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ladies slopping along, children, water-carriers
with triangular water-skins on their backs,
Turkish policemen, soldiers, oil-carriers, hammals
with looped ropes hanging over their
galled shoulders, and their knots strung like
reticules on their swollen arms, Armenians
with large fleshy noses and ox eyes, little harlequin
bundles of children, Franks sturdy and rapid
elbowing the crowd, and itinerant vendors of all
kinds, form but a small part of the human congeries.

The Drug bazaar is my favourite, because it
is so Oriental and so mysterious. Here the
plaited baskets piled with roots and spices,
the broad measures full of yellow-brown henna
smoothed at the top to a cone and crossed
at the top with two clean boxwood spoons,
are evidently quite of another region than
your own. There are little black lozenges
of pastilles, covered with gilt, and intended to
beatify the tobacco of your chibouk. The
measures and baskets edged with coloured paper
(purple to the brown henna, for instance), are
ranged in tiers of different sizes, like the nosegays
in Covent-garden, or the roses at a flower-
stand; and rather higher up than usual among
these, sits the Turkish "lord of drugs," still as
death, only the dark waver of his eye telling
you that it is not a stuffed figure guarding the
roots and gums. Here are poisons enough to
last even a Borgia a lifetime; but I came for
perfumes and can find none. Sulphur they have,
and senna they have, but oil of jasmine, no.

So again I break out into the sunshine, and
make, led by two wrangling Jews, for some yet
untrodden district of the bazaars, and I find it
in the old-clothes district. This bazaar has an
impoverished look about even its buyers and
sellersnay, its very walls and windows are
harmoniously suitable to the commodities
exposed for sale. Here is a place for Sartor
Resartus to moralise in, over the disguises of
the pure Adam. The turban, being a home-made
article composed of two partsthe eternal fez,
or inner kernel, and the outer striped or many-
coloured wrapperis never exposed for sale in
the East, the folding being renewed daily, and
requiring the knowledge of a lifetime to give it
the careless grace that a Mussulman dandy gives
it. As for the street vagabond, his turban is
but a rag round a sort of sallow brown night-
cap, and he slips it off and rebinds it twenty
times a day, just as a London costermonger per-
petually twirls his "love lock" with his dirty
finger. No; no turbans, cream-coloured or leaf-
green, or yellow or blue, are here, but great dirty
tapestries of greasy robes and dressing-gowns of
the stage magician kind, and curtains of red
and yellow, and brown Syrian scarfs yards and
yards long and tufted at the end with little fly-
fishing crimson and yellow knotted silks; and
eyeing the dealer and his circle of gossips
suspiciously, stroll ruffianly Greeks, with black
gaiters gartered with crimson, huge ruffling
kilts, and long curved daggers in silver-embossed
sheaths sloping across the waist-belt. And this
defiant weapon is tucked in over a huge pad of
brown leather, which is the Greek's purse and
pistol-holder, though it looks like a small
blacksmith's apron. I sit down on a dealer's counter
on the right-hand side, and have dealings about
some Syrian scarfs and about some skins of
lambs from Astracan, which Rocket wants
to line a travelling-cloak with. They show
me white skins and black skins, fit for an emir
in point of luxury, but, alas! fit for that emir
too in point of price. Showers of Turkish
numerals assail me as I pass out in search of
pastures new.

This time I aim at the Tent bazaar, and
I find it after much trouble; and this word
"trouble" is my cue for describing how it takes
the keenest traveller some weeks before he can
be ever sure of getting straight from Misseri's
Hotel to the central mass of bazaars. It requires
a map-maker's head, and the sagacity of a Columbus,
to find the way between the two points. In
the first place, Turkish streets, except up in
Pera, have no names; they are known, only from
the nearest mosque, fountain, or barracks, so that
you can ask for no special street, and if you do,
the Turk can give you but very generalised
and vague answers. Ten to one it is a Persian
you ask, or an Armenian, or an Arab, or a Crim
Tartar, or an Arnout, and if it be really a Turk,
the miserable creature perhaps does not speak
your Turkish, but some horrible patois and
baragouin of his own, substituted, it seems, on
purpose to spite you. Then the crippling
streets, the thirsty fervid heat, the
perplexed lanes, the dangerous crowds, make
you so irritable, dry, perspiring, and lame,
that you soon get worn to a thread, and have no
courage to do anything but walk on by mere
animal instinct. You know the bazaars are low
down the hill, to the right of St. Sophia and
the Seraglio, and under or to the left of the
Hippodrome. On the wooden bridge you feel
positive that the bazaar is just here. You get in
Stamboul, ascend the river-side steps, turn right
and turn left, then you are confused and uncertain
you disdain to inquireyou push onhesitate
are lost! You look round; a hammal sets
you right for a street; you come to a house
you are sure you remember, because green
tendrils of the vine are trained right across the
way. You look up a turning to the left, and
you see a similar vine at the tobacconist's at the
further corner; you are tired, hungry, helpless;
you are hopeless, but you are not forsaken.
Benjamin and Barsabas have been watching you
for half an hour. They fell into your
unconscious train at the bridge of boats. They then,
unknown to you, hovered about the enemy,
and marked the road he took. As you look
round, you see the smiling rogues, knowing
your helplessness, drinking at a fountain. They
come up and accost you. Two turns, and you
have shot into the needle's eye. Another hour
and you meet Rocket "slanging" a Jew
attendant, yet doing all he suggests, and loading
him with new purchases of shawls, bags,
bracelets, yellow slippers, Janissary pistols, and
Turkey carpets. He is a Queen's messenger,
remember, and half these things will go back in

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