Mummies and Moslems - The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia (2024)

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"There is nothing that men so enjoy as digging up the bones of their ancestors. It is doubtful if even the Egyptian plunderers left long undisturbed the great tombs which contained so much treasure; and certainly the Persians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Saracens, left comparatively little for the scientific grave-robbers of our excellent age. They did, however, leave the tombs, the sarcophagi, most of the sculptures, and a fair share of the preserved dead. But time made a pretty clean sweep of the mummy and nearly all his personal and real property. The best sculptures of his tomb might legally be considered in the nature of improvements attaching themselves to the realty, but our scientists have hacked them off and carried them away as if they were personal estate. We call the Arabs thieves and ghouls who prowl in the the tombs in search of valuables. But motive is everything; digging up the dead and taking his property, tomb and all, in the name of learning and investigation is respectable and commendable. It comes to the same thing for the mummy, however, this being turned out of house and home in his old age. The deed has its comic aspect, and it seems to me that if a mummy has any humor left in his dried body, he must smile to see what a ludicrous failure were his costly efforts at concealment and repose. For there is a point where frustration of plans may be so sweeping as to be amusing; just as the mummy himself is so ghastly that his aspect is almost funny." --Mummies and Moslems (1875) by Charles Dudley Warner

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Mummies and Moslems (1875) is a book by Charles Dudley Warner.


  • 1 Full text
  • 2 PREFACE.
  • 40 Table of contents


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There is in the Accademia at Venice, a picture, painted by Paris Bordonerepresenting what was considered at the time a miracle. A poor fishermanof the Lido, hauling his net one morning, took a fish that had in his stomachthe gold ring with which the Doge had wed the Adriatic a few months beforeThe honest fellow carried the ring, thus miraculously rescued from the mawof the sea, to the Doge, and the council considered the event so remarkableand of such propitious augury that they ordered it to be commemorated oncanvas. The picture represents the Doge upon his chair of state, surroundedby that gorgeous company of fine gentlemen with whom Paul Veronese hasmade us familiar, and the poor fisherman is ascending the steps of the throneand presenting the ring.I have no doubt the event happened. For the like had occurred before. Itis related that Polycrates of Samos had so much good fortune that his friendAmasis, king of Egypt, sent him a message and warned him that such prosperity was perilous: " I would rather choose," he said , " that both I and thosefor whom I am solicitous, should be partly successful in our undertakings andpartly suffer reverses," and, accordingly, to avert divine jealousy, he advisedhim to cast away that which he valued most. Polycrates took his advice.The most precious thing he possessed was a seal, made of an emerald, set ingold, the cunning workmanship of a Samian named Theodorus. Havingmanned his fifty-oared galley, he put out a considerable distance from theisland, and taking off his seal, threw it into the sea. Six days thereafter afishermen having caught a very large and beautiful fish, presented it to Polycrates; and his servants upon opening the fish found the ring When helearned of this piece of good fortune . Amasis withdrew his friendship fromPolycrates, satisfied that a man so prosperous could not come to a good end.viii PREFACE.Weshall look in vain for any new thing. The traveler in the Orient,Isuppose, always hopes to find the precious ring or the seal, a long time lost:if he should chance upon it, its story would have been already narrated.Can one expect then to say anything new about Egypt? How manyvolumes, during two thousand years, have had this mysterious land for theirtheme! The Amasis of whom I have spoken, sent a corselet to Croesus, madeof linen, with many figures of animals inwrought, and adorned with gold andcotton-wool; each thread of this corselet was worthy of admiration for thoughit was fine, it contained three hundred and sixty threads, all distinct. Apiece of linen found at Memphis had in each inch of warp, five hundred andforty threads, or two hundred and seventy double threads. I suppose that ifthe lines written about Egypt were laid over the country, every part of itwould be covered by as many as three hundred and sixty-five lines to the inch.New facts about Egypt need not be expected . A resumé of all that hasbeen written, in one volume, is equally out of the question. Those who findhere too many details of the ancient land, must remember how many they havebeen spared; those who find too few, will perhaps thank me for sending themto the library.No one can be more sensible than I am of the shortcomings of this volume.One thing, however, I have earnestly endeavored to do:-to preserve theOriental atmosphere. What we see in Egypt is the result of social, moral,and religious conditions, totally foreign to our experience, and not to be estimated by it. I tried to look at Egypt in its own atmosphere and not throughours, hoping thereby to be able to represent it, not photographically, but insomething like its true colors and proper perspective. If I have succeeded inthe slightest degree, I shall be satisfied.VENICE, October, 1875.C. D. W.



THE Mediterranean still divides the East from the West.Ages of traffic and intercourse across its waters havenot changed this fact; neither the going of armies norof embassies, Northmen forays nor Saracenic maraudings,Christian crusades nor Turkish invasions, neither theborrowing from Egypt of its philosophy and science, nor thestealing of its precious monuments of antiquity, down to itsbones, not all the love- making, slave-trading, war- waging,not all the commerce of four thousand years, by oar and sailand steam, have sufficed to make the East like the West.Halfthe world was lost at Actium, they like to say, for thesake of a woman; but it was the half that I am convincedwe never shall gain-for though the Romans did win it theydid not keep it long, and they made no impression on it thatis not compared with its own individuality, as stucco to granite.And I suppose there is not now and never will be anotherwoman in the East handsome enough to risk a world for.There, across the most fascinating and fickle sea in theworld-a feminine sea, inconstant as lovely, all sunshine andtears in a moment, reflecting in its quick mirror in rapid succession the skies of grey and of blue, the weather of Europeand of Africa, a sea of romance and nausea-lies a world ineverything unlike our own, a world perfectly known yet!2 1718 A JOURNEY WITHOUT REASONS.never familiar and never otherwise than strange to theEuropean and American. I had supposed it otherwise; I hadbeen led to think that modern civilization had more or lesstransformed the East to its own likeness; that, for instance,the railway up the Nile had practically done for that historicstream . They say that if you run a red-hot nail through anorange, the fruit will keep its freshness and remain unchangeda long time. The thrusting of the iron into Egypt mayarrest decay, but it does not appear to change the country.There is still an Orient, and I believe there would be if itwere all canaled, and railwayed, and converted; for I havegreat faith in habits that have withstood the influence of sixor seven thousand years of changing dynasties and religions.Would you like to go a little way with me into this Orient?The old-fashioned travelers had a formal fashion of settingbefore the reader the reasons that induced them to take thejourney they described; and they not unfrequently made poorhealth an apology for their wanderings, judging that thatexcuse would be most readily accepted for their eccentricconduct. "Worn out in body and mind we set sail," etc.; andthe reader was invited to launch in a sort of funereal barkupon the Mediterranean and accompany an invalid in searchof his last resting-place.There was in fact no reason why we should go to Egypta remark that the reader will notice is made before he has achance to make it -and there is no reason why any oneindisposed to do so should accompany us. If informationis desired, there are whole libraries of excellent books aboutthe land of the Pharaohs, ancient and modern, historical,archæological, statistical, theoretical, geographical; if amusem*nt is wanted, there are also excellent books, facetiousand sentimental. I suppose that volumes enough have beenwritten about Egypt to cover every foot of its arable soil if theywere spread out, or to dam the Nile if they were dumped intoit, and to cause a drought in either case if they were not allinteresting and the reverse of dry. There is therefore no onusupon the traveler in the East to- day to write otherwise thanOFF FOR THE ORIENT. 19suits his humor; he may describe only what he chooses.With this distinct understanding I should like the reader to gowith me through a winter in the Orient. Let us say that wego to escape winter.It is the last of November, 1874-the beginning of whatproved to be the bitterest winter ever known in America andEurope, and I doubt not it was the first nip of the return ofthe rotary glacial period- that we go on board a little Italiansteamer in the harbor of Naples, reaching it in a row-boatand in a cold rain. The deck is wet and dismal; Vesuviusis invisible, and the whole sweep of the bay is hid by aslanting mist. Italy has been in a shiver for a month; snowon the Alban hills and in the Tusculan theatre; Rome wasas chilly as a stone tomb with the door left open. Naples islittle better; Boston, at any season, is better than Naples-now.We steam slowly down the harbor amid dripping ships, losingall sight of villages and the lovely coast; only Capri comesout comely in the haze, an island cut like an antique cameo.Long after dark we see the light on it and also that of thePunta della Campanella opposite, friendly beams followingus down the coast. We are off Pæstum, and I can feel thatit* noble temple is looming there in the darkness. Thisruin is in some sort a door into, an introduction to, the East.Pæstum has been a deadly marsh for eighteen hundredyears, and deserted for almost a thousand. Nettles and unsightly brambles have taken the place of the "roses of Pæstum " of which the Roman poets sang; but still as a poeticmemory, the cyclamen trails among the débris of the old city;and the other day I found violets waiting for a propitious season to bloom. The sea has retired away from the site of thetown and broadened the marsh in front of it. There are atPæstum three Greek temples, called, no one can tell why, theTemple of Neptune, the Basilica, and the Temple of Ceres;remains of the old town wall and some towers; a tumbledown house or two, and a wretched tavern. The whole coastis subject to tremors of the earth, and the few inhabitantshanging about there appear to have had all their bonesshaken out of them bythe fever and ague.20 A DESERTED DISTRICT.Wewent down one raw November morning from Naples,driving from a station on the Calabrian railway, called Battipoglia, about twelve miles over a black marshy plain, relievedonly by the bold mountains, on the right and left. This plain isgradually getting reclaimed and cultivated; there is raised onit inferior cotton and some of the vile tobacco which the government monopoly compels the free Italians to smoke, andlarge olive-orchards have been recently set out. The soil isrich and the country can probably be made habitable again.Now, the few houses are wretched and the few people squalid.Women were pounding stone on the road we traveled, evenyoung girls among them wielding the heavy hammers, andall of them very thinly clad, their one sleazy skirt giving littleprotection against the keen air. Of course the women werehard-featured and coarse- handed; and both they and the menhave the swarthy complexion that may betoken a more Eastern origin. We fancied that they had a brigandish look.Until recently this plain has been a favorite field for brigands,who spied the rich traveler from the height of St. Angelo andpounced upon him ifhe was unguarded. Now, soldiers arequartered along the road, patrol the country on horseback,and lounge about the ruins at Pæstum. Perhaps they retireto some height for the night, for the district is too unhealthyfor an Italian even, whose health may be of no consequence.They saythat ifeven an Englishman, who goes merely to shootwoodco*ck, sleeps there one night, in the right season, thatnight will be his last.Wesawthe ruins of Pæstum under a cold grey sky, whichharmonized with their isolation. We saw them best from theside of the sea, with the snow-sprinkled mountains rising behind for a background. There they stood out, impressive,majestic, time-defying. In all Europe there are no ruins better worthy the study ofthe admirer ofnoble architecture thanthese.The Temple of Neptune is older than the Parthenon, itsDoric sister, at Athens. It was probably built before the Persians of Xerxes occupied the Acropolis and saw from therethe flight of their ruined fleet out of the Strait of Salamis. ItAMONG THE RUINS OF PESTUM. 21was built when the Doric had attained the acme of its severemajesty, and it is to-day almost perfect on the exterior. Itsmaterial is a coarse travertine which time and the weatherhave honeycombed, showing the petrifications of plants andshells; but of its thirty-six massive exterior columns notone has fallen, though those on the north side are so worn byage that the once deep fluting is nearly obliterated. You maycare to know that these columns which are thirty feet highand seven and a half feet in diameter at the base, taper symmetrically to the capitals, which are the severest Doric.At first we thought the temple small, and did not evenrealize its two hundred feet of length, but the longer we lookedat it the larger it grew to the eye, until it seemed to expandinto gigantic size; and from whatever point it was viewed its.harmonious proportions were an increasing delight. Thebeauty is not in any ornament, for even the pediment is andalways was vacant, but in its admirable lines.The two other temples are fine specimens of Greek architecture, also Doric, pure and without fault, with only a littletendency to depart from severe simplicity in the curve of thecapitals, and yet they did not interest us. They are of a period only a little later than the Temple of Neptune, and thatmodel was before their builders, yet they missed the extraordinary, many say almost spiritual beauty of that edifice. Wesought the reason, and found it in the fact that there are absolutely no straight lines in the Temple of Neptune. The siderows of columns curve a little out; the end rows curve a little in; at the ends the base line ofthe columns curves a triflefrom the sides to the center, and the line of the architravedoes the same. This may bewilder the eye and mislead thejudgment as to size and distance, but the effect is more agreeable than almost any other I know in architecture. It is notrepeated in the other temples, the builders of which do notseem to have known its secret. Had the Greek colony lostthe art of this perfect harmony, in the little time that probably intervened between the erection of these edifices? It wasstill kept at Athens, as the Temple of Theseus and the Parthenon testify.22 REPUTED ENTRANCE TO PURGATORY.Looking from the interior of the temple out at either end,the entrance seems to be wider at the top than at the bottom ,an Egyptian effect produced by the setting of the inward andouter columns. This appeared to us like a door throughwhich we looked into Egypt, that mother of all arts and ofmost ofthe devices of this now confused world. We were onour wayto see the first columns, prototypes of the Doric order,chiselled by man.The custodian-there is one, now that twenty centuries ofwar and rapine and storms have wreaked themselves upon thistemple-would not permit us to take our luncheon into itsguarded precincts; on a fragment of the old steps, amid thewinds, we drank our red Capri wine; not the usual compoundmanufactured at Naples, but the last bottle of pure Capri to befound on the island, so help the soul of the landlady at thehotel there; ate one of those imperfectly nourished Italianchickens orphan birds, owning the pitiful legs with which thetable d'hôte frequenters in Italy are so familiar, and blessed thegovernment for the care, tardy as it is, of its grandest monumentof antiquity.When I looked out of the port-hole ofthe steamer early in themorning, we were near the volcanic Lipari islands and islets, agroup of seventeen altogether; which serve as chimneys andsafety-valves to this part of the world. One of the small ones isof recent creation, at least it was heaved up about two thousandyears ago, and I fancy that a new one may pop up here anytime. From the time of the Trojan war all sorts of races andadventurers have fought for the possession of these covetedislands, and the impartial earthquake has shaken them all off inturn . But for the mist, we should have clearly seen Stromboli,the ever-active volcano, but now we can only say we saw it.We are near it, however, and catch its outline, and listen for thegroan of lost souls which the credulous crusaders used to hearissuing from its depths. It was at that time the entrance of purgatory; we read in the guide-book that the crusaders imploredthe monks of Cluny to intercede for the deliverance of thoseconfined there, and that therefore Odilo of Cluny instituted theobservance of All Souls' Day.ENTERPRISING NATIVES. 23The climate of Europe still attends us, and our first view ofSicily is through the rain. Clouds hide the coast and obscurethe base of Ætna (which is oddly celebrated in America as anassurance against loss by fire); but its wide fields of snow,banked up high above the clouds, gleam as molten silvertreasure laid up in heaven-and give us the light of the rosymorning.Rounding the point of Faro, the locale of Charybdis andScylla, we come into the harbor of Messina and take shelterbehind the long, curved horn of its mole. Whoever shunned thebeautiful Scylla was liable to be sucked into the strong tideCharybdis; but the rock has lost its terror for moderns, and thecurrent is no longer dangerous. We get our last dash of rain inthis strait, and there is sunny weather and blue sky at the south.The situation of Messina is picturesque; the shores both of Calabria and Sicily are mountainous, precipitous and very rocky; thereseems to be no place for vegetation except by terracing. Thetown is backed by lofty circling mountains, which form a darksetting for its white houses and the string of outlying villages.Mediæval forts cling to the slopes above it.No sooner is the anchor down than a fleet of boats surroundsthe steamer, and a crowd of noisy men and boys swarms onboard, to sell us muscles, oranges, and all sorts of merchandise,from a hair-brush to an under-wrapper. The Sunday is hopelessly broken into fragments in a minute. These lively tradersuse the English language and its pronouns with great freedom .The boot-black smilingly asks: " You black my boot? "The vender of under-garments says: "I gif you four francfor dis one. I gif you for dese two a seven franc. No? Whatyou gif? "A bright orange-boy, we ask, "How much a dozen? ""Half franc. ""Too much. "" How much you give? Tastorange; you no like, you no, he sweet no more."him; he ver good; a sweetYes, sir. Tak one. This aAnd they were sweet no more. They must have been lemonsin oranges' clothing. The flattering tongue of that boy and our24 SUNSET ON THE SEA.greed of tropical color made us owners of a lot of them, most ofwhich went overboard before we reached Alexandria, and wouldmake fair lemonade of the streak of water we passed through.At noon we sail away into the warm south. We have beforeus the beautiful range of Aspromonte, and the village of Reggionear which in 1862 Garibaldi received one of his wounds. asort of inconvenenient love-pat of fame. The coast is ruggedand steep. High up is an isolated Gothic rock, pinnacled andjagged. Close by the shore we can trace the railway trackwhich winds round the point of Italy, and some of the passengerslook at it longingly; for though there is clear sky overhead, thesea has on an ungenerous swell; and what is blue sky to astomach that knows its own bitterness and feels the worldsinking away from under it?We are long in sight of Italy, but Sicily still sulks in theclouds and Mount Etna will not show itself. The night isbright and the weather has become milder; it is the prelude toa day calm and uninteresting. Nature rallies at night, however,and gives us a sunset in a pale gold sky with cloud- islands onthe horizon and palm- groves on them. The stars come out inextraordinary profusion and a soft brilliancy unknown in NewEngland, and the sky is of a tender blue-something delicateand not to be enlarged upon. A sunset is something that noone will accept second- hand.On the morning of December 1st. , we are off Crete; Greece wehave left to the north, and are going at ten knots an hourtowards great hulking Africa. We sail close to the island andsee its long, high barren coast till late in the afternoon. Thereis no road visible on this side, nor any sign of human habitation,except a couple of shanties perched high up among the rocks.From this point of view, Crete is a mass of naked rock lifted outofthe waves. Mount Ida crowns it, snow-capped and gigantic .Just below Crete spring up in our geography the little islands ofGozo and Antigozo, merely vast rocks, with scant patches oflow vegetation on the cliffs, a sort of vegetable blush, a fewstunted trees on the top of the first, and an appearance of grasswhich has a reddish color.OUR PASSENGERS. 25The weather is more and more delightful, a balmy atmosphere brooding on a smooth sea. The chill which we carried inour bones from New York to Naples finally melts away. Lifeceases to be a mere struggle, and becomes a mild enjoyment.The blue tint of the sky is beyond all previous comparisondelicate, like the shade of a silk, fading at the horizon into anexquisite grey or nearly white. We are on deck all day and tilllate at night, for once enjoying, by the help of an awning, realwinter weather with the thermometer at seventy-two degrees.Our passengers are not many, but selected. There are a German baron and his sparkling wife, delightful people, who handlethe English language as delicately as if it were glass, and makeof it the most naïve and interesting form of speech. They aregoing to Cairo for the winter, and the young baroness has thelonging and curiosity regarding the land of the sun, which ispeculiar to the poetical Germans; she has never seen a blackman nor a palm-tree . In charge of the captain, there is anItalian woman, whose husband lives in Alexandria, who monopolizesthe whole of the ladies' cabin, by a league with the slatternlystewardess, and behaves in a manner to make a state of warand wrath between her and the rest of the passengers. There isnothing bitterer than the hatred of people for each other onshipboard. When I afterwards saw this woman in the streets ofAlexandria I had scarcely any wish to shorten her stay uponthis earth. There are also two tough-fibered and strong-braineddissenting ministers from Australia, who have come round by theSandwich Islands and the United States, and are booked forPalestine, the Suez Canal and the Red Sea. Speaking of Aden,which has the reputation of being as hot as Constantinople iswicked, one of them tells the story of an American (the Englishhave a habit of fastening all their dubious anecdotes upon “ anAmerican ") who said that if he owned two places, one in Adenand the other in H , he would sell the one in Aden. Theseministers are distinguised lecturers at home-a solemn thought,that even the most distant land is subjected to the blessing ofthe popular lecture.Our own country is well represented, as it usually is abroad,26 AN EVANgelical dentist.whether by appointment or self-selection. It is said that theoddest people in the world go up the Nile and make the pilgrimage of Palestine. I have even heard that one must be a littlecracked who will give a whole winter to high Egypt; but this isdoubtless said by those who cannot afford to go. Notwithstanding the peculiarities of so many of those one meets driftingaround the East ( as eccentric as the English who frequent Italianpensions) it must be admitted that a great many estimable andapparently sane people go up the Nile-and that such areeven found among Cook's " personally conducted ."There is on board an American, or a sort of Irish- Americanmore or less naturalized, from Nebraska, a raw-boned, hardfeatured farmer, abroad for a two-years' tour; a man who has noguide-book or literature, except the Bible which he diligentlyreads. He has spent twenty or thirty years in acquiring andsubduing land in the new country, and without any time or tastefor reading, there has come with his possessions a desire to seethat old world about which he cared nothing before he breathedthe vitalizing air of the West. That he knew absolutely nothingof Europe, Asia, or Africa, except the little patch called Palestine, and found a day in Rome too much for a place so rundown, was actually none of our business. He was a good patriotic American, and the only wonder was that with his qualification he had not been made consul somewhere.But a more interesting person , in his way, was a slender, noblooded, youngish, married man, of the vegetarian and vegetableschool, also alone, and bound for the Holy Land, who was sick ofthe sea and otherwise. He also was without books of travel, andknew nothing of what he was going to see or how to see it. Ofwhat Egypt was he had the dimmest notion, and why we or he oranyone else should go there. What do you go up the Nile for?we asked. The reply was that the Spirit had called him to go.through Egypt to Palestine. He had been a dentist, but nowhe called himself an evangelist. I made the mistake ofsupposingthat he was one of those persons who have a call to go about andconvince people that religion is one part milk (skimmed) andthree parts water- harmless, however, unless you see too much.AN IMPENDING CHANGE. 27of them. Twice is too much. But I gauged him inadequately.Heis one of those few who comprehend the future, and, guidedwholly by the Spirit and not by any scripture or tradition, hismission is to prepare the world for its impending change. Heis en rapport with the vast uneasiness, which I do not know howto name, that pervades all lands. He had felt our war inadvance. He now feels a great change in the air; he is illuminated by an inner light that makes him clairvoyant. Americais riper than it knows for this change. I tried to have himdefinitely define it , so that I could write home to my friends andthe newspapers and the insurance companies; but I could onlyget a vague notion that there was about to be an end of armiesand navies and police, of all forms of religion, of government, ofproperty, and that universal brotherhood is to set in.The evangelist had come aboard on an important and rathersecret mission; to observe the progress of things in Europe; andto publish his observations in a book. Spiritualized as he was,he had no need of any language except the American; he feltthe political and religious atmosphere of all the cities he visitedwithout speaking to any one. When he entered a picture gallery, although he knew nothing of pictures, he saw more thanany one else. I suppose he saw more than Mr. Ruskin sees.He told me, among other valuable information, that he foundEurope not so well prepared for the great movement as America,but that I would be surprised at the number who were in sympathy with it, especially those in high places in society and ingovernment. The Roman Catholic Church was going to pieces;not that he cared any more for this than for the Presbyterianhe, personally, took what was good in any church, but he hadgot beyond them all; he was now only working for the establishment of the truth, and it was because he had more of thetruth than others that he could see further.He expected that America would be surprised when he published his observations. " I can give you a little idea," he said,"of howthings are working. " This talk was late at night, andby the dim cabin lamp. "When I was in Rome, I went to seethe head-man of the Pope. I talked with him over an hour, andI found that he knew all about it! "28 THE VANQUISHED DIGNITARY."Good gracious! You don't say so! ""Yes, sir. And he is in full sympathy. But he dare not sayanything. He knows that his church is on its last legs. I toldhim that I did not care to see the Pope, but if he wanted tomeet me, and discuss the infallibility question, I was ready forhim."" What did the Pope's head-man say to that? ""He said that he would see the Pope, and see if he couldarrange an interview; and would let me know. I waited a weekin Rome, but no notice came. I tell you the Pope don't darediscuss it. "" Then he didn't see you? ""No, sir. But I wrote him a letter from Naples."" Perhaps he won't answer it.""Well, if he doesn't, that is a confession that he can't. Heleaves the field . That will satisfy me. "I said I thought he would be satisfied .The Mediterranean enlarges on acquaintance. On the fourthday we are still without sight of Africa, though the industriousscrew brings us nearer every moment. We talk of Carthage, andthink we can see the color of the Libyan sand in the yellowclouds at night. It is two o'clock on the morning of Decemberthe third, when we make the Pharos of Alexandria, and wait fora pilot.風花油煙



EAGERNESS to see Africa brings us on deck at dawn.The low coast is not yet visible. Africa, as we hadbeen taught, lies in heathen darkness. It is the policy ofthe Egyptian government to make the harbor difficult of accessto hostile men-of-war, and we, who are peacefully inclined,cannot come in till daylight, nor then without a pilot.The day breaks beautifully, and the Pharos is set like a starin the bright streak of the East. Before we can distinguishland, we see the so-called Pompey's Pillar and the light-house,the palms, the minarets, and the outline of the domes paintedon the straw-color of the sky-a dream-like picture. The curtain draws up with Eastern leisure-the sun appears to rise moredeliberately in the Orient than elsewhere; the sky grows morebrilliant, there are long lines of clouds, golden and crimson, andwe seem to be looking miles and miles into an enchantedcountry. Then ships and boats, a vast number of them, becomevisible in the harbor, and as the light grows stronger, the cityand land lose something of their beauty, but the sky grows moresoftly fiery till the sun breaks through. The city lies low alongthe flat coast, and seems at first like a brownish white streak,with fine lines of masts, palm- trees, and minarets above it.The excitement of the arrival in Alexandria and the noveltyof everything connected with the landing can never be repeated.In one moment the Orient flashes upon the bewildered traveler;and though he may travel far and see stranger sights, and penetrate the hollow shell of Eastern mystery, he never will see again2930 A NEW once such a complete contrast to all his previous experience.One strange, unfamiliar form takes the place of another sorapidly that there is no time to fix an impression, and everythingis so bizarre that the new-comer has no points of comparison .He is launched into a new world, and has no time to adjust thefocus of his observation. For myself, I wished the Orient wouldstand off a little and stand still so that I could try to comprehendit. But it would not; a revolving kaleidoscope never presentedmore bewildering figures and colors to a child, than the port ofAlexandria to us.Our first sight of strange dress is that of the pilot and the crewwho bring him off-they are Nubians, he is a swarthy Egyptian."How black they are, " says the Baroness; " I don't like it. "As the pilot steps on deck, in his white turban, loose robe ofcotton, and red slippers, he brings the East with him; we passinto the influence of the Moslem spirit. Coming into the harborwe have pointed out to us the batteries, the palace and haremof the Pasha (more curiosity is felt about a harem than aboutany other building, except perhaps a lunatic asylum) , and thenew villas along the curve of the shore. It is difficult to see anyingress, on account of the crowd of shipping.The anchor is not down before we are surrounded by rowboats, six or eight deep on both sides, with a mob of boatmenand guides, all standing up and shouting at us in all the brokenlanguages of three continents. They are soon up the sides andon deck, black, brown, yellow, in turbans, in tarbooshes, in robesof white, blue, brown, in brilliant waist-shawls, slippered, andbare- legged, bare-footed, half-naked, with little on except a pairof cotton drawers and a red fez, eager, big- eyed, pushing, yelping, gesticulating, seizing hold of passengers and baggage, andfighting for the possession of the traveler's goods which seem tohim about to be shared among a lot of pirates. I saw a dazedtraveler start to land, with some of his traveling-bags in oneboat, his trunk in a second, and himself in yet a third, and acommissionaire at each arm attempting to drag him into twoothers. He evidently couldn't make up his mind, which totake.FIRST VIEW OF THE ORIENT. 31We have decided upon our hotel, and ask for the commissionaire of it. He appears. In fact there are twenty or thirty ofhim. The first one is a tall, persuasive, nearly naked Ethiop,who declares that he is the only Simon Pure, and grasps our handbags. Instantly, a fluent, business-like Alexandrian pusheshim aside-"I am the commissionaire" -and is about to takepossession of us. But a dozen others are of like mind, andBabel begins. We rescue our property, and for ten minutes alively and most amusing altercation goes on as to who is therepresentative of the hotel. They all look like pirates from theBarbary coast, instead of guardians of peaceful travelers. Quartering an orange, I stand in the center of an interesting group,engaged in the most lively discussion, pushing, howling andfiery gesticulation. The dispute is finally between two:66 I Hotel Europe! ""I Hotel Europe; he no hotel, "66 He my brother, all same me. "" He! I never see he before, " with a shrug of the utmostcontempt.As soon as we select one of them, the tumult subsides, theenemies become friends and cordially join in loading our luggage. In the first five minutes of his stay in Egypt the travelerlearns that he is to trust and be served by people who haven'tthe least idea that lying is not a perfectly legitimate means ofattaining any desirable end. And he begins to lose any prejudice he may have in favor of a white complexion and of clothes.In a decent climate he sees how little clothing is needed forcomfort, and how much artificial nations are accustomed to puton from false modesty.We begin to thread our way through a maze of shipping, andhundreds of small boats and barges; the scene is gay and excitingbeyond expression. The first sight of the colored, pictured,lounging, waiting Orient is enough to drive an impressionableperson wild; so much that is novel and picturesque is crowdedinto a few minutes; so many colors and flying robes, such adisplay of bare legs and swarthy figures. We meet flat boatscoming down the harbor loaded with laborers, dark, immobile32 MIXED NATIONALITIES.groups in turbans and gowns, squatting on deck in the attitudewhich is the most characteristic of the East; no one stands orsits-everybody squats or reposes cross-legged . Soldiers are onthe move; smart Turkish officers dart by in light boats with half adozen rowers, the crew of an English man- of-war pull past; inall directions the swift boats fly, and with their freight of color,it is like the thrusting of quick shuttles, in the weaving of abrilliant carpet, before our eyes.We step on shore at the Custom- House. I have heard travelers complain of the delay in getting through it. I feel thatI want to go slowly, that I would like to be all day in gettingthrough that I am hurried along like a person who is dragged hastily through a gallery, past striking pictures of whichhe gets only glimpses. What a group this is on shore; importunate guides, porters, coolies. They seize hold of us,We want to stay and look at them. Did ever any civilizedmen dress so gaily, so little, or so much in the wrong place?If that fellow would untwist the folds of his gigantic turbanhe would have cloth enough to clothe himself perfectly.Look! that's an East Indian, that's a Greek, that's a Turkthat's a Syrian-Jew? No, he's Egyptian, the crook-nose isnot uncommon to Egyptians, that tall round hat is Persian,that one is from Abys- there they go, we havn't half seenthem! We leave our passports at the entrance, and are whisked through into the baggage-room, where our guide pays anoble official three francs for the pleasure of his chance acquaintance; some nearly naked coolie-porters, who bear longcords, carry off our luggage, and before we know it we are ina carriage, and a rascally guide and interpreter-Heavenknows how he fastened himself upon us in the past five minutes-is on the box and apparently owns us? (It took us halfa day and liberal backsheesh to get rid of the evil-eyed fellow)We have gone only a little distance when half a dozen ofthe naked coolies rush after us, running by the carriage andlaying hold of it , demanding backsheesh. It appears thateither the boatman has cheated them, or they think he will, orthey havn't had enough. Nobody trusts anybody else, andSTREET SCENES IN ALEXANDRIA. 33nobody is ever satisfied with what he gets, in Egypt. Theseblacks, in their dirty white gowns, swinging their porter'sropes and howling like madmen, pursue us a long way andlook as if they would tear us in pieces. But nothing comes ofit. We drive to the Place Mehemet Ali, the European square,-having nothing Oriental about it, a square with an equistrian statue of Mehemet Ali, some trees and a fountainsurrounded by hotels, bankers' offices and Frank shops.There is not much in Alexandria to look at except the people, and the dirty bazaars. We never before had seen so muchnakedness, filth and dirt, so much poverty, and such enjoy.ment of it, or at least indifference to it. We were forced tostrike a new scale of estimating poverty and wretchedness.People are poor in proportion as their wants are not gratified,And here are thousands who have few of the wants that wehave, and perhaps less poverty. It is difficult to estimate thepoverty ofthose fortunate children to whom the generous sungives a warm color for clothing, who have no occupation but tosit in the same, all day, in some noisy and picturesque thoroughfare, and stretch out the hand for the few paras sufficient tobuy their food, who drink at the public fountain, wash in thetank of the mosque, sleep in street-corners, and feel sure oftheir salvation if they know the direction of Mecca. And theMohammedan religion seems to be a sort of soul-compass, bywhich the most ignorant believer can always orient himself.The best-dressed Christian may feel certain of one thing, thathe is the object of the cool contempt of the most naked,opthalmic, flea-attended, wretched Moslem he meets. TheOriental conceit is a peg above ours-it is not self- conscious.In a fifteen minutes walk in the streets the stranger findsall the pictures that he remembers in his illustrated books ofEastern life. There is turbaned Ali Baba, seated on the hindquarters of his sorry donkey, swinging his big feet in a constant effort to urge the beast forward; there is the one-eyedcalender who may have arrived last night from Bagdad; thereis the water-carrier, with a cloth about his loins, staggeringunder a full goat- skin-the skin, legs, head, and all the mem- 334 BEHIND THE VEIL.bers of the brute distended, so that the man seems to be carrying a drowned and water- soaked animal; there is the veiledsister of Zobeide riding a grey donkey astride, with her kneesdrawn up, (as all women ride in the East), entirely envelopedin a white garment which covers her head and puffs out abouther like a balloon-all that can be seen of the woman are thetoes of her pointed yellow slippers and two black eyes; thereis the seller of sherbet, a waterish, feeble, insipid drink, clinking his glasses; and the veiled woman in black, with hungryeyes, is gliding about everywhere. The veil is in two parts,a band about the forehead, and a strip of black which hangsunderneath the eyes and terminates in a point at the waist; thetwo parts are connected by an ornamented cylinder of brass,or silver if the wearer can afford it, two and a half inches longand an inch in diameter. This ugly cylinder between therestless eyes, gives the woman an imprisoned, frightenedlook. Across the street from the hotel, upon the stone copingof the public square, is squatting hour after hour in the sun,a row of these forlorn creatures in black, impassive and waiting. We are told that they are washerwomen waiting for ajob. I never can remove the impression that these women arehalf stifled behind their veils and the shawls which they drawover the head; when they move their heads, it is like the piteous dumb movement of an uncomplaining animal.But the impatient reader is waiting for Pompey's Pillar. Wedrive outside the walls, though a thronged gateway, throughstreets and among people wretched and picturesque to thelast degree. This is the road to the large Moslem cemetery,and to-day is Thursday, the day for visiting the graves. Theway is lined with coffee-shops, where men are smoking andplaying at draughts; with stands and booths for the sale offried cakes and confections; and all along, under foot, sothat it is difficult not to tread on them, are private markets forthe sale of dates, nuts, raisins, wheat, and doora; the bare- legged owner sits on the ground and spreads his dust-covereduntempting fare on a straw mat before him. It is morewretched and forlorn outside the gate than within. We areA MOSLEM CEMETERY. 35amid heaps of rubbish, small mountains of it, perhaps theruins of old Alexandria, perhaps only the accumulated sweepings of the city for ages, piles of dust, and broken pottery.Every Egyptian town ofany size is surrounded by these-therefuse of ages of weary civilization.What a number of old men, of blind men, ragged men—though rags are no disgrace! What a lot of scrawny oldwomen, lean old hags, some of them without their facescovered-even the veiled ones you can see are only bags ofbones. There is a derweesh, a naked holy man, seated in thedirt by the wall, reading the Koran. He has no book, but herecites the sacred text in a loud voice, swaying his bodybackwards and forwards. Now and then we see a shrillvoiced, handsome boy also reading the Koran with all hismight, and keeping a laughing eye upon the passing world.Here comes a novel turn- out. It is a long truck-wagon drawnby one bony-horse. Upon it are a dozen women, squattingabout the edges, facing each other, veiled, in black, silent,jolting along like so many bags of meal. A black imp standsin front, driving. They carry baskets of food and flowers, andare going to the cemetery to spend the day.We pass the cemetery, for the Pillar is on a little hillockoverlooking it. Nothing can be drearier than this buryingground-unless it may be some other Moslem cemetery. Itis an uneven plain of sand, without a spear of grass or a greenthing. It is covered thickly with ugly stucco, oven- like tombs,the whole inconceivably shabby and dust covered; the tombsof the men have head-stones to distinguish them from thewomen. Yet, shabby as all the details of this crumblingcheap place of sepulture are, nothing could be gayer or morefestive than the scene before us. Although the women are inthe majority, there are enough men and children present, incolored turbans, fezes, and gowns, and shawls of Persian dye,to transform the graveyard into the semblance of a parterreofflowers. About hundreds of the tombs are seated in a circle groups of women, with their food before them, and theflowers laid upon the tomb, wailing and howling in the very36 POMPEY'S PILLAR.excess of dry-eyed grief. Here and there a group has employed a "welee" or holy man, or a boy, to read the Koranfor it-and these Koran-readers turn an honest para by theirvocation. The women spend nearly the entire day in thissympathetic visit to their departed friends—it is a custom asold as history, and the Egyptians used to build their tombswith a visiting ante-chamber for the accommodation of the living. I should think that the knowledge that such a group ofwomen were to eat their luncheon , wailing and roosting aboutone's tomb every week, would add a new terror to death.The Pillar, which was no doubt erected by Diocletian to hisown honor, after the modest fashion of Romans as well asEgyptians, is in its present surroundings not an object of enthusiasm, though it is almost a hundred feet high, and themonolith shaft was, before age affected it, a fine piece of polished Syenite. It was no doubt a few thousand years olderthan Diocletian, and a remnant of that oldest civilization; thebase and capital he gave it are not worthy of it. Its principaluse now is as a surface for the paint-brushes and chisels ofdistinguished travelers, who have covered it with their precious names. I cannot sufficiently admire the naïveté and selfdepreciation of those travelers who paint and cut their nameson such monuments, knowing as they must that the firstsensible person who reads the same will say, " This is an ass. ”We drive, still outside the walls, towards the Mahmoodéehcanal, passing amid mounds of rubbish, and getting a view ofthe desert-like country beyond. And now heaves in sightthe unchanged quintessence of Orientalism-there is our firstcamel, a camel in use, in his native setting and not in a menagerie. There is a line of them, loaded with building- stones,wearily shambling along. The long bended neck apes humility, but the supercilious nose in the air expresses perfectcontempt for all modern life. The contrast of this haughty"stuck-up-ativeness " (it is necessary to coin this word to express the camel's ancient conceit ) with the royal ugliness ofthe brute, is both awe-inspiring and amusing. No humanroyal family dare be uglier than the camel. He is a mass ofOUR FIRST CAMEL. 37bones, faded tufts, humps, lumps, splay-joints and callosities.His tail is a ridiculous wisp, and a failure as an ornament or afly-brush. His feet are simply big sponges. For skin covering he has patches of old buffalo robes, faded and with thehair worn off. His voice is more disagreeable than his appearance. With a reputation for patience, he is snappish andvindictive. His endurance is over-rated-that is to say hedies like a sheep on an expedition of any length, if he is notwell fed. His gait moves every muscle like an ague. Andyet this ungainly creature carries his head in the air, andregards the world out of his great brown eyes with disdain .The Sphinx is not more placid. He reminds me, I don'tknow why, of a pyramid. He has a resemblance to a palmtree. It is impossible to make an Egyptian picture withouthim. What a Hapsburg lip he has! Ancient, royal? Thevery poise of his head says plainly, " I have come out of thedim past, before history was; the deluge did not touch me;I saw Menes come and go; I helped Shoofoo build the greatpyramid; I knew Egypt when it hadn't an obelisk nor atemple; I watched the slow building of the pyramid atSakkara. Did I not transport the fathers of your race acrossthe desert? There are three of us; the date-palm, the pyramid, and myself. Everything else is modern. Go to!"Along the canal, where lie dahabeëhs that will by and by maketheir way up the Nile, are some handsome villas, palaces andgardens. This is the favorite drive and promenade. In thegardens, that are open to the public, we find a profusion oftropical trees and flowering shrubs; roses are decaying, but theblossoms ofthe yellow acacia scent the air; there are Egyptianlilies; the plant with crimson leaves, not native here, grows ashigh as the arbutilon tree; the red passion-flower is in bloom,and morning-glories cover with their running vine the tall andslender cypresses. The finest tree is the sycamore, with greatgnarled trunk, and down-dropping branches. Its fruit, thesycamore fig, grows directly on the branch, without stem. It isan insipid fruit, sawdust-y, but the Arabs like it, and have asaying that he who eats one is sure to return to Egypt. After38 DEPARTED GLORY.we had tried to eat one, we thought we should not care to return.The interior was filled with lively little flies; and a priest whowas attending a school of boys taking a holiday in the grove,assured us that each fig had to be pierced when it was green,to let the flies out, in order to make it eatable. But theEgyptians eat them, flies and all.The splendors of Alexandria must be sought in books. Thetraveler will see scarcely any remains of a magnificence whichdazzled the world in the beginning of our era. He may like tosee the mosque that marks the site of the church of St. Mark,and he may care to look into the Coptic convent whence the Venetians stole the body of the saint, about a thousand years ago. Ofcourse we go to see that wonder of our childhood, Cleopatra'sNeedles, as the granite obelisks are called that were broughtfrom Alexandria and set up before a temple of Cæsar in the timeof Tiberius. Only one is standing, the other, mutilated, liesprone beneath the soil. The erect one stands near the shoreand in the midst of hovels and incredible filth . The name ofthe earliest king it bears is that of Thothmes III. , the great manof Egypt, whose era of conquest was about 1500 years before St.Mark came on his mission to Alexandria.The city which has had as many vicissitudes as most cities,boasting under the Cæsars a population of half a million, thathad decreased to 6,000 in 1800, and has now again grown toover two hundred thousand, seems to be at a waiting point; themerchants complain that the Suez Canal has killed its trade.Yet its preeminence for noise, dirt and shabbiness will hardlybe disputed; and its bazaars and streets are much more interesting, perhaps because it is the meeting-place of all races, thantravelers usually admit.We had scarcely set foot in our hotel when we were salutedand waited for by dragomans of all sorts. They knocked at ourdoors, they waylaid us in the passages; whenever we emergedfrom our rooms half a dozen rose up, bowing low; it was likebeing a small king, with obsequious attendants waiting everymotion. They presented their cards, they begged we wouldstep aside privately for a moment and look at the bundle ofEGYPTIAN DRAGOMANS. 39recommendations they produced; they would not press themselves, but if we desired a dragoman for the Nile they were atour service. They were of all shades of color, except white, andof all degrees of oriental splendor in their costume.There wereEgyptians, Nubians, Maltese, Greeks, Syrians. They speak wellall the languages of the Levant and of Europe, except the one inwhich you attempt to converse with them. I never made theacquaintance of so many fine fellows in the same space of time.All of them had the strongest letters of commendation fromtravelers whom they had served, well- known men of letters andof affairs. Travelers give these endorsem*nts as freely as theysign applications for government appointments at home.The name of the handsome dragoman who walked with usthrough the bazaars was, naturally enough, Ahmed Abdallah.He wore the red fez (tarboosh) with a gay kuffia bound aboutit; an embroidered shirt without collar or cravat; a long shawlof checked and bright-colored Beyrout silk girding the loins, inwhich was carried his watch and heavy chain; a cloth coat; andbaggy silk trousers that would be a gown if they were not splitenough to gather about each ankle. The costume is ratherSyrian than Egyptian, and very elegant when the materials arefine; but with a suggestion of effeminacy, to Western eyes.The native bazaars, which are better at Cairo, reveal to thetraveler, at a glance, the character of the Orient; its cheap tinsel,its squalor, and its occasional richness and gorgeousness. Theshops on each side of the narrow street are little more than goodsized wardrobes, with room for shelves of goods in the rear andfor the merchant to sit cross-legged in front. There is usuallyspace for a customer to sit with him, and indeed two or threecan rest on the edge of the platform. Upon cords stretchedacross the front hang specimens of the wares for sale. Woodenshutters close the front at night. These little cubbies are notonly the places of sale but of manufacture of goods. Everythinggoes on in the view of all the world. The tailor is stitching, thegoldsmith is blowing the bellows of his tiny forge, the saddler isrepairing the old donkey-saddles, the shoemaker is cutting redleather, the brazier is hammering, the weaver sits at his little40 HOLY MOSLEMS.loom with the treadle in the ground-every trade goes on,adding its own clatter to the uproar.What impresses us most is the good nature of the throng,under trying circ*mstances. The street is so narrow that threeor four people abreast make a jam, and it is packed with thosemoving in two opposing currents. Through this mass comes adonkey with a couple of panniers of soil or of bricks, or bundlesof scraggly sticks; or a camel surges in, loaded with buildingjoists or with lime; or a Turkish officer, with a gaily caparisonedhorse impatiently stamping; a porter slams along with a heavybox on his back; the water-carrier with his nasty skin rubsthrough; the vender of sweetmeats finds room for his broadtray; the orange-man pushes his cart into the throng; the Jewauctioneer cries his antique brasses and more antique raiment.Everybody is jostled and pushed and jammed; but everybody isin an imperturbable good humor, for no one is really in a hurry,and whatever is, is as it always has been and will be. And whata cosmopolitan place it is. We meet Turks, Greeks, Copts,Egyptians, Nubians, Syrians, Armenians, Italians; tattered derweeshes, "welees" or holy Moslems, nearly naked, presentingthe appearance of men who have been buried a long time andrecently dug up; Greek priests, Jews, Persian Parsees, Algerines, Hindoos, negroes from Darfoor, and flat-nosed blacks frombeyond Khartoom.The traveler has come into a country of holiday which isperpetual. Under this sun and in this air there is nothing to dobut to enjoy life and attend to religion five times a day. Welook into a mosque; in the cool court is a fountain for washing;the mosque is sweet and quiet, and upon its clean matting a rowof Arabs are prostrating themselves in prayer towards the nichethat indicates the direction of Mecca. We stroll along the openstreets encountering a novelty at every step. Here is a musician, a Nubian playing upon a sort of tambour on a frame; apicking, feeble noise he produces, but he is accompanied by theoddest character we have seen yet. This is a stalwart, wildeyed son of the sand, coal-black, with a great mass of uncombed,disordered hair hanging about his shoulders. His only clothingPRIMITIVE life in EGYPT. 41is a breech-cloth and a round shaving- glass bound upon hisforehead; but he has hung about his waist heavy strings of goats'hoofs, and those he shakes, in time to the tambour, by a tremulous motion of his big hips as he minces about. He seems soIvastly pleased with himself that I covet knowledge of his language, in order to tell him that he looks like an idiot.Near the Fort Napoleon, a hill by the harbor, we encounteranother scene peculiar to the East. A yellow- skinned, cunningeyed conjurer has attracted a ring of idlers about him, who squatin the blowing dust, under the blazing sun, and patiently watchhis antics. The conjurer himself performs no wonders, but thespectators are a study of color and feature. The costumes arebrilliant red, yellow, and white. The complexions exhaust thepossibilities of human color. I thought I had seen black peoplein South Carolina; but I saw a boy just now standing in adoorway who would have been invisible but for his white shirt;and here is a fat negress in a bright yellow gown and kerchief,whose jet face has taken an incredible polish; only the mostaccomplished boot-black could raise such a shine on a shoe;tranquil enjoyment oozes out of her. The conjurer is assistedbytwo mites of children, a girl and a boy (no clothing wastedon them) , and between the three a great deal of jabber andwhacking with cane sticks is going on, but nothing is performedexcept the taking of a long snake from a bag and tying it'round the little girl's neck. Paras are collected, however, andthat is the main object of all performances.A little further on, another group is gathered around a storyteller, who is reeling off one of the endless tales in which theArab delights; love-adventures, not always the most delicate butnone the less enjoyed for that, or the story of some poor ladwho has had a wonderful career and finally married the Sultan'sdaughter. He is accompanied in his narrative by two menthumping upon darabooka drums, in a monotonous, sleepyfashion, quite in accordance however with the everlasting leisurethat pervades the air. Walking about are the venders of sweets,and of greasy cakes, who carry tripods on which to rest theirbrass trays, and who split the air with their cries.42 THE LAND OF COLOR AND THE SUN.It is color, color, that makes all this shifting panorama sofascinating, and hides the nakedness, the squalor, the wretchedness of all this unconcealed poverty; color in flowing garments, color in the shops, color in the sky. We have come tothe land of the sun.At night when we walk around the square we stumble overbundles of rags containing men who are asleep, in all the corners, stretched on doorsteps, laid away on the edge of thesidewalk. Opposite the hotel is a casino, which is more Frankthan Egyptian. The musicians are all women and Germansor Bohemians; the waiter-girls are mostly Italian; one ofthem says she comes from Bohemia, and has been in India, towhich she proposes to return. The habitués are mostly youngEgyptians in Frank dress except the tarboosh, and Italians, alleffeminate fellows. All the world of loose living and wandering meets here. Italian is much spoken. There is little thatis Oriental here, except it may be a complaisance towardanything enervating and languidly wicked that Europe has tooffer. This cheap concert is, we are told, all the amusem*ntat night that can be offered the traveler, by the once pleasureloving city of Cleopatra, in the once brilliant Greek capitalin which Hypatia was a star.



EGYPT has excellent railways. There is no reason whyit should not have. They are made without difficultyand easily maintained in a land of no frosts; only wherethey touch the desert an occasional fence is necessary againstthe drifting sand. The rails are laid, without wooden sleepers,on iron saucers, with connecting bands, and the track is firmand sufficiently elastic. The express train travels the 131miles to Cairo in about four and a half hours, running witha punctuality, and with Egyptian drivers and conductors too,that is unique in Egypt. The opening scene at the station didnot promise expedition or system .We reach the station three quarters of an hour before thedeparture of the train, for it requires a long time—in Egypt,as everywhere in Europe to buy tickets and get baggageweighed. The officials are slower workers than our treasuryclerks. There is a great crowd of foreigners, and the baggageroom is piled with trunks of Americans, ' boxes ' of Englishinen, and chests and bundles of all sorts. Behind a highcounter in a smaller room stand the scales, the weigher, andthe clerks. Piles of trunks are brought in and dumped by theporters, and thrust forward by the servants and dragomansupon the counter, to gain them preference at the scales. Nosooner does a dragoman get in his trunk than another is thrustahead of it, and others are hurled on top, till the whole pilecomes down with a crash. There is no system, there areneither officials nor police, and the excited travelers are free4344 ORIENTAL fight it out amongthemselves. To venture into the mélée isto risk broken bones, and it is wiser to leave the battle to luckand the dragomans. The noise is something astonishing. Ascore or two of men are yelling at the top of their voices,screaming, scolding, damning each other in polyglot, gesticulating, jumping up and down, quivering with excitement. This is your Oriental repose! If there were any ruleby which passengers could take their turns, all the trunkscould be quickly weighed and passed on; but now in thescrimmage not a trunk gets to the scales, and a half hour goesby in which no progress is made and the uproar mountshigher.Finally, Ahmed, slight and agile, handing me his cane,kuffia and watch, leaps over the heap of trunks on the counter and comes to close quarters with the difficulty. He succeeds in getting two trunks upon the platform of the scales,but a traveler, whose clothes were made in London, tips themoff and substitutes his own. The weighers stand patientlywaiting the result of the struggle. Ahmed hurls off the stranger's trunk, gives its owner a turn that sends him spinningover the baggage, and at last succeeds in getting our luggageweighed. He emerges from the scrimmage an exhausted man,and we get our seats in the carriage just in time. However,it does not start for half an hour.The reader would like to ride from Alexandria to Cairo,but he won't care to read much about the route. It is our firstexperience of a country living solely by irrigation—the occasional winter showers being practically of no importance.We pass along and over the vast shallows of Lake Mareotis, a lake in winter and a marsh in summer, ride betweenmarshes and cotton-fields, and soon strike firmer ground. Weare traveling, in short, through a Jersey flat, a land black, fat,and rich, without an elevation, broken only by canals and divided into fields by ditches. Every rod is cultivated, and thereare no detached habitations. The prospect cannot be calledlively, but it is not without interest; there are ugly buffaloesin the coarse grass, there is the elegant white heron, whichARTIFICIAL IRRIGATION. 45travelers insist is the sacred ibis, there are some doleful-looking fellaheen, with donkeys, on the bank ofthe canal, there isa file of camels, and there are shadoofs. The shadoof is theprimitive method of irrigation, and thousands of years havenot changed it. Two posts are driven into the bank of thecanal, with a cross-piece on top. On this swings a pole witha bucket of leather suspended at one end, which is outweighedby a ball of clay at the other. The fellah stands on the slopeof the bank and, dipping the bucket into the water, raises itand pours the fluid into a sluice-way above. If the bank ishigh, two and sometimes three shadoofs are needed to raisethe water to the required level. The labor is prodigiously hardand back-straining, continued as it must be constantly. Allthe fellaheen we saw were clad in black, though some had acloth about their loins. The workman usually stands in asort of a recess in the bank, and his color harmonizes with thedark soil. Any occupation more wearisome and less beneficial to the mind I cannot conceive. To the credit of theEgyptians, the men alone work the shadoof. Women heretug water, grind the corn, and carry about babies, always; butI never saw one pulling at a shadoof pole.There is an Arab village! We need to be twice assuredthat it is a village. Raised on a slight elevation, so as to escape high water, it is still hardly distinguishable from theland, certainly not in color. All Arab villages look like ruins;this is a compacted collection of shapeless mud- huts, flat- toppedand irregularly thrown together. It is an aggregation of dogkennels, baked in the sun and cracked. However, a clump ofpalm-trees near it gives it an air of repose, and if it possesses amosque and a minaret it has a picturesque appearance, if theobserver does not go too near. And such are the habitationsof nearly all the Egyptians.Sixty-five miles from Alexandria, we cross the Rosettabranch ofthe Nile, on a fine iron bridge-even this portion ofthe Nile is a broad, sprawling river; and we pass throughseveral respectable towns which have an appearance ofthrift-Tanta especially, with its handsome station and a pal-46 THE PYRAMIDS OF GEEZEH.ace of the Khedive. At Tanta is held three times a year agreat religious festival and fair, not unlike the old fairof the ancient Egyptians at Bubastis in honor of Diana,with quite as many excuses, and like that, with a gramme ofreligion to a pound of pleasure. " Now, " says Herodotus, "whenthey are being conveyed to the city Bubastis, they act as follows:-for men and women embark together, and great numbersof both sexes in every barge: some of the women have castanetson which they play, and the men play on the flute during thewhole voyage; and the rest of the women and men sing and claptheir hands together at the same time. " And he goes on to saythat when they came to any town they moored the barge, andthe women chaffed those on shore, and danced with indecentgestures; and that at the festival more wine was consumed thanall the rest of the year. The festival at Tanta is in honor of afamous Moslem saint whose tomb is there; but the tomb isscarcely so attractive as the field of the fête, with the story- tellers and the jugglers and booths of dancing girls.We pass decayed Benha with its groves of Yoosef-Effendi oranges-the small fruit called Mandarin by foreigners, and preferredby those who like a slight medicinal smell and taste in theorange; and when we are yet twenty miles from Cairo, there inthe south-west, visible for a moment and then hidden by thetrees, and again in sight, faintly and yet clearly outlined againstthe blue sky, are two forms, the sight of which gives us a thrill.They stand still in that purple distance in which we have seenthem all our lives. Beyond these level fields and these trees ofsycamore and date-palm, beyond the Nile, on the desert's edge,with the low Libyan hills falling off behind them, as delicate inform and color as clouds, as enduring as the sky they pierce, thePyramids of Geezeh! I try to shake off the impression of theirsolemn antiquity, and imagine how they would strike one if alltheir mystery were removed. But that is impossible. Theimagination always prompts the eye. And yet I believe thatstanding where they do stand, and in this atmosphere, they arethe most impressive of human structures. But the pyramidswould be effective, as the obelisk is not, out of Egypt.OLD FACTS, NEW IDEAS. 47Trees increase in number; we have villas and gardens; thegrey ledges of the Mokattam hills come into view, then the twinslender spires of the Mosque of Mohammed Ali on the citadelpromontory, and we are in the modern station of Cairo; and before we take in the situation are ignominiously driven away ina hotel-omnibus. This might happen in Europe. Yes; butthen, who are these in white and blue and red, these squatters bythe wayside, these smokers in the sun, these turbaned riders onbraying donkeys and grumbling dromedaries; what is all thisfantastic masquerade in open day? Do people live in thesehouses? Do women peep from these lattices? Isn't thatgowned Arab conscious that he is kneeling and praying outdoors? Have we come to a land where all our standards fail,and people are not ashamed of their religion?OCAIRO! Cairo!



Masr-el-Kaherah, The Victorious!City of the Caliphs, of Saláh- e '-deen, of the Memlooks!Town of mediæval romance projected into a prosaic age!More Oriental than Damascus, or Samarcand. Vast, sprawlingcity, with dilapidated Saracenic architecture, pretentious modernbarrack-palaces, new villas and gardens, acres of compacted,squalid, unsunned dwellings. Always picturesque, lamentablydirty, and thoroughly captivating.Shall we rhapsodize over it , or attempt to describe it? Fortunately, writers have sufficiently done both. Let us enjoy it.We are at Shepherd's. It is a caravansary through which theworld flows. At its table d'hôte are all nations; German princes,English dukes and shopkeepers, Indian officers, Americansovereigns; explorers, savants, travelers; they have come for theclimate of Cairo, they are going up the Nile, they are going tohunt in Abyssinia, to join an advance military party on theWhite Nile; they have come from India, from Japan, from Australia, from Europe, from America.We are in the Frank quarter called the Ezbekeëh, which wasmany years ago a pond during high water, then a garden with acanal round it, and is now built over with European houses andshops, except the square reserved for the public garden. Fromthe old terrace in front of the hotel, where the traveler used tolook on trees, he will see now only raw new houses and a streetusually crowded with passers and rows of sleepy donkeys andtheir voluble drivers. The hotel is two stories only, built round48HOTEL LIFE-EGYPTIAN PLAN. 49a court, damp in rainy or cloudy weather (and it is learninghow to rain as high up the Nile as Cairo) , and lacking thecomforts which invalids require in the winter. It is kept on aningenious combination of the American and European plans;that is, the traveler pays a fixed sum per day and then gets a billof particulars, besides, which gives him all the pleasures of theEuropean system. We heard that one would be more Orientallysurrounded and better cared for at the Hotel du Nil; and theKhedive, who tries his hand at everything, has set up a NewHotel on the public square; but, somehow, one enters Shepherd's as easy as he goes into a city gate.They call the house entirely European. But there are pelicans walking about in the tropical garden; on one side is thewall of a harem, a house belonging to the Khedive's mother, aharem with closed shutters, but uninteresting, because there isno one in it , though ostriches are strutting in its paved court;in the rear of the house stretches a great grove of tall datepalms standing in a dusty, débris-strown field-a lazy wind isalways singing through their tops, and a sakiya (a cow- impelledwater-wheel) creaks there day and night; we never lock thedoors of our rooms; long- gowned attendants are always watchingin the passages, and, when we want one, in default of bells,we open the door and clap the hands. All this, with a jugglerperforming before the house; dragomans and servants andmerchants in Oriental costume; the monotonous strumming ofan Arab band in a neighboring café; bricklayers on the unfinished house opposite us, working in white night- gowns andturbans, who might be mistaken at a distance for female sleepwalkers; and from a minaret not far away, the tenor- voicedmuezzins urging us in the most musical invitation everextended to unbelievers, to come to prayer at daylight-thiscannot be called European.An end of the dinner- table, however, is occupied by a loudparty of young Englishmen, a sprinkling of dukes and earls andthose attendants and attentive listeners of the nobility wholaugh inordinately when my lord says a good thing, and areencouraged when my lord laughs loudly at a sally of theirs and450 CAIRO.declares, "well, now, that's very good; a party who seem toregard Cairo as beyond the line of civilization and its requirements. They talk loud, roar in laughing, stare at the ladies, andlight their cigars before the latter have withdrawn. My comradenotices that they call for champagne before fish; we couldoverlook anything but that. Some travelers who are annoyedat their boisterousness speak to the landlord about them, withoutknowing their rank-supposing that one could always tell anearl by his superior manners. These young representatives ofEngland have demanded that the Khedive shall send them ontheir hunting-tour in Africa, and he is to do so at considerablecost; and it is said that he pays their hotel bills in Cairo. Thedesire of the Khedive to stand well with all the European powersmakes him an easy prey to any nobleman who does not like totravel in Egypt at his own expense. (It ought to be added thatwe encountered on the Nile an Englishman of high rank whohad declined the Khedive's offer of a free trip) .Cairo is a city of vast distances, especiallythe new part whichis laid out with broad streets, and built up with isolated houseshaving perhaps a garden or a green court; open squares aredevoted to fountains and flower-beds. Into these broad avenuesthe sun pours, and through them the dust swirls in clouds; everything is covered with it; it imparts its grey tint to the town andsifts everywhere its impalpable powder. No doubt the health ofCairo is greatly improved and epidemics are lessened, by thedestruction of the pestilent old houses and by running widestreets through the old quarters of twisting lanes and sunlessalleys. But the wide streets are uninteresting, and the sojournerin the city likes to escape out of their glare and dust into thecool and shady recesses of the old town. And he has not far togo to do so. A few minutes walk from the Ezbekeëh bringsone into a tangle like the crossing paths of an ants' nest, into thevery heart of the smell and color of the Orient, among people.among shops, in the presence of manners, habits, costumes,occupations centuries old, into a life in which the western manrecognizes nothing familiar.Cairo, between the Mokattam hill of limestone and the Nile,LIFE UNDER THE SUN. 51covers a great deal of ground-about three square miles-onwhich dwell somewhere from a third to a half of a million ofpeople. The traveler cannot see its stock-sights in a fortnight,and though he should be there months he will find somethingnovel in the street-life daily, even though he does not, as Mr.Lane has so admirably done, make a study of the people. And"life " goes on in the open streets, to an extent which always surprises us, however familiar we may be with Italian habits. Peopleeat, smoke, pray, sleep, carry on all their trades in sight of thepassers by-only into the recesses of the harem and the faces ofthe women one may not look. And this last mystery and reservealmost outweighs the openness of everything else. One feels asif he were in a masquerade; the part of the world which isreally most important-womankind-appears to him only inshadow and flitting phantasm. What danger is he in from thesewrapped and veiled figures which glide by, shooting him with adark and perhaps wicked eye; what peril is he in as he slipsthrough these narrow streets with their masked batteries oflatticed windows! This Eastern life is all open to the sun; andyet how little of its secrets does the stranger fathom. I seem tofeel, always, in an Eastern town, that there is a mask of duplicityand concealment behind which the Orientals live; that theyhabitually deceive the traveler in his " gropings after truth. "The best way of getting about Cairo and its environs is on thedonkey. It is cheap and exhilarating. The donkey is easilymounted and easily got off from; not seldom he will weaken inhis hind legs and let his rider to the ground-a sinking operationwhich destroys your confidence in life itself. Sometimes hestumbles and sends the rider over his head. But the gooddonkey never does either. He is the best animal, of his sizeand appearance, living. He has the two qualities of our greatestgenerals, patience and obstinacy. The good donkey is easy asa rocking-chair, sure-footed as a chamois; he can thread anycrowd and stand patiently dozing in any noisy thoroughfare forhours. To ride him is only a slight compromise of one's independence in walking. One is so near the ground, and so absentmindedly can he gaze at what is around him, that he forgets that52 THE INDISPENSABLE DONKEY.there is anything under him. When the donkey, in the excitement of company on the open street and stimulated by thewhacks and cries of his driver, breaks into the rush of a gallop,there is so much flying of legs and such a general flutter that therider fancies he is getting over the ground at an awful rate,running a breakneck race; but it does not appear so to anobserver. The rider has the feeling of the swift locomotion ofthe Arab steed without its danger or its expense. Besides, along- legged man, with a cork hat and a flying linen " duster, "tearing madly along on an animal as big as a sheep, is an amusing spectacle.The donkey is abused, whacked, beaten till he is raw, saddledso that all the straps gall him, hard-ridden, left for hours to beassailed by the flies in the street, and ridiculed by all men. Iwish we could know what sort of an animal centuries of goodtreatment would have made of him. Something no doubt quitebeyond human deserts; as it is, he is simply indispensable inEastern life. And not seldom he is a pet; he wears jinglingbells and silver ornaments around his neck; his hair is shavedin spots to give him a variegated appearance, and his mane andtail are dyed with henna; he has on an embroidered cloth bridleand a handsome saddle, under which is a scarlet cloth workedwith gold. The length and silkiness of his ears are signs of hisgentle breeding. I could never understand why he is loadedwith such an enormous saddle; the pommel of it rising up infront of the rider as big as a half-bushel measure. Perhaps it isthought well to put this mass upon his back so that he will notnotice or mind any additional weight.The donkey's saving quality, in thisAnd, yet, he is not without ambition.on the road by a fellow; and if one attempts it, he is certain tosheer in ahead of him and shove him off the track. " Donkeyjealous one anoder, " say the drivers.exacting world, is inertia.He dislikes to be passedEach donkey has his driver or attendant, without whosepresence, behind or at the side, the animal ceases to go forward.These boys, and some of them are men in stature, are the quickest-witted, most importunate, good-natured vagabonds in theCLEARING THE WAY. 53world. They make a study of human nature, and accuratelymeasure every traveler the moment he appears. They are agileto do errands, some of them are better guides than the professionals, they can be entrusted with any purchases you may make,they run, carrying their slippers in their hand, all day beside thedonkey, and get only a pittance of pay. They are however ajolly, larkish set, always skylarking with each other, and arenot unlike the newspaper boys of New York; now and then oneof them becomes a trader or a dragoman and makes his fortune.If you prefer a carriage, good vehicles have become plenty oflate years, since there are broad streets for driving; and somevery handsome equipages are seen, especially towards eveningon the Shoobra road, up and down which people ride and driveto be seen and to see, as they do in Central or Hyde parks. Itis en règle to have a saïs running before the carriage, and it is the"swell thing " to have two of them. The running saïs before arapidly driven carriage is the prettiest sight in Cairo. He isusually a slender handsome black fellow, probably a Nubian,brilliantly dressed, graceful in every motion, running withperfect ease and able to keep up his pace for hours withoutapparent fatigue. In the days of narrow streets his serviceswere indispensable to clear the way; and even now he is usefulin the frequented ways where every one walks in the middle ofthe street, and the chattering, chaffing throngs are as heedless ofanything coming as they are of the day of judgment. In redtarboosh with long tassel, silk and gold embroidered vest andjacket, colored girdle with ends knotted and hanging at the side,short silk trousers and bare legs, and long staff, gold-tipped, inthe hand, as graceful in running as Antinous, they are mostelegant appendages to a fashionable turnout. If they could notbe naturalized in Central Park, it might fill some of the requirements of luxury to train a patriot from the Green Isle to runbefore the horses, in knee-breeches, flourishing a shillalah .Faith, I think he would clear the way.Especially do I like to see the saïs coming down the windbefore a carriage of the royal harem . The outriders areeunuchs, two in front and two behind; they are blacks, dressed54 HUMAN black clothes, European cut, except the tarboosh. They ridefine horses, English fashion, rising in the saddle; they have longlimbs, lank bodies, cruel, weak faces, and yet cunning; they aresleek, shiny, emasculated . Having no sex, you might say theyhave no souls. How can these anomalies have any virtue , sincevirtue implies the opportunity of its opposite? These semblances of men seem proud enough of their position, however,and of the part they play to their masters, as if they did notknow the repugnance they excite. The carriage they attend iscovered, but the silken hangings of the glass windows are drawnaside, revealing the white-veiled occupants. They indeed haveno constitutional objections to being seen; the thin veil enhancestheir charms, and the observer who sees their painted faces andbright languishing eyes, no doubt gives them credit for as muchbeauty as they possess; and as they flash by, I suppose thatevery one, is convinced that he has seen one of the mysteriousCircassian or Georgian beauties.The minute the traveler shows himself on the hotel terrace,the donkey-boys clamor, and push forward their animals uponthe sidewalk; it is no small difficulty to select one out of thetangle; there is noise enough used to fit out an expedition to thedesert, and it is not till the dragoman has laid vigorously abouthim with his stick that the way is clear. Your nationality isknown at a glance, and a donkey is instantly named to suit you-the same one being called, indifferently, " Bismarck " if youare German, " Bonaparte " if you are French, and " YankeeDoodle " if you are American, or " Ginger Bob " at a venture.We are going to Boulak, the so-called port of Cairo, to selecta dahabeëh for the Nile voyage. We are indeed only gettingready for this voyage, and seeing the city by the way. Thedonkey-boys speak English like natives--of Egypt. The onerunning beside me, a handsome boy in a long cotton shirt, isnamed, royally, Mahmoud Hassan." Are you the brother of Hassan whom I had yesterday? "" No. He, Hassan not my brother; he better, he friend.Breakfast, lunch, supper, all together, all same; all same money.We friends. "A REPRESENTATIVE ARAB. 55Abd-el-Atti, our dragoman, is riding ahead on his grey donkey,and I have no difficulty in following his broad back and shortlegs, even though his donkey should be lost to sight in thepress. He rides as Egyptians do, without stirrups, and useshis heels as spurs. Since Mohammed Abd- el- Atti Effendifirst went up the Nile, it is many years ago now, with Mr.Wm. C. Prime, and got his name prominently into the Nileliterature, he has grown older, stout, and rich; he is entitledby his position to the distinction of " Effendi. " He boasts agood family, as good as any; most of his relatives are, andhe himself has been, in government employ; but he left itbecause, as he says, he prefers one master to a thousand.When a boy he went with the embassy of Mohammed Ali toEngland, and since that time he has traveled extensively ascourier in Europe and the Levant and as mail-courier toIndia. Mr. Prime described him as having somewhat thecomplexion and features of the North American Indian; it istrue, but he has a shrewd restless eye, and very mobilefeatures, quick to image his good humor or the reverse,breaking into smiles, or clouding over upon his easily arousedsuspicion. He is a good study of the Moslem and the realOriental, a combination of the easy, procrastinating fatalism,and yet with a tindery temper and an activity of body andmind that we do not usually associate with the East. Hisprejudices are inveterate, and he is an unforgiving enemy anda fast, self-sacrificing friend. Not to be driven, he can alwaysbe won by kindness. Fond of money and not forgetting thelast piastre due him, he is generous and lavish to a fault. Adevout Moslem, he has seen too much of the world not to beliberalized. He knows the Koran and the legendary historyofthe Arabs, and speaks and writes Arabic above the average.An exceedingly shrewd observer and reader of character,and a mimic of other's peculiarities, he is a good raconteur, inhis peculiar English, and capital company. It is, by the way,worth observing what sharp observers all these Eastern peoplebecome, whose business it is to study and humor the whimsand eccentricities of travelers. The western man who thinks56 SELECTING DRAGOMANS.that the Eastern people are childlike or effete, will change hismind after a few months acquaintance with the shrewdEgyptians. Abd- el - Atti has a good deal of influence andeven authority in his sphere, and although his executiveability is without system, he brings things to pass. Whereverhe goes, however, there is a ripple and a noise. He wouldlike to go to Nubia with us this winter, he says, " for shangeof air."So much is necessary concerning the character who is to beour companion for many months. No dragoman is better knownin the East; he is the sheykh of the dragomans of Cairo, andby reason of his age and experience he is hailed on the river asthe sultan of the Nile. He dresses like an Englishman, excepthis fez.The great worry of the voyager in Egypt, from the momenthe lands, is about a dragoman; his comfort and pleasure dependvery much upon a right selection. The dragoman and thedahabeëh interest him more than the sphinx and the greatpyramids. Taking strangers up the Nile seems to be the greatbusiness of Egypt, and all the intricacies and tricks of it areslowly learned. Ignorant of the language and ofthe characterof the people, the stranger may well be in a maze of doubtand perplexity. His gorgeously attired dragoman, whoserecommendations would fit him to hold combined the officesof President of the American Bible Society and caterer forDelmonico, often turns out to be ignorant of his simplestduties, to have an inhabited but uninhabitable boat, tofurnish a meagre table, and to be a sly knave. The travelerwill certainly have no peace from the importunity of thedragomans until he makes his choice. One hint can begiven it is always best in a Moslem country to take aMoslem dragoman.We are on our way to Boulak. The sky is full of whitelight. The air is full of dust; the streets are full of noisecolor, vivid life and motion. Everything is flowing, free,joyous. Naturally people fall into picturesque groups, forming, separating, shifting like scenes on the stage. NeitherAN EGYPTIAN MARKET-PLACE. 57the rich silks and brilliant dyes, nor the tattered rags, andbrowns and greys are out of place; full dress and nakednessare equally en régle. Here is a grave, long- bearded merchantin full turban and silk gown, riding his caparisoned donkeyto his shop, followed by his pipe-bearer; here is a half- nakedfellah seated on the rear of his sorry-eyed beast, with a basketof greens in front of him; here are a group of women,hunched astride their donkeys, some in white silk and somein black, shapeless in their balloon mantles, peeping at theworld over their veils; here a handsome saïs runs ahead of acarriage with a fat Turk lolling in it, and scatters the loiterersright and left; there are porters and beggars fast asleep bythe roadside, only their heads covered from the sun; there arelines of idlers squatting in all- day leisure by the wall, smoking,or merely waiting for tomorrow.As we get down to Old Boulak the Saturday market isencountered. All Egyptian markets occupy the street orsome open place, and whatever is for sale here, is exposedto the dust and the sun; fish, candy, dates, live sheep, doora,beans, all the doubtful and greasy compounds on brass trays,which the people eat, nuts, raisins, sugar- cane, cheap jewelry.It is difficult to force a way through the noisy crowd. Thedonkey- boy cries perpetually, to clear the way, "ya," takecare, “shimálak! " to the left, "yemenak! " to the right,ya! riglak! look out for your left leg, look out for your rightleg, make way boy, make way old woman; but we jogglethe old woman, and just escape stepping on the children andbabies strewn in the street, and tread on the edge of matsspread on the ground, upon which provisions are exposed (tothe dust) for sale. In the narrow, shabby streets, withdilapidated old balconies meeting overhead, we encounterloaded camels, donkeys with double panniers, hawkers ofvegetables; and dodge through, bewildered by color andstunned by noise. What is it that makes all picturesque?More dirt, shabbiness, and nakedness never were assembled.That fellow who has cut armholes in a sack för holding nuts,and slipped into it for his sole garment, would not make a58 DAHABEEhs of the nile.good figure on Broadway, but he is in place here, and as fitlydressed as anybody. These rascals will wear a bit of oldcarpet as if it were a king's robe, and go about in a pair ofdrawers that are all rags and strings, and a coarse toweltwisted about the head for turban, with a gay insouciance thatis pleasing. In fact, I suppose that a good, well- fitting blackor nice brown skin is about as good as a suit of clothes.But O! the wrinkled, flabby-breasted old women, who makea pretence of drawing the shawl over one eye; the naked, bigstomached children with spindle legs, who sit in the sand andnever brush away the circle of flies around each gummy eye!The tumble-down houses, kennels in which the family sleep,the poverty of thousands of years, borne as if it were the onlylot of life! In spite of all this, there is not, I venture to say,in the world beside, anything so full of color, so gay andbizarre as a street in Cairo. And we are in a squalid suburb.At the shore of the swift and now falling Nile, at Boulak,are moored, four or five deep, the passenger dahabeëhs,more than a hundred of them, gay with new paint and newcarpets, to catch the traveler. There are small and large, oldand new (but all looking new); those that were used forfreight during the summer and may be full of vermin, andthose reserved exclusively for strangers. They can be hiredat from sixty pounds to two hundred pounds a month; theEnglish owner of one handsomely furnished wanted sevenhundred and fifty pounds for a three-months' voyage. TheNile trip adds luxury to itself every year, and is getting socostly that only Americans will be able to afford it.After hours of search we settle upon a boat that will suitus, a large boat that had only made a short trip, and so newthat we are at liberty to christen it; and the bargaining for itbegins. That is, the bargaining revolves around that boat,but glances off as we depart in a rage to this or that other,until we appear to me to be hiring half the craft on the river.We appear to come to terms; again and again Abd- el- Attisays, "Well, it is finish," but new difficulties arise.The owners were an odd pair: a tall Arab in soiled gownA PROTRACTED BARGAIN. 59and turban, named Ahmed Aboo Yoosef, a mild and waryMoslem; and Habib Bagdadli, a furtive little Jew in Frankdress, with a cast in one of his pathetic eyes and a beseechinglook, who spoke bad French fluently. Aboo Yoosef wasready to cometo terms, but Bagdadli stood out; then Bagdadliacquiesced but Aboo made conditions. Ab-del-Atti alternately coaxed and stormed; he pulled the Arab's beard; andhe put his arm round his neck and whispered in his ear."Come, let us to go, dis Jews make me mad. I can't doanything with dis little Jews."Our dragoman's greatest abhorrence is a Jew. Where isthis one from? I ask ."He from Algiers." The Algerian Jews have a bad reputation.“No, no, monsieur, pas Algiers,” cries the little Jew, appealingto me with a pitiful look; " I am from Bagdad." In proof ofthis there was his name-Habib Bagdadli.The bargaining goes on, with fine gesticulation, despairingattitudes, tones of anger and of grief, violent protestationsand fallings into apathy and dejection. It is Arab againstArab and a Jew thrown in."I will have this boat, but I not put you out of the way onit; " says Abd- el-Atti, and goes at it again,My sympathies are divided. I can see that the Arab andthe Jew will be ruined if they take what we offer. I knowthat we shall be ruined if we give what they ask. Thispathetic-eyed little Jew makes me feel that I am oppressinghis race; and yet I am quite certain that he is trying tooverreach us. Howthe bargain is finally struck I know not,but made it seems to be, and clinched by Aboo reluctantlypulling his purse from his bosom and handing Abd-el- Atti anapoleon. That binds the bargain; instead of the hiredpaying something, the lessor gives a pledge.Trouble, however, is not ended.additions are to be made, and it isthe evasive couple complete twenty pounds to release them.Certain alterations andnearly two weeks beforeThe next day they offerThe pair are always60 EGYPTIAN WILES.hanging about for some mitigation or for some advance. Thegentle Jew, who seems to me friendless, always excites the ireof our dragoman; " Here comes dis little Jews, " he exclaimsas he encounters him in the street, and forces him to go andfulfil some neglected promise.The boat is of the largest size, and has never been abovethe Cataract; the owners guarantee that it can go, and thereis put in the contract a forfeit of a hundred pounds if it willnot. We shall see afterwards how the owners sought tocircumvent us. The wiles of the Egyptians are slowlylearned by the open-minded stranger.



UR sight- seeing in Cairo is accomplished under thesuperintendence of another guide and dragoman, acheerful, willing, good- natured and careful Moslem,with one eye. He looks exactly like the one- eyed calenderof the story; and his good eye has a humorous and inquiringtwinkle in it. His name is Hassan, but he prefers to be calledHadji, the name he has taken since he made the pilgrimage toМесса.A man who has made the pilgrimage is called “ the hhágg, "a woman"the hhággeh."--often spelled and pronounced "hadj"and "hadjee." It seems to be a privilege oftravelers to spell Arabic words as they please, and no two writers agree on a singleword or name. The Arabs take a new name or discard anold one as they like, and half a dozen favorite names do dutyfor half the inhabitants. It is rare to meet one who hasn'tsomewhere about him the name of Mohammed, Ahmed, Ali,Hassan, Hosayn, or Mahmoud. People take a new name asthey would a garment that strikes the fancy."You like go bazaar? " asks Hadji, after the party ismounted on donkeys in front of the hotel."Yes, Hadji, go by the way ofthe Mooskee."The Mooskee is the best known street in Cairo, and the onlyone in the old part of the town that the traveler can findunaided. It runs straight, or nearly so, a mile perhaps, intothe most densely built quarters, and is broad enough forcarriages. A considerable part of it is roofed lightly over6162 AN EASTERN BAZAAR.with cane or palm slats, through which the sun sifts a littlelight, and, being watered, it is usually cool and pleasant. Itcannot be called a good or even road, but carriages anddonkeys pass over it without noise, the wheels making only asmothered sound: you may pass through it many times andnot discover that a canal runs underneath it. The lower partof it is occupied by European shops. There are no fineshops in it like those in the Ezbekeëh, and it is not interestinglike the bazaars, but it is always crowded. Probably nostreet in the world offers such a variety of costumes andnationalities, and in no one can be heard more languages. Itis the main artery, from which branch off the lesser veins andreticulations leading into the bazaars.Ifthe Mooskee is crowded, the bazaars are a jam . Differenttrades and nationalities have separate quarters, articles thatare wanted are far apart, and one will of necessity consume a'day in making two or three purchases. It is an achievementto find and bargain for a piece of tape.In one quarter are red slippers, nothing but red slippers,hundreds of shops hung with them, shops in which they aremade and sold; the yellow slippers are in another quarter, andby no chance does one merchant keep both kinds. There arethe silk bazaars, the gold bazaars, the silver bazaars, the brass,the arms, the antiquity, the cotton, the spice, and the fruitbazaars. In one quarter the merchants and manufacturers areall Egyptians, in another Turks, in another Copts, or Algerines,or Persians, or Armenians, or Greeks, or Syrians, or Jews.And what is a bazaar? Simply a lane, narrow, straight orcrooked, winding, involved, interrupted by a fountain, or amosque, intersected by other lanes, a congeries of lanes, roofedwith matting it may be, on each side of which are the littleshops, not much bigger than a dry-goods box or a Saratogatrunk. Frequently there is a story above, with hanging balconies and latticed windows. On the ledge of his shop themerchant, in fine robes of silk and linen, sits cross- legged,probably smoking his chibook. He sits all day sipping coffeeand gossipping with his friends, waiting for a customer. At the"A GUEST OF GOD AND THE PROPHET." 63times of prayer he spreads his prayer-carpet and pursues hisdevotions in sight of all the world.This Oriental microcosm called a bazaar is the most characteristic thing in the East, and affords most entertainment; inthese cool recesses, which the sun only penetrates in glints, isall that is shabby and all that is splendid in this land of violentcontrasts. The shops are rude, the passages are unpaved dirt,the matting above hangs in shreds, the unpainted balconies areabout to tumble down, the lattice-work is grey with dust; fleasabout; you are jostled by an unsavory throng may be; runagainst by loaded donkeys; grazed by the dripping goat-skinsof the water-carriers; beset by beggars; followed by Jewsoffering old brasses, old cashmeres, old armor; squeezed againstblack backs from the Soudan; and stunned by the sing- songcries of a dozen callings. But all this is nothing. Here arethe perfumes of Arabia, the colors of Paradise. These narrowstreets are streams of glancing color; these shops are morebrilliant than any picture-but in all is a softened harmony, theancient art of the East.We are sitting at a corner, pricing some pieces of old brassand arms. The merchant sends for tiny cups of coffee andoffers cigarettes. He and the dragoman are wrangling aboutthe price of something for which five times its value is asked.Not unlikely it will be sold for less than it is worth, for neithertrader nor traveler has any idea of its value. Opposite is ashop where three men sit cross-legged, making cashmere shawlsby piecing old bits of India scarfs. Next shop is occupied onlyby a boy who is reading the Koran in a loud voice, rockingforwards and backwards. A stooping seller of sherbet comesalong clinking his glasses. A vender of sweetmeats sets histray before us. A sorry beggar, a dwarf, beseeches in figurativelanguage."What does he want, Hadji? ""He say him hungry, want piece bread; O, no matter for he. "The dragomans never interpret anything, except by shortWhat the dwarf is really saying, according to Mr. Lane, is,"For the sake of God! O ye charitable. I am seeking fromcuts.64 WORKS MEET FOR lord a cake of bread. I am the guest of God and theProphet."As we cannot content him by replying in like strain, “ Godenrich thee, " we earn his blessing by a copper or two.Across the street is an opening into a nest of shops, gailyhung with embroideries from Constantinople, silks from Broussaand Beyrout, stuffs of Damascus; a Persian rug is spread on themustubah of the shop, swords and inlaid pistols with flint locksshine amid the rich stuffs. Looking down this street, one way,is a long vista of bright color, the street passing under roundarches through which I see an old wall painted in red andwhite squares, upon which the sun falls in a flood of whitelight. The street in which we are sitting turns abruptly at alittle distance, and apparently ends in a high Moorish house,with queer little latticed windows, and balconies, and dustyrecesses full of mystery in this half light; and at the corneropposite that, I see part of a public fountain and hear verydistinctly the " studying " of the school over it.The public fountain is one of the best institutions of Cairo aswell as one of the most ornamental. On the street it is arounded Saracenic structure, highly ornament in carved marbleor stucco, and gaily painted, having in front two or three faucetsfrom which the water is drawn. Within is a tank which isreplenished by water brought in skins from the Nile. Most ofthese fountains are charitable foundations, by pious Moslemswho leave or set apart a certain sum to ensure the yearly supplyof so many skins of water. Charity to the poor is one of thegood traits of the Moslems, and the giving of alms and thebuilding of fountains are the works that will be rewarded inParadise.These fountains, some of which are very beautiful, are oftenerected near a mosque. Over them, in a room with a vaultedroof and open to the street by three or four arches with pillars,is usually a boys' school. In this room on the floor sit themaster and his scholars. Each pupil has before him his lessonwritten on a wooden tablet, and this he is reading at the top ofhis voice, committing it to memory, and swaying incessantlyA MOSLEM FUNERAL. 65backwards and forwards-a movement that is supposed toassist the memory. With twenty boys shouting together, thenoise is heard above all the clamor of the street. If a boy looksoff or stops his recitation, the stick of the schoolmaster sets himgoing again.The boys learn first the alphabet, then the ninety- nineepithets of God, and then the Koran, chapter by chapter. Thisis the sum of human knowledge absolutely necessary; ifthe boyneeds writing and arithmetic he learns them from the steelyardweigher in the market; or if he is to enter any of the professions,he has a regular course of study in the Mosque El Ezher, whichhas thousands of students and is the great University of theEast.Sitting in the bazaar for an hour one will see strange sights;wedding and funeral processions are not the least interestingof them . We can never get accustomed to the ungainly camel,thrusting his huge bulk into these narrow limits, and stretchinghis snake neck from side to side, his dark driver sitting high upin the dusk of the roof on the wooden saddle, and swaying toand fro with the long stride of the beast. The camel ought tobe used in funeral processions, but I believe he is not.We hear now a chanting down the dusky street. Somebodyis being carried to his tomb in the desert outside the city. Theprocession has to squeeze tbrough the crowd. First come a halfdozen old men, rugged and half blind, harbingers of death, whom*ove slowly, crying in a whining tone, " There is no deity butGod; Mohammed is God's apostle; God bless and save him. "Then come two or three schoolboys singing in a more lively airverses of a funeral hymn. The bier is borne by friends of thedeceased, who are relieved occasionally by casual passengers.On the bier, swathed in grave-clothes, lies the body, with a Cashmere shawl thrown over it. It is followed by female hired women,who beat their breasts and howl with shrill and prolonged ululations. The rear is brought up by the female mourners, relationsa group of a dozen in this case-whose hair is dishevelled andwho are crying and shrieking with a perfect abandonment to theluxury of grief. Passengers in the street stop and say, " God 566 THE most great," and the women point to the bier and say, “ Itestify that there is no deity but God."When the funeral has passed and its incongruous mingling ofchanting and shrieking dies away, we turn towards the goldbazaar. All the goldsmiths and silversmiths are Copts; throughout Egypt the working of the precious metals is in their hands.Descended from the ancient Egyptians, or at least having moreof the blood of the original race in them than others, they haveinherited the traditional skill of the ancient workers in thesemetals. They reproduce the old jewelry, the barbarous ornaments, and work by the same rude methods, producingsometimes the finest work with the most clumsy tools.The gold-bazaar is the narrowest passage we have seen.Westep down into its twilight from a broader street. It is in factabout three feet wide, a lane with an uneven floor of earth, oftenslippery. On each side are the little shops, just large enoughfor the dealer and his iron safe, or for a tiny forge, bellows andanvil. Two people have to make way for each other in squeezingalong this alley, and if a donkey comes through he monopolizesthe way and the passengers have to climb upon the mustubahseither side. The mustubah is a raised seat of stone or brick,built against the front of the shop and level with its floor, saytwo feet and a half high and two feet broad. The lower shutterof the shop turns down upon the mustubah and forms a seatupon which a rug is spread. The shopkeeper may sit upon this,or withdraw into his shop to make room for customers, whor*move their shoes before drawing up their feet upon the carpet.Sometimes three or four persons will crowd into this box calleda shop. The bazaar is a noisy as well as a crowded place, forto the buzz of talk and the cries of the itinerant venders isadded the clang of the goldsmiths' hammers; it winds down intothe recesses of decaying houses and emerges in another direction.We are to have manufactured a bracelet of gold of a patternas old as the Pharaohs, and made with the same instrumentsthat the cunning goldsmiths used three thousand years ago.While we are seated and bargaining for the work, the goldsmithunlocks his safe and shows us necklaces, bracelets, anklets, andSHOPPING FOR A NECKLACE. 67earrings in the very forms, bizarre but graceful, of the jewelryof which the Israelites spoiled the Egyptian women. We seejust such in the Museum at Boulak; though these are not so fineas the magnificent jewelry which Queen Aah-hotep, the motherof Amosis, attempted to carry with her into the under-world,and which the scientific violaters of her tomb rescued at Thebes.In the shop opposite to us are squeezed in three Egyptianwomen and a baby, who have come to spend the day in cheapening some bit of jewelry. There is apparently nothing thatthe Cairo women like so much as shopping—at least those whoare permitted to go out at all —and they eke out its delights byconsuming a day or two in buying one article. These womenare taking the trade leisurely, examining slowly and carefully thewhole stock of the goldsmith and deliberating on each bead anddrop of a necklace, glancing slily at us and the passers-by outof their dark eyes meantime. They have brought cakes ofbread for lunch, and the baby is publicly fed as often as hedesires. These women have the power of sitting still in onespot for hours, squatting with perfect patience in a posture thatwould give a western woman the cramp for her lifetime. Weare an hour in bargaining with the goldsmith, and are toreturn late in the afternoon and see the bracelet made beforeour eyes, for no one is expected to trust his fellow here.Thus far the gold has only been melted into an ingot, andthat with many precautions against fraud. I first count out thenapoleons of which the bracelet is to be made. These areweighed. A fire is then kindled in the little forge, the crucibleheated, and I drop the napoleons into it, one by one. We allcarefully watch the melting to be sure that no gold is spilled inthe charcoal and no base metal added. The melted mass isthen run into an ingot, and the ingot is weighed against thesame number of napoleons that compose it. And I carry awaythe ingot.When we return the women are still squatting in the shop inthe attitude of the morning. They show neither impatience norweariness; nor does the shopkeeper. The baby is sprawledout in his brown loveliness, and the purchase of a barbarous68 CONDUCTING A BRIDe home.necklace of beads is about concluded. Our goldsmith nowremoves his outer garment, revealing his fine gown of stripedsilk, pushes up his sleeves and prepares for work. His onlytools are a small anvil, a hammer and a pair of pincers. Theingot is heated and hammered, and heated and hammered, untilit is drawn out into an even, thick wire. This is then folded inthree to the required length, and twisted, till the gold looks likemolasses candy; the ends are then hammered together, and thebracelet is bent to its form. Finally it is weighed again andcleaned. If the owner wishes he can have put on it thegovernment stamp. Gold ornaments that are stamped, thegoldsmith will take back at any time and give for them theirweight in coin, less two per cent.On our way home we encounter a wedding procession; thisis the procession conducting the bride to the house of thebridegroom, that to the bath having taken place two days before.The night of the day before going to the bridegroom is calledthe " Night of henna. " The bride has an entertainment at herown house, receives presents of money, and has her hands and herfeet dyed with henna. The going to the bridegroom is on theeve of either Monday or Friday. These processions we oftenmeet in the streets of Cairo; they wander about circuitouslythrough the town making all the noise and display possible.The procession is a rambling affair and generally attended by arabble of boys and men.This one is preceded by half a dozen shabbily dressedmusicians beating different sorts of drums and blowing hautboys,each instrument on its own hook; the tune, if there was one,has become discouraged, and the melody has dropped out;thump, pound, squeak, the music is more disorganized than theprocession, and draggles on in noisy dissonance like a drunkenmilitia band at the end of a day's " general training."Next come some veiled women in black; and following themare several small virgins in white. The bride walks next, with awoman each side of her to direct her steps. This is necessary,for she is covered from head to feet with a red cashmere shawlhanging from a sort of crown on the the top of her head. She isA PARTNERSHIP MATTER. 69in appearance, simply a red cone. Over her and on three sidesof her, but open in front, is a canopy of pink silk, borne on polesby four men. Behind straggle more musicians, piping andthumping in an independent nonchalance, followed by gleefulboys. One attendant sprinkles rose-water on the spectators,and two or three others seem to have a general directionof the course of the train, and ask backsheesh for it whenever a stranger is met.The procession gets time occasionally and sits down in thedust of the road to rest. Sometimes it is accompanied bydancers and other performers to amuse the crowd. I saw oneyesterday which had halted by the roadside, all the womenexcept the bride squatting down in patient resignation . In ahollow square of spectators, in front, a male dancer wasexhibiting his steps. Holding a wand perpendicularly beforehim with both hands, he moved backwards and forwards, with amincing gait, exhibiting neither grace nor agility, but lookingaround with the most conceited expression I ever saw on ahuman face. Occasionally he would look down at his legs withthe most approving glance, as much as to say, " I trust, Godbeing great, that you are taking particular notice of those legs;it seems to me that they couldn't be improved. " The fellowenjoyed his dancing if no one else did, and it was impossible toget him to desist and let the procession move on. At last thecortège made a détour round the man who seemed to be sopopular with himself, and left him to enjoy his own performance.Sometimes the expense of this zeffeh, or bridal procession, isshared by two parties, and I have seen two brides walking underthe same canopy, but going to different husbands. The publicis not excluded from an interest in these weddings. The houseof a bridegroom, near the Mooskee, was illuminated a night ortwo before the wedding, colored lanterns were hung across thestreet, and story- tellers were engaged to recite in front of thehouse. On the night of the marriage there was a crowd whichgreatly enjoyed the indelicate songs and stories of the hiredperformers. Late in the evening an old woman appeared at awindow and proclaimed that the husband was contented withhis wife.70 EARLY MARRIAGES AND DECAY.An accompaniment of a bridal procession which we sometimessaw we could not understand. Before the procession proper,walked another, preceded by a man carrying on his head ahigh wooden cabinet, with four legs, the front covered with.pieces of looking-glass and bits of brass; behind him weremusicians and attendants, followed by a boy on horseback,dressed richly in clothes too large for him and like a girl's . Itturned out to be a parade before circumcision, the friends ofthe lad having taken advantage of the bridal ceremony of aneighbor to make a display. The wooden case was merely thesign of the barber who walked in the procession and was toperform the operation."I suppose you are married? " I ask Hadji when the procession has gone by."Yes, sir, long time. "“ And you have never had but one wife? ""Have one. He quite nuff for me.""How old was she when you married her? "" Oh, I marry he, when he much girl! I tink he eleven,maybe twelve, not more I tink. "Girls in Egypt are marriageable at ten or eleven, and it issaid that if not married before they are fourteen they have anexcellent chance of being old maids. Precocious to mature,they are quick to fall away and lose their beauty; the laboringclasses especially are ugly and flabby before eighteen. The lowmental, not to say physical, condition of Egyptian women is nodoubt largely due to these early marriages. The girl is marriedand is a mother before she has an opportunity to educate herselfor to learn the duties of wife or mother, ignorant of how tomake a home pleasant and even of housekeeping, and when sheis utterly unfit to have the care and training of a child.Ignorant and foolish, and, as Mr. Lane says, passionate, womenand mothers can never produce a great race. And the onlyreform for Egypt that will give it new vitality and a place in theworld must begin with the women.The Khedive, who either has foresight or listens to goodadvice, issued a firman some years ago forbidding the marriageLONGINGS FOR YOUTH. 71of girls under fifteen. It does not seem to be respected eitherin city or country; though I believe that it has some influence inthe city, and generally girls are not married so young in Cairoas in the country. Yet I heard recently in this city of a man ofsixty who took a wife of twelve. As this was not his first wife, itcould not be said of him, as it is said of some great geniuses,that he struck twelve the first time.



WHAT we in Cairo like most to do, is to do nothing inthe charming winter weather-to postpone the regularand necessary sight-seeing to that limbo to which theArabs relegate everything-bookra, that is, tomorrow. Whynot as well go to the Pyramids or to Heliopolis or to the tombsof the Memlooks tomorrow! It is to be the same fair weather;we never plan an excursion, with the proviso, " If it does notrain." This calm certainty of a clear sky adds twenty-five percent. to the value of life.And yet, there is the Sirocco; that enervating, depressingsouth wind, when all the sands of the hot desert rise up into theair and envelope everything in grit and gloom. I have been onthe Citadel terrace when the city was only dimly outlined in thethick air, and all the horizon and the sky were veiled in dust asif by a black Scotch mist. We once waited three days after wehad set a time to visit the Pyramids, for the air to clear. TheSirocco is bad enough in the town, the fine dust penetrates theclosed recesses of all apartments; but outside the city it isunbearable. Indeed any wind raises the sand disagreeably;and dust is the great plague of Egypt. The streets of Cairo,except those that are sprinkled, are seldom free from cloudsof it. And it is an ancient dust. I suppose the powdereddead ofthousands of years are blowing about in the air.The desert makes itself apparent even in Cairo. Not onlyis it in the air, but it lies in wait close to the walls and houses,ready to enter at the gates, sifting in through every crevice.72THE CITADEL OF CAIRO. 73Only by constant irrigation can it be driven back. As soonas we pass beyond the compact city eastward, we enter thedesert, unless we follow the course of some refreshing canal.The drive upon it is a favorite one on summer nights. I havespoken of the desert as hot; but it is always cool at night;and it is the habit of foreigners who are detained in Cairo inthe summerto go every night to the desert to cool off.The most conspicuous object in Cairo, from all points, isthe Citadel, built on a bold spur of the Mokattam range, andthe adjoining Mosque of Mohammed Ali in which that savageold reformer is buried. The mosque is rather Turkish thanSaracenic, and its two slender minarets are much criticised.You who have been in Constantinople are familiar with thelike slight and graceful forms in that city; they certainlyare not so rich or elegant as many of the elaborately carvedand more robust minarets of Cairo which the genius of the oldarchitects reared in the sun-burst of Saracenic architecture;but they are very picturesque and effective in their position,and especially against a poetic evening sky.When Saláh-e '- deen robbed the pyramids to build the Citadel,he doubtless thought he was erecting a fortification that wouldforever protect his city and be an enduring home for theSultans of Egypt. But Mohammed Ali made it untenable asa fort by placing a commanding battery on the Mokattamledge; and now the Citadel (by which I mean all the groupof buildings) useless as a fort (except to overawe the city)and abandoned as a palace, is little more than a ghost- walk offormer splendors. There are barracks in it; recruits aredrilling in its squares; the minister-of-war occupies some ofits stately apartments; the American General Stone, the chiefofficer ofthe Khedive's army, uses others; in some we find theprimitive presses and the bureaus of the engineers and thetypographical corps; but vast halls and chambers of audience,and suites of apartments of the harem, richly carved andgilded, are now vacant and echo the footsteps of sentriesand servitors. And they have the shabby look of mostEastern architecture when its first freshness is gone.74 MASSACRE of the MEMLOOKS.We sat in the room and on the platform where MohammedAli sat when the slaughter of the Memlooks was going on;he sat motionless, so it is reported, and gave no other sign ofnervousness than the twisting of a piece of paper in his hands.And yet he must have heard the cries under his window, and,of course, the shots of the soldiers on the walls who wereexecuting his orders. We looked down from the balconyinto the narrow, walled lane, with its closed gates, in whichthe five hundred Memlooks were hemmed in and massacred.Think of the nerve of the old Turk, sitting still withoutchanging countenance while five hundred, or more, gallantswash-bucklers were being shot in cool blood under hiswindow! Probably he would not have been so impassive ifhe had seen one of the devoted band escape by spurring hishorse through a break in the wall and take a fearful flyingleap upon the rubbish below.66The world agrees to condemn this treacherous and ferociousact of Mohammed Ali and, generally, I believe, to feel gratefulto him for it. Never was there a clan of men that neededexterminating so much asthe Memlooks. Nothing less wouldhave suited their peculiarities. They were merely a band ofrobbers, black- mailers, and freebooters, a terror to Egypt.Dislodged from actual power, they were still greatly to bedreaded, and no ruler was safe who did not obey them. Theterm Memlook means a white male slave," and is still soused. The Memlooks, who originally were mostly Circassianwhite slaves, climbed from the position of favorites to that oftyrants. They established a long dynasty of sultans, andtheir tombs yonder at the edge of the desert are among themost beautiful specimens of the Saracenic architecture. Theirsovereignty was overthrown by Sultan Selim in 1517 , but theyremained a powerful and aristocratic band which controlledgovernors, corrupted even Oriental society by the introductionof monstrous vices, and oppressed the people. I supposethat in the time of the French invasion they may have beenjoined by bold adventurers of many nations. Egypt couldhave no security so long as any of them remained. It wasTHE MOSQUE OF MOHAMMED ALI. 75doubtless in bad taste for Mohammed Ali to extend a friendlyinvitation to the Memlooks to visit him, and then murderthem when they were caught in his trap; he finally diedinsane, and perhaps the lunacy was providentially on him atthat time.In the Citadel precincts is a hall occupied by the " parliament " of the Khedive, when it is in session; a parliamentwhose members are selected by the Viceroy from all overEgypt, in order that he may have information of the state ofthe country, but a body that has no power and certainly notso much influence in the state as the harem has. But itsvery assemblage is an innovation in the Orient, and it maylead in time to infinite gab, to election briberies and multitudinous legislation, the accompaniments of the highestcivilization. We may yet live to see a member of it rise toenquire into the expenses of the Khedive's numerous family.The great Mosque of Mohammed Ali is in the best repairand is the least frequented of any in Cairo. Its vast, domedinterior, rich in materials and ambitious in design , is impressive,but this, like all other great mosques, strikes the Western manas empty. On the floor are beautiful rugs; a tawdry chandelier hangs in the center, and the great spaces are strung withlanterns. No one was performing ablution at the handsomefountain in the marble-paved court; only a single worshipperwas kneeling at prayer in all the edifice. But I heard a birdsinging sweetly in the airy height of the dome.The view from the terrace of the mosque is the finest inEgypt, not perhaps in extent, but certainly in variety andobjects of interest; and if the atmosphere and the light areboth favorable, it is the most poetic. From it you commandnot only the city and a long sweep ofthe Nile, with fields ofliving green and dark lines of palms, but the ruins andpyramids of slumberous old Memphis, and, amid the yellowsands and backed by the desolate Libyan hills, the dreamypyramids of Geezeh. We are advised to get this view atsunset, because then the light is soft and all the vast landscapehas color. This is good advice so far as the city at our feet is76 TOMBS OF THE MEMLOOK SULTANS.concerned, with its hundreds of minarets and its wide expanseof flat roofs, palm-tops and open squares; there is the bestlight theu also on the purple Mokattam hills; and the tombsof the Memlooks, north of the cemetery, with their fairydomes and exquisite minarets and the encompassing greydesert, the whole bathed in violet light, have a beauty thatwill linger with one who has once seen them forever. Butlooking beyond the Nile, you have the sun in your face. Ishould earnestly entreat the stranger to take this view atsunrise. I never saw it myself at that hour, being alwaysotherwise engaged, but I am certain that the Pyramids andthe Libyan desert would wake at early morning in a glow oftranscendent beauty.We drive out the gate or Bab e' Nasr beyond the desolateMoslem cemetery, to go to the tombs of the Circassian MemlookSultans. We pass round and amid hills of rubbish, dirt, andbroken pottery, the dumpings of the city for centuries, andtravel a road so sandy that the horses can scarcely drag theheavy carriage through it. The public horses of Cairo are sorrybeasts and only need a slight excuse for stopping at any time.There is nothing agreeable about the great Moslem cemetery;it is a field of sand-heaps, thickly dotted with little oven-shapedstucco tombs. They may be pleasanter below ground; for thevault into which the body is put, without a coffin, is high enoughto permit its occupant to sit up, which he is obliged to do,whether he is able to sit up or not, the first night of his staythere, in order to answer the questions of two angels who cometo examine him on his religious practices and views.The Tombs of the Sultans, which are in the desert, are in factvast structures, -tombs and mosques united-and are built ofparti-colored stone. They are remarkable for the beautiful andvaried forms of their minarets and for their aërial domes; thelatter are covered with the most wonderful arabesque carvingand tracing. They stand deserted, with the sand drifting aboutthem, and falling to rapid decay. Inthe interiors are stilltraces of exqusite carving and color, but much of the ornamentation, being of stucco on rude wooden frames, only adds to the"LIFE OUT OF DEATH.” 77appearance of decay. The decay of finery is never respectable.It is not correct, however, to speak of these mosque-tombs asdeserted. Into all of them have crept families of the poor or ofthe vicious. And the business of the occupants, who call themselves guardians, is to extract backsheesh from the visitor.Spinning, knitting, baking, and all the simple household occupations go on in the courts and in the gaunt rooms; one tombis used as a grist-mill. The women and girls dwelling there gounveiled; they were tattooed slightly upon the chin and theforehead, as most Egyptian women are; some of the youngerwere pretty, with regular features and handsome dark eyes.Near the mosques are lanes of wretched homes, occupied by aswretched people. The whole mortal neighborhood swarms(life out of death) with children; they are as thick as jars at apottery factory; they are as numerous as the flies that live onthe rims of their eyes and noses; they are as naked, most of them,as when they were born. The distended condition of theirstomachs testify that they have plenty to eat, and they tumbleabout in the dirt, in the full enjoyment of this delicious climate.People can afford to be poor when nature is their friend.I



SHOULD like to go once to an interesting city where thereare no sights. That city could be enjoyed; and conscience—which never leaves any human being in peace until it hasnagged him into a perfect condition morally, and keeps punchinghim about frivolous little details of duty, especially at thewaking morning hour-would not come to insert her thumbamong the rosy fingers of the dawn.Perhaps I do not make myself clear about conscience. Conscience is a kind ofgastric juice that gnaws upon the very coatingsof a person's moral nature, if it has no indigestible sin to feed on.Of course I know that neither conscience nor gastric juice hasa thumb. And, to get out of these figures, all I wish to say is,that in Cairo, when the traveler is aware of the glow of the morning stealing into his room, as if the day were really openedgently (not ripped and torn open as it is in our own cold north)by a rosy-fingered maiden, and an atmosphere of sweet leisureprevails, then Conscience suggests remorselessly: " To-dayyou must go to the Pyramids, " or, " You must take your pleasurein a drive in the Shoobra road, " or " You must explore dirtyOld Cairo and its Coptic churches," or " You must visit themosques, and see the Howling Derweeshes.But for this Conscience, I think nothing would be so sweet asthe coming of an eastern morning. I fancy that the cool windstirring in the palms is from the pure desert. It may be thatthese birds, so melodiously singing in the garden, are the smallgreen birds who eat the fruits and drink the waters of Paradise,78"PRAYER IS BETTER THAN SLEEP.” 79and in whose crops the souls of martyrs abide until Judgment.As I lie quite still, I hear the call of a muëzzin from a minaretnot far off, the voice now full and clear and now faint, as he walksaround the tower to send his entreaty over the dark roofs ofthe city. I am not disturbed by this early call to the unconverted, for this is not my religion. With the clamor of morningchurch bells in Italy it is different; for to one born in Newto England, Conscience is in the bells.Sometimes at midnight I am dimly conscious of the first callto prayer, which begins solemnly."Prayer is better than sleep. "But the night calls are not obligatory, and I do not fully wake.The calls during the night are long chants, that of the daytime is much shorter. Mr. Lane renders it thus:"God is most Great " (four times repeated). " I testify thatthere is no deity but God " (twice) . " I testify that Mohammedis God's Apostle " (twice). " Come to prayer " (twice) . “ Cometo security " (twice). "God is most Great " (twice) . " There isno deity but God. "The muëzzin whom I hear when the first faint lightappears in the east, has a most sonorous and sweet tenorvoice, and his chant is exceedingly melodious. In the perfecthush ofthat hour his voice fills all the air, and might well bemistaken for a sweet entreaty out of heaven. This call isa long one, and is in fact a confession and proclamationas well as a call to prayer. It begins as follows:"[I extol] the perfection of God, the Existing forever andever " (three times): " the perfection of God, the Desired, theExisting, the Single, the Supreme: the perfection of God, theOne, the Sole: the perfection of Him who taketh to Himself,in his great dominion, neither female companion nor malepartner, nor any like unto Him, nor any that is disobedient,nor any deputy, nor any equal, nor any offspring. Hisperfection [be extolled]: and exalted be His name. He is aDeity who knew what hath been before it was, and calledinto existence what hath been; and He is now existing, as He80 MOSLEMS AT PRAYER.was [at the first]. His perfection [be extolled]: and exaltedbe His name."And it ends: " O God, bless and save and still beatify thebeatified Prophet, our lord Mohammed. And may God,whose name be blessed and exalted, be well pleased with thee,O our lord El- Hassan, and with thee, O our lord El- Hoseyn,and with thee, O Aboo-Farrág, O Sheykh of the Arabs, andwith all the favorites [ ' the welees ' ] of God. Amen."The mosques of Cairo are more numerous than the churchesin Rome; there are about four hundred, many of them inruins, but nearly all in daily use. The old ones are the moreinteresting architecturally, but all have a certain attraction.They are always open, they are cool quiet retreats out of theglare of the sun and the noise of the street; they aredemocratic and as hospitable to the beggar in rags as to thepasha in silk; they offer water for the dusty feet of thepilgrim and a clean mat on which to kneel; and in theirhushed walls, with no images to distract the mind and noritual to rely on, the devout worshipper may feel the presenceof the Unseen. At all hours you will see men praying thereor readingthe Koran, unconscious of any observers. WomenI have seen in there occasionally, but rarely, at prayer; stillit is not uncommon to see a group of poor women resting ina quiet corner, perhaps sewing or talking in low voices. Theoutward steps and open courts are refuges for the poor, thefriendless, the lazy, and the tired. Especially the old anddecaying mosques, do the poor frequent. There about thefountains, the children play, and under the stately colonnadesthe men sleep and the women knit and sew. These housesof God are for the weary as well as for the pious or therepentant.The mosques are all much alike. We enter by a few or bya flight of steps from the street into a large paved court,open to the sky, and surrounded by colonnades. Thereis a fountain in the center, a round or octagonal structure ofcarved stone, usually with a fanciful wooden roof; fromfaucets in the exterior, water runs into a surrounding stoneINTERIOR OF A MOSQUE. 81basin about which the worshippers crouch to perform theablutions before prayer. At one side of the court is theentrance to the mosque, covered by a curtain. Pushing thisaside you are in a spacious room lighted from above, perhapswith a dome, the roof supported by columns rising to elegantarches. You will notice also the peculiar Arabic bracketingwork, called by architects " pendentive," fitting the angles andthe transitions from the corners below to the dome. Indecaying mosques, where the plaster has fallen, revealing theround stick frame-work of this bracketing, the perishablecharacter of Saracenic ornament is apparent.The walls are plain, with the exception of gilded textsfrom the Koran. Above, on strings extending across theroom are little lamps, and very often hundreds of ostricheggs are suspended. These eggs are almost always seen inCoptic and often in Greek churches. What they signify I donot know, unless the ostrich, which can digest old iron, is asymbol of the credulity that can swallow any tradition.Perhaps her eggs represent the great " cosmic egg" whichmodern philosophers are trying to teach (if we may beallowed the expression) their grandmothers to suck.The stone pavement is covered with matting and perhapswith costly rugs from Persia, Smyrna, and Tunis. The endtowards Mecca is raised a foot or so; in it is the prayer niche,towards which all worshippers turn, and near that is the highpulpit with its narrow steps in front; a pulpit of marble carved,or of wood cut in bewildering arabesque, and inlaid with pearl.The oldest mosque in Cairo is Ahmed ebn e' Tooloon, built in879 A. D. , and on the spot where, according to a tradition(of how high authority I do not know) , Abraham was preventedfrom offering up his son by the appearance of a ram. Themodern name of this hill is, indeed, Kalat-el- Kebsh, the Citadelof the Ram. I suppose the tradition is as well based as is thebelief of Moslems that it was Ishmael and not Isaac whose lifewas spared. The center of this mosque is an open court,surrounded by rows of fine columns, five deep on the East side;and what gives it great interest is the fact that the columns all 682 ORIENTAL pointed arches, and exceedingly graceful ones, with aslight curve of the horse-shoe at the base. These arches wereconstructed about three centuries before the introduction of thepointed arch into Europe; their adoption in Europe wasprobably one of the results of the Crusades.In this same court I saw an old Nebk tree, which grows onthe spot where the ark of Noah is said to have rested after itsvoyage. This goes to show, if it goes to show anything, that theFlood was " general " enough to reach Egypt.The mosque of Sultan Hassan, notwithstanding its ruined andshabby condition, is the finest specimen of pure Arabic architecture in the city; and its lofty and ornamented porch is, Ithink, as fine as anything of its kind in the world. One mayprofitably spend hours in the study of its exquisite details . Ioften found myself in front of it, wondering at the poeticinvention and sensitiveness to the beautiful in form, whichenabled the builders to reach the same effects that their Gothicsuccessors only produced by the aid of images and suggestionsdrawn from every department of nature.We ascend the high steps, pass through some dilapidatedparts of the building, which are inhabited, and come to thethreshold. Here the Moslem removes his shoes, or streetslippers, and carries them in his hand. Over this sill we maynot step, shod as we are. An attendant is ready, however, withbig slippers which go on over our shoes. Eager, bright littleboys and girls put them on for us, and then attend us in themosque, keeping a close watch that the slippers are not shuffledoff. When one does get off, leaving the unholy shoe to touchthe ground, they affect a sort of horror and readjust it with alaugh. Even the children are beginning to feel the generalrelaxation of bigotry. To-day the heels of my shoes actuallytouch the floor at every step, a transgression which the little girlwho is leading me by the hand points out with a sly shake ofthe head. The attention of this pretty little girl looks likeaffection, but I know by sad experience that it means " backsheesh. " It is depressing to think that her natural, sweet,coquettish ways mean only that. She is fierce if any other girlDEVOTIONAL WASHING. 83seeks to do me the least favor, and will not permit my owndevotion to her to wander.The mosque of Sultan Hassan was built in the fourteenth century, and differs from most others. Its great, open court has asquare recess on each side, over which is a noble arch; the eastone is very spacious, and is the place of prayer. Behind this,in an attached building, is the tomb of Hassan; lights arealways burning over it, and on it lies a large copy of the Koran.When we enter, there are only a few at their devotions, thoughthere are several groups enjoying the serenity of the court;picturesque groups, all color and rags! In a far corner an oldman is saying his prayers and near him a negro, perhaps a slave,also prostrates himself. At the fountain are three or four menpreparing for devotion; and indeed the prayers begin with thewashing. The ablution is not a mere form with these soiledlaborers-though it does seem a hopeless task for men of thecolor of these to scrub themselves. They bathe the head, neck,breast, hands and arms, legs and feet; in fact, they take whatmight be called a fair bath in any other country. In our sightthis is simply a wholesome " wash "; to them it is both cleanlinessand religion, as we know, for Mr. Lane has taught us what thatbrown man in the blue gown is saying. It may help us tounderstand his acts if we transcribe a few of his ejacul*tions.When he washes his face, he says:-" O God whiten my facewith thy light, on the day when thou shalt whiten the faces ofthy favorites; and do not blacken my face, on the day whenThou shalt blacken the faces of thine enemies. " Washing hisright arm, he entreats:-"O God, give me my book in my righthand; and reckon with me with an easy reckoning. " Passinghis wetted hand over his head under his raised turban, he says:-"O God, cover me with thy mercy, and pour down thy blessingupon me; and shade me under the shadow of thy canopy, onthe day when there shall be no shade but its shade."


One of the most striking entreaties is the prayer upon washingthe right foot:-" O God, make firm my feet upon the Sirát, onthe day when feet shall slip upon it . " " Es Sirát " is the bridge,which extends over the midst of Hell, finer than a hair and84 AN IMAM'S SUPPLICATIONS.sharper than the edge of a sword, over which all must pass, andfrom which the wicked shall fall into Hell.In these mosques order and stillness always reign, and thedevotions are conducted with the utmost propriety, whetherthere are single worshippers, or whether the mosque is filledwith lines of gowned and turbaned figures prostrating themselvesand bowing with one consent. But, much stress as the Moslemslay upon prayer, they say that they do not expect to reachParadise by that, or by any merit of their own, but only by faithand forgiveness. This is expressed frequently both in prayersand in the sermons on Friday. A sermon by an Imam of aCairo mosque contains these implorings:-"O God! unloose thecaptivity of the captives, and annul the debts of the debtors;and make this town to be safe and secure, and blessed withwealth and plenty, and all the towns of the Moslems, O Lord ofthe beings of the whole earth. And decree safety and health tous and to all travelers, and pilgrims, and warriors, and wanderers,upon thy earth, and upon thy sea, such as are Moslems, O Lordof the beings of the whole world. O Lord, we have actedunjustly towards our own souls, and if Thou do not forgive usand be merciful unto us, we shall surely be of those who perish.I beg of God, the Great, that He may forgive me and you, andall the people of Mohammed, the servants of God."


THE ancient Egyptians of the Upper Country excavated sepulchres for their great dead in the solid rocks of the mountain; the dwellers in the lower country built a mountain of stone in which to hide the royal mummy. In the necropolis at Thebes there are the vast rock-tombs of the kings; at Sakkara and Geezeh stand the Pyramids. On the upper Nile isolated rocks and mountains cut the sky in pyramidal forms; on the lower Nile the mountain ranges run level along the horizon, and the constructed pyramids relieve the horizontal lines which are otherwise unbroken except by the palms.

The rock-tombs were walled up and their entrances concealedas much as possible, by a natural arrangement of masses ofrock; the pyramids were completely encased and the openingsperfectly masked. False passages, leading through gorgeouslycarved and decorated halls and chambers to an empty pit ora blind wall, were hewn in the rock-tombs, simply to misleadthe violator of the repose of the dead as to the position of themummy. The entrance to the pyramids is placed away fromthe center, and misleading passages run from it, conductingthe explorer away from the royal sarcophagus. Rock-tomband pyramid were for the same purpose, the eternal securityofthe mummy.That purpose has failed; the burial-place was on too granda scale, its contents were too tempting. There is no securityfor any one after death but obscurity; to preserve one's body8586 THE MUMMY'S to lose it. The bones must be consumed if they would besafe, or else the owner of them must be a patriot and gain a forgotten grave. There is nothing that men so enjoy as digging up the bones of their ancestors. It is doubtful if even the Egyptian plunderers left long undisturbed the great tombs which contained so much treasure; and certainly the Persians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Saracens, left comparatively little for the scientific grave-robbers of our excellent age. They did, however, leave the tombs, the sarcophagi, most of the sculptures, and a fair share of the preserved dead. But time made a pretty clean sweep of the mummy and nearly all his personal and real property. The best sculptures of his tomb might legally be considered in the nature of improvements attaching themselves to the realty, but our scientists have hacked them off and carried them away as if they were personal estate. We call the Arabs thieves and ghouls who prowl in the the tombs in search of valuables. But motive is everything; digging up the dead and taking his property, tomb and all, in the name of learning and investigation is respectable and commendable. It comes to the same thing for the mummy, however, this being turned out of house and home in his old age. The deed has its comic aspect, and it seems to me that if a mummy has any humor left in his dried body, he must smile to see what a ludicrous failure were his costly efforts at concealment and repose. For there is a point where frustration of plans may be so sweeping as to be amusing; just as the mummy himself is so ghastly that his aspect is almost funny.

Nothing more impresses the mind with the antiquity ofEgypt than its vast cemeteries, into which the harvests of thedead have been gathered for so many thousands of years. Ofold Memphis, indeed, nothing remains except its necropolis,whose monuments have outlasted the palaces and templesthat were the wonder of the world. The magnificence of thecity can be estimated by the extent of its burial-ground.On the west side of the Nile, opposite Cairo, and extendingsouth along the edge of the desert, is a nearly continuousTHE OLDEST MONUMENT IN THE WORLD. 87necropolis for fifteen miles. It is marked at intervals bypyramids. At Geezeh are three large and several small ones;at Abooseer are four; at Sakkara are eleven; at Dashoorare four. These all belonged to the necropolis of Memphis.At Geezeh is the largest, that of Cheops or Shoofoo, the thirdking of the fourth dynasty, reigning at Memphis about 4235B. C. , according to the chronology of Mariette Bey, which everynew discovery helps to establish as the most probably correct.This pyramid was about four hundred and eighty feet high,and the length of a side of its base was about seven hundredand sixty-four feet; it is now four hundred and fifty feethigh and its base line is seven hundred and forty- six feet. Itis big enough yet for any practical purpose. The oldpyramid at Sakkara is believed to have been built byQuenephes, the fourth king of the first dynasty, and to be theoldest monument in the world. Like the mounds of theChaldeans, it is built in degrees or stages, of which there arefive. Degraded now and buried at the base in its ownrubbish, it rises only about one hundred and ninety feet abovethe ground.It is a drive of two hours from Cairo to the Pyramids ofGeezeh, over a very good road; and we are advised to go bycarriage. Hadji is on the seat with the driver, keeping hissingle twinkling eye active in the service of the howadji.The driver is a polished Nubian, with a white turban and awhite gown; feet and legs go bare. You wouldn't call it astylish turnout for the Bois, but it would be all right if wehad a gorgeous saïs to attract attention from ourselves.We drive through the wide and dusty streets of the newquarter. The barrack-like palace, onthe left of a broad place,is the one in which the Khedive is staying just now, thoughhe may be in another one to-night. The streets are the sameanimated theater-like scenes of vivid color and picturesquecostume and indolent waiting on Providence to which wethought we should never become accustomed, but whichare already beginning to lose their novelty. The fellaheenare coming in to market, trudging along behind donkeys and88 THE KHEDIVE'S SUMMER PALACES.camels loaded with vegetables or freshly cut grass and beansfor fodder. Squads of soldiers in white uniform pass; buglenotes are heard from Kasr e' Neel, a barrack of troops onthe river. Here, as in Europe, the great business mostseriously pursued is the drilling of men to stand straight,handle arms, roll their eyes, march with a thousand legsmoving as one, and shoot on sight other human beings whohave learned the same tricks. God help us, it is a pitifulthing for civilized people.The banks of the Nile here above Boolak are high andsteep. We cross the river on a fine bridge of iron, and driveover the level plain, opposite, on a raised and windingembankment. This is planted on each side with lebbekh andsycamore trees. Part of the way the trees are large and theshade ample; the roots going down into moist ground.Much of the way the trees are small and kept alive byconstant watering. On the right, by a noble avenue areapproached the gardens and the palace of Gezeereh. Wepass by the new summer palace of Geezeh. Other large onesare in process of construction. If the viceroy is measured fora new suit of clothes as often as he orders a new palace, histailors must be kept busy. Through the trees we see greenfields, intersected with ditches, wheat, barley, and beans, thelatter broad-sown and growing two to three feet high; hereand there are lines of palms, clumps of acacias; peasants areat work or asleep in the shade; there are trains of camels,and men plowing with cows or buffaloes. Leaving thesqualid huts that are the remains of once beautiful Geezeh,the embankment strides straight across the level country.And there before us, on a rocky platform a hundred feethigher than the meadows, are the pyramids, cutting thestainless blue of the sky with their sharp lines. They masterthe eye when we are an hour away, and as we approach theyseem to recede, neither growing larger nor smaller, butsimply withdrawing with a grand reserve.I suppose there are more " emotions " afloat about thepyramids than concerning any other artificial objects. ThereENDURING MONUMENTS. 89are enough. It becomes constantly more and more difficultfor the ordinary traveler to rise to the height of these accumulated emotions, and it is entirely impossible to say how muchthe excitement one experiences on drawing near them resultsfrom reading and association, and how much is due to thesesimple forms in such desolate surroundings. But there theystand, enduring standards, and every visitor seems inclined tomeasure his own height by their vastness, in telling whatimpression they produce upon him. They have been treatedsentimentally, off-handedly, mathematically, solemnly, historically, humorously. They yield to no sort of treatment. Theyare nothing but piles of stone, and shabby piles at that, and theystand there to astonish people. Mr. Bayard Taylor is entirelyright when he says that the pyramids are and will remainunchanged and unapproachably impressive however modernlife may surge about them, and though a city should creep about their bases.Perhaps they do not appear so gigantic when the visitor isclose to them as he thought they would from their mass at adistance. But if he stands at the base of the great pyramid,and casts his eye along the steps of its enormous side and upthe dizzy height where the summit seems to pierce the solidblue, he will not complain of want of size . And if he walksaround one, and walks from one to another wading in the loosesand and under a midday sun, his respect for the pyramidswill increase every moment.Long before we reach the ascent of the platform we are metby Arab boys and men, sellers of antiquities, and most persistentbeggars. The antiquities are images of all sorts, of gods, beasts,and birds, in pottery or in bronze, articles from tombs, bits ofmummy-cloth, beads and scarabæi, and Roman copper coins;all of them at least five thousand years old in appearance.Our carriage is stuck in the sand, and we walk a quarter of amile up the platform, attended by a rabble of coaxing, imploring,importunate, half-clad Bedaween. " Look a here, you take dis;dis ver much old, he from mummy; see here, I get him in90 THE BEDAWEEN OF THE PYRAMIDS.tomb; one shillin; in Cairo you get him one pound; ver sheap.You no like? No anteeka, no money. How much? ""One penny. "" Ah," ironically, "ket '-ther kháyrak (much obliged) . Youtake him sixpence. Howadji, say, me guide, you want go toppyramid, go inside, go Sphinkee, allee tomba?99Surrounded by an increasing swarm of guides and antiquityhawkers, and beset with offers, entreaties, and opportunities, wecome face to face with the great pyramid. The ground in frontof it is piled high with its débris. Upon these rocks, inpicturesque attitudes, some in the shade and some in the sun,others of the tribe are waiting the arrival of pyramid climbers;in the intense light their cotton garments and turbans are likewhite paint, brilliant in the sun, ashy in the shadow. All theshadows are sharp and deep. A dark man leaning on his spearat the corner of the pyramid makes a picture. At a kiosk nearby carriages are standing and visitors are taking their lunch.But men, carriages, kiosk, are dwarfed in this great presence.It is, as I said, a shabby pile of stone, and its beauty is onlythat of mathematical angles; but then it is so big, it casts sucha shadow; we all beside it are like the animated lines and dotswhich represent human beings in the etchings of Callot.To be rid of importunities we send for the sheykh of thepyramid tribe. The Bedaween living here have a sort ofownership ofthese monuments, and very good property they are.The tribe supports itself mainly by tolls levied upon visitors.The sheykh assigns guides and climbers, and receives the payfor their services. This money is divided among the families;but what individuals get as backsheesh or by the sale ofantiquities, they keep. They live near by, in huts scarcely.distinguishable from the rocks, many of them in vacant tombs,and some have shanties on the borders of the green land . Mostof them have the appearance of wretched poverty, and villainousfaces abound. But handsome, intelligent faces and finelydeveloped forms are not rare, either.The Sheykh, venerable as Jacob, respectable as a NewEngland deacon, suave and polite as he traditionally should be,OUR GUIDE. 91wears a scarf of camel's hair and a bright yellow and blackkuffia, put on like a hood, fastened about the head by a cordand falling over the shoulders. He apportioned his guides totake us up the pyramid and to accompany us inside. I hadalready sent for a guide who had been recommended to me inthe city, and I found Ali Gobree the frank, manly, intelligent,quiet man I had expected, handsome also, and honesty andsincerity beaming from his countenance. How well-bred hewas, and how well he spoke English . Two other men weregiven me; for the established order is that two shall pull andone shall push the visitor up. And it is easier to submit to theregulation than to attempt to go alone and be followed by animportunate crowd.I am aware that every one who writes of the pyramids isexpected to make a scene of the ascent, but if I were to romanceI would rather do it in a fresher field. The fact is that theascent is not difficult, unless the person is very weak in thelegs or attempts to carry in front of himself a preposterousstomach. There is no difficulty in going alone; occasionallythe climber encounters a step from three to four feet high, buthe can always flank it. Of course it is tiresome to go up- stairs,and the great pyramid needs an “ elevator "; but a person mayleisurely zig- zag up the side without great fatigue. We wentstraight up at one corner; the guides insisting on taking me bythe hand; the boosting Arab who came behind earned hismoney by grunting every time we reached a high step, but hedidn't lift a pound.We stopped frequently to look down and to measure with theeye the mass on the surface of which we were like flies. Whenwe were a third of the way up, and turned from the edge to themiddle, the height to be climbed seemed as great as when westarted. I should think that a giddy person might haveunpleasant sensations in looking back along the corner andseeing no resting-place down the sharp edges of the steps shortofthe bottom, if he should fall. We measure our ascent by thediminishing size of the people below, and by the widening ofthe prospect. The guides are perfectly civil, they do not92 AT THE SUMMIT OF THE PYRAMID.threaten to throw us off, nor do they even mention backsheesh.Stopping to pick out shells from the nummulitic limestoneblocks or to try our glasses on some distant object, we comeeasily to the summit in a quarter of an hour.The top, thirty feet square, is strewn with big blocks of stoneand has a flag-staff. Here ambitious people sometimes breakfast.Arabs are already here with koollehs of water and antiquities.When the whole party arrives the guides set up a perfunctorycheer; but the attempt to give an air of achievement to ourclimbing performance and to make it appear that we are thefirst who have ever accomplished the feat, is a failure. We sitdown upon the blocks and look over Egypt, as if we wereused to this sort of thing at home.All that is characteristic of Egypt is in sight; to the west, theLibyan hills and the limitless stretch of yellow desert sand; tothe north, desert also and the ruined pyramid of Abooroásh;to the south, that long necropolis of the desert marked bythepyramids of Abooseér, Sakkarah, and Dashoor; on the east, theNile and its broad meadows widening into the dim Deltanorthward, the white line of Cairo under the Mokattam hills,and the grey desert beyond. Egypt is a ribbon of greenbetween two deserts. Canals and lines of trees stripe the greenof the foreground; white sails flicker southward along the river,winging their way to Nubia; the citadel and its mosque shine inthe sun.An Arab offers to run down the side of this pyramid, climbthe second one, the top of which is still covered with theoriginal casing, and return in a certain incredible number ofminutes. We decline, because we don't like to have a half- cladArab thrust his antics between us and the contemplation ofdead yet mighty Egypt. We regret our refusal afterwards, forthere is nothing people like to read about so much as facts ofthis sort. Humanity is more interesting than stones.convinced that if Martha Rugg had fallen off the pyramidinstead of the rock at Niagara Falls, people would have lookedat the spot where she fell and up at the stairs she came bobbingdown with more interest than at the pyramid itself. Nevertheless,HADJI'S OPINION. 93this Arab or another did, while we were there, climb the secondpyramid like a monkey; he looked only a black speck on its side.That accidents sometimes happen on the pyramids, I gatherfrom the conversation of Hadji, who is full of both informationand philosophy to-day."Sometime man, he fool, he go up. Man say, ' go this way.'Fool, he say, ' let me lone. ' Umbrella he took him, threw himoff; he dead in hundred pieces."As to the selling of Scarabæi to travelers, Hadji inclines to theside of the poor:-" Good one, handsome one, one pound.Not good for much—but what to do? Gentleman he want it;man he want the money. "For Murray's Guide- Book he has not more respect thanguides usually have who have acted as interpreters in thecollection of information for it. For " interpret " Hadji alwayssays " spell.""When the Murray come here I spell it to the man, the manto Murray and him put it down. He don't know anythingbefore. He told me, what is this? I told him what it is.Something," with a knowing nod, " be new after Murray. Lookhere, Murray very old now."Hadji understands why the cost of living has gone up somuch in Egypt. " He was very sheap; now very different,dearer because plenty people. I build a house, another peoplebuild a house, and another people, he build a house. Plentymen to work, make it dear. " I have never seen Hadji'sdwelling, but it is probably of the style of those that he callswhen in the street we ask him what a specially shabby mud-wallwith a ricketty door in it is—" a brivate house. "About the Great Pyramid has long waged an archæologicalwar. Years have been spent in studying it, measuring it insideand outside, drilling holes into it, speculating why this stone isin one position and that in another, and constructing theoriesabout the purpose for which it was built. Books have beenwritten on it, diagrams of all its chambers and passages, withaccurate measurements of every stone in them, are printed. IfI had control of a restless genius who was dangerous to the94 EXPLORATION UNder difFICULTIES.peace of society, I would set him at the Great Pyramid, certainthat he would have occupation for a lifetime and never come toany useful result. The interior has peculiarities, which distinguish it from all other pyramids; and many think that it wasnot intended for a sepulchre mainly; but that it was erected forastronomical purposes, or as a witness to the true north, east,south, and west, or to serve as a standard of measure; not onlyhas the passage which descends obliquely three hundred andtwenty feet from the opening into the bed-rock, and permits aview of the sky from that depth, some connection with theobservation of Sirius and the fixing of the Sothic year; not onlyis the porphyry sarcophagus that is in the King's Chamber,secure from fluctuations of temperature, a fixed standard ofmeasure; but the positions of various stones in the passages(stones which certainly are stumbling-blocks to everybody whobegins to think why they are there) are full of a mystic andeven religious signification. It is most restful, however, tothe mind to look upon this pyramid as a tomb, and that itwas a sepulchre like all the others is the opinion of mostscholars.Whatever it was, it is a most unpleasant place to go into.But we wanted one idea of Cimmerian darkness, and thesensation of being buried alive, and we didn't like to tella lie when asked if we had been in, and therefore we went.You will not understand where we went without a diagram,and you never will have any idea of it until you go. We,with a guide for each person, light candles, and slide andstumble down the incline; we crawl up an incline; we shufflealong a level passage that seems interminable, backs andknees bent double till both are apparently broken, and thetorture of the position is almost unbearable; we get up theGreat Gallery, a passage over a hundred and fifty feet long,twenty-eight high, and seven broad, and about as easy toascend as a logging- sluice, crawl under three or four portcullises, and emerge, dripping with perspiration and coveredwith dust, into the king's chamber, a room thirty- four feetlong, seventeen broad, and nineteen high. It is built ofFIVE THOUSAND YEARS OF NIGHT. 95magnificent blocks of syenite, polished and fitted togetherperfectly, and contains the lidless sarcophagus.Ifit were anywhere else and decently lighted, it would be astylish apartment; but with a dozen torches and candlessmoking in it and heating it, a lot of perspiring Arabs shoutingand kicking up a dust, and the feeling that the weight of thesuperincumbent mass was upon us, it seemed to me too smalland confined even for a tomb. The Arabs thought they oughtto cheer here as they did on top; we had difficulty in drivingthem all out and sending the candles with them, in order thatwe might enjoy the quiet and blackness of this retiredsituation . I suppose we had for once absolute night, a roomfull of the original Night, brother of Chaos, night bottled upfor four or five thousand years, the very night in which oldCheops lay in a frightful isolation, with all the portcullisesdown and the passages sealed with massive stones.Out of this blackness the eye even by long waiting couldn'tget a ray; a cat's eye would be invisible in it. Some scholarsthink that Cheops never occupied this sarcophagus. I canunderstand his feeling if he ever came in here alive. I thinkhe may have gone away and put up " TO LET " on the door.We scrambled about a good deal in this mountain, visited theso-called Queen's Chamber, entered by another passage, belowthe King's, lost all sense of time and of direction, and came out,glad to have seen the wonderful interior, but welcoming theburst of white light and the pure air, as if we were being bornagain. To remain long in that gulf of mortality is to experiencesomething of the mystery of death.Ali Gobree had no antiquities to press upon us, but he couldshow us some choice things in his house, if we would go there.Besides, his house would be a cool place in which to eat ourlunch. We walked thither, a quarter of a mile down thesand slope onthe edge of the terrace. We had been wanderingwhere the Sphinx was, expecting it to be as conspicuous almostas the Pyramids. Suddenly, turning a sand-hill, we came uponit, the rude lion's body struggling out of the sand, the humanhead lifted up in that stiff majesty which we all know.96 THE MYSTERIOUS SPHINX.So little of the body is now visible, and the features are somuch damaged that it is somewhat difficult to imagine whatimpression this monstrous union of beast and man once produced,when all the huge proportions stood revealed, and color gavea startling life- likeness to that giant face. It was cut from therock of the platform; its back was patched with pieces of sandstone to make the contour; its head was solid. It was approachedby flights of stairs descending, and on the paved platform whereit stood were two small temples; between its paws was a sort ofsanctuary, with an altar. Now, only the back, head and neck areabove the drifting sand. Traces of the double crown of Upperand Lower Egypt which crowned the head are seen on the forehead, but the crown has gone. The kingly beard that hungfrom the chin has been chij ped away. The vast wig-the falsemass ofhair that encumbered the shaven heads ofthe Egyptians,living or dead-still stands out on either side the head, andadds a certain dignity. In spite of the broken condition ofthe face, with the nose gone, it has not lost its character. Thereare the heavy eyebrows, the prominent cheek-bones, the fulllips, the poetic chin, the blurred but on-looking eyes. I thinkthe first feeling of the visitor is that the face is marred beyondrecognition, but the sweep of the majestic lines soon becomesapparent; it is not difficult to believe that there is a smile onthe sweet mouth, and the stony stare of the eyes, once caught,will never be forgotten.The Sphinx, grossly symbolizing the union of physical andintellectual force, and hinting at one of those recondite mysteries which we still like to believe existed in the twilight ofmankind, was called Hor-em- Khoo (" the Sun in his restingplace "), and had divine honors paid to it as a deity.This figure, whatever its purpose, is older than the Pyramid ofCheops. It has sat facing the east, on the edge of this terrace oftombs, expecting the break of day, since a period that is lost inthe dimness of tradition. All the achievements of the race, ofwhich we know anything, have been enacted since that figurewas carved. It has seen, if its stony eyes could see, all the procession of history file before it. Viewed now at a little distance orDOMESTIC LIFE IN A TOMB. 97with evening shadows on it, its features live again, and it has thecalmness, the simple majesty that belong to high art. Old writerssay that the face was once sweet and beautiful. How long hadthat unknown civilization lasted before it produced this art?Why should the Sphinx face the rising sun? Why does itstand in a necropolis like a sleepy warden of the dead whosleep? Was it indeed the guardian of those many dead, themighty who slept in pyramids, in rock-hewn tombs, in pits,their bodies ready for any pilgrimage; and does it look to theeast expecting the resurrection?Not far from the Sphinx is a marvelous temple of syenite, whichthe sand almost buries; in a well in one of its chambers wasfound the splendid red-granite statue of Chephren, the builder ofthe second pyramid, a piece of art which succeeding ages didnot excel . All about the rock plateau are tombs, and in someof them are beautiful sculptures, upon which the coloring isfresh. The scenes depicted are of common life, the occupationsand diversions of the people, and are without any religioussignification. The admirable sculptures represent no gods andno funeral mysteries; when they were cut the Egyptiantheology was evidently not constructed.The residence of our guide is a tomb, two dry chambers in therock, the entrance closed by a wooden door. The rooms arelarge enough for tables and chairs; upon the benches where themummies have lain , are piled antique fragments of all sorts, setoffby a grinning skull or a thigh-bone; the floor is covered withfine yellow sand. I don't know how it may have seemed toits first occupant, but we found it an excellent luncheon place,and we could sleep there calmly and securely, when the doorwas shut against the jackals--though I believe it has neverbeen objected to a tomb that one couldn't sleep in it. Whilewe sip our coffee Ali brings forth his antique images and scarabæi.These are all genuine, for Ali has certificates from most of thẹwell-known Egyptologists as to his honesty and knowledge ofantiquities . We are looking for genuine ones; those offered usat the pyramids were suspicious . We say to Ali:-"We should like to get a few good scarabaei; we are entirelyཝེནཱ,798 SOUVENIRS OF ANCIENT EGYPT.ignorant of them; but we were sent to you as an honest man.You select half a dozen that you consider the best, and we willpay you a fair price; if they do not pass muster in Cairo youshall take them back. ""As you are a friend of Mr. Blank, " said Ali, evidentlypleased with the confidence reposed in him, "you shall have thebest I have, for about what they cost me."The Scarabæus is the black beetle that the traveler willconstantly see tumbling about in the sand, and rolling up balls.of dirt as he does in lands where he has not so sounding a name.He was sacred to the old Egyptians as an emblem of immortality, because he was supposed to have the power of self-production. No mummy went away into the shades of the netherworldwithout one on his breast, with spread-wings attached to it.Usually many scarabæi were buried with the mummy-severalhundreds have been found in one mummy- case. They werecut from all sorts of stones, both precious and common, andmade of limestone, or paste, hardened, glazed and baked.Some of them are exquisitely cut, the intaglio on the under sidebeing as clean, true, and polished as Greek work. The deviceson them are various; the name of a reigning or a famous king,in the royal oval, is not uncommon, and an authentic scarabæuswith a royal name is considered of most value. I saw aninsignificnt one in soft stone and of a grey color, held at ahundred pounds; it is the second one that has ever been foundwith the name of Cheops on it. The scarabaei were worn in rings,carried as charms, used as seals; there are large coarse ones ofblue pottery which seem to have been invitations to a funeral, ·by the inscriptions on them.The Scarabæus is at once the most significant and portable.souvenir of ancient Egypt that the traveler can carry away, andalthough the supply was large, it could not fill the demand.Consequently antique scarabæi are now manufactured in large.quantities at Thebes, and in other places, and distributed verywidely over the length of Egypt; the dealers have them with asprinkling of the genuine; almost every peasant can produceone from his deep pocket; the women wear them in their bosoms."BACKSHEESH! BACKSHEESH! O IIOWADZI!" 99The traveler up the Nile is pretty sure to be attacked with thefever of buying Scarabæi; he expects to happen upon one ofgreat value, which he will get for a few piastres. It is his intention to do so. The Scarabæus becomes to him the most beautiful and desirable object in the world. He sees somethingfascinating in its shape, in its hieroglyphics, however ugly itmay be to untaught eyes.Ali selected our scarabæi.the antique gems that we had expected to see, and they did notgive a high idea of the old Egyptian art. But they had amysterious history and meaning; they had shared the repose ofa mummy perhaps before Abraham departed from Ur. Wepaid for them. We paid in gold. We paid Ali for his servicesas guide. We gave him backsheesh on account of his kindnessand intelligence, besides. We said good-bye to his honest facewith regret, and hoped to see him again.They did not seem to us exactlyIt was not long before we earnestly desired to meet him .He was a most accomplished fellow, and honesty was his bestpolicy. There isn't a more agreeable Bedawee at the Pyramids;and yet Ali is a modern Egyptian, just like his scarabæi, all theThe traveler who thinks the Egyptians are not nimblewitted and clever is likely to pay for his knowledge to thecontrary. An accumulated experience of five thousand years,in one spot, is not for nothing.same.We depart from the pyramids amid a clamor of importunity; prices have fallen to zero; antiquities old as Pharaoh willbe given away; " backsheesh, backsheesh, O Howadji; " "Ihavn't any bread to mangere, I have six children; what is apiastre for eight persons? " They run after us, they hang uponthe carriage, they follow us a mile, begging, shrieking, howling,dropping off one by one, swept behind by the weight of a copperthrown to them.The shadows fall to the east; there is a lovely light on theplain; we meet long lines of camels, of donkeys, of fellaheenreturning from city and field . All the west is rosy; the pyramidsstand in a purple light; the Sphinx casts its shade on the yellowsand; its expectant eyes look beyond the Nile into the mysterious East.



WE are giving our minds to a name for our dahabeëh.The owners have desired us to christen it, and thetask is getting heavy. Whatever we are doing;guiding a donkey through the mazes of a bazaar; eatingoranges at the noon breakfast; watching the stream of colorand fantastic apparel, swaying camels and dashing haremequipage with running saïses and outriding eunuchs, flowingby the hotel; following a wedding procession in its stragglingparade, or strolling vacantly along, knocked, jostled, evadedby a dozen races in a dozen minutes and lost in the whirl,color, excitement of this perpetual masquerade, we aresuddenly struck with, " what shall we call that boat? "We want a name that is characteristic of the country andexpressive of our own feelings, poetic and not sentimental,sensible and not common-place. It seems impossible tosuggest a good name that is not already borne by a dahabeëh on the river-names such as the Lotus, the Ibis, theGazelle, Cleopatra, Zenobia, names with an Eastern flavor.And we must have not only a name for the boat, but a mottoor device for our pennant, or "distinguisher flag," as thedragoman calls the narrow fifty feet long strip of bunting thatis to stream from the forward yard. We carry at the sternthe flag of our country, but we float our individuality in theupper air. If we had been a bridal party we should of coursehave taken some such device as that of a couple who went upthe river under the simple but expressive legend of " Nestledown," written on their banner.What would you name a Nile dahabeëh?100THE SEASONS BEWITCHED. 101The days go all too rapidly for us to catch the shiftingillusions about us. It is not so much what we see of thestated sights that can be described, but it is the atmosphere inwhich we live that makes the strangeness of our existence.It is as if we had been born into another world. And theclimate is as strange as the people, the costumes, the habits,the morals. The calendar is bewitched. December is amixture of September and July. Alas, yes. There are thenight-fogs of September, and the mosquitoes of July. Youcannot tell whether the season is going backwards or forwards.But for once you are content to let Providence manage it, atleast so long as there is a north wind, and you forget that thesky has any shade other than blue.And the prophecy of the poet is realized. The nights arefilled with music, and the cares that infest the day areinvariably put off till tomorrow, in this deliciously procrastinating land. Perhaps, however, Mr. Longfellow would notbe satisfied with the music; for it seems to be the nasaldaughter of Lassitude and Monotony, ancient gods of theEast. Two or three strings stretched over a sounding skinand a parchment drum suffice to express the few notes that anArab musician commands; harmony does not enter into hisplan. Yet the people are fond of what they consider music.We hear on all sides at night the picking of strings, thethrob of the darabooka and the occasional outburst of awailing and sentimental strain. Like all barbarous music,this is always minor. When the performers are sailors orcommon strollers, it is doubtless exactly the same music thatdelighted the ancient Egyptians; even the instruments arethe same, and the method of clapping the hands in accentuation ofthe music is unchanged.There is a café chantant on our side of the open, tree- growncourt of a native hotel, in the Ezbekeëh where one mayhear a mongrel music, that is not inexpressive of both themorals and the mixed condition of Cairo to-day. Theinstruments of the band are European; the tunes played areEgyptian. When the first strain is heard we say that it is102 MONGREL MUSIC.strangely wild, a weird and plaintive minor; but that is thewhole of it. The strain is repeated over and over again for ahalf hour, as if it were ground out of a coffee- mill, in aniteration sufficient to drive the listener insane, the dissolutescraping and thumping and barbarous dissonance never changing nor ending. From time to time this is varied withsinging, of the nasal, fine-tooth- comb order, with the mostextraordinary attempts at shakes and trills, and with all theagony of a moonlit cat on a house-top. All this the graveArabs and young Egyptian rakes, who sit smoking, acceptwith entire satisfaction. Later in the evening dancing beginsand goes on with the strumming, monotonous music till atleast the call for morning prayer.In the handsome Ezbekeëh park or garden, where thereare shady walks and some fine sycamores and banyans to beseen, a military band plays every afternoon, while the foreigners of both sexes, and Egyptian men promenade. Ofcourse no Egyptian lady or woman of respectability is everseen in so public a place. In another part of the garden, moreretired, a native band is always playing at nightfall. In thissheltered spot, under the lee of some gigantic rock andgrotto-work are tables and chairs, and a divan for the band.This rock has water pleasantly running through it, but itmust have been struck by somebody besides Moses, for beeris brought out of its cool recesses, as well. Rows of men ofall colors and costumes may be seen there, with pipe andmug and coffee cup; and on settees more elevated and nextthe grotto, are always sitting veiled women, in outer wrappersof black silk, sometimes open enough to show an underskirtof bright color and feet in white slippers. These womencall for beer or something stronger, and smoke like the men;they run no risk in being in this publicity, for they havenothing to lose here or elsewhere. Opposite them on a raiseddivan, not unlike a roomy bedstead, sits the band.It is the most disreputable of bands. Nothing in the wholeEast so expressed to me its fa*gged-out dissoluteness as thisband and its performances. It is a sleepy, nonchalant band,NATIVE LOVE-SONGS. 103as if it had been awake all the previous night; some of itsmembers are blear- eyed, some have one eye, some have two;they are in turbans, in tarbooshes, in gowns of soiled silk, ofblue cotton, of white drilling. It is the feeblest band; andyet it is subject to spurts of bacchantic fervor. Sometimes allthe instruments are striving together, and then only one ortwo dribble the monotonous refrain; but somehow, with allthe stoppings to light cigarettes and sip coffee, the tune is keptgroaning on, in a minor that is as wild as the desert andsuggestive of sin.The instruments are as African as the sunrise. There isthe darabooka, a drum made of an earthen or wooden cylinderwith a flaring head, over which is stretched a parchment; thetár, a kind of tambourine; kemengeh, a viol of two strings,with a cocoa- nut sounding-body; the kanoon, an instrumentof strings held on the knees, and played with the fingers; theood, a sort ofguitar with seven double strings; played with aplectrum, a slip of vultures' feather held between the thumband finger; and the ndy, a reed-flute blown at the end.In the midst of the thumbing and scraping, a rakish youthat the end, is liable, at any moment, to throw back his headand break out in a soft womanish voice, which may go nofarther than a nasal yah, ah, m-a- r-r, that appears to satisfy hisyearnings; or it may expand into a droning song, “ Yá benátIskendereeyeh," like that which Mr. Lane renders:—"Oye damsels of Alexandria!Your walk over the furniture is alluring:Ye wear the Kashmeer shawl with embroidered work,And your lips are sweet as sugar. "Below the divan sit some idlers or supernumeraries, who,as inclination moves them, mark the rhythm by striking thepalms of the hands together, or cry out a prolonged ah-yah,but always in a forgetful, uninterested manner, and thensubside into silence, while the picking and throbbing of thedemoralized tune goes on. It is the " devilish iteration " of it,I think, that steals away the senses; this, and some occult immorality in the debased tune, that blots virtue out of the101 THE HOWLING Yet there is something comic in these blinking owlsof the night, giving sentimental tongue to the poetic imageryof the Eastern love-song-"for a solitary gazelle has takenaway my soul ";" The beloved came to me with a vacillating gait;And her eyelids were the cause of my intoxication.I extended my hand to take the cup;And was intoxicated by her eyes.O thou in the rose-colored dress! O thou in the rose-colored dress!Beloved of my heart! remain with me. "Or he pipes to the " dark- complexioned, and with twowhite roses ":-" O damsel! thy silk shirt is worn out, and thine arms have become visible,And I fear for thee, on account of the blackness of thine eyes.I desire to intoxicate myself, and kiss thy cheeks,And do deeds that ' Antar did not. "To all of which the irresponsible chorus, swaying its head,responds O! y-a-a-a- h! And the motley audience sips andsmokes; the veiled daughters of sin flash invitation from theirkohl-stained eyes; and the cool night comes after the flaringheat of the day; and all things are as they have been forthousands of years. It is time to take you to somethingreligious.The Howling Derweeshes are the most active religionistsin the East; I think they spend more force in devotion thanthe Whirling Derwceshes, though they are probably notmore meritorious. They exceed our own western " Jumpers,"and by contrast make the worship of our dancing Shakerstame and worldly. Of all the physical manifestations ofreligious feeling there is none more warming than the zikr ofthese devotees. The derweeshes are not all wanderers, beggars, saints in patched garments and filthy skin; perhaps themost of those who belong to one of the orders pursue someregular occupation; they are fishermen, laborers in the fields,artisans, and water-carriers, and only occasionally join in theceremonies, processions and zikrs of their faith. I have seenAN EXCITING PERFORMANCE. 105a laborer drop into the ring, take his turn at a zikr, and dropout again, very much as the western man happens in andtakes a hand in a " free fight, " and then retires.This mosque at which the Howling Derweeshes perform iscircular, and large enough to admit a considerable number ofspectators, who sit, or stand against the wall. Since theexercise is one of the sights of the metropolis, and strangersare expected, it has a little the air of a dress-parade, and Icould not but fear that the devotion lost somewhat of itssingleness of purpose. When we enter, about forty menstand in an oblong ring facing each other; the ring is opentowards the mehhráb, or niche which marks the direction ofМесса. In the opening stands the Sheykh, to direct theperformance; and at his left are seated the musicians.The derweeshes have divested themselves of turbans, fezes,outer gowns and slippers, which lie in a heap in the middle ofthe circle, an indistinguishable mass of old clothes, from whichwhen the owners come to draw they cannot fail to get as goodas they deposited. The ceremony begins with a little uneasinesson the part of the musical instruments; the sheykh bows hishead and brings the palms of his hands together; and thederweeshes, standing close together, with their hands straight attheir sides, begin slowly to bow and to sway to the right in acompound motion which is each time extended. The darabooka is beaten softly and the ' ood is picked to a slow measure.As the worshippers sway, they chant, Lá iláha illa-lláh (“ Thereis no deity but God ") in endless repetition, and imperceptiblyquickening the enunciation as they bow more rapidly. Themusic gets faster, and now and again one of the roguish boyswho is thumping the drum breaks out into vocal expression ofhis piety or of his hilarity. The circle is now under full swing,the bowings are lower and much more rapid, and the ejacul*tion.has become merely Alláh, Alláh, Allah, with a strong stress on the final syllable.The peculiarities of the individual performers begin to comeout. Some only bow and swing in a perfunctory manner;others throw their strength into the performance, and their106 FRENZIED WORSHIPPERS.excitement is evinced by the working of the face and the rollingof the eyes. Many of them have long hair, which has evidentlyknown neither scissors nor comb for years, and is matted andtwisted in a hopeless tangle. One of the most conspicuous andthe least clad, a hairy man of the desert, is , exactly in apparel andfeatures, like the conventional John the Baptist. His enormousshock of faded brown hair is two feet long and its ends aredyed yellow with henna. When he bends forward his hairsweeps the floor, and when he throws his head back the masswhips over with a swish through the air. The most devoutperson, however, is a negro, who puts all the fervor ofthe tropicsinto his exercise. His ejacul*tions are rolled out with extraordinary volume, and his black skin shines with moisture; thereis, too, in his swaying and bowing, an abandon, a laxity ofmuscles, and a sort of jerk that belong only to his sympatheticrace.The exercise is every moment growing more rapid, but inregular increments, as the music hastens-five minutes, tenminutes, fifteen minutes-until there is a very high pressure on,the revolutions of the cylinder are almost one in two seconds,and the piston moves quicker and quicker. The music, however,is not louder, only more intense, and now and then the reedflute executes a little obligato, a plaintive strain, that stealsinto the frenzy like the note of a lost bird, sweet as love and sadas death. The performers are now going so rapidly that theycan only ejacul*te one syllable, ' lah, ' lah, 'lah, which is aspiratedin a hoarse voice every time the head is flung forward to thefloor. The hands are now at liberty, and swing with the body,or are held palm to palm before the face. The negro cannotlonger contain himself but breaks occasionally into a shrill"hoo! " He and two or three others have " the power," andare not far from an epiliptic fit.There is a limit, however, to the endurance of the body; theswaying has become so rapid that it is difficult to distinguishfaces, and it is impossible for the performers to repeat even asyllable of the name of Allah; all they can do is to push outfrom the depths of the lungs a vast hoarse aspiration of la-a- h,THE DESCENDANTS OF THE PROPHET. 107which becomes finally a gush exactly like the cut-off of a steamengine, short and quick.The end has nearly come; in vain the cymbals clang, in vainthe drum is beaten harder, and the horn calls to quicker work.The limit is reached, and while the reed expresses its plaintivefear, the speed slackens, the steam puffs are slower, and with anirregular hoo! from the colored brother, the circle stands still .You expect to see them sink down exhausted. Not a bit ofit. One or two having had enough of it, take their clothes andwithdraw, and their places are filled by others and by somevery sensible-looking men, trades- people evidently. After ashort rest they go through the same or a similar performance,and so on for an hour and a half, the variations being mainly inthe chanting. At the end, each derweesh affectionately embracesthe Sheykh, kisses his hand without servility, resumes hisgarments and quietly withdraws. They seem to have enjoyedthe exercise, and certainly they had plenty of it. I shouldlike to know what they think of us, the infidel spectators, whogo to look at their religious devotions as if they were a play.That derweesh beggar in a green turban is by that token ashereef, or descendant of the Prophet. No one but a shereefis allowed to wear the green turban. The shereefs are in allranks of society, many of them wretched paupers and in themost menial occupations; the title is inherited from eitherparent and the representatives of the race have become common.Some who are entitled to the green turban wear the whiteinstead, and prefer to be called Seyd (master or lord) insteadof Shereef. Such a man is Seyd Sadat, the most conspicousrepresentative ofthe family of the Prophet in Cairo. His ancestors for a long period were the trustees of the funds of all thegreat mosques of Cairo, and consequently handled an enormousrevenue and enjoyed great power. These millions of incomefrom the property of the mosques the Khedive has diverted tohis own purposes by the simple process of making himself theirtrustee. Thus the secular power interferes every few centuries,in all countries, with the accumulation of property in religioushouses. The strict Moslems think with the devout Catholics,that it is an impious interference.108 AN ANCIENT SARACENIC HOUSE.Seyd Sadat lives in the house that his family have occupiedfor over eight centuries! It is perhaps the best and richestspecimen of Saracenic domestic architecture now standing inthe East. This house, or collection of houses and disconnectedrooms opening upon courts and gardens, is in some portions ofit in utter decay; a part, whose elegant arches and marvelouscarvings in stone, with elaborate hanging balconies and paintedrecesses, are still studies of beauty, is used as a stable. Theinhabited rooms of the house are tiled two-thirds of the way tothe lofty ceilings; the floors are of variegated marbles, and theceilings are a mass of wood in the most intricate arabesquecarving, and painted in colors as softly blended as the hues of anancient camels' hair shawl. In one ofthese gorgeous apartments,the furniture of which is not at all in keeping with the decorations (an incongruity which one sees constantly in the Eastshabbiness and splendor are indissolubly married ) , we are receivedby the Descendant with all the ceremony of Eastern hospitality.Seated upon the divan raised above the fountain at one end ofthe apartment, we begin one of those encounters of complimentsthrough an interpreter, out of which the traveler always comesbeaten out of sight. The Seyd is a handsome intelligent man ofthirty-five, sleek with good living and repose, and a master ofOriental courtesy. His attire is all ofsilk, the blue color predominating; his only ornament is a heavy gold chain about theneck. We frame long speeches to the Seyd, and he appears toreply with equal verboseness, but what he says or what is saidto him we never know. The Eastern dragoman is not averse totalking, but he always interprets in a sort of short-hand that isfatal to conversation. I think the dragomans at such interviewsusually translate you into what they think you ought to say, andgive you such a reply as they think will be good for you." Say to his lordship that we thank him for the honor of beingpermitted to pay our respects to a person so distinguished. ""His excellency (who has been talking two minutes) say youdo him too much honor. ""Wewere unwilling to leave Cairo without seeing the residenceof so celebrated a family. "THE FLEA AND THE COPT. 109" His excellency (who has now got fairly going) feels in deepthe visit of strangers so distinguish. ""It is a great pleasure also to us to see an Arab house so oldand magnificent. ""His excellency (who might have been reciting two chaptersofthe Koran in the interval ) say not to mention it; him sorry itis not more worth you to see. "The attendants bring sherbet in large and costly cups, andchibooks elegantly mounted, and the conversation floundersalong. The ladies visit the harem above, and we look about thegarden and are shown into room after room, decorated inendless variety and with a festivity of invention and harmony ofcolor which the moderns have lost . The harem turns out to be,like all ordinary harems, I think, only mysterious on the outside.We withdraw with profuse thanks, frittered away through ourdragoman, and " His excellency say he hope you have pleasantvoyage and come safe to your family and your country. "About the outer court, and the door where we mount ourdonkeys, are many idlers in the sun, half beggars, half attendants, all of whom want backsheesh, besides the regular servantswho expect a fee in proportion to the " distinguish " of thevisitor. They are probably not unlike the clients of an ancientRoman house, or the retainers of a baronial lord of the middleages.If the visitor, however, really desires to see the antiquities ofthe Christian era, he will ride out to Old Cairo, and mouseabout among the immense rubbish heaps that have been piledthere since Fostat (as the ancient city was called) was reducedto ashes, more than seven hundred years ago, by a fire whichraged nearly two months. There is the ruined mosque of Amer,and there are the quaint old Coptic convents and churches,built about with mud walls, and hidden away amid mounds ofrubbish. To these dust-filled lanes and into these moulderingedifices the antiquarian will gladly go. These churches are theland of the flea and the home of the Copt. Anything dingier,darker, dirtier, doesn't exist. To one of them, the Sitt Miriam,Church of Our Lady, we had the greatest difficulty in getting110 HISTORICAL CURIOSITIES.admission. It is up-stairs in one of the towers of the old Romangateway of Babylon. It is a small church, but it has five aislesand some very rich wood-carving and stone-mosaics. It wascleaner than the others because it was torn to pieces in theprocess of renovation . In these churches are hung ostrich eggs,as in the mosques, and in many of them are colored marbles,and exquisite mosaics of marble, mother-of-pearl, and glass.Aboo Sirgeh, the one most visited, has a subterranean chapelwhich is the seat of an historical transaction that may interestsome minds. There are two niches in the wall, and in one ofthem, at the time of the Flight into Egypt, the Virgin Maryrested with the Child, and in the other St. Joseph reposed.That is all.A little further on, by the river bank, opposite the southernend of the island of Rhoda, the Moslems show you the spotwhere little Moses lay in his little basket, when the daughter ofPharaoh came down to bathe (for Pharaoh hadn't a bath-tub inhis house) and espied him. The women of the Nile do to- dayexactly what Pharaoh's daughter and her maidens did, but thereare no bulrushes at this place now, and no lad of the promise ofMoses is afloat.One can never have done with an exploration of Cairo, withdigging down into the strata of overlying civilizations, orstudying the shifting surface of its Oriental life. Here, in thisOld Cairo, was an ancient Egyptian town no doubt; the Romansconstructed here massive walls and towers; the followers of St.Mark erected churches; the friends of Mohammed built mosques;and here the mongrel subjects of the Khedive, a mixture ofancient Egyptian, conquering Arabian, subject Nubian, enslavedSoudan, inheritors of all civilizations and appropriators of none,kennel amid these historic ash-heaps, caring neither for theirpast nor their future.But it is drawing towards the middle of December; there aresigns that warn us to be off to the south. It may rain. Thereare symptoms of chill in the air, especially at night, and thehotel, unwarmed, is cheerless as a barn, when the sun does notshine. Indeed, give Cairo the climate of London in NovemberPHYSIC ON A LARGE SCALE. 111and everybody would perish in a week. Our preparations driftalong. It is always " tomorrow. " It requires a week to get thenew name of the boat printed on a tin. The first day thebargain for it is made; the work is to be finished bookra,tomorrow. Next day the letters are studied. The next the tinis prepared. The next day is Friday or Wednesday or someother day in which repose is required. And the next theworkman comes to know what letters the howadji desires tohave upon the tin, and how big a sign is required.Two other necessary articles remain to be procured; rocketsand other fire-works to illuminate benighted Egypt, and medicines. As we were not taking along a physician and shouldfind none of those experimenting people on the Nile, I did notsee the use of carrying drugs. Besides we were going into theone really salubrious region of the globe. But everybody takesmedicines; you must carry medicines. The guide-book givesyou a list of absolutely essential, nasty drugs and compounds,more than you would need if you were staying at home in anartificial society, with nothing to do but take them, and aphysician in every streetI bought chunks of drugs, bottles of poisons, bundles of foulsmells and bitter tastes. And then they told me that I neededbalances to weigh them in. This was too much. I was willingto take along an apothecary's shop on this pleasure excursion;I was not willing to become an apothecary. No, I said, if I amto feed out these nauseous things on the Nile, I will do itgenerously, according to taste, and like a physician, neverstinting the quantity. I would never be mean about givingmedicine to other people. And it is not difficult to get up areputation for generosity on epsom salts, rhubarb and castor oil.We carried all these drugs on the entreaty of friends and thedruggist, who said it would be very unsafe to venture so farwithout them. But I am glad we had them with us. Theknowledge that we had them was a great comfort. To be surewe never experienced a day's illness, and brought them all back,except some doses that I was able to work off upon the crew.There was a gentle black boy, who had been stolen young out112 LAYING IN A STORE OF ROCKETS.of Soudan, to whom it was a pleasure to give the most disagreeablemixtures; he absorbed enormous doses as a lily drinks dew, andthey never seemed to harm him. The aboriginal man, whoseconstitution is not weakened by civilization, can stand a greatamount of doctor's stuff. The Nile voyager is earnestlyadvised to carry a load of drugs with him; but I think werather overdid the business in castor- oil; for the fact is thatthe people in Nubia fairly swim in it, and you can cut thecane and suck it whenever you feel like it.By all means, go drugged on your pleasure voyage. It issuch a cheerful prelude to it , to read that you will need bluepills, calomel, rhubarb, Dover's powder, James's powder,carbolic acid, laudanum, quinine, sulphuric acid, sulphate ofzinc, nitrate of silver, ipecacuanha, and blistering plaster. Afew simple directions go with these. If you feel a littleunwell, take a few blue pills, only about as many as you canhold in your hand; follow these with a little Dover's powder,and then repeat, if you feel worse, as you probably will;when you rally, take a few swallows of castor- oil, and dropinto your throat some laudanum; and then, if you are alive,drink a dram of sulphuric acid. The consulting friends thengenerally add a little rice-water and a teaspoonful of brandy.In the opinion of our dragoman it is scarcely reputable togo up the Nile without a store of rockets and other pyrotechnics. Abd- el-Atti should have been born in America. Hewould enjoy a life that was a continual Fourth of July. Hewould like his pathway to be illuminated with lights, blue,red, and green, and to blaze with rockets. The suprememoment of his life is when he feels the rocket- stick tearingout of his hand. The common fire-works in the Mooskee hedespised; nothing would do but the government- made, whichare very good. The passion of some of the Egyptians forfire-arms and gunpowder is partially due to the prohibition.The government strictly forbids the use of guns and pistolsand interdicts the importation or selling of powder. On theriver a little powder and shot are more valued than money.We had obtained permission to order some rockets manu-OFFICIAL LIFE IN EGYPT. 113factured at the government works, and in due time we wentwith Abd-el-Atti to the bureau at the citadel to pay for them.The process was attended with all that deliberation whichrenders life so long and valuable in the East.We climbed some littered and dusty steps, to a roof terraceupon which opened several apartments, brick and stuccochambers with cement floors, the walls whitewashed, butyellow with time and streaked with dirt. These weregovernment offices, but office furniture was scarce. Men andboys in dilapidated gowns were sitting about on their heelssmoking. One ofthem got up and led the way, and pullingaside a soiled curtain showed us into the presence of a bey, ahandsomely dressed Turk, with two gold chains about hisneck, squatting on a ragged old divan at one end of the littleroom; and this divan was absolutely all the furniture thatthis cheerless closet, which had one window obscured withdust, contained. Two or three officers were waiting to get thebey's signature to papers, and a heap of documents lay besidehim, with an inkhorn, on the cushions.or petitioners shuffled in and out ofthe presence ofthis headof the bureau. Abd-el-Atti produced his papers, but theywere not satisfactory, and we were sent elsewhere.Half-clad attendantsPassing through one shabby room after another, we cameinto one dimmer, more stained and littered than the others.About the sides of the room upon low divans sat , cross-legged,the clerks. Before each was a shabby wooden desk whichserved no purpose, however, but to hold piles of equally shabbyaccount books. The windows were thick with dust, the floorwas dirty, the desks, books, and clerks were dirty. But theclerks were evidently good fellows, just like those in allgovernment offices-nothing to do and not pay enough to makethem uneasy to be rich. They rolled cigarettes and smokedcontinually; one or two of them were casting up columns offigures, holding the sheet of paper in the left hand and callingeach figure in a loud voice ( as if a little doubtful whether thefigure would respond to that name); and some of them wrote alittle, by way of variety. When they wrote the thin sheet of 8114 AN INTERVIEW WITH THE BEY.paper was held in the left hand and the writing done upon thepalm ( as the Arabs always write); the pen used was a bluntreed and the ink about as thick as tar. The writing resultingfrom these unfavorable conditions is generally handsome.Our entry and papers were an event in that office, and thedocuments became the subject of a general conversation.Other public business (except the cigarettes) was suspended,and nearly every clerk gave his opinion on the question,whatever it was. I was given a seat on a rickety divan,coffee was brought in, the clerks rolled cigarettes for me andthe business began to open; not that anybody showed anyspecial interest in it, however. On the floor sat two or threeboys, eating their dinner of green bean leaves and someharmless mixture of grease and flour; and a cloud of fliessettled on them undisturbed. What service the ragged boysrendered to the government I could not determine. Abd- el-`Atti was bandying jocularities with the clerks, and directingthe conversation now and then upon the rockets.In course of time a clerk found a scrap of paper, daubedone side of it with Arabic characters, and armed with this wewent to another office and got a signature to it. This, withthe other documents, we carried to another room much likethe first, where the business appeared to take a fresh start;that is, we sat down and talked; and gradually induced oneofficial after another to add a suggestion or a figure or two.Considering that we were merely trying to pay for somerockets that were ready to be delivered to us, it did seem tome that almost a whole day was too much to devote to theaffair. But I was mistaken. The afternoon was waning whenwe went again to the bey. He was still in his little " cubby,"and made room for me on the divan. A servant broughtcoffee. We lighted cigarettes, and, without haste, the beyinked the seal that hung to his gold chain, wet the paper andimpressed his name in the proper corner. We were now in acondition to go to the treasury office and pay.I expected to see a guarded room and heavily bolted safes.Instead of this there was no treasury apartment, nor anyWAITING FOR THE WIND. 115strong box. But we found the " treasury " walking about inone of the passages, in the shape of an old Arab in a whiteturban and faded yellow gown. This personage fished out ofhis deep breast- pocket a rag of a purse, counted out somechange, and put what we paid him into the same receptacle.The Oriental simplicity of the transaction was pleasing. Andthe money ought to be safe, for one would as soon think ofrobbing a derweesh as this yellow old man.The medicine is shipped, the rockets are on board, the crewhave been fitted out with cotton drawers, at our expense, (thisgarment is an addition to the gown they wear) , the name ofthe boat is almost painted, the flags are ready to hoist, andthe dahabeëh has been taken from Boulak and is mooredabove the drawbridge. We only want a north wind.



WE have taken possession of our dahabeëh, which liesmoored under the bank, out of the current, on thewest side ofthe river above the bridge. On the top ofthe bank are some structures that seem to be only moundsand walls of mud, but they are really " brivate houses," andeach one has a wooden door, with a wooden lock and key.Here, as at every other rod of the river, where the shorewill permit, the inhabitants come to fill their water-jars, towash clothes, to bathe, or to squat on their heels and wait forthe Nile to run dry.And the Nile is running rapidly away. It sweeps underthe arches of the bridge like a freshet, with a current of aboutthree miles an hour. Our sandal (the broad clumsy row-boatwhich we take in tow) is obliged to aim far above its intendedlanding- place when we cross, and four vigorous rowerscannot prevent its drifting rapidly down stream. The Nile isalways in a hurry on its whole length; even when it spreadsover flats for miles, it keeps a channel for swift passage. It isthe only thing that is in a hurry in Egypt; and the more onesees it the stronger becomes the contrast of this haste withthe flat valley through which it flows and the apatheticinhabitants of its banks.We not only have taken possession of our boat, but we havebegun housekeeping in it. We have had a farewell dinnerparty on board. Our guests, who are foreigners, declare thatthey did not suppose such a dinner possible in the East; a116THE "RIP VAN WINKLE.” 117better could not be expected in Paris. We admit that suchdinners are not common in this hungry world out of NewYork. Even in New York the soup would not have beenmade of lentils.We have passed a night under a mosquito net, morecomfortably than on shore to be sure, but we are anxious toget into motion and change the mosquitoes, the flies, the fleasof Cairo for some less rapacious. It is the seventeenth ofDecember. We are in the bazaars, buying the last things,when, at noon we perceive that the wind has shifted. Wehasten on board. Where is the dragoman! " MohammedEffendi Abd- el- Atti goin' bazaar come directly," says thewaiter. At half- past two the stout dragoman slides off hisdonkey and hastens on board with all the speed compatiblewith short legs, out of breath, but issuing a storm of orderslike a belated captain of a seventy-two. He is accompaniedby a black boy bearing the name of our dahabeëh, rudelypainted on a piece of tin, the paint not yet dry. Thedragoman regards it with some pride, and well he may, for ithas cost time and trouble. No Arab on the river canpronounce the name, but they all understand its significationwhen the legend attached to it is related, and having asimilar tale in the Koran, they have no objection to sail in adahabeëh called theRIP VAN WINKLE.The name has a sort of appropriateness in the presentawakening of Egypt to modern life, but exactly what it is wecannot explain.We seat ourselves on deck to watch the start. There is asmuch noise and confusion as if the boat were on fire. Themoment has come to cast off, when it is discovered that twoofthe crew are absent, no doubt dallying in some coffee- house.We cannot wait, they must catch us as they can. The stake ispulled up; the plank is drawn in; the boat is shoved offfrom its sand bed with grunting and yah-hoo-ing, some ofthecrew in the water, and some pushing with poles; the great sail118 ON THE NILE.drops down from the yard and the corner is hauled in to awild chorus, and we take the stream. For a moment itseems as if we should be carried against the bridge; but thesail is large, the wind seizes us, and the three- months' voyagehas begun.We are going slowly but steadily, perhaps at the rate ofthree or four miles an hour, past the receding city, drawingaway from the fleet of boats and barges on the shore and the multitudinous life on its banks. It is a scene of color,motion, variety. The river is alive with crafts of all sorts,the shores are vocal with song, laughter, and the unending"chaff " of a river population. Beyond, the spires and domesof the city are lovely in the afternoon light. The citadel andthe minarets gleam like silver against the purple of theMokattam hills. We pass the long white palace of the Queenmother; we are abreast the isle of Rhoda, its yellow palaceand its ancient Nilometer. In the cove at Geezeh arepassenger- dahabeëhs, two flying the American flag, withwhich we exchange salutes as we go. The people on theirdecks are trying with a telescope to make out the device onour pennant at the yard-arm. It affords occupation for agreat many people at different times during the voyage.Upon a white ground is a full sun, in red; following it in redletters is the legend Post Nubila Phœbus; it is the motto onthe coat of arms of the City of Hartford. Here it signifiesthat we four Hartford people, beginning this voyage, exchangethe clouds of New England for the sun of Egypt. The flagextends beyond the motto in a bifurcated blue streamer.Flag, streamer and sail take the freshening north wind. Asmaller sail is set aft. The reïs crouches on the bow, watchingthe channel; the steersman, a grave figure, pushes slowlyback and forth the long iron handle of the tiller at the stern;the crew, waiting for their supper, which is cooking near themast, begin to sing, one taking the solo and the othersstriking in with a minor response; it is not a song but a oneline ejacul*tion, followed by a sympathetic and barbaricassent in chorus.THE START. 119The shores glide past like that land of the poet's dreamwhere " it is always afternoon "; reposeful and yet brilliant.The rows of palms, the green fields, the lessening minarets,the groups of idlers in flowing raiment, picturesque in anyattitudes they assume, the depth of blue above and thetransparent soft air-can this be a permanent condition, or isit only the scene of a play?In fact, we are sailing not only away from Europe, away fromCairo, into Egypt and the confines of mysterious Africa; weare sailing into the past. Do you think our voyage is merelya thousand miles on the Nile? We have committed ourselvesto a stream that will lead us thousands of years backwards in theages, into the depths of history. When we loosed from Cairowe let go our hold upon the modern. As we recede, perhapswe shall get a truer perspective, and see more correctly the widthof the strip of time which we call our era. " There are thepyramids of Geezeh watching our departure, lifting themselvesaloft in the evening sky; there are the pyramids of Sakkara,sentinels of that long past into which we go.""It is a splendid start, for the wind blows steadily and weseem to be flying before it. It is probable that we are makingfive miles an hour, which is very well against such a current.Our dahabeëh proves to be an excellent sailor, and we have theselfish pleasure of passing boat after boat, with a little ripple ofexcitement not enough to destroy our placid enjoyments. It ismuch pleasanter to lift your hat to the travelers on a boat thatyou are drawing ahead of than it is to those of one that isdropping your boat astern.The Nile voyage is so peculiar, and is, in fact, such a luxurious method of passing a winter, that it may be well to say alittle more concerning our boat. It is about one hundred andtwenty feet long, and eighteen broad in the center, with a flatbottom and no keel; consequently it cannot tack or sail contraryto the wind, In the bow is the cook's " cubby " with the range,open to the weather forward. Behind it stands the mast, someforty feet high, and on the top of it is lashed the slender yard,which is a hundred feet long, and hangs obliquely. The enor120 ON BOARD OUR DAHABEEH.mous triangular sail stretches the length of the yard and itspoint is hauled down to the deck. When it is shifted, the ropeis let go, leaving the sail flapping, the end of the yard iscarried round the mast and the sail is hauled round in theopposite direction, with an amount of pulling, roaring, jabbering,and chorusing, more than would be necessary to change thecourse ofan American fleet ofwar. The flat, open forward deckis capable of accommodating six rowers on a side. It is flooredover now, for the sweeps are only used in descending.Then comes the cabin, which occupies the greater part of theboat, and makes it rather top-heavy and difficult of management in an adverse wind. First in the cabin are the pantry anddragoman's room; next a large saloon, used for dining, furnished with divans, mirrors, tables, and chairs, and lighted by largewindows close together. Next are rows of bedrooms, bathroom etc; a passage between leads to the after or loungingcabin, made comfortable with divans and Eastern rugs. Over thewhole cabin runs the deck, which has sofas and chairs and anawning, and is good promenading space. The rear portion ofit is devoted to the steersman, who needs plenty of room for thesweep of the long tiller. The steering apparatus is of the rudest.The tiller goes into a stern-post which plays in a hole bigenough for four of it , and creakingly turns a rude rudder.Ifyou are familiar with the Egyptian temple you will see thatour dahabeeh is built on this plan . If there is no pylon, thereis the mast which was always lashed to it. Then comes thedromos of sphinxes, the forward deck, with the crew sitting alongthe low bulwarks; the first cabin is the hall of columns, orvestibulum; behind it on each side of the passage are variouschambers; and then comes the adytum or sanctuary— the innercabin. The deck is the flat roof upon which wound the solemnprocessions; and there is a private stairway to the deck just asthere was always an inner passage to the roof from one of thesmall chambers of the temple.The boat is manned by a numerous company whose appearance in procession would excite enthusiam in any Americantown. Abd-el-Atti has for companion and clerk his nephew, aITS OFFICERS AND CREW. 121young Egyptian, (employed in the telegraph office) but in Frankdress, as all government officials are required to be.The reïs, or captain, is Hassan. Aboo Seyda, a rather statelyArab of sixty years, with a full turban, a long gown of bluecotton, and bare-footed. He walks the deck with an ease andgrace that an actor might envy; there is neither stiffness norstrut in it; it is a gait of simple majesty which may be inherited.from generations of upright ancestors, but could never beacquired. Hassan is an admirable figure-head to the expedition,but he has no more pluck or authority than an old hen, andwas of not much more use on board than a hen would be in achicken-hatching establishment.Abdel Hady Hassed, the steerman is a Nubian from the FirstCataract, shiny black in color, but with regular and delicatefeatures. I can see him now, with his turban set well back onhis head, in a loose, long- sleeved, brown garment, and withoutstockings or slippers, leaning against his tiller and lookingstraight ahead with unchanging countenance. His face had thepeculiarity, which is sometimes seen, of appearing always tohave a smile on it. He was born with that smile; he will diewith it. An admirable person, who never showed the leastexcitement. That man would run us fast on a sand-bank, putus on a rock in plain sight, or let his sail jibe, without changinga muscle of his face, and in the most agreeable and good-naturedmanner in the world. And he never exhibited the least petulance at his accidents. I hope he will be rewarded for thenumber of hours he patiently stood at that tiller. The reiswould take the helm when Abdel wanted to say his prayers orto eat his simple meals; but, otherwise, I always found him athis post, late at night or in the early morning, gazing around onEgypt with that same stereotyped expression of pleasure.The cook, Hasaneyn Mahrowan (the last name has an Irishsound, but the first is that of the sacred mosque where is buriedthe head of the martyr El Hoseyn) is first among his craft, andcontrives to produce on his little range in the bow a dinner thatwould have made Rameses II. a better man. He is always athis post, like the steersman, and no matter what excitement or122 - TYPES OF EGYPTIAN RACES.peril we may be in, Hasaneyn stirs his soup or bastes his chickenwith perfect sang froid. The fact is that these Orientals havegot a thousand or two thousand years beyond worry, and neverfeel any responsibility for what others are doing.The waiter, a handsome Cairene, is the perfection of atrained servant, who understands signs better than English.Hoseyn Ali also rejoices in a noble name. Hasan and Hoseynare, it is well known, the " two lords of the youths of thepeople of Paradise, in Paradise "; they were grandsons of theProphet. Hoseyn was slain at the battle of the Plain ofKarbalà. Hoseyn is the most smartly dressed fellow onboard. His jacket and trousers are of silk; he wears a gaykuffia about his fez and his waist is girded with a fineCashmere shawl. The fatal defect in his dress is that the fulltrowsers do not quite meet the stockings. There is alwayssome point of shabbiness or lack of finish in every Orientalobject.The waiter's lieutenant is an Abyssinian boy who rejoicesin the name of Ahman Abdallah (or, “ Slave of God "); andthe cook's boy is Gohah ebn Abdallah (“ His father slave ofGod"). This is the poetical way of putting their condition;they were both slaves of Abd- el-Atti, but now, he says, he hasfreed them. For Gohah he gave two napoleons when the ladwas new. Greater contrast could not be between two coloredboys. Ahman is black enough, but his features are regularand well made, he has a bright merry eye, and is quick in allhis intuitions, and intellectually faithful to the least particular.He divines the wants of his masters by his quick wit, andnever neglects or forgets anything. Gohah is from theSoudan, and a perfect Congo negro in features and texture ofskin-lips protruding and nose absolutely level with hischeeks; as faithful and affectionate as a Newfoundland dog, amild, gentle boy. What another servant would know throughhis sharpened interest, Gohah comprehends by his affections.I have described these persons, because they are types ofthe almost infinite variety of races and tribes in Egypt.Besides these there are fourteen sailors, and no two of theTHE KINGDOM OF THE "STICK." 123same shade or with similar features. Most of them are ofUpper Egypt, and two or three of them are Nubians, but Ishould say that all are hopelessly mixed in blood. Ahmed,for instance, is a Nubian, and the negro blood comes out inhim in his voice and laugh and a certain rolling anticmovement of the body. Another sailor has that flush of redunder dark in the face which marks the quadroon. The dressof the crew is usually a gown, a pair of drawers, and a turban.Ahmed wears a piece of Turkish toweling round his head.The crew is an incongruous lot altogether; a third of themsmoke hasheesh whenever they can get it; they never obeyan order without talking about it and suggesting somethingdifferent; they are all captains in fact; they are rarely quiet,jabbering, or quarreling, or singing, when they are not haulingthe sail, hoisting us from a sandbar, or stretched on deck indeep but not noiseless slumber. You cannot but like the goodnatured rascals.An irresponsible, hard- working, jolly, sullen, contradictorylot, of big children, who, it is popularly reported, need akoorbág (a whip of hippopotamus hide) to keep them in the wayofindustry and obedience. It seems to me that a little kindnesswould do better than a good deal of whip. But the kindnessought to have begun some generations back. The koorbág isthe legitimate successor of the stick, and the Egyptians havebeen ruled by the stick for a period of which history reportsnot to the contrary. In the sculptures on the earliest tombs,laborers are driven to their tasks with the stick. Sailors onthe old Nile boats are menaced with the stick. The overseerin the field swings the stick. Prisoners and slaves aremarshalled in line with the stick. The stick is to-day also theone visible and prevalent characteristic of the government ofEgypt. And I think that it is a notion among the subjectclasses, that a beating is now and then good for them. Theymight feel neglected without it. I cannot find that Egyptwas ever governed in any other way than on the old plan of force and fear.If there is anything that these officers and sailors do not124 THE "FALSE" PYRAMID OF MAYDOON.understand, it is the management of a Nile boat. But this isanticipating. Just now all goes as merrily as a colored ball.The night is soft, the moon is half full; the river spreads outin shining shallows; the shores are dim and show lines offeathery palms against the sky; we meet or pass white sailswhich flash out of the dimness and then vanish; the long lineof pyramids of Sakkara is outlined beyond the palms; nowthere is a light on shore and a voice or the howling of a dogis heard; along the bank by the ruins of old Memphis ajackal runs barking in the moonlight. By half- past nine weare abreast the pyramids of Dashoor. A couple of dahabeëhsare laid up below for the night, and the lights from their rowsofcabin windows gleam cheerfully on the water.We go right on, holding our way deeper and deeper intothis enchanted country. The night is simply superb, such awide horizon, such brilliancy above! Under the night, theboat glides like a phantom ship; it is perfectly steady, and weshould not know we were in motion but for the runningripple at the sides. By this lulling sound we sleep, havingcome, for once in the world, into a country of tranquillity,where nothing need ever be done till tomorrow, for tomorrowis certain to be like to-day.When we came on deck at eight o'clock in the morningafter "flying " all night as on birds' wings, we found that wehad made thirty- five miles, and were almost abreast of theFalse Pyramid of Maydoon, so called because it is supposedto be built about a rock; a crumbled pyramid but curiouslyconstructed, and perhaps older than that of Cheops. From atomb in the necropolis here came the two life- size and strikingfigures that are in the Boulak Mnseum at Cairo. The statues,carved in calcareous limestone, represent two exceedinglyrespectable and intelligent looking persons, who resembleeach other enough to be brother and sister; they wereprobably alive in the third dynasty. They sit up now, withhands on knees, having a bright look on their faces as if theyhadn't winked in five thousand years, and were expectingcompany.DREAMING ON THE RIVER. 125I said we were " flying " all night. This needs qualification.We went aground three times and spent a good part of thenight in getting off. It is the most natural thing in navigation. We are conscious of a slight grating, then a gentlelurch, not enough to disturb a dream, followed, however, bya step on deck, and a jabber of voices forward . The sail isloosed; the poles are taken from the rack and an effort ismade to shove off by the use of some muscle and a good dealof chorus; when this fails, the crew jump overboard and wehear them splashing along the side. They put their backs tothe boat and lift, with a grunting “ Euh-hè, euh-hè,” whichchanges into a rapid " halee, halee, halee, " as the boat slidesoff; and the crew scramble on board to haul tight the sail,with an emphatic " Yah! Mohammed, Yah! Mohammed."We were delayed some hours altogether, we learn.was not delay. There can be no delay on this voyage; forthere is no one on board who is in any haste. Are we not thetemporary owners of this boat, and entirely irresponsible forany accident, so that if it goes down with all on board, andnever comes to port, no one can hold us for damages?The day is before us, and not only the day, but, Providencepermitting, a winter of days like it. There is nothing to bedone, and yet we are too busy to read even the guide- book.There is everything to be seen; it is drifting past us, we aregliding away from it. It is all old and absolutely novel. Ifthis is laziness that is stealing over us, it is of an alert sort.In the East, laziness has the more graceful title of resignation;but we have not come to that condition even; curiosity isconstantly excited, and it is a sort of employment to breathethis inspiring air.We are spectators of a pageant that never repeats itself; foralthough there is a certain monotony in the character of theriver and one would think that its narrow strips of arableland would soon be devoid of interest, the scenes are nevertwice alike. The combinations vary, the desert comes nearand recedes, the mountains advance in bold precipices orfallaway; the groups of people, villages, trees, are always shifting.126 CURIOUS CRAFTS.And yet, in fact, the scenery changes little during the day.There are great reaches of river, rapidly flowing, and widebends across which we see vessels sailing as if in the meadows.The river is crowded all day with boats, pleasure dahabeëhs,and trading vessels uncouth and picturesque. The passengerdahabëeh is long, handsomely painted, carries an enormous sailon its long yard, has a national flag and a long streamer; andgroups of white people sit on deck under the awning; some ofthem are reading, some sketching, and now and then a manrises and discharges his shot-gun at a flock of birds a half amile beyond its range.The boats of African traders are short, high-pooped, and havethe rudder stepped out behind. They usually carry no flag,and are dirty and lack paint, but they carry a load that wouldinterest the most blasé European. Those bound up-stream,under full sail, like ourselves, are piled with European boxesand bales, from stem to stern; and on top of the freight, in themidst of the freight, sitting on it, stretched out on it, peepingfrom it, is another cargo of human beings, men, women andchildren, black, yellow, clothed in all the hues of heaven andthe rags of earth. It is an impassive load that stares at us withincurious, unwinking eyes.The trading boats coming down against the current, are evenmore strange and barbarous. They are piled with merchandise,but of a different sort. The sails and yards are down, and thelong sweeps are in motion, balanced on outriggers, for theforward deck is filled, and the rowers walk on top of the goodsas they move the oars to and fro. How black the rowers are!How black everybody on board is! They come suddenly uponus, like those nations we have read of, who sit in great darkness.The rowers are stalwart fellows whose basalt backs shine in thesun as they bend to the oar; in rowing they walk towards thecabin and pull the heavy oars as they step backwards, and everysweep is accompanied by the burst of a refrain in chorus, a wildresponse to a line that has been chanted by the leader as theystepped forwards. The passengers sit immoveable in the sunand regard us with a calmness and gravity which are onlyBOAT-RACES ON THE NILE. 127attainable near the equatorial regions, where things approach inequilibrium.Sometimes we count nearly one hundred dahabeëhs in sight,each dipping or veering or turning in the sun its bird-wing sailthe most graceful in the world. A person with fancies, who iswatching them, declares that the triangular sails resemble quillscut at the top for pens, and that the sails, seen over the tongueof land of a long bend ahead, look like a procession of goosequills.The day is warm enough to call out all the birds; flocks ofwild geese clang overhead, and companies of them, ranks onranks, stand on the low sand-dunes; there are pelicans also,motionless in the shallow water near the shore, meditating like aderweesh on one leg, and not caring that the thermometer doesmark 74°. Little incidents entertain us. We like to pass theDongola, flying " Ohio" from its yard, which took advantage ofour stopping for milk early in the morning to go by us. Weoverhaul an English boat and have a mildly exciting race withher till dark, with varying fortune, the boats being nearly amatch, and the victory depending upon some trick or skill onthe part of the crew. All the party look at us, in a most unsympathetic manner, through goggles, which the English always puton whenever they leave the twilight of England. I do not knowthat we have any right to complain of this habit of wearingwire eye-screens and goggles; persons who have it mean noharm by it, and their appearance is a source of gratification toothers. But I must say that goggles have a different effect indifferent lights. When we were sailing slowly past the Englishman, the goggles regarded us with a feeble and hopeless look.But when the Englishman was, in turn, drawing ahead of us,the goggles had a glare of " Who the devil are you? " Of courseit was only in the goggles. For I have seen many of these raceson the Nile, and passengers always affect an extreme indifference,leaving all demonstrations of interest to the crews of the boats.The two banks of the river keep all day about the samerelative character-the one sterile, the other rich. Onthe east,the brown sand licks down almost to the water; there is only a128 NATIVE VILLAGES ON THE BANKS.strip of green; there are few trees, and habitations only at longintervals. Only a little distance back are the Mokattam hills,which keep a rarely broken and level sky-line for two hundredand fifty miles south of Cairo.The west side is a broad valley. The bank is high and continually caving in, like the alluvial bottoms of the Missouri; itis so high that from our deck we can see little of the land. Thereare always, however, palm- trees in sight, massed in groves,standing in lines, or waving their single tufts in the blue. Theseare the date-palms, which have no branches on their long poles;each year the old stalks are cut off for fuel, and the trunk, amass of twisted fibres, comes to have a rough bark, as if the treehad been shingled the wrong way. Stiff in form and with onlythe single crown of green, I cannot account for its effect ofgrace and beauty. It is the life of the Nile, as the Nile is lifeto it. It bears its annual crop of fruit to those who want it, anda crop of taxes for the Khedive. Every palm pays in fact a polltax, whether it brings forth dates or not.Where the bank slopes we can see the springing wheat andbarley darkly green; it is sown under the palms even, for nofoot of ground is left vacant. All along the banks are shadoofs,at which men in black stand all day raising water, that flowsback in regulated streams; for the ground falls slightly awayfrom the height of the bank. At intervals appears a little collection of mud hovels, dumped together without so much plan asyou would find in a beaver settlement, but called a village, andhaving a mud minaret and perhaps a dome. An occasionalfigure is that of a man plowing with a single ox; it has just thestiff square look of the sculptures in the tombs.Now and then where a zig-zag path is cut, or the bank slopes,women are washing clothes in the river, or groups of them arefilling their water-jars. They come in files from the villages andwe hear their shrill voices in incessant chatter. These countrywomen are invariably in black or dark brown; they are notveiled, but draw their head shawl over the face as our boatpasses. Their long gowns are drawn up, exposing bare feet andlegs as they step into the stream. The jars are large and heavySONGS OF THE SAILORS. 129when unfilled, and we marvel how they can raise them to theirheads when they are full of water. The woman drags her jarout upon the sand, squats before it, lifts it to her head with herhands, and then rises steadily and walks up the steep bank andover the sand, holding her robe with one hand and steadying thejar with the other, with perfect grace and ease of motion. Thestrength of limbs required to raise that jar to the head and thenrise with it, ought to be calculated by those in our own land whoare striving to improve the condition of woman.We are still flying along with the unfailing wind, and themerry progress communicates its spirit to the crew. Beforesunset they get out their musical instruments, and squatting ina circle on the forward deck, prepare to enjoy themselves.One thumps and shakes the tambourine, one softly beats withhis fingers the darabooka drum, and another rattles castanets.All who are not so employed beat time by a jerking motion ofthe raised hands, the palms occasionally coming together whenthe rhythm is properly accented. The leader, who has a verygood tenor voice, chants a minor and monotonous love-song towhich the others respond, either in applause of the sentiment orin a burst of musical enthusiasm which they cannot contain.Ahmed, the Nubian, whose body is full of Congoism, enters intoit with a delightful abandon, swaying from side to side andindulging in an occasional shout, as if he were at a camp-meeting.His ugly and good-natured face beams with satisfaction, anexpression that is only slightly impaired by the vacant placewhere two front teeth ought to shine. The song is rude andbarbarous but not without a certain plaintiveness; the song,and scene belong together. In this manner the sailors of theancient Egyptians amused themselves without doubt; theirinstruments were the same; thus they sat upon the ground, thusthey clapped hands, thus they improvised ejacul*tions to the absent beloved: -"The night! The night! O thou with sweet hands!Holding the dewy peach. "The sun goes down, leaving a rosy color in the sky, that 9130 VESTIGES OF ANCIENT CIVILIZATION.changes into an ashes-of-roses color, that gradually fades intothe indefinable softness of night punctured with stars.We are booming along all night, under the waxing moon.This is not so much a voyage as a flight, chased by the northwind. The sail is always set, the ripples are running alwaysalong the sides, the shores slide by as in a dream; the reïs is atthe bow, the smiling steersman is at the helm; if we wereenchanted we could not go on more noiselessly. There issomething ghostly about this night-voyage through a land soimperfectly defined to the senses but so crowded with history.If only the dead who are buried on these midnight shores wereto rise, we should sail through a vast and ghastly concoursepacking the valley and stretching away into the desert.About midnight I step out of the cabin to look at the night.I stumble over a sleeping Arab. Two sailors, set to hold thesail-rope and let it go in case of a squall of wind, are noddingover it. The night is not at all gloomy or mysterious, but in allthe broad sweep of it lovely and full of invitation . We are justpassing the English dahabeëh, whose great sail is dark as weapproach, and then takes the moon full upon it as we fileabreast. She is hugging the bank and as we go by there is asnap. In the morning Abd-el-Atti says that she broke the tipof her yard against the bank. At any rate she lags behind likea crippled bird.In the morning we are in sight of four dahabeëhs, but weoverhaul and pass them all. We have contracted a habit ofdoing it. One of them gets her stern- sprit knocked off as shesheers before us, whereupon the sailors exchange compliments,and our steersman smiles just as he would have done if he hadsent the Prussian boat to the bottom. The morning is delicious,not a cloud in the sky, and the thermometer indicating atemperature of 56°; this moderates speedily under the sun, butif you expected an enervating climate in the winter on the Nileyou will be disappointed; it is on the contrary inspiring.We pass the considerable town of Golósaneh, not caring verymuch about it; we have been passing towns and mounds andvestiges of ancient and many times dug-up civilizations, day andTHE RELIGION OF THE COPTS. 131night. We cannot bother with every ash-heap described in theguide-book. Benisooef, which has been for thousands of yearsan enterprising city, we should like to have seen, but we wentby in the night. And at night most of these towns are as blackas the moon will let them be, lights being very rare. We usuallyreceive from them only the salute of a barking dog. Inlandfrom Golósaneh rises the tall and beautiful minaret of Semaloot,a very pretty sight above the palm-groves; so a church spiremight rise out of a Connecticut meadow. At 10 o'clock wedraw near the cliffs of Gebel e ' Tayr, upon the long flatsummit of which stands the famous Coptic convent of SittehMiriam el Adra, “ Our Lady Mary the Virgin, "-called alsoDayr el Adra.We are very much interested in the Copts, and are glad of theopportunity to see something of the practice of their religion.For the religion is as peculiar as the race. In fact, the moreone considers the Copt, the more difficult it is to define him.He is a descendant of the ancient Egyptians, it is admitted, andhe retains the cunning of the ancients in working gold andsilver; but his blood is crossed with Abyssinian, Nubian,Greek and Arab, until the original is lost, and to-day therepresentatives of the pure old Egyptian type of the sculpturesare found among the Abyssinians and the Noobeh (genuineNubians) more frequently than among the Copts. The Coptusually wears a black or brown turban or cap; but if he wore awhite one it would be difficult to tell him from a Moslem. TheCopts universally use Arabic; their ancient language is practically dead, although their liturgy and some of their religiousbooks are written in it . This old language is supposed to bethe spoken tongue of the old Egyptians.The number of Christian Copts in Egypt is small-but stilllarge enough; they have been persecuted out of existence, orhave voluntarily accepted Mohammedanism and married amongthe faithful. The Copts in religion are seceders from the orthodox church, and their doctrine of the Trinity was condemnedby the council of Chalcedon; they consequently hate the Greeksmuch more than they hate the Moslems. They reckon St.Mark their first patriarch.132 THE MONKS OF GEBEL E' TAYR.Their religious practice is an odd jumble of many others.Most of them practice circumcision. The baptism of infants isheld to be necessary; for a child dying unbaptized will beblind in the next life . Their fasts are long and strict; in theirprayers they copy both Jews and Moslems, praying often andwith endless repetitions. They confess before taking the sacrament; they abstain from swine's flesh, and make pilgrimages toJerusalem . Like the Moslems they put off their shoes onentering the place of worship, but they do not behave therewith the decorum of the Moslem; they stand always in thechurch and as the service is three or four hours long, beginningoften at daybreak, the long staff or crutch upon which they leanis not a useless appendage. The patriarch, who dwells in Cairo,is not, I think, a person to be envied. He must be a monkoriginally and remain unmarried, and this is a country wheremarriage is so prevalent. Besides this, he is obliged to wearalways a woolen garment next the skin, an irritation in thisclimate more constant than matrimony. And report says thathe lives under rules so rigid that he is obliged to be waked up,if he sleeps, every fifteen minutes. I am inclined to think,however, that this is a polite way of saying that the old manhas a habit of dropping off to sleep every quarter of an hour.The cliffs of Gebel e ' Tayr are of soft limestone, and seem tobe two hundred feet high. In one place a road is cut down tothe water, partly by a zig-zag covered gallery in the face of therock, and this is the usual landing-place for the convent. Theconvent, which is described as a church under ground, is in themidst of a mud settlement of lay brothers and sisters, and thewhole is surrounded by a mud wall. From below it has theappearance of an earthwork fortification . The height commandsthe river for a long distance up and down, and from it themonks are on the lookout for the dahabeëhs of travelers. It istheir habit to plunge into the water, clothed on only with theirprofessions of holiness, swim to the boats, climb on board anddemand "backsheesh " on account of their religion.It is very rough as we approach the cliffs, the waves are high,and the current is running strong. We fear we are to beA ROYAL LUXURY. 133disappointed, but the monks are superior to wind and waves.While we are yet half a mile off, I see two of them in the water,their black heads under white turbans, bobbing about in thetossing and muddy waves. They make heroic efforts to reachus; we can hear their voices faintly shouting: Ana Christian, OHowadji, "I am a Christian, O! Howadji. ""Wehave nodoubt you are exceptional Christians," we shout tothem in reply, " Why don't you come aboard-back-s-h-e-e-s-h! "They are much better swimmers than the average Christianwith us. But it is in vain. They are swept by us and awayfrom us like corks on the angry waves, and even their hail ofChristian fellowship is lost in the whistling wind. When we areopposite the convent another head is seen bobbing about in thewater; he is also swept below us, but three-quarters of a miledown-stream he effects a landing on another dahabeëh. As heclimbs into the jolly- boat which is towed behind and standserect, he resembles a statue in basalt.It is a great feat to swim in a current so swift as this andlashed by such a wind. I should like to have given these monkssomething, if only to encourage so robust a religion. Butnone of them succeeded in getting on board. Nothinghappens to us as to other travelers, and we have no opportunity to make the usual remarks upon the degraded appearanceofthese Coptic monks at Dayr el Adra. So far as I saw themthey were very estimable people.At noon we are driving past Minieh with a strong wind.It appears to be—but if you were to land you would find thatit is not a handsome town, for it has two or three gracefulminarets, and the long white buildings of the sugar-factory,with its tall chimneys, and the palace of the Khedive, stretchingalong the bank give it an enterprising and cheerful aspect.This new palace of his Highness cost about half a million ofdollars, and it is said that he has never passed a night in it .I confess I rather like this; it must be a royal sensation to beable to order houses made like suits of clothes without evereven trying them on. And it is a relief to see a decentbuilding and a garden now and then, on the river.134 THE REAL GUM-ARABIC.We go on, however, as if we were running away from thesheriff, for we cannot afford to lose the advantage of such awind. Along the banks the clover is growing sweet andgreen as in any New England meadow in May, and donkeysare browsing in it tended by children; a very pleasant sight,to see this ill-used animal for once in clover and trying tobury his long ears in luxury. Patches of water- melon plantsare fenced about by low stockades of dried rushes stuck in thesand-for the soil looks like sand.This vegetation is not kept alive, however, without constantlabor; weeds never grow, it is true, but all green thingswould speedily wither if the shadoofs were not kept inmotion, pouring the Nile into the baked and thirsty soil.These simple contrivances for irrigation, unchanged since thetime of the Pharaohs, have already been described . Here twotiers are required to lift the water to the level of the fields; thefirst dipping takes it into a canal parallel with the bank, andthence it is raised to the top. Two men are dipping the leathernbuckets at each machine, and the constant bending down andlifting up oftheir dark bodies are fatiguing even to the spectator.Usually in barbarous countries one pities the woman; but Isuppose this is a civilized region, for here I pity the men. Thewomen have the easier tasks of washing clothes in the coolstream, or lying in the sand. The women all over the East havean unlimited capacity for sitting motionless all day by a runningstream or a pool of water.In the high wind the palm-trees are in constant motiontossing their feather tufts in the air; some of them are blownlike an umbrella turned wrong side out, and a grove presentsthe appearance of crowd of people overtaken by a suddensquall. The acacia tree, which the Arabs call the sont, theacanthus of Strabo ( Mimosa Nilotica) begins to be seen withthe palm. It is a thorny tree, with small yellow blossoms andbears a pod. But what interests us most is the gum thatexudes from its bark; for this is the real Gum Arabic! ThatHeaven has been kind enough to let us see that mysterious gummanufacturing itself! The Gum Arabic of our childhood.HASHEESH- SMOKING. 135How often have I tried to imagine the feelings of a distantand unconverted boy to whom Gum Arabic was as common asspruce gum to a New England lad.As I said, we go on as if we were evading the law; our dahabeëh seems to have taken the bit in its teeth and is runningaway with us. We pass everything that sails, and begin to feelno pride in doing so; it is a matter of course. The other dahabeëhs are left behind, some with broken yards. I heard reportsafterwards that we broke their yards, and that we even drowneda man. It is not true. We never drowned a man, and neverwished to. We were attending to our own affairs. The crewwere busy the first day or two of the voyage in cutting up theirbread and spreading it on the upper deck to dry-heaps of it,bushels of it. It is a black bread, made of inferior unboltedwheat, about as heavy as lead, and sour to the uneducatedtaste. The Egyptians like it, however, and it is said to be veryhealthful. The men gnaw chunks of it with relish, but it isusually prepared for eating by first soaking it in Nile-water andwarming it over a fire, in a big copper dish. Into the " stodge 'thus made is sometimes thrown some " greens " snatched fromthe shore. The crew seat themselves about this dish when it isready, and each one dips his right hand into the mass and clawsout a mouthful The dish is always scraped clean. Meat isvery rarely had by them, only a few times during the wholevoyage; but they vary their diet by eating green beans, lettuce,onions, lentils, and any sort of " greens " they can lay hands on.The meal is cooked on a little fire built on a pile of stones nearthe mast. When it is finished they usually gather about the firefor a pull at the " hubble-bubble." This is a sort of pipe witha cocoa- nut shell filled with water, through which the smokepasses. Usually a lump of hasheesh is put into the bowl with.the tobacco. A puff or two of this mixture is enough; it setsthe smoker coughing and conveys a pleasant stupor to his brain.Some ofthe crew never smoke it, but content themselves withcigarettes. And the cigarettes, they are always rolling up andsmoking while they are awake.The hasheesh-smokers are alternately elated and depressed,136 EGYPTIAN ROBBERS.and sometimes violent and noisy. A man addicted to the habitis not good for much; the hasheesh destroys his nerves andbrain, and finally induces idiocy. Hasheesh intoxication is themost fearful and prevalent vice in Egypt. The government hasmade many attempts to stop it, but it is too firmly fixed; the useof hasheesh is a temporary refuge from poverty, hunger, and allthe ills of life, and appears to have a stronger fascinationthan any other indulgence. In all the towns one may see thedark little shops where the drug is administered, and generallyrows of victims in a stupid doze stretched on the mud benches.Sailors are so addicted to hasheesh that it is almost impossibleto make up a decent crew for a dahabeëh.Late in the afternoon we are passing the famous rock-tombsof Beni Hassan, square holes cut in the face of the cliff, highup. With our glasses we can see paths leading to them overthe debris and along the ledges. There are two or three rowsof these tombs, on different ledges; they seem to be high, dry,and airy, and I should rather live in them, dead or alive, thanin the mud hovels of the fellaheen below. These places ofsepulchre are older than those at Thebes, and from thepictures and sculptures in them, more than from any others,the antiquarians have reconstructed the domestic life of theancient Egyptians. This is a desolate spot now; there is adecayed old mud village below, and a little south of it is thenew town; both can barely be distinguished from the brownsand and rock in which and in front of which they stand.This is a good place for thieves, or was before IbraheemPasha destroyed these two villages. We are warned that thiswhole country produces very skillful robbers, who will swimoff and glean the valuables from a dahabeëh in a twinkling.Notwithstanding the stiff breeze the thermometer marks74°; but both wind and temperature sink with the sun.Before the sun sets, however, we are close under the eastbank, and are watching the play of light on a magnificentpalm-grove, beneath which stand the huts of the modernvillage of Sheykh Abádeh. It adds romance to the lovelinessof the scene to know that this is the site of ancient Antinoë,SITTING IN DARKNESS. 137built by the Emperor Adrian. To be sure we didn't know ittill this moment, but the traveler warms up to a fact of thiskind immediately, and never betrays even to his intimatefriends that he is not drawing upon his inexhaustible memory."That is the ancient Antinoë, built by Adrian. "Oh, the hypocrisy and deceit of the enthusiastic,"Is it?""Yes, and handsome Antinous was drowned here in theNile. ""Did they recover his body?"Upon the bank there are more camels, dogs, and donkeysthan we have seen all day; buffaloes are wallowing in themuddy margin. They are all in repose; the dogs do notbark, and the camels stretch their necks in a sort of undulatoryexpression of discontent, but do not bleat, or roar, or squawk,or make whatever the unearthly noise which they make iscalled. The men and the women are crouching in the shelterof their mud walls, with the light of the setting sun upontheir dark faces. They draw their wraps closer about themto protect themselves from the north wind, and regard usstolidly and without interest as we go by. And when thelight fades, what is there for them? No cheerful lamp, nobook, no newspaper. They simply crawl into their kennelsand sleep the sleep of " inwardness " and peace.Just here the arable land on the east bank is broader thanusual, and there was evidently a fine city built on the edge ofthe desert behind it. The Egyptians always took waste anddesert land for dwellings and for burial-places, leaving everyfoot of soil available for cultivation free. There is evidenceall along here of a once much larger population, though Idoubt if the east bank of the river was ever much inhabited.The river banks would support many more people than wefind here if the land were cultivated with any care. Itsfertility, with the annual deposit, is simply inexhaustible, andit is good for two and sometimes three crops a year. But wepass fields now and then that are abandoned, and others thatdo not yield half what they might. The people are oppressed138 PROFITABLE AGRICULTURE.raise more than isBut I suppose thisThe masters havewith taxes and have no inducement toabsolutely necessary to keep them alive.has always been the case in Egypt.squeezed the last drop from the people, and anything like anaccumulation of capital by the laborers is unknown. TheRomans used a long rake, with fine and sharp teeth, and Ihave no doubt that they scraped the country as clean as thepresent government does.The government has a very simple method of adjusting itstaxes on land and crops. They are based upon the extent ofthe inundation. So many feet rise, overflowing such an area,will give such a return in crops; and tax on this productcan be laid in advance as accurately as when the crops areharvested. Nature is certain to do her share ofthe work; therewill be no frost, nor any rain to spoil the harvest, nor anyfreakishness whatever on the part of the weather. If theharvest is not up to the estimate, it is entirely the fault of thelaborer, who has inadequately planted or insufficiently watered.In the same manner a tax is laid upon each palm-tree, and ifit does not bear fruit, that is not the fault of the government.There must be some satisfaction in farming on the Nile.You are always certain of the result of your labor, * Whereas,in our country farming is the merest lottery. The season willopen too wet or too dry, the seed may rot in the ground, the

  • It should be said, however, that the ancient Egyptians found the agricul- tural conditions beset with some vexations. A papyrus in the British

Museum contains a correspondence between Ameneman, the librarian of Rameses II, and his pupil Pentaour, who wrote the celebrated epic upon the exploits of that king on the river Orontes. One of the letters describes thelife ofthe agricultural people:-" Have you ever conceived what sort of life the peasant leads who cultivates the soil? Even before it is ripe, insects destroy part of his harvest. . . Multitudes of rats are in the field; next come invasions of locusts, cattle ravage his harvest, sparrows alight in flocks on his sheaves. If he delays to get in his harvest, robbers come to carry it off with him; his horse dies of fatigue in drawing the plow; the tax-collec- tor arrives in the district, and has with him men armed with sticks, negroeswith palm-branches. All say, ' Give us of your corn , ' and he has no means of escaping their exactions. Next the unfortunate wretch is seized, bound, andcarried off by force to work on the canals; his wife is bound, his children are stripped. And at the same time his neighbors have each of them his own trouble. "SUCCESSFUL VOYAGING. 139young plant may be nipped with frost or grow pale for wantof rain, the crop runs the alternate hazards of drought orfloods, it is wasted by rust or devoured by worms; and, tocap the climax, if the harvest is abundant and of good quality,the price goes down to an unremunerative figure. In Egyptyou may scratch the ground, put in the seed, and then go tosleep for three months, in perfect certainty of a good harvest,if only the shadoof and the sakiya are kept in motion.By eight o'clock in the evening, on a falling wind, we arepassing Roda, whose tall chimneys have been long in sight.Here is one of the largest of the Khedive's sugar- factories,and a new palace which has never been occupied. We areone hundred and eighty-eight miles from Cairo, and havemade this distance in two days, a speed for which I supposehistory has no parallel; at least our dragoman says that sucha run has never been made before at this time ofthe year, andwe are quite willing to believe a statement which reflects somuch honor upon ourselves, for choosing such a boat andsuch a dragoman.This Nile voyage is nothing, after all; its length has beengreatly overestimated . We shall skip up the river and backagain before the season is half spent, and have to go somewhere else for the winter. A man feels all- powerful, so longas the wind blows; but let his sails collapse and there is not amore crest-fallen creature. Night and day our sail has beenfull, and we are puffed up with pride.At this rate we shall hang out our colored lanterns atThebes on Christmas night.



THE morning puts a new face on our affairs. It is Sunday,THand the most devout could not desire a quieter day. Thereis a thick fog on the river, and not breeze enough stirringto show the stripes on our flag; the boat holds its own againstthe current by a sort of accumulated impulse. During the nightwe may have made five miles altogether, and now we barelycrawl. We have run our race; if we have not come into ahaven, we are at a stand-still, and it does not seem now as if weever should wake up and go on again. However, it is just aswell. Why should we be tearing through this sleepy land at therate of four miles an hour?The steersman half dozes at the helm; the reïs squats nearhim watching the flapping sails; the crew are nearly all asleepon the forward deck, with their burnouses drawn over their headand the feet bare, for it is chilly as late as nine o'clock, and thethermometer has dropped to 54°. Abd-el-Atti slips his beads.uneasily along between his fingers, and remembers that when hesaid that we would reach Asioot in another day, he forgot toejacul*te; " God willing. " Yet he rises and greets our comingfrom the cabin with a willing smile, and a—"Morning sir, morning marm. I hope you enjoyin' you sleep,marm. ""Where are we now, Abd-el-Atti? ""Not much, marm; this is a place call him Hadji Kandeel.But we do very well; I not to complain."66" Do you think we shall have any wind to-day? "140INVENTING A NEW DIVINITY. 141"I d' know, be sure. The wind come from Lord. Not so? "Hadji Kandeel is in truth only a scattered line of huts, butone lands here to visit the grottoes or rock-tombs of Tel elAmárna. All this country is gaping with tombs apparently;all the cliffs are cut into receptacles for the dead, all along themargin of the desert on each side are old necropolises andmoslem cemeteries, in which generation after generation, foralmost fabulous periods of time, has been deposited. Herebehind Hadji Kandeel are remains of a once vast city built let ussay sixteen hundred years before our era, by Amunoph IV. , awayward king of the eighteenth dynasty, and made the capitalof Egypt. In the grottoes of Tel el Amárna were depositedthis king and his court and favorites, and his immediatesuccessors all the splendor of them sealed up there and forgotten. This king forsook the worship of the gods of Thebes,and set up that of a Semitic deity, Aten, a radiating disk, asun with rays terminating in human hands. It was his motherwholed him into this, and she was not an Egyptian; neither arethe features of the persons sculptured in the grottoes Egyptian.Thus all along the stream of Egyptian history cross currents arecoming in, alien sovereigns and foreign task-masters; and greatbreaks appear, as if one full civilization had run its course ofcenturies, and decay had come, and then ruin, and then a newstart and a fresh career.Early this morning, when we were close in to the west bank,I heard measured chanting, and saw a procession of men andwomen coming across the field. The men bore on a rude bierthe body of a child. They came straight on to the bank, and thenturned by the flank with military precision and marched upstream to the place where a clumsy country ferry-boat had justlanded. The chant of the men, as they walked, was deep-voicedand solemn, and I could hear in it frequently repeated the nameof Mohammed. The women in straggling file followed, like asort of ill-omened birds in black, and the noise they made, akind of wail, was exactly like the cackle of wild geese. Indeedbefore I saw the procession I thought that some geese wereflying overhead.142 A NICE COMPANION FOR SUNDAY.The body was laid on the ground and four men kneeled uponthe bank as if in prayer. The boat meantime was unloading,men, women and children scrambling over the sides into theshallow water, and the donkeys, urged with blows, jumping afterthem. When they were all out the funeral took possession ofthe boat, and was slowly wafted across, as dismal a going to afuneral as if this were the real river of death. When themourners had landed we saw them walking under the palm-trees,to the distant burial-place in the desert, with a certain solemndignity, and the chanting and wailing were borne to us verydistinctly.It is nearly a dead calm all day, and our progress might beimperceptible to an eye naked, and certainly it must be so to theeyes of these natives which are full of flies. It grows warm,however, and is a summer temperature when we go ashore in theafternoon on a tour of exploration. We have for attendant,Ahmed, who carries a big stick as a defence against dogs. Ahmeddoes not differ much in appearance from a wild barbarian, hislack of a complete set of front teeth alone preventing him fromlooking fierce. A towel is twisted about his head, feet and legsare bare, and he wears a blue cotton robe with full sleeveslonger than his arms, gathered at the waist by a piece ofrope, and falling only to the knees. A nice person to go walkingwith on the Holy Sabbath.The whole land is green with young wheat, but the soil isbaked and cracked three or four inches deep, even close to theshore where the water has only receded two or three days ago.The land stretches for several miles, perfectly level and everyfoot green and smiling, back to the desert hills. Sprinkled overthis expanse, which is only interrupted by ditches and slightdykes upon which the people walk from village to village, arefrequent small groves of palms. Each grove is the nucleus of alittle settlement, a half dozen sun-baked habitations, wherepeople, donkeys, pigeons, and smaller sorts of animated naturelive together in dirty amity. The general plan of building is toerect a circular wall of clay six or seven feet high, which dries,hardens, and cracks in the sun. Thisis the Oriental court. In-PHILOSOPHICAL PEOPLE. 143side this and built against the wall is a low mud-hut with awooden door, and perhaps here and there are two similar huts, orhalfa dozen, according to the size ofthe family. In these hovelsthe floor is of smooth earth, there is a low bedstead or some matting laid in one corner, but scarcely any other furniture, exceptsome earthen jars holding doora or dried fruit, and a few cookingutensils. A people who never sit, except on their heels, do notneed chairs, and those who wear at once all the clothes theypossess need no closets or wardrobes. I looked at first for aplace where they could keep their " Sunday clothes " and " nicethings," but this philosophical people do not have anything thatis too good for daily use. It is nevertheless true that there isno hope of a people who do not have " Sunday clothes. "The inhabitants did not, however, appear conscious of anysuch want. They were lounging about or squatting in the dustin picturesque idleness; the children under twelve years oftenwithout clothes and not ashamed, and the women wearing noveils. The women are coming and going with the heavy waterjars, or sitting on the ground, sorting doora and preparing it forcooking; not prepossessing certainly, in their black or dingybrown gowns and shawls of cotton. Children abound. In allthe fields men are at work, picking up the ground with a rudehoe shaped like an adze. Tobacco plants have just been set out,and water-melons carefully shaded from the sun by little tentsof rushes. These men are all Fellaheen, coarsely and scantilyclad in brown cotton gowns, open at the breast. They are notbad figures, better than the women, but there is a hopelessacceptance of the portion of slaves in their bearing.We encountered a very different race further from theriver, where we came upon an encampment of Bedaween, ordesert Arabs, who hold themselves as much above the Fellaheen as the poor white trash used to consider itself above thenegroes in our Southern States. They pretend to keep theirblood pure by intermarrying only in desert tribes, andperhaps it is pure; so, I suppose, the Gipsies are pure bloodenough, but one would not like them for neighbors. TheseBedaween, according to their wandering and predatory habit,144 COMPLIMENTARY SPEECHES.have dropped down here from the desert to feed their littleflock of black sheep and give their lean donkeys a bite ofgrass. Their tents are merely strips of coarse brown cloth,probably camel's hair, like sacking, stretched horizontallyover sticks driven into the sand, so as to form a cover from thesun and a protection from the north wind. Underneath themare heaps of rags, matting, old clothes, blankets, mingledwith cooking- utensils and the nameless broken assortmentthat beggars usually lug about with them. Hens and lambsare at home there, and dogs, a small, tawny wolfish breed,abound. The Arabs are worthy of their dwellings, a dirty,thievish lot to look at, but, as I said, no doubt of pure blood,and having all the virtues for which these nomads have beencelebrated since the time when Jacob judiciously increasedhis flock at the expense of Laban.A half- naked boy of twelve years escorts us to the bank ofthe canal near which the tents are pitched, and we are metby the sheykh of the tribe, a more venerable and courtlyperson than the rest of these pure-blood masqueraders in rags,but not a whit less dirty. The fellaheen had paid no attentionto us; this sheykh looked upon himself as one of the proprietors of this world, and bound to extend the hospitalities ofthis portion of it to strangers. He received us with a certainformality. When two Moslems meet there is no end to theirformal salutation and complimentary speeches, which maycontinue as long as their stock of religious expressions holdsout. The usual first greeting is Es-selaam ' aleykoom, " peace beon you "; to which the reply is ' Aleykoom es-saalam, “ on you'be peace." It is said that persons of another religion, however,should never make use of this salutation to a Moslem, andthat the latter should not and will not return it. But wewere overflowing with charity and had no bigotry, and wentthrough Egypt salaaming right and left, sometimes getting noreply and sometimes a return, to our "peace be on you, " ofWa-'aleykoom, "and on you. "The salutations by gesture are as varied as those by speech.When Abd-el-Atti walked in Cairo with us, he constantlyBEDAWEEN AT THE CENTENNIAL. 145varied his gestures according to the rank of the people wemet. To an inferior he tossed a free salaam; an equal hesaluted by touching with his right hand in one rapid motionhis breast, lips, and head; to a superior he made the samemotion except that his hand first made a dip down to hisknees; and when he met a person of high rank the handscooped down to the ground before it passed up to the head..I flung a cheerful salaam at the sheykh and gave him theOriental salute, which he returned. We then shook hands,and the sheykh kissed his after touching mine, a token offriendship which I didn't know enough to imitate, not havingbeen brought up to kiss my own hand.“Anglais or Francaise? " asked the sheykh."No," I said, “ Americans.""Ah," he ejacul*ted, throwing back his head with anaspiration of relief, “ Melicans; tyeb (good)."A ring of inquisitive Arabs gathered about us and werespecially interested in studying the features and costume ofone of our party; the women standing further off and remaining closely veiled kept their eyes fixed on her. The sheykhinvited us to sit and have coffee, but the surroundings werenot tempting to the appetite and we parted with profusesalutations. I had it in mind to invite him to our Americancentennial; I should like to set him off against some of ourdirty red brethren of the prairies. I thought that if I couldtransport these Bedaween, tents, children, lauk, veiled women,donkeys, and all to the centennial grounds they would add amost interesting (if unpleasant) feature. But, then, I reflected,what is a centennial to this Bedawee whose ancestors wereas highly civilized as he is when ours were wading aboutthe fens with the Angles or burrowing in German forests.Besides, the Bedawee would be at a disadvantage whenaway from the desert, or the bank of this Nile whose unceasing flow symbolizes his tribal longevity.As we walk along through the lush - fields which thedespised Fellaheen are irritating into a fair yield of food, weare perplexed with the query, what is the use of the Bedaween 10146 KEEPING SUNDAY ON THE this world? They produce nothing. To be sure theyoccupy a portion of the earth that no one else would inhabit;they dwell on the desert. But there is no need of any onedwelling on the desert, especially as they have to come fromit to lievy contributions on industrious folds in order to live.At this stage of the inquiry, the philosopher asks, what is theuse of any one living?As no one could answer this, we waded the water where itwas shallow and crossed to a long island, such as the Nilefrequently leaves in its sprawling course. This island wasgreen from end to end, and inhabited more thickly than themain-land. We attracted a good deal of attention from themud-villages, and much anxiety was shown lest we shouldwalk across the wheat-fields. We expected that the dahabeëhwould come on and take us off, but its streamer did notadvance, and we were obliged to rewade the shallow channeland walk back to the starting - place. There was a Sundaycalm in the scene. At the rosy sunset the broad river shonelike a mirror and the air was soft as June. How strongis habit. Work was going on as usual, and there could havebeen no consent of sky, earth, and people, to keep Sunday, yetthere seemed to be the Sunday spell upon the landscape. Isuspect that people here have got into the way of keeping allthe days. The most striking way in which an American cankeep Sunday on the Nile is by not going gunning, not eventaking a "flyer " at a hawk from the deck of the dahabeëh.There is a chance for a tract on this subject.Let no one get the impression that we are idling away ourtime, because we are on Monday morning exactly where wewere on Sunday morning. We have concluded to " keep "another day. There is not a breath of wind to scatter the haze,thermometer has gone down, and the sun's rays are feeble.This is not our fault, and I will not conceal the adversecirc*mstances in order to give you a false impression of theNile.We are moored against the bank. The dragoman has goneon shore to shoot pigeons and buy vegetables. Our turkeys,THE LONG- legged CRANES. 147which live in cages on the stern-deck, have gone ashore and arestrutting up and down the sand; their gobble is a home soundand recalls New England. Women, as usual, singly and ingroups, come to the river to fill their heavy water-jars. Thereis a row of men and boys on the edge of the bank.Behind aretwo camels yoked wide apart drawing a plow. Our crew chaffthe shore people. The cook says to a girl,"You would make me a good wife; we will take you along. "Men, squatting on the bank say, " Take her along, she is of nouse. "Girl retorts, " You are not of more use than animals, you sitidle all day, while I bring water and grind the corn. "One is glad to see this assertion of the rights of women inthis region where nobody has any rights; and if we had a tractwe would leave it with her. Some good might be done bytravelers if they would distribute biscuit along the Nile, stampedin Arabic with the words, " Man ought to do half the work, " or,"Sisters rise! "In the afternoon we explore a large extent of country, mycompanion carrying a shot-gun for doves. These doves are infact wild pigeons, a small and beautiful pearly-grey bird. Theylive on the tops of the houses in nests formed for them by theinsertion of tiles or earthen pots in the mud-walls. Manyhouses have an upper story of this sort on purpose for thedoves; and a collection of mere mud-cabins so ornamented isa picturesque sight, under a palm-grove. Great flocks of thesebirds are flying about, and the shooting is permitted, away fromthe houses.We make efforts to get near the wild geese and the cranes,great numbers of which are sunning themselves on the sandbanks, but these birds know exactly the range of a gun, and flyat the right moment. A row of cranes will sometimes trifle withour feelings. The one nearest will let us approach almostwithin range before he lifts his huge wings and sails over theriver, the next one will wait for us to come a few steps furtherbefore he flies, and so on until the sand-spit is deserted ofthese long-legged useless birds. Hawks are flying about the148 BALMY NIGHTS IN WINTER.shore and great greyish crows, or ravens, come over the fieldsand light on the margin of sand-a most gentlemanly lookingbird, who is under a queer necessity of giving one hop before hecan raise himself in flight. Small birds, like sand-pipers, areflitting about the bank. The most beautiful creature, however,is a brown bird, his wing marked with white, long bill, headerect and adorned with a high tuft, as elegant as the blue-jay;the natives call it the crocodile's guide.We cross vast fields of wheat and of beans, the Arab " fool, "which are sown broadcast, interspersed now and then with amelon- patch. Villages, such as they are, are frequent; one ofthem has a mosque, the only one we have seen recently. Thewater for ablution is outside, in a brick tank sunk in the ground.A row of men are sitting on their heels in front of the mosque,smoking; some of them in white gowns, and fine- looking men.I hope there is some saving merit in this universal act of sittingon the heels, the soles of the feet flat on the ground; it is notan easy thing for a Christian to do, as he will find out by trying.¨Toward night a steamboat flying the star and crescent ofEgypt, with passengers on board, some of " Cook's personallyconducted, " goes thundering down stream, filling the air withsmoke and frightening the geese, who fly before it in vast clouds.I didn't suppose there were so many geese in the world.Truth requires it to be said that on Tuesday morning thedahabeëh holds about the position it reached on Sunday morning; we begin to think we are doing well not to loose anythingin this rapid current. The day is warm and cloudy, the wind isfrom the east and then from the south-east , exactly the direction:we must go. It is in fact a sirocco, and fills one with languor,which is better than being frost-bitten at home. The evening,with the cabin windows all open, is like one of those soft nightswhich come at the close of sultry northern days, in which thereis a dewy freshness. This is the sort of winter that we oughtto cultivate.During the day we attempt tracking two or three times, butwith little success; the wind is so strong that the boat is continually blown ashore. Tracking is not very hard for the passengers,ARISTOCRATIC INDIFFERENCE. 149and gives them an opportunity to study the bank and the peopleon it close at hand. A long cable fastened on the forward deckis carried ashore, and to the far end ten or twelve sailors attachthemselves at intervals by short ropes which press across thebreast. Leaning in a slant line away from the river, they walkat a snail's pace, a file of parti-colored raiment and glisteninglegs; occasionally bursting into a snatch of a song, they slowlypull the bark along. But obstructions to progress are many.A spit of sand will project itself, followed by deep water, throughwhich the men will have to wade in order to bring the boatround; occasionally the rope must be passed round trees whichoverhang the caving bank; and often freight-boats, tied to theshore, must be passed. The leisure with which the line iscarried outside another boat is amusing even in this land ofdeliberation. The groups on these boats sit impassive and lookat us with a kind of curiosity that has none of our eagerness init. The well-bred indifferent " stare " of these people, which isnot exactly brazen and yet has no element of emotion in it,would make the fortune of a young fellow in a London season.The Nubian boatmen who are tracking the freight-dahabeëhappear to have left their clothes in Cairo; they flop in and outof the water, they haul the rope along the bank, without consciousness apparently that any spectators are within miles; andthe shore-life goes on all the same, men sit on the banks, womencome constantly to fill their jars, these crews stripped to theirtoil excite no more attention than the occasional fish jumpingout ofthe Nile. The habit seems to be general of minding one'sown business.At early morning another funeral crossed the river to a desolateburial-place in the sand, the women wailing the whole distanceof the march; and the noise was more than before like the clangof wild geese. These women have inherited the Oriental art of"lifting up the voice, " and it adds not a little to the weirdnessof this ululation and screeching to think that for thousands ofyears the dead have been buried along this valley with exactlythe same feminine tenderness.These women wear black; all the countrywomen we have150 the home OF THE CROCODILE.seen are dressed in sombre gowns and shawls of black or deepblue-black; none of them have a speck of color in their raiment,not a bit of ribbon nor a bright kerchief, nor any relief to thedullness of their apparel. And yet they need not fear to makethemselves too attractive. The men wear all the colors that areworn; though the Fellaheen as a rule wear brownish garments,blue and white are not uncommon, and a white turban or a redfez, or a silk belt about the waist gives variety and agreeablerelief to the costumes. In this these people imitate that naturewhich we affect to admire, but outrage constantly. They imitatethe birds. The male birds have all the gay plumage; thefeathers ofthe females are sober and quiet, as befits their domesticposition. And it must be admitted that men need the aid ofgay dress more than women.The next morning when the sun shows over the eastern desert,the sailors are tracking, hauling the boat slowly along an ox- bowin the river, until at length the sail can catch the light westwind which sprang up with the dawn. When we feel that,the men scramble aboard, and the dahabeëh, like a duck thathas been loitering in an eddy for days, becomes instinct withlife and flies away to the cliffs opposite, the bluffs called GebelAboofayda, part of the Mokattam range that here rises precipitously from the river and overhangs it for ten or twelvemiles. I think these limestone ledges are two or three hundredfeet high. The face is scarred by the slow wearing of ages, andworn into holes and caves innumerable. Immense numbers ofcranes are perched on the narrow ledges of the cliff, and flocksof them are circling in front of it, apparently having nests there.As numerous also as swallows in a sand-bank is a species ofduck called the diver; they float in troops on the stream, orwheel about the roosting cranes.This is a spot famed for its sudden gusts of wind whichsometimes flop over the brink and overturn boats. It also is theresort of the crocodile, which seldom if ever comes lower downthe Nile now. But the crocodile is evidently shy of exhibiting himself, and we scan the patches of sand at the footof the rocks with our glasses for a long time in vain. TheA HERMIT'S CAVE. 151animal dislikes the puffing, swashing steamboats, and the rifleballs that passing travelers pester him with. At last we see ascaly log six or eight feet long close to the water under therock. By the aid of the glass it turns out to be a crocodile.He is asleep, and too far off to notice at all the volley of shotwith which we salute him. It is a great thing to say you saw acrocodile. It isn't much to see one.And yet the scaly beast is an interesting and appropriatefeature in such a landscape, and the expectation of seeing acrocodile adds to your enjoyment. On our left are theseimpressive cliffs; on the right is a level island. Half-nakedboys and girls are tending small flocks of black sheep on it.Abd-el-Atti raises his gun as if he would shoot the childrenand cries out to them, " lift up your arm, " words that thecrocodile hunter uses when he is near enough to fire, and wantsto attract the attention of the beast so that it will raise itsfore-paw to move off, and give the sportsman a chance at thevulnerable spot. The children understand the allusion and runlaughing away.Groups of people are squatting on the ground, doing nothing,waiting for nothing, expecting nothing; buffaloes and cattle arefeeding on the thin grass, and camels are kneeling near instately indifference; women in blue-black robes come-theeverlasting sight-to draw The hot sun bathes all.The whole passes in a dumbWe pass next the late residence of a hermit, a Moslem"welee" or holy man. On a broad ledge of the cliff, somethirty feet above the water, is a hut built of stone and plasterand whitewashed, about twelve feet high, the roof rounded likean Esquimau snow-hut and with a knob at the top. Here thegood man lived, isolated from the world , fed by the charity ofpassers- by, and meditating on his own holiness. Below him,out ofthe rock, with apparently no better means of support than,he had, grows an acacia-tree, now in yellow blossoms. Perhapsthe saint chewed the gum-arabic that oozed from it. Justabove, on the river, is a slight strip of soil , where he used toraise a few cucumbers and other cooling vegetables. The farm,152 CROCODILE-MUMMIES.which is no larger than two bed blankets, is deserted now. Thesaint died, and is buried in his house, in a hole excavated inthe rock, so that his condition is little changed, his house beinghis tomb, and the Nile still soothing his slumber.But if it is easy to turn a house into a tomb it is still easierto turn a tomb into a house. Here are two square-cut tombs inthe rock, of which a family has taken possession, the original"occupants probably having moved out hundreds of years ago.Smoke is issuing from one of them, and a sorry- looking womanis pulling dead grass among the rocks for fuel. There seems tobe no inducement for any one to live in this barren spot, butprobably rent is low. A little girl seven or eight years oldcomes down and walks along the bank, keeping up with theboat, incited of course by the universal expectation of backsheesh. She has on a head-veil, covering the back of the headand neck and a single shirt of brown rags hanging in strings.I throw her an apple, a fruit she has probably never seen,which she picks up and carries until she joined is by an eldersister, to whom she shows it. Neither seems to know what it is.The elder smells it, sticks her teeth into it, and then takes abite. The little one tastes, and they eat it in alternate bites,growing more and more eager for fair bites as the process goes on.Near the southern end of the cliffs of Gebel Aboofayda arethe crocodile-mummy pits which Mr. Prime explored; cavernsin which are stacked up mummied crocodiles and lizards by thethousands. We shall not go nearer to them. I dislike mummies; I loathe crocodiles; I have no fondness for pits. Whatcould be more unpleasant than the three combined! To crawlon one's stomach through crevices and hewn passages in therock, in order to carry a torch into a stifling chamber, packedwith mummies and cloths soaked in bitumen, is an exploit thatwe willingly leave to Egyptologists. If one takes a little pains,he can find enough unpleasant things above ground.It requires all our skill to work the boat round the bendabove these cliffs; we are every minute about to go aground ona sand-bar, or jibe the sail, or turn about. Heaven only knowshow we ever get on at all, with all the crew giving orders andTHE BOATMEN'S SONG. 153no one obeying. But by five o'clock we are at the large markettown of Manfaloot, which has half a dozen minarets and issheltered by a magnificent palm-grove. You seem to beapproaching an earthly paradise; and one can keep up theillusion if he does not go ashore. And yet this is a spot thatought to interest the traveler, for here Lot is said to havespent a portion of the years of his exile, after the accident tohis wife.At sunset old Abo Arab comes limping along the bankwith a tin pail, having succeeded at length in overtaking theboat; and in reply to the question, where he has been asleepall day, pulls out from his bosom nine small fish as apeace-offering. He was put off at sunrise to get milk forbreakfast. What a happy-go- lucky country it is.After sundown, the crew, who have worked hard all day, onand off, tacking, poling, and shifting sail, get their supperround an open fire on deck, take each some whiffs from the"hubble-bubble," and, as we sail out over the broad, smoothwater, sing a rude and plaintive melody to the subduedthump of the darabooka. Towards dark, as we are about totie up, the wind, which had failed, rises, and we voyage on,the waves rippling against the sides in a delicious lullaby.The air is soft, the moon is full and peeps out from the lightclouds which obscure the sky and prevent dew.The dragoman asleep on the cabin deck, the reïs crouched,attentive of the course, near him, part of the sailors groupedabout the bow in low chat, and part asleep in the shadow ofthe sail, we voyage along under the wide night, still to thesouth and warmer skies, and seem to be sailing through anenchanted land.Put not your trust in breezes. The morning finds us still adozen miles from Asioot where we desire to celebrate Christmas; we just move with sails up, and the crew poling. Thehead-man chants a line or throws out a word, and the restcome in with a chorus, as they walk along, bending theshoulder to the pole. The leader-the " shanty man" theEnglish sailors call their leader, from the French chanter I154 FURLING SAIL.suppose-ejacul*tes a phrase, sometimes prolonging it , ordwelling on it with a variation, like " O! Mohammed! " or" O! Howadji! " or some scraps from a love- song, and the menstrike in in chorus: " Hā Yālēsah, hā Yālēsah, " a response thatthe boatmen have used for hundreds of years.We sail leisurely past a large mud- village dropped in asplendid grove of palms and acacias. The scene is verypoetical before details are inspected, and the groves, wethink, ought to be the home of refinement and luxury. Menare building a boat under the long arcade of trees, womenare stooping with the eternal water-jars which do not appearto retain fluid any better than the sieves of the Danaïdes, andnaked children run along the bank crying " Backsheesh, OHowadji. " Our shot-gun brings down a pigeon-hawk closeto the shore. A boy plunges in and gets it, handing it to uson deck from the bank, but not relinquishing his hold withone hand until he feels the half-piastre in the other. So earlyis distrust planted in the human breast.Getting away from this idyllic scene, which has not a singleresemblance to any civilized town, we work our way up toEl Hamra late in the afternoon. This is the landing- placefor Asioot; the city itself is a couple of miles inland, andcould be reached by a canal at high water. We have comeagain into an active world, and there are evidences that this isa busy place. New boats are on the stocks, and there is aforge for making some sort of machinery. So much life hasnot been met with since we left Cairo. The furling our greatsail is a fine sight as we round in to the bank, the sailorscrawling out on the slender, hundred- feet- long yard, likemonkeys, and drawing up the hanging slack with both feetand hands.It is long since we have seen so many or so gaily dressedpeople as are moving on shore; a procession of camels passesalong; crowds of donkeys are pushed down to the boat bytheir noisy drivers; old women come to sell eggs, and whitegrease that pretends to be butter, and one of them pulls somelive pigeons from a bag. We lie at the mud- bank, andSEEING AND BEING seen. 155classes of half- clad children, squatting in the sand, study us.Two other dahabeëhs are moored near us, their passengerssitting under the awning and indolently observing the novelscene, book in hand, after the manner of Nile voyagers.These are the pictures constantly recurring on the river,only they are never the same in grouping or color, and theynever weary one. It is wonderful, indeed, how satisfying theNile is in itself and how little effort travelers make for thesociety of each other. Boats pass or meet and exchangesalutes, but with little more effusion than if they were on theThames. Nothing afloat is so much like a private house as adahabeëh, and I should think, by what we hear, that sociabilitydecreases on the Nile with increase of travel and luxury.

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PROBABLY this present writer has the distinction of beingthe only one who has written about the Nile and has notinvented a new way of spelling the name of the town whosemany minarets and brown roofs are visible over the meadows.It is written Asioot, Asyoot, Asiüt, Ssout, Siôout, Osyoot,Osioot, O'Sioót, Siüt, Sioot, O'siout, Si- ôôt, Siout, Syouth, and soon, indefinitely, People take the liberty to spell names as theysound to them, and there is consequently a pleasing variety inthe names of all places, persons, and things in Egypt; and whenweadd tothe many ways of spelling an Arabic word, the Frenchthe German, and the English translation or equivalent, you are ina hopeless jumble of nomenclature. The only course is to strikeout boldly and spell everything as it seems good in your eyes,and differently in different moods. Even the name of theProphet takes on half a dozen forms; there are not only ninetynine names of the atributes of God, but I presume there areninety-nine ways of spelling each of them.This Asioot has always been a place of importance. It wasof old called Lycopolis, its divinity being the wolf or the wolfheaded god; and in a rock-mountain behind the town werenot only cut the tombs of the inhabitants, but there were deposted the mummies of the sacred wolves. About these no one inAsioot knows or cares much, to day. It is a city of twenty- fivethousand people, with a good many thriving Copt Christians;the terminus, to day, ofthe railway, and the point of arrival anddeparture of the caravans to and from Darfoor-a desert march156CHRISTMAS ON THE NILE. 157of a month. Here are made the best clay pipe-bowls inEgypt, and a great variety of ornamented dishes and vasesin clay, which the traveler buys and doesn't know what to dowith. The artisans also work up elephants' tusks and ostrichfeathers into a variety of " notions. "Christmas day opens warm and with an air of festivity. Greatpalm-branches are planted along the bank and form an arborover the gang-plank. The cabin is set with them, in gothicarches over windows and doors, with yellow oranges at the apex.The forward and saloon decks are completely embowered inpalms, which also run up the masts and spars. The crew haveentered with zeal into the decoration, and in the early morningtransformed the boat into a floating bower of greenery; the effectis Oriental, but it is difficult to believe that this is really Christmasday. The weather is not right, for one thing. It is singularlypleasant, in fact like summer. We miss the usual snow and iceand the hurtling of savage winds that bring suffering to thepoor and make charity meritorious. Besides, the Moslems arecelebrating the day for us and, I fear, regarding it simply as anoccasion of backsheesh. The sailors are very quick to understand so much of our religion as is profitable to themselves.In such weather as this it would be possible for " shepherdsto watch their flocks by night. "Early in the day we have a visit from Wasef el Khyat, theAmerican consul here for many years, a Copt and a native ofAsioot, who speaks only Arabic; he is accompanied by oneof his sons, who was educated at the American college inBeyrout. So far does that excellent institution send itslight; scattered rays to be sure, but it is from it and such.schools that the East is getting the real impetus of civilization.I do not know what the consul at Asioot does for America,but our flag is of great service to him, protecting his propertyfrom the exactions of his own government. Wasef is consequently very polite to all Americans, and while he sippedcoffee and puffed cigars in our cabin he smiled unutterablethings. This is the pleasantest kind of intercourse in awarm climate, where a puff and an occasional smile willpass for profuse expressions of social enjoyment.158 OUR FIRST VISIT TO THE PASIA.His excellency Shakirr Pasha, the governor of this largeand rich province, has sent word that he is about to putcarriages and donkeys at our disposal, but this probablymeant that the consul would do it; and the consul has doneit. The carriage awaits us on the bank. It is a high, paneled,venerable ark, that moves with trembling dignity; and wechoose the donkeys as less pretentious and less liable to cometo pieces. This is no doubt the only carriage between Cairoand Kartoom, and its appearance is regarded as an event.Our first visit is paid to the Pasha, who has been only a fewdays in his province, and has not yet transferred his haremfrom Cairo. We are received with distinguished ceremony,to the lively satisfaction of Abd-el-Atti, whose face beamslike the morning, in bringing together such " distinguish "people as his friend the Pasha, and travelers in his charge.The Pasha is a courtly Turk, of most elegant manners, andthe simplicity of high breeding, a man of the world and oneof the ablest governors in Egypt. The room into which weare ushered, through a dirty alley and a mud-wall court ishardly in keeping with the social stilts on which we are allwalking. In our own less favored land, it would answer verywell for a shed or an out- house to store beans in, or for a"reception room " for sheep; a narrow oblong apartment,covered with a flat roof of palm logs, with a couple of dirtylittle windows high up, the once whitewashed walls stainedvariously, the cheap divans soiled.The hospitality of this gorgeous salon was offered us witheffusion, and we sat down and exchanged compliments as ifwe had been in a palace. I am convinced that there is nothinglike the Oriental imagination. An attendant (and the servantswere in keeping with the premises) brought in fingans ofcoffee. The servant presents the cup in his right hand,holding the bottom of the silver receptacle in his thumb andfinger; he takes it away empty with both hands, placing theleft under and the right on top of it. These formalities areuniversal and all- important. Before taking it you ought tomake the salutation, by touching breast, lips, and forehead,CONVERSATION UNder diffICULTIES DIFFICULT . 159with the right hand—an acknowledgment not to the servantbut to the master. Cigars are then handed round, for it isgetting to be considered on the Nile that cigars are more"swell " than pipes; more's the pity.The exchange of compliments meantime went on, and onthe part of the Pasha with a fineness, adroitness, and readinessthat showed the practice of a lifetime in social fence. Hesurpassed our most daring invention with a smiling ease, andtopped all our extravagances with an art that made our poorefforts appear clumsy. And what the effect would have beenif we could have understood the flowery Arabic I can onlyguess; nor can we ever know how many flowers of his ownthe dragoman cast in."His excellency say that he feel the honor of your visit.""Say to his excellency that although we are only spendingone day in his beautiful capital, we could not forego thepleasure of paying our respects to his excellency." Thissentence is built by the critic, and strikes us all favorably."His excellency himself not been here many days, andsorry he not know you coming, to make some preparations toreceive you."" Thank his excellency for the palms that decorate ourboat. ""They are nothing, nothing, he say not mention it; thedahabeëh look very different now if the Nile last summer hadnot wash away all his flower- garden. His excellency say, howyou enjoyed your voyage?""It has been very pleasant; only for a day or two we havewanted wind. ""Your misfortune, his excellency say, his pleasure; it givehim the opportunity of your society. But he say if you wantwind he sorry no wind; it cause him to suffer that you notcome here sooner. ""Will his excellency dine with us to-day? ""He say he think it too much honor. ""Assure his excellency that we feel that the honor isconferred by him."160 THE GHAWAZEES AT HOME.And he consents to come. After we have taken our leave,the invitation is extended to the consul, who is riding with us.The way to the town is along a winding, shabby embankment, raised above high water, and shaded with sycamoretrees. It is lively with people on foot and on donkeys, inmore colored and richer dress than that worn by countrypeople; the fields are green, the clover is springing luxuriantly, and spite ofthe wrecks of unburned-brick houses, leftgaping by the last flood, and spite of the general untidinessof everything, the ride is enjoyable. I don't know why it isthat an irrigated country never is pleasing on close inspection,neither is an irrigated garden. Both need to be seen from alittle distance, which conceals the rawness of the alternatelydry and soaked soil, the frequent thinness of vegetation, theunkempt swampy appearance of the lowest levels, and thepainful whiteness of paths never wet and the dustiness oftrees unwashed by rain. There is no Egyptian landscapeor village that is neat, on near inspection.Asioot has a better entrance than most towns, through anold gateway into the square (which is the court of the palace);and the town has extensive bazaars and some large dwellings.But as we ride through it, we are always hemmed in by mudwalls, twisting through narrow alleys, encountering dirt andpoverty at every step. We pass through the quarter of theGhawazees, who, since their banishment from Cairo, formlittle colonies in all the large Nile towns. There are thedancing-women whom travelers are so desirous of seeing; thefinest-looking women and the most abandoned courtesans,says Mr. Lane, in Egypt. In showy dresses of bright yellowand red, adorned with a profusion of silver-gilt necklaces,earrings, and bracelets, they sit at the doors of their hovels inidle expectation. If these happen to be the finest- lookingwomen in Egypt, the others are wise in keeping their veils on.Outside the town we find a very pretty cemetery of theEgyptian style, staring white tombs, each dead person restingunder his own private little stucco oven. Near it is encampeda caravan just in from Darfoor, bringing cinnamon, gum-SPECIMENS OF ANCIENT SCULPTURE. 161arabic, tusks, and ostrich feathers. The camels are worn withthe journey; their drivers have a fierce and free air in strikingcontrast with the bearing of the fellaheen. Their noses arestraight, their black hair is long and shaggy, their garment isa single piece of coarse brown cloth; they have the wildnessofthe desert.The soft limestone ledge back of the town is honeycombedwith grottoes and tombs; rising in tiers from the bottom tothe top. Some of them have merely square-cut entrances intoa chamber of moderate size, in some part of which, or in apassage beyond, is a pit cut ten or twenty feet deep in therock, like a grave, for the mummy. One of them has amagnificent entrance through a doorway over thirty feethigh and fifteen deep; upon the jambs are gigantic figures cutin the rock. Some of the chambers are vast and were oncepillared, and may have served for dwellings. These excavations are very old. The hieroglyphics and figures on thewalls are not in relief on the stone, but cut in at the outeredge and left in a gradual swell in the center—an intagliorelievato. The drawing is generally spirited, and the figuresshow knowledge of form and artistic skill . It is wonderfulthat such purely conventional figures, the head almost alwaysin profile and the shoulders square to the front, can be soexpressive. On one wall is a body of infantry marching,with the long pointed shields mentioned by Xenophon indescribing Egyptian troops. Everywhere are birds, gracefullydrawn and true to species, and upon some of them the bluecolor is fresh. A ceiling of one grotto is wrought in ornamental squares-a " Greek pattern," executed long before thetime of the Greeks. Here we find two figures with the fullface turned towards us, instead of the usual profile.These tombs have served for a variety of purposes. Aslong as the original occupants rested here, no doubt theirfriends came and feasted and were mournfully merry in thesesightly chambers overlooking the Nile. Long after theywere turned out, Christian hermits nested in them, during,that extraordinary period of superstition when men thought11162 TWISTS AND TURNS OF THE RIVER.At least, hethey could best secure their salvation by living like wildbeasts in the deserts of Africa. Here one John of Lycopolishad his den, in which he stayed fifty years, without everopening the door or seeing the face of a woman.enjoyed that reputation. Later, persecuted Christians dweltin these tombs, and after them have come wanderers, andjackals, and houseless Arabs. I think I should rather livehere than in Asioot; the tombs are cleaner and better builtthan the houses of the town, and there is good air here andno danger of floods.When we are on the top of the bluff, the desert in brokenridges is behind us. The view is one of the best of the usualviews from hills near the Nile, the elements of which aresimilar; the spectator has Egypt in all its variety at his feet.The valley here is broad, and we look a long distance up anddown the river. The Nile twists and turns in its bed like oneof the chimerical serpents sculptured in the chambers of thedead; canals wander from it through the plain; and grovesof palms and lines of sycamores contrast their green with thatof the fields. All this level expanse is now covered with .wheat, barley and thick clover, and the green has a vividnessthat we have never seen in vegetation before. This owessomewhat to the brown contrast near at hand and somethingmaybe to the atmosphere, but I think the growing grain hasa lustre unknown to other lands. This smiling picture isenclosed by the savage frame of the desert, gaunt ridges ofrocky hills, drifts of stones, and yellow sand that sends itshot tongues in long darts into the plain. At the foot of themountain lies Asioot brown as the mud of the Nile, a citybuilt of sun-dried bricks, but presenting a singular and notunpleasing appearance on account of the dozen white stoneminarets, some of them worked like lace, which spring out ofit.The consul's home is one of the best in the city, but outsideit shows only a mud-wall like the meanest. Within is apaved court, and offices about it; the rooms above are large,many-windowed, darkened with blinds, and not unlike thoseof a plain house in America. The furniture is EuropeanTHE PASHA'S CHRISTMAS DINNER. 163mainly, and ugly, and of course out of place in Africa. Wesee only the male members of the family. Confectionery andcoffee are served and some champagne, that must have beenmade by the Peninsular and Oriental Steamship Company;their champagne is well known in the Levant, and there is noknown decoction that is like it. In my judgment, if it isproposed to introduce Christianity and that kind of wine intoEgypt, the country would better be left as it is.During our call the consul presents us fly- whisks with ivoryhandles, and gives the ladies beautiful fans of ostrich feathersmounted in ivory. These presents may have been due to abroad hint from the Pasha, who said to the consul at ourinterview in the morning:-"I should not like to have these distinguished strangers goaway without some remembrance of Asioot. I have not beenhere long; what is there to get for them? ""O, your excellency, I will attend to that," said the consul.In the evening, with the dahabeëh beautifully decorated andhung with colored lanterns, upon the deck, which, shut inwith canvas and spread with Turkish rugs, was a finereception-room, we awaited our guests, as if we had beenaccustomed to this sort of thing in America from our infancy,and as if we usually celebrated Christmas outdoors, fans inhand, with fire-works. A stand for the exhibition of fireworks had been erected on shore. The Pasha was receivedas he stepped on board, with three rockets, (that being, Isuppose, the number of his official " tails,") which flew upinto the sky and scattered their bursting bombs of color amidthe stars, announcing to the English dahabeëhs, the two steamboats and the town of Asioot, that the governor of therichest province in Egypt was about to eat his dinner.The dinner was one of those perfections that one likes to speakof only in confidential moments to dear friends. It wantednothing either in number of courses or in variety, in meats, inconfections, in pyramids of gorgeous construction, in fruits andflowers. There was something touching about the lamb roastedwhole, reclining his head on his own shoulder. There was161 THE KHEDive's fiRE-WORKS.something tender about the turkey. There was a terriblemoment when the plum- pudding was borne in on fire , as if ithad been a present from the devil himself. The Pasha regardedit with distrust, and declined, like a wise man, to eat flame. Ifear that the English have fairly introduced this dreadful dishinto the Orient, and that the natives have come to think that allforeigners are Molochs who can best be pleased by offering upto them its indigestible ball set on fire of H. It is a fearfulspectacle to see this heathen people offering this incense to aforeign idol, in the subserviency which will sacrifice even religionto backsheesh.The conversation during dinner is mostly an exchange ofcompliments, in the art of which the Pasha is a master, displaying in it a wit, a variety of resource and a courtliness that makethe game a very entertaining one. The Arabic language givesfull play to this sort of social espiégleriè, and lends a delicacy toencounters of compliment which the English language does notadmit.Coffee and pipes are served on deck, and the fire- works beginto tear and astonish the night. The Khedive certainly employsvery good pyrotechnists, and the display by Abd-el-Atti andhis equally excited helpers, although simple is brilliant. Theintense delight that the soaring and bursting of a rocket give toAbd-el-Atti is expressed in unconscious and unrestrained demonstration. He might be himself in flames but he would watchthe flight of the rushing stream of fire , jumping up and downin his anxiety for it to burst:-"There! there! that's-a he, hooray! "Every time one bursts, scattering its colored stars, the crew,led by the dragoman, cheer,"Heep, heep, hooray! heep, heep, hooray! "A whirligig spins upon the river, spouting balls of fire, andthe crew come in with a " Heep, heep, hooray! heep, heep,hooray! "The steamer, which has a Belgian prince on board, illuminates,and salutes with shot-guns. In the midst of a fusillade ofrockets and Roman candles, the crew develope a new accom-CHRISTMAS EVENING ON THE NILE.165plishment. Drilled by the indomitable master of ceremonies,they attempt the first line of that distinctively American melody,"We won't go home till morning. "They really catch the air, and make a bubble, bubble of sounds,like automata, that somewhat resembles the words. Probablythey think that it is our national anthem, or perhaps a Christmas hymn. No doubt, " won't-go-home-till- morning " sort ofAmericans have been up the river before us.The show is not over when the Pasha pleads an engagementto take a cup of tea withthe Belgian prince, and asks permissionto retire. He expresses his anguish at leaving us, and he willnot depart if we say " no. " Of course, our anguish in lettingthe Pasha go exceeds his suffering in going, but we sacrificeourselves to the demand of his station, and permit himto depart.At the foot of the cabin stairs he begs us to go no further,insisting that we do him too much honor to come so far.The soft night grows more brilliant . Abd-el- Atti and hisminions are still blazing away. The consul declares that Asiootin all his life has never experienced a night like this. Weexpress ourselves as humbly thankful in being the instruments ofgiving Asioot (which is asleep there two miles off) such an' eye-opener. " (This remark has a finer sound when translatedinto Arabic. )46The spectacle closes by a voyage out upon the swift river inthe sandal. We take Roman candles, blue, red, and greenlights and floaters which Abd- el- Atti lets off, while the crewhoarsely roar, " We won't go home till morning," and mingle"Heep, heep, hooray," with " Hā Yālēsah, hā Vālēsah. "The long range of lights on the steamers, the flashing linesand pyramids of colors on our own dahabeëh, the soft June- likenight, the moon coming up in fleecy clouds, the broad Nilesparkling under so many fires, kindled on earth and in the sky,made a scene unique, and as beautiful as any that the ArabianNights suggest.To end all, there was a hubbub on shore among the crew,caused by one of them who was crazy with hasheesh, and threat-166 "A GLORIOUS VICTORY."ened to murder the reïs and dragoman, if he was not permittedto go on board. It could be demonstrated that he was lesslikely to slay them if he did not come on board, and he wastherefore sent to the governor's lock- up, with a fair prospect ofgoing intothe Khedive's army. We left him behind, and aboutone o'clock in the morning stole away up the river with a gentle.and growing breezeNet result of pleasure:-one man in jail, and Abd- el-Atti'swrist so seriously burned by the fire-works, that he has no useof his arm for weeks. But, " twas a glorious victory. " For aChristmas, however, it was a little too much like the Fourth ofJuly.



AS WE sail down into the heart of Egypt and into theremote past, living in fact, by books and by eye- sight, ineras so far-reaching that centuries count only as years inthem, the word " ancient " gets a new signification . We passevery day ruins, ruins of the Old Empire, of the Middle Empire,of the Ptolomies, of the Greeks, of the Romans, of the Christians,of the Saracens; but nothing seems ancient to us any longerexcept the remains of Old Egypt.We have come to have a singular contempt for anything somodern as the work of the Greeks, or Romans. Ruins pointedout on shore as Roman, do not interest us enough to force us toraise the field- glass. Small antiquities that are ofthe Romanperiod are not considered worth examination. The nativeshave a depreciatory shrug when they say of an idol or a brickwall, " Roman! 'The Greeks and the Romans are moderns like ourselves.They are as broadly separated in the spirit of their life andculture from those ancients as we are; we can understand them;it is impossible for us to enter into the habits of thought andof life of the early Pharaonic times. When the variation of twothousand years in the assignment of a dynasty seems to us atrifle , the two thousand years that divide us and the Romansshrink into no importance.In future ages the career of the United States and of Romewill be reckoned in the same era; and children will be taughtthe story of George Washington suckled by the wolf, and167168 A VISIT FROM A SHABBY SHEYKH.Romulus cutting the cherry-tree with his little hatchet. Wemust have distance in order to put things in their properrelations. In America, what have we that will endure a thousandyears? Even George Washington's hatchet may be forgottensooner than the flabellum of Pharaoh.The day after Christmas we are going with a stiff wind , sofresh that we can carry only the forward sail. The sky iscloudy and stormy- looking. It is in fact as disagreeable and assour a fall day as you can find anywhere. We keep the cabin,except for a time in the afternoon , when it is comfortable sittingon deck in an overcoat. We fly by Abooteeg; Raáineh a morepicturesque village, the top of every house being a pigeon- tower;Gow, with its remants of old Antæopolis-it was in the riverhere that Horus defeated Typhon in a great battle, as, thankGod! he is always doing in this flourishing world, with a goodchance of killing him outright some day, when Typhon will nomore take the shape of crocodile or other form of evil, war, orpaper currency; Tahtah, conspicuous by its vast mounds of anancient city; and Gebel Sheykh Hereédee, near the high cliffsof which we run, impressed by the grey and frowning crags.As we are passing these rocks a small boat dashes out to ourside, with a sail in tatters and the mast carrying a curiouslyembroidered flag, the like of which is in no signal-book. In thestern of this fantastic craft sits a young and very shabbily cladSheykh, and demands backsheesh, as if he had a right to demandtoll of all who pass his dominions. This right our reïs acknowledges and tosses him some paras done up in a rag. I am sure Ilike this sort of custom-house better than some I have seen.We go on in the night past Soohag, the capital of the provinceof Girgeh; and by other villages and spots of historic interest,where the visitor will find only some heaps of stones and rubbishto satisfy a curiosity raised by reading of their former importance;by the White Monastery and the Red Convent; and, cominground a bend, as we always are coming round a bend, andbringing the wind ahead, the crew probably asleep; we ignominiously run into the bank, and finally come to anchor in midstream .NIGHT BENEATH THE STARS OF EGYPT. 169As if to crowd all weathers into twenty-four hours, it clears offcold in the night; and in the morning when we are opposite thethe pretty town of Ekhmeem, a temperature of 51 ° makes it ratherfresh for the men who line the banks working the shadoofs, withno covering but breech-cloths. The people here, when it is cold,bundle up about the head and shoulders with thick wraps, andleave the feet and legs bare. The natives are huddled inclusters on the bank, out of the shade of the houses, in order toget the warmth of the sun; near one group a couple of discontented camels kneel; and the naked boy, making no pretenceof a superfluous wardrobe by hanging his shirt on a bush whilehe goes to bed, is holding it up to dry.We skim along in almost a gale the whole day, passing, in theafternoon, an American dahabeëh tied up, repairing a brokenyard, and giving Bellianeh the go-by as if it were of no importance. And yet this is the landing for the great Abydus, a cityonce second only to Thebes, the burial-place of Osiris himself,and still marked by one of the finest temples in Egypt. But ourbusiness now is navigation, and we improve the night as well asthe day; much against the grain of the crew. There is alwaysmore or less noise and row in a night-sail, going aground,splashing, and boosting in the water to get off, shouting andchorusing and tramping on deck, and when the thermometer isas low as 52 ° these night-baths are not very welcome whenfollowed by exposure to keen wind, in a cotton shirt. And withthe dragoman in bed, used up like one of his burnt-out rockets,able only to grumble at " dese fellow care for nothing but smokehasheesh," the crew are not very subordinate. They are liableto go to sleep and let us run aground, or they are liable to runaground in order that they may go to sleep. They seem to tryboth ways alternately.But moving or stranded, the night is brillant all the same; thenight-skies are the more lustrous the farther we go from themoisture of Lower Egypt, and the stars scintillate with splendor,and flash deep colors like diamonds in sunlight.rises over the mountains under which we areLate, the moonsailing, and theeffect is magically lovely. We are approaching Farshoot.170 A VISIT FROM THE BEY.Farshoot is a market-town and has a large sugar-factory, thefirst set up in Egypt, built by an uncle of the Khedive. It wasthe seat of power of the Howara tribe of Arabs, and famous forits breed of Howara horses and dogs, the latter bigger and fiercerthan the little wolfish curs with which Egypt swarms. It is muchlike other Egyptian towns now, except that its inhabitants, likeits dogs, are a little wilder and more ragged than the fellaheenbelow. This whole district of Hamram is exceedingly fertileand bursting with a tropical vegetation.The Turkish governor pays a formal visit and we enjoy one ofthose silent and impressive interviews over chibooks and coffee;in which nothing is said that one can regret. We finally makethe governor a complimentary speech, which Hoseyn, who onlyknows a little table-English, pretends to translate. The Beyreplies, talking very rapidly for two or three minutes. When weasked Hoseyn to translate, he smiled and said—“ Thank youwhich was no doubt the long palaver.The governor conducts us through the sugar-factory, which isnot on so grand a scale as those we shall see later, but hotenough and sticky enough, and then gives us the inevitablecoffee in his office; seemingly, if you clap your hands anywherein Egypt, a polite and ragged attendant will appear with a tinycup of coffee.The town is just such a collection of mud- hovels as the others,and we learn nothing new in it. Yes, we do. We learn how toscour brass dishes. We see at the doorway of a house where agroup of women sit on the ground waiting for their hair to grow,two boys actively engaged in this scouring process. They stand inthe dishes, which have sand in them, and, supporting themselvesby the side of the hut, whirl half-way round and back. Thesoles of their feet must be like leather. This method of scouring is worth recording, as it may furnish an occupation for boysat an age when they are usually, and certainly here, useless .The weekly market is held in the open air at the edge of thetown. The wares for sale are spread upon the ground, thepeople sitting behind them in some sort of order, but the crowdsurges everywhere and the powdered dust rises in clouds. It isIN THE MARKET-PLACE. 171the most motley assembly we have seen. The women are tattooedon the face and on the breast; they wear anklets of bone and ofsilver, and are loaded with silver ornaments. As at every otherplace where a fair, a wedding, or a funeral attracts a crowd,there are some shanties of the Ghawazees, who are physicallysuperior to the other women, but more tattooed, their necks,bosoms and waists covered with their whole fortune in silver,their eyelids heavily stained with Kohl-bold -looking jades, whocome out and stare at us with a more than masculine impudence.The market offers all sorts of green country produce, andeggs, corn, donkeys, sheep, lentils, tobacco, pipe-stems, andcheap ornaments in glass. The crowd hustles about us in atroublesome manner, showing special curiosity about the ladies,as if they had rarely seen white women. Ahmed and anothersailor charge into them with their big sticks to open a passagefor us, but they follow us, commenting freely upon our appearance.The sailors jabber at them and at us, and are anxious to get usback to the boat; where we learn that the natives " not likeyou. " The feeling is mutual, though it is discouraging to ourpride to be despised by such barbarous half-clad folk.Beggars come to the boat continually for backsheesh; a talljuggler in a white, dirty tunic , with a long snake coiled abouthis neck, will not go away for less than half a piastre . Onetariff piastre (five cents) buys four eggs here, double the price offormer years, but still discouraging to a hen. However, thehens have learned to lay their eggs small. All the morning weare trading in the desultory way in which everything is donehere, buying a handful of eggs at a time, and live chickens bythe single one.In the afternoon the boat is tracked along through a land thatis bursting with richness, waving with vast fields of wheat, oflentils, of sugar-cane, interspersed with melons and beans. Thedate-palms are splendid in stature and mass of crown. Weexamine for the first time the Dôm Palm, named from its shape,which will not flourish much lower on the river than here. Itsstem grows up a little distance and then branches in two, andthese two limbs each branch in two; always in two. The leaves172 WORKING A SAKIYA.are shorter than those of the date- palm and the tree is altogethermore scraggy, but at a little distance it assumes the dome form.The fruit, now green; hangs in large bunches a couple of feetlong; each fruit is the size of a large Flemish Beauty pear. Ithas a thick rind, and a stone, like vegetable ivory, so hard thatit is used for drill-sockets. The fibrous rind is gnawed off bythe natives when it is ripe and is said to taste like gingerbread.These people live on gums and watery vegetables and fibrousstuff that wouldn't give a northern man strength enough togather them .We find also the sont acacia here, and dig the gum- arabicfrom its bark. In the midst of a great plain of wheat, intersectedby ditches and raised footways we come upon a Sakiya,embowered in trees, which a long distance off makes itselfknown by the most doleful squeaking. These water-wheels,which are not unlike those used by the Persians, are not oftenseen lower down the river, where the water is raised by theshadoof. Here we find a well sunk to the depth of the Nile,and bricked up. Over it is a wheel, upon which is hung anendless rope of palm fibres and on its outer rim are tied earthenjars. As the wheel revolves these jars dip into the well andcoming up discharge the water into a wooden trough, whence itflows into channels of earth. The cogs of this wheel fit intoanother, and the motive power of the clumsy machine isfurnished by a couple of oxen or cows, hitched to a pole swinginground an upright shaft. A little girl, seated on the end of thepole is driving the oxen, whose slow hitching gait, sets themachine rattling and squeaking as if in pain, Nothing is exactlyin gear, the bearings are never oiled; half the water is spilledbefore it gets to the trough; but the thing keeps grinding on,night and day, and I suppose has not been improved or changedin its construction for thousands, of years.During our walk we are attended by a friendly crowd of menand boys; there are always plenty of them who are as idle aswe are, and are probably very much puzzled to know why weroam about in this way. I am sure a New England farmer, ifhe saw a troop of these Arabs, strolling through his corn-field,would set his dogs on them." THE NILE IS EGYPT." 173Both sides of the river are luxuriant here. The oppositebank, which is high, is lined with shadoofs, generally in sets ofthree, in order to raise the water to the required level. Theview is one long to remember:--the long curving shore, withthe shadoofs and the workmen, singing as they dip; people inflowing garments moving along the high bank, and processions.of donkeys and camels as well; rows of palms above them, andbeyond the purple Libyan hills, in relief against a rosy sky,slightly clouded along the even mountain line. In the foreground the Nile is placid and touched with a little color.We feel more and more that the Nile is Egypt. Everythingtakes place on its banks. From our boat we study its life at ourleisure . The Nile is always vocal with singing, or scolding, orcalling to prayer; it is always lively with boatmen or workmen,or picturesque groups, or women filling their water-jars. It isthe highway; it is a spectacle a thousand miles long. It supplieseverything. I only wonder at one thing. Seeing that it is soswift, and knowing that it flows down and out into a worldwhence so many wonders come, I marvel that its inhabitants arecontented to sit on its banks year after year, generation aftergeneration, shut in behind and before by desert hills, withoutany desire to sail down the stream and get into a larger world.We meet rather intelligent men who have never journeyed sofar as the next large town.Thus far we have had only a few days of absolutely cloudlessskies; usually we have some clouds, generally at sunrise andsunset, and occasionally an overcast day like this. But thecloudiness is merely a sort of shade; there is no possibility ofrain in it.And sure of good weather, why should we hasten? In fact,we do not. It is something to live a life that has in it neitherworry nor responsibility. We take an interest, however, in Howand Disnah and Fow, places where people have been living anddying now for a long time, which we cannot expect you to share.In the night while we are anchored a breeze springs up, andAbd-el-Atti roars at the sailors , to rouse them, but unsuccessfully,until he cries,174 EASE AND ENJOYMENT."Come to prayer! "The sleepers, waking, answer,"God is great, and Mohammed is his prophet. "They then get up and set the sail. This is what it is to carryreligion into daily life.To-day we have been going northward, for variety. Keneh,which is thirty miles higher up the river than How, is nineminutes further north. The Nile itself loiters through theland. As the crew are poling slowly along this hot summer day,we have nothing to do but to enjoy the wide and glassy Nile, itsfertile banks vocal with varied life. The songs of Nubianboatmen, rowing in measured stroke down the stream, come tous. The round white wind- mills of Keneh are visible on thesand-hills above the town. Children are bathing and cattle anddonkeys wading in the shallows, and the shrill chatter of womenis heard on the shore. If this is winter, I wonder what summerhere is like.



WHETHER we go north or south, or wait for somewandering, unemployed wind to take us round the nextbend, it is all the same to us. We have ceased tocare much for time, and I think we shall adopt the Assyriansystem of reckoning.66The period of the precession of the equinoxes was regardedas one day of the life of the universe; and this day equals43,200 of our years. This day, of 43,200 years, the Assyrians.divided into twelve cosmic hours or sars," each one of 3,600years; each of these hours into six " ners, " of 600 years; andthe "ner " into ten " sosses or cosmic minutes, of 600 years.And thus, as we reckon sixty seconds to a minute, our ordinaryyear was a second of the great chronological period . What thenis the value of a mere second of time? What if we do lie half aday at this bank, in the sun, waiting for a lazy breeze? Therecertainly is time enough, for we seem to have lived a cosmichour since we landed in EgyptWeOne sees here what an exaggerated importance we are accustomed to attach to the exact measurement of time.constantly compare our watches, and are anxious that theyshould not gain or lose a second. A person feels his ownimportance somehow increased if he owns an accurate watch.There is nothing that a man resents more than the disparagementof his watch. (It occurs to me, by the way, that the superiorattractiveness of women, that quality of repose and rest whichthe world finds in them, springs from the same amiable laisser175176 where the EARTHEN JARS ARE MADE.aller that suffers their watches never to be correct. When theday comes that women's watches keep time, there will be nopeace in this world) . When two men meet, one of the mostfrequent interchanges of courtesies is to compare watches;certainly, if the question of time is raised, as it is sure to beshortly among a knot of men with us, every one pulls out hiswatch, and comparison is made.We are, in fact, the slaves of time and of fixed times. Wethink it a great loss and misfortune to be without the correcttime; and if we are away from the town-clock and the noongun, in some country place, we importune the city stranger,who appears to have a good watch, for the time; or we lie inwait for the magnificent conductor of the railway express, whoalways has the air ofgetting the promptest time from headquarters.Here in Egypt we see how unnatural and unnecessary thisanxiety is. Why should we care to know the exact time? It is12 o'clock, Arab time, at sunset, and that shifts every evening,in order to wean us from the rigidity of iron habits. Time isflexible, it waits on our moods and we are not slaves to itsaccuracy. Watches here never agree, and no one cares whetherthey do or not. My own, which was formerly as punctual as thestars in their courses, loses on the Nile a half hour or threequarters or an hour a day (speaking in our arbitrary, artificialmanner); so that, if I were good at figures, I could cypher outthe length of time, which would suffice by the loss of time bymy watch, to set me back into the age of Thothmes III. —avery good age to be in. We are living now by great cosmicperiods, and have little care for minute divisions of time.This morning we are at Ballás, no one knows how, for weanchored three times in the night. At Ballás are made the bigearthen jars which the women carry on their heads, and whichare sent from here the length of Egypt. Immense numbersof them are stacked upon the banks, and boat-loads of themare waiting for the wind. Rafts of these jars are made andfloated down to the Delta; a frail structure, one would say, inthe swift and shallow Nile, but below this place there areneither rocks in the stream nor stones on the shore.COMING TO ANCHOR. 177The sunrise is magnificent, opening a cloudless day, a day ofhot sun, in which the wheat on the banks and under the palmgroves, now knee-high and a vivid green, sparkles as if it haddew on it. At night there are colors of salmon and rose in thesky, and on the water; and the end of the mountain, whereThebes lies, takes a hue of greyish or pearly pink. Thebes!And we are really coming to Thebes! It is fit that it shouldlie in such a bath of color. Very near to- night seems thatgreat limestone ledge in which the Thebans entombed theirdead; but it is by the winding river thirty miles distant.The last day of the year 1874 finds us lounging about in thispleasant Africa, very much after the leisurely manner of anancient maritime expedition, the sailors of which spent most oftheir time in marauding on shore, watching for auguries, andsailing a little when the deities favored. The attempts, thefailures, the mismanagements of the day add not a little to yourentertainment on the Nile.In the morning a light breeze springs up and we are slowlycrawling forward, when the wind expires, and we come toanchor in mid-stream. The Nile here is wide and glassy, but itis swift, and full of eddies that make this part of the riverexceedingly difficult of navigation. We are too far from theshore for tracking, and another resource is tried. The sandalis sent ahead with an anchor and a cable, the intention being todrop the anchor and then by the cable pull up to it, and repeatthe process until we get beyond these eddies and treacheroussand-bars.Of course the sailors in the sandal, who never think of twothings at the same time, miscalculate the distance, and afterthey drop the anchor, have not rope enough to get back to thedahabeëh. There they are, just above us, and just out of reach,in a most helpless condition, but quite resigned to it . Aftervarious futile experiments they make a line with their trackingcords and float an oar to us, and we send them rope to lengthentheir cable. Nearly an hour is consumed in this. When thecable is attached, the crew begin slowly to haul it in through thepullies, walking the short' deck in a round and singing a chorus.12178 PREPARING FOR THE NEW YEAR.of, " O Mohammed" to some catch-word or phrase ofthe leader.They like this, it is the kind of work that boys prefer, a sort offrolic:-"Allah, Allah! "And in response,"O Mohammed!""God forgive us! "“O Mohammed! ""Godis most great! ""O Mohammed!""El Hoseyn! ""O Mohammed!”And so they go round as hilarious as if they played at leapfrog, with no limit of noise and shouting. They cannot haul arope or pull an oar without this vocal expression. When theanchor is reached it is time for the crew to eat dinner.We make not more than a mile all day, with hard work, butwe reach the shore. We have been two days in this broad,beautiful bend of the river, surrounded by luxuriant fields andpalm-groves, the picture framed in rosy mountains of limestone,which glow in the clear sunshine. It is a becalmment in anenchanted place, out of which there seems to be no way, and ifthere were we are loosing the desire to go. At night, as we lieat the bank, a row of ragged fellaheen line the high shore, likebuzzards, looking down on us. There is something admirablein their patience, the only virtue they seem to practice.Later, Abd-el-Atti is thrown into a great excitement uponlearning that this is the last day of the year. He had set hisheart on being at Luxor, and celebrating the New Year with agrand illumination and burst of fire-works. If he had his waywe should go blazing up the river in a perpetual fizz of pyrotechnic glory. At Luxor especially, where many boats are usuallygathered, and which is for many the end ofthe voyage, the dragomans like to outshine each other in display. This is the fashionable season at Thebes, and the harvest-time of its merchants ofantiquities; entertainments are given on shore, boats are illuminated, and there is a general rivalry in gaiety. Not to be inCUT OFF FROM THE WORLD. 179Thebes on NewYear's is a misfortune. Something must be done.The Sheykh of the village of Tookh is sent for, in the hope thathe can help as round the bend. The Sheykh comes, and sits onthe deck and smokes. Orion also comes up the eastern sky, likea conqueror, blazing amid a blazing heaven. But we don't stir.Upon the bank sits the guard of men from the village, toprotect us; the sight of the ragamuffins grouped round theirlanterns is very picturesque. Whenever we tie up at night weare obliged to procure from the Sheykh of the nearest village aguard to keep thieves from robbing us, for the thieves are notonly numerous but expert all along the Nile. No wonder.They have to steal their own crops, in order to get a fair shareof the produce of the land they cultivate under the exactions ofthe government. The Sheykh would not dare to refuse theguard asked for. The office of Sheykh is still hereditary fromfather to eldest son, and the Sheykh has authority over his ownvillage, according to the ancient custom, but he is subject to aBey, set by the government to rule a district.New Year's morning is bright, sparkling, cloudless. WhenI look from my window early, the same row of buzzards siton the high bank, looking down upon our deck and peeringinto our windows. Brown, ragged heaps of humanity; Isuppose they are human. One of the youngsters makesmouths and faces at me; and, no doubt, despises us, as dogsand unbelievers. Behold our critic: -he has on a singlecoarse brown garment, through which his tawny skin spots, and he squats in the sand.What can come out of such a people? Their ignoranceexceeds their poverty; and they appear to own nothing savea single garment. They look not ill-fed, but ill-conditioned,And the country is skinned; all the cattle, the turkeys, thechickens are lean. The fatness of the land goes elsewhere.In what contrast are these people, in situation, in habits, inevery thought, to the farmers of America. This Nile valleyis in effect cut off from the world; nothing of what we callnews enters it, no news, or book, no information of othercountries, nor of any thought, or progress, or occurences.180 "SMIT'S" COPPER POPULARITY.These people have not, in fact, the least conception of whatthe world is; they know no more of geography than they doof history. They think the world is flat, with an ocean ofwater round it. Mecca is the center. It is a religious necessity that the world should be flat in order to have Mecca itscenter. All Moslems believe that it is flat, as a matter offaith, though a few intelligent men know better.These people, as I say, do not know anything, as we estimate knowledge. And yet these watchmen and the groupon the bank talked all night long; their tongues were racingincessantly, and it appeared to be conversation and not monologue or narration. What could they have been talking about?Is talk in the inverse ratio of knowledge, and do we lose thepower or love for mere talk, as we read and are informed?These people, however, know the news ofthe river. Thereis a sort of freemasonry of communication by which whateveroccurs is flashed up and down both banks. They know allabout the boats and who are on them, and the name of thedragomans, and hear of all the accidents and disasters.There was an American this year on the river, by the nameof Smith-not that I class the coming of Smith as a disasterwho made the voyage on a steamboat. He did not care muchabout temples or hieroglyphics, and he sought to purchase noantiquities. He took his enjoyment in another indulgence.Having changed some of his pounds sterling into copperparas, he brought bags of this money with him. When theboat stopped at a town, Smith did not go ashore. He stoodon deck and flung his coppers with a free hand at the groupof idlers he was sure to find there. But Smith combinedamusem*nt with his benevolence, by throwing his largesseinto the sand and into the edge of the river, where therecipients of it would have to fight and scramble and divefor what they got. When he cast a handful, there wasalways a tremendous scrimmage, a rolling of body over body,a rending of garments, and a tumbling into the river. Thisfeat not only amused Smith, but it made him the most popularman on the river. Fast as the steamer went, his fame ranMUSCLES OF STEEL. 181before him, and at every landing there was sure to be awaiting crowd, calling, " Smit, Smit." There has been noone in Egypt since Cambyses who has made so much stir asSmit.I should not like to convey the idea that the inhabitantshere are stupid; far from it; they are only ignorant, andoppressed by long misgovernment. There is no inducementfor any one to do more than make a living. The people havesharp countenances, they are lively, keen at a bargain, and, aswe said, many of them expert thieves. They are full ofdeceit and cunning, and their affability is unfailing. Bothvices and good qualities are products not of savagery, but ofa civilization worn old and threadbare. The Eastern civilization generally is only one of manners, and I suspect that ofthe old Egyptian was no more.These people may or may not have a drop of the ancientEgyptian blood in them; they may be no more like theEgyptians of the time of the Pharaohs than the presentEuropean Jews are like the Jews of Judea in Herod's time;but it is evident that, in all the changes in the occupants ofthe Nile valley, there has been a certain continuity of habits,of modes of life, a holding to ancient traditions; the relationof men to the soil is little changed. The Biblical patriarchs,fathers of nomadic tribes, have their best representativesto-day, in mode of life and even in poetical and highlyfigurative speech, not in Israelite bankers in London nor inIsraelite beggars in Jerusalem, but in the Bedaween of thedesert. And I think the patient and sharp-witted, but nevereducated, Egyptians of old times are not badly represented bythe present settlers in the Nile valley.There are ages of hereditary strength in the limbs of theEgyptian women, who were here, carrying these big waterjars, before Menes turned the course of the Nile at Memphis.I saw one to-day sit down on her heels before a full jar thatcould not weigh less than a hundred pounds, lift it to herhead with her hands, and then rise straight up with it, as ifthe muscles of her legs were steel. The jars may be heavier182 CONSCRIPTS.than I said, for I find a full one not easy to lift, and I neversaw an Egyptian man touch one.We go on towards Thebes slowly; though the river is notswifter here than elsewhere, we have the feeling that we arepulling up-hill. We come in the afternoon to Negádeh, andinto one of the prettiest scenes on the Nile. The houses ofthe old town are all topped with pigeon-towers, and thousandsofthese birds are circling about the palm-groves or swoopingin large flocks along the shore. The pigeons seem never tobe slain by the inhabitants, but are kept for the sake of thefertilizer they furnish. It is the correct thing to build asecond story to your house for a deposit of this kind. Theinhabitants here are nearly all Copts, but we see a RomanCatholic church with its cross; and a large wooden crossstands in the midst of the village-a singular sight in aMoslem country.A large barge lies here waiting for a steamboat to tow it toKeneh. It is crowded, packed solidly, with young fellowswho have been conscripted for the army, so that it looks likea floating hulk covered by a gigantic swarm of black bees.And they are all buzzing in a continuous hum, as if the queenbee had not arrived. On the shore are circles of women,seated in the sand, wailing and mourning as if for the dead—the mothers and wives of the men who have just been seizedfor the service of their country. We all respect grief, andfemale grief above all; but these women enter into grief as ifit were a pleasure, and appear to enjoy it. If the son of oneof the women in the village is conscripted, all the women joinin with her in mourning.I presume there are many hard cases of separation, and thatthere is real grief enough in the scene before us. Theexpression of it certainly is not wanting; relays of women.relieve those who have wailed long enough; and I see a littleclay hut into which the women go, I have no doubt forrefreshments, and from which issues a burst of sorrow everytime the door opens.Yet I suppose that there is no doubt that the conscriptionPHILOSOPHICAL RECRUITS. 183(much as I hate the trade of the soldier) is a good thing forthe boys and men drafted, and for Egypt. Shakirr Pasha toldus that this is the first conscription in fifteen years, and thatit does not take more than two per cent. of the men liable tomilitary duty-one or two from a village. These lumpishand ignorant louts are put for the first time in their livesunder discipline, are taught to obey; they learn to read andwrite, and those who show aptness and brightness have anopportunity, in the technical education organized by GeneralStone, to become something more than common soldiers.When these men have served their time and return to theirvillages, they will bring with them some ideas of the worldand some habits of discipline and subordination. It is probably the speediest way, this conscription, by which the dullclodishness of Egypt can be broken up. I suppose that intime we shall discover something better, but now the harshdiscipline of the military service is often the path by whicha nation emerges into a useful career.Leaving this scene of a woe over which it is easy to bephilosophical-the raw recruits, in good spirits, munchingblack bread on the barge while the women howl on shore—we celebrate the night of the New Year by sailing on, tillpresently the breeze fails us, when it is dark; the sailors getout the small anchor forward, and the steersman calmly letsthe sail jibe, and there is a shock, a prospect of shipwreck,and a great tumult, everybody commanding, and no onedoing anything to prevent the boat capsizing or stranding.It is exactly like boys' play, but at length we get out of thetangle, and go on, Heaven knows how, with much pushingand hauling, and calling upon " Allah " and " Mohammed."No. We are not going on, but fast to the bottom, near theshore.In the morning we are again tracking with an occasionalpuff of wind, and not more than ten miles from Luxor. Wecan, however, outwalk the boat; and we find the countryvery attractive and surprisingly rich; the great fields of wheat,growing rank, testify to the fertility of the soil, and when184 "COME BIME-BY" AND HIS COMRADE.the fields are dotted with palm-trees the picture is beautiful.It is a scene of wide cultivation, teeming with an easy,ragged, and abundant life. The doleful sakiyas are creakingin their ceaseless labor; frequent mud- villages dot with brownthe green expanse, villages abounding in yellow dogs andcoffee- colored babies; men are working in the fields, directingthe irrigating streams, digging holes for melons and smallvegetables, and plowing. The plow is simply the iron- pointedstick that has been used so long, and it scratches the groundfive or six inches deep. The effort of the government tomake the peasants use a modern plow, in the Delta, failed.Besides the wheat, we find large cotton-fields, the plant inyellow blossoms, and also ripening, and sugar-cane. Withanything like systematic, intelligent agriculture, what harveststhis land would yield."Good morning! "The words were English, the speaker was one of two eagerArabs, who had suddenly appeared at our side."Good morning. O, yes. Me guide Goorna. ""What is Goorna? ""Yes. Temp de Goorna. Come bime by.""What is Goorna? ""Plenty. I go you. You want buy any antiques? Comebime by.""Do you live in Goorna? ""All same. Memnonium, Goorna, I show all gentlemens.Me guide. Antiques! O plenty. Come bime by."Come Bime By's comrade, an older man, loped along by hisside, unable to join in this intelligent conversation, but itturned out that he was the real guide, and all the better inthat he made no pretence of speaking any English." Can you get us a mummy, a real one, in the originalpackage, that hasn't been opened?'""You like. Come plenty mummy. Used be. Not now.You like, I get. Come bime by, bookra. "We are in fact on the threshold of great Thebes. These aretwo of the prowlers among its sepulchres, who have spied ourON THE THRESHOLD OF THEBES. 185dahabeëh approaching from the rocks above the plain, and havecome to prey on us. They prey equally upon the living andthe dead, but only upon the dead for the benefit of the living.They try to supply the demand which we tourists create . Theymight themselves be content to dwell in the minor tombs, inthe plain, out of which the dead were long ago ejected; butEgyptologists have set them the example and taught them theprofit of digging. If these honest fellows cannot always findthe ancient scarabæi and the vases we want, they manufacturevery good imitations of them. So that their industry is notaltogether so ghastly as it may appear.We are at the north end of the vast plain upon which Thebesstood; and in the afternoon we land, and go to visit thenorthernmost ruin on the west bank, the Temple of Koorneh(Goorneh), a comparatively modern structure, begun by SethiI., a great warrior and conqueror of the nineteenth dynasty,before the birth of Moses.油菜



You need not fear that you are to have inflicted upon youa description of Thebes, its ruins of temples, its statues,obelisks, pylons, tombs, holes in the ground, mummy- pitsand mounds, with an attempt to reconstruct the fabric of itsancient splendor, and present you, gratis, the city as it wasthirty-five hundred years ago, when Egypt was at the pinnacleof her glory, the feet of her kings were on the necks of everynation, and this, her capital, gorged with the spoils of near anddistant maraudings, the spectator of triumph succeeding triumph, the depôt of all that was precious in the ancient world, atonce a treasure-house and a granary, ruled by an aristocracy ofcruel and ostentatious soldiers and crafty and tyrannical priests,inhabited by abject Egyptians and hordes of captive slaves-wasabandoned to a sensuous luxury rivaling that of Rome in herdays of greatest wealth and least virtue in man or woman.I should like to do it, but you would go to sleep before youwere half through it, and forget to thank the cause of yourcomfortable repose. We can see, however, in a moment, theunique situation of the famous town.We shall have to give up, at the outset, the notion of Homer's"hundred-gated Thebes. " It is one of his generosities ofspeech. There never were any walls about Thebes, and itnever needed any; if it had any gates they must have beenpurely ornamental structures; and perhaps the pylons of themany temples were called gates. If Homer had been morecareful in slinging around his epithets he would have saved us adeal of trouble.186LUXOR AND KARNAK. 187Nature prepared a place here for a vast city. The valley ofthe Nile, narrow above and below, suddenly spreads out into agreat circular plain, the Arabian and Libyan ranges of mountains falling back to make room for it. In the circle of thesemountains, which are bare masses of limestone, but graceful andbold in outline, lies the plain, with some undulation of surface,but no hills: the rim of the setting sun is grey, pink, purple,according to the position of the sun; the enclosure is green asthe emerald. The Nile cuts this plain into two unequal parts.The east side is the broader, and the hills around it are neitherso near the stream nor so high as the Libyan range.When the Nile first burst into this plain it seems to have beenundecided what course to take through it. I think it has beenundecided ever since, and has wandered about, shifting frombluff to bluff, in the long ages. Where it enters, its naturalcourse would be under the eastern hills, and there, it seems tome, it once ran. Now, however, it sweeps to the westward,leaving the larger portion of the plain on the right bank.The situation is this: onthe east side of the river are the templeof Luxor on a slight elevation and the modern village built in andaround it; a mile and a half below and further from the river,are the vast ruins of Karnak; two or three miles north-east ofKarnak are some isolated columns and remains of temples.On the west side of the river is the great necropolis. Thecrumbling Libyan hills are pierced with tombs. The desert nearthem is nothing but a cemetery. In this desert are the ruinsof the great temples, Medeenet Háboo, Dayr el Bahree, theMemnonium (or Rameseum, built by Rameses II . , who succeeded in affixing his name to as many things in Egypt asMichael Angelo did in Italy) , the temple of Koorneh, and severalsmaller ones. Advanced out upon the cultivated plain a mile orso from the Memnonium, stand the two Colossi. Over beyondthe first range of Libyan hills, or precipices, are the Tombs ofthe Kings, in a wild gorge, approached from the north by awinding sort of cañon, a defile so hot and savage that a mummypassing through it couldn't have had much doubt of the placehe was going to.188 A QUESTION FOR THE LEARNED.The ancient city of Thebes spread from its cemetery underand in the Libyan hills, over the plain beyond Karnak. Didthe Nile divide that city? Or did the Nile run under theeastern bluff and leave the plain and city one.It is one of the most delightful questions in the world, for noone knows anything about it, nor ever can know. Why, then,discuss it? Is it not as important as most of the questions wediscuss? What, then, would become of learning and scholarship,if we couldn't dispute about the site of Troy, and if we allagreed that the temple of Pandora Regina was dedicated toNeptune and not to Jupiter? I go in for united Thebes.Let the objector consider. Let him stand upon one of theterraces of Dayr el Bahree, and casting his eye over the plainand the Nile in a straight line to Karnak, notice the conformityof directions of the lines of both temples, and that their avenuesofsphinxes produced would have met; and let him say whetherhe does not think they did meet.Let the objector remember that the Colossi, which now standin an alluvial soil that buries their bases over seven feet and isannually inundated, were originally on the hard sand of thedesert; and that all the arable land of the west side has beenmade within a period easily reckoned; that every yard adds toit the soil washed from the eastern bank.Farther, let him see how rapidly the river is eating away thebank at Luxor; wearing its way back again, is it not? to theold channel under the Arabian bluff, which is still marked. Thetemple at Luxor is only a few rods from the river. The Englishnative consul, who built his house between the pillars of thetemple thirty years ago, remembers that, at that time, he usedto saddle his donkey whenever he wanted to go to the river.Observation of the land and stream above, at Erment, favors theimpression that the river once ran on the east side and that it isworking its way back to the old channel.The village of Erment is about eight miles above Luxor, andon the west side of the river. An intelligent Arab at Luxortold me that one hundred and fifty years ago Erment was on theeast side. It is an ancient village, and boasts ruins; among theThe RUINS OF ANCIENT THEBES. 189remaining sculptures is an authentic portrait of Cleopatra, whoappears to have sat to all the stone-cutters in Upper Egypt.Here then is an instance of the Nile going round a town insteadof washing it away.One thing more: Karnak is going to tumble into a heap someday, Great Hall of Columns and all . It is slowly having itsfoundations sapped by inundations and leachings from the Nile.Now, does it stand to reason that Osirtasen, who was a sensibleking and a man of family; that the Thothmes people, andespecially Hatasoo Thothmes, the woman who erected thebiggest obelisk ever raised; and that the vain Rameses II. , whospent his life in an effort to multiply his name and features instone, so that time couldn't rub them out, would have spent somuch money in structures that the Nile was likely to eat awayin three or four thousand years?The objector may say that the bed of the Nile has risen; andmay ask how the river got over to the desert of the west sidewithout destroying Karnak on its way. There is Erment, for anexample.Have you now any idea of the topography of the plain? Iought to say that along the western bank, opposite Luxor,stretches a long sand island joined to the main, in low water,and that the wide river is very shallow on the west side.We started for Koorneh across a luxuriant wheat- field , but soonstruck the desert and the débris of the old city. Across theriver, we had our first view of the pillars of Luxor and thepylons of Karnak, sights to heat the imagination and set theblood dancing. But how far off they are; on what a grandscale this Thebes is laid out-if one forgets London and Parisand New York.The desert we pass over is full of rifled tombs, hewnhorizontally in rocks that stand above the general level. Someof them are large chambers, with pillars left for support. Thedoors are open and the sand drifts in and over the rocks inwhich they are cut. A good many of them are inhabited bymiserable Arabs, who dwell in them and in huts among them.I fancy that, if the dispossessed mummies should reappear, they190 GLORIFICATION OF THE PHARAOHS.would differ little, except perhaps in being better clad, fromthese bony living persons who occupy and keep warm theirsepulchres.Our guide leads us at a lively pace through these holes andheaps of the dead, over sand hot to the feet, under a sky blueand burning, for a mile and a half. He is the first EgyptianI have seen who can walk. He gets over the ground with asort of skipping lope, barefooted, and looks not unlike atough North American Indian. As he swings along, holdinghis thin cotton robe with one hand, we feel as if we werefollowing a shade despatched to conduct us to some UnhappyHunting-Grounds.Near the temple are some sycamore-trees and a collectionof hovels called Koorneh, inhabited by a swarm of ill- conditioned creatures, who are not too proud to beg and probablyare not ashamed to steal. They beset us there and in theruins to buy all manner of valuable antiquities, strings ofbeads from mummies, hands and legs of mummies, smallgreen and blue images, and the like, and raise such a clamorofimportunity that one can hold no communion, if he desiresto, with the spirits of Sethi I. , and his son Rameses II., whospent the people's money in erecting these big columns andputting the vast stones on top ofthem.We are impressed with the massiveness and sombreness ofthe Egyptian work, but this temple is too squat to be effective,and is scarcely worth visiting, in comparison with others,except for its sculptures. Inside and out it is covered with.them; either the face of the stone cut away, leaving thefigures in relief, or the figures are cut in at the sides and leftin relief in the center. The rooms are small-from thenecessary limitations of roof- stones that stretched from wallto wall, or from column to column; but all the walls, in darkness or in light, are covered with carving.The sculptures are all a glorification of the Pharaohs. Weshould like to know the unpronounceable names of the artists,who, in the conventional limits set them by their religion, drewpictures of so much expression and figures so life- like, andTHE TWIN COLOSSI. 191chiseled these stones with such faultless execution; but thereare no names here but of Pharaoh and of the gods.The king is in battle, driving his chariot into the thick of thefight; the king crosses rivers, destroys walled cities, routs armies;the king appears in a triumphal procession with chained captives, sacks of treasure, a menagerie of beasts, and a garden ofexotic trees and plants borne from conquered countries; theking is making offerings to his predecessors, or to gods many,hawk- headed, cow-headed, ibis-headed, man-headed. Theking's scribe is taking count of the hands, piled in a heap, ofthe men the king has slain in battle. The king, a giganticfigure, the height of a pylon, grasps by the hair of the head abunch of prisoners, whom he is about to slay with a raised club—as one would cut off the tops of a handful of radishes.There is a vein of " Big Injun " running through them all.The same swagger and boastfulness, and cruelty to captives. Iwas glad to see one woman in the mythic crowd, doing thegenerous thing: Isis, slim and pretty, offers her breast to her son,and Horus stretches up to the stone opportunity and takes hissupper like a little gentleman. And there is color yet in hercheek and robe that was put on when she was thirty-five hundredyears younger than she is now.Towards the south we saw the more extensive ruins of theMemnonium and, more impressive still, the twin Colossi, one ofthem the so-called vocal statue of Memnon, standing up in theair against the evening sky more than a mile distant. Theyrose out of a calm green plain of what seemed to be wheat, butwhich was a field of beans. The friendly green about themseemed to draw them nearer to us in sympathy. At this distancewe could not see how battered they were. And the unspeakablecalm of these giant figures, sitting with hands on knees, fronting the east, like the Sphinx, conveys the same impression oflapse of time and of endurance that the pyramids give.The sunset, as we went back across the plain, was gorgeousin vermillion, crimson, and yellow. The Colossi dominated thegreat expanse, and loomed up in the fading light like shapes.out ofthe mysterious past.192 A TRIUMPHAL LANDING.Our dahabeëh had crept up to the east side of the island, andcould only be reached by passing through sand and water. Adeep though not wide channel of the Nile ran between us andthe island. We were taken over this in a deep tub of a ferryboat. Laboriously wading through the sand and plowed fieldsof the island, we found our boat anchored in the stream, andthe shore so shallow that even the sandal could not land. Thesailors took us off to the row-boat on their backs.In the evening the dahabeëh is worked across and secured tothe crumbling bank of the Luxor. And the accomplishment ofa voyage of four hundred and fifty miles in sixteen days is, ofcourse, announced by rockets



I NEVER rains at Thebes; you begin with that fact. Buteverybody is anxious to have it rain, so that he can say, " Itrained when I was at Thebes, for the first time in fourthousand years."It has not rained for four thousand years, and the evidence ofthis is that no representation of rain is found in any of thesculptures on temples or monuments; and all Egyptologistsknow that what is not found thus represented has had no existence.To-day, it rained for the first time in four thousand yearsThe circ*mstances were these. We were crossing at sunset fromthe west side to the island, in a nasty little ferry, built like acanal-barge, its depths being full of all uncleanliness and smell-donkeys, peasants, and camels using it for crossing. (Thegetting of a camel in and out of such a deep trough is a work oftime and considerable pounding and roaring of beast and men. )The boat was propelled by two half- clad, handsome, laughingEgyptian boys, who rowed with some crooked limbs of trees, andsang " Hā? Yālesah, " and " Yah! Mohammed " as they stoodand pulled the unwieldy oars.We were standing, above the reek, on a loose platform of sticksat the stern, when my comrade said, " It rains, I think I felt adrop on myhand. ""It can't be," I said, " it has not rained here in four thousandyears; " and I extended my hand. I felt nothing. And yet Icould not swear that a drop or two did not fall into the river.13 193194 A PLEASANT WINTER RESIDENCE.It had that appearance, nearly. And we have seen no fliesskipping on the Nile at this season.In the sculpture we remember that the king is often represented extending his hand. He would not put it out for nothing,for everything done anciently in Egypt, every scratch on a rock,has a deep and profound meaning. Pharaoh is in the attitude.of fearing that it is going to rain. Perhaps it did rain last night.At any rate, there were light clouds over the sky.The morning opens with a cool west wind, which increasesand whirls the sand in great clouds over the Libyan side of theriver, and envelopes Luxor in its dry storm. Luxor is for themost part a collection of miserable mud-hovels on a low ridge,with the half-buried temple for a nucleus, and a few houses of abetter sort along the bank, from which float the consular flags.The inhabitants of Luxor live upon the winter travelers.Sometimes a dozen or twenty gay dahabeëhs and several steamboats are moored here, and the town assumes the appearance ofa fashionable watering-place. It is the best place on the river,on the whole, considering its attractions for scholars and sightseers, to spend the winter, and I have no doubt it would be agreat resort if it had any accommodations for visitors. But ithas not; the stranger must live in his boat. There is not indeedin the whole land of Egypt above Cairo such a thing as an inn;scarcely a refuge where a clean Christian, who wishes to keepclean, can pass a night, unless it be in the house of some governoror a palace of the Khedive. The perfection of the world'sclimate in winter is, to be sure, higher up, in Nubia; but that ofThebes is good enough for people accustomed to Europe andNew England. With steamboats making regular trips and arailroad crawling up the river, there is certain to be the RamesesHotel at Thebes before long, and its rival a Thothmes House;together with the Mummy Restaurant, and the ScarabæusSaloon.You need two or three weeks to see properly the ruins ofThebes, though Cook's " personally conducted tourists " do it infour days, and have a soirée of the dancing- girls besides. Theregion to be traveled over is not only vast (Strabo says the cityILLUSTRIOUS VISITORS. 195was nine miles long) but it is exceedingly difficult getting about,and fatiguing, if haste is necessary. Crossing the swift Nile in asandal takes time; you must wade or be carried over shallows tothe island beach; there is a weary walk or ride over this; anotherstream is to be crossed, and then begins the work of the day.You set out with a cavalcade of mules, servants, water-carriers,and a retinue of hungry, begging Arabs, over the fields andthrough the desert to the temples and tombs. The distancesare long, the sand is glaring, the incandescent sun is reflected inhot waves from the burning Libyan chain. It requires hours tomaster the plan of a vast temple in its ruins, and days to followout the story of the wonderful people who built it , in its marvelous sculptures-acres of inside and outside walls of picture cutin stone.Perhaps the easiest way of passing the time in an ancient ruinwas that of two Americans, who used to spread their rugs insome shady court, and sit there, drinking brandy and champagneall day, letting the ancient civilization gradually reconstructit*elf in their brains.Life on the dahabeëh is much as usual; in fact, we are onlywaiting, a favorable wind to pursue our voyage, expecting to seeThebes satisfactorily on our return. Of the inhabitants andsocial life of Luxor, we shall have more to say by and by. Wehave daily a levée of idlers on the bank, who spend twilighthours in watching the boat; we are visited by sharp-eyed dealersin antiquities, who pull out strings of scarabæi from their bosoms,or cautiously produce from under their gowns a sculpturedtablet, or a stone image, or some articles from a mummy- caseantiques really as good as new. Abd-el-Atti sits on the forwarddeck cheapening the poor chickens with old women, andsurrounded by an admiring group of Arab friends, who sit allday smoking and sipping coffee, and kept in a lively enjoymentby his interminable facetic and badinage.Our most illustrious visitors are the American consul, AliEffendi Noorad, and the English consul, Mustapha Aga. Ali isa well-featured, bronze-complexioned Arab of good family ( I thinkof the Ababdehs) , whose brother is Sheykh of a tribe at Karnak.196 NOSE-RINGS AND BEAUTY.He cannot speak English, but he has a pleasanter smile thanany other American consul I know. Mustapha, now very oldand well known to all Nile travelers, is a venerable wise man ofthe East, a most suave, courtly Arab, plausible, and soft ofspeech; under his bushy eyebrows one sees eyes that are keenand yet glazed with a film of secrecy; the sort of eye that youcannot look into, but which you have no doubt looks into you.Mustapha, as I said, built his house between two columns ofthe temple of Luxor. These magnificent columns, with flaringlotus capitals, are half-buried in sand, and the whole area is sobuilt in and over by Arab habitations that little of the onceextensive and splendid structure can be seen. Indeed, thevisitor will do well to be content with the well-known poeticview of the columns from the river. The elegant obelisk, whosemate is in Paris, must however be seen, as well as the statues ofRameses II. sitting behind it up to their necks in sand-as if asitz-bath had been prescribed. I went one day into the interiorof the huts, in order to look at some of the sculptures, especiallythat of a king's chariot which is shaded by a parasol-an articlewhich we invented three or four thousand years after the Egyptians, who first used it, had gone to the shades where parasolsare useless. I was sorry that I went. The private house Ientered was a mud enclosure with a creaky wooden door.Opening this I found myself in what appeared to be a privatehen-yard, where babies, chickens, old women, straw, flies, anddust, mingled with the odors of antiquity; about this were therooms in which the family sleep-mere dog-kennels. Two ofthe women had nose- rings put through the right nostril, hoopsofgold two or three inches across. I cannot say that a nosering adds to a woman's beauty, but if I had to manage a haremofthese sharp-tongued creatures I should want rings in theirnoses-it would need only a slight pull of the cord in the ring tocause the woman to cry, in Oriental language, " where thougoest, I will go. " The parasol sculpture was half-covered bythe mud-wall and the oven; but there was Pharaoh visible,riding on in glory through all this squalor. The Pharaohs andpriests never let one of the common people set foot inside theseLITTLE FATIMEH. 197superb temples; and there is a sort of base satisfaction now inin seeing the ignorant and oppressed living in their palaces, andletting the hens roost on Pharaoh's sun-shade. But it wasdifficult to make picturesque the inside of this temple-palace,even with all the flowing rags of its occupants.We spenda day in a preliminary visit to the Memnonium andthe vast ruins known as those of Medeenet Háboo. Amongour attendants over the plain are half a dozen little girls,bright, smiling lasses, who salute us with a cheery " Goodmorning," and devote themselves to us the whole day. Eachone carries on her head a light, thin water-koolleh, that wouldhold about a quart, balancing it perfectly as she runs along. Ihave seen mere infants carrying very small koollehs, beginningthus young to learn the art of walking with the large ones,which is to be the chief business of their lives.One of the girls, who says her name is Fatimeh (the nameof the Prophet's favorite daughter is in great request), is verypretty, and may be ten or eleven years old, not far from themarriageable age. She has black hair, large, soft, black eyes,the lids stained with kohl, dazzling white teeth and a sweetsmile. She wears cheap earrings, a necklace of beads andmetal, and a slight ring on one hand; her finger-nails andthe palms of her little hands are stained with henna. Fordress she has a sort of shawl used as a head-veil, and anample outer-garment, a mantle of dark- blue cotton, ornamented down the front seams with colored beads—a coquettishtouch that connects her with her sisters of the ancient régimewho seem to have used the cylindrical blue bead even moreprofusely than ladies now-a-day the jet " bugles, " in dresstrimming. I fear the pretty heathen is beginning to be awareof her attractions.The girls run patiently beside us or wait for us at thetemples all day, bruising their feet on the stony ways, gettingnothing to eat unless we give them something, chattingcheerfully, smiling at us and using their little stock of English to gain our good will, constantly ready with theirkoollehs, and say nothing of backsheesh until they are about to198 A "DOCTORED " MUMMY-HAND.leave us at night and go to their homes. But when theybegin to ask, and get a copper or two, they beg with a mixtureof pathos and anxiety and a use of the pronouns that isirresistible."You tired. Plenty backsheesh for little girl. Yes.""Why don't you give us backsheesh? We are tired too,"we reply."Yes. Me give you backsheesh you tired all day."Fatimeh only uses her eyes, conscious already of her power.They are satisfied with a piastre; which the dragoman says istoo much, and enough to spoil them. But, after all, five centsis not a magnificent gift, from a stranger who has come fivethousand miles, to a little girl in the heart of Africa, who haslighted up the desert a whole day with her charming smiles!The donkey-boy pulls the strings of pathos for his backsheesh, having no beauty to use; he says, " Father and motherall dead." Seems to have belonged to a harem.Before we can gain space or quiet either to examine orenjoy a temple, we have to free ourselves of a crowd ofadhesive men, boys, and girls, who press upon us, their curiosities, relics of the dead, whose only value is their antiquity.The price of these relics is of course wholly " fancy," and Ipresume that Thebes, where the influence of the antique ismost strong, is the best market in the world for these trifles;and that however cheaply they may be bought here, theyfetch a better price than they would elsewhere.I suppose if I were to stand in Broadway and offer passers-bysuch a mummy's hand as this which is now pressed upon mynotice, I could scarcely give it away. This hand has been" doctored " to sell; the present owner has re-wrapped itsbitumen- soaked flesh in mummy-cloth, and partially concealedthree rings on the fingers. Of course the hand is old and thecheap rings are new. It is pleasant to think of these merchants in dried flesh prowling about among the dead, selectinga limb here and there that they think will decorate well, andtricking out with cheap jewelry these mortal fragments. Thishand, which the rascal has chosen, is small, and may haveTHE PLUNDER OF THE TOMBS. 199been a source of pride to its owner long ago; somebody elsemay have been fond of it, though even he-the lover-wouldnot care to hold it long now. A pretty little hand; I supposeit has in its better days given many a caress and love-pat, andmany a slap in the face; belonged to one of the people, or itwould not have been found in a common mummy-pit; perhapsthe hand of a sweet water-bearer like Fatimeh, perhaps ofsome slave-girl whose fatal beauty threw her into the drag- netthat the Pharaohs occasionally cast along the Upper Nileslave-hunting raids that appear on the monuments as greatmilitary achievements. This hand, naked, supple, dimpled,henna-tipped, may have been offered for nothing once; thereare wanted for it four piastres now, rings and all. A dearlittle hand!Great quantities of antique beads are offered us in strings,to one end of which is usually tied a small image of Osiris,or the winged sun, or the scarabæus with wings. Theinexhaustible supply ofthese beads and images leads many tothink that they are manufactured to suit the demand. But itis not so. Their blue is of a shade that is not producednow-a-days. And, besides, there is no need to manufacturewhat exists in the mummy- pits in such abundance. Thebeads and bugles are of glass; they were much used fornecklaces and are found covering the breasts of mummies,woven in a network of various patterns, like old bead purses.The vivid blue color was given by copper.The little blue images of Osiris which are so abundant arealso genuine. They are of porcelain, a sort of porcelain-glass,a sand-paste, glazed, colored blue, and baked. They are found ingreat quantities in all tombs; and it was the Egyptian practiceto thickly strew with them the ground upon which the foundations and floors of temples were laid . These images found intombs are more properly figures of the dead under the formof Osiris, and the hieroglyphics on them sometimes give thename and quality of the departed. They are in fact a sort of"P. P. C." visiting-card, which the mummy has left for futureages. The Egyptians succeeded in handing themselves down200 EXPLOITS OF RAMESES posterity; but the manner in which posterity has receivedthem is not encouraging to us to salt ourselves down foranother age.The Memnonium, or more properly Rameseum, since itwas built by Rameses II. , and covered with his deeds, writ instone, gives you even in its ruins a very good idea of one ofthe most symmetrical of Egyptian temples; the vast columnsof its great hall attest its magnificence, while the elaborationof its sculpture, wanting the classic purity of the earlierwork found in the tombs of Geezeh and Sakkara, speak of atime when art was greatly stimulated by royal patronage.It was the practice of the Pharaohs when they came to thethrone to make one or more military expeditions of conquestand plunder, slay as many enemies as possible (all peoplebeing considered " enemies " who did not pay tribute) , cut aswide a swarth of desolation over the earth as they were able,loot the cities, drag into captivity the pleasing women, andreturn laden with treasure and slaves and the evidences ofenlarged dominion. Then they spent the remainder of theirvirtuous days in erecting huge temples and chiseling theirexploits on them. This is, in a word, the history of thePharaohs.But I think that Rameses II. , who was the handsomest andmost conceited swell of them all, was not so particular aboutdoing the deeds as he was about recording them. He couldnot have done much else in his long reign than erect thetemples, carve the hieroglyphics, and set up the statues ofhimself, which proclaim his fame. He literally spread himselfall over Egypt, and must have kept the whole country busy,quarrying, and building, and carving for his glorification.That he did atenth of the deeds he is represented performing,no one believes now; and I take a vindictive pleasure inabusing him. By some historic fatality he got the name ofthe Great Sesostris, and was by tradition credited with theexploits of Thothmes III. , the greatest of the Pharaohs, a realhero and statesman, during whose reign it was no boast to saythat Egypt " placed her frontier where it pleased herself," andRETURNING WITH THE SPOIL. 201with those of his father Sethi I. , a usurper in the line, but agreat soldier.However, this Rameses did not have good luck with hisgigantic statues; I do not know one that is not shattered,defaced, or thrown down. This one at the Rameseum is onlya wreck of gigantic fragments. It was a monolith of syenite,and if it was the largest statue in Egypt, as it is said, it musthave been over sixty feet high. The arithmeticians say thatit weighed about eight hundred and eighty-seven tons, havinga solid content of three times the largest obelisk in theworld, that at Karnak. These figures convey no idea to mymind. When a stone man is as big as a four-story house, Icease to grasp him. I climbed upon the arm of this Rameses,and found his name cut deeply in the hard granite, the cuttingpolished to the very bottom like the finest intaglio. Thepolishing alone of this great mass must have been an incredible labor. How was it moved from its quarry in Assouan, ahundred and thirty miles distant? And how was it brokeninto the thousand fragments in which it lies? An earthquake would not do it. There are no marks of drilling orthe use of an explosive material. But if Cambyses brokeit-and Cambyses must have been remembered in Egypt asNapoleon I. is in Italy, the one for smashing, the other forstealing he had something as destructive as nitro-glycerine.Rameses II. impressed into his service not only art butliterature. One of his achievements depicted here is hisvictory over the Khitas (Hittites) , an Asiatic tribe; the kingis in the single-handed act of driving the enemy over theriver Orontes, a blueish streak meandering down the wall.This scene is the subject of a famous poem, known as thePoem of Pantaoor, which is carved in hieroglyphics atKarnak and at Luxor. The battle is very spiritedly depictedhere. On the walls are many side- scenes and acts characteristic of the age and the people. The booty from the enemyis collected in a heap; and the quantity of gold is indicatedby the size of a bag of it which is breaking the back of anass; a soldier is pulling the beard of his prisoner, and202 SKILL OF THE ANCIENT ARTISTS.another is beating his captives, after the brutal manner of theEgyptians.The temples at Medeenet Haboo are to me as interesting asthose at Karnak. There are two; the smaller one is of variousages; but its oldest portions were built by Amun-noo- het,the sister of Thothmes, the woman who has left more monuments of her vigor than any other in history, and, woman- like,the monuments are filial offerings, and not erections to herown greatness; the larger temple is the work of Rameses III.The more you visit it, the more you will be impressed withthe splendor of its courts, halls and columns, and you mayspend days in the study of its sculptures without exhaustingthem.Along these high- columned halls stalk vast processions,armies going to battle, conquerors in triumphal entry, priestsand soldiers bearing sacrifices, and rows of stone deities ofthe Egyptian pantheon receiving themin a divine indifference.Again the battle rages, the chariots drive furiously, arrows fillthe air, the foot- troops press forward with their big spearsand long shields, and the king is slaying the chief, whotumbles from his car. The alarm has spread to the countrybeyond; the terrified inhabitants are in flight; a woman, suchis the detail, is seen to snatch her baby and run into thewoods, leaving her pot of broth cooking on the fire.The carving in this temple is often very deep, cut in four orfive inches in the syenite, and beautifully polished to the bottom,as if done with emery. The colors that once gave each figureits character, are still fresh, red, green, blue, and black. Theceilings of some of the chambers yet represent the blue and starsprinkled sky. How surpassingly brilliant these must have beenonce! We see how much the figure owed to color, when thecolor designated the different nationalities, the enemies or thecaptives, the shade of their skin, hair, beard and garments. Werecognize, even, textures of cloth, and the spotted leopard- skinsworn by the priests. How gay are the birds of varied plumage!There is considerable variety in sculpture here, but, after all,an endless repetition on wall after wall, in chamber after chamber,THE APOTHEOSIS OF A PHARAOH. 203of the same royal persons, gods, goddesses, and priests. Thereis nothing on earth so tiresome as a row of stone gods, in whomI doubt if anybody ever sincerely believed, standing to receivethe offerings of a Turveydrop of a king. Occasionally the godstake turn about, and pour oil on the head of a king, at hiscoronation, and with this is usually the very pretty device offour birds flying to the four quarters of the globe to announcethe event. But whatever the scene, warlike or religious, it is forthe glorification of Pharaoh, all the same. He is commonlyrepresented of gigantic size, and all the other human figures.about him are small in comparison. It must have kept thePharaoh in a constantly inflated condition, to walk these hallsand behold, on all sides, his extraordinary apotheosis. But thePharaoh was not only king but high priest, and the divine representative on earth, and about to become, in a peculiar sense,Osiris himself, at his death.The Egyptians would have saved us much trouble if they hadintroduced perspective into these pictures. It is difficult to feelthat a pond of water, a tree and a house, one above the otheron a wall, are intended to be on the same level. We have toaccustom ourselves to figures always in profile, with the eye cutin full as if seen in front, and both shoulders showing. Thehands of prisoners are tied behind them, but this is shown bybringing both elbows, with no sort of respect for the man'sanatomy, round to the side, toward us, yet it is wonderful whatcharacter and vivacity they gave to their figures, and how bysimple profile they represent nationalities and races, Ethiops,Nubians, Jews, Assyrians, Europeans.These temples are inlaid and overlaid and surrounded withheaps of rubbish, and the debris of ancient and modern mud andunbaked-brick dwellings; part of the great pillars are entirelycovered. The Christians once occupied the temples, and thereare remains of a church, and a large church, in one of the vastcourts, built of materials at hand, but gone to ruin more completethan the structure around it. The early Christians hewed awaythe beautiful images of Osiris from the pillars (an Osiride pillar isone upon one side of which, and the length of it, is cut in full204 CHRISTIAN CHURCHES AND PAGAN TEMPLES.relief only attached at the back, a figure of Osiris), and coveredthe hieroglyphics and sculptures with plaster. They defacedthese temples as the Reformers hacked and whitewashed thecathedrals of Germany. And sometimes the plaster which wasmeant to cover forever from sight the images of a mysteriousreligion, has defeated the intentions of the plasterers, by preserving, to an age that has no fear of stone gods, the ancient pictures,sharp in outline and fresh in color.It is indeed marvelous that so much has been preserved,considering what a destructive creature man is, and how itpleases his ignoble soul to destroy the works of his forerunnerson the earth . The earthquake has shaken up Egypt time andagain, but Cambyses was worse; he was an earthquake withmalice and purpose, and left little standing that he had leisureto overturn. The ancient Christians spent a great deal of timein rubbing out the deep-cut hieroglyphics, chiseling away theheads of strange gods, covering the pictures of ancient ceremonies and sacrifices, and painting on the walls their own rudeconceptions of holy persons and miraculous occurrences. Andthen the Moslems came, hating all images and pictorial representations alike, and scraped away or battered with bullets thework of pagans and Christians.There is much discussion whether these so-called temples werenot palaces and royal residences as well as religious edifices.Doubtless many of them served a double purpose; the greatpylons and propylons having rooms in which men might havelived, who did not know what a comfortable house is. Certainlyno palaces of the Pharaohs have been discovered in Egypt, ifthese temples are not palaces in part; andit is not to be supposedthat the Pharaoh dwelt in a mud-house with a palm-roof, like acommon mortal. He was the religious as well as the civil head,Pope and Cæsar in one, and it is natural that he should havedwelt in the temple precincts.The pyramidal towers of the great temple of MedeenetHaboo are thought to be the remains of the palace of RamesesIII. Here indeed the Egyptologists point out his harem andthe private apartments, when the favored of Amun- Re unbent"SOCIETY” IN ANCIENT EGYPT. 205himself from his usual. occupation of seizing a bunch ofcaptives by the hair and slashing off their heads at a blow, inthe society of his women and the domestic enjoyments of afamily man. Here we get an insight into the private life ofthe awful monarch, and are able to penetrate the mysteries ofhis retirement. It is from such sculptures as one finds herethat scholars have been able to rehabilitate old Egyptiansociety and tell us not only what the Egyptians did but whatthey were thinking about. The scholar, to whom we aremost indebted for the reconstruction of the ancient life of theEgyptians, Sir Gardner Wilkinson, is able not only to describeto us a soirée, from paintings in tombs at Thebes, but to tell uswhat the company talked about and what their emotionswere. " In the meantime, " he says, "the conversation becameanimated," (as it sometimes does at parties) " and the ladiesfluently discussed the question of dress," "the maker of anearring and the shop where it was purchased was anxiouslyinquired." On one occasion when the guests were in " raptures of admiration " over something, an awkward youthoverturned a pedestal, creating great confusion and frightening the women, who screamed; however, no one was hurt,and harmony being restored, "the incident afforded freshmatter for conversation, to be related in full details to theirfriends when they returned home. "This is very wonderful art, and proves that the Egyptiansexcelled all who came after them in the use of the chisel andbrush; since they could not only represent in a drawing onthe wall of a tomb the gaiety of an evening party and thesubject of its conversation, but could make the picture conveyas well the talk of the guests to their friends after theyreturned home!We had read a good deal about the harem of Rameses III. ,and it was naturally the first object of our search at MedeenetHaboo. At the first visit we could not find it, and all ourexpectation of his sweet domestic life was unrealized. It wasin vain that we read over the description:-" Here the king isattended by his harem, some of whom present him with206 A PEEP INTO THE KING'S, or wave before him fans and flabella; and a favoriteis caressed, or invited to divert his leisure hours with a gameof draughts." We climbed everywhere, and looked intoevery room, but the king and his harem were not visible.And yet the pictures, upon which has been built all this fairfabric of the domestic life of Rameses, must exist somewherein these two pyramidal towers. And what a gallery ofdelights it must be, we thought. The king attended by hisharem!Upon a subsequent visit, we insisted that the guide shouldtake us into this harem. That was not possible, but he wouldshow it to us. We climbed a broken wall, from the top ofwhich we could look up, through a window, into a smallapartment in the tower. The room might be ten feet bytwelve in size, probably smaller. There was no way ofgetting to it by any interior stairway or by any exterior one,that we could see, and I have no doubt that if Pharaoh livedthere he climbed up by a ladder and pulled his harem up afterhim.But the pictures on the walls, which we made out bythehelp of an opera- glass, prove this to have been one of theprivate apartments, they say. There are only two pictures,only one, in fact, not defaced; but as these are the onlyexamples ofthe interior decoration of an ancient royal palacein all Egypt, it is well to make the most of them. They areboth drawn in spirited outlines and are very graceful, theprofile faces having a Greek beauty. In one Rameses III., ofcolossal size, is represented seated on an elegant fauteuil,with his feet on a stool. He wears the royal crown, anecklace, and sandals. Before him stands a lady of his harem,clad in a high crown of lotus-stems, a slight necklace, andsandals turned up like skates. It must be remembered thatthe weather was usually very warm in Thebes, especially onthis side the river. The lady is holding up a lotus-flower, butit is very far from the royal nose, and indeed she stands so faroff, that the king has to stretch out his arm to chuck herunder the chin. The Pharaoh's beautiful face preserves itsA ROYAL GAME OF DRAUGHTS. 207immortal calm, and the " favorite is caressed " in accordancewith the chastest requirements of high art.In the other picture, the Pharaoh is seated as before, buthe is playing at draughts. In his left hand he holds some men,and his right is extended lifting a piece from the draughtboard. His antagonist has been unfortunate. Her legs areall gone; her hand has disappeared. There remain of this"favorite " only the outline of part of the body, the right armand the hand which lifts a piece, and a suggestion of the leftarm extended at full length and pushing a lotus-bud close tothe king's nose. It is an exhibition of man's selfishness.The poor woman is not only compelled to entertain thedespot at the game, but she must regale his fastidious andscornful nose at the same time; it must have been verytiresome to keep the left hand thus extended through a wholegame. What a passion the Egyptians had for the heavyperfume of this flower. They are smelling it in all theirpictures.We climbed afterwards, by means of a heap of rubbish,into a room similar to this one, in the other tower, where wesaw remains of the same sculpture. It was like the Egyptiansto repeat that picture five hundred times in the same palace.The two Colossi stand half a mile east of the temple ofMedeenet Haboo, and perhaps are the survivors of like figureswhich lined an avenue to another temple. One of them isbetter known to fame than any other ancient statue, and restsits reputation on the most shadowy basis. In a line withthese statues are the remains of other colossi of nearly the samesize, buried in the alluvial deposit. These figures both represent Amunoph III. (about 1500 or 1600 B. C. ); they areseated; and on either side of the legs of the king, and attachedto the throne, are the statues of his mother and daughter, little women, eighteen feet high. The colossi are fifty feet highwithout the bases, and must have stood sixty feet in the airbefore the Nile soil covered the desert on which they wereerected. The pedestal is a solid stone thirty-three feet long.Both were monoliths. The southern one is still one piece,208 THE VOCAL STATUE OF MEMNON.but shockingly mutilated. The northern one is the famousVocal Statue of Memnon; though why it is called of Memnon andwhy "vocal " is not easily explained. It was broken intofragments either by some marauder, or by an earthquake at thebeginning of our era, and built up from the waist by blocks ofstone, in the time of the Roman occupation , during the reign ofSeptimius Severus.There was a tradition-perhaps it was only the tradition of atradition that it used to sing every morning at sunrise. Nomention is made of this singing property, however, until after itwas overthrown; and its singing ceased to be heard after theRoman Emperor put it into the state in which we now see it.It has been assumed that it used to sing, and many theorieshave been invented to explain its vocal method. Very likelythe original report of this prodigy was a Greek or Romanfable; and the noise may have been produced by a trick forHadrian's benefit ( who is said to have heard it) in order to keepup the reputation of the statue.Amunoph III. (or Amenōphis, or Amen-hotep-he neverknew how to spell his name) was a tremendous slasher-aboutover the territories of other people; there is an inscriptiondown at Samneh ( above the second cataract) which says that hebrought, in one expedition, out of Soudan, seven hundred andforty negro prisoners, half of whom were women and children.On the records which this modest man made, he is " Lord ofboth worlds, absolute master, Son of the Sun." He is Horus,the strong bull. " He marches and victory is gained, likeHorus, son of Isis, like the Sun in heaven. " He also builtalmost as extensively as Rameses II .; he covered both banks ofthe Nile with splendid monuments; his structures are foundfrom Ethiopia to the Sinaitic peninsula. He set up his imagein this Colossus, the statue which the Greeks and Romans calledMemnon, the fame of which took such possession of theimagination of poets and historians. They heard, or said theyheard, Memnon, the Ethiopian, one of the defenders of Troy,each morning saluting his mother, Aurora.If this sound was heard, scientists think it was produced byA MYSTERIOUS VOICE. 209the action of the sun's rays upon dew fallen in the crevicesof the broken figure. Others think the sound was produced bya priest who sat concealed in the lap of the figure and struck ametallic stone. And the cavity and the metallic stone exist therenow. Of course the stone was put in there and the cavity left,when the statue was repaired, it having been a monolith. Andas the sound was never heard before the statue was broken norafter it was repaired, the noise was not produced by themetallic stone. And if I am required to believe that the statuesang with his head off, I begin to doubt altogether. I incline tothink that we have here only one of those beautiful myths inwhich the Greeks and Romans loved to clothe the distant andthe gigantic.One of the means of accounting for a sound which may neverhave been heard, is that the priests produced it in order tostrike with awe the people. Now, the Egyptian priests nevercared anything about the people, and wouldn't have taken thetrouble; indeed, in the old times " people " wouldn't have beenallowed anywhere within such a sacred inclosure as this inwhich the Colossus stood. And, besides, the priest could nothave got into the cavity mentioned. When the statue was amonolith, it would puzzle him to get in; and there is nostairway or steps by which he could ascend now. We sent anArab up, who scaled the broken fragments with extreme difficulty,and struck the stone. The noise produced was like that made bystriking the metallic stones we find in the desert, —not a resonance to be heard far.So that I doubt that there was any singing at sunrise by theso-called Memnon (which was Amunoph), and I doubt that itwas a priestly device.This Amunoph family, whose acquaintance we have beenobliged to make, cut a wide swarth in their day; they hadeccentricities, and there are told a great many stories aboutthem, which might interest you if you could believe that theAmunophs were as real as the Hapsburgs and the Stuarts andthe Grants.Amunoph I. (or Amen-hotep) was the successor of Amosis 14210 PICTURES OF SOME CHARMING GIRLS.(or Ahmes) who expelled the Shepherds, and even pursued theminto Canaan and knocked their walled- towns about their heads.Amunoph I. subdued the Shasu or Bedaween of the desertbetween Egypt and Syria, as much as those hereditary robberswere ever subdued . This was in the seventeenth century B. C.This king also made a naval expedition up the Nile into Ethiopia, and it is said that he took captive there the " chief of themountaineers. " Probably then, he went into Abyssinia, and didnot discover the real source of the Nile.The fourth Amunoph went conquering in Asia, as his predecessors had done, for nations did not stay conquered in thosedays. He was followed by his seven daughters in chariots ofwar. These heroic girls fought, with their father, and may beseen now, in pictures, gently driving their chariot- wheels overthe crushed Asiatics. When Amunoph IV. came home andturned his attention to religion , he made lively work with theEgyptian pantheon. This had grown into vast proportions fromthe time of Menes, and Amunoph did not attempt to improve itor reform it; he simply set it aside, and established a new religion.He it was who abandoned Thebes and built Tel- el- Amarna, andthere set up the worship of a single god, Aten, represented bythe sun's disc. He shut up the old temples, effaced the imagesof the ancient gods, and persecuted mercilessly their worshippersthroughout the empire.He was prompted to all this by his mother, for he himself waslittle better than an imbecile. It was from his mother that hetook his foreign religion as he did his foreign blood, for there wasnothing of the Egyptian type in his face. His mother, QueenTaia, wife of Amunoph III. , had light hair, blue eyes and rosycheeks, the characteristics of northern women. She was not ofroyal family, and not Egyptian; but the child of a foreign familythen living in the Delta, and probably the king married her forher beauty and cleverness.M. Lenormant thinks she was a Hebrew. That people werethen very numerous in the Delta, where they lived unmolestedkeeping their own religion, a very much corrupted and materialized monotheism. Queen Taia has the complexion and featuresWOMAN IN HISTORY. 211of the Hebrews-I don't mean of the Jews who are now dispersed over the continents. Lenormant credits the Hebrews,through the Queen Taia, with the overthrow of the Pharaonicreligion and the establishment of the monotheism of Amunoph IV.— a worship that had many external likenesses to theHebrew forms. At Tel- el-Amarna we see, among the utensilsof the worship of Aten, the Israelitish " Table of Shew-bread . "It is also noticed that the persecution of the Hebrews coincideswith the termination of the rcligious revolution introduced bythe son of Taia.Whenever a pretty woman of talent comes into history shemakes mischief. The episode of Queen Taia is however a greatreliefto the granite-faced monotony of the conservative Pharaohs.Women rulers and regents always make the world lively for thetime being-and it took in this case two or three generations torepair the damages. Smashing things and repairing damagesthat is history,History starts up from every foot of this Theban plain, piledfour or five deep with civilizations. These temples are engulfedin rubbish; what the Persians and the earthquake spared, Coptsand Arabs for centuries have overlaid with their crumbling habitations. It requires a large draft upon the imagination toreinstate the edifices that once covered this vast waste; but weare impressed with the size of the city, when we see the longdistances that the remaining temples are apart, and the evidence,in broken columns, statues, and great hewn blocks of stoneshouldering out of the sand, of others perhaps as large.



THE WEATHER is almost unsettled . There was actuallya dash of rain against the cabin window last night-overbefore you could prepare an affidavit to the fact-and today is cold, more or less cloudy with a drop, only a drop, ofrain occasionally. Besides, the wind is in the south- west and thesand flies. We cannot sail, and decide to visit Karnak, in spiteof the entreaty of the hand- book to leave this, as the crown ofall sight-seeing, until we have climbed up to its greatness overall the lesser ruins.Perhaps this is wise; but I think I should advise a friend togo at once to Karnak and outrageously astonish himself, whilehis mind is fresh, and before he becomes at all sated with ruinsor familiar with other vast and exceedingly impressive edifices.They are certain to dull a little his impression of Karnak even"Madam-" it is Abd- el-Atti who comes in, rubbing hishands-"your carriage stops the way."66 Carriage?19"Yes, ma'am, I just make him. "The carriage was an arm-chair slung between two pushingpoles; between each end of them was harnessed a surly diminutive donkey who seemed to feel his degradation. Each donkeyrequired a driver; Ahmed, with his sleeves rolled up and armedwith a big club, walked beside, to steady the swaying chair,and to beat the boys when their donkeys took a fancy to liedown; and a cloud of interested Arabs hovered about it, runningwith it, adding to the noise, dust, and picturesqueness of ourcavalcade.212THE WONDERFUL RUINS OF KARNAK. 213On the outskirts of the mud-cabins we pass through theweekly market, a motley assemblage of country-folks andproduce, camels, donkeys, and sheep. It is close by theGhawazee quarter, where is a colony of a hundred or moreof these dancing- girls. They are always conspicuous amongEgyptian women by their greater comeliness and gay apparel.They wear red and yellow gowns, many tinkling ornaments ofsilver and gold, and their eyes are heavily darkened with kohl.I don't know what it is in this kohl, that it gives woman such awicked and dangerous aspect. They come out to ask forbacksheesh in a brazen but probably intended to be a seductivemanner; they are bold, but some of them rather well- looking.They claim to be an unmixed race of ancient lineage; but Isuspect their blood is no purer than their morals. There is notmuch in Egypt that is not hopelessly mixed.Ofthe mile-and-a-half avenue of Sphinxes that once connectedLuxor with Karnak, we see no trace until we are near the latter.The country is open and beautiful with green wheat, palms, andsycamores. Great Karnak does not show itself until we areclose upon it; its vast extent is hidden by the remains of thewall ofcircuit, by the exterior temples and pylons. It is not untilwehave passed beyond the great-but called small-temple ofRameses III. , at the north entrance, and climbed the pyramidaltower to the west of the Great Hall, that we begin to comprehend the magnitude of these ruins, and that only days of wandering over them and of study would give us their gigantic plan.Karnak is not a temple, but a city rather; a city of temples,palaces, obelisks, colossal statues, It is , like a city, a growth ofmany centuries. It is not a conception or the execution of apurpose; it is the not always harmonious accretion of time andwealth and vanity. Of the slowness of its growth some ideamay be gained from the fact that the hieroglyphics on one faceof one of its obelisks were cut two hundred and fifty years afterthose on the opposite face. So long ago were both chiseled,however, they are alike venerable to us. I shouldn't lose mytemper with a man who differed with me only a thousand yearsabout the date of any event in Egypt.214our era.THE GREAT HALL OF SETHI.They were working at this mass of edifices, sacred or profane,all the way from Osirtasen I. down to Alexander II.; that isfrom about 3064 B. C. according to Mariette (Bunsen, 2781,Wilkinson, 2080, -it doesn't matter) to only a short time beforeThere was a modest beginning in the plain but chastetemple of Osirtasen; but each king sought to outdo his predecessor until Sethi I. forever distanced rivalry in building theGreat Hall. And after him it is useless for anyone else to attemptgreatness by piling up stones. The length of the temples, pylons,and obelisks, en suite from west to east, is 1180 feet; but thereare other outlying and gigantic ruins; I suppose it is fully a mileand a half round the wall of circuit.There is nothing in the world of architecture like the GreatHall; nothing so massive, so surprising, and, for me, at least, socrushingly oppressive. What monstrous columns! And howthickly they are crowded together! Their array is alwayscompared to a forest. The comparison is apt in some respects;but how free, uplifting is a forest, how it expands into the blueair, and lifts the soul with it. A piece of architecture is to bejudged, I suppose, by the effect it produces. It is not simplythat this hall is pagan in its impression; it misses the highestarchitectural effect by reason of its unrelieved heaviness. It iswonderful; it was a prodigious achievement to build so manybig columns.The setting of enormous columns so close together that you canonly see a few of them at one point of view is the architectureof the Great Hall. Upon these, big stones are put for a roof.There is no reason why this might not have been repeated overan acre of ground. Neither from within nor from without canyou see the extent of the hall. * The best view of it is down thecenter aisle, formed by the largest columns; and as these have

  • The Great Hall measures one hundred and seventy feet by three hundred

and twenty-nine; in this space stand one hundred and thirty-four columns;twelve of these, forming the central avenue of one hundred and seventy feet,are sixty-two feet high, without plinth and abacus, and eleven feet six inches in diameter; the other one hundred and twenty-two columns are forty- twofeet five inches in height and about nine feet in diameter. The great columns stand only fifteen or sixteen feet apart.THE LARGEST OBELISK IN THE WORLD. 215height as well as bulk, and the sky is now seen above them, theeffect is of the highest majesty. This hall was dimly lighted bywindows in the clerestory, the frames of which exhibit afreedom of device and grace of carving worthy of a Gothiccathedral. These columns, all richly sculptured, are laid up inblocks of stone of half the diameter, the joints broken. If theEgyptians had dared to use the arch, the principle of which theyknew, in this building, so that the columns could have stoodwide apart and still upheld the roof, the sight of the interiorwould have been almost too much for the human mind. Thespectator would have been exalted, not crushed by it.Not far off is the obelisk which Amunoo-het erected to thememory of her father. I am not sure but it will stand longafter The Hall of Sethi is a mass of ruins; for already is thewater sapping the foundations of the latter, some of the columnslean like reeling drunken men, and one day, with crash aftercrash, these giants will totter, and the blocks of stone of whichthey are built will make another of those shapeless heaps towhich sooner or later our solidest works come. The redgranite shaft of the faithful daughter lifts itself ninety- twofeet into the air, and is the most beautiful as it is the largestobelisk ever raised.The sanctuary of red granite was once very rich andbeautiful; the high polish of its walls and the remains of itsexquisite carving, no less than the colors that still remain,attest that. The sanctuary is a heap of ruins, thanks to thatancient Shaker, Cambyses, but the sculptures in one of thechambers are the most beautiful we have seen; the colors,red, blue, and green are still brilliant, the ceiling is spangledwith stars on a blue firmament. Considering the hardness ofthis beautiful syenite and the difficulty of working it, I thinkthis is the most admirable piece of work in Thebes.It may be said of some of the sculptures here, especially ofthe very spirited designs and intelligent execution of those ofthe Great Hall, that they are superior to those on the other sideof the river. And yet there is endless theological reiterationhere; there are dreary miles of the same gods in the same216 A CITY OF TEMPLES AND PALACES.attitudes; and you cannot call all of them respectable gods.The longer the religion endured the more conventional andrepetitious its representations became. The sculptors cameto have a traditional habit of doing certain scenes and groupsin a certain way; and the want of life and faith in thembecomes very evident in the sculptures of the Ptolemaic period.In this vast area you may spend days and not exhaust theobjects worth examination. On one of our last visits wefound near the sacred lake very striking colossal statueswhich we had never seen before.When this city of temples and palaces, the favorite royalresidence, was entire and connected with Luxor by theavenue of sphinxes, and the great edifices and statues on thewest side of the river were standing, this broad basin of theNile, enclosed by the circle of rose-colored limestone mountains, which were themselves perforated with vast tombs,must have been what its splendid fame reports, when it couldsend to war twenty thousand chariots. But, I wonder, whetherthe city, aside from its conspicuous temples and attachedpalaces, was one of mud-hovels, like those of most peoples ofantiquity, and of the modern Egyptians.33.0


WE resume our voyage on the sixth of January, but weleave a hostage at Luxor as we did at Asioot . This isa sailor who became drunk and turbulent last night onhasheesh, and was sent to the governor.We found him this morning with a heavy chain round hisneck and tied to a stake in one corner of the court-yard of thehouse where the governor has his office. I think he might havepulled up the stake and run away; but I believe it is not considered right here for a prisoner to escape. The common peopleare so subdued that they wilt, when authority puts its heavy handon them . Near the sailor was a mud-kennel into which hecould crawl if he liked . This is the jail of Luxor. Justice issummary here. This sailor is confined without judge or juryand will be kept till he refunds his advance wages, since hewas discharged from the boat as a dangerous man.The sailors dread the lock-up, for they may be forced into thearmy as the only way out of it; they would much prefer thestick. They are used to the stick; four thousand years ofEgyptians have been accustomed to the stick. A beating theydo not mind much, or at least are not humiliated by it as anotherrace would be. But neither the prospect of the jail nor the stickwill wean them from hasheesh, which is the curse of Egypt.We spread our sails to a light breeze and depart in companywith two other dahabeëhs, one English (the Phila) and oneAmerican (the Dongola) . Africa and weeks of leisure and sunnyskies are before us. We loiter along in company, in friendly217218 THE "PHILÆ" AND THE “DONGOLA. ”company one may say, now passing a boat and now fallingbehind, like three ducks coquetting in a swift current.none of us in a hurry, we are indifferent to progress, our mindsare calm and our worst passions not excited. We do not appearto be going rapidly, I sometimes doubt if we are going forwardat all, but it gradually becomes apparent that we are in the midstof a race!Everything in this world is relative. I can imagine a fearfullyexciting match of mud-turtles on a straight track. Think ofthe agony, prolonged, that the owner of the slow turtle wouldsuffer! We are evidently in for it; and a race like this, thatlasts all day, will tire out the hardiest sportsman.The Rip Van Winkle is the largest boat and happens to havethe lead; but the Phila, a very graceful, gay boat, is crawlingup to us; the Dongola also seems to feel a breeze that we havenot. We want a strong wind-the Rip Van Winkle does notwake up in a mild air. As we desire, it freshens a little, the bigsail swells, and the ripples are louder at the bow. Unfortunatelythere is breeze enough for three, and the other vessels shakethemselves out like ducks about to fly. It is a pretty sight justnow; the spread of three great bird-wing sails, the long gailypainted cabins and decks, the sweeping yards and the nationalcolors and variegated streamers flying!They are gaining on us; the Phila gets inside, and taking ourwind, for a moment, creeps ahead, and attempts to sheer acrossour bow to force us into the swifter current; the Dongola sailsin at the same time, and a jam and collision appear inevitable.A storm of language bursts out of each boat; men run to sternand bow, to ward off intruders or to disengage an entangled spar;all the crew, sailors, reïses, and dragomans are in the mostactive vociferation. But the Phila sails out of the coil, theDongola draws ahead at the risk of going into the bank, andour crew seize the punt-poles and have active work to preventgoing fast on a sand-bar to leeward .But the prosperity of the wicked is short. The wind fallsflat. Instantly our men are tumbling into the water and carryingthe rope ashore to track The lines are all out, and the menTAKING THE LEAD. 219are attempting to haul us round a deep bend. The steersmenkeep the head of the vessels off shore, and the strain on thetrackers is tremendous. The cables flop along the bank andscrape over the shadoofs, raking down a stake now and then,and bring out from their holes the half-naked, protesting proprietors, who get angry and gesticulate, —as if they had anythingto do with our race!The men cannot hold the cable any longer; one by one theyare forced to let go, at the risk of being drawn down the crumbling bank, and the cable splashes into the water. The sailorsrun ahead and come down upon a sand-spit; there are puffs ofwind in our sail, and we appear to have made a point, when themen wade on board and haul in the rope. The Dongola is closeupon us; the Phila has lost by keeping too far out in the current. Oh, for a wind!Instead of a wind, there is a bland smile in the quiet sky.Why, O children, do you hasten? Have not Nile sailors beendoing this for four thousand years? The boats begin to yawabout. Poles are got out. We are all in danger ofgoing aground;we are all striving to get the inside track at yonder point; weare in danger of collision; we are most of all in danger ofbeing left behind. The crews are crazy with excitement; asthey hurriedly walk the deck, rapidly shifting their poles in theshallow water, calling upon Yālēsah in quicker and quickerrespirations, " Hā Yālēsah, " " Hā Yālēsah, " as they run tochange the sail at the least indication of a stray breeze, as theysee first one dahabeëh and then the other crawling ahead, thecontest assumes a serious aspect, and their cries are stronger andmore barbaric.The Phila gets inside again and takes the bank. We are alltracking, when we come to the point, beyond which is a deepbay. If we had wind we should sail straight across; the distanceround the bay is much greater-but then we can track along thebank; there is deep water close under the bank and there isdeep water in mid-river. The Phile stands away into the river,barely holding its own inthe light zephyr. The Dongola triesto follow the Phila, but swings round, and her crew take to the22066EXCITING RACE-EIGHT MILES A DAY.poles. Our plan appears to be more brilliant. Our men takethe cable out upon a sand-bank in the stream and attempt to towus along the center channel. All goes well. We gain on thePhile and pass it. We see the Dongola behind, struggling intheshallows. But the sand- bank is a failure. The men begin to gofrom it into deeper water; it is up to their knees, it reaches ourdrawers," which we bought for the crew; it comes to the waist;their shoulders are going under. It is useless; the cable is letgo, and the men rush back to the sand-bar. There they are.Our cable is trailing down-stream; we have lost our crew, andthe wind is just coming up. While we are sending the sandal torescue our mariners, the Phila sails away, and the Dongola shows her stern.The travelers on the three boats, during all this contest, are sitting on the warm, sunny decks, with a pretence of books, operaglasses in hand; apparently regarding the scene with indifference,but no doubt, underneath this mask, longing to " lick " the otherboats.After all, we come to Erment (which is eight miles from Luxor)not far apart. The race is not to the swift. There is no swifton the Nile. But I do not know how there could be a moreexciting race of eight miles a day!At Erment is a large sugar-factory belonging to the Khedive;and a governor lives here in a big house and harem. The househas an extensive garden laid out by old Mohammed Ali, and aplantation of oranges, Yusef Effendis, apples, apricots, peaches,lemons, pomegranates, and limes. The plantation shows thatfruit will grow on the Upper Nile, if one will take the trouble toset out and water the trees. But we see none. The high Nilehere last September so completely washed out the garden thatwe can get neither flowers nor vegetables. And some peoplelike the rapidly-grown watery vegetables that grow along theNile.Our dragoman wanted some of the good, unrefined loaf- sugarfrom the factory here, and I went with him to see how businessis transacted. We had difficulty in finding any office or place ofsale about the establishment.INSIDE THE KHEDIVE'S SUGAR-FACTORY. 221But a good- natured dwarf, who seemed to spring out of theground on our landing, led us through courts and amid dilapidated warehouses to a gate, in which sat an Arab in mixed costume.Within the gate hung a pair of steelyards, and on one side was abench. The gate, the man, the steelyards and the bench constituted an office. Beyond was an avenue, having low enclosureson each side, that with broken pillars and walls of brick lookedvery much like Pompeii; in a shallow bin was a great heap ofbarley, thrashed, and safe and dry in the open air.The indifferent man in the gate sent for a slow boy, who, inhis own time, came, bearing a key, a stick an inch square and afoot long, with four short iron spikes stuck in one side near theend. He led us up a dirty brick stairway outside a building,and inserting the key in a wooden lock to match (both lock andkey are unchanged since the Pharaohs) let us into a long, lowroom, like an old sail -loft full of dust, packages of sugar- paperand old account-books. When the shutters were opened wefound at one end a few papers of sugar, which we bought, andour own sailor carried down to the steelyards. The indifferentman condescended to weigh the sugar, and took the pay: buthe lazily handed the money to the boy, who sauntered off withit. Naturally, you wouldn't trust that boy; but there was anindescribable sense of the worthlessness of time and of moneyand of all trade, about this transaction , that precluded the possibility of the smartness of theft.The next daythe race is resumed, with little wind and a gooddeal of tracking; we pass the Dongola and are neck-and-neckwith the Phila till afternoon, when we bid her good- bye; andyet not with unmixed pleasure.It is a pleasure to pass a boat and leave her toiling after;but the pleasure only lasts while she is in sight. If I had myway, we should constantly overhaul boats and pass them , andso go up the stream in continual triumph. It is only the coldconsciousness of duty performed that sustains us, when wehave no spectators of our progress.We go on serenely. Hailing a crossing ferry- boat, loadedwith squatting, turbaned tatterdemalion Arabs, the dragomancries, "Salaam ' aleykoom."222 SETTING FIRE TO A TOWN.The reply is, " Salaam; peace be with you; may God meetyou in the way; may God receive you to himself." TheOld Testament style.While we were loitering along by Mutáneh-where there isa sugar-factory, and an irrigating steam-pump-trying tocount the string of camels, hundreds of them moving alongthe bank against the sunset-camels that bring the cane tobe ground-and our crew were eating supper, I am sorry tosay that the Phila poled ahead of us, and went on to Esneh.But something happened at Esneh.It was dark when we arrived at that prosperous town, and,of course, Abd- el- Atti, who would like to have us go blazingthrough Egypt like Cambyses, sent up a rocket. Its fieryserpent tore the black night above us, exploded in a hundredcolored stars, and then dropped its stick into the water.Splendid rockets! The only decent rockets to be had inEgypt are those made by the government; and Abd-el- Attiwas the only dragoman who had been thoughtful enough tomake interest with the authorities and procure government .rockets. Hence our proud position on the river. We had nofirman, and the Khedive did not pay our expenses, but theViceroy himself couldn't out-rocket us.As soon as we had come to shore and tied up, an operationtaking some time in the darkness, we had a visit from thegovernor, a friend of our dragoman; but this visit was urgentand scarcely friendly. An attempt had been made to set thetown on fire! A rocket from an arriving boat had beenthrown into the town, set fire to the straw on top of one ofthe houses and-"Did it spread? ”"No, but it might. Allah be praised, it was put out. Butthe town might have been burned down. What a way is this,to go along the Nile firing the towns at night?""'Twasn't our rocket. Ours exploded in the air and fellinto the river. Did the other boat, did the Phila, send up arocket when she arrived? ""Yes. There was another rocket. "ABD-EL-ATTI IN A "FIX."" Dat's it, dat's it, " says Abd-el-Atti.223"Why you no go onboard the Phile and not come here? " And then he added tous, as if struck by a new idea, " Where the Phila get datrocket? I think he have no rocket before. Not send any upChristmas in Asioot, not send any up in Luxor. I think these very strange. Not so?""What kind of rocket was it, that burnt the town? " we askthe governor." I have it." The governor ran to the cabin door andcalled. A servant brought in the exploded missile. It was alarge- sized rocket, like our own; twice as large as the rocketsthat are not made by the government, and which travelersusually carry."Seems like our stick," cries Abd-el-Atti, getting excited.He examined the sheath with great care. We all gatheredround the cabin lamp to look at the fatal barrel. It had amark on it, something in Arabic. Abd- el-Atti turned itsideways and upside down, in an effort to get at the meaningofthe writing."That is government; make ' em by the government; nodoubt," he says, standing off and becoming solemn. "Datrocket been stole. Looks like our rocket. "Abd-el-Atti flies out, and there is a commotion outside."Who has been stealing rockets and sell ' em to that dragoman? Boxes are opened. Rockets are brought in andcompared. The exploded one has the same mark as ours, itis the same size.A new anxiety dawns upon Abd-el-Atti. What if thePhila has government rockets? Our distinction is then gone.No. It can't be. " I know what every dragoman do inCairo. He can't get dese rocket. Nobody get ' em dis year'cept us." Abd- el -Atti is for probing the affair to the bottom.Perhaps the hasheesh- eating sailor we discharged at Luxorstole some of our rockets and sold them, and thus they cameinto possession ofthe dragoman ofthe Phila.The young governor, however, has had enough of it. Hebegins to see a great deal of vexation to himself, and a row224 WHO STOLE the roCKETS?with an English and an American dahabeëh and with nativesbesides. Let it drop, he says. The governor sits on the divansmoking a cigar. He is accompanied by a Greek friend, amerchant of the place. When the governor's cigar goes out,in his distraction, the Greek takes it, and re-lights it, puffingit till it is well enflamed, and then handing it again to thegovernor. This is a custom of the East. The servant often"starts " the cigarette for his master."Oh, let it go," says the governor, appealing to us: "It isfinish now. It was no damage done. "" But it might," cries Abd- el- Atti, " it might burn thetown," taking now the rôle which the governor had dropped."But you are not to blame. It is not you have done it. ""Then why you come to me, why you come to us wid derocket? Why you no go to the Phila? Yes. You knowthat we, nobody else on the river got government rockets.This government rocket-look the mark, " seizing the exploded one and a new one, and bringing the ends of both sonear the lamp that we all fear an explosion. " There issomething underhands here. ""But it's all right now.""How it's all right? Story go back to Cairo; Rip VanWinkle been gone set fire to Esneh. Whose rockets? Government rockets. Nobody have government rockets ' ceptAbd-el-Atti. "A terrific confab goes on in the cabin for nearly an hourbetween the dragoman, the governor, and the Greek; a livelyentertainment and exhibition of character which we have nodesire to curtail. The governor is a young, bright, presentablefellow, in Frank dress, who for liveliness of talk and gesturewould pass for an Italian.When the governor has departed, our reïs comes in andpresents us a high-toned " certificate " from the gentleman onboard the Phila:-he has learned from our reïs, steersman andsome sailors (who are in a panic) that they are all to be hauledbefore the governor and punished on a charge of stealing rocketsand selling them to his dragoman. He certifies that he boughtWE VISIT A “MAN-OF-WAR." 225his own rockets in the Mooskee; that his dragoman was withhim when he bought them; and that our men are innocent.The certificate further certifies that our conduct toward ourcrew is unjustifiable and an unheard of cruelty!Here was a casus belli! Foreign powers had intervened.The right of search and seizure was again asserted; the war of1812 was about to be renewed. Our cruelty unheard of? Weshould think so. All the rest of it was unheard of also. Wehadn't the slightest intention of punishing anybody or haulinganybody before the governor. When Abd-el-Atti hears thecertificate, he shakes his head:--"Buy ' em like this in the Mooskee? Not be. Not findgovernment rockets in any shop in the Mooskee. Somethingunderhands by that dragoman! "Not wishing to light the flames of war in Africa, we immediately took servants and lanterns and called on the EnglishMan-of-War. The Man-of-War had gone to bed. It was nineo'clock."What for he send a certificate and go to bed? " Abd-el-Attiwants to know. "I not like the looks of it." He began to besuspicious of all the world.In the morning the gentleman returned our call. He did notknow or care whose rocket set fire to the town. Couldn't hurtthese towns much to burn them; small loss if all were burned.The governor had called on him to say that no damage wasdone. Our dragoman had, however, no right to accuse his ofbuying stolen rockets. His were bought in Cairo, etc. , etc.And the matter dropped amicably and without bloodshed. ButAbd-el-Atti's suspicions widened as he thought it over:-"What for de Governor come to me? What for he not go todat boat what fire de rocket? What for de Governor come beencall on me wid a rocket? The Governor never come been callon me wid a rocket before! "It is customary for all boats which are going above the firstcataract to stop at Esneh twenty-four hours to bake bread forthe crew; frequently they are detained longer, for the wheat hasto be bought, ground in one of the little ox- power mills, mixed 15226 STRIKING CONTRASTS OF ORIENTAL Life.and baked; and the crew hire a mill and oven for the time being,and perform the labor. We had sent sailors ahead to bake thebread, and it was ready in the morning; but we stayed over,according to immemorial custom. The sailors are entitled to aholiday, and they like to take it where there are plenty ofcoffee-houses and a large colony of Ghawazee girls.Esneh is not a bad specimen of an Egyptian town. There isa temple here, of which only the magnificent portico has beenexcavated; the remainder lies under the town. We descendsome thirty feet to get to the floor of the portico, -to such adepth has it been covered. And it is a modern temple, after all,of the period of the Roman occupation. We find here thecartouches of the Cæsars. The columns are elegant and coveredwith very good sculpture; each of the twenty-five has a differentcapital, and some are developed into a hint of the Corinthianand the composite. The rigid constraints of the Egyptian artare beginning to give way.The work in the period of the Romans differs much from theancient; it is less simple, more ornamented and debased. Thehieroglyphics are not so carefully and nicely cut. The figuresare not so free in drawing, and not so good as the old, exceptthat they show more anatomical knowledge, and begin to exhibita little thought of perspective. The later artists attempt towork out more details in the figure, to show muscles and variousmembers in more particularity. Some of the forms and faceshave much beauty, but most of them declare a decline of art, orperhaps an attempt to reconcile the old style with new knowledge, and consequent failure.We called on the governor. He was absent at the mosque,but his servant gave us coffee. The Oriental magnificence ofthe gubernatorial residence would impress the most faithlesstraveler. The entrance was through a yard that would be a fairhen-yard (for common fowl) at home, and the small apartmentinto which we were shown might serve for a stable; but it had adivan, some carpets and chairs, and three small windows. Itsroof was flat, made of rough split palm- trees covered with palmleaves. The governor's lady lives somewhere in the rear of thisTHE “KADI” IN HIS COURT OF JUSTICE. 227apartment of the ruler, in a low mud-house, of which we saw theoutside only.Passing near the government house, we stopped in to see thenew levy of soldiers, which amounts to some four hundred fromthis province. Men are taken between the ages of eighteen andtwenty-four, and although less than three per cent. of thoseliable are seized, the draft makes a tremendous excitement allalong the river. In some places the bazaars are closed andthere is a general panic as if pestilence had broken out.Outside the government house, and by the river bank, arewomen, squatting in the sand, black figures of woe and dirt,bewailing their relations taken away. In one mud-hovel thereis so much howling and vocal grief that we think at first afuneral is in progress. We are permitted to look into thelock-up where the recruits are detained waiting transportationdown the river. A hundred or two fellaheen, of the average asto nakedness and squalor of raiment, are crowded into a longroom with a dirt floor, and among them are many with heavychains on their ankles. These latter are murderers and thieves,awaiting trial or further punishment. It is in fact the jail, andthe soldiers are forced into this companionship until theirdeparture. One would say this is a bad nursery for patriots.The court of justice is in the anteroom of this prison; andthe two ought to be near together. The Kadi, or judge, sitscross-legged on the ground, and others squat around him,among them a scribe. When we enter, we are given seats on amat near the judge, and offered coffee and pipes. This issomething like a court of justice, sociable and friendly. It isimpossible to tell who is prisoner, who are witnesses, and whoare spectators. All are talking together, the prisoner (who ispointed out) louder than any other, the spectators all joining inwith the witnesses. The prisoner is allowed to " talk back,"which must be a satisfaction to him. When the hubbub subsides, the judge pronounces sentence; and probably he does aswell as an ordinary jury.The remainder of this town is not sightly. In fact I do notsuppose that six thousand people could live in one dirtier,228 WHAT WE SAW AT ASSOUAN.dustier, of more wretched houses; rows of unclean, shriveledwomen, with unclean babies, their eyes plastered with flies,sitting along the lanes called streets; plenty of men and boysin no better case as to clothing; but the men are physicallysuperior to the women. In fact we see no comely womenexcept the Ghawazees. Upon the provisions, the grain, thesweet- cakes exposed for sale on the ground, flies settle so thatall look black.Not more palaces and sugar-mills, O! Khedive, will savethis Egypt, but some plan that will lift these women out ofdirt and ignorance!Our next run is to Assouan. Let us sketch it rapidly, andindicate by a touch the panorama it unrolled for us.We are under way at daylight, leaving our two companionsof the race asleep. We go on with a good wind, and bylovely sloping banks of green; banks that have occasionallya New England-river aspect; but palm-trees are behind them,and beyond are uneven mountain ranges, the crumblinglimestone of which is so rosy in the sun. The wind freshens,and we spin along five miles an hour. The other boats havestarted, but they have a stern chase, and we lose them rounda bend.The atmosphere is delicious, a little under a summer heat,so that it is pleasant to sit in the sun; we seem to fly, withour great wings of sails, by the lovely shores. An idle mancould desire nothing more. The crew are cutting up thebread baked yesterday and spreading it on the deck to dry.They prefer this to bread made of bolted wheat; and it wouldbe very good, if it were not heavy and sour, and dirty to lookat, and somewhat gritty to the teeth.In the afternoon we pass the new, the Roman, and the oldtown of El Kab, back of which are the famous grottoes ofEilethyas with their pictures of domestic and agriculturallife. We go on famously, leaving Edfoo behind, to the tuneof five miles an hour; and, later, we can distinguish the topof the sail . of the Philæ at least ten miles behind. Beforedark we are abreast of the sandstone quarries of Silsilis, theA GALE ON THE WATER. 229most wonderful in the world, and the river is swift, narrowerand may be rocky. We have accomplished fifty- seven milessince morning, and wishing to make a day's run that shallastonish Egypt, we keep on in the dark. The wind increases,and in the midst of our career we go aground. We tug andpush and splash, however, get off the sand, and scud alongagain. In a few moments something happens. There is athump and a lurch, and bedlam breaks loose on deck.We have gone hard on the sand. The wind is blowingalmost a gale, and in the shadow of these hills the night isblack. Our calm steersman lets the boat swing right about,facing down-stream, the sail jibes, and we are in great peril ofupsetting, or carrying away yard, mast and all. The hubbubis something indescribable. The sailors are ordered aloft totake in the sail. They fear to do it. To venture out uponthat long slender yard, which is foul and threatens to snapevery moment, the wind whipping the loose sail, is no easy orsafe task. The yelling that ensues would astonish the regularservice. Reïs and sailors are all screaming together, andabove all can be heard the storming of the dragoman, who ismost alive to the danger, his voice broken with excitementand passion. The crew are crouching about the mast, interror, calling upon Mohammed. The reïs is muttering tothe Prophet, in the midst of his entreaty. Abd-el- Atti israpidly telling his beads, while he raves. At last Ahmedsprings up the rigging, and the others, induced by shame andthe butt- end of a hand- spike, follow him, and are drivenout along the shaking yard. Amid intense anxiety and withextreme difficulty, the sail is furled and we lie there, aground,with an anchor out, the wind blowing hard and the wavespounding us, as if we were making head against a gale at sea.A dark and wildish night it is, and a lonesome place, therocky shores dimly seen; but there is starlight. We shouldprefer to be tied to the bank, sheltered from the wind ratherthan lie swinging and pounding here. However, it shows usthe Nile in a new aspect. And another good comes out ofthe adventure. Ahmed, who saved the boat, gets a new suit230 RUINS OF KOM OMBOS.of clothes. Nobody in Egypt needed one more. A suit ofclothes is a blue cotton gown.The following morning (Sunday) is cold, but we are offearly as if nothing had happened, and run rapidly against thecurrent-or the current against us, which produces the impression of going fast. The river is narrower, the mountainscome closer to the shores, and there is, on either side, only ascant strip of vegetation. Egypt, along here, is really onlythree or four rods wide. The desert sands drift down to thevery shores, and the desert hills, broken, jagged, are savagewalls of enclosure.The Nile no doubt once rose annually and covered these nowbleached wastes, and made them fruitful. But that was longago. At Silsilis, below here, where the great quarries are, therewas once a rocky barrier, probably a fall, which set the Nileback, raising its level from here to Assouan. In some convulsion this was carried away. When? There is some evidenceon this point at hand. By ten o'clock we have rounded a longbend, and come to the temples of Kom Ombos, their greatcolumns conspicuous on a hill close to the river. They arerather fine structures, for the Ptolemies. One of them standsupon foundations of an ancient edifice built by Thothmes I.(eighteenth dynasty); and these foundations rests upon alluvialdeposit. Consequently the lowering of the Nile above Silsilis,probably by breaking through the rock-dam there, was beforethe time of Thothmes I. The Nile has never risen to the templesite since. These striking ruins are, however, destined to beswept away; opposite the bend where they stand a large sandisland is forming, and every hour the soil is washing fromunder them. Upon this sand-island this morning are flocks ofbirds, sunning themselves, and bevies of sand-grouse take wingat our approach. A crocodile also lifts his shoulders and lungesinto the water, when we get near enough to see his ugly scaleswith the glass.As we pass the desolate Kom Ombos, a solitary figure emergesfrom the ruins and comes down the slope of the sand-hill, withturban flowing, ragged cotton robe, and a long staff; he runs alongGREAT PREPARATIONS. 231the sandy shore and then turns away into the desert, like afleeing Cain, probably with no idea that it is Sunday, and thatthe “ first bell " is about to ring in Christian countries.The morning air is a little too sharp for idle comfort, althoughwe can sit in the sun on deck and read. This west wind comingfrom the mountains of the desert brings always cold weather,even in Nubia.Above Kom Ombos we come to a little village in a palm-grove-a scene out of the depths of Africa, -such as you have oftenseen in pictures-which is the theatre of an extraordinary commotion. There is enacted before us in dumb- show something likea pantomime in a play- house; but this is even more remote andenigmatical than that, and has in it all the elements of a pictureof savagery. In the interior ofAfrica are they not all children,and do they not spend their time in petty quarreling and fighting?On the beach below the village is moored a trading vessel,loaded with ivory, cinnamon, and gum- arabic, and manned byNubians, black as coals. People are climbing into this boat andjumping out of it, splashing in the water, in a state of greatexcitement; people are running along the shore, shouting andgesticulating wildly, flourishing long staves; parties are chasingeach other, and whacking their sticks together; and a blackfellow, in a black gown and white shoes, is chasing others withan uplifted drawn sword. It looks like war or revolution, picturesque war in the bright sun on the yellow sand, with allattention to disposition of raiment and color and strikingattitudes. There are hurryings to and fro, incessant clamorsof noise and shoutings and blows of cudgels; some are runningaway, and some are climbing into palm trees, but we notice thatno one is hit by cane or sword. Neither is anybody taken intocustody, though there is a great show of arresting somebody.It is a very animated encounter, and I am glad that we do notunderstand it.Sakiyas increase in number along the bank, taking the placeof the shadoof, and we are never out of hearing of their dolefulsongs. Labor here is not hurried. I saw five men digging a232 A LAND OF ETERNAL LEISURE.well in the bank-into which the Sakiya buckets dip; that is,there were four, stripped, coal-black slaves from Soudan superintended by an Arab. One man was picking up the dirt with apick-axe hoe. Three others were scraping out the dirt with acontrivance that would make a lazy man laugh; —one fellow heldthe long handle of a small scraper, fastened on like a shovel; tothis upright scraper two ropes were attached which the twoothers pulled, indolently, thus gradually scraping the dirt out ofthe hole a spoonful at a time. One man with a shovel wouldhave thrown it out four times as fast. But why should it bethrown out in a hurry? Must we always intrude our haste intothis land of eternal leisure?By afternoon, the wind falls, and we loiter along. The desertapparently comes close to the river on each side. On one bankare a hundred camels, attended by a few men and boys, browsingon the coarse tufts of grass and the scraggy bushes; the hardsurroundings suit the ungainly animals. It is such pictures ofa life, differing in all respects from ours, that we come to see. Alittle boat with a tattered sail is towed along close to the bankby half a dozen ragged Nubians, who sing a not unmelodiousrefrain as they walk and pull, -better at any rate than the groanofthe sakiyas.There is everywhere a sort of Sabbath calm—a common thinghere, no doubt, and of great antiquity. It must be easy here tokeep not only Sunday but all the days of the week.As we advance the scenery becomes more Nubian, the rivernarrower and apparently smaller, when it should seem larger.This phenomenon of a river having more and more water as weascend, is one that we cannot get accustomed to. The Nile,having no affluents, loses, of course, continually by evaporation,by canals, and the constant drain on it for irrigation. No wonderthe Egyptians were moved by its mystery no less than by itsbeneficence to a sort of worship ofit.The rocks are changing their character; granite begins toappear amid the limestone and sandstone. Along here, sevenor eight miles below Assouan, there is no vegetation in sight fromthe boat, except strips of thrifty palm-trees, but there must beTOWARDS THE HEART OF AFRICA. 233soil beyond, for the sakiyas are always creaking. The character of the population is changed also; above Kom Ombos it ismostly Nubian-who are to the Fellaheen as granite is to sandstone. The Nubian hills lift up their pyramidal forms in thesouth , and we seem to be getting into real Africa.



AT LAST, twenty-four days from Cairo, the Nubian hillsare in sight, lifting themselves up in the south, and weappear to be getting into the real Africa-Africa, whichstill keeps its barbarous secret, and dribbles down this commercial highway the Nile, as it has for thousands of years, itsgums and spices and drugs, its tusks and skins of wildanimals, its rude weapons and its cunning work in silver, itsslave-boys and slave-girls. These native boats that we meet,piled with strange and fragrant merchandise, rowed by anticcrews of Nubians whose ebony bodies shine in the sun asthey walk backward and forward at the long sweeps, chantinga weird, barbarous refrain, -what tropical freights are thesefor the imagination!At sunset we are in a lonesome place, the swift river flowingbetween narrow rocky shores, the height beyond Assouangrey in the distance, and vultures watching our passing boatfrom the high crumbling sandstone ledges. The night fallssweet and cool, the soft new moon is remote in the almostpurple depths, the thickly strewn stars blaze like jewels, andwe work slowly on at the rate of a mile an hour, with theslightest wind, amid the granite rocks of the channel . In thischannel we are in the shadow of the old historical seat ofempire, the island of Elephantine; and, turning into the narrow passage to the left, we announce by a rocket to thedahabeëhs moored at Assouan the arrival of another inquisitive American. It is Sunday night. Our dragoman des234THE ISLAND OF ELEPHANTINE. 235patches a messenger to the chief reïs of the cataract, who livesat Philæ, five miles above. A second one is sent in thecourse of the night; and a third meets the old patriarch onhis way to our boat at sunrise. It is necessary to impress theOriental mind with the importance of the travelers who havearrived at the gate of Nubia.The Nile voyager who moors his dahabeëh at the sandbank, with the fleet of merchant boats, above Assouan, seemsto be at the end of his journey. Travelers from the days ofHerodotus even to this century have followed each other insaying that the roar of the cataract deafened the people formiles around. Civilization has tamed the rapids. Now thereis neither sight nor sound of them here at Assouan. To thesouthward, the granite walls which no doubt once dammedthe river have been broken through by some pre-historicconvulsion that strewed the fragments about in grotesqueconfusion. The island of Elephantine, originally a long heap ofgranite, is thrown into the middle of the Nile, dividing it intotwo narrow streams. The southern end rises from the water, abold mass of granite . Its surface is covered with ruins, orrather with the débris of many civilizations; and into this massand hills of brick, stone, pottery and ashes, Nubian women andchildren may be seen constantly poking, digging out coins,beads and images, to sell to the howadji. The north portion ofthe island is green with wheat; and it supports two or threemud-villages, which offer a good field for the tailor and the missionary.The passage through the east channel, between Assouan andElephantine, is through walls of granite rocks; and southwardat the end of it the view is bounded by a field of broken granitegradually rising, and apparently forbidding egress in that direction. If the traveler comes for scenery, as some do, nothingcould be wilder and at the same time more beautiful than thesefantastically piled crags; but considered as a navigable highway the river here is a failure.Early in the morning the head sheykh of the cataract comeson board, and the long confab which is preliminary to any236 UNCERTAIN HELP.undertaking, begins. There are always as many difficulties inthe way of a trade or an arrangement as there are quills on aporcupine; and a great part of the Egyptian bargaining is thepreliminary plucking out of these quills. The cataracts are thehereditary property of the Nubian sheykhs and their tribes wholive near them-belonging to them more completely than therapids of the St. Lawrence to the Indian pilots; almost theirwhole livelihood comes from helping boats up and down therapids, and their harvest season is the winter when the dahabeëhsof the howadji require their assistance. They magnify thedifficulties and dangers and make a mystery of their skill andknowledge. But, with true Orientalism, they appear to seekrather to lessen than to increase their business. They opposeintolerable delays to the traveler, keep him waiting at Assouanby a thousand excuses, and do all they can to drive himdiscouraged down the river. During this winter boats havebeen kept waiting two weeks on one frivolous excuse or another-the day was unlucky, or the wind was unfavorable, or someprince had the preference. Princes have been very much in theway this winter; the fact would seem to be that Europeanprinces are getting to run up the Nile in shoals, as plenty asshad in the Connecticut, more being hatched at home thanEurope has employment for.Several thousand people, dwelling along the banks fromAssouan to three or four miles above Philæ, share in the profitsof the passing boats; and although the sheykhs, and head reïses(or captains) of the cataract get the elephant's share, everyfamily receives something-it may be only a piastre or two-oneach dahabeëh; and the sheykhs draw from the villages as manymen as are required for each passage. It usually takes two daysfor a boat to go up the cataract and not seldom they are keptin it three or four days, and sometimes a week. The first daythe boat gets as far as the island of Séhayl, where it ties up andwaits for the cataract people to gather next morning. Theymay take it into their heads not to gather, in which case thetraveler can sun himself all day on the rocks, or hunt up theinscriptions which the Pharaohs, on their raids into Africa forAN ORIENTAL CONFAB. 237slaves and other luxuries, cut in the granite in their days ofleisure three or four thousand years ago, before the world got itspresent impetus of hurry. Or they may come and pull the boatup a rapid or two, then declare they have not men enough forthe final struggle, and leave it for another night in the roaringdesolation. To put on force enough, and cables strong enoughnot to break, and promptly drag the boat through in one daywould lessen the money-value of the achievement perhaps, in themind of the owner of the boat. Nature has done a great dealto make the First Cataract an obstacle to navigation , but thewily Nubian could teach nature a lesson; at any rate he hasnever relinquished the key to the gates. He owns the cataractsas the Bedowees own the pyramids of Geezeh and the routesacross the desert to Sinai and Petra.The aged reïs comes on board; and the preliminary ceremonies, exchange of compliments, religious and social, betweenhim and our astute dragoman begin. Coffee is made, the reïs'spipe is lighted, and the conversation is directed slowly to theascent of the cataracts. The head reïs is accompanied by twoor three others of inferior dignity and by attendants who squaton the deck in attitudes of patient indifference.The world wasnot made in a day. The reïs looks along the deck and says:"This boat is very large; it is too long to go up the cataract. "There is no denying it. The dahabeëh is larger than almostany other on the river; it is one hundred and twenty feet long.The dragoman says:"Butyou took up General McClellan's boat, and that is large. ""Very true, effendi; but why the howadji no come whenGenel Clemen come, ten days ago? ""We chose to come now. "ས"Such a long boat never went up. Why you no come twomonths ago when the river was high? "This sort of talkgoes on for half an hour. Then the other sheykh speaks:-"What is the use of talking all this stuff to MohammedAbd-el-Atti Effendi; he knows all about it.""That is true. We will go. ""Well, it is ' finish '," says Abd-cl- Atti.238 ARTICLES of virtu.When the long negotiation is concluded, the reïs is introduced into the cabin to pay his respects to the howadji; heseats himself with dignity and salutes the ladies with awatchful self- respect. The reïs is a grown Nubian, with finelycut features but a good many shades darker than would befellowshipped by the Sheltering Wings Association in America, small feet, and small hands with long tapering fingers thatconfess an aristocratic exemption from manual labor. Hewears a black gown, and a white turban; a camel's hair scarfdistinguishes him from the vulgar. This sheykh boasts Isuppose as ancient blood as runs in any aristocratic veins,counting his ancestors back in unbroken succession to thedays of the Prophet at least, and not improbably to Ishmael.That he wears neither stockings nor slippers does not detractfrom his simple dignity. Our conversation while he pays hisvisit is confined to the smoking of a cigar and some wellmeant grins and smiles of mutual good feeling.While the morning hours pass, we have time to gather allthe knowledge of Assouan that one needs for the enjoyment oflife in this world. It is an ordinary Egyptian town of sunbaked brick, brown, dusty and unclean, with shabby bazaarscontaining nothing, and full of importunate beggars andinsatiable traders in curiosities of the upper country. Importunate venders beset the traveler as soon as he steps ashore,offering him all manner of trinkets which he is eager topurchase and doesn't know what to do with when he getsthem. There are crooked, odd-shaped knives and daggers, inornamental sheaths of crocodile skin, and savage spears withgreat round hippopotamus shields from Kartoom or Abyssinia; jagged iron spears and lances and ebony clubs fromDarfoor; cunning Nubian silver- work, bracelets and greatrings that have been worn by desert camel- drivers; moth- eatenostrich feathers; bows and arrows tipped with flint from theSoudan, necklaces of glass and dirty leather charms (containing words from the Koran); broad bracelets and anklets cutout of big tusks of elephants and traced in black, rude swordsPREPARING FOR THE ASCENT. 239that it needs two hands to swing; bracelets of twisted silvercord and solid silver as well; earrings so large that they needto be hitched to a strand of the hair for support; nose- ringsof brass and silver and gold, as large as the earrings; and"Nubian costumes " for women—a string with leather fringedepending to tie about the loins-suggestions of a tropicallife under the old dispensation.The beach, crowded with trading vessels and piled up withmerchandise, presents a lively picture. There are piles ofManchester cotton and boxes of English brandy-to warmoutwardly and inwardly the natives of the Soudan-which arebeing loaded, for transport above the rapids, upon kneelingdromedaries which protest against the load in that mostvulgar guttural of all animal sounds, more uncouth and lessmusical than the agonized bray of the donkey-a sort ofgrating menagerie-grumble which has neither the pathos ofthe sheep's bleat nor the dignity of the lion's growl; and balesof cinnamon and senna and ivory to go down the river. Thewild Bisharee Arab attends his dromedaries; he has a clearcut and rather delicate face, is bareheaded, wears his blackhair in ringlets long upon his shoulders, and has for all dressa long strip of brown cotton cloth twisted about his body andhis loins, leaving his legs and his right arm free. There arethe fat, sleek Greek merchant, in sumptuous white Orientalcostume, lounging amid his merchandise; the Syrian in gayapparel, with pistols in his shawl-belt, preparing for hisjourney to Kartoom; and the black Nubian sailors asleep onthe sand. To add a little color to the picture, a Ghawazee, ordancing-girl, in striped flaming gown and red slippers, darkbut comely, covered with gold or silver-gilt necklaces andbracelets, is walking about the shore, seeking whom she maydevour.At twelve o'clock we are ready to push off. The wind isstrong from the north. The cataract men swarm on board,two or three Sheykhs and thirty or forty men. They takecommand and possession of the vessel, and our reïs and crewgive way. We have carefully closed the windows and blinds240 A MEAL BY THE WAY.of our boat, for the cataract men are reputed to have longarms and fingers that crook easily. The Nubians run aboutlike cats; four are at the helm, some are on the bow, all aretalking and giving orders; there is an indescribable bustle andwhirl as our boat is shoved off from the sand, with the chorusof " Hā! Yālēsah . Hā! Yālēsah! " * and takes the current.The great sail shaped like a bird's wing and a hundred feetlong, is shaken out forward, and we pass swiftly on our waybetween the granite walls. The excited howadji are on deckfeeling to their finger ends the thrill of expectancy.The first thing the Nubians want is something to eat-achronic complaint here in this land of romance. Squattingin circles all over the boat they dip their hands into the bowlsof softened bread, cramming the food down their throats, andswallow all the coffee that can be made for them, with thegusto and appetite of simple men who have a stomach and noconscience.While the Nubians are chattering and eating, we are glidingup the swift stream, the granite rocks opening a passage for us;but at the end of it our way seems to be barred. The only visibleopening is on the extreme left, where a small stream strugglesthrough the boulders. While we are wondering if that can beour course, the helm is suddenly put hard about, and we thenshoottothe right, finding our way, amid whirlpools and bouldersofgranite, past the head of Elephantine island; and before we haverecovered from this surprise we turn sharply to the left into anarrow passage, and the cataract is before us.It is not at all what we have expected. In appearence this isa cataract without any falls and scarcely any rapids. A personbrought up on Niagara or Montmorency feels himself trifled withYalesah (I spell the name according the sound of the pronunciation) was,some say, one of the sons of Noah who was absent at the time the ark sailed,having gone down into Abyssinia. They pushed the ark in pursuit of him,and Noah called after his son, as the crew poled along, "Ha! Yalesah! "And still the Nile boatmen call Yalesah to come, as they push the poles andhaul the sail, and urge the boat toward Abyssinia. Very likely “ Ha! Yalesah" (as I catch it) is only a corruption of " Halee! ' Eesa; " Seyyidnà ' Eesà isthe Moslem name for " Our Lord Jesus.”FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF THE CATARACT. The fishermen in the mountain streams of America hascome upon many a scene that resembles this—a river-bed strewnwith boulders. Only, this is on a grand scale. We had been ledto expect at least high precipices, walls of lofty rock, betweenwhich we should sail in the midst of raging rapids and falls; andthat there would be hundreds of savages on the rocks abovedragging our boat with cables, and occasionally plunging intothe torrent in order to carry a life-line to the top of some seagirt rock. All of this we did not see; but yet we have morerespect for the cataract before we get through it than when it first came in sight.What we see immediately before us is a basin, it may be aquarter of a mile, it may be half a mile broad, and two miles long; a wild expanse of broken granite rocks and bouldersstrewn hap-hazard, some of them showing the red of the syeniteand others black and polished and shining in the sun; a field ofrocks, none of them high, of fantastic shapes; and through thisfield the river breaks in a hundred twisting passages and chutes,all apparently small, but the water in them is foaming and leapingand flashing white; and the air begins to be pervaded by themultitudinous roar of rapids. On the east, the side of the landpassage between Assouan and Phile, were high and jaggedrocks in odd forms, now and then a palm-tree, and here and there ahemmedmud-village. On the west the basin of the cataract is in by thedeserthills, andtheyellowLibyansanddriftsoverthemin shiningwavesand rifts, whichin somelightshavethealmostmarooncolorthatwe see in Gerome'spictures.the south is an impassable barrier of granite and sandmountains of them-beyond the glistening fields of rocks andwater through which we are to find our way.comeThe difficulty of this navigation is not one cataract to be over- byone heroic effort, but a hundred little cataracts orswift tortuous sluiceways, which are much more formidable whenwedahabeëhs get into them than they are when seen at a distance. The which attempt to wind through them are in constant danger ofhaving holes knocked in their hulls by the rocks.The wind is strong, and we are sailing swiftly on.It is im16242 AGAINST THE STREAM.possible to tell which one of the half-dozen equally uninvitingchannels we are to take. We guess, and of course point out thewrong one. We approach, with sails still set, a narrow passagethrough which the water pours in what is a very respectabletorrent; but it is not a straight passage, it has a bend in it; ifwe get through it, we must make a sharp turn to the left or runupon a ridge of rocks, and even then we shall be in a boilingsurge; and if we fail to make head against the current we shallgo whirling down the caldron, bumping on the rocks-not apleasant thing for a dahabeëh one hundred and twenty feet longwith a cabin in it as large as a hotel. The passage of a boat ofthis size is evidently an event of some interest to the cataractpeople, for we see groups of them watching us from the rocks,and following along the shore. And we think that seeing ourboat go up from the shore might be the best way of seeing it.We draw slowly in, the boat trembling at the entrance of theswift water; it enters, nosing the current, feeling the tug of thesail, and hesitates. Oh, for a strong puff of wind! There arefive watchful men at the helm; there is a moment's silence, andthe boat still hesitates. At this critical instant, while we holdour breath, a naked man, whose name I am sorry I cannot giveto an admiring American public, appears on the bow with a ropein his teeth; he plunges in and makes for the nearest rock. Heswims hand over hand, swinging his arms from the shoulders outofwater and striking them forward splashing along like a sidewheeler-the common way of swimming in the heavy water ofthe Nile. Two other black figures follow him and the rope ismade fast to the point of the rock. We have something to holdus against the stream.And now a terrible tumult arises on board the boat which isseen to be covered with men; one gang is hauling on the ropetodraw the great sail close to its work; another gang is hauling onthe rope attached to the rock, and both are singing that wildchanting chorus without which no Egyptian sailors pull anounce or lift a pound; the men who are not pulling are shoutingand giving orders; the Sheykhs, on the upper deck where we sitwith American serenity exaggerated amid the babel, are jumpingTHE SHEYKHS CONFABULATE. 243up and down in a frenzy of excitement, screaming and gesticulating.We hold our own; we gain a little; we pull forwardwhere the danger of a smash against the rocks is increased.More men appear on the rocks, whom we take to be spectatorsof our passage. No; they lay hold of the rope. With the additional help we still tremble in the jaws of the pass. I walkaft, and the stern is almost upon the rocks; it grazes them; butin the nick of time the bow swings round, we turn short off intoan eddy; the great wing of a sail is let go, and our cat-likesailors are aloft, crawling along the slender yard, which is ahundred feet in length, and furling the tugging canvas. Webreathe more freely, for the first danger is over. The first gate ispassed.In this lull there is a confab with the Sheykhs. We are at theisland of Seháyl, and have accomplished what is usually the firstday's journey of boats. It would be in harmony with the Orientalto stop here for the remainder of the day and the night.But our dragoman has in mind to accomplish, if not the impossible, what is synonomous with it in the East, the unusual. Theresult ofthe inflammatory stump- speeches on both sides is thattwo or three gold pieces are passed into the pliant hand of thehead Sheykh, and he sends for another Sheykh and more men.For some time we have been attended by increasing processionsof men and boys on shore; they cheered us as we passed thefirst rapid; they came out from the villages, from the crevices ofthe rocks, their blue and white gowns flowing in the wind, andmake a sort of holiday of our passage. Less conspicuous at firstare those without gowns-they are hardly distinguishable fromthe black rocks amid which they move.As we lie here, withroar of the rapids in our ears, we can see no further opening for our passage.therisingButwe are preparing to go on. Ropes are carried outWeforward overtherocks. Moremen appear, to aidus.Isaidthere werefifty.From therearewhenceat leastninety. Theycomeup by a sortof magic.are they, theseblackforms?We count seventy; we count eighty;They seem to grow out ofthe rocks at the wave of the Sheykh's hand; they244 A MOMENT OF EXCITEMENT.are ofthe same color, shining men of granite. The swimmersand divers are simply smooth statues hewn out of the syeniteor the basalt. They are not unbaked clay like the rest of us.One expects to see them disappear like stones when theyjump into the water. The mode of our navigation is to drawthe boat along, hugged close to the shore rocks, so closelythat the current cannot get full hold of it, and thus to workit round the bends.We are crawling slowly on in this manner, clinging to therocks, when unexpectedly a passage opens to the left. Thewater before us runs like a mill-race. If we enter it, nothingwould seem to be able to hold the boat from dashing downamidst the breakers. But the bow is hardly let to feel thecurrent before it is pulled short round, and we are swingingin the swift stream. Before we know it we are in the anxietyof another tug. Suppose the rope should break! In aninstant the black swimmers are overboard striking out for therocks; two ropes are sent out, and secured; and, the gangshauling on them, we are working inch by inch through,everybody on board trembling with excitement. We look atour watches; it seems only fifteen minutes since we leftAssouan; it is an hour and a quarter. Do we gain in thechute? It is difficult to say; the boat hangs back and strainsat the cables; but just as we are in the pinch of doubt, the bigsail unfurls its wing with exciting suddenness, a strong gustcatches it, we feel the lift, and creep upward, amid an infernaldin of singing and shouting and calling on the Prophet fromthe gangs who haul in the sail - rope, who tug at the cablesattached to the rocks, who are pulling at the hawsers on theshore. We forge ahead and are about to dash into a boilingcaldron before us, from which there appears to be no escape,when a skillful turn of the great creaking helm once morethrows us to the left, and we are again in an eddy with thestream whirling by us, and the sail is let go and is furled.The place where we lie is barely long enough to admit ourboat; its stern just clears the rocks, its bow is aground onhard sand. The number of men and boys on the rocks hasTHE GRANITE MAN. 245increased; it is over one hundred, it is one hundred andthirty; on a re-count it is one hundred and fifty. An anchoris now carried out to hold us in position when we makea new start; more ropes are taken to the shore, two hitchedto the bow and one to the stern. Straight before us is anarrow passage through which the water comes in foamingridges with extraordinary rapidity. It seems to be our way;but of course it is not. We are to turn the corner sharply,before reaching it; what will happen then we shall see.There is a slight lull in the excitement, while the extrahawsers are got out and preparations are made for the nextstruggle. The sheykhs light their long pipes, and squattingon deck gravely wait. The men who have tobacco roll up cigarettes and smoke them. The swimmers come on boardfor reinforcement. The poor fellows are shivering as if theyhad an ague fit. The Nile may be friendly, though it doesnot offer a warm bath at this time of the year, but when theycome out of it naked on the rocks the cold north wind setstheir white teeth chattering. The dragoman brings out abottle of brandy. It is none of your ordinary brandy, butmust have cost over a dollar a gallon, and would burn a hole in anew piece of cotton cloth. He pours out a tumblerful of it, and offers it to one of the granite men. The granite manpours it down his throat in one flow, without moving aneye must-winker, and holds the glass out for another. His lined with zinc. A second tumblerful follows theIsaidIt is like pouring liquor into a brazen image. there was a lull, but this is only in contrast to the precedingfury. There is still noise enough, over and abovethe roarof the waters, in the preparations going forward, thehundred people screaming together, each one givingorders, and elaborating his opinion by a rhetorical use of hisdinof ahands.itself The waiting crowd scattered over the rocks disposespicturesquely, as an Arab crowd always does, andprobably white cannot help doing, in its blue and white gowns and turbans.In the midst of these preparations, andunmindful ofany excitement or confusion, a Sheykh, standing246 AUDACIOUS SWIMMERS.upon a little square of sand amid the rocks, and so close to thedeck of the boat that we can hear his " Alláhoo Akbar " (God ismost Great), begins his kneelings and prostrations towardsMecca, and continues at his prayers, as undisturbed and asunregarded as if he were in a mosque, and wholly obliviousof the babel around him. So common has religion become inthis land of its origin! Here is a half- clad Sheykh of thedesert stopping, in the midst of his contract to take thehowadji up the cataract, to raise his forefinger and say, "Itestify that there is no deity but God; and I testify thatMohammed is his servant and his apostle."Judging by the eye, the double turn we have next to makeis too short to admit our long hull. It does not seem possiblethat we can squeeze through; but we try. We first swingout and take the current as if we were going straight up therapids. We are held by two ropes from the stern, while byfour ropes from the bow, three on the left shore and one onan islet to the right, the cataract people are tugging to drawus up. As we watch almost breathless the strain on theropes, look! there is a man in the tumultuous rapid before usswiftly coming down as if to his destruction. Another onefollows, and then another, till there are half a dozen men andboys in this jeopardy, this situation of certain death toanybody not made of cork. And the singular thing about itis that the men are seated upright, sliding down the shiningwater like a boy, who has no respect for his trowsers, down asnow-bank. As they dash past us, we see that each man isseated on a round log about five feet long; some of them situpright with their legs on the log, displaying the soles oftheir feet, keeping the equilibrium with their hands. Theseare smooth slimy logs that a white man would find it difficultto sit on if they were on shore, and in this water they wouldturn with him only once-the log would go one way and theman another. But these fellows are in no fear of the rocksbelow; they easily guide their barks out of the rushing floods,through the whirlpools and eddies, into the slack shore-waterin the rear of the boat, and stand up like men and demandCLOSE STEERING. 247backsheesh. These logs are popular ferry-boats in the UpperNile; I have seen a woman crossing the river on one, herclothes in a basket and the basket on her head-and the Nileis nowhere an easy stream to swim.Far ahead of us the cataract people are seen in lines andgroups, half-hidden by the rocks, pulling and stumblingalong; black figures are scattered along lifting the ropesover the jagged stones, and freeing them so that we shall notbe drawn back, as we slowly advance; and severe as their toilis, it is not enough to keep them warm when the chilly windstrikes them. They get bruised on the rocks also, and havetime to show us their barked shins and request backsheesh.An Egyptian is never too busy or too much in peril to forgetto prefer that request at the sight of a traveler. When weturn into the double twist I spoke of above, the bow goessideways upon a rock, and the stern is not yet free. The puntpoles are brought into requisition; half the men are in thewater; there is poling and pushing and grunting, heaving,and " Yah Mohammed, Yah Mohammed," with all whichnoise and outlay of brute strength, the boat moves a little onand still is held close in hand. The current runs very swiftlyWe have to turn almost by a right angle to the left and thenby the same angle to the right; and the question is whetherthe boat is not too long to turn in the space. We just scrapealong the rocks, the current growing every moment stronger,and at length get far enough to let the stern swing. I runback to see if it will go free. It is a close fit. The stern isclear; but if our boat had been four or five feet longer, hervoyage would have ended then and there. There is nowbefore us a straight pull up the swiftest and narrowest rapidwe have thus far encountered.Our sandal -the row-boat belonging to the dahabeëh, thatbecomes a felucca when a mast is stepped into it—which hasaccompanied us fitfully during the passage, appearing here andthere tossing about amid the rocks, and aiding occasionally inthe transport of ropes and men to one rock and another, nowturns away to seek a less difficult passage. The rocks all about248 A COMICAL ORCHESTRA.·us are low, from three feet to ten feet high. We have one rope outahead, fastened to a rock, upon which stand a gang of men,pulling. There is a row of men in the water under the left side ofthe boat, heaving at her with their broad backs, to prevent hersmashing on the rocks. But our main dragging force is in thetwo long lines of men attached to the ropes on the left shore.They stretch out ahead of us so far that it needs an opera- glassto discover whether the leaders are pulling or only soldiering.These two long struggling lines are led and directed by a newfigure who appears upon this operatic scene. It is a comicalSheykh, who stands upon a high rock at one side and lines outthe catch-lines of a working refrain, while the gangs howl andhaul, in a surging chorus. Nothing could be wilder or moreludicrous, in the midst of this roar of rapids and strain ofcordage. The Sheykh holds a long staff which he swings likethe baton of the leader of an orchestra, quite unconscious of theodd figure he cuts against the blue sky. He grows more andmore excited, he swings his arms, he shrieks, but always in tuneand in time with the hauling and the wilder chorus of thecataract men, he lifts up his right leg, he lifts up his left leg, heis in the very ecstasy of the musical conductor, displaying hiswhite teeth, and raising first one leg and then the other in adelirious swinging motion, all the more picturesque on accountof his flowing blue robe and his loose white cotton drawers.He lifts his leg with a gigantic pull, which is enough in itself todraw the boat onward, and every time he lifts it, the boat gainson the current. Surely such an orchestra and such a leader wasnever seen before. For the orchestra is scattered over half anacre of ground, swaying and pulling and singing in rhythmicshow, and there is a high wind and a blue sky, and rocks andfoaming torrents, and an African village with palms in the background, amid the debris of the great convulsion of nature whichhas resulted in this chaos. Slowly we creep up against thestiff boiling stream, the good Moslems on deck muttering prayersand telling their beads, and finally make the turn and pass theworst eddies; and as we swing round into an ox-bow channelto the right, the big sail is again let out and hauled in, and withTHE FINAL STRUGGLE. 249cheers we float on some rods and come into a quiet shelter, astage beyond the journey usually made the first day. It is now three o'clock.We have come to the real cataract, to the stiffest pull and themost dangerous passage.A small freight dahabeëh obstructs the way, and while this isbeing hauled ahead, we prepare for the final struggle. Thechief cataract is called Bab (gate) Aboo Rabbia, from one ofMohammed Ali's captains who some years ago vowed that hewould take his dahabeëh up it with his own crew and withoutaid from the cataract people. He lost his boat. It is alsosometimes called Bab Inglese from a young Englishman, namedCave, who attempted to swim down it early one morning, in imitation of the Nubian swimmers, and was drawn into thewhirlpools, and not found for days after. For this last struggle,in addition to the other ropes, an enormous cable is bent on, nottied to the bow, but twisted round the cross-beams of the forwarddeck, and carried out over the rocks. From the shelter wherewe lie we are to push out and take the current at a sharp angle.The water of this main cataract sucks down from both sidesabove through a channel perhaps one hundred feet wide, veryrapid and with considerable fall, and with such force as to raisea ridge in the middle. To pull up this hill of water is the tug;if the ropes let go we shall be dashed into a hundred pieces onthe rocks below and be swallowed in the whirlpools. It wouldnot be a sufficient compensation for this fate to have this rapid hereafter take our name.Thepreparationsareleisurelymade, thelinesarelaidalongtherocksandthemenaredistributed.Thefasteningsarecarefullyexamined.Thenwebegintomove.Therearenowfourconductorsof thisgiganticorchestra(theemploymentofwhichasamusicalnoveltyI respectfullyrecommendtothenextBostonJubilee), eachpostedona highrock, andwavinga stickwithawhiteragconsumedin raisingthecurtainfor thelastact.tied to it. It is now four o'clock. An hour has beenWe are now carefully under way along the rocks which are almost withinreach, held tight by the side ropes, but pushed off and slowly250 APPROACHING SUCCESS.urged along by a line of half-naked fellows under the left side,whose backs are against the boat and whose feet walk along theperpendicular ledge. It would take only a sag of the boat,apparently, to crush them. It does not need our eyes to tellus when the bow of the boat noses the swift water. Our sandalhas meantime carried a line to a rock on the opposite side ofthe channel, and our sailors haul on this and draw us ahead.But we are held firmly by the shore lines. The boat is neversuffered, as I said, to get an inch the advantage, but is alwaysheld tight in hand.As we appear at the foot of the rapid, men come riding downit on logs as before, a sort of horseback feat in the boilingwater, steering themselves round the eddies and landing belowus. One of them swims round to the rock where a line is tied,and looses it as we pass; another, sitting on the slippery stickand showing the white soles of his black feet, paddles himselfabout amid the whirlpools. We move so slowly that we havetime to enjoy all these details, to admire the deep yellow of theLibyan sand drifted over the rocks at the right, and to cheer asandal bearing the American flag which is at this momentshooting the rapids in another channel beyond us, tossed aboutlike a cork. We see the meteor flag flashing out, we lose itbehind the rocks, and catch it again appearing below. " Oh starspang "-but our own orchestra is in full swing again. Thecomical Sheykh begins to swing his arms and his stick backand forth in an increasing measure, until his whole body is drawninto the vortex of his enthusiasm, and one leg after the other, bya sort of rhythmic hitch, goes up displaying the white and baggycotton drawers. The other three conductors join in, and adeafening chorus from two hundred men goes up along the ropes,while we creep slowly on amid the suppressed excitement ofthose on board who anxiously watch the straining cables, andwith a running fire of " backsheesh, backsheesh," from the boyson the rocks close at hand. The cable holds; the boat nagsand jerks at it in vain; through all the roar and rush we go on,lifted I think perceptibly every time the sheykh lifts his leg.At the right moment the sail is again shaken down; and theTRIUMPHANT! 251boat at once feels it. It is worth five hundred men. The ropesslacken; we are going by the wind against the current; haste ismade to unbend the cable; line after line is let go until we areheld by one alone; the crowd thins out, dropping away with nowarning and before we know that the play is played out, thecataract people have lost all interest in it and are scatteringover the black rocks to their homes. A few stop to cheer; thechief conductor is last seen on a rock, swinging the white rag,hurrahing and salaaming in grinning exultation; the last line iscast off, and we round the point and come into smooth but swiftwater, and glide into a calm wind. The noise, the struggle,the tense strain, the uproar of men and waves for four hoursare all behind; and hours of keener excitement and enjoymentwe have rarely known. At 12.20 we left Assouan; at 4.45 weswung round the rocky bend above the last and greatest rapid.I write these figures , for they will be not without a melancholyinterest to those who have spent two or three days or a weekin making this passage.Turning away from the ragged mountains of granite whichobstruct the straight course of the river, we sail by Mahatta, alittle village of Nubians, a port where the trading and freightboats plying between the First and Second Cataract load andunload. There is a forest of masts and spars along the shorewhich is piled with merchandise, and dotted with sunlitfigures squatting in the sand as if waiting for the goods totranship themselves. With the sunlight slanting on our fullsail, we glide into the shadow of high rocks, and enter, withthe suddenness of a first discovery, into a deep winding river,the waters of which are dark and smooth, between lofty walls ofgranite. These historic masses, which have seen pass so manysplendid processions and boastful expeditions of conquest inwhat seems to us the twilight of the world, and which excitedthe wonder of Father Herodotus only the other day, almost inour own time (for the Greeks belong to us and not toantiquity as it now unfolds itself), are piled in strange shapes,tottling rock upon rock, built up grotesquely, now in likenessof an animal, or the gigantic profile of a human face, or252 THE TEMPLE OF ISIS.temple walls and castle towers and battlements. We windthrough this solemn highway, and suddenly, in the verygateway, Phile! The lovely! Phile, the most sentimentalruin in Egypt. There are the great pylon of the temple ofIsis, the long colonnades of pillars, the beautiful squaretemple, with lofty columns and elongated capitals, misnamed Pharaoh's bed. The little oblong island, somethinglike twelve hundred feet long, banded all round by an artificialwall, an island of rock completely covered with ruins, is setlike the stone of a ring, with a circle of blue water about it , inthe clasp of higher encircling granite peaks and ledges. On theleft bank, as we turn to pass to the east of the island, is agigantic rock which some persons have imagined was a colossusonce, perhaps in pre-Adamic times, but which now has noresemblance to human shape, except in a breast and left arm.Some Pharaoh cut his cartouche on the back-a sort of postagestamp to pass the image along down the ages. The Pharaohswere a vulgar lot; they cut their names wherever they couldfind a conspicuous and smooth place.While we are looking, distracted with novelty at every turnand excited by a grandeur and loveliness opening upon us everymoment, we have come into a quiet haven, shut in on all sidesby broken ramparts, -alone with this island of temples. Thesunis about to set, and its level light comes to us through thecolumns, and still gilds with red and yellow gold the Libyansand sifted over the cliffs. We moor at once to a sand-bankwhich has formed under the broken walls, and at once step onshore. We climb to the top of the temple walls; we walk onthe stone roof; we glance into the temple on the roof, where issculptured the resurrection of Osiris. This cannot be called anold temple. It is a creation of the Ptolemies, though it doubtlessreplaced an older edifice. The temple of Isis was not begunmore than three centuries before our era. Not all of thesestructures were finished-the priests must have been still carvingon their walls these multitudes of sculptures, when Christ beganhis mission; and more than four centuries after that themysterious rites of Isis were still celebrated in these darkANCIENT KINGS AND MODERN CONQUErors. 253chambers. It is silent and dead enough here now; and therelives nowhere upon the earth any man who can even conceivethe state of mind that gave those rites vitality. Even Egypt haschanged its superstitions.Peace has come upon the earth after the strain of the last fewhours. We can scarcely hear the roar of the rapids, in thebeating of which we had been. The sun goes, leaving a changingyellow and faint orange on the horizon. Above in the west isthe crescent moon; and now all the sky thereabout is rosy,even to the zenith, a delicate and yet deep color, like that of theblush-rose-a transparent color that glows. A little later we seefrom our boat the young moon through the columns of the lessertemple. The January night is clear and perfectly dry; no dewis falling-no dew ever falls here-and the multiplied stars burnwith uncommon lustre. When everything else is still, we hearthe roar of the rapids coming steadily on the night breeze,sighing through the old and yet modern palace-temples of theparvenu Ptolemies, and of Cleopatra-a new race of conquerorsand pleasure- hunters, who in vain copied the magnificent worksof the ancient Pharaohs.Here on a pylon gate, General Dessaix has recorded the factthat in February ( Ventose) in the seventh year of the Republic,General Bonaparte being then in possession of Lower Egypt hepursued to this spot the retreating Memlooks. Egyptian kings,Ethiopian usurpers, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Nectanebo, Cambyses, Ptolemy, Philadelphus, Cleopatra and her Roman lovers,Dessaix, these are all shades now.200DDD



IN PASSING the First Cataract of the Nile we pass an ancientboundary line; we go from the Egypt of old to the Ethiopiaof old; we go from the Egypt proper of to-day, into Nubia.We find a different country, a different river; the people are ofanother race; they have a different language. We have left themild, lazy, gentle fellaheen-a mixed lot, but in general ofArabic blood-and come to Barábra, whose district extendsfrom Philæ to the Second Cataract, a freer, manlier, sturdierpeople altogether. There are two tribes of them, the Kenóosand the Nooba; each has its own language.Phile was always the real boundary line, though the Pharaohspushed their frontier now and again, down towards the Equator,and built temples and set up their images, as at Aboo Simbel, asat Samneh, and raked the south land for slaves and ivory,concubines and gold. But the Ethiopians turned the tablesnow and again, and conquered Egypt, and reigned in thepalaces of the Pharaohs, taking that title even, and making theirnames dreaded as far as Judea and Assyria.The Ethiopians were cousins indeed of the old Egyptians, andof the Canaanites, for they were descendants of Cush, as theEgyptians were of Mizriam, and the Canaanites were of Canaan;three of the sons of Ham. The Cush*tes, or Ethiops, althoughso much withdrawn from the theater of history, have done theirshare of fighting-the main business of man hitherto. Besidesquarrels with their own brethren, they had often the attentions254NEGROLAND. 255--- of the two chief descendants of Shem, the Jews and the Arabs;and after Mohammed's coming, the Arabs descended intoNubia and forced the inhabitants into their religion at the pointof the sword. Even the sons of Japhet must have their crackat these children of the " Sun-burned . " It was a Romanprefect who, to avenge an attack on Syene by a warlike woman,penetrated as far south as El Berkel (of the present day) , andoverthrew Candace the Queen of the Ethiopians in Napata, hercapital; the large city, also called Meroë, of which Herodotusheard such wonders.Beyond Ethiopia lies the vast, black cloud of Negroland.These negroes, with the crisp, woolly hair, did not descendfrom anybody, according to the last reports; neither from Shem,Ham nor Japhet. They have no part in the royal house ofNoah. They are left out in the heat. They are the puzzle ofethnologists, the mystery of mankind. They are the real aristocracy of the world, their origin being lost in the twilight oftime; no one else can trace his descent so far back and come tonothing. M. Lenormant says the black races have no traditionof the Deluge. They appear to have been passed over altogether, then. Where were they hidden? When we first knowCentral Africa they are there. Where did they come from?The great effort of ethnologists is to get them dry- shod roundthe Deluge, since derivation from Noah is denied them . History has no information how they came into Africa. It seemsto me that, in history, whenever we hear of the occupation of anew land, there is found in it a primitive race, to be driven outor subdued. The country of the primitive negro is the only onethat has never invited the occupation of a more powerful race.But the negro blood, by means of slavery, has been extensivelydistributed throughout the Eastern world.These reflections did not occur to us the morning we leftPhilæ. It was too early. In fact, the sun was just gilding"Pharaoh's bed, " as the beautiful little Ptolemaic temple iscalled, when we spread sail and, in the shadow of the brokencrags and savage rocks, began to glide out of the jaws of thiswild pass. At early morning everything has the air of adven-256 CONVERSION MADE EASY.ture. It was as if we were discoverers, about to come into anew African kingdom at each turn in the swift stream .One must see, he cannot imagine, the havoc and destructionhereabout, the grotesque and gigantic fragments of rock, theislands of rock, the precipices of rock, made by the torrentwhen it broke through here. One of these islands is Biggeh—all rocks, not enough soft spot on it to set a hen. The rocksare piled up into the blue sky; from their summit we get thebest view of Phila-the jewel set in this rim of stone.Above Phile we pass the tomb of a holy man, high on thehill, and underneath it, clinging to the slope, the oldest mosquein Nubia, the Mosque of Belal, falling now into ruin, but theminaret shows in color no sign of great age. How should it inthis climate, where you might leave a pair of white gloves uponthe rocks for a year, and expect to find them unsoiled ."How old do you suppose that mosque is Abd- el - Atti? ""I tink about twelve hundred years old. Him been built bythe Friends of our prophet when they come up here to make thepeople believe. "I like this euphuism. "But, " we ask, " suppose they didn'tbelieve, what then? ""When thim believe, all right; when thim not believe, doaway wid ' em. ""But they might believe something else, if not what Mohammed believed. ""Well, what our Prophet say? Mohammed, he say, find him.anybody believe in God, not to touch him; find him anybodybelieve in the Christ, not to touch him; find him anybodybelieve in Moses, not to touch him; find him believe in theprophets, not to touch him; find him believe in bit wood, piecestone, do way wid him. Not so? Men worship somethingwood, stone, I can't tell-I tink dis is nothing. "Abd- el-Atti always says the " Friends " of Mohammed, neverfollowers or disciples. It is a pleasant word, and reminds us ofour native land. Mohammed had the good sense that ourpoliticians have. When he wanted anything, a city taken, anew strip of territory added, a " third term," or any trifle, he' put himself in the hands of his friends. "66A LAND OF NEGATIVE BLESSINGS. 257The Friends were successful in this region. While theremote Abyssinians retained Christianity, the Nubians all became Moslems, and so remain to this day."You think, then, Abd-el-Atti that the Nubians believed? ""Thim ' bliged. But I tink these fellows, all of ' em, Musselmens as far as the throat; it don't go lower down. "The story is that this mosque was built by one of Mohammed'scaptains after the great battle here with the Infidels--theNubians. Those who fell in the fight, it is also only tradition,were buried in the cemetery near Assouan, and they aremartyrs: to this day the Moslems who pass that way take offtheir slippers and shoes.After the battle, as the corpses of the slain lay in indistinguishable heaps, it was impossible to tell who were martyrsand who were unbelievers. Mohammed therefore ordered thatthey should bury as Moslems all those who had large feet, andpleasant faces, with the mark of prayer on the forehead. Thebodies ofthe others were burned as infidels.As we sweep along, the mountains are still high on either side,and the strips of verdure are very slight. On the east bank,great patches of yellow sand, yellow as gold, and yet reddishin some lights, catch the sun.I think it is the finest morning I ever saw, for clearness anddryness. The thermometer indicates only 60°, and yet it is nottoo cool. The air is like wine. The sky is absolutely cloudless,and of wonderful clarity. Here is a perfectly pure and sweetatmosphere. After a little, the wind freshens, and it is somewhatcold on deck, but the sky is like sapphire; let the wind blow fora month, it will raise no cloud, nor any film of it.Everything is wanting in Nubia that would contribute to thediscomfort of a winter residence:-It never rains;-There is never any dew above Philæ;There are no flies;There are no fleas;There are no bugs, nor any insects whatever. The attempt tointroduce fleas into Nubia by means of dahabeëhs has been afailure. 17258 COOL AIR FROM THE desert.In fact there is very little animal life; scarcely any birds areseen; fowls of all sorts are rare. There are gazelles, however,and desert hares, and chameleons. Our chameleons nearlystarved for want of flies. There are big crocodiles and largelizards.In a bend a few miles above Philæ is a whirlpool called Shaymtel Wah, from which is supposed to be a channel communicatingunder the mountain to the Great Oasis one hundred milesdistant. The popular belief in these subterranean communications is very common thoroughout the East. The holy well,Zem-Zem, at Mecca has a connection with a spring at El Gebelin Syria. I suppose that is perfectly well known. Abd-el -Attihas tasted the waters of both; and they are exactly alike;besides, did he not know of a pilgrim who lost his drinking-cupin Zem-Zem and recovered it in El GebelThis Nubia is, to be sure, but a river with a colored border,but I should like to make it seem real to you and not a merecountry of the imagination. People find room to live here; lifegoes on after a fashion, and every mile there are evidences of amighty civilization and a great power which left its record ingigantic works. There was a time, before the barriers brokeaway at Silsilis, when this land was inundated by the annualrise; the Nile may have perpetually expanded above here into alake, as Herodotus reports.We sail between low ridges of rocky hills, with narrow banks ofgreen and a few palms, but occasionally there is a village ofsquare mud-houses. At Gertassee, boldly standing out on arocky platform, are some beautiful columns, the remains of atemple built in the Roman time. The wind is strong andrather colder with the turn of noon; the nearer we come to thetropics the colder it becomes. The explanation is that we getnothing but desert winds; and the desert is cool at this season;that is, it breeds at night cool air, although one does not complainof its frigidity who walks over it at midday.After passing Tafa, a pretty- looking village in the palms,which boasts ruins both pagan and Christian, we come to rapidsand scenery almost as wild and lovely as that at Philæ. TheTHE NUBIAN COSTUME. 259river narrows, there are granite rocks and black boulders in thestream; we sail for a couple of miles in swift and deep water,between high cliffs, and by lofty rocky islands-not withoutleafa*ge and some cultivation, and through a series of rapids, notdifficult but lively. And so we go cheerily on, through savagenature and gaunt ruins of forgotten history; past Kalábshe,where are remains of the largest temple in Nubia; past Bayt elWellee-"the house of the saint " —where Rameses II. hewed abeautiful temple out of the rock; past Gerf Hossáyn, whereRameses II. hewed a still larger temple out of the rock andcovered it with his achievements, pictures in which he appearstwelve feet high, and slaying small enemies as a husbandman. threshes wheat with a flail. I should like to see an ancientstone wall in Egypt, where this Barnum of antiquity wasn'tadvertising himself.We leave him flailing the unfortunate; at eight in the eveningwe are still going on, first by the light of the crescent moon, andthen by starlight, which is like a pale moonlight, so many andlustrous are the stars; and last, about eleven o'clock we goaground, and stop a little below Dakkeh, or seventy- one milesfrom Phile, that being our modest run for the day.Dakkeh, by daylight, reveals itself as a small mud- villageattached to a large temple. You would not expect to find atemple here, but its great pylon looms over the town and it isworth at least a visit. To see such a structure in America wewould travel a thousand miles; the traveler on the Nile debateswhether he will go ashore.The bank is lined with the natives who have something to sell,eggs, milk, butter in little greasy " pats, " and a sheep. Themen are, as to features and complexion, rather Arabic thanNubian. The women have the high cheek-bones and broadfaces of our Indian squaws, whom they resemble in a generalway. The little girls who wear the Nubian costume (a beltwith fringe) and strings of beads, are not so bad; some ofthemwell formed. The morning is cool and the women all wearsome outer garment, so that the Nubian costume is not seen inits simplicity, except as it is worn by children. I doubt if it is260 "TURNING THE TABLES. "at any season. So far as we have observed the Nubian womenthey are as modest in their dress as their Egyptian sisters.Perhaps ugliness and modesty are sisters in their country. Allthe women and girls have their hair braided in a sort of plait infront, and heavily soaked with grease, so that it looks as if theyhad on a wig or a frontlet of leather; it hangs in small, hard,greasy curls, like leathern thongs, down each side. The hairappears never to be undone-only freshly greased every morning. Nose-rings and earrings abound.This handsome temple was began by Ergamenes, an Ethiopianking ruling at Meroë, at the time of the second Ptolemy, duringthe Greek period; and it was added to both by Ptolemies andCæsars. This Nubia would seem to have been in possession ofEthiopians and Egyptians turn and turn about, and, both havingthe same religion, the temples prospered.Ergamenes has gained a reputation by a change he made inhis religion, as it was practiced in Meroë. When the priests.thought a king had reigned long enough it was their custom tosend him notice that the gods had ordered him to die; and theking, who would rather die than commit an impiety, used to die.But Ergamenes tried another method, which he found workedjust as well; he assembled all the priests, and slew them-a verysensible thing on his part.You would expect such a man to build a good temple. Thesculptures are very well executed, whether they are of his time,or owe their inspiration to Berenice and Cleopatra; they showgreater freedom and variety than those of most temples; thefigures of lion, monkeys, cows, and other animals are excellent;and there is a picture of a man playing on a musical instrument,a frame with strings stretched over it, played like a harp but notharp shaped-the like of which is seen nowhere else. Thetemple has the appearance of a fortification as well as a placeof worship. The towers of the propylon are ascended by interiorflights of stairs, and have, one above the other, four good- sizedchambers. The stairways and the rooms are lighted by slitsin the wall about an inch in diameter on the outside; but cutwith a slant from the interior through some five feet of solidTHE GREAT DESERT. 261stone. These windows are exactly like those in European towers,and one might easily imagine himself in a Middle Age fortification . The illusion is heightened by the remains of Christianpaintings on the walls, fresh in color, and in style very like thoseofthe earliest Christian art in Italian churches. In the templewe are attended by a Nubian with a long and threatening spear,such as the people like to carry here; the owner does not carefor blood, however; he only wants a little backsheesh.Beyond Dakkeh the country opens finely; the mountains.fall back, and we look a long distance over the desert on eachside, the banks having only a few rods of green. Far off inthe desert on either hand and in front, are sharp pyramidalmountains, in ranges, in groups, the resemblance to pyramidsbeing very striking. The atmosphere as to purity is extraordinary. Simply to inspire it is a delight for which one maywell travel thousands of miles.We pass small patches of the castor- oil plant, and of areddish-stemmed bush, bearing the Indian bendigo, Arabicbahima, the fruit a sort of bean in appearance and about aspalatable. The castor- oil is much used by the women as ahair-dressing, but they are not fastidious; they use somethingelse if oil is wanting. The demand for butter for thispurpose raised the price of it enormously this morning at Dakkeh.In the afternoon, waiting for wind, we walk ashore and outupon the naked desert-the desert which is broken only byan occasional oasis, from the Atlantic to the Red Sea; it hasa basis of limestone, strewn with sand like gold-dust, anda detritus of stone as if it had been scorched by fire andworn by water. There is a great pleasure in strolling overthis pure waste blown by the free air. We visit a Nubianvillage, and buy some spurious scarabæi off the necks of theladies of the town-alas, for rural simplicity! But thesewomen are not only sharp, they respect themselves sufficientlyto dress modestly and even draw their shawls over their faces.The children take the world as they find it, as to clothes.The night here, there being no moisture in the air is as262 SIN, GREASE, AND TAXES.brilliant as the day; I have never seen the moon and stars soclear elsewhere. These are the evenings that invite to longpipes and long stories. Abd-el- Atti opens his budget fromtime to time, as we sit on deck and while the time withanecdotes and marvels out of old Arab chronicles, spicedwith his own ready wit and singular English. Most of themare too long for these pages; but here is an anecdote which,whether true or not illustrates the character of old MohammedAli:-" Mohammed Ali sent one of his captains, name of WaleeKasheef, to Derr, capital of Nubia (you see it by and by, veryfashionable place, like I see ' em in Hydee Park, what youcall Rotten Row) . Walee when he come there, see thewomen, their hair all twisted up and stuck together with greaseand castor- oil, and their bodies covered with it. He calledthe sheykhs together and made them present of soap, andtold them to make the women clean the hair and washthemselves, and make themselves fit for prayer. It was inaccordin' to the Moslem religion so to do."The Nubians they not like this part of our religion, theynot like it at all. They send the sheykhs down to haveconversation with Mohammed Ali, who been stop at Esneh.They complain of what Walee done. Mohammed send forWalee, and say," What this you been done in Nubia?'" Nothing, your highness, ' cept trying to make the Nubiansconform to the religion.'" Well," says old Mohammed, ' I not send you up there asa priest; I send you up to get a little money. Don't youtrouble the Nubians. We don't care if they go to Gennéh orGehennem, if you get the money. ""So the Nubians were left in sin and grease, and taxedaccordingly. And at this day the taxes are even heavier.Every date- palm and every sakiya is taxed. A sakiya sometimes pays three pounds a year, when there is not a piece offertile land for it to water three rods square.



IT IS a sparkling morning at Wady Saboóa; we have thedesert and some of its high, scarred, and sandy pyramidalpeaks close to us, but as is usual where a wady, or valley,comes to the river, there is more cultivated land. We seevery little of the temple of Rameses II. in this “ Valley of theLions," nor of the sphinxes in front of it. The desert sandhas blown over it and over it in drifts like snow, so that wewalk over the buried sanctuary, greatly to our delight. It isa pleasure to find one adytum into which we cannot go andsee this Rameses pretending to make offerings, but really, asusual, offering to show himself.At the village under the ledges, many of the houses are ofstone, and the sheykh has a pretentious stone enclosure withlittle in it, all to himself. Shadoofs are active along the bank,and considerable crops of wheat, beans, and corn are wellforward. We stop to talk with a bright-looking Arab, whoemploys men to work his shadoofs, and lives here in anenclosure of cornstalks, with a cornstalk kennel in one corner,where he and his family sleep. There is nothing pretentiousabout this establishment, but the owner is evidently a man ofwealth, and, indeed, he has the bearing of a shrewd Yankee.He owns a camel, two donkeys, several calves and two cows,and two young Nubian girls for wives, black as coal andgreased, but rather pleasant-faced. He has also two goodguns-appears to have duplicates of nearly everything. Outof the cornstalk shanty his wives bring some handsome rugs for us to sit on.263264 PRIMITIVE ATTIRE.The Arab accompanies us on our walk, as a sort of host ofthe country, and we are soon joined by others, black fellows;some of them carry the long flint-lock musket, for which theyseem to have no powder; and all wear a knife in a sheath onthe left arm; but they are as peaceable friendly folk as youwould care to meet, and simple-minded. I show the Arabmy field-glass, an object new to his experience. He looksthrough it, as I direct, and is an astonished man, makingmotions with his hand, to indicate how the distant objects aredrawn towards him, laughing with a soft and childlikedelight, and then lowering the glass, looks at it, and cries,"Bismillah! Bismillah," an ejacul*tion of wonder, andalso intended to divert any misfortune from coming uponhim on account of his indulgence in this pleasure.He soon gets the use of the glass and looks beyond theriver and all about, as if he were discovering objects unknownto him before. The others all take a turn at it, and areequally astonished and delighted. But when I cause them tolook through the large end at a dog near by, and they seehim remove far off in the desert, their astonishme t is complete. My comrade's watch interested them nearly as much,although they knew its use; they could never get enough ofits ticking and of looking at its works, and they concludedthat the owner of it must be a Pasha.The men at work dress in the slight manner of the ancientEgyptians; the women, however, wear garments coveringthem, and not seldom hide the face at our approach. But thematerial of their dress is not always of the best quality; anold piece of sacking makes a very good garment for a Nubianwoman. Most of them wear some trinkets, beads or bits ofsilver or carnelian round the neck, and heavy bracelets ofhorn. The boys have not yet come into their clothing, butthe girls wear the leathern belt and fringe adorned with shells.The people have little, but they are not poor. It may bethat this cornstalk house of our friend is only his winterresidence, while his shadoof is most active, and that he hasanother establishment in town. There are too many sakiyasTHE SNAKE- CHARMER. 265in operation for this region to be anything but prosperous,apparently. They are going all night as we sail along, andthe screaming is weird enough in the stillness . I shouldthink that a prisoner was being tortured every eighth of amile on the bank. We are never out of hearing of theirshrieks. But the cry is not exactly that of pain; it is rathera song than a cry, with an impish squeak in it, and a monot- onous iteration of one idea, like all the songs here. Italways repeats one sentence, which sounds like Iskander loghehn-e-e- e- n-whatever it is in Arabic; and there is of course astory about it. The king, Alexander, had concealed under hishair two horns. Unable to keep the secret to himself he toldit in confidence to the sakiya; the sakiya couldn't hold thenews, but shrieked out, " Alexander has two horns," and theother sakiyas got it; and the scandal went the length oftheNile, and never can be hushed.The Arabs personify everything, and are as full of superstitions as the Scotch; peoples who have nothing in commonexcept it may be that the extreme predestinationism of theone approaches the fatalism of the other-begetting in both asuperstitious habit, which a similar cause produced in theGreeks. From talking of the sakiya we wander into storiesillustrative of the credulity and superstition ofthe Egyptians.Charms and incantations are relied on for expelling diseasesand warding off dangers. The snake-charmer is a person stillin considerable request in towns and cities. Here in Nubiathere is no need of his offices, for there are no snakes; butin Lower Egypt, where snakes are common, the mud-wallsand dirt-floors of the houses permit them to come in andbe at home with the family. Even in Cairo, where thehouses are of brick, snakes are much feared, and the housethat is reputed to have snakes in it cannot be rented. It willstand vacant like an old mansion occupied by a ghost ina Christian country. The snake- charmers take advantage ofthis popular fear.Once upon a time when Abd-el-Atti was absent from thecity, a snake-charmer came to his house, and told his sister266 A HOUSE full of SNAKES.that he divined that there were snakes in the house. " Mysister," the story goes on, " never see any snake to house, butshe woman, and much ' fraid of snakes, and believe what himsay. She told the charmer to call out the snakes. He set towork his mumble, his conjor-(' exorcism ') yes, dat's it,exorcism ' em, and bring out a snake. She paid him onedollar."Thenthe conjuror say, ' This the wife; the husband stillin the house and make great trouble if he not got out. ' "" He want him one pound for get the husband out, and mysister give it.66 my sister very sick, very sickShe tell me the story that theshe had a man call them out,When I come home I findindeed, and I say what is it?house was full of snakes andbut the fright make her long time ill."I said, you have done very well to get the snakes out, whatcould we do with a house full of the nasty things? And Isaid, I must get them out of another house I have-house Ilet him since to machinery."Machinery? For what kind of machinery! Steam - engines? "'No, misheenary-have a school in it.""Oh, missionary. ""Yes, let ' em have it for bout three hundred francs less than Iget before. I think the school good for Cairo. I send for thesnake-charmer, and I say I have ' nother house I think hassnakes in it, and I ask him to divine and see. He comes backand says, my house is full of snakes, but he can charm them out.I say, good, I will pay you well. We appointed early nextmorning for the operation, and I agreed to meet the charmer atmy house. I take with me big black fellow I have in the house,strong like a bull. When we get there I find the charmer therein front of the house and ready to begin. But I propose thatwe go in the house, it might make disturbance to the neighborhood to call so many serpents out into the street. We go in,and I say, tell me the room of the most snakes. The charmersay, and as soon as we go in there, I make him sign the blackA NOVEL WRIT OF EJECTMENT. 267fellow and he throw the charmer on the ground , and we tie himwith a rope. We find in his bosom thirteen snakes and scorpions.I tell him I had no idea there were so many snakes in my house.Then I had the fellow before the Kadi; he had to pay back allthe money he got from my sister and went to prison. But, " addedAbd-el-Atti, " the doctor did not pay back the money for mysister's illness. ”Alexandria was the scene of another snake story. The ownerof a house there had for tenants an Italian and his wife, whoselease had expired, but who would not vacate the premises. Hetherefore hired a snake-charmer to go to the house one day whenthe family were out, and leave snakes in two of the rooms. Whenthe lady returned and found a snake in one room she fled intoanother, but there another serpent raised his head and hissed ather. She was dreadfully frightened, and sent for the charmer,and had the snakes called out but she declared that she wouldn'toccupy such a house another minute. And the family movedout that day of their own accord. A novel writ of ejectment.In the morning we touched bottom as to cold weather, thethermometer at sunrise going down to 47°; it did, indeed, as weheard afterwards, go below 40° at Wady Halfa the next morning;but the days were sure to be warm enough. The morning isperfectly calm, and the depth of the blueness of the sky, especially as seen over the yellow desert sand and the blackenedsurface of the sandstone hills, is extraordinary. An artist'srepresentation of this color would be certain to be called anexaggeration. The skies of Lower Egypt are absolutely pale incomparison.Since we have been in the tropics, the quality of the sky hasbeen the same day and night-sometimes a turquoise blue, suchas on rare days we get in America through a break in the clouds,but exquisitely delicate for all its depth. We passed the Tropicof Cancer in the night, somewhere about Dendoór, and did notsee it. I did not know, till afterwards, that there had been anytrouble about it. But it seems that it has been moved fromAssouan, where Strabo put it and some modern atlases stillplace it, southward, to a point just below the ruins of the temple.268 OUR FRIENDS OF THE CORNSTALK HOUSE.of Dendoór, where Osiris and Isis were worshipped. Probablythe temple, which is thought to be of the time of Augustus andconsequently is little respected by any antiquarian, was not builtwith any reference to the Tropic of Cancer; but the point ofthe turning of the sun might well have been marked by a temple to the mysterious deity who personified the sun and whowas slain and rose again.Our walk on shore to-day reminded us of a rugged path inSwitzerland. Before we come to Kalkeh ( which is of no account,except that it is in the great bend below Korosko) the hills ofsandstone draw close to the east bank, in some places in sheerprecipices, in others leaving a strip of sloping sand. Along thecliff is a narrow donkey-path, which travel for thousands of yearshas worn deep; and we ascend along it high above the river.Wherever at the foot of the precipices there was a chance togrow a handful of beans or a hill of corn, we found the groundoccupied. In one of these lonely recesses we made the acquaintance of an Arab family.Walking rapidly, I saw something in the path, and held myfoot just in time to avoid stepping upon a naked brown baby,rather black than brown, as a baby might be who spent his timeoutdoors in the sun without any umbrella."By Jorge! a nice plumpee little chile, " cried Abd-el-Atti, whois fond of children, and picks up and shoulders the boy, whoshows no signs of fear and likes the ride.We come soon upon his parents. The man was sitting on arock smoking a pipe. The woman, dry and withered, waspicking some green leaves and blossoms, of which she wouldpresently make a sort ofpurée, that appears to be a great partofthe food of these people. They had three children. Theirfarm was a small piece ofthe sloping bank, and was in appearanceexactly like a section of sandy railroad embankment grown toweeds. They had a few beans and some squash or pumpkinvines, and there were remains of a few hills of doora which hadbeen harvested.While the dragoman talked with the family, I climbed up totheir dwelling, in a ravine in the rocks. The house was of theTHE PROPHET AND THE WALEE OF FEZ. 269simplest architecture—a circular stone enclosure, so loosely laidup that you could anywhere put your hand through it. Overa segment of this was laid some cornstalks, and under these thepiece of matting was spread for the bed. That matting was theonly furniture of the house. All their clothes the family had onthem , and those were none too many-they didn't hold out tothe boy. And the mercury goes down to 47 ° these mornings!Before the opening of this shelter, was a place for a fire againstthe rocks, and a saucepan, water-jar, and some broken bottlesThe only attraction about this is its simplicity. Probably this isthe country-place of the proprietor, where he retires for " shangeofair " during the season when his crops are maturing, and thenmoves into town under the palm-trees during the heat of summer.Talking about Mohammed (we are still walking by the shore)I found that Abd- el-Atti had never heard the legend of themiraculous suspension of the Prophet's coffin between heavenand earth; no Moslem ever believed any such thing; no Moslemever heard of it."Then there isn't any tradition or notion of that sort amongMoslems? ""No, sir. Who said it? ""Oh, it's often alluded to in English literature-by Mr.Carlyle for one, I think.""What for him say that? I tink he must put something inhis book to make it sell. How could it? Every year sinceMohammed died, pilgrims been make to his grave, where heburied in the ground; shawl every year carried to cover it;always buried in that place. No Moslem tink that. ”"Once a good man, a Walee of Fez, a friend of the Prophet,was visited by a vision and by the spirit of the Prophet, andhe was gecited (excited) to go to Mecca and sce him. Whenhe was come near in the way, a messenger from the Prophetcame to the Walee, and told him not to come any nearer; thathe should die and be buried in the spot where he then was.And it was so.His tomb you see it there now before you come to Mecca."When Mohammed was asked the reason why he would270 A MYSTERIOUS VISITOR.not permit the Walee to come to his tomb to see him, he saidthat the Walee was a great friend of his, and if he came to histomb he should feel bound to rise and see him; and he oughtnot to do that, for the time of the world was not yet fullycome; if he rose from his tomb, it would be finish, the worldwould be at an end. Therefore he was 'bliged to refuse hisfriend."Nobody doubt he buried in the ground. But Ali, different. Ali, the son-in- law of Mohammed (married his daughterFat'meh, his sons Hasan and Hoseyn,) died in Medineh.When he died, he ordered that he should be put in a coffin,and said that in the morning there would come from thedesert a man with a dromedary; that his coffin should bebound upon the back of the dromedary, and let go. In themorning, as was foretold, the man appeared, leading a dromedary; his head was veiled except his eyes. The coffin wasbound upon the back of the beast, and the three went awayinto the desert; and no man ever saw either of them more, orknows, to this day, where Ali is buried. Whether it was aman or an angel with the dromedary, God knows! "Getting round the great bend at Korosko and Amada is themost vexatious and difficult part of the Nile navigation. Thedistance is only about eight miles, but the river takes a freakhere to run south- south-east, and as the wind here is usuallynorth-north-west, the boat has both wind and current againstit. But this is not all; it is impossible to track on the westbank on account of the shallows and sandbars, and the channelon the east side is beset with dangerous rocks. We thoughtourselves fortunate in making these eight miles in two days, andone of them was a very exciting day. The danger was instranding the dahabeëh on the rocks, and being compelled toleave her; and our big boat was handled with great difficulty.Traders and travelers going to the Upper Nile leave the riverat Korosko. Here begins the direct desert route-as utterlywaste, barren and fatiguing as any in Africa-to Aboo Hamed,Sennaar and Kartoom. The town lies behind a fringe of palmson the river, and backed by high and savage desert mountains.FIXED! 271As we pass we see on the high bank piles of merchandise andthe white tents of the caravans.This is still the region of slavery. Most of the Arabs, poor asthey appear, own one or two slaves, got from Sennaar orDarfoor-though called generally Nubians. We came across aSennaar girl to day of perhaps ten years of age, hoeing alone inthe field. The poor creature, whose ideas were as scant as herclothing, had only a sort of animal intelligence; she could speaka little Arabic, however (much more than we could-speakingofintelligence! ) and said she did not dare come with us for fearher mistress would beat her. The slave trade is, however,greatly curtailed by the expeditions of the Khedive. The brightAbyssinian boy, Ahmed, whom we have on board, was broughtfrom his home across the Red Sea by way of of the ways by which a few slaves still sift into Cairo.summer.This isWe are working along in sight of Korosko all day. Justabove it, on some rocks in the channel, lies a handsomedahabeëh belonging to a party of English gentlemen, whichwent on a week ago; touched upon concealed rocks in theevening as the crew were tracking, was swung further on by thecurrent, and now lies high and almost dry, the Nile fallingdaily, in a position where she must wait for the rise nextThe boat is entirely uninjured and no doubt mighthave been got off the first day, if there had only been mechanical skill in the crew. The governor at Derr sent down one hundredand fifty men, who hauled and heaved at it two or three days,with no effect. Half a dozen Yankees, with a couple of jackscrews, and probably with only logs for rollers, would have set itafloat. The disaster is exceedingly annoying to the gentlemen,who have, however, procured a smaller boat from Wady Halfain which to continue their voyage. We are several hours ingetting past these two boats, and accomplish it not without atangling of rigging, scraping off of paint, smashing of deck rails,and the expenditure of a whole dictionary of Arabic. OurArabs never see but one thing at a time. If they are gettingthe bow free, the stay-ropes and stern must take care ofthemselves. If, by simple heedlessness, we are letting the yard272 PICTURE OF A DANDY PILOT.of another boat rip into our rigging, God wills it. While we arein this confusion and excitement, the dahabeëh of GeneralMcClellan and half a dozen in company, sweep down past us,going with wind and current.It is a bright and delicious Sunday morning that we are stilltracking above Korosko. To- day is the day the pilgrims toMecca spend upon the mountain of Arafat. Tomorrow theysacrifice; our crew will celebrate it by killing a sheep and eatingit-and it is difficult to see where the sacrifice comes in forthem . The Moslems along this shore lost their reckoning,mistook the day, and sacrificed yesterday.This is not the only thing, however, that keeps this place inour memory. We saw here a pretty woman. Considering herdress, hair, the manner in which she had been brought up, andher looks, a tolerably pretty woman; a raving beauty in comparison with her comrades. She has a slight cast, in oneeye, that only shows for a moment occasionally and thendisappears. If these feeble tributary lines ever meet that eye, Ibeg her to know that, by reason of her slight visual defect, sheis like a revolving light, all the more brilliant when she flashesout.We lost time this morning, were whirled about in eddies anddrifted on sandbars, owing to contradictory opinions among ournavigators, none of whom seem to have the least sconce. Theygenerally agree, however, not to do anything that the pilotorders. Our pilot from Philæ to Wady Halfa and back, is aBarábra, and one of the reïses of the Cataract, a fellow very tall,and thin as a hoop-pole, with a withered face and a highforehead. His garments a white cotton nightgown withoutsleeves, a brown over- gown with flowing sleeves, both reachingto the ankles, and a white turban. He is barefooted andbarelegged, and, in his many excursions into the river to exploresandbars, I have noticed a hole where he has stuck his kneethrough his nightgown. His stature and his whole bearinghave in them something, I know not what, of the theatrical airof the Orient.He had a quarrel to day with the crew, for the reasonFIGURATIVE ACTS OF GRIEF. 273mentioned above, in which he was no doubt quite right, aquarrel conducted as usual with an extraordinary expense ofwords and vituperation . In his inflamed remarks, he at lengththrew out doubts about the mother of one of the crew, andprobably got something back that enraged him still more.While the wrangle went on, the crew had gathered about theirmess-dish on the forward deck, squatting in a circle round it,and dipping out great mouthfuls of the purée with the right hand . The pilot paced the upper deck, and his voice, which islike that of many waters, was lifted up in louder and louderlamentations, as the other party grew more quiet and wereOccupied with their dinner-throwing him a loose taunt nowand then, followed by a chorus of laughter. He strode back.and forth, swinging his arms, and declaring that he would leavethe boat, that he would not stay where he was so treated, thathe would cast himself into the river."When you do, you'd better leave your clothes behind, ”suggested Abd-el-Atti.Upon this cruel sarcasm he was unable to contain himselflonger.He strode up and down, raised high his voice, and torehis hair and rent his garments-the supreme act of Orientaldesperation. I had often read of this performance, both in theScriptures and in other Oriental writings, but I had never seenit before. The manner in which he tore his hair and rent hisgarments was as follows, to wit:-He almost entirely unrolledhis turban, doing it with an air of perfect recklessness; and thenhe carefully wound it again round his smoothly-shaven head.That stood for tearing his hair. He then swung his long armsaloft, lifted up his garment above his head, and with desperateforce, appeared to be about to rend it in twain. But he neverstarted a seam nor broke a thread. The nightgown wouldn'thave stood much nonsense.In the midst of his most passionate outburst, he went forwardand filled his pipe, and then returned to his tearing and rendingand his lamentations. The picture of a strong man in grief isalways touching.The country along here is very pretty, the curved shore for 18274 NUBIAN 'BEAUTY.'miles being a continual palm-grove, and having a considerablestrip of soil which the sakiya irrigation makes very productive.Beyond this rise mountains of rocks in ledges; and when weclimb them we see only a waste desert of rock strewn with looseshale and, further inland, black hills of sandstone, which thicklycover the country all the way to the Red Sea.Under the ledges are the habitations of the people, squareenclosures of stone and clay of considerable size, with interiorcourts and kennels. One of them-the only sign of luxury wehave seen in Nubia-had a porch in front of it covered withpalm boughs. The men are well-made and rather prepossessingin appearance, and some of them well-dressed-they had nodoubt made the voyage to Cairo; the women are hideous without exception. It is no pleasure to speak thus continually ofwoman; and I am sometimes tempted to say that I see here thebrown and bewitching maids, with the eyes of the gazelle andthe form of the houri, which gladden the sight of more fortunatevoyagers through this idle land; but when I think ofthe heavyamount of misrepresentation that would be necessary to give anyone of these creatures a reputation for good looks abroad, Ishrink from the undertaking.They are decently covered with black cotton mantles, whichthey make a show of drawing over the face; but they are perhapswild rather than modest, and have a sort of animal shyness.Their heads are sights to behold. The hair is all braided instrings, long at the sides and cut off in front, after the styleadopted now-a-days for children (and women) in civilizedcountries, and copied from the young princes, prisoners in theTower. Each round strand of hair has a dab of clay on the endofit. The whole is drenched with castor-oil, and when the sunshines on it, it is as pleasant to one sense as to another. Theyhave flattish noses, high cheek- bones, and always splendid teeth;and they all, young girls as well as old women, hold tobacco intheir under lip and squirt out the juice with placid and scientificaccuracy. They wear two orthree strings of trumpery beads andnecklaces, bracelets of horn and of greasy leather, and occasionally a finger-ring or two. Nose-rings they wear if they haveENSURING A FORTUNATE LIFE. 275them; if not, they keep the bore open for one by inserting akernel of doora.In going back to the boat we met a party of twenty or thirtyof these attractive creatures, who were returning from burying aboy of the village. They came striding over the sand, chattering in shrill and savage tones. Grief was not so weighty on,them that they forgot to demand backsheesh, and (unrestrainedby the men in the town) their clamor for it was like the cawingof crows; and their noise, when they received little from us,was worse. The tender and loving woman, stricken in grief bydeath, is, in these regions, when denied backsheesh, an enraged,squawking bird of prey. They left us with scorn in their eyesand abuse on their tongues.At a place below Korosko we saw a singular custom, inwhich the women appeared to better advantage. A whole troopof women, thirty or forty of them, accompanied by children,came in a rambling procession down to the Nile, and brought ababy just forty days old. We thought at first that they wereabout to dip the infant into Father Nile, as an introduction tothe fountain of all the blessings of Egypt. Instead of this,however, they sat down on the bank, took kohl and daubed it inthe little fellow's eyes. They perform this ceremony by theNile when the boy is forty days old, and they do it that he mayhave a fortunate life. Kohl seems to enlarge the pupil, anddoubtless it is intended to open the boy's eyes early.At one of the little settlements to-day the men were veryhospitable, and brought us out plates (straw) of sweet drieddates. Those that we did not eat, the sailor with us stuffedinto his pocket; our sailors never let a chance of provenderslip, and would, so far as capacity " to live on the country " goes,make good soldiers. The Nubian dates are called the best inEgypt. They are longer than the dates of the Delta, but hardand quite dry. They take the place of coffee here in thecomplimentary hospitality. Whenever a native invites you totake " coffee," and you accept, he will bring you a plate of datesand probably a plate of popped doora, like our popped corn.Coffee seems not to be in use here; even the governors entertainus with dates and popped corn.276 A BARBARIC PICTURE.We are working up the river slowly enough to make theacquaintance of every man, woman, and child on the banks;and a precious lot of acquaintances we shall have. I have nodesire to force them upon the public, but it is only by thesedetails that I can hope to give you any idea of the Nubian life.We stop at night. The moon-and-starlight is somethingsuperb. From the high bank under which we are moored, thebroad river, the desert opposite, and the mountains, appear in aremote African calm-a calm only broken by the shriek ofthe sakiyas which pierce the air above and below us.In the sakiya near us, covered with netting to keep off thenorth wind, is a little boy, patient and black, seated on thepole of the wheel, urging the lean cattle round and round.The little chap is alone and at some distance from the village,and this must be for him lonesome work. The moonlight,through the chinks of the palm- leaf, touches tenderly hispathetic figure, when we look in at the opening, and his smallvoice utters the one word of Egypt-" backsheesh. "Attracted by a light-a rare thing in a habitation here-wewalk over to the village. Atthe end of the high enclosure of adwelling there is a blaze of fire, which is fed by doora-stalks,and about it squat five women, chattering; the fire lights uptheir black faces and hair shining with the castor-oil. Fourof them are young; and one is old and skinny, and with onlya piece of sacking for all clothing. Their husbands are awayin Cairo, or up the river with a trading dahabeëh (so they tellour guide); and these poor creatures are left here (it may befor years it may be for ever) to dig their own living out of theground. It is quite the fashion husbands have in this country;but the women are attached to their homes; they have nodesire to go elsewhere. And I have no doubt that in Cairothey would pine for the free and simple life of Nubia.These women all want backsheesh, and no doubt willquarrel over the division of the few piastres they have fromus. Being such women as I have described, and usingtobacco as has been sufficiently described also, crouchingabout these embers, this group composes as barbaric a picture"PIGVILLE” IN NUBIA. 277as one can anywhere see. I need not have gone so far to seesuch a miserable group; I could have found one as wretchedin Pigville (every city has its Pigville)? Yes, but this ischaracteristic of the country. These people are as good asanybody here. (We have been careful to associate only withthe first families.) These women have necklaces and bracelets,and rings in their ears, just like any women, and rings in thehair, twisted in with the clay and castor-oil. And in Pigvilleone would not have the range of savage rocks, which towerabove these huts, whence the jackals, wolves, and gazellescome down to the river, nor the row of palms, nor the Nile,and the sands beyond, yellow in the moonlight.油菜



OURS is the crew to witch the world with noble seamanship. It is like a first-class orchestra, in which allthe performers are artists. Ours are all captains. Thereïs is merely an elder brother. The pilot is not heeded atall. With so many intentions on board, it is an hourlymiracle that we get on at all.We are approaching the capital of Nubia, trying to getround a sharp bend in the river, with wind adverse, currentrapid, sandbars on all sides. Most of the crew are in thewater ahead, trying to haul us round the point of a sand- spiton which the stream foams, and then swirls in an eddy below.I can see now the Pilot, the long Pilot, who has gone in tofeel about for deep water, in his white nightgown, his shavenhead, denuded of its turban, shining in the sun, standing intwo feet of water, throwing his arms wildly above his head,screaming entreaties, warnings, commands, imprecations uponthe sailors in the river and the commanders on the boat. Ican see the crew, waist deep, slacking the rope which theyhave out ahead, stopping to discuss the situation. I can seethe sedate reïs on the bow arguing with the raving pilot, thesteersman, with his eternal smile, calmly regarding the peril,and the boat swinging helplessly about and going upon theshoals. " Stupids, " mutters Abd-el-Atti, who is telling hisbeads rapidly, as he always does in exciting situations.When at length we pass the point, we catch the breeze sosuddenly and go away with it, that there is no time for the278MIDNIGHT BEAUTY. 279men to get on board, and they are obliged to scamper backover the sand-spits to the shore and make a race of it to meetus at Derr. We can see them running in file, dodging alongunder the palms by the shore, stopping to grab occasionally asquash or a handful of beans for the pot.The capital of Nubia is the New York of this region, not solarge, nor so well laid out, nor so handsomely built, but thecentre of fashion and the residence of the ton. The governorlives in a whitewashed house, and there is a Sycamore hereeight hundred years old, which is I suppose older than theStuyvesant Pear in New York. The houses are not perchedup in the air like tenement buildings for the poor, but aristocratically keep to the ground in one-story rooms; and theyare beautifully moulded of a tough clay. The whole townlies under a palm-grove. The elegance of the capital, however, is not in its buildings, but in its women; the ladies whocometo the the river to fill their jars are arrayed in the heightof the mode. Their hair is twisted and clayed and castoroiled, but, besides this and other garments, they wear an outerrobe of black which sweeps the ground for a yard behind, andgives them the grace and dignity that court- robes alwaysgive. You will scarcely see longer skirts on Broadway or ina Paris salon. I have, myself, no doubt that the Broadwayfashions came from Derr, all except the chignons. Here theladies wear their own hair.Making no landing in , this town so dangerous to onesusceptible to the charms of fashion, we went on, and stoppedat night near Ibreem, a lofty precipice, or range of precipices,the southern hill crowned with ruins and fortifications whichwere last occupied by the Memlooks, half a century and moreago. The night blazed with beauty; the broad river was asmooth mirror, in which the mountains and the scintillatinghosts of heaven were reflected. And we saw a phenomenonwhich I have never seen elsewhere. Not only were the rockyledges reproduced in a perfect definition of outline, but evenin the varieties of shade, in black and reddish-brown color.Perhaps it needs the affidavits of all the party to the more280 THE SOUTHERN CROSS.surprising fact, that we were all on deck next morning beforefive o'clock, to see the SOUTHERN CROSS. The moon had set,and these famous stars of the southern sky flashed color andbrilliancy like enormous diamonds. "Other worlds thanours "? I should think so! All these myriads of burningorbs only to illuminate our dahabeëh and a handful of Nubians,who are asleep! The Southern Cross lay just above thehorizon and not far from other stars of the first quality.There are I believe only three stars of the first magnitude andone of the second, in this constellation, and they form , in fact,not a cross but an irregular quadrilateral. It needs a vividimagination and the aid of small stars to get even a semblanceof a cross out of it. But if you add to it, as we did, for thefoot of the cross, a brilliant in a neighboring constellation,you have a noble cross.This constellation is not so fine as Orion, and for all wesaw, we would not exchange our northern sky for thesouthern; but this morning we had a rare combination. TheMorning Star was blazing in the east; and the Great Bear(who has been nightly sinking lower and lower, until he dipsbelow the horizon) having climbed high up above the Pole inthe night, filled the northern sky with light. In this lucidatmosphere the whole heavens from north to south seemed tobe crowded with stars of the first size.During the morning we walked on the west bank througha castor-oil plantation; many of the plants were good- sizedtrees, with boles two and a half to three inches through, andapparently twenty-five feet high. They were growing in theyellow sand which had been irrigated by sakiyas, but wasthen dry, and some of the plants were wilting. We pickedup the ripe seeds and broke off some of the fat branches; andthere was not water enough in the Nile to wash away theodor afterwards.Walking back over the great sand- plain towards the rangeof desert mountains, we came to an artificial mound-anash-heap, in fact-fifty or sixty feet high. At its base is ahabitation of several compartments, formed by sticking theDOING JUSTICE ON A THIEF. 281stalks of castor-oil plants into the ground, with a roof ofthesame. Here we found several women with very neat dabs ofclay on the ends of their hair-twists, and a profusion ofnecklaces, rings in the hair and other ornaments-amongthem, scraps of gold. The women were hospitable, rathermodest than shy, and set before us plates of dried dates; andno one said " backsheesh. " A better class of people thanthose below, and more purely Nubian.It would perhaps pay to dig open this mound. Near it arethree small oases, watered by sakiyas, which draw from wellsthat are not more than twenty feet deep: The water is clear ascrystal but not cool. These are ancient Egyptian wells, whichhave been re-opened within a few years; and the ash- mound isno doubt the débris of a village and an old Egyptian settlement.At night we are a dozen miles from Aboo Simbel (Ipsamboul),the wind-which usually in the winter blows with great and steadyforce from the north in this part of the river-having taken afancy to let us see the country.A morning walk takes us over a rocky desert; the broken shaleis distributed as evenly over the sand as if the whole had oncebeen under water, and the shale were a dried mud, cracked inthe sun. The miserable dwellings of the natives are under theledges back of the strip of arable land. The women are shy andwild as hawks, but in the mode; they wear a profusion of glassbeads and trail their robes in the dust.It is near this village that we have an opportunity to executejustice. As the crew were tracking, and lifting the rope over asakiya, the hindmost sailor saw a sheath-knife on the bank,and thrust it into his pocket as he walked on. In five minutesthe owner of the knife discovered the robbery, and came to theboat to complain. The sailor denied having the knife, but uponthreat of a flogging gave it up. The incident, however, arousedthe town, men and women came forth discussing it in a highkey, and some foolish fellows threatened to stone our boat. Abdel-Atti replied that he would stop and give them a chance to doit. Thereupon they apologized; and, as there was no wind,the dragoman asked leave to stop and do justice.282 ABD-EL-ATTI'S COURT.A court was organized on shore. Add- el-Atti sat down on alump of earth, grasping a marline-spike, the crew squatted in acircle in the high beans, and the culprit was arraigned. Theowner testified to his knife, a woman swore she saw the sailortake it, Abd-el-Atti pronounced sentence, and rose to executeit with his stake. The thief was thrown upon the ground andheld by two sailors. Abd-el- Atti, resolute and solemn as anexecutioner, raised the club and brought it down with a tremendous whack-not however upon the back of the victim, he hadat that instant squirmed out of the way. This conduct greatlyenraged the minister of justice, who thereupon came at his objectwith fury, and would no doubt have hit him if the criminal hadnot got up and ran, screaming, with the sailors and Abd-elAtti after him. The ground was rough, the legs of Abd-el- Attiare not long and his wind is short. The fellow was caught, andescaped again and again, but the punishment was a mere scrimmage; whenever Abd-el-Atti, in the confusion, could get achance to strike he did so, but generally hit the ground, sometimes the fellow's gown and perhaps once or twice the man inside,but never to his injury. He roared all the while, that he was nothief, and seemed a good deal more hurt by the charge that hewas, than by the stick. The beating was, in short, only a farcelaughable from beginning to end, and not a bad sample ofEgyptian justice. And it satisfied everybody.Having put ourselves thus on friendly relations with thisvillage, one of the inhabitants brought down to the boat a letterforthe dragoman to interpret. It had been received two weeksbefore from Alexandria, but no one had been able to read ituntil our boat stopped here. Fortunately we had the abovelittle difficulty here. The contents of the letter gave the villageemployment for a month. It brought news of the death of twoinhabitants of the place, who were living as servants in Alexandria, one ofthem a man eighty years old and his son aged sixty,I never saw grief spread so fast and so suddenly as it did withthe uncorking of this vial of bad news. Instantly a lamentation and wild mourning began in all the settlement. It wasn'tten minutes before the village was buried in grief. And, in anNUBIANS MOURNING FOR THE DEAD. 283incredible short space of time, the news had spread up and downthe river, and the grief- stricken began to arrive from other places.Where they came from, I have no idea; it did not seem that wehad passed so many women in a week as we saw now. Theypoured in from all along the shore, long strings of them, stridingover the sand, throwing up their garments, casting dust on theirheads (and all of it stuck), howling, flocking like wild geese to arendezvous, and filling the air with their clang. They werearriving for an hour or two.The men took no part in this active demonstration. Theywere seated gravely before the honse in which the bereavedrelatives gathered; and there I found Abd-el-Atti, seated also,and holding forth upon the inevitable coming of death, andsaying that there was nothing to be regretted in this case, for thetime of these men had come. If it hadn't come, they wouldn'thave died. Not so?The women crowded into the enclosure and began mourningin a vigorous manner. The chief ones grouping themselvesin an irregular ring, cried aloud: "O that he had died here! "" O that I had seen his face when he died; " repeating theselamentations over and over again, throwing up the arms,and then the legs in a kind of barbaric dance as they lamented,and uttering long and shrill ululations at the end of eachsentence.To-day they kill a calf and feast, and tomorrow the lamentations and the African dance will go on, and continue for a week.These people are all feeling. It is a heathen and not a Moslemcustom however; and whether it is of negro origin or of ancientEgyptian I do not know, but probably the latter. The ancientEgyptian women are depicted in the tombs mourning in thismanner; and no doubt the Jews also so bewailed, when they"lifted up their voices " and cast dust on their heads, as we sawthese Nubians do. It is an unselfish pleasure to an Easternwoman to " lift up the voice." The heavy part of the mourningcomes upon the women, who appear to enjoy it. It is their chiefoccupation, after the carrying of water and the grinding of doora,and probably was so with the old race; these people certainly keep234 our JournEY'S END.the ancient customs; they dress the hair, for one thing, verymuch as the Egyptians did, even to the castor-oil.At this village, as in others in Nubia, the old women are thecorn-grinders. These wasted skeletons sit on the ground beforea stone with a hollow in it; in this they bruise the doora with asmaller stone; the flour is then moistened and rubbed to a paste.The girls and younger women, a great part of the time, are idlingabout in their finery. But, then, they have the babies and thewater to bring; and it must be owned that some of them work inthe field-grubbing grass and stuff for "greens " and for fuel,more than the men. The men do the heavy work of irrigation.But we cannot stay to mourn with those who mourn aweek in this style; and in the evening, when a strong breezesprings up, we spread our sail and go, in the " daylightof the moon," flying up the river, by black and weird shores;and before midnight pass lonesome Aboo Simbel, whosecolossi sit in the moonlight with the impassive mien theyhave held for so many ages.In the morning, with an easy wind, we are on the last stageof our journey. We are almost at the limit of dahabeëhnavigation. The country is less interesting than it was below.The river is very broad, and , we look far over the desert oneach side. The strip of cultivated soil is narrow and now andagain disappears alogether. To the east are seen, since wepassed Aboo Simbel, the pyramid hills, some with truncatedtops, scattered without plan over the desert. It requires nostretch of fancy to think that these mathematically built hillsare pyramids erected by races anterior to Menes, and that allthis waste that they dot is a necropolis of that forgottenpeople.The sailors celebrate the finishing of the journey by aceremony of state and dignity. The chief actor is Farrag, thewit of the crew. Suddenly he appears as the Governor ofWady Halfa, with horns on his head, face painted, a longbeard, hair sprinkled with flour, and dressed in shaggy sheepskin. He has come on board to collect his taxes. He openshis court, with the sailors about him, holding a long marline-A COMICAL CELEBRATION. 285spike which he pretends to smoke as a chibook. His imitationof the town dignitaries along the river is very comical, andhis remarks are greeted with roars of laughter. One of thecrew acts as his bailiff and summons all the officers andservants of the boat before him, who are thrown down uponthe deck and bastinadoed, and released on payment of backsheesh. The travelers also have to go before the court andpay a fine for passing through the Governor's country. TheGovernor is treated with great deference till the end of thefarce, when one of his attendants sets fire to his beard, andanother puts him out with a bucket of water.The end of our journey is very much like the end ofeverything else—there is very little in it. When we followanything to its utmost we are certain to be disappointedsimply because it is the nature of things to taper down to apoint. I suspect it must always be so with the traveler, andthat the farther he penetrates into any semi- savage continent,the meaner and ruder will he find the conditions of life.When we come to the end, ought we not to expect the end?We have come a thousand miles not surely to see WadyHalfa but to see the thousand miles. And yet Wady Halfa,figuring as it does on the map, the gate of the great SecondCataract, the head of navigation, the destination of so manyeager travelers, a point of arrival and departure of caravans,might be a little less insignificant than it is . There is thethick growth of palm-trees under which the town lies, andbeyond it, several miles, on the opposite, west bank, is thecliff of Aboosir, which looks down upon the cataract; but forthis noble landmark, this dominating rock, the traveler couldnot feel that he had arrived anywhere, and would be soweakened by the shock of arriving nowhere at the end of solong a journey (as a man is by striking a blow in the air) thathe would scarcely have strength to turn back.At the time of our arrival, however, Wady Halfa has someextra life. An expedition of the government is about to startfor Darfoor. When we moor at the east bank, we see on thewest bank the white tents of a military encampment set in286 · THE MARCH OF CIVILIZATION.right lines on the yellow sand; near them the governmentstorehouse and telegraph-office, and in front a mountedhowitzer and a Gatlin gun. No contrast could be stronger.Here is Wady Halfeh, in the doze of an African town, acollection of mud-huts under the trees, listless, apathetic,sitting at the door of a vast region, without either purpose orambition. There, yonder, is a piece of life out of our restlessage. There are the tents, the guns, the instruments, thesoldiers and servants of a new order of things for Africa.We hear the trumpet call to drill. The flag which is plantedin the sand in front of the commander's tent is to be borne tothe equator.But this is not a military expedition. It is a corps ofscientific observation, simply. Since the Sultan of Darfooris slain and the Khedive's troops have occupied his capital,and formally attached that empire to Egypt, it is necessary toknow something of its extent, resources, and people, concerning all of which we have only the uncertain reports oftraders. It is thought by some that the annexation ofDarfoor adds five millions to the population of the Khedive'sgrowing empire. In order that he may know what he hasconquered, he has sent out exploring expeditions, of which this is one. It is under command of Purdy Bey assisted byLieutenant-Colonel Mason, two young American officers ofthe Khedive, who fought on opposite sides in our civil war.They are provided with instruments for making all sorts ofobservations, and are to report upon the people and thephysical character and capacity of the country. They expectto be absent three years, and after surveying Darfoor, willstrike southward still, and perhaps contribute something tothe solution of the Nile problem. For escort they have ahundred soldiers only, but a large train of camels andattendants. In its purpose it is an expedition that anycivilized ruler might be honored for setting on foot. It is abrave overture of civilization to barbarism. The nations aredaily drawing nearer together. As we sit in the telegraphoffice here, messages are flashed from Cairo to Kartoom.



THERE are two ways of going to see the Second Cataract and the cliff of Aboosir, which is about six milesabove Wady Halfa; one is by small boat, the other bydromedary over the desert. We chose the latter, and theAmerican officers gave us a mount and their company also.Their camp presented a lively scene when we crossed over toit in the morning. They had by requisition pressed into theirservice three or four hundred camels, and were trying toselect out of the lot half a dozen fit to ride. The camelswere, in fact, mostly burden camels and not trained to theriding-saddle; besides, half of them were poor, miserablerucks of bones, half- starved to death; for the Arabs, whosebusiness it had been to feed them, had stolen the governmentsupplies. An expedition which started south two weeks agolost more than a hundred camels, from starvation, before itreached Semneh, thirty-five miles up the river. They hadbecome so weak, that they wilted and died on the first hardmarch. For his size and knotty appearance, the camel is themost disappointing of beasts. He is a sheep as to endurance,As to temper, he is vindictive.Authorities differ in regard to the distinction between thecamel and the dromedary. Some say that there are nocamels in Egypt, that they are all dromedaries, having onehump; and that the true camel is the Bactrian, which hastwo humps. It is customary here, however, to call thosecamels which are beasts of burden, and those dromedarieswhich are trained to ride; the distinction being that betweenthe cart-horse and the saddle-horse.287288 PLEASURES OF CAMEL-RIDING.The camel- drivers, who are as wild Arabs as you will meetanywhere, select a promising beast and drag him to the tent.He is reluctant to come; he rebels against the saddle; heroars all the time it is being secured on him, and when he isforced to kneel, not seldom he breaks away from his keepersand shambles off into the desert. The camel does this- always; and every morning on a march he receives his loadonly after a struggle. The noise of the drivers is little lessthan the roar of the beasts, and with their long hair, shaggybreasts, and bare legs they are not less barbarous in appearance.Mounting the camel is not difficult, but it has some sweetsurprises for the novice. The camel lies upon the ground withall his legs shut up under him like a jackknife. You seatyourself in the broad saddle, and cross your legs in front of thepommel. Before you are ready, something like a private earthquake begins under you. The camel raises his hindquarterssuddenly, and throws you over upon his neck; and, before yourecover from that he straightens up his knees and gives you ajerk over his tail; and, while you are not at all certain what hashappened, he begins to move off with that dislocated walkwhich sets you into a see-saw motion, a weaving backwards andforwards in the capacious saddle. Not having a hinged backfit for this movement, you lash the beast with your koorbásh tomake him change his gait. He is nothing loth to do it, and atonce starts into a high trot which sends you a foot into the airat every step, bobs you from side to side, drives your backboneinto your brain, and makes castanets of your teeth. Capitalexercise. When you have enough of it, you pull up, andhumbly enquire what is the heathen method of riding a dromedary.It is simple enough. Shake the loose halter- rope (he hasneither bridle nor bit) against his neck as you swing the whip,and the animal at once swings into an easy pace; that is, apretty easy pace, like that of a rocking-horse. But everythingdepends upon the camel. I happened to mount one that itwas a pleasure to ride, after I brought him to the proper gait.We sailed along over the smooth sand, with level keel, andPROSPECT FROM THE ROCK ABOOSIR. 289(though the expression is not nautical) on cushioned feet. Butit is hard work for the camel, this constant planting of hisspongy feet in the yielding sand.Our way lay over the waste and rolling desert (the track ofthe southern caravans, ) at some little distance from the river;and I suppose six miles of this travel are as good as a hundred.The sun was blazing hot, the yellow sand glowed in it, and thefar distance of like sand and bristling ledges of black rockshimmered in waves of heat. No tree, no blade of grass, nothingbut blue sky bending over a sterile land. Yet, how sweet wasthe air, how pure the breath of the desert, how charged withelectric life the rays of the sun!The rock Aboosir, the ultima Thule of pleasure- travel on theNile, is a sheer precipice of perhaps two to three hundred feetabove the Nile; but this is high enough to make it one of themost extensive lookouts in Egypt. More desert can be seenhere than from almost anywhere else. The Second Cataractis spread out beneath us. It is less a " fall " even than theFirst. The river is from a half mile to a mile in breadth and fora distance of some five miles is strewn with trap-rock, bouldersand shattered fragments, through which the Nile swiftly forcesitself in a hundred channels. There are no falls of any noticeable height. Here, on the flat rock, where we eat our luncheon,a cool breeze blows from the north. Here on this eagle'sperch, commanding a horizon of desert and river for a hundredmiles, fond visitors have carved their immortal names, followingan instinct of ambition that is wellnigh universal, in the beliefno doubt that the name will have for us who come after all thesignificance it has in the eyes of him who carved it . But Icannot recall a single name I read there; I am sorry that Icannot, for it seems a pitiful and cruel thing to leave them therein their remote obscurity.From this rock we look with longing to the southward, intovast Africa, over a land we may not further travel, which weshall probably never see again; on the far horizon the bluepeaks of Dongola are visible, and beyond these we know are theruins of Meroë, that ancient city, the capital of that Ethiopian19290 SIGNS OF WEALTH.Queen, Candace, whose dark face is lighted up by a momentarygleam from the Scriptures. On the beach at Wady Halfa arehalf a dozen trading-vessels, loaded with African merchandisefor Cairo, and in the early morning there is a great hubbubamong the merchants and the caravan owners. A suddendispute arises among a large group around the ferry-boat, andthere ensues that excited war, or movement, which alwaysthreatens to come to violence in the East but never does;Niagaras of talk are poured out; the ebb and flow of the particolored crowd, and the violent and not ungraceful gesturesmake a singular picture.Bales of merchandise are piled on shore, cases of brandy andcottons from England, to keep the natives of Soudan warminside and out; Greek merchants splendid in silk attire, arelounging amidtheir goods, slowly bargaining for their transportation. Groups of camels are kneeling on the sand with theirBedaween drivers. These latter are of the Bisharee Arabs, andfree sons of the desert. They wear no turban, and their onlygarment is a long strip of brown cotton thrown over the shoulderso as to leave the right arm free, and then wound about thewaist and loins. The black hair is worn long, braided instrands which shine with oil , and put behind the ears. Thissign of effeminacy is contradicted by their fine, athletic figures;by a bold, strong eye, and a straight, resolute nose.Wady Halfa (wady is valley, and halfa is a sort of coarsegrass) has a post-office and a mosque, but no bazaar, nor anycenter of attraction. Its mud-houses are stretched along theshore for a mile and a half, and run back into the valley, underthe lovely palm- grove; but there are no streets and no roadsthrough the deep sand. There is occasionally a sign of wealthin an extensive house, that is, one consisting of several enclosedcourts and apartments within one large mud-wall; and in onewe saw a garden, watered by a sakiya, and two latticed windowsin a second story looking on it, as if some one had a haremhere which was handsome enough to seclude.We called on the Kadi, the judicial officer of this district,whose house is a specimen of the best, and as good as is neededA NUBIAN BELLE. 291in this land of the sun. On one side of an open enclosure is hisharem; in the other is the reception-room where he holds court.This is a mud-hut, with nothing whatever in it except somestraw mats. The Kadi sent for rugs, and we sat on the mudbench outside, while attendants brought us dates, popped-corn,and even coffee; and then they squatted in a row in front of usand stared at us, as we did at them. The ladies went into theharem, and made the acquaintance of the judge's one wife and hisdirty children. Not without cordiality and courtesy of mannerthese people; but how simple are the terms of life here; andwhat a thoroughly African picture this is, the mud-huts, thesand, the palms, the black-skinned groups.The women here are modestly clad, but most of them frightfully ugly and castor-oily; yet we chanced upon two handsomegirls, or rather married women, of fifteen or sixteen . One ofthem had regular features and a very pretty expression, andevidently knew she was a beauty, for she sat apart on the ground,keeping her head covered most of the time, and did not join thewomen who thronged about us to look with wonder at the costume of our ladies and to beg for backsheesh. She was loadedwith necklaces, bracelets of horn and ivory, and had a ring onevery finger. There was in her manner something of scorn andresentment at our intrusion; she no doubt had her circle ofadmirers and was queen in it. Who are these pale creatureswho come to stare at my charms? Have they no dark prettywomen in their own land? And she might well have asked, whatwould she do-a beauty of New York city, let us say—whenshe sat combing her hair on the marble doorsteps of her father'spalace in Madison Square, if a lot of savage, impolite Nubians,should come and stand in a row in front of her and stare?The only shops here are the temporary booths of traders,birds of passage to or from the equatorial region. Many ofthem have pitched their gay tents under the trees, making thescene still more like a fair or an encampment for the night. Insome are displayed European finery and trumpery, manufacturedfor Africa, calico in striking colors, glass beads and cottoncloth; others are coffee-shops, where men are playing at a sort292 CLASSIC BEAUTY—A GREEK BRIDE.of draughts-the checker-board being holes made in the sandand the men pebbles. At the door of a pretty tent stood ayoung and handsome Syrian merchant, who cordially invited usin, and pressed upon us the hospitality of his house. He was onhis way to Darfoor, and might remain there two or three years,trading with the natives. We learned this by the interpretationof his girl-wife, who spoke a little barbarous French. He hadmarried her only recently, and this was their bridal tour, weinferred. Into what risks and perils was this pretty womangoing? She was Greek, from one of the islands, and had thenaïveté and freshness of both youth and ignorance. Her faircomplexion was touched by the sun and ruddy with health.Her blue eyes danced with the pleasure of living. She wore herhair natural, with neither oil nor ornament, but cut short andpushed behind the ears. For dress she had a simple calicogown of pale yellow, cut high in the waist, à la Grecque, theprettiest costume women ever assumed. After our long regimenof the hideous women of the Nile, plastered with dirt, soaked inoil, and hung with tawdry ornaments, it may be imagined howwelcome was this vision of a woman, handsome, natural andclean, with neither the shyness of an animal nor the brazennessof a Ghawazee.Our hospitable entertainers hastened to set before us whatthey had; a bottle of Maraschino was opened, very goodEuropean cigars were produced, and a plate of pistachio nuts,to eat with the cordial. The artless Greek beauty cracked thenuts for us with her shining teeth, laughing all the while; urgingus to eat, and opening her eyes in wonder that we would noteat more, and would not carry away more. It must be confessedthat we had not much conversation, but we made it up inconstant smiling, and ate our pistachios and sipped our cordialin great glee. What indeed could we have done more withwords, or how have passed a happier hour? We perfectlyunderstood each other; we drank each other's healths; we werecivilized beings, met by chance in a barbarous place; we wereglad to meet, and we parted in the highest opinion of eachother, with gay salaams, and not in tears. What fate I wonderINTERVIEWING A CROCODILE. 293had these handsome and adventurous merchants among thesavages of Darfoor and Kordofan?The face ofour black boy, Gohah, was shining with pleasurewhen we walked away, and he said with enthusiasm, pointingto the tent, " Sitt tyeb, quéi-is." Accustomed as he was to theAfrican beauties of Soudan, I do not wonder that Gohahthought this " lady " both " good " and " beautiful. "We have seen Wady Halfa. The expedition to Darfoor ispacking up to begin its desert march in the morning. Ourdahabeëh has been transformed and shorn of a great part of itsbeauty. We are to see no more the great bird-wing sail. Thelong yard has been taken down and is slung above us the wholelength of the deck. The twelve big sweeps are put in place;the boards of the forward deck are taken up, so that the rowerswill have place for their feet as they sit on the beams. They sitfronting the cabin, and rise up and take a step forward at eachstroke, settling slowly back to their seats. On the mast isrigged the short stern-yard and sail, to be rarely spread. Hereafter we are to float, and drift, and whirl, and try going with thecurrent and against the wind.At ten o'clock of a moonlight night, a night of summer heat,we swing off, the rowers splashing their clumsy oars and settingup a shout and chorus in minor, that sound very much like awail, and would be quite appropriate if they were ferrymen ofthe Styx. We float a few miles, and then go aground and go tobed.The next day we have the same unchanging sky, the samegroaning and creaking of the sakiyas, and in addition the irregular splashing of the great sweeps as we slide down the river.Two crocodiles have the carelessness to show themselves on asand-island, one a monstrous beast, whose size is magnified everytime we think how his great back sunk into the water when oursandal was yet beyond rifle-shot. Of course he did not knowthat we carried only a shot-gun and intended only to amuse him,or he would not have been in such haste.The wind is adverse, we gain little either by oars or by thecurrent, and at length take to the shore, where something novel294 JOKING WITH A WIDOW.always rewards us. This time we explore some Roman ruins,with round arches of unburned bricks, and find in them also theunmistakable sign of Roman occupation, the burnt bricks-thosethin slabs, eleven inches long, five wide, and two thick, whichwere a favorite form with them, bricks burnt for eternity, andscattered all over the East wherever the Roman legions went.Beyond these is a village, not a deserted village, but probablythe laziest in the world. Men, and women for the most part too,were lounging about and in the houses, squatting in the dust, inabsolute indolence, except that the women, all of them, weresuckling their babies, and occasionally one of them was spinninga little cotton-thread on a spindle whirled in the hand. Themen are more cleanly than the women, in every respect in bettercondition, some of them bright, fine-looking fellows. One ofthem showed us through his house, which was one of the finestin the place, and he was not a little proud of it. It was a largemud-wall enclosure. Entering by a rude door we came into anopen space, from which opened several doors, irregular breaksin the wall, closed by shackling doors of wood. Stepping overthe sill and stooping, we entered the living-rooms. First, is thekitchen; the roof of this is the sky-you are always liable to findyourself outdoors in these houses-and the fire for cooking isbuilt in one corner. Passing through another hole in the wallwe come to a sleeping-room, where were some jars of dates anddoora, and a mat spread in one corner to lie on. Nothing butan earth-floor, and dust and grime everywhere. A crowd oftittering girls were flitting about, peeping at us from doorways,and diving into them with shrill screams, like frightened rabbits,if we approached.Abd-el-Atti raises a great laugh by twisting a piastre into thefront lock of hair of the ugliest hag there, calling her his wife,and drawing her arm under his to take her to the boat. It is animmense joke. The old lady is a widow and successfully conceals her reluctance. The tying the piece of silver in the hairis a sign of marriage. All the married women wear a piastre orsome scale of silver on the forehead; the widows leave off thisornament from the twist; the young girls show, bythe hair plain,A MODEL VILLAGE. 295except always the clay dabs, that they are in the market. Thesimplicity of these people is noticeable. I saw a woman seatedon the ground, in dust three inches thick, leaning against themud-bank in front of the house, having in her lap a naked baby;on the bank sat another woman, braiding the hair of the first,wetting it with muddy water, and working into it sand, clay, andtufts ofdead hair. What a way to spend Sunday!This is, on the whole, a model village. The people appear tohave nothing, and perhaps they want nothing. They do nothing,and I suppose they would thank no one for coming to increasetheir wants and set them to work. Nature is their friend.I wonder what the staple of conversation of these people is,since the weather offers nothing, being always the same, andalways fine.A day and a night and a day we fight adverse winds, and makeno headway. One day we lie at Farras, a place of no consequence, but having, almost as a matter of course, ruins of the timeof the Romans and the name Rameses II. cut on a rock. In aRoman wall we find a drain-tile exactly like those we use now.In the evening, after moon-rise, we drop down to Aboo Simbel.



HEN daylight came the Colossi of Aboo Simbel (or IpWHEsambool) were looking into our windows; greeting thesunrise as they have done every morning for threethousand five hundred years; and keeping guard still over theapproach to the temple, whose gods are no longer anywhererecognized, whose religion disappeared from the earth twothousand years ago:-vast images, making an eternity of timein their silent waiting.The river here runs through an unmitigated desert. On theeast the sand is brown, on the west the sand is yellow; that isthe only variety. There is no vegetation, there are no habitations, there is no path on the shore, there are no footsteps on thesand, no one comes to break the spell of silence. To find sucha monument of ancient power and art as this temple in such asolitude enhances the visitor's wonder and surprise. ThePyramids, Thebes, and Aboo Simbel are the three wonders ofEgypt. But the great temple of Aboo Simbel is unique. Itsatisfies the mind. It is complete in itself, it is the projectionof one creative impulse of genius. Other temples are growths,they have additions, afterthoughts, we can see in them theworkings of many minds and many periods. This is a completethought, struck out, you would say, at a heat.In order to justify this opinion, I may be permitted a littledetail concerning this temple, which impressed us all as muchas anything in Egypt. There are two temples here, both closeto the shore, both cut in the mountain of rock which here almost296A ROW OF SACRED MONKEYS. 297overhangs the stream . We need not delay to speak of thesmaller one, although it would be wonderful, if it were not forthe presence ofthe larger. Between the two was a rocky gorge.This is now nearly filled up, to the depth of a hundred feet, bythe yellow sand that has drifted and still drifts over from thelevel of the desert hills above.This sand, which drifts exactly like snow, lies in ridges likesnow, and lies loose and sliding under the feet or packs hardlike snow, once covered the façade of the big temple altogether,and now hides a portion of it. The entrance to the temple wasfirst cleared away in 1817 by Belzoni and his party, whose gangof laborers worked eight hours a day for two weeks with thethermometer at 112 ° to 116° Fahenheit in the shade-an almostincredible endurance when you consider what the heat musthave been in the sun beating upon this dazzling wall of sand infront of them.The rock in which the temple is excavated was cut back aconsiderable distance, but in this cutting the great masses wereleft which were to be fashioned into the four figures. The façadethus made, to which these statues are attached, is about onehundred feet high. The statues are seated on thrones with nointervening screens, and, when first seen, have the appearanceof images in front of and detached from the rock of which theyform a part. The statues are all tolerable perfect, except one,the head of which is broken and lies in masses at its feet; and atthe time of our visit the sand covered the two northernmost tothe knees. The door of entrance, over which is a hawk- headedfigure of Re, the titular divinity, is twenty feet high. Above thecolossi, and as a frieze over the curve of the cornice, is a row ofmonkeys, (there were twenty-one originally, but some are splitaway) , like a company of negro minstrels, sitting and holding uptheir hands in the most comical manner. Perhaps the Egyptians,like the mediæval cathedral builders, had a liking for grotesqueeñects in architecture; but they may have intended nothingcomic here, for the monkey had sacred functions; he was anemblem of Thoth, the scribe of the under-world, who recordedthe judgments of Osiris.298 THE LARGEST COLOSSI IN THE WORLD.These colossi are the largest in the world *; they are at leastfifteen feet higher than the wonders of Thebes, but it is not theirsize principally that makes their attraction. As works of artthey are worthy of study. Seated, with hands on knees, in thateternal, traditional rigidity of Egyptian sculpture, neverthelessthe grandeur of the head and the noble beauty of the face takethem out of the category of mechanical works. The figuresrepresent Rameses II. and the features are of the type whichhas come down to us as the perfection of Egyptian beauty.I climbed up into the lap of one of the statues; it is there onlythat you can get an adequate idea of the size of the body.What a roomy lap! Nearly ten feet between the wrists thatrest upon the legs! I sat comfortably in the navel of the statue,as in a niche, and mused on the passing of the nations. Tothese massive figures the years go by like the stream . Withimpassive, serious features, unchanged in expression in thousandsof years, they sit listening always to the flowing of the unendingNile, that fills all the air and takes away from that awful silencewhich would else be painfully felt in this solitude.The interior of this temple is in keeping with its introduction.You enter a grand hall supported by eight massive Osiridecolumns, about twenty-two feet high as we estimated them.They are figures of Rameses become Osiris-to be absorbed intoOsiris is the end of all the transmigrations of the blessed soul.The expression of the faces of such of these statues as are uninjured, is that of immortal youth-a beauty that has in it thepromise of immortality. The sides of this hall are covered withfine sculptures, mainly devoted to the exploits of Rameses II.;and here is found again, cut in the stone the long Poem of thepoet Pentaour, celebrating the single-handed exploit of Ramesesagainst the Khitas on the river Orontes. It relates that the king,whom his troops dared not follow, charged with his chariot alone

  • The following are some of the measurements of one of these giants:-

height offigure sixty-six feet; pedestal on which it sits, ten; leg from knee to heel, twenty; great toe, one and a half feet thick; ear, three feet, five incheslong; fore-finger, three feet; from inner side of elbow-joint to end of middle finger, fifteen feet.A LITTLE PHARAONIC BOMBAST. 299into the ranks of the enemy and rode through them again andagain, and slew them by hundreds. Rameses at that time wasonly twenty-three; it was his first great campaign. Pursuing theenemy, he overtook them in advance of his troops, and, rejectingthe councils of his officers, began the fight at once. "The footmen and the horsem*n then, " says the poet ( the translator is Rougé), " recoiled before the enemy who were masters ofKadesh, on the left bank of the Orontes.... Then his majesty,in the pride of his strength, rising up like the god Mauth, put onhis fighting dress. Completely armed, he looked like Baal in thehour of his might. Urging on his chariot, he pushed into thearmy of the vile Khitas; he was alone, no one was with him.He was surrounded by 2,500 chariots, and the swiftest of thewarriors of the vile Khitas, and of the numerous nations whoaccompanied them, threw themselves in his way.... Each chariotbore three men, and the king had with him neither princes norgenerals, nor his captains of archers nor of chariots."Then Rameses calls upon Amun; he reminds him of theobelisk he has raised to him, the bulls he has slain for him:-"Thee, I invoke, O my Father! I am in the midst of a hostof strangers, and no man is with me. My archers andhorsem*n have abandoned me; when I cried to them, none ofthem has heard, when I called for help. But I prefer Amun tothousands of millions of archers, to millions of horsem*n, tomillions ofyoung heroes all assembled together. The designsof men are nothing, Amun overrules them. ”Needless to say the prayer was heard, the king rode slashingthrough the ranks of opposing chariots, slaying, and puttingto rout the host. Whatever basis of fact the poem may havehad in an incident of battle or in the result of one engagement, it was like one of Napoleon's bulletins from Egypt.The Khitas were not subdued and, not many years after, theydrove the Egyptians out of their land and from nearly allPalestine, forcing them, out of all their conquests, into thevalley of the Nile itself. During the long reign of thisRameses, the power of Egypt steadily declined, while luxuryincreased and the nation was exhausted in building the300 THE MYSTerious teMPLE AT IPSAMBOOL.enormous monuments which the king projected. The closeof his pretentious reign has been aptly compared to that ofLouis XIV. a time of decadence; in both cases the greatfabric was ripe for disaster.-But Rameses liked the poem of Pentaour. It is about aslong as a book of the Iliad, but the stone-cutters of his reignmust have known it by heart. He kept them carving it andillustrating it all his life, on every wall he built where therewas room for the story. He never, it would seem, could getenough of it. He killed those vile Khitas a hundred times;he pursued them over all the stone walls in his kingdom.The story is told here at Ipsambool; it is carved in theRameseum; the poem is graved on Luxor and Karnak.Out of this great hall open eight other chambers, all moreor less sculptured, some of them covered with well- drawnfigures on which the color is still vivid. Two of these roomsare long and very narrow, with a bench running round thewalls, the front of which is cut out so as to imitate seats withshort pillars. In one are square niches, a foot deep, cut inthe wall. The sculptures in one are unfinished, the hieroglyphics and figures drawn in black but not cut-some eventhaving called off the artists and left their work incompleteWe seem to be present at the execution of these designs, andso fresh are the colors of those finished, that it seems it musthave been only yesterday that the workman laid down thebrush. (A small chamber in the rock outside the temple,which was only opened in 1874, is wonderful in the vividnessof its colors; we see there better than anywhere else thecolors of vestments. )These chambers are not the least mysterious portion of thistemple. They are in absolute darkness, and have no chanceof ventilation. By what light was this elaborate carvingexecuted? If people ever assembled in them, and sat onthese benches, when lights were burning, how could theybreathe? If they were not used, why should they have beenso decorated? They would serve very well for the awfulmysteries of the Odd Fellows. Perhaps they were used bythe Free Masons in Solomon's time.FETING THE ANCIENT DEITIES. 301Beyond the great hall is a transverse hall (having twosmall chambers off from it ) with four square pillars, and fromthis a corridor leads to the adytum. Here, behind an altar ofstone, sit four marred gods, facing the outer door, twohundred feet from it. They sit in a twilight that is onlybrightened by rays that find their way in at the distant door;but at morning they can see, from the depth of their mountain cavern, the rising sun.We climbed, up the yielding sand-drifts, to the top of theprecipice in which the temple is excavated, and walked backto a higher ridge. The view from these is perhaps the bestdesert view on the Nile, more extensive and varied than thatofAboosir. It is a wide sweep of desolation. Up and downthe river we see vast plains of sand and groups of black hills;to the west and north the Libyan desert extends with nolimit to a horizon fringed with sharp peaks, like aiguilles ofthe Alps, that have an exact resemblance to a forest.At night, we give the ancient deities a sort of Fourth ofJuly, and illuminate the temple with colored lights. A bluelight burns upon the altar in the adytum before the four gods,who may seem in their penetration to receive again theworship to which they were accustomed three thousand yearsago. A green flame in the great hall brings out mysteriouslythe features of the gigantic Osiride, and revives the midnightglow of the ancient ceremonies. In the glare of torches andcolored lights on the outside, the colossi loom in theirgigantic proportions and cast grotesque shadows.Imagine this temple as it appeared to a stranger initiatedinto the mysteries of the religion of the Pharaohs-a cultus inwhich the mathematical secrets of the Pyramid and theSphinx, art and architecture, were wrapped in the sameconcealment with the problem of the destiny of the soul;when the colors on these processions of gods and heroes,upon these wars and pilgrimages sculptured in large on thewalls, were all brilliant; when these chambers were gorgeously furnished, when the heavy doors that then hung inevery passage, separating the different halls and apartments,302 OUR LAST VIEW OF THE GIANTS.only swung open to admit the neophyte to new and deepermysteries, to halls blazing with light, where he stood in thepresence ofthese appalling figures, and of hosts of priests andacolytes.The temple of Aboo Simbel was built early in the reign ofRameses II. , when art, under the impulse of his vigorouspredecessors was in its flower, and before the visible decadencewhich befel it later under a royal patronage and " protection,"and in the demand for a wholesale production, which alwaysreduces any art to mechanical conditions. It seemed to usabout the finest single conception in Egypt. It must havebeen a genius of rare order and daring who evoked in thissolid mountain a work of such grandeur and harmony ofproportion, and then executed it without a mistake. The firstblow on the exterior, that began to reveal the Colossi, wasstruck with the same certainty and precision as that whichbrought into being the gods who are seated before the altarin the depth of the mountain. A bolder idea was never moresuccessfully wrought out.Our last view of this wonder was by moonlight and bysunrise. We arose and went forth over the sand-bank at fiveo'clock. Venus blazed as never before. The Southern Crosswas paling in the moonlight. The moon, in its last half,hung over the south-west corner of the temple rock, andthrew a heavy shadow across a portion of the sitting figures.In this dimness of the half-light their proportions weresupernatural. Details were lost.These might be giants of pre-historic times, or the oldfabled gods of antediluvian eras, outlined largely and majestically, groping their way out of the hills.Above them was the illimitable, purplish blue of the sky.The Moon, one of the goddesses of the temple, withdrew moreand more before the coming of Re, the sun- god to whom thetemple is dedicated, until she cast no shadow on the façade.The temple, even the interior, caught the first glow of thereddening east. The light came, as it always comes at dawn,in visible waves, and these passed over the features of theTHE SILENT GUÀRDIANS OF THE nile. 303Colossi, wave after wave, slowly brightening them into life.In the interior the first flush was better than the light ofmany torches, and the Osiride figures were revealed in theirhiding-places. At the spring equinox the sun strikes squarelyin, two hundred feet, upon the faces of the sitting figures inthe adytum. That is their annual salute! Now it only sentit* light to them; but it made rosy the Osiride faces on oneside of the great hall.The morning was chilly, and we sat on a sand- drift,wrapped up against the cutting wind, watching the marvellousrevelation. The dawn seemed to ripple down the giganticfaces of the figures outside, and to touch their stony calmwith something like a smile of gladness; it almost gave themmotion, and we would hardly have felt surprised to see themarise and stretch their weary limbs, cramped by ages ofinaction, and sing and shout at the coming of the sun-god.But they moved not, the strengthening light only revealedtheir stony impassiveness; and when the sun, rapidly clearingthe eastern hills of the desert, gilded first the row ofgrinningmonkeys, and then the light crept slowly down over faces andforms to the very feet, the old heathen helplessness stoodconfessed.And when the sun swung free in the sky, we silently drewaway and left the temple and the guardians alone and unmoved.We called the reïs and the crew; the boat was turned to thecurrent, the great sweeps dipped into the water, and wecontinued our voyage down the eternal river, which still singsand flows in this lonely desert place, where sit the mostgigantic figures man ever made.2000DD



WE HAVE been learning the language. The languageconsists merely of tyeb. With tyeb in its various accentsand inflections, you can carry on an extended conversation. I have heard two Arabs talking for a half hour, in whichone of them used no word for reply or response except tyeb"good. "Tyeb is used for assent, agreement, approval, admiration, bothinterrogatively and affectionately. It does the duty of theYankee " all right " and the vulgarism " that's so " combined; ithas as many meanings as the Italian va bene, or the German So!or the English girl's yes! yes? ye- e-s, ye-e-as? yes (short),'n ye-e-es in doubt and really a negative-ex.:- " How lovelyBlanche looks to-night! " "'n ye-e-es." You may hear twountutored Americans talking, and one of them, through a longinterchange of views will utter nothing except, " that's so, '"that's so? that's so," that's so." I think two Arabs meeting 99 66could come to a perfect understanding with,"Tyeb?"??66 Tyeb."66 Tyeb! " (both together).Tyeb?" (showing something).""Tyeb" (emphatically, in admiration).66 Tyeb " (in approval of the other's admiration).66 Tyeb Keteér" (" good, much ") ." Tyeb Keteér?"66 Tyeb."66 Tycb." (together, in ratification of all that has been said).304MODELS OF BREVITY. 305I say tyeb in my satisfaction with you; you say tyeb in pleasureat my satisfaction; I say tyeb in my pleasure at your pleasure.The servant says tyeb when you give him an order; you say tyebupon his comprehending it. The Arabic is the richest of languages. I believe there are three hundred names for earth, ahundred for lion, and so on. But the vocabulary of the commonpeople is exceedingly limited. Our sailors talk all day with theaid ofa very few words.But we have got beyond tyeb. We can say etwa (" yes ")—ornăm, when we wish to be elegant-and la (" no "). The universal negative in Nubia, however, is simpler than this-it is acluck of the tongue in the left check and a slight upward jerk ofthe head. This cluck and jerk makes " no, " from which thereis no appeal. If you ask a Nubian the price of anythingbe-kám dee?—and he should answer khámsa (" five ") , and youshould offer theláta ( “ three ” ) , and he should kch and jerk uphis head, you might know the trade was hopeless; because thekch expresses indifference as well as a negative. The best thingyou could do would be to say bookra (“ to-morrow " ), and goaway-meaning in fact to put off the purchase forever, as theNubian very well knows when he politely adds, tyeb.But there are two other words necessary to be mastered beforethe traveller can say he knows Arabic. To the constant call for"backsheesh" and the obstructing rabble of beggars andchildren, you must be able to say mafeesh (" nothing "), andim'shee (" get away, " " clear out, " " scat. ") It is my experiencethat this im'shee is the most necessary word in Egypt.We do nothing all day but drift, or try to drift, against thenorth wind, not making a mile an hour, constantly turning about,floating from one side ofthe river to the other. It is impossibleto row, for the steersman cannot keep the boat's bow to thecurrent.There is something exceedingly tedious, even to a lazy andresigned man, in this perpetual drifting hither and thither. Tofloat, however slowly, straight down the current, would be quiteanother thing. To go sideways, to go stern first, to waltz aroundso that you never can tell which bank of the river you are 20806 CUTTING UP A crocodile.looking at, or which wayyou are going, or what the points ofthe compass are, is confusing and unpleasant. It is the oneserious annoyance of a dahabeëh voyage. If it is calm, we goon delightfully with oars and current; if there is a southerlybreeze we travel rapidly, and in the most charming way in theworld. But our high-cabined boats are helpless monsters in thiswind, which continually blows; we are worse than becalmed, weare badgeredHowever, we might be in a worse winter country, and one lessentertaining. We have just drifted in sight of a dahabeëh, withthe English flag, tied up to the bank. On the shore is a picturesque crowd; an awning is stretched over high poles; men arebusy at something under it-on the rock near sits a group ofwhite people under umbrellas. What can it be? Are theyrepairing a broken yard? Are they holding a court over somethief? Are they performing some mystic ceremony? We takethe sandal and go to investigate.An English gentleman has shot two crocodiles, and his peopleare skinning them, stuffing the skin, and scraping the flesh fromthe bones, preparing the skeletons for a museum. Horriblecreatures they are, even in this butchered condition. The largestis twelve feet long; that is called a big crocodile here; but lastwinter the gentleman killed one that was seventeen feet long;that was a monster.In the stomach of one of these he found two pairs of bracelets,such as are worn by Nubian children, two " cunning " littleleathern bracelets ornamented with shells-a most uselessornament for a crocodile. The animal is becoming more andmore shy every year, and it is very difficult to get a shot at one.They come out in the night, looking for bracelets. One nightwe nearly lost Ahmed, one of our black boys; he had gone downupon the rudder, when an enquiring crocodile came along andmade a snap at him-when the boy climbed on deck he lookedwhite even by starlight.The invulnerability of the crocodile hide is exaggerated. Oneof these had two bullet-holes in his back. His slayer says hehas repeatedly put bullets through the hide on the back.EGYPTIAN “LOAFERS. ” 307When we came away we declined steaks, but the owner gave ussome eggs, so that we might raise our own crocodiles.Gradually we drift out of this almost utterly sterile country,and come to long strips of palm-groves, and to sakiyas innumerable, shrieking on the shore every few hundred feet. We havetime to visit a considerable village, and see the women at theirother occupation (besides lamentation) braiding each other'shair; sitting on the ground, sometimes two at a head, patientlytwisting odds and ends of loose hair into the snaky braids, andmuddling the whole with sand, water, and clay, preparatory totheoil. A few women are spinning with a hand- spindle and producing very good cotton-thread. All appear to have time ontheir hands. And what a busy place this must be in summer,when the heat is like that of an oven! The men loaf about likethe women, and probably do even less. Those at work aremostly slaves, boys and girls in the slighest clothing; and eventhese do a great deal of “ standing round. " Wooden hoes areused.The desert over which we walked beyond the town wasvery different from the Libyan with its drifts and drifts ofyellow sand. We went over swelling undulations (like ourrolling prairies), cut by considerable depressions, of sandstonewith a light sand cover but all strewn with shale or shingle.This black shale is sometimes seen adhering like a layer ofglazing to the coarse rock; and, though a part of the rock, ithas the queer appearance of having been a deposit solidifiedupon it and subsequently broken off. On the tops of thesehills we found everywhere holes scooped out by the natives insearch of nitre; the holes showed evidence, in dried mud, ofthe recent presence of water.We descended into a deep gorge, in which the rocks werebroken squarely down the face, exhibiting strata of red,white, and variegated sandstone; the gorge was a Wady thatran far back into the country among the mountains; wefollowed it down to a belt of sunt acacias and palms on theriver. This wady was full of rocks, like a mountain streamat home; a great torrent running long in it, had worn the·308 A MODERN into fantastic shapes, cutting punch-bowls and the like,and water had recently dried in the hollows. But it had notrained on the river.This morning we are awakened by loud talking and wrangling on deck, that sounds like a Paris revolution. We haveonly stopped for milk! The forenoon we spend among thefashionable ladies of Derr, the capital of Nubia, studying themodes, in order that we may carry home the latest. This isan aristocratic place. One of the eight-hundred-years-oldsycamore trees, of which we made mention, is still vigorousand was bearing the sycamore fig. The other is in front ofa grand mud- house with latticed windows, the residence ofthe Kashefs of Sultan Selim whose descendants still occupyit, and, though shorn of authority, are said to be proud oftheir Turkish origin. One of them, Hassan Kashef, an oldman in the memory of our dragoman, so old that he had tolift up his eyelids with his finger when he wanted to see, diedonly a few years ago. This patriarch had seventy-two wivesas his modest portion in this world; and as the Koran allowsonly four, there was some difficulty in settling the good man'sestate. The matter was referred to the Khedive, but he wiselyrefused to interfere. When the executor came to divide theproperty among the surviving children, he found one hundredand five to share the inheritance.66The old fellow had many other patriarchal ways. On hisdeath-bed " he left a legacy of both good and evil wishes,requests to reward this friend, and to serve out " thatenemy, quite in the ancient style, and in the Oriental style,recalling the last recorded words of King David, whoseexpiring breath was an expression of a wish for vengeanceupon one of his enemies, whom he had sworn not to kill. Itreads now as if it might have been spoken by a Bedaweesheykh to his family only yesterday:-" And, behold, thou hastwith thee Shimei the son of Gera, a Benjamite of Bahurim, whichcursed me with a grievous curse in the day when I went toMahanaim: but he came down to meet me at Jordan, and Isware to him by the Lord, saying, I will not put thee to deathTHE HEAD OF AN ENEMY. 309with the sword. Now therefore hold him not guiltless: forthou art a wise man, and knowest what thou oughtest to dounto him; but his hoar head bring thou down to the gravewith blood. So David slept with his fathers, and was buriedin the city of David. "We call at the sand-covered temple at A'mada, and crawlinto it; a very neat little affair, with fresh color and fivesculptures, and as old as the time of Osirtasen III. (the date ofthe obelisk of Heliopolis, of the Tombs of Beni Hassan, sayabout fifteen hundred years before Rameses II. ); and then sailquickly down to Korosko, passing over in an hour or so adistance that required a day and a half on the ascent.At Korosko there are caravans in from Kartoom; the cameldrivers wear monstrous silver rings, made in the interior, thecrown an inch high and set with blood- stone. I bought fromthe neck of a pretty little boy a silver " charm," a flat platewith the name of Allah engraved on it. Neither the boy nor thecharm had been washed since they came into being.The caravan had brought one interesting piece of freight,which had just been sent down the river. It was the head ofthe Sultan of Darfoor, preserved in spirits, and forwarded tothe Khedive as a present. This was to certify that the Sultanwas really killed, when Darfoor was captured by the army of theViceroy; though I do not know that there is any bounty on theheads of African Sultans. It is an odd gift to send to a rulerwho wears the European dress and speaks French, and whosechief military officers are Americans.The desolate hills behind Korosko rise a thousand feet, andwe climbed one of the peaks to have a glimpse of the desertroute and the country towards Kartoom. I suppose a moresavage landscape does not exist. The peak of black disintegrated rocks on which we stood was the first of an assemblage ofsuch as far as we could see south; the whole horizon was cutby these sharp peaks; and through these thickly clusteringhills the caravan trail made its way in sand and powdered dust.Shut in from the breeze, it must be a hard road to travel, evenwith a winter sun multiplying its rays from all these hot rocks;310 OUR the summer it would be frightful. But on these summits, oron any desert swell, the air is an absolute elixir of life; it has aquality of lightness but not the rarity that makes respirationdifficult.At a village below Korosko we had an exhibition of themanner of fighting with the long Nubian war- spear and the biground shield made of hippopotamus-hide. The men jumpedabout and uttered frightening cries, and displayed more agilitythan fight, the object being evidently to terrify by a threateningaspect; but the scene was as barbarous as any we see in Africanpictures. Here also was a pretty woman (pretty for her) withbeautiful eyes, who wore a heavy nose-ring of gold, which shesaid she put on to make her face beautiful; nevertheless shewould sell the ring for nine dollars and a half. The peoplealong here will sell anything they have, ornaments, charms toprotect them from the evil-eye,—they will part with anything formoney. At this village we took on a crocodile ten feet long,which had been recently killed, and lashed it to the horizontalyard. It was Abd- el- Atti's desire to present it to a friend inCairo, and perhaps he was not reluctant, when we should bebelow the cataract, to have it take the appearance, in the eyesof spectators, of having been killed by some one on this boat.We obtained above Korosko one of the most beautiful animalsin the world-a young gazelle-to add to our growing menagerie;which consists of a tame duck, who never gets away when hisleg is tied; a timid desert hare, who has lived for a long time ina tin box in the cabin, trembling like an aspen leaf night andday; and a chameleon.The chameleon ought to have a chapter to himself. We havereason to think that he has the soul of some transmigratingEgyptian. He is the most uncanny beast. We have made hima study, and find very little good in him. His changeablenessof color is not his worst quality. He has the nature of a spy,and he is sullen and snappish besides. We discovered that hiscolor is not a purely physical manifestation, but that it dependsupon his state of mind, upon his temper. When everything isserene, he is green as a May morning, but anger changes himTHAT UGLY CHAMELEON. 311instantly for the worse. It is however true that he takes hiscolor mainly from the substance upon which he dwells, not fromwhat he eats; for he eats flies and allows them to make noimpression on his exterior. When he was taken off an acaciatree, this chameleon was of the bright- green color of the leaves.Brought into our cabin, his usual resting-place was on thereddish maroon window curtains, and his green changed muddily into the color of the woollen. When angry, he wouldbecome mottled with dark spots, and have a thick cloudy color.This was the range of his changes of complexion; it is notenough (is it?) to give him his exaggerated reputation .I confess that I almost hated him, and perhaps cannot dohim justice. He is a crawling creature at best, and his modeof getting about is disagreeable; his feet have the power ofclinging to the slightest roughness, and he can climb anywhere; his feet are like hands; besides, his long tail is likeanother hand; it is prehensile like the monkey's. He feelshis way along very carefully, taking a turn with his tail aboutsome support, when he is passing a chasm, and not letting gountil his feet are firmly fixed on something else. And, then,the way he uses his eye is odious. His eye-balls are stuckupon the end of protuberances on his head, which protuberances work like ball-and- socket joints-as if you had your eyeon the end of your finger. When he wants to examineanything, he never turns his head; he simply swivels his eyeround and brings it to bear on the object. Pretending to livein cold isolation on the top of a window curtain, he is alwaysmaking clammy excursions round the cabin, and is sometimesfound in our bed-chambers. You wouldn't like to feel hiscold tail dragging over you in the night.The first question every morning, when we come to breakfast, is,"Where is that chameleon?"He might be under the table, you know, or on the cushions,and you might sit on him. Commonly he conceals his bodybehind the curtain, and just lifts his head above the roller.There he sits, spying us, gyrating his evil eye upon us, and312 THE REQUest of forTY WOMEN.never stirring his head; he takes the color of the curtain sonearly that we could not see him if it was not for that swiveleye. It is then that he appears malign, and has the aspect ofa wise but ill- disposed Egyptian whose soul has had ill luckin getting into any respectable bodies for three or fourthousand years. He lives upon nothing,-you would thinkhe had been raised in a French pension. Few flies happen hisway; and, perhaps he is torpid out of the sun so much of thetime, he is not active to catch those that come. I carried hima big one the other day, and he repaid my kindness bysnapping my finger. And I am his only friend.Alas, the desert hare, whom we have fed with corn, andgreens, and tried to breed courage in for a long time, diedthis morning at an early hour; either he was chilled out ofthe world by the cold air on deck, or he died of palpitation ofthe heart; for he was always in a flutter of fear, his heartgoing like a trip-hammer, when anyone approached him. Heonly rarely elevated his long silky ears in a serene enjoymentof society. His tail was too short, but he was, nevertheless,an animal to become attached to.Speaking of Hassan Kashef's violation of the Moslem law,in taking more than four wives, is it generally known thatthe women in Mohammed's time endeavored also to have theprivileges of men? Forty women who had cooked for thesoldiers who were fighting the infidels and had done greatservice in the campaign, were asked by the Prophet to nametheir reward. The chief lady, who was put forward to preferthe request of the others, asked that as men were permittedfour wives women might be allowed to have four husbands.The Prophet gave them a plain reason for refusing theirpetition, and it has never been renewed. The legend showsthat long ago women protested against their disabilities.The strong north wind, with coolish weather, continues.On Sunday we are nowhere in particular, and climb a highsandstone peak, and sit in the shelter of a rock, wherewandering men have often come to rest. It is a wild, desertplace, and there is that in the atmosphere of the day whichleads to talk of the end of the world.near.THE KHALIF AND THE FALSE PROPHETS. 313Like many other Moslems, Abd-el-Atti thinks that theseare the last days, bad enough days, and that the end drawsWe have misunderstood what Mr. Lane says aboutChrist coming to "judge " the world. The Moslems believethat Christ, who never died, but was taken up into heavenaway from the Jews, -a person in his likeness being crucifiedin his stead,-will come to rule, to establish the Moslemreligion and a reign of justice (the Millenium); and that afterthis period Christ will die, and be buried in Medineh, not farfrom Mohammed. Then the world will end, and Azrael, theangel of death, will be left alone on the earth for forty days.He will go to and fro, and find no one; all will be in theirgraves. Then Christ and Mohammed and all the dead willrise. But the Lord God will be the final judge of all."Yes, there have been many false prophets. A man camebefore Haroun e' Rasheed pretending to be a prophet." What proof have you that you are one? What miraclecan you do? """ Anything you like.'"666 Christ, on whom be peace, raised men from the dead.' "" So will I. This took place before the king and thechief-justice. ' Let the head of the chief-justice be cut off,'said the pretended prophet, ‘ and I will restore him to life. " Oh,' cried the chief-justice, ' I believe that the man is areal prophet. Anyone who does not believe can have hishead cut off, and try it. ' ""A woman also claimed to be a prophetess. ' But, ' said theKhalif Haroun e' Rasheed, ' Mohammed declared that he wasthe last man who should be a prophet.'" He didn't say that a woman shouldn't be, ' the woman sheanswer. "The people vary in manners and habits here from villageto village, much more than we supposed they would. Walking this morning for a couple of miles through the twovillages of Maharraka-rude huts scattered under palm-trees-we find the inhabitants, partly Arab, partly Barabra, andmany negro slaves, more barbaric than any we have seen;314 THE CAPTIVE'S CRY.boys and girls, till the marriageable age, in a state of nature,women neither so shy nor so careful about covering themselves with clothing as in other places, and the slaveswretchedly provided for. The heads of the young childrenare shaved in streaks, with long tufts of hair left; the womenare loaded with tawdry necklaces, and many ofthem, poor asthey are, sport heavy hoops of gold in the nose, and wearmassive silver bracelets.The slaves, blacks and mulattoes, were in appearance likethose seen formerly in our southern cotton-fields. I recall apicture, in abolition times, representing a colored man standing alone, and holding up his arms, in a manner beseechingthe white man, passing by, to free him. To-day I saw thepicture realized. A very black man, standing nearly nakedin the midst of a bean- field, raised up both his arms, and criedaloud to us as we went by. The attitude had all the oldpathos in it. As the poor fellow threw up his arms in a wilddespair, he cried " Backsheesh, backsheesh, O! howadji! ”For the first time we found the crops in danger. Thecountry was overrun with reddish-brown locusts, which settled in clouds upon every green thing; and the people invain attempted to frighten them from their scant strip ofgrain. They are not, however, useless. The attractive womencaught some, and, pulling off the wings and legs, offered themto us to eat. They said locusts were good; and I suppose theyare such as John the Baptist ate. We are not Baptists.As we go down the river we take in two or three temples aday, besides these ruins of humanity in the village, Dakkeh,Gerf Hossáyn, Dendoor. It is easy to get enough of thesesecond- class temples. That at Gerf Hossáyn is hewn in therock, and is in general arrangement like Ipsambool-it wasalso made by Rameses II.-but is in all respects inferior, andlacks the Colossi. I saw sitting in the adytum four figureswhom I took to be Athos, Parthos, Aramis, and D'Artignanthough this edifice was built long before the day of the"Three Guardsmen."The people in the village below have such a bad reputationTHE SCHOOLMASTER AT-HOME. 315that the dragoman, in great fright sent sailors after us, whenhe found we were strolling through the country alone. Wehave seen no natives so well off in cattle, sheep, and cookingutensils, or in nose- rings, beads, and knives; they are, however,a wild, noisy tribe, and the whole village followed us for amile, hooting for backsheesh. The girls wear a nose-ring anda girdle; the boys have no rings or girdles. The men arefierce and jealous of their wives, perhaps with reason, stabbingand throwing them into the river on suspicion, if they arecaught talking with another man. So they say. At thisvillage we saw pits dug in the sand (like those described in theOld Testament), in which cattle, sheep and goats were folded;it being cheaper to dig a pit than to build a stone fence.At Kalábshee are two temples, ruins on a sufficiently largescale to be imposing; sculptures varied in character andbeautifully colored; propylons with narrow staircases, andconcealed rooms, and deep windows bespeaking their use asfortifications and dungeons as well as temples; and columnsof interest to the architect; especially two, fluted (time ofRameses II . ) with square projecting abacus like the Doric,but with broad bases. The inhabitants are the most pestilenton the river, crowding their curiosities upon us, and clamoring for money. They have for sale gazelle-horns, and thehenna (which grows here) , in the form of a green powder.However, Kalábshee has educational facilities. I saw therea boys' school in full operation. In the open air, but in thesheltering angle of a house near the ruins, sat on the groundthe schoolmaster. Behind him leaned his gun against the wall;before him lay an open Koran; and in his hand he held a thinpalm rod with which he enforced education. He was dictatingsentences from the book to a scrap of a scholar, a boy who sat onthe ground, with an inkhorn beside him, and wrote the sentenceson a board slate, repeating the words in a loud voice as he wrote.Nearby was another urchin, seated before a slate leaning againstthe angle of of the wall, committing the writing on it to memory,in a loud voice also. When he looked off the stick remindedhim to attend to his slate. I do not know whether he calls thisa private or a public school.316 A STATE OF CONFUSION.Quitting these inhospitable savages as speedily as we can,upon the springing up of a south wind, we are going at a spanking rate, leaving a rival dahabeëh, belongingto an English lord, behind, when the adversary puts it intothe head of our pilot to steer across the river, and ourprosperous career is suddenly arrested on a sandbar. We arefast, and the English boat, keeping in the channel, shows usher rudder and disappears round the bend.Extraordinary confusion follows; the crew are in the water, theyare on deck, the anchor is got out, there are as many opinions,as people, and no one obeys. The long pilot is a spectator,after he has been wading about in the stream and comes ondeck. His gown is off and his turban also; his head is shaved;his drawers are in tatters like lace-work. He strides up anddown beating his breast, his bare poll shining in the sun like abilliard ball. We are on the sand nearly four hours, and theaccident, causing us to lose this wind, loses us, it so happens,three days. By dark we tie up near the most excruciatingSakiya in the world. It is suggested to go on shore and buythe property and close it out. But the boy who is driving willneither sell nor stop his cattle,At Gertassee we have more ruins and we pass a beautiful,single column, conspicuous for a long distance over the desert,as fine as the once " nameless column " in the Roman forum,These temples, or places of worship, are on the whole depressing. There was no lack of religious privileges if frequency ofreligious edifices gave them. But the people evidently had nopart in the ceremonies, and went never into these dark chambers,which are now inhabited by bats. The old religion does notcommend itself to me. Of what use would be one of thesetemples on Asylum Hill, in Hartford, and how would the Rev.Mr. Twichell busy himself in its dark recesses, I wonder, evenwith the help of the deacons and the committee? The Gothicis quite enough for us.This morning-we have now entered upon the month ofFebruary for the first time in Nubia, we have early a slighthaze, a thin veil of it; and passing between shores rocky andTOO MUCH ' CONVERSION.' 317high and among granite breakers, we are reminded of the Hudsonriver on a June morning. A strong north wind, however, comessoon to puff away this illusion , and it blows so hard that we areactually driven up-stream.The people and villages under the crumbling granite ledgesthat this delay enables us to see, are the least promising we haveencountered; women and children are more nearly barbariansin dress and manners, for the women, a single strip of browncotton, worn à la Bedawee, leaving free the legs, the right armand breast, is a common dress. And yet, some of these womenare not without beauty. One pretty girl sitting on a rock, thesun glistening on the castor-oil of her hair, asked for backsheeshin a sweet voice, her eyes sparkling with merriment. A flowerblooming in vain in this desert!Is it a question of " converting " these people? Certainly,nothing but the religion of the New Testament, put in practicehere, bringing in its train, industry, self- respect, and a desire toknow, can awaken the higher nature, and lift these creatures intoa respectable womanhood. But the task is more difficult than itwould be with remote tribes in Central Africa. These peoplehave been converted over and over again. They have had allsort of religions during the last few thousand years, and theyremain essentially the same. They once had the old Egyptianfaith, whatever it was; and subsequently they varied that withthe Greek and Roman shades ofheathenism. They then acceptedthe early Christianity, as the Abyssinians did, and had, for hundreds of years, opportunity of Christian worship, when therewere Christian churches all along the Nile from Alexander toMeroë, and holy hermits in every eligible cave and tomb. Andthen came Mohammed's friends, giving them the choice ofbelief or martyrdom, and they embraced the religion of Meccaas cordially as any other.They have remained essentially unchanged through all theirchanges. This hopelessness of their condition is in the fact thatin all the shiftings of religions and of dynasties, the women havecontinued to soak their hair in castor-oil. The fashion is as oldas the Nile world. Many people look upon castor- oil as an ex-318 STORY OF THE KAABEH.cellent remedy. I should like to know what it has done for Africa.At Dabód is an interesting ruin, and a man sits there in frontof his house, weaving, confident that no rain will come to spoilhis yarn. He sits and works the treadle of his loom in a holein the ground, the thread being stretched out twenty or thirtyfeet on the wall before him. It is the only industry of thevillage, and a group of natives are looking on. The poor weaverasks backsheesh, and when I tell him I have nothing smallerthan an English sovereign, he says he can change it!Here we find also a sort of Holly- Tree Inn, a house for charitable entertainments, such as is often seen in Moslem villages.It is a square mud- structure, entered by two doors, and containstwo long rooms with communicating openings. The dirt- floorsare cleanly swept and fresh mats are laid down at intervals.Any stranger or weary traveler, passing by, is welcome to comein and rest or pass the night, to have a cup of coffee and somebread. There are two cleanly dressed attendants, and one ofthem is making coffee, within, over a handful of fire, in a tinycoffee-pot. In front, in the sun, on neat mats, sit half a dozenturbaned men, perhaps tired wanderers and pilgrims in this world,whohave turned aside to rest for anhour, for a day, or for a week.They appear to have been there forever. The establishment ismaintained by a rich man of the place; but signs of an abode ofwealth we failed to discover in any of the mud-enclosures.When we are under way again, we express surprise at findinghere such an excellent charity." "You no think the Lord he take care for his own? says Abdel-Atti. "When the kin' [king] of Abyssinia go to ' stroy theKaabeh in Mecca "-"Did you ever see the Kaabeh? ""Many times. Plenty times I been in Mecca. "" In what part of the Kaabeh is the Black Stone? ""So. The Kaabeh is a building like a cube, about, I thinkhim, thirty feet high, built in the middle of the mosque at Mecca.It was built by Abraham, of white marble. In the outside theeast wall, near the corner, ' bout so (four feet) high you find him,the Black Stone, put there by Abraham, call him haggeh el ashad,WONDERful birdS AT MECCA. 319the lucky, the fortunate stone. It is opposite the sunrise.Where Abraham get him? God knows. If any one sick, hetouch this stone, be made so well as he was. So I hunderstand .The Kaabeh is in the centre of the earth, and has fronts to thefour quarters of the globe, Asia, Hindia, Egypt, all places, towardwhich the Moslem kneel in prayer. Near the Kaabeh is the well,the sacred well Zem-Zem, has clear water, beautiful, so lifely.One time a year, in the month before Ramadán, Zem- Zemspouts up high in the air, and people come to drink of it. WhenHagar left Ishmael, to look for water, being very thirsty, thelittle fellow scratched with his fingers in the sand, and a springof water rushed up; this is the well Zem- Zem . I told you thesame water is in the spring in Syria, El Gebel; I find him justthe same; come under the earth from Zem-Zem. ""When the kin' of Abyssinia, who not believe, what you callinfidel, like that Englishman, yes, Mr. Buckle, I see him in Sinaiand Petra- very wise man, know a great deal, very nice gentleman, I like him very much, but I think he not believe-when thekin' of Abyssinia came with all his great army and his elephantsto fight against Mecca, and to ' stroy the Kaabeh as well thesame time to carry off all the cattle of the people, then the peoplethey say, ' the cattle are ours, but the Kaabeh is the Lord's, andhe will have care over it; the Kaabeh is not ours. ' There wasone of the elephants of the kin ' of Abyssinia, the name of Mahmoud, and he was very wise, more wise than anybody else.When he came in sight of Mecca, he turned back and went theother way, and not all the spears and darts of the soldiers couldstop him. The others went on. Then the Lord sent out ofthehell very small birds, with very little stones, taken out of hell,in their claws, no larger than mustard seeds; and the birds dropped these on the heads of the soldiers that rode on the elephants-generally three or four on an elephant. The little seeds wentright down through the men and through the elephants, andkilled them, and by this the army was ' stroyed. "' When the kin ' , after that, come into the mosque, some poweroutside himself made him to bow down in respect to the Kaabeh.He went away and did not touch it. And it stands there thesame now. "



WE are on deck early to see the approach to Philæ,which is through a gateway of high rocks. The sceneryis like parts of the Rhine; and as we come in sight ofthe old mosque perched on the hillside, and the round tomb onthe pinnacle above, it is very like the Rhine, with castle ruins.The ragged and rock island of Biggeh rises before us and seemsto stop the way, but, at a turn in the river, the little temple, withits conspicuous columns, then the pylon of the great temple,and at length the mass of ruins, that cover the little island ofPhilæ, open on the view.In the narrows we meet the fleet of government boats conveying the engineer expedition going up to begin the railway fromWady Halfa to Berber. Abd- el- Atti does not like the prospectof Egypt running deeper and deeper in debt, with no good tocome ofit, he says; he believes that the Khedive is acting underthe advice of England, which is entirely selfish and only desiresa short way to India, in case the French should shut the SuezCanal against them (his view is a very good example of a Moslem'scomprehension of affairs) . Also thinking, with all Moslems,that it is best to leave the world and its people as the Lord hascreated and placed them, he replied to an enquiry about hisopinion of the railroad, with this story of Jonah:-"When the prophet Jonah came out of the whale and satdown on the bank to dry under a tree ( I have seen the tree) inSyria, there was a blind man sitting near by, who begged theprophet to give him sight. Then Jonah asked the Lord for help,320PHILE. 321and the blind man was let to see. The man was eating dates atthe same time, and the first thing he did when he got his eyesopen was to snap the hard seeds at Jonah, who you know wasvery tender from being so long in the whale. Jonah was stungon his skin, and bruised by the stones, and he cry out,"O! Lord, how is this? "And the Lord said, “ Jonah, you not satisfied to leave thingsas I placed ' em; and now you must suffer for it. "One muses and dreams at Philæ. and does not readily arousehimself to the necessity of exploring and comprehending themarvels and the beauties that insensibly lead him into sentimental reveries. Ifever the spirit of beauty haunted a spot, it is this.Whatever was harsh in the granite ledges, or too sharp in thegranite walls, whatever is repellant in the memory concerningthe uses ofthese temples of a monstrous theogony, all is softenednow by time, all asperities are worn away; nature and art growlovely together in a gentle decay, sunk in a repose too beautifulto be sad. Nowhere else in Egypt has the grim mystery of theEgyptians cultus softened into so harmless a memory.The oval island contains perhaps a hundred acres. It is arock, with only a patch or two of green, and a few scatteredpalms, just enough to give it a lonely, poetic, and not a fruitfulaspect, and, as has been said, is walled all round from the water'sedge. Covered with ruins, the principal are those ofthe templeof Isis . Beginning at the southern end of the island, where aflight of steps led up to it, it stretches along, with a curvedand broadening colonnade, giant pylons, great courts and coveredtemples. It is impossible to imagine a structure or series ofstructures, more irregular in the lines or capricious in the forms.The architects gave free play to their fancy, and we find here thefertility and variety, if not the grotesqueness of imagination ofthe medieval cathedral builders. The capitals of the columnsof the colonnade are sculptured in rich variety; the walls of thewest cloister are covered with fine carvings, the color on themstill fresh and delicate; and the ornamental designs are asbeautiful and artistic as the finest Greek work, which some of itsuggests: as rich as the most lovely Moorish patterns, many of 21322 THE MYTH OF OSIRIS.which seem to have been copied from these living creationsdiamond- work, birds, exquisite medallions offlowers, and sphinxes.Without seeing this mass of buildings, you can have no notionof the labor expended in decorating them. All the surfaces ofthe gigantic pylons, of the walls and courts, exterior and interior.are covered with finely and carefully cut figures and hieroglyphics, and a great deal of the work is minute and delicatechiselling. You are lost in wonder if you attempt to estimate thetime and the number of workmen necessary to accomplish allthis. It seems incredible that men could ever have had patienceor leisure for it. A great portion of the figures, within andwithout, have been, with much painstaking, defaced; probablyit was done by the early Christians, and this is the only impressthey have left oftheir domination in this region.The most interesting sculptures, however, at Philæ arethose in a small chamber, or mortuary chapel, on the roof ofthe main temple, touching the most sacred mystery of theEgyptian religion, the death and resurrection of Osiris. Thismyth, which took many fantastic forms, was no doubt thatforbidden topic upon which Herodotus was not at liberty tospeak. It was the growth of a period in the Egyptian theology when the original revelation of one God grew weak andbegan to disappear under a monstrous symbolism . It ispossible that the priests, who held their religious philosophya profound secret from the vulgar (whose religion was simplya gross worship of symbols), never relinquished the beliefexpressed in their sacred texts, which say of God "that Heis the sole generator in heaven and earth, and that He has notbeen begotten. . That He is the only living and trueGod, who was begotten by Himself. . . He who hasexisted from the beginning. who has made all thingsand was not Himself made." It is possible that they mayhave held to this and still kept in the purity of its firstconception the myth of the manifestation of Osiris, howeverfantastic the myth subsequently became in mythology and inthe popular worship.·• • ·Osiris, the personification of the sun, the life-giving, cameHIS APOTHEOSIS. 323upon the earth to benefit men, and one of his titles was the"manifester of good and truth. " He was slain in a conflictwith Set the spirit of evil and darkness; he was buried; hewas raised from the dead by the prayers of his wife, Isis; hebecame the judge of the dead; he was not only the life- givingbut the saving deity; " himself the first raised from the dead,he assisted to raise those who were justified, after havingaided them to overcome all their trials."But whatever the priests and the initiated believed, thismyth is here symbolized in the baldest forms. We have themummy of Osiris passing through its interment and thesuccessive stages of the under- world; then his body is dismembered and scattered, and finally the limbs and organs arereassembled and joined together, and the resurrection takesplace before our eyes. It reminds one of a pantomime of theRavels, who used to chop up the body of a comrade and thenput him together again as good as new, with the insoucianceofbeings who lived in a world where such transactions werecommon. This whole temple indeed, would be a royal placefor the tricks of a conjurer or the delusions of a troop of stagewizards. It is full of dark chambers and secret passages,some of them in the walls and some subterranean, theentrances to which are only disclosed by removing a closefitting stone,The great pylons, ascended by internal stairways, havehabitable chambers in each story, lighted by deep slits ofwindows, and are like palace fortresses. The view from thesummit of one of them is fascinating, but almost grim; thatis, your surroundings are huge masses of granite mountainsand islands, only relieved by some patches of green and a fewpalms on the east shore. But time has so worn and fashionedthe stones of the overtopping crags, and the color of the redgranite is so warm, and the contours are so softened that underthe brilliant sky the view is mellowed and highly poetical, andought not to be called grim.This little island, gay with its gorgeously colored walls,graceful colonnades, garden- roofs, and spreading terraces, set in324 THE HEIGHTS OF BIGGEH.its rim of swift water, protected by these granite fortresses, bentover by this sky, must have been a dear and sacred place to theworshippers of Isis and Osiris, and we scarcely wonder that thecelebration of their rites was continued so long in our era. Wedo not need, in order to feel the romance of the place, to knowthat it was a favorite spot with Cleopatra, and that she mooredher silken-sailed dahabeëh on the sandbank where ours nowlies. Perhaps she was not a person of romantic nature. Thereis a portrait of her here (the authenticity of which rests upon Iknow not what authority) stiffly cut in the stone, in which sheappears to be a resolute woman with full sensual lips and adetermined chin. Her hair is put up in decent simplicity. ButI half think that she herself was like her other Egyptian sistersand made her silken locks to shine with the juice of the castor-oilplant. But what were these mysteries in which she took part,and what was this worship, conducted in these dark and secretchambers? It was veiled from all vulgar eyes; probably thepeople were scarcely allowed to set foot upon the sacred island.Sunday morning was fresh and cool, with fleecy clouds, lightand summer-like. Instead of Sabbath bells, when I rose late, Iheard the wild chant of a crew rowing a dahabeëh down theechoing channel. And I wondered how church bells, rung onthe top of these pylons, would sound reverberating among thesegranite rocks and boulders. We climbed, during the afternoon,to the summit of the island of Biggeh, which overshadowsPhile, and is a most fantastic pile of crags. You can bestunderstand this region by supposing that a gigantic internalexplosion lifted the granite strata into the air, and that thefragments fell hap-hazard . This Biggeh might have been piledup by the giants who attempted to scale heaven, when Zeusblasted them and their work with his launched lightning.From this summit, we have in view the broken, rock- strewnfield called the Cataract, and all the extraordinary islands ofrock above, that almost dam the river; there, over Philæ, onthe north shore, is the barrack-like Austrian Mission, and nearit the railway that runs through the desert waste, round thehills of the Cataract, to Assouan. These vast piled-up fragmentsAN ORIENTAL LEGEND. 325and splintered ledges, here and all about us, although of redgranite and syenite, are all disintegrating and crumbling intofine atoms. It is this decay that softens the hardness of theoutlines, and harmonizes with the ruins below. Wild as theconvulsion was that caused this fantastic wreck, the scene is notwithout a certain peace now, as we sit here this Sundayafternoon, on a high crag, looking down upon the pagan temples,which resist the tooth of time almost as well as the masses ofgranite rock that are in position and in form their sentinels.Opposite, on the hill, is the mosque, and the plastered domeof the sheykh's tomb, with its prayer-niche, a quiet and commanding place of repose. The mosque looks down uponthe ever- flowing Nile, upon the granite desolation, upon thedecaying temple of Isis, -converted once into a temple of thetrue God, and now merely the marvel of the traveler. Themosque itself, representative of the latest religion , is falling toruin. What will come next? What will come to break up thiscivilized barbarism?"Abd-el-Atti, why do you suppose the Lord permitted theold heathen to have such a lovely place as this Phile for thepractice of their superstitions? "" Do' know, be sure. Once there was a stranger, I reckonhim travel without any dragoman, come to the tent of theprophet Abraham, and ask for food and lodging; he was a kindof infidel, not believe in God, not to believe in anything but a bitof stone. And Abraham was very angry, and sent him awaywithout any dinner. Then the Lord, when he saw it , scoldedAbraham." But, ' says Abraham, ' the man is an infidel, and does notbelieve in Thee. '" Well,' the Lord he answer to Abraham, ' he has lived inmy world all his life, and I have suffered him, and taken care ofhim, and prospered him, and borne his infidelity; and youcould not give him a dinner, or shelter for one night in yourhouse!'"Then Abraham ran after the infidel, and called him back,and told him all that the Lord he say. And the infidel when heheard it, answer,326 "MR. FIDDLE."" If the Lord says that, I believe in Him; and I believe thatyou are a prophet.'""And do you think, Abd-el-Atti, that men have been moretolerant, the Friends of Mohammed, for instance, since then? "" Men pretty nearly always the same; I see ' em all ' boutalike. I read in our books a little, what you call ' em?—yes,anecdote, how a Moslem ' ulama, and a Christian priest, and aJewish rabbi, were in a place together, and had some conversation, and they agreed to tell what each would like best tohappen."The priest he began:-' I should like, ' says he, ' as manyMoslems to die as there are animals sacrificed by them on theday of sacrifice . '666 And I, ' says the ' ulama, ' would like to see put out of theway so many Christians as they eat eggs on Easter.'"Now it is your turn, says they both to the rabbi: —' Well, Ishould like you both to have your wishes.' I think the Jewhave the best of it. Not so? "The night is soft and still, and envelopes Philæ in a summerwarmth. The stars crowd the blue-black sky with scintillantpoints, obtrusive and blazing in startling nearness; they are allrepeated in the darker blue of the smooth river, where lie also,perfectly outlined, the heavy shadows of the granite masses.Upon the silence suddenly breaks the notes of a cornet, from adahabeëh moored above us, in pulsations, however, rather toemphasize than to break the hush of the night." Eh! that's Mr. Fiddle, " cries Abd-el-Atti, whose musicalnomenclature is not very extensive, " that's a him. "Once on a moonless night in Upper Nubia, as we lay tied tothe bank, under the shadow of the palms, there had swept pastus, flashing into sight an instant and then gone in the darkness,an upward-bound dahabeëh, from the deck of which a cornet-àpiston flung out, in salute, the lively notes of a popular Americanair. The player (whom the dragoman could never call by anyname but " Mr. Fiddle " ) , as we came to know later, was anIrish gentleman, Anglicized and Americanized, and indeedcosmopolitan, who has a fancy for going about the world andDREAMLAND. 327awaking here and there remote and commonly undisturbedechoes with his favorite brass horn. I daresay that moonlightvoyagers on the Hudson have heard its notes dropping downfrom the Highlands; it has stirred the air of every land on theglobe except India; our own Sierras have responded to itsinvitations, and Mount Sinai itself has echoed its strains. Thereis a prejudice against the cornet, that it is not exactly a familyinstrument; and not more suited to assist in morning andevening devotions than the violin , which a young clergyman,whom I knew, was endeavoring to learn, in order to play it,gently, at family prayers.This traveled cornet, however, begins to play, with deliberatepauses between the bars, the notes of that glorious hymn, “ Howfirm a foundation ye saints of the Lord, " following it with thePrayer from Der Freischutz, and that, again, with some familiarScotch airs (a transition perfectly natural in home- circles onSunday evening) , every note of which, leisurely floating out intothe night, is sent back in distant echoes. Nothing can belovelier than the scene, the tropical night, the sentimentalisland, the shadows of columns and crags, the mysteriouspresence of a brooding past,-and nothing can be sweeter thanthese dulcet, lingering, re-echoing strains, which are the musicof our faith, of civilization, of home. From these old templesdid never come, in the days of the flute and the darabooka, suchmelodies. And do the spirits of Isis and Osiris, and of Berenice,Cleopatra, and Antoninus, who worshipped them here, listen,and know perhaps that a purer and better spirit has come intothe world?In the midst of this echoing melody, a little boat, its sailnoiselessly furled, its gunwales crowded with gowned and whiteturbaned Nubians, glides out of the shadow and comes alongside, as silently as a ferry-boat of the under-world bearing therobed figures of the departed, and the venerable Reïs of theCataract steps on board, with es-salam ' aleykum; and the negotiation for shooting the rapids in the morning begins.The reïs is a Nubian of grave aspect, of a complexion manyshades darker than would have been needed to disqualify its328 WAITING for the PRINCE.possessor to enjoy civil rights in our country a few years ago,and with watchful and shrewd black eyes which have anoccasional gleam of humor; his robe is mingled black andwhite, his turban is a fine camels-hair shawl; his legs arebare, but he wears pointed red-morocco slippers. Thereis a long confab between him and the dragoman, over pipesand coffee, about the down trip. It seems that there is adahabeëh at Assouan, carrying the English Prince Arthurand a Moslem Prince, which has been waiting for ten daysthe whim of the royal scion, to make the ascent. Meantimeno other boat can go up or down. The cataract business isat a standstill. The government has given orders that noother boat shall get in the way; and many travelers' boatshave been detained from one to two weeks; some of themhave turned back, without seeing Nubia, unable to spend anylonger time in a vexatious uncertainty. The prince hassignified his intention of coming up the Cataract tomorrowmorning, and consequently we cannot go down, although thedescending channel is not the same as the ascending. Aconsiderable fleet of boats is now at each end of the cataract,powerless to move.The cataract people express great dissatisfaction at thisinterference in their concerns by the government, which doesnot pay them as much asthe ordinary traveler does for passingthe cataract. And yet they have their own sly and mysteriousmethod of dealing with boats that is not less annoying thanthe government favoritism. They will very seldom take adahabeëh through in a day; they have delight in detaining itin the rapids and showing their authority.When, at length, the Reïs comes into the cabin, to pay us avisit of courtesy, he is perfect in dignity and good- breeding,in spite of his bare legs; and enters into a discourse of thesituation with spirit and intelligence. In reply to a remark,that, in America we are not obliged to wait for princes, hiseyes sparkle, as he answers, with much vivacity of manner,"You quite right. In Egypt we are in a mess. Egypt is aewe sheep from which every year they shear the wool closeAN INLAND EXCURSION. 329off; the milk that should go the lamb they drink; and whenthe poor old thing dies, they give the carcass to the peoplethe skin they cut up among themselves. This season," hegoes on, " is to the cataracts like what the pilgrimage is toMecca and to Jerusalem-the time when to make the moneyfrom the traveler. And when the princes they come, crowding the traveler to one side, and the government makeseverything done for them for nothing, and pays only onedollar for a turkey for which the traveler pays two, ' bligesthe people to sell their provisions at its own price, " —thesheykh stopped." The Reïs, then, Abd- el-Atti, doesn't fancy this method ofdoing business? ""No, him say he not like it at all. ”And the Reïs kindled up, " You may call the Prince anythingyou like, you may call him king; but the real Sultan is the manwho pays his money and does not come here at the cost of thegovernment. Great beggars some of these big nobility; all thegreat people want the Viceroyal to do ' em charity and take ' emup the Nile, into Abyssinia, I don't know where all. I think thegreatest beggars always those who can best afford to pay. "With this philosophical remark the old Sheykh concludes along harangue, the substance of which is given above, and takeshis leave with a hundred complimentary speeches.Forced to wait, we employed Monday advantageously inexploring the land-route to Assouan, going by Mahatta, wherethe trading-boats lie and piles of merchandise lumber the shore.It is a considerable village, and full of most persistent beggarsand curiosity venders. The road, sandy and dusty, windsthrough hills of granite boulders-a hot and desolate though notdeserted highway, for strings of camels, with merchandise, werein sight the whole distance. We passed through the ancientcemetery, outside of Assouan, a dreary field of sand and rocks,the leaning grave- stones covered with inscriptions in old Arabic,(or Cufic), where are said to rest the martyred friends of theprophet who perished in the first battle with the infidels abovePhilæ.330 THE SYENITE QUARRIES.Returning, we made a détour to the famous syenite quarries,the openings of several of which are still visible. They wereworked from the sides and not in pits, and offer little to interestthe ordinary sight- seer. Yet we like to see where the old workmen chipped away at the rocks; there are frequent marks of thesquare holes that they drilled, in order to split off the stone withwet wedges of wood. The great obelisk which lies in the quarry,half covered by sand, is unfinished; it is tapered from the baseto its tip, ninety-eight feet, but it was doubtless, as the marksindicate, to be worked down to the size of the big obelisk atKarnak; the part which is exposed measures ten to eleven feetsquare. It lies behind ledges of rock, and it could only havebeen removed by cutting away the enormous mass in front of itor by hoisting it over. The suggestion of Mr. Wilkinson that itwas to be floated out by a canal, does not commend itself to onestanding on the ground.We came back by the long road, the ancient traveled way,along which, on the boulders, are rudely- cut sculptures andhieroglyphics, mere scratchings on the stone, but recording thepassage of kings and armies as long ago as the twelfth dynasty.Nearly all the way from Assouan to Philæ are remains of a hugewall of unburnt bricks, ten to fifteen feet broad and probablyfifteen to twenty feet high, winding along the valley and overthe low ridges. An apparently more unnecessary wall does notexist; it is said by people here to have been thrown up bytheMoslems as a protection against the Nubians when they firsttraversed this desert; but it is no doubt Roman. There areindications that the Nile once poured its main flood through thisopening.We emerge not far from the south end of the railway track,and at the deserted Austrian Mission . A few Nubian familieslive in huts on the bank ofthe stream . Among the bright- eyedyoung ladies, with shining hair, who entreat backsheesh, whilewe are waiting for our sandal, is the daughter of our up-riverpilot. We should have had a higher opinion of his dignity andrank if we had not seen his house and his family.After sunset the dahabeëhs of the Prince came up and wereADIEU TO PHILÆ. 331received with salutes by the waiting boats, which the royal craftdid not return. Why the dragoman of the arriving dahabeëhcame to ours with the Prince's request, as he said, for our cards,we were not informed; we certainly intended no offence by thesalute; it was, on the part of the other boats, a natural expressionof pleasure that the royal boat was at last out of the way.At dark we loose from lovely Philæ, in order to drop down toMahatta and take our station for running the cataract in themorning. As we draw out from the little fleet of boats, Irish,Hungarian, American, English, rockets and blue lights illuminethe night, and we go offin a blaze of glory. Regardless of thePresence, the Irish gentleman responds on his cornet with theStar-Spangled Banner, the martial strains of which echo fromall the hills.In a moment, the lights are out, the dahabeëhs disappear andthe enchanting island is lost to sight. We are gliding down theswift and winding channel, through granite walls, undertheshadow of giant boulders, immersed in the gloom of a nightwhich the stars do not penetrate. There is no sound save theregular, chopping fall of the heavy sweeps, which steady thetimorous boat, and are the only sign, breaking the oppressivesilence, that we are not a phantom ship in a world of shades.It is a short but ghostly voyage, and we see at length with a sighof relief the lines of masts and spars in the port of Mahatta.Working the boat through the crowd that lie there we moor forthe night, with the roar of the cataract in our ears.



WE ARE on deck before sunrise, a film is over the skyand a light breeze blows out our streamer-a badomen for the passage.The downward run of the Cataract is always made in the earlymorning, that being the time when there is least likely to be anywind. And a calm is considered absolutely necessary to thesafety of the boat. The north wind, which helps the passageup, would be fatal going down. The boat runs with the current,and any exterior disturbance would whirl her about and casther upon the rocks.If we are going this morning, we have no time to lose, for itis easy to see that this breeze, which is now uncertainly dallying,with our colors, will before long strengthen. The Cataractpeople begin to arrive; there is already a blue and white row ofthem squatting on the bank above us, drawing their cotton robesabout them, for the morning is a trifle chilly. They come loitering alongthe bank and sit down as if they were merely spectators,and had no interest in the performance.The sun comes, and scatters the cloud-films; as the sun riseswe are ready to go; everything has been made snug and fastabove and below; and the breeze has subsided entirely. Weought to take instant advantage of the calm; seconds count,now. But we wait for the Reïs of the Cataract, the head reïs,without whose consent no move can be made. It is the sly oldsheykh with whom we have already negociated, and he has hisreasons for delaying. By priority of arrival at Phile our boat332KIDNAPPING A SHEYKH. 333is entitled to be first taken down; but the dragoman of anotherboat has been crossing the palms ofthe guileless patriarch withgold pieces, and he has agreed to give the other boat the preference. It is not probable that the virtuous sheykh everintended to do so, but he must make some show of keeping hisbargain. He would like to postpone our voyage, and take thechances of another day.But here he comes, mounted on a donkey, in state, wrappedabout the head and neck in his cashmere, and with a train ofattendants-the imperturbable, shrewd old man. He halts amoment on the high bank, looks up at our pennant, mutterssomething about " wind, not good day, no safe, " and is coollyabout to ride by.Our dragoman in an instant is at his side, and with halfjocular but firm persistence, invites him to dismount. It is invain that the sheykh invents excuse after excuse for going on.There is a neighbor in the village whose child is dead, and hemust visit him. The consolation, Abd-el-Atti thinks, can bepostponed an hour or two, Allah is all merciful . He is chilly,his fingers are cold, he will just ride to the next house and warmhis hands, and by that time we can tell whether it is to be agood morning; Abd- el- Atti is sure that he can warm his fingersmuch better on our boat, in fact he can get warm all throughthere."I'll warm him if he won't come. " continues the dragoman,turning to us; " if I let him go by, the old rascal, he slip downto Assouan, and that become the last of him."Before the patriarch knows exactly what has happened, or theother dragoman can hinder, he is gently hustled down the steepbank aboard our boat. There is a brief palaver, and then he isseated, with a big bowl of coffee and bread; we are still waiting,but it is evident that the decisive nod has been given. Thecomplexion of affairs has changed!The people are called from the shore; before we interpretrightly their lazy stir, they are swarming on board. The menare getting their places on the benches at the oars-three stoutfellows at each oar; it looks like" business. " The three principal334 SEVEN HUNDRED RELATIONS.reïses are on board; there are at least a dozen steersmen;several heads of families are present, and a dozen boys. Morethan seventy-five men have invaded us—and they may all beneeded to get ropes ashore in case of accident. This unusualswarm of men and the assistance of so many sheykhs, theseextra precautions, denote either fear, or a desire to impress uswith the magnitude of the undertaking. The head reïs shakeshis head at the boat and mutters, " much big. " We have aboardalmost every skillful pilot of the rapids.The Cataract flag, two bands of red and yellow with the nameof "Allah " worked on it in white, is set up by the cabin stairs.There is a great deal of talking, some confusion, and a littlenervousness. Our dragoman cheerfully says, " we will hopefor the better, " as the beads pass through his fingers. The reïsesare audibly muttering their prayers. The pilots begin to stripto their work. A bright boy of twelve years, squat on deck bythe tiller, is loudly and rapidly reciting the Koran.At the last moment, the most venerable reïs of the cataractcomes on board, as a great favor to us. He has long beensuperannuated, his hair is white, his eye-sight is dim, but whenhe is on board all will go well. Given a conspicous seat ina chair on the cabin deck, he begins at once prayers for our safepassage. This sheykh is very distinguished, tracing his ancestryback beyond the days of Abraham; his family is very largeseven hundred is the number of his relations; this seems to bea favorite number; Ali Moorad at Luxor has also seven hundredrelations. The sheykh is treated with great deference; he seemsto have had something to do with designing the cataract, andopening it to the public.The last rope is hauled in; the crowd on shore cheer; ourrowers dip the oars, and in a moment we are sweeping alongin the stiff current, avoiding the boulders on either side. Wego swiftly. Everybody is muttering prayers now; two venerablereïses seated on a box in front of the rudder increase thespeed of their devotions; and the boy chants the Koran with afreer swing.Our route down is not the same as it was up. We pass theMAKINGN THE CHUTE. 335head of the chief rapid-in which we struggle-into which itwould need only a wink ofthe helm to tnrn us-and sweep awayto the west side; and even appear to go a little out of our wayto run near a precipice of rock. A party of ladies and gentlemen who have come down from their dahabeëh above, to seeus make the chûte, are standing on the summit, and wavehandkerchiefs and hats as we rush by.If it were straight, itBefore us, we can see the great rapids—a down-hill prospect.The passage is narrow, and so crowded is the hurrying waterthat there is a ridge down the centre. On this ridge, which isbroken and also curved, we are to go.would be more attractive, but it curves short to the right nearthe bottom of the rapid, and, if we do not turn sharp with it,we shall dash against the rocks ahead, where the waves strikein curling foam. All will depend upon the skill and strengthofthe steersmen, and the sheer at the exact instant.There is not long to think of it, however, and no possibilitynow of evading the trial. Before we know it, the nose of theboat is in the rapid, which flings it up in the air; the next secondwe are tossed on the waves. The bow dips, and a heavy wavedeluges the cook's domain; we ship a tun or two of water, thedragoman, who stands forward, is wet to his breast; but theboat shakes it off and rises again, tossed like an egg-shell. It isglorious. The boat obeys her helm admirably, as the half-dozenpilots, throwing their weight upon the tiller, skillfully veer itslightly or give it a broad sweep.It is a matter of only three or four minutes, but they areminutes of intense excitement. In the midst of them, the reïsof our boat, who has no command now and no responsibility,and is usually imperturbably calm, becomes completely unmannedby the strain upon his nerves, and breaks forth into convulsiveshouting, tears and perspiration running down his cheeks. Hehas "the power," and would have hysterics if he were not a man.A half-dozen people fly to his rescue, snatch off his turban, holdhis hands, mop his face, and try to call him out of his panic.By the time he is somewhat composed, we have shunned therocks and made the turn, and are floating in smoother but still336 COMELY MUTTON.swift water. The reïses shake hands and come to us with salàmsand congratulations. The chief pilot desires to put my fez onhis own head in token of great joy and amity. The boy stopsshouting the Koran, the prayers cease, the beads are put up. Itis only when we are in a tight place that it is necessary to callupon the name of the Lord vigorously."You need not have feared, " says a reïs of the Cataract to ours,pointing to the name on the red and yellow flag, “ Allah wouldbring us through. "That there was no danger in this passage we cannot affirm.The dahabeëhs that we left at Mahatta, ready to go down, andwhich might have been brought through that morning, were detained four or five days upon the whim of the reïses. Ofthe twothat came first, one escaped with a slight knock against the rocks.and the other was dashed on them, her bottom staved in, andhalf filled with water immediately. Fortunately, she was fast onthe rock; the passengers, luggage, and stores were got ashore;and after some days the boat was rescued and repaired.For a mile below this chûte we have rapid going, rocks to shun,short turns to make, and quite uncertainty enough to keep us onthe qui vive, and finally, another lesser rapid, where there is infinitely more noise by the crew, but less danger from the riverthan above.As we approach the last rapid, a woman appears in the swiftstream, swimming by the help of a log-that being the handyferry-boat of the country; her clothes are all in a big basket,and the basket is secured on her head. The sandal, which ismaking its way down a side channel, with our sheep on board,is signalled to take this lady of the lake in, and land her on theopposite shore. These sheep of ours, though much tossed about,seem to enjoy the voyage and look about upon the raging scenewith that indifference which comes of high breeding. They areblack, but that was not to their prejudice in their Nubian home.They are comely animals in life, and in death are the best muttonin the East; it is said that they are fed on dates, and that thisdiet imparts to their flesh its sweet flavor. I think their excellence is quite as much due to the splendid air they breathe.ARTLESS CHILDREN OF THE SUN! 337While we are watching the manoeuvring of the boat, the womanswims to a place where she can securely lodge her precious login the rocks and touch bottom with her feet. The boat followsher and steadies itself against the same rocks, about which theswift current is swirling. The water is up to the woman's neck,and the problem seems to be to get the clothes out of the basketwhich is on her head, and put them on, and not wet the clothes.It is the old myth of Venus rising from the sea, but under changedconditions, and in the face of modern sensitiveness. How it wasaccomplished, I cannot say, but when I look again the aquaticVenus is seated in the sandal, clothed, dry, and placid.We were an hour passing the rapids, the last part of thetime with a strong wind against us; if it had risen sooner weshould have had serious trouble. As it was, it took anotherhour with three men ateach oar, to work down to Assouanthrough the tortuous channel, which is full of rocks andwhirlpools, The men at each bank of oars belonged todifferent tribes, and they fell into a rivalry of rowing, whichresulted in an immense amount of splashing, spurting, yelling,chorusing, and calling on the Prophet. When the contestbecame hot, the oars were all at sixes and sevens, and in factthe rowing gave way to vituperation and a general scrimmage.Once, in one of the most ticklish places in the rapids, therowers had fallen to quarrelling, and the boat would havegone to smash, if the reïs had not rushed in and laid abouthim with a stick. These artless children ofthe sun! However we came down to our landing in good form, exchangingsalutes with the fleet of boats waiting to make the ascent.At once four boats, making a gallant show with theirspread wings, sailed past us, bound up the cataract. Thepassengers fired salutes, waved their handkerchiefs, and exhibited the exultation they felt in being at last under way forPhilæ; and well they might, for some of them had beenwaiting here fifteen days.But alas for their brief prosperity. The head reïs was notwith them; that autocrat was still upon our deck, leisurelystowing away coffee, eggs, cold meat, and whatever provisions22338 A MODEL OF INTEGRITY.were brought him, with the calmness of one who has a goodconscience. As the dahabeëhs swept by he shook his head andmurmured, " not much go. "And they did " not much go. " They stopped indeed, andlay all day at the first gate, and all night. The next morning,two dahabeëhs, carrying persons of rank, passed up, and weregiven the preference, leaving the first-comers still in therapids; and two days after, they were in mid-passage, andkept day after day in the roar and desolation of the cataract,at the pleasure of its owners. The only resource they hadwas to write indignant letters of remonstrance to the governorat Assouan.This passage of the cataract is a mysterious business, thesecrets of which are only mastered by patient study. Whythe reïses should desire to make it so vexatious is the primemystery. The traveler who reaches Assouan often finds himself entangled in an invisible web of restraints. There is noopposition to his going on; on the contrary the governor, thereïses, and everyone overflow with courtesy and helpfulness.But, somehow, he does not go on, he is played with from dayto day. The old sheykh, before he took his affectionate leaveof us that morning, let out the reason of the momentaryhesitation he had exhibited in agreeing to take our boat upthe cataract when we arrived. The excellent owners, honestAboo Yoosef and the plaintive little Jew of Bagdad, had senthim a bribe of a whole piece of cotton cloth, and some moneyto induce him to prevent our passage. He was not to refuse,not by any means, for in that case the owners would havebeen liable to us for the hundred pounds forfeit named in thecontract in case the boat could not be taken up; but he wasto amuse us, and encourage us, and delay us, on variouspretexts, so long that we should tire out and freely choosenot to go any farther.The integrity of the reïs was proof against the seduction ofthis bribe; he appropriated it, and then earned the heavy feefor carrying us up, in addition. I can add nothing by way ofeulogium upon this clever old man, whose virtue enabledhim to withstand so much temptation.JUSTICE AT ASSOUAN. 339We lay for two days at the island Elephantine, oppositeAssouan, and have ample time to explore its two miserablevillages, and to wander over the heaps on heaps, the débris ofso many successive civilizations. All day long, women andchildren are clambering over these mounds of ashes, pottery,bricks, and fragments of stone, unearthing coins, images,beads, and bits of antiquity, which the strangers buy. Thereis nothing else on the island. These indistinguishable moundsare almost the sole evidence of the successive occupation ofancient Egyptians, Canaanites, Ethiopians, Persians, Greeks,Romans, Christians, and conquering Arabs. But the greyisland has an indefinable charm. ' The northern end is greenwith wheat and palms; but if it were absolutely naked, itsfine granite outlines would be attractive under this splendidsky. The days are lovely, and the nights enchanting.Nothing more poetic could be imagined than the silveryreaches of river at night, with their fringed islands andshores, the stars and the new moon, the uplifted rocks, andthe town reflected in the stream.Of Assouan itself, its palm-groves and dirty huddle ofdwellings, we have quite enough in a day. Curiosity leads ustovisit the jail, and we find there, by chance, one of our sailors,who is locked up for insubordination, and our venerable reïskeeping him company, for being inefficient in authority overhis crew. In front of the jail, under the shade of two largeacacia trees, the governor has placed his divan and holds hislevees in the open air, transacting business, and entertaininghis visitors with coffee and cigars. His excellency is a very"smartish," big black fellow, not a negro nor a Nubianexactly, but an Ababdeh, from a tribe of desert Arabs; a manof some aptitude for affairs and with very little palaver. Thejail has an outer guard-room, furnished with divans and openat both ends, and used as a court ofjustice. A not formidabledoor leads to the first room, which is some twenty feet square;and here, seated upon the ground with some thirty others, weare surprised to recognize our ' reïs. The respectable oldincapable was greatly humiliated by the indignity. Although340 OUR STEERSMAN'S ‘ACCCIDENT'he was speedily released, his incarceration was a mistake; itseemed to break his spirit, and he was sullen and uncheerfulever afterwards. His companions were in for trivial offences:most of them for not paying the government taxes, or fordebt to the Khedive, as the phrase was. In an adjoining,smaller room, were the great criminals, the thieves andmurderers. Three murderers were chained together by enormous iron cables attached to collars about their necks, andtheir wrists were clamped in small wooden stocks. In thiscompany were five decent- looking men, who were also boundtogether by heavy chains from neck to neck; we were toldthat these were the brothers of men who had run away fromthe draft, and that they would be held until their relationssurrendered themselves. They all sat glumly on the ground.The jail does not differ in comfort from the ordinary houses;and the men are led out once a day for fresh air; we saw themurderers taking an airing, and exercise also in lugging theirponderous irons.We departed from Assouan early in the morning, withwater and wind favorable for a prosperous day. At seveno'clock our worthy steersman stranded us on a rock. It wasa little difficult to do it, for he had to go out of his way andto leave the broad and plainly staked-out channel. But hedid it very neatly. The rock was a dozen feet out of water,and he laid the boat, without injury, on the shelving upperside of it, so that the current would constantly wash it furtheron, and the falling river would desert it. The steersman wasborn in Assouan and knows every rock and current here,even in the dark. This accident no doubt happened out ofsympathy with the indignity to the reïs. That able commander is curled up on the deck ill, and no doubt feltgreatly grieved when he felt the grating of the bottom uponthe rock; but he was not too ill to exchange glances with theserene and ever-smiling steersman. Three hours after thestranding, our crew have succeeded in working us a littlefurther on than we were at first, and are still busy; surelythere are in all history no such navigators as these.It is with some regret that we leave, or are trying to leave,LEAVING NUBIA. 341Nubia, both on account of its climate and its people. Themen, various sorts of Arabs as well as the Nubians, are bettermaterial than the fellaheen below, finer looking, with morespirit and pride, more independence and self- respect. Theyare also more barbarous; they carry knives and heavy sticksuniversally, and guns if they can get them, and in manyplaces have the reputation of being quarrelsome, turbulent,and thieves. But we have rarely received other than courteous treatment from them. Some of the youngest womenare quite pretty, or would be but for the enormous nose andear rings, the twisted hair and the oil; the old women are allunnecessarily ugly. The children are apt to be what mightbe called free in apparel, except that the girls wear fringe,but the women are as modest in dress and manner as those ofEgypt. That the highest morality invariably prevails, however, one cannot affirm, notwithstanding the privilege ofhusbands, which we are assured is sometimes exercised, ofdisposing of a wife (by means of the knife and the river) whomay have merely incurred suspicion by talking privatelywith another man. This process is evidently not frequent,for women are plenty, and we saw no bodies in the river.But our chief regret at quitting Nubia is on account of theclimate. It is incomparably the finest winter climate I haveever known; it is nearly perfect. The air is always elasticand inspiring; the days are full of sun; the nights are cooland refreshing; the absolute dryness seems to counteract thedanger from changes of temperature. You may do therewhat you cannot in any place in Europe in the winter-getwarm. You may also, there, have repose with languor.We went on the rock at seven and got off at two. Thegovernor of Assouan was asked for help and he sent downa couple of boat-loads of men, who lifted us off by mainstrength and the power of their lungs. We drifted on, but atsunset we were not out of sight of the mosque of Assouan.Strolling ashore, we found a broad and rich plain, largepalm-groves and wheat-fields, and a swarming population-instriking contrast to the country above the Cataract. The342 "A PERFECT SHAME!”character of the people is wholly different; the women areneither so oily, nor have they the wild shyness of the Nubians;they mind their own business and belong to a more civilizedsociety; slaves, negroes as black as night, abound in thefields. Some of the large wheat-fields are wholly enclosedby substantial unburnt brick walls, ten feet high.Early in the evening, our serene steersman puts us hardaground again on a sandbar. I suppose it was anotheraccident. The wife and children of the steersman live at alittle town opposite the shoal upon which we have so conveniently landed, and I suppose the poor fellow wanted anopportunity to visit them. He was not permitted leave ofabsence while the boat lay at Assouan, and now the dragomansays that, so far as he is concerned, the permission shall notbe given from here, although the village is almost in sight;the steersman ought to be punished for his conduct, and hemust wait till he comes up next year before he can see hiswife and children. It seems a hard case, to separate a manfrom his family in this manner." I think it's a perfect shame, " cries Madame, when shehears of it, "not to see his family for a year! ""But one of his sons is on board, you know, as a sailor.And the steersman spent most of his time with his wife theboy's mother, when we were at Assouan. ""I thought you said his wife lived opposite here?""Yes, but this is a newer one, a younger one; that is hisold wife, in Assouan.""Oh! ""The poor fellow has another in Cairo. ""Oh! "" He has wives, I daresay, at proper distances along theNile, and whenever he wants to spend an hour or two withhis family, he runs us aground.""I don't care to hear anything more about him. "The Moslem religion is admirably suited to the poor mariner,and especially to the sailor on the Nile through a country thatis all length and no width.



ON a high bluff stands the tottering temple of Kom Omboconspicuous from a distance, and commanding a drearywaste of desert. Its gigantic columns are of the Ptolemaictime, and the capitals show either Greek influence or the relaxation ofthe Egyptian hieratic restraint.The temple is double, with two entrances and parallel suitesof apartments, a happy idea of the builders, impartally to splitthe difference between good and evil; one side is devoted to theworship of Horus, the embodiment of the principle of Light, andthe other to that of Savak, the crocodile-headed god of Darkness.I fear that the latter had here the more worshippers; his titlewas Lord of Ombos, and the fear of him spread like night. Onthe sand-bank, opposite, the once-favored crocodiles still loungein the sun, with a sharp eye out for the rifle of the foreigner, and,no doubt, wonder at the murderous spirit which has come intothe world to supplant the peaceful heathenism.These ruins are an example of the jealousy with which thehierarchy guarded their temples from popular intrusion. Thesacred precincts were enclosed by a thick and high brick wall,which must have concealed the temple from view except on theriver side; so formidable was this wall, that although the edificestands upon an eminence, it lies in a basin formed by the ruinsof the enclosure. The sun beating in it at noon converted it intoa reverberating furnace-a heat sufficient to melt any image notof stone, and not to be endured by persons who do not believe inSavak.343344 THE MYSTERIOUS PEBBle.We walked a long time on the broad desert below Ombos,over sand as hard as a sea-beach pounded by the waves, lookingfor the bed of pebbles mentioned in the handbook, and found ita couple of miles below. In the soft bank an enormous massofpebbles has been deposited, and is annually added to -sweepings of the Nubian deserts, flints and agates, bits of syenite fromAssouan, and colored stones in great variety. There is a traditionthat a sailor once found a valuable diamond here, and it seemsalways possible that one may pick some precious jewel outof the sand. Some of the desert pebbles, polished by ages ofsand-blasts, are very beautiful.Every day when I walk upon the smooth desert away from theriver, I look for colored stones, pebbles, flints, chalcedonies, andagates. And I expect to find, some day, the ewige pebble, thestone translucent, more beautiful than any in the world—perhaps,the lost seal of Solomon, dropped by some wandering Bedawee.I remind myself of one looking, always in the desert, for thepearl of great price, which all the markets and jewelers of theworld wait for. It seems possible, here under this serene sky,on this expanse of sand, which has been trodden for thousandsofyears by all the Oriental people in turn , by caravans, by merchants and warriors and wanderers, swept by so many geologicffoods and catastrophes, to find it. I never tire of looking, andcuriously examine every bit of translucent and variegated flintthat sparkles in the sand . I almost hope, when I find it, that itwill not be cut by hand of man, but that it will be changeable incolor, and be fashioned in a cunning manner by nature herself.Unless, indeed, it should be, as I said, the talismanic ring ofSolomon, which is known to be somewhere in the world.In the early morning we have drifted down to Silsilis, one ofthe most interesting localities on the Nile. The difference inthe level of the land above and below and the character of therocky passage at Silsilis teach that the first cataract was herebefore the sandstone dam wore away and transferred it to Assouan. Marks have been vainly sought here for the former height oftheNile above; and we were interested in examining the upperstrata of rocks laid bare in the quarries. At a height of perhapsANCIENT QUARRIES OF EGYPT. 345sixty feet from the floor of a quarry, we saw between two strataof sandstone a layer of other material that had exactly theappearance of the deposits of the Nile which so closely resemblerock along the shore . Upon reaching it we found that it wasfriable and, in fact, a sort of hardened earth. Analysis wouldshow whether it is a Nile deposit, and might contribute something to the solution of the date of the catastrophe here.The interest at Silsilis is in these vast sandstone quarries, andvery little in the excavated grottoes and rock-temples on theeast shore, with their defaced and smoke-obscured images.Indeed, nothing in Egypt, not even the temples and pyramids,has given us such an idea of the immense labor the Egyptiansexpended in building, as these vast excavations in the rock. Wehave wondered before where all the stone came from that wehave seen piled up in buildings and heaped in miles of ruins; wewonder now what use could have been made of all the stonequarried from these hills. But we remember that it was notremoved in a century, nor in ten centuries, but that for greatperiods of a thousand years workmen were hewing here, andthat much of the stone transported and scattered over Egypthas sunk into the soil out of sight.There are halfa dozen ofthese enormous quarries close together,each of which has its communication with the river. Themethod of working was this: -a narrow passage was cut in fromthe river several hundred feet into the mountain, or until thebest-working stone was reached, and then the excavation wasbroadened out without limit. We followed one ofthese passages,the sides of which are evenly-cut rock, the height of the hill.At length we came into an open area, like a vast cathedral inthe mountain, except that it wanted both pillars and roof. Thefloor was smooth, the sides were from fifty to seventy-five feethigh, and all perpendicular, and as even as if dressed down withchisel and hammer. This was their general character, but insome of them steps were left in the wall and platforms, showingperfectly the manner of working. The quarrymen worked fromthe top down perpendicularly, stage by stage. We saw one ofthese platforms, a third of the distance from the top, the only346 PRODIGIES OF LABOR.means of reaching which was by nicks cut in the face of therock, in which one might plant his feet and swing down by a rope.There was no sign of splitting by drilling or by the the use ofplugs, or of any explosive material. The walls of the quarriesare all cut down in fine lines that run from top to bottom slantingly and parallel. These lines have every inch or two roundcavities, as if the stone had been bored by some flexible instrument that turned in its progress. The workmen seem to havecut out the stone always of the shape and size they wanted touse; if it was for a statue, the place from which it came in thequarry is rounded, showing the contour of the figure taken.They took out every stone by the most patient labor. Whetherit was square or round, they cut all about it a channel four tofive inches wide, and then separated it from the mass underneathby a like broad cut. Nothing was split away; all was carefullychiseled out, apparently by small tools. Abandoned work,unfinished, plainly shows this. The ages and the amount oflabor required to hew out such enormous quantities of stone areheightened in our thought, by the recognition of this slowprocess. And what hells these quarries must have heen for theworkmen, exposed to the blaze of a sun intensified by the glaringreflection from the light-colored rock, and stifled for want of air.They have left the marks of their unending task in these littlechiselings on the face of the sandstone walls. Here and theresome one has rudely sketched a figure or outlined a hieroglyphic.At intervals places are cut in the rock through which ropescould be passed, and these are worn deeply, showing the use ofropes, and no doubt of derricks, in handling the stones.These quarries are as deserted now as the temples which weretaken from them; but nowhere else in Egypt was I more impressed with the duration, the patience, the greatness of therace that accomplished such prodigies of labor.The grottoes, as I said, did not detain us; they are commoncalling-places, where sailors and wanderers often light fires atnight and where our crew slept during the heat of this day, Wesaw there nothing more remarkable than the repeated figure ofthe boy Horus taking nourishment fromthe breast of his mother,HUMOR IN STONE. 347which provoked the irreverent remark of a voyager that Horuswas more fortunate than his dragoman had been in finding milkin this stony region.Creeping on, often aground and always expecting to be, theweather growing warmer as we went north, we reachedEdfoo. It was Sunday, and the temperature was like that ofa July day, a south wind and the mercury at 85°.In this condition of affairs it was not unpleasant to find atemple, entire, clean, perfectly excavated, and a cool retreatfrom the glare of the sun. It was not unlike entering acathedral. The door by which we were admitted was closedand guarded; we were alone; and we experienced somethingofthe sentiment of the sanctuary, that hush and cool serenitywhich is sometimes mistaken for religion, in the presence ofecclesiastical architecture.Although this is a Ptolemaic temple, it is, by reason of itsnearly perfect condition, the best example for study. Thepropylon which is two hundred and fifty feet high and onehundred and fifteen long, contains many spacious chambers,and confirms our idea that these portions of the temples wereresidences. The roof is something enormous, being composedof blocks of stone, three feet thick, by twelve wide, andtwenty-two long. Upon this roof are other chambers. Aswe wandered through the vast pillared courts, many chambers and curious passages, peered into the secret ways andunderground and intermural alleys, and emerged upon theroof, we thought what a magnificent edifice it must havebeen for the gorgeous processions of the old worship, whichare sculptured on the walls.But outside this temple and only a few feet from it is astone wall of circuit, higher than the roof of the temple itself.Like every inch of the temple walls, this wall outside andinside is covered with sculptures, scenes in river life, showinga free fancy and now and then a dash of humor; as, when arhinoceros is made to tow a boat-recalling the westernsportiveness of David Crockett with the alligator. Not onlydid this wall conceal the temple from the vulgar gaze, but348 A STORM on the river.outside it was again an enciente of unbaked brick, effectuallyexcluding and removing to a safe distance all the populacesMariette Bey is of the opinion that all the imposing ceremonieof the old ritual had no witnesses except the privileged onesof the temple; and that no one except the king could enterthe adytum.It seems to us also that the King, who was high priest andKing, lived in these palace-temples, the pylons of whichserved him for fortresses as well as residences. We find noruins of palaces in Egypt, and it seems not reasonable thatthe king who had all the riches of the land at his commandwould have lived in a hut of mud.From the summit of this pylon we had an extensive viewof the Nile and the fields of ripening wheat. A glance intothe squalid town was not so agreeable. I know it would bea severe test of any village if it were unroofed and one couldbehold its varied domestic life. We may from such a sightas this have some conception of the appearance of this worldto the angels looking down. Our view was into filthy courtsand roofless enclosures, in which were sorry women andunclad children, sitting in the dirt; where old people, emaciated and feeble, and men and women ill of some wastingdisease, lay stretched upon the ground, uncared for, stifled bythe heat and swarmed upon of flies.The heated day lapsed into a delicious evening, a half- moonover head, the water glassy, the shores fringed with palms,the air soft. As we came to El Kab, where we stopped, acarawan was whistling on the opposite shore-a long, shrillwhistle like that of a mocking-bird. If we had known, it wasa warning to us that the placid appearances of the night weredeceitful, and that violence was masked under this smilingaspect. The barometer indeed had been falling rapidly fortwo days. We were about to have our first experience ofwhat may be called a simoon.Towards nine o'clock, and suddenly, the wind began toblow from the north, like one of our gusts in summer,preceeding a thunderstorm . The boat took the alarm atAPATHY OF THE CREW. 349once and endeavored to fly, swinging to the wind and tuggingat her moorings. With great difficulty she was secured bystrong cables fore and aft anchored in the sand, but shetrembled and shook and rattled, and the wind whistledthrough the rigging as if we had been on the Atlantic -anyboat loose upon the river that night must have gone toinevitable wreck. It became at once dark, and yet it was aghastly darkness; the air was full of fine sand that obscuredthe sky, except directly overhead, where there were the ghostof a wan moon and some spectral stars. Looking upon theriver, it was like a Connecticut fog-but a sand fog; and theriver itself roared, and high waves ran against the current.When we stepped from the boat, eyes, nose, and mouth wereinstantly choked with sand, and it was almost impossible tostand. The wind increased, and rocked the boat like a stormat sea; for three hours it blew with much violence, and infact did not spend itself in the whole night." The worser storm, God be merciful, " says Abd- el - Atti,"ever I saw in Egypt."When it somewhat abated, the dragoman recognized adivine beneficence in it; " It show that God ' member us."It is a beautiful belief of devout Moslems that personalafflictions and illnesses are tokens of a heavenly care. Oftenwhen our dragoman has been ill, he has congratulated himselfthat God was remembering him"Not so? Afriend of me in Cairo was never in his life ill,never any pain, toothache, headache, nothing. Always well.He begin to have fear that something should happen, mebbeGod forgot him. One day I meet him in the Mooskee verymuch pleased; all right now, he been broke him the arm;God ' member him."During the gale we had a good specimen of Arab character.When it was at its height, and many things about the attackedvessel needed looking after, securing and tightening, most ofthe sailors rolled themselves up, drawing their heads intotheir burnouses, and went sound asleep. The after-sail wasblown loose and flapping in the wind; our reis sat composedly looking at it, never stirring from his haunches,350 THE GROTTOES OF EILETHYAS.and let the canvas whip to rags; finally a couple of men werearoused, and secured the shreds. The Nile crew is a marvelof helplessness in an emergency; and considering the dangersof the river to these top-heavy boats, it is a wonder that anyaccomplish the voyage in safety. There is no more disciplineon board than in a district- school meeting at home. Theboat might as well be run by ballot.It was almost a relief to have an unpleasant day to talkabout. The forenoon was like a mixed fall and spring day inNew England, strong wind, flying clouds, but the air full ofsand instead of snow; there was even a drop of rain, and weheard a peal or two of feeble thunder-evidently an articlenot readily manufactured in this country; but the afternoonsettled back into the old pleasantness.Ofthe objects of interest at Eilethyas I will mention onlytwo, the famous grottoes, and a small temple of AmunophIII. , not often visited. It stands between two and three milesfrom the river, in a desolate valley, down which the BishareeArabs used to come on marauding excursions. What freakplaced it in this remote solitude? It contains only one room,a few paces square, and is, in fact, only a chapel, but it is fullof capital pieces of sculptures of a good period of art. Thearchitect will find here four pillars, which clearly suggest theDoric style. They are fourteen- sided, but one of the planesis broader than the others and has a raised tablet of sculptures which terminate above in a face, said to be that ofLucina, to whom the temple is dedicated, but resembling thecow-headed Isis. These pillars, with the sculptures on oneside finished at the top with a head, may have suggested theOsiride pillars.The grottoes are tombs in the sandstone mountain, of thetime of the eighteenth dynasty, which began some thirty- fivehundred years ago. Two of them have remarkable sculptures,the coloring of which is still fresh; and I wish to speak ofthem a little, because it is from them (and some of the samecharacter) that Egyptologists have largely reconstructed forus the common life of the ancient Egyptians. Although theDOMESTIC LIFE IN ANCIENT EGYPT. 351work is somewhat rude, it has a certain veracity of executionwhich is pleasing.We assume this tomb to have been that of a man of wealth.This is the ante-chamber; the mummy was deposited in a pitlet into a small excavation in the rear. On one wall aresculptured agricultural scenes: plowing, sowing, reapingwheat and pulling doora (the color indicates the kind ofgrain), hatcheling the latter, while oxen are treading out thewheat, and the song of the threshers encouraging the oxenis written in hieroglyphics above; the winnowing and storingof the grain; in a line under these, the various domesticanimals of the deceased are brought forward to a scribe, whoenumerates them and notes the numbers on a roll of papyrus.There are river-scenes:-grain is loaded into freight-boats;pleasure-dahabeëhs are on the stream, gaily painted, with onesquare sail amidship, rowers along the sides, and windows inthe cabin; one has a horse and chariot on board, the reïsstands at the bow, the overseer, kurbash in hand, is threatening the crew, a sailor is falling overboard. Men are gatheringgrapes, and treading out the wine with their feet; others arecatching fish and birds in nets, and dressing and curing them.At the end of this wall, offerings are made to Osiris. In onecompartment a man is seated holding a boy on his lap.On the opposite wall are two large figures, supposed to bethe occupant of the tomb and his wife, seated on a fauteuil;men and women, in two separate lines, facing the largefigures, are seated, one leg bent under them, each smelling alotus flower. In the rear, men are killing and cutting upanimals as if preparing for a feast. To the leg of the fauteuil is tied a monkey; and Mr. Wilkinson says that it wascustomary at entertainments for the hosts to have a “ favoritemonkey" tied to the leg of the chair. Notwithstanding theappearance of the monkey here in that position, I do notsuppose that he would say that an ordinary entertainmentis represented here. For, although there are preparations fora feast, there is a priest standing between the friends and theprincipal personages, making offerings, and the monkey may352 A REASON FOR present in his character of emblem of Thoth. It seems tobe a funeral and not a festive representation . The picturesapparently tell the story of the life of the deceased and hisoccupations, and represent the mourning at his tomb. Inother grottoes, where the married pair are seated as here, thearm ofthe woman on the shoulder of the man, and the “favorite monkey" tied to the chair, friends are present in theact of mourning, throwing dust on their heads, and accompanied by musicians; and the mummy is drawn on a sledgeto the tomb, a priest standing on the front, and a personpouring oil on the ground that the runners may slip easily.The setting sun strikes into these chambers, so carefullyprepared for people of rank of whom not a pinch of dust nowremains, and lights them up with a certain cheer and hope.We cannot make anything melancholy out of a tomb so highand with such a lovely prospect from its front door. Theformer occupants are unknown, but not more unknown thanthe peasants we see on the fields below, still at the tasks depictedin these sculptures. Thirty-five hundred years is not so verylong ago! Slowly we pick our way down the hill and regainour floating home; and, bidding farewell forever to El Kab,drift down in the twilight. In the morning we are at Esneh.In Esneh the sound of the grinding is never low. Thetown is full of primitive ox-power mills in which the wheat isground, and there are always dahabeëhs staying here for thecrew to bake their bread. Having already had one day ofEsneh we are tired of it, for it is exactly like all otherEgyptian towns of its size: we know all the possible combinations of mud-hovels, crooked lanes, stifling dust, nakedness,squalor. We are so accustomed to picking our way in thestreet amid women and children sprawling in the dirt, thatthe scene has lost its strangeness; it is even difficult toremember that in other countries women usually keep indoors and sit on chairs.The town is not without liveliness It is half Copt, andbeggars demand backsheesh on the ground that they areChristians, and have a common interest with us. We wanderNAUGIITY ATTRACTIONS. 353through the bazaars where there is nothing to buy and intothe market- place, always the most interesting study in anunknown city. The same wheat lies on the ground in heaps;the same roots and short stalks of the doora are tied inbundles and sold for fuel, and cakes of dried manure for thelike use; people are lying about in the sun in all picturesqueattitudes, some curled up and some on their backs fast asleep;more are squating before little heaps of corn or beans or somewilted " greens, " or dried tobacco-leaves and pipe- bowls;children swarm and tumble about everywhere; donkeys andcamels pick their way through the groups.I spent half an hour in teaching a handsome young Copthow to pronounce English words in his Arabic- Englishprimer. He was very eager to learn and very grateful forassistance. We had a large and admiring crowd about us,who laughed at every successful and still more at everyunsuccessful attempt on the part of the pupil, and repeatedthe English words themselves when they could catch thesound, an exceedingly good- natured lot ofidlers. We foundthe people altogether pleasant, some in the ingrained habit ofbegging, quick to take a joke and easily excited. While I hadmy scholar, a fantasia of music on two tambourines wasperformed for the amusem*nt of my comrade, which had also itsring ofspectators watching the effect of the monotonous thumping, upon the grave howadji; he was seated upon the mastabahof a shop, with all formality, and enjoyed all the honors of theentertainment, as was proper, since he bore the entire expensealone, —about five cents.The coffee-shops of Esneh are many, some respectable andothers decidedly otherwise. The former are the least attractive,being merely long and dingy mud-apartments, in which thevisitors usually sit on the floor and play at draughts. Thecoffee-houses near the river have porticoes and pleasant terracesin front, and look not unlike some picturesque Swiss or Italianwine-shops. The attraction there seems to be the Ghawazeesor dancing-girls, of whom there is a large colony here, thecolony consisting of a tribe. All the family act as procurers23354 DEADLY WIIIFFS.for the young women, who are usually married. Their dress isan extraordinary combination of stripes and colors, red andyellow being favorites, which harmonize well with their dark,often black, skins, and eyes heavily shaded with kohl. Isuppose it must be admitted, in spite of their total want of anywomanly charm of modesty, that they are the finest- lookingwomen in Egypt, though many of them are ugly; they certainlyare of a different type from the Egyptians, though not of a puretype; they boast that they have preserved themselves withoutadmixture with other peoples or tribes from a very remoteperiod; one thing is certain, their profession is as old as historyand their antiquity may entitle them to be considered anaristocracy of vice. They say that their race is allied in originto that of the people called gypsies, with whom many of theircustoms are common. The men are tinkers, blacksmiths, ormusicians, and the women are the ruling element in the band;the husband is subject to the wife. But whatever their origin, itis admitted that their dance is the same as that with which thedancing-women amused the Pharaohs, the same that the Phonicians carried to Gades and which Juvenal describes, and,Mr. Lane thinks, the same by which the daughter of Herodiasdanced off the head of John the Baptist. Modified here andthere, it is the immemorial dance of the Orient.Esneh has other attractions for the sailors of the Nile; thereare the mahsheshehs, or shops where hasheesh is smoked; anattendant brings the " hubble-bubble " to the guests who arelolling on the mastabah; they inhale their portion, and then liedown in a stupor, which is at every experiment one removenearer idiocy.Still drifting, giving us an opportunity to be on shore all themorning. We visit the sugar establishment at Mutáneh, andwalk along the high bank under the shade of the acacias for acouple of miles below it. Nothing could be lovelier in thissparkling morning-the silver-grey range of mountains acrossthe river and the level smiling land on our left. This is one ofthe Viceroy's possessions, bought of one of his relations at aprice fixed by his highness. There are ten thousand acres ofUNENDING leisure. 355arable land, of which some fifteen hundred is in sugar-cane, andthe rest in grain. The whole is watered by a steam-pump,which sends a vast stream of water inland, giving life to thebroad fields and the extensive groves, as well as to a village theminaret of which we can see. It is a noble estate. Near thefactory are a palace and garden, somewhat in decay, as is usualin this country, but able to offer us roses and lemons.The works are large, modern, with improved machinery forcrushing and boiling, and apparently well managed; there issaid to be one of the sixteen sugar-factories of the Khedivewhich pays expenses; perhaps this is the one. A great quantity of rum is distilled from the refuse. The vast field in therear, enclosed by a whitewashed wall, presented a lively appearance, with camels bringing in the cane and unloading it andarranging it upon the endless trough for the crushers. In thefactory, the workmen wear little clothing and are driven to theirtask; all the overseers march among them kurbash in hand; thesight of the black fellows treading about in the crystallizedsugar, while putting it up in sacks, would decide a fastidiousperson to take her tea unsweetened.The next morning we pass Erment without calling, satisfiedto take the word of others that you may see there a portrait ofCleopatra; and by noon come to our old mooring- place atLuxor, and add ours to the painted dahabeëehs lounging in thisidle and gay resort.During the day we enjoyed only one novel sensation. We ateofthe ripe fruit of the dôm- palm. It tastes and smells like stalegingerbread, made of sawdust instead of flour.I do not know how long one could stay contentedly at Thebes;certainly a winter, if only to breathe the inspiring air, to bask inthe sun, to gaze, never sated, upon plains and soft mountainswhich climate and association clothe with hues of beauty andromance, to yield for once to a leisure that is here rebuked byno person and by no urgency ofaffairs; perhaps for years, if oneseriously attempted a study of antiquities.The habit of leisure is at least two thousand years old here;at any rate, we fell into it without the least desire to resist its356 BOGUS RELICS.spell. This is one of the eddies of the world in which themodern hurry is unfelt. If it were not for the coughing steamboats and the occasional glimpse one has of a whisking file ofCook's tourists, Thebes would be entirely serene, and an admirable place of retirement.It has a reputation, however, for a dubious sort of industry.All along the river from Geezeh to Assouan, whenever a spuriousscarabæus or a bogus image turned up, we would hear, " Yes,make ' em in Luxor. " As we drew near to this great mart ofantiquities, the specification became more personal-" Can't telledzacly whether that make by Mr. Smith or by that Moslem inGoorneh, over the other side. "The person named is well known to all Nile voyagers asAntiquity Smith, and he has, though I cannot say that he enjoys,the reputation hinted at above. How much of it is due to theenmity of rival dealers in relics of the dead, I do not know;but it must be evident to anyone that the very clever forgeriesof antiquities, which one sees, could only be produced by skillfuland practiced workmen. We had some curiosity to see a manwho has made the American name so familiar the length of theNile, for Mr. Smith is a citizen of the United States. Forseventeen years he has been a voluntary exile here, and mostof the time the only foreigner resident in the place; long enoughto give him a good title to the occupation of any grotto he maychoose.In appearence Mr. Smith is somewhat like a superannuatedagent of the tract society, of the long, thin, shrewd, learnedYankee type. Few men have enjoyed his advantages for sharpening the wits. Born in Connecticut, reared in New Jersey,trained for seventeen years among the Arabs and antiquitymongers of this region, the sharpest in the Orient, he ought tohave not only the learning attached to the best-wrapped mummy,but to be able to read the hieroglyphics on the most inscrutable human face among the living.Mr. Smith lives on the outskirts of the village, in a house,surrounded by a garden, which is a kind of museum of theproperty, not to say the bones, of the early Egyptians."ANTIQUITY SMITH.” 357"You seem to be retired from society here Mr. Smith, " weventured to say."Yes, for eight months of the year, I see nobody, literallynobody. It is only during the winter that strangers come here. ""Isn't it lonesome? ""A little, but you get used to it.""What do you do during the hottest months? "66 As near nothing as possible. ""How hot is it? "" Sometimes the thermometer goes to 120° Fahrenheit. Itstays a long time at 100° . The worst of it is that the nights arealmost as hot as the days."" How do you exist? "" I keep very quiet, don't write, don't read anything thatrequires the least thought. Seldom go out, never in the daytime. In the early morning I sit a while on the verandah, andabout ten o'clock get into a big bath-tub, which I have on theground-floor, and stay in it nearly all day, reading some verymild novel, and smoking the weakest tobacco. In the eveningI find it rather cooler outside the house than in. A white mancan't do anything here in the summer."I did not say it to Mr. Smith, but I should scarcely like to livein a country where one is obliged to be in water half the year,like a pelican. We can have, however, from his experiencesome idea what this basin must have been in summer, when itsarea was a crowded city, upon which the sun, reverberated fromthe incandescent limestone hills, beat in unceasing fervor.



I SHOULD like to give you a conception, however faint, ofthe Tombs ofthe ancient Egyptians, for in them is to be foundthe innermost secret of the character, the belief, the immortal expectation of that accomplished and wise people. A barrendescription of these places of sepulchre would be of smallservice to you, for the key would be wanting, and you would besimply confused by a mass of details and measurements, whichconvey no definite idea to a person who does not see them withhis own eyes. I should not indeed be warranted in attemptingto say anything about these great Tombs at Thebes, which areso completely described in many learned volumes, did I nothave the hope that some readers, who have never had access tothe works referred to will be glad to know something ofthat whichmost engaged the educated Egyptian mind.No doubt the most obvious and immediate interest of theTombs of old Egypt, is in the sculptures that depict so minutelythe life of the people, represent all their occupations and associations, are, in fact, their domestic and social history written instone. But it is not of this that I wish to speak here; I want towrite a word upon the tombs and what they contain, in theirrelation to the future life.A study of the tombs of the different epochs, chronologicallypursued, would show, I think, pretty accurately, the growth oftheEgyptian theology, its development, or rather its departure fromthe primitive revelation of one God, into the monstrosities of itsfinal mixture of coarse polytheistic idolatry and the vaguest358ANCIENT EGYPTIAN LITERATURE. 359pantheism. These two extremes are represented by the beautifulplaces of sepulchre of the fourth and fifth dynasties at Geezehand Memphis, in which all the sculptures relate to the life of thedeceased and no deities are represented; and the tombs ofthe twenty-fourth dynasty at Thebes which are so largely coveredwith the gods and symbols of a religion become wholly fantastic.It was in the twenty- sixth dynasty (just before the conquest ofEgypt by the Persians) that the Funeral Ritual received its finalrevision and additions—the sacred chart of the dead which hadgrown, paragraph by paragraph, and chapter by chapter, fromits brief and simple form in the earliest times.The Egyptians had a considerable, and also a rich literature,judging by the specimens of it preserved and by the value setupon it by classical writers; in which no department of writingwas unrepresented. The works which would seem of most valueto the Greeks were doubtless those on agriculture, astronomy, andgeometry; the Egyptians wrote also on medicine, but the science.was empirical then as it is now. They had an enormous bulkof historical literature, both in verse and prose, probably as semifabulous and voluminous as the thousand great volumes ofChinese history. They did not lack, either, in the department ofbelles lettres; there were poets, poor devils no doubt who werecompelled to celebrate in grandiose strains achievements they didnot believe; and essayists and letter-writers, graceful, philosophic,humorous. Nor was the field of fiction unoccupied; some oftheir lesser fables and romances have been preserved; they arehowever of a religious character, myths of doctrine, and it is safeto say different from our Sunday- School tales. The story ofCinderella was a religious myth. No one has yet been fortunateenough to find an Egyptian novel, and we may suppose that thequid-nuncs, the critics of Thebes, were all the time calling uponthe writers of that day to make an effort and produce The GreatEgyptian Novel.The most important part, however, of the literature of Egyptwas the religious, and of that we have, in the Ritual or Book ofthe Dead, probably the most valuable portion. It will be necessary to refer to this more at length. A copy of the Funeral360 A MUMMY IN PLEDGE.Ritual, or " The Book of the Manifestation to Light " as it wasentitled, or some portion of it-probably according to the rankor wealth of the deceased, was deposited with every mummy.In this point of view, as this document was supposed to be ofinfinite service, a person's wealth would aid him in the nextworld; but there came a point in the peregrination of every soulwhere absolute democracy was reached, and every man stoodfor judgment on his character. There was a foreshadowing ofthis even in the ceremonies of the burial. When the mummy,after the elapse of the seventy days of mourning, was taken bythe friends to the sacred lake of the nome ( district) , acrosswhich it must be transported in the boat of Charon before itcould be deposited in the tomb, it was subjected to an ordeal.Forty-two judges were assembled on the shore of the lake, andif anyone accused the deceased, and could prove that he led anevil life, he was denied burial. Even kings were subjected tothis trial, and those who had been wicked, in the judgment oftheir people, were refused the honors of sepulchre. Caseswere probably rare where one would dare to accuse even a deadPharaoh.Debts would sometimes keep a man out of his tomb, bothbecause he was wrong in being in debt, and because his tombwas mortgaged. For it was permitted a man to mortgage notonly his family tomb but the mummy of his father, a kind ofmortmain security that could not run away, but a ghastly pledgeto hold. A man's tomb, it would seem, was accounted his chiefpossession; as the one he was longest to use. It was preparedat an expense never squandered on his habitation in life.You may see as many tombs as you like at Thebes, you mayspend weeks underground roaming about in vast chambers orburrowing in zig-zag tunnels, until the upper-world shall seem toyou only a passing show; but you will find little, here or elsewhere, after the Tombs of the Kings, to awaken your keenestinterest; and the exploration of a very few of these will sufficeto satisfy you. We visited these gigantic masoleums twice; itis not an easy trip to them, for they are situated in wild ravinesor gorges that lie beyond the western mountains which circle theTHE DESOLATE WAY TO THE TOMBS. 361plain and ruins of Thebes. They can be reached by a footpathover the crest of the ridge behind Medeenet Haboo; the ancientand usual road to them is up a valley that opens from the north.The first time we tried the footpath, riding over the bloomingvalley and leaving our donkeys at the foot of the ascent. I donot know how high this mountain backbone may be, but it is nota pleasant one to scale. The path winds, but it is steep; thesun blazes on it; every step is in pulverized limestone, that seemsto have been calcined by the intense heat, and rises in irritatingpowder; the mountain- side is white, chalky, glaring, reflectingthe solar rays with blinding brilliancy, and not a breath ofair comes to temper the furnace temperature. On the summithowever there was a delicious breeze, and we stood long lookingover the great basin, upon the temples, the villages, the verdantareas of grain, the patches of desert, all harmonized by thewonderful light, and the purple eastern hills-a view unsurpassed.The descent to the other side was steeper than the ascent, andwound by precipices, on narrow ledges, round sharp turns,through jagged gorges, amid rocks striken with the ashy hue ofdeath, into the bottoms of intersecting ravines, a region scarred,blasted, scorched, a grey Gehenna, more desolate than imagination ever conceived.Another day we rode to it up the valley from the river, somethree miles. It is a winding, narrow valley, little more than thebed of a torrent; but as we advanced windings became shorter,the sides higher, fantastic precipices of limestone frowned on us,and there was evidence of a made road and of rocks cut awayto broaden it. The scene is wilder, more freakishly savage, aswe go on, and knowing that it is a funereal way and that only,and that it leads to graves and to nothing else, our processionimperceptibly took on the sombre character of an expeditionafter death, relieved by I know not what that is droll in theimpishforms of the crags, and the reaction of our natures againstthis unnecessary accumulation of grim desolation. The sunoverhead was like a dish from which poured liquid heat, Icould feel the waves, I thought I could see it running in streamsdown the crumbling ashy slopes; but it was not unendurable,362 THE SECRET OF THE TOMBS.for the air was pure and elastic and we had no sense of weariness;indeed, now and then a puff of desert air suddenly greeted usas we turned a corner. The slender strip of sky seen above thegrey limestone was of astonishing depth and color-a purple,almost like a night sky, but of unimpeachable delicacy.Up this strange road were borne in solemn state, as theauthor of Job may have seen, " the kings and counsellors of theearth, which built desolate places for themselves; " the journey wasa fitting prelude to an entry into the depths of these frightfulhills. It must have been an awful march, awful in its errand,awful in the desolation of the way: and, in the heat of summer,a mummy passing this way might have melted down in his cercueil before he could reach his cool retreat.When we come to the end of the road, we see no tombs.There are paths winding in several directions, round projectingridges and shoulders of powdered rock, but one might passthrough here and not know he was in a cemetery. Above therubbish here and there we see, when they are pointed out, holesin the rock. We climb one of these heaps, and behold theentrance, maybe half-filled up, of one of the great tombs. Thisentrance may have been laid open so as to disclose a portal cutin the face of the rock and a smoothed space in front. Originally the tomb was not only walled up and sealed, but rockswere tumbled down over it, so as to restore that spot in the hillto its natural appearance. The chief object of every tomb wasto conceal the mummy from intrusion forever. All sorts ofmisleading devices were resorted to for this purpose.Twenty-five tombs ( of the nineteenth and twentieth dynasties)have been opened in this locality, but some of them belonged toprinces and other high functionaries; in a valley west of this aretombs of the eighteenth dynasty, and in still another gorge are thetombs of the queens. These tombs all differ in plan, in extent,in decoration; they are alike in not having, as many otherselsewhere have, an exterior chamber where friends could assembleto mourn; you enter all these tombs by passing through aninsignificant opening, by an inclined passage, directly into theheart of the mountain, and there they open into various halls,BUILDING FOR ETERNITY. 363chambers, and grottoes. One of them, that of Sethi I., into whosefurthermost and most splendid halls Belzoni broke his way,extends horizontally four hundred and seventy feet into thehill, and descends to a depth of one hundred and eightyfeet below the opening. The line of direction of the excavation is often changed, and the continuation skillfully masked,so that the explorer may be baffled. You come by severaldescents and passages, through grand chambers and halls, to ahall vast in size and magnificently decorated; here is a pit,here is the granite sarcophagus; here is the fitting resting- placeof the royal mummy. But it never occupied this sarcophagus.Somewhere in this hall is a concealed passage. It was by breaking through a wall of solid masonry in such a room, smoothlystuccoed and elaborately painted with a continuation of thescenes on the side- walls, that Belzoni discovered the magnificent apartment beyond, and at last a chamber that was neverfinished, where one still sees the first draughts of the figures forsculpture on the wall, and gets an idea of the bold freedom ofthe old draughtsmen, in the long, graceful lines, made at a strokeby the Egyptian artists. Were these inner chambers so elaborately concealed, by walls and stucco and painting, after theroyal mummy was somewhere hidden in them? Or was themummy deposited in some obscure lateral pit, and was it thefancy of the king himself merely to make these splendid andhighly decorated inner apartments private?It is not uncommon to find rooms in the tombs unfinished.The excavation of the tomb was began when the king began toreign; it was a work of many years and might happen to be unfinished at his death. He might himself become so enamouredof his enterprise and his ideas might expand in regard to hisrequirements, as those of builders always do, that death wouldfind him still excavating and decorating. I can imagine that ifone thought he were building a house for eternity—or cyclesbeyond human computation, -he would, up to his last moment,desire to add to it new beauties and conveniences. And hemust have had a certain humorous satisfaction in his architectural tricks, for putting posterity on a false scent about hisremains.364 DISTURBING THE DEAD.It would not be in human nature to leave undisturbed tombscontaining so much treasure as was buried with a rich or royalmummy. The Greeks walked through all these sepulchres;they had already been rifled by the Persians; it is not unlikelythat some of them had been ransacked by Egyptians, who couldappreciate jewelry and fine-work in gold as much as we do thatfound by M. Mariette on the cold person of Queen Aah-hotep.This dainty lady might have begun to flatter herself, havingescaped through so many ages of pillage, that danger was over,but she had not counted upon there coming an age of science.It is believed that she was the mother of Amosis, who expelledthe Shepherds, and the wife of Kamés, who long ago went to hiselements. After a repose here at Thebes, not far from thetemple of Koorneh, of about thirty-five hundred years, Scienceone day cried, " Aah-hotep of Drah-Aboo-l -neggah! we wantyou for an Exposition of the industries of all nations at Paris;put on your best things and come forth. "I suppose that there is no one living who would not like to bethe first to break into an Egyptian tomb ( and there are doubtlessstill some undisturbed in this valley) , to look upon its glowingpaintings before the air had impaired a tint, and to discover asweet and sleeping princess, simply encrusted in gems, andcunning work in gold, of priceless value-in order that he mightadd something to our knowledge of ancient art!But the government prohibits all excavations by privatepersons. You are permitted, indeed, to go to the common pitsand carry off an armful of mummies, if you like; but there is nopleasure in the disturbance of this sort of mummy; he mayperhaps be a late Roman; he has no history, no real antiquity,and probably not a scarabæus of any value about him.When we pass out of the glare of the sun and descend theincline down which the mummy went, we feel as if we hadbegun his awful journey. On the walls are sculptured theceremonies and liturgies of the dead, the grotesque monsters ofthe under-world, which will meet him and assail him on hispilgrimage, the deities friendly and unfriendly, the tremendousscenes of cycles of transmigration. Other sculptures there are,THE FUNERAL RITUAL. 365to be sure, and in some tombs these latter predominate, inwhich astronomy, agriculture, and domestic life are depicted.In one chamber are exhibited trades, in another the kitchen, inanother arms, in another the gay boats and navigation of theNile, in another all the vanities of elegant house-furniture.But all these only emphasize the fact that we are passing intoanother world, and one of the grimmest realities. We come atlength, whatever other wonders or beauties may detain us, tothe king, the royal mummy, in the presence of the deities,standing before Osiris, Athor, Phtah, Isis, Horus, Anubis, andNofre-Atmoo.Somewhere in this vast and dark mausoleum the mummy hasbeen deposited; he has with him the roll of the FuneralRitual; the sacred scarabæus is on his breast; in one chamber bread and wine are set out; his bearers withdraw, the tombis closed, sealed, all trace of its entrance effaced. The mummybegins his pilgrimage.The Ritual describes all the series of pilgrimages of thesoul in the lower-world; it contains the hymns, prayers, andformula for all funeral ceremonies and the worship of the dead;it embodies the philosophy and religion of Egypt; the basis ofit is the immortality of the soul, that is of the souls of thejustified, but a clear notion of the soul's personality apart fromthe body it does not give.The book opens with a grand. dialogue, at the moment ofdeath, in which the deceased, invoking the god of the lowerworld, asks entrance to his domain; a chorus of glorified soulsinterposes for him; the priest implores the divine clemency;Osiris responds, granting permission, and the soul enters KarNeter, the land of the dead; and then renews his invocations.Upon his entry he is dazzled by the splendor of the sun (whichis Osiris) in this subterranean region, and sings to it a magnificent hymn.The second part traces the journeys of the soul. Withoutknowledge, he would fail, and finally be rejected at the tribunal.

  • Lenormant's Epitome.

366 Before the JudgmenT-SEAT.Knowledge is in Egyptian sbo, that is, " food in plenty "; knowledge and food are identified in the Ritual; "the knowledge ofreligious truths is the mysterious nourishment that the soulmust carry with it to sustain it in its journeys and trials." Thisnecessary preliminary knowledge is found in the statement ofthe Egyptian faith in the Ritual; other information is givenhim from time to time on his journey. But although his bodyis wrapped up, and his soul instructed, he cannot move, he hasnot the use of his limbs; and he prays to be restored to hisfaculties that he may be able to walk, speak, eat, fight; theprayer granted, he holds his scarabæus over his head, as apassport, and enters Hades.His way is at once beset by formidable obstacles; monsters,servants of Typhon, assail him; slimy reptiles, crocodiles,serpents seek to devour him; he begins a series of desperatecombats, in which the hero and his enemies hurl long andinsulting speeches at each other. Out of these combats hecomes victorious, and sings songs of triumph; and after rest andrefreshment from the Tree of Life, given him by the goddess Nu,he begins a dialogue with the personification of the divineLight, who instructs him, explaining the sublime mysteries ofnature. Guided by this new Light, he advances, and entersinto a series of transformations, identifying himself with thenoblest divine symbols: he becomes a hawk, an angel, a lotus,the god Ptah, a heron, etc.Up to this time the deceased has been only a shade, aneidolon, the simulacrum of the appearance of his body. He nowtakes his body, which is needed for the rest of the journey; itwas necessary therefore that it should be perfectly preserved bythe embalming process. He goes on to new trials and dangers,to new knowledge, to severer examinations of his competence;he shuns wiles and delusions; he sails down a subterraneanriver and comes to the Elysian Fields, in fact, to a reproductionof Egypt with its camels and its industries, when the soulengages in agriculture, sowing and reaping divine fruit for thebread of knowledge which he needs now more than ever.At length he comes to the last and severest trial, to theWEIGHED IN THE BALANCE. 367judgment-hall where Osiris awaits him, seated on his throne,accompanied by the forty-two assessors of the dead. Here hisknowledge is put to the test; here he must give an account ofhis whole life. He goes on to justify himself by declaring atfirst, negatively, the crimes that he has not committed. " I havenot blasphemed, " he says in the Ritual; " I have not stolen; Ihave not smitten men privily; I have not treated any personwith cruelty; I have not stirred up trouble; I have not beenidle; I have not been intoxicated; I have not made unjustcommandmants; I have shown no improper curiosity; I havenot allowed my mouth to tell secrets; I have not wounded anyone; I have not put anyone in fear; I have not slandered anyone; I have not let envy gnaw my heart; I have spoken evilneither of the king nor of my father; I have not falsely accusedanyone; I have not withheld milk from the mouths of sucklings;I have not practiced any shameful crime; I have not calumniated a slave to his master. "The deceased then speaks of the good he has done in hislifetime; and the positive declarations rise to a higher moralitythan the negative; among them is this wonderful sentence: -"I have given food to the hungry, drink to the thirsty, and clothesto the naked."The heart of the deceased, who is now called Osiris, is thenweighed in the balance against " truth," and (if he is just) isnot found wanting; the forty-two assessors decide that hisknowledge is sufficient, the god Osiris gives sentence ofjustification, Thoth (the Hermes of the Greeks, the conductorof souls, the scribe of Osiris, and also the personification ofliterature or letters) records it, and the soul enters into bliss.In a chamber at Dayr el Medeeneh you may see thisjudgment-scene. Osiris is seated on his throne waiting theintroduction of souls into Amenti; the child Harpocrates,with his finger on his lip, sits upon his crook; behind are theforty-two assessors. The deceased humbly approaches; Thothpresents his good deeds written upon papyrus; they areweighed in the balance against an ostrich-feather, the symbolof truth; on the beam sits a monkey, the emblem of Thoth.368 THE HABITATION OF THE DEAD.The same conceit of weighing the soul in judgment- sceneswas common to the medieval church; it is very quaintlyrepresented in a fresco in the porch of the church of St.Lawrence at Rome.Sometimes the balance tipped the wrong way; in the tombof Rameses VI. is sculptured a wicked soul, unjustified,retiring from the presence of Osiris in the ignoble form of apig.The justified soul retired into bliss. What was this bliss?The third part of the Ritual is obscure. The deceased isOsiris, identified with the sun, traversing with him, and ashim, the various houses of heaven; afterwards he seems topass into an identification with all the deities of the pantheon.This is a poetical flight. The justified soul was absorbedinto the intelligence from which it emanated. For thewicked, there was annihilation; they were destroyed, decapitated by the evil powers. In these tombs you will seepictures of beheadings at the block, of dismembered bodies.It would seem that in some cases the souls of the wickedreturned to the earth and entered unclean animals. Wealways had a suspicion, a mere idle fancy, that a chameleon,which we had on our boat, which had a knowing and wickedeye, had been somebody.The visitor's first astonishment here is to find such vast andrich tombs, underground temples in fact, in a region sounutterably desolate, remote from men, to be reached only bya painful pilgrimage. He is bewildered by the variety andbeauty of the decorations, the grace and freedom of art, theminute finish of birds and flowers, the immortal lovelinessof faces here and there; and he cannot understand that allthis was not made for exhibition, that it was never intendedto be seen, that it was not seen except by the workmen andthe funeral attendants, and that it was then sealed away fromhuman eyes forever. Think of the years of labor expended,the treasure lavished in all this gorgeous creation, which wasnot for men to see! Has human nature changed? Expensivemonuments and mausoleums are built now as they have beenILLUMINATED. 369in all the Christian era; but they are never concealed fromthe public view. I cannot account for these extraordinaryexcavations, not even for one at the Assaseef, which extendsover an acre and a quarter of ground, upon an ostentation ofwealth, for they were all closed from inspection, and the veryentrances masked. The builders must have believed in themysteries of the under-world, or they would not have expended so much in enduring representations of them; they musthave believed also that the soul had need of such a royalabode. Did they have the thought that money lavished inthis pious labor would benefit the soul, as much as now-adays legacies bequeathed to missions and charities?On our second visit to these tombs we noticed many detailsthat had escaped us before. I found sculptured a cross ofequal arms, three or four inches long, among other sacredsymbols. We were struck by the peculiar whiteness of thelight, the sort of chalkiness of the sunshine as we saw itfalling across the entrance of a tomb from which we werecoming, and by the lightness of the shadows. We illuminated some of the interiors, lighting up the vast sculpturedand painted halls and corniced chambers, to get the toutensemble of colors and figures. The colors came out withstartling vividness on the stuccoed, white walls, and it neededno imagination, amidst these awful and bizarre images andfantastic scenes, to feel that we were in a real under- world.And all this was created for darkness!But these chambers could neither have been cut nor decorated without light, and bright light. The effect of the richceiling and sides could not have been obtained without stronglight. I believe that these rooms, as well as the dark anddecorated chambers in the temples, must have been brilliantlyilluminated on occasion; the one at the imposing funeralceremonies, the other at the temple services. What light wasused? The sculptures give us no information. But the lightmust have been not only a very brilliant but a pure flame,for these colors were fresh and unsullied when the tombswere opened. However these chambers were lighted, some 24370 ACCOMMODATIONS for the MUMMY.illuminating substance was used that produced no smoke, norformed any gas that could soil the whiteness of the paintedlotus.In one ofthese brilliant apartments, which is finished witha carved and painted cornice, and would serve for a drawingroom with the addition of some furniture, we almost had afeeling of comfort and domesticity-as long as the illumination lasted. When that flashed out, and we were left in thatthick darkness of the grave which one can feel gatheringitself in folds about him, and which the twinkling candles inour hands punctured but did not scatter, and we groped ourway, able to see only a step ahead and to examine only a yardsquare of wall at a time, there was something terrible in thissubterranean seclusion . And yet, this tomb was intended asthe place of abode of the deceased owner during the longages before soul and body, united, should be received intobliss; here were buried with him no doubt some portions ofhis property, at least jewels and personal ornaments of value;here were pictured his possessions and his occupations whileon earth; here were his gods, visibly cut in stone; here werespread out, in various symbols and condensed writing, theprecepts of profound wisdom and the liturgies of the bookof the dead. If at any time he could have awakened (asno doubt he supposed he should), and got rid of his heavygranite sarcophagus (if his body ever lay in it) and removedthe myrrh and pitch from his person, he would have foundhimself in a most spacious and gay mansion, of which theonly needs were food, light, and air.While remembering, however, the grotesque conceptionthe Egyptians had of the next world, it seems to me that thedecorators of these tombs often let their imaginations runriot, and that not every fantastic device has a deep signification. Take the elongated figures on the ceiling, stretchingfifty feet across, the legs bent down one side and the head theother; or such a picture as this:-a sacred boat having acrocodile on the deck, on the back of the crocodile a humanhead, out of the head a long stick protruding which bears onTHE PHARAOH OF THE EXODUS.371its end the crown of lower Egypt; or this conceit: —a smallboat ascending a cataract, bearing a huge beetle (scarabæus)having a ram's head, and sitting on each side of it a bird witha human head. I think much of this work is pure fancy.In these tombs the snake plays a great part, the snakepurely, coiled or extended, carried in processions his lengthborne on the shoulders of scores of priests, crawling alongthe walls in hideous convolutions; and, again, the snake withtwo, three, and four heads, with two and six feet; the snakewith wings; the snake coiled about the statues of the gods,about the images of the mummies, and in short everywhere.The snake is the most conspicuous figure.The monkey is also numerous, and always pleasing; Ithink he is the comic element of hell, though perhaps gravelymeant. He squats about the lower-world ofthe heathen, andgives it an almost cheerful and debonnair aspect. It is certainlyrefreshing to meet his self-possessed, grave, and yet friendlyface amid all the serpents, crocodiles, hybrids, and chimericalmonsters ofthe Egyptian under- world.Conspicuous in ceremonies represented in the tombs and inthe temples is the sacred boat or ark, reminding one always,in its form and use and the sacredness attached to it, of theJewish Ark of the Covenant. The arks contain the sacredemblems, and sometimes the beetle of the sun, overshadowedby the wings of the goddess of Thmei or Truth, which suggestthe cherubim of the Jews. Mr. Wilkinson notices the fact,also, that Thmei, the name of the goddess who was worshipped under the double character of Truth and Justice, is theorigin of the Hebrew Thummim-a word implying " truth ";this Thummim (a symbol perfectly comprehensible now thatwe know its origin) which was worn only by the high priestof the Jews, was, like the Egyptian figure, which the archjudge put on when he sat at the trial of a case, studded withprecious stones of various colors.Before we left the valley we entered the tomb of Menephtah(or Merenphtah) , and I broke off a bit of crumbling limestonefrom the inner cave as a memento of the Pharaoh of the372 A BABY CHARON.66Exodus. I used to suppose that this Pharaoh was drownedin the Red Sea; but he could not have been if he was buriedhere; and here certainly is his tomb. It is the opinion ofscholars that Menephtah long survived the Exodus. Thereis nothing to conflict with this in the Biblical descriptionof the disaster to the Egyptians. It says that all Pharaoh'shost was drowned, but it does not say that the king wasdrowned; if he had been, so important a fact, it is likely wouldhave been emphasized. Joseph came into Egypt duringthe reign of one of the usurping Shepherd Kings, Apepiprobably. Their seat of empire was at Tanis, where theirtombs have been discovered. The Israelites were settled inthat part ofthe Delta. After some generations the Shepherdswere expelled, and the ancient Egyptian race of kings wasreinstated in the dominion of all Egypt. This is probablythe meaning of the passage, now there arose up a new kingover Egypt, which knew not Joseph. " The narrative of theExodus seems to require that the Pharaoh should be atMemphis. The kings of the nineteenth dynasty, to whichMenephtah belonged, had the seat oftheir empire at Thebes;he alone of that dynasty established his court at Memphis.But it was natural that he should build his tomb at Thebes.We went again and again to the temples on the west sideand to the tombs there. I never wearied of the fresh morningride across the green plain, saluting the battered Colossi aswe passed under them, and galloping (don't, please, rememberthat we were mounted on donkeys) out upon the desert. Notall the crowd of loping Arabs with glittering eyes and lyingtongues, who attended us, offering their dead merchandise,could put me out of humor. Besides, there were alwaysslender, pretty, and cheerful little girls running beside us withtheir water-koollehs. And may I never forget the baby Charon on the vile ferry-boat that sets us over one of the narrowstreams. He is the cunningest specimen of a boy in Africa.His small brothers pole the boat, but he is steersman, andstands aft pushing about the tiller, which is level with hishead. He is a mere baby as to stature, and is in fact onlyBATS! 373four years old, but he is a perfect beauty, even to the ivoryteeth which his engaging smile discloses. And such selfpossession and self- respect. He is a man of business, andminds his helm, " the dear little scrap, " say the ladies. Whenwe give him some evidently unexpected coppers, his eyes andwhole face beam with pleasure, and in the sweetest voice hesays, Ket'ther kháyrak, keteér ( “ Thank you very much indeed ").I yield myself to, but cannot account for the fascination ofthis vast field of desolation, this waste of crumbled limestone,gouged into ravines and hills, honeycombed with tombs andmummy-pits, strewn with the bones of ancient temples, brightened by the glow of sunshine on elegant colonnades andsculptured walls, saddened by the mud-hovels of the fellaheen.The dust is abundant, and the glare of the sun reflected fromthe high, white precipices behind is something unendurable.Ofthe tombs of the Assaseef, we went far into none, exceptthat of the priest Petamunoph, the one which occupies, withits many chambers and passages, an acre and a quarter ofunderground. It was beautifully carved and painted throughout, but the inscriptions are mostly illegible now, and sofouled by bats as to be uninteresting. Our guide said truly,"bats not too much good for ' scriptions. " In truth, the placesmells horribly of bats, —an odor that will come back to youwith sickening freshness days after, and a strong stomach isrequired for the exploration.Even the chambers of some of the temples here were used inlater times as receptacles for mummies. The novel and most interesting temple of Dayr el Bahree did not escape this indignity.It was built by Amun-noo-het, or Hatasoo as we more familiarlycall her, and like everything else that this spirited woman did itbears the stamp of originality and genius. The structure risesup the side of the mountain in terraces, temple above temple,and is of a most graceful architecture; its varied and brilliantsculptures must be referred to a good period of art. Walls thathave recently been laid bare shine with extraordinary vividnessof color. The last chambers in the rock are entered by archeddoorways, but the arch is in appearance, not in principle. Its374 UNPLEASANT EXPLORATIONS.structure is peculiar. Square stones were laid up on each side,the one above lapping over the one beneath until the last twomet at the top; the interior corners were then cut away, leavinga perfect round arch; but there is no lateral support or keystone.In these interior rooms were depths on depths of mummywrappings and bones, and a sickening odor of dissolution.There are no tombs better known than those of Sheykh elKoorneh, for it is in them that so much was discovered revealing the private life, the trades, the varied pursuits of theEgyptians. We entered those called the most interesting, butthey are so smoked, and the paintings are so defaced, that wehad small satisfaction in them. Some of them are full ofmummy-cloths and skeletons, and smell of mortality to thatdegree that it needs all the wind of the desert to take the scentof death out of our nostrils.All this plain and its mounds and hills are dug over and pawedout for remnants of the dead, scarabæi, beads, images, trinketssacred and profane. It is the custom of some travelers todescend into the horrible and common mummy-pits, treadingabout among the dead, and bring up in their arms the body ofsome man, or some woman, who may have been, for aught thetraveler knows, not a respectable,person. I confess to an uncontrollable aversion to all of them, however well preserved they are.The present generation here (I was daily beset by an Arab whowanted always to sell me an arm or a foot, from whose eager, glittering eyes I seemed to see a ghoul looking out, ) lives by plundering the dead. A singular comment upon our age and uponthe futile hope of security for the body after death, even in thestrongest house of rock.Old Petamunoph, with whom be peace, builded better than heknew; he excavated a vast hotel for bats. Perhaps he changedinto bats himself in the course of his transmigrations, and in thisstate is only able to see dimly, as bats do, and to comprehendonly partially, as an old Egyptian might, our modern civilization.



SOCIAL life at Thebes, in the season, is subject to peculiarSOCIAL conditions. For one thing, you suspect a commercialelement in it. Back of all the politeness of native consulsand resident effendis, you see spread out a collection of antiques,veritable belongings of the ancient Egyptians, the furniture oftheir tombs, the ornaments they wore when they began theirlast and most solemn journey, the very scarabæus, cut on the backin the likeness of the mysterious eye of Osiris, which themummy held over his head when he entered the ominouslysilent land of Kar- Neter, the intaglio seal which he always usedfor his signature, the " charms " that he wore at his guard- chain,the necklaces of his wife, the rings and bracelets of his daughter.These are very precious things, but you may have them- suchis the softening influence of friendship-for a trifle of coined gold,a mere trifle, considering their value and the impossibility ofreplacing them. What are two, five, even ten pounds for agenuine bronze figure of Isis, for a sacred cat, for a bit of stone,wrought four thousand years ago by an artist into the likenessof the immortal beetle, carved exquisitely with the name of thePharaoh of that epoch, a bit of stone that some Egyptian wore athis chain during his life and which was laid upon his breast whenhe was wrapped up for eternity! Here in Thebes, where themost important personage is the mummy and the Egyptian pastis the only real and marketable article, there comes to be anextraordinary value attached to these trinkets of mortality. Butwhen the traveler gets away, out of this charmed circle of375376 SOCIAL FESTIVITIES.enthusiasm for antiquity, away from this fictitious market in sentiment, among the cold people of the world who know notJoseph, and only half believe in Potiphar, and think the littleblue images of Osiris ugly, and the mummy-beads trash, andwho never heard of the scarabæus, when, I say, he comes withhis load ofantiques into this air of scepticism, he finds that he hasinvested in a property no longer generally current, objects ofvertu for which Egypt is actually the best market. And if hefinds, as he may, that a good part of his purchases are onlycounterfeits of the antique, manufactured and doctored to givethem an appearance of age, he experiences a sinking of the heartmingled with a lively admiration of the adroitness of the smoothand courtly Arabs of Luxor.Social life is also peculiar in the absence of the sex that isthought to add a charm to it in other parts of the world. Wereceive visits ofceremony or of friendship from the chief citizensof the village, we entertain them at dinner, but they are neveraccompanied by their wives or daughters; we call at their housesand are fêted in turn, but the light of the harem never appears.Dahabeëhs of all nations are arriving and departing, there arealways several moored before the town, some of them are certainto have lovely passengers, and the polite Arabs are not insensibleto the charm of their society: there is much visiting constantlyon the boats; but when it is returned at the houses ofthe natives,at an evening entertainment, the only female society offered isthat ofthe dancing-girls.Of course, when there is so much lingual difficulty in intercourse, the demonstrations of civility must be mainly overt, andin fact they are mostly illuminations and " fantasies. " Almostevery boat once in the course of its stay, and usually upon somenatal day or in honor of some arrival, will be beautifully illuminated and display fireworks. No sight is prettier than a dahabeëhstrung along its decks and along its masts and yards with manycolored lanterns. The people of Luxor respond with illuminations in the houses, to which they add barbarous music and thekicking and posturing of the Ghawazees. In this consists thegaiety ofthe Luxor season.WE VISIT THE NATIVE CONsul. 377Perhaps we reached the high-water mark of this gaiety in anentertainment given us by Ali Moorad Effendi, the Americanconsular agent, in return for a dinner on the dahabeëh. Ali isof good Bedawee blood; and has relations at Karnak enough tofill an opera- house; we esteemed him one ofthe most trustworthyArabs in the country, and he takes great pains and pleasure inperforming all the duties of his post, which are principally civilities to American travelers. The entertainment consisted of adinner and a ‘ fantasia. ' It was understood that it was to be adinner in Arab style.We go at sunset when all the broad surface of the Nile is likean opal in the reflected light. The consul's house is near thebank of the river, and is built against the hill so that we climbtwo or three narrow stairways before we get to the top of it .The landing- places of the stairways are terraces overlooking theriver; and the word terrace has such a grand air that it isimpossible to describe this house without making it appear betterthan it is. The consul comes down to the bank to receive us;we scramble up its crumbling face. We ascend a stairway tothe long consular reception-room, where we sit for half an hour,during which coffee is served and we get the last of the glowingsunset from the windows.We are then taken across a little terrace, up another flight ofsteps, to the main house, which is seen to consist of a broad hallwith small rooms on each side. No other members of theconsul's family appear, and, regarding Arab etiquette , we makeno inquiry for them. We could not commit a greater breachof good-breeding than to ask after the health of any membersof the harem. Into one of the little rooms we are shownfor dinner. It is very small, only large enough to contain adivan and a round table capable of seating eight persons. Theonly ornaments of the room are an American flag, and a handmirror hung too high for anyone to see herself in it. The roundtable is of metal, hammered out and turned at the edge,—alittle barrier that prevents anything rolling off. At each placeare a napkin and a piece of bread-no plate or knives or forks.Deference is so far paid to European prejudice that we sit in378 FINGER-FEEDING: AN ORIENTAL DINNER.chairs, but I confess that when I am to eat with my fingers Iprefer to sit on the ground-the position in a chair is too formalfor what is to follow. When we are seated, a servant bringswater in a basin and ewer, and a towel, and we wash our righthands-the left hand is not to be used. Soup is first served.The dish is placed in the middle of the table, and we are givenspoons with which each one dips in, and eats rapidly or slowlyaccording to habit; but there is necessarily some deliberationabout it, for we cannot all dip at once. The soup is excellent,and we praise it, to the great delight of our host, who shows hishandsome teeth and says tyeb; all that we have hitherto said wastyeb, we now add kateér. More smiles; and claret is brought in-another concession to foreign tastes.After the soup, we rely upon our fingers, under the instructionsof Ali and an Arab guest. The dinner consists of many courses,each article served separately, but sometimes placed upon thetable in three or four dishes for the convenience of the convivein reaching it. There are meats and vegetables of all sortsprocurable, fish, beef, mutton, veal, chickens, turkeys, quails andother small birds, pease, beans, salad, and some compositionswhich defied such analysis as one could make with his thumband finger. Our host prided himself upon having a Turkishartist in the kitchen, and the cooking was really good and toothsome, even to the pastry and sweetmeats; we did not accusehim of making the champagne.There is no difficulty in getting at the meats; we tear off strips,mutually assisting each other in pulling them asunder; but thereis more trouble about such dishes as pease and a purée of something. One hesitates to make a scoop of his four fingers, andplunge in; and then it is disappointing to an unskilled personto see how few peas he can convey to his mouth at a time. Isequester and keep by me the breast-bone of a chicken, whichmakes an excellent scoop for small vegetables and gravies, andI am doing very well with it, until there is a universal protestagainst the unfairness of the device.Our host praises everything himself in the utmost simplicity,and urges us to partake of each dish; he is continually pickingTHE DANCE. 379out nice bits from the dish and conveying them to the mouth ofhis nearest guest. My friend who sits next to Ali, ought to begrateful for this delicate attention, but I fear he is not. Thefact is that Ali, by some accident, in fishing, hunting, or war, haslost the tip of the index finger of his right hand, the very handthat conveys the delicacies to my friend's mouth. And he toldme afterwards, that he felt each time he was fed that he hadswallowed that piece of the consul's finger.During the feast there is music by performers in the adjoininghall, music in minor, barbaric strains insisted on with the monotonous nonchalance of the Orient, and calculated, I should say,to excite a person to ferocity, and to make feeding with hisfingers a vent to his aroused and savage passions. At the endof the courses water is brought for us to lave our hands, andcoffee and chibooks are served."Dinner very nice, very fine, " says Ali, speaking the commonthought which most hosts are too conventional to utter."A splendid dinner, O! consul; I have never seen such anone in America. "The Ghawazees have meantime arrived; we hear a burst ofsinging occasionally with the wail of the instruments. Thedancing is to be in the narrow hall of the house, which islighted as well as a room can be with so many dusky faces in it.At the far end are seated on the floor the musicians, withtwo stringed instruments, a tambourine and a darabooka. Thatwhich answers for a violin has two strings of horsehair, stretchedover a cocoanut-shell; the bowstring, which is tightened by thehand as it is drawn, is of horsehair. The music is certainlyexciting, harassing, plaintive, complaining; the very monotony of it would drive one wild in time. Behind the musiciansis a dark cloud of turbaned servants and various privilegedretainers of the house. In front of the musicians sit the Ghawazees, six girls, and an old women with parchment skin andtwinkling eyes, who has been a famous dancer in her day. Theyare waiting a little wearily, and from time to time one of themthrows out the note or two of a song, as if the music werebeginning to work in her veins. The spectators are grouped at380 'FANTASIA' OF THE GHAWAZEES.the entrance of the hall and seated on chairs down each side,leaving but a narrow space for the dancers between; and thereare dusky faces peering in at the door.Before the dance begins we have an opportunity to see whatthese Ghawazees are like, a race which prides itself uponpreserving a pure blood for thousands of years, and upon anancestry that has always followed the most disreputable profession. These girls are aged say from sixteen to twenty; oneappears much older and looks exactly like an Indian squaw,but, strange to say, her profile is also exactly that of Rameses aswe see it in the sculptures. The leading dancer is dressed in aflaring gown of red and figured silk, a costly Syrian dress; she isfat, rather comely, but coarsely uninteresting, although she is saidto have on more jewelry than any other dancing-girl in Egypt;her abundant black hair is worn long and in strands thickly hungwith gold coins; her breast is covered with necklaces of goldwork and coins; and a mass of heavy twinkling silver ornamentshangs about her waist. A third dancer is in an almost equallystriking gown of yellow, and wears also much coin; she is a Pharaonic beauty, with a soft skin and the real Oriental eye and profile. The dresses of all are plainly cut, and straight- waisted , likean ordinary calico gown of a milkmaid. They wear no shawlsor any other Oriental wrappings, and dance in their stocking-feet.At a turn in the music, the girl in red and the girl in yellowstand up; for an instant they raise their castanets till the timeof the music is caught, and then start forward, with less oflanguor and a more skipping movement than we expected; andthey are not ungraceful as they come rapidly down the hall,throwing the arms aloft and the feet forward, to the rattle ofthe castanets. These latter are small convex pieces of brass,held between the thumb and finger, which have a click like therattle of the snake. In mid-advance they stop, face each other,chassee, retire, and again come further forward, stop, and thepeculiar portion of the dance begins, which is not dancing at all,but a quivering, undulating motion given to the body, as thegirl stands with feet planted wide apart. The feet are still, thehead scarcely stirs, except with an almost imperceptible snakelike movement, but the muscles of the body to the hips quiverTHE "ANCIENT STYLE" OF DANCING. 3S1in time to the monotonous music, in muscular thrills, in wavesrunning down, and at intervals extending below the waist.Sometimes one side of the body quivers while the other isperfectly still, and then the whole frame, for a second, shares inthe ague. It is certainly an astonishing muscular performance,but you could not call it either graceful or pleasing. Somepeople see in the intention of the dance a deep symbolicmeaning, something about the Old Serpent of the Nile, with itsgliding, quivering movement and its fatal fascination. Otherssee in it only the common old Snake that was in Eden. Isuppose in fact that it is the old and universal Oriental dance,the chief attraction of which never was its modesty.After standing for a brief space, with the body throbbing andquivering, the castanets all the time held above the head insympathetic throbs, the dancers start forward, face each other,pass, pirouette, and take some dancing steps, retire, advance andrepeat the earthquake performance. This is kept up a longtime, and with wonderful endurance, without change of figure;but sometimes the movements are more rapid, when the musichastens, and more passion is shown. But five minutes of it is asgood as an hour. Evidently the dance is nothing except with amaster, with an actress who shall abandon herself to the tide offeeling which the music suggests and throw herself into the fullpassion of it; who knows how to tell a story by pantomime, andto depict the woes of love and despair. All this needs grace,beauty, and genius. Few dancing- girls have either. An oldresident of Luxor complains that the dancing is not at all whatit was twenty years ago, that the old fire and art seem to be lost."The old hag, sitting there on the floor, was asked to exhibitthe ancient style; she consented, and danced marvelously fora time, but the performance became in the end too shameful tobe witnessed. "I fancy that if the dance has gained anything in propriety,which is hard to believe, it has lost in spirit. It might bepassionate, dramatic, tragic. But it needs genius to make itanything more than a suggestive and repulsive vulgarity.During the intervals, the girls sing to the music; the singing382 THE POETRY OF very wild and barbaric. The song is in praise of the Night, alove-song consisting of repeated epithets:-"O the Night! nothing is so lovely as the Night!O my heart! O my soul! O my liver!My love he passed my door, and saw me not;O the night! How lovely is the Night! "The strain is minor, and there is a wail in the voices whichstridently chant to the twanging strings. Is it only the echo ofa*ges of sin in these despairing voices? How melancholy it allbecomes! The girl in yellow, she of the oblong eyes, straightnose and high type of Oriental beauty, dances down alone; sheis slender, she has the charm of grace, her eyes never wander tothe spectators. Is there in her soul any faint contempt for herselfor for the part she plays? Or is the historic consciousness ofthe antiquity of both her profession and her sin strong enoughto throw yet the lights of illusion over such a performance?Evidently the fat girl in red is a prey to no such misgiving, asshe comes bouncing down the line, and flings herself into herague fit." Look out, the hippopotamus! " cries Abd-el-Atti, “ I 'fraidshe kick me."While the dance goes on, pipes, coffee, and brandy arefrequently passed; the dancers swallow the brandy readily.The house is illuminated, and the entertainment ends with afew rockets from the terrace. This is a full-blown " fantasia."As the night is still young and the moon is full, we decideto efface, as much as may be, the vulgarities of modern Egypt,by a vision of the ancient, and, taking donkeys we ride toKarnak.For myself I prefer day to night, and abounding sunshineto the most generous moonlight; there is always some disappointment in the night effect in ruins, under the mostfavorable conditions. But I have great deference to thatpoetic yearning for half-light, which leads one to grope aboutin the heavy night- shadows of a stately temple; there is nobird more worthy of respect than the round-eyed attendantof Pallas-Athene.KARNAK BY MOONLIGHT. 383And it cannot be denied that there is something mysteriousand almost ghostly in our silent night ride. For once, ourattendants fall into the spirit of the adventure, keep silent,and are only shades at our side. Not a word or a blow isheard as we emerge from the dark lanes of Luxor and comeout into the yellow light of the plain; the light seems strongand yet the plain is spectral, small objects become gigantic,and although the valley is flooded in radiance, the end of oursmall procession is lost in dimness. Nothing is real, allthings take fantastic forms, and all proportions are changed.One moves as in a sort of spell, and it is this unreality whichbecomes painful. The old Egyptians had need of little imagination to conjure up the phantasmagoria of the under- world;it is this without the sun.So far as we can see it, the great mass of stone is impressiveas we approach-I suspect because we know how vast andsolid it is; and the pylons never seemed so gigantic before.We do our best to get into a proper frame of mind, bywandering apart, and losing ourselves in the heavy shadows.And for moments we succeed. It would have been the shameof our lives not to have seen Karnak by moonlight. TheGreat Hall, with its enormous columns planted close together,it is more difficult to see by night than by day, but suchglimpses as we have of it, the silver light slanting throughthe stone forest and the heavy shadows, are profoundlyimpressive. I climb upon a tottering pylon where I can seeover the indistinct field and chaos of stone, and look downinto the weird and half- illumined Hall of Columns. In thisisolated situation I am beginning to fall into the classicalmeditation of Marius at Carthage, when another party ofvisitors arrives, and their donkeys, meeting our donkeys inthe center of the Great Hall, begin (it is their donkeys that' begin) such a braying as never was heard before; the challenge is promptly responded to, and a duet ensues and iscontinued and runs into a chorus, so hideous, so unsanctified,so wretchedly attuned, and out of harmony with history,384 SOMETHING TO DO AT LUXOR.romance, and religion, that sentiment takes wings with silenceand flies from the spot.We can pick up again only some scattered fragments ofemotion by wandering alone in the remotest nooks. But wecan go nowhere that an Arab, silent and gowned, does notglide from behind a pillar or step out of the shade, staff inhand, and stealthily accompany us. Even the donkey- boyshave cultivated their sensibilities by association with othernocturnal pilgrims, and encourage our gush of feeling byremarking in a low voice, “ Karnak very good. " One ofthem, who had apparently attended only the most refined andappreciative, keeps repeating at each point of view, " Exquisite!"As I am lingering behind the company' a shadow glides upto me in the gloom of the great columns, with " good evening "; and, when I reply, it draws nearer, and, in confidentialtones, whispers, as if it knew that the moonlight visit wasdifferent from that by day, " Backsheesh. "There is never wanting something to do at Luxor, if all theexcursions were made. There is always an exchange ofcourtesies between dahabeëhs, calls are made and dinnersgiven. In the matter of visits the naval etiquette prevails,and the last comer makes the first call. But if you do notcare for the society of travelers, you can at least make one ofthe picturesque idlers on the bank; you may chance to see adisplay of Arab horsemanship; you may be entertained bysome new device of the curiosity-mongers; and there alwaysremain the "collections " of the dealers to examine. One ofthe best of them is that of the German consul, who rejoicesin the odd name of Todrous Paulos, which reappears in hisson as Moharb Todrous; a Copt who enjoys the reputationamong Moslems of a trustworthy man-which probably meansthat a larger proportion of his antiquities are genuine than oftheirs. If one were disposed to moralize there is abundantfield for it here in Luxor. I wonder if there is an insatiabledemoralization connected with the dealing in antiquities, andespecially in the relics of the departed. When a person, as aHONORED BY THE SULTAN. 385business, obtains his merchandise from the unresisting clutchof the dead, in violation of the firman of his ruler, does headd to his wickedness by manufacturing imitations and sellingthem as real? And what of the traveler who encouragesboth trades by buying?One night the venerable Mustapha Aga gave a grandentertainment, in honor of his reception of a firman from theSultan, who sent him a decoration of diamonds set in silver.Nothing in a Moslem's eyes could exceed the honor of thisrecognition by the Khalif, the successor of the Prophet. Itwas an occasion of religious as well as of social demonstrationof gratitude. There was service, with the reading of theKoran in the mosque, for the faithful only; there was aslaughter of sheep with a distribution of the mutton amongthe poor; and there was a fantasia at the residence of Mustapha (the house built into the columns of the temple of Luxor),to which everybody was bidden . There had been an arrivalof Cook's Excursionists by steamboat, and there must havebeen as many as two hundred foreigners at the entertainmentin the course ofthe evening.The way before the house was arched with palms and hungwith colored lanterns; bands of sailors from the dahabeëhssat in front, strumming the darabooka and chanting theirwild refrains; crowds of Arabs squatted in the light of theillumination and filled the steps and the doorway. Withinwere feasting, music, and dancing, in Oriental abandon. Inthe hall, which was lined with spectators, was to be seenthe stiff- legged sprawling-about and quivering of the Ghawazees, to the barbarous tum-tum, thump-thump, of themusicians; in each side- room also dancing was extemporized,until the house was pervaded with the monotonous vulgarity,which was more pronounced than at the house of Ali.In the midst of these strange festivities, the grave Mustaphareceived congratulations upon his newly conferred honor,with the air of a man who was responding to it in the finestOriental style. Nothing grander than this entertainmentcould be conceived in Luxor.25386 BIDDING FAREWELL TO THEBES.Let us try to look at it also with Oriental eyes. How fatalit would be to it not to look at it with Oriental eyes, we canconceive by transferring the scene to New York. A citizen,from one of the oldest families, has received from the President, let us suppose, the decoration of the Grand Order ofInspector ofConsulates. In order to do honor to the occasion,he throws open his residence on Gramercy Park, procures alot of sailors to sit on his steps and sing nautical ditties, anddrafts a score of girls from Central-street to entertain hisguests with a style of dancing which could not be worse if ithad three thonsand years of antiquity.I prefer not to regard this Luxor entertainment in such alight; and although we hasten from it as soon as we can withcivility, I am haunted for a long time afterwards by I knownot what there was in it of fantastic and barbaric fascination.The last afternoon at Luxor we give to a long walk toKarnak and beyond, through the wheat and barley fields nowvocal with the songs of birds. We do not, however, reach theconspicuous pillars of a temple on the desert far to the northeast; but, returning, climb the wall of circuit and look ourlast upon these fascinating ruins. From this point the relative vastness of the Great Hall is apparent. The view thisafternoon is certainly one of the most beautiful in the world.You know already the elements of it.Late at night, after a parting dinner of ceremony, and witha pang of regret, although we are in bed, the dahabeëh isloosed from Luxor and we quietly drop down below oldThebes.WⓇ



WE ARE at home again. Our little world, which hasbeen somewhat disturbed by the gaiety of Thebes,and is already as weary of tombs as of temples andof the whole incubus of Egyptian civilization, readjusts itselfand settles into its usual placid enjoyment.We have now two gazelles on board, and a most disagreeable lizard, nearly three feet long; I dislike the way his legsare set on his sides; I dislike his tail, which is a fat continuation of his body; and the " feel " of his cold, creeping fleshis worse than his appearance; he is exceedingly active,darting rapidly about in every direction to the end of hisrope. The gazelles chase each other about the deck, frolicking in the sun, and their eyes express as much tendernessand affection as any eyes can, set like theirs. If they weremounted in a woman's head, and properly shaded with longlashes, she would be the most dangerous being in existence.Somehow there is a little change in the atmosphere of thedahabeëh. The jester of the crew, who kept them alternatelylaughing and grumbling, singing and quarreling, turbulentwith hasheesh or sulky for want of it, was left in jail atAssouan. The reïs has never recovered the injury to hisdignity inflicted by his brief incarceration, and gives us nomore a cheerful good- morning. The steersman smiles still,with the fixed look of enjoyment that his face assumed whenit first came into the world, but he is listless; I think he hasstruck a section of the river in which there is a dearth of his387388 "VERY GRAMMATICK!"wives; he has complained that his feet were cold in the freshmornings, but the stockings we gave him he does not wear,and probably is reserving for a dress occasion . Abd- el-Attimeditates seriously upon a misunderstanding with one of hisold friends at Luxor; he likes to tell us about the diplomaticand sarcastic letter he addressed him on leaving; " I wroteit," he says, "very grammatick, the meaning of him verydeep; I think he feel it." There is no language like theArabic for the delivery of courtly sarcasm, in soft words, atwhich no offence can be taken,-for administering a smart slapin the face, so to say, with a feather.It is a ravishing sort of day, a slight haze, warm but lifegiving air, and we row a little and sail a little down thebroadening river, by the palms, and the wheat- fields growingyellow, and the soft chain of Libyan hills,—the very dolcefarniente of life. Other dahabeëhs accompany us, and we hearthe choruses of their crews responding to ours. From theshore comes the hum of labor and of idleness, men at theshadoofs, women at the shore for water; there are flocks ofwhite herons and spoonbills on the sandbars; we glide pastvillages with picturesque pigeon- houses; a ferry-boat everand anon puts across, a low black scow, its sides banked upwith clay, a sail all patches and tatters, and crowded in itthree or four donkeys and a group of shawled women andturbaned men, silent and sombre. The country throughwhich we walk, towards night, is a vast plain of wheat,irrigated by canals, with villages in all directions; the peasants are shabbily dressed, as if taxes ate up all their labor,but they do not beg.The city of Keneh, to which we come next morning, is thenearest point of the Nile to the Red Sea, the desert route toKosseir being only one hundred and twenty miles; it is theNeapolis of which Herodotus speaks, near which was thegreat city of Chemmis, that had a temple dedicated to Perseus. The Chemmitæ declared that this demi-god oftenappeared to them on earth, and that he was descended fromcitizens of their country who had sailed into Greece; there isTHE POTTERIES OF ΚΕΝΕΗ. 3891no doubt that Perseus came here when he made the expedition into Libya to bring the Gorgon's head.Keneh is now a thriving city, full of evidences of wealth,and of well-dressed people, and there are handsome housesand bazaars like those of Cairo. From time immemorial ithas been famous for its koollehs, which are made of a fine clayfound only in this vicinity, of which ware is manufacturedalmost as thin as paper. The process of making them hasnot changed since the potters of the Pharaohs' time. The potters of to-day are very skillful at the wheel. A small mass ofmoistened clay, mixed with sifted ashes of halfeh-grass andkneaded like bread, is placed upon a round plate of woodwhich whirls by a treadle. As it revolves the workman withhis hands fashions the clay into vessels of all shapes, gracefuland delicate, with a sleight of hand that is wonderful. Hemakes a koolleh, or a drinking-cup, or a vase with a slenderneck, in a few seconds, fashioning it as truly as if it were castin a mould. It was like magic to see the fragile forms growin his hands. We sat for a long time in one of the cool roomswhere two or three potters were at work, shaded from thesun by palm-branches, which let the light flicker upon theearth-floor, upon the freshly made vessels and the spinningwheels of the turbaned workmen, whose deft fingers wroughtout unceasingly these beautiful shapes from the revolvingclay.At the house of the English consul we have coffee; he afterwards lunches with us and insists, but in vain, that we stay andbe entertained by a Ghawazee dance in the evening. It is akind of amusem*nt of which a very little satisfies one. At hishouse, Prince Arthur and his suite were also calling; a slender,pleasant appearing young gentleman, not noticeable anywhereand with a face of no special force, but bearing the familylikeness. As we have had occasion to remark more than once,Princes are so plenty on the Nile this year as to be a burden tothe officials, especially German princes, who, however, do notcount any more. The private, unostentatious traveler, who asksno favor of the Khedive, is becoming almost a rarity. I hear390 THE LYING-IN TEMPLE.the natives complain that almost all the Englishmen of rankwho come to Egypt, beg, or shall we say accept? substantialfavors of the Khedive. The nobility appear to have a newrendering of noblesse oblige. This is rather humiliating tous Americans, who are, after all, almost blood- relations of theEnglish; and besides, we are often taken for Inglese, in villageswhere few strangers go. It cannot be said that all Americansare modest, unassuming travelers; but we are glad to record apoint or two in their favor:-they pay their way, and they do notappear to cut and paint their names upon the ruins in suchnumbers as travelers from other countries; the French are thegreatest offenders in this respect, and the Germans next.We cross the river in the afternoon and ride to the temple ofAthor or Venus at Denderah. This temple, although of lateconstruction, is considered one of the most important in Egypt.But it is incomplete, smaller, and less satisfactory than that atEdfoo. The architecture of the portico and succeeding hall ison the whole noble, but the columns are thick and ungraceful,and the sculptures are clumsy and ungraceful. The myth oftheEgyptian Venus is worked out everywhere with the elaborationof a later Greek temple. On the ceiling of several rooms hergigantic figure is bent round three sides, and from a globe inher lap rays proceed in the vivifying influence of which treesare made to grow.Everywhere in the temple are subterranean and intramuralpassages, entrance to which is only had by a narrow aperture,once closed by a stone. For what were these perfectly darkalleys intended? Processions could not move in them, and ifthey were merely used for concealing valuables, why should theirinner sides have been covered with such elaborate sculptures?The most interesting thing at Denderah is the small temple ofOsiris, which is called the "lying- in temple, " the subjects ofsculptures being the mystical conception, birth, and babyhood ofOsiris. You might think from the pictures on the walls, ofbabes at nurse and babes in arms, that you had obtruded intoone of the institutions of charity called a Day Nursery. We areglad to find here, carved in large, the image of the four-headed,SHEYKH SALEEM'S ROOSTING-PLACE. 391ugly little creature we have been calling Typhon, the spirit ofevil; and to learn that it is not Typhon but is the god Bes, ajolly promoter of merriment and dancing. His appearance isvery much against him.Mariette Bey makes the great mystery of the adytum of thelarge temple, which the king alone could enter, the goldensistrum which was kept there. The sistrum was the mysteriousemblem of Venus; it is sculptured everywhere in this building-although it is one of the sacred symbols found in all temples.This sacred instrument par excellence of the Egyptians played asimportant a part in their worship, says Mr. Wilkinson, as thetinkling bell in Roman Catholic services. The great privilegeof holding it was accorded to queens, and ladies of rank whowere devoted to the service of the deity. The sistrum is a stripof gold, or bronze, bent in a long loop, and the ends, comingtogether, are fastened in an ornamented handle. Through theloop bars are run upon which are rings, and when the instrumentis shaken the rings move to and fro. Upon the sides of thehandle were sometimes carved the faces of Isis and of Nephthys,the sister goddesses, representing the beginning and the end.It is a little startling to find, when we get at the inner secretof the Egyptian religion, that it is a rattle! But it is the symbolof eternal agitation, without which there is no life. And theEgyptians profoundly knew this great secret of the universe.We pass next day, quietly, to the exhibition of a religiousdevotion which is trying to get on without any sistrum or anyagitation whatever. Towards sunset, below Höw, we cometo a place where a holy man, called Sheykh Saleem, roosts forever on a sloping bank, with a rich country behindhim; beyond, on the plain, hundreds of men and boys are atwork throwing up an embankment against the next inundation;but he does not heed them. The holy man is stark naked andsits upon his haunches, his head, a shock of yellow hair, upon hisknees. He is of that sickly, whitey-black color which such holyskin as his gets by long exposure. Before him on the bank is arow of large water-jars; behind him is a little kennel of mud,into which he can crawl if it ever occurs to him to go to bed.392 TIMELY BREEZES.About him, seated on the ground, is a group of his admirers.Boys run after us along the bank begging backsheesh for SheykhSaleem. A crowd of hangers-on, we are told, always surroundhim, and live on the charity that his pięty evokes from thefaithful. His own wants are few. He spend his life in thisattitude principally, contemplating the sand between his knees.He has sat here for forty years.People pass and repass, camels swing by him, the sun shines,a breeze as of summer moves the wheat behind him, and ourgreat barque, with its gay flags and a dozen rowers rowing intime, sweeps before him, but he does not raise his head. Perhapshe has found the secret of perfect happiness. But his examplecannot be widely imitated. There are not many climates in theworld in which a man can enjoy such a religion out of doors atall seasons of the year.We row on and by sundown are opposite Farshoot and itssugar-factories; the river broadens into a lake, shut in to thenorth by limestone hills rosy in this light, and it is perfectly stillat this hour. But for the palms against the sky, and the cries ofmen at the shadoofs, and the clumsy native boats with theirfreight of immobile figures, this might be a glassy lake in theremote Adirondack forest, especially when the light has so muchdiminished that the mountains no longer appear naked.The next morning as we were loitering along, wishing for abreeze to take us quickly to Bellianeh, that we might spend theday in visiting old Abydus, a beautiful wind suddenly aroseaccording to our desire."You always, have good fortune, " says the dragoman."I thought you didn't believe in luck? ""Not to call him luck. You think the wind to blow ' thoutthe Lord know it? "We approach Bellianeh under such fine headway that we fallalmost into the opposite murmuring, that this helpful breezeshould come just when we were obliged to stop and lose thebenefit. We half incline to go on, and leave Abydus in its ashes,but the absurdity of making a journey of seven thousand milesand then passing near to, but unseen, the spot most sacred to theSCARECROWS! 393But ourmind isold Egyptians, flashes upon us, and we meekly land .inclination to go on was not so absurd as it seems; theso constituted that it can contain only a certain amount of oldruins, and we were getting a mental indigestion of them. Loathing is perhaps too strong a word to use in regard to a piece ofsculpture, but I think that a sight at this time, of Rameses II .in his favorite attitude of slicing off the heads of a lot of smallcaptives, would have made us sick.By eleven o'clock we were mounted for the ride of eight miles,and it may give some idea of the speed of the donkey undercompulsion, to say that we made the distance in an hour andforty minutes. The sun was hot, the wind fresh, the dustconsiderable,-a fine sandy powder that, before night, penetrated clothes and skin. Nevertheless, the ride was charming.The way lay through a plain extending for many miles in everydirection, every foot of it green with barley (of which here andthere a spot was ripening) , with clover, with the rank, darkEgyptian bean. The air was sweet, and filled with songs ofthe birds that glanced over the fields or poised in air on evenwing like the lark. Through the vast, unfenced fields werenarrow well- beaten roads in all directions, upon which menwomen, and children, usually poorly and scantily clad, donkeysand camels, were coming and going. There was the hum ofvoices everywhere, the occasional agonized blast of the donkeyand the caravan bleat of the camel. It often seems to us thatthe more rich and broad the fields and the more abundant thelife, the more squalor among the people.We had noticed, at little distances apart in the plain, moundsof dirt five or six feet high. Upon each of these stood a solitaryfigure, usually a naked boy-a bronze image set up above thegreen."What are these? " we ask."What you call scarecrows, to frighten the birds; see that chilethrow dirt at ' em! ""They look like sentries; do the people here steal? ""Everybody help himself, if nobody watch him."At length we reach the dust- swept village of Arábat, on the394 THE BURIAL-PLACE OF OSIRIS.edge of the desert, near the ruins of the ancient Thinis (orAbvdus), the so-called cradle of the Egyptian monarchy. Theyhave recently been excavated. I cannot think that thisancient and most important city was originally so far from theNile; it the day of its glory the river must have run near it .Here was the seat of the first Egyptian dynasty, five thousandand four years before Christ, according to the chronology ofMariette Bey. I find no difficulty in accepting the five thousandbut I am puzzled about the four years. It makes Menes fouryears older than he is generally supposed to have been. It isthe accuracy of the date that sets one pondering. Menes, thefirst-known Egyptian king, and the founder of Memphis, wasborn here. If he established his dynasty here six thousandeight hundred and seventy-nine years ago, he must have beenborn some time before that date; and to be a ruler he must havebeen of noble parents, and no doubt received a good education.I should like to know what sort of a place, as to art, say, andliterature, and architecture, Thinis was seven thousand and fouryears ago. It is chiefly sand-heaps now.grey dawn of history,earth, was buried hereHis tomb was veneratedHoly Sepulchre is byNot only was Menes born here, in thebut Osiris, the manifestation of Light onin the greyer dawn of a mythic the Pharaonic worshippers as theChristians, and for many ages. It was the last desire of the richand noble Egyptians to be buried at Thinis, in order that theymight lie in the same grave with Osiris; and bodies were broughthere from all parts of Egypt to rest in the sacred earth. Theirtombs were heaped up one above another, about the grave of thegod. There are thousands of mounds here, clustering thicklyabout a larger mound; and, by digging, M. Mariette hopes tofind the reputed tomb of Osiris. An enclosure of crude brickmarks the supposed site of this supposed most ancient city ofEgypt.From these prehistoric ashes, it is like going from Rome toPeoria, to pass to a temple built so late as the time of Sethi I.,only about thirty-three hundred years ago. It has been nearlyall excavated and it is worth a long ride to see it. Its planASININE PERFORMANCES. 395differs from that of all other temples, and its varied sculptureranks with the best of temple carving; nowhere else have wefound more life and grace of action in the figures and moreexpressive features; in number of singular emblems anddevices, and in their careful and beautiful cutting, and brilliant coloring, the temple is unsurpassed. The non-stereotyped plan of the temple beguiled us into a hearty enjoymentofit. Its numerous columns are pure Egyptian of the beststyle-lotus capitals; and it contains some excellent specimensof the Doric column, or of its original, rather. The famousoriginal tablet of kings, seventy- six, from Menes to Sethi, apartial copy of which is in the British Museum, has beenre- covered with sand for its preservation. This must havebeen one of the finest of the old temples. We find here thenovelty of vaulted roofs, formed by a singular method. Theroof stones are not laid flat, as elsewhere, but on edge, andthe roof, thus having sufficient thickness, is hollowed out onthe under side, and the arch is decorated with stars and otherdevices. Of course, there is a temple of Rameses II. , nextdoor to this one, but it exists now only in its magnificentfoundations.We rode back through the village of Arábat in a whirlwindof dust, amid cries of " backsheesh," hailed from every doorand pursued by yelling children. One boy, clad in the loosegown that passes for a wardrobe in these parts, in order toearn his money, threw a summersault before us, and, in aflash, turned completely out of his clothes, like a new-madeAdam! Nothing was ever more neatly done; except it mayhave been a feat of my donkey a moment afterwards, executedperhaps in rivalry of the boy. Pretending to stumble, hewent on his head, and threw a summersault also. When Iwent back to look for him, his head was doubled under hisbody so that he had to be helped up.When we returned we found six other dahabeëhs moorednear ours. Out ofthe seven, six carried the American flagone of them in union with the German-and the seventh wasEnglish. The American flags largely outnumber all others396 SPOILS Of the orient.on the Nile this year; in fact Americans and various kinds ofPrinces appear to be monopolizing this stream. A German,who shares a boat with Americans, drops in for a talk. It iswonderful how much more space in the world every Germanneeds, now that there is a Germany. Our visitor expressesthe belief that the Germans and the Americans are to sharethe dominion of the world between them . I suppose thatthis means that we are to be permitted to dwell on our presentpossessions in peace, if we don't make faces; but one cannotcontemplate the extinction of all the other powers withoutregret.Ofcourse we have outstayed the south wind; the next morning we are slowly drifting against the north wind. As I lookfrom the window before breakfast, a Nubian trader floats past,and on the bow deck is crouched a handsome young lion,honest of face and free of glance, little dreaming of the miserable menagerie life before him. There are two lions and aleopard, and a cargo of cinnamon, senna, elephants' tusks, andostrich- feathers, on board; all Central Africa seems to floatbeside us, and the coal- black crew do not lessen the barbaricimpression.It is after dark when we reach Girgeh, and are guided toour moorage by the lights of other dahabeëhs. All that wesee of this decayed but once capital town, are four minarets,two ofthem surrounding picturesque ruins and some slendercolumns of a mosque, the remainder of the building havingbeen washed into the river. As we land, a muezzin singsthe evening call to prayer in a sweet, high tenor voice; andit sounds like a welcome.Decayed, did we say of Girgeh? What is not decayed, ordecaying, or shifting, on this aggressive river? How agelaps back on age and one religion shuffles another out ofsight. In the hazy morning we are passing Menshéëh, thesite of an old town that once was not inferior to Memphis;and then we come to Ekhmeem-ancient Panopolis. Younever heard of it? A Roman visitor called it the oldest cityof all Egypt; it was in fact founded by Ekhmeem, the son of“BEAUTIFUL ANTIQUITIES.” 397Misraim, the offspring of Cush, the son of Ham. There youare, almost personally present at the Deluge. Below here aretwo Coptic convents, probably later than the time of the Empress Helena. On the shore are walking some Coptic Christians,but they are in no way superior in appearance to other natives;a woman, whom we hail, makes the sign of the cross, and thendemands backsheesh.We had some curiosity to visit a town of such honorablefoundation. We found in it fine mosques and elegant minarets,of a good Saracenic epoch. Upon the lofty stone top of onesat an eagle, who looked down upon us unscared; the mosquewas ruinous and the door closed, but through the windows wecould see the gaily decorated ceiling; the whole was in the sortof decay that the traveler learns to think Moslemism itself.We made a pretence of searching for the remains of a templeof Pan, though we probably care less for Pan than we do forRameses. Making known our wants, several polite gentlemenin turbans, offered to show us the way-the gentlemen in thesetowns seem to have no other occupation than to sit on theground and smoke the chibook-and we were attended by aprocession, beyond the walls, to the cemetery. There, in ahollow, we saw a few large stones, some of them showing marksof cutting. This was the temple spoken of in the hand-book.Our hosts then insisted upon dragging us half a mile furtherthrough the dust of the cemetery mounds, in the glare of thesun, and showed us a stone half buried, with a few hieroglyphicson one end. Never were people so polite. A grave man herejoined us, and proposed to show us some quei- is antéeka (" beautiful antiquities " ); and we followed this obliging person halfover town; and finally, in the court of a private house, hepointed to the torso of a blue granite statue. All this was doneout of pure hospitality; the people could not have been moreattentive if they had had something really worth seeing. Thetown has handsome, spacious coffee-houses and shops, and anappearance of Oriental luxury.One novelty the place offered, and that was in a drinkingfountain. Under a canopy, in a wall-panel, in the street, was398 WE VISIT THE “ OLD MASTERS."inserted a copper nipple, which was worn, by constant use, assmooth as the toe of St. Peter at Rome. When one wishes todrink, he applies his mouth to this nipple and draws; it requiressome power of suction to raise the water, but it is good and coolwhen it comes. As Herodotus would remark, now I have donespeaking about this nipple.We walked on interminably and at length obtained a nativeboat, with a fine assortment of fellahs and donkeys for passengers, to set us over to Soohag, the capital of the province, a busyand insupportably dirty town, with hordes of free- and-easynatives loafing about, and groups of them, squatting by littledabs of tobacco, or candy, or doora, or sugar-cane, making whatthey are pleased to call a market.It seemed to be a day for hauling us about. Two bright boysseized us, and urged us to go with them and see somethingmarvelously beautiful. One of them was an erect, handsomelad, with courtly and even elegant dignity, a high and yetsimple bearing, which I venture to say not a king's son inEurope is possessed of. They led us a chase, through half thesprawling town, by lanes and filthy streets, under bazaars, intothe recesses of domestic poverty, among unknown and inquisitivenatives, until we began to think that we should never see ournative dahabeëh again. At last we were landed in a courtwhere sat two men, adding up columns of figures. It was anOriental picture, but scarcely worth coming so far to see.The men looked at us in wondering query, as if demandingwhat we wanted.We stood looking at them, but couldn't tell them what wewanted, since we did not know. And if we had known, wecould not have told them. We only pointed to the boys whohad brought us. The boys pointed to the ornamental portals ofa closed door.After a long delay, and the most earnest posturing and professions of our young guides, and evident suspicion of us, akey was brought, and we were admitted into a cool andclean Coptic church, which had fresh matting and an odorof incense. Ostrich-eggs hung before the holy places, as inTHE KHEDIVE'S ACCOUNT: PROFIT AND LOSS. 399mosques; an old clock, with a long and richly inlaid dial- case,stood at one end; and there were paintings in the Byzantinestyle of " old masters. " One of them represented the patronsaint of the Copts, St. George, slaying the dragon; the conception does equal honor to the saint and the artist; the woodenhorse, upon which St. George is mounted, and its rider, fillnearly all the space of the canvas, leaving very little room forthe landscape with its trees, for the dragon, for the maiden, andfor her parents looking down upon her from the castle window.And this picture perfectly represents the present condition ofart in the whole Orient.At Soohag a steamboat passed down towing four barges,packed with motley loads of boys and men, impressed to workin the Khedive's sugar-factory at Rhodes. They are seized, somany from a village, like the recruits for the army. Theyreceive from two to two and a half piastres ( ten to twelve anda half cents) a day wages, and a couple of pounds of bread each.I suspect the reason the Khedive's agricultural operationsand his sugar-factories are unprofitable, is to be sought in thedishonest agents and middle-men-a kind of dishonesty thatseems to be ingrained in the Eastern economy. The Khediveloses both ways: -that which he attempts to expend on acertain improvement is greatly diminished before it reaches itsobject; and the returns from the investment, on their way backto his highness, are rubbed away, passing through so manyhands, to the vanishing point. It is the same with the taxes;the fellah pays four times as much as he ought, and the Khedivereceives not the government due. The abuse is worse than itwas in France with the farmers-general in the time of LouisXIV. and Louis XV. The tax apportioned to a province isrequired of its governor. He adds a lumping per cent. to thetotal, and divides the increased amount among his sub- governorsfor collection; they add a third to their levy and divide itamong the tax- gatherers of sections of the district; these againswell their quota before apportioning it among the sheykhs oractual collectors, and the latter take the very life- blood out ofthe fellah.400 HOPELESS “FELLAHS! "As we sail down the river in this approaching harvest-seasonwe are in continual wonder at the fertility of the land; afertility on the slightest cultivation, the shallowest plowing, andwithout fertilization. It is customary to say that the soil isinexhaustible, that crop after crop of the same kind can bedepended on, and the mud (limon) of the overflowing Nile willrepair all wastes.And yet, I somehow get an impression of degeneracy, ofexhaustion, both in Upper and Lower Egypt, in the soil; and itextends to men and to animals; horses, cattle , donkeys, camels,domestic fowls look impoverished—we have had occasion to saybefore that the hens lay ridiculously small eggs-they put thecontents of one egg into three shells. (They might not takethis trouble if eggs were sold by weight, as they should be. )The food of the country does not sufficiently nourish man orbeast. Its quality is deficient. The Egyptian wheat does notmake wholesome bread; most of it has an unpleasant odor-ittends to speedy corruption, it lacks certain elements, phosphorus probably. The bread that we eat on the dahabeëh is madefrom foreign wheat. The Egyptian wheat is at a large discountin European markets. One reason of this inferiority is supposedto be the succession of a wheat crop year after year upon thesame field; another is the absolute want of any fertilizer exceptthe Nile mud; and another the use of the same seed forever.Its virtue has departed from it, and the most hopeless thing inthe situation is the unwillingness of the fellah to try anythingnew, in his contented ignorance. The Khedive has madeextraordinary efforts to introduce improved machinery andprocesses, and he has set the example on his own plantations.It has no effect on the fellah. He will have none of the newinventions or new ways. It seems as hopeless to attempt tochange him as it would be to convert a pyramid into a Congregational meeting- house.For the political economist and the humanitarian, Egypt isthe most interesting and the saddest study of this age; itsagriculture and its people are alike unique. For the ordinarytraveler the country has not less interest, and I suppose he may"ISN'T IT A BEAUTY?" 401be pardoned if he sometimes loses sight of the misery in thestrangeness, the antique barbarity, the romance by which he is.surrounded.As we lay, windbound, a few miles below Soohag, the Nubiantrading-boat I had seen the day before was moored near; andwe improved this opportunity for an easy journey to CentralAfrica, by going on board. The forward-deck was piled withAfrican hides so high that the oars were obliged to be hung onoutriggers; the cabin deck was loaded with bags of gums,spices, medicines; and the cabin itself was stored so full, thatwhen we crawled down into it, there was scarcely room to situpright on the bags. Into this penetralia of barbaric merchandise, the ladies preceded us, upon the promise of the sedate andshrewd-eyed traveler to exhibit his ostrich-feathers. I supposenothing in the world of ornament is so fascinating to a womanas an ostrich-feather; and to delve into a mine of them, to beable to toss about handfuls, sheafs of them, to choose any sizeand shape and any color, glossy black, white, grey, and whitewith black tips, -it makes one a little delirious to think of it!There is even a mild enjoyment in seeing a lady take up a long,drooping plume, hold it up before her dancing, critical eyes,turning the head a little one side, shaking the feathered curveinto its most graceful fall-" Isn't it a beauty? " Is she thinking how it will look upon a hat of the mode? Not in the least.The ostrich- feather is the symbol of truth and justice; thingsthat are equal to the same thing are equal to each other-it isalso the symbol of woman. In the last Judgment before Osiris,the ostrich-feather is weighed in the balance against all thegood deeds of a man's life. You have seen many a man put allhis life against the pursuit of an ostrich-feather in a woman'shat the plume of truth in beauty's bonnet.While the ostrich-trade is dragging along its graceful length,other curiosities are produced; the short, dangerous tusks ofthe wild boar; the long tusks of the elephant-a beast whoseenormous strength is only made a show of, like that of Samson;and pretty silver-work from Soudan."What is this beautiful tawny skin, upon which I am sitting?"26402 LIONS' OIL."Lion's; she was the mother of one of the young lions outyonder. And this, " continued the trader, drawing somethingfrom the corner, " is her skull. " It gave a tender interest tothe orphan outside, to see these remains of his mother. Butsadness is misplaced on her account; it is better that she died,than to live to see her child in a menagerie.66 What's that thick stuff in a bottle there behind you? ""That's lion's oil, some of her oil. " Unhappy family, themother skinned and boiled, the offspring dragged into slavery.I took the bottle. To think that I held in my hand the oil ofa lion! Bear's oil is vulgar. But this is different; one mightanoint himself for any heroic deed with this royal ointment."And is that another bottle of it? ""Mais, no; you don't get a lion every day for oil; that isostrich-oil. This is good for rheumatism. "It ought to be. There is nothing rheumatic about the ostrich.When I have tasted sufficiently the barbaric joys of the cabin Iclimb out upon the deck to see more of this strange craft.Upon the narrow and dirty bow, over a slow fire, on a shallowcopper dish, a dark and slender boy is cooking flap-jacks as bigas the flap of a leathern apron. He takes the flap-jack up bythe edge in his fingers and turns it over, when one side iscooked, as easily as if it were a sheepskin. There is a pile ofthem beside him, enough to make a whole suit of clothes,burnous and all, and very durable it would prove. Near himis tied, by a cotton cord, a half-grown leopard, elegantlyspotted, who has a habit of running out his tongue, giving aside-lick of his chops, and looking at you in the most friendlymanner. If I were the boy I wouldn't stand with my nakedback to a leopard which is tied with a slight string.On shore, on the sand and in the edge of the wheat, areplaying in the sun a couple of handsome young lions, gentleas kittens. After watching their antics for some time, andcalculating the weight of their paws as they cuff each other, Isatisfy a long ungratified Van Amburg ambition, by pattingthe youngest on the head and putting my hand (for anexceedingly brief instant) into his mouth, experiencing aAGAINST THE WIND. 403certain fearful pleasure, remembering that although young heis a lion!The two play together very prettily, and when I leave themthey have lain down to sleep, face to face, with their armsround each other's necks, like the babes in the wood. Thelovely leopard occasionally rises to his feet and looks at them,and then lies down again, giving a soft sweep to his long andrather vicious tail. His countenance is devoid of the nobilityof the lion's. The lion's face inspires you with confidence;but I can see little to trust in the yellow depths of his eyes.The lion's eyes, like those of all untamed beasts, have therepulsive trait of looking at you without any recognition inthem-the dull glare of animality.The next morning, when the wind falls, we slip out fromour cover, like the baffled mariners of Jason, and row past thebold, purplish-grey cliff of Gebel Sheykh Hereedee, in whichare grottoes and a tomb of the sixth dynasty, and on to Tahta,a large town, almost as picturesque, in the distance, with itstall minarets and one great, red-colored building, as Venicefrom the Lido. Then the wind rises, and we are again tantalized with no progress. One likes to dally and eat the lotusby his own will; but when the elements baffle him, and thewind blows contrary to his desires, the old impatience, thefree will of ancient Adam, arises, and man falls out of hisparadise. We are tempted to wish to be hitched (just for aday, or to get round a bend, ) to one of these miserablesteamboats that go swashing by, frightening all the gamebirds, and fouling the sweet air of Egypt with the black smokeoftheir chimneys.In default of going on, we climb a high spur of the Mokattam, which has a vast desert plain on each side, and in front,and up and down the very crooked river (the wind wouldneed to change every five minutes to get us round thesebends), an enormous stretch of green fields, dotted withvillages, flocks of sheep and cattle, and strips of palm-groves.Whenever we get in Egypt this extensive view over mountains,desert, arable land, and river, it is always both lovely and404 A BAD REPUTATION:grand. There was this afternoon on the bare limestoneprecipices a bloom as of incipient spring verdure. There isalways some surprise of color for the traveler who goesashore, or looks from his window, on the Nile, either in thesky, or in the ground which has been steeped in color for somany ages that even the brown earth is rich.The people hereabouts have a bad reputation, perhaps giventhem by the government, against which they rebelled onaccount of excessive taxes; the insurrection was reduced byknocking a village or two into the original dust with cannonballs. We, however, found the inhabitants very civil. In thevillage was one of the houses of entertainment for wanderers-a half-open cow-shed it would be called in less favoredlands. The interior was decorated with the rudest designs inbright colors, and sentences from the Koran; we were toldthat any stranger could lodge in it and have something toeat and drink; but I should advise the coming traveler tobring his bed, and board also. We were offered the fruit ofthenabbek tree (something like a sycamore) , a small apple, asort of cross between the thorn and the crab, with thedisagreeable qualities of both. Most of the vegetables andfruits of the valley we find insipid; but the Fellaheen seemto like neutral flavors as they do neutral colors. The almostuniversal brown of the gowns in this region harmonizes withthe soil, and the color does not show dirt; a great point forpeople who sit always on the ground.The next day we still have need of patience; we start, meetan increasing wind, which whirls us about and blows us upstream . We creep under a bank and lie all day, a coldMarch day, and the air dark with dust.After this Sunday of rest, we walk all the following morning through fields of wheat and lentils, along the shore. Thepeople are uninteresting , men gruff; women ugly; clothesscarce; fruit, the nabbek, which a young lady climbs a tree toshake down for us. But I encountered here a little boy whofilled my day with sunshine.He was a sort of shepherd boy, and I found him alone in aA LITTLE EGYPTIAN MOZART. 405field, the guardian of a donkey which was nibbling coarse grass.But his mind was not on his charge, and he was so much absorbed in his occupation that he did not notice my approach. Hewas playing, for his own delight and evidently with intenseenjoyment, upon a reed pipe-an instrument of two short reeds,each with four holes, bound together, and played like a clarionet.Its compass was small, and the tune ran round and round init, accompanied by one of the most doleful drones imaginable.Nothing could be more harrowing to the nerves. I got the boyto play it a good deal. I saw that it was an antique instrument(it was in fact Pan's pipe unchanged in five thousand years) ,and that the boy was a musical enthusiast-a gentle Mozart wholived in an ideal world which he created for himself in the midstof the most forlorn conditions. The little fellow had the knackof inhaling and blowing at the same time, expanding his cheeks,and using his stomach like the bellows of the Scotch bagpipe,and producing the same droning sound as that delightful instrument. But I would rather hear this boy half a day than the bagpipe a week.I talked about buying the pipe, but the boy made it himself,and prized it so highly that I could not pay himwhat he thoughtit was worth, and I had not the heart to offer its real value.Therefore I left him in possession of his darling, and gave himhalf a silver piastre. He kissed it and thanked me warmly,holding the unexpected remuneration for his genius in his hand,and looking at it with shining eyes. I feel an instant pang, andI am sorry that I gave it to him. I have destroyed the pure andideal world in which he played to himself, and tainted the divinelove of sweet sounds with the idea of gain and the scent ofmoney. The serenity of his soul is broken up, and he will neveragain be the same boy, exercising his talent merely for the pleasure of it. He will inevitably think of profit, and will feverishlyexpect something from every traveler. He may even fall so faras to repair to landings where boats stop, and play in the hopeofbacksheesh.At night we came to Assiout, greeted from afar bythe sightof its slender and tall minarets and trees, on the rosy backgroundof sunset.



LETTING our dahabeëh drift on in the morning, we spendthe day at Assiout, intending to overtake it by a short cutacross the oxbow which the river makes here. We saw inthe city two examples, very unlike, of the new activity in Egypt.One related to education, the other to the physical developmentof the country and to conquest.After paying out respects to the consul, we were conducted byhis two sons to the Presbyterian Mission- School. These youngmen were educated at the American College in Beyrout. Nearlyeverywhere we have been in the East, we have found a graduateof this school, that is as much as to say, a person intelligent andanxious and able to aid in the regeneration of his country.would not be easy to overestimate the services that this oneliberal institution of learning is doing in the Orient.The mission-school was under the charge of the Rev. Dr.John Hogg and his wife (both Scotch) , with two women-teachers,and several native assistants. We were surprised to find an establishment of about one hundred and twenty scholars, of whom*over twenty were girls. Of course the majority of the studentswere in the primary studies, and some were very young; butthere were classes in advanced mathematics, in logic, history,English, etc. The Arab young men have a fondness for logicand metaphysics, and develop easily an inherited subtlety insuch studies. The text-books in use are Arabic, and that is themedium of teaching.The students come from all parts of Upper Egypt, and are406EDUCATION OF EGYPTIAN WOMEN. 407almost all the children of Protestant parents, and they are, withan occasional exception, supported by their parents, who pay atleast their board while they are at school. There were fewMoslems among them, I think only one Moslem girl. I ambound to say that the boys and young men in their close roomsdid not present an attractive appearance; an ill-assorted assembly, with the stamp of physical inferiority and dullness-aneffect partially due to their scant and shabby apparel, for someofthem had bright, intelligent faces.The school for girls, small as it is, impressed us as one of themost hopeful things in Egypt. I have no confidence in anyscheme for the regeneration of the country, in any developmentof agriculture, or extension of territory, or even in education, thatdoes not reach woman and radically change her and her position. It is not enough to say that the harem system is a curseto the East: woman herself is everywhere degraded . Until shebecomes totally different from what she now is, I am not surebut the Arab is right in saying that the harem is a necessity:the woman is secluded in it ( and in the vast majority of haremsthere is only one wife) and has a watch set over her, becauseshe cannot be trusted. One hears that Cairo is full of intrigue,in spite of locked doors and eunuchs. The large towns are worsethan the country; but I have heard it said that woman is the eviland plague of Egypt-though I don't know how the countrycould go on without her. Sweeping generalizations are dangerous, but it is said that the sole education of most Egyptianwomen is in arts to stimulate the passion of men. In the idlenessof the most luxurious harem, in the grim poverty of the lowestcabin, women is simply an animal.What can you expect of her? She is literally uneducated,untrained in every respect. She knows no more of domesticeconomy than she does of books, and she is no more fitted tomake a house attractive or a room tidy than she is to hold anintelligent conversation . Married when she is yet a child, toa person she may have never seen, and a mother at an agewhen she should be in school, there is no opportunity for her tobecome anything better than she is.408 DR. HOGG'S MISSION- SCHOOL.A primary intention in this school is to fit the girls to becomegood wives, who can set an example of tidy homes economicallymanaged, in which there shall be something of social life andintelligent companionship between husband and wife. The girlsare taught the common branches, sewing, cooking, and housekeeping as there is opportunity for learning it in the family ofthe missionaries. This house of Dr. Hogg's, with its books,music, civilized ménage, is a school in itself, and the girl whohas access to it for three or four years will not be content withthe inconvenience, the barren squalor of her parental hovel; forit is quite as much ignorance as poverty that produces Some of the girls now here expect to become teachers;some will marry young men who are also at this school. Suchan institution would be of incalculable service if it did nothingelse than postpone the marriage of women a few years. Thisschool is a small seed in Egypt, but it is, I believe, the germ ofa social revolution. It is, I think, the only one in Upper Egypt.There is a mission school of similar character in Cairo, and theKhedive also has undertaken schools for the education of girls .In the last room we came to the highest class, a dozen girls,some ofthem mere children in appearence, but all of marriageable age. I asked the age of one pretty child, who showeduncommon brightness in her exercises."She is twelve," said the superintendent, " and no doubtwould be married, if she were not here. The girls becomemarriageable from eleven years, and occasionally they marryyounger; if one is not married at fifteen she is in danger ofremaining single. ""Do the Moslems oppose your school? "" The heads of the religion endeavor to prevent Moslemchildren coming to it; we have had considerable trouble; butgenerally the mothers would like to have their girls taught here,they become better daughters and more useful at home. "" Can you see that you gain here? ""Little by little. The mission has been a wonderful success.I have been in Egypt eighteen years; since the ten years thatwe have been at Assiout, we have planted, in various towns inUpper Egypt, ten churches."RELIGION AND GRAMMAR."What do do you think is your greatest difficulty? ""Well, perhaps the Arabic language. ""The labor of mastering it? "409"Not that exactly, although it is an unending study. Arabicis an exceedingly rich language, as you know—a tongue that hasoften a hundred words for one simple object has almost infinitecapabilities for expressing shades of meaning. To knowArabic grammatically is the work of a lifetime. A man says,when he has given a long life to it, that he knows a little Arabic.My Moslem teacher here, who was as learned an Arab as I everknew, never would hear me in a grammatical lesson upon anypassage he had not carefully studied beforehand . He beggedme to excuse him, one morning, from hearing me ( I think wewere reading from the Koran) because he had not had time to goover the portion to be read. Still, the difficulty of which I speak,is that Arabic and the Moslem religion are one and the samething, in the minds of the faithful. To know Arabic is to learnthe Koran, and that is the learning of a learned Arab. He nevergets to the end of the deep religious meaning hidden in thegrammatical intricacies. Religion and grammar thus becomeone."."I suppose that is what our dragoman means, when he is reading me something out of the Koran, and comes to a passage thathe calls too deep. ""Yes. There is room for endless differences of opinion in therendering of almost any passage, and the disagreement is important, because it becomes a religious difference. I had anexample of the unity of the language and the religion in theMoslem mind. When I came here the learned thought I mustbe a Moslem because I knew the grammatical Arabic; theycould not conceive how else I should know it. "When we called upon his excellency, Shakeer Pasha, thesquare in front of his office and the streets leading to it were socovered with sitting figures that it was difficulty to make a wayamidst them. There was an unusual assembly of some sort, butit* purport we could not guess. It was hardly in the nature of apopular convention, although its members sat at their ease,410 THE ROUTE TO DARFOOR.smoking, and a babel of talk arose. Nowhere else in Egypt haveI seen so manyfine and even white- looking men gathered together.The center of every group was a clerk, with inkhorn and reed,going over columns of figures.The governor's quarters were a good specimen of Orientalstyle and shabbiness; spacious whitewashed apartments, withdirty faded curtains. But we were received with a politenessthat would have befitted a palace, and with the cordial ease ofold friends. The Pasha was heartbroken that we had not notified him of our coming, and that now our time would not permitus to stay and accept a dinner-had we not promised to do so onour return? He would send couriers and recall our boat, hewould detain us by force. Allowing for all the exaggeration ofOriental phraseology, it appeared only too probable that thePasha would die if we did not stay to dinner and spend the night.But we did not.This great concourse? Oh, they were skeykhs and head menof all the villages in the country round, whom he had summonedto arrange for the purchase of dromedaries. The governmenthas issued orders for the purchase of a large number, which itwants to send to Darfour. The Khedive is making a great effortto open the route to Darfour (twenty-eight days by camel) toregular and safe travel, and to establish stations on the road.That immense and almost unknown territory will thus be broughtwithin the commercial world.During our call we were served with a new beverage in placeofcoffee; it was a hot and sweetened tea of cinnamon, and verydelicious.On our return to the river, we passed the new railway stationbuilding, which is to be a handsome edifice of white limestone.Men, women, and children are impressed to labor on it, and, anintelligent Copt told us, without pay. Very young girls were themortar-carriers, and as they walked to and fro, with small boxeson their heads, they sang, the precocious children, an Arab lovesong;-" He passed by my door, he did not speak to me. ”We have seen little girls, quite as small as these, forced toA STRIKING CONTRAST. 411seers.load coal upon the steamers, and beaten and cuffed by the overIt is a hard country for women. They have only a yearor two of time, in which all- powerful nature and the wooing sunsing within them the songs of love, then a few years of marriedslavery, and then ugliness, old age, and hard work.I do not know a more melancholy subject of reflection thanthe condition, the lives of these women we have been seeingfor three months. They have neither any social nor anyreligious life. If there were nothing else to condemn thesystem of Mohammed, this is sufficient. I know what splendors of art it has produced, what achievements in war, whatbenefits to literature and science in the dark ages of Europe.But all the culture of a race that in its men has borne accomplished scholars, warriors, and artists, has never touched thewomen. The condition of woman in the Orient is theconclusive verdict against the religion of the Prophet.I will not contrast that condition with the highest; I willnot compare a collection of Egyptian women, assembled forany purpose, a funeral or a wedding, with a society ofAmerican ladies in consultation upon some work of charity,nor with an English drawing- room. I chanced once to bepresent at a representation of Verdi's Grand Mass, in Venice,when all the world of fashion, of beauty, of intelligence,assisted. The coup d'œil was brilliant. Upon the stage, halfa hundred of the chorus- singers were ladies. The leadingsolo-singers were ladies. I remember the freshness, even, the vivacity, the gay decency of the toilet, ofthat group of women who contributed their full share in amost intelligent and at times profoundly pathetic renderingof the Mass. I recall the sympathetic audience, largelycomposed of women, the quick response to a noble strainnobly sung, the cheers, the tears even which were not wanting in answer to the solemn appeal, in fine, the highlycivilized sensitiveness to the best product of religious art.Think of some such scene as that, and of the women of anEuropean civilization; and then behold the women who arethe product of this, the sad, dark fringe of water- drawersand baby-carriers, for eight hundred miles along the Nile.412 WINTER residenCE OF THE HOLY FAMILY.We have a row in the sandal of nine miles before weOvertake our dahabeëh, which the wind still baffles. However,we slip along under the cover of darkness, for, at dawn, Ihear the muezzin calling to prayer at Manfaloot, trying invain to impress a believing but drowsy world, that prayer isbetter than sleep. This is said to be the place where Lotpassed the period of his exile. Near here, also, the HolyFamily sojourned when it spent a winter in Egypt.Moslems have appropriated and localized everything in ourScriptures which is picturesque, and they plant our Biblicalcharacters where it is convenient) . It is a very pretty town,with minarets and gardens.(TheIt surprises us to experience such cool weather towards themiddle of March; at nine in the morning the thermometermarks 55°; the north wind is cold, but otherwise the day isroyal. Having nothing better to do we climb the cliffs ofGebel Aboofeyda, at least a thousand feet above the river;for ten miles it presents a bold precipice, unscalable except atintervals. We find our way up a ravine. The rocks surfacethe river and in the ravine are worn exactly as the sea wearsrock, honeycombed by the action of water, and excavated intoveritable sea- caves near the summit. The limestone is richin fossil shells.The plain on top presented a singular appearance. It wasstrewn with small boulders, many of them round and asshapely as cannon- balls, all formed no doubt before theinvention of the conical missiles. While we were amusingourselves with the thousand fantastic freaks of nature inhardened clay, two sinister Arabs approached us from behindand cut off our retreat. One was armed with a long gun andthe other with a portentous spear. We saluted them in themost friendly manner, and hoped that they would pass on:but, no, they attached themselves to us. I tried to think ofcases of travelers followed into the desert on the Nile andmurdered, but none occurred to me. There seemed to be nodanger from the gun so long as we kept near its owner, forthe length of it would prevent his bringing it into action closeA MIRAGE. 413at hand. The spear appeared to be the more effective weaponofthe two; it was so, for I soon ascertained that the gun wasnot loaded and that its bearer had neither powder nor balls.It turned out that this was a detachment of the local guard,sent out to protect us; it would have been a formidable partyin case of an attack.Continuing our walk over the stone-clad and desolateswells, it suddenly occurred to us that we had become soaccustomed to this sort of desert-walking, with no green orgrowing thing in sight, that it had ceased to seem strange tous. It gave us something like a start, therefore, shortly after,to see, away to the right, blue water forming islands out ofthe hill-tops along the horizon; there was an appearance ofverdure about the edge of the water, and dark clouds sailedover it . There was, however, when we looked steadily, aboutthe whole landscape a shimmer and a shadowy look thattaught us to know that it was a mirage; the rich Nile valleybelow us, with the blue water, the green fields, the black linesof palms, was dimly mirrored in the sky and thrown uponthe desert hills in the distance. We stood where we couldcompare the original picture with the blurred copy.Making our way down the face of the cliff, along someledges, we came upon many grottoes and mummy- pits cut inthe rock, all without sculptures, except one; this had on oneside an arched niche and pilasters from which the arch sprung.The vault ofthe niche had been plastered and painted, and aGreek cross was chiseled in each pilaster; but underneaththe plaster the rock was in ornamental squares, lozenges andcurves in Saracenic style, although it may have been ancientEgyptian. How one religion has whitewashed, and lived onthe remains of another here; the tombs of one age become thetemples of another and the dwellings of a third . On theseledges, and on the desert above, we found bits of pottery.Wherever we have wandered, however far into the desert fromthe river, we never get beyond the limit of broken pottery; andthis evidence of man's presence everywhere, on the most barrenof these high or low plains of stone and sand, speak of age and414 TRACES OF successive ages.of human occupation as clearly as the temples and monuments.There is no virgin foot of desert even; all is worn and used.Human feet have trodden it in every direction for ages. Evenon high peaks where the eagles sit, men have piled stones andmade shelters, perhaps lookouts for enemies, it may be fivehundred, it may be three thousand years ago. There is nowherein Egypt a virgin spot.By moonlight we are creeping under the frowning cliffs ofAboofeyda, and voyage on all night in a buccaneerish fashion;and next day sail by Hadji Kandeel, where travelers disembarkfor Tel el Amarna. The remains of a once vast city strew theplain, but we only survey it through a field- glass. What, wesometimes say in our more modern moments, is one spot morethan another? The whole valley is a sepulchre of dead civilizations; its inhabitants were stowed away, tier on tier, shelf onshelf, in these ledges.However, respect for age sent us in the afternoon to thegrottoes on the north side of the cliff of Sheykh Saïd. Thiswhole curved range, away round to the remains of Antinoë, isfull of tombs. Some that we visited are large and would bevery comfortable dwellings; they had been used for Christianchurches, having been plastered and painted . Traces of onepainting remain-trees and a comical donkey, probably part ofthe story of the flight of the Holy Family into Egypt. Wefound in one the ovals of Cheops, the builder of the greatpyramid, and much good sculpture in the best old manneragricultural scenes, musicians, dancers, beautifully cut, withcareful details and also with spirit. This is very old work,and, even abused as it has been, it is as good as any thetraveler will find in Egypt. This tomb no doubt goes backto the fourth dynasty, and its drawing of animals, cows, birds,and fish is better than we usually see later. In a net inwhich fish are taken, many kinds are represented, and sofaithfully that the species are recognizable; in a marsh is seena hippopotamus, full of life and viciousness, drawn with hismouth stretched asunder wide enough to serve for a menagerie show-bill. There are some curious false doors andTHE GROTTOES AT BENI HASSAN. 415architectural ornaments, like those of the same epoch in thetombs at the pyramids.At night we were at Rhoda, where is one of the largest ofthe Khedive's sugar-factories; and the next morning at BeniHassan, famed, next to Thebes, for its grottoes, which have preserved to us, in painted scenes, so much of the old Egyptianlife. Whoever has seen pictures of these old paintings andread the vast amount of description and inferences concerningthe old Egyptian life , based upon them, must be disappointedwhen he sees them to- day. In the first place they are onlypainted, not cut, and in this respect are inferior to those in thegrottoes of Sheykh Saïd; in the second place, they are sodefaced, as to be with difficulty deciphered, especially thosedepicting the trades.Some of the grottoes are large-sixty feet by forty feet;fine apartments in the rock, high and well lighted by theportal. Architecturally, no tombs are more interesting; someof the ceilings are vaulted, in three sections; they are supported by fluted pillars some like the Doric, and some in thebeautiful lotus style; the pillars, are architraves; and thereare some elaborately wrought false doorways. And all thisgoes to show that, however ancient these tombs are, theyimitated stone buildings already existing in a highly developedarchitecture.Essentially the same subjects are represented in all thetombs; these are the trades, occupations, amusem*nts of thepeople. , Men are blowing glass, working in gold, breakingflax, tending herds (even doctoring animals that are ill),chiseling statues, painting, turning the potter's wheel; thebarber shaves his customer; two men play at draughts; thegames most in favor are wrestling and throwing balls, and inthe latter women play. But what one specially admires isthe honesty of the decorators, which conceals nothing fromposterity; the punishment of the bastinado is again and againrepresented, and even women are subject to it; but respectwas shown for sex; the women was not cast upon the ground,she kneels and takes the flagellation on her shoulders.416 MISTAKEN VIEWS.We saw in these tombs no horses among the many animals;we have never seen the horse in any sculptures except harnessed in a war-chariot; "the horse and his rider " do notappear.There is a scene here which was the subject of a singularmistake, that illustrates the needless zeal of early explorers tofind in everything in Egypt confirmation of the Old Testamentnarrative. A procession, painted on the wall, now known torepresent the advent of an Asiatic tribe into Egypt, perhapsthe Shepherds, in a remote period, was declared to representthe arrival of Joseph's brethren. The tomb, however, wasmade several centuries before the advent of Joseph himself.And even if it were of later date than the event named, weshould not expect to find in it a record of an occurrence ofsuch little significance at that time. We ought not to besurprised at the absence in Egypt of traces of the Israelitishsojourn, and we should not be, if we looked at the event fromthe Egyptian point of view and not from ours. In a view ofthe great drama of the ancient world in the awful Egyptianperspective, the Jewish episode is relegated to its properproportion in secular history. The whole Jewish history, asa worldly phenomenon, occupies its narrow limits. Theincalculable effect upon desert tribes of a long sojourn in ahighly civilized state, the subsequent development of law andof a literature unsurpassed in after times, and the final flowerinto Christianity, it is in the light of all this that we readthe smallest incident of Jewish history, and are in the habit ofmagnifying its contemporary relations. It was the slenderestthread in the days of Egyptian puissance. In the ancientatmosphere of Egypt, events purely historical fall into theirproper proportions. Many people have an idea that theancient world revolved round the Jews, and even hold it as asort of religious faith.It is difficult to believe that the race we see here aredescendants of the active, inventive, joyous people whopainted their life upon these tombs. As we lie all the afternoon before a little village opposite Beni Hassan, I wonderDUST AND ASIES. 417for the hundredth time what it is that saves such miserableplaces from seeming to us as vile as the most wretched abodesof poverty in our own land. Is it because, with an evercheerful sun and a porous soil , this village is not so filthy asa like abode of misery would be with us? Is it that theimagination invests the foreign and the Orient with its ownhues; or is it that our reading, prepossessing our minds, givesthe lie to all our senses? I cannot understand why we arenot more disgusted with such a scene as this. Not to wearyyou with a repetition of scenes sufficiently familiar, let us putthe life of the Egyptian fellah, as it appears at the moment,into a paragraph.Here is a jumble of small mud- hovels, many of them onlyroofed with cornstalks, thrown together without so muchorder as a beaver would use in building a village, distinguishable only from dog- kennels in that they have wooden doors—not distinguishable from them when the door is open and afigure is seen in the aperture. Nowhere any comfort orcleanliness, except that sometimes the inner kennel, of whichthe woman guards the key, will have its floor swept and cleanmatting in one corner. The court about which there are twoor three of these kennels, serves the family for all purposes;there the fire for cooking is built, there are the water-jars, andthe stone for grinding corn; there the chickens and the dogsare; there crouch in the dirt women and men, the womenspinning, making bread, or nursing children, the men invacant idleness. While the women stir about and go forwater, the men will sit still all day long. The amount ofsitting down here in Egypt is inconceivable; you mightalmost call it the feature of the country. No one in thevillage knows anything, either of religion or of the world;no one has any plans; no one exhibits any interest in anything; can any of them have any hopes? From this lifenearly everything but the animal is eliminated. Children,and pretty children, swarm, tumbling about everywhere;besides, nearly every woman has one in her arms.We ought not to be vexed at this constant north wind 27418 OSMAN BEY.which baffles us, for they say it is necessary to the properfilling out of the wheat heads. The boat drifts about all dayin a mile square, having passed the morning on a sand- spitwhere the stupidity and laziness of the crew placed it; andwe have leisure to explore the large town of Minieh, whichlies prettily along the river. Here is a costly palace, which Ibelieve has never been occupied by the Khedive, and a gardenattached, less slovenly in condition than those of countrypalaces usually are. The sugar-factory is furnished with.much costly machinery, which could not have been boughtfor less than half a million of dollars. Many of the privatehouses give evidences of wealth in their highly ornamenteddoorways and Moorish arches, but the mass of the town is ofthe usual sort here-tortuous lanes in which weary hundredsof people sit in dirt, poverty, and resignation . We met in thestreet and in the shops many coal-black Nubians and negroes,smartly dressed in the recent European style, having animpudent air, who seemed to be persons of wealth and consideration here. In the course of our wanderings I came toa large public building, built in galleries about an open court,and unwittingly in my examination of it, stumbled into theapartment of the Governor, Osman Bey, who was givingaudience to all comers. Justice is still administered inpatriarchal style; the door is open to all; rich and poor werecrowding in, presenting petitions and papers of all sorts, andamong them a woman preferred a request. Whether justicewas really done did not appear, but Oriental hospitality is atleast unfailing. Before I could withdraw, having discoveredmy blunder, the governor welcomed me with all politenessand gave me a seat beside him. We smiled at each other inArabic and American, and came to a perfect understandingon coffee and cigarettes.The next morning we are slowly passing the Copt conventof Gebel e' Tayr, and expecting the appearance of the swimming Christians. There is a good opportunity to board us,but no one appears. Perhaps because it is Sunday andthese Christians do not swim on Sunday. No. We learnA MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM. 419from a thinly clad and melancholy person who is regardingus from the rocks that the Khedive has forbidden this disagreeable exhibition of muscular Christianity. It was quitetime. But thus, one by one, the attractions of the Nilevanish.99 What a Sunday! But not an exceptional day. " Oh dear,"says madame, in a tone of injury, " here's another fine day! "Although the north wind is strong, the air is soft, caressing,elastic.More and more is forced upon us the contrast of thescenery of Upper and Lower Egypt. Here it is not simplythat the river is wider and the mountains inore removed andthe arable land broader; the lines are all straight and horizontal, the mountain- ranges are level-topped, parallel to theflat prairies-at sunset a low level of white limestone hills inthe east looked exactly like a long line of fence whitewashed.In Upper Egypt, as we have said, the plains roll, the hills arebroken, there are pyramidal mountains, and evidences ofupheaval and disorder. But these wide sweeping and majestic lines have their charm; the sunsets and sunrises are insome respects finer than in Nubia; the tints are not sodelicate, the colors not so pure, but the moister atmosphereand clouds make them more brilliant and various. Thedawn, like the after-glow, is long; the sky burns half roundwith rose and pink, the color mounts high up. The sunsetsare beyond praise, and always surprises. Last night thereflection in the east was of a color unseen before-almost apurple below and a rose above; and the west glowed for anhour in changing tints. The night was not less beautifulwe have a certain comfort in contrasting both with March inNew England. It was summer; the Nile slept, the moonhalf-full, let the stars show; and as we glided swiftly down,the oars rising and falling to the murmured chorus of therowers, there were deep shadows under the banks, and thestately palms, sentinelling the vast plain of moonlight overwhich we passed, the great silence of an Egyptian nightseemed to remove us all into dreamland. The land was420 TWENTY MILES OF BATHERS!still, except for the creak of an occasional shadoof worked bysome wise man who thinks it easier to draw water in thenight than in the heat of the day, or an aroused wolfish dog,or a solitary bird piping on the shore.Thus we go, thus we stay, in the delicious weather, encouragednow and again by a puff of southern wind, but held back fromour destination by some mysterious angel of delay. But one daythe wind comes, the sail is distended, the bow points downstream, and we move at the dizzy rate of five miles an hour.It is a day of incomparable beauty. We see very little laboralong the Nile; the crops are maturing. But the whole population comes to the river, to bathe, to sit in the shallows, to sit onthe bank. All the afternoon we pass groups, men, women, children, motionless, the picture of idleness. There they are, hourafter hour, in the sun. Women, coming for water, put downtheir jars, and bathe and frolic in the grateful stream . In somedistant reaches of the river there are rows of women along theshore, exactly like the birds which stand in the shallow placesor sun themselves on the sand. There are more than twentymiles of bathers, of all sexes and ages.When at last we come to a long sand-reef, dotted with storks,cranes and pelicans, the critic says he is glad to see somethingwith feathers on it.We are in full tide of success and puffed up with confidence:it is perfectly easy to descend the Nile. All the latter part ofthe afternoon we are studying the False Pyramid of Maydoon,that structure, older than Cheops, built, like all the primitivemonuments, in degrees, as the Tower of Babel was, as theChaldean temples were. It lifts up, miles away from the river,only a broken mass from the debris at its base. We leave itbehind. We shall be at Bedreshayn , for Memphis, before daylight. As we turn in, the critic says,The wind"We've got the thing in our own hands now. "Alas! the Lord reached down and took it out.chopped suddenly, and blew a gale from the north. At breakfasttime we were waltzing round opposite the pyramids of Dashoor,liable to go aground on islands and sandbars, and unable to makeRUINS OF MEMPHIS. 421the land. Determined not to lose the day, we anchored, tookthe sandal, had a long pull, against the gale, to Bedreshayn, andmounted donkeys for the ruins of ancient Memphis.When Herodotus visited Memphis, probably about four hundredand fifty years before Christ, it was a great city. He makesspecial mention of its temple of Vulcan, whose priests gave hima circ*mstantial account of the building of the city by Menes,the first Pharaoh. Four hundred years later, Diodorus found itmagnificent; about the beginning of the Christian era, Strabosays it was next in size to Alexandria. Although at the end ofthe twelfth century it had been systematically despoiled tobuild Cairo, an Arab traveler says that, " its ruins occupy a spacehalf a day's journey every way, " and that its wonders could notbe described. Temples, palaces, gardens, villas, acres ofcommondwellings-the city covered this vast plain with its splendor andits squalor.The traveler now needs a guide to discover a vestige, a stonehere and there, of this once most magnificent capital. Herecame Moses and Aaron, from the Israelitish settlement in theDelta, from Zoan (Tanis) probably, to beg Menephtah to let theJews depart; here were performed the miracles of the Exodus.This is the Biblical Noph, against which burned the wrath ofthe prophets. " No (Heliopolis, or On) shall be rent asunder,and Noph shall have distresses daily. " The decree was "published in Noph ": -" Noph shall be waste and desolate without aninhabitant; " " I will cause their images to cease out of Noph. "The images have ceased, the temples have either been removedor have disappeared under the deposits of inundations; youwould ride over old Memphis without knowing it, but the inhabitants have returned to this fertile and exuberant plain. It isonly in the long range of pyramids and the great necropolis inthe desert that you can find old Memphis.The superabundant life of the region encountered us at once.At Bedreshayn is a ferry, and its boats were thronged, chieflyby women, coming and going, and always with a load of grainor other produce on the head. We rode round the town on anelevated dyke, lined with palms, and wound onward over a flat,422 DEPARTED with wheat and barley, to Mitrahenny, a little village in asplendid palm-grove. This marks the central spot ofthe ruinsof old Memphis. Here are some mounds, here are found fragments of statues and cut stones, which are preserved in a temporary shelter. And here, lying on its side, in a hollowfrom whichthe water was just subsiding, is a polished colossal statue ofRameses II.-the Pharaoh who left more monuments of lessachievements than any other " swell " of antiquity. The face ishandsome, as all his statues are, and is probably conventionalized like our pictures of George Washington, or Napoleon's bustsofhimself. I confess to a feeling of perfect satisfaction at seeinghis finely chiseled nose rooting in the mud.This some mounds some fragments of stone, and the statue,--was all we saw of Memphis. But I should like to have spenta day in this lovely grove, which was carpeted with the only turfI saw in Egypt; reclining upon the old mounds in the shade, andpretending to think of Menes and Moses and Menephtah; and ofRhampsinitus, the king who " descended alive into the placewhich the Greeks call Hades, and there played at dice with Ceres,and sometimes won, and other times lost, " and of the treasurehouse he built here; and whether, as Herodotus believed , Helen,the beautiful cause of the, Iliad really once dwelt in a palacehere, and whether Homer ever recited his epic in these streets.We go on over the still rich plain to the village of Sakkarah-chiefly babies and small children. The cheerful life of thisprarie fills us with delight-flocks of sheep, herds of buffaloes,trains of dromedaries, hundreds of laborers of both sexes in thefields, children skylarking about; on every path are women,always with a basket on the head, their blue cotton gown (theonly article of dress except a head- shawl, ) open in front, blowingback so as to show their figures as they walk.When we reach the desert we are in the presence of deathperhaps the most mournful sight on this earth is a necropolis in thedesert, savage, sand-drifted , plundered, all its mounds dug overand over. We ride along at the bases of the pyramids. I stopat one, climb over the debris at its base, and break off a fragment ofstone. The pyramid is of crumbling limestone, and, builtTOMBS OF the SACRED BULLS. 423in stages or degrees, like that of Maydoon; it is slowly becoming an unsightly heap. And it is time. This is believed to bethe oldest structure in the world, except the Tower of Babel.Itseems to have been the sepulchre of Keken, a king of the seconddynasty. At this period hieroglyphic writing was developed,but the construction and ornamentation of the doorway of thepyramid exhibit art in its infancy. This would seem to showthat the Egyptians did not emigrate from Asia with the developedand highly perfected art found in the sculptures of the tombs ofthe fourth, fifth, and sixth dynasties, as some have supposed,but that there was a growth, which was arrested later.But no inference in regard to old Egypt is safe; a discoverytomorrow may upset it. Statues recently found, representingpersons living in the third dynasty, present a different type ofrace from that shown in statues of the fourth and fifth dynasties.So that, in that period in which one might infer a growth of art,there may have been a change of the dominating race.The first great work of Mariette Bey in Egypt—and it is amonument of his sagacity, enthusiasm, and determination, was theunearthing, in this waste of Memphis, the lost Serapeum and theApis Mausoleum, the tombs of the sacred bulls. The remains ofthe temple are again covered with sand; but the visitor canexplore the Mausoluem. He can walk, taper in hand, throughendless galleries, hewn in the rock, passing between rows ofgigantic granite sarcophagi, in which once rested the mummiesof the sacred bulls. Living, the bull was daintily fed-the Nilewater unfiltered was thought to be too fattening for him--anddevotedly worshipped; and dying, he was entombed in asepulchre as magnificent as that of kings, and his adorers linedthe walls of his tomb with votive offerings. It is partly fromthese stela, or slabs with inscriptions, that Mariette Bey hasadded so much to our knowledge of Egyptian history.Nearthe Serapeum is perhaps the most elegant tomb in Egypt,the tomb of Tih, who lived in the fifth dynasty, some time laterthan Cheops, but when hippopotami abounded in the river in frontof his farm, Although Tih was a priest, he was a gentleman ofelegant tastes, an agriculturist, a sportsman. He had a model424 A SECOND, as you may see by the buildings and by the thousanddetails of good management here carved. His tomb does himgreat credit. In all the work of later times there is nothing sogood as this sculpture, ' so free, so varied, so beautiful; it promises everything. Tih even had, what we do not expect in peopleof that early time, humor; you are sure of it from some of thepictures here. He must have taken delight in decorating histomb, and have spent, altogether, some pleasant years in itbefore he occupied it finally; so that he had become accustomedto staying here.But his rule was despotic, it was that of the " stick. " Egyptians have never changed in this respect, as we have remarkedbefore. They are now, as then, under the despotism of somenotion of governance-divine or human-despotic and fateful.The "stick " is as old as the monarchy; it appears in these tombs;as to day, nobody then worked or paid taxes without its application.The sudden arrest of Egyptian art was also forced upon usnext day, in a second visit to the pyramids of Geezeh. We spentmost of the day in the tombs there. In some of them we sawthe ovals of all the kings of the fourth dynasty, many of themperfect and fresh in color. As to drawing, cutting, variety, liveliness of attitude and color, there is nothing better, little so good,in tombs of recent date. We find almost every secular subjectin the early tombs that is seen in the latest. In thousands ofyears, the Egyptians scarcely changed or made any progress.The figures of men and animals are better executed in these oldtombs than in the later. Again, these tombs are free from theendless repetitions of gods and of offerings to them. Thelife ofthe people represented is more natural, less superstitious;common events are naïvely portrayed, with the humorous unconsciousness of a simple age; art has thought it not unworthy itsskill to represent the fact in one tomb, that men acted as midwives to cows, in the dawn of history.While welay at Geezeh we visited one of the chicken-hatchingestablishments for which the Egyptians have been famous froma remote period. It was a very unpretending affair, in a dirtyAN ARTIFICIAL MOTHER. 425suburb ofthe town. We were admitted into a low mud-building,and into a passage with ovens on each side. In these ovens theeggs are spread upon mats, and the necessary fire is made underneath. The temperature is at 100 ° to 108° Fahrenheat. Eachoven has a hole in the center, through which the naked attendantcrawls to turn the eggs from time to time. The process requiresusually twenty-one days, but some eggs hatch on the twentieth.The eggs are supplied by the peasants who usually receive, without charge, half as many chickens as they bring eggs. Aboutone third of the eggs do not hatch. The hatching is only performed about three months in the year, during the spring.In the passage, before one of the ovens, was a heap of softchickens, perhaps half a bushel, which the attendant scrapedtogether whenever they attempted to toddle off. We had thepleasure oftaking up some handfuls ofthem. We also looked intothe ovens, where there was a stir of life, and were permitted tohold some eggs while the occupants kicked off the shell.I don't know that a plan will ever be invented by which eggs,as well as chickens, will be produced without the interventionof the hen. If one could be, it would leave the hen so muchmore time to scratch-it would relieve her from domestic caresso that she could take part in public affairs. The hen in Egyptis only partially emancipated, But since she is relieved fromsetting, I do not know that she is any better hen. She lays very small eggs.This ends what I have to say about the hen. We have cometo Cairo, and the world is again before us,



THAT excitement there is in adjacency to a great city!WHATo hear its inarticulate hum, to feel the thrill of itsmyriads, the magnetism of a vast society! How thepulse quickens at the mere sight of multitudes of buildings, andthe overhanging haze of smoke and dust that covers a little fromthe sight ofthe angels the great human struggle and folly. Howimpatient one is to dive into the ocean of his fellows.The stir of life has multiplied every hour in the past two days.The river swarms with boats, the banks are vocal with labor,traffic, merriment. This morning early we are dropping downpast huge casernes full of soldiers-the bank is lined with them,thousands of them, bathing and washing their clothes, theirgabble filling the air. We see again the lofty mosque of Mohamed Ali, the citadel of Saladin, the forest of minarets abovethe brown roofs of the town. We pass the isle of Rhoda and theample palaces of the Queen- Mother. We moor at Gezerehamid a great shoal of dahabeëhs, returned from High Egypt,deserted of their passengers, flags down, blinds closed-a spectacle to fill one with melancholy that so much pleasure is over.The dahabeëhs usually discharge their passengers at Gezereh,above the bridge. If the boat goes below with baggage it issubject to a port- duty, as if it were a traveler,-besides the taxfor passing the draw-bridge. We decide to remain some days onour boat, because it is comfortable, and because we want topostpone the dreaded breaking up of housekeeping, packing upour scattered effects, and moving. Having obtained permission 426ABD-EL-ATTI DISCOURSES. 427to moor at the government dock below Kasr-el- Nil, we dropdown there.The first person to greet us there is Aboo Yusef, the owner.Behind him comes Habib Bagdadli, the little Jew partner.There is always that in his mien which says, " I was really bornin Bagdad, but I know you still think I am a Jewfrom Algiers.No, gentlemens, you wrong a man to whom reputation is everything." But he is glad to see his boat safe; he expresses as muchpleasure as one can throw from an eye with a cast in it. AbooYusefis radiant. He is attired gorgeously, in a new suit, fromfresh turban to red slippers, on the profits of the voyage. Hisrobe is silk, his sash is cashmere. He overflows with complimentary speech."Allah be praised, I see you safe. ”"We have reason to be grateful. ""And that you had a good journey. ""A perfect journey. ""We have been made desolate by your absence; thank God,you have enjoyed the winter. ""I suppose you are glad to see the boat back safe also? ""That is nothing, not to mention it, I not think of it; thereturn of the boat safe, that is nothing. I only think that youare safe. But it is a good boat. You will say it is the first-classofboats? And she goes up the cataract all right. Did I notsay she go up the cataract? Abd-el- Atti he bear me witness. ""You did. You said so. Habib said so also. Was there anyreport here in Cairo that we could not go up,""Mashallah. Such news. The boat was lost in the cataract;the reïs was drowned. For the loss of the boat I did not care;only if you were safe. ""Did you hear that the cataract reïses objected to take usup? ""What rascals! " They always make the traveler some trouble.But, Allah forgive us all, the head reïs is dead. Not so, Abd-elAtti? ""What, the old reïs that we said good-bye to only a littlewhile ago at Assouan? "428 CAIRO AGAIN." Him dead, " says Abd-el -Atti. " I have this morning someconversation with a tradin' boat from the Cataract. Him deadshortly after we leave."It was the first time it had ever occurred to me that one ofthese tough old Bedaween could die in the ordinary manner.But alas his spirit was too powerful for his frame. We havenot in this case the consolation of feeling that his loss is ourgain; for there are plenty more like him at the First Cataract.He took money from Aboo Yusef for not taking us up the Cataract, and he took money from us for taking us up. His accountis balanced. He was an impartial man. Peace to his coloredashes.Aboo Yusef and the little Jew took leave with increased demonstrations of affection , and repeated again and again their joythat we had ascended the Cataract and returned safe. The Jew,as I said, had a furtive look, but Aboo is open as the day. He isan Arab you would trust. I can scarcely believe that it was heand his partner who sent the bribe to the reïs of the Cataract toprevent our going up.As we ride to town through the new part, the city looksexceedingly bright and attractive; the streets are very broad;the handsome square houses-ornamented villas, with balconies, pillared piazzas, painted with lively figures and inbizarre patterns-stand behind walls overgrown with theconvolvulus, and in the midst of gardens; plats in the centerof open spaces and at the angles of streets are gay with flowersin bloom-chiefly scarlet geraniums. The town wears aspring aspect, and would be altogether bright but for thedust which overlays everything, houses, streets, foliage. Noamount of irrigation can brighten the dust-powdered trees.When we came to Cairo last fall, fresh from Europeancities, it seemed very shabby. Now that we come from UpperEgypt, with our eyes trained to eight hundred miles of mudhovels, Cairo is magnificent. But it is Cairo. There are justas many people squatting in the dust of the highways aswhen we last saw them, and they have the air of not havingmoved in three months. We ride to Shepherd's Hotel, thereA QUESTION.429are twenty dragomans for every tourist who wants to go toSyria, there is the usual hurry of arrival and departure, andno one to be found; we call at the consul's: it is not his hour;we ride through the blindest ways to the bankers, in theRosetti Gardens (don't imagine there is any garden there),they do no business from twelve to three. It is impossible toaccomplish anything in Cairo without calm delay. And,falling into the mode, we find ourselves sauntering throughone of the most picturesque quarters, the bazaar of KhánKhaléel, feasting the eye on the Oriental spendors of silks,embroidered stuffs, stiff with gold and silver, sown withpearls, antique Persian brasses, old arms of the followers ofSaladin. How cool, how quiet it is. All the noises are soft.Noises enough there are, a babel of traffic, jostling, pushing,clamoring; and yet we have a sense of quiet in it all. Thereis no rudeness, no angularity, no glare of sun.At times youfeel an underflow of silence. I know no place so convenientfor meditation as the recesses of these intricate bazaars.Their unlikeness to the streets of other cities is mainly in theabsence of any hard pavement. From the moment you comeinto the Mooskee, you strike a silent way, no noise of wheelsor hoofs, nor footfalls of the crowd. It is this absence offootfall-patter which is always heard in our streets, that givesus the impression here of the underflow of silence.Returning, through the Ezbekeëh Park and through thenew streets, we are glad we are not to judge the manhood ofEgypt by the Young Egypt we meet here, nor the future ofEgypt by the dissolute idlers of Cairo and Alexandria. FromCairo to Wady Halfeh we have seen men physically welldeveloped, fine specimens of their race, and better in Nubiathan in Egypt Proper; but these youths are feeble, and ofunclean appearance, even in their smart European dress.They are not unlike the effeminate and gilded youth of Italythat one sees in the cities, or Parisians of the same class.Egypt, which needed a different importation, has added mostof the vices of Europe to its own; it is noticeable that theItalians, who emigrate elsewhere little, come here in great430 VARIOUS OPINIONS.numbers, and men and women alike take kindly to thisloose feebleness. French as well as Italians adopt themselves easily to Eastern dissoluteness. The French havenever shown in any part of the globe any prejudice against amingling of races. The mixture here of the youths of theLatin races and the worn-out Orientals, who are a littlepolished by a lacquer of European vice, is not a good omenfor Egypt. Happily such youths are feeble and, I trust, notto be found outside the two large cities.The great question in Egypt, among foreigners and observers (there is no great question among the common people) , isabout the Khedive, Ismaïl Pasha, his policy and his real intentions with regard to the country. You will hear three distinctopinions; one from devout Moslems, another from the English,and a third from the Americans. The strict and conservativeMoslems like none of the changes and innovations, and expressnot too much confidence in the Khedive's religion. He hasbought pictures and statues for his palaces, he has marbleimages of himself, he has set up an equestrian statue in thestreet; all this is contrary to the religion. He introducesEuropean manners and costumes, every government employé isobliged to wear European dress, except the tarboosh. Whatdoes he want with such a great army; why are the taxes sohigh, and growing higher every day?With the Americans in Cairo, as a rule, the Khedive is popular; they sympathize with his ambition, and think that he hasthe good of Egypt at heart; almost uniformly they defend him.The English, generally, distrust the Khedive and criticise hisevery movement. Scarcely ever have I heard Englishmenspeak well of the Khedive and his policy. They express awant of confidence in the sincerity of his efforts to suppress theslave-trade, for one thing. How much the fact that Americanofficers are preferred in the Khedive's service has to do withthe English and the American estimate, I do not know; theAmericans are naturally preferred over all others, for in case ofa European complication over Egypt they would have noentangling alliances.THE KHEDIVE. 431The Americans point to what has actually been accomplishedby the present Viceroy, the radical improvements in the direction of a better civilization, improvements which already changethe aspect of Egypt to the most casual observer. There are therailroads, which intersect the Delta in all directions, and extendover two hundred and fifty miles up the Nile, and the adventurous iron track which is now following the line of the telegraphto distant Kartoom. There are the canals, the Sweet-Waterthat runs from Cairo and makes life on the Isthmus possible,and the network of irrigating canals and system of ditches,which have not only transformed the Delta, but have changedits climate, increasing enormously the rainfall. No one whohas not seen it can have any conception of the magnitude ofthis irrigation by canals which all draw water from the Nile, norof the immense number of laborers necessary to keep the canalsin repair. Talk of the old Pharaohs, and their magnificentcanals, projected or constructed, and their vaunted expeditionsof conquest into Central Africa! Their achievements, takethem all together, are not comparable to the marvels the Khedive is producing under our own eyes, in spite of a peopleignorant, superstitious, reluctant. He does not simply makeraids into Africa: he occupies vast territories, he has absolutelystopped the Nile slave-trade, he has converted the great slavetraders into his allies, by making it more their interest to' develope legitimate commerce than to deal in flesh and blood;he has permanently opened a region twice as large as Egypt tocommercial intercourse; he sends explorers and scientific expeditions into the heart of Africa. It is true that he wastesmoney, that he is robbed and cheated by his servants, but heperseveres, and behold the results. Egypt is waking out of itssleep, it is annexing territory, and population by millions, it isbecoming a power. And Ismaïl Pasha is the center and springofthe whole movement.Look at Cairo! Since the introduction of gas, the openingof broad streets, the tearing down of some of the worst rookeries, the admission of sun and air, Cairo is exempt from theold epidemics, the general health is improved, and even that432 SOLOMON AND THE VICEROY.scourge, ophthalmia, has diminished. You know his decreeforbidding early marriages; you know he has established andencourages schools for girls; you see what General Stone isdoing in the education of the common soldiers, and in his training of those who show any aptitude in engineering, draughting,and the scientific accomplishments of the military profession.Thus the warmest admirers of the Khedive speak. His despotism, which is now the most absolute in the world, perhaps,and least disputed, is referred to as a " personal government. "And it is difficult to see how under present circ*mstances itcould be anything else. There is absolutely in Egypt nomaterial for anything else. The Khedive has annually summoned for several years, a sort of parliament of the chief men ofEgypt, for information and consultation. At first it was difficultto induce the members to say a word, to give any informationor utter an opinion . It is a new thing in a despotic government, the shadow even of a parliament.An English gentleman in Cairo, and a very intelligent man,gives the Khedive credit for nothing but a selfish desire toenrich himself, to establish his own family, and to enjoy thetraditional pleasures of the Orient."But he is suppressing the slave- trade. ""He is trying to make England believe so.Slaves still cometo Cairo; not so many down the Nile, but by the desert. Ifound a slave-den in some desert tombs once over the otherside the river; horrible treatment of women and children; acaravan came from Darfour by way of Assiout. ""But that route is cut off by the capture of Darfour. ""Well, you'll see; slaves will come if they are wanted.look at the Khedive's harem! "Why,"He hasn't so many wives as Solomon, who had seven hundred; the Khedive has only four. ""Yes, but he has more concubines; Solomon kept only threehundred, the Khedive has four hundred and fifty, and perhapsnearer five hundred. Some of them are beautiful Circassiansfor whom it is said he paid as much as £2000 and even£3000 " sterling.THE KHEDIVE'S FAMILY EXPENSES. 433"I suppose that is an outside price."' Of course, but think of the cost of keeping them. Then,each of his four wives has her separate palace and establishment. Rather an expensive family. ""Almost as costly as the royal family of England. ""That's another affair; to say nothing of the difference ofincome. The five hundred, more or less, concubines are underthe charge of the Queen-mother, but they have carte blanche inindulgence in jewels, dress, and all that. They wear the mostcostly Paris modes. They spend enormous sums in pearls anddiamonds. They have their palaces refurnished whenever thewhim seizes them, re-decorated in European style. Wheredoes the money come from? You can see that Egypt is taxedto death. I heard to-day that the Khedive was paying seventeen per cent. for money, money borrowed to pay the intereston his private debts. What does he do with the money heraises? ""Spends a good deal of it on his improvements, canals,railroads, on his army. ""I think he runs in debt for his improvements. Look again athis family. He has something like forty palaces, costing fromone half-million to a million dollars each; some ofthem, whichhe built, he has never occupied, many of them are empty, manyof those of his predecessors, which would lodge a thousandpeople, are going to decay; and yet he is building new onesall the time. There are two or three in process of erection onthe road to the pyramids.""Perhaps they are for his sons or for his high officers? VictorEmanuel, whose treasury is in somewhat the condition of theKhedive's, has a palace in every city of Italy, and yet he buildsmore. ""If the Khedive is building for his children, I give it up.He has somewhere between twenty and thirty acknowledgedchildren. But he does give away palaces and houses. Whenhe has done with a pretty slave, he may give her, with a palaceor a fine house here in town, to a favorite officer. I can showyou houses here that were taken away from their owners, at a28434 ANOTHER JOSEPH.price fixed by the Khedive and not by the owner, because theViceroy wanted them to give away with one or another of hisconcubines. ""I suppose that is Oriental custom.""I thought you Americans defended the Khedive on accountof his progressive spirit. ""He is a man who is accomplishing wonders, trammelled ashe is by usages thousands of years old, which appear monstrous to us, but are to him as natural as any other Orientalcondition. Yet I confess that he stands in very contradictorylights. If he knew it, he could do the greatest service toEgypt by abolishing his harem of concubines, converting itinto-I don't know what-a convent, or a boarding-school, ora milliner's shop, or an establishment for canning fruit-andthen set the example of living, openly, with one wife. ”"Wait till he does. And you talk about the condition ofEgypt! Every palm-tree, and every sakiya is taxed, andthe tax has doubled within a few years. The taxes are nowfrom one pound and a half to three pounds an acre on alllands not owned by him. ”"In many cases, I know this is not a high tax (comparedwith taxes elsewhere) considering the yield of the land, andthe enormous cost of the irrigating canals.""It is high for such managers as the fellahs. But they willnot have to complain long. The Khedive is getting into hisown hands all the lands of Egypt. He owns I think a thirdof it now, and probably half of it is in his family; and this ismuch the better land."66'History repeats itself in Egypt. Ile is following the example of Joseph who, you know, taking advantage of thefamine, wrung all the land, except that in possession of thepriests, from the people, and made it over to Pharaoh; byJoseph's management the king owned, before the famine wasover, not only all the land, but all the money, all the cattle,and all the people of Egypt. And he let the land to them fora fifth of its increase.""I don't know that it is any better because Egypt is used toit . Joseph was a Jew. The Khedive pretends to be influencedPERSONAL GOVERNMENT. 435by the highest motives, the elevation of the condition of thepeople, the regeneration of Egypt. "" I think he is sincerely trying to improve Egypt and theEgyptians. Of course a despot, reared in Oriental prejudices,is slow to see that you can't make a nation except by makingmen; that you can't make a rich nation unless individualshave free scope to accumulate property. I confess that thechief complaint I heard up the river was, that no one dared toshow that he had any money, or to engage in extensivebusiness, for fear he would be " squeezed. ""So he would be. The Khedive has some sixteen sugarfactories, worked by forced labor, very poorly paid. Theyought to be very profitable. ""They are not. ""Well, he wants more money, at any rate. I havejust heardthat he is resorting to a forced loan, in the form of bonds.A land-owner is required to buy them in the proportionof one dollar and a half for each acre he owns; and he is toreceive seven per cent. interest on the bonds. In Cairo aperson is required to take these bonds in a certain proportionon his personal property. And it is said that the bonds arenot transferable, and that they will be worthless to the heirs.I heard of this new dodge from a Copt.""I suppose the Khedive's friends would say that he istrying to change Egypt in a day, whereas it is the work ofgenerations. "When we returned to the dahabeëh we had a specimen of"personal government. " Abd- el- Atti was standing on thedeck, slipping his beads, and looking down."What has happened? ""Ahman, been took him.""Who took him? "" Police, been grab him first time he go ' shore, and lockhim up.""What had he been doing? ""Nothing he been done; I send him up town of errand;police catch him right out there.""What for?"436 THE DOCK AT CAIRO."Take him down to Soudan to work; the vice-royal heissue an order for the police to catch all the black fellows inCairo, and take ' em to the Soudan, down to Gondokora forwhat I know, to work the land there.""But Ahman is our servant; he can't be seized. "" Oh, I know, Ahman belong to me, he was my slave till Igive him liberty; I go to get him out directly. These people know me, I get him off. ""But if you had no influence with the police, Ahman wouldbe dragged off to Soudan to work in a cotton or rice field? ""Lots of black fellows like him sent off. But I get himback, don't you have worry. What the vice- royal to do withmy servant-I don't care if he Kin' of Constantinople! "Sure enough, early in the evening the handsome Abyssinianboy came back, none the worse, except for a thorough scare,eyes and teeth shining, and bursting into his usual heartylaugh upon allusion to his capture."Police tyeb?"“Moosh- tyeb ” (“ bad ”), with an explosion of merriment.The boy hadn't given himself much uneasiness, for he regardshis master as his Providence.We are moored at the dock and below the lock of the SweetWater Canal which runs to Ismailia. A dredge-boat lies in theentrance, and we have an opportunity of seeing how governmentlabor is performed; we can understand why it is that so manylaborers are needed, and that the great present want of Egypt isstout and willing arms.In the entrance of the canal and in front of the lock is a flatboat upon which are fifteen men. They have two iron scoops,which would hold about a gallon each; to each is attached along pole and a rope. Two men jab the pole down and hold thepot on the bottom, while half a dozen pull leisurely on the rope,with a "yah-sah " or others chorus, and haul in the load; whenit comes up, a man scrapes out the mud with his hand, sometimesnot getting more than two quarts. It is very restful to watchtheir unexhausting toil. It takes several minutes to capture apot of sand. There are fifteen men at this spoon-work, but oneRAISING MUD. 437scoop is only kept going at a time. After it is emptied, the menstop and look about, converse a little, and get ready for anothereffort, standing meantime in liquid mud, ankle deep. Whenthey have rested, over goes the scoop again, and the men standto the rope, and pull feebly, but only at intervals, that is whenthey sing the response tothe line ofthe leader. The programmeof singing and putting is something like this:Salee ah nadd (voice of the leader).Yalee, halee (chorus, pull altogether).Salee ah nadd.Yalee, halee (pull).Salee ah nadd.Yalee, halee (pull).And the outcome of three or four minutes of hauling and noiseenough to raise a ton, is about a quart of mud!The river panorama is always varied and entertaining, and weare of a divided mind between a lazy inclination to sit here andwatch the busy idleness of the population, or address ourselvesto the much that still remains to be seen in Cairo. I ought tospeak, however, of an American sensation on the river. This isa little steam-yacht-fifty feet long by seven and a half broad—which we saw up the Nile, where it attracted more attentionalong the banks than anything else this season. I call it American, because it carries the American flag and is owned by aNew-York art student, Mr. Anderson, and an English-American,Mr. Medler; but the yacht was built in London, and shipped ona large steamboat to Alexandria. It is the first steam-vessel, Ibelieve, carrying anything except Egyptian (or Turkish) colorsthat has ever been permitted to ascend the Nile. We took atrip on it one fine morning up to Helwán, and enjoyed the animation of its saucy speed. When put to its best, it makeseighteen miles an hour; but life would not be as long on it as itis on a dahabeëh. At Helwán are some hot sulphur-springs,famous and much resorted to in the days of the Pharaohs, andjust now becoming fashionable again.Our days pass we can hardly say how, while we wait for theproper season for Syria, and regard the invincible obstacles that438 POPULAR SUPERSTITIONS.debar us from the longed- for desert journey to Sinai and ArabiaPetra. The bazaars are always a refuge from the heat, a neverfailing entertainment. We spend hours in lounging throughthem. We lunch at the shops of the sweatmeat makers, onbread, pistachio-nuts, conserve of roses, I know not what, andNile-water, with fingans of coffee fetched hot and creamy fromthe shop near by. We give a copper to an occasional beggar:for beggars are few in the street, and these are either blindor very poor, or derweeshes; and to all these, being regarded asAllah's poor, the Moslems give cheerfully, for charity is a partof their religion . We like also to stand at the doors of theartisans. There is a street where all the workmen are stillmaking the old flint- lock guns and pistols, and the firearms withthe flaring blunderbuss muzzles, as if the object was to scatterthe charge, and hit a great many people but to kill none. Ithink the peace society would do well to encourage this kindof gun. There are shops also where a man sits before a heap offlint-chalk, chipping the stone with a flat iron mallet, and formingthe flints for the antiquated locks.We happen to come often in our wanderings, the distinction.being a matter of luck, upon a very interesting old city-gate ofone of the quarters. The gate itself is a wooden one of twoleaves, crossed with iron bands fastened with heavy spikes, andnot remarkable except as an illustration of one of the popularsuperstitions ofthe Arabs. The wood is driven full ofnails, bitsof rags flutter on it, and human teeth are crowded under theiron bands. It is believed that if a person afflicted with headache will drive a nail into this door he will never have the headache again. Other ills are relieved by other offerings, bits ofrag, teeth, etc. It would seem to be a pretty sure cure fortoothache to leave the tooth in this gate. The Arabs are calledthe most superstitious of peoples, they wear charms against theevil-eye ( “ charm from the eye of girl, sharper than a spike; charmfrom the eye of boy, more painful than a whip ") , and they havea thousand absurd practices. Yet we can match most ofthem inChristian communities.How patiently all the people work, and wait. Complaints areLEAVE-TAKING. 439rare. The only reproof I ever received was from a donkey- boy,whom I had kept waiting late one evening at the Hotel Nil.When I roused him from his sleep on the ground, he asked,with an accent of weariness, " how much clock you got? "By the twenty-third day of March it is getting warm; thethermometer is 81 °. It is not simply the heat, but the Khámaseen, the south wind, the smoky air, the dust in the city, thelanguor. To-day it rained a few drops, and looked threatening,just as it does in a hot summer day at home. The outskirts ofCairo are enveloped in dust, and the heat begins to simmer overthe palaces and gardens. The travelers are leaving. The sharptraders, Jews from Bagdad, Syrians, Jews from Constantinople,Greeks, Armenians from Damascus, all sorts, are packing uptheir goods, in order to meet the traveler and fleece him again inJerusalem, in Beyrout, in Damascus, in Smyrna, on the GoldenHorn. In the outskirts, especially on the open grounds by thecanal, are the coffee-booths and dance-shanties-rows of the disreputable. The life, always out of doors even in the winter, isnow more flamboyantly displayed in these open and verandaheddwellings; there is a yielding to the relaxation ofsummer. Wehear at night, aswe sit onthe deck of our dahabeëh, the throbbing of the darabookah-drum and the monotonous song of the dissolute ones.



THE Khedive and his court, if it may be so called, are nothedged in by any formidable barriers; but there are peculiarities of etiquette. When his Highness gives a grandball and public reception, of course only the male members ofhis household are present, only the men ofthe Egyptian society;it would in fact be a male assembly but for the foreign ladiesvisiting or residing in the city. Of course there cannot be anysuch thing as " society " under such circ*mstances; and as thereare no women to regulate the ball invitations, the assembly is"mixed. " There is no such thing as reciprocity with the Arabs.and Turks; they are willing to meet the wives or the femalefriends ofall foreigners; they never show their own.If a lady visiting Cairo wishes to visit one of the royal harems,it is necessary that her husband or some gentleman of her party,should first be presented to the Khedive. After this ceremony,notice is received through the chamberlain of the Viceroy that thelady will be received on such a day and hour, in a palace named,by her Highness So So. Which Highness? That you can nevertell before the notice is received. It is a matter of royal convenience at the time. In a family so large and varied as that oftheKhedive, you can only be presented to a fragment of it. Youmay be received by one of his wives; it may please the Queenmother, who is in charge of his largest harem, to do the honors;or the wife ofthe heir-apparent, or ofone ofthe younger sons, mayopen her doors to you . I suppose it is a good deal a matter ofwhim with the inmates of the harem; sometimes they are tiredof seeing strangers and of dressing for them. Usually they are440A RECEPTION. 441eager to break the monotony of their lives with a visit thatpromises to show them a new costume. There is only one condition made as to the dress of the lady who is to be received ata royal harem; she must not wear black, there is a superstitionconnected with a black dress, it puts the inmates of the haremin low spirits. Gentlemen presented to the Khedive wear theusual evening dress.The Khedive's winter-residence is the Palace of Abdeen, notfar from the Ezbekeëh, and it was there that Dr. Lamborn andmyself were presented to his highness by Mr. Beardsley, ourconsul-general. Nothing regal could be more simple or lessceremonious. We arrived at the door at the moment fixed, forthe Khedive is a man of promptness and I imagine has his entireday parcelled out in engagements. We first entered a spaciousentrance-hall, from which a broad stairway leads to the first story;here were thirty or forty janizaries, gentlemen- in-waiting, andeunuchs, standing motionless, at the sides, and guarding theapproach to the stairway, in reception attitudes. Here we werereceived by an attendant who conducted us to a room on theleft, where we were introduced to the chamberlain, and depositedour outer coats and hats. The chamberlain then led us to thefoot ofthe stairs, but accompanied us no further; we ascendedto the first landing, and turning to another broad stairway sawthe Khedive awaiting us at the head of it . He was unattended;indeed we saw no officer or servant on this floor. The furnitureabove and below was European, except the rich, thick carpetsof Turkey and Persia.His Highness, who wore a dress altogether European exceptthe fez, received us cordially, shaking hands and speaking withsimplicity, as a private gentleman might, and, wasting no time inOriental compliments, led the way to a small reception - roomfurnished in blue satin. We were seated together in a cornerof the apartment, and an animated talk at once began. Dr.Lamborn's special errand was to ascertain whether Egypt wouldbe represented in our Centennial, about which the Khedive waswell informed. The conversation then passed to the materialcondition of Egypt, the development of its resources, its canals442 HIS HIGHNESS AT HOME.and railroads, and especially the new road into Soudan, and theopening of Darfour. The Khedive listened attentively to anypractical information, either about railroads, factories, or agriculture, that my companions were able to give him, and had the airof a man eager to seize any idea that might be for the advancement of Egypt; when he himself spoke, it was with vivacity,shrewdness, and good sense. And he is not without a gleam ofhumor now and then, -a very hopeful quality in a sovereign andespecially in an Oriental ruler.The Khedive, in short, is a person to inspire confidence; heappears to be an able, energetic man of affairs, quick and resolute;there is not the slightest stiffness or " divine right " pretencein his manner. He is short, perhaps five feet seven or eightinches in height, and stout. He has a well-proportioned, solidhead, good features, light complexion, and a heavy, strong jaw,which his closely-trimmed beard does not conceal. I am notsure that the penetration of his glance does not gain a little from aslight defect in one eye-the result of ophthalmia in his boyhood.When the interview had lasted about fifteen minutes, theKhedive ended it by rising; at the head of the stairs we shookhands and exchanged the proper speeches; at the bottom of thefirst flight we turned and bowed, his highness still standingand bowing, and then we saw him no more. As we passed outan order had come from above which set the whole household ina flurry of preparation, a running hither and thither as for speedydeparture the sort of haste that is mingled with fear, as for thecommand of a power that will not brook an instant's delay.Exaggerated notions are current about harems and haremreceptions, notions born partly of the seclusion of the femaleportion of the household in the East. Of course the majority ofharems in Egypt are simply the apartment of the one wife andher children. The lady who enters one of them pays an ordinary call, and finds no mystery whatever. If there is more thanone wife, a privileged visitor, able to converse with the inmates,might find some skeletons behind the screened windows. It isalso true that a foreign lady may enter one of the royal haremsand be received with scarcely more ceremony than would attendLADIES OF THE HAREM. 443an ordinary call at home. The receptions at which there isgreat display, at which crowds of beautiful or ugly slaves linethe apartments, at which there is music and dancing by almehs,an endless service of sweets and pipes and coffee, and a dozenchanges of dress by the hostess during the ceremony, are notfrequent, are for some special occasion, the celebration of amarriage, or the entertainment of a visitor of high rank. Onewho expects, upon a royal invitation to the harem, to wanderinto the populous dove- cote of the Khedive, where languish thebeauties of Asia, the sisters from the Gardens of Gul, piningfor a new robe of the mode from Paris, will be most cruelly disappointed.ness.But a harem remains a harem, in the imagination. The ladieswent one day to the house-I suppose it is a harem-of Hussein,the waiter who has served us with unremitting fidelity and cleverThe house was one of the ordinary sort of unburnt brick,very humble, but perfectly tidy and bright. The secret of itscheerfulness was in a nice, cheery, happy little wife, who madea home for Hussein such as it was a pleasure to see in Egypt.They had four children, the eldest a daughter, twelve years oldand very good-mannered and pretty. As she was of marriageable age, her parents were beginning to think ofsettling her in life."What a nice girl she is, Hussein, " says Madame."Yes'm," says Hussein, waving his hands in his usualstruggle with the English language, and uttering the longestspeech ever heard from him in that tongue, but still speakingas if about something at table, " yes'm; good man have it;bad man, drinkin' man, smokin' man, eatin' man not have it. "I will describe briefly two royal presentations, one to thefavorite wife of the Khedive, the other to the wife of Mohammed Tufik Pasha, the eldest son and heir-apparent, accordingto the late revolution in the rules of descent. French, thecourt language, is spoken not only by the Khedive but by allthe ladies of his family who receive foreigners. The lady whowas presented to the Khedive's wife, after passing the usualguard of eunuchs in the palace, was escorted through a longsuite of showy apartments. In each one she was introduced444 THE WIFe of tufIK a maid of honor who escorted her to the next, each lady-inwaiting being more richly attired than her predecessor, andthe lady was always thinking that now this one must be theprincess herself. Female slaves were in every room, and agreat number of them waited in the hall where the princessreceived her visitor. She was a strikingly handsome woman,dressed in pink satin and encrusted with diamonds. Theconversation consisted chiefly of the most exaggerated andbarefaced compliments on both sides, both as to articles ofapparel and personal appearance. Coffee, cigarettes, andsweets without end, in cups of gold set with precious stones,were served by the female slaves. The wife was evidentlydelighted with the impression made by her beauty, her jewels,and her rich dress.The wife of Tufik Pasha received at one of the palaces inthe suburbs. At the door eunuchs were in waiting to conductthe visitors up the flight of marble steps, and to deliver themto female slaves in waiting. Passing up several broad stairways, they were ushered into a grand reception- hall furnishedin European style, except the divans. Only a few servantswere in attendance, and they were white female slaves. Theprincess is petite, pretty, intelligent, and attractive. Shereceived her visitors with entire simplicity, and withoutceremony, as a lady would receive callers in America. Theconversation ran on the opera, the travel on the Nile, andtopics of the town. Coffee and cigarettes were offered, andthe sensible interview ended like an occidental visit. It is alittle disenchanting, all this adoption of European customs;but the wife of Tufik Pasha should ask him to go a littlelittle further, and send all the eunuchs out ofthe palace.We had believed that summer was come. But we learnedthat March in Cairo is, like the same month the world over,treacherous. The morning of the twenty- sixth was cold, thethermometer 60°. A north wind began to blow, and byafternoon increased to a gale, such as had not been knownhere for years. The town was enveloped in a whirlwind ofsand; everything loose was shaking and flying; it was impossible to see one's way, and people scudding about the streetsTHE MUMMY CONSIDERED. 445with their heads drawn under their robes continually dashedinto each other. The sun was wholly hidden. From ourboat we could see only a few rods over the turbulent river.The air was so thick with sand, that it had the appearance ofa yellow canvas. The desert had invaded the air-that wasall . The effect of the light through this was extremelyweird; not like a dark day of clouds and storm in NewEngland, but a pale, yellowish, greenish, phantasmagoriclight, which seemed to presage calamity. Such a light asmay be at the Judgment Day. Cairo friends who dined withus said they had never seen such a day in Egypt. Dahabeëhswere torn from their moorings; trees were blown down inthe Ezbekëeh Gardens.We spent the day, as we had spent other days, in theMuseum of Antiquities at Boulak. This wonderful collection,which is the work of Mariette Bey, had a thousand timesmore interest for us now than before we made the Nilevoyage and acquired some knowledge of ancient Egyptthrough its monuments. Everything that we saw had meaning-statues, mummy-cases, images, scarabæi, seals, stela, goldjewelry, and the simple articles in domestic use.It must be confessed that to a person uninformed aboutEgypt and unaccustomed to its ancient art, there is nothingin the world so dreary as a collection of its antiquities. Theendless repetition of designs, the unyielding rigidity of forms,the hideous mingling of the human and the bestial, the deadformality, are insufferably wearisome. The mummy is thoroughly disagreeeable. You can easily hate him and all hisbelongings; there is an air of infinite conceit about him; Ifeel it in the exclusive box in which he stands, in the smirkof his face painted on his case. I wonder if it is the perkishness of immortality-as if his race alone were immortal.His very calmness, like that of so many of the statues hemade, is an offensive contempt. It is no doubt unreasonable,but as a living person I resent this intrusion of a preserveddead person into our warm times, -an appearance anachronisticand repellant.446 DISCOVERIES OF MARIETTE BEY.But as an illustration of Egyptian customs, art, and history,the Boulak museum is almost a fascinating place. True it is notso rich in many respects as some European collections ofEgyptian antiquities, but it has some objects that are unique;for instance, the jewels of Queen Aah-hotep, a few statues, andsome stele, which furnish the most important information.This is not the place, had I the knowledge, to enter upon anydiscussion of the antiquity of these monuments or of Egyptianchronology. I believe I am not mistaken, however, in sayingthat the discoveries of Mariette Bey tend strongly to establishthe credit of the long undervalued list of Egyptian sovereignsmade by Manetho, and that many Oriental scholars agree withthe directors of this museum that the date of the first Egyptiandynasty is about five thousand years before the Christian era.But the almost startling thought presented by this collection isnot in the antiquity of some of these objects, but in the longcivilization anterior to their production , and which must havebeen. necessary to the growth of the art here exhibited .It could not have been a barbarous people who produced, forinstance, these life-like images found at Maydoon, statues of aprince and princess who lived under the ancient king Snéfron,the last sovereign of the third dynasty, and the predecessor ofCheops. At no epoch, says M. Mariette, did Egypt produceportraits more speaking, though they want the breadth of styleofthe statue in wood- of which more anon. But it is as muchin an ethnographic as an art view that these statues areimportant. If the Egyptian race at that epoch was of the typeoffered by these portraits, it resembled in nothing the racewhich inhabited the north of Egypt not many years afterSnéfron. To comprehend the problem here presented we haveonly to compare the features of these statues with those ofothers in this collection belonging to the fourth and fifthdynasties.The best work of art in the Museum is the statue of Chephron,the builder of the second pyramid. " The epoch of Chephron," says M. Mariette, " corresponding to the third reign ofthe fourth dynasty of Manetho, our statue is not less than sixTHE WOODEN MAN. 447thousand years old. " It is a life- size sitting figure, executed inred granite. We admire its tranquil majesty, we marvel at theclose study of nature in the moulding of the breast and limbs,we confess the skill that could produce an effect so fine in suchintractable material. It seems as if Egyptian art were about toburst its trammels. But it never did; it never exceeded thiscleverness; on the contrary it constantly fell away from it.The most interesting statue to us, and perhaps the oldestimage in Egypt, and, if so, in the world, is the Wooden Man,which was found at Memphis. This image, one metre and tencentimetres high, stands erect, holding a staff. The figure isfull of life, the pose expresses vigor, action, pride, the head,round in form, indicates intellect. The eyes are crystal, in asetting of bronze, giving a startling look of life to the regard. Itis no doubt a portrait. "There is nothing more striking, " saysits discoverer, " than this image, in a manner living, of a personwho has been dead six thousand years. " He must have been aman of mark, and a citizen of a state well-civilized; this is notthe portrait of a barbarian, nor was it carved by a rude artist.Few artists, I think, have lived since, who could impart morevitality to wood.And if the date assigned to this statue is correct, sculpture inEgypt attained its maximum of development six thousand yearsago. This conclusion will be resisted by many, and on different grounds. I heard a clergyman of the Church of Englandsay to his comrade, as they were looking at this figure:-"It's all nonsense; six thousand years! It couldn't be.That's before the creation of man. ""Well," said the other, irreverently, " perhaps this was themodel. "This museum is for the historian, the archeologist, not for theartist, except in his study of the history of art. What Egypthad to impart to the world of art was given thousands of yearsago-intimations, suggestions, outlines that, in freer circ*mstances, expanded into works of immortal beauty. The highestbeauty, that last touch of genius, that creative inspiration whichis genius and not mere talent, Egyptian art never attained. It448 EGYPT ANd greece COMPARED.achieved wonders; they are all mediocre wonders; miracles oftalent. The architecture profoundly impresses, almost crushesone; it never touches the highest in the soul, it never charms, itnever satisfies.19The total impression upon myself of this ancient architectureand this plastic art is a melancholy one. And I think this isnot altogether due to its monotony. The Egyptian art is saidto be sui generis; it has a character that is instantly recognized;whenever and wherever we see a specimen of it, we say withoutfear of mistake, " that is Egyptian. ' We are as sure of it as weare of a piece of Greek work of the best age, perhaps surer. IsEgyptian art, then, elevated to the dignity of a type, of itself?Is it so to be studied, as something which has flowered into aperfection of its kind? I know we are accustomed to look at itas if it were, and to set it apart; in short, I have heard it judgedabsolutely, as if it were a rule to itself. I cannot bring myselfso to look at it. All art is one. We recognize peculiarities ofan age or of a people; but there is only one absolute standard;to that touchstone all must come.It seemsto methen that the melancholy impression producedby Egyptian art is not alone from its monotony. its rigidity,its stiff formality, but it is because we recognize in it anarrested development. It is archaic. The peculiarity of it isthat it always remained archaic. We have seen specimens ofthe earliest Etruscan figure-drawing, Gen. Cesnola found inCyprus Phoenician work, and we have statues of an earlierperiod of Greek sculpture, all of which more or less resembleEgyptian art. The latter are the beginnings of a consummatedevelopment. Egypt stopped at the beginnings. And wehave the sad spectacle of an archaic art, not growing, butelaborated into a fixed type and adhered to as if it were perfection. In some of the figures I have spoken of in thismuseum, you can find that art was about to emancipate itself.In all later works you see no such effort, no such tendency,no such hope. It had been abandoned. By and by impulsedied out entirely. For thousands of years the Egyptiansworked at perfecting the mediocre. Many attribute this remoteLEARNED OPINIONS. 449and total repression to religious influence. Something ofthesame sort may be seen in the paintings of saints in the Greekchambers of the East to-day; the type of which is that of theByzantine period. Are we to attribute a like arrest of development in China to the same cause?It is a theory very plausibly sustained, that the art of apeople is the flower of its civilization, the final expression ofthe conditions of its growth and its character. In reading Mr.Taine's ingenious observations upon art in the Netherlandsand art in Greece, we are ready to assent to the theory. Itmay be the general law of a free development in national lifeand in art. Ifit is, then it is not disturbed by the example ofEgypt. Egyptian art is not the expression of the natural character, for its art was never developed. The Egyptians were ajoyous race, given to mirth, to the dance, to entertainments, tothe charms of society, a people rather gay than grave; they livedin the open air, in the most friendly climate in the world. Thesculptures in the early tombs represent their life-an existence full of gaiety, grace, humor. This natural character isnot expressed in the sombre temples, nor in their symboliccarvings, nor in these serious, rigid statues, whose calm faceslook straight on as if into eternity. This art may express thereligion ofthe priestly caste; when it had attained the powerto portray the rigid expectation of immortality, the inscrutable repose of the Sphinx, it was arrested there, and neverallowed in any respect to change its formality. And I cannotbut believe that if it had been free, Egyptian art would havebudded and bloomed into a grace of form in harmony withthe character of the climate and the people.It is true that the architecture of Egypt was freer than itssculptures, but the whole ofit together is not worth one edificelike the Greek temple at Pæstum. And to end, by what mayseem a sweeping statement, I have had more pleasure froma bit of Greek work—an intaglio, or a coin ofthe best period, orthe sculptures or a broken entablature-than from anythingthat Egypt ever produced in art.29



FOR two days after the sand- storm, it gives us pleasure towrite, the weather was cold, raw, thoroughly unpleasant,resembling dear New England quite enough to make onehomesick. As late as the twenty- eighth of March, this was.The fact may be a comfort to those who dwell in a regionwhere winter takes a fresh hold in March.We broke up our establishment on the dahabeëh and movedto the hotel, abandoning I know not how many curiosities,antiquities and specimens, the possession of which had onceseemed to us of the last importance. I shall spare you thescene at parting with our crew. It would have been verytouching, but for the backsheesh. Some ofthem were faithfulfellows to whom we were attached; some ofthem were graceless scamps.But they all received backsheesh. That isalways the way. It was clearly understood that we shouldreward only the deserving, and we had again and againresolved not to give a piastre to certain ones of the crew.But, at the end, the obdurate howadji always softens; and theEgyptians know that he will. Egypt is full of good-fornothings whohave not only received presents but certificatesofcharacter from travelers whom they have disobliged for threemonths. There was, however, some discrimination in this case;backsheesh was distributed with some regard to good conduct;at the formal judgment on deck, Abd-el-Atti acted the partof Thoth in weighing out the portions, and my friend tookthe role of Osiris, receiving, vicariously for all of us, the kisses450THE BATHS IN CAIRO. 451on his hand of the grateful crew. I shall not be misunderstood in saying that the faithful Soudan boy, Gohah, wonldhave felt just as much grief in bidding us good- bye if he hadnot received a penny (the rest of the crew would have beeninconsolable in like case); his service was always marked byan affectionate devotion without any thought of reward. Hemust have had a magnanimous soul to forgive us for the doseswe gave him when he was ill during the voyage.We are waiting in Cairo professedly for the weather tobecome settled and pleasant in Syria-which does not happen, one year with another, till after the first of April; butwe are contented, for the novelties of the town are inexhaustible, and we are never weary of its animation and picturesquemovement. I suppose I should be held in low estimation if Isaid nothing concerning the baths of Cairo. It is expectedof every traveler that he will describe them, or one at leastone is usually sufficient. Indeed when I have read thesedescriptions, I have wondered how the writers lived to telltheir story. When a person has been for hours roasted andstifled, and had all his bones broken, you could not reasonably expect him to write so powerfully of the bath asmany travelers write who are so treated. I think these bathdescriptions are among the marvels of Oriental literature;Mr. Longfellow says ofthe Roman Catholic system, that it isa religion of the deepest dungeons and the highest towers;the Oriental bath (in literature) is like this; the unwashedinfidel is first plunged in a gulf of dark despair, and then heis elevated to a physical bliss that is ecstatic. The story istoo long at each end.I had experience of several different baths in Cairo, and Iinvariably found them less vigorous, that is milder in treatment, than the Turkish baths of New York or of Germany.With the Orientals the bath is a luxury, a thing to be enjoyed,and not an affair of extreme shocks and brutal surprises. Inthe bath itself there is never the excessive heat that I haveexperienced in such baths in New York, nor the suddenchange of temperature in water, nor the vigorous manipu-452 CURIOUS MODE OF EXECUTION.lation. The Cairo bath, in my experience, is gentle, moderate,enjoyable. The heat of the rooms is never excessive, the airis very moist, and water flows abundantly over the marblefloors; the attendants are apt to be too lazy to maltreat thebather, and perhaps err in gentleness. You are never roastedin a dry air and then plunged suddenly into cold water. I donot wonder that the Orientals are fond of their bath. Thebaths abound, for men and for women, and the natives pay avery small sum for the privilege of using them. Womenmake up parties, and spend a good part of the day in a bath;having an entertainment there sometimes, and a frolic. It issaid that mothers sometimes choose wives for their sons fromgirls they see at the baths. Some of them are used by menin the forenoon and by women in the afternoon, and I haveseen a great crowd of veiled women waiting at the door atThere must be over seventy-five of these public baths Cairo.As the harem had not yet gone over to the Gezeereh palace,we took the opportunity to visit it. This palace was built bythe Khedive, on what was the island of Gezeereh, when abranch of the Nile was suffered to run to the west of itspresent area. The ground is now the seat of gardens, and ofthe most interesting botanical and horticultural experimentson the part of the Khedive, under charge of competentscientific men. A botanist or an arboriculturist would findmaterial in the nurseries for long study. I was chieflyinterested (since I half believe in the malevolence of someplants) in a sort of murderous East Indian cane, which growsabout fifteen to twenty feet high, and so rapidly that (wewere told) it attains its growth in a day or two. At any rate,it thrusts up its stalks so vigorously and rapidly that Indiantyrants have employed it to execute criminals. The victim isbound to the ground over a bed of this cane at night, and inthe morning it has grown up through his body. We needsuch a vengeful vegetable as this in our country, to plantround the edges of our city gardens.The grounds about the palace are prettily, but formallyFRANKLIN IN EGYPT. 453laid out in flower-gardens, with fountains and a kiosk in thestyle of the Alhambra. Near by is a hot-house, with one ofthe best collections of orchids in the world; and not far off isthe zoological garden, containing a menagerie of Africanbirds and beasts, very well arranged and said to be nearlycomplete.The palace is a square building of iron and stucco, thelight pillars and piazzas painted in Saracenic designs andPersian colors, but the whole rather dingy, and beginning tobe shabby. Inside it is at once a showy and a comfortablepalace, and much better than we expected to see in Egypt;the carpenter and mason work are, however, badly done, as ifthe Khedive had been swindled by sharp Europeans; it isfull of rich and costly furniture. The rooms are large andeffective, and we saw a good deal of splendor in hangings andcurtains, especially in the apartments fitted up for the occupation ofthe Empress Eugenie. It is wonderful, by the way,with what interest people look at a bed in which an Empresshas slept; and we may add awe, for it is usually a broad,high and awful place of repose. Scattered about the roomsare, in defiance of the Prophet's religion, several paintings,all inferior, and a few busts (some of the Khedive) and otherpieces of statuary. The place of honor is given to an American subject, although the group was executed by an Italianartist. It stands upon the first landing of the great staircase.An impish-looking young Jupiter is seated on top of achimney, below which is the suggestion of a house- roof.Above his head is the point of a lightning- rod. The celestialelectrician is discharging a bolt into the rod, which is supposed to pass harmless over the roof below. Upon thepedestal is a medallion, the head of Benjamin Franklin, andencircling it, the legend:-Eripuit coelo fulmen. 1750. Thegroup looks better than you would imagine from the description.Beyond the garden is the harem-building, which wasundergoing a thorough renovation and refurnishing, in themost gaudy French style-such being the wish of the ladies454 HELIOPOLIS.who occupy it. They are eager to discard the beautifulMoorish designs which once covered the walls and to substitute French decoration. The dormitory portions consistof passages with rooms on each side, very much like a youngladies' boarding- school; the rooms are large enough toaccommodate three or four occupants. While we were leisurely strolling through the house, we noticed a great flurryand scurry in the building, and the attendants came to us ina panic, and made desperate efforts to hurry us out of thebuilding by a side-entrance, giving signs of woe and destruction to themselves if we did not flee. The Khedive hadarrived, on horseback, and unexpectedly, to inspect hisdomestic hearths.Werode, one sparkling morning, after a night of heavy rain,to Heliopolis; there was no mud, however, the rain havingserved to beat the sand firm. Heliopolis is the On of theBible, and in the time of Herodotus, its inhabitants were esteemed the most learned in history of all the Egyptians. Thefather- in-law ofJoseph was a priest there, and there Moses andPlato both learned wisdom. The road is excellent andplanted most of the distance with acacia trees; there areextensive gardens on either hand, plantations of trees, broadfields under cultivation , and all the way the air was full ofthe odor of flowers, blossoms of lemon and orange. In luxuriance and riant vegetation, it seemed an Oriental paradise.And the whole of this beautiful land of verdure, covered nowwith plantations so valuable, was a sand-desert as late as 1869.The water of the Nile alone has changed the desert into agarden.On the way we passed the race-course belonging to theKhedive, an observatory, and the old palace of Abbas Pasha,now in process of demolition, the foundations being bad, likehis own. It is said that the favorite wife of this hated tyrant,who was a Bedawee girl of rank, always preferred to live onthe desert, and in a tent rather than a palace. Here at anyrate, on the sand, lived Abbas Pasha, in hourly fear of assassination by his enemies. It was not difficult to conjure up theTHE "HOLY FAMILY" AGAIN. 455cowering figure, hiding in the recesses of this lonely palace,listening for the sound of horses ' hoofs coming on the cityroad, and ready to mount a swift dromedary, which was keptsaddled night and day in the stable, and flee into the desertfor Bedaween protection.At Mataréëh, we turned into a garden to visit the famousSycamore tree, under which the Virgin sat to rest, in the timeof the flight of the Holy Family. It is a large, scrubbylooking tree, probably two hundred years old. I wonder thatit does not give up the ghost, for every inch of its bark, evento the small limbs, is cut with names. The Copt, who ownsit, to prevent its destruction, has put a fence about it; and thatalso is covered all over. I looked in vain for the name of"Joseph "; but could find it neither on the fence nor on thetree.At Heliopolis one can work up any number of reflections; butall he can see is the obelisk, which is sunken somewhat in theground. It is more correct, however, to say that the ground aboutit, and the whole site of the former town and Temple of the Sun,have risen many feet since the beginning of the Christian Era.This is the oldest obelisk in Egypt, and bears the cartouche ofAmenemhe I. , the successor ofOsirtasen I. —about three thousandB. C. , according to Mariette; Wilkinson and Mariette are onlyone thousand years apart, on this date of this monument. Thewasps or bees have filled up the lettering on one side, and givenit the appearance of being plastered with mud. There was noplace for us to sit down and meditate, and having stood, surrounded by a swarm of the latest children of the sun, andlooked at the remains as long as etiquette required, without asingle historical tremor, we mounted and rode joyfully city-wardbetween the lemon hedges.In this Spring-time, late in the afternoon , the fashionable driveout the Shoobra road, under the arches of sycamore trees, ismore thronged than in winter even. Handsome carriages appearand now and then a pair of blooded Arab horses. There aretwo lines of vehicles extending for a mile or so, the one goingout and the other returning, and the round of the promenade456 THE SHOOBRA PALACE.continues long enough for everybody to see everybody. Conspicuous always are the neat two-horse cabriolets, lined with gay silksand belonging to the royal harem; outriders are in advance,and eunuchs behind, and within each are two fair and painted Circassians, shining in their thin white veils, looking from thewindows, eager to see the world, and not averse to be seen by it.Theveil has become with them, as it is in Constantinople, a merepretext and a heightener of beauty. We saw by chance one daysome of these birds of paradise abroad in the Shoobra Gardenand live to speak of it.The Shoobra palace and its harem, hidden by a high wall,were built by Mohammed Ali; he also laid out the celebratedgarden; and the establishment was in his day no doubt thehandsomest in the East. The garden is still rich in rare trees,fruit-trees native and exotic, shrubs, and flowers, but fallen intoa too-common Oriental decay. Instead of keeping up this fineplace the Khedive builds a new one. These Oriental despots.erect costly and showy palaces, in a manner that invites decay,and their successors build new ones, as people get new suits ofclothes instead of wearing the garments of their fathers.In the midst of the garden is a singular summer- palace, builtupon terraces and hidden by trees; but the great attraction isthe immense Kiosk, the most characteristic, Oriental building Ihave seen, and a very good specimen of the costly and yet cheapmagnificence of the Orient. It is a large square pavilion, thecenter of which is a little lake, but large enough for boats, andit has an orchestral platform in the middle; the verandah aboutthis is supported on marble pillars and has a highly- decoratedceiling; carvings in marble abound; and in the corners areapartments decorated in the height of barbaric splendor.The pipes are still in place which conveyed gas to every cornerand outline of this bizarre edifice . I should like to have seen itilluminated on a summer night when the air was heavy with thegarden perfumes. I should like to have seen it then throngedwith the dark-eyed girls ofthe North, in their fleecy splendors ofdrapery, sailing like water-nymphs in these fairy boats, flashingtheir diamonds in the mirror of this pool, dancing down theFORBIDDEN LOOKS. 457marble floor to the music of soft drums and flutes that beat fromthe orchestral platform hidden by the water- lilies. Such avision is not permitted to an infidel. But on such a night oldMohammed Ali might have been excused if he thought he wasalready in El Genneh, in the company of the girls of Paradise,"whose eyes will be very large and entirely black, and whosestature will be proportioned to that of the men, which will be theheight of a tall palm- tree , or about sixty feet "; and that he wasentertained in “ a tent erected for him of pearls, jacinths, andemeralds, of a very large extent. "While we were lounging in this place of melancholy gaiety,which in the sunlight bears something the aspect of a tawdrywatering- place when the season is over, several harem carriagesdrove to the entrance: but the eunuchs seeing that unbelieverswere in the kiosk would not permit the ladies to descend, andthe cortège went on and disappeared in the shrubbery. Theattendants invited us to leave. While we were still near thekiosk the carriages came round again, and the ladies began toalight. The attendants in the garden were now quite besidethemselves, and endeavored to keep our eyes from beholding,and to hustle us down a side- path.It was in vain that we said to them that we were not afraid,that we were accustomed to see ladies walk in gardens, and thatit couldn't possibly harm us. They persisted in misunderstanding us, and piteously begged us to turn away and flee. Theladies were already out ofthe carriages, veils withdrawn, andbeginning to enjoy rural life in the garden. They seemed tohave no more fear than we. The horses of the out-riders wereled down our path; superb animals, and we stopped to admirethem. The harem ladies, rather over-dressed for a promenade,were in full attire of soft silks, blue and pink, in delicate shades,and really made pretty appearance amid the green. It seemedimpossible that it could be wrong to look at them. The attendants couldn't deny that the horses were beautiful, but theyregarded our admiration of them as inopportune. They seemedto fear we might look under, or over, or around the horses,towards that forbidden sight by the kiosk. It was useless for458 UNCOMFORTABLE to enquire the age and the breed of the horses. Our efforts togain information only added to the agony of the gardeners.They wrung their hands, they tried to face us about, they ranhither and thither, and it was not till we were out of sight of theodalisques that they recovered any calmness and began to cullflowers for us, and to produce some Yusef Effendis, as a sign ofamity and willingness to accept a few piastres .The last day of March has come. It is time to depart. Eventhe harem will soon be going out of town. We have remainedin the city long enough to imbibe its atmosphere; not longenough to wear out its strangeness, nor to become familiar withall objects of interest. And we pack our trunks with reluctance,in the beliefthat we are leaving the most thoroughly Oriental andinteresting city in all the East.



A GENTLEMAN started from Cairo a few days before us,with the avowed purpose of following in the track oftheChildren of Israel and viewing the exact point where theycrossed the Red Sea. I have no doubt that he was successful.So many routes have been laid out for the Children across theIsthmus, that one can scarcely fail to fall into one of them.Our purpose was merely to see Suez and the famous Sea, and thegreat canal of M. Lesseps; not doubting, however, that whenwe looked over the ground we should decide where the Exodusmust have taken place.Theold direct railway to Suez is abandoned; the present routeis by Zagazeeg and Ismailia—a tedious journey, requiring a day.The ride is wearisome, for the country is flat and presents nothingnew to one familiar with Egyptian landscapes. The first part ofthe journey is, however, enlivened by the company of the canalof Fresh Water, and by the bright verdure of the plain which thecanal produces. And this luxuriant vegetation continues untilyou come to the still unreclaimed desert of the Land of Goshen.Now that water can be supplied it only needs people to makethis Land as fat as it was in the days of the Israelites.Some twenty miles from Cairo we pass near the so-calledMound ofthe Jew, believed to be the ruins of the city of Orionand the temple built bythe high priest Onias in the reign ofPtolemy Philometer and Cleopatra, as described by Josephus.The temple was after the style of that at Jerusalem. ThisJewish settlement was made upon old Egyptian ruins; in 1870459460 ANOTHER temple.the remains of a splendid temple of the time of Rameses II . werelaid open. The special interest to Biblical scholars of thisJewish colony here, which multiplied itself and spread over considerable territory, is that its establishment fulfilled a prophesyof Isaiah (xix, 19, etc. ); and Onias urged this prophesy, in hisletter to the Ptolemy, asking permission to purge the remains ofthe heathen temple in the name of Heliopolis and to erect therea temple to Almighty God. Ptolemy and Cleopatra replied thatthey wondered Onias should desire to build a temple in a placeso unclean and so full of sacred animals, but since Isaiah foretold it, he had leave to do so. We saw nothing of this ancientand once flourishing seat of Jewish enterprise, save some sharpmounds in the distance.Nor did we see more of the more famous city of Bubastis,where was the temple to Pasht, the cat or lioness-headed deity(whom Herodotus called Diana) , the avenger of crimes. According to Herodotus, all the cats of Egypt were embalmed andburied in Bubastis. This city was the residence of the PharaohSheshonk I. (the Shishak of the Bible) who sacked Jerusalem,and it was at that time the capital of Egypt. It was fromhere, on the Bubastic (or Pelusiac) branch of the Nile, that theancient canal was dug to connect with the Heroöpolite Gulf(now the Bitter Lakes) , the northermost arm of the Red Sea atthat date; and the city was then, by that fresh-water canal, onthe water-way between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean.But before the Christian era the Red Sea had retired to aboutit* present limit (the Bitter Lake being cut off from it ) , and theBubastic branch of the Nile was nearly dried up. Bubastis andall this region are now fed by the canal which leaves the Nile atCairo and runs to Ismailia, and thence to Suez. It is a startlingthought that all this portion of the Delta, east, and south, andthe Isthmus depend for life upon the keeper of the gate ofthecanal at Cairo. If we were to leave the train here and stumbleabout in the mounds of Bubastis, we should find only fragmentsof walls, blocks of granite, and a few sculptures.Atthe Zagazeeg station, whese there is a junction with the Alexandria and Cairo main line, we wait some time, and find veryWHERE DID THE ISRAELITES CROSS? 461pleasant the garden and the picturesque refreshment- house inwhich our minds are suddenly diverted from ancient Egypt by alarge display of East Indian and Japanese curiosities on sale.From this we follow, substantially, the route of the canal,running by villages and fertile districts, and again on the desert'sedge. We come upon no traces of the Israelites until we reachMasamah, which is supposed to be the site of Rameses, one ofthe treasure-cities mentioned in the Bible, and the probablestarting-point ofthe Jews in their flight. This is about the centerof the Land of Goshen, and Rameses may have been the chiefcity ofthe district.If I knew exactly the route the Israelites took, I should notdare to disclose it; for this has become, I do not know why,a tender subject. But it seems to me that if the Jews wereassembled here from the Delta for a start, a very natural wayof exit would have been down the Wadee to the head of theHeroöpolite Gulf, the route of the present and the ancientcanal. And if it should be ascertained beyond a doubt thatSethi I. built as well as planned such a canal, the argumentof probability would be greatly strengthened that Moses ledhis vast host along the canal. Any dragoman to- day, desiringto cross the Isthmus and be beyond pursuit as soon as possible, supposing the condition of the country now as it was atthe time of the Exodus, would strike for the shortest line.And it is reasonable to suppose that Moses would lead hischarge to a point where the crossing of the sea, or one of itsarms, was more feasible than it is anywhere below Suez;unless we are to start with the supposition that Mosesexpected a miracle, and led the Jews to a spot where, apparently, escape for them was hopeless if the Egyptian pursued.It is believed that at the time of the Exodus there was acommunication between the Red Sea and the Bitter Lakes-formerly called Heroöpolite Gulf-which it was the effortof many rulers to keep open by a canal. Very anciently, itis evident, the Red Sea extended to and included these lakes;and it is not improbable that, in the time of Moses, the waterwas, by certain winds, forced up to the north into these lakes;462 IN SIGHT OF THE BITTER LAKES.and again, that, crossings could easily be made, the windbeing favorable, at several points between what is now Suezand the head of the Bitter Lakes. Many scholars make Chaloof, about twelve miles above Suez the point of passage.We only touch the outskirts of Ismailia in going on toSuez. Below, we pass the extensive plantation and gardenof the Khedive, in which he has over fifty thousand youngtrees in a nursery. This spot would be absolute desert but forthe Nile-water let in upon it. All day our astonishment hasincreased at the irrigation projects of the Viceroy, and hisherculean efforts to reclaim a vast land of desert; the enlargingof the Sweet-Water Canal, and the gigantic experiments inarboriculture and agriculture.We noticed that the Egyptian laborers at work with the wheelbarrows (instead of the baskets formerly used by them) on theenlargement of the canal, were under French contractors, forthe most part. The men are paid from a franc to a franc and aquarter per day; but they told us that it was very difficult toget laborers, so many men being drafted for the army.At dark we come in sight of the Bitter Lakes, through whichthe canal is dredged; we can see vessels of various sorts andsteamers moving across them in one line; and we see nothingmore until we reach Suez. The train stops "at nowhere, " inthe sand, outside the town. It is the only train of the day, butthere are neither carriages nor donkeys in waiting. There is anair about the station of not caring whether anyone comes ornot. We walk a mile to the hotel, which stands close to thesea, with nothing but a person's good sense to prevent hiswalking off the platform into the water. In the night the waterlooked like the sand, and it was only by accident that we didnot step off into it; however, it turned out to be only a coupleof feet deep.The hotel, which I suppose is rather Indian than Egyptian, isbuilt round a pleasant court; corridors and latticed doorsare suggestive of hot nights; the servants and waiters are allHindoos; we have come suddenly in contact with another typeof Oriental life.APPROACHing the red sea. 463Coming down from Ismailia, a friend who was with us had noticket. It was a case beyond the conductor's experience; heutterly refused backsheesh and he insisted on having a ticket.At last he accepted ten francs and went away. Looking in theofficial guide we found that the fare was nine francs and aquarter. The conductor, thinking he had opened a guilelesssource of supply, soon returned and demanded two francs more.My friend countermined him by asking the return of the seventyfive centimes overpaid. An amusing pantomime ensued. Atlength the conductor lowered his demand to one franc, and, notgetting that, he begged for backsheesh. I was sorry to havemy high ideal of a railway-conductor, formed in America,lowered in this manner.We are impatient above all things for a sight of the Red Sea.But in the brilliant starlight, all that appears is smooth waterand a soft picture of vessels at anchor or aground looming up inthe night. Suez, seen by early daylight, is a scattered city ofsome ten thousand inhabitants, too modern and too cheap inits buildings to be interesting. There is only a little section ofit, where we find native bazaars, twisting streets, overhangingbalconies, and latticed windows. It lies on a sand peninsula,and the sand-drifts close all about it, ready to lick it up, if thecanal of fresh water should fail.The only elevation near is a large mound, which may be thesite of the fort of ancient Clysma, or Gholzim as it was afterwards called the city believed to be the predecessor of Suez.Upon this mound an American has built, and presented to theKhedive, a sort of chalet of wood-the whole transported fromAmerica ready-made, one of those white, painfully unpicturesquethings with two little gables at the end, for which our country isjustly distinguished. Cheap. But then it is of wood, and woodis one of the dearest things in Egypt. I only hope the fashionof it may not spread in this land of grace.It was a delightful morning, the wind west and fresh. Fromthis hillock we commanded one of the most interesting prospectsin the world. We looked over the whole desert-flat on whichlies the little town, and which is pierced by an arm of the Gulf464 FAITH AND FACTS.that narrows into the Suez canal; we looked upon two miles ofcurved causeway which runs down to the docks and the anchoring place of the steam-vessels -there cluster the dry-docks, thedredges, the canal- offices, and just beyond the shipping lay; inthe distance we saw the Red Sea, like a long lake , deep- greenor deep-blue, according to the light, and very sparkling; to theright was the reddish limestone range called Gebel Attáka—acontinuation of the Mokattam; on the left there was a greatsweep of desert, and far off-one hundred and twenty miles asthe crow flies-the broken Sinai range of mountains, in whichwe tried to believe we could distinguish the sacred peak itself.I asked an intelligent railway official, a Moslem, who acted asguide that morning,"What is the local opinion as to the place where the Childrenof Israel crossed over? ""The French, " he replied, " are trying to make it out that itwas at Chaloof, about twenty miles above here, where there islittle water. But we think it was at a point twenty milesbelow here; we must put it there, or there wouldn't be anymiracle. You see that point, away to the right? That's thespot. There is a wady comes down the side. "66 But where do the Christians think the crossing was? ""Oh, here at Suez; there, about at this end of Gebel Attáka. ”The Moslems' faith in the miraculous deliverance is disturbedby no speculations. Instead of trying to explain the miracle bythe use of natural causes, and seeking for a crossing where thewater might at one time have been heaped and at anotherforced away by the winds, their only care is to fix the passagewhere the miracle would be most striking.After breakfast and preparations to visit Moses' Well, werode down the causeway to the made land where the docks are.The earth dumped here by the dredging-machines (and whichnow forms solid building ground) , is full of a great variety ofsmall sea-shells; the walls that enclose it are of rocks conglomerate of shells. The ground all about gives evidence of salt;we found shallow pools evaporated so that a thick crust ofexcellent salt had formed on the bottom and at the sides. TheTHE SUEZ CANAL. 465water in them was of a decidedly rosy color, caused by someinfusorial growth. The name, Red Sea, however, has nothingto do with this appearance, I believe.We looked at the pretty houses and gardens, the dry-dockand the shops, and the world- famous dredges, without whichthe Suez Canal would very likely never have been finished .These enormous machines have arms or ducts, an iron spout ofsemi-elliptical form , two hundred and thirty feet long, by meansof which the dredger working in the center of the channelcould discharge its contents over the bank. One of themremoved, on an average, eighty thousand cubit yards of soil amonth. A faint idea may be had of this gigantic work by theamount of excavation here, done by the dredgers, in one month,-two million seven hundred and sixty-three thousand cubityards. M. de Lesseps says that if this soil were "laid outbetween the Arc de Triomphe and the Place de la Concorde,it would cover the entire length and breadth of the ChampsElysées, a distance equal to a mile and a quarter, and reach tothe top of the trees on either side . "At the pier our felucca met us and we embarked and sailedinto the mouth of the canal. The channel leading to it is notwide, and is boneyed at short intervals. The mouth of thecanal is about nine hundred feet wide and twenty-seven deep,*and it is guarded on the east by a long stone mole projectedfrom the Asiatic shore. There is considerable ebb and flow ofthe tide in this part of the canal and as far as the Bitter Lakes,where it is nearly all lost in the expanse, being only slightlyfelt at Lake Timsah, from which point there is a slight uniformcurrent to the Mediterranean.From the canal entrance we saw great ships and steamboatsin the distance, across the desert, and apparently sailing inthe desert; but we did not follow them; we turned, andcrossed to the Asiatic shore. We had brought donkeys withus, and were soon mounted for a scrambling gallop of an

  • Total length of Canal, 100 miles. Width of water-line, where banks

are low, 328 feet; in deep cuttings, 190; width at base, 72; depth, 26.30466 THE WELLS OF MOSES.hour and a half, down the coast, over level and hard sand, toMoses' Well. The air was delicious and the ride exhilarating. I tried to get from our pleasant Arab guide, who hada habit of closing one eye, what he thought of the place of thepassage.66 Where did the Children of Israel cross? ""Over dat mountain.""Yes, but where did they cross the Sea? ""You know Moses? ""Yes, I know did he cross? ""Well," closing his eye very tight, " him long time ago, notHe cross way down there, can't see him from here."On the way we passed the white tents of the QuarantineStation, on our right by the shore, where the caravan ofMecca pilgrims had been detained. We hoped to see it:but it had just set out on its desert march further inland.was seen from Suez all day, straggling along in detachments,and at night camped about two miles north of the town.However, we found a dozen or two of the pilgrims, dirty,ragged, burned by the sun, and hungry, lying outside theenclosure at the wells.ItThe Wells of Moses (or Ain Moosa, " Moses' Well, " in theArabic) are distant a mile or more from the low shore, andour first warning of nearness to them was the appearance ofsome palms in a sandy depression. The attempt at vegetation is rather sickly, and the spot is but a desolate one.It isthe beginning of the route to Mount Sinai, however, and isno doubt a very welcome sight to returning pilgrims. Contrast is everything; it is contrast with its surroundings thathas given Damascus its renown.There are half a dozen of these wells, three of which aresome fifteen to twenty feet across, and are in size and appearance very respectable frog-ponds. One of them is walledwith masonry, evidently ancient, and two shadoofs drawwater from it for the garden, an enclosure of an acre, fencedwith palm-matting. It contains some palms and shrubs anda few vegetables. Here also is a half-deserted house, thatA SENTIMENTAL PILGRIMAGE. 467may once have been a hotel and is now a miserable trattoriawithout beds. It is in charge of an Arab who lives in a hutat the other side of the garden, with his wife and a personwho bore the unmistakable signs of being a mother- in - law.The Arab made coffee for us, and furnished us a table, onwhich we spread our luncheon under the verandah. Healso gave us Nile- water which had been brought from Suezin a cask on camel- back; and his whole charge was only onebob (a shilling) each. I mention the charge, because it isdisenchanting in a spot of so much romance to pay for yourentertainment in "bobs."We had come, upon what I may truly call a sentimentalpilgrimage, on account of Moses and the Children of Israel.If they crossed over from Mount Attáka yonder, then thismight be the very spot where Miriam sang the song oftriumph. If they crossed at Chaloof, twenty miles above, asit is more probable they did, then this might be the Marahwhose bitter waters Moses sweetened for the time being; theArabs have a tradition that Moses brought up water hereby striking the ground with his stick. At all events, thename of Moses is forever attached to this oasis, and it did notseem exactly right that the best well should be owned by anArab who makes it the means of accumulating bobs. Oneroom of the house was occupied by three Jews, traders, whoestablish themselves here a part of the year in order to buy,from the Bedaween, turquoise and antiquities which arefound at Mount Sinai. I saw them sorting over a peck ofrough and inferior turquoise, which would speedily be forwarded to Constantinople, Paris, and London. One of themsold me a small intaglio, which was no doubt of old Greekworkmanship, and which he swore was picked up at MountSinai. There is nothing I long more to know, sometimes,than the history of wandering coins and intaglios which wesee in the Orient.It is not easy to reckon the value of a tradition, nor of atraditional spot like this in which all the world feels a certainproprietorship. It seemed to us, however, that it would be468 MIRIAM OR MARAH.worth while to own this famous Asiatic well; and we askedthe owner what he would take for it. He offered to sell theranche for one hundred and fifty guineas; this, however,would not include the camel, -for that he wanted ten poundsin addition; but it did include a young gazelle, two goats,a brownish-yellow dog, and a cat the color of the sand. Andit also comprised, in the plantation, a few palms, some junipers, of the Biblical sort, the acacia or " sh*ttah " tree of theBible, and, best of all, the large shrub called the tamarisk,which exudes during two months in the year a sweet gummysubstance that was the " manna " ofthe Israelites.Mother-in- law wore a veil, a string of silver- gilt imitation coins,several large silver bracelets, and a necklace upon which wassewed a string of small Arabic gold coins. As this person morethan anyone else there, represented Miriam,-not being tooyoung, we persuaded her to sell us some of the coins asmementoes of our visit. We could not determine, as I said ,whether this spot is associated with Miriam or whether it is theMarah of bitter waters; consequently it was difficult to say whatour emotions should be. However, we decided to let them beexpressed by the inscription that a Frenchman had written on awall of the house, which reads: - Le cœur me palpitait comme unamant qui revoit sa bien aimée.There are three other wells enclosed, but unwalled, the largestof which-and it has near it a sort of loggia or open shed wheresome dirty pilgrims were reposing—is an unsightly pond full of agreen growth of algæ. In this enclosure, which contains two orthree acres, are three smaller wells, or natural springs, as they allare, and a considerable thicket of palms and tamarisks. Thelarger well is the stronger in taste and most bitter, containingmore magnesia. The water in all is flat and unpleasant, and notenlivened by carbonic acid gas, although we saw bubbles comingto the surface constantly. Ifthe spring we first visited could beaërated, it would not be worse to drink than many waters thatare sought after. The donkeys liked it; but a donkey likes anything. About these feeble plantations the sand drifts from alldirections, and it would soon cover them but for the protectingRETURNING TO SUEZ. 469fence. The way towards Sinai winds through shifting sandmounds, and is not inviting.The desert over which we return is dotted frequently with tuftsof a flat- leafed, pale-green plant, which seem to thrive withoutmoisture; and in the distance this vegetation presents anappearance oflarge shrub growth, greatly relieving the barrennessof the sand-plain. We had some fine effects of mirage, blue lakesand hazy banks, as of streams afar off. When we reached anelevation that commanded a view of the indistinct Sinai range,we asked the guide to point out to us the " rosy peaks of MountSinai " which Murray sees from Suez when he is there. Theguide refused to believe that you can see a rosy peak one hundred and twenty miles through the air, and confirmed theassertion ofthe inhabitants of Suez that Mount Sinai cannot beseen from there.On our return we overtook a caravan of Bedaween returningfrom the holy mount, armed with long rifles, spears, and hugeswords, swinging along on their dromedaries, ―a Colt's revolverwould put the whole lot of braggarts to flight. One of them wasa splendid specimen of manhood, and we had a chance to study.his graceful carriage, as he ran besides us all the way; he hadthe traditional free air, a fine face and well-developed limbs, andhis picturesque dress of light-blue and buff, somewhat in rags,added to his attractions. It is some solace to the traveler tocall these fellows beggars, since he is all the time conscious thattheir natural grand manner contrasts so strongly with the uncouthness of his more recent and western civilization.Coming back into Suez, from this journey to another continent,we were stopped by two customs-officers, who insisted uponsearching our lunch-basket, to see if we were attempting tosmuggle anything from Asia. We told the guide to give therepresentative of his Highness, with our compliments, a hardboiled egg,Suez itself has not many attractions. But we are much impressed at the hotel by the grave Hindoo waiters, who serve attable in a close- fitting habit, like the present extremely narrowgown worn by ladies, and ludicrous to our eyes accustomed to470 THE COMMERCE OF THE EAST.the flowing robes of the Arabs. They wear also , while waiting,broad-brimmed, white, cork hats, slightly turned up at the rim.It is like being waited on by serious genii. These men also actas chambermaids. Their costume is Bengalee, and would not beat all " style " in Bombay.Suez is reputed a healthful place, enjoying both sea and desertair, free from malaria, and even in summer the heat is tempered.This is what the natives say. The English landlady admits thatit is very pleasant in winter, but the summer is intensely hot ,especially when the Khamscen, or south wind, blows-alwaysthree days at a time-it is hardly endurable; the thermometerstands at 110° to 114° in the shaded halls of the hotel round thecourt. It is unsafe for foreigners to stay here more than twoyears at a time; they are certain to have a fever or some diseaseofthe liver.The town is very much depressed now, and has been ever sincethe opening of the canal. The great railway business fell off atonce, all freight going by water. Hundreds ofmerchants, shippersand forwarders are out of employment. We hear the Khedivemuch blamed for his part in the canal, and people here believethat he regrets it. Egypt, they say, is ruined by this loss oftrade; Suez is killed; Alexandria is ruined beyond reparation,business there is entirely stagnant. What a builder and a destroyer of cities has been the fluctuation of the course of the EastIndia commerce!WⓇ



WE left Suez at eight in the morning by rail, and reachedIsmailia in four hours, the fare-to do justice to theconductor already named-being fourteen francs. Apart of the way the Bitter Lakes are visible, and we can seewhere the canal channel is staked out through them. Next weencountered the Fresh-Water Canal, and came in view of LakeTimsah, through which the Suez canal also flows. This was nodoubt once a fresh-water lake, fed by water taken from the Nileat Bubastis.Ismailia is a surprise; no matter how much you have heard ofit. True, it has something the appearance of a rectangularstreeted town dropped, ready-made, at a railway station on awestern prairie; but Ismailia was dropped by people of goodtaste. In 1860 there was nothing here but desert sand, not adrop of water, not a spear of vegetation. To- day you walk intoa pretty village, of three or four thousand inhabitants, smilingwith verdure. Trees grow along the walks; little gardens bloomby every cottage. Fronting the quay Mohammed Ali, whichextends along the broad Fresh-Water Canal, are the best residences, and many of them have better gardens than you can findelsewhere, with few exceptions, in Egypt.--The first house we were shown was that which had mostinterest for us the Swiss-like chalet of M. de Lesseps; asummerish, cheerful box, furnished simply, but adorned withmany Oriental curiosities. The garden which surrounds it isrich in native and exotic plants, flowers and fruits. Onthis quay471472 THE LOTUS.are two or three barn-like, unfurnished palaces built hastily andcheaply by the Khedive for the entertainment of guests. Thefinest garden, however, and as interesting as any we saw in theEast, is that belonging to M. Pierre, who has charge of the waterworks. In this garden can be found almost all varieties ofEuropean and Egyptian flowers; strawberries were just ripening.We made inquiry here, as we had done throughout Egypt, forthe lotus, the favorite flower of the old Egyptians, the sacredsymbol, the mythic plant, the feeding upon which lulls the conscience, destroys ambition, dulls the memory of all unpleasantthings, enervates the will, and soothes one in a sensuous enjoyment of the day to which there is no tomorrow. It seems tohave disappeared from Egypt with the papyrus.The lotus of the poets I fear never existed, not even in Egypt.The lotus represented so frequently in the sculptures, is awater-plant, the Nymphæa lutea, and is I suppose the plant thatwas once common. The poor used its bulb for food in times ofscarcity. The Indian lotus, or Nelumbium, is not seen in thesculptures, though Latin writers say it existed in Egypt. It mayhave been this that had the lethean properties; although themodern eaters and smokers of Indian hemp appear to be thelegitimate descendants of the lotus-eaters of the poets. However, the lotus whose stalks and buds gave character to a distinct architectural style, we enquired for in vain on the Nile.If it still grows there it would scarcely be visible above water inthe winter. But M. Pierre has what he supposes to be theancient lotus-plant; and his wife gave us seeds of it in the seedvessel a large flat-topped funnel-shaped receptacle, exactly theshape of the sprinkler of a watering-pot. Perhaps this is theplant that Herodotus calls a lily like a rose, the fruit of whichis contained in a separate pod, that springs up from the root inform very like a wasp's nest; in this are many berries fit to beeaten.The garden adjoins the water-works, in which two powerfulpumping- engines raise the sweet water into a stand-pipe, andsend it forward in iron pipes fifty miles along the Suez Canal toPort Said, at which port there is a reservoir that will hold threeISMAILIA. 473days' supply. This stream of fresh water is the sole dependenceof Port Said and all the intervening country.We rode out over the desert on an excellent road, lined withsickly acacias growing in the watered ditches, to station No 6on the canal. The way lies along Lake Timsah. Upon a considerable elevation, called the Heights of El Guisr, is built achateau for the Khedive; and from this you get an extensiveview of the desert, of Lake Timsah and the Bitter Lakes.Below us was the deep cutting of the Canal. El Guisr is thehighest point in the Isthmus, an elevated plateau six miles acrossand some sixty-five feet above the level of the sea. The famousgardens that flourished here during the progress of the excavation have entirly disappeared with the cessation ofthe water fromIsmailia. While we were there an East India bound steamboatmoved slowly up the canal, creating, of course, waves along thebanks, but washing them very little, for the speed is limited tofive miles an hour.Althrough the back streets of Ismailia are crude and unpicturesque, the whole effect of the town is pleasing; and it enjoysa climate that must commend it to invalids. It is dry, free fromdust, and even in summer not too warm, for there is a breezefrom the lakes by day, and the nights are always cooled by thedesert air. Sea-bathing can be enjoyed there the year round.It ought to be a wholesome spot, for there is nothing in sightaround it but sand and salt -water. The invalid who should gothere would probably die shortly of ennui, but he would escapethe death expected from his disease. But Ismailia is well worthseeing. The miracle wrought here by a slender stream of waterfrom the distant Nile, is worthy the consideration of those whohave the solution of the problem of making fertile our westernsand-deserts.We ate at Suez and Ismailia what we had not tasted for severalmonths-excellent fish. The fish ofthe Nile are nearly as good asa New-England sucker, grown in a muddy mill-pond. I sawfishermen angling in the salt canal at Ismailia, and the fish aregood the whole length of it; they are of excellent quality even inthe Bitter Lakes, which are much salter than the Mediterranean474 THE GREAT HIGHWAY.-in fact the bottom of these lakes is encrusted with salt.We took passage towards evening on the daily Egyptianpaquet-boat for Port Said-a puffing little cigar-box of a vessel,hardly fifty feet long. The only accommodation for passengerswas in the forward cabin, which is about the size of an omnibus,and into it were crammed twenty passengers, Greeks, Jews, Koorlanders, English clergymen, and American travelers, and thesurly Egyptian mail-agent, who occupied a great deal of room,and insisted on having the windows closed. Some of us triedperching on the scrap of a deck, hanging our legs over the side;but it was bitterly, cold and a strong wind drove us below. Inthe cabin the air was utterly vile; and when we succeded inopening the hatchway for a moment, the draught chilled us tothe bones.I do not mean to complain of all this; but I want it toappear that sailing on the Suez Canal, especially at night, isnot a pleasure- excursion. It might be more endurable byday; but I do not know. In the hours we had of daylight, Ibecame excessively weary of looking at the steep sand- slopesbetween which we sailed, and of hoping that every turnwould bring us to a spot where we could see over the bank.At eight o'clock we stopped at Katanah for supper, and Iclimbed the bank to see if I could obtain any informationabout the Children of Israel. They are said to have crossedhere. This is the highest point of the low hills whichseparate Lake Menzaleh from the interior lakes. Along thisridge is still the caravan-route between Egypt and Syria; ithas been, for ages unnumbered, the great highway of commerce and ofconquest. This way Thothmes III . , the greatestof the Pharaohs and the real Sesostris, led his legions intoAsia; and this way Cambyses came to repay the visit withinterest.It was so dark that I could see little, but I had a historicsense of all this stir and movement, of the passage of armiesladen with spoils, and of caravans from Nineveh and Damascus. And, although it was my first visit to the place, itseemed strange to see here a restaurant, and waiters hurryingPORT SAID. 475about, and travelers snatching a hasty meal in the night onthis wind-blown sand-hill. And to feel that the stream oftravel is no more along this divide but across it! By thehalf-light I could distinguish some Bedaween loitering about;their little caravan had camped here, for they find it veryconvenient to draw water from the iron pipes.It was quite dark when we presently sailed into Lake Menzaleh, and we could see little. I only know that we held a straightcourse through it for some thirty miles to Port Said. In thedaytime you can see a dreary expanse of morass and lake, afew little islands clad with tamarisks, and flocks of aquaticbirds floating in the water or drawn up on the sand- spits inmartial array-the white spoonbill, the scarlet flamingo, thepink pelican. It was one o'clock in the morning when wesaw the Pharos of Port Said and sailed into the basin, amidmany lights.Port Said was made out of nothing, and it is pretty good.A town of eight to ten thousand inhabitants, with docks,quays, squares, streets, shops, mosques, hospitals, public buildings; in front of our hotel is a garden and public square; allthis fed by the iron pipe and the pump at Ismailia- withoutthis there is no fresh water nearer than Damietta. It is ashabby city, and just now has the over-done appearance ofone of our own western town inflations. But its history isa record of one of the most astonishing achievements of anyage. Before there could be any town here it was necessaryto build a standpoint for it with a dredging machine.Along this coast from Damietta to the gulf of Pelusium ,where once emptied the Pelusiac branch of the Nile, in anarrow strip of sand, separating the Mediterranean fromLake Menzaleh; a high sea often breaks over it. It wouldhave saved much in distance to have carried the canal to thePelusium gulf, but the Mediterranean is shallow there manymiles from shore. The spot on which Port Said now standswas selected for the entrance of the canal, because it was herethat the land can be best approached-the Mediterraneanhaving sufficient depth at only two miles from the shore. Here,476 EMBARKING.therefore, the dredgers began to work. The lake was dredgedfor interior basins; the strip of sand was cut through; theouter harbor was dredged; and the dredgings made theland for the town. Artificial stone was then manufacturedon the spot, and of this the long walls, running out into thesea and protecting the harbor, the quays, and the lighthouseswere built. We saw enormous blocks of this composite ofsand and hydraulic lime, which weigh twenty- five tons each.It is impossible not to respect a city built by such heroiclabor as this; but we saw enough of it in half a day. Theshops are many, and the signs are in many languages, Greekbeing most frequent. I was pleased to read an honest one inEnglish " Blood- Letting and Tooth- picking. " I have nodoubt they all would take your blood. In the streets arevagabonds, adventurers, merchants, travelers, of all nations;and yet you would not call the streets picturesque. Everything is strangely modernized and made uninteresting. Thereis, besides, no sense of permanence here. The trades appearto occupy their shops as if they were booths for the day. Itis a place of transit; a spot of sand amid the waters. I havenever been in any locality that seemed to me so nearlynowhere. A spot for an African bird to light on a momenton his way to Asia. But the world flows through here.Here lie the great vessels in the Eastern trade; all the Mediterranean steamers call here.The Erymanthe is taking in her last freight, and it is timefor us to go on board. Abd- el - Atti has arrived with thebaggage from Cairo. He has the air of one with an important errand. In the hotels, on the street, in the steamer, hismanner is that of one who precedes an imposing embassy.He likes state. If he had been born under the Pharaohs hewould have been the bearer of the flabellum before the king;and he would have carried it majestically, with perhaps ahumorous twinkle in his eye for some comrade by the way.Ahman Abdallah, the faithful, is with him. He it was whomade and brought us the early morning coffee to- day,-recalling the peace of those days on the Nile which now areFAREWELL TO EGYPT. 477in the dim past. It is ages ago since we were hunting in theruins of Abydus for the tomb of Osiris. It was in anotherlife, that delicious winter in Nubia, those weeks followingweeks, free from care and from all the restlessness of thisdriving age."I shouldn't wonder if you were right, Abd- el- Atti, in notwanting to start for Syria sooner. It was very cold on theboat last night.""Not go in Syria before April; always find him bad.'Member what I say when it rain in Cairo? ' This go to besnow in Jerusalem .' It been snow there last week, awfulstorm, nobody go on the road, travelers all stop, not get anywhere. So I hunderstand.""What is the prospect for landing at Jaffa tomorrowmorning?""Do' know, be sure. We hope for the better. "We get away beyond the breakwater, as the sun goes down.The wind freshens, and short waves hector the long sea sweli.Egypt lies low; it is only a line; it fades from view.油K

BuchbindeHans Her


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CHAPTER I.AT THE GATES OF THE EAST.The Mediterranean-The East unlike the West-A World risked for aWoman-An Unchanging World and a Fickle Sea-Still an Orient-Old Fashions-A Journey without Reasons-Offfor the OrientLeaving Naples-A Shaky Court-A Deserted District- Ruins ofPæstum-Temple of Neptune-Entrance to Purgatory-SafetyValves of the World-Enterprising Natives-Sunset on the SeaSicily-Crete-Our Passengers-The Hottest place on Record-AnAmerican Tourist-An Evangelical Dentist-On a Secret Mission-The Vanquished Dignitary .....CHAPTER II.WITHIN THE PORTALS.Africa-Alexandria-Strange Contrasts-A New World-NatureFirst View of the Orient-Hotel Europe-Mixed NationalitiesThe First Backsheesh-Street Scenes in Alexandria-Familiar Pictures Idealized-Cemetery Day-A Novel Turn Out-A MoslemCemetery-New Terrors for Death-Pompey's Pillar-Our FirstCamel-Along the Canal-Departed Glory-A set of Fine Fellows-Our Handsome Dragomen-Bazaars-Universal Good HumorAContinuous Holiday-Private life in Egypt-Invisible Blackness-The Land of Color and the Sun-A Casino..CHAPTER III.EGYPT OF TO-DAY.PAGE.17..... 29Railways -OurValiantDragomen-AHand-to-Hand Struggle-Alexandria to Cairo-Artificial Irrigation-An Arab Village-The NileEgyptian Festivals-Pyramids ofGeezeh-Cairo -Natural Queries. 43X CONTENTS.CHAPTER IV.´CAIRO.ARhapsody-At Shepherd's -Hotel life , Egyptian plan-English Noblemen-Life in the Streets -The Valuable Donkey and his DriverThe " swell thing " in Cairo-A hint for Central Park-Eunuchs"Yankee Doodles" of Cairo --A Representative Arab-SelectingDragomen-The Great Business of Egypt-An Egyptian MarketPlace A Substitute for Clothes-Dahabeëhs of the Nile-A Protracted Negotiation -Egyptian wiles……….CHAPTER V.ON THE BAZAAR.Sight Seeing in Cairo -An Eastern Bazaar-Courteous MerchantsThe Honored Beggar-Charity to be Rewarded-A Moslem Funeral-The Gold Bazaar-Shopping for a Necklace-Conducting a BrideHome-A Partnership matter-Early Marriages and DecayLongings for Youth .....CHAPTER VI.MOSQUES AND TOMBS.4861The Sirocco-The Desert-The Citadel of Cairo-Scene of the Massacreof the Memlooks-The World's Verdict-The Mosque of Mohammed Ali -Tomb of the Memlook Sultans-Life out of Death.... 72CHAPTER VII.MOSLEM WORSHIP-THE CALL TO PRAYER.An Enjoyable City-Definition of Conscience-" Prayer is better thanSleep "-Call of the Muezzin-Moslems at Prayer-Interior of aMosque-Oriental Architecture -The Slipper Fitters-DevotionalWashing-An Inman's Supplications .....CHAPTER VIII.THE PYRAMIDS.78Ancient Sepulchres-Grave Robbers-The Poor Old Mummy-TheOldest Monument in the World-First View of the Pyramids-Theresident Bedaween-Ascending the Steps -Patent Elevators-AView from the Top- The Guide's Opinions-Origin of " Murray'sGuide Book "-Speculations on the Pyramids-The InteriorAbsolute Night -A Taste of Death-The Sphinx-Domestic Lifein a Tomb-Souvenirs of Ancient Egypt-Backsheesh! …………………. 85CONTENTS. xiCHAPTER IX.PREPARATIONS FOR A VOYAGE.AWeighty Question-The Seasons Bewitched-Poetic Dreams Realized-Egyptian Music-Public Garden-A Wonderful Rock-Its Patrons-The Playing Band-Native Love Songs -The HowlingDerweeshes-An Exciting Performance-The Shakers put toShame-Descendants of the Prophet-An Ancient Saracenic Home-The Land of the Flea and the Copt-Historical CuriositiesPreparing for our Journey-Laying in of Medicines and Rockets-A Determination to be Liberal -Official life in Egypt-An Interview with the Bey-Paying for our Rockets—A Walking Treasury-Waiting for Wind-......CHAPTER X.ON THE NILE.100On Board the " Rip Van Winkle "-A Farewell Dinner-The ThreeMonths Voyage Commenced-On the Nile-Our Pennant's Device-Our Dahabeëh—Its Officers and Crew-Types of Egyptian Races-The Kingdom of the " Stick "-The false Pyramid of Maydoon-A Night on the River-Curious Crafts-Boat Races on the NileNative Villages -Songs of the Sailors-Incidents of the Day-TheCopts-The Patriarch-The Monks of Gebel é Tayr-Disappointment all Round-A Royal Luxury-The Banks of the Nile-GumArabic-Unfair Reports of us-Speed of our Dahabeëh-EgyptianBread Hasheesh- Smoking-Egyptian Robbers-Sitting in Darkness -Agriculture -Gathering of Taxes -Successful Voyaging... 116CHAPTER XI.PEOPLE ON THE RIVER BANK.Sunday on the Nile-A Calm-A Land of Tombs-A New DivinityBurial of a Child-A Sunday Companion on Shore-A Philosophical People -No Sunday Clothes -The Aristocratic Bedaween-TheSheykh-Rare Specimens for the Centennial-Tracts NeededWoman's Rights-Pigeons and Cranes-Balmy Winter NightsTracking-Copying Nature in Dress-Resort of Crocodiles-AHermit's Cave-Waiting for Nothing-Crocodile Mummies-TheBoatmen's Song-Furling Sails-Life Again-Pictures on the Nile. 140CHAPTER XII.SPENDING CHRISTMAS ON THE NILE.Independence in Spelling-Asioot-Christmas Day-The AmericanConsul-A Visit to the Pasha-Conversing by an Interpreter-TheGhawazees at Home-Ancient Sculpture-Bird's Eye View of theNile Our Christmas Dinner-Our Visitor-Grand Reception- TheFire Works -Christmas Eve on the Nile..... 156xii CONTENTS.CHAPTER XIII.SIGHTS AND SCENES ON THE RIVER.Ancient and Modern Ruins-We Pay Toll-Cold Weather-Night Sailing-Farshoot-A Visit from the Bey-The Market- Place-TheSakiyas or Water Wheels-The Nile is Egypt......CHAPTER XIV.MIDWINTER IN EGYPT.Midwinter in Egypt-Slaves of Time-Where the Water Jars are Made-Coming to Anchor and howit was Done-New Years-" Smits "Copper Popularity-Great Strength of the Women-Conscripts forthe Army-Conscription a Good Thing-On the Threshold ofThebes....167175CHAPTER XV.AMONG THE RUINS OF THEBES.Situation of the City-Ruins-Questions-Luxor-Karnak-Glorification ofthe Pharaohs-Sculptures in Stone-The Twin Colossi-FourHundred Miles in Sixteen Days..CHAPTER XVI.HISTORY IN STONE....186A Dry City-A Strange Circ*mstance-A Pleasant Residence-Life onthe Dahabeëh-Illustrious Visitors -Nose- Rings and Beauty-LittleFatimeh-A Mummy Hand and Thoughts upon it -Plunder of theTombs-Exploits of the Great Sesostris-Gigantic Statues andtheir Object - Skill of Ancient Artists - Criticisms - ChristianChurches and Pagan Temples-Society -A Peep into an AncientHarem-Statue of Memnon-Mysteries -Pictures of Heroic Girls-Womenin History..... . 193CHAPTER XVII.KARNAK.An Egyptian Carriage-Wonderful Ruins-The Great Hall of SethiThe Largest Obelisk in The World-A City of Temples and Palaces. 212CHAPTER XVIII .ASCENDING THE RIVER.Ascending the River-An Exciting Boat Race-Inside a Sugar Factory-Setting Fire to a Town-Who Stole the Rockets? -Striking Contrasts -A Jail -The Kodi or Judge-What we saw at AssouanA Gale-Ruins of Kom Ombos -Mysterious Movement-Land ofEternal Leisure.... 217CONTENTS. xiiiCHAPTER XIX.PASSING THE CATARACT OF THE NILE.Passing the Cataract of the Nile -Nubian Hills in Sight-Island ofElephantine-Ownership of the Cataract-Difficulties of the Ascent-Negotiations for a Passage-Items about Assouan-Off for theCataracts -Our Cataract Crew-First Impressions of the Cataract-In the Stream-Excitement-Audacious Swimmers-Close Steering -A Comical Orchestra-The Final Struggle -Victory-Abovethe Rapids-The Temple of Isis-Ancient Kings and ModernConquerors.... 234CHAPTER XX.ON THE BORDERS OF THE Desert.Ethiopia-Relatives of the Ethiopians-Negro Land-Ancestry of theNegro -Conversion Made Easy-A Land of Negative BlessingsCool air from the Desert-Abd- el- Atti's Opinions-A Land ofComfort -Nubian Costumes —Turning the Tables -The GreatDesert-Sin, Grease and Taxes ... 254CHAPTER XXI.ETHIOPIA.Primitive Attire-The Snake Charmer-A House full of Snakes-AWrit ofEjectments -Natives -The Tomb of Mohammed-Disasters-A Dandy Pilate-Nubian Beauty-Opening a Baby's Eyes-ANubian Pigville..... 263CHAPTER XXII.LIFE IN THE TROPICS-WADY HALFA.Life in the Tropics -Wady Halfa-Capital of Nubia-The Centre ofFashion-The Southern Cross -Castor Oil Plantations-Justice toa Thief-Abd- el- Atti's Court-Mourning for the Dead-Extreme ofour Journey-A Comical Celebration-The March of Civilization. 278CHAPTER XXIII.APPROACHING THE SECOND CATARACT.Two Ways to See It-Pleasures of Canal Riding-Bird's Eye View ofthe Cataracts -Signs of Wealth-Wady Halfa-A Nubian BelleClassic Beauty—A Greek Bride —Interviewing a Crocodile -Jokingwith a Widow-A Model Village ....... 287Xiv CONTENTS.CHAPTER XXIV.GIANTS IN STONE.The Colossi of Aboo Simble, the largest in the World-BombastExploits of Remeses II. -A Mysterious Temple-Fêting AncientDeities -Guardians of the Nile-The Excavated Rock-The Temple-A Row of Sacred Monkeys-Our· Last View of The Giants .. 296CHAPTER XXV.FLITTING THROUGH NUBIA.Learning the Language-Models of Beauty-Cutting up a CrocodileEgyptian Loafers -A Modern David -A Present-- Our MenagerieThe Chameleon-Woman's Rights -False Prophets -IncidentsThe School Master at Home-Confusion-Too Much ConversionCharity-Wonderful Birds at Mecca..CHAPTER XXVI..... 304MYSTERIOUS PHLE.Leave "well enough " Alone-The Myth of Osiris -The Heights ofBiggeh-Cleopatra's Favorite Spot -A Legend-Mr. FiddleDreamland-Waiting for a Prince —An Inland Excursion-Quarries-Adieu....CHAPTER XXVII.RETURNING320Downward Run-Kidnapping a Sheykh-Blessed with Relatives -Making the Chute-Artless Children-A Model of Integrity-JusticeAn Accident-Leaving Nubia-A Perfect Shame ...CHAPTER XXVIII.MODERN FACTS AND ANCIENT MEMORIES.The Mysterious Pebble-Ancient Quarries-Prodigies of Labor-Humorin Stone-A Simoon-Famous Grottoes -Naughty AttractionsBogus Relics-Antiquity Smith ...CHAPTER XXIX.THE FUTURE OF THE MUMMY'S SOUL.332343Ancient Egyptian Literature- Mummies-A Visit to the Tombs -Disturbing the Dead-The Funeral Ritural-Unpleasant ExplorationsA Mummy in Pledge-A Desolate Way-Buried Secrets -Buildingfor Eternity-Before the Judgment Seat-Weighed in the BalanceThe Habitation of the Dead-Illuminated -Accommodations forthe Mummy-The Pharaoh of the Exodus-A Baby Charon-Bats. 358CONTENTS. XVCHAPTER XXX.FAREWELL TO THEBES.Social Festivities -An Oriental Dinner-Dancing Girls-Honored bythe Sultan-The Native Consul -Finger Feeding-A DanceAncient Style of Dancing-The Poetry of Night-Karnak by Moonlight-Amusem*nts at Luxor-Farewell to Thebes..CHAPTER XXXI.LOITERING BY THE WAY."Very Grammatick” —The Lying in Temple—A Holy Man-Scarecrows-Asinine Performers-Antiquity-Old Masters-Profit and Loss-Hopeless " Fellahs "-Lion's Oil -A Bad Reputation-An Egyptian Mozart..CHAPTER XXXII.JOTTINGS.Mission School-Education of Women-Contrasts-A Mirage-Tracksof Successive Ages-Bathers -Tombs of the Sacred Bulls-Religion and Grammar-Route to Darfoor -Winter Residence of theHoly Family-Grottoes -Mistaken Views-Dust and AshesOsman Bey-A Midsummer's Night Dream-Ruins of MemphisDeparted Glory-A Second Visit to the Pyramids of Geezeh-AnArtificial Mother....375887.406CHAPTER XXXIII.THE KHEDIVE.At Gezereh-Aboo Yusef the Owner-Cairo Again—A Question-TheKhedive-Solomon and the Viceroy-The Khedive's Family Expenses-Another Joseph-Personal Government-Docks of CairoRaising Mud-Popular Superstitions -Leave Taking..CHAPTER XXXIV.THE WOODEN MAN.Visiting a Harem--A Reception-The Khedive at Home-Ladies of theHarem-Wife of Tufik Pasha-The Mummy-The Wooden ManDiscoveries of Mariette Bey-Egypt and Greece ComparedLearned Opinions...426440CHAPTER XXXV.ON THE WAY HOME.Leaving our Dahabeëh-The Baths in Cairo -Curious Mode of Execution-The Guzeereh Palace -Empress Eugenia's Sleeping Room-xvi CONTENTS.Medallion of Benjamin Franklin in Egypt - Heliopolis - TheBedaween Bride-Holy Places-The Resting Place of the VirginMary Fashionable Drives-The Shoobra Palace -ForbiddenBooks-A Glimpse of a Bevy of Ladies-Uncomfortable Guardians. 450-CHAPTER XXXVI.BY THE RED SEA.Following the Track of the Children of Israel-Routes to Suez-Temples -Where was the Red Sea Crossed? -In sight of the BitterLakes -Approaching the Red Sea-Faith-The Suez Canal-TheWells of Moses-A Sentimental Pilgrimage-Price of one of theWells-Miriam of Marah-Water ofthe Wells-Returning to Suez-A Caravan of Bedaweens-Lunch Baskets searched by CustomOfficers-The Commerce of the East..CHAPTER XXXVII.WESTWARD HO.Leaving Suez-Ismailia-The Lotus-A Miracle-Egyptian Steamer—Information Sought-The Great Highway-Port Said -Abd- el- Attiagain-Great Honors Lost-Farewell to Egypt………………....459471THE

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