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war, the only occupations worthy of a free son of the desert. Domestic labors fall to the women, who also pitch and strike the tents, and saddle and bring out the horses. As to agricultural labors, the ruggedness of the climate, and the too general aridity of the soil, thwart the wise efforts of the Chinese to change the Kalmuck nomad — who loves his rude and roving life into the quiet and taxable farmer. Their drink is mare's milk, which, though its alkaline taste is disagreeable to Europeans, they prefer to cow's milk. Indeed, after standing a while in clean vessels, it acquires an acid, vinous, and very agreeable taste. By allowing it to ferment a little further, it is made into a slightly spirituous liquor, called araka by the Kalmucks, and koumis in Tartar, and prevalent throughout Tartary.

Their language is sonorous, harmonious, and poetical. Their affecting romances and epic poems partake of the sombre magnificence of parts of their country. The rocks, torrents, and meteors of Ossianic poetry figure here with legends and miracles, as wild and absurd as were ever coined in the brain of a Hindoo. Their bards recite from memory, surrounded by attentive and enraptured audiences. They have a Mongolic and an Indian alphabet, the latter used in their magical incantations.



Mongols, next to the Hottentots, the dirtiest and ugliest of our race: it is bounded north-west and north by the Russian provinces of Tomsk, Yeniseisk, and Irkutsk ; south-west by Peloo and Kansoo; south by Kansoo, Eleut, and Karagol; east by Saghalien oula, the northern government of Manchooria. Much of this northern region is covered with rank and luxuriant pastures; the nomads, split into petty tribes, acknowledge subjection to China, who, however, it is said, can neither exact tribute, nor maintain garrisons here, nor prevent these tribes from warring with each other. It requires little more of any of these three provinces than abstinence from aggressive incursions upon Chinese territory. If a war threatens to be serious and extensive, however, China levies a large force, and compels the belligerents to come to terms. She also pays a small salary to the chiefs, who receive investiture from the emperor, and occasionally a wife of the royal family; but are expected to make their visits regularly, with presents, at the imperial court, that they may be duly watched. The general character, religion, and habits of the Kalkas are similar to those of the Kalmucks, already described. Like the other Mongols, they are rough, roaming, warlike; but in domestic intercourse, frank, cheerful, and hospitable. Their main pride is in the management of their horses, in which they are wonderfully dexterous. They prefer their own swift, hardy, and serviceable nags to the larger and heavier Turkish horses-high and raw-boned. They train them to stop in their fleetest career, and to face, without flinching, the fiercest beasts of the forest. These remarks, indeed, will apply to all the nomadic Mongols.

They call themselves "Four Brothers," meaning their four allied nations of Sifans, on the west frontier of China, having fifty thousand families; Songars, near Lake Balkash, with thirty thousand; the Torgots, who, after living on the steppe of Astrakan, in some seventy thousand families, returned in 1770 to their original country, on the east of Lake Saisan; and lastly, the Derbites. In addition to these nomad The Mongols proper have flat noses, small, oblique tribes, the towns of Kalmookia are inhabited by Bu- eyes, thick lips, short chins, scanty beards, large ears, charians, Chinese, stationary Kalmucks, and a mixed and black hair, which sets off their reddish-brown or people, descended from the ancient denizens of these yellow complexions. More civilized than the Kalregions. In the end of the seventeenth century, they mucks, from their long residence in China, they are had made themselves completely the ruling people, and more tractable, hospitable, and addicted to pleasure. masters of all Central Tartary, including, as we have The women are industrious, cheerful, and more proseen, both Cashgar and Khotan. Being attacked, how-lific than the Russians. Their religious books are ever, by the Mongols, their rivals, confederated with written in the language of Tangoot, or Thibet, and the whole force of the Chinese empire, they were every imak two hundred and fifty or three hundred unable to sustain the unequal contest, which ended in families has a schoolmaster. The priests enjoy great the subjection of all to China. The Mongols, though consideration. Polygamy is allowed, but uncommon. sharing this subjection, were preeminent; the Kal- They marry very young, and the women bring to their mucks, not liking to endure this double servitude, re- husbands a portion in cattle or sheep. They light moved into Asiatic Russia. The beneficence of the their fires in the middle of their tents; and in the Chinese sway, however, has enticed them back, so deserts cow-dung is used as fuel. The tents of the that more than a million now occupy their original nobility are hung with silk stuffs in the inside, and the floors covered with Persian carpets. The tents of the common people are made of a kind of felt. Tin, silver, and porcelain vessels are used in the houses of the great. In some places, small temples are erected, round which are built modern houses.


About the Lake Koko nor, the cradle of the Chinese nation, three thousand years before the Christian era, and along the sources of her two great rivers, are found Mongol tribes of the Eleut and Sifan hordes, already alluded to, as included in the province of Koko nor; south-west of these is the province of Khor katchi, also containing Mongols. Of these obscure mountain regions little is known, and we pass to a survey of Mongolia, across the province of Kansou, already described as belonging to China Proper, and stretching far to the north-west into the heart of Tartary, some miles beyond the Celestial Mountains.

MONGOLIA. The southern half of the Mongolia of our maps is occupied by Kansou, a province of China Proper; east of it is the government of the Eleut Kalmucks; east of that, the country of the Karagol, or Shara Mongols. North of these is the country of the Kalkas

There are no cities in this wide region. Karakorum, the seat of the Monggl empire, was built of earth and wood; its very site is disputed. The camp of Oorga, two hundred and twenty miles from Kiachta, has become a town; its temples, the houses of the priests, and the house of the Chinese viceroy, are the only wooden edifices; the rest are tents. Maimatchin, opposite Kiachta, is the seat of trade with Russia, and at certain stated seasons presents quite a busy scene, and a very interesting one; for here are gathered the representatives of Russia, Siberia, China, Thibet, and all Tartary, to exchange tea, porcelain, silk, cotton, rhubarb, tobacco, and fancy articles, for furs, skins,



coarse cloths, cattle, and glass. Each town is surrounded by its separate fortification, in the midst of a high plain, with lofty granite peaks, rising on every side around it. Forts built on the pinnacles of opposite mountains mark the boundaries of the two mighty empires. Maimatchin is crowded with Chinese merchants, who entertain the Russians very hospitably; but on the tolling of a bell at sunset, every Russian must hastily quit the Chinese soil.

The countries of Mongolia nearest the Chinese wall, have a climate like that of Germany; and their chiefs present themselves at the court of China as its humblest vassals. At Gehol are seen aspens, elms, hazels, and walnut trees, and on the mountains, stunted oaks and pines. This place is the summer residence of the emperor of China, and contains, in the midst of a collection of huts, a spacious palace, extensive and magnificent gardens, and some pagodas or temples.

The middle of the country, like much of that of Kalmookia, is extensively occupied by deserts. There are meadows along the banks of its rivers, however, where the small Mongolian horses wander in large droves, and the wild jiggetai comes to take his rapid meal in the pasture. Russian travellers, who have here crossed the Desert of Cobi, said to be two thousand miles in length and four hundred broad, ― occupied a month in traversing it, and describe it as covered with short, thin grass, which, however, supports vast herds of cattle, owing, perhaps, to the saline quality of the soil. There are numerous brackish springs and lakes, the water of which is so little desirable, that a single pure spring tasted like champagne. For some twenty miles beyond the wall, a shifting and sinking sand, covered with beautiful and valuable pebbles, formed itself into waves some twenty feet high, like the similar sands of the African and Arabian deserts.

When the pastures begin to fail, all the Mongol tribes strike their tents; and this takes place ten to fifteen times a year. In summer, their progress is northward, in winter southward. The flocks, men, women, and children, form a regular procession, followed by the young women singing cheering songs. The amusements of these wandering and happy tribes are horse-races, in which even the young women excel, archery, wrestling, pantomime, and songs of love adventures, performed by girls to the accompaniment of violin and flute.

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MANCHOORIA remains now to be surveyed. This the Chinese divide into three governments - that of Saghalien oula comprehends its northern two thirds, and the large island of Saghalien, and has a capital of the same name, in latitude 50°, upon the Amoor, which is navigable for steamboats fifteen hundred miles. On its south is Kara gol, a Mongol country, and the government of Kirin, with a capital of the same name, Kirin oula, in about latitude 44°. The other government, or province, is Ching king, which has a capital of the same name, formerly called Moukden, the summer residence of former emperors. This fine province, which has usually followed the fortunes of China Proper, which it resembles in careful culture, is bounded on the north-east by Kirin, on the north-west by Karagol, on the south-west by Petchelee, its gulf, and the Yellow Sea, and on the south-east by Corea, from which the Yaloo River separates it.

The Manchoos, or Mandshurs, are a rather rude people, tall and robust, with a peculiar language, of excessive smoothness and unrivalled copiousness,

especially in the nicely expressive inflections of its verbs; in which last respect it rivals the Turkish, and surpasses the classical languages.

Very different from the immense and naked plains of Tartary, the surface of Manchooria consists of rugged and broken mountain ranges, covered with thick forests, and separated by fertile valleys, whose recesses are filled with wild beasts. It presents, therefore, a picture of what Europe was in primitive times. Ginseng, the universal medicine, grows on the mountain sides. Its shores are covered with magnificent forests, whose inhabitants are few and secluded, mostly independent fishermen, though, farther inland, wheat is raised in favored spots, and oats are extensively cultivated. The very few towns are inhabited by Chinese chiefly, who are defended by Tartar garrisons. The Amoor abounds with the finest fish, especially the sturgeon, in matchless perfection. Could it become a Russian river, it would be the avenue of trade to Siberia and Mongolia, and, as it became populous and civilized, would be a valuable commercial neighbor to our Oregon and California brethren. The natives are of a mild and amiable disposition. To the north of the Amoor, they are chiefly Siberian hunters, who take vast numbers of fur-bearing animals, especially sables. The people of Saghalien Island — if it is one— more resemble the Japanese, with whom is their chief intercourse. They are mild, peaceable, and generous.

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The history of the early races of Manchooria is given in a subsequent chapter, containing the description and history of the Tungouse, apparently the aborigines of this country. The Manchoos, who appear to be a mixed race, are more robust in figure, but have less expressive countenances than the Chinese. Before the twelfth century, they subjugated the Kitans, to whom they had previously been vassals, and who inhabited Ching king; in 1115, they invaded the north of China, founding the Kin, or "Golden" dynasty. Dispossessed by the Mongols, they returned to their wild mountains, whence they issued afresh in 1640, under the name of Manchoos, to conquer Mongolia and all China, which still yields them an obedience, mingled with hatred, it is said, and interrupted by partial rebellions. They may now be deemed the most advanced in civilization of the three great nations of Central Asia, in consequence of connection with China, especially since a late emperor ordered the best Chinese books to be translated into the Manchoo. This, the most perfect and learned of the Tartar idioms, is said to resemble the Indo-Germanic family of tongues, and may be the one destined by divine Providence to introduce the best of our European ideas to the hundreds of millions of China — a glorious enterprise, which might be deemed hopeless through the clumsy, unplastic, and objective Chinese language.

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posed almost entirely of tribes called Indo-Germans, | one hundred and twenty thousand families, six hundred Alan-Goths, or the Blond Races, who spoke lan- and thirty thousand individuals, and one hundred and guages most of whose roots are still found in the eighty-eight thousand eight hundred soldiers. They Sanscrit, the Persian, the Teutonic, Slavic, and other seem to have attained a degree of civilization; their idioms belonging to the same stock. Already, at two great generals were called Daroo. a very remote period, these people had crossed the Don, and extended themselves to the northern banks of the Danube. They formed several nations which it is no longer possible properly to distinguish, one from another. Tribes of this same race were anciently spread as far as the confines of China, and north to the Altai Mountains; they were dispersed among the Turkish and Thibetan hordes. The Parthians, Bactrians, Sogdians, Kharasmians, Getæ, Massagetæ, Alans, Aorses, Roxolans, Jazyges, and a great many others, all belonged to this grand stock.

Some feeble historical indications, a comparison of languages, ancient traditions concealed in the Hindoo mythology, and even some physiological data as to the tribes of East Asia, give rise to the presumption that the centre of this part of the world was occupied, at a very remote epoch, by the ancestors of all the IndoGermanic people. An event whose causes we know not, dispersed this race toward the south, toward the west, and even toward the east and the north.

One of these nations, speaking Sanscrit, descended the Himmaleh, spread over the plains of Hindostan, whence it chased the Malay and Negro races, or blended with them, and finished its conquests with Ceylon. Another portion, going west, seems to have followed the Jihon and the Sir, spread itself thence to the south-west, in Persia, and on the north-west toward the Volga and Don, whence it entered Europe. These migrations appear to have been several times repeated, and at epochs quite distant one from another; at least, this is the best way of explaining the diversity apparent among the nations and languages called Indo-German. Their eastern migration is evident from the existence of a blond, or fair-haired people, with blue eyes, -the Oosun—which, in the third century before the Christian era, dwelt on the confines of China. It may be presumed also, from the great number of IndoGermanic roots which are met with in the Turkish and Mongol idioms, and still more in the Tungouse and Manchoo; which latter is like German. There exist even now, also, among the Manchoos, near the Soongari and the Oosoori tribes, a great number of individuals with blond hair and blue eyes.

As to the northern migration of this same race, we find a people of similar traits dwelling, even down to a very recent epoch, upon the upper Irtish, Obi, and Yenisei rivers. These tribes became blended, at a later date, with a Turkish nation, forming the Kirghis, among whom blue or green eyes and red hair are not


The Oosun are first noticed in the third century B. C., as commingled with the Yue tchi, on the northwestern confines of China Proper. They differed entirely from their neighbors in personal appearance, and Chinese writers describe them as having blue eyes, a red beard, and much resembling the species of large ape, "from which they descend." When the Yue tchi were driven from this region, (Kan tcheoo, Sou tcheoo, and Cha tcheoo,) by the Hioong noo, in 165 B. C., the Oosun followed them to their new residence in Soongaria, pushed them westward, and took their country. Their chief lived in the town of Redvale, on Red or Salt Lake, south of Lake Balkash. They counted

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In this country formerly lived the Sai, of the same race. It is a beautiful plain, covered with excellent pasture for cattle, the chief wealth of these nomads. The climate was cold, and rains frequent; their mountains were covered with firs and larches. Their manners and customs were similar to those of the Hioong, noo; they raised many horses, of which a rich man among them would have four or five thousand. It was a hard, wicked people, faithless and inclined to pillage. This character gave it a great ascendency over its neighbors. Chinese history speaks of their princes down to the year 2 B. C. In the fourth century A. D., the Sian pi drove them from their country towards the west and north-west, a part moved into the region of the upper Jaxartes and Transoxiana, and a part into the south part of the Kirghis steppe, near the Irtish. In 619, they became subject to the Turks, with whom they seem to have blended.

Cashgar was also inhabited by a blue-eyed and fairhaired nation. It produced grains, rice, red sugar cane peculiar to Central Asia, cotton, silk, iron, copper, and orpiment. After being tributary to the Hioong noo, it was subjected to China nearly a hundred years B. C. About A. D. 120, the Yue tchi deposed its king: his subjects embraced Buddhism. The king wore on his cap a golden lion, which was changed every year. When it submitted to the ancient Turks, Cashgar counted twelve great and some dozens of small cities. In the seventh century, it sent tribute to China; in 677, was invaded by the Thibetans, and remained under them till near the middle of the tenth century, when it became again tributary to China.


The Houte, or Khoute, perhaps a detached tribe of Goths, was to the north-east of Sogdiana, and west of the Oosun country. The people were nomadic, had excellent horses, and counted two thousand soldiers. The country abounded in the zibeline martens. They were conquered by the Hioong noo, in 177 B. C. In the first half of the third century A. D., the Chinese had some political dealings with them. Another blond or red nation with blue eyes was the Ting ling, "ancients,"" elders," - north of the Oosun and Sogdiana, and touching the west shore of Lake Baikal. Three centuries before the Christian era, they were reduced by the Hioong noo; with whom, in 65 B. C., they began a three years' war. In the latter half of the second century B. C., a part of the Ting ling, living on the borders of the Obi and Irtish, were conquered by the Sian pi, but did not long submit. Since A. D. 507, when the Jooi jooi took back from them their own country, the Ting ling are often named in Chinese history. In the course of centuries, they became insensibly merged in the Kirghis.

The Kian kuen,-called, later, Hakas, and finally Ki li ki szu, the Chinese way of pronouncing the word,

or Kirghis, were a tall race, with red hair, white face, and the pupil of the eye green. They were found on the upper course of the Yenisei, and east of it, till it meets the Angara. As before remarked, their tribes were mingled with those of the Ting ling. Black hair was considered among them as of ill omen; and black eyes indicated the descendants of Li ling, a Chinese general, from whom their kings originated, who, in 97

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B. C., having joined the Hioong noo, was by them | getæ, with whom Cyrus, king of Persia, fought, and made king of the Kian kuen. They numbered some were found in his day, 530 B. C., round two thirds hundreds of thousands, out of whom twenty-four thou- of Lake Aral, to the Caspian. Their country was sand chosen troops could be drawn. two hundred and fifty to three hundred miles north-west of Sogdiana, near a great marsh, without banks," as the Chinese describe it, probably the Caspian Sea, which once united with Lake Aral, as surmised in the geographical notices in a previous page. They numbered a hundred thousand archers, and resembled, in manners, customs, and dress, the people of Sogdiana. In the first and second century of our era, the Yan thsai were named A-lan-na: they were then subject to the Sogdians, and lived in towns. Their climate was hot, and not variable: many and lofty pines were found in their country, and the white grass.

Few males, but many females, were born among them. The nation was proud and haughty; the men were very courageous: they tattooed figures upon their hands; and the women marked their necks after marriage : both sexes wore earrings. Men and women lived undistinguished together, and hence arose much libertinism. Their country was full of marshes in summer, and covered with snow in winter. The cold continued for a long time, so that the great rivers froze to one half their depth.*

As the Chinese say that the Hakas, or ancient Kirghis, had the same language as the Turks, and also that they intermarried with the Turks, it happened, doubtless, as in many other cases, that this Indo-Germanic nation lost its mother tongue, and adopted the Turkish or Eastern Ouigoor. Like all the Turkish race, like the Mongols, Manchoos, Japanese, and Thibetans, the Hakas had a cycle of twelve years, and each year bore the name of an animal; thus-rat, ox, tiger, hare, dragon, serpent, horse, sheep, ape, hen, dog,


The Hakas country was of great extent. In A. D. 648, having learned that the Hoei he had submitted to China, they also sent ambassadors with tribute, and the chief himself went and was well received in China. The emperor rated his as a jurisdiction of the first order, created him commandant of the guards on the left, and placed him under a Chinese generalissimo, giving him the office of provincial governor. Thus the Chinese ranged under their sway most of the principalities of Middle Asia. In 709, the emperor received presents from the Hakas, remarking that they were his relations, alluding to Li ling, before mentioned. In 759, they were entirely defeated by the Hoei hoo, and cut off from China. They then received the name Hakas- yellow or red face from their conquerors. In 846, they mastered the Hoei hoo empire, but not long after the Khotan drove them back into political nullity, and they are not spoken of again in history till, under the name of Kirghis, they submitted to Zingis Khan.

The Alans are called Yan thsai by the Chinese, when they first became acquainted with them, at the time they sent a political expedition into the west, about 120 B. C. They are the same as the Massa

East of the Hakas were three Turkish hordes, who had many excellent horses, and lived in birch bark huts. They had sleds, which they pushed with great swiftness on the ice by means of a crooked stick, one shove with which would send them a hundred paces. They pillaged by night, and often kidnapped and enslaved the Hakas.

Of the Hakas we are told, that they lived on horse flesh and mare's milk, the king alone eating food made of flour and rice. Their musical instruments were the transverse flute, drum, Chinese organ, straight flute, cymbals, and little bells. They amused themselves with combats of animals, and ropedancing. Their rich people were very fond of garments adorned with marten skins. The lower class were clothed in skins, and went bareheaded; the king wore a cap of marten fur in winter, in summer a pointed one of gold filagree; his subjects wore caps of white felt, and a sabre, with a hone to sharpen it, at their belts; the women clothed themselves in cloth, serge, brocade, and other silk tissues, bought of Arab merchants, who came to Koutsk, east by north of Cashgar, and to Ooroomtsi, in latitude 444, on the cast-north-east.

Their chief had his camp in the Blue or Little Altai Mountains, and it was surrounded with palisades. His tents were

In the first half of the third century, the Chinese call them A lan, and they then bordered on the Roman empire upon their west; that is, they had already extended to the Eastern Caucasus. Their country was rich in domestic animals and martens. The people were nomadic, lived near a salt and marshy sea, and had thrown off the yoke of the Sogdians. From 435 to 480, they were called Sout, and had frequent relations with the emperors of Northern China. They had excellent horses, cattle, sheep, and, with other kinds of fruits, a great quantity of raisins, with which they made a delicious wine: they harvested crops of a cereal plant, called ta ho—perhaps the djogan widely spread in Central Asia - which grew one Chinese fathom high. The country was divided into several petty principalities, and counted more than four hundred walled towns. Anciently, say the Chinese historians, the Hioong noo killed their king and took the country. Formerly the Sout merchants carried on a large commerce with Liang, a Chinese kingdom in the west of Chensi, but having committed violent acts, they were treated as banditti, and arrested, but redeemed in 452–465. After 565, the Chinese do not mention them.

A Greek writer, in the last years of Augustus, the Roman emperor, first of the western writers, mentions the Alains. He calls them powerful, and counts the number of their horses. They then lived on the Sea of Azof and Black Sea, between the Don and the Dnieper, in the ancient country of the Roxolans and Jazyges, whom they pushed more to the west. There was an eastern branch, which remained east of the Volga and north of the Caspian, much more powerful than the others, and enriched by a large comof felt, and larger than those of his people. His subjects paid him taxes in furs of the marten and gray squirrel. Six ranks of officers administered his government. They had letters resembling the Runic, indicating intercourse between Central Asia and Northern Europe; and sent, in the ninth century, for Chinese books and calendars. These facts, and their luxury, show more civilization than we should expect.

The Hakas offered sacrifices to the genii who preside over rivers and prairies. In funerals they went thrice round the corpse, howling, and then burnt it: the bones were kept for a year, and then buried; and friends went from time to time, to weep for the dead, upon their graves. Nuptial presents consisted in horses and sheep; sometimes by the hundreds and thousands. Their laws were extremely severe, and death was the ordinary punishment. If a robber's father was living, the head of his executed son was hung round his neck for life. In winter, they covered their huts with bark. Their tillage furnished millet, wheat, and barley: they ground their meal and flour with a hand mill, or a pestle and mortar; and made cakes and spirits. Horses were their chief wealth, and they had them very large and strong: they had also numerous camels, sheep, fat-tailed sheep, and cattle.


merce.* In fact, they stretched, in time, from the Don to the Jaxartes.

In the second century, the Alans, living in the vast countries between the Don and the Dnieper, attacked the Romans in the neighborhood of the Danube, probably through the plains of Moldavia, for the other roads. were shut and well guarded. In the third century, the Goths began to spread themselves in the Alan country being of the same stock, they allied themselves with the Alans, and accompanied them on their warlike expeditions. After the fall of the Gothic empire, a part of the Alans made common cause with the Vandals, and, followed them, in their western migrations, as far as into Spain and Africa, where, after a while, the two people could not be distinguished.

Meanwhile the great mass of the Alans retired to the east of the Don, where it was increased by the union with it of several nations, whose names disappear in the sequel. Thus reënforced, the Alans had their flying encampments in the country between the Caspian Sea and the Sea of Azof, and as far as the Bosphorus, and, like their ancestors, the Massagetæ, commenced invading the northern provinces of the Persian empire. The first mention of the Asiatic Alans is under Vespasian; they then came from Hyrcania, and entered Media, by the Caspian gates. Under Tiberius, they are known as inhabitants of Eastern Caucasus: thence they ceased not to make their forays into Persia, whose monarch asked Vespasian's help against them.

Under Hadrian they devastated the Roman provinces, and the prefect of Cappadocia wrote a memoir on the tactics to be observed against the Alans. Albania is named from them, and the Albanians are the same people, and their name is the same; to Albania alone can be applied what the Chinese say of their grains, wines, the fertility of their country, and its numerous walled towns. The Ossetes of Caucasus, A. D. 948, are the same people, and the Arab writers call the Caucasian pass of Dairan, "the Alan gate."

The Alans were the first nation exposed to the fury of the Hunnic invasion, towards the end of the fourth century they were defeated, but soon joined their invaders with good will, and the two nations turned their arms against the Goths, who succumbed. Then

* In the latter half of the fourth century, the historian, Ammianus Marcellinus, tells us that the Sauromates dwelt between the Danube and Don, beyond which are the Alains -a name gradually adopted from their conquerors by many of the conquered tribes. Among them are the Neures, inhabiting the middle of the land, and crowded by the ice of the north; next the Vidimes and warlike Gelons, savages-clothing themselves and caparisoning their horses with skins flayed from their enemies; then the Agathyrses, who paint the body and hair blue, with smaller or larger spots, according to their class; next the Melanchlenes and Anthropophagi, who live on human flesh, and hence all their neighbors keep at a distance. On the other side, eastwardly, are the Alains, who spread among numerous Asiatic nations, even to the Ganges. In fact, these nomadic nations overran a vast space. In the course of time, all these people have received the name of Alains, or Alans, beause they are similar in manners, ferocity, and mode of warfare.

Describing them further, he says, they have neither houses nor the use of the plough. They live on flesh and many kinds of food made of milk. They are continually seated on wagons covered with mats made of bark. When they arrive where there is grass, they halt, and arrange their wagons in a circle; they then take their repast like wild beasts. They roll about these wagons like movable cities, for they contain all their possessions; it is in these that both men and women dwell; their children are born, nursed, and bred up in them, for they are their perpetual abode; and wherever

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nothing could resist the impetuosity with which the Huns took possession of half Europe. Since this epoch, history knows no other Alans than those who, settled in the Caucasus, have ceased to play a conspicuous part in the affairs of nations.

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In Central Asia, the ancient Scythia beyond the Imaus· the desert has now enlarged its bounds at the expense of countries where were anciently populous cities and a happy people; where once were plains smiling with a rich harvest, nothing now is seen but the hunter chasing the wild camel over the sands of the wilderness. The first inhabitants of Central Asia known to history were of the Indo-Germanic stock. The earliest notice of this blond race, in these regions, is at Khotan. In this secluded country, the Sanscrit, or a cognate language, was spoken previous to the Christian era: so that here appears to have been a Hindoo colony. The Buddhist religion even then flourished here, and probably spread hence among the nomads of Asia.

The environs of Khotan were covered with convents, where the Buddhists of the East went to search the sacred books and traditions of their creed, long before this religion penetrated into Thibet. It was principally by Cashmere that the inhabitants of Khotan kept up their intercourse with India; they had imitated the letters, laws, and literature of this country. This imitation had polished them at a very early date, and had modified their manners and language, which differed from that of their neighbors. They honored Buddha to such a degree, and were so attached to his law, that they had more than a hundred convents, in which lived more than five thousand monks: all were devoted to the study of their law and their mysteries.

The first relations that the Chinese had with Khotan, were at the end of the second century B. C. The king of the country then resided in the western city; this numbered twenty-three hundred houses, and nineteen thousand three hundred people, and but twentyfour hundred select troops. There was a prime minister, a general of the right wing, and one of the left, two captains of cavalry, a commandant of the western, and one of the eastern city. Khotan has always been celebrated for the great quantity of Oriental jade which they go, they regard the wagon as the house in which they were born, their birthplace. On a march, they cause their larger animals and sheep to precede the wagons; but they pay the most particular attention to their horses, for they prefer these before every thing. With them the country is always verdant, and sprinkled with groves and fruit trees; so that they have no need to carry forage and provisions: this is caused by the humidity of the soil, and the great number of rivers which water it.

All are under military discipline, and are good soldiers. Almost all are handsome and tall. They have hair rather blond; their eyes, though terrible, have sweetness. Being lightly armed, they march rapidly. They are like the Huns, but less rude and better clothed. They enact their robberies on the Black Sea, as well as on the confines of Armenia and Media.

The perils of war have as great a charm for the Alans, as repose for men of a tranquil character. He who dies in battle is deemed happy; he who dies by age or accident is despised and insulted. A man slain in battle is their most glorious object of veneration. They keep as trophies the scalps of their enemies, and make of their skins harness for their horses. They have neither temples nor holy places, but fix a naked sword in the ground, and worship it. They predict the future by willow rods. Anciently they knew no servitude: all were deemed of noble blood. They elect for judges those who have made themselves famous in war.

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