The Harem is a Sealed Book

“ The harem is, in fact, a sealed e-book; for, as the women of the Sultan’s family have by no means been allowed to indulge their curiosity by a survey of that portion of the palace appropriated to Mahmoud himself, it might scarcely be anticipated that any intruder ought to be admitted past the jealously-barred door forming their very own boundary.”

The Bathtub of this imperial residence has already been described in an earlier portion of our work; and we’ve got now solely to note the in depth and princely gardens, which rise, terrace above terrace, to the very summit of the mountain which overhangs the palace. Every terrace is underneath the cost of a overseas gardener, and organized in response to the style of his personal land ; however the most interesting portion of the grounds comprises a noble sheet of water, referred to as the Lake of the Swans, whose total floor is often thickly lined with these swish birds, of which the Sultan is so fond, that he generally passes hours in considering them as they glide over the nonetheless water; and, within the phrases of Wordsworth,

“ Swim double—swan and shadow.”

Boats, gaily gilded and painted, are moored underneath the shadows of the magnolias, willows, and different lovely bushes which kind the framework of the lake; and about fifty three’ards from the hank stands a reasonably, fanciful edifice, referred to as the Air Bathtub,—a sublime retreat entrance the oppressive heats of summer season; whose roof, and partitions, and flooring, are alike fashioned of marble, wrought in marine derices; and whose fountains, trickling down the partitions, pour their waters over a succession of ocean-shells, marine divinities, sea-weeds, and coral reefs; and sustain a continuing present of cool air, and murmur of candy sound, completely charming. Inferior flats department off on both facet from this lovely saloon, and altogether it’s as fairly a toy as ever exhausted fancy in its invention.

The group of cypresses

A gilded kiosque glitters amid the group of cypresses and plane-trees by which the final peak is topped; and the artist has ably portrayed the magic great thing about the scene which is mapped out beneath him as he stands beside the boundary- wall of the palace backyard. The undulating shores, belted with homes, and sheltered by richly-wooded hills,—the castle-crowned rocks,—the gleaming sails of the passing vessels upon the channel,—and, far a wav, the “ stonn-tossed Euxine,” lashing its billows as if in scorn towards the fortress-barriers that bristle its shores—all mix to kind an image nicely calculated to arrest the attention of the painter and the admiration of the vacationer.



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