Sooner or later I went up the hill towards Yildiz to see the Selamlik. That morning the sultan was going to wish within the mosque of wooden which Abdul Hamid constructed near the mysterious, walled-in quarter of palaces, harems, kiosks, gardens, barracks, and parks which he made his jail. From the Bosporus you’ll be able to see it extending from the hilltop virtually to the ocean, a fantastic property, outdoors the town, but dominating it, with dense groves of timber wherein.wild animals had been stored, with open areas, with solitary buildings and features of roofs, and the cupola of the mosque ot the troopers. All about it are the excessive partitions which a coward raised as much as shield him and his concern. The mosque is beneath the nice entrance- gates on a steep hillside past the partitions. A big fashionable home, white, with inexperienced shutters, wherein Abdul Hamid used to grant audiences and, I consider, to provide banquets, appears to be like down on it. From the higher home windows of this dwelling the Turks say the ex-sultan typically stared at his metropolis via highly effective glasses.
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The mosque isn’t giant
The mosque isn’t giant. It’s yellow and white, with a minaret of plaster on the aspect subsequent the ocean, and a graveled courtyard surrounded by inexperienced iron railings and planted with a number of timber. On the aspect subsequent to Yildiz is a steep financial institution. A highway runs up the hill to the left of the mosque as you face Yildiz, and one other hidden highway descends from the gates and provides entry to the’ courtyard behind the mosque. The sultan has subsequently a selection of two routes, and no person appears to know beforehand which approach he’ll come. There have been only a few vacationers in Constan-tinople after I was there. Individuals had been afraid of conflict, and earlier than I left the Orient specific had ceased to run. However I discovered awaiting the padishah many Indian pilgrims, a big troop of pilgrims from Trebizond who had been on their solution to Mecca, a number of Persians sporting black toques, and a superb many Turks. These had been within the courtyard near the mosque, the place I used to be allowed to face by the arisrtocratic younger chief of police, who wore a woolly, grey, fez-shaped cap. Outdoors the railings stood a dense crowcj of veiled girls.
Quickly after I arrived a squadron of the body-guard rode up from the town, carrying red-and-green pen- , nons on lengthy staffs, and halted earlier than the gates of the palace. And virtually on the similar second the palace musicians, in dark-blue, pink, and gold, sporting quick swords, and carrying shining brass devices, marched into the inclosure. They stood nonetheless, then dropped their devices on the bottom, moved away, and sat down on the financial institution, lolling in straightforward attitudes. Time slipped by, and essential folks strolled in, officers, courtroom officers, attendants.