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The hyacinth of Pliny 98 is now thought to be the amethyst of the moderns; and the amethysts of the ancients are now called garnets.
In the Alexandrian version, by this Greek word, are translated the Hebrew ban TECELET, in Exod. xxv. 4; xxvi. 4; xxviii. 31; Numb. iv. 6, 9, 11; 2 Chron. ii. 7, 14, and iii. 14; rendered in our version “ blue;" and wan TACASH,“ badger's skins," in Numb. iv. 6, 8, 10, and Ezek. xvi. 10; and in both instances a colour or tincture 99 is intended.
JASPER. DW JASPEH.
Exod. xxviii. 20; xxxix. 13; and Ezek. xxviii. 13. IAETTIE, Rev. iv. 3, and xxi. 11, 18, 19.
The Greek and Latin name Jaspis, as well as the English Jasper, is plainly derived from the Hebrew, and leaves little room to doubt what species of gem is meant by the original word.
The jasper is usually defined, a hard stone, of a bright, beautiful green colour; sometimes clouded with white, and spotted with red or yellow.
As the Arabic word ratam, which answers to the Hebrew ROTHEM, seems to be explained by the Spanish word retama, probably first introduced into Spain by the Moors; and that word is known to signify broom, Celsius, Hierob. t. i. p. 247, thinks it clear, that it must be the plant referred to, in the places above.
I. In 1 Kings, xix. 4, where our translators say of Elijah, that “ he lay and slept under a juniper-tree,” the Septuagint version retains the word pabop; and in verse 6, simply has putov, “ą plant;" in Job, xxx. 4, peças Guawv, roots of wood; iu Psalm €XX. 4, avaganas Egnussous, coals of the desert. From these differences it should appear that they did not know the true tree in question. And Josephus, not venturing to designate the tree under which Elijah rested, says barely, “ under a certain tree.” Antiq. lib. viii. c. 7. That it was not likely to be the juniper, Celsius strongly contends; the shade of which was considered as noxious.
“ Solet esse gravis cantantibus umbra;
VIRG. Eccl. x. v. 75.
98 “ Ille emicans in amethysto fulgor violaceus, dilutus est in hyacintho.” Plin. N. H. lib. xxxvii. c. 9.
99 Among the laws of Gratian, Valerian, and Theodosius, is this curious one : “ Fucandæ atque distrahendæ purpuræ vel in serico, vel in lana, quæ blatta vel oxyblattea atque hyacinthina dicitur, facultatem nullus possit habere privatus. Sin autem aliquis supradocti muricis vellus vendiderit, fortunarum suarum et capitis sciat se subiturum esse discrimen."
See Joh. Stengel, “ De Junipero Biblico.” Biblioth. Brem. Class vii. fasci. 5. p. 856.
But Virgil speaks of the broom, as supplying browse to the cattle, and shade to the shepherds.
_salices, humilesque genistæ
Georg. ii. v. 434. If it were not that the commentators universally refer to the shade of a tree, we should suppose the word to be the same with Rithmah in the wilderness of Paran, not far from Kadesh-barnea; (Numb. xxxiii. 18.) and that his resting was at a place so called in the desert: a place which had its name from the great number of plants of broom growing in that district.
II. Job complains, ch. xxx. 4, that poor, half-famished fellows despised him, whose condition had been so necessitous, that they were obliged to use “roots of retem for food.” The Chaldee reads it a kind of broom. This, though an unusual and hard diet, was more palatable and nutritious than the ligneous and rancid roots of juniper: and Dioscorides, 1. i. c. 136, observes, that the orobanche, or rape, which grows from the roots of broom, was sometimes eaten raw or boiled, like asparagus. Chappelow, however, says, that “ the herb ratam is of so pernicious a nature, that when the Arabians say, ' ratama alragolo, they understand by it deliquium passus est vir propter esum illius herbæ ;' the influence of it being such, as to make him who eats it faint away. Therefore, when we read that ratam roots were their food, we are to suppose a great deal more than the words express; namely, that their hunger was so violent, as not to refrain even from those roots, which instead of refreshing or nourishing them, affected their spirits to such a degree, as to make them swoon or faint away." Celsius, who defends the reading of broom (genista) suggests an amendment in the translation, by rendering dan LACHMAM, fire, and not “food”;" and it is so rendered Jerem. xlvii. 14. And Mr. Harmer remarks, “I much question whether the roots of the juniper, or of any other tree in those deserts, can afford nourishment to the human body on the one hand; and on the other, I would observe, that the interlineary translation of Arias Montanus supposes that the meaning of the passage is, that they used the roots of the tree in question for fuel. And certainly the same Hebrew letters may as well signify the one as the other—that they used those roots for warming themselves as for bread.
“ The reason, I presume, that has inclined so many to understand the word as our translators have done, has been in part, from not knowing how far the roots of this tree of the deserts might be used for food by these miserable outcasts from society:
? Dany reducere, non ad bnb, quod panem significat, sed ad rad. Oon calefacil; unde infinitivus est Dunn, vel on, quod cum Lit. servili, et affixo, erit bomb. Vide doctissim, Opitium, in Lex. Ebr.
and, on the other hand, that they could not want fire in those sultry deserts for the purpose of warming themselves. But as Irwin complains not unfrequently of the cold of the night, and sometimes of the day, in the deserts on the west side of the Red Sea; so, in an Appendix to the History of the Revolt of Ali Bey, we find the Arabs that attended the author of that Journal, through the Deserts that lay between Aleppo and Bagdat, were considerably incommoded with the cold.”
He adds, that we find in the Travels of Rauwolf, that in the wilderness they gathered dry boughs, stalks of herbs, &c. to make a fire to dress some food with: and that Thevenot mentions the gathering of broom, for boiling their coffee, and warming themselves in the wilderness, going from Cairo to Mount Sinai : and concludes that it is most probable that the roots mentioned in our text were gathered by the poor outcasts for fuel.
III. David observes, Psalm cxx. 4, of the calumniating cruelty of his enemies, that it was “ like arrows of the mighty with coals of juniper,” as our translation renders it. It is indeed true, that juniper abounds with a piercing oil, and makes a smart fire; and Pliny and others affirm that its coals, raked up, will keep glowing a long time: and, admitting this construction, the observation of the Psalmist will emphatically imply, not only the severity, but the lasting fire of malice. Restraining, however, our approbation of the original word to broom, we may recollect that Geirus declares, that the retama (genista) “ ligniis aliis vehementius scintillet, ardeat, ac strideat,”-sparkles, burns, and crackles more vehemently than other wood.”
Mr. Harmer concludes his criticisms upon this perplexing subject, with the following observation : " How happy would a more perfect knowledge of the Natural History of the East
KID. SO GEDI.
of the goat. Among the Hebrews the kid was reckoned a great delicacy; and appears to have been served for food in preference to the lamb. See Goat.
The village of Engedi, situate in the neighbourhood of Jericho, derives its name from the Hebrew word YY AIN, a fountain, and 97) GEDI, a kid. It is suggested by the situation among lofty rocks, which, overhanging the valleys, are very precipitous. A fountain of pure water rises near the summit, which the inhabitants called Engedi, the fountain of the goat, because it is hardly accessible to any other creature.
KITE. TX AJAH.
Bochart supposes this to be the bird which the Arabians call the ja-jao, from its note; and which the ancients named “ lon," the merlin; a bird celebrated for its sharp-sightedness.
This faculty is referred to in Job, xxviii. 7, where the word is rendered “ vulture.” As a noun masculine plural, O'N, in Isai. xiii. 22; xxxiv.
and Jerem. I. 39, Bochart says that jackals are intended : but, by the several contexts, particularly the last, it may well mean a kind of unclean bird, and so be the same with the above. See GLEDE.
The bird intended by the Hebrew name in these places is undoubtedly the hoopoe; a very beautiful, but most unclean and filthy species of birds.
The Septuagint renders it ETOTA, and the Vulgate upupa; which is the same with the Arabian interpreters. The Egyptian name of the bird is kukuphah, and the Syrian, kikuphah; which approach the Hebrew DUKIPHATH. It may have its name from the noise or cry it makes, which is very remarkable, and may be heard a great way.
LEAD. ODY OPHRETH.
Occ. Exod. xv, 10; Numb. xxxi. 22; Job, xix. 24; Jerem. vi. 29; Ezek, xxii. 18; xxvii. 12; Zech. v. 7, 8.
A inineral of a bluish white colour. It is the softest next to gold, but has no great tenacity, and is not in the least sonorous. It is mentioned with five other species of metal, Numb. xxxi. 22; and there is no doubt but that this is the meaning of the word; so the Septuagint render it throughout, μολυβδος or μολιβος.
Our translators render Job, xix. 23, 24,“ Oh that my words were now WRITTEN! Oh that they were PRINTED in a book! that they were GRAVEN with an iron PEN and lead, in the rock for ever!” There is in our translation, a strange confusion, writing, printing, and engraving. Printing is a modern invention, and pens (from penna, a feather), a modern instrument for writing. An iron feather, quill or pén, must be a great impropriety of translation. Michaelis 3 says that he does not understand what the Hebrew word means, which is here translated “ lead.” The passage has been the subject of much criticism. The remarks of Mr. Costard are very ingenious. They are as follows:
“ The Vulgate renders the word ny by plumbi lamina, from whence it is apparent what opinion the authors of that version were of. The LXX have Monedos, and our English lead. But if, indeed, noy be rightly translated lead, it must mean the materials on which the writing was made; for lead is of too soft a substance to be used in the nature of a style. What time the custom of writing upon lead began, is uncertain, but it is probable not till late. The oldest inscriptions were on stones,
3 Prælect. in Lowth, p. 211.
4 Observations on the Book of Job, p. 22.
as the law at Mount Sinai, Exod. xxiv. 12, or on stones plastered over, as were those in Gilgal, Deut. xxvii. 2. Lead and brass, and the like, may be supposed not to come into use till commerce and literature, and the politer arts of life made writing more frequent and necessary. That lead was of use in the Augustan age, appears from Tacitus", and that it continued some little time after, is asserted by other authors 6; but how long before that it had been introduced is not so clear. Pausanius says, that he saw in Boeotia Hesiod's Epya wrote on lead [p. 306], but greatly injured by time. Pausanias lived under the emperor Adrian, about a hundred and seventeen years after Christ. So that the writing might not have been much older than Augustus Cæsar; the very dampness of the place where he describes it to have been, contributing not a little to its decay.
'Tis true, indeed, the custom of writing upon lead might have been of more ancient date in the East, at least for any thing that we can know to the contrary, could we be certain that the country thereabouts produceth any lead. It may not be improbable, therefore, that nay in this place, may signify the instru. ment, or style made use of; and that the y vau joined to it, should be rendered or, the rock being the thing on which Job wishes his words to be wrote,
That nooy was some heavy substance, appears from Exod. xv. 10, where Pharaoh and his army are said to have sunk to the bottom of the Red Sea nay. But in order to this being lead, 'tis necessary that it should be not only heavy but ductile, properties very distinct. In Zechariah, v. 8, we meet with noryn,
x the stone of Ophereth. By this, one would be apt to think that it means some hard stone, sharpened by nature or art, and so fit for engraving on a rock. That no1y OPHERETH included under it the notion of hardness or strength, appears yet in the Arabic verb aphar; and that such stones were used by the ancients instead of knives and tools for engraving, may be learnt from Moses (Exod. iv. 25], Jeremiah [xvii. 1), and Herodotus [p. 119, Edit. Gronov. and p. 405).
“ But in which of these senses soever we take the word, it is plain that our author was acquainted with the manner of writing upon wax or skins, or other materials at least, more manageable
5 Nomen Germanici plumbeis tabulis insculptum, Annal. lib. ii. c. 69. Prius autem quam digrediamur ab Ægypto (says Pliny, N. H. 1. xiii. c. 11), et Papyri natura dicetur, cum chartæ usu maxime humanitas vitæ constet et memoria. Et hanc Alexandri Magni victoria repertam, autor est M. Varro, condita in Ægypto Alexandria, ante non fuisse chartarum usum. Palmarum foliis primo scriptatum, deinde quarundam arborum libris. Postea publica monumenta, plumbeis voluminibus, mox et privata, linteis confici cæpta aut ceris.".
Pineda, on this place of Job, mentions some leaden books of Ctesiphon and Cæcilius, disciples of St. James, and written with an iron style. And Eutychius, speaking of the Seven Sleepers, as they are commonly called, says, the governor wrote an account of them in lead. Ann. Alex. p. 390.