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mildness of the summer, and the richness of the autumn, all united in the adjacent meadows, watered by the moisture, presenting to the gratified eye, flowers, fruits, green-plots, and harvest. .
The deep excavations made in the bason, as well as in the canal adjoining Alexandria, have furnished soil for the cultivation of vegetables for the supply of Alexandria. These barren tracts, under the judicious government of Méhémed Ali, will soon be converted from the desert into a fruitful garden, irrigated by a continual moisture from the adjacent waters. Lands have been purchased, and are now cultivating with every prospect of rich vegetation Plantations of olive trees, and the attention directed to the rearing of the silk worm, will soon spare Méhémed Ali the expense of sending abroad large sums of money for the purchase of oil and silk, as both, under his present encouragement, will become abundant and indigenous productions. Plants from every country in the world have been purchased at great expense; and all branches of agriculture are in a flourishing state of improvement. Rich plantations of Indigo have succeeded wonderfully, which heretofore yielded no advantage to the Egyptian cultivator.
By the introduction of new instruments of agriculture, Méhémed Ali has made a great progress, and has increased production, more than could have been reasonably expected, among a people wedded to ancient customs, and who hold it disrespectful to their forefathers to alter the customs and usages transmitted to them by their ancestors.
Cotton and sugar are now successfully cultivated, and the Vice-Roy has had the address to convert many of the Bedoweens into agriculturists, by encouraging them to settle in Egypt. and attend to the production of grain, instead of following their predatory excursions, the general occupation of the inhabitants of the Deserts. Thus has he converted a set of vagabond robbers into a body of useful subjects, who are every day increasing the agricultural riches of Egypt. In the sandy districts are found fields of water melons and cucumbers, so grateful to the thirsty traveller from the Desert. On the other hand, where the soil is more vigorous, the land is covered with date trees, sycamores, citron, pomegranates, orange and tamarind, banana and acasia trees, and vines.
Méhémed Ali encourages commerce, industry, and the arts; he protects them by his authority, and vivifies them by his speculations. Improvement, however, among these Arab Egyptians, a people wedded to the practices of their forefathers, for which their superstitious veneration is notorious, does not make that rapid
progress that it does in some European countries. All places of trust in this country are confided to Turks, who, cold, quiet, and unreflecting, smoke their long pipes from morning till night, without being interrupted in their nonentity by one mental reflection. That activity of mind which exercises the talents of the European, is unknown to the Mussulman, who, satisfied with what he possesses, neither invents nor improves anything. His life resembles an uninterrupted sleep, whilst ours appears to him a continual intoxication. He tranquilly enjoys the good which nature offers to him, without anticipating the morrow, whilst we are occupied in pursuing the happiness which flies. from us, and escapes our pursuit. What the tyranny of habit. and the impulse of circumstances will do for such people is too evident to need explanation. .
Tobacco of Syria is taken to Damietta and bartered for rice and coffee, which the Syrians again exchange in upper Syria for cottons and oils. The tobacco imported into Egypt may be calculated at thirty cargoes of 200 tons each. The port of Bayrout supplies Cairo with agricultural produce, cotton and silk, in exchange for coffee and tobacco. Jaffa sends soap to Egypt for its own consumption, and receives back the rice necessary for the consumption of Jerusalem. Cotton and dates come down the Nile from Lower Nubia to Alexandria, where the Nubians exchange them for salt, tobacco, and linen.
The Bedoween Arabs bordering on Egypt, and the Nubians also, exchange their produce and industry for that of Egypt.'
Slaves coming from Abyssinia, or elsewhere, pay an iniportation duty on entering Egypt, the duty is levied at Kêné, and is one dollar on a man, two on a woman, and four for a male child.
The potteries of Balass and of Kêné, and particularly those porous vases which clarify and cool the water, are sold all over Egypt, in Syria, and in the islands of the Archipelago, where they are in general use *..
If this uninterrupted and reciprocal exchange of the superfluous for the necessary were once impeded, the existence of all these nations would be compromised. This truth, always present to the mind of Méhémed Ali, regulates his conduct.
The caravans from Mecca and the shores of the Red Sea, bring merchandize from India and the productions of Arabia into Egypt. Those from Sébona, Sennaar, Dongola, and Dar
* It is remarkable that the same porous yases are manufactured in Western Africa, and of the same form as they are represented in the Egyptian bierogly. phics, and used for the same purposes as they were in the days of the Pharaohs. Jackson.
foor, bring merchandize from Abyssinia, Ethiopia, and Sudan, and take away the produce of the Egyptian soil and European manufactures. As Mecca is the point of contact, or link of the chain of communication between India and Egypt, so is Darfoor between Timbuctoo and other countries of Sudan. The Darfoor caravan departs from Siouth near the western branch of the Nile, and performs its journey thence to Dongola in twenty days; from Dongola to Darfoor in twenty days; from Darfoor to Timbuctoo in one hundred days.
The caravans which arrive at Kêné, situated on the eastern branch of the Nile, perform their journey to Kosseir on the shores of the Red Sea in forty-one hours. Throughout this journey there are springs in the desert, which relieve considerably the fatigues of the traveller *
Here follows an interesting description of a procession and feast given by Ptolemy Philadelphus, to demonstrate to the Egyptians the advantages of the trade of Egypt with India and other countries; in this procession, the singular variety of costumes of the different nations, then trading with Egypt, is detailed, each party carrying the merchandize of his respective country. This description is too long for our limits, and too interesting to be curtailed ; after which our author concludes thus :
i “Let us add to all these articles of merchandize the following produce of various countries, and we shall have a rich nomenclature of the merchandize brought in those days by the caravans into Egypt. Shawls of Cashmere ; muslins of Bengal; figured cloths of Indostan ; porcelain of China ; Indian pearls, together with various other articles, the produce of Asiatic industry. To encourage and increase arts, sciences, and commerce, Méhémed Ali favours all artists, mechanists, and men of talent and industry of every kind, so that manufactories of soap, refineries of sugar, distilleries of rum, and all kinds of liquors, are now established, and are flourishing in Egypt."
In ancient times Egypt carried on an extensive commerce with India; the canal dug by Sesostris to unite the Nile with the Red Sea, the construction of the canals under Ptolemy Philadelphus for the same object, the military route to Bérénice, and the foundation of that city, are alone proofs of it. Under the Roman emperors this commerce was continued, from the great advantages which it offered to all who engaged in it. The Bishop of Avranches assures 'us, that in the
* This journey is performed on a heirie, or swist camel of the dosert, ia fifteep hours.
days of Pliny this commerce yielded an annual profit of upwards of twenty millions STERLING, and that regular caravans were established between Egypt and India.
Méhémed Ali has opened a communication with India, particularly with Bombay, whence he draws all the manufactures of India, which come to him by the Red Sea to Suez, where he has established his agents and depôts. Itis reported, however, that several large ships, with rich cargoes belonging to the Vice-Roi, have been lost in the Red Sea, and as the Mussulmen never insure, have been a total loss to the amount of one million STERLING in the five years last past, Notwithstanding which, the energy and vigilance of Méhémed Ali are not diminished but excited.
It appears that the commerce of France with Egypt has diminished considerably. . .“ In 1816, of one hundred vessels which entered the port of Alexandria, ninety at least were French. It is very different now ; for out of one hundred vessels, ten only are French." The Austrian flag has supplanted that of France, and Germany has raised a commerce with Egypt on the ruins of that of the French. . · Méhémed Ali pays the tribute to the Sublime Porte, which was settled by the treaty between the Sultan Selim and the four and twenty Beys of Egypt in 1517, viz. two millions of francs, which are sent annually to Constantinople, and two millions to Mecca, to be distributed among the priests and the poor pilgrims of that city and of Medina.
“ The Vice-Roi continues to explore the emerald mines, which have been neglected during so many ages. He has lately received the produce of those mines, amounting to ten pounds of emeralds."
It is suggested, that a knowledge of the Coptic language, “ denominated by the most correct travellers Elsan Farawan *, might lead to the interprétation of the hieroglyphics in Egypt.” If so, the Coptic would be the first among the learned languages.
“ The primitive language is lost; the alphabetical characters cannot be found; the : hyeroglyphics are unintelligible ; all the symbols are mute; all the allegories inexplicable. And although the ancient Egyptians, to transmit to future nations the events which have rendered them most celebrated among the nations of the earth, have engraved their memorials on the most durable edifices, yet have they left no trace behind them by which we can ascertain any information
• An Arabic term, signifying the language of Pharaoh. Jackson,
respecting their origin, their institutions or their manners, because we have not been yet able to guess what language they spoke, what laws they followed, or what is their history."
Méhémed Ali is described, as throwing off the oriental etiquette, and appearing with all the urbanity and intelligence of an European,
“ The expression of his physiognomy, the intelligence of his eyes, the aptness of his gestures, the kindness of his anticipations, animate, always his communications, and diminish at least, if they do not altogether annihilate, that cold intolerable monotony necessarily thrown over a negociation by the intervention of an interpreter, or the service of a drogman, or forced interlocutor.”'
Under the Mamelukes, the evils of Egypt were multiplied. With the Baharite Mamelukes, about the middle of the fourteenth century, commenced the strangers' reign in Egypt. These were dethroned by the Circassian Mamelukes. It is difficult to tell which of them were the worst. Seven and forty tyrants, (for to call them kings would be profaning the majesty of the throne), succeeded one another, during the period of two hundred and sixty-seven years, carrying in their train the storms inseparable from anarchy and revolution, and ruling during all this period with absolute power, and the most unqualified tyranny.
The misery necessarily attending such a domination is gradually subsiding under the sway of Méhémed Ali, whose courage and talents will fulfil the destinies of Egypt; he will raise himself to that pinnacle of glory and renown which Egypt would desire to reach. Agriculture and commerce made free are alone sufficient to make the country flourish and to enrich it.
" When her ports are open to all nations, her ships navigating in every sea, when the government protects the arts, promotes industry, and favours discoveries, Egypt cannot fail to recover a portion of its ancient celebrity, and the prince who governs it will receive the price of his various efforts, in the gratitude of the people, who will raise the glory of his administration above that of all his predecessors."
This work concludes with thirty pages of interesting notes, in elucidation of the work.