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Diary entry by Gertrude Bell

Reference code
Bell, Gertrude Margaret Lowthian
Creation Date
Extent and medium
1 entry, paper

Mon 4. [4 December 1899] Very rainy night. Woke at 5 and went on
deck. Cold rainy and blowy. Got outside Piraeus [Piraievs] harbour
about 8 and waited a long time for the health officers. Rainy and grey.
Cloud on Parnes [Parnis] and Pentelicus [Pendelikon] and snow
also I think, cloud lifting off Hymettus [Imittos]. Went on shore in the
Grande Bretagne boat with the little old Countess and her companion.
The G.B. porter came on board - he is with Cook now - greeted me
warmly and told me Mr. Bell was in Athens [Athinai]. Travelled up with
Prof. Macalister, Mr Forbes (who stayed at Athens) the Austrian and
the Cook agent. Went at once to the G.B. where I was welcomed with
enthusiasm and sent a note to Mr B. who at once appeared. We
walked up to the Acropolis where the sun came and turned the
Parthenon gold. The beauty of the Erechtheum the grace and
exquisiteness filled me more than ever. Hymettus purple behind the
golden Parthenon and all the country down to Salamis was green
after the rains. Even on the Acropolis, itself, behind the theatre of
Dionysus, the slopes were covered with green weeds. Went into the
A. museum and saw the Archaic head and the Victories: walked down
by the temple of the Winds and so to lunch - I very hungry. The
chamber maid fell into my arms! Mr Bell lunched with me, took me
down to the station and saw me on board. We met Macalister at the
station, I introduced him to Mr B. and they got on very well. Off at 2.30
and I watched the land fade away and as all else grew indistinct, the
Acropolis and the Parthenon stood out more and more clearly. At
4.30 we passed Sunium [Kato Sounion] standing white and slender
against the purple hill. Windy and very cold. We had a very rough
night. Most of the women retired hastily before dinner. I played Miss
Milligan afterwards and did her - for the first time by myself! Went on
deck about 9 - extremely rough and rainy. Talked to Mr Abramson
and so to bed.

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