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shewing that the claims of this fine peak to notice are by no means limited to its picturesque appearance,’*‘ and that both its geology and natural history deserve far more attention than I was able to devote to them in the two days to which my stay was necessarily limited.
Towards the end of last October, I was on my return from Mandele, the present capital of Ava, in which town and its neighbourhood I had been staying for about six weeks. Before leaving the city I had been furnished with an order of the king, addressed to the Myo-woon or Governor of Pagan, to assist me in every way. Without such an order, it would, in all probability, be very diflicult for any one to visit the mountain,'1' and it would certainly have been impossible for me, within the few days of my leave which remained unexpired. As it was, I had not the slightest delay, but, reaching Pagan on the afternoon of the 25th October, I was able to start for Puppa the next morning, the Myo-woon sending with me a Tsare or writer, and providing me with ‘a. pony, coolies and guides.
The distance of Puppa in a direct line from Pagan can be but little over twenty-five miles, but by the road, which winds considerably, this is increased to thirty or thirty-five, about two days’ march. The accompanying map is a mere sketch, but it will serve to shew the relative positions of the various places mentioned below.
October 26:‘-h.-—I left Pagan by a road which passed close to the Dhamayangyee temple, and thence led, by no means in a direct line, towards the N. W. end of the Ta-ywan (or Ta-rwan) hills.I Near the town, the country is mostly cultivated at this season, the principal crops being maize janera, and a kind of millet called Z22 by the Burmese. The soil is very sandy, but few pebbles occurring. The Whole of the slightly undulating tract, over which I passed from Pagan to the foot of Puppa, is composed of the series of sands and gravels, with occasional conglomerate beds, which occupies so large a portion of the valley of the Irawaddi between Ava and Prome, and sections of which abound on the river banks between Pagan and Meulhai, especially in the neighbourhood of Yénankhyoung. Many details concerning them will be found in Dr. Oldham’s notes on the geological features of the banks of the Irawaddi, published as an appendix to C01. Yule’s “Narrative.” In these beds, bones of Mastodon, Elephant, Rhinoceros, Bos and other ruminants, Tortoise, Crocodile, &c., occur in several places, as at Yénankhyoung, Pakh:inngé, in the Yau country west of Pagan, &c., and they contain the silicified fossil wood, the abundance of which in this portion of Burma is so remarkable. About Pagfin, and to the E. and N. E. of the town, the country occupied by these rocks is less intersected by ravines than is the case further south, and from the undulating plain which slopes gradually and gently upwards from the river, the outcrops of the harder nummulitic beds, which underlie the more recent sands, project, here and there, in the form of straight steep ridges of sandstone of no great height. One of the most prominent of these is the Taywan doung, which stretches for eight or ten miles in a nearly straight line from N. 20 W. to S. 20 E., the dip of the beds
"‘ Major (now Colonel) Yule in the excellent “Narrative of the Mission to Ava,” thus writes (p. 25, London edition). “ The lofty isolated hill of Paopa was distinctly visible far to the Eastward, showing here a double himmock top. It must be 3000 feet high, at least allowing for the probable distance." And again p. 27. “ The remarkable Paope doung is a more and more conspicuous object as we advance. The Burmese naturally look with some superstitious dread on this isolated mountain which they say it is impossible to ascend, and regard as the dwelling of myriads of Nets and Bilus. See also Dr. Oldham’s note in the appendix to the same work, p. 338.” Others, besides Col. Yule, have been told by the Burmese that the mountain is inaccessible.
1' In this and in other instances in which I was allowed to penetrate into the country above Ava, I was indebted, for this advantage, to Colonel Phayre, the Commissioner of Pegu, who very kindly furnished me with a letter to the chief minister at Mnndelo.
I Tharawadi hills of Col. Yule. Narrative, p. 27.
I being at an angle of about 410° to W. 20 S.
I climbed to the Pagoda at the'N. W. end of the range for the purpose of obtaining a few bearings, and from this point I had the first good view of Puppa. From some delay in starting, and a halt about midday for breakfast, together with a few eccentricities on the part of my guide, it was by this time afternoon, and the sun had sunk considerably, so that it shone from behind me upon the mountain. Dr. Oldham, who also saw Puppé. from this spot, suggested that it might be formed of metamorphic rocks, like the mountains E. of Ava, and its appearance produced precisely the same impression upon me, although I could see distinctly, even at this distance, that the highest part of the mountain did not consist of a straight ridge, but of a semicircular one, surrounding a central hollow, which suggested a volcanic origin. But such an appearance is not rare in high peaks of gneiss or schistose rocks. There is one remarkable instance in Beerbhoom, about thirty miles S. of Deogurh, in a hill called Patardha.
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From Taywan doung, I could also see distinctly that all the upper portion of the peak was free from jungle and covered with grass, a circumstance which suggested sufficient elevation to produce an alteration of the climate at the top.
The road led along the E. side of the Tay\van hills, for several miles, to a place called Kama, where I found some wooden charpoys arranged under a shed for our accommodation. The village, like all others which I saw on the road, was a very poor one of about twenty houses, which are built difi'erently from any that I have before met with in Burma, there being no flooring of bamhoos or planks raised above the ground. The earth here, as in India, forms the floor, the skeleton of the house is built as usual of wood and the sides and roof closed in with palmyra leaves. Toungwen and Kwébyo were rather larger than Kama. All these villages obtain their water from tanks, which are of small size, and must frequently dry up in the hot Weather. Wells, in this sandy region, would probably require to be dug to a depth far exceeding Burmese capabilities, and the broad torrent beds, which abound, never contain water except immediately after very heavy rain.
October 27th.—The road from Kama led for some distance nearly due East to a village called Kwé-byo. The country between this and the Taywan hills is only cultivated in patches, the greater portion being covered with a thin jungle,* composed almost entirely of the cutch tree, (acacia catechu,) the jujube plum, (zizyphus,) and the zhi phyu or amra, (Pkyllantkus, I bclieve,) the acid fruits of which are as much relished by the Burmese as by the natives of India. The Euphorbia, which abounds near the river’s bank, is comparatively scarce a short distance inland.
After passing Kwé-hyo, the jungle became thicker and more varied, resembling the thinner jungles of Bengal and Orissa, the soil also became more gravelly and ferruginous. VVild animals are said to be very scarce, the only kinds which are found being the barking deer and the tha-meng (Pzmolia) and leopards. Hares (Lcpus 1’e_guensz's) abound however. 1 here first saw some of the furnaces in which the
1‘ There is a great resemblance between this country and some parts of Southern India. The scenery between Pagan and Kwé-l:yo recalled to me that between Trichinopoly and the Nilgiris, especially from Caroor to the base of the hills. The resemblance is increased by the thorn fences round all the fields and patches of cultivation.