Excursions to Cairo Jerusalem Damascus Balbec from the U.S.S Delaware during Her Recent Cruise With an Attempt to Discriminate between Truth and Error in Regard to the Sacred Places of the Holy City

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Excursions to Cairo Jerusalem Damascus Balbec from the U.S.S Delaware during Her Recent Cruise With an Attempt to Discriminate between Truth and Error in Regard to the Sacred Places of the Holy City

Excursions to Cairo Jerusalem Damascus Balbec from the U.S.S Delaware during Her Recent Cruise With an Attempt to Discriminate between Truth and Error in Regard to the Sacred Places of the Holy City

ISBN
d631e666-bcdc-35d9-890c-92a8943ba665
“Land O!” was cried from our mast-head on the morning of the 13th of July; and at the end of an hour, a dim yellow line, resting on the southern horizon, might be discovered from our elevated decks. When another hour had expired, a high misty object, that had drawn our attention, had taken distinctness of outline, and was known to be Pompey’s Pillar. By this time also the narrow strip of sand forming the coast had begun to be ruffled, and soon after the city of Alexandria, its domes, minarets, palaces, and shipping, came into view. Notwithstanding the evidence of life and activity that had now presented itself, the scene was a melancholy one. Far off on either side stretched the low, sandy coast, its uniform outline unbroken except by a few insignificant ruins; not a tree or shrub, not a speck of verdure, was to be anywhere seen; while back from the coast the atmosphere seemed to be on fire; a deep red glare, covering all the land, and ascending far up towards the zenith. This was our first impression with regard to Egypt, and the second was by no means a more favorable one. Our ship was anchored about three miles from the shore, and the schooner Shark, our consort on this occasion, was directed to proceed into the harbor, with an invitation to the U. S. consul, Mr. J. Gliddon, to come on board. When he arrived, he informed us that two cases of what seemed to be the plague had appeared eight days previously in the Greek convent, and had excited some alarm: he added, however, that the building had been put in strict quarantine, and as the disease had extended no further, and the symptoms were not of a decided character, their fears had subsided, and that they were in hopes of enjoying their usual health. Their expectations were encouraged by the fact that the country had for many years been exempted from this dreadful disease. Mohammed Ali was at this time in Syria, whither he had been called to assist in putting down a rebellion, which had suddenly burst out there. Mr. Gliddon strongly urged the Commodore to await his return; and informed us, that in the mean time we could visit Cairo and the Pyramids with perfect safety, as that city and the intermediate country were free from sickness, and our route would not carry us through Alexandria or expose us to contact with its inhabitants. It was with the most sincere pleasure that we learned that Commodore Patterson had decided in favor of this excursion. Dim land of embalmed and faded greatness, that, from the searments of the tomb, dost murmur to us in solemn and mystic language, we should see thee then! we should stand on the banks of the Nile, where even Nature herself is shrouded in unusual obscurity: we should look down from the summits of the Pyramids, those monuments on which all ages have gazed with wonder, and where they have speculated in vain. I had myself just been living in a squatter’s cabin in Indiana, and anticipated with keen relish the strong contrast that would here be presented. I had come from witnessing the first elements of society forming into order, to see the monuments of a people ancient even in the most ancient times; from watching the conflicts of separate individual interests, to behold the “vast expanse of ages and nations;” from wandering amid the primeval solitudes of nature, to wander amid the solitudes of deserted cities; and from witnessing the first efforts for human greatness to contemplate its end.
  • Categoría BISAC FIC000000
  • Formato Epub 2
  • Idioma Inglés
  • Año 2021
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