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“ The serpent beguiled me."--Gen. iii. 13.
“Serpent worship was exceedingly general, especially in Egypt and the East, and this is not to be accounted for but as it originated from a superstitious fear of the malignant demon, who, under that animal form, brought death into the world, and obtained a destructive dominion over men. That in ancient sculptures and paintings, the serpent symbol is sometimes emblematical of wisdom, eternity, and other moral ideas, may be allowed; but it often appears connected with representations, which prove that under this form, the evil principal was worshipped, and that human sacrifices were offered to gratify him who was a “murderer from the beginning." In the model of the tomb of Psammis, made by Mr. Belzoni, and recently exhibited in London, and in the plates which accompany his work on Egypt, are seen various representations of monstrous serpents, with the tribute of human heads which had been offered to them. This is still more strikingly exemplified in a copy of part of the interior of an Egyptian tomb, at Biban al Melook, in RICHARDSON's Travels in Egypt :before an enormous serpent, three men are represented on their knees, with their heads just struck off by the executioner, “ while the serpent erects his crest to a level with their throats, ready to drink the stream of life as it gurgles from their veins.” This was probably the serpent Typhon of the ancient Egyptiaus ; the same as the Python of the Greeks; and, as observed by Mr. Faber, " the notion that the Python was oracular, may have sprung from a recollection of the vocal responses which the tempter gave to Eve, under the borrowed figure of that reptile." By consulting MOORE's Hindu Pantheon it will be seen that the serpent Caliya is represented as the decided enemy of the mediatorial God, Krishna, whom he persecutes, and on whom he inflicts various sufferings, though he is at length vanquished. Krishna pressed within the folds of the serpent, and then triumphing over him, and bruising his head beneath his feet, is the subject of a very ancient Hindu bas-relief, and carries with it its own interpretation.”—Watson's Theolog. Instit.
“ Make thee an ark.”—Gen. vi. 14.
“The dimensions of the ark were three hundred cubits in length, fifty in breadth, and thirty in height; and it consisted of three stories, or floors. Reckoning the cubit at eighteen inches, it will be found that it must have been of the burden of forty-two thousand, four hundred and thirteen tops. A first rate man of war is between two thousand two hundred, and two thousand three hundred tons; and, consequently, the ark had the capacity or stowage of eighteen of such ships, the largest in present use, and might carry twenty thousand men, with provisions for six months, besides the weight of eighteen hundred cannons, aud of all military stores. It was then by much the largest ship ever built. Can we doubt of its being sufficient to contain eight persons, and about two hundred or two hundred and fifty pairs of four-footed animals ? a number to which, according to Mr. Buffon, all the various distinct species may be reduced, together with all the subsistence necessary for a twelvemonth."-Dr. HALE's New Analysis, vol. i. p. 328.
The antediluvian chronology* embraces, according to the Hebrew bible, a term of the Samaritan version
1307 the Septuagint,+ or Greek version 2242
Josephus, the Jewish historian 2256 The postdiluvian chronology,t in the period between the deluge and the birth of Terah, contains, according to the Hebrew bible the Samaritan version
872 the Septaagint +
923 Whether the variations observable in the above computations, arose from accident or design, it is not an easy matter to determine with certainty. The subject is examined at large in the New Analysis of Chronology, by. Dr. Hales, vol. i. $ 2. art. 2, 3, 4. to which the reader is referred; the arguments being too copious for insertion here. It may be nécessary however to observe, that Dr. HALES, throughout the whole of his work, gives a decided preference to the chronology of Josephus; which, as amended by him, interposes 5411 years between the Creation and the birth of Christ; whereas the Hebrew chropology, during the same period, contains only 4000 years.
" All the earth was of one language, and of one speech.”
Gen. xi. 1.
“ Taking his (Moses's) account of the creation, as stated in his own works, I only mean to observe, that the Arabic,
• See note (*) p. 15.
or, what is the same thing, the Hebrew, must have been the language of Adam and all his immediate descendants. Moses expressly says, that the name of Paradise was Eden, which every one knows to siguify pleasure. The first man was called Adam, because he was made of (aphar min haadamah) dust of the red earthi Eve was called by her husband Hawah, the causer of life ; because she was, says the historian, the Mother of all living. Eve, too, is recorded in the same nar. rative, to have called her first-born 'son Cain : because she said, “ Kunithi ish eth Jehoah,” I have gotten a 'man from the Lord; and appears to have called her second son Habel, a word known to signify vanity. When this son was murdered by his brother, she called her third child, bord after that event, Seth; because the Lord (Sath) had given her another seed instead of Abel.: Thus Moses etymologizes to our hand, the words Eve, Cain, and Seth, from sentences spoken by the persons themselves, and, evidently in their own language. We are left to find out the meaning of the rest, which, to a scholar, is indeed easy. The signification of the names of the children of Cain, such as: Mehuiael, Hanoch, Naamah, &c. may be made out with great certainty ; but what is most remarkable of all, is three lines in verse, spoken by Lamech, the descendant of Cain, exactly in the same measure and form with the blessing of Jacob, Gen. xlix. The names of the line of Seth are all evidently Hebrew; some of them composinded with the word El, God. The last of that line before the deluge, Noh, was so called by his father, because, he said, this child will comfort us finghmenu) for the toil of our hands on the ground which the Lord hath cursed.”
“ After the flood, Noah spoke a series of verses concerning his three sons, which we know to be the ipsissima verba of that patriarch, from the 'use made of the word Japhet (Yapht Elohim leyephet) God shall enlarge Japhet; for the name of this son signifies enlarged. To this short summary of facts (the last might be much augmented) let us add the well-kuown