Online Encyclopedia

GHATS, or GHAUTS (literally " the Lan...

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V11, Page 916 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
Spread the word: it!
GHATS, or GHAUTS (literally " the Landing Stairs " from the sea, or " Passes "), two ranges of mountains extending along the eastern and western shores of the Indian peninsula. The word properly applies to the passes through the mountains, but from an early date was transferred by Europeans to the mountains themselves. The Eastern Ghats run in fragmentary spurs and ranges down the Madras coast. They begin in the Orissa district of Balasore, pass southwards through Cuttack and Puri, enter the Madras presidency in Ganjam, and sweep southwards through the districts of Vizagapatam, Godavari, Nellore, Chingleput, South Arcot, Trichinopoly and Tinnevelly. They run at a distance of 5o to 150 M. from the coast, except in Ganjam and Vizagapatam, where in places they almost abut on the Bay of Bengal. Their geological formation is granite, with gneiss and mica slate, with clay slate, hornblende and primitive limestone overlying. The average elevation is about 1500 ft., but several hills in Ganjam are between 4000 and 5000 ft. high. For the most part there is a broad expanse of low land between their base and the sea, and their line is pierced by the Godavari, Kistna and Cauvery rivers. The Western Ghats (Sahyadri in Sanskrit) start from the south of the Tapti valley, and run south through the districts of Khandesh, Nasik, Thana, Satara, Ratnagiri, Kanara and Malabar, and the states of Cochin and Travancore, meeting the Eastern Ghats at an angle near Cape Comorin. The range of the Western Ghats extends uninterruptedly, with the exception of a gap or valley 25 M. across, known as the Palghat gap, through which runs the principal railway of the south of India. The length of the range is 800 m. from the Tapti to the Palghat gap, and south of this about 200 M. to the extreme south of the peninsula. In many parts there is only a narrow strip of coast between the hills and the sea; at one point they rise in magnificent precipices and headlands out of the ocean. The average elevation is 3000 ft., precipitous on the western side facing the sea, but with a more gradual slope on the east to the plains below. The highest peaks in the northern section are Kalsubai, 5427 ft.; Harischandragarh, 4691 ft.; and Mahabaleshwar, where is the summer capital of the government of Bombay, 4700 ft. South of Mahabaleshwar the elevation diminishes, but again increases, and attains its maximum towards Coorg, where the highest peaks vary from 5500 to 7000 ft., and where the main range joins the interior Nilgiri hills. South of the' Palghat gap, the peaks of the Western Ghats rise as high as 8000 ft. The geological; formation is trap in the northern and gneiss in the southern section. GHAZAL! [Muhammad ibn Muhammad Abu IJamid al-Ghazali] (ro58-1III), Arabian philosopher and theologian, was born at Tus, and belonged to a family of Ghazala (near Tus) distinguished for its knowledge of canon law. Educated at first in 'Pas, then in Jorjan, and again in 'Pas, he went to college at Nishapur, where he studied under Juwaini (known as the Sixty-nine works are ascribed to Ghazali (cf. C. Brockelmann's Gesch. d. arabischen Litteratur, i. 421-426, Weimar, 1898). The most important of those which have been published are: a treatise on eschatology called Ad-durra ul-fakhira (" The precious pearl "), ed. L. Gautier (Geneva, 1878) ; the great work, Ihya ul-' Ulum (" Revival of the sciences ") (Bulaq, 1872; Cairo, 1889); see a commentary by al-Murtada called the Ithaf, published in 13 vols. at Fez, 1885-1887, and in to vols. at Cairo, 1893; the Bidayat ul-Hidaya (Bulaq, 187o, and often at Cairo); a compendium of ethics, Mizan ul-'Amal, translated into Hebrew, ed. J. Goldenthal (Paris, 1839) ; a more popular treatise on ethics, the Kimlya us-Sa'ada, published at Lucknow, Bombay and Constantinople, ed. H. A. Homes as The Alchemy of Happiness (Albany, N.Y., 1873) ; the ethical work 0 Child, ed. by Hammer-Purgstall in Arabic and German (Vienna, 1838) ; the Destruction of Philosophers (Tahafut ul-Falasifa) (Cairo, 1885, and Bombay, 1887). Of this work a French translation was begun by Carra de Vaux in Museon, vol. xviii. (1899) ; the Magasid ul-Falasifa, of which the first part on logic was translated into Latin by Dom. Gundisalvi (Venice, i5o6), ed. with notes by G. Beer (Leiden, 1888) ; the Kitab ul-Munqid, giving an account of the changes in his philosophical ideas, ed. by F. A. Schmelders in his Essai sur les ecoles philosophiques chez les Arabes (Paris, 1842), also printed at Constantinople, 1876, and translated into French by Barbier de Meynard in the Journal asiatique (1877, i. 1-93); answers to questions asked of him ed. in Arabic and Hebrew, with German translation and notes by H. Matter (Frankfort, 1896); Eng. trans., Confessions of al-Ghazzali, by Claud Field (1909). For Ghazali's life see McG. de Slane's translation of Ibn Khallikan, ii. 621 ff. ; R. Gesche's Uber Ghazzali's Leben and Werke (Berlin, 1859) ; D. B. Macdonald's " Life of al-Ghazzali," in Journal of American Oriental Society, vol. xx. (f899), and Carra de Vaux's Gazali (Paris, 1902) ; see ARABIAN PHILOSOPHY. (G. W. T.)
End of Article: GHATS, or GHAUTS (literally " the Landing Stairs " from the sea, or " Passes ")
GHAZI (an Arabic word, from ghazd, to fight)

Additional information and Comments

There are no comments yet for this article.
» Add information or comments to this article.
Please link directly to this article:
Highlight the code below, right click and select "copy." Paste it into a website, email, or other HTML document.