Saturday, 23 May 1863

Rose at 4. “Work ― work ― work.” Off before 5. (Hezekiah’s pool ― & general Oriental look of houses.) Down by a steep path to a washing place & Cemetery, & then up towards the signal station, but finding no good views drew a “scrap” & went on to complete a drawing begun yesterday afternoon. After which, walked in search of the rox B. & M. speak of, but they are not drawable, though grand. The immense expanse of sea lies still & blue, ― clouds hiding Candia & Crigotto. ― Return. People are cutting all the σιτάρι,[1] everywhere. It is 7.30. Dawdled up to & about the footsteps, & indoors by 8. Got a Limonata, these being days of Luxury. B. ― taking medicine, cometh not to breakfast. ― Good breakfast solo, done by 9.

(Μίτατα or Μιτάτα? ― Ἄγια Ἐλέσα[2] is the name of the high saddleback mountain above the town.)

{10 Left with Δ
{11. Λιβαδι. Aloes ― & myrtle
{12. Ἀυλείμωνα visible― long road.
{12.30. Down great hill ― fountain & wasps ― gt. ascent.
{1. Top
{1.10. Descent, & stop to draw till
{2.30. set off.
{2.55. down the great ascent.
{3 ― rest at fountain ― & set off.
{3.15. At top. 3.30 meet Massey.
{4. Long bridge.
{4.25 ― wayside Inn. 4.35. corner

At 9.30 went to Massey. (W.C. [Shunaniste] Chamber on wall.) ― & later saw Bulwer, who arranged that Διονύσιος the Polisseman should go with me to a point near enough for me to see Κυθαῖρα,[3] which I have made up my mind to see. ― So at 10 ― we two set off: ― awfully hot. (Giorgio I left to clean the carpets, as I knew I should have to walk harder than he would like.) At 11. turned the “corner” to Λιϐάδι ― cheerful green spot. House of Ἠγούμενος of Μυρτίοτισσα.[4] Aloes by the roadside ― the only ones I have seen in this island, ― growing out of Σχίνος & Μυρτιὰ hedges.[5] Staid a bit & got some water [illegible] Μαγαζινάκι[6] or road side “Pothouse.” Dionysius thoughtfully took a glass with him. Then crossed the big bridge of 14 arches, & there the good road ends. That which follows is execrable, over stony hideous undulations ― & it was 12 before the hills of Κυθαίρα were visible ― hard walking ― & on seeing the immense valley & hill I had to descend to, cross, & mount before I could reach the view of Αὐλείμωνα, ― my heart failed me, & I very nearly turned back. A good view of the harbour alone could be had from a church on a higher hill, ― but that would not include Παλαιόπολις ―:[7] ― so at last ― never say die ― I decided to go on.

Down a steep hill ― the western wall of the valley ― & then at 12.30, a delightful Βρύσις[8] ― (though there were wasps,) of clear good water, & Dionýsios having so cautiously taken a glass tumbler, the effect was delicious & pleasant. After 4 glasses, I began to cross the valley ― (which is not cultivated ―) & ascend the hill ― or eastern side. (Oleanders in full bloom.) By 1. I reached the top ― but, “upon my honour, Mrs. Brady” it was awful work. 15 minutes brought me to the spot ˆ[a place] where all ancient Κυθαίρα was below me ― a most magnificent site: whether from the broad & long plain ― much of it corn & olive covered, ― or from the Harbour, or from the surrounding hills. Drew till 2.30. Something there is in these old sites which speaks of the past. The descent to the valley occupied 25 minutes quick walking, & 5 more went at the fountain: after which at 3 began the ascent, & I did the hardest bit in 20 minutes, but the longer ascent took 10 more, when I met Massey, who most kindly had come out to meet me. So we walked on, by that awful stony road, & by 4 reached the long bridge. Stopped for water & Lemonade at the “Inn,” & left it at 4.25: reaching the corner, or junction of the 2 roads by 4.35: ― & then, by sharp walking, ― home by 5.25. || continued at page C.

May 23. continued.

― no slight walk ― altogether, but seeing & drawing Κυθαίρα was somewhat.

Lemonade: tub: & dressed, & thence dinner, at which B. sate eating next to nothing: I ― ashamed of appetite ate all ― & drank more.

Later came Massey ― good simple fellow ― & some Greeks, (whom B. sent away after half an hour. Then, at 9.30 ― came to bed.


[1] Wheat (NB).

[2] Agia Eleousa.

[3] Cythera.

[4] Abbot of Myrtidiotissa [Μυρτιδιώτισσα] (NB).

[5] Lentisk & Myrtle hedges (NB).

[6] Small shop (NB).

[7] Palaiopolis.

[8] Fountain (NB).

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

Leave a comment

Filed under 1863, Diary Entry

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s