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In passing through the gallery or portico we observed a great quantity of rich bed-furniture, consisting of purple velvet embroidered with gold, which is always sent with the bride and displayed for public admiration upon these occasions. We had heard that Ioannina was celebrated for the beauty and fine complexion of its females; and certainly we were not disappointed when we entered into the apartment where a party of the most charming women in this capital were collected together. They sąt in a large circle round the room, superbly attired; but the liquid lustre of their eyes put to shame the jewels that sparkled in their raven tresses. The reflection came forcibly across the mind, what brutes the men must be who could desert the society of such masterpieces of excelling nature, to indulge in the low gratifications of riotous intemperance! By the smiles and whispers that went round the circle, we soon perceived that our appearance excited much curiosity, and that our persons and every article of our dress became subjected to the minutest scrutiny. We were seated on each side the little bride, who was scarcely twelve years
and was comparatively so girlish that it required a great stretch of imagination to consider her in the character of a matron. She was magnificently dressed, the value of the jewels with which she was adorned being estimated at about 2000l. ; an ancient family appendage (that madasòn xrñnce of the Greek tragedians) in the shape of an old nurse, stood near her, and this Argus was actively employed in guarding her charge and repelling the advances of Signore Melas, who was anxious to impress the marks of his affection upon the lips of his betrothed. One of the Albanian guards having brought in coffee, the young lady arose and with a very pretty air handed it to Mr. Parker and myself, who were obliged to suffer this inversion of the right order of things and accommodate ourşelves to the custom of the place.
We observed that her manners and deportment were accompanied with a great share of mildness and affability; but her features had not sufficiently expanded to judge of their expression : it appeared to us that her countenance might become in