« PreviousContinue »
C. Pætus (by Vespasian)
M. A. Julianus ........................(cir.) 70 L. Maximus................................................................................ }) 72
use of travellers. These are called by the Turks kanes, and are seated sometimes in the towns and villages, sometimes at convenient distances upon the open road. They are built in fashion of a cloister, encompassing a court of thirty or forty yards square, more or less, according to the measure of the founder's ability or charity. At these places all comers are free to take shelter, paying only a small fee to the kanekeeper, and very often without that acknowledgment. But you must expect nothing here but bare walls; as for other accommodations of meat, drink, bed, fire, provender, with these it must be every one's care to furnish himself' (pp. 1, 2). He mentions a very large and handsome khan near the Orontes, far exceeding what is usually seen in this sort of buildings. It was founded by the second Cuperli, and endowed with a competent revenue, for sup plying every traveller that takes up his quarters in it with a competent portion of bread, broth, and flesh, which is always ready for those who demand it, as very few people of the country fail to do. There is annexed to the kane, on its west side, another quadrangle, containing apartments for a certain number of almsmen. The kane we found at our arrival crowded with a great number of Turkish pilgrims, bound for Meccha' (4, 5).
GUESTCHAMBER is, in Mark xiv. 14. Luke xxii. 11, the English rendering of a Greek word, kataluma, which in Luke ii. 7 is Englished by 'inn.' By this same Greek word the Septuagint translate the corresponding Hebrew term mahlon, which is construed 'inn' (Gen. xlii. 27. Exod. iv. 24), 'lodging place' (Josh. iv. 3), and 'lodgings' (2 Kings xix. 23). In Jer. xiv. 8, we have the meaning of the terms expounded-'a wayfaring man turneth aside to tarry for a night; comp. Gen. xlii. 27. Exod. iv. 24. The original terms, then, denote a place where travellers might pass the night and take needful repose and refreshment. Inns, in the modern sense of the term, that is, places where lodging and food are supplied at a certain price, did not exist in Scriptural times. But in suitable places large buildings were erected, under which shelter might be had for the night, and where travellers in caravans, unpacking supplies that they carried with them, partook of refreshment, and then, on the same spot, gave themselves to sleep. In towns, houses of the larger size had in their centre an open court-yard, in which strangers received temporary lodgings and perhaps entertainment-not unlike the large open areas, with galleries on each of the four sides, found in the old inns (formerly town [in the city], residences of the landed gentry), of which specimens may still be seen in London. But hospitality was, as to place, not limited to the area of the open court. In Mark xiv. 14, a 'guestchamber,' or 'large upper room furnished and prepared,' receives Jesus and his apostles (comp. Luke xxii. 12. Acts xx. 8). Hence the term guestchamber, or inn, denotes hospitable accommodation in a private house, in which sense the passage in Luke ii. 7, speaking of the birth of the child Jesus, is to be understood.
The remarks of Maundrell are as true as they are quaint. It must here be noted, that in travelling this country, a man does not meet with a market town and inns every night, as in England. The best reception you can find here, is either under your own tent, if the season permit, or else in certain public lodgments founded in charity for the
The magnitude of some of these inns in former days may be judged of from the khan of Hasbeiya, near Cæsarea Philippi. It is a large and very ancient caravansary, in form a regular quadrangle, eighty paces square, with an eastern and western entrance. eastern entrance was originally ornamented in the Saracenic style. It still bears several Saracenic inscriptions. An elegant mosque was once attached to this khan. These large and expensive buildings, standing alone in the desert, and by the side of almost untrodden paths, add the sad testimony of their now almost dilapidated walls and unnecessary accommodations to the general signs of decay and desertion which meet the traveller at every step of his pilgrimage through Syria. There must have once been much more wealth to construct, and more travel
and trade to accommodate and protect, than now, or these establishments would never have been built.
In modern Palestine, something like our inns may be found in the medajeh, a sort of public-house, set apart for the reception of travellers. Each village in Palestine has one or more, where the guests take refreshment and sip coffee out of small cups in the oriental style. In those parts of the country not yet corrupted by the frequency of foreign travellers, the stranger is hospitably entertained by the inhabitants without the expectation of a reward. Of such liberality Robinson often partook.
The accommodation for travellers afforded even in the middle of Palestine is any thing but satisfactory. The traveller just mentioned thus describes a night he passed at Taiyibeh, on the north-east of Jerusalem :- A place was now selected and the tent pitched, and we obtained a supply of mats, lights, and eatables, from the village. We took this course both because we preferred our tent
to the small and uncomfortable dwellings of the inhabitants, infested as they are with vermin. The inhabitants crowded around us, with their sheik and three priests, until the tent was completely full, beside a multitude standing about the door. It was only by ordering the people away that we could get room to eat, and it was quite late before we could even think of sleep. At length, however, we made shift to arrange our couches, within somewhat narrow limits, and laid ourselves down. The captain, or responsible guard of the village, himself kept watch by our tent, accompanied by two or three others; and to beguile the night and keep themselves awake, they one after another repeated tales in a monotonous tone of voice. This served their own purpose, and had the further effect of keeping us awake; so that with the voices of the Arabs, the barking of dogs, the crawling of fleas, and the hum of musquitoes, we were none of us able to get much sleep all night' (see 'Companics Travelling ').
END OF VOLUME I.
C. Green, Printer, Hackney.