Most European travellers through this desolate land have testified to the fact that the most commendable trait in the Baluch is his practice of hospitality, or "zang," as it is called. As among the Arabs, a guest is held sacred, save by some of the wilder tribes on the Afghan frontier, who, though they respect a stranger actually under their roof, will rob and murder him without scruple as soon as he has departed. The natives of Kanero and Dhaira (the two villages lying between Noundra and Gwarjak) were, though civil, evidently not best pleased at our appearance, but the sight of a well-armed escort prevented any open demonstration of ill feeling.

The first day's work after Noundra was rough, so much so that the camels could scarcely struggle through the deep sand, or surmount the steep, pathless ridges of slippery rock that barred our progress every two or three miles. Though the greater part of the journey lay through deep, drifting sand, the soil in places was hard and stony, and here the babul tree and feesh palm grew freely, also a pretty star-shaped yellow flower, called by Baluchis the "jour." This plant is poisonous to camels, but, strangely enough, harmless to sheep, goats, and other animals.

For a desert-journey, we had little to complain of as regards actual discomfort. There were no mosquitoes or sandflies, and the heat, though severe, was never excessive save for a couple of hours or so at midday, when enforced imprisonment in a thin canvas tent became rather trying. There was absolutely no shade - not a tree of any kind visible from the day we left Beila till our arrival at Dhaira about midday on the 31st of March. Scarcity of water was our greatest difficulty. At Noundra it had been salt and brackish; at Kanero we searched in vain for a well. Had we known that a couple of days' march distant lay a land "with milk and honey blest," this would have inconvenienced us but little. The fact, however, that only three barrels of the precious liquid remained caused me some anxiety, especially as the first well upon which we could rely was at Gwarjak, nearly sixty miles distant.

The sight of Dhaira, on the morning of the 31st, relieved us of all further anxiety. This fertile plain, about fifteen miles long by ten broad, is bounded on the north-west by a chain of limestone mountains, the name of which I was unable to ascertain. Here for the second time since Beila we found a village and traces of inhabitants, the former encircled for a considerable distance by fields of maize and barley, enclosed by neat banks and hedges - a grateful contrast to the desolate waste behind us. It was the most perfect oasis imaginable. Shady forest trees and shrubs surrounded us on every side, a clear stream of running water fringed with ferns and wild flowers rippled through our camp, while the poor half-starved horses of the escort revelled in the long, rich grass. Hard by a cluster of three or four leaf huts, half hidden in a grove of date palms, lay (part of) the little village of Dhaira, deserted at this busy hour of the day save by women and children. The latter fled upon our arrival, and did not reappear until the evening, when the return of the men reassured them sufficiently to approach our tents and look upon the strange and unwelcome features of the Farangi without fear.

From here, by advice of the Wazir of Beila, a messenger was despatched to Malak, at Gwarjak, twenty miles distant, requesting permission to travel through his dominions. I resolved to proceed no further without the chief's sanction, or to afford him in any way an excuse for making himself unpleasant. In the mean time, arms and accoutrements were looked to, and the escort cleaned and smartened up as well as circumstances would permit. The natives overcame their shyness next morning, and brought us goat's milk and "rogan," or clarified butter. The Baluchis seldom eat meat, their food principally consisting of cakes or bread made of grain, with buttermilk and rice. A favourite preparation known as "shalansh," and called "krout" by the Afghans, is made by boiling buttermilk till the original quantity is reduced by half. The remainder is then strained through a thick felt bag, in the sun. When the draining ceases, the mass in the bag is formed into small lumps dried hard by the sun's rays. When required for use these lumps are pounded and placed in warm water, where they are worked by the hands until dissolved. The thickened fluid is then boiled with rogan and eaten with bread.

Assafoetida, indigenous to the country, is largely used among all classes for flavouring dishes. So much is this noxious plant liked by Baluchis, that it goes by the name of "khush-khorak," or pleasant food. At Kelat, in the palace of the Khan, I was offered it pickled, but it is usually eaten stewed in butter.

About midday, to my great surprise, Malak made his appearance in person, mounted on a good-looking chestnut stallion, its bridle and saddle adorned with gold and silver trappings. Four attendants followed on sorry-looking steeds. The chief, a tall, well-built fellow, about thirty years of age, with a sulky, sinister cast of countenance, was clad in a bright green satin jacket, white and gold turban, loose dark-blue trousers, and embroidered slippers. The loss of one eye gave him a still more unpleasant expression, a lock of coarse black hair being dragged over the face to conceal the disfigurement. The whole party were armed to the teeth, and carried guns, shields, and revolvers.

Our interview did not commence propitiously. Swinging himself off his horse, Malak returned my salutation with a sulky nod, and swaggered into the tent, signing to his suite to follow his example. Curtly refusing my offer of refreshment, he called for his pipe-bearer, and, lighting a kalyan, commenced puffing vigorously at some abominably smelling tobacco, which soon rendered the interior of the tent unbearable. It is, unfortunately, Baluch etiquette to allow a guest to open the conversation. Malak, well aware of this, maintained a stolid silence, and appeared hugely to enjoy the annoyance and impatience I tried in vain to conceal. It was not till nearly an hour had elapsed that this amiable visitor at last inquired, in a rude, surly tone, what I wanted. My interpreter's services were then called in, but it was not without demur and a long consultation with his suite that Malak consented to accompany me to Gwarjak on the morrow. Matters were finally arranged, on the understanding that I did not remain more than one day at Gwarjak, but proceeded to Kelat without delay.

I strolled out with a gun in the evening, and managed to bag a brace of partridges, which swarmed in the maize and barley fields. Overcoming the fears of the women, I was permitted to approach and inspect, though not enter, one of their dwellings. The latter, constructed of dried palm leaves, were about fifteen feet long by eight feet broad, and were entirely devoid of rugs, carpets, or furniture of any kind, and indescribably filthy. The men, though shy and suspicious, would have been friendly, had it not been for Malak, who followed me like a shadow; but nothing would induce the women and children to approach either Gerome or myself. "What is this?" said one old fellow to Malak, stroking my face with his horny, grimy palm. "I never saw anything like it before." Most of the men were clothed in dirty, discoloured rags. The women wore simply a cloth tied loosely over the loins, while male and female children fourteen or fifteen years old ran about stark naked.

A curious flower, the "kosisant," grows luxuriantly about here. It is in shape something like a huge asparagus, and about two feet high, being covered from top to bottom with tiny white-and-yellow blossoms, with a sweet but sickly perfume. It consists but of one shoot or stalk, and bursts through the ground apparently with great force, displacing the soil for several inches.

We left for Gwarjak at 5.30 the following morning. Etiquette compelled Malak to offer me his horse, while he mounted my camel - an operation effected with very bad grace by my host. The Baluch saddle consists simply of two sharp pieces of wood bound together by leathern thongs, and the exchange was by no means a welcome one so far as I was concerned. Had it cut me in two, however, I would have borne it, if only to punish this boorish ruffian for his insolence of yesterday. Malak's chief failing was evidently vanity, and he was very reluctant, even for an hour, to cede the place of honour to a European.

The road for the first ten miles or so lay along the dry bed of a river, which, I ascertained with difficulty from my one-eyed companion, is named the Mashki. Large holes, from eight to ten feet deep, had been dug for some distance by the Dhaira natives, forming natural cisterns or tanks. These were, even now, after a long spell of dry weather, more than half full, and the water, with which we filled barrels and flasks, clear, cold, and delicious.

The Shirengaz Pass, which crosses a chain of hills about five hundred feet high, separates the Dhaira Valley from the equally fertile district of Gwarjak. The ascent and descent are gradual and easy, and by ten o'clock we were in sight of Gwarjak, before midday had encamped within half a mile of the town, if a collection of straggling tumble-down huts can so be called. The news of our arrival had preceded us, and before tents were pitched the population had turned out en masse, and a mob of quite two hundred men, women, and children were squatted around our camp, watching, at a respectful distance, the proceedings of my men with considerable interest. Malak had meanwhile disappeared, ostensibly to warn the Wazir of our arrival.

Gwarjak is situated on the left bank of the Mashki river, and consists of some thirty huts, shapeless and dilapidated, built of dried palm leaves. About two hundred yards north of the village rises a steep almost perpendicular rock about a hundred feet high, on the summit of which is perched a small mud fort. The latter is crenelated, loopholed for musketry, and mounts six cannon of a very primitive kind. It was at once apparent that we were anything but welcome. The very sight of my armed escort seemed to annoy and exasperate the male population, while the women and children gathered together some distance off, flying in a body whenever one of our party approached them. I looked forward, with some impatience, to Malak's return, for Kamoo's request for the loan of a knife from one of the bystanders was met with an indignant refusal, accompanied by murmuring and unmistakable expressions of hostility. We were well armed certainly, but were only ten men against over a hundred.

Our camping-place was wild and picturesque, and, had it not been for the uncomfortable sensation of not quite knowing what would happen next, our stay at Gwarjak would have been pleasant enough. Even Gerome was depressed and anxious, and the Beila men and escort ill at ease. I was sorely tempted more than once to accede to Kamoo's request, strike tents and move on to Gajjar, the next village, but was restrained by the thought that such a proceeding would not only be undignified, but a source of satisfaction to my bete noire, Malak.

After a prolonged absence of four or five hours, the latter returned, together with his Wazir and about a dozen followers. A more cut-throat looking set of ruffians I have seldom seen. All wore long black-cloth robes trimmed with scarlet, and white turbans, and carried a Snider rifle and belt stuffed with cartridges slung over the left shoulder. I now noticed with some anxiety that Malak's quiet and undemonstrative manner had completely altered to one of swaggering insolence and bravado. "The chief wishes you to know he has twenty more like this," said Kamoo, pointing to Malak's villainous-looking suite. "Tell him I am very glad to hear it," was my reply, politely meant, but which seemed to unduly exasperate the King of Gwarjak. Brushing past me, he burst into the tent, followed by his men, and seated himself on my only camp-stool. Then, producing a large American revolver, he cocked it with a loud click, placed it on the ground beside him, and called for his kalyan.

Patience has limits. With the reflection that few white men would have put up with the insults I had; that "Tommy Atkins" was, after all, only three hundred miles away; and that, in the event of my death, Malak would probably be shot, if not blown from a gun, - I ordered him (through the trembling Kamoo) to instantly leave the tent with all his followers. The fire-eating chieftain was (unlike most Baluchis) a poor creature, for to my intense relief he slunk out at once, with his tail between his legs. Having then re-appropriated the camp-stool, I ordered in the escort, fixed bayonets, loaded my revolver with ostentation, and commanded my friend to re-enter alone, which he did, and, as Americans say, "quickly."

Then ensued an uncomfortable silence, interrupted by the arrival of one of my men to say that the villagers had refused to sell provisions of any kind, although eggs, milk, and rice were to be had in plenty. "I am not the king of these people," said Malak, passionately, on being remonstrated with. "Every man here is free to do as he pleases with his own." As our stores were now running uncomfortably short, this "Boycotting" system was anything but pleasant. "Will you sell us some eggs and milk?" I asked, as my unwilling guest rose to go. It was eating humble-pie with a vengeance, but hunger, like many other things, has no laws. "I am not a stall-keeper," was the answer. A request to be permitted to ascend the hill and visit the fort was met by an emphatic refusal. I then, as a last resource, inquired, through Kamoo, if my hospitable host had any objection to my walking through the village. "If you like," was the reply; "but I will not be responsible for your safety. This is not Kelat. The English are not our masters. We care nothing for them."

Notwithstanding these mysterious warnings, however, I visited the village towards sunset, alone with Gerome, fearing lest the sight of my escort should arouse the ire and suspicions of the natives. There was little to see and nothing to interest. Gwarjak is built without any attempt at order or symmetry. Many of the houses had toppled over till their roofs touched the ground, and the whole place presented an appearance of poverty and decay strangely at variance with the smiling plains of grain, rice, and tobacco around it. Not a human being was visible, for our appearance was the signal for a general stampede indoors, but the dirty, narrow streets swarmed with huge, fierce dogs, who would have attacked us but for the heavy "nagaikas" [A] with which we were armed. We were evidently cordially hated by both men and beasts! On return to camp I gave orders for a start at four the next morning. There was no object to be gained by remaining, and the natives would have been only too glad of an excuse for open attack.

The remains of an ancient city, covering a very large area, are said to exist near Gwarjak, about a mile due south of it. I could, however, discover no trace of them, although we came from that direction, and must have traversed the supposed site.

After the fatigue and anxiety of the day, I was enjoying a cigar in the bright moonlight, when a messenger from the village arrived in camp. He had a narrow escape. Not answering the challenge of the sentry for the second time, the latter was about to fire, when I ran forward and threw up his rifle, which discharged in the air. A second later, and the man would have been shot, in which case I do not suppose we should ever have seen Quetta. The message was from Malak, inviting me to a "Zigri," a kind of religious dance, taking place just outside the village. After some reflection, I decided to go. It might, of course, mean treachery, but the probability was that the chief, afraid of being reported to the Indian Government for his insolence and insubordination, wished to atone for his conduct before I left.

Under the messenger's guidance, and attended by Gerome and a guard of five men with loaded rifles, I set out. Both the Russian and myself carried and prominently displayed a brace of revolvers. A walk of ten minutes brought us to a cleared space by the river. In the centre blazed a huge bonfire, round which, in a semicircle, were squatted some two or three hundred natives, watching the twistings and contortions of half a dozen grotesque creatures with painted faces, and long, streaming hair, who, as they turned slowly round and round, varied the performance with leaps and bounds, alternately groaning, wailing, and screaming at the top of their voices.

A horn, a lute, and half a dozen tom-toms accompanied the dance. Some distance away, and surrounded by his grim-looking guard, sat Malak, who, though he did not rise to receive me, beckoned me to his side with more politeness than usual. It was a weird, strange sight. The repulsive, half-naked figures leaping round the fire, the silent, awestruck crowd of Baluchis, the wild barbaric music, and pillar of flame flashing on the dark, sullen face of Malak and his followers, was not a little impressive, especially as I was in a state of pleasing uncertainty as to the object of my host's sudden change of manner, and whether this might not be a little dramatic introduction to an attack upon our party. This was, however, evidently not my sulky friend's intention, for, as I rose to go, he actually stood up and took my hand. "At Gajjar," he said, "you will be able to get all you want, but take my advice, and get away from here early to-morrow morning. They do not like you."

Four hours after we were en route. The Zigri was still going on as we rode out of the village. Malak and his guard still sat motionless, the weird dancers and crowd of onlookers were still there, the huge bonfire blazing as brightly as ever, though the Eastern sky was lightening. As we passed within a hundred yards, I waved my hand, but the compliment was not returned. Some of the crowd looked up at the caravan; all must have seen it, but averted their faces till we had passed. I was not, on the whole, sorry to leave Gwarjak.

But one European, Colonel M - - of the Indian service, had visited Gwarjak for fifteen years prior to my visit. My road thither from Noundra has never been traversed save by natives, and it was, perhaps, more by good luck than good management that we came through successfully. The inhabitants of Gwarjak are a tribe known as the Nushirvanis, who claim to be of Persian descent. It was only at Quetta that I learnt that my friend Malak was only Viceroy of this inhospitable district. The head-quarters and residence of the Chief, one Nimrood Khan, is at Kharan (a hundred and fifty miles north-west of Gwarjak). Nimrood, who was fortunately absent, detests Europeans, and would probably have made matters even worse for us. Intermixed freely with the wild and lawless tribes of the Baluch-Afghan frontier (from which Kharan is but a few miles distant), it is scarcely to be wondered at that the Nushirvanis are inimical to Europeans, whom they are taught by their chiefs and Afghan neighbours to look upon as natural enemies.

Although we had not as yet formed a very favourable idea of Baluch hospitality, our reception at every village from here to the capital amply atoned for the rough and uncivil behaviour of the wild Nushirvanis. We were now once more on the beaten track, for though the country south of Gwarjak was, previous to our crossing it, unexplored, the journey from Kelat to Gajjar has frequently been made by Europeans during the past few years. Our reception by the natives of Gajjar (only twenty miles from Gwarjak) was a pleasant contrast to that given us at the latter place. Camp was no sooner pitched than presents of eggs, milk, rice, and tobacco were brought in, and I was cordially welcomed by the chief of the village.

Gajjar is a ramshackle, tumble-down place of about three hundred inhabitants. On a small hillock to the right of the village stands the fort, a square building of solid masonry, which, however, is now roofless, and has only three walls standing. The garrison (of six men) were lodged in a flimsy tent pitched in the centre of the ruins. Half the houses were constructed of dried mud; the remainder, as at Gwarjak, of palm leaves. The village stands in a grove of date palms, and the swarms of flies were consequently almost unendurable. We encamped close to the village well, to which, during the afternoon, many of the female population came to draw water. Two of them, bright, pleasant-featured girls of eighteen or twenty, were the best-looking specimens of the Baluch woman that I met with throughout the journey.

Towards sunset the corpse of a young man was borne past my tent and interred in a little cemetery hard by. The burial rites of the Baluchis are very similar to those of Persia. When a death occurs, mourners are sent for, and food is prepared at the deceased's house for such friends as desire to be present at the reading of prayers for the dead, while "kairats," or charitable distributions of food, are made for the benefit of the soul of the deceased. A wife, on the decease of her husband, neglects washing, and is supposed to sit lamenting by herself for not less than fifteen days. Long before this, however, her female friends come to her house and beg her to desist from weeping, bringing with them the powder of a plant called "larra." With this the widow washes her head, and then resumes her former life and occupations. If, however, by thoughtlessness or malice, her friends defer their visit, she must mourn for a much longer period alone. A curious Baluch custom is that of digging a grave much deeper for a woman than a man. They argue that woman is by nature so restless she would not remain quiet, even in death, without a larger proportion of earth over her.

In the matter of births and marriages the Baluchis, being of the Mohammedan religion, regulate their ceremonies mainly according to the Koran. Marriage is attended with great festivities. The first step is the "zang," or betrothal, which is regarded as of a very sacred nature, the final rite being known as "nikkar." On the wedding-day the bridegroom, gorgeously arrayed, and mounted on his best horse or camel, proceeds with his friends to a "ziarat," or shrine, there to implore a blessing, after which the "winnis," or marriage, is gone through by a moullah. On the birth of a child there is also much feasting. The fourth day after birth a name is given to the infant, and on the sixth an entertainment to friends. The following day the rite of circumcision ("kattam") is performed, though not always, this being sometimes postponed for a year or more. On this occasion (as at a death) large distributions of food are made to the poor.

The country between Gajjar and Jebri, which was reached next day, is bare and sterile, notwithstanding that, at the latter place, water is seldom scarce, even in the dryest seasons. The plain, which consists of loose, drifting sand, with intervals of hard, stony ground, is called Kandari. The cold here in the months of January and February is intense. We passed some curious cave-dwellings in the side of the caravan-track, in which the natives take refuge from the icy blasts that sweep across here in winter. They are formed by digging holes eight to ten feet deep. These are rudely thatched over with palm leaves, bits of stick, and plaited straw, thus forming a warm and comfortable shelter.

The Chief of Jebri, one Chabas Khan, rode out to meet me, clad in a long gown of golden thread, which, flashing in the sun, was discernible a couple of miles off. Jebri contains about four hundred inhabitants, and is a neatly built village, protected by a large mud fort, and a garrison of twenty Baluchis armed with Snider rifles. Chabas, who was very proud of his village, informed me that his rule extended over a considerable extent of country, containing a population of over 20,000. Many of his subjects were natives of Seistan, Kharan, and Shotrawak, all Afghan border districts, and gave him at times no little trouble. The Jebri fort had been attacked only a year previous to my visit, but Chabas (who I afterwards heard at Kelat is a renowned fire-eater) gave the rebels such a warm reception that there has been no outbreak since. My genial old host had himself given a good deal of trouble to the Kelat Government in his younger days, and told me with evident pride that he had led many a chupao in the good old days. The savage and predatory character of the Baluchi was formerly well exemplified in these lawless incursions, when large tracts of country were pillaged and devastated and the most unheard-of cruelties practised. Chupaos are now a thing of the past. Pottinger, who traversed this country in the last century, and had more than one unpleasant rencontre with these armed bands, thus describes one of these plundering expeditions -

"The depredators are usually mounted on camels, and furnished, according to the distance they have to go, with food, consisting of dates, goat's milk, and cheese. They also carry water in a small skin-bag, if requisite, which is often the case if the expedition is prolonged. When all is prepared the band sets off and marches incessantly till within a few miles of where the chupao is to commence, and then halts in some unfrequented spot to rest their camels. On the approach of night they mount again, and, as soon as the inhabitants of a village have retired to rest, begin their attack by burning, destroying, and carrying off whatever comes in their way. They never think of resting for one moment during the chupao, but ride on over the territory on which it is made at the rate of eighty or ninety miles a day, until they have loaded their camels with as much pillage as they can possibly remove; and as they are very expert in the management of their animals, each man on an average will have charge of ten or twelve. If practicable, they make a circuit which enables them to return by a different route. This affords a double prospect of plunder and also misleads those who pursue the robbers - a step generally taken, though with little effect, when a sufficient body of men can be collected for that purpose."

"In these desperate undertakings the predatory robbers are not always successful, and when any of them chance to fall into the hands of exasperated villagers, they are mutilated and put mercilessly to death. The fact," concludes Pottinger, "of these plundering expeditions being an institution in Baluchistan must serve to show how slight is the power wielded by the paramount rulers, and what risks to the safety of both person and property must be run by those engaged in the business of trade in such a country."

Chabas visited me towards evening, accompanied by his son, a clever-looking, bright-eyed lad about fifteen years old. Noticing that he wore a belt and buckle of the 66th Regiment, I inquired where he had procured it, and was told that it had been purchased from a Gwarjak man, who brought it down from Kharan shortly after the fatal disaster to the regiment at Maiwand. The kindly old chief now pressed my acceptance of a fine fat goat - a very acceptable gift, considering the impoverished condition of the camp larder. We then visited the fort and village, under his guidance.

Jebri and its neighbourhood are well cultivated. The system of agriculture practised in this part of Baluchistan is simple, but effective, the fields being divided off by ridges of earth and raised embankments to an accurate level. They are then further subdivided longitudinally by ridges thrown up about seven or eight paces apart. This is done for purposes of irrigation. The soil is then ploughed and manured, the former operation being generally carried on by means of bullocks. Tracts of land not irrigated by streams, but which are dependent on rain and the rivulets which come down from the hillsides after it, are called "kash-kawa," and are found scattered about the valleys here and there near the tent-encampments of the nomad tribes, who plough a piece of land, sow it, and return to gather in the crop when it is matured. The implements of husbandry in general use are a light wooden plough of primitive construction, consisting of a vertical piece bent forward at the bottom and tipped with an iron point, and a long horizontal beam, which passes forward between the pair of bullocks that draw it, and is fastened to the yoke. A harrow, consisting of a wooden board about six feet long by two wide, is also used, being dragged over the ploughed land attached to the yoke by iron chains. If found not sufficiently heavy, the driver stands upon it. A spade or shovel, exactly like its English counterpart, and a reaping-hook, or sickle, having its cutting edge furnished with minute teeth, complete the list of a Baluchi's agricultural tools.

Jebri Fort stands on a steep hillock about fifty feet in height. From here a good view was obtainable of the surrounding country. Immediately below were pretty gardens or enclosed spaces, sown in the centre with maize, wheat, and tobacco, and surrounded by plum and pomegranate trees and date palms. There is a considerable trade in the latter between here and Beila, which perhaps accounted for the myriads of flies which here, as at Gajjar, proved a source of great annoyance. In Chabas's garden were roses and other flowers, some remarkably fine vines, and a number of mulberry trees. The grounds were well and neatly laid out with paths, grass plots, and artificial streams, upon which I complimented the old man; but he would talk of nothing but his fort, which was, indeed, the only structure worthy of the name met with between Quetta and the sea. In the evening his son brought me a delicious dish of preserved apricots and cream, for which I presented him with three rupees, one of which he instantly returned. It is considered, by Baluchis, extremely unlucky to give or accept an odd number of coins.

At Jebri, for the first time, we suffered severely from cold at night, the thermometer dropping to 42 deg. Fahr. just before sunrise. The climate of Baluchistan presents extraordinary varieties, and is extremely trying to Europeans. Although at Kelat the natives suffer considerably more from cold in winter than summer heats, the hot season in the low-lying valleys and on the coast, which lasts from April till October, may be almost said to be the most severe in the world. At Kej, in Mekram, the thermometer sometimes registers 125 deg. Fahr. in the shade as early as April, while the heat in the same district during the "Khurma-Paz," or "Date-ripening," is so intense that the natives themselves dare not venture abroad in the daytime.

Notwithstanding this, even the south of Baluchistan has its cold season. Near Beila, in the month of January, the temperature frequently falls as low as 35 deg. Fahr. in the mornings, rising no higher than 65 deg. at any portion of the day. At Kelat, on the other hand, which stands 6800 feet above sea-level, the extreme maximum heat as yet recorded during the months of July and August is only 103 deg. Fahr., while the extreme minimum during the same months is as low as 48 deg. Fahr. In winter the cold is intense. Pottinger, the traveller, relates that on the 7th of February, 1810, when at Baghivana, five marches from Kelat, his water-skins were frozen into masses of ice, and seven days afterwards, at Kelat, he found the frost so intense that water froze instantly when thrown upon the ground. Bellew, a more recent traveller, in the month of January found the temperature even lower, as when at Rodinjo, thirteen miles south of Kelat, the thermometer at 7 a.m. stood at 14 deg. Fahr., while the next night, at Kelat, it fell to 8 deg. Fahr. The weather was at the time clear, sharp, and cold, the ground frozen hard all day, while snow-wreaths lay in the shelter of the walls. A detailed account of the eight days' journey from Gajjar to Kelat would weary the reader. A description of one village will suffice for all, while the country between these two places is nothing but bare, stony desert, varied by occasional ranges of low rocky hills, and considerable tracts of cultivated land surrounding the villages of Gidar, Sohrab, and Rodingo, at each of which we were well received by the natives. With the exception of a strike among our camel-drivers, which fortunately lasted only a few hours, and a dust-storm encountered a few miles from Sohrab, nothing worthy of mention occurred to break the monotony of the voyage till, on the morning of the 9th ofApril, we sighted the flat-roofed houses, mud ramparts, and towering citadel of the capital of Baluchistan.

[Footnote A: Cossack whips.]