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0080 Archaeological Reconnaissances in North-Western India and South-Eastern Īrān : vol.1
Archaeological Reconnaissances in North-Western India and South-Eastern Īrān : vol.1 / Page 80 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000189
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since medieval times to have held a large portion of the Salt Range. Bdghànwàla might well have provided a very suitable place of residence in times of peace for whoever held charge of Nandana, that ancient gate of the Salt Range.

Interesting archaeological evidence of this is furnished by the conspicuous ruin known as `Shâhi Darwâza' ( `The Royal Gate' ), situated by the right bank of the stream of Bâghanwâla and about half a mile below the main portion of the village. It consists of a gateway with porch, central domed chamber, . and two pentagonal apses, one on either side of the central chamber, the whole built with carefully dressed slabs of red sandstone. The square structure measures 30 feet outside and the entrance under the porch 12 feet 8 inches in width, the arch over the latter being 15 feet in height. The dome over the central chamber, mostly fallen, and the vaulting over the apses are constructed with horizontal courses, while the porch and inner gate on both sides of the chamber are surmounted by true arches. The mixture of the two systems of vaulting seems to point to construction in Muhammadan times.

No side walls adjoin the structure. As tradition also asserts, it seems to have served as the ornamental gateway to a garden after the fashion of bârandaris found at gardens of the Mughal period. Stairs at the back give access to the roof. The construction of this gateway and of the garden is ascribed to a Raja Tôrhind in the account of local traditions which Ghazan Khân, head of the Baghânwàla family of Janjûas, had recorded for me. This traditional record does not pretend to reach back farther than the eighth century of the Muhammadan era, and does not furnish any reliable data as regards the earlier history of Nandana.

Leaving Baghanwala and crossing below it the alluvial plain, well cultivated almost throughout, we come after about 9 miles to the large village of Haranpur, and beyond it to the bank of the Jhelum. The river flows here, as already mentioned, in a single well-defined bed, and it deserves to be noted that the width of this bed, half a mile, corresponds closely to the four stadia which Curtius records as the breadth of the river at the point where Poros guarded the passage and where Alexander's main camp stood facing that of his adversary.' I have before had occasion to point out that the road distance between the river bank here and Jalâlpur corresponds exactly to the 17-i miles recorded by Arrian between Alexander's camp and the place where he ultimately crossed the Hydaspes. It only remains to add that, as the maps show, the present road between Haranpur and Jalâlpur runs at such a distance from the river as would have effectively screened the final move of Alexander's force from the enemy's observation, a point which Arrian specially mentions.

7 Cf. Curtius, Histor. viii. xiii. 8.