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tinople by Mahomet II. was not the result of the mere ambi, tion of extending his empire, or even, as the Christian historians of the siege would have us believe, of a merciless zeal for the religion of the Prophet. The inconsiderable tribe who in a few years had emerged from an obscure district on the banks of the Oxus, and extended their empire from the Dnieper to the cataracts of the Nile, were still insecure in their conquests from the threatened hostility of the European states, between whose powers a union for the support of their Christian brethren in the East had often been pro. jected. In the acquisition of Constantinople, Mahomet II. obtained at once a seat of empire, and an effectual barrier against the combined efforts of all the princes of Europe. The operation of the same motives which caused the capture of the city, preserved it, when acquired, from destruction. So congenial to the common tastes and character of mankind are those luxuries, which, under an endless variety of forms, always indicate and accompany the increase of wealth, that, in the few years which had elapsed from the origin of their power to the capture of the metropolis of the East, the Turks had wholly lost sight of the pursuits and habits of their nomade forefathers. With most of the tastes, and not a few of the more elegant arts of more opulent and long settled communities, they had become intimately acquainted ; and, after the first violence of the assault, anxiously exerted themselves to preserve, not only the more immediately serviceable abodes of the former inhabitants of Constantinople, but most, also, of the more splendid edifices which it owed to the opulence or piety of its monarchs. The mosques and minarets, con: secrated to the worship and religious services of the Mahomedan faith, were constructed from the magnificent piles which the former sovereigns of the Eastern empire had dedicated to the culture of a purer faith : the sumptuous baths which the emperors had accumulated, with an ostentatious but well-judged liberality, for the accommodation of their subjects, were studiously preserved and laboriously embellish, ed; and the Hippodrome, under its new appellation of Atmeidan, still continued to be devoted to the purposes of its original formation.
The present narrative commences with Dr. Clarke's residence at Constantinople. In confirmation of the accounts of all former travellers, he states, that the remains of many of the buildings, and much of the costume and general appearance of the ancient city, is still distinctly visible. On this subject the following passage is at once accurate and comprehensive.
“ After the imagination has been dazzled with pompous and glaring descriptions of palaces and baths, porticos and temples, groves, circusses and gardens, the plain matter of fact may prove that in the obscure and dirty lanes of Constantinople, its small and unglazed shops, the style of architecture observed in the dwellings, the long covered walks, now serving as bazars, the loose flowing habits with long sleeves, worn by the natives; even in the practice of concealing the features of the women, and, above all, in the remarkable ceremonies and observances of the public baths; we behold those customs and appearances which characterized the cities of the Greeks. Such, at least, as far as inanimate objects are concerned, is the picture presented by the interesting ruins of Hercu. laneum, Pompeii, and Stabiæ.” P. 3.
In the conduct of a topic already so amply discussed as that of the antiquities and other memorabilia of this remarkable city,“ on which," says Dr. Clarke, “the volumes which have been written would alone be sufficient to constitute a library,” our author has, we think, entitled himself to great praise, both for what he has done, and for what he has omitted to do. He has told much that is at once both curious and original, and has, with a few exceptions, passed over every thing which former travellers have communicated. In excepting from this general commendation, the very singular account of Dr. Clarke's adventures in the interior of the seraglio, we almost feel ourselves guilty of some ingratitude. A man who, for the amusement of his readers, has engaged in an exploit of such imminent hazard as that of penetrating into the Charem of the Grand Sultan, may, perhaps, think himself hardly used, in having to encounter reproaches from those for whose entertainment he has risked his existence. Thinking, however, very highly of the value of the life of such a man as Dr. Clarke, and being, we fear, more indifferent than we ought to be, as to the accommodations and domestic recreations of the Sultan, we confess the knowledge furnished on these points seem to us very much too dearly purchased. The voluptuous and fanciful descriptions which other writers had given of these scenes of royal repose, and the mysterious secrecy in which they had been concealed from human observation, had excited a kind of morbid curiosity respecting them. In the plain and consistent account of Dr. Clarke, our readers will find some disappointment, perhaps, and some amusement, but nothing very marvellous or surprising -nothing very incredible or very enviable. The Sultan appears to live much as it might have been suspected that a Sultan would-in great splendour and great meanness-in a crowd of eunuchs, bostanghis, and women--among delicious
baths, and still more delicious summer-houses-surrounded with ill-fashioned gardens, and ill-imagined presents from the potentaies of Europe. We have not room to transcribe, or even to give an intelligible abridgment of the minute description of the seraglio, with which many pages of this volume are occupied.*
During his residence in Constantinople, the procession of the Grand Seignior at the opening of the Bairain-the most splendid pageant exhibited to the inhabitants of that city-was conducted with its customary magnificence. One part of this civic pomp, for its singularity, deserves to be recorded. A large collection of ancient armour, which Dr. Clarke, we think with great reason, supposes to form part
and military engines of the Greek emperors, was borne on sumpter mules before the Grand Seignior, and appeared to form no inconsiderable part of the grandeur of the show.
The bazar, or market for manuscripts, is one of the most remarkable literary curiosities which the world has at this day to exhibit; and strange to say, it is also one of the most neglected.
Dr. Clarke, upon unquestionable data, calculates that no less than 50,000 manuscripts, Arabic, Persian, and Turkish, are daily exposed to sale in the public streets of Constantinople. It must not, however, be supposed that the whole, or even the greater part of these manuscripts, are single copies. But of such an immense collection the knowledge, hitherto attained must of necessity be most imperfect. A more diligent scrutiny might discover much that would amply repay the labour of the search.
The monstrous superstitions, or rather the incredible buffooneries, too miserable to be dignified with the name even of superstition, which are practised as religious duties by the dervishes of Scutari, have been often amply described, and hy no one we think more fully or accurately than that by the citizen Olivier--a lively and vituperative republican, who, in the year 1794-5, traversed the greatest part of the Ottoman empire, and published on his return a very copious account of his observations. The narrative of Dr. C. is given with his characteristic cleárness, and, though often told, the story deserves to be once more repeated.
“ As we entered the mosque, we observed twelve or fourteen der. vishes walking slowly round, before a superior, in a small space, surrounded with rails, beneath the dome of the building." gallery over the entrance were stationed two or three performers on the tambourine and Turkish pipes. Presently the dervishes,
* For Dr. Clarke's description of the Seraglio, see our number for January last. Vol. I. New Series.
crossing their arms over their breasts, and with each of their hands grasping their shoulders, began obeisance to the superior, who stood with his back against the wall, facing the door of the mosque. Then each in succession, as he passed the superior, having finished his bow, began to turn round; first slowly, but afterwards with such velocity, that, his long garments flying out in the rotatory motion, the whole party appeared spinning like so many umbrellas upon their handles. As they began, their hands were disengaged from their shoulders and raised gradually above their heads. At length, as the velocity of the whirl increased, they were all seen with their arms extended horizontally, and their eyes closed, turning with inconceivable rapidity. The music, accompanied by voices, served to animate them, while a steady old fellow, in a green pelisse, continued to walk among them, with a fixed countenance, and expressing as much care and watchfulness, as if his life would expire with the slightest failure in the ceremony." “ The elder of these dervishes appeared to me to perform the task with so little labour or exertion, that although their bodies were in violent agitation, their countenances resembled those of persons in an easy sleep. The younger part of the dancers moved with no less velocity than the others, but it seemed in them a less mechanical operation. This extraordinary exercise continued for the space of fifteen minutes; a length of time it might be supposed sufficient to exhaust life itself during such an exertion, and our eyes began to ache with the sight of so many objects all turning one way. Suddenly, on a signal given by the directors of the dance, unobserved by the spectators, the dervishes all stopped at the same instant, like the wheels of a machine, and, what is more extraordinary, all in one circle, with their faces invariably towards the centre, crossing their arms on their breasts, and grasping their shoulders as before, bowing together at the same instant with the utmost regularity almost to the ground. We regarded them with astonishment, not one of them being in the slightest degree out of breath, heated, or having his countenance at all changed. After this, they began to walk as at first, each following the other, within the railing, and passing the superior as before. As soon as their obeisance had been made, they began to turn again. This second exhibition lasted as long as the first, and was similarly concluded. They then began to turn for the third time, and as the dance lengthened, the music grew louder and more animating: Perspiration became evident on the features of the deryishes
the extended garments of some among them began to droop, and little accidents occurred, such as their striking against each other; they nevertheless persevered, until large drops of sweat falling from their bodies on the floor, such a degree of friction was thereby produced, that the noise of their feet rubbing the floor was heard by the spectators. Upon this the third and last signal was made for them to halt, and the dance ended." Pp. 38–40.
On the first of March Dr. Clarke finally quitted Constantinople. We will not so abuse the patience of our readers, as
to occupy any part of the space we are able to allot to the re, view of the volume before us, with the old dispute about the site of the ancient Ilium. We must for the present, therefore, content ourselves with saying, that to so much of the creed of Jacob Bryant as places the city of Priam very much to the south of the strait now called the Dardanelles, we do most conscientiously subscribe. At the same time they who take much delight in such inquiries, will do well to consult Dr. Clarke's book. And if they should chance to smile at the confidence with which he arranges, in their several stations, the tombs of Æneas, Ajax, and Æsyetes, they will yet hardly fail to be edified by the variety of classical knowledge with which he illustrates his own peculiar theory, and the very neat and accurate survey of the district of Troas which he has produced in support of it.
From the warm springs of Bonarbashy, to which Dr. Clarke is disposed to assign the honour of being the Δοιαι πηγαι ! mentioned Il. X. 148. our author proceeded to the sources of the Mender. The cities of Æne, (the Aiveía of Strabo,) Turkmanlé, and Beyramitch, are all, especially the first, places remarkable for their extent, their beauty, and their antiquities. Beyramitch is the capital of Troas. The land surrounding it a fertile plain, embosomed in lofty mountains—is the property of the Pacha of the Dardanelles, whose immense wealth has, in pursuance of the enlightened policy of the Porte, been almost exhausted by endless exactions. It is to the avidity of this Pacha, however, in pursuit of materials for building, that the artists of this country are indebted for the exquisite fragment of a female figure, given by him to Dr. Clarke, and now deposited in the public library of the University of Cambridge. After a careful inspection of the antiquities of Beyramitch, and having, at the imminent peril of a broken neck, enjoyed the glorious scenery visible from the summit of Mount Gargarus, our author at last reached the sources of the Mender, or, as he usually writes, the Scamander. With the natural beauties of this spot, heightened no doubt by classical association, Dr. Clarke appears to have been in no ordinary degree delighted.
“Our ascent,” says he, “as we drew near to the source of the river, became steep and stony. Lofty summits towered above us, in the greatest style of Alpine grandeur, the torrent, in its rugged bed below, all the while foaming upon our left. Presently we entered one of the sublimest natural amphitheatres the eye ever bee held, and here the guides desired us to alight. The noise of water silenced every other sound. These craggy rocks rose perpendicu. larly to an immense height, whose sides and fissures, to the very clouds, concealing their tops, were covered with pines; growing