Page images
PDF
EPUB

him who died that ye might be elevated to the rank of angels! call ye this war? Is this the glory that is made to warm the hearts of even silly and confiding women? Is the peace of families to be destroyed to gratify your wicked lust for conquest; and is life to be taken in vain, in order that you may boast of the foul deed in ye be your wicked revels! Fall back then, ye British soldiers! if worthy of that name, and give passage to a woman; and remember that the first shot that is fired, will be buried in her bosom!"

"The men, thus enjoined, shrunk before her commanding mein, and a way was made for her exit through that very door which Griffith had, in vain, solicited might be cleared for himself and party. But Alice, instead of advancing, appeared to have suddenly lost the use of those faculties which had already effected so much. Her figure seemed rooted to the spot where she had spoken, and her eyes were fixed in a settled gaze as if dwelling on some horrid object. While she yet stood in this attitude of unconscious helplessness, the door-way became again darkened, and the figure of the Pilot was seen on its threshold, clad, as usual, in the humble vestments of his profession, but heavily armed with the weapons of naval war. For an instant, he stood a silent spectator of the scene; and then advanced calmly, but with searching eyes, into the centre of the apartment."

In proportion to the lively interest with which we observe the progress of this writer, is our regret that he should have restricted the enjoyment of this production, by the undue admixture of maritime occurrences, detailed in the peculiar jargon of seamen. To such persons, all the circumstances to which we allude and the language in which they are described, present nothing new. They are, moreover, not precisely that description of readers, whose approbation, a man of letters should be ambitious to obtain. Mr. Cooper has given sufficient evidence that he has the means of enriching our native stock of literature in this department, and we cordially wish that he may go on rejoicing in his course.

The following is a monkish composition, the Latin not being classical. The word Tumba is found in no Roman author. The Epitaph runs thus

Hic jacet, in tumba,
Rosamundi, non Rosamunda,
Non redolet, sed olet,
Que redolere solet.

The literal translation is: "Here lies in the Tomb, the rose of the world not a fragrant rose; for she who used to exhale perfume, now has a disgusting odour." In English we might say:

Within this dark and silent tomb repose

The bones of her once styled the world's fair rose;
How chang'd alas, is Rosamond the fair
Whose fragrance once perfumed the ambient air.

A SHORT ACCOUNT OF THE REVOLUTION OF THE GREEKS.

We had made some progress in a translation, from the Annuaire Universelle, of a very animated account of the present struggle of the Greeks, when we met with the following narrative, in the Boston Daily Advertizer; which, being compiled from later information, is more satisfactory. In laying it before our readers we cannot but advert to the cordial manner in which the cause of these suffering people has been espoused by the citizens of this country. In town-meetings, at our seminaries of learning, and even before the holy altars, our sympathy has been loudly and feelingly expressed. It is peculiarly incumbent upon us to cherish such sentiments, since it is for the very principles which are the foundation of our government that the Greeks are contending. The ancestors of this enslaved race, when their household fires had been extinguished by the Persian invasion, decreed that they could only be rekindled from the altar of Apollo. Would it be too presumptuous in us to hazard the prediction, at a period, when there is not a nation left in Europe, to assert the cause of freedom,-that our country is destined to become the Delphos which shall supply the sacred flame?

In the year 1814, an association for the promotion of knowledge and of general improvement in Greece was established at Vienna. To this association many distinguished statesmen of western Europe, many of the literati, particularly in Germany, and most of the affluent merchants and other respectable characters in Greece itself, subscribed and contributed. No political object was avowed. In general none probably was contemplated. Still, however, the views of the most ardent associates doubtless extended to the political regeneration of Greece. The effervescence, which existed in Spain, France, Italy, and Germany, after the overthrow of Napoleon, and the general call for political improvement in those countries, could not but have had an effect in Greece, from which country about one hundred young men annually resort to the Universities of Western Europe.

In the year 1820, the war of the Porte against Ali, the powerful and veteran Pacha of Yanina, broke out. In this war the Greeks took no part, and Ali, when driven by the Turkish armies into his strong hold of the lake of Yanina, took with him more than one hundred of the most respectable Greeks in his dominions, as hostages for the quiet of the rest. By the end of the year 1820, Ali's armies had either deserted him or been driven from the field, and he was closely besieged by the Turkish Pacha, who had been sent against him. In this state of things, in the beginning of 1821, the Greek Hospodar of Wallachia died. The two Turkish provinces, Wallachia and Moldavia, bordering on Austria and Russia, and wholly inhabited by Christians of the Greek faith, (though not of the Greek nation,) are governed by Greek princes called Hospodars, nominated by the Porte. This govern

ment is guaranteed to these two provinces by several treaties between the Porte and Russia. On the death of the Greek Hospodar of Wallachia, in January, 1821, before a new one could be appointed at Constantinople, Theodore, a native Wallachian, gathered together sixty or seventy adventurers, principally Albanians-a kind of Turkish Swiss found in every part of the empire-and with these marched out of Bucharest, the capital of Wallachia, calling on the inhabitants to revolt and procure the redress of their grievances. It has been said that this revolt was effected by the gold and the emissaries of Ali Pacha. Theodore in a short time collected about fifteen thousand men, without plan or organization, who demanded a redress of the grievances which they suffered under their Greek governors. The Porte received the news of the revolt with little concern, and despatched officers with orders to suppress it, as one of those hasty mutinies, which are frequently happening in all parts of Turkey.

Meantime, however, a more serious event took place in the adjoining province of Moldavia. On the seventh of March, 1821, a proclamation was found pasted up in all the streets of Jassy, the capital of Moldavia, signed by Prince Alexander Ypsilanti, calling upon the inhabitants to assert their liberty, assuring them that Prince Michael Suzzo, the Hospodar of Moldavia, was in their cause, and intimating that the co-operation of Russia might be hoped.-Alexander Ypsilanti is of one of the oldest families of Greece; his father was Hospodar of Wallachia, and escaped to Russia, his life being threatened by the Porte; Alexander had been educated in a Russian military school, served and lost an arm in the Russian army, and at this moment enjoyed the rank of Major General, in the Russian service. He had been an active member of the association alluded to above, and stood in correspondence with the men of most influence in all parts of Greece. It was true that Prince Suzzo was in the secret of this revolt, although, in the first instance, it was against himself. Ypsilanti's proclamation had a powerful effect. The people rose and crowded to his standard, and he was soon in full march towards Wallachia. On the way, he was joined by another strong band, who had revolted at the same time at Galaez, on the Danube, and it may justly be called singular that these three simultaneous insurrections were wholly without concert.

The news of these events produced a lively excitement at Odessa, of which a great part of the inhabitants are Greek. The weal thy subscribed in the most liberal manner, and the young and adventurous crowded to the banner of Ypsilanti, which was emblazoned, like that of Constantine, with the Christian cross, and the motto "in this thou shalt conquer." Ypsilanti lost no time in sending an address to the Russian emperor, then at Laybach; and the emperor lost as little time in ordering Ypsilanti's name to be erased from the lists of the Russian army, and directing the Rus

sian consul at Jassy to denounce the revolutionary proceedings in the name of the emperor. Information of these measures was also given to the Porte, by the baron Strogonoff, the Russian minister at Constantinople. The Porte not wholly satisfied, ordered a search of all vessels passing to or from the Black Sea; an order, at which baron Strogonoff took umbrage.

By this time the Porte was alarmed at the progress of the revolt. The lives of the Greeks at Constantinople were threatened. Suzzo was outlawed as a traitor, and the Greek patriarch, by order of the Porte, excommunicated him and all the Moldavian rebels. Meantime, however, the flame was spreading. Alexander Ypsilanti had his agents in all the provinces of Greece, who received and propagated intelligence of the events in the two northeastern provinces. Preparations had been making all winter in the mountains of the Morea, and arms were collected and councils held by Peter Mavromichalis, the Bey of the Mainotes, and his brave associates. At the end of March they had eight thousand men ready to throw off the yoke. The news from Moldavia put them in motion, and the Turks were driven to the fortresses in all the southern parts of the Morea. The thirtieth of March, Germanus, archbishop of Patras, raised the standard of the cross, collected the peasantry, and after a skirmishing warfare and many mutual excesses drove the Turks into the citadel of Patras. On the same day, the Messenian senate of Calamata was convened; proclamations were issued, addressed to the Greeks: another to the Turks, promising them protection, on condition of their not resisting; and others to foreign nations. Among the last a proclamation was addressed, by this body, in the month of May, to the citizens of the United States, of which the original was published in a late Number of the North American Review.

It was highly favourable to the cause of the patriots that Churshid, Pacha of the Morea, the ablest Turkish commander who has appeared in this war, was absent, besieging Ali Pacha at Yanina. On hearing of the revolt in the Morea, he detached his lieutenant, Jussuf Selim, with a considerable force. Jussuf landed at Patras, pillaged the city, burned eight hundred houses, and massacred the Greeks who fell into his hands, without distinction of age or sex. This severity produced a happy effect: it roused many, who had hitherto taken no part. The whole province was in arms. Gregory, a monk, ranged the country with a cross in his hand, and took post, with several thousand followers, at the Isthmus of Corinth: and in a few days Attica, Livadia, Acarnania, and Thessaly were in open revolt. The features of insurrection were every where the same. After some bloody skirmishes, the Turks were every where driven to the walled towns, and often to the castles in the towns. Nor were the islands behind the continent. Hydra, Spezzia, and Ipsara, the three islands where the navigation of Greece centres, formed their senate, fitted out in a short time one

hundred and eighty privateers, and swept the Turkish trade from the Archipelago. The single house of Conturioty fitted out thirty small cruisers. Bolbina, a lady whose husband had been put to death by the Turks, fitted out, at her own expense, three cruisers, and commanded the little squadron in person. These fleets raised all the islands; kept up a communication between them; blockaded the ports where the Turks were fortified, and gave life to the patriot cause, in every quarter.

While the revolution was thus spreading in Greece, it was almost wholly crushed in Wallachia and Moldavia. When the resolutions of the emperor of Russia were made known by the Russian consul at Jassy, a counter revolution was effected, and prince Suzzo fled from the province. Ypsilanti marched to Bucharest, but could come to no understanding with Theodore, whose movement had been purely accidental, and who had no sympathy with the Greeks. After four days' conference, they separated. Turkish armies entered Wallachia; Theodore tried to make terms with one of the Pachas. His overtures were rejected, and he then, deserted by most of his followers, fled to Ypsilanti. Ypsilanti put him under arrest, tried him by court-martial, and shot him.-These events brought dissentions into his way, and prepared for an inauspicious result.-Meantime, the rage of the Turks at Constantinople was raised to the highest, by the news which poured in from all quarters. The Grand Vizier was displaced for want of energy, and Benderli-Ali-Pacha, then in Asia, was called to the post. Benderli, with a host of Asiatic Turks, put himself in motion; on the twenty-first of April he entered Constantinople. The next day was Easter, the great festival of the Greek church; and on that day, the patriarch Gregory was torn from the altar, where he was officiating, and hung at the door of the patriarchal palace. His crime was " having known and not having suppressed the rebellion in the Morea." His body was dragged about the streets by Jews, and thrown into the Bosphorus. On the same day, the bishop of Ephesus and two other prelates, and some of the most considerable Greeks, were hung from the windows of their houses. In ten days the new Grand Vizier was deposed and banished; but by the clamour of the populace his banishment was commuted into decapitation. A deputation of three Janissaries was admitted to a permanent seat in the divan, and the whole male population of the Ottoman empire called upon, by solemn proclamation of the sultan, "to relinquish the life of the cities, to mount, to resume the life of the field, the life of their ancestors."

Witnessing the march of troops to Wallachia and Moldavia, contrary to the stipulations of the treaties between Russia and the Porte; the indiscriminate slaughter of Christians; the destruction of churches, and the murder of the patriarch, the Russian minister remonstrated warmly with the Porte, and demanded satisfaction. The replies of the Reis Effendi were unsatisfactory;

« PreviousContinue »