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HOLY FRAUDS IN JERUSALEM.
Jarred and distracted by these strange rites and ceremonies, that almost confessed imposture, the church of the holy sepulchre, for some time, seems to an Englishman the least sacred spot about Jerusalem. The lies, and the legends, aud the priests, and their quarrels, and their ceremonies keep the holy place out of sight. A man has not leisure to view it, for the brawling of the guardians of the spot. The Roman conquerors, they say, raised up a statue of Venus in this sacred place, intending to destroy all memory of it. I don't think the heathen was as criminal as the Christian is now. To deny and disbelieve is not so bad as to make belief a ground to cheat upon. The liar Ananias perished for that; and yet out of these gates, where angels may have kept watch-out of the tomb of Christ-Christian priests issue with a lie in their mouths. What a place to choose for imposture, good Good! to sully, with brutal struggles for self-aggraudisement, or shameful schemes of gain!
The situation of the tomb (into which, be it authentic or not, no man can enter without a shock of breathless fear, and deep and awful self-humiliation) must have struck all travellers. It stands in the centre of the arched rotunda, which is common to all denomina. tions, and from which branch off the various chapels belonging to each particular sect. In the Coptic chapel I saw one coal black Compt, in his blue robes cowering in the little cabin, surrounded by dingy lamps, barbarous pictures, and cheap, faded trumpery, In the Latin church there was no service going on, only two fathers dusting the mouldy gew-gaws along the brown walls, and laughing to one another. The gorgeous church of the Fire-impostors, hard by, was more fully attended; as what that of their wealthy neighbours, the Armenians. These three main sects hate each other: their quarrels are interminable; each bribes and intrigues with the heathen lords of the seil to the prejudice of his neighbour. Now it is the Latins who interfere, and allow the common church to go to rain, because the Greeks propose to roof it: now the Greeks demolish a monastry on Mount Olivet, and leave the ground to the Turks, rather than allow the Armenians to possess it. On another occasion, the Greeks having mended the Armenian steps, which led to the (so-called) Cave of the Nativity at Bethelem, the latter asked for permission to destroy the work of the Greeks, and did so. And so round this sacred spot, the centre of Christendom, the representatives of the three greatsects worship under one roof,and hate each other!
By far the most comfortable quarters in Jerusalem are those of the Armenians, in their convent of Saint James. Wherever we have been, these Eastern Quakers look grave, and jolly, and sleek. Their convent at Mount Zion is big enough to contain two or three thousand of their faithful; and their church is ornamented by the most rich and hideous gifts ever devised by uncouth piety. Instead of a bell, the fat monks of the convent beat huge noises on a board, and drub the faithful into prayers. I never saw men more lazy and rosy than these reverend fathers, kneeling in their comfortable matted church, or sitting in easy devotion Pictures, images, gilding, tjusel, wax candles, twinkle all over the place; and ten thousand ostriches' eggs (or any lesser number you may allot) dangle from the vaunted ceiling. There were great numbers of people at worship in this gorgeous church; they went on their knees, kissing the walls with much fervour, and paying reverence to the most precious relic of the convent-the chair of St. James, their patron, the first Bishop of Jerusalem.
The chair pointed out with greatest pride in the church of the Latin convent is that shabby red damask one appropriated to the French consul, the representative of the king of that nation, and the protection which it has from time immemorial accorded to the Christians of the Latin rite in Syria. All French writers and travellers speak of this protection with delightful complacency. Consult the French books of travel on the subject, and any Frenchman whom you may meet he says, "La France, monsieur, de tous les temps protege les Chretiens d'Orient;" and the little fellow looks round the church with a sweep of the arm and protects it accordingly.--Titmarsh's Tour from Cornhill to Cairo.
HAIR RESTORED.-IMPORTANT TO THE LADIES. All who study the graces are now referred to another proof, in addition to those which have been afforded in h numbers. and from persons of such undankend
Destruction of Jerusalem,
AS CONNECTED WITH THE
BY THE REVEREND GEORGE WILKINS, A.M.
DOMESTIC CHAPLAIN TO THE EARL OF KINNOULL,
VICAR OF LOWDHAM AND LEXINGTON,
PRINTED AND SOLD BY G. STRETTON; SOLD ALSO BY
LONGMAN, REES, AND CO. LONDON.