A S. province of Afghanistan, consisting of mountains and arid plains, bounded N. by the territory of the Hezareh, N. E. by Cabool, S. E. by Sewistan, S. by Beloochistan, and W. by Seistan and Herat. The country is generally barren, but there are some fertile regions, by the rivers, where grain, tobacco, and fruits are produced. Among the wild animals are wolves, hyaenas, bears, leopards, wild asses, etc.; and among the tame are camels, mules, and most of the domestic animals of Europe. A considerable transit trade is carried on, the road between India and Persia passing through the country. Oandahar formed part of Persia, was for some time subjugated by the Mogul sovereigns of Delhi, and was again annexed to Persia by Nadir Shah. On the death of this conqueror it became a province of eastern Afghanistan. The inhabitants are mostly Mohammedans of the Sunni sect. II. The principal city of the province, in lat. 32° 37' N., Ion. 65° 20' E., 280 m. S. E. of Herat, and 275 S. W. of Cabool; pop. about 30,000. It is fortified, and a place of military and political importance.
Formerly it was the capital of all Afghanistan, but in 1774 the seat of sovereignty was transferred to Oabool. The city is well laid out, the streets are at right angles, and the four principal streets, which are very wide, meet at a circular place in the centre of the city. The town is situated near the Urghundaub, and small channels of river water run through the main streets. In 1839 it was occupied by the British, who soon abandoned it; in 1854 it was recovered by Dost Mohammed of Cabool; and in 1858 it fell into the hands of Yakub Khan of Herat.