Diplomatic gardens in Istanbul Turkey

Previous Page - Next Page

530. Buyuk-dere contains the country-houses of the Franks of Pera, and of most of the European ministers. The facades of these mansions are most of them in the European taste, and range along an extensive strand, a mile and a half long, in front of the sea. This strand is the evening promenade of the inhabitants and visitors. Behind the mansions are large gardens; with groves of plane, lime, and walnut-trees, overshadowing parterres of flowers and valuable plants. The meadow or plain (the kalos agros of the Byzantines, which lies at the bottom of the bay) is mown into a smooth turf, and is a favourite resort of parties from the village, who take coffee and sherbet under the shade of a large plane, or rather a clump of seven of these trees growing from one root, commemorated in Les Jardins of Delille. On every side this fine valley is embanked by high and wavy acclivities covered with verdure; and on the west and north it is enclosed with the woods of Belgrade, running like a park plantation to the water's edge. (Hobhouse's Travels in Albania, &c., vol. ii. p. 868.)