Sunday, 26 April 1863

Rose at 6 ― leaving the A.D.C.s asleep. And at 7. ― finding a small boat below the steamer Caradoc ― had all things put in, & came ashore with G. ― landing below Capt. Sterke’s house ― the Commandant. G. was scandalized at my going away so abruptly ― taking leave of no one ― but I feared the wind might rise again. (The Lazzaretto is now a lunatic asylum ― & the lunatics how & yell. ―)

Capt. Sterke ― (I had a letter to him from Philipps of the 6th ―) received me most hospitably ――― hum! very Irish! ― “Mish=mash” is the house & all therein. At 9. breakfast ― “mish mash.” ― There is a subaltern ― Braidy ― also ― ἔτζι κ’ ἔτζι. ― At 10.30. Capt. S. rushed out to receive H.E. the Lord H.C. at the Residency. ― I escaped ― (the quiet circle of houses at Βαθὺ[1] is very singular ―) & set off with George for the day ― & soon we were walking along the ˇ[dull] still gulf sides: ― high Νέριτος[2] above. At Αἐτὸ[3] ― or Ὀπιο’ Αἐτὸ ― we began the great climb to Αἐτὸ, & reached the top at 1.30, or thereabouts. I remember coming here in 1848. ― The view of Samos & all Κεφελλένεα[4] is very grand & lonely. ― Drew. ― Sheep ― goats ― vast grey stones &c. &c. Great variety of herbs & flowers ― Cistus convolvulus, Mullein, salvia, &c. &c. Orioles. Civil peasants ― short ― quiet=dead-looking: all in dark Wapping or Idrington=like costumes ― ˇ[a] contrast to the picturesque S. Maurotes. Drew various times, & at 5 am writing this on my way back. Both the views of the the Channel & Cephalonia, & that of Mt. Neritus are beautiful ― & each quite of a Lake character. Capt. Wilkinson, & the 2 A.D.C.s approach so I walk back with them to a point near Ἀετὸς, & thence, when they join me again, go on to Βαθὺ. The wind continues dreadfully high, & unless the L.H.C. starts at 6 or earlier tomorrow, I do not see how he can hope to go. Reached Itaca [sic] at 6.30. The sunset effects on Νέριτος were so beautiful that I must needs try to get a whole afternoon in that direction. Having washed, ― dinner. ― Capt. Sterke & Mr. Braidy. Both very kindly & pleasant, & as it were, awaking into new life by a stranger coming to them. Life here is a weary sad life indeed to those who have not had the chance of making “resources.” Retired 10.30, & in bed by 11. The wind seems higher than ever, & roars aloud: I wonder if such wind is very frequent here. The roaring is terribly grand, & comes in vast bursts ― worse than it has been yet: it seems a hurricane.

I have a tiny room here ― but have arranged all things comfortably.


[1] Vathi.

[2] Νήριτος, a mountain peak in Ithaca (NB).

[3] Aetos.

[4] Cephalonia.

[Transcribed by Marco Graziosi from Houghton Library, Harvard University, MS Eng. 797.3. Image.]

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Filed under 1863, Diary Entry

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