It should not be imagined that the bazars of the East are huge flats crammed with rows of trim counters, overstrewn with toys and trinkets, and all of the gaud and glitter that are the attraction of such lounging- locations in London. There isn’t a prettiness within the nice business mart of the Moslems ; their Tcharchi consists of a cluster of streets, of such extent and quantity as to resemble a small coated city, the roof being supported by arches of stable masonry. A slender gallery, barely fenced by a wood rail, often connects these arches : and it’s extraordinary to look down from one among them upon the changeful and motley crowd under; neither is it, maybe, much less singular to the stranger, when he has gained this giddy elevation, to search out himself surrounded by numbers of doves, whom his neighborhood fails to disturb, and who seem like so habituated to human contact and human turmoil, and to have suffered each so lengthy with impunity, ns to have turn out to be regardless alike of the one and the opposite.
Each avenue of the bazar is appropriated to a specific department of commerce; thus, on the street generally known as the Bezenstcin, the 2 ranges of counters are occupied by jewellers, and are positioned on a raised wood platform, the place the retailers unfold their carpets, and make their calculations on strips of a robust yellowish paper, resembling parchment, that they relaxation towards their knee; whereas, with out withdrawing the chibouque from their lips, they dip their reed pen into an ink-bottle, nestled amid the folds of the scarf about their waist, and thus gravely await their prospects. Past the platform is a strong-room, of which the door is made quick; for a lot of of them comprise a few of the most expensive gems on the planet, significantly pearls, turquoises, and brilliants; though the dingy and ill-supplied glass-cases on the counters would lead a stranger to think about that nothing uncommon or curious was to be met with within the Bezenstein: however let the eager and quick-sighted sellers (who arc virtually solely Armenians) see a prospect of securing a very good buyer, and tlie door of tlic interior condo as soon as thrown again, the attention should be regular certainly that’s not dazzled by the mass of jewels which encompass it. ‘flic are there in abundance; drinking-cups, lipped with gems; tusbees, or rosaries, the place each bead is a jewel; clusters of diamonds in fanciful gadgets, for the turbans of the younger beauties of the harem ; aigrettes for the caps of the nobles; housings for the Arab steeds of the Pashas, stiff with pearls and gold rings, chains, and stars;—it have been idle, briefly, to try a recapitulation of the treasures of the Bezenstein.