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at least, some copies have it Goshen in Arabia, “ since that was farther off from Egypt than the « land of Canaan. St. Jerom thinks that it was “ the same as Thebaïs in Ethiopia or bordering to “ it: but that was too long a journey for Jacob, “ neither would Joseph have been near enough to " have seen and supplied his wants : whereas he
gives it as a reason to his brethren, in the former chapter, for his choosing this land, that they
might be near him. But this Goshen was situate " between the Red Sea and the Nile, upon the “ borders of Canaan, not far from On or Hiera“ polis, where his chief habitation was. “ fruitful spot of ground, and fit for cattle; and " therefore Josephus tells us that Pharaoh kept “ his own there. It was separate from Egypt, " and therefore fittest for Jacob and his family; “ which would be out of all danger of interfering “ with the Egyptians.” 19 What an inconsistent jumble is here! This writer wonders that the Seventy should place Goshen in Arabia ; and therefore, to mend the matter, he places it in the confines of Canaan : whereby he shews, that he neither knew the true situation of Egypt, nor the extent of Arabia, nor the limits of the land he speaks of.
He did not know that all to the east of
19 Universal History, vol. 1. p. 457, note A.
the Nile was called Arabia. 1° Η δε μεταξυ τε Νειλε και τα Αραβιε κολπε Αραβια μεν εσι.
21 Ultra Pelusia acum Arabia est, ad Rubrum mare pertinens : and
Αραβια συναπτυσα προς μεν την δυσιν Αιγυπτω. . He did not know that the city Heliopolis, which he alludes to and calls Hierapolis, was in Arabia : which city he places not far from the borders of Canaan; between which places, however, there was a mighty interval. For Canaan, as it was bounded at the time we are speaking of, had between it and Egypt part of Philistim or Palæstina propria. Next in order to the Philistines were the 23 Amalekites; who stretched across almost from one sea to the other, and were a very powerful nation. Between them and the city Heliopolis was the desert abovementioned; from the commencement of which to 24 Heliopolis could not be less than 150 miles. This
20 Strab. vol. 2. pag. 1155. 1 21 Plin. Nat. Hist. lib. 5. cap. 11.
22 Steph. Byzant.
23 According to Josephus the Amalekites reached from Pelusium to the Red Sea. Antiq. Jud. lib. 6. cap. 8.
24 There were two cities named Heliopolis ; of which I shall have a great deal to say hereafter. One was in lower Egypt ; and very antient, being the On of Moses and the Prophets : the other of later date, and called properly Onium. It was situated at some distance from the former, and in Arabia. This is a circumstance, that has escaped the notice not only of all the moderns, but of most of the antients.
space is by the writer overlooked, and the country annihilated : so that the confines of Canaan are brought within the verge of upper Egypt. After having determined the situation of this Goshen between the Red Sea and the Nile upon the borders of Canaan, not far from Hierapolis, where it seems Joseph lived, he concludes; “ it was a fruitful spot, “ and separate from Egypt; and therefore fittest “ for Jacob.” In this wide field it is difficult to know the part he alludes to. But in respect to the spot, wherever it was, being fruitful, it is a groundless supposition. I have shewn from many authorities, that it was a barren wild : and as to the land of Goshen being separate from Egypt, it is quite contradictory to the Mosaic account. The sacred historian assures us that it was part of the land of Egypt. 25 The Israelites were to eat by Pharaoh's appointment the fat of the land : the good of all the land of Egypt was theirs. 26 " The land of Egypt “ is before thee;" said the prince of the country; “ in the best of the land make thy father and bre“ thren to dwell.-And Joseph placed his father “ and his brethren, and gave them a possession in " the land of Egypt, in the best of the land, in the “ land of Rameses, as Pharaoh had commanded. " And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt in the “ country of Goshen.” This sure is very explicit and plain. But what evidence is sufficient against the perverseness of human wit, that will so very industriously deviate from the truth? which would persuade us, that “ the best of the land of Egypt" was not the best, nor in Egypt ; and that the Is. raelites were placed in a desert.
28 Gen. 45. v. 18. 20.
The learned editor of 27 Benjamin Tudelensis proceeds upon the same principles as Mr. Sale; and thinks it is plain from scripture, that Goshen was only in the confines of Egypt towards the land of Canaan. Sed ubi fuerit [terrą Goshen] distinctè non docetur : nisi quod historia Exodi in Ægypti confinio versus terram Canaan eam collocat. At Benjamin inter Kairum et Alexandriam eandem recenset : ita sæpe aberrat.-Ideo magis confirmor, ut locum in orientaliori Ægypti regione situm designari credam : nimirum Goshen esse diæcesin circa Heliopolin, sive civitatem Salis; adeoque Rameses ipsam esse Heliopolin. Here is the same uncertainty and confusion that we had above. Goshen iş placed in the confines of Egypt towards Canaan ; and at the same time is in the province, of which Heliopolis was the capital, that is a mediterranean nome of lower Egypt. Mr. Sale's account is so similar to this, that he undoubtedly bor
27 Itinerarium D. Benjaminis cum versione et notis Constantini L'Empereur. Lugd. Bat. Elz. Į633. pag. 223.
rowed his notions from hence : which he seems to have adopted at first sight, without the least trial or examination.
Our very learned countryman Marsham had too much discernment to make Goshen an Arabian province. He places it in Egypt; but in the lower parts, the nearest to Arabia and Syria : 'and for this reason, because Joseph met his father at Goshen, when he was coming from Canaan. 2870sephus patri advenienti è Canaan occurrit ad Ghosen. This is not fairly expressed: indeed, it is '. quite contrary to the Mosaic account. The Scripture does not say that he met his father, as he was coming; that is, as he seems to imply, er adverso : 29 but the contrary. It acquaints us, that the pa
28 Verùm ubi terrarum fuit Ghosen ? certè in inferiore Ægypto ; et habitatio Israelitarum Syriæ et Arabia finitima. Josephus patri advenienti è Canaan occurrit ad Ghosen. Cùm ex Ægypto tandem discederent Israelitæ , primum iter illinc fuit in Succoth, id est tentoria, sive Arabia desertum. Marshami Canon Chronicus, p. 90. edit. Lips.
29 This is one of the inferences that I before complained of, made contrary to the evidence appealed to. Many have fallen into the same mistake, by not attending to the plain and obvious account, as it is given us by the sacred writer. This error occurs in Zonaras. Hem de ins Ayutty ainorov orto aut” (laxw6] doposuwartą Iwona. Vol. 1. p. 31. and in Philo Judæus. 'o do υιος ακέσας (σκοποι γαρ και φρατηρες της δδε σαντ' εδηλων) και μακραν των οριων απεχοντι δια ταχεων αθηντα τω πατρι και κατα την καλυμενην Howwe tonu SYTUZCOYTES,.TIXTHON Manhois. Liber de Joseph.