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CLAUDE DELAVAL COBHAM
Exerpta Cypria
page 186

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to cry aloud to the people to assemble in the public square to hear the good news he would tell thein, how they might escape death. Those who had escaped the scourge ran as to a fire, and the Turk dancing and jumping about the square said, "Rejoice all uf you and dance with me, for I announce that in half an hour I shall die on this spot, and immediately after my death the plague will cease." They wondered at his words, and waited to see the issue, but when the moment came for the Turk to visit the abode of Pluto his body fell stark on the square. Great was the alami and wonder of all, which increased yet more when the plague ceased. The news was carried forthwith to the Pasha, who gave thanks to Mahomet and ordered that a grand tomb should 1» built for the dead man, around whose body was a great procession, the Pasha himself joining it with much devotion. The very next day another man inspired by the spirit of darkness did a diabolic and desperate deed. He took his stand in the middle of the square of Fainagusta, stripped himself naked, and with a knife ripped open his belly l>efore the people and dragging forth Ids bowels said, "I die for the love I bear to our great prophet Mahomet, to whom I now offer my bowels." With these words the poor wretch died. The Greek monk who had been my guide through the island, hearing tlint the plague had ceased at Fainagusta, at once hired a donkey and without bidding us adieu started for his home. It were nut worth my while tu linger just now over an account of the manners of the Turks, their errore and superstitions, I will only touch on what I saw iu Cyprus of the stupidity and coarseness of these barbarians. A certain herb grows in the island called Amphiam or Haffiou which they prepare in various ways for eating, and say that when they have eaten of it they see in their dreams the most delightful gardens in the world, and a thousand like blundering impertinences hatched from their own brains. But these poor sots du nut know that this herb has the power of making η man drunken, as though he had drunk wine. ******* ********* The next day, Wednesday, May 17, we landed to hear Mass iu the church uf S. Lazarus, which two months since the Christians had bought from the Turks for the sum of three thousand aspre*, about thirty-one gold crowns; Mass is now said therein according to both the Greek and Latin rites. [The author gives more details of the alarms and difficulties which delay his departure: then—'] To speak generally of the position, size and fertility of the kingdom of Cyprus—it is mountainous iu parts, much longer thau its breadth, from west to east 240 miles long and 80 miles broad, its circuit six hundred. Nearly iu the middle is the city of Nicosia, its capital : not Fainagusta, as some think, whieh is at one of the eastern points of the- island. Bnt on account of its fine harbour and incomparable fortress the Pasha generally lives at Fainagusta for the safety of his person and his galleys. Ships bound for Tripoli would pass the city on the left band : it lies close to the sea, and near it is the prison where S. Catherine was confined before she was beheaded by her father, aw well as other ruins of the ancient city of Salamis, among which there exists still a church built on the spot where the Apostle Barnabas suffered martyrdom. We were infinitely sorry not to have the happiness of seeing it, when we were but nine leagues away. Bnt it was nut our will, but our ardent desire to see something of more importance that made us lose this opportunity, however on my return to Cyprus on my voyage to Daiuiettn I had my wish gratified. The island is situated between the gulf of Satellia and the Caramaniaii Sea un the one hand, and Syria and Palestine on the 176 EXCERPTA CYPRIA.

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