Village Being Rated For The Miri In The Land-Tax Book Of The Pasha, At A
Fixed Sum, That Sum Is Levied As Long As The Village Is At All
Inhabited, However Few May Be Its Inhabitants.
In the spring of every
year, or, if no strangers have arrived and settled, in every second or
Spring, the ground of the village is measured by long cords, when
every Fellah occupies as much of it as he pleases, there being always
more than sufficient; the amount of his tax is then fixed by the Sheikh,
at the ratio which his number of Fedhans bears to the whole number of
Fedhans cultivated that year. Whether the oxen be strong or weak, or
whether the quantity of seed sown or of land cultivated by the owner of
the oxen be more or less, is not taken into consideration; the Fellah is
supposed to keep strong cattle, and plough as much land as possible.
Some sow six Gharara of wheat or barley in the Fedhan, others five, and
others seven. The boundaries of the respective fields are marked by
large stones [Arabic]. The Miri is paid in kind, or in money, at the
will of the Pasha; the Fellahs prefer the latter, by which they are
always trifling gainers.
From what has been said, it is evidently impossible for the Fellah to
foresee the amount of Miri which he shall have to pay in any year; and
in addition to this vexation, the Miri for each village, though it is
never diminished upon a loss of inhabitants, is sometimes raised upon a
supposed increase of population, or upon some other pretext.
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