« AnteriorContinuar »
siasm for meeting human need may have a technical skill in judging these things which is of high worth. But after all, everything there seen has its deepest significance when viewed as expressing life and longing, the needs and resources of men akin to ourselves by ties that unite us across oceans and centuries. The teeming life found there now is profoundly human, and its sordid, pathetic calmness of decay only interprets and deepens the wonder of that vast array of ancient achievement to which the remains there found bear witness.
Renan, man of letters and critic that he was, perceived this when he journeyed through Mediterranean countries. "Would you believe it ?” he writes, “I am completely changed. I am no longer French; I am no longer critic; I am unworthy of the rôle; I have no longer any opinions; I know not what to say about all this."
Then his genius flames out in a splendid passage, showing that all there seen is a part of the life of the people, an expression of deepest human interests “interests which are as real as any other of the needs of nature.
And Thackeray closes an account of a scene observed by him amid Mediterranean people with these words: “The Maker has linked together the whole race of man with the chain of love. I like to think that there is no man but has had kindly feelings for some other, and he for his neighbor, until we bind together the whole family of Adam.”
I believe that the reader of this book will find in it the strong human feeling, the sense of the needs of men and of brotherhood wide as humanity. These will be the workman's marks of the man who greeted me in the
with his arms full of mail.”
WILLIAM ALLEN KNIGHT.
BRIGHTON PARSONAGE, Boston, Mass.,
September 26, 1910.
P R E F A C E
HE Call of the Orient once heard is never forTHE
gotten; once heeded, it is ever insistent for another and yet another response. To satisfy this cry from the East a world-trip was undertaken some years ago. Two months of the twelve were spent in the countries bordering upon the Mediterranean, mostly in Egypt and the Holy Land. It was a personally conducted party, but which of the two members was the conductor has never been satisfactorily settled : each insists that the other was. One regret was ever present: it seemed supremely selfish to see so many strange and interesting sights, to have so many unusual and delightful experiences, and to enjoy to the full every passing moment just for themselves alone. A decision, if not a vow, was registered that if ever again an occasion offered to visit the lands made forever sacred by the earthly presence of the Master of men, that privilege should be shared by as many friends as could be induced to go by their simple story of what they had seen and enjoyed.
Quite unexpectedly their day-dreams in Egypt and Palestine have been realized. The classic Mediterranean has been revisited and old acquaintances renewed and new friendships formed under circumstances of
special interest. For two months or more, in a party containing many clergymen, Bible teachers and students and educators, the study of the peoples bordering upon the Great Sea, with their histories, customs, religions and present-day achievements, was carried on in a methodical manner with the aid of approved scholars, the best literature available, and, what was best of all, it was done in the countries themselves. Surely the Chinese proverb has been verified: “One seeing is better than a thousand people telling you of it,” and the seeing was accomplished with the least possible fatigue! The memory of those happy weeks will never perish. And then, separating themselves from the larger party, three members traveled for weeks entirely at leisure. Cathedrals and libraries and museums yielded their best, and friends added charm to the saunterings of the travelers as, care free, they journeyed from city to city where fancy dictated or reason impelled, or halted in fascinating towns and suburbs in Southern Europe, and read and rested and dreamed of those who had lived and loved amid the historic surroundings so delightful and satisfying.
And now that the journey is ended how may one properly present the facts gained and the impressions received without making a new guide-book on the one hand, or, on the other, a diary of experiences, interesting chiefly to those who were his associates on the journey? How can one volume contain it all?
JOHN BANCROFT DEVINS.
The Last Stronghold of the Moors in Europe-Fascination of
the Alhambra-Splendid in Its Ruins-Seville and Cadiz.
CHAPTER V. ALGIERS AND MALTA...
An Arab Proverb to Describe a City-Algerians Through
American Eyes-England's Eye in the Mediterranean Sea-St.
CHAPTER VI. GREECE IN SONG AND STORY.....
History and Poetry Attest Noble Deeds Famous Ruins in
Athens An Interview with King George Excavations at
CHAPTER VII. CONSTANTINOPLE OLD AND NEW....... 85
The City on the Bosphorus Founded by the Greeks—The Seat
of Moslem Rule-The Bible House, and the Mosque of St. Sophia.
CHAPTER VIII. UNDER THE NEW CONSTITUTION.. 95
The Young Turks in Control-Liberty Undergoing a Severe
Test - America's Influence in the Empire-A Chat with an Am-