Narrative of a Year's Journey Through Central and Eastern Arabia (1862-1863)

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Page 300 - Sublime, but neither bleak nor bare Nor misty, are the mountains there, — Softly sublime, profusely fair ! Up to their summits clothed in green And fruitful as the vales between They lightly rise And scale the skies, And groves and gardens still abound, For where no shoot Could else take root The peaks are shelved and terraced round...
Page 138 - The cause of all this was a vast swarm of locusts, here alighted in their northerly wanderings from their birthplace in the Dahna ; their camp extended far and wide, and we had already disturbed their outposts. These insects are wont to settle on the ground after sunset, and there, half stupefied by the night chill, to await the morning rays, which warm them once more into life and movement. This time our dromedaries did the work of the sun, and it would be hard to say which of the two were the most...
Page 177 - Bedouin women would on this kalometer be represented by zero, or at most i; a degree higher would represent the female sex of Nejed; above them rank the women of Shomer, who are in their turn surmounted by those of Djowf. The fifth or sixth degree symbolizes the fair ones of Hasa; the seventh those of Katar; and lastly, by a sudden rise of ten degrees at least, the seventeenth or eighteenth would denote the pre-eminent beauties of 'Oman.
Page 10 - The first of the great sins is the giving divine honours to a creature.' " ' Of course,' I replied, ' the enormity of such a sin is beyond all doubt But if this be the first, there must be a second ; -what is it ? ' " ' Drinking the shameful,' in English, ' smoking tobacco,' -was the unhesitating answer. " ' And murder, and adultery, and false witness ? ' I suggested. " ' God is merciful and forgiving,' rejoined my friend ; ' that is, these are merely little sins.
Page 119 - Threatened folks live long," thought I, and had no difficulty in showing the calm which I really felt. So looking him coolly in the face, I replied, " Istaghfir Allah,
Page 141 - Hardly the place of such antiquity, Or note of these great monarchies we find : Only a fading verbal memory, And empty name in writ is left behind : But when this second life and glory fades, And sinks at length in time's obscurer shades, A second fall succeeds, and double death invades.
Page 122 - I turned my head to look and see if no one was following with " evil," as Arabs say, in his hand. But there was none, and I reached the quiet alley and low door where a gleam through the chinks announced the anxious watch of my companions, who now opened the entrance, overjoyed at seeing me back sound and safe from so critical a parley. Our plan for the future was soon formed. A day or two we were yet to remain in Ri'ad, lest haste should seem to imply fear, and thereby encourage pursuit. But during...
Page 124 - Soley', and there remain concealed in a given spot, till Aboo-'Eysa should come and pick us up. All this was arranged; at break of dawn Aboo-'Eysa took his leave, and Barakat, Mobeyreek, and myself, were once more high perched on our dromedaries, their heads turned to the south-east, keeping the hillock range between us and Ri'ad, which we saw no more. Our path led us over low undulating ground, a continuation of Wadi Etaneefah, till after about four hours...
Page 131 - ... to those who follow ; while intense heat and glaring light reflected on all sides combine with drought and weariness to confuse and bewilder the adventurer, till he loses his compass and wanders up and down at random amid a waste solitude that soon becomes his grave. Many have thus perished ; even whole caravans have been known to disappear in the Dahna without a vestige.
Page 132 - For, after about three hours of night travelling, or rather wading, among the sand-waves, till men and beasts alike were ready to sink for weariness, a sharp altercation arose between Aboo-'Eysa and El-Ghannam, each proposing a different direction of march. We all halted a moment, and raised our eyes heavy with drowsiness and fatigue, as if to see which of the contending parties was in the right. It will be long before I forget the impression of that moment.

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