88 EXPLORATIONS IN PERSIAN MAKRAN [Chap. III
steep slope to the north in a less well-preserved condition. From the point marked with the height of 324 feet its eastward continuation was subsequently traced by the Surveyor up to a point where it ends on the edge of a very precipitous rock face overlooking the T ïz valley. Similarly he was able to trace the connexion of this wall line southward from the ravine to where near the 320 feet mark it abuts on the previously noted defensive line near the coast. As the parapet of the wall passed in the ravine faces east it is clear that this wall represents a secondary fortified line intended, perhaps, to reduce the total length of the defences to be watched and manned.
That these lines of wall were meant to ward off an attack on Tiz from the side of Châhbâr is evident from their position. It is equally certain that so extensive a system of defence could not have been planned without a comparatively large population such as would be needed to construct and man it. That this was available in Tiz at a certain medieval period is proved by the extent of the ground over which the remains to be described presently were traced. No local tradition exists as to the construction of these fortifications. Nor could I learn anything about the T ïz valley having been protected in other directions by similar defences. The very narrow entrance to it from the seashore ( Fig. 25 ) provided adequate protection on that side, and the very broken nature of the hills both to the north and east may have rendered attack from those directions unlikely.
The track to Tiz, beyond the point where the wall in the ravine is passed, runs for about a mile along a rocky plateau. From here much-decayed remains of stone-built dwellings could be sighted on the top of the precipitous headland marked as Tiz Point on the map. From the edge of the plateau the track descends along steep cliffs into the bottom of the T ïz valley, where our camp was pitched near a tiny plantation with a couple of Banyan trees. Tiz boasts of a few more small clumps of trees and a limited amount of scrub. It also has some wells of fairly good water in the torrent bed which descends from the east. No wonder that to the traveller along this desolate coast as well as to the few officials and traders exiled to Châhbâr the small village of Tiz presents itself as a veritable oasis.
The valley of Tiz debouches towards the sea through a short narrow defile which, where it adjoins the shore of the bay, measures only some 120 yards across. Above this defile there rises on the south a small hill with steep slopes which completely commands both the foreshore and the defile ( Fig. 25 ) . Together with the precipitous head of the rugged hill chain, enclosing the valley on the north and rising to about 300 feet, it effectively guards the approach to the valley from the side of the sea. The hill to the south now bears a