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CLAUDE DELAVAL COBHAM
Exerpta Cypria
page 399

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CLARKE. :ÌÌÌ9 Turks of all denominations. There is hardly a Mahometan who does not bear upon one of his fingers this kind of ornament. The Turkish signet is generally a camelian stone, inscribed with a few words from the Qorâu, a proverb in Arabic, or a couplet in Persian. We found, as usual, ample employment among these men; and were so mueh occupied in the pnrsuit, that we even neglected to visit the Cathedral of St Sophia, built in the Gothic style by the emperor Justinian, when he raised the edifice of the same name in Constantinople. We have the testimony both of Drummond and Mariti for the architecture exhibited in this building. The cathedrals both of Famagusta and Nieotia are described as Gothic. If it be true, therefore, that the Nicotian church was erected by Justinian, we have authority for the existence of that style of architecture, in a high degree of perfection, so long ago as the middle of the sixth century, six hundred and forty years before the conquest of Cyprus by Richard the first; and certainly long anterior to the introduction of any specimen of the architecture called Gothic in Great "Britain. Other instances of still higher antiquity exist in Egypt and Palestine. Our success in collecting gems was so great, that the number of our acquisitions in Nieotia exceeded the total of what we had been able to procure since onr departure from Constantinople. We found also silver medajls of Antoninus Pius, Severus, Faustina, and of the Ptolemies. The bronze were all of late date, and almost all after the time of Constantine. We also made diligent inquiry concerning the Yeny Maden crystal. Some detached and very ordinary specimens of crystallized quartz were shewn to ns, by the name of Baffa stones; but the inhabitants were unable to polish even these. All the stones found in the island, capable of being polished, are sent to Grand Cairo for this purpose. This fact, while it serves to shew the wretched state of the arts in Cyprus, also conveys a proof of their flourishing state in the present capital of Egypt, beyond the notions usually entertained of that remote city. Among our intaglios were numerous representations and symbols of Tsis, Ceres, and Venus, a very beautiful gem representing Mercury leaning upon a sépulcral Stêlê; of Auubis, kneeling with the dove upon his left hand ; and one of very diminutive form, but of exquisite beauty, meriting a more particular description: it is a highly transparent garnet. The subject engraven represents a colossal statue, whose two arms extended touch the extremity of the stone. Before this figure is seen a person kneeling, in the act of worshipping the idol. This corresponds so accurately with the descriptions given of the statue of Jupiter Serapis at Alexandria, whose two hands tonched the sides of the temple, that it- is probable the gent was intended to preserve a memorial of the image. It has no resemblance to the appearance of any Grecian Deity; the calatlins, or rather the pileus, upon its head, is like that seen upon Indian or Chinese idols; and this further coincides with the history of tho worship of Serapis, transferred by one of the Ptolemies from Asia to Egypt. In the evening we mounted our mules, and again returned to At tien. Our good friend Mr Sékis had laden an ass with all sorts of provisions for our journey, but we would only accept a basket of his aprieots. These he said were nothing in comparison with the apricots he received annually frani Famagusta, yet they were the finest we had ever seen. We met caravans of camels in our way to Attien, marching according to the order always observed in the East; that is to say, in a line, one after the other; the whole caravan being preceded by an ass, with a bell about its neck. Camels never seem to seek the shade ; when left to repose, they kneel down, exposed to the hottest beams of the sun. Trees, however, are rarely seen iu this part of the island ; the inhabitants relate, that eastward of Nicotia, towards Baffa, the country being more mountainous is also well covered with wood. The rivers of Cyprus are diy during the summer months. Sudden rain swells thein into torrents. Some fell during

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