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did spread very much ; and so they were in David's time a very strong nation, wherefore he prayeth very earnestly · in his 83d Pfalm, that God would punish and Nay and disperse them, as enemies of his holy church. But that I may come to our former Intention again, here the Arabians again asked us very often, where their King was at that time, so that our mafter had business enough to answer them ; whereby you may
observe what great respect and love they have for their King. But that they might not altogether look upon us as outlandish men, nor presently discern us to be strangers, we did sometimes when there was occafion for it, change our turbants, and let one end thereof according to their fashion hang down, which they do to make themselves a shade against the heat, that is very cruel in these countries. But yet if any body, be he who he will, doth enquire after their King, and wants to come before him, to present hiin with a suit of cloaths, &c. or to desire a pass from him, or if one should go about to hire one of them, to fhew him the way to a certain place, or through their country which he may do for a very small price, he would foon find one or other that would be ready to do it ; but among the Turks there is no such obedience ; for if you should defire any thing of them to do in the name of their Sultan, they are not willing to do it, cxccpt it would redound to 'their great profit. Wherefore a Turm, guide to conduct you would cost you a great deal more than one of them. Besides, they also remember their master daily, and hardly speak of any thing but of him, his great riches, &c. but with such pride and greatness, chiefly when they speak of his powerfulness, and enlarging of his kingdom, as if fome share of these were belonging to them, and that they must be respected for it. In this navigation through the great defarts, we two did not spend much, because the towns were at so great a distance from one another that we could not reach then, to provide our felves daily neceflaries (as we do in our country on the Danube and Rhine) or lodgings. We were necessitated to be contented with some flight food or other, and make a shift with curds, cheese, fruits, honey, c. and to take
of these with some bread for a good entertainment. The honey in these parts is very good,
and of a whitish colour, whereof they take in their caravans and navigations great leathern bottles full along with them ; this they bring you in small cups, and put a little butter to it, and so you eat it with biskets. By this dish I often remembred $. John the Baptist, the fore-runner of our Lord, how he also did eat honey in the desarts, together with other food. Besides this when we had a mind to feast our felves, some ran, as foon as our master had landed at night, to fetch some wood, and others in the mean time made a hole in the ground on the shoar, in the nature of a furnace, to boil our meat. So every company dressed accordingly what they had a mind to, or what they had laid up in store; some boild rice, others ground corn c. And when they had a mind to eat new bread instead, or for want of biskets, they made a paste of Aower and water, and wrought it into broad cakes about the thickness of a finger, and put them in a hot place on the ground, heated on purpose by fire, and covered it with ashes and coals, and turned it several times until it was enough. These cakes were very favory and good to eat. Some of the Arabians have in their tents
stones or copperplates made on purpose to bake them. On the 4th day, being the last of September, about noon, we came to the end of the mountains, before which without, on this side, lieth a very strong citadel, on a high hill, built three square, by the inhabitants called Seleby, whereof two points go downwards towards the river, and the third upward a great way on the mountain, so that in it's situation it is very like unto Baden in Switzerland. Although it is demolished, yet it is still very strong in it's walls, that are to be seen at the top and on the sides, chiefly towards the hills, and the river fide, to hinder the passage both by water and land. There are also still standing some watch-houses without, as you come towards it near the mountains, which may hold three or four souldiers : yet it lieth ftill to this day in ruins, and so defolated, that nothing but birds and beast inhabit it ; whereof a great many appeared on the river fide, as Herns, Ducks, that were very large and of a delicate colour, and others among which were some of a white colour, called Pelicans by Arislotle, and Onocrotali by others, which are as big as Swans; the prophet Zephaniah maketh also
mention of them in his second chapter, when he prognofticated the punishment that was to come to the Ninevites, Asyrians and Moors; there also appeared some quite black with long necks; whereof I did see abundance in my travels into the Land of Promise, and especially near Acon among
the rocks and crags of the sea ; as far as I could discern them at a distance, they seemed to be a kind of
Sea-Eogle, that feed more upon fish than any thing elfe. Six miles lower, and at the other side of the Euphrates, lieth ftill another fortification, which is called Subiau Seleby, that is, lower Seleby, on a very high bank, ini seeing that we failed very near it, I could not well discover it. Of these two which way they were befieged and taken ; and also of the way of government, or ruling of the Kings of Arabia, &c. I thould have been very glad to have been a little better informed, but the language wherewith I was not well acquainted, did hinder me. And suppose I should have understood it very well
, or enough to have made an enquiry after those particulars, yet I could not have done it without great danger, to have been taken for a spy ; for they foon fufpect outlandish men on every little occafion, which those that trade in these parts have often experienced not without great loss and danger. Beyond the mountains in the low country we saw inore tilled grounds, and habitations of the Arabians than we had done before, wherefore our mafter landed sooner than he used to do, near a village, to take in provision for our farther journey, where the people brought fielh and Indian Melons to us to fell. Here it happened, that about midnight, one of the I urkish souldiers went out to ease himself on the river fide ; and when he was busy about it, a Moor came creeping along to him, and thrust him into the river before he was aware of it, and run away. The Turk finding himself in the Euphrates, fell a crying out for help ; I hearing him, standing centinel that night did not fail him, but made what haste I could, with my scymeter in my hand, followed his voice, and came to the place, although it was very dark, drew him out, and brought him into the ship, which was so kindly taken
* I guess them rather to have been Cormorants ; 80 Eagles baring long Necks.
by the rest of the Turks, that I got mightily into their favour, and received many kindnesses of them all the way until we came to Bagdet, the garrison which they went to reinforce.'
The first of Oetober when our Voyage went on again, there came early in the morning a post of fix Arabians on horseback to the river side, to inquire of us whither their King was gone, or where we thought they might find him; they had received letters for him from the Sultan, wherefore they must follow hin until they found him, The master of our ship told them, as he did to every body that ask'd him, that we had seen him in Mesopotamia, which province he callid Amanachar, that he was broken up with his Mon to go back into Arabia, where they would find him. After this relation they departed, and we went on our way, and soon faw below a town to our right at a distance, call’d Seccard, very well situated on an afcent, belonging to the King of Arabia, wherefore some of the Turks faid, that none but Haramiquiber, that is, great Thieves, lived in it, which they do out of spight to all them that are subject to any other master than their Sultan. This town we passed by, and went directly towards Deer another town, whence we were then three leagues distant, yet they do not account their distances by leagues, for they know little or nothing of it, but rather reckon by days journeys, for their towns are so situated at such a distance, have fometimes to go through divers wildernesses, several days, more or less, before they arrive there, Before we came thither, one of the ships in our company
did go too much towards one side, toward a branch of the river, that runs by the town, for it divideth itself into several branches, where it got into the mud and stuck. Our master seeing this, landed immediately, and did send his men to help them. So I got time to look about for the strange plants, and found there about the river
Tamarisk-trees, aiso a peculiar fort of Willow, which the inhabitants Itill call by it's ancient Arabian name Garb. These trees do not grow high, but spread very much ; the twigs thereof are stronger and not so tough, as to snake bands or withs as ours will; the bark is of
a pale yellow colour, and so are the leaves, which are long and about two fingers broad, and at the edges round about crenated, so that they are very much differing from the rest of this kind. I found them to be of a pretty drying and astringent quality. Of their flowers and fruit, whereof Avicenna maketh mention in his 1 26th and 686th chap. I can say nothing, because I saw none.
Hereabouts the Turk, that would not stay until we were cleared, but went away before us, suffer'd shipwreck, and so loft a great deal of his corn, that he intended to carry to Bagdat, callid Baldac, to sell it in the great scarcity, which was occasion’d for want of rain, for there fell none in the space of two years and an a half. And yet, as they say, if it raineth but twice or thrice a year, they have enough to fupply themselves. After our men had wrought longer than an hour together with theirs, until they had emptied the ships, they came to us again to go that night to Deer. But there being several rocks before it, which were very dangerous to pass, some of their pilots, that understood the depths, came out to meet, and did help us, so that we got safe there. The town of Deer, which is not very big, and belongs to the Sultan, is situated on this side of the river, on an ascent, and is pretty well built with houses, (whereon stood great numbers of people when we into it, to see us) but as for the walls and ditches, they are but very flight. At our first arrival, we thought we should soon get clear for the custom with the Armin, and ship off again, but he was not in town, so that we were forced to stay three days for his coming. In the mean time we got acquaintance with the inhabitants, which were handsome, lusty and well fet, and white, and more mannerly than the rest; they visited us frequently, and spoke kindly to us, so that we found a vast difference between those and the former. The Armin also, who was no less civil, we presented at his return, with a great dish fill’d up with Cibebs, and several forts of confectures, and laid round about with foap-balls, as is the fashion in these countries ; but to them that were with him and of his family, we gave some sheets of white paper, which they willingly received, and were so well pleased with it, that some of them (as