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Attar of roses: revealing Anatolia’s liquid gold and the basis of all fine scents: rosewater. Brian Sewell follows in the footsteps of Alexander the Great, and Molly Izzard looks at Freya Stark’s exploits in Turkey. Plus we go in search of the hay meadows of Bithynia, the painted rug, Orientalist interiors in London and Glasgow, and serve up a bouquet of deliciously fragrant-scented dishes
With his victory against the Persians at the Battle of Issus, fought in 333BC on a plain in southern Turkey, Alexander the Great changed the course of history and started his transformation into demi-god. But his troops endured a hellish march to get there. Critic and art historian Brian Sewelll tried to retrace the Macedonian conqueror’s arduous route to the battlefield. Photographs by David George
Freya Stark made her name with her vivid writing about Persia and the Arab world in the Thirties. After the Second World War, already fifty-nine, she started tracing Alexander the Great’s route through southern Turkey. Molly Izzard, her biographer, recounts the discomforts and discoveries of her five punishing journeys
Linda Kelly tells the story of André Chénier, father of French Romantic poetry, who was born in Galata, the Genoese quarter of Istanbul. Executed during the Paris Terror, Chénier produced some of the most moving documents of the Revolution
In the sweetly scented forests of Turkey’s Aegean coast, bee-keepers and their families harvest the royal jelly once sought after by sultans. The late Rosemary Baldwin, herself a royal jelly enthusiast, revisted the fruitful hives of Samsun Dağı, ancient Mount Mycale
A favourite decorative prop of Orientalists in the 19th century, the Oriental carpet was often painted with extraordinary realism. By Penny Oakley
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