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NOTES

NOTES

TO

THE POEMS.

Note 1, page 36. Written after swimming from Sestos to Abydos. On the 3d of May, 1810, while the Salsette (Captain Bathurst) was lying in the Dardanelles, Lieutenant Ekenhead of that frigate and the writer of these rhymes swam from the European shore to the Asiatic-by-the-by, from Abydos to Sestos would have been more correct. The whole distance from the place whence we started to our landing on the other side, including the length we were carried by the current, was computed by those on board the frigate at upwards of four English miles; though the actual breadth is barely one. The rapidity of the current is such that no boat can row directly across, and it may in some measure be estimated from the circumstance of the whole distance being accomplished by one of the parties in an hour and five, and by the other in an hour and ten, minutes. The

VOL. IV.

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water was extremely cold from the melting of the mountainsnows. About three weeks before, in April, we had made an attempt, but having ridden all the way from the Troad the same morning, and the water being of an icy chilness, we found it necessary to postpone the completion till the frigate anchored below the castles, when we swam the straits, as just stated; entering a considerable way above the European, and landing below the Asiatic, fort. Chevalier says that a young Jew swam the same distance for his mistress ; and Oliver mentions its having been done by a Neapolitan; but our consul, Tarragona, remembered neither of these circumstances, and tried to dissuade us from the attempt. A number of the Salsette's crew were known to have accomplished a greater distance; and the only thing that surprised me was, that, as doubts had been entertained of, the truth of Leander's story, no traveller had ever endeavoured to ascertain its practicability.

Note 2, page 39.

zum , oós ayam. Zoë mou, sas agapo, or Zün , cás ayam, a Romaic expression of tenderness: if I translate it I shall affront the gentlemen, as it may seem that I supposed they could not; and if I do. not I may affront the ladies. For fear of any misconstruc tion on the part of the latter I shall do so, begging pardon of the learned. It means, "My life, I love you!" which sounds very prettily in all languages, and is as much in fashion in

Greece at this day as, Juvenal tells us, the two first words were amongst the Roman ladies, whose erotic expressions were all Hellenized.

Note 3, page 40, line 9.

By all the token-flowers that tell. In the East (where ladies are not taught to write, lest they should scribble assignations) flowers, cinders, pebbles, &c. convey the sentiments of the parties by that universal deputy of Mercury-an old woman. A cinder says, “I burn for thee;" a bunch of flowers tied with hair, “ Take me and fly;" but a pebble declares-what nothing else can.

Note 4, page 41, line 3.

Though I fly to Istambol. Constantinople.

Note 5, page 43, line 11.

And the seven-hilled city seeking. Constantinople. « Επταλοφος.”

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