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to 1721.

to 1734.

3.C.1719, lowed to bear any office civil or military, and that Heg.1131, useless class who live solely on their fortunes be

ing absolutely unknown among the Turks, those who are not Muffulmen must necessarily cultivate the earth or carry on a trade. It is to the subjects of the empire who are termed Giaurs that Asia owes the abundance which reigns there, and the sea-ports their opulence and commerce. Nota withstanding this remonftrance, whilft Mustapha continued on the throne, the Greeks who turned papists were persecuted, and the frequent applications of the French ambassador for their redress were not attended to, as the Porte had entered into no engagement to tolerate the Romish religion but for the subjects of foreign crowns, and this minister had no right to protect the subjects of the grand seignior. But when Achme: III. had fucceeded his brother, and Ibrahim had acquired the confidence of the monarch, this minister, who comprehended what policy and reafon required from him, durst not abrogate the catcherif of the last einperor, for fear of causing a revolt in the ulema; but he hindered the effect of it, and granted in all cafes the Roman catholics and Greeks a constant protection, against the tyranny of the Greek pastors called papas.

The marquis of Bonac, at that time ambal

fador from France, took advantage of the good Holy Te disposition of this minister, to obtain a grant pulchres which had been refused a long time both to his predecessors and him. The Greeks, as we have

seen,

The Ro. man Catholics re

to 1134.

feen, had poffeffed themselves of the church of J.C.1719, the Holy fepulchre at Jerusalem, and the Latin Heg: 1131, pilgrims were, not only obliged to join in prayers with those whom they considered as schismatics, but even to pay very dear for permission to adore Jesus Christ in the place of his burial, after hav. ing bought it already by a great many fatigues and dangers. Lewis XIV. had folicited the recovery of the Holy fepulchre a long time, without ever baving been able to obtain it. Though the Turks had not presumed to give the most amicable power of the Porte an absolute refusal, yet the money of the Greeks had raised up the oppofition of the muftis, and retarded the decisions of the grand viziers, who for thirty years had kept the Latins in expectation of a catcherif. The marquis of Bonac having entered on this negotiation, supported his folicitations by a great many reasons and complaints; and the grand vizier, who was sensible of the want which the Porte would have sooner or later of France, made a merit to the ambassador of what he could not well refuse him. The first thing the Roman catholics did to the Holy fepulchre after they were in porsession was to repair the roof of it, pursuant to the catcherif which granted it them.

The divan thought they had given France such a distinguished teftimony of esteem and favor, that it was decided that this catcherif should be carried to Lewis XV. by an ambassador extraor- France. dinary. Mehemet effendi who settled the peace

at

to 1134

3.C.1799, at Paffarowitz with the Austrians and the republic Heg.1131, of Venice, went to France in that capacity. The mo choice of such a negotiator, the ablest in the Ot

toman empire, gave reason to presume that this embassy had some important object, and that the restoration of the Holy fepulchre was only the pretext of it. And indeed the Turks, who had been more infested for some years past by the Maltese galleys than formerly, had complained to the French ambassador of several captures which the Order of St. John had made from them. The great number of French gentlemen who are engaged or admitted into that Order, the ignorance of the Turks with regard to the rights of the sovereigns of Europe, and their despotic power over their tributaries, pretended fove- . reigns, whom they depose as easily as their lowest fangiacs, all this made the divan think that the king of France could retain the galleys of Malta in their ports if he pleased; and they wanted to have this friendly power restrain these religious warriors whom the Turks treated as corsairs, and fupposed, with fo little reason, subjects of France, Mehemet effendi learned in the cabinets of the French ministers, what the marquis of Bonac had already told the grand vizier several times, that the Order of Malta, sovereign on its rock, has all the Christian kings of the Roman communion for protectors, but acknowledges neither of them for master, and that, notwithstanding the treaty concluded under Bajazet II. with the knights, who

were

to 1721

to 1134

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were then at Rhodes, it is the policy and duty of J.C.1719
the Order of St. John not to make any peace with Heg.1131,
the Muffulmen. All the fruit which Mehémet
effendi brought back of his embaffy, confifted
only in presents for his master, and plans of the
palaces and gardens of Versailles and Fontain-
bleau, some parts of which Achmet endeavoured
to imitate at his feraglios of Darud bashaw and the
Mirrors, two pleasure houses which he was fonder
of than any of his other places of residence. Men
hemet effendi, who was a lover of letters, brought
fome printers likewise from France, who published
at Constantinople an edition of the Alcoran,
another of the Sunna, and another of a Turkish
grammar ; but these artisans, who might have
been so useful to a people susceptible of being en-
lightened, were soon constrained to flee from the
fury of seven or eight thousand copiers, who have
no other profession at Conftantinople and in the
other great towns, to keep themselves from mi-
fery, and whose flow and incorrect work can com-
municate but a very small quantity of knowledge
and a multiplicity of errors. All the muflulmen
consider it as a duty to have an Alcoran and a
Sunna. These, with some historians and poets
whose stile is both tumid and metaphorical, and
almost unintelligible, compose the whole lite-
rature of the Turks. One of chese manuscripts
is considered by them as a valuable moveable, but
which few people can make use of; for, if we
except the members of the ulema, the number

of

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Troubles

J.C. 1722. of Turks who can read is very small, even at
Heg.11345
&1135. Constantinople.

The Turks had enjoyed the advantages of peace in Persa for four years, when the troubles in Persia sud

denly excited the avidity of Russia, and that of
the Porte. These intestine wars sprang from the
effeminacy of the sophis, and from the little care
which they took of the government of their em-
pire. Shah Hussein; more indolent even than his
predecessors, entirely abandoned the reins of go-
vernment to those who had insinuated themselves
into his confidence. Bad kings have generally
bad ministers. Some subaltern tyrants provoked
a general insurrection in the beginning of the pre-
fent century. The flames broke out in the

pro-
vince of Candahar, inhabited by a horde of Tar-
cars, called Afghvans. One Mirveis, kelunter or
fyndic of the Afghvans, a man of some conse-
quence among his countrymen by his birth (for
there are nobles among these Tartars), his dig.
nity, and the loftiness of his soul, received the
most pointed affront from the governor of Cana
dahar. The Persian sent to the kelunter of
the Asghvans to demand his daughter, (whose
beauty was much extolled) to shut her up in his
haram, Mirveis, who was unable immediately
to revenge himself for this insult, feigned to obey.
He sent the governor a beautiful lave richly
dresied, which he assured him was his daughter.
It is remarked in history, that the greatest revo-
Jations have been occasioned by the incontinence

of

!

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