Field and Tuer, the Leadenhall Press : Simpkin, Marshall,
Text on page 17
UPPER BURMA. 17A
has about 1200 houses. Yenangyoung is a large town, the centre of the petroleum trade. Magw has about 3000 houses. Mengoon about 300 houses and a gigantic pagoda. Menhla is the frontier station, containing about 1000 houses. Besides the above there are many large towns and villages both along the river and in the interior.
Burmese houses are so fragile that towns quickly spring up or are deserted. When a royal whim, or the caprice of the court astrologers, dictates a change of locality for the capital, an order goes forth directing that the old city be abandoned, and commanding all loyal subjects to move into the new one. The houses are not so well put together that they cannot be easily taken to pieces, transported a few miles, and re-erected ; but the abandonment of crops in the ground, and possibly of the business connection which traders have created in a certain locality, and which may not fall in their way again, involves serious loss, and of course retards the progress of the country. The inflammability of the material of which houses are