Miss Tully: Letters from Tripoli during the plague epidemic of 1785-6 January to June


The plague slowly comes to an end.

 January 20th, 1786

On the calm resignation of the Muslims to their fate, simply saying “maktub – it has been written”

January 30th, 1786

On the shortage of boards for coffins and their exorbitant price; the two daughters of one noble lady die before their marriages, with descriptions of their clothes, the ceremonies and the beauty of their tombs.

February 10th, 1786

Miss Tully was horrified by the institution of slavery and tells several stories of the suffering, of which this is one.

April 10th, 1786 and May 2nd, 1786

Still imprisoned on account of the plague, a few Moorish domestic scenes are all I can at present give you…..

Amnani, the Greek wife of Hadgi Abderrahman, the ambassador to England, and her attendants move into the house next-door belong to the Tullys. The women socialize from their terraces and Miss Tully describes their beautiful clothes and various amusements.

June 2nd, 1786

The threat of Bedouin raids.

June 18th, 1786

Our house, the last that remained in quarantine, opened on the 16th, but this happy event seems marked by a succession of alarms….

The Ottoman Sultan, theoretically overlord of the Bey, sends the Captain Pacha to check on what seems to be the serious mismanagement of the state.

Miss Tully: Letters written during a ten years, residence at the Court of Tripoli, 1783-1795

Hardinge Simpole, 2009, pp.123-137

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