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loved bathing in the limpid chilly waters during the hot days of summer. This river Cydnus, rushing and swirling between green banks and


up, Tarsus was held by the Greek kings of Syria. Of course Rome placed its hands upon it, and Julius Cæsar received its support in the great civil

Its universities vied with those of Athens and Alexandria. But these have gone; and none can point the spot where rest the tombs of the Emperor Julian or Maximinus Daza. Then the Saracens secured it, and the Caliph Haroun el Rashid made it the capital of the province. The Greeks won it again, and there was a seesaw of governments; when one king could not be poisoned, he was assassinated; and sɔ many races of barbarians invaded the place and were supreme, ravaging and pillaging it for centuries, till a time came when there was nothing worth ravaging or pillaging, and a pall of obscurity fell upon the place for nearly a thousand years. It is only within the last two centuries that it has made a feint of holding up its head again.

And yet, although the glory of Tarsus has gone I could not walk along any of its by-ways without being saddened at the ruin. Tarsus of to-day is built on a higher level than the Tarsus of old times, but by digging twenty feet or so a mass of lovely marble carvings is discovered. I saw the most exquisite chiselled work roughly stuck in the sides of rude houses, delicate tracing being worn away through serving as a stepping-stone to a house, and charming pillars carved and fretted lying in heaps, nobody caring for them, nobody to protect them or ship them to lands where they

would be valued, but waiting till some man builds a house and runs short of stone, when they will be useful in filling up some odd corner. In



over and around gigantic boulders, seems to have occasionally varied its course, and at one time to have even run through the town; now it runs round it. The boys of Asia Minor, like the boys of anywhere else, love to dabble in the waters and to sit for hours patiently, and as a rule fruitlessly, on a rock waiting for some hungry fish to nibble at a dangling worm. The usual method of fishing in the Cydnus, however, is not quite so sportsman like. A concocted Auid is poured into the river. This has the effect of stupefying the fish, and as they float to the surface they are quickly landed with nets. Most of the fish is obtained in Karamania after this man

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Few cities have been so much fought for as Tarsus. To understand the whys and the wherefores of all the conflicts would mean the study of the history of Cilicia, if not of Armenia. This, however, is plain, that when the Macedonian empire was cut

backyards, quite unprotected and unheeded, I saw sarcophagi that would be a delight to many a museum. The finest white marble sarcophagus

ever found in Tarsus was shipped on board a man- were taught to read and write Turkish, but of-war, and is now in the Metropolitan Museum of principally to learn long excerpts from the Koran, Art at New York. No doubt there are other which they chanted in a droning monotone, gazing equally beautiful sarcophagi near where this one was round all the time, absolutely heedless of the found, but the Turkish government, too apathetic words they were uttering. to make excavations on its own behalf, will not I think nearly all the scholars at the Armenian allow anybody else to make excavations either. school accompanied me when I visited their church. Many interesting finds are the result of accident, It was a fine, impressive building, standing on but the discoverers are not prone to cry out their the site of a very ancient edifice, from whence good fortune. Some years ago a man while working Theodore of Canterbury went to the west. When in a garden came across three bronze statues and digging the foundations some exquisitely-wrought four of life size in marble upon a mosaic pavement. jewellery was discovered, as well as some gold The governor was informed, and naturally the man coins. There is a twisted old tree, sapless with expected some recompense.

But his only recom- age, close to the church, beneath which, tradipense was imprisonment to compel him to confess tion says, Paul frequently sat. Whether he did if he had discovered other and more portable or not cannot be certain, but the tree looks treasures in the garden.

old enough to have been flourishing when Paul Nearly half the inhabitants of Tarsus are a young man. One might almost expect Armenians, all of them Christians. Excepting

Excepting that many antiquities connected with Paul would


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the Greeks, they are by far the most enlightened section of the population. This is accounted for chiefly because they have always been in close sympathy with the western nations, and have seized all educational opportunities, whilst their neighbours, the Turks, Syrian Arabs, and Persians, have held rigidly aloof from having anything to do with Europeans. I went into an Armenian school, and chatted with some of the masters, and was able to see that the young men were being well grounded in general education, as well as taught several languages. The boys were lively and intelligent, and delighted to air their acquaintance with English. They sat at forms very similar to those in a British board school, and devoted their time, alternately, to history, geography, composition, and so on.

Then I went into a Turkish school. The room was small and not over-clean. The master squatted, tailor-wise, at one side, and in a semicircle sat a group of Moslem youngsters. These

be shown. But there is not even a site about which anybody can speak with a vestige of assur

There is St. Paul's well, supposed to be by the side of a Christian church, erected on the site of the apostle's residence. This well is in a courtyard, reached by passing through an archway protected by a heavy, iron-studded door. An old woman was drawing water with a rope and pitcher, and she offered mo a drink, which, as the day was blistering hot, I was glad to accept. The top of the well is of a white marble block, the inner rim well worn with the letting down and pulling up of ropes during many, many years. As the dame turned the windlass, and filled her buckets, I could not help being impressed with the picturesque place, visited, without fail, by every Christian who comes to this part of the world. Paul Christie-Dr. Christie's son, and a perfect encyclopædia concerning Tarsus—told me that many years ago somebody descended the well and came to a natural cave in the rock, and there WISDOM.

It was



found a slab with a Greek inscription, but so illegible was it, that nothing could be deciphered. Whilst some excavations were being made within a few feet of the well, a baptismal font was discovered, which gives colour to the surmise that a church once stood near the place. The font was placed on a pedestal for visitors to see ; somebody, however, one day, walked off with it, and its whereabouts is unknown, except to the thief. A special punishment ought to be devised for folks who pilfer antiquities intended for the whole world to inspect.

I loved to ramble about the roads leading into Tarsus, poking about, seeking for traces of the old fortifications, against which many a mighty host has thrown its strength. There are two massive gates, of which one, the Demir Kapou (Iron Gate), is evidently Byzantine and dates, probably, from the time of Justinian. Through this there is a constant stream of people, going into and coming out of the town-water-carriers, mules laden with myrtle, broom, and lavender, filling the air with sweet smell, wizen-eyed old Moslems, and bright, happy youngsters. There was an encampment of Kurds-a wild, war-loving, banditting, and marauding race from the hillsby the roadside. The women, with their strong, angular features, were somewhat repellent, but the men, tall, sinewy, well-proportioned, with big, black, daring eyes, excited both one's fear and admiration. I think they rather resented my inquisitiveness when I examined their encampment. They scowled and muttered, but offered no violence, although they rarely hesitate at that. They have no compunction about shooting a man, for the Turkish Government would not punish them, even were they caught red-handed. There is a Roman bridge spanning the Cydnus, but it is like the boots that were repaired till none of the original remained. It does not look very old, but plenty of carved stones, of undoubted antiquity, can still be discerned in the structure. Down by the side of this bridge I wandered, and stood long by the river, while camel-drivers, preparatory to setting out on a long march to the interior, brought their animals down to drink. On another side of the town is a stubborn, strong archway called the Kandji Kapou, with stone channels still left, down which the Tarsusians

could pour boiling lead, while their enemies were trying to ram the gateway. I was attracted to a number of Mohammedans, who were kneeling about an enclosure, evidently a tomb, hung with many lanterns. They were wailing and swaying their bodies because the spot was sacred. It is called Jonah's 'Tomb, but why again nobody can tell, and the Moslems least of all. curious, unusual sight, the warm rays of the sun pouring down on the group of worshippers, and I hesitated for a moment to look on. A mother, I noticed, pulled a child towards her hurriedly, and covered its head with her cloak. This was done because I had glanced at the child. The woman was afraid mine was an evil eye, and harm might come to her offspring if my gaze was too strong.

But though Tarsus seems cut off from the world, with no newspapers and very little conimunication with other towns, it is not quite so. I went to inspect a cotton-mill, and there I was interested to find the machinery had come from England, and, indeed, bore the name of a Lancashire manufacturer. It is the same all through the East. I have been in places where not a word of English is spoken, and when I have bought something from a plundering old Arab, I have been surprised to see him wrap up my purchase in, maybe, a piece of a London halfpenny evening newspaper. But for many months past no newspaper of any kind, unless smuggled through in a letter, has passed the Turkish censors. It will be absolutely impossible for this publication to reach Tarsus by the ordinary channels, because of this very article, mild though it be.

I am writing thousands of miles from Tarsus, but with a refreshing recollection of the time I stayed there—the cramped, crooked streets, the mosques that once had served for Christian churches, the dirty, noisy bazaars, with the dirty noisy natives running to and fro; and then the hill, guarded by the wheezy cannon, with Tarsus, interesting but little-known city, lying on a carpet of green, as it were, at the bottom; and far away, in the misty distance, the long stretch of hills, many a summit capped with snow-all unfolded to my mind's eye, as in a panorama ; and I wonder over its forgotten history, and in the glowing embers of my study fire see how Alexander the Great marched his armies through the Cilician Gates.




CANON OF ST. PAUL'S, AND CHAPLAIN-IN-ORDINARY TO THE QUEEN “If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it

shall be given him."- James i. 5.

HEN we take men as they are by

nature, without either grace or education, it is hardly a question which is the wisest amongst them, so much as which of them is less

foolish than the others. To be more or less foolish is natural to every man ; that

nobody is wise at all hours of his life is an ancient and common proverb.

“ Were I to be angry with men for being fools," wrote Goldsmith with a charming touch of sincerity, “I could find ample room for declamation ; but, alas ! I have been a fool myself; and why should I be angry with them for being something so natural to every child of mistakes we have made! Some of them have been absolutely irretrievable, like a rash and ill-assorted marriage ; others have caused us much pain, trouble and suffering. How many things we should like to have done otherwise from our vantage-ground of accumulated experience! What a number of silly speeches we can remember, which make us even now blush with vexation, and utter impatient words at our own stupidity. We fancy everybody must remember these inanities, and are only comforted by reminding ourselves how few we can recollect about other people, so that they perhaps do not record them against ourselves. But ah! even in a single year, what a multitude of things there is which at its close we wish unthought, unsaid, undone !


humanity ?” “ All men are fools; and he who does not wish to see them must remain in his chamber and break his looking-glass.” “There are more fools than wise men; and even in the wise men more folly than wisdom.” « There is in human nature generally more of the fool than of the wise ; and therefore those faculties by which the foolish part of men's minds are more taken are the most potent." There can be no doubt that there is hardly anybody of whom we know anything in public or in private, whose conduct or words we have not sometimes been led to characterise as lacking in wisdom.

It is therefore very highly probable that we ourselves have to make the same confession as Goldsmith : “ Alas! I have been a fool myself !” But we do not like to admit it.

We prefer naturally to imagine that we are paragons alike of virtue and prudence. “ The imputation of being a fool is a thing which mankind, of all others, is the most impatient of, it being a blot upon the prime and specific perfection of human nature.” So wrote the wittiest of English preachers, and one of the closest observers of human nature, Robert South in the days of Charles II. To have our conduct called rash, ill-considered, inappropriate, unfortunate,

or unsuccessful, we endure; but to be termed foolish we take as an insult ; from a foolish man it sounds as if wisdom could only come by accident; about him there must be something hopelessly and radically wrong. We like to think of that terrible person the fool in the Book of Proverbs, and to congratulate ourselves that at least we are not like him. When recall that blatant, irrepressible, unabashed nuisance, we agree

that he that begetteth a fool doth it to his own sorrow, and that a foolish son is heaviness to his mother. We :see him despising his father's instruction, and finding his way right in his own eyes. We know that he prates, that his mouth is his destruction, that he utters gaily all his mind, while the wise man keeps counsel ; that whereas it is all honour for a man to cease from strife, every fool will be meddling; that while the wise man feareth and departeth from evil, the fool rageth and is confident. We quite feel that he hath no delight in understanding, and despises knowledge ; that one reproof enters more into a wise man than a hundred stripes into a fool ; that he believes every word that suits him, and in spite of every rebuff returns like a dog to his own folly ; that though we should bray him in a mortar yet his folly would not depart from him ; that it is better for a bear robbed of her whelps to meet a man, than a fool in his folly. All this we quite understand; but we think it must be some distinct genus, not often met with in our experience. It would be difficult for us to believe that any of the traits of this distressing, disgusting and insufferable person belong to ourselves.

But oh, my brothers ! the only way to become wise is to be conscious of our own want of wisdom. “ The fool doth think he is wise," wrote Shakespeare, “but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.” When we look back into our past lives, how many wrong steps we have taken! What

From the Christian point of view, thank God! there can be no wholesale, irretrievable, born and hopeless fool like the rampageous and incorrigible booby in the Book of Proverbs. We take him as a type in which all men are more or less liable to share, and to which some may come very near by never aiming at anything higher than their own natural impulses. Natural stupidity there may be, natural weakness of character, natural love of mischief and folly, natural lust of laughter, which in feeble-minded persons must necessarily engender silliness, natural want of perception and discretion. But for the humble Christian, who knows anything of the grace of God, all these defects are curable. The fool is a type and a warning of that from which we can all by Divine help escape.

I cannot of course forget that some persons are of a highly nervous and febrile temperament, difficult to control. And some are by birth stupid in an extreme degree, and always liable to blunder. Some, by some strange defect in their ancestors, seem morally and intellectually blind. But these are unusual examples, and we need not now consider their case. On the one hand they may be subjected to special training and discipline which may modify their inherent tendencies; and on the other for all these congenital deficiencies the Almighty, Who is Perfect Justice, will make the fullest allowance. But those of us who are in the most complete degree responsible for our follies, stupidities and mistakes, as well as for all our other failings, while it is our duty to conquer them it is our privilege to know that they can be subdued.


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Folly comes first from Hastiness. We do not take time to consider. Circumspection means looking all round ; and that is what we have to do. We must not jump at conclusions, or rush into decisions. We must think things out in all their possible eventualities and consequences.

It is an old saying that second thoughts are best. Whenever there is a doubt in our mind, it is far better to do nothing at all. Every sentence that we utter we ought to think about before we deliver it. Nobody is compelled to talk ; and it is often a good thing to consider beforehand whether what we were going to say is worth the speaking Talkativeness is frequently itself a cause of folly.

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