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to Napoleon was doubtless favour- information procured for the Emperor able ; for in 1807 General Gardanno Napoleon, the mission was composed went ambassador to the court of not only of diplomatists, but of miliTeheran. In diplomacy, the General tary and scientific men. It comprised, was no match for Sir John Malcolni, besides its chief and his experienced whose arguments doubtless secretaries, two military officers, a powerfully backed by the strong posi- geologist, two interpreters, a physition Great Britain had assumed in cian, and two artists, who were also India, and by the naval supremacy skilled archæologists. It is to these which gave her undisputed command last, the painter and architect attached of the Persian Gulf; whilst France, to the embassy, but who remained in then all-conqnering on the European Persia long after its departure, that continent, had had her maritime pin- we owe—and exclusively to the forions clipped close by Nelson, and was mer, as far as relates to the literary far too distant to lend efficacious aid execution of the work—the interestto the Shah. Whatever the cause, ing volumes that suggest the present the last members of the French em- paper. For reasons unassigned, the bassy left Persia in 1809, their mis- abundant notes taken during rambles sion having totally failed, and thirty that terminated at the end of 1841, years elapsed before diplomatic rela- were not cast into the form of a contions were renewed. In the interim nected narrative until 1850; and it was occurred many changes. A quarter not until the following year that, upon of a century of peace allowed the two the highly flattering report of a comgreat powers whose position and pos- mittee of the French Academy, at whose sessions place them amongst Persia's request the artists had been attached nearest neighbours, time and oppor- to the embassy, the work was publishtunity to approach, and, in the case ed, under the auspices of the French of one of them, to overstep her fron- government. tier. Russia, forcing her way through Visitors to the exhibition of picthe Caucasian tribes, for whose defi- tures by living artists, held at Paris nitive subjection she still strives in in the spring of 1853, will remember vain, had advanced to within less two paintings, interesting in subject than a week's march of Teheran, and, and meritorious in execution-a View when she retired, had kept Georgia, of the Turkish Quarter at Constantithus planting a foot in Persia. In nople, and the Entrance of the Great India, England had pushed north and Mosque in the Square of Shah Abbas west; the Punjaub was soon to be at Ispahan-by M. Flandin, one of the hers, in Affghanistan her influence two gentlemen who cnjoyed the diswas powerfully felt. The trade with tinction of being recommended by the Persia was almost wholly in her hands, Academy of Fine Arts, and deputed and this the French government, ever by their government to explore the jealous of our maritime and commer- whole of Persia, note their observacial superiority, beheld with some tions, and sketch antiquities and reenvy and displeasure. The ingenious markable objects. Count de Sercey's and tasteful manufactures of France mission met little more success than might, it was thought, find a market that of General Gardanne; its stay in in Persia, as well as the more solid Persia was brief; but, after it left, products of British industry. The Messieurs Flandin and Coste reinained circumstances attending the siege of nearly two years in the country, fulHerat by the Persians, in 1839, hay- filling, often with great risk and sufing led to the withdrawal of our fering, the task allotted to them. ambassador at Teheran, the govern- With the exception of the province ment of Louis Philippe deemed the of Khuzistan (the south-western cormoment favourable for resuming diplo- ner of Persia), into which extraordimatic intercourse with Persia, and nary difficulties, and the exhaustion negotiating a treaty. And as, in the of their funds, prevented their penethirty years during which France had trating, they visited every part of the lost sight of Persia, it was reasonable Shah's dominions, and allowed no into suppose that changes had taken teresting locality to escape their inplace, diminishing the value of the vestigations. The book in which they give an account of their wanderings and containing treasures of various and adventures is one of the most kinds, was spoiled by the Egyptians, amusing we remember to have read and his military reputation was gone. relating to Persia. Its thousand close He related his misfortunes with great pages comprise an agreeable medley philosophy, except when he spoke of of antiquarian researches, sketches of his disgrace as a soldier; then his society and customs, glances at Per- brow darkened, and the old Circassian history, both ancient and modern, sian spirit flashed in his eye. In the characteristic traits, and personal in- East, men in power quickly retrieve, cidents. The time that has since not always by the most equitable elapsed may diminish the interest of means, loss of fortune ; and judging some of the notices of political events, by the splendid hospitality of Hafiz and of the sketches of persons now Pacha, he had abundant means at his dead, or forgotten, scattered through command. The bill of fare he drew the book; but these portions derive up for the embassy, which proposed attraction from M. Flandin's pleasant passing four or five days at Erzruum, style, and from the novel details he was curious by its prodigality. It has collected on the spot. Thus, on consisted of six oxen, a dozen sheep, his way through Turkey in Asia, he a thousand eggs, sixty fowls, a hunmade acquaintance at Erzroum with dred pounds of coffee, sundry jars of Hafiz Pacha, the general whom Ibra- wine; fruit, butter, honey, and tohim Pacha defeated with such griev- bacco in a like lavish measure. And ous loss at that celebrated battle of on their departure he presented the Nezib, which gave Syria to Egypt, members of the mission with sixteen until British arms and diplomacy dis- horses and sixteen Damascus sabres, possessed Mehemet Ali of it in 1840. and sent twenty thousand piastres At half an hour's march from the (£200) to be distributed amongst their gates of Erzroum, a company of in- attendants. The money was posifantry and a crowd of officers of all tively refused; the horses and arms ranks met the French embassy, and they could not decline without offendwith them came, as an offering to the ing the generous and warm-hearted ambassador from Hafiz Pacha, a fine donor. grey Arabian horse—the same, it was Having explored, at a recent date, said, which, by its flectness, saved his in company with a German traveller, lite when he was overcome by the the road from Trebizond to Tabriz,* Egyptian. Three or four days passed we will not linger upon that line of at Erzroum gave the members of the country, but plunge at once into the embassy opportunities of appreciat- heart of Persia, merely noting an obing the fine qualities of the Pacha, servation made by M. Flandin upon whose misfortune at Nezib was owing several occasions during his passage to the badness of his troops—Turkish through Turkey in Asia, and to which recruits, hastily raised and wholly in- recent discussions concerning the conexperienced. Hafiz himself, a Cir- dition of the Christian subjects of the cassian by birth, displayed the utınost Porte give interest. The travellers bravery, and left the field only when were struck by tho remarkable differall was manifestly and irretrievably ence in the aspect of the Mussulman lost, and when his cavalry's flank was and the Christian villages—the former turned by the enemy, to whom his miserable and dirty, the latter clean infantry went over. Then he fled, and apparently prosperous.

At Molescorted by five or six faithful officers, lah-Suleiman, a village peopled enand threw himself into the mountains tirely by Armenian Catholics, the of Kourdistan. Attacked by a numer- party of Frenchmen were received ous band of Kourds, he and his little with joyful hospitality, and regaled escort defended themselves valiantly, with the best the place afforded ; with escaping at last with life, but with the cream, honey, and coffee, and the inloss of all besides. The Pacha's tent, evitable tchibouk. Whilst thus fosgorgeous with gold and silk, full of tering their guests, the villagers conrich carpets and objects of great value, fided to them their troubles and griev

* Blackwcod's Magazine, No. ccccxlii. for August, 1852.

ances, complained of the Turks, of reception. The Shahzadeh (son of a their avarice, and of the vexations shah) was seated at the farther end of they had to endure from them, and a magnificent apartment, whose walls implored the ambassador's protection. were entirely covered with mirrors, “Nevertheless," M. Flandin observes, arabesque paintings, with pictures of " and notwithstanding all our good. Persian victories, and with portraits will to compassionate their sufferings, of Ghenghis Khan, Nadir Shah, and we could not help remarking the evi- other Persian heroes. He took no dence of easy circumstances every- notice of the entranee of the foreigners, where to be observed in this village. and looked extremely sulky—perhaps The houses were well built, clean, and on account of the tenacity with which so divided that men and beasts did the ambassador had protested against not, as with the Kourds, herd together separating himself from his boots. The in common. The inference we drew prince, who was gorgeously dressed, was, that if the Catholics are unhappy with great gold epaulets on his shoulunder the Turkish yoke, they are cer- ders, the Lion and Sun upon his tainly not more so than the Mussul. breast, a gold girdle with diamond mans themselves."

clasp round his waist, and Cashmere M. Flandin, who had been in socks upon his feet, “ seemed to be of Algeria, was reminded of the Arab the middle height, and, notwithstand. fantasias by the Persian “istak bals.” ing his dark complexion and long black This word, which signifies to go and mustaches, he was of very effeminate meet, has been made into a substan- aspect. He doubtless thought it betive, expressing the customary cere- fitted his dignity to carry etiquette to mony of sending a body of horsemen the most complete immobility when to meet persons of distinction on their the ambassador presented himself, for arrival at a town. When the embassy he did not rise, and made no gesture reached Tabriz, five or six hundred until the customary salutations had officers and public functionaries, foreign been gone through. Then he deigned consuls and others, rode out to receive to make signs to us to be seated. He them, and the whole population of the received with remarkable coldness the place was in the streets to stare at the customary compliments addressed to strangers. After a vast deal of dis- him. Whatever may have been the cussion on points of etiquette, whether flowers with which the interpreter boots were or were not to be left at embellished his discourse, their perthe door, and whether secretaries were fume seemed little to the prince's to sit or to stand in the presence of a taste.

He could not avoid saying a prince of the blood, the ambassador few words to the ambassador on the and his suite were admitted to the subject of his journey and arrival, presence of Karaman Mirza, the but they were as dry as they were Shah's brother and governor of the laconic.

The interview was very province. The audience was post- brief, and we took away a highly poned longer than it otherwise would unfavourable opinion of Karaman have been, by reason of a fall of snow. Mirza.” Fortunately for M. FlanTo have arrived wet at the prince's din, not all the princes of the blood seraglio would have been offensive to were equally unamiable, and he soon Persian notions. A good Mussul- . became on intimate terms with Malekman considers his dwelling defiled by Khassem-Mirza, an uncle of the unmoisture proceeding from the dress of civil Karaman, a man remarkable for a Christian. A Persian grandee in his extensive acquirements, for his charge of the embassy, too polite to interest in European affairs, and for state this reason plainly, merely said his knowledge of six languages, inthat it would be more proper to wait cluding French. As to Karaman, he for fine weather. Extremely ill at continued to sulk. M. de Sercey had ease upon the Persian saddles of the brought a host of presents with him horses, which, according to etiquette, from France-watches and cloaks, the prince had sent from his own and jewels, rich stuffs, illusstables, the members of the embassy trated works, and Sèvres china. But reached the palace, where they had on the long journey accidents had small reason to be gratified with their happened; mules had rolled into ravines, precious packages had been has singular vigour, but in their perrudely handled, and some slight spective they completely break down. damage had been done. This was Small paintings of flowers or ornathe case with a costly Sèvres tea-ser- ments they execute admirably, but as vice, intended for Karaman Mirza. soon as they attempt subjects on a The injury could not be repaired; and large scale, their want of study and doubtless it was trifling, for the am- science becomes manifest, and they bassador decided to send the china as produce effects at which a European it was. It was refused.

arms

A rose- cannot but smile.* Prince Khassem leaf,” replied the prince, whose meta- gave M. Flandin every facility for phors were decidedly superior to his studying the various costumes of the manners, “sent by a friend, had in country, and took great pleasure in his eye the value of the revenue of the being with him when he painted. In universe; but the leaf must not be the conversations they then held, he disfaded.” There was nothing to be played such enlightened ideas, and such made out of so captious a personage, tolerance in religious matters, and in whose uncle did all in his power to all that concerned intercourse between atone for his ungraciousness, getting Christians and Mussulmans, that the up hunting and hawking parties for artist was one day emboldened to the entertainment of the strangers, ask him for an opportunity of paintand showing them much hospitality. ing a woman in the dress of the And M. Flandin was indebted to him harem. The prince smiled at the for the most signal and rarest favour eagerness and confidence with which a Mussulman can confer upon a Chris- he made so unheard-of a request, but tian—that, namely, of admission into after a moment's reflection he prothe recesses of his harem-a favour mised to comply with it.

Two or which, had it become known, would three days passed without M. Flanhave entailed upon Prince Malek- din's hearing anything more of the Khassem disgrace at court, and the matter, or daring to repeat his petiindignation of the population of Ta- tion. briz. But the prince was remark- “ One night I received a message ably free from Oriental prejudices, from the prince, who invited me to and a great lover of art, and had go and sup with him. His physician, conceived a friendship for the French an old white-bearded Frank, whose painter, to whom he allotted as a origin and science were alike unknown studio the divan in which he gave to us, but who was a good sort of his daily audiences. M. Flandin had man, and the Shahzadeh's intimate been but a short time amongst the confidant, came to conduct me to the Persians before observing their de- place of rendezvous. The night was cided taste for the arts, and especially very dark; we were preceded by a for painting, contrasting strongly ferrash, carrying a white linen lanwith Turkish contempt for the pro- tern, in which burned an ductions of the pencil

. Not only in bougie, whose light denounced us from the palaces of the wealthy but in afar to the fury of the wandering ordinary private houses he constantly dogs, but enabled us pretty well to met with pictures, and he declares avoid the heaps of snow, swept off the Persians to have a strong feeling the roofs of the houses, that encumfor art, and the capacity of becoming bered the street. Thus we threaded excellent painters. Their colouring a number of dark and deserted lanes,

enormous

The late Persian ambassador in London, Shafi Khan, brought with him a portrait of the present Shah, the size of life, representing a handsome young man, excessively bearded, but having much of that effeminate cast of countenance which appears a characteristic of many Persians. In this picture the faulty perspective referred to by M. Flandin was extremely glaring. In the execution of the portrait itself there was considerable merit. It was highly finished, and conveyed the idea of a good likeness. But in the background the artist had displayed a line of troops, intended evidently to be far in the rear of the Shah, but which apparently were but a few yards from him, and looked like a row of uniformed Lilli. putians under command of an Oriental Gulliver.

seen.

and walked round the walls of the the music and dancing continued. Ark, that part of the town which The dancers had little cymbals like contains the seraglios of the princes castanets, but made of ringing metal, and the barracks of the troops. Then, fastened to their fingers, and with instead of going to the great gate of them marked the time. They at the palace, we stooped and passed first appeared to dance out of comthrough a postern opening upon a plaisance for their lord and master, little back court, dark and silent. but soon they became heated and Our guide extinguished his lantern, animated, their movements increased and the doctor, making sign to me to in vivacity, and the orchestra, which follow, knocked gently at a small consisted of two tambourines, a mandoor, which was cautiously opened. doline, and of a sort of three-stringed Here was mystery enough, and per- violin played by a blind man, played haps some danger; but the originality fast :r and more vigorously, until 'exof the adventure delighted mo, and I citement and exhaustion threw the did as I was bid, at risk of whatever dancers into a singular sort of nervous might happen. We passed through paroxysm. M. Flandin, however, a dark apartment and a long wind- was best pleased when they remained ing corridor, ascended a few steps, in a state of indolent repose, in which crossed a second apartment, imper- he had better opportunity of observfectly lighted, but in which I was able ing their dress and appearance, with to discern a great number of pictures a view to future artistic delineations. representing women dancing or play. Such opportunities are rare in a couning, subjects I had as yet nowhere try where women walk abroad but

I concluded I was in the part little, and when they do, are closely of the house which is never opened to veiled and muffled. It is probable foreigners--that is to say, in the ze- that during his whole residence and nanah or women's apartments. I wanderings in Persia, he never saw so continued to follow the hakim, who many women's faces as were upon that seemed perfectly to know his way, evening assembled before him, and and soon we reached one of those submitted to his inquisitive gaze. He great door - curtains called perdehs, made the most of his good fortune, which rose suddenly before me. I and gives a minute account of the was dazzled by the blaze of light costume and attractions of the inthat filled a spacious saloon, all glit- mates of the complaisant Shahzadeh's tering with gold, paintings, and mir- harem. The cosmetic appliances of

In the centre of the room a the fair Persians appear, from the score of women, surprised by my ap- following passage, to be both numeparition, shrieked with terror and rous and curious :sought to hide their faces. Prince “ The Persian ladies, judging from Malek-Khassem, whom I did not at those of the andergûn in which I first distingush, was lying at the found myself, have very small mouths, farther end of the apartment on car- beautiful teeth, features generally soft pets and cushions, and burst into a and delicate, and large well-cut eyes. hearty laugh at my stupefaction, They are accustomed to paint the inwhich, to say the truth, was not less ternal edge of the eyelids black, and than that of the ladies. The Shah- to prolong in the corners the black zadeh invited me to approach him, line which they draw, with a very and said that, desirous of gratifying fine brush, along the root of the lashes. the wish I had expressed, but unable The most elegant and refined amongst to dispose of other persons' property, them wear patches and use rouge. the only thing he could do was to re- They all dye their hands orange ceive me in his own Anderoun.” colour with henna, a dye brought

The houris of this terrestrial para- on purpose from India, making themdise soon recovered from their alarm, selves thus a sort of glove, reaching which was_replaced by curiosity. to the wrist. The soles of the feet Whilst M. Flandin, his amiable en- are singularly tinted, imitating a shoe, tertainer, another member of the Per- and the nails are painted with carsian royal family, and the Frank mine. Their hair is naturally very doctor, partook of an elegant supper, fine, and of a blue black ; but in order

rors.

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