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to within a short distance of the sea: a severe mockery on the anxiety and foresight of the builders. It seems to be the destiny of man, that he must make his last rest beneath the earth, and not upon it: had the kings and judges of Israel been contented to repose in the tumuli on the plain or the hill-side, on their remains the dews of heaven had still descended, and the sun lingered: their sepulches of pride, carved in the rock, have been ravaged and denied as base things. The Indian prince of North, and the cacique of South America, lie each in his narrow bed, his lonely tumulus, on which the thickets blossom, and the tall grass and wild flowers wave: many a Saxon noble still rests in his sepulchre, with his arms beside him, the rude mound unbroken.
The Cove in which the boats sought shelter from the gale, on the shores of Anamour was of most romantic aspect: it had no music of streams or groves, or glad voices of children from the neat hamlet, or pipe of the shepherd: sternly girded by its pale and sullen cliffs, it was naked and silent as the empty sepulchres of Anamour; and yet most welcome, as the nearest and only refuge from the storm.
CAFES IN DAMASCUS—ON A BRANCH OF THE BARRADA.
The Cafe's of the kind represented in the plate are, perhaps, the greatest luxury that a stranger finds in Damascus. Gardens, kiosques, fountains, and groves are abundant around every Eastern capital: but Cafe's on the very bosom of a rapid river, and bathed by its waves, are peculiar to this ancient city: they are formed so as to exclude the rays of the sun, while they admit the breeze; the light roof is supported by slender rows of pillars, and the building is quite open on every side. A few of these houses are situated in the skirts of the town, on one of the streams, where the eye rests on the luxuriant vegetation of garden and wood: others are in the heart of the city: a flight of steps conducts to them from the sultry street, and it is delightful to pass in a few moments from the noisy, shadeless thoroughfare, where you see only mean gateways and the gable-ends of edifices, to a cool, grateful, calm place of rest and refreshment, where you can muse and meditate in ease and luxury, and feel at every moment the rich breeze from the river. In two or three instances, a light wooden bridge leads to the platform, close to which, and almost out of it, one or two large and noble trees lift the canopy of their spreading branches and leaves, more welcome at noon-day than the roofs of fretted gold in the "Arabian Nights." The high pavilion roof and the pillars are all constructed of wood: the floor is of wood, and sometimes of earth, and is regularly watered, and raised only a few inches above the level of the stream, which rushes by at the feet of the customer, which it almost bathes, as he sips his coffee or sherbet Innumerable small seats cover the floor, and you take one of these, and place it in the position you like best Perhaps you wish to sit apart from the crowd, just under the shadow of the tree, or in some favourite corner, where you can smoke, and contemplate the motley guests, formed into calm and solemn groups, who wish to hold no communion with the Giaour. There is ample food here for the observer of character, costume, and pretension: the tradesman, the mechanic, the soldier, the gentleman, the dandy, the grave old man, looking wise on the past and dimly on the future: the hadge, in his green turban, vain of his journey to Mecca, and drawing a long bow in his tales and adventures: the long straight pipe, the hookah with its soft curling tube and glass vase, are in request: but the poorer argilfe is most commonly used. From sun-rise to set, these houses are never empty: we were accustomed to visit one of them early every morning, before breakfast, and very many persons were already there: yet this "balmy hour of prime" was the most silent and solitary of the whole day; it was the coolest also: the rising sun was glancing redly on the waters: there was as yet no heat in the air, and the little cup of Mocha coffee and the pipe were handed by an attendant as soon as the stranger was seated, whose favourite Cafe was the one represented in the plate: the river is the Barrada, the ancient Pharpar. Never was the sound of many waters so pleasant to the ear as in Damascus: the air is filled with the sound, with which no clash of tongues, rolling of wheels, march of footmen or horsemen, mingle: the numerous groups who love to resort here are silent half the time; and when they do converse, their voice is often "low, like that of a familiar spirit," or in short grave sentences that pass quickly from the ear. Yet much, very much of the excitement of the life of the Turk in this city, is absorbed in these coffee-houses: they are his opera, his theatre, his conversazione: soon after his eyes are unclosed from sleep, he thinks of his Cafe, and forthwith bends his way there: during the day he looks forward to pass the evening on the loved floor, to look on the waters, on the stars above, and on the faces of his friends; and at the moonlight falling on all. Mahomet committed a grievous error in the omission of coffee-houses in a future state: had he ever seen those of Damascus, he would surely have given them a place on his rivers of Paradise, persuaded that true believers must feel a melancholy void without them.
There is no ornament or richness about these houses: no sofas, mirrors, or drapery, save that afforded by a few evergreens and creepers: the famous silks and damasks of Damascus have no place here; all is plain and homely; yet no Parisian Cafe, with its beautiful mirrors, gilding, and luxuriousness, is so welcome to the imagination and senses of the traveller. After wandering many days over dry, and stony, and desert places, where the lip thirsted for the stream, is it not delicious to sit at the brink of a wild impetuous torrent, to gaze on its white foam and breaking waves, till you can almost feel their gush in every nerve and fibre, and can bathe your very soul in them. And while you slowly smoke your pipe of purest tobacco, the sands of the desert, and their burning sun, rise again before you, when you prayed for even the shadow of a cloud on your way. The banks are in some parts covered with wood, whose soft green verdure contrasts beautifully with the clear torrent, and almost droops into its bosom. Near the coffee-houses are one or two cataracts several feet high, and the perpetual sound of their fall, and the coolness they spread around, are exquisite luxuries—in the heat of day, or in the dimness of evening. There are two or three Cafe"s constructed somewhat differently from those just described: a low gallery divides the platform from the tide; fountains play on the floor, which is furnished with very plain sofas and cushions; and music and dancing always abound, of the most unrefined description. The onlv intellectual gratification in these places is afforded by the Arab story-tellers,