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way to numbers, and, for the first time after four hundred years of Mussulman rule, the Cross rose triumphant throughout the whole of Bosnia, Herzegowina and Upper Moesia; and so complete was the victory that if Milosh, Prince of Servia, had possessed a particle of ambition, or the ability to assume the part of a liberator, he might have added these important provinces to his own principality of Servia; in so doing, he would have performed an act of humanity towards the inhabitants, and in all probability have prevented the recurrence of similar scenes which took place at a later date. The ignoble peasant, no doubt dreading the consequences of an undertaking beyond his comprehension, turned a deaf ear to the entreaties of the people, by which he lost the esteem of the whole Servian nation, and was shortly after driven into exile. Sultan Mahmoud, who appeared to be actuated throughout the whole career of his administration by one governing principle—how, or by what means, he could best enforce upon the people his European reforms, now that the field was cleared of the most formidable among his enemies, at one stroke of his pen (or rather reed) abolished all the fiefdoms in Bosnia, together with the rights and privileges of the citizens of towns, to preserve which, the first renegades had bartered their faith and enslaved their country, by placing it under the rule of a Mussulman sovereign.
Previous to this arbitrary measure, the fiefdoms of Bosnia amounted to more than twelve thousand, under the names of Beglouks, Kapitanis and Spahaliks; and in time of war they could furnish upwards of seventy thousand warriors fully equipped for battle. A few years afterwards, intelligence of the sudden death of Sultan Mahmoud was received in Bosnia among the Slavo-Mussulmans with universal rejoicing; hundreds of chiefs, supposed to have fallen during the late insurrection, now came forth from their hidingplaces; in the meantime, the banner of the Zmai od Bosna again reared its ferocious head, and again the rallying cry of “Death to the Giaour !” was heard resounding from valley to mountain, in village and city, throughout the entire land; fortress after fortress was carried by assault; at the same time, the capital— Bosna-Serai, the stronghold of Islamism—having made common cause with the insurgents, the Nizam, with their allies, the Christians, sent against them by the Vizier, Vehighi Pacha, were beaten in every encounter, and the Vizier himself, having lost his last stronghold, the fortress of Travnik, was obliged to take refuge in the mountains with the remnant of his army, now reduced to about four thousand men. The Vizier Vehighi, who afterwards became so famous in the history of the insurrection of the SlavoMussulmans in Bosnia, was not a man to resign his important trust without a struggle; having secured a strong position in the mountains, and taken possession VOL. I. Y
of the defile of the Nitisch, which he defended with
defence of those passes and defiles in Herzegowina where it had no hope of seeing its supremacy acknowledged by these children of the mist. The Haiducs of Bosnia—which is merely the provincial appellation for the Ouskok of Herzegowina—have not been able to form themselves into so powerful a Christian community, the Slavo-Mussulmans, their countrymen, constituting the majority of the inhabitants; still, they equal in bravery and daring their brethren in Herzegowina; and, fortunately for the peaceable Rayah of the valleys and the plains, their strongholds in the mountains served as an asylum to protect them from danger during the continuance of those eternal revolutions, which have so demoralized and desolated unhappy Bosnia. But to return to the Vizier Vehighi. He was one of those remarkable men we occasionally see in Turkey, rising from the lowest grades in society, displaying military talent and capacity for governing, rarely surpassed by any of our master-minds in Western Europe; equal to the famous Grand Vizier Reschid Mehmet in all the arts of intrigue, he was far superior to him as a military commander; and if the Slavonians only possessed a tithe of the talent for scheming and intrigue inherent in the Greek and Asiatic Turk, their bravery would long since have won for them the sovereignty of European Turkey. Exhibiting both in their enmity and friendship that openness of character which knows no deceit, and with only one principle to actuate them —the justness of their cause—they rush to the encounter, no matter how strong may be the fortress, or powerful the enemy; and should they prove successful, they rarely take advantage of their position—a few honeyed words and promises from the man in power (always an Asiatic Turk) sufficing to quiet their fears for the future; and with that reliance on truth which forms the basis of their character, they disband their forces, and return to their homes, congratulating themselves on the great victory they have achieved. If to this we add the melange of religious sects—Greek, Latin and Mussulman—and consequently the absence of all unity of purpose among the inhabitants, particularly in Bosnia, we have enumerated the principal cause why this beautiful country, so strong in its mountains and easy of defence, has remained so long under the weak government of the Sultan. However, take them in the mass, the Bosnians, like their brethren the Servians, are a noble race, full of energy and good sense; and if they were once independent, and governed by a prince of their own choice, as we see in Servia, who knew how to conciliate the sectarians of each opposing creed, we feel confident that they are capable of arriving at a high degree of civilization. We have said that the Slavo-Mussulman insurgents had taken possession of the capital, Bosna-Serai, and of Travnik, the residence of the Vizier, together with the