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will probably be found to be as nearly as possible fifteen. Besides the Valonia oak, there grow wild in Palestine other species of the genus, one of which is distinctly identified with Scripture Botany. Another is mentioned in the Apocrypha; and another or two may be included perhaps in the general and comprehensive idea conveyed by the Hebrew el. Oaks must not be thought of as trees distinguishable from all others by their leaves. This may do well enough in regard to our native English oak, when compared with the elm, the beech, the hornbeam, etc., but out of England the character fails.
Oaks are characterised essentially by their acorns—those beautiful smooth brown nuts, which sit so comfortably in their smooth-lipped cups, the latter sometimes mossy, sometimes embossed or tessellated, and which, though nippled at the summit, have at the base so curious an image of the pupil of the eye. If the etymologists be right, in this mark is found the origin of the very name of the tree, so far as regards the Germanic languages, the ancestral form being thought to be identical with the fons et origo which gave rise also to the Latin oculus. The genus contains very many species, those of Europe .
, being but few compared with the oaks of North America, while many others are natives of mountainous regions in the tropics. Two or three are found in places so unlikely even as the Indian islands and the Malayan peninsula, growing aboriginally at the level of the sea. The greater portion of these many species are deciduous; usually, too, the leaves are indented, more or less after the fashion of those of our English oaks ;-some acquire in autumn a certain royalty of look,
hared by few other trees, the leaves turning crimson before they fall ; nearly the whole are remarkable, while young, for the length and strength of their tap roots; a few, instead of being trees, are mere shrubs, and have prickly leaves, so as to simulate the holly-bush ; others again have foliage which brings to mind either the willow or the olive. With all these deviations there is still perfect uniformity in regard to the fruit. No matter how unlike in habit and dress, the acorn is always present and unmistakeable.
The species which Scripture may perhaps refer to, in addition to the Ægilops, are the Quercus pseudo-coccifera, and the holm-oak, Quercus Ilex, the latter of which is mentioned in the Apocrypha under its 'classical name of pivos. The pseudo-coccifera is an evergreen species, attaining considerable dimensions ; the leaves are thicker than those of the true coccifera, to be spoken of presently, less wavy also, twice or thrice longer, rigid, glabrous, and with short and spinous serratures.
Whatever it may have been in the time of the prophets, it is said to be uow one of the most conspicuous of its kind in Palestine, one of particularly fine appearance standing at Mamre.
(To be continued.)
ON THE DATE OF THE FULL OPENING OF SWEDEN
BORG’S SPIRITUAL SIGHT, AND THE DEFINITE COM-
In the year 1840 the Rev. Manoah Sibly having had reason to believe, especially from his acquaintance with the Spiritual Diary, that the date of 1743 mentioned in Swedenborg's letter to Mr. Hartly was an error, 3 having been printed for 5, and that the time of the Lord's manifestation to him, his endowment with open vision, and the power of conversing with angels and spirits, was 1745, communicated to the Intellectual Repository of that year his view and his reasons.
Mr. Sibly chiefly based his observation upon n. 1166 in the Diary, which seems indeed to be precise and sufficient, but which Mr. S. strengthened by several references to the printed works confirmatory of the date advocated, namely, 1745.
The Rev. S. Noble, in his edition of Heaven and Hell, intimates that he agrees with the opinion that 1745 is the true date, and refers to another entry in the Diary, n. 397, where the date April 1745 is attached to the description of a scene which certainly has much of the air of having been the one which prepared Swedenborg specially for
The Adversaria, which contained Swedenborg's own notes of his experiences, and his enlightenment in divine things for two years immediately following the opening of his spiritual sight, detailing the matters which did occur at the time they were occurring, and preceding the Diary, was not printed in Latin when Mr. Sibly wrote, and has not yet been translated into English ; but amongst other interesting disclosures, it so fully confirms the view formed from their more limited data by the two venerable and enlightened New Churchmen to whom I have referred above, that I conceive a more full statement of what is contained in the Adversaria will be interesting to your readers.
1 See a paper by Dr. Hooker in the Linnean Society's Transactions, vol. xxiii.
The whole of the Adversaria were written, as Dr. Emanuel Tafel states in the preface, in the years 1746 and 1747. All the dates attached to the different numbers, and they are very frequent, refer to these two years.
On page 16, n. 2, he speaks of being able to speak from experience concerning intercourse with spirits, but in n. 475 we have this precise information: “What the kingdom of God is can only be manifestly perceived by the aforesaid senses; up to this time no one could be. lieve that such unspeakable felicities could really exist, but that they may not be rejected as fables, I can bear witness, and that most sacredly, that I have been admitted by the Messiah, the Saviour of the world, Jesus of Nazareth Himself, into that kingdom, and I have converse there with heavenly beings, with spirits who have been raised from the dead, even with those who have declared themselves to be Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Esau, Rebecca, Moses, Aaron, and the Apostles, especially Paul and James; and that now for the period of EIGHT MONTHS almost constantly, except while I was on my journey from London to Sweden." Eight months from the early part of 1746 must bring us to 1745. In n. 943 we read, “ But that every one may believe, I can declare in the presence of God that I have experienced so sensibly that I cannot conceive of anything more manifest to the senses, and this now for the space of EIGHT Months, by the Divine grace of the Messiah, that my mind has been guided by the spirits of His heaven, with whom during that period I have conversed daily and almost continuously. . . In the meantime I have been in my own country among my friends for FIVE MONTHS, and with others in society conversing as before, no one observing that I was having such heavenly communications." He arrived in Sweden, as he informs us, in the next citation in August 19th, 1745. Five months after August 19th would be January 1746, the date of Swedenborg's writing. Nine months before that date, that is, eight months of open communication with the spiritual world, and one month during his journey, in which his intercourse was suspended, would bring us to April 1745. In our next quotation this date is expressly given. There is at least one intermediate notice, n. 967, in which Emanuel Swedenborg states that he has had living open experience for some months, which could hardly extend beyond the previous year 1745. But in 1003 we read the following explicit information :
“There are very many people who say to themselves that they can have no faith in such things, unless they might be allowed to enter heaven, and to see the objects which exist there, and to speak with such as have died and risen again; but I can testify that now for the space of Eight MONTHS, by the pure mercy and grace of the Messiah, I have conversed with the inhabitants of heaven as with my familiar friends here on earth, and this almost continually; so that not only have I experienced this, but I have been instructed by lively demonstrations and continual converse, entirely as I have testified. Wherefore these things which appear so astonishing I wish to publish, that people may believe me, who have been so long in heaven, whilst I have also been with my friends on earth ; EVEN FROM THE MIDDLE OF April 1745 to the 29th of January or 9th of February 1746, except the month which elapsed during my journey to Sweden, where I arrived August 19th, old style.”
It would seem to be impossible to add to the clearness, comprehensiveness, and exactitude of this statement in vol. i.; but the reader of the Adversaria will be interested in noticing the frequency with which Swedenborg refers to it in subsequent volumes and numbers. Thus, in vol. ii. n. 87, he says his experience has now lasted NINE MONTHS. In n. 135 he declares his experiences have now continued between NINE AND TEN MONTHS, both these evidently referring to April 1745. In n. 1285, vol. ii., he declares heaven has been opened to him, and he has been enabled to speak with its inhabitants for AN ENTIRE YEAR. In n. 1684, vol. ii., he has had daily experience now ABOUT A YEAR. A year before the middle of 1746 would be 1745. In n. 1957, vol. ii., he relates the following in an explanation of the circumstance of the formation of the frogs in the waters of Egypt during the plague endured by Pharaoh and his people. He says, “There are unclean spirits who excite the lusts, which inflame the body and the blood in the sensual pleasures of voluptuousness, which are merely corporeal, and belong to the luxuries peculiar to the taste. They are called frogs, and are unclean spirits who operate upon the lowest corporeal parts of a man, and are a species of vermin of a larger kind and of various forms, which appeared to me on a former occasion when they were going out from me, and indeed they were most manifest. I saw them creeping before my eyes, and by and by they were gathered together into one mass, and a fire appeared amongst them, and they were dissipated with a noise which I heard distinctly with my ears as a crackling, when they were entirely dispersed and the place was purified. This was in London in the month of April 1745. 1) seemed first as if a vapour exuded from my pores, but on the ground
SPACE OF A YEAR.
it became as if there were so many vermin creeping about in great abundance.”
This is evidently the same transaction which Swedenborg relates again in the Diary, 397, to which Mr. Noble refers, and to which the date is attached, April 1745, as if it had been inserted again, though now two years had passed, that it might not be forgotten.
In vol. iii., n. 681, we get a date. The author speaks of his perception of divine things flowing into him when he was engaged in prayer, and especially in uttering the Lord's Prayer, and this he says he declares most sacredly on this day, May the 16th, 1746. Soon after, n. 1129, he says he has had living experience for the
year before would be April 1745. In n. 3102, he says, “ A phantasy is nothing, but there is a continual speech (with spirits) which is no phantasy," and he has enjoyed it for FIFTEEN MONTAS. “as the friends know with whom he has conversed in Sweden, and as would abundantly appear if an historical description of his life should be given.”
Vol. iv. n. 4682. These are the things which, by the divine mercy of the Lord, he has been learning for sixTEEN MONTHS. The date just before is July 28th, 1746. Sixteen months before would be April 1745.
And in n. 7572 we find the following: “I have had so many kinds of visions, with such a multitude of objects, while I was in full wakefulness, that if I were to relate a hundredth part of them, those who do not believe that visions and revelations are granted would indeed be astonished, so I am silent, but they have lasted ONE YEAR AND ALMOST A HALF.” A year and a half before would bring us to April1745.
We have already referred to the remarkable statement in the Spiritual Diary, but we now give it in full, that the reader may observe the complete testimony it affords on the subject we have now before us.
The Diary was commenced and continued, it will be remembered, immediately after the two years had closed in which he had been engaged with the Adversaria. The paragraph which follows has for its title, “He who is immersed in worldly cares sinks utterly into another state" (a corporeal one).
N. 1166. “When, therefore, now for almost three years, or for thirty-three months, that my mind, abstracted indeed from bodily concerns, has been in that state in which it could be present in the societies of spiritual and celestial beings, and at the same time be like another person, in the society of men, without any difference, at which the spirits have been astonished; yet when I became intensely engaged