structure, 
and at other times highly anthracitous, with veins of 
Lydian stone and flinty slate. The hill of Kursisli is 
thus formed of argillaceous limestone at the base, and 
compact limestone at the summit. Near B^ju Ko'j, in 
the same country, is a small lake and rice-grounds. 

Valley of the Kard-su. — ^This hilly coimtry terminates 
at the valley of the Kara-su, which separates it from 
Amanus, or Jawur Dagh; and in the parallel of Raju 
Koi, the valley is occupied by feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, 
the river marking the line of division between these and 
the argillaceous limestones, which form one or two 
isolated hills at Kara Baba. 

FeldspalJKhpyrowenic Jiocks.''^Tlie remarkable district 
of feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks, which presents itself at 
this point, does not rise to any height, but, on the con- 
trary, when viewed upon a large scale, appears like a 

These rocks consisted of basalt, with a light, blueish- 
coloured basis, with vesicular cavities, occasionally filled 
with mineral substances. These basalts contained, dis- 
seminated, bottle-green olivine, transparent chrysolite, 
and light greenish-brown garnets. 

The predominant structure was the amorphous, often 
running in streams, overflowing in superimposed, uncon* 
formable beds, or elevated in irregular ridges. The next 
dominant structure was the spathose, but in general there 
was rather an approach to regular polyhedral forms, than 
any perfect and continuous developement ; but in every 


directioD, the plain presented continuous surfaces, M-hieb 
exhibited polyhedral divisions like a great tessellated 

The third kind of structure, the circular or concentric, 
was also not uncommon. This structure did not show 
itself in the present case as in other basaltic districts, by 
the developement of balls, or masses of rock in con- 
centric layers, but in a general tendency to a circular 
disposition of the beds themselves, and also in the forma- 
tion of great circular cavities in the rock itself. In the 
first case, the concentric layers were often observed to be 
repeated over considerable spaces, the completeness of 
the circle being interrupted not only by waving lines, but 
also by basaltic dikes, and ranges of imperfect columns, 
the pillars dipping at a slight inclination to the north- 
west. Sometimes the surface was occupied by one unin- 
terrupted convex bed, but more frequently the latter are 
broken in the line of the axis of the greatest convexity, 
forming fissures of greater or less extent. 

Isolated hills, or groups of hills, with a rounded 
outline, rise out of this plain to a height of from five to 
eight hundred feet. These hills are composed of diallage 
rock, and red steashist, in a state of decomposition, and 
much disintegrated at the surface. 

Plain of ChatelL — ^The feldspatho-pyroxenic rocks are 
separated from Amanus, by a rich and fertile plain 
(Chateli); but they reappear under other forms, on the 
acclivities of that chain, at the village of Ada-bum, 
where they are associated with quartz rock. The basalt 
is siliceous, of a light blue colour, and glistering lustre. 
This basalt occurred in vertical dikes in a spilite, with 
cavities incrusted with chalcedony. 

Territory of Antioch. {Antakiyah.) 

Circumscription. — ^The territory of Antioch includes 
the phdn designated as 'Umk, or Valley, par excellence, 
and sometimes 'Umk of Uerem, inhabited by Nomadic 
Turkomen, and the lower valley of Orontes. 

The Plain, or ' Umk. — ^The plain, or 'Umk, is in part 
occupied by the lake called Denghiz Aga, and the re- 
mainder by lacustrine deposits, forming a nearly level 
plain, at an elevation, according to Mr. Thomson, of 
about 365 feet above the Mediterranean. This lacustrine 
deposit is everywhere characterized by the Melania cos- 
tata (fig. 1), a shell not common in European cabinets. 
Species of Bulimus (Bidimus hbrosus, fig. %) Paludina, 
and Succinea, are also not uncommon in the upper parts, 
and the genus Helix {Helix cariosa, Sfc, fig. 3,) has many 
representatives on the plains. The lacustrine deposit 
may be judged to be 200 feet iu thickness. 

VaUey of Antioch. — The lacustrine deposits are tilted 
up, and occupy a variQus inclination, but never excessive ; 


at the gorge of the valley of Antiocb, and on the plain 
north of the city, the character of the deposit is no 
longer the same, but i)resents blue clays, and sandy and 
marly beds like silt. The fossils are chiefly agglomera- 
tions of Cardita^, associated with lacustrine shells now 
more rare, and the formation is one which indicates an 
estuary or inlet of the sea. 

Pebbly Deposit — ^This formation becomes, on pro- 
ceeding westward, covered by a deposit of pebbles, often 
consolidated into breccia, and consisting of diallage rocks, 
euphotides, serpentines, quartzes and jaspers, and meta- 
morphic rocks, which belong to the surrounding moun- 
tains. This deposit is elevated 400 feet above the 

Sandstone Formation. — The valley of the Orontes, 
still more closed up by mountains, presents to the west- 
ward an undulating territory, with rounded and conical 
hills, composed of coarse sandstones, earthy and finable, 
which alternate with pebbly beds and coarse non«fossili- 
ferous marls. In a hill beyond a ziaret, (whose white- 
washed walls render it remarkable on the road,) the beds 
are nearly horizontal, and to the westward, dip at an 
angle of 5!^ to the north, 30** east. 

Mount St. Simon. — Beyond the Great Kara Chai, a 
tributary to Orontes, the mountain of St. Simon, with a 
ruined church and convent, and called Bin-Eklisf, or the 
Thousand Churches, has protruded itself upon the valley 
to the north of Orontes, and on the plain beyond this, 
sedimentary formations are covered by a powerful bed of 


transported pebbles, at an elevation of 400 feet, till 
descending into the fertile district of 8 wed (yah, a formOi- 
tion of marine marles and limestones, often however 
covered with gravelly deposits, manifests itself, extending 
in low hills and nndnlating conntry as far as to the 
plain which extends from Selencia Pieria to the rock 
south of the embouchure of Orontes. 

Organic Remains. — ^This rock was found to contain 
several shells that are still to be met with in the Medi- 
terranean, among which were : — Clavagella aperta, Solen 
candidus, Mactra triangula, Tellina planata, Lucina 
divaricata, L. lactea, Venus verrucosa, Cardium sulcatum^ 
and C. edule, Pecten operculum ? Natica glaucina, Tro- 
chus fagus, Turritella tomata, Cerithium vulgatum, Pleu- 
rotoma vulpecula, another unknown, Fusus lignarius, F. 
strigosus, Cypraea rufa. And among those not known in 
the Mediterranean, were : — ^Triton intermedium, Pyrula 
ficoides, Fusus subulatus, Cerithium tricinctum, and 
Pecten scabrellus; and there still remained a large 
number of undetermined species. 

Plain of Orontes. — The plain of Orontes is composed 
of mud-silt, which lies in horizontal beds, and is probably 
at its western extremity upwards of 300 feet in depth, 
and contains marine shells, such as are common to the 
neighbouring shores, with the actual river-sliells of the 
Orontes, and the land-shells of the neighbourhood. 

General Results. — From these facts we gather that the 
territory of Antioch was most probably, at one period, 
an inlet or estuary, if not an inland bay of the Medi- 


terranean, in which the formations tranquilly deposited 
were tilted up at the gorge of the valley, while the 
formations which were carried down to the sea with more 
quickness and irregularity, were raised up (as they also 
would have been deposited) beyond the point of gradual 
sedimentary accumulations ; while beyond all these, pure 
marine deposits have also been raised up from the deep 
sea. A formation of transported pebbles has at the 
same time, from some local circumstance of drift, been 
thrown over two separate portions of these formations, 
and lastly, since that event, the salt waters of the bay of 
'Umk have been gradually freshened, and ultimately 
converted into a fresh-water lake, which itself has been 
progressively diminished in size, during the progress of 
which the bay formations have been covered and sup- 
planted by lacustrine deposits; while at the mouth of 
Orontes are river and marine deposits, which have in a 
similar manner been increasing since historical times*. 

* Pocockc found the ruins of the ancient port of Antioch, at a 
distance of nearly two miles from the sea. Nearly a mile to the west 
of the basin which constituted that port, is the site of the ancient port 
of St. Simon, near which are the ruins of a small church and khan. 
The present port is a little further to the west, and about a quarter of 
a mile from the bar of the Orontes. 

Casiotis, and Tebbitobies of Ladieiyeh and 
Upper Orontes- 

■.^W^- w^'^^^" 

JAtl Akri, «■ Mnu: 

HiU Oc null of AnIioA in 

il, »e >• Btai ef Ok Lain," 

Gasiotis. — ^The hilly or mountain district south of the 
valley of Orontes is compoaed of the Jebel Akra, with an 
outlying summit to the west, continued by the Jebel 
Chaksinah, and the hill of Antioch, to the east, as far as 
to the southern valley of Orontes. 

This district comprised the Casius of the ancients and 
Anti-Casius of Strabo, (lib. xvi. p. 751), which extended 
to Coelo Syria. 

To the south the hills of Antioch, of which Casius 
forms a part, are continued by the Jebel Kraad to the 
Nosairi mountains, which again are continuous with the 
Lebanon or Libanus. Casius only terminates to the 

304 CASions, ladikiyeh, and 

south with the plain of Ladikiyeh ; it is, however, a part 
of the Antioch system, by structure, and by its topogra- 
phical relations ; and Casius, and Anti-Casius, are brought 
into connexion with Rhossus and Amanus, by the hill of 
St. Simon. 

The celebrity of Casius dates to a very remote anti- 
quity; and it was, from its height and remarkable appear- 
ance, long the seat of superstitious rites, as it afterwards 
concealed the proselytes of a true religion. 

Seleucus Nicator having invited the descendants of 
Triptolemus to Antioch, the inhabitants of that city used 
long afterwards to give heroic honours to Alexander's 
general^ and to celebrate a festival on the summit of 
Mount Casius*; even so late as the time of Julian the 
Apostate, sacrifices were made by the monarch on the 
summit of the mountainf . Pliny (lib. x. 89, 27,) relates 
that Jupiter, yielding to prayers addressed to him on 
Mount Casius, sent birds, called the Seleucidse, to destroy 
the locusts. So great a number of birds live on locusts in 
Syria, that it is difficult to say what species is so nobly de- 
signated by Pliny; Cuvier considered it to be the Turdus 
Roseus, the Smurmur of the Syrians. In the island of 
Lemnos, the Graculus (Choucas) was formerly venerated 
on the same account. At the Cape of Good Hope the 
locust-bird is also a species of Turdus. 

Casius appears to have derived its appellation from 
Kas, with the customary Latin termination, as Koh Kas, 
became the Caucasus of the Romans. Pbcocke looked 
upon the western summit as the true Casius, but without 
reason; and Parisot, with equal incorrectness, called it 

* Strabo, lib. xvi. p. 7^0. 

t Ammian. Marcell., lib. xxii. cap. xiv. 


" le pic le plus septentrional de la petite chaine qui 
court septentrionalement de Laodicea a Antioche*." 

Burckhardt, Volney, Adrien Balbi, and others, have 
looked upon Casius, and the Nosairi hills, as effecting a 

* Pliny relates of Casius (lib. v. xviii.) " Super earn mons eodem, 
quo alius nomine Casius cujus excelsa altitudo quarto vigilia orientam 
per tenebras, solem aspicit : brevi circumactu corporis diem noctemque 
pariter ostendens ambitus ad cacumen xix, pass, est altitudo per 
directem iv." Aristotle originally notices the fact (Meteor, lib. i. p. 16). 
Ammianus Marcellinus repeated it (lib. xxii. chap, xiv.), and Pom- 
ponius Mela and Lucian (xv. 34), by inadvertence, relate the same 
of the Phoenician Casius. The results given by the barometer, as 
observed by the author on the summit, and at various heights, com-i 
pared with a register kept at the same time by Lieut. Eden, R. N., at 
the foot, coincided closely with the results obtained trigonometrically 
by Lieut. Murphy, R. E., and which latter gave for the elevation of 
Casius above the sea, 5318 feet. At an elevation of about 1000 feet 
the risinor of the sun commences about one minute sooner than at the 
level of the sea, — hence rather more than five minutes would be 
gained by an ascent of Casius. 

By observations similarly carried on, the following results were 

obtained : 


Village in valley west of Casius - - 1338 

Summit of Pass — (minimum of crest, sum- 
mit-level of a road) — region of yellow 

asphodel ... - 2460 

Zone of Pyrus and Anethum foeniculum 3494 

Zone of birch-trees, violets, and pansies - 5012 
Summit of Mount Casius, — 

First observations, first day, - 5361 

Second observations, second day - 5322 

Mean - - - - 5341 

Bivouac station — ^forest of birch and larch - 5206 

Ruins of Christian church - - 4068 

Village of Beshkir - - - 2513 

Myrtle districts - - - - 1548 


306 CASions, ladikiyeh, and 

connexion between the Lebanon and Amanus, and hence 
geographically connecting the systems of Taurus and 
Libanus; and this view of the subject is farther sup- 
ported by the geognostic structure of the chains. 

DiaUage Rocks. — The diallage rocks, and their asso- 
ciates, which form the basis of Amanus and Rhosus, 
show themselves immediately behind Antioch, at the 
foot of the hill, and to the east of that point ; to the 
west still more frequently, as in the valley of the Aque- 
duct, from Daphne, and at Babilur. The same formations 
advance into the valley of Orontes, at the foot of Bln- 
Eklisi, or Mount St. Simeon. They do not show them- 
selves at the northern foot of Casius, but occur in the 
deep valley to the south-west, where they are accompanied 
by altered rocks. 

They also occupy an extensive district at the south- 
eastern foot of Casius, and rise into a subalpine chain, 
covered with forests, which extends to the valley of Nahr 
el Kebir, in the parallel of Ladikiyeh, advancing also in 
narrow dikes across the river, at the extreme north- 
easterly termination of the plain of Jebili, and also crop 
out to the west in a ridge that advances over the bed of 
the stream two miles to the south-west of the village of 

Chalk Fo^^mcUions. — ^Tte chalk formation shows itself 
at the south-western foot of Casius, in the proximity of 
the sea, immediately beyond the cajpe, called Ras Basit. 
It occupies about eight miles of the shore, forming clifis 
from 30 to 80 feet in height. 

To the east, the chalk is met with more extensively 


developed, forming two ranges of hills, about 700 feet 
in elevation, coursing nearly from north to south along 
the valley of the Nfflhir el Kebfr. The westerly of these 
ranges consists of alternating beds, of compact chalk and 
of cretaceous non-fossiliferous marles, and is oftentimes 
abrupt, fronting the river, with naked precipices. The 
village called Bilat is singularly situated at the summit 
of the hills, and is approached by a tortuous and difficult 

At the termination of this valley the river turns to 
the west, and is separated from the plain of Ladikiyeh by 
an upland, composed likewise of chalk, which terminates 
to the north, generally in an abrupt escarpment, but 
sometimes in a low sub-range. 

The river of Ladikiyeh, called NOir el Keblr, Or 
KorS^sh river, issues from the Jebel KrSad, a country of 
chalk, consisting, for the most part, of hills of tame and 
rounded outline and barren aspect. 

Beyond the mountain of Okabi*^ the river is seen 
flowing along high cliffs of the same formation, prolonged 
to the north until they come in contact with the diallage 
rocks, where they form abrupt escarpments. 

At the head of the valley, the Korash descends from 
the mountains by a deep and narrow ravine, which, in 
its deepest part, probably exceeds 60 feet, and is scarcely 
eight feet in width. Maundrell, who travelled along this 
road in 1697, gives it a depth of 30 yards, and tells a 
legend in connexion with the natural phenomenon. 

Jebel Krddd. — ^The mountains which occur at the 

* See Maundrell's Tour. 

U 2 


head of the Ladikiyeh river, and form the watershed 
between it and the Orontes, are called the Jebel Kraad. 
They constitute the northern prolongation of the Nosai- 
rian hills, which they thus unite with the outlying ranges 
of Casius and Anti-Casius. 

Nosdiri Hills, — ^The crest and acclivities of the NosaYri 
hills are nearly uniformly barren, and void of forests; 
differing much in this respect from the diallage ranges 
of the north. Their outline is tame, and two sub-conical 
hills, surpassing by a very small quantity the general 
elevation of the chain, which hardly exceeds 1000 feet, 
form the culminating points. The chain is steep towards 
Orontes, or the east; while to the west it descends in low 
irregular hills into the plain of Jebili. As far as the 
author had an opportunity of examining, it was a con- 
tinuous range of chalk. 

Valley of BeddmL — ^In the Jebel Kraad, hard and soft 
beds of chalk, alternate pretty regularly in strata, dipping 
in different directions at slight angles of inclination. 
Sometimes, the softer beds being denuded and carried 
away, the harder rock is strewed, in huge masses, over 
the valley. In the plain of Bedami, the soft and hard 
beds are separated, by considerable intervals, and in con- 
sequence of this, give rise to differences in the contrasted 
configuration of the soil. Above Jisr Shugher the chalk 
formation is succeeded by gypseous marles, but beyond 
this it forms a long and remarkably continuous range, 
which stretches almost beyond the reach of vision, bound- 
ing the valley of the Upper Orontes, to the west, with a 
great rampart of rock. 


Tertiary Sandstones. — The valley of Coelo-Syria, or 
southern valley of Orontes, at its northern termination, is 
for the most part level, but is also interrupted by rising 
ground and low ranges of hills, which are generally found 
to be composed of clays, frequently indurated, and 
disposed in nearly spherical masses, but still more 
frequently in thin argillo-calcareous strata, more or less 
horizontally disposed. 

To the west, the same valley is bounded by a range 
of hills, which extend in nearly a straight line towards 
Jisr Shugher. The acclivities are for the most part 
gentle, but at times they break off abruptly into shingly 
escarpments. The beds consist of sandstones and clays, 
distinctly stratified, and containing abundant Ostracea. 

This formation immediately reposes upon the chalk 
formation of Jebel Kraad, and the diallage rocks, which 
extend southward from Casius to Bedamf. In the 
interval it forms low ranges of hills, often more or less 
circularly disposed; and these are succeeded, on the 
opposite of the valley of Orontes, by the supra-cretaceous 
limestones of Armanas, and by the same limestones above, 
or south of Orontes, at Antioch. 

Supra-cretaceous Limestones. — ^The supra-cretaceous 
limestones of Casiotis occupy the summits chiefly of the 
hills to the north, commencing not far from the west of 
the vale of Coelo-Syria, forming the crest which bears the 
ancient ramparts of Antioch, and extending from thence, 
by Daphne and Jebel Chaksinah, or Ordu Dagh, to Casius, 
which is composed, from its base in the sea, to its conical 
summit, 5318 feet high; of indurated limestones, cofn- 
taining occasional Cones, and impressions of Pectens. 


Miiieralogical Characters. — ^The mineralogical charac- 
ters of the Conide limestone, are those of a compact hard 
rock, with an uneven, often sub-conohoidal, fracture, a 
close-grained, uniform texture, and a dirty-white or 
yellowish-white colour. It is sometimes slaty, and of a 
softer and less uniform texture. 

Its stratification is generally distinct on the plains, and 
is also generally so, on the acclivities of hills and moun- 
tains, and on the face of cliffs and precipices. But some- 
times, in isolated mountain masses, more especially when 
these assume a conical form, all stratification becomes 
obliterated ; and as, under similar circumstances, qUartz 
shist becomes quartz rock, so the limestone becomes 
compact, massive, and uniform. 

The organic remains of this formation were not abun- 
dant in Casiotis, where it is chiefly an altered limestone, 
and are therefore described where they occur in a softer 
rock, more abundant, and more distinct. There are, 
however, fossiliferous and marly beds in this limestone, 
as at Nahr el Dj^, east of Antioch, and to the north of 
the fountain of Zoiba. 

Breccias and Shelly Limestones, — In proceeding south- 
ward from Antioch, the next valley is occupied by marly 
fossiliferous limestones, upon which is superimposed a 
cretaceous or limestone breccia ; and over this again are 
strewn boulders of siliceous limestone, cavernous and 
water^worn, like the meuliere of Paris, but not forming a 
continuous rock. To the south, the Conide limestones 
form another ridge, beyond which are low hills with flat 
tops, formed of a soft, very shelly limestone, reposing on 
marles and brecciated rocks. The shells were chiefly 


Pectenides, Ostracea, Cardiacea, belonging to the genera 
Cardium, Venus, Donax, Lucina, Tellinides; also Cerithia, 
Pyrulae, and numerous Echinodermata. 

Pass of Beit al Mdie (Daphne). — ^At the pass of Beit 
al Moie, the Conide limestones are succeeded, by red 
and white coloured cretaceous breccias, alternating with 
cretaceous marles, which sometimes rise into low rounded 
summits, and at other times have superimposed upon them 
a deposit of siliceous limestone. 

Sheik GuL — ^To the east aud west of the village of 
Sheik Gu{, the siliceous limestone (resembling precisely, 
in mineralogical characters, the formation of similar age 
in the basin of Paris,) assumes a considerable importance, 
and forms independent ridges and hilly ranges. 

The siliceous limestone, from its great hardness, occurs 
in very stony ridges and acclivities ; or in rocky precipices, 
presenting a diversified and fantastic appearance. Some 
miles to the south of Sheik Gui, (which itself is built on 
the inferior cretaceous marles,) the siliceous limestone is 
met with, tilted and broken up by the diallage formations. 

Gypsum Deposits. — Local and circumscribed deposits 
of gypsum are met with first at the north-eastern foot of 
Casius, not far from Orontes, where the gypsum is trans- 
parent and highly crystalline, and associated with creta- 
ceous marles, with Cyclades, and other fresh-water shells. 
Another formation of gypsum, with marles of a less 
crystalline character, occurs in the hills north-west of 
Jisr Shugher. In these marles, no shells were detected 
during a very cursory examination. 


General Results. — ^The hilly district of Antioch, com- 
monly called Casiotis, appears, then, to have consisted of 
a gi'eat tertiary basin, which has been disrupted and 
broken up, and its various formations confusedly mingled, 
and topographically removed from their former sedimen- 
tary associations, to a degree that occurs in no other 
tertiary basin that has hitherto been described. 

Territory of Apamene. — The valley of Coelo-Syria, or 
southern valley of Orontes, is bounded to the east by the 
hills of Armanas, which stretching south, form the hills of 
Shahshabu, and the Isawi or Ber'imi hills of Burckhardt ; 
names confirmed to the author by the Sheik of Kal'at el 

These hills form abrupt cliffs, on the side which fronts 
the valley of Orontes ; but on the other side descend 
gently towards the plains of the great Syrian desert, the 
mean level of which is above that of the upper valley of 
Orontes. They send out several spurs, as at Be'iha ; the 
hills of which are separated from those of Armanas, by 
the valley of Howash. The plains are also cut by ravines, 
as at Mar'ash and EdHp. The hills of Armanas are con- 
tinuous to the north with the Amguli Dagh, or hills of 
Sheik Barakat, the mountain of St. Simeon Stylites. 

Felspaiho-Pyroxenic Rocks. — Rocks of this series, 
presenting little variety in mineralogical characters, ex- 
hibit themselves in this latter district, on the plain north- 
west of Mar'ash, and in Coelo-Syria south of Jisr Shugher. 


Jawur Dagh and Akma Dagh. 
Amanus and Rhosus. 

Direction. — ^The direction of Jawur Dagh* is from 
S. 2(f W. to N. 20° E., and that of Akma Dagh is from 
W. 10° S.E. to 10° N. The two chains are nominally 
separated by the pass of Beilan f , but they are, in reality, 
continuous with one another. The Jawur Dagh attains 
a greater altitude than the Akma Dagh, the culminating 
points being to the north. The average elevation of the 
Akma Dagh is a little more than 5000 feet above the 
Mediterranean ; that of the Jawur Dagh is from 5000 to 
6000 feet. 

Cmdrasted Configuration* — ^The culminating points of 
the Jawur Dagh are more pointed and peaked than most 
of the other parts of the range, which, however, is 
frequently serrated, and also presents, at times, bluff 
precipices of limestone ; the general outline being never- 
theless rounded. The Akma Dagh, in their northern 
prolongation, consist also chiefly of rounded hills, which 
are more continuous, above the valley of Antioch, than on 
the side of the Gulf of Iskenderun ; and the range becomes 
more peaked and serrated in its prolongation towards the 
sea, in the Jebel Kaiserik, or Kaiserik Dagh. 

* Jawiir, commonly Giaour Dagh, " Infidel Mountain." 
t The pass of Beilan is, by barometrical admeasurement, 1584 [feet 
above the Mediterranean; a Christian church in ruins, zone of Valo- 
nea, Quercus aBgilops, and other oaks, 2698 feet; Kurtlu, or Village of 
"Wolves, 4068 feet (this village terminated over an abrupt precipice) ; 
summit of the Beilan mountain, 5337 feet. 


Musah Ddgh. — ^The Jebel M6sah, or Musah Dagh, 
the mountains of Moses, which occur at the south-western 
extremity of the Akma Dagh, are composed of a detached 
mass of Kmestone and their upheaving rocks, and at the 
maritime termination reach the ruins and excavations of 
Seleucia in Pieria; while an imperfect junction is effected 
with the mountain district of Casiotis, by the upheaved 
mass of Jebel Siman, or Mount St. Simeon. 

General Structure. — ^These chains are composed, 
elementarily, of talc shist, quartz shist, quartz rock, 
and felspatho-pyroxenic rocks, of diallage rocks, eupho- 
tides, ophiolites, serpentines, and steashist, uplifting meta- 
morphic rocks, and tertiary sandstones and limestones. 

Talc Shists. — ^Talc shist is not a common rock in 
Amanus, but occurs in the centre of the mountain masses, 
and in the midst of extended formations of serpentines 
and diallage rocks, passing into a variety of adjunct rock 
formations. For, as rocks with a predominance of silicate 
of alumina (felspar rock, clay-slate, &c.,) will generally 
be found developed to a greater or less extent at the base 
of hilly or mountain ranges, chiefly composed of clink- 
stones (phonolite), clay stones (argillolite), slate-clay, and 
associated amygdaloids (spilites) and porphyries, as in 
the Pentland and Cheviot ranges of hills in Britain ; so 
rocks with a predominance of silicate of magnesia, form 
the mineralogical as well as geognostic basis of districts, 
in which there is an extended developement of serpen- 
tines, ophiolites, euphotides, diallage rocks, and earthy or 
slaty steashists. 

If, as some modern mineralogists think, the green 


diallage or smaragdite of the Verde di Corsica is only an 
Uralite, a mineral which effects a transition between horn- 
blende and augite (pyroxene), it is easy to understand 
how also, minerals, in which, in their normal condition, 
there is a preponderance of silicate of lime (tremolite, 
hornblende, augite,) and which form one series of rocks, 
when associated with felspar; may form another, when 
associated with talc and serpentine; and assume the mine- 
ralogical characters of actynolite, diallage, and Uralite. 
In Taurus of Sophena, acicular crystals of green actynolite 
are common, grouped as an actynolitic rock, or porphyritic 
in serpentine; and in Cyrrhestica, between Azass and the 
valley of Kara-su, there occurs a formation of green horn- 
blende (lamellar, and in imperfect oblique, rhomboidal 
prisms,-r— Uralite ?) in a basis of flesh-coloured and gray 
felspar. The green colouring matter of serpentines, stea- 
tites, etc., appears to be variable, at times owing to the 
presence of oxide of chromium (noble serpentine), at 
others of chlorite ; according to Berthier, an oxide of 
iron and manganese; and hence, in some places, associated 
with chlorite shists and chloritous spilites (IMa'den Rapur, 
Durdun Dagh*), 

* In connexion with this order of ideas, it is worthy of remark, 
that talc, considered as a simple substance; laminated, scaly, or com- 
pact; gray, green, or white; not elastic; easily scratched; infusible; 
with a composition, M, Si® en M. Si, according to Berthier; is generally 
mixed with M. Aq., the composition of native magnesia or Brucite, 
according to Dr. Fyfe. It is associated with serpentine in the mineral 
called Marmolite, a gray or greenish substance, with a foliated texture, 
and not flexible; and which, by its composition, would appear to be an 
hydrated olivine ; a circumstance which has been admitted by Beudant 
as strengthening the opinion of that substance being nothing but a 
talcose matter, strongly calcined or melted. Talc is further associated 


DiaUage Rocks. — ^Tbe rocks Ti-hich contaiii diallage 
most frer|uent in the mountain chain, are, Diallage rock, 
an aggregate of crystals of diallage, chiefly metalloid 
diallage, but sometimes green-coloured, lamellar ; Ophio- 
lite, an intimate mixture of diallage and a green-coloured, 
horn-like basis, with a cerous lustre, which may be in 
various places ; talc, steatite, serpentine, or jade or eupho- 
tide ; in which latter a similar silico-magnesian basis con- 
tains disseminated crystals of diallage ; and hence it be- 
comes the porphyritic rock of the series. 

Variotis Rocks. — In addition to the above-mentioned 
crystalline rocks, a number of different aggregates were 
met with in pebbles in rivulets, river banks, and on the 
sea shore, which apparently came from the same moun- 
tain chain, which was only very partially explored in its 
higher districts. Among these were rocks of serpentine 
and quartz ; of serpentine and limestone (Ophicalce, Al. 
Brongniart); of serpentine and hornblende; the two 
latter are abundant in the bed of Issus river. The pebbles 
on the shore at Iskenderun, consist almost entirely of 
limestone and syenites, serpentine and hornblende, helio- 
tropes, jaspers, and quartzes. 

to substances containing silicate of lime, in Wollastonite (Tafelspath). 
It also passes into steatite, of which, from Yauquelin's analysis, it may 
only bo a shistose variety ; or rather, steatite should be considered as a 
compact, fine, scaly, and cerous variety of talc. It is the same with 
regard to the pagodites, or figure-stones of China, which have not yet 
been fully examined, Nacrite, a substance consisting of white grains, 
each divided in little unctuous scales, of a pearly lustre, and met with 
in the micaceous and talcose rocks of the Alps, has similar mineralogical 


Metamorphic Rocks. — ^This is a subject of considerable 
difficulty, and upon which the details, from want of pro- 
longed researches, can only be approximative. Serpen- 
tines becoming slaty or shistose, are generally designated 
as steashists, to distinguish them from talc shist, which is 
a more perfect rock (one which preserves its normal 
characters through large tracts intact). The steashists of 
Amanus and Rhosus become anthracitous, and, on Jebel 
Kaiserik, contain beds of anthracite and pitchstone, at an 
elevation of 5000 feet ; but the most important change, in 
a geological point of view, is their passage into argillaceous 
shists, from the preponderance of silicate of alumina, and 
into sandstones, which belong to the tertiary period. At 
such a point of junction, as is well exhibited, for example, 
in the deep sections of the town of Beilan, in the pass of 
the same name ; the most common rock is a slate-clay, 
or argillaceous shist, with veins of calc spar; the next 
in succession is the same shistose or slaty rock, with dis- 
seminated paillettes of mica ; and these finally pass into 
coarse arenaceous, but slaty, sandstones. The slate-clays 
present two additional varieties : being of a light-greenish 
colour, where associated with steashists ; and still more 
frequently in the same associations, anthracitous, and 
varying in colour from blueish-black to indigo-black. 

When the same deposits are in contact with diallage 
rocks, as in the valley, west of Casius, they are converted 
into jasper, thermantides, and porcellanites. 

Formations at the Eastern Foot of Amantis. — It has 
already been shown, that at Ada-bum, in the parallel of 
Baias, but on the opposite side of Amanus, quartz rocks 
are associated with siliceous basalt and chalcedonic 


The quartz rocks along the eastern acclivity are some- 
times granular and compact, at other times become 
granular and loosely aggregated, and finally pass into 
arenaceous and sandstone rocks. As they approach 
Pagras, these sandstones are associated with conglome- 
rates and indurated limestones, which are beneath the 

Formations at the Southern Foot of Mhostis* — These 
are also chiefly limestones, conglomerates, and sandstones, 
which have contemporaneously tilted up on their sides, 
the bay formations of Antioch, the sandstones of the 
valley of the two Kara-sus, and the Pliocene marles of 
Swediyah, which latter rise high up upon the acclivities 
of the Musah Dagh. 

At Seleucia Pieria, the rocks consist of indurated lime- 
stones, tilted up by diallage rocks, which latter rise up to 
the north, nearly to the summit of the range ; but are 
overtopped, by a few hundred feet, by the limestones* 
This is in the Musah Dagh; for to the north, the Plutonic 
rocks rise to the summit of Jebel Kaisefik, according to 
Captain Beaufort, 5550 feet above the sea*. 

Formations at the Northern Foot of Jihosus. — The 
plain of Arstis is almdst everywhere occupied by a con- 
glomerate of pebbles from the neighbouring mountains* 
But on the shore, about three miles to the south-west of 
the village, there is a formation of coarse sandstones, 
containing gypsum in thin seams, fibrous, and transparent, 

* By barometrical observations, which can only be approximative, 
Jebel Kaiserik was 5326 feet in elevation ; the first cone westward, 
5216; the second, 6091; limit of pine-forests, 2750 feet; bivouac 
station, 2975 feet. 

AMANlft AND RH0SU8- 319 

from a quarter to three-quarters of an inch in thickness ; 
and also large and small nodules of the satne mineral, 
lamellar or opaque, snow-white, and radiated. The sand- 
stone beds are from two to three feet in thickness. 

A country of low hills extends at the foot of Rhosus, 
from Arsfis to the plain of Iskenderun, which the author 
had not an opportunity of examining. 

Formations at the Western Foot of Amanus. — Marshes 
of Iskenderun. — ^The marshes in the neighbourhood of 
Iskenderun, of such melancholy celebrity, for their fittality 
to Europeans ; appear to occupy a spot taken from the 
bay, by the gradual accumulation of gravelly detritus ; 
causing a gradual increase of land, ultimately filling up 
the inlet, and shutting out the sea ; while, at the same 
time, the interior being lower than the bank of detritus 
on the shore, has caused the waters of 'abundant springs 
(Jacob's well) to spread themselves over the land. These 
have, however, in later times, been much drained. At 
present, the marsh is formed of a boggy soil, containing 
much iron and mud, with Anodont8B and other fresh-water 
shells ; while below, beds of sands and marles, with recent 
marine and littoral shells, were turned up in digging 
the drain. 

The building of Godefroy de Bouillon's Castle, would 
indicate a change in the condition of the soil ; and in an 
old Italian chart, the author has seen it marked as close 
to the shore, from which it is now nearly a mile distant. 
Major Bennell proposed an examination of the state of 
the castle, in order to compare its height from the present 
level, as compared with that reported by Mr. Drummond 
about 70 years ago. The difference of level, however, in 


alluvia deposited in a scarcely tidal sea, does not, in the 
intervening valleys, indicate the increase of new lands, so 
much as the difference in horizontal distance. 

Sal^al Tutduy " Gates of SyHar—The hills, of little 
elevation, which approach the sea, just as they were 
described in the time of Alexander^ are formed of a 
coarse limestone conglomerate, apparently a mere mass of 
detritus; the ancient road, which passed through the gate, 
called erroneously Jonah's pillars, is now carried away, 
and the causeway has to be carried about 100 yards 
higher up the hill side. 

Plain of Kersus^ or Merkets Su- — ^The plain of the 
river Kersus, backed by the Mons Crocodilus of Pliny, 
and washing the walls of the Gates of Xenophon, consists 
in part of marsh, and the remainder of alluvial deposits, 
which encroach little, if anything, upon the sea. 

Plain of Baids. — ^The plain of Baias is more elevated, 
and advances in two separate headlands ; the present Ras 
Baias, and the Eskl Ras Baias. Between the northern 
river (for there are two) of the plain of Kersus and the 
first headland, there is, on the shore, a formation of slaty 
conglomerate, which consists of pebbles, from the size of 
a pin's head to that of a pigeon's. The cement is calcareo- 
siliceous, and the pebbles are quartzes, jaspers, and ser- 
pentine. The rock lies in nearly horizontal beds, which 
are fissured Uke a tesselated pavement, and are much, 
sought after, for tomb-stones. 

This rock appears to have been formed in the sea, 
towards which it has a slight inclination; and being newer 


than the recent fonnations of Swediyah, may not unlikely 
have been raised up by earthquakes, even since historical 

A limestone conglomerate, consisting of angular- 
shaped masses, as well as rolled pebbles, of limestone and 
other rocks, forms almost all the plain of Bayas, and the 
country of Issus. At the head of the Dell Chai, or Issus, 
this deposit rises into hilly ranges, and forms a lofty 
country at Koi Cha'i and Ursili. 

At Eski Ras Bayas, the limestone breccia is covered 
by a calcareo-arenaceous and slaty conglomerate ; and at 
Arsus, in a similar manner, a deposit of limestone breccia 
reposes, in the hills south-west of the harbour, upon a 
breccia of serpentines and diallage rock, in a calcareo-sili- 
ceous cement. 

Formations with recent Shells and Pottery (Terrains 
Ceramiques). Captain Beaufort has already remarked, 
that on some parts of the coast, " the gravel beach was 
found to be petrified into a solid stratum of pudding- 
stone." (" Memoir of a Survey of the Coast of Karamania. 
By Francis Beaufort, F.R.S., Capt. H. M. S. Frederick- 
stein, 1820.") At the headland west of the basaltic 
districts, on the west side of the bay of Iskenderiin, there 
occurs a breccia formed of pebbles of argillaceous sand- 
stones, with shells of the shore and sea. On the shore, 
about five miles east of Ayas, Madreporites had become 
cemented by calcareous matter, with numerous Trochi, 
and other of the most common littoral shells, and various 
pebbles, into a hard breccia. Between this and the town 
of Ayas, there occur some recent deposits, which stretch 
in continuous beds, for the distance of half a mile at a 



time, and consist sometimes of pebbles of sandstone, 
encased in a limestone cement, fiill of recent shells, but 
more frequently of calcareo-arenaceous cement, full of 
the shells of the shore, and of species thrown up fronoi the 
shallows or the deep sea, and containing in one place 
fragments of tile and earthenware vessels, derived firom 
an old pottery in the neighbourhood. 

Isstis. — An alluvial plain separates the village of Ursill 
from the ruins of Issus, or Nicopohs, which is built upon 
the edge of a dark and barren district of felspatho- 
pyroxenic rocks. This district, at first level, but very 
stony afterwards, rises into hills, and presents massive 
and vesicular rocks, basalts, basanites, dolerites, trap, and 
trap tufa. 

jRidge of Castabalum. — ^The felspatho-pyroxenic rocks 
are succeeded by long low ridges of sandstone, remarkable 
for their regularity and parallelism, as also for the regu- 
larity and symmetry of the beds, and coursing nearly east 
and west as far as to the Kara Kapxj, or Cilician Grates. 

These sandstones are quartzose, and, like a millstone 
grit ; or argillaceous, and of a light and friable texture, 
and a deep-brown colour. The beds dip at a slight angle 
to the north, and the basseting edges crop out naked to 
the south. This sandstone in contact with the Plutonic 
rocks becomes an indurated claystone, and very often 
assumes a globular developement, as on the plain of 
Orontes near Armanas. 

Beyond Castabalum to near Ayas, the country is 
occupied by low hills of felspatho-pyroxenic rocks, asso- 
ciated with sandstones and limestones. 


Cape Kara Dash. — In contact with the limestones, the 
sandstone becomes marly, and is penetrated by thin veins 
of calc spar, as is particularly observable at Kara Dash* 
At the same point, parallel ledges of sandstone project in 
a south-west direction into the sea, while others alternate 
with marly limestone, in beds that vary in thickness from 
two to three feet. The strata are at times very fiexuous 
and contorted, and these bendings in the rock are so fre- 
quently repeated, within a short distance, as to bring the 
beds at right angles to one another thrice within the 
space of 40 yards. The sandstones succeed to the fel- 
spatho-pyroxenic rocks a few miles to the east of Ayas. 

Sandstones East of Ay as. — ^These sandstones extend 
in low ranges of rounded hills, with wide and flat inter- 
vening valleys, and advance irregularly to the sea-side, 
where they form cliffs, sometimes precipitous, or head- 
lands and bays of a sweeping and circular disposition. 

In these cliffs there occur, about a mile to the east 
of Ayas, thin beds of compact limestone, of a chestnut and 
ash-brown colour, with an even fracture, from two to three 
inches in thickness, and redolent with species of Ceri- 
thium. In the same neighbourhood were thin beds of 
lignite, and some of the more argillaceous beds were co- 
vered with efflorescences of Katherite or earthy aluminite. 

Deposits of thePyixunm (Jihun Su). — ^The chief causes 
of the rapid progress of the alluvial deposits at the mouth 
of the Pyramus, and particularly noticed by Strabo, are 
to be sought for in the friable and earthy character of 
the rocks and soil through which the river in a great 
part flows. 

X 2 


The operations by which these accessions of land are 
made, are very simple. The streams bring down trees, 
torn by their roots from shingly banks, and even cane 
rafts, which fix in the mud, and thus assist in causing a 
further accumulation. Numbers of these lay at the em- 
bouchures of the river. A bar is ultimately formed, 
which increases also on the outside by sands rolled over 
by the sea, and it is found, in wading from the shoals to 
the shore, that the line of inner currents is marked by 
mud on a clayey sub-soil, while the outer currents set 
over banks of sand. At the extreme of the bars two 
currents meet ; one caused chiefly by the wind acting on 
the sea, the other by the waters of the river stopped by 
the bars that lie before them. Hence, at the point of 
junction is another cause of accumulation, which, acting 
at a fixed distance from the mouth of the river, (which 
has an open passage for its central stream,) throws up 
banks to the right and left with a semi-circular dispo- 
sition. These operations have a natural tendency to con- 
tinue, till the lateral streams come in juxta-position with 
the shore, and the main stream is confined to its central 
course. Banks, such as are alluded to, occur two or 
three in succession; but when the mud by any cause 
accumulates round trees or other points of resistance in 
the interior of these semi-circular ranges, they generally 
assume a nearly circular form, from the acting forces 
being pretty nearly similar in all directions. 

The land thus once formed, the principal agent in the 
vegetable kingdom, which gives firmness and solidity to 
the new soil, is a species of Calamus, which sends out 
sub-ligneous creepers over the sands, some of which were 
22 feet in length, while new plants spring up two to 


each knot, or sometimes only one ; the knots being at 
first 18 inches apart, towards the end only 12 or 13. In 
some spots, more especially at the mouths of the river, 
some Cyperaceae assist in this early stage of reclaiming 
the soil. In other respects, there were not more plants 
— trailers or creepers with long roots — ^than are observed 
in similar circumstances in Britain, or in the Landes of 

The vegetation of these great alluvial tracts also con- 
sisted in spots of Cyperaceae, amid which grew an Eu- 
phorbia, the Apium graveolens, one or two Cruciferous 
plants, while an occasional Oleander flowered above. On 
the downs between the mouth of the river and Cape 
Kara Dash, the hills of moving sands were sometimes 
covered with wild vines of luxuriant growth, with honey- 
suckle, myrtle, Poterium spinosum, and other shrubby 
plants, while, in the interior, the Tamarix Gallica formed 
groves of antique-looking trees, 20 feet high, and beyond 
were plains of Salicornia and Salsola. Extensive salt 
lakes lie beyond the sand-hills, and occupy a great portion 
of the interior low lands to the east and west of Cape 
Kara Dash, and at the westerly ancient mouth of the 


CiLiciAN Taurus. 

Kara KapH (Black Gates). — ^In proceeding towards the 
felspatho-pyroxenic rocks of Issus, the Ostracite sand* 
stone becomes an indurated rock» and often assumes a 
globular developement, as in the plain of Orontes near 

Kurd Kiddk. — ^The Kurd Kulak hills are composed of 
limestones, which belong to the supra-cretaceous series, 
and course from N. 30° E. to N. 30° W. Single isolated 
hills of the same formation advance into the plain to the 

Jebd Elnur, or Mount of Light — ^The Jebel Elniir is 
separated from the Kurd Kulak hills by the plain of 
Tchokur Ovah (Valley of the Ditch). It is composed of 
diallage rocks and Euphotides, with veins of asbestos 
supporting limestones, and sandstones. The limestone 
rocks, which preponderate by much over all other forma- 
tions, rise in rude peaks, or form bold precipices, which, 
near the termination of the chain, in the plain to the 
north, form sometimes isolated hills, one of which bears 
the castle of Shah Maran, or Elam Kalat. The direction 
of the chain is from south-east to north-west. The lime- 
stone reposes upon the sandstone, and is therefore pro- 
bably a supra-cretaceous formation. 

Plain of Missisdh. — ^The plain of Misslsah, from the 
foot of Jebel Elnur to within a few miles of Adanah, is 


occupied by a coarse rubbly limestone, containing large 
Ostracea, and a limestone conglomerate of a red and white 

Plain of Tarsus. — From within three miles of Adanah 
to beyond Tarsus, in a westerly direction, the plain is 
composed of humus and alluvia, which have an average 
depth of from 20 to 30 feet, and repose upon rubbly 
limestone. These plains are mostly cultivated, and co- 
vered with villages. 

Falls of the Cydnus. — ^The country to the north of 
Tarsus rises gradually up towards the alpine region of 
Cilician Taurus, remarkable at this point for its bold 
precipices and rugged grandeur of scenery. The falls of 
the Cydnus, and the Grotto of the Seven Sleepers, are 
in an outlying range of supra-cretaceous limestones and 
limestone conglomerate. 

The river issues through deep ravines, with perpen- 
dicular walls of limestone, and, on entering the plain, falls 
over a ledge of rocks of limestone breccia, about 40 feet 
in width and 18 in height. 

First lowest Range of Hills.-^PTOceeding to the north- 
east, the outlying and lowest range of hills is composed 
of marles and gypsum, in the lower beds ; and superim- 
posed upon these, are beds of brecciated rocks. The 
gypsum is snow-white, granular or lamellar. This range 
is divided from the second by low, level, and often marshy 

Second Mange of HiUs. — ^The upper beds are composed 

328 cnjciAX tackus. 

of coralline limestone, grav, friable, fracture uneven, 
almost entirely composed of stony polypiferous masses, 
with stellifonn lamellae, or wared laminar furrows. 

The lower beds consist of green marles^ and greenish- 
white calcareous marles ; the first are argillo-calcareous, 
earthy, friable, greenish, brownish-green, and yellow ; the 
second are compact, even, and non-fossiliferous. 

This second range consists of low hills, rounded or of 
a conical form, frequently cultivated, with little wood, 
but often villages on the summits. 

ITiird Range of HiUs. — ^The upper beds consist of 
Ostracite sandstones, compact, earthy, friable, frequently 
divided on the surface into polygonal and rhombic masses 
like a tessellated pavement. Ostracea; (Ostrea and 
Avicula) are very abundant. An Ostrea, probably not 
different from Ostrea gigantea, attains sometimes from a 
foot to eighteen inches in length. 

The lower beds are composed of ferruginous sands, 
yellow and red, and sometimes of pink-coloured sand- 

Beneath these are argillaceous limestones, alternating 
with marles (valley of Yena Kushla), and with slaty beds 
(hill of village of Yiiriik). 

Fourth Range of HiUs. — ^The upper beds consist of 
blue anthracitous limestones, compact, fine granular, 
glistening fracture, blue and dark-blue colour. The 
lower beds are white limestones, compact, fine granular, 
or more cretaceous, with chalk fossils. Both beds appear 
to belong to the chalk formation. 


Mica Shist mth Limestone. (Cipolin of Alex. Bron- 
gniart.) — On the summit of this range, not far from an 
ancient Roman arch, and by an antique causeway; a 
fonnation is met with of mica, and argillo-calcareous 
shist, sometimes forming a solid shistose rock. 

The limestones after this begin to form a truly alpine 
country, sometimes towering up in lofty and perpendicular 
precipices, upwards of a thousand feet in height, at others 
forming lower and rounded hills, covered when not lofty 
with shrubbery and forest trees, but when lofty, with pine 
and fir alone. Sometimes the cliffs are tomb-excavated, 
as above the brook of Meserluk ; at other times, isolated 
knolls of limestone bear ruined castles, mostly Genoese. 

Ktde Boghdz. — ^The formation of the Kul^ Boghaz, 
the pass which carries the great Constantinopolitan road 
through the Cilician Taurus, presents pretty nearly a 
similar succession of deposits as above Tarsus. 

Tertiary Deposits. — ^At Khan Katlah Oghlu a traver- 
tine formation covers a marly, and limestone deposit. 

At the village of Durak, granular gypsum in ferrugi- 
nous sand and common clay. 

The sand and clay alternate beyond with sandstones, 
slaty, ferruginous, coarse-grained, in thin strata, and very 
determinate rhombic cleavage. 

Polypiferous or coralline limestone succeeds to the 
rhombic or Ostracite sandstone. The lithose polypi 
occurring isolated in groups, or at other times forming 
the whole mass of the rock. This formation also 
contains botryoidal haematites. 

The coralline limestone, or coral rag, alternates in its 


lower part with dark-coloured clays, which are replete 
>vith bivalve shells, belonging to the genera Tellina and 

At Khan Kusal Oghlu, ferruginous sandstones and 
sandstone conglomerate underlie the clays and poly- 
piferous limestones. 

Below Khan Sarashi, Cerithia and Conide limestone 
succeeds to the central chalk formation, and between the 
two formations is a deposit of limestone, breccia, and 
argillaceous shale. 

In the valley of Khan Kusal Oghlu, the Conide 
limestone descends in high precipitous cliffs to the south- 
east, which cliffs are deeply fissured and wrought into 
fantastic forms. To the north the limestone is capped 
by ferruginous sandstones, above which, again, are coral- 
line limestones; while to the south, beneath the coral 
rag and sandstones, are sandstone conglomerates. The 
friable nature of the three last formations has given rise 
to many curious effects of denudation ; tall columns and 
masses, in various fantastic forms, rising up from the side 
in picturesque profusion. 

The chalk formation of the Kule Boghaz is almost 
everywhere the same, — a hard and compact limestone 
containing few organic remains, and rising up in bold 
precipitous rocks, with castles on their summits; or 
sweeping circularly, as if to block up the road with their 
gigantic gates. When the acclivities are gentle, they are 
generally well wooded with fir, pine, and cedar ; and in 
the lower parts, the chalk becomes a pink-coloured lime- 
stone, sometimes argillaceous and slaty. 

Antiquity of Pass. — ^The pass through the Cilician 


Taurus is of the most remote antiquity, and dates as far 
back as the Assjnrian and Babylonian empires, having 
by some been referred to the great oriental road-maker, 
Semiramis. It is certain that both Xenophon and Alex- 
ander passed through it, and they did much for its 
improvement. In the present days, Ibrahim Pasha has 
rendered the pass still more formidable by numerous 
batteries. The author's researches did not extend beyond 
the summit-level of the pass, beyond which the Plutonic 
rocks probably make their appearance. 

Names of Hie Cilician Taurus. — ^The chain of moun- 
tains which extends, in a more or less circular manner, to 
the north-east from Kule Boghaz to Sis, is in the country 
itself variously designated, according to the tribe of Tur- 
komen who inhabit the districts, or the name of the 
chieftain who rules over them. The Ashirat, or tribes 
among the Turkomen, are generally designated as the 
sons (Oghlfi) of a certain father of the tribe ; and the 
chief of the AshirSt assumes that title peculiarly to 
himself. Hence a traveller having heard in one district 
that the name of the mountains was Blim^id^m Oghlfi, 
that designation has been given to the whole range, 
whereas, as far as the author could ascertain, there are 
between Kul^ Boghaz and Sis five different territorial 
possessions, which are Melanglnah Oghlfi, Karsan Oghlu, 
Mustiphfi Aghfi, Tekeli OghW, and Kusln Oghlu, north 
of Sis. 

Hock Formations. — ^The whole of this district consists, 
upon a large scale, of Granges of limestone, indurated 
cretaceous or supra-cretaceous limestones in three distinct 


ridges, consisting chieflj of conical or rounded sommitfi, 
linearlj disposed, and of nearly the same eleYation and 
magnitude. The most southerly ranges are divided by 
great ravines, like fissures with vertical precipices on the 
sides, which form remarkahle solutions in the continuitj 
of a rampart of rock, and allow of the passage of the 
feeders of the Sihiin, or river of Adanah. 

The country at the foot of the mountains is a low 
hilly district of sandstone, forming a girth of low rounded 
hills, almost everywhere covered with wood, ahout 20 
miles in width, and 70 in extent. The sandstones are 
red arenaceous or argillaceous slates, forming good flag 
stones, and sometimes tessellated or rhombic. The hills 
are low, but increase in height as they approach the 
central chain. 

The sandstone hills being chiefly formed by denuda- 
tion, were ranged in a direction of from north to south, 
as are also the intervening valleys, The valleys of the 
Urlinjah, of the Sihiin, and the Solaklat, contained large 
deposits of rude conglomerate, which denoted that these 
rivers came from a country of crystalline and Plutonic 
rocks, beyond the outlying limestone ridges. 

Territory of Sis. — ^At Sis, the country of tertiary 
sandstones ceases, and an uniform and level plain ap- 
proaches to the foot of the mountain districts, here 
formed of limestone ; and the plain is only interrupted by 
occasional rocks of the same rock indurated, which rise 
suddenly and in perfect isolation from the surrounding 
level ; such are more particularly the hills of Tiim, of 
Anaz^rba, and of Sis, and that of Shah Maran, all of 
which be^r on their summits castellated buildings. 


Territory of Kara Sis. — Kara Sis, or Black Sis, is a 
ruined castle, upon a high hill in the alpine country north 
of Sis. In approaching it, the formations consist of 
indurated limestones in which I did not detect any fossils, 
but which appear to be the same as the limestone of Sis, 
— a supra-cretaceous Conide, or Cerithia, limestone. Tra- 
vertine abounds on the acclivities. 

After crossing the first summit-level, the inner ranges 
of limestone, instead of being, as usual, prolonged in 
continuous uplands, were broken into disjointed parts, 
which formed bluff precipices, or towered up in bold 
conical or sharp-backed mountains, more or less isolated. 
The two most remarkable points of this kind were the 
seats of ancient castles ; to the north, Andal Kal'at, and 
to the north a little east, Kara Sis Kal'at. 

The limestones which formed the summit of these 
hills, reposed upon sandstones and altered rocks, through 
which the crystalline formations made their appearance 
at one or two places. 

The sandstones were coarse, arenaceous, and blue 
argillaceous, and argillo-calcareous beds, with lignites. 

The metamorphic rocks were: — ^talcose slate clay, 
and the same rock with disseminated mica ; a fissile uni- 
form slaty red rock, and white rubbly calcareous rock. 

The Plutonic rocks were serpentines and steashists, 
fissile and slaty, with veins of asbestos, and a brecciated 
rock of bottle-green fragments, in a cream-coloured, 
talco-argillaceous paste. 

Some lofty hills of limestone, called Kara Boghaz, 
stretch out to the east of north ; the sandstone districts 
are much cultivated, and abound in villages, the chief of 
which is called Mantar. The latter formation assumes a 


considerable developement to the east, where it extends 
itself between the Sis mountains and the limestone ranges 
of the interior. The sandstones, being for a time wanting 
on the southern acclivities of Cilician Taurus, appear to 
be thrown inwards, but soon make their appearance again 
in the hilly country north of Anaz^rba. 

Territm^y of Kdrs. — In approaching the hills near 
Kars, the alluvium of the plain is succeeded by coarse 
rubbly limestone, and at Kars, by an arenaceous con- 
glomerate with pebbles of limestone. 

Beyond this a country of sands and sandstones, which 
reposed upon a conglomerate rock. This country is cut 
up into ravines from five to eight hundred feet deep. 
The sandstones often formed high precipices of rock, 
dipping near Ajam BoYaji to the east, and pn the other 
side of the ridge to the north-west. 

North of Ajam Boiaji is a further country of sandstone 
and sandstone conglomerates, which led to a plain tra^ 
versed by the Jihun, and interrupted by three different 
knolls of limestone, which rose to the height of from 50 
to 200 feet above the level. 

Territmy of KurtdlL — North of the plain is a rocky 
district, which presents at first anthracitous argillo-eal- 
careous beds, associated in curved and contorted strata, 
with other beds, sometimes of a dark, and at others of a 
light-green colour; and above this formation are white 
and blue compact limestones and shales, alternating in 
regular stratification with coarse arenaceous sandstones. 
A breccia or grit of siliceous nodules in a calcareous 
cement, also accompanied the same formations. 


The sandstones are inferior to the limestones, which, 
from researches made the ensuing day, turned out to 
belong to the supra-cretaceous deposits. 

Durdun Ddgh. — Beyond the village of Kurtali the 
country begins to rise considerably, and in the immediate 
neighbourhood anthracitous steashists are observed crop- 
ping out of compact limestones, and soon afterwards 
through the inferior sandstones. A ravine, in compact 
limestones, associated with occasional steashists and talc 
shists, occurs beyond, and from this is an ascent over a 
white limestone shale belonging to the chalk formation. 

At this point a magnificent scene presents itself to the 
spectator. To the east four diflFerent valleys, — extend- 
ing almost at his feet, their steep acclivities clothed with 
forest-trees, — ^meet nearly at the same point, and at nearly 
a thousand feet below; while to the north, lofty and 
nearly vertical cliflfe of limestone appear to present an 
almost impassable barrier, above which rise the pointed 
and serrated peaks of the Durdun Dagh. 

Geology of Durdun Ddgh, — Geologically speaking, the 
Durdun Dagh consisted of quartz rock and quartz shist, 
which formed the loftiest summits, reposing upon mica 
shist and talc shist. The talc shist and quartz shist 
passed into one another by insensible gradations and a 
variety of rock products. 

The mica shist and talc shists were accompanied by 
Ampelites, red slaty rocks, clay slates, steashists, chlorite 
slate, and slate clays ; and talc shists and quartz shists, 
and their various resulting compounds, were broken up 
and altered by serpentine and actynolite rock. 


Mineralogical Characters. — ^The mica shists and clay 
slates were among the most uniform rocks in their mine- 
ralogical characters, but the other rocks presented great 
diversity. The talc shists occurred in their Normal form, 
as crystalline and shistose ; of a pearly-white and silver- 
white colour. When Anormal, they were, from the pre- 
sence of serpentine rocks, grajdsh-green, asparagus-green, 
and apple-green ; from the presence of various feroxides 
and hydrated feroxides, different hues of yelloW, brown, 
and red ; from carbon, various hues from blue to black ; 
and from carburet of iron, a shining metallic black. 

Talc and mica rock in its normal colour was light- 
coloured, with a semi-metallic lustre, but in its anormal 
colours, green, blue, and black. 

Talc and quartz rock in its normal colours was grayish- 
white, but was also coloured green, pink, and red. 

Quartz rock occurred in a crystalline, compact, and 
shistose form, and in its normal colour was gray and 
grayish-white ; but in its anormal colours, brown, reddish- 
brovm, yellowish-brown, pink, yellow, blue, green, dark- 

Mica shist passed into quartz rock, forming two rocks, 
one with a predominance of mica, the other with a pre- 
dominance of quartz. It is the same in the relation of 
mica shist and of quartz shist, and also of mica shist and 
talc shist, forming together six normal varieties, which 
are infinitely multiplied when we take into consideration 
the varieties produced by the anormal admixtures. 

The talc shist, both in its compact (serpentine) and 
shistose variety, passes into quartz rock and quartz shist, 
forming in the normal conditions a compact green-coloured 
rock, uniform, with a cerous lustre, and a rock of nearly 


similar appearance, but with a foliated or shistose frac- 
ture in one direction, and an uneven splintery fracture in 
the other. 

The Pasha at Mar'ash had in his possession a specimen 
of Gadolinite, which would appear to indicate the presence 
of Cerium or a Yttro-cerite in these rocks, from whence 
the mineral (preserved as a charm) was said to have come. 

Andbdt — ^At Anabat the rocks begin to change their 
characters ; blue and dark-coloured slaty rocks still pre- 
dominate, but were much decomposed, and over a wide 
extent of surface presented nothing but brown, dark- 
coloured, and ironshot shingle. The rivulet still bore 
down from the higher summit, quartz rocks and serpen- 

Dun-Karat. — ^In continuing to the district of Dun- 
Kal'at the shales presented the same appearances, almost 
everywhere decomposed superficially; a diminished in- 
clination of the acclivities was one of the results of this, 
and the country became more cultivated. 

The castle of Dun-Kal'at reposes upon blue and black 
shales, with vertical and transverse veins of quartz, and 
also veins of graphite or plumbago, which mineral more 
particularly abounded in the vicinity of Anabat. 

About a mile from the castle, the quartz rock, which 
everywhere alternates with the Phylladic rocks, reaches 
down to the water's-edge. The same rock occupies the 
summits of most of the surrounding mountains. 

Half a mile further, quartz shist was succeeded by 
serpentine (quartz and silicate of magnesia) with pyrites, 
and this again is succeeded by dark-blue limestones, 


338 ciuciAK TAcmrs. 

with chert, formhig abrupt rockj waBs riamg oat €€ Ik 

Qoaitz shists, with mica and occaaonallj Iqiidolit^ 
which latter passed into a light red and pink-colomed 
shist, were not nnconunon. 

Berond this limestone ridge, mica shist, modi decom- 
posed, bnt wared and contorted, showed itself with laige 
reins of milk-white qnartz, and was followed bj shistose 
rocks as before. 

DAnrKaTatj No. 2. — The conntiy at the second Don- 
Kal'at becomes low and cnltirated ; north of the Tillage 
are low hills of sandstone, abounding in laige Ostraceai 
and dipping at slight angles of inclination (5"" to 16*) 
between the points of north and west ; and this sandstone 
formation extends orer the whole of this tract of countiy 
as far as to the foot of Agha Dagh, or the mountain of 

Territory of Man^ash. — On the western side of the 
Agha Dagh, and on the banks of the Jihun, near the 
bridge, sandstones and conglomerates, alternating with 
one another, may be observed in nearly vertical strata, 
supporting nearly horizontal beds of breccia and sand- 
stones. The author had not an opportunity of exploring 
the organic remains of these interesting deposits. 

The Jihun has two great tributaries: one, west of 
Mar^ash, has its source at the Gul Bashi Dagh in the 
Bostan country ; the other is to the east, and flows from 
Taurus, north of the Jawur Dagh, till it enters the terri- 
tory of Mar'ash, and joins the other river to pass through 
Dfirdun Dagh. It is called 'Ak-su. 


Aghd Ddgh. — The Agha Dagh, in the line of its 
greatest extent, courses from south-west to north-east ; 
but, itself by its colossal magnitude almost isolated, is 
continued in a low line of hills to the north-east and to 
the north-west, in which latter direction the hills curve 
round to the west to join the Cilician Taurus. 

This mountain consists of sandstones and cretaceous 
marles that are very little indurated, and that repose 
upon steashists and diallage rocks. 

The valley or plain east of Mar'ash contains a tribu- 
tary to the Jihiin, which expands to the southward into 
several small lakes. Between this plain and the valley 
of the 'Ak-su is a country of low hills, mostly covered 
with fir-forests, and which is composed of steashists and 
diallage rocks, not supporting any extent of limestones 
and sandstones ; and hence probably its little elevation. 

Relation of the Jdwur Ddgh to Durdun Ddgh. — ^The 
Jawur Dagh or Amanus, curves round to join the Durdun 
south of the *Ak-su, but the rocks of elevation of the 
Jawur Dagh (diallage rocks and serpentines) are pro- 
longed, as we have just seen, in the hills east of Mar'ash, 
in a direction similar to that of Amanus, or from south- 
west to north-east, while the Durdun Dagh, with which, 
from the tilting-up of sedimentary formations, they appear 
to unite, differ in structure (mica shist and quartz rock), 
and have a different direction, viz., from south-east to 
north-west and west. 

Limestone District — ^The valley of the 'Ak-su separ- 
ates, to the east, the hills of diallage rocks from a country 
of indurated limestones, with occasional tracts of fel- 


spatho-pyroxenic rocks, which extend, in rocky and hilly 
barren districts, to the south as far as the territory of 
Kilf s ; to the south-east to the territory of Ain-Tab ; and 
to the east as far as Euphrates. 

The hills present a remarkable uniformity of elevation 
and of forms, generally flat-topped, with occasional steep 
acclivities, and open valleys and plains. 

The limestone is an indurated chalk, sometimes friable, 
cretaceous, and fossiliferous, and containing Ammonites, 
Belemnites, Terebratute, Crinoidea, and large lithose 
Polypi. In the lower beds it was compact, splintery, and 
non-fossiliferous. The beds were generally thin, often 
waved and contorted, and dipping in various directions, 
sometimes at high angles of inclination. 

The felspatho-pyroxenic rocks sometimes manifest 
themselves upon the summit of the ridges without alter- 
ing the configuration of the country, as about four miles 
east of the valley of 'Ak-sfi, or sometimes occur in the 
low plains, as at 'Ufa Jakli, rendering the-plain rocky and 
unprofitable, and in the valley of the Bekir Kara-su, 
where they are accompanied by altered rocks (therman- 
tides and calcareous spilites). 

The structure of the ranges north and south of the 
Bekir Kara-su is included in the geology of Euphrates, 
extending from Taurus southward. 




Actynolite Bock, — See Tremolite Bock. 

ApTianite. — (Haiiy, Leonhard, Brongniart); Comeene (Dolomieu); 
Homstone (Phillips). Earthy ; massive, solid ; texture half- 
hard ; diflScultly broken. 

ArgUhliU.'^ThGnBiQm ; Claystone (Jameson). Earthy ; soft texture ; 
massive structure ; rough feel. 

Argillophyre. — Then Porphyr (Werner); Claystone Porphyry, 
(Jameson); Paste of argillolite, with crystals of felspar; 
dull or vitreous, basis of uncrystallized almost earthy felspar 

'Basalt, — Black, sublamellar, granular; nearly compact texture; 
massive structure ; difficultly frangible ; fusible into a black 
glass. According to Boue, an intimate mixture of compact 
felspar and pyroxene. 

Dolerke. — ^Pyroxene and lamellar felspar; Augite Rock (MaccuUoch); 
Mimose (Haiiy); Greenstone (Jameson); Felspar and 
Titaneous Iron (Rose); Lamellar Albite and Augite 

Diorite, — (Haiiy and Brongniart); Griinstein (Werner); Ophite 
(Palassou). Essentially composed of hornblende and com- 
pact felspar. Lamellar and compact albite, and black or 
green hornblende (Rose). Orthose and hornblende (Beu- 

Diallage Bock. — An aggregate of crystals of green diallage, or of 
metalloid diallage, distinguishable from hornblende, and 
pyroxene, or augite, by scratching calc spar, and being fusible 
into a yellowish-gray scorium. 


Eeloffite. — Green lamellar diallage and garnets (Cordier, Biongniait); 
Green Uralite and Garnets (Haidinger, Mohs, Rose, 
Haltzmann, Walchner). 

Euphotide. — Yerde di Corsica, Gabbro (De Bach, Leonbard). 

of serpentine, of talc, of steatite, of jade, of petrosilex, of 
felspar, or even of opbiolite, with crystals of diallage. 
Basis of tenacious felspar (Labradorite) and diallage (Rose). 
Uniform porphyritic, with green or metallic diallage 
(Brongniart). Diallage Bock of Phillips. 

^d/jpir.-^Feldspar, Felspath, Feldspath). Compact Felspar. Uni- 
form, compact. I have admitted, pro tempore^ the Petro- 
siliceous compounds of Brongniart with the Felspathic rocks, 
but the addition of a portion of silez in the constitntion of 
the basis of Igneous Rocks, more especially Dolerites and 
Diorites, not only materially afifects their chaiacters, but is 
also connected with distinct geognostic relations. 

Fdspar Bock (Phillips). — ^Basis of compact felspar ¥dth crystals of 
felspar imbedded. 

HiymsUyne. — Basis of compact felspar ¥dth augite and chlorite 

Hypersthene Bock. — Texture lamellar ; structure fissile ; black ; 

Hypertthene Porphyry, — Basis of white or red felspar, more or less 
crystallized, with green or purple crystals of hypersthene. 
Hypersthene Syenite of Phillips. 

Hornblende Bock. — Amphibolite; Homblendegestein. Lamellar tex- 
ture ; structure either massive or fissile, — varieties, fissile or 
slaty. Hornblende Slate, Amphibole shisteuse; Hornblende 
schiefer. With green serpentine, bronze diallage, &c. 

Jade, — An intimate mixture of compact felspar and talc. 

Melaphyre.—'Blauck paste of petrosiliceous hornblende with crystals of 
felspar. Basis of black augite with crystals of felspar 


Ophiolite. — An intimate mixture of jade and diallage, serpentine and 
diallage, steashist and diallage, talc sliist and diallage, 
felspar and diallage, or of petrosilex and diallage. Fine- 
grained, uniform, green colour ; texture slaty. Felspar and 
diallage uniformly disseminated, fine-grained, soft, with in- 
distinct traces of crystallization (Brongniart). Paste of 
serpentine, or of talc, and diallage, with oxide of iron. 
Serpentine (Leonhard); Crystallized Diallage and Felspar 

Ophite. — Green Porph)iry; Serpentine; Griin Porphyx. Paste of 
greenish homblendic petrosilex, with crystals of green felspar. 

Petrosilex, — Compact, fine texture; translucid, different colours; 
scaly firacture : harder than steel ; fusible into a white glass. 

Serpentine. — Compact, uniform, hard; even texture; green colour; 
including rocks of compact serpentine, talc, steatite, jade, or 
Saussurite. Felspar and diallage, fine-grained and soft, with 
indistinct traces of crystallization (Phillips). 

SpUites, — Paste of basalt, dolerites, diorites, trap, wacke, ther- 
mantides, melaphjnres, porph3Tie8, ^c, with nodules of calc 
spar, semi-opal, chalcedony, agate, &c., or cavities lined with 
crystals of zeolite, mesotype, quartz, calc spar, &c., &c.; 
contemporaneous with, or posterior to, the paste. 

Steashist and Tcdc Shist, — Steatitic or talcose base, with a shistoid 
structure. Steatite is distinguishable from talc, inasmuch as 
the first is homogeneous, earthy, soft and unctuous to the 
feel ; the second, shistoid or sublamellar, with a silky lustre. 

Trap, or Trapp, — Earthy; almost compact texture; structure frag- 

Tremolite Bock. — Actynolite rock. Lamellar texture ; structure some- 
times fissile, sometimes massive. 

Var. a. With compact felspar and garnets. Amphibolite 
actinotique (Brongniart). 

Var. h. With serpentine, &c. Ophiolite grammatiteux 









^ii^ar JieA>r 


'»7e r^^ 

400 4 

J%ain, of J/lsihuv 

* i 









nil ni»»n 



•>8 ^ 

A ^ Ziiai4,Jmion' 

■ I I . 







the Treatise of De Lolme, with an HISTORICAL and LEGAL INTRODUC- 
Barrister at Law. Two Volumes, Octavo. 30^. 

** Thb Laws and Constitution of our own country are a species of knowledge in which the gentlemen of 
Bngland have been more remarkably deficient than those of all Europe besides. In most of the nations on 
the Continent, where the civil or imperial law, under different modifications, is closely interwoven with the 
municipal laws of the land, no gentleman, or at least no scholar, thinks his education is completed, till he 
had attended a course or two of lectures, both upon the Institutes of Justinian and the local constitutions of 
his native soil, under the very eminent professors that abound in their several universities. * * « « I think 
it an undeniable portion, that a competent knowledge of the laws of that society in which we live, is the 
proper accomplishment of every gentleman and scholar : a highly useful* I had almost said essential, part of 
liberal and polite education."— Blackstonb. 


BOONE, Minister of St. John's, Paddington. 3*. 6rf. 



forming part of the Labours of the Euphrates E:q>edition9 and published with the 
sanction of the Right Hon, the President of the Board of Control. By WILLIAM 
AIN8W0RTH, F.G.8., F.R.G.S., &c., Sui^eon and Geologist to the Expedition. 
With Illustrations, Maps, &c. 12s. 6d. 

m^m^^^m^0i^^^m00^ »»<i»<<»#i»-^r ^^m^m^mmm^ 


SOCIAL CONDITION, and NATIONAL ECONOMY ; iUustrated by Reference 
to her Physical, Moral, and Political Statistics and by Comparison with other 
Countries. By BISSET HAWKINS, M.D., Oxon., F.R.S., &c. 10*. 6d. 

*<»#>» J»»^^<W»<»»*^«#»0#>»»'*»»*»0»*»^»<*^*^*'» 


taining Descriptions, from personal knowledge, of everything worth seeing or 
knowing, within Twenty-five Miles of the Metropolis ; enlivened with Biographical 
and other Anecdotes, connected by History or Tradition, with the Places described. 
With a Map of the Environs. By JOHN H. BRADY, F.R.A.a 7#. 

CORONATIONS ; their Origin, Nature, and History; Descriptive 

Accounts of the Forms and Ceremonies, the Regalia and the Vestments, used at 
the Coronation of English Sovereigns since the Norman Conquest ; the Changes 
made in the English Ritual; and the most remarkable Ceremonies in the Coro« 
nations of Foreign Princes, and a Selection of Coronation Anecdotes. With 
numerous Illustrations. 4«. 6d. 



SOAMES, M.A., Author of The History of the Reformation; The Anglo-Saxon 

Church, &c. In the Press. 

This Work is intended to fill a long-acknowledged chasm in English literature, and especially in that which 
peculiarly oonoems the Churoh of England. Both Bomaniits and Proteitant IMasenters have been attentive 
to the important reign of Elizabeth, and by saying very little of each other, have given an invidious colouring 
to both the Church and the Govemmeait. The present woik Is meant to give every leading fact in sufficient 
detail, but to avoid unnecessary particulars. It reaches from the establishment of the Thirty-nine Articles, 
in 1563, to the Ilampton-Gourt Conference, in 1604. 


cension of Jesus Christ to the Conversion of Constantine. By the late EDWARD 
BURTON, D.D. 6s. 6d 

0**m*if*f**tnismmtmf»f m »t^*t m tmr»^ 


and General Character. By the Rev. HENRY SOAMES, M.A., Atithor of 
the History of the Rufortaation, A Nsw Edition. Ids. 6(2. 



in 1688 : embracing Copious Histories of the Thirty-Nine Articles, the Translation 
of the Bible, and the Compilation of the Book of Common Prayer. By THOMAS 
VOWLER SHORT, D.D. New Edition, in One Volume. Ids. 



of the Long Parliament to the Act of Uniformity. By tiie Rev. THOBfAS i 
LATHBURY, M.A. 12*. 


TRIALS aad SUFFERINOa By the Rev. W. PRIDDEN, M. A. 4*. 

To give to any Christian who has been taught to read his Bible some correct ideas of the state of fhe Chmeh 
of Christ, in the times that immediately followed the death of the Aposttes ; to show by TBtiouB aoeomtsaad 
passages, taken from writers of credit, some of the particular customs, ways of life, and habits of tfainUng, 
common among the first believers in our holy Religion; to point out also in what respects the Chareh(tf 
England has followed them ; in a word, to impart a general knowledge of the character of the Elarly Chiistiau 
during their gradual, but yet rapid, increase, from a mere handful of despised and perseonted -n^n t to a flit 
multitude scattered over nearly all the eaf th ;— such are the chief eliijects of this little wwk. 


of REVELATION. With Graphic lUxistrations. /n the Press. 

It is the ol\}ect of this Work to exhibit, from traces afforded in the records and monnmailp, both Bwuflgii 
profane, of the ancient world, an unity of purpose maintained by the all-controlling providence of CM. 

THE BOOK OF THE FATHERS ; containing the LIVES of 

CELEBRATED FATHERS of the Christian Church, and the Spirit of theff 
Writings. g^ lyr 

It is from the writingfs of those men, affectionately and justly styled the " Fathers of the Chimh • fM 
treasures of thought, of morality, of doctrine, and of historioal facts, have been drawn by soooeediK m» 
* * * * There are various causes why the works, and even the names, of the Early FathersTMBataMtf 
unlokown to many Christians. * * * * To Protestant readers, one great cause, perhaps the mostpowvdi 
of all, exists, and that is, the corruptions introduced into the Roman Catholic Church, in later aoe^ontte 
pretended basis of their authority ; the legends and miracles, interpolated with the nannttlYot oftairfiiv 
and deaths, and the perversion or exaggeration of their opinions. 


A HISTORY OF POPERY; containing an Account of tbe Origin, 

Growth^ and Progress of the Papal Power ; its Political Influence in the European 
States-System, and its Effects on the Progress of Civilization. To which are added, 
an Ebuunination ot the Present State of the Romish Church in Ireland $ a brief 
History of the Inquisition ; and Specimens of Monkish Legends. 9«. 6(/. 

Thk design of this work is to traoe the origin and growth of the temporal power of the popes, and its efllBotB 
on the political and soctalqnstem of Europe. Dootrinaloontroyerqrisayoided, and popery is ohieflyoonflidered 
In its relation to civilization, and the progress of knowledge. The authority which the Romish Church iaog 
held orer the minds and actions of men, and the incessant efforts made to resume that power, rendcf 
it of importance that all should know how such influence was acquired, and how exercised. 

The HISTORY OF LITERATURE ; containing a Popular View of 

the Progress of Learning from the Earliest Period . In Ae Pret*. 



Germany, Switzerland, and Great Britain ; and of its chief Promoters, Opposers, 
and Victims. By THOMAS FOX. 3«. 6rf. 



tensive series of PICTOiaAL ILLUSTRATIONa 3 Vols., 6*. 6d. each. 

TThb main purpose of the Family History op BsQLAXf> has heen to unite objects ^hich in such undertaMngs 
are not always found to coincide ; namely, to render the study of English History not merely instructive, but 
interesting and amusing. For this purpose, the greatest care has been taken to seize upon all those striking 
features in the detail of events, which not only convey to the mind of the reader a vivid picture of scenes past, 
but induce him to argue from effects to their causes. While the philosophy of history, therefore, is sedulously 
taught, it is taught in a manner calculated to gratify both young and old, by affording to the one class ample 
Boope to refleotirai ; to the other, matter that stirs and excites, while it conveys sound moral instruction. 

A HISTORY OF LONDON; with an account of the Progress of its 
Institutions, and Sketches of the Manners and Customs of its Peoplew By 

Of the Historic of London which have hitherto appeared, some have been too voluminous and costly for the 
general reader, and others too exclusively addressed to the mere citizen, the antiquarian, or the traveller. 
The object of the present Volume is to furnish in a tangible form, and at a small price, a general and popular 
view of the pit^ress of civilization, and of the origin and progress of those events which have raised London 
to its present importance. The work, however, is not confined to a history of events, but contains graphic 
pictures of the manners and customs of the people, thdr sports and pastimes at different periods, and the 
characteristic incidents of their domestic history. 



containing Accoimts of all the principal Nations of Antiquity. By W. C. TAYLOR, 
LL.D., of Trin. Coll., Ihiblin. J0». 6d. 

The design of this work is to supoply ^e student with an outline of the princqnl events in the annals of the 
ancient world, and at the same time to lead him to the consideration of the causes that produced the prin- 
cipal revolutions recorded. The geographical position, natural productions, and progress of civilization, in all 
the great monarchies and republics, have been diligently investigated, and their effect on the fortunes of the 
state pointed out. Thus the philosophy of history is made to illustrate the narrative without interrupting it 


taining the Rise and Progress of the principal European Nations, their Political 
History, and the Changes in their Social Condition ; together with a History of the 
CoLOKies founded by Europe«ns, and General Progress of Civilization. By the 
the Author of the Above. ]0«. 6d. 


LUTHER and HIS TIMES; a History of the Rise and Prepress 

of the German Reformation. By the Rev. J. E. RIDDLE, M.A., Author ot First 
Sundays at Church, bs. 

The following account of a Pantomime, said to have been acted before the Emperor Charles the Fifth, 
whUe attending a Diet at Augsburg, in the year 1530, conveys a striking representation of the German 
Reformation in its early history and progress. A man clothed in the usual habit of a doctor of divinity, aind 
having the name Capnio (the Greek word for Reuchlin) written on his back, first came upon the scene. He 
brought with him a bundle of sticks, some crooked and some straight ; and having thrown them down in the 
middle of the room, he went away. He was followed by a second, habited as a secular priest, and marked 
with the name of Erasmus, who took great pains in endeavouring to put the sticks in order and to make the 
crooked straight ; but, finding that he laboured in vain, he shook his head sorrowfully, and quitted the scene. 
Then came Dr. Martin Luther, in the dress of a monk : he set fire to the crooked sticks, and, when the flame 
\)egaxi to rise, withdrew. Hereupon the Emperor appeared, who, seeing the crooked sticks on fire, ran. into 
the midst with a sword in his hand, with which he endeavoured to extinguish the flamra; but by this means 
he only increased the conflagration. At last came the Pope : he wrung his hands with terror and \exaii<m, 
and looked about despairingly for some means of quenching the disastrous flames. Two vessels stood at a 
distance, one filled with oil, and the other with water. The pontiff, in his distress, laid hold of the vessel of 
oil, and poured its contents upon the burning mass ; so that, the fiame being nourished and roused to redoubled 
fury, the mischief became irreparable. — Luther and his Times, Ch. I. 


M.A., Vicar of Hales Owen. 3 Vols., 4*. 6d, each. 

Thb paths of good men are commonly so full of peace, and the sorrows which befall them so mercifully 
softened and blessed by a sacred infiuence, that few more pleasing or successful ways of recommending 
the fear and love of God have been found, than the publication of religious biography. With the dodgn of 
promoting so good a cause, by the blessing of God, these little volumes have been written ; and it is hoped that, 
in carrying it into execution, a fresh interest may have been given to the lives of these eminent persons. 


TEIGNMOUTH; with Notes, Selections from his Works, and a Memoir of his 
Noble Biographer. By the Rev. S. C. WILKS, M.A. 2 Vols., 10*. 6dL 

Sitt William Jones was not only the most eminent linguist, but in many respects one of the most remarkable 
men, of the last century ; and Lord Teionmouth's Memoir of him has been Justly accounted one of the most 
interesting, instructive, and entertaining pieces of modem biography. • ♦ • • To the present edition <rf 
this popular Memoir is prefixed a notice of its lately-deceased author ; who, though highly respected as an 
Oriental scholar, and raised to the peerage for his meritorious services as Governor-general of India, was 
yet better known tor the Christian virtues which adorned his character. 

♦LIVES OF SACRED POETS; preceded by an Historical Sketch 

of Sacred Poetry. By R. A. WILLMOTT, Esq. Trinity College, Cambridge. 


Thb first volume of these Lives presents as ample a view as its limits would permit, of tlie state of Sacrad 
Poetry in the reigns of Elizabeth, James the First, and Charles the First. 

V The SECOND and CONCLUDING VOLUME, commencing with Milton, 

and closing with Bishop Hebbr, thus forming a complete MANUAL of the 


is in the Press, 

* READINGS IxN BIOGRAPHY. A Selection of the Lives of Emi- 

nent Men of all Nations. 4j^ Qfj^ 

Thb design of this Mrork is to giro an account of the lives of the Leaders in the most important xevtdutioM 
which history records, from the age of Bosostris to that of Napoleon. Care has be^i taken to adiect tboM 
personages concerning whom information is most required by the historical student. All the liirea have bees 
compiled fsom original sources ; those of the Oriental Sovereigns, especially, are taken from OrfentM writoi^ 


THE LIFE OF D&. THOMAS YOUNG, F.R.S., etc. Foreign 

Member of the National Institute of France. By the Rev. GEO. PEACOCK, M.A., 
Fellow and Tutor of Trinity College, and Lowndes's Professor of Astronomy and 
Geometry in the University of Cambridge. Preparing for the Press, 

<^tf^<W>*>^»»*^<t»0»<ir^^i»»«»»'^» *»»»*» 

THE MERCHANT AND THE FRIAR; (Tkuths and Fictions 

of the Middle Ages). By SIR FRANCIS PALGRAVE, K.H., Keeper of 
the Records of the Treasury of Her Majesty's Exchequer. 8#. 

I HAVB been really quite surprised and aetonished at the strictly verbal agreements between many parts of 
Roger Bacon's published text and the hitherto inedited Manuscripts which I use. And this very singular and 
unaccountable coincidence is such a proof of the accuracy of the actual Chronicles from whose fragments this 
tale is rendered, that, if the reader chooses, he is at full liberty to conjectiu^ that all the remaining portions of 
the adve&tures of the Merchant and the Friar are given with equal fidelity. 

^^»rf^^»#*»i^>p sm^>0 ^prfw^>»<» j»i*»^#»o»»» 


from the Times of the Crusades. By T. KEIGHTLEY. Two Vols., 1 U. 

In this work, the Crusaders, the Greeks, Turks, and Saracens of the times of the Crusaders, are set before the 
view of the reader as they lived, thought, and acted. Theii* valour, their superstition, their ferocity, their 
honour, are displayed in as strong a light as the existing historical documents permit, and accurate descriptions 
aiid graphic illustrations exhibit the towns and scenery of Syria, and the other countries which were the 
theatre of the exploits of the Crusaders. 



This work contains a full account of the Mohammedan traditions respecting the origin of their faith ; an- 
account of the political, religious, and social state of the East, when first the doctrines of Islamism were 
promulgated ; a history of Mohammed's life, mainly derived from his 0¥m autobiographical notices in the 
Koran: an original Mohammedan Creed; and the fullest particulars that have yet appeared in English, of 
the leading sects that divide the Mussulmans, 



since the Conquest. By THOMAS FULLER, D.D. A new Edition, with ad- 
ditional Notes, by the Rev. M. PRICKETT, M.A., F.S.A., of Trinity CoUege, 
Cambridge. Preparing for Publtcation, 

LETTERS, STATUTES, and other DOCUMENTS, from the 

. MS. Library of Corp. Clirist. Coll., illustrative of the History of the University 
of Cambridge, during the time of the Reformation, from a. d. M.D. to a.d. 
M.D.LXXII., edited by JOHN LAMB, D.D., Master of Corpus Christi CoUege, 
Cambridge, and Dean of Bristol. XAs, 


By the Rev. WILLIAM WHEWELL, B.D., F.R.S. &c., Fellow and Tutor of 
Trinity College, Cambridge. 5i. 

*»»»*>.>» «»«^.#»»«» «!.»>.«»»»*» «»>»»»«» 


Mrs. TRENCH. With a Prefece and Notes, by the Editor. U. 6rf. 

Thx vfJuable and interesting little work now offered to the publio fell into the Editor's hands a short 
time ago, during her residence in Ireland ; and, anxious to be the means of diflbsing more widely thoughts to 
Hit, so pure, and intelligible, she has obtained permission to reprint them. 


UNIVERSAL MYTHOLOGY ; an Account of the most important 

Mythological Systems, their Ori^n and Connexion. By the Ifeev. HENRY 
CHRISTMAS, St John's ColL, Camb. Is. 

Thb most eminent scholars in all ages have made Mythology a part of their study. * * * * The Mythology of 
Greece and Rome has been studied almost exclusively, though neither the most important, nor the most 
interesting. The systems of the East and of the North, of Egypt and of China, would have illustrated the 
Greek and Roman fables, have cleared up their difficulties, and explained their allegories. * * * * The great 
end of studying Mythology should be, not to apply our knowledge merely to the solution of difficult passages 
in daasioal poetry, but to the moral and mental history of mankind. * * * * This object has been attempted 
in the present work. 

a» w» <»«>» »!»<»»» « <» *»<n«**#><«« 0»»tmiitr 


Principles of the Inductive Philosophy considered as subservient to Theology. By 
the Rev. BADEN POWELL, M.A., F.R.S., of Oriel CoUege, Savilian Professor 
of Greometry in the University of Oxford. 9*. 

NATURAL THEOLOGY considered chiefly with reference to Lord 

B&ouoHAM'fl Discourse on that subject. By the Very Rev. T. TURTON, D.D., 
Regius Professor of Divinity in the University of Cambridge, and Dean of Peter- 
borough. a«. 



All matter of controverqr between diffeorent Churches has been oareftilly excluded from these Lessons; so 
that they are adapted to the use of all professed Christians, of whatever denomination. The only question 
treated of is that which must be the basis of all others pertaining to Christianity :-^* ' Was it from Hoaven, or 
of Menr 

*»*I X ^» tfl# *»»>» »» 010 <»»#»»»N#^#»»I»»[<»#>#»<N#^^» 

CUDWORTH ON FREEWILL ; now first Edited from the Original 

MS., and with Notes by JOHN ALLEN, M.A., Chaplain of King's CoUege, Lon- 
don ; being the First Part of the ETHICAL WORKS of RALPH CUDWORTH, 
D.D., sometime Master of Christ's College, Cambridge. 3f . 


NEW TESTAMENT by the Early Opinions of Jews and Christians concerning 
Christ. By WILLIAM WILSON, B.D., late Fellow of St. John's CoUege, 
Cambridge. A New Edition, carefuUy revised. St. 



the First Ages, and the Writings of the Pythagorean School, examined, with 
reference to the Knowledge of the Trinity ascribed to Plato, and other ancient 
Philosophers. By ROBERT MUSHET, Esq. Ss. 6A 


by an OXFORD MAN. 3,^ g^ * 

On CoNTBRfiATioN.— Definition ; Qeneral Rules of Conversation ; General Faults of ConvanMtlan • 

Characteristic Traits of Men eminently gifted with Conver»tiQtial Powers; Swift'j ludicrous AnaloffT 

between Carving and Conversation. Canons of ConvOTsation. ^^ 

0* CluACK>iiT.r..J)efinition; Ptofesslonal and Literary i^uacks; Puffe of Literary Men* CharUtiuuirift 

Sruditoriian s lUastratiom; l^RMwUtag Qwaks; Quackery of Books of Travels. ' wHons 



choice Speeimens of the Works of the best English Writers, from Lord Bacon 
to the Present Time. With Essays on the Progress of English Literature. 

49. ed. 

This volume is intended to furnish the general reader with some raluable speeimens of Wnglish prose compo- 
sition. They are taken from the works of those writers who have chiefly determined the style of our prose 
literature, and are not only in themselves instructive and entertaining, but are also of sufficient variety, and of 
ample length, to render the reader familiar with the beauties and the peculiarities of the various writers. Biogra- 
phical sketches of the authors, and notices of the times whorein they flourished, are also introduced; and upon 
the whole, it is helped, that the volume wiU be found a useful intooduotlon to the systematio study of our 
national literature. 


TION ; adapted to the use of both sexes, by the Rev. J. EDWARDS, M. A., Master 
in King*s College, London. 2s. 6d. 

Two great obstacles beset the pupil in his first attempts at composition. The first is the difficulty of obtaining 
ideas ; the second, that of properly expressing them, la this little vcdumc the author has endeavoured to 
affoord some assistance to the pupil in overcoming both these difficulties. 

lected by ANNE PARKER. 3«. 6rf. 

Without insisting upon the value of Fables, in the direct business of education, the pleasore with which the 
are almost universally perused by yoimg people, and the agreeable facility with which they may, consequently 
be made the medium of a certain kind of instruction, cannot be denied. It, however, dngularly happens, 
that, of the numerous collections published from time to time, a large majority, and particularly some which 
are known as School Editions of JSsop's, and of Gay's, Fables, abound in subjects and expressions, not 
merely repulsive from their coarseness, but more gravely ol]jectionable, from their anti-social, and, frequently* 
immoral, tendency. • • • • Every objection of this kind has been wholly avoided in the present work. • • • • 
Most of the favourite old Fables, in the best Ck)llections, are retained; but, in accordance with the plan of 
this work, the liberty of altering objectionable passages has been freely exercised. 



RECTORY. 3s. dd. 

The Village. I The Good Aunt. | The VaLAGE ApoTHBCARr. 

The Retired Tradesman. | The Village Schoolmaster. | The Deserted Wipk, 

The Family at the Hall ; cfin, Pride and Poverty. 



Gi^KAT care and attention are bestowed in ad^ting this cheap and popular Magazine to all classes of Readers, 
so tbiat it may with propriety be introduced into Families and Schools, and among Young People in general. 
Its contents are at once instructive and entertaining; Religious, Moral, and Social Principles are combined 
with Useful Inf(»mation, and a Christian character and tendency is given to Popular Knowledge. Its pages 
are extensively illustrated by Engravings on Wood, which comprise Portraits, Views, remarkable Objects in 
Antiquity, Science, and Manufactures, the various branches of Natural History, and, indeed, whatever is 
curious and interesting in Nature and in Art. It is published Weekly, in Numbers, at One Penny, and 
Monthly, In Parts, at Six Penoe ; also, in Half- Yearly Volumes, at 4i. 6d., and Annual Volumes, at 7s. 6d. 

o»*» m^m0m0 o» mg ^immm^t^m^m^'^i^^i^^i*' ^10 


BRITAIN and IRELAND; contaming Original Papers^ relative to the History 
Manners and Ciustoms, Laws, Religion, Natural History, Arts, Commerce, Manu- 
factures, and Productions of the THE ORIENTAL WORLD. Contributed by 
Members and Corresfoitdekts of the Society at Home and Abroad « 

Published Quart^ly, 6f . 


A HISTORY of the INDUCTIVE SCIENCES, from the Earliest 

Times to the Present. By the Rev. WILLIAM WHEWELL, B.D., F.R.S., etc. 

Three Vols., 21. 2#. 

'* A JD8T story of learning, containing the antiquities and originals of Knowlkdobs, and their Seots, 
their inventions, their traditions, their diverse administrations and managings; their flourishings, their 
oppositions, decays, depressions, removes, with the causes and occasions of them ; and all other events oonosm- 
ing learning, ttiroughout all ages of the world ; I may truly aflirm to he wanting. The use and end of which 
work, I do not so much design for curiosity or satisfaction of those that are lovers of learning ; hut chiefly for 
a more serious and grave purpose; which is this, in few words; that it will make lefumed men more wise in 
the use and administration of learning." — Bacon. 


a Greneral Survey of Music from the earliest Period to the Present Time. By 
GEORGE HOGARTH. A new and enlarged edition^ in Two Volumes. 10«. Od. 


consisting of a Series of Essa3rs on Subjects connected with the Present State of 
Painting, Painters, and Patronage, in this country. 

Preparing for the Prea. 

HINTS TO GAS CONSUMERS; comprising Practical Informa- 
tion on the following subjects : — 

I. Thx General Properties of Coal-Gas. 11. Its Cost, as compared with other modes of Illmnination. m. The 
Convenience, Safety, and Utility of Gas-Light IV. Management and Economioal Use of Gas. Y. Gas- 
Fitters and Gas-Fittings. YI. Gas Stoves. 

It. W. 


Original Experiments and Instructions in ELECTRICAL MANIPULATION. By 
W. SNOW HARRIS, F.R.S., &o. Preparing for the Pre-. 

<»»<» ^» *^»^»^<» <<»»#»*»»*»<» *»■*<»*>» ^i*i*» 


Judge and Magistrate at Bangalore. With Forty- eight Plates. 1/. 1 1#. fUL 

Published for the Royal Asiatic Society of Qreat Britain and Ireland. 


Prof. Chem. R.I., and of Her Majesty's Mint. 30t, 

Althouoh Three Editions of the Maniud of Chemistry have already appeared, the present may be oon- 
sidered as a new work. It has heen almost wholly re-written; everything new and important in the fttrj fn fift 
both in English and Foreign Works, has heen embodied; it abounds inreferenoM to Authorities ; and no f ^^m 
have been spared to render it, in every respect, valuable, as a Text-Book for the Lecturer, and as a M^**"^? for 
the Chemical Student. It contains a connected view of the present state of the Science, praetUdl umd 
theoretical, and is prefaced by an Historical Skxtch or thb Risk aitd Proobxss or Cbbmioai. Phii^mwhtx 
it is illustrated by nearly Three Hundred Wood-Cuts, and by numerous Diagrams and TdtOet. ItiedlTUsi 
into Three Parts, forming a very thick Octavo Volume ; but it is so arranged, that each part may bt \mmi 
separately, with separate Titles and Contents. The Index is upon an extended scale, and rendem tbe 
aooesBlUe aa a DicTioNARv or Chbmistry. 


* POPULAR PHYSIOLOGY ; being a familiar Explanation of the 

most interesting Facts connected with the Structure and Functions of Animals, and 
particularly of Man ; adapted for general Readers. By PERCEVAL B. LORD, 
M.B. With numerous Engravings. 7«* 6d!> 

To trace the finger of God in the works of creation, to consider " the wonders that he doeth amcuigBt the 
children of men," has ever been a source of the purest and noblest gratification, — ^that moral gratification 
which a well-framed mind naturally experiences in contemplating Infinite Power working out the dictates of 
Infinite Goodness,— that intellectual satisfaction which attends upon our being allowed, even imperfectly, to 
comprehend some small part of the designs of Infinite Wisdom. With such a view are we presented in this 
volume, which, taking for its subject the animal body, and more peculiarly that of man, explains the various 
ocmtrivances by which he is enabled to **live, move, and have his being;" shows him, first, as consisting of 
numerous sets of organs, all performing different offices, yet all conspiring with beautiful harmony for the 
benefit and preservation of the whole; then views him as an individual, his organism animated by one vital 
principle, and directed by one mind, situated in the midst of numberless other beings, with whom he is destlnea 
to maintain relations, principally by means of his external organs of sense. 


MOSELEY, M. A., Professor of Natural Philosophy, King's College, London. With 
numerous Engravings. 68, BeU 

This work contains treatises on the sciences of Statics and Hydrostatics, comprising the whole theory of 
Equilibrium. It is the first volume of a course of Natural Klllosophy, intended for the use of those who 
have no knowledge of Mathematics, or who have made but little progress in their mathematical reading. 
Throughout the whole, an attempt has been made to bring the principles of exact science to bear npoil 
questions of practical application in the Arts, and to place the discussion of them within the reach of the more 
intelligent of that useful class of men who are connected with the manufactures of the oountiy. 

ARTISANS AND MACHINERY; the Moral and Physical Con- 
dition of the Manufacturing Population considered, with reference to Mechanical 
Substitutes foi: Human Labour. By PETER GASKELL, Esq., Surgeok. 6». 

Thx absence of a work devoted to an examination of the Moral, Social, and Physical condition of more 
than three millions of our fellow subjects, men, women, and children engaged in the arts, manufactures, and 
trade of the country, has been long deemed a serious evil. The vast importance of the subject, and the 
numerous interests connectedwith it, render a dispassionate inquiry not only highly desirable, but with a view 
to its influence upon the community at large, absolutely necessary. 


some of the most interesting Appearances and Piinciples in NATURAL PHILO- 
SOPHY. With many Engravings. 5*. 

This vcdume differs materially from previous publications having the same object, namely, that of rendering 
the path of science easy and inviting to b^;inners. The chief differences will be found in the order of the 
subjects. In the manner in which they are treated, in the examples by which principles are illustrated, and 
in certain reflections and remarks, not generally introduced into scientific writings. 



Complete in Four Volumes, Octavo, price £2 16*. 

This work furnishes the general reader with popular and connected views of the actual progress and condition 
of the Physical Sciences, both at home and abroad. The Mechanical Arts, Dietetic Chemistry, the Structure 
of the Earth, Electricity, Galvanism, Gas, Heat, Light, Magnetism, the Mathematical Sciences, Philosophical 
Instruments, Rain, Steam, the Cometary System, Tides, Volcanoes, &c., have, among many others, been 
developed in original communications and discussions, abounding in the fireshest facts, the most recent 
diaopveries, and the latest intelligence^ which an indefatigable examination of the products of Sdentifio 
Research, at home and abroad, has been able to furnish. 

The Sciences of Astrokomy, Chbmistry, and Gkology, are comprehensively, but popularly, treated in a 
series of papers, framing regular and complete Ck>urBe8 on those several Snliijeets. 



ciples ftnd Ob)eeU of the NEW ZEALAND ASSOCIATION ; together with 
Particnlarg ooncerning the Poeition, Extent, Soil and CUmate, Natural Frodnctions, 
and Native Inhabitants of New ZesJand; with Cihaits and Illustrations. 4«. 6d. 



Judge of the Civil Court and Criminal Sessions of Furrakhabad. 2 Vols, 28«. 

Tm fewts and opinion* contained in this Work axe the result of more than fifteen years' residence in India*— 
during which p^od the Author held yarious situations in the PoUoe, Revenue, and Judicial Departments, 
and was in habits of close communication, both Private and Official, with all classes of the Natives. 


order of the KING of DENMARK, in SEARCH of the LOST COLONIES j with 
the Chart, completed by the Expedition. Published under the Direction of the 
Royal Geographical Society. 8s. 6<L 



of the ISLE of MAN ; Descriptive of the Scenery, and illustrative of the progrefisive 
Revolution in the Condition of the Inhabitants of those Regions. By LORD 
TEIGNMOUTH, M.P. 2 Vols., with Maps, 21«. 


THE WEST INDIES; the Natural and Physical History of the 

Colonies; and the Moral, Social, and Political Condition of the Inhabitants, before 
and after the Abolition of Negro Slavery. By SIR ANDREW HALLIDAY, 
K.H., M.D., F.R.S.E., &c. With Maps, 10*. W; 

■ *• r>ri->*r* i - ■ * i r^rv^v^lr^M^lr^ i ~>rM^^ > ~ ^ r^o ^ -»-^ > rM^»^J^J 


many Engravings. 3^ 

A LiTTLX volume from the traveller's notes. Descriptions of Baalbec, Beirot, Damietta, Jaffa, Jermalem, 
Ramlah, and other places, are blended with rranarks upon the natives, the incidents of the journey, and the 
observations and reflections which naturally occur to a Ckxgyjxasa in travelling through the Holy Land. 



Account of Pitcaim's Island, and the Mutiny of the Bounty. With EngravingB. 

2s, M. 

^^■^■^^^■^■^^^^I^^^^*^^ ^ * ^ * ^* M "»^>*V > f>»1JW>\^ 




MUNGO PARK; his LIFE and TRAVELS : with an Account of 

his Death, from the JOURNAL of ISAACO, the substance of later BiacoTeriai 
relative to his lamented Fate, and the Termination of the Niger. 2«. 6dL 

TWO YEARS at SEA ; being the Narrative of a Voyage to the Swan 
River and Van Diemen's Land ; thence, to various parts of India. With Notei tof ft 
Residence in the Burman Empire, and of the Services and Sufferings of the IM&raia* 
aries in that Country. By JANE ROBERTS. With Engravingg^ fi^ 


* A FAMILIAR HISTORY of BIRDS ; their Nature. Habits, and 

Instincts. By EDWAED STANLEY, D.D., F.L.a, Lord Bishop of Norwich; 
President of the T-mnman Society. Two Vols., with EngniTings. New Edition. ^». 


* DOMESTICATED ANIMALS considered with reference to Civili- 
zation and the Arts. With Engrayings. By MARY ROBERTS. 3^. 6(2, 


* WILD ANIMALS; their Nature, Habits, and Instincts; and the 
Regions they inhabit. With Engravings. By the same. 3^. 6d 


THE HOUSE I LIVE IN; or Popular Illustrations of the Structure 
and Pnnctions of the Human Body. Edited by T, C. GIBTIN. 2*. 6* 

< < I am fcMiully and wanderfiilly made f ** 
Thx House I Live in, is a corious building, one of the most curious in the wmrld. • • • • You cannot closely 
behold it without being struck with the wisdom displayed in its design, nor without feeling the mind elevated 
and improved by a contem];^tion of that goodness whieh has provided everything to admirably adapted ta 
the purposes intended to be fulfilled. 

^mr^mramfrntt^mtr^^m n ^m^a^rm^t^it^^* 

* MINERALS AND METALS ; their Natural History and Uses iu 

the Arts : with Accounts of Mines and Mining. Engravings, 2«. M. 

Familiar as we are, from our earliest years, with the various articles manufiictnied from the Metals, for 
purposes of use and comfort, the nature and properties of the metals themselves, and the means by which 
they are obtained, are comparatively little known. With a view of supplying that knowledge, in a popular 
and attractive form, this little volume has been prepared ; and as the otjject has been to make it entertaining 
as well as instructive, it is neither of a chemical, mineralogical, cosmmerdal, nor historical diaraoter, tmt 
oom^rises something of each of these features, in addition to being descriptive. 

Qiwur »»»»i»«'«»«l»»**r**<i»«*<i»» ffitttip m m 

* The ELEMENTS of BOTANY. With many Engravings. New 

Edition, Enlarged and Improved. 29. 

Tnv principles of this beautiful and important science are explained in a clear and simple manner* so as to- 
render, the aoquisitian of them compar a ttvtdy eaqr. The book is illustrated by numerous cuts of the different 
parts of plants, ftc, and the examples, when possible, are selected from our own wild flowers, or from those 
cultivated in all gardens or fields, and they are dted by their familiar names. A Glossary of terms usually 
employed is subjoined, and an Alphabetical List of the most useful plants, with their botanical names, ^c. 

♦ The BOOK of TREES ; describing the principal Timber Trees, and 

the larger species of Pakns. With numerous Engravings. 2«. 

BOOK of REPTILES. BOOK of SHELLS. 1«. 6d. each. 

In this series of popular books the nature, habits, and uses of the various olgects described, are presented in 
a correct, though simple and attractive, form, but no recourse is had to the marvellous. Upon the whole, It i» 
trusted, that these little volimies will be found a tusefiil addition to the stock of books for young persons, and 
acceptable introductions to works of a higher class. The whole are profusely illustrated with Engravings. 

<»»i<(^#»»»^^^»i»»*»i»»>»>»i<>»HW><^ <»<^<tf«<» j^ 

BRITISH SONG BIRDS; Popular Descriptions and Anecdotes of 
the British Choristers of the Groves. By NEVILLE WOOD, Esq. Is. 


Ornithological Works, published from a.d. 1678 ; with other Topics of Interest 

connected with Ornithology. By the Author of tlie above. As, (kU 


THE SATIRES and EPISTLES of HORACE, interpreted by 

DAVID HUNTER, Esq., M.A. 4«. 6cA 

THE BRITISH MONTHS, a Poem, in Twelve Parts. By 
RICHARD MANX, D.D., Lord Bishop of Down and Connor. 2 Vols., 9«» 


* READINGS IN POETRY. A Selection from the Works of the 
best English Poets, from Spenser to the present times; with Specimens of the 
American Poets ; Notices of the Writers; and Explanatory Notes. 4a. 6ct 

A MAinjAL of Poetry, oomprising the gems of the standard Rnglish Poets. Care has been taken to seleot 
such pieces and passages as best illustrate the style of the respective Authors, and it is scarcely neo coDDr y to 
add, that scrupulous attention has been paid to the moral character of the extracts. 



Aa poems of great beauty and high literary merit,— productions which at once do honour to their wiiters* 
and are a boon to their admirers,—- are continually being put forth, though frequently in a manner that 
raiders them inaccessible to the general reader, new collections become necessary, wherein to ^iflirine audi 
scattered treasures, and thereby to extend the knowledge, and perpetuate the deserved popularity, of pco- 
ductiona which might otherwise remain comparatively unlmown and unenjoyed. 


LER, M.A., Fellow of Corpus Christi College, Oxford. 4». M, 

PSALMS and HYMNS, for PUBLIC WORSHIP ; Selected and 

Revised by the Rev. X E. RIDDLE, M. A. Gilt Edges, 2s, ; Cheap Edition, 1«. 


CHRISTMAS CAROLS (with Music); a Series of Original Sacred 

Songs, suitable for the Festival of OUR LORD'S NATIVITY ; adapted to Select 
Music, and to various National Airs; arranged for one^ two, and three Voices, 
with Accompaniments for the Piano-Forte. 4«. 


a View to PSALMODY. By JOHN TURNER, Esq. 4m. 

With an eetpecial view, first and principally, to render the kind of assistance required for the impiavenMBt of 
the musical portion of the Church Service ; and in the second place, with regard to more extended beneflto *** 
Though chiefly designed for the use of children collected in large numbers, it may, with equal 
be adopted in smaller assemblages, in the domestic drde, and by adults. 



SACRED MUSIC, by the best Masters, arranged as Solos, Duets, Trios, Ac. and 
Choruses ; and with accompaniments for the Piano-Forte or Organ. Complete in 
Two Handsome Folio Volumes, price 2/. 2a, Half-bound, or in Nos. I. to XXTV 
at \8 6d, each. ** 



F.R.S., Senior Surgeon of the Middlesex Hospital. 8«. 6^. 


DivKSsiTf Bs or CioNsn- 
TunoN ; Temperam^it ; 
Habit ; Diathesis. 

Or Diorstiok: Adap- 
tation of Diet to different 

Ckmstitutions and Ages ; ! vature ; Exercise proper 

Sodal Rations of Food. 
Of ExsRcisB i Exercise 
of Boys; Physical Educa- 
tion of Girls; SphuJCur- 

for Adults ; for the Aged. 
Of Slssp. 
Of Bathino. 

Of Clothino. 
Of Aia and Climatb. 
Hbai<th of Mind ; Self- 
control; Mental Culture. 



and DISEASE, by the Author of the preceding work. 6«. 6{f. 

Thbrb is a wisdom beyond the rules of physic ; a man's own observation, what he finds good of, and 
iHiat he finds hurt of, is the best physio to presonre health. * * * If you make physio too familiar, it will 
make no extraordinary effect when sickness oometh. I commend rather some diet for certain seasons than 
frequent use of physic, except it be grown into a custom. For these diets alter the body more, and trouble it 
less. — Bacon. 

HINTS TO GAS CONSUMERS ; comprising Practical Information 

on the following subjects :— * 

I. Thb General Properties of Coal-Gas. II. Its Cost, as compared with other modes of Illumination. III. The 
Convenienoe, Safety, and Utility of Gas-Light. IT. Management and Economical Use of Gas. Y. Gaa- 
Fitters and Gas-Fittings. YI. GasStoyes. U.fid, 

*^^>0<" i r*w" M *yv"M'w->f%f>o<* i <~ > r> » ''»r > r' « r'^"»r^>^'^»>^j > 

TION in DOMESTIC ECONOMY ; including Cookery, Household Management, 
and all other Subjects connected with the Health, Comfort, and Economy of a 
Family. With Choice Receipts and Valuable Hints. 5<. 

tft^-o^^^^t x i^o^^wxi^o^i^o^^^o^^t^^i^i^^or^i^ 


CAL ADVICE and INSTRUCTION to Young Females on their entering upon 
the Duties of Life after quitting School. By a LADY. 3^. (i</. 



Mother's Book, adapted to the use of Parents and Teachers. is. 6d. 



>iO»o»o» <»»*>» o» 0^0^mm 

USEFUL HINTS for LABOURERS, on various Subjects, la. 6rf. 

<^»#»>#» #>#»<*» #»rf»»i#«»rf>»>#»»»*><»#»^»^» 


ADVANTAGE of ALLOTTING LAND for that Purpose. As. 

. Tbb two last-mentioned Works are compiled and issued under the direotfon of the LABOURERS' FRIEND 
SOCIETY, established in London under the patronage of His late Majesty, the present Queen Dowagw, and 
a large portion of the influential Nobility and Gentry of the Country. 




By the Rev. WILLIAH WHEWELL, RD., F.RJB., &c. 6s. 




THE STUDY OF MATHEMATICS conducive to the Developement 

of the Intellectual Powers. By the Rev. TEMPLE CHEVALLIER, B.D., Pro- 
fessor of Natural Philosophy in the University of Durham. \s, 6€L • 


with a view to exhibit his Argument in a small compass, without omittiBg or 
weakening any of its oomponent parts. By a Member of the Unirersity of 
Cambridge. bs» 

*» <»» ^i^m^^>^m^m^0*m^m^m^m0>m^ <^#» o» 


Nat dral and Ri: vealkd Religion. By the Rev. GEORGE W. CRAUFURD, 
M.A.) Fellow of King's Cidlege, Cambridge. 25. 6dL 

tion, with Additions, by JAMES WILLIAM GELDART, LL.D., the Queen'b 
Professor of the Civil Law in the University of Cambridge. 8^. QcL 

A CLASSICAL LEXICON ; illustrative of the MYTHOLOGY, 

HISTORY, and GEOGRAPHY of the Greek and Roman Authws. By F. 
SCHULTE, D.CL^ of Cologne. In the Press. 


WILLIAM DONALDSON, M.A., F^ow of Trinity CoUeg«, Cambridge. 

Preparing for Press. 


CHRONOLOGY, and HISTORY, to feciUtote Uie Study of the GREEK CLAS- 
SICS. "^ ^^ 


for the Use of Schools and Students. By Uie Rev. H, P. COOKESLEY, Editor of 

The Plutus, and The Birds, y^ 

m^^^'^^m^^^^0 " m^^^>0^*^m^mmm0' >»<»»» <^ <» 


DIALOGUES of PLATO ; translated from the German, by WILLLAM DOB- 
SON, M.A. Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. 12«. ed. 


with the Greek Text^ and Critical Remarks. Tnnalated from the G«mii»i of n. ii 
MUiiLER. 0^6* 


THE FIGUEES of EUCLID; with Questions, and a Praxis of 

Geometrical Exercises. By the Bev. J. EDWARDS, M.A*, of Kiiig*B College, 
London. 3«. 

^ »»«>^>^^y^^KW^^»^^^^»^i^«i»»^*^^>^<*^A#<i^ 


A COMPANION to EUCLID ; being a Help to the Understanding 

and Remembering of the First Four Books ; with a set of Lnproved Figm-es, airal 
an Original Demonstration of the Proposition called, in Euclid, the Twelfth 
Axiom. 4«. 

^^^^^^^0^^^^^^^t^^t^^0^ ^^0^^ntH^^i^^^ 


WHEWELL, B.D., FeUow and Tutor of Trin. ColL, Cambridge. 5s. ikU 

THE DOCTRINE OF LIMITS, with its Applications; namely, 

The First Three Secticms of Newton— Conic Sections— The Differential CalcohuC 
By the Rev. WILLIAM WHEWELL, B.D., &c. 9». 


Rev. JOHN HIND, M.A* 7«. ^ 

njxjxfxj-uyrxnrui t ' i "* " -^^.i ■ j ■ ■ ■ w ^m ^^m 


INTSGBAL CALCULUS. By the Rev. T. G. HALL, M.A., Professor of Ma- 
ihematics, Ktng^s College, London. 12& 6dL ) 


of ALGEBRA to GEOMETRY. The Second Edition, conffiderably Altered. 7s. 6d. 


ProfesBor of Mathematics in the Univernty of Edinbni^ 9*. - 





Treatise on THE LAWS OF FLUIDS, and their Practical Apirifications. By 
THOMAS WEBSTER, M.A. Second Edition enlarged. 10*. 

^»'*^^»'*^*^»^^ #tf^^<W<^ *»*» *#«*<#»•>» 





with a Simple Method of Livestigating the Elliptidty of the Earth. By the Rev. 



Ik addition to the information generally contained in Hebrew Grammars, the following advantages, amongst 
others, are peculiar to this Grammar : 1. Nouns, which are usually arranged in Thirteen classes, are divided 
Into nvc;— 9. Plain rules are given respecting the changes of the Towel Points, and the position of the 
Accents ;— 3. The Conjugation of Verbs is greatly facilitated; and the difficulties universally experienced, 
with regard to the Tema of Verbs, are removed;— 4. Much light is thrown upon Hebrew Idioms. 

PHER LEO. Two Vols., ZU 3». 


PHILLIPS, M. A., Fellow and Tator of Queen's College, Cambridge. 1 0*. 




GERMAN EXERCISES, adapted to the 
Grammar. 5i. 6d. 

to the Exercises. 3f . 

GERMAN READER, a Selection from the 

most Popular Writers, with Translations and Notes, 
for the use of Beginners. 5i, 



GY. 7*. 




SELECT MODERN SCHOOL BOOKS; comprising new Works 

practically adapted to the present mode of Education, in English, French, German, 
Latin, and Greek, principally used in King's College and other Public Schools ; 

APPROVED BOOKS for YOUNG PERSONS ; comprising History, 

Tales, Voyages, and Travels ; Manners and Customs ; Natural History ; the 
Elements of the Sciences, &c. &c ; 

BOOKS for CHILDREN, carefully adapted, and attractively illustrated: 

The above may he had on application, and will also he found appended 
to the Saturday Magazine for the Months of June 
and Decemher in each year. 

♦ * ♦ The Works marked by a Star, in theVhole of the Publisher's Lists, are produced under the Direetloa 
of the General Literature and Education Committee of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. 

London: JOHN W. PARKER, Publisher, West Strand. 



\y x