صور الصفحة
PDF
[ocr errors]

assuranee thWge as a Turk: but our boatman was

sueeess of ourippeeimen, to say the least of him; me to take eai*we know, might have been exereispers, publie and^l0 Yankee triek of answering one diipatehes from "g another.

alarming: he J*uso whieh was interrupted by our ment's warning* something whieh, from the intonaeity; that tho'° 06 a question. This ealled for the been reportoirtn sentenee in our extensive voeabureaeh thy*0 n0^ understand you," in eonsequenee of rfie explained himself at length, mueh to our bowilderment, but the last word solved the mystery —" haeksehish!" A handful of paras, with whieh the eaptain had supplied us, was all-suffieient, and on turning round, we found that the eaique was elose to tho landing-plaee.

Five minutes after, we were pieking our way along tho narrow, dark, and extremely dirty streets of the quarter Galata, under the guidanee of a Greek dragoman, who had proffered his serviees on our quitting the eaique, Soon, we were snugly enseoneed in two very eomfortable ehairs of Parisian make, and were partaking of an admirable supper

at the table of Monsieur L n, whose residenee,

having been built expressly to suit his Freneh taste, was the fae-simile of a eivilized dwelling, and was reputed to be one of the most elegant in Pera. Wo forgot in a short time that we were "strangers in a strange land," and the family party—I might almost eall it so—did not break up until quite late.

I was awakened at suurise the next morning by the loud voiees of the muezzins, ealling the faithful to prayer, from the lofty minarets of the innumerable mosques in the eity. Although the tones were exeessively harsh and diseordant, there was still something more solemn in this manner of proelaiming to the sleepers their duty, than if a bell had been tolled from the airy galleries.

Having but three days to stay in Constantinople, in aeeordanee with our preeoneerted arrangements, we were obliged to bestir ourselves in order to get ready for our travels through Asia Minor. Monsieur L n was kind enough to offer his servioes

in assisting us, and also in showing us through the eity, in eonsequenee of whieh last promise we set out quite early in the morning under his direetion. It was Friday, the Mohammedan Sabhath, and it was therefore useless to pass through the hazuars, as the shops would all be elosed. Avoiding them, Monsieur L n led us to the hanks of the Golden

Horn, and, entering a highly ornamented and beautiful eaique, we shot aeross to Constantinople proper.

From the water, the viow of the eity was beautiful beyond deseription: the numerous brilliantlydeeorated domes, surrounded by the tall sky-reaehing minarets of red and white stone, with their transparent galleries of piereed marble, rose high above the eneompassing erowd of pieturesque wooden houses, and eneireling groves of plane-trees and eypresses. Everything seemed bright and elean; but

this proved, on landing, to be a false impression, the streets being extremely narrow, horrifieti$iotzsfy dirty, and the houses of most tarnished appearanee. Hailing an empty araha—all gilding and diseomfort —that was being led slowly along by its driver, we entered it and were jolted through the indeserihably rough streets in a vehiele without springs, pullrd by two oxen not remarkable for their size, eleanliness, or respeetable appearanee, although I suppose that they, as well as the araha, belonged to an aequaintanee of Monsieur L n's, as the slave seemed to

reeognize him.

The first plaee we alighted in was the Atmeidan (or Hippodrome), on one side of whieh stands the Mosque of tho Sultan Aehmet, a splendid ereetion, remarkable for being tho only saered edifiee in tho Mohammedan world that possesses six minarets ;— that at Meeea has now seven, although originally but four, the other three having been added in eonsequenee of the Sultan Aehmet having reeeived (or bought) permission to inerease—in that whieh be was having built—the usual number by two, it not being eonsidered proper that a subsidiary plaee of worship should have more than the great head. Boing "giaour*," we were not permitted to enter any of the mosques without a firman, whieh we had not, so we were obliged to eontent ourselves with a mere exterior viow, although on our return to Constantinople tho following year, we not only visited the "Sultan Aehmet," but also tho "Saneta Sophia" and the '* Solemanie."

In the Atmeidan there is an obelisk of Egyptian granite, brought from Rhodes by the Emperor Theodosins, who put it on a white marble pedestal eovered with hassi relievi of tho worst possible exeeution, depieting his majesty's vietories; the seulptor was undoubtedly a eonqueror also, as he has left undeniable evidenees of his having utterly vanquished tbe rulos of art . No matter, it's good enough for harhariant.

Not far from this relie stands the spiral eolumn of bronze, onee terminating in three serpents' heads, one of whieh is said to have been struek off at a single blow by the sword of the Sultan Aehmet. This pillar is also reported to have onee supported the tripod of the Delphie goddess, and—yot again —to be the identieal eolumn that was presented by the Greeks to the oraele of that town after the hattle of Plateae. I suppose that ono is at liberty to eredit as mueh and as many of the above traditions as ho pleases; but there is a fourth, in whieh the Turks plaee implieit and unquestioning belief: it is that when this pillar shall be removed from its present position, the Christians will regain the mastery of Constantinople; at whieh period a walled-up ehamber in the Mosque of Saneta Sophia is to open of its own aeeord, and a Greek hishop (who has been praying in it, with a missal upon whieh no Moslem eyo may rest, ever sinee the eommeneement of the Mohammedan supremaey), will eome out and

[merged small][ocr errors]

ehant the serviee at the high altar. This will undoubtedly happen, if he is in there—and he will have exeellent reason to give thanks after so long an imprisonment.

About a hundred yards from the bronze tripod is the unsightly eolumn of Constantino, nothing more than a rudely-eonstrueted pillar, ninety feet in height, of unhewn stones of all shapes and sizes. None of the metal whieh oneo eovered it now remains.

We next proeeeded to examine the exterior of the Mosque of Saneta Sophia, and having done so, left it, grumbling at the Moslem higotry that prevented us from entering its beauteous gates. In the afternoon, we visited the quarter of Fanar, the residenee of the prineipal Greek families in Stamboul, whe are ealled Fanariotes. I was told that they speak a language remarkable for its resemblanee to the tongue of Aneient Groeee; but I was unable to eneounter a single individual of the raee, as they held themselves mueh aloof from strangers.

Monsieur L n assisted us, on the following

day, in preparing for our journey through Asia Minor, and informed us that, as the Arehhishep of Broussa was then at Constantinople, we had merely to ask him for a letter to the Armenian eonvents on the Mounts of Bemdar, and we would be sure to have our request eomplied with. We aeeordingly waited on his heliness, and were reeeived with the utmost urhanity and politeness, being dismissed, after an heur's eonversation, with an assuranee that a letter Eheuld be sent us by the time of our intended departure.

On Sunday we visited the immense eemeteries in the neighborheod of Pera. The theusands of tombs with their turhaned pillars, overshadowed by the yew and eypress; the women in their blaek silk gowns and impenetrable veils, pouring lihations on some of the mausoleums, on the anniversary of thenbereavement; the fresh garlands of flowers laid on the marble slabs—all tended to give me a deeper reverenee for the Moslems in general than I had ever before experieneed. They at least do not forget their dead.

In the same evening (Sunday) we went to a musieal entertainment at Signor F i's, an Italian

gentleman residing in the neighborheod of Monsieur

L n's heuse. We retired soon, as we wished to

prepare for an early departure the next morning.

We were up before suurise on Monday, and, together with our regular travelling attendants, the three brothers Boyd, and five Armenian supernumeraries, were soon busily engaged in making our final dispositions for leaving the "City of the Sultan;" and these were not very extensive, eonsisting prineipally of the eramming of the greatest possible number of hahiliments into the most diminutive saddle-hags I ever met with, for we had no animals beside these whieh we rode, as we did not wish to ineumber ourselves with superfluous annoyanees. Monsieur L——n kindly undertook to forward the

i greater part of our haggage to Smyrna bv sea, and j thus relieved us of the trouble of earrying a largo quantity of unneeessary luggage through Asia Minor.

At six o'eloek we were all ready to start, when it } was suddenly remembered that the Arehhishep of Broussa had not sent us the letter he had promised. This was very dolightful, as witheut it we did not stand a pastieularly good ehanee of obtaining an entranee into the several monasteries we had deeided upon invading for the purpose of ransaeking their j libraries. What was to be done? Nothing, but to i send a message to his heliness, and so we deter1 mined-to employ Ned Grey as stirrer-up. To do this j it was neeessary to borrow a herse, as all of ours j were waiting fdr us at Seutari, on the other side of

the Bospherus. Monsieur L n had one of his

j saddled instantly; but as Grey was mounting, the

> letter eame in the eare of one of the arehhishep's

> heuseheld, with an apology for its not having been

> sooner seut . Of eourse, "it was of no eonsequonoe," i and, so saying, we plaeed the saddle-hags in a two

> wheeled vehiele (I don't know exaetly what to eall \ it, a wagon, a dray, or something else) drawn by an

> extremely attenuated donkey, that would have been 5 a prize to a student studying anatomy.

{ We permitted the eurious eonveyanee to preeede I us, attended by the Armenians, for the faet was wo

> were ashamed to be seen in its eompany even by the

> dirty, shabby Constantinopolitans, and so we fol\ lowed at a respeetful distanee, aeeompanied by our i late hest. Passing through the market-plaee of j "Tophanna," (whieh means nearly the same as

< "Arsenal,") we took a peep at the beautiful founj tain, and the exterior of the mosque of Sultan Selim, ! ono of the beauties of the Pera side of the Golden j Horn. By its side, toward the water, is the quay

< of Tophanna, whero the eannon are kept—ready for j serviee, too, as was proved ono night, some time ago, i the pier having been set on fire during an insurreeS tion of the Janissaries. The flames diseharged the ! ready-loaded eannon, sending the balls whiziing over

to Seutari, where the populaee were dreadfully alarmed, thinking that the Greeks had revolted, seized the arsenal, and were bomharding the eity. Sueh, hewever, was not the ease, as the reader knows, and the petty eause of all the fright was soon quelled.

Near the quay was the eaique we had engaged the day before; and, the saddle-hags being transferred to it, the indeserihable vehiele was hebbled away with by the anatomieal donkey, mueh to our satisfaetion, and we eatered the boat, being landed in a shert time at Seutari, after having had a glanee at that eurious island strueture ealled indiseriminately the Maiden's, or Loander's Tower; the Turkish name is Kiz Koulasi, of whieh the interpretation is the first of the above given appellations.s

s Tbe derivation of "Kiz Kouiasi" is evident, being

By the side of the landing-plaee at Seutari rises the mosque of Buyeek D'Jami; it has a gallery running all around its exterior walls, and has a remarkably small domo for so extensive a strueture: it also prides itself in possessing two singularly beautiful minarets, while the adjaeent fountain is a triumph of arabesque seulpture.

We found the horses at the appointed spot, and

were soon ready to start. Monsieur L n now

took leave of us and returned to Pera, while we set off on our expedition, taking the route to Ismid. The road was not very had, and by six in the evening we had reaehed the earavanserai* of Jub Gannoum, about twenty-seven miles from Soutari, where we spent the night in eompany with uneountable fleas, who, by our subsequent sensations, must have made a far better supper than we managed to proeure.

A slight detention on the route prevented us from reaehing Ismid until quite late on Tuesday evening. I imagined we did not lose mueh in not seeing the town, as it is very small and frightfully the eonverse of elean, if the khanf we put up at may be taken as a speeimen, or if my olfaetories did not play me a triek as we rode through the plaee.

Now I am sorry that I have no adventures to relate as having oeeurred to me on the road from Seutari to the Monastery of Abrodol (the first on our not very long list); but, as I have before said, I seldom or never have the good luek to meet with any, and at present I eannot remember a single one, among the legions that are generally supposed to have happened to previous travellers, that would serve to introduee here, or I might appropriate it, with some little alterations. Sueh being the ease, I will run through this part of our journey mueh quieker than our horses earried us, and merely mention our erossing the River Saeearia (or Aiala), on Thursday morning.

We arrived on its hanks late on Wednesday evening, and, with the sun of the following day, searehed for a fordable spot, whieh, after many failures, we found about a mile further south. The Armenians plunged boldly in and erossed with the

doubtless a eorrupt pronuneiation of "Kiss you, lassy a sentenee that Leander mny easily be supposed to have frequently addressed to the fair Ilero.

The origin of the name of the surrounding waters is equally clear: "Buss for us," whieh, in eourso of time, has eome to be mispronouneed " Bosphorus."

t Oaravan-terai means earnTan-honse, and is a large building, eapable of aeeommodating with ease two or three of the huge assemblies of merehants that are eontinually erossing the eountry. They are eonsequently plaeed on the great routes, at the distanee of a day's journey from eaeh other.

f A khan is a small tavern, to be found in every village, for the aeeommodation (?) of single travellers, or parties of ten or twelve merehants, where the "guest" has to be his own "ehief eook and boUlewxuhar" provided he ean find any elean water

; greatest ease; Harry Boyd followed, and my turn \ eame next.

I spurred up my horse, but he did not wish to sro in, having no faney for a eold hath so soon after breakfast. He kieked and plunged, unfortunately \ not into the water, and waltzed away as if a Ger. man born, but in he would not go: he was in a perfeet tantrum, and it was with the utmost diffieulty that I managed to quiet him suffieiently to S turn him round. At length I sueeeeded in doing j so, and haeked him gently into the river. As soon J as the water touehed his fetloeks, he must needs I take another pranee; but I rapidly eaused him to J head the stream. Then, with a vigorous pass at him with my spurs, and a eraek over his haek with S my portable fishing-rod—I had no whip—I forced j him to danee into the water, whieh he did not apI prove of at all, and, with as many turnings and \ twistings as possible, he eontrived to get to the middle of the Saeearia, where he stopped short. No

I thing would budge him, and to avoid the water I was serowed up nearly on top of the saddle, looking "for all the world" like an awkward eireus-rider. Seve

< ral pokes with the end of my fishing-rod had no j more effeet than a willow bough, and I was in an ? agreeable situation, internally wishing the horse and

the Saeearia at the North Pole. Thei(W**a»vGrey 1 on one hank laughing to kill himself, 'farM on the S other the five Armenians grinning like monkeys and j showing their superb set of teeth to the best advari* j tage. At length one of these took pity on nW,'*n\l, j re-entering the stream, whispered some ATrifenian j words in the horse's ear, who instantly beeame do! eile, and permitted me to direet him to the opposite i hank, Grey and the two Boyds following, j Now, I was no believer in eharms, but still I felt j eurious to know what the Armenian had said to the j horse; so, beekoning him aside, I inquired." He eould not tell, it was a seeret (between him and the j horse, doubtless); but a piaster brought it out . Taking me a little way from the rest of the party, and earefully looking round to see that none was within eaves-dropping distanee, he murmured in the lowest possible tone of voiee, and with an air of tho greatest seereey and seriousness, "I said, '0 horse! if thou wilt be ridden in peaee aeross these waters, Allah will roward thee, and I, O horse! will give thee, at our first halt, an extra meature of oateHI" Think, O gentle reader! how this unhappy individual was humbugged out of a piastre 1 Justiee, however, should be rendered to the Armenian, for be fulfilled his promise, that is, he took the money to purehase the grain.*

A little before noon we eheeked our horses at the foot of the preeipiee, on the summit of whieh was

* It may be as well to remark here that I afterwards diseovered the horse to have been subdued by the Armenian's eompressing the animal's nostrils in a peeuliar manner, whieh, however, is kept strietly seeret .

[merged small][ocr errors]

the Monastery of Abrodol, whose gray, time-worn walla looked like a eontinuation of the sheer eliff that rose before us to the height of over a hundred and fifty feet. Old wooden ladders formed the only apparent means of aeeess, if sueh, indeed, they eould be ealled, for they were evidently unable to bear the weight of a man, provided he eould find a foothold on the rough rounds, that were so elose to the faee of the aseent that they seemed to be pasted on it like engravings in a serap-book. It was indisputable that a horse eould not walk up them, and we began to doubt whether any of the monks had made use of them for a month of Sundays, or, in faet, if any of those highly respeetable reeluses were in the land of the living, for all our shouts and sereams and gunshots made no more impression on the ears of the fraternity than upon the eliff itself.

We began to think that we might as well dine, and then proeeed upon our journey, when a ehanee glanee upwards displayed to my viow an open shutter in a little tower that overhung a eorner of the monastie walls, out of whieh were stretehed the head, shoulders, and arms of an old blaek-eapped gentleman, who was gestieulating vehemently, and I presume shouting to us, as his mouth was opening and shutting with uupreeedented veloeity. We jumped up andeftoiiffished our letters of introduetion from the arehbishop of E rouse a and the Greek patriareh, whieh last had been proeured for us by a friend in Jerusalem.

TJjis eaused the instant disappearanee of the old humaQwindmill, who, however, returned to his post, after a fow moments' delay, in a very flourishing eondition, giving plaee to a long rope, one end of whieh was soon dangling in our faees. No sooner did this take plaee than the Armenians plunged at a strong net that was firmly attaehed to the rope, and, spreading it out, were about to roll me up in it, when suddenly it was twitehed out of their grasp and reaeh. This eurious manoeuvre made us raise our eyes to the window, where the animated windmill was turning round a pieee of paper. We understood this as a requisition fpr our letters, whieh we again produeed, and, the rope deseending, sent them up for inspeetion before the high tribunal, not without some misgivings in regard to the safety of sueh a eourse. But we were soon reassured by the net's eoming down onee more, without the doeuments, whieh wo aeeepted in the light of an invitation to aseend.

I lay down full length on the net, and was soon bundled up in it like David Copperfield in his aunt's shawls. Being tied up tight, with nothing free but my arms and head, the Armenians gave the signal, and the monks began slowly to draw me up, during whieh operation I inwardly vowed never to eateh fish again, as I partieipated in their feelings on leaving their native element. This was before I had got twenty-five feet above the ground; but, when about twiee that distanee, the sway of the rope began to be

very distinetly felt, making my sensations anything rather than agreeable, as it turned round and round. At length I felt so faint and siek that I eould seareely retain presenee of mind suffieient to keep myself elear of the eliff by the use of my invaluable fishingrod. I was nearly two-thirds of the way up when I beeame eonseious that, owing to these exertions, the fastenings of the net were giving way. I elung to the ropo instinetively; the vibrations eontinued, though I quiekly neared the monastery walls: I was, howevor, afraid to use my fishing-rod, and in a seeond I jarred heavily against the eliff, beeoming insensible.

When I reeovered my faeulties, I was lying on a floor of a small square room filled with monks; Harry Boyd was holding my head; Grey was by my side, while the affrighted faees of two of the Armenians eompleted the group. I soon found that I wns not dead, but in the turret, and in a fow moments several athletie monks had pulled up the other two Boyds, the rest of the Armenians remaining below to take eharge of the horses.

I was eonsiderably bruised by my eneounter with the eliff, and it was two or three days before I was able to leave the dormitory whieh the kind and attentive brotherhood had assigned for my use; but onee reeovered, I turned my thoughts toward thinning the library of the monastery by removing the most valuable manuseripts at the lowest possible, outlay. Suoh is the gratitude of human nature!

But it is time for me to break off, as I have more than related " How we spent three days in Constantinople, and how we left it."

STANZAS.

ST J. SCOTT WILSON, H. D.

When wearied in a faithless world,

Who would not wish to soar,
And seek, beyond the gems of night,

Some more eongenial shore?
What all U elumge, no lasting joys

Can erown the gayest hours; The dearest hopes despair alloys,

And fade the fairest flowers.

Where formal friendships fade so soon,

Thert lore is but a ray,
That ne'er dispels the elouds above,

Nor warms life's wintry day.
*Ms but a gleam, a dazcling gleam,

Athwart the path of life,
Whieh but Ulumes our sorrows here,

To leave a darker strife 1

But, toils no more—life's sorrows done—

The aehing heart at rest,
The sinless soul shall find a home

Afar amid the blest:
Then Hope no more, with siren toD^ue,

Shall -in; of ideal 1>liss;
For, there forgot, in that far land,

Will be the eares of this.

ELLEN MONTROSE.

BT MABlB JI

To properly eommenee our story, we must aeeom- < pan; the fair Ellon as she enters, unannouneed, her sister's elegant home, in one of the most beautiful j streets of our gay eity, where her weleome is pro- j elaimed in joyous tones by a group of many ehil- j dren, to whom Aunt Ellen's arrival is always a joy. After a time devoted to their amusement, the little' group is dispersed, eaeh member of it laden with a j portion of their aunt's attire, marshalled by Master j Charles, who, with her muff surmounting his brow, faneied himself a most perfeet grenadier; and, de- j termining to enjoy fully the pleasure of this faney, j resolutely eloses the door of the apartment they en- J tered, and plaeing himself as sentinel, announeed j his determination to make them all stay with him j and play soldier as long as ho pleases. Leaving J them to the enjoyment of their unwilling parade, we return to the ladies, Ellen and Heloise, the mother of these little ones, who gladly avail themselves of the opportunity for an uninterrupted eonversation.

"You would not have seen me to-day," said Ellen; "but I was depressed in spirits, and thought I would eome and have a romp with the ehildren and a talk with you. Were you ever dull or sad when you were engaged, sister?"

"It is so long sinee then that I searee reeolleet," replied Heloise, smiling. "But I believe, as the time fixed for my nuptials approaehed, I realized more fully the importanee of the responsihilities I was ineurring, and sometimes almost feared to fulfil my promises to Charles. It is but natural, Ellen; a young girl eannot enter upon duties of so serious a nature as those of married life, without many misgivings as to her own ahility for their fulfilment; nor would it be well otherwise. It is an important ehange, and should be thought of as sueh."

"It is, indeed, sister, a very important event, and I assure you I realize it as sueh. But eome, Heloise, honor bright," eontinued Ellen, glaneing slyly with her merry blaek eyes, " did you ever wish you had not engaged yourself?"

"Did I ever really wish sueh a thing, Ellen, do i you ask ?" inquired Heloise, in a tone of surprise, \ looking earnestly at her sister. "No, surely, I never did." j "There, sister, don't be alarmed, and return me I my question with your eyes," said Ellen, as she read aright the expression of her sister's faee; "and do not be shoeked at my question; I only asked to s tease you. I know your attaehment to Charles was < of too romantie and devoted a nature to admit the j possihility of sueh a supposition for an instant; and <

AN5ITTE.

that look of astonishment at my question would have answered me without a word, had I really doubted you. But what a beautiful bouquet you have here !" rising, and seeking, by her admiration of the flowers, not only to hide her eonfusion under the penetrating gaze of her sister, but also to ehange the eonversation.

"Yes, they are beautiful," answered Heloise, on whose faee was now settled an anxious, thoughtful look. "Charles oulled them before he loft this morning. If you will, you may have them."

"Thank you, sister, you are really kind; and, sinee you are so generous, I will gladly yield to my selfishness, and aeeept them." As she spoke, Ellen stood for some moments before the splendid mirror that filled the pier, and seemed to be oeeupied in arranging some of the flowers in her hair.

While she thus stood, Heloise regarded her attentively, and there was silenee for some moments, unbroken save by the voiee of Master Charles, as he marehed in the adjoining room, offieiating in the double eapaeity of leader and trumpeter; and then Heloise, addressing Ellen, was the first to speak—

"And so you wore dull to-day, and thought to amuso yourself by teazing your unoffending sister, my dear Ellen?"

"Out', ma ehert Ktur f and I have the satisfaetion of knowing that I eompletely effeeted my purpose," was the laughing reply of Ellen, who now sought earnestly to divert her sister's attention from the eause of her dulness.

. "Yes, my sister, you have sueeeeded, as I must own. I am annoyed; but," said Heloise, in a serious tone, "not so mueh by your question, as by the motive whieh I fear prompted it."

For a moment Ellen was silent; the eolor mounted to her eheeks and temples, as she saw that her sister's penetration hod rendered eandor on her part inevitable; thon, easting aside all reserve, she ingeniously asked—

"And what have you diseovered, dear Heloise, beyond my simple question?"

"That there is some feeling of uneasiness at your heart, at present, whieh prompted it, and whieh, if I may know, I would," replied Heloise.

"You are right, sister; I have had feelings and fears of late that havo given me diseomfort, and I am now glad to speak of them to you, as to no one else would I breathe them."

"Well, Ellen, as the eourse of true love never yet ran smooth, I shall expeet to hear of some very dreadful oeeurrenee," said Heloise, jestingly; yet a

« السابقةمتابعة »