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RAVISHED ARMENIA

Minor, maintained after an ancient custom of the Turks as stopping places for caravans. We were told we could rest there for the remainder of the day and night, but when we drew near the khan a party of soldiers came out and halted us. We could not go to the building, our guards were told, as it was occupied by travelers being taken north to Shabin Kara-Hissar, a large city in the district of Trebizond near the Black Sea.

Soon we learned who these travelers were. They were a company of “turned” Armenians, as the Turks call Christians who have given up their religion. The company was from Keban-Maden, a city thirty miles south. The company arrived at the khan that morning, having traveled twenty miles the day before.

The zaptiehs who guarded our party and the soldiers who had come from Keban-Maden with the others, soon became friends and talked earnestly with each other. They had forbidden us to go near the khan, and we wondered why the “turned” Christians were not to be seen. Presently a slim young girl crept out of the house and, unseen by the soldiers, crawled along the ground until she came to the outskirts of our camp. She was naked and her feet were cut and bruised.

She was a bride, she said, who had “turned” with her young husband. The Mutassarif of Keban-Maden