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A Visit to the Holy Land, Egypt, and Italy

This ebook was prepared by Les Bowler, St. Ives, Dorset.

VISIT TO THE HOLY LAND, EGYPT, AND ITALY

[Illustration 1. Frontispiece:--JERUSALEM. ill1.jpg]

By Madame Ida Pfeiffer.

Translated from the German by H. W. Dulcken.

[Illustration 2. Title-page:--NAZARETH. ill2.jpg]

PREFACE BY THE VIENNA PUBLISHER

For two centuries the princes and nations of the West were accustomed to wander towards the land of the morning. In vain was the noblest blood poured forth in streams in the effort to wrest the country of our heavenly Teacher from the grasp of the infidel; and though the Christian Europe of the present day forbears to renew a struggle which, considering the strength that has been gradually increasing for the last six hundred years, might prove an easy one, we cannot wonder that millions of the votaries of Christianity should cherish an earnest longing to wander in the paths the Redeemer has trod, and to view with their own eyes the traces of the Saviour's progress from the cradle to the grave.

In the generality of cases, however, the hardships, dangers, and difficulties of such a journey were sufficient to overthrow the bravest resolution; and thus the wishes of the majority remained unfulfilled.

Few _men_ were found to possess the degree of strength and endurance requisite for the carrying out of such an undertaking; but that a delicate lady of the higher classes, a native of Vienna, should have the heroism to do what thousands of men failed to achieve, seemed almost incredible.

In her earliest youth she earnestly desired to perform this journey; descriptions of the Holy Land were perused by her with peculiar interest, and a book of Eastern travel had more charms for her than the most glowing accounts of Paris or London.

It was not, however, until our Authoress had reached a riper age, and had finished the education of her sons, that she succeeded in carrying into effect the ardent aspiration of her youth.

On the 2d of March, 1842, she commenced her journey alone, without companions, but fully prepared to bear every ill, to bid defiance to every danger, and to combat every difficulty. That this undertaking should have succeeded may almost be looked upon as a wonder.

Far from desiring publicity, she merely kept a diary, in order to retain the recollections of her tour during her later life, and to impart to her nearest relatives the story of her fortunes. Every evening, though often greatly exhausted with heat, thirst, and the hardships of travel, she never failed to make notes in pencil of the occurrences of the day, frequently using a sand-mound or the back of a camel as a table, while the other members of the caravan lay stretched around her, completely tired out.


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