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CLAUDE DELAVAL COBHAM
Exerpta Cypria
page 389

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We had searee entered the hay, when we observed, to the north-east, a lurid haze, as if the atmosphere was on fire : and suddenly, from that qnarter, a hurricane took us, that laid the Ceres upon her beam-ends. At the time of this squall, 1 endeavoured to ascertain the temperature of this blast. We found it so scorching, that the skin instantly peeled from our lips; a tendency to sneeze was excited, accompanied with great pain in the eyes, and chapping of the hands and face. The metallic scale of the thermometer, suspended in a port-hole to windward, was kept in a horizontal position by the violence of the gale; and the mercury, exposed to its full current, rese six degrees of Fahrenheit in two minutes, from eighty to eighty-six ; a singular consequence of north-east wind to Englishmen, accustomed to consider this as the coldest to which their island is exposed. All the coast of Cyprus, from Salines to Famagmsta, anciently Salamis, is liable to hot winds, from almost every point of the compass; from the north-east; from the east; from the south-cast; from the south; and south-west. The north-east, coming from the parched "deserts of Curdistan ; the east from the sands of Palmyra; the south-east, from the great desert of Arabia; and the south, and south-west, from Egypt and Libya. From the west, north-west, and north, the inhabitants are shut by high mountains, lying open to the beams of a scorching sun, reflected from a soil so white, that the glare is often sufficient to cause temporary blindness, without even the prospect of a single erae, beneath which one might hope for shade. In the middle of the day, few animals are seen in motion, except the lizard, seeming to sport with greatest pleasure where the sun is most powerful, and a species of long black serpents, abounding in Cyprus; one of these we killed, four feet three inches in length. Sometimes, also, a train of eamels may be noticed, grazing among dusty thistles and bitter herbs, while their drivers seek shelter from the burning noon. We found at anchor, in this bay, the Iphigenia, Captain Stackpole, from the fleet, with several transport-ships, waiting for supplies of cattle and water. On the following morning, June the seventh, about ten o'clock we landed, and carried our letters of recommendation to the different Consuls residing at Larntxa, about a mile from Salines towards the north. Here the principal families reside, although almost all commercial transactions are earned on at Salines. We dined at Larneca with onr own Consul, collecting, during our walk to and from his house, beneath the shelter of umbrellas, the few plants that occurred in onr way. In our subsequent visits, we soon found that the malaria we had witnessed from the deck of the Ceres, veiling all the harbour with its fearful mist, could not be approached with impunity. Our lamented friend, and exemplary commander, Captain Rnssel, was the first to experience its baneful influence; being seized with a fever, from which he never afterwards recovered. Indeed, the fevers of Cyprus, unlike those caught upon other shores of the Mediterranean, rarely intermit; they are almost always malignant. The strictest attention is therefore paid by the inhabitants to their diet. Fortunately for them, they have no butter on the island; and in hot weather they deem it fatal to oat fat meat or indeed flesh of any kind, unless boiled to a jelly. They likewise carefully abstain from eveiy sort of pastry; from eggs, cream, and milk. The island produees abundance of delicious apricots, from standard trees, having a much higher flavoni- than those of Rosetta., but equally dangerous to foreigners, and speedily eansing fever, if they be not sparingly used. Those of Famagusta are the most celebrated. They are sent, as aceeptable presents, to Nicotia, the capital. The apricots of Larneca are also fine, and may be purchased in the market at the small price of three shillings the bushel. Many different varieties of the gourd, or pumpkin, are used in Cyprus for vegetables at table. The young fruit is boiled, after being stuffed with rice. We found it refreshing and pleasant, partaking at the same time the CLARK Κ. 379

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