Chapter IV


member the Saviour's words, "When he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice." *

In the evening we visited the Consul, who had invited the Governor ofJerusalem to meet us. The Turk occupies the house said to have belonged to Pontius Pilate He came in, attired in full Eastern costume, a handsome young man, attended by three servants, one of whom carried his pipe. The servants remained in the room, near the door, and kept their eye on their master. On occasion of a slight motion of the hand, one of them stepped forward and took the pipe, and then resumed his place as before, watching his master's movements, as if to anticipate his wishes. This is the custom which we observed in Egypt f as illustrating Psalm exxiii, "Behold, as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters—so our eyes upon the Lord our God, until that he have mercy upon us."J He was very affable, and seemed highly entertained with examining our eye-glasses and watches. He drank wine with us also, probably to shew how liberal a high-born Mussulman can be.

In the evening we planned an excursion to Hebron, and next day (June 13) set out by 7 A. M., accompanied by the Consul and his lady, Mr. Nicolayson, and Mr. George Dalton. Some were mounted on mules, and some on horses; the saddles, as usual, broad and uncomfortable. Crossing the Vale of Gihon, we turned due south, and travelled over the fine plain of Rephaim. About three miles from the city, we came to a well, where tradition has fixed the scene of Matt. ii. 10. It is one of the few beautiful traditions associated with sacred places. The tradition is, that the wise men, who for some time had lost the guidance of the star which brought them from their country, sat down beside this well to refresh themselves, when one of their number saw the reflection of the star in the clear water of the well. He cried aloud to his companions, and " when they saw the

* John x. 4. A traveller once asserted to 8 Syrian shepherd, that the sheep knew the drcti of their master, not his voice. The shepherd, on the other hand, asserted it was the voice they knew. To settle the point, he and the traveller changed dresses, and went among the sheep The traveller, in the shepherd's dress, called on the sheep, and tried tc lead them; but "they knew not his voice," and never moved. On the other hand, they ran at once at the call of their owner, though thui disguised.

♦ See p. 89. I Ps. exxiii. 2.—Rachel's Sepulchre 175

star they rejoiced with exceeding great joy." This well may perhaps be the fountain of Nephtoah.*

We passed the Convent of Elijah; for the monks suppose that the prophet fled this way to Beersheba,f and under a neighbouring tree, they pretend to show the mark left by his body as he lay asleep on the rocky ground, though it is hard stone. From this point we obtained our first sight of Bethlehem, lying about three miles to the south upon a considerable eminence, and possessing at a distance a peculiarly attractive appearance. We meant to visit it in returning, and therefore at present contented ourselves with a distant view of the place where the memorable words were spoken by the Angel, " Fear not, for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy; unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord."J About a mile and a half further to the south we came to a tomb, built like the whited sepulchres of the East, but believed to be Rachefs Sepulchre. The tomb is no doubt modern, erected probably by the Mahometans; but the spot may justly be regarded as the place where Rachel died and was buried, "And there was but a little way to come to Ephrath (i. e. Bethlehem Ephratah}); and Rachel travailed, and she had hard labour—and Rachel died, and was buried in the way to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem; and Jacob set a pillar upon her grave; that is the pillar of Rachel's grave unto this day."|| The Jews frequently visit it; and many (as Benjamin of Tudela says they used to do in his days) have left their names and places of abode in Hebrew inscribed upon the white plaster in the interior walls. To the west of the tomb, on the face of a hill, stands a large and pleasant-looking village called Bet-Jalah, inhabited, we are told, entirely by Christians. May this not be the ancient Zelzah, " by Rachel's sepulchre in the border of Benjamin,"1T where Saul was told that his father's asses had been found! In other passages of Scripture** the place is called Zelah, from which the modern name mi?ht easily be formed by prefixing the common syllable " Bet" (that is, "house"), and softening the sibilant letter. If so, then this is the spot where they buried the bones of Saul and Jonathan—" in Zelah, in the sepulchre of Kish his father."

• Jo*h. Xt. 9. t 1 Kings xix. 4. 'Luke ii. 10

t Mic. T. 2 H Gen. xxxv. 16, 10, 20. * 1 Sam. x. 1.

*• Jotb. xviii. -29. 2 S«ra. xxi. 14.

176 Solomon'b Fools.

Leaving Bethlehem about half a mile to the east, and proceeding still in a southerly direction, we came down in a short time to the valley, where lie the three large and singular reservoirs, called Solomon's Pools. They are situated at a short distance from one another, each on a different level, so that the water flows from the upper into the middle pool, and from the middle into the lower pool, from which it is conveyed by a stone aqueduct round the hills to Bethlehem, and from Bethlehem to Jerusalem. The walls of the pool are of solid masonry covered over with cement. Close by is a Saracenic fort with high walls and a battlement, perhaps originally intended to protect the pools. Under the shade of its walls we left our mules, and proceeded to measure the pools with a line as accurately as the ground would admit. The result was as follows :—

1. The Upper or Western Pool .

Length of north side, . . . 389 feet
.. of south side, . . 380 -.

Breadth of west side, . . .229 ...
... of east side, . . 236 .-

Depth at one point, . . 25 ».

2. The Middle Pool.

Length, 425 feet .

Breadth of west side, . . . 158 ...
of east side, . . . 250 ...

3. The Lowest or Eastern Pool.

Length 583 feet .

Breadth on the west side, • . 148 ...
... on east side, . . . 202 ...

At all the corners there are flights of steps descending into them. The water is pure and delightful, and each of the pools was about half full. Of the great antiquity of these splendid reservoirs there can be no doubt, and there seems every probability that they are the work of Solomon. This pleasant valley being so near the spot where his father David fed his sheep, would be always interesting to the king; but the only reference to the pools in Scripture, appears to be in Eoclesiastes, where he describes the manner in which, forsaking the fountain of living waters,—"the God that appeared unto him twice,"—he sought every where for cisterns of earthly joy. "I made me gardens and orchards, and I planted trees in them of all kinds of fruits. I made me pools of


water, to water therewith the wood that bringeth fortn trees."* It is highly probable, that, besides other purposes, these cisterns were intended to water rich gardens in their vicinity; and in the lower parts of the valley, at present covered with ripe crops of waving grain, there would be a splendid situation for the gardens, and orchards, and nurseries of fruit-trees, which The Preacher describes. In Josephus and in the Talmud, this place is called Etham.f The former says concerning it, "There was a certain place about fifty furlongs distant from Jerusalem (more than six miles) which is called Etham; very pleasant it is in fine gardens, and abounding in rivulets of water. Thither Solomon used to ride out in the morning."J Beautiful insects, especially very large dragon-flies, with fine variegated wings, were fluttering round the water. We refreshed ourselves at a fountain close by, on the north-west corner of the upper pool, to which we descended by steps. This is said by tradition to be " the spring shut up, the fountain sealed," to which the church is compared in the Song.} It was usual in former times to cover up the well's mouth for the sake of the precious living water. In the fields around the reapers were busy at barley-harvest . It was somewhere near this very spot that Naomi found them reaping as she returned from the captivity of Moab, "they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley-harvest," || and some of these fruitful fields may have been the field of Boaz, where Ruth gleaned after the reapers, in the same manner as the Syrian women were doing when we passed.

After leaving the pools, the road conducted us for some time over very rocky hills. The rude mountain track was generally lined with fragrant shrubs and wild flowers, the pink, the cistus, of a fine lilac colour, the oleander, in great profusion and very tall. Among the trees the Balut or evergreen oak was by far the most frequent, and occasionally our well-known honeysuckle hung its flowers over some bush or shrub, reminding us of home. On many of these hills we could distinctly see that the brushwood had usurped the ancient terraces made for the vine. We came to a considerable valley, cultivated to some extent, at the extremity of which, where the ground begins to rise again, is a village called Sipheer. Can this be a remnant of the name of KirjatK

• Eccl. ii. 5. 6. t See also 2 Chron. xi. 6. t Antiq. viii 7. 3. I Song iv. II II Rulh i. 32.

when Joab's messengers found him and treacherously brought him back to Hebron to be slain.f

We had now spent nearly eight hours on the road, riding very leisurely. About two miles from the town we entered the Valley of Hebron, the way running through vineyards which make the approach very pleasant. Fig-trees and pomegranates in great abundance were every where intermixed with the vines, and the hills above were covered with verdant olive-trees. The vines were in great luxuriance, and the flowers just forming into the grape, so that the delightful fragranco diffused itself far and wide. "The fig-tree putteth forth her green fijrs, and the vines with the tender grapes give a good smell."J In many of the vineyards we saw the towers, built for protection and for other uses, and frequently referred to in Scripture.} We encamped about four o'clock on a verdant plot of ground opposite the northern portion of Hebron, pitching our tents under some fine olive-trees. Beauty lingers around Hebron still. God blesses the spot where he used to meet with Abraham his friend. It lies in a fine fertile valley, enclosed by high hills on the east and west. The houses are disposed in four different quarters, which are separated from each other by a considerable space. The largest portion is to the S. E. around the Mosque, the houses running up the eastern slope. The ruins of ancient houses are still higher up. The fourfold division of the town gives it a singular appearance, while the cupolas on the houses, and the vigorous olive-trees that

* Josh. xv. 16. t 2 Sam. iii. 26.

t Song ii. 13. v Iaa. v. 2. Matt . ul 33.

a can, ana we are in Aoranams steaa. ine AraDic name of the town is El-Halil, "the beloved," so called in memory of Abraham, " the friend of God."

An old Jew, Rabbi Haiim, who is now blind with age, nearing of the arrival of Nr. Nicolayson, sent him an oka of wine in token of respect and kindness. This little incident in the city where Abraham dwelt was peculiarly affecting, and showed in a very clear light the friendly feelings which the Jews of Palestine entertain towards Protestant Missionaries, though fully aware of the object which they have in view. A Greek Christian, named Elias, who was acquainted with our fellow-travellers, showed us great attention.

When the darkness came down, we saw some fine specimens of the glow-worm around our tents. Overhead, the sky was splendid; the stars being unusually large and brilliant from the clearness of the atmosphere. For the same reason, many more stars are visible to the naked eye than in our northern sky. We recollected that it was here, in the plain of Mamre, under the same sky, that God "brought Abraham forth abroad, and said, Look toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: so shall thy seed be."* The same sight recalled with new power the gracious promise, "They that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that turn many to rignteousness as the stars for ever and ever." f

We all met for evening worship in one tent . Mr.

Nicolayson read Genesis xviii, and prayed with a full

heart for Israel, that they to whom the promises were

made might soon enjoy the Redeemer's communion as

• Gen. xv. 5. t Dan. xii. 3. the gift of the previous day.

We proceeded toward the Mosque, the Consul's janissary going before. Several Jews joined in the train. As we passed through the streets, the boys and girls cried Nazarani, teaching us that " the Nazarene" is still a term of reproach in this land. The Mosque is a large quadrangular building, with two minarets at the opposite corners. The lower half of the walls is evidently of the highest antiquity; the stones are very large, and each of them is bevelled in the edge, in the same manner as the ancient stones of the temple wall of Jerusalem. One stone which we measured was 24 feet by 4, and another was still larger. On the two principal sides there are sixteen pilasters, on the other two sides ten, composed of these immense stones, with a simple projecting cope at the top. Above this, the buiding is evidently of Mahometan origin, and is surmounted by a battlement . We were allowed to ascend the wide massy staircase that leads into the interior of the building. The door into the mosque was thrown open, but not a foot was allowed to cross the marble threshold. We were shown the window of the place which contains the tombs of Abraham and Sarah, beneath which is understood to be the cave of Machpelah. There is none of the sacred places over which the Moslems keep so jealous a watch as the tomb of Abraham. It was esteemed a very peculiar favour that we had been admitted thus far, travellers in general being forbidden to approach even the door of the Mosque. A letter from the Governor of Jerusalem

at present are permitted only to look through a hole near the entrance, and to pray with their face toward the grave of Abraham.

After leaving this, we climbed the highest hill to the south-east of Hebron, to obtain, if possible, that view of the plain of Sodom which Abraham had on that morning when it was destroyed from heaven. In the valley, we passed with some difficulty through the vineyards, regaled by the delightful fragrance. At one part we came upon a company of villagers treading out their corn; five oxen were employed on one floor. Some of the villagers also were winnowing what had been trodden out, and others were passing the grain through a sieve to separate it from the dust. We remembered Amos ix. 9. This valley is called Wady Nazarah, " the valley of the Nazarenes," for what reason we could not ascertain. The sides of the hill were very rocky and slippery, but the top was covered with vines. We sat down under the shade of some bushes, and calmly contemplated the fine view on every side. The town, divided into four parts, lay immediately beneath us. The pool, the mosque, the flat roofs, the domes, were all distinctly marked. The vineyards stretch up the hills beautifully, and groves of deep green olives enclose it on every side, Hebron is embosomed in hills. The more ancient houses are on the east side of the valley, and there are traces of ruins running up the hill behind Machpelah. The ancient town is supposed by some to have been built more upon

• Acta vii. 16. t Gen. xlix. 81; L 13.


the hill where the mosque stands, and if so, the tradition of the rabbis is not altogether absurd, that the rays of the rising sun gilding the towers of Hebron used to be seen from the temple at Jerusalem, and gave the sign of the time for killing the morning sacrifice. Hebron was also one of the Refuge cities, and therefore probably conspicuous from afar. Looking to the south, over a high ridge of hills, the eye stretches into a wildernessland of vast extent. In that direction lay Carmel, where Nabal fed his flocks.* But the most interesting view of all was toward the east, not on account of its beauty, but on account of its being in all probability the view which Abraham had when he " looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and lo the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace." f A high ridge intercepts the view of the Dead Sea, but the deep valley formed by it, and the'hills of Moab on the other side, are clearly seen. If Abraham stood on the hill where we were now standing, then he saw not the plain itself, but " the smoke of the country rising up" as from a furnace. If he saw the plain, then he must have stood on that intervening ridge nearer the Dead Sea.

There can be little doubt that it was in this direction that Abraham led the three angelic men on their way toward Sodom, and we felt it a solemn thing to stand where Abraham drew near and pleaded with the Lord, "Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked V What wonders of mercy and judgment these mountains have seen!

Returning to the town, we visited the large Pool of Hebron. It is quite entire, of solid and ancient masonry, and measures 133 feet square. This is no doubt the pool over which David commanded the hands and feet of the murderers of Ishbosheth to be hung up.J There is another pool in the town, but not so large. We then visited the Tomb of Othniel, a sepulchre cut out in the rock, with nine niches. We plucked hyssop from the crevices of the outer wall.} It grows in small stalks, with thickly-set leaves. We visited several other sepulchres near the town; in the town itself is shown what is pretended to be the tomb of Abner, and of Jesse, the father of David, and even that of Esau. In the streets, mothers were carrying their children on the shoulder; || some of

* 1 Sam. xxv. 2. t Gen. xix. 2& t 2 Sam. iv. 12.

$ 1 Kings iv. 3a II Isa. xlix. 22.

than the Spanish. It had no reading-desk at all, but only a stand for the books. However, it surpassed the other in its lamps, all of which were elegant; and one of them of silver,—the gift of Asher Bensamson, a Jew in London, who sent the money for it to Jerusalem, where the lamp was made.

Leaving the synagogue, we stepped into one of the yishvioth or reading-rooms. The books were not well kept, not even clean—the dust was lying thick on some of them, and only two persons were studying in the room. There are three more of these reading-rooms in Hebron.

We next found our way to the house of the old blind Rabbi Haiim, who had sent the present of wine on our arrival. We were very kindly received in the outer court of his house, where we were invited to sit down, and had an interesting interview with this aged Jew. He had come to this land when twenty-four years of age, and had spent fifty years in it. Like Isaac, his eyes had become dim, so that he could not see. About a dozen Jews and as many children gathered round us, while several Jewesses stood at a little distance listening in silence to the conversation. Mr. Nicolayson conversed freely with them, told the errand upon which we had come, and stated the desire and aim of Christians in regard to their salvation. We were glad to be permitted

* Eiek. nxiii. 40. t Isa. iii. 18.

184 HebronAbraham's Oak.

thus to meet with Israel tn their own land. They brought us sherbet and water. We remarked that the dress of the Jewish women is peculiarly graceful, and they have fine pleasant countenances. Many of them wear rich ornaments even when engaged in domestic duties.

In the evening, we rode out of the town to see Abraham's Oak, about a mile to the north-west . It is an immense spreading oak, admitted to be one of the largest trees in Palestine, and very old. Possibly it occupies the site of that tree which Jerome saw pointed out in his days as Abraham's Oak. We found the spread of its branches to be 256 feet in circumference, and 81 feet in diameter. Round the narrowest part of the trunk, we measured 22 feet 9 inches, and at the point where the branches separate, 25 feet 9 inches. It was under such a tree that Abraham pitched his tent, when "he came and dwelt under the oaks of Mamre which is in Hebron."* And it was under such a tree that he spread refreshment for his heavenly guests, f The ride from this tree to the town is through vineyards of the most rich and fertile description, each one having a tower in the midst for the keeper of the vineyard. We were told that bunches of grapes from these vineyards sometimes weigh 6 lb., every grape of which weighs 6 or 7 drams. Sir Moses Montefiore mentioned, that he got here a bunch of grapes about a yard in length. Such a bunch the spies carried on a staff betwixt two. In Hebron, there are 1330 Mahometans who pay taxes, about 200 who do not pay; add to this 700 Jews. At the usual average of Eastern families, this will give less than 10,000 inhabitants.

(June 15.) We broke up our encampment this morning by the dawn, and enjoyed a splendid sunrise. We left the vale of Hebron and its verdant vines with regret, traversing the same road which we had come. In four hours we came down upon the pools of Solomon. Here we turned off to the right, winding round the hills, and following the course of the old aqueduct that carried water into Jerusalem. At this point, a small but beautiful and verdant valley lay beneath us, called by the Arabs "El Tos," "the cup," from its appearance. This may have been one of the spots where David loved to wander with his sheep, and where he meditated such Psalms as the 23d, " He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters."J A gentle brook

* Gen. xiii. 18 See the Hebrew. t Gen. xviii. 8. t Ps. xxii. 3.

so that we longed in vain for a draught of the water which David desired so earnestly. The situation of this well would suit exactly the description given in Chronicles,J a°d the direction of the supposed geographical position of the cave of Adullam, to the south-east of Bethlehem, over the hill of Tekoan. We felt it interesting to realize the scene. The hosts of the Philistines were encamped in the valley of Rephaim; their garrison was at Bethlehem, and David was in the cave of Adullam. In the burning heat of noon-day, he looked toward the hill that lay between him and his native town, and casually exclaimed, "Oh that one would give me drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem, that is at the gate!" His three mightiest captains instantly resolve to express their love to their chief, and their devotion to the cause of God, by putting their lives in jeopardy, in drawing some of the water of this deep well, even under the darts of their enemies. "And the three brake through the host of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David." The white stone of which the hill is composed, and of

* Jer. vi. 1.

t Professor Robinson thinks that these are only openings over the aiueduct which here passes through a deep vault or reservoir, and that there is no well of living water in or near the town; vol. ii. p. 163.

t 1 Chron. xi. 17.

wealthy enlarging their gate after the manner of a palace; for we can hardly imagine that the Arab plunderers entered the houses of Israel in the time of Solomon. The church, generally supposed to have been built by Helena, A. D. 326, is a fine spacious building, and the rows of Corinthian columns are substantial masses of granite. It was delightful to repose a while in the cool atmosphere of this venerable pile; but the monks who seemed to be ignorant and unpolished men, would have us away to see the sacred places of the Nativity. We descended to the grotto, which they call the stable where our Lord was born. Here they showed a marble manger as the place where the heavenly babe was laid; but they had the honesty to allow that "this was not the original manger, though the spot was the same." They showed the stone where Mary sat, and pointed to a silver star as marking the spot where the Saviour was born. The star is intended to represent that which "stood over where the young child was." The grotto is illumined by many handsome lamps, and there are several paintings by the first artists. Yet all is only a miserable profanation ; like the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, it called up in our bosoms no other feelings than disgust and indignation. If this cave was really the place of the nativity, then Popery has successfully contrived to remove out of sight the humiliation of the stable and the manger. "The mystery of iniquity," which pretends to honour, and yet so effectually conceals both the obedience of Christ which he began at Bethlehem, and the sufferings of Christ which he accomplished at Calvary, has with no less success disfigured and concealed the places where * Prov. xvii. 19.

the fields and valleys around Bethlehem. These are still the same as in the night when the angel of the Lord proclaimed, "Fear not, lor behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people." f It filled us with unmingled pleasure to gaze upon the undulating hills and valleys stretched out at our feet, for we were sure that among these David had often wandered with his flock, and in some of them the shepherds had heard the voice that brought the tidings of a Saviour born. Nearly due south lay a prominent hill about six miles distant, which we were told was the hill of Tekoah, giving name also to the wilderness around. The withered sides of this hill were once traversed by the prophet Amos, along with the herdmen that fed their cattle there.j But we saw neither flock nor herd. One interesting association connected with this convent is, that Jerome lived and died here. His eyes daily looked upon this scene, and here he translated the Word of God into Latin. We did not, however, find in the convent any one who seemed to have inherited the industry or learning of Father Jerome.

Remounting our horses, we bade farewell to our monkish friends, and wound slowly down the northern slope of Bethlehem, amongst vineyards and barley fields, where the reapers were engaged as in the days when Ruth and Naomi returned from the land of Moab. We soon arrived at the well of the Magi, where the Holy City comes in view. We could not but linger at the spot. Behind us lay Bethlehem, before us Jerusalem;—on the one hand, the spot where the love of God was first made manifest; on the other, the spot where that love was completed in Immanuel's death;—on the one hand the Luke it 7. t Luke ii. 10. t Amos i.

thing is visible but the bare wall with its battlement, surrounding you see not what. Coming near we were startled by the depth of Hinnom, with its rocks and caves, and by the bold front of Zion.

We had scarcely seated ourselves at Mr. Nicolayson's hospitable board, when letters from home were put into our hands, the first that we had received since our departure. It was truly refreshing to hear that all our friends were well, and our flocks not left uncared for. One of our letters brought the news that the Auchterarder case had been decided against our Church in the House of Lords. We all felt it a solemn thing to receive such tidings in Jerusalem. They seemed to intimate a time of coming trial to the Church of Scotland. The time seemed to be come when judgment must begin at the house of God in Scotland; and we called to mind the clear intimations of prophecy, that " there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation," at the very time when Israel shall be delivered. We closed our Saturday evening together, by reading the 2d chapter of Luke.

(June 10. Sabbath.) We had agreed beforehand to meet together this day, and join in the communion of the Lord's Supper. It was therefore with feelings of sacred interest that we saw the dawn of a Sacrament-Sabbath in Jerusalem. The solemn scenes which we had witnessed during the week—Calvary, Gethsemane, Bethany, * Canto 3, 3. t lea. i. &

zarein, wno naa oeen orougni to Know me iruin unaer the American missionaries. " It was a time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. After the usual morning prayers of the Church of England, Mr. Nicolayson preached on 1 John i. 3, " Truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ," with fervent simplicity. Dr. Keith joined with him in administering the broken bread and poured out wine. In the evening, Mr. Bonar preached from John xiv. 2,3, "In my Fathers house are many mansions," &c, on the believer's desire to be with Christ, and Christ's desire to be with his people. Feelings of deepest solemnity filled our hearts, while we worshipped in an upper room, after such a feast, where we had been showing the Lord's death " till he come" * and " his feet stand upon the Mount of Olives." f And it was with more than ordinary fervour that we joined in the prayer that Israel might soon have their solemn feasts restored to them, and the ways of Zion no longer mourn, and that even now the Holy Spirit, who, in this city, came down on the apostles, would again descend on us, and on all the churches. After singing together the last part of the 116th Psalm, we separated. On our way to our home on Mount Zion, we gazed upon the Mount of Olives, on which the last rays of the evening sun were pouring their golden lustre, and remembered how, after the first Lord's Supper, Jesus went out thereto his ago

• 1 Cor. xi. 2*. t Zech. xiv. 1.

perfectly solid. This is believed to be the tower of Hippicus, said by Josephus to be one mass (Map* famm), and which was spared by Titus when the temple and city were destroyed. May it not be still more ancient, the site at least of " the stronghold of Zion" which David took from the Jebusites? * Or " the tower of David," to which the neck of the Church is compared, " Thy neck is like the tower of David builded for an armory ?" f Descending into the vale of Hinnom, we tried to sketch the steep view of Mount Zion; then returning, gathered several specimens of the Spina Chritti. This plant, called Naitka by the Arabs, grows abundantly on the hills of Jerusalem; the branches are very pliable, so as easily to be platted into a crown, while the thorns are very many, and sharp, and about an inch in length. The tradition seems highly probable, that this was the plant of which the Roman soldiers platted a crown of thorns for the brow of Christ. \

Towards evening, we visited that part of the Old Temple wall to which the Jews are allowed to go, that they may pray and weep over the glory that is departed. It is a part of the western enclosure of the Haram, and the access to it is by narrow and lonely streets. The Jew who was our guide, on approaching the massy stones, took off his shoes and kissed the wall.

Every Friday evening, when the Jewish Sabbath begins, some Jews may be found here deeply engaged in prayer;

* 2 Sam. v. 7. t Song iv. 4. 1 Mitt, xxvii. 29.

ing, Mr. M'Cheyne went to visit the same spot, guided by Mr. George Dalton. On the way, they passed the houses where the lepers live all together, to the east of the Zion Gate within the walls. A little further on, the heaps of rubbish on Mount Zion, surmounted by prickly pear, were so great, that at one point they stood higher than the city wall. The view of Mount Olivet from this point is very beautiful. The dome of the mosque El Aksa appeared to be torn and decayed in some places, and even that of the Mosque of Omar seemed far from being splendid. Going along by the ancient valley of the Tyropceon, and passing the gate called by the monks the Oung Gate, now shut up, Mr. Dalton pointed out in the wall of the Haram, near the south-west corner, the singular traces of an ancient arch, which Professor Robinson had discovered to be the remains of the bridge from the Temple to Mount Zion, mentioned frequently by Josephus, and remarkable as a work of the highest antiquity. The stones in the temple wall that form the spring of this ancient bridge are of enormous size. This interesting discovery goes to prove that the large bevelled stones, which form the foundation of the present enclosure of the Haram in so many parts, are really the work of Jewish hands, and the remains of the outer wall of the Temple of Solomon. Neither is this conclusion in

t Kings u. 3 . I Lam. i. 12

and he seemed deeply engaged. Mr. Dalton acting as interpreter, he asked what it was he was reading. He showed the book, and it happened to be the 22d Psalm. Struck by this providence, Mr. M'Cheyne read aloud till he came to the 16th verse, "They pierced my hands and my feet;" and then asked, "Of whom speaketh the prophet this?" The Jew answered, "Of David and all his afflictions." "But David's hands and feet were not pierced!" The Jew shook his head. The true Interpretation was then pointed out to him, that David was a prophet and wrote these things of Immanuel, who died for the remission of the sins of many. He made the sign with the lip which Easterns make to show that they despise what you are saying. "Well, then, do you know the way of forgiveness of which David speaks in the 32d Psalm?" The Jew shook his head again. For here is the grand error of the Jewish mind, "The way of peace they have not known."

The same evening we visited all the synagogues of Jerusalem at the time of evening prayer. They "are sir in number, all of them small and poorly furnished, and four of them under one roof. The lamps are the only handsome ornaments they contain. The reading-desk is little else than an elevated part of the floor, enclosed with a wooden railing. The ark has none of the rich embroidery that distinguishes it in European synagogues. As it was an ordinary week-day, we found in every synagogue the Jewish children who had been receiving instruction in reading; and in one of the largest, a group by themselves was pointed out to us as being orphan children who are taught free. After examining the synagogues, wc paid a visit to a Rabbi, whose house, like that dress, their pale faces, and timid expression, all seem to betoken great wretchedness. They are evidently much poorer than the Jews of Hebron; and "the crown is fallen from their heads; wo unto them that they have sinned." J

At night we had another opportunity of obtaining information as to the experience of Missionaries in labouring among the Jews of Palestine. The principal subject of conversation was—the literary qualifications of missionaries for Palestine. The Hebrew is the most necessary language for one who labours among the Jews in this country, and it is spoken chiefly in the Spanish way. A Missionary should study the character and elements of Arabic in his own country, and the more thoroughly he is master of these the better, but the true pronunciation can be acquired only on the spot. Yet Arabic is not so absolutely necessary as Hebrew. Spanish, too, is useful, and also German, and he must know Italian, for the purpose of holding intercourse with Europeans in general. Judeo-Spanish is the language of the Sephardim, and Judeo-Polish of the Ashkenazim (t. e. Jews from Europe). All of them know a little of Italian. All Jews in Palestine speak Hebrew, but then they often attach a meaning to the words that is not the true meaning or grammatical sense, so that it is absolutely necessary to know the vernacular tongue, in order to be sure that you and they understand the same thing by the words employed. A Missionary ought to be well grounded in prophecy, and he should be one who fully and thoroughly adopts the principles of literal interpretation, both in order to give him nope and perseverance, and in order to fit him for reasoning with Jews. It is not so much

* Acta xviii. 7. t DeuL xxii. 8. \ Lam. v. 16.


preaching talents as controversial that are required; yet it is to be hoped that both may soon be needed. He ought to have an acquaintance with Hebrew literature to the extent of understanding the Talmud, so as to be able to set aside its opinions. Acquaintance, too, with the Cabbala is necessary, in order to know the sources of Jewish ideas, and how scriptural arguments are likely to affect their minds. Zohar is one of the best Cabbalistic commentaries. A knowledge of Chaldee and Syriac would also be very useful. In a mission to the Jews there ought to be both Jewish and Gentile labourers; the Gentile to form the nucleus, the other to be the effective labourers. If a converted Jew go through a course of education, and be ordained, he would combine the advantages of both; still a Gentile fellow-labourer would always be desirable. Faith and perseverance are the grand requisites in a missionary to Israel. He should never abandon a station unless in the case of absolute necessity. He may make occasional tours in the country round about, but he must have a centre of influence. It is of the highest importance to retain his converts beside him, and form them into a church; for two reasons:—1. Little is done if a man is only convinced or even converted, unless he is also trained up in the ways of the Gospel. 2. The influence of sincere converts belonging to a mission is very great . It commends the cause of Christ to others. At the same time it ought, if possible, to be made a rule to give no support to converts, except in return for labour, either literary or agricultural.

(June 18.) Early next morning some of our company set out to make a farewell visit to Bethany, and the more notable scenes on the east of the city. We passed through the bazaar and narrow ruined streets, and purchased some articles as memorials of Jerusalem. Issuing forth by St. Stephen's Gate, we crossed the Kedron, and once more visited Gethsemane, a spot which called forth fresh interest every time we saw it, and has left a fragrant remembrance on our mind that can never fade away. Passing the northern wall, we went up the face of the Mount of Olives, stopping every now and then and looking round upon "the perfection of beauty." Jeremiah says that "aU her beauty is departed."* How passing beautiful, then, it must have been in ancient days'.

* Lam. i. 6.


IUILII LUI Oil CAOIIljJ1C, SUllUlIll^ uic vcugcauLC ui dcnial

fire,"f and looked down upon the place where Jesus "came near and beheld the city, and wept over it," we felt that the recent sight of Sodom's doom may have kindled into a flame the Redeemer's unutterable compassion, when he seemed to manifest in his person the tender words of the prophet, " How shall I give thee up, Ephraim? how shall I deliver thee, Israel? how shall I make thee as Admah? how shall I set thee as Zeboim 1 Mine heart is turned within me, my repentings are kindled together.''J

From the same height we took our last view of the course of the Jordan, marked only by the strip of verdure on its banks. Beyond lay the valley of Shittitn, in the plains of Moab, a wilderness of pasture-land, said to be fifteen miles long by ten miles broad, affording ample room for the goodly tents of the many thousands of Israel. } Not far from that spot Elijah ascended to heaven in his fiery chariot, and his mantle floated down upon his holy successor. And from the same open sky, at another time, the Spirit descended like a dove, and abode upon the Saviour when he was baptized by John in Jordan.

Another prominent object in the scene is the remains of an ancient village on the height nearly south from Bethany, and about half a mile distant; it is called AbuDis. May not this be the remains of Bethpkage, the village " over against" the Jericho road, where the disciples obtained the colt and brought it to Jesus? No other trace of Bethphage has ever been found, neither has any traveller found an ancient name for Abu-Dis that has any probability of being the true one. The only

V.-/i k xvi. Hi. The left hand is the north, and the right hand the *m«a in Kftatern phraseology.

Jude 7. t Hos. xi. 8- 4 Num. xxii. 1; xxv. 1


objection is, "that Abu-Dis is not upon the Jericho road but half a mile to the south of it. But the words of tne Evangelist, rightly understood, do not imply that Bethphage was on the Jericho road, or that Jesus entered the village. Jesus was travelling from Jericho probably by the present highway, "And when ihey came nigh to Jerusalem, unto Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives, he sendeth forth two of his disciples, and saith unto them, Go your way into the village over against you."* The simple meaning appears to be, that when they came to the confines of these two villages, lying on the back of the Mount of Olives, (and Bethphage maybe named first, because the more conspicuous of the two,) Jesus sent two of the disciples to the village on the opposing height. Had he passed through the village, there would have been no need to send messengers to fetch the colt .

Leaving the summit, we descended, over a lower brow of the hill, upon "the town of Mary and her sister Martha," concealed by terraces, and rocks, and fig-trees. We lingered here for a considerable time, occasionally attended by some of the simple country people, and reading over to ourselves the 11th chapter of John. It is a fragrant spot; the name of Christ was poured forth here in his wonderful deeds of love and tenderness, like Mary's pound of ointment of spikenard very costly, and the fragrance is as fresh to a true disciple's heart as on the day when it was done.

We left Bethany with regret, and proceeded to Jerusalem by the broad and rocky pathway, which appears to be the ancient road. It was along this way Jesus rode upon the ass's colt; here they spread their garments in the way, and cut down branches of the trees and strewed them in the way, and cried Hosanna! You first obtain a distant view of part of Jerusalem before leaving the ridge on which Bethany stands; again you lose it, descending into a ravine; then ascending, you wind round the Mount of Olives, with the Mount of Offence beneath you, when suddenly the whole city comes into view. We read over the 11th chapter of Mark as we traversed this interesting road. It was by this road Jesus was walking when he said to the fig-tree, "No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever;" and the next morning they saw it dried up from the roots, and Jesus

* Mark xi. 1, 2.

ascended to the wall of the city, and entering by the Zion Gate, once more passed through the Jewish quarters, and looked upon the miseries of Israel in the city where David dwelt. "How hath the Lord covered the daughter of Zion with a cloud in his anger!" f They are by far the most miserable and squalid of all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and if we could have looked upon their precious souls, their temporal misery would have appeared but a faint emblem of the .spiritual death that reigns within. "Ah sinful nation! a people laden with iniquity! The whole head is sick, and the whole heart is faint." J May we never lose the feelings of intense compassion toward Israel, which these few days spent in Jerusalem awakened; and never rest till all the faithful of the church of our fathers have the same flame kindled in their hearts!

• Mark xi. 14.20,23. t Lam. ii. 1. J Isa. i. 1, 5.


and reluctantly. We felt deep regret at leaving both the city with its holy associations, and the kind friends who had given us such Christian entertainment in this strange land. The communion of saints had been inexpressibly precious, though enjoyed here only for a few days. Mr. Nicolayson, whose truly Christian and brotherly kindness we can never forget nor repay, rode some miles with us, and then bade us farewell.

A Latin Christian, Giuseppe, asked leave to travel in our company. He lived at Bethlehem, and had visited us several times in Jerusalem, selling the beads, inkhorns, and mother-of-pearl ornaments, which are made at Bethlehem. On his arm he had the Virgin Mary and the Holy Sepulchre punctured with the Al-henna dye, a custom which appears to have been in use in ancient times.*

We journeyed north-west, and soon passed the Tombs of the Judges, but had only time to glance at them. They are cut out of the rock in the same manner as the Tombs of the Kings. Though it is commonly said that they are the sepulchres of members of the Sanhedrim, yet their real history has not been ascertained. Descending by a very rocky path, we came to the bottom of the deep valley, called by travellers the Valley of Elah. Luxuriant vineyards were on either hand, and the sun's rays poured down with great power into the deep ravines. We soon began to ascend the high ridge on which Naby

* Isa xlix. 16; xliv. 5.

appears to be no good reason tor doubting the acv, of this ancient tradition. The ruins stand on the most elevated point of the whole region, commanding a magnificent view on every side; thus answering well to the name Ramah, which means " a height" and to its other name Ramathaim-Zophim, " The heights of the watchmen" The conjecture that it is the ancient Mizpeh, the gathering-place of Israel, is without any solid foundation^

* Sam- i. 1; viii. 4; xxv. 1.

t The only objection to this being the Ramah of Samuel, is taken from the history of Saul's visit to Samuel, recorded 1 Sam. ix. x. In his house at Ramah, Samuel had entertained the future king of Israel. When Saul rose to return to Gibeah, Samuel describes the way as leading " by Rachel's sepulchre, in the border of Benjamin, at Zelzah" (1 Sum. x. 2). But as both Rachel's sepulchre and Zelzah are many hours to the south of Naby-Samuel, every step taken in that direction would lead him away from Gibeah, which lies to the north-east . At first reading this passage is very perplexing; the difficulty, however, may be cleared up in the following manner. Saul's rather lived not at Gibeah, but at Zelzah or Zelah (Bet-Jala), for we read that his family sepulchre was there (2 Sam. xxi. 11). But he had an uncle who dwelt at Gibeah (1 Sam. x. 14); and Saul himself usually resided there, both before and after his being appointed to the kingdom (1 Sam. x- 26), and hence it was called " Gibeah of SauL" On the occasion of his father losing his asses, he sent for his son Saul to help him in seeking for them. Saul, however, sought in vain, and was now on his way to Zelzah to let his rather know that he had not found the asses, when, as he was passing near the hill of Ramah, his servant suggested a visit to Samuel. It was then that the interview mentioned 1 Sam. x. occurred. On leaving Samuel, he proceeded towards his father's house at Zelzah as he had proposed, passing by Rachel's sepulchre. Here he met two men just come from home, who told him that the asses were found; next he met three men on the plain of Tabor (a spot now unknown); and then, having seen his father, came back to his own house at Gibeah; which is called the " hill of God," because there was a school of the prophet* there.


We ascended to the roof of the deserted mosque, and surveyed the country round and round with unmingled pleasure. We could count twelve towns or villages within sight. To the south, Jerusalem, sheltered by the Mount of Olives, was distinctly visible; and still farther south, about twelve miles distant, Bethlehem and the Frank Mountain. We were now in a situation to understand the prophecy of Jeremiah in reference to the massacre of the infants of Bethlehem, "In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not." * The tomb of Rachel suggested the figurative representation of the mother of Benjamin and Joseph rising up to lament her slaughtered little ones, and the import of the passage is as if he had said, That the tide of wo rolled from Bethlehem to the hill whereon Rama stands. Rachel from her sepulchre begins the note of wo, and it spreads all around even to the distant hills that shut in the plain. Quite near us in the same direction stood a village in the mountains called Lifta, and still nearer Betiksa, which may possibly be the ancient Sechu, where there was a great well. { To the south-east was another village, Kephorieh, which we fancied might possibly be the site of Chephira,\ since the other cities of the Gibeonites, Beerotn, Gibeon, and Kirjath-jearim, are all in this region. Emmaus must have been like one of these secluded villages, and probably in this direction. We could easily imagine the two disciples traversing the rocky pathway between the vineyards, by which we had that evening passed, and Jesus himself drawing near and going with them, talking with them by the way, and opening to them the Scriptures, while they perceived not the difficulties of the road nor the lapse of time, for " their hearts burned within them by the way." \ Looking to the east, a fine hilly scene lay before us, bounded by"the mountains of Moab. Upon a height near at hand stood Bet-hanina; to the north-east, on another hill, Ram; and still farther north, Kelundieh. In the same direction, though not within our view, lay Gibeah of Saul, and Michmash, not far from each other, both of which remain unto this day. Due north we saw Rem-Allah in a very notable position; a little to the west, Beth-hoor, believed

by nature, that they present the appearance of a flight of steps all round from the top to the bottom. The buildings are mostly on the western brow of the hill, the rest of the summit being covered with fine olivetrees. Many of the terraces also are set with vines and fruit-trees. From the foot of the ridge on which Ramah stands, a fine plain or shallow valley stretches past Gibeon to the north for two or three miles. From Gibeon it stretches westward for about a mile, bounded by a low hilly range, except in two points, where there are openings towards the western plain, the one of which is the descent of Beth-horon. The fields of this valley were distinctly marked out, some of them bearing grain, but most lying waste. In one place, the vineyard stretched quite across, with a verdure most refreshing to the eye. This valley the muleteers called Ajaloun. Again and again we put the question to them, to make sure that we were not mistaken, and they still answered Ajaloun. Since our return, we have not been able to find that any previous writer has found this name still remaining, and applied to this valley, and we therefore fear that the muleteers may have picked it up from the inquiries or conversation of some traveller. How

* loth. ix. t Josh. x. a.


ever this may be, the scene of Joshua's miracle was ut that time vividly set before us. The glorious sun Wzls sloping westward, about to sink in the Mediterranean Sea, and his horizontal rays were falling full upon the hill of Gibeon; at the same moment the moon was rising, and soon alter poured her silver beams into this quiet vale. Such probably was the very position of the sun and moon, in that memorable day when Joshua prayed and " said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand thou st.ill upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon." * We are plainly told that the battle between Joshua and the five kings of the Amorites was " at Gibeon." It lasted probably the greater part of the day, till toward evening the bands of the Amorites began to give way, and Israel chased them as far as the descent to Beth-horon. At that steep defile the Lord cast down great hailstones from heaven upon them, so that they died. But it seems to have been before that, and before they were out of sight of Gibeon, that Joshua uttered the singular prayer above narrated; and in confirmation of this view, it is interesting to notice that Isaiah calls the scene of that day's wonders, " The Valley of Gibeon."f There was a peculiarly mellow softness in the evening light, that gilded both tower and valley at the moment, and it was strangely interesting to look upon the scene where «* the Lord hearkened unto the voice of a man."

It was at Gibeon also, that Abner and Joab met on either side of the pool, and that the young men began the contest which ended so fatally.J We were afterwards told that the pool remains there to this day on the north side of the hill.} Here, too, "at the great stone which is in Gibeon," Joab murdered Amasa, and " shed the blood of war in peace, and put the blood of war upon his girdle that was about his loins, and in his shoes that were on his feet."|| In the same place, Johanan, the son of Kareah, found Ishmael" by the great waters that are in Gibeon." It was here also, that "God appeared to Solomon in a dream by night, and said, Ask what I shall give thee." IT It is thus hallowed as a place of prayer, and yet more, as a place where God showed to the world before the Redeemer came, how unlimited was his boun

» Josh. x. 12. t Isa. xxviii. 21. t 2 Sam. ii. 12.

$ Professor Robinson told us that he had seen this pool, but had forgot to look for the great stone. II 2 Sam. xx. 8; 1 Kings ii. 5. IT 1 Kings ill. 5.

finely situated on rocky terraced heights; the name ot one of which was Raphat. It was here that Dr. Keith missed his favourite staff, which had a mariner's compass on the top of it. A muleteer rode back in search of it, but in vain. The darkness was coming down, so that we had to hurry on. Our view was beginning to be obscured, but we could perceive that Benjamin (whose borders we were traversing) had a pleasant portion.

In two hours from Ramah, we reached Beer, the ancient Beerolh. Our servants had gone before us and erected the tent, and now stood at the tent-door to welcome us, Giuseppe helping us to alight with great kindness. It was a fine moonlight evening; the ground was sparkling with the light of the glow-worm, in a manner similar to what we had seen at Hebron, and the fire-flies glittered through the air in great numbers. Our tent was pitched immediately in front of a gushing fountain that emptied its waters into a large trough, above which was a Mahometan place of prayer falling into decay. We lay down to rest, with the remembrance that it was here that Jotham took up his abode when he fled from Shechem for fear of his brother Abimelech.J There is a pleasing though fanciful tradition associated with the place, that it was here Joseph and Mary, on their way back to Nazareth, first discovered that the child Jesus} was not in their

• Sone ii 15. Herod, too, ia called by this name Luke xiii. 32, a destroyer of the Lord's vineyard. It was in reference to tliis that Erasmus was at one time branded "by the monks as a (ox that laid waste the vineyard of the Lord.

f Judg. xv. & t Judg. ix. 21. $ Luke ii. 44.

company, and turned back again to Jerusalem seeking him. It was probably near this, too, that Deborah the prophetess dwelt "under the palm-tree of Deborah, between Ramah and Bethel in Mount Ephraim." *

(June 19.) We were up before the sun, and enjoyed the luxury of washing ourselves at the full flowing fountain of Beer. It is from this fountain that the town receives its name, both now and in ancient times. The Moslem women came out to draw water, and the well soon presented a lively scene. The remains of the town lie on the rising ground to the north-east of the fountain. We wondered how travellers could ever suppose this to be the site of Michmash: for it does not stand near any deep defile, nor are there any such sharp rocks as Bozez and Seneh in the neighbourhood ;f besides, it is not on the east of Beth-aven or Bethel, but to the south-west of it. J Beeroth was one of the cities that belonged to the Gibeonites, and afterwards fell to the lot of Benjamin.} It was to this place, also, that the murderers of Ishbosheth originally belonged. ||

We journeyed to the north-east, through a pleasant pasture country. On our left, we passed a cave in the hillside, running a considerable way into the rock, which suggested to us the nature of the retreat of the five kings of the Amorites, who fled from the battle of Gibeon, and "hid themselves in a cave at Makkedah."1f

In a little time we approached the district of Beth-aven or Bethel. The hills around, as well as the ruins of the town, are called by the Arabs, Beteen. This name is, in all probability, the remains, not of Bethel, but of Bethaven. It would seem, that in the days of Joshua, this region was called "the wilderness of Beth-aven," ** and perhaps the hill on which the town afterwards stood, Beth-aven.ff When the town was built it was called Luz, but Jacob, grateful fbr the visit of mercy which he there received, called it Bethel, "the house of God." In later days, it became the seat of idolatrous worship, and the indignant prophet of Israel, to awaken the people to a sense of their sin, recalled the ancient name t\ "Beth-aven," or "house of vanity," and sometimes only

* Judg. iv. 5. t 1 Sam. xiv. 4.

t 1 Sam. xiii. 5. Professor Robinson and Mr. Nicolayson visited Michmash, lying to the south-east of Bethel. A deep valley below it and two pointed rocks still fix its position, and the Arabic name is Mukkmas.

§ Josh. ix. 17; xviii 25. H 2 Sam. iv. 2. f Josh. x. 16.

•* Josh, xviii. 12. tt Josh. vii. 2. tl Hos. x. 5, 8.

"Aven." From this seems to have been formed the present name Beteen.

Turning off the path, a little to the right, we rode into the middle of the ruins, on the summit of a considerable rising ground. A ruined tomb on the nearest eminence guides to them. There are not many remains of edifices that can be traced, but here and there heaps of ancient stones, the foundations of a wall, and a broken cistern, indicate former dwellings. The whole summit of the hill is covered over with stones that once composed the buildings, and there is space enough for a large town. We looked with deep interest across the ravine on the right to the gentle hill considerably higher, on the east of Bethel. Probably this was the very spot where Abraham pitched his tent, when first he came a lonely stranger to the land of Canaan; for, it is said, he removed to "a mountain on the east of Bethel, having Bethel on the west, and Ai on the east, and there he built an altar unto the Lord," which he afterwards returned to visit ;* showing with what holy boldness he trusted himself to the Lord's keeping, though bitter foes on either side enclosed him. Nor could we forget, that on the hill where we stood Jacob spent that solemn night, when he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and beheld a ladder "set upon the earth, and the top of it reaching to heaven." We read over the passage and applied the prayer to ourselves, f It was here, too, that Jeroboam set up one of the golden calves. And here he stood beside the altar, burning idolatrous incense. Perhaps there was a double scheme of wicked policy in his choice of this place, for we observed that it must have been within sight of the highway to Jerusalem, that the people might be intercepted on their way up to the house of the Lord; so that his object was at once to allure them from God, and obliterate Bethel's hallowed associations with Jehovah's gracious discoveries of himself to their fathers Jacob and Abraham. The success of this plan may be conjectured from the children that here mocked Elisha, and taunted him with Elijah's ascension, saying, "Go up, thou bald-head." The prophet who came out of Judah, and warned Jeroboam, probably travelled the road over which we had passed. Deborah, Rebecca's nurse, died here, and was buried probably in the ravine on the south, for it is said to have been " beneath Bethel," under an oak tree; and


Jacob showed his tender remembrance of her, by calling it " Allon bachuth," " the oak of weeping."

Few places are so full of interest. The shapeless ruins scattered over the brow of the hill, are themselves silent witnesses of God's truth and faithfulness. He had said, "Seek not Bethel, nor enter into Gilgal; for Gilgal shall surely go into captivity, and Bethel shall come to nought.''' * This word has been fulfilled to the very letter. We did not at the time remember the prophecy of Hosea, "The high places of Aven, the sin of Israel, shall be destroyed; the thorn and the thistle shall come up on their altars;"} but we have no doubt, from the desolate nature of the ground, and the abundance of thorny plants in that region, that some other travellers will discover that t.horns and thistles are waving over the altars of Bethel, in fulfilment of the word of Him who cannot lie. We ourselves saw sufficient marks of the curse, of which the thorn and the thistle are the emblems.J

Leaving the ruins, we returned to the road, and proceeding northward, came in less than an hour to a village on our left, Ain Yebrud, finely situated upon the summit of a very rocky hill, whose sides were terraced and planted with vines. A little after, we saw upon the left another smaller village of the same name, situated upon a similar hill, whose sides were entirely uncultivated, presenting little more than a barren rock. The contrast was very striking, and showed us at once the change produced by the slightest cultivation in this land, and how, by the blessing of God, in "a very little while Lebanon may be turned into a fruitful field." Another village further on, and also upon a hill, was called Geeb, conjectured by some to be the ancient Gob, famous in the wars with the Philistines,} though others suppose it to be Gibeah in Mount Ephraim, the burying-place of Eleazar the son of Aaron.|| These villages on the tops of the hills had not only the advantage ofbeing easily defended, but must also have been highly salubrious, having the cool breezes playing around them. We now entered a narrow defile called Mezra, and descended rapidly among the finest vines and fig-trees which we

* Amos v. 5. Lord Lindsay's interpretation of this passage cannot stand. It is not a direction to a traveller not to search out its ruins, but a command to the idolatrous Israelites to give up their idolatry,;, d 'Seek not Bethel, but return to me."

t Hos. x. 8 . t See p. 119

$ 2 Sam- xri. 19. II Josh. xxiv. 33 in the original

reflection of the sun's rays that now beat upon us from these rocks, may have been felt by him on that very day, when, " wearied with his journey," about noon he sat down on Jacob's Well. In about an hour we ascended into a pleasant fertile little plain spreading to the east, having Singeel, a village on the hills, on our left hand, and Turmus Aya, upon an eminence in the middle of the plain, on our right . It was at this point that we should have turned to the right, to visit Seiloun, the remains of ancient Shiloh. Our guide promised at setting out to carry us that way, but unwilling to lengthen theYatigues of the journey, he allowed us to proceed north without letting us know till it was too late to return. We afterwards found that it lay about an hour distant to the right. Mr. Calhoun, an American Missionary, told us that he had visited it, and found it situated upon an eminence, having fine valleys on every side of it, except towards the south,—valleys that could have contained multitudes at the great feasts. Higher hills rise behind these valleys. Our servant Ibraim had visited it with Professor Robinson, and told us that they had found nothing but ruins. The words of the prophet are still full of meaning; "Go ye now into my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel."f We

• 2 Sam. x*iii. 30. Josh. xxiv. 30 t Jer. vii. 12


could also see the minute accuracy of the description of its situation given in Scripture, "Shiloh, a place which is on the north side of Bethel, on the east side of the highway that goeth up from Bethel to Shechem, and on the south of Lebonah." * The region round is all fitted for such vineyards as are described in the same chapter, t

We now ascended to the highest ridge of a rocky mountain, having a very deep valley on our left. Below us on our right lay a picturesque plain of small extent embosomed in hills. Into this we descended by a dangerous pathway, and came first to an old ruin called Khanel-Luban, and then to a fine flowing well, Beer-el-Luban. The water was cool and pleasant . Some Syrian shepherds had gathered their flocks around the well. There were many hundreds of goats; some drinking out of the troughs, some reclining till the noonday heat should be past. We were again reminded of the Song, " Where thou makest the flock to rest at noon ;"J and of the care which the Lord Jesus takes to refresh the weary souls of his people during the burden and heat of the day, delivering them from daily returning wants and temptations. At the north-west end of this valley, on the height, we could see the village of Luban, the ancient Lebonah.\

Having travelled more than five hours without intermission, we were glad to rest and refresh ourselves for a little under some pleasant olive-trees. Scarcely had we resumed our journey, when we met at the northern entrance of the plain, the Bedouin Sheikh whom we had seen at Jerusalem, and who was to conduct Lord Claud Hamilton to Amnion and Jerash. He had faithfully fulfilled his engagement, and was now returning, having left his charge at Nablous. Three fine young Bedouins rode behind him, and all were attired and armed in the manner of their country. He at once recognised us with joy, and showed us with no little vanity the presents he had got from Lord Hamilton. Bidding them salam, we wound out of the valley to the right under a small town, like a nest in the rocks, which an old Arab called Sawee. Leaving this vale we descended into another running from east to west, very deep and rocky. Some countrymen called it Wady Deeb. Crossing the dry channel, and ascending to the very summit of "the opposite ridge. a noble prospect burst upon our view. From the foot of the mountain on which we stood, a beautiful plain

* Judg. xxi. 19. t Judg. xxi. 21. t Song i."7. i Judg. ui 1*

In one of the villages the treading and winnowing were going on in a lively manner. On the eastern range of hills there are three villages perched in very romantic situations, the name of the northmost was Raujeeb. Probably these were flourishing towns in the days when Joseph's portion was blessed with "the chief things of the ancient mountains, and the precious things of the lasting hills." * While we gazed upon these villages of the Samaritans, one of the most touching narratives of the gospel was vividly recalled to us. Once when our Lord was going up to Jerusalem, he sent messengers before his face, and "they went and entered into a village of the Samaritans to make ready for him, and they did not receive him." His disciples wished to command fire to come down from heaven; but he gently rebuked them, saying, " Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of;" and they went to another village, f It is probable that this was the road by which the Saviour was travelling, and some of these may have been the villages here spoken of. In about two hours we left this fertile plain, and came round the eastern shoulder of Mount Gerizim, ascending up a path worn deep in the rock, till we found ourselves in the entrance of the Vale of Sychar, running east and west between Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal. We did not know at the time, but an after visit made up for the omission, that it was at this very turn of the road, where it bends toward the city, that Jesus rested; for Jacob's Well was there. Entering a little way within the vale, we rested for a while beside a flow• Dent . xxxiii. 15. t Luke ix. 52—56.


ing fountain, called Beer-el-Defna, at which the shepherds were watering their flocks. The water flows into a large reservoir, from which it is conducted to irrigate a delightful garden of herbs. The ride up this valley was indeed beautiful. The plain stretches about two miles long to the town of Nablous, the ancient Sychar, and the average breadth appeared to be nearly half a mile. The sun was beginning to sink in the west, and was pouring his beams directly through the valley as we approached. A fine grove of old olive-trees extends for about a mile to the east of the town. Through this we passed, and then under the northern wall till we came to a grassy spot on the banks of a winding stream, where we pitched our tent on the west side of Sychar. We had often read of the verdure and beauty of this scene, but it far exceeded our expectations. The town with its cupolas and minarets is peculiarly white and clean, and is literally embosomed in trees. In the gardens beside us, we saw the almond-tree, the pomegranate, the fig, the vine, the carob-tree, and the mulberry; orange-trees also, with golden fruit, and a few graceful palms. The singular prickly pear is the common hedge of these gardens. Sitting at our tent-door, we surveyed calmly the interesting scene. Mount Ebal was before us, rising about 800 feet from the level of the plain. It appeared steep, rocky, and barren. A few olives were sprinkled over its base, but higher up we could observe no produce save the prickly pear, which seemed to cover the face of the hill, much in the same way as the prickly furze on many of the hills of our own country. Viewing it from another point further to the west the next day, it appeared entirely without verdure, frowning naked and precipitous over the vale. Mount Gerizim was behind us, rising to a similar elevation. Although precipitous in many parts, it has not the same sterile and gloomy appearance which Mount Ebal has. It has a northern exposure, and therefore the midday sun does not wither up its verdure with its scorching rays. On the sides of one of its shady ravines we saw fields of corn, olives, and gardens, giving it altogether a cheerful appearance. In some places the precipices of Gerizim seem to overhang the town, so that Jotham's voice floating over the valley, as he repeated the Parable of the Trees from one of the summits of Gerizim, might easily be heard by a quiet audience eagerly listening in the plain below.*

• Judg. ix. 7—20.

aa&^uiuiy ancu unu Uccpcoi am in v. x in:> luvciy Vdllcy

formed a noble sanctuary, with these rocky mountains for its walls, and only heaven for its canopy. And where can we meet with a scene of more true sublimity than was witnessed there, when a covenanted nation bowed their heads before the Lord and uttered their loud Amen, alike to his promise and his threatening?

In our evening worship, we read John iv., with feelings of new and lively interest. We had scarcely committed ourselves to repose, when the jackals and wolves, which in great numbers find covert in the neighbouring hills, began their loud and long-continued howling; the dogs that prowl about the gates of the town immediately sent back a loud cry of defiance, and for several hours there seemed to be a regular onset between the parties. The ropes of our tents were occasionally shaken by some that were pursuing or pursued ; and the valley continued to resound with their mingled cries till the depth of midnight.

(June 20.) Mr. Bonar, waking before sunrise wandered through the grove of fruit-trees toward the gate of the town. Finding it already opened, he entered. Wandering alone in the streets of Sychar at this early hour seemed like a dream. A Jewish boy vrron he met led him to the synagogue. It was small but clean, and quite full of worshippers. They meet for an hour at sunrise every day. There were perhaps fifty persons present, and every one wore the TephiUim, or phylacteries,

* Deut. uvii. 12.

212 SycharJacob's Well.

on the left hand and forehead, this being the custom at morning prayer. They seemed really devout, for they scarcely looked up to observe the entrance of a stranger till the service was done. At the close several came and spoke to him. He spoke a little Italian to one, and then tried German with another, finding that there were Jews from many different places. Some were from Spain, some from Russia, one from Aleppo, and a few were natives of Sychar. After conversing for a short time they separated, going home to breakfast.

Mr. Bonar engaged a very affable Jew to show him the road to Jacob's Well, who, after leading him through the town, gave him in charge to another that knew the place. They went out at the Eastern Gate and proceeded along the Vale of Sychar, keeping near the base of Gerizim for nearly two miles, till they arrived at a covered well, which is marked out by tradition as the memorable spot. It is immediately below the rocky path by which we had travelled the day before, at that point of the road where we turned from the spacious plain into the narrow vale, between Ebal and Gerizim. The guide removed a large stone that covers the mouth of the low vault built over the well; and then thrusting himself through the narrow aperture, invited Mr. Bonar to follow. This he accordingly did; and in the act of descending, his Bible escaping from his breast-pocket fell into the weU, and was soon heard plunging in the water far below. The guide made very significant signs that it could not be recovered, "for the well is deep." * The small chamber over the well's mouth appears to have been carefully built, and may have been originally the ledge which is often found round the mouth of Eastern wells, affording a resting-place for the weary traveller. But the well itself is cut out of the rock. Mr. Calhoun, who was here lately, found it seventy-five feet deep, with ten or twelve feet of water. In all the other wells and fountains which we saw in this valley the water is within reach of the hand, but in this one the water seems never to rise high. This is one of the clear evidences that it is really the Well of Jacob, for at this day it would require what it required in the days of our Lord, an "rfirX^a," "something to draw with, for it was deep." f On account of the great depth, the water would be peculiarly cool, and the associations that connected this well with their father

* Sec note at the end of this Chapter. r John iv. 11.


Jacob no doubt made it to be highly esteemed. For these reasons, although there is a line stream of water close by the west side of the town, at least two gushing fountains within the walls, and the fountain El Defna nearly a mile nearer the town, still the people of the town very naturally reverenced and frequented Jacob's Well. This may in part account for the Samaritan woman owning so far to draw water, even if the conjecture be disregarded that the town in former times extended much further to the east than it does now. The narrative itself seems to imply that the well was situated a considerable way from the town. He who "leads the blind by a way which they know not," drew the woman that day by the invisible cords of grace, past all other fountains, to the well where she was to meet with one who told her all that ever she did—the Saviour of the world and the Saviour of her soul.

The Romish hymn seemed peculiarly impressive when remembered on this hallowed spot:

Quterens me sedisti lassus,
Redemisti crucem passus,
Tantus labor non sit cassus!

(Weary—thou salst seeking me;
Crucified—thou setst me free;
Let not such pains fruitless be '-)

But nothing can equal the simple words of the Evangelist, "Jesus therefore being wearied with his journey sat thus on the well."

About a hundred yards off, to the north of the well, is Joseph's Tomb, a whited sepulchre, believed to mark the place where Joseph's bones were buried* The Jews frequently visit this tomb; and many Hebrew sentences are inscribed upon the walls. Whether by design or accident, we could not ascertain, a luxuriant vine had made its way over the wall that encloses the tomb, and was now waving its branches from the top, as if to recall to mind the prophetical description of this favoured tribe, given by the dying Jacob, "Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well, whose branches run over the wall."f The beautiful field around it is, no doubt, "the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph," taking it out of the hand of the Amorite, " with his sword and with his bow."J And this plain is the plain of Moreh, near to Sychar.} Some have fancifully con

• Josh. xxiv. 32. t Gen. zlix. 22.

t Gea xlviii. 22. * Gen. xii. b. Deut. xi. 30.


jectured the name to be derived from Jacob's exploit, at if it meant, "the plain of the Archer."

About eight o'clock, the rest of our company paid a visit to the town, to visit the Jews and Samaritans. Under a spreading nabbok-tree near the gate, we came upon five or six miserable objects, half-naked, dirty, and wasted by disease. Immediately on seeing us, they sprang up, and stretched out their arms, crying most imploringly for alms. We observed that some had lost their hands, and held up the withered stump, and that others were deformed in the face; but it did not occur to us at the time that these were lepers! We were afterwards told that they were so,—lepers on the outside of the city gate, like the ten men in the days of Jesus, who lifted up their voices, and cried, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us !"* Our Master, had he been with us, would have stood still, and said, "I will; be thou clean." On the nabbok-tree were hung many rags of cloth, of different colours. These are intended as sacred offerings, in accordance with a superstition of the Mahometans, which Was never fully explained to us, and which we saw frequently in other parts of the country.

We passed through the streets, and found a good example of the Eastern bazaar. It is a covered way, with a few windows in the roof; abundantly dark, but very cool and pleasant. There is a deep pathway in the middle unpaved, about three feet in breadth, along which mules or camels are allowed to pass. On each side of this, there is a raised stone pavement, very smooth and slippery, which is used as a place for the shopkeepers to sit or to display their goods. When not thus occupied, it may be used for walking. It is a strange sight to walk along, and observe the turbaned and bearded sellers sitting cross-legged, and smoking in every door-way. The presence of a stranger excites little curiosity among them in general. Often they disdain to lift their eyes. Finding out the Jewish quarter, we went to the synagogue, into which several Jews followed us. The little children also came round us, and the women looked in at the door. Our Hebrew Bible was soon produced, and the prophecies concerning Messiah formed the subject of our broken conversation. Dan. ix, Isaiah ix, liii, Ezek. xxxvi, xxxvii, and Jer. xxiii, were the passages read and commented on. The men were most willing to hear, and

* Luke xvii. 13.

handsomely atcirea; ne received us kindly, and conversed with great freedom.

Mr. Bonar having missed the rest of us, and hearing that we were gone to the Samaritan synagogue, persuaded a Jew to guide him thither. He led him to a shop in the bazaar, where a fine-looking man, tall and cleanly dressed, was sitting. The Jew's look was that of contempt, as he pointed out this man, saying he was "a Samaritan." The Samaritan kindly left his shop, and leading the way through many streets, arches, covered ways, and lanes, brought Mr. B. to the Synagogue. The old priest having made sure of obtaining a handsome present from us, now unlocked the door, and we, after taking off our shoes, were permitted to enter the synagogue, a clean airy apartment, having the floor covered with carpets. One-half of the floor was raised a little higher than the rest, and seemed to be used for sitting on during the reading of the law. On one side, there was a recess which we were not allowed to enter, where the sacred manuscripts are kept. After long delay, and the promise of a considerable sum (for he told us the sight was worth 150 piastres at any time,) the priest agreed to show us the copy of the Torah, or five books of Moses, which is so famed for its antiquity. They said that it was written by the hand of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, and is 3600 years old. It was taken out of its velvet cover, and part of it unrolled before us. The rollers were adorned with silver at the extremities, and the back of the manuscript was covered with green silk. It was certainly a very ancient manuscript. The parchment was much soiled and worn, but the letters were quite legible, written in the old Samaritan character. If this was the real copy


so much boasted of, the Samaritans have lost some of their superstition regarding it, for they allowed us to touch it. Several of their prayer-books were lying about, all written with the pen in the Samaritan character.

The Samaritans can speak very little Hebrew; their language is Arabic, but by means of our servant Ibraim, and a Jew who kept by us, we got our questions answered, and a good many remarks were made on both sides upon passages of Scripture. The son of the priest was an interesting young man, candid, and anxious to hear the truth. He admitted that the prophecy regarding "the seed of the woman" referred to the Messiah: and said that they still expect a prophet "like unto Moses." The Samaritans do not believe in the restoration of the Jews. They told us that there are about forty who attend the synagogue, and about 150 souls altogether belonging to their communion. The enmity between the Jews and the Samaritans is not now so great, nor so openly manifested, as once it was; but we could perceive that it still existed. We had seen a Samaritan sitting in the Jewish synagogue, and the Jew who accompanied us was now seated in the Samaritan synagogue: yet it was easy to see that the Jew was jealous of the attention which we paid to the Samaritans. After taking leave of the priest and his son, we were conducted again to the Jewish quarter. We found a Rabbi, an old grey-haired man, sitting in the synagogue, reading the Talmud. We spoke a good deal with him in Hebrew, chiefly pointing out " the Lord our righteousness." It was pleasant to speak even a word to a Jew, in the city where Jacob often dwelt; and to a Samaritan in the very place where Jesus said, "Lift up your eyes and look on the fields, for they are white already to the harvest."* Our Jewish guide next led u.s to a handsome fountain of water at the west end of the town within the walls. It seemed to be supplied from Mount Gerizim. He said that Jacob had built the walls of it.

A little Jew boy, named Mordecai, with sparkling bright eyes, had for some time kept fast hold of Mr. M'Cheyne's hand. He could speak nothing but Arabic; but by means of most expressive signs, he entreated Mr. M. to go with him. He consented, and the little boy, with the greatest joy, led him through streets and lanes, then opening a door, and leading the way up a stair, he

* John iv. 35.

On taking leave, the little guide urged him to pay another visit. He led the way to the Bazaar, and there stopped beside the shop of a merchant, a venerable-looking man, saying Yehndi, "a Jew." Sitting down on the stone pavement, the Hebrew Bible was produced, and the passage read was "the dry bones" of Ezekiel. Several Jews gathered round who could speak Italian or the Lingua Franca, and all joined in the discussion by turns. The merchant himself seemed to be a worldly Jew, and cared little about divine things; but some of the rest were interested. Leaving this group, the little Jew proposed to guide Mr. M. to the well of Jacob, which he said he knew. But the day was too far spent, as we had agreed to leave Sychar at noon. With difficulty, Mr. M. now prevailed upon little Mordecai to come with him to our tents, to receive a reward for all his kindness. Giving him a Hebrew tract for the Hazan, another for the old Jew in the Bazaar, and a third for his father, and putting a silver piece into his hand, which seemed to fill him with wonder, we bade farewell to little Mordecai.

We felt sorry to part so soon from such a scene as this. The twice-repeated blessing of fruitfulness put upon the land of Joseph lingers about the vale of Sychar still, " Blessed of the Lord be his land, for the precious things of heaven, for the dew, and for the deep that coucheth beneath, and for the precious fruits brought forth by the sun, and for the precious things put forth by the moon."* It seemed almost as if the Lord remembered still the kindness of its former people, and kept this natural beauty around it as a memorial.

* Deut. xxxiii. 13, 11. Gen. xlix 22.

time conversing with them, and then about one o clock bade farewell to them and to Sychar.

The road from this to Samaria is perhaps the best we travelled in all Palestine. It is a level, broad highway at the base of hills—no doubt once much frequented by the kings of Israel, who would keep the highway to their capital in good repair. The direction it takes is northwest for about one hour, and then over a ridge which may be regarded as a continuation of Ebal. The vale down which we rode was well watered everywhere; a fine stream meanders through it, and there are many wells; forming a complete contrast to the south part of the land.f The gardens on every hand are very luxuriant, the trees wearing their richest foliage; the fig, olive, and orange trees laden with fruit. We observed gardens of onions which seemed to rival those of Egypt. Many villages embosomed in trees also came in sight. A small village on the left was called Bet-Ouzin. Another on the hill Bet-Iba. Below this an old aqueduct having eleven arches crosses the valley, the water of which turns a mill. Before leaving the Valley of Nablous, we looked back and obtained a view of Ebal, strikingly rocky and sterile.

Our route now lay north-west over a considerable ridge, during the ascent of which we obtained a view of many distant villages; and among others Ramla, on an eminence. When we had gained the summit, the hill of Samaria came in sight, rising out of the plain to the height of about four hundred feet. It is an oblong hill sloping up toward the west, and has a considerable extent of table-land on the top. The plain, near the head of which it stands, stretches far to the west, and the moun

* See p 42 t Pa exxvi. 4.

_ ....„ „TM~ «««,., uic niiaciauic Village OI SUDUStCf

The ruin is one of the most sightly in the whole of Palestine. We ascended on foot by a narrow and steep pathway, which soon divides into two, and conducts past the foundations of the ruined church to the village. The pathway is enclosed by rude dykes, the stones of which are large and many of them carved, and these are piled rather than built upon one another. Some of them are loose and ready to fall. Many are peculiarly large, and have evidently belonged to ancient edifices. Indeed, the whole face of this part of the hill suggests the idea that the buildings of the ancient city had been thrown down from the brow of the hill.

Ascending to the top, we went round the whole summit, and found marks of the same process everywhere. The people of the country, in order to make room for their fields and gardens, have swept off the old houses, and poured the stones down into the valley. Masses of stone, and in one place two broken columns, are seen, as it were, on their way to the bottom of the hill. In the southern valley, we counted thirteen large heaps of stones, most of them piled up round the trunks of the olive-trees. The church above mentioned is the only solid ruin that now remains where the proud city once

• Micnh i 6.'

♦ Herod rebuilt the city and called it Sehaste, which means '• august, or venerable," in honour of Augustus Ciesar; but Uod hod written ita doom centuries bclbrc.


stood. In the houses of the villagers, we saw many pieces of ancient columns, often laid horizontally in the wall; in one place, a Corinthian capital, and in another, a finely-carved stone. Near the village, and in the midst of a cultivated field, stood six columns, bare and without their capitals, then seven more that appear to have formed the opposite side of the colonnade; and at a little distance about seventeen more. Again, on the north-east side, we found fourteen pillars standing. But the greatest number were on the north-western brow. Here we counted fifty-six columns in a double row at equal distances, all wanting the capital, many of them broken across, and some having only the base remaining. These ruins may be the remnant of some of Samaria's idolatrous temples, or more probably of a splendid arcade, which may have been carried completely round the city. And these are all that remain of Samaria, "the crown of pride!" The greater part of the top of the hill is used as a field; the crop had been reaped, and the villagers were busy at the thrashing-floor. Part of the southern side is thickly planted with figs, olives, and pomegranates. We found a solitary vine, the only representative of the luxuriant vineyards which once supplied the capital. At one fwint, a fox sprang across our path into the gardens, a iving witness of an unpeopled city.

It was most affecting to look round this scene of desolation, and to remember that this was the place where wicked Ahab built his house of Baal, where cruel Jezebel ruled, and where Elijah and Elisha did their wonders. But above all, it filled the mind with solemn awe to read over on the spot the words of God's prophet uttered 2500 years before—" / will make Samaria as an heap of the jield, and as plantings of a vineyard; and 1 will pour down the stones thereof into the valley, and I will discover the foundations thereof."* Every clause reveals a new feature in the desolation of Samaria, differing in all its details from the desolation of Jerusalem,! and every word has literally come to pass. We had found both on the summit and on the southern valley, at every little interval, heaps of ancient stones piled up, which had been gathered off the surface to clear it for cultivation. There can be no doubt that these stones once formed part of the temples, and palaces, and dwellings of Samaria, so that the word is fulfilled, "/ will viake Samaria

* Mic. i. 6. t See pages 130. 14S

stood has been tilled, sown, and reaped; and the buildings themselves rolled down over the brow of the hill. Of this, the heaps in the valley, the loose fragments in the rude dykes that run up the sides, and the broken columns on their way down into the valley, are witnesses; so that the destroyers of Samaria (whose very names are unknown), and the simple husbandman, have both unwittingly been fulfilling God's word, "/ will pour down the stones thereof into the valley." And last of all, we had noticed that many of the stones in the valley were large and massy, as if they had been foundation-stones of a building, and that in many parts of the vast colonnade nothing more than the bases of the pillars remain. But especially, we observed that the ruined church had been built upon foundations of a far older date than the church itself, the stones being of great size, and bevelled in a manner similar to the stones of the temple wall at Jerusalem, and those of the mosque at Hebron; and these foundations were now quite exposed. So that the last clause of the prophecy is fulfilled with the same awful minuteness, " / will discover the foundations thereof." Surely there is more than enough in the fulfilment of this fourfold prediction to condemn, if it does not convince, the infidel.

We examined the old church at the east end of the hill. , It is a massy substantial building, supposed to have been built in the time of the Crusades, as there are many crosses of the templars on its architecture. The Moslems have broken away one of the limbs of each of the crosses in their zeal to shape them into the form of a crescent. Within the area of the church, there is a tomb

• The word in the original may signify either the bare vine-shoota. or the plat of ground where the vines are planted.

wine." * The valley near the head of which the hill of Samaria stands, is even now rich in olive-trees, and probably abounded in vineyards and gardens in former days, while the hill itself, covered with palaces and towers, rose over it like a glorious crown. The natural strength of the position of the city at once suggested the true force of the words of Amos, " Wo to them that trust in the mountain of Samaria." f

Within half an hour's distance of the hill on the north and south, and still nearer on the east, the ring of lofty hills which enclose the valley of Samaria begins to rise. These are what the Scripture calls " the mountains of Samaria." They encompass the city, so that in the days of Israel's glory, when they were all clad in vineyards, the capital would appear encircled by plenty and luxuriance. The days are coming, when these same "mountains of Samaria" shall again be clothed more luxuriantly than ever, and cultivated by the hands of ransomed Israel; for the same unerring word that foretold the present desolation, has foretold the coming glory, "Thou shalt yet plant vines upon the mountains of Samaria; the planters shall plant, and shall eat them as common things." J

We remembered the history of the siege of Samaria by Ben-Hadad, the king of Syria,} and observed how easy it would be to shut in such a city on every side, so

• Isa. xxviii. 1. Ser I,owth's Note. t Amos. vi . L

{ Jer. xxxi. 5. i 2 Kingt vi 24

royal magnificence, for Philip brought them joy from the fountain of life.

Regaining the public road, we proceeded due north to the foot of the hills which enclose the valley of Samaria, having high on our right a village called " Cet-emireen," "the house of Emirs." In about half an hour we began to ascend, and came to a romantic village called Bourka, half-way up the mountain. The peasants were all actively engaged at the thrashing-floor; their houses were built entirely of mud, but pleasantly surrounded by olive-trees, out of which the voice of the turtle sounded sweetly as we passed. Looking back we saw the whole of " the fat valley" beautifully illumined by the last rays of the setting sun. A very steep and difficult ascent soon brought us to the summit of the ridge, when a magnificent scene burst on our view. To the west lay the Mediterranean Sea, and that part of the plain of Sharon which stretches to ancient Cfesarea; to the north, immediately beneath us, Wady Gaba, a fine valley or undulating plain, which seemed like a Paradise, watered by a winding stream, and abounding in olive-trees. This stream we afterwards conjectured to be the brook Kanah mentioned in Joshua.J To the north-east rose the hills of Galilee, among which we thought we could distinguish Mount Tubor in the distance. At the head of the valley below, appeared a sheet of water, the first we had yet seen in this country. Slanting down the mountain side, which the Arabs called Jebel Gaba, in a north-easterly direction, we passed through the small village Matalish, and then through the village of Gaba; the latter may possibly indicate the position of

• 2 Kings vii. 17. t Acts x. 9.

I Actt vni. a t Josh. xvi. 8; xvii. 9

seen in the southern parts of the country,—as if the blessing put "upon the crown of the head of him that was separated from his brethren," had not yet passed away.

We rode alongside of the large sheet of water which we had seen the night before at the head of the valley. The Arabs called it Merj Ibnama. It is merely a gathering of water left by the latter rains, and is often dried up in summer. A much larger supply of rain than usual had fallen this year, which accounted for its being so full at this advanced season. It resembled not a little the Compensation Pond among the Pentland Hills near Edinburgh.

We came upon two men ploughing with oxen, and noticed that they held the plough only with one hand. The soil appeared rich and fertile. Thousands of a blue starshaped flower, the name of which we did not know, decked the ground, mingled here and there with the pink, anemone, a very large species of convolvulus, and the tall plants of the lavatera. The beautiful hills all round the plain were clothed with brushwood, with olives and figtrees sometimes running up a short way from their base.

Leaving this pleasant vale, we soon came to a height from which the hills of Galilee ncain came in view. From this we descended a rocky pass into a rich olive valley, with yellow corn-fields beyond and found the

* I Kings xv. 27; xvi. 15.


large Arab village of Gabatieh. Some of the houses were well built of stone, others were entirely of mud. They had no windows except loopholes, and these generally looking into the court of the house; the doors also were very low, perhaps for the purpose of defence. Emerging from the olive-grove we got a full sight of its beauty, and again remembered the many Scriptures which compare the soul of a thriving believer to a green and vigorous olivetree.* Two things seem invariably united in this land, namely, the voice of the turtle wherever there is an olivegrove, and a village wherever the eye discerns verdure.

We met here, and oflen afterwards throughout the day, camels carrying home the harvest, with tinkling bells hanging from their neck. Many splendidly coloured butterflies were on the wing, and lizards without number were seen basking upon the rocks. Descending a ravine, still to the north-east, on the banks of a small stream running in the same direction, we reached Jenin in three hours from Sanour. This is the frontier town of the great plain of Esdraelon in this direction, so that it must always have been a place of some importance. It is believed to be the ancient Ginrea, mentioned in the wars of Josephus. It is still a considerable town, surrounded with gardens and hedges of prickly pear, interspersed with a few graceful palm-trees, over which rises a mosque with its pointed minaret. The Bedouin camel-drivers seem to make it a place of rendezvous. Many of their brown tents were planted near, closely resembling our gipsy encampments; and in one of their herds we counted as many as thirty camels. We halted for a short time under the shade of a spreading tree, while our servants went into the town to buy provisions.

Turning now to the N. W. we began to move along the edge of the plain of Esdraelon, the ancient valley q/ Jezreel. Very large fields of ripe barley occasionally occurred, sometimes a grove of olive-trees, but oftener the plain was waste and given over to thorns. It is melancholy to traverse the finest spots in this land, and to find them open and desolate. Even the highways are gone, along which the chariots of the kings of Jezreel used to run. The times of Shamgur are returned—" In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were unoccupied, and the travellers walked through byways." f The threatening of Moses

• See p. 106. t Judfr v. 6.

df the same valley that good king Josiah came to fight with Pharaoh Necho in the valley of Megiddo, when the archers shot at him and wounded him in his chariot, and he died. IT

Leaving the plain we entered among the low swelling hills on the west near a village, Bourkeen, in less than three hours from Jenin, and arrived at Ramouni, (that is, "pomegranate,") a village finely embosomed in figtrees, olives, and pomegranates, from the midst of which came the voice of the blackbird and turtle-dove. Could this be Hadad-rimmon, of which Zechariah speaks, and which was near the valley of Megiddo ?** There is space for a large town here, and there are many reservoirs of water, which show that it has been a place of some importance. Flocks of goats were couching by the well, and the Arab women were milking them, while a boy drew water in a skin and poured it into the trough. Our way lay westward over the slope of low undulating hills, covered with the carob-tree, and evergreen oak, a finely wooded wilderness. Immense thistles, having heads of a rich violet hue, Spina Christi, lavatera, convolvulus, and our common hollyhock, were the most abundant plants. We encamped at noon under the deep shade of a carob-tree of unusual size, and employed ourselves in writing up our notes and gathering wild flowers. Leaving at three o'clock, we rode through a fine sylvan solitude, hills and dales, all wild and seemingly untrodden, yet lor encamping near another village called Dalee. The frogs kept up an incessant croaking in the wady below, and the fire-flies glistened in the dusky air. Ibraim brought a plentiful supply of rich goat's milk from the village, a refreshing accompaniment to our evening meal. We had this day been passing through a portion of the land whose luxuriance used to be proverbial, and yet we had seen little else than a labyrinth of thorns and briery plants. Isaiah xxxii. 13, again came to mind, and the remembrance was soothing, for as certainly as the curse has been fulfilled, so shall the blessing—" the Spirit, shall be poured out from on high, and the wilderness be a fruitful field."

* Lev. xxvi. 34. t Josh. xvii. 16. t Judg. iv. 15; v. 19.

$ 1 Kings xviii. 44. II 2 Kings ix. 20. U 2 Chron. xxxv. 23 .

•• Zech. xii. 11.

Next morning (June 22), as we left the poor village of Dalee, we noticed the women carrying their children, some on their sides and some on their shoulder. We were now traversing the portion of Issachar, whose "land was pleasant," and out of which princes came to the help of Deborah: yet now the pasture was scorched and withered, and the only traces of fertility were a few patches of barley and tobacco. As we approached the sea a cool breeze sprung up, which tempered the excessive heat of the morning. For about an hour after resuming our journey, the same features as before prevailed over the country, the only variety being a few Bedouin tents, "tents of Kedar." In about an hour we began to cucumDers. T

Instead of entering the village, we turned to the right into a wild pass between wooded hills, which in a short time became a rocky defile, with a single sharp-pointed rock overhanging the entrance. Climbing up to this rocky pinnacle, we found some deep natural caves, which may have afforded a shelter to the prophets in the days of Elijah. The defile down which we had come issues suddenly into the narrow plain along the sea-shore, which is a continuation of the plain of Sharon. From the rocky height this plain lay stretched at our feet, and on the shore there were heaps of rubbish without any definite ruin, which mark the situation of Tortura, the ancient Dor, nine miles north of Caesarea, one of the towns out of which Manasseh was not able to drive the Canaanites.J On the rocks above us we saw the vulture perched looking out for his prey. After slanting across the plain, which was covered sometimes with fields of barley, sometimes with sesamine, and still oftener lay waste, our road lay parallel to the shore, and within view of it; at length we came upon the shore of the Mediterranean, happy again to meet its deep blue waters. Proceeding north, we came in about an hour to a small stream which here runs into the sea; its banks were skirted with tall oleanders in full bloom, and as we forded the stream many tortoises dropt into the water from the banks. Soon after, looking back we saw on a projecting point of the shore some conspicuous ruins of pillars and ancient buildings. The place is called by the Arabs Athlete, and anciently Castellum Peregrinorum. We were anxious to press forward, and therefore did not turn aside to examine the ruins.

We remembered with interest that we were now in Paul's footsteps, when he travelled with a few friends in • l*i. lvii. 5. t Im. i. 8. J Josh. xvii. U. 12.

couching round them, or wandering along the beach. It was an animating scene, and would have been more so had we not known that this was the station where we must perform quarantine. The plague had been for a long time prevailing in several parts of the south of Palestine, but it had not spread to the north of Carmel. Accordingly, all travellers from the south were obliged to rest here in quarantine for fourteen days, or, if they consented to have all their clothes bathed in the sea, for seven days. We pitched on the shore, the waves of the sea almost washing the cords of our tents, and an Egyptian soldier, a simple good-natured man, was appointed our guardiano, to see that we touched nobody; for should it happen that any one touch the person, or clothes, or cord of a tent, of any other party in, they are obliged to begin their days of quarantine anew.

The view which we enjoyed from our tent-door was every way splendid. The deep blue Mediterranean was in front of us, bounded only by the horizon. On the right was the beautiful Bay of Acre, round the whole sweep of which the eye could wander, uninterrupted except by the distant battlements of the town, or by small native vessels sailing past. In the distant background rose Jebel Sheikh, the ancient Hermon,\ which "the Si• Acta xxi. a t Deut . iii 9.

again." f In the cool of the evening we wandered far from the tents, and had delightful leisure and retirement, and every assistance from association, to spread before God the case of our own souls, our people, our land, and our journey in behalf of Israel. We longed for the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous Elijah.

The greater part of Monday was occupied in dipping our tents, clothes, &c, in the sea, while our books and papers were all fumigated,—inconveniences to which we willingly submitted that our quarantine might be shortened to seven days. It seems very doubtful whether quarantines, as at present conducted, serve any good purpose. A traveller whose tent was next to ours told us that his servant, anxious to spare a handsome coat from being plunged in the salt-water, hung it up among the drying clothes as if it had been immersed in the sea. Our own guardiano, whenever he came to any article of value, proposed with a look of inexpressible cunning, to bury it in the sand till the fumigating was over, and seemed not to understand why we would not agree to it. The operations of this day made us understand better the command so frequently given in the ceremonial law, "He shall wash his clothes and be unclean till evening."}

The remaining days of this week were spent in extending our notes, writing letters to the Committee of our Church, and to friends at home, in preparing ourselves for further inquiries concerning Israel, and in soli*

• Song iv. 8. t 1 Kings xviii. 43. I Lev. xi. 40. 'fcc

with us; and in a tent at some distance from us, Lord Rokeby, an English nobleman, who also had been travelling in these countries. Stretched upon the sand at respectful distances, under the eye of our guardiano, we held friendly conferences on the wonders we had seen. Dr. Keith frequently applied and expounded the prophecies of the Word of God. On one occasion, in speaking of the wild animals that are found in the land at present, Lord Hamilton mentioned that his servant had seen during the preceding night two lynxes from Mount Carmel, with bright glaring eyes, quite near the tents. Near the Jordan, too, they had seen many wild boars and lynxes; and at Jenin, before dawn one morning, his servant had seen sixteen hyenas at one time.

Sometimes when the tide retired (for there is an ebb and flow of a few feet at this place), we gathered shells and sponge among the rocks. VVe saw some of our neighbours seeking for specimens of the shell-fish from which, in ancient times, used to be extracted the famous purple dye. VVe did not see them find any specimens, but were told that still this is found here. It used to be found in all parts of the Bay, and there were two kinds of it. One of these yielded a dark blue colour, the other a brighter tint, like scarlet; and by mingling together these two juices, the true purple colour was obtained. It was thus that Asher, whose rich and beautiful plain supplied viands fit for the table of kings, yielded also the dye of their royal robes, conveyed to many a distant


court by the merchants of Tyre and Sidon. And thus we see the full meaning of Jacob's blessing on Asher "he shall yield royal dainties." *

Grasshoppers abounded in the fields between the short and the hill, and we found a few scorpions of a black colour; small, but dangerous on account of their venom. One evening, when we were walking along -the beach, our guardiano discovered one. He instantly stamped upon it with his foot, and afterwards showed us its sting. This reminded us of the asp on whose hole the " sucking child shall play."f

We enjoyed the view of several magnificent sunsets here. One evening especially the sun went down behind the great waters, tinging a vast array of fleecy clouds with the most gorgeous crimson. In the course of the week, Sir Moses Montefiore and his company arrived in quarantine, pitching their tents a little way to the south of us. He kindly sent us a present of a fine water-melon, and afterwards two bottles of the " wine of Lebanon," procured from the convent on Mount Carmel . If this was a fair sample of that famous wine, it must have lost much of its excellence since the days of Hosea,J for it is not very pleasant to the taste. It has the same peculiar flavour with the wine of Cyprus, a flavour said to be communicated by the tar put upon the thread with which the skins containing the wine are sewed. Sir Moses and Dr. Keith frequently walked on the beach, conversing on the prophecies that had been fulfilled in the desolations of the land, a subject to which the former had evidently paid a good deal of attention; but he positively declined all reference to the New Testament . During the greater part of Saturday, although the heat was very great, he and his lady, and a medical attendant, who was a very bigoted Jew, went through the Jewish service with scrupulous attention.

On Friday evening (June 28), a party of Egyptian Arab soldiers of the Pasha came into quarantine and encamped beside us. They were rude undisciplined barbarians, having nothing but their pikes and muskets, which they fixed by sticking the bayonets into the sand. They had often noisy quarrels with one another, and sometimes as we passed their tents, half in jest, half in found the references in regard to other places. But the regulations of quarantine would not permit us to wander to so great a distance. For the present, therefore, we were satisfied to skirt ttie foot of the hill, and to examine the large caverns which are to be found there. The limestone rock of this mountain abounds in them; and in some such cave Obadiah hid the Lord's prophets, and fed them with bread and water, f We were assured that there are no caves on the summit of the mountain, so that it cannot be in reference to them that Amos speaks of sinners hiding "in the top of Carmel." J

* Gen. xlix. 20. The original word O'Jirc means whatever delights and regales, and ita cognate is expressly applied lo drra in 2 Sam. i. 24.

t Ina. xi. 8. t Hos. xiv. 7.

On Sabbath morning (June 30,) after worshipping together in our tent, we had separated for the day topass the forenoon in retirement, when suddenly we were roused by hearing loud cannonading from the opposite side of the bay, and, looking up, saw the town of Acre enveloped in smoke. This continued for nearly an hour. What it meant we could not imagine; but at last a courier arrived from Acre, to announce that the Pasha's army had gained a great victory at Nezib, and that he had commanded all the large towns to celebrate it by rejoicings during three days. This information was good news to us, and for a time set our minds considerably at rest. Our days of quarantine were now expired, though we did not intend to leave till Monday; but the question with us was,—Are we to cross the country to Galilee, to inquire into the state of the Jews in that interesting region, or must we give up this fondly-cherished hope^and • Pee p. 61. t 1 Kings xviii. 13. } Amos ix. 3.

vide horses lor us on the morrow, since in that case he would be held responsible for our safety. Our course was now decided, and we made up our minds to sail along the coast to Beyrout.

Meanwhile, in the cool of evening, we ascended Mount Carmel by a deep and rocky ravine a little way to the south. We conversed together on Elijah's wonderful answer to prayer obtained on this mountain, and felt that we could well spend the evening of the holy day in such a place. Having soon reached the summit, a considerable way above the Latin Convent, we sat down at a point commanding a full view of the sea to the west and to the north. Near this must have been the spot where Elijah prayed when he went up to the top of Carmel, and cast himself down upon the earth and put his face between his knees, and said to his servant, "Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up, and looked, and said, There is nothing. And Elijah said, 'Go again,' seven times."* There we united in praying for abundance of rain to our own souls, our friends, and our people, and for the progress of our mission, which seemed for a time impeded. It was awfully solemn to kneel on the lonely top of Carmel. The sun was going down beyond the sea, the air was cool and delightfully pure scarcely a breath of wind stirred the leaves, yet the fragrant shrubs diffused their pleasant odours on every side. A true Sabbath stillness rested on the sea and on the hill. The sea washes the foot of the hill on each side, and stretches out full in front till lost in the distance. To the east and north-east lies that extension of the splendid plain of Esdraelon which reaches to the white walls of Acre, and through which "that ancient river, * 1 Kings xviii. 42, 43 .

two opinions!" and from this sea they carried up the water that drenched his altar; and here they fell on their faces and cried, " Jehovah, he is the God ! Jehovah, he is the God!"

The view we obtained that evening on Mount Carmel can never be forgotten. No scene we had witnessed surpassed its magnificence, and the features of it are still as fresh in our memory as if we had gazed on it but yesterday. It was, moreover, a most instructive scene; we saw at once the solution "of all our difficulties in regard to the Scriptural references to this hill. Carmel is not remarkable for height; and is nowhere in Scripture celebrated for its loftiness. At the point overhanging the sea, we have seen that it is less than 900 feet high. To the south-east it rises to the height of 1200 feet, which is its greatest altitude. But then the range of hills runs nearly eight miles into the country, and was in former days fruitful to a proverb. Indeed, the name Carmel, signifying "a fruitful field," was given to it evidently for this reason. And when this vast extent of fruitful hills was covered over with vineyards, olive-groves, and orchards of figs and almond-trees, not on the sides alone, but also along the table-land of its summit—would not Carmel, worthy of the name, appear an immense hanging garden in the midst of the land! in the days of its pristine luxuriance, before the curse of God blasted its glory, "the excelloney of Carmel," f of which the prophet speaks, must have been truly wonderful! How easy at that time it would have been "to hide in the top of Carmel ;" I for embowering vines and deep shady fig-trees would afford a covert for many a mile along the summit.

* Judg. v. 21. t Isi. xxxv 2. { Amos ix. 3.

grow at the northern roots of the hill, and some extend a short way up the side; but the extensive summit, which was once like a garden, was covered as far as our eye reached with wild mountain shrubs and briery plants, all of stunted growth, except where the rock lay bare and without verdure under the scorching sun. The same God who said, "Zion shall be ploughed like a field," and "I will pour the stones of Samaria down into the valley," said also, "The top of Carmel shall wither;" \ and that word we saw before our eyes fulfilled to the letter.

We had a fine chain of Divine truth before us in the references made by the prophets to this mountain. Amos represents the guilty sinner detected, though he was to hide in its top, or plunge into the sea at its foot . Solomon shows the sinner justified in a Redeemer's righteousness, beautiful as Carmel. Micah alludes to its rich pastures, when he would express the care of the great Shepherd in feeding his justified ones, or restored Israel, and says, "Feed thy people, which (at present) dwell solitary in the wood, in the midst of CarmtL" 5 And when Isaiah would describe the fruitfiilness and beauty of the New Earth, he can say nothing higher than this, "The excellency of Carmel shall be given unto it."

Refreshed in spirit, we descended through a deep ravine, each side of which was fragrant with sweetsmelling briers. Among other plants there was abundance of the Pnterium spinosum, such as we had found in the Valley of Eshcol. We reached the shore before it was dark.

Early next morning, (July 1) we saw an interesting

* Song vii. 5. t 2 Chron. xrvi. 10.

i Amos i. 2. § Mic. vii 14.


scene. About twenty Jews from Khaifa came along the shore to the tent of Sir Moses Monteliore, to show hirn respect before his departure. They were of all ages, and most of theru dressed in the Eastern manner. lt was affecting to see so many of them marching in a body in their own land.

Having determined to sail from Khaifa to Beyrout in a coasting vessel, we struck our tents, passed the barrier, and bade farewell to the quarantine and our kindly guardiano. We proceeded through the little plain of Khaifa, by the foot of Carmel on the north, rich in vegetable gardens, with some tine figs and olives. The entrance to the town is between hedges of prickly pear. Here we met an old Jew, originally from Vienna, who had been unable to keep up with the rest in their visit to Sir Moses, and was lingering near the town; he wore the broadbrimmed German hat and black Polish gown. We spoke to him in German, and found him very affable. He took two German tracts and one in Hebrew, and after briefly telling him, in Scripture language, his need of pardon, and that it came through Messiah, we separated, never to meet till the day of Christ.

A simple incident here vividly recalled a Scripture narrative.* A young Jew who had been out at the quarantine, was returning before us; and he had come away, probably, before the morning meal, and now felt hungry, for he stopped under a spreading fig-tree, and, looking up, searched the branches for a ripe fig, but in vain.

Khaifa is enclosed with walls, and appeared a neat little town. We found our way to the synagogue, and by this time most of the Jews had returned from their visit to Sir Moses. There were about thirty in the synagogue, all wearing the Tallith or shawl with fringes, and the Tephillim or phylacteries, because this was the hour of morning prayer. We conversed a little with three or four Russian Jews who spoke German, and told them our object in coming from Scotland. On our asking what they expected Messiah would do at his coming, one of them said nobody could ever know that; and this he proved by turning to Daniel xii. 9,—" The words are closed up and sealed to the time of the end." In this way he evaded the subject of a suffering Messiah. We showed them from Isaiah i. 15, "When ye make many prayers I will not hear," that their many prayers would not justify them before God. They answered, "We do not

• Matt . xxi. 18, 19.

sailors so famous of old. As we sailed, the town looked well from the sea, adorned with some graceful palm-trees. The flags of Britain and France were floating together on the roof of the Vice-Consul's house, and the Egyptian flag, bearing the crescent and star on a blood-red ground, waved over the fort . Behind rose Mount Carmel, stretching into the country in what seemed an unbroken range, bare and withered; and we could now understand well the prophet's description, "Carmel by the sea," * for its northern extremity seems to descend into the very waters. The swell of the sea soon became unpleasant, the vessel rocked with every breeze, and we were exposed unprotected to the burning rays of the sun. We sailed past Acre, presenting a fine but not a formidable appearance. It is the ancient Ptolemais, where Paul abode one day.f The men soon after pointed to Zeeb, the ancient Achzib, one of the cities of Asher, from which he could not drive the Canaanites.J It stands upon a slope near the sea. By sunset we were opposite Tyre, "the strong city," and could distinguish clearly the part that was once an island. Here the breeze died away, and we were becalmed for many hours. We spent a painful night exposed to the heavy dew; but remembering how our Master slept in just such a vessel as this, we were still. At break of day we found ourselves opposite Saida, the ancient Zulon, and could hear the distant sound of the rejoicings in the town in honour of the recent victory. Soon the range of Lebanon appeared,

* Jer. xlvi. 1a t Acts xxi. 7. t Josh. xix. 29. Judg i. 31.

emit i~iupi'iug wi nuuuj , disiui* Hucwuiicu ii l 1'iim i ii n ii 11>,

and some had mock-fights to the sound of music. We were glad to find refuge in the inn of Giuseppe, a Greek Christian, the first inn we had met with since leaving Alexandria.

We were soon waited on by two of the American Missionaries who are stationed here, Mr. Thompson and Mr. Hebard, who showed us every kindness. They seemed to be earnest, devoted men, and have been blessed with considerable success. They have a regular Arabic service every Lord's day, attended by sometimes more than a hundred hearers, who are chiefly Christians of the Greek, Latin, and Armenian Churches. They have very efficient Sabbath schools for the young, and their week-day schools are attended by sixty boys and forty girls. In addition to these, they have a seminary for raising up native teachers, attended at present by about twenty Syrians. At this institution they first make trial of the boys for two months, and if in that time they do not evince sufficient aptitude or talent, their instruction is not carried further. Some of those attending are Arabs; one is an Armenian, one a Maronite, one a Druse; and a few belong to the Greek Church. The Missionaries have baptized eighteen persons since the commencement of their labours in this country. The Roman Catholics, and still more the Maronites, are theh most implacable and bigoted adversaries, throwing every

* Jer. xxii. 6, alludes to this prominent and majestic view of Lebanon. The true rendering of the whole verse is perhaps as follows:—" Thou, head of Lebanon, art Ciilead (i. e. the heap of witiuni) to me; surely I will make thee a wilderness of uninhabited cities!"—that is, I call upon the towering heights of Lebanon to bear witness that I will do this.

sionary than the prejudiced Maronites.

Several of the resident merchants also showed us much attention, especially Mr. Heald, Mr. Kilbee, and some of our Scottish countrymen, among whom was Mr. Kinnear, who has since given so interesting an account of his sojourn in the East. By a kind providence also, we now met with Erasmus Scott Caiman, a believing Jew, newly arrived from England. We had become acquainted with him in London, and were now providentially brought together, for he was destined to be our kind companion and fellow-traveller from that day till we arrived in England. We had also much joy in meeting with Mr. Pieritz, once Jewish Rabbi at Yarmouth, now Missionary of the London Society, along with Mr. Levi and Dr. Gerstmann, both converted Jews and labourers in the vineyard, the former laid aside for a time through bad health, the other, the medical missionary at Jerusalem. Some of the Syrian young men belonging to the American seminary were very kind and attentive to us, especially two who could speak English very well, named Abdallah and Habib. The latter said, " My name is Habib, that is,' friend,' so when you want any thing you must call Habib." Frequently during our stay at Beyrout, we visited the residences of the American Missionaries, delightfully situated on the high ground to the south of the town, and about half a mile distant, in the midst of mulberry gardens.

From the roof and windows of Mr. Thompson's house we enjoyed a splendid prospect. The coast of Syria, indented with numerous bays stretched far to the north. But we were chiefly occupied with the view of majestic Lebanon. It is a noble range of mountains, well worthy of the fame it has so long maintained. It is cul

snow was gleaming in many of its highest crevices, reminding ns of the prophet's question, " Will a man leave the snow of Lebanon !" + In coming through the bazaar we had seen large masses of it exposed for sale. The merchants slice it off the lump, and sell it to customers for cooling wine and other liquors, and it is often mixed with a sweet syrup and drunk in passing as a refreshing beverage. Not far from Sannin the ancient cedars are found, a memorial of the glory of Lebanon. Cedars of smaller size are found also in other parts of the mountain.

There are nearly 200,000 inhabitants in the villages of Lebanon, a population exceeding that of all the rest of Palestine. This may give us an idea of the former "glory of Lebanon," J and may explain the ardent wish of Moses, "I pray thee, let me go over and see the good land that is beyond Jordan, that goodly mountain, even Lebanon." }

Not many miles east of Beyrout, over the ridge of Lebanon, lies the beautiful vale of Coele-Syria (hollow Syria) between Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon. It is said to be most fertile, and abounds in plentiful springs of water, which may perhaps be some of the " streams from Lebanon." || At the northern extremity of that vale there is a considerable town called Hamah, supposed to be the ancient Hamath. The narrow entrance of this fine valley may be "the entrance of Hamath," in the northern portion of the land which God gave to Israel.1T Ezekiel xlvii. 16, joins it with Berothah, the very Beyrout where we then stood. Mr. Thompson informed us of the death

* Song v. 15. t Jer. xviii. 14. t Isa. xxxv. 2.

5 Deut iii- 25. II Song iv. 15 1 Num. xxxiv. 8

large square, witn buildings rouna tne lour sides, tne lower part affording accommodation for the animals; the upper, furnished with a gallery all round, intended for the travellers themselves. On the eastern side of the town there is a Moslem burying-ground, with a solitary cypress rising over the tombs. It was pleasant to wander there and look out upon the calm glassy sea and Lebanon. Nothing can surpass the softness of the Syrian sky at evening. At such an hour we used to see many of the citizens with their children on the roofs of their houses, enjoying the cool evening air. Some even sleep upon the roof at this season of the year. Beyrout is one of the hottest towns in all Syria. The thermometer stood generally at 85° or 90° F. during the day, but often rose to 96° during the night. The reason of this seems to be, that there is little or no land breeze, owing to the proximity of the mountains, so that there is perfect stillness in the air till morning, when the sea breeze commences.

There are about 200 Jews in Beyrout. We visited them and their synagogue on Friday evening at the commencement of the Jewish Sabbath. We found them generally ignorant men, with little of peculiar interest in their character.

From Mr. Pieritz, the noissionarythentioncd above, we received much important information. Speaking of the best Stations for the labours of a Jewish missionary, he mentioned the Grand Dutrhy nf I'uscn as one of the most promising fields in the whole world. There are nearly 100,UOO Jews there, among whom the London Society have sent three labourers; but there is room for thirty. The Jews there have been enlightened so far as to be loosened from the Talmud, and yet they are not Rationalists. This may be accounted for by their situa


tion among Protestant Christians. Nearly one-half of all the Jewish converts are from that country, among whom are three of the Jerusalem labourers.

In M-Udavin and H'allachia there is another great field, hitherto untried. The cheapness of living there is extraordinary, and the resources of commerce are great and unoccupied, so that Jewish inquirers and converts could easily support themselves independently of their brethren. J udeo-Polish and Judeo-German are the languages they speak.

From personal observation, he also mentioned Gibraltar as a desirable missionary station. On one side lies the coast of Barbary, all lined with Jews, each of its towns having several thousands, and these men of singular industry. On the other side are Spain and Portugal, where are many called " New Christians," who are all baptized Jews, to whom a prudent missionary might find access. In Gibraltar itself are about 2000 Jews, speaking Hebrew and Spanish; many of whom at present allow their children to attend Christian schools there. A knowledge of the Arabic language is required by a labourer on the Barbary coast, and Judeo-Spanish on the European side.

Mr. Pieritz spoke further upon the subject of Tracts Tor The Jews. The most useful tract for a Jew is a plain Christian tract, such as one would give to a careless professing Christian, setting before him the simple truth of his lost condition, and the death and atonement of Christ. This is much better than a deficient controversial tract. If it is controversial, it ought to be complete, for otherwise a Jew, accustomed as he is, by studying the Talmud, to acute reasoning, will soon see its deficiency and throw it aside. The tract " Helps to Self-examination" is good, because it sets before them the law that convinces of sin, and closes with prayer for light. "The City of Refuge" is another that Mr. Nicolayson considered useful.

Some of Mr. Pieritz's anecdotes regarding the Jews in Palestine were very interesting. In Jerusalem, a Jew named Munsternetze, when pressed much to read the Bible for himself, replied, "But I am afraid." "Why?" "Because (said lie) I have a wife and children." He meant, that if he were to study the Bible, he would be convinced of the truth, and would, through the enmity of the Jews, reduce his family to poverty. Six weeks after Mr. Pieritz came there, a learned Jew, named Joseph, visited his house to converse wit'i him, and remained from ten in the morning till five at night, and the result was, that he would not read his rabbinical books which says, "/ thank thee for commanding" such and such things, although no command has been given for it in the Bible. He felt the force of this at once, and on going home, finding the table spread to usher in the Sabbath, declined the service. His friends became suspicious of him; but his change became public in an unexpected way. A Mahometan was in the room one day, to whom Mr. Pieritz said, " that the unbelief of the Jews was no objection to Christianity, as many of them did believe," appealing to Joseph, who boldly assented. The Mahometan told this to the Jews, and Jerusalem was turned upside down. An excommunication was pronounced upon Joseph, so awful that the whole synagogue were in tears. They then forced him to divorce his wife, and, by repeated solicitations, to leave Jerusalem for Constantinople, whither he went, seeking Christian baptism. On another occasion, a public controversy was held, in which Rabbi Benjamin was spokesman in favour of the Talmud. It did not last long, but three months after, he came to Mr. Pieritz to say, that though convinced at the time that himself had the best of the argument, yet, on going home, he had been led to reflect and inquire. Another day, he and Rabbi Eleazar came both together with a list of questions written, but went away without proposing them, after hearing Mr. Pieritz's statement of the truth. They began to read the New Testament together. One evening, while thus engaged in one of .heir houses, Rabbi Abraham came in unexpectedly •


they tried to hide their books, but he insisted on seeing them. Upon a vow of secrecy, they showed their New Testaments. He was very angry, but agreed to go with them to visit Mr. Pieritz. He came full of fire against Christianity. He began by showing the inaccuracy of the quotation about Bethlehem-Ephratah in Matt, ii, and said many acute things; but Mr. Pieritz kept to the statement of the gospel. Rabbi Abraham soon became the most earnest of the three in his love for Christianity, and all determined to make an open profession.* Two of them belong to the best Jewish families in Russia. Chaii or Hyman Paul, a young man, became convinced of the truth and was baptized. He used to go to the convent and argue with Roman Catholics, telling them that they could not be true Christians, because they did not care for the Jews, but hated them. On one occasion they ordered him out.

On the subject of Prophecy, Mr. Pieritz agreed in the sentiments of Mr. Nicolayson that it is quite necessary for a missionary to hold the literal interpretation of prophecy. He mentioned that some Jews in Poland condemn parts of Abarbinel for spiritualizing. The Jews feel their dispersion to be literal; and therefore if you explain unfulfilled prophecy by saying it is spiritual, they reckon you a kind of infidel. If you say that "a wolf" does not mean a wolf but a bad man, that " Zion" means the church, and " redeeming Israel" not redeeming Israel but something else, and yet try to convince them of the truth of Christianity from the Bible, they think that you

Jourself do not believe the Bible. In arguing with the ews, it is sometimes of importance to show the similarity between Rabbinism and Popery.f and that they have the same author. One day a Jew referred to the follies transacted at the Holy Sepulchre, and said, "that religion cannot be true." The missionary replied, "They do just as you do; they add to the New Testament, and you add to the Old." Like the Papists, the Jews do not approve of a man reading much of the Bible, because it leads him to speculate, and they say the Rabbinical commentaries contain as much as it is proper to know. The parts of scripture read in the synagogue, are generally passages that do not directly instruct in doctrine. For example, they read the 52d and 54th chapters of Isaiah, but omit the 53d.

• The Jewish Intelligence for April 1840, gives the list account* of these three. All were remaining steadfast in their adherence to the truth, but Abraham had gone to Constantinople, and had not returned.

f See Appr-ndix. No. VII.


In speaking of the Holy Land as a Missionary field, Mr. Pieritz gave us the smallest estimate we had yet heard of the numbers of the Jews. He reckoned that in Jerusalem there are only 3000 Jews, in Saphet 2000, in Tiberias 1000, in Hebron 700, and in other towns and villages 1300, making in the whole land only 8000 Jews. During the last year he thought there had been a decrease in the Jewish population; for the plague carried away more than those born during the year, and the Jewish emigrants who came to settle at Jerusalem during that time were not more than twenty. As to their means of support, the Ashkenazim depend wholly on the contributions from Europe, except in isolated cases. The Sephardim are not so entirely dependent on this source, as they have a little trade. If the contributions were withheld, they would all be forced to seek support by their own industry, and this would be infinitely better for them. Every intelligent friend of Israel we met agreed in this opinion. There are no Rabbis properly speaking among the Ashkenazim, that is, the Rabbi is supported in no other way than as a member of the congregation; but among the Sephardim there are "Hachamim" (o'csn) or "Wise," for they do not call them Rabbis. These are all who are raised above the lower class, and have reached a certain standard of learning. Above this is the class of the "Hacham Morenu" fwnu osn) or "Teacher." Him they regard with unqualified respect, and submit to him as a kind of Pope. He is well supported by them, and often lives in affluence. The Ashkenazim do not pay any such respect to their Rabbis. The Polish and German Jews are generally better scholars than the native Sephardim; but, on the other hand, the latter have more knowledge of the Bible. On the Barbary coast, it is not uncommon to meet with very unlearned Jews who are well acquainted with their Bible. There is a mixture of the customs of different countries among the Jews of Palestine; but a general inclination prevails to yield to the manners and laws of the Sephardim; as, for example, in the rites of burial. There is much more of Pharisaism among the Sephardim than among foreign Jews, and much less morality. Polygamy is not unfrequent among them, but is not allowed among the Ashkenazim. There are several in Jerusalem at present who have two wives, and some who have even four. Divorce occurs every day. Mr. Pieritz mentioned one case of a Jewess in Jerusalem, not above thirty years old, who was then marin business, or rich and comfortable, they will not attend to the missionary.

The Jews here will take an Old Testament willingly, but often they will read the historical parts only, and not the prophets; for it flatters their national pride to read the story of the wars of their fathers. To remedy this, the London Society have published The Prophets separately, and these are often sold to them.

The Karaites,f or Jews who keep by the text of the word of God and reject traditions, abound most in the Crimea, and hence some erroneously give that country the honour of originating the name. They are generally very ignorant, having no literature of their own. In the Crimea and Turkey, they are said to repeat their prayers in Turkish. Their prayer-book is a beautiful compilation, being taken almost entirely from Scripture, with some hymns: and they do not omit any book of the Bible in the Scriptures, as some have asserted. The other Jews hate this sect more than they do the Gentiles.

In regard to the Literary Qualifications Op MissionaRies, the remarks of Mr. Pieritz have been mostly anticipated 4 He shewed the necessity of a Missionary's knowing more languages than Hebrew. If he speak to them only in Hebrew, he must quote the Scripture simply as it stands in the Hebrew text, which they often understand in a different sense from what he does. For the sake of perspicuity, therefore, he must explain him

* Matt. xix. 3.

+ o'xi|i that is, textunlists, adhering to the simple Scripture, Kv and rejecting traditions. t Sec pages 193,194.



self in the vernacular tongue—Judeo-Polish or German for the Ashkenazim, and Judeo-Spanish or Arabic for the Sephardim. The study of the Talmud sharpens the intellect much; so that a Missionary who has not studied it deeply ought to have passed through an academica. education. The only way of learning it is by the help of some learned Jew. The parts that are not controversial are the most easy. But one who is a Talmudist and nothing more will never do for a Missionary. One ad vantage of Talmudical knowledge is, that it enables the person to argue by Talmudical logic, which is much shorter and more striking than scientific logic. Jews cannot follow a long argument. They do not Feel the power of the syllogism; and, on this account, * Leslie's Method" does not suit them.

The concluding words of our conversation with this interesting person were worthy of remembrance. "Rather send one good Missionary than fifty others. 1 have come after many Missionaries, and have wished that they had never been there. It was pleasant to come after Wolff. All the Jews in the place knew what he wanted with them—viz. that without Christ there is no remission of sin."

(July 5.) In the streets of Beyrout, it is common to meet Druse women wearing the tantour or " horn " of silver, with the white veil thrown over it. It is far from being a graceful ornament, and is adopted only by the women of Lebanon. It is likely that this fashion was borrowed originally from the language of Scripture, and not that Scripture refers to a fashion which existed long before. Probably the truth in regard to this custom, is the same as in regard to several practices in use among the Abyssinians; they have grafted customs on a literal application of Scripture expres

Our valuable fellow-traveller, Dr. Black, had for some time felt the climate of Syria, and the rude manner of travelling, too much for his bodily strength, and feared that he would not be able to undergo the further fatigue of a journey into Galilee. In these circumstances, it was considered right that he and Dr. Keith should proceed homewards by Constantinople and the Danube, making inquiries into the condition of the Jews in all the most important places through which that route would take them; whilst the two younger members of the Deputation should remain to visit the Jews of Galilee, and return to England by a land journey through Europe. To aid us in our inquiries, Mr. Caiman, a Christian Israelite, of whom we have already spoken, a man of tried integrity, who had formerly laboured five years in Palestine, and was master of the Arabic and German languages, was engaged to accompany us.

On Saturday afternoon (July 6), we were present at the Arabic service in the house of Mr. Hebard, the American Missionary. About twenty Syrian converts were present, and among the rest a venerable old man, named Karabet, who had been twenty years Armenian Bishop in Jerusalem, but had now renounced the errors of that

* Job xvi. 15. t Ira. xxii. 22.

ed fellow-travellers, and saw them set sail in the Austrian steamer for Smyrna. It was solemn and painful to separate from our brethren, "not knowing the things that were to befell us."

We now went to the mission-house above the town; and round the door found several of the Syrian boys waiting for the commencement of the Arabic service. Sitting down under the shade of the mulberry-trees, we conversed with them. Two of them spoke English remarkably well, and went over the Old Testament history most accurately, as far as the wanderings of Israel, accompanying every answer with most expressive looks and actions. One of them especially was full of liveliness, and on asking him the story of Moses wishing to see Lebanon, related it fully, pointing to the lofty mountain towering before us. Three others sitting by occasionally added a remark, while old Bishop Karabet, and many others, looked on from the steps above. Soon after, the Arabic service commenced in a large airy room, divided by a partition, except at the place where the Missionary stood. The women sat on the one side of the partition, the men on the other, according to the custom of the Christian churches of this country, the preacher standing within sight of both parts of the congregation. Mr. Thomson preached in deeplytoned Arabic, to an attentive audience of about one hundred and thirty, gathered out of many different countries. There were two Armenian bishops, with clean venerable beards, Karabet, and Jacob Aga; there were Lord's Supper. 25.

Greeks and Greek-Catholics, an Abyssinian Christian, and a Druse, converted Jews, American Presbyterians and Congregationalists, and Ministers of the Church of Scotland—all different in name, and yet, we trust, one in Christ . This service.closed, and we removed to a more convenient upper chamber, to partake of the Lord's Supper. The American manner of administering this sacra* orient differs little from ours, except that they give thanks a second time before giving the cup, in close imitation of our Lord. One of us sat between two believing Jews, the other between the two Armenian Bishops. Many of the others also participated, so that it was an emblem of the meeting of the great multitude gathered from nations and kindreds at our Father's table above. This was a well of living water at which we were strengthened for our coming journey, and refreshed after the departure of our elder brethren. When they were gone, we felt as if we were beginning our journey anew in circumstances of more responsibility than before. But we hoped for Asher's blessing, "As thy days so shall thy strength be."

Note to page 212. • It is a somewhat curious occurrence, that the remnants of this Bible were found and drawn up from the bottom of the well, in July 18*3, by Dr. Wilson and his fellow traveller, who employed a Samaritan from Sychar to descend and examine the well . (See Memoir of MCheyne, published by the Presbyterian Board of Publication.)

way beyond the gates, then took farewell, burst into tears, and rushed out of sight. We felt it very sad to leave this Arab for ever, not knowing how it is with his soul.

Our road lay nearly south through a grove of pines, with mulberry gardens on all sides. Pleasant wild flowers adorned our path; the oleander in full bloom skirted the banks of two small streams which we crossed; and often also our own modest white rose appeared amongst the fragrant myrtles in the hedges. We crossed a bar of sand which is here blown across the promontory of Heyrout, and is two hours in breadth. The muleteers said that this sand was blown all the way from Egypt, but we heard that the shore is composed of a very soft sandstone which accounts for its origin. Between us and Lebanon lay a splendid olive-grove, stretching north and south, said to be the largest in Palestine, which it was refreshing to the eye even to look upon. But Lebanon itself chiefly attracted our admiration, for every part of its lower ridge seemed covered with villages. From a single point we counted twenty-one villages, all appearing at once on the brow of the mountain, each village having considerable cultivation round it. In the days when these stupendous heights were crowned with forests of pine and cedar, how deeply expressive must have been the words of the prophet, "Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt-offering."*

We reached the southern side of the promontory before sunset, and came upon the rocky sea-shore, along

•Isa. xl. 16.

the spot where Jonah was cast ashore by the whale. The keeper of the khan offered us accommodation, but, after taking a little of his salt bread and leban, we judged it preferable to encamp on the open shore near the sea.

The servants who now formed our party were all of different persuasions. Botros, Mr. Caiman's attendant was a Greek Catholic; Antonio, who waited upon us, was a young Syrian of the Latin Church, and spoke Italian. The muleteers were, Mansor, a Druse, and Tanoos, a Maronite lad, of a most gentle disposition. Sometimes at night Antonio and Botros "poured water on our hands " to wash away the dust, reminding us of 2 Kings iii. 11. With these around us, and the waves of the Mediterranean almost at our tent-door, we slept In peace.

Early next morning an old decrepit Moslem, with head white as snow, calling himself the Dervish of NabyYounes, came to the tent-door asking alms. He was very grateful for a very small coin. We left this bay at six o'clock, and gaining the height of the next rocky promontory, obtained a view of the coast, indented with deep sandy bays, and of Sidon itself two hours distant . The view of Sidon as we approached was very fine, and exceedingly like the representations commonly given of it in the sketches of Syria. The town stands upon a high rising ground, which projects a considerable way

• Gen. xlii. 27

bay to the north ot it nows a considerable stream, another of the many which are fed by the snows of Lebanon. After fording it, a lively scene met our view. The country people were bringing their cusas and melons to market upon donkeys. One woman wore handsome silver anklets, similar to those spoken of by Isaiah.* The Moslem ladies all in white, the face entirely muffled in a dark coloured veil, the feet enclosed in large yellow boots, were taking their morning walk toward the tombs. .. Many remains of ancient pavement occasionally occurred. Mr. M'Cheyne rode on before the rest, and arriving at the gate, inquired of the sentinel the way to the Jewish synagogue. He pointed to a Jew who was standing beside his shop-door at the entrance of the bazaar. The Jew, shutting up his shop, took the stranger kindly by the hand, and led him away to his house. He tied up the horse in the court-yard, took off the carpet and bridle, and ushered him into his best room, where both sat down on the divan. After some preliminary questions, the Hebrew Bible was produced, and the first Dart of Ezekiel xxxvii. read, from which Mr. M. shewed >iim his state by nature. He seemed a little offended, yet not wishing to shew it in his own house, tried to change and one of them started from his seat. We told the Rabbi that we had come from a far country to visit Israel; that we had seen God's word fulfilled in the desolations of Jerusalem; and we asked for what cause Israel were now like the dry bones in the open valley? The old Rabbi appeared to be a man of perverse spirit. He went to his house, and brought out a Hebrew New Testament, one of those printed by the London Society, a good deai worn. He turned up to Mark xiii. 32, where Jesus says that he did not know the day of his second coming, and asked how then could he be God? One bitter Jew made signs to have us thrust out of the synagogue; but the rest showed greater kindness, especially one young Rabbi from the coast of Barbary, who spoke a little French. He showed us their manuscripts of the law, one of which he said was three hundred years old, written at Bagdad, and now much worn. It had cost them 200 dollars. This man afterwards received us politely into his house, entertained us with lemonade and coffee, and at parting accepted a Hebrew tract called "The City of Refuge." He told us that there are 300 Jews in Sidon.


lea. iii. 1a

We now proceeded through the bazaar to a handsome khan or caravansera possessed in former days by the Franks. It is a large square, built round on all sides, with a fine fountain and pool of water in the centre, over which a vine was trained; a few orange-trees grew around. While sitting by the pool waiting till one of our mules was shod, a string of camels urrived, heavily laden with


furniture, which proved to be the property of the late Lady Hester Stanhope, which, we were told, was to be sold at Sidon. Here also two Druse women were sitting wearing the tantour, or horn upon the forehead. On the finger they wore a massy ring, having a seal on it . This we had noticed frequently in Egypt.* In the streets we met several Greek ecclesiastics neatly attired. The town is solidly built, and the bazaars are in a thriving condition. A public bath is one of the few modern buildings; but frequently we stumbled upon broken pillars and fragments of carved stones, the memorials of departed greatness.

All the magnificence of Sidon is gone, for "God has executed judgments in her." f Again and again have its inhabitants been "judged in the midst of her by the sword on every side." There are no more any merchants worth mentioning here. In two or three shops, fishing-rods were exposed for sale, but there are no signs of trade. "Be thou ashamed, O Zidon; for the sea hath spoken, even the strength of the sea, saying, I travail not nor bring forth children, neither do I nourish up young men, nor bring up virgins." \ The city, and the sea that laved its walls, now lament the want of its once crowded and stirring population. It no more can boast of a king. "All the kings of Zidon" have been made to drink the wine-cup of God's fury, even as it was foretold.}

Before leaving the town, a Greek Christian, who acts as a consular agent, came to us, and advised us not to proceed, for a traveller had been killed by the Arabs the day before, three hours on the way to Tyre. We had no reason to suspect this person's veracity, and yet we hoped that his information might be untrue; and committing ourselves to God, left the gate of Sidon an hour after noon.

The gardens and groves that shelter the east side of the town, afforded a pleasant shade. Among some of these Abdolonimus may have been found by Alexander the Great ;|| and there the rich merchants of Sidon enjoyed their wealth, and revelled in that luxury and ungodliness which made the Saviour fix on them as eminent instances of guilt, "It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment than for you." 11 Our way 'ay directly south, through the fine plain which stretches

* Gen. xli. 42. Luke xv. 22. t Ezck. xxviii. 22.

1 Ha. xxiii. 4. $ Jer. xxv. 22.

II Justin, lib. x. cap. 10; and Quia Curtius, lib. iv. cap. 1,4 19
'Matt. xi. 22

snore, but now is on the heights. The hills are here about a mile from the shore, and the village is pleasantly situated upon the steep brow of one of them, overhanging a ravine filled with fine olive-trees, and commanding a wide view. The vine once grew upon its hills in great luxuriance, and is celebrated Dy a Latin poet, "Quspque Sareptano palmite missa bibas:" * (" Wines which the vineyards of Sarepta yield.") But it was matter of far greater interest to us, that it was hither that Elijah came from the brook Cherith, and here he was nourished out of the widow's barrel of meal and cruise of oil, and here he raised her child from the dead by prayer. These simple facts invest the place with a sacred interest. It was the theatre where God displayed his amazing sovereignty. The Lord passes by the many widows that were in Israel—he passes by all the princes of Tyre and Sidon, and fixes on one who dwells unknown in Sarepta, "a woman that was a widow;" teaching the world that he chooses his vessels of mercy where and when it seems good in his sight. Elijah may often have walked along these shores, and it was pleasant even to imagine that we were treading in his footsteps. There is reason to believe that this fertile plain, which may well be called " the borders of Tyre and Sidon,'' was also the scene of one of the most affect

• Sidon. A poll. 17, 5L

mieh, believed to be the ancient Leontea, which has its source from Baalbec, flows through the splendid Vale of Crele-Syria, and empties itself into the sea, an hour and a half north of Tyre.

We crossed the stream by a substantial bridge, upon the side of which we found sitting a cluster of Bedouins, wild, suspicious-looking men, with a little yellow shawl over the head, encircled by a rope of camel's hair. They seemed to be looking out for a prey, and our servants evidently did not like their appearance, but we saluted them peaceably and passed on. On the high bank overlooking the river stands an old dilapidated khan; and here, as the sun was going down, we resolved to encamp for the night. Perhaps the story we had heard at Sidon of the danger of the way made us think more of " perils of robbers," than we should otherwise have done; nor was it any addition to our prospects of a peaceful night's rest, to be told that the ground here was full of scorpions, and that even the floor of the old khan was not free from them. However, we decided to go up to the khan, and seek shelter within its walls. Here, as the brief twilight came on, there arrived first one company and then another of mules, with tingling bells, till the square of the building presented quite a lively appearance. We pitched our tent on the roof of the old ruin, where the grass had been allowed to grow; and committing ourselves to Him that keeps Israel, lay down to sleep in

• Matt. xv. 21—2a Msrk vii. 24—30

verse its streets without meeting at every turn fragments of other days. Thus, at the gate there are two fallen pillars; in the bazaar, another prostrate pillar helps to complete the pavement; and on the shore of the peninsula (once The Island), broken columns lie on all sides, over which the sea dashes its waves. We stood awhile amidst the ruins of the old Christian church, at the southeast corner of the town, where Eusebius is said to have preached, and looking over, observed the waves break on two large columns with their capitals that lay close under the wall.

From this point, and from the summit of a tower to which the Jews led us to the south-west corner of the town, we surveyed the whole extent of what was Insular Tyre, once densely covered with the palaces of Tyrian merchants.* The island appears to have been of the shape of a prolonged diamond, stretching nearly a mile from north to south. The breadth it is not easy to estimate, as we cannot tell where Alexander's causeway commenced. We observed a chain of low rocks in the offing, all a little under water, which may very possibly

• A recent traveller, Mr. W. R. Wylde, found in some of the rocks hole* exactly fit for pots, in some of which were pieces of shells, with the debris of other shells lying round. These shells all belonged to the species Murcx trunadut, from which the purple dye used to be extracted. Hence he concludes, that these holes were anciently the vats used for preparing the Tyrian dye. We found specimens of the shells he speaks of on the shore under Mount Carmcl.


have been built upon in former days. The modern town or village is thinly scattered over the eastern part of what was formerly the island; the part next the sea is cultivated, and bears good tobacco. The little harbour of Tyre lies on the north side of the peninsula, and is nearly enclosed by a wall, the ruins of which are standing here and there. It would not now vie with the harbours of any of our fishing villages; we counted some ten opendecked fishing-boats riding in it; but larger vessels cannot enter. The island was originally nearly half a mile distant from the shore; but across the intervening gulf Alexander with amazing labour formed his famous causeway, using for that purpose the stones and the very dust of ancient Tyre, scraped from off her. During the lapse of ages, the sea has washed up the sand on each side of this causeway, so that it is now a broad neck of land, with fine sandy bays on each side. Ruins of ancient walls and foundations are still to be found in different parts of it. The houses, or rather cottages of Tyre, are built of good stone, with many palm-trees, vines, figs, and pomegranates interspersed, giving the place a cool and pleasing aspect. The modern name is Sour, and there are about 1500 inhabitants. There is some probability that the sea has advanced upon this coast, and materially affected the size of the ancient island; and if this be the case, we can have no difficulty in understanding how the almost impregnable fortifications, of which history speaks, and the palaces of the Tyrian merchants, were once crowded together upon this interesting spot.*

In order to understand fully the accomplishment of the divine predictions against Tyre, it must be borne in mind, that though the island may have been very soon occupied as a stronghold, yet the most ancient city, called by historians Pate Tyrus, or Old Tyre, was situated on the mainland, at a distance of nearly four miles south from the island. This was "the strong city Tyre" mentioned in the days of Joshua, f and the "stronghold of Tyre" in the time of David.J As many travellers have

* Mr. Wylde gives many interesting proofs of the advance of the sea all along the coast . For example, the old castle at Beyrout, which n now surrounded with water, was once joined to the land. The shallowness of the harbours at Jaffa and Acre seem to show the same thing. He also saw ruins under the water at Tyre. If we are to trust Benjamin of Tudela, he says that, in his day, if one went out in a ship a little .vay, he might see ruins of streets and towers at the bottom of the aea, t Josh, xix . 29. t 2 Sam. xxiv. 7.

when "all the ships of the sea with their mariners were in her to occupy her merchandise," this vast bay may have afforded her an anchorage, where the forests of masts would present to the eye a spectacle not less noble than any which can be seen in the harbour of the very greatest of our commercial cities, and this in a region of surpassing beauty.

Indeed, it is not unlikely that Old Tyre may have extended as far as the precipitous summit of Cape Blanco, from which its name Tsour, that is, " a rock," may have been derived. Tyre on the Island may have been at first, as Jowett has conjectured, the harbour of the original city, connected with it, as the remaining aqueducts testify, although four miles distant from its gates. If there be truth in this conjecture, it would at once explain the vast circumference of the city as described by Pliny, and would illustrate the glowing description of Ezekiel, when he describes how "her builders had perfected her beauty."

Keeping both the Tyres in view, we could not fail to notice with what awful accuracy the word of God has been verified concerning them. The word of Amos has been fulfilled, "For three transgressions of Tyrus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof But I will send a fire on the wall of Tyrus which shall destroy the palaces thereof"f Not a vestige of her

* Ezek. xxvi. 21. t Amos. i. 9,13.


palaces remains, except the prostrate granite pillars, over which the wave is ever beating. We remembered, too, as we looked along the bare shore, the minute predictior of Ezekiel, "They shall destroy the walls of Tyrus, and break down her towers: 1 will also scrape her dust from her, and make her like the top of a rock. It shall be a place for the spreading of nets in the midst of the sea; for I have spoken it, saith the Lord God." * Alexander the Great seems actually to have scraped away the very rubbish as well as the stones of Old Tyre to construct his causeway ;f and now the bare rocks along the shore, on some part of which the ancient city must have stood, are literally a place for the spreading of nets. The first man we met in the gate of Tyre was a fisherman carrying a load of fish, and the fishing-boats in the harbour we have already mentioned. If, indeed, the sea has made an advance upon the coast, then the very rocks where Old Tyre stood may be now under water, and the nets of the fisherman may thus also be literally spread over them. And this, also, would give new meaning to the expression, "Thou shalt be broken by the seas in the depths of the waters ;"J although at the same time the ruin of her fleets and merchant-ships will completely satisfy the terms of this prophecy. How interesting, too, is the very uncertainty that hangs over the true situation of ancient Tyre, some placing it on the shore, some at Ras el-Ain farther inward, and some on a rocky eminence called Marshuk, to the north-east—all combining to shew how awfully the thrice-repeated curse has been fulfilled, "/ will make thee a terror and thou shalt be no moreFl and how true to the letter, " Though thou be sought for, yet shalt thou never be found again,"

Looking to the bare rock of the island, or to the village that stands upon it, without a remnant of the triple wall and fortress once deemed impregnable, a traveller is ready to ask, in the very words or the prophet, "Is this your joyous city, whose antiquity is of ancient days?" "Who hath taken this counsel against Tyre, the crowning city, whose merchants are princes, whose traffickers are the honourable of the earth? The Lord of hosts hath purposed it, to stain the pride of all glory, and

* Kick- xxvi. i. Dr. Newcomc's note on this passage gives us the fall sense: "The bare tl,ining surface of a rock."

t The words of Quintus Curtius, quoted by Dr. Keith, are very remarkable: "Humus aggerebatur." t Ezck. xrvii. 31

§ Ezck. xxvi. 21; xxvii. 36; xxviii. 19

Jews in Tyre; of these, five families had come recently from Algiers, and the rest from Saphet, on occasion of their dwellings being destroyed by the earthquake on 1st January, 1837. He led us to the synagogue, one of the poorest and most wretched we had yet seen, having a solitary lamp burning beside the ark. Several Jews gathered round us. The Hebrew Bible was produced, and we soon entered into conversation on divine things. One interesting young Jew seemed a little impressed, and often carried his difficulties to the elder ones, seeking from them an answer. Under a verandah, outside the synagogue, an elderly Jew sat on the ground teaching some children. Mr. Bonar tried the children with a few simple sentences in Hebrew, and they in turn asked him in Hebrew the names of several Scripture characters, putting such questions as ne>D a« >d, "who was the father of Moses?"

We next visited the Rabbi of Tyre at his own house. He seemed a sagacious-looking man, kind and polite in his manners. In discussing passages of Scripture, when Mr. Caiman pushed him hard, he invariably resorted to his commentators, taking down from a shelf some old thin folios. As we sat looking out at the open window

• lea. xxiii. 7, 8,9,11. t Isa. xxiii. 18.

cited curiosity throughout the Jewish community, and many whom we had not seen before came to visit us. With our back to a pillar of the khan, and the Hebrew Bible in our hand, we maintained a broken conversation, often with half a dozen at a time, some going away, others coming. One, as he departed, cried, " Come away from that Epicurus." Some were a little angry, but most were kind and good-natured. We showed that Isaiah i. 7, had been fulfilled before their eyes, "Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire, your land strangers devour it in your presence;" and, therefore, v. 3 must be true of themselves, "Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider." We proved to them from Zech. xiii. 1, that, as a nation, they did not at present know the way of forgiveness; for God says, "In that day, there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for uncleanness." Several of them remained with us to the very last, conducted us through the narrow bazaar, and parted with us outside the gate, with expressions of kindness. i

As we moved slowly round the fine sandy bay on the southern side of the peninsula, we remembered the solemn scene which that very shore had witnessed, when the Apostle Paul visited Tyre on his way to Jerusalem, as recorded by Luke. The Tyrian disciples "All brought us on our way, with wives and children, till we were out of the city; and we kneeled down on the shore and prayed."*

* Acts xxl 5.

newn stones, xne upper stone was very large, ana it was not easy to see how it had been lifted on to its fellows. Where are they that raised it? Their name and object are alike unknown.*

Reaching the summit of the ridge, our road lay southeast, as it penetrated into the interior of the country. In crossing the hills, we noticed in them another capability of this wonderful land, distinct from any we had seen in the southern parts. The sides, and even the summits, were sprinkled over with vigorous olive-trees. Some of these hills were no doubt 1000 feet high, yet their tops were frequently crowned with groves of olives, showing how fertile and how suitable for the cultivation of the olive this range must have been in former days. This was the more remarkable, because we were now in the tribe of Asher; and the prophetic blessing pronounced upon Asher, was, "Let him dip his foot m oiL" \ His lulls appear to be suitable neither for the vine nor for pasture, but for the olive, whose berries yield the finest oiL To this also, as well as to Asher's luxuriant plains in the south of his possession, the words of Jacob may refer, " out of Asher his bread shall be fat." X Nor is it unlikely that the promise, " Thy shoes shall be iron and brass"} may have a reference to these hills, that were his defence against his hostile neighbours in Tyre and Sidon. In days of quietness and peace, his hills yield him

* Robinson mentions this monument, and says that it bears among the common people the name of Kabr Hairan, " Sepulchre of Hiram. "It is possible (he adds) that this sepulchre once held the dust of the friend and ally of Solomon." Vol. iit. 385.

t Dcut. 24. t Gen. xlix. 20. $ Deut . xxxiii. 25.

Leaving Kana, we proceeded up a steep ascent, on the summit of which was another village called Sedeekin, that is, "The faithful," so called by the Moslems because none but Mahometans dwell there. It is beautifully situated in the midst of fields of tobacco and fig-trees in abundance. It may be the site of some one of the towns named along with Kanah, "Hebron, and Rehob, and Hammon." "The inhabitants were all in the field reaping their harvest . The climate on the high hills of Galilee we found to be delicious. The hills around, as far as we could see, were covered with a carpet of green, not of grass, however, but of brushwood and dwarf-trees. Crossing over a low hill, and descending a very steep declivity, we came to the entrance of a deeply shady glen, called Wady Deeb, that is, "Valley of the Wolf," no doubt from its being a favourite resort of that animal. Here we met a Moslem returning from cutting wood, with his axe in his hand, while his wife followed carrying the bundle of wood upon her head, an example of the degradation to which women are subjected in eastern countries. The steep hills on each side of the pass rose to the height of 800 feet, and were finely clothed with tall shrubs and trees. The road winds through by a footpath, which in winter is probably the bed of a torrent. Nothing could exceed the romantic beauty of this ravine.

* Josh. xix. 2a

earthquake in 1837. There is a large pond of water beside the village, and to this herds ofleopards and wolves come to drink at night. Wolves and wild boars abound in the valley we had passed through; and gazelles are numerous. The villagers told us, that near this place are the ruins of several old towns, some of them extensive. They mentioned the names of three, Mirapheh, Mar-Yamin, and Medinatnahash (" city of brass.") The name Jettar, and the striking features of the valley Wady Deeb, up which we had passed, suggested to us that this may be the valley of "Jcphthah-el" mentioned in Joshua.* It is above five hours distant from Tyre.

(July 11.) We were awoke early in the morning by the sound of horses' feet, and starting up saw a soldier, armed with gun and pistols, looking in upon us. Along with him were two Jews from Tyre, whom we immediately recognised as friends. One told us in his broken French, that a messenger had brought word to Tyre of a Jew having been shot by the Bedouins two hours further on the road to Saphet, and they were now going to find his body. Whether this was a true report or not we

* Josh. xix. 27.


never ascertained, but it made us feel that our way through Galilee was not unattended with danger. The villagers, too, seemed alarmed; they were going to a market at some distance, somewhere in the direction of Saphet, and were very anxious that we should accompany them, either out of kindness to us or through desire of protection to themselves. We thought it better, however, to journey forward by ourselves, as we could not have reached Saphet by the proposed bypath the same night. Their advice reminded us of the days of Shamgar, "when travellers walked through byways." * We read Isaiah xxvi. in our morning worship under a tree, at a little distance from the village, and rode on our way through the tribe of Naphtali.

On a hill near were the ruins of a small fortress, and caves that may have been used as sepulchres. The Arabs called the place Bedundah. In a little while a deep valley came in sight lying beneath us, with a fine pass winding to the east, the hills beyond appearing wooded to the top. The mouth of the pass was shut up by a conical hill, completely wooded. In winding round this hill, we came upon a well and a watering trough, where several shepherds had gathered their flocks together to drink. The quietness of the valley contrasted with the rumours of danger from the Bedouins, reminded us of Judges, "They that are delivered from the noise of archers in the places of drawing water."f For some time hill and valley alternately presented themselves, covered with shrubs and trees. At one place, a large snake glided away from us among the shrubs, and once or twice an owl was seen perching on the trees.J Coveys of partridges also frequently crossed our path. On the height above was a village called Jibbah. The way was adorned with many wild flowers, and we were occasionally refreshed by romantic scenery. The jasmine is called by the Arabs "Jasmin-el-barie," that is, wild jasmine, and appears to be a native of the country. Often it was seen creeping to the top of the trees, and there forming a snowy crown, or twining from branch to branch a garland of white flowers. The yellow broom also, a native of Palestine, was flourishing in great profusion. Through another mountain valley we came into a smal .

* Judg. v. 6. t Judg. v. 11.

t Ps. cii. 0, " An owl of the desert places."

..„. ——■/ Hocks ot sheep and goats were on their way to drink at the pool.

Leaving this beautiful plain, our way led us through mountain passes of a similar character to those already described, only here we observed the remains of ancient terraces, and remarked that the natural rock is frequently in the form of terraces, as in the hills of Judah. About mid-day we came in sight of a village on the summit of a rocky hill; to which we gladly turned aside to enjoy a little rest. Throughout all the morning we had expected to fall in either with the Bedouins, or our Jewish friends; and many a lurking-place suitable to the designs of the robber we passed, but no evil came near us. The name of the village to which we had come was Kefr-birhom; its inhabitants, about 200 in number, are all Maronite Christians. They received us very kindly, and introduced us to their priest, a gentle and venerablelooking man. His dress was a dark caftan or cloak, and a high black turban. He pressed us much to take up our lodging in an upper room which he pointed out to us; but we preferred the deep shade of a spreading figtree. He sat down with us, and many of the villagers at a respectful distance; and, through Mr. Caiman, we had some discussion on points of doctrine. One of us, wandering through the village, entered into the cottage the synagogue. He soon came and spoke with us, and taking up the Hebrew Bible, he put his finger on Joshua ii. 1, where Joshua is described as sending out two spies to view the land, "Now (said he) you are these spies." We found in the village traces of former greatness, especially in the north-east, where are considerable remains. The principal ruin is that of an ancient syna

gogue. The doorway and two windows (one on each side of the door) was still in good preservation, but half sunk in the rubbish. The upper part of the door is


ornamented with a fine wreath of vine leaves and bunches of grapes carved in the stone, and in beautiful preservation. The windows are also adorned with carved work; three columns arc still standing, and several fragments lie scattered through the village. The Maronites and Jews both called it a Jewish synagogue, and connected it with the name of Isaiah.* We were told also that the Jews sometimes go there to pray. In a field about a quarter of a mile distant stands another doorway, said to be not so elegant, but bearing an inscription over it. We regretted much that our time did not permit us to visit it and endeavour to decypher the inscription.

In the afternoon, we set out again, having the Jews in our train, and conversing with them by the way. A fine spreading mountain now came in sight, two hours distant on the right hand, commonly supposed to be Mount Saphiali, resembling Queensberry Hill in Dumfries-shire. There is a considerable plain around its base, which may be part of the plain of Zaanaim, where Heber the Kenite dwelt, and where Barak gathered his army.f The hill would serve as a mark easily seen far off by " all Zebulun and Naphtali," and so would render this spot the better suited for a rendezvous. The town at which they met was Kadesh, the birthplace of Barak, and also a City of Refuge. If Kadesh stood near this hill, it would be well fitted for a city of refuge, as the hill would point out its situation at a great distance to the fleeing manslayer, while the plain made his flight easy. In this respect it would resemble Sychem and Hebron, which were also cities of Refuge.

On the left hand, we passed, without seeing it, the village of Gish, supposed to be the site of Gischala, which Josephus says was mostly peopled with agriculturists, and near which (he says) was Kydessa, which may be the modern village Kadyta, a little to the south-east . Mr. Caiman had visited Gish immediately after the earthquake by which it was totally destroyed. In one place he mentioned that the rocks were torn asunder to a considerable breadth, and no one could tell the deptn of the fissure. About half a mile farther on we turned off the road to the left to visit a singular pool called B<rket-el Gish. It bears evident marks of having been at one time the crater of a volcano. It is of an oval form, and about 1100 paces in circumference. This we ascertained by

* Comp, p. 280. t Judg. iv. 10, 11.

to be the "city set on a hill," to which our Lord referred, and perhaps pointed, in his Sermon on the Mount; and certainly no place in all Palestine could better answer the description. We were not able to ascertain even from the Jews the name of any Scripture town situated there.* Before coming to Saphet, we passed a village called Saccas, on a high rugged hill. Descending this hill, Mr. Bonar's mule entangled its foot in a fissure of the rock, and rolled upon its side. Its rider was precipitated to the ground, without suffering any injury; but the poor animal's foot was sorely crushed, and the muleteer led it along, pouring out incessant lamentations, and often kissing it like a child.

After crossing several ravines, all running south toward the Sea of Galilee, we climbed the hill on which Saphet stands by a very steep path worn deep in the white limestone rock. Mr. M'Cheyne rode up by the path, on the east side of the hill, and came upon ruins made by the earthquake, which on that side are very appalling. Arriving at the house of a Jew, he was kindly entertained, and requested by his host to tell the news of the war. Another Jew kindly guided him to the rest of our company. Mr. Caiman, being well acquainted with the place and with the Jewish inhabitants, soon obtained for us a comfortable lodging in the cottage of a German Jew, who willingly removed to make way for us. He

• The name Saphet may be derived from no* the capital of a pillar tl Kings vii. 41), alluding to the appearance of the town which surmounts the hill, very much in the way that a capital surmounts a pillar.