The Lands of the Saracen eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 452 pages of information about The Lands of the Saracen.
and are flanked to the east and west by headlands, or abutments, the slopes of which are longer and more gradual, as if to strengthen the great structure.  Piled upon the four pyramids are others nearly as large, above whose green pinnacles appear still other and higher ones, bare and bleak, and clustering thickly together, to uphold the great central dome of snow.  Between the bases of the lowest, the streams which drain the gorges of the mountain issue forth, cutting their way through the foundation terrace, and widening their beds downwards to the plain, like the throats of bugles, where, in winter rains, they pour forth the hoarse, grand monotone of their Olympian music.  These broad beds are now dry and stony tracts, dotted all over with clumps of dwarfed sycamores and threaded by the summer streams, shrunken in bulk, but still swift, cold, and clear as ever.

We reached the city before night, and Francois is glad to find his presentiment fulfilled.  We have safely passed through the untravelled heart of Asia Minor, and are now almost in sight of Europe.  The camp-fire is extinguished; the tent is furled.  We are no longer happy nomads, masquerading in Moslem garb.  We shall soon become prosaic Christians, and meekly hold out our wrists for the handcuffs of Civilization.  Ah, prate as we will of the progress of the race, we are but forging additional fetters, unless we preserve that healthy physical development, those pure pleasures of mere animal existence, which are now only to be found among our semi-barbaric brethren.  Our progress is nervous, when it should be muscular.

Chapter XXV.

Brousa and the Sea of Marmora.

The City of Brousa—­Return to Civilization—­Storm—­The Kalputcha Hammam—­A Hot Bath—­A Foretaste of Paradise—­The Streets and Bazaars of Brousa—­The Mosque—­The Tombs of the Ottoman Sultans—­Disappearance of the Katurgees—­We start for Moudania—­The Sea of Marmora—­Moudania—­Passport Difficulties—­A Greek Caique—­Breakfast with the Fishermen—­A Torrid Voyage—­The Princes’ Islands—­Prinkipo—­Distant View of Constantinople—­We enter the Golden Horn.

  “And we glode fast o’er a pellucid plain
  Of waters, azure with the noontide ray. 
  Ethereal mountains shone around—­a fane
  Stood in the midst, beyond green isles which lay
  On the blue, sunny deep, resplendent far away.”


Constantinople, Monday, July 12, 1852.

Before entering Brousa, we passed the whole length of the town, which is built on the side of Olympus, and on three bluffs or spurs which project from it.  The situation is more picturesque than that of Damascus, and from the remarkable number of its white domes and minarets, shooting upward from the groves of chestnut, walnut, and cypress-trees, the city is even more beautiful.  There are large mosques on all the most prominent points,

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The Lands of the Saracen from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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