The Ghegs especially, notwithstanding their fierce and lawless character, their superstition, ignorance and predatory propensities, possess some noteworthy qualities rarely found in eastern Europe: simple, brave, faithful, and sometimes capable of devoted attachment, these wild mountaineers make excellent soldiers and trustworthy retainers; they have long furnished a bodyguard to the sultan and, like the Tosks, are much employed as kavasses and attendants at foreign embassies and consulates in the East.
For this decision there were good reasons, for those turbulent sons of the steppe paid no taxes and were much given to brigandage, and their raiding propensities occasionally created international difficulties with the khan of the Crimea and the sultan of Turkey.
As a commercial product spider-silk has been found to be equal, if not superior, to the best silk spun by lepidopterous larvae; but the cannibalistic propensities of spiders, making it impossible to keep more than one in a single receptacle, coupled with the difficulty of getting them to spin freely in a confined space, have hitherto prevented the silk being used on any extensive scale for textile fabrics.
So long as he lived he was a check upon the worst propensities of the king's administration.
In the early part of the 19th century the island was chiefly known to Europeans on account of the wrecks which took place on its coasts, and the dangers that the crews had to run from the cannibal propensities of the aborigines, and the almost equally cruel tendencies of the Chinese.
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