A General History And Collection Of Voyages And Travels - Volume 2 - By Robert Kerr


















































































































 -  The city of Derbent is situated on the shore of
the Caspian, which the Mardians call the sea of Bachaan - Page 230
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The City Of Derbent Is Situated On The Shore Of The Caspian, Which The Mardians Call The Sea Of Bachaan Or Bacou.

This city is said to have been built by Alexander the Great, and is called the _Iron Gate_, because

It entirely closes up the only passage from Tartary into Media and Persia, by means of a deep valley reaching from Circassia. Derbent is fortified with a thick well built wall, reaching from the castle at the foot of the mountain all the way to the sea; but not above a sixth part of the space within the walls is inhabited, all that end nearest the sea being in ruins, among which are several tombs. The country about this city produces abundance of all kinds of fruits, among which are plenty of grapes, from which the inhabitants make wine.

The Caspian, or Sea of Hircania, which has no communication whatever with the ocean, is about the same size with the Euxine or Black Sea, and is very deep. They catch in this sea great quantities of sturgeons, and sea- wolves as they are called; and there are prodigious quantities of sea- dogs, or seals, having the head, feet, and tail like ordinary dogs. The only other remarkable fish is of a round form, about a yard and a half in diameter, with no perceptible head or other member, from which the natives extract a great quantity of oil, which they use in their lamps, and with which they anoint their camels.

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