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knowing the levels, had approached so nearly
to the surface that there was but a mere
crust, between them and the bakehouse

What was to be done? The danger was
imminentthe remedy must be prompt and
decisive. A narrow arm of the Danube ran
within a hundred yards of the place: pick
and spade were vigorously plied, and in a
short time a canal was cut between the river
and the bakery. Little knew the Turks of
the cold water that could then at any time be
thrown upon their undertaking. All was still.
The Viennese say that the hostile troops
already filled the mine, armed to the teeth, and
awaiting only a concerted signal to tell them
that a proposed midnight attack on the
walls had diverted the attention of the citizens.
Then they were to rush up out of the earth
and surprise the town. But the besieged,
forewarned and forearmed, suddenly threw the
flood-gates open and broke a way for the
water through the new canal under the
bakehouse floor; down it went bubbling, hissing,
and gurgling into the dark cavern, where it
swept the Mussulmans before it, and destroyed
them to a man.

This was the origin of the Turks' Cellar;
and although the title is perhaps unjustly
appropriated by the winehouse I have
mentioned, yet there is no doubt that the tale is
true, and that the house at any rate is near
the spot from which its name is taken. Grave
citizens even believe that the underground
passage still exists, walled and roofed over
with stone, and that it leads directly to the
Turks' camp, at the foot of the Leopoldsberg.
They even know the size of it, namely, that
it is of such dimensions as to admit the
marching through it of six men abreast. Of
this I know nothing; but I know from the
testimony of a venerable old ladywho is
not the oldest in Viennathat the baker's
apprentices were formerly allowed special
privileges in consideration of the service
once rendered by some of their body to the
state. Indeed, the procession of the bakers,
on every returning anniversary of the swamping
of the Turks, when they marched horse and
foot from the Freiung, with banners, emblems,
and music, through the heart of the city to the
grass-grown camp outside the city walls, was
one of the spectacles that made the deepest
impression on this chatty old lady in her

The Turks' Cellar is still famous. It is
noted now, not for its bread or its canal-
water, but for its white-wine, its baked veal,
and its savoury chickens. Descend into its
depths (for it is truly a cellar and nothing
else) late in the evening, when citizens have
time and money at their disposal, and you
find it full of jolly company. As well as the
tobacco-smoke will permit you to see what the
place resembles, you would say that it is like
nothing so much as the after cabin of a
Gravesend steamer on a summer Sunday
afternoon. There is just such a row of tables
on each side; just such a low roof; just such a
thick palpable air, uncertain light, and noisy,
steamy crowd of occupants. The place is
intolerable in itself, but fall-to upon the
steaming block of baked veal which is set
before you; clear your throat of the tobacco-
smoke by mighty draughts of the pale yellow
wine which is its proper accompaniment;
finally, fill a deep-bowled meerschaum with
Three Kings tobacco, creating for yourself
your own private and exclusive atmosphere,
and you begin to feel the situation. The
temperature of mine host's cellar aids
imagination greatly in recalling the idea of
the old bakehouse, and there comes over
you, after a while, a sense of stifling that
mixes with the nightmare usually constituting
in this place an after-supper nap. In the
waking lethargy that succeeds, you feel as
if jostled in dark vaults by a mob of
frantic Turks, labouring heavily to get breath,
and sucking in foul water for air.

Possibly when fully awakened you begin to
consider that the Turks' Cellar is not the most
healthful place of recreation to be in; and,
cleaving the dense smoke, you ascend into
sunlight. Perhaps you stroll to some place
where the air is better, but which may
still have a story quite as exciting as
the catastrophe of the imperial bakehouse:
perhaps to Bertholdsdorf; a pretty little
market town with a tall-steepled church, and
a half ruined battlement, situated on the hill
slope about six miles to the south of Vienna.
It forms a pretty summer day's ramble. Its
chronicler is the worthy Marktrichter, or
Town-justice, Jacob Trinksgeld; and his
unvarnished story, freely translated, runs

"When the Turkish army, two hundred
thousand strong without their allies, raised
the siege of Raab, the retreating host of rebels
and Tartars were sent to overrun the whole
of Austria below the Enns on this side of the
Danube, and to waste it with fire and sword.
This was done. On the ninth of July,
detached troops of Spahis and Tartars appeared
before the walls of Bertholdsdorf, but were
beaten back by our armed citizens. These
attacks were repeated on the tenth and twelfth,
and also repulsed; but as at this time the
enemy met with a determined resistance from
the city of Vienna, which they had invested,
they gathered in increased force about our
devoted town, and on the fifteenth of July
attacked us with such fury on every side, that,
seeing it was no longer possible to hold out
against them, partly from their great
numbers, and partly from our failing of powder;
and moreover, seeing that they had already
set fire to the town in several places, we were
compelled to seek shelter with our goods and
chattels in the church and fortress, neither of
which were as yet touched by the flames.

"On the sixteenth, the town itself being then
in ashes, there came a soldier dressed in the

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