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CLAUDE DELAVAL COBHAM
Exerpta Cypria
page 448

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who forthwith ran away; and as the porter himself sat all the while quietly smoking his pipe while be issued his decrees, we met with no further obstacle. We rode in a northerly direction over the plain of Nicosia, which extends on this side to the sea. Tlie land immediately in the vicinity of the city is sown with corn—we have as yet seen no vines on onr road—and the flatness of the plain is occasionally interrupted by low hills sometimes of earth and sometimes of rock. At half past ten we alighted, and dined under a few mulberry trees, near which were the ruins of an arched cistern, whose water flowed in small streams over the plain. Leaving this pretty spot, we proceeded at eleven along the plain, and at noon saw the sea to the north of the island, having to our left a high ridge of brown monntains, and behind us those of Nicosia. At half past twelve we crossed a mountain-stream, considerable in winter, though now almost diy: and at one stopt to dine at the village of Kakotopia. Except in the immediate vicinity of Nicosia, and of one or two villages which we had passed, the plain was utterly uncultivated, and overgrown with heath, brush-wood and long grass, though the land was of the richest nature and frequently of a reddish colour. Our read had been frequently either a sheet of rock or masses of stone fixed in the ground. At Kakotopia (translated, it means "an unlucky spot") we stopped in a mud cottage, whicli we left at half past three, after devouring a couple of fowls. Just as we set off we were attacked by a tornado, which covered ns with dust and thistles, and was so violent that wo found it impossible to face it but turned our backs to it, and even then conld hardly keep our seats : this lasted an hour and was attended with a very little rain. From Kakotopia we rode to the sea for three hours over a beautiful plain of the richest and best cultivated land 1 have seen in Cyprns, owing to there being a greater number of villages than usual collected together. It was laid out in continued fields of maize, corn and vines. At half past six we arrived by moonlight at a Creek convent on the banks of the sea, dedicated to SS. Sergias and Yaccha. It was very large, but consisted of a quadrangle of miserable low mud buildings. Tlie small church appeared Byzantine: on one side of it lay a large stone, with a Venetian inscription in Greek. It contained twenty or twenty-five monks, who could give us only accommodations much inferior to what we should find in an English stable; and this being one of their banyan-days it was with the greatest, difficulty we could induce them to kill a fowl for ns. However, we made the best of our situation, and contrived to sup and sleep tolerably. Hie villages we saw on our read to-day were lerolakos, Mannari, Thainia, Argatzi, Menikon, Zothia, Kakotopia, Nitzeta, Prassion, Morphon, Kazivera, Elea, Petra, and Sirleenkhori. October 19. Therm. 92'. At a quarter past six we mounted and set off. For one hour and a half we continued on the same plain along the sea-coast. It was everywhere rich and cultivated, abounding in corn, melons, some few vines, olives, mulberries and figs, which were growing close down to the sen. To our right we had the bay, and to our left the large Turkish village of Levka. In the bay were anchored three large boats, which came here for the facility of smnggling corn. We crossed a broad though dry bed of a mountain-stream, filled with the finest oleanders and eist us, from which the spot derives the name of the Xeropotamos, dry river. At eight o'clock we ascended the mountains, which showed ns by far the most beautiful scenery I have seen iu Cyprus. They were very high, sometimes of earth and sometimes of stone (which hitter had a red volcanick appearance), covered above with pines, oaks, caroba trees, all of the largest dimensions, except the oaks which were dwarf, and brushwood, and with the richest verdure. In the deep valley below ran a considerable mountain-stream, which was crowded with, and frequently hidden by, immense plane trees, oleanders, cist us and brushwood, among which latter were great quantities of 43fi EXCERPTA CYPRIA.

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