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unpolished stones, hastily put together, without any attempt at architectural embellishment. This affected simplicity does not arise from poverty, for most of them are in easy circumstances, but entirely from prudential motives, it being found necessary not only to conceal their wealth, if they have any, from the jealous eye of their rulers, but even the appearance of comfort, which might lead to a suspicion of its possession. The interior distribution of these houses is nearly uniform throughout. A gateway opens into a quadrangular court, round which several distinct families often reside. The approach to the several apartments, which are usually on the first floor, the court being common to all, is by a stone-stair running up the outside wall.-In one of these we visited the Khakham, or chief rabbi. On entering a small low chamber, but neatly furnished, we found an aged patriarchal looking gentleman, seated on a divan, surrounded by a family of several generations. As we advanced, he made an effort to rise up to salute us, which we prevented. His aged eye, nevertheless, glistened with pleasure, as he welcomed us to his house a
welcome that was immediately put in practice, for no sooner had he ceased speaking, than making a sign to the younger females looking on, they retired, and in a few minutes afterwards returned with sweetmeats, rosolio, coffee and pipes. Our conversation was necessarily restricted to trivial subjects, the more interesting topics, such as religion and politics, not being touched upon, out of respect for our host and the persons present. We all felt more or less embarrassment, but if all had dared to speak out what they felt, what an interesting revelation of feelings would have been here put forth! Our party was composed of French and English, and they complimented us upon our nationality, in a way that made it evident, without saying it, that they looked upon us as the instruments in God's hands of their speedy deliverance from the yoke of their enemies. Would that it may be so,for there is something peculiarly affecting in the sight of this devoted race, living as strangers and slaves in the land of which they are the rightful owners; and he must have a cold heart indeed that can look on, and not sympathise with their suffer
ings. For my own part, 1 could not help, as I retired, uttering a prayer to the Almighty, that he would hasten the moment of reconciliation with his once chosen people, and remove the obstinacy that surrounds their hearts, by way of preparing them for its blessed results.
The well known peculiarities of this people, for they have long ceased to form a distinct nation, are observable in the Jews residing at Jerusalem; but in addition to these peculiarities, they have adopted others, belonging to the countries they respectively inhabited, previously to their coming to settle here. The more apparent feature contrasting with those of their brethren of the Levant, is a certain freedom of manners between the sexes, particularly observable in social intercourse; nevertheless, their women go veiled when abroad, a practice universally followed by their sex in the East, females of loose morals alone forming the exception. It consists in a white piece of muslin thrown over the head, which falls over their shoulders down to the hips, leaving the features, however, more exposed than is customary with Turkish women to do. The number of Jews resident in Jerusalem, has
been greatly exaggerated by some travellers. There being no trade or commerce whatever, they must necessarily be limited to the few families that are attracted here for devotional purposes. I do not think they exceed three thousand. Of this estimate a large proportion are females. The synagogues in Jerusalem are both poor and small, not owing to the poverty of the possessors, or the want of alms from abroad, but from the prudential motives mentioned above.
I was moved almost to a tear, by seeing just outside the great mosque, which stands on the site of their ancient temple, four or five Jews, apparently rabbis, with books in their hands, in the attitude of prayer, and their faces directed towards the wall. I fancied I heard them saying, "How long, O Lord," how long, shall we be the objects of thy just anger?" Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord." (Matt. xxiii. 39.) In this part of the wall are several large stones, evidently hewn at a very remote period, being cut in a peculiar fashoin. Some of them measure twelve or fifteen feet in length, by four or five in height. Can these be
some of the stones about which the disciples en
quired, Master, see what manner of stones are
Similar stones are
here?" etc. (See Mark, xiii. 1.) worked into other parts of the modern walls, particularly at the south-east angle. They do not bear upon them any marks of the action of the fire that consumed the original temple, at the time of the destruction of the city by Titus; which has made some travellers suppose they formed part of the materials prepared by Julian for the rebuilding of the temple, in the course of which he was interrupted, it is said, by flames issuing from amongst the ruins.*
By the time we reached our quarters in the Casa Nova, the convent dinner-bell had begun to ring. The hours of repast here, are the same as in all Eastern countries, viz. at noon and at sun-set. Our meals are regularly brought over to us from the
During the reign of Constantine the Great, the Jews made various efforts to rebuild their temple; which, however, were always frustrated; nor did better success attend the attempt made, A. D. 363, by the apostate emperor Julian. An earthquake, a whirlwind, and a fiery eruption, compelled the workmen to abandon their design.