THE CITY OF THE KHALIF.
" CORDOVA," says an old Arab writer, "is the Bride of Andalusia. To her belong all the beauty and the ornaments that delight the eye or dazzle the sight. Her long line of Sultans form her crown of glory; her necklace is strung with the pearls which her poets have gathered from the ocean of language; her dress is of the banners of learning, well knit together by her men of science; and the masters of every art and industry are the hem of her garments." So did the Oriental historian clothe the city he loved with the farfetched imagery of the East. Cordova, under the rule of the Great Khalif, was indeed a capital to be proud of; and except perhaps Byzantium, no city of Europe could compare with her in the beauty of her buildings, the luxury and refinement of her life, and the learning and accomplishments of her inhabitants. When we remember that the sketch we are about to extract from the records of Arabian writers, concerning the glories of Cordova, relate to the tenth century, when our Saxon ancestors dwelt in wooden hovels and trod upon dirty straw, when our language was unformed, and such accomplishments as reading and writing were almost confined to a few monks, we can____________________