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All things being thus in readiness for starting, we only awaited the arrival of our kiraidji, but on looking around, the only person we saw was a dirty-looking fellow, clad in garments quite covered with grease, and nearly so with patches. On inquiry as to what had become of Georgy, how great was our surprize to recognize him in the miserable tatterdemalion before us. Seeing our astonishment, he exclaimed :

“Ah, Gospodin' rags excite no envy in Turkey. My gaudy braided jacket and crimson shalwar might do well for Belgrade; but were I to travel with them among the haughty Arnouts of Bosnia and Albania, I should be certain to be half murdered, or at least every article of my dress cut to shreds with their poniards; for, remember, Gospodin, if Georgy is a free man in Servia, he is a rayah when he crosses the Turkish frontier. Here he may wear the costume of the lordly Arnout, the crimson shalwar and belt full of pistols, but there he must appear in the humble garments of the despised rayah.”

Nothing worthy of observation occurred during our first day's journey from Belgrade to Nissa. So long as we kept the Danube in view, the country was tolerably well cultivated, everywhere offering the most beautiful and extensive prospects. This continued till we commenced the ascent of the dreary heights of Mount Volodar, where we found ourselves not only exposed to a cold piercing wind, but a drenching rain—a sad predicament for travellers fresh from the luxuries of the West, and whose hopes of comfort, as to a night's quarter, is confined to the bare walls of an Oriental han. On arriving at the village of Colar, we found its only han occupied by a group of travellers busily employed in cooking their supper around a blazing wood fire in the centre of the room, a most agreeable sight to travellers wet, cold and hungry. Having spread our mats in a nook near the fire, and lessened the contents of our provender bags, we prepared to sleep by wrapping ourselves up in our cloaks; but, alas! fate had determined that our first day's journey should be one of annoyance, for the smoke having no other vent than the door, or a hole in the roof, the wind drove it back as fast as it tried to escape, rendering the atmosphere more dense than agreeable. From this torment we were at length relieved by a deluge of rain, which came pouring down the open chimney, and extinguished our fire. At any other time the position in which we were placed would have called forth a display of the lively wit of my travelling companion, but he had completely lost his spirits, not so much from the total absence of everything in the shape of comforts, as from fatigue, for unaccustomed to the Turkish saddle, and the jolting of the horse, he felt every bone in his body aching. His German servant, a journeyman shoe-maker, who probably never had mounted a horse in his life before, was even in a worse condition, kept moaning in a corner, invoking maledictions on Servia and all Servian saddles. Sleep, the panacea for so many pains and sorrows of body and mind, had so far restored my travelling companion, that the first cry of the kiraidji found him again prepared to meet the rough welcome of an Oriental saddle. The case was very different with the son of Crispin, who, deficient in moral courage, writhed and winced as he mounted his horse, like a culprit about being led to execution. Georgy, who was somewhat malicious in his fun, seeing the misery of the poor German, started at full gallop, brandishing his knout, and shouting with all his might: “Haidé! haidé!” Still the saddle of a kiraidji, notwithstanding its illrepute among Frank travellers, is not the instrument of torture they represent it, but like everything else, a man must serve an apprenticeship till he has discovered its advantages; for instance, its ample size covering the horse from head to tail, affords every facility for the equestrian to change his position; now he can ride à la Turque, then à l'European, and lastly, he can convert it into a lady's side-saddle, or take a nap if he is so disposed. As we advanced into the interior, the country became more wild and desolate, immense forests of oak everywhere met the eye, amongst these were several patches of cleared ground, just brought into cultivation, but instead of cutting down the trees to the root, four or five feet of each were left standing partially burnt,

looking like a regiment of black soldiers quartered in a corn-field. Husbandry the most slovenly, and neglect of everything that adds to the comfort of civilized life, is still the distinguishing feature in the character of a Servian peasant. The villages and hamlets, few and far between, were merely an assemblage of huts constructed of poles stuck in the ground, secured to each other with wickerwork, and plastered inside and out with clay, and then covered with reeds, or some description of sedge, to keep out the rain, with the everlasting hole in the roof to serve as a chimney. Attached to these villages and hamlets were vast sheds for the accommodation of their flocks and herds during the severity of winter, the whole encircled with a strong palisade, as a defence against the attack of the prowling wolf, and other beasts of prey. In some situations, for instance, on the undulating sides of a hill, we found some of these huts, simply excavated out of the earth, the soil above supported by poles, and beams of wood, as a roof while the hole in the centre, doing the duty of a chimney, served at the same time as a dangerous pitfall at our horses' feet, and as a medium for observing the movements of the family beneath. Still, however primitive might be these huts, I have frequently seen the lord and master issue forth with head erect, splendidly attired, and armed to the teeth, like some feudal lord of the middle ages, while the gentle Baba herself would be decorated with as many gold ornaments and gold coins as might VOL. I. D

suffice to furnish her daughter with a handsome marriage dowry. In point of fact, the Servian is both by principle and inclination a man of war; and now that he is free, he loves to decorate himself in all the warlike finery of the haughty Arnout, that so long trod him under foot. If you ask him, knowing that he has the means, why he does not build himself a more commodious habitation, he will answer by saying, that the war between the Turk and his own race has only commenced, and will never end till his brethren of Bosnia, Herzegowina, and Upper Moesia, are free, and concludes by telling you, that until then, it would be the height of folly to waste his money on an object so liable to destruction, in his next and not far distant struggle with his old enemy, the Turk. As we approached Hassan-Pacha-Palanka, the forests became more park-like in appearance, and the oak-trees far more majestic than any we had yet seen in Servia. We had also occasional vistas of the mighty Danube, winding its way to the Euxine through one of the most beautiful countries of forest, hill, dale, valley and ravine, that can be conceived. And as we skirted the steep side of the Raila Rika, now opening into a tiny plain, then contracting into a deep defile, and lastly, expanding into a beautiful valley, we had ample leisure for studying its vast resources as an agricultural district. At present droves of half wild pigs and goats, tended by shepherds, nearly as wild looking as their charge, wander over lands equally savage in appearance; and how melancholy

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