Page:Mongolia, the Tangut country, and the solitudes of northern Tibet vol 2 (1876).djvu/13

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THE SECOND VOLUME.

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THE TANGUTANS AND DUNGANS.

Tangutan territory—The people—Characteristic traits—Stature; appearance; mode of wearing hair—Kara Tangutans—Language; dress; habitations—Black tents and wooden huts—Occupations—The domesticated Yak—Its different uses—Nomadising habits—Contrast between Mongols and Tangutans—Industry; food; dirt—Tonkir, a trade centre—Avarice—Polite customs—Monogamy—Religion—Government—Dungans or Mahommedan rebels—Their temporary success—Chinese towns fall into their hands—Revolt becomes brigandage—Opportunities neglected—Causes of non-success—Cowardice of rebels and of Chinese—Inefficient weapons—Siege of Chobsen—Commercial relations between belligerents—Measures of Chinese Government—Chinese soldiers—Bad arms—Want of discipline—Opium smoking—Looting—Government defrauded—Desertion—Punishment—Low morals—Mode of fighting—State of Affairs in Kan-su—Chinese take the offensive—Advance on Si-ning—Assault of this town—Marriage of Emperor of China—Siege operations suspended—Cowardice of besieged—Capture of Si-ning and advance westwards—Tangutan Vocabulary
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KOKO-NOR AND TSAIDAM.

The lake—Colour of its waters—Island and temple—Fish—Legendary origin of lake—Its shores—Birds—Animals—The Kulan or wild ass—Eleuth Mongols—Low standard of civilisation—Kara-Tangutans—Their predatory habits—Mongol tradition concerning them—Administrative divisions of Koko-nor—We buy fresh camels—Tibetan envoy—Favourable opportunity of reaching Lhassa lost—We determine to advance—Guides—Temple of Kumbum and its sacred tree—Tibetan medicine—Route along shore of lake—Pouhain-gol—Huc's account of river inaccurate—Southern Koko-nor range—Djaratai-dabas salt basin—Princess of Koko-nor—The Tsing-hai-wang—Our reception—My reputation as saint, prophet, and physician—Baumsteitismus, a universal panacea—Mongol ailments—Plain of Tsaidam—The Baian-gol—Saline vegetation—Karmyk berries—Scarcity of animal life—Inhabitants—Lake Lob—Wild camels and wild horses—Autumn on Koko-nor—Clear atmosphere—Cultivated land—Crossing the marshes—Tsung-zasak—Mongol guide 'Chutun dzamba'
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