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Illustrious Travellers who have visited the Pyra

mids— Audience of the Vizier-Voyage to Sac-
cara-Nocturnal Festivities of an Arab Village
-Appearance of the Country to the South of
Cairo-Indigofera-Situation of Memphis-
Tumulus seen among the Pyramids- The most
antient Sepulchres not pyramidal-Village of
Saccara-Difference between the Pyramids of
Saccára and those of Djiza-Descent into the
Cutacombs-- Notion founded on a passage in He-
rodotus-Evidence for the Horizontal Position
of the Bodies-Difficulty of ascertaining the
truth— Repository of Embalmed Birds--Cause
of their IntermentHieroglyphic Tablet-An-
telope - Antiquities found by the Arabs - Horses
of the Country-Theft detected— History of the




Pyramids- Manner of the Investigation- Age of those Structures --Their Sepulchral OriginPossible Cause of the Violation of the principal Pyramid-Historical Evidence concerning the building of Pyramids in Egypt-. Further view of the subject-Hermelic Stéle-Mexican Pyramids.


chap. It is impossible to leave the Pyramids of Djiza

without some notice of the long list of PhilosoIllustrious phers, Marshals, Emperors, and Princes, who, who have in so many ages, have been brought to view the Pyramids, most wonderful of the works of man. There

has not been a conqueror pre-eminently distin-
guished in the history of the world, from the
days of Cambyses down to the invasion of
Napoleon Buonaparte, who withheld the tribute
of his admiration from the Genius of the place.
The vanity of Alexander the Great was so piqued
by the overwhelming impression of their ma-
jesty, that nothing less than being ranked
among the Gods of Egypt could elevate him
sufficiently above the pride of the monarchs by
whom they were erected. When Germanicus
had subdued the Egyptian empire, and seated
"a Roman præfect upon the splendid throne of
the Ptolemies,” being unmindful of repose or of
triumph, the antiquities of the country engaged



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all bis attention'. The humblest pilgrim, pacing CHAP.
the Libyan sands around them, while he is con-
scious that he walks in the footsteps of so many
mighty and renowned men, imagines himself to
be for an instant admitted into their illustrious
conclave. Persian satraps, Macedonian heroes, ,
Grecian bards, sages, and historians, Roman
warriors, all of every age, and nation, and reli-
gion, have participated, in common with him,
the same feelings, and have trodden the same
ground. Every spot that he beholds, every
stone on which he rests his weary limbs, have
witnessed the coming of men who were the
fathers of law, of literature, and of the arts.
Orpheus, Musæus, Homer, Lycurgus, Solon, Py-
thagoras, Plato, Plutarch, contributed by their
presence to the dignity of the place. Desolate
and melancholy as the scene appears, no tra-
veller leaves it without regret, and many a
retrospect of objects which call to his mind such
numerous examples of wisdom, of bravery, and
of virtue. To this regret, on our part, was
added the consciousness that

had now


(1)“ Cæterum Germanicus aliis quoque miraculis intendit animum, quorum præcipua fuere Memnonis saxea effigies, abi radiis solis icta est, vocalem sonum reddcus: disjectasque inter et vix pervias arenas, instar inontium eductæ Pyramides, certamine et opibus regum." Tacit. Annal. lib. ii. c. 6. tom. I. p. 306. Paris, 1682.


CHAP. reached the utmost limit of our travels in this

interesting country; for, with the exception of a visit to the Pyramids of Saccára, our journey towards the south was here terminated. We had now traversed about forty degrees of latitude, and principally by land ; through countries, however, in which little of the refinements of civilized nations had ever been experienced : and we returned from Djiza to Cairo, to conclude our observations in Egypt, previous to the rest of our travels in Greece.

The next day we all dined with Signor Rosetti, who sent a messenger to the Sheik of the Bedouin Arabs at Saccara, stating that we were desirous of seeing the Pyramids and Catacombs of that place, and begging to be informed on what day we might find guides and horses ready for us.

On the following evening, August the twenty-fifth, his answer arrived. The Sheik sent two men of his tribe, one to conduct us, and the other to return with our message, fixing the time for our visit. The Arab who was to be our conductor ran away,

but we procured another who happened to be then in Cairo. In all the great houses of this city, the earthen vessels for containing water are perfumed. This becomes quite a ceremony. They


first put into the vase some mastic, and a sub- CHAP.
stance called Makourgourivic, which is brought
from Upper Egypt. The name is written as it
was pronounced; but perhaps it consists of
more than one word. They then clarify the
water with almond-paste, cool it by the eva-
porating jars, and thus it is made fit for

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On the twenty-seventh we purchased every variety of seed which we could obtain from the gardeners of Cairo. After this we visited a manufactory of sabres, wishing to learn the art by which the Mamaluke blades are ornamented with a sort of clouded work. Sabres thus enamelled are said to be damascened, from the city of Damascus, where this work is carried on in the greatest perfection. We saw the artificers use a red liquid for this purpose, which appeared to be some powerful acid, from the caution they observed in touching it; but they would not allow us to examine it.

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We then paid our long-promised visit to the Audience Vizier. This venerable man had lived so much Vizier. with our artillery officers, that he entertained very sincere regard for them.

We made our appearance before him in company with Colonel

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