The name of this place frequently occurs during the early period of Arab connection with Sind; but neither its orthography nor position can be established with certainty. The Chach-náma, in different passages, calls it Armáel, Armaná-bíl, Armapilla, and Armábel (p. 157). The Futúhu-l buldán has Armáíl; which M. Reinaud reads Armâyl, but considers the true reading to be Armâ-byl, for the reason given in the note.* Ibn Khurdádba and Istakhri write Armábíl (pp. 14, 29); Ibn Haukal according to the Ashkálu-l Bilád has Armáil (p. 34), and Armábíl (p. 38), Gildemeister, his translator, reads it as Armâil, and suggests Armâbil as preferable.* The Nubian Geographer has Armíyáel and Armáyíl, which his trans­lator gives as Ermaiil (p. 77 note). The translator of Idrísí has the same (pp. 77 and 80). Abú-l Fídá, with his usual pretensions to accuracy, pronounces it Armábíl. The Marásidu-l Ittilá' has Armá-íl. Ouseley prefers Armaiel. An old and rare Persian lexicon writes it as Armábal.* The Tuhfatu-l Kirám has Armanbíla, Armanpela, or some similar name. It is not entered in any modern map which I have seen, except that in Rees' Cyclopœdia, where it receives the name of Ermajil, evidently derived from the map in the French or Dutch edition of Abbé Prévost's Histoire Générale des Voyages, Vol. xv., where it bears the same name, and is apparently set down from the statement of the Nubian Geographer. It is not in Ouseley's small map, prefixed to his Epitome of the Ancient History of Persia, which, however, includes some other names given only by the Arab geographers.

With respect to its locality, we read of Chach's going to it on his way from the Indus to Makrán, and his finding there a governor on the part of the late ruler of Sind; and we also read of Muhammad Kásim capturing it on his way from Makrán to Debal (pp. 119, 151 and 157). Istakhrí and Ibn Haukal speak of it as being in the pro­vince of Makrán, and six days' journey from Kíz, our modern Kedge. The other Arab geographers, as usual, follow these authorities.

Combining all these several names and statements together, I am disposed to consider that Armá-bel is the ancient and correct read­ing; and that its name is partly preserved in, while its position cor­responds with, the modern Bela, the capital of the province of Las. It is placed on a considerable eminence—a strong and rocky site on the northern bank of the Purálí (the Arabis of the ancients); and, though it is now partly surrounded by a sorry mud wall, and con­tains only about 300 houses, there are old Muhammadan sepulchres and other vestages of antiquity in its neighbourhood, especially about five miles to the westward, which seem to indicate its greater im­portance at some former period. Coins, trinkets, and funereal jars are occasionally found there; and in the nearest point of the con­tiguous hills, separating the province of Las from the old town of Jhow, numerous caves and rock-temples exist, ascribed by tradition to Farhád and the fairies, but which have been considered by an observant traveller to be the earthly resting abodes of the former chiefs, or governors, of the province.*

What adds much to the probability of this identification is, that Bela is mentioned in the native histories, not simply as Bela, but as Kárá-Bela; showing that it has been usual to prefix another name, which is now dropped in ordinary converse.