66 OLD SITES IN THE SALT RANGE AND SHAHPUR DISTRICT [Chap. II
Here, too, the pottery ornamented in colour or relief like the ribbed fragment (Kuk. 4, Pl. I0 exhibited types agreeing with those noted at Bahûr. As an interesting find may be specially noted a well-modelled spout from a vessel, in the shape of a grotesque animal with eyes, ears, and whiskers carefully indicated (Kuk. 5; Pl. II) . A large burnt brick exposed in situ measured 16 x l0. x 3 inches. A collection of forty-seven much-corroded copper coins was brought by a villager as having been found in a small pot dug up at the site. It has been determined by Mr. J. Allan as comprising issues of the Kushan-Sasanian type, two legible coins being of Hormizd as Governor under Shâpur I (A. D. 264-72) . The general impression I derived from the examination of the sites in the vicinity of Sahiwâl was that this tract, owing to the ease with which irrigation could be secured here by means of seasonal inundation canals from the Jhelum, must have enjoyed special fertility and supported a considerable settled population since early times. The rest of the lower Chaj Doâb towards the Chenab was, until the recent construction of the Lower Jhelum Canal, a jungle-covered waste frequented only by semi-nomadic herdsmen—and cattle thieves.
On December 19th we left Sahiwâl for the right bank of the Jhelum. Along this section of its course the river forms the north-eastern boundary of the great sandy area of the Thal, part of the Sindsâgar Doâb stretching away to the Indus. Proceeding to the north-west across well-cultivated ground liable to inundation at times of great floods, we forded after 5 miles the much-shrunk river to the village of Lai Husain. It was of interest to note that here, as also about Sahiwâl, most of the old cultivated land is owned by families of Balûch origin, belonging
to that virile race which has pushed its way up the Indus since the late Middle Ages. It represents the latest foreign invasion from the south-west. The
mound to the north-west of the village about which I had been told at Shâhpur
proved a large one, measuring about 550 yards from the north-west to southeast and about half that across. But the plentiful potsherds, showing only simple
painted designs and rarely coarse relief ornamentation ( see Lal. H. 3,5; Pls. I, II), indicated occupation not earlier than the Muhammadan period. With this conclusion agreed numerous pottery lids of modern shape found on the mound, and the Muhammadan copper coins which were brought to us by the Balûch headman of the village.
A five miles' ride along the narrow but fertile riverine belt brought us thence to Girôt. Adjoining the village on the south-west is debris-strewn ground
stretching away for half a mile to an old mosque of some size, said to date from Akbar's time. Near it is found a temple of Krishna frequented by scidhus, and a place of pilgrimage for Hindus. The pottery remains proved of the same type as at Lâl Husain, belonging to the Muhammadan period.