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The antiquarian attractions of Aswân are very considerable, and many weeks may be profitably spent in visiting the various sites of interest in its neighbourhood. The beautiful little

Island of Philæ, with its graceful temples, will afford occupation and enjoyment for many days, for the attractions of its most characteristic sculptures and pillars are well-nigh inexhaustible. The picturesque situation of the island, fixed as it is amid wild and weird scenery, is fascinating, and few of those who take the trouble to visit it several times will have difficulty in understanding how ideas of admiration and awe came to grow up in the minds of travellers, both native and foreign, as they stood and looked upon the sanctuaries which were made thrice holy by the shrines of Osiris and Isis of Philæ. All the little islands in the cataract to the north of the Aswân Dam are worth several visits, and the inscriptions on the rocks, which are found everywhere on them, are of great interest. One or two expeditions may be made to the ruins of the Coptic monastery on the west bank of the cataract, and the tombs of the VIth and XIIth dynasties, which are on the same side of the river, and run in terraces along the great hill immediately opposite Aswân, are among the most attractive of their class. Delightful rides may be taken near the old granite quarries, and in the desert further to the east, and the marks still remaining of the methods by which the blocks were got out of the quarries by the ancient Egyptians, to say nothing of the unfinished colossal statues and obelisk, afford much material for study. Many visitors take pleasure in tracing out the old road from Aswân to Philæ, and in examining the remains of the great wall which was built to protect the settlements and forts in the cataract from the attacks of the tribes of the Eastern Desert; there are also numerous inscriptions to be seen on the rocks by the way. To many visitors the camp of the Bisharîn is a source of great amusement, and now that the bâzârs are once more becoming filled with the products of the handiwork of the tribes of the Southern Sûdân, they are of considerable interest. The sense of physical well-being, which is obtained by riding in the desert in this delightful place, is rarely forgotten by those who have experienced it. Those who are attracted by desert scenery will derive great pleasure from a journey to Darâw, along the old caravan road which runs due north of Aswân. Even in fairly hot weather the air is light and relatively cool, and very interesting mirages are frequently seen.

(15) The Voyage up the Nile.

The method of ascending the Nile best suited to the majority of travellers is by the Tourist Steamer, one or more of which leave Cairo every week during the season for Aswân, connecting with other services from Aswân (Shallâl) to Wâdî Halfah. The daily itinerary of each of these services is given on pp. 349-351.

These first-class Tourist Steamers are constructed of the best materials, with every known device and improvement conducive to the personal comfort and convenience of passengers. The cabins are large and furnished for long voyages, and in no case contain more than two beds, while many have but one. The decks are fitted up like the verandahs of a country cottage, the upper deck having a drawing-room and a large observation saloon, from the windows of which the varied scenes of the life of the Nile may be viewed; on this deck there are also self-contained suites of sitting and bed-rooms, with private baths with hot and cold water supplies and every toilet convenience. The dining saloons, from which uninterrupted views are obtained, are large and airy, and the table is excellent and well served. Every steamer has a reading saloon with a library of interesting works on Egypt, and concerts, dances, and entertainments are frequent. All the saloons are heated by electricity. In short, a Nile Tourist Steamer means river travelling under the most favourable auspices, in the most comfortable quarters, on a floating hotel with a good and generous table, with pleasant company and pleasant surroundings. The whole of the most interesting sights on the Nile - temples, ancient remains, bâzârs, native life—are brought within the compass of the traveller with a minimum expenditure of wear and tear.

The charge for passage includes all outgoings on donkeys, boats, guides and so forth, with nothing more to pay but an optional douceur to the servants, as in all steamboat arrangements, and the inevitable bakshîsh-a few piastres—to the donkey boys.

The voyage from Cairo to Aswân and back occupies twenty days, and from Aswân to Wâdî Ḥalfah and back seven days. Those who desire to make the voyage in the privacy of their own family or party may travel by dahabiyyah or by private steamer.

The Dahabiyyah is the most ancient style of boat known on the Nile. Although greatly modified and improved according to modern ideas, it still conforms in many respects to the type originally in use under the Pharaohs. It represents the most luxurious, but most expensive, means of travelling on the Nile. The drawback to the use of the sailing dahabiyyah is the chance of encountering contrary winds, but this may be entirely obviated by the employment of steam tugs, a number of which are always available.

The Private Steamer is in great favour with those to whom time is of importance, but who yet desire to travel as a private party. These private steamers, like the sailing dahabiyyahs, are of various sizes, adapted to the requirements of large or small parties. Both are most luxurious in their appointments.

For fuller information, see Thos. Cook & Son's annual programme of arrangements for visiting Egypt, the Nile and Soudan, issued gratuitously on application.

N.B.-A Government tax is levied on all travellers who wish to visit the monuments, temples, etc., in Egypt, such tax to be devoted to the maintenance and preservation of the monuments, temples, etc.; therefore all travellers by steamers and dahabiyyahs will have to provide themselves, before leaving for the Nile voyage, with the necessary card admitting them to inspect the monuments.

Tickets to visit Antiquities are available from July 1st for 12 months.

A. For the whole of Egypt


120 piastres (24s. 8d.). B. Gîzah Pyramids, ascent or entrance, each 10 piastres. c. Sakkârah ...




5 piastres. Obtainable of Messrs. Thos. Cook & Son, at the Egyptian Museum at Cairo, and of the officials at Luxor, Gîzah and Sakkârah.

(16) Bakshish, or Bakhshish.*-This word, which is the equivalent of "gratuity," "tip," or "pourboire," literally means a "gift," and it will probably be the first word the traveller will hear when he lands on Egyptian soil, and the last as he leaves it. Those who render him the smallest service will demand bakshîsh, as likewise will those who render him

, bakshish, plur.,, bakashish. The Persian form

of the word is Bakhshish.

no service at all, but who stand about, stare at him, and obstruct the way; the half-naked child lying in the dust will cry 'shish after him, the older children will shout the word at him in chorus, and labourers will stop their work and ask for bakshish on the chance that they may get something given to them for nothing. Formerly in Egypt highly placed officials took bakshish openly, but as they received no regular salary this is not to be wondered at; in recent years this abuse has greatly diminished, and bakshish is now only demanded by those who wish to be overpaid for their services, and by beggars. So far as possible the traveller should agree on the price of every service beforehand, but he must remember that even when he has paid the sum agreed upon the native will ask for bakshîsh. So long as travellers will overpay the Egyptians for their services, so long will the cry for bakshish be a nuisance to everybody. No hard-and-fast rule can be laid down, for the simple reason that the generosity of benevolent men and women which finds expression in indiscriminate almsgiving and charity, even when known to be misapplied, refuses to be curbed. It must, however, be pointed out that those who bestow gifts on an unreasonably large scale make travelling difficult for people of moderate means, and for some wholly impossible. each traveller would make it a rule never to give bakshîsh, except for some positive service rendered, worth the sum given, he would confer a boon upon the people and upon future travellers. In Egypt, as elsewhere, the traveller who pays best will always be waited upon first, and the more bakshîsh the native is given the more he will expect; each season finds him more and more dissatisfied with the bakshish with which he would have been quite content a few years ago. A bargain once made should be adhered to, for when once the native realizes that his employer intends to stand firm, he rarely gives further trouble. Among claimants for bakshish must be mentioned the professional beggars, who are numerous; many of these are impostors. On the other hand many of the maimed, the halt, the blind, and the aged ought to be helped, and a few piastres judiciously bestowed often smooth the way of those who, through an accident, or sickness, or no fault of their own, have fallen on evil times. In country districts the traveller will save himself a good deal of trouble if he will provide himself with a bag of copper paras (40 = 1 piastre tariff) or nickel millims



(10 I piastre tariff) before leaving Cairo, for the most urgent wants of the deserving beggars can be supplied with a few of these, and the danger of demoralizing the native is reduced to a minimum.

(17) The Traveller in Egypt.—The traveller who visits Egypt for the first time will certainly be delighted with the country, but it is probable that he will not admire the natives with whom he will come in contact until he knows them fairly well. The Egyptians in general, until quite recently, have, like other Muḥammadans, never been accustomed to travel, and they look upon those who wander from country to country as beings who are possessed of restless though harmless devils. Like their more fanatical co-religionists and kinsmen in Mesopotamia, they believe that the ancient Egyptians were idolaters and very wicked people, and that God destroyed them, and blotted out their kingdoms and buried their palaces and temples, because of their iniquity. That anyone should wish to make excavations for the love of learning or the advancement of science is more than they can understand, and the older generation regard all those who do work of this kind as wicked men. "How do you dare to dig up what God hath buried ?” said a native to the writer some years ago, and even when it was pointed out to him that the smallest object could not be dug up "unless God willed it," he was discontented with the explanation. Egyptians of the "old school," and especially those who have been much in contact with the orthodox Turkish official, still believe that the "Frangî," or European traveller, has some ulterior motive in going about the country, and nothing will induce them to realize that the love of travel, and the wish to see new cities and new peoples, will draw men from their homes into remote countries. The younger generation, though not generally fanatical, is as sceptical about the traveller's motives as his elders, only, seeing that money is to be made out of the "Frangî," he conceals his doubts, and devotes himself to making money out of him. The Egyptian knows that the possession of money will enable him to keep wives, to dress well, and to gratify his desires for pleasure; he therefore loses no opportunity of getting money from the stranger, whom he believes to possess an inexhaustible supply of gold and silver. Speaking generally, the traveller has very little opportunity of seeing the better class of Egyptians, and he must by no means judge the whole nation by those who minister to his wants in the great cities. The Egyptian, the worst side of whose

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