At the point west of Resht, where the direction of the principal range changes to one of N.W.
South of Resht this section is broken through at almost a right angle by the Safid Rud (White river),and along it runs the principal commercial road between the Caspian and inner Persia, Resht-Kazvin-Teheran.
The northern slopes of the Elburz and the lowlands which lie between them and the Caspian, and together form the provinces of Gilan, Mazandaran and Astarabad, are covered with dense forest and traversed by hundreds (Persian writers say 1362) of perennial rivers and streams. The breadth of the lowlands between the foot of the hills and the sea is from 2 to 25 m., the greatest breadth being in the meridian of Resht in Gilan, and in the districts of Amol, Sari and Barfurush in Mazandaran.
RESHT, the capital of the province of Gilan in Persia, in 37° 17' N., and 49° 36' E., on the left bank of the Siah-rud (Black river), which is a branch of the Sefid-rud (White river), and flows into the Murdab, lagoon of Enzeli.
Shore of the Caspian, to Resht is 14 m.
Resht has a population of 60,000 and is the residence of English, Russian, French and Turkish consuls and the seat of the governor-general of the province of Gilan.
A good carriage road constructed and worked by a Russian company and opened to traffic in 1899 connects Resht with Teheran via Kazvin.
ENZELI, the port of Resht in the S.E.
Of Resht, in 37° 2 9 ' N., 49° 28' E.
Sailing into the Caspian, he ravaged the Persian coasts from Derbend to Baku, massacred the inhabitants of the great emporium of Resht, and in the spring of 1669 established himself on the isle of Suina, off which, in July, he annihilated a Persian fleet sent against him.
Tabriz was for a long period the emporium for the trade of Persia on the west, but since the opening of the railway through the Caucasus and greater facilities for transport on the Caspian, much of its trade with Russia has been diverted to Astara and Resht, while the insecurity on the Tabriz-Trebizond route since 1878 has diverted much commerce to the Bagdad road.
Other ports in addition to those just mentioned are Astrakhan, on the Volga; Petrovsk, Derbent and Lenkoran, on the west shore; Enzeli or Resht, and Astarabad, on the Persian coast; and Mikhailovsk, on the east coast.
In March 1877 plague broke out in Resht, a town of 20,000 inhabitants, in the province of Ghilan, near the Caspian Sea at its south-west angle, from which there is a certain amount of trade with Astrakhan.
An official physician, Dr Kastorsky, who investigated the matter for the government, declared the disease to be identical with that prevailing in the same year at Resht in Persia; another physician, Dr Janizky, even gave it the name of pestis nostras.
With respect to the origin of this epidemic, the possibility of its having originated on the spot, as in Resht and on the Euphrates in very similar situations, is not to be denied.
The Astrakhan disease may have been imported from Resht or Baku, or may have been caused concurrently with the epidemics of these places by some cause affecting the basin of the Caspian generally.
East of Resht, is only 210 m.
The olive is cultivated at Rudbar south of Resht in Gilan, and a few isolated olive-trees have been observed in central and southern Persia.
Isfahan (100,000); Meshed (8o,ooo); Kerman, Resht, Shiraz (6o,ooo); Barfurush, Kazvin, Yezd (5o,ooo); Hamadan, Kermnshah (40,000); Kashan, Khoi, Urmia (35,000); Birjend, Burujird, Bushire, Dizful, Kum, Senendij (Sinna), Zenjan (25,00o to 30,000); Amol, Ardebil, Ardistan, Astarabad, Abekuh, Barn, Bander, Abbasi, Bander Lingah, Damghan, Dilman, Istahbanat, Jahnim, Khunsar, Kumishah, Kuchan, Marand, Maragha, Nishapur, Sari, Sabzevar, Samnan, Shahrud, Shushter (1o,ooo to 20,000).
Tutun is cultivated in Azerbaijan, near Urmia and other places near the Turkish frontier, in Kurdistan, and, since 1875, in the district of Resht,in Gilan.
Commerce.The principal centres of commerce are Tabriz, Teheran, Resht, Meshed and Yezd; the principal, ports Bander Abbasi, Lingah, Bushire and Muhamrah on the Persian Gulf, and Astara, Enzeli, Meshed i Sar and Bander i Gez on the Caspian.
About three-fifths of this number belong to the diocese of Azerbaijan, with a bishop at Tabriz, and reside in the cities of Tabriz, KhoI, Selmas, Urmia and Maragha, and in about thirty villages close to the north-western frontier; the other two-fifths, under the diocese of Isfahan, with a bishop in Julfa, reside in Teheran, Hamadan, Julfa, Shiraz, Bushire, Resht, Enzeli and other towns, and in some villages in the districts of Chahar Mahal, Feridan, Barbarud, Kamareh, Kazaz, Kharakan, &c. Many Persian Armenians are engaged in trade and commerce, and some of their merchants dispose of much capital, but the bulk live on the proceeds of agriculture and are poor.
The religious missions ministering to their spiritual welfare are: (1) The board of foreign missions of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America, which has six establishments in Persia: Urmia since 1835, Teheran since 1872, Tabriz since 1873, Hamadan since 1880, Resht since r902 and Kazvin since 1903.
Tea plantations, with seeds and plants from Assam, Ceylon and the Himalayas, were started in the early part of 1900 on the slopes of the hills south of Resht at an altitude of about 1000 ft.
There is only one good road in the province, that from Enzeli to Kazvin by way of Resht; in other parts communication is by narrow and frequently impassable lanes through the thick forest, or by intricate pathways through the dense undergrowth.
The province is divided into the following administrative districts: Resht (with the capital and its immediate neighbourhood), Fumen (with Tulam and Mesula, where are iron mines), Gesker, Talish (with Shandarman, Kerganrud, Asalim, GilDulab, Talish-Dulab), Enzeli (the port of Resht), Sheft, Manjil (with Rahmetabad and Amarlu), Lahijan (with Langarud, Rudsar and Ranehkuh), Dilman and Lashtnisha.
The system of irrigation formerly carried on by these canals rendered the plain of Kazvin one of the most fertile regions in Persia; now most of the canals are choked up. The city has a population of about 50,000 and a thriving transit trade, particularly since 1899 when the carriage road between Resht and Teheran with Kazvin as a half-way stage was opened under the auspices of the Russian "Enzeli-Teheran Road Company."
He calls Aga Mahommed chief of Mazandaran, as also of Astarabad and some districts situate in Khurasan, and describes his tribe the Kajar, to be, like the Indian Rajput, usually devoted to the profession of arms. Whatever hold his father may have had on Gilan, it is certain that this province was not then in the sons possession, for his brother, Jiafir Kuli, governor of Baifrush (Balfroosh), had made a recent incursion into it and driven Hidaiyat Khan, its ruler, from Resht to Enzeli, and Aga Mahommed was himself meditating another attack on the same quarter.
The establishments of Tabriz and Urmia form the Western Persia Mission, those of Teheran, Hamadan, Resht and Kazvin the Eastern Persia Mission.
It has branches at Tabriz, Resht, Mesheol and other places.