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but whose merchants generally proceed to Bombay, where there is no want of allurement to purchase from deficiency in the abundance, variety, and display, of goods, there are an infinity of articles to be found which are in vain sought for at Kábul. Of the commodities of India and manufactures of Britain, which would find sale in Afghanistan and Turkistan, the former are well known, and would remain as at present, the demand being only increased, as spices, indigo, muslins, fine sugar, drugs, &c., were diminished in price by the additional facilities which would be given to commerce, but of the latter a great variety of new articles might be introduced, chintzes, fine calicoes, muslins, shawls, &c., of British manufacture, have now become fashionable; and investments of broad cloth, velvet, paper, cutlery, china-ware, gold and silver lace, gold thread, buttons, needles, sewing silks and cotton thread, iron bars, copper, tin, brass and quicksilver, iron and steel wire, looking-glasses, with a multitude of various little articles conducive to comfort and convenience would be readily disposed of. It is singular that not a sheet of English manufactured writing paper can be found in the bazaar of Kábul, while Russian foolscap, of coarse inferior quality, abounds, and is generally employed in the public departments."

A list of articles is then appended of some of the manufactured articles which form the bulk of the exports from Russia to Bokhara, and of such as find their way to Caubul. Among which hard and soft goods, useful and ornamental, &c., are found. Mr. Masson proceeds,

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"In glancing over this imperfect list, it will be obvious that many of the articles of Russian manufacture most largely imported to Kábul viâ Bokhara, ought to be superseded by similar ones from Bombay. From Orenburg, the point whence traffic between Russia and Bokhara is principally conducted, there are sixty-two camel or kafla marches, and from Bokhara to Kábul thirty-five camel or kafla marches, being a total of ninety-seven camel or kafla marches, independent of halts. In the distance travelled duties are levied at Khiva, Bokhara, Balkh, Muzzar, Khulam, Hybuk, Qunduz, Kahmerd, Sohghan, Bámian, and Kábul. That the supplies from Bombay to Kábul have been hitherto inadequate for the wants of the markets, is in a great measure owing to the sluggishness of the Afghan merchants; that they will cease to be so, may be hoped from the opening of the navigation of the Indus, and the conversion of Mithankot into a mart, which will bid fair to become a second Bombay for the merchants of these countries.

"Broad cloth, largely imported from Bokhara, is a regular article of consumption at Kábul, being used for the chupkins, kabahs, sinabunds, &c., of the opulent, as coverings to the holster pipes of the military, and as jackets for the disciplined troops; dark colours are generally preferred, but blue, scarlet, and drab, are also in vogue, and fine and coarse qualities are alike saleable.


In fine linens and calicoes, the Russian fabrics are unable to contend with British manufactures at Kábul, either in quality or price, and some of the latter even find their way to Bokhara. Russian chintzes are esteemed more durable than British, as being of coarser texture, but with

less elegant or fast colours, and, although occasionally brought to Kabul. afford no profit to induce further speculations.

"Silk goods, which are brought to Kábul from Bokhara, of Russian manufacture, and in large quantities, would appear to have every chance of being superseded by better and cheaper importations from Mithankot or even Bombay, where certainly the fabrics of Bengal and China, if not England, must be abundant. Amongst a variety of modes in which silk goods are consumed at Kábul, permanent ones are in the under garments of both male and female inhabitants who can afford it. The colours most prized are red, blue, and yellow. Silk handkerchiefs of various colours, and even black ones, would probably meet a ready sale, as would some articles of silk hosiery, as socks, and even stockings. Silk gloves, lace, ribbands, &c., might not be expected to sell, there being no use or idea of them."

He goes into particulars respecting many sorts of goods which, if of British manufacture, could not fail to obtain a preference, or create a new demand-such as gold and silver lace, steel and copper wire, china-ware, glass-ware, &c. Our last extract from Mr. Masson's communication contains several valuable suggestions.

"The merchants of Kábul have many of them commercial transactions with Russia itself, and their agents or gomashtahs are resident at Orenberg and Astrakan, while their intercourse with India seems to exist rather from necessity than choice. The reason for the traffic of Kábul inclining towards Russia for articles of European fabric, may perhaps be discovered in the remoteness from it of any great mart for British manufactures. Bombay, until lately the nearest, being to be reached by sea, if viâ Karachi, Bunder, or through countries unknown even by name here, if by a land route from Hyderabad. Sea voyages are generally much dreaded, and a journey to Bombay is seldom performed by an inhabitant of Kábul, unless as a consequence of one of the last and most desperate acts of his life, the pilgrimage to Mecca. It may also in part be ascribed to the comparative facility and safety of the communications between Kábul and Bokhara, which excepting one or two points are tolerably secure, while the rulers of the intermediate regions are content to levy moderate Badj or duty upon merchandize, the Governments of Bokhara being in this respect singularly lenient and liberal. The routes between Kábul and India are with the exception of the dreary and desolate one of the Gomul, impracticable to any Kafla of whatever strength, and this can only be travelled by the Lohanis, who are soldiers as well as merchants. But these being also a pastoral community, for the convenience of their flocks make but one visit to India during the year, and the route is closed except at the periods of their passage and return. The Lohani, born and nurtured in the wilderness, and inured from infancy to hardship and danger, will encounter from custom the difficulties of the Gomul route, but the merchant of Kábul skrinks from them, and the route is likely ever to be monopolized by the Lohanis, and never to become a general one for the merchants of Kábul. The intercourse between Kábul and India would be exceedingly promoted by opening the anciently existing high road from Kábul to Multan, &c., viâ Bungush and Bannu. This route is very considerably shorter, leads chiefly through a

level, fertile and populous country, is practicable at all seasons of the year, and no doubt could be rendered safe were the governments on the Indus and of Kábul to co-operate.

"The traders of Russia appear very accurately to study the wants and convenience of the people with whom they traffic, and to adapt their exports accordingly. The last year (1834) a species of Russian chintz was brought as an experiment from Bokhara to Kábul. It was of an extraordinary breadth, and of a novel pattern, and was sold for three rupees the yard; in like manner was brought Nankah, or linen stamped with chintz patterns, and the readiness with which these articles were disposed of will probably induce larger exports. The last article is one calculated to supplant the present large importations of British chintzes or stamped calicoes. The advantage of superior machinery enable the skilful and enterprising artisans of Great Britain to effect a memorable revolution in the commerce of Asia, and their white cottons and printed calicos have nearly driven from its markets the humbler manufactures of India. Slight cotton fabrics are, of course, eminently calculated for so sultry a climate as that of India, but less so perhaps for one so variable in temperature as that of Afghanistan. Its inhabitants, while from necessity they clothe themselves in calicoes, will naturally prefer the better fabrics of Britain; but if they were offered linens of equally fine web and beauty of printed patterns, there can be no doubt which would be selected. It is not improbable, but that sooner or later, manufactures of flax and hemp will in some measure supersede those of cotton for general use in Afghanistan.


I shall close these remarks which principally turn on the trade between Russia and Kábul, viâ Bokhara, by observing that the Russian merchants so nicely study the wants and even disposition of the people with whom they traffic, that multitudes of the inhabitants of Kábul are to be seen with Chupans of Nankah on their backs, actually got up and sewn at Orenberg -while all the shops in the city may be searched in vain for a single button of British or indeed any other manufacture, when one, two, three, or more are required for the dress of every individual, as substitutes for which they are compelled to use thread simply twisted into a spherical shape."

Although the Indus has hitherto been turned to much less account than it might have been, it has recently, as we learn from the prefatory narrative before us, been made a channel of a considerable and rapidly increasing commerce in wool with the Belochee and the Afghan tribes, and which has extended even as far as the eastern portion of the Persian province of Korassan. This traffic may be presumed to be but in its infancy, for the flocks possessed by the Nomad and other tribes of Asia are exceedingly numerous, the expense of transit by means of camels small, and the price of wool trifling. The demand for British goods is represented to be limited to the north of the Indus only by the means of payment. The Company's political agent at Loodianah, who has lately ascertained the prices of the principal articles in which the British would be especially concerned in the markets of Caubul and Bokhara, says,

"With the exception of some few articles, I found that we enjoyed a

decided advantage in the sale of every description of piece goods at Bokhara over the Russians; and consequently at Caubul.

"If we could afford to undersell them under all the expenses and delays of an overland route, which will be at least half abridged by the opening of the Indus, the advantageous prospects that are held out to our merchants, who may engage in the navigation of that river, seem to me to be far from chimerical; unless, indeed, the recent establishment of a Russian port at Mangaslak should have placed the commercial relations of Russia with Turkistan on an improved footing, which I have no reason at present to suppose.'


According to the statements of the same gentleman we are led to understand, that the prices current of British goods in the places now mentioned, are as respects certain articles, 90, and as respects others 40 per cent. more than in the market of Calcutta. He also communicates the discovery of a bed of coal on the banks of one of the tributaries of the Indus. When all these things are considered, it is more than probable that this river will become very soon the channel of an enormous amount of British trade; nor is it a rash anticipation when it is added that the stream is likely at no distant date to form the advanced post, if not the boundary, of British power in India. It could, at any rate, require but a very few thousand pounds to try in the way of experiment a single steam-vessel, either as suggested in the Pamphlet, as a tug or a cargo boat. Indeed a prospectus for a company to undertake the steam navigation of the Indus was published in the spring of last year, which however, as before hinted, was suspended. Before closing our paper with an extract from that Prospectus, it is not venturing a bold prediction, when we express a confidence that the gradual reviving spirit of commercial confidence and speculation will be strongly re-attracted by the appearance of the present Pamphlet to the East -a Pamphlet which, independent of the light it throws upon one of the grandest channels for the enterprise of Britain and her colonies, contains a considerable amount of geographical and statistical information that is new or difficult to be elsewhere obtained. The map that accompanies the Pamphlet is worth the price set upon the whole publication.

Compare now the prices at which goods have been conveyed by land, to what may be expected of the communication by the Indus to similar destinations.

"The expense of conveying goods by land carriage from Bombay to Umritsir, viâ Bhownuggur, varies according to the description of the article; from the best information on the subject, it averages not less than 34 per cent. on their value.

"Owing to the ruinous expense attending the conveyance of heavy and bulky articles by the land route, the base metals, which form one of the most important articles of foreign import, to the Punjab, and countries beyond the Indus, are never sent by it; all the metals, therefore, required

for the consumption of the countries beyond the Sutledge and Indus, are sent by the circuitous route of Calcutta and the Ganges, and Jumna; the rate of freight, at present, by the native boats, on the Ganges, from Calcutta to Allahabad, which is about the same distance that Loodeanna and Attock are from the mouths of the Indus, or about 800 miles, is 54 rupees, or £5: 8s. per ton, and that charged by the Bengal Government from Calcutta to Allahabad, a distance of 800 miles, by the iron steamers, one rupee and a half, or 3s. per foot on measurement goods, or £6 per ton of 40 feet, and one per cent. on treasure. The charge for passengers is, for the first class cabin, 6 annas, or 9d. per mile. Second class, 5 annas, 74d. per mile. Third class, 4 annas, or 6d. per mile, with one servant and 6 cwt. of baggage, exclusive of provisions.'"

ART.-XI. Views of the Architecture of the Heavens, in a Series of Letters to a Lady. By J. P. NICHOL, LL. D. F. R. S. &c., Professor of Practical Astronomy in the University of Glasgow. EDINBURGH: W. Tait. 1837.

It is not often in the course of a reviewer's lifetime, that he is called on to announce the advent of an author who all at once, and though unheard of before, takes the admiration of the world captive, and establishes himself among the potentate geniuses of an empire. Yet sometimes it has been our lot to witness the appearance of an artist, a man of science, or of literature, who by one public effort has burst upon us with a force and a promise which admitted not of a doubtful construction. Yet that effort may have been by one who did not seem conscious of having taken a high aim, or performed a great achievement. It may have been, indeed, that the proofs of unquestioned genius were elicited upon a comparatively slight occasion, thereby, however, becoming the more striking by means of contrast, and showing how much instruction and delight may be communicated by one man, where others would have been dull or commonplace. These remarks have been forcibly suggested by a perusal of the present work, which, so far as we know, is the first publication by its author; but one, which we defy any man to peruse without being convinced that if its authors's life be spared, will be succeeded by a brilliant display of the triumphs of his genius. And yet Dr. Nichol's "Architecture of the Heavens," only professes to be a compilation of that which has been discovered and described by other men. To be sure, these discoveries and descriptions belong to the most stupendous and august subject which physical science comprises. But marvellous and sublime as these are, our author has dealt with them in such a masterly though popular style as to impart to them the beauty and freshness of originality, together with an unsurpassed eloquence that is both arousing and subduing.

Dr. Nichol modestly lays claim merely to having given an expla

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