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enly pretext which could plead its excuse, and their vengeance is downright atrocity.
« Alexandria was still ringing, at the time of my arrival at that city, with the noise of an assassination committed, a few years before, on the person of the representative of the French nation, in that port. A French hair-dresser was taking the diversion of shooting in the environs of the town; an Arab picked a quarrel with bim, which unfortunately terminated in his discharging his piece at the Arab, and killing him. This murder was presently noised abroad. The people took fire, and, in their transport, resolved to sacrifice every European they could lay hold of. Their fury was with no little difficulty appeased, by delivering up the murderer to them, whom they hanged in the public square; hut an Arab, the brother of him who was killed, though a witness of the execution, did not think himself sufficiently revenged; he bound himself by an oath to sacrifice the first Franc he should meet to the mancs of his brother.
“ All Europeans confined themselves to their homes for three whole months, in hope that the wrath of this man would subhide. At the expiration of that period, and on information sufficient to set their minds at reft, they believed it safe to go abroad. For eight days they appeared as usual, in the city and in the country, and no one had been in the least molested. The consul had not hitherto dared to shew himself : at length he thought that he too might take the air, without running any risk. He went to walk with a janisary of his guard on the bank of the canal. Unfortunately for him, the Arab who, with the sentiment of revenge carefully treasured up in his heart, went constantly armed with a determination to gratify it, happened to be in the same quarter. He approached the Frenchman, who was under no manner of apprehension, and daftardly as cruel, brought him down to the ground by a gunfhot fired through his back. The janisary, instead of taking vengeance on the assassin, or at least of affifting the man whom it was his duty to protect, fed off as fast as his heels could carry him, and the unfortunate consul died of the wound a few hours after. The, French merchants dispatched a fast failing boat to Constantinople, to demand justice. The Ottoman Porte fent officers with strict and severe orders on the subject ; but these orders, at first evaded, remained finally unexecuted.
The villain did not so much as quit the city, but shewed himself openly with impunity. The merchants were under the necessity of concealing their resentments for the sake of their own safety; and, beside the affront offered to the French nation by the unpunished assassination of her delegate, the national commerce had to regret the expenditure of considerable sums, fruitlessly laid out in demanding a just reparation.
“ Events of this kind, unhappily, were not sufficiently rare to ensure the tranquillity of those who were obliged to live in Egypt, and in some parts of Syria, where the people, beside their vicinity, have a considerable resemblance to those of Egypt. Toward the end of October, 1731, the Dutch drogman or interpreter at Aleppo, was walking for amusement with his consul. "The peafants of a village adjacent thought proper to accuse him of having occasioned the death of a young man who had drowned himself, and whose body they were dragging out of the water. An accusation so absurd was supported by the whole village. The cry for vengeance was universal
. They fent a deputation to the Pacha of Aleppo, demanding that the Dutchman might be given up to them. The governor refused. The villagers stirred up the populace of Aleppo, A formidable mob threatened to set fire to the city, and to massacre all the Francs, unless the drogman, who had Aed for refuge to the Pacha's palace, was delivered up to them. That officer, though perfectly convinced of the Dutchman's inno. cence, was obliged, in order to prevent the most dreadful out rages, to drder the ill-fated European to be strangled, and his body to be given to the mutineers, who hanged it up on a
“ A wide extent of sand and duft, an accumulation of rub: bilh, was an abode worthy of the colony of Alexandria, and every day they were labouring hard to increase the horror of it. Columns subverted and scattered about ; a few others fill upright, but isolated ; mutilated ftatues, capitals, entablatures, fragments of every fpecies overspread the ground with which it is surrounded. It is impossible to advance a step, without kicking, if I may use the expression, against some of those wrecks. It is the hideous theatre of deftruction the most hurrible. The foul is saddened, on contemplating those remains of grandeur and magnificence, and is roufed into indignation against the barbarians who dared to apply a sacrilegious hand
to monuments which time, the mott pitilefs of devourers, would have respected.
Pompey's column is thus particularly noticed with peculiar vanity ; it is indeed a wonderful superstructure, and it appears to have been the head-quarters whence BUON APARTE issued orders for the capture of Alexandria !
“ As you go out of the enclosure of the Arabs, by the gate of the fouth, the eye is ftruck with one of the most astonishing monuments which antiquity has transmirred to us. Pruud of not having funk under the wattes of time, nor under the more prompt and terrible attacks of superftitious ignorance, rears its majestic head, the grandeft column that ever existed. It is of the moft beautiful and the hardest granite, and is composed of three pieces, out of which have been cut the capital, the shaft and the pedeftal. 'I had not the means of measuring its height, and travellers who have gone before me are not perfectly agreed on this point. Savary assigns to it a height of a hundred and fourteen feet *, whereas Paul Lucas, who de. clares he had taken an accurate measurement of it, makes its height no more than ninety-four feet t. This last opinion was generally adopted by the Europeans of Alexandria. The height of the column was admitted there to be from ninetyfour to ninety-five feet of France. The pedestal is fifteen fect high; the shaft with the socle, seventy feet; finally, the capital, ten feet; in all, ninety-five feet. The mean diameter is feven feet nine inches. Admitting these proportions, the entire mass of the column may be estimated at fix thousand cubic feet. It is well known that the cubic foot of red Egyptian granite, weighs a hundred and eighty-five pounds. The weight of the whole column, therefore, is one million one hundred and ten thoufand pounds, eight ounces to the pound.
« However hard the fubitance of the column may be, it has not escaped the corroding tooth of time. The bottom of the fhaft is very much damaged on the eaft side, and it is very casy to separate, on the same side, thin lamina from the pedes
* Letters on Egypt, vol. i. p. 36,
tal. It has been already remarked, that the hieroglyphics of Cleopatra's needle were corroded on the face exposed to that point of the compass. It is most probably the effect of the wind blowing from the sea. Some have pretended, that on the opposite face, that to the west, a Greek inscription was discernible, when the sun bore upon it; but with all the attention I could employ, it was not in my power to perceive any thing of it.
« The ground on which the pillar is raised having given way, part of the pivot which supports it has been laid open. It is a block of fix feet only in the square: it bears the weight, as a centre, of a pedestal much larger than itself; which proves the exact perpendicularity of the whole. It too is granite, but of a species different from that of the colunin. The people of the country had built round the pivot, in the view of Itrengthening the pedestal. This piece of masonry, totally use. less, was formed of stones of various qualities, among which fragments of marble, detached from the ruins of some antique edifice, and sculptured with beautiful hieroglyphics, attracted notice. While some were exerting themselves to prevent the falling of the monument, others, the Bedouins, as I was told, endeavoured to bring it down, in the hope of finding treasure under its base when burst ro pieces. For this purpose they had employed the action of gunpowder; but very fortunately they had no great skill in the art of mining. The explosion only carried away a portion of the mason-work, so idly intended to be a prop to the pedestal.
6. Paul Lucas relates, that in 1754, a mountebank having got upon the capital with a facility which astonished every body, declared it was hollow a-top *. We have some years ago indications more positive on the subject. Some English sailors contrived to get upon the summit of the column, by means of a paper-kite, which assisted them in fixing a ladder of ropes: they found, as well as the man mentioned by Paul Lucas, a great round hollow in the middle of the capital, and moreover, a hole in each of the corners. It is therefore cer tain, this chapiter served as a base to some ftatue, the fragments of whichseem to beirrecoverably lost. Some friends of M.
* Journey of Paul Lucas, in 1714, vol. ii. p. 22.
Roboli, Roboli, who had been French interpreter at Alexandria, have affured me that he had discovered near the column, pieces of a itatue which, to judge from the fragments, must have been of a prodigious magnitude ; that he had them conveyed to the house occupied by the French, but that, notwithstanding the most diligent researches, not being able to procure the other pieces of it, he had ordered the first to be thrown into the sea, close by that fame house. They were thewn to me, but it was imposible for me to diftinguish any thing, for they are almost entirely buried under the land of the sea. I was farther in-, formed, that those fragments of a statue, were of the most beauciful porphyry.
" We have nothing beyond conjecture, more or less supported by evidence, respecting the Æra, and the motives which dictated the construction of the column of Alexandria. The name of Pompey's Column, by which it is generally designed, indicates the origin commonly ascribed to it. Cæsar, we are told, ordered it to be erected, to perpetuate the memory of the victory which he had gained over Pompey, in the celebrated bartle of Pharfalia. Relying on the testimony of an Arabian author, Savary pretends that it was a monument of the gratitude of the inhabitants of Alexandria to the Roman emperor, Alexander-Severus *. Finally, others ascribe the elevation of the Pillar to a king of Egypt, Ptolemeus-Euergetcs.
“ Mr. W. Montague, whom his extensive erudition and fingular adventures have raised to celebrity, had formed, during his long residence in the east, a new opinion on the same fubject. He maintained that the column was the work of Adrian, another Roman emperor, who had travelled in Egypt. But he could adduce no proof in fupport of this assertion : withing, nevertheless, to give currency to his idea, he was un. der the necesity, in the view of persuading others of the truth of what he had persuaded himself, to employ a little ingenious fraud. I have the fact from a witness of undoubted veracity. The fly Englishman had got one of his people to introduce a small coin of the emperor Adrian, in a spot agreed on, be. tween the ground on which this pillar refts, and its sous-base He afrerwards repaired to the place, attended by a numerous company, and, after affected researches, he dexterously un.
* Letters on Egypt, vol.i. p. 37,