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times the driver or charioteer ; and this last signification is thought to cast some light on 2 Kings, ii. 12. This gives a different idea to the exclamation of Elisha, when losing Elijah; “ My father! my father, the recab—the conductor of Israel, as of a chariot, and of his horsemen;" one who has had as much solicitude for the guidance of Israel, as the driver of a chariot has for the safe conduct of his vehicle. The other word is apprehended to point out a carriage with four horses, a carriage of pomp and dignity. Thus Joseph rode in the second state chariot of Pharaoh's kingdom; and Sisera was expected to make his triumphant entrance in such a chariot; for his mother says, “ why tarry the wheels of his marecabeh," Judg. v. 28. which he had also used in battle, ver. 15.
A plate of medals and coins is added, to stengthen or illus. trate these remarks.
Formerly, the attention of the inquisitive and the curious was much directed to what were denominated the written mountains; and many years ago, the honest mind of the then Bishop of Clogher was much engaged by the Gebel el Mokatab. Warm and earnest he was in his inquiries and proposals on the subject : but it seems with great reason to be now laid aside. Niebuhr, if we rightly recollect, was directed to inscriptions on a rock which he did not esteem worthy of notice ; nor do we observe that these once-famed characters are particularly specified in the descriptions here exhibited of Sinai, Pharan, &c. : but we find thoughts on the subject of early-writing ;' and these thoughts are occasioned by inscriptions on the bricks said to be found in the ruins of antient Babylon *. The characters, free quently resembling nails or arrow-heads, are supposed to denote, not letters, norsyllables, but complete sounds, i.e. words, or signs of ideas. They are here compared with other inscriptions dis. covered in the ruins of Persepolis: but, whether they might be regarded as remnants of Nebuchadnezzar's days, or of times more distant, even of the original tower of Belus, is an inquiry into which we will not enter : it is likely that they would be of much later date than either. The editor, however, proceeds briefly to discuss the question concerning the antiquity of writing, or the science of communicating ideas by signs.'We perceive no absurdity in the supposition that the antedi. luvians might be in possession of this invention, in some form :' but concerning the remnants or records of Thyoth (Thoth), or bis inscriptions on pillars, we may be allowed to be sceptical, though our author hastens to undertake the desperate cause of a passage in Josephus, Antiquities, lib. i. cap. 2. which has
* The situation of Babylon must be ascertained, before mention is made of bricks found in its ruins.
usually usually been treated as no better than fabulous by learned menj where, he says, “ The posterity of Seth, having been forewarned of the deluge, erected two columns [ETHASON), one of stone, the other of brick; on which they recorded their discoveries in astrononty, &c. The column of brick is still extant in the land of Seirath, or Syrias.” He offers arguments to support his hypothesis : but we shall turn to a very different subject : «The Mole.
· Our translators (observes this writer) have rendered Weesel, the Hebrew word CHOLED, in conformity with other versions, and not a few commentators; and they have rendered Mole, the He. brew word tinshemet ; from which renderings we have ventured to differ. Having, as we presume to think, established the regularity of the system of the sacred writer, considered in reference to natural history, we have concluded that the word tinshemet, being at the close of a list of lizards, must denote a lizard, like its fellows ; and that the mole is too distant in its nature to be properly introduced in such connection. But we ought, perhaps, to give some reasons for differing from our worthy translators, in rendering mole what they have rendered weesel ; and this we do, by observing, ist, That the present name of the mole in the east is khuld, which is undeniably the same word as the Hebrew choled : 2dly, That the Hebrew word choled, chold, or chuld, is to creep into, and that the same Syriac word implies to creep underneath, to creep into by burrowing, i.e. under ground ; and so it is used, 2 Tim. iii. 6. in the Syriac version, creeping into houses, by going—burrowing under them, which is the true idea of the Greek, and a very expressive phraseology. It is well known that such is the disposition of the mole, a creature foríned expressly for the purpose of burrowing and appointed to this mode of life ; and not merely, as some creatures are; to burrowing above ground, but to burrowing under ground. For this purpose it has; as the reader will observe in the figure, a very large, broad, and powerful forefoot ; it is short, thick, and muscular ; while the hind. foot, though strong, much more resembles those of other quadrupeds. It is formed to live wholly under the earth, that no place should be left untenanted :-Less than a rat and bigger than a mouse, with a coat of fine, short, glossy, black hair; its nose long and pointed, its eyes scarcely possible to be discerned : instead of cars, has only holes : its neck short ; body thick and round; small shoré tail; legs also very short ; as it rests on its belly, the feet appear growing out of its body: the ancients, and some moderns, thought the animal utterly blind; but Derham, by a microscope, discovered all the parts of an eye.- By the breadth, strength, and shortness of the forefeet, which incline outwards, it throws back the earth with ease; had they been longer, the falling in of the earth would have prevented the quick repetition of their strokes, and they would have required a larger hole for their exertions.-Little vision is sufficient for a creature who lives in darkness; had the organ been larger, it would bave been perpetually liable to injury by falling carth : that incontenience is aroided by its being very small, and very closely covered with hair. Buried in the earth, it seldom stirs out, unless forced by violent rains, or, when in pursuit of prey, it gets into the open air, which is hardly its natural element; it chooses the looser, softer grounds, beneath which he can travel witb greater ease, where also it finds most worms and insects, on which it chiefly preys : it is most active, and casts up most earth before rain ; and in winter, before a thaw ; at those times worms and insects being in motion, and approaching the surface. In dry weather, the mole seldom forms hillocks ; but penetrates deeper after its prey. The mole is scarcely found, except in cultivated countries.'
• There is another passage, Isaiah, ii. 20. where our translation uses the word mole ;_idols shall be thrown to the moles, and to the bats ;"'--the original word here used is not choled, but [as it stands in our printed copies] in two words, chaphar pharut. Bochart, however, is for reading these two words as one ; and so three copies collated by Dr. Kennicott read it. In this case, these chapharphara!, ni1970n will derive from the word chaphar, to sink, to delve, to dig down into, to penetrate, a very expressive and characteristic notion of a name for the mole.— But is it likely the mole should have in Hebrew two names ? I rather doubt it ; and therefore, having appropriated to it the name choled, would inquire what these chapharpharut can be. To accomplish this, let us examine the passage'; which is the more necessary as the versions have been utterly perplexed about it. Montanus, keeping the words in two, renders to dig depths; the LXX, peatusą, vanities ; Aquila, opuyas, depths or ditches. Theodotian, not knowing to which side to incline, preserves the original word.'
Having therefore premised that the general scope of the passage is a threatening against pride, and a denunciation of vengeance on idols and idol-worshippers, the writer pursues the investigation: the result of which is ;-Since the word chaphar explicitly means to sink, and this is its proper idea, why not accept it here also, and dismiss the moles from this passage of the prophet; considering chapharpharut as a duplication ; an emó phatical augmentation of the original idea ; – sinks, deep sinks : the deepest cavities dug by human powers. Whether dug by kuman power, or not, does not seem essential to the idea.
Thus disposing of the moles, there remains the question,what is to be done with the bats? This is answered without much difficulty, and with some reason, by supposing that not bats, but the places which they inhabit, caverns of antient buildings, subterraneous vaults, (bat-residences,) are here in. tended :-" The chief shall cast his idols of silver and gold into sinks and subterraneous cavities :" or, " he shall cast them into sinks, even to the bats.”-Moles, it is generally allowed, never abide in rocks, or ruins, or dwellings, but beneath the looser, softer grounds. The writer, we doubt not, is well aware that casting to the moles and bats is said to have been proverbial, among the Hebrews, for the greatest neglect and
slight: slight.--He appears, on the whole, to succeed in his attempt to confine the Hebrew name of the mole to one word, choled, by which he supposes it is expressed in the prohibitory passage in Leviticus.
Dr. Lowth, in his New Testament, preserves the moles and the bats, and refers to Harmer, Obs. vol. ii. p. 455.
Passing by a number of articles, we hasten to take a brief notice of - An expository index, referring to such parts of the books of Scripture, as may be illustrated by means of natural science.' Some pages of this index are attached to each number. For a short specimen of its nature and manner, we take a few of its first lines :
• In the beginning God created-composed the whole (8 AT) heaven—and the whole earth : this word whole has been omitted in our translation, yet the insertion of it seems necessary, and it seems, too, to render the following vau, But,-- But the eartl, was without form and void, ill that period of which the following history is about to treat. The Hebrew word rendered to create, signihes to arrange, to compose into order a production, whether from former materials or not. Tl: Heaven. This word is plural in our language, as well as in the He. brew, and signifies several heaven. In the present instance it means : 1. The fixed stars, in their variously distant stations, from each other, and from the earth. 2. More immediately the planetary system, of which our earth is a member: the planets which circulate around the sun as a centre. The planets are really globes of land and water, like our earth, but, by reason of their distance from us, we perceive them only by their eitulgence, and to ordinary observation they appear as so many stars, among the firmament stars. Moreover, thougla there be several secondary planets, and likewise numerous comets, connected with our system, yet as these are not visible to us, like the primary planets, 1.presume, they were not referred to by the sacrid writer under the term heaven, as I think the visible planets were.'
The author pursues his remarks in an explanation of tire plate of the solar system, which is annexed. He observes, in his farther progress, the wise and admirable order in which creation proceeds ;- light, the first great stimulus,--then, air, the general envelope of the globe, - after air, water, possessing many of the properties of air -- and also of earth, the last element in the list, - which with all its varieties meets our oba servation ; and thus the chaotic state of the globe is exchanged for a state of regularity, order, and arrangement. Now let life start into exercise, but in regular order; first, vegetable lite,' &c. -- We cannot attend him farther, but shall insert remarks on a different subject :
• Exod. x. v 21. Plague of darkness. - I presume that the inha. bitants of England and Holland have frequent opportunities of con
templating templating darknesses by means of fogs, &c. which in the climate of Egypt would be altogether miraculous. Where the air is so clear as hardly to form clouds, those clouds can much less appear in the state of that thick vapour which a fog in London sometimes assumes. It is common among us to say the fog is so thick it may be cut with a knife!” (and I find to my surprise the same phraseology in Schewzer ;) which I take to be perfectly analogous to the expression of the sacred writer, “ darkness which might be felt." I am sure I have often felt the grossly vaporated air, the dense, compact misti. ness, of a London atmosphere. The duration of this fog is marked as being three days, which I suppose is to be taken in the Hebrew sense, as denoting the close of the first day, the whole of the second day, and the beginning of the third day; so that the Egyptians must have been very sensible of their embarrassing situation. As for the expressions “ that they could not see each other, nor did they rise from their places,” these, I suppose, may be taken somewhat at large, since artificial lights, flambeaux, &c. were in use. But these probably gave that kind of obscure solemnity of illumination, which our London lamps exhibit during the darkness of a foggy evening. This kind of dim half-light would astonish the inhabitants of Egypt, who would rather sit at home than venture abroad, and endeavour, at their personal risk, to visit their friendo, or to follow their occupations,
And through the palpable obscure, find out
Their uncouth way.-Many additions might be made to the preceding extracts, but we hope that these will prove sufficient to assist the reader's judgment. We cannot say that the criticisms are at all times just and satisfactory, nor do we in every instance concur in the conclusions and opinions which the work presents : yet we must regard it as an ingenious and laborious performance. It requires, indeed, a judgment well corrected, and accuracy well guarded, when we suffer ourselves to rove among languages, etymologies, varying manners and appearances, and particularly oriental customs, &c.; since resemblances may seize the fancy, and rise to a great degree of probability, when they have no real foundation in truth. The reader will unquestionably be entertained, and often improved, by the variety of information liere amassed, even though he may esteem it requisite on some occasions to suspend his judgment.
In general, the style of this work is plain and correct, but some instances of inattention and negligence occur.–The numerous plates add greatly to its value.
Some additional numbers have lately reached us.
Rev. MAY, 1803.