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our provisions and bedding were unpack- | formidable in case of an attack. It was ing. Then came supper, with actual not very dark; in that clear eastern athunger for a condiment. For a bed a mosphere the stars give double the light blanket was spread upon the sand, with they do with us. We passed through the a stone for a pillow, and like Jacob I lay miserable village. As we left the place, down to sleep.
our way led under the arches of an old All was stiil and hushed as we rested wall of massive stone masonry.
The under the canopy of stars, but the day's dragoman noticed my look as I turned to ride of thirteen hours had more than examine the work, and said: “That, sir, fatigued me. It had overstrained the is the wall that—that-Joshua—rams'. nervous system, and I lay gazing at the horns— blew down—and—"evidently not star-dance in the heavens hour after hour, well up in his Bible history. Observing the blanket-covered stone pillow having the smile on my face, he exclaimed, " Ah, little effect in lulling one to repose. I but it has been repaired since!"
6 Prowas, therefore, rather startled than awa- bably," said I to my veracious companion, kened when the dragoman approached, laughing outright, and so we left the an hour after midnight, and cried, “To scene of that strange miracle. horse! to horse!" How I longed for a Two, three, four, five,—the night hours sleeping car in which to finish the tour passed on as we trotted solemnly enough of Syria! but I resigned myself to the back into the wilderness. This part of inevitable, and mounted, and did not the desert was not so wild as that - set up that stone for a pillar," nor through which our route of the morning "pour oil upon it,” but cared not with led, yet it was still dangerous enough in what ignominy the next traveller would the darkness for ordinary nerves, and salute it.
looked more weirdly picturesque in the Again we started, leaving our citadel starlight than it had in the glaring suncompanions scattered about in the sand, light. apparently asleep and unconscious of our On the way we met some wandering movements, and certainly looking not very Bedouins, who were saucy enough until the brassmounted flintlocks were presented, when they suddenly be came humble and obsequious.
Wearily, slowly, and cautiously we toiled on and up, towards the far away Mount of Olives, and the night shadows vanished as the day broke on jaded steeds and jaded riders. The sun rose to make the refreshing night air hot again, and it was high in the heavens as we rounded the base of Olivet, and came in view of the sorry mass of buildings which stands over the site of old Jerusalem, — that citywhich has so often drunk the cup of bitterness to the very dregs.
We dismiss ed our soldierguard with thanks and bucksheesh crossed the valley of Jehoshaphat,entered St. Ste
JERUSALEM FROM OLIVET.
phen's gate, and, though with but little dure, not a vestige of freshness, not a elasticity or strength remaining, I began grass blade—all burned up in the long, preparing for the other half of my doubt- hot, rainless Syrian summer. ful undertaking. The Jordan and Dead My unconsciousness of fatigue was Sea water were duly “canned," and olive- unfortunately of but short duration. I wood trifles, beads and gold ornaments, soon found out that the movement of our were secured as souvenirs, and I was horses was as different as if the gait of ready.
one had been made by a carpenter, and An officer of the Turkish government that of the other by Apollo. The officer's was about to ride the rest of that day and horse had a delightful movement, half all night with dispatches for the very amble, half pace; mine was easy enough steamer I was trying to reach, and as both on a walk, a fast trot, or a run, but the consul and dragoman said I was fortu- jog-trot which would enable me to keep nate in having the opportunity of accom- by my companion was-well, like a ride panying him, I did not demur. I should, in a city railroad car off the track, or an however, have obtained another drago- excursion on a corduroy road in a cordman, (the one who went to the Dead Sea wood wagon. of course declined to go,) who could All this, however, was soon forgotten, speak English or French, and be under as I became absorbed in the curious my own control, a blunder which even- scenes which broke upon our view. It tually I had cause to regret. The little was rumored at Jerusalem that Napoleon Arab boy also, who had been with us to and Eugenie were to return the Sultan's the Jordan, was to go for the purpose of visit to the Exposition, and that at the bringing back my horse,—the father of same time they would visit the Holy the poor fellow having apparently neither Sepulchre. So Abdul Assiz, in anticipacare nor thought for his nerves nor his tion of their coming, was having a carvertebræ. The boy, in his youthful reck- riage road built from Jerusalem down to lessness, was willing enough; and after the plain. A carriage road in Syria, and eating a hearty meal, a fresh horse and built by its own inhabitants too! Long mule were prepared, my carpet bags were centuriis have passed without even the slung on each side of the latter, and the attempt at such a thing. If it be done, boy was mounted above them. I bade shades of departed camels must move in the consul and host good-by, and joined their graves at the desecration of their the officer, who was radiant in turban ways, and their meek-eyed posterity look and burnoose, at the Jaffa gate, under with astonishment at the “deformed the shadow of the Tower of David, and transformed” pathway which in its normal started on the last long heat of my doubt- state was hardly fit for the highway of a
mountain goat. But the Emperor will I was probably more fatigued than I never see that road; fate's iron hand is was aware, as the excitement of collect- upon him, and his quen too has gone to ing souvenirs and getting away made me the East, and come again without murforget for a time that I had been nine muring her orisons at Calvary, or even teen hours on horseback, with but little seeing the land which is mourning under rest, and no sleep at all. The day was the desolation of its curse. not so hot as the previous one. The To build this road, and with a sublime
was sinking in the west, towards indifference to the question whether his my
far away home, and I bade farewell subjects were machines or human beings, to the desolate city with neither affection the Sultan had commanded that each nor regret.
inhabitant should pay into the treasury Over the level, dusty road, under the a certain number of piastres, or work for walls of the Greek and Armenian con- five days on the highway; and at the vents, we went on our way, and I felt time we were passing, the men of Bethconfident of success. The desolation was lehem were “in the breach." We soon painful to behold, not a particle of ver- began to descend by the rugged bridle
path, full of boulders and cobble stones, were telling upon me fearfully; and withand came upon the first party of Beth- out feeling like absolutely breaking down lehemites at their labor. To the eye ac- at the moment, I knew that it would be customed to the Hibernian gang, building impossible to continue our pace all the a roadway in America, this party was long night. But what should I do? My curiously interesting, picturesque and burnoosed friend would not be checked; unique. The many-colored turbans, in- he must go on with his documents, and terspersed with the Mecca green, the if I did stop him I could not explain. betasselled fez, the long full beards, Indeed, I must go on too, if I would the sashes and flowing trowsers, Arabs, catch the steamer; and to give it up then Jews, Bedouins, youth, manhood, age, all and there, and turn back amongst all the blended in one picturesque view. The vassals of the Sultan, “black spirits and men were mostly stern and indifferent, white, blue spirits and gray," was not doing their liege lord's will, not very to be thought of, and even if I did heartily, and from their point of view, reach the gates of Jerusalem again, they probably, doing as necessary a piece of would be closed. Another trouble came work as we should think the carpeting of with the darkness. I had to keep up Broadway would be.
with this fellow or lose sight of him, We struck the first finished section of and this involved the danger of being the new road, extending about a hundred lost on one hand, or a dislocation from yards, and some forty feet wide, walled the horse's angular trot on the other. up on the side of the ravine, and covered However, my sufferings were again for a with fresh earth. It was of the "joy time lost sight of in the strange scenes forever” order of sensations, to get on which presented themselves. that touch of civilization, and we trotted As the twilight approached and the gayly over the soft level. I wonder what day ended, the unique laborers ceased it will be under the watery tempests of work, and were scattered about, gathera Palestine winter! At the end it was ing sticks, straw, stubble, brushwood, confusion worse confounded, for the old anything that would burn, and as the bridle path had been broken up into a shadows fell, dotted about like stars or chaos. My official had to call out several comets on the distant hills, shone out the times to the Arab workmen for guidance, little fires, where Bedouins, Arabs or and cross and recross several times before Jews were baking their bits of dough, or he could descend, and then it seemed heating their coffee, while near by as we strange that a horse could keep his foot- rode on, the fires blazed up, and the Arab ing or his balance at such an angle ; in- song came from behind the bushes, in deed in some places our horses stumbled tones so weird, so overstrained, highand slid down rather than walked. On- keyed and monotonous, that it was cuward and downward again we went, over riously in keeping with the strange scene. the slippery granite and loose boulders, It was music which perhaps made the until we came upon a mass of the tur- scene more classic and antique, but which baned laborers, all away from their work, at home would have put a third rate and quarrelling, playing or disputing, I church choir into hysterics, with its coull not guess which, as we hastened nasal, twanging monotony. The scene by, and on to the next group of the Sul- itself was exciting, almost bewildering in tan's human machines, and the next bit its strangeness.
At the roadside, as of finished road.
we journeyed along, the fires blazed All this was interesting and exciting, and the smoke curled up towards the but time hurried by as well as we. The stars, from pipes as well as from the sun sank; twilight followed in his wake, hearth-stones of sand; and dotted about and I felt then the sun of my endurance in the mountains above and below, and was also sinking into a twilight that right and left, half hidden in the gloom, boded a starless night of exhaustion. the fires shone out, and now and then The previous work, and the present gait the stars shone too, where the sparks