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Saturday C Magazine.


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20TH, 1835.




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THE CITY OF CORDOVA, IN SPAIN. 1 kingdom in the west where geometry, astronomy,

and physic, were regularly studied."

Cordova increased greatly in size and beauty under Cordova, the capital of the Spanish kingdom of the rule of Abdurrahman : that monarch surrounded that name, and the second city in the Spanish pro- the town with a wall, built a magnificent palace with vince of Andalusia, stands upon the right bank of delightful gardens, and began the erection of the the river Guadalquivir, at the foot of the ridge of Great Mosque, which became afterwards so celebrated mountains known by the name of the Sierra Morena. | throughout the Mohammedan world. His successors It is a place of considerable antiquity, though the followed in the same course. In the tenth century exact period of its foundation is unknown. Under the houses of Cordova were numbered, and found to the Romans it bore the names of Corduba and Colonia amount to 213,077, inhabited by the common people, Patricia, and was a place of importance, especially and 60,300 occupied by the nobles, ministers, seas a seat of learning. Its academy was highly cretaries, military people, and other dependants of the celebrated as a school of rhetoric and philosophy; state, besides hotels, baths, and taverns; the shops and among the eminent men who were born in the were 80,155. city, the two Senecas—the rhetorician and the philo An Arabian writer, of a subsequent date, relates in sopher and the poet Lucan, stand conspicuous one of his works, that through Cordova, with the

On the fall of the Roman empire, Cordova, with continuations of its suburbs, he had travelled ten the rest of Spain, was subdued by the Goths, and miles by the light of lamps along an uninterrupted remained in their hands until the descent of the extent of buildings; it is further said, that the Saracens in the eighth century. But in the year buildings extended to a length of twenty-four miles 711, when Roderic, " the last of the Goths,” had one way, and six miles the other, all this space being been defeated, in the famous battle of Xeres by covered with houses, palaces, mosques, and gardens, Tarik, the Mohammedan leader, a detachment of 700 along the banks of the Guadalquivir. horse surprised Cordova in a night-assault, and The Moorish inhabitants of this famous city were drove the governor, with 400 adherents, into the distinguished in many respects from those of other great church. Here the Christians fortified them- | large towns in Spain. They were notorious, even to selves, and, as water was conveyed to them under- a proverb, for resisting their kings and abusing their ground from a spring at the foot of the mountains, rulers, on which account one of their governors they were able to maintain their position for three likened them to “ the camel, which," said he, “ fails months. It happened, however, (according to the not to complain, whether you lighten or aggravate Arabian writers,) that a black man, of the Moslem its burden, so that there is no discovering what they army, had been captured by the besieged, and as they are pleased with, that you may seek it, nor what they had never seen a human being of the same colour dislike, that you may avoid it." They were remarkbefore, they led the unfortunate prisoner to their con- able, also, according to the Arabian writers, for the duit of water, with a serious intention of washing elegance of their dress, for an attention to the duties him white ! After seven days of confinement, this of their religion, for the pride which they took in man contrived to effect his escape, and having in their great mosque, for a disposition to destroy wineformed his commander of the mode in which the shops wherever they might be discovered, and yet to place was supplied with water, the conduit was dis connive at various forbidden practices, and for the covered and stopped.

glory which they attached to nobility of descent, as The besieged had now no hope of deliverance, yet well as to warlike enterprise and science. The nobles when safety was offered them on condition of of the city, also, were renowned for their habits of becoming Mohammedans, or paying tribute, they | splendour and magnificence. firmly refused to submit, and the church being set on The literary reputation of Cordova did not decline fire around them, they perished in the flames.

while the city was under the domination of the Scarcely fifty years after this event, Cordova be- Saracens. In the reign of the second Alhakam, came the capital of the Mohammedan empire in during the tenth century, it possessed a royal library Spain, and the seat of an independent sovereignty, of 400,000 volumes, which had been collected from which was dignified by the title of the Western distant countries, at a cost exceedingly great; ani Kaliphate. On the subversion of the house of Om- among the whole number, there was scarcely one maiya, in Asia, and the elevation of the Abassides which had not been carefully examined by the Kaliph to the Caliphate of Damascus, Abdurrahman, the l himself, and which had not, written in it, by his own sole survivor of the exiled family, passed over into hand, the genealogy, birth, and death of its author. Spain ; after a successful struggle, he established The high estimation, indeed, in which books were himself king of the Moorish possessions, and fixed : held, is sufficiently attested by the prevalence of the his royal residence at Cordova in the year 759. practice of collecting them, even for the purpose of " Then ," to use the words of a learned traveller of ostentation; for we are told that the wealthy and the the last century, “ began those flourishing ages of rich in Cordova were the most impassioned biblioArabian gallantry and magnificence, which rendered maniacs in the world. An Arabian writer gives us the Moors of Spain superior to all their contempo- | the following amusing instance. raries in arts and arms, and made Cordova one of “ During my residence in Corcova, I attended the most splendid cities of the world. During the the book-market for a considerable time, in the course of two centuries this court continued to be hope of finding a certain work which I was very the resort of all professors of the polite arts, and of anxious to obtain; and at length, to my great joy, it such as valued themselves upon their military and presented itself in an elegant hand with an approknightly accomplishments, while the rest of Europe i priate commentary. I then bid for it, and kept inwas buried in ignorance, debased by brutality of , creasing my bidding; but still it returned to the manners, or distracted by superstitious disputes. crier though the price was excessive. Surprised at Cordova became the centre of politeness, industry, this, I asked the man to show me who had outbid and genius. Tilts and tournaments, with other' me for this book, to a sum so much beyond its costly shows, were long the darling pastimes of a worth; and he pointed out a person in the dress o wealthy and happy people ; and this was the only a magistrate, to whom, on approaching, I said, 'May

God exalt his worship the doctor! if you are desirous, only that he may pass over it to the chase," was the of this book, I will relinquish it; for through our reply, upon hearing which Hisham bound himself by mutual biddings, the price is much above its value.' an oath never to cross the bridge, a vow which he He replied, 'I am no doctor, neither do I know scrupulously fulfilled. In the river are erected several what the book contains, but I am anxious to complete mills, which are worked by the stream, for the grinda library which I am forming, that I may appear / ing of corn, respectable among the chiefs of the city; and as ! In ancient times Cordova was distinguished for there yet remains a vacant place capable of holding | excellence in a variety of manufactures. Its leather this book, which is beautifully written and elegantly was especially celebrated, and the term cordovan, or, bound. I admire it, and care not how high I raise its as we say, cordwain, has been long used to denote price: praise to God for the means he has been pleased the kired of leather prepared after the fashion origito grant me, which are not small !' Being at last | nally practised in this city. Mr. Murphy observed, induced to abandon the competition, I said, “Well! on the north bank of the Guadalquivir, a collection means are not abundant except with one like thee, of the tan-pits which were employed in the process; and according to the proverb, “He who has no teeth, they were formed of baked earth, a material much gives away the nut. I, who am not ignorant of the used by the Moors in Spain. In all the different contents of this book, and wish to make some use stages of the manufacture, the skill of the Moorish of it, having but scanty means, am of necessity de- artisans was remarkable : after having prepared the barred from it.'”

| skins with various ingredients, they dyed them of The first decline of Cordova is coincident with the lively colours, such as blue, green, and scarlet, and jealousies and dissensions which distracted the then finished by imparting to them such a degree of Moorish power in Spain after the close of the tenth brilliancy as gave them the appearance of having been century; the fatal blow was given to its prosperity { varnished. La Borde says, that this branch of min the year 1236, when it was re-conquered by the dustry is still carried on in a few places in AndaSpaniards under Fernando the saint (as he is called), 1 lusia ; it was almost destroyed on the expulsion of who banished all the Moslem inhabitants. “When the Moors, who carried it with them to Morocco. they were gone,” says a modern traveller, “ Cordova / Cordova itself possesses at the present day scarcely remained desolate; the grass sprang up in its streets any manufactures at all; a small quantity of ribbons, and in its court-yards, and the cooling music of its hats, baize, &c. is all that is now fabricated in this fountains murmured unheard. At length, by grants once productive city. of houses and lands with exemption from taxes, a few thriftless people were induced to emigrate from The -sober and industrious man hath “ the heartfelt other parts of Spain, and settle in the newly-con- ' pleasure that he is carrying home the children's bread, or quered region. The descendants of these men form perhaps the staff of life, to a worn-out father or mother, the scanty population of the country as it exists at who fed him while he was as yet even more helpless than the present day."

they. And if he lingers not on his way, nor himself dries The situation of Cordova is very beautiful; or, as

or up the source from whence should flow these blessings of

his hearth and home, then he reaps the glad harvest of his Mr. Inglis says, it is." truly delightful. East and

industry; the more glad, in that it is of his own sowing. west Aows the Guadalquivir,—the level stripe that He will prize this more dearly, if he thinks how he may lies along its banks, rich in every production that is mar and ruffle the sweet tranquillity of his homestead, if congenial to the climate of Andalusia; a range of when he hath tarried long at the drink, and reason is low hills wooded to the summit, and diversified by drowned in the cup, and he reeleth home in folly or in

fierceness, and scareth his little ones, and the kiss of welgardens, orange-groves, and country-houses, stretch,

come is pushed aside with a curse, and fear inhabits the parallel with the river, bounding the prospect to the

dwelling of love. When for the word of a father's knowsouth, while the elevated chain of the Sierra Morena, ledge, or the teaching of a father's experience, or the blesspushes forward its picturesque out-posts almost to ing of a father's affection, is heard the idiot gabble of unthe walls of the city."

meaning wrath, or of whining foolishness; the natural Like a great many other cities, however, Cordova feelings of childhood are then most painfully distorted : looks best at a distance; the streets are narrow,

they would fain love and reverence the parent; they are

afraid to love him then; or shall their reverence for him crooked, and dirty. The Plaza Mayor, or Great Square,

pare, | lead them even to tread in his staggering steps? Well is somewhat distinguished for its size, its regularity, I might the wise king ask, “Who hath woe? Who hath and the beauty of the colonnade by which it is sur- sorrow? Who hath contentions? Who hath babbling ? ruanded. A part of the town is of Roman, and a Who hath wounds without cause? Who hath redness of part of Moorish origin; many of the houses are in eyes ?' They that tarry long at the wine, they that go to ruins. There are some remains of the Alcazar, or seek mixed drink. They have stricken me, saith the

drunkard, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and ancient palace of the Moorish kings; they now form

I knew it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet a part of the archiepiscopal palace. The great

again.' . If the head of the family be thus sick, most surely mosque has been used as the Cathedral since the will the whole heart be faint, and every member be made recovery of the city by the Spaniards.

to suffer; and if the wages of industry be thus abused, the The bridge of Cordova, which our readers will see blessed links which would bind a man to contentment and delineated in our engraving, is a magnificent structure: happiness are broken.--LANDON's Sermons. its length is 1000 feet, and the number of its arches sixteen. Tradition relates that there was formerly a


1. Urge no healtlis. bridge over the Guadalquivir, erected on the site of

2. Profane no divine ordinances. the present structure, about 200 years before the

3. Touch no state matters. arrival of the Arabs in Spain; but this edifice being

4. Reveal no secrets. greatly decayed, the Moors built the original of the

5. Pick no quarrels. existing bridge about the year 721. About the close

6. Make no comparisons. of the eighth century, it was restored throughout by

7. Maintain no ill opinions.

8. Keep no bad company. Hisham the son of Abdurrahman; and it is said

9. Encourage no vice. that he happened on a certain day to ask one of his

10. Make no long meals. ministers what the people of Cordova said of the 11. Repeat no grievances. work. “ They say the prince's motive for this is 12. Lay no wagers.


mankind, yet the greatest portion of these tribes are noxious if not poisonous, and so little difference. at times, exists between the wholesome and the deleterious species, that it is with great diffculty they are distinguished. In general we ought to reject all those which grow on the skirts of woods, and on decayed trees, those whose smell is displeasing, or taste hot to the palate, all those which when broken give out a milky juice, and generally all that are finely coloured. In many parts abroad, however, some of the noxious kinds are eaten, after being pickled or boiled; it is said that the poisonous quality is soluble, and therefore extracted by the liquid : however this may be, the experiment is too dangerous to be attempted, and the only kinds of fungi found in England decidedly fit for the table, are the common

mushroom, and the champignon. LUMC Lac

The Common Mushroom is found in its early state

as a button. When its cap is in the form of a This well-known production belongs to the tribe rou

roundish knob, as seen in the engraving, and in its of fungi. The fungi appear to form the last link

adult state, when it appears like an inverted saucer; in the chain of vegetable life, connecting organized

its substance is fleshy, and its gills (the under part) bodies with inorganized matter. “In simplicity of

have a pinkish hue, perceptible even when their form and structure, they differ widely from the other

colour is darkened by age, the smell also is agreeable. vegetable tribes, as they present neither leaves nor flowers. Destined to spring up in the midst of corruption, and to draw their nourishment from putrefaction, the fastidious observer turns from them with disgust; and the true naturalist, while aware of their importance in the scale of nature, finding them too perishable in their nature to be easily preserved in his cabinet, too capricious in their growth to be cultivated in his garden, and too sportive in their forms to be successfully delineated with his pencil, leaves them with regret, to rot on the dunghill, or to wither in the wood."

They were formerly supposed to spring from the glutinous results of putrefied substances, but the wiser views of later philosophers have clearly shown that the impious doctrine of organized bodies being produced from inorganized matter, without the intervention of the creative power of the Maker of all things, is a wicked fallacy, and utterly at variance with all the laws of nature as far as our limited powers have been able to trace them.

For a long time the seeds of the mushroom-tribe remained undiscovered; but recent and more care

The TOADSTOOL, Agaricus ovatus. ful observations have shown their existence, though their minute size renders them very difficult of

The Toadstool, on the contrary, which most nearly detection. Perhaps no class of vegetables is more

resembles it, is more flimsy in its texture, exhales an widely distributed than that of the fungi; for not only

unpleasant odour, and the gills are of a dark colour, do the boleti which are found on decayed wood, and on

nearly black, without the least blush of pink, and bcthe borders of forests; the toadstools, the puff-balls, and

come almost fluid when bruised between the fingers. a variety of other larger species, belong to this tribe; but every indication of mouldiness on old leather, badly-preserved fruit, mildew, &c., is but a collection of innumerable minute productions of the same nature.

“ The fungi exhibit some of the finest colours of the vegetable kingdom. Nature having withheld from this portion of her plants, those flowers which form the chief beauties of the higher orders, and even the leaves with which they are clothed, has profusely scattered her colours over the whole surface of the mushrooms, ornamenting the cap with one colour, the gills with a second, and the stem with a third. Let but the lover of natural beauty free his mind from prejudice, and then examine the forms and

Tue CHAMPIGNON, Agaricus pratensis. colouring of the fungi, and he will be compelled to The Champignon, the other species of eatable admit that many of them rival in symmetry and fungus, is not so readily distinguished from many splendour, the rose and the lily, those gaudy orna- other small sorts; it generally grows in circles, and is ments of Flora.”

of a light-brown colour and conical shape, like a cap. Beautiful, however, as some of these vegetable pro- Those, however, who are not accustomed to gather ductions are and useful as other kinds prove to mushrooms, should be extremely cautious in select



ing any of the smaller kinds for the purpose of food. | pose of concealing the taste of damaged flour, or to make Some people are in the habit of placing a silver the bread white when formed of second flour, &c. The use

of alum teaspoon in the water in which they boil mushrooms,

is liable to this objection, as being positively

injurious to the health; it is employed to lighten the dough. believing that if they are noxious the silver will be

Before bread is made, a certain preparation called turned black; but although this may take place in

ferment, or leaven, must be obtained, for the purpose of the case of the most hurtful, it is not so certain making the dough rise, or become light and spongy, in when applied as a test to the less dangerous kinds. consequence of its undergoing one stage of the chemical The three following species of fungi are decidedly action called fermentation. It is found by experience that

this action is most readily and perfectly brought about by poisonous.

introducing a portion of dough which has already fermented to a certain degree, and is called leaven, or by adding to the dough some liquid in a fermenting state; this liquid is usually what is called yeast, the froth that rises to the top of malt liquor, while fermenting.

If this yeast were taken from strong beer, the quantity of hops employed in the brewing would impart a disagreeably bitter taste to the bread. It must either be yeast from ale, or yeast made on purpose for the baker. In great cities, baker's yeast is usually made by boiling malt and hops as if for brewing; when the wort* is cool, a quantity of flour is mixed up with it, and brewer's yeast is added to excite fermentation; when this begins to decline, the mixture is strained, and is ready for use.

In remote districts, where yeast for baking cannot be obtained as often as it is wanted, leaven is employed instead of it. Flour and water are well mixed up into a stiff dough,

which is set in a warm place, and undergoes a spontaneous Agaricus plicatilis.

Aguricus glutinosus.

fermentation; bubbles of carbonic acid gas form in the mass, giving it that porous spongy texture which is observable in all bread, and causing the dough to swell up or rise; it also becomes rather sour: in this state it is leaven, and is capable of exciting a similar fermentation in other dough sooner than would be produced spontaneously, for it usually takes a fortnight at ordinary temperatures to bring on this action. Hence a piece of this prepared dough is added to the batch of which the bread is to be made.

When bread is made in the usual way and in large quantities, the following is the process. The requisite proportion of yeast is diluted with hot water till the mixture is of the temperature of 100 degrees; some salt is added, and the liquor poured into a wooden kneading-trough. One third of the whole quantity of flour about to be made into bread is first mixed with the liquor, being well worked with the hands, until the combination is thoroughly effected and the mass free from lumps; when this is the case, the trough is covered up closely, and the mixture is left for several hours, during which time a fermentation commences, and the mass swells: when this has arrived at the proper stage, the whole is gradually incorporated with a new quantity of cold, or luke-warm, water, according to the season of the year, with some salt dissolved in it. The remainder of the flour is then added, and the whole again

kneaded and worked together to a uniform consistence of Boletus spumosus.

a stiff paste-this is dough. The dough is again left for

an hour or two, till it begins to work and swell again, when THE USEFUL ARTS. No. III.

it becomes sufficiently spongy, it is made up into loaves

and put into the oven. BREAD.

The oven is a chamber built of fire-bricks, and having The miller grinds the corn delivered to him, and sorts the an arched roof or dome, with a flat floor of tiles; it is flour into three qualities, called firsts, seconds, and thirds. generally underground, or if not, its walls should be suffiThe first is employed for French-bread, and for the finest ciently thick to obviate the loss of heat by radiation. and whitest sort of wheaten-bread consumed in large towns. | Wood, where sufficiently abundant, constitutes the fuel for Household-bread is made from a mixture of firsts and heating the oven. A quantity of small brushwood, with seconds, with, occasionally, some proportion of thirds. | larger logs and billets of wood, not yielding turpentine or Brown-bread is made from a mixture of the better boulted resin in burning, is piled up on the tile floor and set on flour, with the meal as it leaves the mill-stones; the portion fire; when thoroughly lighted the door of the oven is of bran contained in this kind of bread gives the colour, | closed, a small aperture only being left to supply air, and and being of a resinous nature, imparts medicinal pro- as soon as the fuel is burnt out, the ashes are hastily swept perties to the bread, which renders it wholesome to some, out and the bread put in. and the reverse to other, constitutions.

But in this country, where wood-fuel is every day becomSalt is a necessary ingredient in bread, improving its ing more expensive, ovens are heated with coal, a separate flavour and rendering it lighter. The proportion to be furnace being constructed adjoining the oven, with a flue used varies, according to the quality of the flour; about which opens into it; another funnel over the mouth allows seven pounds to every four hundred weight of flour is the the escape of the smoke. A fire being made in the furaverage quantity.

nace, the bread is not put into the oven till all smoke has Many bakers add potatoes to the flour. The potatoes ceased, or till the fire burns quite clear; the strong draught are steamed till they become mealy, and are then pounded up the funnel prevents any soot lodging in the oven by fine; this meal is mixed up with cold water, to the consist- | carrying the smoke up before it. ence of cream, and being made to ferment by the addition The loaves of bread are placed regularly on the tile of yeast, (which will be presently described,) it is added to floor, touching each other, the largest size being put in the flour during the process of making the bread. The first, to give them more time to bake. When the oven is admixture of potatoes neither injures the quality nor the filled, the door is shut, and the heat kept up for two hours, wholesomeness of the bread; but adulterations, which are which time is sufficient for the ordinary sized loaves. not so innocent, are sometimes had recourse to, for the pur- ! • These terms will be explained in a subsequent paper.

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