When they first arrived at the citadel, the exiles were taken to rooms adjoining the barracks square. The floor of one of the rooms was covered in mud, and the heat and humidity, combined with the stench of the prison, so overwhelmed Bahíyyih Khánum that she fainted.
"So filthy and brackish was the water in the pool of the courtyard that no one could drink it. Three loaves of black and salty bread were assigned to each, which they were later permitted to exchange, when escorted by guards to the market, for two of better quality. Subsequently they were allowed a mere pittance as substitute for the allotted dole of bread. All fell sick, except two, shortly after their arrival. Malaria, dysentery, combined with the sultry heat, added to their miseries."(18)