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been taken to improve or to create roads.
In summer, it is true, communications are
tolerably easy; for the soil, which is in
great part clayey, is sufficiently hard to
allow of the passage of waggons, and the
plains are open, or only divided by slight
swells and easy valleys. But when winter
comes on, travelling is difficult in all places;
and, in some, perfectly impossible. All trade
is stopped during five months, and the inhabitants
of each village sink into a sort of
marmot state of existence, without news of
the rest of the world. When spring appears,
and the vast expanses of mud by which they
are surrounded dry in the sun that peers
over the Balkans, they are revived, as it were,
to activity; and learn, in the shape of confused
rumours, that changes have taken
place that may affect them; who claims them
as subjects; who has fought or negotiated to
keep or acquire the right of property over

Many proposals have been made, hitherto
without effect, to open one or two good
roads through the country. The one that
seems to be most wanted, is between Routchuk
and Varna, which would prodigiously
shorten the communication between
Transylvania, Hungary, Servia, and the whole of
Central Europe, with the Black Sea. The
Danube, which looks so well in maps, is a
false friend. Its mouth is often stopped up,
and during a great portion of the year its
waters are frozen. In some mild winters
navigation is possible; but it often happens
that traders, lured on by the appearance of
fine weather, have been caught with perishable
cargoes in the ice, and have remained
locked up for a long period, to their great
discomfort and detriment. Many captains
and merchants, therefore, cease all speculation
as soon as the bad season begins;
commerce languishes, and a great part of the
year is lost. We have before us a table of
the freezing of the Danube from the winter of
1836–37 to the winter of 1850–51. In 1849–50
the waters froze on the fourth of December,
and remained bound until the twenty-third
of March. In 1836–37 the river froze only for
twenty days, from the seventh to the twenty-eighth
of February. In 1842, 1845, and 1850
it did not freeze at all. It will be seen, therefore,
that nothing is more uncertain than the
character of the Danube during the winter
months. It was once proposed to dig a canal
from Tschernavoda to Kostenji, where
geographers well acquainted with maps used to
place an ancient bed of the Danube; but it
was found that a range of hills of some
height would have to be tunnelled. The
plan now most in favour, and which will
probably be carried out in better times, is that
of a railroad from Routchuk to Varna. All
the provinces of that eastern part of the
world seem destined, in this century, to see
a return of the commercial activity and
splendour which once distinguished them.

The social condition of the Bulgarian people
has undergone a considerable change of late,
in consequence of the removal of certain
obstacles that existed to their progress. History
will have a very interesting task, when it
undertakes to describe the steps by which nations
whose existence had almost been forgotten
began to re-appear upon the scene. Since
the Tanzimat education has begun to spread
its blessings throughout all the provinces of
the Turkish empire, in which were to be
found races capable of receiving it. Some
rich Bulgarians have recently established at
Constantinople a college and a printing-office,
from which issues a political and literary
journal, the object of which is to introduce
ideas of civilization into Bulgaria. The
towns of Hellenic origin have received an
impulse from other quarters, so that there is
a general development which cannot but
produce its fruit at no distant period.

The Bulgarians by their nature are not so
well fitted to receive civilization, or, rather,
to work it out themselves, as many
neighbouring families; for example, the
Wallachians and Servians. At least, this is the
impression produced by their conduct of late
years. They are good, humane, and
economical; and, perhaps, the most industrious of
all the Christian peoples of the east; but
they appear to be inclined to submission, and
to the fear of power by whomsoever
possessed. However, some observers, who had
opportunities of watching them during their
partial insurrections in eighteen hundred and
forty-one and in eighteen hundred and fifty
say that, under cover of their apparent
simplicity, there still remains a good deal of the
fierce and warlike spirit that distinguished
their ancestors a thousand years ago. As a
rule they are fond of pleasure and recreation.
In Bulgaria Proper all the popular songs are
sentimental or jovial. The members of the
same family, it is true, who inhabit Macedonia,
have adopted the heroic songs of the Servians.

The Turkish government is not without
sagacity in adapting its forms of administration
to the various nations under its rule.
Bulgaria is now divided into two great
pashalics; that of Widdin and that of
Silistria. Each is administered by a Mushir
or Pacha of three tails, who has under his
orders two Mirmadars, or Pachas of two tails.
Next in authority to these are the Mudirs,
or Ayanis, or lieutenants, one to each district.
The Mushir of Widdin lives in that city.
We believe the office is still held by the
famous Hassein Pacha, who commanded the
regular troops of the Sultan on the day of
the destruction of the Janissaries. He has
many of the qualities of the old Turk; but,
by long intercourse with Europeans, has
acquired many of their ideas. The Pacha of
Silistria has recently fixed his residence at
Routchuk, because the Austrian steamer
from Vienna stops at that city to unload its
cargo for the interior of Bulgaria.