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The Rhodes Island - Revue des Deux Mondes, Volume 5, 1844 - Ch Cottu
We had just arrived at Rhodes, for a golden shore by the rays of a beautiful sun. North, between palm trees and topped domes Turkish crescent, floated the flags of the consuls in the south stretched the city lost a whole among the cypress, date palms and dominated by a green hill. The frigate anchored at Pearl Tower which stands at the end of the pier. Soon a boat came off the ground, it took us two Europeans: one, Mr. Drovetti, ran the Consulate of France and the other, Mr. Gandon, was an officer of health. It asked where was the frigate to which the answer was made that the building left Smyrna he gave free circulation, and Mr. Drovetti offered to guide us through the city. An hour later, mounted in a boat, we sailed rapidly toward the pier.

The great port, square, closed side of the earth by high walls; pier, with a battery of guns, protects the side of the sea, the opening is defended by a tower surmounted by pinnacles and small watching a previously placed where the sentinel. Nothing more graceful, more slender and stronger however, that this construction, which merges with the rude Gothic elegance Saracen. This in turn reminded us a memory of chivalrous heroism: that is where, on Christmas Day 1522, when Rhodes capitulated, retired French twenty knights determined to die. The winner Pasha took possession of the palace of the Grand Master, the Muslim fleet covering the port, and religious escaped death waiting at the sea vessels were transported in Europe. Before their departure, they attended the final assault comes against the tower defending their intrepid companions. When night came, they saw the Turkish galleys silent slip near the shore; ladders were raised against these niches on which hung the banner in the shadow of the cross complaints, screams rang out, and then all was silent, and at daybreak, a ponytail at the end of a pike replaced the banner of Saint John. The Turks, who still remember vaguely seat, know that this isolated bastion them to take costly, so they have called the Tower of the Knights as one to keep in memory the monument several years of fighting. The entrance to the tower is heavily guarded, and the walls are whitewashed more frequently than other fortifications Muslims believe delude foreigners, and perhaps abused themselves, veiling under the whitewash injuries their buildings, they never repair.

Just landed, we did ask the governor for permission to visit the tower. A guard came to open the door, my companions rushed down the stairs, and the sound of our swords on the pavement seemed the sound impact of heavy iron swords of brave knights. The platform, it dominates the city, surrounded by moats where plants grow strong among Turkish balls arranged in pyramids. As long as we isolate ourselves and forget, it feels transported to one of our old cities of Europe warhead and round arches. There is the issue of our old mansions in these dark houses built of stone, with battlements at the top, pierced with narrow windows and loaded badges. Round or square towers rise from all sides are overcome some of the roof peak of the Middle Ages, but most, and the houses, end terrace, where the evening women gather to enjoy the beauty the Arabian Nights. The pier is lined with cafes beds Outdoor wood on which the Turks on the one hand, the Greeks on the other, are part of the extended day. Before the eternal smoking on gently agitated waters of the harbor, swaying light of the Levant, laden with fruit, vegetables and melons, the sailors unload and sell on the platform. Sailors crowd around veiled women, clad in robes of all colors, feet in boots morocco; negroes to face crushed, his head covered with a rag scarlet children almost naked Jews the faded dresses, slipping into the crowd without touching person Greeks cheeky chatty at the mine, soldiers ugly uniform impeded in the modern e rich Turks who spend long coats covered seriously sleeves drooping.

We left the fort, eager to go through the old city we had to contemplate the crow flies. The city gate opens between two towers at the end of the pier when we passed under the arch, the sentries, sitting in the shade, had placed their rifles between the wall and quietly caressed their feet with your hands. The first street you encounter this side is the Knights: This name is probably one of those brands that tradition places on the ruins because the street where all the travelers speak in preference to others, where they see that a cluster of houses Turkish or Jewish, is, like the city itself, a succession of medieval houses, low-input, surmounted by the escutcheons most arms of France. I saw there the arms that I had so sadly trampled in Malta in Saint-Jean, where they were worn by the friction of shoes. At Rhodes, carved in white marble and held by the charming sky met the Parthenon and statues of Greece, these badges stand intact in all the pride of currencies on the black walls of buildings.

Knights Street is hilly, desert, filled with herbs and stones rolling and our footsteps echoed off the tiles as a vault. Here and there opens a stone arch serves as an entrance to another dark street, narrow, deep, seen snake in the shade with its sculptured portals and badges. No noise was heard. A few barred windows were decorated with flowers, our shouts, our surprises, showed the heads of women or children, small hands gently parted plants intertwined with bars, most girls at the sight of foreign uniforms , remained a moment surprised, mouth half open, showing their delighted eyes, black hair responsible for their gold sequins, and then meet one of our bold looks, they returned in the foliage like birds. Old women brought their veil on the face of the Turks, current lords of these manors French, left quietly after falling jealousies recognized because of the noise that disturbed the eternal silence of the cloister.

These houses resemble fortresses, everything is black and square from the base to the summit. Turrets, a sign of nobility among the people of nobles, stood at the corners of a few houses loopholes defend the doors, open battlements under decks. When I plunged into the interior eye, I saw a damp courtyard, paved with large slabs disjoint between which the grass grew thick and straight, as if for years, perhaps since the death or escape of the master had no stride.

During one of these struck me: we stayed to examine a gold badge by the French centuries as all the marbles this beautiful land of ruins, the arms were azure ten heavy gold, the proud motto of the house of Rieux: A very smooth Rieux! enclosed the shield; extended below the gate, adorned with arabesques carved in granite. I pushed the planks gave way, and immediately a fresh wind blew me in the face. I entered the courtyard, a fig tree was blocking the entrance venerable moss velvet adorned the walls, windows without shutters opened here and there across the top of the shield shone hangers. Then I entered a large room where the sun was breaking through the embrasures, a dust of atoms whirling in its rays, perennials climbed along the carved beams, revealed no trace of the passage of man, and this house, formerly living penance under a large master austere pleasures asylum perhaps in a more forgiving head, was silent as a tomb crest seemed to live alone and wait. This is the inside of most houses in the Street of the Knights. Facades, well preserved, have all their arms, among which I recognized the shield of Beaumanoir, azure eleven silver billets, with the motto: I love who loves me and that other more charming again: What will I do it! I later found to be that of Salvaing Dauphiné.

Leaving these ruins, I found myself suddenly face to face with a dervish. He wore a gray dress, her bare feet dirty slippers hatched his head disappeared in a felt like a sugar loaf, his hands dangling a string in red grapes that was slipping through his fingers by hobby and not for pray as Christians do: he went away without seeing me, and a drunken man. I found my companions in the church of St. John, who sells well, the beauty and richness, its sister Malta. However, this poor building without sculptures, tombs without speaking of the glory, produces an impression on the soul stronger than the beautiful basilica also desecrated by conquest. When the knights established in Malta had repulsed the last effort of the hatred of the Turks, they did come from Italy painters and architects to build a magnificent church, they had nothing to fear, and the time was theirs. At Rhodes, like the Jews after the servitude, the monks took the trowel in one hand and a sword in the other, but the Sabbath which would have been a temple to the Lord never came to the hospital. He always had to run to the walls, so they could not raise a building somewhat similar shape and architecture of their own homes. Nothing stands out as wide and high façade pierced by a large window where the wind rushes in winter nights. The inside is blank. The church seems abandoned, even by the Turks. At the sound of our footsteps, blue pigeons flew through the broken windows. Some verses of the Qur’an wind on the walls, and the platform of mufti came around with mats spread in the chorus, where believers kneel facing east. Ground stones appear to have been raised, no doubt Muslims have sought the riches they believed buried with the bodies of knights any time the Turks thought the graves of Christian monks concealed treasures they obtained by magic. Their stories, which say so faithfully even the morals of the people and credulous child, talk incessantly of large clusters of gold and precious stones buried in the tombs by witches and guarded by hideous spirits. The Knights of St. John, like their brethren of the Temple, appearing sometimes with the infidels spear horsemen mercilessly, sometimes in the priest’s garments, were done in the spirit of the Saracens curiosity and superstitious idea that occult power being attached to the evil spirits. Also, not only to Rhodes, but before Jerusalem, Arab conquerors they searched the tombs of the Templars and Hospitallers, they threw the ashes into the wind.

October 30, 1522, during the siege, two months before taking place in the meantime one of these off the Turks left out to Christians, a terrible scene took place in this place, now so deserted . Columns and walls were hung with black, and the grand master, wounded, sat on his throne, and the dignitaries of the order surrounded Villiers de l’Ile-Adam. All stood sword in hand stalls overcome their badge and their banner, several empty seats showed the number of knights killed on the walls, a black cloth covered the stall wearing the insignia of the Grand Chancellery of order. The crest of the hospital was entitled to sit on the seat was overthrown in a sign of infamy, and his banner trailed on the ground. All religious, mostly wounded, crowded in the aisle, all eyes turned to the pale figure of a knight kneeling near a beer open. This knight in full armor, his head shaved and his arms tied behind his back before him on cushions were the insignia of his dignity, further lay golden spurs broken and a broken sword. The negro slave, torturer of the convicts stood beside this man yatagan on the shoulder. A bell rang, and the Grand Chaplain, dropping his sword on the altar, the funeral began and immediately the brothers sang mournful songs. After the Gospel, when the priest had discovered the cup and poured water and wine, the Grand Master walked towards the one on which all eyes were directed, and said: - André Amaral; pillar language of Castile (1), chancellor of St. John of Jerusalem, before God, with whom you precede us in a moment, you acknowledge you guilty of felony and treason against your brothers in Rhodes?

The wretch trembled in the voice that asked, he seemed to fight a few moments, and then bending the front:

- I’m innocent, he stammered, and these words echoing in the silence, were heard by all. A second knock sounded armor under the arches.

- Admiral, took Ile-Adam, on leaving the church, you will be led to the door of the East, where, after that you will be degraded, you will hand severed and beheaded as traitors. Before he died, Andrew, do you dare to join me to receive the body of our Lord Jesus Christ?

All heads leaned to hear the response of condemned it rose, a ray of hope lit up his face, but suddenly thunderstruck at the sight of the holy chalice, he fell on the pavement. - What therefore God judge you, and that you be merciful! murmured the Grand Master. - Amen! replied the knight. The service continued. When the chaplain had given his blessing, the slave took up the chancellor, a herald hung the shield to a pile of Amaral point upwards. André then sought a friend in the crowd, perhaps an accomplice, but he saw only the faces of warriors inflexible. Soon after he ascended the Street of the Knights we have tried to describe, passed his house and saw his arms covered with crape. Arrived on the ramparts, the herald took off his armor, showed it to the people shouting: This is the armor of the traitor and felon Amaral! And he broke a sledgehammer, then stripped the knight of his shorts, his armbands off all his clothes, and he who had sold his brothers for the smile of the Prophet’s daughter, dressed in the cloak of a slave rower, mounted the scaffold, where the negro, after he had cut his hand, cut off his head, which was displayed on a pike at the sight of infidels.

The ruins of the palace of the grand masters are at the top of the Street of the Knights, near the fortifications. This castle, which once dominated the city, the sea and the countryside, is a heap of rubble stand where the middle of walls flanked by towers with debris clog the courts and halls, galleries remnants , arcades ivy that hugs you and further maintains, provide shelter to birds escaping sad crying and look deep into their dark lairs when the traveler is away.

Leaving the ruins, we followed a dark alley leading to the Turkish quarter, and arrived first on a square whose one side is bordered by a heavy building, which relate old memories. This building was one of those inns where the Religious of the same language in the early days of the order, came to eat together. Later, when great lords were engaged in order, when the hospital became fearless warriors, preferred to slay the infidels treat the wounded in hospitals, old discipline relaxed, and hostels were abandoned to poor knights, while their brothers lived in wealthier homes. Many hostels are on different places of Rhodes once they were eight in number, and for the eight languages ​​that made this order, often compared by historians of the Crusades in a new chandelier with eight branches burning before the Lord.

The officer of health soon came to join us, he wanted us in the Turkish district. Mr. Gandon is one of those French found scattered in all corners of the globe, and carefully preserve the gaiety of the old country. He obtained Reschid Pasha, of which he was secretary, a place in the health service that the door was created on the request of the European powers. This new institution was not established in the Levant without strong opposition, and the couch itself has never understood the need. Guard against the plague, predict what will happen to happy or sad, is positively contrary to the dogma of fatalism that allows the Mohammedan wait events with a profound equanimity. As most Turks are convinced that they seek to preserve bad fumes blowing according to the will of God, it is tempting heaven, and will steal the fruit of the tree of life and death. The health service therefore offers a career in the East most precarious, and already Mr. Gandon complained of having seen his salary cut in half by the party fanatic Mahmoud which has so long been forced to obey. The party then intrigued to remove the quarantine, he saw a continuation of this institution system reform and Christian imitations that the sultan had adopted against the wishes of most of the empire. The uniform of the troops, new exercises that soldiers are forced, forgetting the ancient traditions of the seraglio, all attempts to finally Mahmoud enter this nation still ideas of order and administration were viewed by religious minds in Turkey as the ruin of Muslim beliefs. Probably fight the unfortunate sultan in the fatal circle the mind Mohammedan traced around Europe inspired him strong sympathies: these tests too flattered the universal greeting that you do not should present in the most brilliant aspect of the guesswork the barbarian, but hopes vanish as soon as we spent a few days in the middle of the patriarchal tribe, and we saw lazy, contemptuous work in their cities, genuine tents planted in the sea . It can then help doubting that modern civilization never dissipates fatal torpor that the earth and the sky flowers softest always puts on Turkey. If we except the upper classes, the Osmanli saw nothing; excited by heat, he eats little, pure water, some fresh vegetables, fruits, pastries, boiled mutton between piles days festive enough for its needs, a carpet lying on the ground under a tree near a source, he smokes his pipe slowly, coffee prepared on a stone, the sky it looks and where her soul is lost at her feet beautiful sea he believes to be the barrier placed by God to separate believers from unbelievers, prayer three times a day, the firm determination to go to Mecca before dying, sleep, or these talks Oriental mind plunging into the world of pleasures and houris: this still life of Turkish life and this change does not? He sees the empire crumbles and he bowed his head: perhaps the supreme hour will he one of those terrible awakening that make a people sacrifice themselves in a final battle, or, defeated in advance, not even knowing his future, he will submit without a murmur to the command of Allah, the father Sellera his asses and camels, small children in their arms veiled women place themselves on packsaddles travel and the great caravan, taking the desert road, soon be lost in these solitudes unknown which came the Arab nations, and where they fit as to revive when they are exhausted.

We left the city by the East gate, near which Amaral was beheaded. Soon we saw develop in the countryside thousands of straight and flat stones, some loaded with verses from the Koran and a crudely carved turban. There have been hastily buried the 104-20000 men claimed the conquest of Rhodes Soliman. Among the graves that surround the city, pressed against each other, small rounded domes in the shade of a clump of plane trees, there lie the heads near their Janissaries. Cactus with pink flowers, mulberry wild grow under the protective sheets of these beautiful trees. From all sides, along ditches, the eye sees flee to the horizon funeral this army, which still appears to threaten the walls crossed by the balls, where shines distances the shield of St. John. Based on the parapets huge bronze mortars and cannons with large mouths; swabs, rammers, are pressed against the parts. Large birds of prey soar on the turrets, donkeys graze freely in the moat, and the floor is covered with dust burning the breeze carries the ashes over a yawning tomb during the night by hungry dogs. Never crowded like leaders and soldiers together pell-mell and had hit my eyes. Battlefields that I had traveled previously wore cheerful harvest or green meadows, but there around the city, nothing has changed: the sea front which brought them to shore, they are extended to the place where they fought, the land has not been excavated by the plow, and when, according to Muslim belief, Asrael, the angel of death, review, in the nights of storm, the dreary battalions each is at his post by the same ramparts still standing.

These early races were increases our curiosity. Acceptâmes we also eagerly Drovetti’s offer, which we proposed to go in the Jewish Quarter to visit a wealthy Israelite he knew. After following a trail that turned around the tombs, we went into the city through a new door that defends the body-of-custody. The soldiers had their rifles hanging on the rack and took a nap. Once we were in the street, all the children of Israel came down upon us, holding out his hand girls smiled at us near old matrons who spun their distaff before the houses of the great young men, bare legs, dressed in a brown cloth fastened by a belt which passed in the handle of a metal inkwell, swelled our procession, who came in the midst of continual genuflections men and women cries of surprise.

Mr. Drovetti had dispatched a little lame post, which appeared soon followed by a nice old man with a white beard. The Israelite was covered with a rich coat, and wore a black turban. Her son walked behind him. He walked up to the commander of the frigate and bowed, or rather adored, bending his head and putting his hand to his heart and on his lips. The merchant then made us go through several streets whose houses, although similar to those of the Street of the Knights, were distinguished by a profusion of flowers that adorned the windows, terraces, and gave them a festive look. Badges were also more rare, and in some places the modern buildings were sitting on old foundations.

At the door of his home, away from the master’s hand the crowd, who wanted to introduce after us, and let go her parents, who took off their slippers and followed us in a beautiful pillared hall antiques. Near windows glazed wooden trellis was a long ramp carved dais, covered with Persian carpets and silk mattress. Mr. Drovetti, who seemed to know every corner of the house, opened a cabinet where the ebony rare Hebrew manuscripts were stored. At the same time the son of the old man drew a large chest of cedar linen sails embroidered with gold, scarves, silk tunics in bright colors, which gave off a scent of jasmine and rose: soon the room was only a bazaar precious fabrics. After making us look at these wonderful fabrics, took us walking in a gallery overlooking a garden, an arbor lay thick on all sides by beams its branches laden with wet leaves and drooping clusters. The master gave the commander sit on a sofa, while small children waved us laughing place ourselves in the oriental manner, on the tiles of red silk.

Suddenly moved into the house of the rich Jew, seeing as turbans, furs, pillows and flowers, I remembered the feudal towers, mansions around me a moment before, and the French city of the Middle Ages I read Gothic currency on noble badges, I lent an ear to the conversation, and I heard name Constantinople, Taurus, Cyprus, Mount Carmel, Jerusalem, all these countries are talking constantly Thousand and One Nights, and I could, so to speak, see this gallery where I sat Pasha and strong at my ease. So I asked in a whisper if I was not dreaming, and if, as porters good God-fearing but loving wine, some genius I had not moved from the shores of Brittany in one of these booths Arab whose description m ’enchanted past.

Suddenly a door opened, and three girls appeared: one was fruit in a basket surrounded by foliage, other pastries on a white cloth, and the third a silver platter engraved loaded jams , liquors and glasses of water. They approached us, and each, after a timid salvation, we presented refreshments. The oldest of these charming creatures was not twenty years they were wearing a tight dress striped silk and gold lace on the front of the throat, above the tunic, a cloak with wide sleeves raised up at elbow down near the hips, their long black hair fell in braids dotted with gold glitter, and their feet were naked white skates wooden high heels.

When the youngest of these lovely fairies came to me and leaned her slender body to show me the set, I sat the spoon between her lips, broken before the fresh face of Rachel who was dreaming of all loves the Bible. The nice Jewish became as red as a pomegranate, she smiled and let me see small white teeth, his eyes black velvet, lined with long eyelashes, launched as a flame. Finally seeing that I did not move, the pretty girl threw her head aside, and uttered aloud a few words in a foreign language. The old, women, all Israel finally burst into a laugh, I almost choked, but by placing the spoon on the plate, I asked under the eyes that had charmed me: this look was no anger , we do not read that chastity and innocence. The merchant’s son served us coffee and then the long pipes of cherry wood and jasmine amber pieces, the girls remained in the vineyard near their mother men vis-à-vis us, surrounding the father.

As the conversation continued through Mr. Gandon, M. Drovetti gave me details about Jews, these outcasts of the East which are further reduced to the state of abjection in which we are legends ancient Christian society. Jews are numerous in Rhodes, where, as in all Turkish cities, they live in a separate quarter which they can not cross the walls after sunset, and all merchants are doing business with an insatiable greed, since the owner and the master of vessels of one hundred camels to the seller of perfumes damaged. They come and go in the countryside, on the dock, in the bazaars, never get tired and go to Christian or Muslim all kinds of services. A building he dropped anchor, we see immediately climb the ladder of long faces gaunt, their heads covered with a rag as a turban: they are Jews, and they bow before the officers the sailors and mosses; every traveler they offer very low it may be desired. Want antiques they draw their pockets broken statues, cameos, medals do you want stuffs? they raise and deploy a safe black fabric with gold and silver you love perfume? they lift a lid secrecy under which crowd bottles of essences, pastilles, pieces of amber for the lips of women you looking for diamonds? they know the jeweler, you should Provisions table? they agree with the cook and are launderers, shoemakers: ask for the impossible, you get it. Ever, on one of those white faces like an old coin, you will see the look blush of shame; abuse, violence, everything goes without a trace, the Jew bows his head under his arm that rises and returns like the dog to his master bedroom. Ever the Israelites rebelled in the enclosure walls, where they often outnumber the Turks, which forbid Christians to live in the strongholds, but leave the Jew sleep their feet. Also, despite the universal condemnation that overwhelms, despite the scorn that follows him everywhere and that Christians, Mohammedans, think themselves polluted by his touch, despite yatagan hanging on his neck hail, the Jew is spreading throughout the East; true to his faith insulted, he avenges the insults which it is subjected by rejecting with disdain all these cults born yesterday that men without mission from the holy books dictated by God himself his prophet on the tops Blasted Sinai.

In Rhodes, the Jews are traffic wines: they also sell sponge divers that found in large quantities on the coast, but there are not confined their speculations, and by means of exchange, brokerage, smuggling, they throughout the Levant are a huge invisible trade. These merchants pellets and slippers lurking in bazaars, or sit on a bad corner of a carpet shop, have fortunes that fines and forfeitures can not dry up. The Greeks, who also operate the East can not, regardless of their activity, their address and their love of gain, to fight against the Jews, who seem like a magnet, attracting them to metal. Greek is talkative, he gets discouraged easily and hassle as a para for a bag of dollars, the Jew gets into the business as the water in the rocks, with patience, quietly dull, except major traders, who are too well known of the Turks, can hope to deceive the Israelites hide all their riches in rags, they have a miserable public shop whose objects spread worth just a few gourds, but that a European arises, immediately stands a pale old man in the shadow of the black reduced, seemed asleep. It shows tirelessly all goods, and the traveler, finding nothing to her liking, withdraws, the Jew stops by the arm, closes his eyes and raises a finger in the air as if to say: Hush , shut up! A silent man out of a dark cave and just sit in place of the old. It leads you, leads you through dark alleys and passages, far from the shopping district. Arriving at a poor house, the Jew strikes in a manner agreed, we slide a window carefully, the door opens, you’re in a dark room and low in front of a table laden with instruments of steel, lots of money, gold rings, small ingots brilliant in glasses, in a corner near coals are pans, stoves coarse guide leaves you to guard the child opened the door and he soon returned, and presents your dazzled eyes all these wonderful gems that you place in a dream on the front of sultanas. Where does this sleazy old man whose moves as hidden wealth? Everyone ignores the city. Our conversation was interrupted by the rustle of a small piece of wood on the strings of a mandolin. A merchant’s son, squatting on his heels, playing the prelude to a wild air seemed full of harmony when her younger sister, her hands crossed on her breast, had begun to sing in a soft voice of unknown words. Was it a prayer, it was one of those beautiful songs, memories of captivity? I do not know, but either of mind or regret missing the homeland, never more melancholy accents and I had not spoken of exile and vague pain. When the last note had sounded, my enthusiasm translated into applause so loud, they intimidated the beautiful singer, who disappeared immediately. We then left the Israelite, who asked permission to visit the frigate he went there the next day with a large supply of goods and the exchange of our comrades paid much hospitality we received.

The day ended: it was time to retire, if we did not stay in the city, the gates close at sunset. In directing us to the haste of the direction of the country where live near the sea consuls in Europe, I noticed, buried in the sand streets, huge stone balls, some broken, others intact soil was littered. Where do these bou1ets? Is it the projectiles on the town? It is very probable. Long before the great siege of Rhodes, the Turks had a formidable artillery, and in their wars against the famous Scanderbeg we see huge use guns. They still retain the Dardanelles, the castle Pouillerie to that of Smyrna, and many naval officers were introduced easily into the depths of bronze for making more noise than harm. But why are these balls they remained in the same place where more than three hundred years stopped their last jump? Is this a new proof debt vanity Eastern delights to leave long as witnesses of his victory sections of walls destroyed and the wind dried skulls on black balance niches seraglio? Would it not rather an effect of this beautiful Turkish indolence which prevents change anything to the sites becomes master? This last hypothesis could be fairer, because we can not too often repeat, all remained standing at Rhodes since the day the Grand Master, with his brothers, left the island, Turkish has nothing torn, nothing high, he came to sit on his mat with his pipe he smoked for centuries, and he will smoke impassive on the ruins of the world.

We left the city by a door which overlooks the harbor, a massive round tower defending the entrance. It was then that the Colossus of Rhodes returned to us in memory: Mr. Drovetti assured us that this wonder of the world should be in the major port between two bastions he showed us. This opinion would satisfy any of us, and the tradition has nothing left some in this regard, we remained convinced that all the giant had been high on the rocks, very close to each other, which obstruct the entry the second basin. The ancient vessels, passing, say, between the legs of the statue should be of very small dimensions. Most likely the first sacolève Greek and Venetian galleys, narrow, light, with the sharp tip and sail easily picked up, give us the true picture, vessels of antiquity. Lately, Pompeii, examining the bas-reliefs of the tomb, on which this touching inscription reads: Servilia amico animoe I saw carved allegory which shows death as the quiet port where it rests after crossing life. It was a ship drops anchor near the shore, the sail was furled, and the sailors pressed: this boat had a striking resemblance to the sacolève of the Archipelago. It is therefore quite natural to bring triremes to modest proportions buildings with frescoes and sculptures of Rome we offer the model.

Mr. Drovetti, leading us home, we made along the edge of white sand which forms the end of the island to the east. This language barren land rises a thick clump of palm trees that cover the grave of a revered santon. Near the Muslim holy are housed the tombs of the Pashas door once exiled to Rhodes when she did not ask their head. A little later the district begins franc, inhabited by a few families of European origin, consuls, sick of scales that come breathe the purest air of all the Levant, and finally the Greeks sailors, innkeepers, population changing and always moving. Other Greeks spread throughout the island, cultivate their land farm out the Turks and Jews. A firman of the Grand Signior forbade Christians the right to buy properties in the empire Christians sometimes evade this defense by buying their women, considered rayas or slaves, they want to acquire the property. It is through this scheme that the Franks have come to Turkey country houses. The Jew, watched by the Turks as a pet is free from that law, which was renewed recently by the couch. This measure appears first wild and impolitic, since it prevents wealthy foreigners to settle in abandoned fields they would revive, however, that this is the natural consequence of depopulation and misery where deep dives all the provinces of the empire. Most Turks want to sell their land for three and four leagues in extent they do not know and can not grow: that Christians get the freedom to acquire, and smoothly, without changes, the surface of this beautiful country will transformed the young and active blood flow into Europe veins that paralyzed, waiting for the squint up the finger of God, but then disappear as the Muslim population buried in the Christian invasion.

The Greeks of Rhodes, like all those in Turkey, there are very gentle, and yet be memories of their former glory, or rather natural turbulence, the islands support with impatience the dominion of the Sultan. They placed their hope in the kingdom of Greece, without thinking that this freedom they immediately call chargerait heavy taxes, service land and sea, and deprive them the peace they enjoy under Turkish rule. In God forbid that we condemn the Greeks Orient feeling of independence, if it is the exciting to conquer or to perish like their brothers Hydra and Missolonghi, and if accomplished their deliverance, they not complain about the sacrifices she must lead! However, when we see these happy slaves, fickle, greedy, undisciplined, enemies of all that hurts their habits, incapable of affection and devotion sustainable constantly comparing the past to the present day, one can not help fear that once free, too, in the desert, do not regret the fruits of the fertile plains of Egypt.

It is in the area inhabited by the Greeks in the Eastern cities that are taverns, whose rooms are often bloodied by murder, suites brawls and drunkenness. This is also just before the Turkish police, represented by a large cadi who smokes, sitting in a corner and surrounded by some Albanians ragged. Near the sea in the evening strolling the beautiful Greek Ionian islands and voluptuous who sent in Athens for which these courtesans Pericles wept before the Areopagus. Many canoes, which totaled songs and guitar chords, drifting on the waves asleep dances form on the beach, is tumultuous, love, excitement, while the dogs howl in the Turkish quarter, until buried in the deepest silence.

Night came, it was back on board leaving us, Mr. Gandon proposed for the next race at the old Rhodes, remains of an ancient city, he says, the heyday of Greece. These ruins are situated four leagues in the interior of the island. Mr. Gandon advised us to take straw hats, and we bring a small bottle for the trip. At daybreak his house was besieged, all shouting and gesticulating Greek population in the street, mule drivers fought for wages; servants placed mats on the packs frames and finally, by dint of promises and threats , order is restored, everyone climbed on his horse, and our caravan left the town, preceded by guides who showed the way.

We had just engaging in a rough path that turned the mountainside almost hanging over the sea, when a dog jumped on me and I sanglai him a boost. Demonio! behind me shouted in a stentorian voice, I turned and saw a fat monk dressed in gray pants wide cap head wearing a three-cornered hat, a carnivorous on the shoulder, a powder flask under the left arm, the bag in his past lead rope belt, and a duck in hand.

- Per Bacco! I cried, where are you, my father, so handsome crew? Reverend put his rifle, winked and smiled at me. I presented my gourd monk, who took it calmly, and gave me a moment later, empty and neck overthrown; Then he gave me his blessing, whistled to his dog, and disappeared into the mountains. - What is a good religion? I asked Mr. Gandon. - That is, he replied, an Italian monk Rhodes established long ago. Another brother and take care of a small Catholic chapel where, at the time of the great feasts, an Austrian priest neighboring islands comes to celebrate mass. Both religious poor as Job, living on the charity of Christians and hunting brother Paolo, who lurks in the morning in the bushes, he is known everywhere, each face him good, happy and filled the vast pockets of his pants. - You do not have priests residing at Rhodes? No, they just happen, sometimes one, sometimes the other, they baptize, they confess, give communion, and then they leave.

These words made me sad to make a return to the past. Formerly, under the reign of Louis XIV, France was the queen of Christian nations in the East, all the islands were French priests. The revolution has swept everything. Vincentians now rebuild our ancient monasteries, but other powers compete today religious influence in France, which includes a little late how the action of clergy could be useful in the East. Not to mention England or Russia, whose insatiable ambition hides little, Austria, more cunning, working behind the scenes to gather around her various Catholic communions of the East. She continues her work silently without parade, such as France, the lesser good, without being hampered by superficial minds who profess a systematic distrust against religion. Austria is too clever to try a Roman propaganda among Greeks whose obstinate disregard for the Latins it is known, it simply sends the islands and Asia priests generously supported it. The poor French ecclesiastics are instead too often forgotten. We seek, it is true, to remedy this unfortunate situation, but there is still much to be done to revive the ancient Levant in the French tradition. For right or wrong, our country is now regarded by the Christian populations of the East as the most power devoid of religious sentiments. This spirit of irreligion and political hype that we blame is the rock whence often fail propaganda of healthy French ideas abroad, and this is still the case that holds peoples also brought to follow the momentum of our civilization. Other European states are not afraid to make fools proclaiming themselves the defenders of their faith, and they enter in the road that France would not have left. The Russians called them schismatic Greeks, Catholic Austria rallies Catholics scattered England finally just sent a bishop and Protestant missionaries in Jerusalem. No there not there for us an example and a lesson?

We followed a path painful practiced between huge boulders hanging over our heads before we whitened the sea still in charge of the morning mists, and soon the vivid hues of dawn came up in the sky and dispelled the mist came out of the Sporades waves like nests of greenery, and the channel Samos drew a glittering barrier between Nycère and the coast of Asia. The valleys of Rhodes, previously lost in gloomy darkness, opened to light and showed their depths, their twists and their forests. Ruins appeared off the capes emaciated, old feudal towers surrounded by palm trees crowned the heights, and when we reached the summit of the mountain, a splendid sun shone this beautiful landscape.

The doctor of the frigate, which examined the rocks for some time scattered around him, we then noted that these stones were a pile of seashells embedded in sand. None of us tried to explain this to the expeditious way of Voltaire, who, before the passage of clear evidence of water on the peaks of the Auvergne, ensures that thousands of pilgrims met on the heights, where they left their shells. Everyone went to the testimony of eye and touch, and confessed that the sea had to cover the mountain in one of these cataclysms traditions of all peoples are remembered. During the terrible convulsions which preceded the complete formation of the world, the fire shut up in his heart sought violently issues. In some places, it opened wide vomitoires: Also, is that the resistance was more intense, or that the fire had less energy, the earth did that rise in the mountains, but there are places where the struggle was more terrible, where the soil is cracked and torn As fun. Thus, in the Greek archipelago, separated only by narrow channels of large islands. The Mediterranean must be the huge crater of a volcano that occasionally still forces to launch some rocks, like Delos and sisters in antiquity and today this island came a morning sea Sicily, disappeared one night, and was found by the probe in four fathoms water. Anyway, that Rhodes has sprung a shot trident, or, according to Christian belief, she was overwhelmed as the rest of the world in the deluge, there is no doubt that at one time the remote waves rolled over the rocks of the island. When the mule’s hoof sounds on these training blocks so bizarre, between the gorges of this terrible path is suspended over the abyss, you can not without a shudder to look up these rocky masses that seem about to crumble at the slightest touch . As the traveler breathes he comfortable when leaning over his horse’s ears, it descends to the plain flowers that lies before him as a promised land.

A gallop on the beach led us in a valley which preserves the remains of an ancient road laid down by the knights. After half an hour of walking, we saw dawn through the trees turrets of a feudal manor, with its mutilated badge at the gate. A Turkish lord, lived alone in the dilapidated castle, where he showed us the rooms entirely unfurnished. On the floor rotten dried onions, pumpkins and cucumbers, the man invited the visitors to taste. Two bad coats lying in a corner he used to bed. When we stopped in front of some sculptures, Turkish approached immediately, and the covering of the hand, he raised his head, closed his eyes and was slowly clicked his tongue, Supreme pantomime through which all Muslim extricates in difficult occasions.

After drinking a little water and smoked the pipe of hospitality, we left this poor lonely to continue our journey through a fertile country, with palm trees and date palms. Former mansions stood in all directions, most seemed abandoned around, the plain was covered with myrtle, laurel and olive trees entwined like snakes. Other castles, inhabited by Franks or Greek families presented themselves surrounded by large vineyards in the shade where children were playing. The road wound between two rows of thorns wild fig trees and cactus water murmuring in aqueducts and money poured in layers in places where the channel was broken. Now in the dried bed of a stream we had to clear a path between the oleanders, sometimes small fields, which engulfed broods of birds looters us back near the sea, then the path is suddenly plunged in the interior of the woods, flowers and richer nature. If the appearance of the city I was surprised, if this great Gothic ruin shady palm trees Syria under a blue sky in the middle of the Archipelago, was presented to my mind mixing memories of the Middle Ages and the smiling Greek mythology, our excursion into the land seemed achieving magical songs of Ariosto, who places his castles on enchanted shores.

Traveler must be exiled from his country, to understand the melancholy charm that seizes the soul, when, under a foreign sky before an unknown vegetation you encounter unexpectedly old debris that you speak to your fathers and This French glory transplanted everywhere. In all places where the warrior spirit of Europe has left traces of his passage, the people that dominates all others, that which the shepherd, the camel, the cicerone, attribute great deeds and occupation of the fortresses on the wild peaks, the French people, which eventually gave its name to the common people in the East. Go to Greece, you speak of Frankish knights, dukes of Athens and Corinth force the Dardanelles. you will see in the seraglio the throne of Baldwin, emperor of Constantinople, made the pilgrimage to Jerusalem, a monk you describe the camp of Godfrey of Bouillon, you chausserez the golden spurs on the stone of the Holy Sepulchre, go to the desert, Arabic will tell you Ptolemais, Saint-Jean d’Acre go to Egypt, the last of the Mamelukes will tell you the great French conquest; finally follow our crazy caravan in the valleys of Rhodes, and each portal mansion on slab even ruined castles everywhere you see the shield of France and you read its old currency. I know that this long race around the world has not expanded our borders: it was like the passage of an overflowing torrent and returned to his bed, but the children, youth, women, the elderly, do not enchant not least the history of the French people as a wonderful poem. Throughout this grand knight errant hit his battle-ax the walls of cities across rested lakeside, he defeated the giants alone delights the heart of beautiful Sultana, who by love, are Christian, with him measure the most famous warriors who alone is in chains, on the banks of the Nile, shows so large that the Saracens offer him the turban of the caliphs and say: We never saw more proud Christian! It was he who finally appeared to them yesterday, and the dervishes prostrate called the Sultan of fire.

Three hours after our departure from the city, the end of a plain myrtle and heather, the ruins of the old Rhodes appeared at the top of a mountain. Everyone rushed at a gallop, but he had to follow the trail became so steep that we preferred to throw us down from our animals to climb the hill on foot. I stopped half way near a wooden shack lost in the foliage, two young boys with a black slave carved stakes before a venerable bearded Turk smoking his pipe crouching under a tree. Above my head, my companions were arrested in a wood of sycamores and pines clustered near mules on a rock they waved me to hurry and showed bottles and they withdrew provisions of a basket. This sight gave me courage, and after a last effort I got one of those solitudes qu’aimaient anchorites, the sky, the sea, the water murmurs, fleeing the plain in the distance, nothing was wanting to the landscape . Our guides had extended the carpet near a spring that fell from the mountain in a marble basin, then they served us bread and meat on large sheets, wine dipped in water, and all leaning behind shook their heads mules loaded with bells, merrily we began the meal.

When I wore my glass to my lips, I saw the Turkish advance to near white beard which I had just passed, his son followed him two and a slave, who was a fire in an earthen pot and coffee cups in a basket. The fine old man, without showing the slightest hesitation, sat down on my carpet, put his hand on his heart, bowed his head slightly and spoke a few words slowly guttural Mr. Gandon we translated thus: - Welcome to my domain and Allah give you health! All hands placed immediately before the Muslim bread, pâté, poultry, but he refused, so I showed him my glass, saying: Drink the wine of Christians which makes the heart happy and is loving the works of Allah. He pushed my arm gently and said: - I have fasted until evening, and the Prophet forbade wine to believers. - Since God has vines on earth, is it not that the man tasted the juice? - God, replied the Turk calmly placed the cluster in European countries, and it has not defended the wine to Christians, but in the East, instead of vine ripened Allah oranges, lemons and watermelons, which are small sources of freshness in our fiery sun; Allah has not willed that we had wine, heat for your cold climates.

The old man filled his pipe and handed it to the negro, it put a little coal on the tobacco inhaled a few puffs to turn, and wiping the amber mouthpiece with his hand, he gave it to his master who, after having kept a few moments, presented me as a sign of friendship. The slave then gathered flat stones, covered them with hot ashes and prepared the coffee, the son of the old man served us. This wooded mountain, the beautiful fields, the castles scattered throughout the olive groves that we have dominion look, belonged to Turkish. Devout Muslim, he had one desire to go to Mecca with his children and to gird the green turban, a hallmark of those who have made the holy pilgrimage. He offered to sell us this rich field for eight thousand dollars, nearly a thousand crowns. This man planted nothing, not harvested, never worked. Followed by his children, it was rising on the hill and was building a hut under the cool shade near a stream, its bed, as the patriarch, the feeding of the products of the chase, when supplies were lacking, they cut a tree Slave loaded his donkey and went to sell the wood to the city, where he brought rice, tobacco and coffee. The burning hours of the day spent in the ecstasy of prayer or contemplation of the wonderful spectacle presented by silent valleys, the sea breaking on the beach, and islands grouped on the horizon like ships surprised by the calm. In winter, they descended into the plains and sheltered under a feudal ruin. Saw me lying on the rug in front of loneliness so smiling, so fragrant, about this happy family was, and a brood arise, depending on the season, on each flowering branch, I wondered if this patriarchal people did not share his best on earth. Europe tireless worker, and the East prostrated before his God reminded me of Mary and Martha, the two sisters of the Gospel, and despite myself I found myself envy the peaceful lives that are a continual aspiration to the mysterious regions where the soul must be lost in unalloyed happiness.

We still had to climb a third of the mountain, but when He took away the cool shade of the source, my friends could not decide where to leave their pipes, nor leave the green oasis of inviting them to sleep and they closed their eyes, wished me a good trip, and I went alone. There was no path set, my feet entangled in the brambles and laurels, the middle of which stood ebony, cedar and fig trees, the birds were fighting fruits. From time to time, leaning against a tree trunk, I looked back and the landscape grew gave me strength, sometimes in stones and debris that were not my ride, I looked eagerly for traces of genius Greek. I entered last in the old Rhodes by the breach of a wall, too tired, but almost as proud as the first who once went there by storm. I was on a plateau covered with framed walls and ruined towers, trees grew among the ruins where I persisted always looking for vestiges of antiquity. Soon I discovered a lovely Gothic chapel standing almost entire. This view dispelled my doubts: the old Rhodes did not belong to Greece, I was in the middle of a medieval building, but the proportions and outbuildings were much more significant than all the graceful castles that we had seen on the road.

I sat on top of the chapel, behind a fig tree that had pierced the roof, and I asked these large stones mutilated. There was not to be mistaken, this height fortified by the sea, with a chapel enclosed within the walls, was one of those commanderies had multiplied that hospital in Europe. Around these buildings, which held both the monastery, the citadel and castle seigneurial vassals were grouped around cultivating the land. In Rhodes, the commanderies could only be fortresses protecting the campaigns against the Turks who landed on the coast, ravaged the country in haste and fled with their loot: knights wore retaliation, and their galleys, constantly running, approached the land of darkness, cast anchor at the bottom of creeks, and carried desolation in all parts of the empire. It was these terrible race of Christians on the coast and to the walls of Constantinople which determined Soliman Rhodes to remove the hospital, who had for two hundred years. Mahomet had already pushed all the Muslim forces against its walls, only Orient Point with float where the banner of the cross. Nearly succumbing order was rescued by the chivalrous Amer IV, Count of Savoy, which forced the Turks to raise the siege. Since that time, Latin Rhodes took up arms with these four letters motto FERT Fortitudine ejus Rhodum tenuit.

Later, when sent Soliman Pasha and his janissaries with orders to report to the seraglio keys to the city or condemned their heads, Europe remained deaf to the cry of agony sublime hospital in vain brothers traversed the kingdoms in vain poets sang in over gallant to the ladies and nobles, the episodes of this Iliad Christian faith and the days of chivalry were over: England became Protestant Francis and Charles V competed for Italy the pope had the helmet on his head, left the order died and went to Malta languish until the day abandoned again, he was driven from its last refuge in England, which could register before the palace of Lavalette this entry twice liar: This island was given to the invincible England Europe thankful.

Nothing disturbed my reverie. The heat was excessive: islands, rocks Anatolia swimming in fiery vapors, no breath passed through the burning air, it was time for the middle of the day in this country flooded with light the sun made languish earth, humans, flowers, animals, until the wave ends at the shore. I was alone, eyes fixed on the sea of ​​Syria, the whole blue like the vast dome of the sky no cloud floating in space, no sail appeared on the horizon, wave and ether, oceans rivals, free as the first day, extended in space. To the west, a shadow covered the waves, the shadow of Mount Ida in ballast sparkled Cyprus before me fleeing the Taurus Mountains with its peaks covered with snow, and there, finally, if I had wings, I would have been in a few hours to rest under the cedars of Lebanon. What great memories, kingdoms destroyed crowded around me: Asia, ancient Greece, Rome, Byzantium, Venice! Closer to me, I discovered the city of Rhodes and the Tower of Knights whose niches seem to demand the old flag they kept last. It is not surprising then if I thought with some regret at the destruction of the monastic orders and military based past to make war with the Mohammedans, and destroyed without being able to reconcile their mission with the requirements of another time. Police seas, which raises too often irritating debates between the maritime powers, would it not have been well placed in the hands of an order, such as Rhodes, escaped the influence of state any receiving in her womb knights of all nations? What services would not Europe a gendarmerie active and disinterested, that his glory would defend the security of the seas? Today the Mediterranean Ocean, are covered with floating citadels which to flee skimmers sea, but the French ships, English and American, are not and can not have a special mission to pursue. Each state, for peace, sends vessels to protect its nationals in foreign countries, begin commercial treaties, through its fisheries and counters and give relief to merchant vessels, there must be a particular insult was made at the flag of power for the warship leaves its station. It then looks through the solitudes of the ocean the pirate who escapes almost always because the officer has a limited time for the cruise and more serious cases, negotiations commenced, disturbances in places too abruptly abandoned urgently remind the station point. A navy based in the special purpose of protecting against the slavers and pirates, the common interests of nations, could it provide more complete security of the seas?

After returning to Rhodes dreamed of a glorious past, I could see my sadness without thinking about the current state of this island, once so flourishing. The Knights had their port of Rhodes Dockyard. There stood the large galleys workshops and sheds small merchant ships, which under the aegis of religion engaged in extensive trade. After the conquest, the Turks, born again by the spirit and fanatical warrior who made long their strength, used the beautiful forests of oak and pine covered mountains of the island. Galleys built Rhodes swelled the Muslim fleets, or emerged in race against Christians. The Greek population itself first advantage of the immense resources offered by the use of this prodigious empire, then in all its splendor. Obedient to their national genius, which has not been denied, the Greeks became factors in Asia, cities of Syria and Egypt, their small buildings covered the Archipelago, and at the same time as filled the Piraeus and other ports of Greece submitted, sacolèves came in crowds to Rhodes, who became the warehouse as different scales of the Levant.

Apart from this general navigation which provided great benefits to shipowners, the main exports consisted of Rhodes thenceforward in wines, wooden construction. Oranges, lemons, figs, almonds, these ancient fruits that would seek to Rhodes, and are still known, were sent to Smyrna, Beirut, everywhere flocked Venetians. Wealthy Turks, exiled Pasha, farmed out their land to farmers Greeks, who sold grain to the city that knew their compatriots towards the regions where famine arose. Now everything has changed, and we can not establish with numbers the result of a trade that appears nowhere. Port military desert, the waves die along the shore on which there remain vestiges of workshops arid sands lie at the foot of the ramparts, a few fishing boats hauled on the beach, spread their nets to sun, sailors lying in the shade of planks, eternal silence silence of death that hangs over all of Turkey: this is the aspect of this place once so lively, and soon resound with the cries of sailors, if a government Smart could build on the elements of prosperity of this beautiful country.

If there is nothing to say about the current trade of Rhodes, one can not ignore the less resources that present this fertile land, the crops, once so abundant, not enough to feed twenty-five thousand inhabitants. Production are the most important wines. Though precisely estimated, however they do not lead to significant exports. Levant wines are sweet or heady, and can not be used in ordinary usage of the Franks that of Rhodes alone, mixed with water such as France, advantageously replace, especially the price, the wines of Europe . The vine grows effortlessly and requires only light work, but if it was better cultivated, and if the simplest principles of making ignorant pickers were known, Rhodes provide fine wines, also sought its tasty fruits which at this time are almost the only products sent by the island on the neighboring coasts.

Occasionally happens that a ship is looking for timber for the arsenal of Constantinople. Then the governor praised the Greeks who go down without a choice in the interior trees still standing, but as the Turks do not provide anything and never think of the future, nobody supervises workers who ravage the charming hills with oaks and firs have invaluable for small marine Sporades and Cyclades, where the ground is completely cleared.

The island is filled with olive trees, mastic and turpentine, deep valleys, mountain slopes are covered with shrubs such as the master’s absence or poverty prevent treatment. Some Greeks have coarse presses where they throw pell-mell good olives and withered they plunder, like birds in abandoned fields. Thick oil is consumed by the people, and not much out of Rhodes. All islands, all banks have the East and forests of olive trees, which grow and die at random in the depopulated. The putty is mainly used to flavor a liqueur agreeable to which it gives its name, and the Greeks and Jews engage the Turks.

In summary, Rhodes exports consist of timber, dried fruits, olives, very beautiful sponges, which are in the vicinity of the island. Imports reduce grain needed for the population, who can not learn from its territory wheat and corn that might come with ease. Thirty boats enough to trade the Greeks sail alone, they will come and go with few cases reported and a puny loading grain, but sadly these boats leave the harbor and returning aground on the sands can be called a marine exchanged these miserable sailors made by thieves can not steal the name of trade. There is nothing left in the power of Rhodes Island wealthy who, with his galleys, resisted the successors of Alexander and barbarians there are more traces of the prosperity of two centuries sheltered under the proud banner of the cross. The island is now a beautiful savannah where nature pours release all the treasures of wild vegetation that man never comes or direct or coerce, in which the pale lantern sleep during the night on the tower Arabs, browsers are now a point of recognition to avoid this land where long germinate only useless flowers. However, the Austrian steamers ranging from Smyrna in Beirut are now calling at Rhodes, and several merchant ships come to serve their quarantine before visiting the North. Perhaps this new navigation will she move over to the island, perhaps passengers, cruise travelers, captains of buildings, they find for sale and to buy in this quiet port. Hopefully, but a violent shaking alone can make this island the lethargy which it is immersed, as the entire empire.

Loud voice roused me from my contemplation and reminded me to my traveling companions. It was late, and the top of the mountain we saw the sun off in the waves seemed Sporades spoil with him, valleys darkened, and the night fell softly, bringing with it a deep calm. The next day, the frigate Pearl was under sail for Athens.

(1) The order of Rhodes was divided into eight languages, each of which had a chief pillar or appointed by the synod meeting these pillars, the Grand Master at their head, were the dignitaries of St. John. Here are the names of different languages ​​with the burden of their pillar, whose functions were hereditary in each language: Provence, the pillar was grand commander of the order. - Auvergne: the pillar had the title of Grand Marshal and commander of the land forces. - France: the pillar was great-hospital charge of hospitals. In the early days, when the functions of the brothers were confined relieve the sick and pilgrims, the title of grand-hospital was the holiest and noblest. - Italy: the pillar of this language was grand admiral of the galleys, he commanded the harbor, formed the slave drivers and fleet rose in major expeditions. - Arragon, the pillar was conservative or draper, he took care of clothing. In the sequel, he was responsible for weapons and arsenals. - Germany: the pillar was bailiff or chief justice. - Castile was the pillar of religion seals and bore the title of chancellor. Knights belonged to the Portuguese language, and it explains why the Portuguese André Amaral had been named pillar of Castile. - England: the pillar took the big-name turcopolier or commander of the cavalry. After the split between religious Church of England and the Roman communion under Henry VIII, this language was dropped from the table, and the noble English Catholics who came still had to cross the choice of incorporation.

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