Chilas ( ) is a small town
located in the Northern
connected to the Silk Road by the Karakoram
Highway which links it to Islamabad in the south via Dassu, Mansehra, Abbottabad and Haripur.
north, Chilas is connected to the Chinese cities of
Kashgar and Tashkurgan via Gilgit and Sust.
more than 20,000 pieces of rock art and petroglyphs all along the Karakoram
Highway in Northern
Areas of Pakistan that are
concentrated at ten major sites between Hunza and Harban.
The carvings were left by various invaders, traders and pilgrims
who passed along the trade route, as well
as by locals. The earliest date back to between 5000 and 1000
, showing single animals, triangular
men and hunting sccenes in which the animals are larger than the
hunters. These carvings
into the rock with stone tools and are covered with a thick
that proves their age.
The archaeologist Karl Jettmar
pieced together the history of the area from various inscriptions
and recorded his findings in Rockcarvings and Inscriptions in
the Northern Areas of Pakistan
and the later released
Between Gandhara and the Silk Roads - Rock carvings Along the
interesting to note that Kharoshthi term "Kaboa" ( or Kamboa)
appears in a short commemorative Kharosthi
inscription found from Chilas as
reported by Archaeological Department of Pakistan.
inscription has been transcribed, translated and interpreted by
Ahmad Hasan Dani
, a Pakistani
archaeologist, historian, and linguist, who was among the foremost
authorities on South Asian archaeology
and history. According to Dani, Kaboa or Kamboa of the inscription
is a Kharosthised form of Sanskrit
. Thus, it seems likely that Chilas also formed part
of ancient Kamboja kingdom.
Chilas comes under FANA( Federally Administered Northern Areas).
The weather is hot and humid in the summer and dry and cold in the
winter. It can be reached through Karakurram highway and also from
Kaghan valley passing through Babusar Pass. The mighty river Indus
passes through the Chilas valley. Foreigners may need permission to
travel in Chilas.
- Chilas: The City of Nanga Parvat (Dyamar), 1983, p 120, Ahmad
Hasan Dani - Chilás Region (Pakistan)
- See also: The Name 'Cambyses', Pakistan Archaeology, 1991, p
123, Wojciech Skalmowski, Pakistan Dept. of Archaeology &
Museums - Pakistan.
- Jettmar, Karl et al. (1985): Zwischen Gandhara und den
Seidenstrassen: Felsbilder am Karakorum Highway: Entdeckungen
deutsch-pakistanischer Expeditionen 1979-1984. 1985. Mainz am
Rhein, Philipp von Zabern.
- Jettmar. Karl (1980): Bolor & Dardistan. Karl
Jettmar. Islamabad, National Institute of Folk Heritage.
- Leitner, G. W. (1893): Dardistan in 1866, 1886 and 1893:
Being An Account of the History, Religions, Customs, Legends,
Fables and Songs of Gilgit, Chilas, Kandia (Gabrial) Yasin,
Chitral, Hunza, Nagyr and other parts of the Hindukush, as also a
supplement to the second edition of The Hunza and Nagyr
Handbook. And An Epitome of Part III of the author’s “The
Languages and Races of Dardistan.” First Reprint 1978.
Manjusri Publishing House, New Delhi.
- Rod MacNeil: The Fight at Chilas (1893). Soldiers
of the Queen (journal of the Victorian Military Society).