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some Philhellenes, have been omitted; not from want of respect to them, but from the Author's not wishing to speak of any individual, particularly, whom he did not know, (with the exception of Lord Byron) but whose names must have a place in a complete History.
As for dates, the Author has not deemed them of sufficient consequence in a work of this kind, to devote much time in searching them out; he has never put them down therefore, but in those cases in which he could rely upon them.
The influence which the policy of the European Powers have had upon the progress of the Revolution, has been great; but the Author has not ventured to dwell much upon this subject, which requires more investigation, than his time will now allow him to make.
The Author hesitates not to rank himself among the friends, and even among the admirers, of the Modern Greeks; for he has been rather surprised at finding so much national spirit, and so much virtue among them, than that there was so little; and he thinks he has seen enough of them, to justify him looking confidently for the day, when they will shew themselves worthy of their glorious descent; to the day, when it shall no longer be said with truth, that "Philopomen was the last of the Greeks."
The arguments of those who reason upon the present degraded situation of the Greeks, and assert that they are less deserving our notice than the Turks, are not worth the pains of a refutation. The feelings of that man, who regards with perfectly philosophical indifference, such a people, such a cause, and such a country, as that of Greece, are not to be condemned; but, they are not to be envied. And surely a like allowance should be made for the opposite feeling; for that enthusiasm which is pardonable in this cause, if in any; for it springs from the best feelings of human nature. To admire Greece, and Greeks, for what they have been, may not be rational, but it is natural; to hear the descendant of Demosthenes speaking the same beautiful language, which flowed like a rill, or thundered like a torrent, from his lips ;-to hear the Modern Greek women saying, like the Spartan matron, to her son, as he goes out to battle-"With it, or upon it;"-to see the descendant of Miltiades, fighting for liberty on the battle-ground of Marathon; are scenes which the scholar cannot contem.
plate without some emotion; and the feeling of indifference which philosophy tells him to substitute for it, is an artificial, and not a natural one.
But the Author has never, for an instant, let his enthusiasm blind him to the faults of the Greeks, or influence him in recording them; nor has he ever ranked himself among those Philhellenes, who have imagined that the cause Greece was to be advanced, by holding up to the world a false picture of the disinterested patriotism, or heroic courage of the Modern Greeks. He has endeavoured impartially, and faithfully, to give an historical Sketch of those events, which have for the last seven years so much interested the American public; it is as yet very imperfect; but should it be indulgently received, he hopes that farther researches, and an investigation of Turkish, as well as Greek character and actions, may enable him to present something, that may merit the name of a complete History of the Revolution in Greece.
GREECE Proper, is that small section of country situated between the thirty-sixth, and fortieth parallels of Northern Latitude; and between the twentieth, and twenty-fourth degrees of Eastern Longitude.
It is bounded on the North, by Macedonia and Albania Proper; on the East, by the Egean Sea; on the South, by the Me. diterranean; and on the West, by the Ionian Sea. Its greatest length does not exceed 250 miles, and its mean breadth not 150; it contains no more than twenty-three thousand square miles, exclusive of Macedonia, Albania Proper, and the Islands.
But this little spot of earth has attracted more attention than any other country, for the last thirty centuries: the inhabitants of that beautiful land have been regarded by the rest of mankind, with alternate feelings of surprise, of fear, of admiration, of pity, and of contempt; till at last, they seemed lost and forgotten by all :—when suddenly, they burst from the slumber of ages—they rush upon the arena of their former glory, and loudly chailenge the attention, if not the admiration of the world.
No age or nation has as yet refused the tribute of unqualified admiration of the enterprise, the genius, and the taste of the Ancient Greeks; nor this alone, because they were able many cen. turies ago to eclipse the rest of the world, but, that they then carried the mental powers to a degree of perfection, which has ne ver yet been equalled.
And this admiration is the more unhesitatingly given, since there is not the shadow of a doubt, about the reality of what we admire; it is not to legend, it is not even to history alone, that we trust; the works of the Greek Poets, Orators, Sculptors, and Architects, still exist, and speak for themselves, in language stronger than that of words. The "Blind old man of Scio's rocky isle," is still considered the first of poets; and no modern oratory
has excelled that which once swayed the Athenian multitude: the greatest modern artists take for their guides the still existing works of Grecian sculptors; and the finest specimens of modern architecture, are but feeble approaches to the grace and symmetry which abounded in Grecian buildings.
The traveller who visits Greece, is at every step presented with some striking proof of the enterprise and genius, of the former inhabitants of the land: if he finds but a solitary column, standing erect among the ruins of a temple,* he sees in that column, such beauty and strength, lightness and stability, blended into such graceful proportion, as convinces him the building must have been the work of a master genius. But when he visits the Temple of Theseus, of which every column is still standing, and which is the finest specimen of architecture, perhaps in the world, there is no bound to his feelings of wonder and admiration.
And if those works which chance, or the durability of their materials, has handed down to our age, are so beautiful, and so perfect in their kind; can we not infer, that in the more perish. able arts, the Ancient Greeks were as great masters? Could the paintings of Zeuxis and Parhasius be now exhibited, they would be as rich a treat to the artist, as the Rhodian has given them, in the ever-dying throes of Laocoon.
But it is not alone to her poets and orators, to her painters and sculptors, that Greece owes her glory; whether we contemplate her Philosophers, her Statesmen, her Patriots, or her Warriors, we shall find the same extraordinary development of the human faculties, the same brilliant example of greatness and worth.
Greece, by the mental superiority of her inhabitants, overthrew empires; made herself mistress of all around her; and raised herself to a pinnacle of glory, from which she was pre
* This fact is well exemplified in the remains of the Temple of Bacchus in the island of Naxos. Of this Temple there is now only to be seen a gateway, eighteen feet high, and ten broad; formed by two erect slabs of marble, with a third laid across the top. It would seem the simplest thing in the world, to place three slabs in this position, and form a fine gateway; yet the traveller exclaims, that he never saw any thing equal to it ; “ what beauty, what strength, what proportion, and yet, how simple! well-those old Greeks were wonderful men !" Such are the exclamations, (often it would seem involuntary) of travellers who visit it.