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CLAUDE DELAVAL COBHAM
Exerpta Cypria
page 19

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Passing on we reached Cossia [Nicosia]. This is the king's captai city, situated almost in the middle of the plain; it has no fortifications. A strong casj|e has just now been built in it. It has inhabitants without number, all very rich, whose houses in their interior adornment and paintings closely resemble the houses of Antioch. In this city is the seat of the archbishop. Also the court and palace of the king, where I first saw an ostrich. This city is five miles from Scherani. On the road thither we came on many cypress trees, which grow here and there in great numbers. From those I think the island takes its name. We continued our pilgrimage thence to visit the cross of the thief who was crucified on our Lord's light hand, and reached Lamezis [Limassol]. This is a city* bnt slightly fortified, lying by the sea, with a mnch frequented harbour. Here is the first suffragan see of the lord bishop of Nicosia. Near it are the vineyards of Engaddi, concerning which see the Song of Songs i. 14 "my beloved is unto me as a cluster of Cyprus in the vineyards of Engaddi." Here also balsam used to be found bnt is no longer found. The wine* of the place are excellent ; for their sweetness trust to our experience, for we tried and tasted them. Hence we made the ascent of the mountain called of the Holy Cross, which out tops all the mountains of Cyprus. On its peak is a small convent.. Tho life of its inmates, if they will allow me to say so, is very nnlike that of monks. Within the convent is a small chapel, in which that precious cross is kept with much honour. It hangs and swings in the air, they say, resting on no support. But it is not easy to see this. This was the manner and this the reason of its being set there. The devil, that enemy of all good, pursued the settlers and dwellers of this land with such malice that he used to tear up by night the bodies of the dead who had been interred during the day, and brought them back to the homes of their friends. So that the natives could not bury their dead. Helena the mother of Constantino who was then ruler there pitied their trouble, and set that cross which she had brought whole from Jerusalem, as it stands to-day, on that mountain; and thus she drove with power those malicious foes not only from the land, bnt from the lower air which is thought to be the prison of devils, as though she used that word of the I xml "let the dead bury their dead." And thus that ancient enemy, who conquered on the cross, was by that cross conquered. Front this mountain we saw Paphos: this too is on the shore, and contains the second suffragan see of the lord bishop of Nicosia. It is a small town, and they still show there the tower on which in the days of heathen ignorance Venus was worshipped by her lovera. Onr pilgrimage was now done, and we toiled on to Famagusta. We had gone so far on foot, and were compelled for very weariness to hire asses, and thought we were going to race on them as on stout horses. Then one of our party, whom 1 do not presume to name, whose tongue many a cup had quickened, when he thought to mount, found his legs going in different ways and fell from his ass, and while trying to rise even received some kicks from it. So was our Silenus overthrown, and spurned by the ass's hoof ! He was for throwing all his mishap on the wine, when he ought rather to have followed that maxim of Cato's "You whom wine causes to err, absolve not yourself: No fault lies with tho wine, the fault is the drinker's." Hence we reached Famagusta., a city built close to the sea, with a gond harbour, slightly fortified. Here is the third suffragan see of the lord bishop of Nicosia. Near it is the site of some city now destroyed, from which, they say, came that famous and blessed Epiphanius, who is commemorated in the Canon. From this city, after a delay of three weeks while we waited for a favouring wind, we set sail, and with much toil and through a great storm we returned to Acre. 14 EXCERPTA CYPRIA.

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