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The amber is a hard inflammable bitumen. When rubbed it is highly endowed with that remarkable property called electricity; a word which the moderns have formed from the Greek name EMENT POV. But the ancients had also a mixed metal of fine copper and silver, resembling the amber in colour, and so called by the same name.
St. Jerom, Theodoret, St. Gregory, and Origen think that, in the above cited passages from Ezekiel, a precious and highly polished metal is meant. Bochart and Le Clerc consider it the same as the electrum. It is evident that our translators could not suppose it to mean the natural amber, for that, being a bituminous substance, becomes dim as soon as it feels the fire, and soon dissolves and consumes; nor could they intend crystal, as some have supposed, because it bore the same name among the ancients 30; for that substance would not long stand the fire, and while it did would soon lose its transparency, and instead of glowing would become opaque. The metal so celebrated for its beautiful lustre is most probably intended. As Ezekiel prophesied among the Chaldeans, after the captivity of king Jehoiachim, so here, as in other instances, he seems to have used a Chaldee word ; and, considered as such, brown may be derived from wna (copper) dropping the initial a, and Chald. 33a (gold as it comes from the mine); and so denote either a metal mixed of copper and gold, as the os pyropum mentioned in the ancient Greek and Roman writers, and thus called from its fiery colour; and the noted as corinthum; or else it may signify xannos xeuroeidus, which Aristotle describes as very brilliant, and of which it is probable the cups of Darius mentioned by him were made, and the two vessels of fine brass, precious as gold, of which we read Ezra, viii. 27 31. See BRASS.
AMETHYST, robok AHALMAH. Exod. xxviii. 19, and xxix. 12. and once in the N. T. Rev. xxi. 20. AMEMUOTOS.
A transparent gem of a colour which seems composed of a strong blue and deep red; and, according as either prevails, affording different tinges of purple, sometimes approaching to violet, and sometimes even fading to a rose colour 32.
The stone called amethyst by the ancients was evidently the same with that now generally known by this name; which is far from being the case with regard to some other gems. The oriental is the hardest, scarcest, and most valuable.
It was the ninth stone in the pectoral of the high-priest 33, and is mentioned as the twelfth in the foundations of New Jerusalem.
30 Hdupans nextpos deŽETAI. Dion. PERIEG. V. 317.
31 See some learned illustrations of this subject in Bochart, Hieroz. v. 3. p. 781. and Scheuchzer, Phys. Sacr. v, 7. p. 343.
32 Salmasius, in Exercit. Plinianæ, p. 563.
33 Hillier, Tr. de xii. gemmis in Pectorali Pontif. Hebr. p. 59. Braunius de Vestitu Sacerd. Hebr. ii. c. 16. p. 709.
ANISE. An annual umbelliferous plant, the seeds of which have an aromatic smell, a pleasant warm taste, and a carminative quality. But by Avydov, Matthew, xxjii. 23. the pill is meant. Our translators seem to have been first misled by a resemblance of the sound. No other versions have fallen into the mistake. The Greek of anise is Avisov; but of dill, avydov.
ANT. OBOJ NEMALA. In the Turkish and Arabic, neml. Occ. Prov. vi. 6. xxx. 25.
A little insect, famous from all antiquity for its social habits, its economy, unwearied industry, and prudent foresight. It has offered a pattern of commendable frugality to the profuse, and of unceasing diligence to the slothful.
Solomon calls the ants “ exceeding wise, for though a race not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer." He therefore sends the sluggard to these little creatures, to learn wisdom, foresight, care, and diligence.
“ Go to the Ant; learn of its ways, be wise:
The Septuagint and Arabic versions add a direction to learn of the labours of the Bee the lessons, the effects, the rewards, and the sweets of industry. This is not in the Hebrew text; but, perhaps, being written in the margin of some copy of the Septuagint as a parallel instance, was, by some unskilful copier, put into the text of the Greek version, whence the Arabic has taken it. This must have been very early, for Clemens of Alexandria makes mention of it 35.
That the Ant hoarded up grains of corn against winter for its sustenance, was very generally believed by the ancients 36, though modern naturalists seem to question the fact 37. Thus Horace says,
Sat. I. 1. i. v. 33.
34 Devens' Paraphrase.
35 Stromat. ), i. p. 286. 36 Plin. l. x. c. 72, and 1. xi. c. 30. Ælian, 1. ii. c. 25. 1. vi. c. 43. Ovid, Metam. I. viii. v. 624. Virgil. Georg. i. v. 184. Æn. iv. v. 402.
37 Boerner, Sammlungen aus der Naturgeschichte, p. 1. p. 181.
For future want : yet, when the stars appear
On the fair stores industrious summer gives.” The most learned Bochart, in his Hierozoicon 38, has displayed his vast reading on this subject, and has cited passages from Pliny, Lucian, Ælian, Zoroaster, Origen, Bazil, and Epiphanius, the Jewish Rabbins and Arabian naturalists, all concurring in opinion that ants cut off the heads of grain, to prevent their germinating: and it is observable that the Hebrew name of the insect is derived from the verb Sri NAMAL, which signifies to cut off, and is used for cutting off ears of corn, Job, xxiv, 24. To the authorities above quoted we may add the following testimony from a letter on this curious subject published by the French Academy, and afterwards inserted by Mr. Addison in the Guardian, No. 156, as a narrative, says he, of undoubted credit and authority. “ The corn which is laid up by ants would shoot under ground, if these insects did not take care to prevent it. They, therefore, bite off all the germs before they lay it up; and therefore the corn that has lain in their cells will produce nothing. Any one may make the experiment, and even see that there is no germ in their corn.”
Without insisting, however, upon this disputed point, I would remark that if we consider the two texts in the book of Proverbs, there is not the least intimation in them of their laying up corn in store against winter. In chapter vi. 8. it is said, She provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. For, though the former verb 720 HEKIN signifies to prepare, or dispose in order, and the latter 7IN AGAR, to collect, or gather together; and in the only two places where I find it occur besides, is used for gathering in summer, as Prov. x. 5. and for gathering in the vintage, Deut. xxviii. 39. yet the expression in the text necessarily means no more than that they collect their food in its proper season. Nor is there any thing else declared, chap. xxx. v. 25. So that all which may be fairly concluded from Scripture is, that they carry food for themselves into their repositories, to serve them as long as it will keep good, or they shall need it. That they do this against winter can only be determined by examining into the fact. This has been done with very great diligence, and it appears that they eat not at all in the winter, and have no stores laid in of any sort of food. The opinion, there. fore, of their laying in magazines against winter seems to have been grafted on these scriptures, rather than found in them; and this from a conclusion naturally enough made, from observing their wonderful labour and industry in gathering their food in the summer, supposing that this must be to provide against winter, After all, great part of their labour, which may have been be
38 Tom. iji. p. 478.
stowed in other services, might easily be mistaken, by less accurate observers, for carrying food. It may be thought sufficient for the purpose if it were in Solomon's time but a popular notion. The Scriptures are not to be considered as unerring guides in NATURAL, although they are in MORAL and divINE matters 39. : The following remarks are from the Introduction to Entomology,” by Kirby and Spence, vol. ii. p. 46. ''
.66 Till the manners of exotic ants are more accurately explored, it would, however, be rash to affirm that no ants have magazines of provisions; for, although, during the cold of our winters in this country, they remain in a state of torpidity, and have no need of food, yet in warmer regions, during the rainy seasons, when they are probably confined to their nests; a store of provisions may be necessary for them. Even in northern climates, against wet seasons, they may provide in this way for their sustenance and that of the young brood, which, as Mr. Smeatham observes, are very voracious, and cannot bear to be long deprived of their food; else why do ants carry worms, living insects, and many other such things into their nests ? Solomon's lesson to the sluggard has been generally adduced as a strong confirmation of the ancient opinion: it can, however, only relate to the species of a warm climate, the habits of which are probably different from those of a cold one; so that his words, as commonly interpreted, may be perfectly correct and consistent with nature, and yet be not at all applicable to the species that are indigenous to Europe. But I think, if Solomon's words are properly considered, it will be found that this interpretation has been fathered upon them, rather than fairly deduced from them. He does not affirm that the ant, which he proposes to his sluggard as an example, laid up in her magazine stores of grain; but that, with considerable prudence and foresight, she makes use of the proper seasons to collect a supply of provision sufficient for her purposes. There is not a word in them implying that she stores up grain or other provision. She prepares her bread, and gathers her food, namely, such food as is suited to her--in summer and harvest—that is, when it is most plentiful; and thus shows her wisdom and pru. dence by using the advantages offered to her. The words, thus interpreted, which they may be without any violence, will apply to the species among us as well as to those that are not indigenous."
As this insect is such a favourite both with naturalists and moralists, I refer to the following authors for much curious and instructive information respecting its habits and economy. Addison's Guardian, Nos. 156, 157. Smeatham's Account of the Termites of Africa, inserted in the Philosophical Transactions, v. lxxi. p. 139. Delany's Sermon on Prov. vi. 6, 7, 8. Stennett on the Social Duties, p. 356. Toogood on the Seasons, p. 19. and Scheuchzer, v. vii. p. 105.
39 Durell on Psal. cxxi. and Proy, vi. 6.
APE. 12 KOPH. Persic keibi and kubbi; Greek nyoos and nujnos, and Roman cephus. Occ. 1 Kings x. 22. 2 Chron. ix. 21.
This animal seems to be the same with the ceph of the Ethiopians, of which Pliny speaks, l. viii. c. 19. At the games given by Pompey the Great (says he), where shown cephs brought from Ethiopia, which had their fore feet like a human hand, their hind legs and feet also resembled those of a man. “Iidem ex Æthiopia quos vocant cephos, quorum pedes posteriores pedibus humanis et cruribus, priores manibus fuere similes.” Solinus, speaking of Ethiopia, says that Cæsar the Dictator, at the games of the circus, had shown the monsters of that country, cephs, whose hands and feet resembled those of mankind. “ Iisdem ferme temporibus (quibus circenses exhibuit Cæsar Dictator) illinc exhibita monstra sunt. Cephos appellant, quorum poste. riores pedes crure et vestigio humanos artus mentiuntur priores hominum manus referunt.” The same oriental name appears in the monkeys called KHITIEN, in the Mosaic pavement found at Præneste, and inscribed near the figure there delineated 40,
The scripture says that the fleet of Solomon brought apes, or rather monkeys, &c. from Ophir. The learned are not agreed respecting the situation of that country; but Major Wilford says that the ancient name of the river Landi sindh in India was Cophes41. May it not have been so called from the DJ's coPhim inhabiting its banks ?
We now distinguish this tribe of creatures into (1.) Monkeys, those with long tails; (2.) Apes, those with short tails; (3.) Baboons, those without tails.
Lichtenstein attributes the 917 of the Hebrews to the class of monkeys called Diana in the system of Linnæus 42.
In Deut. xxxii. 17. Moses reproaches the Israelites with sacrificing to devils, to gods whom they knew not, gods newly come up, whom their fathers feared not. The Hebrew word D'IV SADIM, in this place, has some resemblance to the Arabic saadan, the name of the Baboon 43.
The ancient Egyptians are said to have worshiped Apes. They are still adored in many places in India. Mafleus describes a magnificent temple of the Ape, with a portico for receiving victims sacrificed to it, supported by seven hundred columns 44.
“ With glittering gold and sparkling gems they shine,
40 A drawing of this most curious relique of antiquity may be seen in Shaw's Travels, p. 423, with a learned explanation, and a history of it is given in Montfaucon's Antiq. vol. xiv. fol.
41 Asiatic Researches, v. vi. p. 455. 42 Lichtenstein. De Simiarum quotquot veteribus innotuerunt, formis earumque noininibus. Hamb. 1791. p. 78.
43 The Arabic version of Deut. xxxii. 17. has shAATAN, or shatan, from the root SAATANA, obstinate, refractory. Whence our appellative SATAN. 44 Hist. Iod. lib. 1.