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'Military Report on South-West Persia, Including the Provinces of Khuzistan (Arabistan), Luristan, and Part of Fars' [‎354] (401/466)

The record is made up of 1 volume (390 pages). It was created in 1885. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: Printed Collections.


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ficial dam. When the dam is nearly full, the water is drawn off at the
bottom, and the bituminous mixture is left exposed to the heat of the sun,
until reduced to the consistency of soft mud. It is then placed in a large
caldron, covered over, and submitted to a slight heat by heaping fire on the lid.
After a gentle simmering for a short time the fire is removed, and the substance,
when cold, is bitumen prepared for use. Saiy ids (or descendants of Mahamad)
at Shustar enjoy the sole right and privilege of making bitumen here.
The black slime floating on the surface, or settling on the white gypsum
banks and detached blocks, produces a curious and striking contrast. The
water contains a great quantity of sulphur in solution, which is deposited along
the bed of the stream, and is collected. The stench of sulphur in the ravine is
almost unbearable. From these springs are collected annually about 2,000
mauns (or 12,000 lbs. English) of liquid naphtha and prepared bitumen, which,
including the expense of collecting, of manufacturing, and of carriage, are sold
in Shustar at the following rate :—Liquid naphtha, kran per maun, or
per lb.; bitumen, at 2 krans per maun, or per lb. There might
be collected 7,000 or 8,000 mauns annually if there were sufficient demand.
There are various other bitumen springs in the immediate neighbourhood, the
refuse-waters of which fall into the Ab-i-Shur ("Salt River"), which is the
receptacle for every species of villanous water, whether bituminous, naphthous,
salty, or sulphureous, rising among the gypseous deposits of that region [see
page 334).
(2) Nummuliilc Series,
The rocks of the nummulifcic series constitute the most remarkable feature
of the Zagros, and extend, to my knowledge, from Shiraz to Mount Ararat, a
distance of 800 geographical miles.
They rise from beneath the beds of the gypsum formation in elongated
saddles of compact crystalline limestone, running parallel to each other, and
having a quaquaversal dip. Frequently, when much elevating force has been
exerted, huge masses of the limestone stand isolated, with lofty precipices on
all sides, bearing on their summits acres of pasturage and springs of delicious
water, to which the native chiefs and their adherents can retire in safety, and,
with a handful of men, defy the whole power of the Persian Government.
Of the saddle-formed ridges the most remarkable is the range of Kealun
(fig. 3). It forms the eastern edge of the trough through which the Karkhah
river flows before passing into the plains, and it extends 35 miles in a per
fectly straight line. Seen in perspective, its outline resembles a gigantic
model of the Crystal Palace, the uniform curve of the dome being very remark
able and imposing [seepages 206 to 210),
The Kabir Kuh, which bounds the western side of the same trough (fig.
8), is another example of a similar kind; but the continuity of the layers is
frequently broken on the summit, and thus considerable precipices are the
result, the jagged edges of which were invaluable points for the survey of the
Innumerable examples of the saddle-shaped ranges might be adduced; for,
in fact, this is the usual form in which the nummulitic rocks show themselves
on the west of the central axis, where the elevating force has been less general
ly experienced than in the interior of the chain. In the latter position, as is
naturally to be expected, the strata have been forced asunder, and present
mural cliffs of great height on either side of long valleys of elevation.

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Military Report on South-West Persia, Including the Provinces of Khuzistan (Arabistan), Luristan, and Part of Fars by Major and Bt. Lieut-Col. Mark S. Bell, V.C., R.E.

Publication Details: Simla: Government Central Branch Press, 1885. Prepared in the Intelligence Branch of the Quarter Master General's Department in India.

Physical Description: 3 maps in end pockets. 41 plates.

Extent and format
1 volume (390 pages)

This volume contains a table of contents giving chapter headings and page references.

Physical characteristics

Dimensions: 245mm x 150mm

Written in
English in Latin script
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'Military Report on South-West Persia, Including the Provinces of Khuzistan (Arabistan), Luristan, and Part of Fars' [‎354] (401/466), British Library: Printed Collections, V 8685, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 21 August 2019]

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