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simply ornamental ; as he wished to confine himself to such Illustrations as either distinctly explain an obscure passage, or as prove the truth of the historian's statement.

The Texts are quoted in the words of the Authorised Version, but in many cases the translation has been corrected by the help of the Hebrew or Greek original ; as the translators of our Authorised Version often thought it unnecessary to point out peculiarities in manners and customs which it is the aim of these pages to explain.



March 8th, 1869.



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"And a river went out of Eden to water the garden ; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads. The name of the first is Pison : that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah [or Arabia).

The name of the second river is Gihon : the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia. And the name of the third river is Hiddekel (or the Tigris]: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates.”

A MAP of the world, as known to the Israelites before the time of Solomon, with Eden at the sources of the Tigris and Euphrates. Josephus (Ant. I. i. 3) considers the Gihon as the Nile, and the Pison as the Ganges ; and Virgil (Geor. iv. 288) makes the Nile rise in India, as if it were the same as the Ganges. Thus the Ancients thougḥt that the Gihon flowed round the western half of


the world into one branch of the Nile, and the Pison flowed round the eastern half, through the Ganges, into the other branch of the Nile. It was not before the

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reign of Darius that it was discovered that the Persian Gulf was joined by water to the Red Sea, or that there was any ocean to separate the Ganges from the Nile.

Havilah is Arabia, and Cush is Ethiopia. In Genesis x. we shall see Cush used for the country on both sides of the Red Sea.

The earth was thought by the Jews to be circular, and this circle was thought to be bounded by water, on the outer edge of which, rested the vault of the Heavens, as we learn from Job, xxvi. 10, which in the Hebrew says,

“He fixed an arch on the face of the waters,

At the boundary between light and darkness.” Homer called this water the river Oceanus. See Odyssey, xi, 638.

See also the Note on Prov. viii. 27.

In this map Jerusalem stands in the middle of the circular earth, and so the Jews considered it. Ezekiel (xxxviii. 12) describes his nation as dwelling in the very middle spot of the earth. In the beginning of Solomon's reign, the whole of the known world was included within our circle, drawn at one thousand miles from its centre. For the time of the Jewish monarchy's overthrow, as we learn from Ezekiel's geographical chapter xxvii, the circle must be drawn at fifteen hundred miles from the same centre.

GENESIS, II. 17. “Of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

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An Egyptian priest and his soul in the form of a bird with human head and hands.

They are being fed by the goddess Neith out of the sacred tree.

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From a funereal tablet in the British Museum.'

This tree, with the goddess in its branches, is frequent in the Egyptian representations of Paradise.

In the Life of Apollonius of Tyana we are told, that one of the sacred trees in the Thebaid spoke to him, and told him that he was a favourite of Heaven, speaking in a woman's voice, agreeably with our picture.

The soul in the form of a bird we shall see again in Note on Acts, xxiii. 8.


“ And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die : for God doth know, that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened.”

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A Greek fable, which seems to have been borrowed from the Book of Genesis, describes the daughters of Hesperus as living in a garden, and guarding the golden apples on a tree which grew therein,

The serpent

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