There is sufficient similarity between the bazaar, the mosques, the residences, the suburban gardens, etc., of one Persian city, and the same features of another, to justify the assertion that the description of one is a description of them all. But the presence of the Shah and his court; the pomp and circumstance of Eastern royalty; the foreign ambassadors; the military; the improvements introduced from Europe; the royal palaces of the present sovereign; the palaces and reminiscences of former kings - all these things combine to effectually elevate Teheran above the somewhat dreary sameness of provincial cities. A person in the habit of taking daily strolls here and there about the city will scarcely fail of obtaining a glimpse of the Shah, incidentally, every few days. In this respect there is little comparison to be made between him and the Sultan of Turkey, who never emerges from the seclusion of the palace, except to visit the mosque, or on extraordinary occasions; he is then driven through streets between compact lines of soldiers, so that a glimpse of his imperial person is only to be obtained by taking considerable trouble. Since the Shah's narrow escape from assassination at the hands of the Baabi conspirators in 1867, he has exercised more caution than formerly about his personal safety. Previous to that affair, it was customary for him to ride on horseback well in advance of his body-guard; but nowadays, he never rides in advance any farther than etiquette requires him to, which is about the length of his horse's neck. When his frequent outings take him beyond the city fortifications, he is generally provided with, both saddle-horse and carriage, thus enabling him to change from one to the other at will. The Shah is evidently not indifferent to the fulsome flattery of the courtiers and sycophants about him, nor insensible of the pomp and vanity of his position; nevertheless he is not without a fair share of common-sense. Perhaps the worst that can be said of him is, that he seems content to prostitute his own more enlightened and progressive views to the prejudices of a bigoted and fanatical priesthood. He seems to have a generous desire to see the country opened up to the civilizing improvements of the West, and to give the people an opportunity of emancipating themselves from their present deplorable condition; but the mollahs set their faces firmly against all reform, and the Shah evidently lacks the strength of will to override their opposition. It was owing to this criminal weakness on his part that Baron Eeuter's scheme of railways and commercial regeneration for the country proved a failure. Persia is undoubtedly the worst priest-ridden country in the world; the mollaha influence everything and everybody, from the monarch downward, to such an extent that no progress is possible. Barring outside interference, Persia will remain in its present wretched condition until the advent of a monarch with sufficient force of character to deliver the ipeople from the incubus of their present power and influence: nothing short of a general massacre, however, will be likely to accomplish complete deliverance. Without compromising his dignity as "Shah-iri-shah," "The Asylum of the Universe," etc., when dealing with his own subjects, Nasr-e-deen Shall has profited by the experiences of his European tour to the extent of recognizing, with becoming toleration, the democratic independence of Ferenghis, whose deportment betrays the fact that they are not dazed by the contemplation of his greatness. The other evening myself and a friend encountered the Shah and his crowd of attendants on one of the streets leading to the winter palace; he was returning to the palace in state after a visit of ceremony to some dignitary. First came a squad of foot-runners in quaint scarlet coats, knee-breeches, white stockings, and low shoes, and with a most fantastic head-dress, not unlike a peacock's tail on dress-parade; each runner carried a silver staff; they, were clearing the street and shouting their warning for everybody to hide their faces. Behind them came a portion of the Shah's Khajar bodyguard, well mounted, and dressed in a gray uniform, braided with black: each of these also carries a silver staff, and besides sword and dagger, has a gun slung at his back in a red 'baize case. Next came the royal carriage, containing the Shah: the carriage is somewhat like a sheriffs coach of "ye olden tyme," and is drawn by six superb grays; mounted on the off horses are three postilions in gorgeous scarlet liveries. Immediately behind the Shah's carriage, came the higher dignitaries on horseback, and lastly a confused crowd of three or four hundred horsemen. As the royal procession approached, the Persians- one and all-either hid themselves, or backed themselves up against the wall, and remained with heads bowed half-way to the ground until it passed. Seeing that we had no intention of striking this very submissive and servile attitude, first the scarlet foot-runners, and then the advance of the Khajar guard, addressed themselves to us personally, shouting appealingly as though very anxious about it: "Sahib. Sahib!" and motioned for us to do as the natives were doing. These valiant guardians of the Shah's barbaric gloriousness cling tenaciously to the belief that it is the duty of everybody, whether Ferenghi or native, to prostrate themselves in this manner before him, although the monarch himself has long ceased to expect it, and is very well satisfied if the Ferenghi respectfully doffs his hat as he goes past. Much of the nonsensical glamour and superstitious awe that formerly surrounded the person of Oriental potentates has been dissipated of late years by the moral influence of European residents and travellers. But a few years ago, it was certain death for any luckless native who failed to immediately scuttle off somewhere out of sight, or to turn his face to the wall, whenever the carriages of the royal ladies passed by; and Europeans generally turned down a side street to avoid trouble when they heard the attending eunuchs shouting "gitchin, gitchin!" (begone, begone!) down the street. But things may be done with impunity now. that before the Shah's eye-opening visit to Frangistan would have been punished with instant death; and although the eunuchs shout "gitchin, gitchin!" as lustily as ever, they are now content if people will only avert their faces respectfully as the carriages drive past.

An eccentric Austrian gentleman once saw fit to imitate the natives in turning their faces to the wall, and improved upon the time-honored custom to the extent of making salaams from the back of his head. This singular performance pleased the ladies immensely, and they reported it to the Shah. Sending for the Austrian, the Shah made him repeat the performance in his presence, and was so highly amused that he dismissed him with a handsome present.

Prominent among the improvements that have been introduced in Teheran of late, may be mentioned gas and the electric light. "Were one to make this statement and enter into no further explanations, the impression created would doubtless be illusive; for although the fact remains that these things are in existence here, they could be more appropriately placed under the heading of toys for the gratification of the Shah's desire to gather about him some of the novel and interesting things he had seen in Europe, than improvements made with any idea of benefiting the condition of the city as a whole. Indeed, one might say without exaggeration, that nothing new or beneficial is ever introduced into Persia, except for the personal gratification or glorification of the Shah; hence it is, that, while a few European improvements are to be seen in Teheran, they are found nowhere else in Persia. Coal of an inferior quality is obtained in the Elburz Mountains, near Kasveen, and brought on the backs of camels to Teheran; and enough gas is manufactured to supply two rows of lamps leading from the lop-maidan to the palace front, two rows on the east side of the palace, and a dozen more in the itself. The gas is of the poorest quality, and the lamps glimmer faintly through the gloom of a moonless evening until half-past nine, giving about as much light, or rather making darkness about as visible as would the same number of tallow candles; at this hour they are extinguished, and any Persian found outside of his own house later than this, is liable to be arrested and fined.

The electric light improvements consist of four lights, on ordinary gas-lamp posts, in the top-maidan, and a more ornamental and pretentious affair, immediately in front of the palace; these are only used on special occasions. The electric lights are a never-failing source of wonder and mystification to the common people of the city and the peasants coming in from the country. A stroll into the maidan any evening when the four electric lights are making the gas-lamps glimmer feebler than ever, reveals a small crowd of natives assembled about each post, gazing wonderingiy up at the globe, endeavoring to penetrate the secret of its brightness, and commenting freely among themselves in this wise: "Mashallah. Abdullah," says one, " here does all the light come from. They put no candles in, no naphtha, no anything; where does it come from?"

"Mashallah!" replies Abdullah, "I don't know; it lights up 'biff!' all of a sudden, without anybody putting matches to it, or going anywhere near it; nobody knows how it comes about except Sheitan (Satan) and Sheitan's children, the Ferenghis."

"Al-lah! it is wonderful." echoes another, "and our Shah is a wonderful being to give us such things to look at - Allah be praised!"

All these strange innovations and incomprehensible things produce a deep impression on the unenlightened minds of the common Persians, and helps to deify the Shah in their imagination; for although they know these things come from Frangistan, it seems natural for them to sing the praises of the Shah in connection with them. They think these five electric lights in Teheran among the wonders of the world; the glimmering gas-lamps and the electric lights help to rivet their belief that their capital is the most wonderful city in the world, and their Shah the greatest monarch extant. These extreme ideas are, of course, considerably improved upon when we leave the ranks of illiteracy; but the Persians capable of forming anything like an intelligent comparison between themselves and a European nation, are confined to the Shah himself, the corps diplomatique, and a few prominent personages who have been abroad. Always on the lookout for something to please the Shah, the news of my arrival in Teheran on the bicycle no sooner reaches the ear of the court officials than the monarch hears of it himself. On the seventh day after my arrival an officer of the palace calls on behalf of the Shah, and requests that I favor them all, by following the soldiers who will be sent to-morrow morning, at eight o'clock, Ferenghi time, to conduct me to the palace, where it is appointed that I am to meet the "Shah-in-shah and King of kings," and ride with him, on the bicycle, to his summer palace at Doshan Tepe.

"Yes, I shall, of course, be most happy to accommodate; and to be the means of introducing to the notice of His Majesty, the wonderful iron horse, the latest wonder from Frangistan," I reply; and the officer, after salaaming with more than French politeness, takes his departure. Promptly at the hour appointed the soldiers present themselves; and after waiting a few minutes for the horses of two young Englishmen who desire to accompany us part way, I mount the ever-ready bicycle, and together we follow my escort along several fairly ridable streets to the office of the foreign minister. The soldiers clear the way of pedestrians, donkeys, camels, and horses, driving them unceremoniously to the right, to the left, into the ditch - anywhere out of my road; for am I not for the time being under the Shah's special protection. I am as much the Shah's toy and plaything of the moment, as an electric light, a stop-watch, or as the big Krupp gun, the concussion of which nearly scared the soldiers out of their wits, by shaking down the little minars of one of the city gates, close to which they had unwittingly discharged it on first trial. The foreign office, like every building of pretension, whether public or private, in the land of the Lion and the Sun, is a substantial edifice of mud and brick, inclosing a square court-yard or garden, in which splashing fountains play amid a wealth of vegetation that springs, as if by waft of magician's wand, from the sandy soil of Persia wherever water is abundantly supplied. Tall, slender poplars are nodding in the morning breeze, the less lofty almond and pomegranate, sheltered from the breezes by the surrounding building, rustle never a leaf, but seem to be offering Pomona's choice products of nuts and rosy pomegranates, with modest mien and silence; whilst beds of rare exotics, peculiar to this sunny clime, imparts to the atmosphere of the cool shaded garden, a pleasing sense of being perfumed. Here, by means of the Shah's interpreter, I am introduced to Nasr-i-Mulk, the Persian foreign minister, a kindly-faced yet business-looking old gentleman, at whose request I mount and ride with some difficulty around the confined and quite unsuitable foot-walks of the garden; a crowd of officials and farrashes look on in unconcealed wonder and delight. True to their Persian characteristic of inquisitiveness, Nasr-i-Mulk and the officers catechise me unmercifully for some time concerning the mechanism and capabilities of the bicycle, and about the past and future of the journey around the world. In company with the interpreter, I now ride out to the Doshan Tepe gate, where we are to await the arrival of the Shah. From the Doshan Tepe gate is some four English miles of fairly good artificial road, leading to one of the royal summer palaces and gardens. His Majesty goes this morning to the mountains beyond Doshan Tepe on a shooting excursion, and wishes me to ride out with his party a few miles, thus giving him a good opportunity of seeing something of what bicycle travelling is like. The tardy monarch keeps myself and a large crowd of attendants waiting a full hour at the gate, ere he puts in an appearance. Among the crowd is the Shah's chief shikaree (hunter), a grizzled old veteran, beneath whose rifle many a forest prowler of the Caspian slope of Mazanderau has been laid low. The shikaree, upon seeing me ride, and not being able to comprehend how one can possibly maintain the equilibrium, exclaims: "Oh, ayab Ingilis." (Oh, the wonderful English!) Everybody's face is wreathed in smiles at the old shikaree's exclamation of wonderment, and when I jokingly advise him that he ought to do his hunting for the future on a bicycle, and again mount and ride with hands off handles to demonstrate the possibility of shooting from the saddle, the delighted crowd of horsemen burst out in hearty laughter, many of them exclaiming, "Bravo! bravo!" At length the word goes round that the Shah is coming. Everybody dismounts, and as the royal carriage drives up, every Persian bows his head nearly to the ground, remaining in that highly submissive attitude until the carriage halts and the Shah summons myself and the interpreter to his side. I am the only Ferenghi in the party, my two English companions having returned to the city, intending to rejoin me when I separate from the Shah.

The Shah impresses one as being more intelligent than the average Persian of the higher class; and although they are, as a nation, inordinately inquisitive, no Persian has taken a more lively interest in the bicycle than His Majesty seems to take, as, through his interpreter, he plys me with all manner of questions. Among other questions he asks if the Koords didn't molest me when coming through Koordistan without an escort; and upon hearing the story of my adventure with the Koordish shepherds between Ovahjik and Khoi, he seems greatly amused. Another large party of horsemen arrived with the Shah, swelling the company to perhaps two hundred attendants. Pedaling alongside the carriage, in the best position for the Shah to see, we proceed toward Doshan Tepe, the crowd of horsemen following, some behind and others careering over the stony plain through which the Doshan Tepe highway leads. After covering about half a mile, the Shah leaves the carriage and mounts a saddle-horse, in order to the better "put me through some exercises." First he requests me to give him an exhibition of speed; then I have to ride a short distance over the rough stone-strewn plain, to demonstrate the possibility of traversing a rough country, after which he desires to see me ride at the slowest pace possible. All this evidently interests him not a little, and he seems even more amused than interested, laughing quite heartily several times as he rides alongside the bicycle. After awhile he again exchanges for the carriage, and at four miles from the city gate we arrive at the palace garden. Through this garden is a long, smooth walk, and here the Shah again requests an exhibition of my speeding abilities. The garden is traversed with a network of irrigating ditches; but I am assured there is nothing of the kind across the pathway along which he wishes me to ride as fast as possible. Two hundred yards from the spot where this solemn assurance is given, it is only by a lightning-like dismount that I avoid running into the very thing that I was assured did not exist-it was the narrowest possible escape from what might have proved a serious accident.

Riding back toward the advancing party, I point out my good fortune in escaping the tumble. The Shah asks if people ever hurt themselves by falling off bicycles; and the answer that a fall such as I would have experienced by running full speed into the irrigating ditch, might possibly result in broken bones, appeared to strike him as extremely humorous; from the way he laughed I fancy the sending me flying toward the irrigating ditch was one of the practical jokes that he is sometimes not above indulging in. After mounting and forcing my way for a few yards through deep, loose gravel, to satisfy his curiosity as to what could be done in loose ground, I trundle along with him to a small menagerie he keeps at this place. On the way he inquires about the number of wheelmen there are in England and America; whether I am English or American; why they don't use iron tires on bicycles instead of rubber, and many other questions, proving the great interest aroused in him by the advent of the first bicycle to appear in his Capital. The menagerie consists of one cage of monkeys, about a dozen lions, and two or three tigers and leopards. We pass along from cage to cage, and as the keeper coaxes the animals to the bars, the Shah amuses himself by poking them with an umbrella. It was arranged in the original programme that I should accompany them up into their rendezvous in the foot-hills, about a mile beyond the palace, to take breakfast with the party; but seeing the difficulty of getting up there with the bicycle, and not caring to spoil the favorable impression already made, by having to trundle up, I ask permission to take my leave at this point, The request is granted, and the interpreter returns with me to the city - thus ends my memorable bicycle ride with the Shah of Persia.

Soon after my ride with the Shah, the Naib-i-Sultan, the Governor of Teheran and commander-in-chief of the army, asked me to bring the bicycle down to the military maidan, and ride for the edification of himself and officers. Being busy at something or other when the invitation was received, I excused myself and requested that he make another appointment. I am in the habit of taking a constitutional spin every morning; by means of which I have figured as an object of interest, and have been stared at in blank amazement by full half the wonder-stricken population of the city. The fame of my journey, the knowledge of my appearance before the Shah, and my frequent appearance upon the streets, has had the effect of making me one of the most conspicuous characters in the Persian Capital; and the people have bestowed upon me the expressive and distinguishing title of "the aspi Sahib" (horse-of-iron Sahib).

A few mornings after receiving the Naib-i-Sultan's invitation, I happened to be wheeling past the military maidan, and attracted by the sound of martial music inside, determined to wheel in and investigate. Perhaps in all the world there is no finer military parade ground than in Teheran; it consists of something over one hundred acres of perfectly level ground, forming a square that is walled completely in by alcoved walls and barracks, with gaily painted bala-kkanas over the gates. The delighted guards at the gate make way and present arms, as they see me approaching; wheeling inside, I am somewhat taken aback at finding a general review of the whole Teheran garrison in progress; about ten thousand men are manoeuvring in squads, companies, and regiments over the ground.

Having, from previous experience on smaller occasions, discovered that my appearance on the incomprehensible "asp-i-awhan" would be pretty certain to temporarily demoralize the troops and create general disorder and inattention, I am for a moment undetermined about whether to advance or retreat. The acclamations of delight and approval from the nearest troopers at seeing me enter the gate, however, determines me to advance; and I start off at a rattling pace around the square, and then take a zig-zag course through the manoeuvring bodies of men.

The sharp-shooters lying prostrate in the dust, mechanically rise up to gaze; forgetting their discipline, squares of soldiers change into confused companies of inattentive men; simultaneous confusion takes place in straight lines of marching troops, and the music of the bands degenerates into inharmonious toots and discordant squeaks, from the inattention of the musicians. All along the line the signal runs - not "every Persian is expected to do his duty," but "the asp-i-awhan Sahib! the asp-i-awhan Sahib!" the whole army is in direful commotion. In the midst of the general confusion, up dashes an orderly, who requests that I accompany him to the presence of the Commander-in-Chief and staff; which, of course, I readily do, though not without certain misgivings as to my probable reception under the circumstances. There is no occasion for misgivings, however; the Naib-i-Sultan, instead of being displeased at the interruption to the review, is as delighted at the appearance of "the asp-i-anhan, as is Abdul, the drummer-boy, and he has sent for me to obtain a closer acquaintance. After riding for their edification, and answering their multifarious questions, I suggest to the Commander-in-Chief that he ought to mount the Shah's favorite regiment of Cossacks on bicycles. The suggestion causes a general laugh among the company, and he replies: "Yes, asp-i-awhan Cossacks would look very splendid on our dress parade here in the maidan; but for scouting over our rough Persian mountains" - and the Naib-i-Sultan finished the sentence with a laugh and a negative shrug of his shoulders. Two mornings after this I take a spin out on the Doshan Tepe road, and, upon wheeling through the city gate, I find myself in the immediate presence of another grand review, again under the personal inspection of the Naibi-Sultan. Disturbing two grand reviews within "two days is, of course, more than I bargained for, and I would gladly have retreated through the gate; but coming full upon them unexpectedly, I find it impossible to prevent the inevitable result. The troops are drawn up in line about fifty yards from the road, and are for the moment standing at ease, awaiting the arrival of the Shah, while the Commander-in-chief and his staff are indulging in soothing whiffs at the seductive kalian. The cry of "asp-i-awhan Sahib!" breaks out all along the line, and scores of soldiers break ranks, and come running helter-skelter toward the road, regardless of the line-officers, who frantically endeavor to wave them back. Dashing ahead, I am soon beyond the lines, congratulating myself that the effects of my disturbing presence is quickly over; but ere long, I discover that there is no other ridable road back, and am consequently compelled to pass before them again on returning. Accordingly, I hasten to return, before the arrival of the Shah. Seeing me returning, the Naib-i-Sultan and his staff advance to the road, with kalians in hand, their oval faces wreathed in smiles of approbation; they extend cordial salutations as I wheel past. The Persians seem to do little more than play at soldiering; perhaps in no other army in the world could a lone cycler demoralize a general review twice within two days, and then be greeted with approving smiles and cordial salutations by the commander and his entire staff. Through November and the early part of December, the weather in Teheran continues, on the whole, quite agreeable, and suitable for short-distance wheeling; but mindful of the long distance yet before me, and the uncertainty of touching at any point where supplies could be forwarded, I deem it advisable to take my exercise afoot, and save my rubber tires for the more serious work of the journey to the Pacific. There are no green lanes down which to stroll, nor emerald meads through which to wander about the Persian capital, though what green things there are, retain much of their greenness until the early winter months. The fact of the existence of any green thing whatever - and even to a greater extent, its survival through the scorching summer months - depending almost wholly on irrigation, enables vegetation to retain its pristine freshness almost until suddenly pounced upon and surprised by the frost. There is no springy turf, no velvety greensward in the land of the Lion and the Sun. No sooner does one get beyond the vegetation, called into existence by the moisture of an irrigating ditch or a stream, than the bare, gray surface of the desert crunches beneath one's tread. There is an avenue leading part way from the city to the summer residence of the English Minister at Gulaek, that conjures up memories of an English lane; but the double row of chenars, poplars, and jujubes are kept alive by irrigation, and all outside is verdureless desert.

Things are valued everywhere for their scarcity, and a patch of greensward large enough to recline on, a shady tree or shrub, and a rippling rivulet are appreciated in Persia at their proper value- appreciated more than broad, green pastures and waving groves of shade-trees in moister climes. Moreover, there is a peculiar charm in these bright emerald gems, set in sombre gray, be they never so small and insignificant in themselves, that is not to be experienced where the contrast is less marked. Scattered here and there about the stony plain between Teheran and the Elburz foot- hills, are many beautiful gardens-beautiful for Persia-where a pleasant hour can be spent wandering beneath the shady avenues and among the fountains. These gardens are simply patches redeemed from the desert plain, supplied with irrigating water, and surrounded with a high mud wall; leading through the garden are gravelled walks, shaded by rows of graceful chenars. The gardens are planted with fig, pomegranate, almond or apricot trees, grape-vines, melons, etc.; they are the property of wealthy Teheranis who derive an income from the sale of the fruit in the Teheran market. The ample space within the city ramparts includes a number of these delightful retreats, some of them presenting the additional charm of historic interest, from having been the property and, peradventure, the favorite summer residence of a former king. Such a one is an extensive garden in the northeast quarter of the city, in which was situated one of the favorite summer palaces of Fatteh-ali Shah, grandfather of Nasree.

It was chiefly to satisfy my curiosity as to the truth of the current stories regarding that merry monarch, and his. exceedingly novel methods of entertaining himself, that I accepted the invitation of a friend to visit this garden one afternoon. My friend is the owner of a pair of white bull-dogs, who accompany us into the garden. After strolling about a little, we are shown into the summer palace; into the audience room, where we are astonished at the beautiful coloring and marvellously life- like representations in the old Persian frescoing on the walls and ceiling. Depicted in life-size are Fatteh-ali Shah and his courtiers, together with the European ambassadors, painted in the days when the Persian court was a scene of dazzling splendor. The monarch is portrayed as an exceedingly handsome man with a full, black beard, and is covered with a blaze of jewels that are so faithfully pictured as to appear almost like real gems on the walls. It seems strange - almost startling - to come in from contemplating the bare, unlovely mud walls of the city, and find one's self amid the life-like scenes of Fatteh-ali Shah's court; and, amid the scenes to find here and there an English face, an English figure, dressed in the triangular cockade, the long Hessian pigtail, the scarlet coat with fold-back tails, the knee-breeches, the yellow stockings, the low shoes, and the long, slender rapier of a George III. courtier. >From here we visit other rooms, glittering rooms, all mirror-work and white stucco. Into rooms we go whose walls consist of myriads of tiny squares of rich stained glass, worked into intricate patterns and geometrical designs, but which are now rapidly falling into decay; and then we go to see the most novel feature of the garden-Fatteh-ali Shah's marble slide, or shute. Passing along a sloping, arched vault beneath a roof of massive marble, we find ourselves in a small, subterranean court, through which a stream of pure spring water is flowing along a white marble channel, and where the atmosphere must be refreshingly cool even in the middle of summer. In the centre of the little court is a round tank about four feet deep, also of white marble, which can be filled at pleasure with water, clear as crystal, from the running stream. Leading from an upper chamber, and overlapping the tank, is a smooth-worn marble slide or shute, about twenty feet long and four broad, which is pitched at an angle that makes it imperative upon any one trusting themselves to attempt the descent, to slide helplessly into the tank. Here, on summer afternoons, with the chastened daylight peeping through a stained- glass window in the roof, and carpeting the white marble floor with rainbow hues, with the only entrance to the cool and massive marble court, guarded by armed retainers, who while guarding it were conscious of guarding their own precious lives, Fattehali Shah was wont to beguile the hours away by making merry with the bewitching nymphs of his anderoon, transforming them for the nonce into naiads.

There are no nymphs nor naiads here now, nothing but the smoothly-worn marble shute to tell the tale of the merry past; but we obtain a realistic idea of their sportive games by taking the bulldogs to the upper chamber, and giving them a start down the slide. As they clutch and claw, and look scared, and appeal mutely for assistance, only to slide gradually down, down, down, and fall with a splash into the tank at last, we have only to imagine the bull-dogs transformed into Fatteh-ali Shah's naiads, to learn something of the truth of current stories. After we have slid the dogs down a few times, and they begin to realize that they are not sliding hopelessly down to destruction, they enjoy the sport as much as we, or as much as the naiads perhaps did a hundred years ago. That portion of the Teheran bazaar immediately behind the Shah's winter palace, is visited almost daily by Europeans, and their presence excites little comment or attention from the natives; but I had frequently heard the remark that a Ferenghi couldn't walk through the southern, or more exclusive native quarters, without being insulted. Determined to investigate, I sallied forth one afternoon alone, entering the bazaar on the east side of the palace wall, where I had entered it a dozen times before.

The streets outside are sloppy with melting snow, and the roofed passages of the bazaar, being dry underfoot, are crowded with people to an unusual extent; albeit they are pretty well crowded at any time. Most of the dervishes in the city have been driven, by the inclemency of the weather, to seek shelter in the bazaar; these, added to the no small number who make the place their regular foraging ground, render them a greater nuisance than ever. They are encountered in such numbers, that no matter which way I turn, I am confronted by a rag-bedecked mendicant, with a wild, haggard countenance and grotesque costume, thrusting out his gourd alms-receiver, and muttering "huk yah huk!" each in his own peculiar way. The mollahs, with their flowing robes, and huge white turbans, likewise form no inconsiderable proportion of the moving throng; they are almost without exception scrupulously neat and clean in appearance, and their priestly costume and Pharisaical deportment gives them a certain air of stateliness. They wear the placid expression of men so utterly puffed up with the notion of their own sanctity, that their self-consciousness verily scorns to shine through their skins, and to impart to them a sleek, oily appearance. One finds himself involuntarily speculating on how they all manage to make a living; the mollah "toils not, neither does he spin," and almost every other person one meets is a mollah.

The bazaar is a common thoroughfare for anything and everything that can make its way through. Donkey-riders, horsemen, and long strings of camels and pack-mules add their disturbing influence to the general confusion; and although hundreds of stalls are heaped up with every merchantable thing in the city, scores of donkeys laden with similar products are meandering about among the crowd, the venders shouting their wares with lusty lungs. In many places the din is quite deafening, and the odors anything but agreeable to European nostrils; but the natives are not over fastidious. The steam issuing from the cook-shops, from coppers of soup, pillau and sheeps'-trotters, and the less objectionable odors from places where busy men are roasting bazaar-kabobs for hungry customers all day long, mingle with the aromatic contributions from the spice and tobacco shops wedged in between them.

The sleek-looking spice merchant, squatting contentedly beside a pan of glowing embers, smoking kalian after kalian in dreamy contemplation of his assistant waiting on customers, and also occasionally waiting on him to the extent of replenishing the fire on the kalian, is undoubtedly the happiest of mortals. With a kabob-shop on one hand, a sheeps'-trotter-shop on the other, and a bakery and a fruit-stand opposite, he indulges in tid-bits from either when he is hungry. With nothing to do but smoke kalians amid the fragrant aroma of his own spices, and keep a dreamy eye on what passes on around him, his Persian notions of a desirable life cause him to regard himself as blest beyond comparison with those whose avocations necessitate physical exertion. All the shops are open front places, like small fruit and cigar stands in an American city, the goods being arranged on boards or shelving, sloping down to the front, or otherwise exposed to the best advantage, according to the nature of the wares; the shops have no windows, but are protected at night by wooden shutters. The piping notes of the flute, or the sing-song voice of the troubadour or story-teller is heard behind the screened entrance of the tchai-khans, and now and then one happens across groups of angry men quarrelling violently over some trifling difference in a bargain; noise and confusion everywhere reign supreme. Here the road is blocked up by a crowd of idlers watching a trio of lutis, or buffoons, jerking a careless and indifferent-looking baboon about with a chain to make him dance; and a little farther along is another crowd surveying some more lutis with a small brown bear. Both the baboon and the bear look better fed than their owners, the contributions of the onlookers consisting chiefly of eatables, bestowed upon the animals for the purpose of seeing them feed. Half a mile, or thereabouts, from the entrance, an inferior quarter of the bazaar is reached; the crowds are less dense, the noise is not near so deafening, and the character of the shops undergoes a change for the worse. A good many of the shops are untenanted, and a good many others are occupied by artisans manufacturing the ruder articles of commerce, such as horseshoes, pack-saddles, and the trappings of camels. Such articles as kalians, che-bouks and other pipes, geivehs, slippers and leather shoes, hats, jewelry, etc., are generally manufactured on the premises in the better portions of the bazaar, where they are sold. Perched in among the rude cells of industry are cook-shops and tea-drinking establishments of an inferior grade; and the occupants of these places eye me curiously, and call one another's attention to the unusual circumstance of a Ferenghi passing through their quarter. After half a mile of this, my progress is abruptly terminated by a high mud wall, with a narrow passage leading to the right. I am now at the southern extremity of the bazaar, and turn to retrace my footsteps. So far I have encountered no particular disposition to insult anybody; only a little additional rudeness and simple inquisitive-ness, such as might very naturally have been expected. But ere I have retraced my way three hundred yards, I meet a couple of rowdyish young men of the charuadar class; no sooner have I passed them than one of them wantonly delivers himself of the promised insult - a peculiar noise with the mouth; they both start off at a run as though expecting to be pursued and punished. As I turn partially round to look, an old pomegranate vender stops his donkey, and with a broad grin of amusement motions me to give chase. When nearing the more respectable quarter again, I stroll up one of the numerous ramifications leading toward what looks, like a particularly rough and dingy quarter. Before going many steps I am halted by a friendly-faced sugar merchant, with "Sahib," and sundry significant shakes of the head, signifying, if he were me, he wouldn't go up there. And thus it is in the Teheran bazaar; where a Ferenghi will get insulted once, he will find a dozen ready to interpose with friendly officiousness between him and anything likely to lead to unpleasant consequences. On the whole, a European fares better than a Persian in his national costume would in an Occidental city, in spite of the difference between our excellent police regulations and next to no regulations at all; he fares better than a Chinaman does in New York. The Teheran bazaar, though nothing to compare to the world-famous bazaar at Stamboul, is wonderfully extensive. I was under the impression that I had been pretty much all through it at different times; but a few days after my visit to the "slummy " quarters, I follow a party of corpse-bearers down a passage-way hitherto unexplored, to try and be present at a Persian funeral, and they led the way past at least a mile of shops I had never yet seen. I followed the corpse-bearers through the dark passages and narrow alley-ways of the poorer native quarter, and in spite of the lowering brows of the followers, penetrated even into the house where they washed the corpses before burial; but here the officiating mollahs scowled with such unmistakable displeasure, and refused to proceed in my presence, so that I am forced to beat a retreat. The poorer native quarter of Teheran is a shapeless jumble of mud dwellings, and ruins of the same; the streets are narrow passages describing all manner of crooks and angles in and out among them. As I emerge from the vaulted bazaar the sun is almost setting, and the musicians in the bala-khanas of the palace gates are ushering in the close of another day with discordant blasts from ancient Persian trumpets, and belaboring hemispherical kettle- drums. These musicians are dressed in fantastic scarlet uniforms, not unlike the costume of a fifteen century jester, and every evening at sundown they repair to these balakhanas, and for the space of an hour dispense the most unearthly music imaginable. tubes of brass about five feet long, which respond to the efforts of a strong-winded person, with a diabolical basso-profundo shriek that puts a Newfoundland fog-horn entirely in the shade. When a dozen of these instruments are in full blast, without any attempt at harmony, it seems to shed a depressing shadow of barbarism over the whole city. This sunset music is, I think, a relic of very old times, and it jars on the nerves like the despairing howl of ancient Persia, protesting against the innovation from the pomp and din and glamour of her old pagan glories, to the present miserable era of mollah rule and feeble dependence for national existence on the forbearance or jealousy of other nations. Beneath the musicians' gate, and I emerge into a small square which is half taken up by a square tank of water; near the tank is a large bronze cannon. It is a huge, unwieldy piece, and a muzzle-loader, utterly useless to such a people as the Persians, except for ornament, or perhaps to help impress the masses with an idea of the Shah's unapproachable greatness.

It is the special hour of prayer, and in every direction may be observed men, halting in whatever they may be doing, and kneeling down on some outer garment taken off for the purpose, repeatedly touch their foreheads to the ground, bending in the direction of Mecca. Passing beneath the second musicians' gate, I reach the artillery square just in time to see a company of army buglers formed in line at one end, and a company of musketeers at the other. As these more modern trumpeters proceed to toot, the company of musketeers opposite present arms, and then the music of the new buglers, and the hoarse, fog-horn-like blasts of the fantastic tooters on the bala-khanas dies away together in a concerted effort that would do credit to a troop of wild elephants.

When the noisy trumpeting ceases, the ordinary noises round about seem like solemn silence in comparison, and above this comparative silence can be heard the voices of men here and there over the city, calling out "Al-lah-il-All-ah; Ali Ak-bar." (God is greatest; there is no god but one God! etc.) with stentorian voices. The men are perched on the roofs of the mosques, and on noblemen's walls and houses; the Shah has a strong- voiced muezzin that can be heard above all the others. The sun has just set; I can see the snowy cone of Mount Demavend, peeping apparently over the high barrack walls; it has just taken on a distinctive roseate tint, as it oftentimes does at sunset; the reason whereof becomes at once apparent upon turning toward the west, for the whole western sky is aglow with a gorgeous sunset-a sunset that paints the horizon a blood red, and spreads a warm, rich glow over half the heavens.

The moon will be full to-night, and a far lovelier picture even than the glorious sunset and the rose-tinted mountain, awaits anyone curious enough to come out-doors and look. The Persian moonlight seems capable of surrounding the most commonplace objects with a halo of beauty, and of blending things that are nothing in themselves, into scenes of such transcendental loveliness that the mere casual contemplation of them sends a thrill of pleasure coursing through the system. There is no city of the same size (180,000) in England or America, but can boast of buildings infinitely superior to anything in Teheran; what trees there are in and about the city are nothing compared to what we are used to having about us; and although the gates with their short minars and their gaudy facings are certainly unique, they suffer greatly from a close investigation. Nevertheless, persons happening for the first time in the vicinity of one of these gates on a calm moonlight night, and perchance descrying "fair Luna "through one of the arches or between the minars, will most likely find themselves transfixed with astonishment at the marvellous beauty of the scene presented. By repairing to the artillery square, or to the short street between the square and the palace front, on a moonlight night, one can experience a new sense of nature's loveliness; the soft, chastening light of the Persian moon converts the gaudy gates, the dead mud-walls, the spraggling trees, and the background of snowy mountains nine miles away, into a picture that will photograph itself on one's memory forever. On the way home I meet one of the lady missionaries - which reminds me that I ought to mention something about the peculiar position of a Ferenghi lady in these Mohammedan countries, where it is considered highly improper for a woman to expose her face in public. The Persian lady on the streets is enveloped in a shroud-like garment that transforms her into a shapeless and ungraceful-looking bundle of dark-blue cotton stuff. This garment covers head and everything except the face; over the face is worn a white veil of ordinary sheeting, and opposite the eyes is inserted an oblong peep-hole of open needle-work, resembling a piece of perforated card-board. Not even a glimpse of the eye is visible, unless the lady happens to be handsome and coquettishly inclined; she will then manage to grant you a momentary peep at her face; but a wise and discreet Persian lady wouldn't let you see her face on the street - no, not for worlds and worlds!

The European lady with her uncovered face is a conundrum and an object of intense curiosity, even in Teheran at the present day; and in provincial cities, the wife of the lone consul or telegraph employee finds it highly convenient to adopt the native costume, face-covering included, when venturing abroad. Here, in the capital, the wives and daughters of foreign ministers, European officers and telegraphists, have made uncovered female faces tolerably familiar to the natives; but they cannot quite understand but that there is something highly indecorous about it, and the more unenlightened Persians doubtless regard them as quite bold and forward creatures. Armenian women conceal their faces almost as completely as do the Persian, when they walk abroad; by so doing they avoid unpleasant criticism, and the rude, inquisitive gaze of the Persian men. Although the Persian readily recognizes the fact that a Sahib's wife or sister must be a superior person to an Armenian female, she is as much an object of interest to him when she appears with her face uncovered on the street, as his own wives in their highly sensational in-door costumes would be to some of us. In order to establish herself in the estimation of the average Persian, as all that a woman ought to be, the European lady would have to conceal her face and cover her shapely, tight-fitting dress with an inelegant, loose mantle, whenever she ventured outside her own doors. With something of a penchant for undertaking things never before accomplished, I proposed one morning to take a walk around the ramparts that encompass the Persian capital. The question arose as to the distance. Ali Akbar, the head fan-ash, said it was six farsakhs (about twenty-four miles); Meshedi Ab-dul said it was more. From the well-known Persian characteristic of exaggerating things, we concluded from this that perhaps it might be fifteen miles; and on this basis Mr. Meyrick, of the Indo- European Telegraph staff, agreed to bear me company. The ramparts consist of the earth excavated from a ditch some forty feet wide by twenty deep, banked up on the inner side of the ditch; and on top of this bank it is our purpose to encompass the city.

Eight o'clock on the appointed morning finds us on the ramparts at the Gulaek Gate, on the north side of the city. A cold breeze is blowing off the snowy mountains to the northeast, and we decide to commence our novel walk toward the west. Following the zigzag configuration of the ramparts, we find it at first somewhat rough and stony to the feet; on our right we look down into the broad ditch, and beyond, over the sloping plain, our eyes follow the long, even rows of kanaat mounds stretching away to the rolling foothills; towering skyward in the background, but eight miles away, are the snowy masses of the Elburz Range. Forty miles away, at our back, the conical peak of Demavend peeps, white, spectral, and cold, above a bank of snow-clouds that are piled motionless against its giant sides, as though walling it completely off from the lower world. On our left lies the city, a curious conglomeration of dead mud-walls, flat-roofed houses, and poplar-peopled gardens. A thin haze of smoke hovers immediately above the streets, through which are visible the minarets and domes of the mosques, the square, illumined towers of the Shah's anderoon, the monster skeleton dome of the canvas theatre, beneath which the Shah gives once a year the royal tazzia (representation of the tragedy of "Hussein and Hassan"), and the tall chimney of the arsenal, from which a column of black smoke is issuing. Away in the distance, far beyond the confines of the city, to the southward, glittering like a mirror in the morning sun, is seen the dome of the great mosque at Shahabdullahzeen, said to be roofed with plates of pure gold. As we pass by we can see inside the walls of the English Legation grounds; a magnificent garden of shady avenues, asphalt walks, and dark-green banks of English ivy that trail over the ground and climb half-way up the trunks of the trees. A square-turreted clock-tower and a building that resembles some old ancestral manor, imparts to "the finest piece of property in Teheran" a home-like appearance; the representative of Her Majesty's Government, separated from the outer world by a twenty-four-foot brick wall, might well imagine himself within an hour's ride of London.

Beyond the third gate, the character of the soil changes from the stone- strewn gravel of the northern side, to red stoneless earth, and both inside and outside the ramparts fields of winter wheat and hardy vegetables form a refreshing relief from the barren character of the surface generally. The Ispahan gate, on the southern side, appears the busiest and most important entrance to the city; by this gate enter the caravans from Bushire, bringing English goods, from Bagdad, Ispahan, Tezd, and all the cities of the southern provinces. Numbers of caravans are camped in the vicinity of the gate, completing their arrangements for entering the city or departing for some distant commercial centre; many of the waiting camels arc kneeling beneath their heavy loads and quietly feeding. They are kneeling in small, compact circles, a dozen camels in a circle with their heads facing inward. In the centre is placed a pile of chopped straw; as each camel ducks his head and takes a mouthful, and then elevates his head again while munching it with great gusto, wearing meanwhile an expression of intense satisfaction mingled with timidity, as though he thinks the enjoyment too good to last long, they look as cosey and fussy as a gathering of Puritanical grand-dames drinking tea and gossiping over the latest news. Within a mile of the Ispahan gate are two other gates, and between them is an area devoted entirely to the brick-making industry. Here among the clay-pits and abandoned kilns we obtain a momentary glimpse of a jackal, drinking from a ditch. He slinks off out of sight among the caves and ruins, as though conscious of acting an ungenerous part in seeking his living in a city already full of gaunt, half-starved pariahs, who pass their lives in wandering listlessly and hungrily about for stray morsels of offal. Several of these pariahs have been so unfortunate as to get down into the rampart ditch; we can see the places where they have repeatedly made frantic rushes for liberty up the almost perpendicular escarp, only to fall helplessly back to the bottom of their roofless dungeon, where they will gradually starve to death. The natives down in this part of the city greet us with curious looks; they are wondering at the sight of two Ferenghis promenading the ramparts, far away from the European quarter; we can hear them making remarks to that effect, and calling one another's attention. The sun gets warm, although it is January, as we pass the Doshan Tepe and the Meshed gates, remarking as we go past that the Shah's summer palace on the hill to the east compares favorably in whiteness with the snow on the neighboring mountains. As we again reach the Gulaek gate and descend from the ramparts at the place we started, the clock in the English Legation tower strikes twelve.

"How many miles do you call it." asks my companion. "Just about twelve miles," I reply; "what do you make it?" "That's about it," he agrees; "twelve miles round, and eleven gates. We have walked or climbed over the archway of eight of the gates; and at the other three we had to climb off the ramparts and on again." As far as can be learned, this is the first time any Ferenghi has walked clear around the ramparts of Teheran. It is nothing worth boasting about; only a little tramp of a dozen miles, and there is little of anything new to be seen. All around the outside is the level plain, verdureless, except an occasional cultivated field, and the orchards of the tributary villages scattered here and there. In certain quarters of Teheran one happens across a few remaining families of guebres, or fire-worshippers; remnant representatives of the ancient Parsee religion, whose devotees bestowed their strange devotional offerings upon the fires whose devouring flames they constantly fed, and never allowed to be extinguished. These people are interesting as having kept their heads above the overwhelming flood of Mohammedanism that swept over their country, and clung to their ancient belief through thick and thin - or, at all events, to have steadfastly refused to embrace any other. Little evidence of their religion remains in Persia at the present day, except their "towers of silence" and the ruins of their old fire-temples. These latter were built chiefly of soft adobe bricks, and after the lapse of centuries, are nothing more than shapeless reminders of the past. A few miles southeast of Teheran, in a desolate, unfrequented spot, is the guebre "tower of silence," where they dispose of their dead. On top of the tower is a kind of balcony with an open grated floor; on this the naked corpses are placed until the carrion crows and the vultures pick the skeleton perfectly clean; the dry bones are then cast into a common receptacle in the tower. The guebre communities of Persia are too impecunious or too indifferent to keep up the ever-burning-fires nowadays; the fires of Zoroaster, which in olden and more prosperous times were fed with fuel night and day, are now extinguished forever, and the scattering survivors of this ancient form of worship form a unique item in the sum total of the population of Persia.

The head-quarters - if they can be said to have any head-quarters - of the Persian guebres are at Yezd, a city that is but little known to Europeans, and which is all but isolated from the remainder of the country by the great central desert. One great result of this geographical isolation is to be observed to-day, in the fact that the guebres of Yezd held their own against the unsparing sword of Islam better than they did in more accessible quarters; consequently they are found in greater numbers there now than in other Persian cities. Curiously enough, the chief occupation - one might say the sole occupation - of the guebres throughout Persia, is taking care of the suburban gardens and premises of wealthy people. For this purpose I am told guebre families are in such demand, that if they were sufficiently numerous to go around, there would be scarcely a piece of valuable garden property in all Persia without a family of guebres in charge of it. They are said to be far more honest and trustworthy than the Persians, who, as Shiite Mohammedans, consider themselves the holiest people on earth; or the Armenians, who hug the flattering unction of being Christians and not Mohammedans to their souls, and expect all Christendom to regard them benignly on that account. It is doubtless owing to this invaluable trait of their character, that the guebres have naturally drifted to their level of guardians over the private property of their wealthy neighbors.

The costume of the guebre female consists of Turkish trousers with very loose, baggy legs, the material of which is usually calico print, and a mantle of similar material is wrapped about the head and body. Unlike her Mohammedan neighbor, she 'makes no pretence of concealing her features; her face is usually a picture of pleasantness and good-nature rather than strikingly handsome or passively beautiful, as is the face of the Persian or Armenian belle. The costume of the men differs but little from the ordinary costume of the lower-class Persians. Like all the people in these Mohammedan countries, who realize the weakness of their position as a small body among a fanatical population, the Teheran guebres have long been accustomed to consider themselves as under the protecting shadow of the English Legation; whenever they meet a "Sahib" on the street, they seem to expect a nod of recognition.

Among the people who awaken special interest in Europeans here, may be mentioned Ayoob Khan, and his little retinue of attendants, who may be seen on the streets almost any day. Ayoob Khan is in exile here at Teheran in accordance with some mutual arrangement between the English and Persian governments. On almost any afternoon, about four o'clock, he may be met with riding a fine, large chestnut stallion, accompanied by another Afghan on an iron gray. I have never seen them riding faster than a walk, and they are almost always accompanied by four foot-runners, also Afghans, two of whom walk behind their chieftain and two before. These runners carry stout staves with which to warn off mendicants, and with a view to making it uncomfortable for any irrepressible Persian rowdy who should offer any insults. Both Ayoob Khan and his attendants retain their national costume, the main distinguishing features being a huge turban with about two feet of the broad band left dangling down behind; besides this, they wear white cotton pantalettes even in mid-winter. They wear European shoes and overcoats, as though they had profited by their intercourse with Anglo-Indians to the extent of at least shoes and coat. The foot-runners have their legs below the knee bound tightly with strips of dark felt. Judging from outward appearances, Ayoob Khan wears his exile lightly, for his rotund countenance looks pleasant always, and I have never yet met him when he was not chatting gayly with his companion. Of the interesting scenes and characters to be seen every day on the streets of Teheran, their name is legion. The peregrinating tchai-venders, who, with their little cabinet of tea and sugar in one hand, and samovar with live charcoals in the other, wander about the city picking up stray customers, for whom they are prepared to make a glass of hot tea at one minute's notice; the scores of weird-looking mendicants and dervishes with their highly fantastic costumes, assailing you with " huk, yah huk," the barbers shaving the heads of their customers on the public streets - shaving their pates clean, save little tufts to enable Mohammed to pull them up to Paradise; and many others the description and enumeration of which would, of themselves, fill a good-sized volume.