Puslapio vaizdai

thirteen Christian houses, all of which were more or less injured, but the former had more property here and better houses, and seem to have been the greater sufferers.

At Patalaria, the next village on my road, there were, seven Christian houses of small value ruined, and two Moslem farmsteads with substantial buildings, where the destruction was less complete than in the other villages. The millstones were split by fire, and it was clear that the proprietors had lost more than the Christians.

From Patalaria I rode to Vryses, a village containing sixty-five Christian and fifteen Moslem houses. There had been most ruthless destruction here. The people had taken no part in the insurrection, and when the Mussulman inhabitants left, carrying with them all their moveable property and doors and windows, they had lent them their mules to aid in the work of transport. They confessed that three of the fugitives' houses had been destroyed by the insurgents, which I visited as well as several others which had not been injured.

Before the troops arrived these people had sent a petition to the Vali protesting their fidelity to the Government and claiming protection, and his Excellency wrote to reassure them, declaring they were safe. The irregulars lost no time in committing all the havoc they could, tearing down the woodwork of the houses, and entering the cellars, smashed the large stone jars containing oil and broke open the large hogsheads of wine. Several cellars thus treated I entered. There were four churches in this village, one a really handsome structure, of which nothing was left but the bare walls and roofs, while the tombs in the graveyards had been opened.

I may remark that neither at Vryses nor in any other ruined village does any mosque exist, so that the desecration of churches and graves was not directly provoked by similar acts perpetrated by the Christians, and in no case throughout the island have I heard of sacrilege committed in Turkish cemeteries. The Christians in Vryses had been incomparably the greater sufferers, but I observed no very substantial houses.

The last village I inspected was Modi, containing thirty-two Christian and twentyfive Mussulman houses, not one of which had been spared. There were two very handsome houses, belonging to Moslems, which had been utterly ruined, the walls alone standing. The proprietor of one of them had made himself extremely obnoxious to the Christians in an official position he held in Canea, and hence he was one of the first objects of their spite. These two houses must have been worth all the houses of the Christians put together. The churches here, as elsewhere, were destroyed.

On the whole it appeared to me that throughout the ruined district the Christians had been the greater sufferers, owing to the circumstance that they had not had time to carry away their oil, wine, and household stuffs, and this was more particularly the case in the five villages outside the military cordon, which had been overrun by the armed irregulars, but which I had not time to visit. As the Vali remarked to Salih Pasha in my presence, in talking of these scandalous occurrences, the Bashi-Bazouks had been the aggressors by pillaging several months ago the villages near Canea. The fugitives had taken refuge in villages further off, and had doubtless perpetrated acts of reprisal there. When the Turkish troops advanced their outposts early in April, one village (Stalos) was entirely, and others were partially plundered, and a further crowd of fugitives from them contributed to the work of destruction in more distant places.

The tidings of these events had the effect of inflaming the passions of the insurgents throughout the district of Kissamos, and, to a less extent, in Selino. The whole disgraceful series of reprisals can be directly traced to the arming and employment by Samih Pasha of Bashi-Bazouks in January, who committed these deeds under the protection of the troops. In the district of Apokorona, where they have not yet entered, the Christians have done no injury to Moslem property. One exception to this statement I must make in the case of the village of Vamos, which was occupied by a battalion of regular troops. Before evacuating that village in March, they destroyed the house of every Christian in the place, ruined the two churches and school, and opened the graves. There had been no provocation to extenuate or explain this conduct, as no plundering had gone on in that district. As soon as the troops were fairly out of the place the insurgents retaliated by destroying all the houses of the Moslems, the Government offices, and the mosque.

P.S. June 1.-I have just learnt that many Christians from the ruined villages are committing acts of reprisal on the property of Moslems in other parts of Kissamos. This news makes me fear that the attempt to reconcile the two communities, in that

district at least, is a work of insuperable difficulty, as the Mussulmans would return to find their farms in ruins.

No. 32.

My Lord,

Consul Sandwith to the Marquis of Salisbury.-(Received June 15.)

Canea, Crete, June 2, 1878. I HAVE the honour to transmit, for your Lordship's information, copies of three despatches which I have addressed to his Excellency Her Majesty's Ambassador at the Porte, having reference (1) to the attempt to bring about an understanding between the Cretan insurgents and the Porte; (2) to my having been fired at by Turkish soldiers on my way to Fré in Apokorona; and (3) to the want of harmony existing between the civil and military authorities in Crete.

I have, &c.

[blocks in formation]

I HAVE the honour to transmit a copy of the letter, with a translation, by which the Sphakians accept the mediation of England and the terms offered by the Porte, which there was no time to prepare by last post. This letter expresses much more openly their desire for union with Greece, and it ends by saying that in case such a solution of the present question is impossible, they hope that the British Government will procure them a régime which shall give a promise of future happiness to the island. It is perfectly well-known that the Sphakians are less keen for union with Greece than any other section of the islanders, but having accepted arms and money from that country, they thus express themselves, in order that, while accepting England's mediation with the conditions attached thereto, they may publicly relinquish their old programme with becoming dignity.

On the 28th ultimo I had the honour to receive a telegram from your Excellency, in which you state that the Prime Minister refuses an armistice to the insurgents, as that would be to recognize them as belligerents, a step the Porte could not be expected to take. Your Excellency adds that in your opinion a suspension of hostilities with complete amnesty is sufficient, and that orders have already been sent to suspend hostilities.

I am to endeavour to explain this to the Chiefs, as it is of the utmost importance in the interest of the Cretans that some arrangement should be come to without delay, which you trust I shall be able to effect.

On the following morning I telegraphed as follows:-" Before making known to the Chiefs the refusal of the armistice, I wait to learn whether the Prime Minister grants the concessions which I had the honour to propose in my despatch of the 26th ultimo."

I felt that there was nothing to be gained by curtly communicating the Prime Minister's answer, without at the same time being able to hold out some advantages calculated to soften the asperity of a blank refusal, and I durst not make any promises without having some idea as to the extent of the concessions the Porte might be disposed to make. The negotiations are in a very critical state, and the slightest false step might bring the result into jeopardy. The Cretans know that by finally accepting the Porte's terms, they are cutting themselves off from the hope of further aid from Greece, and that Power, directly or indirectly, continues to send cargoes of arms and considerable sums of money, last week's steamer having brought 1,000 Napoléons, and the previous one 3,000 Napoléons, while the "Panhellenion" landed large military stores in Apokorona only three days ago. The idea also seems to be generally prevalent that by continuing the struggle until the Congress meets, the European Powers might consider that they had acquired a right for better terms than those which Her Majesty's Government guardedly holds out to them.

June 2, 6 P.M.-No telegram subsequent to that which your Excellency did me the honour to send me on the 28th ultimo has reached me up to this moment. If

none arrives within two or three days, I shall do what I can to persuade the Provisional Government and the Chiefs to accept the terms held out to them by the Porte, viz., a suspension of hostilities with complete amnesty, though I entertain the hope that I may ultimately receive telegraphic instructions from your Excellency which will admit of my offering them further inducements for making their submission.

I have, &c.

[blocks in formation]


M. le Consul,

Inclosure 2 in No. 32.

The Sphakiote Chiefs to Consul Sandwith.

Fre d'Apokorona, le 14 Mai, 1878. LA bienveillante et humaine sollicitude que le Gouvernement de Sa Majesté Britannique vient de montrer de nouveau envers notre malheureux patrie a causé une joie ineffable aux Soussignés, représentants et Chefs de la Province de Sphakia. province qui a toujours été le rempart en Crète de la liberté, du Christianisme et de l'Hellénisme.

L'action dans laquelle le Gouvernement Britannique s'est engagée en prenant la noble initiative parmi toutes les autres Grandes Puissances pour intervenir dans la question Crétoise de la manière la plus expressive, en vous chargeant de communiquer aux représentants et Chefs du peuple Crétois : "Que la Sublime Porte a donné à son Excellence l'Ambassadeur d'Angleterre les assurances les plus solennelles que lorsque le moment serait venu, elle ferait, d'accord avec le Gouvernement Britannique, des arrangements pour une nouvelle forme de Gouvernement conformément aux demandes légitimes et aux besoins de l'île." Cette action, disons-nous, étant d'une haute signification, nous encourage de déclarer que notre patrie mérite de remettre avec confiance la solution de la question Crétoise à la médiation du Gouvernement de Sa Majesté Britannique. Elle doit d'autant plus le faire, vu les bienfaits que dans plusieurs circonstances l'Angleterre a rendu à la nation Hellénique dont la Crète fait partie intégrale.

L'Angleterre a coopéré, une des premières, à la fondation du Royaume Hellénique, et elle l'a étendu en lui cédant les Iles Ioniennes. De pareils bienfaits envers l'Hellénisme ne font que nous convaincre que la Grande Bretagne coopérera encore pour qu'une solution soit donné à la question Crétoise conformément aux vœux exprimés par le peuple Crétois à différentes reprises, et sanctionnés par tant de sacrifices et de sang versé pour l'union nationale. Pour une pareille solution, M. le Consul, aux raisons puissantes déclarées par le Memorandum de l'Assemblée Générale, en date du Février, il faut ajouter aussi les liens établis par la présente lutte, c'est-à-dire, que nos frères, les Hellènes libres, ont encore une fois secouru le peuple Crétois en faisant de lourds sacrifices pour qu'ils ne soient pas exposés à la discrétion des Turcs.


Nous avons, par conséquent, l'espoir que pour une pareille solution la Grande Bretagne offrira sa haute médiation pour persuader la Sublime Porte à faire ce qu'a fait l'Angleterre pour les Iles Ioniennes.

Dans tous les cas nous sommes pleinement convaincus que dans le cas de toute autre solution le Gouvernement Britannique interviendra toujours auprès de la Sublime Porte en faveur d'un régime promettant le bonheur du pays, et daignera en même temps de le revêtir de sa haute et puissante garantie.

Inclosure 3 in No. 32.

Consul Sandwith to Mr. Layard.

(Suivent les signatures.)


Canea, Crete, June 1, 1878.


WHEN I set out last week for Fré in Apokorona, I had no sooner passed into the territory of the insurgents than the Turkish soldiers occupying the heights commanding the road, and known by the name of Palaio Castre, began firing upon us. distance was considerable, perhaps about a mile, but every one of our little party heard the bullets whizzing past us, and we were glad to find ourselves before long sheltered from their flight by the brow of a hill. Knowing, from the constant complaints of the peasantry who pass along that road, that I might be fired at, I had taken the precau

tion, twenty-four hours before starting, to advise the Vali of my intended journey, and his Excellency furnished me with an escort of two mounted Zaptiés. These men had scarcely left me to return to Canea than the firing began. On my arrival at Fré I wrote to complain of this inhospitable treatment by the soldiers of the Government to which I was accredited, and Costaki Pasha expressed his extreme regret at the incident, informing me that he had immediately caused my letter to be read to Salih Pasha, who replied that, from inquiries he had made, it was the insurgents and not his troops who had fired upon me. The Vali, however, does not seem to have been satisfied with this excuse, which is too absurd to be entertained for a moment, the shots having been fired from behind us, where soldiers were posted, for his Excellency assured me that steps should be taken for the discovery and punishment of the guilty parties.

I did not report this incident last week, being desirous of affording the military authorities time and opportunity to give me some sort of satisfaction, however trifling, for the affront put upon me, but finding it is evidently their intention to take no more notice of the affair, I trust your Excellency will not think me unreasonable in bringing the matter to your notice.

Costaki Pasha told me that the peaceable peasantry came to complain to him every day of being exposed to this unprovoked firing, but that his remonstrances with Salih Pasha not having the effect of remedying the evil, it ended by the peasantry keeping away, and I have little doubt that many of them are thus driven to join the insurgents.

I have, &c.

[blocks in formation]


IT has been for some time apparent that a want of harmony exists in the relations between the Vali of this island and the Commander-in-chief of the troops. The result has been the formation of two parties in the place, that of Salih Pasha comprising all that is retrograde and much that is disreputable, his Excellency being the intimate companion of the most unscrupulous member of the clique whose power a force of constant quantity in local affairs, a certain Hassan Bey Cavouri, while Hamid Bey, the Mussulman Counsellor, throws the weight of his influence in the same scale. It is well known that Costaki Pasha is strongly opposed to the employment of the so-called Bashi-Bazouks, while Salih Pasha seems determined to retain their services. Costaki Pasha has always set his face against provoking fresh encounters with the insurgents, which, though they have been partially successful, have given more vitality to the insurrection, owing to the excesses indulged in by the irregulars, but his Excellency's better judgment has been overruled by Salih Pasha and his local allies. The Commander-in-chief was planning, the Vali now informs me, and as I had myself suspected, a fresh attack in Apokorona when the suspension of arms obtained by your Excellency put a stop to the scheme. Had it been carried out, it would have given a fatal blow to the plan of pacification formed by your Excellency. Salih Pasha, by holding himself entirely aloof from the Christian element of the population and frequenting the society of the most bigoted Mussulmans, is incapable of forming a sound estimate of the situation, and his opposition to the Vali is rapidly undermining the authority of the latter. The latest blow aimed at that authority was the liberation from prison of the malefactor Arapaki, who had headed the band at Rethymo which had murdered a party of Christians. Salih Pasha, notwithstanding his protestations to the contrary, had released him and his partners in crime, forty in number, from prison, and had brought him here; the Vali had insisted on his reimprisonment and was about to send him to Rethymo for trial, but was obliged to desist from his intention by intimidation. A few days ago he was let out of prison without the Pasha's knowledge, and his Excellency is obliged to brook the insult.

I told Costaki Pasha that your Excellency had taken steps for the removal from the island of Hamid Bey and Hassan Bey Cavouri, but he had no knowledge of any order to that effect, nor did he seem to think that a man of Hamid Bey's influence could be exiled without considerable efforts being made in his favour.

No. 33.

Sir A. H. Layard to the Marquis of Salisbury.-(Received June 17.)

Therapia, June 16, 1878.

(Telegraphic.) FOLLOWING telegram has been received from Consul at Crete :"The insurgents have refused mediation of England and appealed to Plenipotentiaries in Congress."

No. 34.

My Lord,

Mr. Wyndham to the Marquis of Salisbury.-(Received June 18.)

Athens, May 26, 1878. I HAVE the honour to inform your Lordship that if an armistice can be concluded in Crete, the observation of which by Turkey, to be guaranteed by the Porte to England, to last till Europe has come to a decision with regard to that island, the Cretan insurrectionary committees in this country undertake to discontinue sending arms and ammunition to Crete, from the time of the notification of such armistice to them. I have communicated the above to Her Majesty's Ambassador at Constantinople. I have, &c. (Signed)


No. 35.

Sir A. H. Layard to the Marquis of Salisbury.-(Received June 20.)


Therapia, June 20, 1878. SALIH PASHA, of whom Consul Sandwith complained in his despatches, has been, on my representations, removed from command of the Turkish troops in Crete.

No. 36.

My Lord,

Consul Sandwith to the Marquis of Salisbury.—(Received June 21.)

Canea, Crete, June 5, 1878. I HAVE the honour to report to your Lordship the arrival in Suda Bay, on the evening of the 2nd instant, of Her Majesty's ships "Minotaur" and "Defence," under the command of Vice-Admiral the Right Honourable Lord John Hay. Early the following morning these vessels were joined by Her Majesty's ship the "Black Prince," under the command of His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh. The squadron is lying outside Suda Island, at the entrance of the Bay, about three or four miles from the usual anchorage.

I have, &c. (Signed)


P.S.-The squadron was joined, on the 4th instant, by Her Majesty's gun-boat "Foxhound."

No. 37.

T. B. S.

Consul Sandwith to the Marquis of Salisbury.-(Received June 21.)

My Lord, Canea, Crete, June 10, 1878. THE presence of the Channel Squadron in these waters has had a marked and most salutary effect on the population, and more particularly in restraining the ardour of the military authorities. It was becoming known, just before its arrival, that a plan

« AnkstesnisTęsti »