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النشر الإلكتروني

200

ARCHBISHOP BEHNAN.

on a slightly elevated ground, one mile from the city, in sight of the gardens, river Tigris, Jonah's tomb, and the snow-crowned mountains of Koordistan in the distance. Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord!

"THURSDAY, 13th.

"Have a very pleasant call from the Syrian Archbishop Behnan (Maphrian, see Mosheim). He wishes our assistance to secure justice to one of his Syrian people. We tell him there is an Evangelical Alliance at Constantinople, formed for this very object, and we would be glad to have him a member. Read to him the list of officers, the Dutch ambassador, Bishop Gobat, Mr Nicolayson. He replies, it is very good, and he will think of it. He says the Papists have much opposed his work. I answer, they have also opposed us in circulating the Bible. No Papists are members of this Alliance, only those who receive the Bible as their rule of faith. He says, Woe to

him that standeth alone, (see Jeremiah.) We are one if we are born of the Holy Spirit, one in Christ Jesus. Tell him our desire to introduce the Bible into his school. He will be very thankful to have them. A very excellent, evangelical, intelligent, and interesting archbishop of the (Oriental) Syrian church.

"In the evening have a meeting of the teachers of schools, and the boys who go from house to house to teach the natives, both men and women, to read, and instruct them in the Scriptures. A chapter is read in the Bible, questions asked, and an appropriate prayer offered by one of the teachers, and then we both addressed them on the importance of their work.

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"In the morning the kiljah of the Pasha calls. He is a very affable and courteous man. Tell him that my name originally signified Richter, Judge, cadi in Turkish, and in English it is Righter (Daha Dogree). He says, we love you for yourself, and still more for your name. I ask him for his name, and its signification. Ismidt (glory). Tell him I am happy to see that the glory of his name has not departed. His ancestors won glory, and mine justice and right. He was a fine specimen of a complimentary Turkish courtier.

"Engages to send us a bourneti and cavasses for our journey in the mountains.

"Then we arrange with our katergio. After we had finished our arrangements, to our great surprise, one of these rough muleteers burst forth with a volley of English words that perfectly amazed us.

"Ride out with the ladies just at sunset and golden twilight. The evening star, the purity of the western horizon bounding the desert afar, and Jupiter brilliant in the blue sky, formed a scene of picturesque beauty I shall never forget, more like heaven than a scene of earth.

"In the evening the Syrian archbishop sends us his servant to bear his Christian salutation, and a sermon on the Word of God, saying, that his mind has been spiritually stirred up by our visit, and he is more desirous than ever to be zealously engaged in the cause of Christ. The discourse was translated to us, and was an excellent scriptural sermon. We wrote his grace an epistle in behalf of Evangelical Christians in England and America, and requesting a copy of the sermon for publication;

202

WALLS OF NINEVEH.

also the archbishop's views on the 'all important doctrine of justification by faith.'

"SATURDAY, 15th.

"In the morning we ride across the floating-bridge on the Tigris, and then gallop on and around the walls of Nineveh. We set out at the tomb of Jonah, and riding upon the top of the wall, we came to the angle of the wall that commands a view down the river, at the south, toward Nimroud. Then we rode on, passing by the gateways at the sides, and came to an angle on the east that looks toward the snow-crowned mountains of Koordistan. The walls are still twenty feet high, and steep, wide enough for a horse to gallop on the top, though built of sun-dried bricks, and subject for two thousand years to the action of the elements and the hand of man; at the bottom they are at least forty feet wide. Passing northward, we observed at the side, traces of forming a wide trench between. We also distinctly marked gateways at intervals upon this side. In the centre a river flows directly through the city. On the northern angle there is a large mound, and also a palace gateway at the west, where huge winged bulls were found and sculptured slabs. The view from this point is beauti ful, up the winding river toward the distant mountains, as well to Mosul and the desert stretching far beyond. Then we rode to Koyunjuk, filled with excavations, and returned to our point of starting, Nebby Jonas.

an outer wall,

"The river originally, in all probability, flowed near the walls, and the gates were more frequent on the river side. The walls are now ploughed and sowed with grain, and Nineveh is also a ploughed field, and used as a place for spreading nets to catch birds. It was most interesting

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thus to circumvent the walls, and behold the complete desolation of this ancient city under the judgment of God. We occupied an hour and a half in our ride of eight miles. The air was pure and bracing, and much we enjoyed the

scene.

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Returning, we held a conference, by special appointment, with the Syrian archbishop, at the house of the English consul. He expresses a willingness to join the Evangelical Alliance. He also desires to leave the errors of his church, and unite with the Church of England, if he can meet with sympathy and support. Or he will give up all, if need be, and hire a chapel and there preach only the gospel and the Word of God. He seems to be very sincere, and we trust and pray that the Lord will abundantly strengthen him to do His will. It was a deeply interesting interview. In the evening made our final arrangements for departure on Monday.

"SUNDAY, 16th.

Attend Arabic service early in the morning, at the hour of sunrise. Mr Marsh preaches on the third commandment. It is a pleasant hour to meet together for the worship of God. At eleven Mr Jones gives us a sermon in English, 'My heart is fixed,' &c. Then we call upon the archbishop, and find him quite ill. He is unable to enter further into the subject of the Evangelical Alliance; wishes it to be carried forward in writing through Mrs Russam. He seems very sincere, and entirely disposed to take the Bible alone for his rule of faith, and the gospel for his hope of salvation. I tell him our prayer will be that the Holy Spirit may guide him in the way of all truth, and that we may meet in heaven at last. In

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the afternoon we have the communion service, when Mr Jones and I address them. It was a most interesting and solemn occasion. In the evening the native brethren meet at the house of Mr Marsh, and he questions them upon the preaching of the day, and conducts prayers in Arabic. Again they thank us for coming from England and America to visit them in the name of Christ.

MONDAY, 17th.

"The Pasha sends his salaams, and regrets that himself, defterdar, and suite could not escort us out of the city, as the post had just arrived.

"At noon the katugi and his animals come, and the cavasses, ready for our departure. We set out in due time, a highly respectable party in numbers and appearance. Dr Haskell joins us. The native brethren on foot accompany us, and our friend Houaza Yohanna, wearing his decoration, and mounted on his fine Arab mare, beautifully caparisoned, escorts us across the river and some distance beyond. A cavass from the Pasha, and four zabtiers as a guard, accompany us. My Arab steed, Emir, is in full spirit, and we gallop on beautifully over the plain. The snow-covered mountains are in front, tinged with purple light, and the whole western sky is flooded with golden light. The air is mild and genial, and much I enjoy it. Mr Marsh also joins us for the first night. Just at twilight we reach Tell Kef, a large town of 2000 inhabitants, all Papal Nestorians or Chaldeans (Mussulmans and Christians). We are most comfortable, in a large, well-finished room, with a good fire, and an excellent dinner.

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