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184

CHAP. IX.

OUR MOUNTAIN HOME.

THE village of Beit Miry runs along the top of a moun-
tain ridge, something more than 2000 feet above the
sea, which curves round in the form of a semicircle:
the peasants' houses slope down on either side of the
ridge, the Druzes mostly occupying the west, and the
Christians the east end. Our house was planted on the
end of the western horn, while the Christian Emir's house
and the Maronite chapel faced us at the end of
the eastern horn, just above a beautiful little pine-
forest, — the whole of the circle between being filled up
with curving mulberry terraces and a few of the best
houses. Beyrout is so charming till the end of June,
that the season of Beit Miry had not then commenced,
but by July eight or nine European families had taken
refuge from the heat of the town and arranged them-
selves somehow in three peasant houses; they were
miserable gites in themselves, only one other in the
place besides our own house being really a good one,
and that was not half as pretty as ours; but from
standing at the western extremity of the village it com-
manded the view in the northern valley as well as the
southern view of Beyrout, and in this respect was
certainly one of the finest spots in the whole of the
 
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