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laughing, and the galley will hoist her ancient Roman sail, and commence tacking down the Nile. It is best to take the inner road to Karnak. The river path is longer and doggier, and more difficult. The inner road is never dull ; though it passes by Englishmen's houses and Americans' Missions, it has always stray figures of the procession of Egypt moving as mutely as if they were ghosts of the past, and not living examples of the present. At morning and evening the procession is as incessant as a cinematograph of native life. Upper Egypt of to-day makes an admirable setting for the temples of the antique. The camel and the buffalo have the fantastic outlines of the Orient. The fashions in waistcloths, and garments like the galabeah and burnoose, have not appreciably changed since prehistoric times. People sat on the ground before they sat on chairs, and the fellah continues to sit on the ground. So, except the policeman and the tourist, there is nothing to interfere with the picture, as you approach Karnak, by that road through the palm groves, running past an inhabited village, which looks as if it had been built in the days of the Pharaohs, to a recently excavated village, which really was built by one of the Pharaohs of the Bible—taking in on the way that wonderful scrapbook of temples which we call Karnak.
ARN AK cannot be detailed within the limits of the longest chapter. The utmost one can do is to try and present vignettes of it. You are riding contentedly on the soft, sandy road past that village in the palm grove, amused with the tiny children leading or riding the gigantic buffalo; the little girl shepherdesses with their rusty flocks; the graceful women drawing water at the fountain, or stalking majestically away with pitchers balanced on their heads; the kuttab of infants learning the Koran, seen through an open door; and the half-wild dogs. The battered Sphinxes in the sand, chequered by the sunlight through the interlacing palms, make you look up, and there you see the gateway of the Ptolemies, with its bright frescoes painted before our era began. In the sand beside it sit humble dealers in antiquities, parading little blue gods and the beads of mummies. You have no eyes for them. The temple of Khonsu, the most perfect in Karnak, is in front of your eyes—Khonsu, the most beautiful of all the gods of Egypt, the son of the Sun, whose head, found in his father's temple, is a joy for ever. You do not enter Khonsu's temple, because in front of you the various ruins of the Temple of Amon-Ra, the largest in all the world, group themselves into a pyramid of which Queen Hatasu's obelisk is the apex. While on your right vast broken pylons of the elder world thrust their bluff heads above the palm groves from the Temple of Mút. Here there is a sort of square, as large as that palace
square of Palermo, which contains a miniature Pompeii, sur
the temple OF AMON-RA AT KARNAk. The largest in the world. The ruins of this group are a mile and a half round. Sir H. Beerbohm Tree's False Gods at His Majesty's
had its principal scene laid in this temple. [p. 412
rounded by the temples of the Trinity of Thebes. To-day it has no level; it is broken by clusters of palms, hollows, and little hills, mostly crowned with the white domes of Moslem saints. The hoopooes dance and toss their blackand-white plumes, and give their musical parody of the cuckoo, as you canter by, impatient to find yourself at the porch of the giant temple. The porch itself is nothing, merely a great pylon closed by a modern wicket where the ghafir stands to inspect the tourists' tickets. But the avenue of gleaming Sphinxes in front of it is one of the most intimate touches of the ancient world. Each is perfect enough to be the glory of a museum ; their marble has not lost its polish ; their faces are full of mystery; the world has never made since such a majestic avenue of sculpture. Here is one of the most beautiful and wonderful creations of the Egypt of the Pharaohs, left where it was erected, and as it was erected before the days of Moses, From this moment marvels never cease till you shake the dust of Karnak's temples from your feet. Everything is majestic in beauty and repose; nearly everything is enormous in stature and space. That vast court, with one huge column springing from its midst, and colossal statues guarding the gate of the little gem of a temple built by one of the great Rameses', bears the name of King Shishak, the conqueror of Jerusalem. At its end are two grand pylons reduced to mountains of fallen stone. M. Legrain, the brilliant Frenchman, entrusted with the preservation and restoration of the temples, knows how to put each piece back in its place, whenever he is given the money, as he has restored the columns, which fell, in the crowning glory of Karnak, called “The Hall of Columns.” This is one of the wonders of the world. There is no colonnade to compare with it for the number and vastness of its columns. There is a forest of them, the largest eighty feet high and thirty feet round. Time has dealt gently with their beautiful colours and basreliefs of the story of the gods. Once the angered Amon-Ra exerted himself mightily and threw down a score of the columns, but M. Legrain has reared them in their places one