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"The breeze is fresh enough at present," said Knighton, "the schooner must be going seven or eight knots. Few pirates could catch her now."

"They seldom attack vessels under sail," said Mac Cuming; "formerly they had no objection to do so, but the present fashion of the Klephts appears to be to wait till a craft brings up, and then to board her at night. The Margaret was taken in this way in September, '36." "Where?" asked Knighton.

"Off Cape Janissary," replied Mac Cuming, "at the mouth of the Dardanelles, on the Asiatic or Trojan side, almost in face of Tenedos." "Did they plunder the vessel ?" asked Webster.

"No; the Margaret was in ballast, but the rascals murdered the man who had the anchor-watch, and, unfortunately, and notwithstanding the unremitting exertions of the English consul, Mr. Lander, who is since dead, the pirates were never discovered. Three weeks afterwards another piracy was committed near the very same spot. I was in the Dardanelles at the time."

"What was the name of the second captured vessel ?"

"The Hellespont, commanded by an old friend of mine, of the name of Longridge. The affair made some noise among the merchants, and on our reaching Constantinople led to many former cases being raked up, of which I had not previously heard. I took a few notes of them, as they were from time to time mentioned at Stampa's, or appeared in English papers, and I rather think I have the memoranda on board. After we've determined our latitude I'll overhaul my writing-desk and search, but I must now join Millerby on deck, the sun should be nearly up."

"Who's Stampa ?" asked Webster of Knighton, as Mac Cuming left the cabin.

"Stampa-the glorious Stampa-is as well known in the Turkish capital as the sultan himself," replied Knighton. "His rank, it is true, is but that of a ship-chandler, of which useful class there are but two or three notables in the place, Stampa and Proctor, and, I think, another, but I can't recollect his name. Of Greek and such-like ship-chandlers there may be shoals for aught I know to the contrary, but the English, as a body, patronise Stampa. He was the original in the trade, has lived safely through revolutions, plague, and fire; was on the spot when the Janissaries were suppressed, or rather 'smashed into smithereens' in '26, and at the present moment is said to be as rich as a Jew, though it is right to say the old boy is a Christian, and one not only in name but in character. His shop is situate in the suburb of Galata, and is the grand resort of English skippers and travellers, where they quaff grog and pale ale, smoke the best tobacco, pick up the news, arrange excursions into the country, and trips to the Mussulman side of the harbour, to the tcharshees, baths, bazaars, and so on. The shop itself is what is vulgarly called an omnium gatherum, containing every thing, from vinegar to attar of roses, trinkets, cheeses, and hams, walking-sticks, ladies' slippers, and God knows what; order what you will it is obtainable through Stampa, the honest Genoese, in the turn of a handspike, or before you could say Jack Robinson. I'll introduce you, my boy, as soon as we set foot on the shores of the Golden Horn."

Three raps with a handspike were at this moment suddenly heard on deck, following the cry of Mac Cuming,

"Twelve o'clock, there!" "call the watch !" "heave the log!" "sound the pump !" "strike the bell!" And as soon as the third rap was given, a seaman's rough voice exclaimed,

"Starboard watch ahoy! below there! do you hear the news? Twelve o'clock, you old salts-tumble up!"

Though this was simply addressed to the forecastle, Knighton and Webster, the two passengers in the cabin, also went on deck to look around them.

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'Eight bells, gentlemen," said Millerby.

Now, steward, bear a-hand with the dinner," added Mac Cuming. "Ay, ay, sir," was the reply from the smoking cabouse.

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'E.S.E.," said the man at the wheel, to him of the starboard watch, who came aft to relieve him. And on an E.S.E. course the schooner was accordingly kept.

"Seven knots, sir," said the apprentice, as he hauled in the log-line, which was immediately rewound upon its reel.

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Any thing in sight?" asked Webster.

"A French steamer, probably bound for Algiers," added Millerby. "And a felucca standing in, close-hauled, for the Sicilian coast—nothing else."

"What's our latitude ?" inquired Knighton of Mac Cuming, who was pencilling four or five lines of figures on the weather bulwark.

Exactly thirty-eight north," was the answer.

The party now fell into a quarter-deck walk, and after a few turns, during which the cabin-boy had laid the cloth for dinner, the steward received-inter alia-our favourite dish, a baked sea-pie, from the cook, and then having deposited it in due form below, announced that dinner was ready, whereupon Mac Cuming, Knighton, and Webster dived into the cabin upon gastronomic thoughts intent, while Millerby remained on watch, the whole of the men, the helmsman excepted, being also sent below to their salt junk and potatoes.

By-and-bye the whole party were again on deck, taking their wine and grog (Millerby having been relieved for half-an-hour by Mac Cuming during the hour's dinner-time) and the conversation shortly turned again upon piracy. Mac Cuming had fortunately found his notes, and by these it appeared that on the 5th of October, 1836, the brig Hellespont, already alluded to, when at anchor off Cape Greco, on the European side, at the entrance of the Dardanelles, was at 9h. 30m. P. M. boarded by pirates from a boat that dropped stealthily alongside. The only person on deck was a boy, the crew having all turned in. A crowd of Greeks at once took possession of the brig, the boy, after receiving a blow from a musket, escaping below. The carpenter then tried to gain the deck, but was beaten back into the forecastle. The pirates remained on board an hour or two, loaded their boat with all the stores and provisions, and sails, and rope, on deck, did as much damage to the vessel as they could with their swords, and ultimately left her, having taken the precaution of battening down the hatches to keep the crew below as long as possible after their departure.

"This piracy of the brig Hellespont," continued Mac Cuming, " occurred in October, '36, and passing on to '37, I find by my notes that in

that year three piracies were committed; one in June, '37, one in August, 37, and one about Christmas, '37. The first case was that of the Thomas Crisp, an English merchantman, boarded and plundered when at anchor between Tenedos and the main; the third case in order of date was that of the Hope, of Glasgow, boarded at the same anchorage, the mate of the Hope being wounded; and the second case happened more to the southward, namely near Candia. This second case appeared in most of the English newspapers. It occurred on the 31st of August, '37. The unfortunate vessel was a Greek saccoleva, commanded by one Stamati Cocchina, bound from Canea, in Candia, to Spezzia, between Napoli di Romania and Athens. The pirates surprised the saccoleva off Candia, under the pretence of being custom-house officers. The crew, four in number, the captain, and five passengers, were all murdered except two! The vessel was scuttled and went down, but the two survivors managed to swim ashore, and five of the pirates who had gained no less than 20,000 dollars by this capture, were ultimately taken, and after a delay of twelvemonths, executed at Zante on the 27th of November, '38.

"Notwithstanding this example, the years '38 and '39 were not without their piracies. In the former year, on the 1st of September, the Hendrika Elizabeth, a Dutch merchant-brig, was taken near Scio; and in '39 an Austrian brig, the Bocchese, was attacked under sail near Tenedos. In the year '40 there appears to have been a lull; I have no notes of piracy in that year," continued Mac Cuming, "though probably our consuls at Smyrna or Salonica, Syra, Athens, or Napoli di Romania, could tell a very different tale. Speaking of Napoli, I may remind you that this was the place where the guillotine was first used in Greece (soon after Otho's accession). The culprit who suffered was a pirate who had assassinated, first the captain of a caïque, then the servant of a passenger, next the passenger himself, and then to crown all he had seized the passenger's wife, carried her to an unfrequented islet, whence after some little time she was miraculously rescued by some passing ship, and the assassin brought to justice."

"Had he been taken down to Malta for trial," said Knighton, "the chances are he would have been acquitted. There seems to be a most unaccountable mania at Malta for acquitting pirates. A mixed court might be established at Tenedos to try such criminals."

The Yankee fashion is the best," said Millerby. "A drum-head court-martial and a swing at the yard-arm, an hour after capture. Or 'give 'em the stem' if they attack you under way."

"Our humanity-mongers won't allow that," said Webster. "There would be a fine outcry in Exeter Hall. They'll never consent to that." "Not till some pious nobleman's yacht is taken, and his family experience the tender mercies that animate the classic bosom of the regenerated Greek! D-n the Greeks, say I; they're the greatest rascals under the sun, and those only who have lived among them a year or two, can understand the extent of their rascality. Sorry enough we ought all to be that England ever helped them against the Turks. Navarino was indeed an 'untoward event.''

"But how about this piracy near Scio ?" inquired Webster of Mac Cuming, thus bringing back the conversation to the point whence it had for a moment diverged.

"The case near Scio," said Mac Cuming, "was that of the Hendrika Elizabeth. The Bocchese, as I said just now, was attacked under sail

near Tenedos; the Hendrika when becalmed near Scio. The Bocchese was armed, and the Austrians killed several of the pirates in beating off the two large boats in which they attacked her. This was on the 7th of January, '39.

"The Hendrika was taken on the 1st of September, '38, and an account of this affair immediately appeared in the Journal de Smyrne. The circumstances were these :-'Hailed by a country boat, rowed but by two men, she was about to supply them with the water they pitifully requested, when several armed fellows started from their hiding-place under the half-deck of the boat, fired a volley upon the brig, wounded three of her crew, ran alongside, and boarded. Compelling the Dutchmen to proceed to Ipsara they there hove-to behind the island, sent all hands below, bound the captain's arms, filled their own boat with plunder, and then scuttled the brig! On the departure of the pirates the crew and captain, after much trouble, fortunately regained the deck, but all their efforts at the pumps were of no avail; the vessel continued to fill with water, and at last she heeled over and sunk when about two leagues to the northward of Scio. All hands fortunately reached Smyrna in one of the brig's boats, but as to the pirates nothing more was heard of them. This was in '38, the Bocchese affair was in '39, six months before the death of Sultan Mahmoud.' "

"Pray continue your yarn," said Webster, "it interests me much."

"As far as my own information goes," said Mac Cuming, "there was, as I said just now, a lull among the pirates in 1840; it is true I was not in the Mediterranean in that year, and therefore not exactly in the best position for news, but the 16th of June, '41, proved the 'water-rats' to be again out of their holes. On that day two piratical vessels, a schooner and a cutter, chased a large Turkish caïque from Tenedos to Cape Baba, opposite Mytelene-the birth-place of Barbarossa-and ultimately they gained so fast upon her that to escape she was compelled to run ashore. During the chase a continual fire of musketry was kept up. These were probably the same vessels of which the Countess Grosvenor speaks in her Narrative of a Yacht Voyage,' by stating that Mr. Lander, the English consul, warned her on the 23rd of June, '41, against two piratical craft cruising off the Troad and Mytelene. Her ladyship's yacht, however, the Dolphin, did not fall in with them. When the news of the attack on the caïque reached Smyrna, H.M.S. Dido put to sea."

"But caught no pirates," said Millerby, "though an Austrian brig of war accompanied her."

"Our government," said Knighton, "seeing the number of English vessels trading between Liverpool, London, and Constantinople, ought always to keep a smart sloop-of-war on station at Tenedos, and also an armed steamer cruising among the islands. Too many of the fleet are kept idle at Malta. Here already are cases enough to attract ministerial attention in the Margaret, Hope, Hellespont, and Thomas Crisp, in addition to the foreign vessels that have been taken or attacked. And doubtless scores of cases are never reported or known in England at all.” "Like enough," said Millerby, "and dead men tell no tales. I remember that at the close of '41, when the Candiotes fruitlessly rose against the young sultan, who had then not reigned two years, several vessels were fallen in with in the Arches,* abandoned and plundered, and

• "Arches" is the term generally used by sailors to indicate the Grecian Archipelago.

it was conjectured that the craft, ostensibly fitted out in the Greek islands to assist the Candiote insurgents, had in reality turned pirates. It is well known that they were well provided with arms and ammunition, and they probably plundered and murdered in all directions."

"Well," said Webster, as pirates seem to continue so much the fashion in Greek waters, we had better exercise all hands at the great guns the very first calm we fall into. I think I could nearly hit a beefcask myself, wind and weather permitting; but, after all, a rifle is the best piece to pink a pirate with.'

"We have two six-pounders," said Millerby, " as you know, but, perhaps, you are not aware our owners have actually sent us to sea without a single shot! Of powder there is galore, more than enough. So far we are in luck."

"As for shot," said Mac Cuming, "we'd soon find a make-shift, by cramming the guns with any thing; with nails, bottles, coals, and junks of wood. Besides we have a few bullets."

"And pirates," said Millerby, "are frequently to be beaten off by bullets and a little pluck. A French brig, Le Petit Matelot, beat off some of the rascals when at anchor off Scala Nuova, near Ephesus, on the 5th of May, '42, and you have already heard that the Bocchese did the same in January, '39, near Tenedos, when under sail."

"True enough," said Mac Cuming, "yet the success of Le Petit Matelot in May, '42, must still be contrasted with the unfortunate affair near Smyrna but a few weeks afterwards. The pirates were probably the same in both cases."

"What was that Smyrna business ?" inquired Webster.

"On the 19th of July, '42, a boat with a crew of eight," replied Mac Cuming, "was off Kara Bournu, bound out of Smyrna to Calymnos, having on board a sum of money received for a cargo of sponge which they had just landed at the former port. Pirates attacked them in the night, and murdered seven men out of the eight on board, plundering the craft of every thing as a matter of course. The villains are now seldom content with plunder; they seem to delight in blood." "Tis a strange thing," said Webster, "that a Turk is seldom, if ever, found on board these pirate craft in the Levant."

"The majority of the crews," replied Mac Cuming, "are invariably and indisputably Greeks, with frequently a few Sclavonians, and occasionally a Maltese or two. Albanians seldom show their noses out of the Adriatic, in which sea the Austrian marine is tolerably vigilant. Piracy, however, occasionally occurs among the Ionian Islands.'

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"Never mind the Adriatic or the Ionian Islands, as we're now bound to the Arches. Give us another case or two, Mac Cuming. Your last was in July, '42. I had no conception piracy yet existed to such an

extent."

"The countless isles of the Ægean," said Mac Cuming, "afford so many places of concealment, that very many years may elapse before a trip through the Arches will be unattended with danger. The chief rendezvous of the celebrated Hugo Crevelier, who flourished as a pirate for twenty years, is said to have been Paros-there is a long account of that worthy in the second volume of Emerson's Letters'-but Paros is but a poor hiding-place now in comparison with others I could myself point out, and some of which are fortunately known to our surveying officers."

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