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PASSAGE OF THE ISRAELITES THROUGH
THE RED SEA. This week we present our readers with a cut taken from Mr. Danby's well-known picture of the Passage of the Red Sea by the Israelites under the conduct of Moses. The subject almost immediately follows, and connects itself with, that of Mr. Roberts's picture, which was particularly noticed in this Magazine some time ago. Both pictures fall within the same general class of design; a class in which the striking effects of light and shade, combined with a certain vastness and indefmiteness of outline, are principally studied, to the partial neglect of the higher and more truly imaginative objects of the art. We repeat, that we should be sorry to see this style of painting more generally pursued than it is at present, because we much fear its ultimate tendency will be to lower the character of the art as expressive of beauty and moral power; nevertheless, we willingly acknowledge the pleasure we have received in musing upon this imposing representation of the place and circumstances of one of the most memorable scenes in the departure of the Hebrews from the land of Egypt.
When the children of Israel had completely detached themselves from the dominion of the king of Egypt, the object which, in pursuance of prophecy and the divine command, they had to accomplish, was to march to the borders of that pleasant land—the land of Canaan—which had been promised of old to them, through their great ancestor Abraham. The direct road to Palestine from Rameses, the chief seat of the Hebrews in Egypt, and probably the same as Goshen, was to the north, by the line of the Mediterranean Sea; and the march in this direction, if unopposed, might, probably, have been performed in the course of four or five weeks. But all this district, or, at least, the part of it adjoining the immediate boundary of the Holy Land, was inhabited by a strong and warlike people called Philistines, and we are expressly told by Moses that it was by special direction of God himself, that the Israelites declined the nearest road, and took, instead of it, a turn to the south or southwest, and came to Succoth, which Josephus supposes to be the more modern Latopolisj from Succoth they advanced to Etham, at the extreme northern end of the western branch of the Red Sea. This western branch was called Sinus Horoopolites, by the ancient Greeks and Romans; and by modern nations, the Gulf of Suez. Here they were, as Moses says, on the edge of the Wilderness, or that vast desert which is situated between the rich river-soil of the Delta of Egypt, and the southern parts of Palestine. Here they had, in fact, very nearly headed the gulf, and, if escape from Pharaoh was their immediate care, the Israelites had only to proceed a day's journey right forward, and it would be obvious that the nature of the ground, and the deficiency of water, would effectually check the pursuit of a considerable army, the chief strength of which, we know to have consisted in chariots and cavalry.
At this critical juncture, however, God commanded Moses to lead the great host of the Hebrews back again from the onward road, and encamp them farther to the south, on the west or Egyptian side of the Red Sea. The place of such encampment was pointed out before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea. It is said that Pi-hahiroth means an opening into the mountains., and the result of much laborious investigation has been that, in fact, the Israelites were thus led into a glen or combe, in which their retreat was rendered difficult by surrounding rocks, and their advance, to all human speculation, absolutely impracticable by the sea in front. Now we are told that
God gave this remarkable command to Moses, for that Pharaoh would say of the children of Israel, They are entangled in the land; the wilderness hath shut them in. "And I, the Lord, will harden Pharaoh's heart, that he shall follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the Lord." Thus, therefore, the tyranny and falsehood of Pharaoh, and the idolatrous wickedness of the Egyptians, were to undergo the last and finishing act of divine retribution,—that retribution to be brought about and signalized by such a marvellous demonstration of the omnipotence of God over the ordinary laws and processes of the material world, as should, for the time being, strike dumb with astonishment the worshippers of birds, and beasts, and reptiles, and lifeless forms of nature, and also should remain in everlasting record, an awful proof of the unsleeping government of the Lord. May we not also surmise that, by this apparently strange direction given to the march, the faith of the leader was intended to be tried; for certainly, under all the circumstances of the flight of the Israelites, and the notorious reluctance and double-dealing of Pharaoh, such a command must have seemed, at first, to Moses, whose practical acquaintance with the country cannot but be presumed, almost entirely destructive of his nearly accomplished hopes of the deliverance of his fellowcountrymen.
What God had foretold, and what Moses and the Israelites had good reason, upon human considerations, to apprehend, took place. Pharaoh collected his forces, and followed the track of the escaping host, and came within sight of them, when they were encamped before Pi-hahiroth. Thus, the Israelites were completely hemmed in. Their situation seemed desperate to the multitude; they feared the vengeance of their irritated task-masters, and in the bitterness of their spirits, they thus threw their reproaches upon Moses. "Because there were no graves in Egypt," said they to him, " hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness > wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, ' Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians?' For it had been better for us to have served the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness." And Moses said unto the people, " Fear ye not; stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will show to you today; for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to-day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace." Upon this, that mysterious pillar—of cloud by day, and of fire by night—which had hitherto appeared in advance of the Israelites, shifted its position to their rear, and stood up between them and the pursuing Egyptians. Then Moses, by divine command, stretched out his hand over the arm of the sea which ran before the camp, and immediately a strong east wind began to blow, the waters were driven back, and a dry passage appeared throughout, to the other side of the gulf. Along this awful pass, the Hebrews marched during the night, and by the morning light, were all safely arrived at the opposite coast. The Egyptians had witnessed this wonderful escape of their imagined victims, and in their blindness and fury, followed them into the miraculous path. But now their appointed hour was come. In the words of the sacred text, "It came to pass, that in the morning watch, the Lord looked unto the host of the Egyptians, through the pillar of fire and of the cloud, and troubled the host of the Egyptians, and took off their chariot-wheels, that they drave them heavily; so that the Egyptians said, 'Let us floe from the face of Israel, for the Lord fighteth for them against the Egyptians.' Then the Lord said unto Moses, 'Stretch out thine hand over the sea, that the waters may come again upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots, and upon their horsemen.' And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to his strength when the morning appeared; and the Egyptians fled against it; and the Lord overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. And the waters returned, and covered the chariots and the horsemen, and all the host of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them; there remained not so much as one of them. Thus the Lord saved Israel that day out of the hands of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the seashore."
Niebuhr, the Danish traveller, thinks the place of the passage was near Suez. At this point, the water is about two miles across, and Niebuhr himself forded it. But he says, that the sea must have been deeper in old time, and extended further towards the north. Burckhardt agrees with Niebuhr; others place it about thirty miles lower down. Still, wherever the passage was effected, the Mosaic account cannot, by any fair interpretation, be explained without miraculous agency.
Bruce, the traveller, has well observed, that the doubts of its having been done by miracle do not merit any particular attention to solve them. "This passage," says Bruce, " is told us by Scripture to be a miraculous one; and if so, we have nothing to do with natural causes. If we do not believe Moses, we need not believe the transaction at all, seeing that it is from his authority we derive it. If we believe in God, that He 'made'the sea, we must believe He could 'divide' it, when He sees proper reason: and of that He must be the only judge. It is no greater miracle to divide the Red sea than to divide the river Jordan. If the Etesian wind, blowing from the northwest in summer, could keep up the sea as a wall on the right, or to the south, of fifty feet high; still the difficulty would remain of building the wall on the left hand, or to the north. Besides, water standing in that position for a day must have lost the nature of fluid. Whence came that cohesion of particles, which hindered that wall to escape at the sides? This is as great a miracle as that of Moses. If the Etesian winde had done this once, they must have repeated it many a time before and since, from the same causes. Were all these difficulties surmounted, what could we do with the 'pillar of fire?' The answer is, we should not believe it. Why then believe the passage at all? We have no authority for the one, but what is for the other: it is altogether contrary to the ordinary nature of things: and if not a miracle, it must be a fable." i Moses, an eye-witness, expressly declares, that the agency was direct, immediate, and foretold of God; and how can there be any room for explaining this away, without at once denying the veracity of the sacred historian himself?
I There are on the spot traditions of this memorable event still existing. The wells or fountains in the neighbourhood, are still called by the names of Moses and Pharaoh. "Wherever,'' says Niebuhr," you ask an Arab where the Egyptians were drowned, he points to the part of the shore where you are standing. In one bay they pretend to hear, in the roaring of the waters, the wailings of the ghosts of Pharaoh's army;" and Diodorus Siculus, who lived about the commencement of the Christian era, relates a tradition derived by theIchthyophagi (thepeople who live on fish,)
from their forefathers, that once an extraordinary reflux took place, the channel of the gulf became dry, the green bottom appearing, and the whole body of water rolling away in an opposite direction. After the dry land, in the deepest part, had been seen, an extraordinary flood-tide came in, and restored the whole channel to its former state.
SPIRIT OF LIFE AND LOVE.
Thou hear'st the rustling amongst the trees,
'Tis the Wind that rustles amongst the trees
The Wind is something thou canst not see,
And those who are under the Spirit's control,
Sacred Musical Offering.
THE HYDROMETER AND THE CHINESE MERCHANT.
The Hydrometer is an instrument by which the strength of spirit is determined, or rather by which the quantity of water mixed with the spirit is ascertained; and the dependence which may be placed on its accuracy, once gave rise to a curious scene in China. A merchant sold to the purser of a ship a quantity of distilled spirit, according to a sample shown; but not standing in awe of conscience, he afterwards, in the privacy of his store-house, added a quantity of water to each cask. The article having been delivered on board, and tried by the hydrometer, was discovered to be wanting in strength. When the vendor was charged with the fraud, he stoutly denied it; but on the exact quantity of water which had been mixed with the spirit being named, he was confounded; for he knew of no human means by which the discovery could have been made, and, trem bling, he confessed his roguery.—If the ingenuity of man is thus able to detect the iniquity of a fellow-creature, and to expose his secret practices, how shall we escape the allseeing eye of the Almighty, that omniscient Being, "who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the heart?"
Pause Before You Follow Example.—A mule, laden with salt, and an ass, laden with wool, went over a brook together. By chance the mule's pack became wetted; the salt melted, and his burden became lighter. After they had passed, the mule told his good fortune to the ass, who, thinking to speed as well, wetted his pack at the next water; but his load became the heavier, and he broke down under it.
The Weeping Willow.—This admired tree is a native of Spain. A few bits of branches were enclosed in a present to Lady Suffolk, who came over with George the Second. Mr. Pope was in company when the covering was taken off, and, observing the pieces of sticks appeared as if there was some vegetation in them, he added, " Perhaps they may produco something we have not in England.' Under this idea, he planted it in his garden, and it produced the willow-tree which has given birth to so many others. It was felled in November, 1801.
There Is not a nobler sight in the world than an aged Christian; who, having been sifted in the sieve of temptation, stands forth as a confirmer of the assaulted, testifying, from Ins own trials, the reality of religion; and meeting, by warnings, and directions, and consolations, the cases o. all who mav be tempted to doubt it. (jkcil.
Wit is brushwood: Judgment is timber. The first makes the brightest flame; but the other gives the most lasting heat, -hunter.
attacks mankind. Great confusion existed among naturalists as to the proper mode of distinguishing this animal from the Panther; in the latter, however, the markings are always in the form of spots, but the different species of each are not easily ascertained, as the marks on the skin differ so much in those that are known to be of the same kind, and even on both sides of the same individual.
The Leopard is frequently met with in Asia; but in Africa it abounds, and is very destructive, committing dreadful havoc among camels, horses, antelopes, goats, sheep, and other domestic animals.
Frequenting the banks of rivers, it takes its prey by surprise, either lurking in thickets, from which it darts when it approaches within a convenient distance, or creeping on the belly till it reaches its victim - it climbs trees in pursuit of monkeys and smaller animals with ease. Travellers relate that the flesh is of an excellent flavour, and white as veal. The negroes take the Leopard in pit-falls for the sake of the flesh, as well as for the skins, which latter sell at a very high price. Collars, bracelets, and other ornaments, composed of the teeth of the Leopard, also constitute an article of finery in the dress of the negro women, and are esteemed valuable as charms to prevent the power of witchcraft.
The chief food of the larger beasts of prey is the antelope, of which there are upwards of forty varieties known in Africa alone.
TWELFTH DAY. Which is so called from its being the twelfth after Christmas-day, is termed also the feast of the Epiphany, from a Greek word signifying manifestation, in memory of our Lord's having been on that day made, manifest to the Gentiles.
The, customs observed on this day, in different countries, were originally intended to do honour to the Eastern Magi, or wise men, who came from a distance under the guidance of a star, to inquire after Christ, and, having been directed to Bethlehem, paid him homage, and offered him presents there. Various have been the conjectures of the learned, relating to 1 bese sages, both as to their station, and the particular
country from which they travelled: but it is most probable that they were Gentile Philosophers, who, by the Divine influence on their minds, had been led to improve their knowledge of nature, as the means of leading them to that of 4he one living and true God. From passages in the Sacred Writings, we may conclude that the word Magi denotes those who were proficients in learning, and especially in astronomy, and other branches of natural philosophy: and it is reasonable.to suppose, that these wise men had heard the prophecies concerning the Messiah from the Jews who lived upon their borders. They watched, therefore, with attention, for the tokens of his coming, and followed the sign given them, to do him homage, thus becoming the first representatives of the Gentile world. With regard to the country from which they came, Grotius and other writers think that it was Arabia, which is often in Scripture called the East, and was famous for gold, frankincense, and myrrh; of which, we learn, they brought portions, as offerings to Him whom they recognised as a king. It is customary, even at this day, in Eastern countries, for people to offer some present to any illustrious person whom they visit, as a mark of respect to a superior.
The Old Custom Of Drawing King And Queen On Twiliiu Night.
Selden (in his Table Talk) says, "Our choosing Kings and Queens on Twelfth Night has reference to the three Kings." To explain this, we must observe that the Magi, or wise men, who followed the guidance of the star, after the Nativity, to Bethlehem, were, by a common, but not well-founded notion, supposed to be three kings: and some fanciful persons went so far, as not only to invent names for them, but to describe their persons. "Of these Magi, or Sages, (vulgarly called the Three Kings of Colen,) the first, named Melchior, an aged man, with a long beard, offered gold; the second, Jasper, a beardless youth, offered frankincense; the third, Baltasar, a black, or moor, with a large spreading beard, offered myrrh."
In consequence of this strange conceit, therefore, of the wise men having been kings, and from an idea of doing them honour, the ancient custom of choosing King and Queen on Twelfth Night is thought to have taken its rise. This choice was formerly made by means of a bean, found in a piece of divided cake, the person who happened to select it being the King of the Bean. It appears to have been very common in France; and among the Cries of Paris, a poem, written about six hundred years since '*, beans for Twelfth Day are mentioned.
We also find, from some verses of the time of Queen Elizabeth, that the Twelfth-cake was made with plenty of plums, and with a Bean and a Pea. Whoever got the former, was to be King; whoever found the latter, was to be Queen.
In Queen Elizabeth's progresses through the country, she was entertained with poems, speeches, &c, at the houses which she visited. The following is part of a dialogue, recited at Sudley, on one of these occasions:
(Melibmus). Cut the cake: who hath the beane shall be King; and where the peaze is, shee shal be Queene.
(Nisa). I have the peaze, and must be Queene.
(Mel). I the beane, and King; I must commaunde. And in a poem, of somewhat later date, called Twelfh Night, Or King And Queene, we have, Now, now, the mirth comes, With the cake full of plums, Where Beane's the King of the sport here; Beside, we must know, .> The Pea also Must revell as Queene in the court here, &c. • Brand's Popular Antiquitiet,
THE PEARL-FISHERY IN CEYLON. The country round Aripo, on the north-western coast of the island of Ceylon, is flat, sandy, and barren, presenting nothing to the eye, but low brushwood, chiefly of thorns and prickly pears (amongst which is the plant that nourishes the Cochineal*), and here and there some straggling villages with a few cocoanut trees. But Condaachty, three miles distant, where, in general, nothing is to be seen but a few miserable huts, and a sandy desert, becomes, during the period of the pearl-fishery, a populous town, several streets of which extend upwards of a mile in length (though, as the houses are only intended as a shelter from the sun and rain, they are very rudely constructed), and the scene, altogether, resembles a crowded fair on the grandest scale. The people most active in erecting huts and speculating in the various branches of merchandise, are Mohammedans, Cingalese (natives of Ceylon), and Hindoos from the opposite coast of the continent of India. Apparently, however, from their natural timidity, none of the Cingalese are divers, and scarcely any of them engage in the other active parts of the fishery: they merely resort hither for the purpose of supplying the markets.
About the end of October, in the year preceding a pearl-fishery, when a short interval of fine weather prevails, an examination of the banks takes place. A certain number of boats, under an English superintendent, repair in a body to each bank, and having, by frequent diving, ascertained its situation, they take from one to two thousand oysters as a specimen. The shells are opened, and if the pearls collected from a thousand oysters be worth three pounds sterling, a good fishery may be expected. The " banks/'
or beds of oysters, are scattered over a space in the gulph of Manaar, extending thirty miles from north to south, and twenty-four from east to west. There are fourteen beds (not all, however, productive), of which the largest is ten miles long, and two broad. The depth of water is from three to fifteen fathoms.
The pearl-oysters in these banks are all of one species f, and of the same form: in shape not very unlike our common English oyster,—but considerably larger, being from eight to ten inches in circumference. The body of the animal is white, fleshy, and glutinous: the inside of the shell (the real " mother of pearl,") is even brighter and more beautiful than the pearl itself: the outside smooth and dark-coloured. The pearls are most commonly contained in the thickest, and most fleshy part of the oyster. A single oyster will frequently contain several pearls, and one is on record, as having produced one hundred and fifty. The pearl itself is probably the result of some
• The insect from which our most beautiful scarlet-dyes are prepared.
t The MtUagrma Mnrgaritifera of Lamarck
lmmer view, showing the Pearls.
Sometimes the English government of Ceylon fishes the banks entirely at its own risk; sometimes, the boats are let to many speculators: but, most frequently, the right of fishing is sold to one individual, who sub-lets boats to others. The fishery for the season of the year 1804, was let by government to an individual for no less a sum than 120,000/.
At the beginning of March, the fishery commenced and upwards of two hundred and fifty boats were employed'in the fishery alone. These, with their crews and divers, and completely equipped with every thing necessary to conduct the business of the fishing, come from different parts of the coast of Coromandel. After going through various ablutions and incantations, and other superstitious ceremonies, the occupants of these boats embark at midnight, guided by pilots, and as soon as they reach the banks, they cast anchor, and wait the dawn of day.
At about seven in the morning, when the rays of the sun begin to emit some degree of warmth, the diving commences. A kind of open scaffolding, formed of oars and other pieces of wood, is projected from each side of the boat, and from it the divingtackle is suspended, with three stones on one side, and two on the other. The diving-stone hangs from an oar by a light rope and slip knot, and descends about five feet into the water. It is a stone of fiftysix pounds weight, of a sugar-loaf shape. The rope passes through a hole in the top of the stone, above which a strong loop is formed, resembling a stirrupiron, to receive the foot of the diver. The diver wears no clothes, except a slip of calico round his loins,— swimming in the water, he takes hold of the rope, and puts one foot into the loop or stirrup, on the top of the stone. He remains in this upright position for a little while, supporting himself by the motion of one arm. Then a basket, formed of a wooden hoop and net-work, suspended by a rope, is thrown into the water to him, and in it he places his other foot. Both the ropes of the stone and the basket he holds for a little while in one hand. When he feels himself properly prepared and ready to go down, he grasps his nostrils with one hand, to prevent the water from rushing in; with the other gives a sudden pull to the running-knot suspending the stone, and instantly descends: the remainder of the rope fixed to the basket is thrown into the water after him, at the same moment: the rope attached to the stone is in such a position as to follow him of itself. As soon as he touches the bottom, he disentangles his foot from the stone, which is immediately drawn up, and suspended again to the projecting oar in the same manner as before, to be in readiness for the next diver. The diver, arrived at the bottom of the sea, throws himself as much as possible upon his face, and collects every thing he can get hold of into the basket. When he is ready to ascend, he gives a jerk to the rope, and the persons in the boat, who hold the other end of it, haul it up as speedily as possible. The diver, at the same time, free of every incumbrance, warps up by the rope, and always gets above water a considerable time before the basket. He presently comes up at a distance from the boat, and swims about, or takes hold of an oar or a rope, until his turn comes to descend again; but he seldom comes into the boat, until the labour of the day is over. When a young diver is training to the business, he descends in the arms of a man completely experienced in the art, who takes great care of him, and shows him the manner of proceeding, and the pupil at first brings up in his hand a single oyster, a stone, or a little sand, merely to show that he has reached the bottom. The length of time during which the divers remain under water, is rarely much more than a minute and a half; yet in this short period, in a ground richly clothed with oysters, an expert diver will often put as many as one hundred and fifty into his basket. There are two divers attached to each stone, so that they go down alternately: the one rests and refreshes, while the other plunges. The men, after diving, generally find a small quantity of blood issue from their nose and ears, which they consider as a favourable symptom, and perform the operation with greater comfort after the bleeding has commenced. They seem to enjoy the labour as a pleasant pastime, and never murmur or complain, unless when the banks contain a scarcity of oysters, though their labours are continued for six hours.
When the day is sufficiently advanced, the head pilot makes a signal, and the fleet set sail for the shore. All descriptions of people hasten to the water's edge to welcome their return, and the crowd, stir, and noise are then immense. Every boat comes to its own station, and the oysters are carried into certain paved enclosures on the sea-shore, where they are allowed to remain in heaps (of course, well guarded) for ten days, that time being necessary to render them putrid. When the oysters are sufficiently decayed, they are thrown into a large vessel filled with salt water, and left there for twelve hours to soften their putrid substance. The oysters are then taken up, one by one, the shells broken from one another, and washed in the water. Those shells which have pearls adhering to them are thrown on one side, and afterwards handed to clippers, whose business it is to disengage the pearls from the shells, with pincers.
When all the shells are. thrown out, the slimy substance of the oysters remains, mixed with sand and broken fragments of shells, at the bottom of the vessel. The dirty water is lifted out in buckets, and poured into a sack made like a jelly-bag, so that no pearls can be lost. Fresh water being then added from time to time, and the whole substance in the vessel continually agitated, the sand and pearls together are by degrees allowed to sink to the bottom.
As soon as the sand is dry, it is sifted; the large pearls, being conspicuous, are easily gathered; but the separating the small and diminutive (" seed pearls," as they are called), is a work of considerable labour. When once separated from the sand, washed with salt water, dried, and rendered perfectly clean, they are sorted into classes, according to their sizes, by being passed through sieves. After this, a hole is drilled through each pearl; they are arranged on strings, and are then fit for the market.
Pearls have been considered as valuable ornaments from the earliest times: they are mentioned in the book of Job (xxviii. 18), and are often alluded to by the classical writers. There have been various attempts made to imitate them successfully, one of the most singular of which,—known to have been practised early in the Christian sera, on the banks of the Red Sea,—is still carried on in China. A hole is bored in the shell of the pearl-oyster, a piece of iron-wire inserted, and the oyster restored to its place: the animal, wounded by the point of the wire, deposits a coat of pearly matter round it: this gradually hardens, successive layers are added, till a pearl of the requisite size is formed, and the shell is once more brought to land.
False pearls are made of hollow glass globules, the inside of which is covered with a liquid, called pearlessence, and then filled with white wax. This liquid is composed of the silver-coloured particles, which adhere to the scales of the Bleak (Arlette), and was first applied to this purpose early in the last century by a Frenchman of the name of Jacquin.
In the year 1761, Linnaeus discovered the art by which the muscles which are found in many of our rivers might be made to produce pearls: but we believe it has never been made public. The muscles found in the river Conway, in Wales, and in some of the rivers of Scotland, have not unfrequently produced large and fine-coloured pearls. F. E. P.
[Abridged from Cordiner's History of Ceylon.]
THE EVENING CLOUD.
A Cloud lay cradled near the setting sun,
A gleam of crimson tinged its braided snow; Long had I wateh'd the glory moving on
O'er the still radiance of the lake below;
Tranquil its spirit seem'd, and floated slow, E'en in its very motion there was rest,
While every breath of eve that chanced to blow wafted the traveller to the beauteous west;—
Emblem, methought, of the departed soul, To whose white robe the gleam of bliss is given,
And, by the breath of mercy, made to roll, Right onward to the golden gates of heaven;
Where, to the eye of faith, it peaceful lies,
And tells to man his glorious destinies.
The names which were at first given to men seem to have had a relation either to some remarkable quality by which an individual might be distinguished, or to some particular circumstance in his history. Although there be many names, of the meaning of which all trace has been lost, yet it is by no means probable that any senseless sound was ever applied as a designation to man. Of this we have so many examples in sacred and profane history, that we may draw this conclusion from analogy, as well as probability. Thus the word Adam, in the Hebrew language, signifies earth, and was given to the parent of mankind in remembrance of his being formed out of the dust of the ground. When Eve exclaimed, in her joy at the birth of her first-born son, "I have gotten a man from the Lord," she gave to him the name of Cain, which signifies possession. To the Jewish lawgiver was given the name of Moses, which, in the Hebrew tongue, is drawn forth, in remembrance of his being drawn out of the water by the daughter of Pharaoh. Numberless similar instances might be adduced from Holy Writ, as well as from the Greek and Roman languages.
Turn we now to the ancient form of our own language, the Anglo Saxon, in which we shall find abundant proof of that which has been asserted. Thus