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THE LIBRARY

OF

THE UNIVERSITY

OF CALIFORNIA



PRESENTED BY

PROF. CHARLES A. KOFOID AND

MRS. PRUDENCE W. KOFOID






M ' ill i ' ! E



, N D F E '■ P f







THE NILE BOAT



GLIMPSES OF THE



LAND OF EGYPT.



BY W. II. BART LETT



U'thor op



FORTY DAYS IN THE DESERT.



sjranii fiiitinn.



LONDON :
ARTHUR HALL, VIRTUE, AND CO.,



25, PATERNOSTER ROW.
Mnrccr..



S3

SO



PREFACE.



To add another book on Egypt to the number that have already
appeared, may almost appear like a piece of presumption. But it
should be remarked, that besides the army of erudite ' savans' who have
enlisted themselves in the study of its antiquities, there has always
been a flying corps of light-armed skirmishers, who, going lightly over
the ground, busy themselves chiefly with its picturesque aspect ; who
aim at giving lively impressions of actual sights, and at thus cre-
ating an interest which may lead the reader to a further investigation
of the subject. This class of writers can, of course, even when suc-
cessful in their object, claim but a very humble rank. The modicum
of historical and archaeological lore with which they are accustomed
to season their narratives must, naturally, be borrowed from others ;
all the merit that falls to them being the faithful description of what
they have themselves beheld. Of such slight texture is the composi-
tion of the present volume. The author had, indeed, entirely re-
nounced the idea of preparing one, and was only encouraged to do so
by the kind reception of a recent production of the same stamp, which
aimed at producing distinctness of impressions by the combination of
the pencil and the pen.



While disclaiming for the text of his book any pretensions to
originality, the writer is anxious to say that this is not the case with
the illustrations, of which the whole were drawn upon the spot, many
of them with the Camera Lucida. He has endeavoured to present,
within small compass, as much variety as possible, displaying the
principal monuments of the earlier or Pharaonic monuments, as at
Thebes ; the later Ptolemaic style, as at Edfou and Phihe ; with some
of the most beautiful specimens of the Arabian, at Cairo. The sites
of Alexandria and Thebes, with their principal ruins, are, it is hoped,






M313346



rendered distinct and intelligible. Something, tuo, is attempted of
the characteristic scenery of the river, and something of modern man-
ners and customs. The figures were all put in from actual sketches,
often exactly as they stand. In short, the book, though far from
giving an adequate idea of Egyptian scenery and monuments, which
is indeed impossible on the scale, so far as it goes, may claim to be a
correct one, at least in intention and endeavour.

The authorities quoted are generally named, but the author cannot
omit to acknowledge his especial obligations to the kindness of Mr.
Samuel Sharpe, the historian of Egypt. The interest taken by that
gentleman in every attempt to popularise the favourite subject of his
studies, has led him, not only to present the writer with a brief in-
troduction, but also to allow the literal quotation of such portions of
his volume as happened to bear upon the subject described, giving
thereby a permanent utility and value to what would otherwise be
trivial and fugitive. Thus, the entire historical sketch of Thebes,
prefixed to the account of its ruins, is extracted in full from Ins
valuable " History of Egypt."



Finally, should any one, by glancing over these pages, be tempted
to think of visiting the country they describe, let him not suppose it
is intended to usurp the functions of a guide book, beyond pointing
out the prominent objects of interest. For the manners and customs
of Ancient Egypt, and a detailed description of the existing monu-
ments, the works of Sir Gardner Wilkinson are indispensable ; as are
those of Lane for the modern state of Egypt. These are not the
hasty sketches of a passing tourist, but the result of years of patient
and learned investigation ; and no one should think of going to Egypt
without them; nor, we must say in addition, without the history
already referred to. More compact and portable editions than the
present of these invaluable volumes would, however, be a boon to the
traveller, by whom, more than any one else, "a great book" is felt
to be " a urreat evil."



ILLUSTRATIONS.



ENGRAVINGS.







Engravers. To fact


page


Frontispiece. Karnak— Grand Hall .




A. Willmore




Title-page. Departure of the Kangia


from Old






Cairo ....




C. Cousen




Map of Egypt .




W. Hughes


11


Panorama of Alexandria




G. F. Storm


24


Street in Cairo .




C. Cousen


51
55


The Bazaar .







View from the Citadel




E. Brandard


GU


Mosque of Sultan Hassan




A. Willmore


64


Mosque of El Azhar ....




J. C. Bentley


GO


Tombs of the Memlook Sultans




A. Willmore


70
72


Tomb of Sultan Kaitbay








Interior of a House at Cairo .




E. Challis


74


Ferry at Ghizeh ....




C. Cousen


92


The Sphynx ....




J. C. Bentley


94


The Pyramids .




A. Willmore


100


The Slaye-boat ....




J. C. Bentley


132


The Shadoof .







13G


Map of Thebes ....




W. Hughes


161


Valley of the Tombs of the Kings




. J. C. Bentley


162


Hall of Beauty ....




C. Cousen


164


Plain of Thebes . . . .




. J. Cousen


109


Medeenet Habou ....




E. Brandard


172
175


Colossal Statue— Memnonium








The Colossi .




A. Willmore


179


Luxor from the Water




. J. C. Ben t ley


186


Propylon of Luxor




E. Challis


1S7


Approach to Thebes .




. E. Brandard


189
190


Karnak— 1st Court








Retrospective View of the Gi


and Hall


. A. Willmore


195
199


Temple ofEdfou .






Frontier of Egypt .




. J. Cousen


'205


Approach to Philjb




A. Willmore


209


Pharaoh's Bed— Phil.h




. C. Cousen


210


VlE"SV FROM PhILvK ....




J. Cousen


212


Temple of Abusimbal




. E. Brandard


215



ILLUSTRATIONS.



WOOD CUTS.








Engrain,.


Page


Landing in Egypt .....


. G. Measom


18


Noon in a Nile Boat ....


G. Dodd


31


Water-wheel on the Lower Nile


. G. Measom


40


MoSQf'E of Tooloon




63
G8


Bab Zooayleh ......


. G. Dodd


Heliopolis ......


G. Measom


90


Section of the Pyramid ....


Whimper


103


Dancing-girls .....


G. Measom


113


Tomb of Beni Hassan




120

138


Crocodile ......


Whimper


Temple of Dendera .....


. G. Measom


110


Tablet at Beirout ....


G. Dodd


152


Doctrine of the Judgment ....





165


Plan of the Memnonium





17G


Hall of ditto ......





17G


Battle-scene in ditto ....





178


Hagar Silsilis ......


. G. Measom


'201



CONTENTS.



Preface ......•••

Historical Introduction ...-•■

Chat. I. Departure from Marseilles. — the india mail. — a ship run

DOWN. A GLANCE AT MALTA. ALEXANDRIA. ANCIENT AND MODERN

CHARACTERISTICS.— PANORAMIC VIEW OF THE CITY.— ITS TOrOGRAPHY
AND HISTORICAL ASSOCIATIONS ...•■•



Chap. II. Departure from Alexandria.— the canal.— first impres-
sions OF THE NILE VALLEY. — ITS AGRICULTURE AND ANIMALS. — ANTI-
QUITY OF EGYrT. — SAIS AND NAUCRATIS. — FIRST SIGHT OF THE PYRA-
MIDS. — ARRIVAL AT CAIRO ......

Chap. III. Cairo. — situation. — characteristics. — streets. — bazaars.—

ARABIAN MONUMENTS.— MOSQUES.— GATES, TOMBS, AND PRIVATE DWELL
INGS ........

Chap. IV. Departure for thebes.— dancing-girls.— slave-boat.— the

RAMADAN. — DENDERA. — KENEH ....

Chap. V. Thebes.— its history. — Libyan suburb.— tombs of the kings

— MEDEENET HABOU. — MEMNONIUM. — LUXOR AND KARNAK



30



46



Ids






Chap. VI. Thebes to esneh and edfou. — Assouan. — the catakacts.-

rmi.E. — abusimbal. — meroe .



IMS



HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.



SAMUEL SHARPE, ESQ.



The Egyptians are the earliest people known to us as a
nation. When Abraham entered the Delta from Canaan,
they had already been long enjoying all the advantages of
a settled government and established laws. While Abraham
and his countrymen were moving about in tents and wag-
gons, the Egyptians were living in cities. They had al-
ready cultivated agriculture, and parcelled out their valley
into farms : they reverenced a landmark as a god, while
their neighbours knew of no property but herds and
moveables. They had invented hieroglyphics, and im-
proved them into syllabic writing, and almost into an
alphabet. They had invented records, and wrote their
kings' names and actions on the massive temples which
they raised. Of course we have no means of counting the
ages during which civilization was slowly making these
steps of improvement. Overlooking, therefore, those years
when the gods were said to have reigned upon earth, and
Menes the fabulous founder of the monarchy, history be-
gins with the earliest remaining records. These are, the



HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.



temple at Karnak, and the obelisk at Heliopolis, both
raised by Osirtesen I. of Thebes, and the great pyramids
built by Suphis and Sensuphis, kings of Memphis, with the
tablets in the copper mines near Sinai, which record the
conquest of that country by Suphis, and prove that those
mines had been already worked by the Egyptians. Such
was the state of Egypt in the time of Abraham. It was
divided into several little kingdoms, whose boundaries can-
not now be exactly known. In the valley to the south of
Silsilis was the kingdom of Elephantine. Next was the
kingdom of Thebes, which perhaps included all the valley
to the east of the river. It had a port at iEnum on the
Red Sea, and thus traded with Arabia. Next was the
kingdom of This, or Abydos, on the west of the river, which
had a little trade with the Great Oasis ; and then the king-
dom of Heracleopolis also on the western bank. Next was
the kingdom of Memphis, embracing the western half of
the Delta, which in the reign of Suphis had been strong
enough to conquer Thebes and the peninsula of Sinai. In
the east of the Delta were the kingdoms of Bubastis and
Tanis.

It was in the time of these little monarchies that the
Chaldeans and Phenician herdsmen were moving west-
ward, and settling quietly in the Delta. But after a few
generations, as their numbers increased, they took possession
of some of the cities, and levied a tribute from the Egyp-
tians. Their sovereigns were called the Hyksos, or
Shepherd kings, who dwelt at Abaris, probably the city
afterwards called Heliopolis, and they held their ground in



HISTORICAL INTKnJH ( JI\.



Eo-ypt for about six reigns. The tyranny, however, of the
Hyksos at length led the states of Egypt to unite against
them ; and Amasis, king of Thebes, making common
cause with the kings of the other parts of Egypt, defeated
these hateful but warlike Phenicians, and drove them out
of the country. This may have taken place about fourteen
hundred and fifty years before our era, and about two
hundred years after the reign of Osirtesen I.

With Amasis and the expulsion of the Shepherds began
the reigns of those great Theban kings, whose temples, and
statues, and obelisks, and tombs, have for more than three
thousand years made the valley of the Nile a place of such
interest to travellers. The kings of the other parts of
Egypt sunk to the rank of sovereign priests. Amunothph
I. gained Ethiopia by marriage. Thothmosis II., by his
marriage with Queen Nitocris, the builder of the third
pyramid, added Memphis to his dominions. Thothmosis
IV. perhaps carved the great sphinx. Amunothph III.
set up his two gigantic statues in the plain of Thebes, one
of which uttered its musical notes every morning at sunrise.
Oimenepthah I. added to the temples of Thebes and of
Abydos. Rameses II. covered Egypt, and Ethiopia, and
the coasts of the Red Sea, with his temples, and obelisks,
and statues. He fought successfully against the neighbour-
ing Arabs, and marched through Palestine to the shores of
the Black Sea. Rameses III. still further ornamented
Thebes with his architecture.

It was at the beginning of this period, before Memphis
was united to Thebes, that the Israelites settled in the



HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.



Delta, and Joseph, as prime minister of the king of Mem-
phis, changed the laws of Lower Egypt. And it was after
Thebes and Memphis were united, when Joseph's services
had been forgotten, that Moses led his countrymen out of
Egypt to escape the tyranny of their masters. The Egyptian
religion at this time was the worship of a crowd of gods, of
which some were stone statues, and others living animals ;
and it was against these and other Egyptian superstitions
that many of the laws of Moses are pointedly directed.

The tombs of these kings are large rooms quarried into
the Libyan hills opposite to Thebes, with walls covered
with paintings still fresh, and with hieroglyphics which we
are attempting to read. The columns which upheld their
temples are the models from which the Greeks afterwards
copied. Their statues, though not graceful, are grand and
simple, free from false ornament, and often colossal. Their
wealth was proverbial with the neighbouring nations ; and
the remaining monuments of their magnificence prove
that Egypt was at this time a highly civilized country, to
which its neighbours looked up with wonder. The Jew-
ish nation was weak and struggling with difficulties before
the reign of David ; the history of Greece begins with the
Trojan war ; but before the time of David and the Trojan
war, the power and glory of Thebes had already passed
away. Upper Egypt sunk under the rising power of the
Delta. Theban prosperity had lasted for about five hun-
dred years.



HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.



B. C. 990.

On the fall of Thebes, Shishank of Bubastis, the con-
queror of Rehoboam, governed all Egypt, and recorded on
the walls of the great Theban temple his victories over the
Jews. But after his death Egypt was torn to pieces by
civil wars. Zerah, king of Ethiopia, was able to march
through the whole length of the land. For a few reigns
the kingdom was governed by kings of Tanis. Then the
kings of Ethiopia reigned in Thebes, and led the armies of
Egypt to help the Israelites against their Assyrian masters.
This unsettled state of affairs lasted nearly three hundred
years, (luring which, as the prophet Isaiah had foretold,
Egyptians fought against Egyptians, every one against his
brother, and every one against his neighbour, city against
city, and kingdom against kingdom. It was put an end
to by the city of Sais rising to the mastery, helped by the
number of Greeks that had settled there, and by the greater
skill in arms of the Greek mercenaries whom the kings
of Sais took into their pay.

Under the kings of Sais Egypt again enjoyed a high de-
gree of prosperity. They were more despotic than the
kings of Thebes. They hired Greek mercenaries, and
struggled with the Babylonians for the dominion of Judea.
Psammetichus conquered Ethiopia. Necho began the
canal from the Nile to the Red Sea. His sailors circum-
navigated Africa. He conquered Jerusalem ; and when
the Chaldees afterwards drove back the Egyptian army,
the remnant of Judah, with the prophet Jeremiah, retreated



6 HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.

into Egypt to seek a refuge with king Hophra. The
colony of Greeks at Naucratis, a little below Sais, now
became more important. The Greek philosophers, Thales
and Solon, visited the country, brought there by trade and
the wish for knowledge. Hecataeus of Miletus went up as
high as Thebes, and Pythagoras dwelt many years among
the priests. But Egyptian greatness now rested on a weak
foundation. Jealousy increased between the native soldiers
and the more favoured Greek mercenaries. The armies in
Asia met with a more powerful enemy than formerly.
Nebuchadnezzar defeated them on the banks of the Eu-
phrates. Cyrus reconquered the island of Cyprus ; and
lastly, Cambyses overran Egypt, and reduced it to the rank
of a Persian province.

B. C. 523.

For two hundred years Egypt suffered severely under
its Persian rulers, or else from its own struggles for free-
dom, when the Persian armies were called off by warfare
in another quarter. Cambyses plundered the tombs and
temples, broke the statues, and scourged the priests.
Darius governed more mildly by native satraps ; but after
his defeat at Marathon, the Egyptians rose and made them-
selves independent for two or three years. Afterwards,
when Bactria rebelled against Artaxerxes, they again rose
and made Inarus and Amyrtaeus kings. Then for a few
years Hellanicus, and Herodotus, and other inquiring
Greeks, were able to enter the Nile, and study the customs
of this remarkable people. When the Egyptians were



HISTORICAL INTEOD1 CTION. <

again conquered, Darius Nothus attempted to alter the re-
ligion of the country. But when the civil war broke out
between Artaxerxes Mncmon and the younger Cyrus,
the Egyptians rebelled a third time against the Persians,
and with the help of the Greeks were again an independent
monarchy. Plato and Eudoxus then visited the country.
The fourth conquest by the Persians was the last, and
Egypt was governed by a Persian satrap, till by the union
among the Greek states, their mercenaries were withdrawn
from the barbarian armies, and Persia was conquered by
Alexander the Great.

B. C. 332.

The Greeks had before settled in Lower Egypt in such
numbers, that as soon as Alexander's army occupied Mem-
phis, they found themselves the ruling class. Egypt be-
came in a moment a Greek kingdom ; and Alexander
showed his wisdom in the regulations by which he guarded
the prejudices and religion of the Egyptians, who were
henceforth to be treated as inferiors, and forbidden to carry
arms. He founded Alexandria as the Greek capital. On
his death, his lieutenant Ptolemy made himself king of
Egypt, and was the first of a race of monarchs who
governed for three hundred years, and made it a second
time the chief kingdom in the world, till it sunk under its
own luxuries and vices and the rising power of Rome.
The Ptolemies founded a large public library, and a
museum of learned men. Under their patronage Theocri-
tus, Callimachus, Lycophron, and Apollonius Rhodius



8 HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.

wrote their poems ; Euclid wrote his Elements of Geome-
try ; Apollonius of Perga invented Conic Sections ; Hip-
parchus made a catalogue of the stars ; Eratosthenes
measured the size of the earth ; the Bible was translated
into Greek ; several of the Apocryphal books were written ;
Homer was edited ; anatomy was studied. But poetry
soon sunk under the despotism, and the writers were then
contented to clothe science in verse. Aratus wrote an
astronomical poem ; Manetho, an astrological poem ; Ni-
cander, a medical poem ; and afterwards Dionysius, a
geographical poem.

Under these Alexandrian kings the native Egyptians
continued building their grand and massive temples nearly
in the style of those built by the kings of Thebes and Sais.
The temples in the island of Philae, in the Great Oasis, at
Latopolis, at Ombos, at Dendera, and at Thebes, prove
that the Ptolemies had not wholly crushed the zeal and
energy of the Egyptians. An Egyptian phalanx had been
formed, armed and disciplined like the Greeks. These
soldiers rebelled against the weakness of Epiphanes, but
without success ; and then Thebes rebelled against Soter
II., but was so crushed and punished, that it never again
held rank among cities.

But while the Alexandrians were keeping down the
Egyptians, they were themselves sinking under the Ro-
mans. Epiphanes asked for Roman help ; his two sons
appealed to the senate to settle their quarrels and guard
the kingdom from Syrian invasion ; Alexander II. was
placed on the throne by the Romans ; and Auletes went to



HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION,



Rome to ask for help against his subjects. Lastly, the
beautiful Cleopatra, the disgrace of her country and the
firebrand of the Republic, maintained her power by sur-
rendering her person first to Julius Caesar, and then to
Mark Antony.

B. C. 30.

On the defeat of Mark Antony by Augustus, Egypt
became a province of Rome, and was governed by the
emperors with suspicious jealousy. It was still a Greek
state, and Alexandria was the chief seat of Greek learning
and science. Its library, which had been burnt by Caesar's
soldiers, had been replaced by that from Pergamus. The
Egyptians yet continued building temples, and covering
them with hieroglyphics as of old. But on the spread of
Christianity, the old superstitions went out of use ; the
animals were no longer worshipped ; and we find few
hieroglyphical inscriptions after the reign of Commodus.
Now rose in Alexandria the Christian Catechetical school,
which produced Clemens and Origen. The sects of
Gnostics united astrology and magic with religion. The
school of Alexandrian Platonists produced Plotinus and
Proclus. Monasteries were built all over Egypt ; Chris-
tian monks took the place of the pagan hermits, and the
Bible was translated into Coptic.



A. D. 337.

On the division of the Roman empire, Egypt fell to the
lot of Constantinople. On the rise of the Arian con-



10 HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION.

troversy, the Egyptians belonged to the Athanasian party,
while the Greeks of Alexandria were chiefly Arians.
Hence a new cause of weakness to the government.
Under Theodosius, Paganism and Arianism were for-
bidden by law, the library was burnt by the Athanasians,
and the last traces of science retreated from Alexandria
before ignorance and bigotry. The country fell off every
year in civilization, in population, and in strength ; and
when the Arabs, animated by religion, and with all the
youth and vigour of a new people, burst forth upon their
neighbours, Egypt was conquered by the followers of
Mahomet, a. d. 640, six hundred and seventy years after
it had been conquered by the Romans.



CHAPTER I.



DEPARTURE PROM MARSEILLES. — THE INDIA MAIL.— A SHIP RUN DOWN. — A GLANCE
AT MALTA.— ALEXANDRIA. — ANCIENT AND MODERN CHARACTERISTICS.— PANO-
RAMIC VIEW OF THE CITY.— ITS TOPOGRAPHY AND HISTORICAL ASSOCIATIONS.



On a bright day in the month of June, 1845, I found myself
safely berthed on board the government steamer, and sur-
rounded by the busy panorama of Marseilles and its crowded
harbour. The time for our departure had expired, but
something had detained the courier with the India mail, and



re were becoming impatient, when boats were



rapidly



pushing through the crowded shipping. In one moment they
were recognised as bringing the object of our anxious expecta-
tion, in the next all hands were active in hoisting it on
board, and in almost the next, the captain's " Go on " an-
nounced that we were ofF. Few persons at home have any idea
of the mass of correspondence thus conveyed : upwards of a
hundred square boxes, carefully sealed and marked " India
Mail outward," were consigned to the hold as we rapidly
cleared the harbour and lost sight of the city. The impression
of the vast importance of our distant empire thus made, was
deepened by the character of the passengers on board : officers
returning after leave of absence, others going out for the first
time, veterans proceeding to distant governments, heads of com-
mercial houses and junior clerks, correspondents of news-
papers and restless tourists, together with an elegant Indian
prince, who, tempted by the facility of intercourse, had visited
England, and was now returning, and a young widow of Bom-



.



12



A SHIP RUN DOWN.



bay, whose weeds looked too becoming to allow the anticipation
that they would be either renewed or over-worn, made up the
company, all disposed, at this distance from home, to dispense
with introductions, and to amalgamate cordially into one
temporary family.

The weather was at first beautiful, but on the second day be-
came squally. We passed the rude wild mountains of Sardinia ;
the wind sunk, but left a heavy swell, which kept me awake to
a late hour in the night: suddenly I was alarmed by a loud
noise on deck, much stamping, and cries of " Back her : " evi-
dently some disastrous event was momentarily expected ; but
whether we were about to run down a fishing boat, or were
ourselves on the point of being crushed into the ocean depths by
the keel of some monster ship of the line, was all uncertain. I
leaped from my berth, and was groping across the cabin when


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