Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

to make arrangements for my departure. He went to the respectable Jew, Baba Khan, who spoke with the Aga Sakals, or Lords of the beards, of the different tribes. The Aga Sakals assembled, and agreed to send me with Awaz, one of the Aga Sakals: he stroked his beard, I did the same, and we put our hands into each other's; and after having promised him a present upon my arrival at Bokhara, I set out with him on February 13. Two Osbeks from Karakol, near Bokhara, who had bought six slaves, joined us on the road. Saher Beyk,* the most respectable Aga of Sarakhs, who wishes to go to England, to get a present from the Padishah, (i. e. King,) and the principal Jews accompanied me the distance of two miles from Sarakhs. Before they returned to Sarakhs, they desired me to bless them, which I did. We stroked our beards. Saher B^yk and Baba Khan, the Jew, returned; and I continued my journey, accompanied by Ishak, my Jew servant, and one Guzl-Bash servant from Meshed, and the six Guzl-Bash slaves, three of whom were chained together. We passed through the barren desert covered with snow. The caravans generally stop the first day near a well; but Awaz, having secret instructions from the Turkomauns, did not go with me near it; for they are very jealous of showing their wells to strangers; we were therefore taken another road. We observed at a distance thirty Al-Aman on horseback, coming from Mowr on a plundering expedition to Khorossaun; for since those of Sarakhs had promised Abbas Mirza to desist from Foray, those of Mowr continued it. Awaz said to me, "Now stop here, for the Turkomauns are Adam-Khoor, (Men eaters;) I must now go and speak with the Turkomauns." He went to his brethren, and said to them, "I have under my protection a Jewish Peer, i. e. an old man, from Jerusalem, with his two servants; he was the guest of the Aga Sakals of Sarakhs, and of Goosh-Bekee, (i. e. Prime Minister of the» King,) of Bokhara; do not come near him, lest you frighten the man; for he knows that the Turkomauns are Adam-Khoor." Without saying one word, they took another direction, and we proceeded on our journey. The first night we stretched ourselves upon a straw mat, after we had cleared the ground a little from the snow; we burnt some trees, by means of which we were enabled to make tea, and warm ourselves, and smoke comfortably our galyoon. Late in the night, an Osbek, in the service of the Prime Minister of the King of Bokhara, came on horseback from Meshed, to which place he was sent by his master, for the purpose of enquiring into the

* When Saher Beyk learnt that I had given six Tomauns to Goolitsh Mohammed Khan, as a present for having accompanied me from Meshed to Sarakhs, he observed: "My heart burns that you should squander away your money on such a rascal as Goolitsh. Mohammed Khan; the next iime I shall accompany you to Bukhara." When I asked how much I should have to give'him, he replied, "My dear brother, you must know that I am not such a mean man as Goolitsh Mohammed Khan, and therefore you ought to give me twice as much as you gave to that scoundrel."

strength of the army of Abbas Mirza; he said to Awaz, my Turkomaun, "This is Youssuf Wolff, the Englishman, who argued with the Mullahs at Meshed." My Turkomaun observed, that he must not make a noise about me at Mowt; for if any thing should happen to me on the road, no caravan must ever appear again from Bokhara at Sarakhs. He promised to be quiet about me on the road.

Feb. 16 We arrived among the wild Turkomauns at Mowr,

likewise called Merve. It was very odd to see the Turkomaun ladies of Merve with a kind of ivory horns, as their head ornaments, such as the females of the Drooses in Mount Lebanon wear. They saluted us kindly; for the King of Khiva had given orders to the Turkomauns at Mowr to receive kindly the Awliyaan, i. e. Holy man of England. The Turkomauns of Merve, or Mowr, live in four different camps, several miles distant from each other: viz. Mowr, or Merve, or Akhal; Tatshan, which corresponds with our word Dutch; Tekka; Talkhtoon.

A party of Turkomauns were just going to one of their priests, for the purpose of obtaining his blessing, previous to their going on a plundering expedition. They then recited a portion of the Koran, called on the name of God and the Prophet, stroked their beards, and off they rode.

The Turkomauns here, derive their genealogy from Salor, a descendant of Japhet. Of the first and last of those four great divisions above mentioned, I have learnt that they subdivide themselves as follows. 1. Akhal: Sarog, Bahraj, Khorossaunle, Sohkte, Goltsha, Ali Shah, Batang, Kay-Ali, Kale-Bash, Kusel. 2. Talkhtoon: Ortoo Khoja, Alam, Beyk-Bolook, Jolom, Aloo-Bolook. The second and third contain the following subdivisions, which I am not able to assign with certainty. 3. At Tekka and Tatshan.Konkor, Yoossoof, Khar-Konkoor, Sishmas, Bakhshe, Amaanshah, Saryase, Koktsha, Karamaat, Borghaz, Khoja, Arok, Karatsha, _Kara, Mojawr, Tasheeakh. Here I was informed likewise about the tribes of Turkomauns residing in the city of Orgauntsh, which are mixtively of the former: Yimr-Ali, Yamoot, Tshotoor, GogIan, Karakalbag, Kheterle, Alele.

The disciples of that Jewish Saint, Joseph of Talkhtoon, who follows principles similar to those of Madame Guyon, came out to meet me with the rest of the Jews, and thanked God that I entered their tents in peace, to speak to them about Jesus of Nazareth; for they had heard of me by Jews of Meshed and Sarakhs, and that I had given New Testaments to them. Joseph of Talkhtoon is engaged with the Khaleefa of the Turkomauns in prayer, for obtaining a higher light. He was just occupied in reading a Persian manuscript on Divine love. I translated to them several portions of the New Testament; for I had no more to give them. The Jews of Mowr believed from Ezechiel xxxvii. that that Prophet raised the dead. I gave them the true interpretation of it. They observed, "Mullah Mohammed Ali at Meshed is an interest. ed liar,* but you speak the truth." The Jews here are, as was said before, from Meshed; but they reside here constantly. A few years ago, two of them were killed by Turkomauns; but Allah Kolle Khan of Khiva avenged their death.

The chief Jews here are, Mullah Eliahu Ben Mullah Daniel, Mullah Michael Ben Mordecai, Mullah Ishak Ben Ahron Masse, Mullah Mordecay Ben Aga Shelome, David Ben Aga Joone Nissim. I preached to them in their reed-cottages, Jesus Christ, and him crucified; and ransomed an old Guzl-Bash from slavery by means of a Jew. A great demand for New Testaments was made by them; but even here, infidelity has crept in among the Jews, who are more fond of reading Hafiz than the Bible.

I wrote the following letter to Mirza Baba:

"Under the protection of H. R. H. Abbas Mirza, I have arrived safely so far, where I am in the tents of hospitable and kind Jews, surrounded by Turkomauns; and to-morrow morning I set out for Bokhara, accompanied by the principal Turkomaun of Sarakhs, two Osbeks, and one Jew. I am already announced to both the Kings of Bokhara and Khiva. I cannot now write to you more, lest my letter, by its bulk, excite suspicion in the eyes of the Turkomauns, who are the bearers of it. I have preached the Gospel fully to the Jews and Turkomauns of Mowr and Sarakhs: the latter consider me as the Forerunner of the Saheb Zemaan (the Lord of the age)."

I insert here the following letter to His Royal Highness Abbas Mirza himself, as the best answer to a mistaken statement of Lieut. Burnes, asserting that I had travelled about as a Mohammedan pilgrim.

Mowr, in Toorkestaun, in the Territory of the King of Khiva.

February 16, 1832.

I arrived last night at Mowr. Awaz-Aga, who accompanies me to Bokhara, behaved very well. Your Royal Highness has shown me such great kindness, that I feel it to be my duty to inform your Royal Highness, that on my return to Meshed I shall be accompanied by fifty Turkomauns and Teemooree, whom I have convinced that slave making is sin; and they will come with me to your Royal Highness, and take service in the army of your Royal Highness. The Jews of Mowr beg me to mention to your Royal Highness, that they had been falsely accused by the people of Meshed, of having taken part in the men-selling of the Turkomauns; and your Royal Highness may rest assured, that that report is a lie. On the contrary, they gave meat and money to the unfortunate slaves. As the report of my mission to the Jews already reached the ears of the King of Bokhara, and express messengers are gone on my account, from the agents of the King of Bokhara, to His Majesty, I humbly petition your Royal Highness to recom

* Mullah Mohammed Ali, to whom the Jews of Mowr alluded, is the Sooffee, whom I have mentioned as the teacher of Sooffeism among the Jews of Meshed.

mend me strongly to the Kings of Bokhara and Khiva, and mention to them that lam a missionary to the Jews. I beg your Royal Highness to command Mirza Baba to send a copy of this letter to Lady Georgiana.

I am, Prince, Your most dutiful servant,
Joseph Wolff, Missionary.

My letter to His Royal Highness Abbas Mirza was copied by Mirza Baba, and sent off to Lady Georgiana with a letter from Mirza Baba himself, by which it will be seen still more clearly, that it was known by Mussulmans (for Mirza Baba is a Mussulman) as well as by the Jews, that I am a Missionary. The letter is copied verbatim.

Meshed, March 18, 1832. My Lady, I beg to have the honour to send to your Ladyship, by the desire of His Royal Highness Abbas Mirza, the copy of a letter from His Excellency the Rev. Mr. Joseph Wolff, and am happy to state that His Excellency has safely reached to Bokhara, and is likely, finding the roads safe, he will proceed to Khiva and Caubul, after being sometime in Bokhara. With your Ladyship's permission I will do myself the pleasure to inform your Ladyship the news I shall be favoured from His Excellency in future. Hoping to remain, My Lady,

Your Ladyship's humble servant,
(Signed) M. Baba.

The Jews observe that in these four places, Mowr, Tekka, Tajan, and Talkhtoon, there are altogether 100,000 Turkomauns. Every Turkomaun is in possession of one horse.

HISTORY OF OMAR KHAN, SON OF THE LATE KING HYDAR OF BOKHARA.

Shah Hydar died several years ago; after his death Omar Khan took possession of the throne, and killed the rest of his brothers, except Behador, the son of a slave-girl, who escaped to some other place. Goosh-Bekee, the present Prime Minister, expelled Omar Khan, and wrote to Behador Khan, that he should come and take possession of the throne. He killed the greater part of his relations, and was contriving to kill Omar Khan; when suddenly the news reached him, that Omar Khan had been killed, and solemnly buried. But Omar was not dead; his mother had killed a slave in his stead, and sent her son away in the dress of a Dervish. Omar went to Mazaur, to perform his devotion at the tomb of ShaheMerdaun, the King of men, i. e. Ali: thence he went to Constantinople; and whilst I was at Mowr, he appeared at Tekka, where he was recognized by a Mullah of Bokhara, who had been his teacher in former times, in the house of the Turkomaun Rasa Tekka, of the tribe Khora Ahmed. Omar Khan sent off immediately an express to Allah Kolle Khan, desiring him to assist him in regaining the throne of Bokhara.

The Jews brought me to their respective cottages, into which the Turkomauns came to see the Awliyaan, arrived from a distant' land. It is a current belief among the Jews of Mowr, that a Jew, Simon Ben Shatakh, had assisted Mohammed in compiling the Koran.

DEPARTURE FROM MOWR.

After having given the blessing to my Jewish brethren, and to the Turkomauns, and recited Psalm 121, according to the custom of the Jews here, I parted from my kind hosts, and continued my journey to Bokhara, in company of my two servants, a Jew and a Guzl-Bash, and Awaz the Turkomaun, the two Osbeks, and the six slaves. One of the slave boys continually lamented, saying, "'the Al-Aman have taken me, poor, poor Guzl-Bash, and carry me to Orgauntsh and Bokhara!" He was of the holy city of Meshed; he had only gone out of the gate to play, and the Al-Aman came, and took the poor, poor Guzl-Bash, and carried him to Orgauntsh and Bokhara. In the morning, as soon as the poor boy opened his eyes, he lamented, "The Al-Aman have taken me, poor, poor Guzl-Bash, and carry me to Orgauntsh, and Bokhara."

I was struck by observing some of the slaves from Beloochistan calling the Turkomauns Franke, i. e. Franks, or Europeans.

Thus we wandered through a barren, cold, and unkind desert, drinking snow, and making tea with it, all the way to Jehaar-Joo.

ARRIVAL AT JEHAAR-JOO.

FA. 25.—We arrived at Jehaar-Joo, which means four wells; for there are four wells there. It is a city of a considerable population, belonging to the King of Bokhara. The Governor of the place is a Calmuc; he has the title of Emeer.

There were arrived in the Caravan-seray several Jews from Bokhara; as I had sent on before my Jewish servant, they came out to meet me, and took me to their rooms; they were Mullah Gaday, his son, and several others. The Governor sent his men, desiring me to tell him who I was, and at the same time giving me to understand, that I should tell the truth; for he was obliged to report my arrival to the Goosh-Bekee, i. e. Prime Minister of the King of Bokhara.*

I sent him word, that I was a Jew, who believes in Moses, the Prophets, and Jesus; and that I came to this country with letters for Goosh-Bekee, and with firmauns from the Sultan of Constantinople: my object was to see the Jews of Bokhara and Balkh, and speak to them about Jesus, and to find the Ten Tribes of Israel; that I was an English subject, and a Mehmoon (Guest) of Goosh-Bekee; that Goosh-Bekee was already informed of my coming, &c. Rabbi Gaday informed me, that the old Rabbis of Bokhara assert, that Balkh and Bokhara were the Habor and Halah of 2 Kings xvii. 6, and that the Ammoo, called likewise the Gihoon or Oxus, is the river Gozan, mentioned in the same

* The name of the Goosh-Bekee was formerly Hakeem Beyk, i. e. Chief Physician; but since he is King's Minister, he is called Goosh-Bekee, i. e, Ear of the Lord (King).

« AnteriorContinuar »