Universitätsbibliothek HeidelbergUniversitätsbibliothek Heidelberg
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One of these impediments arose from the rebellion, which, at that time,
continued to put the whole country in disorder. Tho' they had not ceased to
cut off heads every day, and to butcher, without mercy, all the rebels that the
government was able to seize, yet there still remained a considerable number,
who had joined themselves to the Arabs: even the ringleader of them, whose
name was Salem Cachef, and who was reported to be dead, in order to quiet
the populace, had escaped the most diligent search that could be made, and had
married the daughter of an Arab schech. Under the shelter of this protection,
he plundered and murdered all that came from Cairo, insomuch that if we
went with the caravans, the pasTage was absolutely insecure; and if we took
the method of going upon the Nile, the barks did not run a less hazard.
The second impediment to my journey was occasioned by a iickness, which
I did not take much notice of at the beginning. I imputed it solely to the air
os the country,, which I imagined to disagree with my constitution: I flattered
myself, however, in a little time to reconcile myself to it. But the affair became
at length very serious: in a few days the disorder shewed itself to be a true peri-
pneumony. It confined me to my bed for more than two months, and gave me
great disquietude: more particularly, because I was lodged in an inn, that was
notorious for troublesome riots. I am going to mention one, that had like to
have cost us dear; but which had a more happy success than could be expected.
When a Stranger arrives in Egypt, theyprescribeto him two fundamental rules,
the observance of which is necessary to all the Francs, in order to be secure in the
country. The first enjoins, to avoid all occasions, where the Turks may
have the least pretence for coming to a quarrel; and rather to bear slight insults,
than to venture an engagement with them : the second requires, that in case you
cannot avoid having a contest with a Turk, you ought to take great care how
you defend yourself; for if, unluckily, you happen to kill one of them, you
will certainly be destroyed. It would be impossible to escape the fury of those
who will endeavour to revenge his death, and who will be always aslured of
the aid of the greatest number, and of the support of justice, not to say of in-
justice itself.
I h a d always applied myself so carefully to the observance of the first of
these rules, that I had never been in a Situation to have need of the other. Yet
a certain fatality destined all those, who lodged in the inn where I was, to be
one day under a necessity of making use of both these rules: and even they
would not have been able to have preserved the whole house from destruction,
if it had not been for the courage of a lady, who defended herself in such a
manner as was indeed something strange and comical, but which happily suc-
ceeded so well, that me alone preserved all that were in the house.
This adventure happened on occasion of a public proceslion, or festival of
circumciiion; which, as was given out, would be more solemn than the greatest
part of the others, that we see here so often walking the streets. This was