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GIOVANNI MARITI
Travels in the Island of Cyprus
page 124

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the cargo would be confiscated, as the Porte does not allow the export of food stuffs from its own territories to those of France and Italy, or to any other country not under its rule. Vessels however carry every year large quantities of grain to Leghorn, Genoa, Marseille and Malta. The licenses obtained from the several Governors are never issued for Christian countries, but for other ports in the Turkish dominions. The destination of the vessels is well known, but officials take the customary dues, and let them sail. In the same way the Ottoman men of war which meet a vessel charged with grain, which they know is bound to a European port, take a handful of sequins and let it go its way. For the commanders would gain nothing by taking it to Constantinople, where the vessel would suffer no loss beyond the confiscation of the cargo, which would go into the Imperial barns. The ambassadors of Christian Powers accredited to the Porte have now and then success-fully opposed these exactions, and obtained cash payments for cargoes so seized. Only a few years since, Mons. de Penklern, Internuncio of their Imperial Majesties, obtained restitution of the value of a cargo of wheat, loaded for Leghorn on a Tuscan polacca, and seized by a Turkish war vessel for the use of the Sultan. A merchant who proposes to ship grain from Cyprus should obtain through his consul a license from the Governor at Nicosia, which will cost if piastre for the mosa of three Florentine sacks. This payment is included in the tariff charges which I shall note below. The wheat grown in the eastern parts of Cyprus is of good quality, but does not keep and is consumed year by year in the island itself. The wheat of other districts is finer, heavier, and keeps better : the best of all comes from the district of Pafo and Fontana Amorosa, and this is exported to Europe. It would be well if we in Italy were better informed about this produce. Of late years the market of Leghorn has received several cargoes from Pafo and Fontana Amorosa which met with so bad a reception that merchants there would never 120 On the Commerce of the [CH.

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