Bernier, François, Travels in the Mogul Empire A.D. 1656-1668

(Westminster, Eng. :  Constable,  1891.)



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purpose of irrigating and enriching the land. They could
indeed be made with as much facility in the one countiy
as in the other, the Ganges and other rivers of Hindoustan
increasing, the same as the Nile, in summer in consequence
of the rains which regularly fall at that season. There is
this diff'erence between the two countries : that in Egypt
no rain is known, neither in summer nor scarcely at any
other time, excepting occasionally in a small quantity to¬
ward the sea. It is only near the source of the Nik, in
Ethiopia, that rain falls; whereas throughout the Indies it
rains periodically in the countries through which the rivers
flow. It should be observed, however, that this is not the
case universally; for in the kingdom of Scijmdy, toward the
Persian Gulf, where the mouth of the Indus is situated, there
are years during which no rain whatever falls, although the
Indus be greatly swollen. The fields are then irrigated,
as in Egypt, by means of kalis} or artificial channels.

In regard to the wish expressed by Monsieur Thevenot
that I should send you a detailed narration of my Adven¬
tures in the Red Sea, at Suez, Tor, Mount Sinai, Gidda (in
that pretended holy land of Mahomet, half a day's jour¬
ney from Meca), in the island of Kaniarane and at Lou-
haya} together with all the information which I obtained
at Moka concerning the Kingdom of Ethiopia, and the best
route for entering therein, it is my intention to gratify
that wish when I have had time to put in order, God
helping me, my Papers.

! Khal, the name in Bengal for an inlet of the sea or of a large
river, a creek ; the water being baled from the khal, and then dis¬
tributed over the fields by means of small artificial channels.

' Kameran, now a British possession, off ihc coast of Ar<abia, in the
same latitude as Annesley Bay in Abyssinia. Loheia, a town on the
mainland of Arabia, about 20 miles to the north of the island of

  Page 454