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and hubbub of nations, and jargons, and customs, and passions, and fool eries, crammed and conflicting together, as might well have obliterated all remembrances and images of any objects less striking than those of Egypt.
The seamanship too was incomparable, as might be guessed from the fact, of which they were assured, that the superannuated captain of the frigate had never been to sea before his present voyage; that at the age of seventy he had espoused a relation of the Capudan Pasha's, and obtained in consequence his appointment to the frigate: his nephew, a young man, had rather more experience, and held a station similar to that of first lieutenant in our ships.
“ At night the spectacle on board was perhaps one of the most striking which persons unaccustomed to venture with Turkish mariners can possibly witness. The ship seemed to be left pretty much to her own discretion; every officer of the watch being fast asleep, the port holes all open, an enormous quantity of canvass let loose, and the passengers between decks, with paper lantherns, snoozing over their lighted pipes; while the sparks from these pipes, with pieces of ignited fun. gus, were flying in all directions. Now and then an unexpected roll called forth murmuring ejaculations of ' Alla!' or Mahmoud!' and a few were seen squatting singly, counting their prayers by their beads."
One anccdote in this unparalleled story of a voyage, is exquisitely characteristic of the true believers. Dr. C. having casually met with a sextant, which had been taken from a French prisoner, made an observation to ascertain the ship's position, and sent a respectful message to the captain, to inform him of the latitude, and the probable distance from Rhodes, Finica bay, Cyprus, &c. He was immediately summoned, and asked how he could pretend to know. The doctor mentioned the sextant, and the observations daily practised on board English and other ships. The sextant was instantly ordered to make its appearance.
“This instrument being altogether incomprehensible to him, he contented himself with viewing it in every direction, except that in which it might be used; and, stroking his long beard, said to a Ragusan, “ Thus it is always with these poor djours (infidels), they can make nothing out without some peeping contri. vance of this kind: now we Turks require no sex tants—we (pointing with his finger to his forehead) we have our sextants here.'”
The adventurers approached and admired the mountainous coast of Lscia, sublimely irradiated, at the time, with lightnings; passed close to Rhodes; crossed the mouth of the gulf of Glaucus; and quitted the ship at the island of Cos, where they staid long enough to collect a number of antique inscriptions, and to witness the refinement of Mahomedan jurisprudence, in a conviction of homicide by implication. A young man had destroyed himself in consequence of his being unsuccessful in bis addresses to a young woman; the father of the girl was arrested and prosecuted on the incontrovertible allegation, that “ if he had not bad a daughter, the deceased would not have fallen in love; consequently, he would not have been disappointed; consequently,he would not haveswallowed poison; consequently, he would not have died.” The father was sentenced to pay, to the state we suppose, eighty piastres, the rated value of the young man's life.
An old crazy caique, manned by four men of the island of Casos, was engaged for a run to Patmos, and any other spot in the Archipelago. At Patmos, liaving first rendered a very important service to a party of French prisoners of the army of Egypt, who had been landed there on their way back to France, our active adventurers eagerly invaded the library of the
monastery of the Apocalypse; and a highly entertaining account is given of their researches and negociations. The whole collection of books was in a state of extreme neglect and disorder. The printed books indeed had the accommodation of shelves, and some of them were in good condition; and though the visitants soon discovered that the superior could not read, he said those were his favourites. Being asked respecting a pile of parchment volumes which were seen on the floor at the end of the apartment, evidentiy in the manner of rubbish, he said with an expression of contempt, they were manuscripts.
“It was indeed,” says Dr.C.“ a moment in which a literary traveller might be supposed to doubt the evidence of his senses, for the whole of this contemned heap consisted of Greek manuscripts, and some of them were of the highest antiquity."
Our author fell to digging in this heap with the most avaricious curiosity, and found the fairest specimen of Grecian calligraphy which has descended to modern times,a copy of the twenty-four first dialogues of Plato, written throughout upon vellum, in the same exquisite character.' This and a few others were purchased, and, by means of a great deal of management, clandestinely got on board the caique: the monks were extremely solicitous, and with reason, that the people of the island, and the Turkish authorities, should not know that they had touched a trifle of money.
Several of the islands of the Archipelago were visited, and among them Paros and Antiparos, on the marble and the astonishing grotto of which ou author has a number of very interesting observations. At length the course was shaped directly for Athens, and the cape of Sunium was approached amidst a rare combination of enchantments.
“ We had such a glorious prospect, that we could recollect nothing like it: such a contrast of colours, such an association of the wonders of nature and of art, such perfection of grand and beautiful perspective, as no expression of perceptible properties can convey to the minds of those who have not beheld the objects themselves. Being well aware of the transitory nature of impressions made upon the memory by sights of this kind, the author wrote a description of this scene, while it was actually before his eyes: but how poor is the effect produced by detailing the parts of a view in a narrative, which ought to strike as a whole upon the sense! He may tell indeed of the dark blue sea, streaked with hues of deepest purple—of embrowning shadows-of lights effulgent as the sun-of marble pillars beaming a radiant brightness upon lofty precipices, whose sides are diversified by refreshing verdure, by hoary mosses, and by gloomy and naked rocks; or by brighter surfaces, reflecting the most vivid and varied tintsorange, red, and gray: to these he may add an account of distant summits, more intensely azured than the clear and cloudless sky—of islands dimly seen through silvery mists upon the wide expanse of water, shining towards the horizon, as it were a 'sea of glass;'-—and w'sen he has exhausted his vocabulary of every colour and shape exhibited by the face of nature or by the works of art, although he have not deviated from the truth, in any part of his description, how little and how ineffectual has been the result of his undertaking!"
The considerably protracted and most active sojourn at Athens was animated with the genuine fire of that fine enthusiasm, which every classical traveller would recognize the necessity of affecting, if he did not feel; a luxury which some of the home-confined readers of taste may be tempted to ask, somewhat querulously, why it should have been Dr. C.'s lot, rather than theirs, to revel in. The highest advantage was afforded
for a discriminative and minute survey and investigation of the beauty and sublimity lingering in decay, and on the eve of departing, never to revive in such captivating forms, in any other spot on the globe, -by the kindness and intelligence of monsieur Fauvel, the French consul, the friend of every traveller of taste; and still more by the friendly companionship and extraordinary accomplishments of don Battista Lusieri, whom there would be no hazard in pronouncing to be, of all the persons who have ever visited Athens, the individual best qualified to perpetuate, by the pencil, the images of those objects which are themselves sinking so fast into destruction. Those who have read lord Elgin's “ Memoran. dumn,” are apprized that this artist was drawn by his lordship from Naples into Greece, where it seems he has remained through the long series of subsequent years, indefatigably employed, chiefly at Athens, in works which ought to find their way to the hands of those subsidiary artists in the north-west of Europe, who could so faithfully and so elegantly effect a thousand repetitions of them.
" It might,” says Dr. C. " have been said of the time he had spent in Athens, as of Apelles, “ Nulla dies sine linea;” but such was the extraordinary skill and application shown in the designs he was then completing, that every grace and beauty of the sculpture, every fair and exquisite proportion, every trace of the injuries which time had effected upon the building, every vein in the marble, were visible in the drawing—and in such perfection, that even the nature and qualities of the stone itself might be recognized in the contour. Whoever may hereafter be the possessor of these drawings, will have, in the mere outlines (for it is impossible this artist can ever finish the collection he has made), a representation of the antiquities and beautiful scenery of Greece, inferior to nothing but the actual sight of them. Hitherto no Mæcenas has dignified himself by any thing deserving the title of a patron of such excellence. Many have bought his designs, when he could be induced to part with them by which means he has barely obtained subsistence; and he is too passionately attached to the sources which Athens has afforded to his genius, to abandon Greece, even for the neglect which, in his letters to the author, he complains of having experienced.”
We do not hear, from any quarter, of any project (quite a practicable project it would be, undoubtedly), for obtaining a selection of those performances, for the purpose of preparing a work which might, in the combined character of truth and animation, surpass every preceding graphical exhibition of the finest features of Greece, even, on an estimate of all the excellences of all the representations together, that of De ChoiseulGouffier.
The readers of lord Elgin's tract will also recollect that most anomalous personage, Theodore the Calmuc, as one of the corps placed under Lusieri's direction. Dr. C. saw him in this service at Athens; and he is a sample of humanity excellently fitted to put to silence the philosophizings that would maintain the native mental equality of human creatures.
“ With the most decided physiognomy of the wildest of his native tribes, although as much humanized in his appearance as it was possible to make him, by the aid of European dress and habits, he still retained some of the original characteristics of his countrymen; and, among others, a true Scythian relish for spirituous liquor. By the judicious administration of brandy, Lusieri would elicit from him, for the use of his patron, specimens of his art, combining the most astonishing genius with the strictest accuracy and the most exquisite taste. Theodore presented a marvellous example of the force of natural genius, un. subdued by the most powerful obstacles." Educated in slavery-trained to the business of his profession beneath the active cudgels of his Russian masters
having also imbibed with his earliest impressions the servile propensities and sensual appetites of the tyrants he had been taught to revere-this extraordi. Dary man arrived at Athens, like another Euphranor, rivalling all that the fine arts had produced, under circumstances the most favourable to their birth and maturity. The talents of Theodore, as a painter, were not confined, as commonly is the case among Russian artists, to mere works of imitation: although he could copy every thing, he could invent also; and his mind partook largely of the superior powers of original genius. With the most surprising ability he restored and inserted into his drawings all the sculpture of which parts only remained in the mutilated bas-reliefs and buildings of the Acropolis. Besides this, he delineated, in a style of superior excellence, the same sculptures, according to the precise state of decay in which they at present exist."
Notwithstanding the charms of a Grecian landscape and sky, the brilliant effect of the structures of a marble, unstained by time, the open, day-light prominence, if we may so express it, of the city, the lively cast of the ideas associated in every mind with Athens, and we may add, the habitual vivacity of our author's temperament, the aspect of the place, as he approached it, bore, to his imagination, a funereal character. Tombs and monuments, indeed, on the road from the Piræeus, prepared him for this impression, and
“ As we drew near,” he says, “ to the walls, we beheld the vast Cucro. PIAN CITADEL, crowned with temples that originated in the veneration once paid to the meinory of the illustrious dead, surrounded by objects telling the same theme of sepulchral grandeur, and now monuments of departed greatness, mouldering in all the solemnity of ruin. So paramount is this funereal charac. ter, in the approach to Athens from the Piræeus, that as we passed the hill of the Museum, which was, in fact, an ancient cemetery of the Athenians, we might have imagined ourselves to be among the tombs of Telmessis, from the number of the sepulchres hewn in the rock, and from the antiquity of the workraanship, evidently not of later date than any thing in Asia Minor."
He takes this, and indeed several other occasions, of insisting on the remarkable fact, established by innumerable evidences, of the sepulchral signs of the ancient temples. This he had, with a just confidence, assert. ed against Bryant, in describing the ancient monuments on the shores of the Cimmerian Bosphorus, in vol. I. of these travels.
" The discussion which has been founded on the question, whether the Egyptian pyramids were tombs or temples, seems altogether nugatory: being one, they were necessarily the other. The sor08, in the chamber of the great pyramid, which indisputably determines its sepulchral origin, as decidedly es. tablishes the certainty that it was also a place ot religious worship:
• Et tot templa Deum Romæ, quot in urbe sepulchra
* Heroum, numerare licet.' -Prudentius, lib. 1. “The sanctity of the Acropolis of Athens owed its origin to the sepulchre of Cecrops; and, without this leading cause of veneration, the numerous tem. ples with which it was afterwards adorned, would never have been erected. The same may be said of the temple of Venus, at Papbos, built over the tomb of Cinyras, the father of Adonis--of Apollo Didy mæns, at Miletus, over the grave of Cleomachus; with many others, alluded to both by Eusebius and Clemens Alexandrinus." p. 400.
There is something very striking in this fact, as disclosing some kind of conviction, in the minds of a benighted race, that men might become greater, or associated to something greater, by dying; as well as their inextinguishable sense of the absolute necessity of having gods, that is, superhuman objects for their passions of hope and fear.
ORIGINAL POETRY.-FOR THE PORT FOLIO.
TOUCHES AT THE TIMES, No. II.
And now fair woman's damask cover'd throne,
Now gout and gluttony, supremely blest,