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* representations he has given of the 1828.) Review.Dr. Walsh's Journey from Constantinople to England. 53 same inflexible determination in executing purpose.“ Like Peter, be found the domineering of his Prætorian guards no longer tolerable; and as Peter rid himself of his Strelitzes, so Mahomed determined to dispose of his Janissaries." He is not in the prime, though still in the vigour of life; he is the last of the race of Mahomet of an age fit to reign; and it is to this circumstance he is supposed to have been indebted for his inviolability on the part of the Janissaries. He is versed in oriental literature, and less tinctured with prejudice than Turkish princes usually are. “ He is not a man of morose or cruel disposition in his own family; on the contrary, he has several daughters by different mothers, to all of whom he is affectionately attached, and in his ordinary intercourse in private life he is urbane and affable.” Though bare barous towards his own subjects, he has been always moderate, and even courteous, towards Franks.
Passing over the many topics of interest connected with the existing state of affairs, which are treated "of" by Dr. Walsh in the commencement of his character of the Ultra-Carpathian nations, with whom the Russian armies will have to deal.
From Burghaz, nearly to the Balkan range, which bounds the province of Roumelia, the country is a flat, with scarcely a tree, and for some distance without inhabitants. The commencement of the Balkans is about 140 miles from Constantinople. The pass of the higher mountains is a rent, or gap, through which a small river runs. The road is extremely difficult and dangerous, “ This ravine is, perhaps, one of the most picturesque in Europe, and far ex. ceeds the trosachs of Lough Catherine, or any that I had seen before. Its perpendicular sides ascend to an immense height, covered with wood from the bottom to the top, and leaving a very narrow stripe of blue sky between." The bridges thrown over the chasms are fragile, and our traveller was nearly killed by the breaking of one.
Having crossed the mountain, the traveller finds himself in Bulgaria,
The present district of Bulgaria extends from the mouth of the Danube, along that river, till it meets the Timosk, above Widdin, having the river for the whole of its northern boundary, and the parallel chain of the Balkan for its southern ; including a well-defined space, about three hundred and fifty miles long, and from forty to fifty broad. The inhabitants, however, have gone far beyond those artificial limits. They have, by degrees, expanded themselves across the chain of mountains, and occupy, almost exclusively, a considerable space of Roumelia at the other side, supplying the waste of its own population. As the fiery and ardent temperament of the Turks and Greeks mutually exhaust them, these quiet and industrious peasants creep on, and if they are allowed to proceed unchecked, will, in process of time, fill up the whole of that almost uncultivated and depopulated space which lies on the south of the Balkan, between the sea and the mountains, by a process much more desirable than invasion or conquest,
The people have now entirely laid aside the military character that once distinguished their ancestors. The great body of them is altogether pastoral, and live in small hamlets, forming clusters of houses, which have neither the regularity, nor deserve the name, of towns. They have a few, however, where they are engaged in commerce, and carry on manufactures. The town of Selymnia, on the south side of the Balkan, contains nearly 20,000 inhabitants, the large majority of whom are Bulgarians. Here they frabricate, to a great extent, several manufactured articles, which are famous in Turkey; one is a coarse woollen cloth, and another, rifle gun-barrels, which are held in hi
which is most congenial to their rural habits, is the preled otto, or attar of roses. A large district, in the
19. open, artless, and be
neighbourhood of Selymnia, is laid out in gardens for this purpose ; and
the abundance of rose-trees adds another feature to this beautitul country. A great part of the produce is brought to England; and we are indebted to these simple peasants for the most exquisite and elegant perfume in nature.
Of all the peasantry I have ever met with, the Bulgarians seem the most simple, kind, and affectionate; forming a striking contrast with the rude and brutal Turks, who are mixed among them, but distinguished by the strongest traits of character. On the road we frequently met groups of both, always separate, but employed in the same avocations; the Turks were known by turbans, sashes, pistols, and yatigans ; but still more, by a ferocity of aspect, a rude assumption of demeanour, and a careless kind of contempt, that at once repulsed and disgusted us. They never turned their buffaloes or arubas out of the way to let us pass, or showed the smallest civil or obliging; on the contrary, were pleased if they pushed us into a bog in the narrow road, or entangled us among trees or bushes. Any accommodation in houses was out of the question : if we approached one for a drink of milk or water, we ran the hazard of being stabbed or shot. The Bulgarians were distinguished by caps of brown sheep-skin; jackets of cloth, made of the wool, undyed, of dark brown sheep, which their wives spin and weave; white cloth trowsers, and sandals of raw leather, drawn under the sole, and laced with thongs over the instep; and they carried neither pistol nor yatigan, nor any other weapon of offence: but they were still more distinguished by their countenance and demeanour. The first is nevolent; and the second is so kind and cordial, that every one we met seemed to welcome us as friends. Whenever their buffaloes or arubas stopped up the way, they were prompt to turn them aside; and whenever they saw us embarrassed, or obliged to get out of the road, they were eager to show us it was not their fault. Their houses were always open to us, and our presence was a kind of jubilee to the family; the compensation we gave scarcely deserved the name, and I am disposed to think, if not offered, would not be asked for.
The B to run, In the campaign of 1810, the main body of the Russian army reached Shumla, in the centre of this province; and although ithe cossacks crossed the Balkan, and rode up to the suburbs of Burghaz, eighty-four miles only from Constantinople, Shumla was the real limit of the Russian invasion. Of their chance of success on the present occasion, Dr. Walsh expresses the following opinion :- 1 1 visoke-109 3194 29etu sille
studyle ilgili hus! 10 J114 Y: 379 00 9. nond The Russians withdrew from the pro
provinces of Wallachia and Moldavia, which they had occupied for seven years, and have never since entered them : they are o
now, how ever, in appearance, about their desperate conflicts, and dye the Danube again with blood ; and the general opinion is, that they will meet with no opposition to their further progressb
but certainly the events of the last campaign should induce us to adopt a different opinion. They ayajled themselves of a moment of their énemies weakness, and advanced, with little opposition, to that river: here they stopped ; and after a very sanguinary and persevering conflict of six years, we find them, at the end of that period, still on its shores. Whenever they attempted to proceed beyond it, they were driven back with carnage, and a single town scarcely fortified, as contemptible in the eyes, as it would be weak in the hands, of European troops, effectually arrested their career. *
Should they force this artificial barrier, they have to encounter a natural one, inf nitely more formidable, and that is, the Balkan Mountains. Over this great rampart there are five practicable passes. One from Sophia to Tartar Bazargic; two from Ternova, by Keisanlik and Selymnia ; and two from Shumla, by Carnabat and Haidhos. The three first lead to Adrianople, the two last directly to Constantinople. Of these, the roads by Ternova are the most difficult, as they pass over the highest and most inaccessible hills of the chain ; that by Haidhos is the most frequented—the chasm in the face of the mountain affording a greater facility of 'ascent than elsewhere. Any of the passes, however, do not appear to be impracticable for Turkish Spahis. These
4. no effectual
are, a kind of
country, from the Balkan to campaign they were in possession of the whole of the
100,000 men in the
of feudal cavalry, possessing hereditary lands, on the tenure of appearing in the field when callen on. Some of their troops are called, for their headlong and wreckless impetuosity, Delhis, or madmen ; and the desperate enterprizes they undertake, justifies the name. Such cavalry, in the passes of the Balkan, must oppose a formidable resistance to the most effective and best disciplined troops ; and no doubt the Russians, if they ever attempt this barrier, will find it so.
Another obstacle will be afforded by the season of the year. The only time for operation is the spring : the country is then exceedingly beautiful and healthful, the rivers are full of sweet water, the grass and fodder abundant, and the air elastic and healthful; but as the 'summer advances, the rivers dry up, vegetables disappear, and nothing is presented but an arid, burning soil, intolerable from the glare of the sun by day, and dangerous from the cold and the damp of the heavy dews by night; and the morbid effects of these every arıny has experienced, campaigning in those countries at that season, both in ancient and modern times. To pass this chain in winter, with an army, seems a still more hopeless attempt: the morasses saturated with rain, incapable of supporting the heavy burthen of waggons or artillery ; the ravines filled with snow or mountain torrents, and passed over by tottering bridges of wood, so rotten as to break with the smallest pressure ; the numerous defiles, which a few can defend against a multitude, affording so many natural fortresses, behind which the Turks fight with such energy and effect; the scattered villages, which can afford neither shelter nor supplies, all these present obstacles, of which the Russians themselves seem very conscious. In their last
the Danube, with the exception of Varna, Nyssa, and Shumla, in which tlie Turks were shut up; a they had nearly plain below, completely equipped, and were at the very base of the mountain, and the entrance to the passes ; yet they never attempted to ascend, with the exception of a few straggling Cossacs, who made a dash across the ridge, and returned as speedily back again.
The Turks seem to have no apprehension of an approach to the capital on this side : relying on the natural strength of this chain of mountains, they have not fortified any of the i passes, nor do I recollect a single fortress from Shumla to Constantinople. Their great apprehension is, that the invasion will be made by sea; and in this pera suasion, not only the Dardanelles, but the Bosphorus, resembles one continued for tress, from the Sea of Marmora to the Black Sea. In the year 1821, when a rupture was apprehended with Russia, all the castles were completely repaired, and additional batteries were erected on every point of land which bore advantageously on the channel, so as to present a most formidable obstruction to any approach by water. These batteries, however, were altogether untenable, if attacked on the land side; the high ground, above the shores of the Bosphorus, everywhere commanding them : and if a landing were effected anywhere in the rear, which it was at that time said was the plan of the Russians, they must be immediately abandoned.' But it seems as if the Turkish power in Europe was fast bastening to ruin, which the few convulsive efforts they occasionally make cannot avert or long delay,
The most striking circumstance to a traveller in the Turkish provinces is their depopulation. This is not so observable in large towns (though Con staatinople has lost more than half its inhabitants within the last twenty years) as in the country; where villages existed, there are uninhabited wastes. From the co-operation of various causés, there is more of human life wasted, and less supplied, in Turkey, than in any other country. day, life going out in the fairest portion of Europe; and the human race threatened with extinction, in a soil and climate capable of supporting the most abundant population.”
The people of Moldavia and Wallachia, the countries between the Pruth and the Danube, and now occupied by the Russian armies, are unwarlike and physically weak; their disposition indolent. Their moral qualities are modi
“We see, every
fied by their physical temperament; great crimes are unknown amongst a people who have not sufficient bardihood to attempt them. From this cause, and the rapacity of the Turks, the effects of human labour are not visible in this fertile country. The population of the two provinces is estimated at a million and a half. The peasants are not, as formerly, bound to the soil, but are at liberty to move where they please; they are only subject to a capitation tax. The great mass of the people are very illiterate.
The basis of the language of these and the adjoining provinces is the Latin, which is spoken generally, and with something of a Roman purity in Transylvania. Upon Dr.Walsh's arrival at Hermanstadt, the first principal town in Transylvania, he was surprised to find Latin the common language of the people; not a jargon like the Wallachian tongue, but “such as is taught and spoken in our classical schools and colleges, and pronounced exactly as in Ireland," of which country we suspect our author is a native:
I was awoke in the morning by a man, who came with a lantern into my room before it was day. He held in his hand a glass, and said distinctly, “ Visne schnaps, Domine." Well pleased to hear a language I could understand in the inn, I said, 6* Quid est schnaps ?" He held up his finger in the manner of demonstrating a proposi. tion, and said, “ Schnaps, Domine, est res maximè necessaria omnibus hominibus omni mane." Satisfied with his definition, I declined any further proof; but was greatly amused at the boots of an obscure inn talking distinct Latin, which he told me was the common language of the house.
Another curious fact related by Dr.Walsh is the popularity of Sir Walter Scott's novels in these remote parts. At the quarantine in the Carpathian mountains our author solaced himself with some of these works, which, he says, are the delight of the Boyars of Wallachia ; and in Transylvania, happening to enter a bookseller's shop, the owner pointed to a portrait, observing, in French, that it was “Le Sieur Valtere Skote, l'homine le plus célèbre en toute l'Europe." ? In Transylvania, our traveller was much struck with the Saxon colonies, which have taken ground here, forming an heptarchy. They are the descendants of those families who were driven from Saxony in an early period of the reformation, and were suffered to plant themselves here as a barrier against the encroachment of the Turks, whom they valiantly withstood. They retain all their ancient traits of character, differing little in air, manner, and dress from the primitive reformers. They are of a very grave demeanour, with serious thinking faces; they have, in general, aquiline noses, dark and somewhat stern countenances, to which black mustachios give a sombre caste ; their persons are large and robust; and their very gait has a certain air of sturdy independence; they wear large round felt hats, from under which their long strait hair hangs down loose about their face and shoulders ; short costs and large breeches, like the doublet and hose of their forefathers : in fact, they nearly resemble the figures represented in the wood-cuts to be seen in the " black letter” histories of the early reformers. A graphic representation of these Transylvanian Saxons fully supports the description.
We conclude our notice of the interesting work of Dr. Walsh with the following reflections upon the present crisis, and upon the character of the Greeks :
Whatever be the future fate of this extraordinary nation ; whether, having thus advanced into the heart of Christendom, and vainly attempted to establish the religion of the Koran on the ruins of that of the Gospel in the west, as they had done in is the design of Providence that they should now return to the place from
came, after having used them as instruments for its own purpose, to prove the final permanenty of the religion of Christ; or, whether they will be permitted to remain in Europe, and at length adopt, not only its arts and sciences, but its religious belief also ; and so be no longer a peculiar people, but amalgamated with the rest, and received as members of the great European family. Whatever may be reserved for them, there is one subject of pure congratulation, which no change of events can now alter; and that is, the safety and independence of the Greeks.
You have been in the habit of despising this people, and believe them so sunk and degraded from their former name as hardly to be recognized as the same nation ; but certainly my experience of them for several years would induce me to adopt a different opinion; their strong moral features, like those of their lavguage, though debased by some recent barbarisms, remain essentially the same, the character of both being but little altered. As far as they have had opportunities, they have evinced the same industry, activity, genius, love of literature, enterprize, talent, and intrepidity; shaded, at the same time, with the levity, fickleness, personal jealousies, cruelty, and want of faith, which occasionally distinguished their ancestors; and assuredly they are not inferior to them in an ardent and unextinguishable love of liberty, and their country, for which they have perilled as much, and fought as bravely, in the days of the Turks, as their ancestors in the days of the Persians. To their domestic virtues I should be very unjust if I did not pay them the tribute they deserve.. I have nowhere met more kind and cordial people to strangers; or, who perform the relative duties in their own families with stronger affections, in which I am disposed to think they exceed their progenitors. If, in addition to this, we consider the obligations we owe their nation our sympathy will not be confined to mere respect for their unchanged character. We acknowledge them as our masters in literature and the arts and sciences, and the source from whence we derive whatever is estimable in those attainments; and so they are endeared to us by all the recollections connected with such interesting subjects ; but we do not seem to remember that they are our instructors in religion also, that their jan. guage was the medium through which the Gospel was first conveyed, and their cities were among the first where it was preached and adopted. And when Providence, for its own wise purposes, permitted to Mahomedanism a temporary triumph in Europe, no inducement or intimidation could prevail on the modern Greeks to abandon the cause of Christianity; but, for four centuries, they cherished and kept alive the sacred flame, in the centre of the Turkish empire. To hold forth the hand of help to such a people; to put an end to the carnage that was consuming them, and rescue the ur subdued and unyielding remnant from utter extermination; and, finally, to place them in such a state of security as no future domination established in those countries can have any pretext to interfere with, was surely an effort most worthy of England, and one of those bright events which will dignify the page of her future history.
Statement relative to Serampore, Supplementary to a: Brief Memoir.” By
J. MARSHMAN, D.D. With Introductory Observations, by John FOSTER. London, 1828. 8vo. pp. 244.
It is greatly to be lamented that the dispute between the Baptist Migsionaries of Serampore and the parent Society in England cannot be adjusted without these reiterated appeals to the public, which do much harm to both parties, as well as to the missionary cause, and even to religion itself. When the missionaries were calumniated by the press, they were justified in employing the same medium to set themselves right in the estimation of the world; but the public press was not a fit vehicle for the statements subsequently made. Is it impracticable for the parties to agree in the choice of a discreet, impartial, and judicious person, to whose arbitration they mi ubmit the matters in te? Surely they must both be sensible that ation of pamphlets Journ. Vol. 26. No.151.