936 RUINED SITES WITHIN THE OASIS OF PERSIAN SISTAN [Chap.XXIX
keystone. The whole looked as if the mason had tried to apply a new style of vaulting but did not fully understand its principle.
Site of About one mile to the NW. of the last-named site there rises above the neighbouring ground
Ghala a low mound known as Ghala-tappa. Its top bears a double circumvallation of stamped clay, of
oval shape and badly decayed. The interior measures about 34o feet by 240. The outer enclosure rises about io feet above the present level of the fields near by and measures from 52 to 64 feet across ; the inner rampart is about i6 feet higher and varies from 24 to 28 feet in thickness. The far-advanced decay suggests that this is an ancient site, and the abundance of pottery debris, ribbed and plain, of the same type as prevails at Ghâgha-shahr fully supports this conclusion. The List below also includes specimens of glazed ware and of pieces decorated with simple designs incised or raised, both types far less frequent.
From my camp at the small village of Kâsimâbâd, which has given its name to the Minâr
Muham above described, I paid short visits in succession to a series of ruins scattered in groups to the north
madan and north-west. They occupy ground slightly raised above the level which is reached by the
inundations of the Rûd-i-Pariûn on the east and by the rare floods that occasionally fill the old bed of the Rûd-i-Nâseru on the west, and to this fact they obviously owe their preservation. They all belong to the Muhammadan period, as had already been correctly recognized by Mr. Tate, who briefly refers to them.9 The remains, which are mainly those of old mansions, fortified dwellings, or windmills, are so numerous and extend over so wide an area that a detailed survey would have required far more time than it was possible for me to spare. I shall therefore have to content myself with short notes on their position and general features, and an indication of such observations as have a bearing on their probable date.
From a point about i miles beyond Ghala-tappa lines of ruined dwellings stretch for more
dwellings than half a mile northward, as far as the extensive graveyards that cluster around the Ziârat of
near Bibi- Bibi-döst. The ground here and at the other sites to be mentioned in this vicinity is protected from döst.
wind-erosion by abundant scrub. Yet the ruins all show decay more advanced than that observed at Zâhidân. Many of them are very massively built and comprise tower-like structures evidently intended to assure safety in case of disturbances (Fig. 497). As far as my examination extended, I saw only vaults built in the same fashion as first observed at Ghâgha-shahr, with bricks set on edge along the curve of the vaulting. The indication thus furnished of a date somewhat earlier than that of Zâhidân finds support in what I noted of the potsherds. By the side of the abundance of plain glazed fragments in bright greens and .blues, pieces decorated with painted and glazed patterns such as abound at Zâhidân seemed very rare. Plain ` ribbed ' ware was represented, but not as plentiful as at Ghagha-shahr. The size of the bricks was the same as in the ruined structures adjoining the Mil-i-Kâsimâbâd. In one ruined hall the remains of squinches showed the same fashion of vaulting as seen in the entrance hall, Gha. ii, at Ghâgha-shahr ; the side walls are decorated with arched niches formed by overlapping brick courses.
Ruins near Proceeding about 5 miles to the north and crossing several ` Shelas' or narrow beds filled by
Rindän. the Rûd-i-Pariûn at flood time, we reached the low mound of Rindän, presenting traces of former
occupation in the shape of pottery debris.. To the east of it extends a narrow belt of badly decayed ruins for over 3 miles from SE. to NW., evidently aligned on an old canal which lay parallel to the present beds of the Rûd-i-Pariûn on either side of this area. The most striking of these ruins are the very massive remains of a Chigini or windmill which still rise to close on 40 feet in height. Its type is illustrated by another and probably later ruin of a windmill shown in Fig. 498. The