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of food will induce some of them to touch. grave; their burying-ground, therefore, They do not allege for it any prejudice consists of extensive groves of these trees, founded on the Levitical law, which in which they reserve exclusively to themduces some worthy people among ourselves. The Armenians generally plant selves to abstain from swine's flesh; but on such occasions a tree, * which yields a they assign physical causes. They assert resinous gum of a strong aromatic odour, that a hare has certain bodily habits that which fills the air, and corrects the exhatoo nearly resemble the human ; and, lations from the graves. They grow to a moreover, that it is of a melancholy tém- large size, and form very picturesqué obperament, to which they themselves have jects in a landscape. Their cemetery on too great a disposition, and which the the Bosphorus is covered with these trees, flesh of this, animal would have a ten- and from its elevated situation, the view dency to increase.
it commands, and the view it presents, - Aš the Armenians are thus severe in is perhaps the most interesting grove in their discipline, so they are rigid in their 'the world. Here whole Armenian families, doctrines. They hold the tenet of infant of two or three generations together, are baptism, but insist on the necessity of constantly seen sitting round the tombs, total inmersion of the body. The priest, and holding visionary communications therefore, takes the child by the hands with their departed friends. According and feet, and plunges him three times in to their belief, the souls of the dead pass the water; and so necessary to the spiri- into a place called Gayank, which is not tual effect do they hold the washing of a purgatory, for they suffer neither pain the whole body, that if any part remain nor pleasure, but retain a perfect conunwetted, they raise the water in their sciousness of the past. From this state hand, and so purify the unwashed limb, they may be delivered by the alms and The ceremony of chrism, or anointing the prayers of the living, which the pious infant with oil, takes place after baptism, Armenians give liberally for their friends. The forehead, eyes, cars, stomach, palms Easter Monday is the great day on which of the hands, and soles of the feet, are they assemble for this purpose ; but every touched with consecrated oil, and then Sunday, and frequently week days, are the bread of the Eucharist is touched to devoted to the same object. The priest the lips.
who accompanies them, first proceeds to The Eucharist, or, as they call it, the tombs, and reads the pragers for the 6. Surp usium,” is administered to adults dead, in which he is joined by the family. on Sundays and festivals, in a manner They then separate into groups, or singly different from all other Christian churches. sitting down by favourite graves, call its They use unleavened bread, or wafer, inhabitants about them, and, by the help which they steep in the wine, from whence of a strong imagination, really seem to the priest takes it with his fingers, and converse with them. This pious and pendistributes it indiscriminately to the com sive duty being performed with their dead municants. There is generally, beside friends, they retire to some pleasant spot the priest, a boy who assists; to bim he near the place, where provisions had been presents his fingers, after he has given previously brought, and cheerfully enjoy the elements, and he devoutly licks off the society of the living: These family whatever has adhered to them. The Ar visits to the mansions of the departed are menians, to a certain extent, believe in a favourite enjoyment of this people. I the doctrine of Transubstantiation on this have frequently joined their groups with. occasion, and take literally the expression out being considered an intruder ; and, I of “ this is my body." They further ima- confess, I have always returned pleased, gine that these elements, converted into and even edified, by the pious though misthe real presence, remain for twenty-four taken practice. hours in the stomach undigested, during "The island of Marmora lies almost which time they never spit, nor suffer a within sight of this place, and abounds in dog, or any other impure thing, to touch marble ; this stone is very cheap and their mouths.
abundant, and no other is used in erectThe cemeteries of the people of the ing tombs. Some of these family mau. East are not, as with us, small, and scato solea are rich and well sculptured; others tered in detached places through their of them are very remarkably distinguished. cities; but, there are large common re. The first thing that strikes a stranger, is ceptacles for the dead outside their towns. a multitude of little cavities cut at the In the vicinity of Constantinople, each angles of the stone; these are monunation has its own; and the Turks, Jews, ments of Armenian charity. The trees Greeks, and Armenians, form immense abound with birds, who frequently perish cities of the dead. That of the Arme- for want of water in that lot and arid nians occupies a space of near an hun soil. These cups are intended to be so dred acres, on a hill that overlooks the many reservoirs to retain water for their Bosphorus. The Turks, on the death of a friend, plant a young cypress over his
* Pistaccia Terebinthina, N. S. No.23.
use, as they are filled by every shower of individuals with cash in all their embarrain. The Armenians are fond of com- rassments; they are the conductors of memorating the profession of the dead; the very few manufactures which exist in they therefore engrave on his tomb the the empire; and they are the merchants implements of his trade, so that every who carry on the whole internal trade of one may know how he had gained his Asia. They enjoy, however, a perilous living ; but the most extraordinary cir- protection: the very favour they are shown cumstance is, that they are also fond of is a snare for their destruction; for every displaying how he came by his death : you man that acquires wealth by its means, therefore see on their tombs the effigies of knows that he holds his life only as long men sometimes hanging, sometimes stran- as the circumstance is unknown. led, and sometimes beheaded, with their I t is singular that the Armenians have heads in their hands. To account for this never shown the slightest sympathy or extraordinary fondness for displaying the common feeling with their christian breinfamous death of their friends, they say thren the Greeks. No imenian has ever that no Armenian is ever executed for a yet been found to join their cause, nor to real crime ; but when a man has acquired assist it in any way, either by money or a sufficient fortune to become an object of influence. Resembling Quakers, howcupidity to the Turks, he is then, on some ever, in many of their habits, they are, pretext, put to death, that his property like them, a quiet, passive, sober people, may be confiscated; an executed man, and greatly averse to war. Besides this, therefore, implies only a man of wealth there unfortunately exist some religious and consequence. This display is a bitter differences between them and the Greeks, but just satire on Turkish justice, though wbich embitter their mutual feelings. The the Turks are so stupid as not to com Greeks despise them for their timidity; prehend it. I brought with me a worthy and, arrogating to themselves exclusively Armenian priest one day, who, with fear the name of " Christians," they seem to and trembling, translated for me the in: exclude the Armenians from christian scriptions on some of these tombs. I'annex community. one as a sample :
The Armenians, though fond of reli
gious books, have little taste for, or acYou see my place of burial here in this verdant field.
quaintance with, general literature. They I give my Goods to the Robbers,
purchase with great avidity all the Bibles
.furnished by the British and Foreign My Soul to the Regions of Death, The World I leave to God,
Bible Society. Their patriarch sanctioned And my Blood I shed in the Holy Spirit.
and encouraged-a new edition of the New You who meet my Tomb,
Testament, which the Rev. Mr. Leeves, . Say for me,
the agent of the Bible Society, has had
printed at an Armenian press at Con" Lord, I have sinned.” 1197.
stantinople; and I was encouraged to
have a translation made into their lanNotwithstanding this treatment, the guage, of some of the Homilies of our Armenians are in higher favour with the Church, on account of the Homily Society Turks than any other tributary people. in London, which I left in progress. They They designate the Greeks, whom they de. had early a printing-office attached to the test, “ Yesheer,” or “ Slaves,” and con- Patriarchate, and another more recently sider them so; the Jews “ Musaphir," or established by a private company at - Strangers,” because they came from Korou Chesmé, in the neighbourhood of Spain ; but the Armenians “ Rayas,” or Constantinople. They have also a third, " Subjects,” because their country is now which was set up at the convent of St. a province of Turkey, and they consider Lazare, in Venice, from whence has them Asiatics, and a part of themselves. * issued a number of books in their lanThis favour is greatly enhanced by the guage. Their publications are, however, wealth which the industry and enterprize almost exclusively confined to books on of the Armenians bring to the impo- religious subjects. I obtained a list of all verished and lazy Turks. They are, there. the books printed at the patriarchal press, fore, appointed to all those situations from the year 1697, the year of its estawhich the Turks themselves are incapable biishment, to the end of the year 1823. of filling. They are the Masters of the It conveys a better idea of the literary Mint, and conduct the whole process of taste and progress of the Armenians, than coining inoney; they are the "Saraffs," any other document could do. In a space or bankers, who supply government and of a hundred and twenty-five years, only
fifty-two books were printed, but of each * These are, strictly speaking, the de- of these several editions. Forty-seven of signations by wbich the Turks distinguish them were commentaries on the Bible, these people, though in a loose way all sermons, books of prayer, lives of saints, are called Rayas who pay the Haratch, or hymns, and psalters, and a panegyric upon Capitation Táx.
the angels. The five not on sacred sub
jects, were, " An Armenian Grammar," heard of out of Asia, and their existence a “ History of Etchmeasin," a “ Treatise is hardly recognized as a christian people. on Good Behaviour,” a “ Tract on Pre- They are still, however, numerous and recious Stones," and a “ Romance of the spectable; and as their number is daily City of Brass."
increasing, they may yet form the nucleus The Armenians annually publish an of Christianity in the East, when the unalmanack, but, like the Greeks, Russians, fortunate Greeks shall have been exterand other branches of the Eastern Church, minated. There are, at the present day, adhere to the old style, rejecting the refor- In the mountains of their native ination of the calendar which the Western country, about . . . . . 1,000,000 Christians adopted. Their almanack, how In Constantinople and the viever, is distinguished by some peculiari cinity . . . . . . . ties.
.. They call the 8th of February, In different parts of Persia . .. 100,000 Gemrëi evel behava: that is, the day in . In India .... . 40,000 which the heat of the sun descends into In Hungary, and other parts of the air. They denominate the 25th of Europe. . . . . . . 10,000 February, Gemrëi sani béab, the day on In Africa, and America . . . 1,000 which it descends into the waters : and the 4th of March, they distinguish as
1,351,000 Gemrëi salis filtoorab, or the day in which it descends into the earth, and renders it EXTRACT OF A LETTER FROM ITALY. fit for all agricultural purposes. Besides this, they mark occasional variations of Visit to Loretto-Its Chapel and Relics-Sinio temperature by events which they say
gaglia--Urbino, the birth place of Rafaelle they have occasioned. The 9th of March,
--Its Scenery - Burning of Bibles at Naand seven days and eight nights after ples-- Effects of the Bible Society's Contró. they call Berdouil adjus, or the cold of the - versy in Italy. old women; becanse, as they say, when it We left Rome by the Perugia road, first was noted, a number of old women passed Turni without stopping to see the perished in the fire, in order to escape the water-fall, and crossed the Appenines by intensity of the cold. The weather, be- Tollino, Casenove, and Tolenteno. The fore and after this period, is very mild; Appenines are always beautiful, cross but during my residence at Constanti- them when you will, but I think this road nople, I remarked that every year, at this the most varied and the most luxuriant. precise period, a N. E. wind set in from Our next point was Lorretto. You are the Black Sea, generally accompanied by not ignorant of the character this little a drift of snow, and the thermometer fell town has held in Catholic Europe. The sometimes to the freezing point. The house in which the Virgin Mary lived at Armenian almanack, therefore, is founded Nazareth, was brought to the shores of the on the constant observation of the people, Adriatic by angels, and after sundry and justified by the surprising regularity movings, (always angelic,) was at length with which the anomaly annually occurs. fixed on the hill of Lorretto. The pil
The Armenian language has this sin- grimages of sovereigns, princesses, of gular peculiarity, that, different from all noble ladies, and noble knights to this others in the East, it is read like those of celebrated shrine, are too well known to Europe, from left to right. This is ac- require description, and the treasures decounted for by supposing it to be a lan- posited by the votaries in the sacristy of guage of modern structure, and the mode the church, as offerings to the Madonna, of writing it introduced among the nation are equally notorious. The French reafter their intercourse with Europeans. velled here in gold and jewels. The young There is no such writing found on the priest who showed us the sacristy, told us coins or other. ancient monuments of the of their sacrilegious robberies with tearful country. At the present day, even its use eyes, and turned our attention, with a is very limited, being exclusively confined triumphant smile, to the new presents that to the people themselves, and never had been recently made, and to the recent learned by those with whom they have visit of some Catholic princesses and noble any intercourse. Almost all Armenians, ladies, who were endeavouring to revive therefore, are compelled to learn Turkish the fallen splendour of this holy house. or Italian, as mediums of communication, We saw the devotees going round and which they often prefer, and understand round the house on their knees, the conbetter than their own. I have met with stant repetition of which penance, age upany Armenians who could read and write after age, has worn deep furrows in the both these languages, who could not trans- solid marble. There is a book printed · late for me their own books.
and published at Lorretto, giving an ac.' The Armenians, though once well known count of the various aerial wanderings of in the West, where their spirit of com-. this uncouth and miserable fabric. There mercial enterprize carried them through are attestations of witnesses, who saw the every part of Europe, are now selam angels carry it through the air, and the
deposition of a party of priests, who were the illusion would bave been complete ; despatched to Nazareth, to compare the I should have been carried back at once size and character of the walls with the three hundred years. But though the foundation. What gives a peculiar value people may be altered the country is not. and interest to it is, that the “ santissima The hills over which Rafaelle looked, the schudella," or most holy porridge-pot--the rivers by which be wandered, and the paths very one in which the Virgin Mary made which he daily trod ; these still exist, and pap, was found hanging to the walls; and these the mind clings to with the most dein a little niche was a crucifix, which the lightful associations ; there is a well just learned editor wisely observes is, probably, without the town, which I could be positive the first that was ever used in Christian is the very one he introduced in his picture devotion. This sort of book is pub- of Rebecca, and the thistles and weeds lished and read by Catholics, real, enlight seem to be the lineal descendants of those ened, emancipated Catholics. Glorious he put into the landscape of his early emancipation ! noble liberty! They are holy families. I staid at Urbino three free to believe every thing but truth, and days, and while my travelling companion to do every thing but righteousness! We recovered his health and spirits, I made left them wearing the hard stones with some memorandums of the town and its their knees, and kissing with the pro- vicinity. foundest devotion the holy porridge-pot. There have been two attempts made We soon now left behind us every thing that to send Bibles here, one by Mr. and was beautiful in scenery and landscape. the other by the means of an English merThe shores of the Adriatic are flat, stale, chant. In both cases they were ordered and unprofitable, and but for the beauty to be burnt by the executioner; one parof the oxen, which are of a fine cream cel, however, was saved, by the intercolour, and bring to mind the basso re ference of the British Consul, and sent to lievos of the ancients, there would be no Malta, not without some twitches of conthing to induce one to look to the right science in the Archbishop and Ministers hand or to the left. We passed through of Police, who thought it much more Sinigaglia at the time of the fair ; it was righteous to have them destroyed. curious to see the principal streets of the The quarrels of the members of the tową covered entirely by an awning of Bible Society are copied into all the canvass, stretched across 'from roof to journals, and are looked upon as a great roof. The effects of the shops, with all omen of good to the true church. There their treasures spread out, and the people was always something about that Instiin their gayest dresses, walking in a de tution which frightened them terribly, and lightful shade, was a thing new to an they are already singing songs of triumph English eye. At Pesaro my travelling at the prospect of its fall. companion knocked up, and as Pesaro contains nothing curious. I was resolred. IRISH SUPERSTITION.--THE FESTIVAL OF if possible, to go to Urbino. There is an
ST, DECLAN. arbitrary post law in the Pope's dominions. The following narrative, extracted from which compels you, if you arrive at a the Waterford Mail, describes a scene of town with post horses, to leave it with gross superstition and debauchery, which post horses, or not leave it at all for three is annually exhibited under the eye of days. Mr. after much hesitation, many Romish priests, and in the venerated consented to go with me to Urbino, and name of religion. This, and similar inwe were obliged to be subject to the charge stances of Irish fanaticism have been the of post horses, though it is not a post frequent subjects of just reprobation in road, nor did the horses do post service. the public journals, yet they are continued How shall I tell you all the delights of and encouraged by that very priesthood this visit to the birth-place of the greatest who possess sufficient influence at once to painter the world has produced. Urbino abolish them. Long have they withheld is situated on a high and romantic hill; multitudes of their deluded people from its very position indicates the cradle of the blessings of a scriptural education, and genius; and it is so far from all high it cannot longer be doubted, after the roads, and so out of the way of ordinary transactions of the last general election, traffic, that you can almost imagine it to that the Romish clergy of Ireland possess be just what it was in Rafaelle's time. I influence sufficient to induce the peasantry looked with veneration on its walls, en. to defy their landlords, and hazard all tered its gates in silence, and trod on its their worldly hopes for the furtherance of very weeds with respect and tenderness. the true faith. We shall not then be guilty The only thing that annoyed me was the of uncharitable censures, when we declare very mean and unpoetical appearance and that those priests who possess this comdress of the people; had I found such manding controul over the people, and beings in Urbino, as are to be found in yet tolerate these scenes of degrading susome of the Roman states, dressed in the perstition and brutalizing excess on the magnificent costume of Mola or Sonnino, patrons of fanaticism and crime, and the
enemies alike of the country and of the is the well of the Saint. Thither the religion which their impositions de crowds repair, the devotions at the rock grade.
being ended. llaving drank plentifully " This apnual scene of disgusting super- of its waters, they wash their legs and stition was exhibited at Ardmore, in the feet in the streain which issues from it, county of Waterford, on the 24th ult., and, telling their beads, sprinkle themthat being the day appointed by the Roman selves and their neighbours with the sancCatholic Church on which honour is pub. tifying liquid. These performances over, licly to be paid to the memory of Declan, the grave of the patron Saint is then rethe tutelary Saint of that district. Several sorted to. Hundreds at a time crowded thousand persons of all ages and sexes around it, and crushed and trampled one assembled upon this occasion. The greater upon another in their eagerness to obtain part of the extensive strand, which forms a handful of the earth which is believed to the western part of Ardmore Bay, was li- cover the mortal remains of Declan. A terally covered by a dense mass of people. woman stood breast high in the grave, Tents and stands for the sale of whiskey, and served out a small portion of its clay &c. &c. were placed in parallel lines along to each person requiring it, from whom the shore; the whole, at a distance, bore in return she received a penny or halfthe appearance of a vast encampment, penny for the love of the Saint. In the Each tent had its green ensign waving on course of time the abode of the saint has high, bearing some patriotic motto. ... sunk to the depth of nearly four feet, the At an early hour in the day, those whom clay having been scooped away by the a religious feeling had drawn to the spot finger nails of the pious Catholics. commenced their devotional exercises, in őr A human skull of large dimensions a state of half nudity, by passing under was placed at the head of the tomb, the holy rock of St. Declan. The male before which the people bowed, believing part of the assemblage clad in trowsers it to be the identical skull of the and shirts, or in shirts alone; the fe tutelar saint, who that day was present male, in petticoats pinned above the to look upon their devotions, and who knees, and some of the more devout would, on his return to the mansions still less clad, performed for their souls' of bliss, intercede at the throne of sake · this religious ceremony. Two grace for all such as did him honour. hundred and ninety persons of both This visit to St. Declan's grave comsexes, thus prepared, knelt at one time pleted the devotional exercises of a day, indiscriminately around the stone, and held in greater honour than the Sabbath passed separately under it to the other by all those who venerate the Saint's side. This was not effected without con- name and worship at his shrine. Neversiderable pain and difficulty, owing to the theless, the sanctity of a day, marked narrowness of the passage and the sharp- even by the most humiliating exercises ness of the rocks within. Stretched at of devotion, did not prevent its night full length on the ground, on the face and being passed in riot and debauchery. The stomach, each devotee moved forward as tents, which, throughout the day, the if in the act of swimming, and thus duties owing to the Patron Saint had squeezed or dragged themselves through. caused to be empty, as evening closed Both sexes were obliged to submit to this became thronged with the devotionalists humiliating mode of proceeding. Very of the morning, and resounded till day. indecent exposures of the person were un... break with the oaths of the blasphemer, avoidably made, differing in degree as the and the shouts of the drunkard." corpulence of the sufferer caused, in the passing, exertions more or less violent.
CHALLENGE TO THE POPISH CLERGY, Upwards of eleven hundred persuns were ob- The following challenge to a public disserved to go through this ceremony in the cussion has recently appeared in several course of the day. A reverend gentleman, of the Dublin newspapers :who stood by part of the time, was heard " I, the undermentioned, challenge, to exclaim, 0, great is their faith.'. Se- in the name of the Lord, all the Bishops, veral of their reverences passed and re- and Priests, and Doctors of the Church passed to and from the chapel, close by of Rome, to meet me publicly, in a the holy rock, during the day. This ob-' month hence, in Dublin. Whosoever will ject of so great veneration is believed to please to accept this challenge is rebe holy, and to be endued with miraculous quested to have the goodness to commupowers. It is said to have been wafted nicate with W. C. Hogan, Esq. 44, York from Rome upon the surface of the ocean, Street, Dublin, in order that preliminary at the period of St. Declan's founding his arrangements may be made. . church at Ardmore, and to have borne on
" Joseph WOULFF, , its top a large bell for the church tower, Missionary for Palestine and Persia, formerly and also vestments for the saint himself. . Pupil of the Propaganda at Rome."
“ At a short distance from this sacred " I beg leave to second the above chalmemorial, on a cliff overhanging the sea, lenge, and to state, that whether the