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ni, the bold and hardy dragoon of the plains of Muscovy, could not brook the idea of being obliged to join the ranks of vulgar infantry; nor our sailor-cook Francisco that of trudging over rocks and precipices on foot like a "land-lubber," instead of navigating the wavy mountains on the back of a half-foundered rozinante. As for Selim, ever since he has (in practice, at least) abjured the laws of the Prophet with respect to meat and drink, he pays but little attention to our laws, affecting rather the society and habits of his graceless elders in iniquity, than his former abstemious life and watchful attendance upon my person.
This hopeful trio were concerting a scheme to hire a small Greek xebec, and with her make off to Rhodes, leaving us to the tender mercies of the mountaineers of Macri.
We discovered the plot in time to defeat it, and, by a judicious application of backshee to the "itching palm" of the Turkish aga, a full complement of horses was forthcoming immediately.
Our tents, which had been struck in the morning, with our luggage, were soon upon the backs of the animals; our own English saddles were next placed upon the least unseemly individuals of the drove, when the word was given to advance. When we had cleared the outskirts of the vil lage and suburbs of ruins, a halt was made in order to call the roll and detect delinquents. Only one was found want. ing, and that was Monsieur François, whose Gallic vanity had been so piqued at the unsuccessful issue of the morning plot, that he was either ashamed to meet us, or had been drowning his ire in the Bacchanalian stream which, since our arrival in the Gulf, had not ceased to flow from the vineclad sides of Anticragus. We sent back for him, when the aga ferreted him out of the den of some Greek caffijee, and drove the straggler, nolens volens, to the main body of the advancing troop.
Again en route, we began to study the physiognomies of
THIEVES BY THE WAYSIDE.
our Greek attendants, to elicit, if possible, some grains of consolation from the workings of the inner man, as they might be shadowed forth through their dark eyes and expressive features. But a sorrier set of villains I had never before beheld, belonging to the nations of Christendom. Their language being to us unintelligible, we could hold no converse with them, to ascertain their sentiments, or to propitiate the scapegrace crew. Giovanni here had the advantage of us; and his two companions, being apt scholars, had picked up Greek enough on board the brig to find favour with their new friends.
Ours was not an enviable situation, I assure you; it was like putting to sea with a mutinous crew, forced on board by the authorities of the port, with the prospect of a renewed revolt upon the high seas.
In the hasty making up of our baggage in the morning, some of our sacks were not well packed and secured; the corner of a comfortable shawl, to which I had become much attached from its usefulness, was seen peeping out by the Argus eyes of one of our muleteers, who stole clandestinely into a thicket, abstracted the black angora Cachmere, and hid it, I suppose, under some stone, from whence, on his return, he will reclaim it, and, like another Alcmæon, bear it as a "nuptial present" to his beloved Alphesibœa.
We made but a short journey the first day, and encamped early, in order to have a parley with our principal guide as to the route we were to pursue. We suspect that Giovanni was before us again in this business, and had concerted measures with him to oblige us to take the most direct route to Smyrna, and thwart our intentions of making a north. erly course over the Taurus to the upper plains of the Meander.
He succeeded too well, for the guide assured us that there was no path over the mountains other than for pedestrians; but, if we were disposed to send our luggage round by a more VOL. II.-T
western route, whereby it might reach us again in four days, he was ready to conduct us on foot over the snowy summit of the mountains, and in two days reach the site of Laodicea.
This might have done very well for the gentlemen; but it was rather too Amazonian a task for me to undertake.
The mere pedestrian part of the performance I might now feel myself quite equal to; but then the idea of taking an al fresco nap on the snowy crest of the Taurus was what I had no ambition for, so long as I could be permitted to accompany my comfortable tent and my elastic mattress whithersoever a horse could be made to carry them.
Our first day's journey was over the plain at the head of the Gulf of Macri, and in the afternoon we encamped in a beautiful grove of oaks at the base of one of the spurs of the Taurus, which, branching off from the principal chain towards the south, crossed our path, forming the promontory of Caria on the western side of the Gulf of Macri.
The next morning we were very early in the saddle, that we might ascend the eastern acclivity of the mountain be. fore old Sol could speed his fiery arrows after us from above the heavy sea fog.
The summit attained, we had a glorious view over sea and land, mountain, plain, and river.
Towards the north the towering ridge of the main branch of the western Taurus rose high above our heads, its splendid crest of snow glittering in the sunbeams. To the east were spread before us the beautiful plain and inner bay of Macri, with the shaggy head of old Anticragus nodding over them, and at its base the temples, tombs, and theatre of Telmessus were easily descried through our telescope.
Towards the south, spread like a map before us, was the immense Gulf of Glaucus, dotted with numerous islands; and far beyond was the broad expanse of the Mediterranean Sea. One little object caught our eyes that caused in us no enviable sensations, and put an end to all our grandiloquent
rhapsodies on the sublime scene before and around us. was no other than our own little brig, standing out of the gulf under a heavy press of sail. She probably had the day before been met by the daily "inbat," had been compelled to lie to or anchor for the night, and now, with a favourable breeze, she was bounding off for Rhodes, which island we had also in full view. Oh! how I then longed to be on board of her once more, content to buffet with the mountain wave rather than climb the mountain rocks in such company as we had around us.
A SINISTER OMEN.
A trifling incident at the same moment occurred, which in the olden time would have sent such unhappy wanderers as we were directly to the footstool of old King Car, the inventor of augury. A flight of herons was seen us sailing over our little brig, and winging their arrow flight directly towards the mountain on which we stood; to all appearance they had just arrived from Upper Egypt, where we had before seen them in such prodigious numbers, and were wending their way towards the fens of Poland and the marshes of Holland, where also we had on other occasions seen these tribes ruralizing during the summer months. After careering over our heads, they alighted near a pool at the base of the Carian range, one of the mountain thrones of King Car the seer. Half inclined to be superstitious, I considered this incident of evil import for our future journey, and was on the point of invoking the shade of Caria's great high-priest for a solution of the portentous omen, when, amid the grace. ful gyratory movement of the birds above us, the sharp crack of a rifle aimed at them startled me into the conviction that the times of omens and augurs had passed away; that the arts and crafts of the diviner, and the power of pa. gan priestcraft, were together quietly sleeping in the tomb of the great nations that once peopled in myriads these now deserted vales and mountains; else had that fatal ball better have been sped to the heart of the sacrilegious offender,
ere he dared direct it towards the birds of omen during their mysterious aerial evolutions.
We and our bark had a fair start; who can tell which of us may arrive in safety at Smyrna, the goal we both are aiming for?
When the mind is at ease, and free from all extraordinary cares beyond those naturally incident to this mode of travelling, one becomes attached to and delighted with this Bedouin kind of life, preferring it to steaming up and down long rivers, darting with meteoric rapidity over iron rails, or even luxuriating in a landau and four over the fine Macadamized roads of Europe, and finding a well-appointed hotel at every stage.
Neither the vegetating process of lazily floating up and down the Nile, nor the soul-inspiring sensation produced by being lifted over the mountain billows, has so great attrac tions either for the sluggish or the intrepid and active trav eller, as this same wandering caravan life, fraught as it always is with more or less of privation and danger.
It so wins upon one's feelings, that I am confident, were I to pursue it for a year or two, I should feel a repugnance to ever returning again to the narrow and hedged ways of civil. ized life.
One's home is wherever one listeth, on the mountain top or in the shady grove, pursuing information or pleas. ure, or quietly vegetating for a time amid some rural scenes, or in a secluded dell apart from all the world. Seasons can be followed up with the daily retiring or advancing of their prime mover, the Sun, thus maintaining a uni formity of temperature throughout the year. Independent of all restraint, a slight touch at either bridle-rein, and one's onward course is varied at will or reversed at pleasure.
Our position at present with respect to servants and other followers is much more agreeable than during the first days of our journey; for we are now within the reach of a per