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ment of the Priests (who were privy counsellors and ministers of state), where speaking of the priest of On,* he calls him Chohen, which, as J. Cocceius shews in his lexicon,t signifies as well the friend and privy counsellor of the King, as a Priest ; and accordingly, the Chald. Paraphr. calls him Princeps On. The word often occurs ; and, I imagine, was borrowed from the Egyptian language; the Hebrews having no order of priesthood before that instituted by Moses. This further appears from the name Coes, I given to the priests of the Samothracian Mysteries, plainly a corruption of Coen or Chohen. The Mysteries in general, we have shewn, $ were derived from Egypt, and particularly those of Ceres or Isis, at Eleusis : Now, in Samothrace, the Mysteries were of Ceres and Proserpine, as at Eleusis.|| Lastly, Moses confirms Herodotus's and Strabo's account of the superior learning and dignity of the Heliopolitan college. When Joseph was exalted to the prime ministry, he tells us, that Pharaoh married him to a daughter of the priest of On; which the Septuagint and vulgar Latin rightly interpret Heliopolis: that the king was then in a disposition to do Joseph the highest honours, is plain from the circumstances of the story; and that he principally consulted his establishment in this alliance, appears from the account given us by these Greek historians. We see the public administration was in the hands of the priesthood; who would unwillingly bear a stranger at the head of affairs. The bringing Joseph therefore into their family, and Order** which was hereditary, was the best expedient to allay their prejudices and envy. And this Pharaoh did most effectually, by marrying him into that Cast which was then of greatest name and credit amongst them.
I will only observe, that this superior nobility of the Priests of On seems to have been chiefly owing to their higher antiquity. Heliopolis, or the city of the Sun, was the place where that luminary was principally worshipped ; and certainly, from the most early times : for Diodorus tells us, that the first gods of Egypt were the sun and moon ; tf the truth of which, all this, laid together, remarkably confirms. Now if we suppose, as is very reasonable, that the first established Priests in Egypt were those dedicated to the Sun at On,
• Gen. xlri. 20.
« Chohen, proprie et ex vi vocis, qui accedit ad Regem, et eum, qui summus est. Ideo explicationis ergô adjungitur tanquam etymologiæ evolutio, Exod. xix. 22. "Sacerdotes qui accedunt ad Jehovam.'--Non, quod vox Chohen notet primatum, ut vult Kimchius, sed quod notet primos accedentium--Certe in Ægypto fuerunt tales, et his alimonia a rege debebatur."
Koins, iepeùs Kabelpwy.HESYCH. ^ “ Divine Legation,” book ii. sect. 4. || MoojrTai 8ề kv Tm sauoθράκη τοϊς Καβείροις, ών Μνασέας φησί και τα ονόματα. Τέσσαρες δ' εισι τον αριθμόν, 'Αξίερος, Αξιόκερσα, Αξιόκερσος. 'Αξίερος μεν ούν έστιν ή Δημήτηρ 'Αξιόκερσα δεη Περσεφόνη: 'Αξιόκερσος δε ο "Αιδης· δ' δε προστιθέμενος τέταρτος Κάσμιλος ο Ερμής OTW, W iotopei Alovuobowpos.--Schol, in APOLL. Argon. lib. i. 917.
[Gen. xlvi, 20. " See note H, at the end of this book. It See “ Divine Legation," book ü.
we shall not be at a loss to account for their titles of nobility. Strabo says, they were much given to astronomy; and this too we can easily believe: for what more likely than that they should be fond* of the study of that system, over which their God presided, not only in his moral, but in his natural capacity ? For whether they received the doctrine from original tradition, or whether they invented it at hazard, which is more likely, t in order to exalt this their visible God, by giving him the post of honour, it is certain they taught that the sun was in the centre of its system, and that all the other bodies moved round it, in perpetual revolutions. This noble theory came, with the rest of the Egyptian learning, into Greece (being brought thither by Pythagoras; who, it is remarkable, received it from Enuphis, a priest of Heliopolis ;) I and, after having given the most distinguished lustre to his school, it sunk into obscurity, and suffered a total eclipse throughout a long succession of learned and unlearned ages ; till these times relumed its ancient splendor, and immovably fixed it on the most unerring principles of science.
II. Another observable circumstance of conformity between the Greek historians and Moses, is in their accounts of the RELIGIOUS RITES of Egypt. Herodotus expresly tells us, that the Egyptians esteemed it a prophanation, to sacrifice any kind of cattle, except swine, bulls, clean calves, and geese ; § and, in another place, that heifers, rams, and goats were held sacred,|| either in one province or in another : though not from any adoration paid in these early times to the living animal. I shall shew hereafter that the Egyptians at first only worshipped their figures or images. However picture worship must needs make the animals themselves sacred, and unfit for sacrifice. Now here again, in confirmation of this account, we are told by Scripture, that when Pharaoh would have had Moses sacrifice to God, in the land of Egypt, according to his own family-rites, the prophet objected,—It is not meet 80 to do ; for we shall sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians to the Lord our God : Lo shall we sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians before their eyes, and will they not stone us? And if Herodotus came any thing near the truth in his account of the early superstition of Egypt, the Israelites, we see, could not avoid sacrificing the abomination, i. e. the Gods of the Egyptians. And with what deadly hatred and revenge they • See note I, at the end of this book.
See “ the Divine Legation of Moses Demonstrated,” book i. See note K, at the end of this book. Toioi gàp ouoc κτήνεα οσίη θύειν εστί, χωρίς υών, και έρσένων βοών, και μόσχων, όσοι αν καθαροί έωσι, Kal xnyéwv, k@s dy oüro å v porous Stolev ;-Lib. ii. cap. 45. | Tès Bows Tas θηλέας Αιγύπτιοι πάντες ομοίως σέβονται προβάτων πάντων μάλιστα μακρώ.-Cap. xli. “Οσοι μεν δη Διός Θηβαίου τδρυνται ερον, ή νομού του Θηβαίου εισι, ούτοι μέν τσάντες οίων απεχόμενοι, αίγας θύουσι. Θεούς γάρ δή ου τους αυτούς άπαντες ομοίως Αιγύπτιοι σέβονται, σλήν "Ισιός τε και 'Οσίριδος. τον δη Διόνυσον είναι λέγουσι. τούτους δε ομοίως άπαντες σέβονται. όσοι δε του Μένδητος έκτηνται τρόν, ή νομου του Μενδησίου ciol, oŮtol dè aiyv årexóuevoi, öïs Súovos.-Cap. xlii. TExod. viii. 26.
pursued such imaginary impieties, the same Herodotus informis us, in another place.*
III. To come next to the CIVIL ARTS of Egypt.—Concerning their practice of physic, Herodotus says, that it was divided amongst the faculty in this manner: “Every distinct distemper hath its own physician, who confines himself to the study and cure of that alone, and meddles with no other : so that all places are crouded with physicians : for one class hath the care of the eyes, another of the head, another of the teeth, another of the region of the belly, and another of occult distempers.” | After this, we shall not think it strange that Joseph's physicians are represented as a number-And Joseph commanded his servants, the physicians, to embalm his father : and the physicians embalmed Israel. I A body of these domestics would now appear an extravagant piece of state, even in the first minister. But then, we see, it could not be otherwise, where each distemper had its proper physician : so that every great family, as well as city, must needs, as Herodotus expresses it, swarm with the Faculty: and a more convincing instance, of the grandeur, luxury, and politeness of a people, cannot, I think, be well given. But indeed it was this circumstance for which the Egyptian nation was peculiarly distinguished, not only by the earliest Greek writers (as we shall see hereafter), but likewise by the holy prophets. There is a remarkable passage in Jeremiah, where, foretelling the overthrow of Pharaoh's army at the Euphrates, he describes Egypt by this characteristic, her skill in medicine. Go up into Gilead, and take balm, 0 virgin the daughter of Egypt : in vain shalt thou USE MANY MEDICINES; for thou shalt not be cured.Ş The Prophet delights in this kind of imagery, which marks out a people by its singularities, or pre-eminence. So again, in this very chapter : EGYPT, says he, is like a FAIR HEIFER, but destruction cometh : it cometh from the north. Also her hired men are in the midst of her like FATTED BULLOCKS, for they also are turned back and are fled away together.|| For the worship of Isis and Osiris, under the figure of a cow and a bull, and afterwards by the animals themselves, was the most celebrated in all the Egyptian Ritual.
But a learned writer, frightened by the common panic of the high antiquity of Egypt, will needs shew, the art of medicine to be of much later original. And to make room for his hypothesis, he contrives to explain away this direct testimony of Herodotus, by a very uncommon piece of criticism. This is the substance of his
• Lib. ii. cap. 65. 'H dè intpekh katà Táde ope Sébastal piñs vovcov ČKAOTOS μητρός έστι, και ου πλεόνων. σάντα δ' ιητρών εστι πλέα. οι μεν γαρ, οφθαλμών ιητροι KOTEOTÉCJI. oi dė, kepanas. oi dè, ôdbvTwv• oi dė, katà indúv oi dè, twv àpavéwy voúowy.-Lib. ii. cap. 84. I Gen. 1. 2.
Jer. xlvi, 11.
Il Verses 20, 21.
See note L, at the end of this book.
peculiarly did this circumstan cannot, I think the
reasoning, and in his own words :-“We read of the Egyptian physicians in the days of Joseph; and Diodorus represents them as an order of men not only very ancient in Egypt, but as having a full employment in continually giving physic to the people, not to cure, but to prevent their falling into distempers. Herodotus says much the same thing, and represents the ancient Egyptians as living under a continual course of physic, undergoing so rough a regimen for three days together, every month, that I cannot but suspect some mistake, both in him, and Diodorus's account of them in this particular. Herodotus allows them to have lived in a favourable climate, and to have been a healthy people, which seems hardly consistent with so much medicinal discipline as he imagined them to go through, almost without interruption. The first mention we have of physicians in the sacred pages shews indeed that there was such a profession in Egypt in Joseph's time, and Jacob was their patient; but their employment was to embalm him after he was dead; we do not read that any care was taken to give him physic whilst alive; which inclines me to suspect that the Egyptians had no practice for the cure of the diseases of a sick bed in these days : we read of no sick persons in the early ages. The diseases of Egypt, which the Israelites had been afraid of, were such as they had no cure for ; and any other sicknesses were then so little known, that they had no names for them.-An early death was so unnsual, that it was generally remarked to be a punishment for some extraordinary wickedness. Moses informs us, that the physicians embalmed Jacob; many of them were employed in the office, and many days time was necessary for the performance, and different persons performed different parts of it, some being concerned in the care of one part of the body, and some of the other : and I imagine this manner of practice occasioned Herodotus to hint, that the Egyptians had a different physician for every distemper, or rather, as his subsequent words express, for each different part of the body : for so indeed they had, not to cure the diseases of it, but to embalm it when dead. These, I imagine, were the offices of the Egyptian physicians in the early days. They were an order of the ministers of religion. The art of curing distempers or diseases was not yet attempted.—We may be sure the physicians practised only surgery until after Homer's time ;—for we read in him, that their whole art consisted in extracting arrows, healing wounds, and preparing anodynes.—In the days of Pythagoras the learned began to form rules of diet for the preservation of health, and to prescribe in this point to sick persons, in order to assist towards their recovery. And in this, Strabo tells us, consisted the practice of the ancient Indian physicians. They endeavoured to cure distempers by a diet regimen, but they gave no physic. Hippocrates---began the practice of visiting sick-bed
that the Egyp and Herodotus that the very condo
religious purificatem so punctual in obptions, which Diodorue ima
patients, and prescribed medicines with success for their distempers. This, I think, was the progress of physic:- And it must evidently appear from it, that the Egyptians could have no such physicians in the days of Moses as Diodorus and Herodotus SEEM to suppose."*So far this writer. But if it be made appear, that the very contrary of every thing here advanced be the truth ; I shall hope, that what Herodotus and Diodorus, conformable to Scripture, do not seem to suppose, but directly and circumstantially to affirm, may be admitted for certain.
He tells us, first, “ that Diodorus represents the Egyptian physicians as administering physic to the people in the early times, not to cure, but to prevent their falling into distempers.” One would conclude, from his manner of expression, that the historian had said they did not administer to the infirm, but to the healthy only; which gives us the idea of a superstitious kind of practice, by charms and amulets : and so indeed the writer is willing we should think of it. I should imagine, says he, that their ancient prescriptions, which Diodorus and Herodotus suppose them 80 punctual in observing, were not medicinal, but religious purifications.t Let Diodorus then speak for himself : “They prevent distempers,” says he, “and keep the body in health by refrigerating and laxative medicines ; by abstinence and emeticks; sometimes in a daily regimen, sometimes with an intermission every three or four days : for they hold a superfluity in all food, as usually taken ; and that it is the original of distempers : so that the abovementioned regimen removes the cause, and greatly contributes to preserve the body in a state of health.” I Here we have a very rational theory, and expert and able practice; this prescribing to prevent distempers, being, as amongst us, the result of the physician's long experience in his art : for the regimen, we see, was intermitted or continued according to the habit and constitution of the patient.
But the Egyptians being a healthy people, and living under a favourable climate, could not have occasion (says the learned writer) for 80 much physic ; therefore he will suspect their accounts. I have observed, that these accounts are a proof of that grandeur, luxury, and politeness, which sacred and prophane history ascribe to this people, and which so many other circumstances concur to make credible. Now a too great repletion, the effect of a luxurious diet, would certainly find employment for the whole tribe of evacuants (as we may see by the various experience of our own times), notwith
• « The sacred and profane History of the World connected," vol. ii, ed. 2, pp. 359361, 364-367.
Tàs dè--vosovs apokatanaubavouevou Sepaπεύουσι τα σώματα κλυσμούς, και σοτίμοις τισι καθαρτηρίοις, και νηστείαις, και εμέτους, ενίοτε μεν καθ' εκάστην ημέραν, ενίοτε δε τρεις ή τέτταρας ημέρας διαλείποντες. Φασί γάρ, σάσης τροφής αναδοθείσης, το πλέον είναι περιττόν· αφ' ου γεννάσθαι τάς νόσους άστε την προειρημένην θεραπείαν αναιρούσαν τας αρχάς της νόσου, μάλιστ' αν σαραoketasai Thy iylecay.- Biblioth. lib. i. p. 52.