free ebooks

Across Coveted Lands by Arnold Henry Savage Landor

Cellar like bazaar had afforded none


The

handsome dome over the shrine was begun by order of Hussein Nadir Shah, but the gorgeous gilding of the copper plates was not finished till a few years ago by Nasr-ed-din Shah. A theological college also exists at this place. There is a station here of the Indo-European Telegraphs, with an Armenian in charge of it.

Much to my disgust, I was informed that the owner of the post-house had the monopoly of the traffic on the track for six or seven farsakhs more, and so travellers were compelled to submit to a further extortion by having to hire another wheeled conveyance instead of being able to ride. This time I chartered a victoria, and off we went as usual at a gallop.

Two horses had to be sent ahead while the carriage was driven with only two animals through the narrow streets of the bazaar, covered over with awnings or with domed perforated roofs. The place had a tawdry, miserable appearance, the leather shops being the only interesting ones, with the many elaborate saddles, harness, saddle-bags, and horses' ornamentations displayed on nails along the walls.

I saw in a blacksmith's shop an ingenious device to create a perpetual draught with bellows. The big bellows were double and allowed sufficient room to let two boys stand between the two. The boys clinging to handles in the upper part of the bellows and using the weight of their bodies now to the right, then to the left,

inflated first one then the other, the wind of each bellow passing through a common end tube and each being in turn refilled with air while the other was blowing. This human pendulum arrangement was carried on with incredible rapidity by the two boys, who dashed their bodies from one side to the other and back, keeping steady time and holding their feet stationary, but describing an almost complete semicircle with the remainder of the body, the whole length of the boy forming the radius.

There was a shop or two where glass was being blown, and numerous fruit-shops with mountains of pomegranates, water-melons and grapes. At the entrance of the mosques crowds of people stood waiting for admission, some praying outside.

Once out of the town the extra two horses, which were waiting at the gate, were harnessed, and as we sped along, the lungs rejoiced in the pure air of which the stuffy, cellar-like bazaar had afforded none.

Behind, in the far distance, Damovend Mountain, covered with snow, could still be seen rising high above everything. It was undoubtedly a good-looking mountain. To the south-west and west lay indented hills of the most curious shapes and colours--one, particularly, like a roof, with a greenish base surmounted by a raw-sienna top; a twin-sister hill further west presented the same peculiarities. In the distant mountains to the west the same characteristics were apparent, the greenish stratum below extending all along and increasing in depth towards the south.


eBook Search
Social Sharing
Share Button
About us

freefictionbooks.org is a collection of free ebooks that can be read online. Ebooks are split into pages for easier reading and better bookmarking.

We have more than 35,000 free books in our collection and are adding new books daily.

We invite you to link to us, so as many people as possible can enjoy this wonderful free website.

© 2010-2013 freefictionbooks.org - All Rights Reserved.

Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Contact Us