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had profited by the advantages and facilities which his situation afforded him in seeing the greater part of the South-Eastern continent of Asia. He had traversed in various directions the British possessions in that quarter of the world; the vast empire of China so connected with our Eastern dominions by trade and situation, and the extensive regions which lie be tween Hindostan and the great chain of the Fimalaya mountains, the strong girdle of the Eastern hemisphere, dividing it into two almost equal parts north and south. In this way he had employed the three preceding years; his constitution naturally strong and inured to fatigue, had even improved under the hardships which he had encountered; and now, at the period at which this narrative commenced, he was preparing to set out from Bombay, the chief settlement of Great Britain on the Western coast of the peninsula of Hindostan, 72° E. long. 19° N. lat. upon his travels through Persia, Arabia, the Holy Land and Turkey in Asia, which would comprize the South Western part of the Asiatic continent, as his former route had led him through the North-Eastern.
But the reader must be introduced to another character, who will occupy a very prominent place in the following volume. William Walsh had been one of Captain Blisset's own seamen, having on various occasions proved not alone his courage, for every British sailor has
that, but his attachment to his commander, and also manifested those good qualities of mind which make a man not only an object of esteem but of regard. He had been engaged to accompany him through those countries which it was his intention to visit; and well · and faithfully had he justified the good opinion of his captain, In times of difficulty and per plexity, and where is the traveller who has not had to contend with such, no one was more prompt in suggesting how they should extricate themselves, and when danger threatened his ready handed courage and presence of mind, had often been of the most essential service. He had also a naturally good understanding, so that Captain Blisset had taken all opportunities of conversing with him on what they saw; and having received a good plain education, all these advantages had so expanded his mind and enlarged his knowledge, that he became at last more the companiou and the friend than the attendant upon Captain Blisset.
It might, perhaps be supposed, that Captain Blisset who had been now so long absent from England, would feel some desire to return homewards to rest from the fatigues he had undergone, but we must recollect, that eyen from his boyhood when he entered the sea service, he had been accustomed to a rambling life, so that a stationary or inactive life would have been most irksome to him; nor was his
companion less fitted for the life they were leading. He was what seamen call a straight forward fellow; he feared no danger, though by no means fool-hardy; and his frame had become so strong that as he said himself, though he had rather live in his own country, where the weather is always moderated between the extremes of heat and cold; he had no ob jection to follow Captain Blisset to the Pole "or to the Tropics; in the former, he said, we can provide ourselves with warm clothing, in the latter, providentially, we are not obliged to make much exertion during the mid-day heat, and so wherever you go, continued he to Captain Blisset, I am ready to follow. My old father only must not be left in the dark concerning my movements, I can write to him to say, that our return is necessarily delayed for a year or two more; and as he has a comfortable birth in Greenwich Hospital, and thank God feels no want; I trust he will not grieve at my intention. Well said, William, replied Captain Blisset, I have a father too, and were I to forget my daty to him you would remind me of it. To-morrow we will both write home, and send the letters by the Bombay merchantman which is taking in a loading for Europe. I am going to forward a few presents to my friends in London, and can transmit any thing you please by the same opporą tunity. I thank you, Sir, said William. Į
know of none which would be useful to an humble mau like my father. He loves smoking a pipe now and then, but the pipes which we use here, with their tubes 10 feet long, would be useless, and as for silk handker. chiefs, I dont see that a plain man has any business with them. You are right William, replied Captain Blisset, send him an order upon my agent in London for 10 guineas, and then he can please himself by buying what he likes best or wants most.
And now, continued Captain Blisset, for the plan of our future operations; we have gone over many a league by land and sea together, and here we are at the very same point from which we set out to visit South-Eastern Asia, What say you now to an excursion through the South-Western parts of the same continent? An easy voyage would see us safely landed in Persia, where I am sure my friend Mirza Abul Hassan would give us a hearty welcome; we are then contiguous to Arabia, and thus we can reach the Holy Land where our blessed Lord and Saviour was born and died from thence passports may be easily procured for tra velling through Turkey and Asia; and at Constantinople we may again rest ourselves, and look about before we decide whether we shall return homewards or take another long ramble, Well Sir, said William, I never failed you in time of ured yet, nor shall 1 now-so far as
Constantinople I am your's in heart and hand, but when I set foot in Europe, for I understand that that city, though the capital of Turkey, is in our own quarter of the world; I dont think it will be easy to make me turn my back to home. Time enough to speak of that, William, said Captain Blisset when we get amongst the Turks; but I thank you heartily for your present compliance with my wishes, and shall endeavour to repay it in kindness. Even at this moment were you disposed to leave me, I should deem it my duty to assist you to a comfortable situation; how much more then shall I be disposed to befriend you for standing by me now. I hope, Captain Blisset said William, with strong marks of honest feeling, I have ever attached myself to you from a better motive than personal interest; I am not insensible to the advantages you speak of, for of course the object of every prudent man in my station of life, must be to place himself above the reach of want, when it pleases God to deprive him of health, or when old age takes away his strength; but I think I should rather stay with you on short allowance than go to any one else, and so the matter is settled; I am ready for Turkey or Persia, or any other part of the earth you chuse to lead the way to, and if it be the will of Providence, when wes do return to old England, we shall see it with