Titel: First English reading book: Engelsch leesboek voor instituten, gymnasiën en hoogere burgerscholen: met Nederlandsche woordenlijst
Auteur: Herrig, Ludwig
Uitgave: Arnhem: J. Voltelen, 1869 *
Auteursrechten: Zie auteursrechten
Citeerinstructie: Bijzondere Collecties van de Universiteit van Amsterdam, UBM: IWO 513 H 21
Onderwerp: Taal- en letterkunde naar afzonderlijke talen: Engelse taalkunde
Trefwoord: Leesvaardigheid, Engels, Leermiddelen (vorm)
* jaar van uitgave niet op de gebruikelijke wijze verkregen, mogelijk betreft het een schatting
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   First English reading book: Engelsch leesboek voor instituten, gymnasiën en hoogere burgerscholen: met Nederlandsche woordenlijst
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The modern city of Jerusalem may be
roughly stated to be about a mile in length,
and half a mile in breadth. Its population
is estimated at 20,000, of which 5000 are
Mussulmans, 5000 Christians, and 10,000 Jews.
It stands at the south end of a large plain
that extends northwards toward Samaria; but
it immediately occupies two small hills, having
valleys or ravines on the other three sides;
which, to the east and the south, are very
deep. That on the east is the valley of
Jehoshaphat; that on the south is called
the valley of Siloam, and (erroneously) of
Gehinnon; that on the west, which is not
so deep, the valley of Rephaim. On the
east, Jerusalem is commanded by the Mount
of Olives; on the south, by what the Chris-
tians absurdly denominate the Hill of Of-
fence and the Hill of Evil Council; on the
west, by a low rocky flat, called Mount
Gihon, which rises towards the north to a
commanding elevation; on the north-west,
Scopo, where Titus encamped, is also higher
ground than that on which Jerusalem stands:
so that the Scripture representation of Je-
rusalem, as guarded by mountains, literally
answers to its topographical situation; —
'As the mountains are round about Jerusa-
lem, so the Lord is round about his people,
from henceforth, even for ever.*
'When seen,' says Chateaubriand, 'from
the Mount of Olives, Jerusalem presents
an inclined plane, descending from west to
east. An embattled wall, fortified with
towers and a Gothic castle, encompasses
the city all round; excluding, however, part
of Mount Sion, which it formerly enclosed.
In the western quarter, and in the centre
of the city, the houses stand very close;
but, in the eastern part, along the brook
Kedron, you perceive vacant spaces; among
the rest, that which surrounds the mosque
erected on the ruins of the temple. The
houses of Jerusalem are heavy square
masses, very low, without chimneys or
windows; they have flat terraces or domes
on the top, and look like prisons or se-
pulchres. The whole would appear to the
eye one uninterrupted level, did not the
steeples of the churches, the minarets of
the mosques, the summits of a few cy-
presses, and the clumps of nopals, break
the uniformity of the plan. On beholding
these stone buildings, encompassed by a
stony country, you are ready to inquire if
they are not the confused monuments ofa
cemetery in the midst of a desert.
'Enter the city, but nothing will you
there find to make amends for the dulness
of its exterior. You lose yourself among
narrow, unpaved streets, here going up hill,
there down, and you walk among clouds of
dust or loose stones. Canvass stretched from
house to house increases the gloom of this
labyrinth. A few paltry shops expose
nothing but wretchedness to view, and even
these are frequently shut, from apprehension
of the passage of a cadi. Not a creature
is to be seen in the streets, not a creature
at the gates, except now and then a peasant
gliding through the gloom, concealing under
his garments the fruits of his labour, lest
he should be robbed of his hard earnings
by the rapacious soldier. Aside, in a cor-
ner, the Arab butcher is slaughtering some
animal, suspended by the legs from a wall
in ruins: from his haggard and ferocious
look, and his bloody hands, you would sup-
pose that he had been cutting the throat
of a fellow-creature rather than killing a
lamb. The only noise heard from time to
time in the city, is the galloping of the
steed of the desert: it is the janissary who
brings the head of the Bedouin, or who
returns from plundering the unhappy Fellah.*
The Jerusalem of sacred history is no
more. Not a vestige remains of the capital
of David and Solomon; not a monument
of Jewish times is standing. The very
course of the walls is changed, and the
boundaries of the ancient city are become
doubtful. The monks pretend to show the
sites of the sacred places; but neither Cal-
vary, nor the Holy Sepulchre, much less
the Dolorous Way, the House of Caiaphas,
&c., have the slightest pretensions to even
a probable identity with the real places to
which the tradition refers. A few gardens
still remain on the sloping base of Mount
Zion, watered from the pool of Siloam; the
gardens of Gethsemane are still in a sort
of ruined cultivation; the Mount of Olives
still retains a languishing verdure, and nour-
ishes a few of those trees from which it
derives its name; but all round about Je-
rusalem the general aspect is blighted and
barren; the grass is withered; the bare
rock looks through the scanty sward; and
the grain itself, like the staring progeny of
famine, seems in doubt whether to come to
maturity, or die in the ear. The vine that
was brought from Egypt is cut off from
the midst of the land; the vineyards are
wasted; the hedges are taken away; and
the graves of the ancient dead are open
and tenantless.
To conceive of its ancient aspect, we
must endeavour to shut our eyes to the
domes, and minarets, and castellated towers,
which now revolt every pleasing and sacred