He appears to have ascended from Kabul to the plateau of the Pamir, and thence onwards by Yarkand, Khotan and Aksu.
High plateaus like that of Pamir (the " Roof of the World ") and Armenia, and lofty mountain chains like the snow-clad Caucasus, the Alai, the Tian-shan, the Sayan Mountains, exist only on the outskirts of the empire.
The high tableland of Tibet and Pamir to the lower plateaus of Mongolia, and thence N.E.
Higher portions of the plateau formation the empire has only comparatively recently planted its foot on the Pamir, and it was only a few years earlier that it established itself firmly on the highlands of Armenia.
Of the Pamir, the Tian-shan and the Ala-tau mountain regions, and farther N.E.
To General the west of Kashgar the central depression is limited by physio- the meridional range of Sarikol and the great elevation graphs* of the Pamir, of which the Sarikol is the eastern face.
Shelving gradually upward from the low flats of Siberia the general continental level rises to a great central waterparting, or divide, which stretches from the Black Sea through the Elburz and the Hindu Kush to the Tian-shan mountains in the Pamir region, and hence to Bering Strait on the extreme north-east.
The Pamir highlands between the base of the Tian-shan mountains and the eastern buttresses of the Hindu Kush unite these two great divides, enclosing the Gobi depression on the west; and they would again be united on the east but for the transverse valley of the Amur, which parts the Khingan mountains from the Yablonoi system to the east of Lake Baikal.
The reason that the source of the noise is such an enigma is that no one ever traced the sound when they heard it.
From the western end of the Yablonoi range, on the 115th meridian, a mountainous belt extends along a somewhat irregular line to the extremity of Pamir, known under various names Mongolia.
The astronomical observatory at Tashkent is adopted for the initial starting-point of the trans-Caspian triangulation of Russia; the triangulation ranks as second-class only, and now extends to the Pamir frontier beyond Osh.
The latter continued the Pamir triangulation, which had been carried across the Hindu Kush by Colonels Sir T.
Wahab during the Pamir Boundary Commission of 1895, into the plains of Kashgar and to the sources of the Zarafshan.
Most important great natural mountain divisions of the boundary world, consists of two parallel chains, of which the western is the water-divide of the Pamirs, and the eastern (which has been known as the Kashgar or Kandar range) is split at intervals by lateral gorges to allow of the passage of the main drainage from the eastern Pamir slopes.
The great central depression of the continent which reaches from the foot of the Pamir plateau on the west through the Tarim desert to Lop Nor and the Gobi has yielded up many interesting Chinese secrets.
Where the Oxus river takes its great bend to the north from Ishkashim, the breadth of the Afghan territory intervening between that river and the main water-divide of the Hindu Kush is not more than 10 or 12 m.; and east of the Pamir extension of Afghanistan, where the Beyik Pass crosses the Sarikol range and drops into the Taghdumbash Pamir, there is but the narrow width of the Karachukar valley between the Sarikol and the Murtagh.
The Pamir extension of Afghan territory to the north-east reaches to a point a little short of 75° E., from whence it follows the waterdivide to the head of the Taghdumbash Pamir, and is thenceforward defined by the water-parting of the Hindu Kush.
R.G.S., 1897; Ney Elias and Ross, A History of the Moghuls of Central Asia, from the Tarskh-i-Rastisdi of Mirza Haidar (London, 1898); Grenard, Mission scientifique sur la Haute Asie (Paris, 1898); Dr Sven Hedin, Through Asia (London, 1898); Central Asia and Tibet (1903); Geographie des Hochlandes von Pamir (Berlin, 1894); Captain M.
The Alai range of the Pamir, continued by the Kokshaltau range and the Khan-tengri group of the Tian-shan, and the Sailughem range of the Altai, which is continued in the unnamed border-range of West Sayan (between the Bei-kem and the Us), belong to this category.
Skirting round the head of the Tagdumbash Pamir, it finally merges into the Pamir boundary, and turns westwards, following the course of the Oxus, to the junction of that river and the Khanabad (Kunduz).
Now, however, the Darwaz extension northwards is exchanged for the Russian Pamir extension westwards,.
Of which the physiography belongs rather to the Pamir type than to that of the Hindu Kush.
Of its length, from its roots in the Pamir regions till it fades into the Koh-i-Baba to the west of Kabul, this great range forms the water-divide between the Kabul and the Oxus basins, and, for the first 200 m.
It may be said to spring from the head of the Taghdumbash Pamir, where it unites with the great meridional system of Sarikol stretching northwards, and the yet more impressive mountain barrier of Murtagh, the northern base of which separates China from the semi-independent territory of Kanjut.
The Wakhjir pass, crossing the head of the Taghdumbash Pamir into the sources of the river Hunza, almost marks the trijunction of the three great chains of mountains.
From a little ice-bound lake called Gaz Kul, or Karambar, which lies on the crest of the Hindu Kush near its northern origin at the head of the Taghdumbash Pamir, two very important river systems (those of Chitral and Hunza) are believed to originate.
The following are the chief recent authorities: - Report of the RussoAfghan Boundary Commission (1886); Report of Lockhart's Mission (1886); Report of Asmar Boundary Commission (1895); Report of Pamir Boundary Commission (1896); J.
On the east the Pamir highlands are fenced off from the East Turkestan lowlands by the double border-ridge of Sarik-kol (the Sarik-kol range and the Murtagh or Kashgar range), which has its eastern foot down in the Tarim basin (4000-4500 ft.) and its western up on the Pamirs at 10,500 to 13,000 ft.
The final survey of the Pamir region (wherein the heads of all the chief tributaries of the river lay hidden), by the Pamir boundary commission of 1895 established the following topographical facts in connexion with this question.
The elevated mountain chain which is now called the Nicolas range, which divides the Great from the Little Pamir, is a region of vast glaciers and snow-fields, from which the lakes lying immediately north and south derive the greater part of their water-supply.
On the south a similar stream starting farther east, called Burgutai (denoting the position of a difficult and dangerous pass across the range) sweeps downwards towards Lake Chakmaktin, the lake of the Little Pamir, which is some 400 ft.
But at the foot of the mountain this stream bifurcates in the swamps which lie to the west of Chakmaktin, and part of its waters find their way eastwards into the lake, and part flow away westwards into the Ab-i-Panja, which joins the Pamir river from Lake Victoria at Kala Panja.
This at any rate is the action of the Burgutai stream during certain seasons of the year, so that the glaciers and snowfields of the Nicolas range may be regarded as the chief fountain-head of at least two of the upper tributaries of the Oxus, namely, the Aksu (or Murghab) and the Pamir river, and as contributing largely to a third, the Ab-i-Panja.
The glacial origin of the Pamir valleys is everywhere apparent in their terrace formations and the erratic blocks and boulders that lie scattered about their surface.
If the Aksu (or Murghab) and the Pamir river from Lake Victoria are to be considered in the light of independent tributaries, it is probable that the Ab-i-Panja contributes as large a volume of glacial flood to the Oxus as either of them.
North of the bend, where the Suchan or Ghund joins the Oxus from the Alichur Pamir, there is another and larger post called Charog.
A road will connect Charog with the Alichur Pamir, following the general course of the Ghund stream, a road which will form a valuable link in the chain of communications between Bokhara and Sarikol.
Eighty-five miles north of Ishkashim, at Kala Wamar, the river which rises in the Little Pamir, and which is called Aksu, Murghab, or Bartang, joins the Oxus from the east.
At this point the measurement of the comparative lengths of the chief Pamir tributaries of the Oxus is as follows: To the head of the Aksu at Lake Chakmaktin.
To the head of the most easterly tributary of Lake Victoria, in the Great Pamir, about.
The two latter are united in the main stream of the Oxus, the volume of which has been further increased by the united forces of the Ghur d and Shakhdara draining the Alichur Pamir and the heights of Shignan.
630-644, found Termez, Khulm, Balkh, and above all Bamian, amply provided with monasteries, stupas and colossal images, which are the striking characteristics of prevalent Buddhism; even the Pamir highlands had their monasteries.
The administration of the whole of the states on the right bank of the Oxus, down to the Russian boundary line at Ichka Yar, is now in the hands of Bokhara, including Karateghin - which the Russians have transferred to it from Khokand - and Darwaz at the entrance to the Pamir highlands.
AUTHoRITIEs.-Although much has been written of late years about the sources of the Oxus within the region of the Pamirs, there is very little to be found in the writings of geographers of modern date descriptive of that part of its course which separates Darwaz and Afghan Turkestan from Bokhara, and that little is chiefly in the pages of reports and gazettes, &c., which are not available to the public. The following authorities may be consulted: The Report of the Pamir Boundary Commission of 1895, published at Calcutta (1897); Dr A.
The Pamir Commission of 1895 settled its north-eastern border.
A part of the little Pamir is included in Afghan territory, but the boundary crosses this Pamir before the great bend northwards of the Aksu takes place, and, passing over a series of crags and untraversable mountain ridges, is lost on the Chinese frontier in the 66° Longitude East 68° of Greenwich 7e snowfields of Sarikol.
From the abutment of the Hindu Kush on the Sarikol in the Pamir regions to Landi Kotal, and throughout its eastern and southern limits, the boundary of Afghanistan touches districts which were brought under British political control with the formation of the North-West Frontier Provinces of India in 1901.
Durand, The First Afghan War (1879); Wyllie's Essays on the External Policy of India (1875); Elphinstone, Account of the Kingdom of Kabul (1809); Parliamentary Papers, " Afghanistan "; Curzon, Problems in the Far East; Holdich, Indian Borderland( 1901); India (1903); Indian Survey Reports; Russo-Afghan Boundary Commission (1886); Pamir Boundary Commission (1896).
3 From his capital at Purushapura (Peshawar) he not only maintained his hold on north-western India, but conquered Kashmir, attacked Pataliputra, carried on a successful war with the Parthians, and led an army across the appalling passes of the Taghdumbash Pamir to the conquest of Kashgar, Yarkand and Khotan.
Of its other neighbors, we must here mention the Sacae, a warlike equestrian people in the mountains of the pamir plateau and northward; who are probably of Mongol origin.
From this point he directed several campaigns against the Amyrgian Sacae, on the Pamir Plateau and northwards, whom he enumerates in his list of subject races, and whose mounted archers formed a main division of the armies despatched against the Greeks.
Turkestan, and are scattered along the numerous rivers which issue from the steep slopes of the Pamir in the W., and the Karakoram and Kuen-Lun Mountains in the S.
This time, however, he crosses Pamir, of which he gives a remarkable account, and passes by Kashgar, Khotan (Kustana), and the vicinity of Lop-nor across the desert to Kwa-chow, whence he had made his venturous and lonely plunge into the waste fifteen years before.
Forsyth to Yarkand led to the first systematic geographical exploitation of the Pamir country.
Bonvalot in 1887, Littledale in 1888, Cumberland, Bower and Dauvergne, followed by Younghusband in succeeding years, extending to 1890; Dunmore in 1892 and Sven Hedin in 1894-1895, have all contributed more or less to Pamir geography; but the honours of successful inquiry in those high altitudes still fall to Lord Curzon, whose researches in 1894 led to a singularly clear and comprehensive description of Pamir geography, as well as to the best map compilation that till then had existed.
Our estimate of the extent of Pamir conformation depends much on the significance of the word Pamir.
The absence of any vegetation beyond grass or scrub is a striking feature common to both Pamir and Chang, but there the resemblance ceases, and the physical conformation of mountain and valley to the east and to the west of the upper sources of the Zarafshan is radically distinct.
The axis, or backbone, of Pamir formation is the great meridional mountain chain of Sarikol - the ancient Taurus of tradition and history - on which stands the highest peak north of the Himalaya, the Murtagh Ata (25,000 ft.).
On the west the following are generally recognized as distinct Pamirs: (1) the Great Pamir, of which the dominant feature is Lake Victoria; (2) the Little Pamir, separated from the Great Pamir on the north by what is now known as the Nicolas range; (3) the Pamir-i-Wakhan, which is the narrow trough of the Wakhan tributary of the Oxus, the term Pamir applying to its upper reaches only; (4) the Alichur - the Pamir of the Yeshil Kul and Ghund - immediately to the north of the Great Pamir; (5) the Sarez Pamir, which forms the valley of the Murghab river, which has here found its way round the east of the Great Pamir and the Alichur from the Little Pamir, and now makes westwards for the Oxus.
At the foot of the Sarez Pamir stands the most advanced Russian outpost of Murghabi.
To the east of the Sarikol chain is the Taghdumbash Pamir, which claims many of the characteristics of the western Pamirs at its upper or western extremity, where the Karachukar, which drains it, is a comparatively small stream.
Out northwards for a comparatively straight run to Tashkurghan, dividing asunder the two parallel ranges of Sarikol and Kandar, which together form the Sarikol chain, the appellation Pamir can hardly be maintained.
One other so-called Pamir exists to the east of Sarikol, separated therefrom by the eastern range (the Kandar) of the Sarikol, which is known as Mariom or Mariong.