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

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102

THE CRESCENT AND THE CROSS.

[chap. x.

vourable, and I saw the bridal procession move off with regret
for their disappointment: I would willingly have furnished the
necessary expenses, but I confess I grudged them to the ill-
favoured, harsh-spoken friar, who, perhaps after all, acted only
from necessity.

As, however, I had had some conversation with the Elders of the
party, I made an offering towards the dowry of the kaleidoscope,
and inquired whither they were going with her then : " to the
Santon,"* they replied, " who will do the business quite as well,
and only charge half-a-dollar."

When I returned to the convent, I found the priest still standing
at the door of the Latin convent, and ventured to inquire whether
this would not afford a dangerous precedent. " Not so," he said ;
"before a child is born, they'll come here to be married properly;
for they are respectable people, and would not have a Moslem
child for twice the money."

As soon as matins were ended, I waited on the Superior of the
Armenian convent, to pay my respects, and to thank him for his
hospitality. He was a fine-looking old man, with a very gra-
cious, though somewhat patronizing air. " We are always most
happy," he said, "to receive any friend of the Bishop of the Eng-
lish, and in future shall be happy to receive you on your own ac-
count." I offered the lay-brother the gratuity usually expected
at a convent; this he courteously declined, even when put in the
light of a charity for him to distribute among the poor. Finally,
I took leave of the Bishop, with feelings of gratitude and respect
for him, and an increased interest in his mission.

* A Moslem friar or hermit
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