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THE TREE-FROG.

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ingly rich. It lies in schistous flakes; but when broken up and exposed to the sun and rain, it forms a rich mould, in which vegetation is so rapid that some kinds of trees propagated by seed are said to bear fruit within the year. Several of these were shown to us, and we were informed that almost any cutting will strike root immediately, while vines produce grapes the second year. The Spina Christi, so called because tradition says it lent its thorns to pierce the Saviour's brow, is here common; figs and pomegranates grow wild; olives are abundant; and at the season of vintage the vineyards are rich with purple pendants. As we rode along, our attention was often attracted by the treefrog croaking among the branches of its lofty habitation, by the eagles that soared above us, and by the myriads of beautiful green lizards that ran under our horses' feet.

Froin Koochakooee our route lay over a rocky tract, called by the ancients Kaorgà Tôn xaopáta, where a path was but indistinctly marked. Beyond the village of Keekeneez, we passed an isolated rock projecting into the sea, on which are ruins of an ancient fortress once held by the Genoese ; and four versts farther, we reentered the domain of count Woronzow in the valley of Aloupka, fully sensible of the benefits

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IMPROVED STATE OF CRIMEA.

resulting to the Crimea from the expenditure of his ample property and the exercise of his official influence.

After another short séjour in this beautiful spot a ride of fifteen versts brought us back to Yalta, the Acyuga of Ptolemy, by which we continued our course through romantic scenery, ascending and descending the hillocks formed by successive disruptions from the rocks that face the sea, till we reached Massandra, another estate of count Woronzow, which came into his possession in a singular manner.

It belonged to a lady who borrowed from her sister, the mother of the countess, a pearl neck. lace, to wear at court. The string broke, and the pearls were lost: as a compensation, she gave her sister this estate, then valued at three thousand pounds, but said to be now worth forty thousand, or more.

The whole country around, including Magaratsch and Nikita, is richly studded with vines and fruit-trees, where, ten years ago,

all was desolation ; for the personal exertions and influence of the count have converted the wil. derness into a terrestial paradise. Some idea may be formed of the extent of the change wrought on the southern coast of the peninsula from the existence of an imperial public garden

RETURN TO ODESSA.

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at Nikita, intended to encourage horticulture by the sale of plants at cost price. It is situate on the sea-shore, laid out with great taste, and well stored with all the trees and plants suited to the climate, comprehending the productions of nearly every zone. Within a narrow space are five hundred different species of the vine.

A few versts from Nikita is Aidaniel, where we slept on another estate belonging to the count. The view from the house is beautiful. In front, is the Euxine; behind, the majestic Ayila rises as a guard against its encroachment on the land; and, to the east, a bluff promontory, called the Bear's mountain, an object of singular grandeur, supposed to be the Kógaz áxpoy of Ptolemy, stretches into the sea.

After enjoying the scenery of this lovely spot, we returned to Yalta, where, bidding a reluctant farewell to the country with which we had so recently formed a new and most interesting acquaintance, we re-embarked for Odessa on the steamer which, to the great accommodation of travellers, plies regularly between that port and Crim Tartary.

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CHAPTER XII.

TURKEY IN EUROPE.

CONSTANTINOPLE.

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Embark at Odessa for Constantinople. — Russian pilgrims.

Isle of Serpents. - Markalia. - Varna. — Symplegades.-
Thracian Bosphorus.—Scenery. — First view of Constanti- .
nople. — Seraglio Point. --Ships.-Caiques.-Costumes.-
Disembarkation.-Anecdote.—Plague dreaded by Franks.
-Recklessness of Turks.—Towers of Galata and Seraskier.

- View from summit of latter.-Mosques.-Sea of Marmora.
-Mount Olympus.—Princes' islands.—Seraglio.—Scutari
and Kadikooee.-Sweet waters. - Khans.-Cemeteries.-
Galata. — Topkhanah. - Pera. - Golden Horn.-Sultan's
caique. — Mosque of Soliman. — Moslim worship. - St.
Sophia’s.—Jeni Jami.—Ayoob.—Mausoleums.- Compared
with those of Agra and Delhi.—Sarcophagus of Constan-
tine.—Origin of Turkish crescent.—Palace of Constantine.
- Atmeidan. - Belisarius.—Mosque of Achmet.—Egyp-
tian obelisk.—Ancient pillar from Rhodes.—Delphic brass
column.—Maiden's pillars.—Cisterns.—Been bir deerek.
Iplikjee boodrumee. - Yerek batan serai. - Aqueduct. -
Walls of Constantinople.-Seven Towers.—Golden gate.-
Bloody well.—Gates of city.—Tomb of Ali Pasha.—Breach
entered by Mohammed II.—Palace of Belisarius. - Fanar.
-Etmeidan.

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VOYAGE ON THE EUXINE.

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we

The voyage from Odessa to Constantinople in the steamer, which goes backwards and forwards once every three weeks, varies from fifty to sixty hours. The distance is three hundred and forty geographical miles. One of our party was a Russian who, with his wife, was on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. He had lately recovered from a severe illness and was devoting two thousand rubles, or £90, one fifth of his little all, to this pious act. The zeal of the disciples of the Greek and Romish churches, however mistaken, often shames a Protestant. Would that it were rightly directed !

The only land very close to which passed was the Isle of Serpents, once called Leuce, or the Island of Achilles, who had a temple there. Below this, on the Bulgarian coast, is Markalia, the site of the ancient Noli, supposed to be the place of Ovid's banishment: and still farther is Varna, a scene of bloody warfare in the late contest between Russia and Turkey.

It was midnight when the coasts of Europe and Asia, divided by the deep and narrow Bosphorus and tinged with the silvery rays of a brilliant moon, opened on our view. As we entered the bay which gradually contracts into the Thracian strait, the Symplegades, those

VOL. I.

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