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with sand and rubbish to within a foot of the roof. Under these circumstances, further investigation, except with a gang of workmen, was impossible. We had done enough to prove the interest of the spot, and the only thing still remaining to be accomplished, short of excavation, was the deciphering of the inscription on the cliff. I revisited it some days after for this purpose, and this time succeeded in getting along the ledge to its base. I found it to be about thirty feet long and nine feet high. The name inscribed was that of Rameses the Third; but the upper parts of the figures were so mutilated that I was unable to conjecture what they might signify until I visited the cliffs near Tehneh, ten miles lower down the river. Here I saw, occupying the same position on the rock, what appeared to be the same three figures; but they were unmutilated, and have been decided, by those competent to form an opinion, to be a representation of Rameses the Third receiving a falchion from the hand of the crocodile-headed god Savak, or Savak-Ra, in the presence of Ammon. I feel little doubt that the figures at Kom el Kafara have the same signification. The natives evidently regarded the inscription with a good deal of awe and superstition. The sheikh assured me that I should find the stone at the base of the inscription would give forth a hollow sound if I struck the rock, and told me that there was a mysterious cavern within, inhabited by afrites or devils, to which no entrance had been found, but that it was probably behind a curious stone, which he called a “monkey stone,” the singular shape and black colour of which contrasted strangely with the white limestone. It looked like black basalt; but whether it was, or how it got there, I can form no definite opinion. It is certain, however, that, on striking the rock, I failed to make it emit a hollow sound. Rameses seems to have had a propensity, in which he has been imitated by the modern tourist, of writing his name on rocks, but he did it in a style so imperishable, that it has lasted just three thousand years; and perhaps, considering his great achievements both in war and peace, his vanity may be excused. He rivalled his great predecessor and relative, Rameses the Great, the Sesostris of the Greeks, in his conquests, in the benefits he conferred upon his country, and in the monuments he left behind him. Of these, the temple of Medinet Habou, on the plain of Thebes, is perhaps the most remarkable. Among the inscriptions, there is one which mentions, for the first time in history, several of the nations of Europe; and his tomb is one of the finest of “the tombs of the kings.” I described these facts to the faithful Mohamet, who was extremely anxious to know the interpretation of the inscription he had been the first to point out, and who piloted me along the ledge to enable me to copy it. “This is the name of the great Rameses,” I said. “You have heard of his tomb 2 ” “Yes, sir,” he promptly replied. “Captain Ramsay, I know—he one English gentleman; he not buried here—his tomb furder up.” While our experiences so far had satisfied us that the ancient land of Khemi was far from exhausted as a field for antiquarian research, we also found, in the phase through which the modern land of Egypt is passing, much to interest both in its political and material condition. Our mode of life brought us more closely into contact with the people of all classes than usually falls to the lot either of the tourist hurrying to the First Cataract, or the valetudinarian leading a hotel life in Cairo.
I had myself visited Egypt upon eight previous occasions, on flying visits, and can therefore realise how erroneous is the impression produced upon the traveller who sees it for the first time from the windows of a railway carriage, or the deck of a dahabeeya. The squalid aspect of the mud - villages, the thinly clad ragged population clustered round the holes which serve for entrances into their dungdaubed hovels, and the poverty-stricken aspect of the population, would lead to a most incorrect conclusion, if it was formed entirely on outward appearances. And indeed there has been a time, and that not very remote, when the external aspect of the people did not belie their real condition; when they were thrashed and starved by a rapacious government, crying, like “the horse-leech, “Give, give,’” and which never was satisfied. It is only since the expulsion of the late Khedive that a change has come over the spirit of their dream—a change so great that they are bewildered by its suddenness, and have not yet had time to alter the outward habits of the life to which they have so long been accustomed, or to recover from the sense of fear and mistrust by which they were continually haunted. The character of the people has been created by long periods of misrule and oppression; qualities of apathy, suspicion, and deceit have been engendered, which it will take years of just and equitable administration to eradicate; and it will probably be long before they are stimulated by the steady improvement in their economical condition to rise to a higher conception of the comforts of daily life. No doubt the perfection of the climate tends to militate against any rapid change in this respect. The mudhuts are good enough for a country in which it never rains; the thin ragged gowns warm enough for a temperature which is always pleasant. The land is so fruitful that it does not require the amount of labour which is necessary upon a more ungrateful soil, to be made to yield of its abundance; and the people may have money enough in their pockets to build better houses and buy finer clothes, long before it will enter into their heads to do so. There is a strong and very natural propensity to hoard among them; and the possession