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If our Monsieur had refer'd us to any Arabick Writer, in whom we might have found the word Alabaster us'd as the name of that kind of Marble; or if he had produced any authority for it, we might have listen’d to the account that he here gives us : but since he produces none, it is as easily rejected as it is confidently affirmed. Yea, he himself foon abates of his confidence; for tho in the words which I have transcribed he affirms so positively that it is an Arabian name, yet in the very next words he tells us that he thinks so, The reason (says he) why I think it had an Arabian
But let us hear the Reason which moved him to think so, or rather Reasons, for he gives us two instead of one. The former is, because it begins with al the Arabian Article; the latter, because it was cut out of the Arabian Mountains, and was first brought from thence. And must not every one corifefs that these are very cogent Reasons ?. Especially when he observes how much our Monsieur troubles himself to prove this, that Alabaster was cut out of the Arabian Mountains, and first brought from thence, but in vain. He tells us that Pliny, 1.36. c. 7. says that the Ancients thought
that Alabaster grew in the Mountains of Arabia, and no where else; but he himself answers this in the very next words, telling us, that the same Pliny a little after says, that it grows about Thebes in Egypt, and Damascus in Syria. This Answer is sufficient of it self; but we may observe further, that tho'our Monsieur renders it Alabafter grew in the Mountains of Arabia, in Pliny it is Onychem ; so that if the Onyx be not the same with Alabaster, our Monsieur hath not rightly translated him. Now Pliny himself seems to me to make it doubtful whether it be the same, when he says, L. 36. c. 8. Hunc aliqui lapidem alabaftriten vocant. We see he only says Aliqui, they were only some that call'd it so. But we need not trouble our selves about it whether they be the same or no; For as to the Onyx, Pliny tells us that there wanted not some who made it to grow in Germany, which is against those that thought it to grow only in Arabia. And as to the lapis alabastrites, the fame Pliny acquaints us, that it grows about Thebes in Egypt, and Damascus in Syria, and in Carmania, and India in Afia, &c. but he makes no mention of Arabia.
Thus far our Monsieur is little help’d by Pliny ; but he goes on and says, that there was a City somewhere between the
Nile and the Red Sca, er in Egyptian Arabia, called for that reafon 'Anáßaspe, which is mention'dby Pliny, l. 5. c.9. and by Ptolomy l. 4. c.5. who places it in the Próvince of Cynopolis, near to which was the Alabaster Mountain mention'd by the same Author ; Thus our Monsieur. And in Pliny I find mention of a Town called Alabastron in the Text, but the Margin shews that others read Alastron, which makes not for our Monsieur in the least. In Ptolemy there is a City which he calls Arakaspal, and not far from it Alabastrinus mons, but neither Ptolemy nor Pliny doth assign the reason of the name (as our Monsieur doth) nor do they fay that they were in Arabia. Yes they were between the Nile and the Red Sea or in Egyptian Arabia, so our Monsieur ; but I should rather say Arabian Egypt, for that part of Egypt which was Westward from the Nile was callid Libyca, that which was Eastward from it Arabica, as the Inhabitants of the one were callid Libyegyptii, of the other Arabægyptii
. We fee now how firmly our Monsieur hath prove that Alabafter was cut out of the Arabian Mountains. In all his Testimonies (beside the first) there is not any mention of Arabia, and in the first Pliny speaks of che Onyx, not the Alabaster. And where
as our Monsieur says further that Alabaster was first brought from Arabia, there is nothing in all his Testimonies that sounds
As to the word me the Arabick Lexicographers make it sometimes to signify Lapides subalbidi , but I have not found that it signifies Marble, or this kind of it which is call'd Alabaster. And to conclude this, if Alabaster was an Arabian Name, it is strange that the Authors of the Arabick Versions did not retain it, but instead of it they have S. Matth. 26.7. 777777, and S. Mar. 14. 3.
P. 89. in S. Matth. 26.
Note c. I have thew'd in a Note on Mat. 25.21. that
za egi there, and fometimes the Hebrew indo, fignifies a Feaft. Thus Monfieur Le Clerc
may be thought ftrange that a Man should tell us fo confidently, that in such a Note he had fhewed that rindu signifies a Feaft, when in char Note he do's not name the word in2w; and I am satisfied that he cannot name any place in the whole Bible, where it has that signification.
P. 91. in S. Mattb. 27.5. The Hebrew word pina in Job 7. 15. is rightly rendred by Aquila, árzórn, a halter, because the thing intended is evidently a Squeezing of the Throat with a Rope, as a way of dying : My soul hath chosen strangling, and death rather than my bones; i.e. My grief is so great, that I had rather die by strangling, or any other
fort of death, than live. Thus Monsieur Le Clerc.
Dr. Hammond by pins Job 7.15, understood Strangling, Suffocation or Depriving of breath; and so the Chaldee Paraphraft, our English Translators and many more do interpret it ; but our Monsieur will have it to signify an halter, for he says that it is rightly rendred by Aquila, &ogóvn, an balter. To which I say, that it is very true that Aquila renders it by érzórn, and Dr. Hammond and many others have observed it; but that which may be questioned is, whether by dogórn, Aquila intended to signify an halter; for tho'it may sometimes signify laqueus, a snare or halter, yet I believe our Monsieur will not say that it do's not also signify Strangling i and indeed this is the