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The entrance to the canal of the Hellespont, from the sea of Marmora, although broader than the Thracian Bosporus, has not the same degree of grandeur. Its sides are more upisorm, less bold, and are not so richly decorated. The oply picturesque appearauce is presented by the European and Asiatic castles, as the straits become narrower. Before coming in sight of these, the eye notices a few houses and windmills, belonging to the present village of Lamsaque, which are all that remains of the ancient Lampsacus. The wine of the place no longer retains its pristine celebrity.
We came to anchor about three miles above the castles. I went on shore, and walked to the town of Dardanelles. In my way, I observed the shafts of several pillars of granite; some of these had been placed upright in the earth, as posts, on which to fasten vessels; others were dispersed and neglected. In the recess of a small bay, before reaching the town, is the best situation for viewing the narrow part of the strait, where Xerxes is believed to have passed with his army; and here the two častles have a very striking appearance. Tournefort objects to the story of Leander's enterprise, reasoning on the impossibility of a man's swimmiog so great a distance as that which seperated Abydus from Seslus. The servant of the imperial consul at the Dardanelles performed this seat, more than once in a much wider part of the straits, passing from the Asiatic side to the European castle; whence, after resting himself a few minutes, he swam back again.
When we arrived, we found all the shops shut. The Turk. ish fleet bad passed the day before ; and the greatest terror prevailed among the inhabitants, who upon thase occasions are exposed to plunder from the promiscuous multitude of barbariaps, drained from the provinces of Anatolia to mau the fleet. It often happens that these men have never seen the sea, until they are sent on board. Whenever the fleet comes to anchor, they are permitted to go ashore, where they are guilty of the greatest disorders. The capudan pacha himself told me that it was in his power to bring them to order, by hanging ten or a dozen a day ; -“but then,” said he, “how am I to spare so many men ?"
The wine of Dardanelles is sent to Constantinople, to Syrmna, to Aleppo, and even to England. It will keep to a great age, and, if the vintage be favourable, is preferable to that of Tepedos. Both sorts are of a red colour. That of the Dardanelles, after it has been kept twenty or thirty years, loses its colour, but not its strength. It is made chiefly by Jews, and called, in Italian (the language spoken throughout the Levant,) Vino della Lege; because it is pretended, that the Jews, by their law, are prolíbited the adulteration of wine. Its price, when of a good quality, equals eight parâs the oke ; about twopence a bottle.
On the European side of the straits, precisely on the spot where it is believed Sestus was situated, and where it is laid down by D'Auville, are three tumuli. Concerning these a silly fable is related by the Turks, which affirms that they were formed by the straw, the chaff, and the corn, of a deryish, wionowing his grain. The largest is called Sest' Tepe. Sest, in Turkish, signifies an echo ; but there is no echo, either at the tomb, or near it; wheuce it is not too much to conclude that Sestus afforded the original etymology of this pame, and perhaps the site of it may be thus ascertained. Near it is a place called Akbash, where there are said to be ruins, and where a dervish resides, who has frequently brought medals and other antiquities, found there, to the Dardanelles. Farther up the straits, toward the sea of Marmora, at about the distance of three English miles from Akbash, and on the same side, are the remaios of a mole, having the remarkable appellation of Gaziler Eschielesy, the Pier or Strand of the Conquerors ; whether with allusion to the passage of the Getæ, who from Phrygia and Mysia, crossing the Hellespont, first peopled Thrace, Macedonia, and Greece ; or to the Persic invasion, many ages after; or to the conquests of the Turks themselves; cannot pow be determined. That this people have retained in their language the original interpretation of many ancient appellations, may be proved by various examples, in the names of rivers and places.
Having procured at the Dardanelles proper persons to attend * us as guides, during our interided expedition to the plain of Troy, and a four-oared boat to conduct us thither by day break on the following morning, we returned on board the corvette. I joformed the captain, as well as the crew, that it wonld not be possible for 118, cousistently with the plan we had io contemplation, to sail for the Mediterranean in less than a fortnight. Our ambassador had sent his cook on board, with money for the army, and had previously urged the impropriety of delaying the vessel duriog hier voyage; therefore, as all seemed vesirous to overtake the Turkish fleet, which we were informed had not passed Tenedos, we resolved to send an express by land to Constantinople, to ensure a passags, upon our veturn from Troas, in a small merchant vessel, belongiog to an Englishman of the name of Castle. This we had lest ladiog with stores for the troops destiued to Egypt. It had been, originally, nothing more than a bomb-boat, captured by Sir Sidney Smith from the French; yet the desire of gratifying our curiosity with the sight of the highly classical territory, then within our reach, subdued all our fears of venturing across the Mediterranean in this little beancod; and we resolved to dismiss the corvette, with all the capudan pacha's intended liberality, as soon as daylight should appear.
In the morning, therefore, we took leave of the crew, aod lauded again. Upon the shore we were met by messengers from the pacha of the Dardanelles, who desired to see us. Being conducted to his palace, and through an antechamber filled with guards, we entered an apartment in which we found him seated on a very superb divan. He placed me opposite to him; and the Russian consul, beeing ou his kuces by my side, acted as interpreter. The attendants io the mean time supplied us with coffee, conserves, and rich pipes of jasmine. The pacha was dressed in a robe of green embroidered satio. He told us he was going to Esky Stamboul ( Alexandria Troas,) and would take us with him in his boat, in order to entertain us there. Fearing the interruption this might occasion, we begged to be excused : upou this he added, that he had an estate in the recesses of Mount Ida, and begged we would visit him there. This we also declined, and afterward had reason to regret that we had done so; for his services would have materially assisted our researches in the country. We then had some further conversation, in which he mentioned the names of Englishmen whom he had seen, and expressed great desire to procure some Euglish pistols, for which he said he would give all the anti-quities in Troas. After this we retired. The pacha went on board his boat, and as we followed him in ours, the guns fired a salute from the castle.
The day was most serene; not a breath of wind was stirriog, nor was there a cloud to be seen in the sky. No spectacle could be more grand than the opening to the Egean Sea. The mountaivous Island of Inbros, backed by the loftier snow-clad summits of Samothrace, extended before the Hellespont, toward the northwest. Next, as we advanced, appeared Tenedos upon the west, and those small isles which form a group opposed to the Sigean promontory. Nothing, excepting the oars of our boat, ruffled the still surface of the water; no other sound was
heard. The distant islands of the Ægean appeared as if placed upon the surface of a vast mirror. In this manger we passed the Rhætean promontory upou our left, and beleld, upon the sloping side of it, the tumulus, considered, and with reason, as will presently appear, the tomb of Ajar. Coming opposite a sandy bay, which Pliny, speaking of that tomb, precisely alludes to as the naval station of the Greeks,* we beheld, at a distance upon the Sigean promontory, those other tumuli, which have been called the tombs of Achilles and Patroclus. Upon a sandbank, advanced into the Hellespont, and formed by the deposit of the principal river here disemibogned, which I shall for the present designate by its modern appellation of Mender, appeared the town of Kourn kalè.
A very sir.gular appearance takes place at the mouth of this river : as if it refused to mix with the broad and rapid current of the Hellespont, it exhibits an extensive circular line, bounding its pale and yellow water : this liue is so strongly traced, and the contrast of colour between the salt and the fresh water so striking, that at first I believed the difference to originate in the shallowness of the current, at the river's mouth, imperfectly concealing its sandy bottom; but, upon sounding, ihis was not the case. An appearąuce so remarka, ble, characterizing these waters, would not escape, an allu. sion at least, in the writings of a poet who was lavish io the epithets he bestowed upon the Scamander and the Hellespout. Ti has been reserved for the learning and ingenuity of Mr. Walpole, to show that the whole controversy, as far as it has been effected by the expression Isratus ENÄNSTlONTOS, is founded in misconstruction; and that instead of broad Hellespont, the true reading is 'salt Hellespont.'
Coming opposite to the bay, which has been considered as the nayal stalion used by the Greeks during the war of Troy,
* How exactly does this position of the Portus Achæorum coincide with the remark made by Pliny in the following passage : “ Ajace ibi sepulto xxx stad. intervallo a Sigeo, el ipso in statione classis sua." Plin. Hist. Nat. lib. v. p. 278. L. Bat. 1635.
+ “ It bas been objected, that Homer would not have applied the epithet a TÚS to the Hellespont. Commentators have anticipated the objection, and urged, that although the Hellespont, near Sestus apd Abydus, is not matùs, but only a mile in breasth, yet that in its opening toward the Ægean, at the embouchure of the Scawander, it is broad. IIxpi tàs expods 100 Exauá vopou, are the words of the Venetian scholiast. See also the Lexicon of Apollonius; and Eustathius, p. 432. But the objection, if it be one, should have been answered at once, by saying, that matùs 'El homo Tos is the Salt Hellespont.' TIratùs, in this sense, is used three times by Aristotle, in Meteor, lib. ii., and Hesychius gives the same meaning. It may be observed, thar Daram and Stephanus have pot mentioned it in their Dictionaries.”
Walpole's Ms. Journal.
and which is situated on the eastern side of the embouchure of the Mender, the eye of the spectator is attracted by an object predominatiog over every other, from the singularity of its form, as well
as the peculiarity of its situation, so admirably contrived to overlook that station, and all the low coast near the niouth of the river. It is a couical mound, ri. sing upon a line of elevated territory, which appears behind
the bay and the mouth of the river. It has therefore been 1 pointed out as the tomb of Æsyetes, and is now called Udjek
Tape. If I had never heard or read a single syllable concerning the war of Troy, or the works of Homer, it would have been impossible not to notice the remarkable appea rance presented by this tumulus; so peculiarly placed as a post of observation, commanding all approach to the harbour and the
I afterward observed, ibat it afforded a survey of all the Trojan plain ; and that, from whatsoever spot it was regarded, this cone, as a beacon, was the most conspicuous object in the view.
After these few observations, concluding this short chapter, the reader js, perhaps, better prepared for the inquiry which may now be introduced. Notwithstanding the numerous remarks which have appeared upon the subject, it is my wish to assure him, that our local knowledge of the country is still very imperfect; tint the survey carried on by travellers has always, unfortunately, been confined to the western side of the river; that my researches will add but little to his stock of information ; but that, while much remains to be done, it is
* “ The difficulty of disposing exactly the Grecian camp is very great. owing to the changes on the coast, and the accretion of soil mentioned by Strabo, which, however, the stream of the Hellespont will prevent being augmented. If, as Herodotus asserts, the country about Troy was once a bay of the sea, (lib. ii. c. 10.) the difficulties of determining the precise extent and form of coast are considerable. In examining the country at the embouchure of the Meander, where the soil has in. creased to the distance of six miles since the days of Strabo, I was struck with the difficulty of determining the direction of the coast, as it was to be seen in the days of Darius, and Alexander; in the time of Strabo, and Pliny; and the Emperor Manuel, who encamped there in 866. Yet this difficulty does not lead me to doubt the events that took place there and at Miletus, any more than I should doubt the encampment of the Greeks at Troy, because I could not arrange it in agreement with the present
“ The situation of the Grecian camp by a marsh, has been objected to. But what is the fact! Homer says, the illness and disease, which destroyed the Greeks, were inflicted by Apollo (the Sun). They were, without doubt, the same with the putrid exhalations which now arise from marshes on each side of the river; and which bring with them fevers to the present inhabitants of the coast, when the N. N. E. wind blows in summer, and the South in the beginning of autump. " It is to be regretted, that the Empress Eudocia is so concise in what she says a
the centure presse sal vir on the foundation stones of the city are not left;"' but, as adus in an expression from Gospels, ή έωρακυΐα μεμαρτύρηκεν, she was able probably to give some particulars which would have been non interesting. See Villoison Arec. Greec. tom. i.”
Walpole's Ms. Journal.
face of the coast.