By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: Himalayan Journals — Volume 2
 - Or, Notes of a Naturalist in Bengal, the Sikkim and Nepal Himalayas, the Khasia Mountains, etc.
Author: Hooker, Joseph Dalton
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Himalayan Journals — Volume 2
 - Or, Notes of a Naturalist in Bengal, the Sikkim and Nepal Himalayas, the Khasia Mountains, etc." ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.




Volume II

First published 1854



Arrangements for second journey into Sikkim -- Opposition of Dewan --
Lassoo Kajee -- Tendong -- Legend of flood -- Lama of Silok-foke --
Namtchi -- Tchebu Lama -- Top of Tendong -- Gigantic oak -- Plants --
Teesta valley -- Commencement of rains -- Bhomsong -- Ascent to
Lathiang -- View -- Bad road -- Orchids -- Gorh -- Opposition of Lama
-- Arrival of Meepo -- Cross Teesta -- Difficulties of travelling --
Lepchas swimming -- Moxa for sprains -- Singtam -- Grandeur of view
of Kinchinjunga -- Wild men -- Singtam Soubah -- Landslips -- Bees'
nests and honey-seekers -- Leeches, etc. -- Chakoong -- Vegetation --
Gravel terraces -- Unpleasant effects of wormwood -- Choongtam,
scenery and vegetation of -- Inhabitants -- Tibetan salute -- Lamas
-- Difficulty of procuring food -- Contrast of vegetation of inner
and outer Himalaya -- Rhododendrons -- Yew -- _Abies Brunoniana_ --
Venomous snakes -- Hornets and other insects -- Choongtam temple --
Pictures of Lhassa -- Minerals -- Scenery.


Routes from Choongtam to Tibet frontier -- Choice of that by the
Lachen river -- Arrival of supplies -- Departure -- Features of the
valley -- Eatable _Polygonum_ -- Tumlong -- Cross Taktoong river --
Pines, larches, and other trees -- Chateng pool -- Water-plants and
insects -- Tukcham mountain -- Lamteng village -- Inhabitants --
Alpine monkey -- Botany of temperate Himalaya -- European and
American fauna -- Japanese and Malayan genera -- Superstitious
objections to shooting -- Customs of people -- Rain -- Run short of
provisions -- Altered position of Tibet frontier -- Zemu Samdong --
Imposition -- Vegetation -- Uses of pines -- Ascent to Thlonok river
-- Balanophora wood for making cups -- Snow-beds -- Eatable mushrooms
and _Smilacina_ -- Asarabacca -- View of Kinchinjunga -- Arum-roots,
preparation of for food -- Liklo mountain -- Behaviour of my party --
Bridge constructed over Zemu -- Cross river -- Alarm of my party --
Camp on Zemu river.


Camp on Zemu river -- Scenery -- Falling rocks -- Tukcham mountain --
Height of glaciers -- Botany -- Gigantic rhubarb -- Insects -- Storm
-- Temperature of rivers -- Behaviour of Lachen Phipun -- Hostile
conduct of Bhoteeas -- View from mountains above camp -- Descend to
Zemu Samdong -- Vegetation -- Letters from Dorjiling -- Arrival of
Singtam Soubah -- Presents from Rajah -- Parties collecting
arum-roots -- Insects -- Ascend Lachen river -- Thakya-zong -- Tallum
Samdong village -- Cottages -- Mountains -- Plants -- Entomology --
Weather -- Halo -- Diseases -- Conduct of Singtam Soubah -- His
character and illness -- Agrees to take me to Kongra Lama -- Tungu --
Appearance of country -- Houses -- Poisoning by aram-roots -- Yaks
and calves -- Tibet ponies -- Journey to Kongra Lama -- Tibetan tents
-- Butter, curds, and churns -- Hospitality -- Kinchinjhow and
Chomiomo -- Magnificent scenery -- Reach Kongra Lama pass.


Top of Kongra Lama -- Tibet frontier -- Elevation -- View --
Vegetation -- Descent to Tungu -- Tungu-choo -- Ponies -- Kinchinjhow
and Chango-khang mountains -- Palung plains -- Tibetans -- Dogs --
Dingcham province of Tibet -- Inhabitants -- Dresses -- Women's
ornaments -- Blackening faces -- Coral -- Tents -- Elevation of
Palung -- Lama -- Shawl-wool goats -- Shearing -- Siberian plants --
Height of glaciers, and perpetual snow -- Geology -- Plants, and wild
animals -- Marmots -- Insects -- Birds -- Choongtam Lama -- Religious
exercises -- Tibetan hospitality -- _Delphinium_ -- Perpetual snow --
Temperature at Tungu -- Return to Tallum Samdong -- To Lamteng --
Houses -- Fall of barometer -- Cicadas -- Lime deposits -- Landslips
-- Arrival at Choongtam -- Cobra -- Rageu -- Heat of climate --
Velocity and volume of rivers measured -- Leave for Lachoong valley
-- Keadom -- General features of valley -- Lachoong village -- Tunkra
mountain -- Moraines -- Cultivation -- Lachoong Phipun -- Lama
ceremonies beside a sick-bed.


Leave Lachoong for Tunkra pass -- Moraines and their vegetation --
Pines of great dimensions -- Wild currants -- Glaciers -- Summit of
pass -- Elevation -- Views -- Plants -- Winds -- Choombi district --
Lacheepia rock -- Extreme cold -- Kinchinjunga -- Himalayan grouse --
Meteorological observations -- Return to Lachoong -- Oaks -- Ascend
to Yeumtong -- Flats and debacles -- Buried pine-trunks -- Perpetual
snow -- Hot springs -- Behaviour of Singtam Soubah -- Leave for Momay
Samdong -- Upper limit of trees -- Distribution of plants -- Glacial
terraces, etc. -- Forked Donkia -- Moutonneed rocks -- Ascent to
Donkia pass -- Vegetation -- Scenery -- Lakes -- Tibet -- Bhomtso --
Arun river -- Kiang-lah mountains -- Yaru-Tsampu river -- Appearance
of Tibet -- Kambajong -- Jigatzi -- Kinchinjhow, and Kinchinjunga --
Chola range -- Deceptive appearance of distant landscape -- Perpetual
snow -- Granite -- Temperatures -- Pulses -- Plants -- Tripe de roche
-- Return to Momay -- Dogs and yaks -- Birds -- Insects -- Quadrupeds
-- Hot springs -- Marmots -- Kinchinjhow glacier.


Donkia glaciers -- Moraines -- Dome of ice -- Honey-combed surface --
Rocks of Donkia -- Metamorphic action of granite veins -- Accident to
instruments -- Sebolah pass -- Bees and May-flies -- View --
Temperature -- Pulses of party -- Lamas and travellers at Momay --
Weather and climate -- Dr. Campbell leaves Dorjiling for Sikkim --
Leave Momay -- Yeumtong -- Lachoong -- Retardation of vegetation at
low elevations -- Choongtam -- Landslips and debacle -- Meet Dr.
Campbell -- Motives for his journey -- Second visit to Lachen valley
-- Autumnal tints -- Red currants -- Lachen Phipun -- Tungu --
Scenery -- Animals -- Poisonous rhododendrons -- Fire-wood -- Palung
-- Elevations -- Sitong -- Kongra Lama -- Tibetans -- Enter Tibet --
Desolate scenery -- Plants -- Animals -- Geology -- Cholamoo lakes --
Antelopes -- Return to Yeumtso -- Dr. Campbell lost -- Extreme cold
-- Headaches -- Tibetan Dingpun and guard -- Arms and accoutrements
-- Temperature of Yeumtso -- Migratory birds -- Visit of Dingpun --
Yeumtso lakes.


Ascent of Bhomtso -- View of snowy mountains -- Chumulari -- Arun
river -- Kiang-lah mountains -- Jigatzi -- Lhassa -- Dingcham
province of Tibet -- Misapplication of term "Plain of Tibet" --
Sheep, flocks of -- Crops -- Probable elevation of Jigatzi --
Yaru-Tsampu river -- Tame elephants -- Wild horses -- Dryness of air
-- Sunset beams -- Rocks of Kinchinjhow -- Cholamoo lakes --
Limestone -- Dip and strike of rocks -- Effects of great elevation on
party -- Ascent of Donkia -- Moving piles of debris -- Cross Donkia
pass -- Second visit to Momay Samdong -- Hot springs -- Descent to
Yeumtong -- Lachoong -- Retardation of vegetation again noticed --
Jerked meat -- Fish -- Lose a thermometer -- Lepcha lad sleeps in hot
spring -- Keadom -- _Bucklandia_ -- Arrive at Choongtam -- Mendicant
-- Meepo -- Lachen-Lachoong river -- Wild grape -- View from Singtam
of Kinchinjunga -- Virulent nettle.


Journey to the Rajah's residence at Tumloong -- Ryott valley --
Rajah's house -- Tupgain Lama -- Lagong nunnery -- Phadong Goompa --
Phenzong ditto -- Lepcha sepoys -- Proceedings at Tumloong -- Refused
admittance to Rajah -- Women's dresses -- Meepo's and Tchebu Lama's
families -- Chapel -- Leave for Chola pass -- Ryott river -- Rungpo,
view from -- Deputation of Kajees, etc. -- Conference -- Laghep --
Eatable fruit of _Decaisnea -- Cathcartia_ -- Rhododendrons --
Phieung-goong -- Pines -- Rutto river -- Barfonchen -- Curling of
rhododendron leaf -- Woodcock -- Chola pass -- Small lakes -- Tibet
guard and sepoys -- Dingpun -- Arrival of Sikkim sepoys -- Their
conduct -- Meet Singtam Soubah -- Chumanako -- We are seized by the
Soubah's party -- Soubah's conduct -- Dingpun Tinli -- Treatment of
Dr. Campbell -- Bound and guarded -- Separated from Campbell --
Marched to Tumloong -- Motives for such conduct -- Arrive at Rungpo
-- At Phadong -- Presents from Rajah -- Visits of Lama -- Of Singtam
Soubah -- I am cross-questioned by Amlah -- Confined with Campbell --
Seizure of my Coolies -- Threats of attacking Dorjiling.


Dr. Campbell is ordered to appear at Durbar -- Lamas called to
council -- Threats -- Scarcity of food -- Arrival of Dewan -- Our
jailer, Thoba-sing -- Temperature, etc., at Tumloong -- Services of
Goompas -- Lepcha girl -- Jews'-harp -- Terror of servants --
Ilam-sing's family -- Interview with Dewan -- Remonstrances -- Dewan
feigns sickness -- Lord Dalhousie's letter to Rajah -- Treatment of
Indo-Chinese -- Concourse of Lamas -- Visit of Tchebu Lama -- Close
confinement -- Dr. Campbell's illness -- Conference with Amlah --
Relaxation of confinement -- Pemiongchi Lama's intercession -- Escape
of Nimbo -- Presents from Rajah, Ranee, and people -- Protestations
of friendship -- Mr. Lushington sent to Dorjiling -- Leave Tumloong
-- Cordial farewell -- Dewan's merchandize -- Gangtok Kajee --
Dewan's pomp -- Governor-General's letter -- Dikkeeling -- Suspicion
of poison -- Dinner and pills -- Tobacco -- Bhotanese colony --
Katong-ghat on Teesta -- Wild lemons -- Sepoys' insolence -- Dewan
alarmed -- View of Dorjiling -- Threats of a rescue -- Fears of our
escape -- Tibet flutes -- Negotiate our release -- Arrival at
Dorjiling -- Dr. Thomson joins me -- Movement of troops at Dorjiling
-- Seizure of Rajah's Terai property.


Leave Dorjiling for Calcutta -- Jung Bahadoor -- Dr. Falconer --
Improvements in Botanic Gardens -- Palmetum -- Victoria --
_Amherstia_ -- Orchids spread by seed -- Banyan -- _Cycas_ --
Importation of American plants in ice -- Return to Dorjiling -- Leave
with Dr. Thomson for the Khasia mountains -- Mahanuddy river --
Vegetation of banks -- Maldah -- Alligators -- Rampore-Bauleah --
Climate of Ganges -- Pubna -- Jummul river -- Altered course of
Burrampooter and Megna -- Dacca -- Conch shells -- Saws -- Cotton
muslins -- Fruit -- Vegetation -- Elevation -- Rose of Bengal --
Burrampooter -- Delta of Soormah river -- Jheels -- Soil --
Vegetation -- Navigation -- Mosquitos -- Atmospheric pressure --
Effects of geological changes -- Imbedding of plants -- Teelas or
islets -- Chattuc -- Salubrious climate -- Rains -- Canoes -- Pundua
-- Mr. Harry Inglis -- Terrya Ghat -- Ascent to Churra -- Scenery and
vegetation at foot of mountains -- Cascades.


Churra, English station of -- Khasia people -- Garrow people --
Houses -- Habits --	Dress -- Arms -- Dialects -- Marriages -- Food --
Funerals -- Superstitions -- Flat of Churra -- Scenery -- Lime and
coal -- Mamloo -- Cliffs -- Cascades -- _Chamaerops_ palm --
Jasper-rocks -- Flora of Churra -- Orchids -- Rhododendrons --	Pine
-- Climate -- Extraordinaiy rain-fall -- Its effects -- Gardens of
Lieuts. Raban and Cave -- Leave Churra to cross the mountain range --
Coal, shale, and under-clay -- Kala-panee river -- Lailangkot --
_Luculia Pinceana_ -- Conglomerate -- Surureem wood -- Boga-panee
river -- View of Himalaya -- Greenstone -- Age of pine-cones --
Moflong plants -- _Coix_ -- Chillong mountain -- Extensive view --
Road to Syong -- Broad valleys -- Geology -- Plants -- Myrung --
Granite blocks -- Kollong rock -- Pine-woods -- Features of country
-- Orchids -- Iron forges.


View of Himalaya from the Khasia -- Great masses of snow -- Chumulari
-- Donkia -- Grasses -- Nunklow -- Assam valley and Burrampooter --
Tropical forest -- Bor-panee -- Rhododendrons -- Wild elephants --
Blocks of Syenite -- Return to Churra -- Coal -- August temperature
-- Leave for Chela -- Jasper hill -- Birds -- _Arundina_ -- Habits of
leaf-insects -- Curious village -- Houses -- Canoes -- Boga-panee
river -- Jheels -- Chattuc -- Churra -- Leave for Jyntea hills --
Trading parties -- Dried fish -- Cherries -- Cinnamon -- Fraud --
Pea-violet -- Nonkreem -- Sandstone -- Pines -- Granite boulders --
Iron washing -- Forges -- Tanks -- Siberian _Nymphaea_ -- Barren
country -- Pomrang -- _Podostemon_ -- Patchouli plant -- Mooshye --
Enormous stone slabs -- Pitcher-plant -- Joowye -- Cultivation and
vegetation -- _Hydropeltis_ -- Sulky hostess -- Nurtiung --
_Hamamelis chinensis_ -- Bor-panee river -- Sacred grove and gigantic
stone structures -- Altars -- Pyramids, etc. -- Origin of names --
_Yandaca coerulea_ -- Collections -- November vegetation -- Geology
of Khasia -- Sandstone -- Coal -- Lime -- Gneiss -- Greenstone --
Tidal action -- Strike of rocks -- Comparison with Rajmahal hills and
the Himalaya.


Best voyage to Silhet -- River -- Palms -- Teelas -- Botany -- Fish
weirs -- Forests of Cachar -- Sandal-wood, etc. -- Porpoises --
Alligators -- Silchar -- Tigers -- Rice crops -- Cookies --
Munniporees -- Hockey -- Varnish -- Dance -- Nagas -- Excursion to
Munnipore frontier -- Elephant bogged -- Bamboos -- _Cardiopteris_ --
Climate, etc., of Cachar -- Mosquitos -- Fall of banks -- Silhet --
Oaks -- _Stylidium_ -- Tree-ferns -- Chattuc -- Megna -- Meteorology
-- Palms -- Noa-colly -- Salt-smuggling -- Delta of Ganges and Megna
-- Westward progress of Megna -- Peat -- Tide -- Waves -- Earthquakes
-- Dangerous navigation -- Moonlight scenes -- Mud island --
Chittagong -- Mug tribes -- Views -- Trees -- Churs -- Flagstaff hill
-- Coffee -- Pepper -- Tea, etc. -- Excursions from Chittagong --
_Dipterocarpi_ or Gurjun oil trees -- Earthquake -- Birds -- Papaw --
Bleeding of stems -- Poppy and Sun fields -- -- Seetakoond --
Bungalow and hill -- Perpetual flame -- _Falconeria -- Cycas_ --
Climate -- Leave for Calcutta -- Hattiah island -- Plants --
8underbunds -- Steamer -- Tides -- _Nipa fruticans_ -- Fishing --
Otters -- Crocodiles -- _Phoenix paludosa_ -- Departure from India.





Fig. VI. View of Kinchinjunga from Singtam, looking north-westward.
Fig. VII. Kinchinjunga from the Thlonok river, with rhododendrons in
flower. Frontispiece
Fig. VIII. Tibet and Cholamoo lake from the summit of the Donkia
pass, looking north-west. p.124
Fig. IX. Kinchinjhow, Donkia, and Cholamoo lake, from the summit of
Bhomtso, looking south; the summit of Chumulari is introduced in the
extreme left of the view. p.166
Fig. X. The table-land and station of Churra, with the Jheels, course
of the Soormah river, and Tipperah hills in the extreme distance,
looking south. p.277
Fig. XI. The Bhotan Himalaya, Assam valley, and Burrampooter river,
from Nunklow, looking north. p.300
Fig. XII. Seetakoond hill. p.352


Fig. 1. Pandanus in the Teesta valley. p.9
Fig. 2. Cane-bridge over the Lachen-Lachoong river, below Choongtam.
Tukcham mountain is brought into the view, as seen from a higher
elevation. p.21
Fig. 3. _Juniperus recurva,_ the weeping juniper. p.28
Fig. 4. Lamteng village, with Tukcham in the distance. p.35
Fig. 5. Black juniper and young larch. p.55
Fig. 6. Tungu village, with yaks in the foreground. p.73
Fig. 7. Women's head-dresses--the two outer, Lepcha girls; the two
inner, Tibetan women. p.86
Fig. 8. Tibet marmot. Sketched by J. E. Winterbottom, Esq. p.93
Fig. 9. Lachoong valley (looking south), larch tree in the
foreground. p.103
Fig. 10. Conical ancient moraines in the Lachoong valley, with _Abies
brunoniana_ and _smithiana_. p.104
Fig. 11. Head and legs of Tibet marmot. Sketched by J. E.
Winterbottom, Esq. p.106
Fig. 12. Block of gneiss with granite bands, on the Kinchinjhow
glacier. p.135
Fig. 13. Summit of forked Donkia mountain, with Goa antelopes in the
foreground; from 17,500 feet elevation. p.139
Fig. 14. View of the eastern top of Kinchinjhow, and Tibet in the
distance, with wild sheep in the foreground; from an elevation of
18,000 feet. p.140
Fig. 15. Head of Chiru antelope, the unicorn of Tibet. From a sketch
by Lieut. H. Maxwell. p.158
Fig. 16. A Phud, or Tibetan mendicant. Sketched at Dorjiling by Miss
Colvile. p.187
Fig. 17. Tea (brick of), tea-pot, wooden cup, etc. p.189
Fig. 18. Portrait of Aden Tchebu Lama. Sketched by Lieut. H. Maxwell.
Fig. 19. Silver chain and hooks, ornamented with turquoises, used to
fasten women's cloaks. p.195
Fig. 20. Horns of the Showa stag of Tibet (_Cervus wallichii_).
Sketched by Lieut. H. Maxwell. p.214
Fig. 21. Rajah's house at Tumloong, in the foreground the cottage in
which Dr. Campbell was confined, with the Dewan's retinue passing.
This is partly executed from memory. p.217
Fig. 22. Tibetan tobacco-pipe and tinder-pouch, with steel attached.
Fig. 23. Lepcha sepoys, the right hand figures, and Tibetan ones on
the left. p.235
Fig. 24. Dr. Falconer's residence, Calcutta Botanic Gardens; from Sir
L. Peel's grounds, looking across the Hoogly. p.243
Fig. 25. View in the Jheels of Bengal, with Khasia mountains in the
distance. p.261
Fig. 26. Living bridge, formed of the aerial roots of figs. p.269
Fig. 27. Dewan's ear-ring of pearl and turquoises. p.271
Fig. 28. Waterfalls at Mamloo, with fan-palms. p.279
Fig. 29. Kollong rock. p.295
Fig. 30. Chela, on the Boga-panee river. p.307
Fig. 31. Nonkreem village, with boulders of denudation. p.311
Fig. 32. Bellows of iron smelters in the Khasia mountains. p.312
Fig. 33. Old bridge at Amwee. p.315
Fig. 34. Stones at Nurtiung. p.320
Fig. 35. _Dipterocarpus turbinatus,_ gurjun or wood-oil tree. p.349



Arrangements for second journey into Sikkim -- Opposition of Dewan --
Lassoo Kajee -- Tendong -- Legend of flood -- Lama of Sillok-foke --
Namtchi -- Tcbebu Lama -- Top of Tendong -- Gigantic oak -- Plants --
Teesta valley -- Commencement of rains -- Bhomsong -- Ascent to
Lathiang -- View -- Bad road -- Orcbids -- Gorh -- Opposition of Lama
-- Arrival of Meepo -- Cross Teesta -- Difficulties of travelling --
Lepchas swimming -- Moxa for sprains -- Singtam -- Grandeur of view
of Kinchinjunga -- Wild men -- Singtam Soubah -- Landslips --
Bees'-nests and honey-seekers -- Leeches, etc. -- Cbakoong --
Vegetation -- Gravel terraces -- Unpleasant effects of wormwood --
Choongtam, scenery and vegetation of -- Inhabitants -- Tibetan salute
-- Lamas -- Difficulty of procuring food -- Contrast of vegetation of
inner and outer Himalaya -- Rhododendrons -- Yew -- _Abies
Brunoniana_ -- Venomous snakes -- Hornets and other insects --
Choongtam temple -- Pictures of Lhassa -- Minerals -- Scenery.

After my return from the Terai, I was occupied during the month of
April in preparations for an expedition to the loftier parts of
Sikkim. The arrangements were the same as for my former journey,
except with regard to food, which it was necessary should be sent out
to me at intervals; for we had had ample proof that the resources of
the country were not equal to provisioning a party of from forty to
fifty men, even had the Dewan been favourable to my travelling, which
was clearly not the case.

Dr. Campbell communicated to the Rajah my intention of starting early
in May for the upper Teesta valley, and,  in the Governor-General's
name, requested that he would facilitate my visiting the frontier of
Sikkim, north-east of Kinchinjunga. The desired permission was, after
a little delay, received; which appeared to rouse the Dewan to
institute a series of obstructions to my progress, which caused so
many delays that my exploration of the country was not concluded till
October, and I was prevented returning to Dorjiling before the
following Christmas.

Since our visit to the Rajah in December, no Vakeel (agent) had been
sent by the Durbar to Dorjiling, and consequently we could only
communicate indirectly with his Highness, while we found it
impossible to ascertain the truth of various reports promulgated by
the Dewan, and meant to deter me from entering the country. In April,
the Lassoo Kajee was sent as Vakeel, but, having on a previous
occasion been dismissed for insolence and incapacity, and again
rejected when proposed by the Dewan at Bhomsong, he was refused an
audience; and he encamped at the bottom of the Great Rungeet valley,
where he lost some of his party through fever. He retired into
Sikkim, exasperated, pretending that he had orders to delay my
starting, in consequence of the death of the heir apparent; and that
he was prepared to use strong measures should I cross the frontier.

No notice was taken of these threats: the Rajah was again informed of
my intended departure, unless his own orders to the contrary were
received through a proper accredited agent, and I left Dorjiling on
the 3rd of May, accompanied by Dr. Campbell, who insisted on seeing
me fairly over the frontier at the Great Rungeet river.

Arrangements were made for supplies of rice following me by
instalments; our daily consumption being 80 lbs., a man's load.
After crossing into Sikkim, I mustered my  party at the Great Rungeet
river. I had forty-two in all, of whom the majority were young
Lepchas, or Sikkim-born people of Tibetan races: all were active and
cheerful looking follows; only one was goitred, and he had been a
salt-trader. I was accompanied by a guard of five Sepoys, and had a
Lepcha and Tibetan interpreter. I took but one personal servant, a
Portuguese half-caste (John Hoffman by name), who cooked for me: he
was a native of Calcutta, and though hardy, patient, and
long-suffering, and far better-tempered, was, in other respects, very
inferior to Clamanze, who had been my servant the previous year, and
who, having been bred to the sea, was as handy as he was clever; but
who, like all other natives of the plains, grew intolerably weary of
the hills, and left me.

The first part of my route lay over Tendong, a very fine mountain,
which rises 8,613 feet, and is a conspicuous feature from Dorjiling,
where it is known as Mount Ararat. The Lepchas have a curious legend
of a man and woman having saved themselves on its summit, during a
flood that once deluged Sikkim. The coincidence of this story with
the English name of Ararat suggests the probability of the legend
being fabulous; but I am positively assured that it is not so, but
that it was current amongst the Lepchas before its English name was
heard of, and that the latter was suggested from the peculiar form of
its summit resembling that given in children's books as the
resting-place of the ark.

The ascent from the Great Rungeet (alt. 818 feet) is through dry
woods of Sal and Pines (_P. longifolia_). I camped the first night at
the village of Mikk (alt. 3,900 feet), and on the following day
ascended to Namtc (alt. 5,600 feet).

On the route I was met by the Lama of Silokfoke Goompa. Though a
resident on the Lassoo Kajee's estates, he politely brought me a
present, at the same time apologising for not waiting till I had
encamped, owing to his excessive fat, which prevented his climbing.
I accepted his excuses, though well aware that his real reason was
that he wished to pay his respects, and show his good feeling, in
private. Besides his ordinary canonicals, he carried a tall
crozier-headed staff, and had a curious horn slung round his neck,
full of amulets; it was short, of a transparent red colour, and
beautifully carved, and was that of the small cow of Lhassa, which
resembles the English species, and is not a yak (it is
called "Tundro").

Namtchi was once a place of considerable importance; and still
possesses a mendong, with six rows of inscribed slabs; a temple, and
a Lama attached thereto: the latter waited on me soon after I had
encamped, but he brought no present, and I was not long kept in
suspense as to his motives. These people are poor dissemblers; if
they intend to obstruct, they do it clumsily and hesitatingly: in
this instance the Lama first made up to my people, and, being coolly
received, kept gradually edging up to my tent-door, where, after an
awkward salute, he delivered himself with a very bad grace of his
mission, which was from the Lassoo Kajee to stop my progress. I told
him I knew nothing of the Lassoo Kajee or his orders, and should
proceed on the following morning: he then urged the bad state of the
roads, and advised me to wait two days till he should receive orders
from the Rajah; upon which I dismissed him.

Soon afterwards, as I sat at my tent-door, looking along the narrow
bushy ridge that winds up the mountain, I saw twenty or thirty men
rapidly descending the rocky  path: they were Lepchas, with blue and
white striped garments, bows and quivers, and with their long knives
gleaming in the sun: they seemed to be following a figure in red Lama
costume, with a scarlet silk handkerchief wound round his head, its
ends streaming behind him. Though expecting this apparition to prove
the renowned Kajee and his myrmidons, coming to put a sudden
termination to my progress, I could not help admiring the exceeding
picturesqueness of the scenery and party. My fears were soon
dissipated by my men joyfully shouting, "The Tchebu Lama! the Tchebu
Lama!" and I soon recognised the rosy face and twinkling eyes of my
friend of Bhomsong, the only man of intelligence about the Rajah's
court, and the one whose services as Vakeel were particularly wanted
at Dorjiling.

He told me that the Lassoo Kajee had orders (from whom, he would not
say) to stop my progress, but that I should proceed nevertheless, and
that there was no objection to my doing so; and he despatched a
messenger to the Rajah, announcing my progress, and requesting him to
send me a guide, and to grant me every facility, asserting that he
had all along fully intended doing so.

On the following morning the Lama proceeded to Dorjiling, and I
continued the ascent of Tendong, sending my men round the shoulder to
Temi in the Teesta valley, where I proposed to pass the night.
The road rapidly ascends by a narrow winding path, covered with a
loose forest of oaks, rhododendrons, and various shrubs, not found at
equal elevations on the wetter Dorjiling ranges: amongst, them the
beautiful laburnum-like _Piptanthus Nepalensis,_ with golden
blossoms, was conspicuous. Enormous blocks of white and red
stratified quartz, and slate, some 20 and even 40 yards long, rest on
the narrow  ridge at 7000 feet elevation. The last ascent is up a
steep rounded cone with a broad flat top, covered with dwarf bamboo,
a few oaks, laurels, magnolias, and white-flowered rhododendron trees
(_R. argenteum_), which obstructed the view. I hung the barometers
near one of the many chaits on the summit, where there is also a rude
temple, in which worship is performed once a year. The elevation is
8,671 feet by my observations.* [8,663 by Col. Waugh's
trigonometrical observations.] The geological formation of Tendong in
some measure accounts for its peculiar form. On the conical summit
are hard quartzoze porphyries, which have apparently forced up the
gneiss and slates, which dip in all directions from the top, and are
full of injected veins of quartz. Below 7000 feet, mica-schist
prevails, always inclined at a very high angle; and I found jasper
near Namtchi, with other indications of Plutonic action.

The descent on the north side was steep, through a rank vegetation,
very different from that of the south face. The oaks are very grand,
and I measured one (whose trunk was decayed, and split into three,
however), which I found to be 49 feet in girth at 5 feet from the
ground. Near Temi (alt. 4,770 feet) I gathered the fruit of
_Kadsura,_ a climbing plant allied to Magnolia, bearing round heads
of large fleshy red drupes, which are pleasantly acid and much eaten;
the seeds are very aromatic.

From Temi the road descends to the Teesta, the course of which it
afterwards follows. The valley was fearfully hot, and infested with
mosquitos and peepsas. Many fine plants grew in it:* [Especially upon
the broad terraces of gravel, some of which are upwards of a mile
long, and 200 feet above the stream: they are covered with boulders
of rock, and are generally opposite feeders of the river.]
I especially noticed _Aristolochia saccata,_  which climbs the
loftiest trees, bearing its curious pitcher-shaped flowers near the
ground only; its leaves are said to be good food for cattle.
_Houttuynia,_ a curious herb allied to pepper, grew on the banks,
which, from the profusion of its white flowers, resembled
strawberry-beds; the leaves are eaten by the Lepchas. But the most
magnificent plant of these jungles is _Hodgsonia,_ (a genus I have
dedicated to my friend, Mr. Hodgson), a gigantic climber allied to
the gourd, bearing immense yellowish-white pendulous blossoms, whose
petals have a fringe of buff-coloured curling threads, several inches
long. The fruit is of a rich brown, like a small melon in form, and
contains six large nuts, whose kernels (called "Katior-pot" by the
Lepchas) are eaten. The stem, when cut, discharges water profusely
from whichever end is held downwards. The "Took" (_Hydnocarpus_) is a
beautiful evergreen tree, with tufts of yellow blossoms on the trunk:
its fruit is as large as an orange, and is used to poison fish, while
from the seeds an oil is expressed. Tropical oaks and Terminalias are
the giants of these low forests, the latter especially, having
buttressed trunks, appear truly gigantic; one, of a kind called
"Sung-lok," measured 47 feet in girth, at 5 feet, and 21 at 15 feet
from the ground, and was fully 200 feet high. I could only procure
the leaves by firing a ball into the crown. Some of their trunks lay
smouldering on the ground, emitting a curious smell from the mineral
matter in their ashes, of whose constituents an account will be found
in the Appendix.

Birds are very rare, as is all animal life but insects, and a small
fresh-water crab, _Thelphusa,_ ("Ti-hi" of the Lepchas). Shells, from
the absence of lime, are extremely scarce, and I scarcely picked up a
single specimen: the most common are species of _Cyclostoma._

The rains commenced on the 10th of May, greatly increasing the
discomforts of travelling, but moderating the heat by drenching
thunder-storms, which so soaked the men's loads, that I was obliged
to halt a day in the Teesta valley to have waterproof covers made of
platted bamboo-work, enclosing Phrynium leaves. I was delighted to
find that my little tent was impervious to water, though its
thickness was but of one layer of blanket: it was a single ridge with
two poles, 7 feet high, 8 feet long, and 8 feet broad at the base,
forming nearly an equilateral triangle in front.

Bhomsong was looking more beautiful than ever in its rich summer
clothing of tropical foliage. I halted during an hour of heavy rain
on the spot where I had spent the previous Christmas, and could not
help feeling doubly lonely in a place where every rock and tree
reminded me of that pleasant time. The isolation of my position, the
hostility of the Dewan, and consequent uncertainty of the success of
a journey that absorbed all my thoughts, the prevalence of fevers in
the valleys I was traversing, and the many difficulties that beset my
path, all crowded on the imagination when fevered by exertion and
depressed by gloomy weather, and my spirits involuntarily sank as I
counted the many miles and months intervening between me and my home.

The little flat on which I had formerly encamped was now covered with
a bright green crop of young rice. The house then occupied by the
Dewan was now empty and unroofed; but the suspension bridge had been
repaired, and its light framework of canes, spanning the boiling
flood of the Teesta, formed a graceful object in this most beautiful
landscape. The temperature of the river was 58 degrees, only 7
degrees above that of mid-winter, owing to the now melting snows.
I had rather expected to meet either with a guide, or with some
further obstruction here, but as none appeared, I proceeded onwards
as soon as the weather moderated.


Higher up, the scenery resembles that of Tchintam on the Tambur: the
banks are so steep as to allow of no road, and the path ascends from
the river, at 1000 feet, to Lathiang village, at 4,800 feet, up a
wild, rocky torrent that descends from Mainom to the Teesta.
The cliffs here are covered with wild plantains and screw-pines
(_Pandanus_),  50 feet high, that clasp the rocks with cable-like
roots, and bear one or two crowns of drooping leaves, 5 feet long:
two palms, Rattan (_Calamus_) and _Areca gracilis,_ penetrate thus
far up the Teesta valley, but are scarcely found further.

From the village the view was superb, embracing the tropical gulley
below, with the flat of Bhomsong deep down in the gorge, its bright
rice-fields gleaming like emeralds amid the dark vegetation that
surrounded it; the Teesta winding to the southward, the pine-clad
rocky top of Mainom, 10,613 feet high, to the south-west, the cone of
Mount Ararat far to the south, to the north black mountains tipped
with snow, and to the east the magnificent snowy range of Chola,
girdling the valley of the Ryott with a diadem of frosted silver.
The coolies, each carrying upwards of 80 lb. load, had walked twelve
hours that day, and besides descending 2000 feet, they had ascended
nearly 4000 feet, and gone over innumerable ups and downs besides.

Beyond Lathiang, a steep and dangerous path runs along the east flank
of Mainom, sometimes on narrow ledges of dry rock, covered with long
grass, sometimes dipping into wooded gullies, full of _Edgeworthia
Gardneri_ and small trees of Andromeda and rhododendron, covered with
orchids* [Especially some species of _Sunipia_ and _Cirrhopetalum,_
whicb have not yet been introduced into England.] of great beauty.

Descending to Gorh (4,100 feet), I was met by the Lama of that
district, a tall, disagreeable-looking fellow, who informed me that
the road ahead was impassable. The day being spent, I was obliged to
camp at any rate; after which he visited me in full canonicals,
bringing me a handsome present, but assuring me that he had no
authority to let me advance. I treated him with civility, and
regretted my objects being so imperative, and my orders so clear,
that I was obliged to proceed on the following morning: on which he
abruptly decamped, as I suspected, in order to damage the paths and
bridges. He came again at daylight, and expostulated further; but
finding it of no use, he volunteered to accompany me, officiously
offering me the choice of two roads. I asked for the coolest, knowing
full well that it was useless to try and out-wit him in such matters.
At the first stream the bridge was destroyed, but seeing the planks
peeping through the bushes in which they had been concealed, I
desired the Lama to repair it, which he did without hesitation. So it
was at every point: the path was cumbered with limbs of trees,
crossing-stones were removed from the streams, and all natural
difficulties were increased. I kept constantly telling the Lama that
as he had volunteered to show me the road, I felt sure he intended to
remove all obstacles, and accordingly I put him to all the trouble I
possibly could, which he took with a very indifferent grace. When I
arrived at the swinging bridge across the Teesta, I found that the
canes were loosened, and that slips of bamboo, so small as nearly to
escape observation, were ingeniously placed low down over the single
bamboo that formed the footing, intended to trip up the unwary
passenger, and overturn him into the river, which was deep, and with
a violent current. Whilst the Lama was cutting these, one of my party
found a charcoal writing on a tree, announcing the speedy arrival
from the Rajah of my old guide, Meepo; and he shortly afterwards
appeared, with instructions to proceed with me, though not to the
Tibetan frontier. The lateness of the season, the violence of the
rains, and the fears, on the Rajah's part, that I might  suffer from
fever or accident, were all urged to induce me to return, or at least
only to follow the west branch of the Teesta to Kinchinjunga.
These reasons failing, I was threatened with Chinese interference on
the frontier. All these objections I overruled, by refusing to
recognise any instructions that were not officially communicated to
the Superintendent of Dorjiling.

The Gorh Lama here took leave of me: he was a friend of the Dewan,
and was rather surprised to find that the Rajah had sent me a guide,
and now attempted to pass himself off as my friend, pompously
charging Meepo with the care of me, and bidding me a very polite
farewell. I could not help telling him civilly, but plainly, what I
thought of him; and so we parted.

Meepo was very glad to join my party again: he is a thorough Lepcha
in heart, a great friend of his Rajah and of Tchebu Lama, and one who
both fears and hates the Dewan. He assured me of the Rajah's good
wishes and intentions, but spoke with great doubt as to the
probability of a successful issue to my journey: he was himself
ignorant of the road, but had brought a guide, whose appearance,
however, was against him, and who turned out to be sent as a spy on
us both.

Instead of crossing the Teesta here, we kept on for two days up its
west bank, to a cane bridge at Lingo, where the bed of the river is
still only 2000 feet above the sea, though 45 miles distant from the
plains, and flowing in a valley bounded by mountains 12,000 to 16,000
feet high. The heat was oppressive, from the closeness of the
atmosphere, the great power of the sun, now high at noon-day, and the
reflection from the rocks. Leeches began to swarm as the damp
increased, and stinging flies of various kinds. My clothes were
drenched with perspiration during five  hours of every day, and the
crystallising salt irritated the skin. On sitting down to rest, I was
overcome with languor and sleep, and, but for the copious supply of
fresh water everywhere, travelling would have been intolerable.
The Coolies were all but naked, and were constantly plunging into the
pools of the rivers; for, though filthy in their persons, they revel
in cold water in summer. They are powerful swimmers, and will stem a
very strong current, striking out with each arm alternately. It is an
animated sight when twenty or thirty of these swarthy children of
nature are disporting their muscular figures in the water, diving
after large fish, and sometimes catching them by tickling them under
the stones.

Of plants I found few not common at similar elevations below
Dorjiling, except another kind of Tree-fern,* [_Alsophila spinulosa,_
the "Pugjik" of the Lepchas, who eat the soft watery pith: it is
abundant in East Bengal and the Peninsula of India. The other Sikkim
Tree-fern, _A. gigantea,_ is far more common from the level of the
plains to 6,500 elevation, and is found as far south as Java.] whose
pith is eaten in times of scarcity. The India-rubber fig penetrates
thus far amongst the mountains, but is of small size. A Gentian,
_Arenaria,_ and some sub-alpine plants are met with, though the
elevation is only 2000 feet, and the whole climate thoroughly
tropical: they were annuals usually found at 7000 to 10,000 feet
elevation, and were growing here on mossy rocks, cooled by the spray
of the river, whose temperature was only 56.3 degrees. My servant
having severely sprained his wrist by a fall, the Lepchas wanted to
apply a moxa, which they do by lighting a piece of puff-ball, or
Nepal paper that burns like tinder, laying it on the skin, and
blowing it till a large open sore is produced: they shook their heads
at my treatment, which consisted in transferring some of the leeches
from our persons to the inflamed part.

After crossing the Teesta by the cane bridge of Lingo, our route lay
over a steep and lofty spur, round which the river makes a great
sweep. On the ascent of this ridge we passed large villages on flats
cultivated with buckwheat. The saddle is 5,500 feet high, and thence
a rapid descent leads to the village of Singtam, which faces the
north, and is 300 feet lower, and 3000 feet above the river, which is
here no longer called the Teesta, but is known as the
Lachen-Lachoong, from its double origin in the rivers of these names,
which unite at Choongtam, twenty miles higher up. Of these, the
source of the Lachen is in the Cholamoo lakes in Tibet; while the
Lachoong rises on the south flank of Donkia mountain, both many
marches north of my present position. At Singtam the Lacben-Lachoong
runs westward, till joined by the Rihi from the north, and the
Rinoong from the west, after receiving which it assumes the name of
Teesta: of these affluents, the Rinoong is the largest, and drains
the south-east face of Kinchinjunga and Pundim, and the north of
Nursing: all which mountains are seen to the north-north-west of
Singtam. The Rinoong valley is cultivated for several miles up, and
has amongst others the village and Lamasery of Bah. Beyond this the
view of black, rugged precipices with snowy mountains towering above
them, is one of the finest in Sikkim. There is a pass in that
direction, from Bah over the Tckonglah to the Thlonok valley, and
thence to the province of Jigatzi in Tibet, but it is almost


A race of wild men, called "Harrum-mo," are said to inhabit the head
of the valley, living in the woods of a district called Mund-po,
beyond Bah; tbey shun habitations, speak an unintelligible tongue,
have more hair on the face than Lepchas, and do not plait that of
their heads, but  wear it in a knot; they use the bow and arrow, and
eat snakes and vermin, which the Lepchas will not touch. Such is the
account I have heard, and which is certainly believed in Sikkim:
similar stories are very current in half civilized countries; and if
this has any truth, it possibly refers to the Chepangs,* [Hodgson, in
"Bengal Asiatic Society's Journal" for 1848.] a very remarkable race,
of doubtful affinity and origin, inhabiting the Nepal forests.

At Singtam I was waited on by the Soubah of the district, a tall
portly Bhoteea, who was destined to prove a most active enemy to my
pursuits. He governs the country between Gorh and the Tibet frontier,
for the Maha-Raanee (wife of the Rajah), whose dowry it is; and she
being the Dewan's relative, I had little assistance to expect from
her agent. His conduct was very polite, and he brought me a handsome
offering for myself; but after delaying me a day on the pretext of
collecting food for my people, of which I was in want, I was obliged
to move on with no addition to my store, and trust to obtaining some
at the next village, or from Dorjiling. Owing, however, to the
increasing distance, and the destruction of the roads by the rains,
my supplies from that place were becoming irregular: I therefore
thought it prudent to reduce my party, by sending back my guard of
Sepoys, who could be of no further use.

From this point the upper portion of the course of the Teesta
(Lachen-Lachoong) is materially different from what it is lower down;
becoming a boisterous torrent, as suddenly as the Tambur does above
Mywa Guola. Its bed is narrower, large masses of rock impede its
course, nor is there any place where it is practicable for rafts at
any season; the only means of passing it being by cane bridges that
are thrown across, high above the stream.

The slope on either side of the valley is very steep; that on the
north, in particular, appearing too precipitous for any road, and
being only frequented by honey seekers, who scale the rocks by cane
ladders, and thus reach the pendulous bees'-nests, which are so large
as in some instances to be conspicuous features at the distance of a
mile. This pursuit appeared extremely perilous, the long thread-like
canes in many places affording the only footing, over many yards of
cliff: the procuring of this honey, however, is the only means by
which many of the idle poor raise the rent which they must pay to
the Rajah.

The most prominent effect of the steepness of the valleys is the
prevalence of land-slips, which sometimes descend for 3000 feet,
carrying devastation along their course: they are caused either by
the melting of the snow-beds on the mountains, or by the action of
the rains on the stratified rocks, and are much increased in effect
and violence by the heavy timber-trees which, swaying forwards,
loosen the earth at their roots, and give impetus to the mass.
This phenomenon is as frequent and destructive as in Switzerland,
where, however, more lives are lost; from the country being more
populous, and from the people recklessly building in places
particularly exposed to such accidents. A most destructive one had,
however, occurred here the previous year, by which a village was
destroyed, together with twelve of its inhabitants, and all the
cattle. The fragments of rock precipitated are sometimes of enormous
size, but being a soft mica-schist, are soon removed by weathering.
It is in the rainy season that landslips are most frequent, and
shortly after rain they are pretty sure to be heard far or near.
I crossed the debris of the great one alluded to, on the first march
beyond Singtam: the whole face of the mountain appeared more or less
torn up for fully  a mile, presenting a confused mass of white
micaceous clay, full of angular masses of rock. The path was very
difficult and dangerous, being carried along the steep slope, at an
angle, in some places, of 35 degrees; and it was constantly shifting,
from the continued downward sliding, and from the action of streams,
some of which are large, and cut deep channels. In one I had the
misfortune to lose my only sheep, which was carried away by the
torrent. These streams were crossed by means of sticks and ricketty
bamboos, and the steep sides (sometimes twenty or thirty feet high),
were ascended by notched poles.

The weather continued very hot for the elevation (4000 to 5000 feet),
the rain brought no coolness, and for the greater part of the three
marches between Singtam and Chakoong, we were either wading through
deep mud, or climbing over rocks. Leeches swarmed in incredible
profusion in the streams and damp grass, and among the bushes: they
got into my hair, hung on my eyelids, and crawled up my legs and down
my back. I repeatedly took upwards of a hundred from my legs, where
the small ones used to collect in clusters on the instep: the sores
which they produced were not healed for five months afterwards, and I
retain the scars to the present day. Snuff and tobacco leaves are the
best antidote, but when marching in the rain, it is impossible to
apply this simple remedy to any advantage. The best plan I found to
be rolling the leaves over the feet, inside the stockings, and
powdering the legs with snuf.

Another pest is a small midge, or sand-fly, which causes intolerable
itching, and subsequent irritation, and is in this respect the most
insufferable torment in Sikkim; the minutest rent in one's clothes is
detected by the acute senses of this insatiable bloodsucker, which is
itself so  small as to be barely visible without a microscope.
We daily arrived at our camping-ground, streaming with blood, and
mottled with the bites of peepsas, gnats, midges, and mosquitos,
besides being infested with ticks.

As the rains advanced, insects seemed to be called into existence in
countless swarms; large and small moths, cockchafers, glow-worms, and
cockroaches, made my tent a Noah's ark by night, when the candle was
burning; together with winged ants, May-flies, flying earwigs, and
many beetles, while a very large species of _Tipula_
(daddy-long-legs) swept its long legs across my face as I wrote my
journal, or plotted off my map. After retiring to rest and putting
out the light, they gradually departed, except a few which could not
find the way out, and remained to disturb my slumbers.

Chakoong is a remarkable spot in the bottom of the valley, at an
angle of the Lachen-Lachoong, which here receives an affluent from
Gnarem, a mountain 17,557 feet high, on the Chola range to the east.*
[This is called Black Rock in Col. Waugh's map. I doubt Gnarem being
a generally known name: the people hardly recognise the mountain as
sufficiently conspicuous to bear a name.] There is no village, but
some grass huts used by travellers, which are built close to the
river on a very broad flat, fringed with alder, hornbeam, and birch:
the elevation is 4,400 feet, and many European genera not found about
Dorjiling, and belonging to the temperate Himalaya, grow intermixed
with tropical plants that are found no further north. The birch,
willow, alder, and walnut grow side by side with wild plantain,
_Erythrina, Wallichia_ palm, and gigantic bamboos: the _Cedrela
Toona,_ figs, _Melastoma, Scitamineae,_ balsams, _Pothos,_ peppers,
and gigantic climbing vines, grow mixed with brambles, speedwell,
_Paris,_ forget-me-not, and nettles  that sting like poisoned arrows.
The wild English strawberry is common, but bears a tasteless fruit:
its inferiority is however counterbalanced by the abundance of a
grateful yellow raspberry. Parasitical Orchids (_Dendrobium nobile,_
and _densiflorum,_ etc.), cover the trunks of oaks, while
_Thalictrum_ and _Geranium_ grow under their shade. _Monotropa_ and
_Balanophora,_ both parasites on the roots of trees (the one a native
of north Europe and the other of a tropical climate), push their
leafless stems and heads of flowers through the soil together: and
lastly, tree-ferns grow associated with the _Pteris aquilina_ (brake)
and _Lycopodium clavatum_ of our British moors; and amongst mosses,
the superb Himalayan _Lyellia crispa,_* [This is one of the most
remarkable mosses in the Himalaya mountains, and derives additional
interest from having been named after the late Charles Lyell, Esq.,
of Kinnordy, the father of the most eminent geologist of the present
day.] with the English _Funaria hygrometrica._

The dense jungles of Chakoong completely cover the beautiful flat
terraces of stratified sand and gravel, which rise in three shelves
to 150 feet above the river, and whose edges appear as sharply cut as
if the latter had but lately retired from them. They are continuous
with a line of quartzy cliffs, covered with scarlet rhododendrons,
and in the holes of which a conglomerate of pebbles is found, 150
feet above the river. Everywhere immense boulders are scattered
about, some of which are sixty yards long: their surfaces are
water-worn into hollows, proving the river to have cut through nearly
300 feet of deposit, which once floored its valley. Lower down the
valley, and fully 2000 feet above the river, I had passed numerous
angular blocks resting on gentle slopes where no landslips could
possibly have deposited them; and which I therefore refer to ancient
glacial action: one of these,  near the village of Niong, was nearly
square, eighty feet long, and ten high.

It is a remarkable fact, that this hot, damp gorge is never
malarious; this is attributable to the coolness of the river, and to
the water on the flats not stagnating; for at Choongtam, a march
further north, and 1500 feet higher, fevers and ague prevail in
summer on similar flats, but which have been cleared of jungle, and
are therefore exposed to the sun.

I had had constant headache for several mornings on waking, which I
did not fail to attribute to coming fever, or to the unhealthiness of
the climate; till I accidentally found it to arise from the wormwood,
upon a thick couch of the cut branches of which I was accustomed to
sleep, and which in dry weather produced no such effects.* [This
wormwood (_Artemisia Indaca_) is one of the most common Sikkim plants
at 2000 to 6000 feet elevation, and grows twelve feet high: it is a
favourite food of goats.]

From Chakoong to Choongtam the route lay northwards, following the
course of the river, or crossing steep spurs of vertical strata of
mica-schist, that dip into the valley, and leave no space between
their perpendicular sides and the furious torrent. Immense landslips
seamed the steep mountain flanks; and we crossed with precipitation
one that extended fully 4000 feet (and perhaps much more) up a
mountain 12,000 feet high, on the east bank: it moves every year, and
the mud and rocks shot down by it were strewn with the green leaves
and twigs of shrubs, some of the flowers on which were yet fresh and
bright, while others were crushed: these were mixed with gigantic
trunks of pines, with ragged bark and scored timbers. The talus which
had lately been poured into the valley formed a gently sloping bank,
twenty feet high, over which the Lachen- Lachoong rolled, from a pool
above, caused by the damming up of its waters. On either side of the
pool were cultivated terraces of stratified sand and pebbles, fifty
feet high, whose alder-fringed banks, joined by an elegant cane
bridge, were reflected in the placid water; forming a little spot of
singular quiet and beauty, that contrasted with the savage grandeur
of the surrounding mountains, and the headstrong course of the
foaming torrent below, amid whose deafening roar it was impossible to
speak and be heard.


The mountain of Choongtam is about 10,000 feet high; it divides the
Lachen from the Lachoong river, and terminates a lofty range that
runs for twenty-two miles south from the lofty mountain of
Kinchinjhow. Its south exposed face is bare of trees, except clumps
of pines towards the top, and is  very steep, grassy, and rocky,
without water. It is hence quite unlike the forest-clad mountains
further south, and indicates a drier and more sunny climate. The
scenery much resembles that of Switzerland, and of the north-west
Himalaya, especially in the great contrast between the southern and
northern exposures, the latter being always clothed with a dense
vegetation. At the foot of this very steep mountain is a broad
triangular flat, 5,270 feet above the sea, and 300 feet above the
river, to which it descends by three level cultivated shelves.
The village, consisting of a temple and twenty houses, is placed on
the slope of the hill. I camped on the flat in May, before it became
very swampy, close to some great blocks of gneiss, of which many lie
on its surface: it was covered with tufts of sedge (like _Carex
stellulata_), and fringed with scarlet rhododendron, walnut,
_Andromeda, E1aeagnus_ (now bearing pleasant acid fruit), and small
trees of a _Photinia,_ a plant allied to hawthorn, of the leaves of
which the natives make tea (as they do of _Gualtheria, Andromeda,
Vaccinium,_ and other allied plants). Rice, cultivated* [Choongtam is
in position and products analogous to Lelyp, on the Tambur (vol. i,
Chapter IX). Rice cultivation advances thus high up each valley, and
at either place Bhoteeas replace the natives of the lower valleys.]
in pools surrounded by low banks, was just peeping above ground; and
scanty crops of millet, maize, and buckwheat flourished on the
slopes around.

The inhabitants of Choongtam are of Tibetan origin; few of them had
seen an Englishman before, and they flocked out, displaying the most
eager curiosity: the Lama and Phipun (or superior officer) of the
Lachoong valley came to pay their respects with a troop of followers,
and there was lolling out of tongues, and scratching of ears, at
every sentence spoken, and every object of admiration.  This
extraordinary Tibetan salute at first puzzled me excessively, nor was
it until reading MM. Huc and Gabet's travels on my return to England,
that I knew of its being the _ton_ at Lhassa, and in all civilised
parts of Tibet.

As the valley was under the Singtam Soubah's authority, I experienced
a good deal of opposition; and the Lama urged the wrath of the gods
against my proceeding. This argument, I said, had been disposed of
the previous year, and I was fortunate in recognising one of my
Changachelling friends, who set forth my kindly offices to the Lamas
of that convent, and the friendship borne me by its monks, and by
those of Pemiongchi. Many other modes of dissuading me were
attempted, but with Meepo's assistance I succeeded in gaining my
point. The difficulty and delays in remittance of food, caused by the
landslips having destroyed the road, had reduced our provisions to a
very low ebb; and it became not only impossible to proceed, but
necessary to replenish my stores on the spot. At first provisions
enough were brought to myself, for the Rajah had issued orders for my
being cared for, and having some practice among the villagers in
treating rheumatism and goitres, I had the power of supplying my own
larder; but I found it impossible to buy food for my people. At last,
the real state of the case came out; that the Rajah having gone to
Choombi, his usual summer-quarters in Tibet, the Dewan had issued
orders that no food should be sold or given to my people, and that no
roads were to be repaired during my stay in the country; thus cutting
off my supplies from Dorjiling, and, in short, attempting to starve
me out. At this juncture, Meepo received a letter from the Durbar
purporting to be from the Rajah, commanding my immediate return, on
the grounds that I had been long enough in the country for my
objects: it was not  addressed to me, and I refused to receive it as
an official communication; following up my refusal by telling Meepo
that if he thought his orders required it, he had better leave me and
return to the Rajah, as I should not stir without directions from Dr.
Campbell, except forwards. He remained, however, and said he had
written to the Rajah, urging him to issue stringent orders for my
party being provisioned.

We were reduced to a very short allowance before the long-expected
supplies came, by which time our necessities had almost conquered my
resolution not to take by force of the abundance I might see around,
however well I might afterwards pay. It is but fair to state that the
improvident villagers throughout Sikkim are extremely poor in
vegetable food at this season, when the winter store is consumed, and
the crops are still green. They are consequently obliged to purchase
rice from the lower valleys, which, owing to the difficulties of
transport, is very dear; and to obtain it they barter wool, blankets,
musk, and Tibetan produce of all kinds. Still they had cattle, which
they would willingly have sold to me, but for the Dewan's orders.

There is a great difference between the vegetation of Dorjiling and
that of similar elevations near Choongtam situated far within the
Himalaya: this is owing to the steepness and dryness of the latter
locality, where there is an absence of dense forest, which is
replaced by a number of social grasses clothing the mountain sides,
many new and beautiful kinds of rhododendrons, and a variety of
European genera,* [_Deutzia, Saxifraga caliata, Thalictrum,
Euphorbia,_ yellow violet, _Labiatae, Androsace, Leguminosae,
Coriaria, Delphinium,_ currant, _Umbelliferae,_ primrose, _Anemone,
Convallaria, Roscoea, Mitella, Herminium, Drosera.] which (as I have
elsewhere noticed) are either  wholly absent from the damper ranges
of Dorjiling, or found there several thousand feet higher up. On the
hill above Choongtam village, I gathered, at 5000 to 6000 feet,
_Rhododendron arboreum_ and _Dalhousiae,_ which do not generally grow
at Dorjiling below 7,500 feet.* [I collected here ten kinds of
rhododendron, which, however, are not the social plants that they
become at greater elevations. Still, in the delicacy and beauty of
their flowers, four of them, perhaps, excel any others; they are, _R.
Aucklandii,_ whose flowers are five inches and a half in diameter;
_R. Maddeni, R. Dalhousiae,_ and _R. Edgeworthii,_ all white-flowered
bushes, of which the two first rise to the height of small trees.]
The yew appears at 7000 feet, whilst, on the outer ranges (as on
Tonglo), it is only found at 9,500 to 10,000 feet; and whereas on
Tonglo it forms an immense tall tree, with long sparse branches and
slender drooping twigs, growing amongst gigantic magnolias and oaks,
at Choongtam it is small and rigid, and much resembling in appearance
our churchyard yew.* [The yew spreads east from Kashmir to the Assam
Himalaya and the Khasia mountains; and the Japan, Philippine Island,
Mexican, and other North American yews, belong to the same
widely-diffused species. In the Khasia (its most southern limit) it
is found as low as 5000 feet above the sea-level.] At 8000 feet the
_Abies Brunoniana_ is found; a tree quite unknown further south; but
neither the larch nor the _Albies Smithiana_ (Khutrow) accompanied
it, they being confined to still more northern regions.

I have seldom had occasion to allude to snakes, which are rare and
shy in most parts of the Himalaya; I, however, found an extremely
venomous one at Choongtam; a small black viper, a variety of the
cobra di capello,* [Dr. Gray, to whom I am indebted for the following
information, assures me that this reptile is not specifically
distinct from the common Cobra of India; though all the mountain
specimens of it which he has examined retain the same small size and
dark colour. Of the other Sikkim reptiles which I procured seven are
_Colubridae_ and innocuous; five _Crotalidae_ are venomous, three of
which are new species belonging to the genera _Parias_ and
_Trimesurus._ Lizards are not abundant, but I found at Choongtam a
highly curious one, _Plestiodon Sikkimensis,_ Gray; a kind of Skink,
whose only allies are two North American congeners; and a species of
_Agama_ (a chameleon-like lizard) which in many important points more
resembled an allied American genus than an Asiatic one. The common
immense earth-worm of Sikkim, _Ichthyophis glutinosus,_ is a native
of the Khasia mountains, Singapore, Ceylon and Java. It is a most
remarkable fact, that whereas seven out of the twelve Sikkim snakes
are poisonous, the sixteen species I procured in the Khasia mountains
are innocuous.]  which it replaces in the drier grassy parts of the
interior of Sikkim, the large cobra not inhabiting in the mountain
regions. Altogether I only collected about twelve species in Sikkim,
seven of which are venomous, and all are dreaded by the Lepchas.
An enormous hornet (_Vespa magnifica,_ Sm.), nearly two inches long,
was here brought to me alive in a cleft-stick, lolling out its great
thorn-like sting, from which drops of a milky poison distilled: its
sting is said to produce fatal fevers in men and cattle, which may
very well be the case, judging from that of a smaller kind, which
left great pain in my hand for two days, while a feeling of numbness
remained in the arm for several weeks. It is called Vok by the
Lepchas, a common name for any bee: its larvae are said to be
greedily eaten, as are those of various allied insects.

Choongtam boasts a profusion of beautiful insects, amongst which the
British swallow-tail butterfly (_Papilio Machaon_) disports itself in
company with magnificent black, gold, and scarlet-winged butterflies,
of the Trojan group, so typical of the Indian tropics. At night my
tent was filled with small water-beetles (_Berosi_) that quickly put
out the candle; and with lovely moths came huge cockchafers
(_Encerris Griffithii_), and enormous and foetid flying-bugs (of the
genus _Derecterix_), which bear great horns on the thorax.
The irritation of mosquito and midge bites, and the disgusting
insects that clung with spiny legs to the blankets of my tent and
bed, were often as effectual in banishing sleep, as were my anxious
thoughts regarding the future.

The temple at Choongtam is a poor wooden building, but contains some
interesting drawings of Lhassa, with its extensive Lamaseries and
temples; they convey the idea of a town, gleaming, like Moscow, with
gilded and copper roofs; but on a nearer aspect it is found to
consist of a mass of stone houses, and large religious edifices many
stories high, the walls of which are regularly pierced with small
square ornamented windows.* [MM. Huc and Gabet's account of Lhassa
is, I do not doubt, excellent as to particulars; but the trees which
they describe as magnificent, and girdling the city, have uniformly
been represented to me as poor stunted willows, apricots, poplars,
and walnuts, confined to the gardens of the rich. No doubt the
impression left by these objects on the minds of travellers from
tree-less Tartary, and of Sikkimites reared amidst stupendous
forests, must be widely different. The information concerning Lhassa
collected by Timkowski, "Travels of the Russian Mission to China" (in
1821) is greatly exaggerated, though containing much that is true and
curious. The dyke to protect the city from inundations I never heard
of; but there is a current story in Sikkim that Lhassa is built in a
lake-bed, which was dried up by a miracle of the Lamas, and that in
heavy rain the earth trembles, and the waters bubble through the
soil: a Dorjiling rain-fall, I have been assured, would wash away the
whole city. Ermann (Travels in Siberia, i., p. 186), mentions a town
(Klinchi, near Perm), thus built over subterraneous springs, and in
constant danger of being washed away. MM. Huc and Gabet allude to the
same tradition under another form. They say that the natives of the
banks of the Koko-nor affirm that the waters of that lake once
occupied a subterranean position beneath Lhassa, and that the waters
sapped the foundations of the temples as soon as they were built,
till withdrawn by supernatural agency.]

There is nothing remarkable in the geology of Choongtam: the base of
the hill consists of the clay and mica slates overlain by gneiss,
generally dipping to the eastward; in the latter are granite veins,
containing fine tourmalines. Actinolites are found in some highly
metamorphic gneisses, brought by landslips from the neighbouring
heights. The weather in May was cloudy and showery, but the rain
which fell was far less in amount than that at Dorjiling: during the
day the sun's power was great; but though it rose between five and
six a.m., it never appeared above the lofty peaked mountains that
girdle the valley till eight a.m.  Dark pines crest the heights
around, and landslips score their flanks with white seams below;
while streaks of snow remain throughout the month at 9000 feet above;
and everywhere silvery torrents leap down to the Lachen and Lachoong.

Illustration--JUNIPERUS RECURVA (height 30 feet).


Routes from Choongtam to Tibet frontier -- Choice of that by the
Lachen river -- Arrival of Supplies -- Departure -- Features of the
valley -- Eatable _Polygonum_ -- Tumlong -- Cross Taktoong river --
Pines, larches, and other trees -- Chateng pool -- Water-plants and
insects -- Tukcham mountain -- Lamteng village -- Inhabitants --
Alpine monkey -- Botany of temperate Himalaya -- European and
American fauna -- Japanese and Malayan genera -- Superstitious
objections to shooting -- Customs of people -- Rain -- Run short of
provisions -- Altered position of Tibet frontier -- Zemu Samdong --
Imposition -- Vegetation -- Uses of pines -- Ascent to Thlonok river
-- Balanophora wood for making cups -- Snow-beds -- Eatable mushrooms
and _Smilacina_ -- Asarabacca -- View of Kinchinjunga -- Arum-roots,
preparation of for food -- Liklo mountain -- Bebaviour of my party --
Bridge constructed over Zemu -- Cross river -- Alarm of my party --
Camp on Zemu river.

From this place there were two routes to Tibet, each of about six
days' journey. One lay to the north-west up the Lachen valley to the
Kongra Lama pass, the other to the east up the Lachoong to the Donkia
pass. The latter river has its source in small lakes in Sikkim, south
of the Donkia mountain, a shoulder of which the pass crosses,
commanding a magnificent view into Tibet. The Lachen, on the other
hand (the principal source of the Teesta), rises beyond Sikkim in the
Cholamoo lakes. The frontier at Kongra Lama was described to me as
being a political, and not a natural boundary, marked out by cairns,
standing on a plain, and crossing the Lachen river. To both Donkia
and Kongra Lama I had every right to go, and was determined, if
possible, to reach them, in spite of Meepo's ignorance, our guide's
endeavours to frighten my party and mislead myself, and the country
people's dread of incurring the Dewan's displeasure.

The Lachen valley being pronounced impracticable in the height of the
rains, a month later, it behoved me to attempt it first, and it
possessed the attraction of leading to a frontier described as far to
the northward of the snowy Himalaya, on a lofty plateau, whose plants
and animals were different from anything I had previously seen.

After a week the coolies arrived with supplies: they had been delayed
by the state of the paths, and had consequently consumed a great part
of my stock, reducing it to eight days' allowance. I therefore
divided my party, leaving the greater number at Choongtam, with a
small tent, and instructions to forward all food to me as it arrived.
I started with about fifteen attendants, on the 25th of May, for
Lamteng, three marches up the Lachen.

Descending the step-formed terraces, I crossed the Lachen by a good
cane bridge. The river is a headstrong torrent, and turbid from the
vast amount of earthy matter which it bears along; and this character
of extreme impetuosity, unbroken by any still bend, or even swirling
pool, it maintains uninterruptedly at this season from 4000 to 10,000
feet. It is crossed three times, always by cane bridges, and I cannot
conceive any valley of its nature to be more impracticable at such a
season. On both sides the mountains rose, densely forest-clad, at an
average angle of 35 degrees to 40 degrees, to 10,000 and 15,000 feet.
Its extreme narrowness, and the grandeur of its scenery, were alike
recalled to my mind, on visiting the Sachs valley in the Valais of
Switzerland; from which, however, it differs in its luxuriant forest,
and in the slopes being more uniform and less broken up into those
imposing precipices so frequent in Switzerland, but which are wanting
in the temperate regions of the Sikkim Himalaya.

At times we scrambled over rocks 1000 feet above the river, or
descended into gorges, through whose tributary torrents we waded, or
crossed swampy terraced flats of unstratified shingle above the
stream; whilst it was sometimes necessary to round rocky promontories
in the river, stemming the foaming torrent that pressed heavily
against the chest as, one by one, we were dragged along by powerful
Lepchas. Our halting-places were on flats close to the river, covered
with large trees, and carpeted with a most luxuriant herbage, amongst
which a wild buckwheat (_Polygonum_*) [_Polygonum cymosum,_ Wall.
This is a common Himalayan plant, and is alsu found in the Khasia
mountains.] was abundant, which formed an excellent spinach: it is
called "Pullop-bi"; a name I shall hereafter have occasion to mention
with gratitude.

A few miles above Choongtam, we passed a few cottages on a very
extensive terrace at Tumlong; but between this and Lamteng, the
country is uninhabited, nor is it frequented during the rains.
We consequently found that the roads had suffered, the little bridges
and aids to climb precipices and cross landslips had been carried
away, and at one place we were all but turned back. This was at the
Taktoong river, a tributary on the east bank, which rushes down at an
angle of 15 degrees, in a sheet of silvery foam, eighteen yards
broad. It does not, where I crossed it, flow in a deep gulley, having
apparently raised its bed by an accumulation of enormous boulders;
and a plank bridge was thrown across it, against whose slippery and
narrow foot-boards the water dashed, loosening the supports on either
bank, and rushing between their foundation stones.

My unwilling guide had gone ahead with some of the coolies: I had
suspected him all along (perhaps unjustly) of avoiding the most
practicable routes; but when I found him waiting for me at this
bridge, to which he sarcastically pointed with his bow, I felt that
had he known of it, to have made difficulties before would have been
a work of supererogation. He seemed to think I should certainly turn
back, and assured me there was no other crossing (a statement I
afterwards found to be untrue); so, comforting myself with the hope
that if the danger were imminent, Meepo would forcibly stop me, I
took off my shoes, and walked steadily over: the tremor of the planks
was like that felt when standing on the paddle-box of a steamer, and
I was jerked up and down, as my weight pressed them into the boiling
flood, which shrouded me with spray. I looked neither to the right
nor to the left, lest the motion of the swift waters should turn my
head, but kept my eye on the white jets d'eau springing up between
the woodwork, and felt thankful when fairly on the opposite bank: my
loaded coolies followed, crossing one by one without fear or
hesitation. The bridge was swept into the Lachen very shortly

Towards Lamteng, the path left the river, and passed through a wood
of _Abies Smithiana._* [Also called _A. Khutrow_ and _Morinda._ I had
not before seen this tree in the Himalaya: it is a spruce fir, much
resembling the Norway spruce in general appearance, but with longer
pendulous branches. The wood is white, and considered indifferent,
though readily cleft into planks; it is called "Seh."] Larch appears
at 9000 feet, with _Abies Brunoniana._ An austere crab-apple, walnut,
and the willow of Babylon (the two latter perhaps cultivated), yellow
jessamine and ash, all scarce trees in Sikkim, are more or less
abundant in the valley, from 7000 to 8000 feet; as is an ivy, very
like the English, but with fewer and smaller yellow or reddish
berries; and many other plants,* [Wood-sorrel, a white-stemmed
bramble, birch, some maples, nut gigantic lily (_Lilium giganteum_),
_Euphorbia, Pedicularis, Spiraea, Philadelphus, Deutzia, Indigofera,_
and various other South Europe and North American genera.] not found
at equal elevations on the outer ranges of the Himalaya.

Chateng, a spur from the lofty peak of Tukcham,* ["Tuk" signifies
head in Lepcha, and "cheam" or "chaum," I believe, has reference to
the snow. The height of Tukcham has been re-calculated by Capt. R.
Strachey, with angles taken by myself, at Dorjiling and Jillapahar,
and is approximate only.] 19,472 feet high, rises 1000 feet above the
west bank of the river; and where crossed, commands one of the finest
alpine views in Sikkim. It was grassy, strewed with huge boulders of
gneiss, and adorned with clumps of park-like pines: on the summit was
a small pool, beautifully fringed with bushy trees of white rose, a
white-blossomed apple, a _Pyrus_ like _Aria,_ another like
mountain-ash, scarlet rhododendrons (_arboreum_ and _barbatum_),
holly, maples, and _Goughia,_* [This fine plant was named (Wight,
"Ic. Plant.") in honour of Capt. Gough, son of the late
commander-in-chief, and an officer to whom the botany of the
peninsula of India is greatly indebted. It is a large and handsome
evergreen, very similar in foliage to a fine rhododendron, and would
prove an invaluable ornament on our lawns, if its hardier varieties
were introduced into this country.] a curious evergreen laurel-like
tree: there were also Daphnes, purple magnolia, and a pink
sweet-blossomed _Sphaerostema._ Many English water-plants*
[_Sparganium, Typha, Potamogeton, Callitriche, Utricularia,_ sedges
and rushes.] grew in the water, but I found no shells; tadpoles,
however, swarmed, which later in the season become large frogs.
The "painted-lady " butterfly (_Cynthia Cardui_), and a pretty "blue"
were flitting over the flowers, together with some great tropical
kinds, that wander so far up these valleys, accompanying _Marlea,_
the only subtropical tree that ascends to 8,500 feet in the interior
of Sikkim.

The river runs close tinder the eastern side of the valley, which
slopes so steeply as to appear for many miles almost a continuous
landslip, 2000 feet high.

Lamteng village, where I arrived on the 27th of May, is quite
concealed by a moraine to the south, which, with a parallel ridge on
the north, forms a beautiful bay in the mountains, 8,900 feet above
the sea, and 1000 above the Lachen. The village stands on a grassy
and bushy flat, around which the pine-clad mountains rise steeply to
the snowy peaks and black cliffs which tower above. It contains about
forty houses, forming the winter-quarters of the inhabitants of the
valley, who, in summer, move with their flocks and herds to the
alpine pastures of the Tibet frontier. The dwellings are like those
described at Wallanchoon, but the elevation being lower, and the
situation more sheltered, they are more scattered; whilst on account
of the dampness of the climate, they are raised higher from the
ground, and the shingles with which they are tiled (made of _Abies
Webbiana_) decay in two or three years. Many are painted lilac, with
the gables in diamonds of red, black, and white: the roofs are either
of wood, or of the bark of _Abies Brunoniana,_ held down by large
stones: within they are airy and comfortable. They are surrounded by
a little cultivation of buck-wheat, radishes, turnips, and mustard.
The inhabitants, though paying rent to the Sikkim Rajah, consider
themselves as Tibetans, and are so in language, dress, features, and
origin: they seldom descend to Choongtam, but yearly travel to the
Tibetan towns of Jigatzi, Kambajong, Giantchi, and even to Lhassa,
having always commercial and pastoral transactions with the Tibetans,
whose flocks are pastured on the Sikkim mountains during summer, and
who trade with the plains of India through the medium of these

Illustration--LAMTENG VILLAGE.

The snow having disappeared from elevations below 11,000 feet, the
yaks, sheep, and ponies had just been driven 2000 feet up the valley,
and the inhabitants were preparing to follow, with their tents and
goats, to summer quarters at Tallum and Tungu. Many had goitres and
rheumatism, for the cure of which they flocked to my tent;
dry-rubbing for the latter, and tincture of iodine for the former,
gained me some credit as a doctor: I could, however, procure no food
beyond trifling presents of eggs, meal, and more rarely, fowls.

On arriving, I saw a troop of large monkeys*  [_Macacus Pelops?_
Hodgson. This is a very different species from the tropical kind seen
in Nepal, and mentioned at vol. i, Chapter XII.] gambolling in a wood
of _Abies Brunoniana_: this surprised me, as I was not prepared to
find so tropical an animal associated with a vegetation typical of a
boreal climate. The only other quadrupeds seen here were some small
earless rats, and musk-deer; the young female of which latter
sometimes afforded me a dish of excellent venison; being, though
dark-coloured and lean, tender, sweet, and short-fibred. Birds were
scarce, with the exception of alpine pigeons (_Columba leuconota_),
red-legged crows (_Corvus graculus,_ L.), and the horned pheasant
(_Meleagris Satyra,_ L.). In this month insects are scarce, _Elater_
and a black earwig being the most frequent: two species of _Serica_
also flew into my tent, and at night moths, closely resembling
European ones, came from the fir-woods. The vegetation in the,
neighbourhood of Lamteng is European and North American; that is to
say, it unites the boreal and temperate floras of the east and west
hemispheres; presenting also a few features peculiar to Asia. This is
a subject of very great importance in physical geography; as a
country combining the botanical characters of several others, affords
materials for tracing the direction in which genera and species have
migrated, the causes that favour their migrations, and the laws that
determine the types or forms of one region, which represent those of
another. A glance at the map will show that Sikkim is,
geographically, peculiarly well situated for investigations of this
kind, being centrically placed, whether as regards south-eastern Asia
or the Himalayan chain. Again, the Lachen valley at this spot is
nearly equi-distant from the tropical forests of the Terai and the
sterile mountains of Tibet, for which reason representatives both of
the dry central Asiatic and Siberian, and of the humid Malayan floras
meet there.

The mean temperature of Lamteng (about 50 degrees) is that of the
isothermal which passes through Britain in lat. 52 degrees, and east
Europe in lat. 48 degrees, cutting the parallel of 45 degrees in
Siberia (due north of Lamteng itself), descending to lat. 42 degrees
on the east coast of Asia, ascending to lat. 48 degrees on the west
of America, and descending to that of New York in the United States.
This mean temperature is considerably increased by descending to the
bed of the Lachen at 8000 feet, and diminished by ascending Tukcham
to 14,000 feet, which gives a range of 6000 feet of elevation, and 20
degrees of mean temperature. But as the climate and vegetation become
arctic at 12,000 feet, it will be as well to confine my observations
to the flora of 7000 to 10,000 feet; of the mean temperature, namely,
between 53 degrees and 43 degrees, the isothermal lines corresponding
to which embrace, on the surface of the globe, at the level of the
sea, a space varying in different meridians from three to twelve
degrees of latitude.* [On the west coast of Europe, where the
distance between these isothermal lines is greatest, this belt
extends almost from Stockholm and the Shetlands to Paris.] At first
sight it appears incredible that such a limited area, buried in the
depths of the Himalaya, should present nearly all the types of the
flora of the north temperate zone; not only, however, is this the
case, but space is also found at Lamteng for the intercalation of
types of a Malayan flora, otherwise wholly foreign to the north
temperate region.

A few examples will show this. Amongst trees the Conifers are
conspicuous at Lamteng, and all are of genera typical both of Europe
and North America: namely, silver fir, spruce, larch, and juniper,
besides the yew: there are also species of birch, alder, ash, apple,
oak, willow, cherry, bird-cherry, mountain-ash, thorn, walnut, hazel,
maple, poplar, ivy, holly, Andromeda, _Rhamnus._ Of bushes; rose,
berberry, bramble, rhododendron, elder, cornel, willow, honeysuckle,
currant, _Spiraea, Viburnum, Cotoneaster, Hippophae._ Herbaceous
plants* [As an example, the ground about my tent was covered with
grasses and sedges, amongst which grew primroses, thistles,
speedwell, wild leeks, _Arum, Convallaria, Callitriche, Oxalis,
Ranunculus, Potentilla, Orchis, Chaerophyllum, Galium, Paris,_ and
_Anagallis_; besides cultivated weeds of shepherd's-purse, dock,
mustard, Mithridate cress, radish, turnip, _Thlaspi arvense,_ and
_Poa annua._] are far too numerous to be enumerated, as a list would
include most of the common genera of European and North American

Of North American genera, not found in Europe, were _Buddleia,
Podophyllum, Magnolia, Sassafras? Tetranthera, Hydrangea, Diclytra,
Aralia, Panax, Symplocos, Trillium,_ and _Clintonia._ The absence of
heaths is also equally a feature in the flora of North America.
Of European genera, not found in North America, the Lachen valley has
_Coriaria, Hypecoum,_ and various _Cruciferae._ The Japanese and
Chinese floras are represented in Sikkim by _Camellia, Deutzia,
Stachyurus, Aucuba, Helwingia, Stauntonia, Hydrangea, Skimmia, Eurya,
Anthogonium,_ and _Enkianthus._ The Malayan by Magnolias, _Talauma,_
many vacciniums and rhododendrons, _Kadsura, Goughia, Marlea,_ both
coriaceous and deciduous-leaved _Caelogyne, Oberonia, Cyrtosia,
Calanthe,_ and other orchids; _Ceropegia, Parochetus, Balanophora,_
and many _Scitamineae_; and amongst trees, by _Engelhardtia,
Goughia,_ and various laurels.

Shortly after my arrival at Lamteng, the villagers sent to request
that I would not shoot, as they said it brought on excessive rain,*
[In Griffith's narrative of "Pemberton's Mission to Bhotan"
("Posthumous Papers, Journal," p. 283), it is mentioned that the
Gylongs (Lamas) attributed a violent storm to the members of the
mission shooting birds.] and consequent damage to the crops.
My necessities did not admit of my complying with their wish unless I
could procure food by other means; and I at first paid no attention
to their request. The people, however, became urgent, and the
Choongtam Lama giving his high authority to the superstition, it
appeared impolitic to resist their earnest supplication; though I was
well aware that the story was trumped up by the Lama for the purpose
of forcing me to return. I yielded on the promise of provisions being
supplied from the village, which was done to a limited extent; and I
was enabled to hold out till more arrived from Dorjiling, now, owing
to the state of the roads, at the distance of twenty days' march.
The people were always civil and kind: there was no concealing the
fact that the orders were stringent, prohibiting my party being
supplied with food, but many of the villagers sought opportunities by
night of replenishing my stores. Superstitious and timorous, they
regard a doctor with great veneration; and when to that is added his
power of writing, drawing, and painting, their admiration knows no
bounds: they flocked round my tent all day, scratching their ears,
lolling out their tongues, making a clucking noise, smiling, and
timidly peeping over my shoulder, but flying in alarm when my little
dog resented their familiarity by snapping at their legs. The men
spend the whole day in loitering about, smoking and spinning wool:
the women in active duties; a few were engaged in drying the leaves
of a shrub (_Symplocos_) for the Tibet market, which are used as a
yellow dye; whilst, occasionally, a man might be seen cutting a spoon
or a yak-saddle out of rhododendron wood.

During my stay at Lamteng, the weather was all but uniformly cloudy
and misty, with drizzling rain, and a southerly, or up-valley wind,
during the day, which changed to an easterly one at night:
occasionally distant thunder was heard. My rain-gauges showed very
little rain compared with what fell at Dorjiling during the same
period; the clouds were thin, both sun and moon shining through them,
without, however, the former warming the soil: hence my tent was
constantly wet, nor did I once sleep in a dry bed till the 1st of
June, which ushered in the month with a brilliant sunny day. At night
it generally rained in torrents, and the roar of landslips and
avalanches was then all but uninterrupted for hour after hour:
sometimes it was a rumble, at others a harsh grating sound, and often
accompanied with the crashing of immense timber-trees, or the murmur
of the distant snowy avalanches. The amount of denudation by
atmospheric causes is here quite incalculable; and I feel satisfied
that the violence of the river at this particular part of its course
(where it traverses those parts of the valleys which are most snowy
and rainy), is proximately due to impediments thus accumulated in
its bed.

It was sometimes clear at sunrise, and I made many ascents of
Tukcham, hoping for a view of the mountains towards the passes; but I
was only successful on one occasion, when I saw the table top of
Kinchinjhow, the most remarkable, and one of the most distant peaks
of dazzling snow which is seen from Dorjiling, and which, I was told,
is far beyond Sikkim, in Tibet.* [Such, however, is not the case;
Kinchinjhow is on the frontier of Sikkim, though a considerable
distance behind the most snowy of the Sikkim mountains.] I kept up a
constant intercourse with Choongtam, sending my plants thither to be
dried, and gradually reducing my party as our necessities urged my so
doing; lastly, I sent back the shooters, who had procured very
little, and whose occupation was now gone.

On the 2nd of June, I received the bad news that a large party of
coolies had been sent from Dorjiling with rice, but that being unable
or afraid to pass the landslips, they had returned: we had now no
food except a kid, a few handfuls of flour, and some potatos, which
had been sent up from Choongtam. All my endeavours to gain
information respecting the distance and position of the frontier were
unavailing; probably, indeed, the Lama and Phipun (or chief man of
the village), were the only persons who knew; the villagers calling
all the lofty pastures a few marches beyond Lamteng "Bhote" or
"Cheen" (Tibet). Dr. Campbell had procured for me information by
which I might recognise the frontier were I once on it; but no
description could enable me to find my way in a country so rugged and
forest-clad, through tortuous and perpetually forking valleys, along
often obliterated paths, and under cloud and rain. To these
difficulties must be added the deception of the rulers, and the fact
(of which I was not then aware), that the Tibet frontier was formerly
at Choongtam; but from the Lepchas constantly harassing the Tibetans,
the latter, after the establishment of the Chinese rule over their
country, retreated first to Zemu Samdong, a few hours walk above
Lamteng, then to Tallum Samdong, 2000 feet higher; and, lastly, to
Kongra Lama, 16,000 feet up the west flank of Kinchinjhow.

On the third of June I took a small party, with my tent, and such
provisions as I had, to explore up the river. On hearing of my
intention, the Phipun volunteered to take me to the frontier, which
he said was only two hours distant, at Zemu Samdong, where the Lachen
receives the Zemu river from the westward: this I knew must be false,
but I accepted his services, and we started, accompanied by a large
body of villagers, who eagerly gathered plants for me along the road.

The scenery is very pretty; the path crosses extensive and dangerous
landslips, or runs through fine woods of spruce and _Abies
Brunoniana,_ and afterwards along the river-banks, which are fringed
with willow (called "Lama"), and _Hippophae._ The great red rose
(_Rosa macrophylla_), one of the most beautiful Himalayan plants,
whose single flowers are as large as the palm of the hand, was
blossoming, while golden _Potentillas_ and purple primroses flowered
by the stream, and _Pyrola_ in the fir-woods.

Just above the fork of the valley, a wooden bridge (Samdong) crosses
the Zemu, which was pointed out to me as the frontier, and I was
entreated to respect two sticks and a piece of worsted stretched
across it; this I thought too ridiculous, so as my followers halted
on one side, I went on the bridge, threw the sticks into the stream,
crossed, and asked the Phipun to follow; the people laughed, and came
over: he then told me that he had authority to permit of my
botanising there, but that I was in Cheen, and that he would show me
the guard-house to prove the truth of his statement. He accordingly
led me up a steep bank to an extensive broad flat, several hundred
feet above the river, and forming a triangular base to the great spur
which, rising steeply behind, divides the valley. This flat was
marshy and covered with grass; and buried in the jungle were several
ruined stone houses, with thick walls pierced with loopholes: these
had no doubt been occupied by Tibetans at the time when this was
the frontier.

The elevation which I had attained (that of the river being 8,970
feet) being excellent for botanising, I camped; and the villagers,
contented with the supposed success of their strategy, returned to

My guide from the Durbar had staid behind at Lainteng, and though
Meepo and all my men well knew that this was not the frontier, they
were ignorant as to its true position, nor could we even ascertain
which of the rivers was the Lachen.* [The eastern afterwards proved
to be the Lachen.] The only routes I possessed indicated two paths
northwards from Lamteng, neither crossing a river: and I therefore
thought it best to remain at Zemu Samdong till provisions should
arrive. I accordingly halted for three days, collecting many new and
beautiful plants, and exploring the roads, of which five (paths or
yak-tracks) diverged from this point, one on either bank of each
river, and one leading up the fork.

On one occasion I ascended the steep hill at the fork; it was dry and
rocky, and crowned with stunted pines. Stacks of different sorts of
pine-wood were stored on the flat at its base, for export to Tibet,
all thatched with the bark of _Abies Brunoniana._ Of these the larch
(_Larix Griffithii,_ "Sah"), splits well, and is the most durable of
any; but the planks are small, soft, and white.* [I never saw this
wood to be red, close-grained, and hard, like that of the old Swiss
larch; nor does it ever reach so great a size.] The silver fir
(_Abies Webbiana,_ "Dunshing") also splits well; it is white, soft,
and highly prized for durability. The wood of _Abies Brunoniana_
("Semadoong") is like the others in appearance, but is not durable;
its bark is however very useful. The spruce (_Abies Smithiana,_
"Seh") has also white wood, which is employed for posts and beams.*
[These woods are all soft and loose in grain, compared with their
European allies.] These are the only pines whose woods are considered
very useful; and it is a curious circumstance that none produce any
quantity of resin, turpentine, or pitch; which may perhaps be
accounted for by the humidity of the climate.

_Pinus longifolia_ (called by the Lepchas "Gniet-koong," and by the
Bhoteeas "Teadong") only grows in low valleys, where better timber is
abundant. The weeping blue juniper (_Juniperus recurva,_ "Deschoo"),
and the arboreous black one (called "Tchokpo")* [This I have, vol. i.
Chapter XI, referred to the _J. excelsa_ of the north-west Himalaya,
a plant which under various names is found in many parts of Europe
and many parts of Europe and North America; but since then Dr.
Thomson and I have had occasion to compare my Sikkim conifers with
the north-west Himalayan ones and we have found that this Sikkim
species is probably new, and that _J. excelsa_ is not found east of
Nepal.] yield beautiful wood, like that of the pencil cedar,* [Also a
juniper, from Bermuda (_J. Bermudiana_).] but are comparatively
scarce, as is the yew (_Taxus baccata,_ "Tingschi"), whose timber is
red. The "Tchenden," or funereal cypress, again, is valued only for
the odour of its wood: _Pinus excelsa,_ "Tongschi," though common in
Bhotan, is, as I have elsewhere remarked, not found in east Nepal or
Sikkim; the wood is admirable, being durable, close-grained, and so
resinous as to be used for flambeaux and candles.

On the flat were flowering a beautiful magnolia with globular
sweet-scented flowers like snow-balls, several balsams, with species
of _Convallaria, Cotoneaster, Gentian, Spiraea, Euphorbia,
Pedicularis,_ and honeysuckle. On the hill-side were creeping
brambles, lovely yellow, purple, pink, and white primroses,
white-flowered _Thalictrum_ and _Anemone,_ berberry, _Podophyllum,_
white rose, fritillary, _Lloydia,_ etc. On the flanks of Tukcham, in
the bed of a torrent, I gathered many very alpine plants, at the
comparatively low elevation of 10,000 feet, as dwarf willows,
_Pinguicula,_ (a genus not previously found in the Himalaya),
_Oxyria, Adrosace, Tofieldia, Arenaria,_ saxifrages, and two dwarf
heath-like _Andromedas._* [Besides these, a month later, the
following flowered in profusion: scarlet _Buddleia?_ gigantic lily,
yellow jasmine, _Aster, Potentilla,_ several kinds of orchids,
willow-herb (_Epilobium_), purple _Roscoea, Neillia, Morina,_ many
grasses and _Umbelliferae._ These formed a rank and dense herbaceous,
mostly annual vegetation, six feet high, bound together with
_Cuscuta,_ climbing _Leguminosae,_ and _Ceropegia._ The great summer
heat and moisture here favour the ascent of various tropical genera,
of which I found in August several _Orchideae_ (_Calanthe,
Microstylis,_ and _Coelogyne_), also _Begonia, Bryonia, Cynanchum,
Aristolochia, Eurya, Procris, Acanthaceae,_ and _Cyrtandraseae._]
The rocks were all of gneiss, with granite veins, tourmaline, and
occasionally pieces of pure plumbago.

Our guide had remained at Lamteng, on the plea of a sore on his leg
from leech-bites: his real object, however, was to stop a party on
their way to Tibet with madder and canes, who, had they continued
their journey, would inevitably have pointed out the road to me.
The villagers themselves now wanted to proceed to the
pasturing-grounds on the frontier; so the Phipun sent me word that I
might proceed as far as I liked up the east bank of the Zemu. I had
explored the path, and finding it practicable, and likely to
intersect a less frequented route to the frontier (that crossing the
Tekonglah pass from Bah, see chapter XVIII), I determined to follow
it. A supply of food arrived from Dorjiling on the 5th of June,
reduced, however, to one bag of rice, but with encouraging letters,
and the assurance that more would follow at once. My men, of whom I
bad eight, behaved admirably, although our diet had for five days
chiefly consisted of _Polygonum_ ("Pullop-bi"), wild leeks
("Lagook"), nettles and _Procris_ (an allied, and more succulent
herb), eked out by eight pounds of Tibet meal ("Tsamba"), which I had
bought for ten shillings by stealth from the villagers.
What concerned me most was the destruction of my plants by constant
damp, and the want of sun to dry the papers; which reduced my
collections to a tithe of what they would otherwise have been.

From Zemu Samdong the valley runs north-west, for two marches, to the
junction of the Zemu with the Thlonok, which rises on the north-east
flank of Kinchinjunga: at this place I halted for several days, while
building a bridge over the Thlonok. The path runs first through a
small forest of birch, alder, and maple, on the latter of which I
found _Balanophora_* [A curious leafless parasite, mentioned at vol.
i, chapter v.] growing abundantly: this species produces the great
knots on the maple roots, from which the Tibetans form the cups
mentioned by MM. Huc and Gabet. I was so fortunate as to find a small
store of these knots, cleaned, and cut ready for the turner, and
hidden behind a stone by some poor Tibetan, who had never retained to
the spot: they had evidently been there a very long time.

In the ravines there were enormous accumulations of ice, the result
of avalanches; one of them crossed the river, forming a bridge thirty
feet thick, at an elevation of only 9,800 feet above the sea.
This ice-bridge was 100 yards broad, and flanked by heaps of
boulders, the effects of combined land and snowslips. These stony
places were covered with a rich herbage of rhubarb, primroses,
_Euphorbia, Sedum, Polygonum, Convallaria,_ and a purple _Dentaria_
("Kenroop-bi") a cruciferous plant much eaten as a pot-herb. In the
pinewoods a large mushroom ("Onglau,"* [_Cortinarius Emodensis_ of
the Rev. M. J. Berkeley, who has named and described it from my
specimens and drawings. It is also called "Yungla tchamo" by the
Tibetans, the latter word signifying a toadstool. Mr. Berkeley
informs me that the whole vast genus _Cortinarius_ scarcely possesses
a single other edible species; he adds that _C. violaceus_ and
_violaceo-cinereus_ are eaten in Austria and Italy, but not always
with safety.] Tibet.) was abundant, which also forms a favourite
article of food. Another pot-herb (to which I was afterwards more
indebted than any) was a beautiful _Smilacina,_ which grows from two
to five feet high, and has plaited leaves and crowded panicles of
white bell-shaped flowers, like those of its ally the lily of the
valley, which it also resembles in its mucilaginous properties. It is
called "Chokli-bi,"* [It is also found on the top of Sinchul, near
Dorjiling.] and its young flower-heads, sheathed in tender green
leaves, form an excellent vegetable. Nor must I forget to include
amongst the eatable plants of this hungry country, young shoots of
the mountain-bamboo, which are good either raw or boiled, and may be
obtained up to 12,000 feet in this valley. A species of _Asarum_
(Asarabacca) grows in the pine-woods; a genus not previously known to
be Himalayan. The root, like its English medicinal congener, has a
strong and peculiar smell. At 10,000 feet _Abies Webbiana_ commences,
with a close undergrowth of a small twiggy holly. This, and the dense
thicket of rhododendron* [Of which I had already gathered thirteen
kinds in this valley.] on the banks of the river and edges of the
wood, rendered the march very fatiguing, and swarms of midges kept up
a tormenting irritation.

The Zemu continued an impetuous muddy torrent, whose hoarse voice,
mingled with the deep grumbling noise* [The dull rumbling noise thus
produced is one of the most singular phenomena in these mountains,
and cannot fail to strike the observer. At night, especially, the
sound seems increased, the reason of which is not apparent, for in
these regions, so wanting in animal life, the night is no stiller
than the day, and the melting of snow being less, the volume of
waters must be somewhat, though not conspicuously, diminished.
The interference of sound by heated currents of different density is
the most obvious cause of the diminished reverberation during the
day, to which Humboldt adds the increased tension of vapour, and
possibly an echo from its particles.] of the boulders rolling along
its bed, was my lullaby for many nights. Its temperature at Zemu
Samdong was 45 degrees to 46 degrees in June. At its junction with
the Thlonok, it comes down a steep gulley from the north,
foreshortened into a cataract 1000 feet high, and appearing the
smaller stream of the two; whilst the Thlonok winds down from the
snowy face of Kinchinjunga, which is seen up the valley, bearing
W.S.W., about twenty miles distant. All around are lofty and rocky
mountains, sparingly wooded with pines and larch, chiefly on their
south flanks, which receive the warm, moist, up-valley winds; the
faces exposed to the north being colder and more barren: exactly the
reverse of what is the case at Choongtam, where the rocky and sunny
south-exposed flanks are the driest.

My tent was pitched on a broad terrace, opposite the junction of the
Zemu and Thlonok, and 10,850 feet above the sea. It was sheltered by
some enormous transported blocks of gneiss, fifteen feet high, and
surrounded by a luxuriant vegetation of most beautiful rhododendrons
in full flower, willow, white rose, white flowered cherry, thorn,
maple and birch. Some great tuberous-rooted _Arums_* [Two species of
_Arisaema,_ called "Tong" by the Tibetans, and "Sinkree" by the
Lepchas.] were very abundant; and the ground was covered with small
pits, in which were large wooden pestles: these are used in the
preparation of food from the arums, to which the miserable
inhabitants of the valley have recourse in spring, when their yaks
are calving. The roots are bruised with the pestles, and thrown into
these holes with water. Acetous fermentation commences in seven or
eight days, which is a sign that the acrid poisonous principle is
dissipated: the pulpy, sour, and fibrous mass is then boiled and
eaten; its nutriment being the starch, which exists in small
quantities, and which they have not the skill to separate by grating
and washing. This preparation only keeps a few days, and produces
bowel complaints, and loss of the skin and hair, especially when
insufficiently fermented. Besides this, the "chokli-bi," and many
other esculents, abounded here; and we had great need of them before
leaving this wild uninhabited region.

I repeatedly ascended the north flank of Tukcham along a watercourse,
by the side of which were immense slips of rocks and snow-beds; the
mountain-side being excessively steep. Some of the masses of gneiss
thus brought down were dangerously poised on slopes of soft shingle,
and daily moved a little downwards. All the rocks were gneiss and
granite, with radiating crystals of tourmaline as thick as the thumb.
Below 12,000 to 13,000 feet the mountain-sides were covered with a
dense scrub of rhododendron bushes, except where broken by rocks,
landslips, and torrents: above this the winter's snow lay deep, and
black rocks and small glaciers, over which avalanches were constantly
falling with a sullen roar, forbade all attempts to proceed.
My object in ascending was chiefly to obtain views and compass-
bearings, in which I was generally disappointed: once only I had a
magnificent prospect of Kinchinjunga, sweeping down in one unbroken
mass of glacier and ice, fully 14,000 feet high, to the head of the
Thlonok river, whose upper valley appeared a broad bay of ice;
doubtless forming one of the largest glaciers in the Himalaya, and
increased by lateral feeders that flow into it from either flank of
the valley. The south side of this (the Thlonok) valley is formed by
a range from Kinchinjunga, running east to Tukcham, where it
terminates: from it rises the beautiful mountain Liklo,* [D2 of the
peaks laid down in Colonel Waugh's "Trigonometrical Survey from
Dorjiling," I believe to be the "Liklo" of Dr. Campbell's itineraries
from Dorjiling to Lhassa, compiled from the information of the
traders (See "Bengal Asiatic Society's Journal" for 1848); the routes
in which proved of the utmost value to me.] 22,582 feet high, which,
from Dorjiling, appears as a sharp peak, but is here seen to be a
jagged crest running north and south. On the north flank of the
valley the mountains are more sloping and black, with patches of snow
above 15,000 feet, but little anywhere else, except on another
beautiful peak (alt. 19,240 feet) marked D3 on the map. This flank is
also continuous from Kinchin; it divides Sikkim from Tibet, and runs
north-east to the great mountain Chomiomo (which was not visible),
the streams from its north flank flowing into the Arun river (in
Tibet). A beautiful blue arch of sky spanned all this range,
indicating the dry Tibetan climate beyond.

I made two futile attempts to ascend the Thlonok river to the great
glaciers at the foot of Kinchinjunga, following the south bank, and
hoping to find a crossing-place, and so to proceed north to Tibet.
The fall of the river is not great at this part of its course, nor up
to 12,000 feet, which was the greatest height I could attain, and
about eight miles beyond my tents; above that point, at the base of
Liklo, the bed of the valley widens, and the rhododendron shrubbery
was quite impervious, while the sides of the mountain were
inaccessible. We crossed extensive snow-beds, by cutting holes in
their steep faces, and rounded rocks in the bed of the torrent,
dragging one another through the violent current, whose temperature
was below 40 degrees.

On these occasions, the energy of Meepo, Nimbo (the chief of the
coolies) and the Lepcha boys, was quite remarkable, and they were as
keenly anxious to reach the holy country of Tibet as I could possibly
be. It was sometimes dark before we got back to our tents, tired,
with torn clothes and cut feet and hands, returning to a miserable
dinner of boiled herbs; but never did any of them complain, or
express a wish to leave me. In the evenings and mornings they were
always busy, changing my plants, and drying the papers over a sulky
fire at my tent-door; and at night they slept, each wrapt in his own
blanket, huddled together under a rock, with another blanket thrown
over them all. Provisions reached us so seldom, and so reduced in
quantity, that I could never allow more than one pound of rice to
each man in a day, and frequently during this trying month they had
not even that; and I eked out our meagre supply with a few ounces of
preserved meats, occasionally "splicing the main brace" with weak rum
and water.

At the highest point of the valley which I reached, water boiled at
191.3, indicating an elevation of 11,903 feet. The temperature at 1
p.m. was nearly 70 degrees, and of the wet bulb 55 degrees,
indicating a dryness of 0.462, and dew point 47.0. Such phenomena of
heat and dryness are rare and transient in the wet valleys of Sikkim,
and show the influence here of the Tibetan climate.* [I gathered
here, amongst an abundance of alpine species, all of European and
arctic type, a curious trefoil, the _Parochetus communis,_ which
ranges through 9000 feet of elevation on the Himalaya, and is also
found in Java and Ceylon.]

After boiling my thermometer on these occasions, I generally made a
little tea for the party; a refreshment to which they looked forward
with child-like eagerness. The fairness with which these good-hearted
people used to divide the scanty allowance, and afterwards the
leaves, which are greatly relished, was an engaging trait in their
simple character: I have still vividly before me their sleek swarthy
faces and twinkling Tartar eyes, as they lay stretched on the ground
in the sun, or crouched in the sleet and snow beneath some sheltering
rock; each with his little polished wooden cup of tea, watching my
notes and instruments with curious wonder, asking, "How high are we?"
"How cold is it?" and comparing the results with those of other
stations, with much interest and intelligence.

On the 11th June, my active people completed a most ingenious bridge
of branches of trees, bound by withes of willow; by which I crossed
to the north bank, where I camped on an immense flat terrace at the
junction of the rivers, and about fifty feet above their bed.
The first step or ascent from the river is about five feet high, and
formed of water-worn boulders, pebbles, and sand, scarcely
stratified: the second, fully 1000 yards broad, is ten feet high, and
swampy. The uppermost is fifteen feet above the second, and is
covered with gigantic boulders, and vast rotting trunks of fallen
pines, buried in an impenetrable jungle of dwarf small-leaved holly
and rhododendrons. The surface was composed of a rich vegetable
mould, which, where clear of forest, supported a rank herbage, six to
eight feet high.* [This consisted of grasses, sedges, _Bupleurum,_
rhubarb, _Ranunculus, Convallaria, Smilacina,_ nettles, thistles,
_Arum,_ balsams, and the superb yellow _Meconopsis Nepalensis,_ whose
racemes of golden poppy-like flowers were as broad as the palm of the
hand; it grows three and even six feet high, and resembles a small
hollyhock; whilst a stately _Heracleum,_ ten feet high, towered over
all. Forests of silver fir, with junipers and larch, girdled these
flats and on their edges grew rhododendrons, scarlet _Spiraea,_
several honeysuckles, white _Clematis,_ and _Viburnum._ Ferns are
much scarcer in the pine-woods than elsewhere in the forest regions
of the Himalaya. In this valley (alt. 10,850 feet), I found only two
kinds; _Hymenophyllum, Lomaria, Cystopteris, Davallia,_ two
_Polypodia,_ and several _Aspidia_ and _Asplenia. Selaginella_
ascends to Zemu Samdong (9000 feet). The _Pteris aquilina_ (brake)
does not ascend above 10,000 feet.]

Our first discovery, after crossing, was of a good bridge across the
Zemu, above its junction, and of a path leading down to Zemu Samdong;
this was, however, scarcely traceable up either stream. My men were
better housed here in sheds: and I made several more ineffectual
attempts to ascend the valley to the glaciers. The path, gradually
vanishing, ran alternately through fir-woods, and over open grassy
spots, covered with vegetation, amongst which the gigantic arum was
plentiful, whose roots seemed to be the only attraction in this wet
and miserable valley.

On my return one day, I found my people in great alarm, the Phipun
having sent word that we were on the Tibet side of the rivers, and
that Tibetan troops were coming to plunder my goods, and carry my men
into slavery. I assured them he only wanted to frighten them; that
the Cheen soldiers were civil orderly people; and that as long as
Meepo was with us, there was no cause for fear. Fortunately a young
musk-deer soon afterwards broke cover close to the tent, and its
flesh wonderfully restored their courage: still I was constantly
harassed by threats; some of my people were suffering from cold and
bowel complaints, and I from rheumatism; while one fine lad, who came
from Dorjiling, was delirious with a violent fever, contracted in the
lower valleys, which sadly dispirited my party.

Having been successful in finding a path, I took my tent and a few
active lads 1000 feet up the Zemu, camping on a high rock above the
forest region, at 12,070 feet; hoping thence to penetrate northwards.
I left my collections in the interim at the junction of the rivers,
where the sheds and an abundance of firewood were great advantages
for preserving the specimens. At this elevation we were quite free
from midges and leeches (the latter had not appeared above 11,500
feet), but the weather continued so uniformly rainy and bad, that we
could make no progress. I repeatedly followed the river for several
miles, ascending to 13,300 feet; but though its valley widened, and
its current was less rapid, the rhododendron thickets below, and the
cliffs above, defeated all endeavours to reach the drier climate
beyond, of which I had abundant evidence in the arch of brilliant
blue that spanned the heavens to the north, beyond a black canopy of
clouds that hid everything around, and poured down rain without one
day's intermission, during the eight which I spent here.

Illustration--BLACH JUNIPER (height silty feet) AND YOUNG LARCH.


Camp on Zemu river -- Scenery -- Falling rocks -- Tukcham mountain --
Height of glaciers -- Botany -- Gigantic rhubarb -- Insects -- Storm
-- Temperature of rivers -- Behaviour of Lachen Phipun -- Hostile
conduct of Bhoteeas -- View from mountains above camp -- Descend to
Zemu Samdong -- Vegetation -- Letters from Dorjiling -- Arrival of
Singtam Soubah -- Presents from Rajah -- Parties collecting
Arum-roots -- Insects -- Ascend Lachen river -- Thakya-zong -- Tallum
Samdong village -- Cottages -- Mountains -- Plants -- Entomology --
Weather -- Halo -- Diseases -- Conduct of Singtam Soubah -- His
character and illness -- Agrees to take me to Kongra Lama -- Tungu --
Appearance of country -- Houses -- Poisoning by arum-roots -- Yaks
and calves -- Tibet ponies -- Journey to Kongra Lama -- Tibetan tents
-- Butter, curds, and churns -- Hospitality -- Kinchinjhow and
Chomiomo -- Magnificent Scenery -- Reach Kongra Lama Pass.

My little tent was pitched in a commanding situation, on a rock fifty
feet above the Zemu, overlooking the course of that river to its
junction with the Thlonok. The descent of the Zenlu in one thousand
feet is more precipitous than that of any other river of its size
with which I am acquainted in Sikkim, yet immediately above my camp
it was more tranquil than at any part of its course onwards to the
plains of India, whether as the Zemu, Lachen or Teesta. On the west
bank a fine mountain rose in steep ridges and shrubby banks to 15,000
feet; on the east a rugged cliff towered above the stream, and from
this, huge masses of rock were ever and anon precipitated into the
torrent, with a roar that repeatedly spread consternation amongst us.
During rains especially, and at night, when the chilled atmospheric
currents of air descend, and the sound is not dissipated as in the
day-time, the noise of these falls is sufficiently alarming. My tent
was pitched near the base of the cliff, and so high above the river,
that I had thought it beyond the reach of danger; but one morning I
found that a large fragment of granite had been hurled during the
night to my very door, my dog having had a very narrow escape.
To what depth the accumulation at the base of this cliff may reach, I
had no means of judging, but the rapid slope of the river-bed is
mainly due to this, and to old moraines at the mouth of the valley
below. I have seen few finer sights than the fall of these stupendous
blocks into the furious torrent, along which they are carried amid
feathery foam for many yards before settling to rest.

Across the Thlonok to the southwards, rose the magnificent mountain
of Tukcham, but I only once caught a glimpse of its summit, which
even then clouded over before I could get my instruments adjusted for
ascertaining its height. Its top is a sharp cone, surrounded by rocky
shoulders, that rise from a mass of snow. Its eastern slope of 8000
feet is very rapid (about 38 degrees) from its base at the Zemu river
to its summit.

Glaciers in the north-west Himalaya descend to 11,000 feet; but I
could not discover any in these valleys even so low as 14,000 feet,
though at this season extensive snowbeds remain unmelted at but
little above 10,000 feet. The foot of the stupendous glacier filling
the broad head of the Thlonok is certainly not below 14,000 feet;
though being continuous with the perpetual snow (or neve) of the
summit of Kinchinjunga, it must have 14,000 feet of ice, in
perpendicular height, to urge it forwards.

All my attempts to advance up the Zemu were fruitlesss and a snow
bridge by which I had hoped to cross to the opposite bank was carried
away by the daily swelling river, while the continued bad weather
prevented any excursions for days together. Botany was my only
resource, and as vegetation was advancing rapidly under the influence
of the southerly winds, I had a rich harvest: for though _Compositae,
Pedicularis,_ and a few more of the finer Himalayan plants flower
later, June is still the most glorious month for show.

Rhododendrons occupy the most prominent place, clothing the mountain
slopes with a deep green mantle glowing with bells of brilliant
colours; of the eight or ten species growing here, every bush was
loaded with as great a profusion of blossoms as are their northern
congeners in our English gardens. Primroses are next, both in beauty
and abundance; and they are accompanied by yellow cowslips, three
feet high, purple polyanthus, and pink large-flowered dwarf kinds
nestling in the rocks, and an exquisitely beautiful blue miniature
species, whose blossoms sparkle like sapphires on the turf. Gentians
begin to unfold their deep azure bells, aconites to rear their tall
blue spikes, and fritillaries and _Meconopsis_ burst into flower.
On the black rocks the gigantic rhubarb forms pale pyramidal towers a
yard high, of inflated reflexed bracts, that conceal the flowers, and
over-lapping one another like tiles, protect them from the wind and
rain: a whorl of broad green leaves edged with red spreads on the
ground at the base of the plant, contrasting in colour with the
transparent bracts, which are yellow, margined with pink. This is the
handsomest herbaceous plant in Sikkim: it is called "Tchuka," and the
acid stems are eaten both raw and boiled; they are hollow and full of
pure water: the root resembles that of the medicinal rhubarb, but it
is spongy and inert; it attains a length of four feet, and grows as
thick as the arm. The dried leaves afford a substitute for tobacco; a
smaller kind of rhubarb is however more commonly used in Tibet for
this purpose; it is called "Chula."

The elevation being 12,080 feet, I was above the limit of trees, and
the ground was covered with many kinds of small-flowered
honeysuckles, berberry, and white rose.* [Besides these I found a
prickly _Aralia,_ maple, two currants, eight or nine rhododendrons,
many _Sedums, Rhodiola,_ white _Clematis,_ red-flowered cherry,
birch, willow, _Viburnum,_ juniper, a few ferns, two _Andromedas,
Menziesia,_ and _Spircaea._ And in addition to the herbs mentioned
above, may be enumerated _Parnassia,_ many Saxifrages, _Soldanella,
Draba,_ and various other _Cruciferae, Nardostachys,_ (spikenard),
_Epilobium, Thalictrum,_ and very many other genera, almost all
typical of the Siberian, North European, and Arctic floras.]

I saw no birds, and of animals only an occasional muskdeer.
Insects were scarce, and quite different from what I had seen before;
chiefly consisting of _Phryganea_ (Mayfly) and some _Carabidae_ (an
order that is very scarce in the Himalaya); with various moths,
chiefly _Geometrae._

The last days of June (as is often the case) were marked by violent
storms, and for two days my tent proved no protection; similar
weather prevailed all over India, the barometer falling very low.
I took horary observations of the barometer in the height of the
storm on the 30th: the tide was very small indeed (.024 inch, between
9.50 a.m. and 4 p.m.), and the thermometer ranged between 47 degrees
and 57. degrees, between 7 a.m. and midnight. Snow fell abundantly as
low as 13,000 feet, and the rivers were much swollen, the size and
number of the stones they rolled along producing a deafening turmoil.
Only 3.7 inches of rain fell between the 23rd of June and the 2nd of
July; whilst 21 inches fell at Dorjiling, and 6.7 inches at Calcutta.
During the same period the mean temperature was 48 degrees; extremes,
62 degrees/36.5 degrees. The humidity was nearly at saturation-point,
the wind southerly, very raw and cold, and drizzling rain constantly
fell. A comparison of thirty observations with Dorjiling gave a
difference of 14 degrees temperature, which is at the rate of
1 degree for every 347 feet of ascent.* [Forty-seven observations,
comparative with Calcutta, gave 34. degrees difference, and if 5.5
degrees of temperature be deducted for northing in latitude, the
result is 1 degree for every 412 feet of ascent. My observations at
the junction of the rivers alt. 10,850 feet), during the early part
of the mouth, gave 1 degree to 304 feet, as the result of twenty-four
observations with Dorjiling, and 1 degree to 394 feet, from
seventy-four observations with Calcutta.]

The temperature of these rivers varies extremely at different parts
of their course, depending on that of their affluents. The Teesta is
always cool in summer (where its bed is below 2000 feet), its
temperature being 20 degrees below that of the air; whereas in
mid-winter, when there is less cloud, and the snows are not melting,
it is only a few degrees colder than the air.* [During my sojourn at
Bhomsong in mid-winter of 1848 (see v. i. chapter xiii), the mean
temperature of the Teesta was 51 degrees, and of the air 52.3
degrees; at that elevation the river water rarely exceeds 60 degrees
at midsummer. Between 4000 feet and 300 (the plains) its mean
temperature varies about 10 degrees between January and July; at 6000
feet it varies from 55 degrees to 43 degrees during the same period;
and at 10,000 feet it freezes at the edges in winter and rises to 50
degrees in July.] At this season, in descending from 12,000 feet to
1000 feet, its temperature does not rise 10 degrees, though that of
the air rises 30 degrees or 40 degrees. It is a curious fact, that
the temperature of the northern feeders of the Teesta, in some parts
of their course, rises with the increasing elevation! Of this the
Zemu afforded a curious example: during my stay at its junction with
the Thlonok it was 46 degrees, or 6 degrees warmer than that river;
at 1100 feet higher it was 48 degrees, and at 1100 feet higher still
it was 49 degrees! These observations were repeated in different
weeks, and several times on the same day, both in ascending and
descending, and always with the same result: they told, as certainly
as if I had followed the river to its source, that it rose in a drier
and comparatively sunny climate, and flowed amongst little
snowed mountains.

Meanwhile, the Lachen Phipun continued to threaten us, and I had to
send back some of the more timorous of my party. On the 28th of June
fifty men arrived at the Thlonok, and turned my people out of the
shed at the junction of the rivers, together with the plants they
were preserving, my boards, papers, and utensils. The boys came to me
breathless, saying that there were Tibetan soldiers amongst them, who
declared that I was in Cheen, and that they were coming on the
following morning to make a clean sweep of my goods, and drive me
back to Dorjiling. I had little fear for myself, but was anxious with
respect to my collections: it was getting late in the day, and
raining, and I had no mind to go down and expose myself to the first
brunt of their insolence, which I felt sure a night of such weather
would materially wash away. Meepo was too frightened, but Nimbo, my
Bhotan coolie Sirdar, volunteered to go, with two stout fellows; and
he accordingly brought away my plants and papers, having held a
parley with the enemy, who, as I suspected, were not Tibetans.
The best news he brought was, that they were half clad and without
food; the worst, that they swaggered and bullied: he added, with some
pride, that he gave them as good as he got, which I could readily
believe, Nimbo being really a resolute fellow,* [In East Nepal he
drew his knife on a Ghorka sepoy; and in the following winter was
bold enough to make his escape in chains from Tumloong.] and
accomplished in Tibet slang.

On the following morning it rained harder than ever, and the wind was
piercingly cold. My timid Lepchas huddled behind my tent, which, from
its position, was only to be stormed in front. I dismantled my little
observatory, and packed up the instruments, tied my dog, Kinchin, to
one of the tent-pegs, placed a line of stones opposite the door, and
seated myself on my bed on the ground, with my gun beside me.

The dog gave tongue as twenty or thirty people defiled up the glen,
and gathered in front of my tent; they were ragged Bhoteeas, with
bare heads and legs, in scanty woollen garments sodden with rain,
which streamed off their shaggy hair, and furrowed their sooty faces:
their whole appearance recalled to my mind Dugald Dalgetty's friends,
the children of the mist.

They appeared nonplussed at seeing no one with me, and at my paying
no attention to them, whilst the valiant Kinchin effectually scared
them from the tent-door. When they requested a parley, I sent the
interpreter to say that I would receive three men, and that only
provided all the rest were sent down immediately; this, as I
anticipated, was acceded to at once, and there remained only the
Lachen Phipun and his brother. Without waiting to let him speak, I
rated him soundly, saying, that I was ready to leave the spot when he
could produce any proof of my being in Bhote (or Cheen), which he
knew well I was not; that, since my arrival at Lachen, he had told me
nothing but lies, and had contravened every order, both of the Rajah
and of Tchebu Lama. I added, that I had given him and his people
kindness and medicine, their return was bad, and he must go about his
business at once, having, as I knew, no food, and I having none for
him. He behaved very humbly throughout, and finally took himself off
much discomfited, and two days afterwards sent men to offer to assist
me in moving my things.

The first of July was such a day as I had long waited for to obtain a
view, and I ascended the mountain west of my camp, to a point where
water boiling at 185.7 degrees (air 42 degrees), gave an elevation of
14,914 feet. On the top of the range, about 1000 feet above this,
there was no snow on the eastern exposures, except in hollows, but on
the west slopes it lay in great fields twenty or thirty feet thick;
while to the north, the mountains all appeared destitute of snow,
with grassy flanks and rugged tops.

Drizzling mist, which had shrouded Tukcham all the morning, soon
gathered on this mountain, and prevented any prospect from the
highest point reached; but on the ascent I had an excellent view up
the Zemu, which opened into a broad grassy valley, where I saw with
the glass some wooden sheds, but no cattle or people. To reach these,
however, involved crossing the river, which was now impossible; and I
reluctantly made up my mind to return on the morrow to Zemu Samdong,
and thence try the other river.

On my descent to the Thlonok, I found that the herbaceous plants on
the terraces had grown fully two feet during the fortnight, and now
presented almost a tropical luxuriance and beauty. Thence I reached
Zemu Samdong in one day, and found the vegetation there even more gay
and beautiful: the gigantic lily was in full flower, and scenting the
air, with the lovely red rose, called "Chirring" by the Tibetans.
_Neillia_ was blossoming profusely at my old camping-ground, to which
I now returned after a month's absence.

Soon after my arrival I received letters from Dr. Campbell, who had
strongly and repeatedly represented to the Rajah his opinion of the
treatment I was receiving; and this finally brought an explicit
answer, to the effect that his orders had been full and peremptory
that I should be supplied with provisions, and safely conducted to
the frontier. With these came letters on the Rajah's part from Tchebu
Lama to the Lachen Phipun, ordering him to take me to the pass, but
not specifying its position; fortunately, however, Dr. Campbell sent
me a route, which stated the pass to be at Kongra Lama, several
marches beyond this, and in the barren country of Tibet.

On the 5th of July the Singtam Soubah arrived from Chola (the Rajah's
summer residence): he was charged to take me to the frontier, and
brought letters from his highness, as well as a handsome present,
consisting of Tibet cloth, and a dress of China silk brocaded with
gold: the Ranee also sent me a basket of Lhassa sweetmeats,
consisting of Sultana raisins from Bokhara, sliced and dried apricots
from Lhassa, and _Diospyros_ fruit from China (called "Gubroon" by
the Tibetans). The Soubah wanted to hurry me on to the frontier and
back at once, being no doubt instigated to do so by the Dewan's
party, and by his having no desire to spend much time in the dreary
lofty regions I wanted to explore. I positively refused, however, to
start until more supplies arrived, except he used his influence to
provide me with food; and as he insisted that the frontier was at
Tallum Samdong, only one march up the Lachen, I foresaw that this
move was to be but one step forward, though in the right direction.
He went forward to Tallum at once, leaving me to follow.

The Lamteng people had all migrated beyond that point to Tungu, where
they were pasturing their cattle: I sent thither for food, and
procured a little meal at a very high price, a few fowls and eggs;
the messenger brought back word that Tungu was in Tibet, and that the
villagers ignored Kongra Lama. A large piece of yak-flesh being
brought for sale, I purchased it; but it proved the toughest meat I
ever ate, being no doubt that of an animal that had succumbed to the
arduous duties of a salt-carrier over the passes: at this season,
however, when the calves are not a month old, it was in vain to
expect better.

Large parties of women and children were daily passing my tent from
Tungu, to collect arum-roots at the Thlonok, all with baskets at
their backs, down to rosy urchins of six years old: they returned
after several days, their baskets neatly lined with broad
rhododendron leaves, and full of a nauseous-looking yellow acid pulp,
which told forcibly of the extreme poverty of the people.
The children were very fair; indeed the young Tibetan is as fair as
an English brunette, before his perennial coat of smoke and dirt has
permanently stained his face, and it has become bronzed and wrinkled
by the scorching sun and rigorous climate of these inhospitable
countries. Children and women were alike decked with roses, and all
were good-humoured and pleasant, behaving with great kindness to one
another, and unaffected politeness to me.

During my ten days' stay at Zemu Samdong, I formed a large collection
of insects, which was in great part destroyed by damp: many were new,
beautiful, and particularly interesting, from belonging to types
whose geographical distribution is analogous to that of the
vegetation. The caterpillar of the swallow-tail butterfly (_Papilio
Machaon_), was common, feeding on umbelliferous plants, as in
England; and a _Sphynx_ (like _S. Euphorbiae_) was devouring the
euphorbias; the English _Cynthia Cardui_ (painted-lady butterfly) was
common, as were "sulphurs," "marbles," _Pontia_ (whites), "blues,"
and _Thecla,_ of British aspect but foreign species. Amongst these,
tropical forms were rare, except one fine black swallow-tail.
Of moths, _Noctuae_ and _Geometrae_ abounded, with many flies and
_Tipulae. Hymenoptera_ were scarce, except a yellow _Ophion,_ which
lays its eggs in the caterpillars above-mentioned. Beetles were most
rare, and (what is remarkable) the wood-borers (_longicorns_ and
_Curculio_) particularly so. A large _Telephora_ was very common, and
had the usual propensity of its congeners for blood; _lamellicorns_
were also abundant.

On the 11th of July five coolies arrived with rice: they had been
twenty days on the road, and had been obliged to make great detours,
the valley being in many places impassable. They brought me a parcel
of English letters; and I started up the Lachen on the following day,
with renewed spirits and high hopes. The road first crossed the Zemu
and the spur beyond, and then ascended the west bank of the Lachen, a
furious torrent for five or six miles, during which it descends 1000
feet, in a chasm from which rise lofty black pine-clad crags, topped
by snowy mountains, 14,000 to 16,000 feet high. One remarkable mass
of rock, on the east bank, is called "Sakya-zong" (or the abode of
Sakya, often pronounced Thakya, one of the Boodhist Trinity); at its
base a fine cascade falls into the river.

Above 11,000 feet the valley expands remarkably, the mountains
recede, become less wooded, and more grassy, while the stream is
suddenly less rapid, meandering in a broader bed, and bordered by
marshes, covered with _Carex, Blysmus,_ dwarf Tamarisk, and many
kinds of yellow and red _Pedicularis,_ both tall and beautiful.
There are far fewer rhododendrons here than in the damper Zemu valley
at equal elevations, and more Siberian, or dry country types of
vegetation, as _Astragali_ of several kinds, _Habenaria, Epipactis,_
dandelion, and a caraway, whose stems (called in Tibet "Gzira") are
much sought for as a condiment.* [_Umbelliferae abound here; with
sage, _Ranunculus, Anemone,_ Aconites, _Halenia,_ Gentians, _Panax,
Euphrasia,_ speedwell, _Prunella vulgaris,_ thistles, bistort,
_Parnassia,_ purple orchis, _Prenanthes,_ and _Lactuca._ The woody
plants of this region are willows, birch, _Cotoneaster,_ maple, three
species of _Viburnum,_ three of _Spiraea, Vaccinium, Aralia, Deutzia,
Philadelphus,_ rhododendrons, two junipers, silver fir, larch, three
honeysuckles, _Neillia,_ and a _Pieris,_ whose white blossoms are so
full of honey as to be sweet and palatable.] The Singtam Soubah and
Lachen Phipun received me at the bridge (Samdong), at Tallum, and led
me across the river (into Cheen they affirmed) to a pretty green
sward, near some gigantic gneiss boulders, where I camped, close by
the river, and 11,480 feet above the sea.

The village of Tallum consists of a few wretched stone huts, placed
in a broad part of the valley, which is swampy, and crossed by
several ancient moraines, which descend from the gulleys on the east
flank.* [I have elsewhere noticed that in Sikkim, the ancient
moraines above 9000 feet are almost invariably deposited from valleys
opening to the westward.] The cottages are from four to six feet
high, without windows, and consist of a single apartment, containing
neither table, chair, stool, nor bed; the inmates huddle together
amid smoke, filth, and darkness, and sleep on a plank; and their only
utensils are a bamboo churn, copper, bamboo, and earthenware vessels,
for milk, butter, etc.

Grassy or stony mountains slope upwards, at an angle of 20 degrees,*
[At Lamteng and up the Zemu the slopes are 40 degrees and 50 degrees,
giving a widely different aspect to the valleys.] from these flats to
15,000 feet, but no snow is visible, except on Kinchinjhow and
Chomiomo, about fifteen miles up the valley. Both these are
flat-topped, and dazzlingly white, rising into small peaks, and
precipitous on all sides; they are grand, bold, isolated masses,
quite unlike the ordinary snowy mountains in form, and far more
imposing even than Kinchinjunga, though not above 22,000 feet
in elevation.

Herbaceous plants are much more numerous here than in any other part
of Sikkim; and sitting at my tent-door, I could, without rising from
the ground, gather forty-three plants,* [In England thirty is, on the
average, the equivalent number of plants, which in favourable
localities I have gathered in an equal space. In both cases many are
seedlings of short-lived annuals, and in neither is the number a test
of the luxuriance of the vegetation; it but shows the power which the
different species exert in their struggle to obtain a place.] of
which all but two belonged to English genera. In the rich soil about
the cottages were crops of dock, shepherd's-purse, _Thlaspi arvense,
Cynoglossum_ of two kinds (one used as a pot-herb), balsams, nettle,
_Galeopsis,_ mustard, radish, and turnip. On the neighbouring hills,
which I explored up to 15,000 feet, I found many fine plants,
partaking more or less of the Siberian type, of which _Corydalis,
Leguminosae, Artemisia,_ and _Pedicularis,_ are familiar instances.
I gathered upwards of 200 species, nearly all belonging to north
European genera. Twenty-five were woody shrubs above three feet high,
and six were ferns; [_Cryptogramma crispa, Davallia,_ two _Aspidia,_
and two _Polypodia._ I gathered ten at the same elevation, in the
damper Zemu valley (see chapter xix, note). I gathered in this valley
a new species of the remarkable European genus _Struthiopteris,_
which has not been found elsewhere in the Himalaya.] sedges were in
great profusion, amongst them three of British kinds: seven or eight
were _Orchideae,_ including a fine _Cypripedium._

The entomology of Tallum, like its botany, was Siberian, Arctic types
occurring at lower elevations than in the wetter parts of Sikkim.
Of beetles the honey-feeding ones prevailed, with European forms of
others that inhabit yak-droppings.* [As _Aphodius_ and _Geotrupes._
Predaceous genera were very rare, as _Carabus_ and _Staphylinus,_ so
typical of boreal regions. _Coccinella_ (lady-bird), which swarms at
Dorjiling, does not ascend so high, and a _Clytus_ was the only
longicorn. _Bupretis, Elater,_ and _Blaps_ were found but rarely.
Of butterflies, the _Machaon_ seldom reaches this elevation, but the
painted-lady, _Pontia, Colias, Hipparchia, Argynnis,_ and
_Polyommatus,_ are all found.] Bees were common, both _Bombus_ and
_Andraena,_ but there were no wasps, and but few ants. Grasshoppers
and other _Orthoptera_ were rare, as were _Hemiptera_; _Tipula_ was
the common dipterous insect, with a small sand-fly: there were
neither leeches, mosquitos, ticks, nor midges. Pigeons, red-legged
crows, and hawks were the common birds; with a few waders in
the marshes.

Being now fairly behind most of the great snow and rain-collecting
mountains, I experienced a considerable change in the climate, which
characterises all these rearward lofty valleys, where very little
rain falls, and that chiefly drizzle; but this is so constant that
the weather feels chilly, raw, and comfortless, and I never returned
dry from botanising. The early mornings were bright with views
northwards of blue sky and Kinchinjhow, while to the south the lofty
peak of Tukcham, though much nearer, was seldom seen, and black
cumuli and nimbi rolled up the steep valley of the Lachen to be
dissipated in mist over Tallum. The sun's rays were, however,
powerful at intervals during the forenoon, whence the mean maximum
temperature of July occurred at about 10 a.m. The temperature of the
river was always high, varying with the heat of the day from 47
degrees to 52 degrees; the mean being 50 degrees.

These streams do not partake of the diurnal rise and fall, so
characteristic of the Swiss rivers and those of the western Himalaya,
where a powerful sun melts the glaciers by day, and their
head-streams are frozen by night. Here the clouds alike prevent solar
and nocturnal radiation, the temperature is more uniform, and the
corroding power of the damp southerly wind that blows strongly
throughout the day is the great melting agent. One morning I saw a
vivid and very beautiful halo 20 degrees distant from the sun's disc;
it was no doubt caused by snow in the higher regions of the
atmosphere, as a sharp shower of rain fell immediately afterwards:
these are rare phenomena in mountainous countries.

The Singtam Soubah visited me daily, and we enjoyed long friendly
conversations: he still insisted that the Yangchoo (the name he gave
to the Lachen at this place) was the boundary, and that I must not go
any further. His first question was always "How long do you intend to
remain here? have you not got all the plants and stones you want? you
can see the sun much better with those brasses and glasses* [Alluding
to the sextant, etc.] lower down; it is very cold here, and there is
no food:"--to all which I had but one reply, that I should not return
till I had visited Kongra Lama. He was a portly man, and, I think, at
heart good-natured: I had no difficulty in drawing him on to talk
about Tibet, and the holy city of Teshoo Loombo, with its thousands
of gilt temples, nunneries, and convents, its holiest of all the holy
grand Lamas of Tibet, and all the wide Boodhist world besides. Had it
even been politic, I felt it would be unfair to be angry with a man
who was evidently in a false position between myself and his two
rulers, the Rajah and Dewan; who had a wife and family on the smiling
flanks of Singtam, and who longed to be soaking in the warm rain of
Sikkim, drinking Murwa beer (a luxury unknown amongst these Tibetans)
and gathering in his crops of rice, millet, and buckwheat. Though I
may owe him a grudge for his subsequent violence, I still recall with
pleasure the hours we spent together on the banks of the Lachen.
In all matters respecting the frontier, his lies were circumstantial;
and he further took the trouble of bringing country people to swear
that this was Cheen, and that there was no such place as Kongra Lama.
I had written to ask Dr. Campbell for a definite letter from Tchebu
Lama on this point, but unfortunately my despatches were lost; the
messenger who conveyed them missed his footing in crossing the
Lachen, and escaped narrowly with life, while the turban in which the
letters were placed was carried down the current.

Finally the Soubah tried to persuade my people that one so
incorrigibly obstinate must be mad, and that they had better leave
me. One day, after we had had a long discussion about the geography
of the frontier, he inflamed my curiosity by telling me that
Kinchinjhow was a very holy mountain; more so than its sister-peaks
of Chumulari and Kinchinjunga; and that both the Sikkim and Tibetan
Lamas, and Chinese soldiers, were ready to oppose my approach to it.
This led to my asking him for a sketch of the mountains; he called
for a large sheet of paper, and some charcoal, and wanted to form his
mountains of sand; I however ordered rice to be brought, and though
we had but little, scattered it about wastefully. This had its
effect: he stared at my wealth, for he had all along calculated on
starving me out, and retired, looking perplexed and crestfallen.
Nothing puzzled him so much as my being always occupied with such, to
him, unintelligible pursuits; a Tibetan "cui bono?" was always in his
mouth: "What good will it do _you_?" "Why should you spend weeks on
the coldest, hungriest, windiest, loftiest place on the earth,
without even inhabitants?" Drugs and idle curiosity he believed were
my motives, and possibly a reverence for the religion of Boodh,
Sakya, and Tsongkaba. Latterly he had made up his mind to starve me
out, and was dismayed when he found I could hold out better than
himself, and when I assured him that I should not retrace my steps
until his statements should be verified by a letter from Tchebu; that
I had written to him, and that it would be at least thirty days
before I could receive an answer.

On the 19th of July he proposed to take me to Tungu, at the foot of
Kinchinjhow, and back, upon ponies, provided I would leave my people
and tent, which I refused to do. After this I saw little of him for
several days, and began to fear he was offended, when one morning his
attendant came to me for medicine with a dismal countenance, and in
great alarm: he twisted his fingers together over his stomach to
symbolise the nature of the malady which produced a commotion in his
master's bowels, and which was simply the colic. I was aware that he
had been reduced to feed upon "Tong" (the arum-root) and herbs, and
had always given him half the pigeons I shot, which was almost the
only animal food I had myself. Now I sent him a powerful dose of
medicine; adding a few spoonfuls of China tea and sugar
for friendship.

On the 22nd, being convalescent, he visited me, looking wofully
yellow. After a long pause, during which he tried to ease himself of
some weighty matter, he offered to take me to Tungu with my tent and
people, and, thence to Kongra Lama, if I would promise to stay but
two nights. I asked whether Tungu was in Cheen or Sikkim; he replied
that after great enquiry he had heard that it was really in Sikkim;
"Then," said I, "we will both go to-morrow morning to Tungu, and I
will stay there as long as I please:" he laughed, and gave in with
apparent good grace.

After leaving Tallum, the valley contracts, passing over great
ancient moraines, and again expanding wider than before into broad
grassy flats. The vegetation rapidly diminishes in stature and
abundance, and though the ascent to Tungu is trifling, the change in
species is very great. The _Spiraea,_ maple, _Pieris,_ cherry, and
larch disappear, leaving only willow, juniper, stunted birch, silver
fir, white rose, _Aralia,_ berberry, currant, and more rhododendrons
than all these put together;* [_Cyananthus,_ a little blue flower
allied to _Campanula,_ and one of the most beautiful alpines I know,
covered the turfy ground, with _Orchis, Pedicularis, Gentian,
Potentilla, Geranium,_ purple and yellow _Meconopsis,_ and the
_Artemisia_ of Dorjiling, which ascends to 12,000 feet, and descends
to the plains, having a range of 11,500 feet in elevation. Of ferns,
_Hymenophyllum, Cistopteris,_ and _Cryptogramma crispa_ ascend thus
high.] while mushrooms and other English fungi* [One of great size,
growing in large clumps, is the English _Agaricus comans,_ Fr., and I
found it here at 12,500 feet, as also the beautiful genus
_Crucibulum,_ which is familiar to us in England, growing on rotten
sticks, and resembling a diminutive bird's nest with eggs in it.]
grew amongst the grass.

Illustration--TUNGU VILLAGE.

Tungu occupies a very broad valley, at the junction of the Tungu-choo
from the east, and the Lachen from the north. The hills slope gently
upwards to 16,000 feet, at an average angle of 15 degrees; they are
flat and grassy at the base, and no snow is anywhere to be seen.* [In
the wood-cut the summit of Chomiomo is introduced, as it appears from
a few hundred feet above the point of view.] A stupendous rock, about
fifty feet high, lay in the middle of the valley, broken in two: it
may have been detached from a cliff, or have been transported thither
as part of an ancient moraine which extends from the mouth of the
Tungu-choo valley across that of the Lachen. The appearance and
position of this great block, and of the smaller piece lying beside
it, rather suggest the idea of the whole mass having fallen
perpendicularly from a great height through a crevasse in a glacier,
than of its having been hurled from so considerable a distance as
from the cliffs on the flanks of the valley: it is faithfully
represented in the accompanying woodcut. A few wooden houses were
collected near this rock, and several black tents were scattered
about. I encamped at an elevation of 12,750 feet, and was waited on
by the Lachen Phipun with presents of milk, butter, yak-flesh, and
curds; and we were not long before we drowned old enmity in buttered
and salted tea.

On my arrival I found the villagers in a meadow, all squatted
cross-legged in a circle, smoking their brass and iron pipes,
drinking tea, and listening to a letter from the Rajah, concerning
their treatment of me. Whilst my men were pitching my tent, I
gathered forty plants new to me, all of Tartarian types.* [More
Siberian plants appeared, as _Astragali, Chenopodium, Artemisia,_
some grasses, new kinds of _Pedicularis, Delphinium,_ and some small
Orchids. Three species of _Parnassia_ and six primroses made the turf
gay, mixed with saxifrages, _Androsace_ and _Campanula._ By the
cottages was abundance of shepherd's-purse, _Lepidium,_ and balsams,
with dock, _Galeopsis,_ and _Cuscuta._ Several low dwarf species of
honeysuckle formed stunted bushes like heather; and _Anisodus,_ a
curious plant allied to _Hyoscyamus,_ whose leaves are greedily eaten
by yaks, was very common.] Wheat or barley I was assured had been
cultivated at Tungu when it was possessed by Tibetans, and inhabited
by a frontier guard, but I saw no appearance of any cultivation.
The fact is an important one, as barley requires a mean summer
temperature of 48 degrees to come to maturity. According to my
observations, the mean temperature of Tungu in July is upwards of 50
degrees, and, by calculation, that of the three summer months, June,
July, and August, should be about 46.5 degrees. As, however, I do not
know whether these cerealia were grown as productive crops, much
stress cannot be laid upon the fact of their having been cultivated,
for in a great many parts of Tibet the barley is annually cut green
for fodder.

In the evening the sick came to me: their complaints, as usual, being
rheumatism, ophthalmia, goitres, cuts, bruises, and poisoning by Tong
(_Arum_), fungi, and other deleterious vegetables. At Tallum I
attended an old woman who dressed her ulcers with _Plantago_
(plantain) leaves, a very common Scotch remedy; the ribs being drawn
out from the leaf, which is applied fresh: it is rather a
strong application.

On the following morning I was awakened by the shrill cries of the
Tibetan maidens, calling the yaks to be milked, "Toosh--toosh--
toooosh," in a gradually higher key; to which Toosh seemed supremely
indifferent, till quickened in her movements by a stone or stick,
levelled with unerring aim at her ribs; these animals were changing
their long winter's wool for sleek hair, and the former hung about
them in ragged masses, like tow. Their calves gambolled by their
sides, the drollest of animals, like ass-colts in their antics,
kicking up their short hind-legs, whisking their bushy tails in the
air, rushing up and down the grassy slopes, and climbing like cats to
the top of the rocks.

The Soubah and Phipun came early to take me to Kongra Lama, bringing
ponies, genuine Tartars in bone and breed. Remembering the Dewan's
impracticable saddle at Bhomsong, I stipulated for a horse-cloth or
pad, upon which I had no sooner jumped than the beast threw back his
ears, seated himself on his haunches, and, to my consternation, slid
backwards down a turfy slope, pawing the earth with his fore-feet as
he went, and leaving me on the ground, amid shrieks of laughter from
my Lepchas. My steed being caught, I again mounted, and was being led
forward, when he took to shaking himself like a dog till the pad
slipped under his belly, and I was again unhorsed. Other ponies
displayed equal prejudices against my mode of riding, or having my
weight anywhere but well on their shoulders, being all-powerful in
their fore-quarters; and so I was compelled to adopt the high
demi-pique saddle with short stirrups, which forced me to sit with my
knees up to my nose, and to grip with the calves of my legs and
heels. All the gear was of yak or horse-hair, and the bit was a curb
and ring, or a powerful twisted snaffle..

The path ran N.N.W. for two miles, and then crossed the Lachen above
its junction with the Nunee* [I suspect there is a pass by the Nunee
to the sheds I saw up the Zemu valley on the 2nd of July, as I
observed yaks grazing high up the mountains: the distance cannot be
great, and there is little or no snow to interfere.] from the west:
the stream was rapid, and twelve yards in breadth; its temperature
was 48 degrees. About six miles above Tungu, the Lachen is joined by
the Chomio-choo, a large affluent from Chomiomo mountain. Above this
the Lachen meanders along a broad stony bed; and the path rises over
a great ancient moraine, whose level top is covered with pools, but
both that and its south face are bare, from exposure to the south
wind, which blows with fury through this contracted part of the
valley to the rarified atmosphere of the lofty, open, and dry country
beyond. Its north slope, on the contrary, is covered with small trees
and brushwood, rhododendron, birch, honeysuckle, and mountain-ash.
These are the most northern shrubs in Sikkim, and I regarded them
with deep interest, as being possibly the last of their kind to be
met with in this meridian, for many degrees further north: perhaps
even no similar shrubs occur between this and the Siberian Altai, a
distance of 1,500 miles. The magnificent yellow cowslip (_Primula
Sikkimensis_) gilded the marshes, and _Caltha,_* [This is the
_C. scaposa,_ n. sp. The common _Caltha palustris,_ or "marsh
marigold" of England, which is not found in Sikkim, is very abundant
in the north-west Himalaya.] _Trollius,_ Anemone, _Arenaria, Draba,_
Saxifrages, Potentillas, Ranunculus, and other very alpine
plants abounded.

At the foot of the moraine was a Tibetan camp of broad, black,
yak-hair tents, stretched out with a complicated system of ropes, and
looking at a distance--(to borrow M. Huc's graphic simile)--like
fat-bodied, long-legged spiders! Their general shape is hexagonal,
about twelve feet either way, and they are stretched over six short
posts, and encircled with a low stone wall, except in front. In one
of them I found a buxom girl, the image of good humour, making butter
and curd from yak-milk. The churns were of two kinds; one being an
oblong box of birch-bark, or close bamboo wicker-work, full of
branched rhododendron twigs, in which the cream is shaken: she
good-naturedly showed me the inside, which was frosted with
snow-white butter, and alive with maggots. The other churn was a
goat-skin, which was rolled about, and shaken by the four legs.
The butter is made into great squares, and packed in yak-hair cloths;
the curd is eaten either fresh, or dried and pulverised (when it is
called "Ts'cheuzip").

Except bamboo and copper milk-vessels, wooden ladles, tea-churn, and
pots, these tents contained no furniture but goat-skins and blankets,
to spread on the ground as a bed. The fire was made of sheep and
goats'-droppings, lighted with juniper-wood; above it hung tufts of
yaks'-hair, one for every animal lost during the season,* [The
Siberians hang tufts of horse-hair inside their houses from
superstitious motives (Ermann's "Siberia," i., 281).] by which means
a reckoning is kept. Although this girl had never before seen a
European, she seemed in no way discomposed at my visit, and gave me a
large slice of fresh curd.

Beyond this place (alt. 14,500 feet), the valley runs up north-east,
becoming very stony and desolate, with green patches only by the
watercourses: at this place, however, thick fogs came on, and
obscured all view. At 15,000 feet, I passed a small glacier on the
west side of the valley, the first I had met with that descended
nearly to the river, during the whole course of the Teesta.

Five miles further on we arrived at the tents of the Phipun, whose
wife was prepared to entertain us with Tartar hospitality:
magnificent tawny Tibet mastiffs were baying at the tent-door, and
some yaks and ponies were grazing close by. We mustered twelve in
number, and squatted cross-legged in a circle inside the tent, the
Soubah and myself being placed on a pretty Chinese rug. Salted and
buttered tea was immediately prepared in a tea-pot for us on the mat,
and in a great caldron for the rest of the party; parched rice and
wheat-flour, curd, and roasted maize* [Called "pop-corn" in America,
and prepared by roasting the maize in an iron vessel, when it splits
and turns partly inside out, exposing a snow-white spongy mass of
farina. It looks very handsome, and would make a beautiful dish for
dessert.] were offered us, and we each produced our wooden cup, which
was kept constantly full of scalding tea-soup, which, being made with
fresh butter, was very good. The flour was the favourite food, of
which each person dexterously formed little dough-balls in his cup,
an operation I could not well manage, and only succeeded in making a
nauseous paste, that stuck to my jaws and in my throat. Our hostess'
hospitality was too _exigeant_ for me, but the others seemed as if
they could not drink enough of the scalding tea.

We were suddenly startled from our repast by a noise like loud
thunder, crash following crash, and echoing through the valley.
The Phipun got up, and coolly said, "The rocks are falling, it is
time we were off, it will rain soon." The moist vapours had by this
time so accumulated, as to be condensed in rain on the cliffs of
Chomiomo and Kinchinjhow; which, being loosened, precipitated
avalanches of rocks and snow. We proceeded amidst dense fog, soon
followed by hard rain; the roar of falling rocks on either hand
increasing as these invisible giants spoke to one another in voices
of thunder through the clouds. The effect was indescribably grand:
and as the weather cleared, and I obtained transient peeps of their
precipices of blue ice and black rock towering 5000 feet above me on
either hand, the feeling of awe produced was almost overpowering.
Heavy banks of vapour still veiled the mountains, but the rising mist
exposed a broad stony track, along which the Lachen wandered, split
into innumerable channels, and enclosing little oases of green
vegetation, lighted up by occasional gleams of sunshine. Though all
around was enveloped in gloom, there was in front a high blue arc of
cloudless sky, between the beetling cliffs that formed the stern
portals of the Kongra Lama pass.


Top of Kongra Lama -- Tibet frontier -- Elevation -- View --
Vegetation -- Descent to Tungu -- Tungu-choo -- Ponies -- Kinchinjhow
and Changokhang mountains -- Palung plains -- Tibetans -- Dogs --
Dingcbam province of Tibet -- Inhabitants -- Dresses -- Women's
ornaments -- Blackening faces -- Coral -- Tents -- Elevation of
Palung -- Lama -- Shawl-wool goats -- Shearing -- Siberian plants --
Height of glaciers, and perpetual snow -- Geology -- Plants, and wild
animals -- Marmots -- Insects -- Birds -- Choongtam Lama -- Religious
exercises -- Tibetan hospitality -- _Delphinium_ -- Perpetual snow --
Temperature at Tungu -- Return to Tallum Samdong -- To Lamteng --
Houses -- Fall of Barometer -- Cicadas -- Lime deposit -- Landslips
-- Arrival at Choongtam -- Cobra -- Rageu -- Heat of Climate --
Velocity and volume of rivers measured -- Leave for Lachoong valley
-- Keadom -- General features of valley -- Lachoong village -- Tunkra
mountain -- Moraines -- Cultivation -- Lachoong Phipun -- Lama
ceremonies beside a sick-bed.

We reached the boundary between Sikkim and Tibet early in the
afternoon; it is drawn along Kongra Lama, which is a low flat spur
running east from Kinchinjhow towards Chomiomo, at a point where
these mountains are a few miles apart, thus crossing the Lachen
river:* [The upper valley of the Lachen in Tibet, which I ascended in
the following October, is very open, flat, barren, and stony; it is
bounded on the north by rounded spurs from Chomiomo, which are
continued east to Donkia, forming a watershed to the Lachen on the
south, and to the Arun on the north.] it is marked by cairns of
stone, some rudely fashioned into chaits, covered with votive rags on
wands of bamboo. I made the altitude by barometer 15,745 feet above
the sea, and by boiling water, 15,694 feet, the water boiling at
184.1 degrees; the temperature of the air between 2.40 and 4 p.m.
varied from 41.3 degrees to 42.5 degrees, the dew-point 39.8 degrees;
that of the Lachen was 47 degrees, which was remarkably high. We were
bitterly cold; as the previous rain had wetted us through, and a keen
wind was blowing up the valley. The continued mist and fog
intercepted all view, except of the flanks of the great mountains on
either hand, of the rugged snowy ones to the south, and of those
bounding the Lachen to the north. The latter were unsnowed, and
appeared lower than Kongra Lama, the ground apparently sloping away
in that direction; but when I ascended them, three months afterwards,
I found they were 3000 feet higher! a proof how utterly fallacious
are estimates of height, when formed by the eye alone. My informants
called them Peuka-t'hlo; "peu" signifies north in Tibetan, and
"t'hlo" a hill in Lepcha.

Isolated patches of vegetation appeared on the top of the pass, where
I gathered forty kinds of plants, most of them being of a tufted
habit characteristic of an extreme climate; some (as species of
_Caryophylleae_) forming hemi-spherical balls on the naked soil;
others* [The other plants found on the pass were; of smooth hairless
ones, _Ranunculus,_ Fumitory, several species of _Stellaria,
Arenaria, Cruciferae, Parnassia, Morina,_ saxifrages, _Sedum,_
primrose, _Herminium, Polygonum, Campanula, Umbelliferae,_ grasses
and _Carices_: of woolly or hairy once, _Anemone, Artemisia,
Myosotis, Draba, Potentilla,_ and several _Compositae,_ etc.] growing
in matted tufts level with the ground. The greater portion had no
woolly covering; nor did I find any of the cottony species of
_Saussurea,_ which are so common on the wetter mountains to the
southward. Some most delicate-flowered plants even defy the biting
winds of these exposed regions; such are a prickly _Meconopsis_ with
slender flower-stalks and four large blue poppy-like petals, a
_Cyananthus_ with a membranous bell-shaped corolla, and a fritillary.
Other curious plants were a little yellow saxifrage with long runners
(very like the arctic _S. flagellaris,_ of Spitzbergen and Melville
Island), and the strong-scented spikenard (_Nardostachys_).

The rocks were chiefly of reddish quartz, and so was the base of
Chomiomo. Kinchinjhow on the contrary was of gneiss, with granite
veins: the strike of both was north-west, and the dip north-east 20
degrees to 30 degrees.

We made a fire at the top with sheep's droppings, of which the Phipun
had brought up a bagfull, and with it a pair of goat-skin bellows,
which worked by a slit that was opened by the hand in the act of
raising; when inflated, the hole was closed, and the skin pressed
down, thus forcing the air through the bamboo nozzle: this is the
common form of bellows throughout Tibet and the Himalaya.

After two hours I was very stiff and cold, and suffering from
headache and giddiness, owing to the elevation; and having walked
about thirteen miles botanizing, I was glad to ride down. We reached
the Phipun's tents about 6 p.m., and had more tea before proceeding
to Tungu. The night was fortunately fine and calm, with a few stars
and a bright young moon, which, with the glare from the snows,
lighted up the valley, and revealed magnificent glimpses of the
majestic mountains. As the moon sank, and we descended the narrowing
valley, darkness came on, and with a boy to lead my sure-footed pony,
I was at liberty uninterruptedly to reflect on the events of a day,
on which I had attained the object of so many years' ambition.
Now that all obstacles were surmounted, and I was returning laden
with materials for extending the knowledge of a science which had
formed the pursuit of my life, will it be wondered at that I felt
proud, not less for my own sake, than for that of the many friends,
both in India and at home, who were interested in my success?

We arrived at Tungu at 9 p.m., my pony not having stumbled once,
though the path was rugged, and crossed by many rapid streams.
The Soubah's little shaggy steed had carried his portly frame (fully
fifteen stone weight) the whole way out and back, and when he
dismounted, it shook itself, snorted, and seemed quite ready
for supper.

On the following morning I was occupied in noting and arranging my
collections, which consisted of upwards of 200 plants; all gathered
above 14,000 feet elevation.* [Amongst them the most numerous Natural
orders and genera were, _Cruciferae_ 10; _Compositae_ 20;
_Ranunculaceae_ 10; _Alsineae_ 9; _Astragali_ 10; _Potentillae_ 8;
grasses 12; _Carices_ 15; _Pedicularis_ 7; _Boragineae_ 7.] Letters
arrived from Dorjiling with unusual speed, having been only seventeen
days on the road: they were full of valuable suggestions and
encouragement from my friends Hodgson, Campbell, and Tchebu Lama.

On the 26th of July the Phipun, who waited on me every morning with
milk and butter, and whose civility and attentions were now
unremitting, proposed that I should accompany him to an encampment of
Tibetans, at the foot of Kinchinjhow. We mounted ponies, and ascended
the Tunguchoo eastwards: it was a rapid river for the first thousand
feet, flowing in a narrow gorge, between sloping, grassy, and rocky
hills, on which large herds of yaks were feeding, tended by women and
children, whose black tents were scattered about. The yak-calves left
their mothers to run beside our ponies, which became unmanageable,
being almost callous to the bit; and the whole party was sometimes
careering over the slopes, chased by the grunting herds: in other
places, the path was narrow and dangerous, when the sagacious animals
proceeded with the utmost gravity and caution. Rounding one rocky
spur, my pony stumbled, and pitched me forward: fortunately I lighted
on the path.

The rocks were gneiss, with granite veins (strike north-east, dip
south-east): they were covered with _Ephedra,_* [A curious genus of
small shrubs allied to pines, that grows in the south of Europe.
This species is the European _E. vulgaris_; it inhabits the driest
parts of north-west India, and ascends to 17,000 feet in Tibet, but
is not found in the moist intervening countries.] an _Onosma_ which
yields a purple dye, _Orchis,_ and species of _Androsace_; while the
slopes were clothed with the spikenard and purple _Pedicularis,_ and
the moist grounds with yellow cowslip and long grass. A sudden bend
in the valley opened a superb view to the north, of the full front of
Kinchinjhow, extending for four or five miles east and west; its
perpendicular sides studded with the immense icicles, which are said
to have obtained for it the name of "jhow,"--the "bearded" Kinchin.
Eastward a jagged spur stretches south, rising into another splendid
mountain, called Chango-khang (the Eagle's crag), from whose flanks
descend great glaciers, the sources of the Tunguchoo.

We followed the course of an affluent, called the Chachoo, along
whose bed ancient moraines rose in successive ridges: on these I
found several other species of European genera.* [_Delphinium,
Hypecoum, Sagina, Gymnandra, Artemisia, Caltha, Dracocephalum,
Leontopodium._] Over one of these moraines, 500 feet high, the path
ascends to the plains of Palung, an elevated grassy expanse, two
miles long and four broad, extending southward from the base of
Kinchinjhow. Its surface, though very level for so mountainous a
country, is yet varied with open valleys and sloping hills, 500 to
700 feet high: it is bounded on the west by low rounded spurs from
Kinchinjhow, that form the flank of the Lachen valley; while on the
east it is separated from Chango-khang by the Chachoo, which cuts a
deep east and west trench along the base of Kinchinjhow, and then
turns south to the Tunguchoo. The course of the Chachoo, where it
turns south, is most curious: it meanders in sickle-shaped curves
along the marshy bottom of an old lake-bed, with steep shelving
sides, 500 to 600 feet deep, and covered with juniper bushes.*
[These, which grow on an eastern exposure, exist at a higher
elevation than any other bushes I have met with.] It is fed by the
glaciers of Kinchinjhow, and some little lakes to the east.

The mean height of Palung plains is 16,000 feet: they are covered
with transported blocks, and I have no doubt their surface has been
much modified by glacial action. I was forcibly reminded of them by
the slopes of the Wengern Alp, but those of Palung are far more
level. Kinchinjhow rises before the spectator, just as the Jungfrau,
Monch, and Eigher Alps do from that magnificent point of view.

On ascending a low hill, we came in sight of the Tibet camp at the
distance of a mile, when the great mastiffs that guarded it
immediately bayed; and our ponies starting off at full gallop, we
soon reached an enclosure of stone dykes, within which the black
tents were pitched. The dogs were of immense size, and ragged, like
the yaks, from their winter coat hanging to their flanks in great
masses; each was chained near a large stone, on and off which he
leapt as he gave tongue; they are very savage, but great cowards, and
not remarkable for intelligence.


The people were natives of Gearee and Kambajong, in the adjacent
province of Dingcham, which is the loftiest, coldest, most windy and
arid in Eastern Tibet; and in which are the sources of all the
streams that flow to Nepal; Sikkim, and Bhotan on the one side, and
into the Yaru-tsampu on the other. These families repair yearly to
Palung, with their flocks, herds, and tents, paying tribute to the
Sikkim Rajah for the privilege: they arrive in June and leave in
September. Both men and women were indescribably filthy; as they
never wash, their faces were perfectly black with smoke and exposure,
and the women's with a pigment of grease as a protection from the
wind. The men were dressed as usual, in the blanket-cloak, with brass
pipes, long knives, flint, steel, and amulets; the women wore
similar, but shorter cloaks, with silver and copper girdles,
trowsers, and flannel boots. Their head-dresses were very remarkable.
A circular band of plaited yak's hair was attached to the back hair,
and encircled the head like a saint's glory,* [I find in Ermann's
"Siberia" (i., p. 210), that the married women of Yekaterinberg wear
a head-dress like an ancient glory covered with jewels, whilst the
unmarried ones plait their tresses. The same distinguished traveller
mentions having seen a lad of six years old suckled, amongst the
Tungooze of East Siberia.] at some distance round it. A band crossed
the forehead, from which coins, corals, and turquoises, hung down to
the eyebrows, while lappets of these ornaments fell over the ears.
Their own hair was plaited in two tails, brought over the shoulders,
and fastened together in front; and a little yellow felt cap,
traversely elongated, so as not to interfere with the shape of the
glory, was perched on the head. Their countenances were pleasing, and
their manners timid.

The children crawled half-naked about the tent, or burrowed like
moles in an immense heap of goats' and sheep-droppings, piled up for
fuel, upon which the family lounged. An infant in arms was playing
with a "coral," ornamented much like ours, and was covered with
jewels and coins. This custom of decorating children is very common
amongst half-civilised people; and the coral is, perhaps, one of the
last relics of a barbarous age that is retained amongst ourselves.
One mother was nursing her baby, and churning at the same time, by
rolling the goat-skin of yak-milk about on the ground. Extreme
poverty induces the practice of nursing the children for years; and
in one tent I saw a lad upwards of four years of age unconcernedly
taking food from his aunt, and immediately afterwards chewing hard
dry grains of maize.

The tents were pitched in holes about two feet and a half deep; and
within them a wall of similar height was built all round: in the
middle was a long clay arched fire-place, with holes above, over
which the cauldrons were placed, the fire being underneath. Saddles,
horse-cloths, and the usual accoutrements and implements of a nomade
people, all of the rudest description, hung about: there was no bed
or stool, but Chinese rugs for sleeping on. I boiled water on the
fire-place; its temperature (184.5 degrees) with that of the air
(45.5 degrees) gave an elevation of 15,867 feet. Barometric
observations, taken in October, at a point considerably lower down
the stream, made the elevation 15,620 feet, or a few feet lower than
Kongra Lama pass.

A Lama accompanied this colony of Tibetans, a festival in honour of
Kinchinjhow being annually held at a large chait hard by, which is
painted red, ornamented with banners, and surmounted by an enormous
yak's skull, that faces the mountain. The Lama invited me into his
tent, where I found a wife and family. An extempore altar was at one
end, covered with wafers and other pretty ornaments, made of butter,
stamped or moulded with the fingers.* [The extensive use of these
ornaments throughout Tibet, on the occasion of religious festivals,
is alluded to by MM. Huc and Gabet.] The tents being insupportably
noisome, I preferred partaking of the buttered brick-tea in the open
air; after which, I went to see the shawl-wool goats sheared in a pen
close by. There are two varieties: one is a large animal, with great
horns, called "Rappoo;"* [This is the "Changra;" and the smaller the
"Chyapu" of Mr. Hodgson's catalogue. (See "British Museum
Catalogue.")] the other smaller, and with slender horns, is called
"Tsilloo." The latter yields the finest wool, but they are mixed for
ordinary purposes. I was assured that the sheep (of which large
flocks were grazing near) afford the finest wool of any. The animals
were caught by the tail, their legs tied, the long winter's hair
pulled out, and the remainder cut away with a broad flat knife, which
was sharpened with a scythe-stone. The operation was clumsily
performed, and the skin much cut.

Turnips are grown at Palung during the short stay of the people, and
this is the most alpine cultivation in Sikkim: the seed is sown early
in July, and the tubers are fit to be eaten in October, if the season
is favourable. They did not come to maturity this year, as I found on
again visiting this spot in October; but their tops had afforded the
poor Tibetans some good vegetables. The mean temperature of the three
summer months at Palung is probably about 40 degrees, an element of
comparatively little importance in regulating the growth and ripening
of vegetables at great elevations in Tibetan climates; where a warm
exposure, the amount of sunshine, and of radiated heat, have a much
greater influence.

During the winter, when these families repair to Kambajong, in Tibet,
the flocks and herds are all stall-fed, with long grass, cut on the
marshy banks of the Yaru. Snow is said to fall five feet deep at that
place, chiefly after January; and it melts in April.

After tea, I ascended the hills overhanging the Lachen valley, which
are very bare and stony; large flocks of sheep were feeding on them,
chiefly upon small tufted sedges, allied to the English _Carex
pilularis,_ which here forms the greatest part of the pasture: the
grass grows mixed with it in small tufts, and is the common Scotch
mountain pasture-grass (_Festuca ovina_).

On the top of these hills, which, for barrenness, reminded me of the
descriptions given of the Siberian steppes, I found, at 17,000 feet
elevation, several minute arctic plants, with _Rhododendron nivale,_
the most alpine of woody plants. On their sterile slopes grew a
curious plant allied to the _Cherleria_ of the Scotch Alps, forming
great hemispherical balls on the ground, eight to ten inches across,
altogether resembling in habit the curious Balsambog (_Bolax
glebaria_) of the Falkland Islands, which grows in very similar
scenes.* [_Arenaria rupifraga,_ Fenzl. This plant is mentioned by Dr.
Thomson ("Travels in Tibet," p. 426) as common in Tibet, as far north
as the Karakoram, at an elevation between 16,000 and 18,000 feet. In
Sikkim it is found at the same level. Specimens of it are exhibited
in the Kew Museum. As one instance illustrative of the chaotic state
of Indian botany, I may here mention that this little plant, a
denizen of such remote and inaccessible parts of the globe, and which
has only been known to science a dozen years, bears the burthen of no
less than six names in botanical works. This is the _Bryomorpha
rupifraga_ of Karelin and Kireloff (enumeration of Soongarian
plants), who first described it from specimens gathered in 1841, on
the Alatau mountains (east of Lake Aral). In Ledebour's "Flora
Rossica" (i. p. 780) it appears as _Arenaria_ (sub-genus
_Dicranilla_) _rupifraga,_ Fenzl, MS. In Decaisne and Cambessede's
Plants of Jacquemont's "Voyage aus Indes Orientales," it is described
as _Flourensia caespitosa,_ and in the plates of that work it appears
as _Periandra caespitosa_; and lastly, in Endlicher's "Genera
Plantarum," Fenzl proposes the long new generic name of
_Thylacospermum_ for it. I have carefully compared the Himalayan and
Alatau plants, and find no difference between them, except that the
flower of the Himalayan one has 4 petals and sepals, 8 stamens, and 2
styles, and that of the Alatau 5 petals and sepals, 10 stamens, and
2-3 styles, characters which are very variable in allied plants.
The flowers appear polygamous, as in the Scotch alpine _Cherleria,_
which it much resembles in babit, and to which it is very nearly
related in botanical characters.]

A few days afterwards, I again visited Palung, with the view of
ascertaining the height of perpetual snow on the south face of
Kinchinjhow; unfortunately, bad weather came on before I reached the
Tibetans, from whom I obtained a guide in consequence. From this
place a ride of about four miles brought me to the source of the
Chachoo, in a deep ravine, containing the terminations of several
short, abrupt glaciers,* [De Saussure's glaciers of the second order:
see "Forbes' Travels in the Alps," p. 79.] and into which were
precipitated avalanches of snow and ice. I found it impossible to
distinguish the glacial ice from perpetual snow; the larger beds of
snow where presenting a flat surface, being generally drifts
collected in hollows, or accumulations that have fallen from above:
when these accumulations rest on slopes they become converted into
ice, and obeying the laws of fluidity, flow downwards as glaciers.
I boiled water at the most advantageous position I could select, and
obtained an elevation of 16,522 feet.* [Temperature of boiling water,
183 degrees, air 35 degrees.] It was snowing heavily at this time,
and we crouched under a gigantic boulder, benumbed with cold. I had
fortunately brought a small phial of brandy, which, with hot water
from the boiling-apparatus kettle, refreshed us wonderfully.

The spur that divides these plains from the Lachen river, rises close
to Kinchinjhow, as a lofty cliff of quartzy gneiss, dipping
north-east 30 degrees: this I had noticed from the Kongra Lama side.
On this side the dip was also to the northward, and the whole cliff
was crossed by cleavage planes, dipping south, and apparently cutting
those of the foliation at an angle of about 60 degrees: it is the
only decided instance of the kind I met with in Sikkim. I regretted
not being able to examine it carefully, but I was prevented by the
avalanches of stones and snow which were continually being detached
from its surface.* [I extremely regret not having been at this time
acquainted with Mr. D. Sharpe's able essays on the foliation,
cleavage, etc., of slaty rocks, gneiss, etc., in the Geological
Society's Journal (ii. p. 74, and v. p. 111), and still more so with
his subsequent papers in the Philosophical Transactions: as I cannot
doubt that many of his observations, and in particular those which
refer to the great arches in which the folia (commonly called strata)
are disposed, would receive ample illustration from a study of the
Himalaya. At vol. i. chapter xiii, I have distantly alluded to such
an arrangement of the gneiss, etc., into arches, in Sikkim, to which
my attention was naturally drawn by the writings of Professor
Sedgwick ("Geolog. Soc. Trans.") and Mr. Darwin ("Geological
Observations in South America") on these obscure subjects. I may add
that wherever I met with the gneiss, mica, schists, and slates, in
Sikkim, very near one another, I invariably found that their cleavage
and foliation were conformable. This, for example, may be seen in the
bed of the great Rungeet, below Dorjiling, where the slates overlie
mica schists, and where the latter contain beds of conglomerate. In
these volumes I have often used the more familiar term of
stratification, for foliation. This arises from my own ideas of the
subject not having been clear when the notes were taken.]

The plants found close to the snow were minute primroses, _Parnassia,
Draba,_ tufted wormwoods (_Artemisia_), saxifrages, gentian, small
_Compositae,_ grasses, and sedges. Our ponies unconcernedly scraped
away the snow with their hoofs, and nibbled the scanty herbage.
When  I mounted mine, he took the bit between his teeth, and
scampered back to Palung, over rocks and hills, through bogs and
streams; and though the snow was so blinding that no object could be
distinguished, he brought me to the tents with unerring instinct, as
straight as an arrow.

Wild animals are few in kind and rare in individuals, at Tungu and
elsewhere on this frontier; though there is no lack of cover and
herbage. This must be owing to the moist cold atmosphere; and it
reminds me that a similar want of animal life is characteristic of
those climates at the level of the sea, which I have adduced as
bearing a great analogy to the Himalaya, in lacking certain natural
orders of plants. Thus, New Zealand and Fuegia possess, the former no
land animal but a rat, and the latter very few indeed, and none of
any size. Such is also the case in Scotland and Norway. Again, on the
damp west coast of Tasmania, quadrupeds are rare; whilst the dry
eastern half of the island once swarmed with opossums and kangaroos.
A few miles north of Tungu, the sterile and more lofty provinces of
Tibet abound in wild horses, antelopes, hares, foxes, marmots, and
numerous other quadrupeds; although their altitude, climate, and
scanty vegetation are apparently even more unsuited to support such
numbers of animals of so large a size than the karroos of South
Africa, and the steppes of Siberia and Arctic America, which
similarly abound in animal life. The laws which govern the
distribution of large quadrupeds seem to be intimately connected with
those of climate; and we should have regard to these considerations
in our geological speculations, and not draw hasty conclusions from
the absence of the remains of large herbivora in formations
disclosing a redundant vegetation.

Besides the wild sheep found on these mountains, a species of marmot*
[The _Lagopus Tibetanus_ of Hodgson. I procured one that displayed an
extraordinary tenacity of life: part of the skull was shot away, and
the brain protruded; still it showed the utmost terror at my dog.]
("Kardiepieu" of the Tibetans) sometimes migrates in swarms (like the
Lapland "Lemming") from Tibet as far as Tungu. There are few birds
but red-legged crows and common ravens. Most of the insects belonged
to arctic types, and they were numerous in individuals.* [As _Meloe,_
and some flower-feeding lamellicorns. Of butterflies I saw blues
(_Polyommatus_), marbled whites, _Pontia, Colias_ and _Argynnis._
A small _Curculio_ was frequent, and I found _Scolopendra,_ ants and
earthworms, on sunny exposures as high as 15,500 feet.]

Illustration--TIBET MARMOT.

The Choongtam Lama was at a small temple near Tungu during the whole
of my stay, but he would not come to visit me, pretending to be
absorbed in his devotions. Passing one day by the temple, I found him
catechising two young aspirants for holy orders. He is one of the
Dukpa sect, wore his mitre, and was seated cross-legged on the grass
with his scriptures on his knees: he put questions to the boys, when
he who answered best took the other some yards off, put him down on
his hands and knees, threw a cloth over his back, and mounted; then
kicking, spurring, and cuffing his steed, he was galloped back to the
Lama and kicked off; when the catechising recommenced.

I spent a week at Tungu most pleasantly, ascending the neighbouring
mountains, and mixing with the people, whom I found uniformly kind,
frank, and extremely hospitable; sending their children after me to
invite me to stop at their tents, smoke, and drink tea; often
refusing any remuneration, and giving my attendants curds and
yak-flesh. If on foot, I was entreated to take a pony; and when tired
I never scrupled to catch one, twist a yak-hair rope over its jaw as
a bridle, and throwing a goat-hair cloth upon its back (if no saddle
were at hand), ride away whither I would. Next morning a boy would be
sent for the steed, perhaps bringing an invitation to come and take
it again. So I became fond of brick-tea boiled with butter, salt, and
soda, and expert in the Tartar saddle; riding about perched on the
shoulders of a rough pony, with my feet nearly on a level with my
pockets, and my knees almost meeting in front.

On the 28th of July much snow fell on the hills around, as low as
14,000 feet, and half an inch of rain at Tungu;* [An inch and a half
fell at Dorjiling during the same period.] the former soon melted,
and I made an excursion to Chomiomo on the following day, hoping to
reach the lower line of perpetual snow. Ascending the valley of the
Chomiochoo, I struck north up a steep slope, that ended in a spur of
vast tabular masses of quartz and felspar, piled like slabs in a
stone quarry, dipping south-west 5 degrees to 10 degrees, and
striking north-west. These resulted from the decomposition of gneiss,
from which the layers of mica bad been washed away, when the rain and
frost splitting up the fragments, the dislocation is continued to a
great depth into the substance of the rock.

Large silky cushions of a forget-me-not grew amongst the rocks,
spangled with beautiful blue flowers, and looking like turquoises set
in silver: the _Delphininin glaciale_* [This new species has been
described for the "Flora Indica" of Dr. Thomson and myself: it is a
remarkable plant, very closely resembling, and as it were
representing, the _D. Brunonianum_ of the western Himalaya.
The latter plant smells powerfully of musk, but not so disagreeably
as this does.] was also abundant, exhaling a rank smell of musk.
It indicates a very great elevation in Sikkim, and on my ascent far
above it, therefore, I was not surprised to find water boil at 182.6
degrees (air 43 degrees), which gives an altitude of 16,754 feet.

A dense fog, with sleet, shut out all view; and I did not know in
what direction to proceed higher, beyond the top of the sharp, stony
ridge I had attained. Here there was no perpetual snow, which is to
be accounted for by the nature of the surface facilitating its
removal, the edges of the rocks which project through the snow,
becoming heated, and draining off the water as it melts.

During my stay at Tungu, from the 23rd to the 30th of July, no day
passed without much deposition of moisture, but generally in so light
a form that throughout the whole time but one inch was registered in
the rain-gauge; during the same time four inches and a half of rain
fell at Dorjiling, and three inches and a half at Calcutta. The mean
temperature was 50 degrees (max. 65 degrees, min. 40.7 degrees);
extremes, 65/38 degrees. The mean range (23.3 degrees) was thus much
greater than at Dorjiling, where it was only 8.9 degrees.
A thermometer, sunk three feet, varied only a few tenths from 57.6
degrees. By twenty-five comparative observations with Calcutta,
1 degree Fahr. is the equivalent of every 362 feet of ascent; and
twenty comparative observations with Dorjiling give 1 degree for
every 340 feet. The barometer rose and fell at the same hours as at
lower elevations; the tide amounting to 0.060 inch, between 9.50 a.m.
and 4 p.m.

I left Tungu on the 30th of July, and spent that night at Tallum;
where a large party of men had just arrived, with loads of madder,
rice, canes, bamboos, planks, etc., to be conveyed to Tibet on yaks
and ponies.* [About 300 loads of timber, each of six planks, are said
to be taken across the Kongra Lama pass annually; and about 250 of
rice, besides canes, madder, bamboos, cottons, cloths, and
_Symplocos_ leaves for dyeing. This is, no doubt, a considerably
exaggerated statement, and may refer to both the Kongra Lama and
Donkia passes.] On the following day I descended to Lamteng,
gathering a profusion of fine plants by the way.

The flat on which I had encamped at this place in May and June, being
now a marsh, I took up my abode for two days in one of the houses,
and paid the usual penalty of communication with these filthy people;
for which my only effectual remedy was boiling all my garments and
bedding. Yet the house was high, airy, and light; the walls composed
of bamboo, lath, and plaster.

Tropical Cicadas ascend to the pine-woods above Lamteng in this
month, and chirp shrilly in the heat of the day; and glow-worms fly
about at night. The common Bengal and Java toad, _Bufo scabra,_
abounded in the marshes, a remarkable instance of wide geographical
distribution, for a Batrachian which is common at the level of the
sea under the tropics.

On the 3rd of August I descended to Choongtam, which I reached on the
5th. The lakes on the Chateng flat (alt. 8,750 feet) were very full,
and contained many English water-plants;* [_Sparganium ramosum,
Eleocharis palustris, Scirpus triqueter,_ and _Callitriche verna?_
Some very tropical genera ascend thus high; as _Paspalum_ amongst
grasses, and _Scleria,_ a kind of sedge.]  the temperature of the
water was 92 degrees near the edges, where a water-insect
(_Notonecta_) was swimming about.

Below this I passed an extensive stalactitic deposit of lime, and a
second occurred lower down, on the opposite side of the valley. The
apparently total absence of limestone rocks in any part of Sikkim
(for which I made careful search), renders these deposits, which are
far from unfrequent, very curious. Can the limestone, which appears
in Tibet, underlie the gneiss of Sikkim? We cannot venture to assume
that these lime-charged streams, which in Sikkim burst from the steep
flanks of narrow mountain spurs, at elevations between 1000 and 7000
feet, have any very remote or deep origin. If the limestone be not
below the gneiss, it must either occur intercalated with it, or be
the remains of a formation now all but denuded in Sikkim.

Terrific landslips had taken place along the valley, carrying down
acres of rock, soil, and pine-forests, into the stream. I saw one
from Kampo Samdong, on the opposite flank of the valley, which swept
over 100 yards in breadth of forest. I looked in vain for any signs
of scratching or scoring, at all comparable to that produced by
glacial action. The bridge at the Tuktoong, mentioned at chapter xix,
being carried away, we had to ascend for 1000 feet (to a place where
the river could be crossed) by a very precipitous path, and descend
on the opposite side. In many places we had great difficulty in
proceeding, the track being obliterated by the rains, torrents, and
landslips. Along the flats, now covered with a dense rank vegetation,
we waded ankle, and often knee, deep in mud, swarming with leeches;
and instead of descending into the valley of the now too swollen
Lachen, we made long detours, rounding spurs by canes and bamboos
suspended from trees.

At Choongtam the rice-fields were flooded: and the whole flat was a
marsh, covered with tropical grasses and weeds, and alive with
insects, while the shrill cries of cicadas, frogs and birds, filled
the air. Sand-flies, mosquitos, cockroaches, and enormous
cockchafers,* [_Eucerris Griffithii,_ a magnificent species.
Three very splendid insects of the outer ranges of Sikkim never
occurred in the interior: these are a gigantic Curculio (_Calandra_)
a wood-borer; a species of Goliath-beetle, _Cheirotonus Macleaii,_
and a smaller species of the same rare family, _Trigonophorus
nepalensis_; of these the former is very scarce, the latter extremely
abundant, flying about at evenings; both are flower-feeders, eating
honey and pollen. In the summer of 1848, the months at Dorjiling were
well marked by the swarms of peculiar insects that appeared in
inconceivable numbers; thus, April was marked by a great black
_Passalus,_ a beetle one-and-a-half inch long, that flies in the face
and entangles itself in the hair; May, by stag-beetles and
longicorns; June, by _Coccinella_ (lady-birds), white moths, and
flying-bugs; July, by a _Dryptis?_ a long-necked carabideous insect;
August, by myriads of earwigs, cockroaches, Goliath-beetles, and
cicadas; September, by spiders.] _Mantis,_ great locusts,
grasshoppers, flying-bugs, crickets, ants, spiders, caterpillars, and
leeches, were but a few of the pests that swarmed in my tent and made
free with my bed. Great lazy butterflies floated through the air;
_Thecla_ and _Hesperides_ skipped about, and the great _Nymphalidae_
darted around like swallows. The venomous black cobra was common, and
we left the path with great caution, as it is a lazy reptile, and
lies basking in the sun; many beautiful and harmless green snakes,
four feet long, glided amongst the bushes. My dogs caught a "Rageu,"*
["Ragoah," according to Hodgson: but it is not the _Procapra
picticaudata_ of Tibet.] a very remarkable animal, half goat and half
deer; the flesh was good and tender, dark-coloured, and lean.

I remained here till the 15th of August,* [Though 5 degrees further
north, and 5,268 feet above the level of Calcutta, the mean
temperature at Choongtam this month was only 12. degrees cooler than
at Calcutta; forty observations giving 1 degree Fahr. as equal to 690
feet of elevation; whereas in May the mean of twenty-seven
observations gave 1 degree Fahr. as equal to 260 feet, the mean
difference of temperature being then 25 degrees. The mean maximum of
the day was 80 degrees, and was attained at 11 a.m., after which
clouds formed, and the thermometer fell to 66 degrees at sunset, and
56 degrees at night. In my blanket tent the heat rose to upwards of
100 degrees in calm weather. The afternoons were generally squally
and rainy.] arranging my Lachen valley collections previous to
starting for the Lachoong, whence I hoped to reach Tibet again by a
different route, crossing the Donkia pass, and thence exploring the
sources of the Teesta at the Cholamoo lakes.

Whilst here I ascertained the velocity of the currents of the Lachen
and Lachoong rivers. Both were torrents, than which none could be
more rapid, short of becoming cataracts: the rains were at their
height, and the melting of the snows at its maximum. I first measured
several hundred yards along the banks of each river above the
bridges, repeating this several times, as the rocks and jungle
rendered it very difficult to do it accurately: then, sitting on the
bridge, I timed floating masses of different materials and sizes that
were thrown in at the upper point. I was surprised to find the
velocity of the Lachen only nine miles per hour, for its waters
seemed to shoot past with the speed of an arrow, but the floats
showed the whole stream to be so troubled with local eddies and
backwaters, that it took from forty-three to forty-eight seconds for
each float to pass over 200 yards, as it was perpetually submerged by
under-currents. The breadth of the river averaged sixty-eight feet,
and the discharge was 4,420 cubic feet of water per second.
The temperature was 57 degrees.

At the Lachoong bridge the jungle was still denser, and the banks
quite inaccessible in many places. The mean velocity was eight miles
an hour, the breadth ninety-five feet, the depth about the same as
that of the Lachen, giving a discharge of 5,700 cubic feet of water
per second;* [Hence it appears that the Lachoong, being so much the
more copious stream, should in one sense be regarded as the
continuation of the Teesta, rather than the Lachen, which, however,
has by far the most distant source. Their united streams discharge
upwards of 10,000 cubic feet of water per second in the height of the
rains! which is, however, a mere fraction of the discharge of the
Teesta when that river leaves the Himalaya. The Ganges at Hurdwar
discharges 8000 feet per second during the dry season.] its
temperature was also 57 degrees. These streams retain an
extraordinary velocity, for many miles upwards; the Lachen to its
junction with the Zemu at 9000 feet, and the Zemu itself as far up as
the Thlonok, at 10,000 feet, and the Lachoong to the village of that
name, at 8000 feet: their united streams appear equally rapid till
they become the Teesta at Singtam.* [The slope of the bed of the
Lachen from below the confluence of the Zemu to the village of
Singtam is 174 feet per mile, or 1 foot in 30; that of the Lachoong
from the village of that name to Singtam is considerably less.]

On the 15th of August, having received supplies from Dorjiling, I
started up the north bank of the Lachoong, following the Singtam
Soubah, who accompanied me officially, and with a very bad grace;
poor fellow, he expected me to have returned with him to Singtam, and
thence gone back to Dorjiling, and many a sore struggle we had on
this point. At Choongtam he had been laid up with ulcerated legs from
the bites of leeches and sand-flies, which required my treatment.

The path was narrow, and ran through a jungle of mixed tropical and
temperate plants,* [As _Paris, Dipsacus, Circaea, Thalictrum,
Saxifraga ciliaris, Spiranthes, Malva, Hypoxis, Anthericum,
Passiflora, Drosera, Didymocarpus,_ poplar, _Calamagrostis,_ and
_Eupatorium._] many of which are not found at this elevation on the
damp outer ranges of Dorjiling. We crossed to the south bank by a
fine cane-bridge forty yards long, the river being twenty-eight
across and here I have to record the loss of my dog Kinchin; the
companion of all my late journeyings, and to whom I had become really
attached. He had a bad habit, of which I had vainly tried to cure
him, of running for a few yards on the round bamboos by which the
cane-bridges are crossed, and on which it was impossible for a dog to
retain his footing: in this situation he used to get thoroughly
frightened, and lie down on the bamboos with his legs hanging over
the water, and having no hold whatever. I had several times rescued
him from this perilous position, which was always rendered more
imminent from the shaking of the bridge as I approached him. On the
present occasion, I stopped at the foot of some rocks below the
bridge, botanizing, and Kinchin having scrambled up the rocks, ran on
to the bridge. I could not see him, and was not thinking about him,
when suddenly his shrill, short barks of terror rang above the
roaring torrent. I hastened to the bridge, but before I could get to
it, he had lost his footing, and had disappeared. Holding on by the
cane, I strained my eyes till the bridge seemed to be swimming up the
valley, and the swift waters to be standing still, but to no purpose;
he had been carried under at once, and swept away miles below.
For many days I missed him by my side on the mountain, and by my feet
in camp. He had become a very handsome dog, with glossy black hair,
pendent triangular ears, short muzzle, high forehead, jet-black eyes,
straight limbs, arched neck, and a most glorious tail curling over
his back.* [The woodcut at vol. i. chapter ix, gives the character of
the Tibet mastiff, to which breed his father belonged; but it is not
a portrait of himself, having been sketched from a dog of the pure
breed, in the Zoological Society's Gardens, by C. Jenyns, Esq.]

A very bad road led to the village of Keadom, situated on a flat
terrace several hundred feet above the river, and 6,609 feet above
the sea, where I spent the night. Here are cultivated plantains and
maize, although the elevation is equal to parts of Dorjiling, where
these plants do not ripen.

The river above Keadom is again crossed, by a plank bridge, at a
place where the contracted streams flow between banks forty feet
high, composed of obscurely stratified gravel, sand, and water-worn
boulders. Above this the path ascends lofty flat-topped spurs, which
overhang the river, and command some of the most beautiful scenery in
Sikkim. The south-east slopes are clothed with _Abies Brunoniana_ at
8000 feet elevation, and cleft by a deep ravine, from which projects
what appears to be an old moraine, fully 1500 or perhaps 2000 feet
high. Extensive landslips on its steep flank expose (through the
telescope) a mass of gravel and angular blocks, while streams cut
deep channels in it.

This valley is far more open and grassy than that of the Lachen, and
the vegetation also differs much.* [_Umbelliferae_ and _Compositae_
abound, and were then flowering; and an orchis (_Satyrium
Nepalense_), scented like our English _Gymnadenia,_ covered the
ground in some places, with tall green _Habenariae_ and a yellow
_Spathoglottis,_ a genus with pseudo-bulbs. Of shrubs, _Xanthoxylon,
Rhus, Prinsepia, Cotoneaster, Pyrus,_ poplar and oak, formed thickets
along the path; while there were as many as eight and nine kinds of
balsams, some eight feet high.] In the afternoon we reached Lachoong,
which is by far the most picturesque village in the temperate region
of Sikkim. Grassy flats of different levels, sprinkled with brushwood
and scattered clumps of pine and maple, occupy the valley; whose west
flanks rise in steep, rocky, and scantily wooded grassy slopes. About
five miles to the north the valley forks; two conspicuous domes of
snow rising from the intermediate mountains. The eastern valley leads
to lofty snowed regions, and is said to be impracticable; the
Lachoong flows down the western, which appeared rugged, and covered
with pine woods. On the east, Tunkra mountain* [This mountain is seen
from Dorjiling; its elevation is about 18,700 feet.] rises in a
superb unbroken sweep of dark pine-wood and cliffs, surmounted by
black rocks and white fingering peaks of snow. South of this, the
valley of the Tunkrachoo opens, backed by sharp snowed pinnacles,
which form the continuation of the Chola range; over which a pass
leads to the Phari district of Tibet, which intervenes between Sikkim
and Bhotan. Southwards the view is bounded by snowy mountains, and
the valley seems blocked up by the remarkable moraine-like spur which
I passed above Keadom.


Stupendous moraines rise 1500 feet above the Lachoong in several
concentric series, curving downwards and outwards, so as to form a
bell-shaped mouth to the valley of the Tunkrachoo. Those on the upper
flank are much the largest; and the loftiest of them terminates in a
conical hill crowned with Boodhist flags, and its steep sides cut
into horizontal roads or terraces, one of which is so broad and flat
as to suggest the idea of its having been cleared by art.


On the south side of the Tunkrachoo river the moraines are also more
or less terraced, as is the, floor of the Lachoong valley, and its
east slopes, 1000 feet up.* [I have since been greatly struck with
the similarity between the features of this valley, and those of
Chamouni (though the latter is on a smaller scale) above the Lavanchi
moraine. The spectator standing in the expanded part below the
village of Argentiere, and looking upwards, sees the valley closed
above by the ancient moraine of the Argentiere glacier, and below by
that of Lavanchi; and an all sides the slopes are cut into terraces,
strewed with boulders. I found traces of stratified pebbles and sand
on the north flank of the Lavanchi moraine however, which I failed to
discover in those of Lachoong. The average slope of these pine-clad
Sikkim valleys much approximates to that of Chamouni, and never
approaches the precipitous character of the Bernese Alps' valleys,
Kandersteg, Lauterbrunnen, and Grindelwald.]

The river is fourteen yards broad, and neither deep nor rapid: the
village is on the east bank, and is large for Sikkim; it contains
fully 100 good wooden houses, raised on posts, and clustered together
without order. It was muddy and intolerably filthy, and intersected
by some small streams, whose beds formed the roads, and, at the same
time, the common sewers of the natives. There is some wretched
cultivation in fields,* [Full of such English weeds as shepherd's
purse, nettles, _Solanum nigrum,_ and dock; besides many Himalayan
ones, as balsams, thistles, a beautiful geranium, mallow, _Haloragis_
and Cucurbitaceous plants.] of wheat, barley, peas, radishes, and
turnips. Rice was once cultivated at this elevation (8000 feet), but
the crop was uncertain; some very tropical grasses grow wild here, as
_Eragrostis_ and _Panicum._ In gardens the hollyhock is seen: it is
said to be introduced through Tibet from China; also _Pinus excelsa_
from Bhotan, peaches, walnuts, and weeping willows. A tall poplar was
pointed out to me as a great wonder; it had two species of _Pyrus_
growing on its boughs, evidently from seed; one was a mountain ash,
the other like _Pyrus Aria._

Soon after camping, the Lachoong Phipun, a very tall, intelligent,
and agreeable looking man, waited on me with the usual presents, and
a request that I would visit his sick father. His house was lofty and
airy: in the inner room the sick man was stretched on a board,
covered with a blanket, and dying of pressure on the brain; he was
surrounded by a deputation of Lamas from Teshoo Loombo, sent for in
this emergency. The principal one was a fat fellow, who sat
cross-legged before a block-printed Tibetan book, plates of raw meat,
rice, and other offerings, and the bells, dorje, etc. of his
profession. Others sat around, reading or chanting services, and
filling the room with incense. At one end of the apartment was a good
library in a beautifully carved book-case.



Leave Lachoong for Tunkra pass -- Moraines and their vegetation --
Pines of great dimensions -- Wild currants -- Glaciers -- Summit of
pass -- Elevation -- Views -- Plants -- Winds -- Choombi district --
Lacheepia rock -- Extreme cold -- Kinchinjunga -- Himalayan grouse --
Meteorological observations -- Return to Lachoong -- Oaks -- Ascent
to Yeumtong -- Flats and debacles -- Buried pine-trunks -- Perpetual
snow -- Hot springs -- Behaviour of Singtam Soubah -- Leave for Momay
Samdong -- Upper limit of trees -- Distribution of plants -- Glacial
terraces, etc. -- Forked Donkia -- Moutonneed rocks -- Ascent to
Donkia pass -- Vegetation -- Scenery -- Lakes -- Tibet -- Bhomtso --
Arun river -- Kiang-lah mountains -- Yaru-Tsampu river -- Appearance
of Tibet -- Kambajong -- Jigatzi -- Kinchinjhow, and Kinchinjunga --
Chola range -- Deceptive appearance of distant landscape -- Perpetual
snow -- Granite -- Temperatures -- Pulses -- Plants -- Tripe de roche
-- Return to Momay -- Dogs and yaks -- Birds -- Insects -- Quadrupeds
-- Hot springs -- Marmots -- Kinchinjhow glacier.

The Singtam Soubah being again laid up here from the consequences of
leech-bites, I took the opportunity of visiting the Tunkra-lah pass,
represented as the most snowy in Sikkim; which I found to be the
case. The route lay over the moraines on the north flank of the
Tunkrachoo, which are divided by narrow dry gullies,* [These ridges
of the moraine, separated by gullies, indicate the progressive
retirement of the ancient glacier, after periods of rest. The same
phenomena may be seen, on a diminutive scale, in the Swiss Alps, by
any one who carefully examines the lateral and often the terminal
moraines of any retiring or diminishing glacier, at whose base or
flanks are concentric ridges, which are successive deposits.] and
composed of enormous blocks disintegrating into a deep layer of clay.
All are clothed with luxuriant herbage and flowering shrubs,*
[_Ranunculus, Clematis, Thalictrum, Anemone, Aconitum variegatum_ of
Europe, a scandent species, Berberry, _Deutzia, Philadelphus,_ Rose,
Honeysuckle, Thistles, Orchis, _Habenaria, Fritillaria, Aster,
Calimeris, Verbascum thapsus, Pedicularis, Euphrasia, Senecio,
Eupatorium, Dipsacus, Euphorbia,_ Balsam, _Hypericum, Gentiana,
Halenia, Codonopsis, Polygonum._] besides small larches and pines,
rhododendrons and maples; with _Enkianthus, Pyrus,_ cherry, _Pieris,_
laurel, and _Goughia._ The musk-deer inhabits these woods, and at
this season I have never seen it higher. Large monkeys are also found
on the skirts of the pine-forests, and the _Ailurus ochraceus_
(Hodgs.), a curious long-tailed animal peculiar to the Himalaya,
something between a diminutive bear and a squirrel. In the dense and
gigantic forest of _Abies Brunoniana_ and silver fir, I measured one
of the former trees, and found it twenty-eight feet in girth, and
above 120 feet in height. The _Abies Webbiana_ attains thirty-five
feet in girth, with a trunk unbranched for forty feet.

The path was narrow and difficult in the wood, and especially along
the bed of the stream, where grew ugly trees of larch, eighty feet
high, and abundance of a new species of alpine strawberry with oblong
fruit. At 11,560 feet elevation, I arrived at an immense rock of
gneiss, buried in the forest. Here currant-bushes were plentiful,
generally growing on the pine-trunks, in strange association with a
small species of _Begonia,_ a hothouse tribe of plants in England.
Emerging from the forest, vast old moraines are crossed, in a shallow
mountain valley, several miles long and broad, 12,000 feet above the
sea, choked with rhododendron shrubs, and nearly encircled by snowy
mountains. Magnificent gentians grew here, also _Senecio, Corydalis,_
and the _Aconitum luridum_ (n. sp.), whose root is said to be as
virulent as _A. ferox_ and _A. Napellus._* [The result of Dr.
Thomson's and my examination of the Himplayan aconites (of which
there are seven species) is that the one generally known as
_A. ferox,_ and which supplies a great deal of the celebrated poison,
is the common _A. Napellus_ of Europe.] The plants were all fully a
month behind those of the Lachen valley at the same elevation.
Heavy rain fell in the afternoon, and we halted under some rocks: as
I had brought no tent, my bed was placed beneath the shelter of one,
near which the rest of the party burrowed. I supped off half a yak's
kidney, an enormous organ in this animal.

On the following morning we proceeded up the valley, towards a very
steep rocky barrier, through which the river cut a narrow gorge, and
beyond which rose lofty snowy mountains: the peak of Tunkra being to
our left hand (north). Saxifrages grew here in profuse tufts of
golden blossoms, and _Chrysosplenium,_ rushes, mountain-sorrel
(_Oxyria_), and the bladder-headed _Saussurea,_ whose flowers are
enclosed in inflated membranous bracts, and smell like putrid meat:
there were also splendid primroses, the spikenard valerian, and
golden Potentillas.

The ascent was steep and difficult, up a stony valley bounded by
precipices; in this the river flowed in a north-west direction, and
we were obliged to wade along it, though its waters were bitterly
cold, the temperature being 39 degrees. At 15,000 feet we passed from
great snowbeds to the surface of a glacier, partly an accumulation of
snow, increased by lateral glaciers: its slope was very gentle for
several miles; the surface was eroded by rain, and very rough, whilst
those of the lateral glaciers were ribboned, crevassed, and often
conspicuously marked with dirt-bands.

A gently sloping saddle, bare of snow, which succeeds the glacier,
forms the top of the Tunkra pass; it unites two snowy mountains, and
opens on the great valley of the Machoo, which flows in a part of
Tibet between Sikkim and Bhotan; its height is 16,083 feet above the
sea by barometer, and 16,137 feet by boiling-point. Nothing can
be more different than the two slopes of this pass; that by which I
had come presented a gentle snowy acclivity, bounded by precipitous
mountains; while that which opened before me was a steep, rocky,
broad, grassy valley, where not a particle of snow was to be seen,
and yaks were feeding near a small lake not 1000 feet down. Nor were
snowy mountains visible anywhere in this direction, except far to the
south-east, in Bhotan. This remarkable difference of climate is due
to the southerly wind which ascends the Tibetan or Machoo valley
being drained by intervening mountains before reaching this pass,
whilst the Sikkim current brings abundant vapours up the Teesta and
Lachoong valleys.

Chumulari lies to the E.N.E. of the Tunkra pass, and is only
twenty-six miles distant, but not seen; Phari is two marches off, in
an easterly direction, and Choombi one to the south-east. Choombi is
the general name given to a large Tibetan province that embraces the
head of the Machoo river, and includes Phari, Eusa, Choombi, and
about thirteen other villages, corresponding to as many districts,
that contain from under a dozen to 300 houses each, varying with the
season and state of trade. The latter is considerable, Phari being,
next to Dorjiling, the greatest Tibetan, Bhotan, Sikkim, and Indian
entrepot along the whole Himalaya east of Nepal. The general form of
Choombi valley is triangular, the broader end northwards: it is
bounded by the Chola range on the west from Donkia to Gipmoochi, and
by the Kamphee or Chakoong range to the east; which is, I believe,
continuous with Chumulari. These meridional ranges approximate to the
southward, so as to form a natural boundary to Choombi. The Machoo
river, rising from Chumulari, flows through the Choombi district, and
enters Bhotan at a large mart called Rinchingoong, whence it flows to
the plains of India, where it is called at Couch-Behar, the Torsha,
or, as some say, the Godadda, and falls into the Burrampooter.

The Choombi district is elevated, for the only cultivation is a
summer or alpine one, neither rice, maize, nor millet being grown
there: it is also dry, for the great height of the Bhotan mountains
and the form of the Machou valley cut off the rains, and there is no
dense forest. It is very mountainous, all carriage being on men's and
yaks' backs, and is populous for this part of the country, the
inhabitants being estimated at 3000, in the trading season, when many
families from Tibet and Bhotan erect booths at Phari.

A civil officer at Phari collects the revenue under the Lhassan
authorities, and there is also a Tibetan fort, an officer, and guard.
The inhabitants of this district more resemble the Bhotanese than
Tibetans, and are a thievish set, finding a refuge under the
Paro-Pilo of Bhotan,* [There was once a large monastery, called
Kazioo Goompa, at Choombi, with upwards of one hundred Lamas.
During a struggle between the Sikkim and Bhotan monks for superiority
in it, the abbot died. His avatar reappeared in two places at once!
in Bhotan as a relative of the Paro-Pilo himself, and in Sikkim as a
brother of the powerful Gangtok Kajee. Their disputes were referred
to the Dalai Lama, who pronounced for Sikkim. This was not to be
disputed by the Pilo, who, however, plundered the Goompa of its
silver, gold, and books, leaving nothing but the bare walls for the
successful Lama! The Lhassan authorities made no attempt to obtain
restitution, and the monastery has been consequently neglected.] who
taxes the refugees according to the estimate he forms of their
plunder. The Tibetans seldom pursue the culprits, as the Lhassan
government avoids all interference south of their own frontier.

From Choombi to Lhassa is fifteen days' long journeys for a man
mounted on a stout mule; all the rice passing through Phari is
monopolised there for the Chinese troops at Lhassa. The grazing for
yaks and small cattle is excellent in Choombi, and the _Pinus
excelsa_ is said to grow abundantly there, though unknown in Sikkim,
but I have not heard of any other peculiarity in its productions.

Very few plants grew amongst the stones at the top of the Tunkra
pass, and those few were mostly quite different from those of Palung
and Kongra Lama. A pink-floweerd _Arenaria,_ two kinds of
_Corydalis,_ the cottony _Saussurea,_ and diminutive primroses, were
the most conspicuous.* [The only others were _Leontopodium, Sedum,_
Saxifrage, _Ramunculus hyperboreus, Ligularia,_ two species of
_Polygonum,_ a _Trichostomum, Stereocaulon,_ and _Lecidea
geographica,_ not one grass or sedge.] The wind was variable, blowing
alternately up both valleys, bringing much snow when it blew from the
Teesta, though deflected to a north-west breeze; when, on the
contrary, it blew from Tibet, it was, though southerly, dry.
Clouds obscured all distant view. The temperature varied between noon
and 1.30 p.m. from 39 degrees to 40.5 degrees, the air being
extremely damp.

Returning to the foot of the glacier, I took up my quarters for two
days under an enormous rock overlooking the broad flat valley in
which I had spent the previous night, and directly fronting Tunkra
mountain, which bore north about five miles distant. This rock was
sixty to eighty feet high, and 15,250 feet above the sea; it was of
gneiss, and was placed on the top of a bleak ridge, facing the north;
no shrub or bush being near it. The gentle slope outwards of the rock
afforded the only shelter, and a more utterly desolate place than
Lacheepia, as it is called, I never laid my unhoused head in.
It commanded an incomparable view due west across the Lachoong
and Lachen valleys, of the whole group of Kinchinjunga snows, from
Tibet southwards, and as such was a most valuable position for
geographical purposes.

The night was misty, and though the temperature was 35 degrees, I was
miserably cold; for my blankets being laid on the bare ground, the
chill seemed to strike from the rock to the very marrow of my bones.
In the morning the fog hung till sunrise, when it rose majestically
from all the mountain-tops; but the view obtained was transient, for
in less than an hour the dense woolly banks of fog which choked the
valleys ascended like a curtain to the warmed atmosphere above, and
slowly threw a veil over the landscape. I waited till the last streak
of snow was shut out from my view, when I descended, to breakfast on
Himalayan grouse (_Tetrao-perdix nivicola_), a small gregarious bird
which inhabits the loftiest stony mountains, and utters a short cry
of "Quiok, quiok;" in character and appearance it is intermediate
between grouse and partridge, and is good eating, though tough.

Hoping to obtain another view, which might enable me to correct the
bearings taken that morning, I was tempted to spend a second night in
the open air at Lacheepia, passing the day botanizing* [Scarcely a
grass, and no _Astragali,_ grow on these stony and snowy slopes: and
the smallest heath-like _Andromeda,_ a still smaller _Menziesia_ (an
erotic genus, previously unknown in the Himalaya) and a prostrate
willow, are the only woody-stemmed plants above 15,000 feet.] in the
vicinity, and taking observations of the barometer and wet-bulb:
I also boiled three thermometers by turns, noting the grave errors
likely to attend observations of this instrument for elevation.*
[These will be more particularly alluded to in the Appendix, where
will be found a comparison of elevations, deduced from boiling point
and from barometric observations. The height of Lacheepia is 14,912
feet by boiling-point, and 15,262 feet by barometer.] Little rain
fell during the day, but it was heavy at night, though there was
fortunately no wind; and I made a more comfortable bed with tufts of
juniper brought up from below. Our fire was principally of wet
rhododendron wood, with masses of the aromatic dwarf species, which,
being full of resinous glands, blazed with fury. Next day, after a
very transient glimpse of the Kinchinjunga snows, I descended to
Lachoong, where I remained for some days botanizing. During my stay I
was several times awakened by all the noises and accompaniments of a
night-attack or alarm; screaming voices, groans, shouts, and
ejaculations, the beating of drums and firing of guns, and flambeaux
of pine-wood gleaming amongst the trees, and flitting from house to
house. The cause, I was informed, was the, presence of a demon, who
required exorcisement, and who generally managed to make the
villagers remember his visit, by their missing various articles after
the turmoil made to drive him away. The custom of driving out demons
in the above manner is constantly practised by the Lamas in Tibet:
MM. Huc and Gabet give a graphic account of such an operation during
their stay at Kounboum.

On the 29th of August I left Lachoong and proceeded up the valley.
The road ran along a terrace, covered with long grass, and bounded by
lofty banks of unstratified gravel and sand, and passed through
beautiful groves of green pines, rich in plants. No oak nor chesnut
ascends above 9000 feet here or elsewhere in the interior of Sikkim,
where they are replaced by a species of hazel (_Corylus_); in the
North Himalaya, on the other hand, an oak (_Quercus semecarpifolia,_
see vol. i., chapter viii) is amongst the most alpine trees, and the
nut is a different species, more resembling the European. On the
outer Sikkim ranges oaks (_Q. annulata?_) ascend to 10,000 feet, and
there is no hazel. Above the fork, the valley contracts extremely,
and its bed is covered with moraines and landslips, which often bury
the larches and pines. Marshes occur here and there, full of the
sweet-scented Hierochloe grass, the Scotch _Thalictrum alpinum,_ and
an _Eriocaulon,_ which ascends to 10,000 feet. The old moraines were
very difficult to cross, and on one I found a barricade, which had
been erected to deceive me regarding the frontier, had I chosen this
route instead of the Lachen one, in May.

Broad flats clothed with rhododendron, alternate with others covered
with mud, boulders, and gravel, which had flowed down from the gorges
on the west, and which still contained trees, inclined in all
directions, and buried up to their branches; some of these debacles
were 400 yards across, and sloped at an angle of 2 degrees to 3
degrees, bearing on their surfaces blocks fifteen yards in diameter.*
[None were to be compared in size and extent with that at Bex, at the
mouth of the Rhone valley.] They seem to subside materially, as I
perceived they had left marks many feet higher on the tree-trunks.
Such debacles must often bury standing forests in a very favourable
material, climate, and position for becoming fossilized.

On the 30th of August I arrived at Yeumtong, a small summer
cattle-station, on a flat by the Lachoong, 11,920 feet above the sea;
the general features of which closely resemble those of the narrow
Swiss valleys. The west flank is lofty and precipitous, with narrow
gullies still retaining the winter's snow, at 12,500 feet; the east
gradually slopes up to the two snowy domes seen from Lachoong; the
bed of the valley is alternately a flat lake-bed, in which the river
meanders at the rate of three and a half miles an hour, and sudden
descents, cumbered with old moraines, over which it rushes in sheets
of Loam. Silver-firs ascend nearly to 13,000 feet, where they are
replaced by large junipers, sixty feet high: up the valley Chango
Khang is seen, with a superb glacier descending to about 14,000 feet
on its south
flank. Enormous masses of rock were continually precipitated from the
west side, close to the shed in which I had taken up my quarters,
keeping my people in constant alarm, and causing a great commotion
among the yaks, dogs, and ponies. On the opposite side of the river
is a deep gorge; in which an immense glacier descends lower than any
I have seen in Sikkim. I made several attempts to reach it by the
gully of its discharging stream, but was always foiled by the rocks
and dense jungle of pines, rhododendron, and dwarf holly.

The snow-banks on the face of the dome-shaped mountain appearing
favourable for ascertaining the position of the level of perpetual
snow, I ascended to them on the 6th of September, and found the mean
elevation along an even, continuous, and gradual slope, with a full
south-west exposure, to be 15,985 feet by barometer, and 15,816 feet
by boiling-point. These beds of snow, however broad and convex,
cannot nevertheless be distinguished from glaciers: they occupy, it
is true, mountain slopes, and do not fill hollows (like glaciers
commonly so called), but they display the ribboned structure of ice,
and being viscous fluids, descend at a rate and to a distance
depending on the slope, and on the amount of annual accumulation
behind. Their termination must therefore be far below that point at
which all the snow that falls melts, which is the theoretical line of
perpetual snow. Before returning I attempted to proceed northwards to
the great glacier, hoping to descend by its lateral moraine, but a
heavy snow-storm drove me down to Yeumtong.

Some hot-springs burst from the bank of the Lachen a mile or so below
the village: they are used as baths, the patient remaining three days
at a time in them, only retiring to eat in a little shed close by.
The discharge amounts to a few gallons per minute; the temperature at
the source is 112.6 degrees, and 106 degrees in the bath.* [This
water boiled at 191.6 degrees, the same at which snow-water and that
of the river did; giving an elevation of 11,730 feet. Observations on
the mineral constituents of the water will be found in the Appendix.]
The water has a slightly saline taste; it is colourless, but emits
bubbles of sulphuretted hydrogen gas, blackening silver. A cold
spring (temperature 42 degrees) emerged close by, and the Lachoong
not ten yards off, was 47 degrees to 50 degrees. A conferva grows in
the hot water, and the garnets are worn out of the gneiss rock
exposed to its action.

The Singtam Soubah had been very sulky since leaving Choongtam, and I
could scarcely get a drop of milk or a slice of curd here. I had to
take him to task severely for sanctioning the flogging of one of my
men; a huntsman, who had offered me his services at Choongtam, and
who was a civil, industrious fellow, though he had procured me little
besides a huge monkey, which had nearly bitten off the head of his
best dog. I had made a point of consulting the Soubah before hiring
him, for fear of accidents; but this did not screen him from the
jealousy of the Choongtam Lama, who twice flogged him in the Goompa
with rattans (with the Soubah's consent), alleging that he had
quitted his service for mine. My people knew of this, but were afraid
to tell me, which the poor fellow did himself.

The Lachoong Phipun visited me on the 7tb of September: he had
officiously been in Tibet to hear what the Tibetan people would say
to my going to Donkia, and finding them supremely indifferent,
returned to be my guide. A month's provision for ten men having
arrived from Dorjiling, I left Yeumtong the following day for Momay
Samdong, the loftiest yak grazing station in Sikkim (Palung being too
cold for yaks), and within a day's journey of the Donkia pass.

The valley remains almost level for several miles, the road
continuing along the east bank of the Lachen. Shoots of stones
descend from the ravines, all of a white fine-grained granite,
stained red with a minute conferva, which has been taken by Himalayan
travellers for red snow;* [Red snow was never found in the Antarctic
regions during Sir James Ross's South Polar voyage; nor do I know any
authentic record of its having been seen in the Himalaya.] a
phenomenon I never saw in Sikkim.

At a fork of the valley several miles above Yeumtong, and below the
great glacier of Chango Khang, the ancient moraines are prodigious,
much exceeding any I have elsewhere seen, both in extent, in the size
of the boulders, and in the height to which the latter are piled on
one another. Many boulders I measured were twenty yards across, and
some even forty; and the chaotic scene they presented baffles all
description: they were scantily clothed with stunted silver firs.

Beyond this, the path crosses the river, and ascends rapidly over a
mile of steeply sloping landslip, composed of angular fragments of
granite, that are constantly falling from above, and are extremely
dangerous. At 14,000 feet, trees and shrubs cease, willow and
honeysuckle being the last; and thence onward the valley is bleak,
open, and stony, with lofty rocky mountains on either side. The south
wind brought a cold drizzling rain, which numbed us, and two of the
lads who had last come up from Dorjiling were seized with a remittent
fever, originally contracted in the hot valleys; luckily we found
some cattle-sheds, in which I left them, with two men to attend
on them.

Momay Samdong is situated in a broad part of the Lachoong valley,
where three streams meet; it is on the west of Chango Khang, and is
six miles south-east of Kinchinjhow, and seven south-west of Donkia:
it is in the same latitude as Palung, but scarcely so lofty. The mean
of fifty-six barometrical observations contemporaneous with Calcutta
makes it 15,362 feet above the sea; nearly the elevation of Lacheepia
(near the Tunkra pass), from which, however, its scenery and
vegetation entirely differ.

I pitched my tent close to a little shed, at the gently sloping base
of a mountain that divided the Lachoong river from a western
tributary. It was a wild and most exposed spot: long stony mountains,
grassy on the base near the river; distant snowy peaks, stupendous
precipices, moraines, glaciers, transported boulders, and rocks
rounded by glacial action, formed the dismal landscape which
everywhere met the view. There was not a bush six inches high, and
the only approach to woody plants were minute creeping willows and
dwarf rhododendrons, with a very few prostrate junipers
and _Ephedra._

The base of the spur was cut into broad flat terraces, composed of
unstratified sand, pebbles, and boulders; the remains, doubtless, of
an enormously thick glacial deposit. The terracing is as difficult to
be accounted for in this valley as in that of Yangma (East Nepal);
both valleys being far too broad, and descending too rapidly to admit
of the hypothesis of their having been blocked up in the lower part,
and the upper filled with large lakes.* [The formation of small
lakes, however, between moraines and the sides of the valleys they
occupy, or between two successively formed moraines (as I have
elsewhere mentioned), will account for very extensive terraced areas
of this kind; and it must be borne in mind that when the Momay valley
was filled with ice, the breadth of its glacier at this point must
have been twelve miles, and it must have extended east and west from
Chango Khang across the main valley, to beyond Donkia. Still the
great moraines are wanting at this particular point, and though
atmospheric action and the rivers have removed perhaps 200 feet of
glacial shingle, they can hardly have destroyed a moraine of rocks,
large enough to block up the valley.] Another tributary falls into
the Lachoong at Momay, which leads eastwards up to an enormous
glacier that descends from Donkia. Snowy mountains rise nearly all
round it: those on its south and east divide Sikkim from the Phari
province in Tibet; those on the north terminate in a forked or cleft
peak, which is a remarkable and conspicuous feature from Momay.
This, which I have called forked Donkia,* [Its elevation by my
observations is about 21,870 feet.] is the termination of a
magnificent amphitheatre of stupendous snow-clad precipices,
continuously upwards of 20,000 feet high, that forms the east flank
of the upper Lachoong. From Donkia top again, the mountains sweep
round to the westward, rising into fingered peaks of extraordinary
magnificence; and thence --still running west--dip to 18,500 feet,
forming the Donkia pass, and rise again as the great mural mass of
Kinchinjhow. This girdle of mountains encloses the head waters of the
Lachoong, which rises in countless streams from its perpetual snows,
glaciers, and small lakes: its north drainage is to the Cholamoo
lakes in Tibet; in which is the source of the Lachen, which flows
round the north base of Kinchinjhow to Kongra Lama.

The bottom of the Lachoong valley at Momay is broad, tolerably level,
grassy, and covered with isolated mounds and ridges that point down
the valley, and are the remains of glacial deposits. It dips suddenly
below this, and some gneiss rocks that rise in its centre are
remarkably _moutonneed_ or rounded, and have boulders perched on
their summits. Though manifestly rounded and grooved by ancient
glaciers, I failed to find scratches on these weather-worn rocks.* [I
have repeatedly, and equally in vain, sought for scratchings on many
of the most conspicuously moutonneed gneiss rocks of Switzerland.
The retention of such markings depends on other circumstances than
the mere hardness of the rock, or amount of aqueous action. What can
be more astonishing than to see these most delicate scratches
retained in all their sharpness on rocks clothed with seaweed and
shells, and exposed at every tide, in the bays of western Scotland!]

The Lachoong is here twelve or fifteen yards wide, and runs over a
pebbly bed, cutting a shallow channel through the deposits, down to
the subjacent rock, which is in some cases scooped out six or eight
feet deep by its waters. I do not doubt that the flatness of the
floor of the Momay valley is caused by the combined action of the
streams that drained the three glaciers which met here; for the
tendency of retiring glaciers is to level the floors of valleys, by
giving an ever-shifting direction to the rivers which drain them, and
which spread detritus in their course. Supposing these glaciers to
have had no terminal moraines, they might still have forced immense
beds of gravel into positions that would dam up lakes between the ice
and the flanks of the valleys, and thus produce much terracing on the
latter.* [We are still very ignorant of many details of ice action,
and especially of the origin of many enormous deposits which are not
true moraines. These, so conspicuous in the lofty Himalayan valleys,
are not less so in those of the Swiss Alps: witness that broad valley
in which Grindelwald village is situated, and which is covered to an
immense depth with angular detritus, moulded into hills and valleys;
also the whole broad open Upper Rhone valley, above the village of
Munster, and below that of Obergestelen. The action of broad glaciers
on gentle slopes is to raise their own beds by the accumulation of
gravel which their lower surface carries and pushes forward. I have
seen small glaciers thus raised 300 feet; leaving little doubt in my
mind that the upper Himalayan valleys were thus choked with deposit
1000 feet thick, of which indeed the proofs remain along the flanks
of the Yangma valley. The denuding and accumulating effects of ice
thus give a contour to mountain valleys, and sculpture their flanks
and floors far more rapidly than sea action, or the elements. After a
very extensive experience of ice in the Antarctic ocean, and in
mountainous countries, I cannot but conclude that very few of our
geologists appreciate the power of ice as a mechanical agent, which
can hardly be over-estimated, whether as glacier, iceberg, or pack
ice, heaping shingle along coasts.We are still very ignorant of many
details of ice action, and especially of the origin of many enormous
deposits which are not true moraines. These, so conspicuous in the
lofty Himalayan valleys, are not less so in those of the Swiss Alps:
witness that broad valley in which Grindelwald village is situated,
and which is covered to an immense depth with angular detritus,
moulded into hills and valleys; also the whole broad open Upper Rhone
valley, above the village of Munster, and below that of Obergestelen.
The action of broad glaciers on gentle slopes is to raise their own
beds by the accumulation of gravel which their lower surface carries
and pushes forward. I have seen small glaciers thus raised 300 feet;
leaving little doubt in my mind that the upper Himalayan valleys were
thus choked with deposit 1000 feet thick, of which indeed the proofs
remain along the flanks of the Yangma valley. The denuding and
accumulating effects of ice thus give a contour to mountain valleys,
and sculpture their flanks and floors far more rapidly than sea
action, or the elements. After a very extensive experience of ice in
the Antarctic ocean, and in mountainous countries, I cannot but
conclude that very few of our geologists appreciate the power of ice
as a mechanical agent, which can hardly be over-estimated, whether as
glacier, iceberg, or pack ice, heaping shingle along coasts.]

On our arrival, we found that a party of buxom, good-natured looking
girls who were tending yaks, were occupying the hut, which, however,
they cheerfully gave up to my people, spreading a black tent close by
for themselves; and next morning they set off with all their effects
packed upon the yaks. The ground was marshy, and covered with
cowslips, _Ranunculus,_ grasses and sedges, _Cyananthus,_ blue
asters, gentians, etc. The spot appearing highly favourable for
observations, I determined to remain here during the equinoctial
month, and put my people on "two-thirds allowance," _i.e.,_ four
pounds of rice daily for three men, allowing them to send down the
valley to cater for what more they could get. The Singtam Soubah was
intensely disgusted with my determination: he accompanied me next day
to the pass, and having exhausted his persuasions, threats, and
warnings about snow, wind, robbers, starvation, and Cheen sepoys,
departed on the 12th for Yeumtong, leaving me truly happy for the
first time since quitting Dorjiling. I had now a prospect of
uninterruptedly following up my pursuits at an elevation little below
that of the summit of Mont Blanc, surrounded by the loftiest
mountains, and perhaps the vastest glaciers on the globe; my
instruments were in perfect order, and I saw around me a curious and
varied flora.

The morning of the 9th of September promised fair, though billowy
clouds were rapidly ascending the valley. To the eastward my
attention was directed to a double rainbow; the upper was an arch of
the usual form, and the lower was the curved illuminated edge of a
bank of cumulus, with the orange hues below. We took the path to the
Donkia pass, fording the river, and ascending in a north-east
direction, along the foot of stony hills that rise at a gradual slope
of 12 degrees to broad unsnowed ridges, 18,000 to 19,000 feet high.
Shallow valleys, glacier-bound at their upper extremities, descend
from the still loftier rearward mountains; and in these occur lakes.
About five miles up, a broad opening on the west leads to Tomo Chamo,
as the eastern summit of Kinchinjhow is called.* [On one occasion I
ascended this valley, which is very broad, flat, and full of lakes at
different elevations; one, at about 17,000 feet elevation is
three-quarters of a mile long, but not deep: no water-plants grew in
it, but there were plenty of others round its margin. I collected, in
the dry bed of a stream near it, a curious white substance like thick
felt, formed of felspathic silt (no doubt the product of glacial
streams) and the siliceous cells of infusoriae. It much resembles the
fossil or meteoric paper of Germany, which is also formed of the
lowest tribes of fresh-water plants, though considered by Ehrenberg
as of animal origin. A vein of granite in the bottom of the valley
had completely altered the character of the gneiss, which contained
veins of jasper and masses of amorphous garnet. Much olivine is found
in the fissures of the gneiss: this feral is very rare in Sikkim, but
I have also seen it in the fissures of the White gneissy granite of
the surrounding heights.] Above this the valley expands very much,
and is stony and desert: stupendous mountains, upwards of 21,000 feet
high, rear themselves on all sides, and the desolation and grandeur
of the scene are unequalled in my experience. The path again crosses
the river (which is split into many channels), and proceeds
northwards, over gravelly terraces and rocks with patches of Scotch
alpine grasses (_Festuca ovina_ and _Poa laxa_), sedges, _Stipa,_
dandelion, _Allardia,_ gentians, _Saussurea,_ and _Astraga1us,_
varied with hard hemispherical mounds of the alsineous plant
mentioned at chapter xxi.

I passed several shallow lakes at 17,500 feet; their banks were green
and marshy, and supported thirty or forty kinds of plants. At the
head of the valley a steep rocky crest, 500 feet high, rises between
two precipitous snowy peaks, and a very fatiguing ascent (at this
elevation) leads to the sharp rocky summit of the Donkia pass, 18,466
feet above the sea by barometer, and 17,866 by boiling-point.
The view on this occasion was obscured by clouds and fogs, except
towards Tibet, in which direction it was magnificent; but as I
afterwards twice ascended this pass, and also crossed it, I shall
here bring together all the particulars I noted.

The Tibetan view, from its novelty, extent, and singularity, demands
the first notice: the Cholamoo lake lay 1500 feet below me, at the
bottom of a rapid and rocky descent; it was a blue sheet of water,
three or four miles from north to south, and one and a half broad,
hemmed in by rounded spurs from Kinchinjhow on one side, and from
Donkia on the other: the Lachen flowed from its northern extremity,
and turning westward, entered a broad barren valley, bounded on the
north by red stony mountains, called Bhomtso, which I saw from Kongra
Lama, and ascended with Dr. Campbell in the October following: though
18,000 to 19,000 feet high, these mountains were wholly unsnowed.
Beyond this range lay the broad valley of the Arun, and in the
extreme north-west distance, to the north of Nepal, were some immense
snowy mountains, reduced to mere specks on the horizon. The valley of
the Arun was bounded on the north by very precipitous black rocky
mountains, sprinkled with snow; beyond these again, from north to
north-west, snow-topped range rose over range in the clear purple
distance. The nearer of these was the Kiang-lah, which forms the axis
or water-shed of this meridian; its south drainage being to the Arun
river, and its north to the Yaru-tsampu: it appeared forty to fifty
miles off, and of great mean elevation (20,000 feet) the vast snowy
mountains that rose beyond it were, I was assured, beyond the Yaru,
in the salt lake country.* [This salt country was described to me as
enormously lofty, perfectly sterile, and fourteen days' march for
loaded men and sheep from Jigatzi: there is no pasture for yaks,
whose feet are cut by the rocks. The salt is dug (so they express it)
from the margin of lakes; as is the carbonate of soda, "Pleu" of the
Tibetans.] A spur from Chomiomo cut off the view to the southward of
north-west, and one from Donkia concealed all to the east of north.


The most remarkable features of this landscape were its enormous
elevation, and its colours and contrast to the black, rugged, and
snowy Himalaya of Sikkim. All the mountains between Donkia pass and
the Arun were comparatively gently sloped, and of a yellow red
colour, rising and falling in long undulations like dunes, 2000 to
3000 feet above the mean level of the Arun valley, and perfectly bare
of perpetual snow or glaciers. Rocks everywhere broke out on their
flanks, and often along their tops, but the general contour of that
immense area was very open and undulating, like the great ranges of
Central Asia, described by MM. Huc and Gabet. Beyond this again, the
mountains were rugged, often rising into peaks which, from the angles
I took here, and subsequently at Bhomtso, cannot be below 24,000
feet, and are probably much higher. The most lofty mountains were on
the range north of Nepal, not less than 120 miles distant, and which,
though heavily snowed, were below the horizon of Donkia pass.

Cholamoo lake lay in a broad, scantily grassed, sandy and stony
valley; snow-beds, rocks, and glaciers dipped abruptly towards its
head, but on its west bank a lofty brick-red spur sloped upwards from
it, conspicuously cut into terraces for several hundred feet above
its waters.

Kambajong, the chief Tibetan village near this, after Phari and
Giantchi, is situated on the Arun (called in Tibet "Chomachoo"), on
the road from Sikkim to Jigatzi* [I have adopted the simplest mode of
spelling this name that I could find, and omitted the zong or jong,
which means fort, and generally terminates it. I think it would not
be difficult to enumerate fully a dozen ways of spelling the word, of
which Shigatzi, Digarchi, and Djigatzi are the most common.
The Tibetans tell me that they cross two passes after leaving Donkia,
or Kongra Lama, en route for Jigatzi, on both of which they suffer
from headaches and difficulty of breathing; one is over the Kambajong
range; the other, much loftier, is over that of Kiang-lah: as they do
not compliin of Bhomtso, which is also crossed, and is 18,500 feet,
the others may be very lofty indeed. The distance from Donkia pass to
Jigatzi is said to be ten days' journey for loaded yaks. Now,
according to Turner's observations (evidently taken with great care)
that capital is in latitude 29 degrees 4 minutes 20 seconds north, or
only seventy miles north of Donkia; and as the yak travels at the
rate of sixteen miles a day, the country must be extraordinarily
rugged, or the valleys tortuous. Turner took eight or nine days on
his journey from Phari to Teshoo Loombo, a distance of only eighty
miles; yet he is quoted as an authority for the fact of Tibet being a
plain! he certainly crossed an undulating country, probably 16,OOO to
17,000 feet high; a continuation eastwards of the Cholamoo features,
and part of the same mountain range that connects Chumulari and
Donkia: he had always lofty mountains in eight, and rugged ones on
either side, after he had entered the Painomchoo valley. It is a
remarkable and significant fact that Turner never appears to have
seen Chumulari after having passed it, nor Donkia, Kinchinjhow, or
Kinchinjunga at any time.] and Teshoo Loombo. I did not see it, but a
long, stony mountain range above the town is very conspicuous, its
sides presenting an interrupted line of cliffs, resembling the
port-holes of a ship: some fresh-fallen snow lay at the base, but
none at the top, which was probably 18,500 feet high. The banks of
the Arun are thence inhabited at intervals all the way to Tingre,
where it enters Nepal.

Donkia rises to the eastward of the pass, but its top is not visible.
I ascended (over loose rocks) to between 19,000 and 20,000 feet, and
reached vast masses of blue ribboned ice, capping the ridges, but
obtained no further prospect. To the west, the beetling east summit
of Kinchinjhow rises at two miles distance, 3000 to 4000 feet above
the pass. A little south of it, and north of Chango Khang, the view
extends through a gap in the Sebolah range, across the valley of the
Lachen, to Kinchinjunga, distant forty-two miles. The monarch of
mountains looked quite small and low from this point, and it was
difficult to believe it was 10,000 feet more lofty than my position.
I repeatedly looked from it to the high Tibetan mountains in the
extreme north-west distance, and was more than ever struck with the
apparently immense distance, and consequent altitude of the latter:
I put, however, no reliance on such estimates.

To the south the eye wandered down the valley of the Lachoong to the
mountains of the Chola range, which appear so lofty from Dorjiling,
but from here are sunk far below the horizon: on comparing these with
the northern landscape, the wonderful difference between their
respective snow-levels, amounting to fully 5000 feet, was very
apparent. South-east the stupendous snowy amphitheatre formed by the
flank of Donkia was a magnificent spectacle.

This wonderful view forcibly impressed me with the fact, that all
eye-estimates in mountainous countries are utterly fallacious, if not
corrected by study and experience. I had been led to believe that
from Donkia pass the whole country of Tibet sloped away in descending
steppes to the Tsampu, and was more or less of a plain; and could I
have trusted my eyes only, I should have confirmed this assertion so
far as the slope was concerned. When, however, the levelled
theodolite was directed to the distance, the reverse was found to be
the case. Unsnowed and apparently low mountains touched the horizon
line of the telescope; which proves that, if only 37 miles off, they
must, from the dip of the horizon, be at least 1000 feet higher than
the observer's position. The same infallible guide cuts off
mountain-tops and deeply snowed ridges, which to the unaided eye
appear far lower than the point from which they are viewed; but
which, from the quantity of snow on them, must be many thousand feet
higher, and, from the angle they subtend in the instrument, must be
at an immense distance. The want of refraction to lift the horizon,
the astonishing precision of the outlines, and the brilliancy of the
images of mountains reduced by distance to mere specks, are all
circumstances tending to depress them to appearance. The absence of
trees, houses, and familiar objects to assist the eye in the
appreciation of distance, throws back the whole landscape; which,
seen through the rarified atmosphere of 18,500 feet, looks as if
diminished by being surveyed through the wrong end of a telescope.

A few rude cairns were erected on the crest of the pass, covered with
wands, red banners, and votive offerings of rags. I found a fine slab
of slate, inscribed with the Tibetan characters, "Om Mani Padmi hom,"
which Meepo allowed me to take away, as the reward of my exertions.
The ridge is wholly formed of angular blocks of white gneissy
granite, split by frost.* [It was not a proper granite, but a highly
metamorphic felspathic gneiss, with very little mica; being, I
suspect, a gneiss which by metamorphic action was almost remolten
into granite: the lamination was obscure, and marked by faint
undulating lines of mica; it cleaves at all angles, but most
generally along fissures with highly polished undulated black
surfaces. The strike of the same rock near at hand was north-west,
and dip north-east, at various angles.] There was no snow on the pass
itself, but deep drifts and glaciers descended in hollows on the
north side, to 17,000 feet. The rounded northern red shoulder of
Kinchinjhow by Cholamoo lake, apparently 19,000 feet high, was quite
bare, and, as I have said, I ascended Donkia to upwards of 19,000
feet before I found the rocks crusted with ice,* [Snow, transformed
into ice throughout its whole mass: in short, glacial ice in all
physical characters.] and the ground wholly frozen. I assume,
therefore, that 19,000 feet at this spot is not below the mean level
at which all the snow melts that falls on a fair exposure to the
south: this probably coincides with a mean temperature of 20 degrees.
Forty miles further north (in Tibet) the same line is probably at
20,000 feet; for there much less snow falls, and much more melts in
proportion.* [Two secondary considerations materially affecting the
melting of snow, and hence exerting a material influence on the
elevation of the snow-line, appear to me never to have been
sufficiently dwelt upon. Both, however, bear directly upon the great
elevation of the snow-line in Tibet. From the imperfect transmission
of the heating rays of the sun through films of water, which transmit
perfectly the luminous rays, it follows that the direct effects of
the rays, in clear sunshine, are very different at equal elevations
of the moist outer and dry inner Himalaya. Secondly, naked rock and
soil absorb much more heat than surfaces covered with vegetation, and
this heat again radiated is infinitely more rapidly absorbed by snow
(or other white surfaces) than the direct heat of the sun's rays is.
Hence, at equal elevations the ground heats sooner, and the snow is
more exposed to the heat thus radiated in arid Tibet, than in the
wooded and grassed mountains of Sikkim.] From the elevation of about
19,300 feet, which I attained on Donkia, I saw a fine illustration of
that atmospheric phenomenon called the "spectre of the Brocken," my
own shadow being projected on a mass of thin mist that rose above the
tremendous precipices over which I hung. My head was surrounded with
a brilliant circular glory or rainbow.* [Probably caused by spiculae
of ice floating in the atmosphere, the lateral surfaces of which
would then have an uniform inclination of 60 degrees: this, according
to the observations of Mariotte, Venturi, and Fraunhoefer being the
angle necessary for the formation of halos.]

The temperature of the Donkia pass is much higher than might be
anticipated from its great elevation, and from the fact of its being
always bitterly cold to the feelings. This is no doubt due to the
warmth of the ascending currents, and to the heat evolved during the
condensation of their vapours. I took the following observations:--

Sept. 9, 1.30-3.30 p.m.: Temp. 41.8 degrees, D.P. 30.3 degrees,
Difference 11.5 degrees, Tension 0.1876, Humidity 0.665.
Sept. 27 1.15-3.15 p.m.: Temp. 49.2 degrees, D.P. 32.6 degrees,
Difference 16.6 degrees, Tension 0.2037, Humidity 0.560.
Oct. 19, 3.00-3.30 p.m.: Temp. 40.1 degrees, D.P. 25.0 degrees,
Difference 15.1 degrees, Tension 0.1551, Humidity 0.585.

The first and last of these temperatures were respectively 42.3
degrees and 46.4 degrees lower than Calcutta, which, with the proper
deduction for latitude, allows 508 and 460 feet as equivalent to 1
degree Fahr. I left a minimum thermometer on the summit on the 9th of
September, and removed it on the 27th, but it had been lifted and
turned over by the action of the frost and snow on the loose rocks
amongst which I had placed it; the latter appearing to have been
completely shifted. Fortunately, the instrument escaped unhurt, with
the index at 28 degrees.

A violent southerly wind, with a scud of mist, and sometimes snow,
always blew over the pass: but we found shelter on the north face,
where I twice kindled a fire, and boiled my thermometers.* [On the
9th of September the boiling-point was 181.3 degrees, and on the
27th, 181.2 degrees. In both observations, I believe the kettle
communicated a higher temperature to the thermometer than that of the
water, for the elevations deduced are far too low.] On one occasion I
felt the pulses of my party several times during two hours' repose
(without eating); the mean of eight persons was 105 degrees, the
extremes being 92 degrees and 120 degrees, and my own 108 degrees.

One flowering plant ascends to the summit; the alsinaceous one
mentioned at chapter xxi. The Fescue grass, a little fern
(_Woodsia_), and a _Saussurea_* [A pink-flowered woolly _Saussurea,_
and _Delphinium qlaciale,_ are two of the most lofty plants; both
being commonly found from 17,500 to 18,000 feet.] ascend very near
the summit, and several lichens grow on the top, as _Cladonia
vermicularis,_ the yellow _Lecidea geographica,_ and the orange
_L. miniata_;* [This is one of the most Arctic, Antarctic, and
universally diffused plants. The other lichens were _Lecidea
atro-alba, oreina, elegans,_ and _chlorophana,_ all alpine European
and Arctic species. At 17,000 feet occur _Lecanora ventosa, physodes,
candelaria, sordida, atra,_ and the beautiful Swiss _L. chrysoleuca,_
also European species.] also some barren mosses. At 18,300 feet, I
found on one stone only a fine Scotch lichen, a species of
_Gyrophora,_ the _"tripe de roche"_ of Arctic voyagers, and the food
of the Canadian hunters; it is also abundant on the Scotch alps.

Before leaving, I took one more long look at the boundless prospect;
and, now that its important details were secured, I had leisure to
reflect on the impression it produced. There is no loftier country on
the globe than that embraced by this view, and no more howling
wilderness; well might the Singtam Soubah and every Tibetan describe
it as the loftiest, coldest, windiest, and most barren country in the
world. Were it buried in everlasting snows, or burnt by a tropical
sun, it might still be as utterly sterile; but with such sterility I
had long been familiar. Here the colourings are those of the fiery
desert or volcanic island, while the climate is that of the poles.
Never, in the course of all my wanderings, had my eye rested on a
scene so dreary and inhospitable. The "cities of the plain" lie sunk
in no more death-like sea than Cholamoo lake, nor are the tombs of
Petra hewn in more desolate cliffs than those which flank the valley
of the Tibetan Arun.

On our return my pony strained his shoulder amongst the rocks; as a
remedy, the Lachoong Phipun plunged a lancet into the muscle, and
giving me his own animal, rode mine down.* [These animals, called
Tanghan, are wonderfully strong and enduring; they are never shod,
and the hoof often cracks, and they become pigeon-toed: they are
frequently blind of one eye, when they are called "zemik" (blind
ones), but this is thought no great defect. They average 5 pounds to
10 pounds for a good animal in Tibet; and the best fetch 40 pounds to
50 pounds in the plains of India, where they become acclimated and
thrive well. Giantchi (Jhansi-jeung of Turner) is the best mart for
them in this part of Tibet, where some breeds fetch very high prices.
The Tibetans give the foals of value messes of pig's blood and raw
liver, which they devour greedily, and it is said to strengthen them
wonderfully; the custom is, I believe, general in central Asia.
Humboldt (Pens. Nar. iv. p. 320) describes the horses of Caraccas as
occasionally eating salt meat.] It drizzled and sleeted all the way,
and was dark before we arrived at the tent.

At night the Tibetan dogs are let loose, when they howl dismally: on
one occasion they robbed me of all my meat, a fine piece of yak's
flesh. The yaks are also troublesome, and bad sleepers; they used to
try to effect an entrance into my tent, pushing their muzzles under
the flaps at the bottom, and awakening me with a snort and moist hot
blast. Before the second night I built a turf wall round the tent;
and in future slept with a heavy tripod by my side, to poke
at intruders.

Birds flock to the grass about Momay; larks, finches, warblers,
abundance of sparrows, feeding on the yak-droppings, and occasionally
the hoopoe; waders, cormorants, and wild ducks were sometimes seen in
the streams, but most of them were migrating south. The yaks are
driven out to pasture at sunrise, and home at sunset, till the middle
of the month, when they return to Yeumtong. All their droppings are
removed from near the tents, and piled in heaps; as these animals,
unlike their masters, will not sleep amid such dirt. These heaps
swarm with the maggots of two large flies, a yellow and black,
affording abundant food to red-legged crows, ravens, and swallows.
Butterflies are rare; the few are mostly _Colias, Hipparchia,
Polyommatus,_ and _Melitaea_; these I have seen feeding at 17,000
feet; when found higher, they have generally been carried up by
currents. Of beetles, an _Aphodeus,_ in yak-droppings, and an
_Elaphrus,_ a predaceous genus inhabiting swamps, are almost the only
ones I saw. The wild quadrupeds are huge sheep, in flocks of fifty,
the _Ovis Ammon_ called "Gnow." I never shot one, not having time to
pursue them for they were very seldom seen, and always at great
elevations. The larger marmot is common, and I found the horns of the
"Tchiru" antelope. Neither the wild horse, fox, hare, nor tailless
rat, cross the Donkia pass. White clover, shepherd's purse, dock,
plantain, and chickweed, are imported here by yaks; but the common
_Prunella_ of Europe is wild, and so is a groundsel like _Senecio
Jacobaea, Ranunculus, Sibbaldia,_ and 200 other plants. The grasses
are numerous; they belong chiefly to _Poa, Festuca, Stipa,_ and other
European genera.

	I repeatedly attempted to ascend both Kinchinjhow and Donkia from
Momay, and generally reached from 18,000 to 19,000 feet, but never
much higher.* [An elevation of 20,000 and perhaps 22,000 feet might,
I should think, easily be attained by practice, in Tibet, north of
Sikkim.] The observations taken on these excursions are sufficiently
illustrated by those of Donkia pass: they served chiefly to perfect
my map, measure the surrounding peaks, and determine the elevation
reached by plants; all of which were slow operations, the weather of
this month being so bad that I rarely returned dry to my tent; fog
and drizzle, if not sleet and snow, coming on during every day,
without exception.

I made frequent excursions to the great glacier of Kinchinjhow.
Its valley is about four miles long, broad and flat: Chango-khang*
[The elevation of this mountain is about 20,560 feet, by the mean of
several observations taken from surrounding localities.] rears its
blue and white cliffs 4,500 feet above its west flank, and throws
down avalanches of stones and snow into the valley. Hot springs*
[Supposing the mean temperature of the air at the elevation of the
Momay springs to be 26 degrees or 28 degrees, which may be
approximately assumed, and that, as some suppose, the heat of thermal
springs is due to the internal temperature of the globe; then
according to the law of increment of heat in descending (of 1 degree
for fifty feet) we should find the temperature of 110 degrees at a
depth of 4,100 feet, or at 11,900 feet above the level of the sea.
Direct experiment with internal heat has not, however, been carried
beyond 2000 feet below the surface, and as the ratio of increment
diminishes with the depth, that above assigned to the temperature of
110 degrees is no doubt much too little. The Momay springs more
probably owe their temperature to chemical decomposition of
sulphurets of metals. I found pyrites in Tibet on the north flank of
the mountain Kinchinjhow, in limestones asasociated with shales.]
burst from the ground near some granite rocks on its floor, about
16,000 feet above the sea, and only a mile below the glacier, and the
water collects in pools: its temperature is 110 degrees, and in
places 116 degrees, or 4 degrees hotter than that of the Yeumtong
hot-springs, though 4000 feet higher, and of precisely the same
character. A _Barbarea_ and some other plants make the neighbourhood
of the hot-springs a little oasis, and the large marmot is common,
uttering its sharp, chirping squeak.

The terminal moraine is about 500 feet high, quite barren, and thrown
obliquely across the valley, from north-east to south-west,
completely hiding the glacier. From its top successive smaller
parallel ridges (indicating the periodic retirements of the glacier)
lead down to the ice, which must have sunk several hundred feet. This
glacier descends from Kinchinjhow, the huge cliff of whose eastern
extremity dips into it. The surface, less than half a mile wide, is
exceedingly undulated, and covered with large pools of water, ninety
feet deep, and beds of snow, and is deeply corroded; gigantic blocks
are perched on pinnacles of ice on its surface, and the gravel cones*
[For a description of this curious phenomenon, which has been
illustrated by Agassiz, see "Forbes's Alps," p. 26 and 347.] are
often twenty feet high. The crevassing so conspicuous on the Swiss
glaciers is not so regular on this, and the surface appears more like
a troubled ocean; due, no doubt, to the copious rain and snow-falls
throughout the summer, and the corroding power of wet fogs.
The substance of the ice is ribboned, dirt-bands are seen from above
to form long loops on some parts, and the lateral moraines, like the
terminal, are high above the surface. These notes, made previous to
reading Professor Forbes's travels in the Alps, sufficiently show
that perpetual snow, whether as ice or glacier, obeys the same laws
in India as in Europe; and I have no remarks to offer on the
structure of glaciers, that are not well illustrated and explained in
the abovementioned admirable work.

Its average slope for a mile above the terminal moraines was less
than 5 degrees, and the height of its surface above the sea 16,500
feet by boiling-point; the thickness of its ice probably 400 feet.
Between the moraine and the west flank of the valley is a large lake,
with terraced banks, whose bottom (covered with fine felspathic silt)
is several hundred feet above that of the valley; it is half a mile
long, and a quarter broad, and fed partly by glaciers of the second
order on Chango-khang and Sebolah, and partly by filtration through
the lateral moraine.



Donkia glaciers -- Moraines -- Dome of ice -- Honey-combed surface --
Rocks of Donkia -- Metamorphic action of granite veins -- Accident to
instruments -- Sebolah pass -- Bees, and May-flies -- View --
Temperature -- Pulses of party -- Lamas and travellers at Momay --
Weather and climate -- Dr. Campbell leaves Dorjiling for Sikkim --
Leave Momay -- Yeumtong -- Lachoong -- Retardation of vegetation at
low elevations -- Choongtam -- Landslips and debacle -- Meet Dr.
Campbell -- Motives for his journey -- Second visit to Lachen valley
-- Autumnal tints -- Red currants -- Lachen Phipun -- Tungu --
Scenery -- Animals -- Poisonous rhododendrons -- Fire-wood -- Palung
-- Elevations -- Sitong -- Kongra Lama -- Tibetans -- Enter Tibet --
Desolate scenery -- Plants -- Animals -- Geology -- Cholamoo lakes --
Antelopes -- Return to Yeumtso -- Dr. Campbell lost -- Extreme cold
-- Headaches -- Tibetan Dingpun and guard -- Arms and accoutrements
-- Temperature of Yeumtso -- Migratory birds --  Visit of Dingpun --
Yeumtso lakes.

On the 20th of September I ascended to the great Donkia glaciers,
east of Momay; the valley is much longer than that leading to the
Kinchinjhow glacier, and at 16,000 or 17,000 feet elevation,
containing four marshes or lakes, alternating with as many transverse
moraines that have dammed the river. These moraines seem in some
cases to have been deposited where rocks in the bed of the valley
obstructed the downward progress of the ancient glacier; hence, when
this latter finally retired, it rested at these obstructions, and
accumulated there great deposits, which do not cross the valley, but
project from each side obliquely into it. The rocks _in situ_ on the
floor of the valley are all _moutonneed_ and polished on the top,
sides, and face looking up the valley, but are rugged on that looking
down it: gigantic blocks are poised on some. The lowest of the
ancient moraines completely crosses the river, which finds, its way
between the boulders.

Under the red cliff of Forked Donkia the valley becomes very broad,
bare, and gravelly, with a confusion of moraines, and turns more
northwards. At the angle, the present terminal moraine rises like a
mountain (I assumed it to be about 800 feet high),* [This is the
largest and longest terminal moraine backed by an existing glacier
that I examined with care: I doubt its being so high as the moraine
of the Allalein glacier below the Mat-maark sea in the Sachs valley
(Valais, Switzerland); but it is impossible to compare such objects
from memory: the Donkia one was much the most uniform in height.] and
crosses the valley from N.N.E. to S.S.W. From the summit, which rises
above the level of the glacier, and from which I assume its present
retirement, a most striking scene opened. The ice filling an immense
basin, several miles broad and long, formed a low dome,* [This
convexity of the ice is particularly alluded to by Forbes ("Travels
in the Alps," p.386), as the "renflement" of Rendu and "surface
bombee" of Agassiz, and is attributed to the effects of hydrostatic
pressure tending to press the lower layers of ice upwards to the
surface. My own impression at the time was, that the convexity of the
surface of the Donkia glacier was due to a subjacent mountain spur
running south from Donkia itself. I know, however, far too little of
the topography of this glacier to advance such a conjecture with any
confidence. In this case, as in all similar ones, broad expanses
being covered to an enormous depth with ice, the surface of the
latter must in some degree be modified by the ridges and valleys it
conceals. The typical "surface bombee," which is conspicuous in the
Himalaya glaciers, I was wont (in my ignorance of the mechanical laws
of glaciers) to attribute to the more rapid melting of the edges of
the glacier by the radiated heat of its lateral moraines and of the
flanks of the valley that it occupies.] with Forked Donkia on the
west, and a serried range of rusty-red scarped mountains, 20,000 feet
high on the north and east, separating large tributary glaciers.
Other still loftier tops of Donkia appeared behind these, upwards of
22,000 feet high, but I could not recognise the true summit (23,176
feet). The surface was very rugged, and so deeply honey-combed that
the foot often sank from six to eight inches in crisp wet ice.
I proceeded a mile on it, with much more difficulty than on any Swiss
glacier: this was owing to the elevation, and the corrosion of the
surface into pits and pools of water; the crevasses being but few and
distant. I saw no dirt-bands on looking down upon it from a point I
attained under the red cliff of Forked Donkia, at an elevation of
18,307 feet by barometer, and 18,597 by boiling-point. The weather
was very cold, the thermometer fell from 41 degrees to 34 degrees,
and it snowed heavily after 3 p.m.

The strike of all the rocks (gneiss with granite veins) seemed to be
north-east, and dip north-west 30 degrees. Such also were the strike
and dip on another spur from Donkia, north of this, which I ascended
to 19,000 feet, on the 26th of September: it abutted on the scarped
precipices, 3000 feet high, of that mountain. I had been attracted to
the spot by its bright orange-red colour, which I found to be caused
by peroxide of iron. The highly crystalline nature of the rocks, at
these great elevations, is due to the action of veins of fine-grained
granite, which sometimes alter the gneiss to such an extent that it
appears as if fused into a fine granite, with distinct crystals of
quartz and felspar; the most quartzy layers are then roughly
crystallized into prisms, or their particles are aggregated into
spheres composed of concentric layers of radiating crystals, as is
often seen in agates. The rearrangement of the mineral constituents
by heat goes on here just as in trap, cavities filled with crystals
being formed in rocks exposed to great heat and pressure. Where mica
abounds, it becomes black and metallic; and the aluminous matter is
crystallised in the form of garnets.


At these great heights the weather was never fine for more than an
hour at a time, and a driving sleet followed by thick snow drove me
down on both these occasions. Another time I ascended a third spur
from this great mountain, and was overtaken by a heavy gale and
thunderstorm, the latter is a rare phenomenon: it blew down my tripod
and instruments which I had thought securely Propped with stones, and
the thermometers were broken, but fortunately not the barometer.
On picking up the latter, which lay with its top down the hill, a
large bubble of air appeared, which I passed up and down the tube,
and then allowed to escape; when I heard a rattling of broken glass
in the cistern. Having another barometer* [This barometer (one of
Newman's portable instruments) I have now at Kew: it was compared
with the Royal Society's standard before leaving England; and varied
according to comparisons made with the Calcutta standard 0.012 during
its travels; on leaving Calcutta its error was 0; and on arriving in
England, by the standard of the Royal Society, +.004. I have given in
the Appendix some remarks on the use of these barometers, which
(though they have obvious defects), are less liable to derangement,
far more portable, and stand much heavier shocks than those of any
other construction with which I am familiar.] at my tent, I hastened
to ascertain by comparison whether the instrument which had travelled
with me from England, and taken so many thousand observations, was
seriously damaged: to my delight an error of 0.020 was all I could
detect at Momay and all other lower stations. On my return to
Dorjiling in December, I took it to pieces, and found the lower part
of the bulb of the attached thermometer broken off, and floating on
the mercury. Having quite expected this, I always checked the
observations of the attached thermometer by another, but--how, it is
not easy to say--the broken one invariably gave a correct


The Kinchinjhow spurs are not accessible to so great an elevation as
those of Donkia, but they afford finer views over Tibet, across the
ridge connecting Kinchinjow with Donkia.

Broad summits here, as on the opposite side of the valley, are quite
bare of snow at 18,000 feet, though where they project as sloping
hog-backed spurs from the parent mountain, the snows of the latter
roll down on them and form glacial caps, the reverse of glaciers in
valleys, but which overflow, as it were, on all sides of the slopes,
and are ribboned* [The convexity of the curves, however, seems to be
upwards. Such reversed glaciers, ending abruptly on broad stony
shoulders quite free of snow, should on no account be taken as
indicating the lower limit of perpetual snow.] and crevassed.

On the 18th of September I ascended the range which divides the
Lachen from the Lachoong valley, to the Sebolah pass, a very sharp
ridge of gneiss, striking north-west and dipping north-east, which
runs south from Kinchinjhow to Chango-khang. A yak-track led across
the Kinchinjhow glacier, along the bank of the lake, and thence
westward up a very steep spur, on which was much glacial ice and
snow, but few plants above 16,000 feet. At nearly 17,000 feet I
passed two small lakes, on the banks of one of which I found bees, a
May-fly (_Ephemera_) and gnat; the two latter bred on stones in the
water, which (the day being fine) had a temperature of 53 degrees,
while that of the large lake at the glacier, 1000 feet lower, was
only 39 degrees.

The view from the summit commands the whole castellated front of
Kinchinjhow, the sweep of the Donkia cliffs to the east,
Chango-khang's blunt cone of ribbed snow* [This ridging or furrowing
of steep snow-beds is explained at vol. i, chapter x.] over head,
while to the west, across the grassy Palung dunes rise Chomiomo, the
Thlonok mountains, and Kinchinjunga in the distance.* [The latter
bore 241 degrees 30 minutes; it was distant about thirty-four miles,
and subtended an angle of 3 degrees 2 minutes 30 seconds. The rocks
on its north flanks were all black, while those forming the upper
10,000 feet of the south face were white: hence, the top is probably
granite, overlaid by the gneiss on the north.] The Palung plains, now
yellow with withered grass, were the most curious part of the view:
hemmed in by this range which rises 2000 feet above them, and by the
Lachen hills on the east, they appeared a dead level, from which
Kinchinjhow reared its head, like an island from the ocean.* [It is
impossible to contemplate the abrupt flanks of all these lofty
mountains, without contrasting them with the sloping outlines that
prevail in the southern parts of Sikkim. All such precipices are, I
have no doubt, the results of sea action; and all posterior influence
of sub-aerial action, aqueous or glacial, tends to wear these
precipices into slopes, to fill up valleys and to level mountains. Of
all such influences heavy rain-falls and a luxuriant vegetation are
probably the most active; and these features are characteristic of
the lower valleys of Sikkim, which are consequently exposed to very
different conditions of wear and tear from those which prevail on
these loftier rearward ranges.]  The black tents of the Tibetans were
still there, but the flocks were gone. The broad fosse-like valley of
the Chachoo was at my feet, with the river winding along its bottom,
and its flanks dotted with black juniper bushes.

The temperature at this elevation, between 1 and 3 p.m., varied from
38 degrees to 59 degrees; the mean being 46.5 degrees, with the
dew-point 34.6 degrees. The height I made 17,585 feet by barometer,
and 17,517 by boiling-point. I tried the pulses of eight, persons
after two hours' rest; they varied from 80 to 112, my own being 104.
As usual at these heights, all the party were suffering from
giddiness and headaches.

Throughout September various parties passed my tent at Momay,
generally Lamas or traders: the former, wrapped in blankets, wearing
scarlet and gilt mitres, usually rode grunting yaks, which were
sometimes led by a slave-boy or a mahogany-faced nun, with a broad
yellow sheep-skin cap with flaps over her ears, short petticoats, and
striped boots. The domestic utensils, pots, pans, and bamboos of
butter, tea-churn, bellows, stools, books, and sacred implements,
usually hung rattling on all sides of his holiness, and a sumpter yak
carried the tents and mats for sleeping. On several occasions large
parties of traders, with thirty or forty yaks* [About 600 loaded yaks
are said to cross the Donkia pass annually.] laden with planks,
passed, and occasionally a shepherd with Tibet sheep, goats, and
ponies. I questioned many of these travellers about the courses of
the Tibetan rivers; they all agreed* [One lad only, declared that the
Kambajong river flowed north-west to Dobtah and Sarrh, and thence
turned north to the Yaru; but all Campbell's itineraries, as well as
mine, make the Dobtah lake drain into the Chomachoo, north of
Wallanchoon; which latter river the Nepalese also affirm flows into
Nepal, as the Arun. The Lachen and Lachoong Phipuns both insisted on
this, naming to me the principal towns on the way south-west from
Kambajong along the river to Tingri Maidan, _via_ Tashirukpa Chait,
which is north of Wallanchoon pass.] in stating the Kambajong or
Chomachoo liver, north of the Lachen, to be the Arun of Nepal, and
that it rose near the Ramchoo lake (of Turner's route). The lake
itself discharges either into the Arun, or into the Painomchoo
(flowing to the Yaru); but this point I could never satisfactorily

The weather at Momay, during September, was generally bad after 11
a.m.: little snow or rain fell, but thin mists and drizzle prevailed;
less than one inch and a half of rain was collected, though upwards
of eleven fell at Calcutta, and rather more at Dorjiling.
The mornings were sometimes fine, cold, and sunny, with a north wind
which had blown down the valley all night, and till 9 a.m., when the
south-east wind, with fog, came on. Throughout the day a north
current blew above the southern; and when the mist was thin; the air
sparkled with spiculae of snow, caused by the cold dry upper current
condensing the vapours of the lower. This southern current passes
over the tops of the loftiest mountains, ascending to 24,000 feet,
and discharging frequent showers in Tibet, as far north as Jigatzi,
where, however, violent dry easterly gales are the most prevalent.

The equinoctial gales set in on the 21st, with a falling barometer,
and sleet at night; on the 23rd and 24th it snowed heavily, and being
unable to light a fire at the entrance of my tent, I spent two
wretched days, taking observations; on the 25th it cleared, and the
snow soon melted. Frosty nights succeeded, but the thermometer only
fell to 31 degrees once during the month, and the maximum once rose
to 62.5 degrees. The mean temperature from the 9th to the 30th
September was 41.6 degrees,* [The result of fifty-six comparative
observations between Calcutta and Momay, give 40.6 degrees
difference, which, after corrections, allows 1 degree Fahr. for every
438 feet of ascent.] which coincided with that of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.;
the mean maximum, 52.2 degrees, minimum, 34.7 degrees, and consequent
range, 17.5 degrees.* [At Dorjiling the September range is only 9.5
degrees; and at Calcutta 10 degrees.] On seven nights the radiating
thermometer fell much below the temperature of the air, the mean
being 10.5 degrees and maximum 14.2 degrees; and on seven mornings
the sun heated the black-bulb thermometer considerably, on the mean
to 62.6 degrees above the air; maximum 75.2 degrees, and minimum, 43
degrees. The greatest heat of the day occurred at noon: the most
rapid rise of temperature (5 degrees) between 8 and 9 a.m., and the
greatest fall (5.5 degrees), between 3 and 4 p.m. A sunk thermometer
fell from 52.5 degrees to 51.5 degrees between the 11th and 14th,
when I was obliged to remove the thermometer owing to the accident
mentioned above. The mercury in the barometer rose and fell
contemporaneously with that at Calcutta and Dorjiling, but the amount
of tide was considerably less, and, as is usual during the
equinoctial month, on some days it scarcely moved, whilst on others
it rose and fell rapidly. The tide amounted to 0.062 of an inch.

On the 28th of the month the Singtam Soubah came up from Yeumtong, to
request leave to depart for his home, on account of his wife's
illness; and to inform me that Dr. Campbell had left Dorjiling,
accompanied (in compliance with the Rajah's orders) by the Tchebu
Lama. I therefore left Momay on the 30th, to meet him at Choongtam,
arriving at Yeumtong the same night, amid heavy rain and sleet.

Autumnal tints reigned at Yeumtong, and the flowers had disappeared
from its heath-like flat; a small eatable cherry with a wrinkled
stone was ripe, and acceptable in a country so destitute of fruit.*
[The absence of _Vaccinia_ (whortleberries and cranberries) and
eatable _Rubi_ (brambles) in the alpine regions of the Himalaya is
very remarkable, and they are not replaced by any substitute.
With regard to Vaccinium, this is the more anomalous, as several
species grow in the temperate regions of Sikkim.] Thence I descended
to Lachoong, on the 1st of October, again through heavy rain, the
snow lying on the Tunkra mountain at 14,000 feet. The larch was
shedding its leaves, which turn red before they fall; but the annual
vegetation was much behind that at 14,000 feet, and so many late
flowerers, such as _Umbelliferae_ and _Compositae,_ had come into
blossom, that the place still looked gay and green: the blue climbing
gentian (_Crawfurdia_) now adorned the bushes; this plant would be a
great acquisition in English gardens. A _Polygonum_ still in flower
here, was in ripe fruit near Momay, 6000 feet higher up the valley.

On the following day I made a long and very fatiguing march to
Choongtam, but the coolies were not all able to accomplish it.
The backwardness of the flora in descending was even more conspicuous
than on the previous day: the jungles, at 7000 feet, being gay with a
handsome Cucurbitaceous plant. Crossing the Lachoong cane-bridge, I
paid the tribute of a sigh to the memory of my poor dog, and reached
my old camping-ground at Choongtam by 10 p.m., having been marching
rapidly for twelve hours. My bed and tent came up two hours later,
and not before the leeches and mosquitos had taxed me severely.
On the 4th of October I heard the nightingale for the first time
this season.

Expecting Dr. Campbell on the following morning, I proceeded down the
river to meet him: the whole valley was buried under a torrent or
debacle of mud, shingle, and boulders, and for half a mile the stream
was dammed up into a deep lake. Amongst the gneiss and granite
boulders brought down by this debacle, I collected some actinolites;
but all minerals are extremely rare in Sikkim and I never heard of a
gem or crystal of any size or beauty, or of an ore of any
consequence, being found in this country.

I met my friend on the other side of the mud torrent, and I was truly
rejoiced to see him, though he was looking much the worse for his
trying journey through the hot valleys at this season; in fact, I
know no greater trial of the constitution than the exposure and hard
exercise that is necessary in traversing these valleys, below 5000
feet, in the rainy season: delay is dangerous, and the heat, anxiety,
and bodily suffering from fatigue, insects, and bruises, banish
sleep, and urge the restless traveller onward to higher and more
healthy regions. Dr. Campbell had, I found, in addition to the
ordinary dangers of such a journey, met with an accident which might
have proved serious; his pony having been dashed to pieces by falling
over a precipice, a fate he barely escaped himself, by adroitly
slipping from the saddle when he felt the animal's foot giving way.

On our way back to Choongtam, he detailed to me the motives that had
led to his obtaining the authority of the Deputy-Governor of Bengal
(Lord Dalhousie being absent) for his visiting Sikkim. Foremost, was
his earnest desire to cultivate a better understanding with the Rajah
and his officers. He had always taken the Rajah's part, from a
conviction that he was not to blame for the misunderstandings which
the Sikkim officers pretended to exist between their country and
Dorjiling; he had, whilst urgently remonstrating with the Rajah,
insisted on forbearance on my part, and had long exercised it
himself. In detailing the treatment to which I was subjected, I had
not hesitated to express my opinion that the Rajah was more
compromised by it than his Dewan: Dr. Campbell, on the contrary, knew
that the Dewan was the head and front of the whole system of
annoyance. In one point of view it mattered little who was in the
right; but the transaction was a violation of good faith on the part
of the Sikkim government towards the British, for which the Rajah,
however helpless, was yet responsible. To act upon my representations
alone would have been unjust, and no course remained but for Dr.
Campbell to inquire personally into the matter. The authority to do
this gave him also the opportunity of becoming acquainted with the
country which we were bound to protect, as well by our interest as by
treaty, but from which we were so jealously excluded, that should any
contingency occur, we were ignorant of what steps to take for
defence, and, indeed, of what we should have to defend.

On the 6th of October we left Choongtam for my second visit to the
Kongra Lama pass, hoping to get round by the Cholamoo lakes and the
Donkia pass. As the country beyond the frontier was uninhabited, the
Tchebu Lama saw no difficulty in this, provided the Lachen Phipun and
the Tibetans did not object. Our great obstacle was the Singtam
Soubah, who (by the Rajah's order) accompanied us to clear the road,
and give us every facility, but who was very sulky, and undisguisedly
rude to Campbell; he was in fact extremely jealous of the Lama, who
held higher authority than he did, and who alone had the Rajah's

Our first day's march was of about ten miles to one of the
river-flats, which was covered with wild apple-trees, whose fruit,
when stewed with sugar, we found palatable. The Lachen river, though
still swollen, was comparatively clear; the rains usually ceasing, or
at least moderating, in October: its water was about 5 degrees colder
than in the beginning of August.

During the second day's march we were stopped at the Taktoong river
by the want of a bridge, which the Singtam Soubah refused to exert
himself to have repaired; its waters were, however, so fallen, that
our now large party soon bridged it with admirable skill. We encamped
the second night on Chateng, and the following day made a long march,
crossing the Zemu, and ascending half-way to Tallum Samdong.
The alpine foliage was rapidly changing colour; and that of the
berberry turning scarlet, gave a warm glow to the mountain above the
forest. Lamteng village was deserted: turnips were maturing near the
houses, and buckwheat on the slope behind; the latter is a
winter-crop at lower elevations, and harvested in April. At Zemu
Samdong the willow-leaves were becoming sear and yellow, and the
rose-bushes bore enormous scarlet hips, two inches long, and covered
with bristles; they were sweet, and rather good eating. Near Tungu
(where we arrived on the 9th) the great Sikkim currant was in fruit;
its berries are much larger than the English, and of the same
beautiful red colour, but bitter and very acid; they are, however,
eaten by the Tibetans, who call them "Kewdemah."

Near the village I found Dr. Campbell remonstrating with the Lachen
Phipun on the delays and rude treatment I had received in June and
July: the man, of course, answered every question with falsehoods,
which is the custom of these people, and produced the Rajah's orders
for my being treated with every civility, as a proof that he must
have behaved as he ought! The Singtam Soubah, as was natural, hung
back, for it was owing to him alone that the orders had been
contravened, and the Phipun appealed to the bystanders for the truth
of this.

The Phipun (accompanied by his Larpun or subordinate officer) had
prepared for us a sumptuous refreshment of tea soup, which was
brewing by the road, and in which all animosities were soon washed
away. We took up our abode at Tungu in a wooden but under the great
rock, where we were detained for several days by bad weather. I was
assured that during all August and September the weather had been
uniformly gloomy, as at Momay, though little rain had fallen.

We had much difficulty in purchasing a sufficient dumber of blankets*
[These were made of goat's wool, teazed into a satiny surface by
little teazle-like brushes of bamboo.] for our people, and in
arranging for our journey, to which the Lachen Phipun was favourable,
promising us ponies for the expedition. The vegetation around was
wholly changed since my July visit: the rhododendron scrub was
verdigris-green from the young leaves which burst in autumn, and
expose at the end of each branchlet a flower-bud covered with
resinous scales, which are thrown off in the following spring.
The jungle was spotted yellow with the withered birch, maple and
mountain-ash, and scarlet with berberry bushes; while above, the
pastures were yellow-brown with the dead grass, and streaked
with snow.

Amongst other luxuries, we procured the flesh of yak calves, which is
excellent veal: we always returned the foot for the mother to lick
while being milked, without which she yields nothing. The yak goes
nine months with calf, and drops one every two years, bearing
altogetber ten or twelve: the common Sikkim cow of lower elevations,
at Dorjiling invariably goes from nine and a half to ten months, and
calves annually: ponies go eleven months, and foal nearly every year.
In Tibet the sheep are annually sheared; the ewes drop their young in
spring and autumn, but the lambs born at the latter period often die
of cold and starvation, and double lambing is unknown; whereas, in
the plains of Bengal (where, however, sheep cannot be said to thrive
without pulse fodder) twins are constantly born. At Dorjiling the
sheep drop a lamb once in the season. The Tibetan mutton we generally
found dry and stringy.

In these regions many of my goats and kids had died foaming at the
mouth and grinding their teeth; and I here discovered the cause to
arise from their eating the leaves of _Rhododendron cinnabarinum*
[The poisonous honey produced by other species is alluded to at
vol. i., chapter ix. An _Andromeda_ and a _Gualtheria,_ I have been
assured are equally deleterious.] ("Kema Kechoong," Lepcha: Kema
signifying Rhododendron): this species alone is said to be poisonous;
and when used as fuel, it causes the face to swell and the eyes to
inflame; of which I observed several instances. As the subject of
fire-wood is of every-day interest to the traveller in these regions,
I may here mention that the rhododendron woods afford poor fires;
juniper burns the brightest, and with least smoke. _Abies Webbiana,_
though emitting much smoke, gives a cheerful fire, far superior to
larch,* [The larch of northern Asia (_Larix Europoea_) is said to
produce a pungent smoke, which I never observed to be the case with
the Sikkim species.] spruce, or _Abies Brunoniana._ At Dorjiling, oak
is the common fuel; alder is also good. Chestnut is invariably used
for blacksmith's charcoal. Magnolia has a disagreeable odour, and
laurel burns very badly.

The phenomenon of phosphorescence is most conspicuous on stacks of
fire-wood. At Dorjiling, during the damp, warm, summer months (May to
October), at elevations of 5000 to 8000 feet, it may be witnessed
every night by penetrating a few yards into the forest--at least it
was so in 1848 and 1849; and during my stay there billets of decayed
wood were repeatedly sent to me by residents, with inquiries as to
the cause of their luminosity. It is no exaggeration to say that one
does not need to move from the fireside to see this phenomenon, for
if there is a partially decayed log amongst the fire-wood, it is
almost sure to glow with a pale phosphoric light. A stack of
fire-wood, collected near my host's (Mr. Hodgson) cottage, presented
a beautiful spectacle for two months (in July and August), and on
passing it at night, I had to quiet my pony, who was always alarmed
by it. The phenomenon invariably accompanies decay, and is common on
oak, laurel (_Tetranthera_), birch, and probably other timbers; it
equally appears on cut wood and on stumps, but is most frequent on
branches lying close to the ground in the wet forests. I have reason
to believe that it spreads with great rapidity from old surfaces to
freshly cut ones. That it is a vital phenomenon, and due to the
mycelium of a fungus, I do not in the least doubt, for I have
observed it occasionally circumscribed by those black lines which are
often seen to bound mycelia on dead wood, and to precede a more rapid
decay. I have often tried, but always in vain, to coax these mycelia
into developing some fungus, by placing them in damp rooms, etc.
When camping in the mountains, I frequently caused the natives to
bring  phosphorescent wood into my tent, for the pleasure of watching
its soft undulating light, which appears to pale and glow with every
motion of the atmosphere; but except in this difference of intensity,
it presents no change in appearance night after night. Alcohol, heat,
and dryness soon dissipate it; electricity I never tried. It has no
odour, and my dog, who had a fine sense of smell, paid no heed when
it was laid under his nose.* [As far as my observations go, this
phenomenon of light is confined to the lower orders of vegetable
life, to the fungi alone, and is not dependent on irritability.
I have never seen luminous flowers or roots, nor do I know of any
authenticated instance of such, which may not be explained by the
presence of mycelium or of animal life. In the animal kingdom,
luminosity is confined, I believe, to the Invertebrata, and is
especially common amongst the Radiata and Mollusca; it is also
frequent in the Entromostracous Crustacea, and in various genera of
most orders of insects. In all these, even in the Sertulariae, I have
invariably observed the light to be increased by irritation, in which
respect the luminosity of animal life differs from that of

The weather continuing bad, and snow falling, the country people
began to leave for their winter-quarters at Lamteng. In the evenings
we enjoyed the company of the Phipun and Tchebu Lama, who relished a
cup of sugarless tea more than any other refreshment we could offer.
From them we collected much Tibetan information:--the former was an
inveterate smoker, using a pale, mild tobacco, mixed largely with
leaves of the small wild Tibetan Rhubarb, called "Chula." Snuff is
little used, and is principally procured from the plains of India.

We visited Palung twice, chiefly in hopes that Dr. Campbell might see
the magnificent prospect of Kinchinjhow from its plains: the first
time we gained little beyond a ducking, but on the second (October
the 15th) the view was superb; and I likewise caught a glimpse of
Kinchinjunga from the neighbouring heights, bearing south 60 degrees
west and distant forty miles. I also measured barometrically the
elevation at the great chait on the plains, and found it 15,620 feet,
and by carefully boiled thermometers, 15,283, on the 13th October,
and 15,566 on the 15th: the difference being due to the higher
temperature on the latter day, and to a rise of 0.3 degree on both
boiling-point thermometers above what the same instruments stood at
on the 13th. The elevation of Tungu from the October barometrical
observations was only seven feet higher than that given by those of
July; the respective heights being 12,766 feet in July, and 12,773 in
October.* [The elevation of Tungu by boiling-point was 12,650 feet by
a set of July observations, 12,818 by a set taken on the 11th of
October, and 12,544 by a set on the 14th of October: the
discrepancies were partly due to the temperature corrections, but
mainly to the readings of the thermometers, which were--
July 28, sunset 189.5, air 47.3 degrees, elev. 12,650
Oct. 11, noon   189.5, air 37.6 degrees, elev. 12,818
Oct. 14, sunset 190.1, air 45.3 degrees, elev. 12,544]
The mean temperature had fallen from 50 degrees in July to 41
degrees, and that of the sunk thermometer from 57 degrees to 51.4
degrees. The mean range in July was 23.3 degrees, and in October 13.8
degrees; the weather during the latter period being, however,
uniformly cold and misty, this was much below the mean monthly range,
which probably exceeds 30 degrees. Much more rain fell in October at
Tungu than at Dorjiling, which is the opposite to what occurs during
the rainy season.

_October 15th._ Having sent the coolies forward, with instructions to
halt and camp on this side of the Kongra Lama pass, we followed them,
taking the route by Palung, and thence over the hills to the Lachen,
to the east of which we descended, and further up its valley joined
the advanced party in a rocky glen, called Sitong, an advantageous
camping ground, from being sheltered by rocks which ward off the keen
blasts: its elevation is 15,370 feet above the sea, and the
magnificent west cliff of Kinchinjhow towers over it not a mile
distant, bearing due east, and subtending an angle of 24.3 degrees.
The afternoon was misty, but at 7 p.m. the south-east wind fell, and
was immediately succeeded by the biting north return current, which
dispelled the fog: hoar-frost sparkled on the ground, and the moon
shone full on the snowy head of Kinchinjhow, over which the milky-way
and the broad flashing orbs of the stars formed a jewelled diadem.
The night was very windy and cold, though the thermometer fell no
lower than 22 degrees, that placed in a polished parabolic reflector
to 20 degrees, and another laid on herbage to 17.5 degrees.

On the 16th we were up early. I felt very anxious about the prospect
of our getting round by Donkia pass and Cholamoo, which would enable
me to complete the few remaining miles of my long survey of the
Teesta river, and which promised immense results in the views I
should obtain of the country, and of the geology and botany of these
lofty snowless regions. Campbell, though extremely solicitous to
obtain permission from the Tibetan guard, (who were waiting for us on
the frontier), was nevertheless bound by his own official position to
yield at once to their wishes, should they refuse us a passage.

The sun rose on our camp at 7.30 a.m., when the north wind fell; and
within an hour afterwards the temperature had risen to 45 degrees.
Having had our sticks* [It was an invariable custom of our Lepcba and
Tibetan attendants, to warm the handles of our sticks in cold
weather, before starting on our daily marches. This is one of many
little instances I could adduce, of their thoughtfulness and
attention to the smallest comforts of the stranger and wanderer in
their lands.] warmed and handed to us, we started on ponies,
accompanied by the Lama only, to hold a parley with the Tibetans;
ordering the rest of the party to follow at their leisure. We had not
proceeded far when we were joined by two Tibetan Sepoys, who, on our
reaching the pass, bellowed lustily for their companions; when
Campbell and the Lama drew up at the chait of Kongra Lama, and
announced his wish to confer with their commandant.

My anxiety was now wound up to a pitch; I saw men with matchlocks
emerging from amongst the rocks under Chomiomo, and despairing of
permission being obtained, I goaded my pony with heels and stick, and
dashed on up the Lachen valley, resolved to make the best of a
splendid day, and not turn back till I had followed the river to the
Cholamoo lakes: The Sepoys followed me a few paces, but running being
difficult at 16,000 feet, they soon gave up the chase.

A few miles ride in a north-east direction over an open, undulating
country, brought me to the Lachen, flowing westwards in a broad,
open, stony valley, bounded by Kinchinjhow on the south, (its face
being as precipitous as that on the opposite side), and on the north
by the Peukathlo, a low range of rocky, sloping mountains, of which
the summits were 18,000 to 19,000 feet above the sea. Enormous
erratic blocks of gneiss strewed the ground, which was sandy or
gravelly, and cut into terraces along the shallow, winding river, the
green and sparkling waters of which rippled over pebbles, or expanded
into lagoons. The already scanty vegetation diminished rapidly: it
consisted chiefly of scattered bushes of a dwarf scrubby honeysuckle
and tufts of nettle, both so brittle as to be trodden into powder,
and the short leafless twiggy _Ephedra,_ a few inches higher.
The most alpine rhododendron (_R. nivale_) spread its small rigid
branches close to the ground; the hemispherical _Arenaria,_ another
type of sterility, rose here and there, and tufts of _Myosotis,
Artemisia, Astragali,_ and _Adrosace,_ formed flat cushions level
with the soil. Grass was very scarce, but a running wiry sedge
(_Carex Moorcroftii_) bound the sand, like the _Carex arenaria_ of
our English coasts.

A more dismally barren country cannot well be conceived, nor one more
strongly contrasting with the pastures of Palung at an equal
elevation. The long lofty wall of Kinchinjhow and Donkia presents an
effectual barrier to the transmission of moisture to the head of the
Lachen valley, which therefore becomes a type of such elevations in
Tibet. As I proceeded, the ground became still more sandy, chirping
under the pony's feet; and where harder, it was burrowed by
innumerable marmots, foxes, and the "Goomchen," or tail-less rat
(_Lagomys badius_), sounding hollow to the tread, and at last
becoming so dangerous that I was obliged to dismount and walk.

The geological features changed as rapidly as those of the climate
and vegetation, for the strike of the rocks being north-west, and the
dip north-east, I was rising over the strata that overlie the gneiss.
The upper part of Kinchinjhow is composed of bold ice-capped cliffs
of gneiss; but the long spurs that stretch northwards from it are of
quartz, conglomerates, slates, and earthy red clays, forming the
rounded terraced hills I had seen from Donkia pass. Between these
spurs were narrow valleys, at whose mouths stupendous blocks of
gneiss rest on rocks of a much later geological formation.

Opposite the most prominent of these spurs the river (16,800 feet
above the sea) runs west, forming marshes, which were full of
_Zannichellia palustris_ and _Ranunculus aquatilis,_ both English and
Siberian plants: the waters contained many shells, of a species of
_Lymnaea_;* [This is the most alpine living shell in the world; my
specimens being from nearly 17,000 feet elevation; it is the _Lymnaea
Hookeri,_ Reeve ("Proceedings of the Zoological Society," No. 204).]
and the soil near the edge, which was covered with tufts of short
grass, was whitened with effloresced carbonate of soda. Here were
some square stone enclosures two feet high, used as pens, and for
pitching tents in; within them I gathered some unripe barley.

Beyond this I recognised a hill of which I had taken bearings from
Donkia pass, and a few miles further, on rounding a great spur of
Kinchinjunga, I arrived in sight of Cholamoo lakes, with the Donkia
mountain rearing its stupendous precipices of rock and ice on the
east. My pony was knocked up, and I felt very giddy from the exertion
and elevation; I had broken his bridle, and so led him on by my plaid
for the last few miles to the banks of the lake; and there, with the
pleasant sound of the waters rippling at my feet, I yielded for a few
moments to those emotions of gratified ambition which, being
unalloyed by selfish considerations for the future; become springs of
happiness during the remainder of one's life.

The landscape about Cholamoo lakes was simple in its elements, stern
and solemn; and though my solitary situation rendered it doubly
impressive to me, I doubt whether the world contains any scene with
more sublime associations than this calm sheet of water, 17,000 feet
above the sea, with the shadows of mountains 22,000 to 24,000 feet
high, sleeping on its bosom.

There was much short grass about the lake, on which large antelopes,
"Chiru" (_Antilope Hodgsoni_,* [I found the horns of this animal on
the south side of the Donkia pass, but I never saw a live one except
in Tibet. The _Procapra_ is described by Mr. Hodgson, "Bengal As.
Soc. Jour., 1846, p. 388," and is introduced into the cut in this
chapter.] and deer, "Goa" (_Procapra picticaudata,_ Hodgson), were
feeding. There were also many slate-coloured hales with white rumps
(_Lepus oiostolus_), with marmots and tail-less rats. The abundance
of animal life was wonderful, compared with the want of it on the
south side of Donkia pass, not five miles distant in a straight line!
it is partly due to the profusion of carbonate of soda, of which all
ruminants are fond, and partly to the dryness of the climate, which
is favourable to all burrowing quadrupeds. A flock of common English
teal were swimming in the lake, the temperature of  which was
55 degrees.

Illustration--ANTELOPE'S HEAD.* {The accompanying figures of the
heads of the Chiru (_Antilope Hodgsoni_), were sketched by Lieut.
Maxwell (of the Bengal Artillery), from a pair brought to Dorjiling;
it is the so-called unicorn of Tibet, and of MM. HuC and Gabet's
narrative,--a name which the profile no doubt suggested.]

I had come about fifteen miles from the pass, and arrived at 1 p.m.,
remaining half an hour. I could not form an idea as to whether
Campbell had followed or not, and began to speculate on the
probability of passing the night in the open air, by the warm side of
my steed. Though the sun shone brightly, the wind was bitterly cold,
and I arrived at the stone dykes of Yeumtso at 3 p.m., quite
exhausted with fatigue and headache. I there found, to my great
relief, the Tchebu Lama and Lachen Phipun: they were in some alarm at
my absence, for they thought I was not aware of the extreme severity
of the temperature on the north side of the snows, or of the risk of
losing my way; they told me that after a long discourse with the
Dingpun (or commander) of the Tibetan Sepoys, the latter had allowed
all the party to pass; that the Sepoys had brought on the coolies,
who were close behind, but that they themselves had seen nothing of
Campbell; of whom the Lama then went in search.

The sun set behind Chomiomo at 5 p.m., and the wind at once dropped,
so local are these violent atmospheric currents, which are caused by
the heating of the upper extremities of these lofty valleys, and
consequent rarefaction of the air. Intense terrestrial radiation
immediately follows the withdrawal of the sun's rays, and the
temperature sinks rapidly.

Soon after sunset the Lama returned, bringing Campbell; who, having
mistaken some glacier-fed lakes at the back of Kinchinjhow for those
of Cholamoo, was looking for me. He too had speculated on having to
pass the night under a rock, with one plaid for himself and servant;
in which case I am sure they would both have been frozen to death,
having no pony to lie down beside. He told me that after I had
quitted Kongra Lama, leaving him with the Tchebu Lama and Phipun, the
Dingpun and twenty men came up, and very civilly but formally forbade
their crossing the frontier; but that upon explaining his motives,
and representing that it would save him ten days' journey, the
Dingpun had relented, and promised to conduct the whole party to the
Donkia pass.

We pitched our little tent in the corner of the cattle-pen, and our
coolies soon afterwards came up; mine were in capital health, though
suffering from headaches, but Campbell's were in a distressing state
of illness and fatigue, with swollen faces and rapid pulses, and some
were insensible from symptoms like pressure on the brain;* [I have
never experienced bleeding at the nose, ears, lips or eyelids, either
in my person or that of my companions, on these occasions; nor did I
ever meet with a recent traveller who has. Dr. Thomson has made the
same remark, and when in Switzerland together we were assured by
Auguste Balmat, Francois Coutet, and other experienced Mont Blanc
guides, that they never witnessed these symptoms nor the blackness of
the sky, so frequently insisted upon by alpine travellers.] these
were chiefly Ghorkas (Nepalese). The Tibetan Dingpun and his guard
arrived last of all, he was a droll little object, short, fat, deeply
marked with small-pox, swarthy, and greasy; he was robed in a green
woollen mantle, and was perched on the back of a yak, which also
carried his bedding, and cooking utensils, the latter rattling about
its flanks, horns, neck, and every point of support: two other yaks
bore the tents of the party. His followers were tall savage looking
fellows, with broad swarthy faces, and their hair in short pig-tails.
They wore the long-sleeved cloak, short trousers, and boots, all of
thick woollen, and felt caps on their heads. Each was armed with a
long matchlock slung over his back, with a moveable rest having two
prongs like a fork, and a hinge, so as to fold up along the barrel,
when the prongs project behind the shoulders like antelope horns,
giving the uncouth warrior a droll appearance. A dozen cartridges,
each in an iron case, were slung round the waist, and they also wore
the long knife, flint, steel, and iron tobacco-pipe, pouch, and
purse, suspended to a leathern girdle.

The night was fine, but intensely cold, and the vault of heaven was
very dark, and blazing with stars; the sir was electrical, and flash
lightning illumined the sky; this was the reflection of a storm that
was not felt at Dorjiling, but which raged on the plains of India,
beyond the Terai, fully 120 miles, and perhaps 150, south of our
position. No thunder was heard. The thermometer fell to 5 degrees,
and that in the reflector to 3.5 degrees; at sunrise it rose to 10
degrees, and soon after 8 a.m. to 33 degrees; till this hour the
humidity was great, and a thin mist hung over the frozen surface of
the rocky ground; when this dispersed, the air became very dry, and
the black-bulb thermometer in the sun rose 60 degrees above the
temperature in the shade. The light of the sun, though sometimes
intercepted by vapours aloft, was very brilliant.* [My black glass
photometer shut out the sun's disc at 10.509 inches, from the mean of
four sets of observations taken between 7 and 10 a.m.]

This being the migrating season, swallows flitted through the air;
finches, larches, and sparrows were hopping over the sterile soil,
seeking food, though it was difficult to say what. The geese* [An
enormous quantity of water-fowl breed in Tibet, including many Indian
species that migrate no further north. The natives collect their eggs
for the markets at Jigatzi, Giantchi, and Lhassa, along the banks of
the Yarn river, Ramchoo, and Yarbru and Dochen lakes. Amongst other
birds the Sara, or great crane of India (see "Turner's Tibet,"
p. 212), repairs to these enormous elevations to breed. The fact of
birds characteristic of the tropics dwelling for months in such
climates is a very instructive one, and should be borne in mind in
our speculations upon the climate supposed to be indicated by the
imbedded bones of birds.] which had roosted by the river, cackled;
the wild ducks quacked and plumed themselves; ouzels and waders
screamed or chirped; and all rejoiced as they prepared themselves for
the last flight of the year, to the valleys of the southern Himalaya,
to the Teesta, and other rivers of the Terai and plains of India.

The Dingpun paid his respects to us in the morning, wearing, besides
his green cloak, a white cap with a green glass button, denoting his
rank; he informed us that he had written to his superior officer at
Kambajong, explaining his motives for conducting us across the
frontier, and he drew from his breast a long letter, written on
_Daphne_* [Most of the paper used in Tibet is, as I have elsewhere
noticed, made from the bark of various species of _Daphneae,_ and
especially of _Edgeworthia Gardneri,_ and is imported from Nepal and
Bhotan; but the Tibetans, as MM. Huc and Gabet correctly state,
manufacture a paper from the root of a small shrub: this I have seen,
and it is of a much thicker texture and more durable than Daphne
paper. Dr. Thomson informs me that a species of _Astragalus_ is used
in western Tibet for this purpose, the whole shrub, which is dwarf,
being reduced to pulp.] paper, whose ends were tied with floss silk,
with a large red seal; this he pompously delivered, with whispered
orders, to an attendant, and sent him off. He admired our clothes
extremely,* [All Tibetans admire sad value English broad-cloth beyond
any of our products. Woollen articles are very familiar to them, and
warm clothing is one of the first requisites of life.] and then my
percussion gun, the first he had seen; but above all he admired rum
and water, which he drank with intense relish, leaving a mere sip for
his comrades at the bottom of his little wooden cup, which they
emptied, and afterwards licked clean, and replaced in his breast for
him. We made a large basin full of very weak grog for his party, who
were all friendly and polite; and having made us the unexpected offer
of allowing us to rest ourselves for the day at Yeumtso, he left us,
and practised his men at firing at a mark, but they were very
indifferent shots.

I ascended with Campbell to the lake he had visited on the previous
day, about 600 or 800 feet above Yeumtso, and 17,500 feet above the
sea: it is a mile and a half long, and occupies a large depression
between two rounded spurs, being fed by glaciers from Kinchinjhow.
The rocks of these spurs were all of red quartz and slates, cut into
broad terraces, covered with a thick glacial talus of gneiss and
granite in angular pebbles, and evidently spread over the surface
when the glacier, now occupying the upper end of the lake, extended
over the valley.

The ice on the cliffs and summit of Kinchinjhow was much greener and
clearer than that on the south face (opposite Palung); and rows of
immense icicles hung from the cliffs. A conferva grew in the waters
of the lake, and short, hard tufts of sedge on the banks, but no
other plants were to be seen. Brahminee geese, teal, and widgeon,
were swimming in the waters, and a beetle (_Elaphrus_) was coursing
over the wet banks; finches and other small birds were numerous,
eating the sedge-seeds, and picking up the insects. No view was
obtained to the north, owing to the height of the mountains on the
north flank of the Lachen.

At noon the temperature rose to 52.5 degrees, and the black-bulb to
104.5 degrees; whilst the north-west dusty wind was so dry, that the
dew-point fell to 24.2 degrees.


Ascent of Bhomtso -- View of snowy mountains -- Chumulari -- Arun
river -- Kiang-lah mountains -- Jigatzi -- Lhama -- Dingcham province
of Tibet -- Misapplication of term "Plain of Tibet" -- Sheep, flocks
of -- Crops -- Probable elevation of Jigatzi -- Yarn -- Tsampu river
-- Tame elephants -- Wild horses -- Dryness of air -- Sunset beams --
Rocks of Kinchinjhow -- Cholamoo lakes -- Limestone -- Dip and strike
of rocks -- Effects of great elevation on party -- Ascent of Donkia
-- Moving piles of debris -- Cross Donkia pass -- Second Visit to
Momay Samdong -- Hot springs -- Descent to Yeumtong -- Lachoong --
Retardation of vegetation again noticed -- Jerked meat -- Fish --
Lose a thermometer -- Lepcha lad sleeps in hot spring -- Keadom --
_Bucklandia_ -- Arrive at Choongtam -- Mendicant -- Meepo --
Lachen-Lachoong river -- Wild grape -- View from Singtam of
Kinchinjunga -- Virulent nettle.

In the afternoon we crossed the valley, and ascended Bhomtso, fording
the river, whose temperature was 48 degrees. Some stupendous boulders
of gneiss from Kinchinjhow are deposited in a broad sandy track on
the north bank, by ancient glaciers, which once crossed this valley
from Kinchinjhow.

The ascent was alternately over steep rocky slopes, and broad
shelf-like flats; many more plants grew here than I had expected, in
inconspicuous scattered tufts.* [Besides those before mentioned,
there were Fescue-grass (_Festuca ovina_ of Scotland), a
strong-scented silky wormwood (_Artemisia_), and round tufts of
_Oxytropis chiliophylla,_ a kind of _Astralagus_ that inhabits
eastern and western Tibet; this alone was green: it formed great
circles on the ground, the centre decaying, and the annual shoots
growing outwards, and thus constantly enlarging the circle. A woolly
_Leontopodium, Androsace,_ and some other plants assumed nearly the
same mode of growth. The rest of the vegetation consisted of a
_Sedum, Nardostachys Jatamansi, Meconopsis horridula,_ a slender
_Androsace, Gnaphalium, Stipa, Salvia, Draba, Pedicularis,
Potentilla_ or _Sibbaldia, Gentiana_ and _Erigeron alpinus_ of
Scotland. All these grow nearly up to 18,000 feet.] The rocks were
nearly vertical strata of quartz, hornstone, and conglomerate,
striking north-west, and dipping south-west 80 degrees. The broad top
of the hill was also of quartz, but covered with angular pebbles of
the rocks transported from Kinchinjhow. Some clay-stone fragments
were stained red with oxide of iron, and covered with _Parmelia
miniata_;* [This minute lichen, mentioned at chapter xxxii, is the
most Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine in the world; often occurring so
abundantly as to colour the rocks of an orange red. This was the case
at Bhomtso, and is so also in Cockburn Island in the Antarctic ocean,
which it covers so profusely that the rocks look as if brightly
painted. See "Ross's Voyage," vol. ii. p. 339.] this, with _Borrera,_
another lichen, which forms stringy masses blown along by the wind,
were the only plants, and they are among the most alpine in
the world.

Bhomtso is 18,590 feet above the sea by barometer, and 18,305 by
boiling-point: it presented an infinitely more extensive prospect
than I had ventured to anticipate, commanding all the most important
Sikkim, North Bhotan, and Tibetan mountains, including Kinchinjunga
thirty-seven miles to the south-west, and Chumulari thirty-nine miles
south-east. Due south, across the sandy valley of the Lachen,
Kinchinjhow reared its long wall of glaciers and rugged precipices,
22,000 feet high, and under its cliffs lay the lake to which we had
walked in the morning: beyond Kongra Lama were the Thlonok mountains,
where I had spent the month of June, with Kinchinjunga in the
distance. Westward Chomiomo rose abruptly from the rounded hills we
were on, to 22,000 feet elevation, ten miles distant. To the east of
Kinchinjhow were the Cholamoo lakes, with the rugged mass of Donkia
stretching in cliffs of ice and snow continuously southwards to
forked Donkia, which overhung Momay Samdong.

A long sloping spur sweeps from the north of Donkia first north, and
then west to Bhomtso, rising to a height of more than 20,000 feet
without snow. Over this spur the celebrated Chumulari* [Some doubt
still hangs over the identity of this mountain, chiefly owing to
Turner's having neglected to observe his geographical positions.
I saw a much loftier mountain than this, bearing from Bhomtso north
87 degrees out, and it was called Chumulari by the Tibetan Sepoys;
but it does not answer to Turner's description of an isolated snowy
peak, such as he approached within three miles; and though in the
latitude he assigned to it, is fully sixty miles to the east of his
route. A peak, similar to the one he degcribes, is seen from Tonglo
and Sinchul (see vol. i., chapters v and viii); this is the one
alluded to above, and it is identified by both Tibetans and Lepchas
at Dorjiling as the true Chumulari, and was measured by Colonel
Waugh, who placed it in lat. 27 degrees 49 minutes north, long. 89
degrees 18 minutes east. The latter position, though fifteen miles
south of what Turner gives it, is probably correct; as Pemberton
found that Turner had put other places in Bhotan twenty miles too far
north. Moreover, in saying that it is visible from Purnea in the
plains of Bengal, Turner refers to Kinchinjunga, whose elevation was
then unknown. Dr. Campbell ("Bengal As. Soc. Jour.," 1848), describes
Chumulari from oral information, as an isolated mountain encircled by
twenty-one goompas, and perambulated by pilgrims in five days; the
Lachoong Phipun, on the other hand, who was a Lama, and well
acquainted with the country, affirmed that Chumulari has many tops,
and cannot be perambulated; but that detached peaks near it may be,
and that it is to a temple near one of these that pilgrims resort.
Again, the natives use these names very vaguely, and as that of
Kinchinjunga is often applied equally to all or any part of the group
of snows between the Lachen and Tambur rivers, so may the term
Chumulari have been used vaguely to Captain Turner or to me. I have
been told that an isolated, snow-topped, venerated mountain rises
about twenty miles south of the true Chumulari, and is called
"Sakya-khang" (Sakya's snowy mountain), which may be that seen from
Dorjiling; but I incline to consider Campbell's and Waugh's mountain
as the one alluded to by Turner, and it is to it that I here refer as
bearing north 115 degrees 30 minutes east from Bhomtso.] peeps,
bearing south-east, and from its isolated position and sharpness
looking low and small; it appeared quite near, though thirty-nine
miles distant.

North-east of Chumulari, and far beyond it, are several meridional
ranges of very much loftier snowy mountains, which terminated the
view of the snowy Himalaya; the distance embraced being fully 150
miles, and perhaps much more. Of one of these eastern masses* [] I
afterwards took

	These are probably the Ghassa mountains of Turners narrative:
bearings which I took of one of the loftiest of them, from the Khasia
mountains, together with those from Bhomtso, would appear to place it
in latitude 28 degrees 10 minutes and longitude 90 degrees, and 200
miles from the former station, and 90 degrees east of the latter.
Its elevation from Bhomtso angles is 24,160 feet. I presume I also
saw Chumulari from the Khasia; the most western peak seen thence
being in the direction of that mountain. Captain R. Strachey has most
kindly paid close attention to these bearings and distances, and
recalculated the distances and heights: no confidence is, however, to
be placed in the results of such minute angles, taken from immense
distances. Owing in part no doubt to extraordinary refraction, the
angles of the Ghassa mountain taken from the Khasia give it an
elevation of 26,500 feet! which is very much over the truth; and make
that of Chumulari still higher: the distance from my position in the
Khasia being 210 miles from Chumulari! which is probably the utmost
limit at which the human eye has ever discerned a terrestrial
object.] I afterwards took bearings and angular heights from the
Khasia mountains, in Bengal, upwards of 200 miles south-east of
its position.

Turning to the northward, a singular contrast in the view was
presented: the broad sandy valley of the Arun lay a few miles off,
and perhaps 1,500 feet below me; low brown and red ridges, 18,000 to
19,000 feet high, of stony sloping mountains with rocky tops, divided
its feeders, which appeared to be dry, and to occupy flat sandy
valleys. For thirty miles north no mountain was above the level of
the theodolite, and not a particle of snow was to be seen beyond
that, rugged purple-flanked and snowy-topped mountains girdled
the horizon, appearing no nearer than they did from the Donkia pass,
and their angular heights and bearings being almost the same as from
that point of view. The nearer of these are said to form the
Kiang-lah chain, the furthest I was told by different authorities are
in the salt districts north of Jigatzi.

To the north-east was the lofty region traversed by Turner on his
route by the Ramchoo lakes to Teshoo Loombo; its elevation may be
17,000 feet* [It is somewhat remarkable that Turner nowhere alludes
to difficulty of breathing, and in one place only to head-ache
(p. 209) when at these great elevations. This is in a great measure
accounted for by his having been constantly mounted. I never suffered
either in my breathing, head, or stomach when riding, even when at
18,300 feet.] above the sea. Beyond it a gorge led through rugged
mountains, by which I was told the Painom river flows north-west to
the Yaru; and at an immense distance to the north-east were the
Khamba mountains, a long blue range, which it is said divides the
Lhassan or "U" from the "Tsang" (or Jigatzi) province of Tibet; it
appeared fully 100 miles off, and was probably much more; it bore
from N. 57 degrees E. to N. 70 degrees E., and though so lofty as to
be heavily snowed throughout, was much below the horizon-line of
Bhomtso; it is crossed on the route from Jigatzi, and from Sikkim to
Lhassa,* [Lhassa, which lies north-east, may be reached in ten days
from this, with relays of ponies; many mountains are crossed, where
the breath is affected, and few villages are passed after leaving
Giantchi, the "Jhansi jeung" of Turner's narrative. See Campbell's
"Routes from Dorjiling to Lhassa." ("Bengal As. Soc. Journal.")] and
is considered very lofty, from affecting the breathing. About twenty
miles to the north-east are some curious red conical mountains, said
to be on the west side of the Ramchoo lakes; they were unsnowed, and
bore N. 45 degrees 30 minutes E. and N. 60 degrees 30 minutes E.
A sparingly-snowed group bore N. 26 degrees 30 minutes E., and
another N. 79 degrees E., the latter being probably that mentioned by
Turner as seen by him from near Giantchi.

But the mountains which appeared both the highest and the most
distant on the northern landscape, were those I described when at
Donkia, as being north of Nepal and beyond the Arun river, and the
culminant peak of which bore N. 55 degrees. Both Dr. Campbell and I
made repeated estimates of its height and distance by the eye;
comparing its size and snow-level with those of the mountains near
us; and assuming 4000 to 5000 feet as the minimum height of its snowy
cap; this would give it an elevation of 23,000 to 25,000 feet.
An excellent telescope brought out no features on its flanks not
visible to the naked eye, and by the most careful levellings with the
theodolite, it was depressed more than 0 degrees 7 minutes below the
horizon of Bhomtso, whence the distance must be above 100 miles.

The transparency of the pale-blue atmosphere of these lofty regions
can hardly be described, nor the clearness and precision with which
the most distant objects are projected against the sky. From having
afterwards measured peaks 200 and 210 miles distant from the Khasia
mountains, I feel sure that I underrated the estimates made at
Bhomtso, and I have no hesitation in saying, that the mean elevation
of the sparingly-snowed* [Were the snow-level in Dingcham, as low as
it is in Sikkim, the whole of Tibet from Donkia almost to the
Yaru-Tsampu river would be everywhere intersected by glaciers and
other impassable barriers of snow and ice, for a breadth of fifty
miles, and the country would have no parallel for amount of snow
beyond the Polar circles. It is impossible to conjecture what would
have been the effects on the climate of northern India and central
Asia under these conditions. When, however, we reflect upon the
evidences of glacial phenomena that abound in all the Himalayan
valleys at and above 9000 feet elevation, it is difficult to avoid
the conclusion that such a state of things once existed, and that at
a comparatively very recent period.] watershed between the Yaru and
the Arun will be found to be greater than that of the snowy Himalaya
south of it, and to follow the chain running from Donkia, north of
the Arun, along the Kiang-lah mountains, towards the Nepal frontier,
at Tingri Maidan. No part of that watershed perhaps rises so high as
24,000 feet, but its lowest elevation is probably nowhere under
18,000 feet.

This broad belt of lofty country, north of the snowy Himalaya, is the
Dingcham province of Tibet, and runs along the frontier of Sikkim,
Bhotan, and Nepal. It gives rise to all the Himalayan rivers, and its
mean elevation is probably 15,000 to 15,500 feet: its general
appearance, as seen from greater heights, is that of a much less
mountainous country than the snowy and wet Himalayan regions; this is
because its mean elevation is so enormous, that ranges of 20,000 to
22,000 feet appear low and insignificant upon it. The absence of
forest and other obstructions to the view, the breadth and flatness
of the valleys, and the undulating character of the lower ranges that
traverse its surface, give it a comparatively level appearance, and
suggest the term "maidan" or "plains" to the Tibetan, when comparing
his country with the complicated ridges of the deep Sikkim valleys.
Here one may travel for many miles without rising or falling 3000
feet, yet never descending below 14,000 feet, partly because the flat
winding valleys are followed in preference to exhausting ascents, and
partly because the passes are seldom more than that elevation above
the valleys; whereas, in Sikkim, rises and descents of 6000, and even
9000 feet, are common in passing from valley to valley, sometimes in
one day's march.

The swarthy races of Dingcham have been elsewhere described; they are
an honest, hospitable, and very hardy people, differing from the
northern Tibetans chiefly in colour, and in invariably wearing the
pigtail, which MM. Huc and Gabet assure us is not usual in Lhassa.*
[Amongst Lhassan customs alluded to by these travellers, is that of
the women smearing their faces with a black pigment, the object of
which they affirm to be that they may render themselves odious to the
male sex, and thus avoid temptation. The custom is common enough, but
the real object is to preserve the skin, which the dry cold wind
peels from the face. The pigment is mutton-fat, blackened, according
to Tchebu Lama, with catechu and other ingredients; but I believe
more frequently by the dirt of the face itself. I fear I do not
slander the Tibetan damsels in saying that personal cleanliness and
chastity are both lightly esteemed amongst them; and as the Lama
naively remarked, when questioned on the subject, "the Tibetan women
are not so different from those of other countries as to wish to
conceal what charms they possess."] They are a pastoral race, and
Campbell saw a flock of 400 hornless sheep, grazing on short sedges
(_Carex_) and fescue-grass, in the middle of October, at 18,000 feet
above the sea. An enormous ram attended the flock, whose long hair
hung down to the ground; its back was painted red.

There is neither tree nor shrub in this country; and a very little
wheat (which seldom ripens), barley, turnips, and radishes are, I
believe, the only crops, except occasionally peas. Other legumes,
cabbages, etc., are cultivated in the sheltered valleys of the Yaru
feeders, where great heat is reflected from the rocks; and there also
stunted trees grow, as willows, walnuts, poplars, and perhaps ashes;
all of which, however, are said to be planted and scarce. Even at
Teshoo Loombo and Jigatzi* [Digarchi, Jigatzi, or Shigatzi jong (the
fort of Shigatzi) is the capital of the "Tsang" province, and Teshoo
Loombo is the neighbouring city of temples and monasteries, the
ecclesiastical capital of Tibet, and the abode of the grand (Teshoo)
Lama, or ever-living Boodh. Whether we estimate this man by the
number of his devotees, or the perfect sincerity of their worship, he
is without exception one of the most honoured beings living in the
world. I have assumed the elevation of Jigatzi to be 13-14,000 feet,
using as data Turner's October mean temperature of Teshoo Loombo, and
the decrement for elevation of 400 feet to 1 degree Fahr.; which my
own observations indicate as an approximation to the truth. Humboldt
("Asie Centrale," iii., p. 223) uses a much smaller multiplier, and
infers the elevation of Teshoo Loombo to be between 9,500 and 10,000
feet. Our data are far too imperfect to warrant any satisfactory
conclusions on this interesting subject; but the accounts I have
received of the vegetation of the Yaru valley at Jigatzi seem to
indicate an elevation of at least 13,000 feet for the bed of that
river. Of the elevation of Lhassa itself we have no idea: if MM. Huc
and Gabet's statement of the rivers not being frozen there in March
be correct, the climate must be very different from what we suppose.]
buckwheat is a rare crop, and only a prostrate very hardy kind is
grown. Clay teapots and pipkins are the most valuable exports to
Sikkim from the latter city, after salt and soda. Jewels and woollen
cloaks are also exported, the latter especially from Giantchi, which
is famous for its woollen fabrics and mart of ponies.

Of the Yaru river at Jigatzi, which all affirm becomes the
Burrampooter in Assam, I have little information to add to Turner's
description: it is sixty miles north of Bhomtso, and I assume its
elevation to be 13-14,000 feet;* [The Yaru, which approaches the
Nepal frontier west of Tingri, and beyond the great mountain
described at vol. i. chapter xi, makes a sweep to the northward, and
turns south to Jigatzi, whence it makes another and greater bend to
the north, and again turning south flows west of Lhassa, receiving
the Kechoo river from that holy city. From Jigatzi it is said to be
navigable to near Lhassa by skin and plank-built boats. Thence it
flows south-east to the Assam frontier, and while still in Tibet, is
said to enter a warm climate, where tea, silk, cotton, and rice, are
grown. Of its course after entering the Assam Himalaya little is
known, and in answer to my enquiries why it had not been followed, I
was always told that the country through which it flowed was
inhabited by tribes of savages, who live on snakes and vermin, and
are fierce and warlike. These are no doubt the Singpho, Bor and
Bor-abor tribes who inhabit the mountains of upper Assam.
A travelling mendicant was once sent to follow up the Dihong to the
Burrampooter, under the joint auspices of Mr. Hodgson and Major
Jenkins, the Commissioner of Assam; but the poor fellow was speared
on the frontier by these savages. The concurrent testimony of the
Assamese, that the Dihong is the Yaru, on its southern course to
become the Burrampooter, renders this point as conclusively settled
as any, resting on mere oral evidence, is likely to be.] it takes an
immense bend to the northward after passing Jigatzi, and again turns
south, flowing to the west of Lhassa, and at some distance from that
capital. Lhassa, as all agree, is at a much lower elevation than
Jigatzi; and apricots (whose ripe stones Dr. Campbell procured for
me) and walnuts are said to ripen there, and the Dama or Himalayan
furze (_Caragana_), is said to grow there. The Bactrian camel also
thrives and breeds at Lhassa, together with a small variety of cow
(not the yak), both signs of a much more temperate climate than
Jigatzi enjoys. It is, however, a remarkable fact that there are two
tame elephants near the latter city, kept by the Teshoo Lama.
They were taken to Jigatzi, through Bhotan, by Phari; and I have been
informed that they have become clothed with long hair, owing to the
cold of the climate; but Tchebu Lama contradicted this, adding, that
his countrymen were so credulous, that they would believe blankets
grew on the elephants' backs, if the Lamas told them so.

No village or house is seen throughout the extensive area over which
the eye roams from Bhomtso, and the general character of the desolate
landscape was similar to that which I have described as seen from
Donkia Pass (chapter xxii). The wild ass* [This, the _Equus Hemionus_
of Pallas, the untameable Kiang of Tibet, abounds in Dingcham, and we
saw several. It resembles the ass more than the horse, from its size,
heavy head, small limbs, thin tail, and the stripe over the shoulder.
The flesh is eaten and much liked. The Kiang-lah mountains are so
named from their being a great resort of this creature. It differs
widely from the wild ass of Persia, Sind, and Beloochistan, but is
undoubtedly the same as the Siberian animal.] grazing with its foal
on the sloping downs, the hare bounding over the stony soil, the
antelope scouring the sandy flats, and the fox stealing along to his
burrow, are all desert and Tartarian types of the animal creation.
The shrill whistle of the marmot alone breaks the silence of the
scene, recalling the snows of Lapland to the mind; the kite and raven
wheel through the air, 1000 feet over head, with as strong and steady
a pinion as if that atmosphere possessed the same power of resistance
that it does at the level of the sea. Still higher in the heavens,
long black V-shaped trains of wild geese cleave the air, shooting
over the glacier-crowned top of Kinchinjhow, and winging their flight
in one day, perhaps, from the Yaru to the Ganges, over 500 miles of
space, and through 22,000 feet of elevation. One plant alone, the
yellow lichen (_Borrera_), is found at this height, and only as a
visitor; for, Tartar-like, it emigrates over these lofty slopes and
ridges, blown about by the violent winds. I found a small beetle on
the very top,* [I observed a small red _Acarus_ (mite) at this
elevation, both on Donkia and Kinchinjhow, which reminds me that I
found a species of the same genus at Cockburn Island (in latitude 64
degrees south, longitude 64 degrees 49 minutes west). This genus
hence inhabits a higher southern latitude than any other land animal
attains.] probably blown up also, for it was a flower-feeder, and
seemed benumbed with cold.

Every night that we spent in Tibet, we enjoyed a magnificent display
of sunbeams converging to the east, and making a false sunset.
I detailed this phenomenon when seen from the Kymore mountains, and I
repeatedly saw it again in the Khasia, but never in the Sikkim
Himalaya, whence I assume that it is most frequent in mountain
plateaus. As the sun set, broad purple beams rose from a dark, low,
leaden bank on the eastern horizon, and spreading up to the zenith,
covered the intervening space: they lasted through the twilight, from
fifteen to twenty minutes, fading gradually into the blackness of
night. I looked in vain for the beautiful lancet beam of the zodiacal
light; its position was obscured by Chomiomo.

On the 18th of October we had another brilliant morning, after a cold
night, the temperature having fallen to 4 degrees. I took the
altitude of Yeumtso by carefully boiling two thermometers, and the
result was 16,279 feet, the barometrical observations giving 16,808
feet. I removed a thermometer sunk three feet in the gravelly soil,
which showed a temperature of 43 degrees,* [It had risen to 43.5
degrees during the previous day.] which is 12.7 degrees above the
mean temperature of the two days we camped here.

Our fires were made of dry yak droppings which soon burn out with a
fierce flame, and much black smoke; they give a disagreeable taste to
whatever is cooked with them.

Having sent the coolies forward to Cholamoo lake, we re-ascended
Bhomtso to verify my observations. As on the previous occasion a
violent dry north-west wind blew, peeling the skin from our faces,
loading the air with grains of sand, and rendering theodolite
observations very uncertain; besides injuring all my instruments, and
exposing them to great risk of breakage.

The Tibetan Sepoys did not at all understand our ascending Bhomtso a
second time; they ran after Campbell, who was ahead on a stout pony,
girding up their long garments, bracing their matchlocks tight over
their shoulders, and gasping for breath at every step, the long horns
of their muskets bobbing up and down as they toiled amongst the
rocks. When I reached the top I found Campbell seated behind a little
stone wall which he had raised to keep off the violent wind, and the
uncouth warriors in a circle round him, puzzled beyond measure at his
admiration of the view. My instruments perplexed them extremely, and
in crowding round me, they broke my azimuth compass. They left us to
ourselves when the fire I made to boil the thermometers went out, the
wind being intensely cold. I had given my barometer to one of
Campbell's men to carry, who not coming up, the latter kindly went to
search for him, and found him on the ground quite knocked up and
stupified by the cold, and there, if left alone, he would have lain
till overtaken by death.

The barometer on the summit of Bhomtso stood at 15.548 inches;* [The
elevation of Bhomtso, worked by Bessel's tables, and using corrected
observations of the Calcutta barometer for the lower station, is
18,590 feet. The corresponding dew-point 4.4 degrees (49.6 degrees
below that of the air at the time of observation). By Oltmann's
tables the elevation is 18,540 feet. The elevation by boiling water
is 18,305.] the temperature between 11.30 a.m. and 2.30 p.m.
fluctuated between 44 degrees and 56 degrees: this was very high for
so great an elevation, and no doubt due to the power of the sun on
the sterile soil, and consequent radiated heat. The tension of vapour
was .0763, and the dew-point was 5.8 degrees, or 43.5 degrees below
the temperature of the air. Such extraordinary dryness* [The weight
of vapour in a cubic foot of air was no more than .087 of a grain,
and the saturation-point .208.] and consequent evaporation, increased
by the violent wind, sufficiently accounts for the height of the snow
line; in further evidence of which, I may add that a piece of ice or
snow laid on the ground here, does not melt, but disappears
by evaporation.

The difference between the dry cold air of this elevation and that of
the heated plains of India, is very great. During the driest winds of
the Terai, in spring, the temperature is 80 degrees to 90 degrees,
the tension of vapour is .400 to .500, with a dew-point 22 degrees
below the temperature, and upwards of six grains of vapour are
suspended in the cubic foot of air; a thick haze obscures the
heavens, and clouds of dust rise high in the air; here on the other
hand (probably owing to the rarity of the atmosphere and the low
tension of its vapours), the drought is accompanied by perfect
transparency, and the atmosphere is too attenuated to support the
dust raised by the wind.

We descended in the afternoon, and on our way up the Lachen valley
examined a narrow gulley in a lofty red spur from Kinchinjhow, where
black shales were _in situ,_ striking north-east, and dipping
north-west 45 degrees. These shales were interposed between beds of
yellow quartz conglomerate, upon the latter of which rested a talus
of earthy rocks, angular fragments of which were strewed about
opposite this spur, but were not seen elsewhere.

It became dark before we reached the Cholamoo lake, where we lost our
way amongst glaciers, moraines, and marshes. We expected to have seen
the lights of the camp, but were disappointed, and as it was freezing
hard, we began to be anxious, and shouted till the echos of our
voices against the opposite bank were heard by Tchebu Lama, who met
us in great alarm for our safety. Our camp was pitched some way from
the shore, on a broad plain, 16,900 feet above the sea.* [This, which
is about the level of the lake, gives the Lachen river a fall of
about 1500 feet between its source and Kongra Lama, or sixty feet per
mile following its windings. From Kongra Lama to Tallum it is 140
feet per mile; from Tallum to Singtam 160 feet; and from Singtam to
the plains of India 50 feet per mile. The total fall from Cholamoo
lake to its exit on the plains of India is eighty-five feet per mile.
Its length, following its windings, is 195 miles, upwards of double
the direct distance.] A cold wind descended from Donkia; yet, though
more elevated than Yeumtso, the climate of Cholamoo, from being
damper and misty, was milder. The minimum thermometer fell to
14 degrees.

Before starting for Donkia pass on the following morning, we visited
some black rocks which rose from the flat to the east of the lake.
They proved to be of fossiliferous limestone, the strata of which
were much disturbed: the strike appeared in one part north-west, and
the dip north-east 45 degrees: a large fault passed east by north
through the cliff, and it was further cleft by joints running
northwards. The cliff was not 100 yards long, and was about 70 thick;
its surface was shivered by frost into cubical masses, and glacial
boulders of gneiss lay on the top. The limestone rock was chiefly a
blue pisolite conglomerate, with veins and crystals of white
carbonate of lime, seams of shale, and iron pyrites. A part was
compact and blue, very crystalline, and full of encrinitic fossils,
and probably nummulites, but all were too much altered for

This, from its mineral characters, appears to be the same limestone
formation which occurs throughout the Himalaya and Western Tibet; but
the fossils I collected are in too imperfect a state to warrant any
conclusions on this subject. Its occurrence immediately to the
northward of the snowy mountains, and in such very small quantities,
are very remarkable facts. The neighbouring rocks of Donkia were
gneiss with granite veins, also striking north-west and dipping
north-east 10 degrees, as if they overlay the limestone, but here as
in all similar situations there was great confusion of the strata,
and variation in direction and strike.

And here I may once for all confess that though I believe the general
strike of the rocks on this frontier to be north-west, and the dip
north-east, I am unable to affirm it positively; for though I took
every opportunity of studying the subject, and devoted many hours to
the careful measuring and recording of dips and strikes, on both
faces of Kinchinjhow, Donkia, Bhomtso, and Kongra Lama, I am unable
to reduce these to any intelligible system.* [North-west is the
prevalent strike in Kumaon, the north-west Himalaya generally, and
throughout Western Tibet, Kashmir, etc., according to Dr. Thomson.]

The coolies of Dr. Campbell's party were completely knocked up by the
rarified air; they had taken a whole day to march here from Yeumtso,
scarcely six miles, and could eat no food at night. A Lama of our
party offered up prayers* [All diseases are attributed by the
Tibetans to the four elements, who are propitiated accordingly in
cases of severe illness. The winds are invoked in cases of affections
of the breathing; fire in fevers and inflammations; water in dropsy,
and diseases whereby the fluids are affected; and the God of earth
when solid organs are diseased, as in liver-complaints, rheumatism,
etc. Propitiatory offerings are made to the deities of these
elements, but never sacrifices.] to Kinchinjhow for the recovery of a
stout Lepcha lad (called Nurko), who showed no signs of animation,
and had all the symptoms of serous apoplexy. The Lama perched a
saddle on a stone, and burning incense before it, scattered rice to
the winds, invoking Kinchin, Donkia, and all the neighbouring peaks.
A strong dose of calomel and jalap, which we poured down the sick
lad's throat, contributed materially to the success of these

The Tibetan Sepoys were getting tired of our delays, which so much
favoured my operations; but though showing signs of impatience and
sulkiness, they behaved well to the last; taking the sick man to the
top of the pass on their yaks, and assisting all the party: nothing,
however, would induce them to cross into Sikkim, which they
considered as "Company's territory."

Before proceeding to the pass, I turned off to the east, and
re-ascended Donkia to upwards of 19,000 feet, vainly hoping to get a
more distant view, and other bearings of the Tibetan mountains.
The ascent was over enormous piles of loose rocks split by the frost,
and was extremely fatiguing. I reached a peak overhanging a steep
precipice, at whose base were small lakes and glaciers, from which
flowed several sources of the Lachen, afterwards swelled by the great
affluent from Cholamoo lake. A few rocks striking north-east and
dipping north-west, projected at the very summit, with frozen snow
amongst them, beyond which the ice and precipices rendered it
impossible to proceed: but though exposed to the north, there was no
perpetual snow in the ordinary acceptation of the term, and an arctic
European lichen (_Lecidea oreina_) grew on the top, so faintly
discolouring the rocks as hardly to be detected without a

I descended obliquely, down a very steep slope of 35 degrees, over
upwards of a thousand feet of debris, the blocks on which were so
loosely poised on one another, that it was necessary to proceed with
the utmost circumspection, for I was alone, and a false step would
almost certainly have been followed by breaking a leg. The alternate
freezing and thawing of rain amongst these masses, must produce a
constant downward motion in the whole pile of debris (which was
upwards of 2000 feet high), and may account for the otherwise
unexplained phenomenon of continuous shoots of angular rocks reposing
on very gentle slopes in other places.* [May not the origin of the
streams of quartz blocks that fill gently sloping broad valleys
several miles long, in the Falkland Islands, be thus explained? (See
"Darwin's Journal," in Murray's Home and Col. Lib.) The extraordinary
shifting in the position of my thermometer left among the rocks of
the Donkia pass (see chapter xxii), and the mobile state of the
slopes I descended on this occasion, first suggested this explanation
to me. When in the Falkland Islands I was wholly unable to offer any
explanation of the phenomenon there, to which my attention had been
drawn by Mr. Darwin's narrative.]

The north ascent to the Donkia pass is by a path well selected
amongst immense angular masses of rock, and over vast piles of
debris: the strike on this, the north face, was again north-east, and
dip north-west: I arrived at the top at 3 p.m., throughly fatigued,
and found my faithful Lepcha lads (Cheytoong and Bassebo) nestling
under a rock with my theodolite and barometers, having been awaiting
my arrival in the biting wind for three hours. My pony stood there
too, the picture of patience, and laden with minerals.
After repeating my observations, I proceeded to Momay Samdong, where
I arrived after dusk. I left a small bottle of brandy and some
biscuits with the lads, and it was well I did so, for the pony
knocked up before reaching Momay, and rather than leave my bags of
stones, they passed the night by the warm flank of the beast, under a
rock at 18,000 feet elevation, without other food, fire, or shelter.

I found my companion encamped at Momay, on the spot I had occupied in
September; he had had the utmost difficulty in getting his coolies
on, as they threw down their light loads in despair, and lying with
their faces to the ground, had to be roused from a lethargy that
would soon have been followed by death.

We rested for a day at Momay, and on the 20th, attempted to ascend to
the Donkia glacier, but were driven back by a heavy snow-storm.
The scenery on arriving here, presented a wide difference to that we
had left; snow lying at 16,500 feet, whereas immediately to the north
of the same mountain there was none at 19,000 feet. Before leaving
Momay; I sealed two small glass flasks containing the air of this
elevation, by closing with a spirit lamp a very fine capillary tube,
which formed the opening to each; avoiding the possibility of heating
the contents by the hand or otherwise. The result of its analysis by
Mr. Muller (who sent me the prepared flasks), was that it contained
36.538 per cent. in volume of oxygen; whereas his repeated analysis
of the air of Calcutta gives 21 per cent. Such a result is too
anomalous to be considered satisfactory.

I again visited the Kinchinjhow glacier and hot springs; the water
had exactly the same temperature as in the previous month, though the
mean temperature of the air was 8 degrees or 9 degrees lower.
The minimum thermometer fell to 22 degrees, being 10 degrees lower
than it ever fell in September.

We descended to Yeumtong in a cold drizzle, arriving by sunset; we
remained through the following day, hoping to explore the lower
glacier on the opposite side of the valley: which, however, the
weather entirely prevented. I have before mentioned (chapter xxiii)
that in descending in autumn from the drier and more sunny rearward
Sikkim valleys, the vegetation is found to be most backward in the
lowest and dampest regions. On this occasion, I found asters,
grasses, polygonums, and other plants that were withered, brown, and
seeding at Momay (14,000 to 15,000 feet), at Yeumtong (12,000 feet)
green and unripe; and 2000 feet lower still, at Lachoong, the
contrast was even more marked. Thus the short backward spring and
summer of the Arctic zone is overtaken by an early and forward
seed-time and winter: so far as regards the effects of mean
temperature, the warmer station is in autumn more backward than the
colder. This is everywhere obvious in the prevalent plants of each,
and is especially recognisable in the rhododendrons; as the following
table shows:--
16,000 to 17,000 feet, _R. nivale_ flowers in July; fruits in
September=2 months.
13,000 to 14,000 feet, _R. anthopogon_ flowers in June; fruits in
Oct.=4 months.
11,000 to 12,000 feet, _R. campanulatum_ flowers in May; fruits in
Nov.=8 months.
8,000 to 9,000 feet, _R. argenteum_ flowers in April; fruits in
Dec.=8 months.

And so it is with many species of _Compositae_ and _Umbelliferae,_
and indeed of all natural orders, some of which I have on the same
day gathered in ripe fruit at 13,000 to 14,000 feet, and found still
in flower at 9000 to 10,000 feet. The brighter skies and more
powerful and frequent solar radiation at the greater elevations,
account for this apparent inversion of the order of nature.* [The
distribution of the seasons at different elevations in the Himalaya
gives rise to some anomalies that have puzzled naturalists. From the
middle of October to that of May, vegetation is torpid above 14,000
feet, and indeed almost uniformly covered with snow. From November
till the middle of April, vegetation is also torpid above 10,000
feet, except that a few trees and bushes do not ripen all their seeds
till December. The three winter months (December, January, and
February) are all but dead above 6000 feet, the earliest appearance
of spring at Dorjiling (7000 feet) being at the sudden accession of
heat in March. From May till August the vegetation at each elevation
is (in ascending order) a month behind that below it; 4000 feet being
about equal to a month of summer weather in one sense. I mean by
this, that the genera and natural orders (and sometimes the species)
which flower at 8000 feet in May, are not so forward at 12,000 feet
till June, nor at 16,000 feet till July. After August, however, the
reverse holds good; then the vegetation is as forward at 16,000 feet
as at 8000 feet. By the end of September most of the natural orders
and genera have ripened their fruit in the upper zone, though they
have flowered as late as July; whereas October is the fruiting month
at 12,000, and November below 10,000 feet. Dr. Thomson does not
consider that the more sunny climate of the loftier elevations
sufficiently accounts for this, and adds the stimulus of cold, which
must act by checking the vegetative organs and hastening maturation.]

I was disappointed at finding the rhododendron seeds still immature
at Yeumtong, for I was doubtful whether the same kinds might be met
with at the Chola pass, which I had yet to visit; besides which,
their tardy maturation threatened to delay me for an indefinite
period in the country. _Viburnum_ and _Lonicera,_ however, were ripe
and abundant; the fruits of both are considered poisonous in Europe,
but here the black berries of a species of the former (called
"Nalum") are eatable and agreeable; as are those of a _Gualtheria,_
which are pale blue, and called "Kalumbo." Except these, and the
cherry mentioned above, there are no other autumnal fruits above
10,000 feet: brambles, strange as it may appear, do not ascend beyond
that elevation in the Sikkim Himalaya, though so abundant below it,
both in species and individuals, and though so typical of
northern Europe.

At Lachoong we found all the yaks that had been grazing till the end
of September at the higher elevations, and the Phipun presented our
men with one of a gigantic size, and proportionally old and tough.
The Lepchas barbarously slaughtered it with arrows, and feasted on
the flesh and entrails, singed and fried the skin, and made soup of
the bones, leaving nothing but the horns and hoofs. Having a fine
day, they prepared some as jerked meat, cutting it into thin strips,
which they dried on the rocks. This (called "Schat-chew," dried meat)
is a very common and favourite food in Tibet, I found it palatable;
but on the other hand, the dried saddles of mutton, of which they
boast so much, taste so strongly of tallow, that I found it
impossible to swallow a morsel of them.* [Raw dried split fish are
abundantly cured (without salt) in Tibet; they are caught in the Yaru
and great lakes of Ramchoo, Dobtah, and Yarbru, and are chiefly carp,
and allied fish, which attain a large size. It is one of the most
remarkable facts in the zoology of Asia, that no trout or salmon
inhabits any of the rivers that debouche into the Indian Ocean (the
so-called Himalayan trout is a species of carp). This widely
distributed natural order of fish (_Salmonidae_) is however, found in
the Oxus, and in all the rivers of central Asia that flow north and
west, and the _Salmo orientalis,_ M'Clelland ("Calcutta Journ. Nat.
Hist." iii., p. 283), was caught by Mr. Griffith (Journals, p. 404)
in the Bamean river (north of the Hindo Koosh) which flows into the
Oxus, and whose waters are separated by one narrow mountain ridge
from those of the feeders of the Indus. The central Himalayan rivers
often rise in Tibet from lakes full of fish, but have none (at least
during the rains) in that rapid part of their course from 10,000 to
14,000 feet elevation: below that fish abound, but I believe
invariably of different species from those found at the sources of
the same rivers. The nature of the tropical ocean into which all the
Himalayan rivers debouche, is no doubt the proximate cause of the
absence of _Salmonidae._ Sir John Richardson (Fishes of China Seas,
etc., "in Brit. Ass. Rep. etc."), says that no species of the order
has been found in the Chinese or eastern Asiatic seas.]

We staid two days at Lachoong, two of my lads being again laid up
with fever; one of them had been similarly attacked at the same place
nearly two months before: the other lad had been repeatedly ill since
June, and at all elevations. Both cases were returns of a fever
caught in the low unhealthy valleys some months previously, and
excited by exposure and hardship.

The vegetation at Lachoong was still beautiful, and the weather mild,
though snow had descended to 14,000 feet on Tunkra. _Compositae_ were
abundantly in flower, apples in young fruit, bushes of _Cotoneaster_
covered with scarlet berries, and the brushwood silvery with the
feathery heads of _Clematis._

I here found that I had lost a thermometer for high temperatures,
owing to a hole in the bag in which Cheytoong carried those of my
instruments which were in constant use. It had been last used at the
hot springs of the Kinchinjhow glacier; and the poor lad was so
concerned at his mishap, that he came to me soon afterwards, with his
blanket on his back, and a few handfuls of rice in a bag, to make his
salaam before setting out to search for it. There was not now a
single inhabitant between Lachoong and that dreary spot, and strongly
against my wish he started, without a companion. Three days
afterwards he overtook us at Keadom, radiant with joy at having found
the instrument: he had gone up to the hot springs, and vainly sought
around them that evening; then rather than lose the chance of a
day-light search on his way back, he had spent the cold October night
in the hot water, without fire or shelter, at 16,000 feet above the
sea. Next morning his search was again fruitless; and he was
returning disconsolate, when he descried the brass case glistening
between two planks of the bridge crossing the river at Momay, over
which torrent the instrument was suspended. The Lepchas have
generally been considered timorous of evil spirits, and especially
averse to travelling at night, even in company. However little this
gallant lad may have been given to superstition, he was nevertheless
a Lepcha, born in a warm region, and had never faced the cold till he
became my servant; and it required a stout heart and an honest one,
to spend a night in so awful a solitude as that which reigns around
the foot of the Kinchinjhow glacier.* [The fondness of natives for
hot springs wherever they occur is very natural and has been noticed
by Humboldt, "Pers. Narr." iv. 195, who states that on Christianity
being introduced into Iceland, the natives refused to be baptised in
any but the water of the Geysers. I have mentioned at chapter xxii
the uses to which the Yeumtong hot springs are put; and the custom of
using artificial hot baths is noticed at vol. i., chapter xiii.]

The villagers at Keadom, where we slept on the 26th, were busy
cutting the crops of millet, maize, and _Amaranthus._ A girl who, on
my way down the previous month, had observed my curiosity about a
singular variety of the maize, had preserved the heads on their
ripening, and now brought them to me. The peaches were all gathered,
and though only half ripe, were better than Dorjiling produce.
A magnificent tree of _Bucklandia,_ one of the most beautiful
evergreens in Sikkim, grew near this village; it had a trunk
twenty-one feet seven inches in girth, at five feet from the ground,
and was unbranched for forty feet.* [This superb tree is a great
desideratum in our gardens; I believe it would thrive in the warm
west of England. Its wood is brown, and not valuable as timber, but
the thick, bright, glossy, evergreen foliage is particularly
handsome, and so is the form of the crown. It is also interesting in
a physiological point of view, from the woody fibre being studded
with those curious microscopic discs so characteristic of pines, and
which when occurring on fossil wood are considered conclusive as to
the natural family to which such woods belong. Geologists should bear
in mind that not only does the whole natural order to which
_Bucklandia_ belongs, possess this character, but also various
species of _Magnoliaceae_ found in India, Australia, Borneo, and
South America.] Ferns and the beautiful air-plant _Coelogyne
Wallichii_ grew on its branches, with other orchids, while _Clematis_
and _Stauntonia_ climbed the trunk. Such great names (Buckland,
Staunton, and Wallich) thus brought before the traveller's notice,
never failed to excite lively and pleasing emotions: it is the
ignorant and unfeeling alone who can ridicule the association of the
names of travellers and naturalists with those of animals and plants.

We arrived at Choongtam (for the fourth time) at noon, and took up
our quarters in a good house near the temple. The autumn and winter
flowering plants now prevailed here, such as _Labiatae,_ which are
generally late at this elevation; and grasses, which, though rare in
the damp forest regions, are so common on these slopes that I here
gathered twenty-six kinds. I spent a day here in order to collect
seeds of the superb rhododendrons* [These Rhododendrons are now all
flourishing at Kew and elsewhere: they are _R. Dalhousiae, arboreum,
Maddeni, Edgeworthii, Aucklandii_ and _virgatum._] which I had
discovered in May, growing on the hills behind. The ascent was now
difficult, from the length of the wiry grass, which rendered the
slopes so slippery that it was impossible to ascend without holding
on by the tussocks.

A ragged Tibetan mendicant (Phud) was amusing the people: he put on a
black mask with cowrie shells for eyes, and danced uncouth figures
with a kind of heel and toe shuffle, in excellent time, to rude
Tibetan songs of his own: for this he received ample alms, which a
little boy collected in a wallet. These vagrants live well upon
charity; they bless, curse, and transact little affairs of all kinds
up and down the valleys of Sikkim and Tibet; this one dealt in red
clay teapots, sheep and puppies.

We found Meepo at Choongtam: I had given him leave (when here last)
to go back to the Rajah, and to visit his wife; and he had returned
with instructions to conduct me to the Chola and Yakla passes, in
Eastern Sikkim. These passes, like that of Tunkra (chapter xxii),
lead over the Chola range to that part of Tibet which is interposed
between Sikkim and Bhotan. My road lay past the Rajah's residence,
which we considered very fortunate, as apparently affording Campbell
an opportunity of a conference with his highness, for which both he
and the Tchebu Lama were most anxious.

On the way down the Lachen-Lachoong, we found the valley still
flooded (as described at chapters xviii and xxx), and the alders
standing with their trunks twelve feet under water; but the shingle
dam was now dry and hard: it would probably soften, and be carried
away by the first rains of the following year. I left here the
temperate flora of northern Sikkim, tropical forms commencing to
appear: of these the nettle tribe were most numerous in the woods.
A large grape, with beautiful clusters of round purple berries, was
very fair eating; it is not the common vine of Europe, which
nevertheless is probably an Himalayan plant, the _Vitis Indica._*
[The origin of the common grape being unknown, it becomes a curious
question to decide whether the Himalayan _Vitis Indica_ is the wild
state of that plant: an hypothesis strengthened by the fact of
Bacchus, etc., having come from the East.]

Illustration--TIETAN PHUD.

At Chakoong the temperature of the river, which in May was 54
degrees, was now 51.5 degrees at 3 p.m. We did not halt here, but
proceeded to Namgah, a very long and fatiguing march. Thence a short
march took us to Singtam, which we reached on the 30th of October.
The road by which I had come up was for half the distance obliterated
in most parts by landslips,* [I took a number of dips and strikes of
the micaceous rocks: the strike of these was as often north-east as
north-west; it was ever varying, and the strata were so disturbed, as
materially to increase the number and vast dimensions of the
landslips.] but they were hard and dry, and the leeches were gone.

Bad weather, and Campbell's correspondence with the Durbar, who
prevented all communication with the Rajah, detained us here two
days, after which we crossed to the Teesta valley, and continued
along its east bank to Tucheam, 2000 feet above the river.
We obtained a magnificent view of the east face of Kinchinjunga, its
tops bearing respectively N. 62 degrees W., and N. 63 degrees W.: the
south slope of the snowed portion in profile was 34 degrees, and of
the north 40 degrees; but both appeared much steeper to the eye, when
unaided by an instrument.

The great shrubby nettle (_Urtica crenulata_) is common here: this
plant, called "Mealum-ma," attains fifteen feet in height; it has
broad glossy leaves, and though apparently without stings, is held in
so great dread,* [The stinging hairs are microscopic, and confined to
the young shoots, leaf and flower-stalks. Leschenault de la Tour
describes being stung by this nettle on three fingers of his hand
only at the Calcutta Botanical Gardens, and the subsequent sneezing
and running at the nose, followed by tetanic symptoms and two days'
suffering, nor did the effects disappear for nine days. It is a
remarkable fact that the plant stings violently only at this season.
I frequently gathered it with impunity on subsequent occasions, and
suspected some inaccuracy in my observations; but in Silhet both Dr.
Thomson and I experienced the same effects in autumn. Endlicher
("Lindley's Vegetable Kingdom") attributes the causticity of
nettle-juice to bicarbonate of ammonia, which Dr. Thomson and I
ascertained was certainly not present in this species.] that I had
difficulty in getting help to cut it down. I gathered many specimens
without allowing any part to touch my skin; still the scentless
effluvium was so powerful, that mucous matter poured from my eyes and
nose all the rest of the afternoon, in such abundance, that I had to
hold my head over a basin for an hour. The sting is very virulent,
producing inflammation; and to punish a child with "Mealum-ma" is the
severest Lepcha threat. Violent fevers and death have been said to
ensue from its sting; but this I very much doubt.

Tea-pot, cup, and brick of tea; knife, tobacco-pipe (across
chop-sticks, pouch, and flint-and-steel.


Journey to the Rajah's residence at Tumloong -- Ryott valley --
Rajah's house -- Tupgain Lama -- Lagong nunnery -- Phadong Goompa --
Phenzong ditto -- Lepcha Sepoys -- Proceedings at Tumloong -- Refused
admittance to Rajah -- Women's dresses -- Meepo's and Tchebu Lama's
families -- Chapel -- Leave for Chola pass -- Ryott river -- Rungpo,
view from -- Deputation of Kajees, etc. -- Conference -- Laghep --
Eatable fruit of _Decaisnia_ -- _Cathcartia_ -- Rhododendrons --
Phieung-goong -- Pines -- Rutto river -- Barfonchen -- Curling of
rhododendron leaf -- Woodcock -- Chola pass -- -- Small lakes --
Tibet guard and sepoys -- Dingpun -- Arrival of Sikkim sepoys --
Their conduct -- Meet Singtam Soubah -- Chumanako -- We are seized by
the Soubah's party -- Soubah's conduct -- Dingpun Tinli -- Treatment
of Dr. Campbell -- Bound and guarded -- Separated from Campbell --
Marched to Tumloong -- Motives for such conduct -- Arrive at Rungpo
-- At Phadong -- Presents from Rajah -- Visits of Lama -- Of Singtam
Soubah -- I am cross-questioned by Amlah -- Confined with Campbell --
Seizure of my Coolies -- Threats of attacking Dorjiling.

We started on the 3rd of November for Tumloong (or Sikkim Durbar),
Dr. Campbell sending Tchebu Lama forward with letters to announce his
approach. A steep ascent, through large trees of _Rhododendron
arboreum,_ led over a sharp spur of mica-schist (strike north-west
and dip north-east), beyond which the whole bay-like valley of the
Ryott opened before us, presenting one of the most lovely and fertile
landscapes in Sikkim. It is ten miles long, and three or four broad,
flanked by lofty mountains, and its head girt by the beautiful snowy
range of Chola, from which silvery rills descend through black
pine-woods, dividing innumerable converging cultivated spurs, and
uniting about 2000 feet below us, in a profound gorge. Everywhere
were scattered houses, purple crops of buckwheat, green fields of
young wheat, yellow millet, broad green plantains, and orange groves.

We crossed spur after spur, often under or over precipices about
fifteen hundred feet above the river, proceeding eastwards to the
village of Rangang, whence we caught sight of the Rajah's house.
It was an irregular low stone building of Tibetan architecture, with
slanting walls and small windows high up under the broad thatched
roof, above which, in the middle, was a Chinese-looking square
copper-gilt canopy, with projecting eaves and bells at the corners,
surmounted by a ball and square spire. On either gable of the roof
was a round-topped cylinder of gilded copper, something like a closed
umbrella; this is a very frequent and characteristic Boodhist
ornament, and is represented in Turner's plate of the mausoleum of
Teshoo Lama ("Tibet" plate xi.); indeed the Rajah's canopy at
Tumloong is probably a copy of the upper part of the building there
represented, having been built by architects from Teshoo Loombo.
It was surrounded by chaits, mendongs, poles with banners, and other
religious erections; and though beautifully situated on a flat
terrace overlooking the valley, we were much disappointed with its
size and appearance.

On the brow of the hill behind was the large red goompa of the
Tupgain Lama, the late heir-apparent to the temporal and spiritual
authority in Sikkim; and near it a nunnery called Lagong, the lady
abbess of which is a daughter of the Rajah, who, with the assistance
of sisters, keeps an enormous Mani, or praying-cylinder, revolving
perpetually to the prayer of "Om Mani Padmi hom." On this side was a
similar spur, on which the gilded pinnacles and copper canopy of the
Phadong* [Phadong means Royal, and this temple answers to a chapel
royal for the Rajah.] goompa gleamed through the trees. At a
considerable distance across the head of the valley was still a third
goompa, that of Phenzong.

We were met by a large party of armed Lepchas, dressed in blue and
white striped kirtles, broad loose scarlet jackets; and the little
bamboo wattle hat lined with talc, and surmounted by a peacock's
feather; they escorted us to the village, and then retired.

We encamped a few hundred feet below the Rajah's house, and close by
those of Meepo and the Tchebu Lama's family, who are among the oldest
and most respectable of Tibetan origin in Sikkim. The population on
this, the north side of the Ryott, consists principally of Sikkim
Bhoteeas and Tibetans, while the opposite is peopled by Lepchas.
Crowds came to see us, and many brought presents, with which we were
overwhelmed; but we could not help remarking that our cordial
greetings were wholly from the older families attached to the Rajah,
and from the Lamas; none proceeded from the Dewan's relatives or
friends, nor therefore any in the name of the Rajah himself, or of
the Sikkim government.

Tchebu Lama vainly used every endeavour to procure for us an audience
with his highness; who was surrounded by his councillors, or Amlah,
all of whom were adherents of the Dewan, who was in Tibet. My man
Meepo, and the Tchebu Lama; who were ordered to continue in official
attendance upon us, shrugged their shoulders, but could suggest no
remedy. On the following morning Campbell was visited by many
parties, amongst whom were the Lama's family, and that of the late
Dewan (Ilam Sing), who implored us to send again to announce our
presence, and not to dismiss at once the moonshie and his office,*
[It is usual in India for Government officers when about to transact
business, to travel with a staff (called office) of native
interpreters, clerks, etc., of whom the chief is commonly called
moonchie.] who had accompanied us for the purpose of a conference
with the Rajah. Their wishes were complied with, and we waited till
noon before proceeding.

Illustration--TCHEBU LAMA.

A gay and animated scene was produced by the concourse of women,
dressed in their pretty striped and crossed cloaks, who brought
tokens of good-will. Amongst them Meepo's wife appeared conspicuous
from the large necklaces* [The lumps of amber forming these (called
"Poshea") were larger than the fist: they are procured in East Tibet,
probably from Birmah.] and amulets, corals, and silver filagree work,
with which her neck and shoulders were loaded: she wore on her head a
red tiara ("Patuk") bedizened with seed pearls and large turquoises,
and a gold fillet of filagree bosses united by a web of slender
chains; her long tails were elaborately plaited, and woven with
beads, and her cloak hooked in front by a chain of broad silver links
studded with turquoises. White silk scarfs, the emblem of peace and
friendship, were thrown over our hands by each party; and rice, eggs,
fowls, kids, goats, and Murwa beer, poured in apace, to the great
delight of our servants.

We returned two visits of ceremony, one to Meepo's house, a poor
cottage, to which we carried presents of chintz dresses for his two
little girls, who were busy teazing their hair with cylindrical
combs, formed of a single slender joint of bamboo slit all round
half-way up into innumerable teeth. Our other visit was paid to the
Lama's family, who inhabited a large house not far from the Rajah's.
The lower story was an area enclosed by stone walls, into which the
cattle, etc., were driven. An outside stone stair led to the upper
story, where we were received by the head of the family, accompanied
by a great concourse of Lamas. He conducted us to a beautiful little
oratory at one end of the building, fitted up like a square temple,
and lighted with latticed windows, covered with brilliant and
tasteful paintings by Lhassan artists. The beams of the ceiling were
supported by octagonal columns painted red, with broad capitals.
Everywhere the lotus, the mani, and the chirki (or wheel with three
rays, emblematic of the Boodhist Trinity), were introduced; "Om Mani
Padmi hom" in gilt letters, adorned the projecting end of every
beam;* [A mythical animal with a dog's head and blood-red spot over
the forehead was not uncommon in this chapel, and is also seen in the
Sikkim temples and throughout Tibet. Ermann, in his Siberian Travels,
mentions it as occurring in the Khampa Lama's temple at Maimao chin;
he conjectures it to have been the Cyclops of the Greeks, which
according to the Homeric myth had a mark on the forehead, instead of
an eye. The glory surrounding the heads of Tibetan deities is also
alluded to by Ermann, who recognises in it the Nimbus of the
ancients, used to protect the heads of statues from the weather, and
from being soiled by birds; and adds that the glory of the ancient
masters in painting was no doubt introduced into the Byzantine school
from the Boodhists.] and the Chinese "cloud messenger," or winged
dragon, floated in azure and gold along the capitals and beams,
amongst scrolls and groups of flowers. At one end was a sitting
figure of Gorucknath in Lama robes, surrounded by a glory, with mitre
and beads; the right hand holding the Dorje, and the forefinger
raised in prayer. Around was a good library of books. More presents
were brought here, and tea served.


The route to Chola pass, which crosses the range of that name south
of the Chola peak (17,320 feet) at the head of this valley, is across
the Ryott, and then eastwards along a lofty ridge. Campbell started
at noon, and I waited behind with Meepo, who wished me to see the
Rajah's dwelling, to which we therefore ascended; but, to my guide's
chagrin, we were met and turned back by a scribe, or clerk, of the
Amlah. We were followed by a messenger, apologising and begging me to
return; but I had already descended 1000 feet, and felt no
inclination to reascend the hill, especially as there did not appear
to be anything worth seeing. Soon after I had overtaken Campbell, he
was accosted by an excessively dirty fellow, who desired him to
return for a conference with the Amlah; this was of course declined,
but, at the same time, Campbell expressed his readiness to receive
the Amlah at our halting place.

The Ryott flows in a very tropical gorge 2000 feet above the sea;
from the proximity of the snowy mountains, its temperature was only
64.3 degrees. Thence the ascent is very steep to Rungpo, where we
took up our quarters at a rest house at an height of 6008 feet.
This road is well kept, and hence onwards is traversed yearly by the
Rajah on his way to his summer residence of Choombi, two marches
beyond the Cbola pass; whither he is taken to avoid the Sikkim rains,
which are peculiarly disagreeable to Tibetans. Rungpo commands a most
beautiful view northwards, across the valley, of the royal residence,
temples, goompas, hamlets, and cultivation, scattered over spurs that
emerge from the forest, studded below with tree-ferns and plantains,
and backed by black pine-woods and snowy mountains. In the evening
the Amlah arrived to confer with Campbell; at first there was a
proposal of turning us out of the house, in which there was plenty of
room besides, but as we declined to move, except by his Highness's
order, they put up in houses close by.

On the following morning they met us as we were departing for Chola
pass, bringing large presents in the name of the Rajah, and excuses
on their and his part for having paid us no respect at Tumloong,
saying, that it was not the custom to receive strangers till after
they had rested a day, that they were busy preparing a suitable
reception, etc.; this was all false, and contrary to etiquette, but
there was no use in telling them so. Campbell spoke firmly and kindly
to them, and pointed out their incivility and the unfriendly tone of
their whole conduct. They then desired Campbell to wait and discuss
business affairs with them; this was out of the question, and he
assured them that he was ever ready to do so with the Rajah, that he
was now (as he had informed his Highness) on his way with me to the
Chola and Yakla passes, and that we had, for want of coolies, left
some loads behind us, which, if they were really friendly, they would
forward. This they did, and so we parted; they (contrary to
expectation) making no objection to Campbell's proceeding with me.

A long march up a very steep, narrow ridge took us by a good road to
Laghep, a stone resting-house (alt. 10,475 feet) on a very narrow
flat. I had abundance of occupation in gathering rhododendron-seeds,
of which I procured twenty-four kinds* [These occurred in the
following order in ascending, commencing at 6000 feet.--1. _R.
Dalhousiae_; 2. _R. vaccinioides_; 3. _R. camelliaeflorwm_; 4. _R.
arboreum._ Above 8000 feet:--5. _R. argenteum_; 6. _R. Falconeri_;
7. _R. barbatum_; 8. _R. Campbelliae_; 9. _R. Edgeworthii_; 10. _R.
niveum_; 11. _R. Thomsoni_; 12. _R. cinnabarinum_; 13. _R. glaucum._
Above 10,500 feet:--14. _R. lanatum_; 15. _R. virgatum_; 16. _R.
campylocarpum_; 17. _R. ciliatum_; 18. _R. Hodgsoni_; 19. _R.
campanulatum._ Above 12,000 feet:--20. _R. lepidotum_; 21. _R.
fulgens_; 22. _R. Wightianum_; 23. _R. anthopogon_; 24. _R.
setosum._] on this and the following day.

A very remarkable plant, which I had seen in flower in the Lachen
valley, called "Loodoo-ma" by the Bhoteeas, and "Nomorchi" by
Lepchas, grew on the ridge at 7000 feet; it bears a yellow fruit like
short cucumbers, full of a soft, sweet, milky pulp, and large black
seeds; it belongs to a new genus,* [This genus, for which Dr. Thomson
and I, in our "Flora Indies," have proposed the name _Decaisnea_ (in
honour of my friend Professor J. Decaisne, the eminent French
botanist), has several straight, stick-like, erect branches from the
root, which bear spreading pinnated leaves, two feet long, standing
out horizontally. The flowers are uni-sexual, green, and in racemes,
and the fruits, of which two or three grow together, are about four
inches long, and one in diameter. All the other plants of the natural
order to which it belongs, are climbers.] allied to _Stauntonia,_ of
which two Himalayan kinds produce similar, but less agreeable edible
fruits ("Kole-pot," Lepcha). At Laghep, iris was abundant, and a
small bushy berberry (_B. concinna_) with oval eatable berries. The
north wall of the house (which was in a very exposed spot) was quite
bare, while the south was completely clothed with moss and weeds.

The rocks above Laghep were gneiss; below it, mica-schist, striking
north-west, and dipping north-east, at a high angle. A beautiful
yellow poppy-like plant grew in clefts at 10,000 feet; it has
flowered in England, from seeds which I sent home, and bears the name
of _Cathcartia._* [See "Botanical Magazine," for 1852. The name was
given in honour of the memory of my friend, the late J. F. Cathcart,
Esq., of the Bengal Civil Service. This gentleman was devoted to the
pursuit of botany, and caused a magnificent series of drawings of
Dorjiling plants to be made by native artists during his residence
there. This collection is now deposited at Kew, through the
liberality of his family, and it is proposed to publish a selection
from the plates, as a tribute to his memory. Mr. Cathcart, after the
expiration of his Indian service, returned to Europe, and died at
Lausanne on his way to England.]

We continued, on the following morning, in an easterly direction, up
the same narrow steep ridge, to a lofty eminence called Phieung-goong
(alt. 12,422 feet), from being covered with the Phieung, or small
bamboo. _Abies Webbiana_ begins here, and continues onwards, but, as
on Tonglo, Mainom, and the other outer wetter Sikkim ranges, there is
neither larch, _Pinus excelsa, Abies Smithiana,_ or _A. Brunoniana._

Hence we followed an oblique descent of 1,500 feet, to the bed of the
Rutto river, through thick woods of pines and _Rhododendron
Hodgsoni,_ which latter, on our again ascending, was succeeded by the
various alpine kinds. We halted at Barfonchen (alt. 11,233 feet), a
stone-but in the silver-fir forest. Some yaks were grazing in the
vicinity, and from their herdsman we learnt that the Dewan was at
Choombi, on the road to Yakla; he had kept wholly out of the way
during the summer, directing every unfriendly action to be pursued
towards myself and the government by the Amlah, consisting of his
brothers and relatives, whom he left at Tumloong.

The night was brilliant and starlight: the minimum thermometer fell
to 27 degrees, a strong north-east wind blew down the valley, and
there was a thick hoar-frost, with which the black yaks were drolly
powdered. The broad leaves of _R. Hodgsoni_ were curled, from the
expansion of the frozen fluid in the layer of cells on the upper
surface of the leaf, which is exposed to the greatest cold of
radiation. The sun restores them a little, but as winter advances,
they become irrecoverably cured, and droop at the ends of the

We left Barfonchen on the 7th November, and ascended the river, near
which we put up a woodcock. Emerging from the woods at Chumanako
(alt. 12,590 feet), where there is another stone hut, the mountains
become bleak, bare, and stony, and the rocks are all moutonneed by
ancient glaciers. At 13,000 feet the ground was covered with ice, and
all the streams were frozen. Crossing several rocky ledges, behind
which were small lakes, a gradual ascent led to the summit of the
Chola pass, a broad low depression, 14,925 feet above the sea, wholly
bare of snow.

Campbell had preceded me, and I found him conversing with some
Tibetans, who told him that there was no road hence to Yakla, and
that we should not be permitted to go to Choombi. As the Chinese
guard was posted in the neighbourhood, he accompanied one of the
Tibetans to see the commandant, whilst I remained taking
observations. The temperature was 33 degrees, with a violent, biting,
dry east wind. The rocks were gneiss, striking north-east, and
horizontal, or dipping north-west. The scanty vegetation consisted
chiefly of grass and _Sibbaldia._

In about an hour Meepo and some of my people came up and asked for
Campbell, for whom the Tchebu Lama was waiting below: the Lama had
remained at Rungpo, endeavouring to put matters on a better footing
with the Amlah. Wishing to see the Tibet guard myself, I accompanied
the two remaining Tibetans down a steep valley with cliffs on either
hand, for several hundred feet, when I was overtaken by some Sikkim
sepoys in red jackets, who wanted to turn me back forcibly: I was at
a loss to understand their conduct, and appealed to the Tibetan
sepoys, who caused them to desist. About 1000 feet down I found
Campbell, with a body of about ninety Tibetans, a few of whom were
armed with matchlocks, and the rest with bows and arrows. They were
commanded by a Dingpun, a short swarthy man, with a flat-crowned cap
with floss-silk hanging all round, and a green glass button in front;
he wore a loose scarlet jacket, broadly edged with black velvet, and
having great brass buttons of the Indian naval uniform; his subaltern
was similarly dressed, but his buttons were those of the 44th Bengal
Infantry. The commandant having heard of our wish to go round by
Choombi, told Campbell that he had come purposely to inform him that
there was no road that way to Yakla; he was very polite, ordering his
party to rise and salute me when I arrived, and doing the same when
we both left.

On our return we were accompanied by the Dingpun of the Tibetans and
a few of his people, and were soon met by more Sikkim sepoys, who
said they were sent from the Durbar, to bring Campbell back to
transact business; they behaved very rudely, and when still half a
mile from the Sikkim frontier, jostled him and feigned to draw their
knives, and one of them pointed a spear-headed bow to his breast.
Campbell defended himself with a stick, and remonstrated with them on
their rudeness; and I, who had nothing but a barometer in my hand,
called up the Tibetans. The Dingpun came instantly, and driving the
Sikkim people forward, escorted us to the frontier, where he took an
inscribed board from the chait, and showing us the great vermilion
seal of the Emperor of China (or more probably of the Lhassan
authorities) on one side, and two small brown ones of the Sikkim
Rajah on the other; and giving us to understand that here his
jurisdiction ceased, he again saluted and left us.

On descending, I was surprised to meet the Singtam Soubah, whom I had
not seen since leaving Tungu; he was seated on a rock, and I remarked
that he looked ashy pale and haggard, and that he salaamed to me
only, and not to Campbell; and that Tchebu Lama, who was with him,
seemed very uncomfortable. The Soubah wanted Campbell to stop for a
conference, which at such a time, and in such a wind, was impossible,
so he followed us to Chumanako, where we proposed to pass the night.

A great party of Sikkim Bhoteeas had assembled here, all strangers to
me: I certainly thought the concourse unusually large, and the
previous conduct to Campbell, strange, rude, and quite
unintelligible, especially before the Tibetans. But the Bhoteeas were
always a queer, and often insolent people,* [Captain Pemberton during
his mission to Bhotan was repeatedly treated with the utmost
insolence by the officials in that country (see Griffith's Journal).
My Sirdar, Nimbo, himself a native of Bhotan, saw a good deal of the
embassy when there, and told me many particulars as to the treatment
to which it had been subjected, and the consequent low estimation in
which both the ambassadors themselves and the Government whom they
represented were held in Bhotan.] whom I was long ago tired of trying
to understand, and they might have wanted to show off before their
neighbours; and such was the confidence with which my long travels
amongst them had inspired me, that the possibility of danger or
violence never entered my head.

We went into the hut, and were resting ourselves on a log at one end
of it, when, the evening being very cold, the people crowded in; on
which Campbell went out, saying, that we had better leave the hut to
them, and that he would see the tents pitched. He had scarcely left,
when I heard him calling loudly to me, "Hooker! Hooker! the savages
are murdering me!" I rushed to the door, and caught sight of him
striking out with his fists, and struggling violently; being tall and
powerful, he had already prostrated a few, but, a host of men bore
him down, and appeared to be trampling on him; at the same moment I
was myself seized by eight men, who forced me back into the hut, and
down on the log, where they held me in a sitting posture, pressing me
against the wall; here I spent a few moments of agony, as I heard my
friend's stifled cries grow fainter and fainter. I struggled but
little, and that only at first, for at least five-and-twenty men
crowded round and laid their hands upon me, rendering any effort to
move useless; they were, however, neither angry nor violent, and
signed to me to keep quiet. I retained my presence of mind, and felt
comfort in remembering that I saw no knives used by the party who
fell on Campbell, and that if their intentions had been murderous, an
arrow would have been the more sure and less troublesome weapon.
It was evident that the whole animus was directed against Campbell,
and though at first alarmed on my own account, all the inferences
which, with the rapidity of lightning my mind involuntarily drew,
were favourable.

After a few minutes, three persons came into the hut, and seated
themselves opposite to me: I only recognised two of them; namely, the
Singtam Soubah, pale, trembling like a leaf, and with great drops of
sweat trickling from his greasy brow; and the Tchebu Lama, stolid,
but evidently under restraint, and frightened. The former ordered the
men to leave hold of me, and to stand guard on either side, and, in a
violently agitated manner, he endeavoured to explain that Campbell
was a prisoner by the orders of the Rajah, who was dissatisfied with
his conduct as a government officer, during the past twelve years;
and that he was to be taken to the Durbar and confined till the
supreme government at Calcutta should confirm such articles as he
should be compelled to subscribe to; he also wanted to know from me
how Campbell would be likely to behave. I refused to answer any
questions till I should be informed why I was myself made prisoner;
on which he went away, leaving me still guarded. My own Sirdar then
explained that Campbell had been knocked down, tied hand and foot,
and taken to his tent, and that all his coolies were also bound, our
captors claiming them as Sikkimites, and subjects of the Rajah.

Shortly afterwards the three returned, the Soubah looking more
spectral than ever, and still more violently agitated, and I thought
I perceived that whatever were his plans, he had failed in them.
He asked me what view the Governor-General would take of this
proceeding? and receiving no answer, he went off with the Tchebu
Lama, and left me with the third individual. The latter looked
steadily at me for some time, and then asked if I did not know him.
I said I did not, when he gave his name as Dingpun Tinli, and I
recognised in him one of the men whom the Dewan had sent to conduct
us to the top of Mainom the previous year (see vol. i. chapter xiii).
This opened my eyes a good deal, for he was known to be a right-hand
man of the Dewan's, and had within a few months been convicted of
kidnapping two Brahmin girls from Nepal,* [This act as I have
mentioned at v. i. chapter xv, was not only a violation of the
British treaty, but an outrage on the religion of Nepal.
Jung Bahadoor demanded instant restitution, which Campbell effected;
thus incurring the Dingpun's wrath, who lost, besides his prize, a
good deal of money which the escapade cost him.] and had vowed
vengeance against Campbell for the duty he performed in bringing him
to punishment.

I was soon asked to go to my tent, which I found pitched close by;
they refused me permission to see my fellow-prisoner, or to be near
him, but allowed me to hang up my instruments, and arrange my
collections. My guards were frequently changed during the night,
Lepchas often taking a turn; they repeatedly assured me that there
was no complaint or ill-feeling against me, that the better classes
in Sikkim would be greatly ashamed of the whole affair, that Tchebu
Lama was equally a prisoner, and that the grievances against Campbell
were of a political nature, but what they were they did not know.

The night was very cold (thermometer 26 degrees), and two inches of
snow fell. I took as many of my party as I could into my tent, they
having no shelter fit for such an elevation (12,590 feet) at this
season. Through the connivance of some of the people, I managed to
correspond with Campbell, who afterwards gave me the following
account of the treatment he had received. He stated that on leaving
the hut, he had been met by Meepo, who told him the Soubah had
ordered his being turned out. A crowd of sepoys then fell on him and
brought him to the ground, knocked him on the head, trampled on him,
and pressed his neck down to his chest as he lay, as if endeavouring
to break it. His feet were tied, and his arms pinioned behind, the
wrist of the right hand being bound to the left arm above the elbow;
the cords were then doubled, and he was violently shaken. The Singtam
Soubah directed all this, which was performed chiefly by the Dingpun
Tinli and Jongpun Sangabadoo.* [This was the other man sent with us
to Mainom, by the Dewan, in the previous December.] After this the
Soubah came to me, as I have related; and returning, had Campbell
brought bound before him, and asked him, through Tchebu Lama, if he
would write from dictation. The Soubah was violent, excited, and
nervous; Tchebu Lama scared. Campbell answered, that if they
continued torturing him (which was done by twisting the cords round
his wrists by a bamboo-wrench), he might say or do anything, but that
his government would not confirm any acts thus extorted. The Soubah
became still more violent, shook his bow in Campbell's face, and
drawing his hand significantly across his throat, repeated his
questions, adding others, enquiring why he had refused to receive the
Lassoo Kajee as Vakeel, etc. (see chapter xviii).

The Soubah's people, meanwhile, gradually slunk away, seeing which he
left Campbell, who was taken to his tent.

Early next morning Meepo was sent by the Soubah, to ask whether I
would go to Yakla pass, or return to Dorjiling, and to say that the
Rajah's orders had been very strict that I was not to be molested,
and that I might proceed to whatever passes I wished to visit, whilst
Campbell was to be taken back to the Durbar, to transact business.
I was obliged to call upon the Soubah and Dingpun to explain their
conduct of the previous day, which they declared arose from no
ill-feeling, but simply from their fear of my interfering in
Campbell's behalf; they could not see what reason I had to complain,
so long as I was neither hurt nor bound. I tried in vain to explain
to them that they could not so play fast and loose with a British
subject, and insisted that if they really considered me free, they
should place me with Campbell, under whose protection I considered
myself, he being still the Governor-General's agent.

Much discussion followed this: Meepo urged me to go on to Yakla, and
leave these bad people; and the Soubah and Dingpun, who had exceeded
their orders in laying hands on me, both wished me away. My course
was, however, clear as to the propriety of keeping as close to
Campbell as I was allowed, so they reluctantly agreed to take me with
him to the Durbar.

Tchebu Lama came to me soon afterwards, looking as stolid as ever,
but with a gulping in his throat; he alone was glad I was going with
them, and implored me to counsel Campbell not to irritate the Amlah
by a refusal to accede to their dictates, in which case his life
might be the forfeit. As to himself, the opposite faction had now got
the mastery, there was nothing for it but to succumb, and his throat
would surely be cut. I endeavoured to comfort him with the assurance
that they dared not hurt Campbell, and that this conduct of a party
of ruffians, influenced by the Dewan and their own private pique, did
not represent his Rajah's feelings and wishes, as he himself knew;
but the poor fellow was utterly unnerved, and shaking hands warmly,
with his eyes full of tears, he took his leave.

We were summoned by the Dingpun to march at 10 a.m.: I demanded an
interview with Campbell first, which was refused; but I felt myself
pretty safe, and insisting upon it, he was brought to me. He was
sadly bruised about the head, arms, and wrists, walked very lame, and
had a black eye to boot, but was looking stout and confident.

I may here mention that seizing the representative of a neighbouring
power and confining him till he shall have become amenable to terms,
is a common practice along the Tibet, Sikkim, and Bhotan frontiers.
It had been resorted to in 1847, by the Bhotanese, under the
instructions of the Paro Pilo, who waylaid the Sikkim Rajah when
still in Tibet, on his return from Jigatzi, and beleagured him for
two months, endeavouring to bring him to their terms about some
border dispute; on this occasion the Rajah applied to the British
government for assistance, which was refused; and he was ultimately
rescued by a Tibetan force.

In the present case the Dewan issued orders that Campbell was to be
confined at Tumloong till he himself should arrive there; and the
Rajah was kept in ignorance of the affair. The Sepoys who met us on
our approach to Tumloong on the 3rd of November, were, I suspect,
originally sent for the purpose; and I think that the Amlah also had
followed us to Rungpo with the same object. Their own extreme
timidity, and the general good-feeling in the country towards
Campbell prevented its execution before, and, as a last resource,
they selected the Singtam Soubah and Dingpun Tinli for the office, as
being personally hostile to him. The Dewan meanwhile being in Tibet,
and knowing that we were about to visit the frontier, for which I had
full permission and escort, sent up the Tibetan guard, hoping to
embroil them in the affair; in this he failed, and it drew upon him
the anger of the Lhassan authorities.* [In the following summer
(1850), when the Rajah, Dewan, and Soubah, repaired to Choombi, the
Lhassan authorities sent a Commissioner to inquire into the affair,
understanding that the Dewan had attempted to embroil the Tibetans in
it. The commissioner asked the Rajah why he had committed such an
outrage on the representative of the British government, under whose
protection he was; thus losing his territory, and bringing English
troops so near the Tibet frontier. The Rajah answered that he never
did anything of the kind; that he was old and infirm, and unable to
transact all his affairs; that the mischief had arisen out of the
acts and ignorance of others, and finally begged the Commissioner to
investigate the whole affair, and satisfy himself about it.
During the inquiry that followed, the Dewan threw all the blame on
the Tibetans, who, he said were alone implicated: this assertion was
easily disproved, and on the conclusion of the inquiry the
Commissioner railed vehemently at the Dewan, saying:--"You tried to
put this business on the people of my country; it is an abominable
lie. You did it yourselves, and no one else. The Company is a great
monarchy; you insulted it, and it has taken its revenge. If you, or
any other Tibetan, ever again cause a rupture with the English, you
shall be taken with ropes round your necks to Pekin, there to undergo
the just punishment of your offence under the sentence of the mighty
Emperor."] The Soubah, in endeavouring to extort the new treaty by
force, and the Dingpun, who had his own revenge to gratify, exceeded
their instructions in using violence towards Campbell, whom the Dewan
ordered should be simply taken and confined; they were consequently
disgraced, long before we were released, and the failure of the
stratagem thrown upon their shoulders.

During the march down to Laghep, Campbell was treated by the
Dingpun's men with great rudeness: I kept as near as I was allowed,
quietly gathering rhododendron seeds by the way. At the
camping-ground we were again separated, at which I remonstrated with
the Dingpun, also complaining of his people's insolent behaviour
towards their prisoner, which he promised should be discontinued.

The next day we reached Rungpo, where we halted for further
instructions: our tents were placed apart, but we managed to
correspond by stealth. On the 10th of November we were conducted to
Tumloong: a pony was brought for me, but I refused it, on seeing that
Campbell was treated with great indignity, and obliged to follow at
the tail of the mule ridden by the Dingpun, who thus marched him in
triumph up to the village.

I was taken to a house at Phadong, and my fellow traveller was
confined in another at some distance to the eastward, a stone's throw
below the Rajah's; and thrust into a little cage-like room. I was
soon visited by an old Lama, who assured me that we were both
perfectly safe, but that there were many grievances against Campbell.
The Soubah arrived shortly after, bringing me compliments, nominally
in the Rajah's name, and a substantial present, consisting of a large
cow, sheep, fowls, a brick of tea, bags of rice, flour, butter, eggs,
and a profusion of vegetables. I refused to take them on the friendly
terms on which they were brought, and only accepted them as
provisions during my detention. I remonstrated again about our
separation, and warned the Soubah of the inevitable consequence of
this outrage upon the representative of a friendly power, travelling
under the authority of his own government, unarmed and without
escort: he was greatly perplexed, and assured me that Campbell's
detention was only temporary, because he had not given satisfaction
to the Rajah, and as the latter could not get answers to his demands
from Calcutta in less than a month, it was determined to keep him
till then; but to send me to Dorjiling. He returned in the evening to
tell me that Campbell's men (with the exception only of the Ghorkas*
[These people stood in far greater fear of the Nepalese than of the
English, and the reason is obvious: the former allow no infraction of
their rights to pass unnoticed, whereas we had permitted every
article of our treaty to be contravened.]) had been seized, because
they were runaway slaves from Sikkim; but that I need not alarm
myself, for mine should be untouched.

The hut being small, and intolerably dirty, I pitched my tent close
by, and lived in it for seven days: I was not guarded, but so closely
watched, that I could not go out for the most trifling purpose,
except under surveillance. They were evidently afraid of my escaping;
I was however treated with civility, but forbidden to communicate
either with Campbell or with Dorjiling.

The Soubah frequently visited me, always protesting I was no
prisoner, that Campbell's seizure was a very trifling affair, and the
violence employed all a mistake. He always brought presents, and
tried to sound me about the government at Calcutta. On the 12th he
paid his last visit, looking wofully dejected, being out of favour at
court, and dismissed to his home: he referred me to Meepo for all
future communications to the Rajah, and bade me a most cordial
farewell, which I regretted being unable to return with any show of
kind feeling. Poor fellow! he had staked his last, and lost it, when
he undertook to seize the agent of the most powerful government in
the east, and to reduce him to the condition of a tool of the Dewan.
Despite the many obstructions he had placed in my way, we had not
fallen out since July; we had been constant companions, and though at
issue, never at enmity. I had impeached him, and my grievances had
been forwarded to the Rajah with a demand for his punishment, but he
never seemed to owe me a grudge for that, knowing the Rajah's
impotence as compared with the power of the Dewan whom he served;
and, in common with all his party, presuming on the unwillingness of
the British government to punish.

On the 13th of November I was hurriedly summoned by Meepo to the
Phadong temple, where I was interrogated by the Amlah, as the Rajah's
councillors (in this instance the Dewan's adherents) are called.
I found four China mats placed on a stone bench, on one of which I
was requested to seat myself, the others being occupied by the
Dewan's elder brother, a younger brother of the Gangtok Kajee (a man
of some wealth), and an old Lama: the conference took place in the
open air and amongst an immense crowd of Lamas, men, women,
and children.

I took the initiative (as I made a point of doing on all such
occasions) and demanded proper interpreters, which were refused; and
the Amlah began a rambling interrogatory in Tibetan, through my
Lepcha Sirdar Pakshok, who spoke very little Tibetan or Hindostanee,
and my half-caste servant, who spoke as little English. The Dewan's
brother was very nervously counting his beads, and never raised his
eyes while I kept mine steadily upon him.

He suggested most of the queries, every one of which took several
minutes, as he was constantly interrupted by the Kajee, who was very
fat and stupid: the Lama scarcely spoke, and the bystanders never.
My connection with the Indian government was first enquired into; next they came to political matters, upon which I declined entering; but I gathered that their object was to oblige Campbell to accept the Lassoo Kajee as Vakeel, to alter the slavery laws, to draw a new boundary line with Nepal, to institute direct communication between themselves and the Governor-General,* [They were prompted to demand this by an unfortunate oversight that occurred at Calcutta some years before. Vakeels from the Sikkim Durbar repaired to that capital, and though unaccredited by the Governor-General's agent at Dorjiling, were (in the absence of the Governor-General) received by the president of the council in open Durbar. The effect was of course to reduce the Governor-General's agent at Dorjiling to a cipher.] and to engage that there should be no trade or communication between Sikkim and India, except through the Dewan: all of these subjects related to the terms of the original treaty between the Rajah and the Indian government. They told me they had sent these proposals to the government through Dorjiling,* [These letters, which concluded with a line stating that Campbell was detained at Tumloong till favourable answers should be received, had arrived at Dorjiling; but being written in Tibetan, and containing matters into which no one but Campbell could enter, they were laid on one side till his return.
The interpreter did not read the last line, which stated that Dr. Campbell was detained till answers were received, and the fact of our capture and imprisonment therefore remained unknown for several weeks.] but had received no acknowledgment from the latter place, and they wanted to know the probable result at Calcutta. As the only answer I could give might irritate them, I again declined giving any. Lastly, they assured me that no blame was imputed to myself, that on the contrary I had been travelling under the Rajah's protection, who rejoiced in my success, that I might have visited Yakla pass as I had intended doing, but that preferring to accompany my friend, they had allowed me to do so, and that I might now either join him, or continue to live in my tent: of course I joyfully accepted the former proposal. After being refused permission to send a letter to Dorjiling, except I would write in a character which they could read, I asked if they had anything more to say, and being answered in the negative, I was taken by Meepo to Campbell, heartily glad to end a parley which had lasted for an hour and a half.

I found my friend in good health and spirits, strictly guarded in a
small thatched hut, of bamboo wattle and clay: the situation was
pretty, and commanded a view of the Ryott valley and the snowy
mountains; there were some picturesque chaits hard by, and a
blacksmith's forge. Our walks were confined to a few steps in front
of the hut, and included a puddle and a spring of water. We had one
black room with a small window, and a fire in the middle on a stone;
we slept in the narrow apartment behind it, which was the cage in
which Campbell had been at first confined, and which exactly admitted
us both, lying on the floor. Two or three Sepoys occupied an
adjoining room, and had a peep-hole through the partition-wall.

My gratification at our being placed together was damped by the
seizure of all my faithful attendants except my own servant, and one
who was a Nepalese: the rest were bound, and placed in the stocks and
close confinement, charged with being Sikkim people who had no
authority to take service in Dorjiling. On the contrary they were all
registered as British subjects, and had during my travels been
recognised as such by the Rajah and all his authorities. Three times
the Soubah and others had voluntarily assured me that my person and
people were inviolate; nor was there any cause for this outrage but
the fear of their escaping with news to Dorjiling, and possibly a
feeling of irritation amongst the authorities at the failure of their
schemes. Meanwhile we were not allowed to write, and we heard that
the bag of letters which we had sent before our capture had been
seized and burnt. Campbell greatly feared that they would threaten
Dorjiling with a night attack,* [Threats of sacking Dorjiling had on
several previous occasions been made by the Dewan, to the too great
alarm of the inhabitants, who were ignorant of the timid and pacific
disposition of the Lepchas, and of the fact that there are not fifty
muskets in the country, nor twenty men able to use them. On this
occasion the threats were coupled with the report that we were
murdered, and that the Rajah had asked for 50,000 Tibetan soldiers,
who were being marched twenty-five days' journey over passes 16,000
feet high, and deep in snow, and were coming to drive the English out
of Sikkim! I need hardly observe that the Tibetans (who have
repeatedly refused to interfere on this side the snows) had no hand
in the matter, or that, supposing they could collect that number of
men in all Tibet, it would be impossible to feed them for a week,
there or in Sikkim. Such reports unfortunately spread a panic in
Dorjiling: the guards were called in from all the outposts, and the
ladies huddled into one house, whilst the males stood on the
defensive; to the great amusement of the Amlah at Tumloong, whose
insolence to us increased proportionally.] as we heard that the
Lassoo Kajee was stationed at Namtchi with a party for that purpose,
and all communication cut off, except through him.

Illustration--HORNS OF THE SHOWA STAG (_Cervus Wallichii_), A NATIVE
Length of antler, 4 feet 6 in.


Dr. Campbell is ordered to appear at Durbar -- Lamas called to
council -- Threats -- Searcity of food -- Arrival of Dewan -- Our
jailer, Thoba-sing -- Temperature, etc., at Tumloong -- Services of
Goompas -- Lepcha girl -- Jew's-harp -- Terror of servants --
Ilam-sing's family -- Interview with Dewan -- Remonstrances -- Dewan
feigns sickness -- Lord Dalhousie's letter to Rajah -- Treatment of
Indo-Chinese -- Concourse of Lamas -- Visit of Tchebu Lama -- Close
confinement -- Dr. Campbell's illness -- Conference with Amlah --
Relaxation of confinement -- Pemiongchi Lama's intercession -- Escape
of Nimbo -- Presents from Rajah, Ranee and people -- Protestations of
friendship -- Mr. Lushington sent to Dorjiling -- Leave Tumloong --
Cordial farewell -- Dewan's merchandise -- Gangtok Kajee -- Dewan's
pomp -- Governor-General's letter -- Dikkeeling -- Suspicion of
poison -- Dinner and pills -- Tobacco -- Bhotanese colony --
Katong-ghat on Teesta -- Wild lemons -- Sepoys' insolence -- Dewan
alarmed -- View of Dorjiling -- Threats of a rescue -- Fears of our
escape -- Tibet flutes -- Negotiate our release -- Arrival at
Dorjiling -- Dr. Thomson joins me -- Movement of troops at Dorjiling
-- Seizure of Rajah's Terai property.

Since his confinement, Dr. Campbell had been desired to attend the
Durbar for the purpose of transacting business, but had refused to
go, except by compulsion, considering that in the excited state of
the authorities, amongst whom there was not one person of
responsibility or judgment, his presence would not only be useless,
but he might be exposed to further insult or possibly violence.

On the 15th of November we were informed that the Dewan was on his
way from Tibet: of this we were glad, for knave as he was, we had
hitherto considered him to possess sense and understanding.
His agents were beginning to find out their mistake, and summoned to
council the principal Lamas and Kajees of the country, who, to a man,
repudiated the proceedings, and refused to attend. Our captors were
extremely anxious to induce us to write letters to Dorjiling, and
sent spies of all kinds to offer us facilities for secret
correspondence. The simplicity and clumsiness with which these
artifices were attempted would have been ludicrous under other
circumstances; while the threat of murdering Campbell only alarmed
us, inasmuch as it came from people too stupid to be trusted. We made
out that all Sikkim people were excluded from Dorjiling, and the
Amlah consequently could not conceal their anxiety to know what had
befallen their letters to government.

Meanwhile we were but scantily fed, and our imprisoned coolies got
nothing at all. Our guards, were supplied with a handful of rice or
meal as the day's allowance; they were consequently grumbling,* [The
Rajah has no standing army; not even a body-guard, and these men were
summoned to Tumloong before our arrival: they had no arms and
received no pay, but were fed when called out on duty. There is no
store for grain, no bazaar or market, in any part of the country,
each family growing little enough for its own wants and no more;
consequently Sikkim could not stand on the defensive for a week.
The Rajah receives his supply of grain in annual contributions from
the peasantry, who thus pay a rent in kind, which varies from little
to nothing, according to the year, etc. He had also property of his
own in the Terai, but the slender proceeds only enabled him to trade
with Tibet for tea, etc.] and were daily reduced in number.
The supplies of rice from the Terai, beyond Dorjiling, were cut off
by the interruption of communication, and the authorities evidently
could not hold us long at this rate: we sent up complaints, but of
course received no answer.

The Dewan arrived in the afternoon in great state; carried in an
English chair given him by Campbell some years before, habited in a
blue silk cloak lined with lambskin, and wearing an enormous straw
hat with a red tassel,  and black velvet butterflies on the flapping
brim. He was accompanied by a household of women, who were laden with
ornaments, and wore boots, and sat astride on ponies; many Lamas were
also with him, one of whom wore a broad Chinese-like hat covered with
polished copper foil. Half a dozen Sepoys with matchlocks preceded
him, and on approaching Tumloong, bawled out his titles, dignities,
etc., as was formerly the custom in England.


At Dorjiling our seizure was still unknown: our letters were brought
to us, but we were not allowed to answer them. Now that the Dewan had
arrived, we hoped to come to a speedy explanation with him, but he
shammed sickness, and sent no answer to our messages; if indeed he
received them. Our guards were reduced to one Sepoy with a knife, who
was friendly; and a dirty, cross-eyed fellow named Thoba-sing, who,
with the exception of Tchebu Lama, was the only Bhoteea about the
Durbar who could speak Hindostanee, and who did it very imperfectly:
he was our attendant and spy, the most barefaced liar I ever met
with, even in the east; and as cringing and obsequious when alone
with us, as he was to his masters on other occasions, when he never
failed to show off his authority over us in an offensive manner.
Though he was the most disagreeable fellow we were ever thrown in
contact with, I do not think that he was therefore selected, but
solely from his possessing a few words of Hindostanee, and his
presumed capability of playing the spy.

The weather was generally drizzling or rainy, and we were getting
very tired of our captivity; but I beguiled the time by carefully
keeping my meteorological register,* [During the thirty days spent at
Tumloong, the temperature was mild and equable, with much cloud and
drizzle, but little hard rain; and we experienced violent
thunder-storms, followed by transient sunshine. Unlike 1848, the
rains did not cease this year before the middle of December; nor had
there been one fine month since April. The mean temperature, computed
from 150 observations, was 50.2 degrees, and from the maximum and
minimum thermometer 49.6 degrees, which is a fair approximation to
the theoretical temperature calculated for the elevation and month,
and allows a fall of 1 degree for 320 feet of ascent. The temperature
during the spring (from 50 observations) varied during the day from
2.4 degrees to 5.8 degrees higher than that of the air, the greatest
differences occurring morning and evening. The barometric tide
amounted to 0.091 between 9.50 a.m. and 4 p.m., which is less than at
the level of the plains of India, and more than at any greater
elevation than Tumloong. The air was always damp, nearly saturated at
night, and the mean amount of humidity for ninety-eight observations
taken during the day was only 0.850, corresponding to a dew-point of
49.6 degrees, or 5.2 degrees below that of the air.] and by reducing
many of my previous observations. Each morning we were awakened at
daybreak by the prolonged echos of the conchs, trumpets, and cymbals,
beaten by the priests before the many temples in the valley: wild and
pleasing sounds, often followed by  their choral chants. After dark
we sat over the fire, generally in company with a little Lepcha girl,
who was appointed to keep us in fire-wood, and who sat watching our
movements with childish curiosity. Dolly, as we christened her, was a
quick child and a kind one, intolerably dirty, but very entertaining
from her powers of mimicry. She was fond of hearing me whistle airs,
and procured me a Tibetan Jews'-harp,* [This instrument (which is
common in Tibet) is identical with the European, except that the
tongue is produced behind the bow, in a strong steel spike, by which
the instrument is held firmer to the mouth.] with which, and coarse
tobacco, which I smoked out of a Tibetan brass pipe, I wiled away the
dark evenings, whilst my cheerful companion amused himself with an
old harmonicon, to the enchantment of Dolly and our guards
and neighbours.


The messengers from Dorjiling were kept in utter ignorance of our
confinement till their arrival at Tumloong, when they were
cross-questioned, and finally sent to us. They gradually became too
numerous, there being only one apartment for ourselves, and such of
our servants as  were not imprisoned elsewhere. Some of them were
frightened out of their senses, and the state of abject fear and
trembling in which one Limboo arrived, and continued for nearly a
week, was quite distressing* [It amounted to a complete prostration
of bodily and mental powers: the man trembled and started when spoken
to, or at any noise, a cold sweat constantly bedewed his forehead,
and he continued in this state for eight days. No kindness on
Campbell's part could rouse him to give any intelligible account of
his fears or their cause. His companions said he had lost his goroo,
_i.e.,_ his charm, which the priest gives him while yet a child, and
which he renews or gets re-sanctified as occasion requires. To us the
circumstance was extremely painful.] to every one except Dolly, who
mimicked him in a manner that was irresistibly ludicrous. Whether he
had been beaten or threatened we could not make out, nor whether he
had heard of some dark fate impending over ourselves--a suspicion
which would force itself on our minds; especially as Thoba-sing had
coolly suggested to the Amlah the dispatching of Campbell, as the
shortest way of getting out of the scrape! We were also ignorant
whether any steps were being taken at Dorjiling for our release,
which we felt satisfied must follow any active measures against these
bullying cowards, though they themselves frequently warned us that we
should be thrown into the Teesta if any such were pursued.

So long as our money lasted, we bought food, for the Durbar had none
to give; and latterly my ever charitable companion fed our guards,
including Dolly and Thoba-sing, in pity to their pinched condition.
Several families sent us small presents, especially that of the late
estimable Dewan, Ilam-sing, whose widow and daughters lived close by,
and never failed to express in secret their sympathy and good feeling.

Tchebu Lama's and Meepo's families were equally forward in their
desire to serve us; but they were marked men, and could only
communicate by stealth.

Our coolies were released on the 18th, more than half starved, but
the Sirdars were still kept in chains or the stocks: some were sent
back to Dorjiling, and the British subjects billetted off amongst the
villagers, and variously employed by the Dewan: my lad, Cheytoong,
was set to collect the long leaves of a _Tupistra,_ called
"Purphiok," which yield a sweet juice, and were chopped up and mixed
with tobacco for the Dewan's hookah.

_November 20th._--The Dewan, we heard this day, ignored all the late
proceedings, professing to be enraged with his brother and the Amlah,
and refusing to meddle in the matter. This was no doubt a pretence:
we had sent repeatedly for an explanation with himself or the Rajah,
from which he excused himself on the plea of ill-health, till this
day, when he apprized us that he would meet Campbell, and a cotton
tent was pitched for the purpose.

We went about noon, and were received with great politeness and
shaking of hands by the Dewan, the young Gangtok Kajee, and the old
monk who had been present at my examination at Phadong. Tchebu Lama's
brother was also there, as a member of the Amlah, lately taken into
favour; while Tchebu himself acted as interpreter, the Dewan speaking
only Tibetan. They all sat cross-legged on a bamboo bench on one
side, and we on chairs opposite them: walnuts and sweetmeats were
brought us, and a small present in the Rajah's name, consisting of
rice, flour, and butter.

The Dewan opened the conversation both in this and another
conference, which took place on the 22nd, by requesting Campbell to
state his reasons for having desired these interviews. Neither he nor
the Amlah seemed to have the smallest idea of the nature and
consequences of the acts they had committed, and they therefore
anxiously  sought information as to the view that would be taken of
them by the British Government. They could not see why Campbell
should not transact business with them in his present condition, and
wanted him to be the medium of communication between themselves and
Calcutta. The latter confined himself to pointing out his own views
of the following subjects:--1. The seizing and imprisoning of the
agent of a friendly power, travelling unarmed and without escort,
under the formal protection of the Rajah, and with the authority of
his own government. 2. The aggravation of this act of the Amlah, by
our present detention under the Dewan's authority. 3. The chance of
collision, and the disastrous consequences of a war, for which they
had no preparation of any kind. 4. The impossibility of the supreme
government paying any attention to their letters so long as we were
illegally detained.

All this sank deep into the Dewan's heart: he answered, "You have
spoken truth, and I will submit it all to the Rajah;" but at the same
time he urged that there was nothing dishonourable in the
imprisonment, and that the original violence being all a mistake, it
should be overlooked by both parties. We parted on good terms, and
heard shortly after the second conference that our release was
promised and arranged: when a communication* [I need scarcely say
that every step was taken at Dorjiling for our release, that the most
anxious solicitude for our safety could suggest. But the first
communication to the Rajah, though it pointed out the heinous nature
of his offence, was, through a natural fear of exasperating our
captors, couched in very moderate language. The particulars of our
seizure, and the reasons for it, and for our further detention, were
unknown at Dorjiling, or a very different line of policy would have
been pursued.] from Dorjiling changed their plans, the Dewan
conveniently fell sick on the spot, and we were thrown back again.

In the meantime, however, we were allowed to write to our friends,
and to receive money and food, of which  we stood in great need.
I transmitted a private account of the whole affair to the
Governor-General, who was unfortunately at Bombay, but to whose
prompt and vigorous measures we were finally indebted for our
release. His lordship expedited a despatch to the Rajah, such as the
latter was accustomed to receive from Nepal, Bhotan, or Lhassa, and
such as alone commands attention from these half-civilized
Indo-Chinese, who measure power by the firmness of the tone adopted
towards them; and who, whether in Sikkim, Birmah, Siam, Bhotan, or
China, have too long been accustomed to see every article of our
treaties contravened, with no worse consequences than a protest or a
threat, which is never carried into execution till some fatal step
calls forth the dormant power of the British Government.* [We forget
that all our concessions to these people are interpreted into
weakness; that they who cannot live on an amicable equality with one
another, cannot be expected to do so with us; that all our talk of
power and resources are mere boasts to habitual bullies, so long as
we do not exert ourselves in the correction of premeditated insults.
No Government can be more tolerant, more sincerely desirous of peace,
and more anxious to confine its sway within its own limits than that
of India, but it can only continue at peace by demanding respect, and
the punctilious enforcement of even the most trifling terms in the
treaties it makes with Indo-Chinese.]

The end of the month arrived without bringing any prospect of our
release, whilst we were harassed by false reports of all kinds.
The Dewan went on the 25th to a hot bath, a few hundred feet down the
hill; he was led past our hut, his burly frame tottering as if in
great weakness, but a more transparent fraud could not have been
practised: he was, in fact, lying on his oars, pending further
negotiations. The Amlah proposed that Campbell should sign a bond,
granting immunity for all past offences on their part, whilst they
were to withdraw the letter of grievances against him. The Lamas cast
horoscopes for the  future, little presents continually arrived for
us, and the Ranee sent me some tobacco, and to Campbell brown sugar
and Murwa beer. The blacksmiths, who had been ostentatiously making
long knives at the forge hard by, were dismissed; troops were said to
be arriving at Dorjiling, and a letter sternly demanding our release
bad been received.

The Lamas of Pemiongchi, Changachelling, Tassiding, etc., and the
Dewan's enemies, and Tchebu Lama's friends, began to flock from all
quarters to Tumloong, demanding audience of the Rajah, and our
instant liberation. The Dewan's game was evidently up; but the
timidity of his opponents, his own craft, and the habitual
dilatoriness of all, contributed to cause endless delays. The young
Gangtok Kajee tried to curry favour with us, sending word that he was
urging our release, and adding that he had some capital ponies for us
to see on our way to Dorjiling! Many similar trifles showed that
these people had not a conception of the nature of their position, or
of that of an officer of the British Government.

The Tchebu Lama visited us only once, and then under surveillance; he
renewed his professions of good faith, and we had every reason to
know that he had suffered severely for his adherence to us, and
consistent repudiation of the Amlah's conduct; he was in great favour
with his brother Lamas, but was not allowed to see the Rajah, who was
said to trust to him alone of all his counsellors. He told us that
peremptory orders had arrived from Calcutta for our release, but that
the Amlah had replied that they would not acknowledge the despatch,
from its not bearing the Governor-General's great seal!
The country-people refusing to be saddled with the keep of our
coolies, they were sent to Dorjiling in small parties, charged to say
that we were free, and following them.

The weather continued rainy and bad, with occasionally a few hours of
sunshine, which, however, always rendered the ditch before our door
offensive: we were still prevented leaving the hot, but as a great
annual festival was going on, we were less disagreeably watched.
Campbell was very unwell, and we had no medicine; and as the Dewan,
accustomed to such duplicity himself, naturally took this for a
_ruse,_ and refused to allow us to send to Dorjiling for any, we were
more than ever convinced that his own sickness was simulated.

On the 2nd and 3rd December we had further conferences with the
Dewan, who said that we were to be taken to Dorjiling in six days,
with two Vakeels from the Rajah. The Pemiongchi Lama, as the oldest
and most venerated in Sikkim, attended, and addressed Campbell in a
speech of great feeling and truth. Having heard, he said, of these
unfortunate circumstances a few days ago, he had come on feeble
limbs, and though upwards of seventy winters old, as the
representative of his holy brotherhood, to tender advice to his
Rajah, which he hoped would be followed: Since Sikkim had been
connected with the British rule, it had experienced continued peace
and protection; whereas before they were in constant dread of their
lives and properties, which, as well as their most sacred temples,
were violated by the Nepalese and Bhotanese. He then dwelt upon
Campbell's invariable kindness and good feeling, and his exertions
for the benefit of their country, and for the cementing of
friendship, and hoped he would not let these untoward events induce
an opposite course in future but that he would continue to exert his
influence with the Governor-General in their favour.

The Dewan listened attentively; he was anxious and  perplexed, and
evidently losing his presence of mind: he talked to us of Lhassa and
its gaieties, dromedaries, Lamas, and everything Tibetan; offered to
sell us ponies cheap, and altogether behaved in a most, undignified
manner; ever and anon calling attention to his pretended sick leg,
which he nursed on his knee. He gave us the acceptable news that the
government at Calcutta had sent up an officer to carry on Campbell's
duties, which had alarmed him exceedingly. The Rajah, we were told,
was very angry at our seizure and detention; he had no fault to find
with the Governor-General's agent, and hoped he would be continued as
such. In fact, all the blame was thrown on the brothers of the Dewan,
and of the Gangtok Kajee, and more irresponsible stupid boors could
not have been found on whom to lay it, or who would have felt less
inclined to commit such folly if it had not been put on them by the
Dewan. On leaving, white silk scarfs were thrown over our shoulders,
and we went away, still doubtful, after so many disappointments,
whether we should really be set at liberty at the stated period.

Although there was so much talk about our leaving, our confinement
continued as rigorous as ever. The Dewan curried favour in every
other way, sending us Tibetan wares for purchase, with absurd prices
attached, he being an arrant pedlar. All the principal families
waited on us, desiring peace and friendship. The coolies who had not
been dismissed were allowed to run away, except my Bhotan Sirdar,
Nimbo, against whom the Dewan was inveterate;* [The Sikkim people are
always at issue with the Bhotanese. Nimbo was a runaway slave of the
latter country, who had been received into Sikkim, and retained there
until he took up his quarters at Dorjiling.] he, however, managed
soon afterwards to break a great chain with which his legs were
shackled, and  marching at night, eluded a hot pursuit, and proceeded
to the Teesta, swam the river, and reached Dorjiling in eight days;
arriving with a large iron ring on each leg, and a link of several
pounds weight attached to one.

Parting presents arrived from the Rajah on the 7th, consisting of
ponies, cloths, silks, woollens, immense squares of butter, tea, and
the usual et ceteras, to the utter impoverishment of his stores:
these he offered to the two Sahibs, "in token of his amity with the
British government, his desire for peace, and deprecation of angry
discussions." The Ranee sent silk purses, fans, and such Tibetan
paraphernalia, with an equally amicable message, that "she was most
anxious to avert the consequences of whatever complaints had gone
forth against Dr. Campbell, who might depend on her strenuous
exertions to persuade the Rajah to do whatever he wished!"
These friendly messages were probably evoked by the information that
an English regiment, with three guns, was on its way to Sikkim, and
that 300 of the Bhaugulpore Rangers had already arrived there.
The government of Bengal sending another agent* [Mr. Lushington, the
gentleman sent to conduct Sikkim affairs during Dr. Campbell's
detention: to whom I shall ever feel grateful for his activity in our
cause, and his unremitting attention to every little arrangement that
could alleviate the discomforts and anxieties of our position.] to
Dorjiling, was also a contingency they had not anticipated, having
fully expected to get rid of any such obstacle to direct
communication with the Governor-General.

A present from the whole population followed that of the Ranee,
coupled with earnest entreaties that Campbell would resume his
position at Dorjiling; and on the following day forty coolies
mustered to arrange the baggage. Before we left, the Ranee sent three
rupees to buy a  yard of chale and some gloves, accompanying them
with a present of white silk, etc., for Mrs. Campbell, to whom the
commission was intrusted: a singular instance of the _insouciant_
simplicity of these odd people.

The 9th of December was a splendid and hot day, one of the very few
we had had during our captivity. We left at noon, descending the hill
through an enormous crowd of people, who brought farewell presents,
all wishing us well. We were still under escort as prisoners of the
Dewan, who was coolly marching a troop of forty unloaded mules and
ponies, and double that number of men's loads of merchandize,
purchased during the summer in Tibet, to trade with at Dorjiling and
the Titalya fair! His impudence or stupidity was thus quite
inexplicable; treating us as prisoners, ignoring every demand of the
authorities at Dorjiling, of the Supreme Council of Calcutta, and of
the Governor-General himself; and at the same time acting as if he
were to enter the British territories on the most friendly and
advantageous footing for himself and his property, and incurring so
great an expense in all this as to prove that he was in earnest in
thinking so.

Tchebu Lama accompanied us, but we were not allowed to converse with
him. We halted at the bottom of the valley, where the Dewan invited
us to partake of tea; from this place he gave us mules* [The Tibet
mules are often as fine as the Spanish: I rode one which had
performed a journey from Choombi to Lhassa in fifteen days, with a
man and load.] or ponies to ride, and we ascended to Yankoong, a
village 3,867 feet above the sea. On the following day we crossed a
high ridge from the Ryott valley to that of the Rungmi; where we
camped at Tikbotang (alt. 3,763 feet), and, on the 11th at Gangtok
Sampoo, a few miles lower down the same valley.

We were now in the Soubahship of the Gangtok Kajee; a  member of the
oldest and most wealthy family in Sikkim; he had from the first
repudiated the late acts of the Amlah, in which his brother had taken
part, and had always been hostile to the Dewan. The latter conducted
himself with disagreeable familiarity towards us, and _hauteur_
towards the people; he was preceded by immense kettle-drums, carried
on men's backs, and great hand-bells, which were beaten and rung on
approaching villages; on which occasions he changed his dress of
sky-blue for yellow silk robes worked with Chinese dragons, to the
indignation of Tchebu Lama, an amber robe in polite Tibetan society
being sacred to royalty and the Lamas. We everywhere perceived
unequivocal symptoms of the dislike with which he was regarded.
Cattle were driven away, villages deserted, and no one came to pay
respects, or bring presents, except the Kajees, who were ordered to
attend, and his elder brother, for whom he had usurped an estate
near Gangtok.

On the 13th, he marched us a few miles, and then halted for a day at
Serriomsa (alt. 2,820 feet), at the bottom of a hot valley full of
irrigated rice-crops and plantain and orange-groves. Here the Gangtok
Kajee waited on us with a handsome present, and informed us privately
of his cordial hatred of the "upstart Dewan," and hopes for his
overthrow; a demonstration of which we took no notice.* [Nothing
would have been easier than for the Gangtok Kajee, or any other
respectable man in Sikkim, to have overthrown the Dewan and his
party; but these people are intolerably apathetic, and prefer being
tyrannized over to the trouble of shaking off the yoke.] The Dewan's
brother (one of the Amlah) also sent a large present, but was ashamed
to appear. Another letter reached the Dewan here, directed to the
Rajah; it was from the Governor-General at Bombay, and had been sent
across the country by special messengers:  it demanded our instant
release, or his Raj would be forfeited; and declared that if a hair
of our heads were touched, his life should be the penalty.

The Rajah was also incessantly urging the Dewan to hasten us onwards
as free men to Dorjiling, but the latter took all remonstrances with
assumed coolness, exercised his ponies, played at bow and arrow,
intruded on us at mealtimes to be invited to partake, and loitered on
the road, changing garments and hats, which he pestered us to buy.
Nevertheless, be was evidently becoming daily more nervous
and agitated.

From the Rungmi valley we crossed on the 14th southward to that of
Runniok, and descended to Dikkeeling, a large village of Dhurma
Bhoteeas (Bhotanese), which is much the most populous, industrious,
and at the same time turbulent, in Sikkim. It is 4,950 feet above the
sea, and occupies many broad cultivated spurs facing the south.
This district once belonged to Bhotan, and was ceded to the Sikkim
Rajah by the Paro Pilo,* [The temporal sovereign, in
contra-distinction to the Dhurma Rajah, or spiritual sovereign of
Bhotan.] in consideration of some military services, rendered by the
former in driving off the Tibetans, who had usurped it for the
authorities of Lhassa. Since then the Sikkim and Bhotan people have
repeatedly fallen out, and Dikkeeling has become a refuge for runaway
Bhotanese, and kidnapping is constantly practised on this frontier.

The Dewan halted us here for three days, for no assigned cause.
On the 16th, letters arrived, including a most kind and encouraging
one from Mr. Lushington, who had taken charge of Campbell's office at
Dorjiling. Immediately after arriving, the messenger was seized with
violent vomitings and gripings: we could not help suspecting poison,
especially as we were now amongst adherents of the Dewan, and the
Bhotanese are notorious for this crime. Only one means suggested
itself for proving this, and with Campbell's permission I sent my
compliments to the Dewan, with a request for one of his hunting dogs
to eat the vomit. It was sent at once, and performed its duty without
any ill effects. I must confess to having felt a malicious pleasure
in the opportunity thus afforded of showing our jailor how little we
trusted him; feeling indignant at the idea that he should suppose he
was making any way in our good opinion by his familiarities, which we
were not in circumstances to resist.

The crafty fellow, however, outwitted me by inviting us to dine with
him the same day, and putting our stomachs and noses to a severe
test. Our dinner was served in Chinese fashion, but most of the
luxuries, such as _beche-de-mer,_ were very old and bad. We ate,
sometimes with chop-sticks, and at others with Tibetan spoons,
knives, and two-pronged forks. After the usual amount of messes
served in oil and salt water, sweets were brought, and a strong
spirit. Thoba-sing, our filthy, cross-eyed spy, was waiter, and
brought in every little dish with both hands, and raised it to his
greasy forehead, making a sort of half bow previous to depositing it
before us. Sometimes he undertook to praise its contents, always
adding, that in Tibet none but very great men indeed partook of such
sumptuous fare. Thus he tried to please both us and the Dewan, who
conducted himself with pompous hospitality, showing off what he
considered his elegant manners and graces. Our blood boiled within us
at being so patronised by the squinting ruffian, whose insolence and
ill-will had sorely aggravated the discomforts of our imprisonment.

Not content with giving us what he considered a magnificent dinner
(and it had cost him some trouble), the  Dewan produced a little bag
from a double-locked escritoire, and took out three dinner-pills,
which he had received as a great favour from the Rimbochay Lama, and
which were a sovereign remedy for indigestion and all other ailments;
he handed one to each of us, reserving the third for himself.
Campbell refused his; but there appeared no help for me, after my
groundless suspicion of poison, and so I swallowed the pill with the
best grace I could. But in truth, it was not poison I dreaded in its
contents, so much as being compounded of some very questionable
materials, such as the Rimbochay Lama blesses and dispenses far and
wide. To swallow such is a sanctifying work, according to Boodhist
superstition, and I believe there was nothing in the world, save his
ponies, to which the Dewan attached a greater value.

To wind up the feast, we had pipes of excellent mild yellow Chinese
tobacco called "Tseang," made from _Nicotiana rustica,_ which is
cultivated in East Tibet, and in West China according to MM. Huc and
Gabet. It resembles in flavour the finest Syrian tobacco, and is most
agreeable when the smoke is passed through the nose. The common
tobacco of India (_Nicotiana Tabacum_) is much imported into Tibet,
where it is called "Tamma," (probably a corruption of the Persian
"Toombac,") and is said to fetch the enormous price of 30 shllings
per lb. at Lhassa, which is sixty times its value in India. Rice at
Lhassa, when cheap, sells at 2 shillings for 5 lbs.; it is, as I have
elsewhere said, all bought up for rations for the Chinese soldiery.

The Bhotanese are more industrious than the Lepchas, and better
husbandmen; besides having superior crops of all ordinary grains,
they grow cotton, hemp, and flax. The cotton is cleansed here as
elsewhere, with a simple gin. The Lepchas use no spinning wheel, but
a spindle and  distaff; their loom, which is Tibetan is a very
complicated one framed of bamboo; it is worked by hand, without beam
treddle, or shuttle.

On the 18th we were marched, three miles only, to Singdong (alt.
2,116 feet), and on the following day five miles farther, to Katong
Ghat (alt. 750 feet), on the Teesta river, which we crossed with
rafts, and camped on the opposite bank, a few miles above the
junction of this river with the Great Rungeet. The water, which is
sea-green in colour, had a temperature of 53.5 degrees at 4 p.m.,
and 51.7 degrees the following morning; its current was very
powerful. The rocks, since leaving Tunlloong, had been generally
micaceous, striking north-west, and dipping north-east. The climate
was hot, and the vegetation on the banks tropical; on the hills
around, lemon-bushes ("Kucheala," Lepcha) were abundant, growing
apparently wild.

The Dewan was now getting into a very nervous and depressed state; he
was determined to keep up appearances before his followers, but was
himself almost servile to us; he caused his men to make a parade of
their arms, as if to intimidate us, and in descending narrow gullies
we had several times the disagreeable surprise of finding some of his
men at a sudden turn, with drawn bows and arrows pointed towards us.
Others gesticulated with their long knives, and made fell swoops at
soft plantain-stems; but these artifices were all as shallow as they
were contemptible, and a smile at such demonstrations was generally
answered with another from the actors.

From Katong we ascended the steep east flank of Tendong or Mount
Ararat, through forests of Sal and long-leaved pine, to Namten (alt.
4,483 feet), where we again halted two days. The Dingpun Tinli lived
near and  waited on us with a present, which, with all others that
had been brought, Campbell received officially, and transferred to
the authorities at Dorjiling.

The Dewan was thoroughly alarmed at the news here brought in, that
the Rajah's present of yaks, ponies, etc., which had been sent
forward, had been refused at Dorjiling; and equally so at the
clamorous messages which reached him from all quarters, demanding our
liberation; and at the desertion of some of his followers, on hearing
that large bodies of troops were assembling at Dorjiling. Repudiated
by his Rajah and countrymen, and paralysed between his dignity and
his ponies, which he now perceived would not be welcomed at the
station, and which were daily losing flesh, looks, and value in these
hot valleys, where there is no grass pasture, he knew not what
olive-branch to hold out to our government, except ourselves, whom he
therefore clung to as hostages.

On the 22nd of December he marched us eight miles further, to
Cheadam, on a bold spur 4,653 feet high, overlooking the Great
Rungeet, and facing Dorjiling, from which it was only twenty miles
distant. The white bungalows of our friends gladdened our eyes, while
the new barracks erecting for the daily arriving troops struck terror
into the Dewan's heart. The six Sepoys* [These Sepoys, besides the
loose red jacket and striped Lepcha kirtle, wore a very curious
national black hat of felt, with broad flaps turned up all round:
this is represented in the right-hand figure. A somewhat similar bat
is worn by some classes of Nepal soldiery.] who had marched valiantly
beside us for twenty days, carrying the muskets given to the Rajah
the year before by the Governor-General, now lowered their arms, and
vowed that if a red coat crossed the Great Rungeet, they would throw
down their guns and run away. News arrived  that the Bhotan
inhabitants of Dorjiling headed by my bold Sirdar Nimbo, had arranged
a night attack for our release; an enterprise to which they were
quite equal, and in which they have had plenty of practice in their
own misgoverned country. Watch-fires gleamed amongst the bushes, we
were thrust into a doubly-guarded house, and bows and arrows were
ostentatiously levelled so as to rake the doorway, should we attempt
to escape. Some of the ponies were sent back to Dikkeeling, though
the Dewan still clung to his merchandise and the feeble hope of
traffic. The confusion increased daily, but though Tchebu Lama looked
brisk and confident, we were extremely anxious;  scouts were hourly
arriving from the road to the Great Rungeet, and if our troops had
advanced, the Dewan might have made away with us from pure fear.


In the forenoon he paid us a long visit, and brought some flutes, of
which he gave me two very common ones of apricot wood from Lhassa,
producing at the same time a beautiful one, which I believe he
intended for Campbell, but his avarice got the better, and he
commuted his gift into the offer of a tune, and pitching it in a high
key, he went through a Tibetan air that almost deafened us by its
screech. He tried bravely to maintain his equanimity, but as we
preserved a frigid civility and only spoke when addressed, the tears
would start from his eyes in the pauses of conversation. In the
evening he came again; he was excessively agitated and covered with
perspiration, and thrust himself unceremoniously between us on the
bench we occupied. As his familiarity increased, he put his arm round
my neck, and as he was armed with a small dagger, I felt rather
uneasy about his intentions, but he ended by forcing on my acceptance
a coin, value threepence, for he was in fact beside himself
with terror.

Next morning Campbell received a hint that this was a good
opportunity for a vigorous remonstrance. The Dewan came with Tchebu
Lama, his own younger brother (who was his pony driver), and the
Lassoo Kajee. The latter had for two months placed himself in an
attitude of hostility opposite Dorjiling, with a ragged company of
followers, but he now sought peace and friendship as much as the
Dewan; the latter told us he was waiting for a reply to a letter
addressed to Mr. Lushington, after which he would set us free.
Campbell said: "As you appear to have made up your mind, why not
dismiss us at once?" He  answered that we should go the next day at
all events: Here I came in, and on hearing from Campbell what had
passed, I added, that he had better for his own sake let us go at
once; that the next day was our great and only annual Poojah
(religious festival) of Christmas, when we all met; whereas he and
his countrymen had dozens in the year. As for me, he knew I had no
wife, nor children, nor any relation, within thousands of miles, and
it mattered little where I was, he was only bringing ruin on himself
by his conduct to me as the Governor-General's friend; but as
regarded Campbell, the case was different; his home was at Dorjiling,
which was swarming with English soldiers, all in a state of
exasperation, and if he did not let us depart before Christmas, he
would find Dorjiling too hot to hold him, let him offer what
reparation he might for the injuries he had done us. I added: "We are
all ready to go--dismiss us." The Dewan again turned to Campbell, who
said, "I am quite ready; order us ponies at once, and send our
luggage after us." He then ordered the ponies, and three men,
including Meepo, to attend us; whereupon we walked out, mounted, and
made off with all speed.

We arrived at the cane bridge over the Great Rungeet at 4 p.m., and
to our chagrin found it in the possession of a posse of ragged
Bhoteeas, though there were thirty armed Sepoys of our own at the
guard-house above. At Meepo's order they cut the network of fine
canes by which they had rendered the bridge impassable, and we
crossed. The Sepoys at the guard-house turned out with their clashing
arms and bright accoutrements, and saluted to the sound of bugles;
scaring our three companions, who ran back as fast as they could go.
We rode up that night to Dorjiling, and I arrived at 8 p.m. at
Hodgson's house,  where I was taken for a ghost, and received with
shouts of welcome by my kind friend and his guest Dr. Thomson, who
had been awaiting my arrival for upwards of a month.

Thus terminated our Sikkim captivity, and my last Himalayan exploring
journey, which in a geographical point of view had answered my
purposes beyond my most sanguine expectations, though my collections
had been in a great measure destroyed by so many untoward events.
It enabled me to survey the whole country, and to execute a map of
it, and Campbell had further gained that knowledge of its resources
which the British government should all along have possessed, as the
protector of the Rajah and his territories.

It remains to say a few words of the events that succeeded our
release, in so far as they relate to my connection with them.
The Dewan moved from Cheadam to Namtchi, immediately opposite
Dorjiling, where he remained throughout the winter. The supreme
government of Bengal demanded of the Rajah that he should deliver up
the most notorious offenders, and come himself to Dorjiling, on pain
of an army marching to Tumloong to enforce the demand; a step which
would have been easy, as there were neither troops, arms, ammunition,
nor other means of resistance, even had there been the inclination to
stop us, which was not the case. The Rajah would in all probability
have delivered himself up at Tumloong, throwing himself on our mercy,
and the army would have sought the culprits in vain, both the spirit
and the power to capture them being wanting on the part of the people
and their ruler.

The Rajah expressed his willingness, but pleaded his inability to
fulfil the demand, whereupon the threat was  repeated, and additional
reinforcements were moved on to Dorjiling. The general officer in
command at Dinapore was ordered to Dorjiling to conduct operations:
his skill and bravery had been proved during the progress of the
Nepal war so long ago as 1815. From the appearance of the country
about Dorjiling, he was led to consider Sikkim to be impracticable
for a British army. This was partly owing to the forest-clad
mountains, and partly to the fear of Tibetan troops coming to the
Rajah's aid, and the Nepalese* [Jung Bahadoor was at this time
planning his visit to England, and to his honour I must say, that on
hearing of our imprisonment he offered to the government at Calcutta
to release us with a handful of men. This he would no doubt have
easily effected, but his offer was wisely declined, for the Nepalese
(as I have elsewhere stated) want Sikkim and Bhotan too, and we had
undertaken the protection of the former country, mainly to keep the
Nepalese out of it.] taking the opportunity to attack us. With the
latter we were in profound peace, and we had a resident at their
court; and I have elsewhere shown the impossibility of a Tibet
invasion, even if the Chinese or Lhassan authorities were inclined to
interfere in the affairs of Sikkim, which they long ago formally
declined doing in the case of aggressions of the Nepalese and
Bhotanese, the Sikkim Rajah being under British protection.* [The
general officer considered that our troops would have been cut to
pieces if they entered the country; and the late General Sir Charles
Napier has since given evidence to the same effect. Having been
officially asked at the time whether I would guide a party into the
country, and having drawn up (at the request of the general officer)
plans for the purpose, and having given it as my opinion that it
would not only have been feasible but easy to have marched a force in
peace and safety to Tumloong, I feel it incumbent on me here to
remark, that I think General Napier, who never was in Sikkim, and
wrote from many hundred miles' distance, must have misapprehended the
state of the case. Whether an invasion of Sikkim was either advisable
or called for, was a matter in which I had no concern: nor do I offer
an opinion as to the impregnability of the country if it were
defended by natives otherwise a match for a British force, and having
the advantage of position. I was not consulted with reference to any
difference of opinion between the civil and military powers, such as
seems to have called for the expression of Sir Charles Napier's
opinion on this matter, and which appears to be considerably
overrated in his evidence.

The general officer honoured me with his friendship at Dorjiling, and
to Mr. Lushington, I am, as I have elsewhere stated, under great
obligations for his personal consideration and kindness, and vigorous
measures during my detention. On my release and return to Dorjiling,
any interference on my part would have been meddling with what was
not my concern. I never saw, nor wished to see, a public document
connected with the affair, and have only given as many of the leading
features of the case as I can vouch for, and as were accessible to
any other bystander.]

There were not wanting offers of leading a company of soldiers to
Tumloong, rather than that the threat should have twice been made,
and then withdrawn; but they were not accepted. A large body of
troops was however, marched from Dorjiling, and encamped on the north
bank of the Great Rungeet for some weeks: but after that period they
were recalled, without any further demonstration; the Dewan remaining
encamped the while on the Namtchi hill, not three hours' march above
them. The simple Lepchas daily brought our soldiers milk, fowls, and
eggs, and would have continued to do so had they proceeded to
Tumloong, for I believe both Rajah and people would have rejoiced at
our occupation of the country.

After the withdrawal of the troops, the threat was modified into a
seizure of the Terai lands, which the Rajah had originally received
as a free gift from the British, and which were the only lucrative or
fertile estates he possessed. This was effected by four policemen
taking possession of the treasury (which contained exactly twelve
shillings, I believe), and announcing to the villagers the
confiscation of the territory to the British government, in which
they gladly acquiesced. At the same time there was annexed to it the
whole southern part of Sikkim, between the Great Rungeet and the
plains of India, and from Nepal on the west to the Bhotan frontier
and the Teesta river on the east; thus confining the Rajah to his
mountains, and cutting off all access to the plains, except through
the British territories. To the inhabitants (about 5000 souls) this
was a matter of congratulation, for it only involved the payment of a
small fixed tax in money to the treasury at Dorjiling, instead of a
fluctuating one in kind, with service to the Rajah, besides exempting
them from further annoyance by the Dewan. At the present time the
revenues of the tract thus acquired have doubled, and will very soon
be quadrupled: every expense of our detention and of the moving of
troops, etc., has been already repaid by it, and for the future all
will be clear profit; and I am given to understand that this last
year it has realized upwards of 30,000 rupees (3000 pounds).

Dr. Campbell resumed his duties immediately afterwards, and the
newly-acquired districts were placed under his jurisdiction. The
Rajah still begs hard for the renewal of old friendship, and the
restoration of his Terai land, or the annual grant of 300 pounds a
year which he formerly received. He has forbidden the culprits his
court, but can do no more. The Dewan, disgraced and turned out of
office, is reduced to poverty, and is deterred from entering Tibet by
the threat of being dragged to Lhassa with a rope round his neck.
Considering, however, his energy, a rare quality in these countries,
I should not be surprised at his yet cutting a figure in Bhotan, if
not in Sikkim itself: especially if, at the Rajah's death, the
British government should refuse to take the country under its
protection. The Singtam Soubah and the other culprits live disgraced
at their homes. Tchebu Lama has received a handsome reward, and a
grant of land at Dorjiling, where he resides, and whence he sends me
his salaams by every opportunity.


Leave Dorjiling for Calcutta -- Jung Bahadoor -- Dr. Falconer --
Improvements in Botanic Gardens -- Palmetum -- Victoria --
_Amherstia_ -- Orchids spread by seed -- Banyan -- _Cycas_ --
Importation of American plants in ice -- Return to Dorjiling -- Leave
with Dr. Thomson for the Khasia mountains -- Mahanuddy river --
Vegetation of banks -- Maldah -- Alligators -- Rampore-Bauleah --
Climate of Ganges -- Pubna -- Jummul river -- Altered course of
Burrampooter and Megna -- Dacca -- Conch shells -- Saws -- Cotton
muslins -- Fruit -- Vegetation -- Elevation -- Rose of Bengal --
Burrampooter -- Delta of Soormah river -- Jheels -- Soil --
Vegetation -- Navigation -- Mosquitos -- Atmospheric pressure --
Effects of geological changes -- Imbedding of plants -- Teelas or
islets -- Chattuc -- Salubrious climate -- Rains -- Canoes -- Pundua
-- Mr. Harry Inglis -- Terrya Ghat -- Ascent to Churra -- Scenery and
vegetation at foot of mountains -- Cascades.

I was chiefly occupied during January and February of 1850, in
arranging and transmitting my collections to Calcutta, and completing
my manuscripts, maps, and surveys. My friend Dr. Thomson having
joined me here, for the purpose of our spending a year in travelling
and botanising together, it became necessary to decide on the best
field for our pursuits. Bhotan offered the most novelty, but it was
inaccessible to Europeans; and we therefore turned our thoughts to
Nepal, and failing that, to the Khasia mountains.

The better to expedite our arrangements, I made a trip to Calcutta in
March, where I expected to meet both Lord Dalhousie, on his return
from the Straits of Malacca, and Jung Bahadoor (the Nepalese
minister), who was then _en route_ as envoy to England. I staid at
Government House, where every assistance was afforded me towards
obtaining the Nepal Rajah's permission to proceed through the
Himalaya from Dorjiling to Katmandu. Jung Bahadoor received me with
much courtesy, and expressed his great desire to serve me; but begged
me to wait until his return from England, as he could not be
answerable for my personal safety when travelling during his absence;
and he REferred to the permission he had formerly given me (and such
was never before accorded to any European) in earnest of his
disposition, which was unaltered. We therefore determined upon
spending the season of 1850 in the Khasia mountains in eastern
Bengal, at the head of the great delta of the Ganges and Burrampooter.


I devoted a few days to the Calcutta Botanic Gardens, where I found
my kind friend Dr. Falconer established, and very busy.
The destruction of most of the palms, and of all the noble tropical
features of the gardens, during Dr. Griffith's incumbency, had
necessitated the replanting of the greater part of the grounds, the
obliteration of old walks, and the construction of new: it was also
necessary to fill up tanks whose waters, by injudicious cuttings,
were destroying some of the most valuable parts of the land, to drain
many acres, and to raise embankments to prevent the encroachments of
the Hoogly: the latter being a work attended with great expense, now
cripples the resources of the garden library, and other valuable
adjuncts; for the trees which were planted for the purpose having
been felled and sold, it became necessary to buy timber at an
exorbitant price.

The avenue of Cycas trees (_Cycas circinalis_), once the admiration
of all visitors, and which for beauty and singularity was unmatched
in any tropical garden, had been swept away by the same unsparing
hand which had destroyed the teak, mahogany, clove, nutmeg, and
cinnamon groves. In 1847, when I first visited the establishment,
nothing was to be seen of its former beauty and grandeur, but a few
noble trees or graceful palms rearing their heads over a low ragged
jungle, or spreading their broad leaves or naked limbs over the
forlorn hope of a botanical garden, that consisted of open clay beds,
disposed in concentric circles, and baking into brick under the
fervid heat of a Bengal sun.

The rapidity of growth is so great in this climate, that within eight
months from the commencement of the improvements, a great change had
already taken place. The grounds bore a park-like appearance; broad
shady walks had replaced the narrow winding paths that ran in
distorted lines over the ground, and a large Palmetum, or collection
of tall and graceful palms of various kinds, occupied several acres
at one side of the garden; whilst a still larger portion of ground
was being appropriated to a picturesque assemblage of certain closely
allied families of plants, whose association promised to form a novel
and attractive object of study to the botanist, painter, and
landscape gardener. This, which the learned Director called in
scientific language a Thamno-Endogenarium, consists of groups of all
kinds of bamboos, tufted growing palms, rattan canes (_Calami_),
_Dracaenae,_ plantains, screw-pines, (_Pandani_, and such genera of
tropical monocotyledonous plants. All are evergreens of most vivid
hue, some of which, having slender trailing stems, form magnificent
masses; others twine round one another, and present impenetrable
hillocks of green foliage; whilst still others shoot out broad long
wavy leaves from tufted roots; and a fourth class is supported by
aerial roots, diverging on all sides and from all heights on the
stems, every branch of which is crowned with an enormous plume of
grass-like leaves.* [Since I left India, these improvements have been
still further carried out, and now (in the spring of 1853) I read of
five splendid _Victoria_ plants flowering at once, with _Euryale
ferox,_ white, blue, and red water-lilies, and white, yellow and
scarlet lotus, rendering the tanks gorgeous, sunk as their waters are
in frames of green grass, ornamented with clumps of _Nipa fruticans_
and _Phoenix paludosa._]

The great _Amherstia_ tree had been nearly killed by injudicious
treatment, and the baking of the soil above its roots. This defect
was remedied by sinking bamboo pipes four feet and a half in the
earth, and watering through them--a plan first recommended by Major
M`Farlane of Tavoy. Some fine _Orchideae_ were in flower in the,
gardens, but few of them fruit; and those _Dendrobiums_ which bear
axillary viviparous buds never do. Some of the orchids appear to be
spread by birds amongst the trees; but the different species of
_Vanda_ are increasing so fast, that there seems no doubt that this
tribe of air-plants grows freely from seed in a wild state, though we
generally fail to rear them in England.

The great Banyan tree (_Ficus Indica_) is still the pride and
ornament of the garden. Dr. Falconer has ascertained satisfactorily
that it is only seventy-five years old: annual rings, size, etc.,
afford no evidence in such a case, but people were alive a few years
ago who remembered well its site being occupied in 1782 by a Kujoor
(Date-palm), out of whose crown the Banyan sprouted, and beneath
which a Fakir sat. It is a remarkable fact that the banyan hardly
ever vegetates on the ground; but its figs are eaten by birds, and
the seeds deposited in the crowns of palms, where they grow, sending
down roots that embrace and eventually kill the palm, which decays
away. This tree is now eighty feet high, and throws an area 300 feet*
[Had this tree been growing in 1849 over the great palm-stove at Kew,
only thirty feet of each end of that vast structure would have been
uncovered: its increase was proceeding so rapidly, that by this time
it could probably cover the whole. Larger banyans are common in
Bengal; but few are so symmetrical in shape and height. As the tree
gets old, it breaks up into separate masses, the original trunk
decaying, and the props becoming separate trunks of the different
portions.] in diameter into a dark, cool shade. The gigantic limbs
spread out about ten feet above the ground, and from neglect during
Dr. Wallich's absence, there were on Dr. Falconer's arrival no more
than eighty-nine descending roots or props; there are now several
hundreds, and the growth of this grand mass of vegetation is
proportionably stimulated and increased. The props are induced to
sprout by wet clay and moss tied to the branches, beneath which a
little pot of water is hung, and after they have made some progress,
they are inclosed in bamboo tubes, and so coaxed down to the ground.
They are mere slender whip-cords before reaching the earth, where
they root, remaining very lax for several months; but gradually, as
they grow and swell to the size of cables, they tighten, and
eventually become very tense. This is a curious phenomenon, and so
rapid, that it appears to be due to the rooting part mechanically
dragging down the aerial. The branch meanwhile continues to grow
outwards, and being supplied by its new support, thickens beyond it,
whence the props always slant outwards from the ground towards the
circumference of the tree.

_Cycas_ trees abound in the gardens, and, though generally having
only one, or rarely two crowns, they have sometimes sixteen, and
their stems are everywhere covered with leafy buds, which are
developed on any check being given to the growth of the plant, as by
the operation of transplantation, which will cause as many as 300
buds to appear in the course of a few years, on a trunk eight
feet high.

During my stay at the gardens, Dr. Falconer received a box of living
plants packed in moss, and transported in a frozen state by one of
the ice ships from North America:* [The ice from these ships is sold
in the Calcutta market for a penny a pound, to great profit; it has
already proved an invaluable remedy in cases of inflammation and
fever, and has diminished mortality to a very appreciable extent.]
they left in November, and arriving in March, I was present at the
opening of the boxes, and saw 391 plants (the whole contents) taken
out in the most perfect state. They were chiefly fruit-trees, apples,
pears, peaches, currants, and gooseberries, with beautiful plants of
the Venus' fly-trap (_Dionaea muscipula_). More perfect success never
attended an experiment: the plants were in vigorous bud, and the day
after being released from their icy bonds, the leaves sprouted and
unfolded, and they were packed in Ward's cases for immediate
transport to the Himalaya mountains.

My visit to Calcutta enabled me to compare my instruments with the
standards at the Observatory, in which I was assisted by my friend,
Capt. Thuillier, to whose kind offices on this and many other
occasions I am greatly indebted.

I returned to Dorjiling on the 17th of April, and Dr. Thomson and I
commenced our arrangements for proceeding to the Khasia mountains.
We started on the 1st of May, and I bade adieu to Dorjiling with no
light heart; for I was leaving the kindest and most disinterested
friends I had ever made in a foreign land, and a country whose
mountains, forests, productions, and people had all become endeared
to me by many ties and associations. The prospects of Dorjiling
itself are neither doubtful nor insignificant. Whether or not Sikkim
will fall again under the protection of Britain, the station must
prosper, and that very speedily. I had seen both its native
population and its European houses doubled in two years; its
salubrious climate, its scenery, and accessibility, ensure it so
rapid a further increase that it will become the most populous
hill-station in India. Strong prejudices against a damp climate, and
the complaints of loungers and idlers who only seek pleasure,
together with a groundless fear of the natives, have hitherto
retarded its progress; but its natural advantages will outweigh these
and all other obstacles.

I am aware that my opinion of the ultimate success of Dorjiling is
not shared by the general public of India, and must be pardoned for
considering their views in this matter short-sighted. With regard to
the disagreeables of its climate, I can sufficiently appreciate them,
and shall be considered by the residents to have over-estimated the
amount and constancy of mist, rain, and humidity, from the two
seasons I spent there being exceptional in these respects. Whilst on
the one hand I am willing to admit the probability of this,* [I am
informed that hardly a shower of rain has fallen this season, between
November 1852, and April 1853; and a very little snow in February
only.] I may be allowed on the other to say that I have never visited
any spot under the sun, where I was not told that the season was
exceptional, and generally for the worse; added to which there is no
better and equally salubrious climate east of Nepal, accessible
from Calcutta.

All climates are comparative, and fixed residents naturally praise
their own. I have visited many latitudes, and can truly say that I
have found no two climates resembling each other, and that all alike
are complained of. That of Dorjiling is above the average in point of
comfort, and for perfect salubrity rivals any; while in variety,
interest, and grandeur, the scenery is unequalled.

From Sikkim to the Khasia mountains our course was by boat down the
Mahanuddy to the upper Gangetic delta, whose many branches we
followed eastwards to the Megna; whence we ascended the Soormah to
the Silhet district. We arrived at Kishengunj, on the Mahanuddy, on
the 3rd of May, and were delayed two days for our boat, which should
have been waiting here to take us to Berhampore on the Ganges: we
were, however, hospitably received by Mr. Perry's family.

The approach of the rains was indicated by violent easterly storms of
thunder, lightning, and rain; the thermometer ranging from 70 degrees
 to 85 degrees. The country around Kishengunj is flat and very
barren; it is composed of a deep sandy soil, covered with a short
turf, now swarming with cockchafers. Water is found ten or twelve
feet below the surface, and may be supplied by underground streams
from the Himalaya, distant forty-five miles. The river, which at this
season is low, may be navigated up to Titalya during the rains; its
bed averages 60 yards in width, and is extremely tortuous; the
current is slight, and, though shallow, the water is opaque.
We slowly descended to Maldah, where we arrived on the 11th: the
temperature both of the water and of the air increased rapidly to
upwards of 90 degrees; the former was always a few degrees cooler
than the air by day, and warmer by night. The atmosphere became drier
as we receded from the mountains.

The boatmen always brought up by the shore at night; and our progress
was so slow, that we could keep up with the boat when walking along
the bank. So long as the soil and river-bed continued sandy, few
bushes or herbs were to be found, and it was difficult to collect a
hundred kinds of plants in a day: gradually, however, clumps of trees
appeared, with jujube bushes, _Trophis, Acacia,_ and _Buddleia,_ a
few fan-palms, bamboos, and Jack-trees. A shell (_Anodon_) was the
only one seen in the river, which harboured few water-plants or
birds, and neither alligators nor porpoises ascend so high.

On the 7th of May, about eighty miles in a straight line from the
foot of the Himalaya, we found the stratified sandy banks, which had
gradually risen to a height of thirteen feet, replaced by the hard
alluvial clay of the Gangetic valley, which underlies the sand: the
stream contracted, and the features of its banks were materially
improved by a jungle of tamarisk, wormwood (_Artemisia_), and white
rose-bushes (_Rosa involucrata_), whilst mango trees became common,
with tamarinds, banyan, and figs. Date and _Caryota_ palms, and
rattan canes, grew in the woods, and parasitic Orchids on the trees,
which were covered with a climbing fern (_Acrosticum scandens_), so
that we easily doubled our flora of the river banks before arriving
at Maldah.

This once populous town is, like Berhampore, now quite decayed, since
the decline of its silk and indigo trades: the staple product, called
"Maldy," a mixture of silk and cotton, very durable, and which washes
well, now forms its only trade, and is exported through Sikkim to the
north-west provinces and Tibet. It is still famous for the size and
excellence of its mangos, which ripen late in May; but this year the
crop had been destroyed by the damp heats of spring, the usual
north-west dry winds not having prevailed.

The ruins of the once famous city of Gour, a few miles distant, are
now covered with jungle, and the buildings are fast disappearing,
owing to the bricks being carried away to be used elsewhere.

Below Maldah the river gets broader, and willow becomes common.
We found specimens of a _Planorbis_ in the mud of the stream, and saw
apparently a boring shell in the alluvium, but could not land to
examine it. Chalky masses of alligators' droppings, like coprolites,
are very common, buried in the banks, which become twenty feet high
at the junction with the Ganges, where we arrived on the 14th.
The waters of this great river were nearly two degrees cooler than
those of the Mahanuddy.

Rampore-Bauleah is a large station on the north bank of the Ganges,
whose stream is at this season fully a mile wide, with a very slow
current; its banks are thirty feet above the water. We were most
kindly received by Mr. Bell, the collector of the district, to whom
we were greatly indebted for furthering us on our voyage: boats being
very difficult to procure, we were, however, detained here from the
16th to the 19th. I was fortunate in being able to compare my
barometers with a first-rate standard instrument, and in finding no
appreciable alteration since leaving Calcutta in the previous April.
The elevation of the station is 130 feet above the sea, that of
Kishengunj I made 131; so that the Gangetic valley is nearly a dead
level for fully a hundred miles north, beyond which it rises;
Titalya, 150 miles to the north, being 360 feet, and Siligoree, at
the margin of the Terai, rather higher. The river again falls more
considerably than the land; the Mahanuddy, at Kishengunj, being about
twenty feet below the level of the plains, or 110 above the sea;
whereas the Ganges, at Rampore, is probably not more than eighty
feet, even when the water is highest.

The climate of Rampore is marked by greater extremes than that of
Calcutta: during our stay the temperature rose above 106 degrees, and
fell to 78 degrees at night: the mean was 2.5 degrees higher than at
Calcutta, which is 126 miles further south. Being at the head of the
Gangetic delta, which points from the Sunderbunds obliquely to the
north-west, it is much damper than any locality further west, as is
evidenced by two kinds of _Calamus_ palm abounding, which do not
ascend the Ganges beyond Monghyr. Advancing eastwards, the dry
north-west wind of the Gangetic valley, which blows here in
occasional gusts, is hardly felt; and easterly winds, rising after
the sun (or, in other words, following the heating of the open dry
country), blow down the great valley of the Burrampooter, or
south-easterly ones come up from the Bay of Bengal. The western head
of the Gangetic delta is thus placed in what are called "the
variables" in naval phraseology; but only so far as its superficial
winds are concerned, for its great atmospheric current always blows
from the Bay of Bengal, and flows over all northern India, to the
lofty regions of Central Asia.

At Rampore I found the temperature of the ground, at three feet
depth, varied from 87.8 degrees to 89.8 degrees, being considerably
lower than that of the air (94.2 degrees), whilst that of a fine
ripening shaddock, into which I plunged a thermometer bulb, varied
little from 81 degrees, whether the sun shone on it or not. From this
place we made very slow progress south-eastwards, with a gentle
current, but against constant easterly winds, and often violent gales
and thunder-storms, which obliged us to bring up under shelter of
banks and islands of sand. Sometimes we sailed along the broad river,
whose opposite shores were rarely both visible at once, and at others
tracked the boat through narrow creeks that unite the many Himalayan
streams, and form a network soon after leaving their mountain valleys.

A few miles beyond Pubna we passed from a narrow canal at once into
the main stream of the Burrampooter at Jaffergunj: our maps had led
us to expect that it flowed fully seventy miles to the eastward in
this latitude; and we were surprised to hear that within the last
twenty years the main body of that river had shifted its course thus
far to the westward. This alteration was not effected by the gradual
working westwards of the main stream, but by the old eastern channel
so rapidly silting up as to be now unnavigable; while the Jummul,
which receives the Teesta, and which is laterally connected by
branches with the Burrampooter, became consequently wider and deeper,
and eventually the principal stream.

Nothing can be more dreary and uninteresting than the scenery of this
part of the delta. The water is clay-coloured and turbid, always
cooler than the air, which again was 4 degrees or 5 degrees below
that of Calcutta, with a damper atmosphere. The banks are of
stratified sand and mud, hardly raised above the mean level of the
country, and consequently unlike those bordering most annually
flooded rivers; for here the material is so unstable, that the
current yearly changes its course. A wiry grass sometimes feebly
binds the loose soil, on which there are neither houses nor

Ascending the Jummul (now the main channel of the Burrampooter) for a
few miles, we turned off into a narrower channel, sixty miles long,
which passes by Dacca, where we arrived on the 28th, and where we
were again detained for boats, the demand for which is rapidly
increasing with the extended cultivation of the Sunderbunds and
Delta. We stayed with Mr. Atherton, and botanised in the
neighbourhood of the town, which was once very extensive, and is
still large, though not flourishing. The population is mostly
Mahometan; the site, though beautiful and varied, is unhealthy for
Europeans. Ruins of great Moorish brick buildings still remain, and a
Greek style of ornamenting the houses prevails to a remarkable degree.

The manufacture of rings for the arms and ancles, from conch-shells
imported from the Malayan Archipelago, is still almost confined to
Dacca: the shells are sawn across for this purpose by semicircular
saws, the hands and toes being both actively employed in the
operation. The introduction of circular saws has been attempted by
some European gentlemen, but steadily resisted by the natives,
despite their obvious advantages. The Dacca muslin manufacture, which
once employed thousands of hands, is quite at an end, so that it was
with great difficulty that the specimens of these fabrics sent to the
Great Exhibition of 1851, were procured. The kind of cotton (which is
very short in the staple) employed, is now hardly grown, and scarcely
a loom exists which is fit for the finest fabrics. The jewellers
still excel in gold and silver filagree.

Pine-apples, plantains, mangos, and oranges, abound in the Dacca
market, betokening a better climate for tropical fruits than that of
Western Bengal; and we also saw the fruit of _Euryale ferox,_* [An
Indian water-lily with a small red flower, covered everywhere with
prickles, and so closely allied to _Victoria regia_ as to be scarcely
generically distinguishable from it. It grows in the eastern
Sunderbunds, and also in Kashmir. The discoverer of Victoria called
the latter "_Euryale Amazonica._" These interestiug plants are
growing side by side in the new Victoria house at Kew. The Chinese
species has been erroneously considered different from the Indian
one.] which is round, soft, pulpy, and the size of a small orange; it
contains from eight to fifteen round black seeds as large as peas,
which are full of flour, and are eaten roasted in India and China, in
which latter country the plant is said to have been in cultivation
for upwards of 3000 years.

The native vegetation is very similar to that of the Hoogly, except
that the white rose is frequent here. The fact of a plant of this
genus being as common on the plains of Bengal as a dog-rose is in
England, and associated with cocoa-nuts, palms, mangos, plantains,
and banyans, has never yet attracted the attention of botanists,
though the species was described by Roxburgh. As a geographical fact
it is of great importance, for the rose is usually considered a
northern genus, and no kind but this inhabits a damp hot tropical
climate. Even in mountainous countries situated near the equator, as
in the Himalaya and Andes, wild roses are very rare, and only found
at great elevations, whilst they are unknown in the southern
hemisphere. It is curious that this rose, which is also a native of
Birma and the Indian Peninsula, does not in this latitude grow west
of the meridian of 87 degrees; it is confined to the upper Gangetic
delta, and inhabits a climate in which it would least of all be
looked for.

I made the elevation of Dacca by barometer only seventy-two feet
above the sea; and the banks of the Dallisary being high, the level
of its waters at this season is scarcely above that of the Bay of
Bengal. The mean temperature of the air was 86.75 degrees during our
stay, or half a degree lower than Calcutta at the same period.

We pursued our voyage on the 30th of May, to the old bed of the
Burrampooter, an immense shallow sheet of water, of which the eastern
bank is for eighty miles occupied by the delta of the Soormah.
This river rises on the Munnipore frontier, and flows through Cachar,
Silhet, and the Jheels of east Bengal, receiving the waters of the
Cachar, Jyntea, Khasia, and Garrow mountains (which bound the Assam
valley to the south), and of the Tipperah hills, which stretch
parallel to them, and divide the Soormah valley from the Bay of
Bengal. The immense area thus drained by the Soormah is hardly raised
above the level of the sea, and covers about 10,000 square miles.
The anastomosing rivers that traverse it, flow very gently, and do
not materially alter their course; hence their banks gradually rise
above the mean level of the surrounding country, and on them the
small villages are built, surrounded by extensive rice-fields that
need no artificial irrigation. At this season the general surface of
the Jheels is marshy; but during the rains, which are excessive on
the neighbouring mountains, they resemble an inland sea, the water
rising gradually to within a few inches of the floor of the huts; as,
however, it subsides as slowly in autumn, it commits no devastation.
The communication is at all seasons by boats, in the management of
which the natives (chiefly Mahometans) are expert.

The want of trees and shrubs is the most remarkable feature of the
Jheels; in which respect they differ from the Sunderbunds, though the
other physical features of each are similar, the level being exactly
the same: for this difference there is no apparent cause, beyond the
influence of the tide and sea atmosphere. Long grasses of tropical
genera (_Saccharum, Donax, Andropogon,_ and _Rottboellia_) ten feet
high, form the bulk of the vegetation, with occasional low bushes
along the firmer banks of the natural canals that everywhere
intersect the country; amongst these the rattan cane (_Calamus_),
rose, a laurel, _Stravadium,_ and fig, are the most common; while
beautiful convolvuli throw their flowering shoots across the water.

The soil, which is sandy along the Burrampooter, is more muddy and
clayey in the centre of the Jheels, with immense spongy accumulations
of vegetable matter in the marshes, through which we poked the
boat-staves without finding bottom: they were for the most part
formed of decomposed grass roots, with occasionally leaves, but no
quantity of moss or woody plants. Along the courses of the greater
streams drift timber and various organic fragments are no doubt
imbedded, but as there is no current over the greater part of the
flooded surface, there can be little or no accumulation, except
perhaps of old canoes, or of such vegetables as grow on the spot.
The waters are dark-coloured, but clear and lucid, even at
their height.

We proceeded up the Burrampooter, crossing it obliquely; its banks
were on the average five miles apart, and formed of sand, without
clay, and very little silt or mud: the water was clear and brown,
like that of the Jheels, and very different from that of the Jummul.
We thence turned eastwards into the delta of the Soormah, which we
traversed in a north-easterly direction to the stream itself.
We often passed through very narrow channels, where the grasses
towered over the boats: the boatmen steered in and out of them as
they pleased, and we were utterly at a loss to know how they guided
themselves, as they had neither compass nor map, and there were few
villages or landmarks; and on climbing the mast we saw multitudes of
other masts and sails peeing over the grassy marshes, doing just the
same as we did. All that go up have the south-west wind in their
favour, and this helps them to their course, but beyond this they
have no other guide but that instinct which habit begets. Often we
had to retreat from channels that promised to prove short cuts, but
which turned out to be blind alleys. Sometimes we sailed up broader
streams of chesnut-brown water, accompanied by fleets of boats
repairing to the populous districts at the foot of the Khasia, for
rice, timber, lime, coal, bamboos, and long reeds for thatching, all
of which employ an inland navy throughout the year in their transport
to Calcutta.

Leeches and mosquitos were very troublesome, the latter appearing in
clouds at night; during the day they were rarer, but the species was
the same. A large cray-fish was common, but there were few birds and
no animals to be seen.

Fifty-four barometric observations, taken at the level of the water
on the voyage between Dacca and the Soormah, and compared with
Calcutta, showed a gradual rise of the mercury in proceeding
eastwards; for though the pressure at Calcutta was .055 of an inch
higher than at Dacca, it was .034 lower than on the Soormah: the mean
difference between all these observations and the cotemporaneous ones
at Calcutta was + .003 in favour of Calcutta, and the temperature
half a degree lower; the dew-point and humidity were nearly the same
at both places. This being the driest season of the year, it is very
probable that the mean level of the water at this part of the delta
is not higher than that of the Bay of Bengal; but as we advanced
northwards towards the Khasia, and entered the Soormah itself, the
atmospheric pressure increased further, thus appearing to give the
bed of that stream a depression of thirty-five feet below the Bay of
Bengal, into which it flows! This was no doubt the result of unequal
atmospheric pressure at the two localities, caused by the disturbance
of the column of atmosphere by the Khasia mountains; for in December
of the same year, thirty-eight observations on the surface of the
Soormah made its bed forty-six feet _above_ the Bay of Bengal,
whilst, from twenty-three observations on the Megna, the pressure
only differed + 0.020 of an inch from that of the barometer at
Calcutta, which is eighteen feet above the sea-level.

These barometric levellings, though far from satisfactory as compared
with trigonometric, are extremely interesting in the absence of the
latter. In a scientific point of view nothing has been done towards
determining the levels of the land and waters of the great Gangetic
delta, since Rennell's time, yet no geodetical operation promises
more valuable results in geography and physical geology than running
three lines of level across its area; from Chittagong to Calcutta,
from Silhet to Rampore, and from Calcutta to Silhet. The foot of the
Sikkim Himalaya has, I believe, been connected with Calcutta by the
great trigonometrical survey, but I am given to understand that the
results are not published.

My own barometric levellings would make the bed of the Mahanuddy and
Ganges at the western extremity of the delta, considerably higher
than I should have expected, considering how gentle the current is,
and that the season was that of low water. If my observations are
correct, they probably indicate a diminished pressure, which is not
easily accounted for, the lower portion of the atmospheric column at
Rampore being considerably drier and therefore heavier than at
Calcutta. At the eastern extremity again, towards Silhet, the
atmosphere is much damper than at Calcutta, and the barometer should
therefore have stood lower, indicating a higher level of the waters
than is the case.

To the geologist the Jheels and Sunderbunds are a most instructive
region, as whatever may be the mean elevation of their waters, a
permanent depression of ten to fifteen feet would submerge an immense
tract, which the Ganges, Burrampooter, and Soormah would soon cover
with beds of silt and sand. There would be extremely few shells in
the beds thus formed, the southern and northern divisions of which
would present two very different floras and faunas, and would in all
probability be referred by future geologists to widely different
epochs. To the north, beds of peat would be formed by grasses, and in
other parts, temperate and tropical forms of plants and animals would
be preserved in such equally balanced proportions as to confound the
palaeontologist; with the bones of the long-snouted alligator,
Gangetic porpoise, Indian cow, buffalo, rhinoceros, elephant, tiger,
deer, boar; and a host of other animals, he would meet with acorns of
several species of oak, pine-cones and magnolia fruits, rose seeds,
and _Cycas_ nuts, with palm nuts, screw-pines, and other tropical
productions. On the other hand, the Sunderbunds portion, though
containing also the bones of the tiger, deer, and buffalo, would have
none of the Indian cow, rhinoceros, or elephant; there would be
different species of porpoise, alligator, and deer, and none of the
above mentioned plants (_Cycas,_ oak, pine, magnolia and rose), which
would be replaced by numerous others, all distinct from those of the
Jheels, and many of them indicative of the influence of salt water,
whose proximity (from the rarity of sea-shells) might not otherwise
be suspected.

Illustration--VIEW IN THE JHEELS.

On the 1st of June we entered the Soormah, a full and muddy stream
flowing west, a quarter of a mile broad, with banks of mud and clay
twelve or fifteen feet high, separating it from marshes, and covered
with betel-nut and cocoa-nut palms, figs, and banyans. Many small
villages were scattered along the banks, each with a swarm of boats,
and rude kilns for burning the lime brought from the Khasia
mountains, which is done with grass and bushes. We ascended to
Chattuc, against a gentle current, arriving on the 9th.

From this place the Khasia mountains are seen as a long table-topped
range running east and west, about 4000 to 5000 feet high, with steep
faces towards the Jheels, out of which they appear to rise abruptly.
Though twelve miles distant, large waterfalls are very clearly seen
precipitating themselves over the cliffs into a bright green mass of
foliage, that seems to creep half way up their flanks. The nearly
horizontal arrangement of the strata is as conspicuous here, as in
the sandstone of the Kymore hills in the Soane valley, which these
mountains a good deal resemble; but they are much higher, and the
climate is widely different. Large valleys enter the hills, and are
divided by hog-backed spurs, and it is far within these valleys that
the waterfalls and precipices occur; but the nearer and further
cliffs being thrown by perspective into one range, they seem to rise
out of the Jheels so abruptly as to remind one of some precipitous
island in the ocean.

Chattuc is mainly indebted for its existence to the late Mr. Inglis,
who resided there for upwards of sixty years, and opened a most
important trade between the Khasia and Calcutta in oranges, potatos,
coal, lime, and timber. We were kindly received by his son, whose
bungalow occupies a knoll, of which there are several, which
attracted our attention as being the only elevations fifty feet high
which we had ascended since leaving the foot of the Sikkim Himalaya.
They rise as islets (commonly called Teela, Beng.) out of the Jheels,
within twelve to twenty miles of the Khasia; they are chiefly formed
of stratified gravel and sand, and are always occupied by villages
and large trees. They seldom exceed sixty feet in height, and
increase in number and size as the hills are approached; they are
probably the remains of a deposit that was once spread uniformly
along the foot of the mountains, and they in all respects resemble
those I have described as rising abruptly from the plains near
Titalya (see vol. i. chapter xvii).

The climate of Chattuc is excessively damp and hot throughout the
year, but though sunk amid interminable swamps, the place is
perfectly healthy! Such indeed is the character of the climate
throughout the Jheels, where fevers and agues are rare; and though no
situations can appear more malarious to the common observer than
Silhet and Cachar, they are in fact eminently salubrious. These facts
admit of no explanation in the present state of our knowledge of
endemic diseases. Much may be attributed to the great amount and
purity of the water, the equability of the climate, the absence of
forests and of sudden changes from wet to dry; but such facts afford
no satisfactory explanation. The water, as I have above said, is of a
rich chesnut-brown in the narrow creeks of the Jheels, and is golden
yellow by transmitted light, owing no doubt, as in bog water and that
of dunghills, to a vegetable extractive and probably the presence of
carburetted hydrogen. Humboldt mentions this dark-coloured water as
prevailing in some of the swamps of the Cassiquares, at the junction
of the Orinoco and Amazon, and gives much curious information on its
accompanying features of animal and vegetable life.

The rains generally commence in May: they were unusually late this
year, though the almost daily gales and thunder-storms we
experienced, foretold their speedy arrival. From May till October
they are unremitting, and the country is under water, the Soormah
rising about fifty feet. North-easterly winds prevail, but they are a
local current reflected from the Khasia, against which the southerly
perennial trade-wind impinges. Westerly winds are very rare, but the
dry north-west blasts of India have been known to traverse the delta
and reach this meridian, in one or two short hot dry puffs during
March and April. Hoarfrost is unknown.* [It however forms further
south, at the very mouth of the Megna, and is the effect of intense
radiation when the thermometer in the shade falls to 45 degrees.]

China roses and tropical plants (_Bignoniae, Asclepiadeae,_ and
_Convolvuli_) rendered Mr. Inglis' bungalow gay, but little else will
grow in the gardens. Pine-apples are the best fruit, and oranges from
the foot of the Khasia: plantains ripen imperfectly, and the mango is
always acid, attacked by grubs, and having a flavour of turpentine.
The violent hailstorms of the vernal equinox cut both spring and cold
season flowers and vegetables, and the rains destroy all summer
products. The soil is a wet clay, in which some European vegetables
thrive well if planted in October or November. We were shown
marrowfat peas that had been grown for thirty years without
degenerating in size, but their flavour was poor.

Small long canoes, paddled rapidly by two men, were procured here,
whereby to ascend the narrow rivers that lead up to the foot of the
mountains: they each carry one passenger, who lies along the bottom,
protected by a bamboo platted arched roof. We started at night, and
early the next morning arrived at Pundua,* [Pundua, though an
insignificant village, surrounded by swamps, has enjoyed an undue
share of popularity as a botanical region. Before the geographical
features of the country north of Silhet were known, the plants
brought from those hills by native collectors were sent to the
Calcutta garden (and thence to Europe) as from Pundua. Hence Silhet
mountains and Pundua mountains, both very erroneous terms, are
constantly met with in botanical works, and generally refer to plants
growing in the Khasia mountains.] where there is a dilapidated
bungalow: the inhabitants are employed in the debarkation of lime,
coal, and potatos. Large fleets of boats crowded the narrow creeks,
some of the vessels being of several tons burden.

Elephants were kindly sent here for us by Mr. H. Inglis, to take us
to the foot of the mountains, about three miles distant, and relays
of mules and ponies to ascend to Churra, where we were received with
the greatest hospitality by that gentleman, who entertained us till
the end of June, and procured us servants and collectors. To his kind
offices we were also indebted throughout our travels in the Khasia,
for much information, and for facilities and necessaries of all
kinds: things in which the traveller is more dependent on his fellow
countrymen in India, than in any other part of the world.

We spent two days at Pundua, waiting for our great boats (which drew
several feet of water), and collecting in the vicinity. The old
bungalow, without windows and with the roof falling in, was a most
miserable shelter; and whichever way we turned from the door, a river
or a swamp lay before us. Birds, mosquitos, leeches, and large wasps
swarmed, also rats and sandflies. A more pestilential hole cannot be
conceived; and yet people traverse this district, and sleep here at
all seasons of the year with impunity. We did so ourselves in the
month of June, when the Sikkim and all other Terais are deadly: we
returned in September, traversing the Jheels and nullahs at the very
foot of the hills during a short break of fine weather in the middle
of the rains; and we again slept here in November,* [At the north
foot of the Khasia, in the heavily timbered dry Terai stretching for
sixty miles to the Burrampooter, it is almost inevitable death for a
European to sleep, any time between the end of April and of November.
Many have crossed that tract, but not one without taking fever:
Mr. H. Inglis was the only survivor of a party of five, and he was
ill from the effects for upwards of two years, after having been
brought to death's door by the first attack, which came on within
three weeks of his arrival at Churra, and by several relapses.]
always exposed in the heat of the day to wet and fatigue, and never
having even a _soupcon_ of fever, ague, or rheumatism. This immunity
does not, however, extend to the very foot of the hills, as it is
considered imprudent to sleep at this season in the bungalow of
Terrya, only three miles off.

The elevation of Pundua bungalow is about forty feet above the sea,
and that of the waters surrounding it, from ten to thirty, according
to the season. In June the mean of the barometer readings at the
bungalow was absolutely identical with that of the Calcutta
barometer, In September it was 0.016 inch lower, and in November
0.066 lower. The mean annual temperature throughout the Jheels is
less than 2 degrees below that of Calcutta.

Terrya bungalow lies at the very foot of the first rise of the
mountains; on the way we crossed many small streams upon the
elephants, and one large one by canoes: the water in all was cool*
[Temperature in September 77 degrees to 80 degrees; and in November
75.7 degrees.] and sparkling, running rapidly over boulders and
pebbles. Their banks of sandy clay were beautifully fringed with a
willow-like laurel, _Ehretia_ bushes, bamboos, palms, _Bauhinia,
Bombax,_ and _Erythrina,_ over which _Calamus_ palm (rattan) and
various flowering plants climbed. The rock at Terrya is a nummulitic
limestone, worn into extensive caverns. This formation is said to
extend along the southern flank of the Khasia, Garrow, and Jyntea
mountains, and to be associated with sandstone and coal: it is
extensively quarried in many places, several thousand tons being
annually shipped for Calcutta and Dacca. It is succeeded by a
horizontally stratified sandstone, which is continued up to 4000
feet, where it is overlain by coal-beds and then by limestone again.

The sub-tropical scenery of the lower and outer Sikkim Himalaya,
though on a much more gigantic scale, is not comparable in beauty and
luxuriance with the really tropical vegetation induced by the hot,
damp, and insular climate of these perennially humid mountains.
At the Himalaya forests of gigantic trees, many of them deciduous,
appear from a distance as masses of dark gray foliage, clothing
mountains 10,000 feet high: here the individual trees are smaller,
more varied in kind, of a brilliant green, and contrast with gray
limestone and red sandstone rocks and silvery cataracts. Palms are
more numerous here;* [There are upwards of twenty kinds of Palm in
this district, including _Chamaerops,_ three species of _Areca,_ two
of _Wallichia, Arenga, Caryota,_ three of _Phoenix, Plectocomia,
Licuala,_ and many species of _Calamus._ Besides these there are
several kinds of _Pandanus,_ and the _Cycas pectinata._] the
cultivated _Areca_ (betel-nut) especially, raising its graceful stem
and feathery crown, "like an arrow shot down from heaven," in
luxuriance and beauty above the verdant slopes. This difference is at
once expressed to the Indian botanist by defining the Khasia flora as
of Malayan character; by which is meant the prevalence of brilliant
glossy-leaved evergreen tribes of trees (as _Euphorbiaceae_ and
_Urticeae_), especially figs, which abound in the hot gulleys, where
the property of their roots, which inosculate and form natural
grafts, is taken advantage of in bridging streams, and in
constructing what are called living bridges, of the most picturesque
forms. _Combretaceae,_ oaks, oranges, _Garcinia_ (gamboge),
_Diospyros,_ figs, Jacks, plantains, and _Pandanus,_ are more
frequent here, together with pinnated leaved _Leguminosae,
Meliaceae,_ vines and peppers, and above all palms, both climbing
ones with pinnated shining leaves (as _Calamus_ and _Plectocomia_),
and erect ones with similar leaves (as cultivated cocoa-nut, _Areca_
and _Arenga_), and the broader-leaved wild betel-nut, and beautiful
_Caryota_ or wine-palm, whose immense decompound leaves are twelve
feet long. Laurels and wild nutmegs, with _Henslowia, Itea,_ etc.,
were frequent in the forest, with the usual prevalence of parasites,
mistleto, epiphytical _Orchideae, AEshynanthus,_ ferns, mosses, and
_Lycopodia_; and on the ground were _Rubiaceae, Scitamineae,_ ferns,
_Acanthaceae,_ beautiful balsams, and herbaceous and shrubby nettles.
Bamboos* [The natives enumerate about fourteen different kinds of
bamboo, of which we found five in flower, belonging to three very
distinct genera. Uspar, Uspet, Uspit, Usken, Uskong, Uktang, Usto,
Silee, Namlang, Tirra, and Battooba are some of the names of Bamboos
vouched for by Mr. Inglis as correctly spelt. Of other Khasia names
of plants, Wild Plantains are called Kairem, and the cultivated
Kakesh; the latter are considered so nourishing that they are given
to newborn infants. Senteo is a flower in Khas, So a fruit, Ading a
tree, and Te a leaf. _Pandanus_ is Kashelan. _Plectocomia,_ Usmole.
_Licuala,_ Kuslow. _Caryota,_ Kalai-katang. _Wallichia,_ Kalai-nili.
_Areca,_ Waisola. Various _Calami_ are Rhimet, Uriphin, Ureek hilla,
Tindrio, etc. This list will serve as a specimen; I might increase it
materially, but as I have elsewhere observed, the value attached to
the supposed definite application of native names to natural objects
is greatly over-rated, and too much reliance on them has introduced a
prodigious amount of confusion into scientific works and philological
inquiries.] of many kinds are very abundant, and these hills further
differ remarkably from those of Sikkim in the great number of species
of grasses.

The ascent was at first gradual, along the sides of a sandstone spur.
At 2000 feet the slope suddenly became steep and rocky, at 3000 feet
tree vegetation disappeared, and we opened a magnificent prospect of
the upper scarped flank of the valley of Moosmai, which we were
ascending, with four or five beautiful cascades rolling over the
table top of the hills, broken into silvery foam as they leapt from
ledge to ledge of the horizontally stratified precipice, and throwing
a veil of silver gauze over the gulf of emerald green vegetation,
2000 feet below. The views of the many cataracts of the first class
that are thus precipitated over the bare table-land on which Churra
stands, into the valleys on either side, surpass anything of the kind
that I have elsewhere seen, though in many respects vividly recalling
the scenery around Rio de Janeiro: nor do I know any spot in the
world more calculated to fascinate the naturalist who, while
appreciating the elements of which a landscape is composed, is also
keenly alive to the beauty and grandeur of tropical scenery.


At the point where this view opens, a bleak stony region commences,
bearing numberless plants of a temperate flora and of European
genera, at a comparatively low elevation; features which continue to
the top of the flat on which the station is built, 4000 feet above
the sea.

Illustration--DEWAN'S EAR-RING.


Churra, English station of -- Khasia people -- Garrow people --
Houses -- Habits -- Dress -- Arms -- Dialects -- Marriages -- Food --
Funerals -- Superstitions -- Flat of Churra -- Scenery -- Lime and
coal -- Mamloo -- Cliffs -- Cascades -- _Chamaerops_ palm --
Jasper-rocks -- Flora of Churra -- Orchids -- Rhododendrons -- Pine
-- Climate -- Extraordinary rain-fall -- Its effects -- Gardens of
Lieuts. Raban and Cave -- Leave Churra to cross the mountain range --
Coal, shale, and underclay -- Kala-panee river -- Lailangkot --
_Luculia Pinceana_ -- Conglomerate Surureem wood -- Boga-panee river
-- View of Himalaya -- Green-stone -- Age of Pine-cones -- Moflong
plants -- _Coix_ -- Chillong mountain -- Extensive view -- Road to
Syong -- Broad valleys -- Geology -- Plants -- Myrung -- Granite
blocks -- Kollong rock -- Pine-woods -- Features of country --
Orchids -- Iron forges.

Churra Poonji is said to be so called from the number of streams in
the neighbourhood, and poonji, "a village" (Khas.): it was selected
for a European station, partly from the elevation and consequent
healthiness of the spot, and partly from its being on the high road
from Silhet to Gowahatty, on the Burrampooter, the capital of Assam,
which is otherwise only accessible by ascending that river, against
both its current and the perennial east wind. A rapid postal
communication is hereby secured: but the extreme unhealthiness of the
northern foot of the mountains effectually precludes all other
intercourse for nine months in the year.

On the first opening up of the country, the Europeans were brought
into sanguinary collision with the Khasias, who fought bravely with
bows and arrows, displaying a most blood-thirsty and cruel
disposition. This is indeed natural to them; and murders continued
very frequent as preludes to the most trifling robberies, until the
extreme penalty of our law was put in force. Even now, some of the
tributary Rajahs are far from quiet under our rule, and various parts
of the country are not safe to travel in. The Garrows, who occupy the
western extremity of this range, at the bend of the Burrampooter, are
still in a savage state. Human sacrifices and polyandry are said to
be frequent amongst them, and their orgies are detestable. Happily we
are hardly ever brought into collision with them, except by their
occasional depredations on the Assam and Khasia frontier: their
country is very unhealthy, and is said to contain abundance of coal,
iron, and lime.

We seldom employed fewer than twelve or fourteen of the natives as
collectors, and when travelling, from thirty to forty as coolies,
etc. They are averse to rising early, and are intolerably filthy in
their persons, though not so in their cottages, which are very poor,
with broad grass roofs reaching nearly to the ground, and usually
encircled by bamboo fences; the latter custom is not common in savage
communities, and perhaps indicates a dread of treachery. The beams
are of hewn wood (they do not use saws), often neatly carved, and the
doors turn on good wooden pivots. They have no windows, and the fire
is made on the floor: the utensils, etc. are placed on hanging
shelves and in baskets.

The Khasia people are of the Indo-Chinese race; they are short, very
stout, and muscular, with enormous calves and knees, rather narrow
eyes and little beard, broad, high cheekbones, flat noses, and open
nostrils. I believe that a few are tattooed. The hair is gathered
into a top-knot, and sometimes shaved off the forehead and temples.
A loose cotton shirt, often striped blue and red, without sleeves and
bordered with long thread fringes, is their principal garment; it is
gathered into a girdle of silver chains by people of rank. A cotton
robe is sometimes added, with a large cotton turban or small
skull-cap. The women wear a long cloth tied in a knot across the
breast. During festivals both men and women load themselves with silk
robes, fans, peacock's feathers, and gold and silver ornaments of
great value, procured from Assam, many of which are said to be
extremely curious, but I regret to say that I never saw any of them.
On these occasions spirits are drunk, and dancing kept up all night:
the dance is described as a slow ungraceful motion, the women being
tightly swathed in cloths.

All their materials are brought from Assam; the only articles in
constant use, of their own manufacture, being a rude sword or knife
with a wooden handle and a long, narrow, straight blade of iron, and
the baskets with head-straps, like those used by the Lepchas, but
much neater; also a netted bag of pine-apple fibre (said to come from
Silhet) which holds a clasp-knife, comb, flint, steel, and betel-nut
box. They are much addicted to chewing pawn (betel-nut, pepper
leaves, and lime) all day long, and their red saliva looks like blood
on the paths. Besides the sword I have described, they carry bows and
arrows, and rarely a lance, and a bamboo wicker-work shield.

We found the Khasias to be sulky intractable fellows, contrasting
unpleasantly with the Lepchas; wanting in quickness, frankness, and
desire to please, and obtrusively independent in manner; nevertheless
we had a head man who was very much the reverse of this, and whom we
had never any cause to blame. Their language is, I believe,
Indo-Chinese and monosyllabic: it is disagreeably nasal and guttural,
and there are several dialects and accents in contiguous villages.
All inflections are made by prefixing syllables, and when using the
Hindoo language, the future is invariably substituted for the past
tense. They count up to a hundred, and estimate distances by the
number of mouthfuls of pawn they eat on the road.

Education has been attempted by missionaries with partial success,
and the natives are said to have shown themselves apt scholars.
Marriage is a very loose tie amongst them, and hardly any ceremony
attends it. We were informed that the husband does not take his wife
home, but enters her father's household, and is entertained there.
Divorce and an exchange of wives is common, and attended with no
disgrace: thus the son often forgets his father's name and person
before he grows up, but becomes strongly attached to his mother.
The sister's son inherits both property and rank, and the
proprietors' or Rajahs' offspring are consequently often reared in
poverty and neglect. The usual toy of the children is the bow and
arrow, with which they are seldom expert; they are said also to spin
pegtops like the English, climb a greased pole, and run round with a
beam turning horizontally on an upright, to which it is attached by
a pivot.

The Khasias eat fowls, and all meat, especially pork, potatos and
vegetables, dried and half putrid fish in abundance, but they have an
aversion to milk, which is very remarkable, as a great proportion of
their country is admirably adapted for pasturage. In this respect,
however, they assimilate to the Chinese, and many Indo-Chinese
nations who are indifferent to milk, as are the Sikkim people.
The Bengalees, Hindoos, and Tibetans, on the other hand, consume
immense quantities of milk. They have no sheep, and few goats or
cattle, the latter of which are kept for slaughter; they have,
however, plenty  of pigs and fowls. Eggs are most abundant, but used
for omens only, and it is a common, but disgusting occurrence, to see
large groups employed for hours in breaking them upon stones,
shouting and quarrelling, surrounded by the mixture of yellow yolks
and their red pawn saliva.

The funeral ceremonies are the only ones of any importance, and are
often conducted with barbaric pomp and expense; and rude stones of
gigantic proportions are erected as monuments, singly or in rows,
circles, or supporting one another, like those of Stonehenge, which
they rival in dimensions and appearance. The body is burned, though
seldom during the rains, from the difficulty of obtaining a fire; it
is therefore preserved in honey (which is abundant and good) till the
dry season: a practice I have read of as prevailing among some tribes
in the Malay peninsula. Spirits are drunk on these occasions; but the
hill Khasia is not addicted to drunkenness, though some of the
natives of the low valleys are very much so. These ascend the rocky
faces of the mountains by ladders, to the Churra markets, and return
loaded at night, apparently all but too drunk to stand; yet they
never miss their footing in places which are most dangerous to
persons unaccustomed to such situations.


The Khasias are superstitious, but have no religion; like the
Lepchas, they believe in a supreme being, and in deities of the
grove, cave, and stream. Altercations are often decided by holding
the disputants' heads under water, when the longest winded carries
his point. Fining is a common punishment, and death for grave
offences. The changes of the moon are accounted for by the theory
that this orb, who is a man, monthly falls in love with his wife's
mother, who throws ashes in his face. The sun is female; and Mr.
Yule* [I am indebted to Mr. Inglis for most of this information
relating to the Khasias, which I have since found, with much more
that is curious and interesting, in a paper by Lieut. Yule in Bengal
Asiat. Soc. Journal.] (who is my authority) says that the Pleiades
are called "the Hen-man" (as in Italy "the chickens"); also that they
have names for the twelve months; they do not divide their time by
weeks, but hold a market every four days. These people are
industrious, and good cultivators of rice, millet, and legumes of
many kinds. Potatoes were introduced amongst them about twenty years
ago by Mr. Inglis, and they have increased so rapidly that the
Calcutta market is now supplied by their produce. They keep bees in
rude hives of logs of wood.

The flat table-land on which Churra Poonji is placed, is three miles
long and two broad, dipping abruptly in front and on both sides, and
rising behind towards the main range, of which it is a spur.
The surface of this area is everywhere intersected by shallow, rocky
watercourses, which are the natural drains for the deluge that
annually visits it. The western part is undulated and hilly, the
southern rises in rocky ridges of limestone and coal, and the eastern
is very flat and stony, broken only by low isolated conical mounds.

The scenery varies extremely at different parts of the surface.
Towards the flat portion, where the English reside, the aspect is as
bleak and inhospitable as can be imagined: a thin stratum of marshy
or sandy soil covers a tabular mass of cold red sandstone; and there
is not a tree, and scarcely a shrub to be seen, except occasional
clumps of Pandanus. The low white bungalows are few in number, and
very scattered, some of them being a mile asunder, enclosed with
stone walls and shrubs; and a small white church, disused on account
of the damp, stands lonely in the centre of all.

The views from the margins of this plateau are magnificent: 4000 feet
below are bay-like valleys, carpetted as with green velvet, from
which rise tall palms, tree-ferns with spreading crowns, and rattans
shooting their pointed heads, surrounded with feathery foliage, as
with ostrich plumes, far above the great trees. Beyond are the
Jheels, looking like a broad shallow sea with the tide half out,
bounded in the blue distance by the low-hills of Tipperah. To the
right and left are the scarped red rocks and roaring waterfalls,
shooting far over the cliff's, and then arching their necks as they
expand in feathery foam, over which rainbows float, forming and
dissolving as the wind sways the curtains of spray from side to side.

To the south of Churra the lime and coal measures rise abruptly in
flat-topped craggy hills, covered with brushwood and small trees.
Similar hills are seen far westward across the intervening valleys in
the Garrow country, rising in a series of steep isolated ranges, 300
to 400 feet above the general level of the country, and always
skirting the south face of the mountains. Considerable caverns
penetrate the limestone, the broken surface of which rock presents
many picturesque and beautiful spots, like the same rocks in England.

Westward the plateau becomes very hilly, bare, and grassy, with the
streams broad and full, but superficial and rocky, precipitating
themselves in low cascades over tabular masses of sand-stone.
At Mamloo their beds are deeper, and full of brushwood, and a
splendid valley and amphitheatre of red cliffs and cascades,
rivalling those of Moosmai (chapter xxvii), bursts suddenly into
view. Mamloo is a large village, on the top of a spur, to the
westward: it is buried in a small forest, particularly rich in
plants, and is defended by a stone wall behind: the only road is
tunnelled through the sandstone rock, under the wall; and the spur on
either side dips precipitously, so that the place is almost
impregnable if properly defended. A sanguinary conflict took place
here between the British and the Khasias, which terminated in the
latter being driven over the precipices, beneath which many of them
were shot. The fan-palm, _Chamaerops Khasiana_ ("Pakha," Khas.),
grows on the cliff's near Mamloo: it may be seen on looking over the
edge of the plateau, its long curved trunk rising out of the naked
rocks, but its site is generally inaccessible;* [This species is very
closely allied to, if not identical with _P. Martiana_ of Nepal;
which ascends to 8000 feet in the western Himalaya, where it is
annually covered with snow: it is not found in Sikkim, but an allied
species occurs in Affghanistan, called _P. Ritcheana_: the dwarf palm
of southern Europe is a fourth species.] while near it grows the
_Saxifragis ciliaris_ of our English gardens, a common plant in the
north-west Himalaya, but extremely scarce in Sikkim and the
Khasia mountains.

Illustration--MAMLOO CASCADES.

The descent of the Mamloo spur is by steps, alternating with pebbly
flats, for 1500 feet, to a saddle which connects the Churra hills
with those of Lisouplang to the westward. The rise is along a very
steep narrow ridge to a broad long grassy hill, 3,500 feet high,
whence an extremely steep descent leads to the valley of the
Boga-panee, and the great mart of Chela, which is at the embouchure
of that river. The transverse valley thus formed by the Mamloo spur,
is full of orange groves, whose brilliant green is particularly
conspicuous from above. At the saddle below Mamloo are some jasper
rocks, which are the sandstone altered by basalt. Fossil shells are
recorded to have been found by Dr. M'Lelland* [See a paper on the
geology of the Khasia mountains by Dr. M'Lelland in the "Bengal
Asiatic Society's Journal."] on some of the flats, which he considers
to be raised beaches: but we sought in vain for any evidence of this
theory beyond the pebbles, whose rounding we attributed to the action
of superficial streams.

It is extremely difficult to give within the limits of this narrative
any idea of the Khasia flora, which is, in extent and number of fine
plants, the richest in India, and probably in all Asia. We collected
upwards of 2000 flowering plants within ten miles of the station of
Churra, besides 150 ferns, and a profusion of mosses, lichens, and
fungi. This extraordinary exuberance of species is not so much
attributable to the elevation, for the whole Sikkim Himalaya (three
times more elevated) does not contain 500 more flowering plants, and
far fewer ferns, etc.; but to the variety of exposures; namely,
1. the Jheels, 2. the tropical jungles, both in deep, hot, and wet
valleys, and on drier slopes; 3. the rocks; 4. the bleak table-lands
and stony soils; 5. the moor-like uplands, naked and exposed, where
many species and genera appear at 5000 to 6000 feet, which are not
found on the outer ranges of Sikkim under 10,000.* [As _Thalictrum,
Anemone,_ primrose, cowslip, _Tofieldia,_ Yew, Pine, Saxifrage,
_Delphinium, Pedicularis._] In fact, strange as it may appear, owing
to this last cause, the temperate flora descends fully 4000 feet
lower in the latitude of Khasia (25 degrees N.) than in that of
Sikkim (27 degrees N.), though the former is two degrees nearer
the equator.

The _Pandanus_ alone forms a conspicuous feature in the immediate
vicinity of Churra; while the small woods about Mamloo, Moosmai, and
the coal-pits, are composed of _Symplocos,_ laurels, brambles, and
jasmines, mixed with small oaks and _Photinia,_ and many tropical
genera of trees and shrubs.

_Orchideae_ are, perhaps, the largest natural order in the Khasia,
where fully 250 kinds grow, chiefly on trees and rocks, but many are
terrestrial, inhabiting damp woods and grassy slopes. I doubt whether
in any other part of the globe the species of orchids outnumber those
of any other natural order, or form so large a proportion of the
flora. Balsams are next in relative abundance (about twenty-five),
both tropical and temperate kinds, of great beauty and variety in
colour, form, and size of blossom. Palms amount to fourteen, of which
the _Chamaerops_ and _Arenga_ are the only genera not found in
Sikkim. Of bamboos there are also fifteen, and of other grasses 150,
which is an immense proportion, considering that the Indian flora
(including those of Ceylon, Kashmir, and all the Himalaya), hardly
contains 400. _Scitamineae_ also are abundant, and extremely
beautiful; we collected thirty-seven kinds.

No rhododendron grows at Churra, but several species occur a little
further north: there is but one pine (_P. Khasiana_) besides the yew,
(and two _Podocarpi_), and that is only found in the drier interior
regions. Singular to say, it is a species not seen in the Himalaya or
elsewhere, but very nearly allied to _Pinua longifolia,_*
[Cone-bearing pines with long leaves, like the common Scotch fir, are
found in Asia, and as far south as the Equator (in Borneo) and also
inhabit Arracan, the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, and South China. It is
a very remarkable fact that no Gymnospermous tree inhabits the
Peninsula of India; not even the genus _Podocarpus,_ which includes
most of the tropical Gymnosperms, and is technically coniferous, and
has glandular woody fibre; though like the yew it bears berries.
Two species of this genus are found in the Khasia, and one advances
as far west as Nepal. The absence of oaks and of the above genera
(_Podocarpus_ and _Pinus_) is one of the most characteristic
differences between the botany of the east and west shores of the Bay
of Bengal.] though more closely resembling the Scotch fir than that
tree does.

The natural orders whose rarity is most noticeable, are _Cruciferae,_
represented by only three kinds, and _Caryophylleae._ Of
_Ranunculaceae,_ there are six or seven species of _Clematis,_ two of
_Anemone,_ one _Delphinium,_ three of _Thalictrum,_ and two
_Ranunculi._ _Compsitae_ and _Leguminosae_ are far more numerous than
in Sikkim.

The climate of Khasia is remarkable for the excessive rain-fall.
Attention was first drawn to this by Mr. Yule, who stated, that in
the month of August, 1841, 264 inches fell, or twenty-two feet; and
that during five successive days, thirty inches fell in every
twenty-four hours! Dr. Thomson and I also recorded thirty inches in
one day and night, and during the seven months of our stay, upwards
of 500 inches fell, so that the total annual fall perhaps greatly
exceeded 600 inches, or fifty feet, which has been registered in
succeeding years! From April, 1849, to April, 1850, 502 inches
(forty-two feet) fell. This unparalleled amount is attributable to
the abruptness of the mountains which face the Bay of Bengal, from
which they are separated by 200 miles of Jheels and Sunderbunds.

This fall is very local: at Silhet, not thirty miles further south,
it is under 100 inches; at Gowahatty, north of the Khasia in Assam,
it is about 80; and even on the hills, twenty miles inland from
Churra itself, the fall is reduced to 200. At the Churra station, the
distribution of the rain is very local; my gauges, though registering
the same amount when placed beside a good one in the station; when
removed half a mile, received a widely different quantity, though the
different gauges gave nearly the same mean amount at the end of each
whole month.

The direct effect of this deluge is to raise the little streams about
Churra fourteen feet in as many hours, and to inundate the whole
flat; from which, however, the natural drainage is so complete, as to
render a tract, which in such a climate and latitude should be
clothed with exuberant forest, so sterile, that no tree finds
support, and there is no soil for cultivation of any kind whatsoever,
not even of rice. Owing, however, to the hardness of the horizontally
stratified sandstone, the streams have not cut deep channels, nor
have the cataracts worked far back into the cliffs. The limestone
alone seems to suffer, and the turbid streams from it prove how
rapidly it is becoming denuded. The great mounds of angular gravel on
the Churra flat, are perhaps the remains of an extensive deposit,
fifty feet thick, elsewhere washed away by these rains; and I have
remarked traces of the same over many slopes of the hills around.

The mean temperature of Churra (elev. 4000 feet) is about 66 degrees,
or 16 degrees below that of Calcutta; which, allowing for 22 degrees
of northing, gives 1 degree of temperature to every 290 to 300 feet
of ascent. In summer the thermometer often rises to 88 degrees and 90
degrees; and in the winter, owing to the intense radiation,
hoar-frost is frequent. Such a climate is no less inimical to the
cultivation of plants, than is the wretched soil: of this we saw
marked instances in the gardens of two of the resident officers,
Lieutenants Raban and Cave, to whom we were indebted for the greatest
kindness and hospitality. These gentlemen are indefatigable
horticulturists, and took a zealous interest in our pursuits,
accompanying us in our excursions, enriching our collections in many
ways, and keeping an eye to them and to our plant-driers during our
absence from the station. In their gardens the soil had to be brought
from a considerable distance, and dressed copiously with vegetable
matter. Bamboo clumps were planted for shelter within walls, and
native shrubs, rhododendrons, etc., introduced. Many _Orchideae_
throve well on the branches of the stunted trees which they had
planted, and some superb kinds of _Hedychium_ in the ground; but a
very few English garden plants throve in the flower-beds. Even in
pots and frames, geraniums, etc., would rot, from the rarity of
sunshine, which is as prejudicial as the damp and exposure.
Still many wild shrubs of great interest and beauty flourished, and
some European ones succeeded with skill and management; as geraniums,
_Salvia, Petunia,_ nasturtium, chrysanthemum, _Kennedya rubicunda,
Maurandya,_ and Fuchsia. The daisy seed sent from England as double,
came up very poor and single. Dahlias do not thrive, nor double
balsams. Now they have erected small but airy green-houses, and
sunlight is the only desideratum.

At the end of June, we started for the northern or Assam face of the
mountains. The road runs between the extensive and populous native
village, or poonji, on the left, and a deep valley on the right, and
commands a beautiful view of more waterfalls. Beyond this it ascends
steeply, and the sandstone on the road itself is curiously divided
into parallelograms, like hollow bricks,* [I have seen similar bricks
in the sandstones of the coal-districts of Yorkshire; they are very
puzzling, and are probably due to some very obscure crystalline
action analogous to jointing and cleavage.] enclosing irregularly
shaped nodules, while in other places it looks as if it had been run
or fused: spherical concretions of sand, coloured concentrically by
infiltration, are common in it, which have been regarded as seeds,
shells, etc.; it also contained spheres of iron pyrites. The general
appearance of much of this rock is as if it had been bored by
_Teredines_ (ship worms), but I never detected any trace of fossils.
It is often beautifully ripple-marked, and in some places much
honeycombed, and full of shales and narrow seams of coal, resting on
a white under-clay full of root-fibres, like those of _Stigmaria._

At about 5000 feet the country is very open and bare, the ridges
being so uniform and flat-topped, that the broad valleys they divide
are hidden till their precipitous edges are reached; and the eye
wanders far east and west over a desolate level grassy country,
unbroken, save by the curious flat-topped hills I have described as
belonging to the limestone formation, which lie to the south-west.
These features continue for eight miles, when a sudden descent of 600
or 700 feet, leads into the valley of the Kala-panee (Black water)
river, where there is a very dark and damp bungalow, which proved a
very great accommodation to us.* [It may be of use to the future
botanist in this country to mention a small wood on the right of this
road, near the village of Surureem, as an excellent botanical
station: the trees are chiefly _Rhododendron arboreum,_ figs, oaks,
laurels, magnolias, and chestnuts, on whose limbs are a profusion of
_Orchideae,_ and amongst which a Rattan palm occurs.

Lailang-kot is another village full of iron forges, from a height
near which a splendid view is obtained over the Churra flat. A few
old and very stunted shrubs of laurel and _Symplocos_ grow on its
bleak surface, and these are often sunk from one to three feet in a
well in the horizontally stratified sandstone. I could only account
for this by supposing it to arise from the drip from the trees, and
if so, it is a wonderful instance of the wearing effects of water,
and of the great age which small bushes sometimes attain.

The vegetation is more alpine at Kala-panee (elevation, 5,300 feet);
_Benthamia, Kadsura, Stauntonia, Illicium, Actinidia, Helwingia,
Corylopsis,_ and berberry--all Japan and Chinese, and most of them
Dorjiling genera--appear here, with the English yew, two
rhododendrons, and _Bucklandia._ There are no large trees, but a
bright green jungle of small ones and bushes, many of which are very
rare and curious. _Luculia Pinceana_ makes a gorgeous show here
in October.

The sandstone to the east of Kala-panee is capped by some beds, forty
feet thick, of conglomerate worn into cliffs; these are the remains
of a very extensive horizontally stratified formation, now all but
entirely denuded. In the valley itself, the sandstone alternates with
alum shales, which rest on a bed of quartz conglomerate, and the
latter on black greenstone. In the bed of the river, whose waters are
beautifully clear, are hornstone rocks, dipping north-east, and
striking north-west. Beyond the Kalapanee the road ascends about 600
feet, and is well quarried in hard greenstone; and passing through a
narrow gap of conglomerate rock,* [Formed of rolled masses of
greenstone and sandstone, united by a white and yellow cement.]
enters a shallow, wild, and beautiful valley, through which it runs
for several miles. The hills on either side are of greenstone capped
by tabular sandstone, immense masses of which have been precipitated
on the floor of the valley, producing a singularly wild and
picturesque scene. In the gloom of the evening it is not difficult
for a fertile imagination to fancy castles and cities cresting the
heights above.* [_Hydrangea_ grows here, with ivy, _Mussoenda,
Pyrua,_ willow, _Viburnum, Parnassia, Anemone, Leycesteria formosa,
Neillia, Rubus, Astilbe,_ rose, _Panax,_ apple, _Bucklandia, Daphne,_
pepper, _Scindapsus, Pierix,_ holly, _Lilium giganteum_ ("Kalang
tatti," Khas.), _Camellia, Elaeocarpus, Buddleia,_ etc. Large bees'
nests hang from the rocks.]

There is some cultivation here of potatoes, and of _Rhysicosia
vestita_ a beautiful purple-flowered leguminous plant, with small
tuberous roots. Beyond this, a high ridge is gained above the valley
of the Boga-panee, the largest river in the Khasia; from this the
Bhotan Himalaya may be seen in clear weather, at the astonishing
distance of from 160 to 200 miles! The vegetation here suddenly
assumes a different aspect, from the quantity of stunted fir-trees
clothing the north side of the valley, which rises very steeply 1000
feet above the river: quite unaccountably, however, not one grows on
the south face. A new oak also appears abundantly; it has leaves like
the English, whose gnarled habit it also assumes.

The descent is very steep, and carried down a slope of greenstone;*
[This greenstone decomposes into a thick bed of red clay; it is much
intersected by fissures or cleavage planes at all angles, whose
surfaces are covered with a shining polished superficial layer; like
the fissures in the cleavage planes of the gneiss granite of
Kinchinjhow, whose adjacent surfaces are coated with a glassy waved
layer of hornblende. This polishing of the surfaces is generally
attributed to their having been in contact and rubbed together, an
explanation which is wholly unsatisfactory to me; no such motion
could take place in cleavage planes which often intersect, and were
it to occur, it would not produce two polished surfaces of an
interposed layer of a softer mineral. It is more probably due to
metamorphic action.] the road then follows. a clear affluent of the
Boga-panee, and afterwards winds along the margin of that river,
which is a rapid turbulent stream, very muddy, and hence contrasting
remarkably with the Kala-panee. It derives its mud from the
decomposition of granite, which is washed by the natives for iron,
and in which rock it rises to the eastward. Thick beds of slate crop
out by the roadside (strike north-east and dip north-west), and are
continued along the bed of the river, passing into conglomerates,
chert, purple slates, and crystalline sandstones, with pebbles, and
angular masses of schist. Many of these rocks are much crumpled,
others quite flat, and they are overlaid by soft, variegated gneiss,
which is continued alternately with the slates to the top of the
hills on the opposite side.

Small trees of hornbeam grow near the river, with _Rhus, Xanthoxylon,
Vaccinium, Gualtheria,_ and _Spiraea,_ while many beautiful ferns,
mosses, and orchids cover the rocks. An elegant iron suspension-
bridge is thrown across the stream, from a rock matted with tufts of
little parasitic _Orchideae._ Crossing it, we came on many
pine-trees; these had five-years' old cones on them, as well as those
of all succeeding years; they bear male flowers in autumn, which
impregnate the cones formed the previous year. Thus, the cones formed
in the spring of 1850 are fertilised in the following autumn, and do
not ripen their seeds till the second following autumn, that of 1852.

A very steep ascent leads to the bungalow of Moflong, on a broad,
bleak hill-top, near the axis of the range (alt. 6,062 feet). Here
there is a village, and some cultivation, surrounded by hedges of
_Erythrina, Pieris, Viburnum,_ _Pyres, Colquhounia,_ and
_Corylopsis,_ amongst which grew an autumn-flowering lark-spur, with
most foetid flowers.* [There is a wood a mile to the west of the
bungalow, worth visiting by the botanist: besides yew, oak, _Sabia_
and _Camellia,_ it contains _Olea, Euonymus,_ and _Sphaerocarya,_ a
small tree that bears a green pear-shaped sweet fruit, with a large
stone: it is pleasant, but leaves a disagreeable taste in the mouth.
On the grassy flats an _Astragalus_ occurs, and _Roscoea purpurea,
Tofieldia,_ and various other fine plants are common.] The rocks are
much contorted slates and gneiss (strike north-east and dip
south-east). In a deep gulley to the northward, greenstone appears,
with black basalt and jasper, the latter apparently altered gneiss:
beyond this the rocks strike the opposite way, but are much disturbed.

We passed the end of June here, and experienced the same violent
weather, thunder, lightning, gales, and rain, which prevailed during
every midsummer I spent in India. A great deal of _Coix_ (Job's
tears) is cultivated about Moflong: it is of a dull greenish purple,
and though planted in drills, and carefully hoed and weeded, is a
very ragged crop. The shell of the cultivated sort is soft, and the
kernel is sweet; whereas the wild _Coix_ is so hard that it cannot be
broken by the teeth. Each plant branches two or three times from the
base, and from seven to nine plants grow in each square yard of soil:
the produce is small, not above thirty or forty fold.

From a hill behind Moflong bungalow, on which are some stone altars,
a most superb view is obtained of the Bhotan Himalaya to the
northward, their snowy peaks stretching in a broken series from north
17 degrees east to north 35 degrees west; all are below the horizon
of the spectator, though from 17,000 to 20,000 feet above his level.
The finest view in the Khasia mountains, and perhaps a more extensive
one than has ever before been described, is that from Chillong hill,
the culminant point of the range, about six miles north-east from
Moflong bungalow. This hill, 6,660 feet above the sea, rises from an
undulating grassy country, covered with scattered trees and
occasional clumps of wood; the whole scenery about being park-like,
and as little like that of India at so low an elevation as it is
possible to be.

I visited Chillong in October with Lieutenant Cave; starting from
Churra, and reaching the bungalow, two miles from its top, the same
night, with two relays of ponies, which he had kindly provided.
We were unfortunate in not obtaining a brilliant view of the snowy
mountains, their tops being partially clouded; but the _coup d'oeil_
was superb. Northward, beyond the rolling Khasia hills, lay the whole
Assam valley, seventy miles broad, with the Burrampooter winding
through it, fifty miles distant, reduced to a thread. Beyond this,
banks of hazy vapour obscured all but the dark range of the Lower
Himalaya, crested by peaks of frosted silver, at the immense distance
of from 100 to 220 miles from Chillong. All are below the horizon of
the observer; yet so false is perspective, that they seem high in the
air. The mountains occupy sixty degrees of the horizon, and stretch
over upwards of 250 miles, comprising the greatest extent of snow
visible from any point with which I am acquainted.

Westward from Chillong the most distant Garrow hills visible are
about forty miles off; and eastward those of Cachar, which are
loftier, are about seventy miles. To the south the view is limited by
the Tipperah hills, which, where nearest, are 100 miles distant;
while to the south-west lies the sea-like Gangetic delta, whose
horizon, lifted by refraction, must be fully 120. The extent of this
view is therefore upwards of 340 miles in one direction, and the
visible horizon of the observer encircles an area of fully thirty
thousand square miles, which is greater than that of Ireland!

Scarlet-flowered rhododendron bushes cover the north side of
Chillong,* [These skirt a wood of prickly bamboo, in which occur fig,
laurel, _Aralia, Boemeria, Smilax, Toddalia,_ wild cinnamon, and
three kinds of oak.] whilst the south is grassy and quite bare; and
except some good _Orchideae_ on the trees, there is little to reward
the botanist. The rocks appeared to be sandstone at the summit, but
micaceous gneiss all around.

Continuing northward from Moflong, the road, after five miles, dips
into a very broad and shallow flat-floored valley, fully a mile
across, which resembles a lake-bed: it is bounded by low hills, and
is called "Lanten-tannia," and is bare of aught but long grass and
herbs; amongst these are the large groundsel (_Senecio_), _Dipsacus,
Ophelia,_ and _Campanula._ On its south flank the micaceous slates
strike north-east, and dip north-west, and on the top repose beds, a
foot in thickness, of angular water-worn gravel, indicating an
ancient water-level, 400 feet above the floor of the valley.
Other smaller lake-beds, in the lateral valleys, are equally evident.

A beautiful blue-flowered _Clitoria_ creeps over the path, with the
ground-raspberry of Dorjiling. From the top a sudden descent of 400
feet leads to another broad flat valley, called "Syong" (elevation,
5,725 feet), in which is a good bungalow, surrounded by hedges of
_Prinsepia utilis,_ a common north-west Himalayan plant, only found
at 8000 feet in Sikkim. The valley is grassy, but otherwise bare.
Beyond this the road passes over low rocky hills, wooded on their
north or sheltered flanks only, dividing flat-floored valleys: a red
sandy gneiss is the prevalent rock, but boulders of syenite are
scattered about. Extensive moors (elevation, 6000 feet) succeed,
covered with stunted pines, brake, and tufts of harsh grasses.*
[These are principally _Andropogon_ and _Brachypodium,_ amongst which
grow yellow _Corydalis, Thalictrum, Anemone, Parnassia, Prunella,_
strawberry, _Eupatorium, Hypericum,_ willow, a _Polygonum_ like
_Bistorta, Osmunda regalis_ and another species _Lycopodium alpinum,_
a _Senecio_ like _Jacobaea,_ thistles, _Gnaphalium,_ Gentians, _Iris,
Paris, Sanguisorba_ and _Agrimonia._]

Near the Dengship-oong (river), which flows in a narrow valley, is a
low dome of gneiss altered by syenite. The prevalent dip is uniformly
south-east, and the strike north-east; and detached boulders of
syenite become more frequent, resting on a red gneiss, full of black
garnets, till the descent to the valley of Myrung, one of the most
beautiful spots in the Khasia, and a favourite resort, having an
excellent bungalow which commands a superb view of the Himalaya:
it is 5,650 feet above the sea, and is placed on the north flank of a
very shallow marshy valley, two miles broad, and full of rice
cultivation, as are the flat heads of all the little valleys that
lead into it. There is a guard here of light infantry, and a little
garden, boasting a gardener and some tea-plants, so that we had
vegetables during our four visits to the place, on two of which
occasions we stayed some days.

From Kala-panee to Myrung, a distance of thirty-two miles, the road
does not vary 500 feet above or below the mean level of 5,700 feet,
and the physical features are the same throughout, of broad
flat-floored, steep-sided valleys, divided by bleak, grassy,
tolerably level-topped bills. Beyond Myrung the Khasia mountains
slope to the southward in rolling loosely-wooded hills, but the spurs
do not dip suddenly till beyond Nunklow, eight miles further north.

On the south side of the Myrung valley is Nungbree wood, a dense
jungle, occupying, like all the other woods, the steep north exposure
of the hill; many good plants grow in it, including some gigantic
_Balanophorae, Pyrola,_ and _Monotropa._ The bungalow stands on soft,
contorted, decomposing gneiss, which is still the prevalent rock,
striking north-east. On the hills to the east of it, enormous hard
blocks lie fully exposed, and are piled on one another, as if so
disposed by glacial action; and it is difficult to account for them
by denudation, though their surface scales, and similar blocks are
scattered around Myrung exactly similar to the syenite blocks of
Nunklow, and the granite ones of Nonkreem, to be described hereafter,
and which are undoubtedly due to the process of weathering. A great
mass of flesh-coloured crystalline granite rises in the centre of the
valley, to the east of the road: it is fissured in various
directions, and the surface scales concentrically; it is obscurely
stratified in some parts, and appears to be half granite and half
gneiss in mineralogical character.

We twice visited a very remarkable hill, called Kollong, which rises
as a dome of granite 5,400 feet high, ten or twelve miles south-west
of Myrung, and conspicuous from all directions. The path to it turns
off from that to Nunklow, and strikes westerly along the shallow
valley of Monai, in which is a village, and much rice and other
cultivation. Near this there is a large square stockade, formed of
tall bamboos placed close together, very like a New Zealand "Pa;"
indeed, the whole country hereabouts much recalls the grassy clay
hills, marshy valleys, and bushy ridges of the Bay of Islands.
The hills on either side are sometimes dotted with pinewoods,
sometimes conical and bare, with small clumps of pines on the summit
only; while in other places are broad tracts containing nothing but
young trees, resembling plantations, but which, I am assured, are not
planted; on the other hand, however, Mr. Yule states, that the
natives do plant fir-trees, especially near the iron forges, which
give employment to all the people of Monai.

All the streams rise in flat marshy depressions amongst the hills
with which the whole country is covered; and both these features,
together with the flat clay marshes into which the rivers expand, are
very suggestive of tidal action. Rock is hardly anywhere seen, except
in the immediate vicinity of Kollong, where are many scattered
boulders of fine-grained gneiss, of which are made the broad stone
slabs, placed as seats, and the other erections of this singular
people. We repeatedly remarked cones of earth, clay, and pebbles,
about twelve feet high, upon the hills, which appeared to be
artificial, but of which the natives could give no explanation.
Wild apple and birch are common trees, but there is little jungle,
except in the hollows, and on the north slopes of the higher hills.
Coarse long grass, with bushes of Labiate and Composite plants, are
the prevalent features.

Kollong rock is a steep dome of red granite,* [This granite is highly
crystalline, and does not scale or flake, nor is its surface
polished.] accessible from the north and east, but almost
perpendicular to the southward, where the slope is 80 degrees for 600
feet. The elevation is 400 feet above the mean level of the
surrounding ridges, and 700 above the bottom of the valleys.
The south or steepest side is encumbered with enormous detached
blocks, while the north is clothed with a dense forest, containing
red tree-rhododendrons and oaks; on its skirts grew a white bushy
rhododendron, which we found nowhere else. The hard granite of the
top was covered with matted mosses, lichens, Lycopodiums, and ferns,
amongst which were many curious and beautiful airplants.* [_Eria,
Coelogyne_ (_Wallichii, maculata,_ and _elata_), _Cymbidium,
Dendrobium, Sunipia_ some of them flowering profusely; and though
freely exposed to the sun and wind, dews and frosts, rain and
droughts, they were all fresh, bright, green and strong, under very
different treatment from that to which they are exposed in the damp,
unhealthy, steamy orchid-houses of our English gardens. A wild onion
was most abundant all over the top of the hill, with _Hymenopogon,
Vaccinium, Ophiopogon, Anisadenia, Commelyna, Didymocarpus,
Remusatia, Hedychium,_ grass and small bamboos, and a good many other
plants. Many of the lichens were of European kinds; but the mosses
(except _Bryum argenteum_) and ferns were different. A small
_Staphylinus,_ which swarmed under the sods, was the only insect
I remarked.]

Illustration--KOLLONG ROCK.

The view from the top is very extensive to the northward, but not
elsewhere: it commands the Assam valley and the Himalaya, and the
billowy range of undulating grassy Khasia mountains. Few houses were
visible, but the curling smoke from the valleys betrayed their
lurking-places, whilst the tinkling sound of the hammers from the
distant forges on all sides was singularly musical and pleasing; they
fell on the ear like "bells upon the wind," each ring being
exquisitely melodious, and chiming harmoniously with the others.
The solitude and beauty of the scenery, and the emotions excited by
the music of chimes, tended to tranquillise our minds, wearied by the
fatigues of travel, and the excitement of pursuits that required
unremitting attention; and we rested for some time, our imaginations
wandering to far-distant scenes, brought vividly to our minds by
these familiar sounds.


View of Himalaya from the Khasia -- Great masses of snow -- Chumulari
-- Donkia -- Grasses -- Nunklow -- Assam valley and Burrampooter --
Tropical forest -- Borpanee -- Rhododendrons -- Wild elephants --
Blocks of Syenite -- Return to Churra -- Coal -- August temperature
-- Leave for Chela -- Jasper hill -- Birds -- _Arundina_ -- Habits of
leaf-insects -- Curious village -- Houses -- Canoes -- Boga-panee
river -- Jheels -- Chattuc -- Churra -- Leave for Jyntea hills --
Trading parties -- Dried fish -- Cherries -- Cinnamon -- Fraud --
Pea-violet -- Nonkreem -- Sandstone -- Pines -- Granite boulders --
Iron washing -- Forges -- Tanks -- Siberian _Nymphaea_ -- Barren
country -- Pomrang -- _Podostemon_ -- Patchouli plant -- Mooshye --
Enormous stone slabs -- Pitcher-plant -- Joowye cultivation and
vegetation -- _Hydropeltis_ -- Sulky hostess -- Nurtiung --
_Hamamelis chinensis_ -- Bor-panee river -- Sacred grove and gigantic
stone structures -- Altars -- Pyramids, etc. -- Origin of names --
_Vanda coerulea_ -- Collections -- November vegetation -- Geology of
Khasia -- Sandstone -- Coal -- Lime -- Gneiss -- Greenstone -- Tidal
action -- Strike of rocks -- Comparison with Rajmahal hills and the

The snowy Himalaya was not visible during our first stay at Myrung,
from the 5th to the 10th of July; but on three subsequent occasions,
viz., 27th and 28th of July, 13th to 17th October, and 22nd to 25th
October, we saw these magnificent mountains, and repeatedly took
angular heights and bearings of the principal peaks. The range, as
seen from the Khasia, does not form a continuous line of snowy
mountains, but the loftiest eminences are conspicuously grouped into
masses, whose position is probably between the great rivers which
rise far beyond them and flow through Bhotan. This arrangement
indicates that relation of the rivers to the masses of snow, which I
have dwelt upon in the Appendix;  and further tends to prove that the
snowy mountains, seen from the southward, are not on the axis of a
mountain chain, and do not even indicate its position; but that they
are lofty meridional spurs which, projecting southward, catch the
moist vapours, become more deeply snowed, and protect the dry loftier
regions behind.

The most conspicuous group of snows seen from the Khasia bears N.N.E.
from Myrung, and consists of three beautiful mountains with
wide-spreading snowy shoulders. These are distant (reckoning from
west to east) respectively 164, 170, and 172 miles from Myrung, and
subtend angles of + 0 degrees 4 minutes 0 seconds, - 0 degrees 1
minute 30 seconds, and -0 degrees 2 minutes 28 seconds.* [These
angles were taken both at sunrise and sunset, and with an excellent
theodolite, and were repeated after two considerable intervals.
The telescopes were reversed after each observation, and every
precaution used to insure accuracy; nevertheless the mean of one set
of observations of angular height often varied 1 degree from that of
another set. This is probably much due to atmospheric refraction,
whose effect and amount it is impossible to estimate accurately in
such cases. Here the objects are not only viewed through 160 miles of
atmosphere, but through belts from between 6000 to 20,000 feet of
vertical height, varying in humidity and transparency at different
parts of the interval. If we divide this column of atmosphere into
sections parallel to those of latitude, we have first a belt fifteen
miles broad, hanging over the Khasia, 2000 to 4000 feet above the
sea; beyond it, a second belt, seventy miles broad, hangs over the
Assam valley, which is hardly 300 feet above the level of the sea;
and thirdly, the northern part of the column, which reposes on 60 to
100 miles of the Bhotan lower Himalaya: each of these belts has
probably a different refractive power.] From Nunklow (940 feet lower
than Myrung) they appear higher, the western peak rising 14 degrees
35 minutes above the horizon; whilst from Moflong (32 miles further
south, and elevation 6,062 feet) the same is sunk 2 degrees below the
horizon. My computations make this western mountain upwards of 24,000
feet high; but according to Col. Wilcox's angles, taken from the
Assam valley, it is only 21,600, the others being respectively 20,720
and 21,475. Captain Thuillier (the Deputy Surveyor General) agrees
with me in considering that Colonel Wilcox's altitudes are probably
much  under-estimated, as those of other Himalayan peaks to the
westward were by the old surveyors. It is further evident that these
mountains have (as far as can be estimated by angles) fully 6-8000
feet of snow on them, which would not be the case were the loftiest
only 21,600 feet high.

It is singular, that to the eastward of this group, no snowy
mountains are seen, and the lower Himalaya also dip suddenly.
This depression is no doubt partly due to perspective; but as there
is no such sudden disappearance of the chain to the westward, where
peaks are seen 35 degrees to the west of north, it is far more
probable that the valley of the Soobansiri river, which rises in
Tibet far behind these peaks, is broad and open; as is that of the
Dihong, still farther east, which we have every reason to believe is
the Tibetan Yaru or Burrampooter.

Supposing then the eastern group to indicate the mountain mass
separating the Soobansiri from the Monass river, no other mountains
conspicuous for altitude or dimension rise between N.N.E. and north,
where there is another immense group. This, though within 120 miles
of Myrung, is below its horizon, and scarcely above that of Nunklow
(which is still nearer to it), and cannot therefore attain any
great elevation.

Far to the westward again, is a very lofty peaked mountain bearing
N.N.W., which subtends an angle of -3 degrees 30 minutes from Myrung,
and +6 degrees 0 minutes from Nunklow. The angles of this seem to
indicate its being either Chumulari, or that great peak which I saw
due east from Bbomtso top, and which I then estimated at ninety miles
off and 23,500 feet high. From the Khasia angles, its latitude and
longitude are 28 degrees 6 minutes and 89 degrees 30 minutes, its
elevation 27,000 feet, and its distance from Myrung 200 miles. I need
hardly add  that neither the position nor the elevation computed from
such data is worthy of confidence.

Further still, to the extreme west, is an immense low hog-backed mass
of snow, with a small peak on it; this bears north-west, both from
Myrung and Nunklow, subtending an angle of -25 minutes from the
former, and -17 minutes from the latter station. It is in all
probability Chumulari, 210 miles distant from Nunklow. Donkia, if
seen, would be distant 230 miles from the same spot in the Khasia,
and Kinchinjunga 260; possibly they are visible (by refraction) from
Chillong, though even further from it.

The distance from Myrung to Nunklow is ten miles, along an excellent
road. The descent is at first sudden, beyond which the country is
undulating, interspersed with jungle (of low trees, chiefly oaks) and
marshes, with much rice cultivation. Grasses are exceedingly
numerous; we gathered fifty kinds, besides twenty _Cyperaceae_: four
were cultivated, namely sugar-cane, rice, _Coix,_ and maize. Most of
the others were not so well suited to pasturage as those of higher
localities. Dwarf Phoenix palm occurs by the roadside at 5000 feet

Gneiss (with garnets) highly inclined, was the prevalent rock
(striking north-east), and scattered boulders of syenite became very
frequent. In one place the latter rock is seen bursting through the
gneiss, which is slaty and very crystalline at the junction.

Nunklow is placed at the northern extremity of a broad spur that
over-hangs the valley of the Burrampooter river, thirty miles
distant. The descent from it is very rapid, and beyond it none of the
many spurs thrown out by the Khasia attain more than 1000 feet
elevation; hence, though the range does not present so abrupt a  face
to the Burrampooter as it does to the Jheels, Nunklow is considered
as on the brink of its north slope. The elevation of the bungalow is
4,688 feet, and the climate being hot, it swarms with mosquitos,
fleas, and rats. It commands a superb view to the north, of the
Himalayan snows, of the Burrampooter, and intervening malarious Terai
forest; and to the south, of the undulating Khasia, with Kollong rock
bearing south-west. All the hills between this and Myrung look from
Nunklow better wooded than they do from Myrung, in consequence of the
slopes exposed to the south being bare of forest.

A thousand feet below the bungalow, a tropical forest begins, of
figs, birch, horse-chestnut, oak, nutmeg. _Cedrela, Engelhardtia,
Artocarpeae,_ and _Elaeocarpus,_ in the gullies, and tall pines on
the dry slopes, which are continued down to the very bottom of the
valley in which flows the Bor-panee, a broad and rapid river that
descends from Chillong, and winds round the base of the Nunklow spur.
Many of the pines are eighty feet high, and three or four in
diameter, but none form gigantic trees. The quantity of balsams in
the wet ravines is very great, and tree-ferns of several kinds are

The Bor-panee is about forty yards wide, and is spanned by an elegant
iron suspension-bridge, that is clamped to the gneiss rock (strike
north-east, dip north-west) on either bank; beneath is a series of
cascades, none high, but all of great beauty from the broken masses
of rocks and picturesque scenery on either side. We frequently
botanised up and down the river with great success: many curious
plants grow on its stony and rocky banks; and amongst them
_Rhododendron formosum_ at the low elevation of 2000 feet. A most
splendid fern, _Dipteris Wallichii,_ is abundant, with the dwarf
Phoenix palm and _Cycas pectinata._

Wild animals are very abundant here, though extremely rare on the
higher part of the Khasia range; tigers, however, and bears, ascend
to Nunklow. We saw troops of wild dogs ("Kuleam," Khas.), deer, and
immense quantities of the droppings of the wild elephant; an animal
considered in Assam dangerous to meet, whereas in other parts of
India it is not dreaded till provoked. There is, however, no
quadruped that varies more in its native state than this: the Ceylon
kind differs from the Indian in the larger size and short tusks, and
an experienced judge at Calcutta will tell at once whether the newly
caught elephant is from Assam, Silhet, Cuttack, Nepal, or Chittagong.
Some of the differences, in size, roundness of shoulders and back,
quantity of hair, length of limb, and shape of head, are very marked;
and their dispositions are equally various.

The lowest rocks seen are at a considerable distance down the
Bor-panee; they are friable sandstones that strike uniformly with the
gneiss. From the bridge upwards the rocks are all gneiss, alternating
with chert and quartz. The Nunklow spur is covered with enormous
rounded blocks of syenite, reposing on clay or on one another.
These do not descend the hill, and are the remains of an extensive
formation which we could only find _in situ_ at one spot on the road
to Myrung (see earlier), but which must have been of immense
thickness.* [The tendency of many volcanic rocks to decompose in
spheres is very well known: it is conspicuous in the black basalts
north of Edinburgh, but I do not know any instance equal to this of
Nunklow, for the extent of decomposition and dimensions of the
resulting spheres.] One block within ten yards of the bungalow door
was fifteen feet long, six high, and eight broad; it appeared half
buried, and was rapidly decomposing from the action of the rain.
Close by, to the westward, in walking amongst the masses we  were
reminded of a moraine of most gigantic sized blocks; one which I
measured was forty feet long and eleven above the ground; its edges
were rounded, and its surface flaked off in pieces a foot broad and a
quarter of an inch thick. Trees and brushwood often conceal the
spaces between these fragments, and afford dens for bears and
leopards, into which man cannot follow them.

Sitting in the cool evenings on one of these great blocks, and
watching the Himalayan glaciers glowing with the rays of sunset,
appearing to change in form and dimensions with the falling shadows,
it was impossible to refrain from speculating on the possibility of
these great boulders heaped on the Himalayan-ward face of the Khasia
range, having been transported hither by ice at some former period;
especially as the Mont Blanc granite, in crossing the lake of Geneva
to the Jura, must have performed a hardly less wonderful ice journey:
but this hypothesis is clearly untenable; and unparalleled in our
experience as the results appear, if attributed to denudation and
weathering alone, we are yet compelled to refer them to these causes.
The further we travel, and the longer we study, the more positive
becomes the conviction that the part played by these great agents in
sculpturing the surface of our planet, is as yet but half recognised.

We returned on the 7th of August to Churra, where we employed
ourselves during the rest of the month in collecting and studying the
plants of the neighbourhood. We hired a large and good bungalow, in
which three immense coal fires* [This coal is excellent for many
purposes. We found it generally used by the Assam steamers, and were
informed on board that in which we traversed the Sunderbunds, some
months afterwards, that her furnaces consumed 729 lbs. per hour;
whereas the consumption of English coal was 800 lbs., of Burdwan coal
8401bs., and of Assam 900 lbs.] were kept up for drying plants and
papers, and fifteen men were always employed, some in changing, and
some in collecting, from morning till night. The coal was procured
within a mile of our door, and cost about six shillings a month; it
was of the finest quality, and gave great heat and few ashes.
Torrents of rain descended almost daily, twelve inches in as many
hours being frequently registered; and we remarked that it was
impossible to judge of the quantity by estimation, an apparent deluge
sometimes proving much less in amount than much lighter but steadier
falls; hence the greatest fall is probably that in which the drops
are moderately large; very close together, and which pass through a
saturated atmosphere. The temperature of the rain here and elsewhere
in India was always a degree or two below that of the air.

Though the temperature in August rose to 75 degrees, we never felt a
fire oppressive, owing to the constant damp, and absence of sun.
The latter, when it broke through the clouds, shone powerfully,
raising the thermometer 20 degrees and 30 degrees in as many minutes.
On such occasions, hot blasts of damp wind ascend the valleys, and
impinge suddenly against different houses on the flat, giving rise to
extraordinary differences between the mean daily temperatures of
places not half a mile apart.

On the 4th of September we started for the village of Chela, which
lies west from Churra, at the embouchure of the Boga-panee on the
Jheels. The path runs by Mamloo, and down the spur to the Jasper hill
(see chapter xxviii): the vegetation all along is very tropical, and
pepper, ginger, maize, and Betel palm, are cultivated around small
cottages, which are only distinguishable in the forest by their
yellow thatch of dry _Calamus_ (Rattan) leaves. From Jasper hill a
very steep ridge leads to another, called Lisouplang, which is
hardly so high as Mamloo; the rocks are the same sandstone, with
fragments of coal, and remains of the limestone formation capping it.

Hot gusts of wind blow up the valleys, alternating with clouds and
mists, and it is curious to watch the effects of the latter in
stilling the voices of insects (Cicadas) and birds. Common crows and
vultures haunt the villages, but these, and all other large birds,
are very rare in the Khasia. A very few hawks are occasionally seen,
also sparrows and kingfishers, and I once heard a cuckoo; pheasants
are sometimes shot, but we never saw any. Kites become numerous after
the rains, and are regarded as a sign of their cessation.
More remarkable than the rarity of birds is the absence of all
animals except domestic rats, as a more suitable country for hares
and rabbits could not be found. Reptiles, and especially Colubridae,
are very common in the Khasia mountains, and I procured sixteen
species and many specimens. The natives repeatedly assured us that
these were all harmless, and Dr. Gray, who has kindly examined all my
snakes, informs me of the remarkable fact (alluded to in a note in
chapter xviii), that whereas none of these are poisonous, four out of
the eleven species which I found in Sikkim are so. One of the Khasia
blind-worms (a new species) belongs to a truly American genus
(_Ophisaurus_), a fact as important as is that of the Sikkim skink
and _Agama_ being also American forms.

_Arundina,_ a beautiful purple grassy-leaved orchid, was abundantly
in flower on the hill-top, and the great white swallow-tailed moth
(_Saturnia Atlas_) was extremely common, with tropical butterflies
and other insects. The curious leaf-insect (_Mantis_) was very
abundant on the orange trees, on the leaves of which the natives
believe  it to feed; nor indeed could we persuade some of our friends
that its thin sharp jaws are unsuited for masticating leaves, and
that these and its prehensile feet indicate its predacious nature:
added to which, its singular resemblance to a leaf is no less a
provision against its being discovered by its enemies, than an aid in
deceiving its prey.

We descended rapidly for many miles through beautiful rocky woods,
with villages nestling amongst groves of banana and trellised
climbers; and from the brow of a hill looked down upon a slope
covered with vegetation and huts, which formed the mart of Chela, and
below which the Boga-panee flowed in a deep gorge. The view was a
very striking one: owing to the steepness of the valley below our
feet, the roofs alone of the cottages were visible, from which
ascended the sounds and smells of a dense native population, and to
which there appeared to be no way of descending. The opposite side
rose precipitously in lofty table-topped mountains, and the river was
studded with canoes.

The descent was fully 800 feet, on a slope averaging 25 degrees to 35
degrees. The cottages were placed close together, each within a
little bamboo enclosure, eight to ten yards deep; and no two were on
the same level. Each was built against a perpendicular wall which
supported a cutting in the bank behind; and a similar wall descended
in front of it, forming the back of the compartment in which the
cottage next below it was erected. The houses were often raised on
platforms, and some had balconies in front, which overhung the
cottage below. All were mere hovels of wattle or mud, with very
high-pitched roofs: stone tanks resembling fonts, urns, coffins, and
sarcophagi, were placed near the better houses, and blocks of stone
were scattered everywhere.

We descended from hovel to hovel, alternately along the gravelled
flat of each enclosure, and perpendicularly down steps cut in the
sandstone or let into the walls. I counted 800 houses from the river,
and there must be many more: the inhabitants are Bengalees and
Khasias, and perhaps amount to 3000 or 4000; but this is a very
vague estimate.

Illustration--CHELA VILLAGE.

We lodged in a curious house, consisting of one apartment, twenty
feet long, and five high, raised thirty feet upon bamboos: the walls
were of platted bamboo matting, fastened to strong wooden beams, and
one side opened on a balcony that overhung the river. The entrance
was an oval aperture reached by a ladder, and closed by folding-doors
that turned on wooden pivots.  The roof was supported by tressels of
great thickness, and like the rest of the woodwork, was morticed, no
nails being used throughout the building. The floor was of split
bamboos laid side by side.

We ascended the Boga-panee in canoes, each formed of a hollowed trunk
fifty feet long and four broad; we could not, however, proceed far,
on account of the rapids. The rocks in its bed are limestone, but a
great bluff cliff of sandy conglomerate (strike east-south-east and
dip south-south-west 70 degrees), several hundred feet high, rises on
the east bank close above the village, above which occurs
amygdaloidal basalt. The pebbles in the river (which was seventy
yards broad, and turbid) were of slate, basalt, sandstone, and
syenite: on the opposite bank were sandstones over-lain by limestone,
both dipping to the southward.

Beautiful palms, especially _Caryota urens_ (by far the handsomest in
India), and groves of betel-nut bordered the river, with oranges,
lemons, and citrons; intermixed with feathery bamboos,
horizontally-branched acacias, oaks, with pale red young leaves, and
deep green foliaged figs. Prickly rattans and _Plectocomia_ climbed
amongst these, their enormous plumes of foliage upborne by the matted
branches of the trees, and their arrowy tops shooting high above the

After staying three days at Chela, we descended the stream in canoes,
shooting over pebbly rapids, and amongst rocks of limestone,
water-worn into fantastic shapes, till we at last found ourselves
gliding gently along the still canals of the Jheels. Many of these
rapids are so far artificial, that they are enclosed by gravel banks,
six feet high, which, by confining the waters, give them depth; but,
Chela being hardly above the level of the sea, their fall is  very
trifling. We proceeded across the Jheels* [The common water-plants of
the Jheels are _Vallisneria serrata, Damasonium,_ 2 _Myriophylla,_ 2
_Villarsiae, Trapa,_ blue, white, purple and scarlet water-lilies,
_Hydrilla, Utricularia, Limnophila, Azolla, Salvinia, Ceratopteris,_
and floating grasses.] to Chattuc, and then north again to Pundua,
and so to Churra.

Having pretty well exhausted the botany of Churra, Dr. Thomson and I
started on the 13th of September for the eastern part of the Khasia
and Jyntea mountains. On the Kala-panee road,* [The Pea-violet
(_Crotalaria occulta_) was very common by the road-side, and
smelt deliciously of violets: the English name suggests the
appearance of the flower, for which and for its fragrance it is well
worth cultivation.] which we followed, we passed crowds of market
people, laden with dried fish in a half-putrid state, which scented
the air for many yards: they were chiefly carp, caught and dried at
the foot of the hills. Large parties were bringing down baskets of
bird-cherries, cinnamon-bark, iron, pine planks, fire-wood, and
potatoes. Of these, the bird-cherries (like damsons) are made into an
excellent preserve by the English residents, who also make capital
cherry-brandy of them: the trade in cinnamon is of recent
introduction, and is much encouraged by the Inglis family, to whose
exertions these people are so greatly indebted; the cinnamon is the
peeled bark of a small species of _Cinnamomum_ allied to that of
Ceylon, and though inferior in flavour and mucilaginous (like
cassia), finds a ready market at Calcutta. It has been used to
adulterate the Ceylon cinnamon; and an extensive fraud was attempted
by some Europeans at Calcutta, who sent boxes of this, with a top
layer of the genuine, to England. The smell of the cinnamon loads was
as fragrant as that of the fish was offensive.

The road from Kala-panee bungalow strikes off north-easterly, and
rounds the head of the deep valley to the east of Churra; it then
crosses the head-waters of the  Kala-panee river, still a clear
stream, the bed of which is comparatively superficial: the rocks
consist of a little basalt and much sandstone, striking east by
north, and dipping north by west. The Boga-panee is next reached,
flowing in a shallow valley, about 200 feet below the general level
of the hills, which are grassy and treeless. The river8 [The fall of
this river, between this elevation (which may be considered that of
its source) and Chela, is about 5,500 feet.] is thirty yards across,
shallow and turbid; its bed is granite, and beyond it scattered
stunted pines are met with; a tree which seems to avoid the
sandstone. In the evening we arrived at Nonkreem, a large village in
a broad marshy valley, where we procured accommodation with some
difficulty, the people being by no means civil, and the Rajah, Sing
Manuk, holding himself independent of the British Government.

Atmospheric denudation and weathering have produced remarkable
effects on the lower part of the Nonkreem valley, which is blocked up
by a pine-crested hill, 200 feet high, entirely formed of round
blocks of granite, heaped up so as to resemble an old moraine; but
like the Nunklow boulders, these are not arranged as if by glacial
action. The granite is micaceous, and usually very soft, decomposing
into a coarse reddish sand, that colours the Boga-panee. To procure
the iron-sand, which is disseminated through it, the natives conduct
water over the beds of granite sand, and as the lighter particles are
washed away, the remainder is removed to troughs, where the
separation of the ore is completed. The smelting is very rudely
carried on in charcoal fires, blown by enormous double-action
bellows, worked by two persons, who stand on the machine, raising the
flaps with their hands, and expanding them with their feet, as shown
in the cut further on.  There is neither furnace nor flux used in the
reduction. The fire is kindled on one aide of an upright stone (like
the head-stone of a grave), with a small arched hole close to the
ground: near this hole the bellows are suspended; and a bamboo tube
from each of its compartments, meets in a larger one, by which the
draught is directed under the hole in the stone to the fire. The ore
is run into lumps as large as two fists, with a rugged surface: these
lumps are afterwards cleft nearly in two, to show their purity.


The scenery about Nonkreem village is extremely picturesque, and we
procured many good plants on the rocks, which were covered with the
purple-flowered Orchid, _Coelogyne Wallichii._ The country is
everywhere intersected  with trenches for iron-washing, and some
large marshes were dammed up for the same purpose: in these we found
some beautiful balsams, _Hypericum_ and _Parnassia_; also a
diminutive water-lily, the flower of which is no larger than a
half-crown; it proves to be the _Nymphaea pygmaea_ of China and
Siberia--a remarkable fact in the geographical distribution
of plants.


From Nonkreem we proceeded easterly to Pomrang, leaving Chillong hill
on the north, and again crossing the Bega-panee, beyond which the
sandstone appeared (strike  north-east and dip north-west 60
degrees); the soil was poor in the extreme; not an inhabitant or tree
was to be seen throughout the grassy landscape, and hardly a bush,
save an occasional rhododendron, dwarf oak, or _Pieris,_ barely a few
inches high.

At Pomrang we took up our quarters in an excellent empty bungalow,
built by Mr. Stainforth (Judge of Silhet), who kindly allowed us the
use of it. Its elevation was 5,143 feet, and it occupied the eastern
extremity of a lofty spur that overhangs the deep fir-clad valley of
the Oongkot, dividing Khasia from Jyntea. The climate of Pomrang is
so much cooler and less rainy than at Churra, that this place is more
eligible for a station; but the soil is quite impracticable, there is
an occasional scarcity of water, the pasture is wholly unsuited for
cattle or sheep, and the distance from the plains is too great.

A beautiful view extends eastwards to the low Jyntea hills, backed by
the blue mountains of Cachar, over the deep valley in front; to the
northward, a few peaks of the Himalaya are seen, and westward is
Chillong. We staid here till the 23rd September, and then proceeded
south-eastward to Mooshye. The path descends into the valley of the
Oongkot, passing the village of Pomrang, and then through woods of
pine, _Gordonia,_ and oak, the latter closely resembling the English,
and infested with galls. The slopes are extensively cultivated with
black awnless unirrigated rice, and poor crops of _Coix,_ protected
from the birds by scarecrows of lines stretched across the fields,
bearing tassels and tufts of fern, shaken by boys. This fern proved
to be a very curious and interesting genus, which is only known to
occur elsewhere at Hong-Kong in China, and has been called
_Bowringia,_ after the eminent Dr. Bowring.

We crossed the river* [_Podostemom_ grew on the stones at the bottom:
it is a remarkable waterplant, resembling a liver-wort in its mode of
growth. Several species occur at different elevations in the Khasia,
and appear only in autumn, when they often carpet the bottom of the
streams with green. In spring and summer no traces of them are seen;
and it is difficult to conceive what becomes of the seeds in the
interval, and how these, which are well known, and have no apparent
provision for the purpose, attach themselves to the smooth rocks at
the bottom of the torrents. All the kinds flower and ripen their
seeds under water; the stamens and pistil being protected by the
closed flower from the wet. This genus does not inhabit the Sikkim
rivers, probably owing to the great changes of temperature to which
these are subject.] twice, proceeding south-west to Mooshye, a
village placed on an isolated, flat-topped, and very steep-sided
hill, 4,863 feet above the sea, and perhaps 3,500 above the Oongkot,
which winds round its base. A very steep path led up slate rocks to
the top (which was of sandstone), where there is a stockaded
guard-house, once occupied by British troops, of which we took
possession. A Labiate plant (_Mesona Wallichiana_) grew on the
ascent, whose bruised leaves smelt as strongly of patchouli, as do
those of the plant producing that perfume, to which it is closely
allied. The _Pogostemon Patchouli_ has been said to occur in these
parts of India, but we never met with it, and doubt the accuracy of
the statement. It is a native of the Malay peninsula, whence the
leaves are imported into Bengal, and so to Europe.

The summit commands a fine view northward of some Himalayan peaks,
and southwards of the broad valley of the Oongkot, which is level,
and bounded by steep and precipitous hills, with flat tops. On the
25th we left Mooshye for Amwee in Jyntea, which lies to the
south-east. We descended by steps cut in the sandstone, and fording
the Oongkot, climbed the hills on its east side, along the grassy
tops of which we continued, at an elevation of 4000 feet. Marshy
flats intersect the hills, to which wild elephants sometimes ascend,
doing much damage to the rice  crops. We crossed a stream by a bridge
formed of one gigantic block of sandstone, 20 feet long, close to the
village, which is a wretched one, and is considered unhealthy: it
stands on the high road from Jynteapore (at the foot of the hills to
the southward) to Assam: the only road that crosses the mountains
east of that from Churra to Nunklow.

Illustration--OLD BRIDGE AT AMWEE.

Though so much lower, this country, from the barrenness of the soil,
is more thinly inhabited than the Khasia. The pitcher-plant
(_Nepenthes_) grows on stony and grassy hills about Amwee, and crawls
along the ground; its pitchers seldom contain insects in the wild
state, nor can we suggest any special function for the wonderful
organ it possesses.

About eight miles south of the village is a stream, crossed by a
bridge, half of which is formed of slabs of stone (of which one is
twenty-one feet long, seven broad, and two feet three and a half
inches thick), supported on piers, and the rest is a well turned
arch, such as I have not  seen elsewhere among the hill tribes of
India. It is fast crumbling away, and is covered with tropical
plants, and a beautiful white-flowered orchis* [_Diplomeris;
Apostasia_ also grew in this gulley, with a small _Arundina,_ some
beautiful species of _Sonerila,_ and _Argostemma._ The neighbourhood
was very rich in plants.] grew in the mossy crevices of its stones.

From Amwee our route lay north-east across the Jyntea hills to
Joowye, the hill-capital of the district. The path gradually
ascended, dipping into valleys scooped out in the horizontal
sandstone down to the basalt; and boulders of the same rock were
scattered about. Fields of rice occupy the bottoms of these valleys,
in which were placed gigantic images of men, dressed in rags, and
armed with bows and arrows, to scare away the wild elephants! Slate
rocks succeed the sandstone (strike north-east, dip north-west), and
with them pines and birch appear, clothing the deep flanks of the
Mintadoong valley, which we crossed.

The situation of Joowye is extremely beautiful: it occupies the
broken wooded slope of a large open flat valley, dotted with pines;
and consists of an immense number of low thatched cottages, scattered
amongst groves of bamboo, and fields of plantain, tobacco, yams,
sugar-cane, maize, and rice, surrounded by hedges of bamboo,
_Colquhounia,_ and _Erythrina._ Narrow steep lanes lead amongst
these, shaded with oak, birch, _Podocarpus,_ Camellia, and
_Araliaceae_; the larger trees being covered with orchids, climbing
palms, _Pothos, Scindapsus,_ pepper, and _Gnetum_; while masses of
beautiful red and violet balsams grew under every hedge and rock.
The latter was of sandstone, overlying highly inclined schists, and
afforded magnificent blocks for the natives to rear on end, or make
seats of. Some erect stones  on a hill at the entrance are immensely
large, and surround a clump of fine fig and banyan trees.* [In some
tanks we found _Hydropeltis,_ an American and Australian plant allied
to _Nymphaea._ Mr. Griffith first detected it here, and afterwards in
Bhotan, these being the only known habitats for it in the Old World.
It grows with _Typha, Acorus Calamus_ (sweet flag), _Vallisneria,
Potamogeton, Sparganium,_ and other European water-plants.]

We procured a good house after many delays, for the people were far
from obliging; it was a clean, very long cottage, with low thatched
eaves almost touching the ground, and was surrounded by a high bamboo
paling that enclosed out-houses built on a well-swept floor of beaten
earth. Within, the woodwork was carved in curious patterns, and was
particularly well fitted. The old lady to whom it belonged got tired
of us before two days were over, and first tried to smoke us out by a
large fire of green wood at that end of the cottage which she
retained; and afterwards by inviting guests to a supper, with whom
she kept up a racket all night. Her son, a tall, sulky fellow, came
to receive the usual gratuity on our departure, which we made large
to show we bore no ill-will: he, however, behaved so scornfully,
pretending to despise it, that I had no choice but to pocket it
again; a proceeding which was received with shouts of laughter, at
his expense, from a large crowd of bystanders.

On the 30th of September we proceeded north-east from Joowye to
Nurtiung, crossing the watershed of the Jyntea range, which is
granitic, and scarcely raised above the mean level of the hills; it
is about 4,500 feet elevation. To the north the descent is at first
rather abrupt for 500 feet, to a considerable stream, beyond which is
the village of Nurtiung. The country gradually declines hence to the
north-east, in grassy hills;  which to the east become higher and
more wooded: to the west the Khasia are seen, and several Himalayan
peaks to the north.

The ascent to the village from the river is by steps cut in a narrow
cleft of the schist rocks, to a flat, elevated 4,178 feet above the
sea: we here procured a cottage, and found the people remarkably
civil. The general appearance is the same as at Joowye, but there are
here extensive and very unhealthy marshes, whose evil effects we
experienced, in having the misfortune to lose one of our servants by
fever. Except pines, there are few large trees; but the quantity of
species of perennial woody plants contributing to form the jungles is
quite extraordinary: I enumerated 140, of which 60 were trees or
large shrubs above twenty feet high. One of these was the _Hamamelis
chinensis,_ a plant hitherto only known as a native of China.
This, the _Bowringia,_ and the little _Nymphaea,_ are three out of
many remarkable instances of our approach to the eastern
Asiatic flora.

From Nurtiung we walked to the Bor-panee river, sixteen or twenty
miles to the north-east (not the river of that name below Nunklow),
returning the same night; a most fatiguing journey in so hot and damp
a climate. The path lay for the greatest part of the way over grassy
hills of mica-schist, with boulders of granite, and afterwards of
syenite, like those of Nunklow. The descent to the river is through
noble woods of spreading oaks,* [We collected upwards of fifteen
kinds of oak and chesnut in these and the Khasia mountains; many are
magnificent trees, with excellent wood, while others are inferior as
timber.] chesnuts, magnolias, and tall pines: the vegetation is very
tropical, and with the exception of there being no sal, it resembles
that of the dry hills of the Sikkim Terai. The Bor-panee is  forty
yards broad, and turbid; its bed, which is of basalt, is 2,454 feet
above the sea: it is crossed by a raft pulled to and fro by canes.

Nurtiung contains a most remarkable collection of those sepulchral
and other monuments, which form so curious a feature in the scenery
of these mountains and in the habits of their savage population.
They are all placed in a fine grove of trees, occupying a hollow;
where several acres are covered with gigantic, generally circular,
slabs of stone, from ten to twenty-five feet broad, supported five
feet above the ground upon other blocks. For the most part they are
buried in brushwood of nettles and shrubs, but in one place there is
an open area of fifty yards encircled by them, each with a gigantic
headstone behind it. Of the latter the tallest was nearly thirty feet
high, six broad, and two feet eight inches in thickness, and must
have been sunk at least five feet, and perhaps much more, in the
ground. The flat slabs were generally of slate or hornstone; but many
of them, and all the larger ones, were of syenitic granite, split by
heat and cold water with great art. They are erected by dint of sheer
brute strength, the lever being the only aid. Large blocks of syenite
were scattered amongst these wonderful erections.

Splendid trees of _Bombax,_ fig and banyan, overshadowed them: the
largest banyan had a trunk five feet in diameter, clear of the
buttresses, and numerous small trees of _Celtic_ grew out of it, and
an immense flowering tuft of _Vanda caerulea_ (the rarest and most
beautiful of Indian orchids) flourished on one of its limbs. A small
plantain with austere woolly scarlet fruit, bearing ripe seeds, was
planted in this sacred grove, where trees of the most tropical genera
grew mixed with the pine, birch, _Myrica,_ and _Viburnum._

The Nurtiung Stonehenge is no doubt in part religious, as the grove
suggests, and also designed for cremation, the bodies being burnt on
the altars. In the Khasia these upright stones are generally raised
simply as memorials of great events, or of men whose ashes are not
necessarily, though frequently, buried or deposited in hollow stone
sarcophagi near them, and sometimes in an urn placed inside a
sarcophagus, or under horizontal slabs.


The usual arrangement is a row of five, seven, or more erect oblong
blocks with round heads (the highest being placed in the middle), on
which are often wooden discs and cones: more rarely pyramids are
built. Broad slabs for seats are also common by the wayside.
Mr. Yule, who first drew attention to these monuments, mentions one
thirty-two feet by fifteen, and two in thickness; and states that the
sarcophagi (which, however, are rare) formed of four slabs, resemble
a drawing in Bell's Circassia, and descriptions in Irby and Mangles'
Travels in Syria. He adds that many villages derive their names from
these stones, "mau" signifying "stone:" thus "Mausmai" is "the stone
of oath," because, as his native informant said, "there was war
between Churra and Mausmai, and when they made peace, they swore to
it, and placed a stone as a witness;" forcibly recalling the stone
Jacob set up for a pillar, and other passages in the old Testament:
"Mamloo" is "the stone of salt," eating salt from a sword's point
being the Khasia form of oath: "Mauflong" is "the grassy stone,"
etc.* [Notes on the Khasia mountains and people; by Lieutenant H.
Yule, Bengal Engineers. Analogous combinations occur in the south of
England and in Brittany, etc., where similar structures are found.
Thus _maen, man,_ or _men_ is the so-called Druidical name for a
stony, whence _Pen-maen-mawr,_ for "the hill of the big stone,"
_Maen-hayr,_ for the standing stones of Brittany, and _Dol-men,_ °the
table-stone," for a cromlech.] Returning from this grove, we crossed
a stream by a single squared block, twenty-eight feet long, five
broad, and two thick, of gray syenitic granite with large crystals
of felspar.

We left Nurtiung on the 4th of October, and walked to Pomrang, a very
long and fatiguing day's work. The route descends north-west of the
village, and turns due east along bare grassy hills of mica-schist
and slate (strike east and west, and dip north). Near the village of
Lernai oak woods are passed, in which _Vanda coerulea_ grows in
profusion, waving its panicles of azure flowers in the wind. As this
beautiful orchid is at present attracting great attention, from its
high price, beauty, and difficulty of culture, I shall point out how
totally at variance with its native habits, is the cultivation
thought necessary for it in England.* [We collected seven men's loads
of this superb plant for the Royal Gardens at Kew; but owing to
unavoidable accidents and difficulties, few specimens reached England
alive. A gentleman who sent his gardener with us to be shown the
locality, was more successful: he sent one man's load to England on
commission, and though it arrived in a very poor state, it sold for
300 pounds, the individual plants fetching prices varying from 3
pounds to 10 pounds. Had all arrived alive, they would have cleared
1000 pounds. An active collector, with the facilities I possessed,
might easily clear from 2000 pounds to 3000 pounds, in one season, by
the sale of Khasia orchids.] The  dry grassy hills which it inhabits
are elevated 3000 to 4000 feet: the trees are small, gnarled, and
very sparingly leafy, so that the Vanda which grows on their limbs is
fully exposed to sun, rain, and wind. There is no moss or lichen on
the branches with the Vanda, whose roots sprawl over the dry rough
bark. The atmosphere is on the whole humid, and extremely so during
the rains; but there is no damp heat, or stagnation of the air, and
at the flowering season the temperature ranges between 60 degrees and
80 degrees, there is much sunshine, and both air and bark are dry
during the day: in July and August, during the rains, the temperature
is a little higher than above, but in winter it falls much lower, and
hoar-frost forms on the ground. Now this winter's cold, summer's
heat, and autumn's drought, and above all, this constant free
exposure to fresh air and the winds of heaven, are what of all things
we avoid exposing our orchids to in England. It is under these
conditions, however, that all the finer Indian _Orchideae,_ grow, of
which we found _Dendrobium Farmeri, Dalhousianum, Devonianum,_ etc.,
with _Vanda coerulea_; whilst the most beautiful species of
_Coelogyne, Cymbidium, Bolbophyllum,_ and _Cypripedium,_ inhabit cool
climates at elevations above 4000 feet in Khasia, and as high as 6000
to 7000 in Sikkim.

On the following day we turned out our Vanda to dress the specimens
for travelling, and preserve the flowers for botanical purposes.
Of the latter we had 360 panicles, each composed of from six to
twenty-one broad pale-blue  tesselated flowers, three and a half to
four inches across and they formed three piles on the floor of the
verandah, each a yard high: what would we not have given to have been
able to transport a single panicle to a Chiswick fete!

On the 10th of October we sent twenty-four strong mountaineers to
Churra, laden with the collections of the previous month; whilst we
returned to Nonkreem, and crossing the shoulder of Chillong, passed
through the village of Moleem in a north-west direction to the Syong
bungalow. From this we again crossed the range to Nunklow and the
Bor-panee, and returned by Moflong and the Kala-panee to Churra
during the latter part of the month.

In November the vegetation above 4000 feet turns wintry and brown,
the weather becomes chilly, and though the cold is never great,
hoar-frost forms at Churra, and water freezes at Moflong. We prepared
to leave as these signs of winter advanced: we had collected upwards
of 2,500 species, and for the last few weeks all our diligence, and
that of our collectors, had failed to be rewarded by a single
novelty. We however procured many species in fruit, and made a
collection of upwards of 300 kinds of woods, many of very curious
structure. As, however, we projected a trip to Cachar before quitting
the neighbourhood, we retained our collectors, giving orders for them
to meet us at Chattuc, on our way down the Soormah in December, with
their collections, which amounted to 200 men's loads, and for the
conveyance of which to Calcutta, Mr. Inglis procured us boats.

Before dismissing the subject of the Khasia mountains, it will be
well to give a slight sketch of their prominent geographical
features, in connection with their geology. The general geological
characters of the chain may be summed up in a few words. The nucleus
or axis is of  highly inclined stratified metamorphic rocks, through
which the granite has been protruded, and the basalt and syenite
afterwards injected. After extensive denudations of these, the
sandstone, coal, and limestone were successively deposited. These are
altered and displaced along the southern edge of the range, by black
amygdaloidal trap, and have in their turn been extensively denuded;
and it is this last operation that has sculptured the range, and
given the mountains their present aspect; for the same gneisses,
slates, and basalts in other countries, present rugged peaks, domes,
or cones, and there is nothing in their composition or arrangement
here that explains the tabular or rounded outline they assume, or the
uniform level of the spurs into which they rise, or the curious steep
sides and flat floors of the valleys which drain them.

All these peculiarities of outline are the result of denudation, of
the specific action of which agent we are very ignorant.
The remarkable difference between the steep cliffs on the south face
of the range, and the rounded outline of the hills on the northern
slopes, may be explained on the supposition that when the Khasia was
partially submerged, the Assam valley was a broad bay or gulf; and
that while the Churra cliffs were exposed to the full sweep of the
ocean, the Nunklow shore was washed by a more tranquil sea.

The broad flat marshy heads of all the streams in the central and
northern parts of the chain, and the rounded hills that separate
them, indicate the levelling action of a tidal sea, acting on a low
flat shore;* [Since our return to England, we have been much struck
with the similarity in contour of the Essex and Suffolk coasts, and
with the fact that the tidal coast sculpturing of this surface is
preserved in the very centre of High Suffolk, twenty to thirty miles
distant from the sea, in rounded outlines and broad flat marshy
valleys.]whilst the steep flat- floored valleys of the southern
watershed may be attributed to the scouring action of higher tides on
a boisterous rocky coast. These views are confirmed by an examination
of the east shores of the Bay of Bengal, and particularly by a
comparison of the features of the country about Silhet, now nearly
280 miles distant from the sea, with those of the Chittagong coast,
with which they are identical.

The geological features of the Khasia are in many respects so similar
to those of the Vindhya, Kymore, Behar, and Rajmahal mountains, that
they have been considered by some observers as an eastern
prolongation of that great chain, from which they are geographically
separated by the delta of the Ganges and Burrampooter. The general
contour of the mountains, and of their sandstone cliffs, is the same,
and the association of this rock with coal and lime is a marked point
of similarity; there is, however, this difference between them, that
the coal-shales of Khasia and limestone of Behar are
non-fossiliferous, while the lime of Khasia and the coal-shales of
Behar contain fossils.

The prevalent north-east strike of the gneiss is the same in both,
differing from the Himalaya, where the stratified rocks generally
strike north-west. The nummulites of the limestone are the only known
means we have of forming an approximate estimate of the age of the
Khasia coal, which is the most interesting feature in the geology of
the range: these fossils have been examined by MM. Archiac and Jules
Haines,* ["Description des Animaux Fossiles des Indes Orientales;"
p. 178. These species are _Nummulites scabra,_ Lamarck, _N. obtusa,_
Sowerby, _N. Lucasana,_ Deshayes, and _N. Beaumonti,_ d'Arch. and
Haines.] who have pronounced the species collected by Dr. Thomson and
myself to be the same as those found in the nummulite rocks of
north-west India, Scinde, and Arabia.


Boat voyage to Silhet -- River -- Palms -- Teelas -- Botany -- Fish
weirs -- Forests of Cachar -- Sandal-wood, etc. -- Porpoises --
Alligators -- Silchar -- Tigers -- Rice crops -- Cookies --
Munniporees -- Hockey -- Varnish -- Dance -- Nagas -- Excursion to
Munnipore frontier -- Elephant bogged -- Bamboos -- _Cardiopteris_ --
Climate, etc., of Cachar -- Mosquitos -- Fall of banks -- Silhet --
Oaks -- _Stylidium_ -- Tree-ferns -- Chattuc -- Megna -- Meteorology
-- Palms -- Noacolly -- Salt-smuggling -- Delta of Ganges and Megna
-- Westward progress of Megna -- Peat -- Tide -- Waves -- Earthquakes
-- Dangerous navigation -- Moonlight scenes -- Mud island --
Chittagong -- Mug tribes -- Views -- Trees -- Churs -- Flagstaff
hill -- Coffee -- Pepper -- Tea, etc. -- Excursions from Chittagong
-- _Dipterocarpi_ or Gurjun oil trees -- Earthquake -- Birds -- Papaw
-- Bleeding of stems -- Poppy  and Sun fields -- Seetakoond --
Bungalow and hill -- Perpetual flame -- _Falconeria -- Cycas_ --
Climate -- Leave for Calcutta -- Hattiah island -- Plants --
Sunderbunds -- Steamer -- Tides -- _Nipa fruticans_ -- Fishing --
Otters -- Crocodiles -- _Phoenix paludosa_ -- Departure from India.

We left Churra on the 17th of November, and taking boats at Pundua,
crossed the Jheels to the Soormah, which we ascended to Silhet.
Thence we continued our voyage 120 miles up the river in canoes, to
Silchar, the capital of the district of Cachar: the boats were such
as I described at Chattuc, and though it was impossible to sit
upright in them, they were paddled with great swiftness. The river at
Silhet is 200 yards broad; it is muddy, and flows with a gentle
current of two to three miles an hour, between banks six to twelve
feet high. As we glided up its stream, villages became rarer, and
eminences more frequent in the Jheels. The people are a tall, bold,
athletic Mahometan race, who live much on the water, and cultivate
rice, sesamum, and radishes, with betel-pepper in thatched enclosures
as in Sikkim: maize and sugar are rarer, bamboos abound, and four
palms (_Borassus, Areca,_ cocoa-nut, and _Caryota_) are planted, but
there are no date-palms.

The Teelas (or hillocks) are the haunts of wild boars, tigers, and
elephants, but not of the rhinoceros; they are 80 to 200 feet high,
of horizontally stratified gravel and sand, slates, and clay
conglomerates, with a slag-like honey-combed sandstone; they are
covered with oaks, figs, _Heretiera,_ and bamboos, and besides a
multitude of common Bengal plants, there are some which, though
generally considered mountain or cold country genera, here descend to
the level of the sea; such are _Kadsura, Rubus, Camellia,_ and
_Sabia_; _Aerides_ and _Saccolabia_ are the common orchids, and
rattan-canes and _Pandani_ render the jungles impenetrable.

A very long sedge (_Scleria_) grows by the water, and is used for
thatching: boatloads of it are collected for the Calcutta market, for
which also were destined many immense rafts of bamboo, 100 feet long.
The people fish much, using square and triangular drop-nets stretched
upon bamboos, and rude basket-work weirs, that retain the fish as the
river falls. Near the villages we saw fragments of pottery three feet
below the surface of the ground, shewing that the bank, which is
higher than the surrounding country, increases from the
annual overflow.

About seventy miles up the river, the mountains on the north, which
are east of Jyntea, rise 4000 feet high in forest-clad ranges like
those of Sikkim. Swamps extend from the river to their base, and
penetrate their valleys, which are extremely malarious: these forests
are frequented by timber-cutters, who fell jarool (_Lagerstroemia
Reginae_), a magnificent tree with red wood, which, though soft, is
durable under water, and therefore in universal use for
boat-building. The toon is also cut, with red sandal-wood
(_Adenanthera pavonina_); also Nageesa,* [There is much dispute
amongst oriental scholars about the word Nageesa; the Bombay
philologists refer it to a species of _Garcinia,_ whilst the pundits
on the Calcutta side of India consider it to be _Mesua ferrea._
Throughout our travels in India, we were struck with the undue
reliance placed on native names of plants, and information of all
kinds; and the pertinacity with which each linguist adhered to his
own crotchet as to the application of terms to natural objects, and
their pronunciation. It is a very prevalent, but erroneous,
impression, that savage and half-civilised people have an accurate
knowledge of objects of natural history, and a uniform nomenclature
for them.] _Mesua ferrea,_ which is highly valued for its weight,
strength, and durability: _Aquilaria agallocha,_ the eagle-wood, a
tree yielding uggur oil, is also much sought for its fragrant wood,
which is carried to Silhet and Azmerigunj, where it is broken up and
distilled. Neither teak, sissoo, sal, nor other _Dipterocarpi,_ are
found in these forests.

Porpoises, and both the long and the short-nosed alligator, ascend
the Soormah for 120 miles, being found beyond Silchar, which place we
reached on the 22nd, and were most hospitably received by Colonel
Lister, the political agent commanding the Silhet Light Infantry, who
was inspecting the Cookie levy, a corps of hill-natives which had
lately been enrolled.

The station is a small one, and stands about forty feet above the
river, which however rises half that height in the rains. Long low
spurs of tertiary rocks stretch from the Tipperah hills for many
miles north, through the swampy Jheels to the river; and there are
also hills on the opposite or north side, but detached from the
Cookie hills, as the lofty blue range twelve miles north of the
Soormah is called. All these mountains swarm with tigers, wild
buffalos, and boars, which also infest the long grass of the Jheels.

The elevation of the house we occupied at Silchar was 116 feet above
the sea. The bank it stood on was of clay, with soft rocks of
conglomerate, which often assume the appearance of a brown
sandy slag.

During the first Birmese war, Colonel Lister was sent with a force up
to this remote corner of Bengal, when the country was an uninhabited
jungle, so full of tigers that not a day passed without one or more
of his grass or wood-cutters being carried off. Now, thousands of
acres are cultivated with rice, and during our stay we did not see a
tiger. The quantity of land brought into cultivation in this part of
Bengal, and indeed throughout the Gangetic delta, has probably been
doubled during the last twenty years, and speaks volumes for the
state of the peasant under the Indian Company's sway, as compared
with his former condition. The Silchar rice is of admirable quality,
and much is imported to Silhet, the Jheels not producing grain enough
for the consumption of the people. Though Silchar grows enough for
ten times its population, there was actually a famine six weeks
before our arrival, the demand from Silhet being so great.

The villages of Cachar are peopled by Mahometans, Munniporees, Nagas,
and Cookies; the Cacharies themselves being a poor and peaceful
jungle tribe, confined to the mountains north of the Soormah.
The Munniporees* [The Munnipore valley has never been explored by any
naturalist, its mountains are said to be pine-clad, and to rise 8000
feet above the level of the sea. The Rajah is much harassed by the
Birmese, and is a dependant of the British, who are in the very
frequent dilemma of supporting on the throne a sovereign opposed by a
strong faction of his countrymen, and who has very dubious claims to
his position. During our stay at Silchar, the supposed rightful Rajah
was prevailing over the usurper; a battle had been fought on the
hills on the frontier, and two bodies floated past our bungalow,
pierced with arrows.] are emigrants from the kingdom of that name,
which lies beyond the British possessions, and borders on Assam and
Birmah. Low ranges of forest-clad mountains at the head of the
Soormah, separate it from Silchar, with which it is coterminous; the
two chief towns being seven marches apart. To the south-east of
Silchar are interminable jungles, peopled by the Cookies, a wild
Indo-Chinese tribe, who live in a state of constant warfare, and
possess the whole hill-country from this, southward to beyond
Chittagong. Two years ago they invaded and ravaged Cachar, carrying
many of the inhabitants into slavery, and so frightening the people,
that land previously worth six rupees a biggah, is now reduced to one
and a half. Colonel Lister was sent with a strong party to rescue the
captives, and marched for many days through their country without
disturbing man or beast; penetrating deep forests of gigantic trees
and tall bamboos, never seeing the sun above, or aught to the right
and left, save an occasional clearance and a deserted village.
The incursion, however, had its effects, and the better inclined near
the frontier have since come forward, and been enrolled as the
Cookie levy.

The Munnipore emigrants are industrious settlers for a time, but
never remain long in one place: their religion is Hindoo, and they
keep up a considerable trade with their own country, whence they
import a large breed of buffalos, ponies, silks, and cotton cloths
dyed with arnotto (_Bixa_), and universally used for turbans.
They use bamboo blowing-tubes and arrows for shooting birds, make
excellent shields of rhinoceros hide (imported from Assam), and play
at hockey on horseback like the Western Tibetans. A fine black
varnish from the fruit of _Holigarna longifolia,_ is imported from
Munnipore, as is another made from _Sesuvium Anacardium_
(marking-nut), and a remarkable black pigment resembling that from
_Melanorhoea usitatissima,_ which is white when fresh, and requires
to be kept under water.* [This turns of a beautiful black colour when
applied to a surface, owing, according to Sir D. Brewster, to the
fresh varnish consisting of a congeries of minute organised
particles, which disperse the rays of light in all directions; the
organic structure is destroyed when the varnish dries and the rays of
light are consequently transmitted.]

One fine moonlight night we went to see a Munnipore dance. A large
circular area was thatched with plantain leaves, growing on their
trunks, which were stuck in the ground; and round the enclosure was a
border neatly cut from the white leaf-sheaths of the same tree.
A double enclosure of bamboo, similarly ornamented, left an inner
circle for the performers, and an outer for the spectators: the whole
was lighted with oil lamps and Chinese paper lanterns. The musicians
sat on one side, with cymbals, tomtoms, and flutes, and sang choruses.

The performances began by a copper-coloured Cupid entering and
calling the virgins with a flute; these appeared from a green-room,
to the number of thirty or forty, of all ages and sizes. Each had her
hair dressed in a topknot, and her head covered with a veil; a
scarlet petticoat loaded with tinsel concealed her naked feet, and
over this was a short red kirtle, and an enormous white shawl was
swathed round the body from the armpits to the waist. A broad belt
passed over the right shoulder and under the left arm, to which hung
gold and silver chains, corals, etc., with tinsel and small mirrors
sewed on everywhere: the arms and hands were bare, and decorated with
bangles and rings.

Many of the women were extremely tall, great stature being common
amongst the Munniporees. They commenced with a prostration to Cupid,
around whom they danced very slowly, with the arms stretched out, and
the hands in motion; at each step the free foot was swung backwards
and forwards. Cupid then chose a partner, and standing in the middle
went through the same motions, a compliment the women acknowledged by
curtseying and whirling round, making a sort of cheese with their
petticoats, which, however, were too heavy to inflate properly.

The Nagas are another people found on this frontier, chiefly on the
hills to the north: they are a wild, copper-coloured, uncouth jungle
tribe, who have proved troublesome on the Assam frontier.
Their features are more Tartar than those of the Munniporees,
especially amongst the old men. They bury their dead under the
threshold of their cottages. The men are all but naked, and stick
plumes of hornbills' feathers in their hair, which is bound with
strips of bamboo: tufts of small feathers are passed through their
ears, and worn as shoulder lappets. A short blue cotton cloth, with a
fringe of tinsel and tufts of goat's hair dyed red, is passed over
the loins in front only: they also wear brass armlets, and necklaces
of cowries, coral, amber, ivory, and boar's teeth. The women draw a
fringed blue cloth tightly across the breast, and wear a checked or
striped petticoat. They are less ornamented than the men, and are
pleasing looking; their hair is straight, and cut short over
the eyebrows.

The Naga dances are very different from those of the Munniporees;
being quick, and performed in excellent time to harmonious music.
The figures are regular, like quadrilles and country-dances: the men
hold their knives erect during the performance, the women extend
their arms only when turning partners, and then their hands are not
given, but the palms are held opposite. The step is a sort of polka
and balancez, very graceful and lively. A bar of music is always
played first, and at the end the spectators applaud with two short
shouts. Their ear for music, and the nature of their dance, are as
Tibetan as their countenances, and different from those of the
Indo-Chinese tribes of the frontier.

We had the pleasure of meeting Lieutenant Raban at Silchar, and of
making several excursions in the neighbourhood with him; for which
Colonel Lister here, as at Churra, afforded us every facility of
elephants and men. Had we had time, it was our intention to have
visited Munnipore, but we were anxious to proceed to Chittagong.
I however made a three days' excursion to the frontier, about thirty
miles distant, proceeding along the north bank of the Soormah. On the
way my elephant got bogged in crossing a deep muddy stream: this is
sometimes an alarming position, as should the animal become
terrified, he will seize his rider, or pad, or any other object
(except his driver), to place under his knees to prevent his sinking.
In this instance the driver in great alarm ordered me off, and I had
to flounder out through the black mud. The elephant remained fast all
night, and was released next morning by men with ropes.

The country continued a grassy level, with marshes and rice
cultivation, to the first range of hills, beyond which the river is
unnavigable; there also a forest commences, of oaks, figs, and the
common trees of east Bengal. The road hence was a good one, cut by
Sepoys across the dividing ranges, the first of which is not 500 feet
high. On the ascent bamboos abound, of the kind called Tuldah or
Dulloah, which has long very thin-walled joints; it attains no great
size, but is remarkably gregarious. On the east side of the range,
the road runs through soft shales and beds of clay, and
conglomerates, descending to a broad valley covered with gigantic
scattered timber-trees of jarool, acacia, _Diospyros, Urticeae,_ and
_Bauhiniae,_ rearing their enormous trunks above the bamboo jungle:
immense rattan-canes wound through the forest, and in the gullies
were groves of two kinds of tree-fern, two of _Areca, Wallichia_
palm, screw-pine, and _Dracaena._ Wild rice grew abundantly in the
marshes, with tal1 grasses; and _Cardiopteris_* [A remarkable plant
of unknown affinity; see Brown and Bennett, "Flora Java:" it is found
in the Assam valley and Chittagong.] covered the trees for upwards of
sixty feet, like hops, with a mass of pale-green foliage, and dry
white glistening seed-vessels. This forest differed from those of the
Silhet and Khasia mountains, especially in the abundance of bamboo
jungle, which is, I believe, the prevalent feature of the low hills
in Birmah, Ava, and Munnipore; also in the gigantic size of the
rattans, 1arger palms, and different forest trees, and in the scanty
undergrowth of herbs and bushes. I only saw, however, the skirts of
the forest; the mountains further east, which I am told rise several
thousand feet in limestone cliffs, are doubtless richer in
herbaceous plants.

The climate of Cachar partakes of that of the Jheels in its damp
equable character: during our stay the weather was fine, and dense
fogs formed in the morning: the mean maximum was 80 degrees, minimum
58.4 degrees.* [The temperature does not rise above 90 degrees in
summer, nor sink below 45 degrees or 50 degrees in January:
forty-seven comparative observations with Calcutta showed the mean
temperature to be 1.8 degrees lower at Silchar, and the air damper,
the saturation point being, at Calcutta 0.3791, at Silchar 0.4379.]

The annual rain-fall in 1850 was 111.60 inches, according to a
register kindly given me by Captain Verner. There are few mosquitos,
which is one of the most curious facts in the geographical
distribution of these capricious bloodsuckers; for the locality is
surrounded by swamps, and they swarm at Silhet, and on the river
lower down. Both on the passage up and down, we were tormented in our
canoes by them for eighty or ninety miles above Silhet, and thence
onwards to Cachar we were free.

On the 30th of November, we were preparing for our return to Silhet,
and our canoes were loading, when we were surprised by a loud rushing
noise, and saw a high wave coming down the river, swamping every boat
that remained on its banks, whilst most of those that pushed out into
the stream, escaped with a violent rocking. It was caused by a slip
of the bank three quarters of a mile up the stream, of no great size,
but which propagated a high wave. This appeared to move on at about
the rate of a mile in three or four minutes, giving plenty of time
for our boatmen to push out from the land on hearing the shouts of
those first overtaken by the calamity; but they were too timid, and
consequently one of our canoes, full of papers, instruments, and
clothes, was swamped. Happily our dried collections were not
embarked, and the hot sun repaired much of the damage.

We left in the evening of the 2nd of December, and proceeded to
Silhet, where we were kindly received by Mr. Stainforth, the district
judge. Silhet, the capital of the district of the same name, is a
large Mahometan town, occupying a slightly raised part of the Jheels,
where many of the Teelas seem joined together by beds of gravel and
sand. In the rains it, is surrounded by water, and all communication
with other parts is by boats: in winter, Jynteapore and Pundua may be
reached by land, crossing creeks innumerable on the way.
Mr. Stainforth's house, like those of most of the other Europeans,
occupies the top of one of the Teelas, 150 feet high, and is
surrounded by fine spreading oaks,* [It is not generally known that
oaks are often very tropical plants; not only abounding at low
elevations in the mountains, but descending in abundance to the level
of the sea. Though unknown in Ceylon, the Peninsula of India,
tropical Africa, or South America, they abound in the hot valleys of
the Eastern Himalaya, East Bengal, Malay Peninsula, and Indian
islands; where perhaps more species grow than in any other part of
the world. Such facts as this disturb our preconceived notions of the
geographical distribution of the most familiar tribes of plants, and
throw great doubt on the conclusions which fossil plants are supposed
to indicate.] _Garcinia,_ and _Diospyros_ trees. The rock of which
the hill is composed, is a slag-like ochreous sandstone, covered in
most places with a shrubbery of rose-flowered _Melastoma,_ and some
peculiar plants.* [_Gelonium, Adelia, Moacurra, Linostoma, Justicia,
Trophis, Connarus, Ixora, Congea, Dalhousiea, Grewia, Myrsine,
Buttneria_; and on the shady exposures a _Calamus, Briedelia,_ and
various ferns.]

Broad flat valleys divide the hills, and are beautifully clothed with
a bright green jungle of small palms, and many kinds of ferns.
In sandy places, blue-flowered _Burmannia, Hypoxis,_ and other pretty
tropical annuals, expand their blossoms, with an inconspicuous
_Stylidium,_ a plant belonging to a small natural family, whose
limits are so confined to New Holland, that this is almost the only
kind that does not grow in that continent. Where the ground is
swampy, dwarf _Pandanus_ abounds, with the gigantic nettle, _Urtica
crenulata_ ("Mealum-ma" of Sikkim, see chapter xxiv).

The most interesting botanical ramble about Silhet is to the
tree-fern groves on the path to Jynteapore, following the bottoms of
shallow valleys between the Teelas, and along clear streams, up whose
beds we waded for some miles, under an arching canopy of tropical
shrubs, trees, and climbers, tall grasses, screw-pines, and
_Aroideae._ In the narrower parts of the valleys the tree-ferns are
numerous on the slopes, rearing their slender brown trunks forty feet
high, with feathery crowns of foliage, through which the sun-beams
trembled on the broad shining foliage of the tropical herbage below.

Silhet, though hot and damp, is remarkably healthy, and does not
differ materially in temperature from Silchar, though it is more
equable and humid.* [During our stay of five days the mean maximum
temperature was 74 degrees, minimum 64.8 degrees: that of thirty-two
observations compared with Calcutta show that Silhet is only 1.7
degrees cooler, though Mr. Stainforth's house is upwards of 2 degrees
further north, and 160 feet more elevated. A thermometer sunk two
feet seven inches, stood at 73.5 degrees. The relative
saturation-points were, Calcutta .633, Silhet .821.] It derives some
interest from having been first brought into notice by the enterprise
of one of the Lindsays of Balcarres, at a time when the pioneers of
commerce in India encountered great hardships and much personal
danger. Mr. Lindsay, a writer in the service of the East India
Company, established a factory at Silhet, and commenced the lime
trade with Calcutta,* [For an account of the early settlement of
Silhet, see "Lives of the Lindsays," by Lord Lindsay.] reaping an
enormous fortune himself, and laying the foundation of that
prosperity amongst the people which has been much advanced by the
exertions of the Inglis family, and has steadily progressed under the
protecting rule of the Indian government.

From Silhet we took large boats to navigate the Burrampooter and
Megna, to their embouchure in the Bay of Bengal at Noacolly, a
distance of 250 miles, whence we were to proceed across the head of
the bay to Chittagong, about 100 miles farther. We left on the 7th of
December, and arrived at Chattuc on the 9th, where we met our Khasia
collectors with large loads of plants, and paid them off. The river
was now low, and presented a busy scene, from the numerous trading
boats being confined to its fewer and deeper channels. Long grasses
and sedges (_Arundo, Saccharum_ and _Scleria_), were cut, and stacked
along the water's edge, in huge brown piles, for export
and thatching.

On the 13th December, we entered the broad stream of the Megna.
Rice is cultivated along the mud flats left by the annual floods, and
the banks are lower and less defined than in the Soormah, and support
no long grasses or bushes. Enormous islets of living water-grasses
(_Oplismenus stagninus_) and other plants, floated past, and birds
became more numerous, especially martins and egrets. The sun was hot,
but the weather otherwise cool and pleasant: the mean temperature was
nearly that of Calcutta, 69.7 degrees, but the atmosphere was more
humid.* [The river-water was greenish, and a little cooler (73.8
degrees) than that of the Soormah (74.3 degrees), which was brown and
muddy. The barometer on the Soormah stood 0.028 inch higher than that
of Calcutta (on the mean of thirty-eight observations), whereas on
the Megna the pressure was 0.010 higher. As Calcutta is eighteen feet
above the level of the Bay of Bengal, this shows that the Megna
(which has no perceptible current) is at the level of the sea, and
that either the Soormah is upwards of thirty feet above that level,
or that the atmospheric pressure there, and at this season, is less
than at Calcutta, which, as I have hinted at chapter xxvii, is
probably the case.]

On the 14th we passed the Dacca river; below which the Megna is
several miles wide, and there is an appearance of tide, from masses
of purple _Salvinia_ (a floating plant, allied to ferns), being
thrown up on the beach like sea-weed. Still lower down, the
vegetation of the Sunderbunds commences; there is a narrow beach, and
behind it a mud bank several feet high, supporting a luxuriant green
jungle of palms (_Borassus_ and _Phoenix_), immense fig-trees,
covered with _Calami,_ and tall betel-palms, clothed with the most
elegant drapery of _Arostichum scandens,_ a climbing fern with
pendulous fronds.

Towards the embouchure, the banks rise ten feet high, the river
expands into a muddy sea, and a long swell rolls in, to the disquiet
of our fresh-water boatmen. Low islands of sand and mud stretch along
the horizon: which, together with the ships, distorted by
extraordinary refraction, flicker as if seen through smoke. Mud is
the all prevalent feature; and though the water is not salt, we do
not observe in these broad deltas that amount of animal life (birds,
fish, alligators, and porpoises), that teems in the narrow creeks of
the western Sunderbunds.

We landed in a canal-like creek at Tuktacolly,* ["Colly" signifies a
muddy creek, such as intersect the delta.] on the 17th, and walked to
Noacolly, over a flat of hard mud or dried silt, covered with turf of
_Cynodon Dactylon._ We were hospitably received by Dr. Baker, a
gentleman who has resided here for twenty-three years; and who
communicated to us much interesting information respecting the
features of the Gangetic delta.

Noacolly is a station for collecting the revenue and preventing the
manufacture of salt, which, with opium, are the only monopolies now
in the hands of the East India Company. The salt itself is imported
from Arracan, Ceylon, and even Europe, and is stored in great wooden
buildings here and elsewhere. The ground being impregnated with salt,
the illicit manufacture by evaporation is not easily checked; but
whereas the average number of cases brought to justice used to be
twenty and thirty in a week, they are now reduced to two or three.
It is remarkable, that though the soil yields such an abundance of
this mineral, the water of the Megna at Noacolly is only brackish,
and it is therefore to repeated inundations and surface evaporations
that the salt is due. Fresh water is found at a very few feet depth
everywhere, but it is not good.

When it is considered how comparatively narrow the sea-board of the
delta is, the amount of difference in the physical features of the
several parts, will appear most extraordinary. I have stated that the
difference between the northern and southern halves of the delta is
so great, that, were all depressed and their contents fossilised, the
geologist who examined each by itself, would hardly recognise the two
parts as belonging to one epoch; and the difference between the east
and west halves of the lower delta is equally remarkable.

The total breadth of the delta is 260 miles, from Chittagong to the
mouth of the Hoogly, divided longitudinally by the Megna: all to the
west of that river presents a luxuriant vegetation, while to the east
is a bare muddy expanse, with no trees or shrubs but what are planted
On the west coast the tides rise twelve or thirteen feet, on the
east, from forty to eighty. On the west, the water is salt enough for
mangroves to grow for fifty miles up the Hoogly; on the east, the sea
coast is too fresh for that plant for ten miles south of Chittagong.
On the west, fifty inches is the Cuttack fall of rain; on the east,
90 to 120 at Noacolly and Chittagong, and 200 at Arracan. The east
coast is annually visited by earthquakes, which are rare on the west;
and lastly, the majority of the great trees and shrubs carried down
from the Cuttack and Orissa forests, and deposited on the west coast
of the delta, are not only different in species, but in natural
order, from those that the Fenny and Chittagong rivers bring down
from the jungles.* [The Cuttack forests are composed of teak, Sal,
Sissoo, ebony, _Pentaptera, Buchanania,_ and other trees of a dry
soil, and that require a dry season alternating with a wet one.
These are unknown in the Chittagong forests, which have Jarool
(_Lagerstroemia_) _Mesua, Dipterocarpi,_ nutmegs, oaks of several
kinds, and many other trees not known in the Cuttack forests, and all
typical of a perennially humid atmosphere.]

We were glad to find at Noacolly that our observations on the
progression westwards of the Burrampooter (see chapter xxvii) were
confirmed by the fact that the Megna also is gradually moving in that
direction, leaving much dry land on the Noacolly side, and forming
islands opposite that coast; whilst it encroaches on the Sunderbunds,
and is cutting away the islands in that direction. This advance of
the fresh waters amongst the Sunderbunds is destructive to the
vegetation of the latter, which requires salt; and if the Megna
continues its slow course westwards, the obliteration of thousands of
square miles of a very peculiar flora, and the extinction of many
species of plants and animals that exist nowhere else, may ensue.
In ordinary cases these plants, etc., would take up their abode on
the east coast, as they were driven from the west; but such might not
be the case in this delta; for the sweeping tides of the east coast
prevent any such vegetation establishing itself there, and the mud
which the eastern rivers carry down, becomes a caking dry soil,
unsuited to the germination of seeds.

On our arrival at Calcutta in the following February, Dr. Falconer
showed us specimens of very modern peat, dug out of the banks of the
Hoogly a few feet below the surface of the soil, in which were seeds
of the _Euryale ferox_:* [This peat Dr. Falconer also found to
contain bones of birds and fish, seeds of _Cucumis Madraspatana_ and
another Cucurbitaceous plant, leaves of _Saccharum Sara_ and _Ficus
cordifolia._ Specks of some glistening substance were scattered
through the mass, apparently incipient carbonisation of the peat.]
this plant is not now known to be found nearer than Dacca (sixty
miles north-east, see chapter xxvii), and indicates a very different
state of the surface at Calcutta at the date of its deposition than
that which exists now, and also shows that the estuary was then
much fresher.

The main land of Noacolly is gradually extending seawards, and has
advanced four miles within twenty-three years: this seems
sufficiently accounted for by the recession of the Megna. The
elevation of the surface of the land is caused by the overwhelming
tides and south-west hurricanes in May and October: these extend
thirty miles north and south of Chittagong, and carry the waters of
the Megna and Fenny back over the land, in a series of tremendous
waves, that cover islands of many hundred acres, and roll three miles
on to the main land. On these occasions, the average earthy deposit
of silt, separated by micaceous sand, is an eighth of an inch for
every tide; but in October, 1848, these tides covered Sundeep island,
deposited six inches on its level surface, and filled ditches several
feet deep. These deposits become baked by a tropical sun, and resist
to a considerable degree denudation by rain. Whether any further rise
is caused by elevation from below is doubtful; there is no direct
evidence of it, though slight earthquakes annually occur; and even
when they have not been felt, the water of tanks has been seen to
oscillate for three-quarters of an hour without intermission, from no
discernible cause.* [The natives are familiar with this phenomenon,
of which Dr. Baker remembers two instances, one in the cold season of
1834-5, the other in that of 1830-1. The earthquakes do not affect
any particular month, nor are they accompanied by any meteorological

Noacolly is considered a healthy spot, which is not the case with the
Sunderbund stations west of the Megna. The climate is uniformly hot,
but the thermometer never rises above 90 degrees, nor sinks below 45
degrees; at this temperature hoar-frost will form on straw, and ice
on water placed in porous pans, indicating a powerful radiation.*
[The winds are north-west and north in the cold season (from November
to March), drawing round to west in the afternoons. North-west winds
and heavy hailstorms are frequent from March to May, when violent
gales set in from the southward. The rains commence in June, with
easterly and southerly winds, and the temperature from 82 degrees to
84 degrees; May and October are the hottest months. The rains cease
in the end of October (on the 8th of November in 1849, and 12th of
November in 1850, the latest epoch ever remembered): there is no land
or sea breeze along any part of the coast. During our stay we found
the mean temperature for twelve observations to be precisely that of
Calcutta, but the humidity was more, and the pressure 0.040 1ower.]
We left Noacolly on the 19th for Chittagong; the state of the tide
obliging us to go on board in the night. The distance is only 100
miles, but the passage is considered dangerous at this time (during
the spring-tides) and we were therefore provided with a large vessel
and an experienced crew. The great object in this navigation is to
keep afloat and to make progress towards the top of the tide and
during its flood, and to ground during the ebb in creeks where the
bore (tidal wave) is not violent; for where the channels are broad
and open, the height and force of this wave rolls the largest
coasting craft over and swamps them.

Our boatmen pushed out at 3 in the morning, and brought up at 5, in a
narrow muddy creek on the island of Sidhee. The waters retired along
channels scooped several fathoms deep in black mud, leaving our
vessel aground six or seven feet below the top of the bank, and soon
afterwards there was no water to be seen; as far as the eye could
reach, all was a glistening oozy mud, except the bleak level surfaces
of the islands, on which neither shrub nor tree grew. Soon after 2
p.m. a white line was seen on the low black horizon, which was the
tide-wave, advancing at the rate of five miles an hour, with a hollow
roar; it bore back the mud that was gradually slipping along the
gentle slope, and we were afloat an hour after: at night we grounded
again, opposite the mouth of the Fenny.

By moonlight the scene was oppressively solemn: on all sides the
gurgling waters kept up a peculiar sound that filled the air with
sullen murmurs; the moonbeams slept upon the slimy surface of the
mud, and made the dismal landscape more ghastly still. Silence
followed the ebb, broken occasionally by the wild whistle of a bird
like the curlew, of which a few wheeled through the air: till the
harsh roar of the bore was heard, to which the sailors seemed to
waken by instinct. The waters then closed in on every side, and the
far end of the reflected moonbeam was broken into flashing light,
that approached and soon danced beside the boat.

We much regretted not being able to obtain any more accurate data
than I have given, as to the height of the tide at the mouth of the
Fenny; but where the ebb sometimes retires twenty miles from
high-water mark, it is obviously impossible to plant any tide-gauge.

On the 21st we were ashore at daylight on the Chittagong coast far
north of the station, and were greeted by the sight of hills on the
horizon: we were lying fully twenty feet below high-water mark, and
the tide was out for several miles to the westward. The bank was
covered with flocks of white geese feeding on short grass, upon what
appeared to be detached islets on the surface of the mud.
These islets, which are often an acre in extent, are composed of
stratified mud; they have perpendicular sides several feet high, and
convex surfaces, owing to the tide washing away the earth from under
their sides; and they were further slipping seawards, along the
gently sloping mud-beach. Few or no shells or seaweed were to be
seen, nor is it possible to imagine a more lifeless sea than these
muddy coasts present.

We were three days and nights on this short voyage, without losing
sight of mud or land. I observed the barometer whenever the boat was
on the shore, and found the mean of six readings (all reduced to the
same level) to be identical with that at Calcutta. These being all
taken at elevations lower than that of the Calcutta observatory, show
either a diminished atmospheric pressure, or that the mean level of
high-water is not the same on the east and west coasts of the Bay of
Bengal: this is quite possible, considering the widely different
direction of the tides and currents on each, and that the waters may
be banked up, as it were, in the narrow channels of the western
Sunderbunds. The temperature of the air was the same as at Calcutta,
but the atmosphere was damper. The water was always a degree warmer
than the air.

We arrived at Chittagong on the 23rd of December, and became the
guests of Mr. Sconce, Judge of the district, and of Mr. Lautour; to
both of whom we were greatly indebted for their hospitality and
generous assistance in every way.

Chittagong is a large town of Mahometans and Mugs, a Birmese tribe
who inhabit many parts of the Malay peninsula, and the coast to the
northward of it. The town stands on the north shore of an extensive
delta, formed by rivers from the lofty mountains separating this
district from Birma. These mountains are fine objects on the horizon,
rising 4000 to 8000 feet; they are forest-clad, and inhabited by
turbulent races, who are coterminous with the Cookies of the Cachar
and Tipperah forests; if indeed they be not the same people.
The mountains abound with the splendid timber-trees of the Cachar
forests, but like these are said to want teak, Sal, and Sissoo; they
have, besides many others,, magnificent Gurjun trees
(_Dipterocarpi_), the monarchs of the forests of these coasts.

The natives of Chittagong are excellent shipbuilders and active
traders, and export much rice and timber to Madras and Calcutta.
The town is large and beautifully situated, interspersed with trees
and tanks; the hills resemble those of Silhet, and are covered with a
similar vegetation: on these the European houses are built.
The climate is very healthy, which is not remarkable, considering how
closely it approximates in character to that of Silhet and other
places in Eastern Bengal, but very extraordinary, if it be compared
with Arracan, only 200 miles further south, which is extremely
unhealthy. The prominent difference between the physical features of
Chittagong and Arracan, is the presence of mangrove swamps at the
latter place, for which the water is too fresh at the former.

The hills about the station are not more than 150 or 200 feet high,
and are formed of stratified gravel, sand, and clay, that often
becomes nodular, and is interstratified with slag-like iron clay.
Fossil wood is found; and some of the old buildings about Chittagong
contain nummulitic limestone, probably imported from Silhet or the
peninsula of India, with which countries there is no such trade now.
The views are beautiful, of the blue mountains forty to fifty miles
distant, and the many-armed river, covered with sails, winding
amongst groves of cocoa-nuts, Areca palm, and yellow rice fields.
Good European houses surmount all the eminences, surrounded by trees
of _Acacia_ and _Caesalpinia._ In the hollows are native huts amidst
vegetation of every hue, glossy green _Garciniae_ and figs, broad
plantains, feathery _Cassia_ and Acacias, dark _Mesua_, red-purple
_Terminalia,_ leafless scarlet-flowered _Bombax,_ and grey
_Casuarina._* [This, which is almost exclusively an Australian genus,
is not indigenous at Chittagong: to it belongs an extra-Australian
species common in the Malay islands, and found wild as far north as
Arracan.] Seaward the tide leaves immense flats, called churs, which
stretch for many miles on either side the offing.

We accompanied Mr. Sconce to a bungalow which he has built at the
telegraph station at the south head of the harbour: its situation, on
a hill 100 feet above the sea, is exposed, and at this season the
sea-breeze was invigorating, and even cold, as it blew through the
mat-walls of the bungalow.* [The mean temperature of the two days
(29th and 30th) we spent at this bungalow was 66.5 degrees, that of
Calcutta being 67.6 degrees; the air was damp, and the barometer
0.144 lower at the flagstaff hill, but it fell and rose with the
Calcutta instrument.] To the south, undulating dunes stretch along
the coast, covered with low bushes, of which a red-flowered
_Melastoma_ is the most prevalent,* [_Melastoma,_ jasmine, _Calamus,
AEgle Marmelos, Adelia, Memecylon, Ixora, Limostoma, Congea,_
climbing _Coesalpinia,_ and many other plants; and along their bases
large trees of _Amoora, Gaurea,_ figs, _Mesua,_ and _Micromelon._]
and is considered a species of _Rhododendron_ by many of the
residents! The flats along the beach are several miles broad,
intersected with tidal creeks, and covered with short grass, while
below high-water mark all is mud, coated with green _Conferva._
There are no leafy seaweeds or mangroves, nor any seaside shrub but
_Dilivaria ilicifolia._ Animal life is extremely rare; and a
_Cardium_-like shell and small crab are found sparingly.

Coffee has been cultivated at Chittagong with great success; it is
said to have been introduced by Sir W. Jones, and Mr. Sconce has a
small plantation, from which his table is well supplied. Both Assam
and Chinese teas flourish, but Chinamen are wanted to cure the
leaves. Black pepper succeeds admirably, as do cinnamon, arrowroot,
and ginger.

Early in January we accompanied Mr. Lautour on an excursion to the
north, following a valley separated from the coast by a range of
wooded hills, 1000 feet high. For several marches the bottom of this
valley was broad, flat, and full of villages. At Sidhee, about
twenty-five miles from Chittagong, it contracts, and spurs from the
hills on either flank project into the middle: they are 200 to 300
feet high, formed of red clay, and covered with brushwood. At
Kajee-ke-hath, the most northern point we reached, we were quite
amongst these hills, and in an extremely picturesque country,
intersected by long winding flat valleys, that join one another: some
are full of copsewood, while others present the most beautiful
park-like scenery, and a third class expand into grassy marshes or
lake-beds, with wooded islets rising out of them. The hillsides are
clothed with low jungle, above which tower magnificent Gurjun trees
(wood-oil). The whole contour of this country is that of a low bay,
whose coast is raised above the sea, and over which a high tide once
swept for ages.

The elevation of Hazari-ke-hath is not 100 feet above the level of
the sea. It is about ten miles west of the mouth of the Fenny, from
which it is separated by hills 1000 feet high; its river falls into
that at Chittagong, thirty miles south. Large myrtaceous trees
(_Eugenia_) are common, and show a tendency to the Malayan flora,
which is further demonstrated by the abundance of Gurjun
(_Dipterocarpus turbinatus_). This is the most superb tree we met
with in the Indian forests: we saw several species, but this is the
only common one here; it is conspicuous for its gigantic size, and
for the straightness and graceful form of its tall unbranched pale
grey trunk, and small symmetrical crown: many individuals were
upwards of 200 feet high, and fifteen in girth. Its leaves are broad,
glossy, and beautiful; the flowers (then falling) are not
conspicuous; the wood is hard, close-grained, and durable, and a
fragrant oil exudes from the trunk, which is extremely valuable as
pitch and varnish, etc., besides being a good medicine. The natives
procure it by cutting transverse holes in the trunk, pointing
downwards, and lighting fires in them, which causes the oil to flow.*
[The other trees of these dry forests are many oaks, _Henslowia,
Gordonia, Engelhardtia, Duabanga, Adelia, Byttneria, Bradleia,_ and
large trees of _Pongamia,_ whose seeds yield a useful oil.]

Illustration--GURJUN TREE.

On the 8th of January we experienced a sharp earthquake, preceded by
a dull thumping sound; it lasted about twenty seconds, and seemed to
come up from the southward; the water of a tank by which we were
seated was smartly agitated. The same shock was felt at Mymensing and
at Dacca, 110 miles north-west of this.* [Earthquakes are extremely
common, and sometimes violent, at Chittagong, and doubtless belong to
the volcanic forces of the Malayan peninsula.]

We crossed the dividing ridge of the littoral range on the 9th, and
descended to Seetakoond bungalow, on the high road from Chittagong to
Comilla. The forests at the foot of the range were very extensive,
and swarmed with large red ants that proved very irritating: they
build immense pendulous nests of dead and living leaves at the ends
of the branches of trees, and mat them with a white web. Tigers,
leopards, wild dogs, and boars, are numerous; as are snipes,
pheasants, peacocks, and jungle-fowl, the latter waking the morn with
their shrill crows; and in strange association with them, common
English woodcock, is occasionally found.

The trees are of little value, except the Gurjun, and "Kistooma," a
species of _Bradleia,_ which was stacked extensively, being used for
building purposes. The papaw* [The Papaw tree is said to have the
curious property of rendering tough meat tender, when hung under its
leaves, or touched with the juice; this hastening the process of
decay. With this fact, well-known in the West Indies, I never found a
person in the East acquainted.] is abundantly cultivated, and its
great gourd-like fruit is eaten (called "Papita" or "Chinaman"); the
flavour is that of a bad melon, and a white juice exudes from the
rind. The _Hodgsonia heteroclita_ (_Trichosanthes_ of Roxburgh), a
magnificent Cucurbitaceous climber, grows in these forests; it is the
same species as the Sikkim one (see chapter xviii). The long stem
bleeds copiously when cut, and like almost all woody climbers, is
full of large vessels; the juice does not, however, exude from these
great tubes, which hold air, but from the close woody fibres.
A climbing _Apocyneous_ plant grows in these forests, the milk of
which flows in a continuous stream, resembling caoutchouc (it is
probably the _Urceola elastica,_ which yields Indian-rubber).

The subject of bleeding is involved in great obscurity, and the
systematic examination of the motions in the juices of tropical
climbers by resident observers, offers a fertile field to the
naturalist. I have often remarked that if a climbing stem, in which
the circulation is vigorous, be cut across, it bleeds freely from
both ends, and most copiously from the lower, if it be turned
downwards; but that if a truncheon be severed, there will be no flow
from either of its extremities. This is the case with all the Indian
watery-juiced climbers, at whatever season they may be cut.
When, however, the circulation in the plant is feeble, neither end of
a simple cut will bleed much, but if a truncheon be taken from it,
both the extremities will.

The ascent of the hills, which are densely wooded, was along spurs,
and over knolls of clay; the rocks were sandy and slaty (dip
north-east 60 degrees. The road was good, but always through bamboo
jungle, and it wound amongst the low spurs, so that there was no
defined crest or top of the pass, which is about 800 feet high.
There were no tall palms, tree-ferns, or plantains, no _Hymenophylla_
or _Lycopodia,_ and altogether the forest was smaller and poorer in
plants than we had expected. The only palms (except a few rattans)
were two kinds of _Wallichia._

From the summit we obtained a very extensive and singular view.
At our feet was a broad, low, grassy, alluvial plain, intersected by
creeks, bounding a black expanse of mud which (the tide being out)
appeared to stretch almost continuously to Sundeep Island, thirty
miles distant; while beyond, the blue hills of Tipperah rose on the
north-west horizon. The rocks yielded a dry poor soil, on which grew
dwarf _Phoenix_ and cycas-palm (_Cycas circinalis_ or _pectinata_).

Descending, we rode several miles along an excellent road, that runs
to Tipperah, and stopped at the bungalow of Seetakoond, twenty-five
miles north of Chittagong. The west flank of the range which we had
crossed is much steeper than the east, often precipitous, and
presents the appearance of a sea-worn cliff towards the Bay of
Bengal. Near Seetakoond (which is on the plain) a hill on the range,
bearing the same name, rises 1,136 feet high, and being damper and
more luxuriantly wooded, we were anxious to explore it, and therefore
spent some days at the bungalow. Fields of poppy and sun (_Crotalaria
juncea_), formed most beautiful crops; the latter grows from four to
six feet high, and bears masses of laburnum-like flowers, while the
poppy fields resembled a carpet of dark-green velvet, sprinkled with
white stars; or, as I have elsewhere remarked, a green lake studded
with water-lilies.

The road to the top of Seetakoond leads along a most beautiful
valley, and then winds up a cliff that is in many places almost
precipitous, the ascent being partly by steps cut in the rock, of
which there are 560. The mountain is very sacred, and there is a
large Brahmin temple on its flank; and near the base a perpetual
flame bursts out of the rock. This we were anxious to examine, and
were extremely disappointed to find it a small vertical hole in a
slaty rock, with a lateral one below for a draught; and that it is
daily supplied by pious pilgrims and Brahmins with such enormous
quantities of ghee (liquid butter), that it is to all intents and
purposes an artificial lamp; no trace of natural phenomena being

Illustration--SEETAKUND HILL.

On the dry but wooded west face of the mountain, grows _Falconeria,_
a curious Euphorbiaceous tree, with an acrid milky juice that affects
the eyes when the wood is cut. Beautiful _Cycas_ palms are also
common, with _Terminalia, Bignonia, Sterculia,_ dwarf _Phoenix_ palm,
and Gurjun trees. The east slope of the mountain is damper, and much
more densely wooded; we there found two wild species of nutmeg trees,
whose wood is full of a brown acrid oil, seven palms, tree-ferns, and
many other kinds of ferns, several kinds of oak, _Dracaena,_ and
figs. The top is 1,136 feet above the sea, and commands an extensive
view to all points of the compass; but the forests, in which the ashy
bark of the Gurjun trees is conspicuous, and the beautiful valley on
the west, are the only attractive features.

The weather on the east side of the range differs at this season
remarkably from that on the west, where the vicinity of the sea keeps
the atmosphere more humid and warm, and at the same time prevents the
formation of the dense fogs that hang over the valleys to the
eastward every morning at sunrise. We found the mean temperature at
the bungalow, from January 9th till the 13th, to be 70.2 degrees.

We embarked again at Chittagong on the 16th of January, at 10 p.m.,
for Calcutta, in a very large vessel, rowed by twelve men: we made
wretchedly slow progress, for the reasons mentioned earlier, being
for four days within sight of Chittagong! On the 20th we only reached
Sidhee, and thence made a stretch to Hattiah, an island which may be
said to be moving bodily to the westward, the Megna annually cutting
many acres from the east side; and the tide-wave depositing mud on
the west. The surface is flat, and raised four feet above mean
high-water level; the tide rises about 14 feet up the bank, and then
retires for miles; the total rise and fall is, however, much less
here than in the Fenny, higher up the gulf. The turf is composed of
_Cynodon_ and a _Fimbristylis_; and the earth being impregnated with
salt, supports different kinds of _Chenopodium._ Two kinds of
tamarisk, and a thorny _Cassia_ and _Exoecaria,_ are the only shrubs
on the eastern islands; on the central ones a few dwarf mangroves
appear, with the holly-leaved _Dilivaria,_ dwarf screw-pine
(_Pandanus_), a shrub of _Compositae,_ and a curious fern, a variety
of _Aristichum aureum._ Towards the northern end of Hattiah, Talipot,
cocoa-nut and date-palms appear.

On the 22nd we entered the Sunderbunds, rowing amongst narrow
channels, where the tide rises but a few feet. The banks were covered
with a luxuriant vegetation, chiefly of small trees, above which rose
stately palms. On the 25th, we were overtaken by a steamer from
Assam, a novel sight to us, and a very strange one in these creeks,
which in some places seemed hardly broad enough for it to pass
through. We jumped on board in haste, leaving our boat and luggage to
follow us. She had left Dacca two days before, and this being the dry
season, the route to Calcutta, which is but sixty miles in a straight
line, involved a detour of three hundred.

From the masts of the steamer we obtained an excellent _coup-d'oeil_
of the Sunderbunds; its swamps clothed with verdure, and intersected
by innumerable inosculating channels, with banks a foot or so high.
The amount of tide, which never exceeds ten feet, diminishes in
proceeding westwards into the heart of these swamps, and the epoch,
direction, and duration of the ebb and flow vary so much in every
canal, that at times, after stemming a powerful current, we found
ourselves, without materially changing our course, suddenly swept
along with a favouring stream. This is owing to the complex
ramifications of the creeks, the flow of whose waters is materially
influenced by the most trifling accidents of direction.

Receding from the Megna, the water became saltier, and _Nipa
fruticans_ appeared, throwing up pale yellow-green tufts of feathery
leaves, from a short thick creeping stem, and bearing at the base of
the leaves its great head of nuts, of which millions were floating on
the waters, and vegetating in the mud. Marks of tigers were very
frequent, and the footprints of deer, wild boars, and enormous
crocodiles: these reptiles were extremely common, and glided down the
mud banks on the approach of the steamer, leaving between the
footmarks a deep groove in the mud made by their tail. The _Phoenix
paludosa,_ a dwarf slender-stemmed date-palm, from six to eight feet
high, is the all-prevalent feature, covering the whole landscape with
a carpet of feathery fronds of the liveliest green. The species is
eminently gregarious, more so than any other Indian palm, and
presents so dense a mass of foliage, that when seen from above, the
stems are wholly hidden.* [_Sonneratia, Heritiera littoralis,_ and
_Careya,_ form small gnarled trees on the banks, with deep shining
green-leaved species of _Carallia Rhizophora,_ and other Mangroves.
Occasionally the gigantic reed-mace (_Typha elephantina_) is seen,
and tufts of tall reeds (_Arundo_).]

The water is very turbid, and only ten to twenty feet deep, which, we
were assured by the captain, was not increased during the rains: it
is loaded with vegetable matter, but the banks are always muddy, and
we never saw any peat. Dense fogs prevented our progress in the
morning, and we always anchored at dusk. We did not see a village or
house in the heart of the Sunderbunds (though such do occur), but we
saw canoes, with fishermen, who use the tame otter in fishing; and
the banks were covered with piles of firewood, stacked for the
Calcutta market. As we approached the Hoogly, the water became very
salt and clear; the Nipa fruits were still most abundant, floating
out to sea, but no more of the plant itself was seen. As the channels
became broader, sand-flats appeared, with old salt factories, and
clumps of planted _Casuarina._

On the 28th of January we passed Saugor island, and entered the
Hoogly, steamed past Diamond Harbour, and landed at the Botanic
Garden Ghat, where we received a hearty welcome from Dr. Falconer.
Ten days later we bade farewell to India, reaching England on the
25th of March, 1851.



Most of the instruments which I employed were constructed by Mr.
Newman, and with considerable care: they were in general accurate,
and always extremely well guarded, and put up in the most portable
form, and that least likely to incur damage; they were further
frequently carefully compared by myself. These are points to which
too little attention is paid by makers and by travellers in selecting
instruments and their cases. This remark applies particularly to
portable barometers, of which I had five at various times. Although
there are obvious defects in the system of adjustment, and in the
method of obtaining the temperature of the mercury, I found that
these instruments invariably worked well, and were less liable to
derangement and fracture than any I ever used; the best proof I can
give of this is that I preserved three uninjured during nearly all my
excursions, left two in India, and brought a third home myself that
had accompanied me almost throughout my journey.

In very dry climates these and all other barometers are apt to leak,
from the contraction of the box-wood plug through which the tube
passes into the cistern. This must, in portable barometers, in very
dry weather, be kept moist with a sponge. A small iron bottle of pure
mercury to supply leakage should be supplied with every barometer, as
also a turnscrew. The vernier plate and scale should be screwed, not
soldered on the metal sheath, as if an escape occurs in the
barometer-case the solder is acted upon at once. A table of
corrections for capacity and capillarity should accompany every
instrument, and simple directions, etc., in cases of trifling
derangement, and alteration of neutral point.

The observations for temperature were taken with every precaution to
avoid radiation, and the thermometers were constantly compared with a
standard, and the errors allowed for. The maximum thermometer with a
steel index, I found to be extremely liable to derangement and very
difficult to re-adjust. Negretti's maximum thermometer was not known
to me during my journey. The spirit minimum thermometers again, are
easily set to rights when out of order, but in every one (of six or
seven) which I took to India, by several makers, the zero point
receded, the error in some increasing annually, even to -6 degrees in
two years. This seems due to a vaporisation of the spirit within the
tube. I have seen a thermometer of this description in India, of
which the spirit seemed to have retired wholly into the bulb, and
which I was assured had never been injured. In wet-bulb observations,
distilled water or rain, or snow water was used, but I never found
the result to differ from that obtained by any running fresh water,
except such as was polluted to the taste and eye.

The hours of observation selected were at first sunrise, 9 a.m.,
3 p.m., sunset, and 9 p.m., according to the instructions issued to
the Antarctic expedition by the Royal Society. In Sikkim, however,
I generally adopted the hours appointed at the Surveyor General's
office, Calcutta; viz., sunrise, 9h. 50m. a.m., noon, 2h. 40m. p.m.,
4 p.m., and sunset, to which I added a 10 p.m. observation, besides
many at intermediate hours as often as possible. Of these the 9h.
50m. a.m. and 4 p.m. have been experimentally proved to be those of
the maximum and minimum of atmospheric pressure at the level of the
sea in India, and I did not find any great or marked deviation from
this at any height to which I attained, though at 15,000 or 16,000
feet the morning maximum may occur rather earlier.

The observations for nocturnal (terrestrial) radiation were made by
freely suspending thermometers with naked bulbs, or by laying them on
white cotton, wool, or flannel; also by means of a thermometer placed
in the focus of a silvered parabolic reflector. I did not find that
the reflector possessed any decided advantage over the white
cotton: the means of a number of observations taken by each
approximated closely, but the difference between individual
observations often amounted to 2 degrees.

Observations again indicative of the radiation from grass, whether
dewed or dry, are not strictly comparable; not only does the power of
radiation vary with the species, but much more with the luxuriance
and length of the blades, with the situation, whether on a plane
surface or raised, and with the subjacent soil. Of the great effect
of the soil I had frequent instances; similar tufts of the same
species of grass radiating more powerfully on the dry sandy bed of
the Soane, than on the alluvium on its banks; the exposure being
equal in both instances. Experiments for the surface-temperature of
the soil itself, are least satisfactory of any:--adjoining localities
being no less affected by the nature, than by the state of
disintegration of the surface, and by the amount of vegetation in
proximity to the instrument.

The power of the sun's rays in India is so considerable, and
protracted through so long a period of the day, that I did not find
the temperature of springs, or of running water, even of large deep
rivers, so constant as was to be expected.

The temperature of the earth was taken by sinking a brass tube a yard
long in the soil.

A thermometer with the bulb blackened affords the only means the
traveller can generally compass, of measuring the power of the sun's
rays. It should be screened or put in a blackened box, or laid on
black wool.

A good Photometer being still a desideratum, I had recourse to the
old wedge of coloured glass, of an uniform neutral tint, the distance
between whose extremes, or between transparency and total opacity,
was one foot. A moveable arm carrying a brass plate with a slit and a
vernier, enables the observer to read off at the vanishing point of
the sun's limb, to one five-hundredth of an inch. I generally took
the mean of five readings as one, and the mean of five of these again
I regarded as one observation; but I place little dependence upon the
results. The causes of error are quite obvious. As far as the effects
of the sun's light on vegetation are concerned, I am inclined to
think that it is of more importance to register the number of
hours or rather of parts of each hour, that the sun shines, and its
clearness during the time. To secure valuable results this should be
done repeatedly, and the strength of the rays by the black-bulb
thermometer registered at each hour. The few actinometer observations
will be found in another part of the Appendix.

The dew-point has been calculated from the wet-bulb, by Dr. Apjohn's
formula, or, where the depression of the barometer is considerable,
by that as modified by Colonel Boileau.* [Journal of Asiatic Society,
No. 147 (1844), p.135.] The saturation-point was obtained by dividing
the tension at the dew-point by that at the ordinary temperature, and
the weight of vapour, by Daniell's formula.

The following summary of meteorological observations is alluded to at
vol. i., chapter i.

I.--_Table-land of Birbhoom and Behar, from Taldanga to Dunwah.
Average elevation 1,135 feet._

It is evident from these observations, that compared with Calcutta,
the dryness of the atmosphere is the most remarkable feature of this
table-land, the temperature not being high; and to this, combined
with the sterility of the soil over a great part of the surface, must
be attributed the want of a vigorous vegetation. Though so favourably
exposed to the influence of nocturnal radiation, the amount of the
latter is small. The maximum depression of a thermometer laid on
grass never exceeded 10 degrees, and averaged 7 degrees; whereas the
average depression of the dew-point at the same hour amounted to 25
degrees in the morning. Of course no dew was deposited even in the
clearest star-light night.

                                   February 1848.

Hour                               Sunrise  9 a.m.  3 p.m.  9 p.m.
  Mean                             56.6     70.1    75.5    61.7
  Max.                             65.2     77.0    81.7    66.2
  Min.                             46.3     61.2    65.2    55.5
  Range                            18.9     15.8    16.5    10.7
  Mean                             48.2     53.7    55.3    49.3
  Max. Depression                  12.5     19.3    22.5    20.5
  Min. Depression                   6.0     14.3    16.7     9.0

Elasticity of Vapour               .276     .264    .248    .248

  Mean                             39.5     37.9    36.0    36.1
  Max.                             52.0     52.7    46.8    50.0
  Min.                             23.3     24.5    24.3    *9.1
  Max. Depression                  31.7     39.2    48.4    56.9
  Min. Depression                  10.4     24.3    34.9    16.2

Weight of Vapour in cubic feet     3.088    2.875   2.674   2.745

  Mean                             .550     .330    .260    .410
  Max.                             .680     .450    .320    .590
  Min.                             .330     .260    .190    .140

Number of observations             7        7       7       10

Extreme variations of Temperature             35.4 degrees
Extreme variations of relative humidity       .540
Extreme diff. Solar and Nocturnal Radiation   96.5 degrees

*Taken during a violent N.W. dustt-storm.


Hour             Th.    Black Bulb   Diff.   Phot.
9.30 a.m.        77.0   130          53.0    ...
10 a.m.          69.5   124          54.5    10.320
10 a.m.          77.0   137          60.0    ...
9 a.m.           63.5    94          30.5    10.230
9 a.m.           61.2   106          44.8    ...
9 a.m.           67.0   114          47.0    10.350
Mean             69.2   117.5        48.1    10.300

Hour             Th.    Black Bulb   Diff.   Phot.
3.30 p.m.        81.7   109          27.3    ...
3 p.m.           80.5   120          39.5    10.320
3 p.m.           81.5   127          45.5    10.330
3.30 p.m.        72.7   105          32.3    10.230
3 p.m.           72.5   110          37.5    10.390
Mean             77.8   114.2        36.4    10.318


                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                51.1          48.3       46.6
Mean Diff. from Air         4.0           2.5        6.2
Max. Diff. from Air         9.0           3.7        9.0
Number of Observations      6             3          5

                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                56.4          53.8       54.4
Mean Diff. from Air         5.3           4.9        7.2
Max. Diff. from Air         7.5           5.5       10.0
Number of Observations      7             6          7

On one occasion, and that at night, the dew-point was as low as 11.5
degrees, with a temperature of 66 degrees, a depression rarely
equalled at so low a temperature: this phenomenon was transient, and
caused by the passage of a current of air loaded with dust, whose
particles possibly absorbed the atmospheric humidity. From a
comparison of the night and morning observations of thermometers laid
on grass, the earth, and freely exposed, it appears that the grass
parts with its heat much more rapidly than the earth, but that still
the effect of radiation is slight, lowering its temperature but 2
degrees below that of the freely exposed thermometer.

As compared with the climate of Calcutta, these hills present a
remarkable contrast, considering their proximity in position and
moderate elevation.

The difference of temperature between Calcutta and Birbhoom,
deduced from the sunrise, morning and afternoon observations, amounts
to 4 degrees, which, if the mean height of the hills where crossed by
the road, be called 1,135 feet, will be equal to a fall of one degree
for every 288 feet.

In the dampness of its atmosphere, Calcutta contrasts very remarkably
with these hills; the dew-point on the Hoogly averaging 51.3 degrees,
and on these hills 38 degrees, the corresponding saturation-points
being 0.559 and 0.380.

The difference between sunrise, forenoon and afternoon dew-points at
Calcutta and on the hills, is 13.6 degrees at each observation; but
the atmosphere at Calcutta is relatively drier in the afternoon than
that of the hills; the difference between the Calcutta sunrise and
afternoon saturation-point being 0.449, and that between the hill
sunrise and afternoon, 0.190. The march of the dew-point is thus the
same in both instances, but owing to the much higher temperature of
Calcutta, and the greatly increased tension of the vapour there, the
relative humidity varies greatly during the day.

In other words, the atmosphere of Calcutta is loaded with moisture in
the early morning of this season, and is relatively dry in the
afternoon: in the hills again, it is scarcely more humid at sunrise
than at 3 p.m. That this dryness of the hills is partly due to
elevation, appears from the disproportionately moister state of the
atmosphere below the Dunwah pass.

II. _Abstract of the Meteorological observations taken in the Soane
Valley (mean elevation 422 feet)._

The difference in mean temperature (partly owing to the sun's more
northerly declination) amounts to 2.5 degrees of increase in the
Soane valley, above that of the hills. The range of the thermometer
from day to day was considerably greater on the hills (though fewer
observations were there recorded): it amounted to 17.2 degrees on the
hills, and only 12.8 degrees in the valley. The range from the
maximum to the minimum of each day amounts to the same in both, above
20 degrees. The extreme variations in temperature too coincide within
1.4 degrees.

The hygrometric state of the atmosphere of the valley differs most
decidedly from that of the hills. In the valley dew is constantly
formed, which is owing to the amount of moisture in the air, for
nocturnal radiation is more powerful on the hills. The sunrise and
9 p.m. observations in the valley, give a mean depression of the
dew-point below the air of 12.3 degrees, and those at the upper level
of 21.2 degrees, with no dew on the hills and a copious deposit in
the valley. The corresponding state of the atmosphere as to
saturation is 0.480 on the hills and 0.626 in the valley.

The vegetation of the Soane valley is exposed to a less extreme
temperature than that of the hills; the difference between solar and
nocturnal radiation amounting here only to 80.5 degrees, and on the
hills to 96.5 degrees. There is no material difference in the power
of the sun's rays at the upper and lower levels, as expressed by the
blackbulb thermometer, the average rise of which above one placed in
the shade, amounted to 48 degrees in both cases, and the maximum
occurred about 11 a.m. The decrease of the power of the sun's rays in
the afternoon is much the most rapid in the valley, coinciding with a
greater reduction of the elasticity of vapour and of humidity in the

The photometer observations show a greater degree of sun's light on
the hills than below, but there is not at either station a decided
relation between the indications of this instrument and the
black-bulb thermometer. From observations taken elsewhere, I am
inclined to attribute the excess of solar light on the hills to their
elevation; for at a far greater elevation I have met with much
stronger solar light, in a very damp atmosphere, than I ever
experienced in the drier plains of India. In a damp climate the
greatest intensity may be expected in the forenoon, when the vapour
is diffused near the earth's surface; in the afternoon the lower
strata of atmosphere are drier, but the vapour is condensed into
clouds aloft which more effectually obstruct the sun's rays. On the
Birbhoom and Behar hills, where the amount of vapour is so small that
the afternoon is but little drier than the forenoon, there is little
difference between the solar light at each time. In the Soane valley
again, where a great deal of humidity is removed from the earth's
surface and suspended aloft, the obstruction of the sun's light is
very marked.


Hour                               Sunrise  9 a.m.  3 p.m.  9 p.m.
  Mean                             57.6     74.0    77.6    64.5
  Max.                             62.0     81.0    87.5    68.7
  Min.                             53.5     63.5    71.0    60.0
  Range                             8.5     17.5    16.5     8.7
  Mean                             51.7     59.5    59.9    55.5
  Max. Depression                   8.5     18.5    26.0    12.5
  Min. Depression                   3.8      4.0     6.8     2.5

Elasticity of Vapour               .352     .382    .357    .370

  Mean                             46.1     48.5    46.4    47.5
  Max.                             53.6     56.7    60.0    55.6
  Min.                             40.6     38.0    36.0    41.0
  Max. Depression                  16.9     33.5    44.2    24.1
  Min. Depression                   7.0      6.8    11.0     4.4

Weight of Vapour in cubic feet     3.930    4.066   3.658   4.014

  Mean                             .680     .460    .352    .572
  Max.                             .787     .818    .703    .860
  Min.                             .566     .338    .237    .452

Number of observations             10        8       9       10

Extreme variations of Temperature             34.0 degrees
Extreme variations of relative humidity       .623
Extreme diff. Solar and Nocturnal Radiation   80.5 degrees


                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                53.2          54.0       51.5
Mean Diff. from Air         4.5           3.7        6.2
Max. Diff. from Air         8.5           9.0        7.5
Number of Observations      9             9          8

                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                59.9          60.7       56.4
Mean Diff. from Air         4.6           3.8        8.1
Max. Diff. from Air        11.5          10.5       13.5
Number of Observations     10            10         10


Time             Temp.   Black Bulb   Diff.   Phot.
9 a.m.           70.0    125          55.0    10.300
11 a.m.          81.0    119          38.0    10.230
10.30 a.m.       71.5    126          54.5    10.300
10 a.m.          72.0    117          45.0    10.220
10 a.m.          80.0    122          42.0    ...
10.30 a.m.       78.0    128          50.0    ...
Mean             75.4    122.8        47.4    10.262

Time             Temp.   Black Bulb   Diff.   Phot.
4 p.m.           76.5     90          13.5    ...
3 p.m.           80.0    105          25.0    10.210
3 p.m.           76.0    102          26.0    10.170
3 p.m.           87.5    126          38.5    ...
Mean             80.0    105.7        25.7    10.190


Air Temp.       59.5    55.0
Calotropis      ...     49.5
Diff.           ...      5.5
Argemone        57.0    47.0
Diff.            2.5     8.0

Temp.           67.5    67.0    64.3
Calotropis      ...     ...     58.5
Diff.           ...     ...      5.8
Argemone        53.0    56.0    57.0
Diff.           14.0    11.0     7.3


Hour                               Sunrise  9 a.m.  3 p.m.  9 p.m.
  Mean                             56.8     82.0    88.6    68.0
  Max.                             70.0     89.0    94.7    74.0
  Min.                             50.0     69.0    81.5    61.0
  Range                            20.0     20.0    43.2    13.0
  Mean                             52.5     61.2    62.4    56.8
  Max. Depression                  10.0     24.3    30.2    15.0
  Min. Depression                   1.5     12.0    14.5     6.0

Elasticity of Vapour               .380     .385    .289    .369

  Mean                             48.3     48.7    40.8    47.4
  Max.                             53.1     60.2    50.9    51.8
  Min.                             41.1     40.3    32.3    42.6
  Max. Depression                  17.3     45.2    57.2    27.1
  Min. Depression                   5.4     22.0    25.1    10.2

Weight of Vapour in cubic feet     4.240    4.097   2.975   3.933

  Mean                             .754     .342    .211    .511
  Max.                             .831     .488    .598    .703
  Min.                             .570     .226    .154    .415

Number of observations             12        11      11      11

Extreme variations of Temperature             44.7 degrees
Extreme variations of relative humidity       .677
Extreme diff. Solar and Nocturnal Radiation   100  degrees


                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                51.7          52.4       48.8
Mean Diff. from Air         4.1           3.4        7.0
Max. Diff. from Air         8.0           7.0       11.5
Number of Observations      9             9          9

                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                61.2          64.3       55.8
Mean Diff. from Air         6.8           4.6       11.8
Max. Diff. from Air        10.5           8.5       17.0
Number of Observations     10             9          9


Time             Temp.   Black Bulb   Diff.   Phot.
11.30 a.m.       85.5    129          44.5    ...
10.30 a.m.       89.0    132          43.0    ...
Noon             90.0    132          42.0    10.140
Noon             85.0    130          45.0    ...
Noon             86.0    138          52.0    ...
Noon             90.0    138          48.0    ...
Mean             87.6    133          45.8    10.140

Time             Temp.   Black Bulb   Diff.   Phot.
3 p.m.           85.5    116          30.5    ...
3 p.m.           92.5    128          35.5    ...
3 p.m.           92.0    120          28.0    ...
3 p.m.           89.5    128          38.5    ...
3 p.m.           93.5    144          50.5    ...
Mean             90.6    127          36.6    ...


SUNRISE                                                     Mean
Air Temp.   61.0  57.0  57.0  58.5  57.0  50.0  50.5  56.0  55.9
Barley      56    46    52    52    52    45    43    ...   49.4
Diff.        5.0  11.0   5.0   6.5   5.0   5.0   7.5  ...    6.4
Calotropis  56.5  48.0  ...   ...   ...   45.5  ...   ...   50.0
Diff.        4.5   9.0  ...   ...   ...    4.5  ...   ...    6.0
Argemone    57.0  50.0  50.0  ...   ...   ...   ...   49.0  51.5
Diff.        4.0   7.0   7.0  ...   ...   ...   ...    7.0   6.2

NINE P.M.                                                   Mean
Air Temp.   68.5  70.0  69.0  74.0  62.5  67.5  61.0  ...   67.5
Barley      ...   ...   ...   ...   51.5  67.5  50.0  ...   56.3
Diff.       ...   ...   ...   ...   11.0  10.0  11.0  ...   10.7
Calotropis  ...   65.0  57.0  59.0  ...   62.5  ...   ...   60.9
Diff.       ...    5.0  12.0  15.0  ...    5.0  ...   ...    9.3
Argemone    56.0  67.0  57.0  ...   ...   ...   ...   ...   60.0
Diff.       12.5   3.0  12.0  ...   ...   ...   ...   ...    9.2

The upper course of the Soane being in some places confined, and
exposed to furious gusts from the gullies of the Kymore hills, and at
others expanding into a broad and flat valley, presents many
fluctuations of temperature. The mean temperature is much above that
of the lower parts of the same valley (below Tura), the excess
amounting to 5.4 degrees. The nights and mornings are cooler, by 1.2
degrees, the days hotter by 10 degrees. There were also 10 degrees
increase of range during the thirteen days spent there; and the mean
range from day to day was nearly as great as it was on the hills
of Bengal.

There being much exposed rock, and the valley being swept by violent
dust-storms, the atmosphere is drier, the mean saturation point being
.454, whereas in the lower part of the Soane's course it was .516.

A remarkable uniformity prevails in the depression of thermometers
exposed to nocturnal radiation, whether laid on the earth, grass, or
freely exposed; both the mean and maximum indication coincide very
nearly with those of the lower Soane valley and of the hills.
The temperature of tufts of green barley laid on the ground is one
degree higher than that of short grass; _Argemone_ and _Calotropis_
leaves maintain a still warmer temperature; from the previous
experiments the _Argemone_ appeared to be considerably the cooler,
which I was inclined to attribute to the smoother and more shining
surface of its leaf, but from these there would seem to be no
sensible difference between the radiating powers of the two plants.


Hour                               Sunrise  9 a.m.  3 p.m.  9 p.m.
  Mean                             65.3     81.6    88.1    71.1
  Max.                             69.0     82.5    90.0    76.0
  Min.                             57.5     79.5    84.5    68.0
  Range                            11.5      4.0     5.5     8.0
  Mean                             57.7     65.3    63.3    60.3
  Max. Depression                   8.0     19.0    26.5    13.0
  Min. Depression                   6.0     14.0    21.5     8.3

Elasticity of Vapour               .428     .468    .324    .433

  Mean                             52.0     54.5    43.7    52.3
  Max.                             55.5     57.9    47.8    56.7
  Min.                             45.9     49.0    37.9    46.8
  Max. Depression                  14.1     33.0    46.6    21.9
  Min. Depression                  11.6     12.9    42.2    13.8

Weight of Vapour in cubic feet     4.710    5.000   3.417   4.707

  Mean                             .647     .421    .240    .542
  Max.                             .741     .479    .295    .643
  Min.                             .648     .344    .214    .491

Number of observations              4         3       3       4

Extreme variations of Temperature              32.5 degrees
Extreme variations of relative humidity        .527
Extreme diff. Solar and Nocturnal Radiation   110.5  degrees


                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                59.5          56.0       54.7
Mean Diff. from Air         3.5           1.5        8.2
Max. Diff. from Air         3.5           1.5        8.5
Number of Observations      2             1          2

                           Exposed Th.   On Earth   On Grass
Temperature                71.5          62.5       61.0
Mean Diff. from Air         3.3           5.5        8.2
Max. Diff. from Air         7.0           5.5       11.0
Number of Observations      3             1          2

The rapid drying of the lower strata of the atmosphere during the
day, as indicated by the great decrease in the tension of the vapour
from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., is the effect of the great violence of the
north-west winds.

From the few days' observations taken on the Kymore hills, the
temperature of their flat tops appeared 5 degrees higher than that of
the Soane valley, which is 500 feet below their mean level. I can
account for this anomaly only on the supposition that the thick bed
of alluvium, freely exposed to the sun (not clothed with jungle),
absorbs the sun's rays and parts with its heat slowly. This is
indicated by the increase of temperature being due to the night and
morning observations, which are 3.1 degrees and 8.5 degrees higher
here than below, whilst the 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. temperatures are half a
degree lower.

The variations of temperature too are all much less in amount, as are
those of the state of the atmosphere as to moisture, though the
climate is rather damper.

On the subject of terrestrial radiation the paucity of the
observations precludes my dwelling. Between 9 p.m. and sunrise the
following morning I found the earth to have lost but 6.5 degrees of
heat, whereas a mean of nine observations at the same hours in the
valley below indicated a loss of 12 degrees.

Though the mean temperature deduced from the few days I spent on this
part of the Kymore is so much above that of the upper Soane valley,
which it bounds, I do not suppose that the whole hilly range
partakes of this increase. When the alluvium does not cover the rock,
as at Rotas and many other places, especially along the southern and
eastern ridges of the ghats, the nights are considerably cooler than
on the banks of the Soane; and at Rotas itself, which rises almost
perpendicularly from the river, and is exposed to no such radiation
of heat from a heated soil as Shahgunj is, I found the temperature
considerably below that of Akbarpore on the Soane, which however is
much sheltered by an amphitheatre of rocks.

V. _Mirzapore on the Ganges._

During the few days spent at Mirzapore, I was surprised to find the
temperature of the day cooler by nearly 4 degrees than that of the
hills above, or of the upper part of the Soane valley, while the
nights on the other hand were decidedly warmer. The dew-point was
even lower in proportion, 7.6 degrees, and the climate consequently
drier. The following is an abstract of the observations taken at Mr.
Hamilton's house on the banks of the Ganges (below).

It is remarkable that nocturnal radiation as registered at sunrise is
much more powerful at Mirzapore than on the more exposed Kymore
plateau; the depression of the thermometer freely exposed being 3
degrees greater, that laid on bare earth 6 degrees, and that on the
grass 1.4 degrees greater, on the banks of the Ganges. During my
passage down the Ganges the rise of the dew-point was very steady,
the maximum occurring at the lowest point on the river, Bhaugulpore,
which, as compared with Mirzapore, showed an increase of 8 degrees in
temperature, and of 30.6 degrees in the rise of the dew-point.
The saturation-point at Mirzakore was .331, and at the corresponding
hours at Bhaugulpore .742.


Hour                               Sunrise  9 a.m.  3 p.m.  9 p.m.
  Mean                             61.1     76.1    86.0    76.0
  Max.                             63.0     83.0    ...     ...
  Min.                             58.0     71.0    ...     ...
  Range                             5.0     12.0    ...     ...
  Mean                             48.8     58.5    61.7    63.5
  Max. Difference                  51.5     56.5    24.3    12.5
  Min. Difference                  47.0     51.7    ...     ...

Elasticity of Vapour               .236     .302    .295    .480

  Mean                             34.3     41.9    41.3    55.2
  Max.                             39.7     ...     ...     ...
  Min.                             29.7     ...     ...     ...
  Max. Difference                  32.8     52.3    44.7    20.8
  Min. Difference                  23.8     15.7    ...     ...

Weight of Vapour in cubic feet     2.574    3.271   3.089   5.127

  Mean                             .405     .324    .264    .511
  Max.                             .450     .603    ...     ...
  Min.                             .327     .176    ...     ...

Number of observations              3         3       1       1

Air in Shade. Sunrise        60.0   62.5   63.0   58.0   60.9
Exposed Th.                  55.0   54.5   55.5   53.0   54.6
Difference                    5.0    8.0    7.5    5.0    6.4
Exposed on earth             ...    56.0   50.5   54.0   53.5
Difference                   ...     6.5   12.5    4.0    7.7
Exposed on grass             52.0   52.5   50.5   50.0   51.3
Difference                    8.0   10.0   12.5    8.0    9.6



(By Dr. R. D. Thomson and the Rev. M. J. Berkeley, M.A., F.L.S.)

The following remarks, for which I am indebted to the kindness of the
able chemist and naturalist mentioned above, will be highly valued,
both by those who are interested in the many curious physiological
questions involved in the association of the most obscure forms of
vegetable life with the remarkable phenomena of mineral springs; or
in the exquisitely beautiful microscopic structure of the lower
Algae, which has thrown so much light upon a branch of natural
history, whose domain, like that of astronomy, lies to a great extent
beyond the reach of the unassisted eye.--J.D.H.

1. Mineral water, Soorujkoond, Behar (vol. i., chap. ii), contains
chloride of sodium and sulphate of soda.

2. Mineral water, hot springs, Yeumtong, altitude 11,730 feet (see
vol. ii., chap. xxii). Disengages sulphuretted hydrogen when
fresh.--This water was inodorous when the bottle was opened.
The saline matter in solution was considerably less than in the
Soorujkoond water, but like that consisted of chloride of sodium and
sulphate of soda. Its alkaline character suggests the probability of
its containing carbonate of soda, but none was detected.

The rocks decomposed by the waters of the spring consist of granite
impregnated with sulphate of alumina. It appears that in this case
the sulphurous waters of Yeumtong became impregnated in the air with
sulphuric acid, which decomposed the felspar,* [I have, in my
journal, particularly alluded to the garnets (an aluminous mineral)
being thus entirely decomposed.-J.D.H.] and united with its alumina.
I found traces only of potash in the salt.

Sulphuretted hydrogen waters appear to give origin to sulphuric acid,
when the water impregnated with the gas reaches the surface; and I
have fine fibrous specimens of sulphate of lime accompanied with
sulphur, from the hot springs of Pugha in west Tibet, brought by
Dr. T. Thomson.

3. Mineral water, Momay hot springs, (vol. ii., chap. xxii).--When
the bottle was uncorked, a strong smell of sulphuretted hydrogen was
perceived. The water contains about twenty-five grains per imp.
gallon, of chloride of sodium, sulphate and carbonate of soda; the
reaction being strongly alkaline when the solution was concentrated.

4. Effloresced earth from Behar (vol. i., chap. i), consists of
granite sand, mixed with sesquicarbonate of soda.

_On the Indian Algae which occur principally in different parts of
the Himalayan Range, in the hot-sprinys of Soorujkoond in Bengal,
Pugha in Tibet, and Momay in Sikkim; and on the Fungi of the
Himalayas. By the Rev. M. J. Berkeley, M.A.

It is not my intention in the present appendix to give specific
characters or even accurately determined specific names to the
different objects within its scope, which have come under
investigation, as collected by Dr. Hooker and Dr. Thomson. To do so
would require far more time than I have at present been able to
devote to the subject, for though every species has been examined
microscopically, either by myself or Mr. Broome, and working
sketches secured at the same time, the specific determination of
fresh water Algae from Herbarium specimens is a matter which
requires a very long and accurate comparison of samples from every
available locality, and in the case of such genera as _Zygnema,
Tyndaridea,_ and _Conferva,_ is, after all, not a very satisfactory

The object in view is merely to give some general notion of the forms
which presented themselves in the vast districts visited by the
above-mentioned botanists, comprising localities of the greatest
possible difference as regards both temperature and elevation; but
more especially in the hot-springs which occur in two distant parts
of the Himalayas and in Behar, and these again under very different
degrees of elevation and of extrinsic temperature.

The Algae from lower localities are but few in number, and some of
these of very common forms. We have for instance from the Ganges,
opposite Bijnour, a _Batrachospermum_ and _Conferva crispata,_ the
former purple below, with specimens of _Chantransia,_ exactly as they
might occur in the Thames. The _Conferva,_ or more properly
_Cladophora,_ which occurs also under various forms, at higher
elevations, as in the neighbourhood of Simla and Iskardo, swarms with
little parasites, but of common or uninteresting species. In the
Bijnour specimens, these consist of common forms of _Synedra,
Meridion circulare,_ and a _Cymbella,_ on others from Dacca, there
are about three species of _Synedra,_* {Two of these appear to be _S.
Vaucheriae_ and _S. inaequalis._] a minute _Navicula_ and _Gomphonema
curvatum._ Nothing, in fact, can well be more European. One splendid
Alga, however, occurs at Fitcoree, in Behar, on the banks of nullahs,
which are dry in hot weather, forming a purple fleece of coarse
woolly hairs, which are singularly compressed, and of extreme beauty
under the microscope, from the crystalline green of the articulated
string which threads the bright red investing sheath. This curious
Alga calls to mind in its colouring _Caenocoleus Smithii,_ figured in
English Botany, t. 2940, but it has not the common sheath of that
Alga, and is on a far larger scale. One or two other allied forms, or
species, occur in East Nepal, to which I purpose giving, together
with the Behar plant, the generic name of _Erythronema._ From the
Soane River, also, is an interesting Alga, belonging to the curious
genus _Thwaitesia,_ in which the division of the endochrome in the
fertile cells into four distinct masses, sometimes entirely free, is
beautifully marked. In some cases, indeed, instead of the ordinary
spores, the whole moss is broken up into numerous bodies, as in the
fertile joints of _Ulothrix,_ and probably, as in that case, the
resultant corpuscles are endowed with active motion. In Silhet,
again, is a magnificent _Zygnema,_ allied to _Z. nitidum,_ with large
oval spores, about 1/285 part of an inch long, and a dark golden
brown colour, and containing a spiral green endochrome.

Leaving, however, the lower parts of India, I shall first take the
species which occur in Khasia, Sikkim, Eastern Nepal, and the
adjoining parts of Tibet.

In the hot valleys of the Gtreat Rungeet, at an elevation of about
2000 feet, we have the _Erythronema,_ but under a slightly different
form; at Nunklow, at about the same height; in Khasia, again, at
twice that elevation; in Eastern Nepal, at 12,000; and, finally, at
Momay, reaching up to 16,000 feet. In water, highly impregnated with
oxide of iron, at 4000 feet in Sikkim, a _Leptothrix_ occurred in
great abundance, coloured with the oxide, exactly as is the case with
Algae which grow in iron springs in Europe. At elevations between
5000 and 7000 feet, several European forms occur, consisting of
_Ulothrix, Zygnema, Oscillatoria, Lyngbya, Sphaerozyga, Scytonema,
Conferva,_ and _Cladophora._ The species may indeed not be identical
with European species, but they are all more or less closely allied
to well-known Hydrophytes. One very interesting form, however, either
belonging to the genus _Zygnema,_ or possibly constituting a distinct
genus, occurs in streams at 5000 feet in Sikkim, consisting of highly
gelatinous threads of the normal structure of the _Zygnema,_ but
forming a reticulated mass. The threads adhere to each other
laterally, containing only a single spiral endochrome, and the
articulations are very long. Amongst the threads are mixed those of
some species of _Tyndaridea._ There is also a curious _Hormosiphon,_
at a height of 7000 feet; forming anastomosing gelatinous masses.
A fine new species of _Lyngbya_ extends up as high as 11,000 feet.
At 13,000 feet occurs either some simple _Conferva_ or _Zygnema,_ it
is doubtful which from the condition of the specimens; and at the
same elevation, in the nearly dry bed of the stream which flows from
the larger lake at Momay, amongst flat cakes, consisting of
felspathic silt from the glaciers above, and the debris of Algae, and
abounding in Diatomaceae, some threads of a _Zygnema._ At 17,000
feet, an _Oscillatoria,_ attached or adherent to _Zannichellia_; and,
finally, on the bare ground, at 18,000 feet, on the Donkia mountains,
an obscure species of _Caenocoleus._ On the surface of the glaciers
at Kinchinjhow, on silt, there is a curious _Palmella,_ apparently
quite distinct from any European form.

Amongst the greater part of the Algae, from 4000 feet to 18,000 feet,
various Diatomaceae occur, which will be best noticed in a tabular
form, as follows; the specific name, within brackets, merely
indicating the species to which they bear most resemblance:--

Himantidium (_Soleirolii_)           4000 to 7000 ft.  Sikkim
Odontidium (_hiemale,_ forma minor)  5000 to 7000 ft.  Sikkim
Epithemia, _n. sp._                  7000 ft.          Sikkim
Cymbella                             --                Sikkim
Navicula, _n. sp._                   --                Sikkim
Tabillaria (_flocculosa_)            6000 to 7000 ft.  Sikkim
Odontidium (_hiemale_)             11,000 ft.          Sikkim
Himantidium                        16,000 ft.          Momay
Odontidium (_turgidulum_)          17,000 ft.          Momay
Epithemia (_ocellata_)               --                Tibet
Fragillaria                        18,000 ft.          Momay
Odontidium (_turgidulum_)            --                Momay
Dictyocha (_gracilis_)               --                Momay
Odontidium (_hiemale_)               --                Kinchinjhow

We now turn to those portions of Tibet or the neighbouring regions,
explored by Dr. Thomson and Captain Strachey. The principal feature
in the Algology is the great prevalence of species of _Zygnema_ and
_Tyndaridea,_ which occur under a variety of forms, sometimes with
very thick gelatinous coats. In not a single instance, however, is
there the slightest tendency to produce fructification. _Conferva
crispata_ again, as mentioned above, occurs in several localities;
and in one locality a beautiful unbranched _Conferva,_ with torulose
articulations. At Iskardo, Dr. Thomson gathered a very gelatinous
species of _Draparnaldia,_ or more properly, a _Stygeoclonium,_ if we
may judge from a little conglomeration of cells which appeared
amongst the threads. A _Tetraspora_ in Piti, an obscure
_Tolypothrix,_ and one or two _Oscillatoriae,_ remarkable for their
interrupted mode of growth, complete the list of Algae, with the
exception of one, to be mentioned presently; as also of
_Diatomaceae,_ and of the species of _Nostoc_ and _Hormosiphon,_
which occurred in great profusion, and under several forms, sometimes
attaining a very large size (several inches across), especially in
the districts of Le and Piti, and where the soil or waters were
impregnated with saline matters. It is well known that some species
of _Nostoc_ form an article of food in China, and one was used for
that purpose in a late Arctic expedition, as reported by Dr.
Sutherland; but it does not seem that any use is made of them in
Tibet, though probably all the large species would form tolerable
articles of food, and certainly, from their chemical composition,
prove very nutritious. One species is mentioned by Dr. Thomson as
floating, without any attachment, in the shallow water of the pools
scattered over the plains, on the Parang River, separated only by a
ridge of mountains from Piti, broad and foliaceous, and scarcely
different from the common _Nostoc,_ which occurs in all parts of the
globe. I must not, however, neglect to record a very singular new
genus, in which the young threads have the characters of
_Tyndaridea,_ but, after a time, little swellings occur on their
sides, in which a distinct endochrome is formed, extending backwards
into the parent endochrome, separated from it by a well defined
membrane, and producing, either by repeated pullulation, a compound
mass like that of _Calothrix,_ or simply giving rise to a forked
thread. In the latter case, however, there is no external swelling,
but a lateral endochrome is formed, which, as it grows, makes its way
through an aperture, whose sides are regularly inflected. I have
given to this curious production the name of _Cladozygia Thomsoni._

The whole of the above Algae occurred at heights varying from 10,000
to 15,500 feet. As in the Southern Himalayan Algae, the specimens
were infested with many Diatomaceae, amongst which the moat
conspicuous were various _Cymbellae_ and _Epithemiae.
The following is a list of the species observed.

Cymbella (_gastroides_).
   --    (_gracilis_).
   --    (_Ehrenbergii_)
               and three others.
Odontidium (_hiemale_).
	--     (_mesodon_).
    --     _n. sp._
Epithemia  _n. sp._
Synedra (_arcus_).
   --	(_tenuis_).
   --	(_aequalis_).
Denticula (_obtusa_).
Gomphonema (_abbreviatum_).
Meridion circulare.

There is very little identity between this list and that before given
from the Southern Himalayas, as is the case also with the other
Algae. Till the species, however, have been more completely studied,
a very accurate comparison cannot be made.

In both instances the species which grow in hot springs have been
reserved in order to make their comparison more easy. I shall begin
in an inverse order, with those of the springs of Pugha in Tibet,
which attain a temperature of 174 degrees. Two _Confervae_ only occur
in the specimens which have been preserved, viz., an _Oscillatoria_
allied to that which I have called _O. interrupta,_ and a true
_Conferva_ extremely delicate with very long articulations,
singularly swollen at the commissures. The _Diatomaceae_ are:--

Odontidium (_hiemale_).
    -- 	   (_mesodon_).
    --     _n. sp.,_ same as at Piti on _Conferva._
Denticula (_obtusa_).
Cymbella, three species.

Scarcely any one of these except the _Navicula_ is peculiar to the
locality. A fragment apparently of some _Closterium,_ the only one
which I have met with in the collection, accompanies one of the

The hot springs of Momay, (temp. 110 degrees) at 16,000 feet, produce
a golden brown _Caenocoleus_ representing a small form of _C.
cirrhosus,_ and a very delicate _Sphaerozyga,_ an _Anabaina,_ and
_Tolypothrix_; and at 17,000 feet, a delicate green _Conferva_ with
long even articulations. With the latter is an _Odontidium_ allied
to, or identical with _O. turgidulum,_ and with the former a fine
species of _Epithemia_ resembling in form, but not in marking, _E.
Faba, E. (Zebra)_ a fine _Navicula,_ perhaps the same with _N. major_
and _Fragilaria (virescens)._* [Mr. Thomas Brightwell finds in a
portion of the same specimen _Epithemia alpestris, Surirella
splendida, S. linearis,_ Smith, _Pinnularia viridis,_ Smith,
_Navicula (lanceolata)_ and _Himantidium (arcus)._] In mud from one
of the Momay springs (_a_), I detected _Epithemia (Broomeii n.s.),_
and two small _Naviculae,_ and in the spring (_c_) two species of
_Epithemia_ somewhat like _E. Faba,_ but different from that
mentioned above.

The hot springs of Soorujkoond, of the vegetation of which very
numerous specimens have been preserved, are extremely poor in
species. In the springs themselves and on their banks, at
temperatures varying from 80 degrees to 158 degrees, at which point
vegetation entirely ceases, a minute _Leptothrix_ abounds everywhere,
varying a little in the regularity of the threads in different
specimens, but scarcely presenting two species. Between 84 degrees
and 112 degrees there is an imperfect _Zygnema_ with very long
articulations, and where the green scum passes into brown, there is
sometimes an _0scillatoria,_ of a very minute stellate _Scytonema,_
probably in an imperfect state. _Epithemia ocellata_ also contributes
often to produce the tint. An _Anabaina_ occurs at a temperature of
125 degrees, but the same species was found also in the stream from
the springs where the water had become cold, as was also the case
with the _Zygnema._

The Diatomaceae consisted of:--

Epithemia Broomeii, _n. s._
	--    thermalis, _n. sp._
Epithemia inaequalis, _n. sp._
Navicula Beharensis, _n. sp._

The vegetation in the three sets of springs was very different.
As regards the _Confervae,_ taking the word in its older sense, the
species in the three are quite different, and even in respect of
genera there is little identity, but amongst the _Diatomaceae_ there
is no striking difference, except in those of the Behar springs where
three out of the four did not occur elsewhere. In the Pugha and Momay
springs, the species were either identical with, or nearly allied to
those found in neighbouring localities, where the water did not
exceed the ordinary temperature. A longer examination will doubtless
detect more numerous forms, but those which appear on a first
examination are sure to give a pretty correct general notion of the
vegetation. The species are certainly less numerous than I had
expected, or than might be supposed from the vegetation of those
European hot springs which have been most investigated.

In conclusion, I shall beg to add a few words on the Fungi of the
Himalayas, so far as they have at present been investigated.
As regards these there is a marked difference, as might be
anticipated from the nature of the climates between those parts of
Tibet investigated by Dr. Thomson, and the more southern regions.
The fungi found by Dr. Thomson were but few in number, and for the
most part of very ordinary forms, differing but little from the
produce of an European wood. Some, however, grow to a very large
size, as for instance, _Polyporus fomentarius_ on poplars near
Iskardo, exceeding in dimensions anything which this species exhibits
in Europe. A very fine _AEcidium_ also infests the fir trees (_Abies
Smithiana_), a figure of which has been given in the "Gardeners'
Chronicle," 1852, p. 627, under the name of _AEcidium Thomsoni._
This is allied to the Hexenbesen of the German forests, but is a
finer species and quite distinct. _Polyporus oblectans, Geaster
limbatus, Geaster mammosus, Erysiphe taurica,_ a _Boletus_ infested
with _Sepedonium mycophilum, Scleroderma verrucosum,_ an _AEcidium,_
and a _Uromyces,_ both on _Mulgedium Tataricum,_ about half-a-dozen
Agarics, one at an altitude of 16,000 feet above the Nubra river, a
_Lycoperdon,_ and _Morchella semilibera,_ which is eaten in Kashmir,
and exported when dry to the plains of India, make up the list
of fungi.

The region of Sikkim is perhaps the most productive in fleshy fungi
of any in the world, both as regards numbers and species, and Eastern
Nepal and Khasia yield also an abundant harvest. The forms are for
the most part European, though the species are scarcely ever quite
identical. The dimensions of many are truly gigantic, and many
species afford abundant food to the natives. Mixed with European
forms a few more decidedly tropical occur, and amongst those of East
Nepal is a _Lentinus_ which has the curious property of staining
every thing which touches it of a deep rhubarb yellow, and is not
exceeded in magnificence by any tropical species. The _Polypori_ are
often identical with those of Java, Ceylon, and the Philippine Isles,
and the curious _Trichocoma paradoxum_ which was first found by
Junghuhn in Java, and very recently by Dr. Harvey in Ceylon, occurs
abundantly on the decayed trunks of laurels, as it does in South
Carolina. The curious genus _Mitremyces_ also is scattered here and
there, though not under the American form, but that which occurs in
Java. Though _Hymenomycetes_ are so abundant, the _Discomycetes_ and
_Ascomycetes_ are comparatively rare, and very few species indeed of
_Sphoeria_ were gathered. One curious matter is, that amongst the
very extensive collections which have been made there is scarcely a
single new genus. The species moreover in Sikkim are quite different,
except in the case of some more or less cosmopolite species from
those of Eastern Nepal and Khasia: scarcely a single _Lactarius_ or
_Cortinarius_ for instance occurs in Sikkim, though there are several
in Khasia. The genus _Boletus_ through the whole district assumes the
most magnificent forms, which are generally very different from
anything in Europe.

APPENDIX C.* [The tables referred to, at v. i. chapter ii, as under Appendix C., will be found under Appendix A.]


There is little variety in the soil throughout Sikkim, and, as far as
vegetation is concerned, it may be divided into vegetable mould and
stiff clay--each, as they usually occur, remarkably characteristic in
composition of such soils. Bog-earth is very rare, nor did I find
peat at any elevation.

The clay is uniformly of great tenacity, and is, I believe, wholly
due to the effect of the atmosphere on crumbling gneiss and other
rocks. It makes excellent bricks, is tenacious, seldom friable, and
sometimes accumulated in beds fourteen feet thick, although more
generally only about two feet. In certain localities, beds or narrow
seams of pure felspathic clay and layers of vegetable matter occur in
it, probably wholly due to local causes. An analysis of that near
Dorjiling gives about 30 per cent. of alumina, the rest being silica,
and a fraction of oxide of iron. Lime is wholly unknown as a
constituent of the soil, and only occasionally seen as a stalactitic
deposit from a few springs.

A layer of vegetable earth almost invariably covers the clay to the
depth of from three to twelve or fourteen inches. It is a very rich
black mould, held in its position on the slopes of the hills by the
dense vegetation, and accumulated on the banks of small streams to a
depth at times of three and four feet. The following is an analysis
of an average specimen of the surface-soil of Dorjiling, made for me
by my friend C. J. Muller, Esq., of that place:--

_a._--DRY EARTH.

Anhydrous        83.84
Water            16.16


Humic acid                                                3.89
Humine                                                    4.61
Undecomposed vegetable matter                            20.98
Peroxide of iron and manganese                            7.05
Alumina                                                   8.95
Siliceous matter, insoluble in dilute hydrochloric acid  54.52
Traces of soda and muriatic acid                           --

_c._--Soluble in water, gr. 1.26 per cent., consisting of soda,
muriatic acid, organic matter, and silica.

The soil from which this example was taken was twelve inches deep; it
abounded to the eye in vegetable matter, and was siliceous to the
touch. There were no traces of phosphates or of animal matter, and
doubtful traces of lime and potash. The subsoil of clay gave only 5.7
per cent. of water, and 5.55 of organic matter. The above analysis
was conducted during the rainy month of September, and the sample is
an average one of the surface-soil at 6000 to 10,000 feet. There is,
I think, little difference anywhere in the soils at this elevation,
except where the rock is remarkably micaceous, or where veins of
felspathic granite, by their decomposition, give rise to small beds
of kaolin.


(Vol. i., chapter ii.)


Lat. 24 degrees 52 minutes N.; Long. 84 degrees 22 minutes E.;
Alt. 345 feet.

TheE following appearances are as noted in my journal at the time.
They so entirely resembled auroral beams, that I had no hesitation in
pronouncing them at the time to be such. This opinion has, however,
been dissented from by some meteorologists, who consider that certain
facts connected with the geographical distribution of auroras (if I
may use the term), are opposed to it. I am well aware of the force of
these arguments, which I shall not attempt to controvert; but for the
information of those who may be interested in the matter, I may
remark, that I am very familiar with the Aurora borealis in the
northern temperate zone, and during the Antarctic expedition was in
the habit of recording in the log-book the appearance presented by
the Aurora australis. The late Mr. Williams, Mr. Haddon, and Mr.
Theobald, who were also witnesses of the appearances on this
occasion, considered it a brilliant display of the aurora.

_Feb. 14th,_ 9 p.m.--Bax. Corr. 29.751; temp. 62 degrees;
D.P. 41.0 degrees; calm, sky clear; moon three-quarters full,
and bright.

Observed about thirty lancet beams rising in the north-west from a
low luminous arch, whose extremes bore W. 20 degrees S., and N. 50
degrees E.; altitude of upper limb of arch 20 degrees, of the lower
8 degrees. The beams crossed the zenith, and converged towards S. 15
degrees E. The extremity of the largest was forked, and extended to
25 degrees above the horizon in the S.E. by S. quarter. The extremity
of the centre one bore S. 50 degrees E., and was 45 degrees above the
horizon. The western beams approached nearest the southern horizon.
All the beams moved and flashed slowly, occasionally splitting and
forking, fading and brightening; they were brightly defined, though
the milky way and zodiacal light could not be discerned, and the
stars and planets, though clearly discernible, were very pale.

At 10 p.m., the luminous appearance was more diffused; upper limb of
the arch less defined; no beams crossed the zenith; but occasionally
beams appeared there and faded away.

Between 10 and 11, the beams continued to move and replace one
another, as usual in auroras, but disappeared from the south-east
quarter, and became broader in the northern hemisphere; the longest
beams were near the north and north-east horizon.

At half-past 10, a dark belt, 4 degrees broad, appeared in the
luminous arch, bearing from N. 55 degrees W. to N. 10 degrees W.; its
upper limb was 10 degrees above the horizon: it then gradually
dilated, and thus appeared to break up the arch. This appeared to be
the commencement of the dispersion of the phenomenon.

At 10.50 p.m. the dark band had increased so much in breadth that the
arch was broken up in the north-west, and no beams appeared there.
Eighteen linear beams rose from the eastern part of the arch, and
bore from north to N. 20 degrees E.

Towards 11 p.m., the dark band appeared to have replaced the luminous
arch; the beams were all but gone, a few fragments appearing in the
N.E. A southerly wind sprang up, and a diffused light extended along
the horizon.

At midnight, I saw two faint beams to the north-east, and two well
defined parallel ones in the south-west.



Sikkim is included in a section of the Himalaya, about sixty miles
broad from east to west, where it is bounded respectively by the
mountain states of Bhotan and Nepal. Its southern limits are easily
defined, for the mountains rise abruptly from the plains of Bengal,
as spurs of 6000 to 10,000 feet high, densely clothed with forest to
their summits. The northern and north-eastern frontier of Sikkim is
beyond the region of much rain, and is not a natural, but a political
line, drawn between that country and Tibet. Sikkim lies nearly due
north of Calcutta, and only four hundred miles from the Bay of
Bengal; its latitude being 26 degrees 40 minutes to 28 degrees N.,
and longitude 88 degrees to 89 degrees E.

The main features of Sikkim are Kinchinjunga, the loftiest hitherto
measured mountain, which lies to its north-west, and rises 28,178
feet above the level of the sea; and the Teesta river, which flows
throughout the length of the country, and has a course of upwards of
ninety miles in a straight line. Almost all the sources of the Teesta
are included in Sikkim; and except some comparatively insignificant
streams draining the outermost ranges, there are no rivers in this
country but itself and its feeders, which occupy the largest of the
Himalayan valleys between the Tambur in East Nepal, and the Machoo in
Western Bhotan.

An immense spur, sixty miles long, stretches south from Kinchin to
the plains of India; it is called Singalelah, and separates Sikkim
from East Nepal; the waters from its west flank flow into the Tambur,
and those from the east into the Great Rungeet, a feeder of the
Teesta. Between these two latter rivers is a second spur from
Kinchinjunga, terminating in Tendong.

The eastern boundary of Sikkim, separating it from Bhotan, is formed
for the greater part by the Chola range, which stretches south from
the immense mountain of Donkia, 23,176 feet high, situated fifty
miles E.N.E. of Kinchinjunga: where the frontier approaches the
plains of India, the boundary line follows the course of the Teesta,
and of the Rinkpo, one of its feeders, flowing from the Chola range.
This range is much more lofty than that of Singalelah, and the
drainage from its eastern flank is into the Machoo river, the upper
part of whose course is in Tibet, and the lower in Bhotan.

The Donkia mountain, though 4000 feet lower than Kinchin, is the
culminant point of a much more extensive and elevated mountain mass.
It throws off an immense spur from its north-west face, which runs
west, and then south-west, to Kinchin, forming the watershed of all
the remote sources of the Teesta. This spur has a mean elevation of
18,000 to 19,000 feet, and several of its peaks (of which Chomiomo is
one) rise much higher. The northern boundary of Sikkim is not drawn
along this, but runs due west from Donkia, following a shorter, but
stupendous spur, called Kinchinjhow; whence it crosses the Teesta to
Chomiomo, and is continued onwards to Kinchinjunga.

Though the great spur connecting Donkia with Kinchin is in Tibet, and
bounds the waters that flow directly south into the Teesta, it is far
from the true Himalayan axis, for the rivers that rise on its
northern slope do not run into the valley of the Tsampu, or Tibetan
Burrampooter, but into the Arun of Nepal, which rises to the north of
Donkia, and flows south-west for many miles in Tibet, before entering
Nepal and flowing south to the Ganges.

Sikkim, thus circumscribed, consists of a mass of mountainous spurs,
forest-clad up to 12,000 feet; there are no flat valleys or plains in
the whole country, no lakes or precipices of any consequence below
that elevation, and few or no bare slopes, though the latter are
uniformly steep. The aspect of Sikkim can only be understood by a
reference to its climate and vegetation, and I shall therefore take
these together, and endeavour, by connecting these phenomena, to give
an intelligible view of the main features of the whole country.*
[This I did with reference especially to the cultivation of
Rhododendrons, in a paper which the Horticultural Society of London
did me the honour of printing. Quarterly Journ. of Hort. Soc., vol.
vii., p. 82.]

The greater part of the country between Sikkim and the sea is a dead
level, occupied by the delta of the Ganges and Burrampooter, above
which the slope is so gradual to the base of the mountains, that the
surface of the plain from which the Himalayas immediately rise is
only 300 feet above the sea. The most obvious effect of this position
is, that the prevailing southerly wind reaches the first range of
hills, loaded with vapour. The same current, when deflected easterly
to Bhotan, or westerly to Nepal and the north-west Himalaya, is
intercepted and drained of much moisture, by the Khasia and Garrow
mountains (south of Assam and the Burrampooter) in the former case,
and the Rajmahal hills (south of the Ganges) in the latter. Sikkim is
hence the dampest region of the whole Himalaya.

Viewed from a distance on the plains of India, Sikkim presents the
appearance--common to all mountainous countries--of consecutive
parallel ridges, running east and west: these are all wooded, and
backed by a beautiful range of snowy peaks, with occasional breaks in
the foremost ranges, through which the rivers debouch. Any view of
the Himalaya, especially at a sufficient distance for the remote
snowy peaks to be seen overtopping the outer ridges, is, however,
rare, from the constant deposition of vapours over the forest-clad
ranges during the greater part of the year, and the haziness of the
dry atmosphere of the plains in the winter months. At the end of the
rains, when the south-east monsoon has ceased to blow with constancy,
views are obtained, sometimes from a distance of nearly two hundred
miles. From the plains, the highest peaks subtend so small an angle,
that they appear like white specks very low on the horizon, tipping
the black lower and outer wooded ranges, which always rise out of a
belt of haze, and from the density, probably, of the lower strata of
atmosphere, are never seen to rest on the visible horizon.
The remarkable lowness on the horizon of the whole stupendous mass is
always a disappointing feature to the new comer, who expects to see
dazzling peaks towering in the air. Approaching nearer, the snowy
mountains sink behind the wooded ones, long before the latter have
assumed gigantic proportions; and when they do so, they appear a
sombre, lurid grey-green mass of vegetation, with no brightness or
variation of colour. There is no break in this forest caused by rock,
precipices, or cultivation; some spurs project nearer, and some
valleys appear to retire further into the heart of the foremost great
chain that shuts out all the country beyond.

From Dorjiling the appearance of parallel ridges is found to be
deceptive, and due to the inosculating spurs of long tortuous ranges
that ran north and south throughout the whole length of Sikkim,
dividing deep wooded valleys, which form the beds of large rivers.
The snowy peaks here look like a long east and west range of
mountains, at an average distance of thirty or forty miles.
Advancing into the country, this appearance proves equally deceptive,
and the snowy range is resolved into isolated peaks, situated on the
meridional ridges; their snow-clad spurs, projecting east and west,
cross one another, and being uniformly white, appear to connect the
peaks into one grand unbroken range. The rivers, instead of having
their origin in the snowy mountains, rise far beyond them; many of
their sources are upwards of one hundred miles in a straight line
from the plains, in a very curious country, loftier by far in mean
elevation than the meridional ridges which run south from it, yet
comparatively bare of snow. This rearward part of the mountain region
is Tibet, where all the Sikkim, Nepal, and Bhotan rivers rise as
small streams, increasing in size as they receive the drainage from
the snowed parts of the ridges that bound them in their courses.
Their banks, between 8000 and 14,000 feet, are generally clothed with
rhododendrons, sometimes to the almost total exclusion of other woody
vegetation, especially near the snowy mountains--a cool temperature
and great humidity being the most favourable conditions for the
luxuriant growth of this genus.

The source of this humidity is the southerly or sea wind which blows
steadily from May till October in Sikkim, and prevails throughout the
rest of the year, if not as the monsoon properly so called, as a
current from the moist atmosphere above the Gangetic delta.
This rushes north to the rarefied regions of Sikkim, up the great
valleys, and does not appear materially disturbed by the north-
west wind, which blows during the afternoons of the winter months
over the plains, and along the flanks of the outer range, and is a
dry surface current, due to the diurnal heating of the soil. When it
is considered that this wind, after passing lofty mountains on the
outer range, has to traverse eighty or one hundred miles of alps
before it has watered all the forest region, it will be evident that
its moisture must be expended before it reaches Tibet.

Let the figures in the accompanying woodcut, the one on the true
scale, the other with the heights exaggerated, represent two of these
long meridional ridges, from the watershed to the plains of India,
following in this instance the course of the Teesta river, from its
source at 19,000 feet to where it debouches from the Himalaya at 300.
The lower rugged outline represents one meridional ridge, with all
its most prominent peaks (whether exactly or not on the line of
section); the upper represents the parallel ridge of Singalelah
(D.E.P.), of greater mean elevation, further west, introduced to show
the maximum elevation of the Sikkim mountains, Kinchinjunga (28,178
feet), being represented on it. A deep valley is interposed between
these two ridges, with a feeder of the Teesta in it (the Great
Rungeet), which runs south from Kinchin, and turning west enters the
Teesta at R. The position of the bed of the Teesta river is indicated
by a dotted line from its source at T to the plains at S; of
Dorjiling, on the north flank of the outer range, by _d_; of the
first point where perpetual snow is met with, by P; and of the first
indications of a Tibetan climate, by C.


A warm current of Air, loaded with vapour, will deposit the bulk of
its moisture on the ridge of Sinchul, which rises above Dorjiling
(_d_), and is 8,500 feet high. Passing on, little will be
precipitated on _e_ whose elevation is the same as that of Sinchul;
but much at _f_ (11,000 feet), where the current, being further
cooled, has less capacity for holding vapour, and is further
exhausted. When it ascends to P (15,000 feet) it is sufficiently
cooled to deposit snow in the winter and spring months, more of which
falling than can be melted during the summer, it becomes perennial.
At the top of ginchin very little falls, and it is doubtful if the
southerly current ever reaches that prodigiously elevated isolated
summit. The amount of surface above 20,000 feet is, however, too
limited and broken into isolated peaks to drain the already nearly,
exhausted current, whose condensed vapours roll along in fog beyond
the parallel of Kinchin, are dissipated during the day over the arid
mountains of Tibet, and deposited at night on the cooled surface of
the earth.

Other phenomena of no less importance than the distribution of
vapour, and more or less depending on it, are the duration and amount
of solar and terrestrial radiation. Towards D the sun is rarely seen
during the rainy season, as well from the constant presence of nimbi
aloft, as from fog on the surface of the ground. An absence of both
light and heat is the result south of the parallel of Kinchin; and at
C low fogs prevail at the same season, but do not intercept either
the same amount of light or heat; whilst at T there is much sunshine
and bright light. During the night, again, there is no terrestrial
radiation between S and P; the rain either continues to pour--in some
months with increased violence--or the saturated atmosphere is
condensed into a thick white mist, which hangs over the redundant
vegetation. A bright starlight night is almost unknown in the summer
months at 6000 to 10,000 feet, but is frequent in December and
January, and at intervals between October and May, when, however,
vegetation is little affected by the cold of nocturnal radiation.
In the regions north of Kinchin, starlight nights are more frequent,
and the cold produced by radiation, at 14,000 feet, is often severe
towards the end of the rains in September. Still the amount of clear
weather during the night is small; the fog clears off for an hour or
two at sunset as the wind falls, but the returning cold north current
again chills the air soon afterwards, and rolling masses of vapour
are hence flying overhead, or sweeping the surface of the earth,
throughout the summer nights. In the Tibetan regions, on the other
hand, bright nights and even sharp frosts prevail throughout the
warmest months.

Referring again to the cut, it must be borne in mind that neither of
the two meridional ridges runs in a straight line, but that they wind
or zigzag as all mountain ranges do; that spurs from each ridge are
given off from either flank alternately, and that the origin of a
spur on one side answers to the source of a river (_i.e.,_ the head
of a valley) on the other. These rivers are feeders of the main
stream, the Teesta, and run at more or less of an angle to the
latter. The spurs from the east flank of one ridge cross, at their
ends, those from the west flank of another; and thus transverse
valleys are formed, presenting many modifications of climate with
regard to exposure, temperature, and humidity.

The roads from the plains of India to the watershed in Tibet always
cross these lateral spurs. The main ridge is too winding and rugged,
and too lofty for habitation throughout the greater part of its
length, while the river-channel is always very winding, unhealthy for
the greater part of the year below 4000 feet, and often narrow,
gorge-like, and rocky. The villages are always placed above the
unhealthy regions, on the lateral spurs, which the traveller
repeatedly crosses throughout every day's march; for these spurs give
off lesser ones, and these again others of a third degree, whence the
country is cut up into as many spurs, ridges, and ranges, as there
are rills, streams, and rivers amongst the mountains.

Though the direction of the main atmospheric current is to the north,
it is in reality seldom felt to be so, except the observer be on the
very exposed mountain tops, or watch the motions of the upper strata
of atmosphere. Lower currents of air rush up both the main and
lateral valleys, throughout the day; and from the sinuosities in the
beds of the rivers, and the generally transverse directions of their
feeders, the current often becomes an east or west one. In the branch
valleys draining to the north the wind still ascends; it is, in
short, an ascending warm, moist current, whatever course be pursued
by the valleys it follows.

The sides of each valley are hence equally supplied with moisture,
though local circumstances render the soil on one or the other flank
more or less humid and favourable to a luxuriant vegetation: such
differences are a drier soil on the north side, with a too free
exposure to the sun at low elevations, where its rays, however
transient, rapidly dry the ground, and where the rains, though very
heavy, are of shorter duration, and where, owing to the capacity of
the heated air for retaining moisture, day fogs are comparatively
rare. In the northern parts of Sikkim, again, some of the lateral
valleys are so placed that the moist wind strikes the side facing the
south, and keeps it very humid, whilst the returning cold current
from the neighbouring Tibetan mountains impinges against the side
facing the north, which is hence more bare of vegetation. An infinite
number of local peculiarities will suggest themselves to any one
conversant with physical geography, as causing unequal local
distribution of light, heat, and moisture in the different valleys of
so irregular a country; namely, the amount of slope, and its power of
retaining moisture and soil; the composition and hardness of the
rocks; their dip and strike; the protection of some valleys by lofty
snowed ridges; and the free southern exposures of others at
great elevations.

The position and elevation of the perpetual snow* [It appears to me,
as I have asserted in the pages of my Journal, that the limit of
perpetual snow is laid down too low in all mountain regions, and that
accumulations in hollows, and the descent of glacial ice, mask the
phenomenon more effectually than is generally allowed. In this work I
define the limit, as is customary, in general terms only, as being
that where the accumulations are very great, and whence they are
continuous upwards, on gentle slopes. All perpetual snow, however,
becomes ice, and, as such, obeys the laws of glacial motion, moving
as a viscous fluid; whence it follows that the lower edge of a
snow-bed placed on a slope is, in one sense, the termination of a
glacier, and indicates a position below that where all the snow that
falls melts. I am well aware that it is impossible to define the
limit required with any approach to accuracy. Steep and broken
surfaces, with favourable exposures to the sun or moist winds, are
bare much above places where snow lies throughout the year; but the
occurrence of a gentle slope, free of snow, and covered with plants,
cannot but indicate a point below that of perpetual snow. Such is the
case with the "Jardin" on the Mer de Glace, whose elevation is 9,500
feet, whereas that of perpetual snow is considered by Professor J.
Forbes, our best authority, to be 8,500 feet. Though limited in area,
girdled by glaciers, presenting a very gentle slope to the east, and
screened by surrounding mountains from a considerable proportion of
the sun's rays, the Jardin is clear, for fully three months of the
year, of all but sporadic falls of snow, that never lie long; and so
are similar spots placed higher on the neighbouring slopes; which
facts are quite at variance with the supposition that the perpetual
snow-line is below that point in the Mont Blanc Alps. On the Monte
Rosa Alps, again, Dr. Thomson and I gathered plants in flower, above
12,000 feet on the steep face of the Weiss-thor Pass, and at 10,938
feet on the top of St. Theodule; but in the former case the rocks are
too steep for any snow to lie, they are exposed to the south-east,
and overhang a gorge 8000 feet deep, up which no doubt warm currents
ascend; while at St. Theodule the plants were growing on a slope
which, though gentle, is black and stony, and exposed to warm
ascending currents, as on the Weiss-thor; and I do not consider
either of these as evidences of the limit of perpetual snow being
higher than their position.] vary with those of the individual
ranges, and their exposure to the south wind. The expression that the
perpetual snow lies lower and deeper on the southern slopes of the
Himalayan mountains than on the northern, conveys a false impression.
It is better to say that the snow lies deeper and lower on the
southern faces of the individual mountains and spurs that form the
snowy Himalaya. The axis itself of the chain is generally far north
of the position of the spurs that catch all the snow, and has
comparatively very little snow on it, most of what there is lying
upon north exposures.

A reference to the woodcut will show that the same circumstances
which affect the distribution of moisture and vegetation, determine
the position, amount, and duration of the snow. The principal fall
will occur, as before shown, where the meridional range first attains
a sufficiently great elevation, and the air becomes consequently
cooled below 32 degrees; this is at a little above 14,000 feet,
sporadic falls occurring even in summer at that elevation: these,
however, melt immediately, and the copious winter falls also are
dissipated before June. As the depth of rain-fall diminishes in
advancing north to the higher parts of the meridional ranges, so does
that of the snow-fall. The permanence of the snow, again, depends
on--1. The depth of the accumulation; 2. The mean temperature of the
spot; 3. The melting power of the sun's rays; 4. The prevalence and
strength of evaporating winds. Now at 14,000 feet, though the
accumulation is immense, the amount melted by the sun's rays is
trifling, and there are no evaporating winds; but the mean
temperature is so high, and the corroding powers of the rain (which
falls abundantly throughout summer) and of the warm and humid
ascending currents are so great, that the snow is not perennial.
At 15,500 feet, again, it becomes perennial, and its permanence at
this low elevation (at P) is much favoured by the accumulation and
detention of fogs over the rank vegetation which prevails from S
nearly to P; and by the lofty mountains beyond it, which shield it
from the returning dry currents from the north. In proceeding north
all the circumstances that tend to the dispersion of the snow
increase, whilst the fall diminishes. At P the deposition is enormous
and the snow-line low--16,000 feet; whilst at T little falls, and the
limit of perpetual snow is 19,000 and 20,000 feet. Hence the anomaly,
that the snow-line ascends in advancing north to the coldest
Himalayan regions. The position of the greatest peaks and of the
greatest mass of perpetual snow being generally assumed as indicating
a ridge and watershed, travellers, arguing from single mountains
alone, on the meridional ridges, have at one time supported and at
another denied the assertion, that the snow lies longer and deeper on
the north than on the south slope of the Himalayan ridge.

The great accumulation of snow at 15,000 feet, in the parallel of P,
exercises a decided influence on the vegetation. The alpine
rhododendrons hardly reach 14,000 feet in the broad valleys and
round-headed spurs of the mountains of the Tunkra and Chola passes;
whilst the same species ascend to 16,000, and one to 17,000 feet, at
T. Beyond the latter point, again, the great aridity of the climate
prevents their growth, and in Tibet there are generally none even as
low as 12,000 and 14,000 feet. Glaciers, again, descend to 15,000
feet in the tortuous gorges which immediately debouch from the snows
of Kinchinjunga, but no plants grow on the debris they carry down,
nor is there any sward of grass or herbage at their base, the
atmosphere immediately around being chilled by enormous accumulations
of snow, and the summer sun rarely warming the soil. At T, again, the
glaciers do not descend below 16,000 feet, but a greensward of
vegetation creeps up to their bases, dwarf rhododendrons cover the
moraines, and herbs grow on the patches of earth carried down by the
latter, which are thawed by the more frequent sunshine, and by the
radiation of heat from the unsnowed flanks of the valleys down which
these ice-streams pour.

Looking eastward or westward on the map of India, we perceive that
the phenomenon of perpetual snow is regulated by the same laws.
From the longitude of Upper Assam in 95 degrees E to that of Kashmir
in 75 degrees E, the lowest limit of perpetual snow is 15,500 to
16,000 feet, and a shrubby vegetation affects the most humid
localities near it, at 12,000 to 14,000 feet. Receding from the
plains of India and penetrating the mountains, the climate becomes
drier, the snowline rises, and vegetation diminishes, whether the
elevation of the land increases or decreases; plants reaching 17,000
and 18,000 feet, and the snow-line, 20,000 feet. To mention extreme
cases; the snow-level of Sikkim in 27 degrees 30 minutes is at 16,000
feet, whereas in latitude 35 degrees 30 minutes Dr. Thomson found the
snow line 20,000 feet on the mountains near the Karakoram Pass, and
vegetation up to 18,500 feet--features I found to be common also to
Sikkim in latitude 28 degrees.

The Himalaya, north of Nepal, and thence eastward to the bend of the
Yaru-Tsampu (or Tibetan Burrampooter) has for its geographical limits
the plains of India to the south, and the bed of the Yaru to the
north. All between these limits is a mountain mass, to which Tibet
(though so often erroneously called a plain)* [The only true account
of the general features of eastern Tibet is to be found in MM. Huc
and Gabet's travels. Their description agrees with Dr. Thomson's
account of western Tibet, and with my experience of the parts to the
north of Sikkim, and the information I everywhere obtained.
The so-called _plains_ are the flat floors of the valleys, and the
terraces on the margins of the rivers, which all flow between
stupendous mountains. The term "maidan," so often applied to Tibet by
the natives, implies, not a plain like that of India, but simply an
open, dry, treeless country, in contrast to the densely wooded wet
regions of the snowy Himalaya, south of Tibet.] forms no exception.
The waters from the north side of this chain flow into the Tsampu,
and those from the south side into the Burrampooter of Assam, and the
Ganges. The line, however tortuous, dividing the heads of these
waters, is the watershed, and the only guide we have to the axis of
the Himalaya. This has never been crossed by Europeans, except by
Captain Turner's embassy in 1798, and Captain Bogle's in 1779, both
of which reached the Yaru river. In the account published by Captain
Turner, the summit of the watershed is not rigorously defined, and
the boundary, of Tibet and Bhotan is sometimes erroneously taken for
it; the boundary being at that point a southern spur of Chumulari.*
[Between Donkia and Chumulari lies a portion of Tibet (including the
upper part of the course of the Machoo river) bounded on the east by
Bhotan, and on the west by Sikkim (see chapter xxii). Turner, when
crossing the Simonang Pass, descended westwards into the valley of
the Machoo, and was still on the Indian watershed.] Eastwards from
the sources of the Tsampu, the watershed of the Himalaya seems to
follow a very winding course, and to be everywhere to the north of
the snowy peaks seen from the plains of India. It is by a line
through these snowy peaks that the axis of the Himalaya is
represented in all our maps; because they _seem_ from the plains to
be situated on an east and west ridge, instead of being placed on
subsidiary meridional ridges, as explained above. It is also across
or along the subsidiary ridges that the boundary line between the
Tibetan provinces and those of Nepal, Sikkim, and Bhotan, is usually
drawn; because the enormous accumulations of snow form a more
efficient natural barrier than the greater height of the less snowed
central part of the chain beyond them.

Though, however, our maps draw the axis through the snowy peaks,
they also make the rivers to rise beyond the latter, on the northern
slopes as it were, and to flow southwards through gaps in the axis.
Such a feature is only reconcilable with the hypothesis of the chain
being double, as the Cordillera of Peru and Chili is said to be,
geographically, and which in a geological sense it no doubt is: but
to the Cordillera the Himalaya offers no parallel. The results of
Dr. Thomson's study of the north-west Himalaya and Tibet, and
my own of the north-east extreme of Sikkim and Tibet, first gave
me an insight into the true structure of this chain. Donkia mountain
is the culminant point of an immensely elevated mass of mountains, of
greater mean height than a similarly extensive area around Kinchin
junga. It comprises Chumulari, and many other mountains much
above 20,000 feet, though none equalling Kinchinjunga, Junnoo, and
Kubra. The great lakes of Ramchoo and Cholamoo are placed on it; and
the rivers rising on it flow in various directions; the Painomchoo
north-west into the Yaru; the Arun west to Nepal; the Teesta south-
west through Sikkim; the Machoo south, and the Pachoo south-east,
through Bhotan. All these rivers have their sources far beyond the
great snowed mountains, the Arun most conspicuously of all, flowing
completely at the back or north of Kinchinjunga. Those that flow
southwards, break through no chain, nor do they meet any contraction
as they pass the snowy parts of the mountains which bound the valleys
in which they flow, but are bound by uniform ranges of lofty
mountains, which become more snowy as they approach the plains of
India. These valleys, however, gradually contract as they descend,
being less open in Sikkim and Nepal than in Tibet, though there
bounded by rugged mountains, which from being so bare of snow and of
vegetation, do not give the same impression of height as the isolated
sharper peaks which rise out of a dense forest, and on which the snow
limit is 4,000 or 5,000 feet lower.

The fact of the bottom of the river valleys being flatter towards the
watershed, is connected with that of their fall being less rapid at
that part of their course; this is the consequence of the great
extent in breadth of the most elevated portion of the chain. If we
select the Teesta as an example, and measure its fall at three points
of its course, we shall find the results very different. From its
principal source at Lake Cholamoo, it descends from 17,000 to 15,000
feet, with a fall of 60 feet to the mile; from 15,000 to 12,000 feet,
the fall is 140 feet to the mile; in the third part of its course it
descends from 12,000 to 5000 feet, with a fall of 160 feet to the
mile; and in the lower part the descent is from 5000 feet to the
plains of India at 300 feet, giving a fall of 50 feet to the mile.
There is, however, no marked limit to these divisions; its valley.
gradually contracts, and its course gradually becomes more rapid.
It is worthy of notice that the fall is at its maximum through that
part of its valley of which the flanks are the most loaded with snow;
where the old moraines are very conspicuous, and where the present
accumulations from landslips, etc., are the most extensive.* [It is
not my intention to discuss here the geological bearings of this
curious question; but I may state that as the humidity of the climate
of the middle region of the river-course tends to increase the fall
in a given space, so I believe the dryness of the climate of the
loftier country has the opposite effect, by preserving those
accumulations which have raised the floors of the valleys and
rendered them level.]

With reference to Kinchinjunga, these facts are of importance, as
showing that mere elevation is in physical geography of secondary
importance. That lofty mountain rises from a spur of the great range
of Donkia, and is quite removed from the watershed or axis of the
Himalaya, the rivers which drain its northern and southern flanks
alike flowing to the Ganges. Were the Himalaya to be depressed 18,000
feet, Kubra, Junnoo, Pundim, etc., would form a small cluster of
rocky islands 1000 to 7000 feet high, grouped near Kinchinjunga,
itself a cape 10,000 feet high, which would be connected by a low,
marrow neck, with an extensive and mountainous tract of land to its
north-east; the latter being represented by Donkia. To the north of
Kinchin a deep bay or inlet would occupy the present valley of the
Arun, and would be bounded on the north by the axis of the Himalaya,
which would form a continuous tract of land beyond it. Since writing
the above, I have seen Professor J. Forbes's beautiful work on the
glaciers of Norway: it fully justifies a comparison of the Himalaya
to Norway, which has long been a familiar subject of theoretical
enquiry with Dr. Thomson and myself. The deep narrow valleys of
Sikkim admirably represent the Norwegian fiords; the lofty, rugged,
snowy mountains, those more or less submerged islands of the
Norwegian coast; the broad rearward watershed, or axis of the chain,
with its lakes, is the same in both, and the Yaru-tsampu occupies the
relative position of the Baltic.

Along the whole chain of the Himalaya east of Kumaon there are, I
have no doubt, a succession of such lofty masses as Donkia, giving
off stupendous spurs such as that on which Kinchin forms so
conspicuous a feature. In support of this view we find every river
rising far beyond the snowy peaks, which are separated by
continuously unsnowed ranges placed between the great white masses
that these spurs present to the observer from the south.* [At vol. i.
chapter viii, I have particularly called attention to the fact, that
west of Kinchinjunga there is no continuation of a snowy Himalaya, as
it is commonly called. So between Donkia and Chumulari there is no
perpetual snow, and the valley of the Machoo is very broad, open, and
comparatively flat.] From the Khasia mountains (south-east of Sikkim)
many of these groups or spurs were seen by Dr. Thomson and myself, at
various distances (80 to 210 miles); and these groups were between
the courses of the great rivers the Soobansiri, Monass, and Pachoo,
all east of Sikkim. Other masses seen from the Gangetic valley
probably thus mark the relative positions of the Arun, Cosi, Gunduk,
and Gogra rivers.

Another mass like that of Chumulari and Donkia, is that around the
Mansarowar lakes, so ably surveyed by the brothers Captains R. and H.
Strachey, which is evidently the centre of the Himalaya. From it the
Gogra, Sutlej, Indus, and Yaru rivers all flow to the Indian side of
Asia; and from it spring four chains, two of which are better known
than the others. These are:--1. The eastern Himalaya, whose axis runs
north of Nepal, Sikkim, and Bhotan, to the bend of the Yaru, the
valley of which it divides from the plains of India. 2. The
north-west Himalaya, which separates the valley of the Indus from the
plains of India. Behind these, and probably parallel to them, lie two
other chains. 3. The Kouenlun or Karakoram chain, dividing the Indus
from the Yarkand river. 4. The chain north of the Yaru, of which
nothing is known. All the waters from the two first of these chains,
flow into the Indian Ocean, as do those from the south faces of the
third and fourth; those from the north side of the Kouenlun, and of
the chain north of the Yaru, flow into the great valley of Lake Lhop,
which may once have been continuous with the Amoor river.* [The
Chinese assert that Lake Lhop once drained into the Hoang-ho; the
statement is curious, and capable of confirmation when central Asia
shall have been explored.]

For this view of the physical geography of the western Himalaya and
central Asia, I am indebted to Dr. Thomson. It is more consonant with
nature, and with what we know of the geography of the country and of
the nature of mountain chains, than that of the illustrious Humboldt,
who divides central Asia by four parallel chains, united by two
meridional ones; one at each extremity of the mountain district.
It follows in continuation and conclusion of our view that the
mountain mass of Pamir or Bolor, between the sources of the Oxus and
those of the Yarkand river, may be regarded as a centre from which
spring the three greatest mountain systems of Asia. These are:--1. A
great chain, which runs in a north-easterly direction as far as
Behring's Straits, separating all the rivers of Siberia from those
which flow into the Pacific Ocean. 2. The Hindoo Koosh, continued
through Persia, and Armenia into Taurus. And, 3. The Muztagh or
Karakorum, which probably extends due east into China, south of the
Hoang-ho, but which is broken up north of Mansarowar into the chains
which have been already enumerated.



The meteorology of Sikkim, as of every part of the Himalayan range,
is a subject of growing interest and importance; as it becomes yearly
more necessary for the Government to afford increased facilities for
a residence in the mountains to Europeans in search of health, or of
a salubrious climate for their families, or for themselves on
retirement from the exhausting service of the plains. I was therefore
surprised to find no further register of the weather at Dorjiling,
than an insufficient one of the rain-fall, kept by the medical
officer in charge of the station; who, in this, as in all similar
cases,* [The government of India has gone to an immense expense, and
entailed a heavy duty upon its stationary medical officers, in
supplying them with sometimes admirable, but more often very
inaccurate, meteorological instruments, and requiring that daily
registers be made, and transmitted to Calcutta. In no case have I
found it to be in the officer's power to carry out this object; he
has never time, seldom the necessary knowledge and experience, and
far too often no inclination. The majority of the observations are in
most cases left to personal native or other servants, and the
laborious results I have examined are too frequently worthless.] has
neither the time nor the opportunity to give even the minimum of
required attention to the subject of meteorology. This defect has
been in a measure remedied by Dr. Chapman, who kept a twelve-months'
register in 1837, with instruments carefully compared with Calcutta
standards by the late James Prinsep, Esq., one of the most
accomplished men in literature and science that India ever saw.

The annual means of temperature, rain-fall, etc., vary greatly in the
Himalaya; and apparently slight local causes produce such great
differences of temperature and humidity, that one year's observations
taken at one spot, however full and accurate they may be, are
insufficient: this is remarkably the case in Sikkim, where the
rainfall is great, and where the difference between those of two
consecutive years is often greater than the whole annual London fall.
My own meteorological observations necessarily form but a broken
series, but they were made with the best instruments, and with a view
to obtaining results that should be comparable _inter se,_ and with
those of Calcutta; when away from Dorjiling too, in the interior of
Sikkim, I had the advantage of Mr. Muller's services in taking
observations at hours agreed upon previous to my leaving, and these
were of the greatest importance, both for calculating elevations, and
for ascertaining the differences of temperature, humidity, diurnal
atmospheric tide, and rain-fall; all of which vary with the
elevation, and the distance from the plains of India.

Mr. Hodgson's house proved a most favourable spot for an observatory,
being placed on the top of the Dorjiling spur, with its broad
verandah facing the north, in which I protected the instruments from
radiation* [This is a most important point, generally wholly
neglected in India, where I have usually seen the thermometer hung in
good shade, but exposed to reflected heat from walls, gravel walks,
or dry earth. I am accustomed from experience to view all extreme
temperatures with great suspicion, on this and other accounts. It is
very seldom that the temperature of the free shaded air rises much
above 100 degrees, except during hot winds, when the lower stratum
only of atmosphere (often loaded with hot particles of sand), sweeps
over the surface of a soil scorched by the direct rays of the sun.]
and wind. Broad grass-plots and a gravel walk surrounded the house,
and large trees were scattered about; on three sides the ground
sloped away, while to the north the spur gently rose behind.

Throughout the greater part of the year the prevailing wind is from
the south-east, and comes laden with moisture from the Bay of Bengal:
it rises at sunrise, and its vapours are early condensed on the
forests of Sinchul; billowy clouds rapidly succeed small patches of
vapour, which rolling over to the north side of the mountain, are
carried north-west, over a broad intervening valley, to Dorjiling.
There they bank on the east side of the spur, and this being
partially clear of wood, the accumulation is slow, and always first
upon the clumps of trees. Very generally by 9 a.m., the whole eastern
sky, from the top of Dorjiling ridge, is enveloped in a dense fog,
while the whole western exposure enjoys sunshine for an hour or two
later. At 7 or 8 a.m., very small patches are seen to collect on
Tonglo, which gradually dilate and coalesce, but do not shroud the
mountain for some hours, generally not before 11 a.m. or noon.
Before that time, however, masses of mist have been rolling over
Dorjiling ridge to the westward, and gradually filling up the
valleys, so that by noon, or 1 p.m., every object is in cloud.
Towards sunset it falls calm, when the mist rises, first from
Sinchul, or if a south-east wind sets in, from Tonglo first.

The temperature is more uuiform at Mr. Hodgson's bungalow, which is
on the top of the Dorjiling ridge, than on either of its flanks; this
is very much because a good deal of wood is left upon it, whose cool
foliage attracts and condenses the mists. Its mean temperature is
lower by nearly 22 degrees than that of Mr. Muller's and Dr.
Campbell's houses, both situated on the slopes, 400 feet below.
This I ascertained by numerous comparative observations of the
temperature of the air, and by burying thermometers in the earth it
is chiefly to be accounted for by the more frequent sunshine at the
lower stations, the power of the sun often raising the thermometer in
shade to 80 degrees, at Mr. Muller's; whereas during the summer I
spent at Mr. Hodgson's it never rose much above 70 degrees, attaining
that height very seldom and for a very short period only. The nights,
again, are uniformly and equally cloudy at both stations, so that
there is no corresponding cold of nocturnal radiation to reduce
the temperature.

The mean decrease of temperature due to elevation, I have stated
(Appendix I.) to be about 1 degree for every 300 feet of ascent;
according to which law Mr. Hodgson's should not be more than 1.5
degrees° colder than Mr. Muller's. These facts prove how difficult it
is to choose unexceptionable sites for meteorological observatories
in mountainous countries; discrepancies of so great an amount being
due to local causes, which, as in this case, are perhaps transient;
for should the top of the spur be wholly cleared of timber, its
temperature would be materially raised; at the expense, probably, of
a deficiency of water at certain seasons. Great inequalities of
temperature are also produced by ascending currents of heated air
from the Great Rungeet valley, which affect certain parts of the
station only; and these raise the thermometer 10 degrees (even when
the sun is clouded) above what it indicates at other places of
equal elevation.

The mean temperature of Dorjiling (elev. 7,430 feet) is very nearly
50 degrees, or 2 degrees higher than that of London, and 26 degrees
below that of Calcutta (78 degrees,* [Prinsep, in As. Soc. Journ.,
Jan. 1832, p. 30.] or 78.5 degrees in the latest published tables*
[Daniell's Met. Essays, vol. ii. p. 341.]); which, allowing 1 degree
of diminution of temperature for every degree of latitude leaves
1 degree due to every 300 feet of ascent above Calcutta to the height
of Dorjiling, agreeably to my own observations. This diminution is
not the same for greater heights, as I shall have occasion to show in
a separate chapter of this Appendix, on the decrement of heat
with elevation.

A remarkable uniformity of temperature prevails throughout the year
at Dorjiling, there being only 22 degrees difference between the mean
temperatures of the hottest and coldest months; whilst in London,
with a lower mean temperature, the equivalent difference is 27
degrees. At 11,000 feet this difference is equal to that of London.
In more elevated regions, it is still greater, the climate becoming
excessive at 15,000 feet, where the difference amounts to 30 degrees
at least.* [This is contrary to the conclusions of all meteorologists
who have studied the climate of the Alps, and is entirely due to the
local disturbances which I have so often dwelt upon, and principally
to the unequal distribution of moisture in the loftier rearward
regions, and the aridity of Tibet. Professor James Forbes states (Ed.
Phil. Trans., v. xiv. p. 489):--1. That the decrement of temperature
with altitude is most rapid in summer: this (as I shall hereafter
show) is not the case in the Himalaya, chiefly because the warm south
moist wind then prevails. 2. That the annual range of temperature
diminishes with the elevation: this, too, is not the case in Sikkim,
because of the barer surface and more cloudless skies of the rearward
loftier regions. 3. That the diurnal range of temperature diminishes
with the height: that this is not the cane follows from the same
cause. 4. That radiation is least in winter: this is negatived by the
influence of the summer rains.] The accompanying table is the result
of an attempt to approximate to the mean temperatures and ranges of
the thermometer at various elevations.

Altitude             11,000 feet   15,000 feet   19,000 feet
Mean shade             40.9          29.8          19.8
Mean warmest month     50.0          40.0          32.0
Mean coldest month     24.0          11.0           0.0
Mean daily range
  of temperature       20.0          27.0          35.0
Rain-fall in inches    40.0          20.0          10.0
1 degree equals         320 feet      350 feet      400 feet

Supposing the same formula to apply (which I exceedingly doubt) to
heights above 19,000 feet, 2 degrees would be the mean annual
temperature of the summit of Kinchinjunga, altitude 28,178 feet, the
loftiest known spot on the globe: this is a degree or two higher than
the temperature of the poles of greatest cold on the earth's surface,
and about the temperature of Spitzbergen and Melville island.

The upper limit of phenogamic vegetation coincides with a mean
temperature of 30 degrees on the south flank of Kinchinjunga, and of
22 degrees in Tibet; in both cases annuals and perennial-rooted
herbaceous plants are to be found at elevations corresponding to
these mean temperatures, and often at higher elevations in sheltered
localities. I have assumed the decrease of temperature for a
corresponding amount of elevation to be gradually less in ascending
(1 degree=320 feet at 6000 to 10,000 feet, 1 degree=400 feet at
14,000 to 18,000 feet). My observations appear to prove this, but I
do not regard them as conclusive; supposing them to be so, I
attribute it to a combination of various causes, especially to the
increased elevation and yet unsnowed condition of the mass of land
elevated above 16,000 feet, and consequent radiation of heat; also to
the greater amount of sunshine there; and to the less dense mists
which obstruct the sun's rays at all elevations. In corroboration of
this I may mention that the decrease of temperature with elevation is
much less in summer than in winter, 1 degree of Fahr. being
equivalent to only 250 feet in January between 7000 and 13,000 feet,
and to upwards of 400 feet in July. Again, at Dorjiling (7,430 feet)
the temperature hardly ever rises above 70 degrees in the summer
months, yet it often rises even higher in Tibet at 12,000 to 14,000
feet. On the other hand, the winters, and the winter nights
especially, are disproportionately cold at great heights, the
thermometer falling upwards of 40 degrees below the Dorjiling
temperature at an elevation only 6000 feet higher.

The diurnal distribution of temperature is equally and similarly
affected by the presence of vapour at different altitudes. The lower
and outer ranges of 6000 to 10,000 feet, first receive the diurnal
charge of vapour-loaded southerly winds; those beyond them get more
of the sun's rays, and the rearward ones more still. Though the
summer days of the northern localities are warmer than their
elevation would indicate, the nights are not proportionally cold; for
the light mist of 14,000 feet, which replaces the dense fog of 7000
feet, effectually obstructs nocturnal radiation, though it is less an
obstacle to solar radiation. Clear nights, be it observed, are as
rare at Momay (15,300 feet) as at Dorjiling, the nights if windy
being rainy; or, if calm, cold currents descend from the mountains,
condensing the moist vapours of the valleys, whose narrow floors are
at sunrise bathed in mist at all elevations in Sikkim. The rise and
dispersion of these dense mists, and their collection and
recondensation on the mountains in the morning, is one of the most
magnificent phenomena of the Himalaya, when viewed from a proper
elevation; it commences as soon as the sun appears on the horizon.

The mean daily range of the thermometer at 7000 feet is 13 degrees in
cleared spots, but considerably less in wooded, and certainly
one-third less in the forest itself. At Calcutta, which has almost an
insular climate, it amounts to 17 degrees; at Delhi, which has a
continental one, to 24.6 degrees; and in London to 17.5 degrees.
At 11,000 feet it amounts to about 20 degrees, and at 15,000 feet to
27 degrees. These values vary widely in the different months, being
much less in the summer or rainy months. The following is probably a
fair approximation:--

At 7,000 feet it amounts to 8-9 degrees in Aug. and Sept., and 17
degrees in Dec. At 11,000 feet it amounts to 12 degrees in Aug. and
Sept., and 30 degrees in Dec. At 15,000 feet it amounts to 15 degrees
in Aug. and Sept., and 40 degrees in Dec. At London it amounts to 20
degrees in Aug. and Sept., and 10 degrees in Dec.

The distribution of temperature throughout the day and year varies
less at Dorjiling than in most mountainous countries, owing to the
prevailing moisture, the effect of which is analogous to that of a
circumambient ocean to an island: the difference being, that in the
case of the island the bulk of water maintains an uniform
temperature; in that of Dorjiling the quantity of vapour acts
directly by interfering with terrestrial and solar-radiation, and
indirectly by nurturing a luxuriant vegetation. The result in the
latter case is a climate remarkable for its equability, and similar
in many features to that of New Zealand, South-west Chili, Fuegia,
and the damp west coasts of Scotland and Ireland, and other countries
exposed to moist sea winds.

The mean temperature of the year at Dorjiling, as taken by maxima and
minima thermometers* [The mean of several of the months, thus
deduced, often varies a good deal from the truth, owing to the
unequal diurnal distribution of heat; a very few minutes' sunshine
raises the temperature l0 degrees or 15 degrees above the mean of the
day; which excessive heat (usually transient) the maximum thermometer
registers, and consequently gives too high a mean.] by Dr. Chapman,
is nearly the same as that of March and October: January, the coldest
month, is more than 13.4 degrees colder than the mean of the year;
but the hottest month is only 8.3 degrees warmer than the same mean:
at Calcutta the months vary less from the mean; at Delhi more; and in
London the distribution is wholly different; there being no rains to
modify the summer heat, July is 13 degrees hotter, and January 14
degrees colder than the mean of the year.

This distribution of the seasons has a most important effect upon
vegetation, to which sufficient attention has not been paid by
cultivators of alpine Indian plants; in the first place, though
English winters are cold enough for such, the summers are too hot and
dry; and, in the second place, the great accession of temperature,
causing the buds to burst in spring, occurs in the Himalaya in March,
when the temperature at 7000 feet rises 8 degrees above that of
February, raising the radiating thermometer always above the freezing
point, whence the young leaves are never injured by night frost: in
England the corresponding rise is only 3 degrees, and there is no
such accession of temperature till May, which is 8 degrees warmer
than April; hence, the young foliage of many Himalayan plants is cut
off by night frosts in English gardens early in the season, of which
_Abies Webbiana_ is a conspicuous example.

The greatest heat of the day occurs at Dorjiling about noon, owing to
the prevalent cloud, especially during the rainy months, when the sun
shines only in the mornings, if at all, and the clouds accumulate as
the day advances. According to hourly observations of my own, it
occurred in July at noon, in August at 1 p.m., and in September (the
most rainy month) there was only four-tenths of a degree difference
between the means of noon, 1 p.m., and 2 p.m., but I must refer to
the abstracts at the end of this chapter for evidence of this, and of
the wonderful uniformity of temperature during the rainy months.
In the drier season again, after September, the greatest heat occurs
between 2 and 3 p.m.; in Calcutta the hottest hour is about 2.45
p.m., throughout the year; and in England also about 3 p.m.

The hour whose temperature coincides with the mean of the day
necessarily varies with the distribution of cloud and sunshine; it is
usually about 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.; whereas in Calcutta the same
coincidence occurs at a little before 10 a.m., and in England at
about 8 a.m.

Next to the temperature of the air, observations on that of the earth
are perhaps of the greatest value; both from their application to
horticulture, and from the approximation they afford to the mean
temperature of the week or month in which they are taken. These form
the subject of a separate chapter.

Nocturnal and solar radiation, the one causing the formation of dew
and hoar-frost when the air in the shade is above freezing, end
killing plants by the rapid abstraction of heat from all their
surfaces which are exposed to the clear sky, and the other scorching
the skin and tender plants during the day, are now familiar
phenomena, and particularly engaged my attention during my whole
Indian journey. Two phenomena particularly obstruct radiation in
Sikkim--the clouds and fog from the end of May till October, and the
haze from February till May. Two months alone are usually clear; one
before and one after the rains, when the air, though still humid, is
transparent. The haze has never been fully explained, though a
well-known phenomenon. On the plains of India, at the foot of the
hills, it begins generally in the forenoon of the cold season, with
the rise of the west wind; and, in February especially, obscures the
sun's disc by noon; frequently it lasts throughout the twenty-four
hours, and is usually accompanied by great dryness of the atmosphere.
It gradually diminishes in ascending, and have never experienced it
at 10,000 feet; at 7000, however, it very often, in April, obscures
the snowy ranges 30 miles off, which are bright and defined at
sunrise, and either pale away, or become of a lurid yellow-red,
according to the density of this haze, till they disappear at 10 a.m.
I believe it always accompanies a south-west wind (which is a
deflected current of the north-west) and dry atmosphere in Sikkim.

The observations for solar radiation were taken with a black-bulb
thermometer, and also with actinometers, but the value of the data
afforded by the latter not being fixed or comparative, I shall give
the results in a separate section. (See Appendix K.) From a multitude
of desultory observations, I conclude that at 7,400 feet, 125.7
degrees, or + 67 degrees above the temperature of the air, is the
average maximum effect of the sun's rays on a black-bulb thermometer*
[From the mean of very many observations, I find that 10 degrees is
the average difference at the level of the sea, in India, between two
similar thermometers, with spherical bulbs (half-inch diam.), the one
of black, and the other of plain glass, and both being equally
exposed to the sun's rays.] throughout the year, amounting rarely to
+ 70 degrees and + 80 degrees in the summer months, but more
frequently in the winter or spring. These results, though greatly
above what are obtained at Calcutta, are not much, if at all, above
what may be observed on the plains of India. This effect is much
increased with the elevation. At 10,000 feet in December, at 9 a.m.,
I saw the mercury mount to 132 degrees with a difl: of + 94 degrees,
whilst the temperature of shaded snow hard by was 22 degrees; at
13,100 feet, in January, at 9 a.m., it has stood at 98 degrees, diff.
+ 68.2 degrees; and at 10 a.m., at 114 degrees, diff. + 81.4 degrees,
whilst the radiating thermometer on the snow had fallen at sunrise to
0.7 degree. In December, at 13,500 feet, I have seen it 110 degrees,
diff. + 84 degrees; at 11 a.m., 11,500 feet; 122 degrees, diff: + 82
degrees. This is but a small selection from many instances of the
extraordinary power of solar radiation in the coldest months, at
great elevations.

Nocturnal and terrestrial radiation are even more difficult phenomena
for the traveller to estimate than solar radiation, the danger of
exposing instruments at night being always great in wild countries.
I most frequently used a thermometer graduated on the glass, and
placed in the focus of a parabolic reflector, and a similar one laid
upon white cotton,* [Snow radiates the most powerfully of any
substance I have tried; in one instance, at 13,000 feet, in January,
the thermometer on snow fell to 0.2 degree, which was 10.8 degrees
below the temperature at the time, the grass showing 6.7 degrees; and
on another occasion to l.2 degrees, when the air at the time (before
sunrise) was 21.2 degrees; the difference therefore being 20 degrees.
I have frequently made this observation, and always with a similar
result; it may account for the great injury plants sustain from a
thin covering of ice on their foliage, even when the temperature is
but little below the freezing-point.] and found no material
difference in the mean of many observations of each, though often 1
degree to 2 degrees in individual ones. Avoiding radiation from
surrounding objects is very difficult, especially in wooded
countries. I have also tried the radiating power of grass and the
earth; the temperature of the latter is generally less, and that of
the former greater, than the thermometer exposed on cotton or in the
reflector, but much depends on the surface of the herbage and soil.

The power of terrestrial, like that of solar radiation, increases
with the elevation, but not in an equal proportion. At 7,400 feet,
the mean of all my observations shows a temperature of 35.4 degrees.
During the rains, 3 degrees to 4 degrees is the mean maximum, but the
nights being almost invariably cloudy, it is scarcely on one night
out of six that there is any radiation. From October to December the
amount is greater = 10 degrees to 12, and from January till May
greater still, being as much as 15 degrees. During the winter months
the effect of radiation is often felt throughout the clear days, dew
forming abundantly at 4000 to 8000 feet in the shaded bottoms of
narrow valleys, into which the sun does not penetrate till 10 a.m.,
and from which it disappears at 3 p.m. I have seen the thermometer in
the reflector fall 12 degrees at 10 a.m. in a shaded valley.
This often produces an anomalous effect, causing the temperature in
the shade to fall after sunrise; for the mists which condense in the
bottom of the valleys after midnight disperse after sunrise, but long
before reached by the sun, and powerful radiation ensues, lowering
the surrounding temperature: a fall of 1 degree to  2 degrees after
sunrise of air in the shade is hence common in valleys in November
and December.* [Such is the explanation which I have offered of this
phenomenon in the Hort. Soc. Journal. On thinking over the matter
since, I have speculated upon the probability of this fall of
temperature being due to the absorption of heat that must become
latent on the dispersion of the dense masses of white fog that choke
the valleys at sunrise.] The excessive radiation of the winter months
often gives rise to a curious phenomenon; it causes the formation of
copious dew on the blanket of the traveller's bed, which radiates
heat to the tent roof, and this inside either an open or a closed
tent. I have experienced this at various elevations, from 6000 to
16,000 feet. Whether the minimum temperature be as high as 50
degrees, or but little above zero, the effect is the same, except
that hoar-frost or ice forms in the latter case. Another remarkable
effect of nocturnal radiation is the curl of the alpine rhododendron
leaves in November, which is probably due to the freezing and
consequent expansion of the water in the upper strata of cells
exposed to the sky. The first curl is generally repaired by the
ensuing day's sun, but after two or three nights the leaves become
permanently curled, and remain so till they fall in the following

I have said that the nocturnal radiation in the English spring months
is the great obstacle to the cultivation of many Himalayan plants;
but it is not therefore to be inferred that there is no similar
amount of radiation in the Himalaya; for, on the contrary, in April
its amount is much greater than in England, frequently equalling 13
degrees of difference; and I have seen 16 degrees at 7,500 feet; but
the minimum temperature at the time is 51 degrees, and the absolute
amount of cold therefore immaterial. The mean minimum of London is 38
degrees, and, when lowered 5.5 degrees by radiation, the consequent
cold is very considerable. Mr. Daniell, in his admirable essay on the
climate of London, mentions 17 degrees as the maximum effect of
nocturnal radiation ever observed by him. I have registered 16
degrees in April at Dorjiling; nearly as much at 6000 feet in
February; twice 13 degrees, and once 14.2 degrees in September at
15,500 feet; and 10 degrees in October at 16,800 feet; nearly 13
degrees in January at 7000 feet; 14.5 degrees in February at that
elevation, and, on several occasions, 14.7 degrees at 10,000 feet in

The annual rain-fall at Dorjiling averages 120 inches (or 10 feet),
but varies from 100 to 130 in different years; this is fully three
times the amount of the average English fall,* [The general ideas on
the subject of the English rain-fall are so very vague, that I may be
pardoned for reminding my readers that in 1852, the year of
extraordinary rain, the amounts varied from 28.5 inches in Essex, to
50 inches at Cirencester, and 67.5 (average of five years) at
Plympton St. Mary's, and 102.5 at Holme, on the Dart.] and yet not
one-fourth of what is experienced on the Khasia hills in Eastern
Bengal, where fifty feet of rain falls. The greater proportion
descends between June and September, as much as thirty inches
sometimes falling in one month. From November to February inclusive,
the months are comparatively dry; March and October are characterised
by violent storms at the equinoxes, with thunder, destructive
lightning, and hail.

The rain-gauge takes no account of the enormous deposition from mists
and fogs: these keep the atmosphere in a state of moisture, the
amount of which I have estimated at 0.88 as the saturation-point at
Dorjiling, 0.83 being that of London. In July, the dampest month, the
saturation-point is 0.97; and in December, owing to the dryness of
the air on the neighbouring plains of India, whence dry blasts pass
over Sikkim, the mean saturation-point of the month sometimes falls
as low as 0.69.

The dew-point is on the average of the year 49.3 degrees, or 3
degrees below the mean temperature of the air. In the dampest month
(July) the mean dew-point is only eight-tenths of a degree below the
temperature, whilst in December it sinks 10 degrees below it.
In London the dew-point is on the average 5.6 degrees below the
temperature; none of the English months are so wet as those of
Sikkim, but none are so dry as the Sikkim December sometimes is.

_On the weight of the atmosphere in Sikkim; and its effects on the
human frame._

Of all the phenomena of climate, the weight of the atmosphere is the
most remarkable for its elusion of direct observation, when unaided
by instruments. At the level of the sea, a man of ordinary bulk and
stature is pressed upon by a auperincumbent weight of 30,000 pounds
or 13.5 tons. An inch fall or rise in the barometer shows that this
load is lightened or increased, sometimes in a few hours, by nearly
1,000 pounds; and no notice is taken of it, except by the
meteorologist, or by the speculative physician, seeking the subtle
causes of epidemic and endemic domplaints. At Dorjiling (7,400 feet),
this load is reduced to less than 2,500 pounds, with no appreciable
result whatever on the frame, however suddenly it be transported to
that elevation. And the observation of my own habits convinced me
that I took the same amount of meat, drink, sleep, exercise and work,
not only without inconvenience, but without the slightest perception
of my altered circumstances. On ascending to 14,000 feet, owing to
the diminished supply of oxygen, exercise brings on vertigo and
headache; ascending higher still, lassitude and tension across the
forehead ensue, with retching, and a sense of weight dragging down
the stomach, probably due to dilatation of the air contained in that
organ. Such are the all but invariable effects of high elevations;
varying with most persons according to the suddenness and steepness
of the ascent, the amount and duration of exertion, and the length of
time previously passed at great heights. After having lived for some
weeks at 15,300 feet, I have thence ascended several times to 18,500,
and once above 19,000 feet, without any sensations but lassitude and
quickness of pulse;* [I have in a note to vol. ii. chapter xxiii,
stated that I never experienced in my own person, nor saw in others,
bleeding at the ears, nose, lips, or eyelids.] but in these instances
it required great caution to avoid painful symptoms. Residing at
15,300 feet, however, my functions were wholly undisturbed; nor could
I detect any quickness of pulse or of respiration when the body was
at rest, below 17,000 feet. At that elevation, after resting a party
of eight men for an hour, the average of their and my pulses was
above 100 degrees, both before and after eating; in one case it was
120 degrees, in none below 80 degrees.

Not only is the frame of a transient visitor unaffected (when at
rest) by the pressure being reduced from 30,000 to 13,000 pounds, but
the Tibetan, born and constantly residing at upwards of 14,000 feet,
differs in no respect that can be attributed to diminished pressure,
from the native of the level of the sea. The averaged duration of
life, and the amount of food and exercise is the same; eighty years
are rarely reached by either. The Tibetan too, however inured to cold
and great elevations, still suffers when he crosses passes 18,000 or
19,000 feet high, and apparently neither more nor less than I did.

Liebig remarks (in his "Animal Chemistry") that in an equal number of
respirations,* [For the following note I am indebted to my friend, C.
Muller, Esq., of Patna.--

According to Sir H. Davy, a man consumes 45,504 cubic inches of
oxygen in twenty-four hours, necessitating the inspiration of 147,520
cubic inches of atmospheric air.--At pressure 23 inches, and temp. 60
degrees this volume of atmospheric air (dry) would weigh 35,138•75
grains.-At pressure 30 in., temp. 80°, it would weigh 43,997.83 gr.

The amount of oxygen in atmospheric air is 23.32 per cent. by weight.
The oxygen, then, in 147,520 cubic inches of dry air, at pressure 23
in., temp. 80 degrees, weighs 8,194.35 gr.; and at pressure 30 in.,
temp. 80 degrees, it weighs 10,260.25 gr.

Hence the absolute quantity of oxygen in a given volume of
atmospheric air, when the pressure is 23 in., and the temp. 60
degrees, is 20.14 per cent. less than when the pressure is 30 in. and
the temp. 80 degrees.

When the air at pressure 23 in:, temp. 60 degrees, is saturated with
moisture, the proportion of dry air and aqueous vapour in 100 cubic
inches is as follows:--
Dry air    97.173
Vapour  	2.827
At pressure 30 in., temp. 80 degrees, the proportions are:--
Dry air    96.133
Vapour 		3.867

The effect of aqueous vapour in the sir on the amount of oxygen
available for consumption, is very trifling; and it must not be
forgotten that aqueous vapour supplies oxygen to the system as well
as atmospheric air.] we consume a larger amount of oxygen at the
level of the sea than on a mountain; and it can be shown that under
ordinary circumstances at Dorjiling, 20.14 per cent. less is inhaled
than on the plains of India. Yet the chest cannot expand so as to
inspire more at once, nor is the respiration appreciably quickened;
by either of which means nature would be enabled to make up the
deficiency. It is true that it is difficult to count one's own
respirations, but the average is considered in a healthy man to be
eighteen in a minute; in my own case it is sixteen, an acceleration
of which by three or four could not have been overlooked, in the
repeated trials I made at Dorjiling, and still less the eight
additional inhalations required at 15,000 feet to make up for the
deficiency of oxygen in the air of that elevation.

It has long been surmised that an alpine vegetation may owe some of
its peculiarities to the diminished atmospheric pressure; and that
the latter being a condition which the gardener cannot supply, he can
never successfully cultivate such plants in general. I know of no
foundation for this hypothesis; many plants, natives of the level of
the sea in other parts of the world, and some even of the hot plains
of Bengal, ascend to 12,000 and even 15,000 feet on the Himalaya,
unaffected by the diminished pressure. Any number of species from low
countries may be cultivated, and some have been for ages, at 10,000
to 14,000 feet without change. It is the same with the lower animals;
innumerable instances may with ease be adduced of pressure alone
inducing no appreciable change, whilst there is absence of proof to
the contrary. The phenomena that accompany diminished pressure are
the real obstacles to the cultivation of alpine plants, of which cold
and the excessive climate are perhaps the most formidable.
Plants that grow in localities marked by sudden extremes of heat and
cold, are always very variable in stature, habit, and foliage. In a
state of nature we say the plants "accommodate themselves" to these
changes, and so they do within certain limits; but for one that
survives of all the seeds that germinate in these inhospitable
localities, thousands die. In our gardens we can neither imitate the
conditions of an alpine climate, nor offer others suited to the
plants of such climates.

The mean height of the barometer at Mr. Hodgson's was 23.010, but
varied 0.161 between July, when it was lowest, and October, when it
was highest; following the monthly rise and fall of Calcutta as to
period, but not as to amount (or amplitude); for the mercury at
Calcutta stands in July upwards of half an inch (0.555 Prinsep) lower
than it does in December.

The diurnal tide of atmosphere is as constant as to the time of its
ebb and flow at Dorjiling as at Calcutta; and a number of very
careful observations (made with special reference to this object)
between the level of the plains of India, and 17,000 feet, would
indicate that there is no very material deviation from this at any
elevation in Sikkim. These times are very nearly 9.50 a.m. and about
10 p.m. for the maxima, the 9.50 a.m. very constantly, and the 10
p.m. with more uncertainty; and 4 a.m. and 4 p.m. for the minima, the
afternoon ebb being most true to its time, except during the rains.

At 9.50 a.m. the barometer is at its highest, and falls till 4 p.m.,
when it stands on the average of the year 0.074 of an inch lower;
during the same period the Calcutta fall is upwards of one-tenth of
an inch (0.121 Prinsep).

It has been proved that at considerable elevations in Europe, the
hours of periodic ebb and flow differ materially from those which
prevail at the level of the sea; but this is certainly not the case
in the Sikkim Himalaya.

The amplitude decreases in amount from 0.100 at the foot of the
hills, to 0.074 at 7,000 feet; and the mean of 132 selected
unexceptionable observations, taken at nine stations between 8000 and
15,500 feet, at 9.50 a.m. and 4 p.m., gives an average fall of 0.056
of an inch; a result which is confirmed by interpolation from
numerous horary observations at these and many other elevations,
where I could observe at the critical hours.

That the Calcutta amplitude is not exceptionally great, is shewn by
the register kept at different places in the Gangetic valley and
plains of India, between Saharunpore and the Bay of Bengal. I have
seen apparently trustworthy records of seven* [Calcutta, Berampore,
Benares, Nagpore, Moozufferpore, Delhi, and Saharunpore.] such, and
find that in all it amounts to between 0.084 and 0.120 inch, the mean
of the whole being 0.101 of an inch.

The amplitude is greatest (0.088) in the spring months (March, April,
and May), both at Dorjiling and Calcutta: it is least at both in June
and July, (0.027 at Dorjiling), and rises again in autumn (to .082 in

The horary oscillations also are as remarkably uniform at all
elevations, as the period of ebb and flow: the mercury falls slowly
from 9.50 a.m. (when it is at its highest) till noon, then rapidly
till 3 p.m., and slowly again till 4 p.m.; after which there is
little change until sunset; it rises rapidly between 7 and 9 p.m.,
and a little more till 10 p.m.; thence till 4 a.m. the fall is
inconsiderable, and the great rise occurs between 7 and 9 a.m.

It is well known that these fluctuations of the barometer are due to
the expansion and contraction by heat and moisture of the column of
atmosphere that presses on the mercury, in the cistern of the
instrument: were the air dry, the effect would be a single rise and
fall;* [This law, for which we are indebted to Professor Dove, has
been clearly explained by Colonel Sabine in the appendix to his
translation of Humboldt's "Cosmos," vol. i. p. 457.] the barometer
would stand highest at the hottest of the twenty-four hours, and
lowest at the coldest; and such is the case in arid continental
regions which are perennially dry. That such would also be the case
at Calcutta and throughout the Himalaya of Sikkim, is theoretically
self-evident, and proved by my horary observations taken during the
rainy months of 1848. An inspection of these at the end of this
section (where a column contains the pressure of dry air) shows but
one maximum of pressure, which occurs at the coldest time of the
twenty-four hours (early in the morning), and one minimum in the
afternoon. In the table of mean temperatures of the months, also
appended to this section, will also be found a column allowing the
pressure of dry air, whence it will be seen that there is but one
maximum of the pressure of dry air, occurring at the coldest season
in December, and one minimum, in July. The effect of the vapour is
the same on the annual as upon the diurnal march of the pressure,
producing a double maximum and minimum in the year in one case, and
in the twenty-four hours in the other.

I append a meteorological register of the separate months, but at the
same time must remind the reader that it does not pretend to strict
accuracy. It is founded upon observations made at Dorjiling by Dr.
Chapman in the year 1837, for pressure temperature and wet-bulb only;
the other data and some modifications of the above are supplied from
observations of my own. Those for terrestrial and nocturnal radiation
are accurate as far as they go, that is to say, they are absolute
temperatures taken by myself, which may, I believe, be recorded in
any year, but much higher are no doubt often to be obtained.
The dew-points and saturations are generally calculated from the mean
of two day observations (10 a.m. and 4 p.m.) of the wet-bulb
thermometer, together with the minimum, or are taken from
observations of Daniell's hygrometer; and as I find the mean of the
temperature of 10 a.m., 4 p.m., and the minimum, to coincide within a
few tenths with the mean temperature of the whole day, I assume that
the mean of the wet-bulb observations of the same hours will give a
near approach to that of the twenty-four hours. The climate of
Dorjiling station has been in some degree altered by extensive
clearances of forest, which render it more variable, more exposed to
night frosts and strong sun-heat, and to drought, the drying up of
small streams being one direct consequence. My own observations were
taken at Mr. Hodgson's house, elevated 7,430 feet, the position of
which I have indicated at the commencement of this section, where the
differences of climate due to local causes are sufficiently indicated
to show that in no two spots could similar meteorological results be
obtained. At Mr. Hodgson's, for instance, the uniformity of
temperature and humidity is infinitely more remarkable than at Dr.
Chapman's, possibly from my guarding more effectually against
radiation, and from the greater forests about Mr. Hodgson's house.
I have not, however, ventured to interfere with the temperature
columns on this account.


                            Jan.   Feb.   Mar.   Apr.    May   June
Pressure of Atmosphere*   23.307   .305   .307   .280   .259   .207
Range of Pressure           .072   .061   .083   .085   .088   .067
Mean Shade                  40.0   42.1   50.7   55.9   57.6   61.2
Max. Shade                  56.0   57.0   66.5   68.5   69.0   71.0
Max. Sun                   119.0  124.0  120.0  125.0  125.0  126.2
Greatest Diff.              72.0   78.0   60.0   66.0   65.0   62.2
Mean Max. Shade             47.2   50.0   58.4   63.7   65.3   66.7
Minim. Shade                29.0   25.5   37.0   38.0   38.0   51.5
Minim. Rad.                 16.0   23.0   27.8   33.0   40.0   47.0
Greatest Diff.              12.7   15.3    8.7   16.0   10.0    4.8
Mean Minim. Shade           32.8   34.2   43.1   48.1   50.0   55.8
Mean Daily Range of Temp.   14.4   15.8   15.3   15.6   15.3   10.9
Sunk Therm.                 46.0   48.0   50.0   58.0   61.0   62.0
Mean Dew-Point              34.3   37.2   45.8   49.8   54.4   59.5
Mean Dryness                 5.1    3.9    5.8    6.6    2.7    2.0
Force of Vapour             .216   .239   .323   .371   .434   .515
Pressure of Dry Air       23.091   .066   .084 22.909   .825   .692
Mean Saturation              .84    .87    .82    .80    .91    .93
Rain in Inches              1.72   0.92   1.12   2.52   9.25  26.96

                            July   Aug.   Sep.   Oct.   Nov.   Dec.   Mean
Pressure of Atmosphere*   23.203   .230   .300   .372   .330   .365 23.289
Range of Pressure           .062   .070   .082   .075   .078   .062   .074
Mean Shade                  61.4   61.7   59.9   58.0   50.0   43.0   53.5
Max. Shade                  69.5   70.0   70.0   68.0   63.0   56.0   65.4
Max. Sun                   130.0  133.0  142.0  133.0  123.0  108.0  125.7
Greatest Diff.              62.0   62.0   70.0   65.0   68.0   77.2   67.3
Mean Max. Shade             65.5   66.1   64.7   66.5   56.5   51.6   60.2
Minim. Shade                56.0   54.5   51.5   43.5   38.0   32.5   41.3
Minim. Rad.                 52.0   50.0   47.5   32.0   30.0   26.0   35.4
Greatest Diff.               3.5    3.5   10.0   12.0   12.0   10.0    9.9
Mean Minim. Shade           57.3   57.4   55.2   49.5   43.5   34.9   46.8
Mean Daily Range of Temp.    8.2    8.7    9.5   17.0   13.0   16.7   13.4
Sunk Therm.                 62.2   62.0   61.0   60.0   55.0   49.0   56.2
Mean Dew-Point              60.7   60.4   58.5   52.5   46.5   31.8   49.4
Mean Dryness                 0.8    1.1    1.4    4.2    3.2   10.6    4.0
Force of Vapour             .535   .530   .498   .407   .331   .198   .383
Pressure of Dry Air       22.668   .700   .802   .865   .999 23.165 22.906
Mean Saturation              .97    .96    .95    .86    .90    .69    .88
Rain in Inches             25.34  29.45  15.76   8.66   0.11   0.45    Sum

*These are taken from Dr. Chapman's Table; and present a greater
annual range (=0.169) than my observations in 1848-9, taken at Mr.
Hodgson's, which is higher than Dr. Chapman's; or Mr. Muller's, which
is a little lower, and very near.

_Horary Observations at Jillapahar, Dorjiling, Alt. 7,430 feet._

JULY, 1848

No. of
  Observations      7    23    27    22    20    26    12    11    25
Hour            1 a.m.    8     9    10    11  Noon  1 p.m.   2     3
  corrected    22.877  .882  .884 +.899  .899  .884  .876  .866  .852
Temp. Air        59.6  62.1  62.6  63.5  64.1  65.0  64.1  64.4  64.8
D.P.             58.9  60.6  61.3  61.7  62.3  63.1  61.7  61.0  62.6
Diff.             0.7   1.5   1.3   1.8   1.8   1.9   2.4   3.4   2.2
Tens. of
  Vapour         .504  .534  .546  .554  .565  .580  .566  .541  .571
Weight of
  Vapour         5.65  6.03  6.10  6.12  6.27  6.44  6.13  6.00  6.32
Humidity         .988  .950  .960  .945  .945  .940  .923  .892  .930
Press. of
  Dry Air      22.373  .348  .338  .345  .334  .304  .310  .325  .281

No. of
  Observations     23    13    10     6     6    22     6     6    19
Hour            4 p.m.    5     6     7     8     9    10    11   M.n.
  corrected    22.846 -.840  .845  .853  .867  .878  .885 +.887  .887
Temp. Air        64.1  64.7  63.7  62.7  61.0  60.7  60.5  60.2  59.8
D.P.             61.7  64.0  61.5  61.1  59.5  59.4  59.5  59.2  59.1
Diff.             2.4   0.7   2.2   1.6   1.5   1.3   1.0   1.0   0.7
Tens. of
  Vapour         .554  .597  .549  .542  .515  .512  .514  .508  .507
Weight of
  Vapour         6.13  6.62  6.12  6.03  5.74  5.72  5.75  5.70  5.68
Humidity         .924  .978  .928  .948  .952  .960  .968  .965  .975
Press. of
  Dry Air      22.292 -.243  .296  .311  .352  .366  .371  .379 +.382


No. of
  Observations     15    26    28    28    24    23    21    21    21
Hour            1 a.m.    8     9    10    11  Noon  1 p.m.   2     3
  corrected    22.909  .904  .915 +.917  .915  .905  .898  .884  .873
Temp. Air        59.8  62.1  63.1  64.3  64.7  64.7  65.3  65.0  64.8
D.P.             59.5  61.5  61.9  62.7  63.1  63.4  63.3  63.4  63.1
Diff.             0.3   0.6   1.2   1.6   1.6   1.3   2.0   1.6   1.7
Tens. of
  Vapour         .514  .549  .558  .572  .580  .586  .584  .586  .579
Weight of
  Vapour         5.70  6.13  6.20  6.35  6.42  6.50  6.48  6.50  6.43
Humidity         .992  .980  .962  .950  .948  .958  .940  .950  .943
Press. of
  Dry Air     +22.395  .355  .357  .345  .335  .319  .314  .298  .294

No. of
  Observations     19    19    19    19    19    19    19    19    19
Hour            4 p.m.    5     6     7     8     9    10    11   M.n.
  corrected    22.855 -.853  .863  .865  .878  .890 +.823  .892  .889
Temp. Air        63.9  63.2  62.3  61.6  61.1  60.7  60.3  60.1  60.0
D.P.             62.4  61.7  60.8  60.4  60.2  60.0  59.7  59.7  59.4
Diff.             1.5   1.5   1.5   1.2   0.9   0.7   0.6   0.4   0.6
Tens. of
  Vapour         .568  .554  .538  .531  .527  .523  .518  .517  .513
Weight of
  Vapour         6.30  6.15  6.00  5.92  5.88  5.85  5.78  5.79  5.73
Humidity         .952  .952  .952  .952  .970  .976  .980  .988  .980
Press. of
  Dry Air       -.287  .299  .325  .334  .351  .367  .375  .375  .376


No. of
  Observations     28    29    28    24     23    23    23    23    23
Hour            8 a.m.    9    10    11   Noon  1 p.m.   2     3     4
  corrected    23.000  .013 +.018  .009 22.995  .980  .962  .947 -.944
Temp. Air        59.2  60.1  60.8  61.6   62.4  62.7  62.8  62.3  61.8
D.P.             58.1  58.5  59.5  60.0   60.5  60.5  60.4  60.0  59.9
Diff.             1.1   1.6   1.3   1.6    1.9   2.2   2.4   2.3   1.9
Tens. of
  Vapour         .492  .497  .514  .523   .533  .532  .531  .522  .521
Weight of
  Vapour         5.50  5.57  5.77  5.83   5.93  5.92  5.90  5.83  5.82
Humidity         .968  .945  .958  .950   .942  .942  .925  .924  .940
Press. of
  Dry Air      22.508  .516  .504  .506   .462  .448  .431  .425 -.423

No. of
  Observations     19    19    20    21    22    24    24    23
Hour            5 p.m.    6     7     8     9    10    11   M.n.
  corrected    22.944  .948  .958  .975  .986 +.991  .989  .994
Temp. Air        60.3  59.4  58.7  58.2  57.8  57.4  57.0  56.7
D.P.             58.6  58.4  57.4  57.0  56.6  56.4  55.9  55.4
Diff.             1.7   1.0   1.3   1.2   1.2   1.0   1.1   1.3
Tens. of
  Vapour         .498  .496  .479  .473  .467  .463  .456  .449
Weight of
  Vapour         5.58  5.58  5.60  5.33  5.25  5.23  5.15  5.07
Humidity         .940  .968  .960  .962  .960  .968  .962  .927
Press. of
  Dry Air        .446  .452  .479  .502  .519  .528  .533 +.545

OCTOBER (22 days)

No. of
  Observations     11    19    20    20    19    13    15    13    13    14
Hour       6-6.30 a.m.    7     8     9    10    11  Noon  1 p.m.   2     3
  corrected    23.066  .072  .086  .099 +.100  .079  .072  .055  .033  .027
Temp. Air        54.4  54.3  55.2  56.3  57.1  57.6  57.9  58.0  57.7  57.9
D.P.             52.7  52.3  53.7  54.4  55.5  55.6  56.1  56.4  56.6  56.2
Diff.             1.7   2.0   1.5   1.9   1.6   2.0   1.8   1.6   1.1   1.7
Tens. of
  Vapour         .4.9  .403  .423  .434  .450  .451  .459  .463  .466  .460
Weight of
  Vapour         4.65  4.58  4.78  4.90  5.07  5.08  5.15  5.17  5.25  5.16
Humidity         .943  .925  .950  .935  .942  .935  .940  .950  .962  .940
Press. of
  Dry Air     +22.657 +.669  .663  .665  .650  .628  .613  .592  .567  .567

No. of
  Observations     16    13     6     7     3     7    14    18    14
Hour            4 p.m.    5     6     7     8     9    10    11   M.n.
  corrected    23.024 -.022  .033  .045  .038  .061 +.072  .067  .068
Temp. Air        57.9  56.6  55.9  55.4  53.7  55.1  54.6  54.5  54.1
D.P.             56.1  54.8  54.4  53.8  53.3  54.1  53.0  53.0  52.8
Diff.             1.8   1.8   1.5   1.6   0.4   1.0   1.6   1.5   1.3
Tens. of
  Vapour         .458  .439  .433  .424  .417  .429  .413  .413  .411
Weight of
  Vapour         5.15  4.98  4.90  4.80  4.75  4.83  4.82  4.82  4.65
Humidity         .940  .948  .950  .950  .990  .965  .949  .950  .962
Press. of
  Dry Air       -.566  .583  .600  .621  .621  .632  .659  .654  .657



My observations for temperature and wet-bulb being for the most part
desultory, taken at different dates, and under very different
conditions of exposure, etc., it is obvious that those at one station
are hardly, if at all, comparative with those of another, and I have
therefore selected only such as were taken at the same date and hour
with others taken at the Calcutta Observatory, or as can easily be
reduced; which thus afford a standard (however defective in many
respects) for a comparison. I need hardly remind my reader that the
vapour-charged wind of Sikkim is the southerly one, which blows over
Calcutta; that in its passage northwards to Sikkim in the summer
months, it traverses the heated plains at the foot of the Himalaya,
and ascending that range, it discharges the greater part of its
moisture (120 to 140 inches annually) over the outer Himalayan
ranges, at elevations of 4000 to 8000 feet. The cooling effect of the
uniform covering of forest on the Sikkim ranges is particularly
favourable to this deposition, but the slope of the mountains being
gradual, the ascending currents are not arrested and cooled so
suddenly as in the Khasia mountains, where the discharge is
consequently much greater. The heating of the atmosphere, too, over
the dry plains at the foot of the outer range, increases farther its
capacity for the retention of vapour, and also tends to render the
rain-fall less sudden and violent than on the Khasia, where the south
wind blows over the cool expanse of the Jheels. It will be seen from
the following observations, that in Sikkim the relative humidity of
the atmosphere remains pretty constantly very high in the summer
months, and at all elevations, except in the rearward valleys; and
even there a humid atmosphere prevails up to 14,000 feet, everywhere
within the influence of the snowy mountains. The uniformly high
temperature which prevails throughout the summer, even at elevations
of 17,000 and 18,000 feet, is no doubt proximately due to the
evolution of heat during the condensation of these vapours. It will
be seen by the pages of my journal, that continued sunshine, and the
consequent heating of the soil, is almost unknown during the summer,
at any elevation on the outer or southward ranges of Dorjiling: but
the sunk thermometer proves that in advancing northward into the
heart of the mountains and ascending, the sun's effect is increased,
the temperature of the earth becoming in summer considerably higher
than that of the air. With regard to the observations themselves,
they may be depended upon as comparable with those of Calcutta, the
instruments having been carefully compared, and the cases of
interpolation being few. The number of observations taken at each
station is recorded in a separate column; where only one is thus
recorded, it is not to be regarded as a single reading, but the mean,
of several taken during an hour or longer period. I have rejected all
solitary observations, even when accompanied by others at Calcutta;
and sundry that were, for obvious reasons, likely to mislead. Where
many observations were taken at one place, I have divided them into
sets, corresponding to the hours at which alone the Calcutta
temperature and wet-bulb thermometer are recorded,* [Sunrise; 9.50
a.m.; noon; 2.40 p.m.; 4 p.m., and sunset.] in order that
meteorologists may apply them to the solution of other questions
relating to the distribution of heat and moisture. The Dorjiling
observations, and those in the immediate neighbourhood of that
station, appeared to me sufficiently numerous to render it worth
while classing them in months, and keeping them in a series by
themselves. The tensions of vapour are worked from the wet-bulb
readings by Apjohn's formula and tables, corrected for the height of
the barometer at the time. The observations, except where otherwise
noted, are taken by myself.

SERIES I. _Observations made at or near Dorjiling._


No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
15      The Dale*       6956 ft.  9.50 a.m.  42.9  32.4  10.5   .202
15      Mr. Muller's    ...       Noon       45.8  33.8  12.0   .212
10      ...             ...       2.40 p.m.  48.3  37.4  10.9   .241
 8      ...             ...       4 p.m.     48.6  37.8  10.8   .244
 9      ...             ...       Sunset     46.5  37.1   9.4   .238
57      ...             ...          Mean    46.4  35.7  10.7   .227

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
15      The Dale*       6956 ft.  9.50 a.m.  67.5  55.3  12.2   .446
15      Mr. Muller's    ...       Noon       72.9  55.7  17.2   .455
10      ...             ...       2.40 p.m.  76.1  55.1  21.0   .444
 8      ...             ...       4 p.m.     75.1  54.8  20.3   .440
 9      ...             ...       Sunset     71.8  54.9  16.9   .441
57      ...             ...          Mean    72.7  55.2  17.5   .445

*Observations to which the asterisk is affixed were taken by
Mr. Muller.

Dorjiling.--Humidity         0.700           Calcutta   0.562
    ,,      Vapour in cubic foot
              of atmosphere  2.63 gr.           ,,      4.86 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  Sunrise    32.8  30.1   2.7   .186
 6      Mr. Hodgson's   ...       9.50 a.m.  39.5  34.7   4.8   .219
 3      ...             ...       Noon       42.4  38.0   4.4   .246
 5      ...             ...       2.40 p.m.  41.9  37.8   4.1   .244
 5      ...             ...       4 p.m.     41.1  38.5   2.6   .250
 5      ...             ...       Sunset     38.7  35.6   3.1   .226
13      ...             ...       Miscel.    41.9  39.9   2.0   .263
 4      Saddle of road  7412 ft.  Do.        41.1  36.4   4.7   .233
         at Sinchul.
 1      Pacheem.        7258 ft.  Do.        39.8  38.7   1.1   .252
45      ...             ...          Mean    39.9  36.6   3.3   .235

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  Sunrise    51.5  48.5   3.0   .354
 6      Mr. Hodgson's   ...       9.50 a.m.  66.9  55.1  11.8   .444
 3      ...             ...       Noon       74.1  51.7  22.4   .395
 5      ...             ...       2.40 p.m.  78.3  51.4  26.9   .391
 5      ...             ...       4 p.m.     77.4  59.5  17.9   .514
 5      ...             ...       Sunset     72.4  54.7  17.7   .438
13      ...             ...       Miscel.    77.9  60.1  17.8   .525
 4      Saddle of road  7412 ft.  Do.        67.7  57.2  10.5   .476
         at Sinchul.
 1      Pacheem.        7258 ft.  Do.        71.6  50.5  21.2   .379
45      ...             ...          Mean    70.9  54.3  16.6   .435

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.890          Calcutta   0.580
    ,,      Weight of vapour  2.75 gr.          ,,      4.86 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  Sunrise    36.9  34.7   2.2   .219
18        1850          ...       9.50 a.m.  42.9  38.6   4.3   .251
12        ...           ...       Noon       44.8  41.3   3.5   .276
12        ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  44.8  37.4   7.4   .241
17        ...           ...       4 p.m.     44.0  35.6   8.4   .226
19        ...           ...       Sunset     42.4  35.8   6.6   .228
13      The Dale*       6956 ft.  Miscel.    40.8  35.1   5.7   .222
97        ...           ...          Mean    42.4  36.9   5.4   .238

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  Sunrise    60.0  54.2   5.8   .431
18        1850          ...       9.50 a.m.  72.8  58.8  14.0   .503
12        ...           ...       Noon       79.8  58.7  21.2   .501
12        ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  82.4  57.9  24.5   .487
17        ...           ...       4 p.m.     81.1  58.1  23.0   .492
19        ...           ...       Sunset     76.3  60.7  15.6   .536
13      The Dale*       6956 ft.  Miscel.    69.9  59.8  10.1   .518
97        ...           ...          Mean    74.6  58.3  16.3   .495

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.828          Calcutta   0.590
    ,,      Weight of vapour  2.75 gr.          ,,      5.40 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
10      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  44.2  42.7   1.5   .290
 8        1850          ...       Noon       45.5  43.0   2.5   .293
 5        ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  46.4  44.0   2.4   .303
 8        ...           ...       4 p.m.     45.5  43.4   2.1   .297
 6        ...           ...       Sunset     43.1  41.5   1.6   .278
 3      Pacheem.        7258 ft.  Misc.      44.8  44.6   0.2   .310
40        ...           ...          Mean    44.9  43.2   1.7   .295

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
10      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  81.6  64.1  17.5   .602
 8        1850          ...       Noon       88.2  57.0  31.2   .472
 5        ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  91.3  53.2  38.1   .416
 8        ...           ...       4 p.m.     90.1  52.0  38.1   .399
 6        ...           ...       Sunset     82.9  63.7  19.2   .590
 3      Pacheem.        7258 ft.  Misc.      85.0  74.8  10.2   .848
40        ...           ...          Mean    86.5  60.8  25.7   .555

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.940          Calcutta   0.438
    ,,      Weight of vapour  3.42 gr.          ,,      5.72 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  57.0  40.2  16.8   .266
 3        1849          ...       Noon       59.8  44.1  15.7   .305
 1        ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  60.2  44.4  15.8   .308
 7      Dr. Campbell's  6932 ft.  9.50 a.m.  61.8  53.3   8.5   .417
 2        1850          ...       Noon       65.4  52.8  12.6   .411
 4        ...           ...       4 p.m.     57.5  53.7  13.8   .423
 3        ...           ...       Sunset     56.9  51.4   5.5   .392
23        ...           ...          Mean    59.8  48.6  11.3   .360

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  90.3  71.3  19.0   .758
 3        1849          ...       Noon       97.0  64.5  32.5   .607
 1        ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  97.7  73.4  24.3   .812
 7      Dr. Campbell's  6932 ft.  9.50 a.m.  86.7  66.3  20.4   .644
 2        1850          ...       Noon       91.3  68.8  22.5   .699
 4        ...           ...       4 p.m.     88.6  72.1  16.5   .778
 3        ...           ...       Sunset     82.8  73.0   9.8   .800
23        ...           ...          Mean    90.6  69.9  20.7   .728

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.684          Calcutta   0.523
    ,,      Weight of vapour  3.98 gr.          ,,      7.65 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Smith's Hotel,  6863 ft.  Misc.      57.2  55.0   2.2   .443
45      Colinton,*      7179 ft.  Misc.      60.4  57.9  12.5   .466
48        ...           ...          Mean    58.8  56.5  12.4   .455

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 3      Smith's Hotel,  6863 ft.  Misc.      88.6  78.4  10.2   .951
45      Colinton,*      7179 ft.  Misc.      90.0  77.2  12.8   .917
48        ...           ...          Mean    89.3  77.8  11.5   .934

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.926          Calcutta   0.698
    ,,      Weight of vapour  5.22 gr.          ,,      9.90 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
40      Colinton*       7179 ft.  Misc.      60.9  57.6  13.3   .483

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
40      Colinton*       7179 ft.  Misc.      85.5  78.4   7.1   .952

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.895          Calcutta   0.800
    ,,      Weight of vapour  5.39 gr.          ,,     10.17 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 18     Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  63.2  61.4   1.8   .548
 25       1848          ...       Noon       65.0  62.6   2.4   .570
 24       ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  64.7  62.3   2.4   .565
 16       ...           ...       4 p.m.     63.8  61.5   2.3   .550
 31     The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     60.2  58.7   1.5   .537
 31       1848          ...       2 p.m.     66.3  63.3   3.0   .621
 31       ...           ...       6 p.m.     63.0  60.9   2.1   .575
176       ...           ...          Mean    63.7  61.5   2.2   .567

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 18     Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  87.0  79.4   7.6   .983
 25       1848          ...       Noon       89.0  80.0   9.0  1.001
 24       ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  88.1  79.4   8.7   .983
 16       ...           ...       4 p.m.     87.2  79.5   7.7   .985
 31     The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     81.3  79.0   2.3   .969
 31       1848          ...       2 p.m.     88.0  79.6   8.4   .989
 31       ...           ...       6 p.m.     84.8  79.2   5.6   .977
176       ...           ...          Mean    86.5  79.4   7.0   .984

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.929          Calcutta   0.800
    ,,      Weight of vapour  6.06 gr.          ,,     10.45 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 23     Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  64.2  62.4   1.8   .567
 21       1848          ...       Noon       64.7  63.3   1.4   .584
 17       ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  64.7  62.8   1.9   .574
 13       ...           ...       4 p.m.     63.9  62.5   1.4   .568
 31     The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     60.5  59.5   1.0   .551
 31       1848          ...       2 p.m.     65.3  63.6   1.7   .628
 31       ...           ...       6 p.m.     62.8  61.8   1.0   .591
167       ...           ...          Mean    63.7  62.3   1.5   .580

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 23     Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  85.8  79.1   6.7   .973
 21       1848          ...       Noon       87.2  79.2   8.0   .976
 17       ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  87.4  79.3   8.1   .979
 13       ...           ...       4 p.m.     86.5  79.5   7.0   .984
 31     The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     80.8  78.8   2.0   .962
 31       1848          ...       2 p.m.     87.2  79.2   8.0   .976
 31       ...           ...       6 p.m.     83.7  78.7   5.0   .959
167       ...           ...          Mean    85.5  79.1   6.4   .973

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.955          Calcutta   0.818
    ,,      Weight of vapour  6.25 gr.          ,,     10.35 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 28     Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  60.8  59.3   1.5   .511
 23       1848          ...       Noon       62.4  60.3   2.1   .528
 23       ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  62.4  59.6   2.8   .516
 21       ...           ...       4 p.m.     62.0  59.6   2.4   .516
 30     The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     57.4  56.2   1.2   .495
 30       1848          ...       2 p.m.     64.9  60.8   4.1   .573
 30       ...           ...       6 p.m.     60.8  59.0   1.8   .543
185       ...           ...          Mean    61.5  59.3   2.3   .526

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 28     Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  9.50 a.m.  87.0  78.4   8.6   .952
 23       1848          ...       Noon       88.5  78.1  10.4   .943
 23       ...           ...       2.40 p.m.  88.1  77.4  10.7   .922
 21       ...           ...       4 p.m.     86.9  77.1   9.8   .914
 30     The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     80.9  78.3   2.6   .948
 30       1848          ...       2 p.m.     88.8  77.4  11.4   .923
 30       ...           ...       6 p.m.     84.7  76.6   8.1   .899
185       ...           ...          Mean    86.4  77.6   8.8   .929

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.932          Calcutta   0.760
    ,,      Weight of vapour  5.72 gr.          ,,      9.88 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 6      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  Noon       55.9  55.3   0.6   .446
 6        1848          ...       2.40 p.m.  55.7  54.9   0.8   .440
 6        ...           ...       4 p.m.     55.6  54.9   0.7   .441
 4      Goong.          7436 ft.  Misc.      48.3  48.3   0.0   .352
 8      ditto           7441 ft.  ditto      51.2  50.2   1.0   .376
 8      The Dale*       6952 ft.  6 a.m.     55.2  52.7   2.5   .439
17        ...           ...       2 p.m.     61.4  56.3   5.1   .497
19        ...           ...       6 p.m.     56.9  54.2   2.7   .463
74        ...           ...          Mean    55.0  53.4   1.7   .432

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 6      Jillapahar,     7430 ft.  Noon       84.4  75.3   9.1   .863
 6        1848          ...       2.40 p.m.  86.0  73.3  12.7   .808
 6        ...           ...       4 p.m.     85.2  74.4  10.8   .837
 4      Goong.          7436 ft.  Misc.      81.2  73.7   7.5   .819
 8      ditto           7441 ft.  ditto      80.7  66.9  13.8   .657
 8      The Dale*       6952 ft.  6 a.m.     76.1  74.2   1.9   .834
17        ...           ...       2 p.m.     87.0  71.2  15.8   .756
19        ...           ...       6 p.m.     82.8  73.9   8.9   .824
74        ...           ...          Mean    82.9  72.9  10.1   .800

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.950          Calcutta   0.658
    ,,      Weight of vapour  4.74 gr.          ,,      8.55 gr.

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 4      The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     45.6  41.4   4.2   .277
 8      Nov. & Dec.     ...       2 p.m.     60.0  48.3  11.7   .355
 6        1848          ...       6 p.m.     50.6  44.7   5.9   .311
 9      December,       ...       2 p.m.     49.7  41.7   8.0   .280
19        1848          ...       6 p.m.     44.0  40.5   3.5   .269
46        ...           ...          Mean    49.9  43.3   6.7   .298

No. of
Obs.    Place           Elev.     Hour       Tp.   D.P.  Diff.  Tens.
 4      The Dale,*      6952 ft.  6 a.m.     67.9  64.7   3.2   .610
 8      Nov. & Dec.     ...       2 p.m.     83.3  65.2  18.1   .621
 6        1848          ...       6 p.m.     77.3  63.1  14.2   .579
 9      December,       ...       2 p.m.     79.3  59.0  20.3   .505
19        1848          ...       6 p.m.     75.8  62.6  13.2   .569
46        ...           ...          Mean    76.7  62.9  13.8   .577

Dorjiling.--Humidity          0.798          Calcutta   0.640
    ,,      Weight of vapour  3.40 gr.          ,,      6.27 gr.

_Comparison of Dorjiling and Calutta._


No. of                                           Diff.
Obs.      Month         Dorjiling    Calcutta    Dorjiling
102       January       -.795         .571       +.224
 97       February       .828         .590       +.238
 40       March          .940        -.438       +.502
 23       April          .684         .523       +.161
 48       May            .926         .698       +.228
 40       June           .895         .800       +.095
176       July           .929         .800       +.129
167       August        +.955        +.818       +.136
185       September      .932         .760       +.172
 74       October        .950         .658       +.292
 46       Nov. and Dec.  .798         .640       +.158
998               Mean  0.876        0.663       +.212


No. of                                           Diff.
Obs.      Month         Dorjiling    Calcutta    Calcutta
102       January       -2.68        -4.80       +2.12
 97       February       2.75         5.40       +2.65
 40       March          3.42         5.72       +2.30
 23       April          3.98         7.65       +3.67
 48       May            5.22         9.90       +4.62
 40       June           5.39        10.17       +4.78
176       July           6.06        10.05       +3.99
167       August        +6.25       +10.35       +4.10
185       September      5.72         9.88       +4.16
 74       October        4.74         8.55       +3.81
 46       Nov. and Dec.  3.40         6.27       +2.87
998               Mean   4.51         8.07       +3.55

It is hence evident, from nearly 1,000 comparative observations, that
the atmosphere is relatively more humid at Dorjiling than at
Calcutta, throughout the year. As the southerly current, to which
alone is due all the moisture of Sikkim, traverses 200 miles of land,
and discharges from sixty to eighty inches of rain before arriving at
Dorjiling, it follows that the whole atmospheric column is relatively
drier over the Himalaya than over Calcutta; that the absolute amount
of vapour, in short, is less than it would otherwise be at the
elevation of Dorjiling, though the relative humidity is so great.
A glance at the table at the end of this section appears to confirm
this; for it is there shown that, at the base of the Himalaya, at an
elevation of only 250 feet higher than Calcutta, the absolute amount
of vapour is less, and of relative humidity greater, than
at Calcutta.

SERIES II.--_Observations at various Stations and Elevations in
the Himalaya of East Nepal and Sikkim._

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
--------------------------------------------------------------------- 3     Katong Ghat.              735   Dec.   60.2  55.3   4.9   .447
        Teesta river
 2     Great Rungeet, at bridge  818   April  82.8  63.5  19.3   .588
 1      Ditto                    818   May    77.8  60.3  17.5   .528
 3     Tambur river, E. Nepal   1388   Nov.   60.6  57.0   3.6   .473
 1      Ditto                   1457   Nov.   64.2  59.1   5.1   .507
 6     Bhomsong, Teesta river   1596   Dec.   58.6  52.0   6.6   .399
 1      Ditto                   1596   May    68.2  66.4   1.8   .647
 5     Little Rungeet           1672   Jan.   51.0  50.2   0.8   .377
 5     Pemiongchi,
        Great Rungeet           1840   Dec.   54.6  53.7   0.9   .424
11     Punkabaree               1850   March  70.1  55.6  14.5   .472
        Ditto                   1850   May    73.5  68.3   5.2   .687
10     Guard house              1864   April  73.7  63.8   9.9   .592
        (Gt. Rungeet)
48                                      Mean  66.3  58.8   7.5   .512

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 3     Katong Ghat.              735   Dec.   73.2  56.7  16.5   .468
        Teesta river
 2     Great Rungeet, at bridge  818   April  95.8  61.9  33.9   .557
 1      Ditto                    818   May    91.7  78.3  13.4   .947
 3     Tambur river, E. Nepal   1388   Nov.   73.3  62.7  10.6   .571
 1      Ditto                   1457   Nov.   77.3  63.4  13.9   .585
 6     Bhomsong, Teesta river   1596   Dec.   71.6  57.0  14.6   .474
 1      Ditto                   1596   May    82.6  77.4   5.2   .923
 5     Little Rungeet           1672   Jan.   58.5  58.0   0.5   .489
 5     Pemiongchi,
        Great Rungeet           1840   Dec.   73.5  66.2   7.3   .642
11     Punkabaree               1850   March  79.2  62.6  16.6   .570
        Ditto                   1850   May    83.7  77.9   5.8   .938
10     Guard house              1864   April  92.4  67.0  25.4   .660
        (Gt. Rungeet)
48                                      Mean  79.4  65.8  13.6   .652

Humidity          0.717          Calcutta   0.663
Weight of vapour  5.57 gr.          ,,      6.88 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 2     Singdong                 2116   Dec.   60.5  53.4   7.1   .419
 8     Mywa Guola, E. Nepal     2132   Nov.   66.2  57.5   8.7   .481
 3     Pemmi river, E. Nepal    2256   Nov.   55.6  53.9   1.7   .426
 3     Tambur river, E. Nepal   2545   Nov.   57.3  51.6   5.7   .394
 2     Blingbong (Teesta)       2684   May    72.6  64.0   8.6   .597
 8     Lingo (Teesta)           2782   May    75.8  67.3   8.5   .666
12     Serriomsa (Teesta)       2820   Dec.   64.1  56.8   7.3   .469
 8     Lingmo (Teesta)          2849   May    68.6  64.6   4.0   .610
 3      Ditto                   2952   Dec.   56.4  53.5   2.9   .420
49                                      Mean  64.1  58.1   6.1   .498

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 2     Singdong                 2116   Dec.   72.1  52.9  19.2   .411
 8     Mywa Guola, E. Nepal     2132   Nov.   75.7  68.7   7.0   .697
 3     Pemmi river, E. Nepal    2256   Nov.   62.9  62.3   0.6   .566
 3     Tambur river, E. Nepal   2545   Nov.   75.0  63.7  11.3   .591
 2     Blingbong (Teesta)       2684   May    81.7  73.6   8.1   .817
 8     Lingo (Teesta)           2782   May    90.7  77.7  13.0   .932
12     Serriomsa (Teesta)       2820   Dec.   70.8  62.4   8.4   .567
 8     Lingmo (Teesta)          2849   May    87.9  74.9  13.0   .851
 3      Ditto                   2952   Dec.   69.5  66.5   3.0   .647
49                                      Mean  76.3  67.0   9.3   .675

Humidity          0.820          Calcutta   0.740
Weight of vapour  5.45 gr.          ,,      7.13 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 5     Kulhait river            3159   Jan.   49.8  47.0   2.8   .337
 9     Ratong river             3171   Jan.   44.2  43.0   1.2   .294
 3     Tambur river             3201   Nov.   53.0  50.0   3.0   .373
 2     Chingtam                 3404   Nov.   54.8  49.0   5.8   .360
 2     Tikbotang                3763   Dec.   56.5  53.4   3.1   .419
 7     Myong Valley             3782   Oct.   61.4  58.4   3.0   .496
 7     Iwa river                3783   Dec.   47.5  45.6   1.9   .321
 1     Ratong river             3790   Jan.   56.2  41.1  15.1   .275
 3     Tukcham                  3849   Nov.   68.8  65.4   3.4   .625
 1     Pacheem village          3855   Jan.   54.5  46.3   8.2   .329
 1     Yankoon                  3867   Dec.   50.0  43.6   6.4   .299
 2     Mikk                     3912   May    66.1  63.9   2.2   .595
 5     Sunnook                  3986   Dec.   47.9  45.5   2.4   .320
48                                      Mean  54.7  50.2   4.5   .388

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 5     Kulhait river            3159   Jan.   65.8  57.3   8.5   .477
 9     Ratong river             3171   Jan.   69.9  56.6  13.3   .466
 3     Tambur river             3201   Nov.   72.9  63.2   9.7   .582
 2     Chingtam                 3404   Nov.   74.9  73.0   1.9   .302
 2     Tikbotang                3763   Dec.   68.0  61.8   6.2   .555
 7     Myong Valley             3782   Oct.   80.7  71.2   9.5   .755
 7     Iwa river                3783   Dec.   73.3  64.7   8.6   .611
 1     Ratong river             3790   Jan.   75.8  53.0  22.8   .414
 3     Tukcham                  3849   Nov.   83.7  76.8   6.9   .904
 1     Pacheem village          3855   Jan.   73.6  59.4  14.2   .513
 1     Yankoon                  3867   Dec.   69.1  63.8   5.3   .593
 2     Mikk                     3912   May    84.3  75.1   9.2   .856
 5     Sunnook                  3986   Dec.   69.4  61.1   8.3   .542
48                                      Mean  74.0  64.4   9.6   .621

Humidity          0.858          Calcutta   0.732
Weight of vapour  4.23 gr.          ,,      6.60 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 3     Yangyading               4111   Dec.   52.0  43.6   8.4   .300
 4     Gorh                     4128   May.   66.4  59.0   7.4   .506
 2     Namgah                   4229   Oct.   57.2  54.1   3.1   .429
 3     Taptiatok (Tambur)       4283   Nov.   51.3  45.8   5.5   .323
 7     Myong Valley             4345   Oct.   59.1  57.8   1.3   .487
 3     Jummanoo                 4362   Nov.   60.4  50.0  10.4   .374
 6     Nampok                   4377   Dec.   49.6  49.1   0.5   .362
 7     Chakoong                 4407   May    57.8  57.6   0.2   .483
10     Singtam                  4426   May    62.4  61.7   0.7   .553
 5     Namten                   4483   Dec.   44.7  44.3   0.4   .307
 5     Purmiokshong             4521   Nov.   60.5  56.5   4.0   .466
 2     Rungniok                 4565   Jan.   54.7  44.3  10.4   .307
16     Singtam                  4575   O.&N.  63.8  60.1   3.7   .525
 6     Cheadam                  4653   Dec.   51.4  46.6   4.8   .332
 4     Sablakoo                 4676   Dec.   50.0  44.9   5.2   .314
 4     Bheti                    4683   Nov.   59.0  52.3   6.7   .405
 2     Temi                     4771   May    59.8  50.1   9.7   .374
 4     Lingtam                  4805   May    60.4  56.6   3.8   .467
 7     Khersiong                4813   Jan.   51.0  45.2   5.8   .316
 6      Ditto                   4813   March  53.6  45.5   8.1   .320
 3     Tassiding                4840   Dec.   52.0  46.6   5.4   .333
 6     Lingcham                 4870   Dec.   48.5  46.1   2.4   .327
11     Dikkeeling               4952   Dec.   62.0  55.3   6.7   .447
 9     Tehonpong                4978   Jan.   49.4  34.7  14.7   .219
137                                     Mean  55.7  50.4   5.4   .387

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 3     Yangyading               4111   Dec.   71.1  67.2   3.9   .663
 4     Gorh                     4128   May.   85.5  74.2  11.3   .834
 2     Namgah                   4229   Oct.   80.8  73.7   7.1   .819
 3     Taptiatok (Tambur)       4283   Nov.   73.3  64.8   8.5   .614
 7     Myong Valley             4345   Oct.   81.7  72.9   8.8   .797
 3     Jummanoo                 4362   Nov.   77.4  70.2  17.2   .731
 6     Nampok                   4377   Dec.   64.1  56.3   7.8   .462
 7     Chakoong                 4407   May    83.9  76.2   7.7   .889
10     Singtam                  4426   May    88.6  79.0   9.6   .969
 5     Namten                   4483   Dec.   64.8  58.3   6.5   .495
 5     Purmiokshong             4521   Nov.   79.2  69.5   9.7   .715
 2     Rungniok                 4565   Jan.   66.5  59.7  16.8   .517
16     Singtam                  4575   O.&N.  82.5  76.7   5.8   .901
 6     Cheadam                  4653   Dec.   70.2  55.0  15.2   .442
 4     Sablakoo                 4676   Dec.   72.9  65.7   7.2   .632
 4     Bheti                    4683   Nov.   78.3  66.1  12.2   .639
 2     Temi                     4771   May    81.2  74.1   7.1   .834
 4     Lingtam                  4805   May    80.0  73.8   6.2   .820
 7     Khersiong                4813   Jan.   67.0  49.8  17.2   .370
 6      Ditto                   4813   March  77.1  70.5   6.6   .738
 3     Tassiding                4840   Dec.   79.7  60.8  18.9   .538
 6     Lingcham                 4870   Dec.   78.5  71.8   6.7   .771
11     Dikkeeling               4952   Dec.   80.8  62.0  18.8   .559
 9     Tehonpong                4978   Jan.   71.0  54.7  16.3   .439
137                                     Mean  76.5  66.8   9.7   .675

Humidity          0.837          Calcutta   0.730
Weight of vapour  4.33 gr.          ,,      7.12 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  4    Nampok                   5075   May    65.8  60.8   5.0   .537
  4    Tengling                 5257   Jan.   44.7  39.1   5.6   .257
  2    Choongtam, sunrise       5368   May    54.9  54.7   0.2   .438
  7        ,,     9.50 a.m.      ,,    May    71.5  58.9  12.6   .504
  5        ,,     noon           ,,    May    71.0  59.4  11.6   .513
  3        ,,     2.45 p.m.      ,,    May    66.4  59.4   7.0   .513
  4        ,,     4 p.m.         ,,    May    63.5  59.2   4.3   .510
  6        ,,     sunset         ,,    May    61.4  60.5   0.9   .532
  8        ,,     9.50 a.m.      ,,    Aug.   76.3  66.1  10.2   .640
  8        ,,     noon           ,,    Aug.   78.8  67.8  11.0   .677
  7        ,,     2.40 p.m.      ,,    Aug.   72.9  66.5   6.4   .649
  6        ,,     4 p.m.         ,,    Aug.   69.5  66.8   2.7   .655
  8        ,,     sunset         ,,    Aug.   66.9  65.4   1.5   .627
  5    Salloobong               5277   Nov.   57.6  51.2   6.4   .390
  6    Lingdam                  5375   Dec.   44.3  43.0   1.3   .293
  3    Makaroumbi               5485   Nov.   52.1  48.1   4.0   .350
  8    Khabang                  5505   Dec.   55.1  47.3   7.8   .340
  6    Lingdam                  5554   Dec.   45.0  43.7   1.3   .301
  3    Yankutang                5564   Dec.   43.6  41.7   1.9   .280
  4    Namtchi                  5608   May    67.1  61.2   5.9   .544
  6    Yoksun                   5619   Jan.   42.7  34.0   8.7   .214
 16     Ditto                    ,,    Jan.   43.0  33.9   9.1   .213
  2    Loongtoong               5677   Nov.   45.3  42.8   2.5   .292
  4    Sakkiazong               5625   Nov.   54.1  50.9   3.2   .358
  3    Phadong  8 a.m.          5946   Nov.   51.9  50.8   1.1   .383
  3       ,,    9.50 a.m.        ,,    Nov.   55.9  53.0   2.9   .413
  3       ,,    noon             ,,    Nov.   60.7  56.5   4.2   .465
  3       ,,    2.40 p.m.        ,,    Nov.   57.4  54.7   2.7   .438
  2       ,,    4 p.m.           ,,    Nov.   55.5  52.8   2.7   .410
  3       ,,    sunset           ,,    Nov.   53.7  52.6   1.1   .408
  3    Tumloong                 5368   Nov.   64.2  62.6   1.6   .570
 22       ,,    9.50 a.m.       5976)         54.1  50.0   4.1   .375
 21       ,,    noon             ,, )  Nov.   57.3  51.7   5.6   .396
 20       ,,    2.40 p.m.        ,, _  and    57.3  51.4   5.9   .391
 21       ,,    4 p.m.           ,, )  Dec.   54.7  50.5   4.2   .380
 21       ,,    sunset           ,, )         51.8  48.5   3.3   .355
260                                     Mean  57.7  53.3   4.5   .438

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  4    Nampok                   5075   May    83.1  74.7   8.4   .845
  4    Tengling                 5257   Jan.   65.4  38.1  27.3   .247
  2    Choongtam, sunrise       5368   May    78.2  73.9   4.3   .826
  7        ,,     9.50 a.m.      ,,    May    89.8  80.0  19.8  1.000
  5        ,,     noon           ,,    May    92.7  79.9  12.8   .999
  3        ,,     2.45 p.m.      ,,    May    95.4  78.7  16.7   .959
  4        ,,     4 p.m.         ,,    May    93.6  79.0  14.6   .971
  6        ,,     sunset         ,,    May    89.1  77.1  12.0   .915
  8        ,,     9.50 a.m.      ,,    Aug.   85.3  78.9  16.4   .967
  8        ,,     noon           ,,    Aug.   86.6  78.8  17.8   .965
  7        ,,     2.40 p.m.      ,,    Aug.   86.4  78.8   7.6   .963
  6        ,,     4 p.m.         ,,    Aug.   85.3  79.3   6.0   .980
  8        ,,     sunset         ,,    Aug.   83.6  78.5   5.1   .956
  5    Salloobong               5277   Nov.   79.4  65.8  13.6   .634
  6    Lingdam                  5375   Dec.   68.8  59.9   8.9   .521
  3    Makaroumbi               5485   Nov.   72.5  60.5  12.0   .532
  8    Khabang                  5505   Dec.   75.0  64.7  10.3   .611
  6    Lingdam                  5554   Dec.   71.0  56.5  14.5   .466
  3    Yankutang                5564   Dec.   69.5  63.1   6.4   .579
  4    Namtchi                  5608   May    87.8  74.9  12.8   .850
  6    Yoksun                   5619   Jan.   68.2  58.1  10.1   .492
 16     Ditto                    ,,    Jan.   66.2  51.9  14.3   .399
  2    Loongtoong               5677   Nov.   72.1  63.8   8.3   .595
  4    Sakkiazong               5625   Nov.   78.3  66.1  12.2   .639
  3    Phadong  8 a.m.          5946   Nov.   75.0  67.5   7.5   .670
  3       ,,    9.50 a.m.        ,,    Nov.   80.9  67.9  13.0   .678
  3       ,,    noon             ,,    Nov.   85.6  64.8  20.8   .613
  3       ,,    2.40 p.m.        ,,    Nov.   86.6  62.2  24.4   .562
  2       ,,    4 p.m.           ,,    Nov.   85.5  61.9  23.6   .557
  3       ,,    sunset           ,,    Nov.   80.6  67.4  13.2   .667
  3    Tumloong                 5368   Nov.   83.8  77.5   6.3   .924
 22       ,,    9.50 a.m.       5976)         75.1  61.9  13.2   .557
 21       ,,    noon             ,, )  Nov.   79.7  60.1  19.6   .524
 20       ,,    2.40 p.m.        ,, _  and    81.3  58.0  23.3   .489
 21       ,,    4 p.m.           ,, )  Dec.   80.2  58.6  21.6   .499
 21       ,,    sunset           ,, )         76.7  61.2  15.5   .545
260                                     Mean  77.6  67.8   9.8   .700

Humidity          0.865          Calcutta   0.730
Weight of vapour  4.70 gr.          ,,      7.34 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 5     Runkpo                   6008   Nov.   57.5  54.8   2.7   .440
11     Leebong                  6021   Feb.   47.8  43.7   4.1   .300
11      Ditto                    ,,    Jan.   47.8  43.4   4.4   .297
 4     Dholep                   6133   May    60.5  59.9   0.6   .520
 2     Iwa River                6159   Dec.   41.2  40.5   0.7   .269
 4     Dengha                   6368   Aug.   66.7  64.0   2.7   .597
 4     Kulhait River            6390   Dec.   41.9  41.9   0.0   .283
 3     Latong                   6391   Oct.   54.0  53.2   0.8   .416
 1     Doobdi                   6472   Jan.   46.6  36.2  10.4   .231
10     Pemiongchi               6584   Jan.   40.7  35.8   4.9   .228
 4     Keadom                   6609   Aug.   63.5  60.0   3.5   .523
 6     Hee-hill                 6677   Jan.   40.8  34.1   6.7   .215
 7     Dumpook                  6678   Jan.   40.2  31.8   8.4   .198
 4     Changachelling           6828   Jan.   50.6  31.8  18.8   .198
76                                      Mean  50.0  45.1   4.9   .337

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 5     Runkpo                   6008   Nov.   79.5  73.4   6.1   .810
11     Leebong                  6021   Feb.   74.9  59.7  15.2   .517
11      Ditto                    ,,    Jan.   66.9  56.2  10.7   .460
 4     Dholep                   6133   May    89.4  81.4   8.0   .046
 2     Iwa River                6159   Dec.   69.6  60.2   9.4   .527
 4     Dengha                   6368   Aug.   86.1  78.8   7.3   .962
 4     Kulhait River            6390   Dec.   71.3  60.9  10.4   .539
 3     Latong                   6391   Oct.   55.5  44.1  11.4   .305
 1     Doobdi                   6472   Jan.   78.7  58.0  20.7   .490
10     Pemiongchi               6584   Jan.   66.3  54.4  11.9   .434
 4     Keadom                   6609   Aug.   79.7  77.5   2.2   .925
 6     Hee-hill                 6677   Jan.   64.0  58.0   6.0   .489
 7     Dumpook                  6678   Jan.   68.5  53.8  14.7   .426
 4     Changachelling           6828   Jan.   68.3  53.6  14.8   .423
76                                      Mean  72.8  62.1  10.6   .597

Humidity          0.845          Calcutta   0.701
Weight of vapour  3.60 gr.          ,,      6.11 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Pemiongchi               7083   Jan.   46.2  33.5  12.7   .210
 2     Goong                    7216   Nov.   49.0  48.5   0.5   .355
 8     Kampo-Samdong            7329   May/   59.1  58.2   0.9   .493
 1     Hee-hill                 7289   Jan.   51.3  26.4  24.9   .163
 1     Ratong river             7143   Jan.   36.5  25.3  11.2   .157
 4     Source of Balasun        7436   Oct.   48.3  48.3   0.0   .352
 8     Goong ridge              7441   Oct.   51.2  50.2   1.0   .376
25                  Dorjiling           Mean  48.8  41.5   7.3   .301

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Pemiongchi               7083   Jan.   76.8  51.8  25.0   .396
 2     Goong                    7216   Nov.   79.7  69.1  10.6   .705
 8     Kampo-Samdong            7329   May/   83.6  77.4   6.2   .922
 1     Hee-hill                 7289   Jan.   72.8  56.6  16.2   .466
 1     Ratong river             7143   Jan.   60.0  52.9  17.1   .412
 4     Source of Balasun        7436   Oct.   81.2  73.7   7.5   .819
 8     Goong ridge              7441   Oct.   80.7  66.9  13.8   .657
25                  Dorjiling           Mean  76.4  64.1  12.3   .625

From mean of above and Dorjiling:
Humidity          0.826          Calcutta   0.668
Weight of vapour  3.85 gr.          ,,      7.28 gr.

                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  4    Sinchul                  8607   Jan.   41.7  34.3   7.4   .216
  2     Ditto                    ,,    April  66.8  44.6  22.2   .310
  1    Ascent of Tonglo         8148   May    56.2  54.4   1.8   .434
  2    Tambur river             8081   Nov.   38.0  33.9   4.1   .213
  3    Sakkiazong               8353   Nov.   49.7  37.4  12.3   .241
  4    Chateng                  8418   Oct.   43.8  43.2   0.6   .299
  6    Buckim                   8659   Jan.   30.2  22.8   7.4   .143
  9     Ditto                    ,,    Jan.   33.9  33.1   0.8   .207
  1    Chateng                  8752   May    67.2  60.7   6.5   .536
 11    Lachoong  7 a.m.         8777)         53.3  51.1   2.2   .388
 12       ,,     9.50 a.m.       ,, )         60.2  55.3   4.9   .447
  7       ,,     noon            ,, )  Aug.   61.6  57.1   4.5   .475
  4       ,,     2.40 p.m.       ,, _  and    58.1  56.4   1.7   .464
  7       ,,     4 p.m.          ,, )  Oct.   58.6  53.8   4.8   .424
 10       ,,     sunset          ,, )         55.5  54.3   1.2   .432
 12       ,,     Miscellaneous   ,, )         55.9  49.6   6.3   .368
 10    Lamteng   6 a.m.         8884)  May    53.9  52.0   1.9   .400
 10       ,,     9.50 a.m.       ,, )  June   62.8  56.2   6.6   .461
  4       ,,     noon            ,, _  July   62.8  56.2   6.6   .461
  5       ,,     2.40 p.m.       ,, )  and    58.3  54.5   3.9   .435
  6       ,,     4 p.m.          ,, )  Aug.   56.2  54.7   1.5   .438
  8       ,,     sunset          ,, )         53.3  52.5   0.8   .407
 11    Zemu Sundong  7 a.m.     8976)         55.7  55.3   0.4   .448
 11         ,,       9.50 a.m.   ,, )  June   59.7  52.8   6.9   .412
  7         ,,       noon        ,, )  and    63.1  57.1   6.0   .473
  6         ,,       2.40 p.m.   ,, _  July   61.0  58.6   2.4   .500
  8         ,,       sunset      ,, )         57.9  56.1   1.8   .459
 10         ,,       4 p.m.      ,, )         53.8  52.6   1.2   .407
  1    Goong                    8999   Nov.   49.0  48.5   0.5   .355
  1    Tendong (top)            8663   May    55.5  50.0   5.5   .373
193                                     Mean  54.5  50.0   4.5   .388

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  4    Sinchul                  8607   Jan.   66.3  56.9   9.4   .472
  2     Ditto                    ,,    April  96.9  75.4  21.5   .866
  1    Ascent of Tonglo         8148   May    86.8  78.9   7.9   .967
  2    Tambur river             8081   Nov.   71.7  64.1   7.6   .599
  3    Sakkiazong               8353   Nov.   74.0  62.4  11.6   .566
  4    Chateng                  8418   Oct.   79.2  77.5   1.7   .926
  6    Buckim                   8659   Jan.   68.6  49.4  19.2   .366
  9     Ditto                    ,,    Jan.   69.8  52.2  17.6   .403
  1    Chateng                  8752   May    89.7  76.8  12.9   .904
 11    Lachoong  7 a.m.         8777)         83.0  78.9   4.1   .967
 12       ,,     9.50 a.m.       ,, )         87.1  79.9   7.2   .999
  7       ,,     noon            ,, )  Aug.   90.1  79.4  10.7   .983
  4       ,,     2.40 p.m.       ,, _  and    88.0  80.0   8.0  1.007
  7       ,,     4 p.m.          ,, )  Oct.   87.5  79.4   8.1   .981
 10       ,,     sunset          ,, )         84.5  78.7   5.8   .959
 12       ,,     Miscellaneous   ,, )         85.9  75.2  10.7   .858
 10    Lamteng   6 a.m.         8884)  May    59.5  56.4   3.1   .464
 10       ,,     9.50 a.m.       ,, )  June   88.3  78.7   9.6   .959
  4       ,,     noon            ,, )  July   92.0  78.0  14.0   .939
  5       ,,     2.40 p.m.       ,, _  and    92.2  78.4  13.8   .950
  6       ,,     4 p.m.          ,, )  Aug.   92.3  77.1  15.2   .914
  8       ,,     sunset          ,, )         88.1  77.4  10.7   .922
 11    Zemu Sundong  7 a.m.     8976)         80.4  79.8   0.6   .997
 11         ,,       9.50 a.m.   ,, )  June   86.3  79.0   7.3   .969
  7         ,,       noon        ,, _  and    88.0  79.8   8.2   .994
  6         ,,       2.40 p.m.   ,, )  July   89.6  78.2  11.4   .944
  8         ,,       sunset      ,, )         89.3  79.0  10.3   .970
 10         ,,       4 p.m.      ,, )         82.7  77.3   5.4   .920
  1    Goong                    8999   Nov.   79.7  69.1  10.6   .705
  1    Tendong (top)            8663   May    88.6  78.1  10.5   .943
193                                     Mean  83.7  73.7   9.8   .847

Humidity          0.858          Calcutta   0.730
Weight of vapour  4.23 gr.          ,,      8.75 gr.

ELEVATION 9000 TO 10,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 4     Yangma Guola             9279   Nov.   37.8  33.1   4.7   .207
 8     Nanki                    9320   Nov.   42.3  38.2   4.0   .249
 4     Singalelah               9295   Dec.   36.2  35.7   0.5   .227
 1     Sakkiazong               9322   Nov.   53.5  33.3  20.2   .209
 1     Zemu river               9828   June   60.0  47.6  12.4   .343
18                                      Mean  46.0  37.6   8.4   .247

No. of
Obs.   Locality                 Elev.  Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 4     Yangma Guola             9279   Nov.   72.7  61.4  11.3   .549
 8     Nanki                    9320   Nov.   52.2  48.3   3.9   .352
 4     Singalelah               9295   Dec.   70.9  62.1   8.8   .560
 1     Sakkiazong               9322   Nov.   80.0  57.3  22.7   .478
 1     Zemu river               9828   June   93.3  81.9  11.4  1.062
18                                      Mean  73.8  62.2  11.6   .600

Humidity          0.860          Calcutta   0.760
Weight of vapour  3.46 gr.          ,,      9.00 gr.

ELEVATION 10,000 TO 11,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 13    Tonglo                  10,008  May    51.5  50.2   1.3   .376
  3    Nanki                   10,024  Nov.   42.8  35.5   7.3   .225
  4    Yalloong river          10,058  Dec.   37.7  29.6   8.1   .183
  2    Tonglo top              10,079  May    49.9  47.9   2.0   .348
  2    Yeunga                  10,196  Oct.   45.9  44.7   1.2   .311
  4    Zemu river              10,247  June   45.4  44.2   1.2   .306
 10    Wallanchoon             10,348  Nov.   37.9  30.2   7.7   .187
  4    Laghep                  10,423  Nov.   46.0  42.4   3.6   .287
  3     Ditto                    ,,    Nov.   37.6  37.0   0.6   .238
 16    Thlonok river 7 a.m.    10,846  June   48.5  47.2   1.3   .339
 17         ,,       9.50 a.m.   ,,    June   57.6  51.4   6.2   .392
  9         ,,       noon        ,,    June   56.1  50.6   5.5   .382
  8         ,,       2.40 p.m.   ,,    June   54.8  50.6   4.2   .381
  9         ,,       4 p.m.      ,,    June   53.4  50.6   2.8   .381
 15         ,,       sunset      ,,    June   49.8  48.9   0.9   .359
  4    Yangma Valley           10,999  Dec.   31.6  24.3   7.3   .149
123                                     Mean  46.7  42.8   3.8   .303

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 13    Tonglo                  10,008  May    88.8  80.8   8.0  1.030
  3    Nanki                   10,024  Nov.   79.5  65.8  13.7   .633
  4    Yalloong river          10,058  Dec.   77.7  62.1  15.6   .560
  2    Tonglo top              10,079  May    89.4  80.5   8.9  1.018
  2    Yeunga                  10,196  Oct.   79.5  77.1   2.4   .915
  4    Zemu river              10,247  June   84.6  75.1   9.5   .856
 10    Wallanchoon             10,348  Nov.   76.5  61.9  14.6   .558
  4    Laghep                  10,423  Nov.   80.9  68.0  12.9   .681
  3     Ditto                    ,,    Nov.   75.3  69.4   5.9   .712
 16    Thlonok river 7 a.m.    10,846  June   79.0  75.1   3.9   .856
 17         ,,       9.50 a.m.   ,,    June   87.4  78.8   8.6   .965
  9         ,,       noon        ,,    June   90.0  79.3  10.7   .979
  8         ,,       2.40 p.m.   ,,    June   88.5  79.7   8.8   .991
  9         ,,       4 p.m.      ,,    June   88.7  78.7  10.0   .962
 15         ,,       sunset      ,,    June   85.5  78.0   7.5   .938
  4    Yangma Valley           10,999  Dec.   74.4  61.9  12.3   .558
123                                     Mean  82.8  73.3   9.5   .826

Humidity          0.878          Calcutta   0.740
Weight of vapour  3.35 gr.          ,,      8.70 gr.

ELEVATION 11,000 TO 12,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  3    Barfonchen              11,233  Nov.   36.8  31.9   4.9   .198
  3    Punying                 11,299  Aug.   50.2  49.5   0.7   .367
  1    Kambachen village       11,378  Dec.   43.3  32.5  10.8   .203
 12    Tallum  7 a.m.          11,482  July   50.4  47.8   2.6   .347
  6      ,,    9.50 a.m.         ,,    July   58.1  50.5   7.6   .380
  8      ,,    noon              ,,    July   57.9  50.8   7.1   .384
  5      ,,    2.40 p.m.         ,,    July   55.7  50.2   5.5   .377
  6      ,,    4 p.m.            ,,    July   54.3  50.1   4.2   .375
  6      ,,    sunset            ,,    July   48.8  47.3   1.5   .340
  2    Kambachen valley        11,484  Dec.   30.4  26.0   4.4   .161
 10    Yeumtong  7 a.m.        11,887)        44.4  43.8   0.6   .302
  9       ,,     9.50 a.m.       ,,  ) Aug.   53.6  48.9   4.7   .360
  5       ,,     noon            ,,  ) Sep.   54.5  48.3   6.2   .353
  7       ,,     2.40 p.m.       ,,  _ and    48.8  47.4   1.4   .342
  4       ,,     4 p.m.          ,,  ) Oct.   48.4  47.1   1.3   .338
 10       ,,     sunset          ,,  )        42.0  35.9   6.1   .229
  7       ,,     Miscellaneous   ,,    Oct.   43.5  37.1   6.4   .239
104                                     Mean  48.3  43.8   4.5   .311

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  3    Barfonchen              11,233  Nov.   76.3  69.6   6.7   .719
  3    Punying                 11,299  Aug.   84.5  78.8   5.7   .963
  1    Kambachen village       11,378  Dec.   80.0  61.2  18.8   .544
 12    Tallum  7 a.m.          11,482  July   85.0  80.3   4.7  1.010
  6      ,,    9.50 a.m.         ,,    July   88.1  79.7   8.4   .993
  8      ,,    noon              ,,    July   89.7  81.3   8.4  1.043
  5      ,,    2.40 p.m.         ,,    July   89.3  80.6   8.7  1.020
  6      ,,    4 p.m.            ,,    July   90.3  79.4  10.9   .981
  6      ,,    sunset            ,,    July   86.6  80.0   6.6  1.001
  2    Kambachen valley        11,484  Dec.   69.9  59.5  10.4   .515
 10    Yeumtong  7 a.m.        11,887)        83.0  78.9   4.1   .967
  9       ,,     9.50 a.m.       ,,  ) Aug.   87.5  78.7   8.8   .959
  5       ,,     noon            ,,  ) Sep.   89.7  77.2  12.5   .917
  7       ,,     2.40 p.m.       ,,  _ and    87.2  77.2  10.0   .915
  4       ,,     4 p.m.          ,,  ) Oct.   85.2  77.8   7.4   .934
 10       ,,     sunset          ,,  )        60.6  58.5   2.1   .497
  7       ,,     Miscellaneous   ,,    Oct.   83.7  69.7  14.0   .720
104                                     Mean  83.3  74.6   8.7   .865

Humidity          0.860          Calcutta   0.760
Weight of vapour  3.46 gr.          ,,      9.00 gr.

ELEVATION 12,000 TO 13,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  9    Zemu river  7 a.m.      12,070)        46.6  45.6   1.0   .321
  9        ,,      9.50 a.m.     ,,  ) June   51.1  49.0   2.1   .362
  7        ,,      noon          ,,  _ and    51.1  50.2   0.9   .376
  7        ,,      2.40 p.m.     ,,  ) July   51.2  50.3   0.9   .377
  7        ,,      4 p.m.        ,,  )        49.7  48.9   0.8   .360
  8        ,,      sunset        ,,  )        48.1  47.6   0.5   .344
  2    Yangma Valley           12,129  Nov.   34.8  22.7  12.1   .143
  1    Zemu river              12,422  June   49.0  46.6   2.4   .332
  3    Chumanako               12,590  Nov.   37.3  28.3   9.0   .174
  7    Tungu  7 a.m.           12,751  July   45.1  44.1   1.0   .305
  5      ,,   9.50 a.m.          ,,    July   53.1  48.6   4.5   .355
  1      ,,   noon               ,,    July   62.3  52.7   9.6   .409
  1      ,,   2.40 p.m.          ,,    July   60.0  53.8   6.2   .425
  6      ,,   sunset             ,,    July   46.4  45.3   1.1   .317
  3      ,,   sunrise            ,,    Oct.   38.2  35.0   3.2   .222
  4      ,,   9.50 a.m.          ,,    Oct.   46.5  42.8   3.7   .292
  4      ,,   noon               ,,    Oct.   46.1  42.0   4.1   .284
  4      ,,   2.40 p.m.          ,,    Oct.   43.8  42.1   1.7   .285
  4      ,,   4 p.m.             ,,    Oct.   42.3  40.8   1.5   .271
  6      ,,   sunset             ,,    Oct.   41.0  38.7   2.3   .253
 23      ,,   Miscellaneous      ,,    Oct.   43.2  40.8   2.4   .272
 13      ,,    Ditto             ,,    July   51.3  47.4   3.6   .345
  6    Tuquoroma               12,944  Nov.   26.0  23.4   2.6   .146
140                                     Mean  46.3  42.9   3.4   .303

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
  9    Zemu river  7 a.m.      12,070)        80.6  77.7   2.9   .931
  9        ,,      9.50 a.m.     ,,  ) June   84.5  75.1   9.4   .972
  7        ,,      noon          ,,  _ and    87.0  82.2   4.8  1.074
  7        ,,      2.40 p.m.     ,,  ) July   86.3  80.0   6.3  1.000
  7        ,,      4 p.m.        ,,  )        86.5  80.2   6.3  1.006
  8        ,,      sunset        ,,  )        81.4  77.5   3.9   .926
  2    Yangma Valley           12,129  Nov.   70.6  63.7  16.9   .592
  1    Zemu river              12,422  June   93.2  79.6  13.6   .989
  3    Chumanako               12,590  Nov.   75.1  73.8   1.3   .822
  7    Tungu  7 a.m.           12,751  July   80.5  78.3   2.2   .949
  5      ,,   9.50 a.m.          ,,    July   87.1  79.4   7.7   .982
  1      ,,   noon               ,,    July   88.9  77.8  11.1   .935
  1      ,,   2.40 p.m.          ,,    July   85.3  79.5   5.8   .985
  6      ,,   sunset             ,,    July   84.7  79.1   5.6   .974
  3      ,,   sunrise            ,,    Oct.   79.4  77.8   1.6   .932
  4      ,,   9.50 a.m.          ,,    Oct.   85.0  78.6   6.4   .957
  4      ,,   noon               ,,    Oct.   85.0  78.2   6.8   .944
  4      ,,   2.40 p.m.          ,,    Oct.   86.4  78.8   7.6   .963
  4      ,,   4 p.m.             ,,    Oct.   85.9  78.5   7.4   .956
  6      ,,   sunset             ,,    Oct.   83.3  78.2   5.1   .947
 23      ,,   Miscellaneous      ,,    Oct.   84.5  78.4   6.1   .950
 13      ,,    Ditto             ,,    July   85.7  79.0   6.7   .971
  6    Tuquoroma               12,944  Nov.   75.1  60.8  14.3   .537
140                                     Mean  83.6  77.1   6.5   .926

Humidity          0.890          Calcutta   0.815
Weight of vapour  3.37 gr.          ,,      9.75 gr.

ELEVATION 13,000 TO 14,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 7     Mon Lepcha              13,090  Jan.   27.1  18.5   8.6   .122
 4      Ditto                  13,073  Jan.   25.6  16.4   9.2   .113
 2     Tunkra valley           13,111  Aug.   45.0  43.5   1.5   .298
21     Jongri                  13,194  Jan.   22.7  10.5  12.2   .091
 1     Zemu river              13,281  June   46.7  46.7   0.0   .334
 4     Choonjerma              13,288  Dec.   39.0  11.1  27.9   .093
10     Yangma village          13,502  Nov./  33.8  18.6  15.2   .123
 1     Wallanchoon road        13,505  Nov.   28.0   9.5  18.5   .088
 3     Kambachen, below pass   13,600  Dec.   40.0  18.6  21.4   .123
53                                      Mean  34.2  21.5  12.6   .154

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 7     Mon Lepcha              13,090  Jan.   70.0  50.8  19.2   .527
 4      Ditto                  13,073  Jan.   71.7  49.9  21.8   .373
 2     Tunkra valley           13,111  Aug.   81.2  78.7   2.5   .962
21     Jongri                  13,194  Jan.   70.6  53.2  17.4   .417
 1     Zemu river              13,281  June   92.9  86.6   6.2  1.230
 4     Choonjerma              13,288  Dec.   69.8  61.8  28.0   .555
10     Yangma village          13,502  Nov./  78.9  62.1  16.8   .561
 1     Wallanchoon road        13,505  Nov.   66.4  61.8  14.6   .555
 3     Kambachen, below pass   13,600  Dec.   72.9  62.2  10.7   .563
53                                      Mean  74.9  63.0  11.9   .636

Humidity          0.634          Calcutta   0.678
Weight of vapour  1.61 gr.                  6.28 gr.

ELEVATION 15,000 TO 16,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Yangma valley           15,186  Dec.   42.2  20.7  21.5   .133
 1     Choonjerma pass         15,259  Dec.   34.3  10.5  23.8   .091
 8     Lachee-pia              15,262  Aug.   42.0  41.6   0.4   .279
12     Momay,  7 a.m.            ,,    Sept.  39.4  34.7   4.7   .219
 6       ,,    9.50 a.m.         ,,    Sept.  50.9  41.7   9.2   .280
 4       ,,    noon              ,,    Sept.  51.7  43.6   8.1   .299
 8       ,,    2.40 p.m.         ,,    Sept.  49.7  41.9   7.8   .283
10       ,,    4 p.m.            ,,    Sept.  44.4  41.3   3.1   .276
16       ,,    sunset            ,,    Sept.  41.5  38.6   2.9   .252
 8       ,,    Miscellaneous     ,,    Sept.  47.6  41.4   6.2   .277
 6       ,,         ,,           ,,    Oct.   40.9  36.5   4.4   .234
 3     Sittong                 15,372  Oct.   38.6  29.8   8.8   .184
 2     Palung                  15,676  Oct.   44.6  39.8   4.8   .262
 1     Kambachen pass          15,770  Dec.   26.5  15.9  10.6   .111
 1     Yeumtong                15,985  Sept.  44.6  43.7   0.9   .300
87                                      Mean  42.6  34.8   7.8   .232

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Yangma valley           15,186  Dec.   80.8  62.0  18.8   .559
 1     Choonjerma pass         15,259  Dec.   77.9  60.6  17.3   .534
 8     Lachee-pia              15,262  Aug.   85.5  79.4   6.1   .982
12     Momay,  7 a.m.            ,,    Sept.  80.5  78.8   1.7   .966
 6       ,,    9.50 a.m.         ,,    Sept.  87.6  78.8   8.8   .963
 4       ,,    noon              ,,    Sept.  89.5  79.7   9.8   .990
 8       ,,    2.40 p.m.         ,,    Sept.  90.0  78.3  11.7   .949
10       ,,    4 p.m.            ,,    Sept.  88.7  77.6  11.1   .928
16       ,,    sunset            ,,    Sept.  84.2  78.4   5.8   .952
 8       ,,    Miscellaneous     ,,    Sept.  87.4  78.6   8.8   .956
 6       ,,         ,,           ,,    Oct.   83.9  69.3  14.6   .710
 3     Sittong                 15,372  Oct.   84.0  77.5   6.5   .926
 2     Palung                  15,676  Oct.   86.8  78.5   8.3   .954
 1     Kambachen pass          15,770  Dec.   78.0  58.5  19.5   .498
 1     Yeumtong                15,985  Sept.  88.8  80.5   8.3  1.016
87                                      Mean  84.9  74.4  10.5   .859

Humidity          0.763          Calcutta   0.719
Weight of vapour  2.55 gr.                  8.95 gr.

ELEVATION 16,000 TO 17,000 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Kanglachem pass        16,038  Dec.   32.8  16.3  16.5   .110
 3     Tunkra pass             16,038  Aug.   39.8  38.7   1.1   .252
 1     Wallanchoon pass        16,756  Nov.   18.0  -6.0  24.0   .046
 5     Teumtso                 16,808  Oct.   32.4  25.1   7.3   .156
 6     Cholamoo lake           16,900  Oct.   31.4  20.2  11.2   .130
 1     Donkia mountain         16,978  Sept.  40.2  25.9  14.3   .160
17                                      Mean  32.4  20.0  12.4   .142

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Kanglachem pass         16,038  Dec.   80.7  61.1  19.6   .543
 3     Tunkra pass             16,038  Aug.   86.0  78.7   7.3   .959
 1     Wallanchoon pass        16,756  Nov.   79.9  57.6  22.3   .483
 5     Teumtso                 16,808  Oct.   85.0  75.7   9.3   .872
 6     Cholamoo lake           16,900  Oct.   79.8  68.4  11.4   .690
 1     Donkia mountain         16,978  Sept.  87.6  78.8  18.8   .963
17                                      Mean  83.2  70.1  13.3   .752

Humidity          0.640          Calcutta   0.658
Weight of vapour  1.53 gr.                  7.80 gr.

ELEVATION 17,000 TO 18,500 FEET.
                                EASTERN NEPAL AND SIKKIM.
No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Kinchinjhow             17,624  Sept.  47.5  30.9  16.6   .191
 1     Sebolah pass            17,585  Sept.  46.5  34.6  11.9   .218
 1     Donkin mountain         18,307  Sept.  38.8  35.3   3.5   .224
 3     Bhomtso                 18,450  Oct.   54.0   4.4  49.6   .072
 2     Donkia pass             18,466  Sept.  41.8  30.3  11.5   .188
 2      Ditto                  18,466  Oct.   40.1  25.0  15.1   .155
10                                      Mean  44.8  26.8  18.0   .175

No. of
Obs.   Locality                Elev.   Month  Tem.  D.P.  Diff.  Tens
 1     Kinchinjhow             17,624  Sept.  85.7  79.7  16.0   .991
 1     Sebolah pass            17,585  Sept.  88.8  80.0  18.8  1.002
 1     Donkin mountain         18,307  Sept.  90.7  79.3  11.4   .981
 3     Bhomtso                 18,450  Oct.   91.1  61.1  20.0   .543
 2     Donkia pass             18,466  Sept.  84.1  78.4  15.7   .950
 2      Ditto                  18,466  Oct.   86.5  65.5  21.0   .627
10                                      Mean  87.8  74.0  12.2   .849

Humidity          0.532          Calcutta   0.648
Weight of vapour  1.90 gr.                  8.78 gr.


HUMIDITY                                            WEIGHT OF VAPOUR
No. of  Elevations      Sta-   Sik-  Cal-   Diff.   Sik-  Cal-  Diff.
Obs.    in Feet         tions  kim   cutta  Sikkim  kim   cutta Sikkim
  48      735 to   2000   9    .717  .663   +.054   5.57  6.88  -1.31
  49     2000 to   3000   9    .820  .740    .080   5.45  7.13   1.68
  48     3000 to   4000  13    .858  .732    .116   4.23  6.60   2.37
 137     4000 to   5000  23    .837  .730    .107   4.33  7.12   2.79
 260     5000 to   6000  15    .865  .730    .135   4.70  7.34   2.64
  76     6000 to   7000  13    .845  .701    .144   3.60  6.71   3.11
1023     7000 to   8000  14    .826  .668    .158   3.85  7.28   3.43
 193     8000 to   9000  13    .858  .730    .128   4.23  8.75   4.52
  18     9000 to 10,000   5    .747  .724    .023   2.80  6.28   3.48
 123   10,000 to 11,000  10    .878  .740    .138   3.35  8.70   4.35
 104   11,000 to 12,000   6    .860  .760    .100   3.46  9.00   5.54
 140   12,000 to 13,000   6    .890  .815    .075   3.37  9.75   6.38
  53   13,000 to 14,000   9    .634  .678   -.044   1.61  6.28   4.67
  87   15,000 to 16,000   8    .763  .719   +.044   2.55  8.95   6.40
  17   16,000 to 17,000   6    .640  .658    .018   1.53  7.80   6.27
  10   17,000 to 18,500   5    .532  .648   -.116   1.90  8.78   6.88
2386                    154

Considering how desultory the observations in Sikkim are, and how
much affected by local circumstances, the above results must be
considered highly satisfactory: they prove that the relative humidity
of the atmospheric column remains pretty constant throughout all
elevations, except when these are in a Tibetan climate; and when
above 18,000 feet, elevations which I attained in fine weather only.
Up to 12,000 feet this constant humidity is very marked; the
observations made at greater elevations were almost invariably to the
north, or leeward of the great snowy peaks, and consequently in a
drier climate; and there it will be seen that these proportions are
occasionally inverted; and in Tibet itself a degree of relative
dryness is encountered, such as is never equalled on the plains of
Eastern Bengal or the Gangetic delta. Whether an isolated peak rising
near Calcutta, to the elevation of 19,OOQ feet, would present similar
results to the above, is not proven by these observations, but as the
relative humidity is the same at all elevations on the outermost
ranges of Sikkim, which attain 10,000 feet, and as these rise from
the plains like steep islands out of the ocean, it may be presumed
that the effects of elevation would be the same in both cases.

The first effect of this humid wind is to clothe Sikkim with forests,
that make it moister still; and however difficult it is to separate
cause from effect in such cases as those of the reciprocal action of
humidity on vegetation, and vegetation on humidity, it is necessary
for the observer to consider the one as the effect of the other.
There is no doubt that but for the humidity of the region, the Sikkim
Himalaya would not present the uniform clothing of forest that it
does; and, on the other hand, that but for this vegetation, the
relative humidity would not be so great.* [Balloon ascents and
observations on small mountainous islands, therefore, offer the best
means of solving such questions: of these, the results of ballooning,
under Mr. Welsh's intrepid and skilful pioneering (see Phil. Trans.
for 1853), have proved most satisfactory; though, from the time for
observation being short, and from the interference of belts of
vapour, some anomalies have not been eliminated. Islands again are
still more exposed to local influences, which may be easily
eliminated in a long series of observations. I think that were two
islands, as different in their physical characters as St. Helena and
Ascension, selected for comparative observations, at various
elevations, the laws that regulate the distribution of humidity in
the upper regions might be deduced without difficulty. They are
advantageous sites, from differing remarkably in their humidity.
Owing partly to the indestructible nature of its component rock (a
glassy basalt), the lower parts of Ascension have never yielded to
the corroding effects of the moist sea air which surrounds it; which
has decomposed the upper part into a deep bed of clay. Hence
Ascension does not support a native tree, or even shrub, two feet
high. St. Helena, on the other hand, which can hardly be considered
more favourably situated for humidity, was clothed with a redundant
vegetation when discovered, and trees and tree-ferns (types of
humidity) still spread over its loftiest summits. Here the humidity,
vegetation, and mineral and mechanical composition reciprocate their

The great amount of relative humidity registered at 6000 to 8000
feet, arises from most of the observations having been made on the
outer range, where the atmosphere is surcharged. The majority of
those at 10,000 to 12,000 feet, which also give a disproportionate
amount of humidity, were registered at the Zemu and Thlonok rivers,
where the narrowness of the valleys, the proximity of great snowy
peaks, and the rank luxuriance of the vegetation, all favour a
humid atmosphere.

I would have added the relative rain-fall to the above, but this is
so very local a phenomenon, and my observations were so repeatedly
deranged by having to camp in forests, and by local obstacles of all
kinds, that I have suppressed them; their general results I have
given in Appendix F.

I here add a few observations, taken on the plains at the foot of the
Sikkim Himalaya during the spring months.

_Comparison between Temperature and Humidity of the Sikkim Terai
and Calcutta, in March and April, 1849._

No.              above TEMP.       D.P.        TENSION     SAT.
of               sea.
Obs. Locality    Feet  C.    T.    C.    T.    C.    T.    C.    T.
 4   Rummai      293   82.2  70.6  61.7  60.5  .553  .532  .517  .717
 4   Belakoba    368   92.8  85.5  62.6  63.0  .570  .578  .382  .485
 3   Rangamally  275   84.2  75.0  68.7  62.5  .695  .568  .605  .665
 3   Bhojepore   404   90.1  81.2  54.1  44.3  .429  .308  .313  .295
 4   Thakyagunj  284   84.9  77.1  61.3  60.8  .547  .537  .466  .588
 3   Bhatgong    225   87.4  74.9  64.7  54.6  .611  .436  .480  .512
 2   Sahigunj    231   80.2  68.0  66.2  53.1  .642  .414  .635  .409
 8   Titalya     362   85.5  80.0  55.4  56.1  .448  .459  .376  .459
31      Means    305   85.9  79.0  61.8  56.9  .562  .479  .472  .516
     May, 1850 ) 131   89.7 K78.6  76.7 K71.4  .904 K.759  .665 K.793
Vapour in a cubic foot--Kishengunj 8.20   Terai    5.08
                        Calcutta   9.52   Calcutta 5.90
Mean difference of temperature between Terai and Calcutta, from
  31 observations in March, as above,
  excluding minima                            Terai--6.9
Mean difference from 26 observations in March,
  including minima                            Terai--9.7
Mean difference of temperature at Siligore on May 1, 1850--   10.9
Mean difference of temperature at Kishengunj on May 1, 1850-- 11.1

From the above, it appears that during the spring months, and before
the rains commence, the belt of sandy and grassy land along the
Himalaya, though only 3.5 degrees north of Calcutta, is at least 6
degrees or 7 degrees colder, and always more humid relatively, though
there is absolutely less moisture suspended in the air. After the
rains commence; I believe that this is in a great measure inverted,
the plains becoming excessively heated, and the temperature being
higher than at Calcutta. This indeed follows from the well known fact
that the summer heat increases greatly in advancing north-west from
the Bay of Bengal to the trans-Sutledge regions; it is admirably
expressed in the maps of Dove's great work "On the Distribution of
Heat on the Surface of the Globe."



These observations were taken by burying a brass tube two feet six
inches to three feet deep, in exposed soil, and sinking in it, by a
string or tied to a slip of wood, a thermometer whose bulb was well
padded with wool: this, after a few hours' rest, indicates the
temperature of the soil. Such a tube and thermometer I usually caused
to be sunk wherever I halted, if even for one night, except during
the height of the rains, which are so heavy that they communicate to
the earth a temperature considerably above that of the air.

The results proved that the temperature of the soil at Dorjiling
varies with that of the month, from 46 degrees to 62.2 degrees, but
is hardly affected by the diurnal variation, except in extreme cases.
In summer, throughout the rains, May to October, the temperature is
that of the month, which is imparted by the rain to the depth of
eleven feet during heavy continued falls (of six to twelve inches a
day), on which occasions I have seen the buried thermometer
indicating a temperature above the mean of the month. Again, in the
winter months, December and January, it stands 5 degrees above the
monthly mean; in November and February 4 degrees to 5 degrees; in
March a few degrees below the mean temperature of the month, and in
October above it; April and May being sunny, it stands above their
mean; June to September a little below the mean temperature of
each respectively.

The temperature of the soil is affected by:--1. The exposure of the
surface; 2. The nature of the soil; 3. Its permeability by rain, and
the presence of underground springs; 4. The sun's declination;
5. The elevation above the sea, and consequently the heating power of
the sun's rays: and 6, The amount of cloud and sunshine.

The appended observations, though taken at sixty-seven places, are
far from being sufficient to supply data for the exact estimation of
the effects of the sun on the soil at any elevation or locality;
they, however, indicate with tolerable certainty the main features of
this phenomenon, and these are in entire conformity with more ample
series obtained elsewhere. The result, which at first sight appears
the most anomalous, is, that the mean temperature of the soil, at two
or three feet depth, is almost throughout the year in India above
that of the surrounding atmosphere. This has been also ascertained to
be the case in England by several observers, and the carefully
conducted observations of Mr. Robert Thompson at the Horticultural
Society's Gardens at Chiswick, show that the temperature of the soil
at that place is, on the mean of six years, at the depth of one foot,
1 degree above that of the air, and at two feet 1.5 degrees. During
the winter months the soil is considerably (l degree to 3 degrees)
warmer than the air, and during summer the soil is a fraction of a
degree cooler than the air.

In India, the sun's declination being greater, these effects are much
exaggerated, the soil on the plains being in winter sometimes 9
degrees hotter than the air; and at considerable elevations in the
Himalaya very much more than that; in summer also, the temperature of
the soil seldom falls below that of the air, except where copious
rain-falls communicate a low temperature, or where forests interfere
with the sun's rays.

At considerable elevations these effects are so greatly increased,
that it is extremely probable that at certain localities the mean
temperature of the soil may be even 10 degrees warmer than that of
the air; thus, at Jongri, elevation 13,194 feet, the soil in January
was 34.5 degrees, or 19.2 degrees above the mean temperature of the
month, immediately before the ground became covered with snow for the
remainder of the winter; during the three succeeding months,
therefore, the temperature of the soil probably does not fall below
that of the snow, whilst the mean temperature of the air in January
may be estimated at about 20 degrees, February 22 degrees, March 30
degrees, and April 35 degrees. If, again, we assume the temperature
of the soil of Jongri to be that of other Sikkim localities between
10,000 and 14,000 feet, we may assume the soil to be warmer by 10
degrees in July (see Tungu observations), by 8 degrees or 9 degrees
in September (see Yeumtong); by l0 degrees in October (see Tungu);
and by 7 degrees to l0 degrees in November (see Wallanchoon and
Nanki). These temperatures, however, vary extremely according to
exposure and amount of sunshine; and I should expect that the
greatest differences would be found in the sunny climate of Tibet,
where the sun's heat is most powerful. Were nocturnal or terrestrial
radiation as constant and powerful as solar, the effects of the
latter would be neutralised; but such is not the case at any
elevation in Sikkim.

This accumulated heat in the upper strata of soil must have a very
powerful effect upon vegetation, preventing the delicate rootlets of
shrubs from becoming frozen, and preserving vitality in the more
fleshy, roots, such as those of the large rhubarbs and small orchids,
whose spongy cellular tissues would no doubt be ruptured by severe
frosts. To the burrowing rodents, the hares, marmots, and rats, which
abound at 15,000 to 17,000 feet in Tibet, this phenomenon is even
more conspicuously important; for were the soil in winter to acquire
the mean temperature of the air, it would take very long to heat
after the melting of the snow, and indeed the latter phenomenon would
be greatly retarded. The rapid development of vegetation after the
disappearance of the snow, is no doubt also proximately due to the
heat of the soil, quite as much as to the increased strength of the
sun's direct rays in lofty regions.

I have given in the column following that containing the temperature
of the sunk thermometer, first the extreme temperatures of the air
recorded during the time the instrument was sunk; and in the next
following, the mean temperature of the air during the same period, so
far as I could ascertain it from my own observations.

SERIES I.--_Soane Valley_
Locality                               Muddunpore
Date                                   Feb. 11 to 12
Elevation                              440 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 4 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   71.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    62.0 to 77.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  67.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +4.5
Locality                               Nourunga
Date                                   Feb. 12 to 13
Elevation                              340 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 8 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   71.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    57.0 to 71.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  67.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      3.4
Locality                               Baroon
Date                                   Feb. 13 to 14
Elevation                              345 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 4 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   68.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    53.5 to 76.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  67.6
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      1.9
Locality                               Tilotho
Date                                   Feb. 15 to 16
Elevation                              395 feet
Depth                                  4 ft. 6 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   76.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    58.5 to 80.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  67.8
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      8.7
Locality                               Akbarpore
Date                                   Feb. 17 to 19
Elevation                              400 feet
Depth                     (2 therm.)   4 ft. 6 in.
                                       5 ft. 6 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   76.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    56.9 to 79.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  68.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      8.0

SERIES II.--_Himalaya of East Nepal and Sikkim._
Locality                               Base of Tonglo
Date                                   May 19
Elevation                              3,000 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   78.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    67.5 to 67.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.
Locality                               Simsibong
Date                                   May 20
Elevation                              7,000 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   61.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    59.0 to 59.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.
Locality                               Tonglo saddle
Date                                   May 21 to 22
Elevation                              10,008 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 6 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   50.7*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    47.5 to 57.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  52.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -1.8
Locality                               Tonglo summit
Date                                   May 23
Elevation                              10,079 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 6 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   49.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    47.5 to 53.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  52.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -1.8
Locality                               Simonbong
Date                                   May 24
Elevation                              5,000 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 6 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   69.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    51.2 to 55.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  52.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -1.8
Locality                               Nanki
Date                                   Nov. 4 to 5
Elevation                              9,300 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   51.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    33.0 to 50.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  41.2
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +9.7
Locality                               Sakkiazong
Date                                   Nov. 9 to 10
Elevation                              8,353 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   53.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    37.8 to 55.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  46.1
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +7.1
Locality                               Mywa guola
Date                                   Nov. 17 to 18
Elevation                              2,132 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   73.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    41.0 to 85.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  63.4
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +9.6
Locality                               Banks of Tambur
Date                                   Nov. 18 to 19
Elevation                              2,545 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   71.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    48.0 to 65.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  55.6
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +15.4
Locality                               Banks of Tambur
                                        higher up river
Date                                   Nov. 19 to 20
Elevation                              3,201 feet
Depth                                  3 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   64.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    44.3 to 60.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  51.6
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +12.9
Locality                               Wallanchoon
Date                                   Nov. 23 to 25
Elevation                              10,386 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   43.5 to 45.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    25.0 to 49.7
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  37.4
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +7.6
Locality                               Yangma village
Date                                   Nov. 30, Dec. 3
Elevation                              13,502 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   37.3 to 38.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    20.0 to 46.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  33.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +4.7
Locality                               Yangma river
Date                                   Dec. 2 to 3
Elevation                              10,999 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   41.4 to 42.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    23.0 to 40.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  27.9
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.6
Locality                               Bhomsong
Date                                   Dec. 24 to 25
Elevation                              1,596 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   64.5 to 65.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    42.8 to 71.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  57.1
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +6.6
Locality                               Tchonpong
Date                                   Jan. 4
Elevation                              4,978 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   55.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    33.0 to 54.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  43.9
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +11.1
Locality                               Jongri
Date                                   Jan. 10 to 11
Elevation                              13,194 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   34.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    3.7 to 34.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  15.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +19.2
Locality                               Buckeem
Date                                   Jan. 12
Elevation                              8,665 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   43.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    40.0 to 29.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  32.4
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +10.8
Locality                               Choongtam
Date                                   May 19 to 25
Elevation                              5,268 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   62.5 to 62.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    48.0 to 78.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  63.2
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -0.6
Locality                               Junction of Thlonok and Zemu
Date                                   June 13 to 16
Elevation                              10,846 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   51.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    38.2 to 57.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  49.8
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.4
Locality                               Tungu
Date                                   July 26 to 30
Elevation                              12,751 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 5 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   59.0 to 56.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    38.0 to 62.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  50.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +7.7
Locality                               Tungu
Date                                   Oct. 10 to 15
Elevation                              12,751 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   50.8 to 52.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    34.5 to 53.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  41.1
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +10.7
Locality                               Lamteng
Date                                   Aug. 1 to 3
Elevation                              8,884 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   62.2 to 62.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    47.5 to 78.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  57.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +5.3
Locality                               Choongtam
Date                                   Aug. 13 to 15
Elevation                              5,268 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   72.1
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    54.8 to 82.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  72.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.1
Locality                               Lachoong
Date                                   Aug. 17 to 19
Elevation                              8,712 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   66.3 to 66.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    43.5 to 68.7
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  57.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +9.2
Locality                               Yeumtong
Date                                   Sept. 2 to 8
Elevation                              11,919 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   55.5 to 56.1
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    39.5 to 59.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  47.2
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +8.6
Locality                               Momay
Date                                   Sept. 10 to 14
Elevation                              15,362 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   52.5 to 51.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    31.0 to 62.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  4106
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +10.4
Locality                               Yeumtso
Date                                   Oct. 16 to 18
Elevation                              16,8.8 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   43.5 to 43.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    4.0 to 52.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  30.6
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +12.6
Locality                               Lachoong
Date                                   Oct. 24 to 25
Elevation                              8,712 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   60.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    39.0 to 62.6
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  52.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +8.2
Locality                               Great Rungeet
Date                                   Feb. 11 to 13
Elevation                              818 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   65.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    56.0 to 71.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  63.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.5
Locality                               Leebong
Date                                   Feb. 14 to 15
Elevation                              6,000 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   50.8 to 52.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    41.5 to 56.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  46.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +5.4
Locality                               Kursiong
Date                                   Apr. 16
Elevation                              4,813 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   64.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    63.0 to 60.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  63.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.5
Locality                               Leebong
Date                                   Apr. 22
Elevation                              6,000 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   61.8 to 62.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    54.0 to 67.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  60.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.9
Locality                               Punkabaree
Date                                   May 1
Elevation                              1,850 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   80.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    68.2 to 78.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  76.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +4.0
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Aug. 15 to 16
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  5 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   62.0 to 62.8
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    58.0 to 66.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  61.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.9
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Aug. 15 to 16
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  7 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   61.5 to 62.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    58.0 to 66.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  61.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.4
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Aug. 20 to 22
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  5 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   61.6 to 61.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    58.7 to 67.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  61.7
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -0.1
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Aug. 20 to 22
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  7 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   60.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    58.7 to 67.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  61.7
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -1.0
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Sept. 9
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  5 ft. 0 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   60.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    56.2 to 65.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  60.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.2
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Sept. 9
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  7 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   60.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    56.2 to 65.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  60.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.5
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Oct. 6
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  7 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   60.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    52.0 to 61.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  58.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.5
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Oct. 20
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  7 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   58.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    49.7 to 55.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  56.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.0
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   Feb. 18 to 28
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   46.0 to 46.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    36.0 to 52.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  43.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +6.4
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   March 1 to 13
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   46.3 to 48.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    34.5 to 53.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  46.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.3
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   April 18 to 20
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   55.3 to 56.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    46.0 to 61.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  54.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.7
Locality                               Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's)
Date                                   April 30
Elevation                              7,430 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   57.4
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    46.0 to 61.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  55.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.4
Locality                               Superintendent's house
Date                                   April 21 to 30
Elevation                              6,932 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   58.8 to 60.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    48.5 to 65.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  58.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +1.5
*Sheltered by trees, ground spongy and wet.

SERIES III.--_Plains of Bengal_
Locality                               Kishengunj
Date                                   May 3 to 4
Elevation                              131 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   82.8 to 83.0 (Dry sand)
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    70.0 to 85.7 (Dry sand)
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  82.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.8
Locality                               Dulalgunj
Date                                   May 7
Elevation                              130 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   81.3 to 83.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    74.3 to 90.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  82.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -0.7
Locality                               Banks of Mahanuddy river
Date                                   May 8
Elevation                              100 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   79.3 to 83.0*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    75.0 to 91.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  83.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -3.7
Locality                               Banks of Mahanuddy river
Date                                   May 9
Elevation                              100 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   87.5 to 83.0*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    77.8 to 92.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  83.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -4.5
Locality                               Banks of Mahanuddy river
                                       May 10
Elevation                              100 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   88.0 to 83.0*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    78.5 to 91.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  82.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -5.7
Locality                               Maldah
Date                                   May 11
Elevation                              100 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   88.8 to 83.0*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    75.3 to 91.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  82.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -6.5
Locality                               Mahanuddy river
Date                                   May 14
Elevation                              100 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   87.8 to 83.0*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    71.0 to 91.7
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  82.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -4.5
Locality                               Ganges
Date                                   May 15
Elevation                              100 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   88.0 to 83.0*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    73.0 to 87.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  82.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -5.7
Locality                               Bauleah
Date                                   May 16 to 18
Elevation                              130 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   87.8 to 89.8
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    78.0 to 106.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  80.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +7.3
Locality                               Dacca
Date                                   May 28 to 30
Elevation                              72 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   84.9 to 84.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    75.3 to 95.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  83.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.9
* Soil, a moist sand.

SERIES IV.--_Khasia Mountains._

Locality                               Churra
Date                                   June 23 to 25
Elevation                              4,226 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   71.8 to 72.3*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    64.8 to 72.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  69.9
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.2
Locality                               Churra
Date                                   Oct. 29 to Nov. 16
Elevation                              4,226 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   68.3 to 64.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    70.7 to 49.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  61.7
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +4.5
Locality                               Kala-panee
Date                                   June 28 to 29
Elevation                              5,302 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   69.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    64.2 to 71.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  67.2
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.0
Locality                               Kala-panee
Date                                   Aug. 5 to 7
Elevation                              5,302 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   70.0 to 70.4
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    72.2 to 61.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  64.9
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +5.2
Locality                               Kala-panee
Date                                   Sept. 13 to 14
Elevation                              5,302 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   70.2*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    65.5 to 69.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  66.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +4.2
Locality                               Kala-panee
Date                                   Oct. 27 to 28
Elevation                              5,302 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   66.3*
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    64.0 to 56.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  60.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +6.3
Locality                               Moflong
Date                                   June 30 to July 4
Elevation                              6,062 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   65.0 to 67.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    61.0 to 68.3
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  64.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.2
Locality                               Moflong
Date                                   July 30 to Aug. 4
Elevation                              6,062 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   67.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    64.0 to 75.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  68.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -1.2
Locality                               Moflong
Date                                   Oct. 25 to 27
Elevation                              6,062 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   63.2
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    63.7 to 55.7
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  64.1
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -0.9
Locality                               Syong
Date                                   July 29 to 30
Elevation                              5,725 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   69.2 to 69.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    60.0 to 78.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  69.2
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +0.1
Locality                               Syong
Date                                   Oct. 11 to 12
Elevation                              5,725 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   67.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    65.7 to 55.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  62.8
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +4.2
Locality                               Myrung
Date                                   July 9 to 10
Elevation                              5,647 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   66.2 to 66.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    60.0 to 73.8
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  67.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -1.2
Locality                               Myrung
Date                                   July 26 to 29
Elevation                              5,647 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   68.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    78.0 to 64.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  71.1
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -2.8
Locality                               Myrung
Date                                   Oct. 12 to 17
Elevation                              5,647 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   66.0 to 64.8
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    70.0 to 55.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  63.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.4
Locality                               Myrung
Date                                   Oct. 21 to 25
Elevation                              5,647 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   64.8 to 64.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    66.0 to 53.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  60.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.9
Locality                               Nunklow
Date                                   July 11 to 26
Elevation                              4,688 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   70.5 to 71.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    65.5 to 81.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  71.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      -0.5
Locality                               Nunklow
Date                                   Oct. 17 to 21
Elevation                              4,688 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   68.8 to 68.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    75.7 to 58.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  6601
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +2.5
Locality                               Pomrang
Date                                   Sept. 15 to 23
Elevation                              5,143 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   70.3 to 68.5
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    73.0 to 57.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  65.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.9
Locality                               Pomrang
Date                                   Oct. 6 to 10
Elevation                              5,143 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   68.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    73.7 to 58.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  65.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.3
* Hole full of rain-water.

SERIES V.--_Jheels, Gangetic Delta, and Chittagong._
Locality                               Silchar
Date                                   Nov.27 to 30
Elevation                              116 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   77.7 to 75.8
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    55.0 to 81.7
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  69.1
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +7.7
Locality                               Silhet
Date                                   Dec. 3 to 7
Elevation                              133 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   73.5 to 73.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    63.0 to 74.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  69.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.1
Locality                               Noacolly
Date                                   Dec. 18 to 19
Elevation                              20 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   73.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    58.5 to 76.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  69.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.8
Locality                               Chittagong
Date                                   Dec. 23 to 31
Elevation                              191 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   72.5 to 73.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    53.2 to 75.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  63.8
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +9.0
Locality                               Chittagong
Date                                   Jan. 14 to 16
Elevation                              116 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   73.3 to 73.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    61.3 to 78.7
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  65.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +8.3
Locality                               Chittagong flagstaf hill
Date                                   Dec. 28 to 30
Elevation                              151 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   72.0 to 71.8
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    55.2 to 74.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  65.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +6.6
Locality                               Hat-hazaree
Date                                   Jan.4 to 5
Elevation                              20 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   71.3
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    50.5 to 62.0
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  65.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +6.3
Locality                               Sidhee
Date                                   Jan.5 to 6
Elevation                              20 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   71.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    52.7 to 70.2
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  65.0
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +6.0
Locality                               Hattiah
Date                                   Jan.6 to 9
Elevation                              20 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   67.7 (shaded by trees)
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    50.2 to 77.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  64.5
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.2
Locality                               Seetakoond
Date                                   Jan. 9 to 14
Elevation                              20 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   73.3 to 73.7
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    55.2 to 79.5
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  70.2
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +3.3
Locality                               Calcutta*
Date                                   Jan. 16 to Feb. 5
Elevation                              18 feet
Depth                                  2 ft. 7 in.
Temp. of sunk Therm.                   76.0 to 77.0
Extreme Temperature of Air observed    56.5 to 82.0**
Approximate Mean Temp. of Air deduced  69.3
Diff. between Air and sunk Therm.      +7.2
* Observations at the Mint, etc., by Mr. Muller.
** Observations for temperature of air, taken at the Observatory.



I have selected as many of my observations for temperature of the sir
as appeared to be trustworthy, and which, also, were taken
contemporaneously with others at Calcutta, and I have compared them
with the Calcutta observations, in order to find the ratio of
decrement of heat to an increase of elevation. The results of several
sets of observations are grouped together, but show so great an
amount of discrepancy, that it is evident that a long series of
months and the selection of several stations are necessary in a
mountain country to arrive at any accurate results. Even at the
stations where the most numerous and the most trustworthy
observations were recorded, the results of different months differ
extremely; and with regard to the other stations, where few
observations were taken, each one is affected differently from
another at the same level with it, by the presence or proximity of
forest, by exposure to the east or west, to ascending or descending
currents in the valleys, and to cloud or sunshine. Other and still
more important modifying influences are to be traced to the monthly
variations in the amount of humidity in the air and the strength of
its currents, to radiation, and to the evolution of heat which
accompanies condensation raising the temperature of elevated regions
during the rainy season. The proximity of large masses of snow has
not the influence I should have expected in lowering the temperature
of the surrounding atmosphere, partly no doubt because of the more
rapid condensation of vapours which it effects, and partly because of
the free circulation of the currents around it. The difference
between the temperatures of adjacent grassy and naked or rocky spots,
on the other hand, is very great indeed, the former soon becoming
powerfully heated in lofty regions where the sun's rays pass through
a rarefied atmosphere, and the rocks especially radiating much of the
heat thus accumulated, for long after sunset. In various parts of my
journals I have alluded to other disturbing causes, which being all
more or leas familiar to meteorologists, I need not recapitulate
here. Their combined effects raise all the summer temperatures above
what they should theoretically be.

In taking Calcutta as a standard of comparison, I have been guided by
two circumstances; first, the necessity of selecting a spot where
observations were regularly and accurately made; and secondly, the
being able to satisfy myself by a comparison of my instruments that
the results should be so far strictly comparable.

I have allowed 1 degree Fahr. for every degree in latitude
intervening between Sikkim and Calcutta, as the probable ratio of
diminution of temperature. So far as my observations made in east
Bengal and in various parts of the Gangetic delta afford a means of
solving this question, this is a near approximation to the truth. The
spring observations however which I have made at the foot of the
Sikkim Himalaya would indicate a much more rapid decrement; the mean
temperature of Titalya and other parts of the plains south of the
forests, between March and May being certainly 6 degrees-9 degrees
lower than Calcutta: this period however is marked by north-west and
north-east winds, and by a strong haze which prevents the sun's rays
from impinging on the soil with any effect. During the southerly
winds, the same region is probably hotter than Calcutta, there being
but scanty vegetation, and the rain-fall being moderate.

In the following observations solitary readings are always rejected.

I.--_Summer or Rainy Season observations at Dorjiling._

Observations taken during the rainy season of 1848, at Mr. Hodgson's
(Jillapahar, Dorjiling) alt. 7,430 feet, exposure free to the north
east and west, the slopes all round covered with heavy timber; much
mist hence hangs over the station. The mean temperatures of the month
at Jillapahar are deduced from horary observations, and those of
Calcutta from the mean of the daily maximum and minimum.

             No. of Obs.              Temp.        Equiv. of
Month        at Jillapahar   Temp.    Calcutta     1 degree F.
July         284             61.7     86.6         364 feet
August       378             61.7     85.7         346 feet
September    407             58.9     84.7         348 feet
October      255             55.3     83.3         316 feet
           1,324                         Mean      344 feet

IL--_Winter or dry season obaervatians at Dorjiling._

1. Observations taken at Mr. J. Muller's, and chiefly
   by himself, at "the Dale;" elev. 6,956 feet; a
   sheltered spot, with no forest near, and a free
   west exposure. 103 observations. Months: November,
   December, January, and February                  1 degree=313 ft.
2. Observations at Dr. Campbell's (Superintendent's)
   house in April; elev. 6,950 feet; similar exposure
   to the last. 13 observations in April            1 degree=308 ft.
3. Observations by Mr. Muller at Colinton; elev. 7,179
   feet; free exposure to north-west; much forest about
   the station, and a high ridge to east and south.
   38 observations in winter months                 1 degree=290 ft.
4. Miscellaneous (11) observations at Leebong;
   elev. 6000 feet; in February; free exposure all
   round                                            1 degree=266 ft.
5. Miscellaneous observations at "Smith's Hotel;"
   Dorjiling, on a cleared ridge; exposed all round;
   elev. 6,863 feet. April and May 	                1 degree=252 ft.
                      Mean of winter observations   1 degree=286 ft.
                      Mean of summer observations   1 degree=344 ft.
                                            Mean             310 ft.

III.--_Miscellaneous observations taken at different places in
Dorjiling, elevations 6,900 to 7,400 feet, with the differences of
temperature between Calcutta and Dorjiling._

                    Number      Difference       Equivalent
Month				of Observ.  of Temperature 	 1 degree F.=
January             27          30.4             287 ft.
February            84          32.8             265
March               37          41.9             196
April                7          36.0             236
March and April     29          37.3             224
July                83          23.6             389
August              74          22.4             415
September           95          25.7             350
October             18          29.5             297
               Sum 454     Mean 31.1        Mean 296 ft.

These, it will be seen, give a result which approximates to that of
the sets I and II. Being deduced from observations at different
exposures, the effects of these may be supposed to be eliminated.
It is to be observed that the probable results of the addition of
November and December's observations, would be balanced by those of
May and June, which are hot moist months.

IV.--_Miscellaneous cold weather observations made at various
elevations between 1000 and 17,000 feet, during my journey into east
Nepal and Sikkim, in November to January 1848 and 1849.
The equivalent to 1 degree Fahr. was deduced from the mean of all
the observations at each station, and these being arranged in sets
corresponding to their elevations, gave the following results._

                       Number of  Number of      Equivalent
Elevation              Stations   Observations   1 degree F.=
 1,000 to  4,000 ft.   27         111            215 ft.
 4,000 to  8,000 ft.   52         197            315
 8,000 to 12,000 ft.   20          84            327
12,000 to 17,000 ft.   14          54            377
                  Sum 113     Sum 446       Mean 308 ft.

The total number of comparative observations taken during that
journey, amounted to 563, and the mean equivalent was 1 degree=303
feet, but I rejected many of the observations that were obviously
unworthy of confidence.

V.--_Miscellaneous observations (chiefy during the rainy season)
taken during my journey into Sikkim and the frontier of Tibet,
between May 2nd and December 25th, 1848. The observations were
reduced as in the previous instance. The rains on this occasion were
unusually protracted, and cannot be said to have ceased till
mid-winter, which partly accounts for the very high temperatures._

                       Number of  Number of      Equivalent
Elevation              Stations   Observations   1 degree F.=
 1,000 to  4,000 ft.   10          45            422 ft.
 4,000 to  8,000 ft.   21         283            336
 8,000 to 12,000 ft.   18         343            355
12,000 to 17,000 ft.   29         219            417
                   Sum 78     Sum 890       Mean 383 ft.

The great elevation of the temperature in the lowest elevations is
accounted for by the heating of the valleys wherein these
observations were taken, and especially of the rocks on their floors.
The increase with the elevation, of the three succeeding sets, arises
from the fact that the loftier regions are far within the mountain
region, and are less forest clad and more sunny than the
outer Himalaya.

A considerable number of observations were taken during this journey
at night, when none are recorded at Calcutta, but which are
comparable with contemporaneous observations taken by Mr. Muller at
Dorjiling. These being all taken during the three most rainy months,
when the temperature varies but very little during the whole
twenty-four hours, I expected satisfactory results, but they proved
very irregular and anomalous.

The means were--

At 21 stations of greater elevation than Dorjiling  1 degree=348 ft.
At 17 stations lower in elevation                   1 degree=447 ft.

VI.--_Sixty-four contemporaneous observations at Jillapahar, 7,430 feet, and the bed of the Great Rungeet river, 818 feet; taken in
January and February, give                        1 degree=322 feet.

VII.--_Observations taken by burying a thermometer two and a half to
three feet deep, in a brass tube, at Dorjiling and at various
elevations near that station._

Month            February and March
Upper Stations   Jillapahar, 7,430 feet
Lower Stations   Leebong, 6000 feet
1 degree=        269 feet

Month            February
Upper Stations   Jillapahar, 7,430 feet
Lower Stations   Guard-house, Great Rungeet, 1,864 feet
1 degree=        298 feet

Month            April
Upper Stations   Leebong, 6000 feet
Lower Stations   Guard-house, Great Rungeet, 1,864 feet
1 degree=        297 feet

Month            April
Upper Stations   Jillapahar, 7,430 feet
Lower Stations   Khersiong, 4,813 feet
1 degree=        297 feet

Month            March and April
Upper Stations   Khersiong, 4,813 feet
Lower Stations   Punkabaree, 1,850 feet
1 degree=        223 feet

Month            March, April, May
Upper Stations   Jillapahar, 7,430 feet
Lower Stations   Punkabaree, 1,850 feet
1 degree=        253 feet

Mean             1 degree=273 feet

The above results would seem to indicate that up to an elevation
of 7,500 feet, the temperature diminishes rather more than 1 degree
Fahr. for every 300 feet of ascent or thereabouts; that this
decrement is much leas in the summer than in the winter months; and I
may add that it is less by day than by night. There is much
discrepancy between the results obtained at greater or less
elevations than 7000 feet; but a careful study of these, which I have
arranged in every possible way, leads me to the conclusion that the
proportion map be roughly indicated thus:--

1 degree=300 feet, for elevations from   1000 to   8000 feet.
1 degree=320 feet, for elevations from   8000 to 10,000 feet.
1 degree=350 feet, for elevations from 10,000 to 14,000 feet.
1 degree=400 feet, for elevations from 14,000 to 18,000 feet.

VIII.--_Khasia mountain observations._

Churra Poonji
Date                         June 13 to 26
Calcutta Observations        86.3 degrees
Number of Observations       63
Churra Observations          70.1 degrees
Number of Observations       67
1 degree=                    300 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,069 feet

Date                         August 7 to September 4
Calcutta Observations        84.6 degrees
Number of Observations       196
Churra Observations          69.2 degrees
Number of Observations       214
1 degree=                    331 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,225 feet

Date                         October 29 to November 16
Calcutta Observations        80.7 degrees
Number of Observations       85
Churra Observations          63.1 degrees
Number of Observations       133
1 degree=                    282 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,225 feet

Total Calcutta Observations  354
Total Churra Observations    414
Mean 1 degree=               304 feet

Date                         June, Aug., Sept.
Calcutta Observations        85.5 degrees
Number of Observations       35
Khasia Observations          67.4 degrees
Number of Observations       35
1 degree=                    345 feet
Altitude above the Sea       5,302 feet

Date                         June, July, Aug., Oct.
Calcutta Observations        85.9 degrees
Number of Observations       73
Khasia Observations          68.8 degrees
Number of Observations       74
1 degree=                    373 feet
Altitude above the Sea       6,062 feet

Calcutta Observations        85.1 degrees
Number of Observations       4
Khasia Observations          65.0 degrees
Number of Observations       6
1 degree=                    332 feet
Altitude above the Sea       5,734 feet

Date                         August
Calcutta Observations        89.1 degrees
Number of Observations       42
Khasia Observations          69.7 degrees
Number of Observations       41
1 degree=                    343 feet
Altitude above the Sea       5,632 feet

Date                         October
Calcutta Observations        82.9 degrees
Number of Observations       21
Khasia Observations          63.2 degrees
Number of Observations       58
1 degree=                    336 feet
Altitude above the Sea       5,632 feet

Calcutta Observations        86.4 degrees
Number of Observations       139
Khasia Observations          70.9 degrees
Number of Observations       139
1 degree=                    372 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,688 feet

Date                         September 23
Calcutta Observations        78.5 degrees
Number of Observations       9
Khasia Observations          66.3 degrees
Number of Observations       12
1 degree=                    499 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,863 feet

Date                         September 23
Calcutta Observations        82.7 degrees
Number of Observations       51
Khasia Observations          65.8 degrees
Number of Observations       51
1 degree=                    369 feet
Altitude above the Sea       5,143 feet

Date                         September 23
Calcutta Observations        79.9 degrees
Number of Observations       15
Khasia Observations          67.1 degrees
Number of Observations       11
1 degree=                    396 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,105 feet

Date                         September 23
Calcutta Observations        79.5 degrees
Number of Observations       11
Khasia Observations          69.0 degrees
Number of Observations       7
1 degree=                    567 feet
Altitude above the Sea       4,387 feet

Total Calcutta Observations  400
Total Khasia Observations    434
Mean 1 degree=               385 feet

The equivalent thus deduced is far greater than that brought out by
the Sikkim observations. It indicates a considerably higher
temperature of the atmosphere, and is probably attributable to the
evolution of heat during extraordinary rain-fall, and to the
formation of the surface, which is a very undulating table-land, and
everywhere traversed by broad deep valleys, with very steep, often
precipitous flanks; these get heated by the powerful sun, and from
them, powerful currents ascend. The scanty covering of herbage too
over a great amount of the surface, and the consequent radiation of
heat from the earth, must have a sensible influence on the mean
temperature of the summer months.



The use of the boiling-point thermometer for the determination of
elevations in mountainous countries appearing to me to be much
underrated, I have collected the observations which I was enabled to
take, and compared their results with barometrical ones.

I had always three boiling-point thermometers in use, and for several
months five; the instruments were constructed by Newman, Dollond,
Troughton, and Simms, and Jones, and though all in one sense good
instruments, differed much from one another, and from the truth.
Mr. Welsh has had the kindness to compare the three best instruments
with the standards at the Kew Observatory at various temperatures
between 180 degrees and the boiling-point; from which comparison it
appears, that an error of l.5 degrees may be found at some parts of
the scale of instruments most confidently vouched for by admirable
makers. Dollond's thermometer, which Dr. Thomson had used throughout
his extensive west Tibetan journeys, deviated but little from the
truth at all ordinary temperatures. All were so far good, that the
errors, which were almost entirely attributable to carelessness in
the adjustments, were constant, or increased at a constant ratio
throughout all parts of the scale; so that the results of the
different instruments have, after correction, proved strictly

The kettle used was a copper one, supplied by Newman, with free
escape for the steam; it answered perfectly for all but very high
elevations indeed, where, from the water boiling at very low
temperatures, the metal of the kettle, and consequently of the
thermometer, often got heated above the temperature of the
boiling water.

I found that no confidence could be placed in observations taken at
great elevations, by plunging the thermometer in open vessels of
boiling water, however large or deep, the abstraction of heat from
the surface being so rapid, that the water, though boiling below, and
hence bubbling above, is not uniformly of the same temperature

In the Himalaya I invariably used distilled, or snow or rain-water;
but often as I have tried common river-water for comparison, I never
found that it made any difference in the temperature of the
boiling-point. Even the mineral-spring water at Yeumtong, and the
detritus-charged glacial streams, gave no difference, and I am hence
satisfied that no objection can be urged against river waters of
ordinary purity.

On several occasions I found anomalous rises and falls in the column
of mercury, for which I could not account, except theoretically, by
assuming breaks in the column, which I failed to detect on lifting
the instrument out of the water; at other times, I observed that the
column remained for several minutes stationary, below the true
temperature of the boiling water, and then suddenly rose to it.
These are no doubt instrumental defects, which I only mention as
being sources of error against which the observer must be on the
watch: they can only be guarded against by the use of two

With regard to the formula employed for deducing the altitude from a
boiling-point observation, the same corrections are to a great extent
necessary as with barometric observations: if no account is taken of
the probable state of atmospheric pressure at the level of the sea at
or near the place of observation, for the hour of the day and month
of the year, or for the latitude, it is obvious that errors of 600 to
1000 feet may be accumulated. I have elsewhere stated that the
pressure at Calcutta varies nearly one inch (1000 feet), between July
and January; that the daily tide amounts to one-tenth of an inch
(=100 feet); that the multiplier for temperature is too great in the
hot season and too small in the cold; and I have experimentally
proved that more accuracy is to be obtained in measuring heights in
Sikkim, by assuming the observed Calcutta pressure and temperature to
accord with that of the level of the sea in the latitude of Sikkim,
than by employing a theoretical pressure and temperature for the
lower station.

In the following observations, the tables I used were those printed
by Lieutenant-Colonel Boileau for the East India Company's Magnetic
Observatory at Simla, which are based upon Regnault's Table of the
'Elastic Force of Vapour.' The mean height of the barometrical column
is assumed (from Bessel's formula) to be 29.924 at temp. 32 degrees,
in lat. 45 degrees, which, differing only .002 from the barometric
height corresponding to 212 degrees Fahrenheit, as determined
experimentally by Regnault, gives 29.921 as the pressure
corresponding to 212 degrees at the level of the sea.

The approximate height in feet corresponding to each degree of the
boiling-point, is derived from Oltmann's tables. The multipliers for
the mean temperature of the strata of atmosphere passed through, are
computed for every degree Fahrenheit, by the formula for expansion
usually employed, and given in Baily's Astronomical Tables and Biot's
Astronomie Physique.

For practical purposes it may be assumed that the traveller, in
countries where boiling-point observations are most desired, has
never the advantage of a contemporaneous boiling-point observation at
a lower station. The approximate difference in height is hence, in
most cases, deduced from the assumption, that the boiling-point
temperature at the level of the sea, at the place of observation, is
212 degrees, and that the corresponding temperature of the air at the
level of the sea is hotter by one degree for every 330 feet of
difference in elevation. As, however, the temperature of boiling
water at the level of the sea varies at Calcutta between July and
January almost from 210.7 degrees to 212.6 degrees, I always took the
Calcutta barometer observation at the day and hour of my
boiling-point observation, and corrected my approximate height by as
many feet as correspond to the difference between the observed height
of the barometer at Calcutta and 29.921; this correction was almost
invariably (always normally) subtractive in the summer, often
amounting to upwards of 400 feet: it was additive in winter, and
towards the equinoxes it was very trifling.

For practical purposes I found it sufficient to assume the Calcutta
temperature of the air at the day and hour of observation to be that
of the level of the sea at the place of observation, and to take out
the multiplier, from the mean of this and of the temperature at the
upper station. As, however, 330 feet is a near approach to what I
have shown (Appendix I.) to be the mean equivalent of 1 degree for
all elevations between 6000 and 18,000 feet; and as the majority of
my observations were taken between these elevations, it results that
the mean of all the multipliers employed in Sikkim for forty-four
observations amounts to 65.1 degrees Fahrenheit, using the Calcutta
and upper station observations, and 65.3 degrees on the assumption of
a fall of 1 degree for every 330 feet. To show, however, how great an
error may accrue in individual cases from using the formula of
1 degree to 330, I may mention that on one occasion, being at an
elevation of 12,000 feet, with a temperature of the air of 70
degrees, the error amounted to upwards of 220 feet, and as the same
temperature may be recorded at much greater elevations, it follows
that in such cases the formula should not be employed without

A multitude of smaller errors, arising from anomalies in the
distribution of temperature, will be apparent on consulting my
observations on the temperature at various elevations in Sikkim;
practically these are unavoidable. I have also calculated all my
observations according to Professor J. Forbes's formula of 1 degree
difference of temperature of boiling-water, being the equivalent of
550 feet at all elevations. (See Ed. Phil. Trans., vol xv. p. 405.)
The formula is certainly not applicable to the Sikkim Himalaya; on
the contrary, my observations show that the formula employed for
Boileau's tables gives at all ordinary elevations so very close an
approach to accuracy on the mean of many observations, that no
material improvement in its construction is to be anticipated.

At elevations below 4000 feet, elevations calculated from the
boiling-point are not to be depended on; and Dr. Thomson remarked the
same in north-west India: above 17,000 feet also the observations are
hazardous, except good shelter and a very steady fire is obtainable,
owing to the heating of the metal above that of the water. At all
other elevations a mean error of 100 feet is on the average what is
to be expected in ordinary cases. For the elevation of great mountain
masses, and continuously elevated areas, I conceive that the results
are as good as barometrical ones; for the general purposes of
botanical geography, the boiling-point thermometer supersedes the
barometer in point of practical utility, for under every advantage,
the transport of a glass tube full of mercury, nearly three feet
long, and cased in metal, is a great drawback to the unrestrained
motion of the traveller.

In the Khasia mountains I found, from the mean of twelve stations and
twenty-three observations, the multiplier as derived from the mean of
the temperature at the upper station and at Calcutta, to be 75.2
degrees, and as deduced from the formula to be 73.1 degrees.
Here, however, the equivalent in feet for 1 degree temp. is in summer
very high, being 1 degree=385 feet. (See Appendix I.) The mean of all
the elevations worked by the boiling-point is upwards of 140 feet
below those worked by the barometer.

The following observations are selected as having at the time been
considered trustworthy, owing to the care with which they were taken,
their repetition in several cases, and the presumed accuracy of the
barometrical or trigonometrical elevation with which they are
compared. A small correction for the humidity of the air might have
been introduced with advantage, but as in most barometrical
observations, the calculations proceed on the assumption that the
column of air is in a mean state of saturation; as the climate of the
upper station was always very moist, and as most of the observations
were taken during the rains, this correction would be always
additive, and would never exceed sixty feet.

It must be borne in mind that the comparative results given below
afford by no means a fair idea of the accuracy to be obtained by the
boiling-point. Some of the differences in elevation are probably due
to the barometer. In other cases I may have read off the scale wrong,
for however simple it seems to read off an instrument, those
practically acquainted with their use know well how some errors
almost become chronic, how with a certain familiar instrument the
chance of error is very great at one particular part of the scale,
and how confusing it is to read off through steam alternately from
several instruments whose scales are of different dimensions, are
differently divided, and differently lettered; such causes of error
are constitutional in individual observers. Again, these observations
are selected without any reference to other considerations but what I
have stated above; the worst have been put in with the best. Had I
been dependent on the boiling-point for determining my elevations, I
should have observed it oftener, or at stated periods whenever in
camp, worked the greater elevations from the intermediate ones, as
well as from Calcutta, and resorted to every system of interpolation.
Even the following observations would be amended considerably were I
to have deduced the elevation by observations of the boiling-point at
my camp, and added the height of my camp, either from the
boiling-point observations there, or by barometer, but I thought it
better to select the most independent method of observation, and to
make the level of the sea at Calcutta the only datum for a lower

SERIES I.--_Sikkim Observations._

                                  Elev. by
                                  Barom. or   Temp.        Elev.
Place.                    Month.  Trigonom.   B.P.   Air   by B.P.  Error
                                  (feet)                  (feet)   (feet)
Great Rungeet river       Feb.    B     818   210.7  56.3     904   + 86
Bhomsong                  Dec.        1,544   210.2  58.0   1,321   -223
Guard House, Gt Rungeet   April       1,864   208.1  72.7   2,049   +185
Choongtam                 Aug.        5,268   202.6  65.0   5,175   - 93
Dengha                    Aug.        6,368   200.6  68.0   6,246   -122
Mr. Muller's (Dorjiling)  Feb.    Tr  6,925   199.4  41.3   7,122   +197
Dr. Campbell's (do.)      April       6,932   200.1  59.5   6,745   -187
Mr. Hodgson's  (do.)      Feb.    B   7,429   199.4  47.6   7,318   -111
Sinchul                   Jan.    Tr  8,607   197.0  41.7   8,529   - 78
Lachoong                  Aug.    B   8,712   196.4  54.6   8,777   + 65
Lamteng                   Aug.        8,884   196.3  77.0   8,937   + 53
Zemu Samdong              July        8,976   196.1  58.6   8,916   - 60
Mainom                    Dec.    Tr 10,702   193.4  38.0  10,516   -186
Junct. of Zemu & Thlonok  July    B  10,846   193.6  52.0  10,872   + 26
Tallum                    July       11,482   191.8  54.6  11,451   - 31
Yeumtong                  Sept.      11,919   191.3  52.2  11,887   - 32
Zemu river                June       12,070   190.4  48.5  12,139   + 69
Tungu                     July &     12,751   189.7  43.4  12,696   - 55
Jongri                    Jan.       13,194   188.8  26.0  13,151   - 43
Zemu river                June       13,281   188.5  47.0  13,360   + 79
Lachee-pia                Aug.       15,262   186.0  42.8  14,912   -350
Momay                     Sept.      15,362   186.1  48.6  14,960   -402
Palung                    Oct.       15,620   185.4  45.8  15,437   -183
Kongra Lama               July       15,694   184.1  41.5  16,041   +347
Snow-bed above Yeumtong   Sept.      15,985   184.6  44.5  15,816   -169
Tunkra pass               Aug.       16,083   164.1  39.0  16,137   + 54
Yeumtso                   Oct.       16,808   183.1  15.0  16,279   -529
Donkia                    Sept.      16,978   182.4  41.0  17,049   + 71
Mountain above Momay      Sept.      17,394   181.9  47.8  17,470   + 76
Sebolah pass              Sept.      17,585   181.9  46.5  17,517   - 68
Kinchinjhow               Sept.      17,624   181.0  47.5  18,026   +402
Donkia Mountain           Sept.      18,510   180.6  37.1  18,143   -367
  Ditto                   Sept.      18,307   179.9  38.8  18,597   +290
Bhomtso                   Oct.       18,450   181.2  52.0  18,305   -145
Donkia pass               Sept.      18,466   181.2  45.5  17,866   -600
                             Mean                                   - 58

SERIES II.--_Khasia Mountains._

                            Elev.                     Elev.
Place          Month        Bar.     B.P.    Tm. Air  by B.P.  Diff.
                            (feet)                    (feet)   (feet)
Churra         June         4,069    204.4   70.3     4,036     - 33
Amwee          Sept.        4,105    205.1   67.7     4,041     - 64
Nurtiung       Oct.         4,178    205.0   70.0     4,071     -107
Nunklow        July         4,688    203.9   69.8     4,333     -355
Kala-panee     June, July,  5,302    202.2   65.8     5,202     -100
               Sept., Oct.
Myrung         July         5,647    201.9   69.4     5,559     - 88
Syong          July         5,725    201.8   70.8     5,632     - 93
Moflong        July, Aug.,  6,062    201.4   64.8     5,973     - 89
               Oct., Nov.
Chillong       Nov.         6,662    201.2   62.8     6,308     -354
                      Mean  5,160                     5,016     -143



The few actinometer observations which I was enabled to record, were
made with two of these instruments constructed by Barrow, and had the
bulbs of their thermometers plunged into the fluid of the chamber.
They were taken with the greatest care, in conformity with all the
rules laid down in the "Admiralty Guide," and may, I think, be
depended upon. In the Sikkim Himalaya, a cloudless day, and one
admitting of more than a few hours' consecutive observations, never
occurs--a day fit for any observation at all is very, rare indeed.
I may mention here that a small stock of ammonia-sulphate of copper
in crystals should be supplied with this instrument, also a wire and
brush for cleaning, and a bottle with liquid ammonia: all of which
might be packed in the box.

Active 6.568. Time always mean.

_Jillapahar, Dorjiling, Elev. 7430 feet,
Lat. 27 degrees 3 minutes N., Long. 88 degrees 13 minutes E._

A.-- APRIL 19th, 1850.
_Watch slow 1 minute 15 seconds mean time._

                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  8.0  to  8.13   11.1   65.5    0.9900   22.960   53.5
      8.15 to  8.28   15.0   69.5   12.2645
      9.0  to  9.13   17.7   71.5   14.5140   22.948   56.0
     10.0  to 10.13   19.1   72.5   15.4710   22.947   57.0
     11.0  to 11.13   19.0   75.0   14.9150   22.946   58.5
p.m.  0.0  to  0.13   18.8   75.0   12.7600   22.944   60.3
      1.0  to  1.13   17.2   73.3   13.8976   22.939   59.4
      2.0  to  2.13   17.4   74.0   13.8330   22.914   60.3
Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  8.0  to  8.13   33.8  19.7   .505   88.0  Day unexceptional,
      8.15 to  8.28                      111.5  wind S.W., after
      9.0  to  9.13   37.2  18.8   .153  110.0  10 a.m. squally.
     10.0  to 10.13   39.7  17.3   .550  121.0
     11.0  to 11.13   38.2  20.3   .500  125.0
p.m.  0.0  to  0.13   44.8  15.5   .592  120.0
      1.0  to  1.13   40.7  18.7   .546  122.0  Dense haze over
      2.0  to  2.13   44.1  16.2   .577  108.0  snowy Mts.

B.--APRIL 20th
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  8.0  to  8.13   11.8   64.0   10.9150   22.969   43.4
      9.0  to  9.13   17.8   73.3   14.2750   22.974   36.2
     10.0  to 10.13   18.8   65.0   14.7580   22.985   57.0
Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  8.0  to  8.13   43.4  10.8   .691   74.0  Dense haze,
      9.0  to  9.13   44.1  12.1   .662   92.0  S.E. wind,
     10.0  to 10.13   42.5  14.5   .609   92.0  cloudless sky.

_Superintendent's House, Dorjiling. Elev. 6932 feet._
C.--APRIL 21st.
_Watch slow 1 minute mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  8.35 to  8.48   17.3   65.0   15.7084            56.4
      9.07 to  9.20   20.9   72.7   16.8872   23.447   63.8
     10.0  to 10.13   23.9   77.3   18.3791            60.8
     11.0  to 11.13   24.4   81.0   17.8864
Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  8.35 to  8.48   47.6   8.8   .741   97.0  Day very fine,
      9.07 to  9.20   49.9  13.9   .628  100.0  snowy Mts. in
     10.0  to 10.13   49.2  11.6   .677  109.0  dull red haze,
     11.0  to 11.13                      107.5  wind S.E. faint.

_Rampore Bauleah (Ganges). Elev. 130 feet.
Lat. 22 degrees 24 minutes N., Long. 88 degrees 40 minutes E._

MAY 17th, 1850.
_Watch slow 15 seconds mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  7.51 to  8.13   13.0   88.0    8.8790   29.698   87.5
      9.03 to  9.16   19.5   96.0   12.5190            92.0
      9.20 to  9.33   21.2  107.0   12.7836   29.615   92.3
     11.15 to 11.28   21.1  105.0   12.8499            98.5
     11.32 to 11.45   16.5  108.7    9.8770   29.620   98.3
p.m.  1.20 to  1.33   21.6  108.5   12.9348           104.5
      1.40 to  1.53   21.4  113.7   12.4976           105.8
Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  7.51 to  8.13   80.1   7.4   .793   91.0  S.E. wind, very
      9.03 to  9.16   81.2  10.8   .715   83.8  hazy to west, sky
      9.20 to  9.33   80.2  12.1   .687  132.0  pale blue.
     11.15 to 11.28   74.8  23.7   .478   98.5  Wind west, rising.
     11.32 to 11.45   74.3  24.0   .475  142.0
p.m.  1.20 to  1.33   76.7  27.8   .425  144.0
      1.40 to  1.53   72.2  33.6   .355  134.0

_Churra, Khasia Mountains. Elev. 4225 feet,
Lat. 25 degrees 15 minutes N., Long. 91 degrees 47 minutes E._
A--NOVEMBER 4th, 1850.
_Watch slow 7 minutes mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  6.20 to  6.30    5.0   63.7    4.6400   25.781   57.8
      6.32 to  6.42    7.4   65.4    6.6896            59.0
      7.55 to  8.05   20.0   77.5   15.2400            63.5
      8.08 to  8.18   21.0   82.0   15.2040            64.4
      8.20 to  8.30   24.2   85.8   10.8432            64.8
Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  6.20 to  6.30   53.1   4.7   .850   75.0  Sky faint blue,
      6.32 to  6.42   54.8   4.2   .870   83.0  cloudless,
      7.55 to  8.05   56.9   6.6   .806  108.0  wind S.W.,
      8.08 to  8.18   57.3   7.1   .790  106.5  clouding.
      8.20 to  8.30   59.5   5.3   .837  113.5

_Watch slow 7 minutes mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced     Air
a.m.  6.39 to  6.49   11.2   70.2    9.3408     59.4
      6.51 to  7.01   13.4   72.8   10.8138     60.5
      7.56 to  8.06   18.4   73.2   15.0161     61.7
      8.08 to  8.21   20.4   77.7   15.4836     63.3
      9.26 to  9.36   23.8   79.5   17.8072
      9.37 to  9.47   25.1   84.0   17.7959
     10.57 to 11.07   29.0   89.5   19.5460     66.7

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  6.39 to  6.49   57.6   1.8   .940         Wind S.W.,
      6.51 to  7.01   57.8   2.7   .918         clouds rise and
      7.56 to  8.06   57.7   4.0   .875         disperse.
      8.08 to  8.21   58.7   4.6   .860         Sky pale.
      9.26 to  9.36
      9.37 to  9.47
     10.57 to 11.07   60.8   5.9   8.28  126.0

_Watch slow 7 minutes mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  6.05 to  6.18    2.6   62.0    2.4986   25.781   56.5
      6.22 to  6.35    6.5   63.5    6.0710            57.0
      6.38 to  6.51    9.6   66.7    8.5152            61.0
      8.27 to  8.37   21.7   78.8   16.2750            64.2
      8.39 to  8.52   23.0   81.7   19.4750            64.5
Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  6.05 to  6.18   54.5   2.0   .935         Sunrise, 6, pale
      6.22 to  6.35   55.1   1.9   .935         yellow red,
      6.38 to  6.51   57.4   3.6   .888         cloudless.
      8.27 to  8.37   59.3   4.9   .855  100.0  Cirrhus below.
      8.39 to  8.52   59.4   5.1   .847  105.0

D.--NOVEMBER 14th.
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  6.12 to  6.22    2.9   60.6    3.5988   25.783   51.5
      6.24 to  6.37    6.1   66.0    5.4472            52.7
      7.13 to  7.23   12.4   70.8   10.2672            56.5
      7.24 to  7.34   14.7   76.0   11.4025            57.8
      8.34 to  8.44   19.9   82.8   14.2653            59.8
      8.47 to  9.00   21.7   88.8   14.7343            60.5
      9.53 to 10.03   23.5   86.6   16.2620   25.832   67.2
     10.04 to 10.17   25.3   89.5   17.0775            67.0
     11.24 to 11.31   33.3  111.5   20.7014   25.819   64.6

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  6.12 to  6.22   49.4   2.1   .930
      6.24 to  6.37   50.3   2.4   .925
      7.13 to  7.23   52.3   4.2   .900   98.0  Thick cumulus low
      7.24 to  7.34   53.1   4.7   .855  104.0  on plains.
      8.34 to  8.44   50.8   9.0   .742  117.0  Sunrise yellow
      8.47 to  9.00   51.6   8.9   .730  121.0  red.
      9.53 to 10.03   61.6   5.6   .832  127.0  Cloudless.
     10.04 to 10.17   58.8   8.2   .778  133.0
     11.24 to 11.31   59.0   5.6   .832  130.0  Clouds rise.

E.--NOVEMBER 15th.
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  9.53 to 10.06   25.8   78.0   17.5306   25.854   63.0
     10.50 to 11.03   26.1   80.5   19.1835            64.0
     11.31 to 11.44   28.5   84.0   20.2065            65.3
p.m.  0.33 to  0.46   30.9   91.5   20.4267   25.844   65.8
      1.07 to  1.21   29.1   90.5   20.4388            67.0
      2.47 to  3.00   21.1   75.0   16.5653   25.808   67.2
      3.48 to  4.00   16.7   73.0   13.4435            62.0
      4.03 to  4.16   16.2   75.0   12.7170   25.803   61.5

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.
a.m.  9.53 to 10.06   55.3   8.7   .772    Sky cloudless.
     10.50 to 11.03   52.8  11.2   .690    Wind N.E.
     11.31 to 11.44   51.9  13.4   .638
p.m.  0.33 to  0.46   51.2  14.6   .620
      1.07 to  1.21   49.6  17.4   .560
      2.47 to  3.00   56.6  10.6   .708
      3.48 to  4.00   50.8  11.2   .690
      4.03 to  4.16   50.5  11.0   .692

_Silchar (Cachar), Elev. 116 feet,
Lat. 24 degrees 30 minutes N., Long. 93 degrees E. (approximate)._

NOVEMBER 26th, 1850
_Watch slow 13 minutes 39 seconds mean time._

                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  9.11 to  9.24   19.4   69.0   16.4706            66.3
      9.34 to  9.41   22.7   81.0   16.5937
      9.50 to  9.57   25.3   87.5   17.3558   29.999   68.7
     10.07 to 10.14   26.5   91.5   17.5695            70.3
     11.03 to 11.16   26.3   89.0   17.5251            73.2
p.m.  0.00 to  0.13   26.4   90.0   17.8144   29.967   74.5
      0.58 to  1.11   27.6   94.0   17.9676            76.8
      2.51 to  3.04   23.0   93.0   15.0880   29.892   78.5
      3.55 to  4.08   17.6   91.5   11.6688            79.5
      4.09 to  4.22   15.5   93.5   11.0215   29.881   79.4
      4.23 to  4.36   12.0   93.7    7.8360            78.5

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.
a.m.  9.11 to  9.24   63.5   2.8   .860    Dense fog till
      9.34 to  9.41                        7.30 p.m.
      9.50 to  9.57   61.5   7.2   .788    Wind north. Clear.
     10.07 to 10.14   62.7   7.6   .780
     11.03 to 11.16   60.3  12.9   .657    Wind. N.E. Light
p.m.  0.00 to  0.13   61.7  12.8   .658    cirrhus low.
      0.58 to  1.11   60.3  16.5   .586
      2.51 to  3.04   62.1  16.4   .588    Streaks of cirrhus
      3.55 to  4.08   57.0  22.5   .480    aloft.
      4.09 to  4.22   62.1  17.3   .570
      4.23 to  4.36   62.1  16.4   .588    Sun sets in hazy

_Chittagong, Elev. 200 feet,
Lat. 22 degrees 20 minutes N., Long. 91 degrees 55 minutes E._

A.--DECEMBER 31st, 1850.
_Watch slow 3 minutes 45 seconds mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  7.39 to  7.52   10.0   70.0    8.3700            57.0
      8.40 to  8.53   21.3   91.5   14.1219   29.874   59.5
      9.04 to  9.08   23.2   89.5   15.6163            63.3
      9.52 to  9.56   24.3   87.3   16.7341   29.923   64.5
     10.02 to 10.06   25.1   90.5   16.7668            65.7
     11.16 to 11.29   24.3   84.5   17.1558            68.5
     11.52 to 11.56   26.6   92.6   17.5028   29.892   69.5
p.m.  1.38 to  1.41   24.7   84.0   17.5123            71.7
      1.47 to  1.51   25.4   90.7   16.8418
      3.10 to  3.17   21.1   86.0   14.6645   29.831   71.0
      3.18 to  3.25   19.3   89.3   13.0468

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  7.39 to  7.52   55.7   1.3   .960         Cloudless.
      8.40 to  8.53   57.2   2.3   .920  127.0  Mountains clear.
      9.04 to  9.08   59.7   3.6   .890         Wind E.N.E. Cool.
      9.52 to  9.56   61.3   3.2   .900  142.0
     10.02 to 10.06   60.4   5.3   .840  148.0  Wind N.W.
     11.16 to 11.29   58.6   9.9   .722  150.0
     11.52 to 11.56   59.2  10.3   .710         Wind S.W.
p.m.  1.38 to  1.41   61.8   9.9   .720
      1.47 to  1.51
      3.10 to  3.17   60.5  10.5   .710         Clouds about in
      3.18 to  3.25                             patches.

B.-- JANUARY 1, 1851.
_Watch slow 3 minutes 45 seconds mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m.  7.34 to  7.41   10.0   69.4    8.4200   29.948   55.4
      8.38 to  8.45   16.0   70.0   13.3920            58.9
      9.44 to  9.51   19.5   74.7   15.3660   29.891   63.2
     10.46 to 10.53   21.0   78.2   15.8550            66.7
     11.50 to 11.57   21.5   81.2   15.6950            69.8
p.m.  0.06 to  0.13   24.1   88.0   16.4603   29.850   70.3
      0.58 to  1.02   23.9   87.2   16.4432            71.0
      1.45 to  1.52   21.4   84.5   15.0870            71.3
      3.15 to  3.22   18.1   82.5   13.0320   29.798   71.3
      4.27 to  4.34   10.2   82.0    7.3746            70.0
      4.36 to  4.43    9.8   84.0    6.9482
      4.45 to  4.52    8.5   85.0    5.9670
      4.56 to  5.09    5.6   85.0    3.9312            67.5
      5.12 to  5.18    3.8   84.0    2.6942   29.778   68.7

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m.  7.34 to  7.41   54.0   1.4   .953         Mist rises and
      8.38 to  8.45   57.7   1.2   .970  104.5  drifts westward
      9.44 to  9.51   61.7   1.5   .960  115.0  till 7.30 a.m.
     10.46 to 10.53   62.4   4.3   .870  129.0
     11.50 to 11.57   58.3  11.5   .688  117.0  Wind N.W., clouds
p.m.  0.06 to  0.13   56.0  14.3   .625  122.5  rise.
      0.58 to  1.02   56.7  14.3   .625
      1.45 to  1.52   57.5  13.8   .633  117.0
      3.15 to  3.22   57.1  14.2   .625
      4.27 to  4.34   59.5  10.5   .708
      4.36 to  4.43
      4.45 to  4.52
      4.56 to  5.09   62.7   4.8   .855         Sunset cloudless.
      5.12 to  5.18   62.2   6.5   .810

C.--JANUARY 2, 1851.
_Watch slow 3 minutes mean time._
                             Tem.   Act.
Hour                  Act.   Act.   Reduced   Barom.   Air
a.m. 10.02 to 10.09   19.2   71.0   15.8592            64.5
     10.20 to 10.24   22.6   79.0   16.9048   29.861   65.6
p.m.  0.03 to  0.10   24.7   89.2   16.6972   29.858   69.0
      0.22 to  0.25   25.9   95.5   18.6796            70.7
      2.04 to  2.08   23.3   91.5   15.4479            71.2
      2.10 to  2.14   23.8   93.0   15.6128

Hour                  D.P.  Diff.  Sat.  Bulb
a.m. 10.02 to 10.09   60.6   3.9   .878  116.0  Low, dense fog at
     10.20 to 10.24   61.4   4.2   .872         sunrise, clear at
p.m.  0.03 to  0.10   59.3   9.7   .728  119.0  9 a.m.
      0.22 to  0.25   57.5   3.2   .650         Hills hazy and
      2.04 to  2.08   61.0  10.2   .718  112.0  horizon grey.
      2.10 to  2.14



In the following tables I have given the elevations of 300 places,
chiefly computed from barometric data. For the computations such
observations alone were selected as were comparable with
contemporaneous ones taken at the Calcutta Observatory, or as could,
by interpolation, be reduced to these, with considerable accuracy:
the Calcutta temperatures have been assumed as those of the level of
the sea, and eighteen feet have been added for the height of the
Calcutta Observatory above the sea. I have introduced two standards
of comparison where attainable; namely, 1. A few trigonometrical
data, chiefly of positions around Dorjiling, measured by
Lieutenant-Colonel Waugh, the Surveyor-General, also a few measured
by Mr. Muller and myself, in which we can put full confidence: and,
2. A number of elevations in Sikkim and East Nepal, computed by
simultaneous barometer observations, taken by Mr. Muller at
Dorjiling. As the Dorjiling barometer was in bad repair, I do not
place so much confidence in these comparisons as in those with
Calcutta. The coincidence, however, between the mean of all the
elevations computed by each method is very remarkable; the difference
amounting to only thirty feet in ninety-three elevations; the excess
being in favour of those worked by Dorjiling. As the Dorjiling
observations were generally taken at night, or early in the morning,
when the temperature is below the mean of the day, this excess in the
resulting elevations would appear to prove, that the temperature
correction derived from assuming the Calcutta observations to
correspond with eighteen feet above the level of the sea at Sikkim,
has not practically given rise to much error.

I have not added the boiling-point observations, which afford a
further means of testing the accuracy of the barometric computations;
and which will be found in section J of this Appendix.

The elevation of Jillapahar is given as computed by observations
taken in different months, and at different hours of the day; from
which there will be seen, that owing to the low temperature of
sunrise in the one case, and of January and October in the others,
the result for these times is always lowest.

Moat of the computations have been made by means of Oltmann's tables,
as drawn up by Lieutenant-Colonel Boileau, and printed at the
Magnetic Observatory, Simla; very many were worked also by Bessell's
tables in Taylor's "Scientific Memoirs," which, however, I found to
give rather too high a result on the averages; and I have therefore
rejected most of them, except in cases of great elevation and of
remarkable humidity or dryness, when the mean saturation point is an
element that should not be disregarded in the computation. To these
the letter B is prefixed. By far the majority of these elevations are
not capable of verification within a few feet; many of them being of
villages, which occupy several hundred feet of a hill slope: in such
cases the introduction of the refinement of the humidity correction
was not worth the while.

SERIES I.--_Elevations on the Grand Trunk-road. February, 1848._

No. of                                                     Elevation
Obs.    Name of Locality                                   Feet
 1      Burdwan                                                 93
 2      Gyra                                                   630
 3      Fitcoree                                               860
 2      Tofe Choney                                            912
 4      Maddaobund                                            1230
 1      Paras-nath saddle                                   B.4231
 2          ,,     cast peak                                  4215
 1          ,,     flagstaff                                  4428
 1          ,,     lower limit of _Clematis_ and _Berberis_   3162
 1      Doomree                                                996
 1      Highest point on grand trunk-road                     1446
 4      Belcuppee                                             1219
 1      Hill 236th mile-stone                                 1361
 3      Burree                                                1169
 1      Hill 243rd mile-stone                                 1339
 3      Chorparun                                             1322
 3      Dunwah                                                 625
 1      Bahra                                                  479
 1      284th mile-stone                                       474
 2      Sheergotty                                             460
 4      Muddunpore                                             402
 1      312th mile-stone                                       365
 3      Naurungabad                                            337
 4      Baroon (on Soane)                                      344
 4      Dearse                                                 332

SERIES II.--_Elevations in the Soane Valley. March, 1848._

No. of                                                     Elevation
Obs.    Name of Locality                                   Feet
 3      Tilotho                                                 395
 6      Akbarpore                                               403
 2      Rotas palace                                           1489
 4      Tura                                                    453
 3      Soane-pore                                              462
 6      Kosdera                                                 445
 4      Panchadurma                                             492
 1      Bed of Soane above Panchadurma                          482
 3      Pepura                                                  587
 1      Bed of Soane river                                      400
 9      Chahuchee                                               490
 4      Hirrah                                                  531
 4      Kotah                                                   541
 4      Kunch                                                   561
 7      Sulkun                                                  684

SERIES III.--_Elevations on the Kymore Hills. March, 1848._

No. of                                                     Elevation
Obs.    Name of Locality                                   Feet
 2      Roump                                                  1090
 9      Shahgunj                                               1102
 1      Amoee                                                   818
 1      Goorawul                                                905
 9      Mirzapore (on the Ganges)                               362

SERIES IV.--_Elevations near Dorjiling. 1848 to 1850._

No. of                                                     Elevation
Obs.      Name of Locality                                 Feet
          Jillapahar (Mr. Hodgson's house)
      9                  ,,                sunrise            7301
    110                  ,,                9.50 p.m.          7443
    104                  ,,                noon               7457
     99                  ,,                2.40 p.m.          7477
     93                  ,,                4 p.m.             7447
     37                  ,,                sunset             7447
-------                                                      -------
Sum 452                                                Mean   7429
=======         _Ditto by Monthly observations._             =======
     27   January                                             7400
     84   February                                            7445
     37   March                                               7517
      7   April                                               7582
     83   July                                                7412
     74   August                                              7421
     95   September                                           7454
     18   October                                             7351
-------                                                      -------
Sum 434                                                Mean   7448
=======                                                      =======
    103   The Dale (Mr. Muller's)                           B.6957
              ,,      by trigonometry                         6952
     16   Superintendent's house                            B.6932
              ,,      by trigonometry                         6932
     38   Colinton (Mr. Muller's)                           B.7179
     25   Leebong                                           B.5993
            ,,        by trigonometry                         6021*
      2   Summit of Jillapahar                              B.7896
      2   Smith's hotel                                       6872
      7   Monastery hill below the Dale                     B. 214.1
          The Dale by barometer                               6952
          Monastery hill by trigonometry                      7165.3
      1   Ging (measured from Dale)                         B.5156
     12   Guard-house at Great Rungeet                      B.1864
      2   Bed of Great Rungeet at cane-bridge                  818
      5   Guard-house at Little Rungeet                       1672
      8   Sinchul top                                         8655
              ,,       by trigonometry                        8607
      4   Saddle of road over shoulder of Sinchul             7412
      4   Senadah (Pacheem) bungalow                          7258
      1   Pacheem village                                     3855
     13   Kursiong bungalow                                 B.4813
     13   Punkabaree                                          1815
      2   Rungniok village                                  B.4565
      2   Tonglo, summit                                    B.10.078
            ,,      ,,   by trigonometry                    10.079.4
     13     ,,    Saddle below summit                       B.10.008
      1     ,,    Rocks on ascent of                        B.8148
      4   Source of Balasun                                   7436
                 ,,         by Dorjiling                      7451
      8   Goong ridge                                         7441
* To summit of chimney, which may be assumed to be 30 feet above
where the barometer was hung.

SERIES V.--_Elevations in East Nepal, October to December, 1848._

No.                                             By         By
of                                              Calcutta   Dorjiling
Obs.  Name of Locality                          Barometer  Barometer
                                                Feet       Feet
 1    Source of Myong river                      4,798
 7    Myong valley, camp in                      4,345      4,345
 7    Myong valley                               3,801      3,763
 5    Purmiokzong                                4,507      4,535
 2    Shoulder of Nanki                          7,216
 1           ,,         Shepherds' hut on do.    8,999
 3    Summit of Nanki                            9,994     10,045
 8          ,,        Camp on Nanki              9,315      9,324
 3    Jummanoo                                   4,320      4,404
 5    Sulloobong                                 5,244      5,311
 4    Bheti village                              4,683
 4    Sakkiazong village                         5,804      5,847
 3    Camp on ridge of mountain                  8,315      8,391
 1    Peak on Sakkiazong                         9,356      9,289
 3    Makarumbi                                  5,444      5,525
 3    Pemmi river                                2,149      2,262
 3    Tambur river at junction with Pemmi        1,289      1,487
 1    Camp on Tambur, Nov. 13                    1,418      1,496
 3          ,,        Nov. 14                    1,600
 2    Chintam village                            3,404
 8    Mywa Guola                                 2,079      2,185
 3    Tambur river, Nov. 18                      2,515      2,574
 3          ,,      Nov. 19                      3,113      3,289
 3    Taptiatok village                          4,207      4,359
 2    Loontoong village                          5,615      5,738
 2    Tambur river, Nov. 23                      8,066      8,096
10    Wallanchoon village                       10,384     10,389
 6    Tuquoroma                                 12,889     12,999
 1    Wallanchoon pass                        B.16,764     16,748
 1    Foot of pass-road                         13,501     13,518
 4    Yangma Guola                               9,236      9,322
 2    Base of great moraine                     12,098     12,199
 2    Top of moraine above ditto              B.   679
 9    Yangma village camp                     B.13,516     13,488
 1    Lake bed in valley                        15,186
 1    Upper ditto (Pabuk)                     B.16,038
 4    Yangma valley camp, Dec. 2                10,997     11,001
 1    Kambachen pass                          B.15,770
 3    Camp below ditto                          11,643     11,611
 1    Kambachen village                         11,378
 2    Camp in valley                            11,454     11,514
 1    Choonjerma pass                         B.15,259
 4    Camp below ditto                          13,289     13,287
 1    Yalloong river-terrace                    10,449
 4    Camp side of valley                       10,080     10,035
 3    Yankatang village                          5,530      5,598
 1    Saddle on road south of Khabili            5,746
 8    Khabang village                            5,495      5,515
 1    Spur of Sidingbah, crossed Nov. 19         6,057      5,980
 3    Yangyading village                         4,082      4,145
 4    Sablakoo                                   4,635      4,718
 7    Iwa river, Dec. 12                         3,747      3,818
 2        ,,     Dec. 13                         6,134      6,184
 4    Singalelah, camp on                        9,263      9,328
 1    Islumbo pass                              10,388

SERIES VI.-- _Elevations in Sikkim, December, 1848,
and January, 1849._

No.                                             By         By
of                                              Calcutta   Dorjiling
Obs.  Name of Locality                          Barometer  Barometer
                                                Feet       Feet
 4    Kulhait valley, camp in                    6,406       6,374
 6    Lingcham village                           4,892       4,848
 5    Bed of Great Rungeet, December 20          1,805       1,874
 6    Lingdam village, December 21               5,552       5,556
 6    Nampok village                             4,354       4,501
 7    Bhomsong                                   1,556       1,533
 8    Mainom top                             Tr.10,702    B.10,613
 1    Neon-gong Goompa                           5,225
 1    Pass from Teesta to Rungeet                6,824
 6    Lingdam village                            5,349       5,401
 1    Great Rungeet below Tassiding              2,030
      Tassiding tamples                          4,840
 5    Sunnook, camp on                           3,955       4,018
 1    Bed of Ratong                              2,481
 1    Pemiongchi temple                          7,083
10    Camp at Pemiongchi village                 6,551       6,616
 9    Tchonpong village                          4,952       5,003
 1    Bed of Rungbi river                        3,165
 9    Camp on Ratong river                       3,100       3,242
 1    Doobdi Goompa                              6,493       6,451
22    Yoksun                                     5,600       5,635
 7    Dumpook                                    6,646       6,710
15    Buckim                                     8,625       8,693
 7    Mon Lepcha top                            13,090      13,045
21    Jongri                                  B.13,170      13,184
 1    Ratong below Mon Lepcha                    7,069       7,217
 1      ,,   below Yoksun                        3,729       3,851
 1    Catsuperri lake                            6,068       6,009
 1        ,,     temple                          6,493       6,476
 4    Tengling village                           5,295       5,219
 5    Rungbee river bed                          3,230       3,350
 5    Changachelling temple                      6,805       6,850
 5    Kulhait river                              3,075       3,243
 1    Saddle of Hee hill                         7,289
 6    Camp on Hee hill                           6,609       6,744

SERIES VII.--_Elevations in the Sikkim Terai and Plains of India,
Gangetic Delta and Jheels._

No. of                                                     Elevation
Obs.    Name of Locality                                   Feet
 3      Siligoree Bungalow                                  302
12      Titalya                                             326
 3      Sahibgunj (west of Titalya)                         231
 4      Bhatgong                                            225
 4      Thakya-gunj                                         284
 4      Bhojepore                                           404
 5      Rummai                                              293
 5      Rangamally                                          262
 5      Belakoba                                            368
 1      Mela-meli                                           337
 6      Kishengunj                                          131
43      Mahanuddy river between Kishengunj and Maldah       153
24             ,,          ,,   Maldah and Rampore Bauleah   98
12      Rampore (Mr. Bell's)                                130
13      Dacca (Mr. Atherton's)                               72
54      Jheels, Dacca and Pundua                         *-.003
33      Megna river (June 1st-6th)                        +.008
13      Soormah (June 9th)                                +.048
 4      Pundua (June 10th and 11th)                       +.018
 3        ,,   (Sept. 7th)                                -.016
 5        ,,   (Nov. 16th and 17th)                       -0.66
* The observations marked thus * are the differences in inches
between the readings of my barometer at the station, and that at
the Calcutta observatory, which is 18 feet above the sea-level.

SERIES VII-- _Elevations in Sikkim, May to December, 1849._

No.                                             By         By
of                                              Calcutta   Dorjiling
Obs.  Name of Locality                          Barometer  Barometer
                                                 Feet       Feet
 2    Mik, on Tendong                              3,912
 4    Namtchi, camp on spur                        5,608
 1    Tendong summit                             B.8,671
 2    Temi, Teesta valley                          4,771   Tr.8,663
 4    Nampok, Teesta valley                      B.5,138
 8    Lingmo, Teesta Valley                      B.2,861      5,033
 4    Lingtam spur, Teesta valley                B.4,743      2,838
 4    Gorh,              ,,                      B.4,061      4,867
 2    Bling-bong,        ,,                      B.2,657      4,195
 8    Linga village,     ,,                      B.2,724      2,711
10    Singtam, May 14 to 16                      B.4,435      2,839
16    Singtam (higher on hill) Oct. 30 to Nov. 2 B.4,575
 5    Niong                                                   3,954
 2    Namgah                                       4,229
 7    Chakoong                                     4,371      4,443
27    Choongtam, May                               5,245      5,284
37    Choongtam, August                            5,247      5,297
 4    Dholep, Lachen                               6,120      6,145
 4    Dengha, Lachen                               6,337      6,399
 3    Latong, Lachen                               6,471      6,310
 8    Kampo Samdong                                7,315      7,344
 1    Chateng                                      8,819      8,695
 1    Chateng, lower on spur                       8,493      8,343
33    Lamteng village                              8,900      8,867
53    Zemu Samdong                                 9,026      8,926
 1    Snow bed across Zemu river                   9,828
 4    Camp on banks of Zemu                       10,223     10,271
74    Junction on Thlonok and Zemu                10,864     10,828
47    Camp on banks of Zemu river                 12,064     12,074
 1    Zemu river, June 13                         12,422
 1    Zemu river, higher up, June 13              13,281
 2    Yeunga (Lachen valley)                      10,196
43    Tallum Samdong                              11,540     11,424
20    Tungu, July                                 12,779     12,723
30    Tungu, October                              12,799     12,747
 1    Palung plains                               15,697
 3    Sitong                                      15,372
 2    Kongra Lama pass                            15,745     15,642
 5    Yeumtso (in Tibet)                          16,808
 2    Bhomtso (in Tibet)                          18,590
 6    Cholamoo lakes (in Tibet)                   16,900
 2    Donkia pass, October                        18,589
 2    Donkia pass, September                      18,387
56    Momay Samdong                               15,362     15,069
 1    Donkia, September 13                        16,876     17,079
 1    Kinchinjhow, September 14                   17,495     17,656
 1    Sebolah pass                                17,604     17,567
 1    South shoulder of Donkia, September 20      18,257     18,357
 1    Mountain north of Momay, September 17                B.17,394
 1    West shoulder of Donkia mountain, Sept. 26           B.18,510

      _The following were measured trigonometrically._
      Forked Donkia mountain                              Tr.20,870
      Kinchinjhow mountain                                Tr.22,750
      Tomo-chamo, east top of Kinchinjhow                 Tr.21,000
      Thlonok mount, Peak on                              Tr.20,000