May 2, 2012

Passing through Egypt, 1843

Passing through Egypt, 1843
Fanny Pratt

My darling children, Since our landing in Alexandria our journeys have been so rapid and fatiguing that it was out of my powers to write, but now we are safely on board this vessel and have been refreshed with rest and sleep I hasten to give you an account of our adventures. My last letter was closed as we approached the Egyptian coast. It is unlike any country I have seen; it is very brown and flat. Pompey’s Pillar stands in solitary splendour and can be seen immediately on entering the harbour, also Mohammed Ali’s Palace, manufactories, dockyard and a number of windmills, twelve in one group. The Pasha has a monopoly of the mills. We found difficulty in obtaining rooms as there are but two hotels, but Papa succeeded in doing so. It was the rainy season but we got on shore ere it commenced, passed under the bows of so many fine ships, which have quite the appearance of English vessels.

Passing through Egypt
On entering the hotel we hired a carriage and drove to see Mohammed Ali’s Palace. It was a very large building and splendidly fitted up after the French fashion and full of painting and gilding. The floors are beautiful: each room laid in different patterning in mosaic of cedar, satin, rosewood and others. The walls are covered with damask of warm colours, curtains the same, and each room has a couch from end to end. There is a billiard room, and one small boudoir fitted up for cold weather with an English grateit is called the Fire Room. In spite of having rain to Pompey’s Pillar and Cleopatra’s Needle they are splendid monuments of antiquity and in excellent preservationone of the Needles is still lying prostrate [this is the one that now stands on the Thames Embankment in London], and I fear will be covered with the rubbish that abounds on all sides. Alexandria appears but a city of ruins, with the exception of the portions the Pasha has rebuilt.

We dined at the Table d’Hote with 150 persons I should think and at daybreak next day, started off for the Mahmoudieh Canal. . . . There were three commodious boats provided and a steam tug to tow us. We passed the day very pleasantly though there was little country.

Some travelers came to Egypt across the desertfrom the south, the west, or, like Friar Felix, from the Holy Land and the east.

Related Web Search :
  • Alexandria
  • Alexandria Egypt
  • Weather in Alexandria Egypt
  • Hotels in Alexandria Egypt
  • Alexandria Egypt History
  • Egypt Tourism

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