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EuOlIf Si Xw7HK p'oSiflSOOJ £UKf/U.j3oAi|
©owe Se Ttxhcs n<rxv ixpaviis iSew.
IlaJaf, fwaixaf, flswv Te nxifiiam iSn,
"The morn, all beauteous to behold,
Drawn by white steeds, bounds o'er the enlighten'd earth; At once from ev'ry Greek, with glad acclaim Burst forth the song of war, whose lofty notes The echo of the island rocks return'd, Spreading dismay thro' Persia's hosts thus fallen From their high hopes; no flight this solemn strain Portended, but delib'rate valour, bent On daring battle; whilst the trumpets' sound Kindled the flames of war. But when their oars, The Pa?an ended, with impetuous force Dash'd the resounding surges, instant all Rush'd on the view; in orderly array The squadron on the right first led, behind Rode their whole fleet; and now distinct we heard From ev'ry part this voice of exhortation; "Advance, ye sons of Greece, from thraldom save "Your country, save your wives, your children save! "The temple of your Gods, the sacred tomb "Where rest your honour'd ancestors; this day "The common cause of all demands your valour." Potter. The shores of Salamis, it must be observed, are visible from the Theatre of Bacchus.
'JSiichyl. Persse. 1. 38 J. See also Lysias's eloquent description of the battle (Orat. Fun. p. 9!). Ed. Reiske) which I cannot but admire in spite of the sneers of Isocrates. (Panegyr. p. 169. Ed. Battie.)
1. 196. What inspired orator ] The assemblies of the people, though generally held in the Pnyx, were, on affairs of great importance, summoned to the Theatre of Bacchus.'
I. 214. Clenched palm of thought.} The ancients used the simile of a closed hand to express conviction by reason; of an open one to denote persuasion by eloquence.
Zenoquidem ille a quo disci pi ina Stoicorum est, manu demonstrare solebat. quid inter has artes (Dialecticam scil. et Eloquentiam) interesset. Nam cum compresserat digitos, pugnumque fecerat, Dialecticam aiebat ejusmodi esse: cum autem diduxerat et manum dilataverat, pal mae illius similem eloquentiam esse dicebat.'
I. 222. The modem son of Greece.] 'The oppression which the Greeks 'suffer is unquestionably dreadful. A Turk may kill a Greek without being 'detained to answer for the crime. On the day of my visit to Livadia, a 'Turk entered the house of a Greek, and attempted forcibly to take away his 'wife. The Greek naturally resisted, and the Turk shot him dead on the c spot. He was not secured, but suffered to depart. The only measures taken 'in consequence were, that application was made to Ali Pasha for liberty to 'punish the offender, which would probably not be attended to, unless 'the petition was backed by a large bribe. A Turk may seize by force the 'wife, son, or daughter of any Greek, and this is perpetually done by Ali 'Pasha. In addition to these sufferings, they are robbed of the fruits of 'their industry by the heavy contributions which they are obliged to pay to 'the Pashas.
'Under these circumstances, can it be wondered that genius and spirit * are almost extinct; and that their thoughts are solely occupied with the 'miseries which they endure, and the means of evading as much as possible 'the cruelty of their tyrants? Talents can never be exerted with effect, except 'where the mind enjoys perfect tranquillity; and courage is only displayed 'where there exists a conviction, that there is something worth gaining or 'defending. In the case of the Greeks, we find neither of these incentives 'to action, and they are in consequence sunk into a state of indifference and
7 See Demosthenes de Pace, where he alludes to this custom.
* Cic. Orator.
'lethargy. How far a mild and equitable government would restore them 'it is not easy to determine; the experiment may perhaps, at no very distant 'period, be tried.
'In personal'appearance the Greeks are a fine manly race, of athletic form, 'and generally possessing marked and intelligent countenances. In common 'discourse the lower orders are particularly emphatic. The variation of their 'features, their different gestures, and extreme eagerness, strike all foreigners, 'but particularly Englishmen, whose mode of address is certainly very remote 'from Greek energy. Their looks and voice in conversation are so very im'passioned, that to a bystander ignorant of the language, two Greeks engaged 'in friendly discourse would frequently appear to be the bitterest enemies. 'The women do not yield to the men in this particular, and their volubility 'of tongue exceeds any thing I ever heard.
'The Greeks are naturally merry and lively, and their mirth, in spite of 'their miseries, breaks forth at every favourable opportunity. They are fond 'of singing and dancing, and at the festivals of some of their saints they 'parade the streets with music, and indulge themselves in various kind of riot. 'Their marriages too are celebrated with great joy, with music, feasting, and 'dancing; and the first day of Spring is also hailed with peculiar festivity.
'The manner of living amongst the Greeks is simple and uniform. They 'take a slight breakfast of coffee early in the morning, dine at mid-day, and 'sup at seven or eight. They do not reckon their hours as we do, but begin,
* as the Romans did, from six o'clock, and call seven, one. In my tour through 'Greece, in the principal towns, I was generally lodged at the houses of the 'richest Greeks. Some of them live very well, and even splendidly. Logo
* thete's establishment at Livadia is quite sumptuous. At an entertainment 'which he gave to a friend of mine, every dish (and the number was very 'considerable) was brought to the table by a different female domestic. Our 'host at loannina, Alexi Nutzo, also lived in a costly style.
'In the Greek mode of living there are several particulars which recall to 'one's mind the customs of the ancients. As soon as a stranger arrives at a 'house, and has been conducted into an apartment, a servant, generally a 'female, brings a basin, an ewer, and a towel, and kneels down whilst he 'washes his hands. The vessels are not indeed made of gold and silver, as in 'former times, but in other respects Homer's picture is accurate:'
Xff w(3a S' xfA$iiroXos Ttgo^ou tirtxtvt pifttirae
'In all the first houses this ceremony is performed before and after meals. 'Dinner they eat after the ancient manner, reclining on sofas: a very small * kind of stool or table, a little higher than the sofa, is set before them: it may 'be called the tripod, which, we learn from Athenaeus, was always used at 'feasts. On this stool, or tripod, a large round metal salver is placed, and on 'this the dishes are served. At our daily repasts at loannina the cook always c made his appearance, and called to my recollection the lines of Homer:
Axflgos Se xpuw mvxxxt irxgtQwev xeipxs
'Most of the rich Greeks are either merchants or possessors of lands, which 'they generally farm themselves. Our host at loannina was proprietor of 40 'villages in the neighbourhood, which were cultivated by his domestics. The 'Greeks are naturally addicted to traffic, and a mercantile kind of life, which 'the Turks despise. The former have therefore almost the whole of the com'merce of the country in their own hands. If the Turk is possessed of lands 'he generally lets it to the Greek, who makes his profit on the produce. Spe'culation of any kind is quite foreign to the character of the Turk, and he is 'by his education (or rather want of education) and mode of life totally 'disqualified for the activity requisite in a merchant. Most of the Greeks 'who have not the active occupations of business to engage them, pass their 'days in the most listless and indolent manner; they do not occupy them'selves in reading, or any kind of study, and (except at loannina) I met with 'very few in my tour who possessed any information, or engaged themselves 'in any thought beyond the occurrences of the day. Some had a slight 'acquaintance with the history of their country, its former state and glories; 'but their ideas were vague and imperfect. On all other subjects their igno'ranee is equally flagrant, and they in consequence ask the most absurd and 'childish questions. From the continual oppression which they suffer their 'spirit and character are now so sunk that it would perhaps be impossible to 'reclaim them. This oppression has had a most pernicious effect on their 'moral character, and rendered them knaves as well as slaves. They are