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Title: Journal of a Visit to Constantinople and Some of the Greek Islands in the Spring and Summer of 1833
Author: Auldjo, John, -1857
Language: English
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      | Transcriber's note:                                     |
      |                                                         |
      | Turkish names seem to be spelled generally in French,   |
      | which was the Lingua Franca of the period. These have   |
      | not been corrected. The correct Turkish spellings of    |
      | some of these names are given at the end of the book.   |


"You have nothing to do, but transcribe your little red books, if they
are not rubbed out; for I conclude you have not trusted every thing to
memory, which is ten times worse than a lead pencil. Half a word fixed
on or near the spot, is worth a cart load of recollection."

GRAY's _Letters_.

Printed by A. Spottiswoode,




Author of "The Ascent of Mont Blanc,"
"Sketches of Vesuvius," Etc.

[Illustration: VIEW IN THE GULF OF CORON. [p. 235.]]

Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, Green, & Longman,




On quitting Naples, for those scenes which your pen and pencil have so
faithfully illustrated, I promised to fill my note book. I now offer you
its contents, as a small and unworthy token of my gratitude for the long
continued kindness you have shown.

Your faithful and obedient servant,


_Naples, April, 1835._


The publication of the pages of a journal in the crude and undigested
form in which they were originally composed appears so disrespectful to
the public, that it requires some explanation. They were written,
"currente calamo," among the scenes they describe; more as a record of
individual adventure, and to fix the transient impressions of the moment
for the after gratification of the author, than with any hope of
affording amusement during an idle hour, even to those who might feel an
interest in all he saw and noted.

The intense curiosity, however, which exists at present to learn even
the minutest particulars connected with Greece and Turkey, and the
possibility that some of his hurried notices might not be altogether
devoid of interest, have induced the author to submit them to the public
attention. In so doing, he has preferred giving them in their original
state, with all their defects, to moulding them into a connected
narrative; his object being not to "make a book," but to offer his
desultory remarks as they arose; to present the faint outline he
sketched upon the spot, rather than attempt to work them into finished

With some hope, therefore, of receiving indulgence from the critics,
whose asperity is rarely excited except by the overweening pretensions
of confident ignorance and self-sufficiency, he ventures on the ground
already trodden by so many distinguished men, whose works, deep in
research, beautiful in description, and valuable from their scrupulous
fidelity, have left little to glean, and rendered it a rather hazardous
task for an humble and unskilful limner to follow in their wake.

While thus disclaiming all pretensions to the possession of their
enviable talents, still, if the author should succeed in affording his
readers a few hours' pleasure from the perusal of his Journal, or enable
any one to re-picture scenes he may himself have visited, the principal
object of its publication will have been attained.

_Naples, April, 1835._


Departure of H.M.S. Actæon with the British Embassy to
  Constantinople                                          1

Island of Capri. Moonlight Scene                          3

My first Night at Sea                                     4

Sunday on Board                                           5

Schoolmaster of the Actæon. Muster of the Crew            6

Stromboli. Somma. Vesuvius                                7

Scylla and Charybdis. Homer                               8

The Faro. Messina. Preparations to land                   9

Sea-sickness. A Host of Grievances                       10

Man overboard. Life                                      11

Cerigo. Taygetus                                         12

Piping up the Watch. Pursers Bantam                      13

Nauplia de Malvoisie                                     14

Classic Reminiscences. Argos                             15

Sharks. Greek Costume                                    16

Character of King Otho                                   17

Hydra. Egina. Poros. Russian Fleet                       19

Beautiful Landscape. Gulf of Salamis                     20

Athens. The Piræus. Olive Grove                          21

English Residents at Athens                              22

Visit to the Acropolis. Death of the Chieftain Ulysses   23

Insolence of the Turks                                   24

Grave of Tweddel. Byron's Grave                          25

Armenian Missionaries. Temple of Theseus                 26

Metropolis of modern Greece                              27

Modern Improvements. Sir P. Malcolm                      28

Value of Land. Speculators Plain of Troy. Fidelity of
  Sir W. Gell's Map                                      30

Sources of the Scamander. The Golden Xanthus             31

Tombs of Hector and Paris. Bounarbashi                   32

The Simois. Rural Excursion. Segean Promontory.
  Tombs of Achilles and Patroclus                        33

Passage of the Dardanelles. Influenza                    34

Present to the Ambassador. French Fleet                  35

Feast of the Bairam. Oriental Splendour                  36

Sestos. Turkish Colonel. Castles of the Dardanelles      37

Beautiful Scene. Turkish Salute                          38

First View of Constantinople. The Seven Towers           39

The Pasha's Gate. The Slaves' Gate                       40

Sultanas. Golden Horn. Beauties of Stamboul              41

Pera. Scutari. Approach of the Actæon to her Anchorage   42

Turkish Fleet. Size and Condition of the Ships           43

Castle of the Janissaries. Royal Kiosk. Turkish Houses   44

Unwelcome Visitation. Giants' Mountain. Russian Camp.
  Saluting the Russian Fleet                             45

Jealousy and Remonstrance of the Russian Admiral.
  French and English Embassies                           46

Russian Military Music. Plague. Orange and Jasmine
  Bowers                                                 47

The Caique. Turkish Boatmen                              48

Paras. Splendid Fountain. Tophana                        49

Pera. Destructive Fire. Guiseppino Vitali                50

Mr. Cartwright, British Consul. A Sail upon the
  Bosphorus                                              51

Funeral of a Russian Soldier                             52

Landing of the British Ambassador                        53

Greek and Armenian Women. Visit to the Bazaars           54

Public Promenades. Oriental Perfumes                     56

Pipe-stick Bazaar. Amber Mouth-pieces                    57

Value of the Turkish Pipe                                58

Salonica Tobacco. The Nargile                            59

Coffee Houses. Shoe Bazaar                               60

Jewellery. Broussa Silks                                 61

Close of the Bazaars. Funeral of the Sultan's
  Physician                                              62

Lord Ponsonby's Audience                                 63

His Reception. Count Orloff                              64

Admiral Roussin. Naval Punishments                       65

Cricket. Turkish Fleet                                   66

Cabobs. Rapacity of the Sultan. "Valley of the
  Sweet Waters"                                          67

Naval Arsenal. Cemeteries                                68

Palace. Turkish Horses                                   69

Interesting Scene. Beautiful Greek                       70

The Erraba. Turkish Ladies                               71

Dancing Dervishes                                        73

Greek Bookseller                                         76

Mosque of Solimanie                                      77

Seraskier's Tower. Conflagrations                        78

View of Constantinople. Hermitage on Vesuvius.
  Burnt Pillar                                           79

Hippodrome                                               80

The Author in danger of arrest. Anecdote. St. Sophia     81

Visit to the Seraglio. Effects of a Golden Key           82

Coffee Shop in a Plane-tree. Funeral Pomp                83

Costume. Mustapha the Scent Dealer. Beed Caimac.
  Mahalabé                                               84

Turkish Printing Office. Anecdote of a Sultana           85

Ibrahim Pasha. Affront offered to the Captain of
  the Actæon                                             87

Insolence of the Russians. Military Punishments          88

Sultan's Valley. Buyukdere. Aqueduct                     89

Cossack Horses. Russians hated by the Turks              90

Horn Bands. Beautiful Airs                               91

Fondness of the Turks for Champagne. A Venetian Story    92

College of Pages. Christian Burying-ground               93

Sultan's Visit to the Mosque                             94

Politeness of a Turkish Officer. The successful Shot     95

Namik Pasha. Count Orloff and the Sultan                 96

The Procession. Turkish Horses. Appearance and
  Dress of the Grand Signior                             97

His Bacchanalian Propensities. Laughable Anecdote        98

New Regulation Soldier                                   99

Palace of the British Embassy                           100

Scene in the Arm Bazaar                                 101

George Robins. Curious Weapons. Damascus Blades.
  Turkish Merchants                                     102

Swords of Khorassan. Their Temper                       103

Jew Brokers. Actæon                                     104

Humours of a Turkish Auction                            105

Slave Market                                            106

A Georgian Beauty. Scarcity of white Slaves             108

Price of a Female Slave. Turkish Confectionary          109

Armenian Visiteos. Residence of an Armenian Gentleman   110

Oriental Costume                                        111

Turks. Armenians. Greeks                                112

Jew Interpreters. Flattering Compliment to the English
  Character                                             113

Oriental Politeness. Portraits                          114

Decrease of Fanaticism. Persian Silk. St. John's Egypt  115

Cashmere Shawls. Angora Shalée. Ladies' Dresses         116

Hummums                                                 117

Eastern Story-teller                                    121

Matthews at Constantinople. Turkish Politeness.
  Description of an "At Home" in Stamboul               122

Naval Banquet                                           128

Seven Towers                                            131

Tomb of Ali Pasha                                       134

Russian Insolence                                       136

Visit to Ibrahim Pasha                                  137

Violent Conduct of the Russians to an English
  Gentleman                                             138

Laughable Anecdote of a Turk                            139

Beautiful Scene. Contrasted Manners of the Turks
  and Greeks                                            141

The Muezzin                                             144

Madame Mauvromati. The Plague                           146

Massacre of the Greeks                                  147

Anecdote of the Sultan                                  148

Neapolitan Steam-boat. English Travellers               151

Jewish Musician. Merry Greeks                           152

Greek Lady. Elegant Costume                             153

Affability of the Turkish Females                       156

The Pilot of the Actæon and the Seraskier               157

Foreign Visitors                                        159

Oriental Beauty                                         160

The Ottoman Empire. Lord Grey                           162

Morning Prayer. The Muezzin                             163

Sunrise. Power of Religion on the Heart                 164

Russian Camp. Lady Ponsonby                             165

Russian Insolence to an English Party                   166

Namik Pasha. Tahir Pasha                                167

Excursion on the Black Sea. Beauties of the Seraglio    168

The Symplegades                                         169

Colour of the Black Sea. Experiment the Test of Truth   170

Character of the Russians by a Turkish Innkeeper        171

Grand Review. Splendid Staff                            172

Giant's Mountain                                        174

Extensive Prospects. Mt. Olympus                        175

Prince Butera and the Sultan                            177

Detention of the Steamer. Illiberal Conduct of the
  Prince                                                178

Royal Country Seat                                      180

Insecurity of Property. The Bowstring                   181

Author's Preparations to Depart. H. M. Ship Actæon.
  Lord Ponsonby                                         182

Visit to the Mosques. St. Sophia                        183

Fate of Constantinople. Tribute of Respect to
  Lord Ponsonby                                         189

Armenian Painter. Poetical Description
  of Constantinople                                     190

My fellow-Passengers                                    192

Marble Quarries. Isle of Marmora                        193

Greek Deputation. Anecdote                              194

Pleasant Dormitory. Extraordinary Transformation        196

British Fleet. Gulf of Smyrna                           199

French Squadron. King of Greece                         200

Smyrna. Excessive Heat                                  201

Departure for Syra                                      202

Accident. Island of Scio                                203

Island of Tinos. Quarantine                             204

Landing of the King. Ship Launch                        206

Festival of St. John the Baptist                        208

Syra. Bishop's Palace                                   209

Ladies of Mycone. Costume                               210

Delos. Vulgar Tourists                                  211

Modern Antique                                          213

Naxos. Paros. Beautiful Anchorage                       214

Visit to Antiparos                                      215

Marine Prospects. Spotico                               216

Entrance to the Cavern                                  217

Perilous Descent                                        218

Melodramatic Scene                                      219

Description by a Naval Officer. Magnificent Passage     224

Excessive Terror. Disappearance of the Guides           226

Splendid Transition                                     227

Dimensions of the Grotto                                228

Terrified Frenchman. Our Return                         229

A Hint to the Ladies. Ludicrous Scene                   231

Port of Milo                                            232

Warlike Mountaineers                                    233

Anecdote                                                234

Parting of the Royal Brothers                           235

Cerigo. Gulf of Coron. Zante                            236

Distant View of Etna. Valetta                           238

Lazzaretto. Days of Quarrantine                         240

The Parlatorio                                          241

Persian Carpets. The Mantilla. Maltese Women            242

Medical Examination. Steamer from Corfu                 243

Valetta. Maltese Gazette                                244

Garrison of Malta. Strange Conduct of the Prince        245

Lady Briggs's Ball. Alicata                             246

Miserable State of Sicily. Girgenti                     247

Temple of Hercules. Concord                             248

Reflections.   Coliseum. The Parthenon                  249

Temple of Giants. Galley Slaves. Custom-house           250

Marsala. Mazzara. Vintage                               251

Palermo. Orange and Lemon Groves                        252

Duchess de Berri                                        253

Scene on Board                                          254

Capri. Conclusion                                       256


List of the Turkish Fleet in the Bosphorus, and of
  Mohammed Ali's Navy                                   257

State of the Thermometer at Constantinople              258

Note to page 24                                         259


[Sidenote: DEPARTURE OF THE ACTÆON.] _Saturday, 6th April, 1833._--Well!
All seems at length arranged, and the oft postponed departure of H. M.
S. Actæon for Constantinople, will probably take place this evening. But
is there no chance of a further detention? Yes; and many a palpitating
heart watches anxiously the state of the heavens.

The morning had been dark and stormy, and heavy vapours rolled along
from the north: about noon, however, the weather brightened; yet an
occasional cloud, passing over and discharging its liquid contents on
the lovely Naples, afforded some expectation that the evening might
prove unfavourable. If there were heaving bosoms on shore, there were
responding hearts on board; where there were few, indeed, who did not
feel some pang at bidding the syren city farewell.

The St. Lucia was thronged with numerous groups of pedestrians, and a
long line of carriages, with "weeping beauty filled,"--all manifesting a
deep interest in the scene. Sailors have generous hearts, which, like
wax, are soon warmed, and easily impressed; but as easily the image may
be effaced. Thus ladies assert, that blue jackets

  "In every port a true love find."

Reflections akin to these, probably, may have tortured more than one of
the fair spectators; and mamma, perhaps, considered it extremely
mortifying that an opportunity was not given to _land_ the prize, as
well as _hook_ it; and that sailors, like jacks, were exceedingly
difficult to catch.

Boats pass rapidly to and from the ship;--the yards are manned; the
ambassador's flag flies at the main; and as the smoke from the salute
cleared away, the shore, with its precious and weeping burthen, was seen
fast receding from the sight. The Actæon had actually sailed; and the
white handkerchiefs, with the ivory arms that waved them, gradually
became lost to the view, till distance mingled the entire scene into one
grey mass, and

  "All was mist, and Naples seen no more."

Such were the transactions that marked the 6th of April, 1833, when I
became one of the ship's company, and received an honourable place in
her log.

[Sidenote: ISLAND OF CAPRI.] We were compelled to pass close under
Capri[1], and its bold perpendicular cliffs towered magnificently above
us, casting a deep shadow over the vessel as she sailed along. There was
little wind outside the isle, and we were nearly becalmed; but this
delay was amply compensated by the extreme beauty of the night. The
brilliant moon, shining with far greater lustre than I ever remember to
have witnessed, during the height of summer, in less favoured climes,
lighted up with its silver beams the whole of that beautiful coast
extending along the bay of Salerno, from Amalfi to Palinuro. Long did I
remain upon deck, gazing on

              "Heaven's ebon vault,
  Studded with stars unutterably bright;
  Through which the moon's unclouded grandeur rolls."

[Sidenote: MY FIRST NIGHT AT SEA.] But at length, overcome by weariness,
I hastened to my cot.--My cot! how shall I describe thee? thou oblong,
narrow, swinging thing! rest still a while, nor fly me thus each time I
essay to get within thy narrow precincts. Oh! for a chair, a stool, a
rope; or have they purposely swung thee so high? hadst thou been o'er a
gun, indeed, one might have scaled thee by the breech. So! In at last;
yet, with that eternal sentinel walking his rounds within a few paces of
my ear, how is it possible to sleep? Exhausted, however, by the novelty
and excitement of the past day, at length wearied nature asserted her
rights; and I had just begun to sink into a refreshing slumber, when
"Quarter," rang in my ears: again I start; ducks cackle, geese scream,
pigs grunt, cocks crow, men bawl; all the horrors of the incantation
scene in Der Freyschütz would seem to accompany that same striking of
the bells.

  "A ship is a thing you never can sleep quiet in,"

says an old song; and most feelingly did I subscribe to the veracious
assertion: at length, towards morning, by dint, I think, of conning over
that very line, I once more fell asleep.

But my slumbers were of short duration, for with daylight came the
order, "Wash decks." Then began slushing and swabbing, and bumping my
cot. All the live stock, too, were again in motion, and in fact, I soon
perceived it would be better at once to turn out. This was neither easy
nor agreeable, the deck being drenched with wet. However, I made up for
my night's restlessness by a hearty breakfast, and appeared on the
quarter-deck with a face exhibiting no symptoms of squeamishness. We are
making for Stromboli, which was visible in the horizon.

[Sidenote: SUNDAY ON BOARD.] _Sunday, 7th._--This morning, after the
crew had appeared at quarters,--that is, every man to his station,--the
bell rang for divine service, and all the chairs and benches above and
below, were put in requisition. The captain then read prayers on the
main deck, in a manner at once solemn and impressive. It may here be
remarked, that, when the ship carries out an ambassador, the youngsters
are exempt from school duties, and their holidays on the present
occasion are likely to be of considerable duration. The schoolmaster of
the Actæon is a Scotchman, and his office cannot be an enviable one, if
half the tricks in store for him be ever put in practice; while the fact
of his hammock being swung close alongside those of his pupils, by no
means diminishes the facility of their execution. To-day being Sunday,
we dined at three o'clock; and our band, consisting of a drummer and
amateur fifer, played us to table with the well-known enlivening air of
"The roast beef of old England."

[Sidenote: MUSTER OF THE CREW.] In the evening we had a general muster,
and I am confident very few ships ever possessed a finer company than
the Actæon. Really it was a gallant sight to witness this assemblage of
stout, able, daring fellows, equipped with their cutlasses and boarding
pikes. Looking at them, one no longer felt surprised at the vast naval
superiority which Great Britain has ever maintained in her contests with
foreign nations. The boatswain's mates, and the quartermasters, are
really handsome men, weatherbeaten and bold. Williams, one of the
latter, seems a most eccentric character. He is married, and constantly
receives letters from his absent rib: these, however, he never takes the
trouble to open, but keeps them all neatly tied up. On his return, he
says, she can read them to him, all of a lump!

[Sidenote: STROMBOLI.] We are now close to Stromboli, which appears to
be the remaining half of a large conical crater; the semicircle which is
lost, having fallen away into the sea. There is a small cone in the very
centre, from which the explosions take place. They were but slight on
the present occasion; and two small apertures emitted a continual cloud
of white vapour. The upper part of the old crater consists of layers of
rock rising regularly one above the other; and the whole surface much
resembles that of Somma.[2] The atmosphere was so clear that the island
appeared quite close to us, and I could scarcely credit the master when
he asserted it was full fifteen miles distant.

My cot being moved forward, I am infinitely more comfortable, having now
only the geese to disturb me. The vessel continued beating to windward
till mid-day, when she approached the Faro; and the breeze
strengthening, we had every prospect of clearing it.

[Sidenote: SCYLLA AND CHARYBDIS.] Scylla now appeared in view,--the
bold, rocky, and much dreaded Scylla,--

            "Where sing the syren maids,
  Uttering such dulcet and harmonious sounds,
  That raptured mortals cannot hear, and live."

    LYCOPHRON. _Cassandra._

It exhibits itself in the form of a grey perpendicular cliff; and as we
sailed by, the town appeared behind it, built on the face of a steep
slope, of the same colour as the surrounding mass. This is a dangerous
lee shore for a speranaro, but not much to be dreaded by a skilful
seaman. However, we were not gratified with the sight of any of those
monsters with which the imaginations of classic poets have peopled this
celebrated spot; we heard no barkings, nor did the waves even roar as
they lashed its famous rocks. Out of one scrape, into another!--

  "Close by, a rock of less tremendous height
   Breaks the wild waves, and forms a dangerous strait:
   Full on its crown a fig's green branches rise,
   And shoot a leafy forest to the skies;
   Beneath, Charybdis holds her boisterous reign,
   Midst roaring whirlpools, and absorbs the main.
   Thrice in her gulphs the boiling seas subside;
   Thrice in dire thunders she refunds the tide.
   Oh! if thy vessel plough the direful waves,
   When seas, retreating, roar within her caves,
   Ye perish all! though he who rules the main
   Lend his strong aid, his aid he lends in vain."

    _Odyssey_, B. 12.

[Sidenote: PREPARATIONS TO LAND.] We were now close upon Charybdis,
where the water is shallow, and the low sands exceedingly dangerous, as
at times it is difficult to discern them. A most wretched village, and a
miserable lighthouse, represent this terror of the ancient Greek
mariners. A few Indian figs and stunted olive trees are almost the only
symptoms of vegetation discernible; and two fat priests, who were
basking in the sun, upon the sand, seemed the only inhabitants.

The coast on either side the Faro is very beautiful; and the land,
judging from the number of houses, villages, and appearance of general
cultivation, must be fertile. The wind having changed, we approached
Messina rapidly, gallantly nearing it, with all sail set. The heavens
threatened bad weather; and therefore the ambassador, tempted by the
neat and clean appearance of the town, resolved to go ashore. Every
preparation was made accordingly; the chain cable was clear, and the men
at the best bower-anchor; when, it being considered injudicious to lose
so fair a breeze, we again set sail, to the disappointment of most
persons on board; and Messina, with all its gay attractions, was soon
far astern. The wind, though fair, was rising into a gale as we got into
the open sea off Spartivento, and the ship rolled terribly. Dined to-day
with the captain, and found some difficulty in stowing away his good
fare, but got creditably through, until the wine began to circulate at
the dessert, when I was compelled to make a precipitate retreat, and
arrived at the gangway only just in time to save the honour of the
quarter-deck. However, I soon righted again, and at night took my grog
kindly in the _pighole_; which was considered no bad sign for an
incipient tar.

[Sidenote: SEA SICKNESS.] The following morning I was awakened at
daylight by a host of grievances,--a scraping above and a scraping
below, that set all my nerves in commotion. Oh! that some other means
could be devised for cleaning decks, than that of holy stoning them! It
roused me from a pleasant slumber, to the horrid consciousness of the
ship's pitching and rolling to such a degree that I was unable to raise
my head from the pillow. Then the alarm I was in, lest I should be
compelled to get up, and have my cot stowed away before eight o'clock.
Yet it was some consolation to know that we were scudding across the
Adriatic at the tremendous rate of ten, and sometimes eleven, knots an
hour; so that, if we continue to proceed thus rapidly much longer, the
voyage will soon be at an end. I was allowed to swing in my cot all day,
and partook of a good dinner into the bargain, which Master Thew, one of
the ship's boys, with whom I had become a great favourite, brought and
forced me to partake of. Got up in the evening for half an hour, and
showed on deck. What a splendid sight! The ship, with comparatively very
little canvas set, majestically ploughed her course through the mighty
billows, that seemed vainly endeavouring to arrest her career; though,
from the way in which she rolled, she must occasionally have been so
unpolite as to display her naked keel to the heavens.

[Sidenote: MAN OVERBOARD.] The mountains around Navarino are in sight:
'tis the land of Arcadia. The gale still continues, the wind whistles
shrilly through the rigging, and the sea roars and tosses us about.
Perceiving a great stir on deck, I sang out to inquire the cause: "A man
overboard," was the reply. I made instant preparations to hasten up, in
the hope of seeing him rescued. The cutter and gig were down, and the
life-buoy out, in an instant, but, poor fellow! he could not swim; and,
though he rose near the buoy, he had not strength to seize it; and after
struggling for a few moments, now deep in a trough of the sea, now
mounted aloft on the summit of the waves, he sank to rise no more. The
swell was so tremendous, that the boats with difficulty reached the
buoy; and some fears were entertained lest they should be unable to live
in such a sea. After considerable suspense, they returned in safety to
the ship, and we proceeded in our rapid course, as if nothing
extraordinary had happened. The life-buoy is a most admirable invention.
It hangs astern the tafrail, and is dropped by pulling a trigger, which
is always done by the person next at hand on the occurrence of an
accident. If it should happen at night, a similar contrivance fires a
train, which lights a lamp in the buoy; and the poor drowning man
discerns, in an instant, the means of preserving his life. The gale
increasing from the N.W., the storm sails were set; but, by noon, we
neared the coast, and ran into the bay of Servia, where we found shelter
and calm water. The coast is extremely bold, but very barren.

[Sidenote: THE LIFE-BUOY.--CERIGO.] _Thursday, 11th._--At eight o'clock
A.M. we were sailing, with a gentle breeze, between the island of Cerigo
and the mainland. The snow-capped mountain of Taygetus rose behind the
lofty coast in the extreme distance. Cerigo is also very barren: I could
perceive very little appearance of cultivation. There are two villages
in the upper part of the island; and there is another, considerably
larger, on the south side. Two companies of British soldiers, with a
resident, are stationed here, and a state of perfect banishment it must
prove, the only amusement being field sports, and the island is by no
means well stocked with game. Cerigo was famous, in antiquity, for the
worship of Venus; and the goddess of beauty rose from the sea somewhere
near the spot where we now are. After getting out of the strait, and
weathering Cape St. Angelo, the sea again became rough, and we beat
about the point all day, much to my regret, for the quiet experienced in
the bay of Servia was quite delightful, after the tossing boisterous
weather we had in the Adriatic. A Greek steamer passed us in the course
of the day, but did not come within hail.

[Sidenote: PIPING UP THE WATCH.] Among the various grievances which
nightly disturb my rest, the piping up of the different watches must not
be omitted. A long shrill whistle first rouses me, followed by the
hoarse cry of "All the starboard watch." Another similar prelude, is the
forerunner of "Hands to shorten sail," or, "Watch make sail:" and as if
each of these was not in itself sufficient to "murder sleep," the
purser's bantam cock invariably responds with a long loud crow. From
the first, I have vowed the death of that hero; but he is so great a
favourite among the crew, that I can tempt no one to be his executioner.
However, the captain's steward has been argued into the propriety of
killing the old gander, which is a great victory. With it I am fain to
be content for the present; and the "Purser's Tom" must still crow on in
a solo, though the other has ceased to sing second.

[Sidenote: NAUPLIA DI MALVOISIE.] This is a most lovely morning; a light
breeze wafts us up the gulf of Napoli, while far on the eastern horizon,
rise the islands of Spezzia and Hydra; and further to the south, that of
Kaimena. We are now off the singular looking town of Nauplia di
Malvoisie, built on a square island, having two platforms, each
resembling a gigantic stair. The lower town is walled on three sides
only, as the perpendicular face of the cliff renders any defence
unnecessary on that side; and on the summit of the precipice stands the
upper town and castle. The rock is of a red colour, and the whole has a
very picturesque appearance. A narrow isthmus and a lofty bridge connect
the island with the adjacent continent. The mountains are barren; but
the valleys appeared green and beautiful.

[Sidenote: CLASSIC REMINISCENCES.] Early the following morning, we
anchored off Nauplia di Romania, and were saluted by H. M. S. Barham, a
French store-ship, and two Russian brigs. From the delay occasioned by
the minister's coming on board, and by visits from the authorities and
captains of the men of war, it was late ere we got on shore. I had
therefore time to gaze on the beautiful panorama around, embracing the
land of Argos, once so celebrated, and still associated with the
school-boy's earliest recollections. In the distance, on a pointed
hill, stands its ruined city. Before me, on the plain, I beheld all that
remained of Tirynth; in the mountains stood Mycenæ; and to the north,
Epidauras. How many interesting fictions are connected with these
scenes! Here Hercules was born and passed his youthful days; and here,
too, he performed many of his most illustrious labours; here stood the
brazen tower of the lovely Danäe; here Perseus reigned; here the fifty
daughters of Danäus murdered their new-married husbands in a single
night; here Juno was born; and in Argos, too, Agamemnon reigned. On the
left of my position, looking towards the sea, rises a lofty sombre
cliff, whence a chain of sloping rocks extend to the fortress above
Nauplia, the castellated Palamide. Within its dungeons, Grievas and
several other rebels, with the pirates lately taken, are now confined.
At the base of the Palamide, rises a second hill, on which is built the
town, extending down to the water's edge. I am told there are some
remains of ancient fortifications on the side next to the citadel, but I
could discover none that boasted of very remote antiquity. Outside the
town, is a public walk beautifully embowered in trees.

[Sidenote: SHARKS.--NAUPLIA.] Several sharks made their appearance round
the Barham, and sometimes approached our vessel. As they sailed rapidly
up and down, their sharp serrated fins rising above the surface of the
calm unruffled waves, reminded me of the circular saw at Portsmouth
dockyard, working its way through some vast beam of timber, verging
neither to right or left, but keeping on its steady course heedless of
all impediments. The rifles were quickly in requisition, and several of
the officers of the Barham repeatedly shot at them, but did not manage
to boat one.

Went on shore, and visited the modern town of Nauplia; where I observed
that many respectable houses have been recently erected, several good
shops opened, and the streets are much cleaner than might be expected.
Its old palace was an insignificant building, but they are adding
considerably to it. The Greeks being forbidden to carry arms, their
costume is less picturesque than formerly; but, on some of the
noble-looking figures I saw, it still appeared handsome and becoming.
None of Græcia's beauteous daughters were visible to-day, all the women
being invariably ugly, and by no means well dressed. To-morrow is a
_festa_, when perhaps I shall have more reason to admire them.

[Sidenote: CHARACTER OF KING OTHO.]_Sunday, 14th._--Walked towards
Argos, and took a sketch of the bay, but observed no pretty faces, and
very few handsome dresses either native or foreign. The Bavarian troops
are mean-looking men, and their light blue uniform is far from imposing.
On my return I saw the king walk in procession to church. The Greeks, no
doubt, dislike his religion, they being much more intolerant towards
Roman Catholics than the Protestants are; yet, as he visits the churches
on all _festás_, they do not openly murmur. His personal appearance
certainly wants dignity, and his Tartar features appear to great
disadvantage when contrasted with those of true Grecian mould, by which
he is surrounded. However, his prepossessing manners and perfect
urbanity, in some measure compensate for these personal defects; and,
upon the whole, the people appear well pleased and contented with their
youthful monarch. It is said the palikari, or soldiers of the late
governments, do not unite themselves with the regular army which is
forming, so readily as was expected, and that recourse must again be had
to Bavarian troops to keep the country in a state of subjection, and
protect the industrious. Our Greek pilot (he was once a pirate), with a
large party of his friends, met us in the town. We enquired how they
liked their king: their reply was, they had no alternative, since the
allies had sent him; but added, that they were ready to treat him as
they had previously done Capo d'Istrias, should he attempt any thing
against their liberties.

The king mixes a good deal with his new subjects; he rides out every day
without guards, and almost unattended; and strolls upon the public
promenade at the hours when the _beau monde_ frequent it. His presence,
however, excites little attention; and, except by his uniform, the star
upon his breast, and the few aides-de-camp who attend him, he would
hardly be recognised by a stranger.

[Sidenote: HYDRA.--EGINA]. _Monday, 15th._--The ambassador having
received despatches from Constantinople, announcing the arrival of
Russian troops, we were unexpectedly compelled to set sail again
immediately, and our vessel passed between the island of Spezzia and the
main land this morning with a fair wind. The town is pretty, the houses
being detached, and displaying an appearance of great neatness.
Spezzia, from its exceedingly commodious harbour, has always engrossed
much of the carrying trade to and from the continent of Greece; and the
inhabitants are, consequently, wealthy. In the afternoon we coasted
along the island of Hydra, which presents nothing but lofty barren
cliffs, until you arrive close to the town that is built round the
crater of an extinct volcano, the centre of which forms the harbour.
Owing to the extreme depth of the water, there is no anchorage, and all
craft are moored to the wharfs. The town very much resembles Amalfi, and
is protected by two forts, one of which mounts twelve, and the other
sixteen, guns. From the proximity of either shore, the entrance to the
harbour is singularly beautiful; and the surrounding country, though
barren, is very bold and picturesque. Passing Poros in the distance, we
now entered the Gulf of Egina, the prospect hourly increasing in
richness and beauty. The Russian fleet lay at anchor in Poros, and we
plainly descried the admiral's flag flying on shore. In the evening we

  "Egina's beauteous isle,"

and could distinguish, on the summit of a hill, the ruins of its temple,
of which there are, I believe, twenty-three columns still remaining
up-right. It is impossible for the imagination to conceive any landscape
more lovely than the one now before us. The wooded isle,--the ruined
temple, rising above the dense masses of foliage,--Athens and its
Acropolis, just distinguishable in the distance,--Pentelicus and
Hymettus ranging behind it, and, farther to the right, Cape Colonna. The
sky was clear and beautifully blue, and a light breeze wafted us slowly
over the rippling waves. There was not the slightest swell; all was
calm, tranquil, and serene. Then, when the sun sunk behind Morea's
hills, and shed a flood of gorgeous light over the whole landscape, it
produced a picture, the loveliness of which will for ever remain
impressed upon my memory.

[Sidenote: GULF OF SALAMIS.] _Tuesday, 16th._--The gulf, or bay, of
Salamis, into which we were now sailing, is a deep inlet, surrounded by
an amphitheatre of low semicircular hills. Here the army of Xerxes was
posted; and the highest of these knolls is still pointed out as the spot
where stood the golden throne of the Persian monarch, when he looked
upon that battle which so humbled his pride.

  "A king sat on the rocky brow
    Which looks o'er sea-born Salamis;
  And ships, by thousands, lay below,
    And men in nations:--all were his.
  He counted them at break of day,
  And when the sun set, where were they?"

[Sidenote: ATHENS.] Again weighing anchor, in a quarter of an hour we
entered Porto Leone,--the ancient Piræus; which, though deep enough to
float a seventy-four, is so very narrow at the entrance, that there is
but sufficient space for a vessel to pass, with a few feet on either
side to spare. We regretted the orders were, to be on board at night,
and that we should sail again at daylight. The ambassador landed under a
salute; but I waved this ceremony, and hastened ashore with a party of
officers and youngsters. We walked towards Athens, along the old road,
and struck into the olive grove, very little of which now remains, it
having been destroyed by both Greek and Turk. At length the Acropolis
burst upon our anxious view; and, as we toiled up the hill of the
Areopagus, the Temple of Theseus presented itself. Passing along the
miserable collection of mud and stones, here dignified with the name of
a wall, we entered this renowned city, once the seat of civilization and
the arts, but which, at present, consists of little more than an
assemblage of wretched hovels, the principal buildings having been
nearly all destroyed. Near the gate, one good house has been rebuilt;
and, a little farther on, a still larger mansion on speculation.
[Sidenote: ENGLISH RESIDENTS AT ATHENS.]This being a holyday, the bazaar
was closed, and after examining the remains of a building of Corinthian
architecture, supposed to have been Adrian's Library, we passed on to
the residence of Mr. Bell, an English gentleman, who has lately bought
property near Athens, where he resides, in a building which has suffered
less than many others. Mr. Finlay, who has lived upwards of ten years
among the Greeks, also possesses large property in and about Athens.
This gentleman undertook to be our cicerone, and we proceeded to the
hotel in search of the Bavarian commandant, from whom it is necessary to
obtain an order for admission, before we could visit the interior of the
Acropolis. On reaching the hotel, which, by the by, is a most excellent
and commodious house, we found the colonel at dinner, and the necessary
permission was immediately granted. The Acropolis had only been
surrendered to the new dynasty on Sunday last; and, had we arrived one
week earlier, we should have seen the crescent still towering over this
"abode of the Gods," instead of the Greek cross, by which it has been

[Sidenote: DEATH OF THE CHIEFTAIN ULYSSES.] Passing the ruins of the
Temple of Victory, _involucris Victoria_[3], we soon arrived at the gate
of the fortress, and found the ambassador and Lady Ponsonby, with the
captain of the Actæon, and other persons, endeavouring to gain
admission, which was resolutely refused by the Bavarian guard. Luckily
my order sufficed for us all; and we hurried up,--a motley group of
officers, sailors, Greeks, donkeys, horses, and idlers,--shouting,
laughing, and dissipating all the charm of the visit and the sanctity of
the spot. I therefore detached myself from the party as soon as
possible; and, in company with Mr. Finlay, endeavoured to pay that
attention to the wonders of the place, which I could not otherwise have
done. From the lofty tower erected by the Venetians, the brave chieftain
Ulysses was thrown down, and dashed to pieces. He was confined there;
and though his keepers assert that he met his death from the breaking of
a rope, by which he attempted to escape, there is little doubt he was
cast from the giddy height by design. The propylæa or vestibule is
nearly destroyed, and buried in ruins; but the columns, still extant,
are exceedingly beautiful: and the stone, which formed the architrave of
the door, is of an enormous size, but it is cracked in the centre. Hence
we proceeded to the Erechtheon, whose southern portico is still
supported by five caryatides, the sixth having been thrown down.
[Sidenote: INSOLENCE OF THE TURKS.] The neighbouring temple, which was
reserved as a harem for the women, whilst Athens was in possession of
the Turks, suddenly fell in, and crushed the whole of its unfortunate
occupants to death. In the centre of the temple of Minerva stands a
mosque, which is at present occupied as a barrack by the Bavarian
troops. Whenever the Osmanlis take possession of a Greek village, they
invariably ride into its Christian church, and endeavour to force their
horses to defile the altar. By way of retaliation, when their mosque was
delivered up last Sunday, certain Englishmen imitated their example. As
may be readily supposed, this incensed the Turks to a great degree; but,
like the conquered Christians, they were compelled to submit.

It were a needless task to expatiate on the beauty of this temple, with
its noble columns, and its magnificent metopes; for the best still
remain, where Lord Elgin could not reach them. The prospect from the
summit of the building, whither I mounted to inspect these interesting
relics, is most splendid; but then,

  "Where'er we tread, 'tis haunted, holy ground;
   No earth of thine is lost in vulgar mould;
   But one vast realm of wonder spreads around,
   And all the muse's tales seem truly told;
   Till the sense aches with gazing, to behold
   The scenes our earliest dreams have dwelt upon."

[Sidenote: GRAVE OF TWEDDEL.] We next visited what is called
Demosthenes's Lantern, situated close to a ruined house, formerly the
Franciscan convent. Mr. Finlay and some others have cleared away the
rubbish and masses of fallen masonry from about the Lantern: they have
also dug a ditch around it, to prevent the devastation committed by
visitors who attempt to break and carry away the ornaments: they have
not yet learnt

  "To pass in peace along the magic waste;
   To spare its relics:--let no busy hand
   Deface the scenes, already how defaced!"

The Temple of Theseus, one of the most perfect existing specimens of
ancient architecture, is an admirable combination of lightness and
solidity. Neither time, war, nor the hand of man, often a more ruthless
destroyer than either, has yet invaded the sanctity of this splendid
relic of Grecian art. The bodies of the unfortunate Tweddel, and of a
person named Watson, are buried within its precincts; and it struck me,
at the moment, that the remains of Byron might here have found an
appropriate resting-place.

[Sidenote: AMERICAN MISSIONARIES.] Having finished the round of
antiquities, we proceeded to Mr. Finlay's house, a very comfortable
mansion; in which he has collected some interesting relics of antiquity,
and among them, many very curious inscriptions. In this neighbourhood is
a large house built by the American missionaries, who have a school of
between 200 and 300 children, and do much good. The pupils follow the
religion of their parents, whether Greek or Turk; the missionary
confining his exertions to instructing them in reading, writing, and
some mechanical art, as well as in their duties to their parents and the
state. We returned to the hotel, and had an excellent dinner; with an
ample supply of good wine and English porter, although there were thirty
individuals present. The charges, too, were moderate; there was, of
course, a little attempt at imposition, _à la Grecque_; but that matter
was quickly arranged. Before we left the town it was quite dark, and on
passing the Temple of Theseus, it was then illuminated by the glare of a
large fire, round which a party of Greeks were dancing: it looked even
more beautiful than by daylight. On reaching the vessel, I retired to
my cot, and endeavoured to recall the splendid objects of the day's
ramble. But a very confused and imperfect representation remained, like
the recollection of a dream, of which some few prominent points had
alone been remembered.

[Sidenote: METROPOLIS OF MODERN GREECE.] It is not improbable that
Athens may be selected as the seat of government: this choice, however,
will arise less from the advantages of position, than from the
associations connected with its former history. Corinth is infinitely
more central; and Nauplia, from the excellence of its harbour, and the
facility of communication with the principal towns and with the isles,
would be a desirable city for that purpose. With this latter, the
government ought to be satisfied; and it is hardly to be conceived that
the king longs for fine palaces, and his ministers for superb hotels, in
the present depressed state of the country. Should they leave Nauplia,
and migrate to Athens, one half of the revenue will be expended in
building, if the plans which have been sketched out for the new town are
adhered to. One of these, proposes the Piræus as the port, and that the
necessary warehouses, counting-houses, docks, &c. shall be erected
there; and from thence, a fine macadamised road is to lead to the city.
There, palaces, streets, public buildings are to be built, and walks and
gardens laid out. With this arrangement, all the plans, except one,
coincide; but they differ as to the exact site which the city ought to
occupy. [Sidenote: MODERN IMPROVEMENTS.] One suggests that the palace
and the principal buildings shall be outside the present town; and that
a large and broad street should extend from the temple of Theseus to
these modern improvements. I believe this is Gropuis's plan, who has
purchased all the property in the suburbs. Another proposes that the
palace shall be built on the side of the Acropolis towards the sea, near
the Odeum. The author of this scheme owns all the ground thereabouts; so
that private interest, and not patriotism, would seem to be the _primum
mobile_ of their suggestions. In fact, the whole of the land in and
about Athens is now the property of foreigners, who are speculating on
the immense prices to be obtained for ground-rent, &c. The landed
proprietors, and the common people, who are all labourers, are well
contented with the new arrangements; but the military chiefs and their
followers will, for a long time, be a stumbling-block in the way of the
government, even if they do not thwart and render nugatory all its
attempts at improvement.

[Sidenote: VALUE OF LAND.] Sir Pulteney Malcolm has built a magnificent
house, about two miles from the town, at the enormous cost of 3000_l._;
but at one time was on the eve of selling it for half that sum, so
discouraging were appearances on the political horizon of Greece. Now,
however, he is exceedingly glad that he did not; for, his being the only
house at all calculated for the king's residence, should the court
establish itself at Athens, it will probably be advantageously let to
the government. The value of land was extremely depreciated a few
months back, but it has since risen to such a height, that, for the
future, speculators arriving in Greece will be unable to purchase with
any prospect of advantage. The system of farming is that of the
_métayer_; and those who bought property when it was cheap, have
realised a certain profit, but far less than they expected. However,
such as own land within the walls will sell or let it again at a
considerable gain.

_Wednesday, 17th._--We quitted the Piræus, with great regret, early this
morning, and continued beating about in the Bay of Egina, near Cape
Colonna, the whole day, which was fine, though excessively hot.

A light breeze carried us by Ipsara and Mitylene, and every one on board
was in high spirits at the prospect of seeing the Asiatic coast next

[Sidenote: PLAIN OF TROY.] _Saturday, 20th._--We passed close under the
shore of Asia, opposite Alexandria Troas, the ruins of which were
visible, and, at length, came to anchor in Basiké Bay, a little south of
the mouth of the Amnis Navigabilis, and opposite to Æsachus's tomb. I
landed after dinner, and, having waded up to the middle through the
river, walked to a tumulus on the south side of Jené Keni, the top of
which affords a fine view of the plain of Troy and the entrance to the
Dardanelles. Luckily, I had with me a tracing of Sir William Gell's map,
the exactness of which enabled me to point out to my companions the
principal points of interest. The plain is extremely rich and fertile,
and, altogether, had quite an English air. A considerable quantity of
timber is scattered about very picturesquely, and numerous herds of
goats and cattle grazing added to the beauty of the scene. The ground
was enamelled with the bright colours of millions of anemones; and
storks, small tortoises, and brown-coloured snakes were seen in vast
numbers in all directions.

_Sunday, 21st._--The wind blew so hard to-day, and there was such a swell
on the beach, that it was impossible to land. A French government cutter
passed us from Constantinople, with despatches for the French admiral.
The captain came on board, and reported that the Russian force was
receiving daily accessions; that Lord Ponsonby's arrival was anxiously
expected; and that peace had been concluded between Ibrahim and the

[Sidenote: SOURCES OF THE SCAMANDER.] _Monday, 22nd._--Started this
morning, with the doctor, the master, and the tutor for Troy. We
ascended Æsachus's tomb, and proceeded thence across undulating hills,
covered with stunted oaks and brambles, varied occasionally by large
tracts of cultivation, towards the sources of the Scamander, indicated
by the grove of willows and poplars around them. Passing a large swamp,
where there were innumerable storks and waterfowl, we at last arrived at
the famous spring, called the Cold Spring, in Gell's map. It lies under
a hill, and is surrounded by oak, willow, fig, and poplar trees, having
brambles and wild vines hanging from them in festoons. Here, the clear
water of the golden Xanthus flowing among the reeds, and over the
ochre-coloured stones, tempts the thirsty passer-by with its cool and
refreshing appearance.

We sat down on a green mound, between the largest of the two springs,
and tried the temperature of them all. There are three principal sources
rising out of the base of the rock, which is a limestone breccia; the
fragments imbedded being limestone and reddish sandstone, which
communicates to the water its golden hue. The temperature of the air was
55-6/10, and that of the springs, No. 1, 64°; 2, 65°; 3, 65°.[4]

[Sidenote: TOMBS OF HECTOR AND PARIS.] Thence we proceeded to the source
called the Hot Springs; the only difference in the actual temperature
being one degree, but on immersing the hand there is a sensible warmth.
These are also under a grove of trees, situated near the village of
Bounarbashi.[5] We ascended the tombs of Hector and Paris, which command
a fine view of the Simois in its entire course, from the point where it
issues from the mountains, to its junction with the Hellespont. There
were no antiquities, besides a remnant of a granite column, neither did
we observe any inhabitants, except an old man and a few children; but
myriads of storks covered the fields in every direction. Returning to
the Scamander, we lunched at its sources; and then reclining on a
beautiful piece of turf, under the shade of a wide spreading oak, we
enjoyed our pipes until the declining sun warned us to bend our course
towards the ship.

[Sidenote: ABYDOS.] _Tuesday, 23d._--We sailed this morning, as the wind
proved fair for entering the Dardanelles. In passing close to the Segean
promontory, which is covered with windmills, the view of the Asiatic
fort and the town, with the tombs of Achilles and Patroclus, and,
further on, that of Ajax, opened upon us.[6] [Sidenote: PASSAGE OF THE
DARDANELLES.] The castles appeared well fortified on the side exposed to
the sea, their enormous guns lying on a level with the surface of the
water; but, landward, they are defenceless. The shores of the channel
are by no means so lofty as I was prepared to find them, and of their
much vaunted beauty I saw nothing, saving now and then a green and
cultivated valley, which are indeed "few, and far between." The cliffs
appeared to be composed of a coarse and soft sandstone, nearly white,
resembling chalk at a distance. We came to anchor a few miles above the
castles, with the consolation that the north wind, now set in, might
perhaps continue to blow for weeks. Contrary to our expectations,
however, the breeze having veered to the southward in the course of the
day, we weighed, and advanced a short distance up the channel; but the
wind again dying away, the current bore us back, and we anchored in our
former position.

There are now seventy of the crew on the sick list, including the first
and third lieutenant, the master, and several of the youngsters, all
like myself, suffering from the influenza. The sailors have christened
it the Dardanelles fever; and the men who are well, swear the others
sham illness, in order to escape the working through the Hellespont.
Should the captain get impatient and resolve to beat up, there will be
no end to the tacking, and the orders, "Her helm's a lee, and mainsail
haul," will be sufficiently imprinted on my memory.

[Sidenote: PRESENT TO THE AMBASSADOR.] _Monday, 29th._--Heavy rain all
day, accompanied by cold, and a strong gale. In the evening it cleared
up, and I went on shore for a short time. On either side of the channel
were a great number of vessels, waiting for the southerly wind to carry
them up to Constantinople; and now, with their sails out to dry, they
presented the singular appearance of a fleet in full sail--without
advancing. A small cutter, which serves as a packet between Smyrna and
Stamboul, worked by us before dark; she was crowded with passengers,
among whom were several ladies. The news she brought was of no great
importance, saving the certainty that the French fleet, consisting of
four sail of the line and two frigates, had arrived at Vourla. A present
of two sheep, with some poultry and vegetables, arrived from the Pasha
at the Upper Castles, for the ambassador; which looked as if the knowing
ones on shore, expected we should keep our present berth for some time.

[Sidenote: FEAST OF THE BAIRAM.] _Tuesday, April 30th._--At daylight
this morning, we were all attracted on deck by the loud report of
cannon, which came booming down the Hellespont, announcing the
commencement of the Bairam, or grand religious festival of the Turks,
when they play the same "antics before high Heaven," which Catholics do
at their carnival. The guns were shotted, and we could distinctly see
the splash of the marble balls as they dropped into the water. To-day
the Sultan visits one of the principal mosques in state; and, though
latterly the pageant has lost much of the oriental splendour that once
distinguished it, yet, from the number of fine horses, and the richness
of their caparisons, which are covered with gold, diamonds, and precious
stones; and the splendid dresses of the officers of state and their
attendants, this procession has still an air of great magnificence. In
the evening, strings of variegated lamps, with festoons of flowers,
swing from minaret to minaret, and hang over the illuminated city like a
faëry crown. From the prevalence of an unlucky northern wind this
morning, we were prevented from reaching Constantinople in time to
witness these festivities. [Sidenote: SESTOS.--TURKISH COLONEL.] The
breeze, however, suddenly veering round to the south, swiftly went round
the capstan, and merrily did our band, the solitary fiddler, rosin away
to the tune of "drops of brandy," while, with every stretch of canvass
set, we joyfully proceeded in our course, saluting the Pasha, according
to custom, as we came abreast of the village of the Dardanelles, which
occupies a low situation, and its mean-looking houses are huddled
together in a very unpicturesque manner. The celebrated castles look
formidable enough, with their enormous guns lying upon the ground
without carriages, and sweeping the surface of the waves from shore to
shore. The entire population was assembled upon the wharfs, or on the
tops of the houses, and the flags of the consuls were displayed; so
that, altogether, we saw the town to the best advantage. They returned
our salute, and, immediately after, a mech-men-dar, or colonel,
appointed by the Sultan to accompany the ambassador to Constantinople,
came on board with his pipe-bearer. He wore a splendid dress, and was a
remarkably well made man, of a dark copper colour, probably a Nubian by
birth. The village on the European side of the Dardanelles is not so
large as that on the shore opposite; but, being built on a declivity,
and having gardens and cypress trees intermingled with the houses, it is
far more beautiful. Sestos, the European fort, is also very strong
seaward, but is commanded by a hill that rises behind it. Were the guns
well served, the vessel that should attempt to force a passage between
these two castles could only escape being sunk by a miracle.

[Sidenote: BEAUTIFUL SCENE.] As we glided onwards to our destination,
the scene became exceedingly animated: the sea was covered with
innumerable vessels having all their canvass spread; some were following
in our wake towards Constantinople even with skysails, but the superior
sailing of the Actæon gradually left them far astern. As we passed
Gallipoli, two Russian men-of-war were lying off the town, which is of
considerable size; and in the Bay of Lampsacus, on the opposite coast,
were also several Turkish ships. The landscape on the European side of
the Sea of Marmora, in which we now were, is composed of gently sloping
hills, well cultivated, while on that of Asia, it is bolder and more

There was now every probability of our arriving at Constantinople
to-morrow, and we enjoyed the satisfaction of sailing past the Smyrna
packet, which, having hauled too close in shore, lost the wind and lay
there quite becalmed.

[Sidenote: THE SEVEN TOWERS.] _Wednesday, May 1st._--Off Cape St.
Stefano at day break. Three Turkish frigates lying at anchor there,
fired the usual salute in honour of the festival of the Bairam, which is
repeated at sunrise and sunset from all the men-of-war and batteries
during the three days of its continuance. The guns of the fort were
shotted, like those of the Dardanelles. As the darkness gave place to
light, Stamboul disclosed itself to our anxious gaze, and we arrived
opposite the Seven Towers, just as the sun cast its morning tints over
the gilded cupolas and tall graceful minarets of this "Queen of Cities."

Long, long ago, my anxious hope was to behold, some day or other, the
spot I was now approaching; at that time with little chance of its ever
being accomplished, but now fulfilled to my perfect satisfaction. The
Seven Towers, and the city walls, which are in many places thickly
covered with ivy, appear to be in a very ruinous condition. These latter
are trebled on the land-side, having a ditch between each. From the
numerous fragments of marble and granite columns, many of them bearing
inscriptions, every where intermingled with the masonry, it is evident
that the fortifications of Constantinople were built of the remnants of
the ancient capital. This is peculiarly visible in the neighbourhood of
the seraglio, where Irene's palace is supposed to have formerly stood.
Facing the water is that portion of the suburbs inhabited by the
Armenians, but presenting no attractions to the stranger, being
exceedingly crowded and dirty; and along the shore are the stations for
washing, slaughtering cattle, and throwing into the sea the filth
collected by the scavengers.

[Sidenote: THE PASHA'S GATE.] If these objects were calculated to excite
feelings of disgust, the scene which next presented itself was beautiful
as fairy land. The ship sailed close under the lofty wall of the
seraglio garden, which is separated from the sea by only a narrow wharf.
Shady groves, bowers of oranges, roses and jasmine, lofty cypresses, and
wide spreading plane trees, embosom the elegant pagoda-shaped buildings,
which comprise the kiosks of the Sultan, and the women's apartments; all
of which, together with the stables and other inferior offices, are
richly gilt and painted of various gaudy colours. Near one of the
seraglio gates is erected a large wooden house, where many a disobedient
Pasha has awaited the decree of banishment issued against him by his
imperious master. There, too, he was shipped on board the vessel
destined to carry him into exile; or, if condemned to expiate his
offences with his life, it was there the bowstring was applied. Hence
this entrance is known by the appellation of the Pasha's gate. A little
further on, we observed a small low door in the wall, scarcely high
enough to admit an ordinary sized man. Through this opening the slaves
newly purchased, for either the Sultan or Sultana, are conveyed into the
palace; through it also, they make their exit, when barbarous jealousy
or revenge prompts their destruction; and many a lovely Dudú or Lolah,
and many a fair Sultana sewn in the cruel sack, have been borne through
this fatal opening, and cast into the

              "Rolling waves, which hide
  Already many a once love-beaten breast,
  Deep in the caverns of the deadly tide."

[Sidenote: BEAUTIES OF STAMBOUL.] We now sailed round the promontory of
the Golden Horn, when all the beauties of Stamboul, Pera, the Bosphorus,
and Scutari, burst suddenly upon the view. Looking towards the seraglio
point is seen the richly gilded palace of the Sultan, with a gate that
glitters as if formed of polished gold; and backed by a profusion of
foliage, and the buildings of the Serai. Farther distant is St. Sophia
and the other mosques, whose golden domes and graceful, tapering
minarets, tower above the mass of painted buildings interspersed with
dark cypresses and beautiful plane trees, which covers the surface of
the "seven hills." Thousands of roses hang clustering on the trellis
work which adorns the gardens of the numerous villages, summer palaces,
and villas occupying the shores of the Bosphorus, and the harbour
between Constantinople and Galata appears crowded with ships, and with
numberless caiques, gliding rapidly from shore to shore. [Sidenote:
PERA.--SCUTARI.] Lastly, Pera, with its vast range of cypresses, crowns
the hill, and extends along the whole length of the town. Looking in
another direction, appears the burying ground of Scutari, also with its
cypress grove, many miles in extent; the mosque, and barracks of Sultan
Selim; Leander's tower in the channel which we have just quitted; and,
lastly, the Turkish fleet of many sail lying at anchor, and displaying
all their colours in honour of the Bairam.

Meanwhile, the Actæon held on her silent majestic course towards the
destined anchorage; and as I stood upon the quarter deck, contemplating
the magnificent objects that presented themselves wherever I turned my
sight, I felt all those thrilling emotions of rapture and delight which
such scenes are calculated to inspire, and which constitute a sort of
oäsis in the memory of those who have experienced them. Here nature and
art have gone hand in hand, assisting each other, and scattering roses;
here every thing that falls from the bosom of the former is rich and
luxuriant, and every thing that proceeds from the latter is novel,
extraordinary, in a word, it is _oriental_; and faults, which in more
civilised communities would be considered inconsistent with good taste,
are here ever pleasing, and seem necessary to the unity of the whole.

[Sidenote: TURKISH FLEET.] A royal salute was fired as we passed the
summer palace of Dolma Bashi, where the Sultan at present resides. It
was immediately returned by the Mahmoudie, the Capitan Pasha's ship.
What splendid vessels! Among them two are three-deckers, the largest
ships in the world, one carrying 140, the other 136 brass guns, and the
whole armament appeared to be in a condition that would not discredit an
English dockyard. Considering how short a period has intervened since
the Sultan lost his entire fleet, it is really miraculous to see him
with another, amounting to two three-deckers, four line of battle ships,
eight frigates, three corvettes, three sloops, and a number of cutters,
all completely equipped for active service. The recently erected palace
of the Sultan on the Asiatic side of the channel, next came in sight. It
consists of a long range of magnificent buildings, painted a rich
colour, between fawn and yellow, picked out with white, and profusely
ornamented with gilding. The interior, I am told, displays a singular
mixture of European and oriental luxury. Parisian furniture, mirrors,
and ornaments from Germany, Persian carpets, and hangings, in short
every thing rare or beautiful, from the east and west being collected
there. [Sidenote: CASTLE OF THE JANISSARIES.] We now passed the old
castle of the janissaries, the first fortress the Turks possessed in
Europe. It lies opposite to the beautiful valley of the sweet waters of
Asia, where the Sultan has a kiosk: and hither, in summer, the Turkish
ladies come on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Fridays, to _pic-nic_. Formerly,
when a janissary was condemned to die, he was confined in this castle.
At the appointed hour, he was led through a small arched doorway, which
opens on the Bosphorus, and there decapitated, and the body was thrown
into the sea; at the same instant the firing of a long gun, which stands
by the side of the gate, announced the execution of his sentence.

[Illustration: Drawn G. C. from a Sketch by the Author.

The Russian encampment on the Giant's Mountain from the English Palace

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

As I before observed, every portion of the European and Asiatic coast is
covered with villas and gardens. The houses are painted of various
colours, and have verandas, with trellis work, covered with roses,
running round them. Those situated near the water are built with an
arched entrance for the caiques, through which, by means of a short
canal, they glide into the centre of the court-yard. The water here is
very deep, and we were sailing so close to the shore, that the mainyard
scarcely cleared the houses. Indeed, instances have occurred, where
the inhabitants have been surprised by the visit of a bowsprit pushing
its way through the wood-work, and carrying off the roof of their

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN CAMP.] We now came in sight of the Russian
encampment, and the tents which covered the summit of an extensive range
of hills, called the Unkiar Skelessi, or Giant's Mountain[7], resembled
so many snowy pinnacles. Their fleet, consisting of ten ships of the
line, a number of frigates, and small craft, lay on the opposite side of
the channel.

Beyond the village of Jani Keni, and opposite the Sultan's valley, we
also found the Russian head quarters established, and a Russian frigate
occupying the berth in which the Actæon had anchored twice before. We
therefore passed on, and dropped anchor a little a-head of a French
frigate, opposite Terapia, and close to the Russian camp. The usual
firing immediately commenced, but, by some oversight, the Russian
admiral's salute was returned with two guns less than the usual number.
In about an hour afterwards, he sent his flag lieutenant, who spoke
English, on board the Actæon, to inquire why we had only fired fifteen
guns when he had paid the compliment of seventeen. The omission was
immediately acknowledged, the two remaining guns discharged, and the
gallant lieutenant rowed off again well satisfied. We soon ascertained
that this sensitiveness proceeded from their anxiety to convince the
Turks that no ill-will existed between England and Russia, and that no
insult was meditated by our ship, more particularly as the British
ambassador to the Porte, was known to be on board. I doubt much,
however, if the Turks, although quite _au fait_ to all matters of
ceremony, understood the firing of the two guns afterwards.

[Sidenote: FRENCH AND ENGLISH EMBASSIES.] The town of Buyukdere, or the
deep valley, off which lies the Russian fleet, is also the residence of
the Russian, Austrian, and German ambassadors; the very hotbed of plots
and etiquette. At Terapia the French and English embassies reside
alongside each other; indications of that perfect unanimity which ought
to subsist between these two great powers; and, if they remain true to
each other, I would confidently back Terapia politics and manoeuvres
against those of Buyukdere. The French palace is a spacious building,
with beautiful and extensive gardens. That inhabited by the English
ambassador, on the contrary, is small, comfortless, and with only a
small slip of ground.

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN MILITARY MUSIC.] This day was occupied in visits from
the secretaries of embassy of the different missions. As the plague was
in Terapia a few days since, that village is put in quarantine with the
palace; which also lies under the same regulations in respect to the
Actæon: and as the Russian sentinels refused to allow any one to land in
the Sultan's valley, we had nothing to do but to watch their drills and
parade exercises, while listening to the music of the horn bands, which
played on a hill close to our anchorage; and the beauty of these
national airs, somewhat compensated for the rudeness with which they
turned us off the shore. It was very cold in the afternoon; the shifting
of the wind to the north caused a great change in the weather, and
towards evening we were glad to keep below.

_Thursday, 2d._ It is a most lovely morning: all nature seems to rejoice
in the freshening breeze, which, blowing from the Black Sea, tempers
even the hottest days with its refreshing coolness, and extracts the
sweets from millions of roses, which ever bloom on the shores of the
Bosphorus. From the jasmine or orange flower, it floats with its odorous
burthen along the current, and lays all its perfume at the foot of

[Sidenote: THE CAIQUE.] A party of us embarked in a sort of light boat
called a caique, than which no species of vessel, save the gondola, cuts
more softly and noiselessly through the waters. It is a narrow wooden
canoe, with a long beak; the outside is painted black, with a strip of
bright red inside the stern piece; and is ornamented with carvings of
flowers, and a thousand other devices. A Persian carpet, or a piece of
oil cloth, covers the part on which the foot steps in entering, and here
the slippers are left or retained, as the owner pleases. Those who ride
in them do not sit on benches, but in the bottom of the caique, on a
Persian carpet. The interior is white as snow, and there is an
ornamented back board which runs across, and separates the stepping
place from that appropriated to the purpose of a seat. It has no keel,
and the paddles are long, and broad at the end. Some caiques are rowed
by one, others by two boatmen, with two oars or sculls each; but the
most elegant of these vessels have three rowers. The _employés_ of high
station about the Porte, and the ministers of the different foreign
courts, keep superb caiques, rowed by eight, ten, or even twelve men;
but although these boats are very striking in their appearance, they
want that air of comfort and neatness which distinguish the smaller

[Sidenote: TURKISH BOATMEN.] The rowers are either Greeks or Turks, and
wear a fez just large enough to cover the crown of the head, which is
close shaved. The remainder of their dress consists of a thin
transparent shirt, with large sleeves reaching to the elbows; and cotton
drawers fastened to the knees; both as white as snow. They are a fine
robust race of men, and their muscular sun-burnt forms are displayed to
advantage through the gauze which so slightly covers them. At each
stroke they utter a grunt, by forcing the breath suddenly from the
chest; to acquire this accomplishment, is considered a necessary part of
the boatman's education, and his character depends much upon it.

When we arrived at the landing-place of Tophana, a Turk, splendidly
habited, pulled the caique close up with a long pole, and assisted us
out; for which service he was rewarded with a few paras.[8]

A fountain of singular beauty is here erected in the centre of the fish
and vegetable market, which, from its vicinity to the arsenal, and from
its being the landing-place for all pleasure boats coming from Scutari
and the neighbouring villages of the Bosphorus, is constantly occupied
by a crowd of idlers.

In the street leading up to Pera, the throng, which was also
considerable, presented an infinite variety of novel and picturesque
costume. The pavement is bad, but very clean, and greatly exceeds in
this respect the narrow streets of the generality of Italian or Scotch
towns. There is no cry of "heads below;" and a man may wander about at
night without any fear of other rain than that of heaven, provided he
carries a light with him.

[Sidenote: PERA.--DESTRUCTIVE FIRE.] Pera is recovering but slowly from
the destructive fire, which two years ago ravaged this quarter of
Constantinople; for, owing to the unsettled condition of public affairs,
and the uncertainty as to who may be the future masters of this capital,
the rich are unwilling to embark their property in building speculations
on any very extensive scale. However, three handsome streets have been
finished, the houses of which appear better and more commodiously built
than they were formerly. Having secured apartments in a very comfortable
lodging-house, kept by one Guiseppino Vitali, we paid a visit to Mr.
Cartwright, the consul-general, perhaps one of the most excellent and
kind-hearted individuals ever invested with the consular authority.
Since the fire, he has built a very comfortable house, where he
exercises a generous and unbounded hospitality.

[Sidenote: HOSPITALITY OF THE BRITISH CONSUL.] From Messrs. Black and
Hardy, our bankers in Galata, we also experienced the most friendly
attentions. We thence proceeded to Mr. Stampa's, that emporium of all
good condiments, where Adrianople tongues, Yorkshire bacon, Scotch
whisky, French cogniac, Scotch ale, London porter, English cheese, and
Havannah segars may be obtained for "a consideration." In fact, no shop
can be supplied with a greater variety of articles, nor in any city upon
the surface of the globe are luxuries, whether foreign or domestic, to
be obtained more plentifully than in Stamboul. Returning to Guiseppino,
we dined at the Europa, a good inn--at least, we had a good dinner; and
as evening advanced, proceeded to Tophana, and after a two hours' pull
up the Bosphorus, we arrived at the ship. The current runs so strong,
that the boats are obliged to keep in close to the shore, and at three
points are towed by old men and boys, who are stationed there for the
purpose, and receive a few paras for their labour.

_Friday, 3d._--To-day it poured with rain without cessation, and in
consequence, the ambassador could not go on shore. In the evening I
went to the palace for a few minutes, but it felt so cold and
comfortless that I had no wish to remain. This is by no means a fit
residence for our ambassador. I returned to the ship loaded with
newspapers, the appearance of which on the gun-room table was hailed
with satisfaction, nearly a month having elapsed since any one on board
had heard of the state of home and Europe.

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN MILITARY FUNERAL.] _Saturday, 4th._--This morning a
Russian soldier was buried, and we observed the ceremony from the
quarter deck. He was borne in an open wooden coffin; a priest in black,
and with a long beard, headed the procession, and a company of soldiers
brought up the rear. On arriving at the grave, the priest put on an
additional garment, having a yellow cross upon it, and then read the
service, sprinkling the body at intervals with holy water (as we
supposed), for the distance was too considerable to enable us to see
distinctly. After each person present had repeated this portion of the
ceremony as he walked round the corpse, the priest resumed his duties,
scattering more water upon the body, and the lid being put on the
coffin, a blessing was pronounced while it was lowered into the grave,
and with the casting in of the earth, the ceremony ended. The soldiers
then filed up the hill; while the priest, disencumbering himself of his
robes, proceeded to saunter about the shore.

[Sidenote: LANDING OF THE AMBASSADOR.] At two o'clock the ambassador
landed in state: the yards were manned, and the salute fired. Soon
after, the rest of the suite followed; and the Actæon was now left to
quiet and regular duty. The cabins fitted up for the party were cleared
away in the course of an hour; and before the dinner drum beat, the main
deck had been again restored to its just proportions. In the evening, my
companion and self also left the ship, and went down to Pera, to
establish ourselves for the present in the house of Master Tongo; a name
by which I find our landlord is better known than by that of Vitali.

_Sunday, 5th._--On looking out of window into the street this morning, I
beheld crowds of Armenian and Greek women proceeding to church, the
former wearing the gashmak, or veil, and their long dark feridges, or
cloaks, with red morocco slippers just peeping out beneath. They differ
from the Turkish women only in not covering the nose, and having red
instead of yellow slippers, in which they shuffle along slowly to their
worship. Of the Greeks, however, some wore over their hair embroidered
handkerchiefs, arranged _à la Française_ in the shape of a toque; others
were muffled in cloaks of a snuff-brown colour, with a white muslin veil
arranged upon the back of the head, and having both ends brought round
upon the breast: thus exposing the whole face, and setting off to the
best advantage the handsome regular features, and the dark eye, with its
long black silky lash.

[Sidenote: VISIT TO THE BAZAARS.] After breakfast, a party was made to
visit the bazaars; and we embarked at the new custom-house stairs, in
Galata, where numbers of caiques lie ready for hire, and where the same
scramble occurs for passengers as at Blackfriars or Tower Stairs in
England. We glided rapidly across, skilfully avoiding the numerous
caiques that were plying in a contrary direction, the boatman calling
out, "On the European side,"--"On the Asiatic side," as it suited his
purpose to pass to the right or left, there appearing to be no
established law for regulating their motions.

On landing at the Balouk[9], or fish bazaar, we passed through the
bazaar of drugs, called also that of Alexandria, an extensive covered
building, where rhubarb, paints, senna, and other commodities of that
sort, are sold in stalls fitted up on both sides of the passage. The
articles are all exposed in the most tempting manner, according to the
fancy of the vendor, who sits cross-legged on the shop-board behind,
waiting anxiously for his customer; and when any one stops but for an
instant, he pops out his head like a spider, to ascertain whether it is
a bite or not. We passed through the pipe-stick bazaar, situated in an
open street: on one side of which, pipe-sticks and amber mouth-pieces
are exposed to sale; the other being almost entirely occupied by
turners, who work with extraordinary neatness, considering the imperfect
nature of their tools. From the bazaar where cotton handkerchiefs and
shawls, English and German, are sold, we passed to the shop of Mustapha,
the scent dealer, where we established ourselves for a luncheon,
consisting of pipes, coffee, and lemonade, while the various bottles of
perfume,--viz. attar of roses and jasmine, musk, musk rat-tails, lemon
essence, sandal wood, pastilles, dyes, all the sweet odours that form
part and parcel of a sultana's toilet, were temptingly exposed to our
view. From time to time, portions of these delicacies were rubbed on our
whiskers, hands, and lips, to induce us to purchase; so that when we
left the shop to return to Pera, we were a walking bouquet of
_millefleurs_, and might have been scented a mile off. After visiting
the dockyard, where a line of battle ship and two frigates were getting
ready for sea, we climbed the hill of Pera, under the shade of the dark
and splendid cypress trees covering the burial ground, and from which
long avenues lead to various parts of the town. [Sidenote: PUBLIC
PROMENADES.] These are the favourite walks of the Perotes; and the gay
dresses of the ladies, who, in joyous parties, ramble along the silent
and gloomy pathways, contrast oddly with the sad and mournful character
of this place of tombs. We again strolled about in this ground after
dinner; but were soon tired, the cold being too severe to be pleasant;
and even the inhabitants retire early. The evenings at Pera are not
agreeable, there being no public amusements into which one can enter;
and society is so garbled with form and etiquette, that it is hardly
worth seeking; smoking, therefore, is the only resource, and most people
adopt it.

[Sidenote: PIPE-STICK BAZAAR.] _Monday, 6th._--This morning we landed at
the Lemon Skalese, where the fruit bazaar stands. Here were shops full
of Smyrna figs, dried dates, plums, and various other fruits; with
cheese, and Russian butter. We went thence through the place where wax
candles are sold, to the pipe-stick bazaar, where I intended to be a
purchaser both of amber and cherry sticks. Of the former there are two
sorts: the white, creamy, or lemon-coloured amber is the most valuable;
and a large mouth-piece of the very purest is sometimes worth 5000 or
6000 piastres, equal to about 50_l._ or 60_l._ sterling. The second or
yellow kind, being more common, is comparatively little esteemed, for
the perfection of this article consists in its being free from flaws,
cracks, or spots; and if the tube of wood can be seen through the amber,
it is considered as very inferior in a Turk's estimation. There is a
third sort, which is valueless from its transparency. It is either real
or factitious, and often consists merely of the scrapings and refuse
morsels, melted into lumps, and manufactured into cheap mouth-pieces.
This portion of the Turkish pipe is frequently adorned with precious
stones, enamelling, or carved wood, according to the fancy of the
purchaser. The cost of those generally exposed for sale varies from 20
to 1500 piastres, and when one of a higher price is required, it is
found in the possession of some wealthy Turkish or Armenian merchant.
The amber is imported from Dantzic in lumps; there is considerable risk
in the purchase of the crude article, and hence arises its excessive
dearness when it turns out well. The cherry sticks come from Persia by
Trebisond; they are brought to Constantinople in pieces of about two
feet long; and after being set straight, are dressed and polished with
infinite care. They are united into sticks generally of five or six
feet, though some are as long as twelve feet, and the junction is so
skilfully concealed with the bark, that in a well-made pipe it is
impossible to discover it. When repolished, they are ready for sale,
being left unbored until the merchant has found a purchaser. From 30 to
100 piastres is the usual price demanded, but it differs according to
the length, size, and fineness of the bark; and dark-coloured sticks are
preferred to those which are lighter. Pipe-sticks are also made of
rose-tree and other woods; but the favourite summer pipe is of jasmine,
which is not so dear as the cherry, and is very light and flexible. I
have seen them of one entire piece, measuring ten feet. These are
cleaned by squeezing lemon juice through them, which is also rubbed over
the outside to render them cool. Another species of pipe is the narghilé
or water pipe; our sailors have christened it the hubble-bubble: it is a
species of hookah, consisting of a glass bowl partly filled with water,
a pipe holder fitted into its taper neck, and a long flexible tube, made
of embossed leather and brass wire, through which the smoke is drawn.
The bowls are manufactured of clay in various forms; some being very
plain, others really elegant, with abundance of gilding and ornament.
[Sidenote: TURKISH TOBACCO.] The tobacco smoked in the ordinary pipe, is
brought from the Crimea, Salonica, Latakia, Ormus, and other parts of
the East. The Salonica tobacco is mild and excellent; that from Latakia,
on the contrary, is strong and dark coloured. The price varies between
four and ten piastres the oke, of two pounds and three quarters English;
it is also sold in bales of ten okes each, at the same rate. The tobacco
smoked in the narghilé is of a different quality and cut: the best comes
from Shiraz, and it is damped previously to being put into the clay
bowl. The mode of using the narghilé is not only difficult to acquire,
but, to a beginner, is painful and sickening; the air being exhaled from
the lungs, and replaced by the smoke and breath. Every Turk, and indeed
every inhabitant of Stamboul, carries about his person a square bag,
either of cachemire ornamented with embroidery, or of common silk, in
which he keeps a supply of tobacco; and as the coffee-house supplies him
with a pipe-stick and pipe gratis, he pays only for the cup of coffee
which accompanies it. He loads his pipe from his own bag, and the boy
of the establishment places a small bit of lighted charcoal on it. They
may be seen by hundreds before every coffee-shop, seated on low stools,
blowing clouds, sipping Mocha juice, and exhibiting the most solemn
taciturnity and perfect content. In driving bargains, the Turk, having
seated the purchaser at his side, presents him with coffee and a pipe,
and between the puffs of smoke the negotiation is carried on. If it does
not succeed, the pipe is resigned, thanks are returned for the coffee,
and the business is at an end; should they agree, another pipe generally
concludes the affair.

[Sidenote: THE SHOE BAZAAR.] We next went through the shoe bazaar, where
are arranged thousands of pairs of slippers and boots, some of yellow,
others of red morocco, and of all sizes. But the most superb exhibition
consists of the embroidered slippers for the use of the women within
doors; these are made of velvet, silk, or cloth, covered with gold and
silk embroidery, pearls, &c. Here also are sold mirrors of different
shapes, with the backs likewise embroidered in various colours and
devices, intended for the fair inhabitants of the harem. [Sidenote:
JEWELLERY.--BROUSSA SILKS.] Though this bazaar, from its novelty, is
generally acknowledged to be the most attractive, it does not offer such
splendid temptations as that devoted to the sale of jewellery, which we
now entered, and which consists of a series of low, narrow arched
passages, opening into each other, and very badly paved. The shops or
stalls, instead of the usual inner apartment, have only high counters,
behind which sits the Armenian jeweller. Before him is placed a square
glass case, in which are huddled together, in precious confusion, silver
filagree coffee-cup holders, chased gold and silver boxes for talismans,
silver heads for narghilé, female ornaments, pastile burners, old
snuff-boxes, rings, cornelian ointment boxes, gems, and agate-hilted
dirks. The more valuable articles are probably kept in drawers under the
counter, or in the strong room of some fire-proof khan or warehouse.
Thence I went into the Broussa silk bazaar, a square building divided
into compartments, in which are piled up pieces of the silk of a
thousand different patterns. The produce of the Broussa manufacture is a
mixture of cotton and silk, with which gold and silver thread is
frequently intermingled; the pattern is exceedingly splendid, and it is
used for the gowns and jackets of both men and women. There is also a
stuff made in Constantinople of similar materials, which, though all of
one colour, is exceedingly handsome, and well adapted for dresses. The
bazaars closing at two o'clock, we returned to Pera highly gratified
with the day's excursion.

[Sidenote: RESIDENCE OF THE BRITISH EMBASSY.] _Tuesday, 7th._--Went up
this morning to Terapia to pay a visit at the palace, and learned that
Count Orloff had arrived from Odessa as ambassador extraordinary and
commander-in-chief of the Russian force, with a _carte blanche_ from his
sovereign as to the treaties and measures he might think fit to adopt. I
went over the palace, which is but just large enough to accommodate the
family of our ambassador, and the _attaché_ is obliged to live in a
house higher up the hill, but within the walls of the government
property. Returned in the evening to Pera, more than ever captivated
with the beauties of the Bosphorus; though the cold weather still
retards the progress of vegetation, and the leaves are but slowly making
their appearance. Indeed so late a spring, and such inclement weather,
have rarely been experienced at Constantinople before.

[Sidenote: FUNERAL OF A FRANK PHYSICIAN.] _Wednesday, 8th._--The funeral
of the Sultan's French physician passed our lodgings, on its way to the
burying-ground. It was accompanied by about 100 officers and soldiers
without arms; and, this being the first time any Turks had appeared at a
Christian ceremony, a great sensation was excited in Pera. The man
was much esteemed by the Sultan, and was a favourite with all classes,
both Turks and Christians. The following was the order of the funeral.
First came the soldiers, divided into two bodies, one occupying either
side of the street, with the officers in the centre; then followed a
number of Capuchin monks, with priests and servitors of the Greek
church; lastly appeared the body, carried upon a bier, and covered with
a black silk pall, with a yellow cross, its four orange tassels being
held by supporters. A crowd of Franks, Turks, and Armenians, wearing
crape upon their arms, closed the procession. The bearers were
distinguished by large fur caps, decorated with red cloth, resembling
the calpac of the Armenians, and every individual carried in his hand a
long thin wax taper.

_Thursday, 9th._--I again went up to Terapia, where there is a report,
that the pilots of the Sea of Marmora and the Dardanelles have gone on
board the Russian fleet, and that more troops have arrived. The
Russians, however, strongly deny both facts. [Sidenote: AUDIENCE OF THE
SULTAN.] Our ambassador had a private audience of the Sultan this
morning, an express having arrived, somewhat unexpectedly, at the palace
of the British embassy yesterday evening, intimating that the Sultan
would receive Lord Ponsonby at nine o'clock on the following day. It
seems that Count Orloff had peremptorily demanded an audience; but as
our ambassador arrived before him, he was entitled to precedence in this
matter; and Count Orloff's reception was accordingly arranged to take
place one hour afterwards. Lord Ponsonby went with his nephew Captain
Grey, and Mr. Waller, the _attaché_. They were received at the palace or
new kiosk at Dolma Batché, on the European side; and as they landed, the
Sultan's band struck up "God save the King." On being ushered into the
presence, they found his Highness seated on his divan, an apartment
splendidly painted and decorated, and after the ambassador had paid and
received the usual compliments, coffee and pipes were introduced. The
Sultan shewed them a portrait, in a wide gilt frame, of himself on
horseback, painted by some Sardinian artist. It was a resemblance, but
indifferently executed. After remaining an hour, they took leave; and
found a Russian steamer, with Count Orloff on board, waiting near the
palace. The Count's audience lasted _two hours_. Many plans were, no
doubt, formed; and every one feels in great anxiety to know the result
of this conference. [Sidenote: NAVAL PUNISHMENTS.] I dined to-day at
the palace. Admiral Roussin, the French ambassador, came in, in the
evening. He is frank and undisguised, as a sailor ought to be; and
entered at once upon the policy intended to be adopted by his
government. He seemed persuaded that Ibrahim would retire behind Mount
Taurus; and expressed himself very doubtful of the good faith of the

Slept on board the Actæon, in the cockpit,--a terribly close berth, and
hot as an oven. Penny, one of the carpenter's crew, who had been ill for
a long time with rheumatic pains, died in the course of the afternoon,
and will be buried to-morrow.

_Friday, 10th._--There being a punishment
this morning, of course I remained in the gun-room.
Two sailors received the cat, and although
the thing is perfectly disgusting, my experience
convinces me it is necessary to the maintenance
of discipline. The captain and first lieutenant
are averse to the practice of flogging; but, if
the first man had been punished for a similar
dereliction of duty, a fortnight since, he very
probably would not have repeated the offence;
and his fate might have served as a warning to
his companion in suffering. In fact, the knowledge
that the captain dislikes to proceed to this
extremity, encourages the unruly to get drunk
and be insolent.

The Russians exercise their troops daily in
marching, counter-marching, skirmishing, and
firing at a mark. The officers of the Actæon
have written orders to be admitted into the
camp, and now go on shore every afternoon to
play cricket in the Sultan's Valley, much to the
amusement of both Russian and Turk. The
Russian general recently came on board, and
expressed his surprise that the captain had not
visited the camp, inviting him to do so, and at
the same time leaving these orders for the officers.
Returned to Pera in the evening. The
shore on either side the channel daily acquires
new beauties, as the warm weather advances,
and the trees assume their summer clothing.
As I passed the Turkish fleet at sunset, the
Mahmoudiel fired a gun; and, in an instant,
every topmast was lowered, with as much precision
and celerity as would have been displayed
by an English fleet at Spithead.

[Illustration: Drawn & Etched by George. Cruikshank, from a Sketch by the

Sweet Waters

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

[Sidenote: CABOBS.--RAPACITY OF THE SULTAN.] _Saturday, 11th._--Went to
a cabob shop. Cabobs are made of small pieces of mutton, about the size
of a small walnut; which being strung on iron or silver skewers, and
roasted over a fire, with plenty of grease, are served up with a
species of soft cake, toasted, and soaked in gravy, or with milk,
water, parsley, and garlic, brought all together in a large bowl. The
Turks eat it with their fingers; we had forks: they were, however, so
dirty, that we quickly abandoned them for the Oriental method. This is a
capital dish, with the single exception of the garlic. A glass of cold
water, and a pipe at the nearest coffee shop, finished our repast, and
we then went to a rich Greek merchant's strong room, to see some amber
mouth-pieces; and he certainly did shew us a splendid collection, valued
at 200,000 piastres. On returning to his shop, when about to pay him a
large sum on account of my purchases, he requested me not to do so
there, but accompany him to a more convenient situation, lest the Turks
should observe that he was receiving money. Both Armenians and Greeks
most anxiously conceal their wealth, as it might subject them to be
pillaged by the Sultan, either directly, or through the extortions of
his tax gatherers.

[Sidenote: NAVAL ARSENAL--CEMETERIES.] _Sunday, 12th._--This afternoon I
visited the Valley of Sweet Waters; an appellation conferred on it by
the Franks, instead of its proper name, Keathane, or "paper
manufactory." Greeks, Armenians, and Turks make parties on Sundays and
holidays to this retired and beautiful promenade, where they dine and
pic-nic. In proceeding thither, our caique passed the Arsenal, and we
saw one line-of-battle ship afloat, and nearly ready to join the fleet,
another on the stocks, and two frigates in a forward state. The American
builder, at present at the head of the dockyard, has built a range of
very neat workshops and stores; and great activity characterises the
whole department. In passing up, I saw the remains of the old palace of
Theodorus, on one side of which is the Jewish cemetery, extending an
immense distance, but without a single tree; and the grey head-stones,
thickly strewed over the inclosure, look as if they had fallen from
heaven in a shower. A prettily situated village, with its Turkish
burying-ground, is on the opposite side; there cypresses cast their
mournful shade upon the tombs of the departed Mahomedans, and numerous
parties had landed there from their caiques, and were regaling
themselves under the large trees, where any happened to border the
river. On arriving, we found the landing-place thronged with boats, and
the walks crowded by visitors. Sultan Selim erected a palace here, which
he intended should resemble that of Versailles. His ambassador, on
returning from Paris, had brought back some views of that splendid abode
of the [Sidenote: PALACE.--TURKISH HORSES.] French monarchs; and Selim,
struck by its magnificence, determined to build a kiosk in imitation of
it. Accordingly he changed the river into a straight canal; formed
avenues, which were planted with long lines of trees; contrived
waterfalls, and laid out a beautiful park. The trees have grown up to a
magnificent size, and cast a pleasant shade over the walks and water;
but the deserted palace is fast falling to decay, and the park is
frequented only in the spring. Here the Sultan's horses are sent to
graze; and their visit is celebrated with great pomp on St. George's day
(Old Style), when they come in procession, and to each of them is
allotted a place in the park, in which they are picketed after the
fashion usual in the East. The tents pitched near them are occupied by
Bulgarians, whose duty it is to watch the animals night and day; and,
perhaps, a more magnificent collection of fine horses was never seen
feeding together, or in an equally beautiful spot. [Sidenote: AUDIENCE
OF THE SULTAN.] Here were assembled parties of all nations. Crowds of
Turkish women, closely veiled, sat under the trees, listening to the
performances of itinerant musicians and dancers, whose instruments were
fiddles, dulcimers, and tambourines. The singing consists solely in
dwelling a considerable time on a single note, with the mouth wide open,
the head thrown back, and the eyes half shut; then, suddenly changing
to another tone, about half a dozen words are strung together, and a
sort of dialogue, in recitative, is kept up by the performers. In one
direction, a conjurer is seen exhibiting his feats of manual dexterity,
surrounded by a motley gaping crowd;--in another, a story-teller
exercises the risible faculties of the sedate Turk, as well as of the
merry laughter-loving Greek. A string of Armenian women approach,
walking two and two with slow solemn steps, and followed by a slave
carrying a basket of refreshments. Behind these come a party of gaily
dressed Greeks of Pera, laughing and joking, the very personification of
merriment; while their more stately country-woman of the Fanal, moves
majestically along in another direction, with the pride of a thousand
years of ancestry, conspicuous in her air and carriage, and all the
consciousness of perfect classic beauty, in her form and face.
[Sidenote: THE ERRABA.] Nor does she omit to display her delicate foot
with its stocking of snowy white, and neat morocco shoe. Under the
shelter of yonder magnificent plane trees, stands an erraba or Turkish
carriage, in which the Sultan's sister and a large party of female
slaves are seated, eating mahalabé and drinking sherbet, while they
enjoy the busy scene before them. The erraba has no springs, and is
richly ornamented with a profusion of gilding, and covered with
beautiful shawls, crimson silk, or white muslin fringed with silk or
gold, according to the taste and fancy of the owner. The interior is
furnished with cushions, and the entrance is from behind, by a small
ladder: it is drawn by two oxen, guided by a man on foot; and when out
on distant excursions, is generally followed by a boy, carrying
provisions. The heads of the oxen alone are furnished with harness, to
which a string of large bright blue glass beads is added, to protect the
animals from the fascination of the evil eye. From either yoke, a long
curved stick, painted alternately with blue and red, and decorated with
woollen tassels of the same colour, extends backwards over the oxen, as
far as the front of the carriage.

[Sidenote: BEAUTIFUL WOMEN.] The Turkish women, when none of their
countrymen are present, are fond of conversing with a Frank,
particularly if he appears to be a stranger newly arrived, and not a
resident at Pera. They will offer confectionary, mahalabé, and remove
their yashmaks, as several did to-day; but not one of the fair wearers
could vie in personal beauty with some of the Greeks who surrounded
them. Still, however, they were pretty, with fine dark eyes, but the
total absence of the rosy hue of health is unpleasing; and the custom
of staining the lips and blackening the eyelashes, communicates a
ghastly paleness to their features. Yet their skin is excessively
delicate; and many of the small white hands I saw to-day, would create
an envious feeling in more than one lady patroness of Almacks. I
particularly noticed one lady, apparently the wife of some Turk of
distinction, who was seated upon a splendid Persian carpet spread upon
the grass, and surrounded by fourteen young female slaves, whose
beautiful eyes were alone visible, the rest of their faces being closely
covered up. They appeared very fond of music, for they had two bands
singing and playing different airs at the same moment, both parties
contending which could scream the loudest. On returning towards the
landing-place, we met numbers of Greek ladies and gentlemen with guitars
and clarionets coming up to pass the evening in singing and dancing upon
the green turf.

As our caique again glided swiftly down the stream, we passed many
similar vessels, containing seven or eight Turkish women each, and up
went the yashmak at our approach. Boat loads of Perotes, with gay
turbans and toques, were also seen hastening to the festive scene; and,
on arriving at our homes, we found the churchyard empty, and all Pera
silent and tranquil, as if deserted by its inhabitants.

[Sidenote: DANCING DERVISHES.] _Tuesday, 14th._--Visited the mosque at
Pera, to witness the ceremonies of the dancing dervishes. This edifice
is built in the form of an octagon, having a gallery extending round the
interior on six of the sides, under which the public sit. In one of
these galleries hung the cloaks of the dervishes; and in another was
posted the music, consisting of a drum, Turkish flutes, and a dulcimer.
Outside the building on the left of the entrance, but only separated by
a trellis-work, is the women's receptacle. This was crowded, as was also
the part assigned to such as took no share in the ceremonies. The centre
of the mosque is railed off; and the chief priest, who wore a green
dress, with a white hat, partly covered by a green shawl, was seated
opposite the grand entrance on a red cushion, placed upon a carpet
spread upon the floor, which is of chestnut wood, polished to brightness
by the constant friction of the dervishes' feet. From the centre of the
roof, was suspended an octagonal bar of brass, to which lamps of
different sizes were attached, and from the galleries, which are
supported by pillars, hung several square pieces of cloth or
pasteboard, painted black, and inscribed with passages from the Koran.

I left my shoes at the entrance; and on gaining the interior of the
edifice, found the service had commenced. As each dervish entered, he
saluted the chief priest; besides whom, there were five other priests,
seated in various situations close to the railing. One, on the right of
the entrance, held a book, from which he chanted certain verses in a
monotonous voice; while the others sat silent and motionless, with their
eyes fixed on the ground. When he stopped, a slow and solemn air was
played upon the flutes, accompanied by the drum, which had an effect by
no means unpleasing; but in a few moments the other instruments
commenced a species of tune between a waltz and march, and all the
dervishes jumping up, the whole assembly followed each other slowly
round the enclosed space, led by the high priest. On arriving opposite
the seat of their leader, they bowed thrice to the ground, with their
arms crossed upon the breast, and on passing close to it, they stepped
by, with a stride and a whirl, and then resumed their march. After the
third performance of these absurdities, the high priest sat down, and
the music, which had hitherto continued playing the march, presently
struck into an air resembling a sauteuse, accompanied by the chanting
of several voices. The dervishes, having thrown off their cloaks, again
folded their arms across their breasts, and bowing three times,
re-commenced walking before the high priest, bending low as they passed
his seat, and kissing his hands, which were joined together. The
whirling at length began in reality: at first with folded arms, then
with one arm extended, the other slightly bent, and held so as to form
an obtuse angle at the elbow. Thus, with closed eyes and erect body,
these singular people whirled round and round on one leg, making a
_pirouette_ with the other, and proceeding by degrees round every part
of the enclosure, accelerating or retarding their movements as the music
and the chant became more or less animated. By looking at a stop watch,
I ascertained that on an average they turned sixty-four times in a
minute. After spinning round for about five minutes, at a signal from
the high priest, both music and dancers suddenly stopped, but
re-commenced in a few seconds, bowing as before. The third time, they
kept it up for nine minutes and three quarters; my brain was swimming
too, so much so, that I could hardly count their evolutions; and it is
extraordinary their heads should escape being affected in the same
manner. I noticed one little fellow who went round at an amazing pace.
The fourth and last time they whirled for five minutes and three
quarters, thus making in all

5 + 3 + 9¾ + 5¾ = 23½ x 64 = 1504 turns.

Having been highly amused with this extraordinary exhibition, I was most
anxious to ascertain when and where their brethren, the howling
dervishes, performed their antics; I found, however, that they had been
banished Stamboul and Pera, and now went through their orgies at
Scutari, but in secret, and very seldom.

[Sidenote: GREEK BOOKSELLER.] Thence I went to the shop of a Greek
bookseller in Galata, who has English and Italian as well as French and
modern Greek books for sale, all which pay an _ad valorem_ duty of three
per cent. I did not find any worth buying, except a description of the
manners, customs, and new regulations of Constantinople, up to 1832;
written by an Italian attached to the Sardinian mission, and published
in Genoa. The only Greek books were some wretched translations of French
tales, and of one or two German plays.

_Wednesday, 15th._--This morning we took Mustapha, once the consul's
janissary, and now his servant, as a guide to the curiosities on the
other side of the water. He is by birth a Swiss, who, after having
experienced various vicissitudes and adventures, was taken by pirates,
sold as a slave, turned Mussulman, and is now happy and contented in the
service of so good a master. Few English visitors who have remained any
time in Constantinople during the last fifteen years, have quitted it
without making the acquaintance of our friend Mustapha.

[Sidenote: MOSQUE OF SOLIMANIE.] The first object to which he conducted
us was the mosque of Solimanie, the largest and most elegant in
Stamboul; though it does not possess the same interest or renown as St.
Sophia, nor the beauty and lightness of that of Sultan Achmet. The outer
court is surrounded by fine old plane trees, and we looked into the
inner one, which is surrounded on three sides by cloisters, and several
antique pillars, with a fine ornamented fountain in the centre. On
entering by the principal door, we took off our shoes, which was no
hardship, the whole floor being covered with soft carpeting. The dome is
supported by four enormous pillars of grey granite, polished by age. I
was desirous to have measured them, but the priest or servitor, who
accompanied us, refused permission. From the ceiling of the aisles, and
around the dome, hung innumerable lamps of different sizes; an
octangular frame of iron, suspended under the dome, also supported
[Sidenote: SERASKIER'S TOWER.] an immense quantity about ten feet from
the floor. The aisles were filled with many little recesses, in which
were placed books on stands; and one of them was occupied by a Turkish
priest, who chanted some verses from one of these open volumes. Neither
ornaments nor pictures decorate the interior, all being plain and
simple, except that portion nearest Mecca, where an enormous wax candle
is placed on each side of a little niche in the wall. There is something
extremely impressive in the unadorned simplicity, vast extent, and
sombre aspect of this mosque, which is the only religious edifice in
Constantinople, that can be seen by a Christian without a firman; a
donation to the priest of thirty-five piastres being sufficient to admit
a large party. We now proceeded to the Seraskier's tower, situated in a
large court by the side of the palace of the Seraskier Pasha. In the
upper chamber a party of men are constantly stationed to watch for
fires, and, I believe also, to give notice of any unusual assembling of
the people. On the appearance of a fire, they sound the alarm by beating
gongs, and by despatching messengers to various parts of the city. From
the windows of this apartment, is a most perfect bird's eye view of the
whole capital and its vicinity. In the whole course of my travels, I
can recall but one prospect, whose exquisite loveliness affords a
similar combination of all the ingredients necessary to a perfect
landscape, and which I, in some degree, prefer, as presenting even a
still greater variety of beautiful objects,--I mean the view of Naples
from the hermitage on Vesuvius.

[Illustration: Etched by G. C. from a Sketch by the Author

The Burnt Pillar.

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

[Sidenote: BURNT PILLAR.] A short walk brought us to the Tchernberlé
Tasch, or burnt pillar, built of red porphyry, which has been cracked
and splintered by the numerous fires that have taken place around it;
and, to prevent its falling to pieces, it has been enclosed within a
sort of iron cage. It is ninety feet in height, and thirty in
circumference at the base. Of the inscription, only a few letters can at
present be made out. It originally ran thus:--

  [Greek: To theion ergon enthade phtharen chronô
   kainei manouêl eusebês autokratôr.]

Passing onwards, we came to a dark dismal place, called the Cistern of
the Thousand and One Pillars, a large reservoir for water, but now dry
and occupied by the winders of silk thread. Its extent is very great,
and the number of pillars far exceeds that above-mentioned. There is
also another cistern, but as the entrance is through a Turk's dwelling,
it cannot be visited except as a special favour, not always granted.
[Sidenote: HIPPODROME.] From this, we were led to the Atmeidan, or
place of horses, the ancient hippodrome; a large oblong area, on one
side of which is the beautiful mosque of Sultan Achmet, separated from
the open square by a handsome screen of masonry; over which a number of
plane trees hang their luxuriant foliage, and through its windows we
were gratified with a view of the court of the mosque. The Atmeidan is
famous as being the scene of countless insurrections and tumults; it was
the rendezvous of the turbulent janissaries; here they made their last
noble stand, and were hewn to pieces and swept down by the Sultan's
cannon and cavalry. Here too were held games and reviews, and here
stands the obelisk of Theodosius, the brazen serpents from Delphi, and
the lofty monument of Constantine, built of rough masonry, and supposed
to have been once covered with brass. It is ninety feet in height. The
obelisk was brought from Egypt and placed there by Theodosius, as
appears from the following inscription on the pedestal, which is now
covered up with earth, and the Turks will not allow of its being cleared

  Difficilis quondam Dominis parere serenis
  Jussus, et extinctis palmam portare tyrannis:
  Omnia Theodosio cedunt sobolique perenni;
  Terenis sic victus ego, duobusque diebus,
  Judice sub Proclo, superas elatus ad auras.

It measures sixty feet in height, and each of its faces is covered with
hieroglyphics. On the pedestal is a badly executed _alto relievo_,
intended to represent the victories of Theodosius. Between these two
monuments is the celebrated tripod from the island of Delphos; the heads
of the serpents of which it is composed are lost: one of them was cut
off by Sultan Mechmed with a single blow of his sword. From the number
of people that gathered about me, I had some difficulty in making a
drawing of these objects; and the soldiers from a neighbouring
guard-house really appeared to consider I was forming a plan to pocket
the columns and run away with them. Had not Mustapha been with me, it is
probable I should have been arrested, as a friend of mine was yesterday,
when he attempted to sketch Constantinople from Tophana. A superior
officer, however, soon ordered him to be released, and gave him two
soldiers as a protection whilst he finished his drawing. [Sidenote: ST.
SOPHIA.] Thence our course lay to St. Sophia, which is a confused heap
of unsightly buildings; the centre having enormous buttresses built
against it, and the dome is much too low in proportion to the great size
of this edifice. The principal entrance to the seraglio is also situated
in the square, of which St. Sophia occupies one side, the walls of the
palace another, and a row of small houses and coffee shops a third. In
the centre is a very beautiful fountain; which, though inferior in size
to that of Tophana, is much more richly ornamented.

[Sidenote: SERAGLIO.] The guard having allowed us to pass the gate, we
entered the first court of the seraglio--a large oblong enclosure,
formed by the Sultan's gardens, the inner gate, the grounds of the
serai, barracks, stables, and a portion of the outer wall. Within a
niche on the left-hand side of this entrance, the heads of rebellious
Pashas and other traitors are exhibited to the gazing multitude, and
among the more recent of those placed there, may be mentioned that of
Ali Pasha. The second gate, which is flanked by double towers, resembles
that of an ancient Gothic abbey; the interior is highly ornamented with
gilding and inscriptions in letters of gold; and a large gilt cipher of
the Sultan decorates the front. Our attempt to pass into the second
court was less successful: Mustapha being a great coward, he was afraid
to offer the sentinels a bribe; yet I have no doubt that the sight of a
gold dollar never fails to gain admission for the unbeliever, whether
Jew or Christian. Turning away from this forbidden paradise, we
proceeded to examine a fine old plane tree, in the trunk of which three
people live and keep a coffee-shop. A grove of plane, oak, chestnut, and
cypress trees, conducted us out by the lower gate, and we walked to the
sultanas' mosque, where the bodies of the late Sultan, and of the wives
of his two predecessors, lie in state. The present Grand Signior's
favourite sultana, and her son, also repose upon the same bier.
[Sidenote: TURKISH FUNEREAL POMP.] On looking through the window, we
distinguished the Sultan's coffin, deposited on a kind of throne, with
four large wax tapers burning around it, and covered with the most
splendid Cashmere shawls. All the other coffins were decorated in a
similar manner: those of the women being distinguished by having no
turban at the head; and the Fez, or Greek cap, with a feather and
diamond _aigrette_, lay on that of the Sultan's son. The court of the
Sultana Valide's mosque conducted us to the water-side; and, embarking
at the steps of the Balouk bazar, we glided swiftly across to Galata,
highly delighted with the novelty of the objects witnessed during our
day's excursion.

[Sidenote: COSTUME.] _Thursday, 16th._--The clothes' bazar attracted our
curiosity to-day, where, in a few minutes, a person may be rigged out,
either _à la Turque_, or as an Armenian, the whole dress costing about
270 piastres. A cloth cloak, a silk gown, a silk jacket, camlet
trowsers, yellow or red morocco boots, a shawl for the waist, with a
waistcoat, shirt, and a calpac or turban, form the dress of a gentleman
or merchant. The Jews wear a low black hat, round which is twisted a
white handkerchief, inscribed with some Hebrew sentences from their law.
The calpac of the Greek differs from that of the Armenian, by having a
hole at the top, out of which peeps a bit of red cloth. The Turks wear
yellow, Greeks and Armenians red, and Jews black, boots. The day was
finished at Mustapha's, the scent dealer; or, to describe him by his
real appellation, "Kortz Sultanée Amel Mehemet Said," as his card duly
setteth forth. There we generally took a luncheon of beed caimac, a
species of curd; or of mahalabé, a mixture of rice boiled to a jelly,
and eaten with ice and cream; at other times we discussed a large dish
of cabobs and a few glasses of lemonade. Occasionally our party
adjourned to the coffee-house built in his garden, where, under the
shelter of a delicious rose and jasmine bower, we spent the interval
between dinner in all the luxury of idleness, smoking and drinking

[Sidenote: ANECDOTE.] _Friday, 17th._--I visited a printing-office in
Galata, and saw the types of a work on the Greek church, some specimens
of music, and a few Turkish books. The types were cast in Paris, and
brought here at a great expense. The proprietors are now preparing a
Hebrew work for the press, which will take them two years to execute.
Went again in the afternoon to the Valley of Sweet Waters, where a
greater crowd had assembled than even on the former occasion. I walked
to the village, where there is a coffee-shop in a very agreeable
situation, overshadowed by plane trees, one of which is nearly as large
as that of the seraglio, and also quite hollow. In one part of the
canal, near the palace, where the water is very deep, the favourite
sultana of Selim drowned herself. She was young and exceedingly
beautiful, but grew so jealous of the attentions paid by her lord and
master to a Greek slave whom he had recently purchased, that she
determined on committing suicide. Accordingly, having succeeded in
eluding the vigilance of the guards and eunuchs, she one night escaped
from the palace; and having procured a large stone, she carried it to
the edge of the canal, and there fastened it to her person by means of
the Cashmere shawl which she wore round her waist. On her absence being
discovered next morning, the utmost consternation prevailed throughout
the harem; and her slaves and attendants trembled at the fate which
awaited them when the Sultan was informed of his favourite's escape. The
harem, the palace, the gardens, the whole neighbourhood, were instantly
searched, but in vain; no one had seen the sultana, and her absence
remained a mystery. The eunuchs were threatened with death, if she were
not found; and the horror of all was aroused by the suggestion that she
might possibly have eloped with some giaour[10], and several of the
slaves were sent to atone for their neglect with the forfeit of their
lives. In the mean time, the poor Sultan remained inconsolable: all his
former love returned, and the Greek slave was sent as a present to one
of the Pashas. At the expiration of a few days, as the disconsolate
Selim was seated smoking on the borders of the canal, the body became
detached from the stone, and rose to the surface of the water.
Overwhelmed by the heart-rending spectacle, which too well explained the
mystery of his beautiful queen's disappearance, he was with difficulty
prevented by his attendant slaves from throwing himself upon the corpse.
When he retired, it was taken out, and sent into Constantinople to be
buried. Thus ends this little episode in the life of the mighty Selim.

[Sidenote: IBRAHIM PASHA.] _Saturday, 18th._--I went up to Terapia in
the evening, and dined at the palace. Ibrahim's army is passing the
Taurus, and will soon be followed by its chief, who is taking the baths
near Kutahieh. It is perfectly true, that Greek pilots are on board the
Russian men-of-war, and that the Count Orloff has proposed to the Sultan
to man the Turkish fleet with Russian artillery-men; so little
dependence can be placed on their own sailors, should they come to blows
with France or England.

_Sunday, 19th._--This morning I went over to the Sultan's Valley, which
is kept by outposts of Turks and Russians, one of each nation mounting
sentinel together. The Russian has orders to instruct his Turkish
comrade in the manual exercise, and in marching, during the time they
are on duty. The poor Turks do not like it; for, when left to
themselves, they make but lazy guards.

The Captain of the Actæon considers that he has received a marked
affront from the Russian Commander-in-Chief. In consequence of his
invitation, he went to head-quarters, and sent in his name; but after
being kept standing for twenty minutes in the hall, among orderlies and
common soldiers, he came away in disgust. Next day the General, who was
probably a little alarmed, came on board to make an apology, saying the
whole matter originated in a mistake, and that the attendants were
ignorant of the rank of his English visitor. What! not recognise a
captain in his Britannic Majesty's navy, commanding a frigate which lies
moored within sight of the Russian army, when he visits its General in
full uniform, in his boat, and with his pennant displayed? I think it is
full time that these northern barbarians should be instructed, with the
point of the bayonet, in the respect due to a British officer. However,
it is to be hoped that such insolence will not long remain unpunished.

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN MILITARY PUNISHMENT.] In this beautiful valley there
is a kiosk of the Sultan, at present used as a paper-mill; and near the
landing-place stands a large house once occupied by an Englishman, sent
hither by the Sultan to establish a leather manufactory. It is now the
Russian head-quarters, the valley being their exercising ground. This
morning a Russian soldier was flogged at parade. I was not in time to
witness the punishment, but it was explained to me by one of the
midshipmen. The whole regiment was drawn up in two lines facing each
other, each man having in his hand a small twig or stick. The offender,
stripped of his jacket and shirt, was made to run the gauntlet through
the ranks, every man giving him a sharp cut as he passed, while the
officers and sergeants stood by to see that the blows were sufficiently
severe; and in case of any neglect, the delinquents are punished
themselves. The man roared like a bull, and seemed to suffer immensely.

[Sidenote: SULTAN'S VALLEY.] Under the pleasant shade of some remarkably
fine plane trees growing near to each other, close to the borders of a
stream, thousands of Turkish and Armenian, as well as Greek parties,
formerly came to spend the day during the summer months. This is all
over now: the presence of the Russians prevents a single pic-nic, and
the lovely valley is deserted. Crossing over to the European side, I
walked along the shore towards Buyukdere, and at the point of Kerridge
Bournu enjoyed a fine view of the entrance to the Black Sea, and the old
Venetian castles which rise so romantically on the opposite coast, a
little beyond the Giant's Mountain. The view in the Sultan's Valley is
very grand, and the undulating hills approach each other in a
picturesque manner, forming a wooded vista, terminated in the distance
by the arched aqueduct which carries the water across several deep
valleys from the bents near Belgrade to Constantinople. These bents are
large reservoirs, resembling artificial lakes, bordered by thick woods,
groves, and pasture land, and converting their immediate vicinity into a
beautiful and luxuriant landscape, while all around is barren and

[Sidenote: RUSSIANS AND TURKS.] _Monday, 20th._--I strolled about in the
Sultan's Valley till dinner-time; and on returning again in the evening
to play at cricket with the officers of the Actæon, I found all the
Russian cavalry horses had been turned out to graze. They are sorry
steeds, supplied for the Cossacks by the Sultan; they seemed, however,
to enjoy this liberty very much. Just before dusk, some Russian soldiers
came down to catch them, and we amused ourselves with observing their
motions. In vain they drove them from one side to the other, and into
all the corners of this extensive pasture-ground; it was of no use, they
would not be caught either by stratagem, or the temptation of corn. An
old white stallion seemed to be the prime devil of the lot; for the
moment the men got near, away he gallopped, kicking and flinging, with
all the others at his heels. The Turkish commmandant of the army
encamped near the Russians now came and sat down, and took a pipe. He
laughed heartily at the discomfiture of his Frankish allies; and when we
asked him how he liked them, (for he understood Italian, though he could
not speak it,) making every sign of contempt, he spat upon the ground,
pronouncing the word Rusky; as much as to say, he spat in their faces,
and called them some very unpolite names in Turkish. But the Inglez--oh!
and then he shook our hands--they were good fellows, he liked them
exceedingly. When our midshipmen visited the Russians, they did not
offer them any refreshment; but on their arrival at the Turkish
encampment they were immediately taken to the officers' tent, and
regaled with ices, coffee, pipes, lemonade, &c.; and it was with
difficulty that they got away from their hospitable entertainers. When
it became dark, there came down a reinforcement of Cossacks, and after a
short chase the horses were caught. [Sidenote: RUSSIAN HORN BANDS.] The
Russian and Turkish bands play every evening for a couple of hours. The
latter also chant hymns at meal-time and at sunset; and the sound of so
many voices, pealing forth these solemn and beautiful airs, and swelling
and modulating as the breeze wafts them over the waves, diffuses over
the mind a sensation of tranquillity which it is difficult for language
to describe.

_Thursday, 23d._--Went to the other side of Pera, to visit a garden
established by a Frenchman for vegetables and the cultivation of the
vine. He makes a delicious wine from the Chious grape, called
Altintash, resembling the white lachryma of Vesuvius, but neither so
strong nor so highly flavoured. He also manufactures an effervescing
liquor, in imitation of champagne, but very inferior to that sparkling
elixir, of which many of the Turks are, in secret, decided worshippers.

[Sidenote: ANECDOTE.] This evening, while sitting under the cypresses
near the walls of Galata, upon the grass-covered tomb of an old Turk,
our guide, Guiseppino, amused us with some Venetian tales, of which the
following is a specimen:--"Many years since, there arrived in Venice a
traveller of commanding exterior, and very magnificently dressed. He
appeared exceedingly inquisitive respecting the curiosities of the city,
and spent all his time in visiting the palaces, the museums, cathedrals,
&c. One day, he called a gondolier, desiring that he might be carried to
the church of a certain saint. The boat accordingly plied through
several canals, and pulled up, at length, near the stairs of a church.
The gentleman entered the building, but quickly returned, saying,--'That
it was not the church he sought.'--'Well, then,' replied the gondolier,
'we will try another.' In this way they visited half a dozen churches;
but the traveller was still unsatisfied. The gondolier was in despair:
he had been rowing to and fro, from one end of Venice to the other, for
the last four hours. At length he suddenly pulled up before a very
ancient and venerable building; the gentleman entered, but as quickly
came out again, with the same complaint. 'Not right this time?' said the
gondolier: 'Why this is the church of Tutti Santi[11]; and if your
patron saint is not here, by San Giacomo, he is in no other church of

[Sidenote: COLLEGE OF PAGES.] _Friday, 24th._--To-day I passed by the
ruins of the College of Pages, situated at the north end of Pera. Here
were educated, in various languages and accomplishments, the pages of
the Sultan,--selected from the sons of persons of the greatest
distinction among the Turks. Their education began about the age of nine
years, and continued till they were thought sufficiently instructed to
attend to the duties of their appointments about the Sultan's palace.
This noble structure was destroyed in the great fire; and will,
probably, never be rebuilt, unless some rich merchant purchases the
ground and materials, or some foreign ambassador receives it as a
present. Passed through the Christian burying-ground, which is adorned
with beautiful walks, overshadowed by cypresses; it is the favourite
winter promenade. Thence a steep descent leads to the Sultan's new
barracks; which are handsome square buildings, with regular windows, and
a turret at each angle. [Sidenote: SULTAN'S VISIT TO THE MOSQUE.] The
Sultan himself is now staying at his new palace in the neighbourhood of
Dolma Batché; and the streets of the village were gravelled for him to
go to prayers, which we were informed he would do at twelve o'clock.
From a dread of tumult or assassination, he never visits any mosque in
the city, contrary to the custom of his predecessors; and, for similar
reasons, he never announces to which he will go until the same morning,
and that as late as possible: in fact, time is only allowed for the
guards to assemble, and the ordinary preparations to be made for
receiving him.

[Illustration: Drawn & Etched by George. Cruikshank, from a Sketch by the

The Sultan going to Mosque.

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

At half past eleven we were enlivened by the distant sounds of "Zitti,
Zitti," played by a military band; and in a short time afterwards a
regiment marched by the coffee-house in which we were smoking, and drew
up on either side of the street, which extends from the new palace to
the mosque. The band was stationed about midway, and no one was allowed
to pass or remain standing. On taking our position in front of the crowd
at the appointed hour, a Turkish officer came up, and politely
addressed us in French, with an invitation to come within the file. He
led us some distance nearer the palace, and placed us under a doorway;
where we were joined by a German baron, who resides near the village,
and who appeared to be on very friendly terms with all the officers,
three of whom speak French. The one to whom we were indebted for our
present advantageous situation remained some time conversing with us. He
was a very handsome man, the son of a Georgian; and is esteemed a good
officer, being second in command, although only nineteen years of age.
He quitted us, to join a party of American ladies, who came within the
lines, and as soon as the Sultan had passed by, he ordered ices and
lemonade for them; and although he has never been out of Constantinople,
he behaved just as any well-bred European officer would have done under
similar circumstances. [Sidenote: ANECDOTE.] As we stood chatting
together, our German friend related a curious adventure which happened
to him last year:--He was out shooting behind the village, when his
Highness rode up, accompanied by two or three officers; and as it is
unlawful to appear in the Sultan's presence with fire-arms, the German
felt himself in a very embarrassed situation. However, he stood still,
taking off his hat. The Sultan, on passing, looked hard at him; and just
at that moment, a swallow, happening to fly towards the party, he
pointed to it, and said "Tirez!" The German, though in a great fright,
understood him perfectly: he fired, and, as luck would have it, killed
the bird, which fell at the head of the Sultan's horse. His Highness was
quite delighted, exclaiming, "Eh, eh," (good, good,) and desired one of
the attendants to enquire who the sportsman was, and where he lived;
after which he rode away. Next morning, a person attached to the court
came to the baron's house, with a present of china, flowers, and a purse
containing 5000 piastres, which his sublime Highness had condescended to
present to the successful shot. The baron requested the bearer to take
his compliments and thanks to his master, and say, that he was ready to
kill a swallow every day for the same reward.

[Sidenote: SULTAN'S VISIT TO THE MOSQUE.] Namik Pasha, who had arrived
from England, France, and Prussia only a few days before, now came to
tell us, that as it was past the usual time of the Sultan's going to the
mosque, he was afraid he would not come at all to-day; that he had left
him with Count Orloff, with whom he was in a towering passion, many
angry speeches having passed between the cunning diplomatist and the
enraged sovereign. However, soon after, the order to fix bayonets and
shoulder arms, both of which were very well executed, announced his
approach, and in a few minutes afterwards the band struck up his
favourite march. At the head of the procession were three led horses,
richly caparisoned, having saddle-cloths embroidered with gold and
precious stones, and bridles ornamented in a similar gorgeous style.
They were noble-looking animals, and seemed as if conscious of the
magnificence with which they were decorated. Next to these followed
about thirty officers, consisting of generals, colonels, and captains of
the fleet, walking two and two: they wore a sort of frock coat, with
that description of cap called a fez. [Sidenote: HIS PERSONAL
APPEARANCE.] After the ministers of state, came his Sublime Highness
himself on horseback, closely wrapped up in a greyish brown cloak, with
a collar of diamonds, emeralds, and rubies, arranged in the form of
flowers--the richest and most brilliant ornament I ever beheld. Like his
officers, he also wore a plain fez, to the silk tassel of which the
paper was still left attached, as is customary with the lower orders of
the people; this fashion, in fact, seems almost universal; and when the
paper is destroyed, a new tassel is put to the cap. It was drawn close
over his ears, and down to his large black eyebrows, and his beard hung
over the diamond clasp of the cloak. His face is long; his nose,
slightly arched, indicates talent and resolution; and his eye is
remarkably large, bright, and penetrating. We took off our hats as he
passed: he looked earnestly at us, without turning his head, and after
acknowledging the salute by a slight inclination of his body, again
addressed himself to Namik Pasha, with whom he had been conversing
before he came up to us. Another party of officers closed the
procession. The Sultan has the appearance of being about fifty-five
years of age; and his blotched face, and red nose, sufficiently indicate
a _penchant_ for the bottle: indeed, on the present occasion, he
displayed strong symptoms of being in what is called "a state of
liquor," as well as in a most particular bad humour. It is reported that
he and his sword-bearer get drunk together every day, and that he once
forced the Grand Mufti to drink half a bottle of Champagne, which he
refused at first, declaring that to do so was contrary to the religion
and ordinances of the Prophet. But the Sultan told him that he was
himself the Head of the Church, and that he would make a new ordinance,
bidding the Mufti swallow what was offered him, or take the
consequences of disobedience. Upon this the Chief Priest drank off the
potion, perhaps, after all, by no means new or unacceptable; and the
Sultan, turning to a certain officer of state, who had also refused the
wine on account of similar scruples, said, "Now then you may drink,
seeing that the Head of the Church and the Chief Priest have set you the

[Sidenote: NEW REGULATION SOLDIER.] In about a quarter of an hour the
Sultan returned in the same manner, and entering his palace, the
regiment marched off in good order. It was almost entirely composed of
boys; and though the whole body looked rather imposing when together,
yet individually they have by no means a military air or appearance.
Their uniform is extremely mean and unbecoming: it consists of a fez
cap, worn slouching over the eyes and ears; an ill-made jacket of coarse
blue cloth, faced and turned up with red; coarse white Russia duck
trousers, always exceedingly dirty; Wellington boots in the same
condition, into one of which the right leg of the pantaloon is generally
stuffed, while the left hangs in the ordinary fashion, or is turned up
over the ankle; the bayonet and cartouch box are both suspended at least
half a foot lower than they should be; and their linen and persons are
also disgustingly filthy. The whole of this description is by no means
an exaggerated sketch of the new regulation soldier--the hope of the
Sultan, and the terror--of whom? of himself. It is but justice, however,
to add, that the officers of this regiment presented a striking contrast
to their men, being all good looking, well dressed, and of a
soldier-like appearance; the band also was respectable, and executed
their different marches in a masterly style.

[Sidenote: PALACE OF THE BRITISH EMBASSY.] I returned by Tophana, where
there is a great mart for tobacco pipes in the vicinity of the fountain
before described. In the evening I went into the garden of the English
palace, which is very beautiful, with shrubberies, shady walks, and
bowers; but the building itself is in ruins, having been destroyed
during the late fire. Being quite isolated from any other dwelling, and
surrounded by a large garden enclosed with lofty walls, it was positive
negligence that caused its destruction. The ambassador, Sir Robert
Gordon, was up the Bosphorus, and his principal servant obstinately
refused to allow any one to enter the room where the fire had
originated, until it was too late. The damages are estimated at
20,000_l._, and perhaps the best thing that could now be done would be
to sell the materials, and either let the ground on building leases, or
dispose of it altogether. By either of these methods, a large sum would
certainly be realised, and with the produce a suitable house might be
purchased in Pera, when it is decisively ascertained that the Russians
are not to be the future masters of Constantinople; until then, it would
be useless to think of spending the money. In fact, there can be no
question that the ambassador ought to reside in Pera, in the winter
season, when the roads are often blocked up with snow, and the wind on
the Bosphorus so violent, that all communication by water, with the
villages far up the channel, is cut off; so that serious evils might
arise, not only from the distance, but occasionally from the
impossibility of claiming the ambassador's protection on any sudden
emergency. The Russians are building a splendid palace in Pera; that of
the Austrian mission was not injured; and the representatives of the new
Allies, England and France, are the only two who do not make Pera their
residence, much to the inconvenience of merchants, and all persons
connected with the embassy, particularly the members of the diplomatic

[Sidenote: ARM BAZAR.] _Saturday, 25th._--Went to the arm bazar, or
curiosity shop, which I found stored with a motley show of weapons,
dresses, ornaments, horse trappings, and armour, such as would make
George Robins's fortune, could he send his myrmidons of porters to lay
hands on all they could carry away. Helmets, spears, bucklers, bows,
battle-axes, swords, daggers, rifles, long guns; in a word, every
species of offensive and defensive weapon, from the common musket of the
English soldier to the stiff bow of the Persian, were here gathered
together from every kingdom of the East and West. [Sidenote: DAMASCUS
SWORD BLADES.] A fat Turk, squatting on his counter, tempts you, on one
hand, with a blade of the rarest Damascus steel, inscribed from hilt to
point with some verse from the Koran in Arabic letters of gold; such as
an invocation to the one God,--"Strength to the arm who wields the blade
in a righteous cause, and death to him it reaches," &c. Drawing the
sword from the gold-embroidered velvet scabbard, he rings it with his
nail, to convince you of its soundness and temper. [Sidenote: SCENE IN
THE BAZAR.] Cast your eyes in the opposite direction, and you may
observe the Armenian, in the next stall, winking and slily beckoning you
towards him. He smiles, should you condescend to notice him, but frowns
and shows impatience when you appear to disregard his attempts to seduce
you from his portly rival. The latter, finding you will not buy the
sword, displays his pistols, silks, mouth-pieces of tempting amber, and
appears determined that you shall purchase something; till at length,
his patience being fairly exhausted, he packs up his wares, and
surrenders you to the wiles of his now triumphant opponent, who feels
satisfied that he can make you take something off his hands, though the
Turk was unsuccessful. As most Englishmen appear to value swords, he
takes from his cupboard a black-looking, dust-covered, white-handled
weapon; and pushing aside his long robe with an air of the utmost
importance, he draws forth the blade, which proves to be a black
Khorassan, entirely destitute of ornament: he rings it, it returns a
silver sound; he points out the beautiful watering, the gradual
deepening of the colour from the edge to the back, and finishes by
swearing to you, whilst he looks towards the Armenians and Jew brokers
gathered around for their attesting nods, that it is the most exquisite
blade in Stamboul; that it will cut a lawn kerchief, thrown into the
air, into two parts, as clean as a pair of scissors. He then closes his
panegyric with the demand of, "How much will you give?" Scarcely waiting
for a reply, he throws it aside, as if of no value; and, in imitation of
his neighbour the Turk, endeavours to keep your curiosity awake, by
placing all his wares before you. [Sidenote: JEW BROKERS.] The instant
you turn from the disappointed merchant, you are assailed by twenty Jew
brokers at once, who, having espied their quarry from afar, have
assembled from all quarters of the bazar, and, like a flock of vultures,
are waiting near to devour you, congratulating themselves on your
unwillingness to buy of the cunning Armenian. One attacks you in bad
Italian, another in modern Greek, interlarded with a few words of
unintelligible English or French. Each is master of a stall; where,
according to his own account, you can purchase whatever you want at the
greatest advantage, though, as yet, they know not what that is, even if
you do yourself. Thus, like Actæon, the unfortunate stranger is exposed
to the chance of being torn to pieces by the dogs who profess to call
him master, and to do his utmost bidding.

The bazar is always crowded with buyers, sellers, and idlers, so that it
costs some little squeezing and pushing to get through its various
passages. When a large purchase is contemplated, or if the seller be an
Armenian or Greek, he will adjourn with you to the neighbouring
coffee-house, and there, over a pipe and a cup of coffee, the bargain is
concluded on much better terms than in public, where, possibly, the
merchant's pride would not relish the exposure of abating some hundred
piastres, and where the sharks of brokers might lay claim to a good
recompense, for bringing the _Ingles capu dou_ to be plucked.

[Sidenote: INTERIOR OF THE BAZARS.] In the bazar the noise is deafening
from the screams of the disputing parties, and the vociferating of
prices by those who have articles for sale. It is a sort of Babel in
miniature, where Jews and brokers push by you every instant, hastily
shuffling along, and loaded with some piece of second-hand finery to be
put up at auction; such as, for instance, an incense salver, a piece of
Persian silk, an Albanian rifle, an old silk or velvet robe, embroidered
with gold, the property of some gay Turkish lady, who having exhausted
her purse the day before in a party of pleasure to the Keathane "Sweet
Waters," wishes to replenish it by the sale of a portion of her
wardrobe. To these may be added, amber mouth-pieces, bundles of long
pipe-sticks, a lot of worn-out clothes, a Persian battle-axe, China
ornaments for scents, coffee cups with their silver filigree stands, a
Cashmere shawl, &c. Each seller bawls out the last bidding for his
separate commodity in the highest note of which his voice is capable;
and as all are pitched in different keys, the stranger is soon driven
forth to seek a purer and more quiet retreat, either within the gold and
silver embroidery bazar, or in that of the Broussa silks, close by.

[Illustration: Drawn & Etched by George Cruikshank from a Sketch by the

Slave Market, Constantinople.

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

[Sidenote: SLAVE MARKET.] Quitting this scene of tumult, I visited a
place of a very different character,--the slave market, situated in a
square yard, three sides of which are occupied by low stone buildings,
with wooden sheds projecting in front. They were divided into rows of
cells, each having a window and door opening into the wooden enclosure
just mentioned. Within these dens,--and they exactly resemble the cells
usually occupied by wild beasts,--a "crowd of shivering slaves" were
seen either penned up within the inner apartment, or lying about, like
cattle, in the open space in front. They appeared to be all
Nubians,--black, dirty, and clothed in ragged blankets. Born to no other
inheritance but slavery, they seemed wholly unconscious of their
degraded state; and continued chattering unconcernedly, and, to all
appearance, very happy. As I stood gazing on the novel scene, the
ruffian keeper (and never did a vile, debasing occupation stamp its
character more indelibly on the physiognomy of man) led one of the black
victims forth, to meet the speculating caprices of a haggard old
Turkish woman. He proceeded to point out her good qualities, and to
descant on the firmness of her muscles, the robustness of her limbs, and
her mature age; at the same time pinching her tender flesh, by way of
proving the truth of his assertions, till the poor creature shrieked out
with agony. He then tore down her eye-lids, to exhibit the healthiness
of her eye-balls; and wrenched open her mouth, to prove, by ocular
demonstration, that he practised no deception in speaking of her age.
The old woman herself examined her all the time, and haggled, as to the
price, like a butcher when purchasing an ox in the cattle market. As I
witnessed all this, my heart sickened, and I turned with loathing from
the disgusting spectacle. Yet the poor negress was wanted only for a
domestic slave, and would, probably, be kindly treated, when once the
property of the old hag, who, I believe, purchased her at last for 1000
piastres, or fifty dollars. Indeed the girl appeared to be conscious
that the change would be advantageous to her, from the meekness with
which she bore the treatment of her persecutors. Proceeding a little
further on, we observed, sitting at the window of one of the cells, a
solitary female, whose head was covered with a linen veil. On hearing
our approach, she looked at us through its folds; in an instant after,
the covering was removed, and a pair of brilliant, dark eyes shed their
lustre upon us. Nowadays a white slave is seldom found in the market,
the Russians protecting the Circassian and the Georgian, and the French
and English the Greek. When they do appear, they are generally disposed
of at a high price. [Sidenote: GEORGIAN SLAVE.] This beautiful captive,
who proved to be a Georgian, was neither bashful nor timid. She saluted
us with smiles, severing her raven locks, and trying to captivate the
spectators, by making her beauty appear to the greatest advantage.
However, it did not seem to possess any power over the Turks; and as to
the Christians, they are not allowed to purchase slaves publicly, though
sometimes it is done indirectly, and by the assistance of some friendly
Osmanli. I saw but three or four men-slaves, with a few boys, all
Nubians, and, like their female companions, in a dirty, miserable
condition. They were chained together, two and two, by the ankles.
Having now satisfied my curiosity in regard to this much talked-of but
loathsome spot, I was most glad to hear the proposition that we should
adjourn to Mustapha's. From him we learned that the Georgian beauty had
been exposed to sale for several days; but that no one had offered to
purchase her, the sum demanded being exorbitant. Her proprietor was a
rich man, and could afford to wait until some one consented to put down
the 2500 piastres at which he valued her.

[Sidenote: TURKISH CONFECTIONERY.] Passing through the old-clothes'
bazar, the Monmouth Street of Stamboul, we came to a range of stalls
occupied by the engravers and cutters of precious stones. Many talismans
were offered to us, set very neatly in blood-stone, carnelian, and lapis
lazuli. The day was wound up with the important business of tasting the
different varieties of confectionery to be found in a large, handsome
shop near the Balouk bazar. All were luscious, and many, particularly
the preserved rose leaves, were even delicate. We partook of some thirty
or forty different sorts; in which flowers, scents, fruits, and gums
were mixed with sugar, until of the consistence of damson cheese. The
Turks eat a vast quantity of these cloying sweetmeats, after which they
drink abundance of sherbet. A glass of good brandy, however, would, in
my opinion, be a much better corrective.

[Sidenote: ARMENIAN VISITORS.] _Sunday, 26th._--Went up to Terapia this
morning, and spent the day in wandering through the Sultan's Valley,
under the superb plane trees, and returned to dine on board the Actæon.
After dinner, a party of young Armenians came on board, accompanied by
their tutor. They were sons of a man of distinguished rank among his
countrymen, residing on the Bosphorus; and one of them, the eldest,
about eighteen years of age, was so fat, round, and sleek, that we all
decided him to be what Baba threatened to make poor Juan. The other two
brothers were very fine intelligent lads, and there was also a cousin
with them, a heavy, shy, youngster. The tutor, who was a young man of
about twenty-two, spoke French, Italian, English, and Latin, fluently.
His pupils, likewise, understood a little English, and French uncommonly
well. They were delighted with their reception, and remained a long time
at table in the gun-room, drinking their wine with much relish, and
seeming to prefer it to coffee, especially the younger boy, who, had he
been permitted, would have willingly finished a whole bottle to his own
share. On taking leave, they invited us all to their father's residence;
but we never availed ourselves of the invitation, possibly because we
discovered that they had no sisters; and the inside of the black house,
below Jené Keni, was in itself an insufficient attraction, without the
chance of getting a glimpse of a fair Armenian girl, divested of her
odious gashmak, and the form-concealing cloak.

The evening was lovely, and my sail down to Pera delightful: no sound
broke upon the ear, save the rippling of the current against the caique
as it glided lightly along, like the bird, which skims closely over the
surface of the ocean, and appears to bathe its plumage in the waves,
though in reality without wetting its crescent wings.

[Sidenote: ORIENTAL COSTUME.] _Monday, 27th._--Strolled again in the
bazar: this word means barter, or the act of bargaining for the sale or
purchase of any commodity; and it is in them that all the retail trade
of Constantinople is carried on. As these cloistered passages exclude
the rays of the sun, they are cool and pleasant places to lounge in,
except that the pavement is usually in a very dilapidated state. The
merchants themselves present an interesting spectacle, each wearing the
proper costume of his respective country, which, with the motley garb of
the crowd incessantly passing to and fro, amuses the stranger's eye with
a curious and almost infinite variety of dress and appearance. For the
convenience of those who arrive periodically at Stamboul from the most
distant portions of the empire, in caravans, there are large khans
provided; which, being built entirely of stone, are fire-proof, and
afford ample accommodation for the merchants with their attendants and
property. [Sidenote: TURKS.--ARMENIANS.--GREEKS.] Yonder sits the Turk,
grave and taciturn: his goods are spread before him on his counter, and
samples hang around in neat array; but satisfied with this, and trusting
to their intrinsic value to recommend them, he smokes with a haughty
air, and disdains to utter a single word to arrest the stranger's
passing steps. Should you question him about the price, and attempt to
cheapen his merchandise, the answer will be comprised in two words; and
if the abatement be again proposed, he replies with an economical "No,"
and a whiff of smoke, after which he again relapses into his former

That bearded elder, seated on a low stool with the dark clouds of
thought and mental calculation visible on his countenance, is an
Armenian. Though he will submit to a diminution of his price, he is
honest; and though a man of few words also, yet is he civil without
affectation, and persuasive from the apparent sincerity of his

[Sidenote: JEW INTERPRETERS.] Their neighbour, however, makes ample
amends for the taciturnity of both. He is a Greek, and you may hear him
at the other extremity of the bazar. The most laboured efforts of the
rhetorician bear no comparison with the honied, artful speeches, and the
gay and cheerful air by which he detains, wheedles, and finally
succeeds in obliging the passer by to purchase, or at least examine the
contents of his stall. Observe yon poor devil, dragged first this way,
then thrust back again, trying in vain to still the tempest which rages
around him, by speaking half a dozen languages in a breath. He is an
interpreter, or go-between in a purchase, and seems torn to pieces in
the whirlwind of voices which assail him from the disputing parties, in
each of whose languages he tries to explain; but, poor patient Jew! you
never could speak any of them intelligibly, and your nasal twang, and
drawling accent, so disguises what you do say, that nothing but a
miracle could make you understood. The screams, the grimaces, the
gestures which these people exhibit, during their unavailing efforts to
render themselves understood, appear inexpressibly ludicrous to the
indifferent spectator, and their perseverance is still more
extraordinary, since it rarely happens that their best endeavours are
repaid by any thing better than reproaches, kicks, and imprecations.

[Sidenote: TURKISH CIVILITY.] Our old friend Mustapha reposes so much
confidence in the honour of an Englishman, that this morning he offered
to lend me any sum I wished, with no other security than my simple
word. In order to convince me of his ability to make good this promise,
after removing a stone from the floor, he unlocked an iron trap-door,
and showed me a mine of gold pieces concealed below. He was delighted
with a rough sketch I made of him; indeed, many circumstances go to
prove that the fanatical aversion of the Turks to portraits and pictures
is much on the decline, notwithstanding all representations of the human
figure are strictly prohibited by the Mahomedan law. The Sultan has had
his likeness taken twice already, and he is going to sit a third time to
an English artist of the name of Atkins.

_Tuesday, 28th._--A ship arrived from Malta to-day, bringing
intelligence that the formidable English fleet destined to join the
French squadron might soon be expected in the Dardanelles. All Pera is
in raptures at this news, and there is now some hope that the Russian
Bear will be forced to draw in his claws.

[Sidenote: DECREASE OF FANATICISM.] I walked about Stamboul to-day, and
experienced much civility from the Turks, who took infinite trouble to
answer all my enquiries. When I made them understand by signs that I
wished to cross the Horn, many left their little stools and walked some
distance to put me in the right course. How changed is their conduct in
this respect from what it was at no very remote period, when a
Christian hardly dared be seen in the streets, and when the Turk, for
mere sport, thought nothing of drawing a pistol and shooting at any
Frank whom he happened to observe looking out of his window; and not
only the foreign merchant, but even the consul, was obliged to have a
guard of janissaries to attend him from his house to his office. At that
time, too, the wealthy Christian, in passing through the streets of
Stamboul, was often stopped and compelled to sweep the muddy crossing;
and even the dogs were allowed to worry him, without his daring to beat
them off. Happily those days of fanatical intolerance are for ever
passed; and the irresistible march of civilisation, by gradually
weakening his prejudices, has humanised even the intolerant and
ferocious Mussulman.[12]

[Sidenote: CASHMERE SHAWLS.] _Thursday, 30th._--To-day a man brought for
sale a quantity of Persian silk, which was very soft and beautiful, and
the colours were bright and well arranged; he had also some black
Cashmere shawls with variegated borders: though the patterns looked
handsome, they were of inferior qualities, and not to be compared with
the French and Scotch imitations. Not being inclined to purchase any, I
posted off to the khan, where the Angora shalée is sold, and saw some
beautiful specimens of this soft and warm manufacture, whose fine silky
texture renders it a great object of commerce for ladies' dresses: the
price is about 300 piastres for eight pics, which is the requisite

[Sidenote: TURKISH BATH.] I returned to Pera to take the hummum or bath,
the one there being very clean, quiet, and well managed. A narrow
platform, raised about three feet from the ground, and covered with
cushions, runs round the whole of the first chamber, which is lighted
from above by a glazed cupola; and a fountain of clear water playing
continually in the centre, spreads a delicious coolness throughout. As
soon as we had mounted the stage, one of the bath-men offered carpets
and cushions, but my companion refused them, for the plague is often
communicated by using these _pro bono publico_ comforts; and a Perote
lives in constant dread of this terrible malady. After undressing, we
hung our clothes on pegs, and covered ourselves with a linen towel,
devoted to that laudable purpose, and which, if neglected in the
slightest degree, calls forth the most energetic remonstrances from the
old Turk, who sits smoking near the fountain.

The wooden pattens or slippers used by the bathers were arranged on the
steps by which we mounted the stage, and I had several narrow escapes
from being prostrated on the marble pavement ere I reached the small
door leading into the hummum; so difficult do the uninitiated find the
use of these wooden bridges, which are clumsy, heavy, and slippery as
skates. I shuffled along very awkwardly, much to the amusement of three
sedate old gentlemen, who were puffing and melting from the effects of a
long sojourn in the heated atmosphere of the inner chamber. The first
hot room was rather pleasant; and after remaining there a few moments,
to break ourselves in for the furious attack on the pores to be expected
in the next, we entered the second chamber, and again pushed on into the
third, where the sensation, though at first unpleasant, gradually became
delightful. Coffee and pipes were now brought in; and sitting down on a
low marble bench, we consigned ourselves to the influence of the melting
atmosphere, thinking of the unhappy condition of the mutton-chop, when
it exclaimed in a piteous voice to the gridiron, "I am all of a
perspiration." There were several other bathers undergoing this process
of fermentation; and when the coffee was finished, and the pipe laid
aside, two fellows placed me gently on my back, and commenced rubbing,
squeezing, and twisting my arms, ribs, and legs till I thought every
joint would be dislocated. I soon felt satisfied with this sort of
discipline, though, upon the whole, the sensations were rather
disagreeable than painful. The room where we underwent the operation is
an octagon, with an arched roof, into which light is admitted through a
number of bulls' eyes, or knots of glass; and a marble basin is fixed
against the wall on each of its eight sides, into which two pipes, with
stop-cocks, admit both hot and cold water. With this you deluge yourself
by means of a large metal ladle chained to the wall; or it is done by
the bath-man, should you prefer the assistance of another. Within this
chamber was a smaller one, containing similar basins, and to one of
these I moved, followed by one of the men, who, after lathering me from
head to foot with a sort of slimy caustic soap, scrubbed me down with a
brush made of aloe shreds. Having overwhelmed me once more with cold and
hot water, and given a finishing pull or two at my limbs, he left me to
duck myself, if I thought fit; but I had had quite enough, and hurried
back into the second chamber. Here I was enveloped in hot towels, one
being wound round my head, another round each leg, &c., and in this way
I returned to the first court, where I mounted the stage, and sat down
to dry, smoking a good half hour before I resumed my clothes. Instead of
being exhausted, as might have been expected, I felt highly refreshed,
and grew delightfully cool in a short time, though I fancied I had lost
some pounds of flesh.

As regards the natives of the East, bathing can scarcely be styled a
luxury; to them, it is really indispensable; for as they do not change
their clothes even at night for months together, in fact, not until worn
out, they would be otherwise insufferable beasts; but by frequenting the
bath every day, or every other day, and performing the ablutions imposed
on them in the Koran, with their quiet sedate mode of life, they are
actually rendered very cleanly animals. The women have the use of the
baths in the afternoon, when they assemble in crowds, and all the
scandal and news of the town is circulated, marriages concluded, and the
secret intrigues of the parties are reciprocally detailed; in short,
every thing which may be supposed to be brought on the tapis in an
exclusive meeting of the fair sex. Nature is every where the same; and I
presume, whether in a bath at Stamboul, a Parisian saloon, or a
drawing-room in London, a similar love of gossip is their distinguishing
characteristic. Almost every quarter of Stamboul is furnished with its
baths or hummums; and the houses of all rich Turks possess this
desirable luxury, which is used by the male part of the family in the
morning, and by the females afterwards. The plan on which they are
constructed is the same throughout the East: in them shaving is
universally performed; the hair is dyed, the beard is made to assume a
beautiful glossy black; and the depilatory pincers and ointments of the
ladies are applied to the purposes for which they are designed. The bath
I used was opposite the sherbet vender, on the hill of Pera, who is so
well described in "The Armenians" of Macfarlane; and whose little
fountain of water, flowing through machinery, and setting wheels,
circles, and bells all in motion together, is no slight decoy to the
thirsty passenger. I have read "The Armenians" with great pleasure. The
description of the _locale_, as well as of the manners, customs, and
general appearance of the native and foreign inhabitants of
Constantinople, is given with admirable fidelity; in short, no modern
work with which I am acquainted presents a more lively and faithful
picture of this queen of cities.

[Sidenote: EASTERN STORY-TELLER.] _Friday, 31st._--Instead of making an
excursion to the Sweet Waters, I went with my friend the American
secretary to visit the coffee-houses in the Armenian quarter, where an
improvisatore exhibits his talents every holyday. Immense crowds of
respectable Turks assemble there to listen to the narrations of this
accomplished story-teller; and it is even said that the Grand Signior
himself is often present as an auditor in disguise. In all the
coffee-houses there were concerts of vocal and instrumental music; the
former consisting of songs or chants performed by a number of voices
together, or else one man sang a single verse, to which all the others
responded by way of chorus. Occasionally they varied their performances
by singing alternate verses of the same song. We sat in the open air, on
a long pier of wood built out into the sea, where there were hundreds
besides, perched upon low stools, smoking, or eating delicious ices and
mahalabé, and laughing and talking with more vivacity than I could have
expected in beings generally so taciturn, and so absorbed in the
contemplation of their own importance. At last, a man came to the door
of the largest coffee-room and clapped his hands, when the Turks
immediately moved into this apartment, in which seats were arranged in a
semicircular form one above the other, as in a theatre. A portion of the
floor, in front of the benches, was occupied by low stools, probably
reserved for visitors of distinction; and close to the wall was a
rostrum and a large easy arm-chair, on one side of which stood a little

[Sidenote: MATTHEWS AT CONSTANTINOPLE.] Our Oriental friends behaved
with much politeness: for, perceiving from our European costume that we
were strangers, they offered us places in front of the stage; and after
a few minutes' delay a man entered, and was handed up to the platform
and chair amidst a buzz of universal applause. In his hand he carried a
small stick, and in gait, physiognomy, and manner bore a singular
resemblance to our English Matthews. He was dressed in a frock coat, now
so generally worn in Constantinople, and wore, on one of his fingers, a
most superb brilliant ring, which, it is said, was presented to him by
the Sultan, as a mark of his especial approbation. A profound silence
prevailed among the company the moment he made his appearance; every one
seeming desirous to be amused, and most anxious to catch every word that
fell from his lips. [Sidenote: ORIENTAL JOHN TROT.] No story-teller of
Stamboul had ever enjoyed so much fame and popularity as this Turkish
Matthews, who, rising from his seat and making three very profound
obeisances to the company, commenced his "At Home" with a series of
imitations, in which he personated a Turk from Aleppo, the Yorkshire or
Calabria of the East. This Oriental John Trot, is represented as setting
out on his journey to see the world and make his fortune; and with this
intent visits various places. On one occasion, being mistaken for a
Pasha in disguise, he is every where feasted, and treated with the most
respectful attention, until the real truth being discovered, he is
bastinadoed, spit upon, plucked by the beard, and, in short, maltreated
in a thousand different ways. At last he finds his way to Stamboul, and
manages to obtain an interview with his Sublime Highness; after which he
visits England, France, &c., and on his way back is taken by a pirate,
who carries him to the coast of Africa. During this compulsatory voyage,
he describes himself as affected with the most horrible sea sickness;
and here his representation of a person labouring under that detestable
malady was so accurate, that I almost fancied myself again in the
cockpit of the Actæon, and all the terrors of the voyage across the
Adriatic arose fresh to my imagination. After many other adventures, he
returns safe to [Sidenote: INGENIOUS MIMICRY.] Aleppo, his native city,
no richer than he set out; but, like the monkey who had seen the world,
"full of wise saws," and strange assertions. His hairbreadth escapes,
the unlucky scrapes he gets into, the blunders he is incessantly
committing from his imperfect knowledge of the languages of the various
nations among whom he is thrown, the continual equivoque and play upon
words, his absurd misconceptions of the orders he receives, his
buffetings, bastinadoes, feasts, imprisonments, and escapes, the odd
satirical remarks elicited by the different objects, places, and strange
fashions he encounters,--all afforded opportunities to the ingenious
mimic for displaying the versatility of his powers. The changes, too, of
voice, manner, look, gesture, suitable to the various characters he
assumed, were infinitely ludicrous and entertaining. In this respect he
was little, if at all, inferior, to his mirth-inspiring brother of the
Adelphi; in proof of which, I need only state, that, though utterly
unacquainted with his language, and enabled to follow the thread of the
story only by the hurried explanations of Hodgson, I sat listening and
laughing with the greatest satisfaction for more than two hours, without
feeling my attention at all beginning to flag. [Sidenote: A DELIGHTED
AUDIENCE.] As to the Turks, they were literally convulsed with
laughter; shouting, screaming, and uttering a thousand exclamations of
delight; and more than once it was evident, from their uproarious mirth,
that he had succeeded in satirising the peculiarities of some well-known
individual. At every pause in the story--very necessary for the actor,
who was often exhausted by the violence of his gesticulations--wooden
trays were handed about, and every one was expected to contribute a few
paras. Of course the liberality of the audience was proportioned to the
gratification they received; and on the present occasion he, no doubt,
experienced substantial proofs of their approbation in a pretty
considerable harvest of silver pieces. I could have remained with
pleasure to hear another tale, but the heat was overpowering, and my
friend also seemed anxious to get away; so we quitted the room with our
risible muscles somewhat sore from long-continued exertion.

The refreshing coolness of the sea breeze induced us to hire a caique,
and we coasted along towards the Seraglio Point. The walls on this side
of the triangle, which encloses Constantinople, are, perhaps, the most
ancient of all, and remains of former splendour are every where seen
intermingled with the ordinary materials of which they are composed.
Capitals of superb workmanship, friezes, and columns, are not only
embedded in the masonry, but thousands of pillars piled one above the
other form the foundations, in many parts, which may be plainly
distinguished beneath the transparent waves.

[Sidenote: BOOK MARKET.] _Saturday, June 1st._--Notwithstanding it
rained heavily this morning, I went over to Stamboul to see what I could
pick up in the Sahof Charshousi, or book-market. This bazar is very
quiet, as befits a temple devoted to literature, and most of the
merchants are old fellows with spectacle on nose, who sit in a corner of
their shop-board, and pass the time in poring over the Koran, or some of
the thousand and one commentaries written upon it. Their books and
manuscripts are piled up without order, and they seem never to know
where to put their hands upon any work which may be demanded. There was
an infinite number of manuscripts of Persian poetry, and I bought
several beautifully illuminated almanacks; but if, while examining
these, I approached a volume of the Koran, or, indeed, any religious
book, they either snatched it away, or interposed themselves in such a
manner, that I could not touch the object of this extraordinary

[Sidenote: CURIOUS MANUSCRIPTS.] I bought one book, which the owner said
was a treatise on mathematics; it however appeared to me to be more
like a genealogical tree, and so it turned out. My friend Hodgson, who
is well versed in the Oriental languages, pronounced it to be a
Silsileh-nameh, or genealogy of the Ottoman emperors from Adam to the
present Sultan; a work of extreme rarity, and the most complete he had
ever seen. Through his assistance I procured a very good copy of the
Koran, and also a firman, signed by Sultan Selim, granting permission to
a rich Turk to bequeath his fortune as an endowment for four priests, on
condition that they employed themselves in sweeping the mosque at Mecca.
This document, which is very long, is beautifully written on gold, and
is altogether a very splendid specimen of Oriental penmanship. I also
bought some Turkish spelling-books, very tastefully painted and
ornamented, such as are used in the schools.

_Monday, 3d._--As the heat of the weather begins to be oppressive, my
companion and myself have determined to remove to Terapia, where we
have, after some difficulty, engaged a house close to the back gate of
the English palace, and commanding a fine view of the Bosphorus. This
morning we took possession of our abode, which is furnished by its
proprietor, Mauvromati, with all we required; and we have hired one
Demetrio, a most obliging, clever fellow, who speaks Persian, Turkish,
Greek, French, and English; besides these accomplishments, he is an
excellent cook.

The mids of the Actæon found a name for the establishment immediately:
pipes, porter, bread and cheese, and whisky toddy, became the order of
the day, and night, too; and these jovial youths have transferred their
berth to the "Jolly Landsmen."

[Sidenote: NAVAL BANQUET.] But there was another inducement to move to
Terapia; for the midshipmen of the Actæon gave their brother officers of
the French frigate Galatea a dinner, in return for one to which they had
been invited. The starboard side of the main deck was partitioned off by
sails, and converted into a very handsome cabin, which was hung with a
drapery of the flags of all nations, except the Rusky, whom we
unanimously voted unworthy to hold companionship with the Jack and the
Tricolor, which, with the Turkish blood-red flag, formed a handsome
canopy at the head of the table. The ambassador and the captain lent
their plate, and the ship's cooks were put under the orders of the
palace chef. The pièces montées, sweetmeats, &c. were under the
direction of the ambassador's Italian confectioner; the wines were
partly from the embassy cellar, and partly from the captain, and the
renowned Stampa of Galata. Plenty of volunteers from the marines and
sailors joined the ship's boys as attendants; so that altogether, the
affair was splendidly got up, and did honour to the British mids. Our
dinner was a capital one; for the cook, fired with national emulation,
surpassed all his previous efforts, and, in consequence, the table was
covered with the rarest delicacies that art and nature could supply; the
dessert consisted of all the rich and exquisite fruits which this sunny
clime and fertile soil produce in an almost endless variety; and of ices
and Champagne there was no lack. Twenty-six sat down to the sumptuous
repast; and when the cloth was removed, the wine circulated briskly,
while the bond of amity between the French and English sailor, was
strengthened by the interchange of many a loyal toast and happy
well-timed allusion to the brave and martial character of the two
nations; nor was music wanting to complete our joyous revelry: the whole
budget of lower deck songs was completely exhausted; the guests
contributing their quota of _chansons à boire_, &c. to the general
hilarity; and "God save the King" and "Rule Britannia" were succeeded by
the "Parisienne" and the "Marseilloise." Thus was the party bravely kept
up till about midnight, when twenty out of the number, though sailors,
were "half-seas over;" and though the sea was, in reality, as smooth as
a lake, they imagined themselves tossing in some heavy swell, bidding
their companions remark how dreadfully the ship pitched and rolled, and
declaring unanimously that a retreat into the hammocks was next to an
impossibility. Three of our ancient and hereditary foes were borne (not
steadily, I trow) to the ship's side, and gently lowered from the
gangway, 'mid tears of joy; dead,--but not from piercing of cruel shot,
nor from "ghastly wound of glittering steel:" no, they were laid
prostrate by rapid discharges from the circling bottle, and the
overpowering draughts of glorious red hot "bishop." Being at length all
safely stowed in the Actæon's jolly-boat,--for in what other could so
noble a band of topers have been appropriately embarked?--

  "They were row'd to their ship,
   By the mess they had dined with."

In returning to the Actæon, after a game of cricket in the Sultan's
Valley, we approached as close as possible to head-quarters, where the
Russian and Turkish bands were playing. The Russians often sang between
the airs; and some two or three hundred voices joining in chorus, during
the stillness of evening, produced a very impressive effect. Parties of
the soldiers were engaged in dancing; and, in fact, it seemed to be a
gala day, for there was a display of fireworks, and an illumination
throughout the camp in the evening.

[Sidenote: SEVEN TOWERS.] This spectacle, which had all the air of
enchantment, was seen to great advantage from the quay at Terapia. It
continued to a late hour; and the inhabitants of that quarter assert it
to have been merely a _ruse_, to occupy the attention of the idle and
inquisitive, who might otherwise be spying about and discover the other
and more serious game going on behind the Point, where soldiery are
daily landed from the fleet, and the small craft which come in from the
Black Sea. The stratagem is a good one, and I dare say some hundreds of
men will be added to the encamped army, while certain unconscious
diplomatists are sipping their coffee, and complacently gazing at these
fiery devices.

_Thursday, 6th._--Jeddi Calé, or the Seven Towers, may be considered as
the Bastile of the East. They were erected by the immediate successors
of Constantine the Great, to strengthen the fortifications at one of the
angles of the wall which surrounds the city, but in succeeding ages were
converted into a formidable state prison. This cluster of forts was
originally five in number, until Theodosius, in order to commemorate his
victory over Maximus, erected a triumphal arch, which being flanked by
towers, the structure thenceforward received the appellation which it
now bears. In 1768, one of the most ancient of these castles fell down,
and its majestic ruins afford ample proof of the vast solidity of the
masonry. Each tower is about 200 feet high, and the walls which enclose
them are double, and enormously thick, being constructed of immense
blocks of stone; but since the invention of gunpowder they are no longer
considered impregnable. This edifice, after being first used as a
barrack for the janissaries, was converted into a prison, in which,
contrary to the law of nations and every principle of justice, the
minister of any power against whom the Sultan happened to declare war,
was immured, until the termination of the quarrel.

This shameful and barbarous violation of the usages which prevail in
every other European government, has at all times been regretted by the
respectable Turks, who acknowledge it to be a base and disgraceful
stigma upon their national character.

From the time when the Seven Towers thus became the prison of
ambassadors, they acquired an interest and celebrity which otherwise
they never could have attained. Mystery and romance took them under
their especial protection; and Eastern imaginations joined themselves to
those of the West, in inventing tales of horror, dark, deep, and
tragical, connected with the dungeons and caverns beneath these dreaded
walls. That gloomy aperture which yawns beneath your footsteps is called
the Well of Blood; even the Turkish guide acknowledges that it has often
overflowed with human gore! Within this low arched vault, from which the
cheerful sun is for ever excluded, the victim lay extended upon the
rack, until death itself became a welcome relief; and upon its walls
were arranged, in dreadful order, all the infernal instruments of
torture, by which the cruelty of man endeavoured to extort from the
wretched prisoners a confession of crimes, perhaps never committed, and
of conspiracies, existing only in the guilty imaginations of their
oppressors. A little court within the precincts of the building was
pointed out to me as having frequently contained a pyramid of human
heads, reaching so high, that, standing upon its summit, you might have
looked over the walls, and beheld the pure and peaceful Sea of Marmora.
The guide also made me remark a number of narrow passages, scarcely high
enough to admit a dog, through which it is reported that the miserable
captive was formerly compelled to crawl upon his belly, and then left to
perish from starvation, while he licked the dust in the extremity of his

Thanks, however, to civilisation, these horrors are now no longer
perpetrated; and, indeed, for the honour of human nature, one is
desirous of believing that the greater portion of them are mere fables,
invented by the guides, for the purpose of gratifying a morbid taste for
the horrible, and to enhance the interest of the place. A few old
soldiers are at present the only occupants of this redoubtable fortress,
which is rapidly falling to ruin, though a remnant of the jealousy of
former ages still requires a firman to be obtained, before you are
allowed to visit its once formidable interior.

[Sidenote: TOMB OF ALI PASHA.] Leaving the towers, and proceeding on
towards the village of Ejub, we came to the range of tombs, which formed
one of the principal objects of the day's excursion. It is situated near
the gate Selyori, through which passes the road leading in the direction
of Santo Stefano.

It is a low square piece of rough masonry, erected of oblong stones, in
the centre of a small verdant grove, and canopied by the luxuriant
foliage of a magnificent plane tree.

Intermingled with this mass of smiling verdure and blossom-loaded
boughs, appeared the dark funereal cypress, the emblem of death,
intruding itself in melancholy contrast with the smiling and cheerful
tints by which it is encircled.

The tombs consist of five tall sculptured stones, of unequal height,
surmounted by turbans, and inscribed with the following legend in
gilded characters, explanatory of the fate of the individuals whose
names it commemorates:--"Here is deposited the head of the once
celebrated Ali of Tepeleni, governor of the Sanjak of Janina, who for
upwards of fifty years aspired to independence in Albania. Also, the
heads of his three sons, Mouktar Pasha, Veli Pasha, Saelik Pasha; and
that of his grandson, Mehemet Pasha."

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN INSOLENCE.] Being unable to proceed farther along the
walls, we returned, through the city, to the Golden Horn, and arrived
rather late in Pera, where Hodgson and a friend of his from Beiroot,
were waiting dinner. The latter gentleman is the American Vice-consul in
Syria, and has visited Constantinople in the hope of recovering some
money to which he is entitled for the salvage of a valuable English
ship, lost on the coast near Beiroot. He amused us until a late hour
with many interesting descriptions of Beiroot, Lady Stanhope, and the
monks and cedars of Lebanon. Among other anecdotes, he related a curious
incident that happened to him yesterday. He accompanied a party of
Americans to Buyukdere, where they took a caique, and rowed alongside
the Russian flag-ship. The sentinel at the gangway immediately ordered
them to sheer off, and, on demanding the reason, they were told that
they must not attempt to approach without the admiral's permission.
Nothing daunted, they desired the man to ask the officer of the watch to
allow them to inspect the interior of the vessel; but he flatly refused,
because "they were Englishmen."

No sooner, however, was it explained that they were Americans, than they
were desired to wait, while the officer reported this communication to
his superior; the result of which was, that the admiral himself came on
deck and took them down to his cabin, where he treated them to a
luncheon of bread and cheese, fruit, and porter. When he had shown them
over the ship, he ordered his boat to be manned, and conducted them
himself to the head-quarters of the camp, sent an officer as their
guide, and patiently waited until they had fully gratified their
curiosity. But his attentions did not end there; for he took them on
board again, gave them another luncheon, and afterwards sent them ashore
at Buyukdere in his own boat.

My friend Marriot, who left us some time ago to visit Ibrahim at
Kutahieh, has returned with Mr. Costingen, who went to meet him at
Broussa, a charming city, surrounded by mulberry groves, situated at the
foot of Mount Olympus. It was the first residence of the Ottoman Emirs,
commencing with Orchan, whose mausoleum, strange to say, is a beautiful
octagonal church, belonging to a Greek monastery of that period. The
tombs of sultans, Ilderim, Bayazid, and of Amurath I., are also at

[Sidenote: IBRAHIM PASHA.] Marriot remained a day with Ibrahim, taking
the bath and dining with him. He is a fine fellow by his account; he
said he would have been in Stamboul, in spite of the Russians, if the
French and English had not interposed, and prevented him by their
threats; adding, that they would, ere long, back him, and wish they had
not interfered. If the allies would furnish him with 50,000 muskets, he
declared himself ready to begin the war again, with certain hopes of
success, provided they took no part in the contest; for he could raise
150,000 Syrians, besides the assistance of 45,000 Persians, who were
offered to him. He says, the day must arrive, when he shall be in
Stamboul, with the full approbation of both English and French, who will
find their truest policy is, to establish him on the throne of
Constantinople; and thus erect an effectual barrier against the
encroaching ambition of the Northern powers.

Marriot and his friend went up to Olympus, and remained encamped there
two days, for the purpose of bear-hunting; but meeting with no success,
they returned, and, taking boat, arrived at Constantinople by night.

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN INSOLENCE.] As they were quietly ascending the hill
towards Pera, the guard seized upon them, and, notwithstanding their
remonstrances, took them to the common prison, where they were thrust in
among a crowd of wretches who had been pining there for several days.
Indignant at this outrage, they sent a messenger for the consul, and for
Giuseppino, at break of day; and in the course of the morning, after a
tremendous row with the colonel of the guard-house, they were set at
liberty. The consul is exasperated, but they will get no redress, so
long as the present system of English diplomacy exists. Be it in Pera or
in Madrid, Petersburg or Naples, poor John Bull must always be kicked
and cuffed, ill used, and treated contrary to the law of the land in
which he happens to be sojourning. Is it to be supposed that any
minister would give himself the trouble to mix himself up in such
affairs? He might address a note to the authorities, when the facts
would in all probability be denied, or some paltry excuse made: the
minister declares himself satisfied, and the Perotes have the laugh
against us and our boasted powerful and energetic government. Now, had
it been a Frenchman, a Russian, or even a Prussian, who had been served
in this scandalous manner, how different would have been the result! The
colonel would have been dismissed, if not imprisoned; an apology from
the government, with the corporal punishment of the insolent soldiers,
and every satisfaction that could have washed away such foul treatment,
would have assuredly followed. For, though the law allows the arrest of
persons going through the streets at night without a light; yet, the
officer, seeing they were gentlemen, and just arrived by sea, had full
discretionary power to send them home with a guard; or, if it was
thought requisite to detain them, he had a good chamber in which they
might have been placed. But, insolent and obstinate, he turned a deaf
ear to every remonstrance, and ended by placing them in the same room
with filthy beggars and malefactors.

[Sidenote: ANECDOTE.] As an illustration of what has been just stated, I
will present the reader with a similar and somewhat more ludicrous
anecdote. A few weeks since, Costingen had gone on horseback to
Buyukdere, where, in passing the Sultan's kiosk at Dolma Batché, it is
always necessary to dismount. Woe betide the unlucky wight who, failing
to comply with this custom, happens to ride through the precincts of
the palace. Our Turk, however, forgot all this, and was instantly
arrested and insulted by the officer of the guard and the soldiers, who
dragged him into the guard-house, preparatory to his being sent off to
prison. Having discovered that he was mistaken for an Englishman, and
finding matters were assuming a rather serious aspect, he luckily
bethought of saying he was a Russian, "Rusky effendi ben! Rusky, Rusky!"
roared he. Consternation immediately spread itself over the sleepy
countenances of the Turks at this announcement. The captain, in the
utmost alarm, begged his pardon, and pipes, coffee, ices, &c. were
offered him by the soldiers, who declared themselves ready to fulfil his
slightest commands. The captain of the guard, as well as he could
explain himself, enquired why did he not say at once that he was a
Russian? "Mashallah! it was an unlucky mistake. Am I not blind, not to
see that you were no Englishman?" Further to propitiate the newly
created Muscovite colonel's wrath, a guard of five men, a guard of
honour,--hear it, ye Englishmen!--was sent to conduct him safe home, and
to protect him from further insult; and with this guard of honour,
Costingen the Turk actually marched through the streets of Pera, and
came to Tongo's house!

[Sidenote: GREEKS AND TURKS.] Such is the respect paid to the subjects
of an energetic government. Yet it must not be supposed that the Russian
finds any real sympathy in the breasts of the people: no! the Turks hate
them as they do Satan, and declare in private that they would "spit upon
their beards, and burn their fathers;" an oriental expression,
indicative of extreme hatred and contempt.

It was very late when I started from Tophana[13] to return to Terapia.
The evening was calm and beautiful, and as the caique glided slowly up
the stream, following all the sinuosities of the shore, the jasmine and
orange flower, and the sweet roses which are now blooming in myriads,
filled the air with their perfumed odours.

[Sidenote: TURKISH PUNCHINELLO.] As we passed the house of the Moslem,
all was gloomy silence; but on nearing a Greek village, the enlivening
sound of the song, the guitar, and followed by bursts of merriment,
broke upon the ear; and the frequent clapping of hands, and the strain
of the romaika, or the Italian waltz, which came floating over the
water, told of the merry joyous inmates, who are ever seen to prefer
the dance and song, to the pipe and coffee-cup; the twinkling feet, and
sparkling smile, to the grave nod and solemn demeanour of their former
tyrants. A little below Jené Keni, near one of the Turkish batteries,
the Turkish Punchinello was exhibiting his grotesque antics. It is long
since this merry devil has been allowed to stroll about, and amuse the
lower orders; but he does sometimes make his appearance. A transparent
skreen, illuminated from behind, concealed him from the spectators, so
that his shadow was the sole actor of all his tricks and adventures,
which appeared to resemble very closely those of his English and
Neapolitan namesake. His conversation must have been exceedingly
humorous, from the bursts of laughter which it extorted from the
soldiers and boatmen; for I lay to some time, in order to give them a
view of master Punch, who appeared to have his hands fully occupied with
the contests of his white and black slaves. On one occasion, his four
wives, jealous of his favourite black sultana, attacked him together;
but he eventually got the upper hand, by thrashing them all. Of course
he breaks the head of a pasha; sets the bowstring at defiance;
decapitates the eunuch sent to perform that merciful office on himself;
and at last provokes the attack of the Shaitanculy, or devil's
assistant. Just, however, as the prince of darkness had made his
appearance, an alarm was given, away scampered the crowd, out went the
lights, Punch disappeared, and before my men had the caique well on her
way again, all was quiet and solitary, as if nothing forbidden had been

[Sidenote: BEAUTIFUL NIGHT SCENE.] How lovely Terapia appears as I
approach it; not a breath of wind ruffles the surface of the water,
while the blaze of innumerable lights, which flash and glitter through
the leafy skreen of the casement-covered hill, reminds me of the fabled
splendours of Aladdin's cave. An almost perfect silence prevails,
interrupted only at intervals by the faint splash of some distant oar,
or the notes of thousands of nightingales, which swarm in every
rose-garden and orange grove, pouring forth "their amorous descant
through the livelong night."

The only persons I met, were the soldiers composing the Turkish guard,
which perambulates the streets every hour. Their leader carries a staff
armed with a large iron ferrule, which he strikes against the pavement,
to give notice that he is on duty.

[Sidenote: THE MUEZZIN.] _Friday, 7th._--This was the first morning that
I heard the Ezan, or cry of the muezzin from the minaret, calling the
faithful to prayer. I believe the invocation he makes, is something like
the following:--"Come to prayer; come to the temple of salvation. Great
God! there is no God but God.

  "La Allah ila Allah, Muhammed[14] Resoul Allah:"
   No God but God! Mahomet, prophet of God.

This exhortation is uttered in a loud and piercing tone of voice, which
steals through the calm morning, producing a powerful effect: it is like
the shrill call of a spirit to devotion, and has an unearthly sound.
Though the bell tolling to prayer, possesses over the soul a power whose
influence is very generally acknowledged, yet the awful voice of the
priest crying from the minaret is infinitely more solemn, and seems as
if it proceeded from the Divinity itself. There are few Mohammedans in
Terapia who obey the summons, except those in authority.

I walked out this afternoon with the ambassador, and took him to a
garden belonging to my landlord, an entrance into which I had
stipulated for on taking the house. It commands a view of Terapia and
the Bosphorus, and the prospect is so beautiful and picturesque, that it
has even been visited by the Sultan.

[Sidenote: MADAME MAUVROMATI.] On entering, we found Madame Mauvromati
and her pretty daughters sitting under the wide-spreading plane trees;
and they presented us with some delicious strawberries. Madame
Mauvromati is a very old woman, and has been a witness of most of the
atrocities inflicted on the Greeks during their recent struggles: she is
herself of Genoese parents, but was married to a Greek, who perished in
the great massacre. Of course she speaks Italian fluently; and her
children, like their mother, are well educated, as, in addition to their
native language, they understand Italian, French, and one of the sons,
English: I suspect also, that the dark-eyed beauty, who so modestly
proffered the strawberry basket, understood me better than she chose to
acknowledge. We sat listening to tales of the cruelties perpetrated on
the Greeks and Armenians; the exploits of the Sultan, and the
destruction of the janissaries; interspersed with various little
anecdotes of individuals well known in Stamboul, till it grew late, and,
in consequence, dinner was not served at the palace till much beyond
the usual hour. The French ambassador having sent word he should come
in at ten o'clock, our meal was despatched at double quick time. Admiral
Roussin was accompanied by two of his suite: politics, the most
interesting of topics at the present crisis, were not the order of the
evening; and, by one o'clock, I believe we were all glad to hear the
pipe to hammocks. I then strolled up to my lodgings, where, however, I
found that the piping had not reached.

[Sidenote: THE PLAGUE.] _Saturday, 8th._--A short time since, as two of
the midshipmen were strolling about the country, they discovered a
retired valley, and on proceeding towards the only dwelling in it, they
were suddenly stopped by a sentinel. On inquiry, they learned that it
contained part of a family resident in Terapia, three of whom had died
of the plague in April last. They are now shut up in this solitary
building, doing their eighty days penance or purification; and, of
course, no one is allowed to approach them. The guard places water,
bread, and, perhaps, some other coarse provisions in a certain spot, and
the half-starved wretches are allowed to remove it, some time after they
have seen their keepers retire.

[Sidenote: GREEK MASSACRE.] In the evening I visited my landlord's
garden, in the hope of meeting with Madame Mauvromati, and learning the
concluding portion of her history of the massacre of her countrymen,
and the destruction of the janissaries. The dark-eyed houri, with her
basket of strawberries, was there as usual; and the old lady led us to a
seat under the plane trees, commanding a view of Terapia and the
Sultan's kiosk.

"Observe," said she, "that range of dark houses which lines for some
distance the shore beneath us: they were once the happy homes of my
dearest friends and connexions. The evening which preceded the fatal day
to which you allude, had been passed in their society, and when I
quitted them, to return to my own residence, it was with feelings of
security as great as could be reasonably indulged in a city, where, at
that time, the life of a Greek was exposed to a thousand perils. Alas!
it was the last time I ever saw them alive. On the following morning,
when I looked from my window, I beheld the body of each of my friends
suspended from his own threshold, where they remained for the greater
part of the day. In vain we petitioned to have them delivered up, that
we might perform towards them the last sad duties of humanity. No! the
request was denied, and they were delivered to the Jews, who, with a
brutal feeling unequalled, except among the most ferocious savages,
mutilated and defiled the remains of these descendants of the Grecian
princes;--yesterday men of rank and fortune,--to-day treated as dogs,
and refused even Christian burial.

[Sidenote: ANECDOTE OF THE SULTAN.] "Though this occurrence took place
in 1822, ten years ago, yet the horrid spectacle is still as fresh in my
memory as if it had happened but yesterday. My husband, being a great
favourite with the Sultan, was allowed to purchase his life by the
sacrifice of nearly all he possessed; but he was long obliged to remain
in concealment. Those were, indeed, times of misery and distress: there
was not a single family belonging to my nation but had to deplore the
loss of some one of its members; and every Greek village presented a
scene of pillage and wanton massacre.

"But enough of this; let us now converse on more agreeable subjects. Two
years ago, our noble Sultan,--may his beard be white!--having heard of
the beauty of this garden, and the extensive prospects it commands, sent
a message to signify it was his pleasure to pay me a visit; and, a day
being appointed, he came with his sword-bearer, and two other officers
of the court. Let me first inform you, however, that some hours
previous, every dish and sweetmeat intended to be placed before his
Highness, was commanded to be sent over to the kiosk, in order that they
might be tasted before he partook of them, to prevent the possibility
of poison being administered through their means. After each dish had
undergone the necessary scrutiny, it was returned to me, enclosed in a
gauze net, carefully sealed by the proper officer.

"Well, the Sultan came, as I said before, and eat, drank, and was merry.
He is passionately fond of music, and the piano-forte was placed out
under the trees, where Anna and Zuleika sat singing and playing Greek
and Italian music to him, until he was quite enraptured.

"In the course of the evening, several of the young people of Terapia
were sent for by his Highness's special desire; and we waltzed, and
danced quadrilles, until long after the morn had shed its golden beams
on the smooth waters of the Bosphorus.

"Our sovereign remained during the whole time, so perfectly did he
relish and enter into the entertainments we had provided for him. Next
day, I received a magnificent present of flowers, sufficient to deck
some half dozen churches, and sweetmeats enough to last for a whole
year; accompanied by a message from the Sultan, expressive of the
pleasure he had experienced the evening before.

"But he could not be more delighted with my poor efforts to entertain
him, than I was by his affability, condescension, and engaging
demeanour. He promised to renew the visit; but, the aspect of public
affairs has ever since been too stormy and menacing, to allow the
anxious Mahmoud any opportunity of relaxation. Should days of peace
return, and the father of his people still remember his promise, he may
again delight us by his presence."

Whilst thus expatiating with an air of enthusiasm on the virtues of
Sultan Mahmoud, all the cruelty, indignity, and outrage committed on her
countrymen and relations, by his orders, seemed to vanish from the old
lady's recollection, as though she had tasted of the fabled Lethe.

Happy the tyrant, who, by a single act of condescension, can thus
obliterate the sanguinary records of his earlier days; and wash out the
remembrance of blood in libations to Bacchus, and draughts of the too
seductive and all-powerful Champagne!

[Sidenote: NEAPOLITAN STEAM-BOAT.] On returning to the house, I found an
express from Pera awaited me, announcing the arrival of the Neapolitan
steam-boat Francesco, with the Prince of Bavaria.

_Sunday, 9th._--I went down to Pera at an early hour this morning, and
found the Francesco Primo floating proudly in the centre of the Horn.
She was surrounded by hundreds of caiques, full of Turks and Greeks,
admiring this fine vessel, the largest steamer that had ever visited

At Tongo's, I roused up some of its passengers, whom I had expected, and
who were in our old quarters. They had been delighted with their trip,
but were highly dissatisfied with the treatment on board, where they had
to quarrel with bad provender, bad wine, and disobliging servants. In
the course of the voyage, they had visited Corfu, Napoli, Egina,
Corinth, Athens, and Smyrna. At the consul's I found Taylor, and near
the house, Lord Wiltshire, Ruddel, and Hatfield: every lodging-house,
every thing which went by the name of an albergo, was occupied; and such
an immigration of visitors with purses full of money, and pockets
crammed with note books, had probably never happened in Stamboul before.
The Prince of Bavaria and his suite occupied the Palace of Austria.

[Sidenote: JEWISH MUSICIAN.] After dinner, we sallied forth for the
Sweet Waters of Europe, where I believe the whole crew of the boat had
gathered together. The crowd of natives was also considerable to-day;
and I saw many very beautiful Greeks among them. We stopped to observe a
party of Turkish ladies, to whom a Jew was singing, and accompanying
himself on a guitar. After listening to various songs, they asked him
for a French or English ditty, as he professed to have visited all
countries; but he attempted to evade the request, afraid, no doubt, of
being detected by the Europeans standing round, for, probably, he had
never been five miles from Constantinople in his life. As the ladies
insisted, he at last commenced the following ditty;

  Alendo falendo
  Malendo Calendo
  Li fuli Culendo
  Buon Giornò.

which he repeated five or six times, much to the satisfaction of his
Turkish auditors, but more to our amusement, for most of us laughed
heartily, notwithstanding the sour looks of the old Turks, who, I
presume, were scandalized at seeing us expose ourselves in the presence
of the fair. The poor singer was heartily glad when we moved away, when
he, no doubt, treated his attentive listeners to another series of
English or Italian airs.

Boat loads of laughing, joyous Greeks now began to crowd the
landing-place; and every caique had either a guitar, flute, or violin
on board. After landing, the parties strolled about, while their
servants spread the carpets and viands upon the velvet turf. This done,
each jovial company squatted down on their cushions, and commenced
feasting and merry-making, which generally lasted until the night was
far advanced.

[Sidenote: BEAUTIFUL GREEK.] Many of the Greeks present were from the
Fanal, and three ladies from that quarter, who stepped out of the same
caique, attracted universal admiration wherever they moved; for, if not
princesses by birth, they were, at all events, entitled to claim that
distinction in the court of beauty; and the eldest was the most lovely
creature I ever beheld. She possessed one of those fine intellectual
faces, which, once seen, can never be obliterated from the gazer's
remembrance; and there was a languor and a softness in her countenance,
and in the expression of her large, dark, sleepy eyes, inexpressibly
fascinating, though more allied to Oriental than Grecian loveliness.
They were,

  "Black as death, their lashes the same hue,
   Of downcast length--in whose silk shadow lies
   Deepest attraction."

Her hair was of a deep glossy brown, nearly approaching to black, and
fell in luxuriant ringlets on a neck of ivory; while her tall,
commanding figure seemed to have been moulded by the Graces; and though
somewhat inclining to the _embonpoint_, she moved with an elegance and
dignity befitting Juno herself.

I have already observed, that the ankle of the true Grecian race is
remarkable for its exquisite symmetry; and hers was a model of
perfection, which plainly indicated her descent from a people, among
whom beauty is the most decided national characteristic. Her delicate
small foot was _chaussée'd_ in a very neat black shoe, with a stocking
of snowy whiteness: in a word, she seemed the personification of Dudú,

  "Somewhat large, languishing, and lazy,
   But of a beauty that would drive you crazy."

[Sidenote: ELEGANT COSTUME.] The ferridgè or cloak, worn by this "Queen
of the Sweet Waters," was thrown loosely on her shoulders, disclosing a
dress remarkable for its elegant simplicity. Her veil of white gauze,
worked at the ends with silk and gold, floated at random over her head
and shoulders; a rich shawl was bound round her waist, and served to
confine the tunic close to her bust: the remainder of her dress was of
muslin, plain, neat, and of the purest white. She appeared perfectly
unconscious of her superior beauty, and though this costume was
calculated to display her attractions to the greatest advantage, her
whole demeanour was characterised by the most perfect modesty.

The other ladies, if seen elsewhere, might have been considered
handsome; but on this occasion their charms were completely eclipsed. In
attempting to describe the person of so singular and lovely a female, I
feel conscious how inadequate my language has been to convey any idea of
the reality; which, like a Peri descended from the celestial paradise,
flits before my eyes, "rich in all woman's loveliness."

  "Who hath not proved how feebly words essay
   To fix one spark of Beauty's heavenly ray?
   Who doth not feel, until his failing sight
   Faints into dimness with its own delight--
   His changing cheek--his sinking heart confess
   The might--the majesty of loveliness?"

I could not discover who the enchantress was, further than that her
party came from the Fanal. After remaining but a very short time, they
reentered their light bark, and sped swiftly down the stream.

[Sidenote: TURKISH LADIES.] Some Turkish ladies present were exceedingly
affable, lowering their gashmaks, and conversing for some time with us,
through Tongo's brother, who performed the office of interpreter. They
made various inquiries respecting our nation--why we had come to
Stamboul?--how long we intended to remain? And then came that question,
at once so natural and delightful to a pretty woman, "Did we think them
handsome?" To this home-thrust at our gallantry, we of course made a
suitable reply; which, unlike such answers in general, was strictly
consistent with truth, for they were really beautiful, though the
artificial junction of their painted eyebrows, and their stained nails,
by no means heightened the effects of their natural charms. Our
compliments appeared to amuse them exceedingly, for they laughed and
chattered to each other with a vivacity not surpassed by the most
accomplished gossips of any country, and which formed a perfect contrast
to their affected sober demeanour. Just as they were beginning to be
delightfully familiar, and had presented us with some delicious ices,
two or three old Turks hove in sight. In an instant, every dimpling
smile vanished; their countenances were again enshrouded in the odious
linen masks; their ample veils dropt around them, and making a hasty
sign for us to depart, our talkative and merry friends were again as
demure and discreet, as any "magnificent three-tailed bashaw" in the
empire could possibly have desired.

This was my farewell excursion to the Keathane, for I had no
opportunity of visiting it afterwards; but the happy moments I passed
there, will ever be among the most delightful recollections of my visit
to the East.

[Sidenote: THE SERASKIER.] _Monday, 10th._--To day I took upon myself
the duties of a cicerone, and volunteered to pioneer the uninitiated,
and show them the wonders of Stamboul. The first place we visited was
the arm bazaar, with the others in succession; and when they closed, we
went to the Seraskier's tower. As we were coming away, the pilot of the
Actæon joined us, and we climbed up the circular stair a second time. In
descending, the cavash who had conducted us, observed, that he thought
he had hit upon the means of getting admitted into St. Sophia. As he
addressed himself to me, I promised to give him 100 piastres if I could
accomplish it; and after consulting his brother cavashes, he returned,
saying, it would only be necessary to ask permission of the Seraskier.
Ask the Seraskier! beard the lion in his den! Who would undertake to
present himself before him on such an errand? George, however, the
fearless pilot of the Actæon, would have belled the Sultan himself in
his divan; so he was unanimously chosen to represent the company of
English nobles, and pushed into the presence forthwith.

He found the Seraskier seated smoking upon his divan, and he politely
inquired the purport of his visit. George, who was in his plain sailor's
clothes, addressed his Excellency by all his titles, and replied, that
he was a British officer, one of several others, who were waiting
outside, because they felt unwilling to intrude on his Seraskiership;
that the party could remain in Stamboul but a few days, and having heard
much talk of the magnificent mosque of St. Sophia, they were most
anxious to be admitted within its sacred precincts; for which favour
they should be ever grateful, and devoutly pray, &c.

To this the Seraskier replied, that he highly applauded the laudable
curiosity of the spokesmen and his friends: that truly, the mosque was
an object worthy of their inspection, and did the order for admission
depend on him, he would grant it _instanter_. It was, however,
entirely foreign to his department, and he could only refer them to
the Scheik Islam, or to the Reis Effendi, either of whom, on his
recommendation,--and he desired George to convey to them his humble
respects,--would grant the object of their petition. He prayed to God
they might succeed, for God was great.

So saying, he bowed George out of the audience chamber into the court,
where we stood, bursting with laughter at the ridiculousness of the
scene, and well aware, that the permission was never granted, except as
an especial favour, and always by a firman regularly signed and sealed
by the Sultan, and delivered through the various officers about the
court, on the payment of heavy fees.

[Sidenote: FOREIGN VISITORS.] To console ourselves for this
disappointment we bowled away to a cabob shop, and having made a good
luncheon, repaired to Mustapha's, to assist our digestion with a pipe,
and make ready for the consul's dinner, to which we were invited. The
shop was full of English, French, Germans, and Russians, all passengers
in the Francesco; indeed, there was hardly a bazaar where some one of
them was not to be found. The Jew interpreters were making a rare
harvest, and the price of every article had nearly been doubled.
Mustapha pawned off Attar Gul, as well as every other scent,
manufactured for the occasion: having promised, if I would not peach, he
would serve my friends honestly, he probably did so; but I am certain he
made a good thing of the contraband.

[Sidenote: ORIENTAL BEAUTY.] _Tuesday, 11th._--I enjoyed the pleasure,
this morning, of being introduced to a very handsome Turkish lady, whom
Madame Giuseppino purposely invited to her house, in order to give me
an opportunity of witnessing a perfect specimen of Oriental beauty.
After a good deal of persuasion, she allowed me to copy her profile.

Her eyes and eyelashes were intensely black; though I suspect the latter
were stained of a dye deeper than the natural one. Her complexion was
beautifully fair, with the slightest tint of carnation suffused over the
cheek. Her lips! sweet lips! "that make us sigh even to have seen such."
Her glossy hair, which was bound with a kalemkeir or painted
handkerchief, representing a whole parterre of flowers, fell in loose
curls upon her shoulders, and down her back: she wore a short black
velvet jacket, embroidered with gold lace; trowsers of sky blue silk; an
under-jacket of pink crape, and one of those beautiful transparent
shirts which ravish the beholder, and "half reveal the charms they fain
would hide." A magnificent Persian shawl encircled her waist, which had
nature's own form, never having been compressed by the cruel bondage of

Her feet were in slippers, and two or three ugly rings deformed her
white and slender fingers, the nails of which were dyed with henna.
Around her neck she wore a double row of pearls, from which hung an
amulet. Her skin was very white and beautiful; the constant use of the
dry vapour bath having reduced it to a fineness, which I can only
compare to highly polished marble; and it looked as glossy and as cold.
She was well pleased with the drawing I made of her; and, on rising to
go away, she put on her yellow boots over the beautiful white foot and
ankle, which it was a sin to conceal: then donning her gashmak and
cloak, she bade us adieu, with a grace and elegance which few English
ladies could equal.

No wonder the Turks sigh for paradise, when they believe heaven to be
peopled with houris such as these! Egad! it requires the exertion of all
one's philosophy and self-denial to resist the temptation of turning
Turk too.

It was really delightful to watch the elegant manner in which this young
and lovely creature moved, and with how graceful, yet unstudied attitude
she accepted the sweetmeats I presented to her. Who would wish for
spoons, forks, or knives, when such fair hands are plunged with yours
into the dish, and draw forth the contents with an air that fills one
with admiration? So soft, so gentle is the touch with which every thing
is handled,--the contact being effected with the extreme tip of the
finger alone,--that it reminds you of the half hesitating, half
fearful, yet graceful, motion with which a well-bred cat dips her paw
into water.

I repeatedly thanked our hostess for the pleasure she had afforded me,
by an introduction to this very beautiful representative of the much
talked-of, and far-famed, Turkish ladies.

Considering the rigid seclusion of eastern women at home, and the
ingenuity with which their apparel is contrived for concealing their
persons when abroad, I have reason to congratulate myself on my good
fortune in having seen so many.

[Sidenote: OTTOMAN EMPIRE.] _Wednesday, 12th._--I took a long ramble
to-day over hill and valley with Lord Ponsonby; during which we had a
very interesting conversation on the present position of this country.
The Sultan's future prospects were canvassed; but the opinions being
confidential, I cannot report them here. Thus far, however, I am at
liberty to observe, that to me they appeared sound, judicious, and
suited to the exigency. His plan for the maintenance of the Turkish
empire may not suit Lord Grey's views; but it is the best, and must
inevitably be adopted, now, or at some future period. I, however,
believe, that, when it comes to the "_ultima ratio regum_" with Russia,
which will be sooner or later, Austria will forsake her quondam ally;
that is, if France and England go hand in hand: Persia will rise in
arms; her southern provinces will probably rebel; Poland will again
revive; and the great empire fall to pieces. But I will say no more; for
my own ideas appear so identified with those confided to me, that, in
giving them utterance, I might unconsciously betray a trust, and make
known that which, for the present, ought to be a secret.

_Thursday, 13th._--To-day the Sultan crossed in the state caique to his
new palace near Beglerbeg. The frigates, &c. manned yards, were dressed
in all their colours, and fired a royal salute. Unfortunately, this
transferring of his sacred person from Europe to Asia was not previously
made known, so that I did not witness the procession; but the thundering
of the cannon announced that some great event was going forward.

[Sidenote: MORNING PRAYER.] _Friday, 14th._--The sound of the muezzin,
calling the faithful to prayer, again arrested my attention this
morning. Though it was late ere I got to my couch, I could not resist
the pure and freshening air, which entered my chamber to summon me
forth, and I reached the garden ere the sun rose upon Terapia. Just
then, a loud voice came borne on the wings of the breeze, breaking the
stillness which reigned below and around me. The village was yet in
repose; Philomel had ceased her song, and the other choristers of the
grove were silently awaiting the coming of the god of day. The night
breeze, in dying away, had left the trees calm and motionless; and it
was in that moment of breathless nature, that the usual solemn
invocation to prayer spread itself in sonorous undulations through the
silent valley, chanted forth in clear distinct tones from the tapering
minaret of the little mosque on the opposite side of the bay.

In such a scene as this, it sounded like the voice of the Divinity
calling on every frail mortal to confess and own the power of the
omnipresent Being, the Great Spirit who made the temple of the universe
for his worship. The humbled sinner acknowledges the awful summons, and
offers the outpourings of a heart full of gratitude to the Eternal, who
made him, and this beautiful world for his enjoyment; and responds to
the voice of God, speaking through nature, with an intensity of feeling
which is the sure pledge of its sincerity.

[Sidenote: SUNRISE.] As these sounds died away upon the breeze, the sun
arose; the morning gun of the camp responded to the echoes of that from
the fleet; the rattling of the marine sentries' muskets, discharged
immediately after; the roll of drums, and the blast of trumpets,
proclaimed that man had started from his couch, to toil or idle through
another day. The smoke soon curled in thin white masses from the cottage
chimneys of the numerous villages around, and the complicated machinery
of life's business was set in motion by the Great Engineer in full-orbed
majesty arrayed.

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN CAMP.] I have already mentioned the slight offered to
the captain of the Actæon, when he went to visit the Russian camp; and
that the commander-in-chief had gone on board to make an apology, and
had sent tickets for the officers to enable them to enter without future
difficulty and trouble. To-day we espied the ambassador's boat coming
over, and, on nearing the head-quarters, it deposited Lady Ponsonby and
a party, who also went and made an inspection of this formidable army.
On going to the palace to dinner, I learnt that they had been much
gratified: the officers were attentive; the tents comparatively clean,
much cleaner and more comfortable than they expected to have found them;
but the men were rather badly clothed, and looked shabby.

[Sidenote: RUSSIAN INSOLENCE.] The ambassador informed me that, in order
to ascertain whether the American consul of Beiroot, had not made some
unintentional mistake in his story respecting the contemptuous treatment
offered by the Russians to a party whom they supposed to be English, he
had recently sent the pilot of the Actæon, in plain clothes, on board
the admiral's ship. The experiment, however, only served to elicit a
still more flagrant and unequivocal manifestation of their rancorous
insolence; for when George approached within hail, he received orders to
"sheer off instantly, as he was very well known." He replied that he was
not an Englishman; but that availed nothing: "Be off!" was the order of
the day. I need not add, that Lord Ponsonby was now quite satisfied of
the truth of the story; yet, though he felt highly indignant, and has
manifested on all occasions the most earnest desire to shield us from
the injurious treatment experienced from these northern barbarians, what
could he do? The Russians would, of course, disclaim any intentional
insult; say it was all a mistake, and then repeat the outrage.

[Sidenote: NAMIK PASHA--TAHIR PASHA.] Namik Pasha[15] was at the palace
to-day; he professes to be highly gratified with his reception in
England, and is quite enthusiastic in his encomiums on Lord Grey, the
English ministry, and the ladies. He appears to be a clever, sensible
man; and much benefit must arise to this country, from the enlarged
views he has no doubt acquired during his sojourn among the more
civilised nations of Europe; especially as he is known to have
considerable influence with the Sultan. I do not mean politically, for
every one here believes he is bribed by Russia; but he will take an
active part in improving the manners, customs, and feelings, and in
bettering the condition, of his countrymen. Tahir Pasha divides the
friendship of the Sultan with him, and will much assist any plans for
the amelioration of the country. He commanded the Turkish fleet at
Navarino, and is the best instructed and most intelligent man in the
Sultan's service. He converses fluently in several of the European and
Oriental languages; and, as I am informed, understands those of
antiquity. The Sultan has appointed him general of cannoneers, and
governor of Galata and Pera; while Namik holds the important post of
commander of all the fortresses and batteries on the Bosphorus, on which
he sails to and fro in a very beautiful caique, manned by three rowers,
who pull up and down the current at an astonishing rate. His boat, and
that of Dr.---- (I forget his name), are the most elegant on this

[Sidenote: EXCURSION TO THE BLACK SEA.] _Saturday, 15th._--It being
arranged that the steam-boat should make an excursion into the Black
Sea, some of the officers and myself went down to Stamboul this morning,
with the intention of joining the party; and we expected that a great
many Perotes would have accompanied us; but not above six were on board:
as it was, the deck proved to be sufficiently crowded. The boat was
detained one hour after all the passengers had arrived, in waiting for
his Highness the Prince; who being at length on board, off we started.
As her paddles revolved, the caiques of the Turks began to dance on the
waves, much to the terror of their owners. On approaching the new kiosk,
the Francesco stopped to salute the Sultan, who was sitting in one of
the bow-windows with several of his suite about him, watching us through
an English spy-glass; and we could discern that the apartment was fitted
up in the Parisian style. A battery near the palace answered our salute;
and the Sultan having retired, we started again. In that portion of the
building appropriated to the harem, some females were observed peeping
at us through the blinds; but none of the lineaments, not even the eyes,
could be distinguished, the mere contour of the figure being all that
was discernible; so those who were prepared to boast of having
exchanged glances with the Sultan's dark-eyed beauties, were entirely

On nearing the Actæon, the Captain came on board, and we lay to for some
time, while a boat was despatched to that vessel for a Russian flag, and
when it arrived we steamed on again. Another salute was fired as we
passed the Russian admiral, which he was so long in returning, that it
was supposed they did not think our boat worth replying to. However, it
came at last, with a bad grace, though better late than never.

[Sidenote: THE SYMPLEGADES.] After sailing past the old ruined Genoese
castles, which have been restored by some French engineer, we entered
the Sea of Storms. Near the coast, which is low and sandy, in the
direction of Rivaz, arise the "blue Symplegades," those fatal rocks,
about which so many fables had been narrated by the ancient poets; and I
expected to behold vast masses of rugged cliffs: but certainly these
_geese_ have been magnified into _swans_; for there was nothing to
inspire terror on the present occasion, though it is possible the waves
may break violently on them during a storm, and perhaps a Turkish vessel
might be reminded of _Davy Jones_. [Sidenote: COLOUR OF THE BLACK SEA.]
We returned after having gone about three miles out, and satisfied some
of our _learned_ associates that, although the element on which we were
sailing was called the _Black_ Sea, the water was not in reality of
that colour: some of the more hardened unbelievers, however, aware that
experiment is the test of truth, actually insisted on having a bucket of
it hauled up, and examined in a tumbler, before they would renounce
their preconceived opinions.

A long discussion now arose, whether the boat should remain until the
next evening at Buyukdere, or proceed onwards to Galata, after landing
those who wished to disembark at the former place. After a stormy
debate, the first-named proposition was carried by a large majority, a
majority decided by the democratic principle of vote by ballot.
Notwithstanding this apparent settlement of the question, the captain
changed his mind, and, landing those who were Buyukderotes, he left them
to find their way to Stamboul, and obtain lodgings for themselves as
they could: rather a difficult thing, by the by; for to-morrow evening
the Austrian ambassador gives a grand fête, dinner, ball, and supper to
the Prince of Bavaria, who is to review the Russian troops in the
morning, and leave Stamboul on Monday. All attempts have failed to
procure him an audience of the Sultan, who will not receive him,
because, he says, naturally enough, "What has he to do with me, or I
with him? He is brother of the King of Greece: granted: but why come to
intrude himself here? I will not see him; it can do no good." These were
the Sultan's words, in answer to the application.

[Sidenote: CHARACTER OF THE RUSSIANS.] Having landed at Buyukdere, with
many of the _Inglesi_, we went to the hotel, a clean, comfortable
well-fitted house, with a good cook and good wines. It was very
laughable to hear the landlord execrating the Russians. "They never,"
said he, "spend a penny; stingy close fellows, who would eat a tallow
candle down to the very end, and leave not a drop for the waiter!" He
wished to God they were at the bottom of the Black Sea, with the English
fleet anchored above them. "Then," said he, "we should see the porter
corks fly, the tables swim with grog, cigar boxes burst their cedar
sides, the cook roast all day, and I be happy in the general scramble:
but, alas! there's no such luck nowadays."

After partaking of a few bottles of London porter, we embarked in my
caique which had been waiting for me, and away we rowed to Terapia. We
dined at the palace, and went to bed early, to be up betimes, and over
the water, in order to accompany the Prince at the review. By the by,
the splendid lobsters we had for supper must not be forgotten. I never
saw such immense shell-fish; any one of them would have satisfied the
cravings of an alderman.

[Sidenote: GRAND REVIEW.] _Sunday, 16th._--Our party arrived in time to
see the Prince received by a guard of honour. Count Orloff, the general,
and a staff of officers, were present, superbly dressed in Polish,
Russian, and Turkish uniforms. The guard consisted of one man in full
dress, from each regiment, and a brass trumpet band; and, from what I
afterwards observed, it was very evident that the uniform worn on this
occasion by each soldier was the only one of the kind belonging to his
respective regiment. After inspecting this body, the Prince got on
horseback, and we also found horses provided for us all and many to
spare, though most of us preferred going on foot.

We first visited the Turkish camp, and then proceeded to that of the
Cossacks. A guard of the latter, wild fierce-looking marauders, led the
way; then followed the Prince and his staff; and the procession was
closed by a troop of Turkish lancers, very odd-looking soldiers, and our
party of pedestrians, who managed, by making short cuts, to get before
the main body of reviewers. The tents were all whitened, and put in the
best possible order for the occasion; and it must be allowed they looked
very pretty and comfortable, being surrounded by tall green branches,
which were stuck into the ground; so that, in walking between them, we
seemed to be moving through a grove of shady trees. Each regiment was
drawn out, with its arms piled, and the soldiers were dressed in grey
_great-coats_, though it was the hottest day I ever remember to have
experienced during my stay at Constantinople.

As the royal cortège passed along the line, the soldiers doffed their
caps, and when it arrived at the centre of each regiment, the fugle-man
gave a signal, and they raised a loud shout, followed by a short
expressive ejaculation, in their native language, which means, "God save
the Emperor!" But the most striking and novel portion of the whole was,
when the regiments, after being reviewed, successively poured forth one
of those beautiful solemn chants, which I heard once before, from the
quarter-deck of the Actæon. [Sidenote: GIANT'S MOUNTAIN] In the present
instance, the whole army did not commence singing together, but each
regiment caught up the strain as the preceding one dropped it, so that
the music lasted for a considerable period; and never did the elaborate
productions of the most celebrated composers, sound to me half so
beautiful as these sacred simple melodies, when chanted by a thousand
united voices, and spreading heavenly music over the whole mountain. I
shall not readily forget the effect produced on my feelings by this
harmonious "concord of sweet sounds;" and at that moment how highly
poetical did the rich descriptive imagery of Shakspeare appear, where he
makes one of his characters exclaim:--

  "That strain again;--it had a dying fall:
   O, it came o'er my ear like the sweet south,
   That breathes upon a bank of violets,
   Stealing, and giving odour!"

After following the Prince to the top of the Giant's Mountain, we
allowed him to descend without our train, and remained to enjoy the wide
extended prospect.

Behind the mosque situated on this eminence, is an oblong narrow garden,
full of rose trees and jasmine, which vulgar tradition points out as the
grave of the giant who gives name to the mountain, and who figures in
the Pagan annals as a hero of extraordinary size and valour. Among the
Christians, he is said to have been a vast and ferocious giant; while
the Mussulmans will have him to be a holy dervish. In each tradition he
was a monster, that sat on the top of the mountain, and dangled his feet
in the waters of Buyukdere to cool himself. According to the poets,
every one who passed the Bosphorus was compelled to engage him in
single combat, until he fell, at last, by the hand of Pollux. The
Christian version of the story, that describes him as the stirrer up of
whirlpools, and the devourer of the sailors who attempted to pass the
channel without paying tribute, is equally wild and fabulous. The
Mussulman account, which makes him a dervish that lived to a vast age,
and whose favour it was the object of every one of the Faithful to gain,
is the least improbable of the whole.

[Sidenote: DISTANT PROSPECT.] Near the mosque stands a pretty little
kiosk, belonging to the Sultan, shaded by some amazingly fine plane
trees. Constantinople is not seen from this spot, but the view extends
along the whole channel, and the isles in the Sea of Marmora are just
visible; while beyond them, towering into the skies, and of the most
dazzling whiteness, appears Mount Olympus, the habitation of the gods.
The prospect on the European side is tame and unpicturesque, consisting
almost entirely of a succession of flat uncultivated downs, with nothing
to break the dull monotony of the scene, except here and there, where
the tall slender minaret of a mosque, or a single tree, rises against
the horizon, and resembles the mast of some solitary vessel ploughing
its course through the boundless waste of waters.

We descended by a different route, through part of the ground marked
out for a new camp, the necessity for which it is difficult to
comprehend, unless more troops are expected. We got into the Sultan's
Valley, and lounged under the trees till dinner-time, when we passed
over to Terapia.

[Sidenote: GRAND FÊTE.] Most of the Turkish ministers were present at
the grand fête and dinner given by the Austrian embassy, at which the
Seraskier got "plenissimus Bacchi," and, I believe, proved rather
uproarious; at least he became terribly amorous, and attentive to the
ladies. Had he been able, and dared, he would have waltzed and danced
with them all. I did not go, for a good reason,--I was not asked. One
had, after all, the satisfaction of the "fox and the grapes." It was a
poor affair! There could, in reality, be no great pleasure in seeing an
assembly of old grey-bearded Turks getting drunk on porter and
Champagne, and making fools of themselves, however much gratification it
might afford the sapient heir to the throne of Bavaria, and his
attendant crowd of Germans and Neapolitans.

[Sidenote: THE PRINCE AND THE SULTAN.] _Monday, 17th._--This morning the
Russians began to embark their tumbrils and heavy baggage, so that they
seem to be absolutely going in earnest. I went down to Pera to learn the
result of the negotiations for delaying the steam-boat, and found most
of the passengers in a state of fury. Some among them had resigned their
passage, and resolved to travel home by land; others were storming,
because it was now proposed to put off the boat's starting till
Saturday, Prince Butera having been offered an audience on Friday. It
seems that when the Sultan refused the Austrian application, Orloff went
and COMMANDED him to receive his Royal Highness, "UNDER PAIN OF
RUSSIAS, THE EMPEROR OF THE East!" And how did Mahmoud act? Why, he
consented; ay, consented, not only to receive with open arms this man,
who is the brother of a king set over a portion of his empire, which has
been wrested by force and treachery from his sublime grasp, and once the
brightest jewel of his diadem, but also to present him with a snuff-box
set in diamonds, with his own portrait on the lid! This is the first
instance in which the great imperial monkey has made use of the sublime
cat's paw!

[Sidenote: PRINCE BUTERA.] Though the delay in the starting of the boat
was openly resisted by all the English, as well as by the supercargoes,
the Prince's governors continued running from one passenger to the
other, canvassing for votes. The almost universal reply to this
unreasonable application was, "that it appeared extraordinary a prince
royal, who, together with his suite, had treated the passengers during
the whole voyage with supercilious contempt, and thwarted them whenever
they wished the slightest change in the route, should now condescend to
solicit those same individuals to delay the boat a week, and
inconvenience themselves, to further an object in which the Prince alone
was at all interested."

The conduct of the royal party, on the very morning when this selfish
request was made, was not at all calculated to remove the prejudices to
which their previous behaviour had given rise. The Prince had obtained a
firman to see the mosques, which would have admitted four hundred as
readily as four; yet he had not the good feeling or politeness to
announce to any single passenger that he was going to visit these
exclusive curiosities, but went with his suite and his particular
friends alone; and though he had appointed a certain hour for assembling
before St. Sophia, he actually went thither an hour earlier, so that
those who intended to spunge upon the royal firman came too late, and
were disappointed. [Sidenote: PREPARATIONS TO DEPART.] After such
treatment, could they assent to postpone the departure of the boat for a
single day? Though I am proud to say none of my countrymen gave in, yet
the Neapolitans, Germans, and Spaniards, and one or two Frenchmen on
board, uniting with the Prince's friends and suite, obtained a majority
for the measure. As we dined at the palace, I determined to sound Lord
Ponsonby, in the evening, as to the probability of the Actæon's
departure; for hitherto he had repeatedly told me it would take place in
a few days, or, at the latest, by the end of the month. This state of
uncertainty was very unpleasant; for I was prevented from leaving
Terapia on any excursion, even for two or three days; because it was
possible she might sail any day at six hours' notice. Now, as it seemed
very probable that the steam-boat would remain in the harbour till the
end of the week, I might arrange to go in her, especially as my friend
and fellow-lodger Barrow was very anxious to be off, and a house divided
cannot go on smoothly. By taking a passage in the Francesco, I should
also have an opportunity of visiting Smyrna and most of the Greek
islands. Unfortunately, however, the French ambassador and several of
his legation came in, and sat until a late hour; so the opportunity did
not occur. In fact, the reply of Captain Grey, in answer to an
observation made by the commander of the French frigate, in the course
of the evening, sufficiently explained that his departure was
altogether uncertain.

_Tuesday, 18th._--I was informed to-day, by Hodgson, that on Thursday,
the American chargé d'affaires intends visiting the mosques, having
received a firman for that purpose; and he very kindly invited me to go,
observing, at the same time, that if my two friends chose to be at the
gate of the seraglio, opposite St. Sophia, at a certain hour, they might
enter in the train.

[Sidenote: ROYAL COUNTRY SEAT.] On returning to Terapia, I joined a
party who were going to see the Sultan's palace on the lower side of the
bay. It is a very comfortable pleasant country seat, without containing
any furniture of a costly description; the usual display of Oriental
taste and magnificence being lavished on the baths, which are situated
at a short distance from the main building, in a delightfully secluded
spot; and are as splendid and luxurious as art can render them. The
little valley in which the kiosk stands has been entirely enclosed by
stone walls, in order to form gardens and pleasure-grounds; and it is
possible to ride for five or six hours through the broad and stately
alleys cut through the groves and shrubberies of this lovely domain,
without passing twice over the same route. [Sidenote: RAPACITY OF THE
SULTAN.] This truly royal dwelling once belonged to an imân, whom the
Sultan thought proper to bowstring[16], and forfeit his lands. Of the
precise nature of his crime I am ignorant; but in a country like Turkey,
where the caprice of the Sultan is the law, a very slight pretext is
sufficient to ensure the destruction of such as have excited his
rapacity by an imprudent display of wealth, or his jealousy by attempts
to acquire popularity: in the present case, it was probably the great
beauty of this estate that caused its owner's destruction. However this
be, I certainly envied his sublime highness the possession of so
charming a retreat: it is a place to live and die in; and I felt a
momentary desire to pass the remainder of my existence within its
ever-blooming orange, rose, and jasmine bowers. I believe it might
belong to the British government for a trifle, having been offered by
the Sultan to Mr. Stratford Canning, who refused it, from very
honourable motives, as he considered it possible he might be suspected
of pressing the government to purchase it, with a view to his own
private enjoyment.

The Sultan is now not sorry we declined his offer, for he spends a great
portion of his leisure in this, the most pleasant, romantic, and
delightful of all his summer residences. We left it highly gratified,
after partaking of some delicious strawberries, cherries, and melons,
which the gardeners brought us from the hot-houses.

[Sidenote: DEPARTURE OF THE ACTÆON.] After dining at the palace, I found
an opportunity of mentioning to his Lordship that I was invited to
return home in the Actæon, she being supposed to be on the point of
sailing; but, if this was uncertain, I should endeavour to find another
mode of conveyance. Lord Ponsonby, thus appealed to, acknowledged that
there was no chance of the ship sailing till her time was up, for he had
written to the admiral of the station, and the government at home, to
have the Actæon fixed at Terapia, at his disposal. As he did not know
what might happen between him and the Russians, he thought it right to
have a frigate to go away in, if necessary; and he preferred that vessel
for the purpose, as he felt a strong personal friendship and regard
towards both captain and officers. This communication, which was highly
complimentary to my friends, as well as particularly satisfactory to
myself, decided me at once, and, on returning home, I announced to my
gay warm-hearted companions on board the Actæon that the painful moment
of separation was at hand. The blow was not unexpected, yet some of us
would rather it had been deferred. The next morning I started for Pera,
and bargained with the directors of the steam-boat for my own and my
friend's passage to Malta.

[Sidenote: VISIT TO THE MOSQUES.] _Thursday, 20th._--This being the day
fixed for the American chargé d'affaires' visit to the mosques, at nine
o'clock our party sallied forth, and, on arriving opposite the Seraglio
Gate, we bought slippers, took our pipes, and squatted in the shade,
under the wide-spreading roof of the beautiful fountain in the centre of
the square.

St. Sophia was built by Justinian on the ruins of a church of the same
name, already twice destroyed; and part of the dome was a third time
overthrown by an earthquake. Splendid and various were the treasures it
once contained; but these have been long since removed by the
desecration and sacrilege of the Latin and the Moslem; and nothing of
that description is now left to astonish the pilgrim of either creed,
who approaches this sacred temple. Justinian gloried that he had erected
a place of worship which far surpassed the work of Solomon; and on
dedicating it the second time, after the restoration of the dome, he was
nearly maddened by joy. What would have been his feelings, could he have
foreseen the day when the conquering Latin should defile its altar, and
the infidel Turk convert it into a temple for the worshippers of his
prophet, after being consecrated to the pure religion of Christianity
for a period of nine hundred years! St. Sophia is thus equally an object
of veneration to the Christian and the Musulman.

On the arrival of our American friends, we mustered in a large party
before the bronze gates of the church, where we were all for a few
moments busily engaged in taking off our boots and putting on the
slippers we had purchased. This done, we proceeded into the interior of
the edifice, with which I confess myself greatly disappointed; as the
_tout ensemble_ displays no magnificence, and the impressions on the
gazer's mind, partake of none of that involuntary admiration and
religious awe, which the sight of an old English cathedral, or the
splendid churches of Italy, never fails to produce. One of its greatest
defects arises from want of loftiness in the dome, the diameter of which
is one hundred and fifteen, while its height does not exceed twenty
feet. There is an immense number of columns, the spoils of various
heathen temples. Of these, eight, of porphyry, are from that dedicated
to the Sun by the Emperor Aurelian; and the same number, of green
marble, verd antique, or _serpentine_, from the temple of Ephesus. Very
little of the ancient mosaic now remains, as the devotees, both Turk and
Christian, have for ages been in the habit of pillaging it, to make
ornaments, beads, and talismans; so that the work of destruction is
nearly complete, and a manufacture of these relics, which are composed
of gilded glass, will soon be required. I bought a whole handful for a
few paras; and having seen them dug out of their cement by the mufti who
sold them, I can vouch for their being genuine.

We now ascended into the upper and lower galleries; in the former of
which the Greek women performed their devotions, and the men in the
latter. Two doors, one on either side of the passage in which we now
were, opened into a third gallery, where I was told stood the "gates of
heaven and hell." They are of marble, but the origin of this
superstition I could not learn. The floor of the mosque was covered with
beautiful carpets, and the ornaments resembled those I saw in that of
Soliman the Magnificent, which is considered a much finer building. St.
Sophia is also surpassed in beauty by the mosque of Sultan Mehemet,
which may be considered as the St. Peter's of the East. The next in size
and grandeur are those of Achmet and Osman; but as these buildings very
much resemble each other, both in external and internal form and
decorations, to see one is quite sufficient: "ab uno disce omnes." A
greater or less number of elegant, tall, slender minarets or towers, are
attached to each mosque in proportion to its size. They are dazzlingly
white, like the edifices to which they belong, and are surmounted by
golden crescents that flash and sparkle in the brilliant sunbeams of
this sultry clime; and, as the number of public religious foundations is
immense, independently of thousands of private mosques; the united
splendour of so many glittering objects, added to the beauty of the deep
blue cloudless sky, contribute to render the view of Constantinople,
from a distance, one of the most singular and attractive prospects on
the earth.

On quitting St. Sophia, we proceeded to the mosque of the Sultan Achmet,
situated in the Atmeidan[17]; but I did not observe any thing
particularly worthy of notice, except the court, which is very beautiful
and shaded by fine trees. The Osmalie, or "light of Osman," is built of
pure white marble; and may be pronounced to hold the same rank among
_giomi_, or mosques, as the Cathedral of Milan among Christian churches.
Its clean and white appearance, the untarnished splendour of the gilded
railings which surround that sacred spot, pointing eastward towards
Mecca, the burial-place of the Prophet; together with the rich and
brilliant patterns of the soft carpets that overspread the floor, called
forth unqualified admiration from the whole party. We were equally
pleased with the assiduity and politeness of the mufti, or priest, who
acted as our conductor, in explaining every thing worthy of notice; as
well as the purposes to which the different portions of the edifice were

By this time, our fair American friends had pretty well satisfied their
curiosity; and they judiciously resolved not to weaken these favourable
impressions, by visiting any less respectable mosque. For my own part, I
had been congratulating myself on the pleasure I should enjoy, in
making a sort of pilgrimage to that of the lovely, gentle, and virtuous
Rose, better known by the name of the Sultana Validè: but the ladies
out-voted me; and, after expending a vast deal of eloquence in vain
endeavours to inspire them with a portion of my sentimental enthusiasm,
I was reluctantly compelled to submit to the disappointment; it being
impracticable to get admitted any where without the firman. I therefore
made my bow, and returned to Terapia, to complete the necessary
arrangements for our intended departure.

_Friday, 21st._--I again visited many of the beautiful spots in the
vicinity of my residence, to-day; and crossed over to the Sultan's
Valley to bid it a final adieu. In recalling to mind, hereafter, the
scenes and occurrences of which I was there a partaker, I anticipate
even more pleasure than was produced by their actual enjoyment. "Hæc
olim meminisse juvabit."

[Sidenote: FATE OF CONSTANTINOPLE.] _Saturday, 22d._--To-day is,
probably, the last of my present sojourn in a neighbourhood where I have
passed so many happy hours; and I cannot help reflecting on the
important changes which may take place in the destiny of this empire
before I visit its capital again, in case it should ever be my good
fortune to return. Who can at present decide whether the white-haired
Russian or the cunning Egyptian, the subtle Greek or the ambitious Gaul,
shall be the future monarch of the Queen of cities, and occupy the
throne of the Cæsars and the Prophet? Yet, come what may, her glory can
suffer but a temporary eclipse; for, independently of the vast political
advantages of her position, the beauty of her capacious harbour, which,
from the earliest period, has been crowded with the rich navies of the
East and West, and which acquired from that circumstance the appellation
of the Golden Horn, points out Constantinople as the mistress of a great
empire. "The genius of the place will ever triumph over the accidents of
time and fortune."

[Sidenote: ARMENIAN PAINTER.] Having bidden farewell to the officers of
the Actæon (the best and worthiest set of fellows whom I ever had the
happiness of knowing), and taken leave at the embassy[18], I glided away
on the rapid current; and soon Terapia[19], "the abode of health," was
entirely lost to the view. After seeing my baggage safely deposited on
board the Francesco, I hastened into Stamboul to take leave of Mustapha;
and having given the worthy old Turk a hearty shake of the hand, I
returned to Pera. The old Armenian, who paints the costumes of the Turks
in water-colours, was there in waiting for me; and after disburthening
him of all his collection, I copied the portrait of a Georgian slave,
which he had in his possession. She was another rare specimen of Eastern
loveliness. The evening was finished at Cartwright's, where we took a
"doch'an doras," and bade farewell to that honest warm-hearted jovial

[Sidenote: POETICAL DESCRIPTION.] _Sunday, 23d._--At 8 o'clock all were
on board; and the Prince having done us the honour to be punctual, in
one hour afterwards the anchor was up, the steam on, and away we went
round the Seraglio Point; leaving the

  "Queen of the morn! Sultana of the East!
   City of wonders, on whose sparkling breast
   Fair, slight and tall, a thousand palaces
   Fling their gay shadows over golden seas!
   Where towers and domes bestud the gorgeous land,
   And countless masts a mimic forest stand;
   Where cypress shades; the minarets snowy hue,
   And gleams of gold dissolve on skies of blue;
   Daughter of Eastern art! the most divine,
   Lovely, yet faithless bride of Constantine:
   Fair Istamboul, whose tranquil mirror flings,
   Back with delight thy thousand colourings;
   And who no equal in the world dost know
   Save thy own image, pictured thus below!
   Dazzled--amazed--our eyes, half-blinded, fail,
   While sweeps the phantasm past our gliding sail.
   Like as in festive scene, some sudden light
   Rises in clouds of stars upon the sight.
   Struck with a splendour never seen before,
   Drunk with the perfumes wafted from the shore;
   Approaching near these peopled groves we deem
   That from enchantment rose the gorgeous dream.
   Day without voice;--and motion without sound;
   Silently beautiful! this haunted ground
   Is paved with roofs beyond the bounds of sight,
   Countless and colour'd; wrapp'd in golden light!
   'Mid groves of cypress, measureless and vast,
   In thousand forms of crescents, circles, cast,
   Gold glitters; spangling all the wide extent,
   And flashes back to Heaven the rays it sent.
   Gardens and domes--bazars, begem the woods--
   Seraglio, harems, peopled solitudes,
   Where the veil'd idol kneels; and vistas through
   Barr'd lattices, that give th' enamoured view;
   Flowers, orange-trees--and waters sparkling near.
   And black and lovely eyes, alas! that fear
   At those heaven-gates dark sentinels should stand
   To scare even fancy from her promised land."[20]
   I long'd to see the isles that gem
   Old Ocean's purple diadem.
   I sought by turns--and saw them.

The Seraglio and its dark groves; the gilded domes and their snowy,
arrow-like minarets; the Seven Towers, with their fancy-pictured
terrors, fade gradually from my sight, as the steam-boat rapidly ploughs
the glassy wave. The eye, straining itself for a last glimpse of the
beautiful city, beholds it resting, like a phantom, on the indistinct
verge where heaven and the waters meet, until it sinks into the bosom of
the unruffled ocean.

[Sidenote: MY FELLOW PASSENGERS.] What a motley crew! A royal prince;
Spanish nobles; Italian counts; French marquises; Dutch chevaliers; and,
I may proudly add, English gentlemen. We had also a quack doctor from
Paris; a gaming-house-keeper from Milan; a clergyman, poor as an
Apostle, from Iceland; a grim-looking student from the University of
Göttingen; a Danish baron, music-mad; a singing count from Sienna; a
crazy architect from Paris; and two Russian noblemen. There were only
two ladies;--a Russian countess, who read nothing but Homer, and made
classical mistakes; and a Bavarian lady, whose great merit was her
inclination to render herself agreeable. Then there were the chief
captain, the second captain, and the sub-captain; the manager, second
manager, and sub-manager. However, two things most necessary to the
establishment were still wanting; namely, a good cook, and an honest

[Sidenote: MARBLE QUARRIES.] The vessel carried a Neapolitan pennant,
and was armed with six brass cannon, a very sufficient stand of
small-arms, and a forest of boarding-pikes; in case we should be
attacked by any of the pirates infesting the Greek Archipelago. An
awning was spread over its spacious deck, under which we lived like a
swarm of flies, fifty in number, feeding on detestable provender, and
sleeping in beds remarkable for uncleanness and their innumerable
parasitical tenants. The place marked on our route to be first visited
was that part of the Island of Marmora containing the quarries which
have supplied Constantinople with building materials from time
immemorial; but in reference to the precise spot where they were to be
found, there were as many opinions as voices. The truth was plain, no
one knew; neither captains, managers, pilots (of whom there were two),
nor tourists; and in the midst of our Babylonish discussion, the boat
arrived off the town of Marmora; and, of course, on the wrong side of
the island for our purpose. Some insisted on returning; others were for
crossing the isle on mules, or, if these could not be procured, on
foot: but the majority, of which I was one, seemed satisfied with
staying where fortune and steam had brought them. When the quarryites
landed, they found it would take fourteen hours to visit their _lion_,
and, as luck would have it, twelve hours only were marked on the
itinerary as the period allowed for the passengers to remain at the
island. Backed by this powerful argument, we the anti-quarryites demanded
a ballot, and an overwhelming majority decided that the boat should
start at midnight.

[Sidenote: GREEK DEPUTATION.] Soon after the return of the passengers
who had landed, a deputation of the inhabitants, consisting of the papa,
or chief priest, with some of his brethren, as well as the civil
authorities, all Greeks, came on board to compliment the brother of
their King. As the Prince did not understand one word of their language,
he begged Madame Manochini (the owner of a lodging-house at Smyrna, who
had been treated to a passage to Stamboul and back) to be his
interpretress. After thanking them in his name, she enquired if they had
any daughters?


"Are they pretty?"

Each father expatiated on the superior beauty of his own child; and the
papa added that his was angelic,--"[Greek: Kalê kalê]." "Then,"
continued Madame, "I am desired to say, the Prince is very much obliged
to you for your visit, and requests that you will immediately send the
prettiest maiden of the whole to bear him company on board." Perfectly
thunderstruck at this extraordinary address, the papa and his brethren
looked first at each other, then at Madame and the Prince; and, making a
hurried bow to the German Pasha, they jostled one another down the
ladder, and into their boat, with a rapidity that amused as well as
surprised us all; for, at the time, we were unacquainted with the nature
of this audacious reply. They probably took him for a _vardoulacha_, or
vampire, and thought to themselves, "If this Prince is such a curiosity,
what must little Otho be!"

Well, of course his Royal Highness demanded the meaning of their abrupt
and sudden flight, and wished to know what Madame had said to scare the
holy fathers thus? "Was the reply complimentary? if so, it had produced
a most extraordinary effect: they could not be pleased, that was

"Oh yes," answered she, with a satirical smile; "I said you were
delighted to see them, and that, knowing they had plenty of handsome
daughters, you desired them to send the prettiest on board to bear your
Highness company."

His Highness looked somewhat foolish: he did not know what to say; and
appeared little less chagrined himself, than the Greek papas of the Isle
of Marmora. We afterwards understood that the Prince had made some
reductions in her bill while he occupied her house at Smyrna; and, by
way of retaliation, she thus insolently attempted to injure his
character among her countrymen; and, I have no doubt, completely
succeeded, as far as the Greeks of this island are concerned.

[Sidenote: PLEASANT DORMITORY.] _Monday, 24th._--Myself and four
companions in misery have passed a horrible night in a cabin worse than
the Black Hole of Calcutta. The offensive odour from the chicken-coop,
which stands just at the side of the only aperture where fresh air can
find an entrance; the heat of the confined chamber; the myriads of
insects, that devoured my body with ravenous appetite, after having
endured a fortnight's starvation; kept me in such a fever, that I vowed
never to enter the cabin again. [Sidenote: EXTRAORDINARY
TRANSFORMATION.] When I looked out, my fellow-passengers burst into a
laugh; and Barrow, taking an observation, as my phiz came to the
meridian above them, exclaimed, "Who has been painting your face? it is
as yellow as a canary-bird!" "Nonsense!" I exclaimed; and, jumping upon
deck, I seized my glass, and saw myself indeed as yellow as our good
King's face on a sovereign. Not my face only, but, by all that's
startling! hands, arms, legs, body, were in the same condition, as
though I had been plunged into a curry-pot. I beheld myself with
jaundiced eyes! It was wholly inexplicable; for I had not suffered a
moment's illness, since I arrived in Stamboul; neither have I felt any
symptoms of approaching disease; yet, in one night, my skin has been
gilded over like a counterfeit sovereign,--

  "Suffering a _yellow_ change
   Into something rich and strange."

Nevertheless, I am afraid, unlike the false coinage, the gilt will not
very easily rub off. On my first appearance, I observed the French
doctor, who seemed to possess a hawk's eye for business, vanish from the
quarter deck, and descend hastily below; in a few minutes he reappeared,
bearing in his hand an ample supply of his _rob_; but I declined his
services, as a medical officer from Corfu undertook to give me the
necessary advice. We had also an English physician, and the Prince's

[Sidenote: BRITISH FLEET.] At the Dardanelles we learned the very
interesting news that the English fleet had arrived in Basiké Bay; and
in swinging round "old Sigæum," we beheld the Admiral's ship at anchor,
and several other large vessels sailing towards the harbour. At mid-day
we were alongside the Britannia; and a boat came off from her, to ask
intelligence from Constantinople. As I was anxious to renew my
acquaintance with Sir Pulteney Malcolm, and as many of the passengers
wished to see the ship, the boat took as many as could get into her, and
in a few minutes we stood on the deck of the largest of those majestic
floating castles which, I trust, are destined, ere long, to teach the
Russian that all "Old England's wooden walls" have not got the dry rot
in them. It is some years since I had the pleasure of seeing the Admiral
before; and though the march of time has imprinted on his noble figure a
few slight traces of its progress, yet he appears to be as active,
enterprising, and determined as ever. He accompanied us over the ship;
and was very anxious that we should inspect his improved kitchen,
cattle-pen, and newly invented gun-screws for elevating the breech of
the cannon. After a hearty luncheon, during which I forgot all my
jaundice, we took leave, and on entering the Captain's gig the Francesco
hoisted the British colours, and saluted. The compliment was
immediately returned, and the thunder of the cannon re-echoed from
Tenedos, and spread itself over the Plain of Troy, with a report loud
enough to rouse Achilles, Ajax, and Hector, from their graves,--

  "That with the hurly, death itself might wake."

It was a beautiful, no less than a proud and gratifying sight to behold
the Malabar, the St. Vincent, and the Alfred, all sailing in with every
stitch of canvass set; telegraphing the Britannia, and with the utmost
precision taking up their positions as the Admiral announced them. At
that moment there could not have been a soul on board the Francesco who
did not acknowledge the superiority of Britain on the seas.

[Sidenote: GULF OF SMYRNA.] Passing Mitylene and the opposite ruins of
Assos, we entered the Gulf of Smyrna as it was growing dark. As I was by
no means comfortable from a slight fever which enervated me, I
determined to sleep below no longer, and therefore brought my mattress
on deck. I laid it out near the cabin skylight, and there courted sleep,
rolled in my _Greco_. Thank Heaven and a clear sky for most delicious

Towards morning, I was awakened by a sensation of damp and cold; and
found myself and mattress soaking wet, and exhaling the odour of
rose-water. I found that a stream of this rich perfume had inundated me;
it was flowing from a large jar belonging to one of the passengers,
which, standing too near the tiller of the helm, had been broken by it
during the night.

[Sidenote: FRENCH SQUADRON.] _Tuesday, 25th._--This morning we saw the
French fleet lying at Vourla. The four combatants on these seas have
thus passed in review before us; and I cannot suppose England and France
have sent their fleets here on a pleasure trip; but that they actually
mean to do something effective. Of these four, the Russian is the
weakest, and the Turk the next in inferiority: report says, also, that
the French fleet is not in the most perfect order; but, at all events,
it is equal, if not superior, to the two former united. As soon as we
came in sight of the Madagascar, which was lying in the harbour or
roadstead of Smyrna, a boat put off from it towards the steam-vessel,
and in a few moments the King of Greece was in the arms of his brother.
The usual bustle incident to the transfer of luggage from one vessel to
another, at sea, followed; and the Prince, with all his suite, left us,
to accompany the King in his cruise on board the Madagascar.

[Sidenote: SMYRNA.] We established our quarters at a wretched little
inn, close to the water-side, kept by a negro, who had been cook on
board some English man-of-war. Unpromising as was its external
appearance, the house was clean notwithstanding; and, having all to
ourselves, except the billiard-room, we got on famously; particularly as
the dinners were wholesome, and of good, plain, English cookery. We had
plenty of soda-water, porter, and ale, which were kept constantly
flowing; for the heat was excessive. In the evening, I strolled about
this celebrated sea-port for a short time, and was much struck with the
beautiful appearance of the houses of the merchants, which, however, are
situated in narrow dirty streets. The bazars are much inferior to those
of Constantinople; and I did not see a single Smyrniote woman who had
any pretensions to beauty. In the course of the day the King landed
_incog._, and went through the town; and towards night, the Madagascar
sailed away for Syra.

[Sidenote: DEPARTURE FOR SYRA.] _Thursday, 27th._--Hotter by several
degrees than yesterday: I wish to heaven we could get away from this
broiling place. Not a breath of air stirs to relieve me, or mitigate the
weakness and fainting with which I am oppressed. I am incapable of
exertion, and, indeed, there is no inducement to walk out: it is too
much labour to play at billiards; and smoking sickens and disgusts me:
I have but one pleasure, if such it can be called; namely, that of lying
on the sofa, in a state of stupor. This afternoon the American corvette
John Adams sailed away in fine style.

_Friday, 28th._--Another oppressive day: a storm of thunder and rain,
during the night, has had no effect in cooling the air. I walked out on
the Marina in the evening; and having ascertained that they produce ices
in great perfection at Smyrna, I have fully availed myself of the
discovery, and the day was spent in cooling one's interior, as no means
could be found to do the same for the outward man.

_Saturday, 29th._--This morning the Rover, a very pretty and
wicked-looking sloop, came in from the West, and sailed again soon
after. I was occupied this entire day in making blue and white lights to
burn in the grotto of Antiparos. By midnight all the passengers and crew
were in their places on board the steamer; and the ladders were hauled
up, the cook's assistant being the only individual missing. Our object
was, to get a day off the quarantine, by having every one on board
before midnight, and making that day count as one, as we might be said
to have nominally left Smyrna on it. The Spaniards returned to the
vessel, accompanied by a band, and three boat-loads of ladies, who
continued sailing round and round the vessel until a very early hour, so
unwilling were they to say farewell.

[Sidenote: FORTUNATE ESCAPE.] One of the young gallants, in leaning over
the bows of the boat, overbalanced himself, and dropped into the water,
from whence he was quickly rescued by these fair damsels, who thus
became the guardian Naiads of the place; for without their assistance he
most probably would have been drowned.

[Illustration: HOUSES IN SCIO.]

_Sunday, 30th._--At five this morning we bade adieu to Smyrna; and never
did I send aloft a more sincere prayer than when petitioning to see it
no more. By the forenoon, we were off the Island of Scio, the coast of
which presented much beautiful and picturesque scenery. The wind now
gradually increased to a stiff breeze, and the weather became
threatening; so that the first symptoms of turning in made their
appearance among the passengers. The night following was black and
stormy, and we had reason to anticipate an Archipelago gale:
fortunately, however, it cleared up, much to the satisfaction of the
captain and myself; for never did a boat traverse these seas with less
of the seaman in the composition of its crew, from the said captain down
to the slop-boy.

[Sidenote: QUARANTINE.] _Monday, July 1st._--The Island of Tinos was in
sight at daylight this morning; and, passing through the channel between
it and Andros, we approached Syra, the quarantine station of the new
Greek kingdom for all vessels coming from Smyrna or the plague
countries. The situation of Syra is very beautiful; the houses rising
gradually in a succession of terraces, built upon the slope of a steep
mountain, situated at the bottom of an extensive bay, in which we found
the Madagascar lying at anchor.

[Sidenote: KING OF GREECE.] Shortly after our arrival, the officers of
health came alongside, and informed us we were destined to seven days'
quarantine. Of these, the day we left Smyrna counted as one, that passed
at sea as another, and the one on which we got _pratique_ as a third;
so we had, in reality, only four days to remain in _durance vile_. To
console us for the unwelcome detention, the inhabitants brought off
quantities of delicious fruit, honey, and meat to regale our appetites;
while, in the evening, our eyes were gratified with the brilliant
spectacle afforded by the illumination of the Madagascar and the town.
The presence of the King seemed to have transported the good people of
the island beyond themselves: such firing of guns and blazing of
bonfires, such screaming and hallooing, probably never before disturbed
the quiet precincts of Syra. His Majesty gets _pratique_ to-morrow, and
there is to be a dinner and ball ashore. We could plainly discern them
making preparations, and decorating the governor's house, but had no
prospect of partaking of these festivities.

It was very late before I could get asleep, owing to the gambling going
forward on deck until two o'clock in the morning. There was a _rouge et
noir_ table, and a whist party, by both of which very high stakes were
played, much to the annoyance of the better disposed passengers, who
wished for rest and quietness.

[Sidenote: SHIP LAUNCH.] _Tuesday, 2d._--At nine o'clock, after dressing
the ship in her colours, and receiving a salute from the shore, the King
left the Madagascar in the captain's gig. A deputation of the principal
inhabitants awaited his arrival, and the keys of the town, according to
"ancient and approved usage," were delivered to him under a triumphal
arch. The governor then addressed him in a Greek speech, to which his
Majesty replied; but in what language the court newsman has not thought
fit to inform us. After parading through the town, the procession
arrived at the governor's, where the King held a levee. In the
afternoon, he returned to the vessel, on board of which a dinner was
given to the principal inhabitants; and again the poor Greeks illumined
their houses and burnt bonfires.

The English in the steamer set up a singing-party this evening, in
opposition to the hazard-players; and we kept it up until there was a
dissolution of the card table; it being impossible either to gain or
lose money with any satisfaction while the jovial chorus disturbed their

[Sidenote: INHABITANTS OF SYRA.] _Wednesday, 3d._--Great preparations
were made for a ship-launch; and again the King went in state to the
governor's residence, and proceeded thence to the dockyard, where he
performed the ceremony of naming a small vessel; which glided
beautifully into the ocean amid salvos of artillery, volleys of
small-arms, and the cheers of the surrounding spectators. The grand
festival and ball took place on shore in the evening; when they kept it
up till past midnight; and the moment the King and his party returned on
board, the Madagascar set sail, and "left us alone in our glory." It
seems rather extraordinary that the Prince of Bavaria had not the
inclination, as he certainly had the power, to put off these _fêtes_
until the passengers of the Francesco, with whom he had sailed for two
months, and to whom he was now under some obligation, could have
participated in them. There was no reason for hurry; there existed no
necessity for the King's immediate return to Nauplia; in short, no
excuse can be found to palliate such paltry, ungenerous, unfeeling
conduct: certainly unfeeling, when it is considered that his
fellow-travellers were witnesses of these festivities, without the
possibility of joining in them.

_Friday, 5th._--By the first boat which came alongside to-day, many of
the more restless part of our crew hurried ashore. I remained on board
till the evening; and amused myself, during the interval, in watching
the numerous boats, crowded with the inhabitants, which came off to
visit the steamer. I did not notice a single Greek woman who maintained
the reputation of her countrywomen for any thing but ugliness; and none
of the men were of that fine race of beings whom I expected to see.
There was nothing national in their costume; the women being mostly
dressed in imitation of the Parisian mode; and, apparently, many of the
men took their cut from Bond Street. Over a cabinet in the
billiard-room, I afterwards observed several plates from the "Courrier
des Dames;" and as Syra is destined to be the principal port of the
Greek islands, I presume its inhabitants wish also to show themselves
leaders in the march of improvement. Of course, the ladies will prefer
stiff stays, gigot sleeves, and spacious bustle, to the loose jacket,
short petticoat, and coloured stockings of their grandmothers.

[Sidenote: GRAND FESTA.] There is to be a grand _festa_ this evening,
to-day being the eve of the [Greek: genethlion tou prodromou], or birth
of St. John the Baptist. There was an incessant firing of muskets and
petards; which proved that the gunpowder had not been all expended upon
King Otho. Towards night, every one lighted a large bonfire before his
house, and the favourite amusement seemed to be, who would run the
oftenest through it when the blaze was at the fiercest. Shouts of
laughter burst from the crowd, as each unlucky wight issued, scorched
and singed, from the fiery trial; while the applause was proportionate
towards those who ventured bravely, and escaped uninjured.

Many of us joined in the sport, leaping through the mass of newly
kindled flame, and, among others, I had the satisfaction of presenting
myself on the other side, _minus_ a good portion of whiskers, and with
eyelashes singed into little tufts, close to the lid.

[Sidenote: SYRA.] Syra, like many of the Greek towns, is best seen at a
distance; for it is, in reality, but an insignificant place, and there
is not a respectable street in it. The houses, too, are low and dirty;
and a disagreeable smell of dried fish and bad olives salutes one in
every quarter. However, the inhabitants appear to be wealthy and
enterprising; and at some future period it may become a large, populous,
flourishing city.

_Saturday, 6th._--We started at midnight, and in the morning were off
St. Nicolo, in the island of Tinos. The town is very pretty; and the
house of the bishop, near the church, is a very favourable specimen of
Greek domestic architecture.

[Sidenote: LADIES OF MYCONE.] After remaining here a short time, we
proceeded on our course to Mycone. Several boat-loads of the natives put
off to see the vessel; and on being received on board, they expressed
the greatest surprise and admiration at the size and beauty of the
steamer's cabin and deck. On our part, we were no less gratified with
the graceful, varied costume, worn by our island visitors; one of whom,
a female, was dressed in a most superb style; and being also exceedingly
pretty, she set off her decorations to great advantage. Dark eyelashes
overshadowed a pair of eyes, blue, soft, and beautiful as the heaven of
her native clime. A shawl of parti-coloured silk was so disposed upon
her head as to cover its upper part, and form a bow on the right side;
while the ends hung over each ear, allowing the rich tresses of her
glossy auburn hair to flow from under them unconfined. A plain loose
jacket of light blue cloth covered a deep-red bodice laced close to the
form; and a petticoat of the same colour, descending in ample folds to
the knee, was fastened round the waist by a narrow black silk shawl. Her
stockings were black, and the garters vermilion. Another lady of the
party, a dark beauty, also wore a dress of rich and elegant fashion. Her
hair, black as jet, was closely bound round her head, and fastened in a
knot upon the crown, as one sees it arranged on the Greek statues. A
thin gauze veil, ornamented at the two extremities with flowers and gold
embroidery, was thrown carelessly over this elegant _coiffure_,
heightening and adding new graces to a beauty it was intended to
conceal. Her jacket was of green velvet braided with gold, and lined
with white silk. The remainder of her dress consisted of rose-coloured
silk; and a magnificent shawl, of that brilliant red and yellow pattern
so common among the Greeks, encircled her waist. I believe she was the
wife of the Neapolitan consul, who also fulfilled the duties of that
office for half a dozen countries besides.

[Sidenote: VULGAR TOURISTS.] Proceeding next to Delos, we anchored
opposite Mount Cynthus, and went on shore immediately, to visit the
ruins of the theatre, and of some vast temple, built upon the ascent of
that hill. Thence we passed to the Thermæ, and to the ruins of the great
Temple of Apollo, which cover an immense extent of ground, where
capitals, columns, architraves, friezes, and cornices, lie mingled in
undistinguished confusion; and from their size and number they had more
the appearance of the fragments of some fallen mountain, than the
remains of man's handiwork. While engaged in contemplating these
stupendous ruins, the rest of the party wandered about, and saw many
things which necessarily escaped my observation. But four hours only
were granted us to examine one of the most interesting of the places
marked down in the itinerary; and it was necessary to hurry over the
scene. It really seemed, that the feelings of the generality of our
tourists must be of a very low and vulgar description, thus to visit any
spot consecrated by history or fable, as it were for an instant, merely
to gratify the empty vanity of being able to say "Oh! _I_ have been
there;" and then to hurry on towards the next object with the same
heartless indifference. How different is their conduct on arriving at
the busy haunts of men, which promise balls, dinners, or festás! Then,
hours and days are not sufficient for the gratification of their
favourite enjoyments, and every stratagem is put in practice to create

Hardly one third of the passengers landed at Delos, yet five days were
absolutely lost in Smyrna. The same parties who grumbled, and grudged
four short hours at this isle, would have detained us as many days over
the number specified in the city of figs, had they been permitted. Nor
was the cool morning, or evening, freshened by the never-failing breeze,
selected for going ashore; but the very hottest time of day, when on
this treeless, barren, granite island, the reflection of light and heat
is almost insupportable: when Apollo darts his fiercest rays on those
who wander to seek his fane, and Diana was unable to offer them any
cool, shady retreat which, at such an hour, she would herself have loved
so well. Yonder, under the soot-imbued awning of the Francesco, sits
many a listless cold-hearted being gazing without emotion,--

            ----"on the sacred place,
  Where once stood shrines and gods;"

and with no enviable feelings putting the question to him, who, with his
imagination rapt on the thoughts of other days, hastens to the classic
shore:--"_What is the use of running out in the sun; cannot you see
those piles of stones from the deck?_"--Senseless, unfeeling, sordid,
and degraded! what can have induced you to approach this consecrated

[Sidenote: A MODERN ANTIQUE.]There was one of our party who thought he
had made a grand discovery and capture. With great labour and exertion,
we carried for him to the water's edge a large block of marble,
resembling a portion of a basin or font. He at once decided, that it had
been some receptacle for water belonging to the temple, and resolved on
carrying it to Palermo. Unfortunately, however, it was shortly
afterwards recognised to be nothing more than a Turkish mortar for
pounding the sulphur, nitre, and charcoal used in the manufacture of
gunpowder; and on examination, there was no doubt of its being perfectly
modern. "Never mind," said its proprietor; "it shall go to my palace;
and there being no reason to explain what it really is only _whence_ it
came, the Sicilians will admire and venerate it as a relic from Delos!"

[Sidenote: BEAUTIFUL ANCHORAGE.] _Sunday, 7th._--In the middle of the
night we started for Naxos, bidding adieu to Delos over a cup "mantling
with rosy wine," and with the song of sociality; thus worshipping the
glorious gods of the table, as, leaving the temple of the one, we
approached the spot hallowed by the worship of the other. Where, indeed,
should the chorus sound more joyously than in the waters of Delos, or
the sparkling wine flow faster than in the sight of Naxos?

It was a beautiful night; the moon shone with resplendent lustre, and
the sea, calm and unruffled as a mountain lake, reflected all its beams,
until each rippling wave became like molten silver.

Crossing from Naxos to Paros, and coasting along the latter mountainous
isle, we stopped opposite the town of the same name, to discover the
most convenient anchorage, for visiting the celebrated grotto. While
waiting for the necessary information, several of the passengers went in
search of the quarries which supplied the ancients with marble; but as,
without interpreters, they could not make themselves understood, they
returned unsuccessful. We, however, were fortunate in meeting with a
rich proprietor, who lived opposite the grotto and village of Antiparos,
and who promised to have men and torches ready for us by daylight. We
then started again, and at length dropt anchor in a beautiful strait
between the two islands. The greatest caution is requisite in getting to
this position; the passage being extremely narrow, and the water
shallow: the latter was so beautifully transparent, that each pebble on
the yellow sand appeared distinctly visible, and myriads of sportive
fish were seen darting in every direction from the clamorous hissing
monster that invaded their quiet abode.

[Illustration: [Drawn &] Etched by G[eorge]. C[ruikshank], from a Sketch
               by the Author.

Grotto Antiparos.

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

[Sidenote: VISIT TO ANTIPAROS.] _Monday, 8th._--The expedition to
Antiparos seemed to suit the general taste, and all were ready by the
appointed hour. At four o'clock we embarked in two large country boats,
and proceeding through the strait, we landed in a little bay, and found
an assemblage of donkeys and guides awaiting our arrival. The distance,
as we were informed, was two hours, and all being mounted, away we
started on this grotto chase at a double quick step; so that in a short
time many began to show symptoms of fatigue. For the first half hour the
country appeared almost destitute of trees, but arriving at length

[Sidenote: MARINE PROSPECT.] on the brow of a hill, after a long and
gradual ascent, a richly cultivated and finely wooded hollow, surrounded
by mountains, opened upon our view. As the abrupt faces of these
eminences form an insurmountable barrier on three sides of the basin
just alluded to, we fancied that the grotto must be there. But no! we
had to descend, cross it, and mount again towards the south, by a steep
path that wound up the least precipitous side of this punchbowl.
Hitherto the rock had been primitive limestone lying on gneiss, but we
now came upon a thick stratum of pure limestone.

[Illustration: Drawn & Etched by George. Cruikshank, from a Sketch by
               the Author.

Interior of the Grotto of Antiparas.

Published by Longman & Co. April, 1835.]

[Sidenote: ENTRANCE TO THE CAVERN.] Passing over the brow of a tolerably
high mountain, we found that it declined towards the south into the
plain; and thence to the sea by a gentle slope. The ground was covered
with myrtle and arbutus, and presented a wild but beautiful aspect. We
had now nearly reached the further end of the island, where a narrow
promontory extends far into the calm blue waters. Far off in the
distance appeared the islands of Sikyno and Raclia, floating like huge
birds upon the bosom of the waves. Close under the western shore, where
the island of Paros terminates in bold perpendicular cliffs, lay the
little island of Spotico; while all around, the sea bristled with rocks
as far as the eye could reach. On one side of a steep path, which we
were now slowly ascending, the guides pointed out a huge fissure or
break in the rock, which they said was the platform in front of the
grotto. At the further end of this cavern, behind a vast stalactite,
reaching from the roof to the ground, and suggesting to the imagination
the idea of some gigantic sentinel before the pit of Acheron, yawned a
low narrow opening, the interior of which presented to the view a more
than Egyptian darkness. Around this spot were assembled a band of
kirtled Greeks, provided with ropes, ladders, and flambeaux. Our
appearance was the signal for a general uproar: each commenced talking,
screaming, and fighting for possession of the ladies, and every now and
then edging in a word of French or English, by way of additional
recommendation. Much time was lost in squabbling for the torches, the
number of which proved to be less than that of the adventurers; and it
was only fair that "first come should be first served." Those who had
loitered behind complained bitterly of the deficiency in this respect;
especially the chevalier d'industrie from Milan, who, being less expert
with his feet than with his hands, had been one of the last to arrive.
Of his adroitness with the latter, he quickly gave us a specimen; for,
while one of my friends was peering into the entrance of this
Acherontic cave, he very cunningly appropriated his torch; and it was
not until the matter became serious, that he could be induced to restore

[Sidenote: PERILOUS DESCENT.] It was with feelings wrought up to a high
degree of excitement, in which I believe all my companions participated,
that I heard the order given to advance, when the whole party trod
closely on the footsteps of the guides, who preceded us with torches.
Our speed, however, soon received a check; for by the time we had
advanced fifteen or twenty paces, the light of day entirely failed us.
All now became enveloped in utter darkness, except a small space in
front, where the tapers of our conductors, nearly extinguished by the
damp and unwholesome atmosphere, emitted a pale and livid blaze, which,
failing to reveal the extent and termination of this frightful cavern,
produced a "darkness visible," and magnified every danger. It was a
long, narrow, winding chasm, gradually increasing in the abruptness of
the descent as we advanced; and the floor, that consisted of carbonate
of lime, was rendered slippery as ice by the damp and the friction of
the feet of those who, for the last three thousand years, have visited
this extraordinary place from motives similar to our own. A single cable
of no very satisfactory appearance was all we had to depend upon for
support, and it chafed against the sharp, rugged, angular projections of
the rocks in a fearful manner, when violently dragged from side to side
by the united action of the forty individuals who clung to it. The
feelings of insecurity to which this naturally gave rise were not at all
diminished by the shrieks and exclamations of terror proceeding from
such as lost their footing upon the polished floor, and lay struggling
in ineffectual efforts to get up, without letting go the rope. My own
personal safety did not so wholly occupy my attention as to prevent me
from being affected with wonder and admiration at the exceeding beauty
of some portions of this subterranean corridor, which glittered in the
torch-light with a splendour no language can describe; for the
innumerable minute crystals scattered over its surface, glowed at one
moment with a deep blood-red, and at another exhibited all the different
hues of the most brilliant rainbow.

[Sidenote: MELODRAMATIC SCENE.] It is hardly possible to conceive a more
extraordinary spectacle than that in which I was now an actor: it was
perfectly melodramatic, and would make the fortune of any minor theatre
in London, though the pen of a Dante is alone equal to its description.
First and foremost, were seen the Greek guides exciting us to persevere,

[Sidenote: STRIFE OF TONGUES.] beckoning us onwards by waving the
flaming torches high above their heads; and when the light flashed upon
their savage countenances, wild streaming locks, and picturesque
garments, as well as over the pale, stumbling, struggling crowd which
followed, it required no great stretch of fancy to imagine that I saw
the attendant demons of some mighty sorcerer, the inhabitant of this
rocky den, deluding us onwards to destruction. The laughter, screams,
and hallooing, which accompanied our efforts to maintain a hold upon the
cable, our only hope of safety, united to the smoke and stench of the
flambeaux, rendered the whole scene no unapt representation of
Pandemonium. The Greeks shouted forth oaths, warnings, entreaties, and
directions, in their native tongue: with these were intermingled, in
indescribable confusion, the English "d--n," the French "sacre," the
German "mein Got," the Italian "corpo di Bacco," and the gentler
exclamations of certain of the fair sex who, strange to say, accompanied
us in this hazardous expedition.

[Sidenote: SYMPTOMS OF ALARM.] On reaching the brink of a most frightful
precipice, we were instructed to crawl down by means of some rude steps
cut in the surface of a sloping buttress or inclined plane of rock,
which appeared to extend to the bottom. The sight of this horrible den
acted as a "pretty considerable" sedative to our enthusiasm. Each
exclaimed to himself, (at least I did for one) "Can I venture?"--as he
contemplated the dismal, and, to all appearance, bottomless gulf, where
nothing was visible but the strange figures of our guides at a
prodigious distance beneath us, clinging to the wall with one hand,
while they brandished their torches with the other. However, there was
little space for reflection; and though, by this time, I shrewdly
suspect most of the party had pretty well "satisfied the sentiment," as
Sterne says, none were heard to say so; and after a short delay we
pushed on again, apparently regardless of danger. Our progress, however,
became every moment more and more difficult and discouraging; for this
rude and imperfect staircase, also slippery as ice, was covered with
loose stones, that came rattling down on our devoted heads at every
false step of those above; and many who had eagerly contested at the
outset for the distinction of leading the party, would now have gladly
made an inglorious retreat rearward, to escape the contusions, or
something worse, with which they were momentarily threatened; convinced,
with Falstaff, that "honour hath no skill in surgery."

[Sidenote: PETRIFIED GARDEN.] After remaining for a few minutes
suspended from the cord, like a cluster of bees in the act of swarming,
we again found ourselves on _terra firma_; and a passage behind some
masses of projecting rock brought me to a platform, in front of which
rose a stalagmite, admirably adapted by its position for the display of
my fireworks. Accordingly I let off a blue-light, which illuminated the
grotto beneath, the arches of which were of immense size; and their vast
ribs, protruding from the rock, and extending to a great height, formed
a magnificent dome, from which hung innumerable concretions of pointed
form. Masses of crystallised limestone grew from the floor in every
shape that fancy could picture. There were trees, teeth, flowers,
houses, men, &c.: in short, imagination never could exhaust itself in
pointing out resemblances between these phenomena, and the ordinary
productions of nature and art.

The predominance of the figures of trees, plants, and flowers among
these fantastical creations, gives to the whole grotto the appearance of
a petrified garden; but it was no slight drawback on our gratification
to find these objects covered with slime and mud, obscuring the
brilliant ever-changing hues of the myriads of crystals with which they
are studded, and which former travellers have alluded to in terms of
admiration. It was only when the blue flame shed its beautiful light
upon the scene, that it at all realised my preconceived ideas of this
"Palace of the genii, the most beautiful of fairy land," as it has been
frequently styled.

By a ladder fastened to the stalagmite, we descended into another
frightful cavern, where on one side several dismal-looking pits, like
the entrances to coal mines, and black pools of dirty, stagnant water,
menaced us with death under a twofold aspect, until we reached the
uneven and shelving floor of the grotto. There were several chambers,
more or less resembling each other, being separated from the grand nave
of this magnificent temple by the accumulation of the crystallising mass
for ages.

[Sidenote: DESCRIPTION BY A NAVAL OFFICER.] It is a scene that ought to
be visited by a few congenial spirits, quietly and leisurely. On the
present occasion the effect and the illusion were dissipated by the
glare of the torch lights, the hallooing and screaming of those present,
and the thumping of hammers and blocks of stone to get fragments of the
crystal. This part of the grotto is certainly the heaven, the paradise;
though, of a truth, the descent into it is through purgatory; an opinion
in which I am by no means singular; and in confirmation I shall beg
leave to introduce a portion of the narrative of a gallant officer
belonging to one of our vessels cruising in the Levant, who saw the
grotto under more favourable auspices than we did; though, like the poor
Frenchman, whom I shall have occasion to mention hereafter, he
acknowledges that he purchased the gratification at the cost of some
mortal terror.

[Sidenote: MAGNIFICENT PASSAGE.] Speaking of the deepest and most gloomy
of the caverns into which we had penetrated, he says:--"I was quite
disheartened at this horrible prospect, and declared I would go back,
but our guides assured us there was no danger, and the rest of the
company resolving to see the bottom after having come so far, I would
not leave them: so we went to a corner where was placed an old slippery
rotten ladder, which hung down close to the wall, and down this, one
after another, we at length descended. When we reached the bottom we
found ourselves at the entrance of another passage, which was indeed
horrible enough; but in this there was not wanting something of beauty.
It was a wide and gradual descent, at the entrance of which one of our
guides seated himself, and began to slide down, telling us we must do
the same. We could discover by the light of his torch that this passage
was one of the noblest in the world. It was about nine feet high, seven
wide, and had for its bottom a fine green glossy marble. The walls and
arch of the roof, being in many places as smooth as if wrought with art,
and made of a fine glittering red and white granite, supported here and
there with columns of a deep blood red shining porphyry, made with the
reflection of the lights an appearance not to be conceived. Our guides
could here keep on each side of us; and what with the prodigious beauty
and grandeur of the place, our easy travelling through it, and the
diversion of now and then running over one another whether we would or
not, made this the pleasantest part of the journey.

[Sidenote: EXCESSIVE TERROR.] "When we had passed about two hundred
yards, we found ourselves on the brink of another very terrible
precipice; but this our guides assured us was the last, and there being
a very good ladder to go down by, we readily ventured. After about forty
yards' walking, we were again presented by our guides with ropes, which
we fastened around our waists, though not to be swung by; but only for
fear of danger, as there are lakes and deep wells all the way hence on
the left hand. With this precaution, we entered the last alley; and
horrible work, indeed, it was to get through it. The sides and roof of
the passage were of black stone, and the rocks in our way were in some
places so steep, that we were forced to lie all along on our backs and
slide down; and so rough, that they cut our clothes and bruised us in
passing. Over our heads there were nothing but rugged black rocks, some
of them looking as if they were every moment ready to fall on us; and on
the left hand the light of our torches showed us continually the
surfaces of dirty and miserable-looking lakes of water.

[Sidenote: DISAPPEARANCE OF THE GUIDES.] "If I heartily repented my
expedition before, here I was in a cold perspiration, and fairly gave
myself up for lost, heartily cursing all the travellers that had written
of the place, because they had described it so as to tempt people to
visit it, without telling them of the horrors they must encounter in the
way. In the midst of these reflections, and in the very dismallest part
of the cavern, on a sudden we lost four of our six guides. What was my
horror on this occasion! The place was a thousand times more dark and
terrible for the want of their torches; and I expected no other but
every moment to follow them into one or the other of these lakes, into
which I doubted not they had fallen. The remaining two guides said all
they could to cheer us up, and told us we should see the other four
again soon, and that we were near the end of our journey. I do not know
what effect this might have had on my companions, but I believed no part
of their speech but the last, which I expected very soon to find
fulfilled in some pond or precipice: in that sense, indeed, we were near
our journey's end!

[Sidenote: SPLENDID TRANSITION.] "While engaged in meditating on the
perils that environed me, I suddenly heard a little hissing noise, and
found myself in utter and indescribable darkness. Our guides, indeed,
called cheerfully to us, and told us they had accidentally dropped their
torches into a puddle of water, but that they should soon reach their
companions, when they would light them again, and we had nothing to do
but crawl forward. I cannot say but that I was amazed at the courage of
these people in a place where I thought four of their number had already
perished, and from whence none of us could ever escape; and I determined
to lie down and die where I was.

"One of our guides, perceiving that I did not advance, came up to me,
and, clapping his fingers over my eyes, dragged me a few paces forward.
While I was in this strange condition, expecting every moment death in a
thousand shapes, and trembling to think what the fellow meant by this
rough proceeding, he lifted me at once over a great stone, set me down
upon my feet, and took his hand from before my eyes. What words can
describe my astonishment and transport at that instant! Instead of
darkness and despair, all was splendour and magnificence around me; the
place was illumined with fifty torches; and our guides, who all
reappeared about us, with a loud shout welcomed us to the Grotto of
Antiparos! The four that were first missing, I now found, had only given
us the slip to get the torches lighted up before we came; and the other
two had put out their lights on purpose, to make us enter out of utter
darkness into this pavilion of splendour and glory.

[Sidenote: DIMENSIONS OF THE GROTTO.] "The grotto is a cavern of about
120 yards wide, 113 long, and seems about 60 yards high in most places.
Imagine, then, an immense arch like this, almost entirely lined with
fine bright white marble, and the mind will then acquire some faint idea
of the place I had the pleasure to spend three hours in: this, however,
is but a very insufficient description of its beauties. The roof, which
consists of a fine vaulted arch, is hung all over with icicles of fine
white marble, some of them ten feet long, and as thick as one's middle
at the root; and among these there hung a thousand festoons of leaves
and flowers of the same substance, but so very glittering that there was
no bearing to look at them. All the sides of the arch are planted with
the representations of trees of the same white crystal, rising in rows
one above the other. From these trees were also hung festoons, tied, as
it were, from one to another, in vast quantities; and in some places
among them are seen rivers of marble flowing in a thousand meanders. All
these things have been produced, during a long series of years, by the
dropping of water, but really look like petrified trees and brooks. Our
guides had tied torches two or three to a pillar, and kept continually
beating them to make them burn bright: imagine, then, what a glare of
splendour and beauty must be the effect of this illumination among such
rocks and columns of marble. All around the lower part of the sides of
the arch are a thousand white masses of crystal, in the shape of oak
trees, which are in many places large enough for a bedchamber. One of
these chambers has a fine white curtain, whiter than satin, of the same
marble, stretching all over the front of it. In this we cut our names
and the date of the year."

[Sidenote: TERRIFIED FRENCHMAN.] I shall not dwell upon our return,
though it was, if possible, more laborious and difficult than the
descent. Just as I had got upon the first ladder and my white light was
extinguished, there arose the most shrill and piercing shriek I ever
remember to have heard, followed by loud exclamations of "Sauvez moi!
sauvez moi! je suis perdu!" It immediately occurred to me that some
unfortunate creature had fallen into the abyss; and, lowering my torch,
I beheld a figure convulsively grasping the rock with one hand and the
ladder with the other; while a Greek, who stood underneath, was
endeavouring to force him onwards. There he hung, in perfect safety,
though unable to assist himself; trembling like an aspen leaf, pale as
death, and crying like a child. After we had drawn him up, he sat down
for some time, to recover his scattered senses; and, positively, I could
hardly refrain from laughing as he made his piteous complaint. It seems,
without reflecting that the man did not understand a word of French, he
had charged the Greek, who followed him, not to get upon the ladder
until he was off. Just, however, as his hand was on the last step, he
felt some one climbing after him. The poor Frenchman's terror was then
at its height: he fancied the ladder slipping from under his feet, and,
grasping the wood still more tightly, in doing so he got his finger
pinched against the rock. In the exertion of releasing it, he nearly
overbalanced himself in reality, and again he screamed out with terror
and dismay! All this occurred in a brief instant; though, between his
tears and his heart throbbing, many minutes were consumed in the

[Sidenote: A HINT FOR THE LADIES.] I am not a little surprised that the
two ladies who accompanied the party had courage to descend into such a
place. In my opinion, excursions like these are by no means adapted to
either the mental or corporeal delicacy of the fair sex; and, however
disagreeable the position might have momentarily proved to them, it was
impossible to witness the tall slender figure of one of them, grasped in
the arms of a bearded swarthy Greek, now squeezed against the wall, now
almost astride upon his shoulders, without indulging in the laughter
such a spectacle was well calculated to inspire.

Thanks to the kind influence of the guardian genii of the cave, who
preserved us from falling victims to the perils of the way, we all got
safely out; and as each, begrimed with dirt, and black as a
chimney-sweep, emerged into upper air, enveloped in smoke, which now
issued in huge volumes from the cavern's mouth, he was received by his
companions with shouts of mirth that made the old vault echo again.
Verily, we could be likened to nothing but the devils in the opera of
Don Giovanni.

We now turned our steps again towards the village of Antiparos, and,
under the influence of those potent stimulants, hunger and thirst, got
over the ground more rapidly than might have been anticipated,
considering how exhausted the whole party felt previously to starting.
The time passed rapidly enough in the interchange of a good deal of
lively and amusing raillery on the truly laughable appearance which
every individual presented, with clothes rent almost to tatters, and
visage bedaubed with oil and soot; besides, each of us became the "hero
of his little tale," and could narrate a hundred perilous incidents and
hairbreadth escapes which he had encountered during his descent and
ascent from the "antres vast" of this extraordinary place.

It was eleven o'clock before we got on board, where all did ample homage
to the breakfast that awaited us.

[Sidenote: PORT OF MILO.] In the meantime the boat quitted the island,
and after sailing between Serpho and Siphanto, and coasting along the
Argentiera, all volcanic islands, she came in sight of the port of Milo.
By properly fortifying the entrance of this harbour, it might be
rendered perfectly impregnable. In shape it resembles a horse-shoe much
contracted at the two extremities; and consists of the crater of an
extinct volcano, the cone of which remains on three sides, but more or
less in a state of degradation. The town is built on the top of the
cone, and the whole island appears to be volcanic. In our passage here,
we sailed by the Pelican sloop of war, bound to Malta, on her voyage

[Sidenote: WARLIKE MOUNTAINEERS.] _Tuesday, 9th._--Early this morning,
the Madagascar came in, in fine style, with every sail set, and anchored
close to us. After bathing in the sea with the midshipmen, by leaping
off the vessel's chains, the King of Greece landed, to go up to the
town. The Greek soldiers and sailors, most of whom were pirates
formerly, hailed his disembarkation on an old Turkey carpet, with shouts
and acclamations, followed by a discharge of their long guns loaded with
ball; several of which plunged into the water within a few feet of the

When all was quiet we went ashore also, and landed on the snow-white
beach, formed of pumice stone, which sparkled in the sun's rays like
myriads of diamonds, and in which several large masses of grey lava,
exceedingly fragile, lay deeply imbedded.

[Sidenote: ANECDOTE.] In the paltry collection of wine-shops, here
dignified with the name of _village_, we saw a number of Greeks waiting
the return of Otho: each wore a gaily coloured kerchief on the head; an
embroidered jacket; a shawl encircling the waist; red greaves; a dirk;
and a long gun, ornamented with gold, slung over the shoulder. Their
wild fearless demeanour struck me as more characteristic of the
freebooter, than the soldier of a regular government. Yet seldom have I
seen more elegant graceful figures than were possessed by these mountain
robbers, whose robust symmetry rendered each one of them a perfect model
for the sculptor's art.

I went on board the Madagascar in the evening, and enjoyed a pleasant
_confab_ with the officers. There is a striking difference in the
tempers and dispositions of the two royal brothers; the one being
greatly beloved, while the other is disliked by every person in the
ship. The King is very kind and affable, giving no unnecessary trouble,
and mixing freely with the midshipmen and sailors: many a luncheon has
he partaken of in the _den_ of the former. His brother, on the contrary,
is all fuss and superciliousness; and the very first morning after he
embarked, the captain was compelled to read him a practical lecture on
the necessity of complying with the established regulations. He had been
told that, as punctuality was a most indispensable maxim on board a
man-of-war, where every thing depended on the example afforded to the
sailors by their officers and superiors, he would be expected at
breakfast by eight o'clock every morning.

[Sidenote: PARTING OF THE ROYAL BROTHERS.] On the following day, at the
hour prescribed, the King was seated at the cabin table, and, after
waiting a quarter of an hour, as the Prince came not, breakfast was
finished. About half past nine his Royal Highness made his _début_, and
expressed some surprise at seeing the table cleared; however, the
Captain told him he was sorry he had lost his breakfast, particularly as
it was a long time to dinner; and the regulations of the ship precluded
his having any meal served before that was ready. The Prince frowned and
looked marvellously discomfited; but, pocketing his lecture, he made an
apology, and went sulkily on deck.

The moment of parting between the royal brothers had now arrived, and
they came on board the steamer together at a late hour. The anchor was
already up:--"Give way!" cried the captain: the heir of Bavaria and the
hope of Greece fell into each other's arms; and, after a short embrace
and a kissing of each cheek, the latter hurried down the ladder; the
Prince hastened to his cabin; and in a few minutes more we were merrily
ploughing our way through the rippling waves of the calm and beautiful
harbour of Milo.

_Wednesday, 10th._--Cerigo was in sight this morning; and, after
coasting along its almost uninhabited shore, and rounding Cape Matapan,
we entered the Gulf of Coron,--the scene of one of the most beautiful
spirit-stirring poems that ever proceeded from the heaven-inspired pen
of Byron. We sailed slowly along its wild and wooded coast, anxious to
reach the town[21] of the same name in the evening; for, by going on
shore there, we might probably avoid some days' quarantine at Zante.

When off the island, a boat was sent ashore, and on its return we
started again, and, passing between the Isle of Venetico and the main
land, and rounding the point of Modon, we kept the high and barren coast
of Arcadia in sight.

[Sidenote: ZANTE.] _Thursday, 11th._--This morning Zante appeared in the
distance, and about mid-day we entered the harbour of this fine island.
The interior is a beautiful plain, rich in pastures, well wooded, and
cultivated with the greatest assiduity. The town looked clean and
cheerful: but we were not permitted to land; for it turned out that our
quarantine had been of no use. Seven additional days' purification being
required, we decided on starting again immediately. Several barge loads
of coal, therefore, were brought alongside, and, their crews having
quitted them (for they fled as if the plague had been actually on
board), our men got to work, and we soon had our quantum of fuel for the
voyage to Malta.

_Friday, 12th._--We landed ten passengers to-day; four of them British
officers belonging to the garrison of Corfu; and the other six,
disgusted with the boat, and with the prospect of twenty days' detention
at Malta, had resolved to await the steamer expected in six days from
the former place, and bound to Ancona, where they understood the
quarantine was limited to five days.

[Sidenote: SEA SICKNESS.] The swell becoming unpleasant towards evening,
one by one the passengers went below; and the Prince, turning gradually
pale, showed unequivocal symptoms of being affected by a malady which,
like death, is no respecter of persons, but fastens indifferently on the
sceptred monarch and the shoeless cowherd, when either ventures to go
"ploughing the billows of the faithless deep."

We took in two English passengers who had been making the tour of Greece
and Asia Minor, and who strongly advised the seceders not to trust to
the expected boat, but to stick to the Francesco. However; as they still
remained obstinately bent on following their own plans, we left them,
and were soon out in the Ionian Sea.

[Sidenote: VALETTA.] _Sunday, 14th._--At four o'clock this morning, the
mountains of Calabria, above Branco and Cape Spartivento, were visible.
About seven, Ætna reared its giant head, towering magnificently over the
scene through the clouds of mist that enveloped its base. At half-past
two we entered the harbour of Syracuse, after a few hours' delay,
started again in a gale. We had a very rough time of it during the
night, but to-morrow our troubles will end.

_Monday, 15th._--At daybreak a speck was seen in the horizon; now it is
visible above the hollow wave, now curtained from our sight by the
swelling billow: we approach nearer; the speck divides, and two spots
appear; they are Calypso's Isles,--

  "The sister tenants of the middle deep,
   There, for the weary, still a haven smiles,
   Though the fair goddess long hath ceased to weep."

[Sidenote: LAZZARETTO.] At ten o'clock we passed into the quarantine

What a formidable array of guns! what bustle in every direction! and
what a clean comfortable-looking place is this Valetta, with its white
houses encircled with verandas. What a contrast is afforded by the neat
trim boats, the well-appointed sentinel, and the civil, attentive
officer of health, when compared with what I have been so long
accustomed to! Every thing around bespeaks the influence of English
habits and feelings. The whole of the great lazzaretto and Fort Emanuel
were prepared for us: the latter for the Prince, and such as chose to go
there in preference to the former. We landed in a hurry; the object of
every one being to secure a good room for himself, as, with a piece of
chalk in hand, he wandered through the vast corridors of this immense
building. All were well satisfied. Myself and two friends agreed to mess
together, and we secured a couple of good apartments, one for a bed, and
the other for a sitting-room; to which two great comforts were attached,
namely, a thorough draught and a kitchen. Valetta supplied the necessary
furniture, and every luxury we required; and we made our engagements for
getting our dinners brought from thence daily. With a boat and a servant
in addition to these comforts, we found ourselves established in so
agreeable a manner, that our party became the envy of the surrounding
messes. Every liberty was permitted that the regulations of the place
could sanction; and we were allowed to row about the harbour, and amuse
ourselves in any other way we liked, from daybreak until night. Some of
the messes had regular cooks in their establishment; but I think our
plan was preferable, and we certainly lived better than they.

[Sidenote: DAYS OF QUARANTINE.] Notwithstanding the heat of the weather,
our domicile was cool, and the spacious apartments attached to the
building, and the cloisters below, afforded plenty of space for
exercise. In the evenings we generally visited the fort, or went to the
quarantine ground on the other side of the water: sometimes we took a
row out to sea; and, on our return, the English portion of the crew
generally came into our reception room, where we smoked, drank, and sang
far into the night. No musquitoes, no little blood-sucking tormentors,
were there to tease us; and the time passed gaily and delightfully. Thus
we held the even tenor of our course for a fortnight, when our
confinement had virtually expired; for though the established period of
quarantine was sixteen days, yet the one on which we went into the
lazzaretto, and that on which we came out, were allowed to count as two.
Though very few incidents occurred to break the uniformity of our lives,
the time flew on rapidly.

The gaming-table was established, as usual, by the foreigners; and heavy
were the fluctuations of fortune, if we might judge from the changeful
demeanour of those who frequented it. His Royal Highness never deigned
to visit us; indeed, it could hardly be expected he should do so, when
he did not even condescend to pay his respects to the ladies in the
fort, or the party there established, though living within the same
walls as himself.

In consequence of its having been decided that the boat was to go to
Alicata, Girgenti, and Palermo, I arranged with one of the passengers to
take a felucca and sail direct for Naples. The Pelican came in, and
immediately went off again to England, leaving her first lieutenant, who
was promoted, to join the boat for Naples. Some portion of every day was
spent at the parlatorio eating ices, and looking at the curious scene
going forward there; for some fresh ship daily arrived to undergo the
same ordeal as ourselves; or a knot of lucky fellows, having finished
their purgatory, were seen sallying forth to enjoy a ramble through the
clean and pleasant streets of Valetta.

[Sidenote: THE PARLATORIO.] The lazzaretto is a little world within
itself, highly interesting for many reasons; and I confess I felt rather
sorry as the time approached when we were to quit our quiet, tranquil
abode, and be again let loose upon the busy, noisy world.

We narrowly escaped having forty days allotted us, owing to the
circumstance of there being a quantity of carpets on board; but, by
entering them as ship's furniture, they were put into long quarantine,
and we escaped with a comparatively short one. Every passenger seemed to
possess two or three Persian carpets: Prince Butera had a great number;
but I saw none that were at all valuable.

[Sidenote: MALTESE WOMEN.] At the parlatorio we saw many of the Maltese
women coming to speak with their husbands, fathers, brothers, and
lovers; most of whom were sailors or owners of craft in the harbour.
Their dress is very becoming, and some of them were pretty. The black
silk mantilla is a very beautiful head dress, and much to be preferred
to the misshapen bonnet with which fashion commands the fair to
disfigure themselves in other parts of Europe. The petticoat is also of
black silk, with the body of white muslin. Some one likened them to
magpies: i'faith, they talked as fast; but who would not wish to hear
the beautiful Arabic flowing softly from such ruby lips, and watch the
smiling flashes of--

  "The coal-black eye, that mocks the coal-black veil?"

that pleasant lightning which warms, but scathes not.

Thus our time passed until--

_Sunday, 29th,_--when the medical officer of the establishment came
round to make the usual examination, which was over in a few minutes.
Our party were in bed when he entered; and, approaching each of us with
a bow, he said, "Pretty well?--ah! I see, quite well;"--and then, with
another congé, he left us. We afterwards understood that he addressed
every single person in the lazzaretto, the fort, and the vessel, from
the Prince to the Steward's boy, precisely with the same words.

_Tuesday, 30th._--I rose early, for the steam-packet from Corfu had
arrived in the night, and, lo! all the passengers who quitted us at
Zante were on board of her. It appears there had been a mistake in the
number of days first allotted them for quarantine; and, instead of
three, they were condemned to seven days' misery, all crowded together
in a very small building, where they suffered dreadfully from the
combined effect of heat, vermin, and bad living. The expected steam-boat
had met with an accident at sea, and she passed in sight of Zante,
without entering the harbour; so that these unlucky fellows were obliged
to hire a speranaro, in which, after being twice driven back, and
suffering various hardships and misfortunes, they arrived at Corfu.

There was no truth in the report respecting the short quarantine at
Ancona, and, eventually, they all embarked in the steam-packet for

[Sidenote: VALETTA.] At eight o'clock, we landed from our boat at the
harbour stairs, and entered Valetta. Rarely have I seen a city so
remarkable for its cleanliness: in that very essential quality, it may
be said to equal the most agreeable towns of Flanders and Holland. My
first visit was to the Neapolitan consul, when I found there was some
difficulty about the Turkish tobacco which I had in my possession. As
this knotty affair could not be arranged, it was decided we should
remain one day more; and I engaged myself to dine at the palace. As the
Malta gazette did us the honour to publish a detailed account of the
festivities of that day, let me transcribe it here.

"_Malta, 31st._--The passengers by the Neapolitan steamer, Francesco
Primo, were yesterday admitted to _pratique_.

"His Excellency the Governor entertained His R. H. the Prince of
Bavaria, the Prince of Butera, and the other noblemen and gentlemen,
passengers in the steamer, at a grand dinner at the palace.

[Sidenote: GARRISON OF MALTA.] "The whole of the garrison was afterwards
reviewed on the Florian parade; and, certainly, in no quarter of the
world could a finer body of troops be seen, than those composing the
garrison of Malta; consisting of a detachment of the Royal Artillery,
the Royal Fusileers, the Royal Highlanders, the 73d and 94th regiments,
and the Royal Malta Fencibles.

[Sidenote: LADY BRIGG'S BALL.] "In the evening, Lady Briggs gave a
magnificent ball, at which his R. H. the hereditary Prince of Bavaria,
Prince Butera of Sicily, and the other _distinguished_ personages who
came by the steamer, were present."

The writer of this "Court Journal" was right in saying that no finer
body of troops could be seen; and the foreigners present were
particularly struck with the Fusileers and the Highlanders; but the
whole garrison was greatly offended at the conduct of the Prince, who
never acknowledged the salute of the officers, nor the lowering of the
colours to the ground in passing his royal person. Every one besides
stood uncovered, and the populace cheered loudly; while he displayed a
sort of contemptuous indifference, and remained motionless as a statue.
The Admiral's ball was given as much in honour of Sir Thomas Briggs's
elevation to the Grand Cross of St. Michel as of the _illustrious_
persons of the steam-boat. It was crowded and splendid; but there was a
sad lack of beauty.

The Captain of the Speranaro having refused to take the tobacco, our
bargain became void, and the baggage was again shifted to the
steam-boat, which sailed about eight o'clock on a beautiful moonlight
night. We were kept waiting outside the harbour for nearly an hour for
Captain Hayland, one of the passengers, who, it seems, went to sleep,
and the people in his hotel forgot to wake him in due time. He was
greatly alarmed, all his baggage being on board; and for some time he
supposed we had really left him behind. The boat he hired was engaged to
take him to Syracuse, in case it did not overtake the steamer. The
commander of the Francesco, however, behaved very well on this occasion;
for, when some of the passengers remonstrated at the delay, he replied,
that the absent person was not only attentive and obliging to all on
board, but had been punctual hitherto; and, therefore, he would stretch
a point for him, though he would not do as much for many others who
sailed with him.

[Sidenote: SICILY--GIRGENTI.] _Thursday, August 1st._--We are off
Alicata, having landed Prince Butera, whose estates are situated near
the town. I was not sorry for the opportunity of seeing Girgenti thus
afforded me; and a day or two sooner or later in Naples made no
difference. Some extra charge was made for this addition to the eastern
voyage, merely sufficient to pay the expenses of the boat.

We coasted along this beautiful island, now almost a wilderness, and
nearly depopulated by a long series of oppressive edicts and taxes,
imposed by the government of a nation which has no sympathy with its
distresses. It may be truly called the Ireland of the great kingdom of
the two Sicilies; a wretched country, which can only be preserved from
destruction by a war to which Naples is a party. When that occurs,
Sicily may again raise its desponding head, and, by seeking the
protection of England, whose remembrance is indelibly stamped on the
hearts of its inhabitants, it would soon be regenerated, and, with a
liberal government and free trade, might once more become the rich and
happy Sicily, the garden of Europe.

[Sidenote: GIRGENTI.] We anchored off Girgenti: in the distance, against
the clear blue vault of heaven stood its ruined temples, the sad
enduring monuments of former greatness; which appeal to the miserable
and oppressed inhabitants, impressively reminding them of the glory of
their forefathers, and the power which has passed away from the land.

Half an hour after midnight, a party I had formed, started to view the
temples by that light,

  "Which mingles dark shadows into gentleness."

After rambling across the country, and losing ourselves among groves of
olive trees, we were obliged to take a guide at last. We were several
times stopped by the deep ravines which the torrents have cut in the
face of the country. There were an immense number of aloes in the
hedges, many in flower.

The night was as fine and clear as could be desired; and the moon shone
with an intensity of light. On arriving at the Temple of Hercules,
nothing met our eyes but one solitary column rising from a mass of
prostrate ruins, and over-topping the cluster of Indian fig-trees that
grew around it. Pointing towards the heavens, it seemed to
whisper,--"Mortals, there must you look for eternity: here all is
crumbling to decay!"

[Sidenote: REFLECTIONS.] We passed on through groves of the
above-mentioned trees, and alongside walls and turrets excavated from
the solid rock, until the whole of the Temple of Concord, and,
immediately afterwards, that of Juno, burst upon our sight. In this
still hour, as we stood upon their ruins, and extended our view over the
boundless prospect of sea and land,--the one calm and tranquil as a
sleeping child; the other, like an old but vigorous man, marked and
furrowed by the devastating hand of time,--how impressive was the scene!
Can I ever lose the recollection of that moment? No. Girgenti,--

  "My eye hath play'd the painter, and hath steeled
   Thy beauty's form in table of my heart!"

Often have I lingered within the Coliseum when its majestic ruins were
silvered o'er by the light of the same lovely orb, which now threw its
lustre on these prostrate relics of departed greatness: I have wandered
alone among the temples of Pæstum; I have stood on the Parthenon while
the sun threw his latest, brightest ray over that hallowed spot: but
never did I feel as among the ruins of Girgenti. On all these former
scenes, the combination of nature and art has fixed the impress of mere
beauty; here their union is sublime.

The Eastern sky is brightening with the beams of the morning sun, and
its reflection tints each mouldering column with a purple light. The
moon slowly resigns her influence over the scene, and a splendid
prospect of earth and sea bursts upon the eye, as the sun springs
upwards from behind the ruins, like the presiding deity of the spot.

[Sidenote: GALLEY SLAVES.] We next proceeded to the Temple of Giants;
and, judging from the fragments which lie scattered, over a vast area,
how colossal must have been the proportions of this once magnificent
edifice! The caryatide, or giant, which lies prostrate there, the last
of his race, is 27 feet long; and the remains of the columns, capitals,
ovaca, tryglyphi, &c., are all on the same enormous scale, and tend to
impress the gazer's mind with the idea that its erection was in reality
the work of supernatural agency.

The space between the temple and the town affords a beautiful prospect,
varied with undulating hills, green valleys, wooded slopes, and
sharp-pointed rocks, and interspersed with gardens in the richest

There is a great number of galley-slaves at Girgenti; and they must be a
happy race, if laughing and merriment be any criterion to judge by.

In the evening, Prince Butera having joined us from Alicata, we started
for Palermo. Poor Marquis St. Isodore has lost all his curiosities which
he landed here; his property being close to Girgenti. The servant who
was in charge of his baggage easily passed it through the custom-house
by means of a bribe; and, having loaded a cart, instead of going off at
once to the country, he placed it under a shed, and went to drink with
some of his companions. In the mean time, one of those on board, who had
an enmity against either the Marquis, or his man, laid an information,
that there were many contraband articles; and the officer went to the
shed and seized every thing.

[Sidenote: MARSALA.] _Saturday, 3d._--The sea has become very
boisterous, and most of the passengers are sick. We passed Marsala and
Mazzara, where an increasing people enjoy comparative abundance, and are
happy in consequence. All this benefit arises from the attention paid to
the cultivation of the grape for Marsala wine, set on foot by an
enterprising Englishman.

At two o'clock the steamer was off Trapani, and many of our passengers
landed to visit Selinuntum; more, I believe, with the desire of escaping
the horrors of sea-sickness, than for the purpose of searching after
ruined temples.

Our course now lay along the shore, which presented a succession of bold
mountainous scenery, interspersed with rich and smiling valleys. It was
evening when we approached Palermo, and the setting sun shed a flood of
golden light over each mountain summit, dark grey rock, and wooded glen:
it was a beautiful scene, and reminded me of one of those landscapes
which so often employed the immortal pencil of Claude Lorraine.

An unfortunate delay of half an hour in rounding Point Pellegrino,
prevented us from getting _pratique_ that night; and we had to endure
the mortification of hearing the hum of enjoyment arising from every
part of this gay city, without the possibility of being partakers in the
amusement going forward. The marina was well illuminated, and the
distant sound of music, which ever and anon came softened over the
waves, communicated an air of enchantment to the scene.

[Sidenote: PALERMO.] _Sunday, 4th._--We landed in Palermo at daylight;
and I established myself in the same hotel where, two years before, I
had spent a pleasant fortnight. Here it is that an Italian summer may be
truly enjoyed; for pleasure would seem to be the presiding deity of the
place. The inhabitants spend the whole night in driving about, eating
delicious ices, listening to music, or in wandering among the orange and
lemon groves situated in and about the town.

  "This is the land where the lemon trees bloom;
   Where the dark orange glows in the deep thicket's gloom,
   Where a wind ever soft from the kind Heaven blows,
   And the groves are of myrtle, and laurel, and rose."

[Sidenote: DUCHESS DE BERRI.] After visiting every object of curiosity
in Palermo, I surrendered myself to that pleasing indolence in which
every one appears more or less to indulge. Nevertheless, I could not
resist the temptation of making an excursion to Prince Butera's villa,
in order to catch a glimpse of her who had soared so high and sunk so
low.[22] She came to the window while we were in the garden; and a
Carlist, who formed one of our party, seemed to gaze at her as though
she had been a deity. A dispute having arisen about some trivial
circumstance, she stormed with rage, and her gesticulations were
perfectly furious. She is a perfect Neapolitan.

As this illustrious lady had expressed a desire to go to Naples, we were
requested to agree to a delay of a few days. Who could resist the
temptations of a longer sojourn in the city of the syren pleasure? and
it was readily agreed to. It was not, therefore, until the morning of--

[Sidenote: SCENE ON BOARD.] _Friday, 9th_--that we bade adieu to Sicily.
The Duchess came on board with her husband and suite, Count Menars, and
the Prince and Princess----. Her face is by no means a handsome one; and
she is very short, thin, and vulgar-looking. Nothing in her personal
appearance marks her out for a heroine, or is calculated to inspire her
followers with the awe and respect with which they seem to worship her.
She soon sat down to whist with her husband, Butera, and the old
Princess St. Theodore; but the game received many unpleasant
interruptions from the pitching and rolling of the boat. Each time the
fit came on, she sprang upon the bench on which she had been sitting,
and, after bending her head _sans cérémonie_ over the vessel's side,
quietly sat down again to resume her cards. This rather unroyal and
unlady-like exhibition occurred repeatedly; and we were impressed with
the idea that her manners altogether were very unfitting her rank and
station. As it was publicly known that we had the Duchess de Berri on
board, she attracted considerable attention; otherwise her carriage
would never have distinguished her from the most ordinary passenger. Our
Carlist friend appeared on the quarter deck, wearing the colours of his
party: at first, she took no notice of him; but at length it occurred to
her that he might be a spy in disguise, and she haughtily demanded who
he was. His loyalty and devotion were not proof against this affront: in
an instant he retreated below, and, having disencumbered himself of the
once-cherished badge, reappeared on deck with a countenance glowing
with indignation; and, if I am not much deceived, "Louis-Philip" gained
a convert from that moment.

We had a great increase of passengers, besides the Duchess and her
suite; most of whom, being unaccustomed to sailing, were quickly on
their _beam ends_. The weather, which, at starting, had threatened to be
stormy, now cleared up; and, though the evening was calm and beautiful,
a heavy swell still continued to render the motion of the vessel
disagreeable. The heroine of La Vendée is sleeping in her arm-chair: the
faithful Menars reposes at her feet; and her husband, whom she hardly
seems to notice, is sitting on a bench beside her.

[Sidenote: CAPRI.] _Saturday, 10th._--All hail to thee, Capri! Four
months have glided away on the stream of time since I last beheld the
sun casting thy shadow far over the surface of the azure waters, and
then leave thee in darkness. Now his morning beams paint with gold the
summits of thy lofty indented cliffs, that resemble the battlements of
some magnificent cathedral: they will soon envelope thee in brightness.
During the long interval between _that_ setting and _this_ rising, many
beautiful pictures, painted by Nature's hand, have been spread out
before me, but none more perfect than that which now unfolds itself,
as, passing thy rocky isle, I enter the bay, where--

  "Truth and Fable have shed, in rivalry,
   Each her peculiar influence."

[Sidenote: CONCLUSION.] Once more in port, my task is finished; and,
gentle reader, I must now e'en bid thee adieu!


_List of the Turkish Fleet in the Bosphorus._

                  Frigates           8

                  Line of Battle     5

                  Three Deckers      2

                  Corvettes          3

                  Sloops             5

                  Cutters            5

At Lamsacké.      Frigates           4

                  Sloops             2

                  Cutters            1

At St. Stefano.   Frigates           3
                            Total   38

_Mohammed Ali's Navy._[23]


1. Masr                            138

2. Acre                            138

3. Mahellet-el-Kebir               100

4. Mansourah                       100

5. Alexandria                       96

6. Aboukir                          90

7. Jaffaria                         62

8. Bahirah                          60

9. Rashid                           58

10. Kafr-el-Sheïkh                  58

11. Sheergehat                      54

12. Damietta                        50

13. Mufti Gehat                     22

14. Tantah                          24

15. Pelenga Gehat                   22

16. Psyche                          22

17. Fouah                           20

18. Genah Baharia                   20

19. Cervelli                        20

20. Satalia                         20

21. Washington                      18

22. Semuda Gehat                    18

23. Timsah                          13

_State of the Thermometer at Constantinople, from May 6.
to June 3. inclusive._

           LOWEST AT NIGHT.    A. M.

  May  6.         46°              8         56°
       7.         42              --         --
       8.         45              --         60
       9.         47              --         56
      10.         --              --         --
      11.         --              --         57
      12.         44              --         54
      13.         --              --         --
      14.         49              --         56
      15.         51              --         55
      16.         47               7         52
      17.         --              --         55
      18.         52               8         58
      22.         59              --         69
      23.         52              --         55
      24.         --              --         57
      25.         42              --         51
      26.         49              --         60
      27.         58              --         62
      28.         59              --         69
      29.         56              --         60
      30.         55              --         65
      31.         55              --         64
 June  1.         56              --         58
       2.         52              --         60
       3.         55              --         59

Here it ceased to be an object of remark.


This practice of insulting the religion of such as profess a faith
different from their own has ever been a characteristic of the Oriental
nations, and is illustrative of a passage in the New Testament, which I
have not seen explained by any of the commentators: I mean the
expression of our Saviour, where he denounces the votaries of avarice,
by declaring that "it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a
needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God."

For a long time previous to Christ's appearance, it had been usual for
the "Sons of Ishmael," or pagan Arabs of Asia Minor, to make hostile
incursions into the provincial towns of Judea, and riding their
dromedaries into the synagogues, to desecrate the altar in the manner
here ascribed to the Turks. In order to put a stop to these enormities,
the Jews hit upon the expedient of constructing the doors of their
churches so low, that an ordinary-sized man could only enter by
stooping; and thus they completely foiled their persecutors, for the
disinclination of the Arabs to dismount, even on the most pressing
occasions, is well known to such as have travelled among these sons of
the Desert. In the hyperbolical phraseology of the East, these
diminished apertures were compared to the eye of a needle; and the
impossibility of a camel making his way through them, became at length a
proverbial expression for any impracticable undertaking.



  [1] As we sailed through the strait formed by it and the
  mainland,--and a very beautiful scene it affords,--I was
  informed by those on board, that a shoal is marked down upon
  the ship's chart as being in the centre. Having never before
  heard the slightest allusion to this fact, I intend to
  ascertain its accuracy, by actual inspection, at some more
  favourable opportunity.

  [2] "The ridge of the Somma forms a semicircle, the curve of
  which lies north-east, its two extremities stretching out
  south-east. The front, which faces the south-west and the
  cone of Vesuvius, is almost perpendicular; but the side
  towards the north is a sloping plain, cut lengthwise by deep
  ravines, and covered with vineyards, except a few hundred
  feet near the summit, which are clothed with small chestnut
  and oak trees."--_Sketches of Vesuvius_, p. 2.

  [3] Wingless Victory.

  [4] "About 170 yards distant from the warm springs of the
  Scamander, towards the west, the cold sources are found,
  throwing out a considerable quantity of water from many
  openings in the rock. It has been discovered, by the help of
  a thermometer, which was thrust into a fissure as far as the
  arm would permit it to go, that this spring is equally warm
  with the former. The pool, however, which contains the water
  being of so considerable a size as to suffer it immediately
  to acquire the temperature of the atmosphere, it must
  undoubtedly have appeared cold before the invention of an
  instrument for ascertaining the real degree of heat. It
  would, therefore, have been thought cold in the days of
  Homer; and the poet is not incorrect who describes places
  and things as they appear to the generality of mankind.
  Several other sources contribute to swell this division of
  the stream of the Scamander before its junction with the
  rivulets which proceeds from the warm springs."--_Sir W.
  Gell's Topography of Troy_, p. 76.

  [5] "The women of Bounarbashi yet frequent the spring, as
  their predecessors, the Trojan virgins, did before the
  invasion by the Greeks. The convenience afforded by the
  blocks of marble and granite to the women of the country,
  who always beat their linen on stones or boards during the
  time they are washing, added to the sensible warmth of the
  water, has, in all probability, continued the practice of
  resorting to this spring in preference to any other. The
  Count de Choiseul Gouffier was informed by the Aga of
  Bounarbashi, that the water threw up a very perceptible
  steam in the winter; and later experiments, made with the
  thermometer, prove beyond doubt that this is a warm

[6] There, on the green and village cotted hill, is
    (Flank'd by the Hellespont, and by the sea,)
    Entombed the bravest of the brave--Achilles,--
    They say so--(Bryant says the contrary);
    And further downward, tall and towering still, is
    The tumulus--of whom? Heaven knows: 't may be
    Patroclus, Ajax, or Protesilaus,--
    All heroes, who, if living still, would slay us.

  [7] Celebrated in history as being the place where the
  crusaders, under Godfrey of Bulloigne, were encamped.

  [8] These pretty diminutive coins are called _dust_ by the
  common people; a name not at all inapplicable, as in size
  they resemble the following mark [Symbol: circle], and are
  thin as a gum wafer. A handful of them scarcely equals a
  shilling in value.

  [9] _Balouk_, a fish in Turkish.

  [10] Infidel.

  [11] All Saints.

  [12] Similar changes have been produced in other parts of
  the East. "An extraordinary revolution," says Mr. St. John,
  "has been effected since the year 1817, when the Christian,
  according to a former traveller, was turned away with insult
  from the Castle (the Pharos); for now a Christian, having
  examined at his leisure the military portion of the
  structure, entered into the mosque in his boots, under the
  guidance of a Turkish officer."--_Egypt and Mohammed Ali_,
  vol. ii. p. 386.

  [13] Cannon foundry: from _top_, the Turkish word for a
  cannon, and _hana_, a manufactory.

  [14] In Turkish, the Prophet is styled Peigshamber: the
  French, whose vanity induces them to alter and vilify every
  proper name not derived from their own language, persist in
  spelling it _Pegchamber_: this, however, seems so ludicrous,
  when we consider the exalted rank of the individual to whom
  it is applied, that the reader will exclaim involuntarily
  with Hamlet,--"To what vile uses may we not come, Horatio!"

  [15] Since the above was written, he has returned to London
  as ambassador from the Porte.

  [16] This mode of executing criminals seems peculiar to the
  East, and is partly explained by the word itself. The
  Turkish bowstring, which is amazingly strong, is formed of
  untwisted silk, generally white, bound together at intervals
  by threads of a different colour. At either end is a large
  loop attached to the centre portion of the cord, by a very
  curious and intricate knot: the executioners slip their
  hands through this, and having passed the string once round
  the victim's neck, who was placed on his knees, they drew it
  in opposite directions with all their force, and thus
  produced death by strangulation. Since the gradual decline
  of archery among the Turks, the bowstring has also been
  falling into disuse; for the original cause of its being
  adopted as an instrument of criminal punishment was the
  readiness with which it could be procured, when every man
  carried at his shoulder the weapon of which it formed a

  [17] _At_, a horse; and _Meidan_, a course.

  [18] I cannot bid adieu to Lord Ponsonby and his amiable
  family, without acknowledging how much the pleasure derived
  from my voyage and visit to Constantinople was enhanced by
  their unceasing kindness. Indeed, from the first moment I
  became acquainted with his Lordship in Naples, he has
  uniformly treated me with a degree of affability as
  flattering to me as it was kind in him; besides honouring
  me, up to the present moment, with a confidence which, in
  general, is the result only of long tried and intimate
  friendship. This is the more gratifying, because he has
  always been surrounded by young men in every respect as
  worthy of the same distinction as myself.

  [19] I ought to have mentioned before, that Terapia is a
  village some miles distant from Constantinople.

  [20] Foreign Quarterly Review.

  [21] Vignette in title-page.

  [22] Duchess of Berri.

  [23] St. John's Egypt.


  |    Spellings of the Turkish words      |
  |                                        |
  |                                        |
  | Altintash             Altıntaş         |
  |                                        |
  | Balouk                Balık            |
  |                                        |
  | Bounarbashi           Pınarbaşı        |
  |                                        |
  | Buyukdere             Büyükdere        |
  |                                        |
  | caique                kayık            |
  |                                        |
  | Kutahieh              Kütahya          |
  |                                        |
  | caimac                kaymak           |
  |                                        |
  | erraba                araba            |
  |                                        |
  | Dolma Batché          Dolmabahçe       |
  |                                        |
  | ferridgè              ferace           |
  |                                        |
  | gashmak               yaşmak           |
  |                                        |
  | hummum                hamam            |
  |                                        |
  | Jeddi Calé            Yedi Kule        |
  |                                        |
  | Keathane              Kağıthane        |
  |                                        |
  | mahalabé              mahallebi        |
  |                                        |
  | narghilé              nargile          |
  |                                        |
  | SOLIMANIE             SÜLEYMANİYE      |
  |                                        |
  | Seraskier             Serasker         |
  |                                        |
  | Sultanée              Sultani          |
  |                                        |
  | Tchernberlé Tash      Çemberli Taş     |
  |                                        |
  | Validè                Valide           |
  |                                        |

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