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regret,” said he, “I learnt, after your departure yesterday, that the mound in which you are digging had been used as a burying-ground by Mussulmans, and was covered with their graves; now you are aware that by the law it is forbidden to disturb a tomb, and the Cadi and Mufti have already made representations to me on the subject.” “In the first place," replied I, “ being pretty well acquainted with the mound, I can state that no graves have been disturbed; in the second, after the wise and firm 'politica' which your Excellency exhibited at Siwas, gravestones would present no difficulty. Please God, the Cadi and Mufti have profited by the lesson which your Excellency gave to the ill-mannered Ulema of that city.” “In Siwas,” returned he, immediately understanding my meaning, “I had Mussulmans to deal with, and there was tanzimat*, but here we have only Kurds and Arabs, and Wallah! they are beasts. No, I cannot allow you to proceed; you are my dearest and most intimate friend; if anything happens to you, what grief should I not suffer; your life is more valuable than old stones; besides, the responsibility would fall upon my head.” Finding that the Pasha had resolved to interrupt my proceedings, I pretended to acquiesce in his answer, and requested that a Cawass of his own might be sent with me to Nimroud, as I wished to draw the sculptures and copy the inscriptions which had already been uncovered. To this he consented, and ordered an officer to accompany me.
On my return to Selamiyah there was little difficulty in inducing the Pasha's Cawass to permit a few workmen to guard the sculptures during the day; and as Daoud Agha considered that this functionary's presence relieved him from any further responsibility, he no longer interfered with me. Wishing to ascertain the existence of the graves, and also to draw one of the bas-reliefs, which had been uncovered, I rode to the ruins on the following morning, accompanied by the
* The reformed system, introduced into most provinces of Turkey, had not yet been extended to Mosul and Baghdad.
Hytas and their chief, who were going their usual rounds in search of plundering Arabs. Daoud Agha confessed to me on our way that he had received orders to make graves on the mound, and that his troops had been employed for two nights in bringing stones from distant villages for that purpose.” “We have destroyed more real tombs of the true Believers,” said he, “in making sham ones, than you could have defiled between the Zab and Selamiyah. We have killed our horses and ourselves in carrying those accursed stones.” A steady rain setting in, I left the horsemen, and returned to the village. In the evening Daoud Agha brought back with him a prisoner and two of his followers severely wounded. He had fallen in with a party of horsemen under Sheikh Abd-ur-rahman of the Abou-Salman Arabs, whose object in crossing the Zab had been to plunder me as I worked at the mound. After a short engagement, the Arabs were compelled to recross the river. I continued to employ a few men to open trenches by way of experiment, and was not long in finding other sculptures. Near the western edge of the mound were discovered the lower part of several colossal figures, at the foot of the S. E. corner a crouching lion, rudely carved in black basalt, and in the centre a pair of gigantic winged bulls, the head and half of the wings of which had been destroyed. On the backs of the slabs, on which the bulls were sculptured in high relief, were inscriptions in the arrow-headed character. The remains of two small winged lions forming the entrance into a chamber, and a basrelief nine feet in height, representing a human figure raising the right hand, and carrying a branch with three flowers resembling the poppy, in the left, were also uncovered. But these afforded no clue to the nature of the buildings, of which only detached and unconnected walls had as yet been exposed. The experiment had now been fairly made; there was no longer any doubt of the existence not only of sculptures and inscriptions, but even of large edifices in the interior of the mound of Nimroud. I lost no time, therefore, in acquainting Sir Stratford Canning with my discovery, and in urging the necessity of a Firman, or order from the Porte, which would prevent any future interference on the part of the authorities, or the inhabitants of the country. It was now nearly Christmas, and as it was desirable to remove from the mound the tombs, which had been made by the Pasha's orders, and others, more genuine, which had since been found, I came to an understanding on the subject with Daoud Agha. I covered over the sculptures brought to light, and withdrew altogether from Nimroud, leaving an agent at Selamiyah. On entering Mosul on the morning of the 18th of December, I found the whole population in a ferment of joy. A Tatar had that morning brought from Constantinople the welcome news that the Porte, at length alive to the wretched condition of the province, and to the misery of the inhabitants, had disgraced the governor, and had named Ismail Pasha, a young Major-General of the new school, to carry on affairs until Hafiz Pasha, who had been appointed to succeed Keritli Oglu, could reach his government. Ismail Pasha, who had been for some time in command of the troops at Diarbekir, had gained a great reputation for justice amongst the Mussulmans, and for tolerance amongst the Christians. Consequently his appointment had given much satisfaction to the people of Mosul, who were prepared to receive him with a demonstration. However, he slipped into the town during the night, some time before he had been expected. On the following morning a change had taken place at the Palace, and Mohammed Pasha, with his followers, were reduced to extremities. The dragoman of the Consulate, who had business to transact with the late Governor, found him sitting in a dilapidated chamber, through which the rain penetrated without hindrance. “Thus it is,” said he, “with God's creatures. D
* In Arabia, the graves are merely marked by large stones placed upright at the head and feet, and in a heap over the body.
Yesterday all those dogs werc kissing my feet; to-day every one, and everything, falls upon me, even the rain!”
Meanwhile the state of the country rendering the continuation of my researches at Nimroud almost impossible, I determined to proceed to Baghdad, to make arrangements for the removal of the sculptures at a future period.
RETURN TO MOSUL. — ISMAIL PASHA. CHANGE IN THE STATE OF THE
COUNTRY. - RETURN TO NIMROUD, -THE RUINS IN SPRING. -EXCAVATIONS RESUMED. —FURTHER DISCOVERIES. — NEW INTERRUPTIONS. SHEIKH ABD-UR-RAHMAN AND THE ABOU-SALMAN ARABS. — FRESH BASRELIEFS IN THE NORTH-WEST CORNER.-DISCOVERY OF THE PRINCIPAL PALACE. ENTIRE BAS-RELIEFS. - DISCOVERY OF THE COLOSSAL LIONS.
SURPRISE OF THE ARABS. - SENSATION AT MOSUL, AND CONDUCT OF THE PASHA AND CADI. EXCAVATIONS STOPPED. — FURTHER DISCOVERIES. — DESCRIPTION OF THE HUMAN-HEADED LIONS. REFLECTIONS ON THEIR ANTIQUITY AND OBJECT. THE JEBOUR ARABS. — THEIR
UD IN MARCH. DESCRIPTION OF THE PLAIN AT SUNSET. — THE TUNNEL OF NEGOOB.-AN ASSYRIAN INSCRIPTION.
On my return to Mosul in the beginning of January, I found Ismail Pasha installed in the government. He received me with courtesy, offered no opposition to the continuation of my researches at Nimroud, and directed the irregular troops stationed at Selamiyah to afford me every assistance and protection. The change since my departure had been as sudden as great. A few conciliatory acts on the part of the new Governor, an order from the Porte for an inquiry into the sums unjustly levied by the late Pasha, with a view to their repayment, and a promise of a diminution of taxes, had so far encouraged those who had fled to the mountains and the desert, that the inhabitants of the villages were slowly returning to their homes; and even the Arab tribes, whose pasture grounds are in the districts of Mosul, were again pitching their tents on the banks of the Tigris.
During my absence my agents had not been inactive. Several trenches had been opened in the great mound of Baasheikha; and fragments of sculpture and inscriptions, with entire pottery and inscribed bricks, had been discovered there. At Karamles a platform of brickwork had been uncovered,