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cut out. Upon his speaking in pathetic terms with that emotion natural to a daring spirit, the general ordered him to be struck across the mouth to silence him; which was done with such violence that the blood issued forth.” Travels, vol. i. p. 297. .
No. 1083.li. 11. And come with singing unto Zion.] In describing the order of the caravans Pitts informs
" that some of the camels have bells about their necks, and some about their legs, like those which our carriers put about their fore-horses' necks, which, together with the servants (who belong to the camels and travel on foot) singing all night, make a pleasant noise, and the journey passes away delightfully.” This circumstance is explanatory of the singing of the Israelites in their return to Jerusalem.
HARMER, vol. i. p. 469.
No. 1084.—-i. 23. Who have said to thy soul, Bow down, that we may go over.] This is a very strong and expressive description of the insolent pride of eastern conquerors. The following is one out of many instances of it. The emperor Valerian being through treachery taken prisoner by Sapor king of Persia, was treated by him as the basest and most abject slave. For the Persian monarch commanded the unhappy Roman to bow himself down, and offer him his back, on which he set his foot in order to mount his chariot or his horse, whenever he had occasion. Lactantius de Mort. Persec. cap. 5. Aurel. Victor. Epitome, cap. 32.
Bp. Lowth, in loc.
No. 1085.-lii. 8. And who shall declare his generation?] It is said in the Mishna, that before any one was punished for a capital crime proclamation was made before the prisoner by the public crier, “Whoever knows any thing of his innocence, let him come and declare it of him.” On the original passage the Gemała of Babylon adds, that before the death of Jesus this proclamation was made for forty days, but no defence could be found. It is truly surprising to see such falsities, contrary to well known facts.
Bp. Lowth, in loc.
No. 1086.-liv. 12. I will make thy windows of agates, and thy gates of carbuncles, and all thy borders of pleasant stones.] The meaning of this passage must bc, “ I will inlay the mouldings, and other members of the architecture which ornaments thee as a palace, with the most valuable decorations," as royal halls are adorned in the East.
“ The first object that attracts attention," says Francklin, (History of Shah Allum) is the dewan aum, or public hall of audience for all descriptions of people. It is situated at the upper end of a spacious square: and though at present much in decay, is a noble building. On each side of the dewan aum, and all round the square, are apartments of two stories in height, the walls and front of which, in the times of the splendor of the empire, were adorned with a profusion of the richest tapestry, velvets, and silks. The nobles vying with each other in rendering them the most magnificent, especially on festivals and days of public rejoicings, which presented a grand sight. See Esther i. 6. From hence we went to the dewan khass.
“ This building likewise is situated at the upper end of a spacious square, elevated upon a terrace of marble about four feet in height. The dewan khass in former times was adorned with excessive magnificence : and though repeatedly stripped and plundered by successive invaders, still retains sufficient beauty to render it admired. I judge the building to be a hundred and
fifty feet in length by forty in breadth. The roof is flat, supported by numerous columns of fine white marble, which have been richly ornamented with inlaid flowered work of different coloured stones: the cornices and borders have been decorated with a frieze and sculptured work. The ceiling was formerly incrusted with a rich foliage of silver throughout its whole extent, which has been long since taken away. The delicacy of the inlaying in the compartments of the walls is much to be admired. And it is a matter of bitter regret to see the barbarous ravages that have been made by picking out the different cornelians, and breaking the marble by violence, Around the exterior of the dewan khass, in the cornice, are the following lines written in letters of gold, upon a ground of white marble. If there be a paradise upon earth, this is it, it is this, it is this. The terrace of this building is composed of large slabs of marble, and the whole building is crowned at top with four cupolas of the same material. The royal baths built by Shah Jehan are situated a little to the northward of the dewan khass, and consist of three very large rooms, surmounted by domes of white marble. The inside of them about two-thirds of the way up is lined with marble, having beautiful borders of flowers worked in cornelians and other stones, executed with much taste.”
Theological Magazine, vol. iii. p. 195.
No. 1087.-lvii. 6. The smooth stones.] This refers to stones made smooth by oil poured on them, as was frequently done by the heathen. Theophrastus has marked this as.one strong feature in the character of the superstitious man: “ Passing by the anointed stones in the streets, he takes out his phial of oil, and pours it on them; and having fallen on his knees, and made his adorations, he departs.” Bp. Lowth, in loc.
No. 1088.-Is. 13. The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir-tree, the pine-tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary.] On great occasions the temple was decorated with branches of various sorts of trees. In the Apocrypha allusions are to be found to this practice. Upon the same day that the strangers profaned the temple, on the very same day it was cleansed again, even the fire and twentieth day of the same month, which is Casleu; and they kept eight days with gladness; therefore they bare branches, and fair boughs, and palms also, and sang psalms. 2 Macc. x. 5, 6, 7. The usage is again confirmed when the high priest Alcimus, to recover access to the holy altar which he had forsaken, is said to present to the king Demetrius a crown of gold and a palın, and also (some) of the boughs which were used solemnly in the temple, 2 Macc. xiv. 4. The prophet Isaiah is supposed to have the same allusion in the passage above cited.
No. 1039.-- sii. 6. I have set watchmen upon thy walls, 0 Jerusalem, who shall never hold their peace, day nor night; yethat make mention of the Lord, keep not silence.] The image in this place is taken from the temple service, in which there was appointed a constant watch day and night by the Levites. Now the watches in the East, even to this day, are performed by a loud cry from time to time by the watchmen, to mark the time, and that very frequently, and in order to shew that they themselves are constantly attentive to their duty. “The watchmen in the camp of the caravans go their rounds, crying one after another, God is one, he is merciful; and often add, take heed to yourselves." (Tavern. Voyage de Perse, 1. i. c. 9.) The reader will observe in this extract how mention is made of the name of God by the watchmen.
No. 1090.—Ixii. 10. Cast up the highway.] The following extracts will sufficiently explain the nature of these highways. Herbert says, (p. 170.) “ the most part of the night we rode upon a paved causey, broad enough for ten horses to go a-breast; built by extraordinary labour and expense over a part of a great desert, which is so even that it affords a large horizon. Howbeit being of a boggy loose ground upon the surface, it is covered with white salt, in some places a yard deep, a miserable passage ; for, if either the wind drive the loose salt abroad, which is like dust, or that by accident the horse or camel forsake the causey, the bog is not strong enough to uphold them, but suffers them to sink past all recovery.'
s. The most important and most useful monument of antiquity in this country is the causey built by Shah Abbas the Great about the beginning of the last century, which runs from Keskar in the south-west corner of the Caspian, by Astrabad in the south-east corner, and several leagues yet farther, being in all near three. hundred English miles. During this period it has hardly ever been repaired; it must however be observed, that few or no wheel carriages are in use in this country, so that the pavement is yet preserved in many places very perfect. In some parts it is above twenty yards broad, being raised in the middle, with ditches on each side. There are many bridges upon it, under which water is conveyed to the rice fields; but these are made level, and do not interrupt the prospect.”
HANWAY's Travels in Persia, vol. i. p. 198.
No. 1091.-Ixii. 10. Go through, go through the gates.] Repetition is a figure very frequent in the Oriental languages, and instances of it occur in several parts of the scriptures. It is also to be found in common authors. Churdin, translating a Persian letter,