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SIR SAMUEL WHITE BAKER
CYPRUS AS I SAW IT IN 1879
page 427

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person must invariably be present as interpreter, ani unless he is a man of the highest integrity he will not lose an opportunity of turning his knowledge of state secrets to account for his own advantage. Throughout the Levant it is difficult to find men who combine the rare qualities necessary for a confidential dragoman such a person would be invaluable, as he wouk represent all the cardinal virtues, at the same time that he must possess a natural aptitude for his profession, and a store of patience, with the most unruffled temper. The natives dread the interpreter, they kno\ full well that one word misunderstood may alter the bearing of their case, and they believe that a little gold judiciously applied may exert a peculiar grammatical influence upon the parts of speech of tl dragoman, which directly affects their interests. There are, no doubt, men of honour and great capability whoi occupy this important position, at the same time it is well known that many interpreters have been founc guilty ; the exceptions proving the rule, and exhibiting the extreme danger and general disadvantage in the ignorance of the native language. It cannot be ex-] pected that the English officials are to receive miraculous gift of fiery tongues, and to address their temporary subjects in Turkish and in Greek ; but it is highly important that without delay schools should be established throughout the island for the instruction of the young, who in two or three years will obtain a knowledge of English. Whenever the people shall understand our language, they will assimilate with our! customs and ideas, and they will feel themselves a portion of our empire : but until then a void wil exclude them from social intercourse with their English rulers, and they will naturally gravitate

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