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0158 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 158 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000189
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106   IN THE BAMPÛR BASIN   [Chap. IV, Sec. 1]

To the south of the fort we found some old trees surviving within what had been a walled garden, now used for cultivation. Adjoining this were some newly built quarters for the commandant of the small garrison, and at a short distance beyond lay a cluster of some fifty mat-huts tenanted by Balûch cultivators and followers. Close by, the mud-built dwellings of two Hindu traders represented the bazar of this local centre. Camp was pitched in the old garden, the shade of its few trees being very welcome; for here in the basin, at an elevation of only about 1,800 feet, the heat of the approaching spring already began to make itself felt. Later on in the season the climate of Bampûr with its torrid heat and malaria was said to tell severely on the health of the Persian soldiers.

A first rapid inspection made on the day of our arrival, February 26th, had sufficed to show me that the waste ground to the west of the fort was covered with pottery, both on the level ground and on the mounds ( Fig. 35) , which, as seen in Plan 10, extend over it for a distance of some 300 yards. The variety of the ceramic types to be picked up on the surface indicated prolonged occupation, reaching down to comparatively late times. But some fragments of fine greyish ware painted with animal figures clearly suggested some prehistoric deposits lower down. In order to reach these without too great expenditure of time, excavation was started next morning by a trial trench, A, 75 feet long and 4 feet wide, cut across the neck which connects the southernmost mound, about

23 feet high, with its neighbour. The neck in the middle rose to a height of 12 feet above the adjacent level ground. This trench was subsequently extended for

24 feet to the east (B), and from its end a cross (C) trench dug to the south.

Remains of human bodies, laid out in the orthodox fashion, were unearthed down to a level of about 10 feet from the ground, and these, together with graves subsequently struck in the trenches B and C, showed that the mound had been used at one time for Muhammadan burials. Besides glazed potsherds and some fragments of querns, there turned up in this top layer some coarse jars of small size, and many fragments of plain pottery bearing a white slip. On a level of 8-9 feet there appeared pieces of pottery painted with poorly drawn patterns in black or red over a red or pink ground. The designs, consisting chiefly of hachures, wave lines and lozenges, as seen in Barn. 6, 205, 206 a, b, 223 (Pls. VIII, IX) , resemble those found on the `late prehistoric' ware of British Balûchistân. Two fragments of a glass bangle, 237, found at 8 feet level, deserve notice.

The immediately succeeding layer, on a level of 6-7 feet, yielded a great deal of interesting ceramic ware. Here were found several small jars with diminutive bases (Bam. 22, 308), not unlike those found at Periâno-ghundai;1 1 Cf. N. Bali-whist-du Tour, Pl. VII.