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Source of the Zaharani River.-Jurjûa.-Jebea.-Mountain Paths and
Rocks. — Jezzîn. — Beautiful situation. - Villagers. - Cross the High
Passes of Lebanon at Tomat Niha.-Magnificent Views.--'Ain-Tineh.
-El-Kûweh, the natural bridge over the Leontes.-Temple Ruins at
Tell-Thata.-Again Dr Robinson.-Travelling difficulties.—Aiteh.—
Anti-lebanon.-First View and Impression of Damascus.-Arrival in
the Metropolis of the East.-Short stay in Damascus.—Tour by the
way of Zebedani and Baalbec to Hermel.-The Vale of Colo Syria
(el-B'káâ).—The Monument of Hermel.-Sources of the Orontes.—
Deir-Mar-Marûn. - Travels through the Northern Regions of Le-
banon.-Splendid Forests.-Merj-Ahîn.-Snow Patches.-Jebel Mus-
kich the highest top of Lebanon.-Views from these high Ridges.—
The Cedars.-Besherreh.--Akûra.-Afka.-Fountain of the Adonis
River. Antiquities.-Sources of the Nahr-Kelb.-Fokkrah.-Ajeltûn.
Back again in Beirût.—Last trial, attack of Syrian fever.--Deliverance.
The Lake of Tiberias,
Opposite Title Page.
JOURNEY THROUGH SYRIA AND PALESTINE
IN 1851 AND 1852.
TOUR TO THE DEAD SEA, and through THE SOUTHERN PARTS OF JUDEA.
WADI URTAS (SOLOMON'S GARDENS),
"He who on God his burthen lays
YES, my friend, this day has again presented a striking proof of the above. Could you receive this letter at the same time with that which I despatched at noon to you from Jerusalem, you could hardly believe that my circumstances should have been so changed in a few hours. At present, in consequence of having received the letters that were sent off to you, you will be thinking that no doubt I shall soon return, and stand before you, disheartened and disappointed,—and behold, there is nothing less likely than that. On the contrary, my investigations are now entering on what may be the most important part of my whole journey. But I must at once satisfy your curiosity with respect to the causes that have produced so sudden a change.
I shut up my letter-book, took the lines I had written to you to the British consulate, again inquired of Mr Danous if he was sure there were no letters for me, got the answer-Oh! I am quite sure of it, sir!—and rode out at the Jaffa-gate. My mind was quite composed. The Lord gave me full confidence in His wise and watchful love. Had not I always found throughout my whole journey,-nay, throughout my whole life, that "His eye was upon me?" So, then, I rode down the footpaths along the slope of the Valley of Gihon, then turned round towards the left, away by the side of the Lower pool, on the further side of the valley, and had just once more assured myself of my being on the right road by asking one of the passers-by if this was the way to Bethlehem, when I heard some one calling after me, "Ya chawadja, chawadja!" It was one of the servants of the consulate who was running after me, to say that two gentlemen were at Mr Finn's, who were very desirous to speak with me. Two gentlemen, thought I; who can these be? But come, let me go back for a little: Bethlehem is at no great distance, and a good part of the day is yet before me. In a few minutes I had returned to the consulate, and there found Dr Beima, of Leyden, an old friend and fellow-countryman, who, in company with one of his friends, was on a journey to the East, and had been some days in Jerusalem without either of us being aware of the other's residence there. While examining the small cabinet of curiosities at the British consulate, he had learned from Mrs Finn that there was another Netherlander in Jerusalem. My name had been mentioned and recognized, and a ser
vant who had seen me ride out of the Jaffa-gate was instantly at my heels to call me back to see my Netherlands friend. You may well imagine how heartily we shook each other by the hand. In a few moments we mutually communicated to each other our adventures in Palestine, as well as our future travelling arrangements, and the idea of being able to combine these presented an alluring prospect to me. Nevertheless, our different interests called us too far apart. Again we shook hands. "Well," said my friend, "is it not strange that we" (he and his companion) "are the first Frieslanders that, so far as is known, have trodden the Holy Land since the time of the Crusades?"
"You do well, my dear Dr B.," I rejoined, "to add, in so far as is known.""
"I, too, have had the privilege of being born in Friesland, and I have already been some months in Palestine. But I hope this disappointment in your boast you will not consider the worst you meet with in your journey. May the Lord be with you, and make your way happy and prosperous! Farewell, my hearty
"Farewell, my friend," he replied, "farewell!"
While we were thus parting, the servant stood waiting until our farewells should be over, and then handed me a packet of letters, with the words, Heida katib chawadja! (Here are letters for you, sir !)
"Letters! and one, two, three, four, all at once! where come these from?"
"From the post, sir!"