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Page Eemarks on the Sequel to the Periplus of the Erythra an Sca. By James
1 Taylor. Esq., ... Notes on an Image of Budha found at Sherghatti. By Capt. Kittoe,.. Proceedings of the Asiatic Society for January, 1847,.... Prees of various new or little known Species of Birds. By E. Blyth, Esq., 117 Błasha Paricheda, or Division of Language. By Dr. Roer, ..
177 Memorandum on Explosive Cotton. By W. B. O'Shaughnessy, Esq., M.D., Poreelings of the Asiatic Society for February, 1847,....... t's the Ruins of Anuradhapura. By William Knighton, Esq.,..... Neces of an Excursion to the Pindree Glacier. By Capt. Ed. Madden,.... Acont of the process of obtaining Gold from the sand of the River Beyass.
By Cart J. Abbott,
near Hugli. By D. Money, Esq.,, Xices on the Cares of Burabur. By Capt. Kittoe, Process of waking the Damascus Blade of Goojrat. By Capt James Abbott, Or a seu form of the Hog kind. By B. H. Hodgson. Esq.,..... 3-6-xs of various new or little known Species of Birds. By E. Blyth,
By W. B. O'Shaugh-
De 24 - Alt of the Kalan Musjeed. By Lieut. E. Lewis, and II. Cope, Esq., 577 Powdings of the Asiatic Society for May, 1847, ... Istange of Reptiles inhabiting the Malayan Peninsula and Islands. By ring the bou al and relative Geology of Singapore. By J. R. Logan, E.:41.,.*** *5 varv, ten (sehera of the Ruminants. By B. 11. Holyson, L.saj.,
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Proceedings of the Asiatic Society for June, 1817,.....
Remarks on the Sequel to the Periplus of the Erythrean Sea, and on
the country of the Seres, as described by Ammianus Marcellinus : By James Taylor, Esq., Civil Surgeon, Dacca.
At a period long anterior to the navigation of the Erythrean Sea by the Egyptian Greeks, the Arabians carried on a trade with India, and were the means, either directly, or through the Phænicians, of supplying the Western world with the valuable productions of the East. It is generally supposed that they availed themselves of their knowledge of the monsoons to make periodical voyages to this country across the open sea, and that they had settlements along its western coast, and even as far south as Ceylon. On these points, however, nothing certain na kw; and with the exception of the fact of there being enumerated in the Sacred Writings particular spices and perfumes which are the tadigriejus productions of India, there remains little or no evidence of the traje thut existed between Arabia and the farther East at the remote period bere referred to. Of the extent to which Indian commerce was carried on by the Sabeans, and Phænicians; of the commodities they gave in exchange for the merchandize they imported; or of the emporia on the Indian coast, whither they repaired for the purpose of traffic
, we are entirely ignorant : and indeed, of the ancient trade of India generally, it may be said, that we have no authentic information prior to the Christian era.* The earliest work extant, in which a detailed account
Appendix, No. I.
is given of the navigation and commerce along the coasts of India, is the Periplus of the Erythrean Sea. This treatise is ascribed by some geographers to Arrian of Nicomedia, the author of the Periplus of the Euxine Sea, but there is reason to believe that it was written not by him but by an Egyptian Greek of the same name, who, it is generally supposed, flourished early in the second century of the Christian era. Arrian of Alexandria, who appears to have been both a mariner and a merchant, delineates, in this narrative or journal, the course of naviga tion along the coasts of Eastern Africa, Arabia, Persia, and India. He mentions their principal seaports or marts, and specifies the articles of merchandize found in them--distinguishing them by commercial names, composed in some instances, of Greek terms, in others, of words derived from the language of the country. How far Arrian extended his voyage along the western coast of India, we are not informed. It is supposed, however, that he did not proceed beyond Nelkunda, the modern Nelisuram on the Malabar coast : and the account, therefore, which he gives of the countries situated to the south and east of this, is generally considered as the result, not of personal observation, but of information, obtained from native traders, whom he met in the ports of Western India. Rennell was of opinion that, in the time of the Ptolemies, the Egyptians sailed, not only beyond Cape Comorin, but even up the Ganges to Palibothra. It is probable, however, from what Strabo states, that foreigners seldom extended their voyages so far as the capital of India. Ile incidentally alludes, indeed, to sailing up the Ganges, or against the stream, to Palibothra ; but he does not state, whether this was done by Egyptian or by native navigators, while in another place he distinctly informs us that few of the Egyptian merchants, who sailed from the Red Sea to India, erer proceeded to the Ganges; and adds that the persons, who made this voyage, were illiterate and incompetent to comprehend matters or questions relating to Geography.* He describes the Ganges as entering the sea by a single mouth or outlett-an error which must be ascribed to the imperfect knowledge that the Egyptian traders had of the Gangetic Delta, and which Strabo could not have committed, if these navigators had been in the habit of ascending this river as high as Palibothra. It would seem from the Periplus, that the trade between Malabar and Coromandel was * Strabo, 686.
† Ibid, p. 690.
carried on in the coasting vessels of the country: but that voyages from
The concluding part of Arrian's journal, which relates to countries
Krighton's History of Ceylon, p. 11, 51.