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veller obtains, derive much vividness from the number of minute vestiges surrounding him; and these are often even more striking to the fancy than the greater memorials of ancient art. Every point in and around Athens abounds with such vestiges; the fragments of columns, sculptured marbles, and Greek inscriptions. Scarcely a single house but affords some of these remains, more or less mutilated; yet all with some interest annexed to them, as the representatives of a past age. This familiarity and frequency with which classic names and images are brought before the eye cannot fail of interesting the attention; and it forms one of the most striking circumstances to the stranger in Athens.
The character of the landscape around the city is very peculiar, even without reference to any of the features that have been described. There is a certain simplicity of outline and colouring, combined with the magnificence of form and extent, which contributes much to this particular effect. It cannot be called a rich scenery, for the dry soil of Attica refuses any luxuriance of vegetation; and, excepting the great olive of the plain, little wood enters into the landscape.
Yet one of its most striking features is a sort ofrepose, which may be derived from the form of the hills, from their slopes into the plain, and from the termination of this plain in the placid surface of the gulf of Salamis; above all, perhaps, from the resting point which the eye finds in the height of the Acropolis, and in the splendid groups of ruins covering its summit. In this latter object there is a majestic tranquillity, the effect of time and of its present state, which may not easily be described, so as to convey an idea of the reality of the spot. The stranger will find himself perplexed in fixing on the point of view whence the aspect of these ruins is most imposing, or their combination most perfect with the other groups which surround them.
THE SCENERY OF THE ISLAND OF LEWCHEW.
The island of Lewchew is situated on the happiest climate of the globe. Refreshed by the sea-breezes, which, from its geographical position, blow over it at every period of the year, it is free from the extremes of heat and cold, which oppress many other countries; whilst from the general configuration of the land, being more adapted to the production of rivers and streams than of bogs and marshes, one great source of disease in the warmer latitudes, has no existence: and the people seemed to enjoy robust health; for we observed no diseased object, nor beggars of any description among them.
The verdant lawns and romantic scenery of Tinian and Juan Fernandes, so well described in Anson's voyage, are here displayed in higher perfection, and on a much more magnificent scale; for cultivation is added to the most enchanting beauties of nature. From a commanding height above the ships, the view is, in all directions, picturesque and delightful. On one hand are
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seen the distant islands, rising from a wide expanse of ocean, whilst the clearness of the water enables the eye to trace all the coral reefs, which protect the anchorage immediately below. To the south is the city of Nafoo, the vessels at anchor in the harbour, with their streamers flying; and in the intermediate space appear numerous hamlets scattered about on the banks of the rivers, which meander in the valley beneath; the eye being, in every direction, charmed by the varied hues of the luxuriant foliage around their habitations. Turning to the east, the houses of Kint-ching, the capital city, built in their peculiar style, are observed here and there, opening from among the lofty trees which surround and shade them, rising one above the other in gentle ascent to the summit of a hill, which is crowned by the king's palace; the intervening grounds between Napafoo and Kint-ching, a distance of some miles, being ornamented by a continuation of villas and country houses. To the north, as far as the eye can reach, the higher land is covered with extensive forests.
At a short distance from this eminence, the traveller is led by a foot path to what seems only a little wood; on entering which, under an archway formed by the intermingling branches of the opposite trees, he passes along a serpentine labyrinth, every here and there intersected by others. Not far from each other, on either side of these walks, small wicker doors are observed, on opening any of which, he is surprised by the appearance of a court-yard and house, with the children and all the usual cottage train generally gambolling about; so that, whilst a man fancies himself in some lonely and sequestered retreat, he is, in fact, in the middle of a populous, but invisible, village.
Nature has been bountiful in all her gifts to Lewchew; for such is the felicity of its soil and climate, that productions of the vegetable kingdom, very distinct in their nature, and generally found in regions far distant from each other, grow here side by side. It is not merely, as might be expected, the country of the orange and lime, but the banyan of India, and the Norwegian fir, the tea plant and the sugar-cane, all flourish together. In addition to many good qualities, not often found combined, this island can also boast its rivers and secure harbours; and last, though not least, a worthy, a happy, and a friendly race of people. Macleou.
DISCOVERY OF FIRE ON BOARD THE KENT, EAST INDIAMAN.
The activity of the officers and seamen of the Kent appeared to keep ample pace with that of the gale. Our larger sails were speedily taken in, or closely reefed; and about ten o'clock on the morning of the first of March, after having struck our topgallant yards, we were lying to, under a triple reefed main topsail only, with our dead lights in, and with the whole watch of soldiers attached to the lifelines, that were run along the deck for this purpose.
The rolling of the ship, which was vastly increased by a dead weight of some hundred tons of shot and shells that formed a part of its lading, became so great about half-past eleven or twelve o'clock, that our main chains were thrown by every lurch considerably under water; and the best cleated articles of furniture in the cabins and the cuddy * were dashed about with so much noise and violence, as to excite the liveliest ap- -prehensions of individual danger.
It was a little before this period that one of the officers of the ship, with the well meant intention of ascertaining that all was fast below, descended with two of the sailors into the hold, where they carried with them, for safety, a light in the patent lantern; and seeing that the lamp burned dimly, the officer took the precaution to hand it up to the orlop deck to be trimmed. Having afterwards discovered one of the spirit casks to be adrift, he sent the sailors for some billets of wood to secure it; but the ship, in their absence, having made a heavy lurch, the officer unfortunately dropped the light; and letting go his hold of the cask, in his eagerness to recover the lantern, it suddenly stove, and, the spirits communicating with the lamp, the whole place was instantly in a blaze.
I know not what steps were then taken. I myself had been engaged during the greater part of the morning in double lashing and otherwise securing the furniture in my cabin, and in occasionally going to the cuddy, where the marine
- • The cuddy in an East Indiaman is the large cabin or dining apartment, which is on a level with the quarter deck.