Warburton, Eliot
Travels in Egypt and the Holy Land, or, The crescent and the cross: comprising the romance and realities of eastern travel — Philadelphia, 1859

Page: 22
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License: Public Domain Mark Use / Order
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time) you pull up at a pretty khan,, where a trough of water
quenches your horse's glowing nostrils, and you can ask your way,
and light your pipe.* Thence by sandy paths, or rocky tracks,
through two or three flat-roofed villages, whose inhabitants sit
spinning silk in the shade of rustic colonnades ; and then we
reach the shore, bordered by thick jungle, or rocky steeps. As
the sun went down, we came to the river Damour, and encamped
for the night. Our tent and fire, and the stream that ran at our feet,
supplied all our wants ; but, some hundred yards off, there was
a khan, in and round which a noisy party of travellers were wait-
ing for the cool of morning to pursue their journey.

The next morning, as the sun rose over the Lebanon, we were
in motion, passing for some miles through mulberry gardens, and
over a dangerous rocky pass, where Antiochus the Great defeat-
ed the Egyptians, in 218 B.C. This pass would have required
the best exertions and courage of a European horse, yet a file of
camels was ascending it with the same patient look that they
wear in their native deserts. Though forced frequently to trav-
erse mountains in a country whose whole commerce is conducted
by their means, these animals are only at their ease upon the
sandy plain. The Arabs say, that if you were to ask a camel
which he preferred—travelling up or down hill, his answer would
De, " May the curse of Allah light on both !"

We forded the river Damour, which runs into the sea from a
beautiful valley among banks and islands thickly strewn with
oleander. In about two hours I halted under the shade of a
sycamore to wait for some officers of the Vernon, who had prom-
ised to accompany me as far as Djouni on my Jerusalem way.
Near us was a khan, whence we procured barley and water for

* These khans afford a mere temporary shelter to travellers m this part of
Syria, while in the south-east and in Egypt they are of immense extent, and
form receptacles for whole caravans, that bring hither their own forage and
provisions. In the latter case, they are frequently called " caravan-serai"—
" serai," or seraglio, meaning a palace or large house. In the former instance,
of which I speak here, the khan is a sort of public house, which generally sup-
plies barley for horses ; and pipes, coffee, sour milk, and water-melons for their
riders. They are scattered along the road at about half-day's journeys, or
from ten to fifteen miles apart
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