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happened to be in London. The Druse turned white
with rage, and told the Englishman that if they
had been on Mount Lebanon he would have
killed him on the spot. In short, the most
marked character of this people's religion is,
that it accommodates itself to any circumstances.
The Druses are true Pagans. They will consent
either to be baptised or circumcised, in case of
need; but at bottom they remain Druses, and
nothing but Druses. Whenever the Mount is
not threatened by foreign domination, the Druses
turn oppressors, and persecute the unhappy
Maronites. Just now, they carry fire and flame
into the Christian villages; and to conciliate the
Porte, they offer to turn Mussulmans, exactly as
they once turned Christians to ensure the
protection of the European powers.

Such are the two races of men, whom the
Turks, instead of governing, oppose face to face,
until the feebler party shall be exterminated.
Mehemet Ali did govern them with an iron
hand. It is to be hoped that some one else will
soon undertake the task.


THERE are not many places that I find it
more agreeable to revisit when I am in an idle
mood, than some places to which I have never
been. For, my acquaintance with those spots is
of such long standing, and has ripened into an
intimacy of so affectionate a nature, that I take
a particular interest in assuring myself that they
are unchanged.

I never was in Robinson Crusoe's Island, yet
I frequently return there. The colony he
established on it soon faded away, and it is
uninhabited by any descendants of the grave and
courteous Spaniards, or of Will Atkins and the
other mutineers, and has relapsed into its
original condition. Not a twig of its wicker
houses remains, its goats have long run wild
again, its screaming parrots would darken the
sun with a cloud of many flaming colours if a
gun were fired there, no face is ever reflected in
the waters of the little creek which Friday swam
across when pursued by his two brother
cannibals with sharpened stomachs. After comparing
notes with other travellers who have similarly
revisited the Island and conscientiously
inspected it, I have satisfied myself that it
contains no vestige of Mr. Atkins's domesticity or
theology, though his track on the memorable
evening of his landing to set his captain ashore,
when he was decoyed about and round about
until it was dark, and his boat was stove, and
his strength and spirits failed him, is yet plainly
to be traced. So is the hill-top on which Robinson
was struck dumb with joy when the
reinstated captain pointed to the ship, riding within
half a mile of the shore, that was to bear him
away, in the nine-and-twentieth year of his
seclusion in that lonely place. So is the sandy
beach on which the memorable footstep was
impressed, and where the savages hauled up their
canoes when they came ashore for those dreadful
public dinners, which led to a dancing worse
than speech-making. So is the cave where the
flaring eyes of the old goat made such a goblin
appearance in the dark. So is the site of the
hut where Robinson lived with the dog and the
parrot and the cat, and where he endured those
first agonies of solitude, whichstrange to say
never involved any ghostly fancies; a circumstance
so very remarkable, that perhaps he left
out something in writing his record? Round
hundreds of such objects, hidden in the dense
tropical foliage, the tropical sea breaks evermore;
and over them the tropical sky, saving in the
short rainy season, shines bright and cloudless.

Neither, was I ever belated among wolves, on
the borders of France and Spain; nor, did I
ever, when night was closing in and the ground
was covered with snow, draw up my little
company among some felled trees which served as a
breastwork, and there fire a train of gunpowder
so dexterously that suddenly we had three or
four score blazing wolves illuminating the darkness
around us. Nevertheless, I occasionally go
back to that dismal region and perform the feat
again; when indeed to smell the singeing and
the frying of the wolves afire, and to see them
setting one another alight as they rush and
tumble, and to behold them rolling in the snow
vainly attempting to put themselves out, and to
hear their howlings taken up by all the echoes
as well as by all the unseen wolves within the
woods, makes me tremble.

I was never in the robbers' cave, where Gil
Blas lived, but I often go back there and find the
trap-door just as heavy to raise as it used to be,
while that wicked old disabled Black lies
everlastingly cursing in bed. I was never in Don
Quixote's study where he read his books of
chivalry until he rose and hacked at imaginary
giants, and then refreshed himself with great
draughts of water, yet you couldn't move a book
in it without my knowledge, or with my
consent. I was never (thank Heaven) in company
with the little old woman who hobbled out of
the chest and told the merchant Abudah to go
in search of the Talisman of Oromanes, yet I
make it my business to know that she is well
preserved and as intolerable as ever. I was
never at the school where the boy Horatio
Nelson got out of bed to steal the pears: not
because he wanted any, but because every other
boy was afraid: yet I have several times been
back to this Academy, to see him let down out
of the window with a sheet. So with Damascus,
and Bagdad, and Brobdingnag (which has the
curious fate of being usually misspelt when
written), and Lilliput, and Laputa, and the
Nile, and Abyssinia, and the Ganges, and the
North Pole, and many hundreds of placesI
was never at them, yet it is an affair of my life
to keep them intact, and I am always going
back to them.

But when I was in Dullborough one day,
revisiting the associations of my childhood as
recorded in previous pages of these notes, my
experience in this wise was made quite
inconsiderable and of no account, by the quantity of
places and peopleutterly impossible places and