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‘Military report on south-west Persia, including the provinces of Khúzistán (Arabistan), Luristán and part of Fars.’ [‎4v] (13/470)

The record is made up of 1 volume (231 folios). It was created in 1885. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.

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Report marked strictly confidential, prepared in the Intelligence Branch of the Quarter Master General’s Department in India, by the Assistant Quarter Master General, Major and Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Mark Sever Bell, Royal Engineers. The volume was published by the Government Central Branch Press, Simla, 1885.

The contents of the volume are as follows:

  • part I, a narrative description of a journey from India to Muhammerah [Khorramshahr], through to the Luristán [Lorestān] hills, to Kúm [Qom]; from Kúm to Gulpaigán [Golpāyegān ], Chaman-i-Sultán [Chaman Solţān], Ali-Gúdar [Alīgūdarz], Imámzádá-Ishmail [Emāmzādeh Esmā‘īl], and the Zaindarúd River [Zāyandeh Rūd] to Isfahán; from Isfahán through the Kúhgehlú [Kohgīlūyeh] hills to Behbahán and Bandar-Dilám [Bandar-e Deylam]; from Bandar-Dilám to Bushire
  • part II, a detailed account of southwest Persia, compiled from Sever’s own observations and other available sources
  • part III, commercial considerations. A further section in this chapter on strategic observations, which is mentioned on the contents page and marked as secret, is not present in the volume
  • part IV, detailed road reports
  • appendix A, road reports, Isfahan to Shústar [Shūshtar], Shústar to Shíráz [Shīrāz], compiled in 1881 by Captain Henry Lake Wells, Assistant Director of Persian Telegraphs, with additional annotations by Bell
  • appendix B, a list of plant specimens collected in Luristán during April and May 1884
  • appendix C, extracts of a paper on the geology of the Turko-Persian frontier, written by William Kennett Loftus, June 1854
  • appendix D, meteorological observations at Bushire, from 20 March to 20 June 1885

The volume includes eight maps, two photographic plates, and illustrations throughout (topographical, architectural, anthropological). The two photographic plates and some of the maps are of an earlier date than the volume’s publication date of 1885.

Extent and format
1 volume (231 folios)

A contents page (f 7) and index (ff 222-226) refer to the volume’s original printed pagination.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front cover with 1, and terminates at the inside back cover with 233; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio.

Pagination: the file also contains an original printed pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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‘Military report on south-west Persia, including the provinces of Khúzistán (Arabistan), Luristán and part of Fars.’ [‎4v] (13/470), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/9, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 10 April 2020]

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