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could not believe him, and set out to look for it myself; and although in my search I had already seen enough abundantly to repay me for all my dilliculties in getting there, I could not be content without finding this desired avenue.
“In front of the great temple, the pride and beauty of Petra, of which more hereafter, I saw a narrow opening in the rocks, exactly corresponding with my conception of the object for which I was seeking. A full stream of water was gushing through it, and filling up the whole mouth of the passage. Mounted on the shoulders of one of my Bedouins, I got him to carry me through the swollen stream at the mouth of the opening, and set me down on a dry place a little above, whence I began to pick my way, occasionally taking to the shoulders of my follower, and continued to advance more than a mile. I was beyond all peradventure in the great entrance I was seeking. There could not be two such, and I should have gone on lo the extreme end of the ravine, but my Bedouin suddenly refused me the further use of his shoulders. He had been some time objecting and begging me to return, and now positively refused to go any further; and, in fact, turned about himself. I was anxious to proceed, but I did not like wading up to my knees in the water, nor did I feel very resolute to go where I might expose myself to danger, as he seemed to intimate. While I was hesitating, another of my men came running up the ravine, and shortly after him Paul and the shiek, breathless with haste, and crying in low gutturals, 'El Arab! El Arab!'— The Arabs! the Arabs! This was enough for me. I had heard so much of El Arab that I had become nervous. It was like the cry of Delilah in the ears of the sleeping Sampson, The Philistines be upon thee. At the other end of the ravine was an encampment of the El Alouins; and the shiek, having due regard to my communication about money matters, had shunned this entrance to avoid bringing upon me this horde of tribute-gatherers for a participation in the spoils. Without any disposition to explore farther, I turned towards the city; and it was now that I began to feel the powerful and indelible impression that must be produced on entering, through this mountainous passage, the excavated city of Petra.
“l'or about two miles it lies between high and precipitous ranges of rocks, from five hundred to a thousand feet in height, standing as if torn asunde by some great convulsion, and barely wide enough for two horsemen to pass abreast. A swelling stream rushes between them; the summits are wild and broken; in some places overhanging the opposite sides, casting the darkness of night upon the narrow defile; then receding and forming an opening above, through which a strong ray of light is thrown down, and illuminates with the blaze of day the frightful chasın below. Wild fig-trecs, oleanders, and ivy, were growing out of the rocky sides of the cliffs hundreds of feet above our heads; the eagle was screaming above us; all along were the open doors of tombs, forming the great necropolis of the city; and at the extreme end was a large open space, with a powerful body of light thrown down upon it, and exhibiting in one full view the façade of a beautiful temple, hewn out of the rock, with rows of Corinthian columns and ornaments, standing out fresh and clear as if but yesterday from the hands of the sculptor. Though coming direcily from the banks of the Nile, wb the preservation of the temples excites the admiration and astonishment of every traveller, we were roused and excited by the extraordinary beauty and excellent condition of the great temple of Petra. Even in coming upon it, as we did, at disadvantage, I remember that Paul, who was a passionate admirer of the arts, when he first obtained a glimpse
of it, involuntarily cried out, and moving on to the front with a vivacity I never saw him exhibit before or afterwards, clapped his hands, and shouted in ecstasy. To the last day of our being together, he was in the habit of referring to his extraordinary fit of enthusiasm when he first came upon that temple; and I can well imagine that, entering by this narrow defile, with the feelings roused by its extraordinary and romantic wildness and beauty, the first view of that superb façade must produce an effect which could never pass away. Even now that I have returned to the pursuits and thought-engrossing incidents of a life in the busiest city in the world, often in situations as widely different as light from darkness, I see before me the façade of that temple; neither the Coliseum at Rome, grand and interesting as it is, nor the ruins of the Acropolis at Athens, nor the Pyramids, nor the mighty temples of the Nile, are so often present to my memory.
“ The whole temple, its columns, ornaments, porticoes, and porches, are cut out from and form part of the solid rock; and this rock, at the foot of which the temple stands like a mere print, towers several hundred feet above, its face cut smooth to the very summit, and the top remaining wild and misshapen as nature made it. The whole area before the temple is perhaps an acre in extent, enclosed on all sides except at the narrow entrance, and an opening to the left of the temple, which leads into the area of the city by a pass through perpendicular rocks, five or six hundred feet in height." Vol. II. pp. 65–72.
An entertaining account of a visit to the tomb of Aaron upon Mount Hor, we are compelled to omit.
The approach to the Holy Land over the same road and through the very spot which the Israelites, so many centuries since, traversed, each one hallowed by some act of divine agency, and bearing the clearest testimony to the truth of the scriptural narrative, is replete with interest of the deepest and warmest kind. Mr. S. reached Palestine through Idumea ; though he was unable to visit the southern shore of the Dead Sea, the journey being, in his circumstances, altogether impracticable. Fie turned off, therefore, to the left, towards Hebron, and visited it and every other town of note in Palestine.
The places of Palestine being comparatively familiar to our readers, we shall not dwell upon this portion of the book. Upon but one concluding topic we shall say a word—the Dead Sea.
This mysterious lake has been thoroughly explored, so far as is known and believed, but by two Europeans--one an illiterate sailor; the other an enthusiastic traveller, an Irish gentleman, who died upon its shores after having made its fearful circuit. His story has died with him, and the world has lost what cannot be easily supplied. The ruins of Sodom and Gomorrah lie beneath the tainted waters of the “ Sea of Death," and the unfortunate Costigan is supposed to have dropped his line in the midst of their ocean-covered remains. Had but strength and means been his, what disclosures might VOL. XXI. —NO. 12.
not he have drawn from those awful depths! What proofs might not these terrible soundings have furnished !
Our author was but able to visit a small portion of the sea in question-it was sufficient, however, to impart ample authentication to the reports of previous writers. To his industry and research we are indebted for the preservation of the tale of the sailor we mentioned above, (the companion of the unfortunate Costigan,) which is the first and only account of a circuit of these dread waters having been made. We extract it, and, with it, conclude our notice of this very delightful book.
“ When the unhappy Costigan was found by the Arabs on the shore of the Dead Sea, the spirit of the enterprising Irishman was fast fleeting away. He lived two days after he was carried to the convent at Jerusalem, but he never once referred to his unhappy voyage. He had long been a traveller in the East, and long preparing for this voyage; had read every book that treated of the mysterious water, and was thoroughly prepared with all the knowledge necessary for exploring it to advantage. Unfortunately for the interests of science, he had always been in the habit of trusting greatly to his memory; and, after his death, the missionaries in Jerusalem found no regular diary or journal, but merely brief noles written on the margins of books, so irregular and confused that they could make nothing of them; and, either from indifference, or because they had no confidence in him, they allowed Costigan's servant to go without asking him any questions. I took some pains to trace out this man; and afterward, while lying at Bey root, suffering from a malady which abruptly put an end to my travels in the East, Paul hunted him out and brought him to me. He was a little, dried-up Maltese sailor; had rowed around that sea without knowing why, except that he was paid for it; and what he told me bore the stamp of truth, for he did not seem to think that he had done any thing extraordinary. He knew as little about it as any man could know who had been over the same water, and yet, after all, perhaps, he knew as much as any one else could learn. lle seemed, however, to have observed the coast and the soundings with the eye of a sailor, and I got him to make me a map, which has been engraved for this work, and on which I marked down the particulars as I received them froin his lips. The reader will perceive by it that they had completed the whole tour of the lake. They were eight days in accomplishing the task, sleeping every night on shore except once, when, afraid of some suspicious Arabs whom they saw on the mountains, they slept on board, beyond the reach of gunshot from the land. He told me that they had moved in a zigzag direction, crossing and recrossing the lake several times; that every day they sounded, frequently with a line of 175 brachia (about six feet each); that they found the bottom rocky and of very unequal depth, sometimes ranging thirty, forty, eighty, twenty brachia, all within a few boats’ lengths ;' that some
I would suggest whether this irregularity does not tend to show the fallacy of the opinion that the cities of the plain were destroyed by a volcanic eruption, and that the lake covers the crater of an extinct vol
I have seen the craters of Vesuvius, Solfaterra, Etna, and Monte Rosso, and all present the same form of a mountain excavated in the form of a cone, without any of the irregularities found in the bottom of
times the lead brought up sand, like that of the mountains on each side ; that they failed in finding bottom but once, and in that place there were large bubbles all around for thirty paces, rising probably from a spring ; that in one place they found on the bank a hot sulphur spring; that at the southern extremity Mr. Costigan looked for the River of Dogs, but did not find it; that in four different places they found ruins, and could clearly distinguish large hewn stones, which seem to have been used for buildings; and in one place they saw ruins which Mr. Costigan said were the ruins of Gomorrah. Now I have no doubt that Mr. Costigan talked with him as they went along, and told him what he told me; and that Mr. Costigan had persuaded himself that he did see the ruins of the guilty city; he may have been deceived and probably was; but it must have been the most intensely interesting illusion that ever any man had. But of the island, or what Paul and I had imagined to be such :-He said that they too had noticed it particularly; and when they came towards the southern extremity of the lake, found that it was an optical deception, caused by a tongue of high land, that put out for a long distance from the middle of the southern extremity, as in the map; and being much higher than the valley beyond it, intercepted the view in the manner we had both noticed; this tongue of land, he said, was composed of solid salt, tending to confirm the assertion of Strabo, to which I referred in my journey through Idumea, that in the great valley south of the Dead Sea there were formerly large cities built entirely of salt. The reader will take this for what it is worth ; it is at least new, and it comes from the only living man who has explored the lake.
“He told me some other particulars; that the boat, when empty, floated a palm higher out of the water than on the Mediterranean ; and that Costigan lay on the water, and picked a fowl, and tried to induce him to come in; that it was in the month of July, and from nine to five dreadfully hot, and every night a north wind blew, and the waves were worse than in the Gulf of Lyons; and, in reference to their peculiar exposures, and the circumstances that hurried poor Costigan to his unhappy fate, he said that they had suffered exceedingly from the heat, the first five days Costigan taking his turn at the oars; that on the sixth day their water was exhausted, and Costigan gave out; that on the seventh day they were obliged to drink the water of the sea ; and on the eighth they were near the head of the lake, and he himself exhausted, and unable any longer to pull an oar. There he made coffee from the water of the sea ; and a favourable wind springing up, for the first time they hoisted their sail, and in a few hours reached the head of the lake ; that, feeble as he was, he set off for Jericho, and, in the mean time, the unhappy Costigan was found by the Arabs on the shore a dying man, and, by the intercession of the old woman, carried to Jericho. I ought to add, that the next time he came to me, like Goose Gibbie, he had tried whether the money I gave him was good, and recollected a great many things he had forgotten before. Vol. II. pp. 278–-282.
Arr. IX.- The Life of Oliver Goldsmith, M. B., from a
variety of original sources. By James Prior, Esq., Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries; Meinber of the Royal Irish Academy; author of the Life of Burke, &c. Philadelphia: 1 vol. 8vo. Pp. 550.
Of all the writers of whom perhaps any age can boast, Goldsmith engages most the affection and sympathies of his readers. He so identifies himself with his subject, that the interest with which leis genius invests it, is involuntarily transmitted to himself. Why is this? What secret chord of the human bosom does he touch, that teaches the heart so to vibrate in harmony with his own emotions? Is it other than a refined and delicate spirit, known as the sensibility of nature, which presides like an enchantress over his delighiful and exquisite page ?
We pour over the volumes of master minds with gratification, and rise from them with a sense of improvement. We are pleased because we are instructed, and admire for the same reason. But it requires something more than the impress of deep learning or a great understanding, to captivate our fancy and our love. It is possible to admire what we do not esteem, and still more common to be repelled from that which stands high in our estimation.
Nor is the imagination alone that quality in a writer which secures for him the sympathetic regard of his reader. The mind
may emit the subliniest conceptions of poetic genius, and yet be unmoved and cold. If the subject of an author be not in unison with the affections of our nature, if he be frigid in his treatment of it, or if he stand at a distance, as if to dictate lessons of wisdom to inferior beings, no desire will be felt towards an intimate acquaintance, and no sentiment excited but that vague impulse which pays homage to acknowledged superiority.
To Goldsmith we are allured by various concurring iniluences. We feel admiration for his genius, love for the man, and sympathy for his frailties and misfortunes.
It is a reflection upon the literature of England, that a period of sixty years elapsed from the death of one of its most charming and gifted authors, before any serious attempt was made to collect his writings or record his life. We are certainly grateful to Mr. Prior for what his diligence and talents have accomplished, in the large contribution which has been inade to the knowledge of both. But no assiduity can now recover those minute incidents of conversation and personal history, which vividly portray the man as he lived. These rest only in the memory of survivors, and if not immediately seized, become