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Diary entry by Gertrude Bell

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Bell, Gertrude Margaret Lowthian
Creation Date
Extent and medium
1 entry, paper
Turkey » Turgut

38.258467, 26.80692

Wed Ap 17 [17 April 1907] Off at 4 AM, the stars just beginning to pale.
The Scorpion was climbing up the SE of the sky. A wonderful
morning very still at first, then some wind came and we were able to
sail a good deal round the barren islands. On one we saw a little
deer running over the rocks, it was Tarandos which M. called Salih
Adasi. We had to tack for an hour before we reached Durranda - very
tedious it was, Fattuh thought nothing of sea methods. We arrived
about 10. There was no town but a kahweh by the sea and through
the rich land scattered houses. Figs and other fruit trees beans corn,
anemones orchises. The high bluff of Kara D stands up boldly from
the sea. 11/2 hours sharp walking to Budrum [Bodrum
(Halicarnassus)] over very rough paths. After an hour reached a
kahweh with some carved stones near, bulls' heads and garlands - ?
altars. Soon after we caught sight of Budrum lying in its curve with the
castle of St Peter standing out in the middle. We passed over the
town wall and so down to the port. After some search I discovered the
site of the Mausoleum with the temple platform above and the theatre
behind. Magnificent view from here. So down into the bazaar where I
eat to the surprise and delight of the town. I was famished by this time.
Then to the castle. We had to get permission from the Zabit as it is
used as a prison. This done we were let in. Through a gate, down a
causeway into a space round the inner wall; another gate (all have
splendid arms above them with the shield of the Knights of St John
everwhere) and into an outer enceinte with a bas relief of St George
let into the wall at the end. So onto the outer sea bastion at the end of
which we reached the English tower, with a great lion carved on it. Up
to the top of this were we could look into the castle itself with all the
prisoners in it and the 2 great square towers standing over all. Back
along the sea front and up onto the inner wall at the opposite corner.
A court lay beneath with the chapel (now a mosque) in it and all the
prisoners walking about. Very splendid indeed. So back and a very
hot walk to the kaik which we reached at 3.15. Off about 3.45. The
spar of our lateen sail broke at once and had to be patched up tant
bien que mal. Went inside the islands. Tarandos has a little strip of
cultivation on the east and a few figs. Passed quite close to the
harbour of [space left blank] but had not time to go in and see the
ruins. Wind very fitful. We saw the walls of Iassus very plainly. Got to
K¸l¸k [G¸ll¸k] at 5.30, had tea and by 6 we were off in an araba to
Melas [Milas (Mylasa)]. Lovely night with a young moon to light us.
Exciting moments getting over the mud. At 9 about reached the
Whittall depot 1/4 of an hour from the town. Kept by one Demitri. Here
we eat and slept. The mice woke me by running over my pillow so I
pulled my bed out onto the balcony and slept there.

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