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Diary entry by Gertrude Bell

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Gertrude Bell
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Mon. 17 [17 March 1902] Mr Edward Whittall came to see me in the
morning to tell me the Yemenlar expedition was off and propose
Ephesus. At 11.30 I went to Menemen with a letter to Dr B¸hlan
Cassel. Mr Hatton travelled so far with me and introduced me to Dr B
at the station, who turned out to be a nice cheerful enthusiastic
German, nephew of Frl. Schwabe. I nearly had Mr Hatton and the
Station master of the party! (His name is I think H¸ffner.) Burungik
which is Larissa is a Pelasgic town on the other side of the Hermus
[Gediz]. We took about 1 h. to reach the Hermus, there left the
carriage, ferried over the river and walked 10 m up to the village. We
went first to the top of the acropolis where they are excavating the
foundations of a sort of temenos with a temple which he thinks may be
the tomb of a hero for it has a sort of tomb in it not yet excavated and
another hole perhaps for burnt offerings, a vague building with a most
confusing ground plan, a fine polygonal wall of excellent
workmanship. When I was there the stylobate of the real temple was
laid bare - near this they had just found a small clay figure of the
Mother Goddess, a woman and child. Round the hero shrine they
have found the fragments of a painted terracotta frieze, feasts and
chariot races, some in beautiful workmanship and so perfectly
preserved that they think it can only have been in place a very short
time. To the E of this acropolis is the necropolis and beyond it I think
a fortified hill. Traces of a road round the acropolis and a paved via
sacra round the hero shrine. Went down and had tea with Dr B and
saw the most interesting frieze. All this is circa 700 BC - they hoped to
come on Mycenaean things but have found no trace. Dr B. is very
keen on Colophon. So I went back to my carriage - most gay[?] at the
food for it was bazaar day in Menemen - and drove back to the station
which I reached 1/2 an hour too early. Made the acquaintance of Mrs
Whiteman - her husband has a flour mill here. Found Mr Hatton in the
train and we went back to Busma Khanek (B........ he calls it) and I onto
Bournabat [Bornova] which I reached about 7.30. Helen came to
meet me. She and Kathleen and Herbert dined with me. After dinner
a mass of cousins came in, the Lafontaines who stay with Mr Storr, Ed.
Whittalls, Dick Whittall etc and practised their Easter anthem while I
talked to Mr and Mrs Herbert.

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