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tured to leave their fastnesses; and it seemed likely that, in spite of the difficulties opposed by the differences of their religions, the disunited Munders would shortly fall an easy prey to the victorious and one-minded Sikhs. One man alone prevented this. As his physical resources and apparent means of resistance grew less, the courage, the moral influence, and it may almost be said, the actual strength of Futteh Khan increased. Punjtar is a cluster of five small villages, not containing altogether 500 houses, situated at the upper extremity of a valley, which opens into the Sum. It is a place of no strength whatever, not even being surrounded by a wall, and the road to it is open and practicable for guns; but such was the terror inspired by the name of its chief, that for many years it remained the bugbear of the Sikhs, and their largest armies never ventured to approach it. At last, a force of, it is said, 15,000 men with guns, and under an European officer, ascended the valley. The inhabitants were amused with proposals for an accommodation, and during the night, guns having secretly been conveyed to the top of a hill which commands the place, an attack was made on the unfortified little villages. Of the few Punjtaris thus taken by surprise, the greater number hastened to place their families out of reach of the fury of the Sikhs; but all those not encumbered with wives and children, some 200 or 300 only, with Futteh Khan and the Moullas at their head, unappalled by the overpowering masses of the enemy, made a stand, and maintained an unequal fight for many hours. Futteh Khan himself swore not to retreat, and was at last carried off the field by force in the arms of his soldiers. The Sikhs destroyed the principal village and mosque, but retreated the next day, lest the Booneeris should be down upon them; nor have they since revisited Punjtar. Futteh Khan made a vow to pray in the open air till he had burned some house of images, and shortly afterwards, with a few followers, in pursuance of his vow, he crossed the river, attacked a Sikh town, and levelled its Dhurmsalla with the ground.
Runjeet Singh was fully aware of the importance of conciliating an enemy so spirited and implacable. He offered Futteh Khan a jagheer of three lacs, and to support him as Khan of all the Eusofzyes, if he would only nominally acknowledge himself his subject, by sending him a hawk or two, or a horse as a tribute. Most of the Khan's friends, and even the Moullas, recommended not that he should degrade himself into a pensioner of the infidel, but that he should send a horse to the Maharaja as an exemption from the annoyances and anxieties to which the vicinity of the Sikh troops exposed them: but the Khan was inflexible: with his character, he would have lost his power. "Horses and hawks," he wrote back," are to be found with rich nobles at the courts of kings; I, a poor Zemindar, have nothing of the kind; but I can send you a fat cow if you please."
Futteh Khan left several children, but the three eldest (who are by one mother) alone claim notice.
The first, Mokurrib Khan, the present chief, was on bad terms with his father, and for eight years before the death of the latter, had lived apart from him. The second, Alum Khan, is a good-looking, well-disposed, intelligent lad, under twenty years of age, and was the favourite of his father, who, a little before his death, sounded his friends as to the possibility of setting aside in his favour the claims of Mokurrib Khan to the succession. He was checked by the honest bluntness of his Cazi, who exclaimed before them all, "Death to your house!-would you murder both your children?" The history of the third son, Mudduh Khan, gives a curious picture of the state of society among the Eusofzyes. He is now about fourteen years old; at the age of eleven, he drew his sword on his tutor, who had struck him, and ran away from his father's house, to which he could never be induced to come back. He found refuge with Mokurrib Khan, who resided independent of Futteh Khan in a fort some eight miles from Punjtar, and having (in the manner related of Nadir Shah) formed into a band several children of his own age, he carried on a sort of war with his father, plundering his sugar-canes, and otherwise annoying him. Futteh Khan would never allow the name of the boy to be pronounced in his presence. A few hours before his death, when he was distributing his property among his children, the Cazi
ventured to remind him of Mudduh Khan: "Who names that infidel?" said the dying man; "he is no child of mine."
The Eusofzyes are not the only inhabitants of the Sum. Leaving for the present the original possessors of the country, who are now reduced to the condition of Helots; the other tribes are the Gudoons, the Khuttuks, the Baeezyes, and the Mamunzyes (the Mahomedzyes of Elphinstone); but these last may be considered as separate from the Sum,
The Gudoons, called also Gudans, and east of the Indus, Judoons, are a Kaukur tribe, who migrated into these parts, perhaps two centuries ago. They are divided into two great branches, Salar and Munsoor, of whom the first are settled to the east of Punjtar, and the rest in Drumtour. The Salars are said to have 64 villages, and to muster 6,000 matchlocks; their government is a democracy, more rigid than that even of the Eusofzyes. I was nearly causing a quarrel at Grenduf, their chief town, by inadvertently asking who was their head Mullik. We were much struck by the appearance of wealth and comfort of their villages, which are large and populous, and the Hindoos seemed to be more numerous and thriving amongst them than in any part of the country we visited. The Khuttuks occupy the left bank of the Sundi, from below Noushera to Jehangiri. They have not more than fifteen or twenty villages; and their position has forced them to pay obedience to the Sikhs. The Baeezyes, whose numbers I have heard rated at 12,000 fighting men, are also Khuttuks, but they have for a long time been a separate and distinct tribe. Of their history I know nothing. They are always spoken of as the richest people in the country, and many of the Hindoos settled amongst them are said to possess great wealth. This is not improbable, as one of the principal roads from the north to Peshawar runs through their territory, and an active commerce is carried on, on either side of them, in salt, cloths, &c. Like the Gudoons, the Baeezyes are governed by petty Mulliks, and have always preserved their independence against all foreign enemies.
Of the population of the Sum, I can only form a guess of the probable amount, some data I had collected on the subject having been carried off by the Khyberees, but it may not perhaps be very inaccurately rated at one lac of fighting men. All the tribes above mentioned have the same manners and customs, and (including the Eusofs) may, without hesitation, be pronounced the best irregular soldiers in Affghanistan. Their cavalry, which are so few in number as scarcely to deserve notice, are, from their mode of training and equipment, rather Hindostanee than Affghan. The mass and strength of the Eusofzyes is infantry. Most of the soldiers, and every man is a soldier, are armed with heavy matchlocks; others have long spears, which they use with singular dexterity, either on horse or foot; a few are clothed in chain armour; and some use even bows and arrows of formidable size. They generally avoid close fighting, though, if forced to it, they have the character of being excellent swordsmen. It is said that they have some idea of opposing cavalry by into close masses, or Goles," with their spears extended; but this I have never seen, and am inclined to doubt. At whatever time of the day or night the "Nakara," or drum is beat in a particular measure, every man able to bear arms snatches them up, and hurries, ready for action, to his particular "Hoojra," or public meeting room, of which there are from eight to twenty in every village; and from thence, in distinct parties, under separate flags, they proceed to the scene of action, and despising the protection of walls, advance singly into the plain. A total want of discipline and order now distinguishes them. They have no head; each party, or "Hoojra," acts independently; and even those under one flag will not always obey one leader.
We have here the strength and weakness of the Eusofzyes; their number and alertness, their courage, sharpened by incessant fighting, and expertness in the use of their weapons, render them formidable to the irregular troops; but their peculiar mode of warfare incapacitates them from contending against a regular army. It is evident that a body of disciplined cavalry could, with the greatest facility, put to rout and cut up a herd of men scattered here and there over a level plain, totally ignorant of
tactics, and without unanimity. We need no further proof of their incompetence to contend on the plain with even semi-disciplined troops, than is afforded us by the battle of Noushera, in which, though stimulated to the utmost by religious enthusiasm, they were defeated by less than a third of their numbers.
Of the Kohistan, my information is, I must confess, very imperfect, and will be here limited to nearly a barren detail of names.
The tribes of Booneer and the neighbouring hills may be said to have no chiefs of any importance, the only individuals possessing influence being a family of Syuds, the descendants of Peer Baba, a celebrated saint, who lived in the time of the Emperor Humaioon. Of this family there are three principal branches amongst the Eusofs. The representatives of the elder and most influential branch are Syud Azim and Syud Meeah of Tukhtabund, the capital of Booneer, who may be compared to the Abbot Boniface and Subfriar Eustace of the novel; Syud Azim, the elder, a good-natured, indolent character, having willingly resigned his authority to his more active and talented brother. The second branch is Syud Akber Meeah, of Sitana on the Indus; and the third Syud Russool of Chumla.
The Booneeries (or Booneerwal, as they are more generally called) were the principal sufferers at the battle of Noushera. Blinded by religious fury and an undue estimate of their own strength, their only desire was to cut off the retreat of the Sikhs. They are said to have fought rather like devils than men. Moullas, boys, and unveiled women, mingled promiscuously in the fight. For days before, the whole Sum had been a moving mass of men, hastening from the upper country to join in the great struggle which was to vindicate the honour of Islam. Each man carried ten days provision. No correct estimate has ever been formed of the number of the "Ghazis," which name, in anticipation of victory, they had assumed; the greater part only shared in the flight. Had they delayed one day more, they would have been joined by the Swat army, which never reached the field. But it was impossible to hold them back. The Booneeries, distinguished by their black turbans with a bright yellow border from the rest of the Eusofzyes, who are generally clothed in white, first rushed forward, and by thus precipitating the contest, lost the day their courage deserved to gain. But their reckless valour was of no avail. Their scanty stock of ammunition soon expended, they fought with arrows, spears, swords, stones; one man scrambled up behind the elephant of Phoolra Sing, the real leader of the Sikhs, and cut down that chief with his “ silaweh,” or long knife. Repeatedly driven back by the steady fire of the Sikhs, they were as often rallied to the charge by the shrieks and curses of the women, and the" Allah ho Akbars" of the maddened Moullas. At last, but not till they were decimated, and every house in Booneer had to mourn its martyr, they broke and fled, cutting through the Sikhs whom they had wished to intercept, and from that time, broken-hearted, they have scarcely ventured to leave their valley. After the battle, dead Booneeries were found lying on dead Sikhs, their teeth still clutching the throats of their adversaries. Though seventeen years have elapsed since the fatal day, so deeply do they still feel their loss, that when unusual merriment has by chance prevailed in a "hoojra," a white-beard has been known to check them with-" Is this a time for laughing, when the bones of your brothers are whitening Noushera?"— Noushera is the common topic of conversation among the Eusofzyes, and the favourite theme of their songs. I was particularly struck with one which commenced
"Ah, Mahomed Azeem, where is the blood of our children you sold at Noushera ?" Chorus between every line, " Wae! Wae! Wae!"
Of all the Eusofzyes, the most powerful is Ghazan Khan of Deer, but he is perfectly aware of the delicate tenure on which he holds his authority, and in consequence is anxious to form connections with any power which may strengthen him in his rule. He intrigues with this view with the Douranees and with the Sikhs, and he is fast friends with the Bajore chief, and with the rulers of Cashgar and Chitrane. But the two first he would willingly betray, and the last he plunders whenever he gets an opportunity.
There is one chief who, though not an Eusofzye, yet from his position in the midst
of, and intimate connection with, the Eusofzyes, and his singular history and character, must not be omitted in a description of the Eusofzye country. Paieendah Khan, of Tanawul, is a Mogul of the Birlas tribe, the same from which the Ameer Timoor was descended. All record of the first settlement in Tanawul of his family is lost, and it has long ago broken off all connection with the other branches of the Birlas, which are still to be found in Turkestan. The Tanawulees, who from their dialect, a corrupt Hindoostani, seem to be of eastern origin, are divided into two "tuppahs," the principal of which is Pulal, the other Hindowal, and these two divisions are, or were, respectively governed by two branches of the Birlas family. Paieendah Khan is descended from the junior branch, the Khans of the Hindowal, who had little power till the time of Nawab Khan (father of Paieendah), whose father having been killed by the chief of the Pulals, set himself up against them. Nawab Khan had the advantage of possessing the Douranee road, and enriched himself by a toll on all who travelled his way. The Douranees were constantly passing and repassing to and from Cashmeer, and their pride, as may well be conceived, could ill brook paying tribute to a petty tribe like the Tanawulees; much quarrelling and heart-burning was the consequence.
The celebrated Noorjehan, more commonly known by the name of Adè, or “ the mother," the Baumizye mother of Futteh Khan vuzeer, was en route to Cashmeer, on a visit to Mahomed Azeem Khan, the governor. Toll was as usual demanded, not of her, however, or her party, who out of respect were to pass free, but of some people who followed her camp for protection. At this even the haughty lady took umbrage; and other causes of offence not being wanting, an army was sent under Jubar Khan to punish Nawab Khan. That chief had no option but to give himself up. He was received courteously, promises of favour and protection were showered on him, and he was requested to send for his family, when a maintenance and a place of residence would be fixed for them. This last request opened the eyes of the prisoner to the intentions of his captors; he pretended compliance, however, with their wishes, and requested only that "jam pans" (litters) might be sent with his son Paieendah Khan (then a lad, 17 years old) to bring the ladies. As the cortège was starting, Nawab Khan took his son aside, and whispered in his ear, “ Take care of yourself; consider me as a dead man, and give me your prayers." When the party reached the Tanawul territory, Paieendah Khan broke the fine “jam pans," and stripping the servants of Azeem Khan, sent them back to their master with the message-" My father is in your hands-do what you please with him; me you will never get into your clutches again." A heavy stone was tied to Nawab Khan, and he was thrown into the river. From this time, Paieendah Khan has been a sort of wild man, at war with all around him. Driven from his home, east of the Indus, by the Affghans, the Sikhs, and the Pulals, who had partially submitted to Runjeet Singh, and whose chief, Surbulund Khan, is now at Lahore, Paieendah Khan took possession of Am, on the right bank of the Indus, which originally belonged to the Pulals, and from thence for twenty-six years has never ceased to carry on a series of depredations on the Sikhs and all who submitted to them. He boasts that he has four different times raised an army of Ghazis, who have all fallen martyrs in the cause. Of his first band only three men are alive, and they are literally one mass of wounds. Am is a small nook of land, only a few hundred yards square, shut in between the deep and rapid Indus, and the lofty chain of the Mabeen hills, which close in upon it in a crescent.
The only road to it from the south is over a difficult path cut in the face of the rocks which over-hang the river. This and a somewhat similar spot high up, called Chutter bai (where his son resides), and a few villages on the left bank of the Indus, are all the lands of which Paieendah Khan can now boast. The aggregate return from them is said not to exceed two thousand rupees a year, but by his forays on the Sikhs, he is able to maintain 1,000 paid soldiers; and he is openly and secretly assisted by 3,000 or 4,000 of the Tanawulees.
He seizes Hindoos, from the wealthy of whom he extorts money; some he forces to labour in chains; others he compels to become Mussulmans, and if they are
refractory, he ties a stone round their necks, and flings them into the river; no oaths or ties bind him. He takes money from a village as exemption from plunder one day, and plunders it the next. His own brother even he has stripped of every thing. The Sikhs have numerous forts on the opposite bank of the river; they dare not leave them; his very grasscutters insult them every day with impunity. One of these forts commands that in which Paeen Khan himself resides. I pointed this out to him; "Would you like to see me take it?" said he; " I will do so in half an hour." In fact, the Sikhs are only there by his sufferance; he derives a revenue from them; they paying that their supplies may not be intercepted; as his band passes under their forts on a plundering expedition, the Sikh soldiers salute him from the walls and wish him good luck.
FROM A PERSIAN POET.
مرد خردمند هنرپیشه را
عمر دو بایست درین روزگار
تا ز يكي تجربه آموختي
با دگري تجربه بردي بكار
FROM A PERSIAN POET.
اگر بقاف عدم افتدت عبور اي جان
زمن پیام رسان خاکپاي عنقارا
که زینهار مفرسا قدم براه وجود
عدم خوشست نگهدار دایم آنجارا