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A Peep into Toorkisthhan   By:

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A

PEEP INTO TOORKISTHAN.

BY CAPTAIN ROLLO BURSLEM,

THIRTEENTH PRINCE ALBERT'S LIGHT INFANTRY.

1846.

[Transcriber's Note: [=a] is representing a macron, unicode character U0101, and [=A] is representing A macron, unicode character U0100. This is usually pronounced as a long a. There are around 240 instances of vowels accented with macrons (straight line above), mostly A macron or a macron, with one instance of e macron, and five instances of u macron, and one u that should be u macron(Dao[=u]b) and isn't (Daoub).

Use of the macron is not consistent throughout the text...

...and the spelling of some place names is not consistent either: e.g. Toorkisth[=an]; Toorkisthan; Toorkistan.

(There are also a number of words with 'unusual' spellings.

These spellings I have corrected:

territories for territorities; retrograde for retrogade; amongst for amonst.

These 'period' spellings I have left intact:

befel, chace, surprized, loth, gallopped, gallopping, secresy, shew, shewed, shewing, preeminence, handfull, negociation, threshhold, trellice, picketted, barricadoed, compaign.

I have also retained M'Naghten for the modern McNaghten.)]

[Illustration: Drawn by Mr Gompertz Pelham Richardson Litho. View of the Outer Cave of Yeermallik, shewing the Entrance Hole to the larger Cavern]

[Illustration: MAP OF CABUL AND THE KOHISTAN WITH THE ROUTE FOR KOOLLUM]

A PEEP INTO TOORKISTHAN.

BY CAPTAIN ROLLO BURSLEM, THIRTEENTH PRINCE ALBERT'S LIGHT INFANTRY.

1846.

TO THE

RIGHT HON. THE EARL OF CARNARVON, HIGHCLERE CASTLE.

MY LORD,

Having received your Lordship's permission to dedicate to you this my first essay as an Author, I beg to tender my best acknowledgements for the honour, and for the interest you have so kindly expressed in the success of the following pages. Under such favourable auspices a successful result may be confidently anticipated by

Your Lordship's Obliged and obedient servant,

ROLLO BURSLEM.

HAREWOOD LODGE, HAMPSHIRE.

TO THE READER.

The following pages are literally what they profess to be, a record of a few weeks snatched from a soldier's life in Affghanist[=a]n, and spent in travels through a region which few Europeans have ever visited before. The notes from which it is compiled were written on the desert mountains of Central Asia, with very little opportunity, as will be easily supposed, for study or polish. Under these circumstances, it can hardly be necessary to deprecate the criticism of the reader. Composition is not one of the acquirements usually expected of a soldier. What is looked for in his narrative is not elegance, but plainness. He sees more than other people, but he studies less, and the strangeness of his story must make up for the want of ornament. I can hardly expect but that the reader may consider the style of my chapters inferior to many of those which are supplied to the public by those who are fortunate enough to enjoy good libraries and plenty of leisure; two advantages which a soldier on service seldom experiences. But this I cannot help. Such as they are, I offer him my unadorned notes; and perhaps he will be good enough to let one thing compensate another, and to recollect that if the style of the book is different from what he sometimes sees, yet the scenery is so too. If instead of a poetical composition he gets a straightforward story, yet instead of the Rhine or the Lakes he gets a mountain chain between Independent Tartary and China.

WALMAR BARRACKS, March , 1846.

A PEEP INTO TOORKISTH[=A]N.[]

[ Note: A portion of the following pages in their original form has appeared in the Asiatic Journal.]

CHAPTER I.

During the summer of 1840, the aspect of the political horizon in Affghanist[=a]n afforded but slight grounds for prognosticating the awful catastrophe which two short years after befel the British arms... Continue reading book >>




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