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grace to endure his excessive pains with patience and courage. Cardinal Baronius eulogises some letters which the holy Abbé wrote to the Pope Hormisdas, and the book which he presented to the council, an authentic proof of the Catholicity of the holy Abbé.
"After he had piously finished his days, his disciples built a second monastery near the river Orontes. The better to recommend it, they gave it the name of their father; and, after that time, it was called the monastery of St. Maron. The emperor Justinian rebuilt their church, and gave it a handsomer appearance than the former one.
"In the number of hermits of this monastery, there was one named John: who, having distinguished himself among his brethren by his virtues, was elected Abbé; and in honor of their first father, he was surnamed the Abbé Maron. This second Abbé Maron powerfully combatted the heretics and schismatics. He converted many of them; and so successfully defended his nation against schism and heresy which surrounded it on all sides, that it alone in the Levant has remained constantly and universally devoted to the chair of St. Peter.
"The Abbé John Maron, of whom we speak, was the first of his nation who was honored with the title of Patriarch of the Maronites. He received the Patriarchate from the Holy See. His successors, after their election, never omit, up to the present day, to depute a person to the Pope, in order to receive his confirmation and the Palhum."-Lettres Edifiantes et Curieuses, Vol. I. Pp. 109-111.
GREEK ROMAN CATHOLICS.
THE Patriarch of the Greek Roman Catholics resides at the Monastery of Mar Michel, near Antoura.*. They have several monasteries in Mount Lebanon and the adjacent cities; among which a principal one is that of the Deir Mhalles, or San Salvador, near Saide. From this place, many are sent forth to occupy the office of parochial priests, in various towns of Mount Lebanon. They take to themselves the name of Melchites, in the same manner as do the orthodox Greeks of Egypt; but this title at first originated in a political, rather than in a religious, distinction.
period of time. The following extract records the reception of the Romish creed, by some dignitaries of the Greek church in Syria, about the year 1717; an event which could not fail, for the time, to throw a great weight of influence into the papal scale; and it is accordingly announced in terms of high gratulation. It may very properly be introduced, as illustrating this section, concerning the Greek Roman Catholics.
"The moment is at length come, in which the bandage which hid their eyes from the Catholic truth, has fallen. The Patriarch of Alexandria and the Patriarch of Aleppo have been the first to send to our holy father, pope Clement XI., their profession of faith; by which they protest, that they recognise and revere him, as the vicar of Jesus Christ, the head of the church, and the centre of unity to the Catholic faith.
"The Patriarch of Damascus, named Cyril, the most powerful, and consequently the most in credit of all the Patriarchs in the Levant, was the last to give himself up. He had long lived in schism; but as he is a man of spirit and capacity, he could not refrain from praising and defending the Catholic religion. He frequented the company of the missionaries, and was well pleased that they should have the honor of often visiting him. Far from opposing the conversion of his flock, the schismatic Greeks, he favored, as much as possible, their return to the Romish church. He confessed, even, that he was ill pleased with the Greeks of Constantinople, for having formerly separated themselves. These good discourses, expressive of his sentiments, excited in the Catholics a feeling of affection toward him. They desired and asked of God, on his behalf, strength that he might follow the example, which the two Patriarchs of Alexandria and Aleppo had just given him. God has been pleased to hear their prayers; but mark the final method, by which this prelate to the bosom of the Romish church, the Saviour of men has been pleased to recover which had been so often the subject of his eulogium. Schism had held him in slavery-to compel him to quit it, it was necessary for Providence to permit his falling into captivity in the manner which I am about to relate.
the missal of his church to one of his disciples, "The Patriarch, of whom we speak, confided It may be difficult to trace at what exact period chance entered the shop, found this missal. One to take it to a binder. Some Turks, having by members of the Greek church in Syria first became Roman Catholics. The activity of the Rom- of them seized it; and carried it immediately to ish missionaries in the promotion of such converthe Bashaw designing to make his court to him. sions must have been successful, probably, long The Bashaw charmed with the opportunity of before the period alluded to in a letter from which making an exaction from the Patriarch and exwe are about to give an extract. It is a letter torting money from him, did not fail, the next mornwithout date, of considerable length, occupying Bashaw then said to him, in a furious tone, that ing, to send and summon him before him. The 159 pages of the "Lettres Edifiantes et Curieuses,' in the Paris edition of 1780; and is addressed, by duce the Turks and make Franks of them-that he had been informed of what he had done to sethe superior of the Jesuit missions in Syria and he had given to one of them a book of his false Egypt, to the superior-general of the order, giving a very full and minute account of the Syrian mis- religion, to pervert him-and that, for his crime, sions. The letter being without date, and enter- he deserved to be burnt to death: then without ing into a very great variety of matter, has rather waiting for his justification, he committed him to the appearance of being a compilation from the archives of the Jesuit missionaries during a long
* See the following Journal, under date of October 21, 1823.
the prison of blood, so called, because it is appropriated to criminals destined to be condemned to
death. The Bashaw's order of commitment was executed: but the Patriarch, after some day's confinement, having learnt that for three
those Armenians, who have accepted the dignity of the patriarchal title from Rome.
thousand crowns his liberty would be restored to him, caused this sum to be paid to the Bashaw; and the door of the prison was opened to him, on "There are, also, on the large and fertile mounWhit-Monday, 1717. Scarcely was he out of pri- tains of Lebanon, many Christians, (that is, Roson and returned to his house, when he received mish Christians,) who are denominated Greeks, the brief from Pope Clement XI., in which his ho- because formerly they held to the Greek church; liness expressed to him that he had learnt, with a but their ecclesiastics are often less acquainted sensible joy, the protection which he granted to with the Greek, than the Maronites are with the the Catholics, and the proofs which he gave of his Syriac language, which occasions them to perform esteem for the Romish church; that these dispo- their worship principally in the Arabic language. sitions led him to believe that he was not far from They have also their own patriarchs; but to all the kingdom of God; that he conjured him, as his appearance, this has only been the case since the brother in Jesus Christ, to hear the voice of God time of their union with the Romish church; and that called him, and would use the voice of the I imagine that the other united Greeks, who do common pastor to recover his flock to the fold. not live in the territory of the Druses, pay no res'Meditate,' said he to him, 'on those words of pect to this patriarch; but that the Pope simply Jesus Christ-What shall it profit a man, if he gives this title to some ecclesiastic of the country should gain the whole world, and loose his own here, in order that he may say he has a Greek soul? Beware lest the fear of loosing some tran- patriarch in the Levant. In the same manner, sient and temporal advantages occasion you the there is, on Mount Lebanon, an Armenian patriloss of an eternal blessing. Follow, rather, the arch, who is nominated by the Pope, and who, example of the Patriarch of Alexandria and of the probably, has not much to say for himself. In gePatriarch of Aleppo, who have sent us their pro-neral, all these self-called European patriarchs fession of faith conformable to the holy councils. live very tranquilly under the protection of the We expect,' said the pope to him in conclusion. Druses: while the Chaldean patriarch of the pope 'we expect from you such a reply as we desire; at Diarbekir, and other apostate ecclesiastics of and we will then explain to you what you will the east, often suffer great mortifications from the have to do, and the conduct which you should members of their ancient religion, and from the maintain.' bashaws: for there are still to be found, in all the "In terms nearly such as these, the brief was Syrian villages, many Greeks, Armenians, and conceived. The Patriarch received and read it with Jacobites; who adhere to the patriarchs of Conprofound respect. The Lord, at the same time, stantinople, Echmiazin, and Diarbekir, as heads spoke to the heart of the Patriarch; who, touch- of their churches respectively; and who do not ed by this invitation of the father and chief of pas-regard it with an eye of indifference, that the Pope tors, assembled the missionaries, to declare to them, that he had taken the resolution of sending his profession of faith to the holy father in the terms which he desired. The prelate has kept his word. He, last year, deputed three persons, who carried to Rome his profession, together with presents and his pastoral staff, in order to submit it to the vicar of Jesus Christ.
"We doubt not but his holiness would feel a sensible joy at receiving into his communion, and nearly at the same time, the three Patriarchs of the Greek church. God grant that those who succeed them may be the inheritors of their orthodox faith, as well as of their dignity!"-Lettres Edifiantes et Curieuses, Vol. I. pp. 140–144.
ARMENIAN ROMAN CATHOLICS.
should give the title of patriarch to apostates, or that the European monks and their disciples should seduce members from the ancient communions, and thereby foment discords, and utterly ruin many good families. The dissensions of the Christians are always a clear profit to the Turkish government."-Niebuhr, Vol. II. pp. 346, 347.
SYRIAN ROMAN CATHOLICS.
Of this body, which is not numerous in Syria, the Patriarch is generally understood to be Mar Gregorius; the ecclesiastic who visited England in the year 1819, as Archbishop of Jerusalem. Some further account of this body will appear in the following Journal, under the date of October 20, 1823.
LATINS, OR FRANK ROMAN CATHOLICS.
THE residence of the Armenian Roman Catholic Patriarch is at Ybzumar, situate to the north of Beirout: some account of this convent will ap- To this number must be referred the consular pear in the following pages, the author having representatives, French, Spanish, Austrian, &c. visited it during his stay in Mount Lebanon. But of the respective Roman Catholic countries of although the Romanists have used very active Europe. These are, generally, either natives of exertions to bring over the Armenians to their their respective countries; or else, if born in the profession, and have long maintained a consider- Levant, they are of immediate European extracable influence with that people, both in Constan- tion. They are usually-perhaps it might be said, tinople and in other parts of the Turkish empire; invariably-professors of the Roman Catholic faith. yet it is not to be supposed, that the proportion of In this respect the church of Rome has never lost these converts is, in any degree, comparable to sight of its exclusive policy. In contrast to this those who have adhered to the ancient national it may be observed, that Protestant England is church of the Armenians. The following remarks of Niebuhr will convey a very just idea of this fact, in reference both to those Greeks and to
often represented in the Levant, in subordinate consular situations, by Roman Catholic or Greek agents. This is, however, less the case at pre
sent, than it has been at other times. There are also many merchants in Syria from Roman Catholic countries..
The various Roman Catholic families in Syria, as well as in other parts of the Levant, have maintained their influence by intermarriages, in consequence of the contiguity of Roman Catholic countries to the Mediterranean, much more easily than could possibly be the case with the remoter Protestants of England, Holland, and Germany. The number of Latin or Frank Roman Catholic missionaries, whom devotion and the papal system induce to visit Syria and the Holy Land, and who take up their residence either in monasteries or in the principal cities, is never inconsider-ventions, manufactured by Satan: their eyes, their able. It is indeed, at present, far inferior to what it was formerly: but, for the whole of this tract, their number, even at this day, cannot be computed to be less than seventy. The influence of the European friars constantly serves to maintain in the Levant, in which they lead a migratory life, a kind of European or Frank attachment among many Levantine families of western origin or connections.
"You will ask me, how the English and the Dutch conduct themselves. Here, as in Holland and England, they observe neither fast nor abstinence: but it occasions scandal. The people of the country say that they are not Christians; and the Turks themselves regard them as people without religion. They are sometimes affected with these reproaches; and, not being able to bear them, many of them during Lent eat meat only in secret. Those, who act like men of good faith, confess that they are extremely surprised to see, that the religion of all the Christians of the east resembles that which they profess in scarcely any thing.
"This marked difference gives us a great advantage over them. It is,' we say to them, 'it
"The Christians of all the nations of the east do not know what it is to doubt of the reality of the body of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist; and they have so great an attachment to their fasts and their lents, that they would die, rather than fail in them. They have also received from Antioch, their neighbor and their mistress in the faith, the custom of praying for the dead. The invocation of the saints, and in particular of St. George, is, to them, so dear and so precious, that they would rather suffer themselves to be hacked to picces, than renounce it.
"It is impossible to add any thing to the profound veneration, which even the Turks have for Mary. They call her the mother of the great prophet Jesus; and, in this quality, they reverence her to such a degree, as to impale those Jews who dare blaspheme against her. What a strange contrast! Men born in the bosom of Christendom, refuse to Mary honors, which are rendered to her by the most implacable enemies of the Christian name!
"Further the respect of Mohammedans is not limited to the mother of our God: the sepulchre of the Messiah is one of the objects of their pilgrimages of devotion. They regard those who have visited the sepulchres of the two prophets as men of extraordinary piety: and to this double pilgrimage, are attached certain marks of distinction. Such an one is a saint,' they would say: he has been at Jerusalem and Mecca.'
"One of our merchants, who has resided a long time at the Holy City, and has seen, various times, these Turkish pilgrims, related to me that they go upon their knees, that they crawl upon the ground from the gate to the holy sepulchre; but, before entering there, they take off the bandage of their turban: this is with them a mark of ignominy, when done upon compulsion; and a mark of respect, when done voluntarily-that then they prostrate themselves; that they make profound obeisance, and strike their head upon the pavement. This spectacle,' he added, has always edified me, and has sometimes touched me even to tears.' The Grand Signior himself, among all the pompous and magnificent titles which he assumes in the orders which emanate from the throne, prides himself in adopting that of protector and preserver of the Holy City of Jerusalem. It is a consolation, not a little moving, for poor enslaved Christians to see their proud masters do so much honor to the God whom they adore."-Letters Edifiantes et Curieuses. Vol. II. pp. 167-172.
It would be an easy task, were it requisite, to refute the various misrepresentations contained in the preceding extract. The supposed merit of the rigid abstinences, so much extolled, might well be contrasted with the moderate views of the
were taken for the circulation of this book, or what accounts may exist of its reception in the countries where Arabic is spoken. It seems, however, by no means improbable that the above-cited passage has reference to this pious and laudable effort of Pococke, to make the Christians of the east acquainted with the church of England.
But they would not call her coroxos, Deipara, Mother-of-God:" here, therefore, this impassioned encomiast of the Turks has stretched the bow too íar.
apostle-"One believeth that he may eat all things; another, who is weak, eateth herbs. He, that eateth, eateth to the Lord; for he giveth God thanks: he, that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks."-(Rom. xiv. 2, 6.) The preference which this Jesuit gives to the Turk above the Protestant, might find its parallel, though in a higher degree, in those words, Not this man, but Barabbas: for he has more than half offered the right-hand of fellowship to the Mohammedans, who would rob Jesus Christ of his divinity; while he, at the same time, calumniates those in England and in Holland, who honor, not less than the Romanist, Christ as the Son of God, and reject only their excessive worship, practically amounting to adoration, of the blessed Virgin. Scarcely, even, will a correct disciple of Rome be brought to admire the juxta-position, which he has so smartly effected, of Jerusalem and Mecca! But it may suffice briefly to remark, on one main point, that, at the bottom of all these delusive representations, there is a mystery of iniquity, which still works in the Levant. The enemies to the entrance of the pure light of the gospel will adopt the same tactics as formerly: any friend, rather than the friend of the Bible, will be the object of their choice; the Turkish civil power is even now courted, with a view to obstructing the labors of that glorious society, which has embodied in its fundamental law the best part of the spirit of Protestantism. Upon this topic, however, as belonging to the affairs of the present day, it will be proper to treat more largely in another part of this volume.
THE Sonnites are that division of the Mohammedan world, which asserts the legitimacy of the first three caliphs-Abu-Beker, Omar, and Othman. It is not designed to enter here into the various opinions of this body. In addition to the Koran, they admit a multitude of traditions and interpretations; while the rival sect, the Shiites, though they admit some traditions, yet hold them more loosely, and are almost considered by the Sonnites as unbelievers. The Sonnites regard the Grand Signior of Constantinople as their civil head and protector; and the Turks and Arabs of patron of the opposite party: yet these, also, as Syria are, generally, of this sect. Persia is the will appear under the next head, are found in Syria.
THIS is the title by which many Mohammedans in Syria are distinguished, as being the followers of Ali, the fourth Caliph, the cousin and son-in-law of Mohammed; maintaining his right to be the immediate successor of his father-in-law. In this they resemble the Persians, and are in opposition to the Turks. The following extract will give the reader a general view of the extent to which their influence reaches in these parts.
"The Metawali make, either entirely or in part, profession of that Mohammedan sect which is dominant in Persia; and, consequently, they are Shiites. Like the Persians, therefore, they neither eat nor drink with people of another religion; nor would they even use a plate from which a stranger has eaten, till they have well cleansed it. They even hold themselves to be defiled, when a stranger simply touches their clothes. As they are under the domination of the Turks, they dare not treat the Sonnites with contempt. They are sometimes under the necessity of passing themselves off as Sonnites.
"The Druses are divided into Akals, that is to say ecclesiastics; and djahels, or seculars. The ecclesiastics are dependant upon three Akals, who "In general, neither the Sonnites nor the Chris- are Sheiks among them; of whom one dwells in tians like to dwell among them; and the Maro- the district Arkub, the second in the district nites, who serve as secretaries to the Sheiks of Tschuf el Heite, and the third in the district Hasthe Metawali, seldom remain with them for many beia. The Akals are distinguished from the seyears. They have, nevertheless, for some centu- culars by their white dress. They have generally ries been in possession of several districts. A good houses on the hills; and, judging by those family named Harfoosh, the head of whom takes few which I saw on the road from Saide to Dathe title of Emir, lives at Balbec, and pays the mascus, it seems to me that they have not chosen rent of this district direct to Constantinople. At the worst situations. On Thursday evening, Sour (i. e. Tyre,) and in the adjacent country which among the Orientals is called the night of called Belad B'sherri, there are seven or eight Friday, they assemble in the house of one or other Sheiks of the family Nasif, which govern there, of their fraternity, to perform their worship and and pay their rent to the Pacha of Saide.* There is pray for the whole nation: the wives of ecclesialso Sheiks of the Metawali of the family Elastics may be present; but they do not admit Kuanza, which govern at Kirrinie and Hurmel, a seculars, not even a Sheik or an Emir. They town on the river Orontes. They pay their tribute despise all employments of honor in the world: to the Bey of Homs."-Niebuhr, Vol. II. p. 347. but perhaps, in this they make a virtue of necessity; for, on the return of Hakem, they hope to be kings, viziers, and pachas. They do not marry the daughters of seculars; and they even carry their aversion to the property of the great so far, as not to eat with the Sheiks and Emirs of their own nation. Akals eat only with Akals; and with the peasants and other poor people, who, they are certain, earn their bread by labor."Voyages en Arabie, &c. Vol. II. p. 349.
THIS people appears to be one of the most considerable in Syria, on account both of their numbers, and their political situation in Mount Lebanon. Although less numerous than the Christians, yet, together with them, they constitute nearly the whole of the population of the mountain. Neither the Christians nor the Druses, however, have the government in their hands, The Emir Bechir, who governs Mount Lebanon. is not a Druse. The government was formerly held by Mohammedans, whose policy it was to balance the Christian and Druse intérests. The present Emir is said to be a Christian; but, in conformity with this line of policy, and to keep up appearances with his superior, the Pacha of Acre, he complies with many Mohammedan usages.
The extent of territory in which the Druses are to be found is thus described by one of the Jesuit missionaries:
"We have also in our mountains another nation, of which it is not easy to discover either the origin or the religion. They are called Druses. This nation inhabits a part of Mount Lebanon, the mountains above Saide and Balbec, and the country of Jabaile and Tripoli.
"These Druses extend even into Egypt.-Lettres Ed. et Curieuses, Vol. I. p. 366.
The division of this body into religious and secular orders is described in the following terms by Niebuhr; a traveller of the greatest merit, and who has collected upon the state of various
So styled in the Firmans of the Grand Signior; but more commonly called, from his modern place of residence, Pacha of Acre,
The following passages, extracted from a more recent traveller, the enterprising Burckhardt, will develope the political state, and describe some of the more curious customs of the Druses. The account is rendered the more interesting by his having discovered that these people are not confined to Mount Lebanon, but have spread themselves to a district on the east of Damascus, the Haouran.
"It is now about one hundred and twenty years, since the government of the mountain has been always entrusted, by the Pachas of Acre and Tripoli, to an individual of the family of Shehab, to which the Emir Bechir belongs. This family derives its origin from Mecca; where its name is known, in the history of Mohammed and the first Caliphs: they are Mussulmans, and some of them pretend even to be Sherifs. About the time of the Crusades, for I have been unable to ascertain the exact period, the Shehabs left the Hedjas, and settled in a village of the Haouran, to which they gave their family name: it is still known by the appellation of Shohba; and is remarkable for its antiquities, of which I have given some account, in my journal of a tour in the Haouran. The family being noble, or of Emir origin, were considered proper persons to be governors of the mountain; for it was and still is thought necessary, that the government should not be in the hands of a Druse. The Druses being always di