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Full text of "Journeys In Persia And Kurdistan ( Vol.Ii)."

LETTER sxx             IGNOEANT WORSHIP                         331

earthen flagon. There are no windows, and the rough
walls are black with candle smoke. The young man who
showed the church took a Gospel from the dais, kissing
the cross upon it before handing it to me, and then
on seeing that I was interested went home and brought
a MS. of St. Matthew's Gospel, with several rudely-
illuminated scenes from our Lord's life. " Christos,"
he said with a smile, as he pointed to the central figure
in the first illustration, and so on as he showed me the
others, for in each there was a figure of the Christ, not
crowned and risen, but suffering and humiliated. Next
morning, in the bitter cold of the hour before sunrise,
the clang of the mallet on the sounding-board assembled
the villagers for matins, and to the Christ crowned and
risen and "sitting on the right hand of power" they
rendered honour as Divine, though in the midst of the
grossest superstition and darkness, and for Him whom
they "ignorantly worship" they are at this moment
suffering the loss of all things. Their empty sheepfold
might have been full to-day if they had acknowledged
Him as a Prophet and no more.1

Leaving this wretched hamlet, where the unfortunate
peasants are as avaricious as they are poor and dirty,
and passing a Kurdish village with a stone fort pic-
turesquely situated, we crossed a pass into a solitary
valley, on which high rounded hills descend in harmonised
buffs and browns, both hills and valleys covered with un-
cut hay. The zaptiehs said that this was a specially
dangerous place, and urged the caravan to its utmost
speed. We met three Armenian, katirgis in their shirts.
They complained most bitterly that they had been robbed
an hour before of five mules with their equipments, as well

1 In another village, a young man in speaking of tlieir circumstances
said : " "We don't know much, but we love the Lord Jesus well enough to
die for Him."