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There was a smart Shock of an earthquake felt in Nipal on the 11th instant, at 9h. 40m. 1’- M. The same was experienced at Monghlr at 10h. 10111. P. M. It was riot observed in Calcutta. .-. .
The Standard Barometer-, announced at the foot of the last Journal as just arrived per Neptune, was found, 0" Opening the 0888. to be broken ! The cistern “'3 acked, and the mercury had escaped. '3 I
I .—BIemoir on the U'sbek State of K okan, properly called Khokend, (the Ancient Ferghana,) in Central Asia. By W. H. WATHEN, Esq. Persian Secretary to the Bombay Government, &-c.
[Read at the Meeting of the 6th August]
DURING the last few years, circumstances have taken place which have caused the Muhammedan inhabitants of Central Asia, and even of Chinese Tartary, to prefer, in performing their pilgrimage to Mecca, the circuitous route of Bokhzira or Samarkand, Kundliz, Taush Kurgfnin, Balkh, Kabul, Kandahar, and Kelauti-Nasir, and Bela, to Somniany, whence they pass in boats to Bombay, and from the latter port to Judda, to either the road through Russia round the Caspian as Astrakhan, or the more direct one through Persia.
The causes which have led to this change of their accustomed route, which was through Russia, are said to be-—first, some misunderstanding betwixt the Cossac tribes, under the influence of Russia, and those of the Kokan prince, in consequence of which, the Russian government is said to have stopped the communication through its territory. With
against the Tartars, who are of the opposite sect of the Sunis, has long deprived the pilgrims from Tartary of all access to its territory, so that there remains no other way of performing the pilgrimage except through the Afghan provinces. , These circumstances have led to the resort of pilgrims to Bombay, from countries situate in the very heart of Asia. I calculate that within the last two years, at least three hundred zealots of this description have arrived at Bombay from the cities of Bokhéua, Samarkand.
Kokan, and Yzirkend. Among those who arrived during the present year, 1834, was a noble of high rank of Kokan ; his name was KHOJA Bnninon KHXN, who held the title of Knu’sn Bn'or, and was prime minister to the prince of that country ; his son, said to be foster-brother to the same prince, and a suite of about twenty followers, accompanied him.
On my hearing of the arrival of these illustrious strangers, I took the first opportunity of forming an acquaintance with them, with the view of obtaining information respecting the state of things in a country so little known* to Europeans, and I collected the following particulars.
In the first place, I shall endeavour to describe the geographical situation of this country, as well as the information received will enable me. i
The principality of Kokan appears to be situated between the parallels of from thirty-nine degrees to fifty-five degrees of north latitude, and to extend from the sixty-fifth to the seventy-fifth degree of east longitude.
On the east, it is bounded by the country of Kfashgar, in Chinese Tartary, the river Oxus or Amu is its limit; to the south-east, Badakhshan, Kaviategin, and Derwaz; west, it is bounded by the Bokhzira territory ; and north and north-west, by Russian Tartary, and the Steppes occupied by the roving Cossacs, under the influence of Russia.
This country, with the exception of the Steppes adjoining the Russian frontiers, and the sandy deserts lying betwixt it and the Bokhara territory, is said to be very populous and fertile, and being watered by many streams and rivers, which have their source in the Ulugh Tagh, and other mountains, and which mostly flow into the Sir or Sihiin, the ancient J axartes, all the fruits of temperate climates are produced in great abundance, especially apples. The melons are very superior. Barley and wheat are also raised, the former in great quan-' tity.
Afew words will suffice to give the history of this country :—Tradition states it to have been under the rule of AFRXSIXB, king of Turim, whose wars with the Persians are commemorated in the Shah-nama of Fmnousr. The present city of Turkistém is said to have been his capital. It was overrunby the Arabs in the third century of the Hijra. Subsequently the Sulténs of the Saméni dynasty annexed it to their empire. It then fell, in the thirteenth century, with the rest of Asia, to the conquering armies of C1-nmeiz Kain-It; afterwards, on the decline and division of the Mongol Empire, under his successors, it was conquered by the famous Amin T1MU'1t, who bequeathed it to one of his sons: from whom it descended to the famous BXBER, who reigned at the city called at present Andejiin, but which was formerly called Almélij, or " The Place of Apples,” fromthenumber of orchards of apple trees, by which it was surrounded. Shortly after the accession of BA'BEn, about 1520*, the U'sbek Tartars were forced by the rising power of the Russians to abandon the southern parts of Siberia, &c.,
* It has not been visited by Europeans, I believe, since the 14th century. 1- On the death of Crmrwiz, it became the portion of his eldest son J A’ GHATA’l, or Caxeaumm. L
which had formed part of the Tartar kingdom of Kiptchak; on their .
way southward, under the command of their leader SHUBA’Ni Kain, they overran all the states of Central Asia, Bokhtira, Samarkand, &c., and after a brave resistance, BA’BER, among the rest of the princes of that country, was obliged to abandon his patrimonial kingdom, and fly to Kabul, where he fixed his government, and whence having concentrated his forces, he invaded India, took Delhi in 1526, and there established the present Moghul dynasty; ever since the flight of BXBER, the country of Kokan has been governed by U’sbek princes, who trace their descent from Cnnnoiz KHKN, and who transferred the capital
The state of Kokan consists of eight extensive governments, each deriving its name from its chief town ; these are—to the south-west of the city of Kokan the fortified town of Urutippa, and its dependent district ; to the west, the ancient city and dependency of Kojend on the Sihun or Jaxartes; to the south-east, the districts of Uch and Marghilan ; to the north-east, Nemengfln and Andejan : to north and north-west, the cities of Tzishkend and Turkistén, with their districts: these with Kokan form together eight distinct governments.
The districts of Téshkend was till lately under a separate chief, who was a Syed called YoNis KHOJEH1-, but has been taken from his sons by the present KHXN of Kokan.
The governors of all these provinces are appointed and removed by the KHXN, or king, at pleasure ; they are all military commanders, and generally hold the rank of Ming-Béshis, or commander of one thousand horse. The king is not, as in Persia, dependent for support on the warlike tribes, butkeeps up a standing army of cavalry, which is supported by an allowance of grain and forage from the districts in which they
* They are called U’ sbek from a descendant of Cnnwciz Kna'rr, who was the head of the golden horde, and so beloved, that they adopted his name. In like manner the Noghai Tartars have obtained their peculiar appellation; they belonged to the Great Horde.
1- Khojeh is a title given by the Tartars to Syeds, as Sherif in Turkey, and Meer and Shah in India.
are stationed, besides a small amount of pay, The use of infantry is unknown. The KHKN is said in cases of emergency to be able to bring 50,000 horse into the field.
Most of the inhabitants of this kingdom, with the exception of the Cossac hordes, on the borders of Russia and the Karghiz, towards Kashgar, are U'sbeks, who cultivate the ground themselves. In some parts there are T:ijiks*, or people of Persian extraction, who speak that language, and are as serfs to the U’sbek lords, whose estates
Kokan, the capital, is said to be a very large and populous city, it is not surrounded by a wall; its population is reported to exceed that of Bokhéra, and it is said to contain one hundred colleges and five hundred mosquest ; the number of its inhabitants is rated at 100,000 ; it has many beautiful orchards, and is situated upon two small rivers, called the Aksaii and the Karasai, which fall into the Sihun or Jaxartes, near Kojend. It contains a large colony of Jews ; about twenty Hindus, and many Cashmerians; no Armenians; but there are some Noghai Tartars from Russia, especially one, who is a watch-maker.
The Ulema, or literati, are well read in the Persian classics, and the Persian language is spoken with nearly the same accent as by the
Afghéns ; the dialect differs much from that now used in Persia, and '
more resembles that of the 16th century. Many Turki compositions are also read and admired; the Turki spoken in this 'country, is what is called the Jéghatfit, and differs much from the Turki of Constanti
nople, which however derives its origin from it. ' The climate seems to verge on extremes :—in the winter, great cold prevails, and much snow falls; in the summer again the heat is
oppressive. The natives are as bigotted Muhammedans as those of Bokhilra. A
mohtesib goes round and bastinadoes any one caught smoking tobacco.’
* The word Trijik was first used to distinguish those who had been subject to the Arab rule in contradistinction to the invading Turks.
1- I suspect my informant of some exaggeration here.
I The J aghatéi Turki is the language of Central Asia, from the river Ural to the Oxus,and from the Caspian to Yarkend, (in many of the cities however Persian is generally spoken and understood ;) this refined dialect of the ancient Turki was, called Jaghatai, from having been much polished and refined during the reign of J noun’ TA’! KHA'N, the son of Cnnnoiz. From this language is derived the language of the Turki of Constantinople, of the Tnrkmans, and of the Elluat of Turkish origin in Persia, though these dialects difier considerably now from the mother tongue, and in the Usmalfi Turki, so much Arabic and Persian has been introdueed-as to render this language very difficult to be understood by the natives