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Maimona, Ankhoy, Akhja and Balkh; from thence he crossed the Gihoon, i. e. Oxus, and went to Karshee; thence to Bokhara, Samarkand, Oratepe, Kokan, Cashgar, Yarcand, I1a, Aksoo, Toorban, Seyfan and Joofoo; in the latter place, he found Ameer Assaad Ullah Khan of Delhi, who was employed by Mr. Morecroft, and was put in prison, and delivered by the influence of Mohammed Jawad. Haje Mullah Mohammed Jawad went thence to Ladak, where he met with Mr. Morecroft, and was sent by him to Cashmeer. Mr. Morecroft joined him afterwards; he remained with him one year and a half, and then accompanied him to Attok, Peshawr, Cabool, Kondoz, where Mohammed Moorad Beg resides; thence he went with Mr. Morecroft to Balkh and Bokhara, where they parted: and my informer went to Burjund, and then to Mecca, and returned to Burjund.
Haje Mullah Mohammed Jawad tells me, that Khorossaun took its name from one of the sons of Japhet. He gave me the following list of Sooffees in Toorkestaun, which I found afterwards confirmed on my arrival in Toorkestaun.
Sheikh Samaan, Sheikh Attar, Sheikh Abool Hassan Koorikane in Kokan. Sooffees in Bokhara: Khoja Shanias Khaleefa, Naamat.
This celebrated conqueror was killed at Abeward in Khorossaun, by Saleh Khan Shakake, and Mohammed Hussein Khan Curd. At the news of his death, Khorossaun shouted for joy, for he had become in his latter days one of the greatest tyrants that ever existed. I had lived the last few days in the house of Mohammed Jawad.
The same Mullah informed me, that to the south of Burjund are the ruins of a city, called Shahr-Lot, (the city of Lot) believed by the inhabitants to be the ruins of ancient Sodom.
Nov. 2.—The chief Mullah, Mullah Ismael, Assaad Ullah Khan, and Abd Resa Khan, to whom I had sent Bibles, sent their servants to me, requesting me to point out to them the passages about Christ's coming, and the appearance of Antichrist, whom they call Dajaal, which I did.
DEPARTURE FROM BURJUND.
Nov. 3.—We left Burjund, and arrived at Shooshoot, belonging to Assaad Ullah Khan, 40 English miles from Burjund.
Mirza Ameer, a man of this town, came to me, and said, "I have heard that you are going to Bokhara; at Jehaarjoo, in the kingdom of Bokhara, my son Aboo-Taleb lives in slavery; if you can do any thing for procuring his liberty, I will be always thankful to you: he is a young man, 25 years of age; the name of his mother is Khatoon Fanne." I promised to look out for him, and told him that I would forward any letters for him. The poor young man had been taken by the Turkomauns.
Nov. 4.—We arrived at Mohammed Abad, 28 English miles from Shooshot.
Nov. 5.—We arrived at Nogaw, 28 English miles from Mohammed Abad. We saw at a distance Turkomauns on horseback, overladen with slaves, which prevented them from coming near us.
Nov. 6 We arrived at Monabatsh, 24 miles from the former
place. In the morning we continued our journey, and met on the road with poor peasants in the fields, who were about to retire farther into the mountains, for fear of being taken by the Turkomauns. On perceiving my guard, myself and servant, they believed us to be Turkomauns, and suddenly we heard the cries of the poor women and children; but we quieted them. Oh! that the Lord Jesus may soon renew the face of the earth, that violence and destruction may no longer be known in the land!
Nov. 7.—We arrived at Senoo, 28 miles from the former place.
Nov. 8.—We arrived at Morandis, 40 miles from Senoo. The soldier who was sent with me by Assaad Ullah Khan, wanted me to sleep there one night in a mosque; but I protested against such a course, being assured, that if it became known in the town, that a Christian had taken up his abode in a mosque, they would put me to death; we slept therefore in a house.
Nov. 9.—We went over the same ground which the Turkomauns had passed the day before, with 1500 slaves, captured in the territory of the Khan of Tursheesh; we observed dead horses in the road, and the footsteps of the Turkomauns. After a ride of 40 miles, we arrived at Tursheesh, a strong fortress and considerable town; the place of residence of Mohammed Takee Khan, who lives in a large burg, like what one sees belonging to noblemen in Hungary; surrounded by soldiers, some of them dressed like Russians. I heard here the beating of the drum quite in the Russian style, and found several Russian soldiers. In this burg, I saw a large stable with beautiful horses, which the Khan had taken in battle from the Turkomauns; or as a ransom for Turkomauns, whom he had made prisoners; for as soon as one Turkomaun becomes a captive, the rest either ransom him for money, or exchange him for horses.
Mohammed Takee Khan gave me and my servant a lodging in his house. My servant began to behave in a horrid way, though I had increased his salary; he had secretly robbed me of my money, and was impertinent in the extreme, as is usual with such characters.
I called the next day on the Minister of the Khan, Haje Aga, in whose house many Mullahs and chief men of the Khan were assembled. They offered a galyoon (i. e. Persian pipe) to my servant, but not to me. They had a long discussion on the subject of clean and unclean. Haje Aga was of opinion, that an Armenian was cleaner than a Jew and a Guebre; but he was not yet quite sure, whether a Frank (European) was not cleaner than the Armenians. Others were of different opinion, and thought that Guebres, Armenians, and Europeans, were alike Najas, i. e. unclean, according to a Mullah of Sabzewar, Fasl Ullah by name. Another observed, that Haje Sayd Baker, the chief Mullah at Ispahan, is of opinion, that one may make use of a galyoon, which was made use of by a Christian. One present exclaimed, God forbid! Another, more liberal, thought that one might make use of a galyoon of an European, after its having been washed. I then called on Mohammed Takee Khan, an old, venerable, and mild looking man; his whole room was crowded; they were just discussing the arrival of Abbas Mirza in Khorossaun. Mohammed Takee Khan, I observed, was resolved not to deliver his fortress into the hands of the Prince Royal. There was among them, Mohammed Hussein Khan, the brother of Abd Resa Khan, who had likewise rebelled against Abbas Mirza, with his brother Abd Resa Khan at Yazd; he was there as a fugitive in the land. Mohammed Takee Khan told me, that it was his advice that I should go on with Mohammed Hussein Khan towards Meshed, or wait until a caravan was proceeding there. I was resolved to go on alone. There are no Jews at Tursheesh. The town may contain 12000 inhabitants.
DEPARTURE FROM TURSHEESH.
Nov. 10.—We arrived at Ali Abad, 20 miles from Tursheesh.
Nov. 11.—We continued our journey, and met on the road with the above mentioned Mohammed Hussein Khan from Yazd, who made me such a horrid offer," that I let him proceed alone. We arrived at Rooshneabad, 28 miles from the former place.
The Mussulman in whose house I slept here, was the kindest man I met with in Khorossaun.
Nov. 12 We continued our journey towards Neshapoor, and
arrived near Sangerd. The inhabitants, seeing us at a distance, and believing us to be a party of Turkomauns (for we were in the whole seven persons, consisting of myself, servant, and five muleteers from Tabas) fired down upon us; but we soon undeceived them: the whole village in arms, asked us with a lamentable and half furious countenance, "When will our country no longer be disturbed by those Turkomauns, and by Mohammed Ishak Khan Kerahe of Torbad Hydarea, whose men are not two miles distant from the town, making Tshapow? (plunder.) When will our misery end?"
I observed, that Abbas Mirza will now establish order in the country. They replied, "Pedr sukhte, God burn the father of Abbas Mirza. He will never establish order in this country; if he had brought with him Arghuwan Mirza, f then he might have effected something!"
* Romans i. 27.
t Arghuwan Mirza, the son of Hassan Ali Mirza, formerly Prince Governor of Meshed, was the terror of the Turkomauns.
We stopt at Sangerd for a few moments, and having learnt that the people of the famous Mohammed Ishak Khan Kerahe of Torbad Hydarea were wandering about in the neighbourhood, for the purpose of making slaves, we joined a caravan of ass-drivers and a horseman from Nishapoor. Those ass drivers had laden their asses with dates and lemons for Abbas Mirza, sent as a present by Ali Nakee Khan of Tabas. We had scarcely rode on for five miles, when we saw at a distance a band of horsemen, and heard a firing; they came towards us with their arms spread open. As I was already a good deal advanced before the caravan, I might easily have made my escape; but I thought it not right to leave my servant in the hands of the robbers, and therefore returned. One of the banditti took hold of my horse, whilst the rest bound the others. The one who came up to me was panting in an awful manner, and the match of his gun was smoking. Without looking into my face, he took hold of the bridle of my horse, and said, "Pool! Pool!" money! money! I gave him all the money I had in my pocket; he ordered me not to tell his comrades that he had taken it, and continually panting, he asked, "Have you no more money." I replied, "Yes, I have more in my trunk."
Soon after, I was surrounded by the rest; they took me down from the horse, and exclaimed, "Have you no money?" I replied, "I have given it to your comrade." They began to beat their fellow robber for having tried to keep the whole for himself. I was stripped in a moment of every thing, even of the shirt from my back: nothing, nothing was left to me; it was then extremely cold. They put a rag filled with vermin over me, and brought me out of the highway, where I met with the rest, weeping and crying, and bound to the tails of the robbers' horses. It was an awful sight, to see robbers (twenty-four in number) beating and cursing each other, and beating us poor Banda, (i. e. those that are bound;) disputing among themselves whose property every one of us should be. We were driven along by them in continual gallop, on account of the approaching Turkomauns: for if the Turkomauns had found us out, or come near us, our robbers would have been made slaves by them, they being Sheahs themselves. As I thought it would be better that the Turkomauns should take me, as they would have brought me immediately to Khiva, instead of being first taken to Torbad, and then sold to the Turkomauns of Khiva, I made a noise; but the people of Mohammed Khan Kerahe threatened to put me to death, which compelled me to be silent.
During the night, three of the prisoners had the good fortune to make their escape. The Chief, Hassan Khan by name, a horrid looking fellow, with a blue diseased tongue, which prevented him from being well understood, screamed out, "Look out for them, and if you find them, kill them instantly." However, they did not succeed in finding them. About 2 o'clock in the morning, we stopt in a forest; they had pity on me, and gave me a cup of tea, i
made of my own, which they had taken. They broke open the cases, belonging to Abbas Mirza, filled with dates, and gave me a share of them. They began after this to put a price on us: my servant was valued at ten, and myself at five Tomauns. The moment they took the money from my servant, I found out that the fellow had robbed me of 16 Tomauns, which he now lost. Some tried again to make their escape, but were horridly beaten by a young robber 14 years of age. After this we were put in irons. Twelve of the robbers separated for the purpose of making another plundering expedition. It was an awful night, cold and freezing, and we were without any thing to cover us. The robbers consulted together about me, whether it was adviseable or not, to kill me, as I was known by Abbas Mirza: for they were afraid, if Abbas Mirza should hear of me, that he would claim me.
Yes, it was an awful night; and what consolation could I have expected from above, from my Saviour, if I had not put my trust and my faith in Him, and in his promise! At such an hour, one experiences the precious fruits of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed is he, who at such an hour knows that Christ is with him, and that neither bonds, nor cold, nor hunger, nor thirst, can separate him from the love of Christ, and that to him he can carry all his wants.
I prayed to that Saviour, and then spoke to the robbers, beseeching them not to kill me, and promising, that on my arrival at Torbad, (to which place they intended to bring me) I would ransom myself with the assistance of the Jews; which I could do, if they would permit me to write something in the Hebrew Bibles and Testaments that I had with me. They gave me those books, and then I wrote in Hebrew shortly, my name, condition, and present situation. The hope of a good ransom prevented them from killing me the first night.
Nov. 15.—We arrived at a village belonging to Ameer Khan of of the Kerahe; he treated me kindly, and desired Hassan Khan to give him one of my Persian Testaments, which he did. An Englishman was never seen in these parts. In the evening we arrived at Arkhshee, where I was sitting near a ruined house, together with my servant. Ali Khan, one of the robbers, came near me, and put the chains around my feet, and said, "Now you sit comfortably." But one of the robbers, having pity on me, loosed them again.
Nov. 16.—They put me upon a wild horse, and one of the robbers, 14 years of age, beat my horse, in order that it might throw me off; but fortunately I kept my seat.
Nov. 17.—We arrived near Torbad: it was an impressive sight to witness the families of the robbers, who came out to meet their husbands, fathers or brothers, to congratulate them on their success. Turkomauns from Sarakhs, Khiva and Mowr, who were waiting there to purchase slaves from the Kerahe, came out of the town in order to look at us.
The Hazarah, descendants of the Moguls, another slave-making