He turned his attention to the encroachments of the Afghans, and in 1781 reconquered the greater part of what had been lost to the south of the Oxus.
In March 1885 when the RussoAfghan Boundary Commission should have been engaged in settling the boundary-line, this portion of it was in dispute between the Afghans and the Russians.
The principal palace was the Chehel Situn (forty pillars), destroyed by the Afghans in 1723, and, although rebuilt by Nadir Shah in 1731, already in ruins in 1743.
Proc. R.G.S., 1879; Dr Bellew, Afghanistan and the Afghans (London, 1879); Nicolas Prjevalski, " Explorations in Asia," see vols.
Humayun was thus left in possession of his father's recent conquests, which were in dispute with the Indian Afghans under Sher Shah, governor of Bengal.
The dynasty established its independence of the Afghans towards the end of the 18th century, and made a treaty with the British in 1838 to which it has always been loyal.
Abdur Rahman and his successor Habibullah steadfastly refused the offer of British engineers to strengthen its defences; and though the Afghans themselves have occasionally undertaken repairs, it is doubtful whether the old walls of Herat are maintained in a state of efficiency.
Damghan was destroyed by the Afghans in 1723.
In 1808 he was appointed the first British envoy to the court of Kabul, with the object of securing a friendly alliance with the Afghans; but this proved of little value, because Shah Shuja was driven from the throne by his brother before it could be ratified.
Besides these there are Afghans, Persians, Jews, Arabs and Armenians.
It was a flourishing city several miles in circuit when it was destroyed by the Afghans in 1722, but is now a decayed place, with crumbled walls and mouldering towers and a population of barely 15,000.
This outrage was instantly avenged, for in October Earl (then Sir Frederick) Roberts with a large force defeated the Afghans on the 6th and took possession of Kabul on the 12th.
In Doi I Mahmud, after a short campaign against the Afghans under Mahommed ibn Stir in the hill country of Ghur, marched again into the Punjab.
Other routes there are, open to trade, between Herat and northern India, either following the banks of the Hari Rud, or, more circuitously, through the valley of the Helmund to Kabul; or the line of hills between the Arghandab and the Tarnak may be crossed close to Kalat-i-Ghilzai; but of the two former it may be said that they are not ways open to the passage of Afghan armies owing to the hereditary hostility existing between the Aeimak and Hazara tribes and the Afghans generally, while the latter is not beyond striking distance from Kandahar.
Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni took it in the IIth century from the Afghans who then held it.
It remained in Persian possession till 1709, when it was taken by the Afghans, but was retaken after a two years' siege by Nadir Shah.
Nadir Shah was assassinated in 1749, and immediately on hearing the news of his death Ahmad Shah (Abdali) seized Nadir Shah's treasure at Kandahar, and proclaimed himself king, with the consent, not only of the Afghans, but, strange to say, of the Hazaras and Baluchis as well.
On the left bank of the river the Afghans main- the Oxus.
About 1765 the wazir of Ahmad Shah Abdali of Kabul invaded Badakshan, and from that time until now the domination of the countries on the south bank of the Oxus from Wakhan to Balkh has been a matter of frequent struggles between Afghans and Uzbegs.
The Afghans are expert agriculturists and make profitable use of all the natural sources of water-supply.
From Kabul the old route followed the Kabul river through the valley of Laghman (or Lamghan, as the Afghans call it) over a gentle water-parting into the Kunar valley, leaving Ningrahar and Jalalabad to the south.
The Afghans vaunt the salubrity and charm of some local climates, as of the Toba hills above the Kakar country, and of some of the high valleys of the Safed Koh.
The Durani Afghans claim to be Ben-i-Israel, and insist on their descent from the tribes who were carried away captive from Palestine to Media by Nebuchadrezzar.
The settled Afghans form the village communities, and in part the population of the few towns.
As a race the Afghans are very handsome and athletic, often with fair complexion and flowing beard, generally black or brown, sometimes, though rarely, red; the features highly aquiline.
The Afghans, inured to bloodshed from childhood, are familiar with death, and audacious in attack, but easily discouraged by failure; excessively turbulent and unsubmissive to law or discipline; apparently frank and affable in manner, especially when they hope to gain some object, but capable of the grossest brutality when that hope ceases.
Among themselves the Afghans are quarrelsome, intriguing and distrustful; estrangements and affrays are of constant occurrence; the traveller conceals and misrepresents the time and direction of his journey.
The Afghans are eternally boasting of their lineage, their independence and their prowess.
They look on the Afghans as the first of nations, and each man looks on himself as the equal of any Afghan.
The vast majority of Afghans are of the Sunni sect; but there are, in their midst, such powerful communities of Shiahs as the Hazaras of the central districts, the Kizilbashes of Kabul and the Turis of the Kurram border, nor is there between them that bitterness of sectarian animosity which is so marked a feature in India.
In the western provinces about Kandahar (amongst the Durani Afghans - the people who claim to be Beni-Israel), and especially in Zamindawar, the spirit of fanaticism runs high, and every other Afghan is a possible Ghazi - a man who has devoted his life to the extinction of other creeds.
Persian is the vernacular of a large part of the non-Afghan population, and is familiar to all educated Afghans; it is the language of the court and of literature.
The clannish attachment of the Afghans is rather to the community than to the chief.
One of these, called by the Afghans bandrak, or the spring crop, is sown in the end of autumn and reaped in summer.
Species of mungoose (Herpestes), species of otter, Mustela erminea, and two ferrets, one of them with tortoise-shell marks, tamed by the Afghans to keep down vermin; a marten (M.
From Kais and his three sons the whole of the genuine Afghans claim descent.
This story is repeated in great and varying detail in sundry books by Afghans, the oldest of which appears to be of the 16th century; nor do we know that any trace of the legend is found of older date.
The historian Ferishta says he had read that the Afghans were descended from Copts of the race of Pharaoh.
But the Hebrew ancestry of the Afghans is more worthy at least of consideration, for a respectable number of intelligent officers, well acquainted with the Afghans, have been strong in their belief of it; and though the customs alleged in proof will not bear the stress laid on them, undoubtedly a prevailing type of the Afghan physiognomy has a character strongly Jewish.
In the last name it has been plausibly suggested that we have the Pukhtun, as the eastern Afghans pronounce their name.
Indeed, Pasht, Pasht or Pakht would seem to be the oldest name of the country of the Afghans in their traditions.
A passage in Ferishta seems to imply that the Afghans in the Sulimani mountains were already known by that name in the first century of the Hegira, but it is uncertain how far this may be built on.
The name Afghans is very distinctly mentioned in 'Utbi's History of Sultan Mahmud, written about A.D.
But he gained the goodwill of the Afghans, and enrolled many in his army.
At a conference (December 23) with the Dost's son, Akbar Khan, who had taken the lead of the Afghans, Sir W.
A fresh expedition was instantly despatched across the Shutargardan Pass under Sir Frederick Roberts, who defeated the Afghans at Charasia near Kabul, and entered the city in October.
The work went on with much difficulty and contention, until in March 1885, when the amir was at Rawalpindi for a conference with the viceroy of India, Lord Dufferin, the news came that at Panjdeh, a disputed place on the boundary held by the Afghans, the Russians had attacked and driven out with some loss the amir's troops.
The pure Mahommedans may again be subdivided into f our sections: Moguls, or the descendants of the last conquering race, including Persians; Afghans or Pathans, who from their proximity to the frontier are much more strongly represented, chiefly in the Punjab and in the Rohilkhand division of the United Provinces; Sayads, who claim to be lineally descended from the Prophet; and Sheikhs, which is a name often adopted by converts.
The Afghans of Ghor thus rose to power on the downfall of the Turks of Ghazni.
In Humayun's reign the subject Afghans rose in revolt under Sher Shah, a native of Bengal, who for a short time established his authority over all Hindustan.
When his father died he was absent in the Punjab, fighting the revolted Afghans, under the guardianship of Bairam Khan, a native of Badakshan, whose military skill largely contributed to recover the throne for the Mogul line.
In the same year his generals drove out the Afghans from Bengal, and reunited the lower valley of the Ganges to Hindustan.
The Mahrattas closed round Delhi from the south, and the Afghans from the west.
On the west the shahzada or imperial prince, known afterwards as the emperor Shah Alam, with a mixed army of Afghans and Mahrattas, and supported by the nawab wazir of Oudh, was advancing his own claims to the province of Bengal.
At one time it seemed probable that the Mahratta confederacy would expel the Mahommedans even from northern India; but the decisive battle of Panipat, won by the Afghans in 1761, gave a respite to the Delhi empire.
Of no common race and of no common religion, they welcomed to their ranks the outlaws and broken tribes of all India - Afghans, Mahrattas or Jats.
The rest perished in the defiles of Khurd Kabul and Jagdalak, either from the knives and matchlocks of the Afghans or from the effects of cold.
DURANI, or Durrani, the dominant race of Afghans, to which the ruling family at Kabul belongs.
The Mahommedans are chiefly the descendants of Yusafzai Afghans, called the Rohilla Pathans, who settled in the country about the year 1720.
In Herodotus their place is taken by the Pactyans, whose name survives to the present day in the word Pushtu, with which the Afghans denote their language (Herod.
In the mountainous districts of Kandahar and Kabul the hardy tribes of Afghans had for centuries led a wild and almost independent life.
He was a clever and energetic man, and had been instructed to take severe measures with the Afghans, some of whom were suspected of intriguing to restore the city to the Delhi emperor.
His brother, Mir Abdallah, succeeded him in the government of the Afghans; but after a few months, Mahmud, a son of Mir Wai~, a very young man, murdered his uncle and assumed the title of a sovereign prince.
The court of Isfahan had no sooner received tidings of this disaster than Mahmud, with a large army of Afghans, invaded A~ Persia in the year f72i, seized Kermn, and in the ln~as~1r following year advanced to within four days march of the city of Isfahan.
India thus passed again from the Afghans to the Moguls, but six months afterwards Humayun was killed by a fall from the parapet of his palace (1556), leaving his kingdom to Akbar.