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Bisani, Alessandro (?): A picturesque tour through parts of Europe, Asia and Africa, written by an Italian Gentleman, with plates by James Stuart. London, 1793.



Greeks after the plague at Smyrna



August 1788

Midsummer being over, the plague has now ceased; for this kind of putrid fever loses its malignancy as the intense heat of the season decreases. The Greeks have now forgotten that this contagion exercised its fury amongst them, as one may say, only a moment ago; that it tore from their affectionate arms their friends and relations; that their own lives were divided between the despair excited by these losses, and the constant apprehension of falling victims themselves to a similar fate. They are now in high spirits: they dance, sing, and play, and think only of enjoying the pleasures of life; in which they do right. In the evening the air resounds with the harmony of their voices attuned to musical instuments, so that one would imagine their days pass in a continual round of feasting and merriment.


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