MARKHOR (" snake-eater"), the Pushtu name of a large Himalayan wild goat (Capra falconeri), characterized by its spirally twisted horns, and long shaggy winter coat.
Yet they also claim to be Pukhtun (or Pathan) in common with all other Pushtu-speaking tribes, whom they do not admit to be Afghan.
Pushtu, however, is the prevailing language, though it does not seem to be spoken in Herat, or, roughly speaking, west of the Helmund.
The oldest work in Pushtu is a history of the conquest of Swat by Shaikh Mali, a chief of the Yusafzais, and leader in the conquest (A.D.
In the reign of Akbar, Bayazid Ansari, called Pir-i-Roshan, " the Saint of Light," the founder of an heretical sect, wrote in Pushtu; as did his chief antagonist, a famous Afghan saint called Akhund Darweza.
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.
The chief languages spoken are vernaculars of Baluchistan, Pushtu, Panjabi, Urdu and Sindhi.
ROHILLA (a Pushtu word for "mountaineer"), a tribe of Afghan marauders, who, towards the beginning of the 18th century, conquered a district of Hindostan, giving it the name of Rohilkhand, which still survives as an alternative title of the Bareilly division of the United Provinces.
It is apparently derived from the Afghan name for their own language, Pushtu or Pukhtu, and may be traced back to the Paktues of Herodotus.
In 1901 the total number of Pathans in all India was nearly 31 millions, but the speakers of Pushtu numbered less than 14 millions.
The tribe, clan and section are alike distinguished by patronymics formed from the name of the common ancestor by the addition of the word zai or khel; zai being a corruption of the Pushtu word zoe, meaning son, while khel is an Arabic word meaning an association or company.