and naked peasant to the highest official or religious personage, like the Shereef Said Hakim, he reached Khartoum on the 3rd May. He did not delay an hour in the commencement of his task. His first public announcement was to abolish the courbash, to remit arrears of taxation, and to sanction a scheme for pumping the river water into the town. The Kadi or mayor read this address in the public square; the people hailed it with manifestations of pleasure, and Gordon himself, carried away by his enthusiasm for his work, compresses the long harangue into a brief text: "With the help of God, I will hold the balance level."
But the measures named were not attended by any great difficulty in their inception or execution. They were merely the preliminaries to the serious and risky disbandment of the Bashi-Bazouks, and the steps necessary to restrict and control, not merely the trade in, but the possession of, slaves. As General Gordon repeatedly pointed out, his policy and proceedings were a