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here are very
cargos of devotees hastening towards the Holy City. Several of the Greek vessels were under the Russian flag! The island pays at present a tribute of about £400 a year to the Basha of Rhodes.
The people seem to be an industrious, persevering race; the women and children were pretty well clad, and had a healthy appearance-another fact confirmatory of the opinion that islands are far more favourable to the promotion of health than contitents. The inhabitants are never attacked with the fever that yearly ravages the opposite shores; and though their communication with infected places is very extensive, plague has seldom appeared in the island. A British consular agent resides here, though but few English vessels ever touch the island.
We left Kastelorizo on the 6th; and being favoured with a fair wind, we made the eastern point of the island of Cyprus next day, and continued coasting along its undulating shores, under stunsails, till the evening. The weather had improved, and now all was sunshine. Some parts of the scenery
beautiful ; the ground is pleasingly diversified with hill and dale; and in other places the headlands present a white, chalky appearance, not unlike Dover Cliffs; from between which we obtained occasional glimpses of the distant Mount Olympus. We brought up” in an open roadstead off the town of Limasol, which is situated upon a low bank of sand, with a surfy beach before it. It has little calculated to interest the visitor, except the minarets of its mosques, that rise into lofty spires covered with tin, and which have a pleasing effect when burnished by the beams of the setting
A large plain stretches to the east of the town, and behind it is a range of barren hills, which are by no means picturesque. A quarantine of three days was imposed upon us here, on account of our having touched at Macri; and this rendered our situation very uncomfortable, as there was a heavy swell in the sea, caused by the gale that we encountered off Kalamaki, which had not yet quite subsided. The principal trade of this place is wine, of the fame of which we had heard much ; and to procure some of it was one of our reasons for visiting the island. The accounts generally given of this wine are either very much exaggerated, or those who have given these coloured statements must have acquired a vitiated taste that few Englishmen would desire to possess. Mix honey, vinegar, and tar with brandy and water, to the taste of a Cyprian, and you have this much esteemed beverage of
UNHEALTHINESS OF CYPRUS.
the Levant; and if you wish to prepare it for Greece, add a certain quantity of resin ; or for Spain or Portugal, put in the same quantity of anise-seed. Strength and sweetness are the qualities looked for; and the tarish flavour which it possessed, I found to arise from its being kept in large unglazed earthen jars, which, to prevent filtration, are coated on the outside with tar. There are two kinds of this wine, red and white. It is carried from the country into the port in skins, as at Madeira ; but of its mode of preparation the merchants engaged in the trade are totally ignorant, and they generally dispose of it as soon as possible.
We found Limasol to be but a poor place. Its streets are, however, broader than those of most oriental towns. An old castle at the entrance mounts a couple of long brass Venetian guns of the date of 1543. The population is mixed, and consists of Greeks and Mohammadans, who have all (particularly the women) a wan and sickly look, that at once discovers the influence of malaria. There is no place upon, or in the vicinity of, the coast of Asia Minor where fever is so prevalent as this. It continues the entire three months of summer, and we were told that those who may have suffered from it previously are still liable to its repeated attacks. With some it remains, though in a more modified form, during the whole year, so that the place can never be said to be entirely free from its influence; and when I visited the consul, both his wife and child were just recovering from a fit of ague. On my recommending to some of the inhabitants to seek a higher elevation during the time in which the fever is most prevalent, they smiled, shook their heads, and said that they were perfectly aware of the propriety of following my advice, but that they had been accustomed to it from their youth, and, as it seldom caused death, they were unwilling to lose the chance trade, of which they might be deprived by a summer's residence in the mountains. None, even of the better classes, remove from the place, preferring to suffer this intermittent from year to year, to a removal to a more healthful situation during its continuance. The men seemed a slothful race, and the women, as far as we could observe, bore no resemblance to their great progenitrix.
On the 9th we left Cyprus, and sailed for Syria.
Beyrout–Quarantine - Rise of the Sea --Silk manufactory- Proceed to Jaffa -- Lebanon--Storm
-Tyre-Appearance of the Place -- Inhabitants-Present condition of Tsour-Comparison of its Ancient Grandeur and Merchandise-Questions proposed for Inquiry — Position of the Peninsula—Water Tower--Whence its Supply-A Remarkable Rock—The AqueductMarsh uk ---Its Cistern and Water Works-A Threshing Instrument-- Discovery of Ancient Tombs—Their Position- Historic Sketch of the Several Cities of Tyre-Its Earliest Mention --Chronology of Sir I. Newton-Palæ Tyrus --Its Antiquity-Siege of Shalmanizer-Destruction by Nebuchadnezzar--Building of Inşular Tyre --Besieged by Alexander-Prophetic Fullment-Its History up to the Introduction of Christianity - From that to the Crusades--Probable Site of Palæ Tyre-Opinion of the Count de Bertou-Derivation of the word Tyre-Definition of Palæ-- Position of Ancient Cities-Sepulchres--Aqueducts— The Modern Town-Its Population-Remains of the Insular City--Rise of the Sea-Harbours-Submerged Ruins Discovery of the Dye-pots--Fountains of Solomon --Departure from Tyre--Caipha-Proceed to Jaffa.
March 10th.-We arrived at Beyrout, as we understood that vessels would not receive pratique at Jaffa, for which place we were bound. The authorities here finding that we had come from Cyprus, informed us that we could not land on any part of Syria without performing fourteen days' quarantine; but having the privileges usually granted to vessels of war, it was reduced to nine, including our passage, the day of arrival, and that on which the quarantine expired.
The establishment of quarantine laws and regulations is one of the recent reforms effected by the Basha of Egypt throughout his dominions, and has been already attended with the most salutary results. At Alexandria a board of health, chiefly composed of the Europeon consuls and medical men, has been some time in operation, and it regulates the amount of quarantine to be performed by vessels in all the other ports under the government of the Básha ; but at the same time I have reason to believe that it is often made an excuse for gratifying a political hatred, as the different governors at these ports will often inflict a longer quaran
tine on ships coming from any port belonging to the Sooltan, even if no disease existed in those places, than on the vessels of any other country. It is, however, on the whole a wise precaution, and the reason assigned in our case I considered a fair one :—that although there may not have been any disease at Cyprus, yet that vessels arriving there from Constantinople, which is seldom without plague, are not placed under sufficient quarantine. We were permitted to proceed toward Jaffa on our parole that we would not touch any of the natives till the expiration of our time—a treaty we were fully as willing to observe as the governor of Beyrout could possibly desire.
Beyrout is a lovely spot, and is now become a place of considerable importance, being the principal seaport of Syria. Our position afforded us a very splendid prospect of Mount Lebanon and the snow-clad heights of Ante-Lebanon, rearing their heads above it in majestic grandeur. The town is embosomed in gardens which were then bursting forth in all the bloom of early spring. Several old castles, remnants of the Crusaders, stand at the landing place; one of them, opposite the Lazaretto, is now completely washed by the sea, and though a dark and gloomy tower it has a pleasing effect. An examination of the ground around this building will show that it once stood upon the mainland; thus affording another proof of the rise of this part of the Mediterranean ; or, if the land has sunk (as some have asserted) it must have been very gradual indeed ; as had it been produced by an earthquake or a sudden submersion of the ground, some traces of its effects would be visible on the doors and windows of this edifice. The greater part of the landing-place is a pile of granite and marble columns, formed into wharfs; and which were probably the remains of the ancient Beritus. Behind these the town rises in terraces, through which peep vines and orange trees; and the surrounding plain is a continuous grove of olives and mulberies, studded with the villas of several of the wealthy residents.
Beyrout offers many inducements to the travelling invalid, or to families desiring to visit Syria ; and would, I doubt not, form a pleasant and healthy winter residence for such persons. Its climate is moderate and subject to less change than either Algiers or Alexandria ; and the vicinity of mountains affords the means of varying the temperature. There are many European residents here ; and there is constant and direct communication with
England by trading vessels and the government steam-boats, which arrive at Beyrout once a month. With Egypt there is daily communication ; Balbeck is but forty miles distant ; the interesting country of the Druses is just in its vicinity; and a visit to the cedars of Lebanon forms an entertaining excursion to the tourist ; and the cave of St. George a pleasant morning's walk.
The principal export of this place, is silk, and it is very considerable, but though acknowledged to be of a superior quality, none of it finds its way into the English market. The greater part is sent to Marseilles; and although this place is an entrepôt for a large quantity of our manufactures, principally hardware and printed cottons, into Syria, and by Damascus even to Persia, we receive no produce in return; and our vessels, three of which were here at the time of our visit, were going to Alexandria for cotton. All this arises from a trifling circumstance that a few pounds, and a little trouble on the part of our silk manufacturers, could remedy: the winders or reels on which the Syrian silk is wound are smaller than ours, and consequently the hanks do not answer our machinery. How simple the remedy for this !-by sending out machines suited to our factories.
A heavy swell rolls into this open roadstead, so we hove anchor on the evening of the 11th, intending to coast to Jaffa.
There is the appearance of a large population along the shores and hill sides about Beyrout ; and several picturesque villages, with their patches of cultivation, mosques, and marabuts, appear among the scattered groves. A light breeze off the land kept us on our course. Presently the moon rose in the most gorgeous splendour ; the night was exceedingly mild and calm ; and the stillness and strikingly grand scenery of all around was most imposing. The range of Lebanon which runs parallel with the coast for some distance, raised aloft its dark fantastic form, and threw the broken outline of its summits into strong relief, as the orb of night sailed slowly and majestically on her course ; now casting the lower hills into shadow, and now glistening on the pearly coronets of snow that cap the topmost peaks. Our vessel seemed to glide almost imperceptibly through the placid waters ; and as she rose and fell with the gentle undulations of the subsiding swell, and all was noiseless except the rustle of her cutwater, it required but few touches of the romantic to conjure up the idea