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Zenobia - or, the Fall of Palmyra by William Ware
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Zenobia; or, The Fall of Palmyra


William Ware

Letter I.

It is with difficulty that I persuade myself, that it is I who am sitting
and writing to you from this great city of the East. Whether I look upon
the face of nature, or the works of man, I see every thing different from
what the West presents; so widely different, that it seems to me, at
times, as if I were subject to the power of a dream. But I rouse myself,
and find that I am awake, and that it is really I, your old friend and
neighbor, Piso, late a dweller upon the Coelian hill, who am now basking
in the warm skies of Palmyra, and, notwithstanding all the splendor and
luxury by which I am surrounded, longing to be once more in Rome, by the
side of my Curtius, and with him discoursing, as we have been wont to do,
of the acts and policy of the magnificent Aurelian.

But to the purpose of this letter, which is, in agreement with my
promise, to tell you of my fortunes since I parted from you, and of my
good or ill success, as it may be, in the prosecution of that affair which
has driven me so far from my beloved Rome. O, Humanity! why art thou so
afflicted? Why have the immortal gods made the cup of life so bitter? And
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