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and the interesting articles lately publish- | Who would be carried by steam into the ed in the Philhellenic Review, in Lon- presence of that altar-rock to which lovers don, have done much to remove from the of the beautiful in all ages have looked English-speaking public this false impres- for inspiration? Who would lose the desion. Greece is assuming every month a light of the first long look as the Acropomore prominent place in the consideration lis rises into sight above the roofs of Piof those who are troubled by the Eastern ræus, or make shorter the keen pleasure Question. And this awakened interest in of each new identification of hill and Greece will lend interest, it is hoped, to an plain and stream and ruins before you article which, omitting all attempts at de- with the strangely familiar yet unreal tailed description of her wonderful ruins, image you have formed from maps and and her museums so rich in statuary of books ? the best period of art, untouched by the We drove slowly up the carriage road, restorer's chisel, shall simply record some which follows the line of the northern of the impressions of a recent stay of two long wall. The railroad (the only pasmonths at Athens.
senger line in Greece) follows the line of The traveller approaching Athens from the south or “middle long wall,” thirty the east changes steamers at Syra, in the rods to the right. In classic times, throngheart of the Cyclades, and after a night ing crowds of laborers, merchants, and voyage finds himself coasting Ægina at travellers filled the space between the dawn, and at sunrise anchored in the Pi- rows of closely crowded dwellings which ræus, the port of Athens. The harbor on either side lined these old walls. Now presents a busy, thriving aspect. At the there are not half a dozen houses between close of the revolution in 1830, there were Athens and Piræus. The old substrucbut half a dozen fishermen's huts where tions of the long walls of solid masonry now stands a rapidly growing town of twelve feet thick are still to be seen in twenty or thirty thousand inhabitants. many places, and have been used as the
The idea of entering Athens by rail- bed of the carriage road and the railway. road is repellent to any lover of her past. Half way to Athens we halt at a little
derful rock draw your eyes irresistibly to themselves; but the Greek Church and the Middle Ages claim your attention as the street divides, passing on either side the little Byzantine church which fills the roadway. Then through a street like the modern parts of Paris, the sharp gray cone of Lycabettus towering before you on the left, close over the city, you drive on toward the park and the royal palace, which close the vista.
Our hotel, the Angleterre, faced the palace, a broad park intervening. It was St. George's Day, and the custom of the Greek Church keeps the birthday festival not on the anniversary of one's birth, but on the saint's day of the patron şaint whose name was given the child when christened. So on St. George's Day were to be observed the ceremoniesappropriate to the birthday festival of "George, King of the Greeks.” The city was astir. The crowd wore, for the most part, the
dress and the quick, nervway -- side cabaret to water the horses. ous aspect of a New York crowd. Here The supply of water which bubbles from and there you saw the Albanian costume, a fountain here is brought in pipes under- adopted by the Greeks as the national ground beneath the bed of the Ilissus dress for lack of any other more dis(always dry in summer now) from the tinctively their own. Blue, close-fitting famous fountain of Callirrhoë, close un-breeches; white or blue stockings and der the substructions of the Temple of gaiters ; low shoes of red leather with Zeus Olympias. The sign of the little pointed, tasselled, upturned toes, and no hostelry was two rival chieftains in an- heels ; a short black jacket, sometimes cient armor, lance and shield in hand, blue, cut away, and richly embroidered, painted life-size in most startling colors. worn over a red waistcoat, and a white, Over one was inscribed in Greek capitals embroidered shirt with open sleeves; colAXIAAEYE (Achilleus).
ored garters at the knee, and a red girdle Driving east up Hermes Street, the supporting an immense leathern pouch, main thoroughfare of the city, we pass from which protrude pistols and a knife the Temple of Theseus, best preserved of or two; on the head a pointed red flannel Grecian temples, at a little distance on cap, like a prolonged Turkish fez, falling our right; and at the corner of Æolus over upon the side, and ending in a silk Street, which crosses Hermes at right an- tassel. The most remarkable feature of gles, we catch a glimpse of the old octag- the costume remains to be described. onal Tower of the Winds to the south, From thirty to sixty yards of white linen close under the northern slope of the about thirty inches wide are gathered in Acropolis. The ruins on that most won a very thickly pleated skirt, which is
starched, and worn over the breeches. place was assigned to the English MinisThis is the fustanella; and where this hab- ter. English is the court language at it is kept scrupulously clean (which is sel- Athens. Indeed, King George's close redom the case with the class of citizens lationship with the Princess of Waleswho most affect it), it is strikingly pictur- she is his sister-has given to his reign esque. The profusion of skirt nece
cessarily something of the character of an English gives to its wearer, in Western eyes, a cer- protectorate. For this reason, the Greeks tain feminine air, which no amount of took all the more to heart the action of bushy beard, no fierceness of demeanor, Lord Beaconsfield-his “nasty trick," no profusely displayed fire-arms, can quite counteract. Yet as the National Corps came marching down the square, thus uniformed, their brawny limbs and determined faces, and the gleaming colors of their dress, gave them an air not unlike that of the Scotch Highlanders. In Megara and Eleusis, as in many other parts of the interior, the inhabitants, especially the women, adhere invariably to their characteristic and high-colored local costumes, many of which are most picturesque in color and in detail.
Several of the women in the crowd before us, and a few of the ladies in the Greek ministers' carriages, wore the national red cap; and several others, who were dressed in Parisian style, had retained the very pretty Thessalian head-dress -a little golden crown or tiara supporting a light veil thrown back from the face.
As the crowd beneath us grew denser, uniformed policemen kept clear a way for the procession. Small, dark-eyed boys, with the preternaturally intelligent look that marks the Athenian boy, sold to the crowd odes and ballads in honor of the day, written in Greek that would have they called it, with a broad pronunciation seemed hardly strange to the eyes of a of the Englishman's opprobrious epithet contemporary of Plato, or to St. Paul -in bidding Greece refrain when she himself, at Athens.
might have wrested from Turkey by force A squad of cavalry first came down the of arms, during the war with Russia, conbroad drive from the palace. Except the cessions of territory which all the world uniformly fine-looking officers, who spend feels should be hers. But Beaconsfield asextravagant sums for horses of showy ac- sured Greece that she “had a future," and tion, they were very poorly mounted; but bade her trust it, and refrain from war. they sat their sorry beasts right well. When peace was restored, in his secret
Fifty carriages followed, every nation and public negotiations he utterly ignored represented at Athens sending its diplo- the claims of Greece. Indignation at this matic servants to congratulate the king, treatment ran high at Athens a year ago. and to attend him on his progress to a The crowd in general was less demonstraspecial birthday service in the metropoli- tive than an American or an English tan cathedral A little cheer greeted the crowd on a like occasion; but the greetappearance of each national representa- ings to the king were said to be less entive, except in case of the Turks, whose thusiastic than they would have been had red fezes were met with a significant si- not the presence of the Duke of Conlence. The Duke of Connaught, then at naught and the English officers with him Athens with his bride, occupied a seat in reminded the Athenians afresh of their the king's own carriage, and a prominent keen disappointment at England's failure
A GREEK BRIGAND.
to maintain their cause against the Turk. Athens numbers not far from 70,000 inDuring my stay at Athens, the appearance habitants. Its principal streets are paved, in the street of the white pith helmet so and lighted by gas. Its architecture, in commonly associated with Englishmen in the better parts of the city, and in the the East called out expressions of a version common buildings designed for business from passers-by, which were very unplea- purposes and dwellings, is not unlike the sant. The name of American, however, modern part of any European town. In insures one who is properly introduced the 1832, when Dr. Hill, the venerable Amerikindest attentions in Athens. American can missionary, who still resides at Athens, aid and sympathy during their revolu- took up his abode there, he was obliged to tion have always been held in grateful live for some months in a ruined tower, remembrance; and the labors at Athens as there was literally not a house standing of American missionaries in churches and in Athens. The city is entirely of modern in schools, and the character of the Amer- growth. It lies almost exclusively to the ican representatives at Athens, have con- north and east of the Acropolis. The old firmed this kindly feeling.
city lay chiefly to the south and west of The success of Greek scholars who have this hill, and in Roman times extended made a home for themselves in America, northward and eastward. too, is keenly enjoyed by their country Stone and brick are the building ma
At a reception at the house of Pro-terials. There is no supply of wood for fessor Philip Joannes, of the university, building purposes. Even roots and fagseveral elderly scholars were present who ots for fuel are fabulously dear. In the had known Professor Sophocles, of Har- poorer quarters of the city, and especially vard, and who remembered with delight close under the Acropolis, there are rows President Felton's stay at Athens; while of stone hovels, many of them but one others among the younger men inquired story high, dark, noisome, and dirty. warmly after Dr. Timayenis, who is now These huts are constantly encroaching doing so much in New York to make upon the vacant land on the slopes of the modern Greek more familiar to the eyes rocky citadel. This land is the property and ears of Americans.
of the government, and no one has a right
to build upon it. But there is at Athens in the open air, and prepare their frugal either a law or a prescriptive right which meal—as you see how pathetically these prevents the removal or destruction of a little houses seem to cling like suppliants home once built and occupied. Taking about the knees of the marble-crowned, advantage of this, a couple newly married world-famous Rock of Athens-it takes litnotify their friends, material is quietly got | tle fancy to imagine that these homes of
together, and on the appointed night, as the poor have crept for protection beneath silently as may be, the simple house is the mighty shadow of the stronghold of erected, between dark and dawn, the hands liberty in Athens's glorious past. of scores of friends making light work; Probably the dwellings of the people, and, with such household goods as they in the days when her grandest temples can boast, the young householders take rose, were little more than shelter from possession at once. Then from the sacred sun and rain-far better represented by home altar they safely answer the ques- these poorer dwellings than by the Paristions of the officers of the law, should any ian streets which make up so large a part notice be taken of their trespass. As you of Athens now. The outer walls of the gaze down upon these simple homes from finer houses are built of undressed stone, the Acropolis in the earliest dawn of a which is plastered over, and often painted. summer morning, and see the inmates, Light yellows and blues and pinks are roused from a night's rest often passed sometimes chosen for this purpose, but beneath the open sky, on the flat roof or white is the prevailing color. The roofs beside the humble door), light a little fire are for the most part flat. Along their