Page:Ravished Armenia.djvu/223

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plain the officers gave two, or sometimes three, for a single donkey. Thus they collected a large herd of donkeys, which probably were needed by the army.

In another day after this remnant of the Christians of Marash joined us, we came into sight of Ourfa. We were ordered to camp close to an artificial lake—such a lake as often is found outside Moslem cities. The leaders of our zaptiehs rode into the city for instructions. Soon Turks, in long white coats, came out of the city to look at us. When they saw that ours was a party of almost all younger women, with girl children still left, they spread the news in Ourfa, and in a little while dozens of Turks came out in little groups of four and five.

They tried to persuade our zaptiehs to let them carry away with them the young women and children they wanted. The zaptiehs would not permit this, however, unless they were paid what was then considered high prices for Christian women. They said they had brought us this far, and now they intended to profit—that they had only permitted us to live because they hoped to get “good prices” for the choicest of us in the Ourfa market.

The Turks did not want to pay the high prices, and the zaptiehs would not trade with them. The zaptiehs said there was a good market in Ourfa for pretty Armenian women, and they preferred to get the Mutassarif’s permission to hunt purchasers there who