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CLAUDE DELAVAL COBHAM
Exerpta Cypria
page 227

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The Palace, formerly the residence of the Kings of Cyprus, is large and beautiful : above the entrance you see the amis of the house of Lu signa n, crowned, and quartered with those of Savoy. The Pasha or Viceroy lives there. In front is a spacious and fine square, in the midst of which is a pyramid or obelisk like those one sees at Borne. The Turks exercise their horses here every Friday. The great chnrch, once dedicated to S. Sophia, is very large and fine, all built of cut stone. The Turks hare in no way altered the building, they have contented themselves with making it their chief mosque. On the entrance here also are the arms of Lusignan, quartered with those of Jerusalem and Sicily, together with the arms of Venice and S. Mark, with their device Pax tibi Marce Evangelista in words issuing from the mouth of a lion. The city is rich in gardens full chiefly of date palms : the number of crows is incredible, the trees are black with them : they are useful as an alarum, for at dawn their croaking makes it impossible to sleep. The Turks through -some superstition will not have them killed. One of onr party conld not bear with their noise, and with a shot from his arquebus brought down several. This caused ns a deal of bother, for all the Turks of the quarter came shouting round onr house as if we had done them a great wrang, and the consul had some trouble in quieting them, besides having to give them money. Wtf stayed two days in Nicosia, and left towards evening for Famagonsta, a good day's journey away. We had travelled al wot two honrs when we saw on the plain to our right five rocks entirely hollowed ont and carved into chambers, well worth seeing. We went on throughout the night pleasantly enough over an open and level country, always accompanied by the delightful song of nightingales, whose pleasant music never failed ns. As the previous day's heat had lieen very trying so the breeze and freshness of the night were ineffably soothing. At daylight we arrived at the suburbs of Fainagousta, where we went to look for a Greek, to whom we had letters of iuti-oduction, that he might assist us in entering the city. He dissuaded us altogether, saying that it was almost impossible to go in without meeting some unpleasantness, for the Pasha who commanded there was an unreasonable brutal creature, and above all Turks a sworn enemy to the Christians. No man could take another into the city without his privity aud cousent under pain of death. The great risk we should run took away all our wish to go inside, and we were satisfied with viewing it from outside, and with walking nlong the fosse, whence we saw the whole city and the harbour. This last is divided into two, one for galleys, the other for vessels: it is commanded by a fort, the rest of the town is surrounded by a wall with several towers and two long ramparts, but not fortified on any regular plan. We spent the rest of the day at this Greek's house, left in the evening, and arrived the next morning at Nicosia, where we stayed just long enough to thank onr host, and left for Gerines to rejoin our boat and go to Alexandretta. We did not return by the road by which we came in order to see a convent of Greek monks situated among the mountains. We were told it was very beautiful, but we repented of onr curiosity on account of the badness of the patii which was all rocks and stones : most of the time we had to travel on foot, and conld scarcely drag onr horses after ns. The night overtook us before we reached the monastery, and we were forced to halt aud sleep among the hills, for we dared not travel on in the dark on account of the steep rocks and precipices which beset our every step. With the next daybreak we continued our painful journey, and it was quite midday before we arrived at the convent, suffering from the extraordinary heat, for the glare from the rocks was as fierce as the rays of the sun. STOCHOVE. 217

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