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is the seat of government, and the chief central town in the passage from Constantinople to Bagdad.
Chapter X. Journey from Mardin to Diarbekr.—This journey is considered particularly dangerous—the robberies are constant, and the inhabitants by the way notorious thieves. In the character of guide and protector, Mr. Buckingham hired, as his companion, a man named Hassein, one of the most notorious robbers among the koord horse
Hassein's habitation was on the road-here they alighted at sun-set, and Mr. Buckingham was taken to visit his chief. In the true spirit of the country, says Mr. Buckingham, the aga first exacted an arbitrary contribution, as a tribute to his local authority, and then entertained me with the liberality of a friend of long standing. By sun-set next day the travellers saw the Tigris—the next morning the travellers cross the river, and arrive at Diarbekr.
The aspect of Diarbekr, at this first view, is that of a walled and fortified city, seated on a commanding eminence, appearing to be strongly defended by its position as well as its works without, and splendid, and wearing an air of great stateliness and opulence, in its mosques and towers within. The country amid which it is seated, is every where fertile and productive. Lofty mountains in the distance, while looking eastwards toward Koordisian, give an outline of great grandeur; in that direction, gardens and bridges, and pleasant summer-houses, seen nearer at land, add softer beauties to the scene ; while the passage of the Tigris, at the foot of the hill on which the town is seated, offers a combination of picturesque beauty, agricultural wealth, domestic convenience, and rural enjoyment.
After passing the Tigris a second time, we went up a steep road on the side of the hill, having gardens below us on our right, and extensive cemeteries, in more abrupt valleys, on our left, till we approached the gate called, by the Turks, Mardin haupusee, and by the Arabs, Bab el Mardin, from its being the gate leading to and from that town.
Chapters XI. and XII. contain a description of Diarbekr and a the journey back to Mardin, Dara, and Nisibis.—Diarbekr is a very considerable town and the population is estimated at fifty thousand at least. There are upwards of twenty baths in the town, and about fifteen khans or caravanserais.
The Khan Hassan Paslıa is particularly fine, and superior to any of those at Orfah. In its lower court, the corn-market is usually held. Its magazines, within the piazza, which runs around this, are generally filled with goods. In the upper galleries are carried on several trades and manufactures. The rooms around form the lodgings of the travellers who halt here; and above all is an upper story, with apartments for the harems or families of t' se who may sojourn here, with kitchens, fire-places, and other domestic conveniences.
Diarbekr seems to be in the enjoyment of considerable wealth and some little commerce.
The bazars are not so regularly laid out, or so well covered in, as in the large towns of Turkey generally. They are narrow, often crooked, and mostly roofed over with wood. They are, however, well supplied with goods of all descriptions that are in request here, and during the regular hours of business, are thronged with people. The manufactures of the town are chiefly silk and cotton stuffs, similar to those made at Damascus ; printed muslin shawls and handkerchiefs, morocco leather in skins of all colours, smith's work in hardware, and pipes for smoking made of the jasmin branch, covered with muslin and embroidered with gold and silver thread. There are thought to be no less than fifteen hundred looms employed in weaving of stuffs ; about five hundred printers of cotton, who perform their labours in the Khan Hassan Pasha, after the same manner as before described at Orfah; three hundred manufacturers of leather in the skin, besides those who work it into shoes, sadlery, and other branches of its consumption ; a hundred smiths; and a hundred and fifty makers of ornamented pipe-stems only, besides those who make the clay balls, amber mouth-pieces, &c. The cloths consumed here are obtained from Europe, through Aleppo, as well as most of the glass ware, which is German ; and fine muslins, Cashmere-shawls, spices, and drugs, come to them from India, through Bagdad, but most of the articles of domestic necessity can be procured in the place from its own resources, as every species of fruit and provisions are abundant and cheap, and the common manufactures of the town are sufficient to supply the wants of the great mass of the population.
The present governor of the Pashalick and city of Diarbekr, whose name is Kullendar Pasha, has the dignity of three tails, and is therefore immediately dependent on the Sublime Porte only, without acknowledging any intermediate chief. His force within the city is said to consist of about a thousand soldiers, of whom more than half are Turkish cavalry, and the remainder Turkish and Albanian foot. In the remote part of his territory, however, there are always petty chiefs, both among the Turks and the Koords, who, in case of need, do him military service with their followers, on condition of certain privileges and exceptions granted them in return. Even among the people here, in the heart of the Turkish empire, where despotism is so familiar to all, the government of Kullendar Pasha is thought to be severe ; though, judging from external appearances, there are few towns in which there seem to be more of personal liberty, competence, and comfort among all classes of people.
Mr. Buckingham was disappointed in finding here any government messenger, and determined upon returning. His guide, however, had been seized for a debt; Mr. B. himself and his horse were likewise detained on the complaint of his guide's creditor, and it was withi difficulty that he got out of the town. He set off on his dangerous journey without a guide, and appears to have galloped away until his journey was ended by his arrival at Mardin. Here he found that the caravan had departed. In his endeavours to overtake it, Mr. B. is himself overtaken by two Tatars, on their way from Constantinople to Bagdad.
At Nisibeen Mr. Buckingham and his companions found the car:van employed as usual in resisting the exorbitant demands of a chief in extorting tribute, and in paying some mitigated sum.
Nisibis was anciently one of the most important places in Mesopotamia; it is now fallen into great decline, it contains scarcely more than three hundred families of Arabs and Koords; in 1173 it contained ‘no less than a thousand Jews-now there are none.
Chapter XIII. describes the journey from Nisibeen across the plain of Sinjar. No sooner 'had the caravan encamped at the end of the first day's journey, than a body of fifty horsemen,“ all mounted on beautiful animals, and armed with long lances," poured down upon it. “ There were among this party two little boys, not more than ten years old, who rode with as much firmness and ease, a ld wielded their lances, and discharged their pistols with as much dexterity as any of the rest, and had, if possible, more boldness in their behaviour to strangers." These were followers of the most powerful chief between Orfah and Mousul, who is said to have under his orders twenty thousand horse. They did not leave the encampment till they received 1251. in coin, and had pilfered every thing to which they took a fancy. Over the remaining part of the plain the caravan adopted the expedient of hiring an escort from the sheikh of a tribe near the place of their encampment. The guards kept the members of the caravan awake all night by their incessant shouts; sometimes their alarm was well founded, and nothing but a general muster and display of their force kept off the assailants.
Chapter XIV. carries the traveller from the plain of Sinjar, by Romoila to Mousul—During this journey the caravan was afflicted with a dreadful drought. Its arrival at water gives rise to a most April, 1827.
animated scene, which is very well described, both by Mr. Buckingham and by the artist who has drawn the spirited vignette which heads the chapter.
It was near midnight when we reached a marshy ground, in which a clear stream was flowing along, through beds of tall and thick rushes, but so hidden by these, that the noise of its flow was heard luug before the stream itself could be seen. From the length of the march, and the exhausting heat of the atmosphere, even at nigbt, the horses were exceedingly thirsty. Their impatient restlessness, evinced by their tramping, neighing, and eager impatience to rush all to one particular point, gave us, indeed, the first indications of our approach to water, which was perceptible to their stronger scent long before it was even heard by us. On reaching the brink of this stream, for which purpose we had been forcibly turned aside, by the ungovernable fury of the animals, to the southward of our route, the banks were found to be so high above the surface of the water, that the horses could not reach it to drink. Some, more impa. tient than the rest, plunged themselves and their riders at once into the current, and, after being led swimming to a less elevated part of the bank, over which they could mount, were extricated with considerable difficulty; while two of the horses of the caravan, who were more heavily laden than the others, by carrying the baggage as well as the persons of their riders, were drowned. The stream was narrow, but deep, and had a soft muddy bottom, in which another of the horses became so fastly stuck, dat he was suffocated in a few minutes. The camels marched patiently along the edge of the bank, as well as those persons of the caravan who were provided with skins and other vessels containing small supplies of water; but the horses could not, by all the power of their riders, be kept from the stream, any more than the crowd of thirsty pilgrims, who, many of them having no small vessels to dip up the water from the brook, followed the example of the impatient borses, and plunged at once into the current. For myself, I experienced more difficulty than I can well describe, in keeping my own horse from breaking down the loose earth of the bank on which he stood, and plunging in with the others; it being as much as all my strength of arm could accomplish to keep him back from the brink, while he tramped, and snorted, and neighed, and reared himself erect on bis hinder legs, to express the intensity of his suffering from thirst. An Indian fakir, who was of the hadjee's party, being near me at this moment of my difficulty, and when I was deliberating in my mind whether I should not risk less in th:owing myself off my horse and letting him follow the bent of bis desires, as I began to despair of mastering him much longer, took from me my tin drinking cup, which was a kind of circular and shallow basin, capable of holding only about a pint ; this having two small holes in the sides for the purpose of slinging it over the shoulder on the march, longer pieces of cord were fastened to the short ones before affixed to it, and having now dismounted, by letting go the bridle, and sliding back over the baunches of the horse while he was in one of his erect positions from rearing, we succeeded in coaxing him into a momentary tranquillity by the caresses and tender expressions which all Arab horses understand so well; and with this shallow bason, thus slung in cords, we drew up from the stream as much as the vesse-I would hold, and in as quick succession as practicable. But even when full, the cup would hardly contain sufficient to moisten the horse's mouth; and as, at some times, it came up only half full, and at others was entirely emptied by the impatience of the horse knocking it out of the giver's hand, we let it down and drew it up, I am certain, more than a hundred times, till our arms were tired; and even then we had but barely satisfied our own thirst, and done nothing, comparatively, to allay that of the poor animal, whose sufferings, in common with nearly all the others of the caravan, were really painful to witness. This scene, which, amidst the obscurity of the night, the cries of the animals, the shouting and quarrelling of the people, and the indistinct and perhaps exaggerated apprehensions of danger, from a totally unexpected cause, had assumed an almost awful character, lasted for upwards of an hour; and so intense was the first impulse of self-preservation, to allay the burning rage of thirst, that, during all this time, the Yeziedis were entirely forgotten, and as absent from our thoughts as if they had never once been even heard of.
At length, on the 5th July, Mir. Buckingham arrived at Mousul, which may be considered the end of his dangers, if not of his toils. He was received with great honour, as an English traveller, by the pacha, who appointed two of his silver-sticks to show him the town.
Chapter XV. is a description of Mousul.----It is a considerable place,
and possesses baths, bazaars, and coffee-houses, the great public buildings of the east, in great number and splendour. It is sitpposed, by Gibbon, to have been the western suburb of Ninus, the city which succeeded Nineveli. The ruins of Nineveh lie along the eastern and opposite bank of the Tigris. The present population of Mousul is about one hundred thousand.
Mr. Buckingham had pushed on to the town before the arrival of a the caravan.
When it entered Mousul, its final destination, he was witness of the demonstrations of affection and respect with which his old friend, the hadjee, was received by his towns' and kinsmen.
In the evening, the caravan which I accompanied from Aleppo, made its entry into Nousul, and so great was the consideration enjoyed bere by the Hadjee Abd-el-Rakhman, that a crowd of his friends and dependants went out beyond the walls of the city to greet his arrival, and to bring him into his own house, amid their acclamations of welcome. As we met these on our return from an excursion round the town, I dispensed with the further attendance of the pasha's cawasses, and joined the party who were going to the Hadjee's house.
On our reaching this, we were all received with great respect by the servants and slaves in waiting ; but the Hadjee and his nephew were almost worshipped by them; having their knees embraced, and the hems of iheir garments kissed by the crowds who pressed around them as they entered the court of their dwelling.
The house itself, which was now quite new, was esteemed to be inferior to none in the city, excepting the residence of the Pasha, and, indeed, its interior decorations were as costly as those of any private abode that I had seen in the East, excepting only those of the rich Jews of Damascus. This house had been begun by the Hadjee just before his setting out on his pilgrimage, and, during the two years of his absence, it kad been completed by the confidential slave or chief steward of his household. While the host and his nephew retired to receive the welcome of the females of the family, all the strangers were shewn over the dwelling, and every thing was found to be in the most perfect order for the lord's reception. The Hadjee and his nephew soon returned to us, both dressed in garments of white, all perfectly new, and prepared during their absence, to clothe them on the day of their return.
Chapter XVI. is entitled, Visit to the Ruins of Nineveh, and Journey from Mousul to the river Lycus. The Tigris is crossed by a bridge of boats.
Descending through the town to the river, we crossed it, over a bridge of boats, which was just one hundred and fifty horse paces in length. The boats were badly constructed, and not being fastened together in the most secure manner, the whole bridge was set in motion by the least agitation of the water. They were moored head and stern by iron chains, and were sharp at each end. The rate of the current in mid-channel seemed at present not to exceed two miles an hour; but it was said by all, that this was the slowest rate at which it ran, and that it sometimes possessed three times its present rapidity. The water was nowhere deeper than from three to four fathoms, and it was of a yellow muddy colour throughout; though it soon became clear by being suffered to rest, and was at all seasons fine and sweet to the taste.
The remains of Nineveh, the “ exceeding great city of three days' journey” in length, seem to be nothing more than a few mounds and scattered ruins, extending along the banks of the river.
Nineveh is said to have been surrounded by walls that were a hundred feet in height, and of a sufficient breadth for three chariots to pass along it together abreast, as well as to have been defended by fifteen hundred towers along these walls, which were each of them two hundred feet high. If the walls of Babylon, however, which were comparatively of so much more modern erection, are thought to have left no trace remaining, those of Nineveh may well have totally disappeared.
From the height on which we stood, extending our view to a considerable distance in every direction, we could not certainly perceive any marked delineation of one great outline ; but mounds and smaller heaps of ruins were scattered widely over the plain, sufficient to prove that the site of the original city occupied a vast extent, notwithstanding that some of the latest visitors to this place have thought that the remains were confined to the few mounds of the centre only.
From Mousul Mr. Buckingham rode post with the Tatars. They crossed the celebrated plain where the fatal battle of Gaugamela was fought, between Alexander and Darius. The Lycus was crossed on rafts, sustained in the water by inflated skins.—[See Xenophon Anab. b. i. p. 60, in Spelman.]
Chapter XVII, describes the course from Ain Koura, by the ancient Arbela, to Kerkook. The couriers whom Mr. Buckingham accome panied, are noisy riotous people, who give themselves great airs, and treat the poor people who are compelled by the government order to serve them, with the utmost insolence, and frequently violence. Thiş is a description of the behaviour of one of Mr. Buckingham's companions at Ain Koura :
While fresh horses were saddling, the Tartars and myself sat down to a breakfast of roasted fowls, cream, honey, and sweatmeats; while a man stood at each of our elbows with a bottle of strong arrack, and a cup to supply us at our pleasure. It is difficult to describe low much these villagers, who were all Syrian Christians, seemed to stand in awe of the Turkislı letter-carriers, on whom they waited. There stood around us not less than forty persons, some bearing full and others empty dishes ; some having water-pots and basons ready for washing-one holding the soap and another the towel-the humbler ones among them being content to have the boots of the riders ready for then when they rose from the carpet ; and all, indeed, seeming anxious to make themselves in some way or other subservient to the pleasure of these Jordly tyrants.
Large doses of arrack were swallowed, both by Jonas and Ali, though the former seemed to pride himself on his pre-eminence in this, as well as in all other respects; and, even at this early liour of the morning, he emptied two fuil bottles for his share. I was myself obliged to drink, almost to intoxication, though a much less quantity than that swallowed by them would have disabled me from proceeding ; but the haughty Turk honoured me with his permission to drink in his presence, and this was granted as a favour, which it would have been an affront of the highest kind to refuse.
We had no sooner descended into the court, than the effects of these exhilarating draughts began to manifest themselves pretty unequivocally. Jonas found fault with the horse that had been saddled for him, and insisted on its being the worst of the stud, though it was an enviably fine creature, and worth any three of the others put together. Ali, not to be behind his comrade, had all the baggage-horses loaded afresh, and changed his own saddle to two or three different horses in succession, until be condemned them all as the worst group of animals that God had ever assembled together since the brute creation were first named by Adam.
The poor Syrians bore tliese vexations with so much patience, that they might be said literally to bave fulfilled the injunction, “ If man smite thee on one cheek, turn to him the other also.” The very want of some resistance to this treatment was, however, a cause of fresh vexation to the Tartars; since they inferred from it, that their tyranny had not been felt as an annoyance; so that, handling their whips, one of them exclaimed, “ What! you will not be angry, then. By God, but we will make ye so!” and laid about him with the fury of a maniac. Ali contented himself with the use of the whip only, saying, that as they were bullocks, and mules, and asses, and brute beasts, this was the only punishment fit for them; but Jonas, having received some indignity from a young lad, who spit in his face, and ran off faster than the other could pursue him, drew his yatagan, and chased those near him with this naked dagger in his hand, till they flew in every direction; and he, at last, in the rage of disappointment, threw it with all his force arnidst a group of three or four who were near him, and shivered its ivory handle by the fall into twenty pieces. The only regret that lie expressed was, that the blade had not buried itself in some of their hearts, instead of the weapon thus falling uselessly on the ground. After such conduct, none of the people could be prevailed on to approach us, though at least a hundred villagers stood aloof gazing at these two enraged Turks, and flying at the least symptom of pursuit. We were, therefore, obliged to finish the saddling of our own horses, and