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incompatible with rapid motion. The turban is the most characteristic feature of Eastern dress, though this is giving place to the Greek cap, as the robe is often exchanged for a close jacket. The dress of the women resembles that of the men in form, though the turban is more light and graceful. The materials of female dress are superb, gaudy colors being preferred. The hair is usually plaited with an embroidered piece of gauze, which falls to the waist, where it is fastened with gold knobs. A display of diamonds and pearls is made, according to the wealth of the wearer.



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Eastern Ladies riding and walking.

going abroad, the ladies are veiled. The apartments of the harem, which are devoted to the women, are spacious and gorgeously decorated. The centre room has a marble fountain, whose falling waters lull the indolent to repose, or amuse the thoughtless with its

Mahometan Worship.

Various religions exist in Turkey. The Jews preserve their own, and Christianity prevails, to some extent, with the Greek, Armenian, and Syrian population. Mahometanism, however, is not only professed by the Turks, but by others who have become impressed with Turkish manners. The six commandments of the Koran are, belief in one God; in Mahomet's apostolical character; observance of the fast of Ramadan; daily prayers and ablutions; the bestowal of one tenth of one's revenue in alms; and the performance of the pilgrimage to Mecca. The prayers are five, and to be repeated daily.

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sorrow, rending their garments and shedding many | The body is borne by a procession to the grave, and tears. The women, who flock in from all quarters, mourning women are hired to sit by the tomb, and make their screams heard through the neighborhood. perform a wake in honor of the dead.

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common and characteristic spectacles of this renowned but melancholy land. Yet, in the midst of this gloom, these regions strongly engage the attention. There is no part of the world where so many objects of historical interest are to be seen; every mountain and river, every plain and valley, almost every product of nature, is associated with remembrances of the past. An obscure village bears the title of Bethlehem-and excites reverence as the birthplace of our Savior; a pillar of salt, in the region of the Dead Sea, reminds

The manufactures of Asiatic Turkey are chiefly of | statues-sculptured by the hand of Grecian art—are an ordinary kind, for internal consumption. Yet silk, leather, and soap, are staples of the Levant. The admired Turkey carpets are woven by the women of the wandering tribes in the upper districts of the country. No part of the world affords such advantages for maritime commerce; and in former times this was carried on to a great extent. Here, indeed, commerce originated, and for ages this region was the great centre of trade as well by land as sea. The splendor of its ancient emporia - Tyre, Sidon, Damascus, Antioch, Rhodes, Cyprus, Miletus excited the admiration of the world. Now Smyrna and Aleppo are the only considerable marts of trade; the former exporting the fruits and manufactures of Asia Minor, and the latter being the centre of the caravan trade of interior Asia. Agriculture is conducted with little industry or


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The principles and mode of government are here the same as in European Turkey: we therefore reserve our account of it till we come to treat of that portion of the empire. We need only say, that the country is divided into about twenty eyalets, or large provinces; these are subdivided into sanjaks or liwas, that is, districts. The limits of these frequently vary. The pachas, or provincial governors, are dependent upon the sultan, who resides at Constantinople. In their administration, they are despotic and oppressive to the people, plundering them with little reserve. In some of the interior and remote districts, as among the Turcomans and Koords, the chiefs are only tributary; while others frequently deny the authority of the sultan altogether.

In general, it may be remarked, that the aspect of European Turkey is that of depression and gloom, rendered even more striking from the beauty of the climate, and the evidences, on every side, of former wealth and magnificence. Extensive tracts, once covered with fertility, are now converted into barren plains or naked deserts; and squalid villages built among majestic ruins of cities, columns, capitals, friezes, and

Pillar of Salt, near the Dead Sea. (See p. 143.)

us of the fate of Sodom and the story of Lot's wife. A heap of ruins recalls the name of Zenobia; a few scattered relics indicate the site of Troy, and speak of Achilles, Hector, and Homer; a marsh and a mound of earth bear the name of Babylon, and a plain of sand hills, is all that remains of Nineveh!

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THE tribes of barbarians who inhabited the wide tract of country to the east of the Caspian Sea received from the ancients the general name of Scythians: they are now known to Europeans under the appellation of Tartars. Although this country has been from time to time subject to a succession of warlike nations, they have probably all been derived from the same original stock; for, though known to the rest of the world by various names, their habits and character have always been the same. The Scythians of the Greeks do not differ essentially from the modern TarBefore the time of Alexander, the region called Transoxiana was inhabited by a nation known under the general name of Saca: of these the Gete and Massageta were powerful tribes.


From the earliest ages of history to the present time, the pastoral tribes and communities of this region have been continually changing. They have, in their turn, subdued others, and been conquered themselves. We find them sometimes improving and extending their dominions; at other times, compelled to leave their pasture lands to fiercer and more numerous hordes; and, in all cases, forming, as they proceed into the fertile plains of Southern Asia or of Europe, part of that great tide of violence and rapine, which, rising near the Frozen Ocean, has been seen to roll, before its destructive waves subsided, to the shores of the Indian Ocean. This picture, however just of the greater part of the inhabitants of this country, does not necessarily represent the character of the whole. It shows the progress of the great and pow erful tribes which have occupied the plains, and given sovereigns to this vast region. Many of the smaller tribes, unable to defend the level country against invaders, took refuge in the lofty and rugged mountains, with which many parts of this wide tract is intersected; and some of these have continued, for many generations, to maintain unchanged their original language | and manners. Other inhabitants, devoted to the peaceful arts of husbandry and trade, must have been preserved, by the character of their occupations, from those violent changes to which the martial tribes were exposed. This difference in the habits of the people gave rise to two distinguishing names, which appear to have existed from time immemorial among them; Turk signifying a man of military habits, and Tanjeck one devoted to civil pursuits.

The people called Hiatilla, or White Huns, but who were in reality a tribe of Tartars, issuing from the level country north of the great wall of China, made themselves masters of Transoxiana, about the middle of the fifth century. The Byzantine historians give us very little information of these people; but they tell us that the imperial ambassadors found their king, Disabules, under a tent, attended by a coach, or wagon, with two wheels; that it was the custom of these people to shave the beard in token of grief, and that this ceremony was required of the ambassadors on the death of one of the kings. They inform us, moreover, that, at the funeral of a king, four men

were brought out of prison and slain on his tomb, with the horses of the deceased monarch; that they publicly worshipped fire and water, and chanted hymns in honor of the earth, notwithstanding which they adored only one God, the Creator of the visible world, and sacrificed to him horses, bulls, and sheep.

When these people first became known to their neighbors under the name of Turks, they were said to be very skilful in forging iron. About the year 500, Disabules, sent an embassy to Persia, proposing a commercial treaty for the purpose of carrying on the trade in silk. It is said the Persians not only rejected this offer, but poisoned the Turkish ambassadors, which occasioned an enmity between the two nations that has not subsided to this day. It was on this occasion that a connection was first formed between the Turks and the Byzantine empire. The emperor Justin entered into a league with Disabules, and agreed to invade Media, while the Turks should make a descent upon the Persian dominions from the north.

In the reign of the emperor Maurice, an ambassador from the Turkish monarch visited Constantinople with a letter to the emperor, addressed thus: "The khagan, the great lord of seven nations, and master of seven climates of the world, to the king of the Romans." The Greek historians, however, give such scanty and confused accounts of the transactions with these people, that scarcely any thing can be learned from them. The chief information respecting the early history of the Turks is derived from the Persian, Turkish, and Chinese authors; but the geographical knowledge of these writers was so imperfect, and the difficulty of identifying the names used by them so great, that this portion of history is involved in much confusion.

Tumwen Khan was one of the most famous of the

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ancient Turkish sovereigns. He was originally a blacksmith; and, in order to preserve the memory of the origin of the family, his descendants were accustomed, every second year, to hold a festival with great ceremony, and hammer a piece of hot iron upon an anvil a custom which continued to the time of Zingis Khan, who was also represented to be the son of a blacksmith. About the middle of the seventh century, the Turks made a movement southward, passed the River Sihon, and laid waste the country in that quarter. Nearly at the same period, the Saracens invaded Persia from the south, and, in a short time, made themselves masters of the whole kingdom. In the early part of the eighth century, they expelled the Turks from the provinces which they had conquered to the south of the Sihon.

The Arabs, as well as the Persians, bore a great hatred to the Turks, not only on account of their frequent invasions from the north, but also from the intestine disturbances which they caused in their dominions. The khalifs were accustomed to procure great numbers of young Turkish slaves, which they retained and educated in their country. These were formed into military companies, and formed a body of pretorian guards. They naturally grew insolent by the possession of power, frequently rebelled against the khalif, and even deposed him, and placed a creature of their own in his seat. These transactions were generally accompanied by scenes of great turbulence, civil wars, and outrages of every description.

As the political power of the Turks attracts more notice, we find their history dividing into two separate



branches - that of the Seljukians and that of the | deemed by orthodox Mahometans the only source of Ottomans. We shall proceed to give a distinct his legitimate authority. tory of each of these.

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Toghrul speedily subdued all Persia, and adopted every measure to establish a permanent dominion in this country. He seems to have possessed all the good and bad qualities of a Tartar chief. Violent in his temper, and insatiable of conquest, he was distinguished by courage, frankness, and generosity. His family and tribe embraced Mahometanism at the period of the first settlement of Seljuk, near Bokhara. Toghrul was greeted by the khalif, on his first victories in Persia, with the title of Rukun u Deen, or the Pillar of the Faith, and he appears to have been a zealous promoter of the religion which he professed. He erected a great number of mosques, and patronized pious and learned men.

Alp Arslan, or the Conquering Lion, succeeded his uncle Toghrul, (A. D. 1063.) He united valor and generosity with the love of learning; and could we regard him in the same light in which he is con

THE Seljukian Turks derive their name from Seljuk, a chief of great reputation, who was compelled to quit the court of Bighoo Khan, the sovereign of the Turks of Kipjack, who inhabited the plains of Khozar. Seljuk, with his followers, emigrated from the steppes of Tartary to the plains of Bokhara, in the early part of the eleventh century. He died at a very advanced age. His son Michael became known to Sultan Mah-sidered by Mahometan authors, we should esteem him moud of Ghizni, and was greatly honored by that monarch, who, it is said, persuaded him to cross the Oxus, and settle in Khorasan. The first lands which this tribe received from the family of Ghizni were granted by Massoud, the successor of Mahmoud, (A. D. 1037.) He was compelled, by his inability to oppose their progress, to enter into a treaty with them. Their leader Toghrul assumed the title and state of a sovereign at Nishapour, in the northern part of Kho


From this point he was induced to extend his conquests westward, by what he had heard of the distracted state of the territories of the khalif. Leaving his brother Daood in Khorasan, he advanced into the Persian province of Irak, which he subdued. He then marched upon Bagdad, captured the city, and made a prisoner of the khalif, Ul Kaim. After this, he made an expedition against Mosul and the territory around it, which he soon conquered, and returned in triumph to Bagdad, where he was received with great pomp by Ul Kaim. The Turkish monarch, we are told, approached the commander of the faithful on foot, accompanied by his nobles, who, laying aside their arms, joined in the procession. The khalif appeared with all the equipage of state that belonged to his high office. He was seated on a throne, which was concealed by a dark veil. The celebrated bourda, or black mantle, of the Abbassides was thrown over his shoulder, and his right hand held the staff of Mahomet.

Toghrul kissed the ground, and, after standing for a short time in a respectful posture, was led to the khalif, near whom he was placed on a throne. His commission was then read, appointing him the lieutenant, or vicegerent, of the vicar of the holy prophet, and the lord of all Mahometans. He was invested with seven dresses, and seven slaves were bestowed on him, which ceremony implied that he was appointed to rule the seven regions subject to the commander of the faithful. A veil of gold stuff, scented with musk, was thrown over his head, on which two crowns were placed, one for Arabia and the other for Persia. Two swords were girt on his loins, to signify that he was ruler of the East and the West. This display satisfied the pride of the khalif, and the Turkish chief was pleased to receive a sanction for his conquests from the spiritual head of his faith, who was still

one of the best, as he certainly is one of the most renowned, among the sovereigns of Asia. But he cruelly persecuted the Christians of Armenia, Georgia, and Iberia; and these are the actions which the Mussulman historians describe as the most praiseworthy. It was his custom to put a large iron collar, - some writers say a horseshoe, as a mark of ignominy, on the neck of every Christian who refused to change his religion. His invasion of Georgia, and the severities which he exercised upon the inhabitants of that country who were reluctant to adopt the creed of Mahomet, roused the court of Constantinople to a sense of its imminent danger from the Turkish armies, which had now advanced as far as Phrygia.

The emperor, Romanus Diogenes, took the field at the head of the imperial forces, and by his courage and skill soon forced the invading armies back upon their own frontier. Romanus desired to improve his success, and advanced into Armenia and Aderbijan. He was met near the village of Konongo, in the latter province, by Alp Arslan, who, though confident in his own courage and that of his army, shuddered, as his panegyrists state, at the thought of shedding the blood of true believers, and offered liberal terms to the Roman emperor. This prince, they add, imputed the moderation of the Turkish sovereign to a wrong cause, and replied, with insolence, that he would hearken to no terms, unless the sultan abandoned his camp to the Roman army, and surrendered his capital, Rhe, as a pledge of his sincere desire for peace. When Alp Arslan heard this answer, he prepared for action. Romanus was confident of victory. Alp determined not to survive defeat. He made a display of pious resignation by tying up the tail of his horse, and clothing himself in a white robe or shroud, perfumed with musk. He exchanged his bow and arrows for a cimeter and mace, while his conduct, his dress, and his speeches proclaimed to every soldier, that if he could not preserve his earthly kingdom by a victory over the infidels, he was resolved to obtain a glorious crown of martyrdom.

The troops of Romanus commenced the action, and were at first successful; but the valor of their emperor led him too far; and when he desired to retreat to his camp, the cowardice and treachery of his followers threw his ranks into confusion. The experience of Alp Arslan took advantage of this crisis; and a


general charge of his whole army completed the defeat of the Christian host. The emperor was wounded and made prisoner by an obscure officer, whom Alp Arslan had, on the morning of that day, at a general review, threatened to disgrace on account of his mean and deformed appearance. The illustrious prisoner was carried before the sultan, who treated him with great kindness and distinction. He asked his captive, at their first conference, what he would have done if fate had reversed their lot. "I would have given thee many a stripe," was the imprudent answer of the haughty Greek. This excited no anger in the breast of the brave and generous conqueror. He only smiled, and asked Romanus what he expected would be done to him. "If thou art cruel," said the emperor," put me to death; if vain-glorious, load me with chains, and drag me to thy capital; if generous, grant me my liberty." Alp Arslan was neither cruel nor vain-glorious. He released his prisoner, gave all his captives dresses of honor, and distinguished them by every mark of his friendship and regard. Romanus, to requite these favors, agreed to pay a large ransom, and a fixed tribute annually. But he could never recover his throne, which had been usurped during his absence. Alp was preparing to restore him by force of arms, when he learned that the unfortunate Romanus Diogenes had been imprisoned and put to death by his subjects. After his triumph over the imperial armies, Alp Arslan resolved on a still more arduous enterprise. He desired to establish the dominion of the family of Seljuk over their native country; and he summoned his warriors to invade those vast regions from whence their fathers had issued. His power now extended from Arabia to the Oxus; and his army consisted of two hundred thousand soldiers. He marched into Kharism, the greater part of which he subdued. He then threw a bridge over the Oxus, and passed that river without opposition. But his proud career was now near its close. His operations in Kharism had been much prolonged by the resistance of a small fortress called Berzem, defended by a chief named Yusuf. The sultan, irritated that his grand designs should have been delayed by so contemptible a place, after its capture ordered its gallant defender to appear before him, and, with feelings unworthy of his character, loaded him with abuse for his insolence and obstinacy in resisting the Turkish army. Yusuf was provoked to a violent reply; and the monarch so far forgot himself as to order him to be put to a cruel death. Yusuf instantly drew his dagger, and flew at the sultan. The guards rushed in; but Alp, who deemed himself unequalled for his skill in archery, seized his bow, and ordered them to keep aloof. They did so. The sultan missed his aim; and before he could draw another arrow, he fell under the dagger of the assailant, who received the death which he had braved from a thousand hands, while the wounded monarch was borne to another tent. "I now call to mind," said he to those around him, "two lessons which I received from a reverend sage. The one bade me despise no man; the other, not to estimate myself too highly, or to confide in my personal prowess. I have neglected what his wisdom taught. The vast numbers of my army, which I viewed yesterday from an eminence, made me believe that all obstacles would yield to my power. I have perished from my errors, and my end will show how weak is the power of kings and the force of man when opposed to the decrees of destiny."


Alp Arslan lived long enough to deliver his empire to his son Malek Shah, (A. D. 1073.) With his dying breath, he entreated him to intrust the chief management of affairs to the wise and pious Nizam ul Mulk, a justly celebrated minister, to whose virtue and ability he attributed the success and prosperity of his own reign. This monarch was buried at Meru, in Khorassan; and the following impressive sentence was inscribed on his tomb: "All who have seen the glory of Alp Arslan exalted to the heavens, come to Meru, and you will behold it buried in the dust."

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UNDER the administration of Nizam ul Mulk, the empire of the Seljukian Turks attained the highest prosperity, and Persia enjoyed a degree of tranquillity to which that country had long been a stranger. This minister, however, had no talent as a general. In the few military operations in which he was engaged, he seems to have trusted more to his piety than to his valor. When foiled in his attempt to make himself master of a castle in the province of Fars, he was consoled by the philosophical reflection, that “a man should not become impatient from disappointment, as it could not cure, but it doubled the pain." When the same fortress capitulated, from the fountains which supplied it becoming dry, he ascribed his success solely to his prayers.


The generals of Malek Shah conquered almost the whole of Syria and Egypt; and this prince, more fortunate than his father, not only subdued Bokhara, Samarcand, and Kharism, but received homage from the tribes beyond the Jaxartes, and compelled the sovereign of the distant country of Kashgar to coin money in his name, and to pay him an annual tribute. It is related that when Malek Shah was passing the Oxus, the ferrymen on that river complained that they were paid by an order on the revenues of Antioch. The sultan spoke to his minister, who replied, “It is not to defer payment of their wages, but to display your glory and the wide extent of your dominions." sultan was pleased with this flattery; and the complaints of the boatmen ceased when they found that they could negotiate the bill without loss. This fact is curious, as showing something of the monetary systems of that day. Malek Shah is said to have travelled over his vast dominions twelve times, which is hardly credible; for the Seljukian empire, in his reign, extended from the Mediterranean nearly to the wall of China; so that prayers were every day offered up for his health in Jerusalem, Mecca, Medina, Bagdad, Ispahan, Rhe, Bokhara, Samarcand, Ourgunge, and Kashgar.

Eastern historians recount many anecdotes to prove

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